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Under the Dome 3×12 ‘Incandescence’: Preparing for the end

I was so hoping I wouldn’t have to say good-bye to another show this year, but I’m not all that surprised. I think I’ve hated this show for longer than I’ve loved it, but I am upset to see it go on such a weird though higher note than I thought it would go out on. Last night’s episode finally revealed what made this show great from the beginning. And that is, how messed up and wonderful the characters are. Yeah, they’ve had their periods of being pretty stereotypical, but their panic, their will to survive has been the lynch pin to this series.

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Scream 1×10 ‘Revelations’: “Don’t trust anyone.”

With a very needed dedication to Wes Craven at the beginning of the episode, who sadly passed away this past Sunday, MTV’s Scream concluded its first season last night with a few twists up its sleeve (which some viewers probably saw coming, but hey). Whether or not this final episode is technically good or not, the main aspect people will be talking about is what the writers will decide to do with season 2 and how they’ll make it…you know…good.

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Faking It 2×11 ‘Stripped’ LIES!

It seems like the sneak peek for this season was a clever edit to stir up more drama than there actually is. There are a few scenes that I realized the promo misappropriated to entice us. The main thing being new guy Felix. In fact this whole episode revolved around the assumption that Karma was hooking up with him. Read more »

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The Whispers 1×13 ‘Game Over’: Drill’s BFFL

But Claire’s the best character! C’mon! Just when I thought you were going to settle and give me a semi-exciting season finale, you pull this crap?! This heart-stopping, twisty, and fantastic crap?! I am so mad, and so happy about it!

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Show Me a Hero 1×05-1×06 ‘Parts 5 and 6’: The point of it all

When we think of heroes, we think of figures entirely dedicated to the cause of helping others, and we think of the ways that they helped others. We elevate them above humanity, putting them on this god-like pedestal because, somehow, they managed to transcend what we are. But the fact of the matter is that they haven’t transcended anything. The people that we define as heroes are the same as anybody else, human beings that experience love, hatred, anger, sadness, and all of the other emotions that we do. And when we forget that, we abandon them, holding them up to expectations that are unattainable and tossing them aside when they’re no longer useful. The Fitzgerald quote, “Show me a hero and I’ll show you a tragedy”, works to remind us how heroes are inherently tragic, shedding their own lives in order to dedicate themselves fully to others. And when their work is done, all that’s left is an empty shell. Read more »

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Fear the Walking Dead 1×02 ‘So Close, Yet So Far’: Paranoia and panic

Fear the Walking Dead has a lot going for it to potentially make it fresh and new. The characters are entirely new and aren’t based on anybody from the comics. The location is as far from Atlanta as it could possibly be. The show starts at the very beginning of the epidemic instead of its aftermath. But the more that I think about these strengths, the more I realize that they could potentially be weaknesses as well. Not having any source material to use means needing a writing crew and showrunner that can really handle infusing a typical zombie story with something exciting and new, creating stories with depth and nuance. Read more »

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Hannibal 3×13 ‘The Wrath of the Lamb’: Eternally intertwined

Hannibal has always been a show about relationships and identity.  It’s about how a relationship with another person can warp your identity into something unrecognizable, can unleash a part of you that you never knew existed.  And while that part is foreign and terrifying, maybe it’s beautiful at the same time.  Maybe you feel a little more like you in the end.  But, within the context of relationships and changing identity, the real terror comes from the fear that one person is using the other for their own ends, manipulating them and amputating part of them in order to drain something away for themselves.  Other people can help us grow new parts of ourselves, but what happens if that new part is malignant, infecting the rest of us with something that we don’t want and is actively poisonous? Read more »

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Under the Dome 3×11 ‘Love Is A Battlefield’: Karaoke time with Joe and the Amethyst

I have “Love is a Battlefield” stuck in my head now, thank you very much. Oh and that ending scarred me a little bit, and Marg Helgenberger’s dulcet tones did not help that any. Again, those were the two scenes that seem to have an impact last night, and that makes me kind of upset.

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Scream 1×09 ‘The Dance’: Who stole the Sheriff?

Last week’s episode ended with a suspect being arrested and the police thinking that they caught the killer. Well we viewers know a lot better than that. It’s clear that that arrest is just another red herring, but with the season ending next week, the answers will be revealed soon enough. Or, you know, the writers could be jerks and wait till next season. There’s that too.

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The Whispers 1×12 ‘Traveller In The Dark’: Wait, this wasn’t the finale?

What the hell am I supposed expect next week that will be more intense than the last 10 minutes of this episode? And in all honesty, I don’t think my heart can take much more. It was near beating out of my chest throughout this episode actually, and now I can’t believe that the character I literally despised last week has pretty much all my sympathy this week. What an episode.

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Show Me a Hero 1×03-1×04 ‘Part 3 and 4’: “What are we trying to accomplish?”

