Tag Archives: Chuck Hansen

True Blood Recap (S06 E05): Camp Auschvamp

And the best title of the Season goes to…. “Fuck The Pain Away”!

Ironic, since there’s very little fucking going on. Especially considering that its True Blood that we’re watching.

The Fairy Princess

Why does everything dramatic have to happen to Sookie? Its like what Ron Weasley very astutely observed about Harry Potter’s misfortunes: “Why is it always you?”

Let’s summarise the ‘bombshells’ that we’ve gathered throughout this episode. (I resisted writing this recap for the longest time purely to annoy The Sister, as she kept scurrying around the apartment screaming about how many ‘bombshells’ were dropped this week and how I needed to watch it so I could geek out with her.)

1. Sookie is a Fairy Princess.

2. Warlow is her betrothed. Together, they are meant to save the fairy race. Or, create a new fairy-vamp hybrid race?

3. Sookie’s dad has a lot in common with Medea and her infanticidal ways. Basically, he reckons that dead child > vamp child.

4. Warlow killed Sookie’s parents to stop them from killing her.

5. Lafayette channels Sookie’s dad, who possesses his body and tries to kill Sookie again.

On the shit side – UGHH SOOKIE. Sookie is so annoying. Can’t all this exciting stuff happen to someone else? Anyone else? Not only must all the hot men fall in love with Sookie and her fairy vagina, but she has to be frickin’ Fairy Royalty as well? As if she doesn’t think she’s special enough.

On the plus side – Robert Kazinsky is a babe. It’s a bit fan-fiction-y for him to be her immortal knight in shining armour, fighting for her life and love through the centuries and dimensions, yada, yada. Nevertheless, I’m totally feeling it. It might have something to do with the fact that Rob Kazinsky is totally dreamy. (For more evidence, please see Rob Kazinsky in Pacific Rim as a sexy robot pilot.)

Billow (Warlith?)

Has anyone noticed how… uh… bushy Lillith’s lower department is? Is there someone on the True Blood crew specially assigned to wrangling her merkin? Like, “Hi, I’m Doris. I’m going to be your Pubic Wig Stylist today!” I get it, though. She’s, like, super old and European (?) so going au naturel is the only way to go. It’s just awkward because its so obvious that its a wig. You can see clearly the boundaries of the piece. Its like the True Blood hair department was over-budget and someone decided it was a smart idea to glue Bert from Sesame Street’s hair piece over her crotch instead.

Okay, sorry. I’ve just spent an uncomfortable amount of words discussing Lillith’s vagina-wig.

The only sexing we get in this episode is Lilith awkwardly raping a primitive Warlow (Rob Kazinsky with a bad wig of his own).

Yeah, Billith chomping down on Jesus-haired Warlow was kinda awkward. Chick Lillith was fully sexed up on Warlow. Now that Bill is Billith, there’s the whole homoerotic element playing out again.. Is is just me, or has anyone else noticed that Warlow is getting frisky with a lot of the True Blood men? I guess Sookie can only hook up with so many of them before we get bored.

To summarise, Billith can command Warlow as his maker because he has Lillith’s blood essence in him. He tries to command Warlow to help him save vampire kind. Warlow tells him to get fucked. 

Warlow is now one of my fave characters. 

Writers, please hear this – Billith sucks. Bring back Bill Compton!

Camp Auschvamp

Firstly, Anna Camp is THE BEST. If ever you need a self-righteous priss with a hidden crazy/bitch streak, she’s your girl. Case in point – Anna Camp as Caitlin in The Good Wife, as Bethany Van Nuys in Mad Men, as Vomiting Acappella Queen in Pitch Perfect, as Southern Belle-Bitch in The Help. She’s really carved a niche for herself. 

She’s fucked a gay guy. She’s fucked an old guy. Now, she’s fucked a vampire-lovin’ guy. She really has shitty luck with men. Oh wait, she’s a hateful bigot. Nvm. Let’s hope she comes across an actual vampire guy at some point. She deserves some comeuppance.

