To be honest, I was never really a fan of the Beth character. This is no knock to Emily Kinney, but when the previews for this week's episode hit us with the question, "Where is Beth?" I didn't find myself caring too much. I figured—like in season's past where we spent entire episodes with one group of characters—this week's storyline would focus solely on Beth's disappearance, and I prayed to "The Walking Dead" gods that they'd keep her penchant for breaking into song right before something bad happens to a minimum.
I'm not saying six hours is a small enough amount of time to waste, but after six hours of watching "Gotham" I can now say: I really enjoyed myself. Last night's episode — "Spirit of the Goat" — was good, all pungent and wry and highlighter-bright dark, even in the enterprise of silliness. This isn't an exact comparison, but it felt like the Batman animated series, from the '90s, often just like that.
We begin: Gotham, 10 years ago, a bald man mumbles to himself about being "the spirit of the goat." He's staring into a bathroom mirror and the bathroom has bad lighting. He slips on a leather-y mask. He punches out the mirror. He sneaks into a high-rise and kidnaps a pretty young woman. Go on. Turns out, Dets. Bullock and — who's this — Dicks are on his tail, that this guy has been marauding around and killing Gotham's scions. They've tracked him to an abandoned building; Bullock wants to run in and save the girl, Dicks wants to hang back for additional firepower. (Bullock used to be Gordon and Dicks used to be Bullock. The cycle repeats.)
So they run in and find the woman strung up by her arms at an altar, surrounded by red candles. Their suspect, now exclaiming himself full Goat, is hiding under the platform. Bullock gives chase, Dicks falls through (and looks like he dies), and the Goat gets pumped full of lead after a struggle — and the promise that he will come back.
God bless Chad Coleman. No, I really man that. I didn't realize how much I loved his playing Tyreese until last night when our hardened, heartbroken hero watched in terror as Rick, Sasha, and company brutally laid waste to Gareth and the cannibals inside of a church. As satisfying as it was to watch our survivors stab, bludgeon, and gun-butt their antagonists to death in "Four Walls and a Roof," the look of pure disgust and horror on the burley actor's face reminded us, once again, that on "The Walking Dead" the actions of the living are often more heinous than the undead. But before we dig into last night's climax, which was the "Walking Dead" equivalent of the famous Red Wedding episode from "Game of Thrones" (sans the killing of any major characters, unless you count Gareth), let's see how we got there.
Things led off with poor, poor Bob (Lawrence Gilliard, Jr.) still listening to Gareth (Andrew J. West) babble on about eating people and why taking a fork and knife to women, especially, is our villain's favorite great American zombie apocalypse pastime. The fuck? Bob turns the tables on these people munchers by revealing that they're eating "Tainted meat!", as he was bitten by a walker back when the gang went on a mission to the food bank last week. Yes, I started to scream "Tainted meat!" at the screen with joy like I was in on the plan with Bob. They drop him back off at the church where he reveals to everyone there, his boo Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) included, that he's infected and will turn any day now. Side note: I find it hard to really care about any of the romances with the exception of Glenn (Steven Yeun) and Maggie (Lauren Cohan).
Before Bob's return Sasha and Rick got Father Gabriel (Seth Gillam) to spill the beans on why we're all valid in assuming that's he's got some dark secret he's keeping from everyone. Long story short, the preacher led his congregation to zombie pasture by being the guy who "always locks the doors" even if that means women and children pleading for their lives outside the church while being devoured by walkers. Still, methinks there's something more Father Gabriel might be hiding, but I'm just not quite sure what.
One thing is for sure, Abraham Ford (Michael Cudlitz) is still set on getting the gang to Washington D.C., with or without Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Carol (more on that in a second) who are apparently missing in action. Abraham tells Rick that the bus they fixed up his headed to D.C. in t-minus 12 hours. In that time, a lot of shit happens: like Carol (Melissa McBride) did to his lover, Tyreese (with Sasha's blessing) takes a knife to Bob's temple, making sure he does't turn; Gareth and company return and are slaughtered by Rick (guess his whole "they're screwing with the wrong people" line was dead-on); Michonne got her sword back; and Glenn and Maggie decide to join Abraham's D.C.-bound bandwagon, leaving the others behind. Speaking of my favorite couple, I've got a bad feeling about their forthcoming trip to the District.
We close things out with Michonne running into Daryl, who looks like he's been to hell and back. Michonne asks where Carol is to which Daryl responds by looking back and saying, "Come on out," but the ep abruptly ends before it's revealed whom is with our bowman. Looks like Mr. Reedus has some explaining to do.
"You join us or feed us." Gareth to to Bob
Um, yeah Gareth saying "I'm starting to like this girl," after hearing baby Judith crying in the church.
- The previews for next week suggests we will be catching up with Beth (Emily Kinney), which makes me think that she's not the person(s) with Daryl at the ep's end. So who is it? Just Carol? Doubtful.
