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fringe recapping: alone in the world

Walter has begun seeing a therapist regularly to keep tabs on his mental state. Walter doesn’t completely tell his therapist about the voices he’s been hearing or the man that is haunting him. Olivia awkwardly lets Agent Lee know that if he “gets creeped out” she is there for him to talk. He says that he is completely fine and he has no issues with the Fringe Division.

Then we see a young boy being chased by two other boys. The fleeing boy runs into a tunnel to get away from the other two boys but they trap him in the tunnel. As one of the bullies is about to punch the boy his friend complains that something is touching his leg and he can’t move. The same thing begins to happen to bully that was about to hit the boy. The boy looks at what is happening in shock, nothing happens to him though, and he flees.

The Fringe Division gets the case and Walter is performing his signature autopsy on one of the bodies. Broyles comes in to check on Walter as he begins to hear Peter’s voice in his head. Broyles is confused by what he is witnessing as Walter tries to drown out the voice by speaking louder. He says he needs the other boy’s body to compare to the one he has ultimately.

Lee and Dunham track down the boy at his school. His name is Aaron. He is sitting at a table by himself drawing pictures when Olivia approaches him. They take him back to Walter’s lab and Olivia tells the boy that she likes to draw too but Aaron isn’t really the talkative type. She tells him that Walter is going to run some tests on him. Aaron seems to be fine after testing but when the Fringe Division begins investigating the site where the two boys were killed things change. Whatever they do to the organism that is growing in the tunnel happens to Aaron.

Long story short; the organism is attached to Aaron because he has been to the tunnel more than he has led on. Walter is disappointed in Aaron that he hadn’t told him the truth initially. But in order to kill the organism they have to find a way to destroy the link it has forged with Aaron.  Walter figures out that the bond is emotional and pleads with Aaron to let go of the organism by telling the Aaron that “he doesn’t want to lose him again.” Clearly confusing him for Peter. Aaron eventually listens and the organism is destroyed.

Walter and Aaron

When Walter is alone in his lab afterwards he tries to perform a gruesome surgery on himself until Olivia interrupts him. He tells her that he is going insane and he doesn’t want to go back to the asylum. He tells her about the voices and the mysterious man he has been seeing and she shows him a drawing of hers with the same face he has been seeing.. She says he has been seeing his face in her dreams for three weeks. Walter is then sure that he is not crazy because someone else is dealing with the same plight…maybe not to the same extent as he is though.

Observations

  • The acting on Fringe is definitely top-tier. John Noble and Anna Torv are completely committed to their characters and they sell it with all the mannerisms and intricacies.
  • I thought that the whole “Peter being in limbo” thing was going to get old and redundant this far into the season but the way it has been done has proved me wrong. Agent Lee isn’t exactly filling Peter’s shoes but he character is solid enough to fill in for now.
  • I wouldn’t mind seeing Faux-livia more…she’s hot!

 

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glee recapping: asian f

STORY

As the tryouts for the school’s rendition of West Side Story continue, the judges (Artie, Emma, Coach Beiste) find it difficult to choose a leading lady between Mercedes and Rachel. The decision is to have them both audition again for the role of Maria; both singing the song of the judges’ choosing. Mercedes is fed up with the way everyone gives Rachel what she wants. Her progress in “Booty Camp” aren’t making things any easier for her either. She has been coming late and not remembering, or just being able to perform, her choreography. Mr. Shuester tells Mercedes that she needs to make more of an effort to improve but Mercedes lashes out at Mr. Shuester and the Glee Club. She says that Rachel doesn’t have to work for anything, she just gets want she wants and she has “outgrown” all of them. As she is about to leave Mr. Shuester tells her that if she leaves she is done with Glee Club. She chooses to stay and audition for her chance to take on Rachel for the role. After the audition Rachel knows instantly that Mercedes is “better than (her)”. The judges call the girls into their office to inform them that they have double-cast the role of Maria so they can share the spotlight. Mercedes doesn’t like this and asks Rachel, in front of the judges, “were you better than me?”. Rachel doesn’t reply and Mercedes tells them that Rachel can have the role because “no one ever wants to hurt (Rachel’s) feelings”. She then goes to Ms. Cocoran and asks to be in her new Glee Club.

