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It's good I've heard so much good stuff about this from various people I trust, because otherwise I would have never made it past episode three and missed out. It is sad that Jenji Kohan felt that she needed to use white, blonde, upper-middle-class Piper as a kind of Trojan horse to get people to watch something primarily about women not seen on TV as often—queer women, women of color, women of various body types, trans women, old women, etc.—but I don't doubt its true.

(On a side note, I love how we've finally gotten a few shows with POC in leading roles and already there have been concern troll-y "But what about the white men?!" articles.)

Anyway, once the episodes stopped focusing on Piper, I started liking the show much more.

Spoilers got time )

Also, the opening song is the best.
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After watching several MCU movies (particularly CA2) in preparation for Age of Ultron, I wanted more source material and ended up mainlining this despite being completely meh about it when it first aired. I'm still unconvinced that the writers think SHIELD is as sketchy as I do, which is frustrating, because they keep toeing the line of "SHIELD is untrustworthy" and then hastily backpedaling and reassuring us that Coulson is great and trustworthy, and therefore by extension, so is SHIELD.

On the plus side, the second season added some much more interesting new characters and threw a few wrenches in the "happy team yay" vibe from the first few episodes.

Spoilers )
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Er, if I haven't commented on people's comments or posts, it is because I haven't really been online for the past few months =(. I have, however, been watching a ton of TV! I feel like I have finally recovered from grad school brain and been able to focus on things requiring more effort and attention span, like books and TV. It only took five years, ha.

Arrow (spoilers through end of S3)

Spoilers have to become someone. Something. )

The Flash (spoilers through end of S1)

Spoilers became the impossible. )

Lots of TV

Fri, Feb. 20th, 2015 11:30 pm
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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 )

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 )

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 The 100 2x11 )

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 )

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.

Gotham 1x01-1x03

Tue, Oct. 7th, 2014 11:57 pm
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So far, I am still watching because I am a sucker for Batverse, but I haven't really hit it off with any of the episodes yet.

Spoilers )
Tags:
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Hello, show! I missed you in all your cracktastic glory!

Spoilers )
oyceter: (dramas dramas dramas)
Potentially spoilery trigger warnings )

Spoilers )

Now I need more people to watch so I can flail about the gender role reversals re: manpain and how JIN-YI IS BETTER THAN YOU.
oyceter: (dramas dramas dramas)
This is a 2006 drama about the life of Hwang Jin-Yi, a Joseon period gisaeng who was famous for her poetry, art, music, and dancing. We begin with wee!Jin-Yi, who has been raised in a Buddhist monastery, as her mother, a gisaeng herself, wanted Jin-Yi to be able to escape gisaeng life. Unfortunately for the mother, Jin-Yi ends up watching the performance of a gisaeng troupe and immediately deciding that that is what she wants to do.

So far there are:
  • Dance training sequences involving being hung upside down by the foot

  • Steadfast friends who matchmake

  • A demanding taskmistress who feels that suffering pain will only make your art greater!!!, and whatever, what is life being married on a farm when you could be MARRIED TO YOUR ART?!

  • A rival troupe, lead of course by the old rival of Jin-Yi's troupe leader (aforementioned demanding taskmistress), who is determined that she will BEAT HER FINALLY! And if she can't do it, she will get in the way of anyone else who tries to!

  • A rivalry between the most promising girl of the rival troupe and Jin-Yi, in which the rival girl is horrified to hear that Jin-Yi is too sick for a competition because she wants to beat her fair and square as an accurate measure of their talent!!

  • Societally forbidden love with a yangban boy

  • The tragedies of gisaeng life and having to sleep with whatever man has enough to purchase you for the night

  • And I can't even describe how much costume porn


There is so much costume porn I would probably watch this solely for the costume and dance scenes even if the rest of it weren't good, but the rest of it is very good!

Jin-Yi herself is awesome and as stoic as only Ha Ji-Won can be and firmly within the shounen sports manga school of "I must perfect all the dance by any means necessary!" and I'm also enjoying how they're slowly fleshing out some of the other gisaeng as well.

Spoilers )

And on a totally random note, I am amused that a ton of stuff in this drama and in Arang (and possibly most sageuk?) is filmed at the 한국민속촌 and that it's always attributed as such!
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Philip and Elizabeth Jennings look like your normal suburban couple, complete with two kids and a sedan, but they're actually Russian spies. Things get complicated when a counterintelligence FBI agent moves in across the street, especially since Cold War tensions are only getting worse.

