Hello all you miniature dolls playing out a Greek tragedy and welcome to my review of Hereditary! In case you haven’t heard, this movies been causing a lot of buzz among critics and horror aficionados. With reviews saying things such as, “It’s the best horror movie of 2018, and possibly just the best movie in general,” “Hereditary is a horror movie that’s almost too scary,” and “Hereditary is a deeply upsetting film that will linger with you long after the credits roll,” how could I stay away? So put on your diapers, hold your loved ones close, and get ready for what is sure to be a crazy ride! As always, spoilers ahead. And according to 98% of the reviews you need to go into the movie knowing as little of the story as possible. Although I disagree.
Hello all you poor mooks wrongfully accused of HEINOUS crime! It’s been a while. Sorry about that but real life has this nasty habit of taking over and forcing your attention elsewhere. But then Stephen King released a new book and I dropped everything to read it. Then real life told me to shut up and stop wasting time. It’s been a roller coaster lately. Point is, I read Stephen King’s new book and now I’m gonna talk about it atchoo! Deal? As always, spoilers ahead.
The book is one of dual identities. The first half is a police procedural and a classic locked-room mystery. Beloved small town little league coach Terry Maitland is accused of the brutal murder of a small boy. The case seems open and shut. There are witnesses tracking his every move throughout the day, they find his fingerprints all over the scene, and, worst of all, his semen is at the scene suggesting the crime was sexual. Middle aged Detective Ralph Anderson is convinced by the DA to move quickly and arrest Terry without delay. Worse, Anderson’s son was coached by Terry and, in the heat of the moment and out of anger at the brutality of the crime, Anderson arrests Terry in an incredibly public way. Continue reading “The After Word: The Outsider (SPOILERS)”
Hello all you bastards stabbed at your mother’s breasts, and welcome back to Rewind the Realm! I took a bit of a hiatus due to the emotional fallout of Avengers: Infinity War, but I’m back for more psychological trauma! Why do so many of the things I enjoy cause me such pain? No time for evaluation, I have a show to talk about. Let’s Go!
Robb of War 3: Robb, with a Vengeance
Robb whips his big floppy dick out in front of the captive Jaime Lannister and dares him to suck it. Jaime tries to act cool but you can tell he’s impressed. He reveals that he received Stannis’s letter about all the gross incest he and Cersei have been up to and deduces that this is why Bran was pushed and Ned was killed. Then he monologues about his plans for getting Sansa and Arya back and gaining Northern Independence by using Jaime as a bargaining chip. Then he lets Grey Wind get real close to biting off Jaime’s face. It’s a baller move and even Jaime respects it.
Then he decides to trust Theon despite Theon looking the way he does, and sends him to treat with his father Balon. Then he tells Cat to go treat with that vile traitor Renly to negotiate an alliance. Cat tells him he’s doin good but not to trust Balon. We the audience know just how correct she is. Tears are shed for future tragedy.
We’re fiiiiiiiinally introduced to Iron Man himself, Stannis Baratheon and his red witch Melisandre. More importantly we’re introduced to the suavest man in the West, Davos Seaworth.
Stannis, being a curmudgeonly old bastard is curmudgeoning all over the place about life. He’s pissed off cus he’s the rightful king and nobody will accept him as such. He writes the letters about Lannicestgate and sends them out to everyone in the kingdom, inadvertently coining the term “spilling the tea.” Then he refuses to seek an alliance with Robb or Renly, despite the obvious advantages of doing so. Davos tries to talk him straight but he won’t listen. See: curmudgeoning.
Instead, he lets Melisandre burn all the statues of the Seven on the island and then burn a bunch of loyalists alive. Cus…strategy? Stannis isn’t really good at this whole king thing.
Stannis’s Maester Cressen doesn’t like Melly Sandy for obvious reasons and tries to poison her. But she drinks that poison like the bad bitch she is and doesn’t even flinch. Cressen poisons himself and dies. Melly pours one out for him and goes about her business. Like. A. Boss. I may not agree with or like Melisandre, but the witch is fabulous and she knows it. Respect.
Melly’s presence is here to let us know that just because dragons can kill White Walkers, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a better alternative. Fire kills as easily as ice.
