Tuesday, December 20, 2005

BAD GIRLS XMAS SPECIAL: PRISONER CELL BLOCK H.E.L.L.

I was going to write something about this but it is hard to mock something that is so patently ridiculous. Suffice it to say that anything that features
- murderous, knife wielding ghosts
- the daughter of Satan
- someone being stabbed to death with a sharpened crucifix
- exorcisms
- Bodybag having her gusset attacked by giant rats;
is alright by me. Also Stephanie Beacham turns out to be a crack electrician! That is surely the most unbelievable plot twist of all!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

ROMEWATCH

This week Cleopatra is coming at ya, as Caesar and his minionators (including Pullo and Vorenus) ponce around in Egypt – land of the CGI Lighthouse. First of all they have to deal with Ptolemy, who is a chubby brat with a felt tip beard and a coterie of drag queen stroke eunuchs with crazy wigs. There is some business with decapitated heads etc and then our heroic duo are sent to rescue Cleopatra, who turns out to be a dope fiend with a pixie haircut. Hmmm. To cement her position, Cleo decides that she has to get pregnant pronto so she can then seduce Ceasar and convince him that the kid is his. Now who can knock her up in a hurry I wonder?? Why yes, it is Pullo, who has already impressed Cleo by stabbing a nubian assassin to death in her bed chamber. Sexy. Don’t come knockin’ when the palanquin/mobile room thing is rockin’.

All of a sudden a year has passed – Ceasar and Cleopatra are a couple with a bouncing baby boy, Ptolemy is ptoast, Marc Anthony is still ruling Rome with a rod of iron and, if the montage is to be believed, Servalan and Octavia have spent the entire year stroking each other’s bosoms.

No Jullii Cooper this episode. Booo!!! No Niobe moping around this episode. Hurrah!!!

ARSE FACTOR

I managed to not watch this at all last series, which is just as well given that the smarmy looking winner bloke has completely vanished without trace. Unfortunately I actually got sucked into it this time round as (a) my boyfriend’s housemates watch it and (b) it is repeated on Sunday morning when nothing else is worth watching. Hangover TV a go go.

Oh how annoying it is – first of all the judges are beyond irritating with their carefully scripted banter and conflict and their carefully delineated personas – Simon = grumpy one, Sharon = saucy but nurturing one. Louis = wet rubbish one.

Also I used to hate it when the two losers had to reperform a song and the judges had to give them advice. The advice from these seasoned industry professionals mainly consisted of such gems as “Just do your best and put your heart into it.” Gee thanks a lot, Simon. I never would have thought of that. Thank God I have all your years of industry experience on my side to deliver such incisive advice that no-one else could possibly have thought of. Idiots.

Also the “drama” of the three judges choosing who is dumped is a pile of shit too and a big slap in the face to everyone who bothers voting. The judges should just write down the name of the LOSER on a bit of paper and all hold them up at once a la Weakest Link.

I hate a lot of the contestants too.

Chico is basically the Cheeky girls melted down and remoulded as a male stripper who performs for hen parties in Croydon.

The Conway sisters. Ha ha ha ha. Every week they grimly karaoke-ed their way through some forgettable Wilson Phillips type song, with a non-winning combination of wobbly harmonies and weak individual vocal parts. Only kept around to weaken the competition for the judges’ favourites.

Journey South. Who is voting for these two and are they supposed to brothers or gay lurvers or what? There is a disturbingly blank faced one who looks like an Auton and a rough one that inexplicably reminds me of Orville the Duck. They sing insipid adult oriented rock songs whilst jangling on a guitar that should more correctly be used to batter them over the head.

Andy sang at a mate’s wedding in the summer so I’m not allowed to say anything bad about him.

Brenda should have won as she has a fantastic voice and is a great performer. Shane is cute (but not that cute – lads like him are ten a penny on Old Compton St) and has quite a versatile voice. I think he will be the winner but what kind of career will he have? A string of increasingly pointless cover versions? (Unchained Melody again? oh good. That song is still reeling from being savagely assaulted by Gareth Gates and Robson und Jerome). If his manager had any sense he could be turned into a kind of Brit Justin Timberlake but who is going to come up with a bunch of cracking original songs for him to record?

Friday, December 09, 2005

WEEDS

This series has just finished on Sky telly but it is bound to be on Channel 4 soon so watch it then, I implore you! Basically it sounds like a “gosh gasp, behind the smooth exterior of suburbia weird things happen, who would have thought it!?” type thing but it is better than that rather clich├ęd scenario would suggest. Basically Mary Louise Parker plays Nancy, a 40ish suburban housewife with two sons who decides to make ends meet by selling pot to all the other suburban denizens after her husband dies and leaves her up financial shit creek. Weeds = “widows weeds” and also “reefer”. Do you see what they did there?

MLP is very likeable and good as the widow and should secure best actress noms aplenty. Also her best friend Cynthia is a cracking character as played by Elizabeth Perkins (ditto for her with the awards noms). She starts out as an evil, icy control freak bitch, spying on her teenage daughter with hidden cameras, mercilessly tormenting her other “fat” daughter and drugging and shaving her husband when she finds out he’s been having an affair. But then she gets breast cancer, turns into a more sympathetic character (but is still way acerbic and watchable) and goes on a hilarious mid life crisis style bender. I also like the maid character and the cool deaf girlfriend. As the program airs on cable in the US, it has proper swearing and shagging too. Hurrah!

