Category Archives: tv

2015 Favorites; 2016 Resolutions

Lord almighty! I cannot believe 2016 is upon us already! Honestly, 2015 was a bit of a challenge for me. I’m happy for the lessons I’ve learned this year, but I would be lying if I wasn’t excited for 2016. I hope for me and my family that it is a good year; it seems the recent years have been a bit of a challenge for us. I’m also looking forward to finally accomplishing some goals in 2016, but more on that later.

First, a bit of fun. Below, I’ve compiled a list of my favorite movies, music, books, and TV shows of 2015. Not all of them were released in 2015, but I encountered them this year.

Here we go!

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Favorite movie: (A TIE!) Jurassic World and No Escape.

2015 was a year of nostalgia: Star Wars launched a new trilogy, The Hunger Games ended, and Jurassic Park’s reboot, for me, started it all. I was never a huge fan of dinosaurs and Jurassic Park wasn’t a series I was entirely devoted to until recently. Frankly, I was more loyal to the classic adventures I grew up with (Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and James Bond). However, to pay tribute to the great Steven Spielberg, I decided to go to the reboot.

I. Was. Not. Disappointed!

What especially caught my attention was Chris Pratt’s devotion to his Indiana-Jones-like-dinosaur-trainer: a character who was full of heart but a total “badass” (as one of the nephews put it).

Whether you’re a Jurassic Park fan or not, I strongly encourage you to see Jurassic World. The plot is well done, the action is gripping, and the nostalgia is purely palpable.

Speaking of badass movies, No Escape was probably my most favorite film of 2015. When I first watched the trailers, I thought I’d pass on the movie. However, what got me into the theaters was Owen Wilson; it was a first to see him in a serious, action-packed role (vs a comedy like Zoolander) and I wanted to see how well he did. I will tell you: he did not disappoint in the least!

Furthermore, No Escape brings up an issue that not everyone thinks about: monopoly in a third-world country. The cause of the uprising in the unnamed South-East Asia country is, put plainly, a first-world country taking control of their resources. Owen Wilson is unknowingly a part of this takeover and he puts his family in the center of it.

No Escape is certainly action-packed and very violent, as an uprising would be. The pace of the plot is wonderful: fast enough to keep the heart pounding, but it slows down at the appropriate points when Owen Wilson discovers exactly what his employers have been up to. I definitely suggest seeing it.


 

Favorite song: Lost Stars, sung by Adam Levine.

Lost Stars is an original song found in the movie Begin Again with Kiera Knightley and Mark Ruffalo. It was nominated in the 2015 Academy Awards for Best Original Song, which was well deserved (however, it did lose to Glory). The lyrics of the song are poetic and entirely soul-felt. I doubt there is a person in the world who wouldn’t identify with the story it weaves.

The chorus alone gives me chills as the song builds in its ballad:

“And God, tell us the reason youth is wasted on the young.
It’s hunting season and the lambs are on the run,
Searching for meaning.
But are we all lost stars trying to light up the dark?”

 

Another astounding thing: this song stands apart. It complements Begin Again, but it’s a song you can put your own meaning, your own story to. It’s universal.


 

Favorite book: Welcome to Night Vale

Oh, Night Vale. Ever since I started listening to the famous podcast, around two years ago, my love for Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor’s “quiet desert community” has grown. I was SO FLIPPING EXCITED to delve into their novel that expanded beyond Cecil’s narration. What’s even better is how the podcast mentions the events of the novel here and there, only being blunt about its existence in the novel excerpt clip above. (I think a few episodes ago Cecil mentioned “that King City fiasco.”)

God, Night Vale will always be one of my most favorite works of creation EVER. AND THEY’RE COMING OUT WITH THREE BOOKS NEXT YEAR!! AHH!

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*cough* Anyways–


 

Favorite TV shows: Supernatural and Expedition Unknown
Ok. Yes. I couldn’t let the new year begin without mentioned my TWO MOST FAVORITE TV SHOWS!! (Seriously. Go check out my Tumblr: Supernatural is almost all I reblog; and I’m always fangirling over Josh Gates in my various social platforms.)

