chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
This is a decent hour of television, but I’ve been struggling with this episode ever since it aired. I think too much. :P I remember reading Sean T Collins’s review in “The Rolling Stone,” where he lamented a certain subplot that went into Walking Dead territory and seemed to imply that any attempt at peace is a sham; war is the only way to go.

That subplot, by the way, includes another surprise return character, so there’s issues there! :P

The more I think about it, the more we really can’t ignore warmongering nature of Game of Thrones, or in this episode at the very least. Jon and Sansa, with the able help of Davos, go on their campaign to rally the north to their cause; no sitting on the sidelines, guys, you gotta fight this fight. Arya’s attempts for a clean break from the Faceless Men won’t be that easy, even on the show. :P The Blackfish goes on to insist that even though the War of the Five Kings is long done, he won’t lay down his sword. Speaking of life and death, Theon has to make a choice in the shadow of the civil war brewing between his uncle and his sister. Only in King’s Landing are the politics complicated enough that sometimes one can make choices to avoid antagonism…at least in part.

Maybe this is what happens when we don’t see Tyrion for two episodes; we forget that there might be ways to avoid war. Of course, we haven’t seen the aftermath of his decisions in Meereen either. I’d better zip my lips; there’s enough to talk about in this episode without addressing future ones!

Episode summary and spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
This episode, like the last one, is also named for the final scene, where—mild spoilers—Daenerys gives a motivational speech to her Dothraki. :P Usually khals choose three bloodriders, aka the blood of my blood.

Family and loyalty are called into question a lot during this hour. Jaime and the Tyrells join forces to save Margaery and Loras, and take down the faith militant once and for all. Arya has to decide whether or not she’s going to poison Lady Crane,as per Faceless demands. Sam’s homecoming is fraught with all sorts of unresolved tension. We visit the Twins, and get a recap on what’s been going on with House Frey, those lovely people. :P And Bran also meets up with someone who’s been gone for a very long time. Slipping pretty damn close to spoilers here!

Here’s the big shocker—no Tyrion! :0 Can’t recall any other episode where he hasn’t been around, at least briefly. Guess it shows just how much story they have to fit into this season.

Episode Summary and Spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
If I thought the beginning of the last episode would destroy my fragile emotions, the end of this one came quite close to mounting a second attack. Anyone who has watched this hour knows just what this episode was named for (probably the biggest, most shocking reveal for we book fans), but in avoiding specific spoilers, I thought I’d talk a little bit about theme. Characters in this episode have a “door” to go through, choices to make. Sansa, reunited with Littlefinger, ponders her next political moves. Bran’s desire to gain knowledge on his own terms certainly has consequences. The Kingsmoot comes, and Theon either has to throw his weight behind his sister or make his own claim. Daenerys has to decide what to do with the twice-banished Jorah; Tyrion invites a controversial ally to spread his propaganda. And Arya—who is supposed to be no one—is confronted with the assignment to assassinate a decent person.

In lighter terms, some questions this episode ponders is—again, how the hell does Littlefinger move across Westeros so fast? Where will Euron find trees to fell for ships when he lives on an inhospitable rock? And who took the parental controls off of Bran’s remote control? :P

Regarding Sansa again, I know the showrunners want to focus on the fact that she’s still very much Littlefinger’s student. But that speech she gave about what it felt like to be sexually violated—I think that’s the most honest thing I’ve heard about rape on television. Considering the huge controversy of showing the rape last season, this seems to end it on a good note. What happened to Sansa turned out to be far more than just shock value.

Episode summary and spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
A whole lot happened this episode, including a few walks through proverbial graveyards as the title suggests, being reborn into something new. But hands down, there’s no scene that moves me more than the family reunion at the beginning. Still got me a little feklempt during the re-watch.

This is also very much an episode about sisters—three sisters who act as the psychological support for their flailing brothers. Elsewhere, Cersei finally wins a victory and Dany …oh Dany. It’s a final scene that some fans might first find empowering, then disappointing. My own thoughts remain quite muddled. I respect what the showrunners were trying to do, but sometimes it’s a lot easier to consider the human moments, not the cosmic moments.

