Archive for the ‘Blogs’ Category

Media Update 7/2/20

July 2, 2020


Cosmic Slop

When I was doing research for this week’s theme (because I was suddenly insanely curious), I stumbled upon this obscure movie and I was immediately interested. This actually has a really interesting history. It was originally supposed to be a show similar to Twilight Zone but only three episodes were produced and formed into a makeshift movie. The three segments are introduced by funk legend George Clinton acting like an alien. In fact, the title of the show is the name of a Funkadelic album. What caught my attention was the segment called “Space Traders” which is the most famous story. Basically, aliens come to Earth and promise to fix all of the United States’ problems if they will allow the aliens to take all of America’s black people. It is as heartbreaking as it sounds. All of the segments are intensely interesting and say a lot about African American culture. The special effects are incredibly cheap (which tracks with it being CGI from 1994) but the drama and acting are both so good. The stories are also well-written because they adapted successful short stories. The third segment “Tang” has especially good acting and I want to see it adapted to live theater. I really recommend this movie. (It’s free on Youtube currently)


Space is the Place

This was a movie basically created by the famous jazz/funk musician Sun Ra. He wanted to relay his philosophy surrounding the African American people. It ends up being a sort of Afrofuturist fable about the conflict between capitalism and spiritualism for the soul of the black man. A lot of it is very symbolic but some parts are a bit more literal. Sun Ra is the hero, returned from space to get black people to come with him in his space ship to a new land. He is up against basically the devil, played incredibly charismatically by Raymond Johnson. Seriously, he was the best part. The movie definitely dips into blaxploitation (with some full-frontal nudity) but it is mostly an odd yet entertaining movie. I would suggest holding onto a plot synopsis because the movie can get a bit weird at places. However, I think it is followable. It is a fascinating movie but not for everybody. I recommend it. (It is also free on YouTube)


The Brother from Another Planet

I was drawn to this movie because it stars Joe Morton, an actor that I have loved ever since I first saw him in the show Eureka. He is a great actor and is just instantly recognizable and likable. The movie is about an alien who arrives on Earth and stumbles into Harlem. He is from another planet yet he appears to be a black man. The movie does not so much have a plot arc but instead is driven by the main character’s interactions with earth customs in the early eighties. Adding to the intrigue is that Joe Morton’s unnamed character is completely mute. All of his acting is through gestures and facial expressions. It makes for interesting dialogue as characters around him end up revealing more of themselves than they probably would normally because he is silent and the conversations are lopsided. Morton interacts with many interesting characters and is flustered by capitalism, racism, and the ordinary goings-on of New York City. I definitely recommend this movie.

Music of the Week:
Funkadelic – Cosmic Slop

Sun Ra Arkestra – Seductive Fantasy

The Bright Light Social Hour – Ghost Dance

Cherae Leri – Feel

Indigo Mak – Ecstasy

Weekly Update:
– This week’s theme is “Black Science Fiction”
– I watched more Elementary Season 2
– I watched more Flash Season 6
– I watched more Arrow Season 8
– I watched more Watcher videos
– I watched more Supergirl Season 5
– I watched more Riverdale Season 4
– I watched more Black Lightning Season 3
– I watched more Rizzoli and Isles Season 4
– I watched more Legends of Tomorrow Season 5
– I watched more Supernatural Season 15
– I watched more Doom Patrol Season 1

Let Me Tell You a Secret

June 29, 2020

Media Update 6/25/20

June 25, 2020


Sleepaway Camp II (HBO Max)

I previously reviewed the first movie in the series during Halloween. The first movie is problematic but actually masterfully done. This movie shifts to being less problematic and also shifts to a more comedic horror movie. The movie is a great little parody of other eighties horror movies while still being a good little horror movie itself. I have included it here because the killer is a fully transitioned transwoman. The franchise covers the mental abuse that people with gender issues have and how gender issues can be caused by extreme trauma. The cast is really good at being bumbling teenage hormone monsters acting up at summer camp. There are a lot of fun subplots for each camper that run throughout the movie. The gore is really good without being over the top. The offbeat humor really works. Pamela Springsteen really works as the perpetually cheery serial killer with who has one solution to all of her problems. I really like this franchise and I am excited to see the third one. I recommend it.


