Thursday, April 17, 2014

Spring show reviews

Every Spring the networks roll out some new shows trying to fill the gaps left by the failed Fall shows. Hope springs eternal--maybe this time they'll find something that catches on! But from what I have seen so far...I'm not sure we have any big hits. Here are some capsule reviews of some of the new shows I've managed to catch!

Resurrection: what would you do if your long dead loved ones suddenly started coming home? Looking the exact same as they did at the time of their death and with no memory of anything since their unfortunate...accidents? This set of circumstance is the central plot of ABC's Resurrection, which is actually not too bad. In fact, it's pretty good, if a bit meandering.

In the small town of Arcadia, Missouri, people are starting to come back from the dead. Not like zombie hordes, but one or two people here and there. They aren't hungry for brains, but just want to get back to their lives. Except they've been gone for quite some time...and their families aren't sure whether they are the same. All the medical tests seem to indicate and they are normal healthy humans, but clearly something strange is afoot.

Well, that's not ominous at all.

I am enjoying this show more than I thought I would, I think in part because it's way darker than I expected. Not everyone who has come back is a good person and the show is doing a nice job of teasing out subtle clues about the how and why of the resurrections. I genuinely want to find out what happens next and to know what the hell is going on. The cast is also pretty great, especially the always good Omar Epps as a US immigration agent (random, I know) who finds himself at the middle of the mystery.

Resurrection airs Sunday evenings at 9:00 EST and you can catch up with all the episodes over on the show's website.

Jim Henson's Creature Shop Challenge: Syfy's new show is clearly trying to capture the same magic as the fantastic Face Off. Unfortunately, it just doesn't work for me.

In JHCSC, the contestants are challenged to create and fabricate creatures that are Jim Henson-y in style. Human actors/puppeteers bring the creatures to life (usually from inside the large puppet body) and they are "shot" on a soundstage in the Jim Henson studios in front of the panel of the judges.

I like the concept, but the show just doesn't have the same entertainment value as Face Off. Maybe it's because the challenges are a little more limited as they are constrained by the muppet-style of the overall show's conceit, but I just find it hard to get into. I'll give it a few more episodes, but unless things pick up I don't think I'll stick with it.

Jim Henson's Creature Shop Challenge airs Tuesday evenings at 10:00 EST on Syfy.

Turn: It doesn't really matter if this new AMC show is terrible (it isn't), because I am going to watch it no matter what. There are two reasons:

1) It takes place during the Revolutionary War, a criminally un-represented area of American history in movies and television.

2) The cast includes JJ Feild who played the dreamy Mr. Henry Tilney in the BBC's most recent adaptation of Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey. You bros might know him as "the English guy in the beret" who was part of Captain America's team in Captain America: The First Avenger.

It takes a real man to rock a cravat. 

The good news is the show isn't terrible, hurray! It is a bit confusing though, so make sure you are sitting on the thinking side of your couch and are paying attention. It's not really the type of show you can just have on in the background while you wander around your apartment picking up and putting away all your shoes.*

The show tells the story of America's first spy ring...which sounds fancy but really just means it's about this farmer (Jamie Bell, sans Billy Elliot dancing shoes, alas) who lives in British-occupied New York and ends up reluctantly spying for the Continental Army. I say reluctantly not because he was a British loyalist, but because he basically just wants to live with his family and grow cabbages or lettuce or something. But you know, these things happen. And I guess he ends up forming something called the Culper Ring and inventing modern spycraft? This is all according to the show's website. After the first two episodes the spies have only just figured that maybe hanging a special petticoat on a wash line isn't the best way to communicate with each other. Baby steps.

Anyway, it's enjoyable if a bit complicated, but the attention to detail in the sets and costumes is nice. Also, JJ Feild. So you should watch it.

TURN airs Sunday evenings at 9:00 EST on AMC. You can watch the two episodes that have already aired over on the website.


*Just me?


Friday, April 11, 2014

Once More Into the Breach, Dear Friends

Game of Thrones is back, everyone, and Maggie Cats and I are here to chat about it as per usual. Season four’s opener, “Two Swords”, brought us back to Westeros in the aftermath of last season’s brutal and climactic Red Wedding. Though both of us have read the books, the chat below is almost completely spoiler free with one or two very minor exceptions.


 Maggie Cats:  So. Thoughts?

 Clovis:  Broadly, it's always good to see these characters again. And by "these characters" I mean Arya.
I really liked how they're showing her taking one step closer to becoming a total badass.

 Maggie Cats:  Well, if by total badass you mean sociopath, then yes, yes they are.

 Clovis:  But that's the thing, she kind of is one, right? Like, Arya is totally the Batman of Westeros. She's seen her family destroyed in front of her, she's now traveling the world to learn how to become the ultimate badass to go back to destroy those who did her wrong.

 Maggie Cats:  I mean, once she puts on a cape and a mask I will see your point more clearly.

 Clovis:  Given that she sometimes wears a cloak, she's basically only two pointy ears away from becoming a dark knight avenger.

"Lannisters are a superstitious, cowardly lot..."

 Maggie Cats:  I would say she is more of archetype than Batman specifically, but what's great is she kind of busts through the archetype because she is a 12 year old girl.

 Clovis:  Yeah, exactly. And she's learning from the cruelty of everyone around her. She's getting corrupted, but in a way it's the kind of corruption she was always likely to get if she could have gotten her way and been allowed to be a knight.

 Maggie Cats:  Westeros is a cruel, cruel world. it doesn't pay to be ANYBODY.

 Clovis:  Except maybe Littlefinger. FOR NOW...

 Maggie Cats:  Like last year, I was so impressed by the actual structure of the episode. I was impressed that we managed to see almost all the characters and have great moments with all of them.

 Clovis:  I feel like this show has consistently done that well - all the seasons' first episodes do a good job of bringing you back to each character.

 Maggie Cats: AND we met Prince Oberyn. Whom I already adore.

 Clovis:  I liked that they kept him bisexual! I was worried that would get washed away.

"I will attract ALL THE THINGS!"

 Maggie Cats:  Again, HBO. The more sexual the better. I don't understand what it is about HBO that makes even the basic craftsmanship of their shows so much better than network television. It can't just be money.

 Clovis:  I think it's also the commitment that HBO generally puts into seeing something from the bigger picture. That said, sometimes they still tank. This is the network that cancelled Carnivale, after all.

 Maggie Cats:  Still never seen it

 Clovis:  It was amazeballs. I will have to do a blog post. Note to self... But speaking of perplexing, why was Daario played by a different person? The show totally pulled a Darren on us. 