Which brings me back to that first scene…I thought for sure after the last episode, they were setting us up for yet another “just missed the reunion” scenario. But this wasn’t an episode for tiptoeing around story development—it was time to light things on fire. :P

Episode summary and spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
Lots of retribution, or at least moving past old wrongs, in this episode. Even the dead are held accountable and I don’t mean the wights! I mean GoT's first big character, starring in a set piece that a segment of book fandom was surely drooling to see. Kind of ended prematurely, but yanno, we have to save some of the big reveals until later in the season. :P

No Sansa this episode, alas, but she was featured in the “previously on” segment where she’s talking with Littlefinger about something pertinent last season. Always staying relevant, girl! :D Meanwhile, as much of the fandom cheered for the end of a much maligned “villain,” I found someone even more worthy to despise. Grr. Thank goodness for often brutal deaths on this show. Sheesh, I should reign it in, shouldn’t I! Oy.

Episode Summary and Spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
If I remember correctly, this was a little bit of a frustrating episode for fans. At least it has all of the attributes of a so-called frustrating episode, with minimal action and a much-anticipated development dragging on until the very end. I mean, when Saturday Night Live is gonna make fun of that scene in a fully fledged script, then. :P Other than that, the most “plotty” developments of this episode happened to people whom most would consider to be side characters. Otherwise, this hour has the feel of the storylines getting their ducks in a row.

I tend to enjoy these relationship-heavy episodes. Game of Thrones does character dialogue so well. There’s a compelling scene between Jaime and the High Sparrow, Tommen and Cersei, and Brienne and Sansa. And so many more, too! One of the big themes of this episode, of course, is that of “home”—people wanting to return somewhere or find somewhere that is comforting and safe. Regrets abound, and crises of faith. I wrote a ridiculously long personal rambling review of this when it first aired. Will try to keep it cleaner now.

But td;lr—the ending certainly brings a major storyline back on track and officially moves us past the final image in the published books. I find most of the other stuff more interesting.

Episode Summary and Spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
Hello, hello! It may be later in the year than ever before, but we are ten weeks out from the start of season seven, so I’m back to recap season six! Winter is coming…or at least it was meant to come during the production schedule. :P

I’ll also be changing the content of my reviews slightly again. We’re predominately in uncharted waters here (uncharted by the published ASOIAF books, I mean,) so instead of just doing a “changes from page to screen” section, I’ll be highlighting (possible) reveals! Remember, not all of the show will map to canon, but we should be able to find some Easter eggs.

Speaking of reveals, this episode is named for one—the red woman! I’ll get to the specific shocker under the cut, but Mel isn’t doing too well in this episode, is she? In pretty quick order she lost two savior figures—first Stannis, now Jon. Difficult to keep faith in your faith that way.

Most of the women seem to be on a down note—except for the Dornish, but they suck on the show. :P Sansa is on the run from a tyrant. Daenerys and Arya have both suffered falls from grace—from conqueror queen to slave, and from assassin-in-training to blind beggar. And Cersei’s slow downfall from last season is only bound to get worse. Poor Margaery remains in chains.

The men are suffering, too—even the Dornish—but I think it’s fair to say, in this, an episode that’s named for a woman, that female autonomy or lack thereof, is a theme this season. Now I’ll shush before I give anything inappropriate away. :P

Episode Summary and Spoilers )
chavalah: Fandom: ASOIAF (Sansa: Life is Not a Song)
[personal profile] chavalah
I am a relatively new presence in this fandom. “Game of Thrones,” the award-winning HBO drama, is based on a series of fantasy books (A Song of Ice and Fire) by George R. R. Martin. Though these volumes started getting published in the 1990s I, along with scores of other scifi/fantasy fans, got sucked in when it hit the small screen.

The show is known for its sweeping landscapes, compelling exposition, teasing magic, beautiful artistry, and a score of characters one better not fall in love with because bad things are near certain to happen to them. (My weak point is the Stark family. The poor, abused Stark family. :(( ) Loosely based on the Wars of the Roses, the series chronicles the political power-plays in a Medieval-based fantasy kingdom. Magic exists on the periphery, but is ever-so-slowly creeping into the main story.

“Game of Thrones” and its creators David Benoiff and D.B. Weiss are considered successful, both by the author who says they’re holding true to the source material (personally I'd say they're far from perfect, but they do cover some good stuff,) and their television and motion picture peers who have lauded their work and offered several award nominations and wins in acting, directing, writing, and much more. This fame is certainly not ill deserved, but like with “Harry Potter” and other adaptations, I would urge all tv fans to try the books, just to see how deep the rabbit hole goes in terms of deep character development and shocking plot twists. Or, at the very least, to avoid throwing large objects while screaming when certain events come to pass on the small screen. :-“ Note: my recaps will contain spoilers for both the tv adaptation and the books.

