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Oyceter ([personal profile] oyceter) wrote2015-02-20 11:30 pm

Lots of TV

Hi, I am alive! Obviously I have been terrible at being online, which then goes into the whole "I have too much to write up, so I don't write it, so then I feel even more behind" thing. It also doesn't help that my laptop is getting slow so I spend most of my computer time on my phone, which isn't very conducive to commenting or posting.

Anyway, life stuff is going on, mostly not too eventful. And I am watching a lot of TV! Here, have some impressions since the thought of doing coherent write-ups of each show keeps me from writing anything.

Arrow

This started out as my laundry folding show, except then I got hooked. It is probably not the best show ever, especially in terms of writing, but I'm fond of many of the characters and the focus on family. Also, plot like whoa. My main gripes are the romance storylines, since they are mostly terrible, and how you of course learn all things mystical and martial-arts-y in Asia. Or from Asians. (Or sometimes from possibly non-Asian people in Asia? Let's not go there...) My main delights are Oliver's relationships with his family, particularly with his little sister, and assorted Team Arrow teamwork hijinks.

Spoilers through Arrow 3x14

SO GLAD OLIVER FINALLY TOLD THEA!!!! I have not been liking S3 very much, since Moira's death basically meant no Queen family center of gravity in the show, and I've been particularly irritated by how Thea gets sidelined. (Roy bores me.) So the last episode, with Oliver and Thea survival hijinks on Lan Yu, completely delighted me. I love all the annoyed big brother faces Oliver displays when Thea is asking him about secrets and not focusing on things like pulling sharp wooden sticks from his arm or Slade on the loose.

Still not completely on board with the Laurel-as-Black-Canary storyline, especially since Caity Lotz had so much more chemistry with pretty much everyone on the cast. On the plus side, Laurel finally told her dad, OMG. And I'm hoping there will be more of Sin showing up, though I feel like they just threw her in to tip off Lance.

Oh, and then there's the Oliver/Felicity stuff, which really annoys me. Theoretically I am neutral about the relationship and don't actively ship them, but the way it's being written is very frustrating. I was glad when annoying DJ guy ended up being a secret assassin, because if I had to watch Thea getting together with him, I would have thrown something at the screen.

The Flash

So of course since I got hooked on Arrow, I started The Flash, largely because Grant Gustin is ADORABLE. I also love how deliberately non-gritty it is; Barry helps people because he likes helping people. I do wish they weren't making the same mistake Arrow made with Laurel, which is to keep Iris in the dark and thereby make most storylines having to do with her boring. This is especially too bad because the actress is a lot more likable than Katie Cassidy (sorry Katie Cassidy!). On the other hand, the Joe-Barry relationship is BEST.

Spoilers through The Flash 1x14

First, I have to make a note of the sheer hilarious genius of the "Not God. Grodd." line. I think I nearly fell off the couch.

I know nothing about the comics, so the whole Grodd thing feels pretty random to me. Also, is ARGUS going to show up? I can't imagine that the military interest in metahumans is unrelated to ARGUS.

I am less interested in the solving of Barry's mom's murder; as [personal profile] coffeeandink keeps saying, there really need to be more middle-aged women on the show. And I wish there was more for Caitlin and Cisco to do.

The 100

I have really been enjoying this show, and having a female protagonist is such a nice change from Arrow and Flash, much as I like them. I especially love how one of the main themes is Clarke becoming a leader. My other favorite thing is the various shifting alliances and groups and all the politicking. There are some things about the worldbuilding that questionable (Grounder culture, for one), but overall I love how much worldbuilding there is, and how large the world feels. This has really been scratching my SF/F genre itch.

Spoilers through 2x11

I'm still on the fence re: the show's treatment of the Grounders, though I'm hoping Octavia becoming Indra's second will lead to more interesting things. (Also, what's with the giant killer gorillas in CW shows?) And I really hope there's more Raven-Clarke and just more Raven in general, since the past few episodes have felt very Clarke + the guys. That said, yay Monty getting some more stuff to do.

