Tag Archives: season premiere

how i met your mother recapping: farhampton

Previously on How I Met Your Mother: Marshall and Lily had their baby, Marvin, and we found out the bride at Barney’s wedding is Robin.

Apparently, Farhampton is the place to get married. It’s where Victoria and her fiance planned their wedding. And, it’s where Robin and Barney have planned theirs. One couple didn’t make it. What about the other? You ask. I’d like to know as well, but I can say with confidence we don’t find out in this episode. And I would say it’s likely we won’t find out until later this season, and possibly the finale. But we’ll see, won’t we.

Robin, Barney, Quinn, Lily, Marshall, and MArvin

Similar to the Season 7 finale, this episode flashes between that fateful day in 2012 when Barney and Quinn decided to get engaged and Ted and Victoria run away together. Lily and Marshall are delirious with love (or was it lack of sleep) and seeing their friends under the sea with the fishes and scuba divers. Needless to say they are not helpful with the “Quinn doesn’t need to know about Barney and Robin dilemma”, which of course means, they inadvertently tell Quinn about Barney and Robin.

Meanwhile, Ted has forced Victoria to write Klaus (played by the hilarious Thomas Lennon) a note, because it’s common courtesy when leaving someone at the altar. Ted tries several times to get the note in the right room and on his last attempt he stumbles into Klaus, who is leaving Victoria too. Ted asks him why and he says he doesn’t feel %$&^%*%&(*%^$#%@&*^%*%^ which translated from German to English means he doesn’t feel an absolute need, love, and affection for her that fills every fiber of his being. And Ted realizes, he doesn’t either.

After rehashing the whole Ted, Robin, Barney story Quinn still is reluctant to move forward with the engagement. That is, until she meets Nick and Nick’s abs, aka Robin’s new Beau. Robin tells Barney she’s kind of hurt by how easily he could brush off their relationship, and he gives her keys to a storage unit, which holds nothing but memories of their time together. The good memories before they got fat, lost their hair, and became absolute grouches.

Lily, Marshall, and Barney

Flash to a little ways down the road: we still don’t know if Robin and Barney have gotten married, though they seem to have their doubts. But there is woman with a yellow umbrella waiting for the same train as Ted. Could it be? Could it be? We will see. We will see.

Best/Funniest Moments

  • Ted rubbing Victoria’s letter on her, so it smells like her.
  • Barney spooning a Tiger while on a horse drawn carriage ride in central park.
  • Marshall and Lily not remembering anything, all episode long.

Quotes
Barney: “You know, I hate to perpetuate the stereotype, but German female wrestlers from Saxony are just beggin for it.”

Lily: (talking about baby Marvin) “You’re the prettiest girl in New York City.”

Ted: “When you leave someone at the altar you always leave a note!”

Kristen is a confused young adult who sometimes thinks TV shows are actually her life. Wouldn’t that be cool? Unless she was a victim on Dexter, or a deranged privileged teenager on gossip girl, or a wolf on teen wolf, or Liz Lemon! Never mind. It wouldn’t be cool. Kristen is a young adult. Follow her @kris10_Alyse or read frustrateddreamer.com

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parks and recreation recapping: ms. knope goes to washington

It’s back! For an exciting fifth season. I believe the story arc, acting, and plot of this show has gotten increasingly better and better with each season. So I have very, very high hopes for this season. Usually Parks and Rec episodes are solidly good. Unfortunately, their season premiere was not one of them. (For me, anyway. I mean, it was good, but it wasn’t really hilarious. I love when the episodes are so funny that I feel like I am laughing for a solid 30 minutes–including awesome commercials!–and have to keep rewinding it because I can’t hear the dialogue over my laughter.) But back to the episode.

A fun blooper picture–not from the actual episode, unfortunately.

The Plot 

The episode was located in Washington–as the title suggested; and paid homage to the classic “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” movie.

It followed Ben, working as a campaign manager in Washington, with his assistant April. Although their relationship wasn’t shown much–probably due to April and Andy sneaking off together to get “reacquainted” for most of the episode–last season showed us that if shown this season, their relationship will be a hilarious one.

