Thursday, August 29, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 11

Guys, I don't get it.

What the hell is the matter with this series? I have heard so little good things about anything from this latest series of Doctor Who. Why? I actually really liked it! It was a sort of back to basics, Christopher Eccleston first series vibe, and I really enjoyed it! I think Jodie Whittaker is an absolutely wonderful Doctor, she probably takes more of her personality from the 5th Doctor, a very compassionate, caring, and sweet person who is completely against violence and above all wants to help in any way possible. She plays this role with such charm, joy, and doesn't take things as a joke. You feel her dedication and her wish to be a great Doctor Who and I can really say she accomplished it, I love her to the moon and back in this series. And it was very hard for me to say goodbye to the 12th Doctor because he may not have been my Doctor but he is easily one of my top 5, but I'm happy we have Jodie on board and hope we see more and more of her. Her companions this time around are really good, back to a multi-Tardis team again very much like the 4th/5th Doctor, and I actually realized something very early on. The episodes themselves while still having that sci-fi adventure feel, are there so we know more about the companions and get to really enjoy them. Their dynamic really does feel like a family because of how well they know each other and we the audience can feel that too. So we have Graham and Ryan who are grandad and grandson respectively, and Yasmin who has been a childhood friend of Ryan. So all of these people know each other before the adventuring starts and you really believe it.  But I love the fact that every episode has them sort of face their own demons. Graham lost his wife and has to come to terms with her not being there on his travels with the Doctor, Ryan lost his gran and also has an absent father so it makes him a bit more distant from the group and he faces those demons in his own way, and Yasmine has an importance on family that she doesn't always get along with and faces facts about her heritage that she finds difficult to accept. All of these character's dilemmas are real, any person can immediately identify with them, and we see them slowly grow and change for the better like real people. So the focus is more on the Tardis crew, and I'm totally fine with that because I like these characters! The stories themselves still are quite good, they are not the best episodes of Doctor Who but neither are they the worst. They sort of feel very late 80s Doctor Who, specifically the earlier 7th Doctor episodes which were okay stories but had a charm of their own very much like this. The Woman Who Fell To Earth is a very good story, finely introducing all our main players and my second favorite post-regeneration story of the modern series, the first going to Deep Breath. It really is a clean slate, I mean there's new everything, new showrunner, new theme, new titles, new sonic screwdriver, it really does feel like 2005 all over again. The Ghost Monument was a fun little trek episode showing off the new Tardis design which actually reminds me quite a bit of the 8th Doctor's Tardis, very atmospheric and unique. Rosa I thought was a damn fine episode that had no qualms fully showing the racial climate of the mid 50s and actually did get me a tiny bit choked up at the end. Arachnids In The UK I know for a fact would have scared the living daylights out of me when I was younger, and it's a decent horror-esque mystery that I actually do kinda wish UNIT was in if only to see Kate and this Doctor chat for a bit. The Tsuranga Conundrum was an okay episode, though I have to admit the monster design did get a laugh out of me. Kerblam goes full mystery with a genuinely unsettling monster design but yeah we have seen this story before. The Witchfinders on the other hand was friggin' awesome! I loved this episode, essentially taking The Crucible with a Doctor Who twist, with Alan Cumming hamming it up to a delightful degree, but man....that one scene. It has such great acting, absolutely outstanding acting even, it's subtle but it works so friggin' well you can really tell Jodie and Alan were giving it their all, and there's just one little bit at the very end from Jodie and it only lasts for like 2 seconds but you can see that fury of a Time Lord is still in her. Oh, I love it! God help me I love it so! And the finale wasn't half bad but I will admit the stakes weren't very high but the additions to the universe I thought were really nice and had some good character moments. And I fully understand why, they knew people were going to be hesitant with a female Doctor and no more Steven Moffat behind the wheel so they didn't want to throw all the big storylines, sci-fi explosions, and madcap time travel stories just yet. They had to gauge people to it, and I really don't think they were being different for different's sake, it still feels like Doctor Who. The new theme and opening is outstanding, taking the classic 1963 opening titles and modernizing it, with a fantastic new theme that feels more sci-fi than it has been in a while. I dig the sonic and Tardis designs, I love the fact the Doctor has to make the screwdriver on Earth with a bit of alien tech and a lot of bits and pieces, I'd love to buy the replica toy and add it to my screwdriver collection. I also like the fact the Tardis implements the crystal theme, it's a very simplistic console but I know they can build upon it and make it look even better. A lot of people were complaining about the costume and said it looked like she got it from a thrift shop, and she totally does! I don't quite get the pants which don't go all the way down to her ankles but it's still a cool costume. I really took my positive mind frame into this series and I genuinely did enjoy it, and I know they can build upon this and make an even better series with more excellent stories. The quality of the cinematography blew me away in the first handful of episodes, it reminded me an awful lot of Tron Legacy in it's opening shots of Sam Flynn on his motorbike, it looked so damn clean with great lighting, the writing was more character focused than story and that's totally fine, the effects are well done, and I love the new aspects and designs of the show. If memory serves the newest series will hit next year and I hope I can get to watch it every week. I haven't even been a fan of Doctor Who for a decade but I love it so much, there's such creativity and love put into every Doctor, every series both old and new, and yes I have had huge problems with this show in the past. Upon my first viewing of Hell Bent, I thought it killed Doctor Who for me. I went into series 10 with a sense of dread and bitterness, but it became a great series in my eyes. I know I ranted a fair amount but I do it out of love, I do it because they made decisions that hurt the show, hurt the story, the characters, the villains, because I knew full well they could have done better. But no show is perfect, and every show has had it's ups and downs, and I didn't stop loving Doctor Who or stopped watching the show. If you're a fan, and truly love and appreciate the show you stick around through thick and thin. The same thing happened in the late 80s, Doctor Who came under a lot of fire for being too violent and scary, the show was getting less and less great ratings and viewings, and even though it was still making good stories and great characters it was cancelled. They cancelled Doctor Who just barely after it's 25th anniversary, and it took nearly two decades for it to come back full force. Which is a shame cause I greatly love the 7th Doctor stories, every single one of them to be honest, I thought Trial Of A Timelord was excellent and Colin Baker really did better than people give him credit for. And I highly doubt that Jodie Whittaker will lead this show back into cancellation, this was a fine series of Doctor Who and I am fully ready for more. If you've never watched the show before and I've peaked your interest for the future and perhaps even the past of Doctor Who, I hope you enjoy it and have a lot of fun with it. If you're a fan and you've sat through 2 weeks of my rantings and praises, I have to thank you, I mean you guys are troopers, and I always love to hear people's thoughts on this show. Thank you so much for joining me on a long adventure through time and space but there's always more out there, there are films out there where acting reigns supreme, where animation is beauty and motion is key, people who chew scenery and special effects worthy of praise. Somewhere there's action, somewhere there's horror, and somewhere else there's comedy gold. Come on, we've got movies to see.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 10

I'm sorry, whaaaaat?

A series of Doctor Who that I love from beginning to end, have nothing to complain about, and even like the finale? I never thought I'd see the day. I mean Peter Capaldi has always been top notch, utter class, and a joy to watch and for a final series it's really good. The circle is now complete, when Peter Capaldi was a young boy he watched Doctor Who from the beginning, from An Unearthly Child all the way to now with several series and a wonderful finale. And that classic feel is still felt perhaps even more so with our new companion, Bill played expertly by Pearl Mackie and I love her. I love everything about her. I love her personality, her curiosity, her witty banter, the fact it sort of is another Doctor and Ace relationship being an aspiring learner and a patient professor. Brilliant! Could not love her more. And like I said the relationship her and the Doctor have is wonderful, Peter does amazing work as always, being fun and entertaining but can really hit home those dramatic points. And I just don't mean the regeneration, there's one scene with Missy and it really does make me get all misty eyed, he can act the full range of emotions. Plus we have another companion who previously worked with River and now tags along on occassion with the Doctor, and people are sort of split on Nardole. Now I really didn't like or even get his character first time around but on second viewing Matt Lucas brings a lot of humor and enjoyment and he quickly grew on me. Then we have Missy, now this is how you make a character who was hamfisted and given poor characterization in the last series and is now given good writing, some real lovely acting by Michelle Gomez, and a more interesting dynamic between the two Time Lords. I mean the relationship between the Doctor and the Master has always been so interesting, because it's this complete love/hate waltz, when people said in series 9 that the talks and interactions between Missy and the Doctor reminded people of Jon Pertwee and Roger Delgado I wanted to slap them upside the head and decode what combo of narcotics they were using, but here I fully see it. You can tell these people are on opposite sides of the board yet retain a great respect and admiration for each other, you can tell they were previous friends just like you could during the classic series, and that is beyond fantastic! It's the best writing in the finale if not the whole series, they really did a superb job! All the episodes are good if not great, The Pilot introduces us to Bill and has some lovely moments throughout with the Doctor actually teaching at a university, and has a rather sweet and lovely little nod to the first actor to play Doctor Who. Thin Ice had beautiful visuals and a good story with honestly some very good incidental music. Yeah, that's one thing I noticed, usually like in any show there's background music and it's done very well in some episodes, but this time even scenes with the Doctor playing his guitar has really great music, almost spaghetti western in style with electric guitar solo's, but yeah the music was much more noticeable and lovely in this series. Knock Knock gave me Ghost Light flashbacks with a very spooky mystery in a old mansion, and had it's fair share of fun as well. But the stories after that, essentially a huge mid-season 4 part story where the Doctor actually goes blind, and I don't mean a oh he's been inflicted with something to raise the stakes and he brushes it off at the end, I mean he cannot see for multiple episodes. That's....never happened before. I mean yes, there have been tons of stories with an overarching story or a character arc, but to have such a huge blow hit the Doctor in a damaging way for several episodes is kind of a big deal. I was so shocked seeing that and was wondering what would happen next and the stories around that are well done indeed. Empress Of Mars just screamed Star Trek The Next Generation at me, I'm not sure why, maybe it was the story elements, an importance on diplomacy and negotiation, I'm not too sure but it seemed very Star Trek to me. Then the finale, wow. I won't dare say a thing but it is so well done, a true no-win scenario for the Doctor with very grim stakes, and a return of old enemies makes it a great finale. And the fact we have a wonderful callback to the 5th Doctor's regeneration before the true regeneration story begins sets the tone perfectly, because we see the 1st Doctor played by David Bradley, known to the muggle world as Mr. Filch, arrives as a sort of tie in to The Tenth Planet the very first regeneration story told. And it really is a perfect send off for Capaldi, no massive story but more a character piece, the conversations between the two Doctor's is truly great with both having resignations over their regenerations and have to come to terms with that, with lots of fun back and forth between a truly old fashioned Doctor with his totally modern incarnation. Peter's final scene is emotional but a truly triumphant goodbye with great hope and love for the future. Which I will fully take with me in Jodie Whittaker's first series! So near the end, and yet so soon.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 9

Well that was unexpected.

