Maniac Season 1 Episode 3: Having a Day Recap

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Yes, we are having a day. In episode 3, Having a Day, we learn about the two worst days of Owen’s life. They were so traumatizing that the day he attempted suicide was not his worst day. His worst day was when he hallucinated for the first time and ended up in a psych ward. Over the course of the episode, Dr Muramoto’s day goes even worse than that.

On the bright side, Dr Mantleray returns to supervise the project he founded, and he proves to be an inspiring, if eccentric, leader. Annie, Owen and #5 are all red-flagged, but survive the ordeal. Owen and Annie begin to bond as a team. Azumi survives a trip to the real world.

After an episode full of obstacles and trauma, the group forges ahead to the next stage of the trial, the “B” pill, which will hopefully lead to better days.

Episode 3 begins where the last episode ended, with the subjects regaining consciousness from the “A” pill. Owen is awake before the others. The scientists have the subjects’ “reentry” timed down to the second. The subjects are all traumatized as they come to.

One of them, #3, says that the treatment was unethical. Carl the Genie tells her, “You waived ethics in your consent form.”

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Maniac Season 1 Episode 2: Windmills Recap

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In episode 2, Windmills, we get to know Annie Landsberg, whose world is both the opposite from and the same as Owen’s. While Owen’s life has been filled with ongoing trauma dealt out by his large, abusive family, Annie has very little family, but has been shaped by a few key traumatic events and the loss of loved ones. Owen lives in poverty by choice, in order to maintain his integrity and mental health, while Annie has no choice but to eek out a living, in what’s clearly a difficult economy, on her own.

Owen has learned to retreat inside himself as a defense against the family he’s outnumbered by, while Annie has learned to posture and be aggressive when threatened. In episode 1, we saw her use her trench coat to appear larger, and her voice and facial expressions to drive away potential threats before they became serious. Since she’s on her own, she tries to scare away anyone who might hurt her before they can get too close.

Having grown up in a family full of aggressive posturers, Owen is immune to the tactic, until the aggressor gets serious about inflicting harm. He most likely can instinctively tell when that switch has flipped. At the end of episode 1 he walks right through Annie’s defenses as if they aren’t there, shocking her into taking a different approach with him.

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Maniac Season 1 Episode 1: The Chosen One! Recap

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I’ve gone back and forth on whether to write about Maniac, Netflix’s new black comedy which was created by Patrick Somerville and Cary Joji Fukunaga and stars Emma Stone and Jonah Hill, but I decided to wait until I’d watched the whole thing before making a decision. During the first few episodes, I thought I wouldn’t, because it reminded me of Legion and other surreal, but aimless, shows that I’ve been burned by in the past. Professional reviewers were even comparing Maniac to those shows. But as the season continued, Maniac became something else.

Maniac is a surrealistic, quirky, scifi black comedy that can get very dark and can go off on tangents that don’t make sense at first. It’s also, at least for now, a limited series, which means it’s written as a self-contained story. And what Maniac is, at its heart, is a lovely, optimistic, long form, indie romantic comedy, with a beginning, middle and end. Both indie films and works of surrealism have difficulty coming to a satisfying conclusion (and sometimes even commercial works do, looking at you, Castle Rock S1!), so the ending of Maniac is a major accomplishment, in my book.

I kind of fell in love with this show, and it appears that I’m going to have writer’s block until I write about it. There are 3 other partial recaps in my drafts folder that are going nowhere right now, so let’s give Maniac a try, shall we?

Like most Netflix shows, and many other shows as well, the first three episodes serve as an extended introduction to the season. In episode 1, we get to know Owen Milgrim (rhymes with pilgrim, which is a seeker or wanderer), played with depressed, understated misery by Jonah Hill. You feel like he’s always on the verge of crying, and it’s taken a monumental amount of strength for him to reach this point in his life. He’s been diagnosed with schizophrenia, but refuses treatment.

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Kiss Me First Season 1 Episode 4: Friends Let Us Down Recap

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The battle between Adrian and Leila becomes more intense in this episode, as more real world players characters are drawn into their fight. Several Red Pill members meet for the first time in the real world, with varying results. Adrian’s plans continue to include violence, death and isolation. Even when his victims see through his machinations, like Leila, they are often powerless to stop him from manipulating and hurting people.

At the beginning of the episode, Tess has been gone for 4 days after the argument she and Leila had at the end of episode 3. Leila is hoping she’ll come back soon. Tess left her phone behind and Leila answers when it rings. It’s Adrian calling, of course, and he thinks it’s Tess that answers, or pretends to. When he finds out that it’s Leila who’s answered and that Tess is missing, he drops all pretense. Leila asks if he’s going to kill Tess when he finds her. Adrian insists that he “never kills anyone. That would be so unsubtle.” Lord knows, we wouldn’t want to lose the subtlety points when the judges score the game.

