Friday, July 29, 2016

My Review of New Blood's 1x05: "Case 2, Part 2"

Written by Anthony Horowitz
Directed by Anthony Philipson

Rash (to Stefan): "Ever since I met you, my life has taken a serious downward turn."

And the conclusion thankfully turned out to be better than the start but just by a tiny swing. Stefan and Rash once again had their jobs on the line and came close to death as that assassin bloke literally strung them up and came close to killing the pair of them.

Of course, a bit of ingenuity and a surprising ally on their side did manage to save them from getting killed but when the two of them weren't being tied up and near killed, they were also clashing a bit over getting a room from Adam's former landlady.

I'm glad as the episode progressed that it pointed out the weirdness of either Stefan and Rash actually sharing a room with the woman involved in their investigation. Their bickering made this episode a lot more fun to watch, even with Leila also briefly getting involved and taking Stefan's side over her own brother's for good measure.

The rapport with the two is the show's success and it's nice to see that they're actually becoming friends with each passing episode but the case itself in spite of the twists and turns did lag a tiny bit though. However once again all the main villains of the piece either got away with their actions (Helen and her husband) or suffered the consequences (the Wesley brothers) for their misdeeds to boot.

- A lot of tension with Leila and Rash in this one. I think it's obvious she also fancies Stefan too.
- We learned that Eleanor had a husband who died and that she also knew that both Peter and Alison were related to each other.
- Nice commentary from Adam's friends about hunting for treasure in this one before the lads handed over the artifact to that curator as well.
- Looks like Stefan and Rash are actually moving in with each other in the next one.

A somewhat satisfying enough conclusion to this second case. The highlights were definitely the lads trying to not get killed from the assassin of the piece but most of the interconnecting stuff just seemed a bit muddled to really make this standout though.

Rating: 6 out of 10

Thursday, July 28, 2016

My Review of New Blood's 1x04: "Case 2, Part 1"

Written by Anthony Horowitz
Directed by Anthony Philipson

Stefan: "It wasn't your fault."
Rash: "I know it's not my fault. It's your fault."

The start of a new case and we've moved from evil drug testing to counter terrorism, shady antique owners and the development of a London building with the sharp name of Scimitar attached to it as Stefan and Rash find themselves working together and clashing for the second time again.

The death of a Polish construction worker named Adam (who got conveniently blown to bits whilst on his job) certainly kicked off the story well enough but as the episode progressed, things somewhat meandered again until the final five minutes delivered something genuinely riveting.

I do appreciate that this show has gone with such a different approach for Stefan and Rash's partnership seeing as they strictly have two different jobs but have become friends and frequently defy their bosses orders to try and get results. Here they decided to do a little snooping on snarling antique owner Gulliver and managed to miss the guy being burned alive with his shop towards the end of things.

I'm not particularly sure where this one is strictly going but the sinister couple whom Stefan has played undercover driver for are interesting enough along with the bloke who attempted to murder Adam at the start and succeeded in killing Gulliver towards the end of the episode.

However four episodes in and there's still some problems. Rash's bosses are too poorly defined as characters to care about and the whole Stefan/Leila feels just a tiny bit contrived as well. On the plus side, at least Eleanor is a solid female character and I quite like trying to guess what Peter's motives as well. He's quite a fascinating character, though we're seeing little of him so far.

- Stefan and Rash have yet to move in with each other. I thought they were going to at the end of the previous one.
- Stefan does seem to put on an access every time he goes undercover, doesn't he?
- I guess we're waiting for the last episode before anyone realises that Peter and Alison are actually uncle and niece. I find their rapport pretty interesting.

Not a terrible episode as such but a bit too dull and plodding in some parts. It was only really in the last five minutes that things actually livened up. Hopefully the second part of this will end it on a better note though.

Rating: 6 out of 10

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Comic-Con 2016 - Highlights

In the past I've done more individual trailers and stuff for some of the panels but this year I decided to do more of a rundown of stuff we've learned from various shows and movies over the last few days at Comic Con. Without further ado ....

Castings Alert

- Rihanna has been cast as Marion Crane for the fifth and final season of Bates Motel.
- Once Upon A Time's sixth season will be adding Aladdin (Deniz Akdeniz), Jasmine (Karen David), Jafar (Oded Fehr replacing Naveen Andrews), Morpheus (Giles Matthay) and the Count of Monte Cristo (Craig Horner)
- Kristin Chenowith has been cast as Easter for American Gods.
- Agents Of SHIELD have added Ghost Rider into the mix with Gabriel Luna taking on the role, Lili Birdsell will also recur in the new season.
- Neil Jackson has joined the cast of The Originals while Nathalie Kelly will be playing evil herself in The Vampire Diaries.
- Brie Larson has been cast as Captain Marvel.

