A Cup of Salt Tears August 27, 2014 A Cup of Salt Tears Isabel Yap They say women in grief are beautiful. Strongest Conjuration August 26, 2014 Strongest Conjuration Skyler White A story of the Incrementalists. Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land August 20, 2014 Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land Ruthanna Emrys Stories of Tikanu. Hero of the Five Points August 19, 2014 Hero of the Five Points Alan Gratz A League of Seven story.
From The Blog
August 30, 2014
Locked in a Room With His Greatest Enemy. Doctor Who: “Into the Dalek”
Chris Lough
August 25, 2014
Animorphs: Why the Series Rocked and Why You Should Still Care
Sam Riedel
August 20, 2014
The Welcome Return of the Impatient and Cantankerous Doctor Who
David Cranmer
August 19, 2014
The Wheel of Time Reread Redux: Introductory Post
Leigh Butler
August 19, 2014
Whatever Happened to the Boy Wonder? Bring Robin Back to the Big Screen
Emily Asher-Perrin
Showing posts tagged: television click to see more stuff tagged with television
Sat
Aug 30 2014 10:00pm

Locked in a Room With His Greatest Enemy. Doctor Who: “Into the Dalek”

Doctor Who Into the Dalek Peter Capaldi

If you want to find out who the Doctor really is then lock him in a room with his greatest enemy: the Daleks.

This has been one of the few truths of Doctor Who as a show, even more so after its return in 2005 and the introduction of the Time War plot establishing that the Doctor sacrificed his own people to rid the universe of the Daleks once and for all. As an unyielding trickster, the Doctor thrills in subverting the universe’s expectations and inspiring others to do the same. This trait is embedded deeply in the Doctor’s fictional history. He’s not going to bow to the constraints of Time Lord society, he’s going to steal a TARDIS and get the hell out of there. He’s not [whatever his Gallifreyan birthname is], he’s the Doctor. Just the Doctor. And you can’t force him do anything he doesn’t want to do.

Unless you’re the Daleks.

[Doctor Who: “Into the Dalek.” Spoilers ahead.]

Fri
Aug 29 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “You Are Cordially Invited”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited“You Are Cordially Invited...”
Written by Ronald D. Moore
Directed by David Livingston
Season 6, Episode 7
Production number 40510-531
Original air date: November 10, 1997
Stardate: 51247.5

Station log: DS9 is now the headquarters for the Ninth Fleet. Sisko and Kira are both happy to have things getting back to something like normal. Martok is less happy about being put in charge of the Ninth Fleet, as it means a crapton more paperwork.

Alexander is being transferred to the Ya’Vang, along with most of the Rotarran crew. Dax suggests to Worf that they get married right away on the station, instead of waiting until the end of the war to have it on Qo’noS. Worf agrees, and asks Alexander to be his sword-bearer.

[We don’t embrace other cultures, we conquer them!]

Tue
Aug 26 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Sacrifice of Angels”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Sacrifice of Angels“Sacrifice of Angels”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by Allan Kroeker
Season 6, Episode 6
Production number 40510-530
Original air date: November 3, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: We get a summary of “Favor the Bold,” and then we see the two fleets facing off. Sisko has the small attack ships target the Cardassian vessels and then run, hoping that the Cardassians will get angry enough to break formation to go after them. (The Jem’Hadar are too disciplined to do that.) That might open a hole they can punch through to get to the station.

And then the battle is joined. On the station, Dukat, Damar, the female changeling, and Weyoun consult in Ops. Dukat figures out Sisko’s strategy, and plans to let it work up to a point, pretending to open a hole and then closing it on him before he can get through.

[Cannon to the right of them, / Cannon to the left of them, / Cannon in front of them / Volley’d and thunder’d.]

Mon
Aug 25 2014 1:00pm

The Legend of Korra Season Finale: “Enter the Void” and “Venom of the Red Lotus”

Avatar The Legend of Korra

So you want a big, two-part, smash ’em up finale? The Legend of Korra delivers and still leaves enough room for a bittersweet not-with-a-bang-but-with-a-whimper capstone. I’m left thoughtful in the wake of everything that happens; in a lot of ways, this feels like the spiritual sequel to the end of Book Two in Avatar: the Last Airbender, and the preponderance of crystal and gurus makes me think that’s quite intentional. As the same time, these episodes intensely channel the series finale of “Sozin’s Comet,” but with the clever conceit of a role reversal. Here the nimble, evasive airbender is the villain, and the one soaring around on jets of flame is the Avatar.

