Friday, June 30, 2017

GLOW 1.02

Slouch. Submit.

Sam lures Debbie back to the ring. She wasn't interested in coming but he convinces her to give it a chance. She sits on the sidelines and watches while Sam has Ruth and Melanie act out a skit. He has Ruth play the part of the Homewrecker. He might think it is a good part but it seems to me that he is doing it in part to placate Debbie.

Ruth doesn't like being the villain. She wants people to be liked, not hated. She can't grok that the villains get the best lines, as Sam tells her toward the end of the episode.

None of the characters get backstory spotlights like on Orange Is the New Black but there is a little more revealed about Melanie and Cherry. Melanie drives a limo, which I assume is a paying gig and not just her car but there is no evidence, so far, to back up my assumption.

Cherry once had a threesome, years ago, with Sam and her husband, Keith. She also had a miscarriage a few years ago. Melanie overhears Sam and Cherry talking about it and shares this information with everyone.

So far the group has yet to do more than just practice. I'm starting to wonder if they are going to get to a real match before the end of the season.

It looks like I was wrong about Maron only being in two episodes. Now IMDB has him listed as being in all 10 episodes.

So far I'm liking but not loving this show. I like what I'm seeing but I wish that there were more character moments. I guess the show is growing. Hopefully one day it will be a show that I love. Before that day comes the characters need to become a little more three dimensional.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Taxi 1.06

The Great Line

John proposes to Suzanne, a woman he just met one night at Mario's. They end up driving to Maryland to getting married. The next day he has some regrets (as does she) but in the end they decide to stay married.

There is a running gag with a guy who drinks beer extremely quickly, so quickly that I am sure there must a trick to it but I'm not sure what it is.

Not a great episode. It is mostly John and Alex. There is very little chemistry between them. Suzanne's father is played by Dolph Sweet who would later be known as Chief Kanisky on Gimme a Break!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Teen Titans 2.01

How Long Is Forever

Starfire chases Warp, a villain from the future, through a wormhole. She exits the wormhole 20 years in the future. Everything changed after she entered the wormhole. The other Titans are older and have split up. The implication is that after losing Starfire they drifted apart and have lives separate lives ever since.

This is my favorite part of the episode, seeing how the other Titans aged. Cyborg's power battery no longer functions and he is stuck in Titans Tower. Beast Boy is balding and a side show freak: the one man zoo. Raven just wants to be left alone. Robin has become Nightwing and has a secret lair similar to the Bat Cave, or maybe it is the Bat Cave.

Starfire's return helps to rally the Titans. They encounter and battle Warp, although it is a little murky if this Warp is the same age as the one that the younger Titans encountered at the beginning of the episode. He seems older but how he got there and what he is doing there is unclear.

They defeat Warp. Cyborg is able to quickly modify some of his time traveling technology and create a wormhole to the past. Starfire goes through the wormhole and returns seconds after she left. She tells them about what happened and insists that they all celebrate Blorthog with her, a Tamaranian celebration of friendship.

Not a bad episode, but not a great one either. There was no real character moment that moved me. I don't recall any stories of this sort from the New Teen Titans comic book. If anything it resembled Days of Future, an X-Men story.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Master of None 1.04

Indians on TV

Dev confronts a network executive after he accidentally is sent an e-mail with a racist joke about Indians. It isn't so much the joke that bothers Dev as much as it is the fact that the executive balked at the idea of casting two Indian men on one show.

Danielle Brooks makes an appearance playing Shannon, Dev's agent. I know her from Orange is the New Black, where she plays Taystee. According to IMDB this is her only appearance in this season but she will be back in the second season. It took me a minute to figure out where I knew her from.

This is my favorite episode so far. It did a great job of addressing a serious issue and mixing in some humor, Loved the little incidental humor, especially Asush earnestly working out in the background while Dev and Ravi were trying to decide what to do next.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Casual 3.04

The Sprout

Alex finds out that Emmy is pregnant and wonders if he's the one who made it happen. In between dealing with AirBnB guests, whose food he keeps eating, he invites Emmy over. She has moved on but still comes over to visit him. The sprout is how she refers to the baby inside her.

Val ignores Leon's messages for the most part. She starts taking a creative writing class. She gets some new clothes. She has sex one of her classmates, who is much younger than her. It doesn't seem like she feels like she is making progress.

Laura doesn't have much luck getting signatures. She hangs with one of the guys from the store where she tries to get signature. Everything goes great until she gets caught trying to steal something from his house. I had a feeling she was going to get caught. I was really hoping she wouldn't do it but I also wasn't surprised when she did try to steal.