Tragedy Girls (Hulu)

High School is a chaotic time under normal circumstances but when there is a killer loose, it can be even crazier. On top of that high schoolers already pretty much act like sociopaths no matter how you slice it. Add in an unhealthy fixation on social media and a need to be seen in the way you want rather than the way you are and it’s a recipe for disaster. This movie is a great look at how the media and society work around sensational death and also how the political machine messes up its response. The two leads, Brianna Hildebrand and Alexandra Shipp are so good at playing best friends who very well might be more than friends. They are so likable which is important for the kind of characters they play. I loved them so much. The movie is so darkly comic and easy to watch. I recommend this movie.


Knife and Heart (Prime)

This movie is set in the early 1970s within the culture of gay clubs and gay porn. The main characters are a lesbian couple who work together to make male on male porn. The movie is ostensibly a slasher film but it is also a drama about mental illness, art, commercialism, relationships, and the underground culture of homosexuality. It is set in France and as such, all dialogue is in French. It is also incredibly risque although there is nothing explicit but let us be real, there are a lot of scenes of guy on guy action artfully filmed. Online I have seen it compared to de Palma and Argento and I have to agree. It has a slow burn, dramatic horror to it which is interesting because, in my experience, slashers are more frantic. It allows the movie to really flesh out the characters so we get to know them on a personal level. The star, Vanessa Paradis, is so good as the often manic porn director who is just trying to make her life work when she is caught up in a mystery. Her charisma is inescapable and she brightens up what could be a dirge of a movie (which is also helped by some quirky moments). I recommend it but it is not for everybody.

Music of the Week:

Lil Baby – The Bigger Picture

Girl Gang- Yesterday’s Tomorrow

Khruangbin – Pelota

Kendrick Lamar – Alright

Vanessa Paradis – Love Song

Weekly Update:
– This week’s theme is “Pride Horror 2”
– I watched more Elementary Season 2
– I watched more Flash Season 6
– I watched more Arrow Season 8
– I watched more Buzzfeed Unsolved
– I watched more Supergirl Season 5
– I watched more The Good Wife Season 1
– I watched more Riverdale Season 4
– I watched more Black Lightning Season 3
– I watched more Rizzoli and Isles Season 4
– I watched more Legends of Tomorrow Season 5
– I watched The Last Slumber Party(Rifftrax Version)
– I watched Pressure Point (Rifftrax Version)
– I watched Oblivion (Rifftrax Version)

30 Days Challenge: Film Pt. 4

June 22, 2020


19 – A film made by your favorite director

I have been on board with Guillermo Del Toro since I first saw Mimic but I really fell in love with him as a director since Hellboy. He is such an imaginative Director who knows how to make brilliant stories with breathtaking visuals. I have loved every single one of his films that I have seen and I am working on finally seeing them all. I feel like this movie was kind of lost from the conversation of his career. I think people went into this movie expecting full-on horror but instead got more of a fantasy drama piece. What I find most amusing about this movie is that it may have had a Disney origin. Del Toro had signed on to do a movie based on Disney’s Haunted Mansion but the project ultimately fell through. Lo and behold, his next project ended up being a movie about a haunted house anyway. It makes me wonder (and I am not alone) whether or not Del Toro recycled some of his ideas from the Disney project into his own thing for Legendary. The movie is a great mystery and a very atmospheric, spooky movie. The visuals definitely made me really feel the movie more than most others (ie the cold, the damp).


20 – A film that changed your life

“Changing your life” is a strong statement. I do feel that movies have the same power that a good book or a good television show has, to move society and expand our minds. One such movie that expanded my mind is Pi, my first experience with the trippy work of Darren Aronofsky. The movie is about a young mathematician who figures out a great breakthrough. He is pursued by the powers that be who want to use the breakthrough for their own ends. The movie is dark and atmospheric but it meant more to me than it just being a good movie. To me, the movie is about knowledge and how to be responsible for it. The government, corporations, and other unscrupulous and corrupt powers will take and pervert knowledge that could be used for good. It also has a really accurate portrayal of chronic pain (which I dealt with for years) and social anxiety which I still deal with.


