Last week, I quoted Longfellow in an effort to illustrate the fluctuations in quality Game of Thrones often presents its viewers on a week-to-week basis; a poetic re-appropriation in the purposes of critical evaluation. This week, with “Mockingbird” — the seventh episode of this tumultuous Fourth Season — David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have proven that no such juvenile attempt at literary posturing is necessary, as they have delivered as strong an installment as the series has ever seen. Brimming with a near deluge of rousing dramatic scenes, “Mockingbird” stands as a fitting cliffhanger of a transitional episode, causing (hopefully) everyone who watched to shake their fists in anger at the fact that HBO is having the season go on a brief hiatus for Memorial Day Weekend.
*** Caution: Here There Be Spoilers… ***
Of all the visceral emotions Game of Thrones evokes in its viewers, ‘relief’ is rarely amongst them. George R.R. Matin’s dragon-filled soap opera is often cruel and treats even its biggest fans with borderline contempt. First, Ned Stark was beheaded at the behest of sniveling King Joffrey while his daughters helplessly watched. The road to avenging his death seemed like it was well paved for young Robb Stark, King of the North, until he, his mother and pregnant wife were massacred by the Lannisters at the now infamous ‘Red Wedding’. The modus operandi for both the novels and the series seems to be providing a sliver of false hope for those willing to immerse themselves in the sex and violence stuffed world to cling to; a hero that stands tall as many snakes slither in the grass at their feet. Only when those snakes strike, Martin (along with show-runners David Benioff & D.B. Weiss) seem to revel in watching your champion die a slow, painful death, knowing full well that you’re in just as much agony as the fictional character you’re mourning. It’s a mean-spirited streak not found in most mainstream media, black-hearted to the core and a big part of what makes the HBO series so special (or despicable, depending on your threshold for suffering).
But what happens when one of the villains finally gets their just desserts? Is it such a shock that the story would finally give us what we want? Or are there strings attached, as Martin & Co. just can’t help but add a caveat to our catharsis? Ladies and gentlemen, I present The Lion & The Rose, a detailed guide to how Game of Thrones doles out justice for its audience.
***Warning: Spoilers Be Nigh…***
All men must die.
The tag line for Game of Thrones’ fourth season doesn’t read like a warning so much as it does a maxim of inevitability. Last season saw the end of Robb Stark, along with his mother, Catelyn, his wife, Talisa, and an army of Stark banner-men, as they were slaughtered by Walder Frey and Roose Bolton (with a nice tactical assist from the Lannisters) at the now infamous “Red Wedding” (the second event, after the beheading of Ned Stark, that launched a thousand hilarious YouTube “reaction videos”). The Stark rebellion has been crushed, it seems, and there are no more imminent threats to the Iron Throne (unless you count that pesky “Mother of Dragons”, who still needs to cross a vast ocean in order to make a serious play). For once, the characters in the show (as well as the folks who root for them from their couches) can finally sit back and relax — nobody’s going to die anytime soon, it seems. The Lannisters are all in King’s Landing, settling into their domestic roles and midlife crises as their sneering boy king plans for his wedding.
But all men must die. And all peace, as well as the comfort that goes along with it, is only temporary.
The E! Entertainment Network is more well known for its reality show crapola like anything Kardashian related or the Anna Nicole Smith train wreck hour, but they now seem to be in the process of putting together a slate of scripted fair. Entertainment Weekly has the full list of the shows being developed, and for the nerdy amongst us, one stands out above the others.
The show will be called Dorothy, and E! describes it thusly:
DOROTHY – Inspired by the books “Dorothy” and “The Wizard of Oz,” a girl from Kansas City falls for a man and moves with him to the Emerald City to work at his Emerald Hotel. From writer Natalie Krinsky (“Gossip Girl,” “Grey’s Anatomy”) and Warner Horizon Television.
Is it just me, or does that statement not make a lot of sense? Do they mean Seattle when they say “Emerald City” or is there another Emerald City? And is there going to be some weird May-December romance thing now with Dorothy and the Wizard? Maybe E! should stick to giving has-beens and heiresses for show material…
As a reader of this blog I’m going to assume you’re excited for Cowboys & Aliens based on its title alone. You probably also enjoyed Alien vs. Predator for the mere fact that you got to watch Aliens fight Predators. If you want to see cowboys (and Indians) fightin’ aliens, then yes, this film delivers and you won’t be disappointed. But, the real surprise is when you sit down to watch these two heavyweights duke it out you’re also rewarded with a poignant, heartfelt drama.