Book Three of The Legend of Korra has been great, not just in comparison to the first two seasons but on its own, and it concludes here. It’ll all end in tears, but what kind of tears?

[Read More]

Mon
Aug 25 2014 10:00am

Not with a Bang: True Blood’s Powerfully Unsexy Series Finale

True Blood Thank You

Leave it to True Blood to figure out one last stake to twist into the hearts of its diminished audience. Will Sookie and Bill be together forever? Will Eric get naked one last time? Will we see some characters get a little closure? Will the show go completely off the rails and end up with Sookie becoming president of a new, vampiric, world order?

Nope!

I mean, this was once an Alan Ball show and he was responsible for the best series finale ever—Six Feet Under. But Ball is long gone. And while we didn’t go into full-on Dexter levels of lunacy or TV-punching rage like Lost or Battlestar Galactica, True Blood’s finale was definitely the most flaccid sixty-five minutes of TV in some time. Because, you know, if an excellent series finale is supposed to contain the show’s mini-thesis, True Blood’s running theme was most certainly ham-fisted meditations on conventional morality by fully-clothed people, right?

[Put a stake in it, it’s done...]

Sat
Aug 23 2014 10:00pm

Coffee or Chips? Doctor Who: “Deep Breath”

Doctor Who, Deep Breath

Doctor Who is finally back and Capaldi is here! Keep a tight hold on the reigns because “Deep Breath” is not pulling any punches. Let’s talk about it below! Spoilers abound!

[Episode summary and thinky-thoughts!]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Favor the Bold”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Favor the Bold“Favor the Bold”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by Winrich Kolbe
Season 6, Episode 5
Production number 40510-529
Original air date: October 27, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: The Defiant is adrift and venting plasma, with shields at 30% and no weapons. Two Jem’Hadar ships fire on them—and then the Rotarran decloaks and destroys one ship while the Defiant powers up shields and weapons and destroys the other. The decoy worked.

They’re both then recalled to Starbase 375, yet another retreat after an engagement. Dax rants at Sisko about how this constant retreating is killing morale, and they need a big victory. Sisko then announces to Dax that he’s planning one: he’s presenting a plan to Admirals Ross, Sitak, and Coburn to retake Deep Space 9. Ross is on Sisko’s side, but Sitak and Coburn are skeptical. Sitak is concerned about the resistance they’ll face, and Coburn is worried that they’re leaving Earth vulnerable. But Sisko points out that control of the wormhole is too important. The Dominion will defend that territory at all costs.

[Weak eyes, good ears.]

Wed
Aug 20 2014 11:30am

The Welcome Return of the Impatient and Cantankerous Doctor Who

Doctor Who Peter Capaldi

“From the doctor’s own point of view, from his fictional point of view, he’s just the same man and he’s rearranged himself a bit. But he’s the same person looking out of those eyes.”

Those words from Stephen Moffat, lead writer and executive producer of Doctor Who, in a promo interview for the new season of the hit BBC series have me psyched for this latest incarnation of the Doctor—though he’s always “the same man,” we’ll get to see a different slice of his inimitable personality. Now, double that with the actor’s conversation via Metro about what to expect of the Time Lord in the upcoming season:

[Read more]

Tue
Aug 19 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Behind the Lines”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Behind the Lines“Behind the Lines”
Written by Rene Echevarria
Directed by LeVar Burton
Season 6, Episode 4
Production number 40510-528
Original air date: October 20, 1997
Stardate: 51145.3

Station log: Sisko is back on the Defiant, and they’ve been conducting raids on Dominion territory, trying in vain to turn the tide of the war. Every time a power cell from the phaser array wears out, Sisko places it in the mess hall alongside the other exhausted power cells after giving a speech about the character of the crew and how they’ll fight to the end.

Ross then arrives to inform Sisko of new intelligence that explains why the Dominion has had such an advantage: they have a massive sensor array in the Argolis Cluster that can detect ship movements as far as five sectors away. Sisko’s next assignment is to construct a battle plan that will take it out.

[I just shared a bottle of kanar with Damar. Hey, that rhymes!]