Leslie and Andy go see Washington to visit them and to propose  a bill that will help clean up the Pawnee River. But she quickly becomes overwhelmed by the amount of powerful politicians surrounding her. Embarrassed of her small town (apparently there are 8 Pawnees across the US) and her career as a councilwoman, her self-induced misery stops her from enjoying meeting senators Barbara Boxer and Olympia Snow, ( 4 and 26 on Leslie’s List of Amazing Women), or even noticing that the John McCain tried to converse with her.

Back in Pawnee, Ron decides to organize Leslie’s annual “Leslie Knope Employment Enjoyment Summer Slam Grill Jam Fun-Splosian”–Ron-style, of course. Highlights of Pawnee include Ann and Tom pretending to still be dating, and Ron bringing a live pig so everyone can meet the food before it is cooked.

Leslie returns home, revitalized and excited for her job, thanks in part to an encouraging speech from Andy–which he did not know what he gave her.

Overall, it was a decent episode. Definitely the funniest of NBC’s comedy block. Although Creed’s circus quote at the end of “The Office” was pretty hilarious. I’m looking forward to see how Ann & Andy and Leslie & Ben’s relationship will work long-distance. But either way, I’m excited for this week’s episode.

Comments/Fun Tidbits

  • So many of these characters are solid actors–it would be great to see more of them in a larger role. All of the minor characters– Ron, Tom, Ann, Chris and Donna in particular –are excellent actors who I’d love to see more of.  Tom and Ann’s hilarious relationship was definitely the comedic highlight of the episode.
  • Unfortunately for Rob Lowe, he seems to have been given a strange role where his excellent acting cannot save his somewhat annoying–and oftentimes unnecessary–character. I’m finding that his character seems similar to Mark Brendanawicz, played by Paul Schneider. The other characters–and plot–seemed to have greatly improved after he left. Poor Paul Schneider.
  • I loved the Barbara Boxer, Olympia Snow, and John McCain cameos! It’s unfortunate that Leslie was uncharacteristically depressed, so she was unable to enjoy the occasions.
  • One of my favorite scenes: Ron driving away with the smoking grill attached to his car. This is what I would like to do with my car. Then I will have food whenever I stop driving!  Best idea ever.

Quotes 

Ron: “Everyone, meet your meat. This is your dinner, his name is Tom.”

***

Ron’s permit for killing and roasting a pig, which reads, “I can do what I want.”

***

Chris: “Ron? Chris Trager. Feeling update.”

**

Chris: ““Raisins: It’s nature’s candy.”

***

Ron: “In my opinion, not enough people have looked their dinner in the eyes and considered the circle of life.”

***

Andy: “Is [the cocktail party] a shorts or pants affair?”… “Could we just real quick stop at the nearest place that has free pants?”

***

Ann: “Did you put glitter in the laundry detergent?”

Tom: “Oh, yeah. I’m experimenting with some new entrepreneurial ideas. That one’s called “Sparkle Suds.” Dress loud.”

Ann: “Will you stop putting glitter in everything? This morning you put glitter in the butter.”

Tom: “Disco Dairy.” Spread the party.”

Ann: “No, that’s not a good idea. That’s terrible.”

Tom: “Well, the target demographic isn’t angry, middle-aged nurses.

***

Ann: ” I put glitter in all your moisturizers and lotions. I”m calling it Sparkle Skin by Annie. Twinkle twinkle, big star.”

Tom: “That is an amazing idea, and I will buy it from you.”

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glee recapping: the new rachel

Here’s what you missed on Glee (last season): Goodbye

Story

  • Rachel has to start all over to establish herself at NYADA.
  • The McKinley High Glee Club has open auditions to find new members.
  • The glee club is no longer at the bottom of the high school hierarchy.
  • Kurt is struggling to find his way after graduation. But Burt and Blaine help push him in the right direction.

 

Separation Anxiety: My largest concern about this season was how the show was going to deal with the original characters’ departure from McKinley. I’m not sure if we are going to get a glimpse of what the rest of the former New Directions are up to but I knew Rachel was to be a focal point–I mean, she’s Rachel Berry.