Series 9 is like, good? It's actually really good and barely pisses me off? I'm stunned. Like they went from f***ing omnishambles to a good series? Wow. After the complete mental breaking that the series 8 finale inflicted upon me I was very nervous about this series. But they fixed it. It still has issues that make me just have an emotional fit bordering on rage but it's really nothing that major. We have Clara and The Doctor having adventures, really good adventures, Clara has apparently completely gotten over her one true love and is back to the fun and lovable Clara. So either she was still lying through her teeth at the last finale or she got over his death super fast. But I like her again! She's gotten a bit overzealous with the adventures and travelling far past how Rose was always game for something new and exciting, to the point where even The Doctor looks incredibly concerned but more on that later. I thoroughly enjoy almost every episode save one, they are written very well and give a lot of entertainment. What surprised me though was how many two-parters there were, literally every episode save for one and the finale are two-parters which make it feel very classic Doctor Who. I love that with Peter Capaldi's series, it feels very classic but modern, Peter was a massive fan of Doctor Who and his love for the classic series can be really felt here in many different aspects. The fact we have an opening episode based on Skaro with Dalek designs from both classic and modern eras is a real treat, The Magician's Apprentice is a great way to start the series with wonderful emotion and good writing. We then move on to Under The Lake which is a good little mystery with a bit of a spooky twist and has some good character moments in it. The Girl Who Died is an amazing story, if only for just the last 15 minutes, I'm serious watch this two-parter for the last 15 minutes of this arc. You will not regret it. Great writing, very good acting, and while it did introduce a character I grow to not like much I did enjoy her here, but it has a lot of good ideas and character moments. After that we have The Zygon Invasion, more Kate and Osgood so this episode gets two big thumbs up from me but seriously Peter Capaldi deserves 50 Oscars for his performance. I mean whoa, it made me just an emotional mess of tears. Sleep No More is a bit blah, but it's the standard filler episode before the finale. Speaking of which. Oh boy here we go. I have significant issues with the finale but it all lies on the back of the last episode. Face The Raven was really, really good with an emotional end and it has a deeper meaning than just another companion's goodbye which we'll talk about. However...Clara and Ashildr are not good, I don't enjoy their characters anymore and it kinda severely screwed everything over. Big time. Now before we discuss my utter disappointment and fueled rage of the finale it's time to talk characters. Now, I love Doctor Who. I really love it. It is a fantastic show with limitless potential, it is a show that could go on for 100 years, I truly believe that. But some people ask why, and the answer is very simple. The characters is what either makes or breaks the series whether classic or modern. It's so easy to just fall in love with Sarah Jane Smith because of such excellent writing and acting, she is kind, intelligent, a true and undoubtedly best friend to The Doctor, intrigued by the adventures and fully capable to take care of herself. And yet even with characters I didn't really go for like Harry Sullivan or Turlough, they grew on me as time went by. There was evolution to the characters, reasons for their decisions and personality, they grew and changed like real people. Clara was a character I quickly liked and enjoyed, she was so fun, she could flirt and joke but still be real and a true joy to watch. Yet through the entirety of series 8 she became a horrible person due to poor writing, but she came through again because she is back to being a joy to see, ready for adventures, light and funny, and becomes a complete character once more. Her death was tragic and emotional, but it had purpose because she falsely believed she was impervious to bad things and that she was on the same level as The Doctor. Now flawed characters is no major problem, no one is perfect, yet I feel this trait for Clara seems so off. She shouldn't be racing into these situations throwing caution to the wind, it seems so unlike her. But she tries to justify it and it kind of works but it does detract from her death because of her own hubris. But not in a clever or ironic way, just a stupid way. She acted how a child acts, well I saw how this person does this so I will do the same as them and be completely fine if not better. That is not how anything works. And she pays the consequences for that, she is killed, and it has a severe effect on The Doctor and you fully feel it. The problem with Clara is that her death becomes beyond pointless, she is rescued by being pulled out of time and if she continues to live time will break. I mean like, game over man game over! And she is completely ready to face her fate, her last words "Let me be brave." fully back this up, she knows she has to die and accepts it. And then the ending happens. She decides on a whim, like a leaf on the wind, that she should travel with Ashildr in a Tardis for awhile before then. No. That makes Clara's death pointless. Modern Doctor Who does not have the sheer will to kill a companion, they subvert it in any way possible. Oh Rose Tyler isn't dead despite that's what she said in the intro of Army Of Ghosts, she's just in a parallel dimension! Oh Donna Noble didn't really die, it was purely a symbolic death because her memories were wiped, she's alive and well! Amy and Rory didn't die, they were zapped back in time and had a long life together, they're totally fine! River didn't die, her conscious is in a super computer matrix so her spirit lives on. Oh Clara's not dead you silly bean, she's travelling in time and space in her own Tardis! Because death isn't a thing in life! Death doesn't exist and never has to be faced, pain and grief and loss never has to be felt for really realsies! Now if you will permit me I will quote a different sci-fi series, "Damn it, Bones, you're a doctor. You know that pain and guilt can't be taken away with a wave of a magic wand. They're the things we carry with us, the things that make us who we are. If we lose them, we lose ourselves. I don't want my pain taken away! I need my pain!". That's right kids, death is something you never have to face, you never have to face the no-win scenario, everything will be fine always no matter what. Imagine if they even attempted that in classic Doctor Who, oh Adric didn't die at the end of Earthshock, nooooo the ship he was on actually had an escape pod that inexplicably also had time travel capabilities, he's back in his own time doing just fiiine and dandy!

You do not ever get to do that. You have completely betrayed and ruined Clara's story beyond comprehension because of this. It kinda takes away the emotional crux and performance of Peter Capaldi in Heaven Sent which I can fully say without even batting an eye is the best Doctor Who episode of the modern era. The absolute best. It is a masterfully crafted, written, acted, and directed episode. I cannot love it enough, absolutely well done! And the finale isn't bad for the most part until the end but the writing in Clara's case just completely ruins it. Oh but I'm forgetting someone, Ashildr is harboring on my nemesis list, now when we first meet her I really liked her! Just a girl with an imagination and Viking blood in her veins, wonderful! I can see why The Doctor did what he did which is essentially implant her with an advanced medical chip that makes her pretty much immortal. Never aging, never changing, the second immortal we know of. They could have done so much with this character. Instead they make her an apathetic, bitchy, angsty, pathetic child. She lives from Viking times to the end of time itself, and she has no growth. I'm sorry what? In every single last piece of media I have ever digested, in terms of immortals, they change. Now I'm not saying she can't be bitter and all angsty after a few hundred years. That makes sense! You get tired of seeing everything and everyone you hold dear just fade in front of your eyes, you'd get pretty bitter and have a shitty attitude about everything after that. But that's the problem, she's always the absolute **** who doesn't care about a damn thing, and it could have been amazing. We learn that her memory can only go so far, she has written a library of volumed diary entries recounting her story, we learn she has had children and they were killed during the Black Plague, she's been in wars, saved people, and can't retain it in her memory because she is that old. That's an incredible idea. You could have done anything and decided to do nothing. Have her grow bitter and disconnected from humanity by the time she meets The Doctor again in the 1600s, and she realizes she made a mistake by teaming up with a villain and she accepts her fault but then dedicates her life to help people, to have a new lease on life and follow in The Doctor's path but here on Earth. You could even have a conversation between them reminiscing of the conversation he had with Jack when they were fixing the rocket in Utopia, that she's a forever fixed point in time and that he just can't take her but she understands and stays on Earth. That would have been incredible character moments in dialogue. To have The Doctor connect with this woman, and understand how she feels about her prolonged existence and past lives. There was excellent material here for a character and they didn't do anything with her. It is a colossal waste. Just absolute wasting of great character potential, that is what I hate most of all. I can rage against the ruining of the Cybermen but those can be fixed and changed, but it's the characters that stick around that have the biggest impact. It hurts the show, it really does. Not just in my eyes but in the actual world of the show. So instead of Clara having one last bittersweet talk with The Doctor before she returns to face her death, she's travelling about with an immortal in a ship they can't possibly know how to fly. Great. Perfect.

Whatever, just....whatever.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 8

Boy did this go downhill fast.

