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Friday, September 28, 2012

Glee- Makeover

By vagueonthehow (Flickr: Darren Criss) [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Instead of running for top 40 songs we already know and own, Glee has songs that actually fit the storyline? Nice. Not that we liked too many of them. The best was A Change Would Do You Good, just because that’s such a fun song. Celebrity Skin sucked because Sam was doing his butt rock impression and Brittany can’t sing. Sorry. It’s sad that Kurt has totally ditched Blaine, but at least it gave Blaine that opportunity to join that cool fantasy-looking nerd club. We want to be in that… Blaine needs to stop getting so many solos though. He’s better in duets.

Fashion is the last thing Kurt should do. Have you seen his clothes? They are the most ridiculous thing on the show, and we all know that’s saying something. Two words: hippo broach. Sarah Jessica Parker is always cool, even in that movie that sucked (I Don’t Know How She Does It.) We didn’t know SJP was going to sing! It was definitely her singing. She’s not great, so it was good that Rachel and Kurt joined in to save her, but it was fun, pleasant and fabulous. We aren’t digging her character because it’s unrealistic that people in New York would be that nice and incompetent, let alone nice and incompetent at Vogue. We kept waiting for Kurt to wake up and realize it was all a dream and that the real world doesn’t just hand you stuff. It was refreshing to see things go well for him though.

Is it possible that Will could get a different job and we could have a different Glee club coach? Please, God, let it be so. That’s all we want for Christmas. That is so necessary. We’re with Sue. Quit, Will. We spotted Kirk from Gilmore Girls briefly. The actor was never what made Kirk great. The writing was. That’s why his career didn’t take off and he has a few lines in a Glee episode. Sam’s impressions are great. More impressions, Sam! Spot on Bush, but we prefer his Connery. The McKinley plot was mostly boring. This was SJP’s episode. Yawn, don’t care about the love triangle with Finn, Rachel, and New Hot Guy. Finn, you dumped her and didn’t speak to her. You could have been dead for all we knew. You have no leg to stand on.

Also, it's no fun to have a makeover on a character/person who already looks great.

Episode grade: C

Grey's Anatomy- Going Going Gone

By angela n. / aon [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
To quote the great movie Mean Girls, this is ass you guys. This is horrifying and way too depressing. It was almost comically depressing, like a farce. Some showrunners just want to watch the world burn.

Things that suck:
  • Cristina left?!! NOOO. Bring her back immediately. (Although it’s nice to see Mr. Feeny and we liked the scene where her boss pointed out that she wasn’t as success on his yardstick. She’ll be back soon.)
  • Mark dying and the show acting like he’s this tragic character and not shallow, comic relief. We’re supposed to cry over this guy? We guess we are. Since we did.
  • Karev doesn’t work there anymore? This is crap! What has this show done to itself in the name of trying to be realistic? It was never realistic before! We liked that! (Yeah, he ended up staying to “replace Robbins,” but by then we were so annoyed with the situation and the skyping that we couldn’t even be happy.)
  • Dr. Wilson is the new George. We still miss George.
  • Arizona’s leg and subsequent funk. She’s our favorite TV lesbian, bar none. She doesn’t deserve this! It took the entire episode for us to know whether she was alive or dead. That is not okay.
  • Nothing is the same except for Bailey still having unrealistic sex with that nurse. Booty Call Bailey? How far the mighty have fallen. A travesty. She used to be the best character. Now, she’s the worst.
  • At least we have April back. Yay? We were all excited that Hunt was going to see Cristina, and then he shows up at April’s dad’s farm.
  • Emo Derek is back. Now with new kicking abilities! Guess who missed him? No one.
  • Of course Alex Karev has survivor’s guilt. Because Alex Karev always needs more guilt.
  • There was no reason for the plane crash.
  • This show is ludicrous.
  • This show is melodramatic.
  • The death rate on this show is ridiculous.
  • We miss everyone who has ever left this show, including Addison. 
A few things we liked were the interns calling Meredith “Medusa,” Callie and Avery being awesome, and the fact that there are already two interns that we remember (Tina Majorino and Wilson the Crier). We were also touched by the scene where Cristina looked at the clock and realized Mark’s time had run out. That reaction was the most touching thing to us. She was so far away, but she still cared about a member of her fractured Seattle Grace family. Sob. 

We’re glad we get to go back in time to the plane crash in the next episode. The last home video…ugh, by then we had given in. Mark’s death is a real tragedy. We know the actor had to leave the show, but couldn’t he have just changed professions or something? Disappeared like Izzie? Poor Sofia. The only way this could have been less enjoyable is if everyone sang tuneless indie music during it or if two platonic friends suddenly had a gross affair in the middle or if Meredith almost died and then lived. F*** you, Shonda Rhimes.

Episode grade: F

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Modern Family- Bringing Up Baby

By Sofia_Vergara_2011.jpg: Kristina K. 1981 derivative work: RanZag [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
Oh, show, we can’t quit you, no matter how obnoxious Lily is, how often Mitch and Cam bicker, how much you misuse Claire, or how repetitive you get. We love Phil, Claire, Manny, and Luke too much. Fortunately, the premiere didn’t make us regret our decision to watch this show weekly over new comedies. It was one of the more touching episodes, and that felt genuine, but it also had good lines and jokes. We’re not talking about Manny’s roasts; we’re talking about the actual funny lines.

It’s Jay’s 65th birthday, and Gloria hasn’t yet told him about the pregnancy. She tells Manny though, and Manny is worried that he’ll have to do all the work. After all, he “self-potty trained.” "I just did not get the appeal of intentionally soiling one's pants. That said, I will admit to missing the kisses on my tummy." Great joke there. Luke further scares Manny by telling Manny that Phil will love the baby more. That was a little too mean to be funny.

Cam and Mitchell are sad about losing the baby, but Lily takes the opportunity to guilt them into buying her a kitten named Larry. At first, Mitchell doesn’t think Cam should fill their child-sized heart holes with a cat. Um, Ern has a child-shaped hole in her heart, and she’s filled it with this. The stuffed animals humping mixed with Cam’s speech was hilarious. We’re glad there can still be jokes after the disappointing news in the finale.  

Haley is hungover after prom, and Claire makes her a “hangover cure.” Ha, loved that. The only scientifically backed hangover cure we’ve ever heard of is a bacon and cheese sandwich. Trust us and suffer no more. Jay has a touching, enthusiastic response to Gloria’s news. Luke says, “Oh, gross, I didn't know Grandpa could still do it." Phil replies, "Don't be disrespectful, Luke. Anyone could do it with Gloria." HAHAHA. We liked the time jump (and hope the show continues from there), but we agree with Claire about the beard. Some guys can pull those off well. We don’t think Phil is one of them. We weren’t digging the spinning camera. It’s time for a new Lily, show. This one is not cute.

Episode grade: A-

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Parenthood- Everything is Not Okay

The short post is due to dumb computer malfunctions. 

We forgot Max had a friend! We love that. Of course, he ruined it with a fit about some vending machine. Is it alright to start hating him? It’s not, is it? Gypsy from Gilmore Girls played Gwen Chambers. We liked her character. Christina needs a friend who has been through this. Young cops can be lame, but you can’t be too nuts over a Zeke plotline where he literally renews his driver’s license. The pride on that guy…seriously. How cute is baby Nora? We like that Ray Romano shot the wedding, but we don’t want him with Sarah. It feels like it’s coming, but we hate it. Did anyone else cry a little? It doesn’t seem like Christina’s cancer is that serious, but if she dies, we’ll cry even more. We like the use of Amber, but where were Joel, Victor, and Julia?

Episode grade: B

New weekly covered shows

Due to us deciding to binge Vegas after season one is finished and us dropping The New Normal, we have added Modern Family, How I Met Your Mother, and The Office to our weekly shows. Modern Family is never going away (see: Emmy wins even in its worst season), How I Met Your Mother is popular and requested on this blog, and The Office premiere was pretty good. Plus, it's the last season and the old showrunner is back, promising to earn viewers' attention again. We'll give them a chance.

