Television

The Walking Dead S5E2

The Walking Dead S5E2

by: Oliver Layco

Last week on The Walking Dead Rick and the gang were able to escape Terminus while burning it down to the ground. This week was a fairly simple episode of the group patching things up and figuring out their next move. Again, I’m not sure which direction my writing will take me so *SPOILERS AHEAD*

 

Okay, so the episode starts off with the crew slow-walking into the camera while fading in and out to several characters having one-on-ones. There’s Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Carol (Melissa McBride) trying to fill each other in on what happened since they last saw each other; Rick (Andrew Lincoln) thanking Carol for rescuing them and asking if it’s alright they join each other. After that little montage, we are introduced to Father Gabriel Stokes (Seth Gilliam) as he is under attack by some walkers before everyone comes in to rescue him. Right off the bat he gave off a weird vibe to me; especially since he survived for this long and apparently didn’t kill any walkers or humans yet. Either way, the group trusts him enough to follow him back to his church and they find out that he is truly alone. From there they decide to go on a supply run in the town nearby while they can. Once there, we are introduced to water zombies! If I remember correctly, when humans die the flesh can absorb water and get bloated. Once Rick, Father Gabriel, Michonne (Danai Gurira), Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green), and Bob (Lawrence Gilliard Jr.) make it to the food bank they have to go down in the water to gather the supplies. It turns out the good Father is really panicky around walkers and almost gets himself killed. Bob then gets pulled underwater by one and we are led to believe that he got bit but is trying to hide it from the group. After they all get back to the church, Carl (Chandler Riggs) finds some weird markings and words that were carved into the building that confirm suspicions of Father Gabriel. The group then goes inside to enjoy a dinner and some wine. In the meantime, Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) gives a toast and makes his case for everyone to join them in Washington. All is not well though when Bob steps outside to presumably kill himself because he got bit, but at the last minute we see that Gareth (Andrew J. West) and the Terminus crew have hunted them down to finish their meal. We are left with the image of Bob without a leg! And it looks like the Terminus crew will be a season long problem. Overall, the episode was well paced with enough development and action to keep us interested.

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The Walking Dead S5E1

The Walking Dead S5E1

by: Oliver Layco

The Walking Dead has returned! And Rick and the gang look to get some vengeance on the Terminus crew. Not sure how this is gonna turn out while I’m writing so, *SPOILERS AHEAD!*

 

Okay so last we saw Rick (Andrew Lincoln), Glenn (Steven Yeun), Michonne (Danai Gurira), and the gang were tricked from the Terminus crew who turned out to be crazy cannibal people. The episode actually starts off with an interesting look into what we’re bound to see through the rest of the season. It appears that Gareth (Andrew J. West) and some of the Terminus crew were locked in familiar train cars and were being tortured by another gang. They then mentioned later in the episode that they weren’t always out to hurt people. So that can develop out but I’m not too sure how long they’ll really need to explain their origins. Cutback to our main crew, and we see what happened in some of those promotional images released a earlier. While it was a very tense situation, events would unfold that the crew thankfully got themselves out of. These events were actually set off by Carol (Melissa McBride). Now, I’ve had a love/hate relationship with her character but all her actions through the episode made me lean the needle in the love way. Needless to say, there was sufficient action and tense situations throughout the episode as they were all trying to escape. As Terminus was burning down, I was siding with Rick when he wanted to go back to finish the job so that they wouldn’t be bothered by them anymore; but then that would have gotten rid of the whole opportunity to explain Terminus’ origins and descent into crazy. We also got some sort of explanation of the cure from Eugene (Josh McDermitt); although I still don’t understand the big deal in keeping everything classified if it means saving humanity. I also noticed some interesting side talk between Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) and Rosita (Christian Serratos) about potentially leaving the group to continue their mission. Then the reunion! At the end of all this madness, we see Carol, Tyreese (Chad L. Coleman), and Judith found the group. This was a moment long coming and when Rick saw Judith again that was the first in a long while where I can remember him smiling and looking relieved. Anyways, I hope the season can carry good pacing and not fall into its usual trap of good first few episodes, slow middle, then a good ending. Until next episode and my next set of ramblings friends!

