Tag Archives: All in the Family

ONCE UPON A TIME: All in the Family (S 5: Ep 19 Recap)

throwing bolts

This week’s installment of Once is all about The FAM: sisters, daughters, mothers, fathers, sons, evil twin brothers we accidentally turn into sperm. There’s enough complicated familial exchanges in this hour to fill up an entire year of therapy sessions. And you thought YOUR PARENTS SCREWED YOU UP FOR LIFE?

Let’s review, shall we?

Sister from Another Mister

baby regina

Once upon a time, Princess Regina was super bored in the castle, because no one would play with her but a kind of ugly doll. And ugly dolls tend to be super poor conversationalists. Such is the lot of being an only child, Little Regina. It’s why my parents got me a cat . . .

piglet2

Of course, Regina is not really an only child. Unbeknownst to her, she’s been separated at birth from her ginger sis, Zelena, who not only has no one to play with her (not even ineloquent ugly dolls), she’s also POOR! (Oh the humanity.)

crying

One day, Regina finds her Mom, Cora’s magic wand and tries to put a spell on her ugly doll to turn the doll into an ugly sister for her to play with, which could be the start of a really gnarly horror movie.

But instead, Regina just passes out from her own magic, which seems a bit anticlimactic, if you ask me.

Suddenly, Cora is super concerned that Regina is going to die from her wand wielding, which seems a little plot convenient, especially since the “magic” Regina attempted was nothing more than a little Bibbity Bobbity Boo . . . the kind of spell Harry Potter could have conjured after about two days at Hogwarts. Nonetheless, Cora is “forced” to retrieve Little Zelena from her spot in Poor Town, so that she can magic her long lost sister back to health.

Little Zelena does this easily, also due to plot convenience, and Regina and Zelena quickly become the kind of friends that little girls of the same age always become, when they both have no other better playmate options . . . like cats for example.

cat friend

Then, Little Zelena opens Cora’s (wand) box with her magic fingers, which sounds kind of kinky and dirty, but is also a matter of, you guessed it, plot convenience. Regina pieces together that unless Zelena was totally evil (which, by the way, she is, just not yet), she wouldn’t be able to open Cora’s box unless she and Cora were somehow related!

Regina’s wish for a sister came true! She and Zelena excitedly run to tell Cora, who responds by, having Zelena taken away by guards and forcing both Regina and Zelena to drink potions that make them forget one another ever existed. Why, you ask? Because Cora believes that having siblings is for pussies, and that being lonely and talking only to ugly dolls all her life will make Regina a better person.

Cora is on Team Only Child, just like me. Hooray!

Just kidding, Cora sucks. But then again, we always knew that . . .

Bad Twin

the beat down

Speaking of sucks, back in Present Day Road to Hell, Evil Twin Prince James beats the crap out of Prince Charming in the middle of the street, while posing as sheriff (#PoliceBrutality) and then throws him in the pokey, for the clichéd reason every Evil Twin on Every Soap Opera Ever uses to beat the crap out of a sibling who shares their face. He wants Charming’s life!

The only problem is that, unlike Soap Opera Evil Twins, Prince James is a crap actor, one who can’t impersonate his brother for sh*t. To be fair, James easily fools Emma into believing he’s her dear old dad. This, despite the fact that Emma supposedly “has a super power that always lets her know when people are lying.” Fortunately, Emma left her Super Power back on Earth, along with her clean underwear and bras (Seriously, how are they managing so many wardrobe changes? Is the Road to Hell paved with mini malls and Victoria Secrets . . . probably.)

But then, James has to screw things up by pulling a gun on Charming’s friends, hand cuffing Emma. (Dammit James. You were so close to being a believable Charming . . . so close!)

