Game Of Thrones Winner: “Hardhome”

As this episode finished I said, to my siblings and Joe, simply, “Picking winners has been hard this year because no one is really winning much of anything.”

Mike said Jon should probably get this week, due to killing the ever loving crap out of that white walker, but Jon’s already won a whole bunch.

Then we thought maybe Sansa for her whole Reek confrontation but that didn’t feel right either.

Instead, we finally landed on Tyrion.

YAY!!!

YAY!!!

 

Who managed to convince Daneyrys not only should she not kill him for being a Lannister, but that he’s definitely, definitely worth listening too. Also she reveals her plan to basically just crush the great houses under foot and raise up the common people.

Dany and The High Sparrow are gonna get along great, you guys. Except for that as a Valyrian, I’m pretty sure Dany doesn’t have much to do with the faith of the seven.

But anyway, yay Tyrion! All I could think during this scene was, “Damn, poor John Slattery!” (I should note I do not ever actually feel bad for John Slattery, who got to help create one of the greatest characters in the history of television. But the Emmy is his to lose this year, and Dinklage is being given killer material.) It was a remarkable scene beautifully performed.

So, Lord Tyrion Lannister, The Imp, Once The Hand of The King, now probably Hand of The Queen (let’s be honest here) Congrats on Tonight’s win.

Runner Up Goes to Jon. Because he killed a white walker mid battle and we learned that Valyrian Steel can kill them because dragon fire is the answer to every problem in Westeros, except maybe for, “how do we keep the dragons from lighting things on fire.”

Missandei and Grey Worm Watch

No action. But we did see Missandei standing at her usual place behind Dany. Hi Missandei! We missed you!

Sansa Agency Watch

Hey! Sansa did a thing. She’s not sitting in bed feeling sorry for herself anymore. She’s dressed. She confronted Theon/Reek about betraying her to Ramsay and you know that whole destroying her family thing. She got him to tell her that Bran and Rickon are alive. This was a big week for Sansa’s agency. Now we just need Brienne to kill Ramsay a whole lot.

Just all the killing.

(I saw Mad Max: Fury Road yesterday…I feel like Furiosa and Brienne would get a long well…also Dany. WE ARE NOT THINGS!)

Keeping The Faith: Faith, Romantic Comedy & Anna Riley

Keeping The Faith

Last night my mom and I watched Keeping The Faith, a movie I have absolutely seen multiple times. (Possibly more than 20? It used to be on cable a lot, and it was, believe it or not a sleepover staple for my friends and me. We were weird youth group comedy nerds, it hit many of our sweet spots!)

If you’re unfamiliar with the film, it’s worth a watch. In it, a priest, played by Edward Norton and a rabbi, played by Ben Stiller, both fall in love with their childhood friend, played by Jenna Elfman.

The movie is a little all over the place, sometimes being a standard rom com. After all, Elfman’s character, Anna, is a high powered executive, who learns to let go a little bit, because of her relationship with Jake. (Stiller). And the love triangle plot could be totally played out.

But the faith aspect sets Keeping The Faith apart. Jake and Anna’s relationship isn’t complicated by her work, and her desire to further her career. She doesn’t see a problem with scaling back on her work to make a relationship work. She’s achieved wonderful things and will continue to, but she’s ready to explore a new path.

The complication comes because Anna isn’t Jewish, and as a rabbi, Jake can’t really commit to a gentile woman, lest he alienate his family and his congregation.

Also, Brian (Norton), who as a Catholic priest, can’t pursue his feelings for his friend ads another layer of interest to this otherwise trite story.

So we get two men, at a loss for where to go with regards to this woman. Which is a really big switch when it comes to romantic comedy.

And why more romantic comedies need female leads like Anna. Anna is not conflicted. She knows what she wants, and she’s willing to make sacrifices, though not change who she is, in order to pursue it. When Brian confesses his feelings to her, she rebuffs him immediately and lets him know that, aside from the fact she isn’t interested in him, she could never ask him to give up his vocation for her.

I’ve just forgotten what a lovely little movie it was, and while the faith themes always resonated with me, as did the vocational questions, it wasn’t until this viewing that I realized how interesting, nuanced, and different a character Anna is.

And this is in no small way due to Jenna Elfman’s performance, which is delightful. In the hands of a lesser comedic actress Anna could have become a cliche, or been cloying, but instead she’s charming and warm and kind of a delight. Romantic comedies have died a slow and agonizing death over the past ten years. And, although indie cinema seems to have picked up the slack, but I could do without all of the irony involved in those movies.

