Tag Archives: Television

Doctor Who S10e2: Smile

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The Doctor and Bill travel to their first destination together a far future off world Earth colony. Where they encounter robots which communicate to people via emoji symbols. On further investigation they find the colony devoid of any human life. The new travelling companions have to solve the mystery of the colony while at the same time smiling as if their lives depended on it.

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When a second episode of a television season airs it sometimes is not as strong as the season opener. I am pleased to say Smile is an exception to this statement. This episode is another strong performer. This episode is based on a strong premise which allows for a good depth for a second episode. Again like last weeks episode this one continues the vein of getting the series back to it’s core basics and not over complicating things which is a trap Doctor Who can fall into from time to time.

This episode marks the second time Frank Cottrell-Boyce has written for the series (the last time being In The Forest of The Night) this episode was clearly the better of the two entries.

Both Peter Capaldi and Pearl Mackie give strong performances in this episode (Matt Lucas only briefly features at the start of it) as we continue to see the relationship between The Doctor and Bill grow as they continue to face new situations.

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My only real issue with this episode is the use of emoji’s in it. I understand the show would need to stay relevant to the modern times however I don’t feel that emoji is my preferred method of this. There are other things in modern society that the series could use to relate to younger audiences. However perhaps I am simply getting too old and miss the point of some of these things.

All in all another strong episode the series is going very well so far. We shall see if it carries on for a while yet

Episode Rating 4/5

Season Rating 8/10

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Doctor Who S10e1: The Pilot

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With the exception of the Christmas special last year Doctor Who has been absent from our screens for a whole year. The wait is now over as Season 10 of the revived series has hit our screens.

The Pilot continues the partnership from the Christmas Special with The 12 Doctor (Peter Capaldi) and Nardole (Matt Lucas) now posing as a university professor and his assistant. A worker from the university canteen Bill Pots (Pearl Mackie) is called to The Doctor’s office when it is noticed she is attending all his lectures.

Meanwhile Bill meets a student named Heather (Stephanie Hyam) who she starts to become interested in. She however has a mystery around her and The Doctor, Nardole & Bill must solve it. After which The Doctor agrees to have Bill travel with him.

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The Pilot is a strong start to the new season. It introduces Bill in a nice and slightly different way to how companions have been introduced in the past. I suspect Stephen Moffat enjoys exploring the different ways to bring a new companion into the fold.

Pearl Mackie has a strong introduction to the show with an excellent performance. I think she will make a great addition to the cast for this season.

As we have come to expect there are many easter eggs in this episode perhaps there were a few more than usual. If you did not catch them all perhaps a second watch will show you more of them

The Pilot brings Doctor Who back onto our screens in a nice way which allows new viewers a chance to enter the universe in a nice an easy manner. It gives us a strong start to the season it remains to be seen how long that can be maintained in what we already know to be the last season with Peter Capaldi as The Doctor.

Episode Rating: 4/5

Season Rating 4/5

 

Doctor Who: The Return of Doctor Mysterio

In 1992 The Doctor encounters an 8 year old boy named Grant (Logan Hoffman) while installing a device on a roof to help repair damaged that was caused when he last visited New York City. During this encounter The Doctor gives Grant a wish granting gemstone to hold which is used to power the device. Grant mistaking the stone as a cure to his cold swallows the stone. The stone gives Grant his wish of having super hero powers.

Returning to New York 24 years later The Doctor investigates the research company Harmony Shoals while doing so he encounters Lucy Fletcher (Charity Wakefield) who is an investigative journalist also looking into the company. Grant ( Justin Chatwin) is now serving as Lucy’s nanny and helping to look after her baby girl while leading a double life as the super hero known as The Ghost.

Together they all try to unravel the mystery of Harmony Shoals and what they are truly doing

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Doctor Who Christmas specials I tend to find can be a bit of a hit and miss thing. For example last year’s entry The Husbands of River Song I thought was a great special (review for that can be found here https://downundergeek.wordpress.com/2015/12/28/doctor-who-the-husbands-of-river-song/) While on other occasions they can be not as strong. This entry to the list of Christmas specials fall about in the middle of the road.

The acting on the whole was reasonably solid throughout the episode with Justin Chatwin, Charity Wakefield putting in good supporting roles. Peter Capaldi had some great moments and some good comedy to the episode. The main setback for the cast was Nardole (Matt Lucas), while his performance was good I felt the character did not fit in with the story that well and did not really contribute much to it.

The main down point for me is it felt very similar to other things Moffat had done before and was not really breaking into any new territory . While it was not a bad episode it does show the tiredness of his time as show runner. Hopefully the coming change for series 11 will bring a breath of fresh air into the show.