Now I love Peter Capaldi, he is truly a fantastic Doctor and I still miss him now, he fully understands the character and has done no wrong. That is not the issue of this series. And in all fairness it started off damn well, Deep Breath was a great first episode for Peter and the new dynamic change for Clara was nice but it was only the beginning of the end for her character. Remember this is a woman who knows The Doctor, is fully aware of who he is and that he can change his face into a new incarnation, so why does she throw this tantrum that "He's not The Doctor anymore! Where's my sexy boyfriend? Why is he ooooold??" I mean are you kidding me? She knows him better than any of his recent companions, more than Sarah Jane, Rose, anybody and yet she still acts like a child. We'll rip into her, I mean get to her in a bit. Not yet. But she comes to accept who he is and their next adventures are really fun. It's just great to see an older Doctor and younger companion, so no bullshit crushes or romance, just a nice friendship between them and it's nice. Into The Dalek is an interesting episode but I kinda hate how they made the actual Dalek casing act like a human body full of squishy bits, white blood cells, and a stomach. Just...weird, I mean I get it but yeah, weird. Robot Of Sherwood was excellent fun, with The Doctor being a total grump as he banters with a fun Robin Hood and Clara gets her fairy tale adventure. Listen I felt was trying soooo hard to be the next Blink, and while it was eerie it didn't have that terror punch Blink had but I still liked it. Time Heist was the last good episode of the series, a very Ocean's 11 caper in an intergalactic bank, short but sweet, and was well crafted. After that.....ugh. I mean the episodes aren't god awful, they're not even really bad at all but they absolutely just ruined a fun, charming, and very likable companion. We'll talk about the series finale but we need to address the absolute assassination of Clara Oswald. I mean talk about a complete betrayal, I have no idea what Steven was on or thinking but he made Clara go from a sweet, likable, and fun companion into this whiny, bitching, insufferable, pathological liar that borders and then crosses into psychopathic child who I absolutely despise. And I know exactly the moment she became a hateful person, and it was when she dated Danny Pink. I'm still racking my brain trying to figure out how their little relationship even got off the godforsaken ground. When I see more chemistry and substance in a relationship between Anastasia and f***ing Christian Grey, then you my friend have officialy failed at writing. That is how bad their relationship is, their first date is an absolute dumpster fire and yet they inexplicably keep dating and forming an I can only assume supremely toxic relationship, Clara can't stop lying straight to his face even when he practically knows about The Doctor, he keeps trying to break the bond between Clara and The Doctor to the point where it seems like he's gaslighting and manipulating her to just never see The Doctor again and be with him. It sickens me in the pit of my stomach. And you know what? It works. Clara starts whining and bitching like a spoiled child, always wanting her way without ever regarding anybody's feelings, to the point where she snaps like a Twix bar, essentially holds her best friend hostage and destroys all the Tardis keys because she wants her dead boyfriend back. She was dying already since Deep Breath but in the first part of the series finale, she is dead to me. Just dead to me, I now hate a truly wonderful companion that I greatly enjoyed seeing. And it is very apparent to anyone who watches this series, there is such an obvious and almost tangible break between this one character from two seperate series. It sucks to see her turn into this cunniving monster, because I liked Clara! I really liked her! I thought she was so much fun, had wonderful chemistry with Matt, Jenna Coleman is a delight in those episodes! And this is what happens to her. Becoming a codependent, immature, pathetic, horrible, utter pathological liar who goes from sociopathic to psychopathic and it is a slap in the face to all of her fans! Clara deserves better than this. And all because of an absolute piece of shit, f*** Danny Pink, his whole character I can sum up very quickly. "Clara you should listen to me because I'm a man, and I don't trust your best friend and I think he's secretly a massive asshole. Come be with me because I know better but I hate you because you can't ever tell me the truth, and I'm just a swishy bitch who wants attention. Because I killed a kid in the army!" Honestly that last bit about the kid when I first heard it, I thought it was really good character writing, but at the end of it I just don't care. I somehow hated him more when he turns into a Cyberman, probably because he was the biggest emo twat I've ever seen in my life, I was honestly expecting to hear in the background of any scene of him "Crawling in my skin, these wounds they will not heal". I am not joking. Doctor Who is making me fricking LIVID lately, and I don't want to be this way! But bullshit is bullshit and when the bullshit man says this finale is bullshit...oh my God I could not be more serious. Okay fine, the whole mystery built over the series and in the first part of the finale is good. Who's this batshit crazy broad? What's this afterlife place? What are all these supporting characters doing here? And I'll freely admit I had no idea it was the Cybermen until the reveal! And then it just gets more stupid. What the hell is the deal with Missy? Now I have no issue with the idea behind this character, I can roll with it to a point. Now I seriously and truly do not hate Michelle Gomez but my Goooood what even is this character?! And I do NOT want to hear anybody defend this with, oh she's just a crazy, zany, illogical character so you can't be mad that her plan is utterly pointless and she's an annoying prat! Let me give you an acorn of wisdom: Crazy has motive, there is a reason the saying "There is a method to the madness" exists, villains in media could be nuttier than squirrel droppings but they had motivation and ulterior motives. There is none of that here. She's just crazy to be crazy, and we don't have to explain it because she's an animaniac!! No. Do something with her character, give us material to know her and enjoy her presence more. Stop. Lazily. Writing. Characters! There's one thing I liked in the finale besides Peter and seeing Kate again, it's so silly but I just love it, when the Cybermen emerge in the street if you look in the background there's this lady who just bear hugs a Cyberman and I swear to God it is the cutest damn thing. Why do I love that so much? I have no idea but I'm taking what I can get from this dumpster fire! Allow me to relay this whole evil plan because I wanna bash my frick fraking brains out against the walls because of how much zero sense it makes. So let me get this straight...a company front which is actually a Cyberman converting factory not only harvests dead bodies to make Cybermen (which is totally fine, I like that) and then after that, they start flying Iron Man style into the atmosphere, then explode causing huge synthesized storm clouds to emerge, which then rain water into graves all over the world, kinda like in Return Of The Living Dead, where instantaneously corpses no matter how long they've been buried or how much they have decayed, whether a few weeks or several centuries, emerge as fully functioning Cybermen. Uh-huh.

I just took like...a lot of pills, maybe had some alcohol. I'm fine. Everything is just tickety boo here at Dude Central! What mind melting level of stupid are you talking about? Of course Cybermen can just bust out of graves even if they don't have a brain which is literally what they need to function. They're just mindless zombies now that are at the whim of a woman who would make Charles Manson look like Albert Einstein, even though they are tactical, methodical, pure logical beings who make extensive plans to upgrade the universe. I see nooooo issue with this! Let them do a little dance, it'd be so funny! Hey you remember that in Doctor Who when the iconic villains did nothing and were just a waste of time? Oh man those were fun times. What's that? None of this makes sense and the ending destroys the coolness and impact of the Cybermen almost beyond repair? Nahhh! It's fine! It's all fine! This is totally Doctor Who, that beloved sci-fi series enjoyed by young and old for over 50 years, that made excellent stories, beloved characters, thoughtful and interesting dilemmas, original monsters, and fun for everyone. Yeah.....that's what this was.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Doctor Who: 50th Anniversary Specials

I'm throwing in the Christmas special with this one.

Normally I don't talk about the Christmas specials unless something happened story wise but since The Time Of The Doctor was Matt's final episode I feel obligated to see him off of course. But in good time. I was very fortunate to actually see the 50th anniversary special in a theater surrounded by mega fans of the entire series, it was great fun and an occasion worthy of memory. Needless to say we were all very impressed, I mean they played their cards just about as perfectly as you can get, a multi-Doctor story based around the one thing we've heard about for nearly a decade, The Time War. Just to see it on the screen at last was a big moment, but it goes deeper than that. To see a war torn Doctor played wonderfully by Sir John Hurt accompanied by our beloved 10th and 11th incarnations was amazing! They work together so well and we've never seen this War Doctor before but they flesh his character out very well in an hour long special, and to see them treat such a massive thing like The Last Great Time War with such weight and importance feels genuine. It took up a position to tell the most epic story in Doctor Who history and make the celebration of 50 golden years truly spectacular. Which is exactly what they did, while throwing in Kate and a new character Osgood who shrieks fangirl like nobody's buisness and I will forever love her, a return of the Zygon's who haven't been seen in 40 odd years, and it all feels just right. It has it's comedy, it's drama, some major surprises and is still a love letter to the series. The fact that it opens with the 1963 titles immediately lets you know what you're in for. It was a huge deal back then 6 years ago and it still holds up even now and will continue to do so. And last but certainly not least we have the 11th Doctor's final adventure, and it does it so well. It juggles being a regeneration story, an actual plot important story, and a Christmas story damn near perfectly. It has a few very sweet and loving moments that make you feel that Christmas warmth even if you don't watch it around December. The story focuses on a mysterious message from a planet that draws every adversary from The Doctor's history to it, forcing the Time Lord to protect the town from an imminent war while slowly dying of old age because he has no more regenerations to use. It's a very good story and one last great hurrah from Matt Smith, my Doctor. His regeneration still brings a tear to my eye, and his last words ring true for any individual. It's a heartbreaking end but I'll always remember when The Doctor was Matt. I really felt he was going to go the distance, topple Tom Baker's incredible 7 year run since he was the youngest actor to play The Doctor and he had that energy and acting talent to do so, but sadly it only lasted 3 years. But I loved those 3 years, I used to watch his series with my mom, she knows Matt's stories best and he really was the reason I went from being a fan to huge fan. My love for Doctor Who has waned slightly since those years but I really was invigorated again despite my nagging, and I cannot wait to see Peter Capaldi rock on in series 8.