Unfortunately it is not all plain sailing – Nancy’s brother in law character (a stoner waster who moves in and inexplicably is allowed to stay, even though he is an annoying bastard) is irritating and not funny and takes too much screen time from the ladies. The eccentric younger son is also kind of annoying, though I liked the Godfather spoof (with him in the Diane Keaton role) in the last episode. Nancy buys all her drucks from a black family in a rough part of town and the sassy matriarch character is sometimes very stereotypical. It is hard to tell if this is ironic or not. Sometimes the plots are a bit worthy and didactic too, ie when brother-in-law has a rant about the War in Iraq and when Cynthia uses her bitch powers to stop a gay teacher from being sacked – all valid points but coming across as rather out of place. Still, these faults are bearable in the post-Friends sitcom wasteland when all we have to keep us happy is “Joey” (how to improve Joey = kill off any character not played by Drea De Matteo or Jennifer Coolidge)) and “Will and Grace” (how to improve Will and Grace = kill off any character called Will or Grace).

Thursday, December 08, 2005

ROMEWATCH

This week was a bit rubbish, with many unbelievable coincidences and random plot shenanigans.

Ceasar finally confronts Pompey in battle. Even though Pompey has, like, zillions more men than Ceasar he still manages to lose somehow. The battle scene takes about three seconds and is re-enacted by a cast of several, and later on Pompey explains how he got his ass kicked by drawing a diagram on the floor with a stick. I’m not sure where they spent their multi million pound budget but it certainly wasn’t in this episode. Next thing you know, Pompey is disguised as a merchant, hanging round with a bloke with a metal nose and trying to get to Egypt without any soldiers or anything, and Brutus and Cicero are sucking up to Ceasar. It is all a bit disjointed.

Meanwhile, Jullii Cooper’s daughter and Servalan randomly start lezzing it up. Eh?

Also meanwhile, Pullo and Vorenus miss the big battle because they are shipwrecked on a desert island. Really. They escape by building a raft out of bloated corpses. Mmm, I bet that smells almost as nice as the P&O ferry from Harwich to Zeebrugge. Also, believable much? They get washed up right next to Pompey and decide not to arrest him, because he is already a pathetic loser. When Ceasar finds out, he is not very pleased but daren’t punish the blokes as they are obviously blessed by the Gods of Plot Contrivance. It doesn’t matter much anyway, because as soon as Pompey gets to Egypt he is murdered to death by some random bloke on a beach. Oh well.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

ROMEWATCH

Male full frontal nudity is actually a plot point this week as Attia of the Jullii Cooper tries to suck up to Servalan by giving her a well hung slave as a present (something that I suspect will be missing from the “Christmas gift ideas” sections of weekend colour supplement magazines this month). I have decided that, entertaining though she is, Jullii Cooper is actually a rubbish manipulatrix – she totally blew it with Hot Marc Anthony by blurting out “let’s get married, betray Caesar and rule Rome together, bwah hah haha!” (sigh, you’re supposed to get him to do all that shit but think it’s actually his own idea). Marc called her a harpy and stomped off to bail out Caesar and (spoiler) will probably start boning Cleopatra soon too. Also Jullii thinks that Servalan doesn’t know that she fucked things up between her and Caesar, even though Servalan is sitting at home spending all her time practising making dead eyed evil faces and sticking pins into a doll in the likeness of Jullii.

Btw, I’d love to know what happened to Jullii’s first husband…

In other news, Vorenus is still BORING. Pullo looks quite handsome with his hair grown out. I imagine there was a 3000% increase in Pullo/Vorenus slash fiction (vom) on the interweb when Vorenus got drunk and Pullo gave him a big hug and carried him home. Pullo is training Walter the Softy (aka Octavian) in the arts of sword play and whoremongering and now all the blokes have ponced off to Greece to fight Pompey.

24

Jack Bauer’s cunning plan to escape with Chief Overacting DrugLord under cover of a large scale prison riot turned out to not be a very good one. Surprise surprise. They dressed up as prison guards, perhaps failing to notice that prison guards were being KICKED TO DEATH in every corridor and were promptly captured by hunky prisoners and forced into a lame Deer Hunter rip-off Russian Roulette game. You’d have thought the prisoners had better things to do than recreate classic 70s films (like, oh I don’t know, trying to escape??) and everyone knows that Jack isn’t going to kark it so early in the season. In the end Square Headed Chase bailed them out and let them escape in a chopper. Um, couldn’t have Chase let them escape in a chopper in the first place without all the guards being KICKED TO DEATH? Just a thought, Jack. Anyway, now CODL has turned the tables and captured Jack and is taking him down to Mexico. No doubt the sultry drug wife will help Jack escape (in fact, I bet that Jack and SDW had a steamy affair when Jack was undercover) but I hope he is tortured a bit first, just to teach him a lesson for being such an idiot.

CTU is still a hive of backstabbery and bitchiness. That useless gimp Chappelle (aka the smarmy vicar from Sopranos) has been brought in, presumably to tell Michelle off for moping around about Tony and hacking into webcams so she can watch doctors rummaging around in his neck. Gross. (he’s going to be fine btw. boring) and to tell Kimmeh off for moping about Jack (she knows he has gone off the rails. Also Chloe found Jack’s drug fixin’s in his office and told everyone. Doh). Kimmeh has managed to discover that Gael is the mole (yes, CTU is so rubbish that the stupidest member has discovered a major security leak) and is now at gun point. That is pretty good going for Kim to wait for 6 whole episodes before getting herself in mortal peril.

It turns out that Surfer Boy doesn’t carry the Killer Space Flu after all. Phew. I totally guessed that was going to happen btw. I suppose that means the bio threat is over and they can all go home and relax now.. or can they???? (not - seeing as there are still 18 hours to go…)

Meanwhile over at the President Palmer zzzzz… What? Eh ? I must have dropped off for a second there.

Tick... tick… tick…

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