Various Locations That Don’t Warrant Their Own Section
Bran has a dream about being a wolf and goes to the Godswood with Osha. Osha tries to ask about his dreams but he’s all sulky. They see the red comet in the sky and Bran says some people say it’s an omen for victory for Robb. Somehow Osha knows it means dragons are back. This is never explored again.
Beyond the Wall, the Night’s Watch stop at Craster’s Disgusting Incest House. He mocks Jon in ways that seem like foreshadowing but really aren’t. Jeor tells Jon to stay cool cus that’s what leaders do.
In Essos Dany is leading the remainder of her Khalasar across the Red Wastes, Moses style. Horses are dying, people are dying, the dragons refuse to eat meat. Everything’s bad. She sends three Blood Riders in different directions to search for refuge. Jorah stares at Dany a lot and it’s reeeeeeeeeeeeeeal creepy.
The Reign of Joffrey the Cruel
Joffrey kicks off his reign in style by ordering the execution of a drunk knight at his nameday celebration. Sansa, being way better at diplomacy than so many people give her credit for, convinces him to spare his life and make him a fool instead. The Hound swoops in with an assist to make it happen, but it’s all because Sansa was smart and bold at just the right time. I will fight anyone who wants to talk shit about Sansa.
Anyway Tyrion arrives with the letter declaring him Hand of the King and Cersei shits her pants on the spot. He placates her by saying he’ll only be advising, then proceeds to unleash a sick burn when he finds out that she let Arya slip away, all but blaming her if Jaime dies.
Joffrey then confronts Cersei about Stannis’s letter cus even Joffrey is grossed out by incest. Then he has all of Robert’s bastards murdered, even the babies. It never outright says who ordered them to be killed. But we all know. The City Watch finds out that one bastard escaped with Yoren and is headed to the Wall. They find this out by torturing Tobho Mott. Literally the only smith capable of working on Valyrian Steel. In the World.
This doesn’t happen in the book because nobody would be stupid enough to torture the only smith capable of fixing your magic swords. Joffrey is not off to a good start.
And so Season 2 begins! I’m not doing the body count for this episode because it’s too depressing. I’m already depressed from Infinity War and YOU CAN’T MAKE ME. The show is still compelling, Stannis hasn’t yet been ruined, Robb is runnin’ things. Life’s good for now. I’m sure it’ll stay that way forever. See ya next week!
Hello all you psychic projections of your dead parent’s ghosts and welcome back to Rewind the Realm! We’ve made it to the end of Season 1 somehow, though Ned’s death still stings. And always will. The final episode of the seasons always have a delicate balance to maintain. They have to push the story forward just enough to be satisfying, but also hold back enough to make people want to see the next season. That’s not really a problem for this season of course because this season ends with MOTHERFUGGIN DRAGONS! Nothin’ gets a fantasy fan frothy quite like dragons! But we’ll get to that. We have other stuff to cover first.
Psychic boy Bran has a dream about his dead ass dad and has Osha carry him down into the crypts. They find other psychic boy Rickon down there already with Shaggydog because he also had a dream about Ned. Then they find out Ned died. And nobody ever brings up the fact that they’re obviously psychic again. Maester Luwin is a putz. But he’s got serious eyebrow game.
Greetings, nerds. Are we all super stoked for the release of Avengers: Infinity War this week?! Of course we are. No one is as excited as Super Hubs, but the rest of us are pulling our weight.
So, that being said, we decided it was absolutely necessary to do some MCU content up on the blog (more than our Jessica Jones S2 review and my post on the similarities between her and Captain America over the last few weeks). You can expect a post-movie rundown as well, but until we get our asses in the seats on Saturday, we thought it would be fun to Sort all the MCU characters we could think of into Hogwarts Houses, a la our “Sorting of Ice and Fire” podcast all that time ago.
Sidebar: We’re working on moving our podcasts to a proper hosting site, but hopefully that won’t affect our presence on iTunes! However, there likely won’t be full posts dedicated to sharing them anymore. We’ll see how we feel!
Anyway! Without further ado . . . LET THE SORTING COMMENCE!
Greetings, all. Nikkie here, all by my lonesome, to straight-up blow your minds with this realization I had recently.
