Just Talking About TV Shows I’m Watching

I’ve written about specific TV shows before, dedicating whole posts to spreading the good word, and in my Monthly Look Aheads, I’ll often namedrop a few shows I’m looking forward to, but I realized I don’t often elaborate on some of the middle-of-the-road or older shows I’m watching. And since I don’t watch shows live too much these days, I’m not often tweeting my thoughts the way I used to either. So here’s this. Just me talking about the TV shows I’m choosing to consume for better or for worse.

Watching TV gif.

Legends Of Tomorrow – currently in S7, this show is, without a doubt, the best and perhaps only decent thing in the Arrowverse still. I think its best seasons have come and gone, but I still really enjoy the rag-tag team of misfits and their shenanigans, even after so many years.

Batwoman – currently in S3, this show isn’t the worst. I think Javicia Leslie did great taking over the role of Batwoman, and I like the dynamics of the team. Sometimes the drama is a little too corny, and I’m worried that having Luke become a hero is step one in the common Arrowverse pattern of everyone eventually being a hero, but so far, I don’t hate watching this!

A Million Little Things – currently in S4, this show is very dumb but my mother and I watch it just for jokes. It started out heartfelt and has its moments even now, but it’s gotten off the rails. Now it’s just funny to see the characters collectively take on every hardship imaginable in the most dramatized way. Cancer? Mental health crisis? Late in life sexuality changes? Injury? Failed adoption? Affairs? This show has it all and more.

The Big Leap – currently in S1, this show is really just worming its way deep into my heart. It’s new, obviously, but even from the first episode I knew it was going to be something I adore. If you like dancing and a healthy mix of comedy and cheesy drama, I really recommend it. I hope it gets renewed for a second season.

The Big Leap cast.

The Morning Show – currently in S2, this AppleTV show is fine. Great cast, sure, but S1 really had a story and I feel like the second season is just struggling in the aftermath to be as relevant or exciting. It’s still an interesting watch, and I watch this one with my mother too, so that makes it better.

Doom Patrol – currently in S3, this show is wild. It’s like Legends Of Tomorrow but way goofier and unpredictable. Honestly, most of the time I have no idea what’s going on in the season in terms of an overall story because whatever there is is always so complicated and random, but the characters are so fun together that I don’t mind. This show is not for everyone but if you like DC comics and want a superhero show that’s unlike any other, this is it.

Stargirl – currently in S2, this show is alright. It’s nothing special in terms of the genre, but it’s fine. I enjoy it enough to keep watching, but I certainly don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. And when I do think about it, it’s just me thinking about how Pat is the best character, hands down.

Succession – currently in S3, this show continues to deliver quality drama from an array of funny but awful people. It’s wildly fascinating to watch, and this third season, though only a few episodes in, is shaping up to be as exciting and dramatic as ever.

Kendall and Greg on Succession gif.

Upcoming in the next month

Dickinson – its third and final season begins in November, and I hope it ends well with Emily getting the peace she’s seeking. This show is incredibly underrated, but it hasn’t overstayed its welcome, which is good.

The Flash – going into its 8th season, this show needs to end. Like, yesterday. I like most of the characters enough, but the plots are just silly at this point. It’s all just villains that don’t feel threatening, drama that doesn’t matter, and arcs I just don’t care to see. But I keep watching. For some reason.

The Flash Eye Roll Gif.
Me watching The Flash every week, being disappointed.

Do you watch any of these shows? Discuss with me in the comments! These are all week-to-week shows, and I like keeping up with them rather than binging them. Is there a show you think I’d enjoy? One TV show on my metaphorical list that I’ve been meaning to start is The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, so one day I’ll get around to that.

And that’s about it for me in terms of my TV watching. I know it seems like a lot but it’s actually down from what it has been in previous years, and I watch almost all of these at double speed, so keeping up isn’t too hard.

Maybe I’ll do a post like this again in the future when there are different shows on my roster.

 

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My Favourite Fictional Cats

I watched The Mummy trilogy for the first time recently, and that scene in the first movie where they use a cat to scare off the Mummy had me thinking about how Carol did the same thing in Captain Marvel, and that got me thinking about Goose and other great cats from media. So here we are. I love cats and there have been some great ones in movies and TV, so here’s me talking about ones I like because I want to.

