Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Bones 9.22: Promotion

Well, Bones didn't keep us hanging on too long about the fingernail aka ghost serial killer this season. The case was broken open and solved in tonight's solid episode 9.22.

Along the way, we get some more good shots not only at the mega-rich, but against the government that all too easily marches to their tune.   Bones does take place in Washington, DC, and episodes that involve politicians are always welcome.

Our central characters all performed to good effect, too.   Sweets and Caroline are always at their best when they stand up to authority, and it was especially good to see Caroline with Booth's help make an uncooperative Federal agency back down.   Cam started out with her officious attitude, all too prominent in the past few episodes, but quickly saw the light about the need for Bones to be on the case even if it did go against some rules.  And Edison's commitment to Bones that he wouldn't rest until the killer was nabbed was one of the best scenes ever between Bones and an intern, even though Edison is no longer an intern.

But the most important part of the episode was the progress Booth was making - whether he fully wanted it or not - in his selection by the FBI to head up that new task force.  There has been a lot of speculation all over the web about what Bones and Booth would do if Booth was offered the job.  I've thought, as soon as the job possibility was raised, that there would be some unexpected twists and turns, but nothing that would put a wedge between the two.   Tonight we learn that Bones wrote her heart out in support of Booth for this position, and that Booth has indeed been offered it.

What this will do to the narrative of the series is anyone's guess.  But I'm thinking it's a safe bet that it will make Booth and Bones' relationship even stronger.

See also Bones 9.1: The Sweet Misery of Love ... Bones 9.2: Bobcat, Identity Theft, and Sweets ... Bones 9.3 and NCIS 11.2: Sweets and Ziva ... Bones 9.4: Metaphysics of Death in a Television Series ... Bones 9.5: Val and Deep Blue ... Bones 9.6: The Wedding ... Bones 9.7: Watch Out, Buenos Aires ...Bones 9.8: The Bug in the Neck ... Bones 9.9: Friday Night Bones in the Courtroom ... Bones 9.10: Horse Pucky ... Bones 9.11: Angels in Equations ... Bones 9.12: Fingernails ... Bones 9.13: Meets Nashville, and Wendell ... Bones 9.14: "You Cannot Drink Your Glass Away" ... Bones 9.15: Hodgins' Brother and the Ripped Off Toe ... Bones 9.16: Lampreys, Professors, and Insurance Companies ... Bones 9.17: Spartacus in the Kitchen ... Bones 9.18: Meets Day of the Triffids ... Bones 9.19: The Cornucopic Urn ... Bones 9.20: Above the Law ... Bones 9.21: Freezing and Thawing

And see also Bones 8.1: Walk Like an Egyptian ... Bones 8.2 of Contention ... Bones 8.3: Not Rotting Behind a Desk  ... Bones 8.4: Slashing Tiger and Donald Trump ... Bones 8.5: Applesauce on Election Eve ... Bones 8.6: Election Day ... Bones 8.7: Dollops in the Sky with Diamonds ...Bones 8.8: The Talking Remains ... Bones 8.9: I Am A Camera ... Bones 8.10-11: Double Bones ...Bones 8.12: Face of Enigmatic Evil ... Bones 8.13: Two for the Price of One ... Bones 8.14: Real Life ... Bones 8.15: The Magic Bullet and the Be-Spontaneous Paradox ... Bones 8.16: Bitter-Sweet Sweets and Honest Finn ... Bones 8.17: "Not Time Share, Time Travel" ... Bones 8.18: Couples ... Bones 8.19: The Head in the Toilet ... Bones 8.20: On Camera ... Bones 8.21: Christine, Hot Sauce, and the Judge ... Bones 8.22: Musical-Chair Parents ... Bones 8.23: The Bluff ... Bones Season 8 Finale: Can't Buy the Last Few Minutes

And see also Bones 7.1: Almost Home Sweet Home ... Bones 7.2: The New Kid and the Fluke ...Bones 7.3: Lance Bond and Prince Charmington ... Bones 7.4: The Tush on the Xerox ... Bones 7.5: Sexy Vehicle ... Bones 7.6: The Reassembler ... Bones 7.7: Baby! ... Bones 7.8: Parents ...Bones 7.9: Tabitha's Salon ... Bones 7.10: Mobile ... Bones 7.11: Truffles and Max ... Bones 7.12: The Corpse is Hanson ... Bones Season 7 Finale: Suspect Bones

