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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend – I Need To Find My Frenemy (4×15)

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With the end nearing, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend really put a rush on the storyline. Josh admitted his feelings to Becks within the first 10 minutes of the episode, and I was about as shocked as Rebecca!

She’s so shocked by his love proposal she runs all the way to work. I kind of forgot she still worked at the pretzel place…I guess when you own your own store, you can step away whenever to attempt another dream?

Again, still bummed her dreams of musical theater were dashed. Although, it doesn’t seem like she’s giving up entirely! She knows passions and dreams take time to build.

She is faced with a confusion of love columns thanks to Darryl and AJ. She really can’t decide between the three men. I can’t help but get the sense that it’s going to be either Nathaniel or Greg. I’m not confident enough to put my money on one of them though, so get back to me by the end of her trio of dates.

I am, however, impressed by the character development of each man. They truly have evolved and I no longer have a serious desire for her to end up with one of them specifically. Congrats guys! You’ve all come a long way from your respective first season.

Paula’s first day at the job has her glowing tremendously. She’s taken back with her coworkers and the space itself, and how they truly seem to respect her worth. Despite believing she needed to buy a million dollar suit in order to fit in, she’s pleasantly surprised to hear they don’t care about her uniform.

So happy Paula’s career is coming together, her hard work is the ultimate pay off, and she deserves it entirely.

During a girls lunch, Valencia and Heather discuss their relationship issues. Valencia’s still not getting the rock she wants, and Heather feels like she has to rock Hector like he’s a baby.

When Rebecca rushes in saying she’s unable to join for lunch, no surprise to them — the shade from Heather is fantastic, truly — she proposes they run away to Vegas together.

Before the next episode is completely overrun by the boys, they obviously had to devote an entire episode to Rebecca and her girl gang.

Let me just say, the slow walk through the casino, and the even slowed down slow walk, were priceless. Great editing skills!

Rebecca is tasked with the job of bringing her frenemy Audra Levine (is there a reason her name sounds very similar to Avril Lavigne?) back to her senses and her respective life with triplets and a stressed-out husband.

She’s of course tied up with an anti-semitic man she met at the casino who’s involved with the wrong group or people. Paula buys into the game he sorely lost and kicks ass. No surprise there, Paula’s just kicking double ass in life and in her career.

I honestly want to know how much money Paula won! Based on the fact that she was able to buy five of those suits, she must have won millions!

Meanwhile, the trio is having a powwow trying to decide how to get Rebecca to choose. Much better than their past techniques of fists and yelling! They really have evolved.

Darryl brings Rebecca to the restaurant to hear the men’s three-date proposal, which of course offers a cliffhanger. BUT, we all know she’s going to say yes to these three dates.

I think the show has been a true testament to Rebecca’s growth as a character. She needed to find herself and work through her mental illness, which she has done quite well! And then her love life follows, so I don’t believe the writers are going to be that cruel and leave us without an answer to one of the men.

Who are you putting your money on?

Additional Sidenotes:

  • Thank. God. they touched on the issue of “daddy” as a nickname. Lana Del Rey, I’m sorry but that’s just not a nickname that should be used in a relationship. I guess in the bedroom, that’s your thing, but Heather put it well. They are two grown adults who don’t need to rely on each other but need to work together to make the relationship successful.
  • Valencia’s realization that she could be the one to propose was so great. Defying gender roles!
  • Do people really randomly FaceTime people they haven’t talked to in a while?
  • White Josh’s speech to Greg about how he and Rebecca have something special was beautiful. We all need a White Josh in our life, someone who notices when you’ve found the one or at least someone who makes you the happiest you have ever been.
  • Teasing me with that gay shit! I was slightly sitting on the edge of my bed hoping Audra and Rebecca would give each other one little kiss.
  • “AJ you’re a damn bitch.”
  • The musical rap number by Rebecca and Audra was great. The Yiddish slang included worked perfectly, and I love how it was shot in an old music video style. The style expected from a group of struggling wannabe rappers.