Time To Say Goodbye And Hello

- Over the weekend, it was confirmed that the upcoming seasons of Bates Motel, The Vampire Diaries and Teen Wolf will be their final seasons.
- Game Of Thrones seventh season will only be seven episodes and will air in Summer 2017. I assume then it's inevitable eighth season will only be six episodes then.
- Legion will be coming next year for US viewers as will BBCAmerica's version of Dirk Gently with Samuel Barnett and Elijah Wood.
- Viewers will be meeting Penny's mother and brother in the tenth season of The Big Bang Theory as played by Katey Sagal and Jack McBrayer respectively.
- Colton Haynes will be playing a mysterious role in the second season of Scream Queens.
- David Tennant will also be playing the Doctor again, this time on Family Guy during a spoof.

Star Trek: Discovery

With Star Trek Beyond currently in the cinemas, here is a stark reminder that next year we will have a television series once again. While Bryan Fuller sadly didn't confirm the cast at Comic Con (something of an oversight there), he did confirm the proper title for the show and you know what? I like it! We also got an image of the ship as well, which looks okay so far. It's also been confirmed that UK viewers will be able to see the series on Netflix next year.

Sherlock: Series 4 Trailer

Between Benedict Cumberbatch appearing at San Diego as part of the promotion for Doctor Strange (still not too fussed on that to be honest), a trailer for the fourth series of Sherlock was also released and it certainly piqued interest. It looked dark and brooding and even contained the delightful moment where Mrs Hudson likened Mycroft to a reptile. We're also been teased as to whether or not Moriarty (Andrew Scott) is still alive, seeing Mary (Amanda Abbington) in gun toting action and getting a nice look at Toby Jones playing the baddie too. Overall, it looks like a promising season ahead. You can have a look at it here ,...

That's a round up wrap for this year's Comic Con. This time next year, yeah?

Comic Con 2016: The DC Movie & Television Round Up

I apologise for not being more up to date with these Comic Con blogs but with a lot of information to process, I had to decide how I was going to go about things. As a fan of the DC comics/movies/TV shows, they were certainly the ones who ruled this weekend. Their best bits so to speak ....

Unite The (Five Of) Seven

- Did anyone want a nice cast shot of the Justice League? Well, you've got one of six of the principal cast members. Sadly we didn't learn who the seventh hero in question is (will be shocked if it's someone other than Green Lantern so to speak) but we got a trailer.
- A two and a half minute delightful trailer which saw Batman (Ben Affleck) and Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) banding together to bring The Flash (Ezra Miller), Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) into the fold. No sign of Superman (Henry Cavill) yet but we know that death isn't going to be a deterrent for him so to speak.
- Keeping with the trailers, we also got a new one for Wonder Woman and if you didn't love Gal Gadot as the Amazonian beforehand, you definitely will after seeing this one. Chris Pine as Steve Trevor isn't too shabby either.
- Meanwhile with less than a fortnight to go, Suicide Squad have been ramping up the promotional blitz with more cast shots, character spots and so on. One more trailer was released for the movie and it's really not long until this movie finally comes out.
- There's also been rumblings of a Harley Quinn/Birds Of Prey spin off movie and Ben Affleck could be directing his own solo Batman movie as well.

Wonder Woman Trailer:
Justice League Trailer:
Suicide Squad Trailer:

Wonder Woman is released on June 2nd 2017 and Justice League will be released on November 17th 2017. Suicide Squad is in theatres from August 5th.

Meanwhile In The TV Universe

- Well, we certainly got some trailers behold. Gotham gave us the briefest of ones with about thirty seconds of their sizzle reel showing us anything new. So far we're seeing Barbara (Erin Richards) and Tabitha (Jessica Lucas) opening a nightclub, Oswald (Robin Lord Taylor) being hoisted up, Fish (Jada Pinkett Smith) seemingly catching up with Hugo Strange (BD Wong) and Valerie Vale (Jamie Chung).
- There's also rumours that James Gordon (Benjamin McKenzie) may be taking on a new persona and Edward Nygma (Cory Michael Smith) will be the latest person to be released from Arkham Asylum.
- Arrow on the other hand showed us a flashback to the recently killed off Laurel Lance (Katie Cassidy) while Oliver and Felicity clashed over starting up a new team.
- A new team which includes Wild Dog (Rick Gonzalez), Artemis (Madison McLaughlin) and the future Mr Terrific/Curtis (Echo Kellum) somewhat training with an impatient Oliver. We've also got a new baddie in the midst going by the name of Prometheus (no, not that one) too.
- The Flash meanwhile will seriously be delving into Flashpoint territory as the consequences for Barry (Grant Gustin) saving his mother become apparent pretty quickly. Billionaire Cisco and more Reverse Flash for instance as well as the introduction of Wally West's Kid Flash.
- Tom Felton's character has more or less been confirmed as Dr Alchemy (with Tobin Bell providing the voice) but there will also be another speedster antagonist in the new season to boot.
- Legends Of Tomorrow's second season will be a full one this time around and viewers will be able to see both Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) and Damien Darhk in the first episode. Jonah Hex will be returning for the sixth one.
- Viewers will also be meeting the Justice Society Of America (Hourman, Commander Steel, Vixen, Stargirl, Obsidian and Dr MidNite) and of course, the Legion of Doom (Reverse Flash, Damien Darhk, Malcolm Merlyn and Captain Cold).
- As for Supergirl, not as much news was released for the upcoming season but we do know that there will be a bit of a clash between Kara (Melissa Benoist) and her more famous cousin, Superman (Tyler Hoechlin) though.
- As for Chris Woods character, it seems that he's someone from the Pod that was discovered by Kara during the first season finale. It's also been revealed that Floriana Lima will be playing Maggie Sawyer and Ian Gomez will be playing Snapper Carr. The latter will not be a fan of Kara or Supergirl either.

