Category Archives: Television

The Leftovers – “Cairo” – Review

Leftovers“Hush little baby, don’t you cry,
You know your mother was born to die
All my trials, Lord, soon be over
Too late my brothers, too late”
– “All My Trials” – Odetta

Last Sunday, The Leftovers, aired its eighth episode of the season, ‘Cairo’. Now that the powers-that-be over at HBO have given it a season 2 green light, I watch the show with a different mindset, thinking about how the characters actions now will affect their future beyond the tenth episode finale. ‘Cairo’ had some very good acting and some memorable scenes as well (that last scene was typical for this show and had my jaw on the floor). I must have watched the final five minutes a dozen times. I wonder how Kevin will react going forward?

We did learn a few things in Sunday’s episode that I thought were over and done with. For example, I actually thought that Kevin got his shirts from the dry cleaner a few episodes back, now we know he hung them out to dry in a forest in one of his crazed, late-night stupors. This means that Kevin did not need to go nuts on that dry-cleaner. Kevin is suffering from sporadic amnesiac moments where he loses bits of time here and there, but the big revelation, I thought, was what Patti revealed about Dean. In a moment of comedic relief, Patti exclaims that she is adept at researching people and how easily you can find just about anything about anyone, but has failed to find one thing about the ‘dog-killer’. “He is a ghost”, she says to Kevin, making Dean’s presence a lot more bewildering. Is he a guardian angel? Is he something else supernatural? I love the mystery surrounding this character and his relation to Kevin and can’t wait to get more scenes involving the two.

Jill’s downhill trajectory was a concern going into this episode and she hasn’t wavered in the slightest. Her friendship with Aimee seemed, oddly enough, to be the only anchor keeping her moored to the land of sanity (if Mapleton could be considered that). Jill wants to be ‘ok’, but she doesn’t believe that an ‘ok’ life is attainable after the SD. She constantly prods Nora at dinner to see if she still carries a gun with her wherever she goes. One of the twins said it best when he said that if they find the gun in Nora’s home, then it means having a life that is normal, free from the clutches the SD imposed, is unattainable. Ironically, they find Nora’s handgun in a toy box named “Trouble”. I like Jill’s scenes as they give us a glimpse into a life of a troubled teen post SD. I constantly find myself saying out loud “No, don’t do it” a lot whenever I see Jill about to do something ridiculous and/or dangerous. …like none of you say things out loud while watching TV…no?…just me?…oh. I honestly thought at the end it was Aimee that Megan was opening the door to, and after seeing who it really was I immediately said, “No, Why did you do it!” I can’t wait to see where that story goes from here.

Megan and Laurie was another interesting story this past Sunday. I love how the we get more depth to each character little by little, each episode. It’s really interesting to see how the smallest bit of history we learn makes such a big impact. Learning about Megan’s mother’s passing the day before October 14th explains a lot about her choices throughout the season. The Rev doesn’t miss an opportunity to put this kind of information into one of his fliers either. One thing I thought was very interesting was the look that Megan gave Laurie right after Laurie slapped her and got up. Megan had a small smirk on her face that makes me think there is a lot more to her that we have yet to learn. Almost like her relationship with Laurie is mirroring Dean’s strange relationship with Kevin. Could there be similarities between Megan and Dean? Maybe they truly are guardian angels and are watching their work grow and make progress. Maybe I am reading too much into that smile? Either way, I think there is more to it than what we have seen so far.

The episode began with Patti laying out clothes on the floor of the church. She laid them out as if picking out outfits for someone to wear the next day for school, complete with shoes and some accessories. It is not until near the end of the episode that we understand what is going on. Laurie meets some delivery men at the church dropping off a trailer full of large bags that the GR Members bring into the room where the clothes are on the ground. We can piece together what is going on through the various cryptic messages we see and here throughout the episode. I imagine those bags are either filled with “Loved One” models of the departured or actual bodies. As creepy as I think the GR and its member are, actual bodies wouldn’t keep for very long at all…unless the GR wants to truly make their mark on Mapleton. Whichever way they choose, I think they are going to dress them in the clothes they had on before they departed and display them in some fashion. I think this is what is meant by the message on the whiteboard at the GR office – “We Won’t Let Them Forget”. This is why the GR exists, right? According to Patti they strip themselves of all colorful diversions – which is why they wear all white. They get rid of all ties to the living world – love and hatred – which explains why they leave their families (this also explains the “There Is No Family” mantra Patti was spewing a few episodes back to Kevin) and also why they don’t speak. We learn from Patti that her fellow members want their lives, and also deaths apparently, to have meaning and purpose. This, in the final scenes, is what we learn in more detail through Patti’s conversation with Kevin.