If more romantic comedy heroines felt like Anna Riley, I don’t think things would have gone down in flames so hard and fast. She’s a person, with feelings and layers and it’s something that should be celebrated.

Keeping The Faith is worth revisiting, although there are elements that instantly date it. The soundtrack is heavily 99-00 in feel, and the constant bafflement by Anna’s use of her cell phone is another oddity, but it also has a finale where Edward Norton sings a karaoke rendition of “Ready To Take A Chance Again.”

So worth your time. Because of religion. And feminism! And romantic comedy! (I so very rarely get to have those three things all together!)

Sailor Moon Check In: Early! For Once!

Hey everyone. Shaking up the order of things, because, well, I feel like after this week’s Game of Thrones, we all needed a nice big shot of girl power. (Not That KP doesn’t have that in spades, it’s just not quite the same breed as Sailor Moon, so here we are.)

Sailor Moon

Manga

Still no! Surprisingly not a lot of manga at the convention this weekend…

Best Cartoon Ever Sorry Korra (AKA Sailor Moon: S)

I love this show so much. Just so much. It’s so wonderful. We finally get some plot movement this week.

Who knew how important Chibi-Usa was you guys? I mean…back when I was all “Denying that we share a name” and what not, I didn’t know how important and great she was to the story back then. (And also Rini is not her name, or frankly, mine.) Anyway, let’s talk about the episodes. We saw Haruka’s back story which was awesome and great. And so pretty and hey! Neptune and Uranus half transformation sequences. So pretty.

Also there was a whole think with Makoto and being worried about her powers. Or something. Mostly, I loved that that episode was all about the magical powers of Haruka and Michiru and how everyone is just super attracted to them. It’s fun.

Also, we finally know that the “talismans” that everyone’s been chattering about are three sacred items that lead to The Holy Grail.

Which, honestly? If Indiana Jones was looking for a darling pink cup with angel wings and hearts all over it, Last Crusade would have been a very different movie.

Also Chibi-Usa now has a boyfriend and he’s adorable, but he at first had a crush on Michiru, because of course he did.

Crystal

This episode was a lot more fun that it should have been, but mostly because Venus’s little, “WHY CAN’T I DO THE THINGS?” hissy fit was adorable and there was some decent action, mostly revolving around Usagi finally getting her poop together and transforming, in spite of all the malefic black energy around and Demande still being super gross and rapey and whatnot.

Also Chibi-Usa is now Dark Lady and Mamoru is all encased in a bubble, presumably being conditioned to make out with her and what not. because gross.

I think I know why the Black Moon Arc always seemed off to me. It screams of imperialistic grossness. I think Demande and his ilk were on Nemesis previous to Wise Man, Death Phantom, whatever you want to call him, being banished there by Neo Queen dumby face right? It’s like Crystal Kingdom Australia? And they’re like the Aboriginal peoples? And then he manipulated them and also Serenity was shitty to them?

You get what I’m saying. NO ONE IS RIGHT HERE! Except Pluto, who is in the “beautiful cinamon roll too good for this world” camp.

Other Stuff

I bought a Sailor Mars Plush, because look how cute she is!

Mars

So cute!

 

I spent more money than I’m proud of on her, but she’s just really cute. Also I saw a group of girls as the Babs Tarr Biker Scouts, which was very fun!

Things I’m Obsessed With Right Now: Strong Ladies Edition

Hey Everyone! I’m going through a couple of obsessions lately, and most of them are lady type people and feminism related, and thus let’s begin.