Doctor Who: Series 7

Oh I have such mixed opinions on this series.

I really enjoy the majority of it but the things that are wrong really, really, like really ×1000 just infuriates me! It already starts off with a serious headscratching decision for bringing Amy and Rory back. Why? Their story is over, we had that wonderful goodbye in The God Complex for a reason, The Doctor did not want to see them be killed in front of him and they were ready to start a normal life. So why bring them back, and to add insult to injury they decide that they need to be divorced. What?? The reason itself makes no sense and the "divorce" lasts all of one episode, it is both introduced and ended in one single episode. Oh boy that was suuuure a smart decision, oh man that had such weight to the story. It is made of stupid! I still enjoy their company, they bring a unique dynamic to the show, having a home life while still adventuring, they are great fun and how can I hate Mr. Weasley being Rory's dad? But then and I've already talked about it enough, they die. For absolutely zero reason. Less than zero reason! Why bring them back for like 5 episodes then just kill them off? And don't tell me it was for story arc purposes of this series because I've come up with a better chain of events and still keep the continuity! Keep the Doctor travelling on his own, keep the whole asylum of Daleks, have him meet Oswin, and then keep him going solo. Come up with a story where The Doctor gets careless and emotional and comes within a hair's width of destroying the Earth, a second Gallifrey, and he is ashamed of himself because he almost lost the only family he has in the universe, he refuses to ever see Amy and Rory again and basically retires. We go to The Snowmen and buisness as usual. Done! Perfect! No senseless killing for no reason whatsoever. Yet the episodes before that are done well, absolutely superfluous but has good writing, great effects, interesting stories but it all culminates with The Angels Take Manhattan. Their deaths are still a bitter sting but I feel that the Weeping Angels took it full on up the ass, to the point where they lose all mystique and horror. So can they inhabit statues or not? I always saw it as the Angels are well, angels and that there is a possibility that a statue in a major city could be an angel but not all of them are. Yeah this episode has the balls to claim the Statue Of Liberty itself is a Weeping the city...that never sleeps, in a city with millions of people in it, regardless of day or night, there is not. One. Single. Ffffff***ing EYEBALL on the Statue Of Liberty!!? Get f***ed! I call infinite amounts of bullshit on that! First the whole Demons Run thing and now this cockamamie waste of time and writing. Ugh, I'll be back.

I just, nevermind. Nevermind. You done f***ed it up and you decided not to unf*** it, just nope! Let sleeping dogs lie, son of a bitch! Okay, got to move on for the sake of my sanity. After that it's all still pretty damn good! Clara is such a good companion, she's just a wonderful match for this Doctor and their relationship and chemistry is flawless. All their episodes are good and the mystery surrounding Clara keeps you guessing until the end. And the payoff is pretty good I think. I love the fact we have Richard E. Grant, a wonderful actor and one I am very fond of gets to be a bit of a recurring villain, he plays this part so well with such malice and becomes an unstoppable and formidable foe. Hell to the yeah! I think they took notes on this for future villains. We even get a sterling addition in my opinion with the daughter of Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart, oh Kate how I adore thee. She's truly wonderful and fits right in with the cast and stories, and I love it so much! Will admit however the Cybermen just don't work for me, in just about every aspect. Design wise the whole Cybermen style has been based on a progressive format, they gradually became more advanced and better each time we see them, but then they just went a bit off course. Not only do they look like Iron Man, arc reactor and all, but the face design screams more japanese chibi style cuteness than terror. Plus they are way, WAY too overpowered! I mean the whole point of Cybermen is kind of a zombie thing, they get you by their overwhelming mass amounts of numbers, now one single Cybermen can convert or delete the entire human race, Flash style superspeed, ability to adapt to attacks much like the Borg in Star Trek, can detach limbs to kill or convert people, has advanced weapon systems, and they can fly, again very much like Mr. Stark, repulsor hands and all! Now fine, you need to up the badass quality of them, make them more deadly, sleek, and more difficult to destroy, but this goes so far out there I can't even see it anymore. And they only get worse from here. They did the Daleks the same too! Oh my God, I almost forgot! This made me rant for like an hour, okay so the concept of Daleks using human slaves is totally cool, I can see that idea, it has been mentioned many times they use slave labor of some variety, but the way they try to do it here just makes you want to pistol whip the writers in the dick. Oh're going to think I'm just lying straight to your face but it's true! Okay, so they take a human and convert them into essentially a Dalek, not in the shell where they are these gooey tentacle creatures, no no no no no, a fraking eyestalk juts out from their forehead and the death ray erupts from their hand kinda like with Scorpion in the Mortal Kombat movie. Everything else is human. Annnnd my IQ is dropping by the milisecond. Why not just use brainwashed humans? What's with the frankly ridiculous transformations? Why do they have these Dalek/steampunk S&M bodysuits? Why do they act like a Dalek's secretary??! I am dead sucking ferious right now. Oh holy crackers with cheese, this series is a walking nightmare sometimes! Which is odd because the writing is good for the most part, character development and interactions are still great, I still enjoy the majority of episodes, the second half of the series is great! Yet it just keeps shooting itself in the gnards and I will never know why! Screw it, watch the series from The Snowmen onward, it's short but it's sweet. Hardly any stupid nonsense, good moments, great character interactions, fun but interesting stories, and it all leads up to an epic occasion. Join me next time for the 50th anniversary specials!

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 6

See this is where and more importantly when I was a big fan.

This is the series I watched from the beginning live every week until the very end, with every twist, revelation, and foreshadowing moment fresh to my eyes. And I do still really enjoy it, for Matt's second series it does do everything on a bigger scale but is it better? Well we first start off with a rather interesting two-parter that was actually filmed in America, the first time in the show's history, set in Utah where The Doctor is rather shockingly killed before his companions and I don't mean regeneration, I mean he's a corpse now. But since we have time travel in the mix the same Doctor from the past appears and we follow the adventures and figure out (kinda) what exactly happened to result in his death. It's a very clever way to start the series because we've seen many movies start off with a huge climax but then we rewind and follow the series of events, so this is a unique take for the show that really hasn't happened since Trial Of A Timelord which is excellent by the way, go watch that, so we know how it ends yet it still grabs you. We kick off with a very interesting story based around the Apollo 11 moon landing which introduces us to a new alien under the monicrum of The Silence, who cannot be remembered if you stop looking at them, a kind of warped Weeping Angels system. We'll get back to them in a bit. After that we have a mixed bag of adventures, Curse Of The Black Spot is a bit of fun with pirates in tow. But the Rebel Flesh is absolute garbage and I have no problem saying it, mainly because it surrounds around clones of people who retain the memories of the original host and they try to fight for survival. This story has been told 10 million times better in many different sci-fi books, with better writing, characters, and dilemmas, it is so shoddily written with no real threat or importance except for pretty much a shock twist ending. It is the only reason it exists, and I can fully say you can skip it because I told you the premise. But it almost gets swept away because of the perfection that is The Doctor's Wife, a wonderful episode written by Neil Gaiman, he of the masterfully written Sandman series and American Gods and he even wrote Coraline. And if you know anything about his writting he is basically the supreme king of personifying ideas and objects, so what if the Tardis itself was infused with a young woman and her and The Doctor have a fun, lovable, and truly heart wrenching adventure? Well I'll give you a hint, I could praise it all damn day. The writing and character interactions are outstanding, going from sweet and loving to surprisingly dark and screwed up. Throw in the villain voiced by Michael Sheen who is quickly becoming one of my boys, an absolutely sublime actress who plays the human version of our beloved time machine, and a quite frankly emotion crushing ending makes this one of the best Doctor Who episodes we've seen so far. You can keep your Girl In The Fireplace, I will take The Doctor's Wife thank you very much. Then we have another new addition to the show format, we have a mid-season break after the really good but also really maddening episode A Good Man Goes To War. Now this hits spoilers a tiny bit but you'll still be fine. So let me lay this out and see if you can spot a problem: So it turns out before Amy and Rory even went to America, Amy was replaced by a clone and while the clone was travelling about, Amy was pregnant and is about to give birth. She has been kidnapped by this.....I don't even know, because she wakes up in like this super secret military base, and there is an army there dedicated to fighting and killing The Doctor and the more I think about it I'm having Arkham Knight flashbacks with this little plot point, like they have intel, are armed to the teeth, and have no doubts about ending this man's life. However! We don't know this militia's name, intention, their origins, or anything. It is literally just an army who want The Doctor dead. No reason why! None. At all. So instead of facing him head on or setting a trap, they kidnap his preggers best friend which shock of all shocks pisses him off! Heavily. So much to the point he starts calling in favors all over in time and space to siege the base and rescue his friend. I'll give you a million bucks if you can guess who loses. Now on paper this sounds awesome, The Doctor calling in favors and amassing an army to battle this unknown force to rescue his friend, but they do precisely dick to explain this opposing force. They handwave it away later on in the last frick fraking episode, but wait there's more! This series is trying soooo hard to CW, 90210, Gossip Girl this f***ing series by eluding that maybe Amy doesn't love Rory and that she and The Doctor made a half Time Lord baby. FFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUU-

I'm back. Just......really? R-really? Might one inquire as to why this decision was made? Because me in my stupid little ape mind just wanted to watch a fun sci-fi adventure show meant for all ages, but there I go again being a silly old bean!