The funniest moments by far were Alex' interactions with the AirBnB guests.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Wonder Woman (2017)

Princess Diana, daughter of Queen Hippolyta, lives on the island of Themyscira until one day in 1917 an American, piloting a small plane, crashes into the sea just off the coast of the island. Diana saves him but he is soon followed by other soldiers who want to either capture or kill him. Diana and her sisters fight back and kill the enemy soldiers. A number of the Amazons are killed in the battle even though they are victorious in the end.

Diana, against her mother's wishes, leaves Themyscira with Steve Trevor, the man she saved. They travel to London where Steve reports to his superiors on what the Germans have planned. Steve plans a raid to locate and destroy the a stockpile of poisonous gas that Germans are planning to use in the war. Diana insists on going along with him. She is convinced that the war is caused by Ares, the god of War, and that once she kills Ares the war will end.

After gathering a few people to help them, Diana and Steve travel to Belgium and locate the stockpile and destroy it, but not without suffering some personal consequences.

This movie both lived up to my expectations and did not do so. I liked the characters and the character interactions, especially between Diana and Steve. I liked the opening act of the movie on Themyscira. I liked the part of the movie that was set in London and the culture clash that occurred as Diana experienced things for the first time. I liked the battle scenes in Belgium, how they were filmed, portrayed, and how they played out. I wasn't so crazy about the big bad guy and the confrontation with him.

Ares did not seem like a god of war to me. The way he disappeared and reappeared reminded me of something that Loki or a trickster god would do. The fight with Ares relied much too much on the use of CGI. The best fight scenes in the movie were the ones where Wonder Woman took on the Germans, charging their trenches, fighting hand-to-hand, and taking down the sniper in the church tower.

All in all the movie was less than perfect but it was much better than any other DC Comics movies I have seen in quite some time. It has flaws but I think it was worth my time.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Star Wars: Clone Wars 3.05


Senator Padme Amidala pays an official visit to the planet Mandalor and Duchess Satine. Senator Amidala helps Duchess Satine investigate the source of an epidemic that has the hospitals overloaded with sick children.

Not an awful episode but not a very engaging one either. There was a little too much talk of trade negotiations, not enough action, and nothing in the way of character moments.

UnREAL 2.07


Rachel has lots of drama, Quinn has a little. Mostly this one is about Rachel.

Rachel gets ambushed by Adam late at night, when she is in bed with Coleman, who has just asked her to be his date at his cousin's wedding on Martha's Vineyard. Adam and Rachel had a fling during the previous season. He was invited back by Quinn, who wants to break up Coleman and Rachel. She also wants Adam to make a guest appearance on the current season of Everlasting, which he does.

Rachel doesn't want to have anything to do with Adam. He backs her against a wall at one point and gets her to start making out with him but it doesn't get very far. He is trying to be nice but it is too late, at least in Rachel's mind it is, for the two of them. Quinn also attacks the Coleman and Rachel issue from another direction, she sweet talks John Booth into trying to lure him off the show with another project. Quinn just wants Coleman off the show. She wants Rachel to stay. Rachel finds out about this when she walks in on Booth and Coleman chatting about possible projects. This sows a bit of distrust between Rachel and Coleman.

Darius has to pick one of the four remaining contestants for a date. He goes with Chantal. The date is kind of fake and ends in a tragic-comic way. The boat they are on isn't a gondola, like it is supposed to be but actually a prettied up row boat, which isn't even on a body of water. The date ends with Chantal emptying her dead fiance's ashes from the locket around her neck and the ashes blowing into Darius' face.

Quinn is having a great time with John. She is very happy. He gives her a ride to the set of Everlasting. They make out in his car before getting out. Later they go back to his place. It is while they are there that they find about what happened after Darius and Chantal's date.

Romeo, Darius' cousin and manager, came back. Darius didn't like how the date with Chantal ended. They run into Tiffany and Hot Rachel (Yael) while Darius is complaining about the date. Someone, I don't recall whom, suggests that the four of them should party together. They take one of the show's cars without permission. Rachel and Coleman decide to call the cops and report the car as stolen. They then follow the stolen car they with a camera crew.

They get there in time to see Darius, Romeo, Yael, and Tiffany pulled over. When Darius can't provide ID to prove who he is the cops put him in handcuffs. Rachel and Coleman are filming the stop. Rachel gets nervous and runs out to try and calm the situation down, at least one of the cops at this point has a gun out. The cop gets distracted by Rachel, turns back around, sees Romeo coming towards him and shoots him.

At the very beginning of the episode there was a disclaimer about gun violence. I wasn't sure what that was foreshadowing. I thought that maybe Jeremy was going to come back to the set with a gun. Once I saw Darius, Romeo, Tiffany, and Hot Rachel take the car I had a bad feeling I knew how that would wind up. The truly awful part about it is that instead of telling the cops who was in the car when they called it in Coleman and Rachel just reported it as stolen.