Marley Berry? I wasn’t sure if the episode’s title was intended to be aimed at Marley’s arrival to the glee club or for the changes Real Rachel is going through in New York–and, honestly, I’m still not sure. Did I like Marley as soon as I heard/saw her? Yes. Does the glee club need a new strong female lead? Of course. IS she REALLY “The New Rachel”? I doubt it. But hopefully she is a strong enough character to carry the glee club going forward. Rachel started as a sophomore as well and we see what lengths she went through to solidify her place with the New Directions and at McKinley as a whole. Good luck Marley. No pressure…

M.I.A. Ummm…where was Santana? And Mercedes? And Puck? And Finn? And Roz? And Rory? And Emma? And Mike Chang?! And that one black guy from season one?!?! I need answers. Or explanations. Or apologies. In copious amounts.

Leap of Faith? Do parents really just send their children halfway across the country with nothing to support themselves with? I love the fact that Rachel has someone from Lima with her during her road to Broadway but it just seemed like the move was forced. I was hoping we actually got to see both her and Kurt struggle with their new environments for awhile before they became each other’s security blanket.

Wishful Singing: I know the singing angle usually belongs to Nicole, but I have a request–maybe more like a plea. Mr. Ryan Murphy, if you have a heart of any kind can you please have Sam and Artie duet it up with a Justin Bieber “Boyfriend” swoon session? Preferably directed at Marley. Just thinking of it brings back fond memories…

MUSIC

Call Me Maybe (Blaine, Tina, Unique, Brittany) This late spring/early summer hit hasn’t gotten old for me yet, but I’m still glad they knocked the obligatory performance out early on in the season. I hated the concept of this song being used to pick the “new Rachel” because it only showed how good these four sound as a unit without at all showing the strong stand-out voice/performer they seem to think the glee club needs. Watching Brittany dance with Blaine only made me miss Mike, but overall, a very adorable start to the episode. (B)

Dance Again/Americano (Cassandra) Someone over at Glee sure knows how to pick their blonde guest stars! I knew Kate Hudson could dance, but I was mostly indifferent about her role until this performance. Solid dancing and singing, but it also illustrated that it’s only appropriate to bump and grind with your students when they’re 18 and older (Mr. Schue, yes, I’m talking to you). I can’t wait to see if Cassandra’s sober Jekyll and drunken Hyde dynamic plays a part in the performances/musical selections she has this season. (B)

NY State of Mind (Rachel and Marley) A downtrodden Rachel in New York reminds me of the Rachel in season one, before she got borderline annoying, bursting at the seems, full of unappreciated potential. Maybe that’s why hearing her sing this classic gave me those familiar “Rachel Berry chills”. Marley was also great, although not quite Rachel great, but there’s no doubt she’ll bring something new and greatly welcomed to the glee club in terms of performance and sound. One minor note: I fear that Marley’s newsboy hat is her ‘thing’. Either I don’t like it because it’s distracting, or it’s distracting because I don’t like it. Regardless, I don’t like it! (A)

It’s Time (Blaine) If we’re going to have the requisite courtyard performance each season, it should always be done by Blaine. The double-dutch, jump ropes and red cups are things that can only be pulled off by those as adorably stylish as Kurt’s amor. Long distance + high school isn’t the best combination, so although I don’t have much hope for the longevity of Klaine’s romance, at least this performance will serve as a reminder of happier times. (A)

Chasing Pavements (Marley and the New Directions) Did I find this song particularly relevant to Marley solidifying her status as a New Directions member or Kurt joining Rachel in New York? Not at all. But whatever, this moment wasn’t about relevance, it was about reminding us that the New Directions are moving on with a very solid group and at least half of the show will now be Rachel Does New York (or some variation). For Marley’s first solo with the group, this was pretty great. (A)

Busters Get Popped (Stoner Brett)/ Never Say Never (Jake) Please, oh please, don’t let this not be the last time we see Stoner Brett. I know the focus was supposed to be on everyone else sounding so crappy that Jake and Marley stood out, which they did, but Mr. Brett certainly shined by providing one of my favorite moments of the night. Jake aka the bad boy that is going to take Puck’s place (just in case that wasn’t clear, and to avoid even a hint of symbolism, the writer’s went the literal route and made him Puck’s little brother) sounds and looks like a beautiful, albeit slightly rough, little angel. I’d like more of him and more of his voice, so let’s not drag this whole “I’m damaged and singing won’t fix that” thing out too much longer.

