Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Twisted – 1.01 – Pilot – A to Z Challenge – Day 20


“... and I don't give a damn 'bout my bad reputation”


“We cannot expect people to have respect for law and order until we teach respect to those we have entrusted to enforce those laws.

- Hunter S. Thompson


Prologue

Today, I’m writing about the pilot of ABC Family’s latest teen mystery: Twisted.
I was excited about this show beyond belief but things managed to go from bad to worse and never got any better. It never made it on to my ‘must see TV’ list unfortunately. I adore almost all of the actors and actresses young and old alike but the writing is lackluster and the pacing tends to plod along.

About the Show

Seasons: 1| No. of Episodes: 19
Premiere Date: March 19, 2013 | End Date: N/A
Status: On-Air

Genre(s): Teen drama, Mystery, Thriller

Story in a nutshell: The series focuses on charming sixteen-year-old Danny Desai (Avan Jogia), who was charged with killing his aunt when he was eleven. Having spent five years in juvenile detention, he is released and returns to his hometown of Green Grove, New York. While trying to rekindle old friendships and facing the challenges of dealing with his judgmental peers, Danny becomes the prime suspect in the murder of a classmate. Realizing the town does not care about the truth and only wants to see him charged with the crime, Danny becomes determined to clear his name. Meanwhile, he must maintain a secret he has never told anyone: the reason he killed his aunt.

Why I Wanted to Watch the Show: The reason why I initially wanted to support this show is because it was something a little different from the usual things that air on ABC Family. This show was supposed to be about a male lead who is also a person of color. It was also supposed to be more of a psychological thriller.
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Title: Pilot | Writer: Adam Milch | Director: Jon Amiel

Episode Summary: Danny, Jo, and Lacey were best friends in childhood. At age 11, Danny murdered his Aunt Tara and was placed in a juvenile detention center. Five years later, Lacey is part of the popular crowd, while Jo is a social outcast; the two no longer friends. Newly released, Danny tries to reconnect with the girls. Jo warms up to him and they go to a party thrown by Regina, Lacey's best friend. Lacey also begins to warm up to Danny when they share a bag of chips in Danny's bedroom later in the evening. That night, Regina texts Danny that she knows why he killed his aunt. The next day, she is found murdered, the necklace from her neck the only thing missing. Danny becomes the prime suspect, and it is revealed that he has the necklace.
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Awards


Character of the Night
• Jo

Best Character Interactions
• Danny & Jo
• Jo & Rico

Most Memorable Moment
• Drunk!Jo babbling on about her night to her mother

Best Line
• Regina: I've been super vicious since I went off the gluten.

Read more: http://www.tvfanatic.com/quotes/shows/twisted/episodes/pilot/#ixzz2zgSXN3iy

Best Scene
• Danny comes to Jo’s rescue when she gets in over her head at a popular people’s party.

That Awkward Moment
• That awkward moment when you ex-bestie who is a convicted murderer tries to talk to you in front of the whole school like he just got back from summer vacation.

Miscellaneous


Favorite Actors
•Avon Jogia and Kylie Bunbury

Favorite Main Character
• Lacey

Least Favorite Main Character
• Jo

Favorite Side Character
• Rico

Fun Fact: The show’s original title was ‘Socio’.
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Grade: C+
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Comparable Shows
If you are interested in finding more shows like Twisted then I recommend you watch one, some or all of the following shows: The Lying Game, Pretty Little Liars and/or Secret Circle.
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Up Next: In the queue for tomorrow is a Mini Recap/Retro Review for one of my favorite, ‘gone too soon’ shows of my hipster youth, Undeclared. I’ll be writing about the pilot so be sure to come back and check out the blog tomorrow.





Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Supernatural – 5.22 – Swan Song – A to Z Challenge – Day 19


“Carry On My Wayward Son”


Carry on my wayward son
There'll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don't you cry no more

- Carry On Wayward Son by Kansas from their 1976 album Leftoverture


Prologue

Up for discussion today is hands down my favorite season finale of Supernatural. Honestly, had it not been for the last 10 seconds of the episode, this could have easily served as the show’s series finale. It was definitely the culmination of Eric Kripke’s vision for his show.

It is said that sometimes a writer’s characters take on a life of their own and the original story intended has to evolve and in the case of Supernatural, the series that was once known as the ‘little show that could’ that is just what happened.

About the Show

Seasons: 9| No. of Episodes: 188
Premiere Date: 09/13/2005 | End Date: N/A
Status: On-Air

Genre(s): Horror, Fantasy, Action, Adventure, Mystery

Story in a nutshell: The series follows the two brothers as they hunt demons, ghosts, monsters and other supernatural beings in the world.

Best Thing about This Episode: When the episode begins it frames the story with a love letter to the Impala, which the fandom calls Baby and made her the most important object in the universe.

Best Reason to Watch the Show: The chemistry between Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles is amazing and has carried the show through some very rough patches. I've seen very few actors care so deeply and genuinely about their characters and love their fans as much as their fans love them. Also the twists on mythology and urban legends is pretty dang cool as well.
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Title: Swan Song
Teleplay: Eric Kripke/Story: Eric "Giz" Gerwirtz
Director: Steve Boyum

Episode Summary: Chuck begins to narrate the life and times of the Impala and the boys' life inside of it. Chuck reveals their time spent in the Impala and how they made it their home throughout the years before and after they began hunting.

Remembering a comment made by Lucifer in the future, Dean realizes that the fallen angel is in Detroit. Sam and Dean confront Lucifer, who knows of their plan to use the Horsemen's rings to trap him back in his cage. Despite this, Sam offers himself as a vessel, hoping that he can overcome Lucifer's control and throw himself into the prison. Lucifer is too strong, and Sam disappears in his body.

As Lucifer tries to make Sam happy by killing the demons sent by Azazel to manipulate him during his childhood, Dean learns from Chuck the time and location of the final battle between Michael and Lucifer. The following day at the battleground—Stull Cemetery in Stull, KS (just outside of Lawrence, Kansas) — Lucifer tries to talk Michael out of fighting, but he refuses. However, Castiel interrupts the fight by banishing Michael with holy fire. An angry Lucifer kills Castiel, and then snaps Bobby's neck when he shoots him. He then starts brutally beating Dean, but stops when he notices an old army man of Sam's inside the Impala revealed earlier during Chuck's narration.

