28 May 2013

Mad Men Recap: "The Better Half" [Or, The One Mosquitos Ignore]

Why is it that 75% of my Mad Men emotional energy is spent worrying that Roger Sterling is about to die? Even after Lane's suicide, I'm still constantly worried that another shoe is ready to drop. ROGER, STAY ALIVE. PLEASE! And Joan, DO WHAT YOU CAN TO KEEP HIM ALIVE! PLEASE!!! IF THIS MEANS MARRYING HIM AND HAVING HIM CO-RAISE KEVIN, SO BE IT!! I DON'T CARE WHAT YOU WANT! JUST DO IT!

20 May 2013

Game Of Thrones Recap: "Second Sons" [Or, "Never Saw It Coming"]

Sometimes danger's heading right for you and you never see it coming. Maybe you're a lamb and it's the butcher's blade. Maybe you're a nasty old mercenary and it's your handsome comrade's sword. Maybe you're a young, male virgin and it's a bunch of slimy, bloodthirsty leeches. Look, it's hard to have eyes in the back of your head. And even if you do know what's coming, sometimes it's hard to make yourself have sex with a 14-year-old, so you act like it's news to you that you'd have to consummate your own marrige. Of all the characters, only the Hound has the talent of knowing what's coming. I guess having your face held in a fire will make you alert to every angle danger may come from.

Mad Men Recap: "The Crash" [Or, "The Complete & Utter Fever Dream That Was Last Night's Episode"]

I should preface this by admitting I kept dozing off during Mad Men last night - not because it was boring, but because of the oddly drowsy mixture of traveling all day and then watching the entirety of SCDPCGC move in fast motion for an hour. I would close my eyes for a second, and then suddenly there'd be a strange woman in the Drapers' apartment. Or Ken would go from bruised hobbling to perfectly controlled tap dancing. Or Betty would be thin and blonde again. I kept waiting for Don to wake up from his nap on the couch. This isn't my dream OR his? Seriously?

***Oh, and by the way, Time Warner Cable erased our recording as soon as it ended. We were watching it a few minutes delayed, and then it just disappeared. THANKS AGAIN, TIME WARNER CABLE!

16 May 2013

Big Bang Theory: A Spec Script



Sheldon sits on the couch, figuring out a math formula on an imaginary chalkboard in front of him.
(cue laugh track
He "erases" some of his work furiously and "rewrites" something that makes him smile in satisfaction.
(cue laugh track)

Glasses Guy walks in through the front door.

Hey, uhhhh Sheldon? There's nothing in front of you!
(cue laugh track)

(cue laugh track)


14 May 2013

Game of Thrones Recap: "The Bear & The Maiden Fair"

Sure, Sunday night's Game of Thrones may have featured a huge and terrifying bear, three spiky dragons, and a cheeky psycho-imp wielding a castration tool, but I'm here to tell you folks that it was actually a tale of slavery and freedom, rather than monster nightmare fuel. Of all the horrifying things waiting to destroy you in Westeros (and beyond), the in/visible chains that keep you locked up are the most threatening. The slaves of Yunkai, Asshai, and even King's Landing are stuck that way indefinitely. At least with a giant bear, you'd die quickly.

Mad Men Recap: "Man with a Plan"

To be clear, no man (or woman) has any plan whatsoever in Sunday's episode of Mad Men. With the merger of CGC and SCDP at hand, new desk assignments fly around almost at random. The creative team flounders in vain to come up with a pitch for Fleischmann's margarine. Joan deals with her shooting stomach pain by ignoring it. Ted takes Don up in a plane through the worst thunderstorm of all time. These are people who look plans in the face and say "Nah, no thanks." But despite their best efforts, the lives of our SCDP employees seem to shape up into something useful anyway.

Don's affairs have always seemed to satisfy a chaos drive - he never knows if he'll get caught, how much these women will blab about their new suave boyfriend, or if they'll get disgruntled enough to try to murder him one day for being such a dick. By dating the housewife downstairs, Don's begging for a shitstorm.  And so, without realizing it, when he hears Sylvia come close to breaking up with Arnold, Don does his best to slip out of the affair. It might get too easy if she becomes single.

