Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Challenge: Battle of the Exes Finale

We left off last week in the middle of the last leg of the finale in Iceland.  I knew going to Iceland would mean they are eating the delicacies of Icelantic culture. I actually would want to try the shark and blood. CT drinking the blood like a champ was impressive.  It was like he did it as a hobby comparable to drinking Irish Car bombs in Boston.  I did feel sorry for Diem that she was a vegetarian since the 6th grade.  CT totally took one for her.
The puzzle and the tunnel through the snow were as expected.  Even though Diem has a career and is smarter than the others; she still managed to surprise me with the puzzles. Climbing on the other hand, I was surprised they made them go that far.  It was awesome to see them do it.

  • CT & Diem: I really wanted to see them win, and I just think CT is built for these challanges.  He's a machine, and he just broke down.  At least they didn't come in last.
  • Johnny & Camila: It was really annoying to see them win. I love that Johnny is really bad at puzzle just proves what a conniving idiot he is.
  • Ty & Emily: Emily and Johnny would have dominated this challenge if they were paired up.  The whole time you could see how they were being dragged down by their partners.
This Challenge wraps as the 22nd season, which means the Challenges are older than the demographic who watches them. I really hope they bring it next time around, and a good amount of the challengers come back for the competition. Or they need to do a "where are they now?" challenge themed show.  I would totally watch that.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Anchorman 2!

This blog may be a tv blog, but it is more of an entertainment blog.  Well mostly my musings, but one of the best things ever is going to be announced tonight on Conan.  Anchorman 2 is going to be made.  I am sooooo excited.  I cannot wait for Will Ferrell to reprise this role.

Did you know that Ron Burgundy was based on Jim Gardner of ABC6 news in Philadelphia.  His picture isn't too far off.

I cannot wait to watch Conan tonight!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Mad Men: Zou Bisou Bisou

Mad Men finally returned last night.  I planned to drink a Tom Collins and to catch up with our favorite ad agency, but I just drank wine instead.  Matt Weiner definitely started off the season with a bang.  We returned to Sterling, Cooper, Draper, Pryce a year after where we left them.  Joan has already had her baby.  Don Draper is married living in a posh apartment in New York City.  Megan seems really happy to be playing the role of wife and step mother.

The two hours were packed with Pete being a spoiled brat while Roger was trying to poach his clients, Pryce was day dreaming about an affair with a picture stolen from a wallet he found, Joan was falling into the role of new mother, and there were no signs of Betty.  Just a mention of Don calling her Elvira and Lurch when he dropped of his children.  This episode Don turned 40, and Megan surprised him with a surprise party.  Even Peggy knew this wasn't a good idea, but Megan went through with it.  This party caused the major conflict of the episode because Don wasn't appreciative of it, and this upset Megan.  She was so upset she left work early.  (I wish I could leave work any time I was upset.)

The true highlight was Megan performing Zou Bisou Bisou for Don at the surprise party.  He put on a good face, but we all knew Don would hate anything like that.  Can't wait for next episode, and for Joan's husband to finally die in Vietnam.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Challenge: Age versus Youth

Johnny Bananas not making it to the final would be the best outcome of this episode.  Camila and he were cocky, and the producers totally chose this dome to screw over Johnny.  I would like to see Emily, Ty, Diem, and CT win the most money.  It was endearing to see them pumping up Robin for the dome, even though it was self serving. She needs more of that in her life.

Iceland is on my list of places to travel, and it is really cool they are doing a cold weather challenge.
  • CT & Diem: They are doing so well, but I wonder how long it is going to last there usually is an upset.
  • Johnny & Camila: They made it.  I am wondering how they will fair against the others.  I don't see them as last place.  This is not good for CT and Diem.
  • Mark & Robin: I am so sorry they couldn't pull it off. Is Mark really retired?  And what does he do for a living?
  • Ty & Emily: I am surprised they aren't in second.  I guess I will blame the sled dogs for not wanting to run.
The icy plunge looked so crazy, and they immediately had to get naked afterwards.  I am still laughing about CT in the tent trying to pull a Titanic.  I think that Diem brings out the best in him.  This challenge has definitely showed his softer side.

