ConStar Clicks

The 2015-16 TV season is fast approaching, and with that comes endless articles on various trends and the state of television today. This week’s ConStar Clicks features a few of those articles and a couple of older ones. Click away!

Over on NPR: Television 2015: Five Shows They Will Never Stop Making including: The Adventures Of Mr. Superabilities And Detective Ladyskeptic and Healing Dr. Chilly. 

Another NPR piece: Television 2015: Are We Done Hating Television? which discusses how movie stars are moving to TV, which used to be a shocking thing, as TV was what movie stars did when they couldn’t get movie roles. Now things are different.

Disdain for television is so old and so powerful that HBO used to try to repurpose it into something useful, like fuel made from old French-fry grease. That’s what “It’s not TV. It’s HBO.” was.

Another great line:

Disdain for television is so old and so powerful that HBO used to try to repurpose it into something useful, like fuel made from old French-fry grease. That’s what “It’s not TV. It’s HBO.” was.

TV NOW: Are You Cheating On Your TV Shows? [Seat 42F] considers the sheer amount of television that is on the air today and the way social media and other factors force us to choose which shows to watch live and which to save for that DVR/Netflix binge

Total scripted television shows rose from 340 shows in 2013 to 371 shows in 2014 and now there will be over 400 shows at the end of 2015 — that is an increase of over 60 additional television shows in the past 2 years.

Also:

It became essential to triage which TV shows had to be watched immediately or LIVE or suffer the repercussions.

An important question is asked: Is TV Writing the Best Job Ever? [Huffington Post]

(and answered by TV writer Jane Espenson, who’s worked for some of the best SFF shows on TV, including Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Once Upon a Time, and Battlestar Galactica.)

This piece on the BBC America Anglophenia blog wonderfully explores how Tatiana Maslany perfects the various accents and dialects she performs so flawlessly on Orphan Black:

In playing these diverse characters, the Canadian-born actress has the Herculean task of defining each individual through speech and behavior without tripping over into Saturday Night Live-level caricature. And that’s not even accounting for the performances in which a clone pretends to be another clone. Nuances are layered on nuances.

If you’ve ever watched Orphan Black, you know those nuances are serious! Also why hasn’t Tatiana hosted SNL yet?!

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ConStar Clicks

Over on Buzzfeed, 51 TV Writers Reveal Their Favorite Thing They’ve Ever Written, which is really cool. A few of my favorite shows and writers are on the list, including Mike Shur (Parks and Rec‘s Halloween Surprise is his pick, which I of course watched about 15 times the night it aired), Jennie Snyder Urman of Jane the Virgin, Bryan Fuller (whose choice was Pushing Daisies‘ “Pie-lette”—just the title makes it one of my favorite episodes as well), and Rob Thomas (who also chose a pilot, the one for Veronica Mars).

Stephen Colbert‘s soon coming Late Show debut means there have been dozens upon dozens of articles written about him, his process, and his future on the show. Luckily for these magazines, I love Stephen Colbert. Here are a few of my fave articles written about him so far:

Netflix spares the average viewer from 130 hours of commercials a year, according to The AV Club. But how much money does that equal? Even based on what a cheap commercial might cost, I imagine it’s a pretty high number (I don’t do math if I don’t have to, so don’t ask me to make a guesstimate). But Netflix’s astounding success probably makes that money back and more. Amazing.

The Flash’s Carlos Valdes, Danielle Panabaker and showrunner Andrew Kreisberg talk diversity [Blastr]

The EW Community points out the downside to constant binge watching:

There is, however, a significant downside to always making television available all at once: the loss of the communal viewing experience. Say what you will about the Internet and social media, but one of the wonderful things about it is the access it has given all of us—to people who are interested in the same things we are. Live-tweeting a show or taking to the Internet afterward to read reviews, ask questions, or share thoughts means we no longer have to enjoy our favorite shows in the isolation of our own homes. That’s a beautiful thing.

