Monday, November 29, 2010

The Event 1.10: Satellite

Well, another bit of evidence - all but irrefutable - that those folks who don't age on The Event are aliens from space.   In episode 1.10 just on the East Coast tonight,  Thomas launches a satellite.

The President and his advisors, in true 24-fashion, thought until after the launch itself that the payload was a nuclear weapon, aimed at the United States.  The fact that it was a satellite, with transmission turned out towards the universe (not back to Earth, like our telecom satellites), showed not only that it was not intended to destroy us (at least, not immediately) but it likely was also not intended to communicate just across time.

Of course, for all we know, it is some sort of tachyon communication device across time, too.   But, at very least, even if there is a time travel (or communicating across time) element, it is coupled with a transmission out into space too.   In other words, whatever else these ageless people may be, they seem to have an undeniable outer space connection.

By the way, while we're on the subject of communicating across time, we of course do that all the time.   You're reading this blog whenever - but I'm writing it now at about 10:21pm Eastern time - in other words, these words have traveled x number of minutes, hours, days, maybe years (depending upon when you're reading this) across time, in the good old natural way that started when the first humans carved or painted something upon a wall or tree.   We also do this every time look at a photograph.

That kind of time-honored travel across time of information is not what science fiction is talking about when its characters and authors and fans speak about communicating across time.   In the case of The Event, if what's going on is communication across time, what would be happening is sending information back in time or directly to the future - as in Greg Benford's Timescape - both of which are something extraordinarily difficult or even impossible, as far as know, or at least would engender mind-lacerating paradox.

Ah, I could write about this stuff all night!

Anyway, the other big news in tonight's Event is that Leila's father is alien!  Or, at least, he doesn't age.   Someone suggested this in a comment to my review of last week's Event.  Hey - maybe he/she was able to glimpse the future ...


5-min podcast review of The Event

See also The Event Debuts on NBC ... The Event 1.2: Aliens! ... The Event 1.4: 24 Back in Action! ... The Event 1.6: Not Only Aliens, Immortals! ... The Event 1.7: The Portal and its Implications  ... The Event 1.8: The "Republican" VP and the Anti-24 ... The Event 1.9: "Native Populations, Indigenous People"





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The Plot to Save Socrates




"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dexter 5.10: Monsters - Worse and Better

First a few words about the diverse forces arrayed against Dexter, brought ever closer to the boil in the steely powerful emotional dynamite of episode 5.10,  just on Showtime.

Peter Weller's relentless Liddy now has Dex on video, plotting with Lumen the murder of Alex, the last of Lumen's torturers other than Jordan Chase.   Quinn's demand to Liddy that he back off has already been ignored.  What or who will stop Liddy?   If it's Dexter, how will be able to keep that from Quinn and in turn Deb?

Chase is on to Dexter, too - he sees Dex and Lumen enter Alex's home, presumably to kill him.  Fortunately for Dex and Lumen, they kidnap Alex and kill him in one of Dexter's special rooms.  Good thing, because Chase has called Deb, and drawn her and Quinn to Alex's home.

But this was still a night of rare beauty and transcendent goodness for Dexter.  Not just because he allows Lumen to kill Alex, but because of what happens after.   Harry, Dexter tells us, made Dex think he was a monster.   But when he and Lumen make love - at Lumen's behest - Dex knows that he's something much better.  He's capable of caring in a way no monster could.  We already knew this about Dexter in the love he has for his children.   Now we see the beginning of this in the way he relates to Lumen - far more real for him than what he had with Rita.

But though love may conquer all, it may not be enough to save Dex and Lumen as a couple.  They face two villains, as indicated above - Liddy and Chase - and as Dex muses early in this episode, when seeing the DVDs of the torturing of 13 women by Chase's deranged group of five, it "still comes as a shock when confronted with the depth of evil that exists in this world".

A shock not only to us, but to Dexter, who was always but is now even far more of a better human being.  Odd to think of any serial killer as a better human being, but that's always been the compelling enigma of Dexter.