 Maggie Cats:  Oh, it's the same actor who plays Finnick in The Hunger Games. I assumed it was because of his shooting schedule. [Ed note: Actually, Daario was originally played by Ed Skrein, who left Game of Thrones to take up a role in the Transporter movie franchise. Finnick in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire was played by Sam Clafin. In fairness, Skrein and Clafin do look a lot alike.]

 Clovis:  Also, having now read the books (all bloody 5000 pages of them) I'm kind of disappointed that Daario isn't as garish in the show as he is in the books. I liked all the descriptions of his weird blue hair.

 Maggie Cats:  I agree, I wonder why THAT would be something they would change. Maybe they are going to have evolve into that as they spend more time in the city?

 Clovis:  I suppose the producers wanted to keep the character more in the world that they've established? Grittier and less bright? [Ed. Note: it’s amazing what you can find online. More info here about the shift from a prettier Daario to the new one.]

 Maggie Cats:  but it seems odd not to follow through those notes. Perhaps, and also set him up as a very romantic lead. Remember, in the books Dany doesn't go for his shtick for a loooong time.

Before.

After.

 Clovis:  That's true. (Spoilers!)

 Maggie Cats:  I mean, it's clear she's going for it now. She is charmed despite herself. Who wouldn't be, right? I hope they make him a bit swarmier.

 Clovis:  Agreed - I like him a bit smarmy. Makes him more interesting when he's not so earnest. Another thing that's different, but I'm enjoying is how much more developed Margaery is in the show relative to the book and the possible hint that she's going to get more screen time with Brienne.

 Maggie Cats:  oh, god yes, Margaery and her grandmother are two of my favorite characters. Margaery is one smart cookie, but I think she is also a genuinely kind person. When she took Brienne's arm in friendship it felt real.

 Clovis:  It would make a neat change of pace to have someone who is a schemer and a game player, but not have her be a total ass as well. That's a different combination than we've seen.

 Maggie Cats:  Maybe she is just that good at manipulation, but I feel that she is just a nice person. So I am sure she will raped, mutilated, and murdered sometime very soon.

 Clovis:  It's bound to happen. Though, maybe she could end up like a Queen Elizabeth - a good player, but also someone who is generally beloved by people. Or maybe I'm just opening my heart to be stomped on by GRRM and the rest of the team because I've never learned my lesson.

 Maggie Cats:  In my perfect world, Bran ends up overlord with the West with Margaery as Queen, Tyrion as the Hand, and Arrya, the head of the Kinsguard. Actually strike that –  Margaery is in charge of everything, Bran is the master builder, Dany can have the East.

 Clovis:  Podrick takes over Littlefinger's whore houses. The whores go along with this VERY willingly.

 Maggie Cats:  YES, PODRICK! I am trying to remember...but I think in the books he knew all the Dornish house sigils as well. Love that he is smart and sexy. He would totally be the hot nerd in our modern world.

"They say this cat Podrick's a baaaaad mutha - SHUT YO MOUTH! Talking 'bout Pod..."

 Clovis:  He kind of is in Westeros. Basically, it's only going to be so long before some enterprising writer goes back and retells the entire Game of Thrones story from the perspective of Podrick, "Rosencranz and Guildenstern are Dead"-style.

 Maggie Cats:  I would read that. Change of topic: do you think Tywin knows Jamie's REAL reason for wanting to stay in Kings Landing? So he can fuck his sister, I mean.

 Clovis:  Oh he totally does. He doesn't want to admit it, but there's a part of his brain that knows.

 Maggie Cats:  And what is Cercei's ailment do you think? I don't remember anything from the books about it so discussion shouldn't be a spoiler. Maybe it's the dreaded "change.”

 Clovis:  Yeah, that's was suspicious. I mean, she didn't have the "sudden cough of death" that would suggest she's about to die of tuberculosis, so I'm not sure.

 Maggie Cats:  if it was set in the 1800s she totally would have been hacking. Maybe she has alcohol-related issues.

 Clovis:  Perhaps (avoiding spoilers here) given where Cercei's story arch is about to go in the books, they've written something else into that to make it more poignant or something? Or they could go full soap opera and we could find out that she's pregnant from sleeping with that cousin of hers.

 Maggie Cats:  Perhaps! I like not knowing everything that is going to happen.

 Clovis:   I think they're wise to make slight deviations from the books and give us different stories. The Arya/Tywin scenes from Season 2 were some of my favorites - I loved how well those scenes worked. And they're nowhere in the books.

 Maggie Cats:  almost all of my favorite moments are actually scenes between characters not in the book, like Cersei/Robert Season 1, Arya/Tywin Season 2, and any time Littlefinger and Varys bitch at each other. FLOVE!

 Clovis:  All the more reason why I'm hoping for more between Brienne and Margaery. Those two would make for some interesting scenes given that Brienne actually loved Renly and Margaery, well, probably didn't but was willing to play the game.

 Maggie Cats:  Good point. I like scenes with Margaery and anybody.

"OMG Totes BFF!"

 Clovis:  So without skirting too close to the spoilers, how quickly do we think we're getting to the royal wedding?

 Maggie Cats:  It looked like next episode, but I don't believe it.

 Clovis:  The first ep said it was two weeks again “in world” time. I'm eager to see how they do this. I imagine we'll have lots to chat about after that happens.

 Maggie Cats:  Most definitely!! I love this show. I enjoyed the first season but wouldn't say I loved it, but as they get more and more into it (and surprise me with changes from the books) I really love it.

 Clovis:  I'm just impressed it ever got made. I read this article that points out all the previous shows that needed to fail for us to get Game of Thrones.


And with that, we’re out for this week. Tune in again next week for discussion following Season four’s second episode, titled “The Lion and the Rose.”

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Television! Now Fortified With Morality!

Going back to when I was a kid, there were certain rules in my house regarding television. One rule was “don’t sit too close” on the thought that an expansive view of a screen that took up my entire field of vision would somehow melt my eyes. (In retrospect, given my need for corrective lenses, that one may not be off.) Another rule involved what I wasn’t allowed to watch after 10pm, which for years I assumed was some secret cache of information that would blow the lid of the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, and the truth about the reality of Batman, but turns out it had more to do with swearing and lower-cut dresses.

But there was always one maxim that overruled all others; one propagated by everyone from my grandmother to my teachers to the slightly scary old neighbor woman who lived next to our house: Too much TV will rot your brain.

Silly television. That's what my smart phone is for.

