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A Bad Day for Gingers – A Recap of Once Upon a Time’s “Family Business”

cover image blondie

Sorry Brunettes, Gingers, Silver Foxes, and Raven-Haired Beauties! This week on Once, if your hair is not the color of sunshine, Tweety Bird or scrambled eggs, this woman wants you dead . . . like yesterday.

ouat 4.2 disney snow

“Is it too late to invest in some bleach?”

She’s Snow Hitler, basically . . .

Elsewhere in Fairytale Land, Belle did a pretty crappy thing to Anna for a pebble and an even crappier thing to Rumpelstiltskin for a hat box.

terrible dream

“Oh Rumple! I just had this horrible nightmare in which I acted like a total asshole for an entire episode . . . oh, you mean that wasn’t a dream? Crap!”

And Hook? Well, he didn’t do very much at all, save looking sexy and making some wry comments about how gosh darn incestuous Storybrooke has become . . .

everyone in town is related making eyes at eachother

making eyess

once a child

Still so pretty though . . .

So hug your favorite Rock Troll and steer clear of evil mirrors that talk too much, because it’s time for another Once Upon a Time Recap . . .

(You can check out the rest of this recap here.)

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Filed under ABC, Once Upon a Time

Beauty and the Bestiary – A Recap of Teen Wolf’s “Abomination”

Dating Profile for Lizard Thingy, a.k.a The Kainaima

Age: Better not tell you now . . .

Sex: Sure!  If you’re still alive, by the time I’m done with you.

Likes: Long walks on the beach, cars, paralyzed prey, lacrosse

Dislikes: Abusive dads, Argents (even Hot Black ones), Douchey Grease Monkeys, and Werewolves

Fears: Water, Mirrors .  . . and Stiles?

Hey there, Werebangers!  Of all the episodes of Teen Wolf we’ve seen so far, this one was by far the most educational.

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Let’s see . . . we learned the difference between “Bestiary” and “Bestiality.”

We learned about a creature called the Kanaima, who’s SO deadly, it can instantly kill anything it touches, yet somehow has crushingly low self-esteem, and can’t even go in the Kiddie Pool without a pair of Swimmies.

We learned how to edit boring film footage of someone sleeping to make it EVEN MORE BORING.

And finally, we learned that Stiles is the most awesome dude on the planet . . .

Then again, we already knew that.

So, without further adieu, I bring to you “Abomination.”  Let the learning begin!

[As always, everything in this recap that you think is pretty, belongs to Andre, Screencapper Extraordinaire.  Without him, these recaps would be super lame.]

“Killers come in all ages . . . sizes and shapes.”

“Be afraid . . .be VERY afraid.”  That’s what The Vet tells the Argents (and Scott before them), when they enter his lair at the beginning of the episode.  And with good reason!  Because there, lounging before him on the operating table, is Hot Black Argent, who’s looking a little less “Hot Black” these days, and a bit more “Pre-Chewed / Beef Jerkified.”

“I’ve always wanted my stomach muscles to look ‘cut,’ but this is ridiculous.” 

The Vet almost gleefully describes to all of us the rather unpleasant way in which Hot Black Argent met his Maker, despite the fact that (1) we saw it happen; and (2) it’s kind of obvious to anyone with a pair of eyes.

“Oh really, is that, how he died?  I thought it was from old age.” 

By far, the creepiest aspect of this autopsy is the when The Vet shows the Argents the teeny tiny scratch on the back of Hot Black Argent’s neck.  For one thing, his neck makes a really disturbing cracking sound, when it’s turned.

Noisiest . . . neck . . . EVER!

 For another, apparently that little scratch contains something called a paralytic toxin.  This means that, rather then merely killing its prey outright, Lizard Thingy completely paralyzed Hot Black Argent first . . . and then forced him to lie on the floor, alive and immobile, so that he could WATCH himself be sliced open into ten strips of bacon.

“Tasty,” you might say.

But actually, contrary to popular belief.  24-year old Hot Black Argents simply aren’t a part of Lizard Thingy’s balanced breakfast.

“Killing may be it’s only purpose,” warns The Vet sagely.

Well . . . it sure isn’t trying to start itself a Lacrosse Team . . .

“That’s gonna cost you extra.”

Now, based on what we’ve learned so far, about our pal, Lizard Thingy, he seems to have a real penchant for killing Hot 24-year Old Blue Collar types . . . and Dawson Leery’s Dad.

We meet Victim Number 3 at an Auto Body Shop, where he’s fleecing poor Stiles out of his hard-earned cash to fix the latter’s rat trap of a car.

Like Hot Black Argent, Victim #3, a former high school lacrosse player, of course, is sexy, in a kind of Douchey Grease Monkey sort of way.  In fact, if this was a different type of show, he’d probably end up being The Lead, as opposed to The Guy Who Ends Up with a Car on His Torso.

As Stiles storms out of the shop, he makes the mistake of putting his hand on the door handle .  . . something I learned not to do in any public place, without a paper towel, when I was like five.

Seriously!  Door handles are nasty.  Have you ever watched one of those news programs, where they swab them for germs?  Put it this way, your hands would be cleaner, after fondling a toilet seat in a gas station . . .

Anywhoo . . . this door handle is particularly unsanitary, because it contains Lizard Thingy Cooties, which render Stiles’ ten little fingers completely immobile.  (Though, honestly, I only remember him touching the door with one hand.)

Though Stiles won’t be doing the Robot Dance, anytime soon.  He’s got it easy.  Douchey Grease Monkey, alas, will suffer a far worse fate.  He gets the Full Lizard Thingy Neck Massage, and can do nothing but stare up at the sky sadly, as the last piece of crap car,  he will ever work on crushes him from below.  Ouch!

“It should have been a Lexus.” 

Somehow, Stiles manages to dial 911, with uncooperative fingers, but not before he gets to have a little Meet and Greet with Lizard Thingy, who pops by to say Howdy.  He’s a really sociable dude, that Lizard Thingy . . .

Grandpa Not-John McCain wants you to trust him . . .

You ever notice how much Granpoppy Argent resembles a certain aging former U.S. presidential candidate?

In fact, were it not for the occasional Irish brogue slipping into his dialogue, I’d probably assume that the Senator was moonlighting as a werewolf hunter on MTV . . .

Allison is sneaking out of the house to meet Scott, because she got his Very Secret Message Written in Car Window Sweat.

Those crazy kids and their new fangled technology!  Personally, if I was sneaking out for a late night leg humping session with my doggie boyfriend, I’d probably opt for an old fashioned form of secret communication . .  . like a text message . . . but that’s just me.

Grandpoppy Not-John McCain catches Allison on her way to meet Scott, and impedes her progress, long enough for Scott to look all sad and emo, as he stares off into the stars . . . alone. 

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But back to Grandpoppy and Allison.  There’s just something about the way these Argent’s communicate.  One second they are all smiles, and nostalgic stories about the past .  . . the next, they are barking in your ear about things like “trust” and “conviction” with crazy pants, “I’m gonna eat you with a side salad, and a glass of milk,” looks in their eyes.  Then, just as quickly, they are smiling again.

“I never should have gotten involved with that crazy Palin women.  Oops.  Sorry, umm . . . what’s my line again?” 

In short, if I was an Argent like Allison, I’d probably wish I was adopted .  . .

“I think it knew me.”

Back at the Crime Scene, Stiles isn’t quite ready to tell his Sheriff Dad that the Lizard Thingy ate his car repair man.  But Sheriff Stilinski knows his son well enough to know he’s hiding something, and gives him one of “those looks.”  If you have a dad, you know exactly what kind of Look I’m talking about.

Nope . . . not that one . . .

That’s the one . . .

Suffice it to say, if I was Allison Argent, not only would I want to be adopted, I’d want to be adopted into Stiles’ family.  Because his dad’s just a super sweet heart, who genuinely cares for his son.  No Crazy Eyes on that one!

When Scott picks Stiles up from the scene (The latter’s car has been impounded as evidence, due to it’s having Bits of Douchey Grease Monkey slathered across it’s underbelly), Stiles describes his experience to his friend in detail, admitting that Lizard Thingy seemed to . . . know Stiles personally.

Worst Werewolves EVER!

You ever watch one of those sports movies, with the ragtag bunch of loser athletes, who can’t play for crap for the first hour and the half of the film, but suddenly pull it together just in time for the Big Game?  Well Derek’s Wolf Pack is kind of like those guys . . . only less inspiring.

We watch as Lame-o Isaac, and even Lamer-O Erica try in vain to attack Derek, only to have him boredly swat them away with his hand, like pesky flies.

Boyd, of course, doesn’t have to play.  He just gets to watch.  Teacher’s Pet!

Since Werewolf Erica’s weapons of choice seem to be her boobs and her tongue, she tries to shove the latter down Derek’s throat to distract him.