Sam remembers his life growing up with Dean, and manages to take control of his body. He uses the rings to reopen the door to the cage, and prepares to jump inside. Michael returns and tries to stop him, but he too is pulled into the pit while grappling with Sam. Castiel, resurrected again as an angel, heals Dean and brings Bobby back to life. He returns to Heaven, hoping to bring order now that Michael is gone.
As Dean attempts to move on, he seems to turn his back on hunting and returns to Lisa. Chuck smiles after finishing his narration of the story, and vanishes into thin air. Later that night, a street light flickers out and Sam is revealed outside Lisa's home, looking in the window at the "family" eating dinner together...
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Awards


Character of the Night
• Sam Winchester
• Baby Winchester

Best Character Interactions
•Sam and Dean

Most Memorable Moment
• Sam’s consciousness is able to break free for a moment and that allows him to jump into the pit and stop the apocalypse.

Best Line
•Chuck: So what’s it all add up to? Well, it’s hard to say. But me, I’d say it was a test. For Sam and Dean. And I think they did alright. Up against good, evil, angels, devils, destiny, and God himself - They made their own choice. They chose family. And well, isn’t that kinda the whole point?

Best Scene
• Dean arrives at Stull cemetery

Highlights


Memorable Moments

• Dean put on his mixtape that is labeled ‘kick it in the ass’
• Lucifer uses his finger to draw a pitchfork in the frozen window.
• The flashbacks to Sam and Dean as little kids making the Impala theirs.

Lines I Loved

• Chuck: Three days later another car rolled off that same line. No one gave two craps about her, but they should’ve. Because this 1967 Chevrolet Impala would turn out to be the most important car... no, the most important object in pretty much the whole universe.

• Lucifer: A wrestling match inside your noggin. I like the idea. Just you and me, one round, no tricks. You win, you jump in the hole. I win... well, then I win. What do you say, Sam? A fiddle of gold against your soul says I'm better than you.

• Sam: If this thing goes our way and I Triple Lindy into that box, you know I'm not coming back.

• Dean: Sammy? Sammy? It's okay, I'm here. I'm not going to leave you.

• Castiel: You got what you asked for Dean. No Paradise. No Hell. Just more of the same. I mean it Dean. What would you rather have? Peace - or freedom?

Scenes I'm Smitten With
• All of them, literally, except for the very last scene that closes the episode.

Miscellaneous


Favorite Actors
• Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles

Favorite Main Character
• I literally love the brothers equally though for very different reasons

Least Favorite Main Character
• In season 5 it was by and far Castiel (though I do love Misha to pieces)

Favorite Side Character
• Bobby Singer

Fun Fact: Stull Cemetery is a real cemetery near Lawrence, Kansas, where Sam and Dean were born. It has a lot of lore associated with it, including that it may be a gate to Hell.

Tasty Tidbit: The phrase "Swan Song" refers to a final work or performance, or the final part of a story. It was also the name of the record label founded by Led Zeppelin.

Side Note: After the episode fans placed an ad in The Hollywood Reporter to mark Eric Kripke stepping done as showrunner.
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Grade: A+
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Comparable Shows
If you are interested in finding more shows like Supernatural then I recommend you watch one, some or all of the following shows: Grimm, The Walking Dead and/or X-Files.
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Up Next: In the queue for tomorrow is another ABC Family show: Twisted. I will be breaking down the pilot. Come back and check it out!



Monday, April 21, 2014

Revenge– 1.22 – Reckoning – A to Z Challenge – Day 18


“The game is still afoot”


'A man that studieth revenge keeps his own wounds green.'

- Francis Bacon



Prologue
Up for discussion today is the first season of Revenge’s finale.

This is the only show on the ABC network that I watch. Ever since Lost ended I just haven’t really found anything else on the network to hold my attention. I’m not really into comedies, so that pretty much rules out all of their critically acclaimed stuff.

At first blush I remember thinking I thought this was a pretty weak finale but upon two rewatches I discovered I actually liked quite a bit more than when I first watched it.

About the Show

Seasons: 3| No. of Episodes: 63|Premiere Date: 09/21/2011| End Date: N/A | Status: On-Air

Genre(s): Soap Opera, Drama, Psychological thriller, Mystery

Story in a nutshell: Emily Thorne (Emily VanCamp) comes to the Hamptons and rents a beach house next to the Grayson family mansion for the summer. Emily is really Amanda Clarke, whose father was framed for treason when she was a little girl. After a lengthy trial, he was imprisoned for life, and was murdered in prison by agents of the people who framed him. Amanda was separated from him after his trial and never saw him afterwards. She has now returned to the Hamptons as an adult to get revenge on those who wronged her and her father. Her primary target is Victoria Grayson (Madeleine Stowe), matriarch of the Grayson family, who loved and betrayed Amanda's father.

Best Reason to Watch the Show: If you are looking for a show that is just good, soapy , ridiculous fun this is the show for you. It may be a bit over the top but the character motivations and relationships are compelling enough to keep you coming back for more. Also, if you are into live tweeting, I personally think this is best Sunday night shows to do it for.
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Title: Reckoning| Writer: Mike Kelley & Mark B. Perry| Director: Sanford Bookstaver

Episode Summary: Emily moves forward with the final phases of her master plan for revenge against the Graysons as their empire is slowly self-destructing. When Emily discovers her closest ally, Nolan, has been kidnapped and held hostage by the white-haired man, she comes face to face with him and a battle to the death ensues.

Ashley has to make an important decision regarding her loyalties to Conrad and Victoria, and she betrays Emily once again by telling Daniel what she saw happen between Jack and Emily. Daniel confronts Emily, and Emily says the reason she did what she did was because he was not the person she fell in love with and he is turning into all the things he never wanted to be, a Grayson. She gives him the engagement ring back.
Emily decides she will tell Jack that she loves him and reveal her true identity. However, she finds that Amanda is back and is pregnant, leaving Emily heartbroken.

Charlotte reveals an affair Jaime had with a history teacher to the whole school, embarrassing Jaime publicly; Declan tells Charlotte to never talk to him again.

Because of John McGowen, Victoria discovers Conrad signed contracts to kill David Clarke. Victoria and John McGowen fly to Washington D.C. for the incriminating trial of the century regarding Conrad Grayson and the recent terrorist allegations that have been released to the SEC.
The "white-haired man" pulls the wheel brakes off the plane with both Victoria Grayson and Lydia Davis on board, causing the plane to crash. After hearing that no survivors have been found, Charlotte calls Declan to tell him, but he yells that he will never speak to her again before angrily hanging up the phone. Charlotte overdoses.

Nolan reveals to Emily a dark secret from the evidence that Conrad tried to destroy and that the framing and death of her father involves so much more than the Graysons; many others played a role in the false accusation. Emily finds out her mother is still alive from a very old security camera tape of Victoria, and she tells Nolan to resume playing the tape so she can presumably find her mother.
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Awards


Character of the Night
• Emily

Best Character Interactions
• Emily & Daniel
• Emily & Victoria

Most Memorable Moment
• Emily waiting on ‘The White Haired Man’ with an axe

Best Line
• Emily: In every life, there comes a day of reckoning, a time when unsettled scores demand their retribution. And our own lies and transgressions are finally laid bare.