Romeo's status is unclear. Is he dead? At first I thought he was shot in the head but when they showed the replay it looked like he was shot in the midsection. They took him to the hospital, not the morgue but there have not been any updates on the status of his condition.

Jay gives Rachel a very hard time about what happened when he finds out how everything played out. Rachel is already blaming herself for the shooting when Jay confronts her. She goes back to her trailer and curls up in a ball. Adam comes back and tries to talk to her but she doesn't want him around. She winds up calling her mother who comes and takes her to a mental institution and has her take some medication to (presumably) take the edge off her dark mood.

Quinn sees Rachel leaving the set with her mother and doesn't look happy about it at all. The only thing Quinn is happy about is that Gary the network executive has fired Coleman and put her back in charge.

Finally, before the final scene with Rachel taking the medication, Hot Rachel meets with Jeremy. She acts distraught, at first about what has just happened. She asks Jeremy to tell her everything he knows. She surreptitiously start recording their conversation. I'm starting to think that Yael is more than just a contestant on the show. I think she might be an investigative reporter who wants to do an expose about Everlasting.

This was a very powerful episode. It was clear from the last episode that Rachel was already spiraling downward. She continued in that downward trajectory and more or less crashed. Never say never but I don't see how things can get any lower for her from here.

Friday, June 23, 2017

GLOW 1.01


Ruth struggles to find work in Hollywood. She doesn't like the roles for which she auditions and never gets cast. One day a casting agent refers her to a call for unusual women. It turns out to be an open casting call for women wrestlers to join a new show called the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (GLOW). She doesn't exactly look the part but she certainly has the spirit.

Ruth is interested enough to stick around but gets cut from the program before training really gets started. She goes home, watches a bunch of wrestling, and comes back the next day in costume. She doesn't make much of a splash until Debbie, her best friend, shows up and the two start fighting. Ruth is very gung ho when she shows up in uniform but gets very squeamish when Debbie shows up and wants to fight. Debbie is enraged because Ruth slept with her husband. For a moment I wondered if this was some sort of set up that that Ruth and Debbie engineered but it was only a passing thought. Sam Sylvia, the guy organizing GLOW, gets very into the fight and starts fantasizing about a real match between Ruth and Debbie in front of an audience.

I'm not sure I would have watched GLOW on the first day it was available if it weren't for the fact that (a) Marc Maron (Sam Sylvia) is in it and (b) he's been talking about it a lot on WTF, his podcast. He is in this episode and plays a fairly significant role. According to IMDB and what I recall him saying on the show he is only in one more episode.

Alison Brie (Ruth) looks very different in this than she did in either Mad Men or Community. This episode was very much focused on Ruth.

There are other characters with speaking parts but none of them get their own spotlight. On the whole I was pleased with what I saw but it didn't grab me in the same way that some shows have with the first episode. I don't love it but I want to see more.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Taxi 1.05

Come as You Aren't

Elaine throws a party for people from the art gallery where she works part-time as a receptionist. She doesn't want anyone to know that she is also a taxi driver. Alex balks at the idea of coming to the party and pretending that he isn't a taxi driver but he does so anyway. By the end of the episode the tables have turned and Elaine outs herself as a cab driver and Alex wants to conceal his true profession.

I really liked this episode. I think it is mostly because of the way the tables turn. The other characters also appear in this one but it is a very Elaine and Alex-centric episode.

Master of None 1.03

Hot Ticket

Dev goes on a date with someone he barely knows. At first he thinks that she won't show. When she does he's excited until he finds out what she is really like. The episode ends with him hanging out with Rachel, the gal he was in bed with at the beginning of 1.01. That goes well but ends on a bittersweet note.

I'm still not a big fan of Dev. Maybe he is supposed to be the lovable loser. I did like the turn the show took in the second half. That turn has me interested in watching more, in hopes for more in that vein.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Young Justice 1.08


The team splits up to take some time off. Dick plays basketball with Bruce. Wally visits with family including Jay Garrick and Barry Allen.

Artemis visits her mother who reveals that she has just been awarded a scholarship to Gotham Academy. Artemis isn't interested in attending the prestigious school but relents when her mother turns on the waterworks.

Superboy and Miss Martian stay back at the cave. Their relationship takes a tiny step forward when M'Gann tries making a meal for them, using her telekinetic ability. Instead of dinner she accidentally makes a mess, all over Superboy.