Cruella arrives on the scene to help her beau suck less at pulling off the oldest television trope of all time, but quickly bores of the task, and ends up just doing what she always does, sassing the cast with clever one liners. She does manage to punch Emma in the face though. And seeing as Emma did murder Road to Hell’s resident Dog Whisperer, I’d say that move was pretty par for the course.

macking couple

macking couple reaction shot

Eventually, Charming breaks out of jail and enters into battle with James. The battle ends with Charming throwing James into the sperm water for the series’ weekly Sperm Donation portion of the season.

watching him die

“Look on the bright side, Dad. At least we will no longer have to suffer from the nauseating indignity of having to watch someone with your face making out with Cruella!”

At least, I think it was Charming who turned James into sperm. Wouldn’t it be positively hilarious if it was the other way around?

As long as James refrains from holding a gun to the rest of the cast members heads this time, they probably wouldn’t know the difference . . .

A Match Made in Hell

Elsewhere, Hades tries to woo Zelena by bringing her to the Road to Hell equivalent of that place you drove to with your high school boyfriend to make out in the back seat of his mom’s old car. You know Hades is doing his best to put the moves on Zelena at makeout point, because he’s doing that thing where he talks really slow, and puts about five-second pauses between every single word he utters.

hades head

“It’s . . . because . . . the . . . bad . . . Blue . . . Fire . . . CGI . . . Haircut . . . burned . . . off . . . the . . . part . . . of . . . my . . . brain . . . associated . . . with . . . talking . . . in . . . normal . . . speed.”

Zelena is falling for it, Hook Line and Sinker. She seems particularly ready to let those wicked green Road to Hell Victoria Secret’s panties drop, when Hades tells her that all she has to do is make out with him, and they can live Happily Ever After in Storybrooke, while the whole rest of the cast rots in Hell. Smooth pick up line, Hades. Boys, please feel free to try that one on for size, next time you are trying to get laid.

deserve real thing

coca-cola_its_the_real_thing_coke_9_1970

 

It does beg the question though, what kind of show would Season Six of Once Upon a Time be if the only two characters in it were Hades and Zelena? Here’s a guess . . .

Mother Knows Best

i been watching you

Regina waits up for Zelena, after her date, to try to talk her out of giving up her virginity to the Dark Lord of the Underworld on the first date, because he won’t buy the cow, if he can get the milk for free. Just kidding! Regina’s doing it, because she doesn’t want to be stuck for all eternity in the Road to Hell, while her sister and her boyfriend reenact the 70’s sitcom All in the Family upstairs, only without Meathead and Sally Struthers to keep the comedy from getting too dark and racist.

shoot in head

Zelena isn’t too keen on taking relationship advice from Regina for obvious reasons. So Regina does what any self-respecting little sis who is getting no respect from her sibling would do, she rats her out to Mommy!

Unfortunately, Mommy is a bit tied up at the moment, carrying out Hades punishment of her, which basically involves carrying around pillows in a wheel barrow all day and pretending they are heavy. Fortunately, there’s a Hook for that . . .

hook my fairy better

surprise

And by that I mean, Captain Hook to the rescue!

Mama Cora’s first suggestion as to how to keep Zelena from giving it up to Hades is to make her drink a potion that causes her to forget his existence. If this works, it will turn the second half of Once into that movie with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, where he keeps having to reinvent their relationship every single day, because she keeps conveniently forgetting he exists every time she falls asleep, which, by the way, is what most of us try to do when it comes to some of Adam Sandler’s movies . . .

jack and kill

Zelena won’t take the bait though. So Cora is forced to take more drastic measures. She allows her daughters to remember their past together, the one she stole from them all those years ago. And then they all proceed to hug it out.

all three

This one act of kindness after an eternity of being the Worst Person Ever on Cora’s part earns her a spot in Heaven, which kind of makes Heaven seem like the public rest rooms in Port Authority Bus Terminal in NYC. They’ll let ANYBODY IN!

cora 2

cora 1

After Cora goes to Heaven, Regina has a change of heart and decides to tell Zelena to accept Hades proposal, because life is too short to miss out on True Love . . . also because, apparently no matter how much awful crap you do in your life, if you can manage to be nice for a few seconds, you’ll get into Heaven anyway . . .

hold hands and watch

You Got Panned!

