Thursday, April 30, 2015

Weird Loners on FOX

Weird Loners is a new series that premiered at the very end of this past March on FOX. It was created by Michael J. Weithorn and is a single-camera comedy about four people who are afraid of relationships and form an unlikely friendship in their Queens home.

In the series there are four main characters, including Caryn (Becki Newton) a hygienist who was engaged but breaks it off after a brief romantic encounter with Slosh. There's also Eric (Nate Torrence), a goofy toll collector whose father unexpectedly passes away his estranged cousin Slosh offers to move in to "look after him" (which is completely untrue) Slosh (Zachary Knighton) has actually just lost his job because he is such a womanizer and he then lost his apartment. And then there's Zara (Meera Rohit Kumbhani) who becomes friends with Eric after buying one of her odd paintings. She has a lot of angst and gets fed up with the others fairly easily.

There are a number of interesting relationships on the show. Caryn and Slosh have a strange sort of rivalry going on, even though they are clearly attracted to one another. It definitely doesn't help that Slosh is such a womanizer and Caryn becomes entranced very easily. Flirting with Slosh once made her break off her engagement for crying out loud! Eric and Zara also have an interesting relationship because they are both so odd. I'm interested to see how these relationships develop throughout the season, especially since the whole premise of the show is around people who are bad at maintaining relationships.

The show's production value is definitely high, and the production design is actually really nice. The character's rooms fit their personalities well and the rest of the set decoration is very detailed. A lot of thought was definitely put into each frame and I really admire that. The costumes are also very well done and fit the characters' moods, which is very important

I personally am not a huge fan of the show. I think the characters are very outlandish and I have a hard time believing them. The jokes on the show are a bit childish and that contributes to my dislike of it. I do think the design is good, but the show just doesn't work with me because the characters are so annoying.

Organge is the new black is back??

'Orange is the New Black' will be back in june. If you didm't know, well now you do. Season 3 of "Orange is the New Black" will be premiering on netflix june 6th and available to stream june 12th. If you didn't see the first two seasons, I suggest you get right on that. There is so much to see, literally and figuratively. Unless you don't like drama, love, comedy and just a good story then don't watch it. You probably won't even be reading this if you weren't interested. Anyways….  I don't want to spoil all the fun so I won't go in details. So here is a,little bit of what you might expect to watch.

The first season it mainly follows Piper, the main character. She was arrested and put in jail because of old drug relations with her ex-girlfriend. She was drawn into the life of drug dealing and then had to pay the price. Piper is faced with a lot of obstacles ranging from ex-girlfriend drama to possible new girlfriend problems..key word possible. One of the inmates decides that she wants to date piper. Piper has to learn to deal with life in prison nd the ability to stand on her own.

In the second season, it explores the lives of the other inmates. It gives light on the struggles of life in prison and even the life before prison. We sometimes forget that others live cry different lives than us and people across the country face problems that others only have seen in the movies. People can't choose the cards they have been dealt. And unforunitly some people are thrown into a life of being in prison that could've been avoided. 

I am really excited for the next season because I can't wait for the characters to develop more. Despite it's vulgarity sometimes, if you look past it the story is actually a beautiful story. 

Game Of Thrones Season 5

As always, Game Of Thrones is back and better than ever. Season five kicked off just three weeks ago and the show continue to blow me away. Every aspect of this series is executed flawlessly, from its cinematography down to its titles. I would go as far as to say that this is the best TV series ever made.

Not only is the production quality of the show outstanding but so is the cast. There are few actors in the series that i recognize from other films however after every episode i am blown away by all of them. And there is a lot of them. The show is extremely deep and follows countless characters, and storylines.  

On top of that there are Dragons... Who doesn't like watching shows that have giant man eating winged lizards? The CGI is another aspect of the show that is phenomenal. However, the CGI of the dragons is so expensive that the show can only have them on for a limited amount of screen time. Animations can really rack up the bills fast, however I am glad that they dont over due the dragons so in the long run I'm happy with it. 

If you haven't started watching Game Of Thrones I highly recommend that you start. It will take you by surprise. 

True Detective

True Detective is an HBO original drama series that first premiered in January of 2014. This show, created and written by author Nic Pizzolatto, is designed as an anthology, or a series that changes plot and cast in between every season. The first season consists of eight episodes, costarring Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey as partner homicide detectives.

