Twin Peaks (Season 1 & 2) : Review

You go into Twin Peaks expecting weirdness but nothing prepares you for the  downright absurdity that unravels. Twin Peaks takes everything you expect out of a normal television program and turns it on its head. This show is heralded by its community of cult followers and shunned by many critics. Of course, Twin Peaks probably deserves some of these polarizing opinions. Yet no one could have anticipated the scope of Mark Frost and David Lynch’s vision.

Twin Peaks is a show with an ever expanding universe that encapsulates film, books, and even the auditory medium with it’s Grammy nominated “Diane…” tapes. I won’t even get started on how good the musical score is in Twin Peaks.  It’s not a show you can just sit down and jump into during your leisure.  Frost and Lynch make it their job to not let many details get by them in the show. Seemingly irrelevant trivialities that are overlooked by the characters in the show and the audience come back into play later on, sometimes with major implications.

This show wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for Kyle MacLachlan. From the very start, in the critically acclaimed pilot, MacLachlan sets the tone for the eccentric, loving, and superbly charming Dale Cooper. His incredible portrayal of the investigating FBI agent could have held this show up on its own but he is accompanied by an ensemble cast and a list of recurring guest that are just as well acted and well cast. The story of Twin Peaks is hard to exactly summarize without it sounding practically ridiculous but the plot has symbolism and overarching themes that prevail throughout with great effect. Subplots are very much essential and well written to the point where I couldn’t wait to see what was happening at the Diner with Ed and Norma.

Some may say that Twin Peaks  is a show that is being weird for the sake of being weird but I think they should try giving it another chance. Twin peaks is a show that really proves itself every episode.  The season two finale left many things open and questions unanswered but that is all soon to change due to its impending revival. The fact that the renewal date of the show directly relates to the finale shows great promise for the continuity of the series.

I propose at least trying out Twin Peaks. I’m sure you’ll be hooked from the pilot alone and every episode wonder what exactly did you get yourself into. But god damn you won’t be able to pull yourself away. Twin Peaks is a show which is discussed and interpreted fervently by its viewers and community and you need to check it out immediately. Two Cooper thumbs way up!

American Horror Story: The Replacements | Review

It’s becoming very clear why American Horror story has been getting its record ratings, since the show premiered this fall. This week’s episode has it all; incest, brutal scenes of violence, bestiality, and betrayal. Ryan Murphy is showing he isn’t afraid to tackle some controversial topics. Things are beginning to heat up in the coven as the girls are becoming more in tuned with their powers.

One of the interesting prospects of the previous episode of AHS was Cordelia’s fertility issues. Cordelia had already tried everything from natural remedies to black magic rituals. This led to Cordelia resorting to asking for help from her rival tribe. The show gave us a glimpse at the ritual she would have to perform with Tibitia- the leader the rival clan. Cinematography of the Tibitia ritual was a treat to watch.  The camera work throughout this show is unique because it is constantly changing. Overhead cameras, gold fish eyed views, close ups, slanted angles, and other dynamic camera techniques give the viewer a wide and varied perspective of whats going on.

Much like the  last season on AHS, ,  Sarah Paulson plays another troubled and struggling character. Cordelia is dealt a very bad hand and must play it out to the end. She finds herself stuck in between a feud between Tibitia and Fiona . Her goal of bearing a child is being challenged. Her performance is solid as usual. We’re looking forward to seeing more from her in the upcoming episodes.

Meanwhile, Madame Lalaurie must deal with adapting with modern day society and facing her past demons. This all offers some much needed comedic relief. Since the premiere of the show there has been a drastic role reversal for her character. We’ve seen her ability to portray a sadist and now we are seeing how she can easily meld into a more tortured character.

Kyle has more air time this week. Evan Peters manages to show some emotion playing Kyle, even though he’s a mute Frankenstein. Zoe Benson must deal with the resurrection of Kyle and his emergence back into society. This proves to be quite difficult. I hope Kyle regains his humanity because the way he is now is pretty difficult to imagine where the story will leave him. Misty Day also has an appearance which is welcoming. I always smile when I see her character. I don’t know why I like her so much. I think it because she really conveys a carefree soul, even through all the things she’s been through.

Jessica Lange, is superb as usual. Too be blunt she is this show. She really takes demand of the screen. Lange takes on her character Fiona’s flaws and strengths and transforms them into an acting spectacle. Fiona battles with her mortality and becomes a surprise mentor for the ladies of the house. The episode ends on a note which will probably upset some.