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Though I can’t say I blame the girl for trying . . .

. . . this whole one-note, “I’m suddenly hot, so now I throw myself at everything with a weiner,” thing is getting a bit old.

Derek doesn’t seem to think so though.  Though he rejects Erica’s advances (but only after making out with her for three glorious minutes) . . .

. . . he informs her that he has “someone else in mind for her.”  My initial thought is that Derek is going to have Erica seduce either Scott or Stiles, in hopes of indoctrinating them into his Lame Leather Wearing Wolf Pack.  but since both men seem 100% immune to her charms, I’m hoping his plan is a bit more clever than that . . .

After all, the new Alpha has a Lizard Thingy to defeat, and Argents to overcome.  This is really no time to play a werewolf version of The Bachelorette . . .

“What’s your brand of psychosis?”

Here’s something we learned about Lydia.  She is NOT a morning person.  Breaking mirrors with your bear hands isn’t exactly the sign of a well-adjusted teen.

“Why can’t I just blame my crazy on PMS, like everyone else?”

No wonder Lydia’s mom, a.k.a. Tyler Lockwood’s mom, wants her to see the school shrink, a.k.a Witch Emily / Maya from Pretty Little Liars, who’s actually playing a character that’s her own age, for a change.

“Please don’t kill me off.  They always kill me off on these teen shows . . . usually around the same time they learn that I’m 40 22.” 

 While waiting to have her head shrunk, Lydia gets hit on by creepy dude, who’s sole purpose for being in this episode seems to be as Lizard Thingy Suspect Number 5.

Hey, any of you guys ever watch The O.C.?  Remember Psycho Oliver?  Yeah, Marissa met him outside a shrink’s office too  . . . 

In side shrinky-poo’s office, Lydia notes that sometimes the people closest to you can hold you back the most.

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 Shrinkypoo wants to know who told her that, but Lydia doesn’t remember.  My guess is that these Very Important Words of Wisdom come from her good pal, Uncle Alpha . . . a.k.a the guy who’s been traipsing around her mind with his gross gnarly feet for the past three or so episodes . . .

Elsewhere, Stiles is telling Scott how much he loves him, and how sorry he is about missing their date last night.

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 It’s about time those two admitted their unspoken passion for one another.

But wait . . . just kidding.  He’s delivering a message for Allison . . . the Juliet to Scott’s Puppy Romeo.

There’s a running joke in the episode where Stiles has to keep dashing back and forth delivering messages between Scott and Allison, because apparently, they can’t trust those pesky Argents not to go through their cell phones.

In addition to delivering messages of love, Stiles also needs to pass along messages about the Elusive “Bestiary,” (not to be confused with Bestiality, though I wouldn’t put that past the Argents’ either), i.e. a Werewolf Hunter Diary that describes all sorts of mythical creatures . . . like say . . . Lizard Thingys with Hard Ons for teenage boys, like Stiles.

Ultimately, the threesome decide that in order to obtain said book, Allison must obtain Granpoppy Not McCain’s office keys during the Big Lacrosse Game, and pass them off to Stiles, so that he can search the premises, while Grandpoppy is “otherwise occupied.”  Hmmm . . . this storyline sounds mighty familiar.  Remember last seasons’ Big Bad Werewolf book?  Who knew those Argents were so gosh darn literary?

Because Jackson is EVERYONE’S TYPE . . .

After his Adventures in Car Lifting, Jackson has grown suspicious of that boring ass sex tape he made of himself . . . you know . . . the one ended up showing him doing nothing more than having a few wet dreams over the course of his allotted 7.5 hours of “beauty rest.”

Danny is confused by his supposedly heterosexual pals repeated entreaties that Danny watch the video.   “I’ve told you, you’re not my type,” explains Danny, who, as we know, tends to prefer his men swarthier and more . . . Derek-esque.

But Jackson thinks he’s everyone’s type.

So, Danny commandeers Creepy Photographer Guy to watch the video with him.  What they find is what many of us suspected in the first place.  As it turns out, Jackson’s tape has been manipulated to loop in on itself over and over again.  In other words, two hours of live footage are missing from the tape.

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This pretty much scraps Jackson’s Lizard Thingy Alibi . . . except, I don’t think he did it.  For one thing, he’s way too stupid .  . .

My money’s still on Photographer Guy as the footage-doctoring culprit (though, I guess “computer whiz” Danny could have done it too).  But why?  The most obvious reason would be to make Jackson eventually come to THINK he’s Lizard Thingy . . . but who would want to do that, aside from Lizard Thingy himself?  Ah, the plot . . . it’s thickening . . .

“The bigger they are, the BIGGER THEY ARE!”

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It’s time for Teen Wolf’s obligatory Lacrosse Match.  The whole cast is there . . . Creepy Photographer Guy, Jackson, Danny, Stiles, Scott, Allison, Grandpoppy Not-McCain.  Even the wolf pack has come to watch (minus Fugitive Isaac, of course).  For her part, Allison manages to wrangle her Grandpa’s keys, by using the old “I’m a girl, and I’m cold.  Be a gentleman and lend me your jacket.” trick.

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What girl hasn’t used that one before, huh?

Interestingly enough, despite the fact that Beacon Hills’ Lacrosse Team is getting to the point where it has more Werewolves on it than Humans, they are LOSING . . . BADLY .  . . and all because of some big Hulk of a guy, called the “Abomination.”  (Golly gee!  That’s the name of this episode!)

“I’m just pissed off, because I’m on a team called The Beavers.”

Abomination keeps knocking all members of the opposing team unconscious, leaving Coach Crackhead a player short.  His solution: get someone from the stands to play.  And I bet you will never guess who?

“Because Heaven forbid a male character on this show NOT play lacrosse.” 

It’s Boyd!  The Wolf Man With the Plan.  And wouldn’t you know it?  He gets to be just like Scott, after all, pummeling the entire lacrosse field like a champ, despite having never played the sport . . . ever.  And, of course, no one on the field seems to notice his Big Yellow Glowing Eyes . . . probably because half the team has them . . .

“Like jock straps, demon eyes are an essential part of the team uniform.” 

Grandpoppy Not-John McCain thinks this game is a bit violent for his tastes.  He much prefers nice calm games, like Chess, Checkers, and Cut the Werewolf in Half with a Carving Knife . . .

Lydia is Pretty Crier.  How nice for her . . . (especially considering she does it in every episode).

On his way to Not-John McCain’s office, Stiles runs into a tearful Lydia in the parking lot.  Ever the charmer, Stiles tells Lydia she looks beautiful when she cries . . .

. . . and offers her a petite, but surprisingly well-toned shoulder to cry on.  Lydia seems about ready to take Stiles up on his offer.

Unfortunately, Stiles has some bestiality to take care of, first . . . (Wait . . . I got that wrong again, didn’t I?)

Just like the Gremlins . . . Lizard Thingy doesn’t want to get wet . . .

Stiles is looking for Bestiality .  . . er . . . I mean the Bestiary.  Erica catches him, and brings him to the pool for a nice little swim / chat with Master Derek.  They discuss Stiles’ experience at the Auto Body shop, where Stiles noticed several EPA violations, and one Big Green Scaley Dude straight out of an old Japanese Horror Flick.

Speaking of Big Green Scaley Dude, his ears must have been burning, because he shows up for the party too!  And as we all know, their ain’t no party, like a Lizard Thingy party!

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Like I said, Lizard Thingy clearly has a thing for hot 24-year olds.  So, while it growls at Stiles, and harmlessly bats at Lydia, it’s Derek, who gets the paralytic neck massage, and ends up taking a flying leap into the pool.

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 A now immobilized Derek pleads for Stiles to call Scott.  But ever the unlikely hero, Stiles opts instead to dive into the water and rescue Derek.

The two swim arm-and arm-for hours (well . . .one swims, the other just sort of “hangs out”), as the conveniently water leery Lizard Thingy circles the pool, clearly anxious.  (Now, we know it’s not Jackson!  That guy LOOOOOVES the water . . . Unless, of course, he knows from experience that water will revert him back to his human form . . . hmmmm.)

Yes, Team Sterek . . . this entire scene was written JUST FOR YOU GUYS!  Forget, Lydia and her gorgeous crying, bring on the thinly-veiled homoeroticism!

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(Speaking of lovely ladies, what the heck was Queen Erica doing during all this time? Painting her toenails?)

“I was hungry.” 

Eventually, after a few hours of sexually tense water treading, Stiles and Derek get into a bit of a pissing contest, to determine who’d be better at saving the other one’s life.  Stiles eventually wins, by letting Derek drop into the pool like a rag doll, while he makes a mad dash for the phone to call Hero Scott.  Don’t worry!  He picks him up again.

Turns out, in addition to his solid rock climbing skills, Stiles is also a pretty kick ass swimmer.  I’m telling you.  He’s SPIDERMAN!