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Gotham Debut is Suprisingly Good

Gotham Debut is Suprisingly Good

by: J.D. Cook

I must admit I was very skeptical of whether a pre-Batman Gotham based T.V. series would work. On the surface I just didn’t feel like the characters would work without Batman at the center. That said I decided to sit through the pilot because I didn’t want to write something off without first giving it a chance. I’m so thankful I did because this episode was excellent! Benjamin McKenzie does an excellent job playing a young James Gordon and I was already a fan of Donal Logue but he plays Harvey Bullock with a passion I didn’t expect. The supporting cast was equally astounding! David Mazouz plays a great Young Bruce Wayne and even Jada Pinkett Smith seemed legit as new character Fish Mooney. All of that said I was totally hooked when Gordon went to Wayne Manor and made a promise to Bruce to clean up Gotham. This seemed like a scene that could have stepped out of the Nolan films or the comics. The take on the characters seemed fresh despite how exposed they are in the public consciousness at the moment. The freshest take was on Alfred however who came off more bitter then in any of his other incarnations. He seemed a bit more human and less sage than I am used to but I am interested in seeing where Sean Pertwee takes the character. Along with all of this the show paraded a list of Batman villains: The Riddler, The Penguin, Poison Ivy, Catwoman and Carmine Falcone all make minor to large appearances in the Pilot! Alright I’m done with my rant! Check out the show if you get a chance!

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Agents of Shield: Season Wrap Up

Agents of Shield: Season Wrap Up

by: J.D. Cook

The final two episodes of Agents of Shield really put a great cap on what was a great show for the most part. Yes it started a bit slow but as I said back then. It had to develop its characters! Would Deathlok mean as much to us as viewers if we didn’t see him start out as Mike Peterson (J. August Richards)? I don’t think so. Would Skye’s (Chloe Bennet) ominous heritage disturb us if we didn’t see her start out as a lost hacker chick? Again the answer is no. Finally would Ward (Brett Dalton) make a compelling villain if we hadn’t seen him as a hero for the majority of the first season? A big giant NO! So with that in mind what were the biggest themes and subjects brought up or unresolved in the first season of Agents of Shield? Let’s delve in!

The biggest one has to be Skye’s parents. Who are they? I’ve heard a bunch of different theories but one I really hope comes true is that she is the daughter of the actual Mandarin. Iron Man’s nemesis was confirmed as an actual character and not just Ben Kingsley’s humorous fake terrorist Trevor Slattery in Marvel’s short film All Hail the King. Since Iron Man 4 is still something of a mystery it wouldn’t be surprising if they used the Mandarin as the chief villain of the show next season. As a fan anything would make me happier than the version of the character I got in Iron Man 3. Although since Season 2 will take place after Guardians of the Galaxy the Mandarin’s rings could definitely show up in the show as they are linked to extraterrestrial life. How cool would it be if the Agents spent part of the season competing with the Mandarin’s shadowy forces to obtain the ten rings of power? Then we find out Skye’s none other than the chief adversaries own daughter! There isn’t a precedent for the Mandarin having a daughter in the comics but I’m open to it!

Another group that should pop up more because of the Guardians expansion of the Marvel Universe are the Kree. They are an intergalactic race that pops up frequently in Marvel Comics. They are rather human like except for their blue skin. It seems like they are the obvious species that Coulson (Clark Gregg) and Skye’s wonder drug was derived from. On top of that they are the source for the Inhumans in the Marvel Universe.

The Inhumans are essentially people whose ancestors were experimented on by the Kree thus giving them dormant super powers that can emerge. In many ways they can serve as the Marvel Cinematic Universes’ answer to Mutants since Fox Studios owns the rights to those characters. I wouldn’t be surprised if both the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are Inhumans in the upcoming, Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Since Skye and Coulson now have Kree blood who knows what super powers they might develop in future episodes! At the very least they got some kind of knowledge of where to find the Kree home world! Hence the crazy map drawing Coulson was doing at the end of the last episode!

I felt it was kind of hilarious that after spending so much of the show wondering why and how Coulson came back to life the answer ended up being as simple as Nick Fury felt like the world still needed him. There really wasn’t a very grand conspiracy. Samuel L. Jackson’s cameo in which this was explained was also fantastic, along with the return of Coulson’s gun from the Avengers!

As for Fitz (Iain De Caestecker)…well I think we all know he will wake up at some point. The one disappointing aspect of Agents of Shield this season was that the writers didn’t seem willing to kill off any characters except Bill Paxton’s super villain who served his purpose for the first season. Paxton’s presence on the show really served to elevate it in the second half of the season. I mean he stole the show every time he was in an episode and he had probably the most memorable final scene.