There’s a very important scene maybe two-thirds of the way through “Part 3” of Show Me a Hero.  Spallone takes a camera crew into the housing projects and drives around while pictures are taken.  This is after his first set of pictures was shown during a city council meeting to a cascade of fear and rage.  But here we see the cameraman linger over an image of kids walking by and then take a shot of the two kids fighting.  We see kids playing on a playground but see a shot taken of a drug deal.  It’s an explanation of why the citizens of Yonkers are so scared, of why people believe new low-income housing would bring crime and pain.  People create the narratives that work to their advantage.  Racism benefits white people, especially white people in power whose constituents feed off of it.  So creating a narrative that reinforces the belief systems of those constituents works to not only keep those politicians in power, but to solidify the worldview of those exposed to it.  We generally believe the things we see, and the more that we’re exposed to narratives that involve racism, the more racist we become.  We have to shield ourselves against negative and manipulative narratives in order keep from being manipulated.  But if those shields aren’t up, if we aren’t critically analyzing those narratives, then they continue to poison us, blinding us from reality. Read more »

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Fear the Walking Dead 1×01 ‘Pilot’: Beginning of the end

The intrigue behind having a The Walking Dead spinoff comes not simply from its central gimmick that this particular show enters the Walking Dead world at the beginning of the apocalypse.  That entry point is certainly fascinating, as it offers a new lens with which to view the very small world that The Walking Dead inhabits.  But it’s also the fact that this new show, Fear the Walking Dead, is free from the constraints of the comic books.  It doesn’t have to deal with gimmicky characters like The Governor, like Eugene Porter, like the inevitability of Negan, like Michonne (even though she is one of the better comic characters). Read more »

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Hannibal 3×12 ‘The Number of the Beast is 666’: “You owe me awe”

Countless television shows explore the struggle within a person as they fight against their worst impulses.  Breaking Bad was entirely about Walter White trying to assert that his actions were for his family, when he kept leaning closer and closer to his darkest impulses.  Mad Men was about Don Draper trying to find his way in the world, when he continually self-destructed through his womanizing behavior.  The Sopranos was about those closest to Tony Soprano desperately trying to evade dark impulses that were fostered by his presence.  And Hannibal works the same way, with Will Graham trying to push back against his darkest impulses, only to have them unhinged by the manipulation of those around him. Read more »

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Under the Dome 3×10 ‘Legacy’: Throwing all the shade

You trying to get both women at the same time, Barbs?! Eh, I’m just messing with you. You looked like you wanted to puke about a dozen times just from kissing Eva. Your regret is so palpable that even Junior figured you out. And Junior is freaking AWFUL. Like who beats up Joe? Do you hate adorable enthusiasm in a stick figure frame THAT much? I hope someone tries to bring Junior back by hitting him in the head with a shovel. Repeatedly.

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Scream 1×08 ‘Ghosts’: Did they catch the killer?

The countdown continues. With two episodes left on the clock and some major questions answered this week, it’s a wonder to see just what the heck is going to happen in the two final episodes. But first, it’s time to deal with the shocking ending of last week’s episode and to see how Emma is holding up. And of course to see what other red-herrings the writers are going to throw our way.

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Proof 1×08 ‘Tsunami: Part Two’: An almost sad end

We have proof! Patricia is gone, so that means it exists, all of it! And you know what? I was so freaking nervous last week that if we got a full touch of the other side, as in Cat being a believer, it wouldn’t work. The show would go nowhere after that. Well, I’m still not all that sure that much more needs to be done with Cat’s character, but there is room! It could happen! Also, I need Zed to stay in the country, get with Janel who everyone enjoys making sad, and Cat needs her job back. So season 2, you must happen!

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The Whispers 1×11 ‘Homesick’: I smell a red herring

Whatever you think, I don’t care, Minx is not who those kids say she is. Hello, those kids are either terrified of Drill, or love Drill, and they are known for going to great lengths to hide him. Also those kids singled out Minx to begin with, and it’s just too simple! I don’t want simple answers anymore The Whispers, you hear me?!

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Show Me a Hero 1×01-1×02 ‘Part 1 and 2’: “…and I’ll show you a tragedy”

David Simon’s television shows have been met with heaps of critical praise, from his television series Homicide: Life in the Street, The Wire, and Treme, to his television miniseries The Corner and Generation Kill.  There isn’t one of his shows that isn’t a magnificent work of art, and Show Me a Hero is no different.  A soaring, brilliant indictment of the disconnect between politics and the people politicians are supposed to serve, Show Me a Hero doesn’t hold the hand of the audience, instead throwing them into the story.  A show about the glacial pace of politics would be tedious and mind-numbing in anybody else’s hands, but Simon transforms it by including multiple voices and perspectives that lend the political story meaning and poignancy.

To put it simply, you need to watch this show. Read more »

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Hannibal 3×11 ‘…And the Beast From the Sea’: The sacrificial lamb

Hannibal is ending the series with one of the best story arcs it has ever done.  While the first half of the season was fascinating and gruesome, it doesn’t hold a candle to the kind of character study the second half of the season is doing.  The lines between Dolarhyde, Hannibal, and Will continue to blur in a way where it slowly becomes difficult to tell one from the other.  All three of them want control over their lives, and as that control is threatened, all three of them lash out in ways that make sense, given their situations.  Thematically, each episode in this back half of the season has dealt with a new angle on a familiar idea; a serial killer is gearing up to kill again and the FBI has to stop him before he does, but it’s not that simple. Read more »

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Under the Dome 3×09 ‘Plan B’: And we’re back!

I don’t think I have ever mourned a broken ship like I have Jarbie’s (well maybe one), and through the months of harsh words and tonight’s literal torture and fist fight, we finally got Jarbie back with a…kiss? When did this show become Once Upon a Time? Alright I did squeal when he finally broke from the Kinship, but it was still kind of dorky. Also, Barbie better apologize to Indy immediately!

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