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Friday, July 6, 2012

Louie - Telling Jokes/Set Up

Louie’s youngest daughter is so unintentionally mean to him, haha. She’s so cute though. I love when kids’ jokes make no sense. It’s much better than the ones that DO make sense. We’ve heard Louie talk about his daughters’ jokes on talk shows before, but it’s about time he put that on his own show for people who don’t stay up late enough to watch him get interviewed. Both those little girls do excellent jobs in these roles. We liked the routine of the comedian Louie ate with in this episode. His joke about not having kids was pretty good. Man, stand up must be so hard to do. Louie, why do you still have a motorcycle? Ugh. Those things are fun, but they aren’t for people with kids. Lori was significantly older than the women Louie usually dates, because God forbid a middle-aged man on TV be with a woman his age. Did you see Louie’s friend’s wife? Jeez Louise, she’s hotter than this blogger and he’s 50!

The awkwardness/debate that followed the spontaneous date wasn’t super funny, but it was thoughtful. Well, as thoughtful as something about that topic could be. The woman was technically right, but we were on Louie’s side. It’s hard to do that in a car like that, randomly. She pretty much forced that situation on him. Best line: “Where are the gentlemen?” Oh dear… Louie meets the craziest sluts. Good job, Melissa Leo. We will say one thing for this storyline: we didn’t expect it to go there or end up like that. This wasn’t the best episode of Louie, but it had its moments. We like the way the show gives us two storylines and one is usually sweet (like with his girls) but then the other one is usually super weird.

Episode grade: B

Awkward - Sex, Lies, and the Sanctuary

While you (well, most of you) are young, you may think you have a ton of secrets. Maybe you have one or two BIG ones that your parents would skewer you for if you found out. But you’ll get more as you get older, so we think it’s good to just learn to lay them out and face them now. Why? Because they will all come out eventually, and rather than live in fear of that possibility, it’s nice to take control and ride those secrets to the ground like they’re your bitch. 

We were hoping both Jenna and her mom would come clean by the end of the episode, but they are going to drag out the Matty secret indefinitely, aren’t they? We liked that Jenna was being so icy to her mom. Of course we have to wait a week to see Kevin’s reaction to the letter. The funniest thing this week was Becca the Asian.

Questions/Debate: Do you guys like Val, the guidance counselor vice principal, or do you think she’s annoying and cartoonish? We like her, especially when she's a smaller part of an episode. Matty is being sweet this season. This episode even melted Ern’s hatred of him a little. What’s so offensive about Matty is that he’s terrible to sleep with AND THEN he wouldn’t acknowledge Jenna. It’s like…what good are you then? Well, he's cuter. We guess Jenna enjoyed the fling because she was in love with him. But Jake has been nothing short of perfect during the show's run. 

Jake is more self-assured and nicer than any high school boy should believably be, but this blogger prefers that consistency to Matty's hot-and-cold jellyfishness. We loved the end where Jenna told Jake that she wasn’t in love with “the other guy” anymore. This show can be really nice. We feel like, since Jenna is with Jake now, that Matty is endgame. Like Aidan and Mr. Big. Ugh. Still, this show has improved since it started and season two isn’t dragging anything down.

Episode grade: A

PS - Yes, jellyfishness is a word. Because it should be. 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Amazing Spider Man

The question everyone is asking: Did we really need a reboot of this? Not really, especially since this movie is almost exactly like the 2002 movie, plotwise. It’s like the people who made this movie watched the 2002 one and said, “I want to make this exact movie, only I want to cast, write, and film it better, fixing all the annoying mistakes.” It’s the same story. We’re not really complaining about that, but we see why a lot of other people are.

But movie is better than the one ten years ago because of the leads. They look and act like real teenagers. Andrew Garfield is older than Tobey was when he played Peter Parker, but we feel like he looks 17. Andrew has the angst, awkwardness, arrogance, humor, and sweetness to sell a teenage, imperfect Spiderman. We understand why this kid is too annoying to be popular, even though he’s cute, and yet we like him anyway. 

Emma Stone is Emma Stone, and for that we should all be grateful. She’s smarter and funnier than Dunst’s Mary Jane. In short, these kids can really act. We didn’t like the new Uncle Ben (he kind of annoyed us with his preaching), but Sally Field’s Aunt Mae was a nice change. We also liked Dennis Leary as Gwen’s father. If we are going to have more Spiderman movies, it was good to put Peter back in high school rather than continue with the douche adult Tobey’s Peter turned into. 

