August 17th, 2017

Sergio Balleseros

Reign 4x10 + Colony 2x07 + Riverdale 1x06&1x07 Reviewed

A Better Man
Greer whines and acts like a slut. James is a tool. Where there bathhouses in Tudor England? Darnley whines. Mary is an idiot. Elizabeth boffs Gideon. Catherine and Narcisse plot. Charles’ bimbo shrieks and cannot act. People shriek exposition. So much padding and only 6 eps to go. Knox’s wife is not out on the street but Knox took her back sorta. Knox stirs crap up. Things go awry. Mary is awful. James is banished. Catherine and her mancandy plot. Charles shows up to bore. Henri (played by a new actor) shows up. This bored. Since when was Henri fighting Turks?

Best Lines:
“He treats me with the same affection he shows the furniture.”

“How very sad for you.”

“What use is a woman if she cannot reproduce?”

Free Radicals
One has true contempt for the Resistance scum. Katie is a wilful slut as is Bram. They think they’re defiant. Will is billy no mates. Bo is missed. TPTB have cheapened this show beyond measure. The Resistance have estrangement from reality. How can they end the threat of aliens planning human extinction? Maddie and Nolan have issues; he has cold fury. Katie causes issues with her coveting. People are fearful of a world they can no longer understand. There is no sense of assurance. Snyder is worried. Gross Katie lies. Religious nutters are crazy. Poor stupid Bram is sad. There is a bomb and I hate Katie. This was okay.

Best Lines:
“To liberty.”

“We stand on the line between order and chaos.”

“Not now!”

“I’m dealing with idiots.”

“Cast them out.”

“Degrading time signature.”

“It’s a death camp.”

Faster, Pussycats! Kill! Kill!
I don’t care about Jughead’s dubious future or blighted present. Alice stares and attributes blame. Jughead is unloved and unwanted. Everyone in town seems to have shared trauma and bad decisions. There is more crap about Archie’s music. NOBODY CARES!
Archie and Valerie bond. This ep has no unique allure. Polly’s locked up in a nunnery. This was direfully bad and tepid, padded, uneventful and full of idiots. The foundational reality of this show is that Archie both sucks and blows. Josie and the Pussycats have issues. Josie has a stage mom. Veronica whines. Jughead constantly dispenses information nobody cares about. Polly is pregnant. She doesn’t know Jason is dead. Alice is awful with icy specificity. Josie’s dad is awful. Polly breaks out.

Best Line:
“He will somehow blame me.”

In A Lonely Place
Jughead has a crazed hallucination in the style of the original ‘Archie’ comics and their sedimented mythology. Where are social services? Does nobody notice that Jughead is homeless? Archie is awful as is Veronica. Cheryl is disgusting. FP Jones (Skeet Ulrich) is a drunk.

Why does Veronica have a credit card? She’s a spoilt brat. Jughead is arrested. Jughead was in a juvenile delinquent centre back in the day. Jughead ends up beyond desperate. The Blossoms plan to take Polly’s baby. This was desultory. FP yells and Archie’s dad lies. FP can’t resolve conflict. Archie is a conceited mediocrity.

Best Lines:
“Gave me lip.”

“Like an extra in a Wes Craven movie.”

“Those ‘Paradise Lost’ kids went to death row because they wore black and they listened to Metallica. I don’t wanna become a scapegoat.”

“I can’t go back to the attic.”

Secret Empire #8 Reviewed

Where did the Guardians of the Galaxy come from? The Defenders, Doctor Strange and others plot against Hydra. Who is Quasar? Who is Blackout? Did Maria Hill kill someone? Namor shows up with Bucky. There is fighting and narration and Steve has some redemptive distance to go. How will TPTB tie all this up before going into the ‘Legacy’ storyline? I’ve no idea, but am interested to find out. Was Bucky presumed dead or something? Will all this be fixed by time travel? Won’t there be resentment and perennial uncertainty that Steve could turn into a Nazi again? This was okay.

Best Line:
“The only weapon to make Galactus piss himself.”
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Scary Books

Book Reviews: American Heire$$ + 12 80s Teen Novels

American Heire$$: The Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst by Jeffrey Toobin
This true crime novel recounts the bizarre almost blackly comic true story of the abduction of Patricia Hearst and her subsequent participation in crimes committed by her kidnappers. Toobin has definite combative view on Heart’s culpability. He seems to have a personal dislike of her for being rich, privileged, sexually active and for not being emotional in a way he approves of.

The attitude of the author and the others in the book to the sexual violence Hearst alleges she suffered is disturbing. Other disturbing issues aren’t even addressed (Patty’s hygiene, her dramatic weight loss during captivity, her health issues and the bizarre behaviour of her one time fiancée). This was good but one can understand why Hearst didn’t cooperate with it.

Best Lines:
“This is the white unit,”

“Menacing procession.”

“Mood turned consistently apocalyptic.”

“Plotting revenge, in some unspecified way,”

“Soon recognise the folly of relying on a drunken stranger for advice on operational security.”

“Which had, like the counterculture, degenerated into a crime-ravaged ruin.”

“Never tried to persuade them that she still needed saving.”

“They fought on alone, though it was never clear to what end.”

“She possessed the long straight hair and tinted aviator glasses that were the signature of glamorous counterculture figures.”

“This kind of behaviour was less aberrational than it appears today,”

“The putrid disease of bourgeois mentality.”

“Made exactly the enemies he wanted.”

There were 20 ‘Sugar and Spice’ books by Janet Quin Harkin back in the 80s. They centred on a city girl being visited by her country cousin who never left. I read 6 of the books: ‘Two Girls, One Boy’, ‘Trading Places’, ‘The Last Dance’, ‘Dear Cousin’, ‘Nothing In Common’ and ‘Flip Side’. I liked them, horrendous 80s covers and all.