5-min podcast review of Dexter

See also Dexter Season Five Sneak Preview Review ... Dexter 5.4: Dexter's Conscience ... Dexter 5.8 and Lumen ... Dexter 5.9: He's Getting Healthier

And see also
Dexter Season 4: Sneak Preview Review ... The Family Man on Dexter 4.5 ... Dexter on the Couch in 4.6 ... Dexter 4.7: 'He Can't Kill Bambi' ... Dexter 4.8: Great Mistakes ... 4.9: Trinity's Surprising Daughter ... 4.10: More than Trinity ... 4.11: The "Soulless, Anti-Family Schmuck" ... 4.12: Revenges and Recapitulations

See also reviews of Season 3: Season's Happy Endings? ... Double Surprise ... Psychotic Law vs. Sociopath Science ... The Bright, Elusive Butterfly of Dexter ... The True Nature of Miguel ... Si Se Puede on Dexter ... and Dexter 3: Sneak Preview Review

Reviews of Season 2: Dexter's Back: A Preview and Dexter Meets Heroes and 6. Dexter and De-Lila-h and 7. Best Line About Dexter - from Lila and 8. How Will Dexter Get Out of This? and The Plot Gets Tighter and Sharper and Dex, Doakes, and Harry and Deb's Belief Saves Dex and All's ... Well

See also about Season 1: First Place to Dexter




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The Plot to Save Socrates





"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Saturday, November 27, 2010

re-mastered vinyl of Twice Upon a Rhyme 1972 album to be issued this week

With the release of the vinyl re-pressing of my 1972 album, Twice Upon a Rhyme, by Sound of Salvation Records just days away, I thought I would post their press release about the album ...

PAUL LEVINSON – TWICE UPON A RHYME
Label: The Sound of Salvation
Catalogue No: SOS 001
Release date: 6th December 2010
Format: LP (250 hand numbered copies on heavyweight virgin vinyl)

The Sound of Salvation is proud to announce its first release - a limited edition vinyl re-pressing of Paul Levinson’s 1972 album Twice Upon a Rhyme.

Twice Upon a Rhyme was recorded at several New York City studios between July 1969 and October 1971, including A-1 Studios, operated by legendary Atlantic Records co-founder Herb Abramson. Music greats such as Boris Midney played saxophone, clarinet, and drums on some of the cuts.  This album was obviously a labour of love for Paul, something that comes across in the music, lifting it above many other private pressings.

Paul poured his heart and soul into this album and it shows. On first listen it struck a chord and became an obsession with me. It’s an album that harks back to the 1960s folk rock sound of Simon & Garfunkel and the Lovin' Spoonful, mixes it with psychedelic flourishes a la the Moody Blues, the layered harmonies of the Beachboys, and rounds it off with a shot of Paul’s inner self.  It also manages to sound fresh and anticipates such Elephant 6 artists of the 1990s as the Olivia Tremor Control and Apples in Stereo.
On its original release in 1972 by Levinson's own HappySad Records, Twice Upon a Rhyme gained some exposure, with local radio play and reviews, and then quietly slipped into the ether.

Three decades later, in July 2002, Japan's Record Collectors Magazine featured Twice Upon a Rhyme in its roundup of American 1960s "Psychedelic Movements". The reviewer, Taro Miyasugi, said, "It's human mystical pop music... wonderful songs."
Seemingly from nowhere, Twice Upon a Rhyme had a whole new life, a second chance to impress. And this time round the album gained high praise from three of the most respected guides of underground music - Tapestry of Delights and Acid Archives (reviews shown below) and a listing in Hans Pokora’s 4001 Record Collector’s Dreams.

The album has its own page on Wikipedia.
Twice Upon a Rhyme was also re-issued on CD with detailed LP-replica packaging by Big Pink/Beatball Records in Korea in 2008 and by Vivid Records in Japan in 2009.  It’s available on iTunes (http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/twice-upon-a-rhyme/id343741003), Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B002ZSCTWC/ref=nosim/?tag=dexter2a-20), and the major digital outlets.
 
