Archive for the ‘T.V.’Category

Mad Men Madness

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Season finale tonight.  What’s in the future for ole Don Draper?  Watching Jon Hamm play a man descending into a pit of alcoholism-laden hell has been both compelling and uncomfortable.  It’s hard to believe we’re at the end of another season.

In other T.V. viewing news, The Killing is a few episodes in and I’m loving the new season.  Peter Sarsgaard.  Holy cow.  He’s owning his role as convicted murderer, Ray Seward.

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And Linden is back, and Holder–my two favorite cops of all time.  Great chemistry there. Here’s to hoping that Joel Kinnaman gets some award recognition this year.

True Blood has started up again.  It’s pure fun, one of those shows where you check your brain at the door and jump right in.

I’m not much into reality shows, but I do love me some Masterchef.  Joe, buddy, if I could bottle that look for my writing, I’d win at everything.

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And, I taught myself how to poach an egg . . . in boiling water.  Thank you, Masterchef.  And Joe.

23

06 2013

Franken-Eye & Entertainment Babble

I have a new eye.  Okay, new lens IN the eye.  I have early onset of cataracts from a medication I’ve been taking since I was in my early twenties. Nice, eh?  Clear up your lungs, but how about some cataracts with those cortisteroids?   What’s amazingly cool is how my vision has changed now.  Below is a fairly accurate image of the change.

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In one eye, things are blue and sharp and awesome.  In the other, it looks like it did in Fort Collins during the High Park fire.  Another three weeks and I’ll be rockin’ the vivid colors in both fronts.

I haven’t done much writing lately because of the eyes and because I’m getting one of my Ph.D. application packets completed.  Writing samples, letters of recommendation, ordering transcripts.  On top of that, I have to finish a grant for the Literacy Center and finish some observational coding for the game.  My break is pretty much over.  Oh well.

In Television News . . .

The 3rd to the last Fringe episode airs tonight.  Looking forward to it but sad as well.  What in the heck are the Bishops going to do?  There’s a reset coming and because this is Fringe, they won’t shy away from it.  How will the show end?

Arrow is getting incredibly good.  It needs to come back from hiatus.  NOW.  Wonderful writing.  You can feel this show is going somewhere.  They’re planting seeds all over.

American Horror Story. WTF, I love you?  Jessica Lange is so full of winning!

Downton Abbey, hmmm.  Not sure what to think.  Seems to have lost its magic.  Why the heck does Mary come across as some kind of crazy gold-digger?  They also need to get Mr. Bates out of jail.  He’s boring in Jail.  He needs to be in the house where he can put the snotty servants in their place.

In Movie News . . .

This is 40 was hilarious.

Need to see Django.

Need to see Zero Dark Thirty.  I’ve been a huge Katherine Bigelow fan since Near Dark. Yes, once upon a time Vampires were Vampires.  I smell a vampire post coming on, one dedicated to the vampires of literary and movie past that don’t suck.

 

11

01 2013

All Work and No Play….

God, I’ve been a bad blogger, but, this also means that I have been quite the prolific writer over the last few months.  Not just crap, but some decent stuff.  I’m on another draft with a new beginning (changed the first 1/3 of the book).

The characters are better.  The story is better.  Last time the writing group saw it, they said, “This is it.  This is THE book.”  Good news.  What also rocks is that the changes I have made will send some exciting ripples into the sequels (and stories beyond all set in the world of Feyn).

I’m nearly finished with my M.Ed. in adult education and am considering applying to a Ph.D. program for next year.  I have funding that is good through 2015 and that can carry over into my Ph.D. program, provided I’m accepted.  It will mean a lot more work, less time to write, but where there is a will . . .


. . . there is a creepy baby picture.

In health news, I had sinus surgery.  Recovery was hardcore with lots of percocet.  I also developed early onset of cataracts and will be having lens transplants soon.  It means two things (in order of importance):

  1. I will get to wear a cool eye patch.
  2. I might not need glasses anymore.

 

As far as Television goes . . .

  • The Walking Dead rocks this season.
  • Once Upon a Time still sucks and I still watch it, thus I suck.  (Fallacy!)
  • The Winchester boys always satisfy on Supernatural.
  • Being Human season 2 was not as bad as the internet led me to believe.
  • Homeland is awesome, and creepy, and scary and uncomfortable.
  • Fringe was my great find last year.  I am officially a Fringe-o-phile.  Last season is on air now.  (Sniff)
  • Arrow is pretty damn cool.
  • Person of Interest is good.
  • Game of Thrones!!111!!!

