A Preparation Guide to the Wayward Sisters Series

Supernatural is attempting another spin-off. Its first attempt, Supernatural: Bloodlines failed. It was a muddled mess that didn’t follow the rules of the universe. It wasn’t particularly well-written, it wasn’t intriguing, and it wasn’t, and this bit’s important, anything anyone asked for. I bring up Bloodlines, because I believe (and hope so hard) that Wayward Sisters will be a very different case. Rather than trying to introduce us to characters we’ve never met, this will do the usual spin-off thing and revolve around characters we’ve already grown to know and like. And it’s a show fans have asked for. Some details may have been altered, but the basic premise seems to have remained. It goes something like this:

Sheriff Jody Mills, with help from Sheriff Donna Hanscum, trains her adopted daughters, Alex and Claire, and other troubled young girls and women, like Patience Turner and Kaia Nieves, to hunt the supernatural.

Like Bloodlines it will be a backdoor pilot,  doubling as the tenth episode of Supernatural‘s upcoming 13th season. As I understand it, it will be the first episode to air when the show returns from its mid-season break.

For anyone who’s curious about this female-led Supernatural spin-off, but is unfamiliar with the show (or just wants a little refresher), here are all the pertinent episodes: the must watch’s, the character arcs, and the good-to-know’s. A fair few of them crossover, so I did look into each character’s perspective. There’s also a tiny bit of information on the newcomers, but they haven’t dropped a ton of information about them yet.

The numbering refers to how important it is to watch the episode. I enjoy any Jody or Donna episode, and it would probably be good to watch all of these, but I get that it’s a lot, so the numbers specifically refer to how informative they are. It doesn’t mean to indicate quality.

Let’s start with protagonist Jody Mills:

Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid (05×15)

Jody’s first episode. It gives a ton of backstory and goes a long way to explain her character’s motivation. She’s the sheriff of the town of Sioux Falls and had a happy family that was ripped away from her by supernatural forces.

https://i1.wp.com/cdn.playbuzz.com/cdn/ff63e09f-dd02-457a-b4cb-494b2200a05f/131cc195-b8ed-4abc-a29c-2d0b462ab73d.jpg

Bobby Singer, who acts as a father figure to Supernatural‘s two leads, Sam and Dean Winchester, has had run-in’s with her before. She meets the Winchester brothers and learns the truth about things that go bump in the night. She discovers the town she protects is being taken over by zombies.

By the end of the episode she’s kicking those things in the ass and has become an ally to Bobby, Sam, and Dean.

  • 10/10

Weekend at Bobby’s (06×04)

We see just how far Jody is willing to go to help Bobby hide his paranormal hunting from the authorities (I ship it). She catches him with a dead body, but immediately assumes that it’s an evil creature.

She also reluctantly helps Bobby’s hunting partner, Rufus, escape from jail.

  • 4/10

Hello, Cruel World (07×02)

Jody is recovering from an appendectomy in a hospital, and realizes there’s something not right with her doctor (turns out he’s a Leviathan). She starts to do some very hunter-esque research of her own. When he discovers that she knows the truth about him, he tries to knock her out, but when he leaves her unattended, she manages to call Bobby, who sneaks her out of the hospital.

  • 4/10

Slash Fiction (07×06)

Jody goes to Bobby’s house to thank him for saving her. She gets him to agree to let her cook him a meal as a thank you.

In the basement, Bobby has a Leviathan tied to a chair, but can’t find any way to kill it. Then some sort of liquid drips from above them and begins burning the Leviathan. Bobby runs upstairs. to find Jody  cleaning something off the floor. The cleaning solution seeped through to the basement below. Bobby is so excited that he kisses Jody, and I continue to ship them so fucking hard.

He gives her the severed head of the Leviathan after he later cuts it off and asks her to throw it into the river, which presumably she does.

  • 5/10

Time After Time (07×12)

http://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/supernatural-tv-series/images/1/1a/7x12_SheriffJodyMills%2BSamReturnDean%2BChronos.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20140914173323This is two episodes after Bobby’s death, and Jody calls Sam, asking if she can help him with anything. Sam’s just lost Dean, who’s trapped in the past, so he asks if she can help him look through some old files to try and find where Dean is and bring him back.

Together they find a summoning ritual to bring Dean back and figure out exactly where Dean will be and at what time, and manage to return him to the present.

  • 8/10

Sacrifice (08×23)

Jody briefly appears in a scene where she’s on a blind date with Crowley. He tries to kill her remotely through a hex bag, and uses her potential death to get something from the brothers. They give in to save her.

  • 1/10

Rock and a Hard Place (09×08)

Jody goes to the Winchesters after several people go missing. She combines her sheriff and hunting skills to discover what the monster is (a goddess). After it captures Dean, Jody and Sam go hunting it.

Sam is incapacitated and Jody get the brunt of a beating, but continues to struggle with the goddess, who stabs her in the shoulder (and my heart fucking stopped, because I thought she was stabbed a little lower). The goddess then turns her attention to Sam, at which point Jody manages to stab and kill her from behind. Like a rock star.

  • 7/10

Annie Alex Alexis Ann (09×19)

Here we go! This is really where Wayward Sisters started to take shape. Jody kills a vampire and rescues a young girl, Annie, who the vampire was holding captive. And Annie’s furious.

https://i2.wp.com/www.supernaturalwiki.com/images/b/b3/JodyKillsVamp.gif

Jody discovers the vampires are using Annie as bait, but Annie views the vamps as family and acts cold toward Jody. But when the vamps capture Jody and tell Annie to feed from her, so Annie will become a vampire herself, she’s hesitant and instead incapacitates her “mother” vampire.

Sam and Dean take out the other vamps, and Jody decapitates the mother. They cure Annie of her partial transformation.

