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Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Teen Wolf S6E4+E5: Face to Faceless & Pressure Test.

Teen Wolf
Series 6
Episode 4+Episode 5
Face to Faceless & Pressure Test.

Well, the show is certainly making this easy on me. Getting an eight-hundred word review out of two whole episodes, aired back to back, should be ridiculously easy, even given Teen Wolf's tendency to be heavy on ominous hand-waving and light on anything of actual substance.

In the aftermath of the death of two young werewolves, Scott meets with Gerard and Tamora, hoping to come to a peace agreement -- only for it to become clear that Tamora is uninterested in peace, and for the meeting to go sharply sideways when the faceless fear creature appears in the tunnels, driving Tamora's hunters mad with panic. Meanwhile, Liam is cornered by the now radicalised lacrosse team, who publicly beat him in an effort to make him shift. Afterwards, two werewolves, accused of the murder of several of Tamora's hunters, take shelter in the Sheriff's station, only for it to be swiftly blockaded by Tamora and her hunters. As the clock ticks down to Tamora storming the station and a traitor amidst the sheriff's deputies causes trouble, the fear creature appears, driving two deputies to take their own lives. Elsewhere, Deaton, Cody, and Mason discover the identity of the fear creature: An Anukite, a double-faced shapeshifter that drives people mad with horror.

So, my views on these episodes are largely positive, but we're going to have to address the elephant in the room: Having several heroic white law enforcement officials being threatened by a villainous, gun-toting black woman.

Monday, 21 August 2017

Game of Thrones S7E6: Beyond the Wall

Game of Thrones
Series 7, Episode 6
Beyond the Wall

Jon is such a gigantic failure. As a military leader. As a hero. As a king. As a person. He has failed at nearly every endeavour he has applied himself to, and someone else has always had to bail him out and pay the price for it -- and now, and now, his utter incompetence has finally had a lasting impact. Just not on him. God knows, this show can never let any negative consequence stick to Jon.


Let's get on with it.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

What We're Watching 19/8/17

What We're Watching

The Defenders.

I wasn't actually aware that The Defenders was out until someone told me yesterday. Since then, I've had just enough time to watch the first two episodes, and so far, my verdict is that it's a bit too messy to really be enjoyable.

Because episode one and episode two are mostly set-up, meaning that we have four distinct plot threads with four distinct characters plus their supporting casts, with lighting and colour cues used to distinguish between them, and with the majority of the interaction coming from incidental meetings between supporting cast members.

Even when our four main cast members do start to meet up with each other in episode two, it sometimes feels oddly forced and jarring: While Matt meeting Jessica was pretty well done, I think, Luke's encounter with Danny feels like a bizarre confluence of coincidences that didn't really amount to anything.

Still, apparently Sigourney Weaver is going to call someone a 'baka' at some point, so I have that to look forward to.


Re:Creators has now entered its final arc, with all the Creations fighting against Altair -- well, almost all. Several people from Altair's side have now defected to the good guys (including Blitz, after what might actually have been the most emotionally charged scene of the show), but she still has Charon on her side, at least.

(Charon, who may or may not be brainwashed, or who may just have been evil all along, and Selestia hadn't reached that point in her canon yet. He certainly has an evil looking mech, a purple, black and red Dark Vogelchevaliar.)

The show still has a ways to go, being only on episode eighteen, so it seems likely that something will interrupt and stop this battle, instead of it being an uninterrupted six or seven episode long fight.

Game of Thrones.

Game of Thrones has had an odd seventh series. While it got off to a good start, it's now becoming readily apparent that Benioff and Weiss have no idea how to juggle all of the plot threads set up, and are rushing their way towards the end.

(Presumably they really want to get started on that godawful slavery show.)

Because the truth is, you could have easily gotten two ten episode series out of the war between Cersei and Daenerys, with Jon trying to stay neutral and prepare for the White Walker invasion, before reluctantly siding with Daenerys -- leaving one seven to ten episode series for dealing with the White Walkers.

Instead, the storylines are clumsily mashed together, which is how we've ended up with a few episodes about the war between the queens, and then that entire storyline being abruptly derailed to have more stuff about the White Walkers. Disappointing.

Friday, 18 August 2017

Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice

Senua's Sacrifice

Was ... Was everyone except me aware of this game? I swear, I'd never even heard of it before it was already out and getting reviewed, and even then, I only actually heard about it because of the controversy over Jim Sterling's initial low review score for it. Were it not for that, this game would have completely gone over my head, possibly for months.

Which would have been a shame. A perfect game, Hellblade is not -- it's nowhere even in the vague ballpark of perfect -- but a meticulously researched, artistically driven game that clearly had a lot of passion and care put into it by developer Ninja Theory it is, and it's one of the most devastatingly realistic portrayals of psychosis in fiction, and certainly the most realistic in video games. It was only able to achieve that feat because Ninja Theory consulted heavily with neuroscientists, the Wellcome Trust, and people who suffer from schizophrenia.

It's also worth mentioning that this game was worked on by just twenty people, a comparatively tiny amount for a triple-A game.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Dark Shadows (2012) (Review by Reecey.)

Dark Shadows (2012)
(Review by Reecey.)

Let’s start with this basic fact about the film Dark Shadows: Everything that happens in this film is Barnabas’ fault.

Everything and absolutely.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Fate/Apocrypha E7: Where Freedom Lies

Episode 7
Where Freedom Lies.

So, in last week's review, I said that we were now set-up for a battle between Mordred (Saber of Red) and Chiron (Archer of Black), which despite being a totally random match-up, is at least a potentially compelling one, given that they're the two most sympathetic Servants in the cast by quite a wide margin. Similarly, I said we were set-up for a battle with Sisigou on one side, and Fiore and Caules on the other, which is -- less compelling, but never mind.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Teen Wolf S5E13: After Images

Teen Wolf
Series 5, Episode 13
After Images

As we head into the thirteenth episode of Teen Wolf, we all have a very tense, suspenseful question on our minds: Will anything actually happen in this episode?

Well, the answer is yes! Or sort of. I'm beating an old drum here, but Teen Wolf has a terrible problem with not being able to decide between episodic and serialised storytelling, and that's a problem because while each form of story has to achieve a similar goal with its episodes -- telling a discrete arc that builds to a climax -- the methods they use to do so are very different.