What to do in my spare time…

The regular TV season is ending, and the Summer season will be starting soon.  Which means an awful lot of crappy reality TV, among other things.  Some of my favorite shows are ending – some will be coming back and some will not.  I’ve already seen previews for some of the networks, but Upfronts Week hasn’t started yet, so nothing is really OFFICIAL.

In the meantime, while I’m watching season finales (or buildups to season finales) and waiting for the fate of other shows to be determined, I’ve been wondering what to do to pass the time over the summer instead of watching reality TV.  Especially with the new baby coming, I’m going to have quite a bit of time doing “nothing” but taking care of the baby, so I found out Amazon is having a great deal/sale on movies and TV shows, as well as movie collectibles.

And don’t forget about International Star Wars Day tomorrow!

Shop Amazon – Movies

Shop Amazon DVD – May the Fourth – International Star Wars Day – Save 53 on Star Wars Blu-rays

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Monday Night Dramas: The Following, Bones, and Castle

Two season finales and a clip show.  In one night.  Bam, said the lady!

All three of my go-to Monday night dramas had new episodes last night.  I was a little disappointed (read: left on the edge of my seat because of a cliffhanger I wasn’t expecting) in two of my dramas because of their finales, and a little disappointed in one because it was a clip show.  And I hate clip shows.

But let’s start at the beginning.

(Warning:  I DO plan to include spoilers, so if you haven’t seen these episodes yet, please come back.  Unless you like spoilers like me, then by all means, continue reading)

The Following

I can’t tell you how much I have a love/hate relationship with this show.  Sometimes it’s just so gory and dramatic it makes me not want to watch.  But then I MUST see what happens next just to resolve everything that has already happened.

Last night’s episode was the culmination of the entire season, where we finally get to see the “good guys” get saved.  Only, do they really get saved?

When we last saw our characters (last week), Agent Parker was being buried alive, Joe was stealing away on boat taking Claire to an undisclosed location that he would only tell his “followers” and Ryan, and Ryan was trying to redeem himself by saving everyone.  Kevin Bacon – I love you, I really do.  But you cannot save the world.  Even on TV.

So, while being attacked in the woods by a sniper after finally finding an almost legitimate location for Agent Parker, Ryan and Weston grab the sniper, beat him to a bloody pulp to make him talk, and drive to Parker’s location.  Only it’s a little too late, and by the time they get there, Agent Parker is dead.  In her coffin was a copy of Joe’s manuscript with the “final” chapter conveniently left out, which leads Ryan to abandon Weston in the woods and go off to find Joe before he kills Claire.

Cut to the lighthouse where Joe is keeping Claire and some random guy his cult paid to take a boat there.  Claire is crying because she feels responsible for the deaths of all those girls Joe killed.  He can’t bare to lose his spotlight, and kills the extra guy to demonstrate the difference between actually killing someone and what Claire had done, which was nothing.

Ryan gets to the “island” only to be drugged and taken to the lighthouse where Joe is keeping Claire captive.  Ryan makes jabs at Joe being a hack writer which sets Joe off and throws him off guard (allegedly) and they get into a tussle where Ryan is able to escape and chase Joe out to the garage.  Joe lights it on fire, and it explodes leaving everyone to believe Joe is dead, including his cult followers.  HOWEVER, whether or not he is really dead has yet to be determined because he could have switched bodies with the guy he killed.

Meanwhile, everyone has a false sense of security, including Ryan and Claire – but they are quickly attacked by one of Joe’s cult members who stabbed Joe and Claire, possibly killing Claire…

To be continued…

I hate cliffhangers.  I like the idea of setting up suspense and I like speculating on what’s going to happen next.  BUT, I don’t know if this show is being renewed yet.  Mostly likely it will, but as a midseason replacement like it was this year.  So that means I have to wait even longer to find out what is really happening.

Bones

Ugh.  I really do love this show.  And like many of the fans, I’ve been waiting FOREVER for Booth and Bones to be together.  And now that might not happen again.  Sure, they have a kid, but they’ve got some pretty serious stuff by the end of this episode to deal with.

