That’s One Secret I’ll Never Tell

I’m rewatching Gossip Girl, because I was thinking about it during my OC rewatch, and then I learned that it was the 10th anniversary of the show this week, so I had to.

I don’t make the rules.

When I started, it was interesting, because I compared rewatching The OC to comfort food. It’s sweats, and reheated home cooking, curled up on a lazy weekend.

Rewatching Gossip Girl has not been like that. It’s more like a bender. It’s like I settle in, think, “I’ll watch an episode or two” and then the next thing I know it’s 1 AM, and Jenny has had five different haircuts, and Serena killed a guy, and wait Nellie Yuki and Blair were once friends?

Gossip Girl reminicing is always an excercise in restraining word vomit. Or in my case “texting my sister and Crystan compulsively.” Also updating facebook.

I wound up taking this week off from the rewatch because I was so tired. (I invested instead in the much quieter and easy to doze off to West Wing The Goldbergs) also because pretty much every thing after season 3 is a train wreck and not the fun kind.

Seriously, if the show had ended with Blair and Serena jetting off to Europe, Jenny leaving Manhattan forever, Lilly choosing Rufus after William gave her fake cancer (A REAL PLOT POINT!) Nate doing, something? (Poor Nate, I love him, but he’s so useless) and Chuck gunned down in an alley as his penance for HAVING SEX WITH JENNY HUMPHREY! I would be satisfied.

I mean, probably not at the time, but now, in the long run.

But there are three more seasons. And I will watch them. After season 3 I drifted in and out of the show. I know I saw most of season 4, and most of season 6. I don’t think I watched season 5 at all? Revenge had happened by then and it was doing Gossip Girl way better than Gossip Girl at that point. Also, I was living with my Uncles and they are Pretty Little Liars people, so I was into that for a hot second.

But Gossip Girl remains the gold standard for me when it comes to heady teen drama. I realized that as I watched it again over the past few weeks.

I love One Tree Hill (obviously), and Dawson’s was my gateway drug, and it’s hard to beat the original Beverly Hill, 90210, and even it’s older sister The OC surpassed it in quality most of the time. But Gossip Girl is just so suck you, fall in love, break your heart because of something awful and stupid (DAN AND BLAIR! CHUCK AND JENNY SEX! ERIK LEAVING THE SHOW! VANESSA EXISTING!), repeat, that’s it’s always going to be number one in the genre. It’s the Chuck Bass of television shows, and I am Blair Waldorf. I’ll always come back to it because of the three words and eight letters.

Happy 10th Birthday Gossip Girl

You know we love you.

XOXO

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Game Of Thrones Winner: “Stormborn”

Two down, five to go. And we’ve got a pretty clear winner tonight.

Sansa Stark, is tonight’s winner of Game Of Thrones

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Finally, all of Sansa’s fighting with Jon paid off, and he put her in charge of The North while he heads to Dragonstone to go palaver with Dany. (OK…I’m bringing Dark Tower language into my Game Of Thrones recaps…my fandoms are touching and I’m too excited to care much.) Also, all of the Northern Lords are way more in line with her than they are with Jon, which isn’t great in the long run, but is good for her right now.

Runner up is Euron, because, I mean, it’s Euron. I’m not going to miss The Sand Snakes, but I am going to miss Yara. He gets the win, because that was a decisive victory, but it was brutal, and to quote Michael, “Euron is going to be a problem.” 

Missandei And Grey Worm Watch:

OMG! OMG! OMG! Before Grey Worm goes off to conquer Casterly Rock in Dany’s name, Missandei comes to say goodbye, and they confess their love, and then they kiss and then they have SEX! And it’s AWESOME! And I managed not to squee, but OMG! OMG! OMG! How does Grey Worm, who as we all know, does not have a dick, have sex with Missandei? He goes down on her. And it’s great, and I’m really, happy about this.

Sansa’s Agency Watch

She won this week. I’m worried in the long run about what that power is going to do to my girl, but I’m happy for her, and the agency, there is so much of it.

Arya Bad Ass Watch

Arya is slowly but surely becoming a person again, and it’s really a cool arc. This week she saw Hot Pie again, and they talked about how Jon is The King In The North now, and she decided to abandon her “Kill Cersei” quest and go home, UNTIL, she encounters Nymeria and her pack (OMG OMG OMG!) in the woods, and her wolf refuses to come with her. You aren’t yet a wolf again Arya.

Bran Stark’s Excellent Adventure

No Bran this week.