The notion that watching too much television would permanently warp my development, both moral and intellectual, was taken as a given. It was rooted in a firm discomfort with the notion that this magic box was going to create a legion of unintelligent, immoral deviants that would populate the world and cause things like the decline of the church and the end of wholesome family entertainment about singing families who perform for Nazis. 

It’s into this mindset that panic over the rise of reality television has really taken root in a small echo chamber of the world. (One that is, ironically, increasingly becoming accessible to people who fear that going away from The Way Things Used to Be through another temptation of modernity – the computer.) that panic scaled significant heights with MTV’s reality franchise 16 and Pregnant and the show’s three spinoff series: Teen Mom, Teen Mom 2, and Teen Mom 3. (Note to people who don’t watch this stuff – yes, those are the real titles. I was suspicious too.)

"We're empowered!"

Since 2009, the four shows have followed the stories of teenage high school girls through their pregnancy and first year of motherhood, a formula that has been perfect for MTV because not only does it bring in teen viewers but it also gives moral crusaders something to scream about and those who are secretly or not-so-secretly titillated by sexually active teenage girls things something to drool over. The predictions when these shows began were dire: They would ruin society, they would make pregnancy into something that would be glamorous for teenage girls what with the promise of a TV series dedicated to your pregnancy and the attendant People Magazine cover spreads that went with them, that we’ve done wrong by Our Girls by not making them into proper ladies who knew how to keep their knees together long enough for some boy to agree to marry them first.

But guess what? It hasn’t happened. In fact, turns out the shows have led to a decline in teenage birth rates. Turns out that when teenage girls watch what happens when one of their peers gets pregnant and gets her own TV show, the tendency isn’t to emulate her but to go running to the nearest CVS to stock up on birth control. Seriously – the study in that link above mentions that upon watching the shows, girls show an increase in internet searching and Tweeting about birth control and abortion.

This is, obviously, good news. Aside from the fact that it’s just nice to know that teenage girls are more competent and capable of analysis than we collectively give them credit for, it’s also bodes well for the possibility that I may finally be able to convince my mom to let me watch TV shows late at night for once.


Friday, April 04, 2014

Psych-Out

Another day, another series finale review. This time, guest-blogger Priya tackles the Psych finale. --Maggie Cats

For the uninitiated: Psych is at its core a criminal procedural with a twist. Shawn Spencer (played by the hilarious James Roday) masquerades with the Santa Barbara Police Department as a psychic detective. The twist? He's not really psychic, but is really good with deductive reasoning and sees details that no one else can. Together with his BFF Gus (Dule Hill, whom I LOVE) and a great cast of characters at the SBPD they solve crime and engage in entertaining tom-foolery.

What worked for the show was just how un-serious it was. In an era where CSI, Law and Order, and other macabre shows fill the airways, Psych always took its crime with a level of tongue-in-cheek ridiculousness. With guest stars like Cary Elwes playing an art-thief con artist, or Ally Sheedy as a nefarious crazy villain (who was just one member of the Breakfast Club to appear on the show) they upped the ante each week. 

Psych was also incredibly successful in pulling off the comedy-as-parody routine. Many episodes each season would take on a theme that mimicked other shows and movies. For example, the penultimate episode was called "A Nightmare on State Street" and involved Zombies and classic shots from horror movies that scared me silly.

So what about the finale? Did they do it justice? I think so. The creators took the hour as an opportunity to circle back on some eight-year long jokes with surprising guest stars (Val Kilmer!) while giving friends one last glimpse of team Psych in action. In the finale episode, Shawn tries to give Gus one last case as he tries to tell him he is closing down the business to move to San Francisco to be with his lady love, Juliet. In the end the show gave us a satisfying conclusion. Spoiler Alert! Gus moves to San Francisco where they may have to compete with Monk in the consulting biz....and they live happily ever after. Shawn, Juliet, and Gus. One big happy family.

Also, the theme song is pretty awesome.

.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

HIMYM Finale

I watched the first two seasons of How I Met Your Mother, but then had to give it up because it conflicted with too many other shows that were higher on my priority list. But I've stayed aware of the plot developments and have followed the...shall we say, vocal, reactions to the finale. Personally, I thought it sounded like the perfect ending, but that's clearly not the only opinion on the subject. Reporting from the ground (and the eye of the hurricane) is TV Slut guest-poster Priya, who puts it all in perspective. --Maggie Cats

It's not entirely unexpected that following the How I Met Your Mother finale that the internet, as my roommate stated, exploded. Like the LOST finale, people tended to gravitate towards the "we're good with it" to "virulent hatred" sides of the spectrum.

So the question is "was the finale a betrayal or...wait for it...the natural end to a the story Ted has been telling us all along?" For nine years we've been teased with glimpses of this elusive woman: A heel, a yellow umbrella, a classroom. The entire series lurched towards this one fact: that the show would end when Ted found his soulmate.

Of course in the intervening years we got to know 'the gang:' Marshall, Lilly, Barney, and Robin. We knew pretty early on that any of Ted's previous relationships, including the one with Robin were doomed, she was after all 'Aunt' Robin. We believed the premise and the implied promise. The show would end with the mother. We knew how it would all end.

Let's detour for a moment. For me this show was about more than just that final one hour we got this Monday. I told another one of my roommates that for nine years once a week I've had 20 minutes of joy. A show that made me laugh and surprised me with songs (Nothing Suit's me Like a Suit!) and slap bets; Crazy-Hot Scales, and Marshmallow adorableness; DOWISATREPLA, Cockamouse, and Challenge Accepted!

Granted it wasn't a perfect show--its terrible lack of main character diversity and that horrible Arcadian storyline--but I loved each character as they transitioned from point to point in their lives.

So when the credits rolled on the finale on Monday I was satisfied.True the storytelling for this season could have gone differently. I wish that Robin and Barney's wedding which lasted the whole season, had not resulted in us seeing their three years marriage over in a blink of an eye. But I think the finale highlighted what made this show important.

The gang. The big moments.

The idea that life is messy and that while one day matters and can go on forever, we might not always be in each other's lives as we change and grow.

Don't get me wrong, I think the fact that Ted finally meets Tracy (the mother) only to lose her to illness after seven years is tragic and maybe emotionally manipulative, but as this wonderful piece from the AV club says it wasn't the mother in How I Met Your Mother that mattered it was the How. (Also read: Slate on HIMYM)

So I was ok that Barney, despite trying for three years, really only changed with unexpected fatherhood, and that Marshall and Lilly dealt with life's trials through continued domesticity.

I have ALL THE FEELS.