Also, on a minor note, I get that the doctor and the president's son in Mount Weather are EVIL, but you'd think anesthetic would be helpful when you're trying to get at people's bone marrow. I feel having the patient thrashing around and screaming isn't that conducive to successful surgery.

Jane the Virgin

Yes, I am indeed watching all CW all the time.

This show! This is my new favorite and actually has me looking forward to something on Mondays. I love so many things about it, from Jane herself to the Villanueva family to the wtfbbq, telenovela-ness of some of the plot to Rogelio and his hashtags. This gives me all the warm fuzzies.

(Also, so many hearts to the show for having a bilingual household and not making it a big deal.)

Spoilers through Jane the Virgin 1x14

I'm still on the fence about the lesbian characters in the show being a malpracticing doctor who is a recovering alcoholic and the head of a giant crime ring. I think it would help if the story treated Luisa more seriously; I feel like she's been kind of a throwaway joke or plot point more often than not, which sucks, because the show generally is very good at humanizing its characters.

I am SO GLAD they did not kill Petra, though they seriously had me wondering for a while. I was a little hesitant at first, because it seemed like she was going to be one of the big villains, but so far, I think they've done a really good job at having her be villainous and terrible and also showing more of her on her own, without Rafael and Jane. That, and Yael Grobglas' "Why is this happening to me?! WHAT IS MY LIFE WHY?!" expressions are the best.

Agent Carter

I am enjoying this a lot! The Peggy and Jarvis snark is fun, and the bits fleshing out the larger MCUverse are nice as well. Mostly I am ignoring period accuracy but enjoying the clothes. Alas, this is also the whitest show on this post.

Fresh Off the Boat

This is the show I wish I were enjoying more than I actually am. I don't know how much of it is the sitcom humor, how much is the show finding its legs, and how much is stuff just feeling a little off.

One of the main things for me is that Louis and Jessica feel like second gen Chinese Americans, not first gen immigrants. Constance Wu's accent sounds a bit off (I'm not sure if Randall Park is even trying one? Which is probably the better option.), and of course, they don't speak Chinese at home! It's particularly glaring compared to Jane the Virgin's use of Spanish in the show. And when there is Chinese, it sounds a lot like it was written first in English and then translated.

That said, the 90's-ness of it cracks me up (even their light fixtures look it!), and I like it when the show focuses more on individual character quirks rather than commentary on being Chinese. Show! I hope you do well, even if you do end up being not for me.
veejane: Pleiades (Default)

[personal profile] veejane 2015-02-21 01:59 pm (UTC)(link)
Ha, Arrow was the same for me: a show I watched while I shaved my legs (summer) or folded laundry (winter) that just grew on me. (And not just because of the fight scenes.) It's still very silly, but it's so earnestly silly. It has a plan, which feels like a miracle, so one forgives certain awkwardnesses in executing the plan.

(Did you see that one episode in season 1 where Oliver speaks Mandarin? Almost certain it was Mandarin, and so bad he hasn't done it since. Perhaps his Mandarin is so bad because he ended up in Hong Kong?? Anyway, I'm told his Russian is also bad, but that's probably going to come back in season 4.)
meganbmoore: (Default)

[personal profile] meganbmoore 2015-02-21 02:07 pm (UTC)(link)
I keep expecting Indr to die every episode, and then am happy when she doesn't. (Also, I really like Clarke/Lexa, even though I think she's a bad influence on Clarke overall, but am annoyed that we have that instead of Clarke/Anya.)

I don't actually have proper words for my feeeeeelings for Jane the Virgin. Or the Villanueva women. Or Petra. Sadly, must agree on the portrayal of Rose and Luisa, even though I'm fond of both.
hebethen: (Default)

[personal profile] hebethen 2015-02-21 02:26 pm (UTC)(link)
Will There One Day Be A Bilingual Show On US TV With An Asian Language: The Mystery.

Though tbf, Spanish-speaking population in the US is much larger.
hebethen: (Default)

[personal profile] hebethen 2015-02-23 04:02 am (UTC)(link)
I have no idea what the difference between networks is -- what's the situation with CW vs ABC?
coffeeandink: (Default)

[personal profile] coffeeandink 2015-02-21 03:13 pm (UTC)(link)
You are inspiring! Maybe I will do short takes, too.

