Scifi TV geeks have been waiting for a long time for a series that matches the epic sweep of Babylon 5 or Battlestar Galactica. Thus, when it was announced that Syfy was adapting James SA Corey’s Expanse series, there was palpable excitement amongst geeks that perhaps the wait was over. Based on the pilot, there is enough evidence that The Expanse may have a shot at emulating the greatness of the aforementioned series.
Netflix’s collaboration with Marvel featuring the grittier, street-wise superheroes of New York (of the Marvel Cinematic Universe) enters into Phase Two with Jessica Jones. Whilst Daredevil has a marquee-level brand recognition, Jessica Jones would only be familiar to diehard comic book fans, from the Marvel MAX series, Alias. Thus, it represented a bit of a risk for Netflix-Marvel to produce a Jessica Jones series over a more prominent character like say, The Punisher or even Luke Cage. But the gamble paid off and how!
I am a pretty emotional person, and am more so when I get older – I guess when you have a greater experience of loss and sadness – these scenes hit home. Sure, some of them are melodramatic and in fantastical settings (and one of them involves an imaginary friend) but death is a fact of life that as human beings, we will always be trying to come to terms with. Until of course, our own time is up! Enjoy (or not, as the case may be).
And… spoilers, duh!
Supergirl is the latest superhero TV series and joined the likes of The Flash (2nd Season), Arrow (4th) & Agents of SHIELD (3rd) in an ever-increasing costumed tights buffet. I don’t count Gotham as a superhero TV series as it is just a (boring) police procedural set in the Batman universe & worse still, a prequel (I hate prequels).
Ironically, despite the fact that the pilot was leaked online months ago, Supergirl’s premiere episode did very well out of the blocks. Presumably, the female lead and Superman associations put the new series in good stead. Apparently this series is based on the Christopher Reeve Superman continuity and thus adopts a more light-hearted tone. And thus has nothing to do with current DC comics continuity (which is messed up) or the DC movie universe as established by Man of Steel (very very dark) – which makes sense.
However, because of this, there is less Geek Out value to Supergirl compared to the other series above-mentioned & will probably appeal more to the Gotham crowd than hardcore comic book geeks. The Flash and Arrow still have an edge over Agents of SHIELD, due to the CW writers and producers being more faithful to the source material than even Marvel itself, surprisingly.
Oliver Queen’s running for Mayor of Star City (Arrow) and the appearance of King Shark (!!!) in The Flash (not to mention the new Firestorm) in the latest episodes gives us geeks exactly what we want in a superhero TV series – nods to original material, over the top heroics & of course, ridiculous villains! Awesome fun!
If you haven’t seen The Walking Dead Season 6 Episode 3 yet, then I suggest you stop reading because SPOILERS ensue!
Well, it may have taken 54 years but better late than never! Finally, the concept of the DC multiverse first mooted in The Flash #123 (1961) makes its way into mainstream pop culture.
The second episode of CW’s The Flash Season 2 sets up this premise as the core storyline for the series with the introduction of Jay Garrick (the Flash of Earth-2). Kudos to the writers and producers of the show for diving boldly into this challenging scifi-superhero concept. That last bit teasing the Earth-2 Harrison Wells was brilliant as well – could Wells be Zoom? Can’t wait to see how The Flash develops this in the episodes to come!
This week brought along the return of The Flash and the third episodes of Limitless and Agents of SHIELD (Season 3).
Bit of a curveball as we started Season 2 of The Flash with the disappearance of Ronnie Raymond (yeah, we know he isn’t dead – Firestorm is part of DC: Legends of Tomorrow) and Barry Allen isolating himself from his loved ones in the six months following. Well, along comes the really lame super-villain Atom Smasher, whose only purpose is to introduce the villain of the season (Zoom) and the family all coming together as one. If you are wondering, Jay Garrett (the ‘Golden Age Flash’) appears at the end. But slow moving – c’mon this is The Flash – but next episode promises more…
Agents of SHIELD is finally a fully-fledged superhero TV show with Daisy (formerly Skye) demonstrating her Inhuman powers. However, the team is fragmented with May hiding out with her father & Simmons on some desolated planet. But not for too long as Ward reforms HYDRA and the Agents get together again to face the emerging threat.
