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quarks

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  1. S07.E01: Inmate 4587

    And Arrow decides that back to basics (for what, the fourth time now?) means tortured Oliver, shirtless Oliver, and ... time travel/flash forwards. Oh, Arrow. Let the rest of the Arrowverse focus on flash forwards and wacky timejinks. You focus on Shirtless Oliver. Good things: 1. Felicity's hair was kinda awesome. The nose and eyebrow rings, not my thing, but the hair? Pretty awesome. 2. Did I mention shirtless Oliver? 3. Their twin scenes - the parallel fighting and the prison scene - were also highlights. That moment when Amell portrayed Oliver bracing himself to hear about the deaths of Felicity and William - well done. 4. And some of the stunt work was definitely back on. As was the editing. I don't want to get too optimistic, but...I'm mildly optimistic for the rest of the season. 5. Have I mentioned shirtless Oliver yet? 6. Unpopular opinion here, I suspect, but I liked Rene tonight. I don't expect that to last, mind you, but I did like that he toned down the hypocrisy considerably and was focused, for once, on what might actually help people. And he was listening to people. 7. The bit where Dinah and Rene were both "whatever" about what Laurel says. Heh. 8. And the two season one newscasters are still with us! YAY! Though I'm kinda wondering about newscaster number one, who seems to be just at reporter level now. Will he ever anchor a Star City news report again? Let's see what season seven says! Questionable things: 1. So, I get that Curtis had an impressive background prior to joining Palmer Tech, and that Diggle presumably gave him a good recommendation, but since joining Palmer Tech he was associated with the crash of a multimillion business, joined a start up that went nowhere, and was alleged to be involved in multiple felonies, so....can anyone explain what he's doing as the division head of a U.S. military group, however clandestine? No one? That's what I thought. 2. Felicity, I'm going to guess that part one of Witness Protection Rules is "Do not show off your massive computer skills to complete strangers who might just be working for Diaz." 3. Rene, uh, rather than keep making your point, go get tape and fix the bag! 4. On the one hand, giving Oliver The Count of Monte Cristo to read is on point. On the other hand, given that he's presumably going to be there for some time, maybe you should have given him the FULL version and not what was clearly an abridged one? (It's a long, long, book.) Though I can't help but feel that Dumas would have greatly approved the use of his book as a killer weapon. 5. And still comparing hands, on the one hand, I much prefer Dinah as a cop - or, rather, I should say, I prefer JH performing a focused, intelligent cop. On the other hand....this is just raising all sorts of questions. She was fired, for one thing, several people suspect or know that she's an associate of Oliver Queen, for a second thing, and for a third, most important thing - it's throwing the character right back into Hypocrite Mode, one of the chief complaints made about her last season. Dinah, you are a former vigilante who, unlike Oliver, is not in jail. This "I'm going to put the new Green Arrow in jail!" is just...not a good look, following that. 6. And on that note, Dinah, it's all very well to want to catch the new vigilante, but in your own words, your focus is the safety of this city and cleaning it up, so....maybe arrest the bad guys and THEN worry about the vigilante? 7. All characters: This is Arrow. No place is ever safe. And definitely not boarding schools. You people have been on this show for how long now and haven't figured this out yet? 8. We are trading flashbacks on Lian Yu for....flashforwards on Lian Yu? Oh, Arrow. 9. Who actually owns the title to this island? The Chinese government still? Argus? If so, has anyone checked to what they think about all the questionable plot uses that this island keeps getting forced into? Bad things: 1. Arrow. Bamford. It's called "LIGHTS. CAMERA. ACTION" for a reason, and that reason is LIGHTS so that viewers can later SEE WHAT IS IN FACT HAPPENING ON THE SCREEN. I mean I get that there were a couple of dodgy bits there that you wanted to hide, but that doesn't mean you should leave viewers totally in the dark, as you kept doing. 2. Diaz. Worst villain this show has ever had, and unfortunately, the summer break has not improved him. I mean, I'm supposed to be scared of a guy who wasn't able to capture a kid and who could be held off by a largely untrained fighter until security forces arrived? Uh-huh. The fact that all of the returning villains in the jail were better actors did not help. Kill off this villain, Arrow. Please. 3. I'm resigned to seeing the same prison sets over and over and over again on three or four shows. Must I also see the same prop cars? It wasn't that dark, though, kudos, I guess, for keeping that same Chrysler going for seven seasons now even with lots of people falling on it. And now, Black Siren: On the one hand, I'm tempted to ask just how Black Siren - who, all else aside, is originally from another world - has managed to fake enough legal knowledge to stay the DA for this long, and on the other hand, I really want to applaud Arrow for continuity and recognizing that six straight seasons of incompetent, kidnapped, dead, and very evil DA's have left the DA's office so shattered, its staff now can't even tell that not only is their DA not a lawyer, but isn't even from this earth. On balance, I think I kinda have to say, kudos, Arrow! Well, for the continuity, at least.
  2. S04.E01: American Alien