Steve Rogers, aka Captain America, aka a stupid waste of space, and Jessica Jones (their MCU versions, anyway) are REALLY, REALLY FUCKING SIMILAR. Like . . . seriously. Their story arcs, particularly across Civil War and season 2 of Jessica Jones, have a lot of the same beats, and it’s enough to make me wonder if it’s on purpose. With the separation between the films and the Netflix show portion of the MCU, it would make sense to give each one their own anchor. And while I consider Tony Stark to be the main anchor (or Nick Fury) in the movies, an argument can be made for Captain America, and Jessica Jones definitely feels like the anchor of the Netflix shows (even though Daredevil came first).
So! Once I started connecting the dots, I knew it was a blog-worthy theory to share with the world (or the few people who read our blog, anyway). And here we are.
Hello all you nameless soldiers in an endless war and welcome back to Recap the Realm! We’re at episode 9, an episode number that never bodes well in this show, as we’ll come to find. This tends to be where the BIG DRAMATIC EVENT of the seasons occurs and it all started here with perhaps the BIGGEST DRAMATIC EVENT of the show’s entire run. Also this is when my Body Count Tracker of Ultimate Sadness ™ is going to become very difficult to update! So that’ll be fun.
At the Lannister Camp
Tyrion (correctly) assumes that Tywin is trying to get him killed by putting him and the hill tribes in the vanguard. There’s a tactical reason for Tywin’s decision here but it’s still a flimsy justification for him trying to get rid of Tyrion. Tywin’s so dumb. I don’t understand everyone in Westeros considers him such a tactical genius. He’s basically just Zapp Brannigan, sending endless waves of soldiers to die until his enemies are too overwhelmed by dead bodies to fight. Fuck Tywin. Continue reading “Rewind the Realm: Season 1, “Baelor””
Hello all you rebellious blood riders and welcome back to Rewind the Realm! We’re coming to the end of season 1 now and everyone is quickly rushing toward war because they can’t keep their goddamn white privilege in check. Detective Ned, having been betrayed by the skeevy criminal he made an alliance with, sits in jail plotting his next move when he’s met by an unexpected ally. And Jon Snow…Jon Snows. This is the first episode written by Mr. George “Har Har” Martin himself and it shows. It’s primo stuff.
Also I forgot to add Robert to the body count last time!
So, RIP Bobby B. Body count: 22
Now let’s get on with the recappin!
In the Vale
Catelyn’s pissed. She found out about Ned being arrested and asks why Lysa didn’t tell her, since she knew already. Lysa basically says she didn’t tell her because she didn’t feel like it. So Catelyn asks for help from the knights of the vale. Lysa refuses because she’s the worst and, despite being a major part of why the Lannisters and Starks are going to war, she doesn’t believe war is in the Vale’s best interest. And she wants to protect her weirdo son. Lysa is the worst. Catelyn leaves the Eyrie because of all this bullshit.
Hello all you OBVIOUS FORESHADOWINGS OF SHE-HULK, and welcome to our review of Jessica Jones season 2! Our heroine (?) wouldn’t beat around the bush, and neither will we. Super Hubs leads us off!
(And as always: ~*spoiler alert!*~)
We begin with Jessica exposing another unfaithful husband—which seems to be the bulk of the work she does as a PI—to his wife and rolling her eyes through the subsequent argument. However, this job’s a little different because Jessica’s semi-famous now. Unfortunately her fame comes from the fact that she very publicly killed Kilgrave at the end of Season 1. So the wife thinks the sensible thing to do is to ask Jessica to kill her husband. Jessica, as you can imagine, doesn’t respond to this well. (Eds. Note: I thought that was just a boyfriend, not a husband, given the clear age difference.)
The idea that the public views her as a killer and her lingering guilt over the murders she committed while under Kilgrave’s control are the dramatic threads that propel Jessica’s story for the entire season, and they’re easily the most compelling part of the season.
Less compelling is the entire story with Pryce Cheng, a rival PI sent by Hogarth to try and buy out Alias Investigations for…reasons? I mean, the reason is that Hogarth wants Jessica to be on her payroll because she wants her powers at her disposal. Why she can’t just ask Jessica herself…who knows. Hogarth is shady as fuck and I guess she just doesn’t know how to do things in a non-shady way. The show obliquely mentions that Jessica probably wouldn’t agree to be Hogarth’s personal superhero, but I’m not sure why she thought having a douchelord come and try to Alias would somehow make Jessica work for her. It’s pretty dumb. And douchelord Pryce gets his ass kicked for being a dick to her too often, after which he becomes the Robyn of this season—just goin crazy and assuming Jessica’s evil cus she has powers. Again, it’s dumb.