And see also Bones 6.1: The Linchpin ... Bones 6.2: Hannah and her Prospects ... Bones 6.3 at the Jersey Shore, Yo, and Plymouth Rock ... Bones 6.4 Sans Hannah ... Bones 6.5: Shot and Pretty ... Bones 6.6: Accidental Relations ... Bones 6.7:  Newman and "Death by Chocolate" ...Bones 6.8: Melted Bones ... Bones 6.9: Adelbert Ames, Jr. ... Bones 6.10: Reflections ... Bones 6.11: The End and the Beginning of a Mystery ... Bones 6.12 Meets Big Love ... Bones 6.13: The Marrying Kind ... Bones 6.14: Bones' Acting Ability ... Bones 6.15: "Lunch for the Palin Family" ...Bones 6.16: Stuck in an Elevator, Stuck in Times ... Bones 6.17: The 8th Pair of Feet ... Bones 6.18: The Wile E. Chupacabra ... Bones 6.19 Test Runs The Finder ... Bones 6.20: This Very Statement is a Lie ... Bones 6.21: Sensitive Bones ... Bones 6.22: Phoenix Love ... Bones Season 6 Finale: Beautiful

And see also Bones: Hilarity and Crime and Bones is Back For Season 5: What Is Love? and 5.2: Anonymous Donors and Pipes and 5.3: Bones in Amish Country and 5.4: Bones Meets Peyton Place and Desperate Housewives and Ancient Bones 5.5 and Bones 5.6: A Chicken in Every Viewer's Pot and Psychological Bones 5.7 and Bones 5.8: Booth's "Pops" and Bones 5.9 Meets Avatar and Videogamers ... Bad Santa, Heart-Warming Bones 5.10 ... Bones 5.11: Of UFOs, Bloggers, and Triangles ... Bones 5.12: A Famous Skeleton and Angela's Baby ... Love with Teeth on Bones 5.13 ... Faith vs. Science vs. Psychology in Bones 5.14 ... Page 187 in Bones 5.15 ...Bones 100: Two Deep Kisses and One Wild Relationship ... Bones 5.17: The Deadly Stars ...Bones Under Water in 5.18 ... Bones 5.19: Ergo Together ...  Bones 5.20: Ergo Together ... Bones 5.21: The Rarity of Happy Endings ... Bones Season 5 Finale: Eye and Evolution


Like scientific mysteries and science fiction?  Check out The Pixel Eye

The Following 2.14: Twists and Deaths

Well, you have to hand it to The Following: they packed this season with so many characters, good and bad, that there's always room for a shocking death of a major player, and a bad guy somewhere getting an upper hand.

Last week, we saw Lilly killed.   But her twin sons are still alive and deadly kicking, and in tonight's episode 2.14, they get the drop on Claire, who has against all odds managed to survive a confrontation with Emma.

Indeed, Claire has killed Emma, and with her death, The Following loses one of its big-time sicko villains.  As Emma reminds Claire and us before she dies, Claire had been Joey's nanny for two years, becoming a de facto crucial part of Claire's family.  So it was only poetic justice that Claire offs Emma, as Emma tries to kill Claire.

But that's not the most shocking death in tonight's episode - assuming it was a death, and not a swift-of-hand misdirection.  The screen goes to black with Mike presumably shot by Joe, and, in the coming attractions for next week's season finale, we see no sign of Mike.   Of course, the shot ringing out could have come from Ryan, aiming at Joe (but not apparently hitting him), or anyone else.  Or, the shot could have been from Joe, but over Mike's head, or wounding Mike, or nowhere near Mike, for whatever reason.

I certainly hope it's one of those Mike-not-dead things.   Mike is usually my favorite character, the most human in many ways.  Yeah, I get that he in some way self-destructed when he gave into his impulse and killed Lilly.  But it would be mawkish, obvious television to punish him now with a fatal bullet from Joe.

So we'll see what happened to Mike next week, with the psycho twins and Claire converging on the cathedral with Joe and Ryan and the whole world looking via live streaming in the narrative, and millions looking at the narrative via television and web and however we watch our screens at 9pm on a Monday night these days.

See also The Following Is Back for Its Second Season ... The Following 2.2: Rediscovering Oneself ... The Following 2.3: Coalescing ... The Following 2.4: Psycho Families and Trains ... The Following 2.5: Turning Tides ... The Following 2.8: Coalescing? ... The Following 2.9: The Book Signing ... The Following 2.11: Lily not Joe ... The Following 2.13: The Downfall of Mike

And see also The Following Begins ... The Following 1.2: Joe, Poe, and the Plan ... The Following 1.3: Bug in the Sun ... The Following 1.4: Off the Leash ... The Following 1.5:  The Lawyer and the Swap ... The Following 1.7: At Large ... The Following 1.9: All in a Name, Or, Metaphor in the Service of Murder ... The Following 1.13: At Last Something of a Day for the Good Guys ... The Following Season 1 Finale: Doing Dead


Like a Neanderthal serial killer in the current world? Try The Silk Code

Monday, April 21, 2014

Game of Thrones 4.3: Who Will Save Tyrion?