21 – A film that you dozed off in

I am ashamed to say it but I did fall asleep during Vertigo. It was not that it was a bad movie, I think I had just been suffering through some light sleep deprivation. The movie is really good, obviously, a classic rightfully lauded with honors. At the time, my friend Arthur was excited to show it to me but I yawned and ended up actually falling asleep which unfortunately ended movie night. I felt embarrassed at the time but now I realize my teenage body was just going through normal weirdness and I was also a bit of a night owl which led to sleepiness on other nights.


22 – A film that made you angry

The Boss made me particularly angry. It was somebody else’s choice for a movie night and I was not exactly looking forward to it. I am no big fan of Melissa McCarthy who seems like a one-note comedian who almost completely traffics in fat jokes and plays dumb irredeemable characters. She is kind of like Because of this movie, I will always hesitate before giving Melissa McCarthy a chance. She plays an absolutely horrible woman in the movie who is never shown to have learned any lesson. What makes it worse is that one of my all-time favorite actresses, Kristen Bell, is in this movie. It is such a waste of her talents. The movie is set up to basically crap on Kristen Bell for its entire running time and that is basically the point of the movie.


23 – A film made by a director that is dead

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly is one of the best films of its time. It was such a revelation and I was lucky enough to watch it at a fairly young age. It took an Italian man to reinvent the American Western. Sergio Leone was really good at creating beautiful yet ugly movies with engaging characters. He turned a mostly silent protagonist into something compelling. It is a shame that that actor turned into such an old racist but Leone could hardly be blamed for that. Leone portrayed people as they are, warts and all. Heroes are not paragons of virtue and villains are not absolute monsters.


24 – A film you wish you saw in theaters

I really enjoyed Knives Out but I really think that some of the nuanced humor could have been helped by seeing it with an audience. Also, the movie is really pretty, and seeing it on a bigger screen could not have hurt. There are plenty of other movies, especially during these times of COVID, that I wanted to see in theaters. I missed out on seeing the following in theaters this year or last: Spiderman Far from Home, Onward, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Bloodshot. I would have also loved to see older movies in theaters. In particular, I think of the Marx Brothers movies. I would have loved to laugh along with huge crowds as the brothers’ antics ensued.

30 Day Challenge: Film Pt. 3

June 15, 2020


13 – A film that put you in deep thoughts

I went with Do the Right Thing because it is such an important film that is still relevant today. The movie is written and directed by Spike Lee and is probably his best movie (at least in my opinion). The plot follows a young black man who works as a pizza delivery for an Italian-American restaurant. He is keeping his head down and just trying to make it through his day. In the height of summer, a strange disagreement becomes a racist incident which then becomes a fight. The situation quickly gets out of control until a young black man is killed by a police officer with a chokehold. This sparks the community to violence. The movie makes me really think because it is interesting to follow the course of events and the lines of dialogues to see how things go so badly. Many criticize whether the main character did “the right thing” but it is clear that he did. Those who claim that he did not have fallen into the racist trap of equating property damage with human loss of life or injury. Property can be replaced but a person can never be replaced once they are broken. This is incredibly relevant as I type this right now.


14 – A film that gave you depression

What Dreams May Come is such a depressing film. It is completely about death which is not exactly my favorite subject. Film is escapism and forcing me to contemplate my own mortality is not the escapism that I want. At the time that I watched it, I had recently started my fandom of Robin Williams. I love and continue to love him as an actor and entertainer but I love his comedy above all. He is not funny at all in this movie. There are plenty of movies that are not exactly wacky comedies that I have enjoyed him in but this is a really dire movie. It also has some weird casting choices with two white characters strangely becoming people of color in the afterlife. It also deals heavily with grief and suicide in a way that just drags on and on without being entertaining or uplifting. The movie just felt so dreary.