Best Scene
•The fight scene between Emily and ‘The White Haired Man’

That Awkward Moment Award
• That awkward moment when your plan quite literally blows up in your face.


Miscellaneous


Favorite Actors
• Emily VanCamp, Josh Bowman and Connor Paolo

Favorite Main Character
• Nolan

Least Favorite Main Character
• Ashley

Favorite Side Character
• Takeda

Least Favorite Side Character
• Tyler

Fun Fact: The show is inspired by the Alexandre Dumas novel The Count of Monte Cristo.

Tasty Tidbit: The pilot episode scored a 3.3 Nielsen rating in the 18-49 age demographic and 10.02 million viewers, winning the 10 pm hour time slot against CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Side Note: During the show’s first season it was ABC’s highest-rated series overall in Wednesday’s 10 p.m. hour in more than 4 years since Lost during the 2006-07 television season.
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Grade: C+
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Comparable Shows
If you are interested in finding more shows like Revenge then I recommend you watch one, some or all of the following shows: Arrow, The Good Wife and/or Scandal.
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Up Next: Tomorrow I will be writing about my favorite season finale of Supernatural. That episode would be 5x22: Swan Song.




Sunday, April 20, 2014

Beauty and the Beast – 1.05– Saturn Returns – Retro Review: The Perks of Being Catherine Chandler


Beauty and the Beast – 1.05– Saturn Returns – Retro Review: The Perks of Being Catherine Chandler

“The Perks of Being Catherine Chandler”


‘The soul of the newly born baby is marked for life by the pattern of the stars at the moment it comes into the world, unconsciously remembers it, and remains sensitive to the return of configurations of a similar kind.’
― Johannes Kepler, Harmonies of the World


Preface

Well, I just want to say that I was really impressed with turn out last week on my inaugural Beauty and the Beast Retro Recap. It was the second most viewed review here on Spoiler TV so I just want to say thank you. I love my Beasties and I’m proud to be a part of this fandom. Always have been and always will be.

Up for discussion this week is actually the first episode I ever watched of Beauty and the Beast, 1x05: Saturn Returns. It was only after this episode that I decided to give the pilot a shot and well, the rest is history. ..

So, obviously, this episode holds a special place in my heart but objectively this is just a really well-crafted episode that runs the gambit of emotions and situations. Every character gets their chance to shine. The pacing was great. The dialog was fun. The party was great and a breath of fresh air. It gave us as the audience a chance to see most of our characters let loose and have fun.

So onwards and upwards with the second installment of my Beauty and the Beast Retro Review...


The Recap & Review


Title: Saturn Returns
Story by: Blair Singer/Teleplay by: Blair Singer & Kelly Souders
Director: Steven A. Adelson

Episode Summary: It's Cat's birthday, and things get complicated when she has to cancel her plans with Vincent because her sister throws her a surprise party where she shares an unexpected moment with Evan.

Vincent is caught on security camera preventing a robbery, leading his photo to appear in the newspapers, and Cat investigates the disappearance of a woman after her fiancé puts their engagement notice in the paper. It turns out that the missing woman was in witness protection and trying to live a normal life.
She disappeared when she saw her photograph in the engagement notice, worried that the gangster she was to testify against might have seen it. The gangster kills her case officer and shows up in his place, as he tries to find her.

Cat tracks the missing woman to a motel and arrives before the gangster. Cat and the gangster fight, with Cat winning. The missing woman is reunited with her fiancé. Cat pretends to be surprised at the party.

At the end of the evening, Evan kisses her, and they are seen by Vincent, who leaves a present for Cat on the window ledge and wanders off.
After the party, Cat goes to see Vincent and invites him for dinner.The last few scenes show Cat preparing dinner and Vincent walking to the date. However, he blacks out and does not show up. The candles burn down. Vincent wakes on one of the Brooklyn Bridge pylons.
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My thoughts on the writer…
I really liked this writing team but they were never put together again and more notably not asked back for season 2. While Blair Singer went on to write other episodes solo as well as one with Roger Grant, Kelly Souders was often paired with Brian Peterson (who was also not asked back for season 2). I really liked how they went out of the way to give every character a moment to shine as well as balanced the time between Cat and her life, Vincent and his life and his time together. The dialog was fun while also very realistic. They even managed to capture a few moments that felt very believable between Cat and Heather as well as Cat and Tess. I honestly can’t say enough good things about this duo and the work they did on this episode. My only regret is they never got the chance to work together again on Beauty and the Beast.

My thoughts on the director…
While this episode marked Mr. Adelson’s Beauty and the Beast directorial debut, this episode certainly wasn’t his last. Adelson has a clean and almost blunt directorial aesthetics for the most part. But he also has a way of getting the most out of the scene without the frame feeling crowded. I like that he really thrives on capturing not only the emotions of the actors but manages to even encapsulate the scene’s emotional aurora.
I’m very much looking forward to the next time he directs an episode of Beauty and the Beast which will actually be episode 2x20: Ever After.

My thoughts on the case of the week…
During the first season, for the most part, (and if you listen to the podcast, you know in the second season I still wouldn’t bat an eye if one week Cat and Tess were suddenly no longer cops but instead private detectives) I really didn’t care for the case of the week. It made the show feel too procedural in nature and the cases were often thinly veiled morality plays that tied into the theme of the week. After numerous re-watches, I’ve decided they were charming plot devices that helped build a bridge that eventually connected to other things and was a necessary evil.

Another problem with the cases of the week was the lack of originality. After watching the Law & Order franchise for quite literally more than half my life, not to mention CSI and NCIS, I can spot a red herring and ferret out the real perp in about 5 minutes flat in almost in procedural show but in the case of Beauty and the Beast, you can cut that time in half. I even figured out the ‘surprise’ twist long before it was said.

But for some reason, this really is one of my favorite cases of the week. I guess because the parallels to Cat and Vincent are so blatant yet poignant and not to mention the couple gets their happy ending thanks mostly in part to Cat.

My thoughts on the theme…
The theme of the week was very obvious but at the same time tied nicely into the case of the week.

The prevalent theme of the episode was: You can’t just assume what is right for someone else; they need to be allowed to make that choice for themselves.


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Important Incidents

• JT and Vincent go for a walk and Vincent stops a convenience store robbery a story that makes the papers.
• Heather throws Cat a surprise party with the help of Tess.
• With the help of JT, Vincent realizes just what is at stake for Cat if he continues to encourage her to spend time with him.
• Sarah asks JT out and he says no (later he takes her up on the offer of going out for coffee)
• Cat kisses Evan at her birthday party while Vincent looks on.