Vegas- pilot

By Michaelchiklis.jpg: Albert Domasin from Los Angeles, united states derivative work: Beao (Michaelchiklis.jpg) [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Oh great, is this another CBS procedural? (Yes) Let’s hope it’s more The Good Wife and less CSI. This show loses points for being a CBS show, premiering so quietly, and for not being on Hulu the next morning. The CBS player sucked last year, and we’re in no mood to try it again. We didn’t know this show was set in 1960, but we like that. We like Randy Quaid’s sweet fighting skills. It was also good to see Carrie Ann Moss. Looking good! TV makeup suits her. We like most of the casting choices. The mayor recruits Ralph (Quaid) to be the new sheriff, but he clashes with the local mobster, played by Chiklis. What this pilot needed was a better script.

The characters are alright, as is the setting. The show just didn’t pull us in. We’re going to wait and see if it builds buzz after a few episodes. The pilot was solid and serviceable, but it didn’t stay with us or make us yearn for next week. There was something missing. Maybe pacing? It’s a crime drama playing dress up. That’s fine if you love procedural crime dramas. We usually only love those if it’s Southland or Bones or another show that’s more focused on its characters than its cases. Vegas might turn into something like that, because we can see it really trying to have substance and an overriding story arc where a black hat and a white hat compete for the fate of a city.

So, bottom line, wait and see. We’ll wait until the season is over, see if it gets renewed, binge season one, and then see if we’re sold. We know we'd have trouble trying to get into this if we watched it weekly. 

Episode grade: B-

New Girl- Re-Launch and Katie

By Briana (Breezy) Baldwin ( [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Two New Girls last night! Thank God, because this show has been off the air for far too long. The whole theme song was back in the premiere. We’ve both learned to love it, even though it’s lame that Jess sings her own theme song. The show needs to either keep the whole theme song all the time or shorten it all the time. We’re sick of it coming and going. We vote “keep the whole song.” Jess’s hipster glasses had to go. They were ridiculous. We already know Zooey Deschanel is cool; we don’t need glasses to tell us. We liked the little hat Nick hated though.

Jess gets laid off due to cutbacks. We love Schmidt muttering “Obama” when he heard Jess got laid off. Schmidt’s penis cast is removed (and he throws the smelly thing on the kitchen table in front of the guys). Oh Schmidt, you were robbed of that Emmy. Schmidt has a rebranding party where the theme is “danger,” as Nick predicted. Schmidt hasn’t seen CeCe since he dumped her months ago, but she comes to the party with a date who is way too pasty, pudgy, and normal looking for. This is funny because Schmidt dumped CeCe so that she could date fellow models/because he was insecure. Game of Thrones jokes are the new Lord of the Rings jokes. “There's gotta be an explanation for this, like he's a lord of Winterfell."  Ha.

Jess wants to make animal balloons for the party, but Schmidt decides she should be a shot girl instead. Nick isn’t into the idea, and neither are we. Shot girls are almost universally sad. Nick says she’s the wrong kind of hot for it. “You’re the nurse I want to wake up to after having my stomach pumped. It’s a different kind of hot.” Yayyy, Parker Posey (age 43). While she’s had better recent guest roles, both on The Good Wife and Louie, she did what she could with this brain-damaged, slutty character. Jess jumps on the table and tries to do a sexy dance.

Jess realizes that she isn’t good at anything except being a teacher. Girl, we hear ya. Sometimes you get to a point in life where you have very few marketable skills. You have to do what you’ve been trained for or start at the beginning of a job requiring no skills…like shot girl. Why doesn’t Jess look for another teaching job? Maybe she’s gone from the public school system, but there are private schools looking for good teachers. The party ends with Schmidt trying to wield fire entertainingly and almost burning the bar down. Once again, Winston was underused. This episode was pretty funny, but it wasn’t great.

Then the second episode started and hit it out of the ballpark. Charmaine, Winston’s mother, came with Winston’s sister for a visit. The funny twist is that Charmaine hates Schmidt, who says all the wrong things, tries to act gangster, and wants to sleep with Winston’s beautiful, pro ball-playing sister. It was nice of the show to give Winston a plotline, but he had to share it with Schmidt, cereal scene stealer. Also, Nick and Jess’s plots were the highlight of this great episode. We liked the last scene where Winston’s sister took Schmidt to town in basketball though. After he implied that women’s basketball wasn’t impressive, he deserved it.

Jess goes to a bar and meets three men. The first two are beer delivery men. One, Andy, is cute and normal. The other is Bearclaw, a fat, ugly, weird dude. Jess tells Nick to give Andy her number, but Nick mistakenly gives it to Bearclaw instead, because he find Bearclaw more interesting than “boring” Andy. We have to admit Bearclaw gets points for the bear claw tattoo he gave himself as a child. What a mess! The third guy is Sam, a cute slut looking for a woman he met on the internet named Katie. Jess drunkenly pretends to be Katie and takes Sam home. The sex was good. Jess says, “I left my body, went up to heaven, saw my grandparents, thought it was weird that I saw my grandparents, came back down, became a werewolf, scared some teenagers, came back in my body.”

But the next morning, Jess remembers she’s supposed to be Katie the dancer/possible puppeteer. To their credit, Schmidt and Nick go along with it. Jess gets set for Andy to come over, but Bearclaw appears instead. Jess ditches the smitten Bearclaw to meet Sam in the bar’s bathroom. They are making out and starting to remove their clothes when Bearclaw, Andy, and Nick walk in on them. The next day, Sam comes over to tell Jess he doesn’t care that she lied. He just wants to sleep with women he doesn’t know from work. Jess taking someone else’s blind date was a great idea. We don’t think we’ve ever seen that on TV before. But 48 Creed shows? We don’t care how good the sex is, dump him.

Meanwhile, Nick meets an old man who says he is Nick from the future. The old man knows a lot about Nick, so Nick believes him. The old man tells Nick that Nick is going to hurt Jess one day and should preemptively apologize to her. This is probably a true prophecy, even if the old man ended up playing around in a cardboard box with a tinfoil helmet. We should be worried. Nick…what an idiot. Of course he gave the number to the wrong guy. Is he blind? No one would prefer Bearclaw to Andy. When Cricket the Leaper did his thing, we started convulsing with laughter. Can we have Jess’s hair now?

Re-launch grade: B-
Katie grade: A-

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Revolution- Chained Heat

By Genevieve  Uploaded by MyCanon (Billy Burke) [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

No, this episode wasn’t porn, as the title suggests.

What happened: Miles says that he needs a friend, Nora, if they are going to rescue Danny, so he ditches the group to rescue Nora from a militia prison camp. Charlie goes after him and helps him get Nora back, along with a swanky new rifle. Charlie kills two men in the process. Aaron and Maggie are supposed to meet Miles and Charlie later. Aaron tells Maggie that Ben gave him a necklace and told him to bring it to a woman named Grace, the black woman who has power from last week. Unfortunately, it looks like Grace is in trouble. Someone named Randall is in her house.

At the end of the episode, we see Rachel, Charlie’s mom, is alive and living in General Monroe’s camp. She doesn’t seem to like him much, so she’s probably not allowed to leave. Monroe tells her Ben is dead and he has her son. She tries to stab Monroe with a pen, but he grabs Rachel’s arm and tells her that she is going to tell him what she knows about how to turn the power back on.

What we thought: Does this show remind anyone else of Firefly? We don’t want to overpraise this show too early by saying this, so know that we don’t think this show is anywhere near Firefly’s quality yet. It just reminds us of it, kind of. We said we liked Charlie’s trusting nature and softness last week, but it’s time for her to reel that in. It was annoying us at the beginning of the episode. She and her uncle have a Luke Skywalker/Han Solo relationship, only they need to start being friends soon. This is why we’re glad Miles let Charlie go with him to get Nora. We’re also glad Charlie didn’t really hurt her ankle when she was trapping Nate. She needs to be competent, like all women need to be in order not to be mocked beyond what they deserve for their mistakes.

