Vlog Season 2 #4 – Comic Book Shows

21 Nov

I’ve FINALLY got another new video live!

This week, I talked about the various comic book shows on the air right now that I’m enjoying - The Walking Dead, Agents of SHIELD, The Flash, and Gotham.

What’s your favorite comic book show right now?

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What I Watched – November 15

15 Nov
© AMC

© AMC

I have been super-crazy-insane busy lately, hence the lack of posts and new vlogs. I am a terrible blogger. New video coming Friday, and more regular blog content coming starting now!

Episode of the Week

The Walking Dead - “Self-Help”
The Walking Dead has been on a roll in season 5 so far – I really love what the series has done since blowing out of Terminus in the premiere. This week’s episode did an excellent job of providing some much-needed character development for Abraham and Eugene while also pushing the plot forward in a pretty significant way.

Abraham, Eugene, and Rosita joined the show last season, but given all the moving parts and different groups we had to worry about in the journey towards Terminus, we hadn’t spent a lot of time with them. Eugene was the slightly weird nerd who supposedly knew how to end the zombie plague. Abraham was the muscle helping him get where he needed to go. Rosita was Abraham’s girlfriend. That was about it.

This week, we got a little peek into how Abraham ended up here. Shown (very effectively) in short clips throughout the episode, we saw Abraham beat several men to death – right in front of his wife and two children. They were ultimately so afraid of him afterwards, they decided they were better off leaving than staying with him – and were nearly immediately killed by walkers. Overcome with grief, Abraham is just about to blow his own head off when Eugene wanders by, screaming for help. Abraham saves him, and the rest, we assume, is history.

All of this added extra context to Abraham, Eugene, Rosita, Maggie, and Glenn’s struggles while headed for D.C. The gang ran into a series of hurdles – bus crashes, broken-down firetrucks, zombie herds – that would send any rational person back to the relative safety of the church and the rest of the group. Abraham, however, remained hell-bent on his mission. In the context of his story, however, and the fact that Eugene is literally the only reason he’s still alive, his borderline-crazy behavior was much more understandable.

This all led up to Eugene’s revelation that he was not a scientist, but rather just a very good liar who had figured out an excellent way to get people to help him stay alive. I’ve been waiting for that information to come out all season – I’ve read the comics, and didn’t expect them to change that particular bit – and was thrilled with how the show handled the big moment. After Abraham spent the entire hour seemingly losing his grip on his sanity – as we were slowly shown his sad history – to end the episode with him nearly beating Eugene to death and then stumbling away horrified that he’d slipped back into that behavior was a really intense and emotional way for the show to land what was already a great hour of the show.

I’m looking forward to seeing how the show handles Abraham going forward (although it looks like next week we finally get to see what happened on Carol and Daryl’s trip to save Beth!) and how the dynamics of that segment of the group change given everything that happened.
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What I Watched – October 25

25 Oct
© FOX

© FOX

Wrap-up posts two straight weeks?! LOOK AT ME GO!

Episode of the Week

Brooklyn Nine-Nine – “Halloween II”
I have always been a big fan of sitcoms that feature a yearly tradition every season – the Ron and Tammy adventures on Parks and Rec, the Dundies on The Office, etc. So I was thrilled to see Brooklyn Nine-Nine call back to last year’s Halloween bet between Jake and Captain Holt, and set it up as an ongoing thing should the show continue past this season.

This year’s bet involved Jake attempting to steal Captain Holt’s watch off of his arm before a particular time. As with last year, Jake offers extra overtime hours for free if he loses – this time, “five-druple” weeks. It is that rather ridiculous claim that lures Holt in – in the way only Andre Braugher can, he agrees with a hearty “we have an accord!”.

It’s from here that things get really fun. Jake’s plan involves an elaborate distraction from the entire precinct and bringing in a real pickpocket (codename: Fingers, because of course) to swipe the real watch and replace it with a fake while Holt is preoccupied. The plan goes off flawlessly – except the criminal Jake hired runs off with the watch. This sends him and Boyle off on a ridiculous wild goose chase through Brooklyn on Halloween that ends with Jake getting arrested.

After bailing him out, Holt reveals his own elaborate plan, which began the day after last year’s Halloween bet. It involved every member of the precinct and even factored in Fingers the pickpocket. When told by Holt in his victorious, but still no-hint-of-fun deadpan, this was utterly hilarious.

In the midst of the Halloween bet shenanigans, Gina was having drama with her dance team (the wonderfully named Floorgasm) because she was missing rehearsals to go to night school. When Terry found out, he offered to join her for the dance competition, giving us the glorious visual of Gina and Terry dancing together as the episode ended.

All in all, a super fun outing for the show, which remains my favorite comedy on TV right now.

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Vlog Season 2 #3 – Characters I’m Loving Lately

24 Oct

New vlog day!

This week, inspired mostly by a desire to talk about my love of Carol on The Walking Dead, I talk a little bit about a few characters/performances that have really captured my attention in the first few weeks of the fall TV season.

What characters have been your favorites lately?

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What I Watched – October 18

18 Oct
© AMC

© AMC

I’m finally recovered from an AMAZING New York Comic Con weekend last week, and I’m getting caught up on all the TV I missed!

Episode of the Week

The Walking Dead – “No Sanctuary”
I have such a love-hate relationship with The Walking Dead. It is so often a few infuriating choices away from being a really good show it makes me crazy. But then it occasionally throws out an episode like this week’s season five premiere (premieres have always been a strong point for the series), or last season’s stunning “The Grove”, and I remember why I stick around through the frustrating episodes.

