Buffy Rewatch: S1 Ep1 & 2

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Titles:
Welcome to the Hellmouth
The Harvest

I started to rewatch Buffy with a group of students in school. I figured the girls needed to see a role model who wasn’t from Love Island or battling against the ‘lets be PC’ method of making TV.
Every week we squeezed into one lunch and after school session. They were amazed that I know some of the lines pitch perfect, they were shocked at what passed for fashion in the 90s, but they love it and were always begging for ‘one more’.

Welcome to the Hellmouth

That opening scene. It will always be like a sucker punch to me. Tropes are so-called for a reason. Even with the current horror resurgence, conventions are set in celluloid. This first vampire attack bends all expectations and even 20 years on, it still feels refreshing.

Buffy is introduced with a parting nightmare directly after the guitar from the credits patters out. With the vibe of a popular kid who wasn’t looking to start again, its easy to see that she’s been through something that’s humbled her. Buffy”s passing initiation with Cordelia ends with her being so uncomfortable at Cordelia’s jibes directed at Willow. It’s a testament to Sarah Michelle Gellar’s performance. Not many actresses could pull off this conflicted nature with sincerity.
We hit the 25 minute mark and I’m very happy to see that, much like Harry Potter, she’s alright at deciding who her friends are, thank you very much. Of course, while Buffy didn’t want to leave her school life and popularity behind there is that pesky little problem she was hoping to avoid.

Buffy’s reminder of her duties as the slayer comes dressed in tweed. Anthony Stewart Head, the Gold Blend Ad man, was back on my TV. As much as I love Giles, I never quite understand how he got the top Watcher job. From all the contact we see him have with the Watcher’s Council, it’s made clear that they don’t think much of him. So why is he looking after the one and only Slayer and not behind a desk?!

Buffy and Giles’ relationship is one of my favourites on the show; it works well and on so many levels. Although, watching now there are some times when I wonder how this middle-aged man got away with spending so much time with the Scooby Gang.

Welcome to the Hellmouth sees Buffy admit there is no escaping her calling and the episode ends with Willow heading into certain danger after taking advice from Buffy. We’re reintroduced to Darla; the vamp from the opening who takes Jessie down into the sewers, while Willow is saved. It’s a perfect cliffhanger if you watch it as a standalone. However, it did air in the UK as a mini movie which works just as well.

Of course, we can’t talk about this first episode without mentioning the fan-favourite welcoming gift; Angel. Myserious, brooding and apparently the definition of beautiful. I’ve never seen it myself, but seeing my students swoon, I guess I can’t deny that he still has it.

The Harvest

This episode is such a well structured compliment to episode before. It hits the ground running and within the once scenes we get a demonstration of Willow’s technological skill set. It’s these early episodes and setting up strong character traits and relationship foundations that will allow for some epic story telling.

Not only do we see Willow being established, we are already seeing character development. Thanks to Buffy, Willow is already learning to stand up to Cordelia. It’s wonderful and perfectly Willow.

There are two flaws for me in this episode and they both revolve around the death of characters; Jessie and Luke.

For the show, it was a stroke of genius, but for me I really hate that we lose Jessie so early. It’s a massive blow to lose someone you think is going to be a main player. It’s actually a shame they didn’t have the forethought to have his name in the opening credits to reinforce this. It does demonstrate that no one is safe from death and sets a tone for the series.

Luke, on the other hand was perhaps a mistake along with how the whole of series one pans out. More on this when I get to the end of the series. Luke should have stuck around for the remaining 10 episodes thought; he was a good little bad, if not a little dumb when it came to sunrise. Although it must be said that he does give Buffy a well choreographed fight scene and some excellent quips that will become synonymous with the Vampire Slayer.

It ends with the status quo back in play; even those who were at the Bronze act as if nothing has happened. Something that will crop up time after time, along with the quad walk and talk.

And just like that, we’re all doomed…

Love Han x

Film Review: When We First Met (2018)

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Length: 1Hr 37
Rating: 12
About: After spending a night with the girl of his dreams only to become just friends, a man gets the opportunity to travel through time and alter that night over and over again until he gets everything perfect.

