Fear Street Trilogy (1994, 1978, 1666): A Nice Variety of Horror – Netflix Review

R.L. Stine’s more adult series gets a three-film deal and the results are pretty solid.

If you grew up in the 90s, you probably saw Goosebumps books constantly. You might even have watched the television show which managed to last four seasons. It was a big deal for kids. At the same time, R.L. Stine was also releasing a series of books aimed at older kids and young adults called the Fear Street series. The books took place in a town called Shadyside which was cursed due to a family named the Fiers, later the Fears, burning a family called the Goodes at the stake for witchcraft, falsely. Now Shadyside is filled with malicious spirits and killers. The film trilogy follows a similar premise, but focuses more on the serial killers that inhabit Shadyside, dubbing it the murder capital of the US, and explores it through three different time periods.

The 1994 outfit seems similar to Scream. Just saying.

In 1994, a random mall employee seemingly snaps and kills his girlfriend and several other people before being killed. This is considered a normal thing in Shadyside, whereas its neighbor town, Sunnyvale, is filled with success and peace. Deena Johnson (Kiana Madeira) has recently broken up with her closeted girlfriend Sam (Olivia Scott Welch), who has moved to Sunnyvale. Deena’s brother, Josh (Benjamin Flores Jr.) is obsessed with the town’s history and the fact that it was cursed by the witch named Sarah Fier before her execution in 1666. After a car crash involving Sam and Deena, Sam is now being stalked by the murderers that have plagued Shadyside since the 17th Century. Unfortunately, law enforcement, particularly Sheriff Goode (Ashley Zukerman), doesn’t believe in ghosts. Deena, Josh, and their friends end up thwarting the attack by killing Sam and reviving her, only for Sam to become possessed and be the next killer. The only thing that might save them is talking to the only survivor of another massacre in 1978 (Gillian Jacobs) and finding out what connection that murder has to the modern one, then figuring out the real truth of the events of 1666. 

There’s a guy with a bag on his head and an axe. Sound familiar?

I have to credit Netflix for the ambition of filming three movies set in three different time periods and releasing them as part of one long film. Each one feels a little different, not just because they’re in different time periods, but because they often feel like different kinds of horror films. The 90s one heavily involves the undead slashers pursuing the kids who are relatively genre savvy, much like Scream. The 1978 film features a classic summer camp killer in the vein of Friday the 13th. The 1666 film addresses the Puritan witch hunts where many women were accused less because of any ability, but more because the towns need a scapegoat or to keep order. The final one also manages to wrap up the plot of the 1990s film in the process, literally feeling like two complete films that tie together solidly. The horror is well done, the performances are better than I would have expected for a young adult horror series, and, again, the scope of the story is impressive. 

They’re not actually diverse, it’s just a vision using duplicate casting. Puritans were racist, man.

Overall, I really recommend the films if you liked the Fear Street books or even Goosebumps, but know that it’s a bit scarier than the latter.

If you want to check out some more by the Joker on the Sofa, check out the 100 Greatest TV Episodes of All TimeCollection of TV EpisodesCollection of Movie Reviews, or the Joker on the Sofa Reviews.

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Space Jam: A New Legacy: It Had Its Moments – HBO Max Review

Pretty sure I just watched the longest commercial not starring Adam Sandler, but it did make me laugh.

The original Space Jam is a complicated movie. On the one hand, it was part of my childhood and I have a lot of nostalgia for it, it has one of my favorite Bill Murray cameos, and it perfectly encapsulates the year 1996 by being part of a giant commercial featuring Michael Jordan. On the other hand, it is a giant commercial featuring Michael Jordan (who cannot act), it has a lot of jokes that really don’t hold up when you aren’t a kid, and it is so dated that it probably seems absolutely bonkers to a modern audience. They have been speculating about making a sequel to this movie for *checks calendar* over twenty years and now have decided to use the nostalgia cash in at the very end of a pandemic, I guess. But at least this time it’s featuring LeBron James, so that’s different, right?

The jerseys are different… and worse?

