Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Ben Reilly: Scarlet Spider #9


Following the events of last month's issue, the Scarlet Spider makes a pair of new friends (well... if you are grading on a curve) and works with Ricochet to track down the other hero's former (and now resurrected) partner Hornet. Knowing there's far more to the story that Ricochet is willing to divulge, and the fact that it's been some time since he's played well with others, Scarlet Spider's team-up doesn't last that long (although the consequences do involve our hero getting in over his head and Richochet racing through a casino without any pants).

Star Wars Rebels - The Occupation


"The Occupation" marks the Ghost's return to Lothal. While the Rebellion is more concerned with an abbreviated communication from Ryder Azadi (Clancy Brown) concerning the the Lothal Imperial Factory, Ezra (Taylor Gray) is far more anxious to help his homeworld fight off its Imperial occupation. But he is unprepared for the destruction he finds; is he too late? Is there anything left fighting for? There are several callbacks to previous episodes including appearances by Ryder, Vizago (Keith Szarabajka), Jai Kell, Valen Rudor, and Puffer Pigs.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Once Upon a Time - Beauty


"Beauty" has two main purposes. First, the flashbacks allow the show to say goodbye to fan-favorite Belle (Emilie de Ravin) while filling in a bit of Rumpelstiltskin's (Robert Carlyle) past prior to his arrival in Hyperions Heights. While awkward, the scenes do allow for a nice farewell to the character. Although we only see glimpses, it's obviously a good life the two of them shared while suggesting that perhaps Rumpelstiltskin may finally be the hero Belle always knew he could be (or at least heroic-ish). The other piece of the episode explains the purpose of Tilly (Rose Reynolds), whose mad ravings help prod the good detective's past providing the kind of kick in the ass the character, and the season, need. With his memories (and powers?) restored, I'm wondering just what Rumpelstiltskin's plans might entail.

Scooby-Doo Team-Up #31


Mystery, Inc. gets called in for a little fun with the Atom. Scooby-Doo Team-Up #31 introduces the Scooby Gang to the Atom and a mystery at the sub-atomic level involving a mysterious ghost apparition that leads our heroes into battle against a wizard to has taken control of a miniature kingdom through use of his "magic."

Justice League Action - Missing the Mark


Mark Hamill goes four-for-four in the new Justice League Action animated short. Hamill not only voices himself, both the villains who abduct him for ransom, but also the hero who steps in to foil the plot (with a little help from the voice actor). With Hamill reprising his roles as both the Joker and the Trickster, the aptly-named "Missing the Mark" actually hits the bullseye. Well played, Mr. Hamill. Well played.

Stranger Things - Chapter Two: Trick or Treat, Freak


"Trick or Treat, Freak" provides much of the memorable snippets from the various trailers promoting the Second Season of Stranger Things, primarily putting out foursome in Ghostbusters costumes for basically the entire episode. Halloween returns to Hawkins, which means trick-or-treating for the gang and newcomer Max (Sadie Sink) - much to the sullen Mike's (Finn Wolfhard) displeasure, and new trouble with Sheriff Hopper (David Harbour) discovering more ruined pumpkin patches and the beginning of a mystery which will be his primary focus him for the next couple of episodes. Getting caught up the case, the sheriff looses time causing some trouble at home with an already stir-crazy Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown). Speaking of Eleven, both episode two and three begin filling in what happened to Eleven following the end of Season Two and explaining how she eventually ended up staying with Hopper in the woods.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Teen Titans #13


While the rest of the Teen Titans go in search for Kid Flash to offer him a spot back on the team, against Damian's wishes, the Boy Wonder goes on his own search for a new member to fill the slot vacated when Kid Flash betrayed the Teen Titans and aligned himself with Deathstroke.