15 – A film that makes you feel happy

Moana is a film that just exudes joy. The main character is so interesting, a young woman with wanderlust. She denies that wanderlust but then must heed its call when destiny comes calling. The main character’s boundless optimism and determination are inspiring. The sidekick, a demigod, is funny and goofy but is constantly upstaged by a mere human. Every character in the movie is a delight. The monster comes off almost as a Polynesian David Bowie. The coconut goblins are so creative and the action is thrilling. On top of that, a lot of the movie is sunny and bright and it just makes my heart feel good. The songs are written by the excellent Lin-Manuel Miranda and Opetaia Foa’i combining Miranda’s snappy lyrical style with Foa’i’s more traditional island feel. The movie just comes together to form a very happy memory for me. Also, as an aromantic, the lack of a romantic subplot makes me even happier.


16 – A film that is personal to you

When I was in Fifth Grade, I was diagnosed with a structural birth defect that sent me into surgery. I was so afraid as I went into surgery but suddenly I was out like a light and I woke up in the ICU, recovering. As I lay there drugged and feeling completely destroyed, they wheeled a television in. I lay there on my side and watched Aladdin. It was such a gift to me. To be there with my mother and watch a movie that I absolutely love was such a godsend. Whenever I watch the movie, I get a warm and fuzzy feeling about my life being saved. It is also just a really great movie about how class does not matter but the strength of character does. It also about how freedom is more important than just about anything you could ask for.


17 – Favorite film sequel

Thor: Ragnarok was something that I did not expect and I was blown away by. I loved Thor and Thor: Dark World but I seemed to be somewhat in the minority. The two movies each felt like a breath of fresh air but they were both a bit dark. Ragnarok took the concepts from the first two movies and completely shook them up. They put a God in a helpless state and finally, truly having to face humility. The comedy is off the charts without distracting from extremely important messages. It is the first Marvel movie with a truly dynamic and interesting villain and it is a woman. Not just any woman but Cate Blanchett. It is not only a Thor movie but it is also a Loki movie and a Hulk movie. It fully revived a franchise and infused the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with new energy to move forward. This was absolutely necessary moving into the Infinity War.


18 – A film that stars your favorite actor/actress

Life After Beth stars my favorite actress, Aubrey Plaza. Her dark sarcasm and twisted sense of humor never fail to amuse me. She has done more television work but she is starting to get more film work. Life After Beth is an offbeat movie about a girl who dies and comes back as a zombie. Her boyfriend tries to deal with it but eventually, things start falling apart. The movie is funny but it is also off the wall bonkers insane. Aubrey Plaza absolutely makes this movie with her unhinged performance that shows such a range.

Media Update 6/11/20

June 11, 2020


Batwoman

I have been excited about this show since the title character made a guest appearance on the other Arrowverse shows. I have also loved the action movies that I have seen Ruby Rose in so far. She has a strength of personality that really suits her as an action star. I expected the show to be another Arrowverse extension (which is not a bad thing). However, this show ended up feeling a lot deeper. First, they did not shy away from Kate Kane being a lesbian. She has a prominent ex on the show and they do not shy away from LGBT themes. It also has a lot of fun psychological thriller themes concerning Batwoman and her arch-nemesis Alice. Ruby Rose plays Kate Kane aka Batwoman and she is perfect for the role. She is funny but can go cold and hard at the drop of a hat. Rachel Skarsten is delightfully mad as Alice, the Wonderland themed villain who is brilliant and has a personal stake in things. The show is a lot of fun but they definitely hit some deeper, darker themes (similar to Black Lightning and Doom Patrol). I am looking forward to watching the rest of this but I am sad that Ruby Rose has already bowed out of the show. Still, I look forward to season 2. I really recommend it.


Doom Patrol

I have definitely been a Grant Morrison fan and this show definitely follows the Grant Morrison sort of comic books. This show is wonderfully weird and it is hard to predict what will happen next. Part of why that is is because the main villain is a being of chaos (played brilliantly by Alan Tudyk) who is absolutely omnipresent and hilarious. The series features the grand return of Brendan Fraser who plays Robotman, a racecar driver who is now a brain in a robot body due to a bad accident. Diane Guerrero plays Crazy Jane, a young woman with 64 personalities each with their own superpower. Matt Bomer plays a tortured man who is more tortured by having been gay in the sixties than his condition. April Bowlby plays a former Hollywood starlet who had her career ended by gaining shapechanging powers. Joivan Wade plays Cyborg, a young hero who is trying to show the world how good he can be while figuring out who he is. Finally, Timothy Dalton plays their boss and caretaker. I really love the show and how I cannot predict anything that happens. Between chaos magic, 64 randomly appearing personalities, and the collective emotional baggage of the cast, it is hard to know what is going to happen each episode. I definitely recommend the show.


Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors

Disney taking over Marvel allowed them to create some new shows. This show uses mostly previously untapped Marvel characters and throws them together. The cast of the origin movie has Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan), Patriot, Squirrel Girl, Quake, America Chavez, and Inferno. I never thought Squirrel Girl would ever be adapted but they got her pitch-perfect as the hyperactive but insanely smart member of the team. They do not shy away from Kamala Khan’s Muslim heritage and culture. Quake is once again voiced by Chloe Bennett (reprising her role from Agents of Shield. America Chavez is accurately portrayed as the Latinx that she is and they may go on to let her be gay. They definitely kept her two moms in her story which was great. The movie is about trusting the right people and actually gets into a bit of a racism allegory. It partly focuses on distrust between the Inhumans and humans. It is a lighthearted bit of superheroism and I was happy to see how naturally diverse it was. I definitely recommend it and I hope they do more with it (beyond the shorts already on Disney+).

Music of the Week:
Kate NV – Plans

Goodnight Goodbye – Dad Dancing

Tetrarch – I’m Not Right

Disco Inferno – In Sharky Water

My Fault – Christine Nguyen

Weekly Update:
– This week’s theme is Pride Superheroes
– I watched more Elementary Season 2
– I watched more Flash Season 6
– I watched more Arrow Season 8
– I watched more Buzzfeed Unsolved
– I started watching Supergirl Season 5
– I watched more The Good Wife Season 1
– I watched more Riverdale Season 4
– I started Supernatural Season 15

30 Day Challenge – Film Pt. 2

June 8, 2020

7 – A film that you will never get tired of

I never really get tired of Fifth Element. It is one of the most quotable movies that I have ever watched. The movie is unashamedly wacky and does not get hung up on taking itself too seriously. The world-building is wild and instantly made me want to know so much more about it. The comedy is strong and plays off of the characters and the plot in a very natural way. This might be low key one of the best movies that Bruce Willis was ever in as it allows him to exercise his comedy and drama chops. Milla Jovovich is a true action star and she really nails the role of a strange but wonderful alien. Some people find Chris Tucker annoying but somehow his character absolutely works for me. Ian Holm is underrated in this but great. The chameleon Gary Oldman is absolutely great as a melodramatic villain. It is still probably my favorite movie soundtrack, full of brilliant techno and a two-part opera piece that is legendary. The director Luc Besson still remains one of my favorites and this is the movie that made me always give him the benefit of the doubt.

8 – A film where you liked the soundtrack more

City of Angels sounded like an interesting concept when it came out but it turned out to be a pretty boring movie. You would think that Nicholas Cage is an earthbound angel who falls in love would be a recipe for a weird but fun movie. It was not even wacky and strange like a lot of so bad that they are good Nicholas Cage movies. It kind of once again proved that Nicholas Cage is at his worst when he is playing a romantic lead instead of a weirdo. However, it does have an absolutely great soundtrack full of bangers. Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, John Lee Hooker, Goo Goo Dolls, Alanis Morisette, and Frank Sinatra are all excellent. Sarah MacLachlan, Peter Gabriel, and U2 are not as good but still alright. An absolutely forgettable movie that spawned a great soundtrack that it never deserved.

9 – A film you hate that everyone else liked

I just never really liked A Christmas Story. I have only recently started to like Christmas movies again period but this one was particularly dismal. Everybody seems to go crazy over this movie every holiday season but I never got it. First, the movie has no coherent plot. It is instead a collection of meandering stories that really do not amount to much. The whole movie feels depressing to me. It follows a family that does not really seem to like each other as they try to get through the holidays. Many of the stories have little to no effect on the rest of the movie and are forgotten as soon as they are done. The pacing is off because the movie is constantly narrated and cuts away to the main character’s fantasies. The narration is often unnecessary as it explains things and character motivation seconds before the movie shows what the narration just said. It is not a happy movie to watch during the holidays or any other time. People seem to love it but it is definitely not my cup of tea.

