Couch Potato: Jessica Jones Season 2

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:

Why do you get powers? I deserve powers. I want powers. GIVE ME POWERS!!

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.

Trish….. C’mon.

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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.

May your

The Great (?) HIMYM Rewatch of 2018: Season 3

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.)

Let’s go!

Nikkie’s Thoughts

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.

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

I’m Giving Up on “Grown-ish,” But You Don’t Have to

What up, fam? It’s ya girl, Nikkie.

Today, I’m going to talk about Grown-ish, the Freeform spin-off of ABC’s Black-ish. If you don’t know anything about the latter, it follows a well-to-do black family, anchored by Anthony Anderson and Tracee Ellis Ross as parents Dre and Bow, that’s constantly redefining what it means to be black in America today. Grown-ish follows Dre and Bow’s eldest child, Zoey, to her freshman year of college.

I have a lot to say about both shows, but I’m primarily going to focus on Grown-ish and why it’s ultimately not for me. If you’re curious about my thoughts on its predecessor, check out this piece I wrote for a different website a few years ago: “Now I’m Feeling ‘Black-ish'”.

Continue reading “I’m Giving Up on “Grown-ish,” But You Don’t Have to”

Rewind the Realm: Season 1, “The Wolf and the Lion”

Hello all you Hill Tribesman, and welcome back to Rewind the Realm! There’s tons of excitement to be found this week as we have duels and dicks and dastardly schemes galore! Remember last week when I said episode 5 is usually a climax? Well, we’ve got a big one this week as Ned and Jaime finally throw down, Varys and Littlefinger flirt, and #dickwatch finally bears (disgusting) fruit!

In Winterfell

Bran is doing some lessons with Maester Luwin while they watch Theon practice archery which seems…cruel. Luwin knows how much Bran wants to be a knight; why would he make him watch people practice knightly things? He should know Bran’s gonna be distracted, especially cus he’s already moody about Catelyn leaving. Yeah, Luwin eventually says Bran can learn horseback archery like the the Dothraki, but he lets him suffer for a long time before that. And Theon’s bein gross and talking about his “lovemaking” skills in front of Bran. Shut up Theon. Continue reading “Rewind the Realm: Season 1, “The Wolf and the Lion””

If You Don’t Know, Homie, Now You Know: Fresh Off the Boat

Welcome, welcome, lovely blog readers. Nikkie’s at the helm today, and I’m here to talk about a show that Super Hubs and I love but have never discussed on the blog: Fresh Off the Boat.

But more than that, I’m also going to discuss the memoir that inspired the show: Fresh Off the Boat by Eddie Huang. So, you’re getting something of a two-fer today! Get psyched!

Continue reading “If You Don’t Know, Homie, Now You Know: Fresh Off the Boat”

Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “The Dragon and the Wolf”

Hello, all you giant monster babies, and welcome to this season’s final installment of Recap the Realm! This was a doozy of an episode and the longest of the show by far, so expect several thousand words. You knew what you were getting in to! So let’s get right to it.

Lord MWB: Season 7 has been a bumpy road. There have been glorious action pieces, baffling character decisions, weird timelines, and a general sense that we’re just really racing to the end as fast as we can. It’s been rough, y’all. But with this last episode, the entire season has mostly been redeemed. Mostly.

The meeting at the Dragonpit was exciting just by sheer volume of characters, we got some fun dialogue from…everyone really, and Bronn and Tyrion finally quipped with each other again, which is honestly half of what I wanted from this season. And Sandor teased us oh so sweetly with the promise of Cleganebowl. I’m honestly not too mad we didn’t get it because the show hasn’t set up the dramatic weight of it the way the books have, but I’m still excited to see it eventually. There’s so much to go over from this scene, I can’t even wrap my head around where to begin. Continue reading “Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “The Dragon and the Wolf””

Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “Beyond the Wall”

Hello all you zombified polar bears and welcome back to Recap the Realm!

Today, we’re serving up elation and disappointment in equal measure as we try to catch our breaths and stop our pounding hearts. “Beyond the Wall” was a frustrating and amazing episode, and boy have we not been able to shut up about it.

Lord MWB: Hope you’re all ready, cus I’m gonna rant!

