Author Archive

Source: The CW

Reign 1×06 ‘Chosen’: Pagans

So: two important, but largely unrelated things happened this episode. We’ve learned more about the woods-pagans (and, scandalously, Bash’s familial relationship with them) who are apparently just an analog for the protestant Huguenots with a heavy dose of the early church’s anti-Druid propaganda, and Francis breaks things off with Mary without breaking the engagement, because […]

Source: FX

American Horror Story 3×07 ‘The Dead’: The quick

It’s pretty ballsy, naming something “The Dead“. It’s like naming your band “Partisan Dairy Motel” and playing indie psych folk that sounds vaguely eastern European about Helen Keller, or for some reason portraying a two-on-one threesome, where the “two” are a reanimated Frankenstein’s monster and a goth zombie and the “one” is a living, super-powerful […]

Source: HBO

Eastbound & Down 4×08 ‘Chapter 29’: Vaya con dios

Kenny Powers is already himself a meta-joke, so I guess it’s okay that he goes out with a meta-joke, surrounded by his children, Lindsay Lohan (in what is undoubtedly the weirdest Mean Girls reference ever) and Alexander Skarsgard, his second wife, black, on a hover-jet-ski, and future-Stevie, cremated on giant pyre, reminiscent of Alexander the […]

Source: ABC

Scandal 3×07 ‘Everything’s Coming up Mellie’: The 90s are over; we lost

That got dark quickly. Mellie’s always been one of the saddest characters on this show, her arcs functioning as much as a master’s course in gender politics and double standards as functional character arcs. But she’s always been a little bit relegated to the background, either as way to provide a human face to Fitz’s […]

Source: The CW

Reign 1×05 ‘A Chill in the Air’: Pagans and other drunks

Is it just me or is Reign getting a little confused? One episode after Lola was being played up as a Bash love interest, the Bash/Mary/Francis triangle is back with a vengeance, and after forgetting about Francis’ prior entanglements since the pilot, we are presented with one of his former flings/girlfriends/whatevers. While the general theme […]

Source: The FX

American Horror Story 3×06 ‘The Axeman Cometh’: Two feet in the grave

Hi, everyone! I’m John, and I’ll be taking over AHS recap duties from the delightful Taragh Catstello, of whom I have no independent knowledge because this is the internet and the internet has destroyed any sense of truly knowing one another, are you new? But I digress. Axe Murderers! John M. works for a legal […]

Source: HBO

Eastbound & Down 4×07 ‘Chapter 28’: Having over all

There aren’t a ton of Christmas stories that can pass off the return of a deadly, carnivorous wolf to a couple of children while a mulleted man in a lime green Lamborghini watches through opera glasses as heartwarming. Then again, very few limited run shows, outside of the UK, will give us a full on […]

Source: ABC

Scandal 3×06 ‘Icarus’: Daedalus

This was a weird episode. Don’t get me wrong, I liked it a lot. There were moments that just killed: Marcus’ rant to James in the interview, Cyrus’ infectious glee with being in a solid, familiar position he knew how to react to, Abby’s smug glee bouncing off Marcus staffers, pretty much every part of […]

Source: The CW

Reign 1×04 ‘Hearts and Minds’: When you have em…

Well, that was certainly a way to get around the problem of Tomas. His heel turn came fast and uncompromising this hour, going from swarthy, seductive man-candy to pretty much twirling his mustache while raising the specter of domestic abuse in a couple seconds. I couldn’t tell whether this was intended to come off as […]

Source: HBO

Eastbound & Down 4×06 ‘Chapter 27’: Closer walks

Damn. Kenny Powers has been genuinely evil and hateable, and he’s been genuinely triumphant and loveable, but I don’t think the two have every come into such close proximity. The whiplash as visceral, the swing from disgust to joyous triumph in the space of a gloriously spat Ken Marino insult hilarious. David Gordon Green has […]

Source: The CW

Reign 1×03 ‘Kisses’: Import duties

So in spite of my (and, apparently, the rest of the internet’s) not-so-silent wish that Reign nut up and decide to run with the level of genuine lunacy it was summoning in its more supernatural segments, Reign decided to come back and hit us with a show that is entirely about pan-European politics to the […]

Source: ABC

Scandal 3×05 ‘More Cattle, Less Bull’: Banality

At what point is Olivia Pope complicit in what is going on around her? Scandal is a remarkably disingenuous show in a lot of ways; the effects of Olivia’s support, or (to put it in a way that makes me feel like a giant turd) what the opportunity costs of her decisions to support various […]

Source: HBO

Eastbound & Down 4×05 ‘Chapter 26’: Man and his symbols

Eastbound & Down can be a difficult show to watch. It’s not that it relies primarily on cringe comedy, although McBride and Hill do excel at a sort of subtler, more referential cringe than is exhibited in somethingĀ  like The Office. Eastbound should have you cringing out of sheer verisimilitude. Kenny Powers and the people […]

Source: The CW

Reign 1×02 ‘Snakes in the Garden’: Into the woods

Reign is already a pretty strict genre mashup, and its sophomore episode throws another on top of the pre-existing melange of teen soap and period political thriller. Bash, the castle ghost, and a trip into what one could easily mistake for the Black Forest of legend pretty much confirm that there’s gonna be a healthy […]

Source: ABC

Scandal 3×04 ‘Say Hello to My Little Friend’: The second sexts

How do you be a woman? Hell if I know. I’m a 5’11”, early 20s (mid 20s) vaguely ethnic (white, but I pass as pretty swarthy) straight dude. Scandal has always been a show with a distinctly female perspective if only through the lens of Olivia Pope, but the issues that are being dealt with […]

Source: HBO

Eastbound & Down 4×04 ‘Chapter 25’: The leader, the lancer, his wife & her lover

It took 4 seasons, but Kenny Powers has an enemy, and appropriately, it’s Ken Marino. Kenny’s had enemies before, for an episode or two at a time (Craig Robinson and Will Ferrell appear at best sporadically), but Guy Young has emerged as such as smoothly unsubtle operator that even Kenny can recognize the exploitation. For […]

Source: CW

Reign 1×01 ‘Pilot’: Dieu et mon droit

I’ll be honest: when I first said I’d take this show on I thought it was about Bloody Mary, and I was like, cool, I just finished Wolf Hall and started Bring up the Bodies. Then I watched a promo and realized it was about Mary, Queen of Scots in the French court and set […]

Source: ABC

Scandal 3×03 ‘Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington’: Out of the light, into the cave

One of the most subversive parts of Scandal‘s universe is really more on the level of privation: there are no enemies or threats to America that aren’t American. Think back, if you will. While Cy and Fitz and Eli and people on that level of “importance” talk about threats to the republic every second of […]

Source: HBO

Eastbound & Down 4×03 ‘Chapter 24’: All the real girls

Eastbound and Danny McBride always walk a tightrope of caricature, one that could at any time tip and spill from cringe and the comedy of dickishness and parody into just cruelty. One of the things that consistently saves them is that the universes Kenny Powers, Bust-Ass, Danny McBride*, and Fred Simmons live in are fully […]

Source: ABC

Scandal 3×02 ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?’: Be there on the next train

Is Scandal, at its heart, about impotency? The White House cast almost certainly is; the balance of the second season’s drama was centered around the Fitz/Mellie/Cyrus triangle, and which of those characters was able to wield the true executive power of the government (always used, of course, on personal problems). Mellie and Cyrus could normally […]