This episode, we are introduced to Vamp Camp. Its very Auschwitz meets Shawshank Redemption meets Girl, Interrupted in a shiny Hunger Games Capitol facility. Honestly, I think its the most creative the writer’s have been all season. We can only stomach so much of Sookie’s love dramas before we crave something a bit different.

The vampires picked up by the LAVTF are shipped to this facility where they become test subjects. It serves as a research facility as well as a holding prison for vamp kind in the South. 

The vampires are sorted into four tiers according to intelligence. The elite are studied in psychotherapy sessions while the rest undergo tests ranging from physical endurance to, uh, coital prowess. Meanwhile, the rest are detained in communal mess areas where everyone tries their darndest not to get Shawshanked.

After Pam gets caught, Eric and Tara turn themselves in. Jessica gets nabbed after running into Conservative nutjob Anna Camp at Jason’s. 

Eric proves to be a bad ass at retrieving rubber balls and shooting people. Pam gets psychoanalyzed by a pervy therapist who likes to watch her drink blood out of exotic Asian bloodbank, Som Chai. Jessica whimpers like a Baby Vamp to Tara (get it together, Jess). 

And then, the twisted vamp-hating bigots decide to get Gladiator on Eric and Pam.

Let me just make this clear – if Eric or Pam dies in the next episode, I REFUSE TO CONTINUE WATCHING.

Plea to the Writers: Notice how there is no mention about Werewolves or Shifters? On principle, I refuse to write about those of whom I care little. Do your TV show a favour on focus on the supernatural group people actually care about. RAH RAH VAMPIRES! (Okay, I guess you can write a little about Sookie so long as you promise that you’ll focus on Warlow and his shirtless scenes.)

 

 

 

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Pacific Rim Review: An Ode to Robots and Monsters

I’m the type of person who likes to hear the bad news before sweetening up my life with a bit of the good stuff. So lets get the pain out of the way:

1. Stereotypical character tropes – there’s the wise black commander dude, the feisty Asian chick, the wildcard beefcake hero…etc etc

2. Awkward pseudo-love story undertones between the wildcard beefcake and the feisty Asian (at least it was inter-racial)

3. Hammy dialogue. Like, very hammy dialogue. (Beefcake to Asian: “C’mon, c’mon! Let’s do this… TOGETHER!”)

Now that we’ve eaten our veggies, let’s gobble up some yummy sweets.

I’ll be honest, I gave Pacific Rim a lot of shit when the first trailer came out. What did I say again? “The Transformers Take Cloverfield”? I suppose I also said some other colourful stuff involving Michael Bay, JJ Abrams, and poop. I forget.

After further consideration, I respectfully forego my preconceived notions and pledge my allegiance to the kingdom of nerditude. In other words, sorry for being a dick, Guillermo, because your movie effing ROCKS.

This summer blockbuster season has been promised to be filmic candy-land: Iron Man, Man of Steel, Wolverine, Monster University etc etc. All season though, everything has either been hitting below par or merely meeting expectations. Pacific Rim has outstripped my (admittedly, low) expectations unlike any other. I said that it was arriving at the butt-end of the blockbuster season, didn’t I? Instead of being part of the superhero discard pile, little did I expect that Pacific Rim was the freaking clean-up batter for the entire round-up.

Pacific Rim tells the story of Earth’s epic battle against extra-terrestrial monster invaders called Kaiju (“strange beast” in Japanese) that rise out of cosmic portal located at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. These deadly leviathans can level whole cities, and that’s exactly what they proceed to do to the coastal population centres encircling the Pacific Rim. The Kaiju were sent to exterminate mankind to make way for alien colonists.

After realising the futility of conventional warfare, the world’s leadership unites to form the Pan Pacific Defense Corps. In a stroke of fantasy-level collaboration, everyone overcomes their political differences (except probably North Korea, because Kim Jong-Un is a spoiled prick) to pour their resources into humanity’s final solution – The Jaeger Programme. Meaning ‘hunter’ in German, the Jaegers are colossal military mechas powered by two human drivers through a neural link-up. With these super-weapons in our arsenal, humanity finally starts kicking some ass.

