Sunday, June 30, 2013

True Blood 6.3 "You're No Good" Recap

SPOILERS:

High Points: 

  • There aren't half as many storylines as there were last season, which helps season 6 flow more succinctly.
  • Lafayette had more (but still not hardly enough) screentime being his usual sassy self and letting Sam know that he had his back.
  • Sarah Newlin and Reverend Newlin had a catty and witty war of words. It was like watching two women fight over Manolo Blahniks. Sarah was much more feisty than the last time we saw her in season 2, even checking Rev with "don't bullsh** a bullsh**er. I'm in politics now" 
  • Bill's omnipotent ego led him to go stand out in the sun. Honestly, I'm over Bill. Therefore, it pleased me greatly to see him go up in flames faster than a cheap weave too close to a candle. 
  • Apparently Bill can't take a stake to the heart as a sign that Sookie wants him out of his life. So he busted up into her house without her permission and then told her she was dead to him for not wanting to give him her blood...again. Creepiest. Ex. Ever. However, Sookie found the strength to say, "I'm good with that" Go girl! 
  • It was nice to see Holly and Andy onscreen together again. I've always liked them together and I enjoy how much Andy has grown as a character and refers to his daughters' powers as "hand lasers"
  • Jason and Sookie moments = golden

Low Points: 

  • Eric's time as Area 5 sheriff has obviously clouded his brain into thinking that his phone is invulnerable to being traced. As he toyed with the psyche of the seemingly grief stricken governor over the phone while holding his daughter hostage, Eric's whereabouts, along with that of Pam and Tara, were discovered. 
  • Someone please explain to me why the werewolves are still necessary?! It's like watching a frat party gone oh so wrong. Alcide's "number one bitch" is mentally abusing Emma (who doesn't want to be there anyway) and this week the pack decided to eat some humans against Alcide's orders. I'm pretty sure Alcide is the worst packleader in the history of werewolf fandom. Even T-1000 aka Robert Patrick aka Jackson Herveaux looks like he's over that useless pack.
  • Niall planned to form an army with the fairies before they were mercilessly slaughtered by Warlow, who apparently found a way to enter into the Fae portal. Considering they were too scared to even use their light blasts for protection, I'd say that army would have been about as effective as suspenders on a sheep. It does sound like Warlow is more than just a vampire and it will be interesting to see why Claudine knew who he was...
  • Poor Jason got thrown around so badly and his poor little head is in bad shape.
  • Niall can't sense the difference between Warlow and Nora. Hmmm.
  • It looks as if Bill and Jessica will be feeding on Andy's teen fairy daughters next week in order to acquire the kind of blood to protect them from the "true death"

Friday, June 28, 2013

Come With Me If You Want To Live....Again

Today I learned that the Terminator re-launch is set to take off June 26, 2015. It will reportedly star 65 year old Arnold Schwarzenegger returning as the titular character, but there are other casting rumors bouncing around of Dwayne Johnson as well. I’m assuming this will be in place of two sequels that were originally intended to follow Terminator Salvation (2009). With the release of Terminator Salvation I gave myself a pat on the back for wrapping my head around the chronology of the Terminator universe, which has thus far taken place between 1984 and 2018. Considering Terminator is the only series where I’ve heard scenes referred to as “future flashbacks”, I’d say that’s darn good. Though, in truth, a lot of my time watching TS was spent whispering, “Papa, can you hear me?” as Anton Yelchin’s character Kyle Reese was the teenage, soon-to-be father of Christian Bale’s 34 year old character John Connor in 2018. This is before Reese is sent back in time to 1984 to save Sarah Connor and ensure John’s conception. Whew! Still, Terminator Salvation was a great movie with stunning visual effects and action, a coherent and interesting storyline (considering the time travel), and complex characters that I had looked forward to seeing again.

A pivotal moment in the film comes in the form of John battling a new T-800 model 101 Terminator (a.k.a ‘CGI Arnold in the buff’ circa 1984). However, it appears this age progression of the cyborgs throughout the series was all a part of James Cameron’s master plan since, within the Terminator universe, Terminators of the same "model" share identical characteristics, which allows “multiple Terminators to be portrayed by Schwarzenegger (with varying model iterations accounting for Schwarzenegger's physical aging as the series has progressed).” Well played, Cameron; well played. I guess that’s why Cameron is the director of the two highest-grossing films of all time: Titanic and Avatar.