So… this episode marks another return of the famed serial killer, Pelant, who is once again terrorizing Booth, Bones, Sweets and the gang.  Not surprisingly, he’s causing chaos by hacking into computer systems and wreaking some serious havoc on the Squints’ ability to solve their current case, which just so happens to be mimicking unpublished papers Sweets wrote.

This time Pelant seems to be targeting Booth using Sweets’ research.  He uses a surrogate to murder two FBI agents who were with Booth a number of years ago during an incident called Crystal Creek.  This leads the gang to believe that Booth is the target this time, and by the end, he somewhat is.  But Pelant has set up such an intricate plan that it ends up being Sweets that is the target.

In true rational fashion, Bones finally proposes to Booth using jerky, and of course Booth says yes.  Cue fangirl squealing.  Pelant doesn’t like the idea of not being the center of attention, and Sweets points out that Bones’ proposal is doing just that: taking the spotlight off him.

After wreaking havoc and Sweets being saved from the almost murder, Pelant contacts Booth and tells him that if he marries Bones, he’ll be killing five innocent people at the park.  Booth can’t ignore that, and that night at home he tells Bones they can’t get married.  But he can’t tell her the real reason.  He only says that she didn’t really want it in the first place and the fact that they love each other is enough.  Bones is heartbroken, and with good reason.  After making a carefully thought out, rational, Bones-like decision, her proposal was denied.

I read an interview online with the creator of the show who said that the relationship between Booth and Bones was never going to be easy.  And they have a lot to deal with going into next season.  The fact that they are lying to each other about the reason for not getting married and being okay with not getting married is something that will test their relationship.  But don’t forget about Hodgins feeling responsible for the FBI agents dying – he could have killed Pelant when he had a chance in a previous episode.

Yup.  I’m sad Booth and Bones won’t be getting married anytime soon.  Like I said, I’ve been rooting for them since the beginning.  They have an unconventional relationship which makes it exciting and unique, but it is also complicated.  And I guess if it was easy, it wouldn’t be as satisfying.  I’m just hoping for a resolution that comes quickly next season.  But we’ll find out in September.

Castle

And then there was one…

Beckett stepped on a bomb.  Actually, she stepped on the triggering device for a bomb while investigating a possible crime scene.  And therein lies a clip show.

While the gang and the bomb squad tries to diffuse the bomb, Castle stays with Beckett trying to keep her spirits up and focused on other things rather than a bomb exploding under her feet.  The reminisce about their entire relationship, from the time he joined the precinct as a nuisance tagalong writer all the way up to them finally getting together.

Castle was incredibly brave by staying with Beckett.  But I expect that from Castle.  After going through a few hairbrained ideas that turn out to be completely off track, Castle comes in at the last minute with a revelation about the man who set the bomb, with less than two minutes to spare.  As it turned out, the bomb was not meant for the cops, but instead someone who had information about the criminal’s son – and that was the code to disengage the bomb.

Not at all predictable, but Castle and Beckett are often in danger.  And I love the fact that Beckett didn’t die, and they didn’t break up as a means of termination to avoid a messy goodbye because of the bomb.  And it was nice to see clips I hadn’t seen before, as well as clips put together in clever montages showing the cute, funny, and serious sides to Castle and Beckett’s relationship.

Can’t wait for the season finale.  And I’m happy this wasn’t it.  Why waste a finale by doing a clip show… ugh.

Home Improvement Reunion with Last Man Standing

I rarely get a chance to watch Last Man Standing, mostly because that is bedtime for the Boy.  But I caught this week’s episode with special guest Jonathan Taylor Thomas.  It was quite a cute reunion between JTT and Tim Allen, who spent many years as father and son on Home Improvement.

Last Man Standing is a sitcom about a father with three daughters, rather than three sons.  So, naturally, it’s great to see a total opposite scenario for the man’s man.  And that’s probably what made the reunion even funnier.

There were plenty of jokes, when JTT was actually onscreen, about him looking familiar, being a middle child, and having a souped up car for “more power” complete with trademark Tim the Tool Man grunting.

Being the season finale, there are many other changes to come, like kids leaving for college and moving out on their own finally, but I wonder of JTT will be back for more cameos, or if this will be a one-shot deal.