Annie’s real name is actually Alex, and she goes back to her original moniker. Because Alex and Jody have both lost their families, Jody adopts Alex.

  • 10/10

Hibbing 911 (10×08)

And THEN Jody met Donna Hanscum. Donna had only been in one episode previously, but was so unbelievably lovable, that she soon became a fan favorite. And she’s a sheriff and Jody’s a sheriff, so it only made sense to send them off to a sheriff convention where they meet and become best friends.

Jody isn’t immediately won over by the bubbly Donna, but by the end she can’t help but be impressed by her.

This episode features them fighting vampires (again), which takes Donna a while to get her head around. Jody’s been dealing with the supernatural for sometime now, but Donna’s still new to it all.

Though Jody calls Sam and Dean for backup, Donna’s the one that saves Jody from the main vamp. Jody offers to teach Donna how to hunt the supernatural. Considering that it’s been announced that Donna will also be a regular on the show, this turns out to be an important exchange.

  • 10/10

Don’t You Forget About Me (11×12)

https://i0.wp.com/www.mymbuzz.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2016/07/supernatural_11.12_dont_you_forget_about_me_1.pngAt this point, Claire has joined Jody and Alex’s household (we’ll get into that in Claire’s section), but Claire’s not happy about it and wants to strike out on her own and hunt. Jody invites the Winchesters over, hoping they’ll talk some sense into her.

Meanwhile, there’s monster trouble at Alex and Claire’s school. There’s (ANOTHER) vampire on the loose.  Jody gets badly injured and Claire is abducted. Turns out this vamp blames Alex for the death of another vampire and is out for revenge. He bites Claire with the intention of turning her, before Sam and Dean arrive to stop him. Claire carries out the final kill herself and is spared of a vampire transformation.

The next morning things are a little gentler in the household, and Claire realizes that letting Jody teach her a little more about hunting may not be the worst thing in the world.

  • 10/10

Celebrating the Life of Asa Fox (12×06)

Sam and Dean casually stop by Jody’s after a hunt. While there, Jody gets news of a friend’s death, Asa Fox, a legendary hunter. The brothers offer to drive her to where the hunters are gathering to pay their respects.

Sam and Dean’s recently resurrected mother shows up, and Jody mildly fangirls over her.

Later, they discover someone is being possessed by a demon. It jumps between several hunters before it finally possess Jody. Mary tries to stab her, but the demon is too strong, turning the room of hunters into chaos, before, together, they manage to exorcise the demon.

  • 3/10

Who We Are (12×22)

https://i0.wp.com/www.spoilersguide.com/media/images/9f/f2/0017fcef1a7d995d5e3d4e0cce8a.jpegMary’s been brainwashed by an organization known as the Men of Letters and she’s killing hunters. Unable to get ahold of Jody, Sam And Dean hurry to warn her in person.

Jody helps Sam, and the other hunters they gather, to storm the Men of Letters’ headquarters. Jody shoots and kills the woman at the head of the organization.

  • 3/10

That’s it for Jody so far.

************************************************************************************

Moving on to Donna Hanscum:

The Purge (09×13)

While investigating a strange death, Sam and Dean first meet Sheriff Donna Hanscum.

Following the trail of the monster, they meet Donna again. This time she’s on vacation at a spa. She falls asleep during a “cupping” session thing (where they place warm cups on her back). While she’s asleep, a monster sucks fat out of her. She notices that she’s lost weight and mentions it to the Winchesters, who find this is a vital clue to figuring out who the monsters and what they’re doing (I still can’t hear the phrase “fish taco” without giggling).

  • 10/10

Hibbing 911 (10×08)

https://i2.wp.com/sweatpantsandcoffee.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/21-Supernatural-SPN-Season-Ten-Episode-Eight-S10E8-Hibbing-911-Sheriff-Jody-Mills-Kim-Rhodes-Donna-Hanscum-Briana-Buckmaster.jpgThis episode is almost more about Donna than it is about Jody (though it does feel more like it’s from the latter’s perspective).

Like I said before, Donna only just learns about the supernatural in this episode, and Jody offering to teach her seems to align with what the spin-off is supposedly about. And Donna starts chopping off vamp heads as soon as she finds out what they are. So that’s pretty cool.

  • 10/10

Plush (11×07)

Donna’s investigating a guy in a rabbit head (that doesn’t come off) who’s been killing people. She calls Sam and Dean, worried it may be some sort of spook.

When the wearer is killed and the head comes off, Donna blames herself for not being able to help the young man inside. But the killings continue, perpetrated by other strange figures. They eventually discover a vengeful spirit is behind the attacks. Donna helps burn the costumes the spirit was tethered to, so he’ll be forced to pass on.

There’s also a pseudo-love interest for her in this episode that the writers may or may not pursue. His name is Doug (not to be confused with her ex-husband of the same name).

  • 4/10

And those are the only episode Donna has been in. Yet she’s had a huge impact on the show and its fans.

************************************************************************************

Now for the girls. First up Alex Jones. All of her episodes feature Jody, but I’ll shift perspective:

Alex Annie Alexis Ann (09×19)

I think a large part of the reason Wayward Sisters has gotten greenlit as far as it has, is up to this character in this episode.

Sullen teenager is one thing, but Alex manages to be layered both in writing and performance. She suffers a sort of Stockholm Syndrome for much of the episode and is eventually won over by Jody. While her turn around may seem  a little quick, I think Jody has a great deal of humanity about her, something that Alex would have been missing with her vampire family.

  • 10/10

Don’t You Forget about Me (11×12)

https://i0.wp.com/www.thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/images/Elle/Season_11/11.12/DYFAM16.jpg

This episode does a lot to establish Alex and Claire’s sister-like relationship, and almost works as a pilot in itself. It’s the promise of the premise. We see their family life, their school life, and how that will have to be balanced with the monsters they encounter.