Nevertheless, unless some serious CGI or X-Men: The Last Stand type digital skin-grafting is used, I fear that, despite model iterations, Schwarzenegger may be looking less like a terminator on the hunt and more like a terminator that’s getting too old for this sh--. But I guess he foreshadowed it best when he said:

I’LL BE BACK


Photo courtesy- http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/7/70/Terminator1984movieposter.jpg

Sunday, June 23, 2013

True Blood 6.2: The Sun Review - Fae Light Balls and A Contortionistic Death

Tonight's 6.2 episode of True Blood entitled, "The Sun" had more high points than I was expecting. Warlow made his way through a portal and, I'm not positive, but by the looks of it I'm pretty sure he may be an original member of ZZ Top...

I absolutely adore the Stackhouse family dynamic. Jason and Sookie moments are golden to me. It's refreshing to see Sookie spending less time with magical men who are always taking her for granted, and more time with her big brother who has consistently demonstrated that he will do anything for her. Sookie said it herself, "I shouldn't be taking walks with handsome strangers. It never ends well." The entrance of their fairy grandfather, Niall, was a wonderfully executed transition. And who isn't hoping that Rutger Hauer brings a Blind Fury type butt whoopin' to Warlow? I can say that it's episodes like this that put me into Werepanther withdrawal. In the books, Jason's storyline of being turned into a werepanther gave him a power and defining presence in the supernatural world. It broke my heart tonight to see him watch Sookie and Niall share in their Fae light balls after Niall reprimanded Jason's lack of preparedness for the coming battle, and informed him that he is in fact NOT a fairy prince; however, I feel that Jason is the most genuine of all the characters on the show, so he still shines without a power or ability.

Honestly, what's the need for the werewolves at this point in the show, besides reminding us that Alcide and his pack love nudity, vampire blood, and threesomes? Emma's grandmother proved that she couldn't keep the little girl safe from being kidnapped by vampires, yet Sam blew one up from the inside and previously killed a Maenad. I think it's safe to say he wins the 'Father of the Year Award'. The attack on Sam and Lafayette by Alcide and his bitch (and I mean that literally...ok and figuratively) to forcefully take Emma back put the nail in the coffin for me on the need to wrap up the werewolf storyline. I would be satisfied with just seeing the cutie patootie that is Emma in her pup form every once in a while.

The sexy Alexander Skarsgard got to showcase his acting range in a scene that depicted more than just the hunky, brooding, Viking sheriff and rather a dorky zoologist in glasses and clothes too small for his large and lovely body. (Does anyone else get as turned on as I do when he raises his voice...?) Viewers also get to see that the humans aren't messing around, and have found significant ways to take vampires down, including deflecting glamouring while, in a comedic twist, Nora, Pam, and Tara are forced to share blood out of a milk carton.Sharing is caring.

The most unnerving part of the episode came in the form of Bill's fatal contortionist act on an unsuspecting vampire blood donor as he drained her of all the blood in her body...through her mouth into his. Is it me or does Bill love savagely contorting women? I'm sure you remember when Bill twisted Lorena's head around during one of their sexcapades. Sure you do; if you're anything like me, it stuck with you for days. I, fortunately, had time to avert my eyes this time but, sheesh, this lady never had a chance. Oh yeah, and he's also clairvoyant now, so there's that.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Amazing Spiderman 2: MJ Watson Recasting

There are some beautiful moments of my childhood that will stay with me forever. For instance, I remember watching the original Star Wars trilogy with my big brother while we ate way too many Tootsie Rolls and I toyed with the notions that Jabba the Hutt could potentially mar my dreams, and I would one day grow up to look like Princess Leia – skimpy prisoner outfit and all. I also remember the days of sitting around reading comic books while drinking Tang and eating Oreos. (Yes, it is a wonder my teeth have yet to fall out). The dynamic illustrations of comic books alone were enough to grab my undivided attention. Two images that stick out in my mind from the Spiderman series, in particular, are the cover from Peter and Mary Jane’s wedding issue and the lifeless body of Gwen Stacy in Spiderman’s arms after being thrown from a building by the Green Goblin. Her death marked a period in the Bronze Age of Comic books which tackled darker storylines and plots revolving around real life issues such as death, drug use, sexual assault, and alcoholism. It also demonstrated the tragic loss of a main character at the hands of a superhero, after it was confirmed that Gwen died of a broken neck due to the simultaneous impact of her fall and Spiderman’s webbing catching her leg. 

Gwen’s death has always stayed with me, and with the film reboot of the Spiderman series in the form of The Amazing Spiderman, it looks as if Gwen Stacy’s fate will be sealed on the big screen in the sequel film. On the heels of Stacy’s death will be the introduction of Mary Jane Watson’s character, originally intended to be played by Shailene Woodley. However, news broke yesterday that Watson scenes for the film were cut and the third film (and possibly fourth) in the series will recast the role. I get chills just thinking about the chemistry of Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone on screen in their Spiderman and Gwen Stacy roles, respectively, enacting that tragic scene. That will definitely be emotionally difficult to watch. 