And an exclusive look at Tyler Hoechlin as Superman with Melissa Benoist's Supergirl too ....

Thoughts anyone?

Gotham - Season 3 Trailer:
Arrow - Season 5 Trailer:
The Flash - Season 3 Trailer:
Legends Of Tomorrow - Season 2 Trailer:

Gotham airs Mondays 8pm on FOX from September 19th, The Flash airs Tuesdays 8pm on the CW from October 4th, Arrow airs Wednesdays 8pm on the CW from October 5th, Supergirl airs Mondays 8pm on the CW from October 10th and Legends Of Tomorrow airs Thursdays 8pm on the CW from October 13th.

And In Other DC News (Spoilers Alert)

- Kiersey Clemons has been cast as Iris West for the upcoming movie, The Flash.
- Katie Cassidy has signed a similar deal to both John Barrowman and Wentworth Miller so we will be seeing her in the upcoming seasons of Arrow, The Flash and Legends Of Tomorrow.
- Joe Dinicol has been cast as Ragman for an upcoming episode of Arrow.
- The Killing Joke has a particularly controversial look into both Bruce and Barbara's relationship. The movie is out now on DVD.
- Matt Ryan's Constantine is not only getting an action figure for next year but CWSeed are airing all thirteen episodes of the series and the character is a main player in the upcoming Justice League Dark animated movie, with Ryan reprising the role for the movie.
- Tricia Helfer will be playing Lucifer's mother in the second season of Lucifer and has already been upgraded to regular status.

And that's it for now. More DC movie and TV news and reviews to follow soon.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

My Review of New Blood's 1x03: "Case 1, Part 3"

Written by Anthony Horowitz
Directed by Anthony Philipson

Stefan: "Do you want chocolate?"
Rash: "Of course."

And the case is finally solved. It took three episodes, various dead bodies, a framed person and a near death experience or two for our two protagonists but this episode managed to wrap the whole Lipocite/drug testing plot on a nearly satisfying note.

I said nearly because it did feel somewhat a little too convenient that no-one aside from David Leese actually got brought to justice and the two deadly assassin ladies (who killed both Bruce and Coleman) also managed to slip away quite well while Henry was eventually exonerated for the murders he didn't commit.

I did like that Stefan and Rash risked their jobs (both lost them, both regained them by the end of this one) in order to solve the case. Rash knew it wasn't Henry responsible for the murders and Stefan was actually successful in getting Bruce to finally crack and fill in the dots before the guy ended up being shot to pieces.

The best sequence and by far the daftest though was seeing both Stefan and Rash jumping off the hotel room and managing to successfully land in the swimming pool. If there's one other thing this show has in it's favour, it's that it revels in the absolute absurd with the stylistic sequences that the more I watch this show, the more I'm convinced it's a natural successor to Hustle more than anything else.

Of course the highlight of this episode was the increased screen time with Stefan and Rash. They started the episode by chasing down a nervous Henry and then ended it with deciding to get a flat together. Both actors continue to play off each other so well and it really has become the driving force behind the show, which isn't the most thorough of police dramas.

- I had to laugh at Stefan's boss saying that they ran a serious operation. The tone of this show really does suggest otherwise.
- Why do I get the feeling we'll see those killer ladies again. Mayhew's pulling the strings and he doesn't seem to be done yet.
- No Leila in this episode. Rash's irritation in Stefan being interested in her is amusing though.

Overall, while I think this storyline could've done with two episodes, this one did end it on a pretty strong note. The rapport with Stefan and Rash though is the hook, but I do think the other characters (aside from Leila) do need to be fleshed out a little better though.

Rating: 7 out of 10

Friday, July 22, 2016

Luke Cage/Iron Fist/The Defenders - Comic Con Trailers

Comic Con is officially here and over the next few days, we're going to be getting some great treats, First up, a look at the trailers for some upcoming Netflix/Marvel shows.

Luke Cage: I've been waiting a while for a trailer for Mike Colter's super strong heroic, bar owner and it did not disappoint in the slightest. The minute and a half trailer saw Luke ripping off a car door and using it as a shield against some gun toting baddies while telling us that he's ready. It's also another two months before the series gets it's release on Netflix so I'm imagining that more trailers and promotion are imminent for the upcoming series.


Iron Fist: I wasn't expecting a trailer for this series but I'm really glad one appeared. As well publicised by now, former Game Of Thrones actor Finn Jones has taken on the role of rich boy, Danny Rand/Iron Fist and despite one or two Arrow type reminders, this trailer certainly set up things well for the upcoming series. Now all we have to do is see Danny in costume and unlike Daredevil, I really hope it doesn't take all of the first season for that to happen.