Its songs have been covered by new voices ranging from singer-songwriter James Harris in England (http://www.myspace.com/music/8734902/songs/10298051) to chill house artists JhaVoice and QRock639 in Los Angeles (http://kayaro.blogspot.com/2010/10/jhavoice-covers-learn-to-learn-by-paul.html).

After the original release of Twice Upon A Rhyme, Paul Levinson went on to become a successful science fiction writer, a noted American media commentator, and professor of communication and media studies at Fordham University in New York City.
 
The song titles for this re-mastered, re-pressed vinyl re-issue are below. Links to MP3s of two of the songs follow. We have a limited number of test pressings for reviewers, and will accommodate as many requests as possible.  (MP3s of the remastered songs, and CD copies of the original album, are also available.)  The album will be available for sale online and in record stores in the UK, US, and Japan.

--The Sound of Salvation
Contact: Anthony Nyland
Address: 12 Cronton Park Close, Widnes, Cheshire WA8 5DR, UK
Tel: 0151 424 4040
Mobile: 07766235392

Paul Levinson – Twice upon a Rhyme
Mono
Side One:
  
  1. "Today Is Just Like You" 2:45
  2. "Looking For Sunsets 
            (In the Early Morning)"  3:23
  3. "Gentle Blue Cherry Bell"  4:33
  4. "I'm Seeing You In A Different Light"  2:55
  5. "Learn To Learn"  3:25
  6. "Looks Like A Night 
            (I Won't Catch Much Sleep In)"  4:00
  7. "Raincheck"  4:12
  
Side Two:
  8. "You Are Everywhere"  4:15
  9. "Forever Friday"  4:08
 10. "The Soft Of Your Eyes"  3:41
 11. "Antique Shop 
            (The Coming Of Winter)"  4:06
 12. "Not Yet Ready To Say Goodbye"  2:21
 13. "The Lama Will Be Late This Year"  7:21



REVIEWS
The Acid Archives

Paul Levinson (NY)

Twice Upon a Rhyme 1972 (HappySad - 3000)

Enjoyable but still fairly unknown LP of 1968-69 Buckley & Hardin-style folkrock with stoned psych vibe throughout, lots of warmth and personality and idiosyncratic vocals. Full rock setting with feedback guitars, organ and druggy sound effects create a flowing "Blonde on Blonde" like feel and many layers and unpredictable moves. Upbeat 1960s vibe rather than the usual 1970s downers. Highpoints include weird, dreamy tracks such as "Friday Forever" and "The Lama Will The Late This Year" (my personal anthem). Levinson is well known writer and media commentator today.

Tapestry of Delights

Paul Levinson
Twice Upon a Rhyme
(Recorded in mono)
A local New York private pressing recorded between July 1969 and October  1971. At their best, Levinson and his crew produce dark, druggy pop music remindful of neighbours The Patron Saints or bayou obscuros Feather Da Gamba. "Forever Friday," "Looking for Sunsets (in the Early Morning)" and "You Are Everywhere" fit this profile. "The Lama will be Late This Year" is probably the most intriguing cut on the album, having as it does an oddly Syd Barrett-like delivery of the lyrics and some pretty unorthodox music with fuzz guitar leads.






more about my music at http://myspace.com/paullevmusic

In Treatment 3.5.4: Why Didn't Paul Kiss Adele?

So, although were outstandingly great sessions in In Treatment, Week 5 - with just brilliant acting all around, Irrfan Khan as Sunil, Debra Winger as Frances, and Dane DeHaan's tour-de-force performance as Jesse (not to mention Gabriel Byrne's peerless portrayal of Paul) - I'm still most captivated by the developing story of Paul and Adele (sensitively played by Amy Ryan).   That's because I'm a sucker for romance and meta-story (that is, Paul on the other side of the conversation) both.