Shuester finds Emma’s  secret stash of marriage magazines at home. He knows that their relationship is getting serious and marriage may be in the future. He says he is ready to meet Emma’s parents but Emma seems hesitant about it. Later, Will surprises Emma by inviting her parents to dinner. Emma’s mother constantly makes fun of her daughter’s problems with OCD by calling her “Freaky-Deaky”. Emma tells Will that her parents are “Ginger Supremacists” and that’s the reason why she was against them meeting him. After a dinner conversation that dances on the line between ridiculous and racist, Will tells Emma’ s parents that they are racist and insensitive. Kudos for sticking up for your chick Will.

Mike got an “A-” on his chemistry test and his father is convinced that Mike is doing drugs or is just preoccupied with extracurricular activities. He wants Mike to quit the Glee Club so he can bring his grade back up. Mike agrees to go to a tutor and not to tryout for the role of “Riff” in the play. On his way to a scheduled session with his tutor, Mike stops in an empty dance room and weighs his options – with the help of visual projections of Tina and his father’s opinions of him. The judges are ready to pass up Mike’s audition when he shows up. He tells the judges he wants to tryout for Riff and Emma reminds him that role isn’t strictly dancing. He says he knows and that he has been practicing his singing. After his performance the judges are thrilled with Mike’s vocal progress and his dancing is always above the standard. The next day, as Mike is practicing in the dance room, his mother interrupts him and tells him that she always wanted to dance but her parents didn’t allow her to. She tells her son she supports him in whatever he chooses to do. Mike then gives her the dance lessons she always wanted.

Kurt is sure that he has the election for Senior Class President won, since he is only running against Brittany and “no one takes her seriously”. Santana and Brittany confront Kurt and Rachel and tell them they Brittany is a better candidate because there has been no progress within the school since boys have been President for the past six years. Brittany gives a uplifting performance to pretty much guarantee the the vote of the female demographic of the school – I would, personally, vote for anything Brittany wants me to. Later, Rachel decides to join in the race as she fears that she won’t get the leading role in West Side Story because of Mercedes’ second audition. Kurt is upset with Rachel because she was his campaign leader. Rachel says she “needs something for (her) senior year to make her special and standout”. Kurt feels that she wants to be President for her own personal benefit whereas he feels he can inspire people like him to take positions of power. Looks like their new-found friendship may already be hitting the skids…

MUSIC

Spotlight – Mercedes

I do not like this song…at all. That didn’t really sway my opinion one way or the other, but I thought I’d put that out there. Now, RnB is Mercedes’ home court, so it was no surprise that she did well vocally with the song. Lyrically, this was just a silly selection if Rachel was the intended “target”. Spotlight is a song about a man and a woman, not two girls battling it out for the lead role in a high school musical. The song also did very little to showcase why she should be Maria, but based on the judges’ reactions, I’m in the minority with that kind of thinking.

Solid C rating…it was a very average performance that I think I was supposed to enjoy way more than I did.

Run the World (Girls) – Brittany

I LOVE BRITTANY, but I also hate this song…or rather I did, before seeing Beyonce’s video and then I began to semi-not hate it. Regardless, my girl-crush on Ms. Pierce was activated when she belted out the first “Girls!” Vocally this wasn’t as strong as the original; however, coupled with her energy, dancing and Brittany-ness….who cares?! I loved the Santana addition and seeing little Emma’s eyes light up with a spark of female empowerment. This performance really embodied the grrl power spirit of the song. More cute leather skirts for Brittany please!

Solid A rating…when you can make Sue Sylvester cut a tiny little rug in the stands you can guarantee you killed it.

Dancing/Cool – Mike

The pre-performance had Mike dance battling his father’s words, while also finding comfort in Tina’s encouragement. His moves weren’t anything different from what we’ve seen before, but now we know the emotion behind his spins and leaps. The transition to his ‘Cool’ performance was perfect and he definitely has been working on his singing. This being heralded as a huge episode for Mike Chang makes complete sense. Not only do we see heart in his audition, but also a nod to the pressures many high school students (and everyone else!) are under to be who their parents want them to be. Off-topic, but I realized while watching this that I will also think of Roses when I see boys dancing in varsity jackets.