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Eventually, a weird dude comes to Jessica asking for help cus he says he has powers and he’s being stalked by someone. She ignores him. He dies. She feels guilty. This was a fun way to introduce a ridiculous character from the comics named Whizzer; too bad he died. Also, she clearly sees he has powers but still for some reason doesn’t believe he’s in danger. I don’t really get that part. Simpson comes back and we’re led to believe he’s the killer…for one whole episode before he gets killed by the real killer. Who turns out to be…Jessica’s mom!
The show had been kind of setting this up in the beginning with the incredible emphasis it places on her family’s ashes, but I assumed it was going to be her brother. This was a fun twist and, again, definitely the most compelling part of the season. Seeing Jessica’s interplay with her mom and her worry that deep down she’s a killer, like her mom, is always fascinating. We find out why Jessica and her mom survived the crash and why they have powers and it’s all because of a guy named Dr. Malus (a name that would be incredibly unsubtle if he was more of a traditional villain instead of just a weird hippy with a god complex.)
Much of the season involves Jessica trying to get to know her mother while also keeping her from killing anyone else. She convinces her to go to prison (and we get a shoutout to The Raft from the mainline MCU) and, of course, everything goes to shit. Her mom breaks out, they try to run away, her mom dies. I loved this story. It’s sad and interesting and full of enough action to get your superhero kicks. It’s too bad it’s dragged down by all the other stories surrounding it.
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First of all is Malcolm. He probably has the best story other than Jessica. He’s still desperate to help people and latches onto Jessica—almost like a surrogate little brother for her—as her secretary/private-eye-in-training. She fires him almost every day, they have fun interplay, and he slowly learns how to be a better investigator. When he and Jessica inevitably break it’s actually painful to watch.
Hogarth has a fairly interesting story where she’s diagnosed with ALS and at first is determined to end her life in a bout of hedonism and debauchery until Jessica convinces her to take in another one of Dr. Malus and Mama Jones’s victims—who she falls in love with and convinces to tell her about IGH’s experiments in an effort to find a way to be cured. I spent the whole season thinking Hogarth was going to become She-Hulk. The elements are there! She’s a lawyer who was looking to have weirdo experiments done on her, experiments that had already made two super-strong women! SHE-HULK DAMMIT! (Although I guess a case could be made that Jessica’s mom is She-Hulk; she does get periods of blinding rage that seem to make her even stronger.) Anyway, her story veers off in a direction that I genuinely didn’t see coming and Hogarth gets a horrifying, wonderful Magnificent Bastard moment. So even if the story really brought her right back around to where she started, that makes more sense for Hogarth than a cliche redemption arc. And it was fun to watch. I just wish she’d had more bearing on the main plot.
And lastly, we have Trish’s story. Which—with the exception of the gloriously awful single/music video for her trashy early 2000’s club song “I Want Your Cray-Cray”—was terrible. It can be summed up as such:
It’s real annoying. She’s real annoying. And she pressures Malcolm into TAKING DRUGS! It’s messed up and I hate it. And the worst part: she gets powers in the end. No lessons learned, no growth, just an entitled white woman whining until she gets what she wants. Woo.
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As usual, the show was about four episodes too long. All of these Marvel shows really have to stretch themselves to reach that 13 episodes they seem to be contracted to do. Whenever the show is focused on Jessica, it’s amazing. Even the relatively weak episodes where she kills a prison guard and tries to make it look like suicide (it’s a long story) are elevated by her Kilgrave hallucinations. It’s just too bad a lot of the side characters got short-changed.
Overall, I’d give the season a 3 out of 5. Beloved wife, what are your thoughts?
Okay, honestly, I could spend a lot of time just talking about Trish’s terrible song. It’s really, really bad, and not just in a “Everyone involved is in on the joke” way. Watching the video, I literally can’t tell if Rachael Taylor (who plays Trish) is amazing at conveying stiff and awkward sexuality or if she herself is just really bad and unconvincing when she’s trying to go all “wet pop starlet dry-humping the air in skin-tight latex.” That whole scene in the show is awkward, and I think in a way they didn’t intend.