The story this time is that LeBron James and his son Dom (Cedric Joe) are at a meeting at Warner Brothers Studios. LeBron is a bit overbearing as a dad and wants his son to attend basketball camp rather than game design camp. After the Warner Bros. algorithm, an AI named Al-G Rhythm (Don Cheadle), pitches an idea that LeBron rejects, Al-G abducts LeBron and Dom into cyberspace (thus the space in the title) and forces LeBron to play basketball against a group of CGI players called the Goon Squad (Damian Lillard, Anthony Davis, Klay Thompson, Nneka Ogwumike, Diana Taurasi). LeBron’s only hope is, unfortunately, Bugs Bunny (Jeff Bergman) and the rest of the Looney Tunes (due mostly to Bugs Bunny being a sociopath). 

Rabbit season.

This movie mostly failed on a lot of levels. On the most basic level, it hurts that this film is little more than a giant add for Warner Brothers properties. They reference Harry Potter, The Matrix, and Game of Thrones (proving this movie was written before the last season of that aired) constantly. The actual basketball game features a variety of cameos by WB animated and live-action characters that boggle the mind, particularly since a number of them are NOT kid friendly (the Droogs from A Clockwork Orange, the Nun from The Devils, Pennywise from IT, etc.). Hell, Rick and Morty have a speaking cameo which, admittedly, was funny. The film constantly has a tone of “look at what we own!” Then there are some of the style choices, most notably having CGI Looney Tunes for the actual game that really never stop looking unsettling. Also, LeBron James, who is a decent performer, is made into kind of a jerk towards his son for reasons that seem completely unnecessary. You can just have his son get abducted, guys, that’s a motive to play the game. Instead, they try to have Dom turn against his dad, which seemed like overkill. 

Oh look, Scooby Doo… and also a group of ultraviolent rapists.

On the other hand, this movie does actually have quite a few legitimate laughs. More than the original, for sure, even if I’m not sure it’s a more enjoyable film on the whole. A lot of them are at LeBron’s expense, something that Michael Jordan probably wouldn’t have tolerated. Michael also probably wouldn’t have tolerated being animated for so much of the film, which LeBron clearly endorsed. There is a Michael Jordan cameo and it is the absolute best joke for me in the film. Then there’s Don Cheadle. Don Cheadle puts way more effort into this than you would expect from someone of his caliber. He has to sell all of the over-the-top and borderline insane stuff that Al-G Rhythm comes up with and he pulls it off beautifully. Also, the Goon Squad is vastly superior to the Monstars in terms of creativity of both appearances and powers. 

Don Cheadle doing Ric Flair.

Overall, it’s not a great movie, but it wasn’t too bad. 

If you want to check out some more by the Joker on the Sofa, check out the 100 Greatest TV Episodes of All TimeCollection of TV EpisodesCollection of Movie Reviews, or the Joker on the Sofa Reviews.

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Gunpowder Milkshake: A Lighthearted Action Film – Netflix Review

It feels a little like John Wick, but in a good way.

Karen Gillan is a treasure. She made one of my favorite modern horror movies, Oculus, she was a companion on Doctor Who for years, and she displays an incredible amount of range despite prosthetics as Nebula in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Now, she wants to show you that she can kill a bunch of people in somehow hilarious and peppy ways. I’ve said repeatedly that one of my favorite tropes is a violent fight choreographed to an upbeat pop song, like the zombie fight to “Don’t Stop Me Now” in Shaun of the Dead. This movie uses that trope combined with a neon style and a glowing retro feel, best emphasized by the 1950s Diner that serves as a neutral ground for hitmen and mobsters. 

Now I want a milkshake and to shoot something.

Gillan plays Sam, a professional assassin working for Nathan (Paul Giamatti) an agent of “The Firm,” a group of men who apparently control everything. When she is hired to kill David (Samuel Anderson), an accountant who stole money from the Firm, Sam realizes that David was being blackmailed. A group of men are holding his daughter captive. Sam accidentally kills David and decides to protect his daughter, Emily (Chloe Coleman). Unfortunately, it turns out that Sam also accidentally killed the son of Jim McAlester (Ralph Ineson), the leader of a crime family who now wants revenge. Sam will have to turn to the librarians, a group of female killers who run the arms distribution in town: Madeleine (Carla Gugino), Florence (Michelle Yeoh), Anna May (Angela Bassett), and Scarlet (Lena Headey). Lots of fun killing will follow.

Don’t ask why that jacket is so dirty.