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Actor Assessments

Nicole Gale Anderson – This was some A+ casting because despite Nicole being Filipina and Kristin being of Dutch and Chinese descent they really look like they could be sister. Throw in the bonus that they both look like they could be Khaira Ledeyo's daughter and the wow factor of the casting is to be commended.

I've loved Nicole since the day she showed up on ABC Family's Make It or Break IT as the quintessential mean girl with a messed up family life.

My friend is a super fan of Nicole's and alerted me to the fact the she was on this show as Kristin's character's little sister and we made a date to watch the show together and well, it was right after the episode ended that I became willing to give this show a shot.

Nicole and Kristin's chemistry is so awesome. They play off each other really well and it is so easy to believe that they are sister. I hope Nicole gets to come back before the end of season 2 (if indeed the show gets cancelled like so many are predicting, but I'm not counting Beauty and the Beast out, just yet).
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Character Contemplations


Cat – Cat was already starting to feel the burden of keeping Vincent's secret and instead of running away from it she was leaning into it. I find it interesting because Cat essentially has everything Vincent had to give up: friends, a family that loves her, the ability to celebrate a birthday, the freedom to do as she pleases when she pleases as well as working a job where she is making an actual difference in the world. I really liked that Cat was feeling guilty. But I also like that she was following where her heart was leading her. I think that was something very difficult for Cat to do previously up until this point. I was a bit shocked that Cat didn't push Evan away and actually tried to use her being "tipsy" as an excuse. But the most important thing of all is that even with all this drama in her life, she still managed to be a good a cop and save the day and Vincent was even, indirectly (just the way I like it), able to help her solve the case. She also got a glimpse that a happy ending for her Vincent was possible.

Evan – This was strike one for Evan. I just couldn't believe he kissed Cat while his date was waiting on him. His saving grace is that it was done at the last moment and not right away and that he was obviously uncomfortable being alone with Cat, especially after such implied copious amounts of alcohol had been consumed. I too also couldn't believe that Evan Marks was on an internet dating website. But you just can't take away his good looks, charm and winning personality. I still find myself loving the chemistry between Max and Kristin to this very day. Mandler FOREVER, LOL!

Heather – If I had the opportunity to pick who could be my younger sibling, it would be Heather Chandler. Cute as a button, fiercely loyal and protective yet loves and knows how to party. Heather was just all sunshine, puppies and rainbows in this episode and she even got to interact with Tess and Evan.

Joe – Not much on the Joe front. But I did notice they were really going out of their way to make sure we noticed his wedding band in this episode. But I did like that we got to see both Boss!Joe and Downtime!Joe. I have to admit while I was never a fan of the Joe and Tess relationship, their scene in the photo booth was adorable. Hell, I even loved the little kiss and hug he gave to Cat. That really made it seem like the 125th precinct or at the very least the special victims unit was a close knit unit with nothing but love for each other.

JT – JT annoyed the living hell out of me this week in the first half of the episode because he came across as a nagging wife for the first time ever. It wasn't until we got a little backstory about how JT had to give up his life and go on the run with Vincent that things start to click with the JT and Vincent scenes. I also loved that they were trying to let JT have a life since Vincent was pursuing Cat. In the end JT had the most zingers and one liners and still managed to get back on track as the heart of the show before the episode was over.

Tess – Tess knows something is up. She even knows that it more than likely has to do with a guy. Tess feels a little left out of the loop but she is still there for Cat and trying to stay close with Cat. I love that Cat understands Tess (knows that the flowers are from her)and Tess is willing to give Cat leeway in their relationship. I also like that their personal disconnection does not affect how either one of them do their jobs in this episode. They are still able to have silent conversations and read each others signals and manage to save the day.

Vincent – I just want hold Vincent and never left him go. He is so turned around and conflicted about Cat. He is drawn to her, has been watching over her for so long and now he finally gets the chance to know her but there are so many perils when it comes to being in a relationship with him. He's already basically ruined JT's life in his eyes and really wants to take JT's advice and let Cat live her life without getting caught up in the negative consequence that being with him can cause. But that pull won't let go, not even after seeing her kissing another guy. Vincent even buys her a very thoughtful gift. There is a stereotype, especially in media that guys don't listen to women, so I think that is awesome that Vincent took the time to get her something meaningful that was based on a good memory about her mother. I was a little bummed out that Vincent was prevented from having dinner with Cat but deep down on the first watch, even I knew it was too soon for them to get together. PS: Boy was I relieved to learn that Vincent's fugue states weren't really caused by Cat.

VinCat - This is the episode that takes their relationship that has pretty much been classified as an uneasy "friendship" and transitioned it to a case of them both wanting to find out what this mysterious pull they both feel for each other really is. Of course it was just a tease but I love that Cat was the one to initiate it and tell Vincent that at the end of the day it was her choice to make about whether or not she wanted pursue any kind of relationship with him despite the dangers. It made me feel like their relationship, when it got to a serious development stage would be on equal footing. I really like both of the protagonists and I enjoy romantic relationships on TV that are built on strong foundations of friendship, equality and neither partner being perfect. This was a good building block for the relationship, in my opinion.

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The Highlights


Memorable Moments

1. Now that’s how you open an episode, with a restless and more importantly shirtless, Vincent tossing and turning in bed.
2. JT puts his finger in the string so Vincent can make a perfect bow for Cat’s birthday present
3. Cat practices her surprise face.
4. Cat and Heather hug.
5. Cat and Tess in the photo booth
6. Joe throws up air quotes at a crime scene
7. Cat practices her surprise face.

Laudable Lines

1. JT: … and I’m not asking her out because I live in an abandoned warehouse with a complicated roommate.

2. Vincent: I need some air.
JT: Open a window.

3. Vincent: JT, she makes me feel like… like I have a life again.
JT: Awfully dangerous for a guy who is supposed to be dead.

4. JT: What’s got you so amped up? OH! You must have seen Cat.

5. Cat: You seriously have something called phase B?

6. Evan: I didn’t know you thought my accent was sexy?

Scenes I’m Smitten With

1. JT and Vincent talk about Sarah. – It’s refreshing to be talking about someone else’s love life.
2. Cat goes to Evan’s lab to get the results and witty sexual tension type hijinks ensue.
3. Sarah confronts/asks out JT in the stairwell while he’s trying to steal stuff for the home alarm system he’s building.
4. Cat, Heather and Tess trash talk Claire as she walks away to the bathroom
5. JT embarrasses the crap out of Vincent by telling Cat in the most flowery way possible how Vincent feels since having actually met her.

The Lowlights

1. I was too easily able to solve the case of the week.
2. Not enough time spent with Cat and Heather (I really love them together).