We liked the new source of Peter’s webbing, because it’s true to the comics. The emotion felt more real and the action scenes were better, due to technology. We liked that this movie was a little darker and more intense than the 2002 one. The humor was a little more our style. The movie might have been a little too long, but there were some knockout scenes that kept the pacing rolling along fine. In short, it loses points for originality, but boy are Emma and Andrew fun to watch.

Movie grade: B 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Fourth of July!

Since we are Americans, we will be taking a break today to celebrate our own awesomeness.

In other news, Ern has stated to Leeard that for every episode of Breaking Bad Leeard watches, Ern will watch two episodes of Castle. Do y'all think that's a good deal?

Monday, July 2, 2012

Leeard's picks for the TWoP Tubey Awards

Obviously we have very different opinions, though there are more overlaps than we expected. Here are my (correct) choices:

Best Comedy - Community
Most Underrated Show - House of Lies
Most Overrated Show - NCIS
Best Reality Show Host or Judge - Cat Deeley, So You Think You Can Dance. No question about that one.
Worst Reality Show Host or Judge - Christina Milian, The Voice. Maybe not the "worst", just the most useless.
Most Painful Series Cancellation - The Secret Circle. Honestly, I'm still crying about The Chicago Code being unjustly cancelled last year, so it's hard to pick this time around.
Best Season Finale - Castle. I was going to pick TVD, but since Ern already did, I decided to show Castle some love.
Worst Season Finale - How I Met Your Mother
Most Anticipated New Show of the 2012-2013 Season - The Mob Doctor
Worst New Show - Betty White's Off Their Rockers
Worst Returning Show - NCIS
Best Badass - Arya Stark, Game of Thrones
Best Performance by an Inanimate Object - The Jenna List, Awkward.
New Series with the Most Wasted Potential - Terra Nova (though we both agree that Awake should be on that list)
Most Improved Show - 30 Rock
Most Disappointing Season of a Previously Awesome Show - Bones
Favorite Character - Hanna, Pretty Little Liars
Least Favorite Character - Byron, Pretty Little Liars
Best Scene-stealing Supporting Character - Shoshanna, Girls
Best Cancelled 2011-2012 Show - Prime Suspect
Best Late Night Talk Show - The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
Favorite Animated Show - Phineas & Ferb
Best Competitive Reality Show - So You Think You Can Dance (though every year, I agonize over whether to pick SYTYCD or Big Brother)
Best Candid Reality Show - Storage Wars
Worst Candid Reality Show - H8R
Most Annoying Teenage Character - Charlotte, Revenge

Ern's picks for TWOP's Tubey Awards

Leeard's picks will surely differ from mine...

Best Comedy - Parks and Recreation
Most Underrated Show - Louie
Most Overrated Show - How I Met Your Mother
Best Reality Show Host or Judge - Zach Woodlee, The Glee Project
Worst Reality Show Host or Judge - Randy Jackson, American Idol
Most Painful Series Cancellation - The Secret Circle
Best Season Finale - The Vampire Diaries
Worst Season Finale - Dexter
Most Anticipated New Show of the 2012-2013 Season - Revolution
Worst New Show - Work It
Worst Returning Show - The Office
Best Badass - Tyrion Lannister, Game of Thrones (honorable mention to Ron Swanson)
Best Performance by an Inanimate Object - Big Carl the Wine Glass, Cougar Town
New Series with the Most Wasted Potential - Alcatraz (because Awake wasn’t one of the options)
Most Improved Show - New Girl
Most Disappointing Season of a Previously Awesome Show - The Walking Dead
Favorite Character - Jesse Pinkman, Breaking Bad
Least Favorite Character - Ezra, Pretty Little Liars
Best Scene-stealing Supporting Character - Shoshana, Girls
Best Cancelled 2011-2012 Show - Prime Suspect
Best Late Night Talk Show - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Favorite Animated Show - South Park
Best Competitive Reality Show - The Voice
Best Candid Reality Show - Dance Moms
Worst Candid Reality Show - H8R
Most Annoying Teenage Character - Declan, Revenge (I’d have picked Joffrey, but he’s more than annoying. He’s the worst.)