Tue
Aug 19 2014 12:00pm

Whatever Happened to the Boy Wonder? Bring Robin Back to the Big Screen

Robin, Dick Grayson, Batman The Animated Series

In 2008, when fans were eager for the final installment of Chris Nolan’s bat trilogy, there was an alleged quote from star Christian Bale, claiming that he would refuse to go to work if Robin showed up in the next film. Of course, he sort of did in the form of Joseph Gordon-Levitt, but that hardly counts when he’s an adult and spends practically all of his time on screen not being Robin.

[But why the shyness where the Boy Wonder is concerned?]

Mon
Aug 18 2014 3:00pm

Is The Legend of Korra’s “The Ultimatum” the End of the Line?

Avatar Legend of Korra Ultimatum

Let’s not everyone freak out at once. Just last episode we talked about the knife edge of doubt that an “all-ages” show like The Legend of Korra has been able to walk when it comes to violence. The Earth Queen’s demise could have been the Earth Queen’s defeat until the burden of context clues pushed it over. Heck, this episode we see a number of seemingly fatal falls turn out to be misdirection, on all sides, so I guess my point is: all we can do is speculate about the ultimate fate of one of our favorite characters.

One thing I’ve said this entire season is that the stakes and the tension are high; it feels like anything can happen. I’m hoping the fallout from this recent turn of events is more of a melancholy sad, with more of an “Appa’s Lost Days” feel to the consequences than what the worst case scenario could be. Enough of all of this vague spoiler-free mummery; let’s talk brass tacks, below the cut.

[Read More]

Mon
Aug 18 2014 10:00am

True Blood Season 7, Episode 9: “Love is to Die”

True Blood Love is to Die

Tonight’s episode of True Blood was the second to last. And I’m not just talking about Ginger.

I’ll be here all week, folks. Until next week, when it is the coffin of this mouldering show is lowered into the ground, never to rise again. We hope. The best I can say is that this week’s episode wasn’t outright offensive like last week’s and that it focused more on the romance than the plot. I like character moments, especially if the character is Jessica, but really, this hour was a whole lot of rehashing things that were already spelled out for us two seasons ago.

So while Jason and Eric suffered through some blue balls, True Blood itself couldn’t even tease us with anything truly fun for the finale.

Spoilers and a supernatural deathpools after the cut...

[Read more...]

Fri
Aug 15 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Sons and Daughters”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Sons and Daughters“Sons and Daughters”
Written by Bradley Thompson & David Weddle
Directed by Jesús Salvador Treviño
Season 6, Episode 3
Production number 40510-526
Original air date: October 16, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: The I.K.S. Rotarran has rescued the away team (and presumably the prisoner Keevan) from the dark-matter nebula and returned to Starbase 375. Bashir and O’Brien are grateful to be off the Klingon ship with its Klingon food and Klingon singing to all hours of the night, while Worf and Dax are grateful for some alone time.

The Rotarran then continues to a rendezvous with the Vor’nak, taking on crew replacements—one of whom is Worf’s son Alexander. Worf had no idea that Alexander had even enlisted. Alexander identifies himself only as Alexander Rozhenko, saying he has no House. So, y’know, obviously some bitterness.

[Or perhaps the son of our illustrious first officer would prefer an Earth beverage? A glass of root beer with a lump of ice cream?]

Thu
Aug 14 2014 11:30am

Peter Capaldi is the Doctor and You Should Be Worried. Doctor Who: “Deep Breath”

Doctor Who Deep Breath Peter Capaldi

By the end of “Deep Breath,” Peter Capaldi’s debut episode as the Doctor, you’re not going to know how to feel about the Doctor anymore. But that’s alright. Sort of. Because neither does he.

Capaldi’s casting as the Doctor made waves when it was announced in August 2013. The actor is a known quantity, utterly unafraid of depicting the rough edges of humanity, and a simultaneously inspired and insane choice for such a beloved character as the Doctor. As viewers we have become accustomed to the frivolity of Matt Smith and David Tennant, and the emergence of Capaldi in the role hinted at a dramatic shift away from Doctor Who’s lighter tone. Perhaps too much of a dramatic shift?

[Non-spoiler review of Doctor Who “Deep Breath”]

Wed
Aug 13 2014 2:00pm

Under the Dome: “Going Home”

Under the Dome Going Home

Since the first season, the people of Chester’s Mill have been suffering from Exposition Syndrome, a terrible disease that forces them to explain things over and over again, even when everyone has just seen these things happen or, in truly acute cases, just as these things are happening right in front of them. Unfortunately, this disease is not fatal, and those suffering from it will never feel the merciful relief of death’s sweet embrace. Instead they will just keep explaining things until Under the Dome is canceled. Like the West African Ebola outbreak, this is a fast-spreading virus but, fortunately, the Dome was lowered over Chester’s Mill to keep it contained.