Though still in production, hopefully for many more years to come, “Game of Thrones” is what inspired me to open this community in the first place. In 2011 I wrote ten-page reviews of almost every episode, and with a little editing I am thrilled to show them off as HBO starts airing reruns. I hope you enjoy them, and remember, Winter is Coming!

Season One )

Season Two )

Season Three )

Season Four )

Season Five )

Season Six )
chavalah: Fandom: Xena (Xena/Gabrielle: OTP Pride!)
[personal profile] chavalah
In all honesty, I can’t remember when I started officially watching “Xena.” The sixth season is the only one I watched in real time. Seasons one-four I mostly got in syndicated reruns on The Sci Fi Channel. Season Five will largely be as new for me as for any newb! ;)

“Xena” was a spinoff born from a minor guest appearance by Lucy Lawless in “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys.” Occasionally the two shows, both loosely set in ancient Greece, had joint episodes and plotlines, but “Xena” was more than capable of standing alone. The episodic atmosphere, particularly in the beginning, was very cheesy—sort of a slapstick comedy for martial arts, modern-life parodies, and a historical timeline that completely skewed into an alternate universe with how many important events, across centuries and continents, “Xena” played a part in. The show also heralded in the use of “musical episodes,” from “The Bitter Suite” in 1998 to “Lyre, Lyre, Hearts on Fire” a year later.

But beneath the cheese was a very compelling story—about a guilt-ridden warlord seeking redemption, her perky, blond sidekick on the brink of adulthood, and the life-altering bond that they create together. “Xena” was incredibly innovative in how it portrayed female issues—removing all men to secondary roles, it achieved what few other series have been able to, concerning the growth and relationships between women. As the show moved along, Xena (Lucy Lawless) and Gabrielle’s (Renee O’Connor) “friendship” was increasingly scrutinized in a sexual content, making the show iconic in lesbian and perhaps feminist circles. This “subtext” was increasingly alluded to in later seasons, and culminated in Xena and Gabrielle becoming bondafide “soul mates.” You can easily see from my icon where I stand on this issue. :P

Whatever you might think of Xena and Gabrielle’s life after dark, their true strength comes in the journey they take together—one character tainted by darkness, the other innocent and light—and the ways they help each other find a middle ground. Along the way they meet a cast of kooky and unforgettable characters—from the driven God of War Ares (Kevin Smith), vengeful Callisto (Hudson Leick), Amazon queen Ephiny (Danielle Cormack), ambitious Caesar (Karl Urban), and clumsy, lovable Joxer the Mighty (Ted Raimi) to name a very few. These folks help shape the story…and quite often, add to the laughs! :P

So I hope you come along with me, and enjoy the exploits of the warrior princess and the battling bard in these recaps. For more “Xena” news and fandom, you might want to check out FemPop's episode reviews or XenaCast, which was produced by [livejournal.com profile] lavender_jane.

Season One )

Season Two )

Season Three )
chavalah: Fandom: Farscape (Chiana: Sexy Pride!)
[personal profile] chavalah
I’ve been a fan of this show since the very beginning. I remember, one autumn night in 1999, turning on the tv to see what The Sci Fi Channel was airing (cos that’s just the kind of person I was in high school. :P) It was the night of “Premiere” and I was hooked. Farscape’s beginning chronicles astronaut John Cricthon (Ben Browder) getting “shot out” of a wormhole during a routine mission and coming face-to-face with a complex, multi-species alien society that is as bewildered by his existence as he is by theirs.

I distinctly remember getting swept into the sense of extreme discomfort as John accidentally kills a pilot during a space battle he stumbles in on, and then his module is brought aboard the vast, living ship Moya, who will become his home throughout the rest of the series. Partly due to the makeup jobs and partly due to incredible acting by D’argo (Anthony Simcoe) and Zhaan (Virginia Hey) and their angry bearing-down on hapless John, this world was just scary. I never had any problem accepting the “puppets” (more like animatronics) Rygel and Pilot either; to me, in the beginning, this made them even more alien and appropriately inaccessible. But the biggest feat was perhaps between John and Officer Aeryn Sun (Claudia Black,) because though she looked human she was not, and she pulled off the amazing feat of appearing alien as well (largely by kicking John’s ass. :P)

And finally, a huge shoutout to Ben Browder, our human protagonist, who made this world believable through his hapless reactions and famed “Crictonisms,” American cultural sayings that helped bind him to his new reality.