Editorials

Angel the Series: Why The Series is The King of Found Family Shows

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Angel the Series/ The WB

Spoilers for the entirety of “Angel the Series” below

Angel the Series

Angel the Series Season 5

Everybody wants to be a part of something; a team, a club, a gang, a family. It’s human nature to want to connect to others, and yet rarely in life does a person happen upon that perfect blend of acceptance and love that they seek.

But we can find it on television!

There is a long history of television shows that feature “found families,” better known as groups of people that aren’t related by blood but through experiences. These groups bond over time and create close-knit units that resemble a family.

There are many examples: Cheers, Friends, The Office, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, crime procedurals like Law and Order, even Scooby-Doo! All of these are series about a group of people who find each other and create that perfect unit that understands and accepts you in a way that you can’t find elsewhere; a place where everybody knows your name.

Cheers/NBC Universal

Cheers NBC Universal

I find, however, that as ironic as it may seem, found family shows rarely reflect the nature of what actually being a family means. I suppose this is only natural considering the escapist nature of many of these shows, but still, sometimes I find shows touting the values of family without diving into what it really means to be one.

These series show internal conflicts and arguments within each group to test the limits of their bonds. Sometimes characters disagree with each other, lie to each other, or say hurtful things, but an overwhelming amount of these conflicts get resolved with an apology and a hug.

Buffy exemplifies this idea several times throughout its run, most notably at the end of its fourth season. The core group of friends, Buffy, Willow, and Xander have a huge argument, but soon after come together and hug it out. A few scenes later they, quite literally, become one greater being to defeat the big bad of the season heavily symbolizing the nature of their relationship. They are stronger as one unit, and they will always be there for each other.

Our real families don’t always get along this well or reconcile so easily. These series provide ideal units that always stay together when their limits are tested, but real-life families don’t just test the limits of their bond, they break them. Therefore, the harsher a show attempts to break a family apart, the further a show can dive into what it actually means to be one. No show breaks limits like Angel the Series.

Angel, like so many other found family series, takes a group of outcasts and brings them closer to each other through their adventures and experiences until they consider each other family.

Angel, a vampire with a murderous past who is attempting to redeem himself after gaining a soul, is at the center of the group. He hires Cordelia, an aspiring actress, Wesley, an expert on all things mystical, and Gunn, a vampire hunter from the streets, to help him fight monsters and save lives in the city of Los Angeles. As their adventures progress, they create the standard television “found family” (which will eventually also include Fred, a brilliant scientist, Lorne, a demon who can read your aura when you sing, Angel’s son, Connor, and Spike, basically Angel’s vampiric brother).

Angel goes so far as to make this overt by having Angel claim he is Cordelia’s family at the end of season one, with her returning the sentiment in the closing moments when she urges Angel not to be embarrassed for drinking some blood in front of her; she doesn’t judge his vampiric needs because they are family. They’ve had their ups and downs, sure, but in the end, they are there for each other.

Angel

Angel Season 1 “The Ring”

That is until Angel fractures the family by kicking everyone out of his house. Angel is separated from the group for half of the second season, and when he does finally apologize and return, he is only allowed back into the group if he agrees to take a secondary role to Wesley.

While Angel is forgiven, the way he broke their trust isn’t forgotten and several comments are thrown at Angel regarding his lack of familiarity with the current unit. From this point onwards, Angel never fully regains Gunn’s trust as a friend, and due to Wesley’s position as the new leader, he and Angel have a building conflict that erupts when Wesley, trying to avoid a terrible prophecy, kidnaps Angel’s newborn son, Connor.

The series continues to push these people into situations where the absolute worst parts of them aren’t just exposed but personified. After the kidnapping, Angel doesn’t just threaten to kill Wesley, he attempts to. Gunn commits murder against Fred’s wishes, breaking her illusion as to who he is and what he is capable of. Connor, after growing up in a hell dimension and developing many personal demons, drops his own father into the ocean in a metal crate.

The team willingly releases Angelus (Angel’s murderous past self) to help them defeat an all-powerful beast. This series has a much less overt “we are family” message, and instead develops a subtle allusion to the fact that these people consistently use their demons to solve problems.

