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  1. Lila82


    I thought season two was awful for these exact reasons. Burke and Hare had me fooled was an excellent intro, particularly tying in the Punch & Judy shows to demonstrate Hare's increasing unraveling, but it went sharply downhill from there. Where was the feminist criticism for "Mirror, Mirror", ala "Black Stockings"? Elizabeth Bathory was a powerful widow with vast wealth and land holdings, both of which played a role how her arrest, trial, and imprisonment were approached. And yes, most likely the most prolific female killer in history, but still -- the historical context matters. "The Curse of the Orloj" was so terribly acted and written, that I promptly gave up. There's so much cool history and lore that went into the making of the clock, and it was pushed aside for a "Man in the High Castle" knock off? What happened to this show? What is the point anymore? Season one was uneven, but cohesive. We learned about origin stories for vampires and werewolves, and that Candice Bergen's dad was a huge asshole. "Black Stockings" was hokey, but Bridget Cleary's story is important. "Ghosts in the Attic" was interesting, but felt more like a History Channel special than part of this series. There's no historical context, or modern tie-in for the stories told. Whatever this show became isn't the "Lore" of season one and that's a bummer.
  2. Lila82

    S03.E09: Libertad

    He actually said something along the lines of liking having someone in his life [Linc] that doesn't know about/isn't involved in the Cody drama. Which I guess is his way of confirming that Linc's main appeal, besides his body(!), is that Deran doesn't have to be Deran Cody with him. Which of course is an extension of "coming out", i.e., he'll never truly connect with someone if he isn't honest about who he is and what he does. The Adrian element is what confuses me. Deran clearly has real feelings for him, but is also pursuing more than "fun" with Linc, albeit something built on a lie. He still feels guilt over how he treated Adrian in the past, and yet, he's the most comfortable with him because Adrian sees through him and wants him anyway. I like Deran/Adrian scenes because it always brings out a beautiful vulnerability in Deran, but I'm also ready for it to move forward. So in conclusion, Deran, listen to your brother. Please learn from his mistakes. Be selfish and take one thing for yourself, which is the last thing either Linc or Adrian needs, but would make this viewer happier. Also: Lena! She might have been the saddest of sad children, but she made Pope human. I'll miss that part of his personality.
  3. I finished "Leviathan's Wake" on Wednesday and started "Caliban's War" last night and it's likely because I started the show before the books, but I so prefer the former. The books' world building is riveting, the characters are interesting, and the overall narrative is awesome, but the writing is terrible. Like, I almost put down the book when Holden described his prostate "as dry as the Sahara desert" while reminiscing about brothels. That's a middle school level metaphor and it rarely gets any better, which also made it harder for me to connect with the characters. Bad prose is bad prose, even when it's telling a cool story, and it makes the characters more one-dimensional than they actually are. Further, since the show isn't limited to two perspectives, the non-POV characters are fleshed out far more than in the books. Naomi is a fully-formed character, with tangled loyalties and a complex past, while in the book(s), she's a cipher. I don't think we know anything about her beyond her engineering talents. Same story with Amos and Alex, and they get even less air time in the books. Amos' backstory is one of my favorite things about the show. We learn so much from so little and Wes Chatham is amazing at making Amos feel real and authentic while speaking in a monotone and wearing a blank expression. I like having more screen time with them and letting the actors tell stories that are missing from the novels. And yet, my least favorite scene in both book and show was Miller yelling at Julie's boyfriend(?) for "letting her go", as if either man had any say in a grown woman making her own decisions. Fuck you, Miller. His relationship with Muss was uncomfortable and manipulative, and his obsession with Julie was creepy and unhinged. I didn't mind him projecting his own failures into the case, but when the fixation turned into Julie herself, I found myself reading and watching with increasing levels of unease. The Madonna/Whore trope has never done women any favors and that's what Miller did here: he idealized a woman he never met, made her bear the burden of his redemption, without ever caring about <i>her</i>. Julie Mao was this thing to save him and give him purpose, but we never got to know her, the real her, beyond wanting to do good. That's not a woman, that's an avatar of one, especially in the book when she becomes a literal angel to guide him through his own misadventures. For all Holden's sanctimony, he owned his own decisions and grappled with his guilt without a pretty young thing to prod him along the way. We don't need any more portrayals of women as innocent victims and virtuous naifs that float through life to serve as broken men's consciences. It's a tried trope, but also a dangerous one, and significantly reduced my enjoyment of both the first book and 1.5 seasons of the show. There are always grumblings when a TV/movie version of a book starts veering from canon, but I'm on the side of the series in this debate. It's taken the material and kept to the spirit of the story and the essence of the characters, and elevated it to a genuine commentary on current events. It feels very relevant -- almost unsettling -- as the different elements of the military-industrial complex are exposed and megalomaniacs inch closer to MAD :(. I'm also fascinated by the microaggressions each group throws at the others, like the scenes of Havelock learning Belter slang in season one and everyone scoffing at the "Belter Food" in the most recent episode. Those three second, seemingly throw away lines said so much more about the relationships between the characters and their ideologies than the pages and pages of inner monologue in the books. TV has the benefit of show rather than tell, but the clunkiness of the writing in the books kills any subtlety. I'll report back after "Caliban's War" and see if my feelings have changed. As the world expands and more characters gain perspectives (already loving being in Bobbie's head!), I might prefer the books to the show, but as is, the tighter writing, stronger characterization, and tangible connections to real life are putting me on the side of the show.
  4. Lila82