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World

The tragedy of this movie is not the plot where the world is ending, but the fact that it really could have been a good movie. It had some moments that reached for comedic and existential greatness, but then those moments were just completely dropped in favor of a boy-meets-girl, cliché, run-of-the-mill movie that’s so sadly reflective of our time and society that it was like a parody of itself (and our movies). Here’s what I mean: In our culture, we have no higher power and really no purpose besides pleasure. But one higher power remains: the concept of romantic love. If we find this great love that is always good, forever, until we die, then our lives have meaning. It is the ultimate hope, the ultimate truth, and the reason we keep living. Everything is alright if we end up with the right person. Barring that, we should hook up as much as possible because one day we will die anyway (maybe today), and we should gather up all the love possibilities we can. Every song on the radio is about love. Almost every movie has a romantic subplot. The bestselling books are romance.

If we don’t have someone, we are rushing to find someone, wallowing in our loneliness. If we DO have someone, what are we if we are not single and free to find someone else (our truer love)? The story is over and we’re bored. There’s no contentment on either side, because we’ve built romantic love up to be this thing that can save us and make us feel whole. And guess what? It doesn’t. It’s just not big enough. Modernity is obsessed. And you think, “Well, how else is it supposed to be?” Believe it or not, there were cultures that weren’t as driven to find romance. There are cultures that didn’t value it enough. What we’re saying is that just about everything should be in moderation.

So along comes this movie. It’s a movie about what people are doing when they know the world is going to be hit by an asteroid and end in three weeks. The first thirty minutes or so of the movie are brilliant. The humor is dark and rings true. It’s so different from your usual comedy. It’s peering into the abyss and grasping for answers while making us laugh at the same time. We see Connie freaking Britton (Friday Night Lights, American Horror Story). Britta from Community is a bright spot in the movie’s middle, by the way. The movie reflects on the pointlessness of some jobs at the end. You know, if the world were ending, artists would become the most important workers on the planet. You’d want to see a beautiful concert before you died. You wouldn’t need the guy selling insurance.

Some people live in denial that the world is ending, going about their days, like lots of people facing death or its possibility. Some people start partying, getting high, and hooking up. Some people reconnect with their families. Some people (realistically) start rioting and stealing. Some people build a bomb shelter, thinking they can still make it. Some people just end it all early, crazed with lack of purpose. Some of the people in the movie just try to make the best of things, like the two main characters in this movie. But then they fall in love. WHAT?!?! Suffice it to say, we really didn’t like the ending. The movie backed away from the dark humor and hard question and slapped Hallmark Card love onto the ending. Does everything have to be about that? Even a movie about the end of the freaking world?

While the movie started out with black humor, it got slow and sappy in the middle and then, for the most part, it stayed there. It gets worse as it goes along. Also, Steve Carell and Keira Knightly had little chemistry and didn’t make a believable couple. Don’t cry "spoiler" at us for telling you they get together. Have you seen movies before? Also, the movie is super predictable. Now, if it had continued to examine the meaninglessness of life in a funny way, like Fight Club, it would have veered away from formula and achieved greatness. The acting in this movie was good. Keira Knightley doesn’t get enough credit for being able to act. We didn’t like her character at first because she was a) the cliché manic pixie dream girl and b) really stupid in the brain. Why are innocent, naïve, dumb women sexy to people? Wait, don’t answer that. We know. We just don’t have to like it.

Anyway. This one started out interesting and then turned into sludge on us. No one we went with liked the movie and just about everyone was bored. It was just another rom-com and an ineffective one at that.

Movie grade: C-

True Blood - We'll Meet Again

The episode starts. We think, “Man, this episode had better be worth it. A whole hour’s break is quite the sacrifice.” The show needed to start moving forward and changing the game. Did it happen? Either read on or just skip to the last paragraph, haha. Tara was so nasty coming out of the tanning bed. Pam, just let her die! Sookie is having a crisis of conscience and wants to start remembering Gran’s teachings and do the right thing. 