Of course Nora ended up looking like a model. There’s a reason most lead actresses aren’t as attractive as models. Oh, they are always good looking, but they aren’t perfect. We like actresses with some character in their faces, not those who look the same as every bland, hot girl selling clothes in Vogue. Look at Emma Stone. Pretty, but also character. This show might be barking up the wrong tree with Charlie and Nora, even though it’s plain the producers think the Charlie actress is going to be a star.

It makes sense that the dad didn’t shoot the potential food thief. It explains Charlie’s hesitation in killing. Her mom is a bad ass though. It’s not like that guy wasn’t warned! And he threatened a little girl. Hopefully Charlie proved herself to Miles a little in this episode. So, there’s a resistance and they love American flags. We love Nora’s tattoo. We kind of want one. We knew Rachel was alive. She is probably involved with the resistance in some way too. We like that each episode so far has ended with some kind of twist. This episode took a plot detour to get Nora, but we were fine with it. It wasn’t boring. It was a fine second episode, still setting things up and revealing the main players.

Episode grade: B

Popular Music- 9/25/12

Mumford and Sons- Babel
We’re going to savor this. This is the release of the week. After their last album, there’s no way we’re listening to it all in a day. We just went ahead and bought it. We trust this band and doubt there will be a sophomore slump. If there is, we’ll warn you off of it next week. If you don’t know whether you want this album or not, you must not have heard their first one, Sigh No More. Get it, then decide if you need more. Pay special attention to the lyrics, which are extra good.

Taylor Swift- Being Again, single
One of us is annoyed that We Are Never Getting Back Together was a pop song and think Swift sold out with that one. Man, that song is lame. Catchy though. The other blogger has no problem with the sound and likes the song. With this single, Swift reclaimed her light country sound, so both of us are happy. This is a slow one and it’s not as catchy as the aforementioned single, but it’s sweet (and maybe a little boring?). It’s always nice when Swift doesn’t hand out yet another break up song. This song is nice and sure to please fans, but it doesn’t sound like a hit. Of course, since it’s Taylor Swift, it shot to the top of the charts anyway. It’s time for that album, Taylor. Stop teasing us. And stop making us sob with that Ronan business.
Song grade: B-

No Doubt- Push and Shove
If you want their old sound back (the one from ten years ago and back), look elsewhere. We know lots of people are saying it’s reminiscent of that 80s New Wave sound, but we don’t hear it as much as we did in past albums. This album reflects this beat-driven decade. There’s a ton of synth. It’s party music and pure pop, like usual. We don’t like the first single, Settle Down. It annoys us. Push and Shove, the most popular song on the album, is a little better. It’s got some ska, so it’s at least memorable. We like the verses on Easy, but the chorus falls flat and sounds generic. Gravity sounds radio friendly. We liked Undercover too. There’s a lot of variety here, which is nice. Gwen sounds good. As a whole, this is a solid album, but we don’t think we want any of the tracks on our iPods or mixes.
Album grade: B-

Enrique Iglesias- Finally Found You, single
We’ve already heard this on the radio. It sounds like most things on the radio. There is synth, beat, and autotune. It’s catchy, especially the chorus. It will be great at the clubs, but for personal listens.
Song grade: B+ (for what it is, not because we like it)

Pitbull- Don’t Stop the Party, single
Ugh, no. What is this? Gross. Please stop. We just know it’s going to be in our heads and everywhere else in a month or so.
Song grade: D-

Matthew West- Into the Light
This album is in the “Christian and Gospel” genre. We listen to that genre too, because very occasionally there is something good, like Jennifer Knapp, Jenny and Tyler, Jars of Clay, Jon Foreman. It looks like you’re safe if you stick to the “J’s”, haha. West’s new album sounds a little too Christian, if you know what we mean. That CCM sound is kind of lame. We have a level of respect for Matthew West though. He has good lyrics and he’s had some decent songs for the genre. This album will please fans of Christian radio. That’s not usually us, and this is no exception. If you love most Christian music, you can do a lot worse than this. If most of it makes you groan, you’re not going to want this album.
Album grade: B-

Ciara- Sorry, single
This bored us. It’s nice, she sounds good, and the lyrics are honest for the genre/artist. But we don’t want the song. Sorry, Ciara.
Song grade: D

Tegan and Sara- Closer, single
Whoa, this song is way more pop than we are used to from these two. What happened to the hipster sound? This song shows they are going in a different, catchier, more electronic direction. The song is addictive, we’ll give them that. We wanted to hear it again after it was finished. It’s very upbeat. We think we like it, but we like the old stuff most of the time too.
Song grade: A-

Dragonette- Bodyparts
We know this band from the catchy song Pick Up the Phone, released a few years ago. We liked that song and thought we’d check out this new album. This CD should have been pleasant, catchy, and fun, but we thought it was too overproduced this time. It reminded us of No Doubt’s new CD, and not in a good way. Oh well. At least we have that one song we liked.
Album grade: C

A ton of metal came out this week, if you're into that. We can dig Iron Maiden but not much else. Do you have any favorite releases this week or anything on repeat on your iPods?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Downton Abbey- Series three, episode two

By Alinchik32 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The theme of the season so far seems to be that show, tradition, and style are on their way out. The world is changing after the war, and it’s time to move on from large homes, parties, appearances, and white tie outfits with tails. Poor Violet. Maggie Smith’s reactions were classic in this episode.

It’s time for the show to give us some new romantic tension. Sybil and Mary, the prettiest, best sisters are married, and we want them to stay that way. Of course, we won’t mind a few heated fights between Mary and Matthew, but there needs to be a new budding couple. But who? We can’t say we give a crud about Edith. We can’t believe Robert Grantham didn’t want Edith to marry the old dude, Anthony Strallan. What?!! It’s not like ol’ Plain Face ever had any other prospects. What’s the big deal? Edith already looks like an old lady. (On this show. In real life, the actress looks her age.)

By this point, Thomas just needs to be gone. He doesn’t even add anything juicy. It seems like O’Brien hating him came out of nowhere. We guess she feels guilty about the soap and the miscarriage, and she doesn’t want to have anything to do with sabotage anymore. But is that Thomas’s fault? Did we miss a scene? The poverty storyline needs to lead somewhere good. We’re sick of hearing everyone fight and talk about money. Still, we loved granny and Mary conspiring together. They need to team up more often.

We especially liked Violet trying to get money out of Martha while also trying to hide her obvious disdain for Martha. Throwing a huge party when you are poor in order to get more money seems counterintuitive, but if it works… Well. It didn’t. We liked the twist where everything with the banquet went wrong. We love how direct Martha is, how she knows she’s rich and doesn’t apologize for it, and how she made the party into an indoor picnic.

We love Isobel. She’s such a do-gooder. A home for prostitutes seeking to get out of the life is one of the best things ever. What’s up with that old maid? Is she a prostitute now? Oh no. We’re less proud of Daisy this week, getting all judgmental. We know Daisy has quite the conscience, but Reed is pretty and she goes after what she wants. Both Reed and Cora’s mom are a lot of fun. We loved when Reed said, “I’m an American, Alfred. And this is 1920.” We will be sad if and when she leaves. Reed and Alfred are the only unmarried couple heating up the screens right now.

And Bates. Oh Bates. He’s still on the show and people still care. We have always entertained the thought that Bates might not actually be innocent. It would be way more interesting if he were guilty. Still, let’s not jump to that conclusion so soon. He threatened the other prisoner mostly to protect himself, and it was smart. Some focus surprisingly went to Mrs. Hughes, who might have cancer, but only Mrs. Patmore knows so far. Hopefully something good or entertaining can come out of this, because right now it’s just sad.

This season hasn’t been the Downton we obsessed over near the end of seasons one and two, but we liked it better than the last episode. It was mostly good for its humor. We miss Sybil and her hottie. 