Alex’s boyfriend does turn out to be evil and working with a vampire, but other than that she’s doing pretty well. Alex seems like the character who most wishes this family unit could be normal. She likes living with Jody, but does she really want to be a monster hunter? It’s a question the series may explore.

  • 10/10

Who We Are (12×22)

Alex isn’t in this episode a whole ton, but we get to see that she supports her surrogate mother going out and saving the world and has every confidence that she’ll come back (while, personally, I had a terrible dread they were gonna kill off Jody. So glad that wasn’t the case). Alex even seems a little proud of Jody.

  • 3/10

************************************************************************************

Claire Novak will also be a regular:

The Rapture (04×20)

This episode happens when Claire is a little girl and played by a different actor. It shows the repercussions that the angel Castiel’s possession has on Jimmy, his vessel, and Jimmy’s family.

For the most part Claire is just a bewildered little girl, trying to understand what’s happening with her father and between her parents. When Claire is kidnapped at the end, a furious Jimmy asks where Castiel has gone, and why he won’t protect the family he’s tearing apart.

Jimmy gets shot, trying to rescue his wive and daughter, and Castiel possesses Claire, so he can rescue the family. Castiel then possesses Jimmy again  and leaves the Novak family, who are never to be heard from again. Until:

  • 8/10

The Things We Left Behind (10×09)

Well, Claire hasn’t exactly turned into a well adjusted teenager (understandable), and she’s being kept in a holding cell. She’s very angry and aggressive and has no trouble letting Castiel know just how much damage he’s done to her and her mother (who left, forcing Claire to live in foster homes). And Jimmy is proper dead dead at this point, Castiel is just using his body as a vessel.

http://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/supernatural/images/f/fe/Spn_the_things_we_left_behind.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20150507034514Cas(s) tries to get custody of Claire, but it doesn’t go over well. So he breaks her out. Castiel thinks they should stick together, but Claire, manages to make a getaway.

Castiel finds Claire just as she’s about to rob a convenience store at gunpoint. She then threatens to kill Sam and Dean (who are with Castiel at this point). After refusing to accept Castiel’s apologies, she runs off again.

Claire’s been working with a Fagin-like character, Randy, who’s gotten himself into some financial trouble. She pulls a gun on his attackers, but is quickly disarmed. He trades them Claire instead. She fights off a man who moves in to assault her.

Castiel and the Winchesters show up and Cas(s) finds Claire almost immediately. He takes her out to the Impala (the Winchesters’ car) and comforts her. Much like a father.

Dean kills Randy.

  • 10/10

The Hunter Games (10×10)

Castiel comes to see Claire who’s staying in a motel. He explains he wants to help her have a normal life, but she thinks that impossible. They argue about Dean, whether or not he’s a killer (she still thinks Randy wanted to protect her), and she storms away.

Cas(s) asks Dean to talk to Claire, so Dean leaves her a message. When she hears it, Claire tries to come up with a “permanent” way to deal with Dean. She calls him to set up a meeting. Two of Claire’s friends attack Dean when he shows up, but Claire has a change of heart and warns him they’re there. He’s able to easily fight them off and looks like he may attack them. Claire screams for him not to, and Dean contains himself long enough to storm off.

Cas(s) finds Claire later. She admits she wants to do better and keep in contact with Castiel. But for now it’s good-bye.

  • 6/10

Angel Heart (10×20)

Sam, Dean, and Castiel find Claire staying at another motel. Cas(s) is still trying to make amends, giving her gifts he thinks a child would like.

The trio bring Claire with them as they investigate a strange murder. Sam and Cas(s) end up finding Claire’s mother, badly injured, while Dean and Claire are away playing miniature golf. Claire seems to have a better understanding of her father’s sacrifice and that Cas(s) is trying to do his best. Then Dean realizes what they must be hunting.

https://i1.wp.com/www.tvovermind.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Supernatural-10.20.jpgThey return to find Cas(s) with Claire’s mother. Dean and Cas(s) go off to rescue Sam, who’s been captured, and Claire embraces her mom. The creature who captured the mother appears, and Claire tries to shoot him, to no avail. He moves to stab Claire, but her mother jumps between them, getting stabbed herself.

Cas(s) appears to destroy the creature, but Claire’s mother dies, saying good-bye to her daughter. At which point the boys finally think: JODY. Send her to Jody. Which they do.

  • 5/10

Don’t You Forget About Me (11×12)

Claire’s not doing as well at school as Alex. She’s had some time to settle in with her and Jody, but Claire finds it harder to adjust. She’s not as popular, not as content. She tortures Alex as best she can, but the trouble is that Alex is mostly happy and Claire isn’t. And where Alex seems to lean away from hunting, it’s all Claire wants to do.

Jody and Claire get attacked by the vamp, and Claire is taken. This is that episode where Claire is bitten and kills the lead vamp, but by the end, it seems she’s coming around. She still wants to hunt, but she wants to learn from Jody.

  • 10/10

Ladies Drink Free (12×16)

Claire’s been tracking a werewolf and teams up with the Winchesters, who are hunting it. But she ends up arguing with them both after they find out Jody thinks she’s away looking at colleges.

She storms out, but is attacked, and when Sam finds her, she’s been bitten by the werewolf. With the werewolf’s blood, they may be able to cure her, so the brothers leave to find it, and Claire is watched by Mick, who’s working with Sam and Dean.

While the brothers are gone, Claire starts to transform. The werewolf returns and takes Claire, Mick unable to stop him. Sam, Dean, and Mick manage to find her, take the werewolf’s blood, and cure Claire.

She goes off on her own again, but calls Jody, tells her where she is, what she’s doing, and that she loves her and Alex.