The Blacklist - Ilyas Surkov


While much of the episode is centered around broader season-long storylines, the case of the week involves Reddington (James Spader) sending the FBI after a terrorist who has somehow continued his attacks more than a year after his death. The search for the true identity of the people who have assumed the terrorist's name to cover their own actions leads back to the CIA and a rogue operator (Boris McGiver) carrying out his own mission. While it takes a bit to wade through the lies and deception, eventually Liz (Megan Boone) and her team are able to uncover the truth.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Hack/Slash: Resurrection #1


I'm far from the biggest Hack/Slash fan, but I decided to pick up the first issue of the new series written by Tini Howard, and I'll admit it's a fun read. With her partner dead, Cassie Hack has been reduced to hiding out in a trailer park with her cat living life in seclusion as a cam girl and fighting virtual zombies online for the joy (and donations) of her anonymous fans. When a pair of escaped zombie twins from the Englund Correction Facility show up banging on her trailer, followed soon after by a third zombie trespasser, our heroine is roused out of her slumber and forced to reconsider taking a job as a counselor at the nearby Camp Indigo River.

SEAL Team - Collapse


When anti-American sentiment spikes in the South Sudan following an election the locales feel was rigged, Jason Hayes (David Boreanaz) and his team head out to help evacuate the American embassy. Things are complicated by the current ambassador's (Gabriel Olds) stubborn refusal to give the evacuation order while being more concerned with his legacy than the lives of his people. Sending half of his protection to evacuate aid workers who have no intention of leaving only infuriates the SEALs more making it that much more difficult to reconnect with the rest of the team and get everyone out of the country without casualties.

LEAGUE OF LEGENDS - 7 Years of Cosplay!

The Good Place - Janet and Michael


"Janet and Michael" delves into one of the show's unanswered questions since revealing that the afterlife community Eleanor (Kristen Bell) and her friends are stuck in is actually Hell rather than Heaven. Focused primarily on Michael (Ted Danson), the episode offers flashbacks to him stealing the robot intelligence he needs to create his community and his early interactions with Janet (D'Arcy Carden). The number of reboots of Janet has caused issue concerning Janet's core programming. Michael's reaction to her logical assumption that she needs to be destroyed in order to save The Good Place, offers a first glimpse of humanity for the demon architect. Maybe there's hope for him yet.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Stranger Things - Chapter One: MADMAX


It may take the entire opening episode of the show's Second Season to get around to my favorite Stranger Things character, but in the meantime the show catches us up a bit on what we've missed since the conclusion of the show's First Season. Will (Noah Schnapp) is back, although he feels smothered by the over-protectiveness of his friends and family, and has the lasting effect of occasional visions of the Upside Down which his psychologist (Paul Reiser) assures Joyce (Winona Ryder) and Sheriff Hopper (David Harbour) are only signs of PTSD based on the anniversary of his time in the Upside Down, while the scientists in the basement continue to push back against the rift which is far from dormant. Mike's (Finn Wolfhard) obsession with finding Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) has begun effecting his school work and home life. Nancy (Natalia Dyer) is still with Steve (Joe Keery). All still friends, Mike, Will, Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) and Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin) are interested in the new kid in town (Sadie Sink) while the girls in high school are far more interested in her older brother (Dacre Montgomery).

Goodbye Christopher Robin


Based on the true story of writer A. A. Milne (Domhnall Gleeson) and his creation Winnie-the-Pooh, Goodbye Christopher Robin is more than it initially might seem. Much like Milne himself, returned from war with PTSD and struggling with getting back to work as a writer, the script by Frank Cottrell Boyce and Simon Vaughan struggles before getting the man and his family into the setting which would eventually help create one of the world's most-beloved fictional characters.

Suburbicon

I really wanted to like director George Clooney's Suburbicon. Sadly, the mix of dark comedy, murder, racial injustice, and social commentary flails about for far too much of its 104-minute running time without ever coming together. Clooney produces an only somewhat interesting film with admittedly intriguing pieces and strong performances, but sadly the film never really clicks.

The original script was written by the Coen Brothers years ago and Clooney and Grant Heslov are credited with changes. Suburbicon feels like a movie with four screenwriters as it struggles with a cohesive story and constant tone, often shifting violently one way or the next until the main plot ultimately kicks in.

