Sunday, April 22, 2012


Mercifully, I finished watching Smallville recently  The Wife and I really enjoyed the first season, as well as...probably season two and three.  After that, it became pretty repetitive -- main villain of the season, Lana/Chloe in trouble, Clark struggles with his heritage, etc.  The quality just kind of dwindled as the seasons went on.  We watched every episode of seasons 1-8 and then took a break from watching it.  A long break.

I finally put Season 9 in the Netflix queue a month or two ago.  After watching the season premiere, I felt comfortable enough to skip the majority of season 9, which had General Zod as the main antagonist.  I glanced over the episode descriptions on Wikipedia and just wanted to get it over with.

Season 10 went pretty much the same way.  Darkseid was the villain of the season - a far more interesting choice but I just couldn't bear to watch an entire season of the show.  I watched the S10 premiere, one episode 'cause it had Deathstroke in it and then the two hour finale which also felt like a chore.  I have to say, though, the final 5-8 minutes of the show were really well done.  Spoiler alert!  They bring in some of the classic music from the Superman films, and after 218 episodes, Clark finally embraces his human upbringing and Kryptonian heritage and puts on the freakin' Superman outfit.

Looking back on it, I think what wore me out on the show was not only the repetitive plots but it was more the waiting.  We know where the story is going to end up.  Going into it, we know Clark Kent is going to one day throw on a cape and be a hero.  So when he struggles to find a job at the Daily Planet, or his powers are almost taken away by gold kryptonite, we know it doesn't matter.  We still know he will become Superman.  I know this series was meant to be more about the journey but it felt like so many episodes were just filler.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Colony

I first wrote about a reality TV show called The Colony in 2009.  Thanks to my good friend Netflix, I watched both seasons  I must admit that I skipped around a bit on Season One but watched all of Two  Beware, there will be spoilers ahead!

As I said in my first post, the deck for Season One was incredibly stacked because the cast had a doctor, nurse, aerospace engineer, scientist, etc.  Season One took place at an abandoned warehouse in downtown Los Angeles and for the most part, the colonists did a good job.  They set up a water filtration system, traded goods, had decent security, used solar panels and kept a goat and two chickens.  They got harassed once in a while by "marauders" and they lost one of their own while out on a scavenging mission.  Season One ends with them receiving coordinates to a save haven, finishing their escape vehicle, and driving off down the Los Angeles "river."  Once they are outside and safe, one survivor abandons the group to return because he wants to be there to rebuild his city, Los Angeles.  Quite cheesy but whatever, dude.

Season Two takes place in Chalmette, Louisiana in an abandoned neighborhood/compound area.  There are a few abandoned shops and dwellings they can scavenge for supplies and resources.  They also have a river and bayou nearby.  They did a more diverse job with casting in this one - yes, there are contractors and carpenters, but they're also a model, a logger and an anatomy teacher.  Also, while Season One seemed to go along nicely (for the most part), the colonists in Season Two get their asses handed to them.  Regularly!

There is an rival encampment nearby with about 20-30 people who show up to steal supplies, antagonize and at one point, kidnap someone.  There is a real lack of security given the large area they are living in.  They finally manage to stand up to the intruders and eventually steal some stuff back.  Towards the end of the season, they repair a boat, paddle out onto the bayou and find an abandoned, isolated house where they can live off of the land.  They work towards getting a bigger boat repaired and making their escape away from the invaders.

Everything seems to work out nicely until they show up at the isolated house...well, the previously isolated house and see a bunch of people standing on the dock.  The series just ends right there on a really weird note.  I looked online and saw fans were furious at the vague/unhappy ending but hello!  It's a reality show about surviving after a global outbreak!!  It didn't end all upbeat and happy, but I think it kind of sends the message that, in this situation, there will always be something to fight against.  Yes, a helicopter air dropped some supplies but then the invaders showed up to get some too.  Yes, you found a new place to live but someone else beat you to it.  It will be a constant struggle.

So anyway, there you go.  Season Three is currently casting and I can't wait to see some more post apocalyptic cheese.  Thank you Discover Channel!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Squirrel Seasoning

The Wife has spent some time gathering some lovely plants and making something of a garden on our patio.  The problem is we have squirrels in our complex.  A lot of squirrels.  And these little sons-of-bitches seem to like digging up the potted plants and eating roots and generally making a mess of things.  I looked up some home remedies online to keep the squirrels away and found one suggestion that said to sprinkle chili powder, cumin and/or cinnamon around the plants.  Apparently the squirrels don't like hot spices.  Another suggestion said to boil a mix of onions, jalapeno and habanero peppers into a liquid and watering the plants with that.  I don't want to spend time cooking for these little bastards so I opted to sprinkle the dry spices on the plants.

So I did that and was enjoying watching Game of Thrones with The Wife when I saw movement on the patio.  I darted off the couch and saw a fat squirrel digging up one of the plants.  That fucker!!!  Guess I'll have to try some other solution to get rid of these guys.