Meanwhile, back at the Lacrosse Game . . .

“Sorry about your  almost-broken bones!  Maybe a nice awkward family dinner with the people who want you dead, will make you feel better.”

Just when it seems like Bad Boyd might blow the wolfy lid off his Secret Identity, Scott distracts the crowd, by scoring a relatively human-looking point for the team.  So, of course, the Abomination tackles him.  And of course, right under the watchful eyes of Grandpoppy Not-McCain, Scott heals a very obviously broken leg bone, just by standing on it.

Grandpoppy is clearly impressed . . . so impressed that he invites Scott to his supposedly ex-girlfriend’s house for dinner, despite the fact that the lacrosse game is still going on.  (No worries!  Coach Crackhead can just get another werewolf from the crowd to play in Scott’s place.  The town is literally crawling with them.)

Ah . . . Dinner with Argents . . . it brings back such memories . . . like that time Scott got caught searching for bullets in Kate’s room, and ended up having to tell Allison’s parents he was stealing condoms, instead.  Awesome!

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I have to say, I sided with Grandpoppy Not- McCain on this one, watching the Argents squirm awkwardly, while Grandpoppy openly inquired why Scott and Allison weren’t still boning on a regular basis was kind of awesome.

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“I pretend to hate you, but really, I just want to lick you like a lollipop.” 

And the old guy just seemed to be having such a great time too!

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Eventually, Scott and Allison excuse themselves to go search Grandpoppy’s room for the Bestiality . . . er . . . I mean the Bestiary, and wind up finding a cook book instead.  (I don’t know, maybe their one in the same.  I wouldn’t put it past Not-McCain to pan fry a few werewolves and vampires, and slather them with barbeque sauce.)

But then Scott gets his S.O.S. message from Stiles, annnnd . . . leaves him to die, so he can hang out with Allison some more.  Now, that’s a good friend.

Fortunately, for Stiles, Scott has other business to attend to at the school, business that involves a USB drive on Grandpoppy’s key chain that may contain the Bestiary.  (Pretty tech savvy for an old guy, right?)  So, it looks like our favorite Wolf/Human duo will get rescued after all . . .

Wolfy Scott pulls Team Sterek out of the water just in time to face off against Lizard Thingy, who prompty tosses our hero into some glass.  Thinking fast, Scott holds up one of the shards as a weapon.

“Prepare to get shanked, Gecko from Geico!”

So, you can imagine the Wolf Pup’s shock when Lizard Thingy gets one look at his ugly mug, and runs away crying.  (But was it “a beautiful cry,” Stiles?)

“Don’t look at me.  I’m hideous!” 

I can’t say I blame it.  Lizard Thingy needs to moisturize . . .

Safe and sound, outside the school, Derek tells Scott Lizard Thingy’s name, it’s Kainaima.  Has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?  Scott things the whole Scooby Gang (Argents included) should band together to bring it down.  But Derek’s not down with that.  He wants to kill it himself.

Say what?  What happened to your whole “join or die / we can’t do it alone” mentality, Hot Stuff?  Did the paralytic toxin freeze part of your brain too?

Tsk, tsk Derek.  It’s a good thing, you’re so darn pretty . . .

In the final scene of the episode, Grandpoppy corners Scott, and knives him in the gut.  Now Pappy!  Is that any way to treat your future Grandwolf-in-Law?

“Wait . . . before you leave me here to bleed all over the floor, check out my impersonation of an old man.  Pretty good, right?” 

Until next time, Werebangers!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under Teen Wolf

What’s on TV This Week? (1/29 – 2/4) – Spoilery Sneak Peeks from Once Upon a Time, Gossip Girl, PLL, Glee, and TVD

[ Gossip Girl’s “G.G.” and PLL’s “A Kiss Before Lying” recaps are both on their way!  I wanted to take a little extra time with these. Gossip Girl just celebrated it’s 100th episode, after all.  (That just doesn’t happen every day!)  Check back for both recaps within the next 24 hours . . .]

Greetings TV fans!  One of my absolute favorite new TV Trends is the Episode Sneak Peek, i.e. the Web Clip.  More and more lately, networks are releasing key scenes from their upcoming television episodes, a week early, in hopes of generating buzz about their shows, and, possibly, increasing ratings.

The way I see it, this is a win-win situation for both the network and spoiler-loving TV viewers like myself.  From the network’s perspective, it gives the corporate suits the opportunity to control which spoilers are leaked about their upcoming episode, while still giving impatient fans something to chew on, while they wait for the actual episode to air.

From the fan’s perspective, we sort of get to feel like we’re “cheating” the system, by getting the early scoop on select parts of upcoming episodes that only the most spoiler savvy of viewers get to see . . .

“Beating the system .  . . one YouTube video at a time . . .” 

This week, was particuarly exciting for me, because I managed to find webclips for nearly EVERY show I watch!  And these aren’t just throwaway scenes, either!  Some of the sneak peeks I found offer up some genuine hints as to what these shows’ upcoming episodes have in store for us.

From a torrid fairytale affair . . . to a royal wedding that positively NO ONE wants to happen  .  . . to a heart-wrenching betrayal . . . to a Michael Jackson-inspired sing-off . . . to an out-and-out war between two sets of vampire brothers, something tells me that this week’s television fare is going to be setting the internet a-blaze with heated discussions for weeks to come . . .

So, without further adieu, I proudly bring to you, This Week’s Collection of Spoilery Sneak Peaks . . .

Once Upon a Time

“I see youuuuu!” 

Episode 11 – Fruit from the Poisonous Tree

Airs: Sunday, January, 28th, 8.p.m. EST on ABC

Though I was initially drawn to this fairytale fantasy, due to it’s uniquely original concept, and wealthy of unabashedly nerdy literary nods . . . the complex, and suprisingly dark, love story between Snow White, Prince Charming, and their respective Storybrook counterparts, is one of the main reasons I keep returning, after week.

How much of a role should amorphous concepts like fate, instinct, and chemistry play in one’s pursuit of happiness?  Is it acceptable in life to hurt and betray others, in the name of True Love?  These intriguing questions are central to Once Upon a Time, in general, and Mary Margaret’s (i.e. Snow White’s) and David’s (i.e. Prince Charming’s) story, specifically.

In this first webclip from the upcoming episode, David and Mary Margaret sneak off for a romantic forest picnic, of which their fairytale counterparts — who memorably met one another in, more or less, these same woods — would most definitely approve.  And yet the happiness of this romantic reunion is shadowed by the fact that David is married to another woman, one who has been doing everything in her power to make their ailing marriage work . . .

What’s so interesting about this couple is how many complex emotions they bring about in the viewer’s subconscious.  On one hand, everybody knows that Prince Charming and Snow White belong together.  This is something we’ve taken for granted, since we were kids.  No one else will ever be quite as right for these two individuals, as they are for one another . . .

And yet, as far Mary Margaret and David are concerned, their life is not a fairytale.  They aren’t princes and princesses, but, rather, real people, with real responsibilities . .  both of whom (while, generally, still loveable) have some genuine character flaws.  And this raises a  difficult question: Does the fact that, in alternate universe, these two individuals lived Happily Ever After, justify what they are doing in this universe?

I guess that’s really up to the viewer to decide . . .

Our second webclip introduces us to the plot that I suspect will take up the bulk of the episode.  We know him as Sidney Glass, once-editor of The Mirror (Storybrooke’s local paper), and, up until this point, one of the malevolent Mayor’s strongest allies.

But in Fairytale land, he was the Evil Queen’s Magic Mirror.  And judging by the below scene, in both worlds, his tendency to portray the world exactly as he sees it, might end up leaving him shattered . . .

Anytime Once Upon a Time focuses an entire hour on one of its minor characters, it takes a risk of alienating fans who are watching the show, more or less, just for it’s leads (i.e. Emma, Mary Margaret, David, and the Mayor).  Some minor character episodes have been highly successful, at least in my humble opinion.  In fact “The Price of Gold” (which featured Cinderella’s story), and “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter” (which featured the now-dearly departed Sheriff Graham / The Hunter) were actually among my favorites of the entire series.  And yet, other minor character episodes, like “That Still Small Voice” (about Shrink Archie Hopper, i.e. Jiminey Cricket), and “True North” (about Nicholas and Eva, i.e. Hansel and Gretel) felt a bit flat to me.

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Having always been a sucker for characters who don’t always necessarily walk on the “straight and narrow,” but who, deep down, have a good heart, I found myself intrigued by Sidney Glass, ever since we met the character, early on in the series.  Even though he’s definitely a minor character, I think his story has a lot of potential, particularly, if it’s written in a way that illustrates him as a darkly complex character and morally ambiguous, as opposed to just another schlub the Wicked Mayor managed to buy off . . .