Angel

Angel Season 5 “Power Play”

And who better to let your demons loose on than your family? There are moments that happen between families that are so ugly we’d only ever let them be seen by our families. Sometimes these actions lead to apologies, often they don’t, and even more often those apologies lead to the cycle repeating. Angel may be a show about literal demons but the parallels we can draw to make it a series that anyone can relate to, especially those audience members who have wished their families were a bit more perfect.

Angel himself wishes his family was more perfect. While at the bottom of the ocean (he’s unable to die due to his vampire superpowers), he passes the agonizing time by fantasizing about the perfect family dinner which includes him and Cordelia happy, Gunn and Fred, together, and Wesley is back at the table – he’s sharing a meal with the people he loves. It is a scene directly out of any other found family show. But here, like in reality, this family is a fantasy.

Angel

Angel Season 4 “Deep Down”

When Wesley pulls Angel out of the ocean, there is no reconciliation. He drops Angel off with the rest of the group and immediately retreats. When Angel comes face to face with Connor, they argue and fight, and the scene ends with Angel saying, “I love you, Connor. Now get out of my house.”

None of these scenes feel good to watch. Unlike so many other found family shows, Angel doesn’t provide its audience with the comfort of family, but the reality of it. It doesn’t always feel good to be part of your family or the one you’ve chosen. Families get angry and livid. After all these events, the characters in Angel harbor feelings towards each other that bend quite a ways away from love. Some of them not only dislike each other, they actively can’t stand one another. Trust isn’t a given, and they hit each other much more than they ever hug each other.

Angel

Angel Season 4 “Soulless”

Yet the love and commitment within this group prevails. Despite Angel threatening to kill Wesley if he returned, Wesley still spends months searching the ocean for Angel. Angel still loves Connor while knowing that Connor wanted him to suffer for eternity. In the final season, the team still accepts Gunn after he makes a decision that results in Fred’s death. The acceptance of these crushing low points and the choice to love in spite of them is what separates Angel’s family from the rest. The past is never forgotten, and in many cases not even forgiven, but this only proves their strength as a unit. Despite the disastrous team they have made and despite the wedges that have driven them apart, they still stand together. If none of those horrible conflicts could tear these people apart, well, nothing can.

Audiences, myself included, watch these found family shows for escapism. We enter a blissful place where everyone is loved and conflict pushes people closer together instead of pulling them apart. Angel reminds us that’s not how real life works. Sometimes we make each other suffer.

By not pandering to our fantasy, Angel creates a refreshingly realistic portrayal of family and proves how powerful your own family unit can be even with all its imperfections, providing a better perspective on the families we have in real life. This is why Angel is the king of found family shows.

The final scene of the series shows four people, most of whom at some point have tried to kill each other, standing side by side in the rain. They aren’t a perfect unit, they aren’t about to become one being, proving how strong their bonds are. Instead, they are four flawed individuals with their own goals, own beliefs, own morals, and own reasons for being there, who still choose to stand side by side in the rain, ready to fight and die together.

Angel

Angel Season Five “Not Fade Away”

If that’s not a family, I don’t know what it is.

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Grey’s Anatomy – Back in the Saddle (16×02)

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Unfortunately, this week was a lackluster episode for Grey’s. This isn’t surprising considering the season premiere was such a huge event for us all.

Mer’s still on trash pick-up duty, Alex and Richard are still trying to maintain a semblance of normalcy at their new hospital, and Bailey’s back to teaching after Katherine demoted her.

Oh, but hey Jo’s back and better than ever, and she’s a hot commodity! She’s already looking better, and back to her chipper-self with the help of Alex. Already throwing out ultimatums to Bailey and making herself a general surgeon. Good on you Jo! Show them what you’re worth.

While Jo’s rising the ranks, the other interns are fighting to be the next Alex and Meredith. Meredith is now pulling an Izzie and Heather Brooks, helping desperate patients in the parking lot of the hospital.

We love a woman who puts her career at risk to help the less fortunate, and apparently, Andrew does too, “You’re just very very sexy when you’re about to burn your whole life down.”