After having a chat with Batman, Aqualad returns to Atlantis. He is considering quitting the team and resuming his studies in Atlantis. Tula, his former girlfriend, has moved on during his absence. She is now dating Garth, another classmate from the Academy of Magic. This doesn't sit well with Kaldur'ahm but he doesn't have much time to consider the loss.

Black Manta attacks Atlantis with an army of men. They are there to take the giant frozen starfish seen earlier in the episode. Kaldur'ahm and Garth team up, despite their rival affections for Tula, to repel the invaders. Once it becomes clear to Black Manta that he won't be able to get away with the giant starfish, he blows it up.

After the battle Aqualad decides that there is more for him in the surface world. He returns to Happy Harbor and rejoins the team, taking with him the only surviving piece of the giant starfish.

This episode has all sorts of little things going on in it. Some, possibly most, of them will show up again. Most of these things help to fill in the stories behind the characters that make up the team. This is a good episode but I don't think I enjoyed it as much as the last three.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Star Trek: The Next Generation 3.10

The Defector

While traveling near the Neutral Zone the Enterprise is hailed by a Romulan warship. Aboard the ship is a single Romulan. He claims to be a low level logistics officer with information about a Romulan base that is under construction within the Neutral Zone. He has no evidence. He sets his ship to self-destruct before he is taken aboard the Enterprise. It seems that he must be lying. He must be a spy.

Eventually the defector reveals himself to be Admiral Jarok. He claims he is doing this because he wants peace between the Romulan Empire and the Federation for the sake of his children. Picard is moved enough to enter the Neural Zone and investigate the planet where the base is being constructed. They get there only to discover that there is no base. Jarok truly believed that there was a base but he was being tested by his superiors.

The Enterprise just barely escapes a potentially fatal encounter with a couple of Romulan warships thanks to some help from the Klingons. The Romulan ships were led by Admiral Tomalak who previously appeared in 3.07 (The Enemy) and would make two more appearances on the Next Generation. His only other appearances would be in Star Trek books and comic books.

The crux of this episode is the veracity of Admiral Jarok. Up until the final scenes in the episode the question seems to be is he leading the Enterprise into a trap or is he telling the truth. Other possibilities including the one that turns out to be the case might be true but the way the episode is presented makes it seem as if there are just two possibilities. Jarok is beyond emotional hurt when he discovers that he was fooled and commits suicide.

I found the performance by the actor playing Jarok to be very compelling.

Also worth mentioning is that the episode opens with Data practicing the part of King Henry V from the Shakespearean play of the same name, under the tutelage of Captain Picard. The play is mentioned more than once in subsequent scenes. If I was more familiar with the play then the quotes probably would have carried a little more weight than they did.

Overall this is a better than average episode and well worth watching. It reminded me in part of the a cold war movie. Not so much of any one film in particular but of the genre.

Casual 3.03

The Table

Alex tries pitching to a firm, maybe a venture capital (VC) firm. They act interested but then tell him that they will be in touch. His accountant tells him that he is living beyond his means and suggests that maybe he should sell his house.

Laura goes looking for work, to pay for the tattoo removal fees. When a job getting signatures for a social justice type organization doesn't seem very exciting or (more importantly) remunerative, she tries something else. By the end of the episode, the something else, which pays better, weirds her out and she is back to collecting signatures.

Val asks Leon to hang at her place while she is at work. She has a delivery coming, the titular table. Val deals with her clients and their problems, all of which drive her nuts. Leon misses the delivery people and tries to make it up to Val by making her dinner. Val starts to consider taking a job teaching at UCLA.

All in all not the most uplifting episode but also no where near as dark as the last episode. There is light at the end of the tunnel. There were a number of moments that brought a smile to my face or made me laugh.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Flash 1.23

Fast Enough

Barry has a decision to make. Does he go back in time and save his mother or accept the fact that she is dead and move on? After asking several people what they think he should do he ultimately decides to go back and save her. In order to do so he has to travel faster than he ever has before. Dr. Wells/Thawne helps him to do this by giving him the know how. In return he is going to let Wells/Thawne, the man who killed his mother, leave. That made no sense at all to me. I might have been able to accept it if Barry had said no to helping Wells/Thawne but then he escaped.

Eddie is still bummed over what Wells/Thawne todl him but he gets over feeling sorry for himself after he has a chat with Dr. Stein. He goes back to Iris and apologizes for acting stupid. She accepts and they are an item once again. This happens after Barry has a chat with Iris about the headline that shows her last name changed to West-Allen.

After much pondering, which for the most part felt like a waste of time, Barry agrees to give it a try. He runs super-fast around the particle accelerator. He collides with a molecule that Caitlin inserts into the accelerator. That was part of the plan. He starts to see scenes from the past and jumps into the one where his mother is about to die. He gets there in time to prevent her death but then freezes up and doesn't step in to save her. Instead he waits until the Flash and Reverse Flash are gone. Just before his mother dies he goes to her and reveals who he is and reassures her.