Oh, and The Stranger . . . he’s TOTALLY one of the Brothers’ Grimm, looking to rewrite fairytale history.  It’s SO obvious!

Gossip Girl

Episode 100, “GG”

Airs: Monday, Janury 30th at 9 pm. EST on the CW

As hit or miss as Gossip Girl has been lately, there was a time, not too long ago, when it was one of the best things on television.  The clothes were eviably hipper than most of us could afford.  The couplings and sexcapades were WHITE hot . . .

The plot lines ranged from laugh-out-loud funny to jaw-droppingly, OMFG, scandalous.  And there were enough snappy, snarky quotable lines in each self-contained hour to . . . for lack of a better phrase .  . .  fill a book . . .

It’s for this reason that I am SOOOO incredibly excited about this episode’s 100th episode extravaganza.  If the rumors are true, this hour of television will be jam-packed with homages to GG’s raunchiest moments, eye-popping blot twists, and most deliciously evil schemes and insults.

In short, it will be like Season 1, all over again.  And I, for one, can’t wait to celebrate the show that taught me, once and for all, that “tights are NOT pants!”

Of course, there’s that little unavoidable matter of Blair’s sham of a wedding to that cyborg Price of Dull, Louis-bot . . .

Ahhh . . . Chuck Bass . . . the only man who can cross his legs, and still look masculine doing it.  And that voice . . . I could listen to that voice reading a Depends commercial, and still get turned on.

Don’t worry, Chuck.  Blair CANNOT go through this wedding . . .  It would be positively un-holy for her to do so . . .

That said, you may want to get that adorably toned little butt of yours, over to the church, stat!  Because it looks like she’s actually made her way down the aisle, without angry GG fans tackling her, in protest . . .

Pretty Little Liars

Episode 18 – “A Kiss Before Lying”

Airs: Monday, January 30th, 8.p.m. on ABC Family

When you are being stalked by the mysterious “A,” who literally knows your every move, and can ruin your life for the slightest infraction, lying is pretty much part of your “job description.”

Throughout two seasons, we’ve seen the Rosewood foursome lie to practically everybody they know about something . . . their parents, their significant others, their siblings, even the police.  But when it’s revealed that one of the girls might be starting to crack under the pressure, and her boyfriend just might have the key to bringing down “A,” once and for all, the Pretty Little Liars find themselves in the unique predicament of actually having to lie to eachother . . .

Honestly, as far as webclips go, these were kind of disappointing.  After all, we already knew coming in to this episode, that the rest of the PLL girls were working with Caleb to continue hacking into A’s cell phone, and that they had all controversially decided to leave Hanna out of it.

That said, the show’s Season Finale is not too far away.  And with it will come the much-awaited reveal of “A’s” identity . . . Now, that we know this story actually has an endgame, the probability that the writers will drop important clues into upcoming episodes, like this one, is increasingly high . . . .

Glee

Episode 11 – “Wanna Be Startin Somethin'”

Airs: Tuesday, January 31st at 8 p.m., EST on Fox

After last week’s Yes/No episode, Gleeks were talking more about whether or not Rachel would accept Finn’s proposal of marriage, and less about the musical performances that dominated the hour.

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I suspect that for this week’s episode, which will feature a homage to the works of the late King of Pop, Michael Jackson, the opposite will be true . . .

Truth be told, in the past Glee’s artist-centric episodes haven’t been among their best received.   Both the Britney Spears and Madonna-themed episodes were harshly panned by the critics.  And, for me, Glee’s Fleetwood Mac-inspired “Rumors” stands out as one of the worst episodes in Glee history.  Only the Lady Gaga-inspired episodes, “Theatricality” and “Born this Way,” seemed to manage to stay above the fray . . .

Well . . . almost . . . 

All negativity aside, I actually think “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin'”  has the opportunity to become a Glee classic.  For one thing, Michael Jackson’s soleful and diverse catalogue of music . . . combined with his flare for flamboyant costumes, and seamlessly choreographed numbers . . . seems to dovetail really well with the things that Glee does best.

Plus, whereas the Britney Spears and Madonna-themed episodes’ so-called plotlines were eye-roll inducing in their ridiculousness.  (Laughing gas induced fantasy sequences?  Seriously?), the reason why all these Glee-kids are suddenly all hopped up on MJ, despite having been infants through most of his heyday actually makes sense . . .

And it’s all explained, quite succinctly, here . . .

How I adore this clip, let me count the ways . . .  For one thing, I’m thrilled to see New Directions actually THINKING about their Regionals set list, ahead of time, for a change, as opposed to . . . oh, I don’t know, coming up with it five minutes before the episode actually airs?

I was also a big fan of Artie actually admitting that he was just a year old, when Michael Jackson moonwalked.  (In truth, he was actually not even born yet, but  I digress.)  So, many times, I’ve wondered how the Glee kids’ music taste often vastly pre-dated my own (see Fleetwood Mac episode).  In this case, at least the writers are inserting some recognition of that disconnect.

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And I hate to say it, but I’m REALLY digging Sebastian as Glee‘s new super villain.   After all, Sue Sylvester can only try to bring down Glee club so many times.  And not since Jesse St. James stint with Vocal Adrenaline has the New Directions really had a worthy adversary, who wasn’t afraid to “fight dirty” to win the competition.

Speaking of worthy adversaries, there’s something incredibly enjoyable about watching Sebastian go to head-to-head with Santana.  They say “Greed is Good.”  But I say “Mean is Better.”

And these two have that down, in spades.   Plus, dare I say it, for two gay characters, these two have an astounding amount of sexual chemistry. Don’t believe me?  Check out this musical sing-off to MJ’s iconic “Smooth Criminal” . . .

(By the way, did anybody else find the cello players oddly constipated looking facial expressions during the number a bit disturbing?)

And, of course, no Glee artist-centric episode would be complete without an ensemble number in which every cast member dresses up in one of the artist-in-question’s most memorable outfits . . .

(I think Blaine is supposed to be Michael Jackson from the beginning of the Thriller video.  Am I wrong?)

The Vampire Diaries

Episode 312 “Bringing Out the Dead”

Airs: Thursday, February 2nd,  8 p.m. EST on the CW

TVD webclips are notoriously heavy on Damon snark and Eye Thing, while frustratingly light on actual plot points . . .

I suspect this has to do with head writer Julie Plec being a bit of a spoilerphobe.  But with good reason!  After all, apart from the immensely attractive cast, and interminable shipper wars, it’s really this show’s game-changing plot twists that keep us tuning in, week after week.

This week’s webclip features a shirtless Stefan (Haven’t seen that one, in a while!) . . .

 . . .  and a rather smug “I kissed Elena, and you can’t take that away from me” Damon . . .

 . . .  doing what they do best, bickering and scheming  . . .

Just to be clear, Damon and Stefan were TOTALLY eye-f*&king in this scene, weren’t they?  Clearly, I wasn’t the only one who noticed that . . .

One of the things TVD does best . . . apart from it’s unimaginably erotic and unbelievably addictive love triangles, of course . . . is it’s parallels and role reversals. Last season, Elena un-daggered Elijah, in hopes of finding a way to eliminate Klaus as a threat, without hurting the people she loved.

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Stefan dutifully went along with her plan.  While Damon was angrily outspoken about his mistrust for the Original Vampire (with good reason, as it turns out), and ended up taking matters into his own hands, in a way that neither Elena nor Stefan approved . . .

Source 

Now, less than a year later, Damon is the one who has un-daggered Elijah . . .  (CAN I GET A HELL YEAH?)

 . . . and is now looking to him for a possible alliance.  And Stefan is the mistrustful one, who’d prefer to take matters into his own hands . . .

But, of course, the parallels don’t end there.  There’s also the little matter of Damon locking lips with the girl Stefan always presumed was his own . . . despite the fact that his recent behavior has made a reunion between the two former lovebirds nearly impossible.

Source 

And though, on the surface, these two brothers are fighting about vampire wars, and the efficacy of “old-fashioned” sitdowns, just beneath that surface lies a slow burn of love for the same woman, and with it, decades of jealousy, betrayal, and heartbreak . . .

That’s a whole lot of angst and complexity for one minute and 21 seconds, isn’t it?  You can imagine then, how intense the rest of the hour will be . . .

And there you have it, an entire week’s worth of juicy television, condensed down into a few short webclips.  I know I’ll definitely be tuning in . . . Will you?

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under Glee, Gossip Girl, Once Upon a Time, Pretty Little Liars, Spoilers and Sneak Peeks, The Vampire Diaries

Where’s My Wren? – A Recap of Pretty Little Liars “Reality Bites Me”

If you’ve read any of my recaps before, you know that I generally like to choose a cheesy title for them, one that hopefully encapsulates the tone of the particular episode I am recapping.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t do that this week, because I was a little distracted.  The problem, I think, was that I just didn’t love this episode, as much as I loved previous ones.  It just seemed like something was missing, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was. 

