House of the Dragon: Driftmark – TV Review

TL;DR – The bookends of this episode are full of intrigue. It just falls out during the middle

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Binge service that viewed this episode.

Dragons fly over Driftmark.

House of the Dragon Review

I have been wondering why I have been having a bit of a disconnect with the show. The production is just as good as Game of Thrones, the narrative has all the elements that usually capture me, and the cast is giving their all in their performances. After some thought, I can tie it down to the show’s narrative structure being like quicksand underneath, with you never being able to grab a foothold. An issue we see in part today, but maybe for the last time.       

So to set the scene, at the end of last week’s The Princess and the Queen, Laena Targaryen (Nanna Blondell) begged her dragon Vhagar to incinerate her after her labour went wrong. At the start of this episode, all of the Targaryens and Velaryons have gathered in Driftmark for Laena’s funeral. However, the growing divides continue to spew forth after Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy) took her family from court to Dragonstone, and the accusations of her children’s parentage still linger. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power: Udûn – TV Review

TL;DR – Could I see some of the plot points of this episode coming? Yes. Did that stop it from ripping my heart out? No, it did not.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Amazon Prime service that viewed this episode.

Adar looks over his armies.

The Rings of Power Review

When watching a show or movie, you never quite know when something will connect with you, like really connect with you. Will a story pierce your heart like a barbed arrow and break through even the most hardened layer of cynicism? After not gelling with last week’s Partings, I wondered if the series was running out of steam with me, but nothing prepared me for today.  

So to set the scene, the orcs had completely surrounded Arondir (Ismael Cruz Córdova), Bronwyn (Nazanin Boniadi), Theo (Tyroe Muhafidin) and the remaining townsfolk in the watchtower of Ostirith. However, as Adar (Joseph Mawle) and the Orcs storm the watchtower, they find it empty. Well, almost empty. But while this delays the Orcs, the townsfolk know that soon the horde will be upon them and sure enough, in the distance, torches glow. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.    

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Star Trek: Lower Decks: Hear All, Trust Nothing – TV Review

TL;DR – A perfect blend of nostalgia and fun.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
The USS Cerritos at Deep Space Nine.

Star Trek: Lower Decks Review

I have made it clear in the past when looking at Lower Deck’s First and Second Seasons that I have enjoyed this someone irreverent take on the Star Trek universe. However, in those two seasons, while they may have dipped their toes in referencing Deep Space Nine, my favourite Star Trek show, today, they dive in phasers blasting.

So to set the scene, the USS Cerritos is en route to a meeting to support the USS Vancouver and their trade negotiations with the Karemma. But when the Vancouver was diverted for an emergency evacuation of a colony, the Cerritos and Captain Carol Freeman (Dawnn Lewis) had to take charge. Dropping out of warp at Deep Space Nine, Freeman asks the crew to buy her some time, and Ransom (Jerry O’Connell) suggests pretending to be in awe of the pylons or something. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.    

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Andor (Star Wars: Andor): Aldhani – TV Review

TL;DR – Perfectly balances tension and story while flying ahead at light speed.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Disney+ service that viewed this series.

Coruscant from space.

Andor Review

When they said there was going to be a prequel series based on the Rogue One film, I wondered where they would take a story where we already know 100% how it will end. However, the opening trilogy of episodes [Kassa, That Would Be Me & Reckoning]  worked together like three acts of a film, and it captivated me. Now I can’t wait to see how they expand on this world.

So to set the scene, there are debacles, and there is what happened on Ferrix, with multiple dead Corpos, chaos on the streets, and a mess so bad it makes its way all the way back to Coruscant and the Imperial Security Bureau, where Major Partagaz (Anton Lesser) was less than pleased. Meanwhile, Andor (Diego Luna) escaped the trap set for him thanks to Luthen Rael (Stellan Skarsgård) and has been given a new opportunity. Get dropped off somewhere and run for all this life, or do something to strike at the heart of the Empire. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.     

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House of the Dragon: The Princess and the Queen – TV Review

TL;DR – A time jump that feels like we are missing important details is not the best thing to do in the middle of the season.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Binge service that viewed this episode.

A dragon flies on top of the water.

House of the Dragon Review

If there was one thing that was forwarded back in the first episode The Heirs of the Dragon, it was that we would be getting a massive time jump at some point in the season. Indeed, we have jumped forward a good 10-ish years from last week’s We Light the Way, and in today’s review, we will look at whether this was a wise narrative choice.  

So to set the scene, in the years since Ser Laenor Velaryon (John Macmillan) and Princess Rhaenys Targaryen (Emma D’Arcy) married in less than ideal circumstances, the realm has seen relative peace. However, as Rhaenys gives birth to her third child and the whole realm but her father, King Viserys I Targaryen (Paddy Considine), can see that they are probably Ser Harwin Strong’s (Ryan Corr). This all gives Queen Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke) more ammunition because as Viserys slowly deteriorates, she hopes that her eldest Aegon Targaryen (Ty Tennant) will take the crown. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.  

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Andor (Star Wars: Andor): Reckoning – TV Review

TL;DR – Perfectly balances tension and story while flying ahead at light speed.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Disney+ service that viewed this series.