Solid A rating…it might actually be a ‘B’ but I cried, so that added a few extra points.

It’s All Over – Mercedes and (most of) the New Directions

Mercedes finally reached her breaking point. Similar to Effie, she was sick of her star quality being pushed to the background. I enjoyed how the group was incorporated, so much in fact that I’ll look past the inappropriateness of Mr. Schue performing the Curtis Taylor Jr. parts (aka Effie’s ex-lover in Dreamgirls). Everyone sounded great and this song selection really illustrated all of the issues that have been brewing in the glee club. If the writers were using this episode as an opportunity to showcase Mercedes and make viewers understand her plight, they did a great job.

Solid B rating…I was so happy that they didn’t throw on “And I Am Telling You”!

Fix You – Mr. Schue and the New Directions

This performance was perfectly cheesy and fitting. I was a little uncertain when it was just Schue and Emma, but when I went back and watched it again, I appreciated the duality there: He was singing to her, but also to his semi-splintered club. It was a really sweet performance and definitely closed out the night on a somber note. I think we all knew that the episode’s end would find Mercedes heading over to the “other” glee club.

Solid B rating…Mr Schue’s voice was oddly Kurt-esque at the beginning.

Quotes

“It’s not about doing your best anymore, it’s about doing better.” – Mr. Schue

“If you’re serious about you and me, why haven’t I met your parents?” – Mr. Schue
::sputters:: “Uh….they’re dead.” – Emma
“You spoke to them on the phone last night.” – Mr. Schue
“I spoke to their ghosts last night, I have ghost parents.” – Emma

“Mercedes don’t make this a stupid pride thing.” – Artie
Oh, it’s a pride thing. But it’s not stupid.” – Mercedes

“I got an A- Tina.” – Mike
“You got an Asian F?!” – Tina

“…that was some really fancy footwork. Let’s hope you didn’t waste too much of your time.” – Coach Beiste
“It’s what I love to do. It’ll never be a waste of my time.” – Mike (about dancing)

“We don’t hate anyone. We just enjoy the company of other redheads. Which is why we enjoy The Red Oaks so much.” – Mrs. Pillsbury
“What’s The Red Oaks?” – Will
It’s a ‘gingers only’ country club.” – Mrs. Pillsbury

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glee’s top five episodes….in my opinion anyway.

Anyone who follows entertainment news has heard the rumors. Next week’s episode of Glee will be the best, not only of the season, but of the entire show. While I’m skeptical, I’m also willing to believe that Glee still has some of its first season magic left. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the superficial mess that was season two, but in no way did it hold a candle to the first season. So I’ve decided to compile a list of the five episodes I think fall in the best episodes of all time category. For me to think that the new one is really that good, it will have to be better than all of these:

Glee Prom Couples

#5- Prom Queen, Season 2
This episode rocks for a number of reasons: pretty dresses, lots of fighting, plenty of tears, and of course the big shocking Prom Queen announcement. Though some of the songs: “Dancing Queen”, “Friday” (the biggest abysmal of the entire Glee song track and that includes “Run Joey Run”) weren’t as good as others: “Rolling the Deep”, “I’m not Gonna Teach Your Boyfriend How to Dance with You”, and “Jar of Hearts”. But really I love this episode for Jesse’s entrance, Quinn slapping Rachel, Jesse and Finn’s fight, Mercedes’ chance to be Cinderella and Kurt’s brave moment.

Kurt and April

#4- Rhodes Not Take, Season 1
YOU CANNOT GO WRONG WITH KRISTEN CHENOWETH!! And as an alcoholic April Rhodes, Kristen Chenoweth is at her best. With Rachel gone from the glee club, they need a new female lead who has the talent to carry Glee. Who wouldn’t think to call on April Rhodes? The songs in this episode: “Maybe This Time”, to this day one of my favorites, “Alone”, good but not overly memorable, “Last Name”, absolutely fantastic, and “Somebody to Love”, quite possibly the greatest Glee performance of all time, are some of my go to glee songs. And two of the most memorable quotes in Glee history were in this episode: “Put that in your pipes and smoke it” said by Kristen Chenoweth and “Oh Bambi, I cried so hard when those hunters shot your mommy,” said by Kurt to Emma, who really does look like Bambi it’s an easy confusion to make, even if you’re not drunk.

