This Christmas is not like the others!
Christmas in space can get pretty lonely. After all, you’re a billion miles away from the people you love.
The distance was made worse by the fact that all voice communication would soon cease because the Atlas was almost halfway to Mars. Email and text communication would still be possible but even those times would be delayed with messages taking as long as an hour to get delivered.
For the first half of the season, the crew has struggled with the sacrifices made to man this mission, but they’ve held it together because of their ability to stay connected with loved ones. It’s not the same as being there, but you could still be there in real-time with your family or friends.
That’s no longer going to be an option and they are going into the dark and into the unknown.
Therefore, much of the episode focused on everyone saying their goodbyes as if they were their final goodbyes. Emma is certain they will make it back home from the mission, but there are no guarantees and space has proven to be tough on even the most experiences of astronauts.
With Emma’s close connection to her family, she took the goodbye the hardest. And while it’s understandable, Lu’s advice couldn’t be more brilliant.
Yes, losing time with your family is heartbreaking. She wouldn’t be there to see Lex grow up, become a senior, fall in love, etc. She also wouldn’t be there for Matt during his recovery. However, she was gaining something that no man or woman has ever accomplished — she was going to Mars.
Lu’s advice of keeping your eye on the prize is the only thing that will get them through these tough times.
As previously mentioned, space is taking an emotional and physical toll on everyone. Well, everyone except for Lu who is somehow in better shape than she was when they left Earth.
Kwesi began losing parts of his body due to atrophy. While it’s interesting to learn just how space affects your body, that scene an the beginning of the episode where his skin just peeled off from his foot and began floating around in space was nauseating.
Misha is also suffering from a loss of eyesight. There’s apparently a term for your eyesight being severely compromised in space — “space blindness,” but unfortunately, there’s no known cause and thus, no known remedy.
This will obviously complicate things for the crew as their survival depends on everyone being of sound health and mind.
Instead of tackling the issue head-on, Misha is avoiding the problem because he’s scared and knows that it could sabotage everything he’s worked his entire life for. Can you imagine dedicating everything to conquer space and finally reaching Mars but not being able to see anything?
Those floating high above weren’t the only ones struggling.
On Earth, things were just as tense as Matt made it home in time for Christmas. With the home outfitted with ramps to accommodate his wheelchair, home didn’t feel very home-y.
The problem with both Matt and Lex is that they’re bottling up their emotions and trying to keep a sense of normalcy for one another. The harder they try to be normal, the more it’s evident that it’s anything but.
And we all know what happens when you bottle up your emotions. Eventually, they explode.
Lex did a better job of venting all of her frustrations to her mother during their last call. She continues to find ways to create a new normal and is looking for ways to cope with the changes. Isaac has been a huge help with that.
For Matt, it’s not as easy. He doesn’t want to burden Emma with his physical disabilities and is also avoiding the real issues at hand just like Misha because he wants things to return to normal so badly.
His “explosion” finally happened after he struggled to pull down the holiday decorations from the shelf and toppled over as his legs gave out under him.
It’s incredibly hard to accept that you’re no longer able to do the things you once were, but part of growing and accepting change is acknowledging the new limits imposed by your body.
By trying to fix things quickly, I fear he’ll make things worse for himself.
Without Emma, the only way Matt and Lex are going to get through this is by communicating openly.
She snuck out and didn’t even do anything bad — she went to midnight mass for Christmas. Obviously, she’s a good kid that just needs to find her way and breath. And Matt needs to realize that she’s becoming her own person and needs her space. They’ll get it down, eventually.
The first step was simply accepting their new reality and going to Melissa’s for the holidays. I have this weird feeling that Matt and Melissa will form an intimate relationship. I know Matt loves Emma and don’t think he’d ever cheat on her, but I can’t shake this feeling whenever I see them interact. Let’s hope I’m wrong.
The scene between Emma and Ram was also strange. During Away Season 1 Episode 4, I never got the sense that Ram was trying to hit on Emma or overstep any boundaries, so it was weird that she reminded him “not to get the wrong idea.” Was he ever getting the wrong idea?
Three years is a long time, but I never got the sense that Ram was trying to move in on her or mistook her kindness for anything other than friendship and her loyalty to the mission.
The best part of the episode was watching the Atlas crew celebrate the holidays together.