  • The new season of Veep. God, could this show get any better? Amy’s freak out at Selina was incredible last week and the fact that Selina is the most ineffective president ever is particularly awesome. If you haven’t watched Veep, I recommend it. It’s funny, smart and altogether brilliant. (Not to mention Bechdel-busting, and great at the numbers game.)
  • Agent Carter got renewed! Hooray! Let’s all happy dance.
  • NYCC tickets and acquiring them. (Not feminism related exactly, but still annoying) Look, I’m not the only one of my friends to get shut out. It’s a decent mix of people who got some and who didn’t. Hoping to hit the jackpot at Special Edition and if not, it’s Stub Hub for me!
  • The ACLU inquiry into hiring practices in Hollywood at as related to sexism. Can we get a Boo-Ya!
  • Sailor Moon…going over six months strong on the obsessions list. You’re about to hit the Batman mark my friend. Congratulations.
  • Jen Lancaster, I reflected on her work and what it meant to me last week, but now I’ve been making my way through her books again. This happens pretty much every year. But I felt it was worth noting.
  • The Indoor Kids podcast. Oh my God. I love this podcast. I’m behind on everything because I’ve been listening through old episodes but it’s so worth it. It’s hosted by Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani, and they’re adorable. Emily is everything I love about the women I’ve encountered as I’ve traveled through the oceans of nerd culture. She’s feminist, she’s sex positive, she’s intelligent, she’s passionate about games. I’m completely obsessed with it. You should listen to it.
  • The adding of more female characters to Silicon Valley.
  • Hey! Pitch Perfect 2 tonight. I’m not like, super psyched about it. I think it’s a wholey unnecessary bit of movie, but I’m just excited that another Bechdel Buster is getting an ridiculous unnecessary sequel.
  • Ava Duvernay is in talks to direct either Black Panther or Captain Marvel. I will take either, but I’d rather see Black Panther, not because I want her pigeon holed, but because she directed Selma and thus has strong working relationships with most of the best black actors in Hollywood, and that will be a useful network for Black Panther.
  • Oh right, and the Supergirl sneak peak? How AMAZING IS THAT? This show looks perfect. I’ve always wanted The Devil Wears Prada but with powers. If it sounds like I’m being sarcastic, I absolutely am not. Seriously, I’m all packed for this weekend and seriously considering changing up and doing Supergirl instead of Black Canary, it’s that good.

So that’s what’s going on with me. How are you guys?

Here’s The Sitch: Kim Possible Season 2: Episodes 24 & 25

It’s taken a bit of work, but I really am getting close to being back on schedule. (My latest obsession is not helping, but it’s OK.) Every week when I go to watch Kim Possible, I start wondering why I’m doing this, and then I watch the episodes and I remember it’s because, I really do love this show. I love it so much, and this week’s episodes are not exceptions, at all. They are unbelievably stellar.

Kim Ron Rufus

Season 2: Episode 24: “Oh Boyz”

Senor Senior Senior wants to give Junior a doomsday device for his birthday. Junior is uninterested and only wants to be an international pop sensation. Senior decides that he can totally make this happen, there are easy ways, but he’s going to prefer the evil way.

Kim, Monique and all the other girls at school are wildly obsessed with The Oh Boyz, who are a fantastic boy band, and after a week when the mania fades, Ron has jumped on the bandwagon. Kim and Ron head to an Oh Boyz show, which is completely abandoned.

The guys themselves have been displaying ridiculous Diva behavior, driving their manager crazy and Ron sneaks backstage, determined to show the group his rockin dance moves. They do not care and are mostly annoyed by him. During the show (for just Kim? The empty stadium gag is sort of fun but doesn’t quite have legs), they’re kidnapped by the seniors, who accidentally nab Ron.

Kim tracks them down, but the guys have basically already saved themselves with the power of music and friendship, and Ron is now hugely popular due to his involvement with the Oh Boyz…so there’s that.

Season 2: Episode 25A: “Sick Day”

Half sized episodes are almost always a delight. In this little adventure, Kim must protect a top secret super powerful Ray X from Shego and Drakken, while the whole group (Tweebs, Kim, Shego & Ron) pass a cold around.

Drakken’s plan to steal the ray as Kim sneezes is ingenious, and the Tweebs mitigating their guilt for giving Kim a cold in the first place by going out on mission on their own is really cute. (And that they get captured by Drakken’s temp is also a great deal of fun.)

Season 2: Episode 25B: “The Truth Hurts”

Another Drakken super ray! This time it’s zapped victims are required to tell the truth. This winds up being a huge problem for Kim, who blurts out a lot of problematic things, and a boon for Ron, who’s new found honesty makes him a school hero.

I’d say there’s some kind of comment about gender politics, and women’s honesty being a “problem” and men’s being, “brave,” and I’m sure the show is making that point, but mostly it’s just good old fashioned slapsticky fun.

Boo-Yas & Nacos

  • The Oh Boyz are a perfect boy band send up. One member is named “Nicky-Nick,” which, I mean, come on. He also happens to be voiced by Joey Fatone, and “Robby” is voiced by Lance Bass. Who, if you are unaware were members of NSYNC, who, if you don’t know, spawned Justin Timberlake. Also, the snippets of Oh Boyz videos for “Hello, Hello, Hello” and “My Way” are only marginally more ridiculous than actual boy band videos.
  • The Oh Boyz are such a difficulty and maintaining them costs so much money, that their manager decides life is better with them as the Seniors prisoner. This is a very dark and very funny joke. Also, the manager is voiced by David Cassidy, which is both great, and hilarious. (If you’ve never watched The Partridge Family I recommend it. Ridiculous fun.)
  • In the end Junior gets his dream, performing Oh Boyz songs for villains in prison. Shego, Drakken, Monkey Fist and Killigan are appalled, his father is very proud and DNAmy seems sorta into it.
  • I really, really love the Ray X stealing scene, it’s brilliantly done and so much fun to watch.
  • Ray X actually cures the common cold. The Irony is lost on no one, but Ron really hates it.
  • Kim’s honesty becomes a real problem when she spills the unfiltered truth to her father’s bosses at the lab. But when it’s revealed that she rescued the head of the lab, it winds up being a boon.
  • I’m serious about the boy/girl honesty divide, I think there’s something there.
  • Hey, Will Friedle is on Girl Meets World this week. I’m going to be at Atlantic City Boardwalk Con, but I’ll do my best to watch the DVR’d episode and report on Eric’s return.