Supernatural has, and always will be, my top favorite show. There’s a reason why it’s currently airing season 11. For most people, it has to do with the brotherly relationship between Sam and Dean Winchester. However, while I do love the Winchester brothers, they aren’t my favorite characters. Castiel, Gabriel, Lucifer, and Balthazar are. In short, I love how they weave known mythology into the show and put twists on it. Especially ever since season 4, I’ve absolutely adored the angel mythology. Supernatural is the only medium that writes angels the way I believe they should be written (except for the “angels are dicks” thing, because, let’s face it: they aren’t).

I’ve especially loved how season 11 is feeling a lot like season 5. They’re focusing on Biblical mythology again and are bringing back well-loved characters for cameos (Lucifer just appeared in the most recent episode: “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” EEK!)

My second favorite TV show has to be Expedition Unknown. I’m a legend junkie with a passion for traveling and exploring cultures. However, I do like where I live… and I don’t want to travel nearly as much as Josh Gates does. Frankly, two-five trips a year will do me good.

But I love seeing what new adventures Josh Gates gets himself into. From searching for Amelia Earhart’s remains to investigating the True Cross of Christ, Josh Gates is always bringing new things to talk about on his show. He brings us along as he rock climbs, scuba dives, and crawls through caves.

In May this year, I met him for the second time and it’s only made me more adamant to watch his show. He is kind-hearted, brave, a joker, and so passionate about his job. Literally, it’s like he’s our Universe’s Indiana Jones.

He’s my role model… and I don’t think I’ll ever stop watching Expedition Unknown.


So that’s my list of 2015 favorites. Honestly, my head is kind of buzzing right now from the processing overload! But my Goodbye to 2015 post isn’t complete until I divulge in my 2016 resolutions. After all, it’s traditional to have goals for the new year, not to mention a good thing to do to keep procrastination at bay.

My plans for 2016 remain the same as they have for the past few years:

  1. Lose 50 pounds; feel healthy and capable of anything!
  2. Finish my first novel and get it put out into the world.

However, I do have goals for my social media profiles: I would like to keep to a schedule. Update my blog weekly, my Youtube videos every two weeks, and post to my Facebook page daily. Especially concerning the content of this blog, I would love to write more reviews; consider this 2015 recap the beginning of said reviews!

So, have a Happy New Year duckies. Say a generous thanks to 2015 and grasp 2016 by the hand — it’s almost here!

 

 

 

 

SUPERNATURAL IS BACK BABY!

Guys! Guys! It’s here! Oh my Chuck, IT. IS. HERE!!

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Supernatural’s 11th season premiered last Wednesday — and, boy, is the show as rocking as ever!

I mean, I will admit since season 5 the show hasn’t held me like it did. Even if there were some pretty intense moments. However, season 11 looks like it may be going back to the old routes: a massively scary boss that seems impossible to beat, Sam and Dean reevaluating their tactics (and actually talking!), Team Free Will pushed to the edge, the world at risk.

Yes we’ve had those themes before. But, frankly, the Leviathan and Purgatory arcs didn’t hold my attention quite like Lucifer. (Me, the angel fangirl. Of course that would be my favorite season!)

I’m looking forward to what they’ll be doing. [Slight spoiler] but they’ve been referencing the archangels here and there, both in 10’s finale and 11’s premiere. Dare I say it? We might be seeing Gabe, Luci, and Michael again! Maybe they’ll be in multiple episodes? Maybe Adam will finally escape The Cage?

Ok. That’s a spoiler-free as I can make this post. It’s a quickie, too.

