Archive for the 'TV' Category

Review, Reaction, Retrospective: GAME OF THRONES Series Finale, “The Iron Throne”

GoT season 8

GoT 8.6 - Tyrion quits.gif - spoilers

Game of Thrones is over. Believe me, I’m as sick of hearing about it as you are. I mostly blame the internet for that, not the show itself. My own passion for this story and these characters has not faded in the slightest. That said, I can’t stand to hear one more thing from every entertainment site, blog, YouTube channel, podcast and blue checkmark on Twitter bitching and moaning about their dissatisfaction with this final season week after week after fucking week. It’s omnipresent. When Barstool Sports, that haven of geek discussion, starts obsessing over every detail of every new episode, you know a shark has been jumped. I’m fed up. I can’t open my laptop, turn on my TV, or check the time on my phone without hearing about somebody’s disappointment with Season 8. Now that the show is over, I can’t wait for the Game of Thrones reaction industry to die the miserable death it deserves.

This is the first pop culture phenomenon where I understood what it meant to truly hate a bandwagon. You see this a lot with bands who hit the big time. “I prefer their earlier work” is the common refrain that’s now basically become a meme. I’ve been watching GoT since the series premiere back in April, 2011 and loved it right away. It began airing right as Entourage was wrapping up and I needed some new HBO in my life. In fact, I was able to dig up the post on this blog where I first reacted to the pilot episode. It’s a one-paragraph quick reaction as part of THIS post, where I was “very interested to see how these characters interweave going forward”, very excited about the potential of R-rated fantasy, and instantly in love with Emilia Clarke.

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I Wish Game of Thrones Would Slow the Hell Down

Benioff Weiss Iron Throne
I was inspired to write this post after reading THIS article at The Ringer by Ben Lindbergh. It’s becoming clear to me that if Game of Thrones delivers an unsatisfactory conclusion, it’ll be because of the hurry they were in to get to the finish line, not because it was executed poorly or the drama wasn’t good. That sucks. But worst of all, it was avoidable.

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My 10 Favorite Game of Thrones Characters

GoT logo.gif

WHICH GAME OF THRONES CHARACTER ARE YOU?!?! Just kidding. You’ll have to go to Facebook to find that out. Spoiler alert, though: you are none of them.

With season 7 of HBO’s Game of Thrones ended and withdrawal setting in, I’ve decided to hop onboard the GoT thought piece/clickbait bandwagon. I’ve delved through the show’s long, long list of characters, old and new, to figure out who I like and relate to most and least. Some of my choices may surprise you, but one of the best aspects of George R.R. Martin‘s world is that its characters are far grayer than in other filmed fiction, and I find things to like about even some of the sleaziest of the bad guys. Game of Thrones has some of the richest, most complex characters you’ll come across in modern fantasy (or fiction of any genre, really), and that made putting this list together a lot of fun.

I realize this post would work much better as a 15-minute YouTube video, but I don’t have the time nor the energy nor the editing software to put that kind of video together. Sorry. You’ll just have to read instead. This post will contain spoilers for the show, but if you haven’t already seen all 67 episodes, you’re probably not reading this anyway. Enjoy!

Note: My rankings are based on the TV show only. As always, click on any photo to see the full-size version.

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The 2017 Biggie Awards (and my Top 10 & Bottom 5 of 2016)

The 28th Annual Biggie Awards

for the love of movies.

Celebrating achievements in film for the year 2016

So 2016 has come and gone. A year I had big hopes for about 15 months ago turned out to be quite a dud in the grand scheme of things. It was even worse than 2015. For the second year in a row, I rated no theatrical release a ‘9’ on IMDb. There were no masterpieces, no all-time greats. There were some really good movies, and I put almost 20 more films on my “Movies I Love” list, but in terms of quality and the ability to stand the test of time, even the second or third-best movies of most past years would have easily won my Best Picture award over this lot.

Lobster Farrell bury
Me waiting for 2016 to be over.

2016 also broke a pretty long streak of spectacular even-numbered years. It was such a mediocre year that it even gave us a Steven Spielberg movie I couldn’t bring myself to watch (The BFG). General cinematic malaise aside, there were, as always, some highlights…

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You Know What I’d Like to See?

I’ll tell you what I’d like to see. A lot of things. But let’s start with these random 25 things, in no particular order. We’ll cover sports, movies, television, politics, current events, and one sexy automobile.

WARNING: Since many of these turned into their own mini-rants, this post is rated R for language.

-I’d like to see the Boston Red Sox win their third World Series in 9 years, with the most likable team since 2004, and have them win this one at home at Fenway Park. What’s that? DONE, DONE, AND DONE? Excellent!

FINAL OUT

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Review: HBO’s GAME CHANGE

HBO debuted its newest original film this past weekend to much hype in the political realm. Game Change is based on journalists John Heilemann & Mark Halperin‘s 2010 book Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime, which, as you can guess, chronicled the behind-the-scenes action of the 2008 presidential election. The film was directed by Jay Roach and adapted by Danny Strong, both of whom were the primary creative forces behind HBO’s 2008 film Recount, about the 2000 election and its aftermath. Part of the reason I was so excited to see Game Change was because I thought Recount was absolutely fantastic, and perhaps most importantly, I found that movie to be very fair to both Bush and Gore‘s sides of that very polarizing story. Sarah Palin is an equally divisive figure, and telling the story of her rise to prominence honestly but accurately was to be a tricky road to navigate.

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SUNDAY SUNDAY SUNDAY #3

I really want In Time to be grrrrrreat!

In Time (in theaters this Friday, October 28!) is a film I’m very much looking forward to seeing. Have been for a while. The more footage I see from it, the more I think this has the potential to be a really, really good movie. I absolutely love the concept of time replacing money and how in the future, you stop aging at 25 (it’ll be interesting to see how they explain that). I’m a huge fan of writer/director Andrew Niccol, for two big reasons; he wrote/directed 2005’s Lord of War, a highly underrated and underseen film that is some of Nicolas Cage‘s best work, but perhaps most of all because he wrote The Truman Show, one of my all-time favorite movies and one of the most original story ideas of the last 25 years (not to mention Jim Carrey‘s best performance).

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