Episode grade: B+

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Re-watching LOST- season three

By [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
A Tale of Two Cities
In flashbacks, Jack becomes obsessed with finding out who Sarah left him for. He decides it’s his father and attacks him at an AA meeting. Sarah bails Jack out of jail and tells him that Christian fell off the wagon. It’s all Jack’s fault. On the island, Sawyer and Kate are kept in old polar bear cages by the Others, and Jack is in a Dharma station called The Hydra. A teenager named Karl is also in a cage, and he tries to escape, using Sawyer as a diversion. They are both caught and Carl is moved. We find out that Ben is the others’ leader, the others have a modern settlement on the island (complete with houses and electricity), and we meet Juliet Burke, a blonde sent to befriend Jack.

This episode’s title is a funny way to start the season because season three is truly “the best of times and the worst of times.” It has some great, legendary LOST episodes, heavy on creepiness, mythology, and jaw droppers. It also has some of the worst episodes and a mostly terrible first part of the season. It was good to start with Jack, Kate, and Sawyer, but what the Others were doing with them wasn’t particularly interesting. It ended up being all about Jack, but couldn’t the writers have come up with a purpose for Sawyer and Kate as well? The opening scene of this episode was incredible, as was the introduction of Juliet. It took a while for us to trust her, and with good reason. She’s one of the most mysterious, complicated female characters on LOST, and we love how the actress portrayed her. The flashback was sad and went a long way toward explaining Jack’s usual behavior. Still, the episode should have had more forward-moving plot because it was a premiere.
Episode grade: B-

The Glass Ballerina
In flashbacks, Sun’s father walks in on Sun having an affair, so he orders Jin to kill the man. Jin beats him up instead (a scene we saw in the first flashback), and Jae kills himself by jumping off a building immediately after, because of the shame. On the island, Ben offers to take Jack home if he goes with Ben’s plan once Ben decides to reveal it. Kate and Sawyer have to smash rocks. Sawyer kisses Kate. Sun, Jin, and Sayid fight on the sailboat until an Other boards and Sun shoots her. The Others steal their boat.

This should have been the third episode. By now, we want to see the aftermath of the hatch imploding, not some boring tripe about how Sun lies to her husband. We know Sun lies to Jin. We were sad that she had an affair. We don’t think it was necessary to their story. All the sailboat events were boring, even Colleen’s shooting. The interesting parts were Jack, Kate, and Sawyer’s scenes, and nothing really happened there anyway. We liked the scene where Ben showed Jack footage of the Red Sox winning the world series to prove that Ben had contact with the outside world. Often, LOST would drag its feet with a dull main plot, but then save the episode with a slamming final scene. This was one of those times.
Episode grade: D+

Further Instructions
In flashbacks, Locke joins a commune, but then he ruins it. On the island, no one died from the hatch imploding, which is nice. Locke and Charlie save Eko from a polar bear, and Hurley finds out that Desmond can see the future. We liked the sweat lodge and the vision. No one is really a fan of the commune flashback, but we didn’t hate it. We thought it went a long way toward characterizing Locke further. He’s a screw up who wants to fit in and have a purpose as well. He wants a family and he wants to not mess things up for everyone, like he always does. Yeah, it’s weird, but we thought the episode’s real disappointment was that the post-hatch danger was a freaking polar bear. It redeemed Charlie a little bit though.
Episode grade: C

Every Man For Himself
In flashbacks, Sawyer cons a fellow inmate to get out of prison (and get some reward money for his daughter he just found out he had). On the island, Ben cons Sawyer into thinking that the Others planted a pacemaker in Sawyer’s heart that might kill him. Colleen (the woman Sun shot) is rushed to Jack and Juliet for surgery, but she’s too far gone and dies. Her husband beats Sawyer up. Kate admits she loves Sawyer. Ben reveals that they are being kept on a separate island, so there is no way Kate and Sawyer can escape by running away. Sorry Sawyer, you bored us. We don’t care about your daughter or your prison deeds. The heart thing we got all flustered over turned out to be a trick. Cute bunnies though, and Evangeline Lilly can sure act.
Episode grade: D

The Cost of Living
In flashbacks, Eko takes over as town priest after Yemi’s death, replacing his brother, and he kills to protect the town’s inhabitants. On the island, Eko tries to defend his actions to the smoke monster, but it just kills him. Juliet tries to get Jack to kill Ben during the spine operation Ben needs. We loved the video Juliet made and the music that accompanied it. Eko’s death was so lame. We hated his speech about how he didn’t sin. Um, yeah, he did. We’re glad the smoke monster ate him. By this time in the series, we didn’t care about him at all, so a flashback was boring and unwelcome. Then he died, making it an even bigger waste of time. We think, overall, the Eko character was pointless because the show was forced to kill his character before his time. They had to let the actor go.
Episode grade: D-

I Do
In flashbacks, Kate marries a cop and tries to live a normal life. She even calls the federal marshal and asks him to leave her alone. After realizing she doesn’t “do taco night,” she confesses everything to her husband, drugs him, and then runs away. On the island, Kate and Sawyer have sex, and Jack sees it. Jack stops Ben’s surgery to give Kate and Sawyer a chance to escape.

We know this episode doesn’t have a good reputation, partly because it was a mid-season cliffhanger that frustrated viewers at the time, but we liked it. We love Nathan Fillion from Firefly, Dr. Horrible, Blast from the Past, and Castle. He was a LOST fan dreaming of being on the show before he was on it. He seems like a really cool guy. His presence alone made this episode for us. He’s such a sci-fi staple that he had to make it on LOST at some point, just so he could be a small part of it. It might have been cool to bring him back to see Kate after she got off the island. Too bad they didn’t. We can’t decide if the sex scene was personal and hot, or disgusting because of where they were and the lack of baths.
Episode grade: B-

Not in Portland
In flashbacks, Juliet is a fertility doctor who is able to impregnate her sister, despite her sister’s cancer. Richard Alpert from the island interviews her for a job with “Mittelos Bioscience,” recruiting her to be an Other. She can’t take the job because her ex husband is a dick, so Richard arranges for him to get hit by a bus. Ethan shows up too. On the island, Alex helps Kate and Sawyer escape, as long as they take Karl with them. Juliet shoots Colleen’s husband, saving Kate and Sawyer. Jack finishes operating on Ben.

This is where the season finally started to pick up some steam. It was about time for a Juliet flashback. The stuff with her sister and her work was endearing and made us like the character where we didn’t before. Not only did this episode bring the heart, it was also SO CREEPY and introduced Richard Alpert. The brainwashing room was also eerie. We liked the “ye olde wookie prisoner” trick, as well as Jack’s surprising successful finish of Ben’s surgery. Finally, the main characters were out of their cages and the show could move forward. Great flashback, great on-island plot. This is what makes a good LOST episode. This was the best episode LOST could have returned from its hiatus with.
Episode grade: B+

Flashes Before Your Eyes
In flashbacks, Desmond remembers what happened to him after the hatch imploded. He was transported through time back to an important day with Penny. It was the day her father told Desmond that Penny was out of Desmond’s league and Desmond broke up with her. On the island, Charlie and Hurley try to get Desmond drunk so that he will tell them why he can see the future. Desmond pounces on Charlie after Charlie calls him a coward. Desmond reveals that Charlie is going to die.