    Yes, yes, I did. I'm also pretty sure that Supergirl is going to ignore all of the potential consequences of this. Even a brief line suggesting that you have to purchase a license to have one, or have it prescribed, might have helped.
  3. S04.E01: American Alien

    "Would you believe they're in an abandoned warehouse?" What I believe, Supergirl and the rest of the Arrowverse shows, is that the first step to solving a problem is acknowledging the problem.
  4. (popping out of lurkdom) The puppy thing is in reference to a Twitter account that rates adorable puppies and dogs, and since every picture the account posts is of a very cute dog, it consistently rates all dogs as 12 out of 10, 14 out of 10, and so on, usually in the 10/12, 10/15 format. When called on this by someone, the Twitter account explained that they were "good dogs, Brent." People have taken this and ran with it for other dogs and cute animals like kittens and bunny rabbits. The guy upset about the dog ratings eventually got his own very cute dog. This is the original account: https://twitter.com/dog_rates
  5. Colton Haynes. I'd be shocked if EBR is earning more than he is. I don't think this is true. SAG rules require that actors be paid for all episodes that they are credited for. (Thus why HBO continues to spoil who will be in which episode at the beginning - there's a lot of money involved here.) In some cases, however, actors/studios can negotiate for a "credit fee" and then only get an "episode fee" for episodes they film for, or, agree to the CW's "weekly performer" rate as their standard fee and receive a "main role performer" rate for episodes they actually film. [And now I'm really out.]
  6. [Not really returning, but got a number of DMs about this so I thought I would make one blanket comment here for everyone.] First, I would just like to note that Amell is by his own account and that of pretty much everyone else at WB entering contract negotiations this year, and by all appearances, he's ready to play hardball. So I think that any statements he makes to the press over the next few months - until at least February - should be read with that in mind. And I'm not sure what, exactly, his negotiating position is. On the one hand, it's difficult to see Arrow continuing with another lead - and even as of season six, Arrow is profitable, doing very well in post views. Beyond that, fairly or unfairly, it's credited for launching the entire current DC live action line (including Gotham), which in turn is part of what's allowing DC to launch this streaming service as one of many potential ways to combat the Disney machine. On the other hand, DC now has several other superhero shows, and Arrow is entering its seventh season. Second. For season one, assuming he's telling the truth here, Amell is presumably referring to Katie Cassidy, Susanna Thompson and Paul Blackthorne, which would place him fourth. (Not John Barrowman, who wasn't a regular until the third season.) I know there were some confusing reports early on that Amell was equal to Cassidy, but those reports a) weren't from very valid sources, b) seemed to be based on the assumption that the lead is always paid more than the other actors (not true - and especially not true in the DC TV shows) and c) may have reflected the fact that CW actors do get paid for each individual use of their likeness on billboards and earn royalties on the use of their likenesses on merchandise, and after the first few months, Amell appeared on more billboards/merchandise/etc. than the rest of the cast did. For season two, Amell is presumably referring to Colton Haynes, Katie Cassidy, Susanna Thompson and Paul Blackthorne. Colton Haynes was a CW demand and a potential spinoff lead. A later interview might prove me wrong, but I don't think he's referencing Willa Holland at all. There were rumors that Holland was paid scale, and although that does seem unlikely, Holland made several public negative comments about her salary, and reportedly left Arrow at least in part over a salary dispute. I have no idea what EBR's salary is compared to the rest of the cast, but I'd guess that she's probably fourth, maybe fifth for this upcoming season. [And I'm out for a bit again. Cheers!]
  7. 1. Oliver Queen spent the first season of Arrow and five seasons of flashbacks murdering multiple people. He also betrayed his entire team, arranging for the kidnapping of a teammate's kid, and landing the rest of the team in a small cell to be slowly killed by poison gas. He still leads Team Arrow. 2. Dinah Drake killed people in her introductory episode, spent the entire first half of this season lying to her teammates about her involvement with Vigilante, and concealing her knowledge about the extent of Diggle's injuries. She still leads Team Not Arrow. 