QUOTES

“Oh, in case you’re wondering, which you were, I’m straight.” – Brody

“Kitty is my new head bitch. She’s like a young Quinn Fabray, except she’s not pregnant, manic depressive or in and out of a wheelchair.” – Sue

“That’s a great haircut Mercedes. I thought you graduated.” – Brittany…after seeing Wade

“It’s hard making out over Skype, you can’t really scissor a webcam.” – Brittany

“I had a song in my heart Blaine Warbler, and you killed it. Now, I have a dead song in my heart and pretty soon, the corpse of my head heart’s song is going to start to smell.” – Brittany

“…a pre-op Precious, based on the novel Barf by Sapphire.” – Kitty…on Wade

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doctor who recapping: asylum of the daleks

Geronimo, Whovians! Season 7 of the rebooted British television show is here and ready to amuse, amaze, astonish, and confuse!

Plot

  • Amy and Rory sign their divorce papers (gasp!)
  • The Doctor, Amy, and Rory are all kidnapped and taken to the Dalek parliament – a lot like a human parliament, except that things seem to actually get done.
  • The dynamic trio is forcibly sent to the asylum of the Daleks, a hellish planet full of all the Daleks the regular Daleks thought were too demented and weird. The regular Daleks want the Doctor and his companions to lower the force field on the asylum so that the whole thing can be destroyed.
  • The Doctor, Amy, and Rory are aided by a quirky young woman named Oswin who escaped the fate of the rest of her crew by hiding out. She speaks to the three by hacking into the communication systems and helps the Doctor move around by erasing the memory of him from the Daleks’ hive brains.
  • Amy and Rory realize they still love each other. Amy kicked Rory out because she knew he wanted kids and she couldn’t have any. Poor girl who waited; poor boy who waited 2,000 years.
  • The Doctor finds a convenient teleport. He plans to lower the force field (thus completing their Dalek objective), rescue Oswin from her fortified hiding place, and escape the asylum before the Daleks’ take this opportunity to kill him and his friends.
  • The Doctor’s plan hits a major road block when he arrives to save Oswin. Why? Because plot twist – she’s a Dalek!!! She used to be a human, but upon crashing on the planets, the Daleks recognized her intelligence and decided to surgically transform her into one of them. Oswin didn’t even realize she was a Dalek.
  • Oswin tearfully fights back her Dalek urge to kill the Doctor and tells him to remember her as he leaves.
  • The Doctor, Amy, and Rory teleport back to the TARDIS. The Doctor taunts the Daleks and is pleasantly shocked to discover that Oswin had actually deleted the memory of him from all Daleks everywhere. Doctor who? (No, seriously the Daleks ask that. It’s a bit silly and self-referential and it was already done last season . . . but still, brilliant!)

Talking Points

Introducing the New and Improved Daleks

The Daleks have a new trick up their . . . plungers. It’s about time, too. Up till now, viewers have had to nod skeptically as the Doctor insisted his worst enemy was a herd of discarded kitchen appliances shaped like upside down ice cream cones (and, come on, it’s not like season 5’s primary color paint job helped that dynamic). Anyway, the Daleks can now infiltrate human bodies, living or dead. Why is this important? Now Daleks can be anywhere. Before you could spot one a mile away and deflect an attack with a baking sheet.

Doctor Who?

Okay, I’ll indulge myself a bit and ramble on about a problem that probably bothers only about 0.05% of Doctor Who fans. The Daleks are life forms, unpleasant or not. Why does the Doctor’s mantra of compassion not extend to them? No, I get it – the Daleks love killing and hating. They would never understand compassion. But at least past seasons, noticeably Eccleston’s only season and Tennent’s third, addressed the discrepancy between how the Doctor views killing and how the Doctor views killing Daleks. I get that perhaps there’s not as much room for this dark and morally-ambiguous type of story-telling (also highly evident in Tennent’s “Waters of Mars”) in the new seasons, but I still miss it.