The Defenders: And finally we got this trailer. Less of actual footage and more of a voice over from Stick (Scott Glen) as he questions whether or not the combined forces of Matt Murdoch, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Danny Rand are enough to take out the Hand once and for all and ultimately save New York from destruction. I can't wait to see all four characters meet and interact with each other during this particular event series.


Also in the least shocking news ever, Marvel confirmed at Comic Con that Daredevil will be returning to Netflix for a third season. However due to the character's role in The Defenders, the wait will be a little longer but either way, it's good news though. The show's second season certainly gripped and ended on a high note and I am intrigued to see what a third year will offer.

Daredevil News:

Luke Cage will be released on Netflix from September 30th while Iron Fist and The Defenders will debut in 2017.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

My Review of New Blood's 1x02: "Case 1, Part 2"

Written by Anthony Horowitz
Directed by Anthony Philipson

Stefan: "Thanks."
Rash: "Don't mention it. You just ruined my evening."

A bit of a slower one than the first. Having done some reading up, I do find it interesting that later cases are done in two episodes and while I have yet to watch the third episode (that's likely to be tomorrow), I do wonder if this whole storyline should've been resolved here instead of extending until the next one.

Of course this episode did seem to have a lot of build up into it though. We had Laura's funeral which also introduced a few more characters from the India trip of 2010, including Bruce Lockwood and the rather sinister company Green Fern, which did help intensify things when Stefan's own investigation at their party saw him being drugged and then saved by Rash halfway through the episode.

If there's a disappointment it's probably that we haven't seen enough of Stefan and Rash together. Like in my previous review, the actors play off each other so well and Stefan certainly made more of an impression on Rash by puking on his before it was revealed  to the both of them that they were working on the same case. The last scene as they went to chase Henry was something of a comical delight, intentional or not.

The Henry part of the episode was a little more interesting as those two sinister ladies from the first episode planted evidence on him to make him look like a killer. I did find myself a bit more sympathetic towards Henry in this one and I liked that Rash showed some doubts towards him being the killer despite chasing after him with Stefan at the end.

As for the rest of this episode, there were some moments that confused but overall, this whole medical drug trial storyline has been solid enough. The next episode will undoubtedly be the deciding factor in all of this though to whether or not stretching out each case over several episodes is the best approach for the show.

- We learned that Allison (who fancies Stefan) is actually Peter Mayhew's niece and she's been spying for him.
- Bit mixed on Stefan and Leila but don't dislike it either. I do hope Leila is given a bit more to do though.
- The credit sequence seems a little similar (but not a rip off) to Sherlock.
- Points to the trippy and creepy as hell visuals we got during Stefan's drugged state. They made me jump a little at one point.

A solid episode but a little bit slower than the first one and at times, perhaps a little too much on the exposition side of things. The potential though is still there and I like the fun element to the leads rapport as well.

Rating: 6 out of 10

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Batman Beyond - Episodes 49-52 Reviews

The final few episodes of this series sees the returns of several baddies and a moment where Terry seriously put his identity at great risk.

Episodes 49 & 50: The Curse Of The Kobra

One more two parter before the series and it's better than expected. While the previous one with the Justice League was a bit one, this feel a little smaller by comparison at first. Terry gets some training by Kairi Tanaga, going on Bruce's advice and befriends the somewhat strange Zander who is then beaten by Max at a video game. It seems that Zander has been position as the new leader of the Kobra and Max is going to become a reptilian bride whether she likes it or not. Zander is a pretty engaging guest villain and I quite liked Kairi as a character too. The ending is pretty bittersweet for this one. There's also a brief Jokerz appearance in this one. 8/10

Episode 51: Countdown

The returns are still strong in these episodes. This time around you've got Mad Stan getting some more extended screen time as he decides to add vigilante to his resume of things he's somewhat done on the series. To his credit, he did manage to rescue Zeta from a couple of bloke and there was some nice moments with Terry and Ro and Stan's little dog was adorable too. Unfortunately we did have Zeta being used as a time bomb but fortunately that one resolved itself though. Despite being the penultimate episode, this was actually made before the finale and this was also a crossover episode with The Zeta Project. Speaking of. 7/10

Episode 52: Unmasked

Now this was a bit of an anti climatic finale. I don't know if this was truly intended to be a final episode and while it's engaging, it just feels too low key to be a series ender though. Once again, the Kobra gang (I swear they have a new leader every story they're in) learn that a little boy knows who Batman is so they get agents to pose as the police to snatch the kid and identify Batman. While Terry was reckless in revealing his identity to the kid in general, it does seem for the time being that his secret is safe while the Kobra gang got their backsides handed to them once again. I liked the last scene and overall the episode is good but could've been a bit stronger though. 7/10

Next time it'll be The Batman. I've enjoyed reviewing this series a lot.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

My Review of New Blood's 1x01: "Case 1, Part 1"

Written by Anthony Horowitz
Directed by Anthony Philipson

Rash: "I don’t want to be a policeman. I want to be a detective."

