Friday, March 16, 2007

Veronica Mars

Last night, Kristin Veitch from E!Online posted that Veronica Mars had been canceled. This morning, she's backpedaling. Read about it here.

It's because of this kind of thing that I have a very hard time taking Kristin seriously. Except when she says David Boreanaz is hot, cause, dude, we all know that's true. Anyway, this is the same Kristin who assured us all in no uncertain terms that Angel would most certainly return for a sixth season on the WB. Okay, so maybe I'm still holding a grudge.

In any case, if you're a Veronica Mars fan, I'd keep my fingers crossed and hope that the network and Rob Thomas manage to pull something together and, most importantly, that if they come to a compromise it's still Veronica Mars. Fans may disagree, but I'd rather see a show come to a dignified end than be retooled by network suits into something that it was never meant to be. (And no, that's not a grudge talking. I liked season 5 of Angel.)

Thursday, March 15, 2007


A couple on an anniversary trip are involved in a serious accident when a man appears in the middle of the road. (Moral--don't goof around while you're driving. It never ends well.) Molly (guest star Tricia Helfer--Battlestar Galactica) regains consciousness to find herself alone in the car, her husband nowhere to be seen. Looking for him, and for help, she happens on an old house. Inside is the man she thought she hit on the road--but he's not exactly a man. She runs away and ends up back in the middle of the road in front of an Impala full of Winchesters.

The boys try to help out, but Molly refuses to leave without her husband. Her wrecked car, though, has disappeared. They persuade her to go with them so they can talk to the police. But the same spirit comes after them, refusing to allow them to leave the area even in the car. (Truthfully, I expected Dean to be a lot more pissed off when the ghost possessed his car.)

The brothers' theory is that the ghost of a local farmer, Jonah Greeley, haunts the road where he was killed one night a year to find someone to punish for his death. This year it's Molly, and he won't let her leave until he's through with her, or until sunrise, when the hauntings generally stop. They go to Greeley's house to look for the body so they can salt and burn it. In spite of their efforts to protect Molly, she is captured and tortured by Greeley. But in the end, all proves to not be what it seems.

One of the things I like about this show is the different tones it can take from week to week. This slower-paced episode was a nice shift after the intensity of "Born Under a Bad Sign" and the frenetic "Tall Tales." The sense of overall creepiness was well-maintained, and the twist at the end was not only killer but touching. It was also a great example of a "bottle" episode--those single- or limited-set episodes shows sometimes throw in toward the end of the season so they can spend a bit more on the season finales (or just because they've drained too much of the budget). I don't know if that was the case here, but either way they did a great job with the car, some woods, and a dilapidated house. And I won't listen to "House of the Rising Sun" the same way ever again...

The Animals--House of the Rising Sun:
The Animals - Greatest Hits Live! - House of the Rising Sun

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Lost—Par Avion

Back story: Claire is involved in a car accident that severely injures her mother. She's left on life support, with her expenses being paid by an anonymous benefactor. The mysterious benefactor turns out to be none other than the elder Dr. Shephard. And he tells Claire he's her father. Wtf? Where did that come from? Wait a minute--I read about that in TV Guide or somewhere. Never mind. So Claire and Jack are half-siblings. Interesting. Claire doesn't appreciate Dr. Shephard's attempts to decide how her mother's condition should be dealt with. And he never tells her his name, so that would explain why she hasn't made the connection with Jack. Later, Claire visits her mother, who's still in a vegetative state in the hospital. Claire is now pregnant, so some time has passed. She breaks down at her mother's bedside, apologizing for everything she said to her mother right before the car accident.

Front story: Claire awakens from a dream to find Charlie and a fruit plate. Nobody makes me fruit plates. What's up with that? Oh, sorry, it's an aperitif not a fruit plate. Charlie has decided to quit being depressed. While they're heading out for a picnic, Desmond arrives and tells Charlie he might want to go hunting. Claire suddenly runs off, saying she knows how to get them off the island. This epiphany appears to have been precipitated by a flock of birds flying overhead. She thinks if they catch a bird that's been tagged, somebody will track them to the island and come to rescue them. Desmond scares away the birds, ostensibly by accident, but Claire things he did it on purpose. She confronts Charlie, thinking he had something to do with it. I'm not sure why. Maybe she's hormonal. Seeing Charlie and Desmond conversing, she follows Desmond. Desmond finds a bird and rescues it. Claire confronts him.Of course Desmond is trying again to keep Charlie from dying, and he tells Claire about it. Claire brings the bird, which is, indeed, tagged, back to Charlie. They attach a note to the bird and set it loose.

Jungle story: Sayid, Kate and Lock continue to explore with Mikhail and Rousseau, following the map. Kate interrogates Rousseau about her daughter, and Mikhail about his past. Mikhail tells Kate she's not on the list. Wait...does that mean Mohinder's going to show up looking for the people who are on the list? Mikhail seems to be trying to disconcert the others by revealing what he knows about them, which is rather a lot. Rousseau find a row of strange pylons. Mikhail says it was a security perimeter. John throws him through it and he dies a grisly, bloody, mouth-foamy death. Sayid confronts Locke about his motives and how much he knows, but doesn't get very far. Locke is being all closed-mouthed mysterious guy. They cut down a tree and use it to go over the top of one of the pylons. They find their way to what looks very much like a suburban neighborhood, where they see Jack playing backyard football.

I'm confused again, but that's pretty normal after an episode of this show. I thought the "book club" neighborhood was on a different island than the stowaways' island. Although that would put it on a third island, I guess, since the Others' island is definitely different from the stowaways' island. Locke's behavior in this episode--actually in several recent episodes--seems to be drifting more and more out of character from what we learned about him in earlier seasons. I find this bothersome. The thing about Claire's father seemed really out of left field. I have no idea where they're going with that and I have to wonder if they do, either. Anyway, it'll be interesting to see how that plays out, and if the bird manages to accomplish anything. Birds, after all, are notoriously unreliable.