But outside of that, yeah, Trish’s story is kind of bullshit. SH didn’t even mention how after tricking Malcolm into taking drugs, she shoves him in a trunk so she can kidnap Dr. Malus and have him pump her full of superhero juice. Oh. And all of that is AFTER she fucks him (Malcolm) several times.
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The drugs she’s using, by the way, are an aerosol version of the combat pills she took from Simpson last season. How’d she get the upgraded version? Essentially by stealing the inhaler from Simpson’s corpse. We then get several episodes of her sucking that thing like a teenage boy who has no idea how boobs work, and at no point does she think “Hmm. This is a finite supply, and the person who created it is dead [murdered by Jessica’s mom], so how will I get more?” I repeatedly asked, “What is she going to do when it runs out?” for at least two episodes before it became a relevant plot point. When she kidnaps Dr. Malus, I assumed she wanted him to recreate the drug; earlier, she was shown at some kind of medical center where she’d had the inhaler analyzed in the hopes those scientists could reproduce it. (They couldn’t, and also it contained things that no human should ever consume, aka continued use would kill her.)
So I guess, in a way, I’m glad she didn’t use Malus’s talents for that. But the fact that she’s STILL desperate to be a hero and do what Jessica can’t is insane. I’ll give the showrunners props, though—the stage for all this was set in season one, so none of it seems out of character for Trish. But it rubbed me the wrong way for the whole season regardless. Fully encapsulating white feminism, Trish tries to co-opt the story of people victimized by shadowy operation IGH to prove how great she is and how this should be her stepping stone to something better. This makes it all the more insane that, after putting her life in danger and almost dying, she gets rewarded with powers. I hope that, in season three, she realizes that there’s more to it than just deciding to be a superhero.
Oh! Trish’s story also had a very short side plot that was even more pointless than Pryce Cheng: her relationship with a fellow journalist, Griffin Sinclair. WHAT WAS THE POINT OF HIM?! He encourages her to pursue the IGH story, then gets mad at her for being so ambitious that she’s willing to put herself in danger and blackmail a pedophile she knew from back in her Patsy days (a plot point, by the way, that’s barely worth having in the show), then is painted to seem like he’s going to steal the story only for it to be revealed that he was actually planning a surprise proposal. It’s very weird because how long have the two even been dating? We don’t know! So of course she declines his proposal and they break up. All before the season is halfway over. So, you know, why did we watch it?
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ANOTHER ridiculous Trish thing (because she has so many ridiculous things) is the continued existence of her mother, Dorothy. I get that familial relationships are very complicated, but I really don’t understand how Trish can keep letting Dorothy into her life when she obviously doesn’t give a shit about what Trish wants (and also STILL refers to her as Patsy). Mama Walker has done not one good thing for her in the time that we’ve known her *without* expecting something or trying to insinuate into Trish’s life. From everything we know about her, Trish’s mom is a garbage person who deserves no second (or third or nth) chances. But Trish is constantly handing them out while shitting on the one person who actually cares about her well being (Jessica).
In fact, Trish, who gave you permission to tell Jessica what to do with her life? She’s legitimately got PTSD, and you can’t strong-arm her into being the person you want her to be. Jessica even points out how Trish has too-high expectations for her, as if she wants Jessica to fail and feel like shit.
Sigh. Trish is kind of garbage, and I hope she gets some form of comeuppance in season three.
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Outside of all that, Jessica manages to develop a relationship with her building’s new super. He’s got a son who’s in awe of her and her powers, which is very interesting because it seems like she wouldn’t want the baggage of a child when considering a relationship. And this is extra baggage because the baby mama is alive and dragging the super through a contentious custody battle; she even kidnaps the son at one point, and Jessica and her mom stop them before they can leave town.
(Are you noticing how hard they went on family and family dynamics this season?)
Beyond THAT, there’s the fact that Malcolm ends up working for Pryce Cheng (I dunno why I feel obligated to say his full name). When he and Jessica break for real, they’re technically in the middle of a blackmail case for Hogarth (who wants to blackmail her partners into letting her stay at the firm, which has a clause that can let the partners kick her out for being diagnosed with ALS). Malcolm takes it upon himself to follow through on this, but when he asks Hogarth to have him on retainer the same way she wanted Jessica on retainer, she’s like “Nah, fam.” So he goes to Pryce Cheng, who’d offered him a job earlier in the season, and is therefore on Hogarth’s payroll by proxy. In the final episode, we see the three of them meeting in Hogarth’s office at the new firm she’s starting, and they’re discussing how they may need to do some not-totally-legal stuff for her.