10 – Your favorite superhero film

This is a really tough one. This is my favorite genre currently and I have not watched a lot of superhero movies that I did not like. I particularly like the Marvel Cinematic Universe as anybody who has read this blog can attest to. However, I think I am going to have to go with Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse. The movie came out of left field to create a beautiful and nuanced superhero origin story. Miles Morales was a really great innovation on the Spider-Man mythos in the comic books and the character is infused with both Latino and Black culture. This movie did not shy away from that. Miles is an instantly likable character and his journey to become Spider-Man is beautiful. It is also extremely accessible as I have talked to many who are not exactly superhero fans who fell in love with the movie. The animation is some of the most fluid and beautiful that I have seen. They also managed to bring in Spider-Gwen (aka Ghost Spider) and make her not just “the girl”. She is strong, competent but a full character. There is also one of my favorite versions of Peter Parker in the over the hill, dad Spidey who has been around the block. The movie is just so good.

11 – A film you like from your least favorite genre

I do not dismiss any genre offhand but I think the genre that I watch the least is the Romantic Comedy. I think I am still going to go with Trainwreck. Written by and starring Amy Schumer, it is a very real and dark version of a romantic comedy. A lot of romantic comedies follow two horrible people who try to trick each other into a relationship or try to destroy each other. In this, they lean into it by making Schumer’s character into a horrible person and have her truly seek to change. Additionally, she is joined by the genius Bill Hader who is also a somewhat flawed character. The movie includes an honest character arc that is not finished over the course of a day or two but instead goes on for a much longer period. It also confronts alcoholism and more deep-seated emotional problems than most romantic comedies. On top of that, it has Brie Larson in an excellent role. It also has actual comedy which is surprising since it is directed by Judd Apatow. It is not an easy movie to watch but it was so rewarding.

12 – A film that you hate from your favorite genre

That’s a tough one but I think I’ll go with Justice League because it was the culmination of a long project built on rotten foundations. I loathed Man of Steel because it took a potentially interesting character and wasted them. It made me actively like Superman less. This is why I never watched Batman v. Superman which apparently managed to screw up Batman and Lex Luthor. I knew for sure that was true after watching Justice League. It was not a matter of accuracy for me. I grew up with these legendary characters so I have seen so many iterations and versions of them. The problem was that the writing and direction sucked all of the life out of them. They were all assholes but not likable assholes. The attempts at comedy were either cliche or just too colorless. The dialogue is just awkward and clunky. There are a ton of plot lines that just end without being resolved. It poisoned the well to the point where I definitely did not want to see Aquaman after experiencing him in that movie. I am wary of anything that DC produces from here on out. (Birds of Prey rocked, though). Hopefully they change their plan and actually try to make good standalone movies. Now that Snyder is out, they may be able to find better and more diverse directors and writers.

Hesper’s Web Pt. 7

June 6, 2020

They all held hands and Gwendolyn wished them back up to the castle. Gwendolyn’s little eyes sparked with hope and relief to see that castle again. The adventurers gathered around the little girl as they approached the gates for the second time. Mariel put her hand on the girl’s shoulder.

“Gwendolyn,” Mariel said. “Things are going to get violent. We are going to have to fight that thing in there and I want you to be prepared for that.”

“I understand,” Gwendolyn said. “You guys are adventurers. You fight the bad things.”

“We do indeed,” Luther said. “We are here to protect you and that means getting that thing out.”

“If we could ask you to stay here, we would,” Dimitri said. “It’s going to be too dangerous.”

“But we need you with us because you have the power here,” Asher said. “You’re our back up, kiddo.”

Gwendolyn nodded timidly and smiled. “Okay,” she said.

