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Tag Archives: TV

American Horror Story: Coven “The Dead” Live Blog/Review (3×07)

20 Nov

ahs_0238All times central.

9:01-Wow, I forgot Kyle could talk.

9:06-Still, as one-note as his character has been, Peters does fantastic work with the Frankenstein-esque Kyle. It looks like the character is starting to have his own flashbacks, and I hope we obtain more information about him.

9:10-This is a very on point monologue. “I was like, let’s go for Jamba Juice.” Roberts is great at delivering it, and it’s miles better than Murphy’s attempts at touching on racism, that’s for sure, but I’m not entirely sold on the profoundness of the speech. The monologue doesn’t hit as much as Murphy wants it to.

9:12-LaLaurie and Queenie going to a drive through is the best thing ever. This relationship is hilarious in a twisted way, as is pretty much every relationship on this show.

9:13-“Let me guess, cause I’m fat?” “No, it’s cause you’re black. Black as coal.”

9:13-“I’m starting to understand why you’re so damn enormous.”

9:16-Although the last episode didn’t impress me, I do like Huston’s portrayal of the Axeman here; last week, he was more of a horror prop. This week, they’re playing more off his relationship with Fiona.

9:25-Flashcards for Your Angry, Taciturn Frankenstein.

9:27-Angela Bassett is amazing. “Over there, they probably feed you Shake N Bake and watermelon for dessert.” Also, it seems like they’re now trying to play Queenie between Laveau and LaLaurie, which is a fantastic strategy.

9:35-Man ass!

9:42-Yeah, not a very good strategy to tell the love of your life that you’ve watched her her whole life and viewed her as the daughter you never had.

9:44-I like how she just finds the tongue. Also, I never need to see that again.

9:47-I hope this isn’t the last we see of Spalding. Denis O’Hare does fantastic work making him as creepy as possible, and it’d be a shame if this was his end.

9:55-Well, now we get a Kathy Bates showcase. That flashback is chilling and seriously messed up, but Bates is having a blast playing this character. Of course, it still feels like Murphy’s using the relationship with Queenie to almost justify his right to revel in those slave scenes.

10:01-Okay, is this going where I think it’s going? I would be fine with this if afterwards, we get a scene in which Zoe tries to explain to Kyle what just happened using crude drawings on flashcards.

10:05-Yeah, that went there. Anyway, Dylan McDermott should come back. We need another man ass here.

GRADE: B

FINAL THOUGHTS: I’m not sure what this show is doing right now; on the one hand, that’s exactly the feeling this kind of show evokes, but then again, Asylum showed us the show could craft a cohesive storyline with well-formed characters. Right now, we’re jumping all over the place with character motivations that make little sense; for example, I dislike how quickly Queenie turns LaLaurie over to Laveau. Queenie’s not much of a character this season, but rather more of a prop used by Murphy to justify his more shocking scenes. What I mean: he’s bringing up race as much as possible, and he thinks that if all the black people band together to take down the immortal racist slaveowner, everything else will somehow be fine. In fact, I find that I sympathize with LaLaurie, which is strange considering who she is.

Also, as much as I like Roberts and Lange, their respective characters are seemingly in a holding pattern that I’m not very interested in. Madison isn’t exactly different now, as much as Murphy wants us to believe there’s been a change.

Credit to FX and American Horror Story for all pictures. I own nothing.

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Friday Night Lights “Pilot” Review (1×01)

19 Nov

friday-night

“Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose.”

So begins the story of the Dillon Panthers. It’s week one of the new football season, and the atmosphere is buzzing with excitement. There’s a new coach in town and a quarterback phenom, both ready to anchor a team expected to win the State Championship. There’s a coach’s wife, a hard-working second string quarterback, a loud-mouthed running back, and a slacker fullback. There’s a bunch of characters that can’t really be defined in one word like I’ve done above, because all of them are unique in their own way. Yes, that sounds cheesy, but it’s true; what the pilot does so well is establish each of their relationships, each of their mindsets, and each of their places in Dillon.

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The Walking Dead “Live Bait” Live Blog/Review (4×06)

17 Nov

627

All times central.

8:02-I don’t know why, but the idea of the Governor in a tent makes me laugh.

8:07-I guess watching the Governor as more of a human being is actually more interesting than seeing him as a cartoonish villain. I really hope we get to see that other side of him here; we saw a sliver of it with his daughter last season, but it ended up descending into craziness.

8:11-I fully expect the Governor to whip out an AK-47 and start shooting up the place.

8:22-Ah, folding your face out of sight, Governor. Symbolism!

8:24-These new girls are pretty attractive, I have to say.

8:25-So the show’s doing something really interesting here. Instead of rushing right into the clash with the prison, they’re delineating the Governor’s story and attempting to humanize him. I’ll have to wait to the end to see if it works out, but I think this illustrates an important aspect of the man’s current state of mind: he’s almost going through the motions, much as he was last year (obviously the situation is vastly different here, but still). It seems as if, as much power as he seemingly yielded last year, he’s really just a puppet to be manipulated. It may just be a weakness, but it’s a fatal one here.