Not gonna lie, as a diehard JTT fan from waaaaaayyy back, I was excited to see the reunion for a couple reasons.  First, because who doesn’t love seeing their favorite TV characters reunite in totally different roles, and second, because it’s fun to do a whole “where are they now” with people who are your age (JTT is 31, and a year older than me, btw).  I was a little disappointed in his looks, but years age people.  He didn’t look old, just different, and not like the cute little boy whose posters I plastered to my walls.  And that’s just fine.  He still looks… good?  But that doesn’t really matter.  Tim looks great.

The episode, overall, was alright, and I’m sure I’ll be watching it next season, should it be renewed.

Celebrity Apprentice: “I’m Being Punked by a Jackson”

Another week, and another bad firing decision.  Although, again, I think Trump was right in saying he really didn’t have a choice.  La Toya was fired.  However, Trump said himself that had she brought Omarosa back to the boardroom, Omarosa would have been fired – and that would have been the easy choice.  But since she didn’t, and no one agreed with bringing back anyone else to the boardroom, La Toya had to go.

This week’s challenge was to created a live soap opera ad for some new Crystal product.  Stephen Baldwin and La Toya Jackson were the project managers, and both teams got to work with a real soap opera star: Susan Lucci and Jack Wagner.  The entire time, I really wanted Stephen Baldwin’s team to lose because I wanted to see him get fired.  In fact, him being the PM was hilarious because he was really being a dick the whole time and letting all the “power” go to his head.  Marilu Henner said it best when she said, “Stephen is an actor playing the role of a director.”  AWESOME.  And couldn’t be more on.  Even Penn had something to say about his managing style.  But in the end, the Crystal Light executives liked their soap opera better.

Trace Adkins had a major crush on Susan Lucci ❤

La Toya’s team was actually pretty good and had great ideas for their presentation.  The thorn in their team was, of course, Omarosa.  She complained and did the bare minimum while she was there, AND she tried to take off La Toya’s head a time or two.  But then… she left.  An alleged emergency with the estate of her late fiance.  And what it meant was that she didn’t contribute very much to her team.  Which would have been grounds for her to be fired – IF she was brought back to the boardroom.

The judges on Trump’s side of the table were Ivanka and last year’s winner, Aresenio Hall.  He was so cool.  He was fair and did his job without fighting with anyone – until Omarosa tried to pick a fight with him in the boardroom.  It was great to see him back because he really was that awesome.

Again, I think the wrong decision was made on who to bring back to the boardroom, and that cost La Toya her spot on the show.  What was funny was watching her try to flaunt her “Jackson” power.  Both her and Trump brought up the fact that she was fired, and she was brought back – a first in Celebrity Apprentice history.  She wanted to make more history tonite, and requested that she be granted the power to fire someone on her team.  She was ready to fire Omarosa.  Trump denied her, of course, and she ended up NOT bringing Omarosa back to the boardroom.  Considering a minute ago she was ready to fire her, I can’t see why she wouldn’t bring her in and put her on the chopping block.

Right before she was fired, and again during her after interview in the limo, La Toya said she didn’t bring Omarosa to the boardroom because she thought Trump was falling for her fake tears and dramatic attitude.  But Trump said himself that he would have fired Omarosa if she was there.  So initially, La Toya wasn’t taking any crap from Omarosa, but ultimately “backed down” from the fight by not bringing her back to the boardroom.  Clearly, the decision for Trump was easy, but it was the “weak players” to choose from that were the wrong choice.

What do you think of last night’s episode of Celebrity Apprentice?

Grey’s Anatomy, S9 Ep17: Transplant Wasteland

Oh silly, stupid Grey’s Anatomy.  There you go making me cry again.  Pfft.

After a week off for a rerun, last night’s episode was all new.  After the plane crash, suing the hospital, a possibly horrific buyout, and attendings quitting so they could “save” the hospital, they finally did.  With the Harper Avery Foundation.  With Jackson Avery at the wheel as the representative and head of the board of directors, which included Derek, Meredith, Cristina, Callie and Arizona.

Avery was clearly uncomfortable in his position throughout the entire episode, with scenes of his mother defending him and showing the utmost faith that he will pull through.

