unnamed-1

The Beauty and Vulnerability of Netflix’s Queer Eye

On Feb. 7, Netflix released its reboot of mid-2000s hit reality series Queer Eye. For the uninitiated, Queer Eye features a crew of gay men — the “fab five” — who rejuvenate their subjects’ lifestyles. Each fab five member has a specialty: fashion (Tan France), grooming (Jonathan Van Ness), interior design (Bobby Berk), culture (Karamo Brown) and food and wine (Antoni Porowski). At first blush, Queer Eye sounds like an indulgent, if light, watch.

Black Mirror

Black Mirror: What Would Wilbert Do

I believe that we (“we” being those who watched the show, so yes, there will be spoilers) can all agree that “USS Callister” is the best installment on this season of Black Mirror. It had terrifying technology, surprising humor, an introspective meaning and plot twists that make M. Night Shyamalan gasp. But, it’s really the technology that I am concerned with. Since we are on the same page, here is the question: What will we do if the Black Mirror world arrives? Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror paints a universe that takes place in the future.

420_mindhunter_104_unit_01867r2 (1)

Mindhunter Drove Me Crazy

If, like me, you spent your Thanksgiving break binging a show about serial killers instead of spending time with friends and family, Charles Manson’s recent death probably struck you as a “crazy” coincidence. See I’ve spent the last couple days watching one of Netflix’s newest original series, Mindhunter, which follows two late ’70s FBI Behavioral Science Unit agents as they attempt to delve into the psyches of the nation’s most heinous criminals. Produced by David Fincher and starring Jonathan Groff, whose voice who might recognize from Hamilton (King George) and Frozen (Kristoff), and Holt McCallany, who you’ll recognize from something or other, the series’ first season explores the depths of human depravity and the ripples it creates in the lives of those around the edge of the pit. The material this show covers is pretty inherently interesting. The team’s interviews with the killers are wonderfully chilling but it was seeing our “good guys” slowly start to change as a result of those interviews that was the icing on the cake for me.

Screenshot_68-590x390

Grey’s Anatomy, Back Tonight, Faces Mixed Expectations

A fair warning — this article doesn’t hold back any spoilers. If you’re not prepared to read about some of the biggest shocks of the show, this is your chance to turn back. 

There is nothing I hate more than when producers make terrible sequels to original movies or when TV shows drag on too long. Mean Girls 2 and 3? Terrible. The five millionth Bring It On movie?

the-defenders-3-1068x601

The Defenders Meets the Hype

The Defenders, like the four superheroes who make up its name, is ambitious and flawed, yet overall entertaining. Surprisingly, it truly does feel like the worlds-colliding TV show it was billed as, as well as feeling fresh and original. Since 2012, viewers have seen Avengers assemble, CW shows crossover, X-Men band together, will soon witness the Justice League unite, and thus the mere prospect of seeing another spandexed group of individuals in the same room (or in The Defenders case: a chinese restaurant) does not excite as it used to. Nonetheless, seeing these heroes from all over New York City set aside their differences to sacrifice for the collective and greater good is still exciting. It is a gripping series that services each individual’s character arc and adds another dimension to the gritty, street level noir setting of New York.

maxresdefault

Laughing at Myself in Silicon Valley

As a native of the place, I have an interesting relationship with HBO’s comedy show Silicon Valley. If it were to lionize the tech industry that gives my hometown it’s name, I would probably not like it very much, but the show’s writers choose to take the route of a somewhat affectionate parody instead. As such, it’s always a bit hard to tell whether the show is celebrating the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship that the Valley likes to think it has, or offering a serious critique of those ideas.

COURTESY OF HBO

The Political Jokes in Veep Are More Realistic Now

Almost every Grey’s Anatomy fan I know went through the “I’m going to be a surgeon” phase. Despite hating every one of my science courses and getting a 2 on AP Bio, I did too. However, Veep pushed me into a more realistic phase: to work in politics or government. I wanted to work on the Hill in D.C. like Vice President Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus). I thought her chief of staff Amy Brookheimer (Anna Chlumsky) was absolutely one of the coolest, funniest and most competent people ever.

iron fist

Iron Fist Is Surprisingly Soft

Every time I watch an action movie I walk out with delusions of grandeur. I’ve been a kung fu master without a shred a discipline, a fearsome swordsman without a blade and a lethal sharpshooter without a day of training. Rocky turned every mirror into a fierce boxing opponent and the top of every staircase into the end of an epic training montage. Gladiator turned every oblong cylinder I could find into a sword and every room into a colosseum. Saving Private Ryan turned literally every object into a gun — and I mean that!

Screenshot 2017-03-22 23.33.30

Nickelodeon Tries to Join the Tolerance Bandwagon — and Fails Spectacularly

Tolerance. Prejudice. These two concepts are on everybody’s minds nowadays. Racial, ethnic, political and religious tensions are flaring around the world — including in our own country. It’s an uncertain time for children to grow up in, and some aren’t learning about the importance of coexisting with others who differ from themselves. That’s where several media studios are stepping up.

And then there’s Nickelodeon’s new show, Bunsen is a Beast.

Bunsen-Is-A-Beast-Cast-Stars-Characters-Butch-Hartman-Nickelodeon-USA-Nick-Com

One of The Saddest Stories in Animation

Let me preface my column with a countdown of the saddest stories in animation:

Littlefoot saying goodbye to his dying mother in The Land Before Time. Carl and Ellie’s life story unfolding at the beginning of Up.  The demise of Nickelodeon

I’ve written about Nickelodeon and its downfall before, but the issue came back to the forefront of my mind with a big event that got hyped up: Nickelodeon has recently put together the first Nicktoons crossover in over a decade! When I was little, I remember when The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius and The Fairly Oddparents crossed over in The Jimmy Timmy Power Hour.  That was kind of a big deal for me.