Agent's of Shield Paxton's Death

Next season I would love to get more thrilling self-contained adventures that wrap into the overall narrative. We need more episodes like Yes Men and The Bridge and fewer episodes like T.R.A.C.K.S. and 0-8-4. We also need to see some of those super villains who were created this season pop back up in a nasty way. I’m looking at you Graviton! Oh and Deathlok should become a primary character quickly in season 2 so that we have a true super hero to root for!

Alright that about wraps it up! It’s been a pleasure watching this show and writing this blog and I look forward to checking out what Marvel and Whedon do in Season 2!

Previous Episodes of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Episode 20: Nothing Personal
Episode 19: The Only Light in the Darkness
Episode 18: Providence
Episode 17: Turn, Turn, Turn
Episode 16: The End of the Beginning

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Agents of Shield: Nothing Personal

Agents of Shield: Nothing Personal

by J.D. Cook

This Article has been infiltrated by SPOILERS compliments of HYDRA!

Well Agents of Shield hasn’t taken its foot off the gas yet! This week’s episode was probably Skye’s (Chloe Bennet) best showing as a character. She resourcefully trapped and played Ward (Brett Dalton) successfully escaping from him…only to be caught by Deathlok (J. August Richards). Side Note: Ward’s probably the world’s best example of secret crushes going horribly wrong. We also got a fantastic cameo from Maria Hill (Colbie Smulders) who jumped into the episode long enough to double cross the U.S. military and help Coulson (Clark Gregg) rescue Skye. I have to say the scene with Coulson and Skye escaping out of ‘the Bus’ in Lola has to be one of the best moments of the show! This episode gave the show a certain sense of synchronicity as things came full circle from the beginning of the Agents adventures.

Marvel left a few fun Easter Eggs in the episode as well. Maria Hill mentioned Man-Thing in the opening of the episode. This is actuallyMan-Thing the second time Man-Thing has popped up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as there was a reference to him in Iron Man 3. Iron Man  killed the characters wife…or at least blasted her into some telephone wires. Speaking of Iron Man I believe we got some more hints as to where the second Avengers film will pick up. Hill has joined Stark Industries and is working with him to ‘privatize world peace’ as she put it and he put it in Iron Man 2. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again but with Shield out of the picture the world is ready for the Avengers to become their primary peacekeeping force. What better backing could the team have then Stark Industries? That’s how the team’s been funded for decades in the comics after all! Captain America’s new costume even has an Avenger’s A on it. I hope that the second Avengers starts with the team established and working out of Stark’s tower in Manhattan, although, it will hopefully be referred to as Avengers Tower by then.

Then there was the fact that when Ward chastised Deathlok for hurting him he replied with the words Ward had used to justify his traitorous actions. “It wasn’t personal”, really seemed to say that Deahtlok despised Ward and what he had done. After all Deathlok is a good character forced to be evil while Ward was an evil character forced to be good for a short time. They are interesting foils for each other.

Finally the big reveal at the end of the episode was that Coulson was involved with Project T.A.H.I.T.I. before he died. He actually wanted it shut down. I guess it’s a good thing for him that Nick Fury disagreed. I’m not really sure what to make of this entirely…is Coulson going to die again? Will he get super powers? The sky is the limit when you get an alien blood transfusion!

Previous Episodes of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Episode 19: The Only Light in the Darkness
Episode 18: Providence
Episode 17: Turn, Turn, Turn
Episode 16: The End of the Beginning
Episode 15: Yes Men

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The First Issue of Magneto is Magnetic
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Agents of Shield: The Only Light in the Darkness

Agents of Shield: The Only Light in the Darkness

by: J.D. Cook

Agent’s of Surprises! Ok well maybe the episode didn’t have that many twists and turns but it was full of narrative driven goodness! We got to see the Cellist (Amy Aker) Coulson (Clark Gregg) mentioned way back in the Avengers! Doesn’t that seem like a long time ago now? Time sure is full of wibbly wobbly space time stuff…to quote Dr. Who, to which there was a reference in this week’s episode. See it all ties together…just like time!

Beware Spoilers All Who Read On!