Dimitri and Luther led the way but Gwendolyn nodded at the gate and it opened easily for them. There were no preliminaries this time. No mermaids. No unicorns. They arrived immediately in the throne room once again. The Thing That Was Not Gwendolyn locked eyes with Gwendolyn and, to her credit, Gwendolyn did not back down. Asher played a little tune to bolster Gwendolyn’s confidence. Everybody readied their weapons and there was a stillness. Sir Buttonface stepped into the middle of it all with his huge weapon. Something passed over the bear’s face as he saw Gwendolyn.

“Sir Buttonface!” Gwendolyn said with a pout. “You stop that this instant! You are my knight.”

“Master Gwendolyn!” Buttonface said. “What is going on?” He looked back at The Thing on the throne and clutched his weapon a little tighter. “Traitor! Abomination!” He raised his weapon.

“Sir Buttonface!” Mariel called out. “You need to protect Master Gwendolyn. We’ll take care of that thing.”

Sir Buttonface nodded but looked sad. “I apologize for what I have done earlier,” he said. “I will make it up to you.”

“You have nothing to apologize for,” Dimitri said. He was a man of honor and understood how the knight must feel having been fooled and controlled by something so foul.

“Speak for yourself,” Dina said. “Ouch.” However, she was smiling because what were they going to do? Hold a grudge against a teddy bear?

“Protect the girl, Sir Knight,” Luther said. “Let’s do this thing.”

Sir Buttonface scooped up Gwendolyn and lept to the other end of the throne room. She clutched his fur and brought herself closer to him to comfort herself. He shielded her with his body. Gwendolyn was safe and now it was time to get down to business.

The Thing on the Throne stood up and turned into a black, crystalline figure before multiplying into several creatures. They had sharp claws and glowing green eyes. Nobody had seen anything like them but nobody hesitated. They attacked as one but this time there was not an over-sized teddy bear knight in their way. With Gwendolyn returned to her palace, the scales were balanced once again. The battle was not short but one by one the creatures were shattered until one remained. The remaining Thing gibbered and cursed in some dialect from beyond. Mariel focused and summoned a chest and Dimitri and Dina dumped the creature into it. Mariel locked the chest and it disappeared.

“We’re done here,” Mariel said to Luther. “It’s over.” The two of them exchanged a look.

“I guess we can wake up then,” Dina said, looking around.

“I don’t think we got much rest,” Fern said as she stretched.

“We’ll get some soon enough,” Mariel said. “Ironically we have to wake up first.”

“Because that makes complete sense,” Dina said.

“Dream magic is strange,” Mariel said with a shrug. “It’s why people rarely mess with it.”

Gwendolyn and Buttonface walked toward them. “Is it over?” Gwendolyn asked. “Is the bad thing gone?” She seemed to be growing stronger, gaining her footing again in her own mind.

“We’re taking it away,” Asher said. “You can wake up now. We’ll see you when we’re all awake.”

“Okay,” Gwendolyn said. “Thank you.” Her smile warmed the hearts of the adventurers, really the only thanks they needed.

A bright white started to fill the chamber and everybody covered their eyes.

Media Update 6/4/20

June 4, 2020


The Good Wife

My mom had told me about this series ages ago but I do not always rush to watch what she is watching. However, I was watching a YouTube series (mentioned below) that went over the first episode and I was intrigued. The show is about the wife of a District Attorney who put her law career on hold when she had kids with her husband. However, when her husband is imprisoned, she must return to working for a big firm. I really love the cases that they take as each is a bit of a good mystery and usually has a fair bit of intrigue. Juliana Margulies plays the title character and she is instantly likable and fun to follow. Josh Charles and Christine Baranski play the two name partners of the firm and often mentor or advise the main character. My favorite character is the in house investigator played by Archie Panjabi who is snarky and very cunning. I am excited that the show goes a full five seasons and that there is a sequel spinoff. The characters and writing are both very good and it is easy to watch episode after episode. I recommend this show.


