The Katrina Problem

Sleepy Hollow hasn’t been at the top of its season 1 game for a while, and that has been pretty obvious for many fans of the show, who have either stopped watching– as shown by the huge drop in ratings compared to last season and the fact that it hasn’t been renewed as opposed to other shows in the FOX schedule– or have taken it to social media to complain to the writers and executive producers of the show. 

Whether you find this fair or not, most of the complaints have been reasonable. The erasure of characters of color to highlight white characters that has been pointed out not just by the viewers but by the critics is real and the fact that some characters who don’t work have been given more screentime than one of the main characters (Abbie) is undeniable.* 

Obvious diversity problems aside, many complaints do come together in one name: Katrina.

Yesterday, Katia Winter, who plays Katrina herself, posted this on twitter.

It honestly made me a little sad. Now, what can you do as an actor when you know the material you are given does not live up to the audience’s expectations and to make it worse, it doesn’t live up to yours? Katia Winter’s performance has never been the problem when it comes to Katrina, and the fact that she has had to address this means there is a lot of work to do to fix this problem.

So what can the Sleepy Hollow writers do in order to make Katrina an interesting character? No, I don’t mean likable and I don’t mean lovable. I mean interesting. Here are some ideas:

Continue reading The Katrina Problem

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Weekly Review (Midweek Review II)

Welcome to our second instance of Midweekend Review, or, shall we say, Weekly Review? Quite honestly, dear readers, maybe this hasn’t been the best idea. As I was reviewing my TV show schedule, apparently 90% of the shows I watch air from Sunday to Wednesday, as made clear by the fact that there was not a “Weekend Review” post last week. The list will become even bigger when most shows return from hiatus next week. So I am thinking about switching days for these posts or naming them differently, otherwise I will suffer from another massive writer’s block, like this one. I am only getting started, and I’m learning as I go.

But for now, a look at what Galavant, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Broadchurch, the return of Parks and Recreation and Cougar Town had to offer this week!

Galavant

Galavant continues making of Richard one of the most endearing villains of all time in these two episodes, first by trying to cheer up the remaining people of Valencia (which he conquered and killed and then forgot)  and then by trying to win over Madalena, once he finds out she has been cheating on him with the jester by using said jester to help him become funnier. Of course, he fails at all of these things, and while you are constantly being reminded of all the terrible things he’s done, you kind of feel bad.  How do they do that?

Meanwhile, the golden trio’s friendship is put to a test, first by the discovery that Sid is kind of a big deal in his own town, Sidneyland (real name) where he is loved by many for being a knight (which he isn’t). Trouble is, his adoptive, white and Jewish parents hold him to high standards so to impress them, he tells them Galavant is his squire and Isabella jumps to say she is engaged to him. His family immediately welcomes Isabella but not Galavant, who has to spend his time with the rest of the squires. There he discovers that some of them hate musical numbers (WHY?) and ALL of them hate their knights. And it is through a musical number where he realizes how awful he is to Syd sometimes, promising him to be better, and encouraging him to tell his parents who he really is (he was also a little in fear of Syd spitting on his ale).

As normal when you spend too much time with someone, these three gorgeous and diverse (very diverse) people have come to find out everything they find annoying about each other.  It’s only when they are threatened by a group of land pirates (led by no other than Hugh Bonneville) who trap them and steal their jewel that they need to put their differences aside and come together to find their strengths (although Syd is tired of Galavant and Isabella making puppy eyes at each other, understandably). They do so, by helping the pirates get their stuck ship out of land with the condition that they help them get to Valencia (who knew it was so far away?)

Both episodes keep hitting the right notes (see what I did there?). The problem here is some jokes still fall flat (like all the ball jokes in the first episode) but the music and the hilarious character dynamics make up for it. Galavant is very meta (characters can even sense musical numbers coming!) and it seems hyper-aware of its highs and lows (as the second episode proves, when the jester tries to teach Richard comedy) and it’s the fact that it does that makes it such a fun show.