But this story is about the mother right? And the LOST passengers were never in purgatory. In both cases we were never really lied to.

In the final moments of the finale, Ted's kids point out to their father that it's Robin who he still loves, and can still have. And I'll take a moment to acknowledge that after almost a decade of a revolving-door Ted-Robin relationship that finally ended with him letting her go just episodes ago; to have them end up together nearly twenty-five years later is frustrating for some. But after twenty-five years, after Robin lived her dream of traveling, and Ted had his kids -- the two reasons why they couldn't make it work--it's nice that they had a chance to try and be happy again.

So six years after losing Tracy, Ted steals a blue french horn and with deliberate symmetry, reminiscent of John Cusack's boom box, holds it up for Robin to see. It's a big moment.

It was romantic...-ish. I mean, at the end of the day, it's still a big blue french horn, right?

Let's close with this: In thinking about the end we can choose option "A:"

Lilly: "So what is this all just over now?"

Robin: "It doesn't have to be a sad thing."

Or Option "B:"

Lilly: "Oh god this is too real, Marshall's next."

Whatever the final decision, "Let's Go to the Mall, Today!

 



Friday, March 28, 2014

Strictly Melodrama

So, a while ago, I wrote a post about The Paradise, in which I referenced Mr. Selfridge and stated that I really didn't like Selfridge all that much. Well, I do have a couple main qualms with the show, but the first SERIES (because it's British and they call it a SERIES) recently re-aired on PBS at like 3 a.m. and it ended up on my DVR and I decided to give it another go. I ended up actually... liking it. Okay, it's a pretty typical melodrama with touches of bodice ripping, but who doesn't want to listen to me yell, "Giiirrl! Giirrrlll! Ohhhh, giiiirrrrl he is a dawwwgggg, girl!" at my TV? AS I SUSPECTED.

Downton Abbey what?

Since Downton Abbey has completely jumped the rails, I have been seeking my costumed aggression elsewhere. However, I know I am putting off the inevitable, because like an unhealthy relationship, I'm sure I'll eventually be going right back to DA so it can let me down again. Then my friends will be all like, "Girl, why you going back to that? You know it's just gonna let you down" and I'll be like, "I knooowww. But I was wondering what happened and I thought maybe it would be better this time." And then my friends would be all



Since I need my dose of people sobbing in corsets, I have decided to give Mr. Selfridge another shot. Like Downton Abbey, Mr. Selfridge is an ensemble show. The protagonist is Harry Selfridge, the Brash American Who Defies English Stuffiness.



The drama is based on the real-life Selfridge & Co, and which opened on March 15, 1909. So there are big hats. And these newfangled automobiles. 

The show is based off the book Shopping, Seduction and & Mr Selfridge, by Lindy Woodhead, available at Barnes & Noble, Amazon and other fine retailers. Although I disagree with this book's tagline, "If you lived at Downton Abbey, you shopped at Selfridge's." Upon my word, ladies do not do their own shopping. That's servants' work. Heavens!

Jeremy Piven leads the cast as Harry Gordon Selfridge, the Chicago businessman who comes to London to open a department store in direct competition to the storied Harrod's. 


And I'm here to organize the River City Boys' Band.

Harry's brash style rubs the British press and many potential well-heeled investors the wrong way, and quite honestly, it's kind of easy to see why. I mentioned before I didn't like this show at first, and that's because I didn't really care for Jeremy Piven in the first three or four episodes. I'm kind of used to him at this point, but the show has done such a good job of creating an interesting ensemble piece that they've created a situation where the supporting cast is more interesting than the main lead. I don't know if this comes down to writing, directing, or personal taste, but I can't really say I am a fan of Piven's take on the role. I understand that his character is supposed to be the consummate salesman, but in every scene, and in every situation -- including many that are emotionally taxing -- he delivers every line in the same tone of voice while sporting the same shit-eating grin.


This is my concerned face. And my excited face. And my thinking face. And also my concerned face.

I just feel like an actor of Piven's caliber would be able to do more with this role than what I have been seeing thus far in the production, and I'd like to see Piven bring more dimensions and nuances to his character. I don't think he's miscast in the role at all, but I feel like he is trying too hard all of the time to put on a show and if that's deliberate it's coming across to me more as scenery-chewing than ironic emosadz.  I haven't read the book yet (but I made it Goodreads official by adding it to my to-reads) so I don't know if Harry Selfridge was as much of an ass to everyone in real life as he is portrayed to be on the show, but the production has created a lead role that isn't terribly likable or sympathetic. Don Draper he ain't.


Early character sketch.

Fortunately for us, the writers have provided us with a really fun and interesting supporting cast featuring characters whom we can root for and throw rotten produce at. The most likable and interesting character is our prosh ingenue, Agnes Towler. Agnes is a working-class gal trying to make a life for herself and her brother, since their mum died and their dad is a no-good drunkard. 



In the pilot, Agnes had a job at a swank store in London, until she was fired because someone named Harry Selfridge came into the store and encouraged her to try on a pair of gloves. Harry gives Agnes a chance to get hired at Selfridge's, if only his store was actually open. Harry is finally able to procure backing from Lady Locksley, and Agnes is one of his first hires. She starts off working at the accessories counter with Kitty and Doris, who develop plot lines and characterizations in their own right throughout the course of the first SERIES. 

Thrice the brinded cat hath mew'd.

Agnes also has a romance (with a small r) with the Romantic (with a large R) Henri Leclair, ZEE FRENCH ARTEEST who Harry hires to create window displays for the store. This puts a damper on her budding romance (with a small r) with Victor Coleano, who works at the Palm Court restaurant in Selfridge's and has a thing with Agnes until his head is turned by Lady Locksley, who is kind of a ho. Lady Locksley's husband is apparently 100 years old and so she spends her time being a suffragette, backing odd business deals, and being the moral ruin of earnest young men. Just some full on Alexis Carrington realness. 

Yes, but dahhhling. It's good to be a gangsta.

Oh, and did I mention the part about Harry being kind of a philandering slut? Harry is a philandering manwhore. He is constantly cheating on his wife, the long-suffering Rose (exquisitely played by my girl Frances O'Connor). Harry's most significant affair is with Ellen Love, a London burlesque star (and Dr. Who companion reject) WHO WANTS TO BE A REAL ACTRESS SOMEDAY. 

Just no, girl. Just no. 


That's not to say that MRS. Selfridge isn't getting some somethin somethin. She meets an ARTIST FELLOW who paints her portraits and they fall in the lovez. Then Rose tells him she can't see him anymore. Then he starts paying attention to 17-year-old daughter Rosalee and all manner of unmentionable substances hit various electric cooling devices.