The further away from the books that Game of Thrones strays, the more it becomes like a sprawling D&D campaign. The complexity of character that so defined the early seasons—and is essential to the books—is dropped in favor of spectacle and sprawling action. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing; TV is a visual medium after all, and there’s no way the show could have ever hoped to match the scope of the story told in the books. It’s necessary to look at the books and the show as two completely different types of stories. The books are complex, nuanced, deep fantasy with serious themes; the show is now incredibly light fantasy with great action and fun characters that maybe takes itself just a little too seriously. David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are pretty talented guys, but this season has proved just how far behind GRRM they are. They may know the general story beats that George is going to hit, but they do not have the skill to connect those beats in a very satisfying way. Continue reading “Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “Beyond the Wall””

Couch Potato: The Defenders

Hello all you dragon punchers! Super Hubs here again and guess what: It’s quick review time!

The Defenders have a long and confusing history in the comics and have counted among their members most of The Avengers, a good portion of the X-Men, and several B-list heroes. Ironically, until the Netflix shows started airing, Daredevil had never been a part of the Defenders. They have fought inter-dimensional monsters, vampires, and all sorts of weirdos. Netflix obviously couldn’t afford to make the show quite that large scale, but what the show does have in common with the comics is a deep connection to New York City.

Unlike the Avengers, the Netflix shows have spent a lot of time presenting our heroes as people who have an almost pathological inability to work with others. Yeah, the Avengers are all A-type personalities and argue a lot, but they’re a team made up of a soldier, a CEO of a major multi-national corporation, two spies who have worked together for years, and a god who spends a lot of time fighting alongside his fiercely fashionable companions. The only one who’s a loner is Hulk, and even he has a legendary bromance with Tony Stark.
The Defenders, however, are all just assholes who happen to be good at punching. Seeing how the show would bring them together and convincingly make them mesh as a team was one of the things I was most looking forward, and it actually pulled things off. It even made me like Danny! What a twist!

As always, there will be spoilers. Like, right after the drop, so read no further if you want none!

Continue reading “Couch Potato: The Defenders”

Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “Eastwatch”

Hello you unkindness of warged ravens, and welcome back to Recap the Realm!
Let us not mince words but simply gather ’round the scrolls for some good ol’ fashioned recappin’.

Lord MWB: Boy was this week frustrating. Jon got cozy with a dragon, Sam forgot his history, Arya got a -8 to her INT stat, Jorah showed up to set up his inevitable death, and Littlefinger just…Littlefingers all over the place. For such a slow episode, it sure did make Lady MWB and I scream in frustration a lot. And now you lucky readers get to hear our screaming via the power of the internet!

Bronn apparently has a magic Cloak of Breath Holding because he dragged Jaime through an entire lake while that dude was wearing full armor, and they both emerged barely out of breath. I guess he also has Boots of Super Strength for that matter. Basically, if Bronn was a DnD character, his player would get kicked out of the game for cheating. Meanwhile, Dickon was a useless character that died a pointless death. Also, Dany’s not doing great at this queen thing. She made Tyrion Hand for a reason—maybe she should listen to him about not burning people to death.

Continue reading “Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “Eastwatch””

Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “The Spoils of War”

Greetings, fair travelers of the interwebs. Thanks for stopping by our humble square of digital real estate to get some not-so-sage words about one of our favorite shows.

Let us not mince these words, whether they be sage or otherwise! Dive on in, and watch out for dragon fire!

Lord MWB: Alright, I get it guys; the final battle scene was phenomenal. It was. I’m not gonna deny that. But SHUT UP! That wasn’t the most important part to me. Cool though it was, it had nothin on the #StarkSquadReunion! The Stark kids all together for the first time since season effing one! Pour one out for Rickon, you guys, cus the other kids sure didn’t. But whatever! Arya and Sansa in the same room—hugs; awkwardness. I loved it so much!

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The whole scene where Arya gets stopped at the gates by bungling guards before slipping away was a little too…hammy. I get that it was a direct callback to her attempting to enter King’s Landing in season one, but in an episode so short we probably could have done without it. But when Sansa meets her down in the crypts and they’re kind of chilly toward one another before finally hugging for real… My heart guys. MY HEART. Continue reading “Recap the Realm: Game of Thrones, Season 7, “The Spoils of War””