Aside from having a ton of long-cuts and showing Keanu Reeves kicking more ass than a convention of donkey punters, part of what worked well about the movie John Wick was that it showed us that there is a secret world of hitmen and mobsters that is working underneath the normal world. This film has that exact feeling. There is a giant library dedicated to buying and exchanging weapons, there’s a retro diner that’s filled with killers, there’s a hospital that only serves the mob, etc. It lends some credence to the idea of an unstoppable force of violence like Sam when it turns out that there’s a massive infrastructure dedicated to killing out there in the world. The film’s worldbuilding is effective, even though it is relatively limited. The sets, costumes, and cinematography are fantastic. Early on in the movie Sam is forced into a bowling outfit that becomes her signature throughout the story and the fact that they’re willing to put the main character in what is normally considered a dorky outfit is the kind of feel the movie is going for. The fight sequences, while still having a mostly average number of cuts for an action film, are creative and fun. The music does a great job of making the movie light enough to balance out much of the carnage. There is a level of physical humor inherent in much of the violence as well. 

Great supporting cast.

Overall, a fun movie if you like action. 

If you want to check out some more by the Joker on the Sofa, check out the 100 Greatest TV Episodes of All TimeCollection of TV EpisodesCollection of Movie Reviews, or the Joker on the Sofa Reviews.

If you enjoy these, please, like, share, tell your friends, like the Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/JokerOnTheSofa/), follow on Twitter @JokerOnTheSofa, and just generally give me a little bump. I’m not getting paid, but I like to get feedback.

Black Widow: Not Marvel’s Best, but Still Good – Disney+ Review

Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow first appeared in Iron Man 2 over a decade ago and died in 2019. Naturally, this was the perfect time to finally give her a solo film. I will acknowledge that Black Widow isn’t quite as easy to do a film about as Wonder Woman or Captain Marvel. Black Widow’s origin story is horrifying when you think about it hard enough. This movie, while it essentially montages over that period, makes it clear that she was essentially abducted as a child, tortured, operated on against her will, and brainwashed to be a perfect killing machine. Essentially, she’s the bad guy in most movies. So, doing a movie about her confronting that past, while it didn’t get as dark as it could have, was naturally going to have a lot of uncomfortable moments. The film tries, and largely succeeds, to balance this out with humor, but there are still a lot of parts of the movie where you will likely squirm a bit in your seat. That’s not a bad thing, but it’s definitely not what you expect from a Marvel movie.

As opposed to her posing repeatedly, which is heavily expected.

The film takes place right after Captain America: Civil War with Natasha Romanov on the run from General Thaddeus Ross (William Hurt). After seemingly finding a good place to hideout, she receives a package that was sent by her sister, Yelena (Florence Pugh), and is attacked by the assassin codenamed Taskmaster. Escaping, Natasha reunites with Yelena to find out that the Black Widows and the Red Room that trains them are both still operating, despite the fact that Natasha believed she killed Dreykov (Ray Winstone), the man operating it, as well as his daughter Antonia (Olga Kurylenko). The pair decide to find the Red Room through their old handlers and fake parents, the Soviet Super-Soldier Red Guardian (David Harbour) and Melina Vostokoff (Rachel Weisz). 

They kill people and look good doing it.

There are a lot of things this movie does well. It spends a lot of time taking apart tropes forced onto female characters in action films, with Yelena even calling Natasha a “poser” and those conversations are usually pretty hilarious. Actually the humor is mostly on point, particularly with the banter between Johansson and Pugh as well as David Harbour’s self-deluded super-soldier persona. The action sequences are excellent and contain some of the more fun entries into Marvel due to the fact that almost all of the characters in this film are not superhuman. It’s a little harder to know when something is dangerous when the characters can bench-press a bus or hold a helicopter in place. When most of the people can suffer collateral damage from explosions or getting punched a lot, then it seems like they’re in more trouble when they are being chased by an armored vehicle. The movie also does a good job of distinguishing itself from most of the other female-led movies by not trying to be an origin story and not trying to make its main character a paragon of virtue. Black Widow is almost a reformed supervillain and that’s not a common main character for a blockbuster film. 

His knuckles say “Karl Marx.” He can punch you into class unconsciousness.