The sparks that started to fly with Paul and Adele last week continue.   Paul starts talking about his feelings for Adele, then backs off.  But, most significantly, at least twice in their conversation, Adele indicates a little annoyance - nonverbally, in her facial expressions, and a little in the tone of her voice - that Paul is stopping short of telling her what he was fantasizing about doing with her.  

Now, was this annoyance coming from Adele as therapist, a bit frustrated that Paul is still shying away from going all the way in telling her his deepest feelings?  Or, was this annoyance coming from Adele as a woman attracted to Paul, a bit frustrated that Paul is still shying away from, well, telling her about his desire to go all the way with her ... (that's probably the first time in decades I've used that lame euphemism, I couldn't resist).   You tell me.

It all comes to a head - the tension and attraction between Paul and Adele - when Paul stands up to leave at the end of the session.  His face is close to Adele's, and I was thinking he'd kiss her.   But he did not - still unwilling to commit to even a kiss.

So here's my hope for the show:   Paul and Adele get together, maybe even marry.   Paul no longer needs therapy, because he's finally with someone who makes him happy (and who was not his patient).   Would this happen in real life?  Probably not, because Adele as a professional therapist would likely not let it happen, regardless of how she felt about Paul.

But, hey, this is television.


5-min podcast review of In Treatment

See also Back in Treatment 3.1.1-3: Bengali Candy, Twitter, and Superb ... In Treatment 3.4.4: Paul and Adele

And Season Two reviews:  Back in Treatment on HBO ... Back in Treatment: Three More Fine Times ... 2.1-2: Fathers and Daughters ...2.3-5: A Senior, A First Love, A Boy and His Turtle ... Sleep and Ethics ... In Treatment, In Retrospect

And Season One reviews: In Treatment on HBO ... 2. Scalding ... 3. Triangle ... 4. Love and Death ... 6. Paul's Greatest Strength ... 6. Paul's Boat ... 7. Alex in the Sky with Diamonds ... 8. A Princely Performance ... In Treatment Concludes (For Now)





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The Plot to Save Socrates



"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Thursday, November 25, 2010

In Treatment 3.4.4: Paul and Adele

Just watched In Treatment 4.4.4 with Paul and Adele, which turned out (I'm happy to say) to be about Paul and Adele in more ways than patient and therapist.   Or actually, in one so-important way, or at least the beginning of it.

Paul had been telling Adele that he had been distracted when having sex with Wendy, that the passion was gone.   Paul backed away when Adele asked him to say more, when she asked him what had distracted him, what he had been really thinking about.  I just knew the answer from Paul would - "you".

And, sure enough, when Adele later coaxes Paul again to stop backing away from his deeper feelings, to stop being on the outside looking in (I could hear Antony and the Imperials singing, though it wasn't on the show), Paul tells her that he had been thinking of Adele when was having sex with Wendy (making love would be too much, and sleeping with would be a lame euphemism for this situation).

How did Adele take it?  I think she liked it - a lot.   Paul soon says I know, this is transference, and having been on the receiving end of it (best seen in the first season with sensuous Laura),  it's only right that it's happening now with him on the giving end.    But I don't care all that much if it's transference or not.   Unlike Gina, who as an almost-mother figure was not likely to be an erotic desire of Paul, Adele could in many ways be just right for him.

So this situation bears watching - which I'll be doing in a few minutes, as I catch up with week 5 of this great third season.  By the way, all the sessions warrant watching.  I wrote about the first Sunil and Francis sessions, but not yet about Jesse's - which may just be the best this season.