Will Schuester vs. Bryan Ryan

#3- Dream On, Season 1
With its epic duets, Will Schuester, I mean Matthew Morrison, and Neil Patrick Harris, I mean NEIL PATRICK HARRIS, and Idina Menzel and Lea Michele, this episode is absolutely fantastic. Not to mention the revelation of what Jesse has really been doing at McKinley High (spying for Shelby, AKA Idina Menzel plus the revelation that Idina Menzel is Rachel’s MOM!). This episode just kills it. Rachel confused and brooding, Neil Patrick Harris killing Glee dreams, and Artie rising up out of his chair in a day dream to dance his heart out but then coming to terms with and accepting his condition. The songs, “Dream On”, “I Dreamed a Dream”, “Piano Man” (it still kills me that this isn’t available on iTunes) “Dream a Little Dream of you” and “Safety Dance” are seriously awesome.

Like a Prayer, Glee Club

#2- Power of Madonna, Season 1
OK so I have to admit, I’m not the biggest Madonna fan, so I wasn’t sure about this episode. It was the first time an episode was going to be dedicated to one artist and I wasn’t thrilled with the artist, but I was pleasantly surprised. The songs themselves (“Like a Prayer”, “Borderline/Open Your Heart”, “Like a Virgin”, “4 Minutes”, “What it Feels Like For A Girl”, “Express Yourself”) are enough to carry this episode, but then you have the whole aspect of female empowerment, Jesse and Rachel’s romance blossoming and culminating into Jesse’s transfer, Sue’s hair dilemma and merciless jokes about Will’s hair, the impending loss of a few virginities, and Finn’s jealously toward Rachel’s relationship with Jesse. This one will always be one of the best to me.

Glee Club Sectionals

#1- Sectionals, Season 1
The episode features everything I love about Glee: Amazing Songs (“Don’t Rain on my Parade”, one of the most authentic “star moments” Rachel has ever had on this show, “You Can’t Always Get What you Want”, perfectly rearranged to highlight the glee club’s talent, “My Life Would Suck Without You”, a tribute to Mr. Schuester and all the performances the Glee club had done so far),a much anticipated kiss between Will and Emma, Finn being a leader instead of a doofus, an exposed secret, a foiled plan, and a major comeback as a result of the Glee club pulling together like a team. But most of all, this episode was the perfect recipe for a midseason finale: just enough to keep us complacent for a few months, but still leave us wanting more.

Honorable Mentions: Born This Way, Season 2; Funeral, Season 2; Pilot, Season 1.

Now I will say this list was particularly difficult to make, because there are a lot of episodes that were memorable for different reasons. And also because I love this show so much that even episodes that aren’t my favorite are still good enough for me to watch over and over again. In case you hadn’t noticed I am a gleek. The above list reflects a combination of great songs, interesting storylines, memorable quotes and other jaw-dropping moments. While there are many episodes that for me are great because of that one song or that one moment, they couldn’t make the list because they weren’t as great overall. Feel free to disagree (or agree), I’d love to hear your comments.

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fringe recapping: one night in october

In the second episode of Fringe’s second season a serial killer is on the loose in the alternate universe. That no that all the victims have holes in their head and appear to have been frozen from the inside out.  In Olivia’s universe the same man is  Professor John McClennan (John Pyper-Ferguson) . He specializes in forensic sciences and has written several books on serial killers. The Fringe Division in the alternate universe ask Olivia to help them convince the professor to help profile the serial killer in the alternate universe without letting him know about the alternate universe or alternate him…minor details really. He agrees and Olivia tells him he needs to take a sedative to make the trip because it will be much easier that way.

Back in the Walter’s lab he is clearly trying to block out all ways out seeing and hearing the “strange man” (Peter) that is haunting him. He covers all the computer screens with sheets and sits directly in front of a large wall of speakers as music plays. Olivia and Astrid just chalk it up as Walter being Walter so not much attention is paid to it.