Our story takes place in the all-white suburb of Suburbicon where the entire town is distraught over the arrival of the town's first black family and far less interested in the horrific violence happening across the street to Gardner Lodge (Matt Damon) and his family when two intruders break in and hold the family hostage. The fallout from that night, and the reveal of what's really going on in Gardner's life, provides most of the tension to follow.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Flash - Luck Be a Lady


While seeing out heroes' luck turn bad, "Luck Be a Lady" answers a couple of lingering questions about the new season, most importantly how this new crop of meta-humans was created (nice one Cisco!), while bringing back the Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh) of Earth-2 and introducing an unusual villain in Hazard (Sugar Lyn Beard). Despite the various troubles the woman's luck field causes (increasing her good luck at the cost of everyone else around her), the episode continues to keep the upbeat nature of the season and bring the fun.

Astro City #48


While still bonkers, the conclusion of G-Dog's story isn't a joyous as Astro City #47. How could it be given the swerve our hero was given at the end of the last issue? Astro City #48 is a beautiful and sweet story about a man and his dog as the days grow shorter and time finally catching up to the canine member of an unlikely pair who became one of the cutest heroes ever to grace the cover of a comic book.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Gifted - eXit strategy


The planning and rescue of Polaris (Emma Dumont) and Reed (Stephen Moyer) dominates "eXit strategy" as the mutants prepare for a suicidal run to rescue their captured friends from Sentinel Services. In order to get the information about the prisoner transfer vital to their plan succeeding, Eclipse (Sean Teale) is forced to open a door to his past he swore would forever remain closed and ask his demented drug kingpin ex-girlfriend (Michelle Veintimilla) for help. While the information pans out, we'll have to wait and see whether or not the cost was too high. Carmen (Veintimilla) continues the show's trend of all humans not portrayed by Amy Acker (and possibly exception of Moyer) as truly awful, irredeemable souls.

Lucifer - What Would Lucifer Do?


Lucifer's (Tom Ellis) wheeling and dealing continues as the Devil also uses the latest murder investigation involving a counselor of a reform program to prove to himself, and everyone else, that no one can ever truly change. Meanwhile, Chloe (Lauren German) continues to struggle with her new boss (Tom Welling) and Amenadiel (D.B. Woodside) struggles while walking a mile in Lucifer's shoes while hoping to discover just what his purpose on Earth is and how it relates to his brother. Murder aside, which is just so-so, the episode is driven by various character insecurities while allowing time for some revelations and truths before our story comes to a close.

Samurai Jack - The Complete Fifth Season

After years of waiting Samurai Jack's (Phil LaMarr) journey comes to a close in the fifth, and final, season of Samurai Jack. Even with Mako (Greg Baldwin steps in to voice Aku), this final installment is a gem. Set years after the last time we saw Jack, the season opens with the weary warrior separated from his magical sword and any hope of ever defeating Aku or returning home. The introduction of Ashi (Tara Strong), one of five deadly Daughters of Aku sent to slay the samurai, will help push Jack back on his path and lead to his final confrontation with the shape-shifting master of darkness.

Highlights include Jack's battle with the Daughters of Aku, Ashi's search for the samurai, a quest for the sword, the return of a hero, Aku's victory over Jack, and the series finale.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Supergirl - Far from the Tree


Fathers and their children is the theme of "Far from the Tree" as J'onn (David Harewood) returns to Mars with Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) and discovers his father (Carl Lumbly) is still alive and a wedding shower provides the opportunity for a reunion between Maggie (Floriana Lima) and her father (Carlos Bernard). While the Martian storyline is a bit awkward in spots, Lumbly's casting proves to be one of the show's better guest-stars (possibly a returning one). After years of psychological torture at the hands of White Martians it takes more than a little convincing to make him believe J'onn is who he claims and that M'gann's (Sharon Leal) resistance fighters need his help to find a powerful weapon that may change the future of Mars.

Star Wars Rebels - In the Name of the Rebellion


The Fourth Season of Star Wars Rebels continues with a pair of episodes that bring back Saw Garrera (Forest Whitaker) and focus on the splintering of the Rebellion. It's too bad that Garrera, the least interesting character from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is really the only character from the film that fits within the Rebels universe. The one-note crazy Rebel continues to take chances and put those around him in danger to prove himself right as a true Rebel.

