Haven: Both thrilling and funny

Haven is Syfy's safeplace for entertaining troubles.

The past few years I began watching the Syfy television show Haven and am now quite addicted to it. It's based on Stephen King's The Colorado Kid and stars Emily Rose as Audrey Parker. An FBI agent with a unique past to say the least.

Several of the people of Haven are stricken with a supernatural or paranormal affliction called the troubles. It could be as simple as being able to be charismatic to the ability to bring back the dead. Audrey is the only person that is able to ease the troubled and help them maintain control.

Her past is inextricably linked to a woman named Lucy that was around during the kidnapping of the Colorado Kid. Lucy looked exactly like Parker and we find out actually is Parker. Every time the troubled come about Audrey comes to Haven with a different name and a different past and then leaves just as mysteriously as she arrived.

The Syfy Channel is in the middle of the third season and things seem to be coming to a head. There have been many revelations pertaining to Audrey, the Colorado Kid and Haven itself. According to the show, there are only a few weeks left before she leaves again and everyone is trying to figure out how to stop that.

Haven is one of Syfy's most popular shows and I can't see this story arc leaving after only three seasons. My guess is the end of this season will bring about just as many questions as answers. We may finally find out who Audrey Parker really is, but who knows where this will lead.

Arrow doesn't disappoint

Cool superhero without powers

When I first saw that Arrow was going to be a completely new show and not a spin-off of Smallville, I was a little disappointed. In fact, I didn't want the first episode when it aired because of it. Unlike Smallville, Arrow was supposed to be about a superhero without super power.

It's not secret that Oliver Queen as Green Arrow doesn't have super powers and instead uses skills and gadgets like Batman. The series creators have said that they plan staying away from all superpowers...including villains... for as long as possible.

In the several episodes that have aired, Oliver Queen has battled many bad guys, but they've all been perfectly normal just skilled. Deadpool as a masked swordsman and a few others have poked their head, but nothing to say that this is a world where superpowers exist.

I admit that I am now addicted. I love the Oliver Queen character who is much more three dimensional in this as opposed to Smallville. It's got a great cast, great action and so far the plot has kept me hooked. I am interested to see if they plan on having a big bad for season 1 or if the goal is just to gain familiarity with the characters and situations.

Oliver Queen's story has just begun and has become one of the most popular series on the CW and helps lead in Supernatural on Wednesdays. I don't think this one will be going anywhere anytime soon. I can't wait to learn more about what happened to Oliver on the island.

ABC pulls the plug on two highly-touted freshman dramas

The party is over for 'Last Resort' and '666 Park Avenue'

Well, it's November, and that usually means it's time to start mourning the loss of some new TV shows that, for whatever reason, didn't make the cut. Over the weekend, ABC nixed two major new series: Last Resort and 666 Park Avenue. Unfortunately, I watched both, and I'm not surprised with the decision.

ABC isn't the only network that's dumping shows, but so far this season, these were the two biggest to get the ax. Anyone shocked by the news? Are you distraught?

I had really high hopes for Last Resort. I liked the pilot episode, and I loved the cast (especially Andre Braugher and Scott Speedman, aka Hot Ben From Felicity). The premise was interesting and the first few episodes definitely left me wanting more.

That being said, I started to feel like things were getting a bit dull over the past week or two. I also began to fear cancelation, so I pulled back. I've been burned by so many show cancelations in recent years, I try now not to get too attached. Farewell, Last Resort. It was fun while it lasted.

ABC also decided to cancel 666 Park Avenue, a creepy drama set in The Drake, a fictional apartment building on Manhattan's posh Upper East Side. I started watching this one mainly because it aired right after Revenge (a favorite show) and because I adore Terry O'Quinn from his work on Lost.

I feel like this show never really got rolling for me. Secrets began to be revealed only very recently, and I hope if nothing else, we'll find out who O'Quinn's Gavin really is and what's actually happening at The Drake before the show's swan song.