Leila asks why he doing this, but Adrian just says, “Let that emerge.” He leaves her with a challenge, “Who’s going to find her first?” Then he hangs up. Leila doesn’t want to be part of Adrian’s sick games, but she also won’t walk away from people who need her. Adrian is counting on that. Leila takes the bait, and tells the phone, “Me.”

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Kiss Me First Season 1 Episode 3: Off the Rails Recap

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Leila is further drawn into Adrian’s machination’s in episode 3 of Kiss Me First, as she tries to save Tess from herself and Denier from Adrian. She learns more about Adrian’s methods and begins to work with an important ally. Adrian and Leila’s interactions begin to turn into a very intense chess game when he starts to figure out that she isn’t as predictable as he thought.

March 2005- Azana Planet Launch

Ruth Palmer: Welcome to Azana Planet. Friends, colleagues, gamers, the wait is finally over. My name is Ruth Palmer, and today I’m going to change your world. You’ll decide what it becomes.

Newsreader: The wait is finally over for gamers around the world with the release of the widely anticipated Azana Planet.

Ruth: We’ve created it with a morphable engine. It’s scaleable, immersive. A whole planet of experience with no boundaries. It can become literally anything.

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Kiss Me First Season 1 Episode 2: Make It Stop Recap

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In this episode of Kiss Me First, Leila begins her investigation of Adrian and Red Pill, while Adrian draws Leila further into the Red Pill world that he’s creating. Tess and Leila grow closer in the real world, and learn each other’s difficult truths. Adrian insists that everyone in Red Pill will get what they need, though it’s not clear that Adrian is actually able to judge what they need, as opposed to what he thinks or wants them to need.

The episode begins with Calumny’s grayed out, dormant avatar standing alone in an empty field. Adrian rides up to it on a motorcycle, touches it, says, “Do widzenia,” and it dissolves. He rides away again.

In a flashback, Leila buys Axabutol from the pharmacy. The pharmacist is concerned about the potency of the medication and wants Leila to speak to a pharmacist, but Leila refuses. Axabutol is a fictional drug, as far as I can tell, but meant to be an opioid.

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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 3 Episode 13: Nathaniel Is Irrelevant./Season Finale Review

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This is a photo of Paula, played by the incomparable Donna Lynne Champlin, as she sings a song from the Crazy Ex-Girlfriend season 3 finale about the glorious and joyful process of giving birth, to help Heather feel better about what she’s gotten herself into. The song sounds pretty, everything looks beautiful, and there are even laughs to be had. Champlin sounds like the talented, amazing diva that she is. But as the song continues the lyrics go off the rails, making birth sound more and more like an apocalypse on your genitals. It ends with Heather holding a fake, gray, dead-looking placenta in her arms instead of a baby.

That’s this season, and this episode, of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend in a nutshell. To write the song, Miracle of Birth, songwriter Jack Dolgen had the show’s female writers tell him their labor and delivery horror stories, then he and his cowriter Adam Schlesinger wrote the song in the studio in two hours, based on those notes. So, it’s a simplified, biased part of the experience, filtered 2nd and 3rd hand through the male point of view, turned into a rushed product. That’s season 3 of this show.

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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 3 Episode 9: Nathaniel Gets the Message!

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This week, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend continues its sob fest over men’s problems, and I mean that literally. After Dr Shin encourages her to spend her free time helping others, Rebecca decides to save an engaged man from a bad marriage, no matter the cost. Darryl continues to struggle with the ramifications of deciding to have a baby alone. Nathaniel and White Josh bond over their romantic break ups, because no one understands the problems of hot, sensitive guys. Josh joins the party for a while, because he has problems, too. Rebecca stays away from the ex-boyfriends, for now, but she does decide to rescue Darryl. I don’t think she’s quite gotten the message about this whole “Stop obsessing about men” thing.

The episode picks up with Rebecca and Nathaniel’s break up scene. Except Rebecca explains that it’s not a break up. She just needs to avoid falling into old obsessive patterns again, so she can’t see him any more.

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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 3 Episode 8: Nathaniel Needs My Help!

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This week, the women of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend are all about keeping the men happy. Rebecca is trying to make up for Nathaniel’s sad childhood and to prove that she’s still an A+ therapy student. Paula takes on Darryl’s babymaking decisions, because these things are just too complicated for a single dad to figure out on his own. Lourdes is kicking Josh out of her house, but she’s also making him grow up and stop being so lame. The mixed message here is that it’s the job of strong, independent, modern women to take care of men’s emotional and caretaking needs, at every stage of life, whether the men think they want it or not. Even if the men resent it at first, they’ll thank you for it later. Since empowering women through enforcing gender stereotypes doesn’t do it for me, this was another disappointing episode.

Lourdes is just about perfect in my opinion, so I don’t have much to complain about there. She’s starting up a home daycare business, and needs Josh’s bedroom for the toddlers. She has a muralist coming on Monday to paint dolphins on the walls, so Josh needs to clean out his closet and move in with Hector and his mom by Monday. Josh gets off to a slow start, fondling every memento and getting lost in memories. When he gets to his old Karaoke machine, it’s all over. He stays up all night singing every song.

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