Awards


Character of the Night
• Cat

Best Character Interactions
• Cat & Heather
• Cat & Vincent
• JT & Vincent

Most Memorable Moment
• Duh, you had to know this was coming, shirtless Vincent. (Excuse the fangirl moment, please)

Line of the Night
• Heather: Surprised, pissed or both?

Scene of the Night
• Cat and Lily/Amy have a heart to heart (and the parallels are uncanny)

That Awkward Moment
• That awkward moment when you tell a woman you like to move on and you catch her doing what appears to be just that with another guy.

The ‘Nosiest Little Sister’ Award
• Heather is as equally adorable as she is nosey

Miscellaneous


Recurring Elements
•Newspaper clippings

For Real?
• Evan kisses Cat while his date, Claire is waiting for him
• Michael just happened to be a doctor just like Vincent use to be?
• How the hell did Cat manage to get the thumb drive into the USB port without even looking on the first try? Witchcraft, I tell you!
• Evan's online dating profile, it justs more funny with each thing you notice.

Biggest Surprise of the Episode
• Vincent ends up on the Brooklyn Bridge.


My Music Picks
Raise Your Glass by Deana
• Take A Walk by Passion Pit


Things I Miss
• The Cat and Vincent character intros at the beginning of an episode
• The way Cat use to light up when she talked about her mother
•Cat feeling guilty about lying to everyone almost all of the time

Fun Fact: Vincent gave Cat flannel pajamas for her birthday (because that is what Cat’s mother use to get her for her birthday).

Tasty Tidbit: This episode has one of the shortest openings (the time before we get to the title card)of the series (03:19)

Style Spotlight: I absolutely love the shirt in the picture to left. I just had to hunt it down and make it mine. I love that is was soft and feminine but basic and could be dressed up or dressed down. It is also super comfy. Cat's wardrobe consists of a lot white flowy tops, so much so it could almost be considered a 'recurring element' to be honest. But this is one of my favorite tops.

Grade: A

Side Note: A lot of fans, me included, think that this is the episode the show came together and began to gel. It is frequently mentioned among Beasties I know as one of their favorite season 1 episodes.
====================================================================
Elite Eight Review Line Up

Here’s a list of the episodes that I will be writing Retro Recaps for until the hiatus is over:

Pilot – April 8, 2014
Saturn Returns – April 15, 2014
• Out of Control – April 22, 2014
• Bridesmaid up/Seeing Red – April 29, 2014
• Trust No One – May 6, 2014
• Insatiable – May 13, 2014
• Heart of Darkness – May 20, 2014
• Anniversary – May 27, 2014
• Bonus Review (on my blog): Date night – June 2, 2014


Plugs & Shameless Self-Promotion

If you’re bored and you’re re-watching season 2, how about you listen to my podcast for a fresh perspective, theories or just have a listen to a couple of
gals who just really love talking about Beauty and the Beast.

The DVMPE’s Beauty and the Beast Podcast
The Podcast’s Facebook Page
The Podcast's Email
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I would love for you to leave your thoughts and comments about when you first watched the pilot and some of your initial thoughts about the show below. I look forward to reading your comments.

ps: Don't forget to promote this and all positive Beauty and the Beast articles in all the social media you can. For instance be sure to click the like button, retweet this and +1 this article if you like it and appreciate this reviewer's hard work.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Queer As Folks– 1.01 – Premiere – A to Z Challenge – Day 17


“Nobody deserves to live in a closet”


‘What I'm not confused about is the world needing much more love, no hate, no prejudice, no bigotry and more unity, peace and understanding. Period.’
- Stevie Wonder


Prologue

Up for discussion today is the pilot episode of Queer as Folks - the US Version.

I love British television and tend to hate the American remakes of good British TV shows. But this was a pretty decent adaptation, I must say. This is not the type of TV I usually watch but it is the show that but Showtime on my radar as the premium cable station to watch.

About the Show

Seasons: 5 | No. of Episodes: 83
Premiere Date: 12/03/2000 | End Date: 08/07/2005
Status: Off-Air
Genre(s): Drama

Story in a nutshell: The series follows the lives of five gay men living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Brian (Gale Harold), Justin (Randy Harrison), Michael (Hal Sparks), Emmett (Peter Paige), and Ted (Scott Lowell); a lesbian couple, Lindsay (Thea Gill) and Melanie (Michelle Clunie); and Michael's mother Debbie Sharon Gless) and his uncle Vic (Jack Wetherall).
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Title: Premiere| Writer: Ron Cowen & Daniel Lipman| Director: Russell Mulcahy

Episode Summary: After a night out at the club Babylon with Michael, Emmett and Ted; Brian picks up a cute guy named Justin for a night of fun, but afterwards coldly rebuffs Justin's attempts to see him again. Michael also gets lucky taking home a hunk only to be happily interrupted for a trip to the hospital after Brian learns that Lindsay and Melanie have had a baby boy, Gus. In the meantime, Michael stays in the closet at work, which causes some problems with an interested co-worker while at the same time he struggles with feelings of jealousy over Brian's relationship with Justin.
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Awards


Character of the Night
• Michael

Best Character Interactions
• Brian & Justin

Most Memorable Moment
• Brian pours a bottle of water all of himself as part of his seduction ritual.

Best Line
•Emmett: When did 70’s night become 80’s night?
Ted: I remember this song from high school.


Best Scene
• Brian, Michael and Justin go to see baby Gus for the first time.

That Awkward Moment Award
• That awkward moment when you’re interested in someone and they’re interested in you but it’s just not the right time.

Miscellaneous


Favorite Actors
• Hal Sparks & Sharon Gless

Favorite Main Character
• Debbie Novotny

Least Favorite Main Character
• Emmett Honeycutt

Favorite Side Character
• Dr. David Cameron

Least Favorite Side Character
• Daphne Chanders

Fun Fact: The series was set in the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which it depicted with a good deal of creative license. Pittsburgh was chosen as the closest parallel to the UK series' industrial setting of Manchester, England. However, since Pittsburgh does not have a large gay district like San Francisco or New York, almost all of the Liberty Avenue scenes were filmed in and around the Church and Wellesley area of Toronto which is that city's gay village. In fact, not a single shot of the real Liberty Avenue was ever used in the series.

Tasty Tidbit: The series, at times, made humorous reference to its image in the gay community. A few episodes featured the show-within-a-show Gay as Blazes, a cheesy, dull, badly acted, and abundantly politically correct drama which Brian particularly disagreed with, and which was eventually cancelled.

Side Note: Queer as Folks was the first American television series that depicted simulated sex scene between two men containing mutual masturbation, anal sex, and rimming.
=====================================================================
Grade: B
=====================================================================
Comparable Shows
If you are interest in finding more shows like Queer as Folks then I recommend you watch one, some or all of the following shows: Dante's Cove, The L Word and/or Will & Grace.
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Up Next: If you like Beauty and the Beast, Grimm and/or Hannibal be sure to the blog out tomorrow, if not be sure to come back Monday, when I talk about the first season finale of ABC's Revenge.