There are some downsides, though. The movie touching on the abuse that the girls suffer in the Red Room is deeply disturbing, but the fact that they end up bantering with Harbour and Weisz, their fake parents who essentially handed them over to be tortured, is almost more unnerving. They make jokes about genital mutilation at one point to make Red Guardian uncomfortable, but it still seems weird for them to not want to just put a bullet in his head for allowing them to go through that. While maybe you can forgive Red Guardian as he is kind of an idiot who really bought into the ideology that what happened to them for the best, Melina is a genius who helped design the program they went through. They should want her to die painfully, not be a surrogate mom again. Also, there’s nothing that can really happen in the movie that’s too surprising, because we know that Black Widow survives only to die five movies ago.

At least Natasha tries to keep her sister safe.

Overall, though, this was definitely a movie that was worth seeing. 

If you want to check out some more by the Joker on the Sofa, check out the 100 Greatest TV Episodes of All TimeCollection of TV EpisodesCollection of Movie Reviews, or the Joker on the Sofa Reviews.

If you enjoy these, please, like, share, tell your friends, like the Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/JokerOnTheSofa/), follow on Twitter @JokerOnTheSofa, and just generally give me a little bump. I’m not getting paid, but I like to get feedback.

Rick and Mondays: S5E4 “Rickdependence Spray”

Rick and Morty tries to prove that it is not, in fact, a show for smart people. They succeed.

I don’t know if this is the worst episode of this series, but I am willing to state that it is probably the least clever episode. The entire thing felt like the set-up to a Rick and Morty joke where everything is revealed to be a prank on Morty or something like in the “Vat of Acid Episode,” but instead it is just played straight. I think that might be either a set-up for something later on in the series or kind of a meta prank on the audience who, like me, would constantly spend the episode waiting for the clever twist. It’s not that they haven’t done linear episodes before, ranging from the miserable “Anatomy Park” to the absolutely amazing “Pickle Rick,” but this one really needed something to redeem it.

It begins with Morty sticking his genitals in a machine designed to catch horse sperm, so that’s not great.

The episode starts with Morty (Justin Roiland) meeting Beth (Sarah Chalke) at her veterinary office and seeing a machine that harvests horse semen. Morty then uses the machine to get off for a week before Rick (Roiland) steals a vat of the supposed horse semen to use in his war against the Cannibal Horse Underground Dwellers (CHUDs). Unfortunately, when Morty lies about having his semen in the container, it causes Rick to accidentally make Morty’s sperm gigantic and occasionally sentient. The sperm start attacking Earth and the President (Keith David) believes Morty’s lie about not knowing what happened. Rick and Morty join a pair of marines to find the sperm’s lair where Morty is captured by a talking sperm in a mech suit who reveals that Morty created them. Rick, disturbed by this revelation, helps Morty plant nukes in the sperm base, but find out that the sperm are heading to Vegas. Summer (Spencer Grammer) came up with the idea to have her egg enlarged to attract the sperm, only to have the credit stolen by a scientist working for the President named Shabooboo. Rick and Morty are captured by the CHUDs, but are saved by the revelation that Rick impregnated their princess. The CHUDs help Rick and Morty and the Army try to stop the sperm. They seem to succeed, only for a friendly sperm Morty had named “Sticky” to enter the egg, creating a giant incest baby that gets shot into space.

Yeah. Giant incest baby 2001: A Space Odyssey reference. Fun (except not).

This is a strong contender for the worst episode of this show so far. The plot is linear and not particularly interesting, beyond the intervention of the CHUDs. I admit horse cannibals who burrow through the ground were pretty funny. The only way they could have pulled this off something so straightforward was if the humor in the episode was really on point, but it definitely was not. The entire episode is mostly gross-out humor ranging from the giant sperm images to a literal incest baby. That’s not to say that it doesn’t have its moments. The scene of Beth telling Summer that she’s finally a woman because a man stole her idea and didn’t give her credit is pretty solid, even if that joke has been played out a lot lately. The line from the sperm queen about them not bringing a woman who can kickbox was pretty great. Rick finally admitting his addiction when he realizes that he impregnated a mutant horse was absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately, there just weren’t enough jokes to fill the whole time without making me think “am I really watching giant sperm right now?”

The horse people are pretty funny. Particularly the “burrowing horses.”

JOKER’S THEORY CORNER

Is this episode intentionally stupid? Here me out. This season has, so far, mostly been a series of really funny episodes that usually contain either great A-Plot and B-Plot interplay or, like Mortyplicity, an amazing premise that keeps surprising you. However, these episodes have been a bit harder to follow than some of the episodes in the earlier seasons, at least for people who don’t have great attention spans. So I think they might actually have made an episode that’s intentionally base and stupid so that the fandom that was complaining about the first few episodes would have something to grab onto. Dan Harmon is exactly the kind of guy who might troll the audience like that, perhaps even later calling this a “gas leak episode.” 