    S01.E05: Alfonzo Guzman-Chavez

    Oscar's speech was ON POINT. These men choose this life and they know the consequences for themselves and their families. Crying crocodile tears for ballplayers and their multi-million dollar deals while military families go through the same thing but with significantly less pay and higher stakes. Blip's speech was equally great. Ginny is earnest and kind, but she's also needy and naive. She makes everything about her because everyone else makes everything about her, and she has trouble separating the two. It was a good lesson for her, learning when to pull back and find balance in the complicated power dynamics of her personal relationships. The fewer flashbacks, the better. The audience is smart enough, and the writers should be clever enough, to convey Ginny's journey without falling anvils and Michael Beach's terrible acting. Amelia/Mike are easily the worst part of the show. I like Mike. I like Amelia. I don't mind them together romantically, but if I wanted to watch grown adults unironically act like teenagers, I'd watch a CBS comedy. Enough already.
  5. Lila82

    S03.E16: Perverse Instantiation Part Two

    This show went from my only must-see show of the week to a show I'm embarrassed to admit I watch. My biggest frustration isn't anything Lexa/Lincoln/Pike/Luna related, but that I watched 16 episodes of television and absolutely nothing happened. Bellamy and Clarke save the day, but there's more work to do. Check. Bellamy believes he succeeds at his redemption arc. Check. Lexa and Clarke's sexual tension is resolved. Check. Lincoln suffers repeated acts of brutal violence. Check. Octavia wails into the wilderness while she mourns Lincoln. Jasper and Monty come to odds over wanting to live in a place with clean clothes and pie and potentially a girl. Check. SERIOUSLY. 90% of this season was gratuitous violence with character regression thrown in for good measure. I'll give the writers a grudging 10% for balancing screen time and saving Indra (YES!!!), but the entire season was filler. 3x9 was literally a retread of 3x10 - Bellamy said so himself - but with more shooting! I couldn't tell you why ALIE destroying the world was important other than it gave the characters something to do. Jasper's one sentence admission about life sucking doesn't make up for the ten minutes of waterboarding we got to suffer through. I don't need to like the overarching plot, but I need to understand it. I don't. The premiere had such promise, these broken, haunted people living with the consequences of their unfortunate choices and trying to figure out how to do more than survive. That should have been the backbone of this season, and the very valid choices ALIE gave them in contrast to the pain and regret they had to bear every day. That would have made a whole lot more sense. But, you know, that story wouldn't have included crucifying Kane or hanging Abby or shooting Lincoln in the freaking head. Violence doesn't = good story telling. I hope, but know it's wishful thinking to believe, that the writers learned their lesson. Give us back our characters with a side of plot. That's what drew me into the show in the first place.
  6. Lila82