The Wild Storm #8


There's a ton going on in this issue. The opening storyline involves Jacob Marlowe telling Angie Spica the truth about what he and his friends are doing on Earth... well, mostly the truth. This "easy-reader" explanation works both as a primer for Angie and readers, but of course leaves out some important details. While she's a bit overwhelmed with what she's learned, Angie has found a safe heaven, at least for now. Jacklyn King's team also identifies Grifter, leaving them with several questions about how to best proceed.

Voltron - Reunion


"Reunion" picks up the dormant plot thread of Pidge's (Bex Taylor-Klaus) missing family. Heading out on her own with a slim lead, Pidge will find a path which will eventually lead back her to her brother Matt (Blake Anderson), unaware that her search is helping a bounty hunter with plans of selling them both to the Galra. In terms of plot, there are a couple of nagging issues here. Since when can the Green Lion cloak? And how, if it was cloaked, was the bounty hunter able to track Pidge back to her brother? That said, "Reunion" scores high on the emotional scale while letting Pidge impress her brother for a change and giving us some extra flashbacks to Pidge's life long before she became a paladin of Voltron.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Justice League Action - Harley Goes Ape!


"Harley Goes Ape!" works in a bit of Harley Quinn's (Tara Strong) backstory while giving us one of the more obscure villains in the DCU. Grodd's (David Sobolov) latest attack involves him taking control of Titano (a chimpanzee space pilot transformed into a giant monkey capable of shooting Kryptonite beams of his eyes... no, seriously!). While Superman (Jason J. Lewis) is relatively helpless to stop the beast it falls on Stargirl (Natalie Lander) with the unlikely assistance of Harley Quinn to save the day. Harley, who knew the chimp back before his transformation, proves to be the key into giving the heroes enough time to break Grodd's hold. And Stargirl's quick thinking helps save Titano from some pissed-off cops looking to take the creature down for all the damage Titano unknowingly caused while under Grodd's control.

Highlander 5-Film Collection

Don't lose your head. For die-hard Higlander fans comes the Highlander 5-Film Collection. Including the original Highlander and its sequels, the collection follows the adventures of immortal Connor MacLeod (Christopher Lambert) and his sword fights with other immortals battling to become the last of their kind. The first film, which sets up the universe and character to follow, is the best of the collection and is really what you are paying for (although I do enjoy Endgame as well).

While goofy as hell, and at times entertaining despite its best efforts, Highlander II is problematic for the changes (afterwards forgotten) it made to the franchise. The Final Dimension brings back an immortal (Mario Van Peebles) from Connor's past, and Highlander: Endgame and Highlander: The Source incorporate TV's Highlander Duncan MacLeod (Adrian Paul) into the movie franchise (the latter is nearly unwatchable).

Arrow - Tribute


Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) faces attacks on two sides in "Tribute." First, the release of a photograph of him as Green Arrow creates a media frenzy around the Mayor of Star City, creates trouble for his son at school, and launches a FBI investigation into his life. And second, the reappearance of Anatoly Knyazev (David Nykl) is problematic with the Bratva soldier and his men kidnap visiting dignitaries and hold them for ransom. The episode B-story also finally delves into just what's wrong with Diggle (David Ramsey) since his return from Lian Yu.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

The Good Place - The Trolley Problem


Possibly better than any other show currently on television, The Good Place knows how to write itself out of potential issues and provide twists to what is a very simple premise with (presumably) limited story options. The end of the First Season dropped the bomb shell of where Eleanor (Kristen Bell) and her friends are truly living while Season Two has kept viewers on their toes with the demons trying (and failing) to hoodwink the damned foursome again. Michael's (Ted Danson) decision to team-up with the group was another such twist, the fallout of which provides some of the best moments of the season so far.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Star Wars Card Trader - Awesome Custom Pack 15


Also check out Pack 1, Pack 2, Pack 3, Pack 4, Pack 5, Pack 6, Pack 7, Pack 8, Pack 9, Pack 10, Pack 11, Pack 12, Pack 13, and Pack 14.