I mean, Amazing Jonathan has great talent at doing bad jokes as set-ups for great jokes.

Overall, I give this episode an

D

on the Rick and Morty scale.

Wubba-Lubba-Dub-Dub, I need a drink. See you next week.

PREVIOUS – 44: A Rickconvenient Mort

NEXT – 46: Amortycan Grickfitti

If you want to check out some more by the Joker on the Sofa, check out the 100 Greatest TV Episodes of All TimeCollection of TV EpisodesCollection of Movie Reviews, or the Joker on the Sofa Reviews.

If you enjoy these, please, like, share, tell your friends, like the Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/JokerOnTheSofa/), follow on Twitter @JokerOnTheSofa, and just generally give me a little bump. I’m not getting paid, but I like to get feedback.

Five Short Leftover Reviews

Sometimes there’s too much stuff to review, so here are some other things that you should check out or avoid.

CENTRAL PARK (Season 2) – Apple+ Review

The musical from the team behind Bob’s Burgers is back and, honestly, better than ever. The first few episodes of the next season have dropped and they contain a ton of great songs, great writing, and a lot more insight than I would have expected. One of the episodes contains a near perfect twist ending and one contains a level of introspection and emotional honesty that really hit me deeply. If you haven’t given this a shot yet, you need to.

CHAOS WALKING – Theatrical Review

This movie starts off with the interesting premise of a planet where the inhabitants are infected by “noise,” a psychic field that renders their thoughts out loud and even in images. Aliens killed off all of the women a generation ago. Tom Holland plays a young man on this planet when Daisy Ridley crashes onto it. Now, he has to protect her from the men who want to kill her entire mothership for their supplies. It’s not a bad movie, but it rarely plays the premise up as well as it could. It has some twists in it, but all of them are too obvious for the amount of build-up. Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley are good in it, though, and there are some great supporting cast members.

Oh, and John Wick Warning. There is a terrible dog killing.

RAY (Miniseries) – Netflix Review

This is a miniseries of films based on the short stories of acclaimed Indian director Satyajit Ray. They all have elements of seeming fantasy, but not all of them end up actually having fantastic worlds. The key to the series is that it is often focused on personal changes deriving from internal reflection triggered by external events, either because a person starts to believe that they no longer remember their past or because they meet a person that they didn’t realize they had a connection with. They’re all pretty different, so even if you don’t like one of them, maybe give the next one a try. I thought this was a fun series.

Really well-done anthology.

THE SEVENTH DAY – Netflix Review

Have you ever thought “we need another terrible version of the exorcist?” Because if you haven’t, then you are sane. Also, this movie isn’t for you. Starring Guy Pearce, who has clearly hit some hard times, as a veteran exorcist who is the Vatican’s resident rebel and Vadhir Derbez as the young and naive priest who is trying to find out the truth about demonic possession, the movie kind of falls apart early on. It almost seems like it is going to confront some of the inner workings of the Catholic Church, but instead basically says “the church is great because demons are very real.” 

Sure, we touch and murder some children, but we also are saving the world, so… we cool?

FATHERHOOD – Netflix Review

Kevin Hart plays Matthew Logelin, a man whose wife dies suddenly during childbirth, leaving him a single father. For a while, his mother and mother-in-law help out, but after they leave, he struggles before managing to get used to single parenting. Years later, Matthew’s daughter Maddy (Melody Hurd) starts having problems at school at the same time that Matthew tries dating again and is having more issues at work. It’s a solid movie mostly because it takes a lot of the issues very seriously and addresses some sides of single parenting that many movies skip. It’s just ultimately not a very interesting story.

Probably still worth watching if you like cute movies about raising kids.

Werewolves Within: A Hidden Masterpiece and a Must-See – Amazon Review

Josh Ruben has now made two amazing horror comedies in a row.

If you were to ask me the absolute best part of doing this blog, this is it: Finding an amazing movie that I would not have otherwise heard about. This film was only on my radar because I watched another hidden gem of a film, Scare Me, and saw that the writer/director, Collegehumor veteran Josh Ruben, was working on an adaptation of the video game Werewolves Within. For those not familiar, the game is just an adaptation of “Werewolf,” which is also called “Mafia,” and is about a group of people who are trying to find the killer hidden in their midst. This movie perfectly captures that element.