Last Resort and 666 Park Avenue will continue to play out their 13 episodes in coming weeks. I get the feeling that both of these shows could have been great, but I thought that about Pan Am and Flash Forward too, and look where that got me. Fans, are you devastated that 666 Park Avenue and Last Resort are canceled? At least Nashville got picked up for another season.

The Walking Dead: Creep Factor To 10

Hello Guv'nor, You're a Psycho

As the mother of three boys, I can only imagine how I would feel if not only my boys died, but came back as flesh eating zombies. In the recent episode of The Walking Dead, we see the governor brushing the hair of his undead daughter and then part of her scalp rips off she kind of freaks.

 

The episode did a great job of letting us see exactly who the governor is behind that wide smile and pleasant demeanor. Michonne doesn't trust anyone, so she's been on to him since the beginning. So much that she breaks into his office and steals her sword back. While snooping around the back, she finds a pen filed with walkers and proceeds to ice them all.

 

Of course, she's captured and her and the governor have a nice little chat. In the end, she end up leaving without Andrea. Andrea finds out just how barbaric the town is when she see their favorite pastime Fight Club with zombies. The first rule of Zombie Fight Club: No One Bits In Fight Club.

 

Back at the prison, Rick goes batcrap crazy and goes on a one man zombie hunting mission. Apparently, Lori's entire body has been eaten and there's nothing left, but as she guts the zombie he thinks did it, the phone rings.

 

We can only guess who is on the other side. Ok, its probably Lori because he's frickin nuts and it goes along with the comic. Also, how many moms out there had a special feeling seeing Daryl with the baby?

Fringe: Bye Bye Old Peter

The Observor Is Taking Over

We all knew that when the tech was implanted in Peter's head that bad things were going to happen. It's inevitable. You can't put future tech in your head from a bald future seeing species of human and expect it not to screw with you.

 

We saw the good parts in the episode before when he want all Neo on the Observers, saw how they see and then even teleported. In this episode, we saw the consequences of it. The usually emotional Peter seemed far to detached from the beginning.

 

He was using his new found powers t predict the future paths of a group of the Observers. Meanwhile, Walter is beginning to feel like his original self important God complex self and it's scaring him. As the episode goes on, Peter begins to bleed from his ear and has a severe headache. After that, it was all down hill.

 

The emotions drained and he began to talk like them. In the final scenes with Olivia, Peter is talking in the exact cadence of the Observers. It's obvious that he's turning into one and now that Olivia knows can she keep her Peter from being overwhelmed.

 

In the last scene, Peter pulls out a clump of his hair and we know that the transformation is picking up pace. He's still on our side and bent on destroying Windmark, but who knows how long that will last. If the preview from the next episode is any example, it's going to be one hell of a fight.

Review: Dexter - “Chemistry”

Season 7, Episode 7 - Dexter once again makes plenty of bad decisions because of a girl.

Dexter, our beloved serial killer, seems to have a bad habit of making the worst decisions whenever he becomes involved with a girl.  The only exception to that rule (depending on your point of view) would be Luman from season 5.  At least with her he was doing what he does best - hunting down and killing the bad guys.  But given his growing relationship with Hannah, Dex may have bitten off more than he can chew.

 

This time around, Dexter brings us a series of complications revolving mostly around that growing relationship between Dex and Hannah.  Dex has taken to lying to sister, falsifying evidence to protect his new lady and even plotting against those who threaten her well-being.  All this is going on even as Deb lies to LaGuerta in order to protect her brother, compromising her own morals and ideals for family.

Hannah is, for her part, truly a killer of the sort that Dexter normally deals with in very “final” ways.  She poisons whoever gets in her way, including poor Sal Price, the writer who is looking into her connections to the various murders.  To give her credit, she does do it partially in order to protect Dexter, whose blood work fiddling was threatened to be revealed by Price.  Even as she kills off the offender, Dex sneaks into his apartment and removes all traces of his book, ensuring that the pair are protected.

