Thursday, April 30, 2020

A Special Performance of Rainbow Connection from Kermit the Frog

Star Trek: Discovery - Context Is for Kings

Set six-months after the Battle of the Binary Stars, "Context Is for Kings" offers a secondary pilot for the show as the court-martialed Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) finds herself aboard the U.S.S. Discovery when her prison shuttle encounters trouble during transport. Rightly skeptical of the situation that puts her back on a Starship, nevertheless Burnham goes to work helping the ships crew on a top-secret mission. Pulling in a couple of recognizable faces from the show's first episode, the rest of the core cast is introduced here including Captain Gabriel Lorca (Jason Isaacs), Mary Wiseman as Burnhams bunkmate, and Anthony Rapp as astromycologist Paul Stamets.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

The Flash - Liberation

Following Barry's (Grant Gustin) realization that there is something wrong with his wife, The Flash turns its attention on the mirror Iris (Candice Patton) and the machinations of Eva McCulloch (Efrat Dor). Despite putting off some serious conspiracy-theorist vibes, Barry is able to enlists others to his cause. However, the mirror version of his wife has one last trick up her sleeve turning the tables on the Flash giving the mirror minions the chance to obtain the final piece of the puzzle to allow the Mirror Master to return to the real world. Events come to a head with the limited-powered Flash getting his butt kicked by the Mirror Master and a bit of a schmaltzy epilogue featuring Iris and Barry separated from each other for the foreseeable future.

Star Trek: Picard - Remembrance

It's hard not to think of Logan while watching the first episode of Star Trek: Picard. Set more than a decade after Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) left Starfleet, Picard is awoken from his slumber by a dream, an interview, and a visitor. Brent Spiner guest-stars in a couple of dream sequences as Picard does a fairly good job using make-up to hide the actor's age since the last time Data was seen on-camera. The shiny optimistic view of Star Trek: The Next Generation has been toned-down quite a bit. Playing more than a little to current events, the once wide-reaching Starfleet has turned inward. The interview, which takes place on a historic event of some consequences for our Captain, helps flesh out a bit of Picard's past and the reasons for his break with Starfleet over its policies towards ending assistance to Romulan refugees after the destruction of their homeworld and the termination of Starfleet's synthetic life program following an android uprising on Mars.

Monday, April 27, 2020

LEGO Harry Potter Moments (Part 1)

I'm now halfway through a current rewatch of the Harry Potter movies, one night at a time. These cause me to create some LEGO shots for each of the first four films.

Star Trek: Discovery - The Vulcan Hello

Set a decade before the original Star Trek, the opening episode of Star Trek: Discovery introduces us to First Officer Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) and Captain Philippa Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) of the Starship Shenzhou. After a short pre-credit sequence focused on the pair bringing water to a planet facing drought, ending in a fun (if goofy) fan-service moment, the episode moves towards the primary storyline involving the reawakening of hostilities between the Federation and the Klingon Empire. Coming across an unknown ship near a destroyed Federation interstellar relay will lead to high tensions aboard the Shenzhou, ending in near mutiny as the Vulcan-trained Burnham's plan of attack flies in the face of the orders from both her Captain and the Federation.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Legends of Tomorrow - Zari, Not Zari

The latest episode of Legends of Tomorrow delivers both two versions of one Legend and the death of another. Constantine (Matt Ryan), Sara (Caity Lotz), and Charlie (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) search for another piece of the Loom (which apparently is made out of rings?), as Charlie's sister Atropos (Joanna Vanderham) starts attacking Charlie through time first by killing her band in the 70s and then tracking her to the present where her wrath ends will end with one Legend dead and the god apparently lost in the vortex of time itself. Along with just what actually happened to Atropos, the episode does raise some questions about Sara (who somehow survives the goddess' power) and the finality of Atropos' actions. Can time be rewritten, again?

The Flash - So Long and Goodnight

While the main storyline of "So Long and Goodnight" centers around Joe's (Jesse L. Martin) attempts to take down Joseph Carver (Eric Nenninger), and the continuing depletion of Barry (Grant Gustin) speed, the B-story of Ralph (Hartley Sawyer) and Cisco (Carlos Valdes) hunting down Sue (Natalie Dreyfuss) steals the episode. Sue may get the drop on the guys once more, but our elongated hero has a couple of tricks up his sleeve as the combination of Cisco and Ralph getting one-upped provides some lighter moment to an episode full of consequences for our characters. The storyline also lets us in on Ralph's deduction of the less-nefarious reason behind all of Sue's recent breaking-and-entering while continuing to build on the chemistry between the two characters.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Prodigal Son - The Professionals

Malcolm (Tom Payne) leads the team in investigating the death of Eve Blanchard (Molly Griggs) whose murder was framed to look like a suicide. The ensuing search for a hired killer leads to a scene FOX has been teasing for weeks with Malcolm appearing to stab a target in public in an attempt to flush out the would-be killer (Dagmara Dominczyk). While not the killer they are after, some sound advice and breadcrumbs will eventually lead Malcolm and the NYPD to the true killer just in time to save his father from a similar fate (and also offer the good doctor a bit more exercise than he's normally used to).

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Why calling him SHAZAM is the Dumbest Idea Ever

Justice League Action shows why we should always refer to the Big Red Cheese as Captain Marvel.