The final scene between Kevin and Patti is one of the best of this season. Their final conversation brought to light so many answers to questions that have been looming since episode one. Patti’s last words to Kevin, especially her recitation of the W.B. Yeats’ poem, spoke volumes. She said this enough times, “You must understand”, almost as much to Kevin as she was to us, the audience. She wanted Kevin to ‘understand’ why she matters – why Laurie matters – and essentially, why The Guilty Remnant matters. The poem that Patti recites is the second stanza of, ‘Michael Robartes Bids His Beloved Be At Peace, by W.B. Yeats. The poem illustrates a farewell to love and also life. Did Patti know she was going to die, whether at the hands of Kevin or herself? Either way, she will be missed.

This was one of my favorite episodes of The Leftovers so far. Ann Dowd’s ‘Patti’ will surely be missed. I would love to know what everyone thought about the episode and the incredible use of symbolism and imagery throughout. Only one more episode until the finale!

Thoughts and Discussion

- The music from this episode:

“I’ve Got Dreams To Remember” – Otis Redding
“I Been Buked” – Alvin Ailey

- Did you notice…The title of Sunday’s episode, ‘Cairo’, is also the word we hear uttered into Kevin’s walkie talkie in his dream sequence from episode seven’s ‘Solace For Tired Feet’. Also, ‘Cairo’, was in the title of an article in the National Geographic Kevin Sr. gave Kevin Jr. in the same episode.

- Did you notice…Laurie sat in Patti’s desk chair near the end of the episode as if the creators were showing us that she is the new ‘Patti’, the new leader of the Guilty Remnant. It looked like she settled in there nicely too. Did she know that Patti was not coming back somehow?

- I think it’s time we all start to discuss theories for the show and the final two episodes. Could this past episode have been a dream sequence by Kevin? The song that plays while when we go back and forth between Patti in the church laying out clothes and Kevin setting the table for his dinner with Nora and his family is Otis Redding’s, ‘I’ve Got Dreams To Remember’. Hmmmm? What do you all think? I thought that was pretty interesting.

- Also, I’m glad Kevin found his shirts…hanging up like spectral beings floating in the wind. Incidentally, Cairo, NY is about 5 hours from Mapleton. Did Kevin drive all that way while having one of his ‘amnesiac episodes’ to put his shirts there? And wouldn’t he have noticed that the shirts he frightened the dry cleaner into giving him a few episodes back didn’t have the Mapleton Police insignia on the sleeves?

- And lastly…I found it strange that Patti could not find any info about Dean and, as a result, refers to him as a ghost. Dean then corrects her by referring to himself as a ‘guardian angel’. Is he really a guardian angel along with Megan being Laurie’s? Help me out here everyone, we have some theories to disprove, lol.

- I read the whole poem that Patti recites and you can see ideas relating to the end of times and the apocalypse. The line Patti says, “And hiding their tossing manes and their tumultuous feet”, refers to a section in an earlier part of the poem about four different horses…The Four Horseman Of The Apocalypse, perhaps.

- With Patti gone, will we ever find out who ‘Neil’ is and if that was his house she left a paper bag of her own feces at? Is that Patti’s, “Dear One”? Or is her “Dear One” someone else? (“Dear One” is a phrase, or term of endearment, from the other show I currently Review – The Strain)

- What exactly did Patti mean that Laurie would be ready soon? Is there going to be some big ‘Jonestown’ Mass Suicide event on the horizon with the Guilty Remnant?

Thank you for checking out my Review! Only two more days until the penultimate episode! Please comment below so we can discuss this episode and your ideas for what might happen in the final two! Have a great weekend everyone!

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Crusher Creel aka Absorbing Man Comes to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

A new villain will be coming to the Marvel cinematic universe via the television show Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Actor Brian Patrick Wade will be playing Carl “Crusher” Creel, also known as the Absorbing Man. He’ll make his debut in the season premiere Tuesday, September 23 at 9pm on ABC.

With his ability to absorb the properties of anything he touches, Creel will put Coulson and his team through their paces when their second season kicks off.