 

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Movies . . .

  • Loved the Hobbit.  Interesting additions.  Cannot wait to see Smaug next year.
  • Looper was badass.
  • Spiderman reboot was actually good.  Really good.  I liked it better than the Raimi versions.
  • The Avengers.  Yes.  Just yes.

 

I have this new blog/website.  I’m struggling to figure out the theme.  It’s donking up my media when I try to add pictures (see baby up top) to my blog posts.  This forces me to whip out the html which is not okay.

Writing group tomorrow.  I gave them 3 chapters. Two of them have sex scenes.  I think I’m just a big, dirty, rotten perv.

 

 

27

12 2012

Other Peoples’ Apartments

Keri was the best roommate I ever had.  She was fresh from California, an ex-fiancé in her rearview mirror and I needed a new place to stay.  The one-bedroom near Cheeseman Park had been a great little apartment, but I was “edged” out by assholes who were buying up complexes, splashing new paint on the insides and selling them as “condos.”

So, when Keri called saying, “I’m done here, let’s do this roommate thing,” I knew it was time.  We found a ground-floor place off Hampton and I-25, near the freeway, but on the other side of this huge concrete wall that apparently kept freeway noise to a minimum (it did!), tucked into a mixture of condos and small, one-level houses with pristine landscaping, flowerbeds dotted with pink and yellow and lots of senior citizens watering their lawn by hand.

I don’t think I’ve found a “little piece of heaven” since.

Computing = Scenery

Instead of using the kitchenette area for, well, eating (a la table and chairs) we set up two makeshift desks (three filing cabinets with a long piece of wood across the top).  That way, we could sit next to each other and look out into the courtyard, over our monitors, while we played video games and surfed the web.  I guess that was our way of “getting some outside time.”

The Maintenance Guy

Cory.  That was his name.  He walked around the courtyard without a shirt on, like some kind of Melrose Place pool-god, sweating and tan, carrying hoses sometimes, or pushing a wheelbarrow.  And, like two dirty old cougars, Keri and I would watch him cross back and forth in front of our kitchenette window, heads moving slowly like some kind of slow-motion tennis match.  Ahh, young Cory.  Yes.  Yes.

My Cat’s a Racist

Connie lived upstairs.  She had two cats: Oliver North, a Russian Blue, and Cliffy Claven, a black tabby with white paws and face.  At the time I had Mousie, a white stray that Keri found while visiting in Texas.  Enter, the racial “feud.”

Cliffy was great, except for the fact that if you left the door open for a few seconds, (dragging groceries in or whatnot), Cliffy would invite himself right into our apartment.  My cat, being the b-word she is, would have NONE of that.  Hissing ensued, lots of spitting and arching, and puffiness.  And there was Cliffy, the dopey, confused lug who’d respond by falling on his side and purring.  Maybe my cat was a knockout, you know, Playboy centerfold material.

Did I mention that Cliffy would often appear in the stairwell with lipstick on his mouth?  Crimson Rose.  Burnt Sienna.  Smudges of the stuff on his white, furry maw.  I guess Connie loved her cats.

One day, Connie was there to witness the whole thing.  When Cliffy darted into our apartment, Connie ran after him. “No, Cliffy!  Bad Cliffy!”  On cue, Mousie appeared from around the corner, doing the cat-crabwalk-fluff-up-and-come-at-you-sideways-thing.

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Cliffy flopped and Connie promptly picked him up and said, “Oh Cliffy, that’s a southern belle white kitty.  She doesn’t like black kitties like you.  No she doesn’t! No she doesn’t!  She’s a princess kitty, isn’t she.  Yes she is!”

So, that was the day I found out my cat was a racist, or, maybe she just didn’t like Cliffy pulling a Robert Downey Junior on her turf.  Not sure I’ll ever know the answer to this.

The Blizzard of 2002

It came.  We were snowed in for 3 days.  But, thanks to Keri’s jeep, we ventured out in the thick of it and drove to King Soopers to stock up.  My car, on the other hand, was buried for 5 days straight.  I don’t know how this relates to our apartment coolness, only that it happened while we lived there and it was one of our many proud adventures.