McConaughey plays "Rust" Cohle, a very intelligent detective that, due to his own ethics, is compelled to ravenously pursue a serial killer even though it brings great danger to his own well being. Rust suffers from depression, insomnia and alcoholism, all of which stem from the untimely death of his young daughter followed by the divorce of his wife. While Rust may be a flawed character who does not believe in or follow the norms of society, he still acts as the moral epicenter of the show.

Harrelson plays a decorated and veteran detective named Marty Hart. Marty has a troubled relationship with himself, his partner, and his family that eventually leads up to many of the troubles within his character. Marty's demons eventually get ahold of him before he turns to alcohol and divorces his wife. While Marty and Rust are partners they do not necessarily get along, this leads them to disagree on much of the morality of humanity and the human existence.

The plot of True Detective jumps between the years 1995, 2002, and 2012 while Marty Hart and Rust Cohle are delivering the tale of a previous homicide investigation that they both worked on. All previous information on the case was tragically lost in hurricane Rita, so the two characters were asked by investigators to recount their professional relationship, separate home relationships, and affiliation with the Dora Lange murder case. We bounce between the past and present while we progressively learn more about our character, the case, and that the perpetrator may still yet be at large.

I would highly recommend that everyone check out True Detective at some point. It is a show that is shot beautifully with an amazingly interesting story. The first time I watched it I was bored during the first episode and gave up on it; however, after I got to the third the show greatly increases in pace. The show is also scheduled to release a second season coming up in June of 2015.

'Lip Sync Battle' Spike TV

Lip Sync Battle is a new show that premiered earlier this month [April 2, 2015] on Spike. If this show sounds familiar the reason may be because you watch Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.  "Lip Sync Battle" was a game that Jimmy played with some of his guests that he had on his show.  This show on Spike is a spin-off of that game but is taken much more seriously and the actors use props and back up dancers and plan out a routine for round 2.

When you hear that these actors are lip syncing songs you may think it can't be that entertaining, but it really is! If a celebrity I like performs of course I enjoy it more, but even celebrities I don't really know that well do a really good job. It seems like all of the guests have been practicing for at least a week before performing it.

Here is one of my favorite original battles that was on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, this was a special one because Will FerrelKevin Hart, & Jimmy were all battling against one another:

Now look at how Spike TV took this game to the next level! 
Watch what I believe is the best lip sync performance so far on this show.
Anne Hathaway chose Wrecking Ball, by Miley Cyrus. Anne doesn't just lip sync the song but reenacts parts from the music video! 

I give this show a rating of 8.7/10. This show has a great host, LL Cool J who always seems to know what to say. This show gets a rating high within the eight's because Chrissy Teigen is a "Color commentator" on the show, so there is literally never a dull moment in-between acts. This show is constistently aesthetically pleasing and if Spike can continue to get A-List celebrities to battle each other, I think this show will continue to be a big success! 


Bridesmaids is a wedding comedy from 2011. The main character, a thirty-something named Annie’s (Kristen Wiig) life is falling apart. Despite her love for baking, her retail cake shop failed miserably, leaving her finances in bad shape. She now works a dead-end job as a jewelry store clerk, which she loathes. She is also forced to share an apartment with two bizarre roommates, who don't respect her personal space. On top of that, she is in a dysfunctional “friends with benefits” relationship with misogynistic Ted, who treats her solely as a last-resort sex partner. The only positive aspect of her life at the moment is when she finds out that her best friend Lillian of 16 years is getting married. Annie is initially happy for her, however, soon things take a turn for the worst when Annie starts to become overtaken with jealousy. As Annie observes Lillian’s wedding party, she feels inferior.  The other bridesmaids are all wealthy and married, both things that Annie is not, and she envies this. One of the bridesmaids in particular, Helen (Rose Byrne), really gets under Annie’s skin, and competition for Lillian’s affection and attention ensues.

As Annie seems to be losing the competition for being crowned Lillian’s maid of honor at every turn, another positive change enters her life in the form of police officer Nathan Rhodes. She becomes infatuated with him initially, however eventually gives up on the relationship due to the other failures in her life. As Annie continues to try to one-up Helen, she keeps pushing herself further and further away form Lillian. She suffers a mental breakdown, and struggles to turn her life back around, since she has left a train of ruins. However in the end, she is able to make it up to Lillian, as well as Rhodes, and the wedding party is brought closer together as they finally learn to co-exist peacefully.

Ex Machina

     I was told to watch Ex Machina with the person I'd seen Her with. The movies are similar, both feature AI women portrayed beautifully. However tonally the movies could not be farther apart.  Ex Machina is a powerful film that plays with audience expectation and creates a setting that is striking and unique. 