Was rather skeptical about this TV adaptation of the Limitless movie but this episode demonstrated that the over-arching story concerning the plans that Senator Eddie Morra (Bradley Cooper) has for our protaganist Brian, has legs and the introduction of the diabolical Mr Sands (Colin Salmon, Walter Steele from Arrow) into Brian’s life is a masterstroke. Looking forward to see how the show develops this. Oh and Jennifer Carpenter is a pure gem as always!
… still there’s more …
Spoilers lie in wait. You have been warned.
Following the ongoing success of The Walking Dead, AMC and creator Robert Kirkman brought us the prequel companion series Fear the Walking Dead, having decided to give us the chance to experience the infection from the beginning. Concluding its first season this past Sunday, the show gave us an interesting look at the slow fall of civilization that led up to the impending zombie apocalypse we see Rick and gang battling. But for a season that (according to most fans) started out slowly, it ended with quite the bang and one of the largest walker hordes shown to date.
The new TV season is upon us geeks – even as Fear The Walking Dead and The Strain end their respective storylines for the time being (both will definitely be back), The Leftovers returns.
Considering how popular The Walking Dead is, it’s no surprise that this spin-off did well in terms of viewership. Fear the Walking Dead was a disappointment though and never got near to the intensity, drama and characterisation that its parent series managed in its powerful debut season (which was also only six episodes).
The Strain‘s second season was rather mixed. Plotlines were left dangling, women characters were killed off & still we are nowhere closer to resolving key issues.
Now, I enjoyed the polarising quasi-religious HBO series The Leftovers and am glad to report that Season 2 is off to a great start by introducing a new town and a new family into the storyline before more familiar faces turn up. As usual, all the weird elements remain intact – goat sacrifice in a diner, anyone? – with ominous undertones bubbling under the surface wonderfully.
The Walking Dead is one of the most successful shows currently on television and with good reason. It is a smart, character-driven drama that has captivated audiences by constantly developing their characters and letting us become invested in their stories as they journey through the zombie apocalypse. It seems that AMC is hoping to make lightning strike twice by creating a companion series for the popular show entitled Fear the Walking Dead.
Instead of in the south, Fear the Walking Dead takes place in Los Angeles in the several-week period that Rick Grimes was in a coma and is unable to witness the slowly descending horror. We are able to watch how things fall apart in a major metropolitan area as it crumbles under the weight of the hordes of the undead.
CW is on a roll with its superhero TV series and the new trailer for new series DC Legends of Tomorrow tries to ensure that you do not forget this fact!
So… we are ‘treated’ to a recap of the origins of Arrow and The Flash – for the newbies probably – before being introduced to the Legends team one more time.
Rather inconsequential all told but keeping expectations in holding mode till 2016.
See what you think.
… still there’s more …
By now, it becomes abundantly clear that George RR Martin and the writers of Game of Thrones have no clue what to do. Instead of intriguing plot lines and character development, the TV series is a sequence of scenes with maximum shock value to incite internet buzz and cultivate some kind of false belief that Game of Thrones is one of the best TV shows ever.
Remember LOST? A series that began almost perfectly before getting entangled by too many convoluted plot lines that were thrown up just to keep interest at fever pitch but without any intention of resolving anything? Well, that’s happening with Game of Thrones. Too many plot lines going nowhere. Instead of character development, shock deaths, loss of limbs, blindness, rape etc are dumped on characters to generate sympathy and create the illusion of edginess.
Season 5 proves quite conclusively that the TV series is as clueless as the books in trying to tell a coherent story. The abuse of Sansa Stark, the immolation of Princess Shireen, the public shaming of Queen Cersei, the blinding of Arya Stark, the overthrow of Queen Daenerys Targaryen, the deaths of Mance Rayder, Stannis Baratheon and even Jon Snow (above) is simply shock overdrive in order to mask a lack of narrative ideas.
Remember the finale of Season 1? Daenerys turned the tragic death of Khal Drogo into an epiphany with the birth of her three dragons but even that promise proved hollow. Every subsequent season has delivered disappointment after disappointment as one by one, main protagonists are killed off until there’s hardly anyone left to root for in this abysmally, depressing story called Game of Thrones.
Now, when is Season Six?
