tv shows

A Note About the Doctor Who S10E11 (World Enough and Time) review

I’m not reviewing this week’s Doctor Who. It will be reviewed next week so I can review both parts of the story at once. World Enough and Time is very much the first half of one whole story and I’d rather wait to review it until I know how the story ends. Unlike other episodes in this season, World Enough and Time isn’t a stand-alone episode. The Monk trilogy were three episodes that told complete stories but were also connected. World Enough and Time doesn’t tell a complete story, so I’d rather wait for The Doctor Falls so I can review the entire story.

Do You Believe? (American Gods S01E08 – “Come to Jesus” Review)

am godAfter last week’s less than stellar episode, American Gods is back with another strong, engaging episode. And just in time, too, as it’s the season finale. And, boy, it’s quite an epic one. All the various plot threads of the season come together in one big cluster as it all leads to the house of the goddess Easter. In Come to Jesus, written by Bekah Brunstetter, Bryan Fuller, and Michael Green and directed by Floria Sigismondi, it’s the eve of war and Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane) must recruit one more Old God: Ostara, ne Easter, Goddess of the Dawn (Kristen Chenoweth), but winning her over will require making a good impression, and that is where Mr. Nancy (Orlando Jones) comes in. (As always, this review will contain spoilers, so read ahead at your own risk.)  (more…)

A Light in the Dark (Doctor Who S10E10 “The Eaters of Light” Review)

The Eaters of LightThe early previews for this episode made it sound a lot worse than it actually was. Is it the greatest episode of Doctor Who ever? No. But there is quite a bit to like, and on the whole, it’s rather good. Not the best episode this season, but still a very good one. In The Eaters of Light, written by Rona Munro and directed by Charles Palmer, A hunt for the lost Ninth Roman Legion leads the Doctor, Bill, and Nardole into the middle of an ancient battle that could cast humanity into the dark forever. What is inside the cairn? And how far will they have to go defeat the terrifying alien Eaters of Light? (As always, this review will contain spoilers. So, if you haven’t seen the episode, don’t read this until you have.)  (more…)

Gallifrey Lies (Doctor Who – A Brief History of Time Lords, by Steve Tribe – Review)

34994671I enjoy when spin-off books are written as though they exist in the universe of the thing they’re spin-offs of (ie: the Hogwarts Library textbooks). Steve Tribe writes A Brief History of Time Lords from the point of view of the young boy that the Twelfth Doctor meets at the end of Heaven Sent. This boy grew up and went on to write an “unofficial” history of his planet and people that contained unofficial and forbidden knowledge. It’s a fun concept that’s executed fairly well. The big question with books like this is if they contain enough new material to make it worthwhile, or if they’re just a collection of older material crammed together into one thing so it can be sold for more money. A Brief History of Time Lords kind of fits into both categories. But, at least, it’s enjoyable. (more…)

Luck of the Irish (American Gods S01E07 “A Prayer for Mad Sweeney” review)

2560x14401Well, we were bound to encounter a less than stellar episode eventually, and A Prayer for Mad Sweeney is that episode. It’s certainly not bad; in fact, it’s very enjoyable and if it were placed anywhere else besides as the penultimate episode of the season, it would raise from less-than-stellar to good. The problem is that this episode is essentially one long detour from the main plotline right before the season finale. It’s a great story that’s well told, but placing the episode this close to the finale was a mistake. Written by Maria Melnik (and Michael Green and Bryan Fuller) and directed by Adam Kane, A Prayer for Mad Sweeney tells the story of how Mad Sweeney came to America. After her reunion with Shadow (Ricky Whittle) ends far too quickly, Laura (Emily Browning) turns to an unlikely travel companion to find her way back to life, and back to Shadow. Mad Sweeney’s (Pablo Schreiber) long, winding, and often tragic past is explored. (As always, this episode will feature spoilers. You have been warned.)  (more…)

God Save the Queen (Doctor Who S10E09 “Empress of Mars” review)

Doctor Who S10 Ep9 The Empress of MarsWhat happens when a new NASA probe discovers a curious message on the surface of Mars? Well, naturally the Doctor and Bill have to go investigate it, which is exactly what happens in Empress of Mars. Written by Mark Gatiss and directed by Wayne Yip, Empress of Mars follows the Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Bill (Pearl Mackie), and Nardole (Matt Lucas) as they explore Mars after finding “God Save the Queen” written on the surface of the planet. What they discover is rather unexpected: there are Victorian soldiers on Mars. How is this possible? Unwittingly, they awaken Iraxxa, the Ice Queen (Adele Lynch), from her five millennia slumber, leading to an ultimate showdown between two of the most stubborn races ever: Victorian soldiers vs. the Ice Warriors. (As always, this review will contain spoilers. You’ve been warned!) (more…)

