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

TL;DR – This opening episode does not do a whole lot to forward the story, which is fine, because it delves us into a world of intrigue.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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

A cresent moon.

Andor Review

When they first announced that there would be Star Wars tv shows on Disney+, I was excited because that was a format that I am sure they would excel in if given a chance, and it had been an oft-rumoured inevitability. Since then, we have gotten the delightful Mandalorian, but then the missed opportunity that was the Book of Boba Fett and Obi-Wan Kenobi. As such, I came into his series with a bit of concern, but this first episode has brought me nothing but intrigue.

So to set the scene, on a dark and rainy night, we see Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) make his way across a boardwalk to the glittering city Morlana One, part of the Preox-Morlana Corporate Zone in the Morlani system. He is going to the ‘leisure district’ to find out any information about his missing sister when he is accosted by two of the local security forces or Corpos. Taking his leave, Andor makes his way back to his ship when the two Corpos accost him again. 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 Orville: New Horizons (Season 3) – TV Review

TL;DR – The terrain constantly shifts out from underneath the crew of the USS Orville, as enemies become friends and friends become enemies.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I streamed this on SBS OnDemand

Ed and Kelly look out over Earth.

The Orville Review

A few years ago, it was announced that Seth MacFarlane, most well known for Family Guy, would do his take on a Space Opera, a show like Star Trek but with more jokes. It was a premise that had me both intrigued and concerned. That is because I was sure you could make that balance work, just that it would be hard, and Season One was rough at times. But by the time Season Two drew to a close, it had wholly found its feet and was soaring forward. Now it is time to dive into the much delayed and possibly final season, titled New Horizons, and if it is the end, at least it went out on a bang.

So to set the scene, in The Road Not Taken, the threat that the Kaylons pose is shown when we see a universe where the crew of the USS Orville never came together, and the galaxy is in ruin. But there is hope, and the team come together for some last-ditch time travel shenanigans to set the timeline right. It worked. But now, everyone on the ship has to work to get it ready for the next attack, and while the refit takes place, there is a lot of resentment brewing on board, with most of it landing square on the lap of the ship’s lone Kalon crewmember Isaac (Mark Jackson). While captain Ed Mercer (Seth MacFarlane) and first officer Kelly Grayson (Adrianne Palicki) work to keep the ship together, there are crew members like new navigator Charly Burke (Anne Winters), who lost people in the war and have legitimate reasons not to trust. But they will need to find that trust because the galaxy is on the precipice of collapse. Now from here, we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.     

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Westworld: Que Sera, Sera & Full Season 4 – TV Review

TL;DR – While I am not sure it landed its final episode, this season was a successful course correction, and I hope they make that one last test.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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

The Man In Black appears from the smoke.

Westworld Review

Ever since the second season of Westworld failed to capture the dramatic highs of that first season, people felt that it could never live up to the hype it built. However, I still found Season Two to be engaging, and even more, it is still the high watermark for the show for me with Kiksuya. I also enjoyed Season Three’s more streamlined narrative. However, there was a feeling that maybe the show didn’t have much more to explore. Well, if nothing else, Season Four showed the latter assertion plainly wrong. With our review today, we are first going to look at the season [or possible series] finale before taking a broader exploration of the season as a whole.

So to set the scene, at the end of last week’s Metanoia, the host copy of The Man In Black (Ed Harris) went on a killing spree, first killing the original Man In Black (Ed Harris) before taking out Maeve (Thandiwe Newton), Charlotte (Tessa Thompson), and Bernard (Jeffrey Wright). Before that can even sink in, he causes the control tones from the tower to infect every human being left on the planet to send them into a murderous rage. As Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) with Teddy (James Marsden) tries to stop the carnage, and Caleb (Aaron Paul), his daughter C (Aurora Perrineau), and Stubbs (Luke Hemsworth) try to escape it. One thing is clear: this might end sentient life on Earth. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode and season as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.   

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Westworld: Zhuangzi – TV Review

TL;DR – There is a new God, and they are bored with the human race.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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

Christina discovers the control she has.

Westworld Review

There are some aspects of Westworld that hide in the subtext, and there are others that blare at you like a foghorn. Today’s title is Zhuangzi, which takes its name from one of the core works of Taoism. Its view of a central authority starkly contrasts with other core philosophical schools of China. That tension has been playing out across Westworld’s many seasons and, as we will see, the episode today.