No longer.

In this episode, the Dome is breached.

[Now no one is safe.]

Tue
Aug 12 2014 5:00pm

Proof That Sherlock and The Princess Bride Share the Same Plot

Sherlock The Princess Bride same plot GIFs always doubt

The adventures of a modern-day sleuth cracking mysteries are the same as a dread pirate avenging his childhood sweetheart? Inconceivable! you might cry. But Tumblr user Jadzia says, Elementary, my dear fan. And she’s got the GIFs to prove it.

[“The battle of wits has begun.”]

Tue
Aug 12 2014 4:00pm

No Kings, No Masters in The Legend of Korra’s “Long Live the Queen”

Avatar Legend of Korra Long Live the Queen

Well, The Legend of Korra continues to be amazing. Like, old-school, top of its game, Avatar the Last Airbender good, that’s what I’m talking about. Zaheer...ah, I’ll sing his praises as this season’s villain enough later on in the post, no need to start now. Asami, sure, I’ve been asking for more Asami and now I’ve got it. Basically at this point I’m starting to get a little cocky—can I just ask for anything and get it? Stock in Cabbage Corporation? I never got that Koh the Face-Stealer cameo I was hoping for from the Book of Air with Amon or from the Book of Spirits’...well, spirits. Maybe I’ll be in luck next week; at this point, anything seems possible. I’m very excited about this show right now, and I really hope the “digital transition” is going well. If there was ever a time to proselytize a show to show the number-crunchers and bean-counters what’s what, it’s now.

[Read More]

Tue
Aug 12 2014 3:30pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Rocks and Shoals”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Rocks and Shoals“Rocks and Shoals"
Written by Ronald D. Moore
Directed by Michael Vejar
Season 6, Episode 2
Production number 40510-527
Original air date: October 6, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log. Sisko and the gang on their commandeered Dominion ship are fired upon by two Dominion ships that have actual Jem’Hadar on them. O’Brien still hasn’t been able to restore main power, but now they have to escape their pursuit. Sisko finds a dark matter nebula nearby, and they head toward it—but then the helm console explodes, injuring Dax. They plunge into the nebula, crashing onto a planet. The Jem’Hadar break off as soon as they enter the nebula, probably realizing that they were going to crash.

However, they’re not the only ones on that world. Another Jem’Hadar regiment crashed on the planet as well. Their Vorta, Keevan, is very badly hurt, their communications equipment is fried, and the First and Second are dead, leaving Third Remata’klan in charge of the Jem’Hadar—though Keevan refuses to promote him to First, as he questioned the Vorta’s orders to enter the nebula in the first place. Fourth Limara’son thinks Remata’klan was right to question Keevan, as it was entering this nebula that led to their crash, but Remata’klan says that the Vorta was correct to upbraid him. Only through obedience will one achieve victory, and victory is life. Cha cha cha.

[Evil must be opposed!]

Tue
Aug 12 2014 1:30pm

Teen Wolf: Dead Pool

Teen Wolf

Previously on Teen Wolf: Malia gets the best lines; Lydia unofficially moves into the lakehouse; Peter takes the crown for smarm; Argent apparently has nothing better to do than hang out with a bunch of high schoolers; Derek and Braeden mix business with pleasure; Kira reminds us all she’ll never be more than a second-tier Allison; Liam growls a lot; Scott and Stiles come up with increasingly awful plans; and Kate continues to be the worst.

[“No one else dies...I’m gonna save everyone.”]

Mon
Aug 11 2014 11:00am

True Blood Season 7, Episode 8: “Almost Home”

True Blood Almost Home

Let’s just say that after this episode, I’ll be happy to dance on True Blood’s grave.

This season started off sloppily, picked up in the middle, and is now careening towards something that looks like an ending, but is more just a crash against misdirected fan service and muddled writing. What’s missing is any kind of emotional resonance. But I could overlook a lot of that in the spirit of recognizing that this show is a shadow of its former self and a weird determination to see how characters I once liked ride off into the sunset.

And then True Blood went from being so-bad-it’s-good to legitimately offensive.

[Tara speaks at last and it’s really upsetting...]