With Game of Thrones well into its fifth season, the popular HBO television show is going strong and holding its audience captive every week with its unpredictable story and multi-layered characters. Considering the intricate twists and turns it takes, it is no surprise that fans have formed various theories about their favorite characters—no matter how absurd they may seem! Here are just a couple of those theories:
The Identity of Jon Snow’s Parents (The R + L = J Theory)
“R + L = J” literally translates to “Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon,” meaning that Jon Snow isn’t Ned’s son, but the product of an affair between Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. This theory gained steam during this season’s episode “Sons of the Harpy,” when Stannis commented that it was out of Ned’s character to defy his wife Catelyn. If this birth equation is true, it means Jon is the true heir to the Iron Throne.
Tyrion Lannister is Really a Targaryen
Another heated debate in the Game of Thrones realm is who the real father of Tyrion Lannister is. Some fans believe it to be King Aerys Targaryen after he forced himself on Tyrion’s mother, thus making Tyrion Lannister a Targaryen. The theory continues that Tywin, being enraged at the situation, used a drug on Joanna Lannister to abort the baby. While this attempt failed, it can explain the dwarfism in Tyrion.
Dragonglass is Actually Dragon Poop
This one reads more like a biology lesson than a fan theory, but it is still interesting to consider nonetheless. A Reddit user hypothesized that dragonglass is nothing more than dragon waste. The theory goes that dragons tunnel through the ground and eat sand. This sand then enters the dragon’s fiery stomach and heats up and forms glass. Once this molten glass exits the dragon’s body, it cools and the people forge great weapons out of it.
Jon Snow is Azor Ahai
“The Prince That Was Promised” has long been a mystery to Game of Thrones fans but some feel they know the true identity of the great Azor Ahai. Melisandre’s theory is that it is Stannis Baratheon who is the true Azor Ahai but readers have noticed that her visions of Azor Ahai are not a clear cut as she thinks. A growing faction of fans are speculating that it is actually Jon Snow who matches the red priestess’ visions. Though it is also possible that Azor Ahai is three people after Daenerys’ vision where Rhaegar claims that “the dragon shall have three heads.”
Syrio and Jaqen H’ghar Are the Same Person
Is Syrio dead? That seems to be the heart of this fan theory. When Syrio was last seen by fans, he was about to face off against Meryn. In the end, it is Meryn that walks out alone and we assume he is victorious. However, no one actually sees Syrio die, which is the fuel that perpetuates this theory. The connections between Syrio and Jaqen H’ghar may not be the end-all to the argument but take a couple factors into account: the similar phrasing when they speak, the special attention paid to Arya, and even the ease in which Jaqen figured out Arry was actually Arya Stark. It makes you think!
Game of Thrones is full of surprises, and there is no sign that it will stop anytime soon. Some of these theories may seem a little ridiculous but given the plot twists and shock factors of the past seasons, nothing seems impossible. Make sure you keep up with the show on HBO Go or DTV up until the season finale later this month for more of this excitement!
The last two years have been amazing for superhero comic book geeks. In the wake of the mega-success of The Avengers, superheroes have gone from strength to strength with Arrow and Agents of SHIELD setting the pace for superhero TV as well. But it is with The Flash, that geeks can truly see the potential of TV series that are faithful to the core values of the original comic book. From the very beginning, the folks behind The Flash have been committed to the tone of DC Comics’ Silver Age – superheroes created by science, tongue-in-cheek reference points without sacrificing the crucial human element – by getting the casting right (Grant Gustin must be the find of the season!), ensuring quality writing on the episodes and giving something back to the diehard geeks on a consistent basis (Mark Hamill saying the line “I am your father” for one!).
Could the much anticipated finale live up to the hype? Yes it could and how! The pacing of the finale kept keen watchers on tenterhooks for most of the duration as Barry Allen tried to resolve the conundrum – should he change the past and lose his present? The emotional resonance was kept to a reasonable degree but that didn’t stop me from crying buckets at different points. Along the way, the writers also offered glimpses of things to come in Season 2, even as The Flash made his critical decision to pursue justice instead of mere sentimentality. Still that did not prepare me for the shock twist at the end! A brilliantly conceived denouement that brought about a catastrophe that left Season 1 on a cliffhanger.
And so, we are left hanging and looking forward to DC’s Legends of Tomorrow before The Flash Season 2 speeds into our lives! Can’t hardly wait!