The Good

  • It’s an amazing cast, fronted by Jack Blabk-lite Adam DeVine giving us his best leading man smize. He’s charming, funny and not beyond playing the goof.
  • This is the sort of film that cinemas are missing on their schedules; a good, nostalgic and gimmicky rom-com that wreaks of Big, About Time and Groundhog Day. It’s sweet and inoffensive.

The Bad

  • There’s some scenes that are a little too cringe to be entertaining; from taking advice from his wing man, to consequential frosted tips.

The Ugly

  • I couldn’t see quite how they were going to get DeVine’s Noah and Alexandra Daddario’s Avery together; Robbie Amell was never going to be the bad guy. So it was too much of a surprise that his true love interest was in almost all the scenes too. It felt as if it was tacked on the end. It felt fake ad didn’t give me that heartwarming feeling I normally get with a romance.

Final Thoughts

Great potential, sound premise but such poor execution.

Love Han x

Book Review: Slayer by Kiersten White

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Publisher: Simon and Schuster UK Children’s
Pages: 416
Release date: 21st February 2019
About: Into every generation a Slayer is born…
Nina and her twin sister, Artemis, are far from normal. It’s hard to be when you grow up at the Watcher’s Academy, which is a bit different from your average boarding school. Here teens are trained as guides for Slayers—girls gifted with supernatural strength to fight the forces of darkness. But while Nina’s mother is a prominent member of the Watcher’s Council, Nina has never embraced the violent Watcher lifestyle. Instead she follows her instincts to heal, carving out a place for herself as the school medic.
Until the day Nina’s life changes forever.
Thanks to Buffy, the famous (and infamous) Slayer that Nina’s father died protecting, Nina is not only the newest Chosen One—she’s the last Slayer, ever. Period.
As Nina hones her skills with her Watcher-in-training, Leo, there’s plenty to keep her occupied: a monster fighting ring, a demon who eats happiness, a shadowy figure that keeps popping up in Nina’s dreams…
But it’s not until bodies start turning up that Nina’s new powers will truly be tested—because someone she loves might be next.
One thing is clear: Being Chosen is easy. Making choices is hard.

What a wonderful addition to the Buffy franchise.

It remained true to canon and everything a reader would know of Slayers, Watchers and everything that goes bump in the night. The plot is delightfully unique while adding in familiar names without making it feel forced. There’s nods to so many family’s within the show and we get an insight to where some fan favourites are. While I haven’t caught up with Whedon’s comic continuation, I’m well read enough to sense that this story is faithful to the Dark Horse comic seasons 8 onwards.
As a reader I was hooked from the first chapter and really warmed to all the characters from the outset. The mystery element was what made me frantic to get to the end; my heart in my mouth and constantly trying to predict the outcome.
I could see this as a TV series and Kiersten White made that very easy; the action was well written and incorporated into an expertly-told story. It’s a well rounded stand alone, with enough intrigue, mystery and plot left unexplored to want more.
I felt like I was living the best parts of my teen years while reading this book; it gave me a sense nostalgia that has me regretting gifting my Buffy book collection to family members. I just can’t wait for what happens next and rereading those who have softened the wait.

Love Han x

TV REVIEW Star Trek Discovery: Series 2 Episode 5 Saints of Imperfection

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The episode opens up on Michael’s face and wow, this is the first of many examples within the episode that demonstrates that all the actors can convey so much without uttering a word. Both Michael and Stamets break my heart in that opening scene. I do find it interesting that over the next 20 minutes or so the crew are attempting to establish that Tilly is still alive. It was something I never questioned.

The episode really brings the dialogue to the forefront; most of my notes are simply quotes; from Michael’s log insisting ‘I want to have faith. In it’s absence, only duty remains.’ and Section 31 opperative downgrading of Pike’s concerns ‘there are always lives at stake, that’s what keeps us employed.’
Of course, the most important part of dialogue comes from Pike when he informs the crew of Stamets’ plan to rescue Tilly from the mycelial network. Pike’s speech about Starfleet being a promise is a recurring theme that spans the rest of the episode and ensures the two halves join together effortlessly.