I gotta be honest, there were a lot of moments in this episode that left me scratching my head. This was definitely one of them. I can understand why he froze up and did nothing. What I can't fathom is why Thawne/Wells would give him the knowledge to go back and save his mother. If he saves her wouldn't that have had an impact on Thawne/Wells as well? It made no sense to me for these two men to help one another. They both have reasons for wanting to kill the other.

While Barry is in the past, Thawne/Wells is set free and gets into the time sphere that Cisco and Ronnie built for him. Why are they helping this murderer? This makes no sense! A helmet comes flying out of the time stream which looks just like the one worn by Jay Garrick, the Flash of Earth-2. Thawne/Wells is about to leave when Flash comes leaping out of the time stream and breaks the time sphere. Reverse Flash gets angry and the two start fighting.

It looks like Reverse Flash is going to win when Eddie shows up and shoots himself in the chest. It occurred to me that something like this might happen but I thought that if it did it wouldn't be that blatant. Instead I thought it would be Eddie throwing himself in harm's way to save the Flash and getting killed in the process. When Eddie dies Wells/Thawne, his descendant, vanishes.

That's when the singularity (aka black hole) reappears. It first appeared when Barry collided with the particle thus opening the wormhole which allowed him to travel back in time. It looks like the singularity is going to consume Central City and possibly the Earth. Flash takes off to try and do something to stop it. That's when the episode and the season end.

I'm not a big fan of that sort of cliffhanger. It gives the audience little to nothing about what happens next. I know that these episodes first aired about three years ago and that I could easily look up what happens next or watch the first episode of the next season. I will get around to that eventually but not now and probably not for a few months.

This is episode 1.23 or 123. The first meeting of Barry Allen and Jay Garrick was in Flash 123. As mentioned above, a helmet that looks just like the one Jay Garrick wears shows up in this episode but Jay Garrick does not.

In this episode Barry has just 1 minutes and 53 seconds (1:53) to go back in time and save his mother. I looked up Flash 153 and found that it was an issue that the Reverse Flash (aka Eobard Thawne) appeared in. It was his third appearance overall. He had previously appeared in 139 and 147. I have not read these issues but I listened to the three episodes of Tom vs. the Flash in which he covered those issues; links below. The only significance I can find to issue 153 is that it is the issue in which the real name of the Reverse-Flash, aka Professor Zoom, is finally revealed to be Eobard Thawne.

Flash 139: Menace of the Reverse-Flash!
Flash 147: Our Enemy, The Flash!
Flash 153: The Mightiest Punch!

On the whole this was a decent episode. It wasn't my favorite. There were a few too many unanswered questions and too much confused reasoning. I didn't even get into Cisco's conversation with Wells/Thawne or Caitlin and Ronnie's marriage (Dr. Stein is a rabbi?) which introduced things that I don't want to consider or contemplate at this point. Honestly I think it might have been better if this was the first episode of the 2nd season or the next episode was the last one of this season.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Casual 3.02

Things to Do in Burbank When You're Dead

Alex and Val wander around Burbank the night after their mother's memorial service for their father. They visit places from their childhood, including a doughnut shop, a high school, and the house where they grew up. Val can't stop thinking about the fact that the man she thought of as her father was not her biological father. Eventually they spread their father's ashes in the hills near Alex' house.

The next day Alex sneaks into their mother's home to retrieve his shoes. She catches him. He admits to what they did, take the ashes. She drops another bombshell, Val has another half-brother.

Overall a good episode but definitely not an upbeat one. I'm ready for some humor.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Young Justice 1.07


The team travels to Salem, MA to look for Kent Nelson. The 106-year-old man used to be Dr. Fate, he is still the guardian of the Helmet of Fate but he has gone missing. They find him but they also find a couple villains who had kidnapped Nelson. Abra Kadabra and Klarion want to get their hands on the Helmet of Fate.

In order to save the day Wally dons the Helmet of Fate. Nabu, the ancient sorcerer whose spirit inhabits the Helmet takes over his body and defeats the two villains. Nabu doesn't want to let Wally go, after the villains have been defeated. Kent Nelson cuts a deal with the sorcerer. The heroes return to Happy Harbor victorious. Wally puts the helmet in the trophy room.

A couple interesting omissions in this episode are Robin and uniforms. The Boy Wonder is missing because he off assisting Batman. The team takes off looking for Nelson without putting on their uniforms. It isn't an official mission, maybe that's why they don't bother to "suit up".