This is upsetting to me. I feel like Malcolm has been the moral center of the show (even when he was a drug addict!), so watching him turn to the dark side—which included mindless, emotionless sex with girls he met online and didn’t bother to remember their names—is difficult. I’m hoping that he doesn’t turn full Hogarth in terms of what he’s willing to do to win. In case you’re thinking, “Nikkie, Hogarth isn’t that bad,” recall how she secretly bought Hope’s fetus in season one and how, this season, she exacts revenge on a previously homeless woman by tricking her into murdering her boyfriend! She’s fucking dark, you guys, and I don’t want her to taint Malcolm too much. SH thinks he won’t turn, but I have my concerns. Especially if Netflix is intent on padding out the seasons with odd filler stories.
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Seriously though . . . Hogarth talks someone into becoming a murderer simply because she was tricked into thinking her ALS had been healed by a powered person. I get that that was a really shitty thing for them to do, just for the purposes of robbing you, but Geri . . . No.
But also. Carrie Ann Moss fucking KILLS IT this season. She sells every emotion that she’s feeling so well. I would give her several Emmys for this season. She outclasses Krysten Ritter while taking up much less space in the series. This isn’t to say Krysten Ritter isn’t also great at playing the emotionally fraught Jessica; Carrie Ann is just doing a lot more than her this season.
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I feel like I don’t have much to say about Jessica’s story arc beyond what SH said. I will mention how I think everything that happens after the reveal that Jessica’s mom is alive (and powered) happens a little too quickly. Instead of the Pryce Cheng business and the Griffin Sinclair stories, I think we could’ve sped toward the reveal and then slowed down after. I really liked the episode after the reveal where Alisa recounts the highlights of her life in the wake of the Jones family car accident. But then it’s like rapid fire after that: Jessica hates her. Jessica helps her allude the police. Jessica saves her from Pryce Cheng. Jessica convinces her to give herself up. Jessica stops her from murdering Trish after she breaks out prison in the wake of Malus’s death (they were “married”). Jessica decides to run away with her. Trish murders her. It’s weird.
And the whole time, Alisa is way too desperate to be Jessica’s mommy, trying to brush off how shocking this must be for Jessica and write off how angry Jessica and ignore how she is effectively another target on Jessica’s back (to be fair, she finally comes to this conclusion at the very end, but damn woman). If they were going to stretch anything out in this season, it should’ve been the development of their relationship. Because I feel like I had to do slightly more belief-suspending/filling in of blanks on my own to make this speedy reconciliation possible.
There’s also just the questionable aspect of Jessica being ready to bail on Trish when Alisa shows up. By this point, Trish has been in Jessica’s post-accident life almost as long as Alisa was in her life pre-accident, so the argument that “Jessica has known her mother longer” is a little ridiculous. But! I will have much more on this in a post that will soon follow this one. (Stay tuned!)
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In conclusion, there was some interesting stuff in this season and some really fucking ridiculous stuff. I can see why people are quick to say it’s worse than season one because the villain (if we really want to call Alisa that) is far less compelling than David Tennant’s Kilgrave. But I ALSO kind of feel like that interpretation is sexist. This season focuses almost exclusively on women and their pain and their relationships with each other, and suddenly it’s failing to build on the first season’s reputation? Grow up, people. And acknowledge that if this season had actively tried to replicate season one, you would’ve railed against it for being unoriginal. I’VE HAD IT WITH YOUR USELESS CRITIQUES, AMERICA!
I’m a little bummed that now both Luke Cage and Jessica are coupled up with other people, but I’m sure they’re getting something out of these relationships that will prepare them to eventually get together. At least they’re both in interracial relationships; continue normalizing this, Hollywood!
So there you have it! Our more-or-less cohesive thoughts on the second season of Netflix’s Jessica Jones. It’ll be interesting to see what happens in season three. Will we go back so some crossover with the other Netflix shows, since Luke Cage was in the first season and then Foggy appeared for two seconds in this season? Although I suppose that would mean Danny Rand would have to be the one to show up, and who even wants that?