     Alex Garland, of 28 Days Later and Dredd, wrote and directed the psychological sci-fi thriller. The film is a blend of thought provoking cultural importance and visual storytelling. The main characters are Caleb, a sympathetic hard worker, who has won the lottery to meet his boss Nathan, who Caleb describes as a Mozart of programming. The last of the major players is Ava, an AI created by Nathan that Caleb is to give a Turing test. A test to see if Ava truly has consciousness. 

     The cast does a phenomenal job. Domnhall Gleeson, who actually played an AI himself in Black Mirror, is believably tepid and Oscar Isaac is brutally intimidating, both physically and mentally, as Nathan. This is the first major role for Alicia Vikander, who plays Ava, who creates a strong dissonance between the humans. 

     The film is heady. All the major players are hyperintelligent. In a moment in the film Nathan and Caleb are sitting under a hut on Nathan's beautiful estate. The colors are constantly blue and green outside and inside, when the power cuts out especially, the walls are red. This is an ode to RGB color. Nathan and Caleb are sitting under the awning and Caleb says "I am become death, the destroyer of worlds." Nathan says Caleb is quotable. Caleb responds that it's a quote by Oppenheimer the inventor of the atomic bomb. Nathan says he nows.

     Ex Machina is masterfully rendered futuristic space with a plot that is created by characters working off each other in unfamiliar spaces. The film is powerful and wants it starts moving it can't be stopped.

Follow Your Arrow

I figured, because it's the lat post of the semester, I'd change things up a bit. Looking at the music industry, the first names that seem to come to mind when people think of progressive, inspirational female writers are those of Beyonce, Meghan Trainor, etc.

If you're not a country music fan, then it would make some sense that you haven't heard of her, but a newcomer to the music scene that I feel deserves some credit is Kasey Musgraves. Her music ranges from being about love, life, and the usual, but a lot of her music is about bettering yourself and making the most of your life. 

By and far, my favorite song of her's thus far is "Follow Your Arrow". The song talks about how any given choice will evoke criticism from others, therefore one's best course is to remain true to oneself. Billboard listed "Follow Your Arrow" at number 2 on their list of 20 Best Songs of 2013, saying that "you didn't have to be a hardcore country fan to boogie along to Kacey Musgraves' lighthearted call to "make lots of noise and kiss lots of boys -- or lots of girls, if that's something you're into". "Follow Your Arrow" received mixed reviews due to some of the song's controversial lyrics. Some called the country tune "An attack on Christians", while some called it "signs of shifts in country music" due to the song's positive reference to homosexuality. Regardless, she is definitely an artist that is worth checking out and giving her music a listen. I'll make it easy... Here's "Follow Your Arrow". Enjoy!

High School Musical Brought Back the Musical Movie

I remember waiting anxiously for High School Musical to premiere on Disney Channel in 2006. It was not a very highly anticipated movie because it was "just another DCOM." However, this movie's fame blew up immensely as soon as it came out and paved the way for musical movies to come back into the scene.

After this movie was released, it became very popular for Broadway musicals to create movies, such as Hairspray or Mamma Mia!. Also, Disney Channel tried to follow up with musicals that were not nearly as popular but still in the limelight, like Camp Rock or Starstruck. High School Musical was a very large part of my childhood that I will never forget. I am obsessed with musical theatre and this just gave me a new genre to fangirl over. It became popular again for teenagers to listen to musical theatre and I finally wasn't THAT big of a loser anymore.

High School Musical was a phenomenon and  released two more movies after the first, with the third hitting the big screen. I will alwayys remember how sad I was at the end of the third movie, because it felt like a significant part of me was over. High School Musical made stars out of many people such as Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, or Ashley Tisdale. It brought new talent to the screen and was a hit of its time. I still love High School Musical and appreciate all that it has done for the musical theatre movie world.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Samurai Champloo

Samurai Champloo is an action packed animated series that has a ton of kick ass fight scenes and never takes itself too seriously.  The characters are fun and interesting and are developed very well throughout the twenty six episode show. Aside from the action and story, Samurai Champloo has a very recognizable soundtrack that is a mashup of hip-hop and electronic which gives the setting of feudal Japan a very fresh, if not somewhat out of place, feeling to it.