Man, it’s about two seasons too late for that, Sookie. Your character has really lost her way, morally. But hey! She turns herself into the police: Jason. Predictably, Jason doesn’t arrest Sookie. Way to leave your sister in the lurch, Eric. Nora is still screaming and Eric is back. God, Pam’s body is sick. She’s 45. We know it’s an actress’ job to stay thin, but damn. Eric thinks that Pam dug up Russell and doesn’t trust her. Pam is hurt and we feel for her, mostly because we know how loyal she is to Eric. And we love her. We can’t believe Andy excused the judge’s son’s ticket! Just when we were starting to like him a little…

Sookie is getting judged hard for what she did to Tara, but Alcide is the one taking all the heat for what happened to Debbie. Tara’s right, there will always be someone willing to take a bullet for Sookie, even if it’s her car. Demon Lafayette is after her, and we love that development, because at least it’s something interesting. We got to see a little of what happened to Terry in Iraq, and so far, it's not nearly disturbing enough. Sookie is becoming an alcoholic, which is JUST what this show needs. Jessica is officially our favorite character, which is crazy, because when she first showed up, we wanted her gone. Way to do something useful, girl. She brainwashed Andy into closing the Debbie Pelt case. 

We like seeing Pam's maternal side toward Tara and Eric's fatherly side toward Pam. Releasing her was one of maybe ten kind things Eric has ever done on this show. We can't wait to see Pam be her own boss now. Bill reveals that he's proud of Jessica (or at least the work he's done with her). Nora finally cracks, telling the Authorities the identity of that leader of that extremist group trying to bring them down. Fortunately, she secures Salome's blood oath to spare Eric and Bill. Meanwhile, Sookie continues to fall apart without her two men. It's pretty funny. Ern likes to change song lyrics while singing along too. Then Alcide showed up. Yesssssssssssss. 

The Little Boy authority member meets the true death when a video surfaces of him feeding on humans. He's really dead, because he turned into sludge. That's the new rule for this show: if they aren't sludge, they are coming back. We actually felt bad for Tara when Pam made her kill a woman. That's devastating. Jason, Andy, and the Judge get taken to a Moulin-Rouge-y dance club by fairies. Okay. Jason is going to be Harry Potter now, since he finds out that vampires killed his parents. Okay. The Terry quest is getting interesting. Please let the Terry thing involve zombies, show. Sam's old shifter friends turn up dead.

Alcide and Sookie. FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY. We actually didn't think this was ever going to happen. We knew Eric/Sookie would happen, but this was more surprising, so it was more satisfying than that hookup. But where was our gratuitous sex scene? The one time we want it, show, and you deprive us? Ugh. To make things juicier, Bill and Eric get to see it through a window, and Bill decides to use Sookie as bait for Alcide. Things just got real. We don't know where things are going from here, but at least now we care. 

Episode grade: B+

Weeds - Messy

The shooter is revealed! And while it’s surprising, we don’t really like it. We loved hearing the original Little Boxes theme at the beginning of the show, but we also hated having to wait so long for the episode to start. The season ended on quite the cliffhanger, what with Nancy getting shot in the head by an unknown sniper. Thank GOD we didn’t have to wait longer than one episode to know the shooter’s identity. It’s DEA Agent Peter Scottson’s son, Tim. When we first saw his face, we were all, “Who?”, but the show did a flashback and let us know that it was the little karate kid all grown up. Shane bit him, remember? We had hoped the shooter would be someone that we actually wanted to see on the show again, like Celia or Esteban back from the dead.

The season is starting out alright. It wasn’t laugh-out-loud funny or clever like this show was back in its best days (seasons one and two), but we liked the scene with the rabbi and hope that character sticks around. The Rabbi Dave scene was the best scene in the episode. The rabbi seems pretty tolerant of other faiths and it's afraid to throw out an f-bomb for a joke. That strikes us as just real, rather than hypocritical. We liked Andy’s assertion that believing in God doesn’t just bring comfort, because God has all his own kind of scary. 

We also like Jill’s daughters and little Stevie. Bringing new, younger, cuter kids to this crazy show is a good idea. Can Jill die and Nancy just adopt all of them? Jill isn’t funny. So yeah, Nancy lived. Tim Scottson isn’t a great shot. The bullet just hit the top. Nancy was annoying in the ambulance, but she’s shut up now. Let’s hope the season has somewhere to go so that the show goes out on a high note.

Episode grade: B-