Opinions differ on this episode. Some people think it’s annoying that it’s mostly flashback. We can’t believe some people hate this episode. It’s weird, it’s wild, it’s emotional, it’s exciting, it’s scary, and it gave us Eloise Hawking. Everything that happened in this episode ended up being important later. The time jumping, Charlie’s imminent doom, and the Penny relationship all cropped up. It’s one of the first really nerdy episodes of LOST, and it also redeemed the hatch implosion by showing us that there was actually a crazy consequence. We’d been waiting for that. This is a home run.
Episode grade: A+

Stranger in a Strange Land
In flashbacks, Jack sleeps with a woman in Thailand and she tattoos him. Then some dudes come beat Jack up. On the island, Juliet stands trial for killing a fellow Other, but Jack and Ben save her from the death penalty. Instead, she is marked. Jack and the Others leave to go back to the main island. This is notorious for being the worst episode of LOST. We agree that the flashback was pointless and boring, but the on-island plot wasn’t that bad. We were still entertained. The fact that we enjoyed this episode just goes to show that the worst episodes of LOST are still better than most things in life. We were actually worried for Juliet. There are some decent Kate and Sawyer scenes too. The story behind Jack’s tattoos were a letdown. No one really cared about his tattoos, but if you are going to bring that back story up, it needed to be worth hearing.
Episode grade: F

Tricia Tanaka Is Dead
In flashbacks, Hurley’s dad comes back after being absent from his life. Winning the lottery makes a guy popular… On the island, Kate and Sawyer make it back to camp broken up/fighting. Hurley finds a Dharma van in the jungle and gets it to run. Kate sets out to rescue Jack. A great opening scene (with an expensive explosion) starts off an underwhelming episode about Hurley’s daddy issues. The van stuff was fun and classic Hurley. There’s nothing wrong with a little hope and joy on this show every now and then. The on-island plot fit the show’s most uplifting themes, even if it seemed like a repetitive time-waster coming after a bad episode. We weren’t digging the flashback though. We hate Hurley’s dad and cringe every time he’s onscreen.
Episode grade: B-

Enter 77
In flashbacks, Sayid is kidnapped by the husband of one of his former torture victims. She forgives Sayid and tells her husband to let Sayid go. On the island, Locke, Sayid, Rousseau, and Kate find a Dharma communications station where they meet Mikhail, a Russian other. Locke blows up the station, pissing everyone off. They take Mikhail prisoner and march him into the jungle. At camp, Sawyer loses to Hurley in ping-pong and has to refrain from using nicknames for a week. This is possibly our favorite Sayid flashback. It’s powerful. While it doesn’t amount to much later, it’s a great standalone story. We also meet icky Mikhail, which is exciting. We like him. We also get some information about the Dharma Initiative. The ping-pong contest was adorable. There wasn’t a dull moment in this entry.
Episode grade: A

Par Avion
In flashbacks, Claire meets her father, Christian Shepherd, for the first time. She rejects him. Claire’s mother is in a vegetative state after a car accident in which Claire was driving. On the island, Claire tries to use birds to send messages off the island, and Desmond tries to keep Charlie safe. Locke tests a sonic barrier fence by pushing Mikhail into it, causing him to foam at the mouth and collapse. Sayid, Locke, and Kate cross the fence and make it to the Others’ camp where they see Jack happily playing football. Ugh. This episode. The bird thing was pointless and felt like the writers stalling for time. The flashback is only fun to watch the first time. Claire looks better blonde, but she looks nice with black hair too. The best moment was when Locke “kills” Mikhail, and the last ten seconds were pretty good too. It’s not a bad episode (again, none of them are), but it doesn’t crack the top 80.
Episode grade: D

The Man From Tallahassee
In flashbacks, Locke’s father pushes him out of a window, paralyzing him from the waist down. On the island, Locke, Sayid, and Kate are captured trying to get to Jack. Jack doesn’t need their help, because Ben has agreed to release him and Juliet on the Others’ submarine. Then Locke blows up the submarine, ruining everything. Ben shows Locke that he has Locke’s father here, on the island, locked up in a room. We finally find out how Locke was paralyzed, and the show doesn’t disappoint with that reveal. The flashback is almost painful to watch. The ending was a jaw-dropper, and we like how the show prevented Jack and Juliet from leaving just yet. Exciting, gut-wrenching, and entertaining all the way through.
Episode grade: A

In flashbacks, Nikki and Paulo’s time on the island is detailed, as well as their relationship history. Paulo wants Nikki. Nikki just wants some diamonds they stole. In the present, Charlie tells Sun he kidnapped her. Nikki and Paulo are bitten by a spider that paralyzes people for eight hours. The survivors think the couple is dead and accidentally bury them alive. Man, LOST sure knows how to kill annoying characters. No one liked these two, so the show decided to stall for time by making an excellent standalone episode about greed. We love the sick way it ended and feel like the whole episode was a lot of fun. Best stalling ever.
Episode grade: C

Left Behind
In flashbacks, Kate befriends Cassidy (Sawyer’s lover he conned/Sawyer’s baby momma) and tries to visit her mother, who doesn’t want to see her. On the island, The Others and Locke leave. Kate, Sayid, Jack, and Juliet are left behind. Hurley cons Sawyer into being nice to people. Hurley’s con was the best thing ever. (We’re exaggerating, but still, it was adorable and clever.) Kate and Juliet had good scenes together, and it was good to see that Cassidy wasn’t a huge waste of time since she cropped up again and has a connection to Kate. Not that the flashback was super good. In fact, it was kind of boring, like a lot of Kate episodes are (What Kate Does being the most boring). The on-island action saves it.
Episode grade: C+

One of Us
In flashbacks, we see Juliet’s early days on the island. She is unable to save the pregnant women on the island from mysterious death, but Ben won’t let her go home to be with her sister. On the island, Jack, Kate, Sayid, and Juliet arrive at the main camp, and no one trusts Juliet until she saves Claire from an illness. The illness that turns out to be a ruse concocted by Ben to help his mole, Juliet, win the survivors’ trust.

This is an episode where the on-island action is both misleading and not that interesting, but the flashback intrigues. The Goodwin affair was interesting, but the best part was when Juliet saw footage of her nephew. This is the episode in which we really started to trust Juliet. Yeah, we thought she was a mole by the end of the episode, but we knew her motives. She just wants to go home. As long as what she’s doing gets her closer to home, we can trust her to do it. She’s not a bad person, and she’s not a manipulator.  She’s just desperate, and we feel for her.
Episode grade: B+

In flashbacks, Desmond tries to be a monk, but that doesn’t work out. He meets Penny soon after. On the island, Desmond has flashes that convince him Penny is about to parachute onto the island, but in order for her to be successful, Charlie has to die in the jungle. Desmond leads Charlie, Jin, and Hurley into the jungle, but he is unable to let Charlie die.

The on-island action was better this week. Penny and Desmond’s first meeting wasn’t epic enough to really live up to their great romance. Is everyone on this show Catholic? The monk stuff led to nothing. It just showed us that Desmond has a lot of trouble finding his place in the world, something we knew about him before. It wasn’t creepy or funny or anything. It’s the lamest Desmond episode, but it moves things forward with the arrival of Naomi, and Charlie nearly dying was exciting. We’re glad Desmond couldn’t lead him to his death.
Episode grade: D+

In flashbacks, Sun is blackmailed by Jin’s biological, prostitute mother, and Sun meets Jin’s wonderful father. On the island, Juliet gives Sun a sonogram in the Dharma medical station, confirming that the baby is Jin’s, which is bittersweet because it means Sun might die. Mikhail is alive and helps save Naomi, who reveals that Oceanic 815 was found, but there were no survivors.

The Naomi reveal was a mindf*** we loved. The Sun story was one of the best, sweetest Kwon stories in LOST history. We love Jin’s father and that entire flashback plotline. So, so nice. Finally, we were relieved that the baby was Jin’s. Remember, we didn’t like the adultery anyway. Who freaking does? The episode gets good marks for being so dang heartwarming, as well as showing one of the show’s only good fathers one more time.
Episode grade: A-

The Brig
In flashbacks, Locke is trekking with the Others, and Ben is trying to get Locke to kill his father. In real time, Locke gets Sawyer to go kill his father for him. Turns out, the man from Tallahassee is the original Sawyer. Locke episodes are almost always winners, and this is no exception. The on-island flashbacks and present-day actions were equally enthralling. A prominent Sawyer plotline was closed. We were annoyed that Locke always has someone else do his dirty work, but we understand that he can’t kill his own father. Richard started emerging as a character to watch, separate from Ben’s authority. This one is tragic. And perfect.
Episode grade: A+

The Man Behind the Curtain
In flashbacks, we see Ben as a little boy with a really mean dad who blames him for his wife’s death in childbirth. Ben joins the others, grows up, and kills his dad…along with most of the Dharma Initiative. In the present, Ben takes Locke to meet the Others’ leader, Jacob. After Locke hears Jacob, Ben becomes jealous and shoots Locke, leaving him in a mass grave. Juliet is revealed to be working with Jack against the Others and Ben.