There is a fair amount of tension between Artemis and Wally throughout the episode. Wally continues to hit on M'gann. Although she hasn't said it, M'gann probably sees him as more of a brother then a potential lover. He tries to impress her by saying that he believes in magic, as does she. His little deception almost gets the team killed after they enter the tower. Artemis isn't shy about giving Wally grief for his lies and finally gets him to admit that he does not believe in magic. At one point M'gann suggests to Artemis that she and Wally would make a cute couple. Wally also gets some romantic advice but from Kent Nelson.

The insides of the tower in places looked like an M.C. Escher painting with stairways going in all sort of different directions. The tower also seems bigger on the inside than it is on the outside. It was hidden when the heroes arrived but thanks to some quick thinking by Kaldur'ahm they were able to find it and get in.

I really like how magic is used in this episode. It is more than just as a weapon or tool used by both heroes and villains. The concept of magic is also used to help flesh out Wally as he first refuses to accept it and then later as he tries to understand what he has seen.

This is a superior episode. It works on a number of levels. There is the story of the team protecting the Helmet of Fate. There is Wally's struggle to understand and accept magic. There is the continuing evolution of his relationship with Artemis. There is the story of Kent Nelson, who longs to be reunited with his wife who died years ago. It can work as a stand alone episode but it probably works better when seen after watching the previous six episodes.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Master of None 1.02


Dev and his friend Brian don't understand their parents. They commiserate over the fact that they don't understand their parents and that their parents aren't supportive of their successes. They decide to take their parents out to dinner, hoping to get them to tell some stories. The meals starts off somber but by the end of the meal everyone had such a good time that their parents want to do it again the next night.

I liked this episode a lot more than the last one. Having said that I still don't like Dev all that much. He seemed to spend a lot of his time complaining about his parents in this episode. Maybe this is the creators holding a mirror up to society. Maybe I'm supposed to be somewhat critical of him. Maybe he will evolve and become more likable by the end of the season. I think I will continue to watch but I still don't love the show.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Taxi 1.04

Bobby's Acting Career

Bobby gets frantic because he hasn't landed an acting job in almost three years in Manhattan. Alex takes a Great Dane from a passenger who beats his dog.

I think the high point of this episode was supposed to be the moment where Bobby acts like he is angry at Alex for not believing in him. That was about as good as it got and even that wasn't all that good. Bobby is my least favorite character on the show. I rarely if ever get the impression that Jeff Conaway, who plays Bobby, is really bringing it and delivering a credible performance.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Flash 1.22

Rogue Air

This was a very villains heavy episode. I remembered some of them but a few of them I only remembered in part or not at all. I used this blog and IMDB to help jog my memory on some key facts about the villains.

Captain Cold aka Lenard Snart first appeared in 1.04 (Going Rogue), He also appeared in 1.10 (Revenge of the Rogues) and 1.16 (Rogue Time).

Golden Glider aka Lisa Snart, is Lenard's sister. Her only other appearance was in 1.16 (Rogue Time). She got her nick name in this episode but she got her gold gun, which Cisco make for her under duress, after the villains captured him in 1.16.

The Mist aka Kyle Nimbus first and only other appearance was in 1.03 (Things You Can't Outrun). He is similar to the character of the same name from the comic books and like Barry got his powers from the explosion of the STAR Labs particle accelerator.

Rainbow Raider aka Roy G. Bivolo first and only other appearance was in 1.08 (Flash vs. Arrow). In that episode he used his powers to manipulate people and turn the Flash against his friends.

Peek-a-Boo aka Shawna Baez first appeared in 1.12 (Crazy for You). She has the ability to teleport with some limitations on that power.

Weather Wizard aka Mark Mardon first appeared in 1.15 (Out of Time) and also in 1.16 (Rogue Time). He almost destroyed Central City in his first appearance. Barry ran so fast he traveled back in time and then used the knowledge he had to capture Weather Wizard before things escalated to the point they did.

Deathbolt aka Jake Simmons first appeared on an episode of Arrow, 3.19 (Broken Arrow). Cisco appeared on that episode which presumably helps to explain what he is doing in Central City. This is his first appearance on Flash. There was a character of the same name who appeared in All-Star Squadron but I don't think this is supposed to be the same character, just someone with similar powers and personality.


Flash, Joe, and friends figure out that Dr. Wells/Eobard Thawne has been at STAR Labs the whole time. The key, which Thawne talked about at the end of the last episode is active. It is restarting the particle accelerator. Once the particle accelerator is online it will kill the five villains that are currently in containment units down there: the Mist, Rainbow Raider, Peek-a-Boo, Weather Wizard, and Deathbolt. Cisco can't figure out how to prevent the particle accelerator from coming back online but he deduces that they have 36 hours until it is back online.