    S03.E02: Predators Far And Near

    I didn't see the Dr. Sweet reveal coming either, but that's because I want just a moment's happiness for Vanessa, one relationship that isn't mired betrayal and inner darkness. I knew he was too good to be true, but I had hope. Her hair, her dress, his awkwardness! Their date was the absolute sweetest, no pun intended. It's jarring, the cuts between dark, shadowed Victorian London and the vibrant colors of the American West, but that cinematography was "Mad Max: Fury Road" levels of color saturation. It actually hurt my eyes, and my TV is low-res and circa 2010. Just gorgeous. Re: Ethan's Origins Did I miss something - Ethan was born Apache? I thought it was clear that he came to Kaetenay to atone for his sins in the Indian Wars, not only as a soldier but also as a white man, and was adopted into the tribe as part of his penance. Or cursed for his crimes. It would go a long way in explaining why he's so committed to killing a man that considers him a son. Curious about Hecate's role in all this - she's been drawn to Ethan since the moment she saw him, and her loyalty to her mother was tenuous at best, ie, no love lost there so much as constant jockeying for power. Is she pursuing Ethan because she's genuinely interested in him or to subdue the Hound of God in a bid to capture the Master's attention? My guess is the latter. Talbot Range. I cannot wait to meet its master. Is Rusk talking with Victorian flourish or does he know something about the Talbot men - those couldn't be throwaway references to wolves. Isn't this the central narrative of the show, Vanessa's destiny to be the mother of evil and her life long quest to fight it, with a not so band of merry men to do her bidding? Which is what made this episode so sad: she does all the right things to move on with her life, but she can't catch a break and likely never will.
  7. Lila82

    S03.E01: The Day Tennyson Died

    True Story: in my younger years, I met Josh Hartnett at a party and completely lost it: babbling, excessive arm waving, inappropriate hugging...the man only gets better looking, and more talented, with age. If it happened today, I'd probably pass out on the spot. I'll admit I'm in the minority that doesn't like Patti Lupone. Not looking forward to her having a larger role this season. My assumption has always been that Ethan's relationship with Native Americans, both their culture and the people themselves, is directly related to his role in the Indian Wars. He was broken by what he saw and did during that time, yet speaks Chiricahua and has a deep understanding of Apache customs. In theory, he could have been forcibly adopted by a white family, but the majority of mandatory of assimilation policies happened after the wars ended, when he would have been a man grown. Rather, I suspect he immersed himself in Apache culture as a means of atoning for his sins. He's only known Malcolm a few months, a year at most, and Malcolm didn't correct Kaetenay when he called him a father figure - it's less about the length of their relationship and more about what they experienced together. As for Ethan's father, from the way Ethan's described him, he's a control freak that ruled with an iron fist. Bringing Ethan home might be less about fatherly love and more about returning what he feels is rightfully his. I'm mostly excited to get Ethan backstory! How did he get cursed? Why did he get cursed? Why was he chosen to protect Vanessa? I want to know now! I was too, but I LOVE this story. All the characters are layered and multi-faceted, but I've most enjoyed Victor's journey from sad, asexual virgin to sociopathic asshole. He thinks he's a monster because he created Lily, but he's a monster in how he seeks to control her. It's a nice role reversal with Caliban, who entered the scene as an unrepentant murderer, but emerged to be a sad, desperate creature whose only real want is a legitimate connection with another human being. And then Victor, while always weird and antisocial, had a full life, and now his only goal is possessing Lily. Who's the monster now, right? I don't think we're supposed to sympathize with Victor's man pain, but recoil in horror at how much it dictated life then, and continues dictate life today.
  8. Lila82

    S01.E16: Josh's Sister Is Getting Married!