#NotAStark

This week, our King In The North, the last son of Ned Stark, who, lest we forget is #notastark, got two important letters, one from Sam, and one from Tyrion. The one from Tyrion was asking him to come to Dragonstone and meet Dany and then bone her…umm, OK, actually is was requesting he bend the knee. But whatever. The one from SAM, pointed out that there’s a giant mountain of dragonglass at Dragonstone. So, Jon’s off south with Davos. The Lords of The North are #notonboard, but he’s leaving Sansa in charge, so that should go well. (I do not anticipate this going well.)

Sam Is A Ravenclaw (Or Possibly A Hufflepuff)

Sam continues to feel useless at Hogwarts, but when he’s standing with the Archmaester, he does get to check out Jorah’s greyscale. Then he sears and cuts it off, and it is disgusting. But hey, Jorah, might not have greyscale anymore? So that’s a win! And Sam does all of this out of memory to Lord Commander Mormont, and comes very short of saying, “I’m a good person, and also your dad was THE SHIT, so you’re not dying of greyscale on my watch, Mr. Mopey Bear.”

How Long Til Jaime Snaps?

Oh, well, since Euron’s likely to sail back to King’s Landing with Ellaria Sand’s head? Which means Cersei will probably marry him? Not long now. Also, he was trying to convince Sam’s dad to fight for Cersei. He did not succeed. I don’t think he’ll be able to succeed in getting many allies for Cersei, since he barely believes in her himself anymore.

People Dany Should 100% Listen To

Olenna Tyrell and Varys. Also Jon. Tyrion had a good plan that did not calculate for Euron and Theon being a total weenie.

Has Little Finger Learned ANYTHING?

Nope. People might remember that once upon a time, Brandon Stark almost killed him in a duel for Cat’s hand. Then there was that time that Ned put him into a wall for hiding Cat in a brothel, and now Jon chokes him out and threatens to kill him if he touches Sansa.

Granted, he did outlive both Brandon and Ned, but still, like, don’t mess with their women, Baelish. It’ll get you beat up.

 

A Voice of A Generation

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In the very first episode of Girls Lena Dunham’s clueless Hannah tells her parents that she thinks she might be the voice of her generation.

The joke here obviously is that Hannah is in no way shape or form capable of such of thing. Nor is it possible to judge such a thing while it’s happening. But I was twenty four, I watched that pilot not long after running out of money and time, and moving from a windowless bedroom in a shared Brooklyn apartment back to the large, beautiful house that my parents built while I was in college. And something about the show felt vibrant and real, and close to who I was in that moment.

Girls taught me a lot over the past six years. Reading about and disecting it taught me even more. But the main lesson I got from the show, was that “representation matters.”

Now I’m not talking about the fact that Girls is problematic in it’s general diversity, I’m not talking about the fact that Dunham herself is a difficult personality to push past, because both of those things are true, I’m talking about the fact that I’d never seen something hit what my friends and I were going through in a specific moment so squarely as season 1 (and to a smaller degree season 3) of Girls did.

I am a rich white girl with artistic aspirations. (Though every character on this show refusing to get a day job always drove me absolutely bonkers) (Except Shosh. I mean obviously.) Girls is literally about people like me, and I’d never seen anything that was literally about people like me before. I’d related to characters and stories, but never had anything so specifically fitting my profile hit before.

Which brings me to representation. I never knew that I was missing representation until I saw that representation. And I want everyone to have that moment of recognition. To hear a character say something, even if that something is perverse and obtuse and disconnected from most of reality, that hits your reality so fricking perfectly that you will love that film, TV show, piece of music forever.

Cross identification in fiction is wonderful. It builds empathy and understanding and expands minds. I wouldn’t be the person I am, if I didn’t see parts of myself in characters that were nothing like me. But the sheer power of seeing someone so close to myself, even in four parts, as I did when I watched Girls is so overwhelming, so beautiful, such a call in the dark that “you are not alone,” that I want everyone to get that. Which is why I want to hear stories from all kinds of creators, and why I’ve been making a concerted effort to search out those stories in my life for the few years.

But I want to state for the record that Girls was what opened that window for me. I’d heard pleas for diversity before it, and understood, because I like stories from people who aren’t like me, but didn’t understand this need to see yourself on screen and in stories. Until I did, and it felt like magic. It felt like Lena Dunham, with her writing, and acting, as well as the acting of Allison Williams & Zosia Mament, (and to a lesser extent Jemima Kirke, because I don’t see a lot of myself in Jessa. Though I do see several of my friends) saw my heart, and suddenly the world was brighter.