The visuals in this episode are incredible; the drop of the apple seems strangely important but regardless it was a beautiful cut. Then there was the visuals when Discovery is acting as a doorstop to the network. I want that image on my wall. It’s these clean and effective visuals that make this stand out from the rest of the franchise.

Of course, it’s the actors that make this show the addictive watch that its become. This episode had a lot of people to play with and they all bring their A game. Not only that, but the episode doesn’t feel bloated or strained. There are very few shows who could manage such a big cast in one episode without loosing some of the quality. Obviously, there are some standout performances and amazing returns, but no one flounders. The one shame of the episode is that Reno disappears from last week’s episode and I really would have liked to see her help Stamets as it feels odd.

Then, just when I can’t think the episode can get any better I start to get a sneaky feeling the monster Tilly has been brought into the Network to kill is Hugh! Amazing Hugh, who was taken from the crew mid series last year in a shocking reveal and cover up. The added blow of Wilson Cruz bowing out was that Rapp lost the person he had the best chemistry with. Yes, it gave Rapp a wonderful gift of character development but I wasn’t ready to lose Hugh.
I can’t quite work out if Hugh’s return was planned or fan wish fulfillment and that is exactly how it should be. Most importantly, I don’t care either way because it’s been so well written that I believe it. It also has me thinking; is it the real Hugh or is it a clone? Most importantly, will that have consequences? I can’t wait to find out. I can’t wait to see Rapp and Cruz working together and I’m very curious as to the backlash of Ash being back on board.

Final Thoughts

This episode felt very much like a game of chess; players are being moved and ready for what I suspect is going to be an action-fueled climax. We even got an appearance of Admiral Cornwell who orders Captain Pike and Section 31 leader Leland to play nice and work together to find Spock.

Love Han x

MCU Retrospective: Incredible Hulk (2008)

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Length: 2Hr 15
Rating: 12
About: Scientist Bruce Banner (Edward Norton) desperately seeks a cure for the gamma radiation that contaminated his cells and turned him into The Hulk. Cut off from his true love Betty Ross (Liv Tyler) and forced to hide from his nemesis, Gen. Thunderbolt Ross (William Hurt), Banner soon comes face-to-face with a new threat: a supremely powerful enemy known as The Abomination (Tim Roth).

The Good

  • Ed Norton, upon reflection, was quite a good Bruce Banner. He brings the angst and turns it into a fine art; guilt, longing and regret are high and it gives you all the feels. While he’s not as good as Mark Ruffalo’s Assemble/Ulton Banner, he’s much better than the clusterfuck that is Infinity War. Norton’s strength comes from him being able to show how much of a toll the change takes on his physical self; something I feel has been shelved in Phases 2 and 3.
  • I love how the film ends; yes it feels like he hasn’t made any progress by being back on the run, but I love that he seems much more at peace with himself; that smile and green tinged eyes say it all.
  • We get that Tony Stark sting. It doesn’t fit for me with what I know of SHIELD and what’s to come. That said, its Rob D J! I’m not going to sniff at that.
  • EASTER EGG!!! We get Stan Lee (Obviously), but the geek touch that adds to this is having Lou Ferrigno in a small cameo.
  • Liv Tyler is a brilliant addition to the film as Betty Ross which makes me feel like a traitor as I loved Jennifer Connolly in the original. Tyler makes the character her own, brings an element of ‘bad ass’ Connolly’s version lacked and I had a chuckle at her freak out that is reminiscent of the melt down she has in Empire Records .

The Bad

  • Tim Roth makes for an excellent anti-hero, and I welcome his presence for *most* of the movie. Unfortunately, he makes for a piss poor villain. More on this later.
  • Well, General Ross is beyond a dick and I really hate that there’s no resolution of the character. He isn’t redeemed, he isn’t completely vilified. By the end of the movie he’s asked to join Stark on a SHIELD project. This would all be fine if there was a payoff in a later movie, but there’s not. I’m just so frustrated.
  • The story is decent enough; there’s the McGuffin of Mr Blue and Banner’s desire for a cure. However, the execution feels a little too “been there, done that” when it comes to the villain, especially after watching Iron Man directly before it. Again, I’ll come back to this in a moment.