I’m excited to see what the show does this season. There’s a lot at stake for Team Free Will. Even in the first episode was it intense. Jeeez. *bites nails*

Catch the promo for 11×2:

And catch Season 11’s trailer:

Reign "Acts of War" **RAPE TRIGGER WARNING + SPOILERS**

Okay. So. Wow. I just finished watching Reign’s “Act of War”. And let me tell you: this show keeps surprising me. In the beginning of the first season, I was passively intrigued in the story of Mary Queen of Scots. I felt like it was a “teeny-bopper” show, as I call it; that it was geared towards teens and would have a light plot. Nothing too complicated. Nothing too gruesome. Just Mary trying to figure out if she should marry Francis or not. Even though we know by historical records that she did.

But this show keeps pushing boundaries! It has mentioned murder, bdsm, blackmailing, miscarriage, death, mysticism, affairs, and now–

[TRIGGER WARNING: I’m going to be talking about rape in the next paragraph.]

— they’ve had Mary get raped. Long story short: Mary was jostled from sleep when Protestant assassins barged into her room dressed as the King’s Guards. They held her at knife-point until they realized that Francis was no longer in the castle. The father of the Protestant minister who had been killed steps up to kill Mary. And then he decides to do something worse: rape her. I won’t go into the details of what happened because I think everyone knows what that action entails. But they did show enough on Reign to let the viewers know what happened to her.

Mary strikes one of the Protestant assassins left to kill her when the others leave. And she races down the hallway in her nightgown, looking stunned and disheveled: the most notable mark is that her gown is ripped at the collar. Catherine finds her, dismisses the guards, and takes her to her room. Then you start to see the welling on her arms and neck. Mary stands strong, acting ever the Queen, until Catherine asks her if she was raped. (It had been established in the storyline that Catherine was raped before she became Queen herself — so Catherine knew Mary’s actions intimately)

And–just–well, let me show you this powerful scene. JEEZ.


Adelaide Kane and Megan Follows are FANTASTIC ACTRESSES. Jeez. Just. Jeez. I mean, I already knew Megan Follows was because of Anne of Green Gables. But. OMG. Wow.

Check out the Winter Finale, “Mercy”, airing December 18th:

Amazing Spider-Man 2: Favorite scenes.

So, instead of updating my Transformers fic or working on my novel, I took the time to watch my favorite scenes in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 this afternoon. It was worth it. I just… I absolutely love this movie. And what comic book/superhero movies are developing in to.

I’m not really going to analyze these scenes, I’m just pointing them out. Although I do suggest you watch the ENTIRE movie (and Amazing Spider-Man 1) to get the context. Especially with Peter Parker and Gwen’s relationship.

Ever since I was a little girl, I always, always, always loved three genres: action-adventure, romance, and a little drama (though movies like Milo and Otis still haunt me *shudders*) And as I grew into an adult, suspense movies were added to my list of favorite genres.

Now, Amazing Spider-Man doesn’t really have horror. But it is continuing to change the game of villain’s character developments. There are three villains in ASM 2.

First up is Aleksei Sytsevich (later becoming the notorious bad guy, Rhino) played by the AMAZING Paul Giamatti. *squeal*

*cough* Anyways–

Heheehe!! I absolutely LOVE that action sequence. Just… *gestures wildly* DELICIOUS.
But Rhino is not the main villain of ASM 2. He only appears at the beginning, and at the very end of the movie.
Elector and Harry Osborn (The Green Goblin) both have interesting M.O.’s throughout the movie.
We first meet Electro in that clip above. Max Dillon (played by Jaime Foxx) is an electrician at Oscorp. And… as you can see, he’s ignored. By everyone. At least until he meets Spidey and, later, Gwen Stacy. He naturally becomes obsessed with the blue-and-red superhero. And when he gets superpowers of his own (from an unfortunate accident involving eels), he looks to Spider-Man for help.