More soon, in the meantime, here a little taste of Smokey Robinson doing the Anthony and the Imperials classic  ... I'm On the Outside (Looking In)

See also Back in Treatment 3.1.1-3: Bengali Candy, Twitter, and Superb

And Season Two reviews:  Back in Treatment on HBO ... Back in Treatment: Three More Fine Times ... 2.1-2: Fathers and Daughters ...2.3-5: A Senior, A First Love, A Boy and His Turtle ... Sleep and Ethics ... In Treatment, In Retrospect

And Season One reviews: In Treatment on HBO ... 2. Scalding ... 3. Triangle ... 4. Love and Death ... 6. Paul's Greatest Strength ... 6. Paul's Boat ... 7. Alex in the Sky with Diamonds ... 8. A Princely Performance ... In Treatment Concludes (For Now)




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The Plot to Save Socrates



"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

NCIS 8.9: Leon's Story

If last week's NCIS was mostly about Ziva's father (Enemies Foreign, 8.8), tonight's NCIS (the continuation of 8.8, Enemies Domestic, 8.9) was mostly about Leon.  And it turns out that neither is an enemy - neither to the good guys, nor to each other.  Rather, each is the target of enemies, foreign and domestic.

Last week, our team, aided by two Mossad agents, seemed to have succeeded in stopping the Palestinians (enemies foreign) from killing Eli David - until the last scene showed us Eli's loyal bodyguard Haddar dead on the floor.  So did the Palestinians outwit us and the Israelis?

Nope.   The death of Haddar - and the serious injury of Leon (who was with Eli and Haddar) was the work of a completely different enemy.  A domestic enemy.

Before we find out who this, we see a series of great flashbacks ... Leon is recruited in 1991 by Whitney Sharp (Catherine Dent) who at some point had a one-night stand with lucky Ducky ... Leon meets McCallister (Michael O'Neill) and Eli ...  These characters are perfected youthed (I made that word up, to indicated the opposite of aged) - the same actors play them as the 1991 characters.   And Leon, Whitney, and Eli, especially, really look much younger.

We also see Gibbs in 1999, with a slightly older Leon, about to go on assignment and meet Jenny.   This is the beginning not only of Gibbs' relationship with Jenny, but of his relationship with Leon, which is far deeper than we previously realized.

It is that relationship which makes Gibbs especially devoted to finding Leon's near killer, and to arming Leon with a knife in his hospital room, as Gibbs realizes that Leon not Eli was the real target of the bomb in the house.

I won't tell you the ending, but suffice to say one of the above people is the would-be killer, and Leon puts that knife to good use.


5-min podcast review of NCIS

See also NCIS Back in Season 8 Action ... NCIS 8.2: Interns! ... NCIS 8.3: Tiff! ... NCIS 8.4: Gary Cooper not John Wayne ... NCIS 8.5: Dead DJ, DiNozzo Hoarse, and Baseball ... NCIS 8.6: The Written Woman ... NCIS 8.7: "James Bond Movie Directed by Fellini" ... NCIS 8.8: Ziva's Father

And see also NCIS  ... NCIS 7.16: Gibbs' Mother-in-Law Dilemma ... NCIS 7.17: Ducky's Ties ... NCIS 7.18: Bogus Treasure and Real Locker ... NCIS 7.21: NCIS Meets Laura ... NCIS Season 7 Finale: Retribution



                 Special Discount Coupons for Angie's List, Avis, Budget Car, eHarmony, eMusic, Mozy, Zazzle





The Plot to Save Socrates



"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

The Event 1.9: "Native Populations, Indigenous People"

These are the phrases Sophia uses to describe us, the people of Earth in 2010 - "native populations, indigenous people" - in The Event 1.09.  Proof enough that the aliens are really aliens or EBEs, not time-travelers?   Use of "indigenous" to describe a people inhabiting a past or a future is a bit of a stretch - "indigenous" and "native" seem more about place than time - but I suppose this is not yet 100% proof that the aliens are aliens.   But if "portal" opened the door a little more last week to the time traveler interpretation, "indigenous" closed it back a little, I would say.  The Event is doing a good job of keeping that question in weekly, door-swinging-back-and-forth play.

Sophia was warning her people not to violate their version of the Star Trek Prime Directive - if you stay here in this place (and/or time), you will do great damage to the native population.  The EBEs who have spent more than 60 years mixing with us natives want to stay.

This includes her son Thomas and his lover, played by Necar Zadegan, last seen to good effect on in the final season of 24 as President Hassan's brave wife (well, I and lots of other people have been saying how reminiscent parts of The Event are to 24).   And there was more 24 stuff in the continuing saga of the weak, treacherous Republican-like Vice President tonight, too.