In the meanwhile, Quinn gets himself in more hot water as the Russian mafia attempts to get even more out of him.  Isaak manages to get out of prison because of Quinn’s involvement and pays Dexter a little visit so they can have a chat.  And Deborah begins to fall for Price, a short-lived relationship destined to end in tragedy.  In the end, Deb gets to the breaking point and asks Dex to take care of a certain killer in “his” way, although it’s unlikely that he’ll be able to carry through on the request for personal reasons.

This episode, in conjunction with previous parts of the season, is beginning to show Dexter in a new light.  Instead of the usual story arcs where he tries to understand more about his killer nature and how to deal with it, he’s now transforming into something much darker.  Whether he will recover from this downward spiral or ride it to the bitter end remains to be seen, although I’m guessing that Hannah’s presence in his life isn’t likely to fade away by season’s end.

So far, still the best season of Dexter yet.  The coming week promises more Isaak and a growing schism between Dexter and his sister, especially once she’s found out exactly who he happens to be dating lately.  With more than half the season down, the rest promises to be tense and the endings are unlikely to be happy ones.

Review: Walking Dead - “Say the Word”

Season 3, Episode 5 - Rick goes crazy and The Governor isn’t really a nice guy.

As the latest episode of The Walking Dead begins, poor Rick has gone a little bit mad from the death of his beloved wife, Lori.  While many who watch the show rejoiced when she finally bit the dust, apparently Rick had some sort of feelings for her and is having a few problems dealing with his grief.  So he goes on a zombie-killing rampage, marching his way through the prison and slaughtering all in his path.

 

While the leader is away being crazy, the rest of the gang is left to deal with his newborn baby.  Since there’s no longer a mother and formula isn’t something that prisons regularly stock up on, Daryl and Maggie must make a run into town to find something suitable for the baby to eat.  The rest of the crew hangs back, doing very little in the overall story.  The two prisoners at least have now been accepted into the group, so the party has made up for its two losses with (arguably) two much better replacements.

Meanwhile, in the other side of the story, Andrea and Michonne continue to debate the pros and cons of staying in Woodbury versus leaving safety behind and hitting the road.  Michonne pokes her nose around a bit more, finding out some things about The Governor that he’d no doubt like to keep as secrets.  For his part, he doesn’t just have her killed but instead tries to give her many chances to see his point of view and decide that being a part of the Woodbury community is in the best interests of all involved.

Eventually, however, Michonne chooses to take a walk, leaving Andrea behind to exist in whatever strange world The Governor has constructed.  After the aforementioned exit, Andrea finds her own reasons to have beef with Woodbury, particularly their chief form of recreational entertainment - zombie ring-fighting.

With Michonne running out on a person we already know to be dangerous and willing to kill innocents for his own reasons, we have to wonder at what her fate may become in the next episode.  Will she wander off to live a life on the road?  Unlikely.  It’s far more probable that The Governor will send someone to hunt her down or round her back up, depending on his whims.  Andrea will be forced to deal with the situation she’s gotten herself into without any back-up.  And the prison gang had best just hope for some peace and quiet after such an eventful few days.

Still running strong, the story of The Walking Dead is coming together nicely.  The balance of zombie action and character development is maintained well.  With only three more episodes to go, I have to wonder at where they will leave this one off.  Will the prison group end up in Woodbury, or will there be a confrontation first?  With a new baby, they’ve got to have better access to certain types of facilities and I’m guessing that’s what will be the catalyst to their moving.  Only two-and-a-half more weeks to go!

Anne Hathaway did a great job on 'SNL'

Actress shined in several hilarious skits.

Over the years, I'll admit that I haven't watched Saturday Night Live as much as I used to. I almost always try to DVR the show, and I manage to get through the opening monologue and then all the way to Weekend Update before I give up. Sometimes it's hilarious and sometimes it's a mess.

This past Saturday, Anne Hathaway hosted SNL. I had high hopes, and I wasn't disappointed. One skit in particular is one of the funniest things I've seen in years on the show (aside from Bill Hader's Stefon, my personal favorite).