Ben is a liar. He wasn’t born on the island. That wasn’t the episode’s only surprise or revelation. This one answered major questions: What happened to the Dharma Initiative? Who was Roger Workman? Why is Ben such a tool? The stuff with Ben’s childhood crush didn’t amount to anything, but most of the episode was dark, relevant gold. Ben shooting Locke was a shocker worthy of a finale, but we weren’t quite there yet. How freaked out where you during the Jacob cabin scene?!! OMG, we are still freaking out. We were like, “What the hell?” the entire time. Jerk that he is, you can’t hate Ben. He’s just too darn entertaining and complicated. That’s got to be one of the best villains…no, TV history. He’s a small, cold man, but you feel for him. Perfection once again.
Episode grade: A+

Greatest Hits
In flashbacks, Charlie remembers the five greatest moments of his life…his “greatest hits.” On the island, Jack prepares for war with the Others because they are coming to take all the pregnant women. Charlie has to swim to an underwater Dharma station to enable Naomi to contact her boat. That way, the survivors can get off the island. Desmond tells him that he has to die in order for them to be saved. We weren’t Charlie fans throughout the first three seasons, but just before his death, LOST made him our favorite character. The flashbacks worked so well. We cried, we cared, we were impressed. Who knew our hearts would break a little over one of our least favorite LOST characters? We loved his connection with Nor too. By this point, LOST was on a roll. Could the finale deliver? (spoiler: oh, hell yeah)
Episode A+

Through the Looking Glass parts 1 and 2
The survivors beat the Others, with a significant assist from Hurley. Naomi makes contact with her boat, but Locke throws a knife into her back trying to prevent the survivors from leaving. Ben agrees that contacting that boat is a deadly mistake. Charlie has success in the underwater station before finding out that Naomi’s boat wasn’t sent by Penny. He is able to tell Desmond this right before he drowns. Stupid Mikhail kills him (and dies for real this time). In flashforwards, we find out that both Kate and Jack get off the island, but Jack screams, “We have to go back!” We only find out the flashes are of the future in the last scene. HOLY F***!

The twist at the end was possibly LOST’s best, biggest surprise. Everyone was fooled. Everyone was impressed. Everyone was pumped beyond belief for the next season. Who knew the castaways could get off the island and the show would not only still work, it would move into its geekiest seasons yet. Seasons four and five were solid. Just about everyone agrees on that. There were only two bad things about this finale. 1) Charlie shut the door on himself and didn’t have to. Maybe it was a moment of panic that killed him, and he was thinking unselfishly (and irrationally). Still, we don’t think his death was necessary, and the show should have had him die in a more convincing way. 2) Jack’s pubic beard. That was hard to look at. Bleck! The show needed a ballin’ finale, and it delivered, blowing would-be contender for the nerd throne, Heroes, away. Heroes turned out to have only one good season. LOST had six. WIN. This episode made us love TV the way we do today and set a bar for twists that has never been topped.
Episode grade: A+

Books and movies 9/23/12


Premium Rush
This movie was a complete surprise. We hadn’t heard much about it, but Joseph Gordon-Levitt has been making so many fantastic movie choices lately, we had to check it out. This movie was pure fun. It was about bike messengers in New York City. Joseph plays one of the best, Wilee. One of his deliveries becomes dangerous when a cop starts chasing and bullying him to hand over the envelope he’s supposed to ride across town. There are a few twists, good action sequences, funny jokes, and good performances. If you are at the theater looking for something to see, don’t have anything in mind, and don’t know of a good crowd-pleaser that won’t get you in trouble with your group, pick this one.
Movie grade: B+


Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
This story is set in World War II, and it involves a friendship between two women, a pilot and a secret agent resisting the Third Reich. (The afterward of the book explains that this is historically plausible.) Anyway, the book is powerful and emotional, with a good story and characters you’ll care about, as well as lots of fun historical details. The climax and ending didn’t disappoint. The first part is rough, because it has lots of flashbacks that aren't as intense as the real-time storyline and too much airplane talk (the author is a pilot herself). But the second half stays in the present, answers nagging questions, and brings the book to an effective close. So plow through. It’s well-written, smart, and it will appeal to teens and adults. It blows that Sarah’s Key book away, so if you like the subject and setting, go for this one. It deserves all the attention it should (and might) get in the future once people start reading it.
Book grade: B+

Damned by Chuck Palahniuk
The other of Fight Club is back with a book about a 13-year-old, fat daughter of celebrity parents who winds up in Hell, makes friends there, and slowly remembers the details of her death. The first half kind of bummed and grossed us out, but it improved from there. It never sucked us in to where it was an easy read, but we liked it anyway. We liked the witty narrator, and the book had some great things to say about identity. It’s cool that Chuck can write a 13-year-old girl (albeit a brilliant one) and have us believe it. There were a few laughs, and we’ll probably check out the sequel. The book’s ending is its weak point. We hate a cliffhanger in a freaking book.
Book grade: B-

The Many Deaths of the Firefly Brothers by Thomas Mullen
Two bank-robbing brothers die and mysteriously come back to life, evade the police, deal with family issues, worry about/look for their molls, and get into trouble. We’d heard good things about this one, and we were impressed by Mullen’s obvious intelligence. A few lines and themes were really well thought out. Weaknesses include an insanity plot that didn’t really go anywhere, an ending that didn’t answer the book’s central question, and an ending that was open-ended in a lot of ways. The ride to that ending was great though. It was fun, easy to read, well-paced, and twisty. We liked the magic aspect, the relationships in the book, the central characters, the revelations, and the flashbacks, which surprisingly didn’t slow things down too much. Read the first couple of chapters, and if you don’t like the writing or want to know what happens next, don’t read it. If you do, it’s not a waste of time. It has some of the most enjoyable prose we've read in a while.
Book grade: B

Re-watching Gilmore Girls- season three

I [GFDL (, CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or GFDL (], from Wikimedia Commons
Episode 1- Those Lazy-Hazy-Crazy Days
Rory has spent the summer in Washington with Paris preparing to be Chilton’s vice president. Lorelai dreams she is pregnant with Luke’s twins and they are together. Rory thinks it either means that Lorelai loves Luke or she wants to be pregnant with Chris’s baby like Sherry. Paris meets a Princeton student named Jamie, who is cute and wants to date her. When Rory returns to Stars Hollow, she sees Jess making out with another girl, Shane. Rory is jealous, but decides to ignore Jess and focus on Dean. Richard and Emily are upset to hear Lorelai isn’t with Christopher. Lorelai walks out on Friday night dinner and goes to Luke’s diner, where she and Luke make amends.

We liked this premiere, especially seeing Rory jealous of Jess. We also liked Lorelai’s parents reaction at her not being with Christopher. FINALLY Lorelai and Luke are friends again. We hate when they fight so much. We like Paris’s new boyfriend a lot, and we were pretty bummed about how they ended. It’s very Paris, but it’s not what we would like. We have to give this show credit for giving us very realistic relationship endings. Sometimes things just fizzle and one partner disappears. Sometimes there is cheating, insecurity, and a dramatic cut off with lots of closure. Gilmore Girls has all of that. We were so glad that the Luke/Lorelai feud ended. Seeing them flirt and bicker is one of the many highlights of this show, and it sucks when we are robbed of it. It was a good start.
Episode grade: A-

Episode 2- Haunted Leg
Kirk asks Lorelai out, but she turns him down. Rory and Jess fight after Jess accuses Rory of being unfairly jealous. He’s mad that she didn’t contact him while she was in Washington. Christopher comes to Friday night dinner to talk to Lorelai, but Rory, Emily, and Lorelai aren’t having it. They send him away, angry.