    As a graduate of the Harvard of the South, and a lady with big boobs, this episode spoke to me in all the right ways. Although it's good dinner fodder next time my Vanderbilt grad brother is in town. We can rip this argument wide open again. Furthermore, at work, we occasionally have to wear matching polos that everyone hates and my A-cup coworker will not get it through her head that button-downs are not a feasible alternative. And while I've never taken out someone's retina, running is just not an option for me. I'd agree that Paula is the worst if she wasn't so pathetic. My guess is that things do work out with Greg and Rebecca spends season two battling the crazy in an effort not to sabotage it.
  9. Lila82

    S04.E05: Promised

    I wasn't bored with this episode so much as confused. I'm a viewer that talks to my television, to the reluctant acceptance of others, and over and over again it was, "What the hell is going on?" The show is too crowded, which makes each character's storyline a series of somewhat related plot points rather than a coherent arc. Just because it's in character for Ragnar or Lagertha to do something doesn't mean I don't want to know how they got there. I'd like to see more of Harald and Aslaug plotting together. Her marriage to Ragnar was never based on much more than her fertility, but it's turned into a passive aggressive sniping match for which of them can be the bigger asshole. We know the Lothbroks don't value fidelity. Get yours, Aslaug. And on a related note, stop coddling your murderous child. Ivar knew he did something wrong. Telling him it wasn't his fault = sociopath in the making. I don't get Bjorn/Torvi anymore than I get Ragnar/Yidu but at least the Lothbrok men are all about doing it for the ladies. I think I need to dress up as a member of Lagerthat's Shield Maiden Squad for Halloween. Burn of the Night: "Fame won't make your kingdom any bigger." Viking dick joke? See above: Ragnar's having a midlife crisis. He's getting older, Lagertha left him, his children don't need him as much anymore, and he achieved everything he wanted. Plus, he almost died and was thisclose to finding relief in Valhalla. He's tired and broken and exhausted by all the consequences he brought on himself. Boo hoo, but I get it. I don't mind him questioning his life and his choices, I wish we saw more of how the got there rather than a couple drug-infused confessions to Yidu.
  10. Lila82

    S03.E03: Ye Who Enter Here

    I was spoiled for Emerson's return by the credits, but still - didn't see that twist coming. The Azgeda blew up Mount Weather and Bellamy's girlfriend with whom he shared zero chemistry or spark! Oh, the angst that's coming. And speaking of chemistry, I'm shocked the Polis saleswoman didn't combust from standing too close to Abby and Kane. Just do it already! While I appreciate more balanced screen time, I don't like Clarke separated from the rest of the cast, Bellamy especially. Regardless of ever turning romantic, their relationship is the heart of the show. If they're going to turn against each other, at least do it to each other's faces. The 13th Station/13th Clan parallels were a little silly, but I appreciate the occasional deviation into society-building. All the focus on war gets tiring - I really do want to know what they'll do differently with this second chance. Every time Indra appeared on screen, I literally said, "I love Indra" to my tv. Same with Echo. She might have made Bellamy cry but she's good at what she does. I hope she stays recurring. Raven deserves all the hugs. Go Sinclair for picking her first! It's about time. ETA: Indra and Octavia are besties again. All is right in the world.
  11. Lila82


    This show is painfully stupid most of the time, but then Jimmy interacts with Edie and my heart just melts all over again. If the show was rebooted as Jimmy raising his newly discovered granddaughter with the help of his zany staff, while battling old feelings for his old girlfriend who's working as his hostess, I'd enjoy it so much more! Cutting out Gerald and Vanessa, and making Sara unrelated to Edie, would go super far in making the show better. Dick Casablancas was amusing in 2004. In 2016, Ryan Hansen needs a new character he can play to exhaustion. Since it channeled my fave "30 Rock" episode, I enjoyed it a bit too much too.
  12. Lila82

    S03.E01: Wanheda (Part 1)