In Fair Verona, Betrayal is Everywhere (Still Star-Crossed, Episode 2 review)

rosaline and escalusAt least this episode is better than last week’s episode was. Many of the positive things I had to say about Still Star-Crossed are still very much applicable, but a lot of the negative things I had have been rectified at least a bit. As I’d hoped, this show seems to be one of those that has an awful first episode and then slowly finds its feet and its own voice. That’s not to say it fixed all of its problems; on the contrary, the problems it still has are only more blatant this week, but overall it was a much more enjoyable outing. The Course of True Love Never Did Run Smooth picks up exactly where last week’s left off, with Benvolio (Wade Briggs) discovering Escalus (Sterling Sulieman) and Rosaline (Lashana Lynch) locking lips. With Verona in crisis, Rosaline and Benvolio have no choice but to follow Prince Escalus’ decree to marry one another in an effort to restore peace, which Rosaline struggles to accept. Lady Capulet (Zuleikha Robinson) continues to mourn Juliet’s death but, unsettled by the way she died, is determined to figure out what or who influenced Juliet’s decision. Meanwhile, Livia (Ebonee Noel) and the nurse (Susan Wooldridge) work tirelessly to revive Count Paris (Torrance Coombs), hiding a secret of their own.  (more…)

Life is Great! (American Gods S01E06 – “A Murder of Gods” Review)

2560X1440At the end of A Murder of Gods, Laura tells Salim that life is great. And, to be honest, that’s really indicative of this episode. Life – and all that one can do in life – is great. And this episode is great, too. Written by Seamus Kevin Fahey, Bryan Fuller, and Michael Green and directed by Adam Kane, A Murder of Gods picks up shortly after last week’s Lemon Scented You left off. On the run after the New Gods’ show of force, Shadow (Ricky Whittle) and Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane) seek safe haven with one of Mr. Wednesday’s oldest friends, Vulcan (Corbin Bernsen), God of the Fire and the Forge. (As always, this review contains spoilers! So, if you haven’t seen the episode yet, you’ll probably want to see it before you read any further.)  (more…)

It’s the Power of Love! (Doctor Who S10E08 “The Lie of the Land” Review)

Doctor Who - TruthIs the idea that love will eventually overcome everything cheesy and oftentimes overdone? Yes. But, if done well, it can still be both moving and satisfying. This final part of the “Monk Trilogy” manages to get it right. Written by Toby Whithouse and directed by Wayne Yip, The Lie of the Land concludes the “Monk Trilogy” that was begun with Extremis. In this closing chapter, Earth has been invaded and Bill is living alone, an isolated figure surviving in occupied Britain. The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) is imprisoned and appears to be on the side of the enemy, flooding the airwaves with fake news. Bill(Pearl Mackie) and Nardole (Matt Lucas) must embark on a deadly mission to rescue the Doctor and lead the resistance against the new regime, whatever the cost. (As always, this review will not be spoiler free, so spoilers are ahead!)  (more…)

What Happens in Verona Should Stay in Verona. (Still Star-Crossed – “In Fair Verona…” Review)

WADE BRIGGS, LASHANA LYNCH, STERLING SULIEMANDo you like soap operas? Did you like Romeo and Juliet? Are you a Shakespeare junkie? Are you searching for a guilty pleasure show to watch this summer? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then Still Star-Crossed is probably the show for you! Based on the book by Melinda Taub, Still Star-Crossed tells the story of what happened after the ending of Romeo and Juliet. Verona is in ruins as the feud between House Montague and House Capulet has worsened in the wake of Romeo and Juliet’s deaths. Threats from outside the walls of Verona only seem to be worsening. What’s the new Prince, Escalus (Sterling Sulieman), to do? In an attempt to unify the feuding houses so Verona stands a chance against any invaders, Escalus orders that Benvolio Montague (Wade Briggs) and Rosaline Capulet (Lashana Lynch) are to be married. Naturally, this doesn’t go so well. (Spoilers ahead!)  (more…)