Then it hit me . . .

The “thing” that was missing from this week’s installment of “Pretty Little Liars” started with a “W” and ended with a “ren.”  The entire time I was watching this episode, I kept listening for that adorable British accent, watching for that smile, and waiting for that hot drunken schmuck to drop another flower pot on Spencer’s floor . . .

. .  . but he never showed.

The episode even tried to trick me, by having a “Wren stand in” pop on the screen to flirt with Spencer.  And, truth be told, that guy looked a little drunk too (More on him later.).  But you can’t fool ME, ABC Family!  Personally, I think you are trying to hide the fact that Wren was kidnapped by the Witchy A, ruiner of all TV relationships . . .

But I digress . . .  A LOT.  Seeing as how I just wasted 200 words of my recap on a guy who wasn’t even IN this week’s installment, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE bring him BACK!  I imagine I should probably start recapping the actual episode.  So, let’s get started . . .

A Lip-sticky Situation

Hanna was a TOTAL Nancy Drew this episode, wasn’t she?   Nothing much exciting really happened to her, but she made up for it, by expertly shoving her nose in the more exciting lives of others.  Oh, and did I mention she got her gay boyfriend to take her back, after she smashed his uber expensive car to smithereens?  Gotta love the forgiving hearts of the filthy rich . . .

“Hey, no worries!  My dad has ten just like it.  We used to lend that one out to the “help.”  They can hitchhike . . .”

But before all that happened, Hanna was eating breakfast, after a slumber party with the girls, when she received yet another mysterious text message from A.  (Apparently, the girls unblocked their cell phones after last week.  So they can now conveniently receive A’s messages again.  I bet you are all SUPER relieved to hear this. I know I was.) 

But this message was different from the others, because it contained . . . an . . . ATTACHMENT!

But, seriously, the ATTACHMENT was actually pretty creepy.  It was a video taken from inside Spencer’s closet.   The video featured our Fabulous Foursome freaking out, after finding that Lipstick Threat on Spencer’s mirror last week . . .

The girls immediately rip open the closet, and something falls on top of them, causing them all to scream.  At this point, I got very excited.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t anything cool, like severed head, or bloody knife, or even a mutilated Barbie doll.  It was .  . .wait for it . . .  a tube of lipstick.

LAME! 

Oh, and it wasn’t even a pretty lipstick, like the one illustrated above.  It was an ugly ass hot pink lipstick, in a shade that was obviously created  to be exclusively worn by airheaded teenage girls in 80’s movies.

Oops . . . she didn’t like that comment, did she?

Clearly, we were supposed to believe that the hot pink tube of crap hiding in Spencer’s closet was the same lipstick that “A” used to write on Spencer’s mirror.  And yet, seeing as the writing on the mirror was BRIGHT RED, not pink, I just didn’t buy it.

Later, Hanna headed off to Sean’s parents’ dental office to receive her “punishment” for wrecking their car.  Supposedly, the purpose of Hanna’s indentured servitude was to “pay” for the car’s repairs.  However, I personally think, Sean’s parents had a more sinister reason for doing this.  My theory is that Sean’s parents were hoping that Sean would take one look at Hanna in that hideous “Kitty Smock” uniform, and decide not to date the illustrious shoplifter / car thief, after all.

Please officer, I’d much prefer the orange jumpsuit and handcuffs, if you don’t mind.  Purple cartoon cats ALWAYS make me look fat.

Granted, when I was little, I used to go to a dentist’s office, where all the hygienists wore outfits like Hanna’s.  Back then, I thought they were the COOLEST shirts EVER!  So, it’s possible that I am simply not the target demographic for the Kitty Smock.  Who knows?

As Hanna rides the elevator on her way to work, who enters but . . . Creepy Blind Jenna!

And what does Jenna do as soon as she steps in the elevator for a three-second ride?  Well, she does what everyone else does in that situation, of course!  She puts on her lipstick!

Wait . . . are you telling me you DON’T put on lipstick while in a moving compartment, because you are afraid of THIS happening?

Yeah . . . me neither.  But apparently BLIND Jenna does it ALL THE TIME!

Did I mention that she’s BLIND?  Not that there is anything wrong with being BLIND, per se.  It’s just that .  . . well . . . why the heck is she LOOKING in the mirror to apply her LIPSTICK?

Hanna doesn’t seem bothered by this anomaly, at all, however.  She is more concerned with the putrid color of lipstick Jenna is wearing.  Lo and behold it’s the EXACT same UGLY ASS lipstick that the girls’ found in Spencer’s house that morning. 

Jenna asks Hanna (who she can’t SEE, of course), if Hanna likes the lipstick she is wearing.  Hanna, of course, lies through her teeth, fearing that if she tells the truth about how hideous Jenna’s lipstick is, the latter’s EVIL CANE of JUSTICE will break both her kneecaps. 

Speaking of which, where the HECK was Jenna’s cane this week?  Did she leave it in the same place as her good taste in lipstick?  Speaking of “color coordination,” have you ever noticed that Jenna ALWAYS wears the same black outfit in every episode?  Weird . . .

Anyway, after doing some pretty impressive snooping, Hanna later learns that Jenna was in the building seeing her therapist.  Oh yes, boys and girls, Jenna goes to THERAPY!  OMG!  Now, if that doesn’t scream KILLER / STALKER, I don’t know what does!  (Yeah, I’m being sarcastic, in case you haven’t figured it out by now.)

Later, Hanna is rewarded with even more juicy gossip, when she receives an instant message on her laptop from the mysterious “A,” one that contains  . . . wait for it . . . another ATTACHMENT.  This one actually made me giggle.  Wanna see?

If you recall, SOMEONE made A BUTTLOAD of copies of those cheap photobooth makeout pictures that Emily and Maya produced a couple weeks back, seemingly for this exact purpose.  Props to Hanna for not being the b*tch I thought she would be about this discovery.  Not only did she not tell anyone else about what she learned.  But when she spoke to Emily, she was actually really supportive — telling Emily that if she met someone who made her happy, whoever that person was, than that was all that mattered.  She’s kind of growing on me, that Hanna . . .

Hanna gets rewarded for her kindness at the end of the episode, when she’s asked to the homecoming dance by the Almost Definitely Gay Sean.  She didn’t think he would ask her, because she STOLE AND WRECKED HIS CAR!  She also thought he had recently started dating this blonde chick who was driving him around everywhere.  But really, Sean and the blonde chick were just attending some cult group meetings for RLW, which stands for Real Love Waits.  Hanna’s so excited about the homecoming dance, she agrees to attend these cult meetings with him. 

“I would LOVE to go to the dance with you, Honey!  My last beard date TOTALLY cancelled out last minute.”

“Awesome!  We should totally color coordinate!  I found this lipstick in Spencer’s closet that would really complement both of our complexions . . .”

Relationships on the Rocks (Shaken, Not Stirred)

Poor Aria!  If Hanna was getting LUCKY this week, with all her windfalls of juicy gossip, Aria was getting . . . well . . . SUCKY.  For starters, after finding that letter from A about her father’s affair, Aria’s mother, understandably was on the rampage.  Fortunately, she took the news maturely, and didn’t take it out on Aria, who had been forced by her father to keep the affair a secret for an entire year.  But it still made dinner at the Montgomery house mighty awkward!

Douchey Daddy!  Now we know why Hilary Swank left your ass!

Fortunately for Aria, at least, initially, she had her relationship with Mr. Fitz to fall back on.  So, when Fitzy told her that he would be doing a lame short story reading gig that night, Aria jumped at the chance to go watch her beau in action.  Randomly, the place where Fitzy did his reading looked suspiciously like a sports bar.  Quite possibly, it was the SAME sports bar, where Aria and Fitzy did the deed in the potty during the pilot episode.

I KNEW I recognized that toilet!

If that last line about “balloons” was any indication, Fitzy’s writing was BAAAAD!  But Aria wanted back in the Fitzy Pantalones so badly that she didn’t seem to notice.  Someone else DID notice, however — namely, Fitzy’s BFF from college.  I think his name was Artie or Marty or something.  No matter, he was basically just there to toss out some good one-liners and screw things up between Aria and Fitzy . . .

“Happy lovers, have no fear!  Sergeant C*ck Block is HERE!”

While Aria is sitting with the bromantic buddies, Artie / Marty / What’s His Face plays nice, regaling Aria on Fitzy’s “adorable” little quirks, such as laughing in his sleep.  (Now that’s just plain creepy.)  But when Aria leaves, Artie /Marty / What’s His Face really lets Fitzy have it for his underage fling. In fact, he falls just short of calling Poor Fitzy a child molester.  The conversation irks Fitzy considerably.  So much so, that he gives Aria the cold shoulder when she comes back to his place.  Aria mends fences quickly, however, by making out with him, and seductively offering “more later.”  Well played, Aria!