There are plenty of things that they’ll have to deal with, but one night of Christmas cheer is good for the soul. And that Christmas cheer included Misha’s homemade vodka, the first real food in months as Kwesi presented everyone with the first greens grown on the Atlas, and dancing!
Misha also put on a puppet show for his grandchildren, and it was sweet to see the whole crew get involved to help him out with the production.
Misha topped off the night by apologizing to his daughter for abandoning her, and while one apology won’t erase years of pain, it’s a start and the only thing he can do while floating in space. If they don’t make it back — and for the sake of a second season, let’s hope they do — at least she got to hear her father’s side of the story.
No one ever just abandons a child without reason. In Misha’s case, he thought that his daughter would be better off being raised by her uncle and aunt and he was better off in space rather than drinking away his sorrows every day. It may not have been the best decision, but it was the one he thought would give her the best life.
No one can fault him for that.
Slowly but surely, the crew members are beginning to open up and trust each other. It’s lovely to watch.
Kwesi remains the only crew member that we don’t know all that much about, but his celebration of Hannukah with his “mum” seems to indicate he was adopted.
I’ll be interested to see how his storyline plays out moving forward.
What did you think of the episode? Will the crew make it without relying on communications with their loved ones?
Will ‘Manifest’ Get a Season 4 After All?
Merely weeks after the devastating cancellation of NBC’s Manifest, TVLine confirms that the network has been in talks with Warner Bros. and Netflix about a possible Season 4. However, reps for NBC, Netflix, and Warner Bros. have refused to comment for now.
Following the news of the supernatural drama’s abrupt ending in mid-June, fans took to social media with the hashtag #SaveManifest in hopes of reversing the decision and getting it picked up by another network.
After the release of the first two seasons on streaming services, the series quickly dominated the charts. It remained on Netflix’s “Top 10” watched shows for 27 consecutive days and Nielsen’s weekly streaming chart during the week of June 14.
Jeff Rake, Manifest’s showrunner, tweeted in late June, “Your support is awe-inspiring…we’re not giving up. You deserve an end to the story.”
While Rake has not confirmed that another season is officially happening, he did note: “Lots of speculation out there. No comment. Other than, if the impossible happens and the dead rise again, it’s because of YOU.”
Lots of speculation out there. No comment. Other than, if the impossible happens and the dead rise again, it’s because of YOU.#SaveManifest
— Jeff Rake (@jeff_rake) July 20, 2021
Whatever it takes, Rake will even choose to produce a two-hour movie to bring closure to Manifest.
So Manifesters, you’ve been heard, and you can only get louder from here! Will the answers you’ve been waiting for resurface in a possible Season 4 pick-up? Will 828 fly again?
‘Feel Good’ Season 2 Packs Quite the Punch
In Season 2, the final adaptation of comedian Mae Martin’s (they/them) semi-autobiographical comedy, Feel Good takes on much more content in its short six episodes, packing quite the punch.
We’re guided deeper through the traumas of the primary character Mae and left wondering how they’re able to stand on their own two feet after years of childhood grooming, drug addiction, and parental toxicity.
The light answer to this is humor. As it’s joked often throughout the episodes, “comics are supposed to be sacks of shit.” Through light-hearted comedy and the power of laughter, Mae’s story is dissected. However, at times, big topics are rushed and viewers are left grasping at strings, wishing there were more episodes in the season.
Following an unfortunate relapse in Season 1, we’re immediately thrown into Mae’s life in Canada, as they’re about to reenter rehab. They’ve only been away from England for a couple of months, but with the fresh wounds of the breakup, both George (Charlotte Ritchie) and Mae aren’t healed and are still stuck in their desire for each other. I mean, Mae still has George’s photo on their nightstand!
While in rehab, Mae reconnects with an old “friend,” Scott. When he’s first introduced we’re left wondering who he is and what his role is in Mae’s life. As an addict and queer comedian, there’s much more behind Mae’s curtain of trauma than initially presented in Season 1. Much more trauma that’s led to rash behavior, and Mae’s conversation with Audrey, easily foreshadows this.
Intertwined with the main storyline, Mae’s also navigating their non-binary identity. Mirroring Martin’s own coming-out as non-binary, Mae’s figuring it out, explaining that they see themselves as more of a Ryan Goslin or Adam Driver.