The Ugly

  • I really didn’t like Bruce Banner testing the size of a pair of pants on the backside of a larger lady. Not cool, Banner, not cool!
  • Abomination! Its an ironically apt name. As I said before, Tim Roth is a good choice and a brilliant anti-hero, but Abomination is a CGI nightmare. Riffing Iron Man’s final act; it’s the ‘bigger, scarier, more teeth’ version of the Hulk.
  • Emil Blonsky is set up as loyal military man so I just don’t understand why he goes against General Ross so quickly. When he becomes Abomination, he retains his thoughts and understanding (or at least that’s what is implied) so he is exactly what Ross wanted. So why on earth does he go on a rampage. Hulk has more motive to attack General Ross. I also don’t understand his motivation for attacking Hulk. Yes, before he doesn’t like what Hulk represents, but as Abomination they’re fucking brothers.
  • There’s no explanation of what modifications have taken place for Abomination to be so different. Why is he talking and why is the voice so shit?! And why, oh why, is it only Banner who takes responsibility for the actions that led to the existence of Abomination?!

Final Thoughts

Ed Norton isn’t too shabby as Bruce Banner, but on the whole it really isn’t the best installment in the MC universe.

Love Han x

Movie Review: Little Shop of Horrors Director’s Cut (1986)

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I find a little giggle-gas before I begin increases my pleasure enormously.

Orin

Length: 1Hr 42
Rating: PG
About: Meek flower shop assistant Seymour (Rick Moranis) pines for co-worker Audrey (Ellen Greene). During a total eclipse, he discovers an unusual plant he names Audrey II, which feeds only on human flesh and blood. The growing plant attracts a great deal of business for the previously struggling store. After Seymour feeds Audrey’s boyfriend, Orin (Steve Martin), to the plant after Orin’s accidental death, he must come up with more bodies for the increasingly bloodthirsty plant.

First Thoughts

I’ve probably seen the first 45 minutes of this more than the whole thing. I think this was one of my Thursday night films along with Jurassic Park and Beauty and the Beast. My dad wanted to watch it as it’s not been on TV for a long time. I accidentally put on the Director’s Cut without realising.

The Good

  • Rick Moranis is the perfect casting as Seymour. In fact, watching this made me a little sad that he’s no longer making movies after being in so many of my favourites from my childhood.
  • There’s some amazing cameos. From Christopher Guest and Bill Murray who have larger speaking roles to Danny John-Jules and Miriam Margoyles who are so blink-and-you’ll-miss-it that an internet search was needed to confirm suspicions (Read: win an arguement with my father who claimed it was in no way possible Danny John-Jules was in it).
  • The effects and puppetry regarding Audrey II all still hold up today. I’m not certain a GCI rendering would have the same impact, showing that things may have progressed but physical props can’t always be beaten.
  • There are some brilliant songs that you will want to dance along with. It’s up beat music, complete with a Chorus is a little infectious to say the least.

The Bad

  • Yes, there are some amazing songs, but the mid section of this Broadway adaptation feel a little flat and more like time fillers. It’s a shame as it pulls you out of the story a little.
  • Ellen Greene’s voice is like water torture. It doesn’t help me feel sympathy like I did as a kid. I’m not certain if it’s a natural voice or something that’s put on. Either way, I could do without it.

The Ugly

  • Well, the ending. Gone is the the green lawn and the perfect house. Both Audrey and Seymour are eaten by the monster hell-bent on world domination. We then see Audrey II and her offspring montage the Attack of the 50 Ft Woman. It’s horrific, sad and so not the ending we deserve.

Final Thoughts

It mostly stands up to viewing 33 years after being made. Just make sure you click ‘Theatrical cut’ if you’re given the option so that Seymour and Audrey get to live long and happy lives, somewhere that’s green.

Love Han x

Book Review The Extinction Trials: Rebel by S. M Wilson

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Publisher: Usborne
Pages: 368
Release Date: 7.2.2019
About: Betrayal. Sacrifice. Survival. Welcome to The Extinction Trials.
Storm and Lincoln’s city is burning. The people are starving. The only place left to run is Piloria, the continent of monsters. It’s up to Storm and Lincoln to keep their people alive as they colonize this lethal paradise. But will the biggest threat to their survival be the monsters in the jungle…or the ones inside the encampment with them?
The Hunger Games meets Jurassic Park in this wildly popular series filled with action, survival and betrayal.