Hands off the artist, beyotch. 

So, despite the leading man's drawbacks, there are still a lot of plot lines that the show has going for it. The other major qualm I have with the production is the historical stunt casting. During almost every episode, the store is visited by some notable and inoffensive historical figure in actor form. During the first few episodes, it felt like the show was relying too much on the historical figures to keep the show interesting because none of the non-Harry plot lines had been fully developed. A couple of the later celebrities were more interesting, like polar explorer Ernest Shackleton and ballerina Anna Pavlova, but even they outshone the lead -- and Anna Pavlova didn't even speak any English. I'm a huge geek about Anna Pavlova. I read a biography about her in sixth grade for my English class and after we finished our book reports I checked it out about five more times afterward. Whenever I got to the part where she died of pleurisy I cried buckets. I also looked up pleurisy in the encyclopedia and learned its path of infection. There is nothing wrong with me. Not a damn thing. So I enjoyed seeing a couple of the historical figures, but most of the rest of the guests were mostly filler for me. But I am surprised Harry didn't try to get into her knickers. Or I guess it would be her tutu.


Pro tip: Say: "я не гаварю по-англаийски" when creepy guys approach you on the street. 

One final quibble is about the casting. Every actress on this show in a "serious" part (with the possible exception of Rosalee) is a brunette, and at first all the female characters look the same. I find this brunettist. Or anti-blonde. Anyway, most of the blonde or redheaded actresses are relegated to bit parts and, as a blonde, I find this to be a trigger warning about dumb blonde jokes. That is all.

Aren't sold yet???!! But wait! There's more! For only $19.95 you can watch the new SERIES of Mr. Selfridge on PBS starting March 30. Actually, it's free and everyone gets PBS. You get a PBS! And you get a PBS. AND YOU GET A PBS.

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

We Used to be Friends

After years of waiting and waiting (and waiting)...the Veronica Mars movie is finally here! There was no doubt this was a movie made for the fans, both literally and figuratively, since most of us ponied up the money through Kickstarter to get the thing made.

But was it worth the wait? In this post, TV Sluts past, present (and future?) comment on the film and discuss whether it met our expectations.

Oh, and it probably goes without saying...but spoilers ahead!

First up: Clovis!
The good – I love these characters and loved seeing them again. I loved the ending. Even though we knew from the first moment we started watching that there was no way in hell that Veronica was ever going to go back to New York and be a lawyer, it was still gratifying to see her (spoiler alert) taking over that Mars Investigations chair in the last shot. Also? More Mac. Always more Mac. I would watch a tech-heavy Mac spin off where she fights cyber-crime.

The bad – I wanted the movie to look as noir-y as the show did and it never quite managed it. All the saturated color and shadows of the show kind of got sunshine’d out in the movie. Also, the limitations that the movie was working off did have an impact – scenes that should have been rewritten clearly couldn’t be because there wasn’t time to do it; characters had to written flatly in case an actor couldn’t make the shooting schedule. (Though the fact that Rob Thomas and Co. pulled off everything they did that quickly is pretty amazing.) 
My big beef though was that never once did I ever believe Logan may have actually killed Carrie. In the show, Logan is written to be ambiguous about his actions – we believe that he can be underhanded or murderous. I would have liked there to be a bit more doubt about Logan’s guilt or innocence, and as such there’s no good tension there at all between Logan and Veronica. 
That said, I did enjoy the movie a lot although watching Veronica Mars was similar to watching Serenity in that they’re both total nostalgia bait and reminders that you’re never going to get back what you once had.

The only thing that I really didn’t like was the obscene number of “we used to be friends” lead-ins that all the media articles on the movie used. Come on, feature writers – think fresh.
Next: Sri!
My favorite Veronica Mars character is Eli "Weevil" Navarro, the leader of the local bike club (PCHers). The only thing we knew about his characters from the previews was that he had "gone straight" and gotten married. By the end of the movie, Weevil has survived a gunshot wound and had reclaimed his role as head of the PCHers. Someone commented to me about how depressing it was that he ended up back where he started. But what is a noble villain without the villainy? He's just a noble dude, and god knows Life kicks noble dudes in the teeth. Also, without Weevil, Veronica lacks the necessary underworld contacts/street cred to be a successful PI. Also... leather jacket. Enough said.
...and then, Priya!

The VM movie was like saying hello to an old friend. A two hour treatment of what made the show so great...a girl with an identity crisis unknowingly longing to return to who she was before and realizing that freedom comes from stopping that fight and taking up the mantle of crusader against the powerful. She is an imperfect heroine that doesn't always do the right thing but along with a rich diverse broader cast of characters finds a way to at least try.

Weighing in from Texas, here's Cheryl:
I adored it. It felt like a long episode, albeit a much darker one. Not that Neptune was ever sunshine and roses, but this was a whole new level of messed up. I get the feeling that it was probably the show Rob Thomas wanted to make but, you know, Standards and Practices. The only real complaints I have are how out of the blue Logan joining the Navy felt (not that I object, especially not to that uniform, I just would like to know what led up to that decision) and the path Wallace's life took. Why is he not an engineer? What happened that made him give up on the dream that was so important to him he stepped down from the basketball team? I think a lot of the movie was set up for the book series though, so maybe we'll get the answers there.
And finally, what did I think?
It's so rare for something to meet your expectations. And maybe it's just the excitement and a bit of rose-colored glasses...but honestly? I loved it. I have no complaints. I have no quibbles. I didn't go into the movie "wanting" anything specific to happen, I just walked in and let in unfold. It was Rob Thomas' story and I was beyond happy and content to just be along for the ride. It felt like hanging out with an old friend, where no matter how long you have been away from each other, you just pick up right where you left off. Of course, in this case the old friends happen to be some of the most supremely messed up people ever with major trust issues who wouldn't know a healthy relationship if it walked into the room and dropped its drawers...but still. My opinion might change upon further viewings, but for now? Nothing but love and gratitude that I got to revisit the world of Veronica.  
And let's be real. Vinnie Van Lowe, Cliff, Deputy/Detective Leo, Principal Van Clemmons...and OMG CELESTE KANE?? How could I ask for more? 
Feel free to weigh in with your thoughts in the comments below!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Recapping AHS: Our Long National Nightmare is Over

Yup, it's been forever on this one, everybody. I wish I could say it was entirely because I was too busy to write this, but it's more than that. I'll explain more at the end, but in the meantime how do we start the final episode of the season? With a music video! Starring Stevie Nicks, naturally! Seriously – it happened.  Vaguely because we needed to see a montage about how each of the girls study for their finals the Seven Wonders, but really it just came off looking a lot like an early 90s VH1 hit.