Until next week, we'll see how Johnny tries to get in first place.  It is nice to see him unnerve by not being in first place. I cannot wait to see what else they have planned for next week.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Walking Dead: Season Finale

I actually had a zombie dream on Saturday night.  I have zombie dreams often, and they only began after I started watching The Walking Dead.  At the end of it I was running to a get away car with no shoes on, and I wasn't happy about that.  Needless to say, I was looking forward to tonight.  I spent some of my day watching the marathon leading up to the finale.  This season was really drawn out and annoying at times.  The woman are insufferable.  I really wish they could write strong characters that are women.  The best out of all of them is Maggie.  I like her the best, and glad to see when Vampire Diaries didn't work out that the actress found work on another great show.

The best episode by far was "18 Miles Out" from the opening to the lone walker in the field, to the two deputies dead, and the double tap of the zombie on the way out.  It was a great episode all around. 

This episode opened with scenes from Atlanta, and how a herd of zombies was headed to the farm.  From the beginning it was a heart pounding bloodletting of an episode, it was what we have been waiting for.

After a night of carnage, the survivors meet up where they left supplies for Sophia.  They quickly decide that it is unsafe to be on main roads.  They disperse, it looks like they are back to the peripatetic lifestyle. (It reminds me of Cormac McCarthy's The Road and Kerouac.  I am also loving the Mad Men, Walking Dead crossover marketing.  It is absolutely brilliant.)

The episode ends with Andrea being saved by an unknown figure who has two armless walkers on leashes.  Rick gives a speech about how it isn't a democracy anymore after so much dissent is voiced in the group.  He also reveals everyone is infected.  I wonder how that happened.  I hope it wasn't flu shots, I really regret getting one in 2006.

Even though this season was lackluster at times, we are set up for another chapter in the lives of our post-apocalyptic world survivors.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Challenge: Wings of Love

The episode opens with the decision from last week.  I agree with TJ dumbest decision in challenge history.  I am hoping that Emily and Ty have an alliance with Diem and CT.  We are down to our final four.  Too bad Paula's play to get Johnny and Camilla in the dome.

This looks like the hardest challenge I've seen in a while.  I like the strategy that CT and Diem come up with, minus Diem's scrunchie. 

The pairings and my analysis follows:
  • CT & Diem: CT efficiently used the knee pads to his advantage.  I think Diem really stepped up.  I did listen to a podcast where Evan was saying she's overrated.  I don't think so. Power couple twice in a row!
  • Johnny & Camila: Camila falling may be some of my favorite scenes of this season.  I am glad they are a little shaken from this challenge.
  • Mark & Robin: The interview at the end when Robyn gets choked up is priceless.  But I think Mark was supportive of her.
  • Ty & Emily: Emily has her height on her side compared to the other girls in the challenge.  I am happy to see them make it to the final.  Glad that CT and Diem took care of them.
Mark Long of course says it's his last challenge.  I do think once you're in your forties it's time for retirement.

Until next week, I obviously can't stand by my prediction of Johnny and Camila, CT and Diem, and Mark and Robin.  So it's CT and Diem, Emily and Ty, and.....we'll see. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Smash: Chemistry

Last week I drank three glasses of wine while watching Smash, it became a spectacularly better show.  This week will probably be the last time I write about it.  Conveniently, in this episode, Ivy develops vocal problems, giving Karen the perfect opportunity to prove she's a better Marilyn.

The biggest storyline was the affair between Julia and Mike.  Mike continues to pursue her even when she dismisses his advances.  Now, I do not condone cheating in any way.  But the writers didn't allow the audience to become invested in the adoption storyline or Julia's husband, Frank (?).  I am not even truly sure of his name.  Needless to say, I did enjoy Julia giving in to temptation.  It is going to have repercussions that I am sure will be predictable.

Tom's assistant, Ellis, is playing out his "All About Eve" storyline to a T, by sucking up to Eileen. This is not going to end well, and it is a trite storyline.

In the end, Julia finishes a song under a deadline.  It seems to suggest she used her affair for inspiration.  While performing Ivy falters, and Derek goes ballistic when rehearsal is stopped. Ivy then flips out on him, and it is exactly what she's been needing to do. It was an explosive monologue that we have been waiting for.