The detective show isn't exactly something that we're lacking on television at the moment. Every week there's virtually a new one to get into but BBC1 have gone with something a little different with their latest offering from Foyle's War creator, Anthony Horowitz.

A seven part drama, the focus is on newly promoted junior detective Rash Sayyad (Ben Tavassoli) and Serious Fraud Office investigator Stefan Kowolski  (Mark Strepan) as the two of them in this opening installment are essentially investigating the same case but from two different angles as one looks into the victims of a pharmaceutical company's experimental drugs while the other is undercover in the company in question, playing up his accent and sawing down doors.

If you're looking for something gritty, there's a chance this might not be the show for you, though there are certainly some gruesome deaths to begin and end the episode and the antics of an isolated loner named Henry (who unknown to him is being lured into a deadly trap by a group of women) certainly raise some interesting moments when he quits his job and isolates his concerned mother with his erratic behaviour.

The main plot with the company is certainly interesting enough though Stefan's false boss David Leese is more of a pawn in a bigger scheme than previously led to believe. Meanwhile Rash has to deal with a rather sarcastic and sullen boss in Mark Addy's character DS Derek Sands as he delves deeper into the actions of a woman named Laura who underwent a drug trial six years prior in India.

The show has been heavily publicised the 'bromance' between Stefan and Rash as it's selling point, although they only share a brief exchange here when they're taking part in the same race and Stefan tries his luck with Rash's sister, Leila, played by Aiysha Hart and they clash a bit. That being said, the potential partnership between the pair is great while the show makes a solid effort into exploring both men's lives outside of their work as well in order to give them both a little more depth.

- Rash is Iranian and Stefan is Polish, both of which is acknowledged within the episode in a manner that didn't feel contrived. They both also have a thing for biking.
- Anna Chancellor popped up here as SFO director, Eleanor Davies while Mark Bonner also appeared as a clearly villainous government figure named Peter Mayhew.
- iPlayer have been airing the episodes prior to their screening on BBC1. In a lot of ways though, it feels like a show aimed for BBC3.
- Stefan and Rash's home backgrounds couldn't be more different to each other as well.

A fun start for a show that certainly seems to have a fun feel to it. Yes, there's a serious drugs trial plot that will be explored in the next two episodes and older/more experienced characters but the youth of the leads and the charisma from them certainly gives the show a well needed boost. A fun one to watch at the moment.

Rating: 7 out of 10

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Star Trek Beyond - The Sulu Debate

Last week, it was revealed that John Cho's Hiraku Sulu in the upcoming movie Star Trek Beyond would have a husband and daughter and it's certainly generated an interesting debate.

Thought as a tribute to the original actor, George Takei who played the role in the original Star Trek television series and the first few movies, Takei's comments on the matter have certainly been interesting. The openly gay actor himself expressed some disappointment in the decision by the movie's co-writer Simon Pegg and while a part of me can empathise a little with his stance, I have to admit that even without the staunch of the upcoming movie's co-stars such as out actor Zachary Quinto, who plays Spock, I'm seeing this development with Sulu as a good thing.

In the movie we briefly see Sulu's partner Ben (Doug Jung, co-writer of the movie), so it doesn't feel like it's something that the movie is trying to sensationalise. Sulu's sexuality and considering that these movies since 2009 have been set in some kind of alternative universe, is it really that big a deal? Despite having a daughter, Sulu has never been presented as an overly heterosexual character to begin with and it's certainly high time that we had a  prominent LGBT character in the Star Trek universe (aside from Terry Farrell's Dax in Deep Space Nine who's bisexual) and with movies still being behind on LGBT characters compared to television these days, having a character like Sulu be out and proud while at the same time not having his sexuality wholly define him can only be a good thing in my opinion. Not to mention the fact that John Cho is an exceptional actor and handsome man. Personally I think it's a commendable decision.

It's also making me curious though for CBS/CBS All Access's upcoming Star Trek series as well. When asked last month if the series (whose cast has yet to be confirmed) would have any LGBT characters, Fuller did state that fans "would be happy" but didn't directly confirm anything concrete. In light of Sulu now being an out man with a husband and daughter, I do hope that one of the main characters in Fuller's reimagining is an openly LGBT character. It's certainly more than due now. Thoughts anyone on both the upcoming and television series and LGBT characters in general?

More Discussion:

Star Trek Beyond will be in cinemas from July 22.

Monday, July 11, 2016

My Review of Scream 4 (2011)

Written by Kevin Williamson And Ehren Kruger
Directed by Wes Craven

Sidney: "You forgot the first rule of remakes, Jill. Don't fuck with the original!"

Prior to MTV doing their version of this franchise through a fun but relatively TV series in it's second season, this movie was one last stab of rebooting the entire franchise and despite having the three survivors we've known and loved in the first three movies, this was a reboot in a lot of ways.

Set fifteen years after the first killings and finally returning the action to Woodsboro, Sidney is no longer in hiding but instead has become a successful book author (Out Of Darkness), to counter Gale settling for the slow pace life with Dewey and some rather unenviable writer's block to boot. Of course with Sidney's return to her old stomping ground, Ghostface soon gets busy and reminds both her and the audience that they're a force to be reckoned.