Okay… So I finished this book over a week ago and I’ve not been able to sit down and write this review. Mainly because to write it, is to admit that this amazing ride that has taken my blog through its book review infancy is over. It was the first book in which a publisher reached out and asked that I take part in a blog tour and I got to host a wonderful Q&A with S. M. Wilson. I don’t want this book series to be over, I am currently cursing past me from willing the books out faster. Damn, not only would I have waited the Harry Potter standard of 2 years between books for S. M. Wilson’s talented writing, I’d have RR Martin waited for them.

Enough of my end-of-series grief. Lets get down to what you are all here for: does it live up to the others and how quickly should you be adding it to your TBR?

The simple answer is that not only does it live up to the 2018 outing and its sequel, it surpasses it. Not only is the reader given an excellent, movie worthy, sequel its a well crafted ending to a series. There’s scares, screams and tears a plenty as time is given to all the characters we’ve met so far. As with Exile, Rebel gives us what we expect without playing the game by numbers and retreading the same plot.

My heart was in my mouth from the opening chapter and the pace never let up for a single second, which is how I found myself hitting the last page at 3am Sunday night/ Monday morning; the same day I’d bought it. There’s payoffs, there’s shocks and there’s even creatures I’m too afraid of to mention their names.

I don’t want to mention too many details about the plot, as I’d hate to ruin anything I enjoyed reading but what I will say is that those fans from the start will be left satisfied with how the series ends. I’d also like to point out that, intentional or not, there are still questions and scope for further adventures within this crafted world. I’m not saying Wilson has to start writing another. No, she’s done something so much more for us. She’s provided an imagination playground for plot bunnies to run wild. Certainly for me, if I wasn’t strictly on a ‘no fan fiction’ writing diet while I get my own fictions off the ground; I’d so be penning something set in this world. I don’t know about anyone else, but for me a truly good writer not only gives you a world to escape to, but they create a spark within the imagination.

One final thing I will say, is that I cannot wait for Wilson has in store for us. This has been an amazing trilogy that should be picked up by a film company post haste. S. M. Wilson has a fan for life, and I only hope I can write half as well as her; chapter fourteen of Rebel is hands down the best chapter I’ve ever read and I’ve kept coming back and rereading it all week.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve read the others, buy this book. If you’ve read none of them; buy them all and clear your diary and TBR. It’s a book series that will take pride of place on your bookshelf and, for me, will be a yearly re-read for decades to come.

Love Han x

Movie Review: King of Thieves (2018)

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Length: 1Hr 48
Rating: 15
About: A crew of retired crooks pulls off a major heist in London’s jewellery district, but what begins as a nostalgic last hurrah for the group quickly becomes a brutal nightmare when greed overtakes them.

The Good

  • I can’t fault Michael Caine. He’s brilliant and I know most of my experience of him is as a mentor and fatherly figure. Even Now You See Me, is tame compared to his Get Carter roots. It’s good to see him in a modern heist movie and he certainly seems at home.
  • It’s certainly an antidote to the fast paced action blockbusters that are saturating our box office. Having the heist done by a group of aging men who have lived their life on the silver screen is refreshing.
  • On that note, its really funny. Between the British geezer humour and the commentary of how times have changed, there’s not a scene goes by without a chuckle. It’s best seen in the group preparing for the first night of the heist.
  • There’s quite a nice touch seen with the use of footage from older heist movies; making connections between the behaviours then, and now.
  • You can’t deny; its quite a cast they’ve gotten together to play cops and robbers on screen for a few hours. You can tell they’re all having fun and it just adds to the viewer’s enjoyment.

The Bad

  • I’m not sold on Charlie Cox’s performance and I can’t put my finger on what it is. I know that while the others know who they are portraying, Cox had nothing. However, it does have what I feel is a little inconsistency. The meekness and jittery demeanor doesn’t mesh with the actions in the later part of the movie. I was almost waiting for a
    Keyser Soze type change in personality that matched with the ‘mastermind’ status Basil is given.