Bones—The Bodies in the Book

Yay!! Bones is back. It's been off the air a whole month because of American Idol. Have I mentioned I deeply dislike American Idol?


We open with Brennan having a lot of fun with Sully, then getting a call from her publicist. She needs to do interviews and signings for her new book. But somebody else has a publicity plan--he's reenacting the murders she wrote about. The killer is shooting his victims, then wrapping them up in red tape and feeding them to animals--crabs, then rats, then fire ants. There seems to be no connection between the victims, and each case seems to have a different major suspect. The only thing tying them together, apparently, is Brennan's book.

On the romance side of the story, while things look peachy between Hodgins and Angela, Brennan and Sully have hit some bumpy terrain. Sully seems to be getting pretty serious. Brennan is concerned about this--she's seeing their relationship as a fling, and is disconcerted by the idea of anything more than that. Booth counsels them both, seeming to help them move toward each other. Booth is by turns smug, sweet, and charming, as David Boreanaz pulls off the shifting moods with aplomb.

The case proves convoluted enough to be entertaining, but not too convoluted to make sense. I liked the slightly-different-than-usual resolution. The character interplay in this episode is superb--even more fun than usual, if that's possible. The bodies, however, were particularly gross. I'm glad I wasn't eating dinner. All in all, a great return from hiatus...again.

Some notes:
Cam mentions the name of Tempe's fictional heroine--it's Kathy Reichs. Although they've talked about this since the show premiered, this is the first time it's been said on-air. Kathy Reichs is, of course, the author of the books featuring Temperance Brennan. She appeared briefly in "Judas on a Pole."

Featured songs:
Fault Line--Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Howl - Fault Line

Jesse Harris and the Ferdinandos--The Secret Sun
Jesse Harris & The Ferdinandos - The Secret Sun - The Secret Sun

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Blood Ties—Blood Price

Apparently House wasn't on tonight, so that made tonight's review a no-brainer.

Vicki Nelson, ex-cop turned PI, witnesses a freaky murder on the streets and finds herself drawn into an underground world of demons and vampires, one of whom, Fitzroy, is fairly hot, and helps her out with her investigation. He also draws graphic novels. He's seen the murdering demon, Astaroth, before, in London in the 1800's, when it was drawn by members of the Hellfire Club. This time it's being drawn by Norman, a geek-gamer who's using dark magic to try to get a hot chick, Coreen, for himself. If the ritual isn't stopped, all hell will break loose--literally.

Vicky is a strong and well-drawn character, not to mention a badass. She quit the police force because of her deteriorating vision--she has retinitis pigmentosa--and I have to wonder where that might lead. It's a bit ironic that she's losing her night vision under the circumstances. All the main characters were strongly written, but some of the guest stars' dialogue was torturously cheesy. The interplay between Vicki and Mike, her ex-boyfriend, and between Vicki and Fitzroy (who, by the way, is an illegitimate son of Henry VIII), is quite good. The villains in this installment, however, were more stereotypical and annoying than truly menacing. Seriously, didn't the whole Dungeons and Dragons (or in this case Everquest) leads to demon worship storyline go out of vogue with legwarmers and big hair? In any case, the show overall was very enjoyable. I think I'll be tuning in to this one on a regular basis.

Casting Note: Gina Holden, who plays Coreen Fennel, also played Haley Collins in Wendigo, from Supernatural season 1. It looks like she's going to be a series regular.

Blood Ties is available at Blood Ties - Blood Ties, Season 1 for download.

And don't forget to check out the books by Tanya Huff.

Coming This Week

Yesterday's lack of post was brought to you by:

1. Daylight Savings Time (Ben Franklin, you are a doofus)
2. Possible incursion of germs into my system (still not sure what's up there)
3. Heroes is on hiatus (lousy excuse, I admit)

Tonight I expect posting to resume on its regular schedule. However, I'm thinking of skipping House, since I seem to have less and less to say about it, and instead writing about Blood Ties, since I haven't had a chance to yet.

If anybody wants to weigh in on that, feel free. :-)

As for the rest of the week--yay! Bones is back! Supernatural is back! My shows return!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Dresden Files—Walls

A woman, Raychelle, comes to Harry's office and is run down by a car right in front of him. Investigating in Raychelle's apartment, he's attacked. His attacker disappears right into a broom closet. Hm. Wonder if he has that key from The Lost Room.

Harry finds a stolen bracelet at Raychelle's place and discovers a pattern of thefts across the area. He calls in Morgan, who isn't happy to be dragged into what he sees as a minor situation. The thefts are masterminded by Raychelle's boyfriend and a couple of sorority kids who have happened into some magic that allows them to move through walls. One of them dies trying to get into a bank vault--half of him inside and half of him outside. That used to happen to me all the time back in the day when I played Avatar. The autopsy shows he's been decomposing on the inside. The kids have been using a Glory Hand. It's not just helping them steal things, but it's possessing and slowly killing them, as well, as the spirit that gives it its power drains them to increase its own strength. Harry pursues, determined to save at least one of them. His efforts lead to a showdown with the hand's original possessor.

This episode was darker and creepier than previous episodes. I actually liked that change of pace. Although we've seen that using bad magic has serious consequences, this episode really brought that point home, and I liked that they were willing to wander into more intense, gorier territory. Harry also got to use a bit more and flashier spells, which is always fun, although the magical bugs were kinda freaky. Overall, I found this to be a solid installment, and another indication of the show's gradual improvement.