Overall, this episode was supreme…(See what I did there?)

9.5/10

What did you think?

Homeland Season 3: Episode 4|Review

In this week’s episode of Homeland, many events have taken place that kept me on the edge of my seat. Carrie has been in a mental institution for quite some time now. It’s easy to relate to her after you see how the how hospital changes people after being iinstitutionalized for too long.  |SPOILERS|The episode begins with Carrie being kept awake by another patient refusing medication and being forcefully sedated in her bed by a group of orderlies. Later on in the episode, the importance of this scene is brought to life when Carrie walks by that patient in the hall. The patient is in a wheelchair now and his heavily medicated to the point of comatose.

Her frustrations become more real after being denied discharge in front of the board committee despite being cleared by the staff as being mentally ready to leave the facility. You can feel the desperation  in her character when she realized that the agency is going to find ways to keep her there because they have classified her as a risk. After the hearing, she goes to her room and robotically takes the medication from the orderly and swallows it in frustration. This scene makes me wonder just how much can she take? How much longer can she be on lithium until she turns into that patient she saw in the hallway? Claire Danes continues to impress me with her acting ability.

Fortunately, in a change of events Carrie finds that she has been released by a court order. Her freedom is short lived when she finds who let her out . It’s the same guy who approached her before, who she suspects of working for a foreign country. She agrees with him on a sit down because the terms of her release turn out to be temporary unless she agrees on a meeting with this client. It turns out as she expected that the client did represent Iran and in order to stay out of the hospital she would have to divulge information on how their people were targeted. She refused at first to agree to being a traitor but In Carrie’s state of vulnerability, she changes her mind. It’s easy to sympathize with her change of mind. Why should she protect the same people that don’t care whether she rots in a hospital or not? The episode ended in plot twist that rattled my mind.

When she gets to Saul, It is revealed that everything is she has done up to this point has been to get a meeting with this client from Iran. Carrie endured so much to serve her country from character defamation to being institutionalized. The episode concludes with Carrie crying in Saul’s arms. This show reaches all new levels of espionage and solidifies my review score.

10/10

P.S- I need some Brody in my life. Looking forward to the next episode.

Dexter: ‘Make Your Own Kind Of Music’ Review

With only three episodes remaining, the end game is in sight for our favorite blood splatter analyst. It’s hard to say what exactly are the ingredients for a good episode of Dexter. The recipe has been changing gradually with the series finale approaching. With the introduction of Vogul this season we’ve seen a pretty subdued Dexter. The process of learning his origins and why he is the man he today, hasn’t exactly allowed the show to be filled with the usual bloodshed and butchery that Dexter is surely capable of.

It appears Dexter is preparing to sette down again . In a sense It was bound to happen. Last episode we saw glimpses of a Dexter finding a new purpose. A purpose in passing the legacy of his father’s code down to another person like him. He wasn’t the perfect mentor but things seemed to fall in line. Yet that story arc was disappointingly axed as we see Zach the young and impressionable disciple of Dexter’s life cut short. This week’s episode focused mainly on Dexter’s pursuit of Casey’s killer and the troubles of Hannah’s fugitive status.

The premise of Hannah hiding out from the law under Dexter’s protection is interesting.   Hannah brings up the idea of Argentina again; A fantasy she use to have where she flees from her problems and lives happily. Dexter and Hannah are forced to take a hard look at their future. They are cooped up in a hotel, evading the feds and authorities. She can’t even go to the store without the thought burning in the back of her mind that just the right person will recognize her and turn her in.  It Makes me wonder if Dexter is really thinking long term at all. That’s pretty much how his life would be if they decide to stay together.

Then you add Harrison into the equation and it complicates things exponentially. Even though their life probably wouldn’t be the same I think Harrison may be the wildcard in all of this. He actually has an attachment to Hannah and if Dexter sees this is really what he wants, they might just go all the way to Argentina. I’m a bit worried about Dexter. I think ultimately their plans to escape together will fail but what could actually happen if they do leave Miami. I always imagined Dexter ending on a somber and somewhat depressing note. Suicide, jail, gurgling in a pool of his own blood. Yes maybe that was a bit too dark but how else could all this realistically end?

