The Expanse: Winnipesaukee – TV Review

TL;DR – Today we start to see a glimmer of hope amongst all the destruction

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
The Expanse: Winnipesaukee. Image Credit: Amazon Studios.

Winnipesaukee Review

When those first asteroids dropped on Earth in Churn, you knew this would be a dark season for the show, which is amplified by the fact that our Roci crew was all spread to the winds when the attack happened. In today’s episode, we get to see the first little hope on the horizon that things might be getting better.

So to set the scene,  at the end of last week’s Hard Vacuum, Naomi (Dominique Tipper) had been able to interfere with Marco’s (Keon Alexander) automated message that he set up to lure people into a trap. We see at the start of this week’s episode that Naomi’s plan worked … sort of. On the Screaming Firehawk Bobbie (Frankie Adams) noticed that something was amiss, and even Holden (Steven Strait) on the Roci. But the question is, will they see it for the warning it is or think something has gone wrong and hurry into the trap? 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 Expanse: Hard Vacuum – TV Review

TL;DR – The churn continues throughout the Solar System as people find no matter the road forward, dangers await

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
The Expanse: Hard Vacuum. Image Credit: Amazon Studios.

Hard Vacuum Review

When the rocks hit Earth in Churn and Mother, they threw everything up in the air, both literally and metaphorically. In that one instant, power, alliances, and family all got put up for grabs, and while all of the characters of The Expanse are trying to find their new place in this world, no choice is going to be an easy one.

So to set the scene, at the end of Oyedeng, we watched as Naomi (Dominique Tipper) made a desperate leap from the Pella to the Chetzemoka in a hard vacuum without a suit. It was a perilous journey, and even though it took seconds the toll on her body severe. But as she awakes on the airlock floor, she sees just what Marco’s (Keon Alexander) plan for the Chetzemoka is. The whole ship has been wired with explosives, and on a loop is Naomi’s voice beckoning James (Steven Strait) to save her, but in reality, it is a siren call leading him to his death.  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 Expanse: Tribes – TV Review

TL;DR – Across the Solar System, everyone is trying to find their place in this new world

Rating: 4 out of 5.
The Expanse: Tribes. Image Credit: Amazon Studios.

Tribes Review

When the rocks fell on Earth, the world of The Expanse changed forever. There are obvious things like the death and damage, and the fact that more death and damage are yet to come. But in the sense of things, how the Solar System works just shifted like pulling a rug out from underneath everyone’s feet.

So to set the scene, the carnage from Marco’s (Keon Alexander) attacks in Gaugamela have continued to reverberate across the Solar System. However, in last week’s Down and Out, we found the first wrinkle in his plan. He expected the Roci to explode and take Tycho Station with it. Marco is on the back foot for the first time, but maybe it won’t be long as he tries to bring Camina (Cara Gee) back into the fold. 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 Expanse: Mother – TV Review

TL;DR – An episode where we delve into Amos’ past, and my heart breaks a little

Rating: 4 out of 5.
The Expanse: Season 5. image Credit: Amazon Studios.

Mother Review

This season the show has done something a little different compared to the last season. Instead of dropping all the episodes at once, the show is giving us the first three episodes and then doing a weekly release after that, much like the last season of The Boys. Which means this is the last of the three opening episodes that we will look at today.

So to set the scene, everything is coming to ahead as forces move throughout the Solar System with carnage on their minds. Here there becomes a race to find out the information in time and get it to the right people. But none of that matters to one person because Naomi Nagata (Dominique Tipper) just wants to save one person, her son Filip (Jasai Chase Owens). 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 Expanse: Churn – TV Review

TL;DR – An episode where we delve into Amos’ past, and my heart breaks a little

Rating: 4 out of 5.
The Expanse: Churn. Image Credit: Amazon Studios.

Churn Review

We dive straight back into the second episode of the season which continues to build the tension for the potential coming disaster. However, this episode is more of a character piece as we get to see what motivates many of our cast of characters.

So to set the scene, in the first episode Exodus we focused on all the crew going their separate ways as they flew to different parts of the Solar System. Amos (Wes Chatham) landed on Luna and after chitchat with Chrisjen (Shohreh Aghdashloo) made the trip back to his home on Baltimore. Alex (Cas Anvar) arrived on Mars and faced a frosty reception from everyone including Bobbie (Frankie Adams), and Naomi (Dominique Tipper) made her way to Pallas Station. This departure left James (Steven Strait) all alone on Tyco Station, which was the perfect time for Monica Stuart (Anna Hopkins) to arrive with tales of intrigue. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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TV Review – The Expanse: Season 4

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

The Expanse Season 4: Image Credit: Amazon Studios.

Review

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.    

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TV Review – The Punisher: Season One

TL;DR – This is a show that works just because of the charisma of its lead, however, it would have been better if it was more condensed

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

The Punisher

Review

Without a doubt, The Punisher might be the most difficult character to get right in the Netflix TV Marvel Universe. How do you make a man who murders a lot of people, a lot of people, yet still keep him a relatable character. Revenge driven storylines are thus really hard to make work because of this and for every Punisher or John Wick you have a plethora of others that don’t stick the landing. So the Punisher or Frank Castle first appeared in Season Two of Daredevil (see review) where he was one of the best parts of the entire season. However, the question is can a character like Frank work in a series all by himself? Well, that is what we will be looking at today.

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Movie Review – Star Trek Beyond

TL;DR – They finally found the right formula for the reboot series and it is glorious, the cast is amazing, the action is good, and every joke hits its mark.

Score – 5 out of 5 stars

Star Trek Beyond. Image Credit: Paramount.

Review

I think I need to start with some context before jumping into this review, on the whole, I do really like the Star Trek franchise, however, I have not been a fan of this rebooted Star Trek movie series. The first movie had great casting, but the story was full of logical problems and lazy short-cuts, that it removed any real emotional weight to killing off Vulcan, and I just really did not like it (2/5 stars). The second film Into Darkness did a little better with me, as it had some reasonably good character moments, and some interesting set pieces, but the need to recreate one of the most iconic conflicts in Star Trek, and then the ability to not quite pull it off left the movie feeling quite flat (2.5/5 stars). I want to say this upfront so you understand this 5 out of 5 I am giving the film (only the second one of 2016) is not because I am enamoured completely with everything Star Trek, I am giving this film a 5 out of 5 because it has bloomin’ well earned it.

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