Until then, we’ll be around, frothing at the mouths as Infinity War draws ever closer.
Hey everyone. Remember when we were rewatching How I Met Your Mother to decide if the last season literally ruined everything or if the show as a whole was potentially still good?
Neither do we!
Therefore, this is probably going to be a short post just so we can finally move on and finish this series—both in the show sense and the blog post sense. I mean, we’re watching and blogging about two other shows! (Well, Super Hubs is . . . I have yet to start Dawson’s Creek because I’m just so sure I’m going to hate it lol.)
OK. I’m going to be honest with you guys. We started watching this season fairly soon after posting about season 2, then kept procrastinating on the post, so we decided that we needed to re-rewatch it in order to properly post about it . . . And now another extended period of time that I can’t really remember has passed since THAT viewing . . .
We’re not good at blogging lol
In many ways, this should be the easiest season to blog about. It was our favorite back when we only had access to the first three seasons on DVD, and it felt like the beginning of the show’s peak as the seasons went on—S3 being the strongest, then S4 and S5 being not as good but still much better than the last four. (Goddamn, how were there NINE FUCKING SEASONS of this show?!)
But at the same time . . . I’m not sure what to say! I’ll give it a shot, though.
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This is the season I can best quote. In basically every episode, I could say a lot of the lines as they were happening. One of my favorites happens in the first episode, when Marshall puts his hands all over the chicken breast that he’s going to feed to Enrique Iglesias and says “Haha. Got him.” His delivery is perfect.
Basically, Jason Segel’s performance as Marshall is always perfection. He’s doing the best things with his face and body language. Followed by NPH as Barney. In fact, I think one of the reasons I love this season so much is because everyone seems fully realized, and they’re also really playing off each other. You can see everyone reacting to what’s being said from the background in the exact way that real people react; that kind of half-laugh because you’re on your phone but you still hear what’s going on around you. I feel like that is peak in this season.
Another great thing about it is that the show doesn’t just write off Marshall and Lily now that they’re married. They’re still a big part of the show, still dynamic, still making mistakes. We discover Lily’s insane credit card debt, Marshall struggles with his continued employment in corporate law, and they irresponsibly buy a condo that has fucked-up floors. These are all really interesting life stories, and I’m glad they didn’t just toss Marshall and Lily off to the side now that they’d become The Married Couple(TM).
Will I be able to say the same thing once they become parents? I honestly don’t remember, so I guess we’ll find out!
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Despite the things that are good about the season (which also included the humor; again, because everyone knew their characters really well and had the delivery on point), I realized something unfortunate:
This is the season when Ted starts to be problematic.
I will die on the hill that the speed date he takes Stella on is romantic as fuck. I love that scene. But I also get how it’s a little gross that he was effectively trying to trick her into liking him for 10 weeks. (I do think it makes it a little better that she did say early on that she had a crush on him and that she never told him she was uninterested in him as a person, just that she would say no to a date. These are important distinctions in my mind.)
What’s more, however, is how he’s just super weird with women this entire season. It starts with him feeling like his break-up with Robin is somehow a competition, so he effectively uses Mandy Moore’s character (in episode one) to feel good about himself. Sure, she was probably using him too, but if he’d found just a normal woman, it would’ve played a lot worse. Then, there’s how he backslide-sleeps with Robin and GETS MAD AT HER FOR IT. He actively tries to slut-shame her by saying she forced herself on it, as if he wasn’t into the idea at all.
THEN, the biggest issue to me is how he ends his friendship with Barney over the fact that the latter slept with Robin. That’s so fucking childish. He doesn’t consider at all that Barney might have some latent feelings for Robin (spoiler alert: he does). Instead, he chooses to make the situation about him, ignoring the fact that he himself slept with Robin months before and also currently has a girlfriend that he supposedly serious about (but then decides that he should dump her three episodes later because she invites him to her sister’s wedding…). No, Barney committed an ATROCITY and therefore their years-long friendship is moot. Over some girl they just met two years ago. That’s fucking ridiculous, Ted, and it should’ve been a clue to Ted’s future kids that when it comes to Robin, he will always choose her over everyone else. (SHE WAS JUST LURKING IN THE WINGS WAITING FOR HIS WIFE TO DIE, YOU IDIOTS . . . Sigh. Wait till season nine, Nicole. You can share your rage then.)