Sylvia calls Don at work on the first day of the big merger and demands his services. He has her go to a hotel and stay there for hours and hours, occasionally coming in to boss her around and say weird 50 Shades things like "Why would you think you're going anywhere? You're here for me. You exist in this room for my pleasure." When he leaves again and takes her book with him, Sylvia's finally like "Ok, that's it. That's enough. He took my book, so I'm done." Good call, Sylvia. There isn't even a tv in there. S&M may be cool or whatever, but sitting around in a dark room waiting for sex crap without even a magazine is NOT.

When Sylvia says goodbye, she tells him something along the lines of "it's time to go home." I can't wait to see what "home" means for Don. Megan has helped him through some psychological issues before, and I hope that can happen again. I want more of the whorehouse childhood and less of the "my young hot wife doesn't get me" claptrap. And PS, mark my words: you know how they swore up and down that Don and Peggy would never end up together? I'm just recording it here first: they will. Real-life Draper Daniels married his Peggy, and Lost lied to our FACES about how it wouldn't end up just being stupid Purgatory. I'm all for the complex, non-romantic nature of Don and Peggy's relationship, but I also have a hunch, and it needed to be said. Do I want it that way? Who knows! Is Damon Lindelof a total liar? Yes, absolutely!

For seeming so conniving, Ted Chaoueuoe is a surprisingly likable guy. He's forthright to a fault, giving up his chair for a secretary and sitting on the fact that he HAS A PILOTS LICENSE LIKE A FREAKING HERO. After holding a "rap session about margarine in general," Ted loses an unofficial drinking match with Don. His hospitalized ex-partner's advice to walk back into the office like he owns the place leads Ted to take Don up in his two-seater in the middle of a giant thunderstorm. It restores the balance of power between the two creatives. I mean, just look at Don's white knuckles:


As good as I feel about Ted's trustworthiness nowadays, it's hard to apply that feeling to Bob Benson. Granted, he takes Joan to the hospital when she desperately needs to go, and sure, his only real crime so far seems to be excessive brown-nosing. There's still something undeniably fishy about him. Maybe it's his ease in lying to a triage nurse, or maybe it's the way he tried to pay for Pete's hooker last week. This rug we're all standing on seems like it's about to be pulled. In the end, Bob's work pays off: Joan saves his position from a personnel-slashing Harry Hamlin. The plan has worked beautifully, and Bob Benson smells like a rose.

There's another merger in the episode, so to speak, and it's between Pete and his discombobulated mother. Pete's brother can't take care of her any longer, and it's time Pete pulls a little weight by taking care of her in his apartment. To his horror, she keeps calling him out of the office for help, and he keeps missing important meetings. It's no shock that when she wakes him up to tell him RFK died, he doesn't believe her. She is a plan-ruiner through and through, and she can't even keep Trudy vs. Judy straight. For God's sake, old age is inconvenient. I'm genuinely surprised Pete hasn't already tried to mercy-kill her with a pillow.

Plans are great, but they rarely go the way they're supposed to. Burt Peterson planned to return to SCDP with some respect, but Roger made sure to kill that dream immediately. Stan probably planned to stay mad at Peggy, but her knowledge of Napoleon trivia made that impossible. Megan's trying to plan a new vacation to Hawaii with Don, but that's not likely to happen either, at least not how she would want it. You know how the Yiddish say "Man plans, God laughs?" I bet Bob Benson's plans give God the SHIVERRRSSSSS!

photos courtesy amctv.com
gif courtesy nymag.com

13 May 2013

Game Of Thrones & Mad Men Recaps TOMORROW!

There is too much going on today for me to get out a good recap. I'm shooting to post both Game of Thrones & Mad Men by tomorrow! In the meantime, enjoy the Arrested trailer and this:


06 May 2013

Game of Thrones Recap: That's "The Climb!"