She successfully pulls the assistance of Schmidt and Avery to diagnose her parole officer’s lymph node cancer. And, she’s working on publishing her findings of the lack of health insurance for the lower class. No matter what, you can’t stop Meredith Grey from working!

Addressing current nationwide issues is Grey’s forte. With the future election on the horizon, the question of healthcare is a huge cause for concern for many of the middle and lower classes. It’ll be interesting to see how the show lays out the foundation of this issue while the democratic debates continue doing the same. Maybe Shonda is a fortune teller and knows the fate of our nation, that would be no surprise.

Meanwhile, Amelia’s struggling with the decision of whether to terminate the pregnancy. She tells Link about the pregnancy and he’s stunned. They both have challenges with their past and fear bringing a child into the world. Link’s fears are too wholesome, and thankfully Jo helped him realize that he would make a great father. The child better have his hair!

It may appear the show enjoys throwing around pregnancy announcements like they do unsuspecting deaths, but this one is different. Though, they better not throw in a plot twist and tell us it’s Owen’s because then we’ll be having a hissy fit. Amelia’s tragedy with Christopher left her with a lot of grief, so we hope this is an easy pregnancy, drama free.

Link’s stable for her, and she deserves stability.

Teddy’s lack of visibility must be attributed to an underlying reason from her portraying actress Kim Raver. Any news? All I can say is I miss Teddy.

The conflict between Tom and Owen is elementary, but Tom has every right to be angry with Owen. Owen just comes in after breaking Teddy’s heart time after time. There can’t be more drama for Owen and Teddy, otherwise, that would just be mean.

Poor Tom trying to assert his dominance as Owen’s boss, and by the end, he’s the one on his knees. Certainly, Owen had the help of the defibrillator to accidentally shock Tom to his knees, ouch.

Tom’s restraining order against Owen is extremely excessive but again warranted. At least he’s not taking his anger out on Teddy.

Richard’s mini sentimental monologue to Alex about why Grey Sloan Memorial is his home is worthy of a final scene voiceover. I felt that one close to my heart.

The separation in hospitals is like a spoof of earlier seasons with the battle against Mercy West. How long is this going to last? I’m not a huge fan of the split storylines.

What do you think is next for the doctors? Will Meredith’s license be taken away? How will Alex and Richard eventually return to the hospital? And is Link really the father of Amelia’s child?

Please leave your thoughts below!

Additional Sidenotes:

  • Damn Maggie, tell us how you really feel. Maggie’s really going downhill since her relationship with Jackson, but it looks like Jackson’s really on the uprise with Vic.
  • #Freedom, iconic and classic.
  • Ranked number one in mortality rate, patient dissatisfaction, and facilities. What a sad result for Alex and Richard.
  • Pretty sure texting a guy to drop a pregnancy announcement is already a thing.
  • “We’d make an amazing kid and I kinda want to meet that kid.”
  • Helm’s old crush on Meredith has manifested into wanting to now become Meredith! “I’m so Meredith Grey.”
  • When did that room become a plant room? Wasn’t it originally just a blank room for relaxation? Either way, I want one!
  • “I’m really sorry to bother you but I think that guy’s dead.”
  • Grey’s Happy Patient Tally continues with a total of 3!

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Emergence – Camera Wheelbarrow Tiger Pillow (1×02)

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Emergence Camera Wheelbarrow Tiger Pillow Review

The mystery surrounding Piper thickens on Emergence Season 1 Episode 2 as we try to figure out who she is, where she came from, and who is after her.

There’s a great deal of suspense as Jo, Chris, and even Benny, peel back the layers of the mysterious plane crash and its lone survivor.

But this is one mystery that we’re not going to be able to crack alone.

It ‘s almost better to sit back and enjoy the episode for what it is than try to figure out what’s happening.

The plot remains vague but that’s on purpose — we’ll get all the answers when the time is right.

We could wrack our brains coming up with theories, but what’s that going to do for us?

We know a lot, but we don’t know enough to back up any of our theories.

For Emergence to remain as intriguing throughout the season as it was on Emergence Season 1 Episode 1, it has to keep some of its cards close to the chest.

Read the full TV Fanatic review HERE!

 

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