“I’m sure Artie / Marty / What’s His Face is great and all, but can he do THIS for you?”

Unfortunately for Aria, Artie / Marty / What’s His Face isn’t the only person trying to break up her relationship with Fitzy.  When Aria returns to Fitzy’s apartment the next day, to retrieve her cell phone, he is LIVID with her over a text message she received from A about the pair’s relationship.  Fitzy dumps Aria on the spot. 

Expect LOTS of REALLY BAD poetry to come out of the loss of this relationship . . .

Love at First Mixtape

Creepy Toby was only SLIGHTLY less creepy this week.  But the minor personality change was enough to make Oh-Golly-Gee-Please-Don’t-Let-Me-Be–a-Lesbian Emily take notice.  As usual, Toby used his alone time with Emily as an opportunity to lecture her on “being herself” and “not caring what other’s think.”  I swear this dude is like a walking After School Special . . . assuming the After School Special  features the main character killing a girl in the shower, while dressed as his own mother.

From his conversations with Emily, we learn that Creepy Toby is an artist, and that he and Emily share the same taste in music.  He offers to make her a mixtape.  She offers to meet him for coffee.

The problem is that when Emily arrives at the ONE COFFEE SHOP IN TOWN, Hanna and Spencer are already there.  So, Wimpy Emily, not wanting her friends to know she is dating the dude that very possibly could be A / Alison’s Killer, completely ignores Creepy Toby, and goes to sit with the girls instead. 

Creepy Toby angrily stalks off, leaving the waitress at the coffee shop Emily’s mixtape, with instructions that she deliver it to Emily.  The mixtape has a picture of Emily on the front cover — the gesture is either really sweet, or really disturbing, I haven’t decided which yet.

The next day, Emily seeks out Creepy Toby, in hopes of setting things right between them.

Is it merely a coincidence that when Emily finds him, Toby is reading The Catcher in the Rye, a book so commonly associated with serial killers that many libraries put a watch out on anyone who takes it out of the library?  (No joke!)  Why isn’t he reading To Kill a Mockingbird, like everyone else in that school?

Anyway, although clearly pissed with Emily, Creepy Toby quickly forgives her wimpiness he’ll chop her body into little tiny pieces and eat them, later.  By way of apology, she gives him a mixtape.  And even though it doesn’t have Toby’s picture drawn on it, Emily throws her OWN hat into the “Creepy Ring,” by cutting letters out of magazines to spell out “Toby’s Mix” on the CD cover — you know, like they do for ransom notes in the movies?  It’s a Match Made in Disturbia between these two  . . .

Spencer Whacks Some Balls .  . . Her Father’s

Were you at all surprised that Spencer ended up winning the Golden Orchid award for her that paper on the Russian Revolution that she stole from her sister?  I wasn’t.  And neither was Spencer.  She did feel guilty though, especially when her father, who has spent the entire first part of the season completely ignoring her, was suddenly showering her with positive attention.  He even offered to take her to the country club to meet an important prospective client.  Spencer and her dad were to play doubles with this  prospective client and his daughter.

Spencer is so psyched about the opportunity to bond with her dad, that she races off to the tennis club to practice.  There she meets not Wren Alex. The two flirt a bit, as Alex compliments Spencer on the take-charge manner in which she handles balls.  But when the time comes for the match, Spencer’s dad insists that Spencer THROW the game, so that he can soften up the prospective client.  Spencer reluctantly throws the match, and feels terrible about it. 

To make matters worse, her new boy toy not Wren Alex sees the whole thing.  He confronts Spencer about it, commiserating over the abundant pressure to “play games” in order to succeed in high society.  Gutsy Ball Whacker Spencer decides to take the bull by the horns, and ask Alex out.  He can barely contain his surprise and excitement, when he says yes.  You GO GIRL THAT’S NOT WREN!

“Hey Alex, you remind me of someone.  I can’t put my finger on who.  How are you at doing British accents?”

Later that evening, Spencer’s father admits that, not only did he throw the match to woo this client, he also blamed his inability to get a table at the club on a “ball attendant”  . . . namely, Alex.  Spencer is LIVID!  She tells her Dad off for his cheating ways, brilliantly ending the rant with a confession about stealing her sister’s paper.  She sure showed him! 

At the end of the episode, Spencer is seen heading out on a date with not Wren Alex.  Apparently, Spencer isn’t only capable of whacking balls, she can juggle them as well.

That’s all I’ve got folks!  Tune in next week when, hopefully, WREN IS BACK!

We miss you, Drunky!

 

 

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Filed under Pretty Little Liars

“A” is for Attention Whore (and A-hole) – A Recap of Pretty Little Liars’ “Can You Hear Me Now?”

Damn that “A”!  She’s like a pesky little toddler — you know, the one who is always standing on her head, doing cartwheels, and annoyingly tugging on your shirt, while continually screaming, “Look at ME!  Look at ME!”  . . . during a funeral service  . . . for her Grandma.  As the weeks progress, “A” just seems to get more  and more insistent on keeping the girls’ attention, with her mean-spirited messages and evil tricks. 

This week, the girls actually did what I thought they should have done in the first episode (well . . . after calling the cops, of course).  Namely, they made a concerted and unified effort to cut off all communication with the mysterious “A.”  Well, it turns out, when it comes to Stalker Teens, I’m not nearly the expert I thought I was.  Because this actually ended up being a HUGE MISTAKE!  

Let’s revisit, shall we?

Spencer Ruins Saves the Day!  (And the girls sexually harrass Mr. Fitz.)

The first moments of the episode, feature our favorite cyber-stalking victims, gathered on a park bench. (Well. . .  the first few moments, aside from Hanna’s SUPER lame, blink-and-you’ll miss it, run-in with the cops, which I refuse to recognize as an actual scene, due to its sheer pointless ridiculousness.  “So, you STOLE and totalled someone’s car, Hanna the Infamous Shoplifter?  No big deal!  At least you’re not fat anymore . . .),.

The purpose of this bonding session?  To create a memorial for Alison, the same “Dead” Chick who currently seems to be making all their lives a living hell.  And, based on the flashbacks shown, Alison more or less made their lives a living hell, while she was alive too.  

“Kiss my psycho stalking ASS, BITCHES!  If you don’t, I’ll never make you cheap ugly friendship bracelets AGAIN!”

(SERIOUSLY!  Even BEFORE she died, Alison seemed like a majorly annoying, judgmental b*tch!  Why did these girls bother hanging out with her, in the first place?  I can understand Emily, because she obviously had a BIG lesbian crush on the girl.  And Hanna needed Alison to make her popular, despite her weight.  But Aria and Spencer?  I just don’t get it . . .)

So, anyway, the girls fight a bit about which one of them should get stuck holding on to Dead Alison’s fug bracelet.  Fortunately, Spencer, who clearly enjoys stealing other people’s things (like, for example, their term papers and their boyfriends), gallantly offers to take the ugly piece of fabric back to her place for some “good loving.”

For SALE!  The one and only friendship bracelet that spent time in an ACTUAL coffin and LIVED TO TELL THE TALE!  If you sniff closely, you can even SMELL the rotted flesh!  It can be yours for the price of $29.99 (plus shipping, handling, and a small portion of the corpse’s estate tax.)

Then, Spencer, who apparently takes her laptop EVERYWHERE (including the bathroom), randomlywhips it out (no pun intended), and uses it to prevent herself from receiving texts, calls or e-mails from any and all unknown numbers.  (Who knew small town parks had such excellent WiFi?)  The other girls borrow the computer from Spencer and quickly follow suit.

While they are doing that, Mr. Fitz rides by on his bicycle.  Fitzy is looking Super Femme, with his ghostly pale stick legs and tight ass bicycle shorts.

“LIVE STRONG, underage minors that I will eventually screw!  LIVE STRONG!”

Although I was fairly unimpressed with the whole “Fitz and Bicycle” package, the girls apparently liked it just fine.  Spencer and Hanna, in particular, took joy in hooting and hollering at Fitzy, with all the class and tact of an overweight construction worker, or a middle-aged Wall Street type, trying desperately to “score some hos” at an overpriced, slightly seedy, Titty Bar.  Noticeably silent during this love fest, were Closet Lesbian, Emily, and Aria, who totally could have totally shouted out “I’ve tapped that” . . . but didn’t (unfortunately, because that would have been funny).

Just when the girls are beginning to celebrate their newfound freedom to sexually harrass their professors without killjoy “A” looking over their shoulders, an “Alison is Lost” flyer conveniently falls in their laps.  “Ding Dong the B*tch is Dead!” is scrawled across the front in marker.

My sentiments exactly . . .

Re-Learning To Kill a Mockingbird, as taught by a Very Pissy Professor

“That Scout character seemed kind of cute.  Think she would date me?”