The Ugly

  • Did I really need to see Gambon and Courtenay converse in the whirlpool?! Did we need that many iterations of the word ‘cunt’? Well, not really but part of me likes that the film didn’t really hold back.

Final Thoughts

It’s a decent watch that i’ll most likely pop on again at some point, but I think the most to be gained from it for me, is a motivation to see all of the main players in some of their earlier films.

Love Han x

Movie Review: Raising Helen (2004)

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That’s right. Shoe-tying is tough. Why do you think Jesus wore sandals?

Length: 1Hr 59
Rating: PG
About: Single and self-involved, Helen Harris (Kate Hudson) has a thriving fashion career and a lavish lifestyle in New York City. Helen is shocked to hear that her sister and brother-in-law have died in an accident, and alarmed that they have named her the guardian of their three kids (Hayden Panettiere, Spencer Breslin, Abigail Breslin). As the children struggle with the change, Helen has to decide whether she’ll cling to her old ways or come to terms with her new family role.

The Good

  • It’s an upbeat alternative to Beaches with an Uncle Buck vibe to it. Kate Hudson and John Corbett are beautiful leads. I’m not sure why I avoided Hudson’s films when they were being released; I certainly missed out.
  • It’s crazy to watch this film 15 years after the fact and see the young faces of the three orphaned siblings; while I’ve not caught Spencer Breslin in much since the early thousands, Hayden Panettiere has very rarely left the screen and Abigail Breslin was most recently seen alongside other child stars in Scream Queens.
  • It has a happy enough ending. What more do you want from this romantic comedy that has cameos from the director’s stable.

The Bad

  • This film is coming at the end of the romantic comedy roll out. As a result, it feels a little cliqued and tired. It’s a paint-by-number plot with very little variation.
  • As much as I love both Hudson and Corbett’s characters and their individual delivery, there’s zero chemistry and it really shows.

The Ugly

  • It’s a personal thing, but why have someone as amazing as Felicity Huffman cast to not use her fully. Man, I am gutted that she’s the sister that died.
  • Joe Mazzello was not in nearly enough to justify me watching this. One scene and then zip, nothing.

Final Thoughts

This really isn’t one of Gary Marshall’s best offerings and even playing “Whose from his acting stable?” Was enough to rescue this film and make it one that i’d watch again.

Love Han x

TV REVIEW Star Trek Discovery: S2 Ep4 (An Obol for Charon)

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What an episode. Okay, plot wise we don’t get much by way of progression. However, we have so much character and relationship development and it’s beyond perfect.

Saru

Saru is our main character in this episode. Upon being held captive by an organic entity, Saru’s biology betrays him and he begins to go into what he believes to be a terminal condition. What I loved about this thread was that we learnt even more about Saru’s species and how he ended up working within the Federation. It’s quite a heartbreaking watch and Doug Jones demonstrates his skills; not only is he able to embody the pain and empathy that Saru feels, there’s something hypnotic about watching his broken body struggle around Discovery.
The joy at the final act reveal is only surpassed by what it might mean for the character. We’ve had 19 episodes with an alien who is susceptible to fear and was the embodiment of caution. Without this and discovering everything he knew of his species was a lie, I can’t help but wonder what lies ahead for this character.

Tilly, Stamets and Reno

I’ve missed snarky Stamets. It’s been too long since we’ve witnessed a closed and stand-offish engineer. I have obviously enjoy the character break down the walls and warm up to those who work closest to him, but it was a joy to see him clash with Tig Notaro’s Jett Reno.
How they spar over the way they see the future of technology is wonderful, and one that is played just right. Its a play that could have gotten old fast, if it was handled by lesser talent. I’m hoping this is the start of a beautiful friendship; when it comes down to it it is a balance of both of their insights that they need. When things that got critical, they bounced off each other as all good scientists do.