The night before the trials begin, Myrtle has literally prepared a last supper modeled after DaVinci. Mrytle explains that any of the four girls competing could die in the process. “Childhood is over, my girls,” Cordelia tells them. “Kick ass tomorrow.”

The first wonder! Each of the girls must use telekinesis to move a burning candlestick across the table to their hands. Misty goes first and nails it. Queenie, Madison, and Zoe each follow. No elimination round here!

What "light as a feather, stiff as a board" would like like if high schools had sorority hazing rituals.

The second wonder! Mind control! Misty is up first again and makes Queenie smack herself repeatedly. Queenie retaliates by forcing Misty to pull her own hair. Madison gets more personal, however, and compels Kyle to make out with her in front of Zoe. Zoe, however, will cut a bitch and makes Kyle come to her for an extended make out. Madison then forces Kyle to strangle Zoe until Cordelia interrupts the entire test.

The third wonder! Descent into Hell. As Queenie learned last time, getting down isn’t hard, it’s the coming back before dawn that’s tricky. Each of the girls lies on the floor and descends into their own private hell. Queenie is back in the fried chicken shack. She rolls her eyes and makes it back first. Madison follows closely – gasping for breath. “It was horrible,” she cried. “I was stuck on a network musical. It was a live version of the Sound of Music. I wasn’t even the lead! I was Lisle.” Zoe surfaces later, coming out a hell where Kyle didn’t love and kept breaking up with her and oh Jesus really, Zoe? I don’t even want to talk about that. Misty, however, is not shaping up so well – she’s stuck in high school biology dissection class. Misty keeps reanimating her dead frogs until her jerk Bio teacher makes her cut apart a live one. Over and over. Poor Misty is not getting the point, screaming each time she’s forced to kill the frog. It’s getting light out and she’s still not coming back to the land of the living. Cordelia wants to help, but there’s nothing anyone can do but Misty herself. Unfortunately, the time runs out and Misty’s body decays into ashes in Cordelia arms. Which I seriously have problems with, because Misty rocked. Ugh.

Misty, we hardly knew ye...

The fourth wonder! Transmutation. Which basically just means playing tag, but with lots of vanishing. The girls actually start to break into levity, beginning to have fun until Zoe transmutates herself onto the spikes on top of the gates and impales herself where no one can reach her. Bummer. Time for the fifth wonder! Bringing the dead back to life. Queenie attempts to revive Zoe but isn’t able to for some reason. “Guess who isn’t the Supreme,” Madison crows. Cordelia tells Madison that the only way to prove that she can be Supreme is to bring Zoe back to life, proving that she can perform that Wonder. Madison, however, isn’t too keen on bringing in another competitor, especially since Queenie has effectively been eliminated. Madison finds a third way, killing a fly and then bringing it back. Game, set, match. “I’m starting to think Fiona had the right idea,” Madison crows. “Crown me, or kiss my ass.”

That night, Cordelia confesses to Myrtle that she feels she’s failed for allowing the Coven to die out if Madison is the best they can produce. Myrtle, however, sees it differently – Cordelia herself could be the next Supreme. Her own lack of building on her power has been because Fiona has held her back all these years. Game on! Freaky Eyes Cordelia goes into action the next day, lighting fires from a distance, making Queenie dance, levitating a grand piano, and generally making Madison start to sweat. It’s not until she comes back from Hell and still manages to transmute herelf across the house that things get serious though.

On to the sixth wonder! Each of the three witches must magically devine the location of particular items that belonged to former Supremes in the house. Cordelia locates hers within moments. Madison, however, has a much more difficult time. She’s unable to ascertain the location of her item, suggesting several possibilities and never getting a single one right. She throws a temper tantrum. “I’m going back to Hollywood, where things are normal,” she screams.

Like getting paid to make out on camera with the frankenstein'd version of your real-life boyfriend.

As she angrily packs upstairs, a grief-stricken Kyle approaches her and grabs her neck, demanding to know why Madison let Zoe die. Madison cries that she loves Kyle and that she did it for them. Kyle does what he does best and strangles Madison, leaving her body on her bed. But because not even death can stop things from being creepy, Ghost Spauling is on hand to “help” by removing the body for Kyle.

In the greenhouse, Cordelia makes her move toward the final of the Seven Wonders, reanimating Zoe’s dead body. Now fully a Supreme, Cordelia finds her eyes magically restored and she herself now in the full bloom of “glowing, radiant health.” And what to do with her new-found Supremacy? Press conference! After the passage of some time, Cordelia makes the decision to announce the presence of witches to the world and is being interviewed by Cable News. She issues an open call to all potential witches, urging them to come out of the shadows and come study at Miss Robichaux’s.

As the applications begin to pour in, Cordelia tells Myrtle that she wants to restart the Council with Zoe and Queenie as members. Mrytle agrees, but is more concerned about moving forward on a new era, needing to “clear the rot of the past.” By which she means that it is only right that Myrtle, as the one who murdered the past Council, needs to die. “At the start of your glorious reign, the last thing you need is a Watergate,” she tells Cordelia. Cordelia thinks of Myrtle as her true mother and isn’t keen on this whole process, but it’s what has to be done.

Back to the Stake! Myrtle is back where she started, doused in gasoline and about to be put to death for the second time. At least this time it’s done in love? Or something? And she gets to chose her own dress and her own last word. (“BALENCIAGA!”) And with that, Cordelia lights Myrtle aflame and heads back to the Academy.

Before long, there’s a line of goth girls trying to get into the real live Hogwarts. Cordelia officially asks Zoe and Queenie to be her right hands and her Council. The three of them go downstairs to open the doors, but first Cordelia says there’s one more thing she needs to deal with.

In the living room, who should be there but a withered and decaying Fiona. Turns out that vision of her death was planted into the Axeman’s head by Fiona as a rouse to suss out the next Supreme. Obviously, it didn’t go exactly as planned. Either way, Cordelia figures out what happened and can tell that Fiona is in her final moments. Fiona explains that all her life she saw Cordelia as a reminder of her eventual death, though she “loved you plenty” in her own way. It’s actually a testament to how good both these actors are and how good they are at playing apart from each other that this entire scene is ridiculously intense when it’s just two women sitting in a nice living room talking. It’s hard to figure out when exactly Fiona is going to strike and she feels like someone who you just can’t trust asking for a hug. The tension is so well played that when Fiona begs for and end to her own pain from Cordelia, you legitimately don’t know what’s going to happen. Until Fiona, true to her word, slips quietly away, dying in Cordelia’s arms.