    Fuck you, Jasper. How many wars does he have to start before someone does us all a favor and offs him? All for Bellamy finding love, but Bob Morley has chemistry with inanimate objects and they cast the single actress with whom he has negative chemistry. Indra lives! My season three wishlist is short and mostly involves her kicking ass and taking names. Also? Joshua lives!!! It's been years since I've seen an episode of "Dark Angel" but I'd recognize that dogboy anywhere. Still having trouble connecting with Abby and Octavia (and couldn't care less about all things Jaha), but if this episode is any indication, season three will be much more balanced than season two. I like Clarke but I'm interested in other characters too. Nearly all of them have been set up with interesting arcs. I'm pretty convinced the writers troll fanfic boards. There were a lot of references that come up in fic all the time and are now canon (see: contraceptive implants, Miller's sexuality, Arkadia, Bellamy reading Greek epics, etc). Singing teenagers? I know I'm old, but what am I missing? ETA: Because it sounded like a 70s porn soundtrack. Who knew the Grounders were big on wailing guitar solos.
  13. Lila82

    S04.E08: Unguarded Moments

    Somehow Will became the most consistent and well-written character on the entire show. I'm riveted by his journey and rooting for him to win even more than Juliette. Chris Carmack (from my hometown!!!) has been terrific at showing Will's pain and self-loathing, but also his yearning for love and connection and acceptance. Um, wow? Who knew Luke from "The O.C." had it in him. Sidenote: it also took me three tries to write the above paragraph because with Will Chase, Will Lexington, Luke Wheeler, and Luke from "The O.C.," I have a lot of trouble sorting out who's who. Luke Wheeler is a horrible father and Gabrielle's an embarrassment for telling him he's a good man. Colt doesn't need therapy because he saw Jeff die - he needs a third party to mediate his very valid issues with his dad. It's not even just about trust, but about human decency - a man died and Luke is willing to let it be ruled a suicide to protect his "brand". It's more than a legal issue - it's about character too. I know this comment is in response to the potential Deacon/Rayna/Markus triangle, but it also applies soooooo well to Maddie. Does Connie Britton have a clause in her contracts that she must always parent painfully accurate, rage inducing teenage daughters? At least Julie had Tami's fire to temper her somewhat - Rayna's somnolent approach to parenting isn't doing Maddie any favors. However, Rayna's very TamiTayloresque response to Deacon being all, "I don't know what to do about Maddie!!!" was awesome. Parenting is hard, Deacon, and there aren't always easy or obvious answers, but you don't get to ignore it. Go Rayna for standing her ground. I'm hoping that rather than a love triangle, Rayna's friendship with Markus makes Deacon get his head out of his ass, stop projecting his guilt into canonizing Beverly, and becomes an active part of their relationship again. I don't see her being even tempted to stray from Deacon, but glom onto anyone willing to provide emotional support. And finally, the less said about "The Beverly," the better.
  14. Lila82

    S03.E05: The Axeman's Letter

    Joseph Morgan is crazy attractive with the longer hair. It only took me six years to see it. I'm still unclear exactly why the sire lines are fighting, and while there are elements of the storyline that I like, I firmly despise that both Klaus and Elijah are falling on their swords because of girl problems. Boo hoo, Hayley got cursed. Boo hoo, Aurora dumped Klaus. They're emotionally stunted, but they're acting like they just found out that One Direction broke up. Maybe they're closet Zayn fans? I like Hayley and Davina's friendship. They need someone in their lives who doesn't mansplain. Freya too. She needs something to do with her time besides magicking for Klaus.
  15. Lila82

    S06.E04: Here's Not Here

    Maybe Eastman is a UMD alum? Fear the turtle, indeed. My only takeaway from this episode was a clunky, extended metaphor of wolves in sheep's clothing. We get it. Really, we get it. Morgan is going to bring doom upon them all. Rinse, wash, repeat. But hey - the long, slow sequences of Morgan staring moodily wildflower fields were a welcome break from the long, slow sequences of Rick trying to string a sentence together. I'll call it progress.