Only seconds ago I read an update casting Sarah Gadon (Cosmopolis) in a role that may be that of the new Mary Jane but I'm thinking she may come into play in the Black Cat role. To be honest, I was never a fan of the Woodley choice, and apparently neither were a lot of fans who weren't too pleased with the grunge look displayed in many set photos. Maybe I’m just in comic book mode, but my first thought was Katie Cassidy of current Arrow fame, playing the charming redhead. We shall see how it all goes down when The Amazing Spiderman 2 swings into theaters on May 2, 2014!
 
 
Are you disappointed to see Woodley’s departure and excited about the prospect of Sarah Gadon? Are you excited about The Amazing Spiderman 2? Who would you want casted in the Mary Jane Watson role?

Sunday, June 16, 2013

True Blood Season 6 Premiere: A Threesome, 20 Second Screen Times, and Benjamin Buttons

SPOILERS:

"Just when I thought I was out...they pull me back in!"

I had thrown up my hands on True Blood but opted to watch the season premiere tonight with my dad for Father's Day. Nicely played, True Blood. Nicely played. Picking up right where the season 5 finale left off, Billith, resurrected in his birthday suit covered in blood, chases after the mixed posse of Eric, Sookie, Jason, Pam, Tara, Jessica, and Nora. Having wasted her powers shouting at the sky, Sookie is now a glorified night light when times are tough. Jason is the redeeming, comedic genius in a scene that had everyone running around like chickens with their heads cut off randomly stopping at the beach to...clear their heads? Bill practically rips Jessica apart in his summons of her, but she still opts to stay by his side and be his "good guy anchor". However, that task may prove difficult since absolute power corrupts absolutely, and Bill's mood swings now trigger earthquakes, he can catch glasses of blood with his mind, bend spoons...sorry, wrong guy on that last one. Anyway, during a stake-off, Sookie chooses Eric over Bill and stakes Bill through the heart only to find out that he is seemingly invulnerable.

Luna didn't last a full minute onscreen before her Reverend Newlin transformation resulted in her death in front of her daughter and Sam. 

Lafayette wasn't in the episode nearly enough. 

Eric's range of emotions onscreen was hard not to drool over. So hot.

Between Pam and Eric, Pam is the only one who seems to feel that their 100+ years together, which she makes a point to mention often to Tara, means mutual respect, considering she still lets him talk down to her like the perfume "salesman" in the Walmart parking lot. 

Alcide got his "Magic Mike" nudity on...again, but this time had a threesome thrown in the mix spewing puns right in our faces. 

Rutger Hauer made his first appearance as Niall, but we shall see if the writers leave him as a protective fairy grandfather figure to Sookie and Jason, or turn him into Warlow's alter ego or some crap like that.

Andy's four fae babies, delivered last season in a gymnastic display of orgasmic proportions, went from baby to about 4 years old in the span of a night. Considering the elder fairies in the land of Fae still look like Old Navy models, I think the kids are alright. 

Also, True Blood is a show known for naming its episodes after song titles, and Mikky Ekko's song :Who Are You, Really?" has been on repeat on my phone for days. 

Who knows what the next 9 episodes will bring. What did you think of the premiere? Will you be watching this season?


Saturday, June 15, 2013

M. Night Shymalan: What Goes Up Must Come Down

I remember watching a scene from The Sixth Sense in one of my college literature courses because that's just how intense and multidimensional it is. I remember sitting on the edge of my seat during almost all of Unbreakable because the duality of a superhero and intellectual villain onscreen against the backdrop of such a true to life plot and setting transfixed me to the screen; not to mention the exceptional acting of Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson and stunning cinematography. I remember jumping at almost every moment of Signs in the theater, clutching onto the arm of my brother thinking, "I really need to invest in a baseball bat." The aforementioned movies provided supernatural elements that were compelling without being cheesy or superficial. Then there was The Village where I remember saying, "Are you kidding me?!" upon the conclusion. Yep. 2004 became the year I started questioning Shymalan's staying power. As a fan of fairy tale-esque type stories, I gave Lady in the Water a chance and regretted it. Not only did the story move way too slowly, but the acting chops of the star studded cast was underused while Shymalan's painful acting was overused and difficult to watch. Let's just keep it down to Stan Lee style cameos, Shymalan. Ok? I avoided The Happening and read numerous outraged articles and reviews about The Last Airbender on the use of white actors for parts based on various ethnic characters. Shymalan, did you learn nothing from Dragonball Evolution?!