I've been watching a lot of Arrested lately, and it's coloring my perception of every other show. For instance, when Ygritte tells Jon Snow that she'll chop off his dick and wear it around her neck, I thought momentarily of Jaime wearing his own hand around his neck, then I spent thirty full minutes thinking about Buster's hand and how Game of Thrones just did such a good AD callback. (Jon even says "take my hand!" at one point!) Then Cersei reminded me of Lucille a little bit and Loras reminded me of Tobias ("It's more of a brooch, really") and I kept thinking about Arrested for thirty more minutes. Only 20 more days, guys!!!

Jon's climbing the Wall with Ygritte, RedHead, and Wargy. It's a treacherous adventure, icy wind cutting up their faces 400 feet in the air. At one point, Ygritte's pick splits a large chunk of ice right off the Wall, sending her and Jon plummeting. The warg wastes no time in cutting them off his rope, and Jon just barely survives and saves Ygritte. When they're all on top of the Wall, the two of them survey the vista. I'm like "kill the warg, though, right?" What the hold up is?

Melisandre finds the Brotherhood without Banners (even though the Mountain never could) and Gendry, specifically (even though the official story is that Gendry's dead). She greets her fellow Fire God devotees and seems surprised that Beric could be resurrected 6 times. How is she surprised? Melisandre drank poison once. Wasn't that the same sort of thing?

After her goons seize Gendry for this blood ritual, Arya confronts the red priestess. She's still too little to be a real threat, but Melisandre sees many many murders in Arya's future. And they'll meet again, she says. Good. I can't wait for Arya to become an awesome little assassin who kills dumb ladies like this one.

Theon's pint-sized torturer goes to town on his little finger (Littlefinger!) while answering questions about Theon's situation. Naturally, he's lying about all the answers, so now Theon knows less than ever before. He also has less finger-skin than ever before. Check out how many times the "flayed man" shape shows up in the episode:

What's going on there? We might as well bundle Jaime and Brienne into this section, too, because they have something else in common with Theon's torture scene: they drink wine that Lord Bolton won't drink while Theon's torturer pours out water Theon wants to drink. What's with all the non-drinking and the flayed man shapes? No rest for the weary? No water for the suffering, nor wine for the untrustworthy?

To fix Robb's mistake and regain access to Walder Frey's bridge, Edmure Tully must marry a Frey girl. He's understandably upset, and he wants to at least pick out the prettiest one. Robb hypocrites all over him and acts like that's totally unreasonable. Remember when Robb wanted to pick out the prettiest one? And then when he ditched the whole thing to marry some pretty third party? Nobody else seems to remember that.

Sansa tearfully watches a ship sail out of the bay, and I can't tell if it's Littlefinger's or Loras's, but either way, she knows her fate is with Tyrion now. Tywin has convinced Lady Olenna to marry Cersei to Loras by threatening him with Kingsguard status, thereby keeping him from procreating (like he would've anyway) and ending the Tyrell line. Poor Sansa has been thrown from one chess player to another so many times, she has no way to orient herself anymore. But at least she's faring better than Ros, whom Littlefinger has finally given to his interested "friend." And we all thought Margaery had curbed Joffrey's tendencies...


photos courtesy HBO

Mad Men Recap: "For Immediate Release"

When it rains, it pours. The second that a few partners at SCDP decide to take the company public, every single solitary thing that could possibly happen to the business happens to the business: Don cuts Jaguar loose. Roger scores a presentation with Chevy. Pete loses Vicks at a whorehouse. Cutler, Gleason, and Chaousugha join forces with Sterling, Cooper, Draper, and Price. CGCSCDP wins Chevy. Bob Benson burns the whole thing to the ground as he gallops around in maniacal laughter. (That part happens next week.) In the course of an hour, the agency runs the gamut of existence, and it feels a lot like the day SCDP was created in the first place.

Despite last week's reminder of his Cos Cob exile, Pete slips into bed with Trudy like it never happened. He's about to get rich by taking the company public, so obviously he deserves to have sex with his nonconsenting wife, who's wearing her most fabulous nightgown yet. Once rebuffed, Pete visits a whorehouse to celebrate plan-B style. It is there that he spies Trudy's father (and head of Vicks, one of SCDP's most important clients) with "the biggest, blackest prostitute you've ever seen." It's hilarious...until Trudy's father pulls his business from the agency the next day.