ARROW

It is AMAZING how much my feelings towards Arrow have improved now that they have revealed all the terrible secrets. And by "terrible," I don't mean that the events themselves were terrible, I mean that keeping them secret was a terrible idea. WHY WOULD YOU EVEN DO THAT, WRITERS! WHY!

I think the Laurel as Canary storyline has finally made the character fall into place. I really like that we get to see her (and Oliver and Thea) struggling to learn how to fight, instead of being instantly good at it. (The lack of this was one of my big gripes with Roy's storyline, but I'm trying to let it go.) At the same time, I miss Sara, and feel the storyline could have been done with minor adjustments if the show had just killed off Quentin instead.

I do actively ship Oliver/Felicity and I am SO ANNOYED the show has handled it so terribly I don't want them to do it anymore.

Thank goodness smug DJ is dead.

Unlike everyone else on the face of the earth, I found Maseo's "That disguise wouldn’t work if you had greasepaint all over your face" HILARIOUS.

THE FLASH
Basically, everything you said.

THE 100
The last two episodes are good but brutal, so don't watch them when down. There is a lot more Clarke interacting with Lexa and Abby, and a little more Clarke interacting with Raven.

The Mt. Weather world-building makes me tear out my hair. Human blood is an infinitely renewable resource, as long as you have living human bodies! Why are you kidnapping and torturing Grounders instead of making trade pacts with them? I get that bone marrow extracts are more painful and invasive and probably put a strain on bodies if repeated, but ... you don't actually need to kill them off! And it all contributes to this kind of political grimdark world-building where we meant to see people making painful but necessary choices, and all I see is the cheating in the setup.

I can argue that Mt. Weather would rather torture the Grounders than trade with them because they see them as savages, inhuman, but I need an acknowledgement of how counterproductive their behavior is.

I wonder if they got a CGI bargain. Two killer gorillas for the price of one.

JANE AND PEGGY
I told Vonnie recently that I was incapable of talking about what I loved best about these shows, because it's all a flood of JANE! GINA RODRIGUEZ! JANE! PEGGY! HAYLEY ATWELL! PEGGY! Even with all the problems (especially Agent Carter), they make me so happy.
coffeeandink: (Default)

[personal profile] coffeeandink 2015-02-23 06:29 pm (UTC)(link)

All the Arrow reviewers and recappers I checked out seemed to think Maseo's comment was just too obnoxious, but I laughed SO HARD. And yes -- the Thea-Oliver relationship is so great! This writing team is so good at all sorts of relationships except the romantic ones (sigh). And I am not an anti-romance person! I like romantic storylines! These are just ... not good romantic storylines.

The 100 - My grimdark complaints are really more about the Ark, I guess, and how we seemed to be meant to see Jaha and Kane's actions, or Abby turning in her husband, as horrible but justifiable. Seriously, every time Abby compares turning in her husband to something Clarke's done, my response is: Uh, no. No, it is not like killing Finn to prevent him from being tortured. No, it is like sacrificing people to maintain a long-term strategy (whether or not that sacrifice is necessary or justifiable). You turned someone in for wanting to tell people something they had a right to know! You killed someone for nothing! This is not comparable!

I was so glad to hear Kane acknowledged that Clarke's actions are driven by the Ark as much as (or more than) the Grounders. I feel like I've been waiting for someone to acknowledge how barbaric the Ark is since I started watching the show. You're right that there's been some implicit acknowledgement of the Mt. Weather people demonizing the Grounders, but it would be good to see more acknowledgement of the Ark people doing so.

I am really afraid the season will end with Clarke ordering a massacre of Mt. Weather. I am also afraid of Lexa dying and passing the leadership on to Clarke and/or Indra dying and passing the leadership on to Octavia, for different reasons.