This was Anne Hathaway's third time hosting Saturday Night Live, and there is a good reason she's brought back so often: She's fantastic. For those of us eagerly awaiting the Christmas Day release of the Les Miserables movie, we were treated to a great "One Day More" featuring Anne and the rest of the SNL cast. Say what you want, but that woman can *really sing.*

If you haven't seen the clips from Anne Hathaway's appearance on Saturday Night Live, EW.com did a very nice wrap up of some of the best skits here. My favorite? Oh, no question: The Homeland skit! I can't emphasize this enough: If you watch Homeland, you have to see Anne Hathaway as CIA Agent Carrie Mathison.

I just watched it again for the umpteenth time and laughed my head off (again). Taran Killam doing Brody's small mouth killed, and props to Bill Hader for a really solid impression of Mandy Patinkin's Saul. Did you watch last weekend's SNL with Anne Hathaway? What did you think? Hit, or total miss?

Does life imitate art? I hope not.

Don't be like Don Draper of "Mad Men"

Does life imitate art? I hope not because we are in the midst of times when there is very little “art” and a whole lot of TV shows. Even some of the supposed best TV shows might not give the best ideas to the American viewers. There are no “real people” depicted on TV.

Take, Dexter, for example. Should we really be admiring a vigilante serial killer just because he is cute? I don’t think so. 

 

Or what about Mad Men? I heard one individual claim with pride that he was known as the Don Draper of the office. Great, that’s exactly what the world needs: more philandering guys who don’t do much real work, drink on the job, and are sexist to their employees. I know women who LOVE this show and seem to believe that they need to pay for expensive parties just like Mad Men

 

Even the reality TV shows give hard examples of what life is like in certain niche audiences. Tots and Tiaras probably represents a very small part of the population, but all the young impressionable girls who watch the show are going to imitate the makeup-wearing, talent-having little girls who are taught to strut across the stage before some kids can even walk. 

 

And what about the Real Housewives shows? They’re great entertainment, but how many real housewives actually live that life? Not the ones I know. 

 

I just read an article which pinpointed the fact that most single women on TV are doctors or have doctorates. Again, this is probably not the largest segment of the single woman population. Imagine you as a single woman are having a bad day. Don’t you think you’ll feel bad if you decide to compare yourself to the single doctors on TV? 

 

And are crime labs run like CSI? I don’t know. It’s a great show, but do we really need one for every single city? I can’t wait for CSI: Des Moines to hit the market. 

 

Are “real people” that boring that the networks and cable shows can’t dedicate some TV time to the real people living their lives in an interesting way? Most of the shows that I’ve seen like this are on the ABC Family Channel. 

 

That’s just what I notice when I skim through the channels. I’m not the kind of person to watch TV constantly, but I might watch more if there were some shows that were as good as Mad Men or the Sopranos, but reflected more of what real American life was like. 

 

What do you think? What are your favorite TV shows? 

 

The most gut wrenching Walking Dead yet

Beloved characters get killed

I've been watching The Walking Dead since the very beginning and you come to expect the occasional tear jerker or shock and awe moment, but the latest episode was enough to make the hardest make crumble into the fetal position.

The group has settled into the prison and there is a sense of safety and they have become to act almost complacent. They assume the place is impenetrable, but as everyone goes out into the yard including a one-legged Virgil and a very pregnant Lori. As Rick watches from between the fences, a group of walkers come up behind Lori and the group.

Lori, Carl and Maggie head back into the prison and Virgil makes it behind a fence. T-Dog doesn't quite make it and gets bitten, but makes it into the prison with Carol. As the walkers descend on them, T-Dog sacrifices himself so Carol can make it past.

Lori meanwhile goes into labor and it comes down to a choice to either let Lori die or the baby. Lori chooses herself and Maggie is forced to give her an impromptu C-section after a tearful goodbye to Carl. Carl flashbacks to the talk her had with his dad back at the farm about how everyone is going to die and he can't be a kid anymore.

The baby survives and Carl walks back to his mom and shoots her in the head to make sure she doesn't come back. Everyone who watched this part was balling their eyes out. Man, I can't wait until next week's show!  

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