Behind-the-Scenes of Alexis Ren's Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Shoot

Supergirl #14


I'm not sure why every version of Supergirl seems to go through a storyline where her powers go on the fritz at some point, but that's the case in Supergirl #14 where Kara travels to China to seek help from Super-Man and I-Ching.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

SEAL Team - Ghosts of Christmas Future


Jason Hayes (David Boreanaz) and his team head to Estonia to grab a Serbian war criminal turned weapon supplier who Mandy's (Jessica Paré) mentor (Brian Howe) has been after most of his career. The already complicated snatch-and-grab is made even harder when one of the target's bodyguards turns out to know Jason, his team, and their methods. Things don't get any easier for Mandy when she discovers her old friend is so invested in the operation he has played fast and loose with the facts to get her team to put themselves in a dangerous position. The CIA intrigue is a nice twist while once again the action in the field, the planning, and necessary improvisation, all play to the show's strengths.

Legends of Tomorrow - Freakshow


Trying to prove their worth, and using a list of time anachronisms stolen from Rip Hunter's (Arthur Darvill) new organization, the Legends head back to a circus in 1870 where they turn a low-level disturbance into something far more dangerous before eventually saving time once more. Given that the threat involves a sabertooth tiger out of its natural element, the group also decides to call on the help of Vixen (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) whose reasons for returning to the past are finally explained. Most of the humor is at the expense of our main characters, as they make a situation ten times worse before making things better, but that seems to be the theme of the show's Third Season which I'm happy enough to see continue (and I still think Booster Gold would fit in perfectly as a Legend).

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Flash - Mixed Signals


If Iris (Candice Patton) ruins Barry's (Grant Gustin) new-found lighter outlook on life I may not forgive the character, or the show's writers. While relationship issues seep their way into both the main story involving Barry and Iris and the B-story involving Cisco (Carlos Valdes) and Gypsy (Jessica Camacho), the threat of the week comes in the form of the meta-human Ramsey Deacon (Dominic Burgess), loosely based of the DC Comics' character Kilg%re. With a power to manipulate technology, the villain begins targeting his former associates who cut him out of the sale of lucrative technology he helped invent. Attempting murder by elevator, car, and insulin pump, the bad guy turns whatever tech he can find into a weapon - including Cisco's new upgrades to Barry's suit.

The Gifted - eXodus


"eXodus" answers a couple of questions for viewers. First, we learn how far Reed (Stephen Moyer) is willing to go in order to protect his family and what lines he won't cross. And second, we learn the identity of the mutant underground's morally ambiguous character (pretty much every version of the X-Men has at least one). While the overall season plot isn't advanced much further, the show continues to reinforce basic ideas (humans all bad, government all bad, every mutant is reasonably good... at least so far) as Kate's (Amy Acker) attempts to get her family's help only lead to more trouble for everyone involved. We also see the increased aggression in Andy (Percy Hynes White) and it seems as if the show's writers have already decided on the character prancing down the road to super-villainy at a good pace.

Red Hood and the Outlaws #15


The Outlaws' announcement to Gotham's heroes that they are no longer needed doesn't exactly sit well with Batwoman and the Detective Comics team. Despite the fact that the Red Hood's team has been able to drop Gotham's crime rate to almost nothing, the bravado of their announcement forces an inevitable conflict between the two groups starting with Clayface's kidnapping of Bizarro and ending with a full-on fight between the two groups.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Lucifer - Mr. and Mrs. Mazikeen Smith


Feeling a bit restless, and taking advice from Lucifer (Tom Ellis), Mazikeen (Lesley-Ann Brandt) heads to Canada after the most dangerous bounty she can find. After terrorizing Canada for a few days, Maze catches up with Ben Rivers (Chris McKenna) only to discover he's more illusive, albeit less murderous, than she's been led to believe which only makes the chase more spirited... but not in the way Lucifer had intended.

Supergirl - Triggers


"Triggers" offers an emotional episode by introducing a villain with an unique ability to attack Kara (Melissa Benoist) where she's as vulnerable as any human walking the streets. National City's new bank robber turns out to be a meta-human named Psi (Yael Grobglas) who has the ability to force those around her to live their greatest fears. Her first two interactions with Psi don't go well for the Girl of Steel whose visions of the end of Krypton and being trapped within her lifepod brings her to her knees. Only after understanding how her earlier fears relate to the loss of Mon-El who may be dead, or at best doomed to the same claustrophobic loneliness she felt as a teenager, can Kara fight through her fears and make a stand.