It made me wonder, though, if the spices didn't do anything to repel them, perhaps the squirrels are the ones posting "homemade remedies" online so we are seasoning our plants for them.  "Yeah, yeah, we hate it when you sprinkle a little mixture of salt, tarragon, crushed garlic and cumin on your plants."  Munch munch munch.   Those sneaky pricks.

Monday, March 26, 2012


I watched a documentary called Stolen last night, which was about the 1990 theft of several paintings from the Gardner Museum in Boston, MA.  I first heard about this heist a few years ago when I came across a book about it.  Sadly, I never got around to reading the book but was excited to see this documentary pop up in our Netflix recommendations.

Sadly, I watched Stolen and was terribly disappointed with it.  It claims to shed some light on this case but instead, it wanders around aimlessly.  Lots of title cards and "artistic" shots that don't make any sense.  And then there's one part where they talk about Girl with the Pearl Earring, a painting which isn't even in the museum, and talk to the author of the book Girl with the Pearl Earring.  Towards the end of the movie, they talk to a security guard about why he took a job at the museum.  I looked at how much time was left at this point and there were like 5 minutes remaining.  It was at this point I realized I'd wasted 84 minutes of my life.  Hopefully I can find that book again because the actual heist and investigation sounds interesting but holy crap, I hope Rebecca Dreyfus has figured out how to make an interesting documentary in the years since.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Bad TV

We were talking about '80s TV shows during lunch at work the other day and I brought up the show Out of This World.  If you're not familiar with the concept, it was a sitcom about a teenage girl who is not only half-alien, but inherited powers from her alien father.  She lives with her human mother in Carmel and can do cool shit like freeze time.  Oh, and she also talks her alien Dad via a glowing diamond in her bedroom.

In this modern age, I can't even imagine a show like this making it to the pitch room.

"Hey, Marcus, whattaya got?"

"Well see, this alien crash landed on earth and fathered a daughter who goes on to..."

"Um, Marcus?"


"You are aware there are super high quality shows on television these days like Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad, and you're proposing a sitcom about a half alien teenager.  Get out."

I just can't imagine shows like ALF, Small Wonder or My Two Dads getting made these days.  Ah, the '80s.

Trivia side note!  The voice of the father was provided by Burt Reynolds.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Battlestar Galactica

As mentioned in my previous post, we watched the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica series.  I was really looking forward to it since I'd heard from a few friends and media sources that it was really good.  The first few episodes were really well done and I thought to myself, "Wow, everything they said was true!"  Then...75 episodes flew by and the show definitely hads its ups and downs.

I started losing interest towards the end of the run but had to hold out to see how it all wrapped up.  As we started the finale, I remember thinking to myself, "Hmm, that would be kinda dumb if the series ended like this" and sadly, that's exactly how the series ended.  Bah, so sadly predictable and anti-climactic!

A while after we finished it, I watched Battlestar Galactica: The Plan which kind of condensed and retold the series from the point of the view of the villains.  I read somewhere that The Plan would make you completely rethink the entire series and put everything in a new light, so I was eager for that.  Instead, The Plan had a ton of rehashed footage (somewhat understandable) but it was so boring and uninspired that it, along with the disappointing finale, tainted my view of the entire series.

So, to sum it up, I eagerly put BSG into the Overrated category.  Give the miniseries and maybe first season a watch and just leave it as a good memory in your mind.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Too Much TV

I decided to take a look back at a previous blog post I'd written about what TV shows I want to watch to see if I've made any progress.  I'm currently on Season 5 of Curb Your Enthusiasm and am enjoying the hell out of that show.  We've plowed through all of the seasons of Dexter, Breaking Bad and 30 Rock that are available to us on Netflix.  All of those are excellent shows, by the way.

I have one season left of Smallville left to watch, of which I cut back the Netflix queue to get only 4 out of the 6 discs.  That show has gone incredibly downhill and I can't wait to finish it off.  I'm tempted to just get the first and last disc and cut out all the rest.  But alas, there's a Booster Gold episode!  How can I pass that up?

I watched the first 2 episodes of Treme and gave up in the middle of the third.  Just couldn't get into it so that one got booted from my list.  Similarly, I tried and gave up on Mad Men and Justice League.

We're 4 episodes in to Game of Thrones and it seems good so far.  The Wife is more into that show than I am at the moment but it's enjoyable.  I also just started Damages and am really loving how that show's storyline jumps around.

I finally finished watching FlashForward and really liked that one.  I wish they'd made more than one season of it but alas.  I think I would have enjoyed it more if I watched it in a shorter amount of time.  Not that the storyline is ultra confusing, I just feel like I would have enjoyed it more if I watched it all in the span of 2 months instead of the 6-8 months it took me to watch it.  We also finished Battlestar Galactica, although I think that one might require a separate blog post.

So, the trimmed down list of shows I need to watch / catch up on looks like this --

The 4400
Eastbound and Down
Friday Night Lights
Freaks and Geeks
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Rescue Me
Samurai Jack
The Shield
The Sopranos
Terra Nova
The West Wing

The Wire

Ahhhhh!  Too much TV!