Unlike the second and third movies which often struggled with adding in some new engaging characters, this movie manages to have plenty in abundance. There's Dewey's deputy Judy Hicks (Marley Shelton) who fuses a degree of likability to offset Sidney's dollar fixated publicist Rebecca Walters (Alison Brie) and of course a short but nice enough appearance of Sidney's previously unmentioned aunt, Kate (Mary McDonnell). Two of those three of course do not make it out of this one alive.

Then there's the younger cast, which in my opinion are some of the most successful we've had since the first movie. The tag team of Sidney's fame hungry cousin Jill (Emma Roberts) and her easily led partner in crime, Charlie (Rory Culkin) make for satisfying antagonists, actually some of the best we've had since Stu, Billy and the latter's mother and the last confrontation between Sidney and Jill at the hospital is one of the best final moments from any of the movies we've had.

Of course, the biggest revelation of this particular movie is of course, Hayden Panettiere. Best known for her roles in both Heroes and Nashville, Panettiere takes on the role of Jill's horror movie buff friend Kirby Reed and it's pretty noticeable that she's a bit closer to the mark to being the new Sidney (with a bit of Randy thrown in there too) than Jill actually was and her fate is left a little ambiguous in this one as well. Had this movie done better and a fifth one had emerged, it would've been nice for Kirby to have returned. As for Trevor (Nico Tortorella) and the maybe gay Robbie Mercer (Erik Knudsen), well they managed to fare a bit better than Olivia Morris (Marielle Jaffe) but only by a tiny margin though.

As for our regulars, well once again, Sidney was put in the position of losing family members and being betrayed by them. I will admit that Jill worked so much better as a personal threat compared to Roman in the previous movie. As for Gale and Dewey, a few marital blips and the former getting attacked by the killer, they were mostly on the same page for once and of course survived to tell the tale once again.

- The opening scene really did take the meta text to a whole new level. Why did Veronica Mars kill Sookie Stackhouse again? Also, one of the Stab movies involves time travel.
- This is one of the few horror franchises to have all it's main characters return for every sequel so far or change the title so much.
- On a sad note, this was also Wes Craven's last film prior to his death last year as well.
- Two of the killers have been female and two of them have been relatives of Sidney.

Easily the best one of the four movies after the first one of course. Scream 4 had a lot to say about the nature of reboots/remakes and while the meta stuff was certainly old hat by the time this was released, it still managed to get the message across well. The third movie might have inadvertently steered into unintentional parody at times but this one certainly gave a new energy to the franchise and while I don't mind the current TV series, a part of me would prefer another movie though.

Rating: 9 out of 10

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Batman Beyond - Episodes 45-48 Reviews

Well, things certainly heated up here with a talking gorilla, a Justice League two parter and the return of another villain too.

Episode 45: Speak No Evil

You'd think an episode focusing on a talking gorilla would be the perfect one to feature Grodd but apparently not. Instead we've got Fingers, a scientifically experimented on with human DNA gorilla out for vengeance against the man who seperated him from his family. It's a better than expected episode with Fingers being sympathetic enough and also smart enough to allow both Terry and Bruce to reason with him as well. I did like at the end of the episode where Fingers decided to retain his memories and abilities and that Terry and Bruce allowed him to do so. 8/10

Episodes 46 & 47: The Call

Unlike Batman: The Animated Series, which had some frequent two parters, this show has kept them to a minimum with this only being the second one that they've actually done, which is impressive. Also impressive is that it's a Justice League two parter with Terry getting the invite to join the gang by an older Superman. However, the other members, in particular Big Barda and War Hawk are less than enamoured with him joining up while Aquagirl, Micron and Green Latern are more neutral. However things aren't what they seem as Superman is convinced that one of the team is a traitor and things come to a head when War Hawk is nearly killed by Superman and Bruce encourages Terry to use a shard of Kryptonite against. However it's only when everyone locates Superman at the Fortress of Solitude is it really that Starro has taken possession of him with the rest of his creatures getting everyone except Batman in the mix. It's a tense two parter, filled with some great action sequences, flashbacks and character bits as Terry ponders joining the gang before making his eventual decision. A part of me would've liked more involvement with Bruce but other than that, this is a wonderful set of episodes. 9/10

Episode 48: Betrayal

I wasn't particularly enamoured with Charlie/Big Time in his previous outing and I wasn't exactly eager for a return piece, especially not so soon but here we are. This time around, Charlie has teamed up with someone called The Major who treats him like a brute so he has Terry kidnapped in order to have an ally he can trust. Terry sensibly decides not to help Charlie and the remainder of the episode bounces between Charlie attempting to play off his former friend's emotions while coming to something of a pernament end (I hope). There is a fun moment where Max is tempted to don the batsuit and Bruce halts the idea but other than that, this episode was a bore to be honest. 5/10

Last blog will focus on The Curse Of The Kobra Parts 1 & 2, Countdown and Unmasked.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Batman Beyond - Episodes 41-44 Reviews

A series of episodes where the past came back to haunt both the good and bad guys of this series in quite a way.