Okay. I'm fine now. My head hurts, there's a little blood, but I'm completely fine now. So, where was I? Oh right, the episode is okay let's move on to the second half. Let's Kill Hitler is a decent follow up to that episode, good plot stuff there. Night Terrors is an okay episode, just something normal. The Girl Who Waited is kind of fascinating with Amy trapped in a faster timeline so she grows older and older while Rory and The Doctor try to get her back, but the episode is so inhumanely slow that it was really hard for me to stay awake through which is a shame cause Karen acts her heart out in that. The God Complex is outstanding in content, and actually has one of the best and yet depressing endings to an episode ever. I'm serious this episode is like 9/10 just for the ending, it's so reminiscent of classic Doctor Who and the final shot still brings a tear to my eye. We have a lovely return from Craig, taking place a few years after The Lodger before the big series finale. Which they kinda screwed up but nevertheless is a really good ending and sets up future events fairly well. And I'm going to be real with you, I never anticipated the ending but it filled me with theories galore after it was over the first time I saw it. So how was this season? In some places, it was amazing! In some places, it made me want to pour bleach into my brain! Take from that what you will.

I think series 7 is an improvement. But I don't trust anything right now.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 5

Oh memory lane here we come.

I think I finally remembered how I was introduced to the show, how it all started. I kept seeing adverts for the new episodes of Doctor Who, and they were late adverts too, nearing the end of this series. But nevertheless I was intrigued and maybe caught a bit of an episode though I can't remember which, and I started watching the marathons while this series was still going on. And yet I feel Matt is my Doctor, and in a way it's true, I remember watching his series one after the other, there on my sofa at 8:00 for every new episode! And honestly after all this time I still love this series and every episode is well done and should be watched. So, new Doctor, new companion, new opening, new everything! After a rather aggressive regeneration our new Doctor crashes into a young girl's garden and discovers a visible crack in the universe, and through a severely wounded Tardis he comes back over a decade later with the young girl grown up and so they travel amongst the stars on adventures and try to discern the cause for the cracks in the very universe itself. I think now that writing has shifted from Russell T. Davies to Steven Moffat, you'll notice a new storytelling aspect, Davies dropped hints here and there about the ultimate endgame for the series finale but Moffat centers the series around a conflict and the resolution of the conflict by the series finale. More of I guess a modern take where there's a huge event which is the result of a master plan that must be unfurled by our hero, and it's not bad at all because it causes speculation, theorizing, and something extra to provide the show beyond the elements we already love. I'm fine with that, and the adventures are so varied in time and setting and situation it never gets dull or predictable. Granted it slightly bites the show in the rear later on with the expanding mysteries, but for now it works. And I know so many people who just quit after David left, and I feel that to be such a shame cause Matt's first series is a damn good one! I love Matt to the moon and back for his potrayal of The Doctor, more fun and energetic like a child but still holds great wisdom and spirit. Which makes sense cause Matt is the youngest actor to play our favorite Time Lord since Peter Davison, and he is adorable sometimes! He really can play that full gambit from cute and fun to serious and dramatic and everything in between, I just love him. We have another ginger companion, this time so scottish it would almost put Jamie to shame and Karen Gillan is a dream, I adore her so but I feel her character is just a bit off. It starts out as adventures with friends and then out of nowhere she just wants to snog him. Hwhat?? I take such a grievance with this new companion viewpoint, can't companions just be friends with The Doctor and they both care about each other greatly and leave it at that? You don't need this bullshit romance, it will never happen so why even try? Just cease and desist! Aside from those quite frankly kind of uncomfortable character slips, I love her! Though her boyfriend is a tiny bit of a whiner, does this show just hate male companions? Captain Jack at least was game, I mean he did try to hop in bed with everything but you can't deny his likeability! Rory gets better though about halfway through the series, so I can't complain much there. River comes back and Alex Kingston...she is absolutely smashing in this series, in the acting sense and the looks sense, this woman is amazing and I fully ship her and Matt's Doctor hardcore, bit cougar-ish I know but they're cute dammit! Oh God, I'm rambling. Gotta get back on track. All the episodes are really good, we get the Daleks back with some rad new designs, the Silurians return not seen since the 80s if memory recalls with sleek new designs, an interesting return for the Weeping Angels, and much much more. Best episode hands down, Vincent And The Doctor. God dang it, that ending is still too much for me, it was already a very good episode but the ending just made it excellent. Just thinking about it now makes me want to weep, just flat out ugly cry because it touched my heart deep in the feels and I will never recover! Also The Lodger gets massive brownie points because it is so funny, and such a different episode but so so very welcomed in my eyes. Though I will freely admit I wish they just dropped a flippin' bomb on the audience for the finale, now I won't spoil it but for those of you who know it well and for those who will see it just remember these thoughts: Could you imagine if there was no second part to the finale? It just ended right there and you had to wait until the next entire series for a resolution. Oh my God. It would be talked about for years to come, people would be blowing up message boards and fan sites throwing theory after theory out, think The Reichenbach Fall but with Doctor Who. Maybe that's where Steven got the idea. I mean it gets dark and looks pretty much hopeless, Doctor Who rarely ever gets the chance to just stun the world into silence with an ending. The only time that really happened was Earthshock, in more ways than one, that could hear a pin drop at the end of that. People still talk about it, and for good reason, it did the unthinkable in a groundbreaking and incredible way. We need more of that! If we didn't even have music over the credits, just text crawl on pitch black background it would have been a big moment. Not complaining but come on, you have to give me a bit of credit! But anyway, awesome new everything, fully recommend it, Matt will always be nearest and dearest to my heart and we have quite a bit of time with him yet.

Next series, get ready for another real bomb this time.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Doctor Who: The Specials

Not the Christmas specials, the special specials.

You get a Christmas special every series it's like the Queen's speech. So yeah the last 3 specials from David's tenure are still really damn good. Planet Of The Dead is very basic but the companion in this case Christina is a bit too good, she's right on The Doctor's level for adventure and excitement and I wouldn't feel bad at all seeing her again I mean she is an absolute joy to watch, it's just a bit of fun, a nice Easter special with quite an ominous warning for things to come. Next, quite possibly the most depressing Christmas special I've ever seen, The Waters Of Mars is stellar and it's not to do with the setting, the monsters, or the action. It all comes down to the characters, we've heard The Doctor speak of fixed points in time, unchangeable history and to see this quite honestly startling view of him at the end is worth it. I take that back the whole ending is worth it, they nailed that emotional crux of the episode and they ran with it to the bank, it still makes me tear up a bit. Just further proof for David's great acting talent, he is absurdly superb in this. I mean, wow they brought their A-game to this episode. Planet Of The Dead was just fun, this is....Jesus, I dare say powerful. Which leads us to the most ambitious finale I think we'll see for quite some time with The End Of Time. They really put their all into making this a grand finale for David Tennant, they make it one of the most emotional regeneration stories I've seen, with tons of stuff going on concerning the Time Lords. But really I think the story could have been anything and all the emotion would still be there. Now I've heard quite a backlash to this one, hearing that oh the regeneration went on for too long, it was too overdone, it was just trying to squeeze every drop of emotion it could out of people, but in my special case it took me years to finally see this finale. I finished series 4 very quickly and never knew how he regenerated, something about radiation or another but not knowing the full story literal years after I finished David's run. I wasn't even gonna watch Matt Smith's first series until I knew. But it payed off, it's a last goodbye for the most celebrated and loved Doctor quite possibly ever, and to see him do just a few more good things for his past companions is very sweet. Though the last goodbyes with Sarah Jane and Wilf just shred my heart to pieces. Really any scene with just Wilf and The Doctor makes me weep, just those quiet moments where they just sit and talk speaks volumes and knows exactly how to tug on our heartstrings. I cannot begin to tell you how wonderful Donna's grandpa is, he's the best and I love him now and forever and I will fight you in the streets if you say one bad thing about him. God dang it, no tears. I can't do this now, I'm sorry.

Ugh, curse these emotions. But for the last three hurrah's for Mr. Tennant, it was done incredibly well. Adieu adieu, parting is such sweet sorrow. But next time, we meet my Doctor.

Doctor Who: Series 4

Yeah this is the best season.

I think they really did plan this all out. I mean from The Christmas Invasion to Journey's End scale of planning, Marvel planning here folks! Why? Because this finale not only puts every other finale to shame we've seen so far, but the size, scale, amount of characters, and plot threads that get tied up, it does kinda make you wonder! But beyond the awesome finale, how's the rest of the series? Well I personally think it's the best of the Tennant era. Partners In Crime is a much welcome return for Donna Noble, and the comedic and dramatic chemistry between them is excellent. The Fires Of Pompeii is a great episode and has a certain significance that we learn much later down the road. The Sontarans make a nice return and I swear I haven't seen them since the 70s, so that was cool. A murder mystery with Agatha Christie is as fun as you think, with interesting twists and turns. But beyond the finale there is something very, very important shown here, the introduction of River Song. This aspect alone made series 4 special, a time traveller who knows The Doctor in every way and her story comes to a close and yet has only just begun. Incredible. It's pretty much the first series with no real episodes worth skipping though I do take slight issue with some. Midnight may work as a horror-esque episode but the constant screaming and nagging drives me up the wall to be honest, it gives me a headache. And then there's Turn Left. Now I understand the concept and intention, simple decisions can affect the world, alternate realities can become morphed with ours. But the idea that The Doctor what, drowned, because he was so intent on watching the Racnoss queen die? Bullshit and demons! Don't buy it for a minute, alternate reality or not, you are just wrong. So that episode has nothing for me but if there's anything Doctor Who does, it's foreshadow and pay off. First series was Bad Wolf, then it was Torchwood, then it was Mr. Saxon, and now it's planets disappearing and something unseen on Donna's back. Always repeated, hinted at, until the reveal at the end of the series. Thankfully the planets disappearing payed off better, pretty much wrapping up everything from every series before except for the time war. I had a lot of fun and grew very attached to Donna, and their adventures are still ranked upon the greatest. This was a well crafted and expertly executed series, top notch, great all around, and worth watching!