He’s the latest in numerous additions to the series including Adrianne Palicki (Bobbi Morse, a.k.a. Mockingbird), Lucy Lawless (Agent Isabelle Hartley), Reed Diamond (Daniel Whitehall), Nick Blood (Lance Hunter), Henry Simmons (Alphonso “Mack” Mackenzie), and Kyle MacLachlan (Skye’s father).

brian patrick wade absorbing man

BOOM! Studios Gets a First-Look Deal With 20th Century Fox TV

comics-boom-studios-logoWill BOOM! be the next publisher to get a push on television? BOOM! Studios has signed a first-look deal at 20th Century Fox TV for broadcast and cable projects. That mean’s the studio’s writers and producers will have access to BOOM!’s original series and their imprints such as KaBOOM!, Archaia and BOOM! Box.

BOOM! Founder and CEO Ross Richie and President of Development Stephen Christy will serve as executive producers on any projects developed with 20th TV, and the company plans to hire a development executive focused solely on television.

The comic publisher has already developed Unthinkable with the studio and the series has a put pilot commitment. Unthinkable is by Mark Sable and Julian Totino Tedesco.

This year the publisher is set to produce 29 new original series, which adds to its library of over 120 IP. Next year, that increases to 35 original series, which gives them the largest library of “owned and controlled original comic book series” outside of Marvel and DC. There’s currently over a dozen series either premiering this fall or being worked on for television, so anything from BOOM! will enter a crowded market.

This is on top of the existing deal BOOM! has with 20th Century Fox to make movies.

(via Deadline)

Why Mockingbird is a Great Fit for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

palickiAgents of S.H.I.E.L.D. hit the gates last year full of momentum from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but perhaps too high on expectations. Inside of the shared universe, it faced stiff competition to meet the same level as the blockbuster movies while still maintaining the distinctly different world of television. In a certain sense, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. resembled something like an expansion draft for a professional sports team. There was the well-known though not as gifted veteran (Coulson) and a group of mostly unknowns. The story line was nothing special, especially in the televised world where we get movie-like experiences on a weekly basis from a number of television series (think Breaking Bad) and the production value while impressive from a television series, was still not what we expected coming from the Avengers or Iron Man. There were some notable guests stars, but to go back to the expansion team analogy, this is more akin to the new team advertising for other team’s stars rather that its own. With the news that Adrianne Palicki is joining the group (on a part-time basis for now) as the relatively well-known character Mockingbird, this signifies something else. To continue with the analogy, Palicki/Mockingbird is like the first signing of a major free agent.

There are two aspects to this signing, as it relates first to Palicki and then to Mockingbird. Palicki is well enough known to fans of television, though she has never really had a breakout role. Perhaps she is better known to comic fans as being the star of the never aired Wonder Woman series, which never got past a failed pilot. While comic fans can have a tendency to be overly picky in some regards, they also tend to stay loyal to actors and actresses who willingly portray themselves in roles that others might think to be too “geeky”.  In the realms of comics, sci-fi and fantasy, otherwise unknown names like Alan Tudyk or Summer Glau elicit at least recognition and more likely fandom (in this case because of their association with Firefly/Serenity). Palicki is likely not to that level of cult status, but she is well known due to Wonder Woman as well as appearances on Smallville and in G.I. Joe.

mockWhile this might perhaps bode well for her acceptance as an actress in the series, there is also the consideration of the character Mockingbird. One might be able to argue that Phil Coulson is kind of a member of the Avengers (at least as much as Jarvis is) but Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. seems to have been lacking a bit in superhero star power.  Mockingbird is by no means an A-list member of Marvel, but what she does bring is a degree of relevance and credibility which has been lacking in the series. She is after all the first real Avenger from the comics to make it into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as a semi-regular.

This could mean more for the future of the Cinematic Universe as well. While it has not really been explored as of yet, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and other television series (such as the new Agent Carter series) have the potential to act as feeders for the films. One of the criticisms of the Avengers (and granted there were only a few) is that the team was primarily a boys’ club. It likely will be mostly for the second installment of the series as well, though with the addition of the Scarlet Witch to help balance things out a bit. With the upcoming Ant-Man film, it seems likely that the Wasp will also be joining the team. Might the same fate await Mockingbird? Unlike some actors or actresses that don’t tend to stray too far from either television or film, Palicki is at least somewhat of a crossover actress, having done both television and film to some degree. With the established credibility of Mockingbird as an Avengers character as well as eliminating the need for a background story (thanks to her appearance in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), she might be a perfect fit for a third Avengers movie, taking the total of female characters to four (unless we see Carol Danvers or Jennifer Walters at some point), and it might be done through the subtle addition of the characters into the shared universe.