The basic premise for the episode, aside from the clear issues with doctors running the hospital rather than a traditional board, was the idea that the OR’s were not staffed enough, and there were three/four transplants scheduled to happen almost at the same time.  Insanity ensued.  Especially with the newly adopted (but not long kept) policies from the former possible buyer, Pegasus, which everyone, including Bailey, constantly complained about.  And those policies continued to have awful consequences: Meredith getting on a plane to retrieve a kidney, but finding out it was already en route to Seattle per a former idiotic Pegasus policy.

One of the big dramatic, power struggle moments was when Hunt quit.  He got tired of being blamed for the plane crash, and being left out of the loop, and decided not to wait to be fired, and quit instead.  Tensions were clearly high, and no one could stand the heat.

Clearly, the new board was having trouble being in charge, and needed a leader (as they have demonstrated over and over again through the previous nine seasons).  Each doctor as an individual is strong and very good at leadership, but having to work together for a common goal lead to some pretty interesting power struggling, especially with Avery being younger and less experienced and forced into his role because his mother bought the hospital.

The best and most tear-inspiring moment came at the end of the episode, after Avery finally stepped up and started making the hard decisions.  He figured out the OR situation on the fly, and used that confidence to boost himself in the board room.  Forget all the policies, the foundation will answer to the board, not the other way around, and they should be proud to be a hospital run by doctors, rather than the traditional board.

Then Avery proposed a name change to remind them why they were there and why they went through everything.  Of course, everyone agreed.  It will now be the GREY SLOAN MEMORIAL HOSPITAL.  In honor of Lexie and Mark, who both died in the plane crash.

Not gonna lie.  I totally teared up during that scene.  Especially after Derek confronted Hunt to tell him he was pissed at the world… and Mark.

I expect great things, as always, with the end of this season.  This show hasn’t failed me yet.

What are your thoughts on this episode?  How do you think the season will end?

Veronica Mars and Bates Motel

What do these two shows have in common?  Not a damn thing.  Other than that I was trying to watch episodes of Veronica Mars on the WB website, and the commercials were saturated with promos for Bates Motel.

I don’t mind commercials, I really don’t.  I have subscriptions to Hulu, which has commercials, and Netflix, which does not.  I’m fine with watching networks promote other shows and products because the money  needs to come from somewhere.  But A&E along with the WB have absolutely destroyed my interest in ever watching Bates Motel by oversaturating their precious commercial space with the same promo over and over.  It’s not like it was a different promo for the same show, which would have been better.  But, no.  It was the same thing during every. single. commercial. break.  The music was creepy, and the show looked pretty cool – the first five times I saw it.  But the more I saw it, the less I wanted to watch.

I’m not in the business of advertising or promotions.  I am just a regular consumer.  And as a regular consumer, I think it is poor advertising or poor promoting to over-saturate a promo into a show.  I understand their strategy in trying to get the word out that this potentially awesome show is going to be starting soon.  But since when does poisoning your potential audience/customer with the same images to the point of nausea seem like a good idea?

I know I’m just ranting here, but I’m more than a little annoyed.  And like I mentioned a few times, I probably will not be catching Bates Motel when it airs.  Sorry, A&E.

Veronica Mars Movie Kickstarter

O. M. G.  This was possibly the BEST news I’ve heard all day – and in regards to TV, it’s the best news I’ve heard EVER.

A Veronica Mars Movie will FINALLY happen.  Maybe. The catch is that it will be funded by the fans, via their kickstarter, and they have a goal of $2 million – with hopes for more.  I’m am SO in.  I literally cried after watching their kickstarter promo, THAT’S how happy I am about this.

This news was released not long ago, maybe within a few hours, and when I checked their site a minute ago, they were already up over $300,000 with over 4000 backers.

Check out their kickstarter page here.  All the potential movie details and bonus prizes for those that donate are all available there.

Rob Thomas and Kristen Bell have both made comments in the past about how they would love to bring Veronica back in movie form, but the funding was just never there.  But with this awesome new way to fund movie and television projects (kickstarter), there’s a really good chance I’ll be watching Veronica Mars in movie form.  WOOHOO!