Barry and Joe scramble for a solution for what to do with the rogues. They can't just leave them there and let them die. Iron Heights Prison is not equipped to handle meta-humans. They decide to move them to the island where Oliver Queen was stranded for 5 years. Apparently there are facilities there to hold the rogues. Joe tries to get support from the police department. The district attorney hears him out and then tells him that he is on his own.

Joe and Iris explore the area beneath the particle accelerator and discover the secret chamber where Eobard was keeping his ancestor, Eddie. He is still very weak but they get him out of there. Iris discovers the wedding ring that Eddie was going to give to her but she does not mention it to him right away. When she does show him the ring Eddie tells her about what what Eobard showed him, that she is going to marry Barry. Iris refuses to accept what Eobard told Eddie but Eddie insists and ends their relationship.

Flash turns to Captain Cold for help transporting the rogues. Captain Cold agrees but only after Flash agrees to destroy all traces of him and criminal evidence against him. Cold gets his sister, Golden Glider, to help him. Cisco rigs up a special truck to transport the criminals. He builds a dampening field into the truck, using some technology that Eobard Thawne left behind in his wheelchair. It works for a while but just before the airplane arrives to take the rogues away it fails.

The rogues break out of the truck and a battle breaks out between Flash and the rogues. Captain Cold and Golden Glider aren't much help to either side in the fight. The rogues almost kill Flash before Captain Cold steps in and zaps Dealthbolt. He then tells the rest of them to beat it. Flash is incapacitated temporarily but Cold doesn't kill him. He figures that like the rogues that he let escape, Barry now owes him one.

The particle accelerator finishes booting up and comes back online. Reverse Flash returns for a battle with the Flash, who has brought a couple friends to help him out: Arrow and Firestorm. It looks like an open and shut case, Reverse Flash is just too fast for them, until Arrow shoots him with an arrow that injects nanites into his body that disable his super speed. The arrow was designed by Ray Palmer. He ends up having to use a few of those arrows before the trio of heroes is finally able to take down the Reverse Flash.


Overall this was an excellent episode and a lot of fun. Some things happened a little too quickly, like the return of the rogues who were in the containment units. Before I could remember who all of them were and what their powers were they were gone.

It looks like Wells/Thawne has been beaten so what comes next? It was a little surprising that the penultimate episode of the season didn't end on a cliffhanger.

Friday, June 2, 2017

UnREAL 2.06


Rachel does her best to cover up what happened (with Jeremy) and move on. At first she wants to report it to the police but Chet talks her out of doing that.

Darius has to pick one of the contestants to go home with for an extended date. He's planning to pick Chantal but Rachel talks him into going home with the controversial candidate, Beth Ann. She is hoping for fireworks or an explosion of some sort when they get to Beth Ann's home in Alabama. At first it doesn't look like things aren't going to go Rachel's way but then Beth Ann tells her a secret: she's pregnant. Rachel talks Beth Ann into coming clean with her parents and Darius.

Beth Ann isn't sure which way to turn but decides to trust Rachel. Just as Beth Ann starts to confess, the guy who got her pregnant shows up. He proposes to Beth Ann, her father pulls a shotgun, for a second there it looked like he might get shot.  Beth Ann's ex eventually backs off but by then the damage was already done and it was all captured on camera. Rachel is ecstatic, Coleman not so much.

Rachel didn't tell Coleman about what Jeremy did. He doesn't know anything about what happened between Rachel and Jeremy until Quinn calls and tells him. She has her own ulterior motives for spilling the beans. It is a little murky what those motives are. There is some indication that she is concerned for Rachel's well being. She confronted Jeremy, grabbed him by the balls (literally), and threatened him verbally. She also seems to be concerned that she is losing control of the show.

Coleman tries to use what influence he has with Rachel to try and get her to listen to him but she doesn't. She is focused on turning the show into a train wreck and ratings darling. Quinn and Chet back her up on this once Rachel and Coleman get back from Alabama.

While most of the show's focus is on the happenings in Alabama, Jay and Madison organize a segment for the latest episode of Everlasting that revolves around the four other contestants. As a group they sit down on camera with Dr. Wagerstein. They are there to discuss why they think that Darius didn't pick them but it quickly gets vicious and becomes even more so after Madison tells Chantal to ask Tiffany about Romeo, Darius cousin and former manager. Tiffany was caught giving Romeo a blowjob a few episodes back.

In the elimination ceremony, Beth Ann is let go. Darius promises to provide financial aide for her child, even though he clearly isn't the father. There was a little bit of drama but it wasn't quite as explosive as in some of the earlier episodes.