As a person who makes most of her connections, both on- and offline, through mutual love of TV shows (and as someone who wants to write for television in order to spur those connections in other people), I definitely agree that bingeing TV shows takes away from the communal aspect of watching TV. Through social media, we’ve been able to make primetime viewing necessary with various Twitter community live tweets (see the Black Girl Nerds and Nerds of Color communities as prime examples), where you have to be watching a show live to engage with your online friends (or even go online, for fear of spoilers). TV’s power to connect people is lost when we can’t talk about our shows because half your friends haven’t watched them yet. With one episode, it’s easier to wait for them to catch up; if they’re a season behind, it’s harder. Hopefully a mixture of weekly and marathon series continues, so that we can have the best of both worlds.

Snoopy says it all:

ConStar Clicks

I’ve been on hiatus (not really on purpose, just life and work getting in the way), but sometimes I still collect links for ConStar Clicks and then never post them because I either have too few or no time. Here are some links I’ve accumulated during this sorta hiatus. More Clicks coming soon (for real, there’s already a draft for next week’s!).

How Does an Aspiring TV Writer Get Discovered by an Agent? [Splitsider]

Search for a story that is meaningful to you, and excavate the depths of your imagination — what have you dreamed about writing, what do you wish you could watch? It doesn’t have to be a pilot, even. Is there an indie movie idea you’re dying to get out?

Basically, write what you want to write, no matter how wacky or unconventional, because agents will see the potential of it and it could get you work. Definitely something I needed to hear. Lesson of the day: Write it anyway.

Two articles on TV Staffing season (which has passed for this year, but is always useful for next spring!)

I’ve applied to three writing fellowships this year (!!). As notification season quickly approaches, this article was a very helpful read. Cross your fingers for me guys!

 

TV is BAE

I made an image proclaiming TV IS BAE

TV is BAE

Still working on my graphic design skills—thinking of alternate ones to make—but I kind of like how it turned out. The heart in the middle was mostly an accident, then I brought out its shape a little more. Any graphic designer types out there have any suggestions? Link back to this blog or tag me on twitter if you wanna use it, please!

Inspired by this “books are bae” poster I saw:

Books are still bae, but TV is also bae, television is very entertaining, but do not forget to go out for a walk once in a while, when you go out take your baby with a baby trend range jogging stroller. I think bae, like best friends, (as Mindy Lahiri would probably state) is not one person/one thing but a tier.  

Clone Club MVP Orphan Black Finale

Just realized I never shared my Orphan Black MVP post here! For shame! In typical corny fashion, the MVP for the final episode of Orphan Black’s 3rd season was everyone, every member of Clone Club. This includes everyone who was at the Bubbles dinner (Sarah, Cosima, Alison, Helena, Donnie, Mrs. S, Scott, Felix, and Art) and poor, self-sacrificing Delphine. It remains to be seen if she is a current or former member of Clone Club.

Click through for all my breakdowns of what made each character a key member of clone club in the Orphan Black finale.

While you’re here, you can click through to my HelloGiggles article on Tatiana Maslany‘s well-deserved—and long fought for—Emmy nomination!

Also I never shared my post about Paul’s MVP week! Here it is! So sorry to have already forgotten you, Major Dieden….

ConStar Clicks: anatomy of shows via Wrong Hands

It’s been awhile hasn’t it? Peeking out of a sort of hiatus (life stuff and new jobs and exhaustion and no new TV…)  to share this image I saw today. Made me chuckle but it’s also true. As a TV structure junkie who is trying to write specs, this is both funny and useful because you can see how broad structure is across different genres.

Click through to see more of John Atkinson’s comics: anatomy of shows | Wrong Hands.

This week’s ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP: Donnie and Helena, hands-down

I love Orphan Black MVPs and this week’s episode made my choice especially fun. Only one more week of decisions to make!

Another week of hard Clone Club MVP choices. Mrs. S stepped up and literally took the stage and Sarah used her endless determination to find the Castor original, but this week showcased the show’s best comedic pairing to date: Helena and Donnie. We were going to dedicate this week’s MVP to Donnie alone, but his strengths are magnified by Helena.

Click through to recap why Donnie and Helena were the BEST this week. Love this pairing so much! This week’s ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP: Donnie and Helena, hands-down

My Favorite New TV Characters From the ’14-’15 Season

I fell in love with an extraordinary number of new characters this TV season. Looking back in the ones I loved or connected with the most, I decided I’d make a list of my favorite new characters from this TV season. Once I made my list, I realized that they were all people of color. This was not on purpose, but it delights me greatly.