I enjoyed discovering that Agent Triplett (B.J. Britt) was in fact the descendent of Gabe Jones (Derek Luke) who fought with Captain America as one of the Howling Commandos. We also got yet another super villain added to the show in the form of Blackout (Patrick Brennan). Although he’s not really an A list character, I always enjoy seeing the Marvel Cinematic Universe expanded. Plus he was a villain in an old PlayStation game I loved called Iron Man and XO: Man of War in Heavy Metal. This is more than likely where my love of Iron Man came from as I recall loving to play as him partially because I could shoot his Uni-beam out of his chest piece.

Anyway the real gut of the episode was waiting for the Agents newfound base to go bottoms up. Sure enough Agent May (Ming-Na Wen) decided to leave the team since Coulson wasn’t treating her as part of it anyway. Then Ward (Brett Dalton) revealed one of his many faces…since he’s Hyrdra and a traitor…that’s a ‘double’ double meaning for you right there! He shockingly snuffed out Patton Oswald. I was surprised because almost every episode Bill Paxton was in I assumed he would die but the thought never crossed my mind with Oswald. Thankfully Skye (Chloe Bennett) managed to figure out Ward’s true nature but decided to go with him anyway, presumably to figure out what he was after. I get the logic but I feel like things would have turned out better for everyone had she just hit him with the Night Night gun and tied his lying ass up.

While this was happening Coulson was protecting his cellist from Blackout but because everything’s got to be difficult when it comes to love on television he decided to let her keep thinking he’s dead instead of telling her he’s alive…yeah Coulson that’s cool just let her keep dealing with the pain of you being dead. If this was a party of some kind that would be a text book party foul…I guess it’s just a love/television foul since it’s not a party though. Then good old Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) decided to take a page right out of Coulson’s book and stayed silent on his secret love for Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) which is just going to allow Agent Triplett to hook up with her. Come On FITZ! Why are the smart ones always so aloof when it comes to these things!?

Anyway it was a great episode and this show is just consistently surprising and exciting me! Bring on next week!

Previous Episodes of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Episode 18: Providence
Episode 17: Turn, Turn, Turn
Episode 16: The End of the Beginning
Episode 15: Yes Men
Episode 14: T.A.H.I.T.I.

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The First Issue of Magneto is Magnetic
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Agents of Shield: Providence

Agents of Shield: Providence

by: J.D. Cook

Agents of Shield is gaining speed as it heads to it’s climax and we finally know who that pesky Clairvoyant is! Turns out he was none other than Bill Paxton’s Hydra turncoat Agent Garrett. I have to say I was just as disappointed as the Girl with the Flower Dress, Raina (Ruth Negga). I was kind of hoping that the Clairvoyant would turn out to be a real evil psychic separate from the entire Hydra threat. That said Hydra is the natural enemy of Shield and they work extremely well on the television show. As I predicted in last week’s blog Garret and the other traitor Ward (Brett Dalton) headed to the Fridge and freed those captured there. The most exciting thing raided from that location was the Gravitonium which we know contains Dr. Franklin Hall (Ian Hart) the future super villain known as Graviton who appeared for the first time in, the Asset. I can’t wait to see him get loose since we know he doesn’t have allegiance to Hyrdra. Perhaps his emergence will force Hydra and Shield to work together to combat him near the season’s end.

This episode focused a lot on Ward and just how twisted he really is. It was revealed, although I assumed this last week, that he has been a spy since the earliest days of the show. Unfortunately the Agents didn’t learn much from last week’s Hydra infiltration and after Ward was involved in a massive battle at the Fridge they didn’t stop to question why or how he escaped and instead let him right into their new super-secret base. On that subject it was really cool to see Coulson (Clark Gregg) as the only one still totally dedicated to both Nick Fury and Shield. His faith was rewarded when they discovered the new Shield base run by Patton Oswald who informed him and only him that Fury was in fact still alive and kicking. The base itself reminds me of ‘the Hatch’ from Lost, in that it’s underground and contains pictures for different days and such.

Agents of Shield has done a great job of bringing in supporting Cast Members this season. Bill Paxton, J. August Richards and now Patton Oswald have been outstanding on the show thus far! I don’t really know what else I can say except that this show has been one of the biggest highlights of my week right behind Game of Thrones!

Previous Episodes of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Episode 17: Turn, Turn, Turn
Episode 16: The End of the Beginning
Episode 15: Yes Men
Episode 14: T.A.H.I.T.I.
Episode 13: T.R.A.C.K.S.

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The First Issue of Magneto is Magnetic
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