Lot of talent in a tiny shot.

The film starts with maybe the funniest joke to ever open a film, which I will not spoil here. The movie’s protagonist is introduced as Finn Wheeler (Sam Richardson), a forest ranger who has recently been assigned to the small town of Beaverfield. The town is currently divided over whether or not to allow an oil pipeline to be built by businessman Sam Parker (Wayne Duvall). Finn quickly hits it off with local mail carrier Cecily Moore (Milana Vayntrub) and is introduced to the locals, almost all of whom are crazy in their own way: Jeanine Sherman (Catherine Curtin) runs the local lodgings, environmentalist Jane Ellis (Rebecca Henderson) is staying with her to help stop the pipeline, Trisha and Pete Anderson (Michaela Watkins and Michael Chernus) are the ultra-conservatives who want the pipeline’s money, Marcus and Gwen (George Basil and Sarah Burns) are the local drug-altered trash, tech millionaires who are against the pipeline Devon and Joaquim Wolfson (Cheyenne Jackson and Harvey Guillén), and hermit Emerson Flint (Glenn Fleshler). That night, all of the generators in town are destroyed and a dog is killed (offscreen). When Dr. Ellis can’t figure out the species of the attacker, people start to believe that one of them may be a werewolf.

Finn is a very peaceful man having a very bad day.

The point of the game Werewolves Within, like Mafia or Among Us, is to try and find the impostor in the group, but you can also end up attacking innocent people if manipulated by the werewolf or paranoia. This movie perfectly captures that. The entire town, when we’re introduced to it, is already heavily divided. Trisha and Pete are angry at Jeanine and the Wolfsons for trying to block the pipeline that they think will make them rich, Sam Parker hates the work of Dr. Ellis for similar reasons, and Emerson hates and is hated by everyone because he’s a crazy violent survivalist who lives in a log cabin. When the generators are destroyed, it forces everyone into the same building, which leads to all of the grievances being aired and the tempers flaring. The wonderful mix of humor and over-the-top characters into all of these scenes keeps it from getting too boring or uncomfortably intense. It plays out like a fun game night, but with more graphic visuals.

The best part is that the movie works whether there is or isn’t a werewolf.

Sam Richardson and Milana Vayntrub are amazing as the leads, with her cynicism and snark balancing his impossible positivity. Honestly, though, all of the performances are great, as you’d expect from most of these actors. Harvey Guillén gets extra credit because, even though I recognized immediately that he was Guillermo from What We Do In the Shadows, he never seemed to do anything like that character. The film’s pacing and cinematography are great, really driving home the isolation of the location without making it unrelenting like in The Thing

Ah, just a normal small-town fireball.

Overall, this is just a masterpiece of a film. Spend the money. Rent the movie.

Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness: Great for Fans – Netflix Review

The great video game series gets an animated series adaptation.

Resident Evil has had a few decent anime film adaptations before now and, honestly, I’m not sure why this isn’t another movie. This entire series is only 4 episodes long and, cutting the excess credits and intro sequences, would probably only be about 95 minutes total. The episodes feed pretty directly from one to the next, so it would be easy to make it into one continuous story. But, I don’t make these decisions, so a television show it is. 

Whatever gets us more Leon and Claire.

The series features two of the most beloved Resident Evil protagonists, cop-turned-special-agent Leon Kennedy (Toshiyuki Morikawa/Nick Apostolides) and badass-cop-turned-badass-humanitarian Claire Redfield (Yūko Kaida/Stephanie Panisello). Following a hacking incident at the White House, Leon Kennedy is brought in to help consult, only to find a staged zombie assault. At the same time, Claire, who is trying to help the third-world country of Panemstan during a civil war, finds evidence that there are bio-organic weapons within the country. It turns out that the war is being heavily influenced by both the United States and China, almost like many countries during the Cold War, and unfortunately it’s not as easy to put down a government plot as a horde of flesh-eating undead. Good news, though, there are plenty of undead and bioweapons to kill along the way.

It’s got some 24 moments, but mostly zombies.