Episode 41: Untouchable

An interesting look at some Isotope technology as the main villain is someone who has managed to harness the stuff in order to make themselves fairly indestructible, much to Terry's annoyance. Amidst the episode, Terry also bonded with a young girl named Irene who also needed similar technology so she could go outdoors. There's a lovely sense of crossed wires as well as Terry mistakenly believes that Irene is romantically interested in him, only for the episode's resolution to reveal that she thinks of him more as a friend. 7/10

Episode 42: Inqueling

Unlike the likes of the Royal Flush Gang, Spellbinder or Shriek, there has been quite an episode distance since we've last seen Inque and this one was rather interesting. In this episode, she had to rely on her previously unmentioned daughter, Deanna in order to regain her strength and avoid both Batman and Winchell. Of course, it's Deanna who ends up becoming Inque's biggest problem as the episode demonstrates that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. It's quite an interesting episode, possibly Inque's strongest outing so far and there's potential with Deanna to return as an ongoing threat for Batman too if she can escape her mother's wrath. 8/10

Episode 43: Big Time

We had Inque's past come back to haunt her in the previous episode, so in this one we've got Terry's emerge when old juvie pal, Charlie or Big Time reappeared to get Terry to help him with a heist. When Terry had the sense to say no, his attempts of getting Charlie to go straight just ended up with the latter trying to steal on a bigger level. It's only when Charlie showed some physical side effects from a new type of plant fertilizer do things get a little more interesting. It's an okay episode and Charlie in his monstrous form is imposing enough but saying that, the episode is a bit weaker compared to the other batch I'm reviewing here. 6/10

Episode 44: Out Of The Past

Any episode or comic that has a writing from Paul Dini is usually going to go down well for me and this episode felt like the gift that kept on giving. First of all, the opening sequence where Bruce and Terry (for the former's birthday) attend a Batman musical to the moment where Bruce broods in the Batcave over pictures of Zatanna Zatara, Lois Lane, Selina Kyle/Catwoman and Barbara Gordon, the nods to the past are superb. Then an unsurprisingly ageless Talia Al Gul shows up and offers Bruce the ultimate birthday present - immortality. Bruce accepts the gift and when he decides to change his mind, it's revealed that Ras has actually taken over Talia's body (now that's messed up on way too many levels) and plans to take over Bruce's and inherit his money and so on, until Terry dons his Batman costume and rescue Bruce from that horrible fate. For a return episode, this was an inventive and creepy way to bring back both Talia and Ras and the last scene in the Batcave is wonderfully poignant. A superb episode. 10/10

Next blog I'll look into Speak No Evil, The Call Parts 1 & 2 and Betrayal.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

A Con Or Several

There's certain shows I do need to catch up on but here's a look at what I've seen for now though.

Daredevil: I have three episodes left to watch and right now, I kind of don't want this to end. The second half of this season has intensified both the Punisher and Elektra arcs so well and the returns of both Stick and Fisk have also added nicely to the mix. While it is a tad frustrating to see Matt, Karen and Foggy drift further apart from each other and the show continues to underuse Claire, this season is arguably stronger than the first one and I'm definitely looking forward to seeing how things end before we delve into Netflix's other Marvel shows.

Game Of Thrones: Season Six has been without a doubt one of the best seasons we've had from the HBO megahit and the last two episodes really upped the ante. The epic, battle filled penultimate episode which finally saw the much deserved demise of Ramsay was one thing but the finale where Cersei effectively wiped out all of her enemies and became queen was certainly another. Between those events, Sansa/Jon reclaiming Winterfell, Arya ticking another name off her list, Bran learning more of his family history and alliances made with Olenna/Ellaria/Daenerys/Yara, next season cannot come soon enough.

Gogglebox/Gogglesprogs: I have to admit that over the last while I haven't been actively watching the former show as much as I had been and when I found out that Channel 4 were going to be doing a junior version of the show, I was sceptical at best. Having watched at least two episodes of the younger version, I was somewhat hasty. Gogglesprogs might sound terrible on paper but onscreen, it genuinely seems to work. It helps that the kids in question seem to watch the same programmes the regular version does and it's also amusing seeing the younger generation rightfully comment on the Brexit situation when they weren't watching the likes of Made In Chelsea and The Lion King.

The Catch: The latest Shondaland show might have debuted on ABC back in Spring but on SkyLiving, they're nearly done with. The first six episodes have certainly had a similar level of Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder style OTTness with leading lady and private investigator, Alice Vaughn trying to get back at the man who conned her. The man in question being Christopher or Benjamin, who was also working with the charming Margot. And then the show added John Simm as Margot's volatile and trigger happy brother, Rhys and suddenly things got a whole lot more crazier. Certainly one to catch up on over the summer period.