Doing so helps not only the films but the television shows.  At the moment Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. seems light years away from a film like Guardians of the Galaxy, but with a bridge between the two, it allows the films to bring the shows to their level.  It might give fans of the show some hope, as well as providing a jumping on point for the more casual fans of the movie, all by way of a B-list actress and a mostly forgotten character.

Adrianne Palicki Joins Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

palickiIt’s being reported by The Hollywood Reporter that Adrianne Palicki, who rose to fame on Friday Night Lights, has been tapped to guest-star as superspy Bobbi Morse aka Mockingbird on Marvel‘s television series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. She will debut in the fifth episode of the series.

The debut of Mockingbird was teased by Patton Oswalt at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con.

Mockingbird is not only an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., but also an Avenger, so it’s a character that potentially bridges the television show and movies. She also for a time was married to Clint Barton aka Hawkeye played by Jeremy Renner in the movies.

Palicki is no stranger to shows based on comics. She was tapped to play Diana Prince/Wonder Woman in the David E. Kelly series that never made it past the pilot. She appeared on Smallville. In 2006 she was also in the Aquaman television movie (there was a television movie!?). She also has appeared in the second G.I. Joe movie, and listed for the third.


Powers Show Adds Two, Including the Lead

sharlto-copleyThe Playstation Network series Powers has added Sharlto Copley for the lead role. The show is based on the comic book series by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming.

Copley will play Christian Walker, a detective who once had super powers and now works with the law enforcement. His expertise is investigating crimes in the Powers community. Copley is best known for his lead role in District 9, but has also appeared in The A-Team, Elysium, Oldboy and Maleficent.

Also joining the series is Michelle Forbes who will play Retro Girl a star of the Powers community. Forbes has appeared in such shows as Star Trek: the Next Generation, 24, Battlestar Galactica, Homicide: Life on the Street, Prison Break, True Blood, The Killing, Orphan Black and more. She has a “comic” connection voicing Circe in the video game DC Universe Online.

The two join a cast that includes Eddie Izzard, Noah Taylor, Susan Heyward, Olesya Rulin, Max Fowler and Adam Godley.

The series is Playstation’s first attempt at scripted programming, something increasingly being added to video game networks.

The series is currently 10 episodes.

The Leftovers – Solace For Tired Feet – Review


After last week’s amazing episode of The Leftovers, where we learned more about Nora Durst and her daily life, the writers slow things down a little and it makes me wonder where they are going with the first season. There are only 2 episodes remaining until the first season finale and I am still not sure what the finish line is for the characters. Don’t get me wrong, every episode, in my opinion, has been great and I can’t get enough of this show. However, by this point in a season, shouldn’t we at least know what the end game is going to resemble? The good thing is that there were some revelations that cleared some things up, giving us answers to some questions we had. In this show,of course, with more answers there always seems to be twice as many questions springing up.

The best thing we learn from this episode is that Holy Wayne is two-timing the mothers of his unborn children (sorry, I can’t bring myself to typing ‘baby mamas’…oops). He seemed very out of sorts when he was speaking with Tom and I was a little confused as to where all of that came from. I suppose it is still nice to see that he cares for them and wants to make sure they have money to survive, but what does he actually think will transpire from all this? I would love to know everyone’s thoughts about Holy Wayne and his potential clan of children (I’m certain these were not the only two girls that are pregnant by him). And is the Asian thing a personal preference or is it necessary from a prophetic standpoint with him? I ‘m sure we will get more answers regarding him and his children soon as the season draws to a close and Christine having already given birth…by herself…in a bathtub…yikes.

I read an article that Damon Lindelof and his team of writers took time to come up with different scenarios for what people would do in a real life SD and apparently one was the scene with Jill and her gang of friends locking themselves in a refrigerator to honor some myth they heard about. I thought that scene was one of the best of the episode and was exactly what teenagers would do in a post SD world. Jill’s rebelliousness is growing more dangerous with each episode and I’m wondering how far she will go. Possibly joining a cult would be my guess. What do you all think Jill is headed towards?

Kevin’s scenes are, by far, the best and strangest in any episode. It’s difficult to tell what is real and what isn’t with him. The dream sequence this episode showed what could be foreshadowing with Laurie in the truck bed wrapped in plastic and bloody. There were quite a few GR members in the back of the truck actually and I wonder if something will happen where the towns people will take it upon themselves to eradicate Mapleton of their nuisance in white clothes.