Again, with only six episodes to squeeze so much storyline into, Mae’s rehab stint only lasts 15 minutes into the first episode before they’re running out the door back into the arms of Scott.
As Mae’s stumbling through life in Canada, George is also trying to keep her mind focused on things like saving the bees. At an event at her school, she meets Elliot, a bisexual, polyamorous man with whom she bonds. He’s the nice guy, maybe too nice for George. He’s one of those men who are self-proclaimed progressive and ultra-feminist, trying to mansplain the harm in porn’s presentation of women and how sex needs to be a safe space for connection.
And as Mae knows, that’s definitely not how George likes to be treated during sex. Thankfully, George and Mae reconnect, and Elliot is quickly out of the picture with Mae and George recreating their first meet-cute, hoping to restart from a fully healed wound.
As Feel Good is written by a queer person, the portrayal of queer sex is finally construed in a realistic and non-hypersexualized manner. Mae and George run through various role-playing scenarios as they are falling into what seems to be a healthy relationship.
Realistically, their timeline is rushed, but Mae needed some stability before they faced the bigger demons hiding under the bed.
The show cleverly depicts Mae’s moments of withdrawal and trauma responses through a high-pitched ringing sound. As if we’re inside Mae’s head. Originally, Mae experienced the ringing sound when they were with George, as George was a replacement drug. But, in this season, the ringing sound appeared whenever the past tried to resurface.
Mae told Audrey that they had a hard time remembering the past, that it was all like a jumbly tumbly mess of Tupperware containers. But, as the episodes progress, each Tupperware slowly found its way to its matching lid.
It becomes clear that Scott isn’t just an old friend, but a man who used to abuse and take advantage of Mae. After Mae’s kicked out of the house at a young age for drug addiction, they move in with Scott who presents himself as a safe haven and gateway to Mae’s comedic success. When, in reality, he’s a pedophile who’s grooming them.
When a woman calls Mae to talk about Scott, presumably about the things he did to both of them in the past, Mae’s reminded of the trauma they had compartmentalized. A doctor suggests Mae might have PTSD, and with George’s help, they begin the journey of confronting the harmful past.
Meanwhile, through all of the personal traumas, Mae’s working through their professional success after being signed with an agent and fulfilling their dream of TV comedy. However, Mae finds it challenging to reinvent their success from the original standup virality that got them the agent in the first place. As mentioned earlier, with comics, the butt of their jokes is their own trauma.
Unfortunately, as Mae hasn’t healed from their trauma, there’s no way they can make light of it yet. As their career goes for a bit of a downhill turn, and they have a hard time performing for an audience, they begin to seclude themselves and withdraw from the world.
In a much-needed getaway, Mae, George, and Phil take a trip to Canada in order for Mae to confront Scott.
The scene in which Mae directly tells Scott they never want to speak to them again, although a bit anticlimactic, was retrospectively a strong scene that finalized Mae’s character arc in the perfect ending to a witty, raw, and endearing show.
The final episode leaves Mae leaps and bounds beyond where they had been before on their road to recovery. And just as Mae’s love for George grew healthily from a need to a want, our need for a Season 3 resolved itself, and we feel good saying our final goodbyes to Mae and George, knowing fully well they are on their way to a fresh start.
‘Elite’ Season 4 Review: New Students, New Mystery, Same Scandalous Drama
The wait is almost over.
On June 18, Elite returns for its fourth season, but aside from a few new faces and a new principal hellbent on making a difference, things at Las Encinas haven’t changed much at all.
In fact, things are more dramatic than ever.
The premiere of Elite evokes the same feelings as the start of the school year — there’s a rush of excitement for what’s to come.
The series indulges in more of what has made it such a success: scandal, parties, threesomes, love triangles, intrigue, crime, and sex. So. Much. Sex.
I always forget just how many vivid sex scenes there are until I get pulled into a new season, but I’m very quickly reminded.
The first day of school for Guzman (Miguel Bernardeau), Samu (Itzan Escamilla), Ander (Arón Piper), Rebeka (Claudia Salas), Cayetana (Georgina Amorós), and Omar (Omar Ayuso) is bittersweet. While they may be getting another shot at repeating their final year, their classmates Carla, Lu, Nadia, and Valerio have moved on to bigger and better things. It’s a bummer to lose such a great group of characters, but you almost don’t feel their absence when the new crop of students takes their place, flips the world upside down for current students, and simultaneously ushers in a brand new mystery.