After a few years of being badass, the aliens adapt and send out their bigger guns. Jaeger losses are at an all-time high when world leaders decide to shut down the programme in favour of something a little more stupid. In an epic move of bureaucratic dick-baggery, our wise leaders decide that a “coastal wall” is the solution to our problems.

However, after a Category 3 Kaiju blows straight through the coastal wall around Sydney, Australia in a matter of hours, this prompts the remaining Jaeger rangers to form a resistance. They plan a last-ditch assault on the alien portal with a skeleton staff of lone ranger gunslinger types. A plan involving nukes. How could it go wrong?! Thus, shenanigans ensue. Oh man, do shenanigans frickin’ ensue.

First of all, this movie made me irrationally proud of being human. HUMANITY, FUCK YEAH! I felt a little bit like I was in the bleachers for a massive football game – HUMANS VS ASSHOLE ALIENS. Go Team Human!!!

Secondly, Pacific Rim is an exercise in human innovation and  passion. In the years of late, the film horizon has been littered with blockbuster tentpoles that are pale imitations of Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy. I was getting incredibly sick of the dark-cynical-gritties that Hollywood was churning out at an astonishing rate.

Del Toro’s Pacific Rim is a colourful and imaginative entity. Most importantly, it is a completely original one. When was the last time we saw a movie of this scale that wasn’t based on a comic book, a novel, or a fucking Hasbro toy?

The universe of Pacific Rim is so expansive and so richly fleshed-out. Not since Underworld (before the slew of piece-of-crap sequels) has a filmmaker been rewarded for daring to tackle a such a visionary canon in a little under two-hours on the big screen. Maybe it was for this reason that I felt a flutter of nostalgia for the good old days when movies were original properties and not just some adaptation of the latest YA faux-Twilight craze.

What’s even better is that Pacific Rim manages to pay homage to the genre of Japanese Kaiju without ripping off scenes and monsters from other films (yes, I’m talking to you Tarantino). Despite the mostly god-awful dialogue and the paper-thin characters, it felt like I was living a well-crafted throwback graphic novel. We have our heroes and we have our monsters, and that’s that. (Plus, I’ve been watching a lot of SyFy’s special effects makeup reality competition, Face Off, which has given me a newfound appreciation for creature design.)

Let’s admit, though, that the majority of the reason for why I’m letting the shitty character development fly is because Guillermo Del Toro assembled a cast that’s got charisma leaking out of their eyeballs.

Charlie Hunnam as Raleigh Becket, aka. Beefcake Loose Cannon

Beefcake Charlie was more of a cypher than he was a character. I overlook that because I’ve liked Charlie since I saw Nicholas Nickleby on The Hallmark Channel. Perhaps that’s not the best testament to his acting talents. He was awesome as that Civil War douchebag in Cold Mountain. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen Sons of Anarchy, but he’s probably good in that too because he’s good at everything. Random note, ‘Beefcake Charlie’ would be a great name for home-style fast food joint.

Rinko Kikuchi as Mako Mori, aka. Feisty Asian Badass

Props to the writer/director for NOT turning her into exotic Asian sex kitten with heeled boots and bootie shorts. There was only so much stereotyping I could handle. Rinko is awesome, mainly because she’s my Asian brethren and I feel irrationally supportive. Yay for Asians in big blockbusters! I could’ve done without the awkward sort-of-but-not-really love story with Beefcake Charlie though. But then again, we totes need more inter-racial lovin’ on screens, folks!

Idris Elba as Stacker Pentecost, aka. British Nick Fury

Idris Elba is such a badass. He is the token wise black dude that Morgan Freeman has made a career out of.  He walks around, dropping corny bits of sage wisdom. However, the lame dialogue somehow turns to honeyed gold when it falls out of his mouth. That man could turn a Damon Lindelof script into Shakespeare with his voice alone. If this acting thing doesn’t work out, I suggest going into vocal acting for e-books. In all seriousness, he imbued the character with a depth and gravitas that obviously didn’t exist in the script. I would totally follow this man into war.