3. Sara Lance spent several years as an assassin, something that still haunts her as of last night's episode, to the point where she feels unworthy of being in a happy relationship, just spent last episode nearly murdering her entire team and gravely injuring several of them, and still leads Team Legends. This is even more egregious than Team Arrow and Team Not Arrow, since those teams have always been comprised of ethically compromised people. Team Legends, in contrast, usually consists of a mix of ethically compromised people (Mick, Leonard, Sara, Rip, more arguably Zari this season, and now Constantine) and unambiguously good characters who have never murdered or intentionally harmed anyone (everyone else). Ok, there was that one time back in Arrow season three where Ray left poor Roy twitching in a puddle, but as Arrow later confirmed, that was a production error. Ray, Nate, Amaya and Wally aren't killers. Nor were Stein and Jax back when they were members of the team, and Zari, although not exactly straitlaced, hasn't murdered anyone. Nonetheless, the leaders of Team Legends have always come from the ethically compromised side (Rip and Sara). Also, as Legends of Tomorrow has said, Mick Rory remains a full member of their team despite betraying them more than once. Sara was immediately welcomed back as team leader even after nearly murdering the entire team (and Ava and Gary). Sure, she was under the control of another personality during last night's episode when she nearly murdered her entire team - but that's pretty much the same situation that Caitlin/Killer Frost was in last season (under the control of another personality), and the script was clear: just like Killer Frost is partly Caitlin, the Death Demon totem is also partly Sara. 4. At the end of last season, Kara Danvers deliberately released lead, a toxin, into the atmosphere, knowing it would result in the genocide of several people, and killed Rhea. She previously briefly turned into a villain while under the influence of Red Kryptonite. She is still a part of Team Supergirl and the DEO. Mon-El, who told her to release the toxin, despite knowing it would kill his own mother, is the leader of the Legion of Superheroes. J'onn J'onzz has killed/murdered more than one character, and remains the leader of the DEO. 5. Iris murdered Savatar - a future version of Barry - at the end of last season. Barry directly killed various metahumans at the start of season three - and that's without even getting into the major ethical mess of his time traveling. Bear in mind, this season alone several people are dead as a direct result of self-absorbed choices that Barry Allen made. Barry's emergence from the Speed Force turned them into metahumans, and thus targets of the Thinker, because of Barry's emergence from the Speed Force - a Speed Force that he was only in because of his selfish decision to change the past, something he was warned multiple times would have severe consequences. Meanwhile, Julian was also temporarily turned into a villain/killer thanks to outside influences, and later welcomed into the team. 6. That is, every single leader of the CW superhero shows has killed/outright murdered at least one person, and at least three other characters have temporarily turned into villains (or in Sara's case, kinda back into a villain) only to be welcomed back into their teams. And that's not even including the various times when the teams have temporarily teamed up with villains (or quasi-villainous group ARGUS) out of necessity. So while sure, we could argue that killing/betraying team members should get you kicked off a team, for the most part, the shows disagree. To the point of making the exact opposite argument, with Arrow this season showing that refusing to forgive betrayals and splitting up the team has left both teams less effective, leading to the deaths of multiple extras and Rene's severe injury, and Legends of Tomorrow just last night showing that splitting up the party nearly got everyone killed. So if you're going to argue that Caitlin/Killer Frost doesn't belong on the team, you need to argue why that standard applies only to Caitlin (who, remember, only has this dual personality problem in the first place because of Barry, not because of any of her decisions/actions) and not to other characters - including characters on Flash. 7. Caitlin is not schizophrenic. She has a dual personality order. The two are not the same thing. 8. My real problem, however, is with your argument that people with mental disorders aren't even qualified to be members of teams. I find this statement not just offensive, but absolutely appalling. I think it's one thing not to like a character (especially Caitlin, who hasn't exactly been written/performed to be as likable as Iris and Kara, or as sympathetic as Sara and even, to an extent, Laurel). It's another thing to make an argument like this, and suggest that disabled people can't be leaders or superheroes. And not an argument embraced by any of the Arrowverse shows, all of which have welcomed members dealing with an assortment of mental illnesses or metaphorical stand-ins for mental illnesses. 9. Meanwhile, this all completely misses my original point, which was to note that Flash has previously shown Caitlin in leadership roles at both Star and Mercury Labs, while failing to do so with Iris. That isn't an argument that Caitlin should be the leader of Team Flash; it's yet another observation of the way that Flash has often failed to write some very needed character beats for Iris. In this particular case, a simple side comment back in season one about Iris getting a promotion to assistant manager at Jitters or something, or saying something back in season two about leading a group investigation into some sort of weird thing in Central City, would have eliminated most of this issue.
  8. S01.E12: Vertigo