But the big story was the confrontation between Thomas and Sophia.  Thomas, egged on by Necar (or Isabelle, the character she's playing) is set to kill his mother, and inherit her leadership of the aliens.  But he can't - Sophia stares, talks, and mothers him down.   And then Sophia gets Isabelle to shoot herself in the leg as a sign of feality.

So as we move on to the Fall Season Finale of The Event next week - it will return in January - we see Sophia stronger than ever, the President still behind the eight-ball, and Leila and Sean still on the run.  A good mix, with anything possible ...

See also The Event Debuts on NBC ... The Event 1.2: Aliens! ... The Event 1.4: 24 Back in Action! ... The Event 1.6: Not Only Aliens, Immortals! ... The Event 1.7: The Portal and its Implications  ... The Event 1.8: The "Republican" VP and the Anti-24








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The Plot to Save Socrates





"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book
 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Dexter 5.9: He's Getting Healthier

A very important episode of Dexter on Showtime last night - 5.9 - in which Dex, more than any other time in the series, is showing profound signs of getting over his sociopathic lack of feeling for people in the world.

His complex love of Rita - and straightforward Harrison, Astor, Cody - was the beginning, and this goes back at least a year or two, regarding Rita and her children.  But last night, Dexter gives a father who is beating his daughter a painful warning - a beating by Dexter, in all the right places.  This is one of the most normal things Dexter has ever done, and Harry agrees.

Later, as Dexter takes Astor home to her grandparents, Dexter tells her he loves her.   That statement came more from the heart than just about any words we've seen uttered by Dexter. 

Add to this Dexter's empathy for Lumen, and I'd say we have evidence of an emerging new Dexter.

This is not to say Dexter's thoroughly outgrown his lust for killing those who deserve it.  He's still hunting with relish the "tick, tick, tick" guy who joined in and maybe engineered the brutal assault of Lumen.   But this older more recognizable Dexter is now clearly merging with a new, healthier persona.

Life, of course, will be no easier for Dexter, especially given the fact Liddy has photos of Dexter and Lumen throwing bags with body parts off of Dexter's boat, and Liddy's not back off ... In fact, as Harry always reminds Dexter and us, genuine feelings are always a danger for Dexter, and could lead to his giving himself away ...

See also Dexter Season Five Sneak Preview Review ... Dexter 5.4: Dexter's Conscience ... Dexter 5.8 and Lumen

And see also
Dexter Season 4: Sneak Preview Review ... The Family Man on Dexter 4.5 ... Dexter on the Couch in 4.6 ... Dexter 4.7: 'He Can't Kill Bambi' ... Dexter 4.8: Great Mistakes ... 4.9: Trinity's Surprising Daughter ... 4.10: More than Trinity ... 4.11: The "Soulless, Anti-Family Schmuck" ... 4.12: Revenges and Recapitulations

See also reviews of Season 3: Season's Happy Endings? ... Double Surprise ... Psychotic Law vs. Sociopath Science ... The Bright, Elusive Butterfly of Dexter ... The True Nature of Miguel ... Si Se Puede on Dexter ... and Dexter 3: Sneak Preview Review

Reviews of Season 2: Dexter's Back: A Preview and Dexter Meets Heroes and 6. Dexter and De-Lila-h and 7. Best Line About Dexter - from Lila and 8. How Will Dexter Get Out of This? and The Plot Gets Tighter and Sharper and Dex, Doakes, and Harry and Deb's Belief Saves Dex and All's ... Well

See also about Season 1: First Place to Dexter









The Plot to Save Socrates


"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Boardwalk Empire 1.10: Arnold Rothstein, Media Theorist

"It's the age of information," Arnold Rothstein tells Lucky Lucianio and the D'Alessios just before he takes the bros to task for bungling the assassination of Nucky last week.  And - wait, I thought ours was the age of information - I've written half a dozen books on how the Internet and the media it offers (including blogging) have changed our world - but, you know, Rothstein was right, as well, about his age being the age of information, of the dawn of news by wire, of radio, as he said.  They're still miracles even today.  (I wrote about that too in The Soft Edge: A Natural History and Future of the Information Revolution.)