The Texan Goddess Herself

Living with Keri was awesome.  I think that’s what it all boiled down to.  On New Year’s eve when we didn’t have dates or parties to attend, we hunkered down and watched a Sex in the City marathon on HBO.  Hours of it.  Hours and hours.  I could watch it without someone saying, “What in the heck are you watching?” or “God, kill me now.”  We ate that bunk up.  All of it.  Mr. Big.  Miranda’s baby.  Charlotte’s bad engagement picture.  Samantha and her sex-capades.  Yes!

It didn’t end there.  When Glitter came on, we watched that too.  We also watched Joe Millionaire (and had some kind of freaky Ya Ya Sisterhood ritual the same night involving cowboy hats and Wagnerian horned helms).  Oh, and I’m pretty sure we watched Gigli.

When they say a good friend helps you move, but a best friend helps you move a body, well, that’s true.  But, the ultimate test is entertainment junk food.  If you can sit through crap like Honey and Showgirls (God bless you, Gina Gershon) with a friend who understands why you’re crying when Jessica Alba almost loses her dance studio, or actually does the Showgirl jazz fingers with you in synch with Elizabeth Berkeley, well, that’s someone you keep around for a hell of a long time.

In the end, both Keri and I have found our lives.  We’re married.  Have kids.  Homes.  Dogs.  The whole thing.  But, I still think about that apartment, and Corey, and wonder if Cliffy is long gone (Mousie went a few years ago), and if Connie has new cats to kiss.  I wonder who’s living in our apartment and if they knew what kind of disgusting, foul, television-viewing occurred under that roof.

It’s weird.  Apartments.  Condos.  Places you rent.  When I lived off Washington and 14th, long before I moved in with Keri, I remember drug deals going on right outside our back window and I remember when my roomie’s pal came to visit us he found a prostitute named Precious who told me I should find a pimp and get some good money . . . in her freakish, baby voice.  I wonder if she used that voice in bed.  After she was paid.

I don’t know.  Hell, do I want to?

Archived from: 6/1/2012

26

12 2012

T.V. Time

Started a few new programs, dropped a few, added some more.  Overall, television has been pretty good to me over the last few months.

Revenge

I have to say it.  This is one hell of a fun show to watch.  Have you ever watched a show where the main premise is set up–girl wants revenge for her falsely-accused dead father–and the entire first or second season is dedicated to almost getting there, multiple contrived obstacles and tease after tease while the viewers follow that perpetually dangling carrot into never-never land?  You end up forgetting why you started watching in the first place, why you keep tuning in and, most importantly, why you care.

Revenge has our cunning heroine Emily Thorne played by Emily VanCamp, but she doesn’t flounder around weeping and whining, wondering if she’ll ever polish up her dead father’s tarnished name.  Instead, we get to see her succeed–over and over again.  We get to cackle gleefully as one foe after another falls to her meticulously-laid plans.  Yes, we mutter.  Yes, precious!  Obstacles arise in the form of nosy benefactors (Nolan), a pesky grifter and a deliciously evil baddie played by Madeleine Stowe.

It’s fun, but above all else it ditches that tired old story where one obstacle after another must be piled onto the character until there’s really nothing left to care about. Oh, a hurricane blows them to an island.  Oh, the island is full of man-eating chickens.  Oh, the chickens have superpowers.  Oh, the heroes are tossed in jail.  Oh, the jail is set on fire. After a while you give up.  External conflict overload.

Revenge goes deeper, shows us that despite Emily’s successes, she is her own worst enemy and the biggest conflict of all is not what’s going on around her, but what’s happening at the soul/psyche level.  The first line of the pilot series says it all:

“Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.”

The Walking Dead

I’m usually the last to get on the bandwagon with shows like this.  Part of me wonders if it’s all hype.  Another part of me doesn’t want to get pulled into a series only to have it yanked away.  (I’m looking at you, FOX network for your ill-timed cancellation of Firefly.)

Thanks to Netflix, season 1 of The Walking Dead made its way into my living room.  I watched about 5 minutes before I shut it off.  It was one of those shows–one that I had to share with my hubby, and if I started watching it without him, I’m finish the whole shebang in a matter of two days.

We were hooked from the start.  The episode “Vatos,” has to be one of the best episodes of any television show I have ever watched.  My mouth was so slack by the end that I needed help picking it up off the floor.  (Insert Daffy Duck image.)

Thoughtful, grueling, creepy, everything I love in a television series.  Oh, and zombies too.  Lots of zombies.

Season 2 started off with a bang.  Unfortunately, it was very easy to see where the creativity changed hands.  It went from being a smooth, well-paced show to something else . . .