“No Sanctuary” was a great hour of TV. The show jumped right back in where we left off last season, with the bulk of the group locked up in the boxcar in Terminus. The episode wasted no time getting to the action, beginning with an excruciating sequence that saw Rick, Daryl, Glenn, Bob, and several people from another group tied up and lined up over a trough. The non-main characters were then knocked out with a baseball bat and had their throats slit one by one, in almost assembly line fashion. Gruesome stuff.

Meanwhile, Carol and Tyreese are slowly heading towards Terminus with Lil’ Ass-kicker baby Judith in tow. Tyreese is still visibly shaken from the Lizzie incident, unable to even bring himself to kill walkers. While they’re out walking, they stumble upon a guy from Terminus and overhear him talking about “the chick with the sword and the kid with the hat”. Carol immediately snaps into action mode.

I’ve written here before about my absolute love for Carol, and I’ll be talking about it again in my next video (Spoiler alert!), so I won’t get into it too much, but needless to say – watching her save the day in this episode was IMMENSELY satisfying. I love that this woman has become perhaps the strongest, savviest person in the group, able to immediately sense that something is wrong, put a plan in action, and save the people who matter to her.

Once Carol blew the ever-loving crap out of the Terminus compound – letting in a nearby zombie herd – all hell broke loose (in the best way!). The rest of the gang spent their time in the boxcar fashioning makeshift weapons out of whatever they can find. Wooden planks, Rosa’s earrings, pieces of pipe – you name it, it was getting sharpened for battle. Good thing, too, since it allowed for some very creative zombie killing as everyone escaped.

It probably got a little lost in the theatrics at Terminus, but I thought what the episode did for Tyreese was really well done. This is a guy we’ve seen struggle with loss and doing what needs to be done at times, but if he’s going to make it he’s going to have to learn to make the tough calls and do things that might fall in a morally gray area. Seeing him snap back into bad-ass mode to save Judith was a great step in that direction.

I’m curious to see where they’re headed this season – we’re starting to get into the chunk of the comics I don’t remember as much. Since they spent the time showing us the (albeit brief) origins of Terminus, will we see Gareth or any of those folks again? And what happens if/when Morgan finds the group (super exciting to see him again, by the way). Great start to the season, looking forward to what comes next!

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Vlog Season 2 #2 – Gilmore Girls

8 Oct

This week’s video is a few days early because I’m going to be at New York Comic Con on Friday!

After Gilmore Girls was added to Netflix streaming on October 1, I knew I had to do a video about the show. I talk a bit about how much I love the show and what, in my opinion, made it so great.

Were you guys as excited as I was about Gilmore Girls hitting Netflix?

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Pilot Review – A to Z

2 Oct
© NBC

© NBC

Tonight was the premiere of NBC’s new sitcom A to Z, starting Ben Feldman and Christina Milioti. I didn’t love the pilot, but it is very sweet and there’s a lot to like in the performances of Feldman and Milioti.

This is yet another show with a concept I’m not sure can sustain itself. We’re introduced to Andrew (Feldman) and Zelda (Milioti) on the day they meet, and are told via voiceover (provided by the wonderful Katey Sagal) that this show will document their entire relationship – all eight months and change of it. It’s left open to interpretation whether that means they get engaged at that point or break up – I’m sure that’s intentional – but I just don’t know what this show looks like if it succeeds and it’s locked into that timeframe. Seems like it’s falling into the same trap How I Met Your Mother did.

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What I Watched – September 27

27 Sep

shield-201

This week was the first full week of the fall TV season, and WHAT A WEEK IT WAS! Lots of great stuff to watch.

 

Episode of the Week

Agents of SHIELD – “Shadows”
I mentioned in this week’s vlog that I hoped Agents of SHIELD season 2 could pick up and build on their streak of great episodes last season. So far, so good.

First of all, I loved the flashback to Peggy Carter and the Howling Commandos in the cold open. Hayley Atwell is just so good in that part, and I cannot wait to see her kicking ass in Agent Carter in a few months.

After the brief visit to 1945 The show jumped right back in to the action. It’s been several months since the finale with Coulson working as director and the team out on missions to attempt to gain intelligence and/or tech about/from Hydra. There are a few new people floating around the core team from last year – notably, Lucy Lawless as Agent Isabelle Hartley. Everything is a lot more intense, in general. The team seems battle-worn, Skye is a full-blown agent now, and Coulson is apparently never around as he flies around the world attempting to recruit loyal SHIELD agents.

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Vlog Season 2 #1 – Fall TV Preview

26 Sep

Another new vlog – but this week, the first episode of SEASON 2! I decided since it’s been over a year, it was time to kick off a new season of my videos, just in time for a new TV season.

In this episode, I talk a little bit about the shows I’m most looking forward to this fall, both new and old.

What are you guys looking forward to this TV season?

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Pilot Review – Gotham

24 Sep
© FOX

© FOX

Fall TV season is here at last, and along with it my attempts to write more frequently. I’m hoping to have semi-regular reviews of various shows and other random pieces up here during the season in addition to my weekly wrap-ups and my vlogs. We’ll see how much time I have to actually pull it off.

To start things off, I wanted to write a little bit about Monday’s premiere of Gotham. This was, by far, the most hyped new show of the season – and I felt it delivered pretty solidly on its lofty expectations. The story was set up nicely, the acting was good, and the atmosphere was terrific. It was a little heavy-handed with the Batman references and exposition in spots, but otherwise, it was a very well-done pilot, and I’m looking forward to seeing where the show goes from here.

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