This show isn’t going to blow a lot of minds and it really isn’t going to be great if you aren’t a fan of Resident Evil, but if you spent hours of your childhood playing these games and then more hours of your adulthood to the point that you probably could have gotten another degree or learned the Theremin, then you’ll enjoy this. The show has a complicated plot, but so does the overarching series of Resident Evil, and it’s overshadowed by the action sequences and the cool shots of Leon kicking ass. The political thriller aspect does add a layer of intrigue to the story as well as some elevated stakes, but, again, it’s mostly just a way to justify getting a bunch of zombies and mutants in fun locations to kill. 

Naturally, there is a bunch of jumping.

Overall, if you’re not a fan of Resident Evil, maybe skip this one. If you are, check it out.

Netflix Review – Never Have I Ever: Wow, This is Really Good

Season 2 is out and this show is fantastic.

The Joker On The Sofa

Netflix gives us a series about a young Indian woman who is dealing with loss, love, and just being a dumb teen.

SUMMARY (Spoiler-Free)

Devi Vishwakumar (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) is a nerdy 15 year old Indian American in California. Her father, Mohan (Sendhil Ramamurthy), passed away last year of a heart attack, leading Devi to have a subsequent psychosomatic episode that paralyzed her from the legs down during her Freshman year. She recovers, thanks in part to her therapist Dr. Ryan (Niecy Nash), and plans to improve her life during sophomore year along with her two best friends: Science genius Fabiola Torres (Lee Rodriguez) and aspiring actor Eleanor Wong (Ramona Young). She decides that she’s going to try to hook up with the hottest guy in the class, Paxton Hall-Yoshida (Darret Barnet), and avoid her “nemesis” Ben Gross (Jaren Lewison). At the same time, Devi’s overbearing mother Dr. Nalini Vishwakumar (Poorna…

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Loki: It’s Loki All the Way Down – Disney+ Review (No Finale Spoilers)

The God of Mischief gets his own show and it is glorious.

It’s funny that people are still sharing the news article now about Tom Hiddleston’s casting in the original Thor film, saying that he, along with Chris Hemsworth, were “no names” as if it were absurd. The fact is it was true, they both were no names, particularly compared to Iron Man’s cast of Robert Downey Jr. and the Dude. After the film came out, it became clear that Hiddleston was not only going to be a big part of the MCU, but that he was the one villain that it made sense to keep bringing back. Iron Monger, Whiplash, Abomination, Red Skull… None of them held a candle to Loki as a fun villain, mostly because he was always just haughty enough that you loved watching him lose. When he finally died in Avengers: Infinity War, it was terrible knowing that we’d never see him again… until the past version of him escaped in Endgame and they announced that he was getting his own series. I was a little worried they might drop the ball by overusing the character, but somehow this show, which is as packed with Loki as it gets, nailed it.

Y’all want Loki? We’ll give you all the Loki you can handle.

The show starts with Loki escaping in Endgame, using the Tesseract to jump away from the Avengers during the events of the first Avengers film. He is quickly picked up by a group of militarized officers who take him to a facility called the Time Variance Authority, or TVA. The TVA are the group that patrols through time in order to avoid creating alternate timelines and the multiverse that would follow. Loki is recruited to work for the TVA by agent Mobius Mobius (Owen Wilson), who informs Loki that he has to track down an alternate version of Loki (Sophia Di Martino). However, it turns out there may be a lot more to the TVA than meets the eye, particularly when it comes to the motivations of TVA judge Renslayer (Gugu Mbatha-Raw). 

Dammit Owen Wilson, you’re always awesome.

The secret to this show is in how well it plays personalities off of each other. For the first few episodes the biggest pairing is Hiddleston and Wilson, who come off as if they are in a television remake of the film 48 Hours, where it’s the hardlined but still rule-bending cop and the streetwise comedic sidekick. Wilson is so disarmingly earnest in contrast to Hiddleston’s constant side-eyed scheming that it really makes for hilarious conversations. Even though the female Loki, Sylvie, is supposed to be similar to the main Loki, and is, she is just different enough that watching them interacting is incredibly entertaining. She’s got a lot of chips on her shoulders due to her life being ruined at an early age and having to live on the run for no reason, unlike Loki who actually did things that merit punishment. While the show does expand the worlds every episode, it still stays focused on these beautiful moments between characters, so it always feels grounded. 

She’s amazing and everyone should love her.

Overall, just a fantastic show, maybe my favorite television show in the MCU so far.