  • 5/10

************************************************************************************

A new character, Patience Turner (played by Clark Backo), will also be introduced. While we haven’t seen her, back in season 1, we met her grandmother, Missouri Moseley, who I think will also be appearing in season 13. I believe the introduction of Patience and the reintroduction of Missouri will occur before the backdoor pilot. Missouri is a psychic and apparently Patience gets pulled into the Wayward fold when she discovers that she too is psychic.

Missouri’s appearance:

Home (01×09)

https://www.hypable.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/SPN_1025.jpgSam and Dean learn that their father, John, met with Missouri, because she’s a psychic. They go to see her, and she immediately knows who they are. Missouri goes with the boys to a house being haunted by poltergeists and helps them rid the house of the spirits. Unfortunately, after she leaves, more spirits appear, and Sam and Dean return to defeat them.

Back at Missouri’s house, we discover that John is still meeting with her. She urges him to see his son’s, but he’s not ready yet.

I don’t know how important this will turn out to be, so…I’ll put it right in the middle:

  • 5/10

************************************************************************************

Another new character, Kaia Nieves (played by Yadira Guevara-Prip) is going to recur in Supernatural‘s season 13. She will join the Wayward Sisters cast. She has the ability to travel between worlds in dreams (which could turn out to be really useful, considering recent events).

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The Good Place (02×01) Running Commentary

Spoilers, guys. Spoilers. Go watch the first season. GO WATCH. And then start the second season and read this rubbish.

-It’s gonna be impossible to top the end of season 1. But I can’t wait!

-Are we setting up Marc Evan Jackson (the Shawn guy) to be the main baddie, BECAUSE I’D LOVE THAT.

-Ohmigod, as an ex-actor, the actors asking question is ridiculous and on point.

-Elbows ARE stupid. You’re right, Michael. Though it would be worse NOT to have them, I guess.

-I missed all these characters so much. I love them. Where are they, by the way? Other than Eleanor.

-Oh! There’s Jianyu! No! Come back!

-Okay Eleanor’s new fake soulmate is amusing. And nice to look at, but he’s not my Chidi. Where is he? WHERE IS HE.

-CH. DI. CHIDICHIDICHIDICHIDICHIDICHIDICHIDICHIDICHIDI

-Ahaha! Philosophers are all in hell!

-Knowing what’s actually happening makes this show totally different.

-So, the four from the first season are the ONLY ones that are in their afterlife, right? Like, we’re sure about that?

-I’m giggling like an idiot at the Eleanor/Chidi interaction.

-And Tahani is where?

-Marc Evan Jackson’s even in the fucking commercials!

-Tahani! Yay!

-Okay, you have to understand. I’m also really tall, so I’m relating HARD to Tahani being too tall for her house.

-I’m calling plumbers “toiletsweeps” from now on.

-C’mon, these people are too decent to be tortured daily…maybe not.

-I really love the intersecting stories.

-Why did we have to wait so long for drunk Tahani?

-God, Jianyu’s twin soulmate would drive me nuts too.

-“My many many cargo pant’s pockets” is a brilliant line in its simplicity.

-“What the fork is happening?” They’re miserable, but Michael seems concerned. Are they trying to pull another fast one on us?

-Did the core four (Oh, I’m for sure calling them that now: the Core Four) already form a plan?

-Seriously, who are all the actors working in the afterlife?

-Eleanor is always into Chidi. Let’s just deal with that. I’m definitely not complaining.

-Oh, no. They haven’t formulated a plan YET. They’re formulating one NOW.

-Eleanor’s new fake soulmate IS as dumb as he looks.

-We gonna fast track the Janet/Jianyu relationship? I’d be okay with that.

-Oh, we’re fast tracking ALL this. Jianyu’s talking already. Oh, they already figured it out. Was the first time they figured it out really the first run-through even? This show is making me question everything, and I’m loving it.

-Damn. They basically just did the entire first season in one hour long episode.

-You DIDN’T tell Shawn, did you?

-Oh, here we go.

-Why is “butthole spiders” making me laugh? It’s sophomoric, and I’m alone in my house, sniggering like a moron.

-Oh, wait. I’m watching the news now. That was the end?! No, I want more!

One last moment of appreciation for Tahini’s toiletsweep look.

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The Audrey Situation (on Twin Peaks: The Return)

This post contains massive spoilers for Twin Peaks: The Return. Obvs.

There are a lot of different things you could talk about in regards to the Twin Peaks finale. There’s a lot of dissection and discussion flying around right now. There were many things about the show that were thrilling and exciting and many things that left fans disappointed and frustrated. The thing that frustrated me most (aside from the fact that we never got to see Cooper in the Double R Diner with a slice of cherry pie and a damn fine cup of coffee) was the Audrey situation.

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/d8/ca/75/d8ca75f4f2c02644d2405ca265e0fc28--twin-peaks-retro-fashion.jpgI was thrilled to hear that Audrey would be in the new season. She’s far and away my favorite character in the original series, but the ending of season 2 leaves her fate a little…uncertain. For all we knew she was blown up along with the bank. But it seems she survived. Or did she?

Audrey didn’t show up for a long time. In a season of 18 episodes, she first appears in episode 12. And she’s only in three episodes after that. Also, the Audrey we were seeing was very different than the Audrey we expected.

There were dozens of theories about how she may have already been referred to, just not by name. When she has her first scene, a seemingly endless circular conversation with a creep, who claims to be her husband, many fans that had been anxiously awaiting her return, found themselves falling asleep. And her next two appearances weren’t much different.

https://pixel.nymag.com/imgs/daily/vulture/2017/08/28/28-sherilyn-fenn-2.w710.h473.2x.jpgThen her 4th episode aired. Audrey got out of the house she was in for the all the past scenes and arrived at the Roadhouse. At least we’re going somewhere. And then Audrey’s theme started to play, the crowd cleared the floor, and Audrey danced. Like she used to do. I was so happy, I could have cried.