Every child of divorce knows how annoying it is when people on one side of the family accuse you of getting all your thoughts from the parent on the other side of the family. When Christopher accused Lorelai of planting anger in Rory in front of his daughter, we cringed. That’s a surefire way to get your kid to know that you don’t respect them and their discernment. It dissolves any trust that was left. Bad move, Chris. We loved the fight and how all the ladies banded together to stand up to Chris though. Kirk brought the hilarity, we loved seeing Jess return Rory’s jealousy, and this episode was just well-written and well-executed.
Episode grade: A

Episode 3- Application Anxiety
Rory realizes that her choice of Harvard essay is cliché and her application may not be up to snuff. Lane looks for band members. Finally, Lane finds her calling. The family Rory and Lorelai visited was incredibly annoying. The rabbit girl who “got off the conveyor belt” was cool and pretty though. There’s not much to say about this one. It was kind of boring. We laughed at Taylor’s soda shop plot though.
Episode grade: C+

Episode 4- One’s Got Class and the Other One Dyes
Lorelai and Luke speak at the local high school about business, but the kids just question Lorelai about being 16 and pregnant. The mothers decide Lorelai is inappropriate and get mad at her. Lane dyes her hair purple, but then she immediately dyes it back before her mother can see. Rory fights with Shane, Jess’s new girlfriend.

We liked the high school plot. All the girls just swooned when Butch Danes took the field. Lorelai is relentless. Poor Lorelai. Mothers really are like that when they get in self-righteous little groups, the harpies. We looooved Lane’s purple hair. Ern really wants purple hair, but thinks it might conflict with her future job as a lawyer. The biggest disappointment of the episode was that Lane dyed it back. We love when Rory gets mean. She’s clever. Shane didn’t really deserve the digs, but we chuckled anyway.
Episode grade: B-

Episode 5- Eight O’Clock at the Oasis
A neighbor has Lorelai water his greenery while he is out of town. Lorelai and Rory are allowed to go into his house, where they discover many board games and the fact that the neighbor has a crazy ex. A sprinkler breaks while Rory fills in for her mom, and Jess has to come fix it. Lorelai goes to an auction and meets a guy (Jon Hamm from Mad Men), and Emily helps Lorelai contact him. They go on a date, and Lorelai decides she hates him, but Emily is concerned about what her social circle will think if Lorelai doesn’t grant the man a second date.

This episode is known for the moment when Rory and Jess about pounce on each other, soaking wet, in the middle of a neighbor’s lawn. These were the best Jess episodes. He wanted her, she wanted him, but both of them were too proud to just go for it. We didn’t like the resolution to the crazy neighbor plot. There was a mean phone call from his ex? And that’s it? He had a lot of board games? Was he necessary? Lorelai dumping Jon Hamm was unrealistic because LOOK AT HIM. We wouldn’t care how boring he was.
Episode grade: B+

Episode 6- Take the Deviled Eggs
Rory and Lorelai go to Sherry’s baby shower. Sherry gives them left-over deviled eggs, and they throw it at Jess’s new car, offended that he should have a new car after he trashed Rory’s. Some people think the girls were too catty in this episode, exaggerating the “crimes” of others. We like their timid aggression. The eggs thing was funny! The baby shower was something out of a horror movie, and we loved it. Very entertaining. Sherry is the worst.
Episode grade: B-

Episode 7- The Shoot Gilmores, Don’t They?
Stars Hollow has its Dance Marathon, and Lorelai really wants to beat four-time champion, Kirk. Jackson and Sookie fight because Jackson wants four kids in four years. Lorelai and Luke think that’s an insane plan, and Jackson doesn’t think it’s their business. Jamie visits Paris and convinces her to get coffee with him. When Lorelai can’t find a male partner for the contest, Rory fills in, and Dean and Jess come to watch. Jess brings Shane. Rory acts jealous and Dean breaks up with Rory. Rory leaves the dance floor, so Lorelai loses. Kirk runs around the room with the trophy held over his head.

This is one of the best Gilmore Girls episodes ever. No one expected Dean to break up with Rory, leaving her not quite over him. It happened in the seventh episode too, not a finale. Rory and Lorelai looked so cute in their dresses. Dave started trying to charm Mrs. Kim. Adorable. Kirk’s victory run had us squealing with laughter. Luke and Lorelai discussed having babies! There wasn’t a bad moment or plotline in the whole episode.
Episode grade: A+

Episode 8- Let the Games Begin
Richard invites Rory to Yale, which angers Lorelai at first, but then she decides to come too. Richard tricks Rory into interviewing with the dean of admissions, and Rory is angry that it was a surprise and she went into it unprepared. Lorelai and Emily are also made, because of all the lying. Rory and Jess start dating, but it’s awkward at first. They get one good kiss in, and then Rory goes to Dean’s house and sits at his window to apologize for how she treated him. She tells Dean that she hopes one day he won’t hate her.

We like that this episode got the Yale stuff in as well as some romantic stuff. We don’t like episodes that are all about Rory’s school. It just gets dull. We know she’s perfect and going to an Ivy League school. We also like that Richard and Rory fought in this episode. They hardly ever do, and it’s realistic and interesting to see it. Lorelai always talks about what a master manipulator Richard is. The show isn’t usually good at showing that, but it is here. We loved Babette’s encouragement to Jess and Rory. We loved Rory’s apology to Dean even more. It was sincere and perfectly worded. Jess, stop smoking.
Episode grade: A-

Episode 9- A Deep-Fried Korean Thanksgiving
Rory and Lorelai are invited to four different Thanksgiving dinners. Lane kisses Dave, her new bandmate, and Kirk gets a cat, with disastrous results. Rory announces that she applied to Yale, and her mother is mad. We loved the subplot with Kirk’s cat. We love most (if not all) Human Kirk plots. We liked having Dave on the show, but we like him better as Seth Cohen and understand why he had to leave. Lane and Dave’s first kiss was even better than Rory’s. The deep frying was great.
Episode grade: B

Episode 10- That’ll Do, Pig
Lorelai coaches Emily on how to deal with Richard’s mean mom. Jamie is Paris’s official boyfriend. Jess won’t go to the Winter Carnival with Rory until Dean invites Rory to go along with him and Clara. We weren’t into Richard’s mom. She was just a dick. But seeing Emily and her daughter on the same side is always a welcome treat. When they are good together, we dig that relationship. We liked Dean trying to befriend Rory into getting her back. We hate Clara. She acts much younger than the actress they picked to play her. She looks 11 and acts four.
Episode grade: B+

Episode 11- I Solemnly Swear
Francie tricks Paris into thinking that Rory is plotting against her regarding Student Council affairs. Lorelai and Sookie go to a lecture about running an inn and learn nothing. Sookie sees an old friend named Joe, who has a crush on her, and has to tell him that she’s married. Lorelai likes Joe’s business partner, Alex. A former maid sues Emily, and Lorelai gives a deposition on the matter. It is not flattering to Emily or helpful to her case, but it is funny.