Reign – 1.18 – No Exit – Review: Hell is other people.

‘Hell is other people.’


‘Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.’
― Helen Keller, The Open Door


Preface

Reign delivered another amazing episode. Am I right, Royals? But I guess it’s time to batten down the hatches and buckle up because the road looks a bit bumpy and the storm is rolling in…

I don’t do spoilers for Reign, so color me surprised when Mary’s half-brother (whom I mentioned in the History Lesson section of last week’s review) showed up in this episode. I’m really excited about the waters Reign is currently treading in. Romance every now and again is fine and dandy but really the main draw of this show for me personally is political intrigue and the dangers of French court. Oh, yeah and watching Mary rise to power over the course of her, ahem, reign.

This episode is the beginning of what looks like a very interesting arc for the relationship of Francis and Mary and their respective countries. The ending of this episode literally made my jaw drop and my Twitter timeline explode with Frary angst.

I’m hungry for next week’s installment but for now let’s discuss this week’s episode, shall we?
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Title: No Exit | Writer: Hannah Schneider | Director: Mike Rohl

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Long Story Short


Mary's half-brother James Stewart, Earl of Moray (Joe Doyle) arrives to tell her that the Scots are chafing under Marie de Guise's rule and advises her to return to Scotland. Mary wants to go immediately but Francis is reluctant. Francis discovers James' footman was paid by the English to kill Mary during her voyage so that James can be king. When Mary still insists on going, Francis locks her in the tower.

Catherine and Kenna work together, staging an intervention where a fake "Bishop" condemns Henry's sexual activities and scares Henry into humility and dismissing Penelope. When this succeeds, Catherine gives Penelope's estate and jewels to Kenna and Bash, who celebrate with a kiss.

Lola and Julien are married, but Lola starts to suspect that Julien has financial difficulties.

Nostradamus and Olivia have started a romantic relationship, but when Nostradamus has a vision of Olivia's death, he sends her away to Trinidad alone, knowing that Catherine will never let him go.
=====================================================================
Character Contemplations


Bash – He may not have any land or money but at least he’s young and handsome. I felt that Bash was a little too ‘wash, rinse and repeat’ in his actions this week. But instead of the king harassing her in his presence it was “Queen” Penelope. I do love Heroic!Bash and they certainly gave me plenty that but I’m actually more concerned with when he will go back to using his title ‘Master of Horse and Hunt’ and start being concerned with ‘The Darkness’ again. I love that Bash is trying to make the most of the situation and is slowly coming around to seeing past his initial “disgust” of Kenna. There is more than meets the eye when it comes to Kenna and I love that it is mostly through Bash’s eyes that we get to see this transformation. Toby and Torrance had a delightful scene together and I hope to see more of them together. The brother relationship is one of the best friendships on the show and the two actors have great chemistry together, they just need to keep developing it and really try not to dwell on the past because if they never brought up the prophecy and all the things that happened because of it, it would be too soon for me. It was a misstep so let’s course correct and move on. Fingers crossed for less love triangles (although it appears poor Bash seems to still be in one with his father, ick!) and more political intrigue, adventure and royal balls!

Catherine – Catherine was understated this week. She was silently brooding and plotting in the background while also managing to handle state affairs. Catherine has had a taste of true power by slowly sapping it away from Henry. And she is a Medici and we’ve learned they are a shrewd and ruthless lot. A queen consort doesn’t get to do much at least a French one. We learned pretty much right off the bat that she is resentful of Mary because she was quite literally born a queen, a real queen, with real power whom she could never control. I have to say the plot to get rid of Penelope was quite simple I was expecting it to be a bigger ordeal than what it was. But it seems as though Catherine might have Henry under thumb (which if you can muster that feat is right where you would want a king, no?). Henry is rather “mad” and now that Catherine has delivered him from that wretched wench Penelope he might be more open with Catherine and let her “help” him. So Henry is far from safe, Catherine still might get a wild her up her bum and have him killed so she can be her son’s queen regent. If I had to wager, I think that is the end game for Catherine at the moment. If she and Henry hadn’t pulled the stunt they did with the secret marriage contract I would be rooting for her to succeed. I wanted Catherine and Mary to bury the hatchet and be confidantes (though Catherine was cruel about the lesson she taught Mary last week, it was still valid nonetheless). But on the other hand, Catherine does need a foil. Maybe that foil will be Nostradamus now that she has denied him his one last chance at happiness. Man, come to think about it, Catherine is burning bridge all over the realm. Bummed that there could potentially be no more scheming with her and Nostradamus, they were adorable schemers together.

Francis – I will give credit where credit is due, Francis tried to put his wife first. He really did. But he’s certainly made a mess of his marriage. I love that he so vigorously tried to get to the bottom of the plot against Mary. I love that he loves Mary so fiercely that he would incur her wifely wrath and queenly wrath as well to protect her at all costs. Did I like the way he went about it no? Mary asked him to trust her and literally said no he couldn’t do that. No relationship can survive without trust. I’m eager to see what happens next with the Frary relationship.

Greer – Greer’s role for now is just the den mothers, which use to be Lola’s job. The title of den mother only comes with three minutes of screen time total and maybe a total of 7 lines if you’re lucky apparently. Literally, all Greer has done for the last two episodes is soothe all the baby chicks and look fabulous while doing it. I hate that Greer is the one who was disgraced the most because the relationship between her and Leith was the one I was rooting for to work somehow. I guess we will be getting more of Greer once Lord Castleroy returns from his business. Are they really going to have Greer marry Lord Castleroy?

Henry – What’s the matter with Henry? He is a king. He was obviously over Penelope but somehow she still had a hold on him. He is still openly and publicly sexually harassing Kenna who is now a married woman who is married to his son no less. But most importantly, he is still seeing visions of the boy from last week. He refers to the boy as a past sin. Someone left a great theory about the boy being Henry’s older brother who is was suspected was taken out by Catherine so he could be king and she his queen. I like that and it fits because Henry had an odd moment where he took off his crown because it itched. But I also like my theory that Henry has had bouts of madness before and the boy he is seeing is someone he killed. I’ve said it for the past three weeks now; I want Alan van Sprang to stick around for season 2 so if we just make him a crazy invalid that Catherine locks away and only comes to get his signature that will be fine by me.

Julien – Well, I guess Julien is just your run of the mill murderous con man. Charming and handsome as he maybe you just knew it couldn’t be that easy, which I’m actually happy about. I’m not saying I want Lola to be miserable or anything but her life shouldn’t be that easy. There should be consequences for her mistake and betrayal. I actually have no clue what will become of this plotline. Julien will either go to prison, he will die or he will run away.

