Better Call Saul is Perfectly Serviceable, and that’s the Problem

The challenge that Better Call Saul came up against when it premiered was how it could create drama even though it’s destination has already been predetermined. We know that Jimmy McGill ultimately becomes Saul Goodman, who develops a reputation as the top “criminal” lawyer in all of Albuquerque and like all criminals, sees his reign come to an end.

Prequels don’t often have the luxury of surprising the audience, so no one is holding their breath hoping that Jimmy has a chance as a legitimate attorney or that he’ll make amends with his brother, Chuck. The question is if the show can keep people invested even if they know where things are going. Better Call Saul is in its third season now, so someone out there is paying attention to what’s happening. Personally, a lot of my interest was riding on whether or not Jimmy would get lucky with Kim. Score one for the guy who looks like Kevin Costner.

And while the pre-Breaking Bad escapes of Slippin’ Jimmy hint at greatness and occasionally even delivers it, there’s just not enough substance to make me forget that I’m watching a prequel. When I’m constantly reminded of what awaits these characters in the future, I find myself wishing that I was watching Breaking Bad instead.

Continue reading

The Girl On The Train and The “Woman As A Villain” Problem

Just the other day I was thinking about the lack of fearful lady antagonists in films and television. Off the top of my head I could think of two females that scared the shit out of me. Annie Wilkes in the Stephen King adapted film Misery and Amy Dunne in the Gillian Flynn adapted film Gone Girl.

By mere coincidence, the strangeness of the absence of the psycho female role came up again as I sat down to watch another book adapted into a movie. This time it was The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins.

This film engaged my attention all the way through. But the ending got me back to my original question. Why does Hollywood fear villainizing female characters?

Continue reading

Survivor Game Changers Episode 2 Preview

In case you haven’t heard, I’m a hardcore Survivor fan. Which means All-Star versions of my favorite show are simultaneously the greatest and worst thing I can imagine. Jeff Varner put it best:

On the immunity challenge, “Yeah that challenge was hell. I was in hell.”

Cuts to Varner confessional, “I am in HEAVEN right now.”

That simple back and forth was a great summation of how I was feeling for the two hour premiere last week.

Best fangirl voice, “OMG SANDRA AND TONY WORKING TOGETHER!!!! I’m in heaven right now!”

Best horror girl voice, “NO! WHY ARE YOU TWO FIGHTING? WINNERS DON’T FIGHT! STOP IT! I’m in hell!”

Yeah…I really get into this stuff.

Take a jump with me and I will take you into the Survivor future and I’ll tell you all about goats, meat shields and killing chickens.

Continue reading

Survivor Game Changers preview

As I slowly sift through all the amazing (and overwhelming) preseason content for Survivor: Game Changers (the 34th season of the popular reality show) I realize something about my fandom. I’m obsessed with this show. It’s my favorite form of entertainment without a doubt. I listen to podcasts and I follow multiple Survivor writers. Which means when they do an All-Star season (only the 4th All-Star in their history) I like to bathe myself in all of the pregame content. Why? Because it is pure fan service for us hardcore fans. We have obsessed about these people for years and years. We know way too much about them. We have replayed their best moves in our minds like a basketball junkie would replay everything Lebron James does. This is like the NBA All-Star game and the Pro Bowl all in one, except with a major difference, these players care about this game. This game will change some of their lives and legacies.

And to be honest, these All-Star type seasons are best when you know every detail about the players. That’s because there is a high sense of surrealism to the idea that a person from Season 2 is playing with people from Season 33. It doesn’t make sense, it shouldn’t be happening and we should feel absolutely spoiled that it is. But I can’t help to wonder how a “casual” fan will enjoy a season full of people they either don’t remember or never saw play in the first place. And that’s why I am here today.

I want to take new fans, casual fans and any other type of fan into my world of hardcore fanship. I want to set your plate for why you should be excited for this season. I want to help you differentiate between these players so you can decide who you want to root for without feeling left behind. But I will warn you, there are huge spoilers below. This cast has players from 18 of the 34 seasons including three winners. Then again if you are planning to watch this season you will run into these spoilers anyway. But I wanted to give fair warning.

Take a jump with me for a deep dive into who is playing and my predictions for season 34 of Survivor. Continue reading

Let’s Talk About X-Men: Part 2

Alright peeps. Seeing as Logan is Hugh Jackman’s curtain call as Wolverine, it seemed like a good time to take a look back on the X-Men film series and talk about what we liked and didn’t like. These aren’t reviews, per say. We’re not going to rank these things or analyze the crap out of them. Instead, we’re just going to crack jokes and revel in the fact that Jackman has been playing this character for almost 20 years. That’s pretty damn amazing, whether you like the X-Men or not.

We already traveled back to the early 2000’s and discussed the groundbreaking start to the X-Men movie franchise covering X-Men, X-2, and The Last Stand right here. So make sure to check that out to find out which movie knocked Jesse’s pants off (he still hasn’t found them) and which movie we wish never existed at all (hint, it’s The Last Stand).

Next we are going to whip out our adamantium claws and slash our way into the Wonderful World of Wolverine.

Continue reading

Romo’s Back Could Support Broncos Playoff Run (or it Could Break by August)

Ah, the NFL offseason. Where the rumors are rampant and the desperation even more so. If your team is active in free agency and loves making big splashes, then the start of the league year is like a second Christmas. For us Broncos fans, John Elway may as well be Santa Claus, because he usually delivers an assortment of shiny new toys every March. Except last year, but hey he helped bring us a Super Bowl. How greedy are you people?

Anyway, there is one rumor that keeps coming up that I just can’t ignore. That of course is the prevailing theory that the Broncos are the front-runners to be Tony Romo’s rebound if the Cowboys file for divorce. You never know what will happen with these kinds of relationships, especially in Texas, but it seems likely that Romo and the Cowboys have reached a crossroads. The question of the day is whether or not Romo is even worth pursuing, or if at this point he is just damaged goods.

Let’s be clear on one thing: signing Peyton Manning was as good as punching an annual ticket for a first-round bye, and clearing a path to the Super Bowl. Signing Tony Romo is more like scheduling your annual eye-exam a year in advance, but then that appointment comes around and it’s not that great of a fit for you anymore. You may not have liked that joke very much (stay with me, I’m warming up), but you can at least agree with me when I say that there is a very clear difference between bringing in the Sheriff and bringing in a guy that probably dresses like one.

So here’s what I’m going to do: I’ll gave you three reasons for why signing Tony Romo would be beneficial for the Broncos, in my humble opinion, and three reasons for why it would make me extremely nervous. You with me so far? Okay, let’s do it.

Continue reading

Let’s Talk About X-Men: Part 1

Alright peeps. Seeing as Logan is Hugh Jackman’s curtain call as Wolverine, it seemed like a good time to take a look back on the X-Men film series and talk about what we liked and didn’t like. These aren’t reviews, per say. We’re not going to rank these things or analyze the crap out of them. Instead, we’re just going to crack jokes and revel in the fact that Jackman has been playing this character for almost 20 years. That’s pretty damn amazing, whether you like the X-Men or not.

To kick things off, we’ll discuss all things concerning the original X-Men film trilogy, particularly whether or not Cyclops is as lame now as we thought he was back then (he is) and if these movies have stood the test of time. The first two? Yes. The third one? Well, we’ll get to that.

Continue reading