THIS IS NYCC NEW YORK COMIC CON 2017!

Star Wars Rebels - Heroes of Mandalore


Star Wars Rebels opens its fourth and final season with Sabine Wren (Tiya Sircar) leading Ezra (Taylor Gray), Kanan (Freddie Prinze Jr.), Chopper, and several Mandalorians first in a rescue mission to save her father and then in destroying the weapon she designed as an Imperial cadet. Sabine gets much of the internal turmoil and glory here, enough that the final scene of her stepping aside to let another lead Mandalore feels a bit... off. Sure, we know Sabine has no real interest in the job, but given her actions in these two episodes I doubt the other Mandalorians would seem so willing to allow her to step aside in favor on another, even for someone like Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff) who has the legacy to rule. While this frees the character up for more stories with the her friends, it also feels like a forced and unnatural detour in Sabine's arc.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #30


I may have enjoyed Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #30 a bit more if the entire story hadn't been a misdirect. That said, fans of Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps should still have fun with the Green Lantern's return to Earth to investigate Superman's recent encounter with Parallax and news that Sinestro is alive in the anti-matter dimension on Qward.

Voltron - Code of Honor


With Keith (Steven Yeun) continuing to go on dangerous missions with the Blade of Marmora, and pull back from his responsibilities as a paladin of Voltron, the team is left without a pilot for the Black Lion. When what begins as a show of power to rally planets to their cause ends in a Galra attack that puts the other paladins in harms way, Shiro (Josh Keaton) is forced to make a tough choice and once again take over as the paladin of the Black Lion and the leader of Voltron.

Once Upon a Time - A Pirate's Life


Emma (Jennifer Morrison) returns for flashbacks of Henry's (Andrew J. West) adventures in an episode that gives us two different Captain Hooks (Colin O'Donoghue) and reveals the one trapped in Hyperion Heights may not be the one viewers have gotten to know over the show's previous seasons. Meanwhile, back in the real world, Rogers (O'Donoghue) is tested by his partner as Henry's appearances make Victoria Belfry (Gabrielle Anwar) increasingly uncomfortable.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Justice League Action - E. Nigma, Consulting Detective


After the Joker (Mark Hamill) traps Batman and leaves a scavenger hunt of riddles for Green Arrow (Chris Diamantopoulos) and Wonder Woman (Rachel Kimsey) to follow, the pair of heroes reluctantly accept the help of the recently reformed Riddler (Brent Spiner) who is more than a little miffed at another Bat-villain stealing his schtick. "E. Nigma, Consulting Detective" is a fun, if goofy, episode of the Riddler leading the two heroes through deciphering a list of ridiculous clues eventually leading back to the Joker's hideout.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Arrow - Fallout


Despite choosing to end the flashbacks into Oliver Queen's (Stephen Amell) lost years before his rescue and return home, the new season of Arrow can't quite resist an entire new set of flashbacks to fill out the season premiere. Opening five months after the death of Prometheus and the explosions on Lian Yu, "Fallout" gradually fills in some of the gaps of what happened to various characters. Despite explosions on the entire island, the only casualty turned out to be William's mother (Anna Hopkins) who appears in an awfully clunky death scene just long enough for Oliver to promise to take care of William (Jack Moore). Thea (Willa Holland) may be temporarily stuck in a coma, likely until sweeps, the rest of the team comes back in one piece (more or less).

Cosplay Remix: MARIO BROS and Friends

Thursday, October 12, 2017

SEAL Team - Boarding Party


The SEAL Team is called into action when a research tanker is hijacked in the South Chinese Seas. By the time the team is able to mobilize the pirates have taken the ship to the Philippines where they plan to sell the hostages. Despite getting into a firefight with the pirates' unexpected back-up, the team is able to retrieve the hostages and make it out without any casualties. As we've seen in previous episodes, the highlights of the episode all come from the mission (both planning and execution) while the B-stories continue to suffer in comparison. The return from the mission does offer a nice moment between Davis (Toni Trucks) and Ellis (Jessica Paré) and explain why the CIA agent purposefully remains detached from the unit as much as she can given the situations she's forced to place them in, sometimes with limited intelligence. Sadly we get less of Paré this episode and more of the soap-opera home-front misadventures.