At school, Aria once again visits Ezra Fitz in between classes, to tell him how much fun her friends had objectifying his man parts at the park the other day.  Fitzy’s eyes noticeably lightup, as he mulls over the possibility of a Pretty Little Fivesome, with himself as centerpiece.  But, for now, he will have to settle for being a One-Cradle kind of Robber.  He tells Aria that they need to “talk,” and invites her over to his studio apartment for some noodles and sex.  Aria, desperate to learn what’s underneath those bicycle shorts, promptly agrees.

Fitzy and Aria start talking about how Aria thinks her dad is probably boinking the teaching assistant again.  When Fitzy gently suggests that she let her parents work out their problems in their own way, Aria gets WAY TOO UPSET!  Suddenly, she’s going at Fitzy like a pit bull in heat, only not in a hot way.  In fact, Aria actually kind of reminded me of Joe Pesci in that famous scene from Goodfellas.  Except, instead of repeatedly asking Fitzy whether he thought she was efffing “funny,” she continually demanded to know whether he thought she was effing “immature.”

“So what?  You think I’m a BABY!  A f*&king BABY?  Like I’m immature?  Do I look like a wear a f*&king poopy diaper to YOU?”

Aria then storms out of the house, leaving Fitzy to clean up the trail of poopy and spitup his baby left behind . . .

The next day in Mr. Fitz’s class, the group get into a discussion about Harper Lee’s classic novel, To Kill a Mockingbird.

And the whole scene made me feel as old as dirt.  I read the novel my freshman year of high school (which wasn’t THAT long ago, mind you).  However, upon viewing this scene, I quickly realized that, while I recalled a few general things about the characters in the story, I remembered next to nothing about its plot.  It truly shames me to say that, before I wrote this recap, I headed off to Wikipedia, and read the To Kill a Mockingbird entry, in hopes of truly understanding what went down here. 

First off, you just knew Fitzy was in a BAD MOOD, when he started calling Atticus Finch a hypocrite.  Now, like I said, I don’t remember that much about the book, but I KNOW that NOBODY messes with ATTICUS!  That’s like the literary equivalent of kicking the Pope in the nuts.

“You are going DOWN, Fitzy, you muthaf*&ka!”

Fitzy’s point, I think, was that, while Atticus looked down his nose at his hometown, for its failure to provide justice for Tom Robinson, he was more than willing to help Boo Radley escape the arm of justice, after the latter had killed Bob Ewell.  Aria then makes some lame argument about there being an equal “exchange,” and Atticus’s son Jem having been “raised right.” 

Fitzy interrogates Aria, like a scorned lover, in front of the ENTIRE class.  Then, when another student tries to offer his opinion, Fitzy jumps down his throat for no reason whatsoever.  Later that night, Aria, scolds Fitzy for his bad behavior.  They kiss and make up . . .

 The Femme Ranger rides AGAIN!

But then, Aria comes home to find that “A” has spilled the beans to her mom about her father’s affair through a letter.   The letter seems to suggest that Aria knew about the affair all along (which she did).  Aria’s mom looks PISSED!

Creepy Toby strikes again!

“Emily, after Chem Lab, I would very much like to eat your liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.  Sound good?”

Like I said, I don’t remember much about To Kill A Mockingbird.  But I DO remember the characters.  Particularly, I remember reading about Boo Radley.  I  remember how,  for most of the book, I was absolutely certain the dude was a child molester.  And then, at the end of the novel, Boo ended up being kind of a nice guy. . . just misunderstood (Sorry for spoiling it for you, if you haven’t read it yet.)  It’s highly possible that the writers wanted us to feel that way about Toby Cavanaugh by the end of this episode — namely, that he is a nice guy who is simply misunderstood. 

That might end up being true.   But you know what?   He still creeps the crap out of me!  I wouldn’t be at all surprised if, next week, we learn that Toby chopped off the heads of the kids who put shaving cream in his locker this week, and used their teeth to make a neckace . . .

 At the beginning of the episode, Emily is flirting with her almost-girlfriend, Maya, when the latter gives the former a bright red leash scarf.

Emily seems flattered by Maya’s gift.  However, she is so embarrassed by the prospect of people knowing the two of them are “an item,” that she takes it off, anytime anyone seems to be watching her.  So, of course, Emily’s new lab partner, Creepy Toby, has to make some awkward comment about how “nice” it looks on her, even though he only actually saw her wearing it for a split second.  Emily freaks out a bit when she opens her chemistry book, and finds in it those missing pictures from last week of Emily and Maya making out in the photobooth.

When Emily confronts Maya about this, she denies having anything to do with putting the photos in Emily’s book.  However, she doesn’t appear to be particularly concerned about their being made public.  Later in the episode, Emily more or less “dumps” Maya, claiming she needs “her space.”

Toward the end of the episode, Emily confronts Toby about the photos, when she finds him lurking around late at night near her garbage can. (Oh, I’m serious!)  Toby also claims not to have put the photos in her chemistry book, and basically denies ever having even seen them.  He then makes this long drawn out speech about “being yourself” and “not caring what others think of you,” that, again, was supposed to be nice, and, again, I found INSANELY creepy . . .  Hide your pet bunnies, Emily!

Open Wide, Hanna  . . .

Be careful, Hanna!  I read that excessive tears can cause weight gain!

So after enduring that pesky little grand theft auto issue (notice how it took WEEKS of Hanna’s mom screwing Deputy Douchey to expunge Hanna’s record of her minor shoplifting offense, but the car theft is just a blip on the radar), Hanna needs some time to unwind.  She is excited to receive a call from her long absent pompous ass of a father.  Convinced that her dad wants her back in her life, Hanna practically sprints to her father’s car.  However, she becomes suspicious when her father makes some snide remark about her “poor driving skills.”  (Haha, this guy’s a LAUGH riot!  He should really get his own comedy show . . . Yeah, I’m being sarcastic.  Papa Marin sucks!) 

“Did you come here because of the car?”  Hanna inquires, eyes blinking back tears.

“No, that would require me to actually give two sh*ts about you, which I don’t.”   Hanna’s father doesn’t admit or deny her daughter’s accusation.  Instead, he takes her to dinner in order to reveal to her the real reason for his visit.

Apparently, while Hanna was busy stealing clothing, crashing cars, making out with her possibly gay boyfriend, and dieting, Papa Marin was getting his screw on with his Stepford Wife-esque new fiance, and fathering her instantly unlikeable daughter, Kate.  Understandably, Hanna doesn’t take the news too well.  She copes with the situation by more or less threatening to murder Kate at sea, while the latter theoretically teacher her how to sail. 

 (Honestly, can you blame her?  Just looking at this self-righteous chick makes me want to revise my current views on gun control!)

When called out for her mean spiritedness, Hanna replies by passive aggressively saying, “What?  It’s a joke.  And this is a fork!”  (Apparently, Hanna hopes to one day add “homicide” to her growing list of criminal offenses.)  When Hanna’s father informs her that she will be paying off the cost of Sean’s car repairs by working at his father’s dentist office, she takes the opportunity to make another jibe at Kate and her rather large, fake teeth . . .

And yet, by the end of the night, it’s “A,” who gets the last laugh.  While Hanna is driving home from dinner (Wait!  They are still letting her DRIVE?), she learns that someone has made a dedication to her on the radio!

But it’s from A . . .

The song is called “I Don’t Need You Anymore,” and it more or less adequately describes the way Hanna’s father is treating her.  Ouch A!  Under the circumstances, threatening to kill Hanna at sea, or making fun of her horse teeth would have been WAY more humane!

And the Reward for Most Adorable Drunk Ever Goes To . . .

So, depending on how you look at it, Spencer is either having the best or the worst day ever.  On one hand, Spencer has been nominated for the prestigious Golden Orchid writing award.

. . . but it’s for a paper she STOLE from her sister.

She’s home alone, because the rest of her family went away to Europe and left her there to rot.

And SOMEONE BREAKS INTO HER HOUSE!

But it ends up just being Drunk Wren who LUUUUUUUUVES her and wants to hug, kiss, and squeeze her, forever and ever.

Except that while Spencer and Wren are getting their flirt on, some creepo is videotaping them from outside Spencer’s house!  Oh, and did I mention Wren dropped a  FLOWER POT on Spencer’s floor?

When Spencer leaves Drunk Wren off at the hotel, the two of them make out with one another hardcore!

And when she comes back, someone has cleaned up her flower pot mess for her . . .

But the flower pedals are arranged in the shape of the letter “A,” and a video camera is inside.  SOMEONE is (or was) in the house!

And then SOMEONE wrote “It won’t be that easy, b&tches,” on Spencer’s mirror, in the color of lipstick that Alison always wore!