Goodnight, horrible princess. And a flight of demons, etc. etc.

And then, Fiona awakes in a simple bed in a country house somewhere, nice but far from the glamorous surroundings we’ve seen her in. The sun is shining and she’s healthy, but she’s confused. The Axeman comes in from fishing and Fiona is repulsed. “Why are you always like this?” He asks her. Every morning, she wakes up and she doesn’t know where she is. It’s been like this for “eternity”, according to the Axeman. As she begins to realize where she is, a place that “reeks of fish and cat piss and knotty pine”, the Axeman tells her he’s in Heaven with her and she’s not going anywhere. Somewhere in the shadows, Papa Legba catches Fiona’s eye and laughs.

And in the academy, the doors are opened and a vast new generation of witches streams in. All wearing black, naturally. “We’ve survived,” Cordelia tells the witches-in-training. “It’s our time to thrive.”

And there we are – the end of American Horror Story: Coven. What with the bevy of talented actresses, the luscious sets, the gorgeous atmosphere provided by filming in New Orleans, it seems like this season had all the makings of an amazing season of television. So why did it feel so...flat? Somehow it became an example of something where the parts were greater than the sum. To borrow a quote from a friend of mine, the season was like a Bloody Mary - a final product that just wasn't good, even though each of the pieces are enjoyable on their own. This season also suffered from a critical sin - it just wasn't scary. Lance Riddick's too-little-too-late turn as Papa Legba brought some welcome chills, but by the time we made it to him the show was too far gone into the overly drawn out plot line of the next Supreme for us to really ever get scared. Given that the first two seasons did such a good job delivering genuine "pillow of fear" moments, it was a serious letdown to lose those here.

I'm not calling American Horror Story's death nell just yet - even strong shows can have weak seasons and given that this show is an anthology, we can't expect every story to be as good as the others - but I will say that the writers need to take a serious look at what they need to accomplish in next season's story and learn how to ensure that spectacle doesn't completely drown out what makes the show interesting to watch. 


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Deadbeat

Hey look, it's another guest post! I know what you're thinking. That I am just getting all my friends to write guest posts on the blog because I am too lazy to write them myself. Well, let me just say that you are absolutely right. This one comes courtesy of my awesome friend, Rosa, who is hilarious and watches almost as much tv as me. Almost. She reviews the new Hulu Original series, Deadbeat, which stars the hilarious Tyler Labine (whom I loved in the short-lived CW series, Reaper). I gotta say, the show sounds fun.

I honestly hadn't seen any of the new Hulu original series until I was given a Klout Perk* to see the premiere episode of Deadbeat before the release of all 10 episodes, on April 9th.

The tagline “Helps ghosts. Can't help himself” is a perfect way to get people intrigued for this show. It's about an unfortunate hot-mess named Kevin Pacalioglu, who happens to be a medium. He's a guy who can't seem to get it together but somehow finds a way to help the spirits of New York in resolving their unfinished business.


Deadbeat is the first collaboration between Hulu and Lionsgate and it involves a smorgasbord of well-respected producers co-creators. Troy Miller (Arrested Development, Flight of the Concords) directed and executive produced the show so I was excited to see how this new comedic series would end up. The playful retro horror trailers (there are three total) were a fun extra and I liked their whisper campaign. When I paired all of this with the fact that this supernatural comedy starred Tyler Labine, I stopped what I was doing to watch.

The first thing I will say about Deadbeat is that Labine has excellent comedic instincts and carries this series as its leading man with ease. It was refreshing to see him in a starring role and not in an ensemble or being the quirky best friend. The rest of the casting seemed just as strong but luckily they focused more on the main character in the pilot rather than trying to introduce too many people.

The episode starts off with some completely unnecessary racial jokes and there are a few sprinkled in throughout. Honestly, that was the biggest hurdle for me to get over. I know they're calling it "fun, edgy and provocative" but ethnic potshots are not fun, edgy or provocative. They're avoidable and unwarranted in a world trying to overcome stereotypes.

Some of the writing was obvious in trying to push for laughs and it was the only reason I never fully connected to Kevin. He is the type of character that is like a dumb puppy. You want to get mad or irritated at him but somehow you can't. It's like he just doesn’t know any better. He's already a stoner, a loser and bit of a simpleton... He doesn't need to make racial jokes as well as trying to get us to laugh. A lot of us respond to that type of underdog and if they ease up in future episodes, Kevin could be a guy we all and up loving. 

The whole episode was a bit campy (in a good way) and it definitely didn't take itself seriously. I think it may be a good show for people who will need to fill in the gap after the upcoming Psych finale, as it holds the same kind of ridiculous over the top scenarios.

There is some serious potential in this series, if they can stop trying to add one-two punch jokes or "funny" drug induced scenarios that come across as trying too hard. In a half-hour show that would be interesting enough on it's own, there is really no time to take away from the plot to try and get a laugh. There were a few times that the writing made me feel like I was watching Fozzy Bear try to push a punchline... (Waka Waka!) Which, let's face it, only works for Fozzy.

I will watch the next episode because I know a few shows that had rocky pilots but smoothed themselves out in to something really fun. I'm hoping that's the case with this series.

Overall, it was entertaining enough for me to be a little curious about the next episode but I'm not sure I'd rush out and get a Hulu Plus subscription just to see it.

If you already have Hulu Plus or a trial subscription to it, you may want to check it out.

See the Deadbeat trailer here: the full series starts April 9 on Hulu.


*For those that don't what Klout or a Klout Perk is, I'll give you the lowdown.

Klout.com is a website and mobile app that uses social media analytics to rank its users according to online social influence via the "Klout Score", which is a numerical value between 1 and 100. This is a great site or those of us who work (or have worked) a great deal with social media or for those who have marketing reasoning behind being online… of course, some of us just love the internet and Klout is cool for that too.

Regardless of why you sign up, you can earn "Klout Perks" based on your location, influential topics or Klout Score. You can be offered discounts, product samples or really fun opportunities. It's kinda neat… you become known for what you love and/or areas you have clout in. Clever naming, right?!

Anywhoo, this site was the reason I got to see the premiere episode of Deadbeat so far in advance, so there are some fun freebies to be had. Feel free to read about the perks here or sign up for Klout and look me up.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Save the Something, Save the Something Something

So, last night, I got caught up on the latest season of Lost Girl, and having affirmed that I am not delusional, and that the show keeps getting sillier at an exponential rate, I turned my attentions to NBC's latest offering, Believe

TICKETS TO ONE DIRECTION ZOMG!!!!!