Cisco Ramon (Carlos Valdes) ⇒ The Flash

When Caitlin and Cisco guest starred in Arrow on season two, I didn’t care about them. I couldn’t really grasp who they were or connect with them at all. Once The Flash started, however, they quickly came into their own and Cisco proved to be one of the seasons funniest and savviest characters. I think what draws me to Cisco is the same thing that draws me to characters like Abed Nadir from Community or Kenneth the Page from 30 Rock. All of these characters are like me: pop culture savvy, people who make references to movies and TV on a daily if not hourly basis and are always looking for the hope and the humor in life. Cisco, by nature of his pop culture obsessed nature, is one of the meta characters on the show, the fact that he has recently been revealed to be a metahuman makes that even more meta. All things I love.

How do you not love him?

Ravi Chakrabarti (Rahul Kohli) ⇒ iZombie

iZombie’s Ravi is the most recent addition to this list, but definitely a character I want to protect at all costs. (Being that it’s a zombie show, all characters run the risk of dying, but don’t do it to Ravi!) I think what first struck me about Ravi was his loyalty. He meets Olivia Moore, this weird girl who used to be an ER doctor, and when he discovers her secret, he doesn’t tell anyone, not even her. He vows to keep her secret and help find a cure for zombieism with no personal gain. His immediate loyalty to both her and Major is extremely endearing. He’s also snarky, has fantastic hair, a great accent, and looks great in a suit. I hope season two provides for Ravi backstory and opportunities for Liv and Major (and Peyton?) to return the loyalty favor.

We’re glad you are, Ravi.

Maggie Pierce (Kelly McCreary) ⇒ Grey’s Anatomy

It’s hard to introduce a new character when your show is 11 seasons in, but Grey’s Anatomy manages to consistently add new characters and have fans come to love them. One of the first things I loved about Maggie was her hair. As a natural black girl myself, seeing curls like hers on TV is always a delight. I was hesitant about her character, as she was introduced so soon around Cristina Yang’s exit—I feared they would try to replace Cristina in Meredith’s life, especially once you find out she is her sister. And while Maggie is slowly plugging the hole that Cristina (and now Derek) left in Meredith’s life, she isn’t trying to replace her. She is her own character who interacts with Meredith in a different way, a way that Meredith needs now that she’s lost those who were previously so close to her. Maggie brings loyalty (have I mentioned I love loyalty in fictional characters? Because I do.), a willingness to be there no matter what the question (her offer to babysit Mer’s kids), and a somewhat normal family background. She’s also awkward, nerdy (she’s an expert crossword puzzle solver—a cruciverbalist), and she’s interested in helping other people. These are all wonderful qualities and I can’t wait to get to know Maggie more.

You’re too good for this hospital, Maggie. Save yourself!

Jane Villanueva (Gina Rodriguez) ⇒ Jane the Virgin

Ask anyone who’s seen Jane the Virgin and they will extol the wondrous and many virtues of Gina Rodriguez. You’ve probably seen the think pieces, her Golden Globes speech, and her (amazing) Emmy campaign poster by now, so you know that she and her character Jane are well loved across the TV fandom. Nearly everything about Jane makes me love her (even her faults, because they are things I relate to), but the things that I might love most include the fact that she’s a writer (who is still trying to figure out her writing path), she’s loving to her mother and grandmother, she’s funny, she shops at Target, and she fearless even in her insecurites. Even if Jane is unsure, she determines to find out the answer, to become sure. She does her research, but she also listens to her heart. She allows herself to cry and still know that she is strong. She’s a great model for young female characters. I am so glad we have Jane.

I hope we get more rapping Jane in Season 2.

Diane Johnson (Caila Marsai Martin) ⇒ blackish

Kids on TV are hard to cast. Sometimes they can be seen as annoying or too sweet or unrealistic. blackish’s Diane Johnson defies these challenges. She’s cute but she’s smart, she’s fierce but she’s relatable. She’s funny but not in an annoying way. I love that Diane speaks her mind. That she’s smart and knows it and doesn’t back down or apologize for it. I love that she realistically puts down her twin brother, but won’t let anyone else mess with him. I love that she scares Charlie. Also I love her dimples and her sass and her glasses and the way her hair is different in every episode and that once they even put her in a headscarf (because Lord knows she’d need to wear her headscarf in order to keep those barretts in place at night). Diane is shaping up to be a fantastic person and I am so excited to see her grow older.