Everyone should get that feeling, and Girls gave me that feeling, and I will miss it terribly now that it’s over. I’ll miss it the same way I miss the friends I had when the show started. A lot of those people are not in my life anymore, because adulthood is complicated.

Deconstructing Defenders: Daredevil: Season 2: Episodes 3 & 4

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Season 2: Episode 3: “New York’s Finest”

While Season 2 in total is no where near as effective as season 1, this episode is among the best in the entire Defenders run. Frank has Matt chained to a water tower on a roof, and they talk about heroism, murder, Matt says Franks name like seven million time, “Frank, you don’t have to Frank! FRANK DON’T!” And then, after getting out, Matt takes part in The Hallway Fight 2.0.

But that basic summary really doesn’t do the conversation justice, especially not when you take fandom into consideration. There’s an ongoing conversation in fandom circles, only magnified by a certain director on the other side of the fence, about whether Superheroes should kill. And here’s that conversation, in detail, by two characters basically on opposite sides of the spectrum. Daredevil doesn’t kill, and beats him self up mentally and spiritually when he thinks about the pain he inflicts. The Punisher kills first, asks questions later, or, for the most part not at all.

“You’re one bad day away from being me,” is such a chillingly true statement, and I love it so much.

The other part of this episode is Foggy following Claire around asking her to help him find Matt and her basically being like, “I like Matt, but he’s a pain in my ass, so I’m cutting a running,” which, I can’t blame her for, but also CLAIRE! DON’T GO!

Karen decides that justice can only be served by Karen Page being nosy, so she does that and finds an x-ray of Frank Castle’s skull, with a bullet lodged in it.

Season 2: Episode 4: “Penny And Dime”

This episode is not as good as the last one, but it’s still really good, and has that epic shot of Daredevil standing in the rain on top of a church, which is pretty damn great. It also, unfortunately has the stupid, Karen and Matt rain kiss which is just. UGHHHHHH.

Anyway, Matt manages to corner Frank and Frank tells the amazing story of coming home from war to find his daughter in school. It’s heartbreaking and beautiful and awesome and I love everything about the scene, from Matt, sitting on the ground beside him, to the explanation of “one batch, two batch, penny and dime,” to now Sergeant Brett Mahoney apprehending The Punisher. YAY!

Matt, Foggy and Karen celebrate with beers and shots, and then Matt and Karen make out in the rain, but their chaste happy joy is short lived, as Matt gets home and Electra is sitting in his apartment, ready to throw things at him.

Other Stuff

  • Jon Beranthal can deliver a speech. That is all
  • Rosario Dawson is the best. That is also all.
  • I’m mean about Karen’s snooping, but it is actually well done, I just hate the relationship between Matt and Karen and wish that it didn’t happen. And her finding Frank’s house is really a cool moment.
  • Matt trying to get his priest to forgive him for shit that’s not his fault is both very sad and hilarious.
  • The Irish mobsters kill Frank’s dog, because apparently these men have not seen John Wick. Which is a shame because killing an unstoppable killers dog. Also, because John Wick is a great movie.
  • Guys! ELECTRA’S HERE!!!!

Deconstucting Defenders: Daredevil Season 1: Episodes 11 & 12

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We’re nearing the end of Season 1, and I’m very glad that I made this decision, even if I sometimes sort of forget to watch  the show. Anyway, let’s talk about this week’s episodes!

Episode 11: “The Path of The Righteous”

So Karen kills a guy. I feel like this is an action that doesn’t really get enough consequence. I mean, it’s not even like she kills a random ninja or a henchman or something. She kills Wesley, who’s Fisk’s right hand man and only friend, and she shoots him the face. Maybe they’ll finally address it on The Punisher, but it really doesn’t get adequate follow in the following two episodes or in season 2 that I can remember.

Anyway, other things happen in this episode, like Foggy sleeps with stupid ex Marcy. (Ew) and Matt and Claire have a talk about their what could have been. (SHIP IT SO HARD I HURT INSIDE) and Matt talks to his priest about the nature of The Devil some more, and Fisk weeps at Vanessa’s bedside and Owlsley makes it about himself and Ben gives Karen some advice and oh yeah, Karen kills Wesley.

Oh, also Matt meets Milton, who’s the suit making guy, and asks him to make him a suit that’s a symbol, of some kind. And my heart skipped a beat, because guys, I really love the Daredevil suit.

