Stumptown Season 1 Episode 10 : Reality Checks Don’t Bounce Recap

Dex Shows Judge Cat Photo

This week on Stumptown, Dex helps a reality show judge with his wayward brother and tries to cope with the thought of Ansel moving out. Miles, Grey and Dex all deal with the fallout from Grey’s relationship with Liz. Miles brings Grey in to help with a case.

Dex spends the episode struggling with her fear of being alone, as symbolized by the many cat and cat lady references. The cat lady references and warnings to uppity women who aren’t nice enough to men and children even spilled over into Fox’s Almost Family, which aired at the same time on Disney’s other broadcast network. Interesting synergy.

I am traumatized by tuning in early enough to catch the last ~minute of the show that’s on before Stumptown, in which a group of very young children coach a very old man on how to pick up women in a bar, then heckle him as he puts their advice to use. This might be the most disturbing thing I’ve seen this month, and I’ve seen the news. It’s like those old commercials that put talking adult faces onto babies. Chilling. We don’t need to find new ways to sexualize children.

Continue reading “Stumptown Season 1 Episode 10 : Reality Checks Don’t Bounce Recap”

Emergence Season 1 Episode 10: 15 Years Recap

Jo, Mia & Alex View Message from Piper

In a subdued episode, Jo and Agent Brooks search for Piper after her kidnapping by Benny and Helen. Mia and Ed find a way to send a covert message to Piper. Chris becomes acting police chief and teams up with Alex to investigate a suspicious boat moored in the harbor.

Recap

Jo and Brooks search Benny’s apartment a few hours after his kidnapping of Piper at the end of episode 9, but they’re long gone. Jo finds one of Piper’s sweaters stuffed under a couch cushion, confirming Benny’s involvement. Brooks tells her that Benny closed his bank accounts and gave his landlord notice. The FBI can’t find any family, living or dead. Benny’s background check appears normal going back 15 years, then it stops, as if he didn’t exist up until that point.

Probably because he didn’t.

Jo is stunned at the lengths Benny went to with his plan to fool her and gain Piper’s trust. Brooks assures her that they’ll find Piper soon, but 4 weeks later, they don’t have any new leads. Jo is following desperate hunches, like calling reporter Frank Fontana, a character from the CBS show Murphy Brown.

Continue reading “Emergence Season 1 Episode 10: 15 Years Recap”

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist Season 1 Episode 1: Pilot Recap

zoeys-extraordinary-playlist-episode-101-pilot-promotional-photo-12_full

There are worse things in life to wake up to than Alex Newell singing in the apartment next door. That’s what happens to Zoey Clarke (Jane Levy) when she develops a new musical superpower early on in the pilot of Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, NBC’s new hour long musical series. Alex, who plays Mo, a DJ, fashion designer and artist, frequently sings and plays loud music even before Zoey develops her power. With her new talent, she can hear the songs that he only sings inside his head. Zoey is initially too much of a coding nerd to appreciate any of this.

When there’s an earthquake while she’s having an MRI of her head with a radio playing, Zoey acquires the ability to read minds, in the form of watching people sing fully choreographed musical numbers that explain their current state of being. The computer running the test does something funky as the world shakes, making portions of Zoey’s brain light up that shouldn’t be affected.

Continue reading “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist Season 1 Episode 1: Pilot Recap”

Reprisal Season 1 Episode 3: The Emboldened Conflict Recap

Doris Has Lunch with the Landscapers

In episode 3 we learn more about The Emboldened Conflict, Johnson’s name for the huge gang war that started after his massive argument with Katherine and the unforgivable betrayal that followed it. As far as the Brawlers know, Katherine simply took off one day, out of the blue, after betraying Burt, the brother who gave her everything. Katherine supposedly started the war as part of her betrayal, then Burt used it to unite the gangs.

Viewers also get a closer look at the day to day operations of the Brawlers and follow Doris on her search for the perfect crew. The perfect crew is a bit reluctant to sign on with her, so extended negotiations are in order.

Recap

Cousins Cordell and Earl, aka The Monster Ring, aka the guys who robbed the bowling alley in episode 2, sit in a truck outside of said bowling alley gossiping about sex and family and other universal subjects of gossip. Before long, an alarm sounds on Earl’s watch and they put on their masks. It’s time to rob Mr Bolo’s gaming room.

Continue reading “Reprisal Season 1 Episode 3: The Emboldened Conflict Recap”

Reprisal Season 1 Episode 2: A Flintlock & A Hound

Doris Finds Her Guys & Witt Wrings His Hands

The title of episode 2, A Flintlock & A Hound, refers to an old-style gun fired by striking a spark from a flint and a traditional type of hunting dog. In other words, the hunt is on, and the hunters are armed and ready. Doris is searching for the best crew to act as her backup when she confronts her enemies in the Banished Brawlers. Big Graham is framed by Molly and Doris and thus on the hunt for revenge. Individually and as groups, the Happiness Ghouls and the Banished Brawlers are hunting for a lot of things, most of them conflicting. Joel is definitely trying to maintain the status quo, but he’s not getting any help. The hunt for peace is never an easy one.

Recap

The episode begins with a major piece of Ethan’s origin story. Late one night in Detroit, several weeks ago, Ethan prepares to leave work at Doris’ restaurant. As he says good night to her at the bar on the way out, they’re both mocked by the last customer, an obnoxious redneck. The bartender informs the redneck that it’s closing time. The customer continues to argue and insult the staff before he stumbles outside, shoving Ethan as he leaves.