All of a sudden, the scene did a smash cut to what seemed to be Audrey starting awake. She seemed to be in bed and looking in a mirror. And she’s freaking out. That’s intercut with the scene of her dancing, and she seems to fall back into what, at this point it seems safe to say, is a dream.

https://ozba.files.wordpress.com/2017/08/disakwhwaaa1-y7.jpg?w=424&h=239This went with a popular theory I’d heard about: that Audrey was in a coma. Now how long this coma been going on, it’s hard to say. She has a son, but she could have become pregnant with John Justice Wheeler’s kid, and he could have been born while she was in the coma.

Of course, she also could have been raped by the evil alternate Cooper during her coma, which would explain why her kid was SO awful.

And apparently we don’t even know what year it is, so any wiggle room needed for age and time is allowed. Or maybe none of that’s the case. Maybe she survived the explosion and ended up in a coma for a totally different reason. We don’t know.

I was actually relieved to see her “waking up.” I was totally willing to go with Audrey-in-a-coma theory. Especially if it null-and-voided all those sleepy scenes we’d seen so far. I was excited to see her interact with the other characters, for her to see Cooper again.

When she was absent from the solid episode, Part 17, I thought “okay, that’s fine. They’re saving her for the finale. She’s a fan favorite after all.” Part 18, the finale, aired and ended and not a whisper of Audrey.

https://static.independent.co.uk/s3fs-public/styles/article_small/public/thumbnails/image/2017/08/07/16/twin-peaks.jpgSo there were things that I liked about the finale and things I didn’t like about the finale. And if this were part of a larger arc, and we were going to revisit the Audrey situation, then this would all be fine. But HBO David Lynch, and Mark Frost have all said that they don’t have any plans for a 4th season, in which case, WHAT IN THE ACTUAL HELL?!

Was she dead, in a medical hospital, in a mental hospital, in a government observation room, heaven, hell, a previously unseen part of the black lodge, a previously unseen part of the white lodge?

Or maybe that’s entirely the point. As much love as we all have for Audrey, she’s one of those characters that never has a happy ending. Every iteration of every story she’s given ends in trauma. So even if someway somehow there was more Twin Peaks, it’s possible Audrey would have another part to her story and would still end up in a purgatorial state. Maybe that’s all we deserve after all our complaining. It just seems that Audrey deserves better. But what did we expect really?

Forget it, Jake. It’s Twin Peaks.

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The Tick Running Commentary

Spoilers. Duh.

Picking up from episode 2. I already wrote a whole post about episode 1 from when it came out last year.

-I get the feeling the Tick doesn’t have an alter ego. He’s so into being a superhero. He’d be miserable as a normal guy.

-“At least organized crime is organized.”

-Give into the “us,” Arthur!

– I believe in the Tick. Also, #IBelieveInTheTick

-Do his antennae store his emotions?

-Arthur really could use some regular clothes. Like, of course people can find him dressed like that.

-“We’ve got a superhero.” Yeeeees!

-If I called out all the dialogue I liked, this would just be a transcript.

-Seriously, I’m all about all this dialogue. I’ve been giggling pretty consistently throughout.

-Arthur sneaking around his own apartment was me tonight when I thought I saw roach in the bathroom sink. It was only a cricket.

-Oh my God, Miss Lint getting all girly asking about Overkill. This is too good.

-Does…does Overkill want to kill Arthur? I feel like he could have done that a few times by now. If not…maybe don’t point a gun at him?

-I want a spinoff about Dot’s roller derby team.

-Ghosh opening the register as soon as the thugs walk in…perfect.

-That sarcophagus fridge is ridiculous. I also kind of want one.

-Miss Lint is way too cool for these losers.

-I’m not 100% sure what Arthur job is, but it looks like the worst. And I think there’s math involved. Ew.

-Peter Serafinowicz trying to say superhero in an American accent is still my favorite part of this show.

-Good grief, I just said the same line as the Tick as he said. A little more worrying than when that happened with Jessica Jones.

-I’m legit concerned about the Tick remembering who he really is. And me finding out.

-The Tick drinks coffee straight out of the coffee pot, and now I’m wondering why I don’t do that.

-It’s true. Walter’s obsession with feet is weird.

-I’m concerned by HOW much I like Miss Lint. I know she’s the baddie, but she’s awesome.

-Now I want cheese. But I already brushed my teeth.

-Can Dot become a superhero too? She needs to escape normal even more than Arthur.

-Jesus! Throwing Stars stuck in the flesh.

-Miss Lint and Arthur trying to make the suit work is WAY too relatable.

-I’m laughing so hard!

-So wait, Miss Lint’s superpower is attracting lint?

-He’s flying! Arthur’s flying!

-By the way, I love the opening credits.

-Oh, the book was ACTUALLY written by  a dog.

-Damn straight Dot’s coming with you.

-Look, I think Miss Lint’s my favorite, and we’re all just gonna have to be okay with that.

-Chum, sport, Arthur doesn’t have any good nicknames.

-Oh, good. Dot’s on board.

-I wish I was into everything as much as the Tick is.

-Oh, shit. It’s the Terror.

-Man, I wish I could adjust the flavor and temperature of my coffee with laser eyes. That’s the only thing I’d use it for, but that’s enough for me to really want them.

-There are A LOT of face scars in this show.

-Holy shit, did they just kill the-oh, no they just poisoned the ex-husband. It was just really sudden.

-Killin’ the Bees is gonna be my new band name.

-Tick, Tick, he’s getting away!

-No! Tick!

-Damn. What did they fire at him? And why wasn’t it effective. Is it his suit?

-He’s figured it out. Arthur figured out the suit.

-Aliens?! Yay!

-Oh, no.

-Cliffhanger indeed!

-Okay, I’m gonna need more. That wasn’t the full season, right? When do we get the rest of it?

-Answer me internet!