    At one point we were calling it the "Plot Convenient Herb," with a small group in a favor of "Letting Us Celebrate Shirtlessness Herb." I'm pretty sure neither name was was used on the show.
  9. Black Panther and special effects budgets: https://www.engadget.com/2018/02/24/black-panther-vfx-models/?sr_source=Twitter
  10. S01.E13: Betrayal

    Well, as Bkwurm1 says, pretty much all of my "And now, Laurel!" stuff is meant more or less as a joke. (Unlike my comments on Arrow's multiple budget and set issues. That outrage is real.) But for some context, if memory serves, someone here suggested doing a season one rewatch shortly after the season two finale. I think this was a few months after a number of posters here had come from a now defunct site called Television Without Pity, and we thought it might be fun to snark on the first season and see how we reached the end of the second season. That "Without Pity" stuff made some of us - well, ok, me - a bit harsh. But by then, with the benefit of a bit of hindsight, I also wanted to know just how much the writing and narrative choices had contributed to the frequently negative audience perceptions of Laurel - and also, to point out that Laurel's changed role on the show didn't suddenly happen in season two, but in fact stretched way back to season one. So I started looking at the narrative choices that made traumatized, workaholic Laurel, with her desire to help people, somehow less sympathetic to many viewers than serial killer Oliver who killed 24 people in this episode alone, or even, for that matter, Diggle, the bodyguard who decided to help him - concealing his real job with Oliver Queen from his own family members as a result. So although you're right, of course, that in this episode Laurel is not ethically much worse than Diggle and certainly not worse than Oliver, my goal wasn't to make that comparison - but rather, to count/highlight the number of times the narrative chose to make Laurel unsympathetic or incompetent, encouraging the audience to As said, benefit of a bit of hindsight.
  11. S04.E16: Run, Iris, Run

    On other topics - 1. Once again, Candice Patton saves the episode for me. Some really lovely performances there, and she did look great in that costume. 2. Iris finally gets to have superpowers and a good part of this plot is about Barry and Ralph because of course. 3. In related news, I think part of my hair is missing. 4. I hate Ralph. 5. I get why, for meta reasons, the episode did this, but given that Killer Frost has the power to freeze things and Cisco has the power to teleport people away, why did Iris head out there without having those two as backup, especially since she was still training/had needed help the previous time she went out, and especially especially since all of these guys always have issues the first time they try to be superheroes. Team Flash should know this by now. 6.Team Flash, you're about to unleash a tidal wave onto Central City and not one of you thinks that at least warning the cops about this might be a nice touch? I mean, you usually have Joe at least on speed dial?
  12. S04.E16: Run, Iris, Run

    After four seasons on this show, Iris still doesn't know that the plan is always "RUN, SPEEDSTER, RUN!!!" ??????
  13. Nielsen claims they're including social media stuff in their ratings now, though I'm personally kinda doubtful - Riverdale, for instance, had at least four times the number of tweets this week as Flash, but that doesn't seem to be reflected in the live numbers for either show. In terms of other forms of viewing - studios don't really need Nielsen for that. They get exact sales numbers from Amazon/iTunes/Google, and they can tell precisely how many devices are streaming episodes from network websites/apps. I think the much larger question is just how much longer Nielsen can survive - several networks (not just the CW) have basically said that they find Nielsen numbers either inaccurate (Fox, NBC) or irrelevant (the CW, MSNBC) or both (CNN, ABC Family), and networks now have the option of pointing to social media numbers to sell post-view/second run episodes to advertisers/potential distribution platforms.
  14. Frankly, I think that as incredibly wrong as they both are for that role, either one of them would be better as Catwoman than Tom Cruise would be as Green Lantern, and that's even if they include a scene of Tom Cruise shouting "YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE RING!" at a quavering Jack Nicholson which we all know they aren't going to do.