 The story revolves around Fuu,  a waitress who enlists in the help of two samurai to hunt down the man that killed her father, referred to as the "man who smells of sunflowers". Mugen, a rude and unorthodox swordsman, Jin, a calm and emotionless samurai, and Fuu travel from town to town, embarking in one adventure after the other. Every episode, apart from a few two parters, focus on new environments and side characters which keeps the show fresh and entertaining. From accidentally thwarting a national revolution to entering eating contests and playing intense games of baseball, first time watchers will never expect what will happen next.
Fans of Cowboy Bebop, the animated space-western series, will find plenty to love in Samurai Champloo as they share the same creator and a lot of the same aesthetics. Although the space and samurai themes could not be anymore different, they are similar in other ways. The group of loners and rejects, the dramatic and cinematic styles, and a heavy influence of music are shared amongst both while still keeping their own individual and unique charm. Fans of either series should absolutely watch both shows.          
Overall, I would recommend Samurai Champloo to people who are trying to get into animated Japanese shows or action cartoons in general as it really is considered a classic. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Why I Love Jimmy Fallon

It's no secret that Jimmy Fallon is a strong host for the Tonight Show; he's awkward, hilarious, and charismatic. I binge on his skits on a daily basis, and have a ton of inside jokes with my friends because of the show. But, in the past week, I've actually heard from a few of my... friends (if I can still count them as friends) that they don't think he's all that great. And, now, I have to prove, to them and to everyone else who is skeptical of him, why I think he is so amazing. Aside from all of his hilarious interviews, these are somethings I love about him and this show.

My first reason is generally because he's awkward. Like, really awkward. You would think that this is just his TV personality, but as proved in this interview with Nicole Kidman, you can see that he truly is, and probably always has been this incredibly awkward. This is a good connecting point with his audience, and it kind of shows the world that it's okay to be awkward.

Another thing I love about Jimmy Fallon is his "Ew" skits. These are a series of skits where he dresses as a teenage girl and pretends to be the "typical" teenage girl with his guests on the show.  They make fun of things that aren't "cool," make up slang and talk ridiculously, and it's actually pretty hilarious. My favourite thing about this skit is probably this "Official Music Video" featuring Will.I.Am.

My next favourite thing is definitely the lip sync battles on the show. I love seeing actors acting like they're singing. There's something about it that is more than a little hilarious. I've seen people like Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emma Stone get up on stage and become rock stars, not to mention the fact that Jimmy always puts on a amazing performance too.

Okay okay, and what about his rendition of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air's theme song? It was actually amazing. What better way is there to make an audience entertained than to push fun and nostalgia into one? For me, it honestly couldn't get much better than that. With the familiar catchy tune, I was caught from the first note. Jimmy is definitely the Fresh Host of Tonight.

The next sketch I'm going to talk about is his "Box of Lies" sketch. Okay, guessing what's inside of a box is kind of basic. But, why are the things inside of these boxes so strange?? Who decides these kind of things anyway? The fact that they're so odd makes the lies that Jimmy and his guests make up that much more funny, because no matter how weird it gets, it could totally actually be inside the box.

Lastly(and honestly on top of so many other things that I wish I could list but would go on forever and ever if i did), I think his renditions of songs with classroom instruments. Not only are these songs actually done well, but they just all look like they're having so much fun. They're basically doing exactly what we want to do when we're jamming out to our own music while being an actual child.

I really think Jimmy Fallon is an amazing host, and provides quality entertainment.

What time is it ???? Adventure Time !!!!!

Adventure time, 
C'mon, grab your friends, 
We'll go to very distant Lands 
With Jake the Dog, 
And Finn the Human, 
The Adventures'll never end, 
It's Adventure Time!

I have forgotten all the shows that provide me happiness throughout the stressful life of a college student. Adventure time is my escape from the real world, and into the imaginative world of Fin and Jake.

Adventure Time is an animated children's television that aired on cartoon network in 2010.  The series was created by Pendleton Ward.  The series is about a human body Fin and his adoptive dog/best friend/brother Jake. Jake is no ordinary dog, he has the ability to change shape, grow or shrink as he pleases.

According to Ward a single episode takes almost eight to nine month to draft , storyboard and complete, however multiple episodes are worked on at the same time.

Although the shows, run for about 11 minutes each they bring extreme laughter and developing stories to the table. It has been running for five seasons , currently in it's sixth and already renewed for it's seventh.

It's exciting to think that this 11 minute show is so to be considered for a feature-length film. For there are never enough episode to satisfy the boredom I go through when I have nothing to do for the summer.