Foundation: Death and the Maiden – TV Review

TL;DR – The show is starting to find its place.  

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Apple TV+ service that viewed this episode.

Foundation: Death and the Maiden. Image Credit: Apple TV+.

Foundation Review

After Foundation’s bombastic explosion onto the scene in its first episode, The Emperor’s Peace, I had become concerned with where the show was heading. It felt like it was grasping around in the dark, possibly crushed under the weight of adapting the source material with all its quirks, while trying to bring it into the 21st century. While it still feels like it is struggling to find its place, we have now seen the bedrock it is building upon, and I am intrigued.

So to set the scene, the Anacreon’s attack on Terminus has caught everyone, including the Empire, with their pants down. Well, everyone but Salvor Hardin (Leah Harvey) who spotted Phara’s (Kubbra Sait) play but not before she could enact it. Meanwhile, back on Trantor, Brother Day’s (Lee Pace) frustration with the state of things boiled over, and he breaks with thousands of years of tradition and boots Brother Dusk (Terrence Mann) off a trip to the centre of the Luminism religion in the Moon Maiden in the Surah System. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead. 

Continue reading

Foundation: The Mathematician’s Ghost – TV Review

TL;DR – We start to see the main story unfurl, but some of the more frustrating elements are still there.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Apple TV+ service that viewed this episode.

Foundation: The Mathematician’s Ghost. Image Credit: Apple TV+.

Foundation Review

‘Non-linear storytelling’ is a method of creating a narrative that does not follow the usual A->B->C->D pattern but can jump all over the place C->D->B->A. Sometimes this comes in the form of a narrative hook where they show something shocking and jump back in a week to show how they got there. Sometimes it can be used to keep an audience off-balance. Sometimes it can be a complete surprise, like in Westworld. But if you are going to employ a non-linear story, you need to make sure it improves your narrative and that you are not losing your audience in the process.

So to set the scene, at the end of Preparing to Live, we had a moment of horror as Hari Seldon (Jared Harris) is apparently murdered at the hands of his own son Raych (Alfred Enoch) while Gaal (Lou Llobell) was jettisoned out of an escape pod. This episode we open 400-years earlier when Cleon the First (Terrence Mann) is looking over the construction of the Starbridge and preparing to create the legacy of his clones. We then jump 19 years after the bombing in The Emperor’s Peace, as Brother Dusk (Terrence Mann) has started his final day before becoming Brother Darkness. While 36 years after the bombing, the colonists have landed on Terminus and have been spending their time founding a colony and starting the task of softening the fall of the galactic empire.   

Continue reading

Foundation: Preparing to Live – TV Review

TL;DR – While still showing promise, the follow-up does not hit as hard as the first.   

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Apple TV+ service that viewed this episode.

Foundation: Preparing to Live. Image Credit Apple TV+.

Foundation Review

Adapting a work from one medium to another is a complex process. Indeed, the media landscape is lifted with the failed attempts and aborted projects. This danger is amplified further when you adapt a work that is older and does not play within modern narrative frameworks. Today we continue to explore a show that is charging through this dangerous terrain by adapting a pillar of Science Fiction’s canon.

So to set the scene, Trantor is a planet still reeling from the terrorist attack in The Emperor’s Peace that destroyed the Starbridge sending the space elevator plummeting towards the planet, killing hundreds of millions on the ground. In the opening, Eto Demerzel (Laura Birn) leads a task force to Dwarf Planet Aethra to hunt down whoever financed the attack, but no clues could be found. But while the Empire reals, the Foundation is making the slow 5-year journey to the outer rim, but for all their training, projections still show that 30% of the colonists will still die in the first year. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.  

Continue reading

Foundation: The Emperor’s Peace – TV Review

TL;DR – This is a good foundation for a series that moves everything into place and hints at much more.  

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Apple TV+ service that viewed this episode.

Foundation: The Emperor’s Peace. Image Credit: Apple TV+.

Foundation Review

For a while now, I have been wondering just what would make me up and give Apple TV+ a go. Sure, I’ll probably watch Ted Lasso at some point and cry a lot, but I needed something to grab me. Well, I have made my position about Sci-Fi quite clear, and if you are going to hook me with something, adapting a series from one of the greats, well, that will do it. Isaac Asimov is up there with Arthur C Clarke, Ursula K Le Guin, Philip K Dick, Frank Herbert, Mary Shelly, and HG Wells and to see his masterwork brought to the screen, well count me in.

So to set the scene, we open in on the planet of Terminus, where on a promenade looking over the small colony is ‘the Vault’. It is a floating repository with a null field forcing you to turn away from it if you dare approach, as some local kids find out the hard way. 35-years earlier, we land on the planet of Synnax, a water world surrounded by rings. Here a young Gaal Dornick (Lou Llobell) is making a final trip from her planet. She is going to the centre of the galaxy, the home of Emperor Cleon (Lee Pace, Cassian Bilton & Terrence Mann), and where she will meet Hari Seldon (Jared Harris), the great man of mathematics and the founder of psychohistory. But little does Gaal know that the Empire’s peace is being tested and that she might just be arriving for her trial and execution. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.  

Continue reading

TV Review – Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Last Day and Season 8

TL;DR – A wonderful way to end a beloved series

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I watched this on SBS On-Demand

Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Last Day. Image Credit: NBC Studios.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine Review

After eight beautiful seasons, all good things have to come to an end, an end that could have been much sooner had people not been as passionate as they were. So it is in that vein that today we are a little happy/sad, happy for all the fun we’ve had and sad because there is no more to come. Today, we will look at first the finale double-part episode, The Last Day, and then take some time to look at the season as a whole.