Cowboys & Aliens is a western in the truest sense of the word, from it’s sweeping landscapes to it’s gruff characters trying to make a living in an unforgiving world. Then, you thrown in some good ‘ole fashioned alien abduction, and you’re in for fun ride.
Mild spoilerage below the cut.
The Beef Vs. Ford!
Do you remember when Shia LaBeouf talked about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull admitting that it wasn’t really all that great and that he dropped the ball? Well, to refresh your memory here’s what he said,
I feel like I dropped the ball on the legacy that people loved and cherished. I have a relationship with Steven (Spielberg) that supersedes our business work. And believe me, I talk to him often enough to know that I’m not out of line. And I would never disrespect the man. But when you drop the ball you drop the ball. You get to monkey-swinging and things like that and you can blame it on the writer and you can blame it on Steven. But the actor’s job is to make it come alive and make it work, and I couldn’t do it. So that’s my fault.
In a recent interview, Harrison Ford responded to these comments by saying, “I think he was a @#$!-ing idiot”
As an actor, I think it’s my obligation to support the film without making a complete ass of myself. Shia is ambitious, attentive, and talented – and he’s learning how to deal with a situation which is very unique and difficult.
It seems like Ford is of the opinion that, even if you feel that a film you were involved with has failed, it’s best to keep it to yourself. Meanwhile, LaBeouf is taking ownership of how unfortunate he and Indy 4 was. The question is—who’s right here? Do you stick behind your work as a sign of respect, even it’s shit, or do you become vocal about it as a means to not repeat history? I’ll leave you to debate in the comment section below.
Have you watched “Being Human“? No, not the original British one. I’m talking the new, revised, American version on SyFy Channel? Shiiiiiiiiiiit! The revamp is just as good as the original, if not better (matter of opinion). If you’re out of the loop, here’s how it goes. A werewolf, a vampire and a ghost cohabitate and try their darnedest to live and act like “normal people”. “Being Human” is harder than it looks.
Now, I never thought this show -which sounded like set-up for a bad joke- would be so astoundingly relatable. Oddly enough, it poignantly examines the human condition via super natural characters and their connections, or lack there of, with the world. Lust, despair, anger, anguish, reluctance, remorse and other underlying tones are prominent. Can I love? Can anyone love me? Why am I this way? I just want to feel/be normal. Basically, we’re talking Emo Sci-Fi. It’s good stuff. Besides emotionally besieged characters, the topics are heavy and complex. It forces you to ask difficult questions, such as what constitutes a Monster?
Suffice the say, the show is charming, in a dark, sardonic way.
Anyway, the strangest set of roommates ever—vampire Aidan (Sam Witwer), werewolf Josh (Sam Huntington) and ghost Sally (Meaghan Rath)—will continue trying to live normal lives (or afterlives) in a Boston brownstone, because Syfy announced today that the hit series will be back for a second season.
A Snippet from SyFy press release:
New York, NY – March 17, 2011 – Syfy is ordering a second season of its new hit drama series Being Human, it was announced today by Mark Stern President of Original Content, Syfy and Co-Head of Original Content, Universal Cable Productions. Since the show’s January 17 launch, premiere episodes of Being Human have averaged 1.8 million viewers making it Syfy’s most successful winter season scripted series launch in 6 years.
I for one am thrilled that SyFy will be able to keep this amazing series on a Network that seems to be doing everything it can to euthanize itself. I’m still mad about Caprica and Stargate Universe.
HIT THE JUMP for the full press release.
Take a small group of civilians, scientists and soldiers, send them into the prehistoric times with hopes of saving the human race from their planet’s dying present and you get ‘Terra Nova‘. The Series, produced by Steven Spielberg, is pretty much a TV version of ‘Jurassic Park’ minus Jeff Goldblum. Bringing time-travel, science and dinosaurs together for an hour each episode is like mixing mentos and coke; awesome while it lasts. Centering the series on a family part of the journey to restart the human population is going to be some worthwhile television, something everyone was going to be able to watch in May. Well, hate to piss in the primordial soup and call it lemonade, but it looks like you’ll be waiting a few extra months before you get another “Dinosaur eating a person hiding in an outhouse” moment.