  • Goose (from Captain Marvel) – Goose makes this list even though he is not technically a cat. He was just a fun addition to the movie. Using him to ward off the Skrull, his relationship with Fury, and the eventual reveal of his species was just plain fun. I had this picture as my phone lock screen for over a year.
    Captain Marvel Goose poster.
  • Salem (from Sabrina The Teenage Witch) – Salem from the Melissa Joan Hart TV show was great. Sassy, chatty, funny, and just a great character, despite looking very much like a fake cat on a TV show that did not have a budget to do better. They did not do the legacy of this cat justice in the gritty Netflix version.
    Salem the cat gif.
  • Hobbes (from Calvin And Hobbes) – I grew up reading these comics before I even had the brain to comprehend most of what I was reading. Hobbes is a genuine ride or die friend, and his adventures with Calvin were and still are always a delight to read. He’s also wonderfully complex, sometimes being wise and thoughtful while also sometimes being just a furry goofball with a one-track mind.
    A Calvin and Hobbes comic.
  • Lord Tubbington (from Glee) – Brittany’s fat cat started as just a funny gag that I adored when it was sprinkled in. I wish the show kept it as just a mild gag rather than leaning into the absurdity of him a little too much in later seasons, but goodness knows there were bigger issues plaguing Glee. Anyway, I think fondly about Lord Tubbington and the Fondue For Two theme plays in my head often.
    Lord Tubbington being kissed gif.
  • Cheshire Cat (from Alice In Wonderland) – I never really watch the animated version of the story, but I really liked the live-action movie, and in particular, I really liked Chesh. The animated cat was creepy, but this live-action cat was a perfect mix of cute and creepy and worked so well with the slightly cyberpunk world of the movie.
    Cheshire Cat GIF.
  • Mooch (from Mutts) – Mutts is an adorable comic that I enjoy reading in the newspaper. One main character, Mooch, is a cute, adventurous cat with a slight speech impediment that makes him even more adorable. His favourite toy is a pink sock, and I love when that sock appears in the comics.
    Mooch and the Little Pink Sock comic.
  • Puss In Boots (from Shrek 2) – I was a kid when Shrek was in its heyday. I remember when Puss was introduced in the second movie, perfectly appealing to kids and adults watching. Those big, cute cat eyes contrasting the sword and fighting words made for a hilarious character that remains iconic even years later.
    Puss in boots gif.
  • Skitty (from Pokemon) – There are many cat Pokemon, and Skitty isn’t even the most known one (that’s Meowth), but look at this thing!!! Adorable!!! I would die for it!!!
    Skitty Pokemon Gif.

Lastly, here are some honourable mentions to cats I never really connected with in a meaningful way but I respect: Tigger, Pink Panther, Garfield, the Cowardly Lion, and Sylvester.

I know there are some other great fictional felines out there, so let me know which ones you enjoy!

 

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On Media Polarizing Fans

I consume a lot of media. I am a fan of a lot of media. I’ve extensively seen fandoms grow, die, explode, and more. It’s fascinating to me. While it’s always a treat to see fans come together for better or for worse the way they did recently on Tumblr during the Supernatural nonsense, one thing that’s been very interesting to me recently is fandom divide.

Personally, I did not love the recent Marvel show Loki. Out of the three Disney+ Marvel shows so far, it is my least favourite without a doubt. I know people who did like it, and that’s great for them, but I did not. And while most people in my life are able to discuss the show and our differing opinions in a reasonable, mature way, it was quite an experience to then go on Twitter and see such anger and hate for aspects of the show, with most of it surrounding Sylvie and the relationship she had with Loki. What’s more, is that it went beyond simply not loving the show or maybe not loving it compared to other shows, but people got so personally angry and passionate about their stance that the fandom was a messy, dramatic, unhappy place. And I didn’t even seek it out. This is just what I saw on my timeline! I can only imagine what it was like in the metaphorical trenches.

It's brutal out here gif.

I don’t think Marvel purposely set out to make a show that’d rile up fans so much. I think they knew that any love interest for Loki would be a point of interest for better or for worse, but the way people got so heated and analyzed everything so much was probably beyond expectations. At the end of the day, it is just a TV show. I’ve been attached to characters/shows/plots/whatever too, but to let it ruin my mindset so much that I go online and be constantly angry about it is just a tad step too far, I think.

However, similar to the phrase “all publicity is good publicity,” I have to ask: is all fandom good fandom? While I don’t believe the Loki showrunners planned for a large fandom divide, sometimes it clearly is a publicity tactic. Shall we all think back to that year of Team Edward vs Team Jacob? All the merch sales that campaign brought in, all the schoolyard fights that were started…the polarization and the passion did that. Even having Hogwarts Houses that people identify and group into can be an example of this. In an era where hashtags can affect a show’s renewal chances, it would be a smart move from a piece of media to purposely polarize the fandom and start conversations. Because people love thinking they’re right and people love telling others they’re right, so social media and the unhinged culture of fandoms is perfect for that.

The Internet Is A Breeding Ground For Freaks gif.

In fairness, I can’t think of many other recent shows where there was something that unintendedly divided a fandom for the worse, so it’s certainly not like A Thing that’s overtaking media, but it’s interesting when it does happen.

What are your thoughts on this subject?