-Not til 2018?!

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The Defenders (Season 1) Running Commentary

So many spoilers.

-Ugh, we’re starting with That One No One Cares About? Or, no. What’s his name? White Privilege? No, no, that’s his superpower. Ah, I’ve just been informed his name is actually Iron Fist (I’ve just been calling him, “shut up, Danny”).

-Sig. Our. Ney. Weav. Er. ❤ ❤ ❤

-It’s interesting. Each show and corresponding character has a distinct style/color palette. Seeing characters weave between the styling of their own show and the others is…interesting.

-Careful, Malcolm. Your Australian is showing.

-I, in real life, said the exact line Jessica Jones said in the show as she was saying it. I’m very proud of myself.

-Luke tossing Danny around the alley is giving me life.

-A quarter of this show is Colleen doing the job Danny should be doing, while he occasionally punches something for her. Let’s be clear, she’s doing the job of Iron Fist.

-One of the cool things about this show is getting to see all the supporting characters again: Foggy, Trish, Malcom, Misty…

-I made a truly gross noise when Matt walked into the the room Jessica was being held in, but I couldn’t help it, I’m so EXCITED!

-Wait, there are only 8 episodes? We need to move this along then.

This is the show I want.

-I wish I liked Elektra. I want to like Elektra…

-Elektra asking “who” she is. I feel ya, girl.

-I’m not sure about Luke/Claire. I still ship Luke/Jessica and Claire’s the only person I liked with Matt, so this is all screwed up.

-Yeah, Jessica, your lawyer’s into some weird shit.

-Yes, Danny, you do have a shit-ton of privilege.

-I could listen to Mike Coulter talk all day. And by subjecting myself to this binge, I kinda am.

-Let me try to find something I like about Danny. Hmmm. His shoes are kind of neat.

-But, see, now he’s barefoot. Get it together, Danny.

Put it away, Danny.

-What’s the significance of the wad of cash wrapped in rubber bands? I feel like this is a thing I’ve forgotten. Luke seems concerned about it.

-Oh, I was vaguely concerned about Danny’s safety for a moment!

-What are those weird darts they’re shooting? Am I supposed to remember that or connect it to a past storyline?

-YES, LUKE.

-Cue obligatory hallway fight that we now have to have in every Marvel/Netflix show thanks to Daredevil season 1.

-Okay, punching through a sword is pretty cool.

I always stand staggered with other passengers in elevators.

-“Whoa. She is very strong.”

-Check these four out bickering and being charming.

-GAH! THE JESSICA/LUKE IS KILLING ME.

-Okay. I need my favorite Defender to actually, like, join the Defenders now. Oh. There she is. As I was saying that, Jessica made her dramatic re-entrance.

-No! Colleen!

-“Nice ears.”

-A dying villain is far more dangerous than a fit one.

-Ew. Decapitated heads rolling across the floor aren’t really my jam.

-I do really like Elektra’s costume.

-Is Stick trying to be a Defender? He’s always there.

-Oh, cool. An excuse for them all to beat up Danny.

-We’re really milking the decapitated head.

-I…I don’t quite understand why Elektra is a match for Matt, Jessica, and Luke with each of their different sets of powers. I mean, the only way Jessica could take Luke down was to literally shoot him in the face.

-Why is “Daredevil” so hard for people to remember?

-No! Sigourneeeeeeeeeeeeey! That’s it?! Goddamn it.

-Misty has all the same questions I do.

-Yay! More Foggy! Why the hell didn’t they send him to Misty with Claire, Trish, Malcolm, and Karen? I mean, yes, he’s ended up there anyway, but don’t pretend like Foggy isn’t still  your top priority, Matt.

-Foggy:”I brought you a change of clothes.” *Matt opens the bag, revealing the Daredevil costume* Foggy is THE best.

-I feel bad for Misty. They’re putting her in a really tough spot. She trusts them, but she’s gonna get in trouble when they run off. And then she’s responsible for locking them up when they break the law, whether their reasons are justified or not.

-Boss battle!

-All I could think when Karen was typing as the power shut down was “quick! Back up your shit! Command S!”

-WHAT THE FUCK? Are those dinosaur bones? Unless they’re bringing Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur into this they have some serious explaining to do. It’s not supposed to be a dragon, is it? I’m not sure how I feel about dragons in the Marvel Televisual Universe. And I LIKE dragons.

-Madame Gau trying to Kilgrave Iron Fist.

-No! Colleen!

-And now I’m experiencing technical difficulties. Just play the last half of the episode please, Netflix.

-No! Misty!

-This is how we’re ending? Daredevil and Elektra lovingly beating the living hell out of each other?

-Ouch. After Jessica reuniting with Trish and Malcolm, Luke standing with Claire, and Danny walking in with Colleen, Foggy and Karen realize their guy is the only one not coming back.

-Why is Colleen the only person there when Misty wakes up?! She got her damn arm chopped off trying to help you! But I guess there setting up a Daughters of the Dragon thing (by the way, Netflix, I’d watch that).

-Alias Investigations! When is Jessica Jones season 2?!

-And, gasp! Matt’s alive! I’m super shocked (not).

-Yes, yes, we haven’t forgotten about Punisher, don’t worry.

-But, dude, are we just gonna ignore that whole thing about the dragons now?

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Feminism within Quentin Tarantino Films

feminism                                                                                                                                              noun fem·i·nism \ˈfe-mə-ˌni-zəm\                                 

  • 1 :  the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes

  • 2 :  organized activity on behalf of women’s rights and interests    

Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Quentin Tarantino has been accused of most every -ism you can think of, sexism being a particular hot topic button. I, as a woman, am baffled by this. Feminism, by definition, is the equal treatment of men and women. This means if there’s a movie where the men get beat up, the women get beat up too. Feminism DOESN’T mean that the girls get out of every situation scot-free. No one in a Tarantino movie does.