Continue reading Weekly Review (Midweek Review II)

5 British Sitcoms Everyone Should Watch

Fawlty Towers! Extras! The Office! Ab Fab! Father Ted! Inbetweeners! Peep Show! Monty Python! Mighty Boosh! Gavin & Stacey! Sound familiar? Most likely. These are the British comedies everyone who loves a little bit of British comedy has watched and wants you to watch. But there are some unknown (or really not that unknown, but less praised) gems out there waiting for you to discover them, and I am here to get you on the right track. Here are the five British comedies I believe everyone should watch:

Spaced (1999-2001)

spaced

Before ‘Community’ became the current epitome of pop-culture referencing, ‘Spaced’ had done many of the things ‘Community’ did, 10 years before.

‘Spaced’ tells the story of Tim and Daisy, two people who meet at the lowest moment of their lives (one homeless, another broken up with) and decide to pretend to be a couple in order to get a flat together. Of course, as we get to know them, we get to know their new neighbors and best friends.

Pretty standard, right? Well, you could say so, except this show is bizarre. It pays homages in every shot, in every line of dialogue, in every set. If you buy this edition of the DVD you’ll be able to turn on a reference guide that goes so fast you won’t have time to catch them all.

As I mentioned above, everything current comedies are doing these days, ‘Spaced’ did way before. Robot fights? ‘Spaced’ had them. Finger gun battles? ‘Spaced’ had them. Paintball? Yup, ‘Spaced’ did it first.

Directed by Edgar Wright and written by Simon Pegg and Jessica Hynes (now Stevenson) way before Shaun of the Dead and The Cornetto Trilogythis is probably Edgar’s most brilliantly directed project and a masterpiece in its own right. Continue reading 5 British Sitcoms Everyone Should Watch

Midweek Review

When you watch as many TV shows as I currently do, reviewing each and one of them is hard. Having said this, I wouldn’t be me without having a lot of opinions. That is the reason why I’ve created TWO new sections for the blog: Midweek Review, posted on Thursday for shows airing Sunday to Wednesday and Weekend Review, for shows airing from Thursday to Saturday and posted on Sunday. This way I will be able to cover more shows, with shorter reviews that go straight to the point.

If at any point an episode is so good – or so bad – that a whole review is necessary, it will simply get its own post.

And without further ado, here is your first “Midweek Review”, featuring: ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’, ‘Galavant’, ‘Sleepy Hollow’, ‘Broadchurch’ and ‘Cougar Town’.

Agent Carter’ will be the lucky gal to get her own post this week.

Continue reading Midweek Review

My dearest chum, Miranda

Sometimes our favorite shows are not necessarily the best, but we love them anyway.

I am not going to tell you ‘Miranda’ is a comedic masterpiece, or that it should join the ranks of best TV shows of all time. The jokes can be repetitive, it breaks the fourth wall entirely, the storylines and scripts are a little wonky, but it has never tried to be that show. It has always wanted to be nothing but a show that makes the audience laugh and it has excelled on that front. On top of that, it has one of the most realistic female characters on TV, maybe cause it’s based on the life of the real woman who created it and stars in it, Miranda Hart:

Continue reading My dearest chum, Miranda

My New Year’s TV Resolutions

2015 is here, and everyone is making impossible resolutions: to exercise more, eat less crap, stop drinking, stop spending money on useless things… I like to keep it simple. My resolutions are achievable goals, like changing out of my pajamas on days where I’m not planning on leaving the house, just in case someone decides to come visit. But some of them also TV-related. So what am I going to try to change on my TV habits this year?

Watch more dramas

masters_sex

Most of the shows I watch are either sitcoms or sci-fi and fantasy and there are not many dramas in my favorite shows’ list (‘The Hour’ and ‘Sherlock’ are exceptions.)

I gave a chance to ‘Masters of Sex’ this year and while I didn’t hate it, I didn’t love it, so I dropped it.  Same thing happened with ‘How to Get Away With Murder’, ‘Blacklist’, and others. I have always rationalized not enjoying straight-up dramas as much with me thinking of TV as an escape from the horrible realities of the world, but the truth is, sometimes they just bore me. That’s why this year I have decided to find some compelling and interesting dramas to watch that can help get me into the genre. Maybe I will give some of the aforementioned a second chance.  Continue reading My New Year’s TV Resolutions