- Feel like we need some more of Steven Yeun this season. Just a thought.
- Last week some of y'all mentioned the mystery marker on the tree by the church. It popped up again, earlier in the ep, right before Sasha was attacked by a few walkers.
— In the show's intro, Chris Harrison reveals that the guy who Andi did NOT pick followed her to Mexico while she was on vacation, which is the act of a true wiener, which meant Nick definitely did that. Way to spoil it.
— Andi's father Hy tells Josh: "I feel exactly the same way about Andi that you do." Gross!
— Hy's Blessings to get married are meaningless, but, then again, I love a charade.
— Anyone else notice that Josh is a loud breather? It seems so purposeful, just like his top-and-bottom-teeth smile. It's like, I'm respirating, so I make BREATHING SOUNDS. But I guess it takes like a really big fan to motor a gargantuan humanoid.
BUT FIRST Ashley Hebert and J.P. Hebertbaum are back because she's pregnant and needs people to see that she has breasts now. But, no, that's not enough. She's going to find out whether she's having a girl or a boy right here in front of all her close friends in Bachelor Nation. Chris Harrison rips a hole in the side of her dress so the doctor can jam his wand in, and, frankly, Ashley's just lucky Harrison didn't tear her stomach open and fly away with the fetus in his beak. "You're part of the Bachelor Family now, baby."
Also, fuck, he keeps saying the "sex" of the baby, which sounds so vulgar coming from a man who is a prolific underpants sniffer.
The doctor inserts his wand beneath Ashley's muumuu - "What if there was no heartbeat - that would be so sad," said one of my darker viewing companions - and searches around until he finds a penis, which is good since J.P. basically reveals that if it was a girl he would have drowned it in a creek because you can't watch football with girls. (He didn't say anything like this.)
I came up with an answer that was unsatisfactory to my viewing companions, but we'll get to that later.
First, poor Chris! Just kidding! Congrats, Chris! You won the actual grand prize . . . YOU'RE GONNA BE THE NEXT BACHELOR. I don't have access to any insider info or privileged information, but I am a lady and I have what's known as a Woman's Intuition™ about these sorts of things (things that don't matter and don't make my life any better). I feel it in the bowels of my bowels. That or I have to go to the bathroom.
Speaking of diarrhea, Andi arrives in the Dominican Republic sporting a sleek side braid that looks like something straight out of the Suave Salon Chair Confidential handbook. "It's an amazing place to be in love with one guy at the end of this," she says of the Caribbean island nation. AND, in the meantime, it's a decent place to get boned by guys you kinda like OK.
While we watch the slideshow inside her brain, Andi goes over the things she likes about her final three. I'll summarize:
Josh: His personality - dark hair, piercing eyes, olive skin, height, and muscly build - is nice.
Chris: Cute but lives in rural Iowa, where the only entertainment is playing Ghosts in the Graveyard with a bunch of other adults.
Nick: Tells Andi he likes her a lot. Which she likes a lot.
After weeks and weeks of nervously picking at her meals and having cookies slapped out of her hand by Chris Harrison, Andi is FINALLY feeling bikini-ready for she and Nick's sexy date. Aw, and look. They wore matching swimsuits. The only way they could be matchier is if Nick was also wearing a bikini top. But first they go on HELICOPTER RIDE. The very first of the season, which is unbelievable. Andi says she's on Cloud Nine and it's like, no, excuse me, that's Desiree's cloud. Find your own fucking cloud.
How's this for a coincidence: we send seven marginally employed single people and a shitty country duo called American Young to Belgium to dry hump on park benches and swap spit in a monastery's pottery barn, and then Belgium handily beats the U.S. in the World Cup. Everyone should pretend to be mad at The Bachelorette just like we're all pretending we give a shit about the World Cup. Oh, I'm just kidding. You love soccer and you always have.
So, yeah, we're in Belgium and Andi would appear to be wearing a leather poncho and matching leather pants (she left the gimp mask in her hotel room). Every week of this journey is very important, but this week is extraspecially exponentially more important because it's the week leading up to hometown visits and Andi takes going into a family's home VERY SERIOUSLY. She says it many times. It's VERY SERIOUS to go into other people's homes.
- J.J. may have been sent home, but he's still nestled in everyone's hearts and wrapped around their throats. Almost all of these motherfuckers are wearing scarves now and I'm pointing the finger in J.J.'s general direction.
- Dylan is giving Andi's Suave-styled sophisticated ponytail a run for its money with his slick 'n' slimy half ponybun. Great look, man.