The deposition was the only thing we liked here. Emily took it well. We don’t think it’s necessary to have Paris and Rory fighting at this point in the series, and Francie isn’t funny. Any plot that focuses too heavily on Sookie isn’t one of our favorites, because that character can get cartoonish. The Alex romance didn’t exactly go anywhere, so this whole episode is kind of a time waster.
Episode grade: C

Episode 12- Lorelai Out of Water
Alex invites Lorelai to go fishing, so Lorelai takes lessons from Luke. Luke is attracted to Taylor Doose’s lawyer, Nicole. Paris and Rory continue to fight until the headmaster shuts them down. Lane is allowed to go to prom, but her mother wants to pick her date. Ugh, Nicole. We guess if they are going to drag Luke/Lorelai out, Luke needs to have a romance sometimes too, but we hate when he dates other girls. We already had to live through Rachel! Lorelai was funny learning to fish, but doesn’t she have the internet to teach her? The best thing about this episode was Lane’s plot.
Episode grade: B-

Episode 13- Dear Emily and Richard
Rory is invited to Sherry’s C-section, but Sherry goes into labor early. Rory is the only one who can make it because Chris is out of town and all Sherry’s friends are busy. Lorelai remembers her own labor. We don’t think the girl playing Lorelai could imitate Lauren Graham. Sorry. She looked like Lorelai, but she wasn’t Lorelai. The flashbacks were interesting at first, but they didn’t work overall. Sherry was annoying, and her friends are unbelievable. It was annoying to see Chris showing up for his other daughter when he is so often absent in Rory’s life. This one isn’t a favorite.
Episode grade: C

Episode 14- Swan Song
Rory accuses Jess of fighting with Dean after Jess comes to Friday night dinner with a black eye. They fight, and Emily scolds Lorelai for letting Rory date Jess. Rory spends the night at her grandparents’ house. Rory tells Lorelai that she might have sex with Jess. Jess tells Luke that he got attacked by a swan down at the lake, and that’s how he got the black eye. Lane and Dave’s bandmates realize the two are hiding something, but they erroneously come to believe it’s Christianity. Jess was funny in this one. A hoodlum’s pride is large, isn’t it? This was one of the few times we see Jess and Luke getting along, being honest with each other, and relating to each other. We like that. Emily handled everything really well. She was cool this week. Nothing was boring.
Episode grade: A

Episode 15- Face-Off
Jess is paling in comparison to Dean as far as plan-making, consideration, and calling. Lorelai makes Rory promise not to stay home and wait by the phone for Jess to call, so Rory goes to a hockey game. She sees Dean there with his new girlfriend, Lindsay. Rory leaves Jess an angry message, but then she finds out that Jess had intended to surprise her with plans, so she makes him promise to delete the message without listening to it. Emily finds Trix kissing a man in a purpose jogging suit, and Trix is embarrassed. Lane and Dave find a fake, Korean boyfriend for Lane.

This episode served to contrast Dean and Jess as boyfriends. We instantly hated Lindsay, even though she never does anything to deserve it in the history of the series. We think Rory should still have let Jess listen to that message. Just because Jess had plans for Rory doesn’t mean she couldn’t use the heads up of WHEN so that she can plan her life. Rory is a busy girl. The Trix stuff dragged the episode down, but it was a winner overall. The hockey stuff was a laugh riot.
Episode grade: A

Episode 16- The Big One
Paris tells Rory that she had sex with Jamie, and Rory tells Paris that she’s still a virgin. Rory and Paris have to give speeches for the school’s bicentennial, which will appear on C-SPAN. Paris snaps on live TV and announces that she has been rejected from Harvard. She blames the distraction of a boyfriend and tells the world that Rory will probably get in, because she’s a virgin. Lorelai and Max meet again. Sookie is pregnant. Rory gets accepted to Harvard, Princeton, and Yale. Wow. The biggest virgin in the world. We liked the end of this episode with all the envelopes. It felt like watching Rory obsess over Harvard all these years paid off for the viewers too. This is one of Paris’s funniest episodes. The actress owned her meltdown scene. We liked Lorelai’s relieved, proud face when Rory told Paris that she hadn’t slept with Dean or Jess.
Episode grade: A

Episode 17- A Tale of Poes and Fire
The Independence Inn catches on fire, so some guests stay at Lorelai’s house while she bunks with Luke and Jess. Lane realizes her fake boyfriend actually likes her and won’t break up with her. Rory realizes that Yale is the best school out of the ones that accepted her. Lorelai gives Rory her blessing to go there. The Lane stuff was the funniest. We like that there was a “plot twist” in the ever-present Rory’s Education storyline where she decides on Yale instead of Harvard. The fire was also a nice surprise, as was Lorelai crashing Luke’s. We can’t believe she told him about her pregnancy dream!
Episode grade: A-

Episode 18- Happy Birthday, Baby.
Rory tells her grandparents about Yale, and they are excited. Rory plans a big birthday bash for Lorelai, which includes a giant pizza. Richard invested money for Lorelai when she was born and gives her $75,000 from the payout for her birthday. Lorelai uses the money to pay her mother back for Chilton. Emily is angered and hurt. Luke is having trouble keeping Jess in school and embarrasses himself in front of Nicole’s parents by ranting about his troubles. The beginning scene was the best. Emily and Richard’s reactions to the Yale news were perfect. The loan repayment plot turned the episode into a bummer, but the giant pizza brought our spirits up just before the credits rolled. We don’t love seeing Emily and Lorelai fight for an hour. Team Lorelai on this one. She was just repaying the loan. Sorry your strings are gone, Emily.
Episode grade: B-

Episode 19- Keg! Max!
Jess won’t be graduating. Rory, Jess, Dean, and Lindsay go to a party where Lane’s band plays. Lane gets drunk, calls her mother, and tells her everything. Rory and Jess go in an upstairs room, where Rory questions him about why he’s acting so weird. Jess tries to have sex with Rory, but when she is surprised, he pushes her away. Rory leaves the room crying, so Dean fights Jess and causes damage to the house where they are guests. Lorelai invites Luke and Nicole to have a romantic night at the inn, but she doesn’t like seeing them together. In this episode, we find out that Lorelai did NOT break up with Max properly. What. A. Witch. The party was eventful, but we were disappointed in Jess. What he did was wrong, even if he was stressed about school and not getting to go to the prom. It was about time Dean and Jess really, physically, went at it. Poor Jess. He’s so frustrating. It’s realistic that Rory and Luke couldn’t fix him, but that doesn’t mean we have to like it.
Episode grade: B+

Episode 20- Say Goodnight, Grace
Jess’s father comes to Stars Hollow to meet Jess. Luke yells at him, and the leaves. Dean asks Lindsay to marry him, and Rory is jealous. Fran Weston dies, so Lorelai and Sookie move in to try to buy her property. Mrs. Kim lets Dave take Lane to the prom. Rory tells Lorelai what happened at the party. Jess refuses to retake his senior year, so Luke kicks Jess out. Jess goes to California to find his father. He sees Rory on the bus and does not tell her where he is going.

We loved Lorelai’s reaction to the kegger in the opening scene. We hate the way the Jess/Rory relationship ended. We know they were trying to make a Jess spin off, but since that didn’t work out, it ended up simply spoiling this show a little. It’s a good thing Jess guest starred a few times after this, but it doesn’t totally make up for the crappiness of this episode’s events. Luke was 100% right to kick Jess out though. That’s all you can do with a kid that age who won’t go to school and won’t accept your help or authority.
Episode grade: B-

Episode 21- Here Comes the Son
Rory is stressed about graduation, and Lorelai doesn’t want to worsen things by telling her daughter that Jess has abandoned her for good. Meanwhile, Jess gets his dad to let him stay with him in Venice Beach. For a penultimate episode, this backdoor pilot for Jess’s show was too much Jess and not enough Gilmore Girls. It’s not like the Jess scenes were bad. They were just another show. We guess it’s nice to see where Jess ended up so we wouldn’t worry about him. At least the Rory footage was significant. You can skip this one though.
Episode grade: C

Episode 22- Those Are Strings, Pinocchio
Rory graduates from Chilton. Lorelai plans to pay for Yale, rather than buy the Dragonfly, but Rory makes a new deal with Richard and Emily. Her grandparents will pay for Yale if Friday night dinners are back on. Lorelai is mad at Rory for going behind her back and taking money with strings on it. Lorelai and Sookie buy the Dragonfly Inn. Rory calls Jess and breaks up with him. Lorelai convinces Luke to go on a cruise with Nicole. Rory and Lorelai prepare for their backpacking trip to Europe. We are so jealous of Rory and Lorelai getting to backpack to Europe. Rory’s graduation speech was sweet, but we hope she didn’t make the entire speech all about herself and her family. That’s not fair to the other graduates listening. We haaate when valedictorians do that. Paris didn’t seem that jealous of Rory’s status. They are really friends. We liked Rory’s call to Jess. Now THAT was the closure we needed two episodes ago.
Episode grade: B