 

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Monthly Look Ahead: September 2021

Well, this summer has flown by. But I’m not too sad about it because, as you’ll see from the first three bullets I have here, September is a very musical month, and it should not be news to you readers that I do love me some musicals. There’s actually a lot of interesting media out this month that I’m looking forward to. Usually I try to have at least one not-media thing on this list, but not this time!

monthly look ahead logo

  • A recording of the musical Come From Away, starring most if not all of the original cast, is out on AppleTV on the 10th. I love this show so much, and I highly recommend getting a box of tissues and watching it. It’s so sweet and so well done in a simple way.
  • The Dear Evan Hansen movie is coming out on the 24th. It’s kind of weird that Ben Platt is still playing a teenager, and I’ll be interested to see how this show translates to a movie given that the music is kind of deep and not as dance-y as most, but I’m still excited. I do really like this show.
  • After getting delayed several times because of the pandemic, the movie of Everybody’s Talking About Jamie is finally coming out via Amazon. I only got into this show last fall, but the music is very good, and it’s a fun show, so I’m looking forward to it! (Also on Amazon this month but it doesn’t warrant its own bullet is a Cinderella musical. No one asked for another live action Cinderella, and I can’t say I’m a Camilla Cabello fan, but it is a musical, so I likely will watch it eventually).
  • Though I know very little about the character, Marvel’s Shang-Chi is out on the 4th, and I am excited to see it because a) there’s a dragon(!), b) it’s starring a Canadian, and c) it’s Marvel, and Marvel movies rarely disappoint.
    The dragon in Shang-Chi.
  • On the small screen, The Morning Show is back for a second season. As heavy as the first season was, it was very entertaining for my mother and I, so we’re looking forward to more. Other small screen returns this month include A Million Little Things and Doom Patrol.
  • I can’t even believe it’s time for fall TV already! Maybe because Arrowverse shows aired all summer it feels like there wasn’t a break (as if 2020 wasn’t a break in itself), but I’m looking at the calendar and yes, new shows will be starting! There are only a few I have my eye on, though, including The Big Leap on the 20th, and maybe a few NBC shows that I’ve yet to see trailers for.
  • The Emmys as well as a weird, delayed, and chopped version of The Tonys are this month.

Aaand that’s it (or, that’s all I can remember to include. It is 1am at the time of writing). It’s wild that this was supposed to be the month where I get my second vaccine, but Canada expedited things so I’ve been in the clear for a while now! I’ve been to a party!

What’s revving your engines this September?

 

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We Need More Pure Characters

When it comes to characters in media, there is a lot to say for having characters who are flawed or suffering in ways that are relatable. Media is getting more and more diverse, and it’s great that so many people can see a character and identify strongly with their looks and behaviours and whatnot. But media has the power not just to show us things that we can relate to, but the power to show us things we want to be. Or people we want to be. Better people.

I watched AppleTV’s Ted Lasso a few weeks ago. I started it one day after work thinking it’d be a good show that I can watch whenever I have a bit of time to kill. But I ended up finishing it that night because I fell so quickly in love with it and could not stop (also it’s only one season so far and I watched at double speed). On top of being a quality funny and original show, I just adored the character of Ted. He is everything. Always chipper, kind-hearted, looking for the best in things, and just someone I want so much to be. I wish I had that pep and charisma and positivity.

Ted Lasso GIF.

A similar character is Leslie Knope from Parks And Recreation. Leslie was always trying to help others and always had a good attitude. For Christmas a few years ago, my mom got me a necklace that says “Be the LK of whatever you do” which is a quote I just love and genuinely try to live by. Leslie didn’t have a glamourous job and didn’t get recognition, but she loved what she did and loved how she did it and was such a pleasant person to watch. No matter what job I have or who I interact with, I want to be the same.

My necklace.

This is not to say that Leslie and Ted don’t have flaws or traits that maybe aren’t the best, but overall, they’re just such pure, positive characters, and if we all were a bit more like them, we’d all be better off.

I guess it’s hard in dramas or action movies to have these kinds of characters, so they are better suited to comedies, but I just feel like movie studios and TV networks need to try harder to deliver us purity in this way because it’s so enjoyable to watch. I need more than a comic relief character or a character who’s strong and/or sassy. I want more characters that make me want to be a better person and make me reevaluate life. I want characters who are nice and genuinely so. It feels like a lot to ask, but I don’t think so.

So there’s Leslie and Ted, and but here are a few other pure characters:

  • Phil Dunphy from Modern Family
  • Ray Palmer from Legends Of Tomorrow
  • Sue Heck from The Middle

I tried to think of some from movies too, but I guess you just don’t get enough time in a movie to develop a wonderful pure character that is on the same level as these above TV characters that we’ve grown to love for hours if not years. The only one I could think of was Dane from Our Friend. 

I don’t care that being as positive and pure as these fictional characters may be unrealistic or incredibly hard for us average people living on this hellscape of a planet. It’s nice to see and it really helps me feel like I at least have the potential to be better.

I'll Try To Do Better And I Hope You Will Too GIF.

If you’ve yet to see Ted Lasso or Parks And Recreation or even Modern Family, Legends Of Tomorrow, The Middle, or Our Friend, I highly, highly recommend them, and not just for the purity factor. They’re all quality entertainment options.

Please inform me of other pure characters in the comments.

P.S. This post was partly inspired by this post about Ted Lasso being a good guy. Give it a read!

P.P.S. Play my Fall TV guessing game if you haven’t yet! Let’s see who can best guess the fates!

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