Anyway, on to that thing where KAREN KILLS WESLEY!!!! It’s a really, really good scene. The acting is probably the best that Deborah Ann Wohl does in the whole series.

Episode 12: “The Ones We Leave Behind”

The death of Ben Urich is something that I’m not sure the show ever will recover from. Losing him as a grounding character loses a lot, and while it’s an understandable story beat, and even a really good mirror to the death of Wesley in the previous episode (both deaths are deeply personal, neither calculated and leave gaping holes on each team.) And while Ben’s final sacrifice for the truth is a noble one, it still feels like a weird and unecessary loose end. Not to mention, this is basically the last time that Karen deals with the fact that she shot a guy.

Fisk meanwhile is scrambling without Wesley and with Vanessa in the hospital and with needing to get his mother to safety. This is exactly how Matt wants him, discombobulated and all, but it’s also a dangerous position to put everyone else in. Matt manages to set fire to Madame Gao’s heroin operation and Owlsley reveals that the cause of Vanessa’s poisoning is himself and Gao together.

Overall, while there’s plenty of emotion in this episode, there isn’t much plot. These episodes both move key parts into place for the finale, but nothing much else goes on. *shrug*

Other Stuff

  • Foggy’s reunion with Bitchy Ex

Otherwise Occupied

Hi everyone! Since I started my new job I’ve been, well, just not super into blogging, I have ideas, on top of ideas, but just haven’t felt much like putting them down. I’m doing my best to get organized, and it’s not like I’m not obsessing. (Holy Cow, Star Wars: Rebels! Am I ever obsessed!) Just, forming it into something, is proving difficult. I’m hoping that in the next few days I get it a little more together for you guys.

I’ll do my best.

But meanwhile, seriously holy crap, Star Wars: Rebels!

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That’s Sabine, and she’s my new fave forever.

Or until I find something else to be obsessed with.

Team Jess & Other Stars Hollow Hopes

The trailer for the Netflix Revival of Gilmore Girls dropped this week. The revival will take 4 “movies” at about an hour and a half each, and trace the lives of Rory & Lorelai (And Emily, Luke, and everyone else.) over the course of a year, each season being represented.

The show is dropping the Friday after Thanksgiving (brilliant!) and I’ve already vowed to slow my binge roll on it, so that my mom, my sister and I can all watch together. Preferably curled on the couch with big mugs of hot chocolate and baggy sweaters. (This is unlikely to happen. Knowing us it will be old yoga pants and red wine. Also fab, but you know, a girl can dream).

And now I warn you. I generally don’t engage in ship wars (despite being a shipping garbage person) but this is different. I fight in this army, I am always and forever Team Jess. I know teams aren’t really the thing in shipping anymore, now it’s the amalgam names, but this is old school, and it’s always going to be Team Jess.

Now, I’m not saying that Jess and Rory’s relationship was good. It was a trash fire. He was mean to her, she unfairly compared him to Dean at every turn, and their breakup that wasn’t really a break up, his numerous returns and obviously the greatest moment in the entire show.

I’m speaking of course about when Jess comes to see Rory while she’s living with Richard and Emily and asks her why she’s flushing her life down the toilet, specifically the line, “You dropped out of Yale? WHY DID YOU DROP OUT OF YALE?” which is my second favorite Milo Ventimiglia performance. (It was recently dropped from the top spot by this week’s This Is Us, when Jack told Rebecca, “Between you and the kids, it’s you, every time.” Behind it, is the moment when Peter meets Claire in the hallway of her high school during season 1 of Heroes, and the moment on American Dreams where Chris apologizes to Meg for making light of JJ’s stint in Vietnam.).

Anyway, we catch glimpses of Dean (WOOORRRRRSSSSTTTTT) and Logan (Ehh) in the trailer, but only Jess gets to talk. I think this is important. These two always got each other, and that’s why they belong together. I want them to be together. I want it so badly.

Other Thoughts About All Of This:

  • I want to know what the Lorelais think of Ryan Murphy
  • I am in no way prepared for the death of Richard Gilmore, I am in complete denial about it.
  • I’m diving back into Gilmore Guys, and have gotten well into season 6. These episodes are long. And that’s just for 45 minute old episodes.
  • I’m curious what Logan’s up to these days.
  • Paris is not in this trailer. This is not OK.
  • Luke and Lorelai are together. THANK GOD!
  • Christopher is also not in this trailer. I’m more OK with that.
  • We’re only a few weeks away from this.