And I Get It Now: Jamie Fraser Edition

The last few days have been a frenzy of making sure I didn’t have anything backed up in my DVR so that tonight and most of Saturday could be dedicated to Daredevil. (I know I’ve been pushing my Ultron excitement but I’m incredibly excited for Daredevil, and I can almost guarantee that I’ll have little to no focus at work today, because I’ll just be thinking about the 13 or so hours of gritty violent superhero action that await me.) So obviously, I got around to watching the mid season premier of Outlander.

Here’s what I love about Outlander. It doesn’t really weigh on me much. I love watching it. It’s sumptuously beautiful to look at, feminist in perspective and full historical intrigues and really fun sexy times. But it’s pretty much a case of, “oh right, Outlander’s in my DVR, guess I should watch it at some point.” It’s not a counting down the days kind of show for me.

And I’ve read the first book, and about half of Dragonfly in Amber, but it wasn’t until watching Jamie resist a chemise-less Laoghaire and then kneel before Claire and swear his life to her saying that “she’s his home now,” that I totally got why so many fangirls are into him. I mean, there is literally nothing sexier than that.

And then of course, he and Claire had super hot female gaze sex next to a fire, because Outlander is awesome that way.

And then he was all adorable and puppy and asking her what “fucking” and “sadist” meant, and I wanted to hug him and teach him about cursing too. Because he’s adorable.

So it took one and a half books and half a season, but I am on the Jamie train. Which is weird because also one of my least favorite and absolute worst Jamie moments was in this episode, when he beats Claire. The show, (smartly) cuts away from the scene which in the books plays out in excruciating detail. It’s easier to be on his side when you don’t see what went on there.

Anyway, I’m just letting Outlander fans that I totally get it. I get it so much.

But now I’m going to watch Daredevil. I actually have a really fun post planned for it. (Won’t go up until next Thursday, due to Game Of Thrones, KP and MCU goodness taking up the rest of the week.)

Also, I love how this post was nominally about Outlander, but turned out being just how excited I am for Daredevil. Seriously, it’s the only thing I can think about. I almost said, “Happy Daredevil day!” when I got my coffee this morning.

It’s kind of a problem.

Delicate But Potent

 

Mad Men is going into it’s final season this weekend. I’m kind of in denial about it.

There’s an ongoing debate in my house about whether Mad Men or Breaking Bad is the greatest television show of all time. I’m on the Mad Men side and there are dozens of reasons, but it’s mostly because, while I really enjoyed the ride of Breaking Bad, I’ve never once felt the need to revisit it. Granted, it’s only been a year, but still.

I’ve watched Mad Men in it’s entirety 3 times, and I’m sure I’ll watch it again. I plan on watching Rolling Stone’s “Top 30 Episodes” this weekend, because, well, why not, right? There’s a good chance that will lead to a full rewatch.

I’ll probably reflect on the show in a more cogent way in seven weeks, but for now, I keep thinking about how this show is ending.

About how it was the first show I got from Netflix. (Back when I got actual DVDs from Netflix.) About how I watched it at the behest of my women’s study professors, and couldn’t believe the level of detail, the time taken with the characters, how engrossed I was in it, how disgusted, how immersed.

I couldn’t believe how well this show played The Numbers Game, as I called it. There were so many different kind of women here. Hell, there were distinct characters inside of each type of woman. Betty and Trudy were both housewives, but they weren’t at all alike. Joan and Peggy both had careers but their lives didn’t look the same.

Every season Mad Men has snuck up on me. Every season I think, it won’t be as good, as interesting, as funny, as stylish, and it always, always is.

And I’m curious how it’s going to wrap up. I don’t think there’s going to be an ending, per se. Mad Men isn’t that kind of show. But there’ll be something. Mad Men is like a novel, it’s not going to end with something big. It’s a story of moments. It’s going to end on a moment, a quiet, small moment.