In all honesty, I probably didn’t get hooked on Farscape until second season. Those of you familiar with the show might recognize that Chiana (Gigi Edgley, first introduced in Episode 1.15 “Durka Returns”) is my favorite character. :P For me and several other fans, she was the missing piece that made the Moya crew feel whole. But I watched diligently from the start and was rewarded with an incredible journey, a journey of adventures, growth, nasty villains and surprising friends, love and family. I hope, as John Crichton says in the title sequence, you will use these recaps to “share the wonders I’ve seen.”

…this recap was inspired in large part by the ScapeCast’s new weekly segment, Scaper Chronicles. Check them out in coming weeks as they bring together veteran and newbie fans to discuss the series! For the J/A shippers out there, check out screen caps from all episodes on [livejournal.com profile] johnaeryn_daily.

Season One )

Season Two )

Season Three )
chavalah: Fandom: Star Wars EU (Jaina: Fandom Pride!)
[personal profile] chavalah
Welcome! For viewing efficiency, all shows that are recapped on this site will be cataloged here. Here is a set of guidelines I will adhere to in this community:

1) An "intro" page to discuss personal connection to the show and/or fandom
2) Links to all recaps available through the "intro" page
3) All posts about the particular show/fandom tagged accordingly

Enjoy!

Shows Chronicled on [community profile] scifi_rewatch

Farscape

Game of Thrones

Xena: Warrior Princess
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
This episode definitely feels a little lackluster in comparison to some recent ones. “The rift” is essentially over, and although the guest stars aren’t horrible, none, except for Ted Raimi, of course, live up to some recent ones. The hour pays homage to the 1973 heist movie, “The Sting,” where two con artists make a “play” to take the “mark’s” money. That sentence probably tells you all you need to know about my general interest in such a premise. :P All I can really think about is the George Clooney Oceans movies, which get stale after repeat viewings. But at least all the components to their caper ultimately made sense. :/

“Xena” brings some kookiness to the premise, but also a surprising tint of violence, too. The uber bad guys aren’t particularly well developed, but then there’s an alliance that our warrior princess makes with two lesser con men, which is slightly more intriguing. But I’m ambivalent over all. This episode doesn’t really do it for me.

And is it just me, or did the title of this episode just scream “Autolycus”? Though we’ve probably already done the episode of him in a thieving situation that is sorta similar to this, hee. Still, I think his presence would have made the heists more enjoyable. Definitely would have pRaferred seeing Xena interact with friends vs with relative nobodies. Alas.

Summary is here, courtesy of whoosh.org.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
Boy, does this episode bring the feels. :/ I listened to an episode of the Scaper Chronicles where most of the podcasters described themselves as relatively unemotional in countenance, but even they had the mushy feels by the end of the hour.

Perhaps the ultimate conclusion feels inevitable on a wholly rational, show objective level. But much like Rygel is no longer a puppet to “Farscape” fans, these characters, their motivations, drives and feels, are also real. And the big picture chess board machinations don’t mean nearly as much as identifying with the pieces.

Back to the Scaper Chronicles, one of the podcasters actually brought up the Daedalus and Icarus mythological inspiration this time. And she mentioned things that hadn’t even crossed my mind—it’s stuff too spoilery to tell you above the cut, too. :P I will say this—I think I’ve always interpreted “abides” to mean something more agreeable than it actually is. According to the Meriam Webster dictionary, the simple definition of to abide means to accept or bear something or someone unpleasant, so hmmm.

It’s also worth noting that John, who is definitely Icarus, flies a bit too close to a star here. :P But I’m already divulging relative spoilers! Anywho, the rest of the episode is a treat as well, from Furlow’s intriguing characterization to Crais and Stark’s b plot, to the damnably fine acting of Claudia Black. That’s no spoiler, hee.

Episode summary is here, courtesy of the John and Aeryn Fansite.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
This is one of those episodes that I couldn’t automatically remember, just given the title, but by the time that our major guest star appeared on stage, slinging oatmeal at Gabrielle in a bar, I was groaning. “Not this brat.” I remembered her as an ill-advised decision on behalf of the “Xenaverse,” an annoying character who didn’t even have the decency to go away after just one episode. Not annoying in the way that Joxer is annoying (spoken as a “team Joxer” fan over here, who appreciates Ted Raimi’s stylings) but annoying in the way that Gabrielle sums it up best to Xena, who identified with the kid—“I knew you were evil, but you were obnoxious, too?” :P

But through the course of actually watching through the 45 minutes again, I realized that actress, Shiri Appleby, was an inspired choice. She made Tara funny, and then have hidden depths when the script demanded it. The girl had talent—unlike whoever played another guest star, the wooden Micah, I’m sorry to say. Sometimes, even those who play obnoxious characters can remind you that acting is an art.

