I already had my review for this week picked out, but then something so momentous happened that I needed to write about it, instead. One of the best shows currently on television had a crossover with my favorite show of all-time. I am speaking, of course, about this past week’s episode of The Office.
For several years now, there have been rumors about a possible cameo or two by characters from the original BBC version of The Office. So many promises have been made that, when I heard that Ricky Gervais might be reprising his role as David Brent, I had dismissed it as just another false rumor.
Well, I was wrong, because this week Steve Carell’s Michael Scott met David Brent in a chance encounter. It was short but sweet, and it was worth the wait.
So, if, in the last two weeks, I’ve spoken to you in person . . . or on the phone . . . or over email, text, or Twitter . . . or if you’ve seen any of my updates on Facebook . . . or if you’ve casually eavesdropped on any conversation to which I’ve contributed . . . or even if you’ve actively ignored me while within earshot, then you probably have heard about The IT Crowd starring Katherine Parkinson, Richard Ayoade, and Chris O’Dowd. And, you probably don’t need to read this blog (you still could though), because you’ve more than likely heard me spewing a mixture of praises, quotes, and instructions on where to find this hilarious British sitcom from writer/director Graham Linehan. You may or may not recognize Lineham as the successful creator of two other UK sitcoms, Black Books and Father Ted, but, suffice it to say, he has grown into quite the sitcom heavyweight across the pond, having won numerous BAFTAs and even an International Emmy. I can’t speak to these earlier shows, but his third major foray into the wide world of situation comedy is just brilliant, and you have to check it out! I’m not kidding; you can finish reading this, but then, seriously, go check the show out. It’s easy! The first three series’ are streaming on Netflix, so there you go. Wait. Let me actually finish this for real. The fourth season is only available on DVD, and millions of people are very excited that the fifth and sixth series have recently been confirmed for production.
Microsoft produced seven animated shorts that take place within the Halo universe and collected them all into this thrilling collection called Halo: Legends, which is currently streaming live through Netflix. It seems almost like an experiment to test the possibility of a Halo TV show because of the varying styles and tones exhibited. One short goes beyond campy and clearly targets young children, while another has cursing and close-ups on extreme violence. (The victims may be bad guys that bleed green blood, but, when a knife pushes into a skull, it affects you). These shorts are sure to excite the die-hard Halo fans; however, they are all well produced and will be highly enjoyable to anyone interested in adult animated shorts, be you a Halo fan or not.
First and foremost, since I didn't mention it in my first review, I HAVE to point out how awesome and heavy the Drums are during the opening Star Wars theme! Sounds so epic and gives Clone Wars its own vibe. Plus, it's the only John Williams-type score from the movies that was put into the show. Then, we get, as we fans refer to it, "The Fortune Cookie." The words of wisdom placed before us at the beginning of each episode. This week’s Fortune Cookie says, "Evil Is Not Taught, It Is Learned..." Some people don't give enough attention to the Fortune Cookie and how it relates to the episode. This one is a major one...
In last week’s episode, Dooku was deceived into believing it was the Jedi who attacked him, so that he would look for a new assassin from Mother Talzin; a male assassin this time. I've poked around the internet forums to see if people thought Dooku was aware he was being manipulated or if he actually had no idea. Turns out most think the same way I do. Dooku may be powerful, but it seemed he honestly had no idea he was being deceived. And, what is the past between Mother Talzin and the Nightsisters/brothers? There is a past they aren't telling us. Also, Dooku was not in the least hesitant to drink the beverage Talzin so casually conjured up with her Witchcraft. There has to be some sort of past bond here.
Being the lucky, little Cylon that I am, I managed to nab a seat at the Return of the Cylons: Caprica Season 1.5 Premiere Fan Event at the Globe Theater in Universal Studios - Hollywood last weekend. It was quite the event, what with the red carpet rolled out and a number of the cast and crew attending, including actors Esai Morales (Joseph Adama), Sasha Roiz (Sam Adama), and Alessandra Torresani (Zoe Graystone). Executive producers David Eick, Ronald D. Moore, Jane Espenson, and Kevin Murphy were also in attendance and brought an extra dose of excitement to the event.