“Hey kiddo…” Have I said that I love the growing relationship between Stamets and Tilly? It’s something that I don’t feel we’ve seen with such sincerity in a Trek franchise before. The care and trust that the actors bring to the characters is heart warming. Although, their rendition of Space Oddity was beautiful and haunting. It almost had me in tears to think that Stametts was using it as a form of distractions.

And of course, there’s a bit of a game changer to the resolution of this plot thread. In a Stranger Things/ Shawshank homage, we discover that Stammets wasn’t completely successful in keeping Tilly safe. I dread to consider how we’ll find Stamets when we pick up again next week.

Saru and Michael

I have never cried at Star Trek. I think as a kid I was relatively detached from the shows to be so emotionally involved. However, there’s a few things in the show that really had me invested in the relationship of these two characters and what each was experiencing while Saru was facing death.

Firstly, we’ve seen from the first series that Discovery has no hesitation in killing off its main crew so I did spend the entire episode believing that this was the last we’d see of Saru and Doug Jones. Throughout the franchise we’ve seen semi-regular characters die; Tasha Yar springs to mind and there is also the shocking departure of Terry Farrell in Deep Space Nine. However, its very rare to see a main character leave so early in a show. I’m completely in disagreement with my father; upon finishing the episode he expressed that they took it too close to death to u-turn. I think it was necessary in order to show how much the relationship between Saru and Michael had grown and the impact it’ll have on Michael’s relationship with Spock.
I loved the whole thread that saw Michael caring for Saru, but it was that death-bed scene that caused me to cry. I can’t help but compare it to Eastenders and the heartbreaking scene between Dot and Ethel all those years ago. Saru was requesting Michael participated in voluntary euthanasia. The words weren’t said, it wasn’t used as a way of looking at it in a political way but it still held the emotional gravitas. As a relationship, Saru and Michael have progressed, in such a short space of time, from at-odds colleagues to friends, and now family. It was beautiful and will be something that can only get better.

Final Thoughts

I still have reservations about the Spock story arc. It’s nothing to do with the storytelling, at all. It’s just that I can’t help but feel like I’m in the middle of a puzzle and I’m sure I missed something. I know I have to be patient, I know by the time series 2 is wrapped up I’ll be satisfied… but, well lets put it this way; if I was a Kelpien, my ganglia would be showing.

Love Han x

Movie Review: Capricorn One (1979)

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Length: 2Hr 4Min
Rating: PG
About: Three astronauts (James Brolin, Sam Waterston, O.J. Simpson) are about to launch into space on the first mission to Mars. But when a mechanical failure surfaces that would kill the three men, NASA removes them from the Capricorn One capsule. To prevent a public outcry, NASA launches the capsule unmanned and requires the astronauts to film fake mission footage in a studio. However, the plan is compromised when an ambitious journalist (Elliott Gould) discovers the conspiracy.

The Good

Bloody hell, talk about a legacy cast. There’s nothing better than watching an old school film and recognising people you watch. Not only that, they’re 30 years younger. James Brolin, Elliot Gould and ? all bring their a-game to this chilling political conspiracy thriller. I’d have liked to have seen more from ?, as early parts of the film hint at a comedic side I’ve not seen in his most recent roles.

The film has this delightful slow build of a plot which you simply don’t see getting made in Hollywood nowadays. There’s no heavy pattern or formulaic action sequences. Elliot Gould may take top billing when it comes to the credits, but there’s no clear star driving this plot forward.

In an age where movies are catering for an over-stimulated audience, this is a nice change of pace; it’s atmospheric, chilling and emotive. I’m not ashamed to say, I jumped twice at events I wasn’t expecting. Actually, I yelped too at one and screamed at the other.

The Bad

As I said, there’s no star. Unfortunately while it’s a blessing, it’s also the film’s curse. As a result of no one person being followed, the plot feels overly choppy and, at times, hard to follow. It also gave the film an overall uneasy feeling and while I don’t personally like it, I can’t deny that it adds to the whole film.

The Ugly

why was the on-trend colour of the 70s all shades of brown? Literally everything in this film; from costumes to sets was brown. This is such a personal thing but picking a colour palate because it’s in fashion dates a film and it’s a shame because the theme and conspiracy at the heart of this movie has a timeless ‘fake news’ quality about it.

Love Han x