Finally, Dr. Wagerstein warns Quinn about brushing off John Booth. It wasn't clear that she did. Still, she gives him a call and suggests that they have dinner. He agrees and she seems much happier once she gets off the phone. While this is happening, Coleman is going down on Rachel in his office. Everything seems to be looking up for the two of them.

In the very last scene, a car pulls up to the set. A man gets out and starts walking up to the set. It is Adam, the suitor from the previous season of Everlasting. He was in 2.01 (War) very briefly and hasn't been seen since. Is this Quinn's doing? Is she the one who got him to come back. Adam and Rachel had a fling in the previous season. His appearance certainly could complicate things between Rachel and Coleman.

Throughout this episode Rachel seems very much on edge. She does not seem emotionally stable. She has been manipulative in the past, especially when she wants the suitor or the contestants to do something they don't want to do. The difference here is that it doesn't seem like an act.

One thing that I really liked about this episode is how they addressed the issue of racial politics. Here was a black man going to visit the family of a white woman, in rural Alabama. Her family is very accepting and happy to have him there. Rachel becomes the wet blanket. She wanted conflict, presumably conflict over race, the fact that Darius. an African American man, is courting a white woman. When she can't get that she pushes another button to try and create tension and hopefully a fight. The issue of race is present but the episode did not become a public service announcement about racial harmony, even though that is kind of happening in the background.

Overall a pretty good episode. I'm interested to see how things play out.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Young Justice 1.06


Artemis joins the team just in time to help them on a mission to recover a weapon known as the Fog. Dr. Serling Roquette, invented the weapon when she was a prisoner of the League of Shadows. Red Arrow, the superhero formerly known as the Speedy rescued Dr. Roquette in the scene before the opening credits. The League of Shadows wants her dead and sends an assassin to get the job done.

Before the team can get around to protecting Dr. Roquette, Kid Flash and Artemis start arguing. They take most opportunities they get to pick on one another. Kid Flash still has a thing for Miss Martian and continues to flirt with her fairly openly and unashamedly. There isn't any flirting between Miss Martian and Superboy. Artemis does make a couple complimentary comments about Superboy's looks.

Distracted by the chatter the team fails to notice when the assassin, Cheshire, sneaks into the school where Dr. Roquette is working. Cheshire is there to kill her but the young heroes manage to prevent that. They move Dr. Roquette to another location and send Superboy and Robin after the super high tech weapon while the rest of them guard the scientist. Cheshire strikes again but this time she brings a couple friends with her. Cheshire almost completes her mission but changes her mind about killing Dr. Roquette after the scientist successfully uploads a virus which kills the Fog.

Cheshire gets away but her cohorts do not. I was not familiar with the two villains assisting Cheshire. One had a giant hook hand and the other seemed a lot like Spider-Man even if he didn't look just like him. I don't think either of them had any lines. Cheshire gets away in the end because Artemis lets her. Artemis is very surprised by the face she sees when Cheshire's mask comes off. Cheshire threatens to reveal something she knows about Artemis to the other heroes, unless Artemis lets her go. What exactly she is holding over Artemis' head isn't exactly clear, but it will be revealed eventually.

There was a character named Cheshire who first appeared in New Teen Titans (1980) Annual 2. I don't recall very much about her but I believe she was supposed to be older that this version of the character.

Artemis gets a warning from Red Arrow, at the end of the episode, not to hurt his friends. He doesn't trust Artemis. It isn't clear if he knows something about her, like Cheshire does, but he suspects she's got something up her sleeve.

In comic books Dr. Roquette was a regular cast member of Superboy (1994) for about 3 years, from 56 - 93. Following her final appearance in that comic book, she has appeared much more sporadically.

I didn't fully understand why Cheshire let Dr. Roquette live. What difference did it make if the virus was uploaded or not? Orders are orders. Who is she to make a decision on the fly to change the plan?

Kid Flash and Artemis bickering was at the heart of the episode. I thought it was amusing how Wally immediately challenged her membership in the team. She wasn't shy about giving him grief either. It was a two-way street. She's exactly what he needs, someone to call him on his braggadocio.

Miss Martian set up a telepathic link between the team members so that they could communicate without having to worry about the bad guys overhearing them. This led to a few funny moments where someone, usually Wally but on at least one occasion Artemis, says something that clearly wasn't meant for everyone to hear and gets called out on it by another member of the team.

I like the developing mystery of Artemis. She clearly has a secret or two that she is keeping to herself. What is it that Cheshire has on her? Why is Red Arrow so suspicious of her? If she isn't Green Arrow's niece then who is she?

Overall this was a very good episode. The introduction of Artemis to the team is clearly a plus. The action and plotting were good, but not phenomenal. It was the character moments that make this a better than average episode.