So to set the scene, we open in on Amy’s (Melissa Fumero) and Raymond’s (Andre Braugher) last day in the 99, but as the gang wake, they don’t find their loved ones there but instead a waiting Jake (Andy Samberg). Because today is the day of the Final Heist, to crown The Grand Champion of the 99. It is time for hijinks to ensue as everyone picks their teams. However, one betrayal has already happened because Amy and Jake are working together. For you see, it is also Jake’s final day in the 99 and the NYPD. Because we will be looking at the season as a whole, there will be [SPOILERS] ahead for the whole season, so if you have not watched, please be aware before continuing.

Continue reading

Rick and Morty: Season 5 – TV Review

TL;DR – A season of incredible highs and deep lows

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Netflix subscription that viewed this season.

Rick and Morty. Image Credit: Netflix.

Rick and Morty Review

At the best of times, Rick and Morty are one of those shows that are hard to contextualise on a season level. Each episode tends to fly so wildly into different territories that it makes finding a through-line difficult. However, this season is a little different, as you can divide the season into three relatively neat chunks. However, this is easy because there is a vast difference between this season’s high and low marks.

So to set the scene, we open Season Five’s Mort Dinner Rick Andre with things in dire straits. Rick (Justin Roiland) has been gravely wounded, and the spaceship is badly damaged. As Morty (Justin Roiland) carries Rick to the ship, all around them are crystals showing potential Ricks and Mortys, including them as Blade Rick and Morty, which is quote “tight”. As the spaceship crashes towards Earth, uncontrollable and on fire, Morty spends his last few moments calling Jessica (Kari Wahlgren) lamenting over what could have been. She suggests they go on a day tonight. Buoyed by that opportunity, Morty manages to save the day and splash lands the spaceship into one of Earth’s oceans, which should have been good but for the fact that it summons Mr Nimbus (Dan Harmon). Because we will be looking at the season as a whole, there will be [SPOILERS] ahead, especially for the season finale, so if you have not watched, please be aware before continuing.         

Continue reading

TV Review – Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Lake House

TL;DR – A lighter follow up episode that has its moments

Disclosure – I watched this on SBS On-Demand

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Lake House. Image Credit: NBC Studios.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine Review

In last week’s The Good Ones, we got a taste of the tone the show will be setting in its final season as we explore what it means to be police in this new era. This week we get a slight course shift back to the comedic as everyone comes together to help one of their own.

So to set the scene, last week Amy (Melissa Fumero) discovered that Raymond (Andre Braugher) and Kevin (Marc Evan Jackson) have separated, and while that was meant to be a secret, now everyone knows. The whole group decided to help Raymond out by going up to his “lake” house and supporting him in this trying time. But Jake (Andy Samberg) has other plans/schemes/stratagems. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.  

Continue reading

TV Review – Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Good Ones

TL;DR –  A great welcome back and set up for the final season   

Disclosure – I watched this on SBS On-Demand

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Good Ones. Image Credit: NBC Studios.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine Review

When Season 7 finished, and we heard that Brooklyn Nine-Nine was going to come back for one more final season, there was a moment of joy that we would get one last outing for a series that has been on the bubble for a long while. But then the whole world changed (or at least it became clearer), and the question is ‘how can a show based around a comedy in a police station’ work? Well, today, we get to see just how they will address the elephant in the room.

So to set the scene, we open in the middle of the Pandemic when Jake (Andy Samberg) and Charles (Joe Lo Truglio) showing Rosa (Stephanie Beatriz) that they created a way of doing a High-5 that is Covid-safe. However, Rosa has more important news. She just put in her resignation for the police force and the Nine-Nine. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.  

Continue reading

Loki: Glorious Purpose – TV Review

TL;DR – A complete set-up episode that was still filled with a lot of potential.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Disney+ subscription that viewed this show.

Loki: Glorious Purpose. Image Credit: Disney+.

Loki: Glorious Purpose Review

Of all the recent MCU/Disney+ shows, there has been one that I have felt a lot of trepidation for. The Character of Loki (Tom Hiddleston) had its big arc after the events of Avengers, so resetting him back to that mark. Well, it felt like it would take a lot of work to stick that landing. In today’s episode, we get to see if it all holds up or not.   

So to set the scene, we start right at the time heist amid Avengers Endgame, where Loki took an opportunity to escape when the Tesseract lands in front of him. Something that decidedly did not happen in the original Avengers. With the Infinity Stone’s power, Loki jumps out of New York and lands in the Gobi Desert, Mongolia. He immediately starts on his “you shall kneel” shtick when a door opens up and some goons in black walk out. Loki is charged with crimes against the Sacred Timeline and immediately punched in slow motion. We will be looking at the episode as a whole from here, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

Continue reading

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier (Captain America and The Winter Soldier): One World, One People – TV Review

TL;DR – What a stunning end to a remarkable story.  

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is a Mid-Credit Scene

Disclosure – I paid for the Disney+ subscription that viewed this episode.

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier (Captain America and The Winter Soldier): One World, One People. Image Credit: Disney+.

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier Review

And so it has come to an end. I was unsure what The Falcon and The Winter Soldier would explore rather than let Anthony Mack and Sebastian Stan banter with each other for six episodes. However, as we have gone through this first(?) season, it is clear that the show was, of course, ready for the banter, but it wanted more. Well, today, we take a look to see, after all that promise, if the show sticks the landing.  

So to set the scene, we open in one the end of Truth, as the Flag Smashers make a move and attack the central GRC meeting in New York. Karli (Erin Kellyman) holds off until Sam (Anthony Mackie), Bucky (Sebastian Stan), and a surprise Sharon (Emily VanCamp) arrive on the scene. But Sam understands the plan. Karli wants them to evacuate because that is where she is going to attack. The question is that in the chaos, can Sam stop things before they go too far. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

Continue reading