M. Night Shymalan provided the story concept for Devil, which had potential, but only fared a little bit better than The Village. Devil is the first of a trilogy of films Shymalan is looking to make using what could be a masterpiece of a sequel for Unbreakable and a return to impressive film-making for him, as the plot for the untitled third installment. Seriously?

Below is a screenshot of the critical reception of Shymalan's movies since the critically acclaimed Sixth Sense in 1999. The percent column represents Rotten Tomatoes and the fraction column represents Metacritic. As you can see, Shymalan started off strong with the three movies which I consider his best, Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, and Signs. After that, he started on a downward spiral that didn't pick up until this year's After Earth, which can probably be attributed to the star power of Will Smith and "Big Willie Weekend" for helping bring in a marginal increase in viewership. Emphasis on the word "marginal".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M._Night_Shymalan#Critical_reception
  
After Earth has received some pretty scathing reviews despite Smith's star power, and I couldn't seem to find anyone to pay to go watch it with me. I guess that means I'll be Redboxing it in a couple months. People tend to say there's no where to go but up, but I think it's safe to say Shymalan, much like Rose Royce's classic song, "I'm Going Down," needs to hang up his screenplay writing pen or tap into the formula that made The Sixth Sense so excellent.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Scandalicious

A month or so ago I overheard my mother catching up on Scandal episodes as Olivia Pope’s voice roared through the speakers like an Amazon among women asserting, “If you want me, EARN ME!” to her fictional lover, the President of the United States. I dropped my book, threw my hand up, stomped my foot and shouted, “You GO Girl!” In that moment I just knew that my dating life was about to get a dash more sassy and assertive. Then I regretfully remembered that Olivia Pope is a mistress on the show, and the oxymoronic desire to be earned when she’s already tolerated the role of being sidelined and loved in secret threw me. I’ve noticed that the media increasingly portrays a dichotomy of women in which they can be strong, powerful, and fierce in many facets of their lives, but only when juxtapose to a romantic moral confliction or subservience to a male partner’s requirements.
 
I haven’t really kept up with Scandal since season 1, but I have heard and read conversations about how much empowerment a woman in Olivia Pope’s position can truly exhibit when she has and continues opting to sleep with a married political figure that requests and expects her presence at his beck and call. However, from what I saw in season 1 and hear about now, it sounds as if Ms. Pope doesn’t let her relationship with the president affect how she does her job or who she helps. How can this woman who champions and stands up for others not stand up for herself with intolerance for the sloppy seconds of affection from a married man? I know this plot is for entertainment purposes because my news feed is continually exploding with posts of 'Olivia and Fritz' on Thursdays, but I would like to see Olivia Pope hair flip this whole mistress role behind her and keep taking care of business.
 

True Blood Season 6 (Update)

PhotoUpdate 6/11: So it appears that Sookie's love interest in season 6 will not be the sexy Quinn, but rather a fairy named Ben Flynn. Perhaps you tried to get witty with the rhyming, True Blood, but not cool. Not cool at all. In the short story "Gift Wrap" in A Touch of Dead Sookie has a Christmas Eve one night stand of passion with a fairy named Preston. Nothing else really came from it. Chronologically, this story takes place after book 8 in the series but hey, what the heck True Blood? Since everything else plot-wise is out of whack let's throw this random Ben Flynn plot in, too. 

If you keep up with my blog then you know that I’m a huge fan of the Sookie Stackhouse novel series. It’s no surprise then that when the show True Blood started 6 years ago, I was immediately hooked. The series started off keeping close to the plot of its predecessor novels, representing each season, respectively. However, as the seasons have progressed, the show has gone off the tracks and has become a new beast entirely (no pun intended). I understand the need for minor plots, storylines and characters on screen, but too many and it’s overkill. That’s how I feel about True Blood now; somewhere between seasons 4 and 5, for me, the show seems to have lost its raison d’ĂȘtre. 

Therefore, I may be one of the only fans of the HBO series who isn’t that excited about this upcoming season and may not tune in consistently, opting to check out new summer programing and catching the replays. I wasn’t too thrilled with season 5 which had a cluster of fairy hybrid babies, an acrobatic birthing sequence, fire/shadow monsters, multiple personalities of Lafayette (which is always acted to perfection, but was all over the place plot wise) and vampires on what seemed like steroids. Also, if we reference a connection to its respective novel, Definitely Dead, there looks to be no Quinn, no Amelia, no Pelt family revenge and kidnapping (which was one of the pinnacle points of Definitely Dead’s plot), no reason to go to Louisiana, because Hadley is in fairy land, and the queen is already definitely dead, so no crazy violent ball brawls. Jason still isn’t a werepanther (a plot line eliminated which I’m still begrudging), although he did tap into his inner Van Helsing. There does, however, look to be a lot of running from uber-vamp-Bill, now imbued with Lillith’s blood, vampires being hunted by mortals…again, and a whole lot of Alcide shirtless. We’ll see how the shortened season (12 episodes down to 10) goes. You can be sure I will be blogging some feedback as the season progresses.