Well, it looks as if  Little Finger, who had diminished to almost no role in last season's action, was behind the murder of King Joffrey last week.   His saving Sansa, which also suits his own goals of making someone other than him look like the killer, certainly supports the view that he was responsible for the poison.

Not that other major characters are not without powerful motive.  As Tyrion aptly says, everyone other than Cersei, who if nothing else loves her children, is suspect.  Certainly Stannis Baratheon is well served by Joffrey's demise, and, who knows, maybe that worm he consigned to the flames had some magical effect.   And Olenna articulated the benefits of Joffrey's death to her granddaughter - though we learn that because she didn't consummate her marriage with Joffrey, she's not really a full-fledged queen.

The most interesting developments continue to be in King's Landing, though we got some good scenes with Daenerys and in two places up North.   But Tywin's prepping of Joffrey's young brother for kingship, Jaime and Cersei, and most of all the progression of Tyrion for trial were all primo.

Again, I haven't read beyond the first novel, and the television series has shown us there's no telling about what might occur, so we have to assume that Tyrion is in real danger, even though he's the best character in the narrative.   Will Tywin let his son be put to death - much as his son's an embarrassment - and even though Tywin, savvy as he his, must know that it wasn't Tyrion who did the deed? Probably not, but I wouldn't bet on it.  Jaime wouldn't ordinarily let his brother be killed either - and he stands up for Tyrion to Cersei - but he's pretty much indicated in the past that he'd do anything for Cersei.  Has he changed so much that his devotion now has limits?   Also hard to say, and he does certainly still desire Cersei.

Season 4 is shaping up as the best season so far, with riveting story lines in the center and all the peripheries.

See also Games of Thrones Season 4 Premiere: Salient Points ... Game of Thrones 4.2: Whodunnit?

And see also Game of Thrones Back in Play for Season 2 ... Game of Thrones 2.2: Cersei vs. Tyrion

And see also A Game of Thrones: My 1996 Review of the First Novel ... Game of Thrones Begins Greatly on HBO ... Game of Thrones 1.2: Prince, Wolf, Bastard, Dwarf ... Games of Thrones 1.3: Genuine Demons ... Game of Thrones 1.4: Broken Things  ... Game of Thrones 1.5: Ned Under Seige ... Game of Thrones 1.6: Molten Ever After ... Games of Thrones 1.7: Swiveling Pieces ... Game of Thrones 1.8: Star Wars of the Realms ... Game of Thrones 1.9: Is Ned Really Dead? ... Game of Thrones 1.10 Meets True Blood

And here's a Spanish article in Semana, the leading news magazine in Colombia, in which I'm quoted about explicit sex on television, including on Game of Thrones.

And see "'Game of Thrones': Why the Buzz is So Big" article in The Christian Science Monitor, 8 April 2014, with my quotes.


"I was here, in Carthage, three months from now." 


Mad Men 7.2: Flowers and the Hung-Up Phone

A really fine Mad Men 7.2 tonight, with all sorts of funny and sage moments, spread out over at least three story lines.

I guess the funniest was Pete talking on the phone to Roger, after Roger had hung up the phone.  This perfectly typifies the story of Pete's life, in the firm and out, making his points, playing the game with sincerity, often to have his words fall on deaf or closed ears.

Back in New York - the Pete thread was half in California, half in New York - we have a brilliant vignette of flowers, assumptions, racism, and their consequences.   Shirley's fiance leaves flowers for her - it's Valentine's Day - which Peggy wrongly thinks were left for her from afar by Ted.   This also has been the story of Peggy's life at the firm.  Always being cut short from what she may or may not want, smart as can be yet misunderstanding crucial things.  The error is understandable - Shirley is Peggy's receptionist - but it sets in motion an unpredictable, hilarious, and in the end profound chain of consequences.

When Shirley finally tells Peggy the truth, she directs her fury at Shirley for not telling her sooner, and wants her out of her secretary desk.   Dawn has already gotten marching orders - actually given to Joan, who must enforce them, as office manager - by the boring guy who's in Don's office, and who doesn't want Dawn doing Don's business on his (the boring guy's) time.   Joan has put Dawn in the front of the office as the receptionist people see when they first come in the office, and moved the receptionist who was previously there to the boring guy's (ok, Lou's) office.   But Bert doesn't want an African-American woman to be in the front of the office (Dawn and Shirley are both African-American).  He tells Joan to get her out of there.