- Taylor Lautner has been cast as Dr Cassidy Cascade for the second season of Scream Queens.
- Cheyenne Jackson will return for the sixth season of American Horror Story. The theme for the upcoming season is due to be revealed soon.
- Tom Felton has been cast as a regular for the third season of The Flash. He'll be playing CS Julian Dorn.
- Lynda Carter has been as the President of the US for the second season of Supergirl.
- Maggie Geha will play an older version of Ivy Pepper for Gotham's third season while James Carpinello has been cast as Mario Falcone.
- Maisie Richardson-Sellers will play Amaya Jiwe, the original Vixen and grandmother to Mari as a regular in Legends Of Tomorrow's second season.
- True Blood is returning as a Broadway musical.
- NBC still aren't giving up on having a Cruel Intentions series just yet.
- Felicity Huffman will be returning for the third season of American Crime.
- Netflix are planning a reboot for Lost In Space, due for release in 2018.

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Batman Beyond - Episodes 37-40 Reviews

A great selection of episodes as I watched the final batch of the second season and started the third season.

Episode 37: Payback

A vigilante episode of sorts. In this one, we've got a character named Payback whose mission is to go after the ones who don't appreciate the youngsters of Neo Gotham. At first, they seem like an ally but it doesn't take long for both Payback and Batman to clash over the former's methods of getting things done. Meanwhile there's a teenage support group run by Dr Stanton and Terry makes the grave mistake of assuming that Stanton's henchman Lewis is Payback before the real one is reveal. There's also some nice scenes between Terry and Bruce as the former showed some recklessness in this one. 7/10

Episode 38: Where's Terry?

The return of Shriek for this one but strangely enough, he's the least interesting element of the whole. Terry goes missing one night and it's soon enough revealed that he's trapped underground as Batman with a street kid named Dak. While the two of them strike up a spiky rapport and eventual alliance (Dak's aspirations of would be villainy go out the window when he encounters Shriek), there's also the delightful team up of Bruce and Max who bicker and throw each other under the bus when they weren't helping each other to eventually find Terry. Overall, a very diverting episode but a good one. 7/10

Episode 39: Ace In The Hole

Did anyone want a backstory episode for Ace the bat hound? Whether you did or didn't, the show felt the need for one and to be honest, I'm glad they went there. While there are similarities to Cat Scratch Fever (cruel animal testings/experiments etc), this was a great episode for showing us how Bruce met and took in poor Ace and it was nice to see Terry go out to rescue the dog as it showed how much their relationship had progressed and Boxer is certainly a hissable villain as well. As for his macabre experiments, that gigantic dog creature that nearly Terry looked terrible but other than that, this episode was Ace, pun intended. 8/10

Episode 40: King's Ransom

I might have mentioned in previous reviews how much I enjoy the Royal Flush gang as baddies and yet again, this was another episode where they truly came into their own. Funnily enough, this was also the episode that truly saw their downfall - Melanie truly had gone straight and had become a waitress, Jack spent time in the clink before being bailed at the end and Ace was put out of commission once and for all. The main conflict was between the King and Queen who spent more squabbling between kidnapping Paxton Powers, failing to kill Bruce Wayne and also fighting amongst themselves. If this is the last time we see this gang, then this was a hell of an episode to go out with. 9/10

Next blog I'll look into Untouchable, Inqueling, Big Time and Out Of The Past.

Friday, July 01, 2016

Batman Beyond - Episodes 33-36 Reviews

In this batch of episodes a robot wants more than it's programming allows, enemies become temporary allies, there's no fool in love like an old one and a video game takes a deadly turn.

Episode 33: Zeta

Something of an interesting episode where things open up with a boring teacher of sorts being targeted by some government agent types. The teacher then turns out to be a disguised assassin/robot named Zeta, who later assumes Max's identity. However it seems that Zeta isn't out to kill but more to start over and be in a position to make his own decisions. While Batman is right to be suspicious and Zeta's programming is quite hardwired, the episode does set up a lot, including a later spin-off named The Zeta Project. Overall, a pretty great episode. 7/10

Episode 34: Plague

Has it been that long since we've last encountered Stalker? It hasn't felt too long but for a return appearance, it's interesting to see him actually fighting with Batman instead of against him as he usually would. It seems that both Stalker and Batman's interests collide as they form an uneasy alliance to stop both Kobra and False Face. As teams up go, this episode had two pretty great ones and I did like that while we saw a better side to Stalker we didn't get an all too convenient redemptive arc, though it's possible one may happen in the future though. 8/10

Episode 35: April Moon

One of the two episodes from my watching that I wasn't too impressed by. A criminal gang blackmail a doctor into giving them some metallic/technological upgrades and the episode seems to be a power struggle between them and the doctor in question, with an unfortunate woman caught in the middle ... or is she? There are some nice comments on love, betrayal and power and so on but even Batman himself doesn't seem that too invested in this action unfolding. The final scene though is quietly sinister. 6/10

Episode 36: Sentries Of The Lost Cosmos

One of the dullest episodes we've had. Three geeks obsessed with a video game get manipulated by the backer of said game (Simon Harper) into nearly killing the creator (Eldon Michaels) by being part of the game to an extent. The nerd cliches are too strong in this one and Corey is one of those characters like Howard a few episodes back that I'm in no rush to see more of either. Also there were more Star Wars references than needed too for this one. 4/10

Next blog I'll look into Payback, Where's Terry, Ace In The Hole and King's Ransom.