But everything has it's end, so I will be covering David's last few specials before we hit series 5 tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 3

Now we're reaching the prime time for Doctor Who.

I vastly enjoyed series 3 more than both series 1 and 2, I'm not sure if this series is better than the last but it all comes down to people's opinions in the end. Yet even I was enjoying myself much more, probably because it felt like an established season, yes we still get a new companion but this was really when both the showrunners and David started making it their own. Of course that's not to say the last two series were bad or a product of poor craftsmanship, they did a great job reintroducing the show with Chris and then built more on it with David's first series, but this is when it really hit it's stride for me! There's only one episode you could skip, the rest are all great and some of which still have an impact on the show to this day so clearly they were doing their best to make this series the greatest yet and it shows. After the shocking ending to the finale we pick up with The Runaway Bride which is a lot of fun for a Christmas episode before we head into the series proper with Smith & Jones. Now before, I gave Martha not a lot of credit but all because of one thing, she gets all doe eyed at the Doctor and crushes on him hard, I remember days where companions were just travelling friends and had great respect for The Doctor but didn't exactly want a relationship. I know it's a product of these times but it feels so....CW. That's not a good thing (but I still love you Supernatural) but beyond that I dig her as a companion, especially how she pretty much singlehandedly made the good guys win in the series finale but she's fun, intelligent, and a wonderful emotional and morale compass for the series. I have to admit though it really took them over 40 years to have a companion who wasn't white as snow? And no I don't count Mickey as a companion, he had two onscreen adventures before going off. We had flippin' robots as companions before we got other races onboard the Tardis, and no I haven't gotten my hands on any Big Finish audio dramas so don't bring those up, but yeah that's a bit weird but change is always welcome, especially in this show. After that it's just about hit after hit of episodes! Shakespeare Code is awesome, I genuinely love Gridlock, the Daleks In Manhattan is a bit hokey but okay. It was great seeing Mark Gatiss get a part in an episode, and an interesting one at that. The Family Of Blood is an even more fascinating episode with tons to love and appreciate, least of all David's acting skills. Blink is a modern horror master stroke that could be a movie on it's own today and still genuinely and completely unnerves me. I mean Jesus, don't watch it at night, especially before bed. I learned that the hard way. And the so far unrivaled 3 part finale is pretty spectacular in terms of scale, story, and character. I won't say much more but man is it more awesome if you've seen older Doctor Who episodes from the 70s and 80s! The only one you can wholeheartedly skip is 42, it's not bad but it does seem very filler but beyond that, great series! It's a shame we only really have one more series with David though, it's a funny buisness're gone for ages, you've already gone, you're still here, you've just arrived, I haven't even met you yet. It really does put it into perspective sometimes at how much time you get to see a person before they leave. But if memory does serve correctly, his last one went out with a bang.

Time to move on. To see familiar faces, enemies new and old, history in the making, and an unfamiliar face soon to be known.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 2

It's good to see David again.

Oh boy I'm probably going to get such hate mail over this but here we go. Series 2 of Doctor Who is definitely an improvement over the first, true there's still some hit and major miss stories but overall I enjoyed it more than the first. It really does feel like the writers found their groove and stuck with it until really Matt Smith came on board but there is a reason for that. So where were we? Oh that's right, Mr. Tennant. The beginning of many a fangirl's obsession in this show's history, seriously I'm hardpressed to find someone who doesn't like David Tennant as The Doctor. Now I'm not saying he's overrated, he is really incredible, practically born to play this role, his charm and personality are synonymous with Doctor Who nowadays. And he really won hearts over the course of four whole series, even being able to challenge Tom Baker as the best which is tough to do for anybody. Lord knows how Peter Davison felt. But anywho, we still have Rose on board and I still like her (kinda), I'm not quite sure who I like her better with though, the 9th or 10th Doctor, but regardless she has great chemistry with David, and Billie is still great friends with him all this time later. However I have things to say...about the finale. Um, could you lower the pitchforks please? I'll come back to it later. The style remains much of the same but more noticeably refined, and the effects all around have gotten better. The stories though are mixed. I hate New Earth, so much it drives me insane, it reads like a 15 year old wrote fanfiction with all that nonsense innuendo and subpar setting but it still works if you can look past it's faults for the most part. School Reunion was my personal favorite, I mean come on it's hard to go wrong with bringing back the best companion of the lot and the dynamic it provides is both fun and incredibly endearing. The Girl In The Fireplace practically is worshipped by fans though I found it to just be nice and with some legitimate good moments with a gorgeous score. The Cybermen story was cool but after that boy does it spiral down. Love & Monsters, need I say more? Just don't watch it, listen to me for at least once please do not do this to yourself. It is bad and Fear Her ain't much better. Anything else I want to bring up before I'm eviscerated? Uh, Murray Gold is an outstanding composer, there's more nonsense about dangerous adventures, the last bit before the end of the series is still really funny to me, oh and Torchwood is a massive raging prick and I swear every episode was throwing that name out like a 90s show trying to make a catchphrase stick, Elisabeth Sladen is still royalty and forever shall be, we get some absolutely stand out acting from the headmaster in the same episode with her I mean it is a crime we haven't seen more of him in this show. But um....okay, this is spoilers kinda but it gets brought up again and again for many series to come so it is necessary. I have nothing against the Doomsday finale, it brings Daleks and Cybermen together for the first time and it's great, returning the just recently established parallel worlds was nice, but I don't like the ending. Not in a, this has emotionally devastated me and I do not like it, I mean it did nothing for me. First off, the whole relationship thing, just....ick, incredibly wrong, dumb as a rock I would say. Sorry but the companions are not girlfriend material and I completely disagree with it, it's a crush she has and nothing more but they keep trying to hammer it in and it honestly makes Rose unlikable. Fast. People kinda lost their minds when the 8th Doctor kissed his companion back in 1996, you'd think they learn. Rose's "death" had no emotional impact for me, now when I first saw it and I watched her hands lose grip I freaked the hell out! Like whoa, are they really gonna kill a companion? Little did I know they have done it before and will continue to do so. But then oop, she gets saved and it honestly should have just ended with him walking away from the wall. The whole "dream" made me roll my eyes in contempt, which PS. You can never argue that it was a good idea, but the whole teary eyed beach scene just killed the emotion for me. All you need is them on opposite sides of the wall with that fantastic score playing, and The Doctor walks down the hall and we see him in his Tardis crying. Perfect, good emotional impact, didn't overstay it's welcome, a shocking end to the series. It would have blown people's minds. But noooo! Here's some scene ripped out of The Notebook and the two of them (mostly) confessing their love. Great job guys. Ugh! So yeah, ending was a mess, had it's fair share of awfulness, but regardless series 2 is very good and was only the beginning for future travels of many people's favorite Doctor. So if series 1 got your attention and you wish to see more, well knock yourself out! Just skip the last two before the finale, trust me on this.

Series 3 tomorrow, definitely need to see that one again. So what will happen next after this crushing and unexpected ending for The Doctor? Time will tell, it always does.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Doctor Who: Series 1

Time enough at last.

Yeah the day was never far away when we traverse in time and space, watching the longest sci-fi series in history. But I am so happy I did, it's been ages since last I watched Doctor Who! Not since Peter left but different time, different place...sort of. But this was the first for me and how did it all begin? I have absolutely no idea. There was a time I never heard of The Doctor, a TARDIS, what a Dalek is, or even what a sonic screwdriver looked like. And then it was there one day out of the blue, in 2010 when I was digesting series after series on BBC America at my grandparent's house. Needless to say I was hooked. And you know what, this is a very admirable beginning to a revival of a show that hasn't been around since the late 80s. I thoroughly enjoyed series one, I love our Doctor as he was the first for many as he enters the world of young Rose Tyler as he takes her on many adventures through space and time. So let's talk about the episodes first before we get into pros and cons. The majority of the episodes, at least 90% are all good though I will admit The Empty Child was sort of blah for me except for Captain Jack. The series starts off perfectly, it ends perfectly, there's lots of good moments and a few great characters that people still remember today. But as always the devil is in the details! Our Doctor in his 9th incarnation really and I do mean really, doesn't get the appreciation he deserves. I always liked Christopher Eccleston in this role and I've only grown to love him more and more each time I see him. He is so different and built this mystery once again for new and even old audiences, he's cheeky and fun but hides deep emotional scars from a cataclysmic war that completely wiped out his race and you see that wrath and deep sadness throughout the series. And his effects are still felt today, it is because of this Doctor that made the show more popular than it ever was and for that he has my respect. I really like our first companion, Rose is a formidable match for The Doctor, is quick on her feet, inquisitive, and has become a beloved companion because of her relatability and charm. Plus her story arc is one of the more interesting stories in the new series. And I...mostly like our side characters. Now Jack Harkness is awesome, John Barrowman is the man and can charm the pants off of anybody ever, and the actress who plays the female Slitheen is sort of okay in Aliens Of London but she frickin' owns Boom Town, I mean spectacular acting! But when it comes to Rose's mom and boyfriend, ugh. I mean they get better but it's pretty insufferable in this series, especially with Mickey being a total bitchy twat. And this aspect bugs me but I kinda get why they did it, throughout not just this series but every other one, characters bring up the question of, is it safe to travel with The Doctor? Oh he's dangerous, leads a life with death and devastation in his wake which okay fine, it's kind of true. It always has been true but it's this new and honestly for the better thinking, you couldn't run off with a stranger time machine or not. Back in the 60s and 70s nobody really cared, you just went on adventures and fought aliens and monsters, absolutely no questions asked even if you were bloody teenagers! But the world has evolved and the creators looked at the old series and brought up modern moral questioning. I can appreciate that effort, but here's the thing: I don't give a flying got-damn hell about that because this show is supposed to be pure escapism fun! It's true but damn, I do not watch a family orientated sci-fi show to debate on moral and philisophical grounds, I watch it to enjoy the fun and creativity. And this aspect only bothers me more and more until it's culmination in series 8 or 9 to the point where I'm bashing my skull in. Something else I actually never noticed before is well, the first series has a bit of cheese to it and most of the time it is done straight and done well. However! Though the effects aren't excellent I can give a bit of pardon to the TV show in 2005. But the weird musical stingers for creepy scenes, in fact the creepy scenes themselves, they just feel very Goosebumps. Some of the acting is a bit off but the vast majority is done really damn well. There wasn't much to hate beyond a few aggravating bits, the stories are still solid despite them but some details throw it off a bit. But I've met people before that have no issues at all so you have to judge for yourself. The first revival series of Doctor Who is a fine beginning and should be seen even if you have reservations with the show, you'll know if you want more by the end of the series. I give it 3.5 stars, check it out and give Chris some credit, he is criminally underrated.