I’m not arguing. Sometimes he misses the mark a bit. Not every movie he make is great in the lady department. But I’m gonna take his movies on a case by case basis and point out the feminism, or lack thereof, in each of the 8 feature films he’s both written and directed in their entirety (which means I’m not including True Romance (aside from a mention), Natural Born Killers, Sin City, Four Rooms, From Dusk Till Dawn, or TV/short films).

Reservoir Dogs

https://cdn.miramax.com/media/assets/6a00d41438c4456a470123f1aed0cf860f.jpgThere are no female character in this film. Aside from some featured extras. They talk about women a fair amount, including a nod to Pam Grier who would later star as the title character in Jackie Brown, but there really aren’t any women in the film. But there was in the script, Jodie. As a matter of fact, they shot all her scenes, only for them later to be cut from the movie. She works with Freddy and Holdaway. A fellow undercover cop, she’s part of the police investigation.

There are also two notable women mentioned as they tie into the Tarantino-verse: Alabama (as in Alabama Worley, the female lead from True Romance, who we find out was Larry’s ex-crime partner) and in another deleted scene Bonnie (as in Jimmy’s wife from “The Bonnie Situation”).

It’s not that there aren’t any women in this world, it’s that there aren’t any women on this job. They make the occasional sexual comment, but nothing jumps out at me as being overtly sexist. In the end, it’s sort of a wash.

(Weird side note: it’s my favorite film of his for its simplicity.)

Pulp Fiction

I think people forget how many featured women are actually in this film: Mia Wallace, Fabienne, Honey Bunny, Jody, Trudy, Esmerelda, and Raquel. Granted, they’re mostly minor characters with some major exceptions, Mia Wallace being one of the most central as well as one of the most memorable.

https://i1.wp.com/25.media.tumblr.com/05d2f9610270bed7dd50c6fd0d165cfe/tumblr_mud7be6wog1qkx9ego1_250.gifThe movie opens and closes with a woman robber just a dangerous as her male counterpart, a cab driver non-plussed that her fare just killed a guy, said murderer’s girlfriend (though does Fabienne know Butch killed the other boxer?), a couple of heavily-pierced suburban drug dealers, a woman who disposes of dead bodies in hot cars, and the wife of a crime boss. Not women to be trifled with.

The women aren’t in the roles of the hitmen (yet), but are just as dangerous. And all these characters have agency. Many films use women to drive a plot forward or make a male character spring into action, fewer allow the woman to act for herself.

So, let’s talk about Mia. The interesting thing about her is, she seems very innocent. But given who her husband is, this is unlikely. She knows what she wants, says so, and then gets it. It’s just the sorts of things she wants are dance trophies from kitschy dinners.

When she O.D.’s, it yanks the rug out from under the audience’s feet. She’s gone from being the fun character to driving one of the most intense sequences in the film. By the time she’s revived, she’s covered in blood, snot, sweat, and saliva with a massive needle sticking out of her chest. It’s tough to watch. But does she look any worse than Butch by the end of his sequence? It’s not pretty, it’s what equality really looks like. We didn’t need the lead actress to be glamorized. What happens to her isn’t glamorous. It makes it real and it deepens our concern that something really bad might actually happen. And all the while we never lose sight of who her character is (“…something”).

Jackie Brown

Jackie Brown is the first Tarantino film where the lead character was well and truly a woman. While the style is a little atypical of his other films, it’s just as grungy, disturbed, and cool. So cool. Point me in the direction of a cooler female protagonist, because I’m not sure there is one.

And this movie’s all about Jackie.

https://rambleonnerdyponderings.files.wordpress.com/2017/08/29f5a-jackie-brown-1.jpg?w=393&h=221

The fact that she’s a woman? It matters and comes into play. The fact that she’s black? It matters and it comes into play. The fact that she’s a black woman? Oh, yeah (which is funny, since Tarantino didn’t realize the character in the book was white until he reread it. He just pictured Pam Grier).

The other prominent female, Melanie is frustrating and sometimes obnoxious, but is in total control of her own actions. Even when doing what Ordell tells her to, she  does it on her own terms. Jackie even briefly tries to have a sort of “us girls” comradery with her, though it doesn’t really pay off.

Jackie Brown isn’t as popular as Tarantino’s other films and probably wouldn’t normally draw quite the same crowd. There’s something a little more grown-up about.  Sure, she can hold and point a gun, but she’s not the same violent tearaway protagonist of Tarantino’s earlier films. But that’s what makes the character of Jackie Brown so powerful.

Kill Bill

And so we come to the Bechdel-smashing samurai-western cinematic epic that is Kill Bill. AND IT’S ONE FILM. I WILL NOT ARGUE THIS POINT WITH YOU. THE STUDIO MADE HIM CUT IT IN HALF FOR LENGTH IN IT’S THEATRICAL RELEASE.

This has to be the goriest movie Tarantino’s made to date. the amount of blood spilled is over the top and often played for laughs, but the ear poor Marvin Nash lost in Reservoir Dogs simply can’t compare to the limbs of the Crazy 88.

https://static.comicvine.com/uploads/original/11111/111115760/5800653-1922931482-giphy.gif

The protagonist is a woman, 3 of the 5 people on her kill list, numerous members of the Crazy 88, the band playing (the 5,6,7,8’s), O’Ren’s translator, Gogo, the assassin sent to murder the Bride, all women.  The Bride’s motivation? Vengence for her daughter.

Examine the 5 fights with the people on her list. The sequence with O’Ren, especially if you include everything that led up to it, is the most extravagant. The fight with Vernita kicks off the movie. Her fight with Ellie is the penultimate battle before she takes on Bill. Budd’s death is practically an afterthought. While Budd’s killed by a Black Mamba (the Bride’s code name), Elle sets him up. He’s an alcoholic bouncer, barely holding onto his job. Okay, sure, he buries the Bride alive, but she just busts out. He’s hardly worth her time. The fight with Bill takes place while they’re both seated and lasts about 60 seconds. I’m not saying it’s not a big moment, it’s a huge moment, but very little time is spent on it.

