Tag Archives: the cw

Around the Tubes

Excalibur #1

It’s new comic book day! What’s everyone getting? What are you excited for? Sound off in the comments below. While you think about that, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup. While you wait for shops to open, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web.

Newsarama – CW’s Superman Promises ‘Secret Story,’ Invokes Reeve & Kidder Confirming New Series – Interesting. They’ve been good in the roles so far.

The Beat – Turmoil at Heavy Metal as new owners take over – UPDATED – The publisher hasn’t had their act together for some time.

Reviews

Comics Bulletin – The Amazing Mary Jane #1
Newsarama –
Excalibur #1

Around the Tubes

Batwoman

It’s a new week! We’ve got lots of news and reviews coming as we focus in on the end of the year and holidays. While you think about all of that, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

How to Love Comics – IKEA Comic Book Storage Solutions [2020 Catalog Edition] – Some good solutions here.

Newsarama – CW Orders Nine More Batwoman Episodes For Season One – Cool.

Reviews

Austin Chronicle – The Hard Tomorrow
Talking Comics –
Marauders #1
Austin Chronicle –
The River at Night

TV Review: Batwoman S1E4 Who Are You?

Batwoman

Batwoman fourth episode has a bit of a different focus as it shifts into the bad guy of the week territory. That tends to be the formula for The CW DC-based shows and generally has become predictable and a tad bit repetitive.

Magpie is the new villain and she comes off as a second rate Catwoman. Her entire focus is stealing jewelry and it isn’t until the end that there’s any depth to the character.

The bigger focus of the episode is Kate attempting to balance her life as Batwoman and her personal goings on. She’s dating but has issues dealing with that and donning the cape.

There’s potential here as far as the show goes is the greatest. There’s some solid territory to mine and it’s something for Batman that no films have really dived into well.

There are some revelations about what Katherine has been hiding and she’s forced to admit things to Kate’s dad. It adds to the chance that Alice is telling the truth about her being Kate’s missing sister. It also adds some tension to her family.

The episode gets the small details right. It finally hints that Kate is Jewish. It’s something the series has ignored for the first three episodes. It also has Kate not being smooth in the Batsuit. She misses a Batarang and causes damage. She doesn’t slide right into the role which is a nice touch.

The show actually finally shows some standout ideas as the end has Kate making a declaration as to what she’s going to do. It feels like a response that Batman would do more to help Gotham as Bruce but doesn’t. It puts the concept Kate can do good in both her roles and out of everything, this is what can really make the series interesting. Hopefully, it’s more than just a line and the team does something with it.

Overall Rating: 7.2

TV Review: Batwoman S1E3 Down Down Down

Batwoman

In the third episode of Batwoman, the city awaits for another visit from who they think is Batman; Alice continues to taunt Kate; Mary gets an unexpected new friend; as Batwoman faces a new enemy, Kate realizes she must make a decision.

The third episode of Batwoman picks things up a bit as the dance between Alice and her father and Kate continues. But the real focus is a former friend of Bruce and Kate who’s out for revenge.

That plotline is a bit mixed. It gives a distraction from the Alice storyline but the decision to act against Bruce due to “Batman’s return” feels a bit rushed and not fleshed out. We get a Riddler reference but overall it’s all a bit meh.

Ruby Rose continues to improve in her acting. While her delivery is still a bit cold, there’s at least some variant in her delivery of lines and scenes. Camrus Johnson as Luke Fox has his moments and shows off a lot of entertainment factor. He feels a bit like a few other actors and characters we’ve seen on CW shows but he brings some subtle humor to the episode. Nicole Kang still feels like the underused actor and while there’s glimpses of her Mary of being a bit more than a bratty socialite, she’s used here mostly to push Kate’s story and relationship with her ex Sophie.

Rachel Skarsten continues to be the standout of the show. There’s something about her delivery and every scene that’s entertaining. She runs circles around the others on the show and as a first season villain, she’s the highlight of the series.

Though Skarsten as Alice and the dynamic between her, Kate, and their father is interesting, the dance is a bit old. Not enough emphasis is delivered as to why Kate doesn’t just turn her in and let the truth come out that way. The show never quite makes the case as to why it’s doing what it is.

We do get a more proper Batwoman costume on this episode and it’s not a bad adaptation from the comic version. It beats what we’ve seen the last few episodes in the proto version that never quite worked and didn’t make a whole lot of sense.