Love how semi-neatly she’s making it rain. 

Emery & Evan Huang (Forrest Wheeler & Ian Chen) ⇒ Fresh Off the Boat

I think Evan and Emery Huang come as a package deal for me. They’re both adorable and it would be easy for them to be written similarly (especially in their contrast to Eddie and especially due to their closeness in age), but the show gives them distinct personalities that still have an opportunity to shape and grow.

Emery gets all the girls and is clearly sweet to them and his family.

Evan uses his cuteness to get away with everything, including his sharp tongue, and he’s well aware that that’s what he’s doing.

Both boys are smart and funny, the actors have excellent comedic timing. I can’t wait to see who they become as characters because they’re so young that they can still change and grow depending on the writing.

Who were some of your favorite new characters this TV season? 

Sometimes all you need to feel accomplishment is to choose a new blog theme

Look, things have changed here!

I’ve gone from this:

Screen Shot 2015-06-13 at 11.49.47 PM

I’ll miss my Holding the TV banner, but I’ll try to find a way to incorporate it into the new theme, it wasn’t working just yet, though.

to this!

Screen Shot 2015-06-14 at 2.19.10 AM Continue reading

Let’s process that ‘iZombie’ finale together

Me and Sulagna talked about the awesome iZombie finale over on Hello Giggles! I’m working on a highlights of the last few episodes I didn’t recap for The Nerds of Color soon!

Clicky click, okay? Let’s process that ‘iZombie’ finale together.

It’s a tie for this week’s ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP: Krystal and Helena

This week’s Orphan Black MVP(s) are up! I cheated and picked two because I can do that.

It's a tie for this week's 'Orphan Black' Clone Club MVP

Twins are ‘creepy.’ Turns out, you’re pretty creepy, Krystal.

This week’s Orphan Black didn’t make picking an MVP very easy. There were so many good scenes and moments that it’s almost impossible to keep track, but let’s try. We loved everything Scott related! We loved Felix for being so kind and for his American accent! We loved the lovely Mexican diner owner who didn’t rat Sarah and Helena out to (a lightly toasted and fried) Doctor Coady! Basically we had such a hard time picking an MVP that we cheated and picked two. Sorry not sorry.

Our MVPs are Krystal and Helena. Krystal, for her heart and her sacrifice, and Helena for her humor and her awkward facial expressions.

Click through to find out why! It’s a tie for this week’s ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP.

‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP: Alison Hendrix and her pink hats

Alison might be my favorite #CloneClub clone, so I was delighted when we got to see so much more of her on this week’s Orphan Black.

Congrats to Alison, our pick for this week’s Clone Club MVP. Why is this episode her episode? Because of the way she triumphs over all the obstacles that come her way (which are many).

We’ve been waiting for Alison to get her moment in the spotlight and for her story to connect just a little bit more to the rest of the overall plot, and this week that finally happened. Alison’s campaign for school trustee is usually so isolated from the other story lines, but thankfully it’s now a bit more connected to Felix and Cosima. Applause.

Read more at  ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP: Alison Hendrix and her pink hats

#ConStarClicks: Learn to Talk Like a TV Writer [GQ]

ConStar Clicks: Learn to Talk Like a TV Writer – GQ

True ConStar Clicks posts are returning in June (if all goes according to plan) but here’s a cool article I’ve been reading (and memorizing) about words TV writers often use in the process of putting an episode together. It seems to be mostly focusing on TV comedy jargon.

Some of my favorites from the piece:

  • Button – I prefer button to blow.
  • Chuffa
  • Cranberry Sauce
  • Hanging a Lantern – I learned this on TV Tropes. If you’ve read my About Me, you know I love me some TV Tropes.
  • Schmuck Bait

Click through to find out what they mean.

Series – This Week’s TV MVPs: Week 14 ~ Just About Write

ALSO KNOWN AS THAT TIME GRANT GUSTIN READ OUR MVPS.

First, he simply replied “thank you” to our MVP post on Twitter.

Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 10.45.35 PM

THEN, THE NEXT DAY, he quote tweeted it. As in more than 12 hours later. As in he kept it open, read it, and then decided to SHARE IT AGAIN. Screen Shot 2015-05-25 at 8.00.44 PM We’re all freaking out totally calm. NBD. The ladies over on Just About Write are all lovely and we’re totally fine. Calm. Maxin’ and chillaxin’ all cool. WE’RE TOTALLY FREAKING OUT. What a wonderful Monday. Grant Gustin is a kind hearted, excellently read (;-)) , real life superhero.

I’m done flailing. Here’s my bit on Grant/Nora below. Click through for more on Grant/Joe and Grant/Henry.

Connie’s MVP: Grant Gustin as Barry Allen (The Flash)

Why he’s the MVP: I’m gonna get personal for a second. My mother died when I was a baby. Too young, really, for me to even remember her. I’ve lived a perfectly lovely life with my grandmother and the other family members who made sure that I was loved and taken care of. But there’s always something in you that wonders what your life would be like if your parent was still around. Even if you think your life would be drastically different, there is always that what-if. Barry spends the episode grappling with the decision to make his what-if a reality.And while we all considered it ridiculous that he’d want to change things because we, as pop culture enthusiasts, know how time travel works (and how it goes wrong), we’re still devastated when Future Barry tells Our Barry not to help Nora and he watches her final moments. Grant handles this moment with all the care it deserves—not that there was little doubt. Everything about his moment in the past is precious. From his realization that he really did it and the moment of hesitation when his future self told him not to interfere to the way he hid in his room as Reverse Flash stabbed Nora in the heart and the moment he realizes this is his chance to say goodbye.

Grant floors me with his performance as he sits by Nora. He’s barely holding it together and he tries so hard to just be The Flash, but he’s never really been good at that. The Flash has always been Barry (compared to how, for the most part, The Arrow is not Oliver Queen). He takes off his hood and she knows before he even says anything: “You look just like my father.” The freedom he feels in this moment, even in his despair, is so apparent. He’s never been very secretive about his supposed secret identity, but to be able to tell his mother… that’s something he’s probably always wished she could know. That he was a something special.

“I got a second chance to come back here and… tell you that I’m okay.”

There’s this little thing Grant does, as Nora says goodbye, where he hardens his face, like he’s confidently letting her go. Then she exhales and he loses it once again, mourning both her life and the alternate timeline he doesn’t get to create. I love how The Flash showcases the emotional depth of superheroes without it being perceived as hokey (compare to the memes of Tobey Maguire crying as Spider-Man). That’s all Grant Gustin. I dare you to watch that scene without at least a prickle of a tear in your eye or some serious tugging at your heartstrings.

Read the rest here: Series – This Week’s TV MVPs: Week 14 ~ Just About Write. It’s Grant Gustin approved.

Orphan Black Clone Club MVP Week 5: Mrs S Takes the Stage

Also known as that time Maria Doyle Kennedy replied to the MVP post!

Over on HelloGiggles, Mrs. S was this week’s Clone Club MVP!

Felix and Mrs S

Siobhan Sadler (aka Mrs. S) is not someone who is easy to trust. Even the pieces of backstory revealed in this week’s “Scarred by Many Past Frustrations” episode had me side-eyeing her, wary of the information. We’ve been groomed by her foster daughter Sarah to distrust Mrs. S, and with cause. However, Mrs. S’s genuine concern for Sarah’s absence proves her own claim that she’s always looked out for Sarah’s (and Felix and Kira’s) best interests. I love her complexity.

I say a lot more about Mrs. S’s complexity and why she is a template for how we should take newest flawed mother Dr. Virginia Coady (the Castor Clones’ mother figure). Clicky click to read more: Mrs. S is our ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP of the week.

THEN, the HelloGiggles Twitter account shared the post on their social media (I think that means they like me!):

Then someone added Mrs. S actress Maria Doyle Kennedy to a tweet:

and she responded:

I’m not under the impression she read the article, but she acknowledged my post and knows that I thought she was fantastic last week!

EDIT: Three Weeks Later.