Zelena rushes off to endure some more Really Slowly Spoken Romantic monologues by Hades, when she is captured by Rumpelstiltskin and . . . wait for it . . . his awful dad forever stuck in the body of a twelve-year old boy, Peter Pan.

wicked but

wicked but worse

Oh oh! It looks like “True Love” is going to have to wait another week to blossom inside the Lord of the Underworld’s heart . . . and pants.

ouat 4.1 blue balls

Until then, My Dearies!

Cross-posted at Happy Nice Time People.

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Whatever Happened to TV Theme Songs? (THE SEQUEL)

A little while back,  I wrote a blog entry entitled  Whatever Happened to TV Theme Songs?  In it, I complained about the fact that most television programs today seem to have done away with theme songs, opting instead to use a few bland instrumental chords to introduce their show.  Some shows, like Lost or The Vampire Diaries,  have scrapped their opening sequences entirely.

When I was done bitching, I chose ten theme songs and opening sequences that I really enjoyed from my TV watching past, and shared them with anyone who might be interested.  And you guys seemed to like it.  (By “like it,” I mean you “clicked on it.”  For all I know, you may have took one look at the theme songs I chose, said “That TV Recapper Girl  is a total Poopyhead,” and slammed your browser in my face.)

But here’s the thing. . . .   There are SO MANY really great theme songs and opening sequences out there, that I DIDN’T get to show you.  And, for that reason, I thought it might be fun to try this again.  So, without further adieu, I present to you, ten MORE old school TV theme songs (in no particular order) that I find pretty cool.

1) All in the Family

All right.  So I can’t really say that this show was part of my childhood.  After all, it was already off the air, by the time I was born.  But I catch it in reruns ALL THE TIME, mostly just to watch the opening sequence.  I’m not entirely sure why I like it so much.  Perhaps it’s because there is something about Archie and Edith Bunker that reminds me a lot of my paternal grandparents.  Also, any opening sequence that involves that much ridiculously bad, off-key singing, is pretty cool in my book . . .

2) The Jeffersons

Like All in the Family, its spinoff, The Jeffersons, aired a smidgeon before my TV watching time.  But I watch it in reruns whenever I can find it, basically because I think its Sherman Hemsley is “the bees knees.”  He could just be standing around doing nothing, and I would find it absolutely hilarious.  Sherman is just so cute!  To me, he’s kind of like a black Danny Devito . . .

Did I mention that the song in the opening sequence is super catchy?  I still find myself singing it out loud every time I move into a new apartment, much to the extreme displeasure of anyone unlucky enough to be helping me move.  Just listen, and I dare you not to sing along!

3) Roseanne

This “smarter than it looked” show, about a working class family, was on the air, pretty much throughout my childhood.  During its nine-year run, the show’s opening sequence underwent nearly annual tweaks and changes.  Ironically, my favorite opening sequences for Roseanne came near the end of its run, when the show itself was losing some of the good humor and sharp writing of earlier seasons.  The opening sequences for the last two seasons of Roseanne, featured these really cool character morphs, illustrating how (for better or worse) the characters had aged during the show’s long run.

My favorite morph was for the Becky character, who, during the show’s nine years, was played by two different actresses, Lecy Goranson and Saarah Chalke (Scrubs).  The sequence morphs the two together, as if they are the same person.  My second favorite morph was for Roseanne herself, who made some really bad hair and plastic surgery choices during that decade.  In one picture in particular, her entire face seems to droop downward in a perverse, overly-botoxed sneer that actually used to give me nightmares.  When you see it, you’ll know why.

(Unfortunately, there is no embedding on this video.  So, you have to click the internal link, to watch it on YouTube.  Sorry!)

4) The Wonder Years

I loved this show when I was a little kid, for so many reasons.  For one, I thought Fred Savage was a total hottie.  I wanted to be Winnie Cooper, so that I could date him.  If my first TV crush was Jonathan Taylor Thomas from Home Improvement, Fred Savage comes in a close second.  Also, the dad on the show, Dan Luria, looked a lot like my dad, which I thought was pretty cool.