The episode is just ok continuing the series rather dull delivery of the material. It’s not good and it’s not bad. It just is. The hour at times feels like a chore thought the last this episode and the previous less so than the debut. Batwoman underwhelms in what should be a much higher quality show and makes one wonder if the magic of The CW’s DCTV might be waning.

Overall Rating: 7.0

TV Review: Supergirl S5E2 Stranger Beside Me

Supergirl Season 5

Supergirl, Alex and Braniac thwart an alien attack while William investigates Kara; J’onn J’onzz and Kelly use Obsidian tech to solve a problem.

What does J’onn J’onzz brother want? Why can’t J’onn remember details? This second episode reveals all of that and more. It’s an episode that balances reveals and battles each with good and bad. But, again, the most interesting aspect of the show is Kara’s work life.

Much like the season’s debut, the episode feels like it lacks some of the fun of previous seasons. There’s just something that feels off-kilter as far as tone and pacing.

The search of J’onn’s brother brings the team in contact and a quick battle ensues but it all feels a bit unnecessary. The episode would have been stronger have the hidden Martian among the team. It would have created a more tense episode and kept the viewer wondering who could be trusted. Stringing that along would create a bit more tension for the series and a unique aspect.

The episode mixes in humor with a focus on relationships that run from intriguing to a bit over the top (on purpose). It adds some levity and is closer to the “happier” tone of previous seasons. Though some of those relationships are unhealthy in reality.

Still, the best aspect is Kara and her work. With a new boss and a coworker whose actions are dubious, there’s a lot there to mine. The show dances around all of it but in a world where journalism struggles an staff are dismissed at a whim, it has the most potential of the season. A small detail at the end makes it all even more interesting and puts things in a gray zone.

The series continues to build up Lena as a villain and where that’s taken could make or break the season. It’s a bit of a shame as a Luthor as a villain feels a bit been there done that but Kara/Supergirl needs a big bad that can play out over seasons and Lena can be that.

The episode continues to set things up for the season and show continued potential. There’s a lot the episode dances around and while the tone of the episode and season is a bit different, it’s still an enjoyable hour.

Overall Rating: 7.35

TV Review: Batwoman S1E2 The Rabbit Hole

Batwoman

In the second episode of Batwoman, Jacob Kane and the Crows up the stakes; Kate continues to look to Bruce Wayne’s legacy for guidance as Luke Fox inadvertently gets pulled into Batwoman’s vigilante heroics; Sophie and Kate are forced to team up.

The second episode of Batwoman is interesting if not a bit dragged out. Much like the first episode, there’s something morose about the tone of the second. It’s slow and somewhat predictable but builds on aspects of the debut and improves in many ways.

While still serious, Ruby Rose is a bit more entertaining in her acting. Things aren’t quite as flat and there’s some subtle things she does in her delivery and movements that’s intriguing. Nicole Kang as Mary Hamilton, Kate’s stepsister, has a bigger role. Her character is playing an interesting aspect in the series as an exploration of the definition of family. Camrus Johnson as Luke Fox gets some acknowledgment as far as his family as well. Though it’s not dived into too much, it’s a nice touch. It plays into larger themes of the show and especially Kate’s relationship with her own father played by Dougray Scott. Rachel Skarsten‘s Alice is still the standout. The “reveal” that she’s Kate’s sister comes a bit too soon in the show and doesn’t deliver the emotional punch it should. The show does leave enough out there to create doubt of her identity.

Still, the show creates an interesting dynamic with Kate struggling with what to do with a villain who might her sister. That gets more complicated with the fact their father is also in pursuit and in denial that it’s his daughter.

Meagan Tandy‘s Sophie Moore is still the most interesting thing of the show though frustrating at the same time. Kate’s past relationship with her is present and the fact Sophie is now married to a man becomes more intriguing. The show acknowledging the bisexuality exists is nice, or there could be deeper denial at play as well with Kate being an out and confident gay woman and Sophie is still struggling. That’s the frustrating part but also potential further down the road in the show. But, as a whole, it’s nice to see the complicated reality of sexuality in real life.

There’s much improved in the second episode of Batwoman though some of the aspects such as Alice and Batwoman’s interaction is a bit predictable and frustrating. The show has touches of greatness and other moments not so much. Much like the debut, there’s potential there and it’s a show that has at least found a voice of its own, both for good and bad.