The other scene I really loved in Boardwalk Empire 1.10 was the bar mitzvah in Chicago, with Al and Torrio as guests.   The ceremony and talk in the synagogue was something the Coen Brothers would have enjoyed, replete with a congregant giving Al a great explanation of yarmulkes, and why he should wear one in the synagogue.

Ok, there was another fine scene - of repressed Agent Alden finally getting some - of course, not with his wife.  Don't get me wrong, I like nothing about this guy - which is the way we're supposed to feel - but credit where credit is due for a hot scene.

Other fine scenes -  Margaret's kindness to her disfigured bodyguard,  Jimmy's boy showing him "Mommy's kissing friend" - this episode was chocked full of fine scenes, which is the case with every episode of this primo series.

Only two episodes left.   We know, in our reality, that Arnold Rothstein gets killed - but that's a few years later than where we are now on the boardwalk.  With Nucky gathering his forces, it will be fun to see where Rothstein winds up in two weeks of series time.


5-min podcast review of Boardwalk Empire

See also Boardwalk Emipre on HBO ... Boardwalk Empire 1.2: Lines and Centers Power


                 Special Discount Coupons for Angie's List, Avis, Budget Car, eHarmony, eMusic, Mozy, Zazzle







The Plot to Save Socrates





"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Friday, November 19, 2010

Fringe 3.7: Two Universes Still Nearing Collision

Some typically good alternate universe touches in tonight's Fringe 3.7 - my favorites were Broyles'  son in the alternate reality enjoying The Shadow (last heard by a mass audience at home in our America in the 1940s), and the "Peter Bishop Act" making kidnapping a Fringe Division crime over there.  And the central story moved, well, not quite far enough along.

We had a great final scene at the end of episode 3.6, with the Statue of Liberty turning from our oxidized green to the alt reality's burnished copper, and the Twin Towers gleaming in their background.  (The plane got the White House not the World Trade Center towers in their September 11.  Thanks to Bryan for pointing this out in the comments to this blog post.)  We also heard Walternate indicate that he was close to killing our Olivia, who has already come to realize who she is.

So tonight's episode might have been about Olivia trying escape Walternate's clutches - which it was, but through the long detour of kidnappings, including Broyles' son.  Olivia's help in nabbing the bad guys gets Broyles not to turn her in, when she reveals to him what he already knows - that she's from the other side (the revelation is accidental - she tells one of the kidnap victims that she's FBI, which ceased to exist a decade ago over there).   But I was looking forward to something more dramatic from alt-Broyles - maybe a direct confrontation with Walternate over not killing Olivia.  Well, maybe we'll see that the next episode.

Meanwhile, Fringe continues to do a good job dusting off golden age and earlier science fiction tropes and bringing them in the 21st century.  Last week, we had an advanced human tech-savvy society in pre-historic times (I happily explored a bit of this in my 1999 novel, The Silk Code), and tonight we saw old men staying younger by draining the energy from kids.

But the central continuing story of the two realities in collision is still the big draw, and I'm looking forward to seeing more.  One question which had been looming bigger and bigger - why doesn't Peter in our reality realize he's sleeping with alt-Olivia? - became moot:  Olivia's failed attempt to escape at least got word to Peter that she was trapped.