It’s not often that fans can so easily mingle with cast and crew, especially given the “geek celebrity” status that Ronald D. Moore and David Eick acquired with the Battlestar Galactica series. Everyone was approachable at the event, and, when we entered the screening room, a bar was set up allowing a more relaxed place to converse with each other. Once the ice was broken, it was a geek’s paradise! Actor Esai Morales was especially friendly, excited, and passionate about the event and the series, encouraging everyone to implore their friends to watch the show and make a second season possible. Morales’ dedication to the project was also very clear when he stopped to show us pictures on his cell phone of his newborn baby girl. His first child having been born just days ago, Morales was understandably eager to be with wife and child; yet, he spent the next few hours fully committed to creating a fun and exciting environment for the fans of Caprica. He’s truly a stand up guy in addition to being an excellent actor! Sasha Roiz soon joined Morales in schmoozing with the fans and turned out to be a delight.
If you haven’t seen Fawlty Towers, the BBC-produced sitcom, don’t even bother, you monkey-brained twit. You probably wouldn’t understand it, seeing as it was written for people with an intellect equal to or greater than that of a 6-year-old child. No, you probably would find the show, written by Connie Booth and John Cleese, quite dull, as there are no gratuitous explosions or women baring their chests. Instead, the show follows an extremely clever, handsome, and hard-working intellectual and hotelier called Basil Fawlty”(me) as I struggle to imbue my seaside hotel, Fawlty Towers, with a teensy speck of respectability and class, but for some reason that is too much to ask, (ahem) Sybil.
Sybil (Prunella Scales), my wife, occasionally ceases gossiping over the telephone long enough to smile at the “riff-raff” that pass through our hotel, while I struggle night and day in the trenches. But no, Sybil, don’t get up! Attend to your social life, my “little nest of vipers,” that is, after all, what’s important, much more so than our livelihood.
The fifth season of Dexter came to a close last week. While I was excited by many things this season, the end result was fairly predictable, leaving some fans worried whether the writers still have more ways to explore our favorite serial killer. While watching Dexter struggle with Rita’s death was painful and compelling, it also felt disjointed. Lumen was an excellent addition to the cast and provided a twisted Batman and Robin relationship to explore, but they barely scratched the surface with the storytelling possibilities that a young protege provided before writing the character’s exit. Now, this season wasn’t a complete loss! Along with the interesting story elements that I just mentioned, there was also the excellent and frightening performance of Johnny Lee Miller as Jordan Chase, the self-help villain of the season. Leading a group of men who were successful in their public lives but who, in private, would sexually brutalize and kill young women, Jordan Chase and his partners were the kind of bad guys one loved to see in Dexter’s slide collection. As great as it was to watch Dexter and Lumen cut their bloody path through this despicable group, the story is starting to be old hat after five seasons.
Since we know that the show has been given another season by Showtime, here are my five recommendations to pump some new blood into Dexter and keep the show going strong!
The final chapter in the Savage Opress arc. Sorry for the delay, folks, but I went on vacation and then had A LOT of work to catch up on! So, on with Part 3 entitled “Witches of the Mist!!”
Our "fortune cookie," as we refer to it in the Clone Wars community, at the beginning of this episode is "The path to evil may bring great power, but not loyalty." And, this episode proves it. First and foremost, we get a glimpse at Republic Commandos! Oh yeah! They only make an appearance, but it's exciting to think about how much we will see them in the future. Republic Commandos was a favorite X-Box game of mine, so it was cool to see them incorporated into the show. Upon looking on the dead bodies Obi-Wan says to Plo-Koon, "This is not the work of a Sith Lord, or a Jedi, but a reckless impulsive animal." I LOVED that description of Savage. They still have no idea what they are up against.
A few months back, I had the privilege of attending the special Star Wars: Clone Wars movie screening of the Savage Opress story arc. Here I was, able to see awesome new Clone Wars episodes on the big screen, months before they would air on TV! Needless to say, I was blown away. Season 3 of the Clone Wars has been kind of hard to take in. It was basically politics, politics, politics. If I had to hear the word "corruption" one more time, I was going to tear my hair out. But, after seeing the Savage "movie," my faith was restored.
The first episode, entitled "Nightsisters," is the first in the three-part arc, all of which was written by Katie Lucas. Yes, that's right, George Lucas' daughter! And, let me tell you, she is definitely her father's daughter. I will refrain from reviewing the whole arc since we still have two more episodes to go, but let me just say that Katie brings an amazing talent to this series and gives Season 3 the kick it needed. This is what Clone Wars should be, and it only gets better from here.
Earlier this month the final five episodes of Caprica were finally released and devoured by the remaining small, yet rabid, fan base. Initially available only on the Caprica Season 1.5 DVD set, SyFy aired all five episodes, back-to-back, a few weeks after. It was an unceremonious ending for such a poignant and intellectual series that got stronger with every passing episode, even till the bitter end.