Tomorrow, new beginnings and quite possibly the most loved Doctor of them all.

Friday, August 16, 2019

Good Boys

Honestly guys...this could have been so much worse.

I genuinely enjoyed Good Boys, it has a lot of good humor and isn't just funny because a 12 year old said the F word and doesn't know what a sex swing is. It is really damn funny, and the writing for our main leads feels incredibly natural and real despite their young age. I was a bit shocked at first, but then I took a step back and looked at how I was when I was in 6th grade and it was pretty much spot on. Being able to cuss like a sailor but still be completely innocent and unknowing to the more adult areas in life, so I got an immediate connection to the kids. I especially love how they pretty much simultaneously cover all their bases, with Lucas being a kind and completely innocent soul while still having a bit of a mouth, Thor (yes really) being more of a punk but still has a heart of gold, and our main lead Max being a combination of both a genuinely good kid who can still be a wiseass. But not to the point they are unbearably stupid or needlessly mean spirited, they are kids and kids can be anything really. Also, the writing for them feels very natural and grounded while for the other kids it feels stereotypical almost to the point of being caricatures, thus making the audience enjoy and like our main leads. Now if it was just a decent comedy with really good kid actors that would be fine, but in the third act after you think the finale just happened and credits will start to roll it shifts gears into a more drama focused ending. Throughout the movie it has some genuine nice and even kind of emotional moments where they acknowledge their friendship and the fact that they sort of grow apart. Everyone has had a friend or even a group of friends they were thick as thieves with, but as time passed and you grew up, maybe they drifted away or perhaps you formed a stronger bond with one and not so much with the other. And it handles it incredibly well, making a somewhat bittersweet yet still funny ending which truthfully not a lot of movies can do. They put extra effort into the writing to give us that additional enjoyment, now the movie doesn't entirely focus on it but the moments that are there are pretty great if I'm being on the level with you. Now me personally, I've had great luck with friends that I've made, with the relationships already sort of formed in the status quo where nothing really major or bad happened, with friendships lasting years until eventually they or I moved on naturally, whether it be moving on to a brand new school or simply moving. And let's really be honest, that sucks man. You don't ever want to really lose friends after you've spent years hanging out with them. So I must give some serious credit to this movie for going that extra mile and not just being another comedy. It keeps it real and doesn't shy away from real life situations. So with that added on top, I give the film a solid 7/10, 3 stars definitely check it out if you need a funny movie with some genuine heart.

And so next week it begins. The longest marathon of television seasons I am probably ever going to do. 11 seasons, plus specials for the next two whole weeks. But what show holds that honor? Whatever it is, it's gonna be fantastic. Absolutely fantastic.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

In Retrospect: Detective Pikachu

I finally figured it out guys.

The thought occured to me while I was watching this movie, why is Detective Pikachu the absolute best video game movie? What makes this film have the secret ingredient that other video game movies have tried and failed to have for decades? Other movies have not entirely replicated their games, the Super Mario Bros. Movie took liberties with the story, Street Fighter The Movie didn't follow the plot perfectly, yet this one worked. Why? And it took me forever to find out but now I know, Pokemon has no story. It just doesn't. What is the plot of Pokemon Red and Blue? You journey out into the world, collect fantastical creatures, and challenge leaders of various gyms until in the end there can be only one. And that is why this movie works! You can do whatever you wish with the story and it would completely work. Pokemon is a crafted miracle, this series has existed for just as long if not longer than myself, so 25 years, and though it hasn't reached that Pokemania fever in the late 90s leading into the new millenium again, it is still popular, still beloved, still embedded in pop culture. Now I'm not saying Pokemon could be the one and only video game series that could eveeerrrr be made into a movie, with the right creative team you could make a Legend Of Zelda movie, you could make a Halo movie, You could make an Earthbound movie for crying out loud! It is all possible. Now let's be harshly true with ourselves, video game movies are nearly impossible to make and make well. But Pokemon is that golden child because it has just enough of reality mixed with the fantastical elements to make it work, it has always been a feasible movie to make. You take our normal everyday world, throw in some creative creatures, and bam you got a series you could do anything with. It's really quite amazing. Plus you add perfect timing with my generation having kids of their own and this was always going to be a surefire hit! But does the film work on repeat viewing when you know the solution to the mystery? Ehhhh....some things really work, I love what they did with Ditto, I love the fact they pull a 1989 Batman with the gas balloons, the stuff they subvert is well done, buuut seriously the kid just...forgot his dad's voice? Was it really that hard to defeat the villain? In fact the villains plan was a bit, huuuh?? So yeah, the ending is a bit mixed but when more than half the movie is a fun, enjoyable, colorful, and very entertaining movie you don't mind too much. Still needs more Snorlax though. I mean could you imagine if he got dosed with that gas and just blasted hyperbeams and pulled a Man Of Steel, just levelling skyscrapers? Tonally inconsistent, yes. Incredible joygasm, ohhhh yeeeeah. I know he's practically shaped like a friend, and honestly I can't praise the art direction with the pokemon enough, but come on! Give my boy some love! Still a 7/10 despite the slight issues, can't wait to see more.

Monday, August 12, 2019

School Of Rock

You know, for a movie over 15 years old (and you just let that sink in for a minute) it honestly hasn't lost any of it's charm or enjoyment for me.

I can't remember exactly when I first saw School Of Rock, I know I definitely rented it at one point so I must have been fairly young maybe 10 or so, but it has a lasting impression on me. More on that later but first, story time! So our story begins with our man Jack Black as a guitar player named Dewey that gets kicked out of his old band, and in need of a steady gig impersonates his roomate who's a substitute teacher and gets into a prep school. After learning about his student's musical talents he forms a rock band and grows a great relationship with the kids as they perfect their craft for a battle of the bands event. First off, there is no way in hell that this movie could have worked without Jack Black, I mean he has that energy and appeal plus he can totally act and even play. He's the best part of the movie, but his co-stars aren't outshined. These are cool kids, pretty much perfect acting from all with extra love and admiration going to Summer, Zack, and Tomika. Granted some kids are more in the background but they get their moments and with an ensemble cast this big it was unavoidable. Bottom line, the kids are awesome! But what's the point of talking about the movie if you don't bring up the soundtrack? I mean geez this film practically groomed me for my music taste! This film introduced me to a lot of artists that I've come to enjoy and appreciate like The Doors, Led Zeppelin, and AC/DC, bands I didn't know much about when I was younger but now am big fans of them all. If you straight up asked me what my favorite band is, it's either Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, or The Doors, it really did influence me that much. The music selection no matter how brief is really, really good with even the original songs being great. Lord knows I'd take a music class like that where I could be introduced to lots of different groups and appreciate their styles and songs. It really puts you in a good if not great mood by the end, it's easy to get invested in the story, to enjoy these characters and their interactions together. Jack Black is so good in this movie, he can talk to these kids about their problems and issues and be completely genuine while still having fun and being crazy. It's a damn good movie man, what can I say? I do hate the whole liar revealed nonsense, cause you know they're just gonna go rock out anyway, those scenes no matter the movie are padding. Plain and simple. But beyond that is there anything I even slightly dislike? Nope, I love how the opening shot is kind of a long take, I love all the actors, the story is original and fun, the music is all kinds of awesome, not much at all to hate here! 4 stars! See it again if you grew up with it, introduce it to your kids if they dig that kind of music, have fun with it, rock out, you just go have a ball. Okay I have to tell this story cause I have such good memories of this movie, waaaay back during the summer of 2007 I was on break at my grandparent's house, and Cartoon Network pretty much had a marathon of this movie for about 3 days and all I did was watch the movie, play some Guitar Hero (both 1 and 2), and had a great summer. I pretty much had my own version of Woodstock and it was pretty far out, granted it wasn't as massive or as wild as Woodstock but I loved every minute of it so I'm always in higher spirits when the School Of Rock starts rolling credits. And what's summer without some great tunes?

Friday, August 9, 2019


Ah, that hit the spot.