I do still think that the way the Stella story ends is fucked up—and the revisit in a later season with The Wedding Bride is just horrible—but also . . . Ted deserves to get fucked over. Plus, he BARELY gets fucked over because he gets a job out of it . . .
I’m getting ahead of myself again.
The point is that even though I love the group dynamic throughout a lot of the season, and I feel like everyone knows the characters well, Ted’s integrity starts to unravel in this season. And it just gets worse as we go along.
Honey, your take?
Super Hubs’s Thoughts
So I’ve said it on this blog before, but it’s more difficult to write about the things you enjoy than the things you don’t enjoy, hence why this post took s’damn long. That being said, I feel like I like HIMYM less and less as the years go by. There’s…a lot of problematic shit in this show. A lot. Like, a lot a lot. Guys, in this season Barney says that he sold a woman. And we’re suppose to laugh about it. Human trafficing ain’t funny. Barney is a legitimate criminal and should be in jail. I don’t care that he’s been gathering dirt on his company for the Feds this whole time (we’ll get to that in season 9), the dude is bad. Real bad. Not funny sitcom bad, but actual should be in jail for his remaining life bad. Just watch the Bracket episode and tell me he’s not the worst person in the world. And yet we’re supposed to give him a pass just because he’s played by NPH, one of the most charming men in the world.
But hey, whatever, he’s just a side character. Maybe we can forgive the show and ignore all that bad shit. But no, Ted is just as bad. Yes. Just as bad. As Barney. I will stand by that for the rest of this recap. Ted treats women as trophies. He does it in a more “romantic” way than Barney, but he is still treating them as conquests. Just look at how he treats Robin for the rest of the show. He gets pissed off at Barney for sleeping with her, despite the fact that they are no longer together, he has another girlfriend, and who Robin sleeps with is NONE OF HIS BUSINESS. He constantly obsesses over her in a very unhealthy way and freaks out whenever anyone else is with her. He gets so petty when she’s dating Enrique Iglesias in this season even though, as Robin puts it, he parades a series of skeezy skanks in front of her all season. (Which, that’s another thing, Robin and Lily are always slut-shaming people in this show). He’s the worst.
And, while I do think the five-minute date is pretty adorable, I can’t help but think how Ted’s penchant for Big Dramatic Gestures is just another form of emotional manipulation. Ted is, at his core, a broken, insecure man and the show doesn’t focus on that nearly enough. He’s trapped in this cycle of abuse and manipulation and we’re supposed to find it charming. Well I don’t and I never have. Ask Nikkie. We used to have arguments about Ted all the time.
Also, Barney sold a woman. I feel like people don’t talk about that enough.
This is also the season where Ted’s absolutely infuriating aggro love for New York first shows up. There’s a whole episode where he and Barney trick a couple of women into thinking they’re tourists (again, Ted is just as bad as Barney and people need to acknowledge that) and then goes on a big rant about how they’re not real New Yorkers cus they live in Jersey. News flash Ted, YOU’RE NOT FROM NEW YORK. Stop acting like you were born and raised in New York and like you’re some authority on what it means to be a New Yorker. You’ve only lived there for like 8 years. Stop being such a damn poser.
Guys. I don’t like Ted.
Marshall and Lily have always been my favorite part of the show and that holds true in this season too. Jason Segel is a supremely talented actor and Alyson Hannigan is always charming, even though the writers don’t give her much to do. Same with Cobie Smulders. I genuinely like Cobie as an actress, it just sucks that her character is so poorly written. But she does what she can.
So yeah. This season makes me laugh more than all the others, but I feel like I’m already exhausted by the show. That’s not a good sign. Can’t wait to see how angry I get about the rest of the seasons!
Look at that. We brought in this recap at under 2,000 words. Go us!
Sooo yeah. This is our favorite season . . . and it’s still got some stuff. Hmm. Last year, when we started this rewatch, I brought it up to a friend at work, and she was convinced that we’d come out of this with a better opinion on the show. But if we’re already picking apart the seasons that we actually like . . . I don’t have high hopes.
I’d say we’ll see you soon but . . . let’s be honest here. The next post will happen when it happens.
May your favorite shows end long before they ruin themselves,
Nikkie and Super Hubs