5-min podcast review of Fringe

See also Fringe 3.1: The Other Olivia ... Fringe 3.2: Bad Olivia and Peter ... Fringe 3.3: Our/Their Olivia on the Other Side ... Fringe 3.5: Back from Hiatus, Back from the Amber

See also reviews of Season 2: Top Notch Return of Fringe Second Season ... Fringe 2.2 and The Mole People ... Fringe 2.3 and the Human Body as Bomb ... Fringe 2.4 Unfolds and Takes Wing ... Fringe 2.5: Peter in Alternate Reality and Wi-Fi for the Mind ... A Different Stripe of Fringe in 2.6 ... The Kid Who Changed Minds in Fringe 2.7 ... Fringe 2.8: The Eternal Bald Observers ... Fringe 2.9: Walter's Journey ... Fringe 2.10: Walter's Brain, Harry Potter, and Flowers for Algernon ...  New Fringe on Monday Night: In Alternate Universe? ... Fringe 2.12: Classic Science Fiction Chiante ... Fringe 2.13: "I Can't Let Peter Die Again" ... Fringe 2.14: Walter's Health, Books, and Father ... Fringe 2.15: I'll Take 'Manhatan' ... Fringe 2.16: Peter's Story ... Fringe 2.17: Will Olivia Tell Peter? ... Fringe 2.18: Strangeness on a Train ... Fringe 2.19: Two Plus Infinity ... Fringe the Noir Musical ... Fringe 2.21: Bring on the Alternates ... Fringe 2.22:  Tin Soldiers and Nixon Coming ... Fringe Season 2 Finale: The Switch

See also reviews of Season One Fringe Begins ... Fringe 2 and 3: The Anthology Tightrope ... 4: The Eternal Bald Observer ... 7: A Bullet Can Scramble a Dead Brain's Transmission ... 8. Heroic Walter and Apple Through Steel ... 9. Razor-Tipped Butterflies of the Mind ... 10. Shattered Pieces Come Together Through Space and Times ... 11. A Traitor, a Crimimal, and a Lunatic ... 12, 13, 14: Fringe and Teleportation ... 15: Fringe is Back with Feral Child, Pheromones, and Bald Men ... 17. Fringe in New York, with Oliva as Her Suspect ... 18. Heroes and Villains across Fringe ... Stephen King, Arthur C. Clarke, and Star Trek in Penultimate Fringe ... Fringe Alternate Reality Finale: Science Fiction At Its Best





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The Plot to Save Socrates





"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Bones 6.7: Newman and "Death by Chocolate"

Newman from Seinfeld - Wayne Knight - put in a good appearance on Bones 6.7 tonight.   The character could have well been the irascible mailman, except he was a chocolate honcho, in an episode that could well have titled "Death by Chocolate," as "Newman" commented about the hot babe found murdered in a huge chocolate bar.

By "chocolate honcho" I of course mean head of a chocolate factory, and not a honcho made of chocolate.   This is also distinct from the "chocolatier" (for some reason, I really like this term), who is the master chocolate maker, and in this episode - well, I don't want to melt your surprise, i.e., give anything away.

But chocolate is very much the medium through which this murder is received, turning the flesh to mush, and leaving mostly just the bones, which of course is where Bones comes in.   She has a good line tonight - "chocolate and violence often intersect" - and proceeds to impart an anthropological gem.  But with Mr. Nigel-Murray on hand as the intern, the greatest number of arcane nuggets of course belongs to him.   Unlike all the other characters on the show, by the way, I like Nigel-Murray's "trivia" (Cam's words), and in fact I think his points are far more important than trivia.  (Cam even acknowledges that Milton Hersey being a Quaker - given the Quaker interest in chocolate as an inducement away from alcohol - was somewhat interesting.  Nigel-Murray makes both points.)

Cam otherwise has a storyline about her daughter choosing a college based on her boyfriend, but more significant for Bones and Booth is what happens when Hodgins assembles everyone to tell them that Angela's pregnant.   There's a funny scene in which Cam, Bones, Sweets, and Nigel-Murray unsuccessfully attempt to feign but surprise, but -

Why wasn't Booth there at the table?

He's gone home to have "sex with Hannah" as Bones puts it.  Hannah has just returned from overseas, but even so, Booth's decision not to join his friends at Angela and Hodgin's announcement has a lot of signifcance, me thinks.


5-min podcast review of Bones

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

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





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The Plot to Save Socrates



"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book
 
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