Keena – – I love the evolution of Kenna, even it happened a little too fast. She too like Bash is trying to make the most of the forced marriage and is learning Bash is not half bad. Young, in possession of a title (no matter how silly or unimpressive), easy on the eyes and will at the very least always come to her defense no matter who is harasser are definitely good traits to have in a husband. She even managed to get the other half that he was missing, money and land so now he is pretty much set in her eyes. I think that Bash and Kenna make a pretty good couple, with her scheming and Bash’s heroic antics there’s a lot they can get accomplished together. I like that it was Kenna who initiated the kiss. I like that she kept the ring and told him that it made her feel safe. But she is seeing that Bash can put her first and stay away from Mary (now if only Henry could do the same when it comes to her).

Lola – At least Lola got to enjoy her special day and get some, what appeared to be nice morning sex before things started to fall apart. I love that Lola is suspicious and not being 100% swindled by Julien’s good looks, charm and willingness to help her out of a bad situation. I love that she didn’t transfer the money to his account. Lola is now the most up in the air character on the show. We’ve got 4 more episodes to go and anything could happen. I’m not sure what I want for Lola but I know it doesn’t involve Julien murdering her and/or the baby or having it revealed that she is carrying Francis’s child

Mary – Wow, locked in the tower by her husband! Did not see that coming. I think that Mary was a little naïve in trusting her half- brother so wholeheartedly. He was the one who led that rebellion of the Lords of the Congregation after all. But on the other hand he did advise after her return to Scotland and maybe even helped in the plot against her second husband. I want Mary to return to Scotland but mostly to take her mother out of power and to be treated like the queen she is. The best thing about this episode was watching Mary grow into her powers and put those diplomacy lessons to good use with that cardinal.

Nostradamus – Can that man have anything? Of course he wasn’t going to get to run away from France and live happily ever after with Olivia but they could have made it work if she stayed. Death (at least in TV and movies) has a way of coming back around. If it is your time to go then it’s your time. Nostradamus of all people should know that. You can’t delay the inevitable. But his life has been so tragic I can understand wanting to give the woman you love any amount of time that you can for her to be happy. My hope is that he can forgive Catherine and they can go back to being scheming besties, the sooner the better

Olivia – Bon Voyage! I liked what Olivia brought out in Nostradamus but she really wasn’t adding anything to the story. More than anything she was a distraction for Nostradamus. Now maybe he can get back to work on that ‘The Darkness’ thing and maybe just maybe get some new visions about Francis and/or Henry.

Penelope – Breathe a sigh of relief, Royals, “Queen” Penelope has been dethroned. At least she was smart enough to figure out that it was a trick but alas she is back in the kitchen where she

=====================================================================
Awards


Character of the Night
• Francis

Best Character Interactions
• Grand Prize – Bash & Francis
• Runner up – Bash & Kenna

Most Memorable Moment
• Bash gives Kenna his grandmother’s ring. (That boy sure is trying to make it work and I find that honorable)

Line of the Night
• Mary: More Frenchmen, to solve the problem of not enough Scots?

Scene of the Night
• "Queen" Penelope gets "dethroned".

Favorite lady-in-waiting
• Kenna

That Awkward Moment Award
• That awkward moment when

The ‘I Ship It Like FedEx’ Award
• You knew it was coming, it’s official, Kash is my new fun side ship (especially since Nostradamus & Olivia are over).

The ‘Ominous Foreshadowing’ Award
• Catherine: The land maybe soft and sweet but it is full of vipers.

Best Truth Bomb of the Night
• Mary: You fell in love with a girl, not a queen, otherwise you would let me be one.

The ‘Shots Fired’ Award
• Grand Prize – Kenna: I thought Diane de Poitiers came from money.
• Runner Up –
Cardinal Morosini (happily and excitedly to Mary): Your Grace.
Cardinal Morosini (bored and unenthused to Francis): Dauphin. (Yep, Francis, you are still just the little prince for now, deal with it)


Highlights


Memorable Moments
• Mary reminds Francis that she and her country are one in the same.
• Henry takes off his crown because it itches.
• Greer and Kenna roll their eyes and act huffy when they hear it Henry enter the room they’re in.
• Henry is still hallucinating about that boy from last week and has reached the rare stress level that requires one to curl up into ball and rock back and forth.
• Bash and Kenna kiss.


Laudable Lines

• Greer: The Master of Horse and Hunt may not have any lands but at least he is young and handsome.
• Greer (to Kenna) Try not to be bitter on Lola’s special day.
• Henry: The waiting is horrible. I love it.
• Francis: There is a Mary on this coin but not MY Mary.
• Francis: What happens when being a good king means being a bad husband?
Bash: It’s simple, be a bad king.


Superb Scenes

• Catherine and the fake bishop dethrone “Queen” Penelope
• Bash and Francis talk about what whether or not being a good king should trump being a good husband.
• Francis tries to put Mary first and tells her that they will leave for Scotland as soon as possible.
• Lola and the banker talk about whether or not she is ready to transfer her dowry into her husband’s account.
• Francis tortures James’s footman.
• Bash comes to Kenna’s defense when Penelope takes the wedding ring he gave her.


Lowlights


• Not nearly enough Greer (again).
• We didn’t get to see Penelope working in the kitchen back in her rags where she belongs.
• Nostradamus is now left all alone in his shackled servitude to a wicked queen.

Miscellaneous


Biggest Surprises of the Episode
• Nostradamus gets a vision about more death making it's way to the castle and it doesn't feature Francis or Henry, instead Olivia is the star of his vision.
• Penelope is ‘dethroned’ – I totally thought they were going to drag that out at least for one more episode.
• Francis locks Mary up in the tower to keep her from sailing to Scotland with her brother. - Wonder what the Royal equivalent of sleeping on the couch is because whatever that is, I have a feeling Francis is going to be doing that once Mary is released from the tower.

Style Spotlight: Another black and gold dress worn by Mary. That’s three times, which means it’s definitely a trend. That dress made Adelaide’s waist look insanely small, more tiny than usual.

Fun Fact: Joe Doyle is not the first person to play James Stewart. Patrick McGoohan played him in the 1971 film Mary, Queen of Scots.

Tasty Tidbit: It is reported that James was opposed to Mary’s second marriage to Lord Darnley.

History Lesson: They say that James Stewart was the most notable of the many illegitimate children of King James V of Scotland. His mother Lady Margaret Erskine was said to be the king’s favorite mistress.