Pros 

+ Harrison gets some screen time

+ Hannah and Dexter continuing to bond

+ Vogul and her familial connection possibly end up double teaming Dex

+ Debra considering rejoining the force

Cons 

Vogul is a being portrayed a bit too frail

The ending scene was a bit forced with Vogul

Overall a solid episode but was a bit predictable. Here is to hoping the Brain Surgeon can deliver the thrills in the final episodes.

 Score: 8/10

————————————————————————————————–

Second Opinion- By Shawn Perez

What I found really Interesting about this episode is the thin line of what is ethically right. Dexter is put in a dilemma where he has to apply his code to Vogul’s son. Previously, he gave Zach a second chance but he dislikes the idea when Vogul pleas for Dexter to allow her to get her son and put him in a facility to be rehabilitated. This is where Dexter’s justification of Harry’s Code becomes a little muddled. Do murderers deserve a second chance or at least rehabilitation?

Just when Dexter begins to show the more human side of himself; you start to question it because he doesn’t seem to be motivated to kill because they deserve it anymore but rather he’s just going back to his darker urges.This theme of darkness is hinted at when Vogul says to Dexter; if it was his son, Harrison he would do the same thing. Dexter agrees to silence her but he doesn’t really care. Where Dexter goes from here on out nobody knows. All we can do is wait in eager anticipation for the final episodes of the series.

Freaks and Geeks: Review

Freaks and Geeks is a show that had so much potential but it’s full potential was stunted when NBC cancelled the fan favorite. The show was too realistic and dark for primetime television in an era where shows like Dawson Creek and 7th Heaven reigned. The shows had an ensemble cast which consisted of many young actors who moved on to do big things. Some of the shows noticeable cast members included Linda Cardellini, James Franco, Seth Rogen, Jason Segal, and more.

Freaks-and-geeks-freaks-and-geeks-5953100-760-601

The show follows the story arc of two siblings in high school; Lindsay Weir and her little brother Sam Weir . Lindsay who up to this point in school has been the model honor roll student has begun to question her purpose in life and deviate from her expected role. She finds herself hanging out and relating with the “Freaks” of the school. While her brother Sam deals with the label of being known as a geek and trying to overcome the label.

tumblr_kp7u3haOh41qzjiplo1_400The show captures the angst of  being a teenager. It captures the “glory days” of self-discovery. It did a good job of redefining ideas of love and romance that young people dealt with. It also covered the theme of homosexuality.

It’s a shame the show went off the air. I didn’t know what to do with myself after I marathoned the whole season in the time span of about 4 days. I found myself trying to test out other TV shows that Judd Apotow was a part of but nothing came near to the feeling of Freaks and Geeks. It remains a timeless classic and I highly recommend it to you if you haven’t watched it yet.

tumblr_mrx122gvGD1sgp8h1o1_500

Review: Arrested Development Season 4

We’ve all been waiting in anticipation for Arrested Development new season of AD on Netflix. When I first started watching the show I couldn’t wait for the things that made this series so popular. The plot of the new season of Arrested Development was extremely wide in scope and complex. Maybe a bit too complex. In the previous seasons of Arrested development. Time was extremely constrained and you could see how they  tried to fit in every possible joke or comedic twist in almost every possible moment. This made the shows  story flow very erratically but it was done in a way where you were always on your toes. The new season followed a different episode design in which every episode was done focused around a specific character. This didn’t work as well as it should have leading to so very lopsided favoritism on my part for certain characters.

Focusing on one character is fine and dandy in trying to catch up the viewer to what has happened since the last season but it also brought to light that some characters just aren’t that funny on their own. What made AD so funny previously was the crazy interactions of every family member to each other. The story was very clever and intricate but ended in a very anticlimactic manner. Hurwitz might have done this to leave open the possibility for the AD film he always wanted to do. This season was definitely funny and certain characters still retain their charm and appeal. Michael, George Michael, Gob, Lucille 2, and George Oscar Bluth were my favorites but the other characters left me wanting more out of them. If you’re a fan of the series, you probably can’t resist watching the new season. I suggest doing it in moderation and not binging. The tempo of the show has slowed down and has allowed for some interesting changes to it’s form of comedy but the basic DNA of AD is still there. Lets all hope the movie is greenlit so AD can live on!

The Walking Dead ‘Made to Suffer’ Review

The Walking Dead is arguably one of the best shows on basic cable. Justifiably so, the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead is proof of this with more than 10.5 million people turning in to watch. Everything we could expect for a season finale, we received  from shocking character returns, new character arrivals, reunions, and action that rivals blockbuster movies.