So to set the scene, as we have been going through the season, Caleb (Aaron Paul) and Maeve (Thandiwe Newton) have been on a mission to stop Hale/Delores (Tessa Thompson) and her mission to take over the world through the use of parasites. We didn’t know until the closing moments of Generation Loss is that Hale had already won that war a whole generation ago. She has such control over the human race, using audible sounds from the tower, that she can stop and the entire city in its tracks like it was one large Westworld park, and everyone was a host. But in the deep desert, the long-buried remains of Maeve were unearthed by the prophetic Bernard (Jeffrey Wright), and a rebellion is on the move. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.

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Star Trek: Strange New Worlds – Season 1 – TV Review

TL;DR – One of the strongest opening seasons I have seen, jumping from genre to genre like it was nothing

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Paramount+ streaming service that viewed this episode. 

The USS Enterprise from behind

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Review

In 2019, I wrote about how we were entering ‘A New Golden Age of Science Fiction on Television’ and back then, we only had Discovery and the coming Picard. We had no idea of the explosion of Star Trek that was about to come our way, and at the core of that new wave was the announcement of Strange New Worlds, a show that would explore Captain Pike’s time at the helm of the USS Enterprise. Another prequel series led to more than a bit of concern, but now that we have seen it, I can say this might be one of the best opening series of Television that I have seen in an age.

So to set the scene, after the event of Star Trek Discovery: Such Sweet Sorrow Part 2, Pike (Anson Mount) has been hiding out in his cabin in Bear Creek, Montana. He has been dealing with the revelation that he will be badly wounded in the future. To the point, he is very much considering leaving Starfleet. That is until Admiral Robert April (Adrian Holmes) takes a shuttle and unambiguously tells Pike that Number One (Rebecca Romijn) is missing and if he wants to leave, he can do it after this. Well, one, unfortunately, timed phone call to Vulcan to pick up Spock (Ethan Peck), and the Enterprise is on to Kiley 279 to find out what happened to the USS Archer. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.

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Westworld: Generation Loss – TV Review

TL;DR – All things become clear, but in a Westworld way that asks far more questions than it answers    

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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

Maeve drags Caleb to the evac point.

Westworld Review

There are many strengths to a show like Westworld. They get to play around in an interesting setting, actors take on these grand roles that let them chew all the scenery, and you get to mess with people’s expectations all the time. In Season Four, we have been getting all those things, and a plot that is moving like a cheater is chasing it in the Serengeti. The question is, can it run out of steam? Well, it hasn’t today.

So to set the scene, at the end of Annees Folles, Caleb (Aaron Paul) and Maeve (Thandiwe Newton) know they we walking into a trap, but not a trap with Caleb’s daughter (Celeste Clark) as bait, and the infestation of mind-controlling parasites as the goal. We open with Caleb screaming as the parasites take control, but Maeve is not ready to get taken out by The Man in Black (Ed Harris) just yet. Meanwhile, Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) and Stubbs (Luke Hemsworth) have been rounded up by the rebels and C (Aurora Perrineau) and her boss (Daniel Wu), who are trying to work out if they are useful or if they should just have them killed. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.  

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Obi-Wan Kenobi (Star Wars: Obi-Wan Kenobi) – TV Review

TL;DR – There are elements here and there that elevate it out of the mire it seems to have written for itself, but many parts still felt lacklustre.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

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

Inquisitors on the move.

Obi-Wan Kenobi Review

There is very little people agree on when it comes to what worked in the Star Wars prequels, but one of the few things is that Ewan McGregor knocked it out of the park with his performance of Obi-Wan Kenobi. Since then, there have been rumours and talk of films going back and forth until finally, the series was announced. I had high hopes after they got the whole band together, but I am not so sure now that I have watched it.

So to set the scene, it has been ten years since The Emperor (Ian McDiarmid) engineered his coup against the Jedi with Order 66 wiping all of them out. Well, nearly all of them, because Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) slipped through the cracks and now lives in a cave on Tatooine. He works as a butcher during the day, trying to keep a low profile. However, this is damaged when Inquisitors land on the planet looking for Jedi and Obi-Wan is forced to come out of hiding because across the galaxy, a young Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair) has just been kidnapped from her house. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode and season as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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