8:33-This must be the story of how the Governor decided to shave.

8:35-“What happened to your eye?” “It’s gone.”

8:36-This little girl and the Governor are a better fit for each other than Rick and Carl ever will be.

8:37-Off topic: I’m so excited for The Wolf of Wall Street.

8:42-“You can lose a lot of soldiers and still win the game.” Pretty heavy-handed reflection of the Governor’s situation there. Oh, also metaphors! Chess metaphors!

8:44-So the Governor’s starting to become attached to this family, especially to the daughter. When he smashes the guy’s head in, it’s not out of malice; it’s because he cares. I think the symbolism and connection to his own family is a bit overt here, and I just don’t buy the quick turnaround. Of course, that scene also shows that primal nature within him, but it just feels a little too saccharine now.

8:46-What’s up with all these fist bumps?

8:49-You can tell he doesn’t want to leave, but he’s the kind of guy that needs validation for everything he does; that’s why he indulged in his role as the Governor. He doesn’t necessarily want to help people now as much as he wants to satisfy himself. When his family died, he lost a big part of himself, and now, he’s essentially just looking for a fix.

8:56-That stuffed animal will give you power, Megan.

8:58-Oh man, these walker kills are pretty damn cool. Whether it be ripping out the throat or ripping a head off with a bone, I love it.

GRADE: B

THOUGHTS: So, this episode tries to humanize the Governor, and it only sometimes works; the thing is, I feel like the ambition of the writers here ultimately hurts the episode. It’s a necessary transition piece, but the interactions with the three girls are so on the nose and the metaphors so overt that it gets a bit groan-inducing. However, I do like the change of pace and I admire the dedication of the writers to re-shaping this character.

Credit to AMC and The Walking Dead for all pictures. I own nothing.

 

Parks and Recreation “Filibuster/Recall Vote” Review (6×06/6×07)

14 Nov

Parks and Recreation - Season 6Leslie Knope isn’t much of an enigma; she’s an inherently good person with certain flaws, one of which is Eagleton. So, whether it be her intense hatred of the town from previous episodes or her determination to fight for their rights here, something’s eventually going to come around and bite her in the ass…maybe Ben Wyatt, as long as Leslie’s wearing roller skates. It’s his crazy sex fantasy, after all.

Surprisingly, she loses the recall vote, not because Eagleton has it out for her, but because she hurt her own chances. It’s a very good choice by the writers–I applaud them for breaking from the norm–that is sure to pave the way for some interesting stories down the road. In fact, I’m completely invested in whatever crusade of kindness that will undoubtedly follow; it’s a much more realistic scenario that, while still saccharine, opens the floodgates for character development.

Speaking of, I like how the writers are strengthening the interpersonal relationships, whether it be Leslie/Ben (in a very funny, drunken, tattoo-almost obtaining storyline in “Recall Vote”), Ron/Donna, Leslie/Ann, or April/Andy. These two episodes are full of small character moments amidst the hilarity that is, say, Ron and Donna playing Big Buck Hunter.

I don’t think the filibuster itself works, as it comes across as more of a straight up parody of Wendy Davis. It’s a storyline ripe with hilarious imagery and Leslie lusting over a margarita (“Democracy is like a cake. It’s layered, delicious, chocolate, and I want some.”), but neither this nor the Erinn Hayes celebrity lifestyle storyline amount to much (I did like “Thank you. It’s genetic and unattainable.”).

Still, it’s a very enjoyable hour that serves up the laughs while moving the show forward in an interesting direction.

GRADE FOR BOTH PARTS: B

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-The first episode is a nice sendoff for Tatiana Maslany, and it opens the door for future appearances. I would’ve liked to see a bit more, especially considering she seems to have great chemistry with Ann, but she still was a great presence and fit right in.

-Kristen Bell’s back!

-That interview does not touch “You’re On With Ron”. Still, “Yes, mostly it’s used for sitting. Put it by a table and eat a meal.”

-Sandwiches made with cookies. You know Andy so well, April.

-I’m happy we got Andy back for an episode. I’ve missed him.

-“I am not a sore loser. It’s just that I want to win, and when I don’t, I get furious. EMPLOYEE.”

-“Ann, you noble and poetic land mermaid.” Also, “Your brain is almost as perfect as your face.”

-“If I know anything about Rwanda, and I don’t, I bet it’s full of rich guys who’ll buy her whatever she wants.”

-I like Youtube videos of turtles and birds becoming friends, too.

-So the Larry thing is permanent now. “Larry, everyone is miserable, and you are only making it worse.”

-Ron is still great. “Start over and speak differently.” Also, “I regret everything.”

-“Eat my shorts, Jabronis. Knope out.” Best concession speech ever.

-Not even Lil’ Sebastien can cheer Leslie up. The shot of Leslie asleep on the bench and everyone looking through the window is priceless….or Leslie Buttface Hitler the Fourth.