Marcus, the Most Boring Man on Earth™, gets the first one-on-one date on which they'll take "a taste of Brussels," which equals ordering mussels exclusively so Andi can say aloud that they're eating mussels in Brussels. Marcus thinks it's funny, which he indicates by repeating what she just said whilst almost smiling. Andi's not sure about Marcus because he threatened to leave at one point (I barely remember that because it's so hard for me to pay attention when Marcus starts talking), but he explains that he's just scared of emotions, which we know is a pile of shit because he IMMEDIATELY brings up writing in his journal like a woman. Also he's real into telling her he's in love with her which she is very in love with.
DID YOU LOVE JEN SCHEFFT'S ELEGANT HALF UPDO OR WHAT? I did.
Annnd we're back. Back for the final season of "True Blood" and back in Bon Temps, the dinky Louisiana town from whence we first met faerie halfling Sookie and the rag-tag band of supes and humans that follow her wherever she goes. Recent plotlines have largely kept us away from Bon Temps - stuck in an underground lair with power-hungry vampire fundamentalists, hiding out on alternate planes of existence with the faerie/vampire psychopath Warlow, and confined in the late Governor Burell's freaky Vamp Camp prison. The end of season six, however, finds Sookie and (most of) the gang back in Bon Temps, where they belong, just trying to get their lives back to normal.
The major threat posed at the end of season six is roving gangs of savage, Hepatitis V-infected vamps (Hep-Vs or H-vamps for short) who are devouring little towns like Bon Temps because they're hungry, dying, and have nothing to lose. Bill and Sam have devised a plan to pair every human in town with a vampire - the vamps to protect the humans from Hep-Vs and the humans to feed the vamps in exchange for protection. If only they'd gotten their shit together sooner.
As you may recall, Sam is weirdly the mayor of Bon Temps. Sookie and Alcide are together and appear to be settled, if not in a restless, forced kind of way. Jessica still feels really bad about eating three of Andy's half-faerie daughters, but at least she has her boyfriend from Camp, James, to get her through it. Jason and Violet, the 800-year-old vampire who made him forget he hates fangers, are still together, too. Pam took off to find Eric who, unable to deal with the loss of his sister Nora, took off post-Vamp Camp and was last seen burning on a mountain in Sweden.
The June 22 season seven premiere "Jesus Gonna Be Here" harks back to early seasons, pitting characters against more universal and timeless themes such as life and death, love and hate, guilt and innocence. Except, no one's really an innocent anymore. Instead of warring amongst themselves, a default plotline throughout the series, it seems the folks of Bon Temps will have to band together in unexpected and often painful ways to make it out alive.
I mean, Andi is being SUCH a judgey bitch about Josh being a former professional athlete. It's not enough that he's good looking (in a built-in-a-lab sort of way) or that he, I don't know, likes to travel and stuff. Nooooo sir. In the back of her mind, even when his tongues in the back of her throat, he's just another beefcake with toned abdominal muscles and a flaccid intellect.
OH WAIT. You thought I was gonna talk about Marquel and how woefully, disgustingly racist this show is! How he was kicked off before getting so much as a one-on-one date - despite being the most handsome, most likable guy of the bunch - but not soon enough to avoid learning he'd allegedly been referred to as a "blackie" by stupid Andrew. I'm not even necessarily sure J.J. didn't mishear the comment in question, but it doesn't really matter. Marquel was forced to feel like an other amongst a group of guys he'd become friends(ish) with and then react to it on national TV. He was great, but watching it was awful. But I guess we couldn't expect any less than the worst from a show that hasn't had a black lead figure in almost 30 seasons. If this isn't a preface to Marquel becoming the next Bachelor - if he wants anything to do with it - then they are shameless.
Or, if you hate yourself, you could spend two hours on Sunday and two more on Monday watching two episodes of The Bachelorette! That's what I did, not because I hate myself, but because I hate you guys. What? I don't know. I didn't take notes during Sunday's episode, but I think that's pretty much OK because the whole thing was devoted to dressing up like old people for no reason other than Bad Grandpa was a movie that people saw, and then to making an asshole out of Bradley and making us hate a song by a 90s R&B group we hadn't thought about in seven to ten years. Personally, I don't have any use for Boyz II Men now that the cool guy with the cane picked up his sticks (literally). The good news: he's not dead. I got afraid that maybe he was dead. But he does suffer from severe back pain due to scoliosis, so that's kind of sad.
Anyway, Bradley went home and never got to prove that he was a person who could actually sing, which is what he so desperately wanted to do. And if you watched the program with the closed captions on it was only made worse by the fact that his singing was always subtitled "vocalizing." Almost singing. Singing-type noises. At least he had a good cry before he left.
And then Monday night happened! You know, this season's been a little slow so far, what with the long one-on-one dates and the sending home of the only people who are any fucking fun whatsoever (besides Marquel - I love Marquel), so they're like alright, let's shake things up and take this show on the road to . . . CONNECTICUT! The finance and insurance capital of America! This is gonna be too much fun.
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