Continue reading “Reprisal Season 1 Episode 2: A Flintlock & A Hound”

The Man in the High Castle Season 4 Episode 2: Every Door Out… Recap

High Castle S4Ep2 Mengele & John.png

“Every door out… is a door in.” In season 4, episode 2, Dr Mengele and his portal experiments return. The program has advanced significantly in the last year, with regular teams of Nazi spies making the trip to the Alt-World for both espionage and sabotage. Thanks to Hawthorne Abendsen and the Reich’s enhanced interrogation methods, Mengele has also made a map of the multiverse. John Smith understands the potential waiting for them in each world- if the Nazis can send someone to a new world, that world can send someone to the High Castle world as well. Everyplace is a potential threat.

Including schools and homes in the American Reich, since children have been taught to spy on and turn in their loved ones. Some, like Amy, are very enthusiastic about enforcing the rules. Jennifer isn’t happy about being back in the Reich, so John has to play referee between his two daughters to keep them both alive.

Continue reading “The Man in the High Castle Season 4 Episode 2: Every Door Out… Recap”

Reprisal Season 1 Episode 1: The Tale of Harold Horpus Recap

Reprisal S1Ep1 Doris & Graham.png

My review of Reprisal season 1 is HERE.

In episode 1 of Reprisal, we’re introduced to Katherine Harlow, aka Doris Quinn, who begins the story as a scorned part of the Banished Brawlers gang, but soon reinvents herself into Chef D, a respectable Detroit caterer. Unfortunately, Chef D finds that the men of the Detroit restaurant world aren’t much different from the men of her hometown gangster world, which forces her to make some decisions that will affect more than just herself. As William Faulkner said in his novel Requiem for a Nun, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”

Reprisal takes place in a neo-retro noir alternative world that could be the recent past, but could also be a future which has regressed technologically. It could be 100 years into our future, in which we’ve dialed back the level of materialism in order to save the planet or because of the way wealth has been redistributed. In the retrofuture world of Reprisal, Original Star Trek’s communicators have become modern flip phones, which are in use alongside old style land lines. The music spans many decades, from rockabilly and blues to punk.

Much of the series’ look refers back to the post-war era of the late 1940s-60s, especially as viewed through the lens of film.The creators have drawn from films such as Rebel Without a Cause, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Dirty Dancing, Blade Runner and American Graffiti. They’ve combined the neon of the 50s and the neon of neo noir/cyberpunk into their own disaffected, Gothic Noir style.

Continue reading “Reprisal Season 1 Episode 1: The Tale of Harold Horpus Recap”

Stumptown Season 1 Episode 9: Dex Education Recap

Stumptown S1Ep9 Dex & Penny

The winter finale of Stumptown finds Dex reunited with one of her high school nemeses, a redhead formerly known as “Perfect Penny”, who knew our heroine as “Dirty Dex”. Both have grown beyond their high school personas, though they each still have some of the character quirks that earned them their nicknames, proving we are all works in progress. And that it’s easy to use words to mislead, which happens a lot this week. From the interrogation room techniques the police use to the way the drug dealers try to misdirect Dex, there are many ways to lie, including to oneself.

Penny brings Dex the case of the week, which involves her daughter being expelled from an expensive private high school for dealing drugs. Meanwhile, Dex tries to sort out what really happened at the end of her night out at the casino with Liz.

Continue reading “Stumptown Season 1 Episode 9: Dex Education Recap”

Emergence Season 1 Episode 9: Where You Belong Recap

153941_0489_full

In episode 9, the winter finale of Emergence, Jo and her family fight to keep Piper out of the hands of the terrorist group that’s been bombing Auger Industries sites. In the process, they come to a mutual agreement about Piper’s standing in the family, Ed pursues a possible treatment for his cancer and a traitor in their midst is revealed.

Some huge events happened very quickly at the end of episode 8, including the death of Alan Wilkis at the hands of a new character, Helen, who accused him of taking something that didn’t belong to him, and Piper finding out the truth about what she is, but not succumbing to the fatal exception.

And Jo and Alex making out. Oh, darn it, that was still only in my head. They are definitely both thinking about it for real, though. Chemistry doesn’t lie. Stay away, new homewrecking FBI Agent Ryan Brooks, Jo’s taken.

Continue reading “Emergence Season 1 Episode 9: Where You Belong Recap”

Stumptown Season 1 Episode 8: The Other Woman Recap

Stumptown S1Ep8 Dex & Dex

This week on Stumptown, Dex faces old foes and old issues in order to solve a case for Sue Lynn Blackbird. Dex and Grey attempt to navigate around Grey’s relationship with Liz, while Liz and Ansel become better acquainted.

Recap

Dex sits at the bar and checks out a comics-style drawing of herself done by Liz, at Grey’s request, for Dex to use on her PI Yelp page. Grey thinks she needs tp jazz up the page to bring in hits and paying customers. Dex, as usual, rejects ideas that are new and related to Liz, despite Ansel’s enthusiastic approval. During the conversation, they find out that Liz played college soccer with Tobin Heath, a famous real life player for the Portland women’s  pro soccer team, the Portland Thorns FC. Ansel is a big fan of the team.

Sue Lynn enters and puts a stack of cash down in front of Dex as a retainer. She says that someone is harassing her using seemingly minor acts and she wants Dex to find out who. They’ve stolen her wallet, broken into her house, put a rotting fish on her windshield, and laid a honeytrap by sending a man to seduce her. He was just her type, but too perfect. Dex thinks she’s being paranoid. She’s barely finished saying it when a bomb explodes on the hood of Sue Lynn’s car. Dex sees Sue Lynn’s point and takes the job.

Continue reading “Stumptown Season 1 Episode 8: The Other Woman Recap”