Having said that though I did enjoy how this special tied nicely into the previous one referencing the 24 years spent with River Song which was a nice way to tie up that story and also the fact we have not had any Doctor Who in 2016.

While not the strongest Christmas special it is not the worst. I would say it sits somewhere in the middle.

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Supergirl: S2E2 The Last Children of Krypton

We continue with Kara & Clark continuing to work together in National City. Clark & Hank are still now pleased to be around each other and the cause of this is soon reviled.

At CatCo Kara is introduced to her new boss as a reporter. Ms Grant decided to go to different things and appoints James as her successor.

Meanwhile Project Cadmus has a new prototype cyborg which is enhanced by kryptonite which was stolen from the DEO. It’s up to Clark & Kara to stop him.

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As the second season continues to be established a few of the characters are moved around into new positions for the coming season.

Tyler Hoechlin one again guest stars as The Man of Steel and continues to perform quite well in the role. I did find that the interactions between Snapper Carr & Kara did not feel quite right to me perhaps this will settle down a bit as I become accustom to the new character.

Generally however this episode continues to build on the strengths of the season opener.

Frequency S1E2: Signal and Noise

As Frank and Raimy continue to talk through time via his ham radio. Raimy convinces her dad to warn her mum Julie to be careful as she is going to be a victim of the nightingale killer. However Frank and Julie have not spoken in two years. Meanwhile Raimy and Frank start to investigate Thomas Goff as a possible person of interest they suspect might be the nightingale.

This series continues on it’s strong start with it’s pilot episode as we learn more about the lead characters and the changes their interactions through time are creating.

While I suspect the series was designed to keep the viewer engaged Frequency is developing into a show where you have to watch every episode because they all tie in. If you miss too much of it you may become lost and not know what’s going on.

It will be interesting to see how the show continues to grow and in which direction the creators take it.

Supergirl S2E1: The Adventures of Supergirl

Season 2 of Supergirl kickes off right where season 1 finished with Martian Manhunter and Supergirl investigating an object that crashed to earth. As Kara continues to work out what job she wants to do her date with James Olsen is interrupted by an emergency with the maiden flight of The Venture. With the help of Superman (Tyler Hoechlin) they save the ship and all hands.

Supergirl brings her cousin to the DEO where clearly something between Hank and the man of steel is not quite right. Regardless Superman assists in the investigation with the events on The Venture. Investigations lead them to Lena Luthor (sister of Lex) who claims she is trying to rebrand her family’s business. As things unfold and with the possibility of a third kryptonian on earth season 2 is off to an interesting start.

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Season 2 of Supergirl is off to quite a strong start. We see the continued development of Supergirl/Kara and we see some interesting changes with some of the other characters as we come into the new season.

The inclusion of Superman/Clark Kent played by Tyler Hoechlin was done quite well I did not feel he overshadowed the show and complimented it rather nicely. Tyler being cast in the role was a nice move he fitted the bill quite well. Plus this version of Superman saved more people in 5 minutes in this episode than the movie version from Man of Steel saved in an entire movie.

Sometimes it is said that the start of a second season of a tv show is more critical than the pilot episode because sometimes it is the second season that can make or break a show. So far Supergirl season 2 is off to a reasonable start which hopefully it can carry throughout the season.

Frequency: Pilot Episode

Have you ever thought what you might do if you were presented with the chance to communicate with a deceased family member from the past what would you do?

That is the basic premise of Frequency. Based on the 2000 Gregory Hoblit film by the same name.

Frequency tells the story of Raimy Sullivan ( Peyton List) a NYPD detective who after a lightening storm finds she can communicate with her deceased father Francis “Frank” Sullivan (Riley Smith) a NYPD detective who was killed in 1996 while working undercover via his old ham radio. Raimy finds she is talking to her father in the time directly preceding her father’s death. Raimy gives her father advise in the hope of preventing her death which triggers the “butterfly effect” in the timeline. Frank & Raimy then have have to team up across time to work together on a decades old murder case.

I have not seen the original movie this series is based off however I have been informed that it is worth watching.

The series however starts very strongly. I came across it by way of a short 7 min clip on YouTube which immediately grabbed my attention (and in some parts gave me chills). The pilot episode shows a great deal of promise. The acting was very powerful with a good strong cast showing what they can put onto the screen from the very first scene.

Frequency is developed by Supernatural & Being Human’s Jeremy Carver. It is on The CW and is also on Netflix. It looks like running for at least 3 seasons from the start. This is a series which is well worth picking up now and going along for the ride.