I'm so happy I saw this movie again, and I haven't seen it in years. The first time I saw it was in my english class in high school of all places. Why? I have no idea. And I never saw a fantasy movie like this before or even after, the story is simple but still has a lot of heart and adventuring, the soundtrack is all kinds of funky cool, the film is so unashamedly 80s and I wouldn't want it any other way. Our story follows a young thief Gaston played by Matthew Broderick, who escapes a prison before meeting a mysterious knight Naverre played by Rutger Hauer who requires his assistance to settle an old score. We slowly learn more about Naverre and the hawk who always accompanies him, which is revealed that a curse was placed upon the two of them. By day Naverre is a man, and by night he is a wolf while the hawk named Isabeau transforms into a beautiful woman by nightfall. I really like how it's not a straight up Beauty & The Beast story, that both these lovers are cursed and the tragedy ensues from the fact they can never truly see each other face to face. That is a brilliant idea that I haven't seen since! I fully can say this is a fantasy love story, yet another rare thing in this world and I do mean proper fantasy because it's based in medieval times. I greatly appreciate the romance it builds, they just don't talk about how much one loves the other, but you can see it in their actions and hear it in their voices and you want to see them have a happy resolution. The movie looks great with good portions being filmed in Italy and it looks excellent, with several real life castles being used, and very moody and atmospheric sets. All the actors are committed and give great performances, Matthew Broderick is a very fun and endearing thief with some great chemistry with our other main leads, Michelle Pfeifer though she has little on screen time as a human doesn't waste a second of it giving a lovely and sweet performance, and last but absolutely not least we have Rutger Hauer. I was very shocked and saddened to hear of his passing and it was truly wonderful to see him again, he outshines everyone with a performance that has mystery, tragedy, and a sense of humanity, his character has a lot to enjoy with a sense of humor, great brawn, and charm unparalleled. He almost seems like a D&D character come to the big screen and if I ever truly created a character I would base it on him. He has two scenes that really hit me, in one you can truly see and feel his heart be crushed in anguish, and in another he shows compassion and understanding. I know everyone points to Blade Runner for his acting talents and granted he is beyond spectacular in that movie, but I mean really if you watch him in any movie and you love him. It was great to see him in a hero role which he honestly got by pure luck and I'm happy he did. This was great fun to watch and I really enjoyed it so much more than the first time around. I know I would have just loved this movie when I was young, fantasy movies have always been my thing especially along with science fiction movies, and I've heard lots of stories about people who have been watching this movie since they were kids and still enjoy it. So you bet I give a huge recommendation for this movie, it hits that 80s fantasy adventure just right with brief but good comedy, swordfights, and even a very good love story. It may not be one of the greatest fantasy movies to some but I'll always appreciate and love it.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

In Retrospect: Alita Battle Angel

I love this movie!

I have great respect for Robert Rodriguez and James Cameron for doing this story properly. They took it seriously, and wanted to make a good movie based off of something most americans wouldn't go for. It's a risk but I think it payed off to bring an adaptation of a influential and beloved manga to western audiences. I took a step back as the movie played and I asked a simple question, could anybody enjoy this film? And as the film progressed and I really looked at how they handled everything, I really do feel that anybody could. The world has evolved since Blade Runner, that movie was a hard sell for audiences and wasn't very successful but it grew to be one of the best science fiction movies in history and even it had fans when it came out. The movie knows how to connect us to our main character, they make her so charming and lovable you are with her every step of the way, and the way they handle her story makes you interested and invested. They got Alita so right, not just from a character point of view but as the driving force for the audience. They explain the world but still leave intrigue to where anyone can come to terms with it and wants to know more. The romance works, the characters are still believable and have their charms, the world is interesting and cool, everything works just right. But they don't play all their cards at once, and I very much hope they make the rest of the series because they handled this first chapter incredibly well. This could be a great film series, hell in a weird sort of way I kind of associate it very much with films like Ladyhawke or The Last Starfighter or Big Trouble In Little China, this could be a kid's favorite movie growing up. It could make a kid's imagination run wild and they would love every second of it, they could put it on anytime and have a ball. It's understandable to a kid, kind of relatable, has a fascinating story, good characters, and action that gets them fired up and makes 'em want to play some motorball. I would have loved this movie when I was 8 years old! It really does harken back to the more underground films of the 80s, and I know it's right up some kid's alley. I mean it has a straight up F-word like any true PG-13 movie from the 80s, it just fits that mold perfectly. I would totally rent this movie on VHS if I could from a video store. The setting is dystopian but is still pretty and visually striking, all the effects are done expertly and Alita looks damn near real. I mean you don't even notice it's an effect early on because the movie grabs you and you roll with it. And I'll level with you, Alita Battle Angel was the first manga I actually read, and it's a great story! Sure it has some tropes in it that a lot of anime take note from but it works, it throws you for twists and curves and you want to see what the end goal is and how it ends. I know that series can make damn good movies and I really hope people give it a chance. It's worth the rental and you may want to see what happens next, but for me this is a definite buy. I mean let's face it the western culture isn't screaming for adaptations of japanese media, and they screw up sometimes. I mean poor Dragonball man and we won't even mention the atrocities of Netflix, but they did Ghost In The Shell very well and I still stand by my views on that being a good movie, they did Alita well and have a fantastic opportunity for more, friggin' Detective Pikachu was pretty much set for success due to my generation being Pokemon maniacs and the time was right, movies based on anime or manga is something different but when they get it right they get it very right. And I don't know about you but I'm in the mood for some more kickass lesser known and valued movies. I think I know just the one to see too.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Green Book

Okay, okay, I get it now.

I was very shocked to see Green Book win Best Picture at the Academy Awards, there was a lot of potential winners and Green Book was honestly the last on my list for winners. But now upon seeing it, it makes a hell of a lot more sense why it won. I saw the synopsis and trailers and it didn't look like a bad film, and when I finally watched it I can safely say this is a really damn good, if not great movie. The story centers around a jack of all trades regular joe named Tony who gets hired by a popular musician named Dr. Donald Shirley as his driver as they tour through the deep south. In the 60s. So a rough and ready Brooklyn boy is just what the doctor ordered as they tour and they form a friendship. And that's what I loved above all, you can fully tell they become great friends. They bicker like a married couple, the Doc always tells Tony off like a parent, their personalities offset each other perfectly. Doctor Shirley is a very sophisticated and polite man while Tony is a bit of a slob and has a bit of a bad attitude but by no means is a horrible person. He's just a normal guy who gets this job to drive this musician around and keep him safe, but as time goes on he gains more respect for the Doc and always stands up for him no matter what, fighting a lot of bigotry and standing by his friend even when he gets carted off to jail. It's a wonderful relationship played by two great actors. Viggo Mortensen is perfect in this role and is just so damn enjoyable, you really grow to like him fast. Mahershala Ali is great, I can't give him enough praise if I tried, he's funny, heartfelt, and very intelligent. I almost completely call bromance on this, I absolutely adore it. They even have a Christmas scene, Tony invites the Doc over for Christmas and it is so damn schmultzy I can't help but love it. I can fully appreciate the story, the people, and the head on potrayal of southern culture in the 60s. They have no issue just stating the facts of that time and place and don't shy away from it. It's a great movie and one I have no problem seeing again, I saw it over my break and knew immediately I had to contribute to the good things said about it, give it a shot if you're not sure whether you want to watch it, you won't regret it. And just as an added bonus for me we have Linda Cardellini being the supremely sweet and charming woman as she always is, and if that doesn't give a movie brownie points in my eyes not a damn thing will. 4 stars! Definite recommendation and next time we take a look back at a movie that split both audiences and critics but I was definitely in the love camp.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Once Upon A Time In Hollywood

I'm happy this was the movie to come back on.

I had a great opportunity to see the movie on legit 35mm film, and it did nothing but add more to the movie. Set in the late 60s, our story follows a film actor and his stunt double, played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt respectively, going about their daily lives in Los Angeles while we also briefly follow stars Roman Palinski and Sharon Tate. It's kind of a hard movie to describe, it's very slice of life set in a time capsule of 1968, so nothing major happens plot wise until near the end. It's very much a movie you can watch with friends but you better have some time on your hands. This movie pushes 3 hours but never does it drag or feel dull, I was fully enjoying the film all the way through and enjoying the style and scenery. The cast I felt was really damn good, Leonardo DiCaprio plays an aging movie star pretty much pitch perfect, you can keep your Titanic and Romeo & Juliet DiCaprio, I prefer him more like this. Brad Pitt and him have excellent screen chemistry, you can really tell they are friends and get along, plus I just love how Brad looks in this film. He fits that gruff cool stuntman from the early 70s look, I mean he just melds into this part. Margot Robbie though not having a major part in the film has some nice moments and well if you know the real life story of actress Sharon Tate you really don't want to see anything bad happen to her. But my absolute favorite is Julia Butters who plays a bit part on Leo's show, like they really have some great scenes together and I absolutely loved her performance. I don't even know why she just did that good a job, she plays a child actor wiser beyond her years and is just excellent! And I'm a sucker for the 60s I can't help it, and the cinematography even with film grain and scratches looks great! The colors still pop, it's not hazy or out of focus, it just immerses you further into the movie. The best way I can sum up the movie is, it's a Tarantino movie. And if you've liked the 9 movies he made before this, then no doubt you'll enjoy this one too, and even if you haven't I still recommend it. It's worth the time and you'll find something you enjoy in it, whether it be actors, the time period, music, visuals, no doubt you'll dig the ending. I mean damn, I wish the ending was the true ending. But nevertheless, 3.5 stars check it out! And I will be back next week with more.