What does Joan do?   The solution is given to her when Jim suggests that she move upstairs and work just as an account executive, and find someone else to be office manager.  In an ingenious, superb stroke, Joan makes Dawn the new office manager - a nice promotion.   It's unclear where Shirley will be - maybe Joan's secretary - but Joan has really excelled in doing the right thing in spite of the bigotry and pettiness of the office.

And, for dessert, we get one of the best sequences in years between Don and Sally, in which Don, for once in his life, is entirely truthful with Sally, and even manages to fake her out - to use that great 1960s expression - about pretending to be plotting not to pay the restaurant bill.

Just the kind of Mad Men worth waiting a year to see.

See also Mad Men 7.1: Vignettes and Playboy

And see also Mad Men 6.1-2: The Lighter and the Twist ... Mad Men 6.3: Good Company ... Mad Men 6.4: McLuhan, Heinz, and Don's Imagination ... Mad Men 6.5: MLK ... Mad Men 6.6: Good News Comes in a Chevy ...  Mad Men 6.7: Merger and Margarine ... Mad Men 6.8: Dr. Feelgood and Grandma Ida ... Mad Men 6.9: Don and Betty ... Mad Men 6.10: Medium Cool ... Mad Men 6.11: Hand in the Cookie Jar and Guy de Maupassant ... Mad Men 6.12: Rosemary's Baby, Dick Cheney, and Sunkist ... Mad Men Season 6 Finale: Beyond California

And see also Why "You Only Live Twice" for Mad Men Season 5 Finale ... Mad Men Season Five Finale

And see also Mad Men Season 5 Debut: It's Don's Party  ... Mad Men 5.3: Heinz Is On My Side ... Mad Men 5.4: Volunteer, Dream, Trust ... Mad Men 5.5: Ben Hargrove ... Mad Men 5.6: LSD Orange ... Mad Men 5.7: People of High Degree ... Mad Men 5.8: Mad Man and Gilmore Girl ...Mad Men 5.9: Don's Creativity  ... Mad Men 5.10: "The Negron Complex" ... Mad Men 5.11: Prostitution and Power ... Mad Men 5.12: Exit Lane

And from Season 4: Mad Men 4.1: Chicken Kiev, Lethal Interview, Ham Fight ... 4.2: "Good Time, Bad Time?" "Yes." ... 4.3: Both Coasts ... 4.4: "The following program contains brief nudity ..." 4.5: Fake Out and Neurosis ... 4.6: Emmys, Clio, Blackout, Flashback  ... 4.7: 'No Credits on Commercials' ... 4.8: A Tale of Two Women ... 4.9: "Business of Sadists and Masochists" ...4.10: Grim Tidings ... 4.11: "Look at that Punim" ... 4.12: No Smoking!  ... Mad Men Season 4 Finale: Don and -

And from Season 3Mad Men Back for 3 and 3.2: Carvel, Penn Station, and Diet Soda and 3.3: Gibbon, Blackface, and Eliot and 3.4: Caned Seats and a Multiple Choice about Sal's Patio Furniture and 3.5: Admiral TV, MLK, and a Baby Boy and 3.6: A Saving John Deere and 3.7: Brutal Edges ... August Flights in 3.8 ... Unlucky Strikes and To the Moon Don in 3.9 ... 3.10: The Faintest Ink, The Strongest Television ... Don's Day of Reckoning in Mad Men 3.11 ... Mad Men 3.12: The End of the World in Mad Men ... Mad Men Season 3 Finale: The End of the World

And from Season TwoMad Men Returns with a Xerox and a Call Girl ... 2.2: The Advertising Devil and the Deep Blue Sea ... 2.3 Double-Barreled Power ... 2.4: Betty and Don's Son ... 2.5: Best Montage Since Hitchcock ... 2.6: Jackie, Marilyn, and Liberty Valance ... 2.7: Double Dons... 2.8: Did Don Get What He Deserved? ... 2.9: Don and Roger ... 2.10: Between Ray Bradbury and Telstar ... 2.11: Welcome to the Hotel California ... 2.12 The Day the Earth Stood Still on Mad Men ... 2.13 Saving the Best for Last on Mad Men

And from Season OneMad Men Debuts on AMC: Cigarette Companies and Nixon ... Mad Men 2: Smoke and Television ... Mad Men 3: Hot 1960 Kiss ... Mad Men 4 and 5: Double Mad Men ...Mad Men 6: The Medium is the Message! ... Mad Men 7: Revenge of the Mollusk ... Mad Men 8: Weed, Twist, Hobo ... Mad Man 9: Betty Grace Kelly ... Mad men 10: Life, Death, and Politics ...Mad Men 11: Heat! ... Mad Men 12: Admirable Don ... Mad 13: Double-Endings, Lascaux, and Holes