TL;DR – A great welcome back and set up for the rest of the season
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Review – Sometimes there is a joy in just getting to sit down with old friends and chat and laugh and enjoy your time together. Well occasionally you can have TV shows that can feel just the same way and for me, one of those shows is Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Over the years there have been so many close calls, that any new episode is a moment of joy and today we get to look at the first episode of a seventh season, two more than I thought we would get.
So, to set the scene, in Sicko/Suicide Squad at the end of last season, the Nine-nine squad was successful in thwarting the evil police commissioner, but it came at a price. Captain Holt (Andre Braugher) had to step down as captain after letting slip that he never did his one-year mandatory time as a uniform beat-cop. All of a sudden, the power roles have been reversed and it is Jake (Andy Samberg) giving Holt the orders, and well that goes about as well as you expect it too. Now we will be looking at the episode as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – This series continues to be the benchmark for modern Science Fiction, the benchmark for novel adaptation, and the benchmark for great TV.
Score – 5 out of 5 stars
Last year I wrote an article about how we are in a new Golden Age of Science Fiction and at the heart of that theses was the joy that was The Expanse. At the time Season Three had come out, and we still were not sure if that would be the end of the TV show. It would have been sad if the show’s story had ended there, but at least we still had the books, which was a little consolation. However, I was overjoyed to hear that it got a last-minute pick-up for Season Four on Amazon, ecstatic when I discovered that it was already greenlit for Season Five, and over the moon now that I have watched Season Four and have discovered the joy that it is.
So to set the scene, at the end of last season, disaster had been forestalled and new opportunities have arrived when thousands of gates to thousands of new solar systems opened up. Fearing the new disaster that could come for an out of control gold rush, or worse a new proto-molecule infection, the powers at be, the new alliance of Earth, Mars, and the OPA work together to set up a blockade at the Solar System side of the network. But before they could get it set up a bunch of Belter refugees took the gamble and broke through the blockade. Months later and somehow the Belter have survived, which is causing Chrisjen Avasarala (Shohreh Aghdashloo) all levels of grief because the Royal Charter Energy (RCE) Company has legal claim to the planet and has sent their ship the Edward Israel to what they call New Terra, but what the Belters call Ilus. So who better to go and meditate, well that would be the crew of the Rocinante James Holden (Steven Strait), Alex Kamal (Cas Anvar), Naomi Nagata (Dominique Tipper), and Amos Burton (Wes Chatham). Now from here, we will be looking at the season as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – Here we get to see the drive of the season and some moments that really show who this current Federation is
Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars
After the excellence of the first episode, the next question is can you keep that momentum moving which is a whole new problem all in itself. But if the first episode Remembrance framed this new world, Maps and Legends gave it context as we deal with its fallout.
So to set the scene, we go back in time to the fateful day on Mars when the synthetics attacked. We had seen part of this in the Short Trek Children of Mars, but now we get to see what happened on the ground as the synthetic F8 (Alex Diehl) is hacked and turns on his crew and assists in the destruction of the planet. Meanwhile, Picard (Patrick Stewart) begins his search in earnest to find Dahj’s (Isa Briones) twin sister Soji (Isa Briones) who is currently serving on a derelict Borg cube called ‘The Artefact’. Here he tries to go through the right channels only to get that thrown back in his face. Now we will be looking at the episode as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – This is a wonderful start and the best thing I can say is that I want more as soon as possible
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Oh boy, if there is one thing I have been excited about this year it has been getting a chance to get my eyeballs on Star Trek: Picard. Well now it is here and I couldn’t be happier. For so long there has been this almost fear that you can’t go past Nemesis in the timeline, well now we have and it’s about time.
So to set the scene, it have been 20 years since the death of Data (Brent Spiner) during the events of Star Trek: Nemesis and the pain still wears heavy on the heart of Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) who has now retired from Starfleet to run his family’s vineyard in France. He is burdened by his past, his losses and failures like with Romulus. Meanwhile in Boston, Dahj Asha (Isa Briones) is enjoying an evening when masked figures beamed into her apartment killing her boyfriend and interrogating her. But just when all is lost, something inside her is triggered and a killer is let lose. Now we will be looking at the episode as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – This was the perfect way to end such a special show
Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars
How do you end a show, does it go out in a whimper, in a mess, in a fleeting flame, or do you stand there as a wave of emotion pours over you. I have seen a lot of finales that have stumbled at the last hurdle, some so bad that they cast the rest of the series into question. However, today I get to take a look at one that gets it right as it says goodbye.
So to set the scene, throughout this season the philosophy gang Michael (Ted Danson), Eleanor (Kristen Bell), Chidi (William Jackson Harper), Tahani (Jameela Jamil), Jason (Manny Jacinto), and Janet (D’Arcy Carden) have been fighting to save the afterlife. First from a system that just put everyone in The Bad Place, and then from The Judge (Maya Rudolph) who decided to wipe everything away and start again from scratch. However, finally, after everything the gang has made it to The Good Place and it is here that they get to have their best times. Now we will be looking at the episode as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.
As someone who generally enjoys fantasy, it is surprising that it took me this long to really get into The Witcher franchise. I had tried in the past with the video games, but by the time I was helping a miss-carried baby to get back into the grave it all got a bit too weird without the context, to add to this, the books seemed this large mountain of work that I didn’t know where to start with. Well with the new series starting I thought now was as good as time as any to dive into the world of the brooding Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill).
So to set the scene, in a world of magic and monsters lives many feuding kingdoms and power structures in the land known as The Continent. We open in the kingdom of Cintra, ruled by its Queen Calanthe (Jodhi May). All is well until the day that the evil Nilfgaard set their sights on them burning their capital to the ground and killing all they find. Calanthe in her last act sends her granddaughter Cirilla “Ciri”(Freya Allan) away with one mission, to survive and find Geralt. Geralt himself is off in another kingdom stuck in a war between a powerful mage Stregobor (Lars Mikkelsen) and a bandit/princess Renfri (Emma Appleton). Meanwhile, a girl with a deformed back works caring for the pigs of her father. But Yennefer of Vengerberg’s (Anya Chalotra) life is forever changed when the powerful sorceress Tissaia de Vries (MyAnna Buring) arrives and buys her for a couple of coins. Now we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there may be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – This is a show that deals with sex and sexuality in a very frank and refreshing way which you will find endlessly engaging or very off-putting
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
There are some shows that are irreverent for no reason other than the fact that cheap humour gets looks, so pitching your show at the lowest common denominator is a good business model. The crassness has no reason to be there bar being a punchline for people to awkwardly laugh about. However, once in a while you get a show that goes through all the different sex jokes you can have, and indeed it starts with a montage about someone discovering masturbation, however, not once is it about playing it low but instead, it finds a voice for those who don’t quite know how to express each other.
So to set the scene, at the end of last season everything at Moordale Secondary School was in a state of flux with Adam (Connor Swindells) being sent away to military school, Maeve (Emma Mackey) has been expelled, and while Otis (Asa Butterfield) final finds someone to love him back with Ola (Patricia Allison) but it comes at the expense of his one true love Maeve. In the time since Otis has discovered how to achieve release, Maeve has started work in a local mall to get by, Eric (Ncuti Gatwa) has developed a crush on the new kid Rahim (Sami Outalbali), and Otis’ mum Jean (Gillian Anderson) is still seeing Ola’s father Jakob (Mikael Persbrandt) even though they had told their kids that they had broken up. Which is the perfect storm for a chlamydia outbreak to cause the school to fall into a state of chaos. Now we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there may be some [SPOILERS] ahead.