I’ve learned that the Official Orphan Black Facebook Page shared this post! Seems like once you start talking about Mrs S, everyone wants to share! Sad I only learned this three weeks later though…

Click through to see the original post

Click through to see the official Orphan Black FB page post

Recap Finale Fever (Castle & Arrow)

While I’ve been a bit behind, here are the recaps for the Castle season 7 finale and the last two episodes of Arrow Season 3!

Castle 7.23 Review: “Hollander’s Woods”

Castle ends an imbalanced season with a decent episode that could have served as the series finale had the stars not signed their contracts and the network had decided to cancel the series.

NOC Recaps Arrow 3.22: Don’t Stab Yourself In the Foot

NOC Recaps <i>Arrow</i>: Don’t Stab Yourself in the Foot

This episode is a bit of a mess and introduces a ridiculous plot twist that doesn’t serve the rest of the story.

NOC Recaps Arrow 3.23: The City’s Under Attack, Must Be May

NOC Recaps <i>Arrow</i>: City’s Under Attack, Must be MayThe Arrow season 3 finale finally gets us out of the Ra’s al Ghul arc that has been killing the shows cred with fans. Now that we’re moving on, hopefully season 4 will be better. That said, this episode splinters our main characters that could lead to interesting places come season 4. I’m also proud of an Aladdin joke and a Captain Planet joke that you should click-through to enjoy in its full glory.

Last week I did the #BGNPodcast with Cree Summer!

You’ve definitely watched one of these shows, so you’ve definitely heard her voice.

#BGNPodcast In Case You Missed It: Cree Summer

Last week, Black Girl Nerds did a special Thursday night podcast with none other than Cree Summer, from A Different World and maybe every 90s cartoon known to people in my age group. It was an honor to speak with her, she’s well known for her voices but even just her natural voice is soothing. She was really kind, felt connected to the Black Girl Nerds “tribe” and basically invites us to hang out with her in Hawaii at HawaiiCon (if anyone wants to book my airfare, I’d totally do it!).

I grew up on Cree’s voice, including: Atlantis the Lost Empire, Tiny Toon Adventures, Rugrats, and Batman Beyond. A personal favorite? Danny Phantom. Long lost cartoon that I wish I could rewatch? Histeria!. Then later, after college, I finally caught up on all of A Different World, which helps revitalize my desire to write something like that for television. Cree’s career was unconsciously an influence for me without me even knowing she was involved in those projects.

Take a listen to hear her “pirate mouth,” advice to aspiring voice actors, and enticing descriptions of what it’s like at HawaiiCon (take me awayyyy!).

Last Week in Recaps (Castle & iZombie x2); plus a look at Netflix’s Sense8

It’s almost the end of the TV season, and thus the end of my mad dash for recap updates here on the blog. Here are the recaps I did last week, for Castle and iZombie. Still working on that Arrow recap and this week’s Castle season finale. Also, I took a look at the trailer for Sense8, the new Netflix series coming to Netflix this June directed by the Wachowski siblings (you know, The Matrix). Click on through!

Castle 7.22 Review: Dead From New York

CastleThe penultimate Castle of the season dealt with the death of late night comedy mogul Sid Ross, a Lorne Michaels proxy. With all the shots taken at SNL in the episode, it makes me wonder if there’s a writer who was jilted by the show at some time in their career. While it starts off as a fun episode, it takes a few kind of unnecessary turns before turning into a minute long Carly Rae Jepsen show (a desperate attempt for younger viewers?). Still a fun episode.

NOC Recaps iZombie: Baby Mama Brain Drama

NOC Recaps <i>iZombie</i>: Baby Mama Brain DramaiZombie is continuing to win me over. Though the cases are fairly uninteresting, I love the characters and the way they weave Liv’s lessons with the power of the week, even if she usually regresses afterwards.

NOC Recaps iZombie: Shock Jock

NOC Recaps <i>iZombie</i>: Shock JockRAVI NOOO! That was my main concern as I ended this week’s iZombie. That and: hey if Ravi becomes a zombie, maybe we’ll find out if zombies of color turn pale and have to do some absurdly unreal tanning in order to remain their beautiful brown selves.

Netflix’s Sense8 Trailer

I wrote about the trailer for Netflix’s Sense8, from the producers of the Matrix and Babylon 5 for HelloGiggles. They sent me the trailer and it looks really cool! Hopefully it pulls its mystery threads together in a way that a lot of shows post-Lost (and including Lost) never did.

‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP Week 4: Helena and her teeth of steel

An angel of death is still an angel.

We were only about 10 minutes into this week’s Orphan Black episode and I already knew who the Clone Club MVP was going to be. While Sarah patches up Mark, Alison confronts an old boyfriend, and Cosima contemplates finding a new girlfriend, Helena is all alone with her imaginary scorpion and yet seems to have more control over her situation than any of the others.

Click through to read more of why I chose Helena this week. And check the previous MVPs for this season of Orphan Black so far over on HelloGiggles.

‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP of the Week: Art; plus some thoughts on Beth Childs

This week’s Orphan Black Clone Club MVP was hard to pin down. When I started this series, I wanted to just focus on our Leda clones, our Tatiana Maslanys. But this season has expanded its storytelling past the ladies on to an ever-growing cast of characters spread out across this world, so it’s only fair that the MVP nominations extend to the entire cast. This week’s MVP was hard to choose—Gracie almost made the cut—but Art is truly one of Clone Club’s Most Valuable Players.

This week on Orphan Black, Art helps Sarah track down one of Johannsen’s (Gracie’s father who impregnated her and Helena) former allies, who might have information on the Castor and Leda originals.

Read more: ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP of the Week: Art.

And can I just say how interesting it is that they’re still including Beth in the story? She died three seasons ago and her presence is still felt throughout Clone Club. I would love a flashback episode or series of scenes that explore her life before she killed Maggie Chen, showing her partnership with Art. What drew him to her? Did she love him back? What did her early relationship with Cosima and Alison look like. And what were her final hours like, the decision to kill herself must have taken a lot, she already knew Helena was coming after them. Was she heading her off at the pass or was that not even in her mind? Ponder Beth with me and let’s appreciate Detective Arthur Bell.

Recap Catch Up (Arrow and iZombie); plus Some TV Hiatus Plans

The week before last was my birthday (ahh!) and I was working the final week of my time at the Tribeca Film Festival, so I had to spend last week catching up on writing recaps. I managed to do 3/4 (this week’s iZombie is coming soon-ish) and so here they are! Over hiatus, I’ll be working on having more original content for the blog, some binge watch TV thoughts (maybe some Daredevil), hopefully more consistent ConStar Clicks, and more adventures in speccing. Until then, recap city it is!

NOC Recaps iZombie: Death by Birthday CardNOC Recaps <i>iZombie</i>: Death by Birthday Card

iZombie is slowing coming into it’s own. Liv eats her grossest brain yet and the show taps into a good murder weapon but a bit of a convoluted plot. But the characters are still great with strong, quippy dialogue. I love Ravi.

NOC Recaps Arrow: The Weight of ExpectationNOC Recaps <i>Arrow</i>: The Weight of Expectation

Arrow suffers growing pains in it’s most recent two episodes. Thea’s resurrection episode left me conflicted, concerned with the plotting of the episode, but accepting what the writers intended for the story, even if I didn’t buy the execution. However…

 NOC Recaps Arrow: Darth Oliver’s Inferno

NOC Recaps <i>Arrow</i>: Darth Oliver’s Inferno

Oliver’s first “evil” League of Assassins episode, while strong with potential and great character interactions, swerved into uncharted territory that leaves a sour taste in my mouth as we ramp towards the finale. But I think this is my favorite recap because I reference smart hoity-toity literary works, the Bible, and Aladdin.

And as always, check my blogger friend Jenn’s site Just About Write for my weekly TV MVP choices.

Castle 7.21 Review: “In Plane Sight”

This week’s Castle had all eyes in the sky as Castle solved a mystery on his way to London. After last week’s jumble of an episode, it was refreshing to get a solid plot with great suspense and well used supporting characters. Though I will add in that Castle’s seeming hesitance about solving the crime in the air and possibly preventing a terrorist attack would be easier if he KNEW WHAT HE DID FOR TWO MONTHS. Still not over the ridiculousness that if Castle saved the world, that he would choose to forget. But anyway, check the recap:

As if we didn’t already know, Castle has the Angela Lansbury curse, where murder follows him everywhere he goes. On this week’s episode of Castle, he cashed in his frequent murder miles and solved a case in the sky.