Landers descend to Ferrix.

Andor Review

As I come to the end of the opening episodes of Andor, which work both as an introduction and second a small arc in their own right, I found that it has captured my heart and my interest. As we dive into Episode 3, we see a world about to change dramatically as past events crash into the present.

So to set the scene, after having to kill two Corpos in Kassa, Andor spent That Would Be Me trying to get the hell out of dodge because while he was cautious on Morlana One, it was only time before they would trace him down on Ferrix. Meanwhile, back in time on Kenari, a young Cassa (Antonio Viña) braved the crashed ship and started smashing it all up. But he might not be the only one there. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power: Partings – TV Review

TL;DR – As much as the title describes, this is an episode of crossroads, not all of them good.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Amazon Prime service that viewed this episode.

Harfoots migrate.

The Rings of Power Review

I always knew that The Great Wave would be a hard act to follow. Indeed it would be a hard act to get close to that again. However, I was not expecting this week’s episode to give me pause. Not a significant problem per se. More like when you are walking through a forest, and you stop because you have seen something odd in the corner of your eye, pause. Let us now dive into this week’s episode to explore what I mean.

So to set the scene, we open in on the Harfoots as they begin their long migration north, over mountains, through grasslands, and even some marshes where the dead will lie one day. Nori Brandyfoot (Markella Kavenagh) and her family would have been left behind leagues ago because of their father’s (Dylan Smith) foot and being put in the back of the caravan. However, thanks to the help of The Stranger (Daniel Weyman), who fell from the sky, and much to the annoyance of the rest of the caravan, they have kept up. But in this wood, something stirs, and when there is no food, a couple of Harfoots look like a tasty morsel. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.   

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She-Hulk Attorney at Law: Just Jen – TV Review

TL;DR – It’s time for the wedding episode with an unexpected guest.  

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Disney+ service that viewed this film.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no mid-credit scene

Just Jen Attorney at Law

She-Hulk Attorney at Law Review

As we reach this middle part of the season, it has been nice to see She-Hulk revel in these smaller character-driven episodes. Where we get some time to get to know what drives the characters and what their motivations are. The good thing this week is that this episode is all that, but also a little bit more.

So to set the scene, while things are going well for Jen (Tatiana Maslany) at work, an unexpected package has put a pause on things. She has been invited to Lulu’s [her high school best friend but since then, they have drifted apart] wedding. This was a moment to show just how well she was doing. Only Lulu (Patti Harrison) insists that there should be no She-Hulk at the wedding. Back at work, Nikki (Ginger Gonzaga) and Mallory (Renée Elise Goldsberry) have to work for a client that calls himself Mr. Immortal (David Pasquesi) because all his ex-wives and ex-husbands just found out he is alive. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.  

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Andor (Star Wars: Andor): That Would Be Me – TV Review

TL;DR – While building on the suspense, you need to be prepared for a slow burn

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Disney+ service that viewed this series.

A ship comes into land at Ferrix.

Andor Review

While the era of binging of new content might be over, there have been lessons learned and one of them we see here. You want to have a weekly discussion about your show while still having that event day experience. Andor follows the lead of shows like The Boys and lands both those aspects, which is why we can look at Episode 2 today.  

So to set the scene, Andor (Diego Luna) is in a bit of strife as a trip to Morlana One turned bad as two local Corpos tried to rough him up and ended up dead. Knowing that time is limited, and sooner or later, the Corpos will come looking for him on Ferrix. He must work quickly to get off-planet and out of the corporation’s reach, but after all, his planning. He might be undone from the most unlikely of places. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.   

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Heartbreak High (2022): Season 1 – TV Review

TL;DR Heartbreak High crafted an interesting narrative with compelling characters in a setting that does not get the coverage that it should

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Netflix service that viewed this series.

Warning – Contains scenes that may cause distress

The "Map"

Heartbreak High Review

Ever since Sex Education blasted onto the scene, there has been a big push by networks to jump back into the world of teen coming-of-age series, but written with a level of maturity. While there have been a lot of pretenders, I have yet to see anything come close to capturing that level of honesty in a show, well, that is until today. Today we are looking at a show that feels like a breath of fresh air while also being a call back to an Australian classic set at Hartley High School in Sydney, Australia.

So to set the scene, Amerie (Ayesha Madon) and Harper (Asher Yasbincek) are besties who spend their lives inseparable and then fighting hard. But after a music festival, Harper ghosted Amerie and completely changed her appearance. Amerie is trying to find out why all hell breaks loose when they get into a fistfight. Because all last year, Amerie and Harper spent their time in the abandoned stairwell making a map of all the different sexual encounters their grade had engaged in. So on the day that Amerie losses her best friend, the map is discovered, and Amerie goes from being Amerie to becoming ‘Map Bitch’ before being sequestered away in a sexual literacy tutorial with everyone else on the map, including Darren (James Majoos), Quinni (Chloe Hayden), Malakai (Thomas Weatherall), Ca$h (Will McDonald), Dusty (Joshua Heuston), Sasha (Gemma Chua-Tran), Spider (Bryn Chapman-Parish), Missy (Sherry-Lee Watson), and Ant (Brodie Townsend). Now from here, we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.     

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