The Problem of Oswin

Get ready, nerds – this one’s a doozy. Last March, producers announced that British actress Jenna-Louise Coleman would be the Doctor’s next companion. Show runner Stephen Moffat was pretty adamant in insisting that her first appearance would be in this year’s Christmas special. The problem? Coleman surprised everyone by showing up as Oswin in the premiere episode. This, of course, wouldn’t be a massive problem except for the fact that Oswin is a) a Dalek and b) dead. I almost wrote an essay about the different ways out of the Oswin problem, but that’s probably not helpful to anyone. Suffice it to say, I trust Moffat. He has a near-perfect record when it comes to innovation, shock, and trippy timey-wimey shenanigans. Sure, he’s barely hovering at 50/50 concerning logical season arcs, but nobody’s perfect and I’m a tough season arc critic (which is probably my only real, unique skill – and it’s not even that real).

Quotes

The Doctor: What so special about this lot then?

Oswin: Don’t know. Survivors of particular wars. Spiridon. Kembel. Aridius. Vulcan. Exxilon. Ringing any bells?

The Doctor: All of them.

Oswin: Yeah? How?

The Doctor: These are the Daleks who survived me.

**********

Rory: Oh, so this is the kind of escape plan where you survive about four seconds longer.

**********

Daleks: Identify!

The Doctor: Well, it’s me. You know me. The Doctor. The Oncoming Storm. The Predator.

Dalek: Titles are not meaningful in this context. Doctor who?

Daleks: Doctor who?

The Doctor: Oh, Oswin. Oh, you did it to them all. You, beauty.

Daleks: Doctor who? Doctor who?

The Doctor: Fellas, you’re never gonna stop asking.

**********

Hayley has other interests besides just nerdy TV shows. She also is a big fan of thinking. She ponders the great mysteries of life, like how more of her time can be devoted to watching those nerdy TV shows.

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shameless recapping: summertime

The second season premiere starts exactly how the last season finished…all over the place! Steve is still out of the country because of his grand theft auto empire. Frank is still living with an agoraphobic woman (Joan Cusack) on the verge of a breakthrough – and her teenage daughter who took advantage of him sexually then posted it on the interwebs. Fiona is trying to get on with her personal life after Steve.”Lip” is in an underground fight club. And Kevin has a HUGE marijuana grow-op. Gotta love summertime Chicago at the Gallagher house, right?

Fiona moves on?: With all the plots and storylines that are in every episode of Shameless I still see Fiona (Emmy Rossum) as the “main” character. The majority of her time last season was spent with, or worrying about, Steve and now since he isn’t there I was very interested in how she would cope. But just like with everything else in her life she can adjust on the fly. I don’t know how long it’s going to be before Steve makes his return but I’m interested to see how far down the rabbit hole Fiona goes until he does.

Time’s almost up “Daddy Frank: Summertime has been good for Sheila Jackson. She can take 100 steps from her front door and may soon be able to leave her block soon. This doesn’t really bode well for Frank because she will be able to interact with the outside world again; maybe even find another man better than Frank – which can’t be difficult at all.

Ice Cream and Nicotine: I didn’t know why Lip needed a tracking device for police officers – unless he was still trying to steal cars – until I saw that he was helping Kevin sell cigarettes to “of age” 14-year-olds from an ice cream truck. I’m interested to see how long this scheme lasts before Tony, or another of Chicago’s finest, finds out about it.

Fiona Jr?: Each of the residents of the Gallagher house is strong in their own way, but Debbie seems to be right behind Fiona in terms of helping the family. She is running a daycare with the help of her younger brother Carl and she is only 12. Even though she let Frank sneak away with Liam, I still think Debbie is one of the stronger characters despite her age.

Long Distance Dreams: I hope that Fiona’s lost love for track turns into something more than just a one episode focal point. It will giver her something else to focus on besides being the adopted matriarch of the Gallagher house. Even though she can’t live without her family – as we saw last season when she moved in next door with Steve – she needs a mental break every now and then.

Jasmine…: As soon as Jasmine came onto the scene late last season I’ve been questioning her true intentions with Fiona. She helped her get a job during the first season finale but she seems to be trying to get Fiona to do a lot more than income tax returns. Jasmine is clearly trying to get Fiona more accustomed to her free-spirited lifestyle. I think she may even have a bit of a crush on Fiona actually, and who knows what kind of trouble that could get her in?! I have faith that Veronica won’t let anything to drastic happen…maybe…

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