The new mystery anchors the story, and like in seasons past, it plays out with flashbacks that lead up to the fated moment.
However, unlike in previous seasons, we find out pretty early on who is at the center of the mystery with the how remaining the big question mark.
But there’s no question about whether the Blanco family is involved.
As Ander tells the investigator, the toxic family’s arrival “tainted everything.”
Benjamin (Diego Martin) is the extremely rich new school director. He comes in like a bulldozer with big plans to rehabilitate Las Encinas and its reputation after a tumultuous few years that led to two student deaths. He begins his reign by setting his sights on Samu and Omar, who he doesn’t believe belong at the elite school.
It’s honestly surprising anyone wants to send their children to get an education there at this point.
Benjamin doesn’t waste any time making changes, but with his focus solely on “discipline, excellence, and achievement,” he fails to realize that his family’s arrival brings the bulk of the drama.
Immediately, you begin to wonder how Benjamin plans to fix a whole school if he can’t even control his own children — Ari (Carla Diaz), Patrick (Manu Rios), and Mencia (Martina Cariddi).
Benjamin has a fraught relationship with his youngest, Mencia, who has brought the family pain in the past and continues to rebel and defy her father at every turn.
She has a genuine connection with new girlfriend, Rebeka, but the relationship stirs up even more problems for Mencia as Benjamin disapproves and thinks Rebe is a bad influence considering her mother’s reputation as a drug kingpin.
Little does he know, Mencia has gotten into a world of trouble all on her own.
While Rebe’s relationship with Mencia grows into one of the purest this season, following Samu’s betrayal last season, she’s understandably closed off and cautious with her heart.
Ander and Omar are still going strong but find their relationship is tested in unexpected ways when they invite Patrick, Benjamin’s son, into the fold.
Patrick knows the power he wields over them and intentionally meddles in their lives, but there’s also much more to him than meets the eye.
Ari is Benjamin’s star child who respects and listens to her father, but to her peers, she’s the resident mean girl who is oftentimes uptight and has a chip on her shoulder.
She catches the eye of both Samu and Guzman, which fractures their budding friendship. These two have always fought over women, but last time, Samu was being protective over his best friend, Nadia, who Guzman is still dating when the season commences.
Nadia appears only via video chat from her New York apartment, and their relationship allows the series to explore the trials and tribulations of a long-distance relationship that’s tested as temptation lurks right around the corner for Guzman.
While Guzman stands a chance with Ari based solely on social class and standing, Ari and Samu connect unexpectedly in an academic setting.
Who will the love triangle favor in the end?
Additionally, the school has attracted the youngest royal heir in Europe, Prince Philippe (Pol Granch). The series flips the classic “princess and the pauper” narrative to “prince and the pauper” as he connects with the school’s janitor Cayetana, making all of her fantasies come true.
But as the saying goes, “be careful what you wish for” as this fairytale quickly turns into a nightmare when it’s revealed the prince has a dark secret, and Cayetana’s past secrets with the late Polo and Valerio come back to haunt her.
Overall, you know exactly what you’re getting into when you press play on the fourth season. The writers have managed to deliver yet another incredibly intoxicating season about a group of lost souls looking for a purpose and tapping into the extreme lengths they’ll go to numb their pain.
Elite hits Netflix on Friday, June 18 with eight brand-new episodes.
*This review is based on the first four episodes of season 4 that were available to the press*
TV Reviews4 days ago
Good Girls Series Finale Review – I’m the Boss (4×15 and 4×16)
Coffee Table News1 week ago
NBC 2021-2022 Fall Premiere Dates – Here’s When #OneChicago Shows Return
Lifestyle2 weeks ago
Krispy Kreme’s Birthday Deal Gets You $1 Doughnuts
Big Brother5 days ago
Big Brother Recap: Smells Like French Toast (23×06)
Lifestyle2 weeks ago
Best and Worst Cities to Live In for Remote Workers
Dynasty3 days ago
Dynasty Review – A Public Forum for All Her Lies (4×11)
Big Brother4 days ago
Big Brother Recap: Eviction Night #2 (23×07)
Dynasty3 weeks ago
Who Will Die on Dynasty Season 4?