Exposition.

And more exposition.

Dramatic monologues to each other, to nobody, to one’s self, to dead people, to Jesus on the cross.

Now, it seems to have taken an upturn again, gotten away from the 5-minute long speechy nonsense.  That’s good.  Very good.  More Daryl.  More zombies.  It would be nice to have a female lead that didn’t make you want to throw yourself onto a large spike, but I’ll tolerate that . . . for now.

Falling Skies

I’m working my way through episodes on the ole DVR.  I like it.   A little slow at times, a little too much of the angsty teen who has to be shitty to his parent(s), even during the alien invasion.  Okay.  Whatever. But, overall, I’m liking it.

30 Rock

I’m late on this one too, but very happy to have started it.  Alec Baldwin, you are America’s Treasure.  Don’t let some uppity flight attendant tell you differently.

Archived from: 12/29/2012

26

12 2012

Dear U.S.A., Learn from the Brits

Merlin

I started watching Merlin a few months ago (Netflix streaming for the WIN!).  And the show is wonderful.  It’s thoughtful, entertaining, dramatic, humorous and addicting.

Very very addicting.

It’s so rare to find a show like this, especially in the US where everything is cookie-cutter format.  Maybe Merlin IS cookie-cutter (in Britain) but heck if I know what that means.  All I know is that I feel safe in this show’s hands, as weird as that sounds.

How many times have you been burned by a great show?  Only to ….

1. Watch it, get into it and cry when it’s cancelled in the height of its prime (Firefly,SG:Universe).

2. Watch it, get hooked and BAM!  Writer/creative director change.  It all falls apart (Heroes).

Shows like Merlin show me what’s wrong with American television, show me that it’s more about ratings and numbers here, all about the corporate needs as opposed to viewer wants.

(The only primetime network that seems to break this mold more often than not is the CW with “work horse” shows like SupernaturalSmallville, etc).

I guess that’s why we see the good stuff on cable?  Mad MenBreaking Bad, a whole slew of HBO, Showtime and Starz serials.

Why can’t our networks get it right?

Merlin spoils me, same as Being Erica spoiled me (Canada) and Being Humanspoiled me (Britain, though the US version is killer too).

What gives, USA?


Merlin Links

Rupert Young (Sir Leon – he’s our favorite here)

Official Site

Colin Morgan’s Website (Merlin)

Bradley James (Arthur)

Katie McGrath (Morgana)

Angel Coulby (Gwen)

Archived from: 10/13/2011

26

12 2012

Supernatural, Lost, BSG

Supernatural

The Winchester brothers are back to kick off the last half of season 4.  I have to say this is one incredible find.  I’m grateful that it’s been given a home on CW–a station that allows for “workhorse” type shows to plod along, despite uber-ratings.  Thing is, Supernatural should have more viewers.  It goes beyond the teen-fluff that you usually find on CW.  It’s dark, gritty and half the time I’m wondering how the censors let them get away with saying “dick” and “douche” all the time.

The Winchester boys are heading for another big rift.  Dean has his girl-crushes on forbidden targets: fallen angel, reaper.  Meanwhile, Sammy’s been using his no-no powers against demons galore.  Methinks it will be too much for him to handle in the end.  He’ll need some help from big brother on this one.

Battlestar Galactica

Two more episodes left until the season ends.  It’s difficult to predict exactly what will go down.  Creator, Ron Moore, isn’t one to play the safe, predictable route.  Last night’s episode set things up for the 2-hour finale.  My thoughts are that “Earth” is still out there, Hera will be saved.  Athena and Helo will perish leaving Baltar and Caprica Six to raise the child.  “You will become a father,” Head-Six told him.  And with Sam controlling the Galactica, we’ll have a wild ride ahead.

Many deaths.  Much sadness when Galactica blows (and we all know this is coming.)  Sam will go with her.  Starbuck will live, so will Lee.  Roslin and Adama will go down as well.  The only thing I can predict with absolute certainty is that I’ll be crying like a wee baby when all is said and done.

Lost

Lost has been at its best the last two seasons.  Slow-moving?  Too many questions?  Things change.  Lost is changing.  I’m on board and enjoying myself immensely.  Sawyer is awesome, so is Locke.  Ben remains the most awesome of all.  Let’s hope that Abrams doesn’t pull an “Alias” here and frack with the fans too much.  Maybe he learned his lesson first time around.

Archived from: 3/13/2009

26

12 2012