Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Sunday Review

TV this week:

  • Batman: The Brave and the Bold: "Plague of the Prototypes!" - Um, only one prototype, so how is that a plague? Opening teaser was ok, but I felt like we needed to know why Batman was there. Overall, a mildly disappointing episode for me.

  • Battlestar Galactica: "Blood on the Scales" - And the mutiny is taken down. This one was intense almost all the way through, with almost no let up. Baltar's dream scared me a bit at first. And in the end it felt like there was going to have to be an awful lot of cleanup efforts to get back to something they'd call "normal".
  • Battlestar Galactica: "No Exit" - Ellen... wow. I'm not ... wow. The whole final five is explained in great detail in this episode. We finally get all the answers about them. Well, most of the answers. And what will happen when Ellen gets to the colonial fleet and finds out that Saul has been busy? I'm still somewhat stunned by everything, all the interplay. Only one strange note... John Hodgman as a brain surgeon?!?

  • Sarah Jane Adventures: "Lost in Time" - Three linked stories, each one fairly good in and of itself. Sarah Jane is so adamant that ghosts don't exist that I keep expecting someone to slap her with a clue-by-four and tell her that her definition of "ghosts" is too narrow. Eh. Except for that, I enjoyed her tale. When the granddaughter showed up at the end I felt an instant affinity for her. I would like to know a little more about the Captain. All in due time, I guess.

  • Destination Truth: "Haunted Island Ruins/Moroccan Succubus" - First to Micronesia, where they visit ancient ruins that have some serious spirit issues. A little snark, particularly with the vehicle they got to rent... a truck with a tiki hut on the back. They even got pulled over because they were trying to prevent the hut from destroying the roadside trees. I'm not sure about Josh getting sick. You have to wonder if it doesn't have something to do with that stuff he had with the local bigshot earlier. Next they go hunting Aisha Kandisha in Morocco. I like Josh's bucket list item in Casablanca. Heh. Then they hot air balloon it over the Moroccan desert to find a place to camp, then go out there in dune buggies. Wow. That was a fun episode.
  • Destination Truth: "Guam Zombies/Fangalobolo" - In the final episode of the season, Josh and company head to Madagascar to look for giant vampire bats and Guam to hunt zombies! Madagascar is beautiful, and I still think if you take out all the night-vision hunting bits, this show would still be wonderfully watchable just for the culture and good-natured snark. When they get to Guam, they show that off in spades with a visit to the local version of the mall. I was particularly amused by the turtle race. The injuries the team endured entering the sacred valley in Guam was frightening for a seasoned team like these guys. A very entertaining episode, particularly the climbing around in caves bit. That's it for this season, I hope there is another one. Best travel show on television by a mile.

  • Ghost Hunters Halloween Live: The team is in Buffalo New York, with Josh Gates doing the hosting duties. They investigated the Buffalo Central Terminal Station a couple of years ago, and found it to be scary. The usual trappings of the live show are annoying to watch, as is the blatant product placement, but I'm willing to watch the Josh Gates bits just because he doesn't take it too seriously. And, of course, the witness stories at the beginning are pretty cool, too. I was interested in one of the special guests, Meaghan Rath, who is playing the ghost on the American remake of Being Human. The other guests didn't interest me much, but Ben Hansen turned out to be a solid investigator, although his height worked against him. Lots of activity during the night, but nothing that jumped out at me as beyond the norm for this show. I don't usually watch the full Halloween Live episode, but VLC made it easier with an option to watch at 2X the normal speed so I could get past the non-Josh bits faster.

This week's movie was The Secret of Kells. This is a fantastic little movie with very much its own style. It isn't easy to watch at first, but when you get used to the accents and the style it becomes an incredible story that's a feast for the eyes. I *really* enjoyed the music and wished the soundtrack were available in the US in some form other than just a download. Definitely a good one to watch with a friend.

This week's comic book related review is Stardrop, a collection of newspaper comics done by Thieves & Kings creator Mark Oakley. The story is about Galactic Empire Princess Ashelle, who doesn't like violence and so hides on a planet her father gave her... Earth. As is usual with Oakley's work, the characters are fun and quickly become real and distinct. The artwork is clean and does a good job of telling the story. The whole thing seems to end a little abruptly, but there's a good reason for that and it's all explained both within the strip then further explained in a note at the end from the author. I greatly enjoyed this, and wouldn't mind seeing another collection someday.

My library book this week was 1,000 Comic Books You Must Read by Tony Isabella. There is a fatal flaw with this book. It doesn't tell the reader how to get these comic books one must read. And while I understand perfectly why, it is more than a little frustrating to read a great summary by Isabella and then realize there is almost no chance of laying hands on that book any time soon. This is also not a good book to check out of the library. This is one that belongs on your own personal reference shelf. So yeah, it's a great book, but I found it very hard to read knowing that I can't read the books he's describing.