When Olivia and Professor McClennan arrive in the alternate universe he is still unconscious from the sedative which gives Faux-livia time to dress as Olivia and even put highlights in her hair to help the disguise. Faux-livia then gives the professor a tour of the serial killer’s house so he can help profile the suspect. The most important thing he realizes is that the killer feels like he missed out on childhood as is trying to make up for it. He finds several things in the killer’s house that remind him of things he use to have growing up. Then he comes across a wall covered with pictures of people, and amongst them he finds a picture of his father. This sends the professor into a confused panic and he wants to  know why this is happening. He runs out of the house and sees one of the amber quarantines and asks where he is.

Alternate Lincoln, Olivia and Faux-livia

Both “Livias” tell him all about the alternate universe and his alternate self. Olivia speaks privately with him inside and tells him that some decisions were made that changed his path in life.  He tells how something use to be “wrong” with him when he was a child and that his father use to try to beat it out of him. But a woman named Marjorie “did with love what his father tried to do with brutality”. John wants to meet with his alternate and tell him that he can get through his issues. But Olivia warns him that he must not meet his alternate. After both Livias leave the house to discuss the next step for the investigation John escapes through a bathroom window.

John finds his alternate’s lab and confronts him as he is about to steal the memories of another victim. John tells him that about his childhood and everything matches up until he tells him about “one night in October” when he was at a fair. John says that his father found the “dead things” and came to beat him while playing on the Ring Toss. Alternate John says his father caught him and beat him “for three days straight” whereas John says he ran as far away as he could and woke up in a field. At that point he met Margerie and she helped him with his problems.

Faux-livia and Professor John McClennan

Alternate John is upset that he didn’t have those memories of Marjorie so he attacks John and knocks him out to hook him up to his machine in an attempt steal the memories he missed out on.  Alternate John is successful in stealing John’s memories before the Fringe Division finds him. Olivia confronts him and Alternate John shoots himself before he is apprehended.  Back in the original universe Professor McClennan is in the hospital recovering from being hooked up to Alternate John’s memory stealing machine. Agent Broyles tells Oliva that he has no recollection of the last two weeks or of Margerie because those memories were stolen from him. Broyles said that he will have to be closely watched now because they don’t know if he will suffer the same fate as Alternate John. Olivia speaks with him and he says that even though things are dark you can still make light from it. Olivia says that even though he doesn’t remember Marjorie he remembers what she taught him.

Back in Walter’s lab he is again trying to go to sleep until he hears Peter’s voice pleading for help. No matter what he does to drown out the noise Peter’s voice gets louder as the episode ends.

Things I Noticed

  • Alternate Agent Broyles is alive again since he didn’t die due to Peter’s new non-existence…that should makes sense
  • Astrid asks Olivia why she doesn’t date Lincoln and she says “Maybe her ‘type’ doesn’t exist”
  • Anna Torv is selling the subtle differences between Olivia and Faux-livia very well.
  • When is Peter coming back?!?!
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glee recapping: i am unicorn

The Story

The episode starts with Brittany asking to run Kurt’s campaign to become Senior Class President. She thinks he is a special “unicorn” and has what it takes to lead. She goes all out with the unicorn idea and turns Kurt’s campaign into a celebration of his “magical” homosexuality. Kurt doesn’t like the bold movement and decides he wants a more classic appeal inspired by Judy Garland and the  “black glam of fur coat ads”…not gay at all.

Mr. Shuester informs Glee Club that he can’t direct the upcoming school play, West Side Story, because he has to focus on making the adjustments so they can win nationals. Coach Beiste, Ms. Pillsbury and Artie take up the reigns instead.  Shuester thinks some of the club members need dance lessons so he and Mike Chang start up “Booty Camp” – not at all sure what that title has to do with dancing – to help the rhythmically challenged (Finn, Puck, Kurt, Mercedes. Blaine volunteered) . I love the fact that the producers of the show are self-aware and can use it to carry the plot along. Besides, Finn needs help!