LegalEagle

I love YouTube because you get all of these great niche shows made by enthusiastic content creators. In passing, I saw this show pop up on my feed but I was wary of this particular thing. What caught my interest but also triggered my alarms was the term “Lawyer Reacts”. I was worried that this would be a sarcastic series about how horrible shows and movies about legal issues are because they are “not accurate”. Instead, I found out that the host of the show is really entertaining and absolutely loves to watch fiction with the law in it. He enthusiastically examines each movie or television episode (and even a music video) and helpfully points out how things would really go. He freely recognizes that most shows get things wrong because of dramatic license or on purpose. Also, most shows and movies do not tend to follow the most ethical attorneys. He also sometimes relates real-life weird cases (something I have done here as well). I have posted his episode on The Bee Movie above (he and I are agreed that it is a horrible and weird movie). I definitely recommend this show (and it’s free!)


Damages

I watched this show because I had heard some rumblings about it and it has a pretty good cast on paper. The show is about a young attorney who joins the firm run by a cut-throat attorney. The main draw of the show is Glenn Close who plays the name partner of the firm who gets to act like Cruella de Ville got a law degree. We also get Ted Danson who plays the billionaire who Close is trying to crush through a class action suit. Both of them are deliciously evil and take turns just being the worst. The actual star of the show is supposed to be Rose Byrne but, at least in early episodes, she feels a bit like a blank slate for everyone to use as a prop. I am willing to give it the benefit of the doubt but the show feels a little bit overdramatic but there is a sort of mystery that somewhat intrigues me. I am not sure I can recommend the show but if you see that I am still watching it, it’s probably gotten good.

Music of the Week:
Slutever – Teen Mom

Avril Lavigne – We Are Warriors

Flatbush Zombies – Monica

Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande – Rain on Me

Dawn Ray’d – Black Cloth

 

Weekly Update:
– This week’s theme is “To the Courtroom”
– I watched more Rizzoli and Isles Season 3
– I watched more Elementary Season 2
– I watched more Bob’s Burgers Season 10
– I watched more Riverdale Season 4
– I watched more What We Do In the Shadows Season 2
– I watched more Flash Season 6
– I watched more Arrow Season 8
– I watched more Buzzfeed Unsolved
– I started watching Supergirl Season 5

Missed Post – Prey

June 1, 2020

This post is late but it is technically still Monday so I am calling it a win. I had planned to continue the 30 Day Film Challenge but I ended up feeling burnt out all weekend. On top of that, I did not sleep much because our country is currently figuratively (and sometimes literally) on fire and still literally diseased. I was about to go to sleep on Saturday when I noticed flashing red and blues on my blinds. I freaked because Baltimore cops are notoriously corrupt and police across the country are on the rampage. I am white and I was scared so I can only imagine how people of color must feel. Luckily it ended up being nothing but it rattled me and I ended up having very little sleep and all of it was restless.

Our country is in a bad way right now because we have a tendency to hide from our problems until they explode. We have largely ignored racial inequality since before the United States was even a country. We also allowed something as corruptible and flawed as the very concept of Police to exist. As it stands, cops only stand for themselves and to protect the property of the wealthy. It is a system absolutely poisoned by capitalism from the start. I stand with the people staging peaceful protests across the country and against any government opposition to those protests. Meanwhile, police are attacking and silencing protestors, journalists, and bystanders. Many of our politicians are not to be trusted and voting is absolutely wrecked by a global pandemic (but is generally rigged anyway).

So with all of that going on, I did not write this past weekend and instead sought some good escapism. I binge-watched a lot of my shows but most importantly I started playing a new game that I downloaded. That game is 2017’s Prey which is absolutely fantastic.

The game puts you in a science fiction world where people have developed something called a Neuromod. Basically, they are able to package human skills and abilities into injections that are applied directly to the brain. You can learn things by simply injected brain matter into your head. It is a disturbing but intriguing idea. This is coupled with having to fight off a horrific alien threat. They are called the Typhon and they are all shapeless creatures most of which can easily ambush you. The game is filled with constant paranoia. The smallest of the Typhon are called Mimics and can transform into practically any object in the game. Did that coffee cup just move? Why are there two chairs in front of that desk?

I am sure there have been essays and think pieces written on why we flock to horror in the bad times but I will leave that to other people. Besides, I have already talked about it. I have been playing horror-filled video games lately and my mind is already turning to what I will watch for Halloween. I am starting to come out of the fog from this weekend so hopefully, I will not miss another update any time soon.

Stay Safe Out There.


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