Agent Carter - A few weeks ago, everyone seemed to be predicting cancellation. Now people are backing off a little, but it still doesn't look great: http://tvseriesfinale.com/tv-show/tuesday-tv-ratings-repeat-after-me-marry-me-person-of-interest-masterchef-junior-supernatural-35650/

I hadn't thought I was that into the Peggy-Jarvis dynamic, but it was SO MUCH my favorite part of the last episode. (That and Peggy wanting a second chance to keep Steve safe. :((( She couldn't save her fridged boyfriend! OH, PEGGY.)

Jane - Why is this a week with no Jane? My life is dark and joyless.

jadelennox: Senora Sabasa Garcia, by Goya (Default)

[personal profile] jadelennox 2015-02-21 04:09 pm (UTC)(link)
I had to stop watching Arrow -- the secret-keeping from Thea which KEPT HURTING HER, the whitewashing of Sin and the Al Ghuls but still filling them with seeeekrit Asian backstories, the fact that Ollie was always wrong and I just wanted Diggle to be in charge, but mostly the fact that my housemate really likes it and it was making him sad how much I was hate-watching. I was glad he liked it! My irritation kept getting him down, so I stopped.

Jane the Virgin, though, is my current favorite show. I love all of them, even Michael (now that the relationship is over), and I can't imagine how they get the Rogelio balance of self-satisfied funny to genuine so perfect. I love Alba and Xo and Petra and Rafael and of course Jane.

I'm not sure how they're going to deal with her needing to have the baby, eventually, and I'm worried they intend to kill off Michael, but I am really enjoying it.
oracne: turtle (Default)

[personal profile] oracne 2015-02-21 04:16 pm (UTC)(link)
It is you!!! I am glad to hear from you. Uneventful is good.
minnaway: (Default)

[personal profile] minnaway 2015-02-21 06:24 pm (UTC)(link)
Jane the Virgin makes me *so so so* happy. Rogelio's hashtags indeed!
vonniek: (Arrow: Team Arrow)

[personal profile] vonniek 2015-02-22 02:32 am (UTC)(link)
Ha! That IS a lot of TV! I thought you might have quit watching Arrow (this season has been trying to say the least) but the last couple of eps in which Oliver and Laurel finally owned up to the secrets they were keeping from their families went a long way to pacify me. And I can't even talk about Oliver/Felicity because they took what was my favourite ship on TV in YEARS and basically ruined it. Woe.

You are me (and mely) in watching ALL the CW shows. Well, I'm still stuck in the second half of season 1 of The 100 but I'll get to the rest of it at some point.

I watched the first 3 eps of Fresh Off the Boat and liked some parts of it. For example, the climax of the pilot with the racial slur and the way the parents dealt with the issue made me quite happy. I think Constanace Wu, who plays Jessica, is fabulous, and I like the younger boys. But Eddie, for all his tender age, is coming across as such a sexist horndog that I have tough time watching him. Plus, it's airing opposite both The Flash and Parks and Recreation, and my dual-tuner TiVo can't handle recording more than 2 shows. I may give it a gander once Parks & Rec is over...
torachan: (Default)

[personal profile] torachan 2015-02-22 08:05 pm (UTC)(link)
I love Fresh Off the Boat, but yeah. I get that this is based on Eddie Huang's actual life, so since his parents were immigrants the parents on the show have to be immigrants, but in that case maybe they could have found actors who actually are...? Randall Park just sounds so Californian except for a few times when he seems to remember he's supposed to have an accent. XD
hebethen: (Default)

[personal profile] hebethen 2015-02-23 04:10 am (UTC)(link)
Iunno, my dad was a (later-in-life) immigrant and his English was fairly close to SAE. Constance Wu's accent is just plain off though. I have grown up in an sinophone network for most of my US life, so I have heard a wide variety of different accents from sinophone immigrants of many educational backgrounds, immigration histories, native sinitic lects, etc. Wu sounds like someone putting on an accent.

I know not everyone has a good ear for accents (and a good, er, vocal tract for mimicking them), but yeah, it would be pretty cool to have someone with a nonstandard accent playing a fully fleshed out character with a nonstandard accent!