The episode also delves into other interesting topics, like the meaning of forgiveness and ritual items vs personal resolve when it comes to faith. It doesn’t have the historical undertones of the last hour, or quite the gravitas of other previous ones, but the last scene is surprisingly thoughtful, and less of a tidy wrap up than usual.

Summary is here, courtesy of whoosh.org.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
This has the feel of a strong, transitioning episode. Without even going into any of the plot, let’s look at it’s placement in the series. The retrieval squad, which was the big reason why half of the Moya crew split off onto Talyn anyway, was destroyed back in “Relativity.” Skipping past the Moya episodes, the Talyn crew gets a little bit of a kooky respite from drama with their last hour, “Meltdown.” Now it’s time to reunite with the Moya guys. It wouldn’t do to simply have everyone…reunite without a significant development to drive the latter third of the season.

If you need any more hints about the significance of this episode, well, it’s part one of two. :P Big story ideas take more time than usual. Also, like most “Farscape” multi-parts, it has a complicated name. The duology has its own title, “Infinite Possibilities.” This refers to one of the biggest themes of the show, about how the variety of choices in life and science can lead to different realities. Our biggest indicator of that right now is that we have two John Chrichtons on two different paths—Moya John is driving his crew mates to distraction and Talyn John is canoodling with Aeryn. :P Also, the choices we make, say back in season one, might have unforeseen consequences down the line, heh.

And then there’s part one’s title, “Daedalus demands.” Daedalus is a man from ancient Greek mythology. He is imprisoned in a labyrinth and he makes some wings out of wax to fly home. He “demands,” in a manner of speaking, to his son that when he puts on his wings, he doesn’t fly too close to the sun. Here’s how I see this metaphor, which is played out, to be slightly spoilery, by a returning character in the episode. The Ancients gave John the wormhole knowledge, aka wings, that he might need to ultimately return home. But they locked it up so that John would have to slowly tease it out, rather than moving too quickly and “flying too close to the sun.” Wormhole knowledge be dangerous, yo. This is also our first episode where we talk about them as more than just transport—they can be weapons! :0

I’m pretty sure, when this episode first aired, that I was out of town this week. Made tuning in for part two the next week a bit confusing, hee.

Episode summary is here, courtesy of the John and Aeryn Fansite.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
Slowly getting back to normal, post-Rift, where Xena and Gabrielle take time to relax, and—you know, defeat the entire Persian army. :P To be fair, I don’t think that was meant to be the entire Persian army, hee. And more to the point, the real crux of the episode revolved around some soul searching amongst the women after Gabrielle got hit with a poisoned dart. Guess this was her week to brave dying from poison. ;) But the dialogue between our two leads, both light-hearted and more serious, really carries this hour.

The history is more fiction than reality, as we jump from the time of Julius Caesar back to the second or third Persian Wars in Greece. Whoosh.org points out how different events from this episode came from different wars. Either way, we’re talking a couple hundred years back, BCE. There’s also a lot of goofs this episode, as catalogued by whoosh and the wiki.

At the same time, it has a lot of heart. It featured one of the biggest action sequences on the show, so you can’t say they didn’t try to make it at least somewhat convincing. And the strength of the Xena/Gabrielle scenes, most likely, catapulted this hour into one of the seventeen that fans selected to be included in the 10th anniversary collection. After a master showing like “The Bitter Suite,” this ain’t half bad.

Summary is here, courtesy of whoosh.org.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
It’s taken me awhile to get to this episode, and I think that part of the problem has to do with how much my opinion of it has abruptly changed. I can’t even claim credit for my change of heart; it was totally the wonderful ladies of the Scaper Chronicles. They pointed out the casual use of sexual assault, stuff that I just glazed over as a teen. And sheesh, it’s not like I didn’t have a brain back then; I totally remember being squicked out by John shoving Chiana against a wall and slut shaming her before a violent cold clock during “Crackers Don’t Matter.” He put on a similar act with her in this episode, but I think I was blocked by my shipper feels. /shame

I also think that this episode was violently disjointed. Now, it reminds me of the Jaime/Cersei sex scene in “Game of Thrones” season four, where varying parties had varying ideas about whether it was consensual or not, so it looked like a big mess on screen. This entire episode is basically the big mess on screen. Because apparently, according to the Scaper Chronicles, it was supposed to be more serious at first, but then someone high up didn’t like it, so they filmed the “epilogue” bit with John and Pilot, and gave the rest of the episode basically a “Hangover” feel. Which, to be fair, was funny (in a stupid way) on its own. But juxtapose those scenes in with the darker stuff, and…yeah, not so much.