I wonder what kind of ratings the show is getting for its time slot, and if it'll make it to another season. I must commend NBC for giving us a few one hour shows this season.  Some of them haven't worked, but at least NBC is trying. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Walking Dead: Stupid Shane

Season two can be summed up with stupid Lori, stupid Shane, and stupid Carl.  This episode opened with the funeral for Dale, and how Rick was going to honor his memory by letting Randall go.  While they prepare to house for everyone to move in together.  Both Carl and Lori confide in Shane.  Shane uses Carl's confession as ammunition to blackmail Rick into feeling badly.  Lori however expresses compassion for Shane's situation, and she confesses she isn't sure who the father is.

Basically, Lori added fuel to the fire for Shane who is obviously unstable.  I say it again stupid Lori.  All of this pushes Shane into action.  He decides to kill Randall but in the most advantageous way.  He breaks his neck while easing him into thinking that Shane is going to join Randall's group.  Then Shane intentionally runs into a tree to show he struggled with Randall. (This is the third time this season that a series has showed a character running in an object to be purposely and visibly injured a la Revenge and Ringer. Yes, I watch waayyyy more tv than I blog about.) 

A search party is assembled looking for Randall.  They break off into teams.  Darryl and Glenn find the most disturbing evidence.  Randall as a zombie with no bites. (I think it is a virus everyone has and death just activates it.)  Darryl was dubious of Shane right when he told his story, and than Darryl saw the tracks and the blood on the tree.  We then spent the rest of the episode worrying that Shane was going to kill Rick.

Shane and Rick quickly find themselves in a field, where Shane plans to execute Rick.  Shane knows Lori and Carl will get over it. The hubris of Shane is revealed.  Shane's monologue states how much better of a man he is than Rick.  And after all the talking, pride, and confrontation, only one man walks out of the field.

Wow, Rick is the one who stabs Shane, ending his reign as being the best fit for this new world.  Carl sees all of this, including Shane with no bites rising from the dead to become a walker.  Carl shoots Shane, essentially ringing the dinner bell for all the walkers in the area to come feeding. I feel sorry for the cattle, I hope some survive.

Next week is going to be good.  No bites, do you think it's the flu shot that distributed the virus that makes every one turn into a zombie?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The Challege: Wedding Dresses

Johnny is trying to revolutionize men applying sunblock on each other.  He is ambitious, and it still didn't look normal.  Why do people follow him?

The talk between Emily and Ty in the beginning did not bode well for later on in the episode. I am glad to see CT and Diem having a serious talk with lots of apologies.  I loved watching them fall in love, and I would love to see it materialize again.  But I know life doesn't always go that way.

Mad props to the producers for the race to the alter with the wedding dresses, tuxedos, and a cake eating contest.  I really want them to bring back the milk and cookies contest. So genius, torturing exes.

The pairings and my analysis follows:

  • CT & Diem: I am way too happy to see them win and kiss.  Their dinner was cute, and I loved their strategizing. Can't wait to see who they choose!
  • Dunbar & Paula: Paula totally wanted to kill Dunbar, but at least he knew how to do it. Yet, they were undone by sandy nuts.  Paula threw out Johnny and Camila's name so quickly, it was shocking.
  • Johnny & Camila: I am not surprised by Johnny protecting Mark, and it was funny to see him squirm he needs to feel that.
  • Mark & Robin: I know Mark was just trying to protect Johnny and himself, but CT accurately pointed out how he was stuttering.  I love that CT calls people out.
  • Ty & Emily: OMG, Never listen to Camila in terms of what is or is not racist in life.  Even though she grew up in a cult, she shouldn't have done that to anyone let alone, her partner.
On a random note, I love this quote from CT.  And I still want to go to CT's version of Buenos Aires from the last Challenge: "As soon as we get to Buenos Aires, there's gonna be salmon and strippers... clowns in dog suits, dogs in clown suits..."

Until next week, we'll see what happens. 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The River: Poor Monkey

Many reviewers and critics think that The River won't make it to the second season, which is sad.  I think what the River is doing every week is very innovative story telling.  For instance, this episode was different from all the ones before in that it used found footage of Emmet Cole.  There were a few scenes that took place on the Magus, but Emmet Cole carried the episode.  Not many characters or shows could do that. 