 

Are you excited about the premiere of True Blood next week? What are you hoping to see or not see?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Game Of Thrones - 'It's a Rough Day for a Red Wedding'

Have you ever seen or witnessed something that gave you chills and goosebumps you couldn’t shake for days? I have:

  • In high school when a boy punched a hardened substance in a beaker, but the beaker shattered and sliced his entire hand open
  • When a vulture gave me the stink eye while standing over its prey
  • When the blonde lost her fingers in House of Wax
  • When all those women died in the car in Quentin Tarantino’s Deathproof
  • When my BFF showed me a Google search of ‘types of spiders’, from across the room
  • And last night when I stumbled upon the infamous “Red Wedding” episode of Game of Thrones

So there I was minding my own business, eating my dessert and watching TV. I had paused the live TV on one of my fave shows “Veep” so Game of Thrones started a few scenes into the episode. I had never seen this show, mind you, but there was a boy controlling wolves and a young girl promising meticulous violence to a man poking fun at the death of her father. Obviously, I was hooked. And then…there was the wedding. Despite never having watched the show, I could feel when something was amiss and then all hell broke loose in the hall, literally. The good guys, starting with a pregnant young woman, were slaughtered, mercilessly, as a barrage of arrows peppered the screen. I couldn’t believe my eyes, and if I, as a new viewer was this taken aback, I can’t imagine the reactions of longtime viewers. It’s safe to say that I can’t get the scene out of my head or get rid of the chills sporadically creeping up my spine, and I will definitely be tuning in next week for the season finale (what more can happen?!) which I can only imagine will leave viewers breathless on the edge of their seats.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

'I Have Come Here to Chew Bubblegum and Pump Gas ...And I'll all out of Bubblegum'

There are fewer things I hate more than going to the gas station. I seem to have a penchant for attracting male characters that missed the memo that I'm a single woman only there to fuel Colt, my car, as quickly as possible. No, I won't drive you to Walmart or buy you a meal at Red Lobster. Read about one of my past experiences here. So you can imagine I do NOT go to gas stations at night if random encounters are occurring during the middle of the day. The freaks come out at night, you know. Today a man who was approaching me made it a point to first advise me to smile, despite the fact he was a strange man - with no car in sight - approaching a lone woman. I had noticed him before and saw his approach that included everywhere but inside to the clerk or to a male customer.

I thought I'd provide some helpful tips, if you're not already using them, for women to stay safe during trips to the gas station. It might seem silly, but the gas station is one stop where people, most often women, are vulnerable.

1. Leave your purse in your car.
2. Keep your keys with you and lock your car whether you're using a debit/credit card or going in to prepay with cash.
3. If you crack your windows, make sure there's not enough space to reach in and grab your belongings.
4. Keep your money hidden as you're walking if you're paying in cash.
5. Keep your back to your car and observe your surroundings, or who may be approaching from the sides, as you're pumping gas.
6. Be prepared to utilize your keys or a kubaton as a possible weapon (nothing that can cause a spark or you'll blow everyone's butt off).

Are you as apprehensive about the gas station as I am? What safety precautions, if any, do you take when you go get gas?


Saturday, June 1, 2013

Kimster in the Kitchen 06/01

In an effort to maximize my budget, I have eliminated fast food and have started taking to the kitchen more. I have always been an avid baker, but I have been trying my hand at entree dishes and recipes. If you've been keeping up with my blog then you know I'm the Sookie Stackhouse series' number 1 fan! I own and have read each novel, which includes The Sookie Stackhouse Companion. Within the companion is a novella, trivia, a map, and a recipe guide of down-home Southern Recipes! Yum.


Between Paula Deen and my Sookie Stackhouse companion, I'm about to be cooking up a storm. My first SSC meal consisted of Stackhouse Smothered Pork Chops, white rice, cornbread, and Wicked Peach Cake for dessert. The pork chops were succulent and the scrumptious cake turned out marvelously, if I do say so myself, and was a hit with my parents. I will definitely be making that again soon. Sorry for the lack of photos for that meal, but as I continue on my foodie journey with you, I'll document my yummy dishes. 



Next on the menu: Antoine's Fried Pickles to snack on and French Market Beignets for breakfast!