Welcome to Terra Nova ($14.95 for children)
Starring Jason O’Mara, Stephen Lang and Shelley Conn; focusing on the Shannon family as they join the tenth pilgrimage of settlers to Terra Nova, the first human colony on the other side of the temporal doorway. Traveling 85 million years to prehistoric Earth only to learn everything isn’t as ‘Adam & Eve’ as they would like. Doesn’t that sound like a family outing: a campfire, smores, young Billy getting torn apart during story-time. It just screams ‘must see TV’ but sadly the sneak peek that Fox promised for May 23 and 24 is going to be head back a bit. As in your going to have to wait for the two-hour premier in the fall with the rest of the series. Ain’t that about a bitch.
Here’s a sample of Fox’s press release:
Friday, March 11, 2011
NEW EPIC FAMILY ADVENTURE SERIES “TERRA NOVA” TO PREMIERE IN FALL 2011
The new epic family adventure series TERRA NOVA will now launch with its series premiere in fall 2011 on FOX, it was announced today by Kevin Reilly, President of Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company.
“TERRA NOVA is one of the most ambitious television series ever produced,” said Reilly. “The cutting-edge visual effects used to create the world of TERRA NOVA, which is of massive scope and scale, require more time to be realized. This aspect of the series is essential, so we are pushing back the special early preview date to give the visual effects team the time needed for their ground-breaking work.”
“The world of TERRA NOVA is visually stunning on multiple levels, and effects play an enormous part,” said executive producer René Echevarria. “Premiering in the fall will give us the proper time to create a world never before seen on television.”
When each episode costs $4 million your paying for a bit more then streamers and glitter. Having a 7-foot, full-scale animatronic dino at least shows that practical effects are making a come back along with being filmed in exotic locations. Australia must be proud to be filming something that has the creator of ‘ET’ attached to it. Sadly, when you start making a promise to show the first two hours before it even ready you need to do more then say “Our bad, sorry”.
(Article by Nerd Bastards contributor Crystal Halcott)
Pilot scripts have been ordered by the television networks for the Fall 2011 television schedule and thanks to io9, we can get a good look at them in advance! Set your Tivos now if you see anything that pops out at ya. Some of these shows are going to be huge losers, but a few of them look to have promise if they can get the right casting and a good enough script. Those shows are few and far between these days.
Since it seems like every post I write features me bitching about another damned reboot of a series or movie, let’s start with the reboots, shall we? After the jump, because it’s a LOOONG list.
I for one don’t give a shit about all that War Machine casting malarky from the Iron Man films, but some of you desperately lonely fucks get off on this Hollywood hogwash, so it’s my duty as a bastard to gratify your needs. Will rub and tug ya with all the nerd news and funny bits your heart desires, no matter how much of a pointless drivel it may be. It’s what we do.
So, as most of you know, Terrance Howard played Colonel James Rhodes in Iron Man 1. He did a fairly good job. Nerd heads bobbed in approval. However, regardless of his awesome on-screen presence he was mysteriously fired from the franchise. The marvelous Don Cheadle took his place in the sequel. Apparently the fall-out was over some financial disputes. Some claimed Howard was being a Hollywood money whore, while others said Marvel was being a bully. Well, now we have word from Terrance Howard himself on situation.
“Hollywood is a business. You cannot take it personally,” he said when looking back at how he was dropped from the successful Marvel Studios franchise after just the one movie back in 2008. “Iron Man and everything that happened with them taught me to not take anything personally.”
However, the actor is clearly still a little bitter (and perhaps understandable so) about the way in which the whole situation went down, as he details below.
“You put your heart in everything and you do good by people and you don’t have that returned to you. You do a three-picture deal with someone and they come to you after making 700, 800 million dollars and say, ‘We think the second one will be successful with or without you, so instead of the eight million we owe you, we’re going to give you one million and give you a half-hour to make a decision.’
“I just wanted what was in my contract.”
Personally I think that Don Cheadle was much better as Rhodey, but in all fairness, it sounds like Marvel treated Howard pretty badly.Actually, it just shows how racist they are. “You can replaced” basically means “Y’all look a like, nobody will notice”. Shame on you Marvel… shame on you.
In other news, Don Cheadle recently revealed that James “Rhodey” Rhodes will not appear in the upcoming Avengers film but did confirm that a writer has been hired to pen a War Machine spin off film.
“They’re developing it now, they’re working on that. I think they’ve hired a writer, so we’ll see how it goes. It would be a lot of fun,” Cheadle told MTV when approached about a War Machine film.
The Avengers opens May 4, 2012. A War Machine movie, should it go into production, would likely debut sometimes after that.
The Avenger opens May 4th, 2012. A War Machine movie, should it go into production, would like debut sometime after that.
The Avengers opens May 4, 2012. A War Machine movie, should it go into production, would likely debut sometimes after that.