So I love spy stuff, but there's a serious dearth of awesome female spies who don't play second fiddle to their male counterparts. I was hoping this series would be an exception, since Keri Russell is billed as the lead, but so far, it doesn't look very promising. I love her character, who is ruthless, incredibly devoted to her mission, and pretty badass, but the narrative keeps undercutting her and giving more weight to her husband and to Agent Beeman. Boo.

It does have less gratuitous female nudity than Game of Thrones (I realize this is a low bar), but we're introduced to Elizabeth when she's seducing someone for spy purposes, and she's repeatedly put in more sexualized situations than her husband is.

On the plus side, there are multiple female characters, and I'm pretty sure the show passes the Bechdel test in each episode.

Spoilers (TW for rape and dubiously consensual situations) )

So. I do like the spy stuff and all the 1980s stuff, but the gender and nationality stuff is too off-putting for me right now. Anyone knows if it gets better in this regard?
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Huh. I am getting a little more emotionally invested in this. This was not the plan! This is supposed to be my fun, cracktastic fling of a show that occasionally shows up with heads in jars!

... anyway, mostly trying to keep expectations low.

Spoilers have creepier imagery than I would like )
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Well, that was not terrible or amazing. So I will keep watching and see if it improves or gets worse, since there have been some things set up that look interesting.

Spoilers were in Tahiti )

In other news, I did not see a single commercial for other ABC shows, Thor 2, or IM3 DVDs during the Hulu stream. Amazing!
oyceter: You are watching anime. Caution! (anime is crack)
*points to icon* So it's not anime, but! There is a head in a jar!!!!

As I am sure everyone knows by now, this is the story of Ichabod Crane, who is transported into our time, along with the Headless Horseman. Lieutenant Abbie Mills has her plans upset when her mentor is killed by the Horseman, and though she isn't too sure about him, she partners up with Ichabod to figure out what's going on.

OMG people. I know everyone has said this, but this show is ridiculous! I am greatly enjoying the sheer over-the-top-ness, and so far, I appreciate that Abbie has been given just as much angst as Ichabod. They are not quite Mulder and Scully, though the show obviously has that in mind as a template, but there's room to grow. Also, I would appreciate it if they are not Mulder and Scully wrt the overwhelming nature of Mulder's angst and alien pregnancies and whatnot.

Spoilers have a head in a jar! )
oyceter: (godchild evil parrot of DOOM)
Spoilers for the series AND all the books )

Please feel free to liberally discuss spoilers in the comments! As you have all probably noticed, I am not particularly attached to this series and am enjoying learning about stuff via fannish osmosis.
oyceter: Joan and Sherlock looking at tablet (elementary)
Sigh. I need to stop reading other reaction posts before I write my own, at least while I'm in my current brain state.

Elementary 1x23-1x24 The Woman/Heroine )
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I really didn't want to go back to my apartment and have to deal with the now-empty rat cage and assorted paraphernalia, so to put it off, CB and I crashed his friend's place and did a 7-episode Game of Thrones marathon.

Spoilers for both the show AND all books )

I'm good with any and all spoilers, so 'ware spoilers in the comments as well!
oyceter: (bleach parakeet of doom!)
I've read the books through A Feast for Crows, which is when I gave up on the series. I have some issues with the books, though the main thing that gets me ranting is the general fannish perception of the books and the series (namely: Most! Brilliant! Thing! Ever!).

I took up the TV series largely because I heard about Lena Headey's casting (insert woeful look re: TSCC here), and I was curious about how the series would treat Cersei. Also, it's one of CB's friend's favorite series.

CW for non-graphic discussion of sexual violence and general violence in the show.

Spoilers for entire show + books 1-4 )

So despite my ranting, will probably keep watching just because of the pretty sets and outfits and the incessant narrative drive.

Assume spoilers for the entire show and all the published books in the comments, along with future spoilers and speculation! I haven't read A Dance with Dragons, but please feel free to spoil away, as I doubt I ever will. In fact, spoiling me for it is a plus, since I'm still a little confused as to what happens from what I read in wiki summaries. Future speculation and/or spoilers also welcome!

Also, I am really not interested in the argument on whether Game of Thrones is feminist or not. FWIW, my take is that it very much is not, even though it has some interesting female characters. I've also read a fair amount of posts on why people think it is, so no need to rehash.

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