The music playing underneath the battle sequence just beautifully adds to the scene (called “My Enemy”). Dialogue, character development. And, of course, action. It almost makes you wonder: if the cop hadn’t taken the shot, would Electro and Spidey be allies? A brilliant “What if–?” moment!
And, finally, here’s a personally heart-wrenching scene.
For those that haven’t seen the movie (and care about spoilers), I issue a
 
***SPOILERS BELOW***
 
Gwen Stacy’s death.
The Spidey fandom theorized that Gwen would die in this movie. And, boy, I wish they were wrong. But I had a nagging instinct that this was going to happen. This scene still beautifully tugs at my heart. Good God. I was literally sitting here, crying, AGAIN at Andrew Garfield’s performance.
What is absolutely a killer is how they draw it out. They make you think “Oh, no. She’s fine. Just knocked out.” And then, AND THEN, you see the blood…
Shit.
I mean, YOU SEE IT. RIGHT IN HER EYES. As she’s falling, SHE KNOWS. SHE KNOWS PETER WON’T CATCH HER IN TIME.
GAHHHH. Just–*feels* EVERY. FREAKING. TIME.
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Yeah. I’ll be over here. In the corner. Crying.
I really, really look forward to Amazing Spider-Man 3. It’s hard to say goodbye to Gwen. BUT I’m excited to see what they do with Mary Jane, and the future of the franchise. (Maybe we’ll even get Spidey teaming up with Avengers? PLEEEEEASE??!)

DOCTOR WHO SEASON 8 IN ONE WEEK!!


This. This was when we last saw The Doctor. Christmas night, 2013. Matt Smith, in one blink, became Peter Capaldi. The Eleventh Doctor became Twelve. Our hearts were shattered. But our curiosity was peaked.

And the question that has been on Whovian’s minds ever since: What will Peter Capaldi do as Twelve?

For those that are new to the world of Doctor Who, here is a basic premise (courtesy of Doctor Who’s Wikipedia page):

“Doctor Who is a British science-fiction television programme produced by the BBC. The programme depicts the adventures of the Doctor, a Time Lord—a time-travelling humanoid alien. He explores the universe in his TARDIS, a sentient time-travelling space ship. Its exterior appears as a blue British police box, which was a common sight in Britain in 1963 when the series first aired. Along with a succession of companions, the Doctor faces a variety of foes while working to save civilisations, help ordinary people, and right wrongs.”

It is honestly one of my most favorite television shows. And well worth it to watch.

I had grown to love Matt Smith as The Doctor. His quirky take on the character was, in short, amazing. I remember hearing someone describe Eleven as a genius professor and a five-year-old in a 2,000 year old body. And it was absolutely true. Matt had this astounding way of combining Eleven’s excitement with an air that showed he was also fantastically more than he seemed. That there were years–thousands of years— of experience. And in Season 6’s “A Good Man Goes To War“, that Eleven can sometimes be… almost wrathful.

This next video does have major spoilers for Season 5 and 6… but you get a sense of what I mean. I absolutely LOVE Eleven’s story arc!! And the person who made this video is right, he is a badass!

It seems that in the new trailer for Peter Capaldi’s Twelve (Deep Breath is set to air next Saturday! EEK!) has The Doctor going on a more… vengeful, but want to fix things, streak. Which I’m excited to see. I really liked that about Eleven. That he had this whole reputation about him as Earth’s protector. At least 50 years under his belt (according to the show’s start date). But probably more. And for most aliens that wanted to harm us, that alone would send them fleeing.
I’m really excited to see what Steven Moffat (the writer of Who) and Peter Capaldi do this season. Partly because the show has been off-air since the Christmas episode in 2013. But also because I think Peter Capaldi will bring back some of the older episodes of Who. Where it was just good-fighting-bad. I will admit they seemed to lean into the romance aspect of Doctor Who a lot during Eleven’s run. Buuut… being a hopeless romantic, I didn’t really mind it that much.
It must’ve been because of Matt Smith’s dashing good looks. *wink*
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Oh… Oh sorry David. I mean–well–*cough*
Anyways, here’s the trailer for Deep Breath. I’M SO EXCITED FOR THE 23RD!!!

Masters of Sex: Fight

For a very long time now, I have been a fan of Michael Sheen.