And that’s all I’ve got folks.  What did you think of this week’s installment of Pretty Little Liars?  Think you are any closer to learning “A'”s identity, or that of Alison’s killer?  Were you as turned on by Drunk Wren as I was?  Are you a fan of Fitzy’s legs?  All important questions . . .

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Raiders of the Lost (Inner) Child – A Recap of Lost’s “Lighthouse”

“You may be the ‘Chosen Candidate’ Jack Shepard, but do YOU have a cool hat and whip?  I think not . . .”

Tonight’s installment of Lost was all about the kiddies!

More specifically, this episode dealt with finding and, coming to terms with, youth, both in the literal and metaphorical sense.  Tonight, Jack literally located and then reconciled with the son that none of us knew he had.  In doing so, he confronted his own daddy abandonment issues, and came one step closer to accepting his destiny as  . . .

The WINNING CANDIDATE for . . .

 In bat shit crazier news, Claire made a baby doll out of a dead animal carcass, fatally axed a guy, and majorly creeped out Poor Jin, all for the love of a boy named Aaron.

Oh and did I mention . . . the DONKEY WHEEL is back?

Let’s get down to business, shall we?

Dude, Where’s My Appendix?

When we last left Doctor Jack in Flash-Sideways World, he was at the airport, passing his business card off to a wheelchair-bound (but living) Locke, while filing a “lost luggage” claim for his dead dad’s coffin.  Now, back home in his apartment, Jack is on the phone with his mother, filling her in on all of the gory details of his trip, when he notices a scar on his stomach.  “When did I have my appendix out?’  Jack inquires.

Sidenote:  If you recall, in the original Lost timeline, Juliet diagnosed Jack with appendicitis and removed his appendix on the island in Season 4, Episode 10 “Something Nice Back Home.”

Jack’s mother explains that Jack had his appendectomy when he was about eight-years old.  I find it a bit strange that Alt World Jack wouldn’t remember having this particular surgery.  Sure, eight is a young age, but not so young that you wouldn’t remember something as traumatic as undergoing major surgery. 

Unlike the past flash-sideways we have seen, in which the Losties may exhibit brief flashes of “déjà vu” for their “original timeline” lives, but seem more or less at home in their new (?) skins, Jack seems completely (forgive the pun) “Lost” in Flash-Sideways world.  It is almost as though Island Jack has been plucked from the original timeline and placed in this new one, without being given any explanation as to how things are different here. 

 

or Jack Shephard?

Noting the time, Jack quickly gets off the phone with his Mommy and rushes to a nearby private school to pick up . . . HIS TEENAGE SON?  David Shepard?

“My brain hurts!”

Upon hearing the pair converse, it becomes immediately obvious that Jack’s and David’s relationship is strained.  In fact, Jack barely seems to know his son at all.  (Doesn’t remember his appendectomy, doesn’t know his son — is this merely a case of VERY early onset dementia or something odder?)

Back at the apartment, Jack notices that David is reading an annotated copy of Alice in Wonderland, the same story that Jack read to baby Aaron in “Something Nice Back Home.”

Curiouser and Curiouser . . .”

Jack leaves his son in the apartment and heads to his mother’s house, to help her find Jack’s father’s missing will.  When his mother finds it, she asks Jack if he knows “Claire Littleton.”  To which Jack replies . . .

“Hell yeah I do!   That bitch turned effing nuts!”

Actually, we don’t get to hear how Jack replies at all, because the producers cut away from the scene, before he can offer his response . . .  Does Alt World Jack know his half-sister Claire?  Only time will tell . . . hopefully.

When Jack returns to his apartment, his son is MIA.  Jack heads to his ex-wife’s (?) house, extracting its key from under a White Rabbit statute (yet another Alice in Wonderland reference).  Upon listening to his son’s answering machine, Jack learns that David has snuck off to a conservatory for an admissions audition.

Jack rushes to the conservatory, arriving just in time to hear his son play piano.  He beams with pride at his son’s clearly gifted musical talent.  As Jack watches from the wings, another father compliments David’s talents, and, noting the boy’s youth, asks how long he has been playing.  Wait a minute . . . we know that dad!  It’s . . .

POISON PILL GIVER, DOGEN!

Jack honestly admits that he doesn’t know how long his son has been playing. 

Something is definitely fishy here . . . 

Meeting up with David outside the Conservatory, Jack asks his son why the latter never told him about the audition.  David explains that, when he was younger, Jack was very intense about David’s piano lessons.  David feared Jack would see him as a failure if he didn’t perform perfectly at the audition.

Heartened by this confession, Jack tells David how Jack’s own father once told him that he “didn’t have what it takes” to succeed in medicine.  Jack explains to David that he loves him and could never ever consider him a failure.  Father and son both get a bit teary eyed, and it really feels as though Jack has righted his own father’s wrongs through this exchange.  Perhaps that was the whole point  . . .

 . . . and then comes the carcass in the baby carriage!

“HELLLLLP MEEEEE!”

Back on Lost island, Claire frees a very freaked out Jin from the bear trap in which he was caught last week.  She then expertly stitches up his wounded legs and takes him to her makeshift campsite, where she has presumably been living for about three years.  Jin does a bit of snooping here, and finds this really creepy baby basinet with a stuffed animal carcass inside.  I sure hope that’s machine washable . . .

Claire then drags Justin, the remaining living Other who accosted Jin last week, into her camp and ties him up.  With a freshly sharpened ax, Jungle Lady threatens to chop up Justin if he doesn’t tell her where her baby Aaron is.  Justin has no clue, and tells Claire as much.  Unfortunately for Justin, Claire doesn’t believe him.  After all, her father and “her friend” told her that the Others were hiding Aaron inside the temple.  When Claire walks away, Justin pleads with Jin to untie him.  He explains that if they don’t get away, Claire will kill them BOTH. 

Jin initially seems unconvinced.  After all, Claire may have bad hair right now, and poor taste in childrens’ toys, but Jin can’t truly see her harming HIM, a fellow Lostie!  Claire then shows Justin and Jin the scars she has sustained from when the Others tortured and branded her at the temple, presumably using the same technique on HER that Dogen used on Sayid the Maybe Zombie.

Jin comes clean to Claire, explaining that Kate had taken Aaron off the island and had raised him for three years.  Claire thanks Jin.  She then kills Justin, anyway.

“Not very nice, Claire Bear!”

Realizing that Claire is truly off her rocker, and beginning to fear for his friend Kate’s life, Jin takes back his words, explaning that he lied about Kate in an effort to save Justin’s life.  Jin then claims to know where Aaron is hidden, and offers to take Claire there.

Claire tells Jin that if Kate had taken Aaron, she would have killed her.  And just when it seems like things can’t get any weirder or scarier for Jin, “Locke” shows up . . . except he’s not Locke . . . of course.  He’s the Lockness Smokey Monster, a.k.a Claire’s  “friend” who told her that the Others had Aaron.

All Around the Donkey Wheel . . .

While in search of food, Hurley “I Talk to Dead People” Reyes encounters our dearly departed friend Jacob, who is in desperate need of Hurley’s help.  Jacob gives our “unlucky” friend a series of instructions, which the latter dutifully inscribes on his arm.  According to Jacob, Hurley needs to commandeer Jack in a special mission.   To get Jack on board, Hurley must tell Jack that “he has what it takes.”

The two trek off into the sunset, where they eventually come across this . . .

“How come we’ve never seen this before?” Hurley inquires.  (How indeed . . .)

Jack and Hurley trek to the top of the lighthouse and find what appears to be a replica of the infamous donkey wheel from last season, accented by a few mirrors, or “looking glasses,” if you prefer.  Printed around the wheel are a series of names and number similar to the ones Nu-Locke showed Sawyer in the cave during last week’s episode, with some notable differences.  For one thing . . .

Kate’s on the wheel!  She’s number 51!

Hurley instructs Jack to turn the wheel to number 108 (which has next to it the name “Wallace” – Who the heck is Wallace?), and then look in the mirror.  Annoyed that Jacob has refused to speak to Jack in person, Jack turns the wheel instead to his own name and the corresponding number 23.  He then looks in the mirror and is horrified to find his childhood home looking back at him.  In a huff, Jack breaks the mirror and storms out of the lighthouse.

Later, Jacob reappears to a disappointed Hurley who feels as though he failed in his task.  Jacob explains that things are going exactly as planned.  As the coach of Team Jacob, Ghost Man apparently knows exactly what it takes to bend people to his will.  For some, like Hurley, merely asking for a favor is all it takes.  But more stubborn folks like Jack, however, need to come to certain conclusions on their own, which is exactly what Jack appears to be doing at the end of this unbelievably complex episode.

So, what did you think of The Lighthouse?  Have you joined Team Jacob yet?  Were you relieved to find Kate’s name on the wheel?  Do you know where I can get a cool hairdo like Claire’s?

 

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