Tuesday with Zinda

Monday, April 20, 2020

NCIS: Los Angeles - Murder of Crows

Anna Akana guest-stars as a former NCIS tech whose life, along with that of a missing NCIS agent from Key West, is in danger. While evidence initially seems to point to the missing agent as the mole who may have ruined NCIS' case against the same arms dealer after Rhea Moretti (Akana), the truth is he has been working hard to save the life of a source within the criminal organization. Akana is fun here, working a bit of herself into the character with stand-up along with references to therapy and, of course, cats. Surviving the ordeal, and proving her worth, you have to wonder if we've seen the last of the abrasive yet adorable Moretti (I'm hoping not). The episode also features the expected ongoing team drama with Callen (Chris O'Donnell) fretting over buying a house and Kensi (Daniela Ruah) working to convince Fatima (Medalion Rahimi) to explore life outside of work.

Luke Skywalker - The Journey Begins (Star Wars Galaxy of Adventures)

This is PAX East 2020 Best Cosplay Music Video

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Selah and The Spades

Written and directed by Tayarisha Poe, Selah and The Spades offers a look at the cliques inside the private high school of Haldwell where its title character (played by Lovie Simone) reigns supreme by running the school's drug-dealing faction known as the Spades. It's highs are stronger than its lows, but Poe's film has enough of each to undercut the storytelling at times leading to an uneven tale of the secret life of spoiled high school students after hours.

The film finds it strength in Simone as the out-going senior troubled by insecurities, rivals, and an overbearing mother (Gina Torres) who has her daughter's life planned out, and Celeste O'Connor as the younger transfer student who Selah takes under her wing. While the film teases something more between them, in the end it's hard to tell just what the two mean to each other (or if they even know). Also of note are Poe's vision and the cinematography of Jomo Fray, both of which help frame the story as something apart from the majority of high school films. Even if the ending feels rushed and somewhat unsatisfying, enough of Selah and The Spades works to make it memorable in a year where that could be scarce.

Simon's Cat - Ambush

Batman: The Adventures Continue #1

Set sometime during the later seasons of Batman: The Animated Series (after the show's redesign), Batman: The Adventures Continue #1 continues the adventures of Gotham's Caped Crusader. Written by the show's producers Alan Burnett and Paul Dini, and drawn by Ty Templeton, the comic captures the look and feel of the show (even if it isn't the more classic Batman design from the show's earlier seasons, which I prefer).

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Super Heroes Card Trader - Teen Titans Pack

For more super-heroes check out Super-Hero 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, Team-Up Pack 1, Wonder Woman Pack 1, Green Lantern Pack 1, Black Cat Pack 1, Pack 2, Lara Croft Pack 1, Pack 2, Pack 3, Spidey Pack 1, Pack 2, Pack 3, Pack 4, Deadpool Pack 1, Harley Quinn Pack 1, Pack 2, Pack 3, Pack 4, Pack 5, Harley Quinn & the Birds of Prey Pack 1, SHAZAM! Pack 1, Birds of Prey Pack 1, Pack 2, Memorial Day Pack 1, X-Men Pack 1, and the X-Mas Mega Pack 1 and Mega Pack 2.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Alyson Tabbitha's Arwen Cosplay Tutorial (Lord of the Rings)

Once and Future #7

Following his victory over zombie King Arthur, Duncan's life didn't exactly go back to normal. There are still mystical and unworldly threats in the world the once unsuspecting young man is uniquely qualified to deal with, and, with the help of Meg and his Gran, Duncan's destiny continues to unfold.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Every LEGO Doctor Who Minifigure Ever Made!!!

Postmodern Jukebox - Pinky And The Brain Theme

Enjoy this moment of awesome courtesy of PostmodernJukebo featuring Emily Goglia, Rob Paulsen, and Maurice LaMarche.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Far Sector #5

On the furthest edge of the known universe, rookie Green Lantern Sojourner Mullein continues to search for answers into the City Enduring's first crime in 500 years. With the help of an Artificial Intelligence, the Green Lantern searches for answers and patterns to the mystery, although answers continue to allude her.

After teasing readers for several issues about Sojourner's past and her relationship to the Corps, Far Sector #5 finally starts to fill in some of the gaps to her past, offering glimpses into the history of injustice she has fought her entire life, and the attempts of service which would eventually lead to a once in a lifetime offer (interestingly, it appears the ring did not choice its wearer in this case).

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Star Wars - Attack of the Clones

When ranking the nine movies of the "Skywalker Saga" there is never a question of which film comes in last. 2002's follow up to Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace jumps forward a decade when a Separatist movement threatens the stability of the Republic. Standing against allowing the rising tensions to turn to war, now Senator Amidala (Natalie Portman) returns to Coruscant. An attack on the Senator's life will bring her back into contact with Jedi Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) and his padawan Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), and bring Anakin one step closer to his dark destiny.

Star Wars - The Phantom Menace

Now that the "Skywalker Saga" is complete, it seems like a reasonable time to go back and look through the various Star Wars films. Unlike some, I come not to condemn The Phantom Menace. Despite its flaws, the film has genuinely great moments, strong new characters, and vivid new worlds all while doing more world building than any Star Wars property other than the original Star Wars. Does it measure up to Lucas' original? No, certainly not. But it's far from the weakest Star Wars film.