The highlight of the episode was Kevin and his search for his father, who escaped from his facility. The writers continue to blur the line with certain scenes. Some have religious undertones while other serendipitous events could be viewed as happenstance. Take for example Kevin Sr. being in the right place at the right time to save his granddaughter, Jill. Are we to believe he just happened to be running through that part of the woods at the same moment Jill needed rescuing or is it possibly divine intervention? I am extremely looking forward to who “they” are that Kevin Sr. kept referring to when speaking with Kevin Jr. in the diner and why they have a subscription to National Geographic. If he had an iPad digital subscription he wouldn’t have had to go to Gabota to find a back issue either…jk. He says “they” were very specific and he needed to give Kevin Jr. the issue from May 1972. I looked up the issue and it is very interesting. Christine, in her slumber, mutters at one point in the episode about “There’s spiders under water” and one of the articles from 1972 is titled, “The Spider That Lives Underwater”. The next episode of The Leftovers is titled, “Cairo”, and another one of the articles is, “Cairo, Troubled Capital Of The Arab World”. It is all very cryptic and makes me look forward even more to the next episode to find any connection.

Thoughts and Discussion

- The songs in the episode are:
“The Love You Save” – Joe Tex
“Miserere Mei Deus” – by Maîtrise des Hauts-de-Seine & Gaël De Kerret

- I hope we find out what Holy Wayne’s girls mean when they say, “He’s the bridge”, very soon.

- The National Geographic story line is very intriguing, especially as it suggests that Kevin Sr. can commune with people that are not there. I wonder if the fact that the camera showed his reflection in the window for a moment menas he is in fact crazy and only speaking to himself. I would love to know what you all thought.

I hope you all enjoyed the episode! Please comment below to tell me what you thought and where you think the story is going.

Doctor Who: Deep Breath – TV Trailer

When the Doctor arrives in Victorian London, he finds a dinosaur rampant in the Thames and a spate of deadly spontaneous combustions.

Who is the new Doctor and will Clara’s friendship survive as they embark on a terrifying mission into the heart of an alien conspiracy? The Doctor has changed. It’s time you knew him.

Doctor Who Series 8 begins on Saturday, August 23rd.

Transformers: Beast Machines – The Complete Series Arrives September 2

image003This fall, fans of the highly popular Transformers classic animated adventures can relive the high-octane action of Optimus Primal and the Maximals through the complete series release of Transformers: Beast Machines.  In 1999, Transformers fans and kids were introduced to the television series Transformers: Beast Machines. This is the unforgettable chapter which Optimus Primal and his legions of Maximals must battle the powerful Megatron and his new army of Vehicons.

On September 2, 2014, Shout! Factory, in collaboration with Hasbro Studios, will release Transformers Beast Machines: The Complete Series on home entertainment shelves.  This highly anticipated complete series set features all 26 visually stunning episodes with special bonus content in a deluxe 4-DVD set. Whether reliving the childhood memory or discovering this series for the first time, this is an essential home collection for every fan, collectors and entire family to complete their TRANSFORMERS home entertainment library. Transformers Beast Machines: The Complete Series is priced to own at $29.93 SRP.

When the Maximals return to their home planet of Cybertron, they find that everything has changed. Cybertron seems to have been abandoned… that is, except for the Vehicon drones policing the planet! To make the matter worse, the MaximalsS discover that they’ve been infected with a virus that threatens to wipe them out, unless they can adapt.  Enter the world of the Bast Machines!

DVD set includes commentaries and interviews with series developer Marv Wolfman, story editor Robert N. Skir, voice director Susan Blu and voice actor David Kaye.

TV Review: The Strain S1E5 Runaways

the-strain-logo1The Strain‘s fifth episode quickly gets us caught up on Abraham’s history, and how he knows so much about what’s going on. We’re also shown some of the survivors, and how they’re handling their transformation, which is to say… not well.

The episode dances around the various forces gathering, both good and evil, but it’s success and strength lays with the interactions and learning more about everyone. This is the first episode where Eph and Abraham team up, learning from each other about what’s going on. It’s interesting mixing a man of science and the other who has seen horrors first hand. There’s also Dr. Martinez who we learn a bit more about her mother.

As a whole, the episode has a nice mix of action and scares. What it has a ton of also is heart. The center and strength of the story is the individuals and their lives. That what keeps the show going, and sets it apart from just being another show with vampires.

Five episodes in, and this is the strongest episode so far of a series that’s getting better as it goes along.

Overall Score: 8

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