On last week’s episode of the Walking Dead, Michonne teamed up with Rick to help the group  get back Glenn and Maggie. Milton and Andrea carried out a research experiment to try and understand a walker’s unconscious mind(the results are disappointing).Glenn and Maggie fail to hold out against the interrogations and intimidation of The Governor and Merle. They tell The Governor the location of the group’s camp and it’s members.

This revelation forces The Governor to keep secret; his torture of Glen and Maggie. The question is how long can he lie behind Andrea’s back? His vested romantic interest with Andrea lies on the verge of destruction. Rick and the group are planning on infiltrating the town and if Andrea finds out it’s most likely all but over for their relationship.

Spoiler Warning:

Rick and the group manage to sneak into the town but quickly, the town’s people start getting suspicious. A man walks into where they are hiding. They silence him and render him unconscious before he can alert the town.  This leaves them no closer to finding Glen and Maggie. Thankfully, just when they are out of ideas, a shot rings out revealing the way for them. The shot has come from Maggie and Glen’s failed attempt at trying to escape. Maggie manages to take out one of Merle’s men and gets a weapon off him but she is blindsided by another gunman behind her.

They follow the source of the gunshot and find that Glen and Maggie are being held captive. They proceed to pop flash and smoke grenades and retrieve Maggie and Glen from the  Merle and his stunned men. A shootout ensues as they escape from the building. Glen is hurt badly but straggles along the best he can with the group. Andrea, not wanting to take the sidelines in an attack, volunteers herself. The Governor turns her down and tries to pawn her off on a petty job of going house to house and calming down town residents.

Glenn and Maggie tell Daryl that Merle is alive and responsible for torturing them. Regardless, Daryl makes a stand on seeing his brother. Afterall, they are blood and he hasn’t seen him in ages. Daryl thought he was as good as dead when they left him on the roof. Rick convinces him that the group is too weak to get back on their own. He tells Daryl that he can come back at a later time. Daryl agrees for the time being.

They take the fight back to the street. Andrea ignores The Governor’s orders and helps the town defend themselves  She shoots at Oscar not knowing who he is . She is convinced by The Governor that they are just escaped prisoners. The longer they stay there; the worse their odds become of getting out successfully.  In the midst of the firefight, Rick sees a familiar figure appear from the smoke. It’s Shane! Before Rick can take it all in, Shane shoots and kills Oscar. Rick shoots Shane in the head and goes to check the body. It turns out to be just a hallucination.

I hope that Rick isn’t reverting back to his unstable self. Rick’s sanity might be questionable at this point. After the death of Lori, nothing has been the same for him. Many viewers can only think back on the episode where he had a conversation with Lori on the phone. Thankfully, Rick had the baby to help him through that hard time.

Back at the prison, Carl hears screams in the halls. It’s coming from a new group of survivors who escaped from the the forest. They didn’t escape unscathed though. One of them was bitten. They are led by a hammer-wielding man by the name of Tyrese. When Carl comes upon them, they are fighting off a group of zombies. They seem surprised to see a little boy come to their rescue. He leads them back to the safety of their cell block. He than decides to separate them from the group for the time being by locking them in a section of their cell block.

Around the same time, Michonne discovers The Governor’s daughter. She soon figures out that she isn’t human anymore and is ready to kill her. The Governor catches her in the act and pleads for her to spare his daughter. Michonne is hesitant but her strong stance against walkers leads to her killing his daughter. All the time invested in research that he and Milton went through was for nothing. He could never bring back his daughter now. I felt sorry for him despite his shortcomings. Michonne and him, get in a physical fight where Michonne barely escapes. She is confronted by Andrea in a standoff but Andrea let’s her go despite her anger.

Michonne meets back up with the group. They lost Daryl during the escape.  They don’t like the fact that she snuck off on them but they need her if they stand a chance getting back Daryl and getting back home. Daryl’s not in a good place right now. In his anger , The Governor has gathered the townspeople and has turned his back on Merle; Blaming him for bringing the outsiders to the town. He places Daryl and Merle, in the gladiator pit to decide their fate. It’s not quite the reunion that either of them were expecting.

Review Score: 9.7/10 (Television At It’s Finest)

Extra Rant: Little Carl has sure have matured since the first season of The Walking Dead. What’s not to like about the little bastard who not only is a good shot but has a good head on his shoulders. He picked up the responsibility of  leading in the  absence of his father. My favorite little man is doing big things.