This show was heavily hyped during the Olympics in February, so I figured I would tune in so at least see what it was all about. After all, it's got pretty good cred, having been executive produced by J.J. Abrams and Alfonso Cuarón. I can see why The Peacock wants to get in on the sci-fi fantasy genre, given the success of shows like Orphan Black and True Blood, and the cult following of Joss Whedon. The show overall has potential, but I felt the pilot was formulaic, predictable, and its "touching" moments bordered on trite. 

The basic premise follows the exploits of River Tam, Bo (if this is an obvious reference to Lost Girl's Chosen One heroine, it was not lost on me). Bo has special abilities that she's unable to control, but the pilot was overly vague about what those abilities are. I guess she's some sort of mix of psychic, empathic, telepathic and and Aqua Man.

Take that, whale! That'll teach you to beat up on helpless plankton!

Bo's real parents are maybe dead, or unknown, or something, so she's been shuttled around to different foster families since their demise. Bo and her guardians are, of course, being hounded and pursued by an Evil Shady Corporate Bad Guy, whose company may have created her/owned her, but anyway, they are after her. The pilot opens with Bo in a car with her latest foster parents. An Evil Secret Agent Lady (she is unnamed, so I'll just call her Mila Jovovich from here on out) runs the car off the road, and then breaks the necks of foster mom and dad in a really unlikely fashion (Mila's secret power is she gets two improbable neck breaks per day) and Bo ends up in the hospital. Bo befriends a young doctor who is experiencing a lot of self-doubt after he was unable to save the life of someone's grandpa. D'awww. Bo helps him rediscover confidence in himself by telling him he will save the life of a singer named Senga. He finds out later that Bo was right and the singer's name was Agnes. Which is Senga if it's backwads. F'real. For effin' real. Doctor Guy notices this when he sees Agnes's get well balloons (which spell her name) in the mirror and it says, "SEGNA" but when I see и, all I see anymore is a vowel so it didn't have quite the same effect.   

Help me, Bastian! The Nothing is destroying Fantasia! 

MEANWHILE, the good guys, whom I have affectionately named The Multicultural A-Team, because I have no idea who they're working for and why, have hatched a plan to spring OUR HERO, Tate, from death row. Tate has been wrongfully convicted of murder and he's about to be executed, when the MAT's leader, Winter, enters his prison cell disguised as a minister. He offers Tate a chance to escape from prison if Tate agrees to help Bo. Tate hems and haws for a reason I'm not really sure about. I mean, he says he was wrongfully convicted of murder and this guy walks in and tells him he'll help him escape and Tate's all like, "Gee, IDK" instead of "Hells yeah!" Anyway, at he last minute, Tate agrees to help Winter rescue Bo, and Tate escapes with the help of Winter's associates, Channing and a couple of other dudes who die later so I don't know their names. 

My acting coach told me to channel McConnaughey.

So, Bo's in the hospital and Winter arranges for Tate to get into the hospital by posing as an accident victim who has really badly applied and eyeshadow bruises, and he finds Bo in her hospital room. It doesn't take much convincing to get Bo to leave with him, but that's when Mila Jovovitch shows up, posing as a nurse. 


Tate starts to wheel Bo out in a wheelchair, but her rescuer and kidnapper soon see through each others' ruses and throw down on each other in the hospital hallway. Bo shoots Mila in the butt with a syringe she randomly found, and that drugs Mila and gives Bo and Tate time to run away. Undaunted, Mila runs through the hospital shooting at them, but not before she puts a silencer on her gun. Hello? Even if the bystanders at the nurse's station can't hear you shoot at them, THEY CAN STILL EFFING SEE YOU. Mila, you are the worst assassin. Mila realizes she is shooting at people and has wobbly drugged person vision, so she randomly finds another syringe full of something else that will undrug her, and then shoots herself in the butt with that, but it's too late. Bo and Tate have escaped. On the bus. The bus. That's their escape plan. Route 10 at 3:15. I also think Tate had no bus fare, but hey, a minor detail. He might have a metro card. 

ANYWAY.

Winter is the former partner of Evil Shady Corporate Bad Guy, and they had some kind of falling out. Car chases in SUVs ensue, and Bo ends up in hiding at this abandoned warehouse/pigeon factory with the MAT. Unfortunately, Mila Jovovitch finds them and she shoots two members of the MAT and makes her way upstairs, where she finds Tate, Winter, Bo, and Channing. They are about to escape, when Bo decides it's a good idea to leave their panic room and go get her stuffed turtle. Which I can kind of understand. I would like to have a stuffed turtle.
I'm NOT Yulia Lipnitskaya! Let me gooooooo!!!

Mila knocks Tate down and is about to shoot at him. This is when Bo remembers that she can summon birds. HOLY SHIT SHE IS GANDALF. 


The pigeons all form this full-on Hitchcockian pigeonado (PIGEONADO!!!!) around Mila and that gives Tate and Bo a chance to escape. The MAT escapes this time, but Evil Shady Corporate Bad Guy will not give up in his quest to capture Bo for his own nefarious purposes.Again, it is unclear about what those actually are.  It's also revealed at the end that Tate is likely Bo's father, which wasn't that difficult to guess. As for Mila, our last glimpse of her is her getting a call from Evil Shady Corporate Bad Guy boss, after she's been outwitted by Tate, Bo and MAT.


You had one job.

All in all, I would give the pilot a C-minus. I guess there's potential here, but Believe hasn't done much to set itself apart from the Female Chosen One genre, and I feel at this point the production is taking itself a little too seriously. I get that they are trying to be inclusive with diverse casting choices, but the main characters are still a white male and a young white female. The non-white characters are ancillary to the white characters, so it's kind of feeling like people of color stunt casting/tokenism. The writing is kind of bleh and relies on some already hackneyed plot points. Again, if NBC wants to attract the Buffy crowd, and entice them to watch Believe instead of Orphan Black, they've got their work cut out for them. It's unclear if Bo is a mutant, alien, superhero, or angel and I feel like she needs to have more agency in the coming episodes, because right now she's as capable of saving humanity as the Wonder Twins.

I want to Believe, but the show has to iron things out more in order to attract its target viewership. 


Believe premiered on March 15, with a special subsequent episode which aired March 16. Its regular time slot is 9 p.m. Sundays on The Peacock.