Jessica Jones #13


Jessica Jones #13 is all prologue for one hell of a creepy-ass final panel. Don't get me wrong, it's damn good prologue. Brian Michael Bendis' Alias run introduced the connection between Jessica Jones and the Purple Man. The run made such a lasting impression its run became the source of Netflix's Jessica Jones television series. The only surprise is it took the new comic series this long to bring him back.

Legends of Tomorrow - Aruba-Con


After breaking all of time, the Legends find themselves replaced from their roles as time police by Rip Hunter's (Arthur Darvill) new Time Bureau. Struggling to fit back into everyday lives, the group is given the chance to jump back into action when Mick (Dominic Purcell) discovers Julius Caesar (Simon Merrells) on a beach in Aruba. While the Legends first attempt to right history, after stealing the Waverider from the Time Bureau, goes horribly wrong, eventually the group does prove their value and grudgingly earn their roles back in helping clean up the mess they caused.

Coming Soon - Star Wars: The Last Jedi


Despite all the warnings of possible spoilers, I didn't see anything all that surprising in the first full trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The film, opening in theaters on December 15th, stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Billie Lourd, Domhnall Gleeson, and Gwendoline Christie.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The Flash - The Flash Reborn


After showcasing the heroes of Central City fighting without their friend, "The Flash Reborn" mainly deals with Cisco's (Carlos Valdes) plan to pull Barry (Grant Gustin) out of the Speed Force and get the show back to something resembling the status quo by the end of the season premiere. It takes most of the episode, but Barry is back in action just in time to save Iris (Candice Patton) from a Samuriod... even if his return isn't without it's issues. While I appreciate the idea that Iris putting herself in danger is the shock necessary to push Barry out of his Speed Force fugue state, the episode races through the important moment later in the running time than necessary in order to get Barry back among his friends just in time for the credits to roll.

Usagi Yojimbo #162


Opening with Kitsune in jail for a murder she did not commit, a situation that doesn't agree with the thief, the concluding half of "The Body in the Library" offers Miyamoto Usagi and Inspector Ishida's investigation into the the second of two recent murders and the theft of precious foreign medicine.

Scorpion - Grow a Deer, A Female Deer


After heading to Africa to help a nonprofit deal with a rise of poachers, Scorpion finds itself racing to protect an injured deer and a her newborn faun. The episode has plenty of action and humor, some of which works well and some... not so much. Toby (Eddie Kaye Thomas) in full dad joke mode is actually charming, but running gag of Walter's (Elyes Gabel)'s Cabe impression goes sour quickly as the team leader takes on the personality of the missing Cabe (Robert Patrick) who can't leave the country due to his impending legal troubles.

The Gifted - rX


The second episode of The Gifted is mainly about Kate (Amy Acker) and her children finding a home with the mutant underground while helping the injured Blink (Jamie Chung). On the flip side, after being pressured for nearly the entire episode, the captured Reed (Stephen Moyer) makes a compromise that likely he and his whole family may regret by agreeing to help the government take down the mutants in return for his family's safety. When push comes to shove, whose trust will he betray? The other major storyline of the episode gives us Polaris' (Emma Dumont) early days in prison. Aside from the logistical issues of putting mutant prisoners in with humans rather than housing them in more secure facility, the mutant-dampening collars feel a bit too goofy (even for a show based on comic book characters) and it's all-too-obvious that they are a major weakness in the only thing keeping the character from her friends.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Lucifer - The One with the Baby Carrot


While Lucifer (Tom Ellis) and Chloe (Lauren German) investigate the murder of a comedian whose jokes were stolen by one of his colleagues, the show continues to lay the groundwork of the mysterious Sinnerman. Despite the lack of evidence that the mystery man even exists, Lieutenant Marcus Pierce (Tom Welling) confides in Lucifer that he's had run-ins with the Sinnerman before and warns him off continuing down a dangerous path. While I still think there's a 50/50 chance Pierce will be revealed to be the devil doppelganger at some point this season, making him and ally of Lucifer is an interesting path to go down. Either way, I'm curious to see where the pair's secret investigation takes them.