Pete visits Mr. ExplainsItAll to make sure he understands the idea of mutually assured destruction. Now that Pete's secret is out, the "biggest, blackest prostitute" secret is sure to follow. Trudy's father basically dares him to tell, and when Pete lays it all out on the table for Trudy, he doesn't gain much. Trudy's like "GET YOUR THINGS AND GO." I guess Pete's fully going through a divorce now. Poor, dumb baldy.

Peggy's West 80s apartment is cute and everything, and the neighborhood's totally vibrant and all, but the human shit on the staircase is getting a little old. I'm starting to reexamine Abe's "where our kids should grow up" shtick from last week. He said it so easily then, like manipulation was the farthest thing from his mind, but this week Abe seems distant and pissy. His late-60s shaggy mustache makes him look like college-aged Nick from New Girl. These mustaches don't want kids. They just want shitty marimba music at all hours of the night.

And so I'm forced to reexamine that other thing from last week's episode, the thing where Ted and Peggy shared a look at the awards dinner. "That's not what that is," I assured myself then. "He just admires her talent." But no, here are Ted and Peggy, each coming up with a paper-thin excuse to stay late at work. The aftermath of their inevitable kiss is far from what I expected; Ted seems happy to end it there while Peggy's ready for more. Our girl Peggy's got Lonely-Girlitis, such that she falls in love with any man who shows one iota of interest. Her giddiness about carrying Abe's future children pales in comparison to her willing participation in movie theater hand-jobs and late night boss-kissing. She's as horny and unfaithful as Don, Pete, and Pete's father-in-law, and I doubt she's going to stay in the West 80s for much longer.

Pete, Joan, and Bert Cooper have chosen to keep Don and Roger out of the going-public discussion, and I'm not sure why. The two absent partners have opposite responses to being kept in the dark: Don quits an old client while Roger picks up a new one. Jaguar's close to leaving the agency, and Don can sense it. Roger wants to take Herb the Prostitute-Maker out to a "spouse-packed" dinner to soften the blow, so Don brings Megan and her mother Marie (as Roger's date). Unfortunately, Roger bails completely and the ladies all go to the bathroom at the same time, leaving Don alone with Herb. Disgusted with Herb since the Joan debacle, Don gives him the what-for. While I can appreciate his moral outrage, Don just single-handedly sank the company without even checking with anyone first. Pete's so mad, he falls down the stairs. And, understandably, Joan is also VERY. PISSED. OFF.

Luckily for everyone, Roger's dating a stewardess! She tips him off whenever important-looking businessmen come into the airport, and Roger ends up getting a presentation with Chevy that way. SCDP gets to pitch the Car of the Future, and little do they know, CGC is pitching as well. Don and Roger find out about losing Vicks while they're on route to their meeting in Detroit. It casts a pretty dark shadow* over their pitch.
*Dark Shadows, get it?!

That night, a restless Don finds his way (yet again) to the hotel bar. Ted Chaoueullgh walks in with a loud "Damn it!" and ends up sharing a drink with his suave competitor. Their small agencies are always losing clients to the big guys, who end up stealing their ideas anyway. "Heyyyyyyy, waitttt a minutttteee!!!" Ted and Don say in unison, "What if WE become da big guy?!?!?! And steal our OWN ideas?!?!?!?!?!" From this point on, Ted and Don speak exclusively in unison for the rest of their lives.

"Wwweeeeeee arreeeeee combinnningggg compannieesssss," they explain to Peggy, whose Ted-boner deflates faster than a slashed tire. "Wrriiiiitee ourrr pressssssss releeeease!!!" She types up a notice set "for immediate release," and just like that, she's back to working with Don. LET'S JUST HOPE HE NEVER TRIES TO KISS HER!!!!

photos courtesy AMCTV.com and tumblr