There were 20 of the ‘Roommates’ books by Susan Blake and Alison Blair in the 80s. I read 6 books: ‘All-Nighter’, ‘Crash Course’, ‘Major Changes’, ‘Extra Credit’, ‘Multiple Choice’ and ‘Final Exams’ and liked them, 80s covers and all.
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Pretty Smart

Trailers, Quotes and Stuff

'Quacks’ promo

‘Goodbye Christopher Robin’ promo
WTF is this sappy crap?

‘Strike - The Cuckoo’s Calling’ promo

‘Back’ promo

‘Diana 7 Days’ promo

Caramelised onion flip & dip - okay.

Recall ‘Rags To Riches’?

Anyone see ‘Blame It On Rio’ or ‘The Pit And The Pendulum’ (1990) or the 1985 ‘Once Bitten’? Or ‘The Muppets Take Manhattan’ (1984)?

‘Quacks’ was a terrible, frightful thing.

There is a ‘The Tooth Fairy 2’?!?

There is a novelisation of ‘Warlock’?

Kilgrave is back in ‘Jessica Jones’ season 2. Groan.

What ruin will Luke aka space hobo Moses bring upon the galaxy in ‘The Last Jedi?

I’d try a lavender cocktail.

Was tormented by the smell of a BBQ the other day.

‘The Irish Time’ Quotes:
“Felt like prisoners in their own home.”

“Barmaids in the sky.”

“Presaged a dark future.”

“Processional events.”

“Ritually ignored.”

‘RTE News’ Quote:
“Ireland related issues.”

‘Royal Recipes’ Quotes:
“Patriotic jollity.”

“Did not exactly welcome them.”

‘Hollyoaks’ Quotes:
“I am going to hurt ya!”

“Not like normal people.”

“Sat there laughing at me.”

‘Neighbours’ Quotes:
“Always my fault.”

“No great loss to society.”

‘The Grass Crown’ Quotes:
“I am committing myself to Young Caesar as his tutor because I like him enormously - and I fear for his future.”

“You overbred cretin!”

“I will be heard!”
“Not by me, you won’t!”

Movie Reviews: The Barn + Re-Animator + 5 others

The Barn (2016)
This much hyped 80s style indie movie was a big fat letdown. This film has DVD art that makes it look like an ex-rental VHS. Linnea Quigley of ‘Night Of The Demons’ features and she has aged badly and cannot act. This opens with a prologue in 1959 and the Boogeyman, Hallowed Jack and The Candycorn Scarecrow show up and then go away again.

Then it is 1989 and the expectations raised for this film are not met. Why are there 3 demons in a barn? They unleash brief theatrical violence and ferocity every so often. The ‘actors’ in this film have odd intonation and mumble. This was undemanding. Linnea’s character has open distain for the ‘hero’ and she’s right. The ‘hero’ and his BFF are dedicated to the macho aspects of male identity and are chasing failure.

Linnea has no moral authority and they reflect distain. A white rotary phone is seen. There is rotten acting. Where did TPTB find these ‘actors’? Under a bridge? The ‘hero’ and his ‘friends’ make imbecilic decisions. Meanwhile Dr Rock is a TV host who yells. This was no symbolically resonant. Our ‘hero’ has a deranged sense of self importance and criminal culpability and he isn’t even pitiable. Girls are pleasers and have no agency.

The ‘hero’ looks like a poor man’s Adam Driver. He and idiot friends stumble across the demon infested barn. These 6 idiots with no concept of private property or sense of purpose deserve all they get. The ‘hero’ is attention loving and has unrealistic notions and has rules he lives by. The lip sync seems off. Is it bad ADR?

Too much time is allocated to these tools. Where is the bright light coming from at night? There is death and a hayseed band. There is exposition and bad VFX and gratuitous nudity. There is swearing and I have no idea what is going on or why. There is a ‘twist’ and this was an epically abominable waste of space.

Best Lines:
“Get back in your barrel.”

“Your legacy in this town.”

“How is welcoming evil to my door a form of protection?”

“Does that sign say Deathville?”

“Why would Chris be running down the street?”

“Digging holes and stuff.”

Re-Animator (1985)
This Lovecraft inspired film stars Jeffrey Combs and Barbara Crampton. The rank looking Dr Herbert West (Combs) exists just to irritate those around him. Combs has total commitment to the magnificently relentless stupidity and madness of this film. West goes to work at Miskantonic medical school in Arkham. This okay madness has 2 sequels.

There is bad acting (especially by Crampton) and animal abuse. Why is West let stay in the couple’s house? Combs plays a camp slimy crazy mental bastard with utter conviction. West can raise the dead and has a distinctively crazy voice. This was intentionally creepy and injects new life into body parts other films cannot reach.

Dan the ‘hero’ is an idiot. He is played by Bruce Abbott who was in the 1992-1993 TV show ‘Dark Justice’. Diabolical things happen in amusingly vicious ways. Only Combs can act and one can see why this film type-cast him for life. Still for all its flaws (animal abuse and bad acting) this is WAY better than 'The Barn'.

Best Lines:
“What were you researching?”

“Does this building have a basement?”

“How can you teach such drivel?”

“Do you agree that he’s dead now?”

“A written apology for this entire affair.”

“He failed! Not I!”

“Wasn’t fresh enough.”

“Rather irrationally.”

“Quite dead.”

Necronmicon (1993)
This Lovecraft inspired film is dire.

The Puppet Masters (1994)

House (1986)

The Frighteners (1996)

Maniac Cop (1987)