Rob Kazinsky as Chuck Hansen, aka. Cocky Douchebag Golden-Boy

I’m gonna be upfront – I’m really biased because I’m falling in love with Rob Kazinsky on True Blood. He’s so bloody earnest. So, it was actually incredibly jarring when he plays an asshole in Pacific Rim. Chuck Hansen is the cocky ranger with the best Kaiju kill-record. He pilots the Australian Jaeger, Strike Eureka, with his papa, Hercules Hansen (yeah, no joke, his name is Hercules. I can’t laugh because I have a cousin named Achilles). He’s the Val Kilmer character in Top Gun, that starts off disliking Charlie Hunnam’s Tom Cruise, but then starts acknowledging him as an equal once he proves himself. Credit where its due – him and Max Martini (who plays his dad, Hercules) have the sole scene in the film that might be remotely capable of spurring a real emotion in the audience. Its at the end, and its kinda sad / touching. On a brighter note, Australian outback represent!!

(I know this pic is so corny, but I couldn’t help myself.)

Diego Klattenhoff as Yancy Becket, aka. Brother Beefcake

*SPOILER* (Heed the spoiler warning lest you wish to be eaten by a Kaiju)

OMG Guillermo! How could you kill of Shane Oman / Mike from Homeland within the first 5 mins of the movie?! He is the bomb! But yeah, that’s right, Raleigh Becket’s brother is SHANE OMAN FROM MEAN GIRLS. HAHAHAHA. Random note: I’ve always found Diego Klattenhoff’s name so weird. Diego is Spanish, Klattenhoff sounds German, and he looks Irish. Its SO confusing to me.

Charlie Day and Burn Gorman as Doctors Geiszler and Gottleib, aka. Comic Relief

Their the odd-couple crack research team. We have the fly-by-the-pants scientist rockstar, Charlie Day, providing a foil to Burn Gorman’s, straight-laced British professor. They bicker. They do funny stuff. They become friends despite their differences. The Internet writes gay fiction about them. Yup. That’s how humanity rolls.

This is the cast that pop culture geeks are vibin’ with. They’re all from popular TV shows, they’re all kinda under the radar, and they’re all totally awesome. (Plus, Ron Perlman makes a sweet cameo to remind the world why he’s the best.)

Everything from the cast, to the concept, to the frickin’ monsters – everything feels like Guillermo has made a film just for us movie nerds in the world. It could’ve been a hot, hot mess (and some parts were). However, Pacific Rim isa testament to the fact that there are still some filmmakers out there who geek out to the same shit we do and are willing to invest millions into creating a high-quality movie for the fans.

How do I know that I loved this movie? Well, when I got home, I spent 2 hours perusing the Pacific Rim wiki, researching everything from the name of the sick-ass Kaiju with the wings (its “Otachi”, btw) to Stacker Pentecost’s drive-suit size (sadly, that info is not available).

If you’re not a pretentious douchebag whose favourite auteur is Godard, GO WATCH IT. This embodies the sense of batshit-awesome that summer blockbuster season was always meant to be.

Random Anecdote: When I left the cinema, I couldn’t stop yammering to The Boyfriend about how The Sister and I would totes make a great Jaeger team. (The closer your bond, the better your Jaeger will fight.) The Boyfriend, being the incredibly sarcastic and dispiriting person that he is, had this to say: “Oh yeah, I’m sure you guys could drive a Jaeger. What would it be called? “Spicy Noodle”? — UM, YES?! We are Asian. We are feisty/spicy. We love noodles.

Jaeger Spicy Noodle

The Internet’s going nuts over its newest toy – the Jaeger Designer. Check out this Buzzfeed list of incredibly convincing Jaeger options. Guillermo, take note for the sequel.

BONUS – Do you doubt just how much care and detail was put into this film? Listen to Guillermo Del Toro wax nostalgic about his “beautiful poem to giant monsters”. Btw, note how how talks about how he stays away from referencing previous films? TAKE A NOTE, TARANTINO. You can still make exciting films without plagiarism.

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