Overall Rating: 7.0

NYCC 2019: Riverdale Gets a First Look at the New Season

Riverdale executive producer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa joined series stars Mädchen Amick, Marisol Nichols, Mark Consuelos, Skeet Ulrich, and Molly Ringwald at New York Comic Con to give fans a first look at all-new, never-before-seen footage of the upcoming season.

In this new trailer, Archie receives a phone call that changes his life forever, and the gang navigates a senior year filled with family secrets, scandals, a new school, and complicated relationships. Season four of Riverdale premieres Wednesday, October 9, at 8/7c on The CW.

TV Review: Supergirl S5E1 Event Horizon

Supergirl Season 5

Supergirl kicks off its fifth season as Kara is surprised to find CatCo has a new owner who has brought in a star reporter; new couples emerge and explore their budding relationships; J’onn J’onzz receives an unexpected visitor.

I ducked out of the fourth season of Supergirl though appreciated the show’s willingness to take on very real-world issues. The fifth season seems to be keeping that mix of fantasy and reality. Kara has been awarded with a Pulitzer for her work about the President and she and the newspaper are focused on the upcoming election. It echoes the current Impeachment and 2020 election. It wears its advocacy on its sleeve with observations about voting and voters.

The show continues to balance its superhero aspects and “real life” but in this season opener it’s the real life that wins out. The exploration of modern journalism and employment is interesting. There’s clearly more there but what’s presented is intriguing and the best part of the episode.

Kara’s relationship with Lena is the other focus. Kara is torn as to whether she should reveal her identity. It’s the second best part in an episode whose villain is rather boring.

There’s some negative in that Kara’s glasses lack glass at times and Melissa Benoist’s makeup is just not up to snuff. There’s a mix of what looks like bad foundation and tan lines (really a lack of tan). It’s noticeable enough to distract.

The episode is one of the weaker debuts for the series. It has its moments but never quite excites. Its best moments are the human ones.

Overall Rating: 7.0

TV Review: Batwoman S1E1 Pilot

Batwoman

Kate Kane returns to Gotham when a gang targets her father and her ex-girlfriend Sophie Moore. Bruce Wayne, aka Batman, is gone and Gotham is facing increasing lawlessness. That’s the base of Batwoman, the latest entry into The CW‘s DCTV.

Ruby Rose suits up in the iconic role, donning the cape as Batwoman. Much speculation and nervousness has surrounded the show. Batwoman has become both an LGBTQ+ icon but also one of the few Jewish characters in comics. How much the show would lean into the many aspects of the character remained a mystery but the show has no problem in putting at least some of her out there.

At the center of Kate’s return is trying to save her ex-girlfriend. A woman she was expelled from the military due to “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” It’s an aspect of the comic character that was forward for its time and still has an impact today. The acknowledgment is there and it’s an important part of this version’s history.

Also present is the strife with her father Colonel Jacob Kane played by Dougray Scott. His history is teased but not quite as clear as to how closely it aligns with that of the comic counterpart. Where the show takes this relationship may become key as even in this first episode it’s a bit by the books and breaks little new ground.

Camrus Johnson as Luke Fox is her tech guy and he too adds little for emotional depth. His role is one we’ve seen on every CW show.

What is interesting is Kate falling into the role of Batwoman. Her discovery of her cousin’s secret identity falls short in a cold emotional scene. Sadly it comes off as too distant and doesn’t resonate. It highlights Rose’s flat performance. It works well for the military aspects of the character but beyond that, it borderlines unlikeable. This isn’t a character I want to route for beyond stopping the bad guys. The fun we see in the other DC based CW shows isn’t present.

The show picks up slightly as Kate dons the cape but that’s mostly due to Rachel Skarsten‘s Alice. As a villain, she brings a certain flair to an otherwise cold and unemotional show. She has a Joker like quality enhanced due to the seriousness and blandness of everyone else involved. Unfortunately, the reveal of the character is delivered too soon in the series and again lacks an emotional punch.

As a debut, the pilot for Batwoman has potential but falls short of the fun or excitement of previous CW DC shows. Its different tone may be the cause of that as it’s so different from the rest. The show’s last ten minutes is where the potential is as we learn more about Sophie and we see the result of the return of “Batman” around Gotham. The show has the fundamentals but it takes too much of Gotham’s dour tone to heart. Even Batman, and Batwoman, can enjoy themselves.

Overall Rating: 7.0

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