Yes, this goofy guy right here:

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For those new to the world of Michael Sheen, you might recognize him as Aro in the Twilight Saga. You know, this guy:

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Other people know him as Lucian from Underworld. But, personally, he first caught my eye as an actor when he played Tony Blair. Actually, he’s played him several times. But I remember seeing him as Mr. Blair in The Queen (2006) and The Special Relationship (2010).
I couldn’t really say as to why I started honing in on him. Not back then. And I still can’t really say now. It’s just one of those things: where an actor is so memorable that he is imprinted on your mind. 
And it’s a requirement to watch everything he’s in. 
I always talk about Johnny Depp or Tom Hiddleston in this way. But rarely do I talk about Michael Sheen. Even though he’s included in that mental category. 
I’ve been watching Masters of Sex since it premiered last year. Even if I miss episodes, I make an effort to watch everything I’ve missed. I will admit my draw to the television show was because I knew Michael Sheen was playing the lead. I knew nothing about Lizzy Caplan, Dr. William Masters, or Virginia Johnson. I only knew that I wanted to watch this series on Showtime because Michael Sheen was in it. 
So I sat down to watch it, one evening, on September 29, 2013. I anxiously awaited to see Michael Sheen… and also what this show was about. (Bonus: it takes place in the 1950s, which equals more interest with me.)
Turns out Masters of Sex is about these two people who are interested in how the human body responds… while having sex. Dr. Masters has always been interested, and Virginia Johnson needed a job as a secretary. The series goes on to delve deeper into their characters: Virginia being a single mom, and Dr. Masters being a reluctant husband and soon to be father. It also deals with the social stigma of the time: specifically that sex is not studied, because it’s not talked about in society. It’s completely ignored. And doctors don’t know what to do when someone has issues with sexual reproduction. They just cut and snip and send them out the door. 
But not Dr. Masters (and, by extension Virginia Johnson). They understand human bodies. They understand sex. They have an interest in it. And they want the world to not be afraid of the subject. 
Anyways, long introduction. 
I was watching the most recent episode, entitled “Fight”… and I finished it literally fifteen minutes ago. (Yes, you read that time stamp right: it’s 3:15 in the morning). And… wow. My mind was blown. The amount of depth that the writers put into Bill and Virginia, the cinematography, and, most importantly, the acting between Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan. 
I am a little fuzzy, but around half of the episode (if not more) takes place in the hotel room that Bill and Virginia are sharing. The elements that happened before (and after) this scene affected the couple as they met again, for another “study”. Bill was uncharacteristically aggressive, and Virginia, being the ever nurturing soul, was trying to help him… but not put up with his bullshit, at the same time. You could tell these two cared for one another. But from the circumstances of life outside of the hotel room, they couldn’t admit it out right. (For one, Bill is married. Yeah.) 
But Virginia got the closest. She described a lover she had in the past. A boyfriend. Who had been a captain in an army. The “man” had claimed he was engaged, but supposedly the fiance ran off. Of course that’s not the case and he abandons Virginia to go back to said fiance. 
“What does that mean for us?” Bill asks. 
(It has been previously established that Bill and Virginia are posing as a married couple.) 
Virginia: (And this is a paraphrase) “Oh… I’d only marry a man who I love and desire.” 
And Bill in this episode is dealing about the memory of his father. Who abused him. This was established waaaay back in the show. But we have more depth into Bill’s back story now. Bill confides in Virginia that his father broke his nose once, and left him at a boarding school when he was only 14. And Bill never returned home. 
This is also a powerful step in their relationship because Bill doesn’t even confide in his own wife. He keeps everything bottled up inside. And yet, he feels so connected to Virginia that he opens up to her. And she listens. Unlike anyone else in his life. (Also Virginia stated in this episode that Bill basically respects her and listens to her. Take notes boys!) 
But the way these scenes come across is simply amazing. The tension between Bill and Virginia is absolutely palpable. The tension between their private life and the world around them… you can feel it. It’s just… wow. 
I really suggest you guys watch this TV show. It is nothing short of amazing. And, yes, it has A LOT of sexual content. So not for kids. But it’s worth your time. 
Check out the promo for season 1 below. It is graphic


Aaaand now I go to bed. Because brain = mush.