Castle and Alexis are on a trip to London (on a known to be deadly Oceanic Air… no wonder they come across trouble), where Castle will be speaking at the Sherlock Holmes Society. He’s a bit upset that Alexis won’t come with him, but soon they have other concerns as the air marshal is found dead in the cargo hold. The pilot thinks Castle’s assistance is necessary: “You’re the closest thing to law enforcement we have on this plane.” “Which itself is cause for concern.”

Read more: Castle Season 7 Episode 21 Review: “In Plane Sight”.

Orphan Black Clone Club MVP Week 2: Seth

Week Two of Clone Club MVP is up on Hello Giggles! This has been a fun way to recap the episode. This week, I wasn’t expecting to pick the male clones… I wanted to focus on the girls. But they successfully drew me in to the Project Castor clones, so I had to give them the MVP for that. Click through to read more!

Each week, we’re recapping Orphan Black by choosing a Clone Club MVP. See past recaps here

This week’s story was once again very Sarah driven, but with the new Project Castor clones given more spotlight and personality. We saw four of our boy clone brothers: Seth (mustache) and Rudy (scar), Mark (who ran off with pregnant Grace), and the unnamed military brother who waterboarded Helena. I give Seth the Most Valuable Clone award for this week. May he rest in peace.

Read More: ‘Orphan Black’ Clone Club MVP of the Week: It’s Seth, hands down.

Castle 7.20 Review: “Sleeper”: A Disappointing Reveal

Castle Season 7 Disappearance Thailand

I must say: I’ve never been so disappointed with a plot resolution as I was with the reveal of (parts) of the Castle Disappearance arc. There was so much lead up, and so little focus on a mystery for Castle’s personal life, that the reveal had to be a good one. What could possibly have led Castle to disappear on his wedding day for two months and choose to not remember it? It seems we got an answer for why he was gone for about the span of a week, maybe? And it was not a satisfying answer. It was rushed, jumbled, confused, and had weak links stretching one plot introduced a few months earlier to the hastily added bits of story introduced in this episode.

Typically, Castle is great at reveals. The Johanna Beckett mystery had a lot of twists and turns and while some felt weaker than others or caused more stretches of the imagination, it still made a satisfying ride. So far, this disappearance story makes very little sense. Click through to my TVOvermind review to see what drove me to be so disappointed.

Hint: it has a lot to do with Castle’s ability to keep a secret.

This week’s episode of Castle finally wraps up the Castle disappearance arc, which has been in play since he missed his wedding ceremony in the season six finale. Going into the episode, I felt trepidation; the conclusion to this story must be compelling to be drawn out an entire season but only a handful of episodes. Even the characters seemed determine to put it behind them, decreasing my interest in the mystery. All-in-all, this season has been one of tying up loose ends (due to the show’s fate for season eight still up in the air), so it’s hard to think the show will need another season after this one; with this story, the Caskett romance settled, and Beckett’s mother’s killer caught, there’s not much left to explore. If the show does go on for one more season, I forsee it being its last. But let’s jump into this week’s episode.

As I said, the explanation behind Castle’s disappearance had a lot riding on it and I’m not sure I bought the execution.

Read more: Castle Season 7 Episode 20 Review: “Sleeper”.

New Blog Series! Clone Club MVP: Orphan Black

ConStar Hello giggles ProileI started a new series on a new (for me) blog this week! My dear IRL and Twitter friend Sulagna connected me with the positive people with Hello Giggles!

For my first post/series, I wanted to talk about the clones of Orphan Black! We focus on the show as a whole or the amazing Tatiana Maslany a lot, and each clone gets tons of cosplay and fandom faves love, but I wanted to talk about each clone in each episode of season 3. So I started Clone Club MVP (or: #mostvaluableclone)!

I’m really excited to do something different and to do a different form of a Orphan Black recap. Those are plentiful across the internet. But each character brings something new to the show each week (as performed by Tatiana), so I wanted to praise one clone a week and talk about the each episode through that lens. So check out my first post on Orphan Black! I’ll have subsequent posts up on Sundays/Mondays now that I’ve been getting the hang of how posting works on HG.

Check it out and let’s discuss, #CloneClub!

Clone Club MVP: Orphan Black “The Weight of This Combination”