And, of course, the opening sequence was amazing!  You see, I was an only child, and, from what I gather, not a particularly photogenic one.  Therefore, we never had home videos in my family.  (I don’t even think we owned a video camera.)  So, when I would watch The Wonder Years, as a kid, I liked to pretend that Kevin Arnold’s home videos were mine.  Sometimes I would even reenact Winnie’s parts, as I watched  . . . It was kind of embarrassing.

5) Blossom

You know what?  When I said that NO home videos exist of me as a child, that’s not entirely true.  I do distinctly remember one video that was taken just before one of my dance recitals.  In it, 7-year old me BORED MY POOR FAMILY TO TEARS, by suiting up in my dance costume, and reenacting the ENTIRE RECITAL, casting myself in all the crucial roles, of course. 

 Funny looking costume?  Bad goofy dancing?  I imagine it looked a lot like this . . .

6) Dinosaurs

The things you learn when researching a blog entry!  I distinctly remember watching this program as a kid, during ABC’s fabulous Friday night TGIF lineup.  The show was sort of a live action Flintstones, only all the characters in it were dinosaurs.  Now that I think about it, the whole thing was a little bizarre . . .

But regardless of the quality of the show itself, I remember really loving what I thought was the show’s theme song.  Today, I looked up the theme song to Dinosaurs on YouTube, and learned that what I THOUGHT was the theme song, wasn’t the theme song at all.  It was merely a song, and accompanying video, that was featured during one of the show’s episodes.  The actual theme song kind of sucked.  But THIS song was SO GOOD and SO FUNNY, that I’ve decided to share it with you instead . . .

7) Salute Your Shorts

By now, you already know how I feel about theme songs that  feature ridiculously bad and off-key singing.  So, of course, I simply had to include this theme song on the list, from a Nickelodeon show about a very poorly managed sleepaway camp . . .

8 ) Step by Step

Yet another installment from ABC’s TGIF lineup makes the list at Number 8.  Step by Step was kind of a revamped Brady Bunch for us ’90s kids to enjoy.  It starred Suzanne Somers — as the mom of a blended family — one who looked remarkably similar to Chrissy Snow from Three’s Company.

Around the time this was on the air, I was spending a lot of free time hanging out at amusement parks with my friends.  So, of course, I absolutely adored this amusement park-themed opening sequence.

9) Freaks and Geeks

I’m cheating a bit here, because I didn’t actually watch this show during its initial run.  Rather, I caught it recently on Netflix, and was amazed by how brilliant it was, and how many of its cast members (and writing staff) eventually went on to do bigger and better things.  If, by chance, you are interested in my take, on the show itself, you can find that here. 

However, right now, I am here to talk about its kick ass opening sequence, which features the rebel anthem Bad Reputation by Joan Jett, and accurately portrays the extreme awkwardness and pure horror that is Yearbook Picture Day!

10) What I Like About You

Even though it has been off the air for a few years now, I still enjoy watching repeats of this classic WB show about two very different sisters living under one roof, and navigating life and love in New York City.  On the surface, it looks like your typical cheesy teen romcom.  However, Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes made the show way better than it should have been, with their amazing on-screen chemistry and fabulous comedic timing. 

But, of course, my favorite episodes of the show were the ones from later seasons.  After all, these focused on Amanda Byne’s character, Holly, and her relationship with on-again, off-again boyfriend, Vince, played by MY TV boyfriend, the painfully gorgeous, Nick Zano.  This guy doesn’t get nearly enough work these days in my opinion . . .

Oh, and did I mention that the show’s opening sequence features the cast riding and dancing around Times Square to the tune of Lilix’s awesome cover of the song What I Like About You?

So, there you have it folks — ten more TV theme songs to add to my collection of nostalgic television awesomeness.  Have I missed any of your favorites?

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Filed under 80s television, 90s television, music, television, TV theme songs