I almost knew when they showed the monkey that it was going to come back later in the episode.  I did not think it would be after it was skinned, and I also did not think they would kill a character like that either.  I totally thought it was selfish of Rabbit to run off with all of the survival gear.  I was very worried for the dog while Emmet was starving.  I was very happy that he didn't go through with it.

The ending with the outpost that was now abandoned was very smart.  I think that opens up the series to be out of the river for a few episodes, and it would be a little more tradition story telling which will give the series longevity. 
I was totally not bother by Lena's confession of setting of the emergency beaker, and I am glad she found her mark.  I hope that gets explored further.

My hope for this series is that it makes it to the next season, and that it has a graceful ending where many answers and story lines can be flushed out. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Walking Dead: Shoot First, Think Later

I read Cormac McCarthy's The Road, and I have been traumatized by a post-apocalyptic world ever since.  In a post-apocalyptic world, I would not want to live.  First off, all the things I love tv, movies, books, good food, etc would not exist.  Secondly, it would be uncomfortable and smelly, so I have already told my friends and family it if happens, I will choose the other option out of that world.

At the same point in time while watching the Walking Dead, I have talked to my Dad, the ultimate hunter, about Bowie knives and cross bows for my survival.  If it ever happens, we'll see what I'll do.  My weapon of choice will be the cross bow, reusable ammunition and silent.

This episode opens with Randall being interrogated by Daryl, and he reveals the atrocities of his group of survivors.  I do not know what to make of Randall, if he isn't like that group that rapes and pillages.  I understand the need to kill him.  But Rick should have shot him in the head while attached to the fence, not save his life.  I'll also forgo the major plot hole that Randall knowing Maggie didn't come up at all during his surgery.

I love that Dale has made the effort in confronting Shane and talking to Hershel.  I agree with his ethics and his agreement, but I do not know if it is strong enough to save Randall's life in my mind.  I agree with Dale that civilization is based on the rule of law, magna carta, human rights.  It is a different, changed world (we've been told many times in this season), does logic and rhetoric still exist? If anything, in theory this is the time where rhetoric, philosophy, and logic is required to make sense of the unfamiliar world.

This episode showed that Carl is as stupid as Lori, but at least Carl is a child. Wow, I never expected them to kill off a major character.  Let alone at the hands of Carl.  Daryl taking the final shot was poignant, I am wondering if that means he'll take to heart what Dale said.  I noticed the wings on Daryl's vest earlier in the episode, I thought they'd signify something.  I just didn't think the angel of death.  I am glad Dale doesn't have to live in that world anymore; unfortunately I think that kind of world needs someone like him to insist on protecting civilization.

Am I the only one haunted by the two deputies dead in the last episode that had no bites?  All of these people have been involved in close struggles with walkers, you mean to tell me they have never been scratched?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Challenge: Battle of the Exes-Tainted Love

I didn't expect to want to do another write up, but I thought it was worth it.  I loved the concept of fighting for balls on a slip-n-slide.  I think it was a good way to weed out to the power couples.  Unfortunately, Johnny and Camila still became the power couple.  It was an eventful episode with a drunken fight between CT and Diem along with Ty and Paula hooking up, much to Emily's astonishment.

The pairings and my analysis follows:
  • CT & Diem: Diem is so likable. CT is the charming bad boy, how is their relationship not working? I really felt badly for both of them, there's obviously a lot of hurt between them, even though it was over half a decade ago those feelings cannot be ignored.
  • Dunbar & Paula: They are headed to the dome this doesn't surprise me.  Johnny really took care of Paula this time around.
  • Johnny & Camila: I don't feel bad that people are gunning for them. They are an annoying couple.  Johnny thinks he's Jesus, and Camila is just following along.
  • Mark & Robin: Mark Long is so old, but I love it.  I believe I may have been in grade school when he was originally on Road Rules.  And now I've made him feel old, as well as myself.
  • Rachel & Aneesa: I agree they may have the most balls out of any couple.  Sad to see them go, but they definitely gave some teams a fun for their money.
  • Ty & Emily: I find Emily so boring.  I absolutely have no interest in her, and Ty is so annoying.  He's annoyed me so much on other challenges.  I cannot find him redeeming on this one, maybe the next one.
Paula and Ty are talking about having kids??? I do not think that's a good idea.  So my final three predictions are Johnny and Camila, CT and Diem, and Mark and Robin.