Episode summary is here, courtesy of the John and Aeryn Fansite.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
Can’t quite believe how long I’ve put off recapping this episode. It’s not my favorite, but it’s certainly up there. Beyond that, it’s such a unique hour, yanno with the whole kooky musical world aspect, and it took twice as long to create as the standard “Xena” fare. One of the top three most expensive episodes, according to whoosh.org! And one of 17 chosen by fans to be included in the “Xena: Warrior Princess 10th Anniversary Collection,” according to the wiki.

Ostensibly this episode heals “the rift” between Xena and Gabrielle, though there are some differing opinions about all of that. Certainly the musical story aspect of this hour helped tie serious plotlines up more neatly than is the usual. I’ve seen this episode referred to as both an “opera” and a “rock opera.” I just love that it’s ultimately about the complicated relationship between two women who love each other, though there is a scintillating subplot that perhaps makes a case for Xena/Ares (never!) :P

First airing in February 1998, this is the premiere musical episode that defined the future for science fiction and fantasy shows. Eat your heart out, “Buffy.”

Summary is here, courtesy of whoosh.org.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
I have vague memories of being out of town or something when first this episode aired. I think I read the synopsis, or a detailed review, first, and I remember being disappointed in how much Sierjna looked like Zhaan. It was like a cop out, saying that this one-off alien guest star (meaning no disrespect to Susan Lyons) could have a significant bearing on Stark’s vanquished relationship with his soulmate—or worse, be a replacement.

I also don’t remember being head over heels for the J/A PDA. :P I mean, I’m a shipper in the way that shipping J/A is like breathing on this show, but I didn’t need to see all the details. That saxophone was relentless, man.

The Scaper Chronicles, of course, like the J/A shippiness, but don’t like what they call the “framing story.” (Great terminology.) On first glance, it does sort of feel like that, in the midst of a lot of heady story arcs in this season alone, the writers decided to take a little break. :P They assumed that the J/A action would carry us along just fine for this hour.

And upon repeat watchings, I really have to give my props to Ben and Claudia, both of whom were certainly having fun. But even moreso to the writers for all of that sexual innuendo…which finally got a payoff. :D Frell, I can’t even type that without sounding dirty, hee.

But perhaps most poignantly, and this is a new development for yours truly, there is an intriguing mythological/fairy tale construct going on here. Maybe not enough to redeem the entire episode to the echelons of other recent ones, but intriguing nonetheless. I look forward to dissecting all of this under the cut.

Episode summary is here, courtesy of the John and Aeryn Fansite.

Spoilery thoughts )
[identity profile] chavalah.livejournal.com
Welcome back to “the Rift.” Bigtime drama for our two girls. I’m embarrassed to say that it took until I watched the commentary to realize the obvious—this is the midpoint of the season. Hope’s birth (and some other iffy developments) happened near the beginning, inter-dispersed with some goofy, non-storyline stuff, and now we’ve reached the lowest point. The back half of the season is all about how Xena and Gabrielle deal with all of this, but no more spoilers! *innocent, musical whistling*

I’m also back to feeling a sort of “rift” with some of the fandom. I remember referencing this back in the first episodes featuring Hope. Who is to blame for what happened here? More importantly, did Hope’s journey have to turn out this way? I suppose I’m feeling a little aggravated—in the last episode, we went to great, if goofy lengths, to have Gabrielle question her one dimensional concept of goodness. But isn’t Xena’s concept of evil similarly one dimensional and bullheaded? I feel like if Gabrielle is challenged on her beliefs, then Xena should, too—particularly because Xena’s beliefs are much more fatalistic. Is that the ultimate message of this show, or is it redemption? Suffice to say…I think I’m coming down with a strong opinion about the Hope conundrum. It’s not the way that the story ultimately goes, but it could have gone that way. Man, I kind of wish I were a teen again, where I was drooling over the drama, but not really grappling with it. :P

Great episode, by and by. The acting carried the show, and we got to see some awesome old (and new) faces.

Summary is here, courtesy of whoosh.org.

Spoilery thoughts )

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SciFi Rewatch: Recapping Favorite Old Time Shows

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