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Grade: A
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Side Notes: I assumed that this episode took its title from the famous one act play of the same name that was written by Jean-Paul Sartre, it happens to be one of my favorite plays. The title in its original French can be translated to mean ‘in private’ ‘behind closed doors and was used as legal jargon.
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Friendly Reminders

Don’t forget to watch and live tweet with the show (@CWReign) & me (@lilithhellfire) every Thursday night at 9 pm EST.

Do Your Part

Royals, even though we have already been renewed for season 2, we still have to make every episode count for the rest of the season. If we don't we will get put in a death slot next season to wither away and die (see Beauty and the Beast if you don't believe me). It is very important to be stream the episodes. The biggest impact is to stream it directly off of The CW site. But Hulu counts as well. The biggest difference is definitely clicking the ads when you watch from a legit streaming site.

Also, even if you don't have Nielsen's box you can still help the ratings (a little) in your own way by live tweeting with show. You can pitch in by using the show's hashtag (#Reign) and the show's episode title in every tweet you make about the show on Thursdays. Prime tweeting hours to get the show trending are usually between 7 pm EST until about 1 am EST (after the west coast airing has gone off).

If you are Canadian and you’d like to help the show on the social media front, don’t live tweet on Wednesdays; do it on Thursdays instead with the US Royals. If you really have your heart set on trending, make sure not to over use the episode title in tweets prior to 7 pm EDT.

Also, pre-ordering the DVD/Blu-Ray and/or ordering season passes on iTunes are other ways that can show the network higher ups that this is and can continue to be a profitable endeavor.

Social Media Checklist:
• Have you liked Reign's official Facebook page?
• Do you make sure to visit the Facebook page at least once per week and leave comments and interact with other fans?
• Do you follow Reign's official Twitter account?
• Do you follow all of the show’s cast and crew that is on Twitter?
• Are you retweeting all relevant tweets from the cast and crew throughout the week?
• Do you live tweet with the show every Thursday using the show's hashtag (#Reign) as well as the episode tile hashtag between the hours of 7 PM EDT and 1 AM EDT?
• Are you checking in and leaving comments about the show on TV Tag?
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Well, now it's your turn to sound off in the comments section below. I look forward to reading your thoughts.

PS: Don't forget to promote this and all interesting Reign articles in all the social media you can. For instance be sure to click the like button, retweet this and +1 this article if you like it and appreciate this reviewer's hard work.

[Insert author box here]

Friday, April 18, 2014

Pretty Little Liars– 4.24 – A is for Answers – A to Z Challenge – Day 16


“I’m Coming Home...”


‘Questions are never indiscreet, answers sometimes are.’
- Oscar Wilde


Prologue

I’m a casual fan. The first season I was absolutely obsessed but as they diverted more and more from the books I just lost interest. But season 4 was the season where things started to come back together and we also promised some answers by season’s end so I checked in on the series and was delightfully surprised.

About the Show

Seasons: 4 | No. of Episodes: 95|Premiere Date: 06/08/2010 | End Date: N/A| Status: On-Air

Genre(s): Teen drama, Mystery, Thriller

Story in a nutshell: Set in the fictional town of Rosewood, Pennsylvania, the series follows the lives of Spencer Hastings (Troian Bellisario), Hanna Marin Ashley Benson), Emily Fields (Shay Mitchell), and Aria Montgomery (Lucy Hale), who are four girls whose clique falls apart after the disappearance of their queen bee, Alison DiLaurentis (Sasha Pieterse). One year later, they begin receiving messages from a mysterious figure using the name "A", who threatens to expose their secrets. At first, they think it's Alison herself, but after her body is found, the girls realize that someone else knows their secrets—including long-hidden ones they thought only Alison knew. "A" also stalked Alison, and the girls continue to discover more and more information about "A" and Alison's disappearance—all while risking their lives.

Best Reason to Watch the Show: If you read and liked the books it will still keeping you guessing as a sufficient amount of things have been changed; some for the better and others for the worse. Even if you haven’t read the books and just like a show with a good mystery then you might want to check it out.

The Best Thing about This Episode: We do actually get some answers.
======================================================================
Title: A is for Answers| Writer: I. Marlene King | Director: I. Marlene King

Episode Summary: Holbrook interrogates CeCe Drake who has been arrested for Wilden's murder. CeCe tries to strike a deal by providing proof that Ali is still alive.

Noel Kahn brings Aria, Emily, Hanna and Spencer to Ali's loft apartment above a coffee shop/bar. Ali appears and recounts the night of her disappearance from her perspective. The girls learned new information from Ali including that Ali copied Ian's videos from his laptop onto a USB stick during their weekend getaway in Hilton Head, Ali met Ezra in a bar near UPenn and convinced him that she and CeCe were college roommates, Ali used the N.A.T. Videos as a bargaining chip to blackmail Ian, and that one-by-one, Ali confronted all of her "A" suspects throughout the night. Ali confessed that she drugged the girls by dropping sleeping pills into the communal drinking cup in the barn - Spencer didn't fall asleep with the others because she was on amphetamines. Ali also explained that she went home thinking she had silenced "A" and saw her mother gasp from inside the house before she was hit on the head with a rock. Ali awoke to find her mother burying her.

Melissa returns from London to find her home being searched by police. Rosewood PD interrogates the Hastings family while searching for the whereabouts of the girls, still missing since the fundraiser. Melissa confesses to Peter that Spencer did not kill the girl buried in lieu of Ali and whispers something mysterious to him.

The police track the GPS of Spencer's car but do not find them in the dusty space in Philadelphia. "A" attacks the PLLs in the coffee shop. They run to the rooftop to escape. To their surprise, Ezra joins them. Ezra fights "A" and gets shot in the stomach. Hanna is able to gain control of "A's" gun but "A" escapes by jumping to the next building and does not take off the mask.

The PLLs are frantic when they discover Ezra's bullet wound. We pull back to reveal that they are not in Philadelphia but Manhattan.
Finally, Jessica's dead body is shown being dragged across a yard and someone, presumably "A," buries her.
======================================================================
Awards


Character of the Night
• Allison

Best Character Interactions
• The Liars & Allison

Most Memorable Moment
• Ezra get shots.

Best Line
• Hanna (to Ali) “I wanna hug you and slap you at the same time

Best Scene
• The flashbacks

That Awkward Moment Award
• That awkward moment when your mother is willing to let you die to protect someone else.


Miscellaneous


Favorite Main Character
• Emily

Least Favorite Main Character
• Spencer

Favorite Side Characters
• Jason & Paige

Least Favorite Side Character
• Melissa
======================================================================
Grade: B-
======================================================================
Comparable Shows
If you are interest in finding more shows like Pretty Little Liars then I recommend you watch one, some or all of the following shows: Gossip Girl, The Lying Game and/or The Nine Lives of Chloe King.
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Up Next: Tomorrow I will be discussing the pilot of Queer as Folks (US).