-“Just remember kids, nothing gold can stay.”

-“Please back up two paces so I can physically destroy this machine.”

-I loved Ben holding the chainsaw while asking if there was anything to numb the pain.

-“C’mon now. You know I don’t give a ****.” Oh, Donna.

“Truly we did steal a toy from your pregnant friend.”

“My initials are private.” Also, Ron’s laugh.

-“It is Ms. Knope; it’s not Councilwoman Knope because that chapter of my life is already over.”

-The Buttercup and Westley costumes are great.

Credit to NBC and Parks and Recreation for all pictures. I own nothing.

 

 

 

Person of Interest “Endgame” Review (3×08)

13 Nov

627-28

ATTENTION EVERYBODY: HERE’S MY REVIEW OF THE NEW PERSON OF INTEREST-“THE CROSSING”…..https://polarbearstv.com/2013/11/19/person-of-interest-the-crossing-review-3×09/

Although Detective Carter doesn’t start off the series as a major character, this episode is a showcase for her in an increasingly excellent season. I’m blown away by the character work done for Carter, both by the writers and Taraji P. Henson. It would’ve been easy for the storyline to feel rushed and melodramatic, but it is anything but; the episode brilliantly portrays someone not only seeking revenge, but also gaining insight about the value of cooperation and morality. This progression is paralleled with the flashbacks, both conveying her growth in similar ways and tying the concept of family to her two situations.

When you get down to it, it’s amazing how deep a supporting cast the show has, especially in regards to the women. Shaw, Root, and Carter have all had showcases this season, and each of those episodes has been compelling and exciting.

Of course, the other link to that supporting cast is Fusco; it seems as if he’s at the natural end of his story, but it’s disappointing that a complete arc for him is so much less developed than those for the other characters. Nevertheless, this episode does a nice job of emphasizing that Carter-Fusco relationship and the trust they share.

All in all, this is a fast-paced episode that barrels into a breathless cliffhanger; there are two episodes left this year, and both look to be great.

GRADE: A-

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-“Wait, that’s my grenade launcher?”

-I love that scene. I like how Finch immediately assumes the person in the video is Shaw.

-Alonzo Quinn is chilling to watch; he’s calm and collected, but he can be ruthless and is willing to do what’s necessary for personal gain.

-Bear?

-Elias is always magnificent. “Let it simmer for fifteen minutes, then stir with vinegar.”….basically a recipe for this episode, wouldn’t you say?

Credit to CBS and Person of Interest for all pictures. I own nothing.

New Girl “Menus” Review (3×08)

12 Nov

627-29Well, it looks like the show is on a groove. This week marks the second Coach episode, and it’s one of the funniest episodes to date. I’ve seen some grumblings about Coach, but I wouldn’t be so quick to jump the gun. First of all, Damon Wayans Jr. is absolutely hilarious. Second, on a character level, the show has a fantastic opportunity here; it’s just a matter of how well it’s executed.

Coach isn’t just a new presence in the loft; he’s flashier and more experienced. So far, we’ve seen him give advice to the others and call them out when they need it, and it’s a welcome change because these aren’t people that normally venture out of their comfort zones. We saw Winston stand up for himself last week due to Coach’s teasing, and that’s essentially what Coach does: he’s over the top, but it’s that personality that the others look up to. Coach fitting in better could cause Winston to reevaluate his place in the group and work to achieve something.

Do I wish Winston had more to do before? Yes. However, given the situation with his character, I feel like expanding on the Winston-Coach dynamic would help him. The writers haven’t wanted to expand on his relationships with the others, so this is the best we have. I really, really hope it leads somewhere other than Winston’s regular superfluous side stories.

As for the rest of the episode, Zooey Deschanel does amazing work as Conservation Jess, conveying the frustration of the situation and the traits that make her who she is. Her hot dog speech is comedy gold, as well as her anger at the restaurant owner as he’s closing the door (“I’m gonna burn down your building! I won’t do that, I won’t do that.”). As for Nick, I love seeing him interact with Coach; their dumpling fight is the best thing ever.

GRADE: A-

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-“You’ll be able to see your abs.” “I thought God just didn’t give me those.”

-“What’s up, Jason Street?” Oh man, this FNL reference makes my week.

-“I ain’t a quitter. IRONSIDE!”

-“Remember when you sat out that game because you were sad?” “I was also cold.”

-Ghostbusters sign.

-“I’m old-fashioned, Coney Island fat strong.”

-“Are you a doer or a dumpling-er?”

-Jess’s reaction to compliments is adorable.

-“PEANUTS stands for ‘Physical Education Activity Nuts!”

Credit to FOX and New Girl for all pictures. I own nothing.

Friday Night Lights “Tomorrow Blues” Review (3×13)

12 Nov

627-25High school is a transition phase; people have to decide what the first step in their futures should be, and it’s therefore understandable that the process would be ripe with indecision. This episode is just as much about second-guessing as it is about moving forward.

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