Shelby Corcoran (Idina Menzel) is back as a part-time teacher for a second glee club at McKinley funded by Suger Motta’s father Al. She tells Shuester that she doesn’t wat to run away from her past anymore and she plans to be more involved in Rachel’s life as well as letting Puck and Quinn be more involved with their biological child, Beth, whom Shleby adopted. Puck gets Quinn to talk to Shelby about arranging to see Beth and Shelby tells her that she is willing to let them interact with their child but Quinn has to change the way she is carrying herself. I know caring and being emotional has never been a serious issue with Puck – the relationship with Lauren was a laughable affair in its entirety – but I believe that he actually wants to be in his child’s life.

Sue recruits Quinn to do a piece for her political campaign to show how “the arts” ruined her life and turned her into the “skank” she is. She agrees. When Quinn goes to confront Mr. Shuester, with Sue and Becky in tow, about how Glee club ruined her life he is livid. Telling her that the club that she kept trying to sabotage was there for her during the most difficult times of her life so far and she is foolish for thinking otherwise. Quinn is clearly surprised by Shuester’s reaction but we can tell she knows he was telling the truth.

Kurt tries to convince the directors of the school play that he is masculine enough to play the role of Tony in West Side Story with an awkward rendition of a scene from Romeo and Juliet with Rachel. The judges don’t buy it one bit. In fact, he gets laughed off the stage. Kurt goes to his father Burt for advice about the situation. Burt tells Kurt that he has to “write his own story” if being gay is stopping him from getting the roles he wants. It’s sweet to see that Burt is getting better at understanding his son and the situation he is in. Sometimes he seems like he knows more about being gay than his son does.

Back in Booty Camp – I just had to – Finn is hesitant when trying to keep up with a routine that Mike and Shuester perform. After a pep talk from Shuester, Finn tries it one more time and nails it. Hopefully he can retain his new found footwork and we won’t have to witness him blending in with the background when the intermediate choreography comes into play. Quinn, blond hair and all, comes back to Glee club and tells her main intent is just to, seemingly, conform to get custody of her child back.

Blaine closes the show with an amazing performance of Something’s Coming and the directors ask him to audition for the lead male role of Tony. A role he didn’t want to audition for because he knew Kurt wanted it.  The cliffhanger ending comes before Blaine can make that decision.

The Music

 I’m sensing a trend here: less music and more story. I think this is what Glee needed to ensure that they make it to a fourth and fifth season, smoothly. As of now, I do miss the huge musical numbers and Britney Spears-themed episodes of yesteryear, but if this means that the writers are keeping things fresh then I am all for it.

 Somewhere (There’s a Place for Us) – Rachel and Shelby (aka the bio-mom)

I used Poker Face as the standard for this duet. This time around, the duo had just a touch more heart and the performance was a substantially better. Rachel and Shelby have a really great chemistry and anything Streisand related is guaranteed to be a-may-zing when Rachel is involved. I especially like the diva-esque disappearing act with bio-mommy at the end. I don’t want any overkill, but I could go for another one of these before season’s end.

Solid A rating….I’ll admit, the A is mainly due to my joy for watching Shelby and Rachel together.

I’m the Greatest Star – Kurt

 I don’t love Kurt’s voice in large dosages so I cringed when the song started and I realized he wasn’t going to be joined by Blaine. However, the showmanship alone won me over. It was during his twirling of the knives (swords…whatever they were) that I realized Kurt’s performance is enhanced when he’s not being annoying like he was for the majority of last season.

Solid B rating….what a difference a season makes.

Something’s Coming – Blaine

Similar to Artie, Beiste and Emma I SWOONED watching this performance. I gave him the standing ovation that Artie could not and I think I fell a little more in love with him post-performance. He does every song so effortlessly and I think we all knew he would be Tony for all the reasons Kurt will not. He has the leading man charm that no one in the New Directions ever quite grasped.

Solid A+ rating….I love Blaine, period.

Quotes

Dude you’re gay. And not like Rock Hudson gay. Really gay. You sing like Diana Ross and you dress like you own a magic chocolate factory.” -Burt Hummel (to Kurt)

It’s Rachel Berry. She’s got the eye of the tiger. Which I like. She’s Jewish, but I think that helps with the whole Puerto Rican thing.” -Coach Beiste

I wanted something toned down!” -Kurt (to Brittany about his campaign posters)
This is toned down. In the original one the unicorn was riding you.” -Santana

You look like a real housewife of Reno.” -Puck (to “Skank” Quinn)

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