Well, with the successes of CW’s DC superheroes, it was inevitable that Fox would jump on the bandwagon with their stable of mutant stars. Guess Marvel will counter with New Inhumans, eh???
The Vision gets the spotlight in this Avengers: Age of Ultron poster.
Entertainment drops a cool shot of the Thing from the Fantastic Four reboot.
First look at Yellowjacket from the Ant-Man movie.
Ok so not a movie but this is how Daredevil‘s traditional red costume is presented in the Netflix series.
… still there’s more …
Time to consolidate reviews on the weekly superhero TV fare out there.
FLASH Season 1 Episode 15 (CW)
By all accounts, a pretty dark instalment in the Flash’s story so far. Things go wrong for quite a few of the supporting characters : for Cisco as he discovers Dr. Well’s secret and for Joe as the new Weather Wizard seeks revenge, though the Barry-Iris relationship takes a new twist and in attempting to save Central City from destruction, the Flash goes literally faster than time. A critical point in the narrative.
Am beginning to despair at The Walking Dead. Group characters are dropping like flies in Season 5. A bit of an overkill, I would argue. Yes, I understand the dynamics of this dystopian future reality but it’s still ultimately a TV show. It’s almost dark for the sake of being dark. As more is revealed, we discover that Alexandria is not the paradise we imagined (as expected) and in sharp contrast to our group, the Alexandrians are not willing to sacrifice their lives for their fellow man.
With two episodes left till the end of the season, the series is building up to a climax that will most probably end in tears. Who will be left standing? I shudder to think.
To be honest, after the intense drama over Olivia’s kidnapping, it was hard to imagine how the series could ramp up again after that high. But this episode hints at a whole new ball game, with the introduction of Susan Ross the new Vice-President and Huck’s wife reporting B613 to the Attorney-General, there’s a whiff of something dark and sinister on the horizon.
That all said, it was rather annoying to see Olivia sulking throughout the entire episode. Yes, I get that she suffered through an awful ordeal but you would think she would be used to all the nonsense by now. Or maybe not.
Things are finally cooking in Agents of SHIELD! Asgardian Lady Sif returns chasing a Kree warrior (in disguise) and the latter explains Kree history regarding the Diviners, Terragenesis and (without saying the word) the Inhumans. Also, Skye is outed as an Inhuman and Coulson, May and team do their best to protect her but things are not peachy within the ranks. Mack and Bobbie are working against their team-mates and whilst it seems par for the course for a spy drama, it is an annoying plot device after all the HYDRA nonsense.
What is significant is that it is obvious that the Agents of SHIELD will feature strongly as a lead-in to the Inhumans movie – which is still years away though. It is great though that the MCU continues to be brought more into play – just resolve that Mack-Bobbie conspiracy ASAP!
This episode was all about the secret origins of Mike Ehrmantraut (Jonathan Banks) and an emotional one at that. Ehramantraut was such a popular character on Breaking Bad, that it is so intriguing to finally get to see a bit of his backstory. Considering that we are still in prequel mode for Better Call Saul, this episode not only plants the seeds for the relationship between our titular character and Ehrmantraut, it offers us a glimpse into the latter’s soul that was previously unfathomable.
At the very end, when Ehrmantraut breaks down in front of his daughter-in-law over the fate of his son, it’s impossible not to feel the pain in his eyes and the helpless sense of regret. Quite possibly, the best in the series thus far.
80s comic book creators like Alan Moore and Frank Miller demonstrated that a dark and gritty take on superheroes was a highly viable artistic path. That this approach was also lucrative was proven by Christopher Nolan in his Dark Knight movie trilogy and to a lesser extent, The Man of Steel. And as much as Arrow has benefitted from this perspective as well, it is only now with Netflix’s adaptation of Marvel’s Daredevil will we be seeing the first proper dark and gritty superhero TV series. All episodes drop on 10th April, so check out the 2nd trailer in the meantime.
What’s going on? Why are our intrepid gang of survivors acting like the bad guys? How am I supposed to feel about Carol threatening a young child in order to conceal a secret? Are Rick and company totally unable to adapt to normal life and trust anyone now?
These questions and more will plague you as you try to understand the fundamental changes confronting our favourite characters on The Walking Dead. Despite the apparent peace and calm of Alexandria, Rick, Carol and Daryl are expecting the worst and are acting accordingly.
This will all end in tears. It is guaranteed.