Kill Bill features women out-bloodying and outfighting men. And has maybe the happiest ending of any movie on this list, with the Bride riding off into the sunset with her daughter, who turns out to be alive and well.

Death Proof

https://a.ltrbxd.com/resized/sm/upload/od/en/ir/po/death-proof-70-1200-1200-675-675-crop-000000.jpg?k=03a61bbe18

Death Proof is another film with a predominantly female cast. It pulls a Psycho on us and kills the 4 lead women halfway through the movie. The second half follows 4 new characters as they also get entangled with the villain, Stuntman Mike. While the 4 original women are cool, the 4 new women are badass.

Whereas the scope of Kill Bill is epic with a cast of hundreds, Death Proof is of a much smaller scope. Not that everyone’s limbs manage to stay attached (that shot of the leg *shudder*). That would be asking for too much. But it’s all music and muscle cars and there’s nothing wrong with that. As the second half of Grindhouse, it actually is of itself an antidote to the zombie apocalyptic Planet Terror (not that there aren’t some good female characters in that too). It feels more exploitative than a lot of Tarantino’s films, but by the time the end winds around…I think that was actually the point. While you were busy ogling these women, they were preparing to fuck you up.

The standout of the film is real life stuntwoman Zoe Bell, playing herself. Since being Uma Thurman’s stunt double in Kill Bill she’s starred as her own character in both this and The Hateful Eight.

Inglourious Basterds

And so we move on to the historicals.

I get that, given the title of the film, people have a tendency to say that Aldo is the main character in this movie. And then I argue with them about how Shosanna is. The story is 100% about her. The bastards (or should I say “basterds”) are just along for the ride. They didn’t need to blow up the theater; she had already burned it down.

https://hugelolcdn.com/comments/2118287.gif

The two most intense sequences, the strudel scene and, though she barely appears in it, the opening, center around her. It’s her theater the Nazis have the premiere in. It’s her relationship with Zoller that makes that happen. Everything with the bastards is just happenstance. Their inclusion makes for some fun scenes and serves to break up the tension, but if you remove all their scenes, the outcome would have been about the same. She never even interacts with them.

Of course, there is a woman working with the bastards. German actress and spy for the Americans, Bridget Von Hammersmark. Another great character, who was doing really well until her lost shoe gave her away. In some ways she’s Shosanna’s opposite: German, privileged, sophisticated, stylish, presumably with a fair bit more money (though Shosanna does own a theater). Yet they both want the same thing and both die for it.

Shosanna’s death is bloody and Bridget’s is savage, but they both go out fighting for what they think is right.

Django Unchained

From the feminist perspective there’s not as much to say here. There is a female lead, Broomhilda Von Shaft. Finding her is Django’s motivation. The one thing you can say is, they seem to have a genuine and respectful loving relationship.

https://38.media.tumblr.com/182d21a5a286501115f67fd107c8c748/tumblr_naolrfxvXx1qgime3o2_500.gif

We see some truly grueling things happen to her. Both men and women in this movie are treated horrifically (there are a couple of near unwatchable scenes, but the ones springing to mind are delegated to men).

Unfortunately, Broomhilda is basically trapped until Django is able to rescue her. She wasn’t exactly mishandled, she just wasn’t given a lot to do. She becomes a bit of a damsel in distress. But the character is compared to a princess in a German fairy tale, so that was likely the intent.

That’s not to minimize the intensity that Kerry Washington brings to the character, nor the difficult work that she had to put into playing her. She’s successful in making us like her and showing the hell that is Candyland, and we certainly want her to be saved, but the character’s purpose is more for the hero than herself.

The Hateful Eight

No heroes among these. Like Reservoir Dogs, The Hateful Eight is a movie about bad guys. I’d say this intriguing bunch are even less likeable than the dogs.

https://media.giphy.com/media/hnHvCaZVf1qY8/giphy.gifI get why this one is tough for some people. Daisy is the literal punching bag for much of the movie. The only comfort to be taken is the fact that Daisy is a psychopath and, had everything gone to plan, the few people who weren’t in on her escape should have all been killed (how didn’t than plan work? Tough luck, Daisy).

But you can’t say that she’s not a strong character. To be honest, she might have fared better had she kept quiet, just drawn less attention to herself, not have spit in people’s faces and laughed maniacally every time she was hit in the face. She’s the only character kept in handcuffs for much of the movie, and she’s the most terrifying. And she knows things some of the other character don’t. It gives her power over them. It’s no coincidence that Jennifer Jason Leigh scored one of the two Oscar nominations the movie got.

Like I mentioned when I talked about Pulp Fiction, it doesn’t over glamorizing the female character just because she’s the female character. In a way it’s liberating. It’s horrible to look at, but it’s a weirdly genuine. She’s an evil scheming psycho who just got punched in the face, she shouldn’t look like a prom queen dammit!

*****

The thing that Tarantino probably does best, is create interesting characters. I can name you a dozen male filmmakers off the top of my head that create great male characters, and feel they can stop there, toss a hot girl in, and call it a day. Look at this list. That’s just not the case here. Half these films have woman as the central character and each one is different from the last. All his characters are fucked up people in fucked up situations in a fucked up world. And they all get fucked up. Whenever I hear someone going into a rant about how Tarantino’s films are harmful to women and the sexist fantasies of a misogynist, all I can think is:

 

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Max Headroom Reboot Pitch

My latest project. I think the video is pretty self-explanatory. Do you know anyone who can help me out? Either way, pass it on.

#MaxHeadroomReturns

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