Grand Hotel is picking up the pace and raising the stakes.
Sky Garibaldi’s disappearance has started to fall to the backburner amidst all these juicy telenovela-like twists.
In just one short hour (or 45 minutes if you’re counting commercials), Theresa infiltrated the Riviera Grand and set her sights on Felix, who Santiago learned was hiding out in the forbidden 606 room, presumably the room that Beatriz died in.
After this episode, it’s unclear which man should be trusted.
Both have found themselves in messy situations for different reasons.
Felix allegedly stole millions, which pissed a lot of people off. Santiago may have been responsible for turning him in, and yes, it’s possible his crush on Gigi played some kind of role, in his decision, but Felix deserved what was coming his way.
However, Santiago’s character is also questioned when he attacks Felix for suggesting that a young woman like Beatriz would have never suffered a heart attack. Felix accuses Santiago of killing his wife, triggering an emotional response from him. Again, Felix deserved the punch in the face as he was purposefully provoking Santiago to later spin a sob story about how Gigi’s new husband has been the bad guy all along in a sad attempt to win her back, but it also shows that there’s a much darker side to Santiago that we haven’t tapped into yet.
Santiago’s aggressive reaction could have been a response to hearing the man he loathed talk negatively about his late wife. But, it could also be an admission of guilt. Whatever it is, it’s obvious that there’s more to Beatriz’s death than meets the eye.
I wasn’t convinced she died of a heart attack either, but I’m not sure that Santiago was the one to kill her simply to get the rights to the hotel and to marry Gigi.
Gigi’s naiveness when it came to Felix was frustrating. She kept saying that Felix’s charms weren’t working on her but it didn’t take a lot for her to lose all faith in Santiago. And at the end of the day, she helped her ex-husband escape with the promos suggesting that she might run away with him to “figure things out.”
Santiago may have been lying about a lot of stuff but he never abandoned his family.
The meaning “it’s complicated” takes on a whole other meaning in this hotel.
Gigi’s hypocritical ways were also underlined with Felix’s return. She’s been icing out Santiago because he failed to tell her about the shady deals with Theresa and Mateo, but she also kept Felix’s return a secret.
And in addition to helping her daughter’s aid a fugitive, she even lent him Santiago’s nice clothes.
Santiago’s attempts to please Gigi backfired when it came to getting rid of Theresa.
He felt so guilty about upsetting his wife that he refused Theresa’s offer to turn over Felix.
Instead, Santiago took the high road allowing Felix to make a break for it and ended up getting stuck with Theresa permanently.
Are you happy now, Gigi? Theresa isn’t going to be some off-screen villain anymore; she’s requesting an office space in the hotel she’s investing in.
Mateo’s abduction fell flat as it didn’t reveal anything we didn’t already know about him. He’s loyal to Theresa because she turned his life around and his fear of what she will do if he disobeys her has now turned him into her lackey.
Mateo lost any and all depth when he began following her around like a little puppy. It’s amazing that he’s gone from wielding all the power at the Riviera Grand to being nothing more than an assistant who doesn’t say much.
There’s a lot of questionable things happening at the Riviera Grand, but the twins trying to run away with their father and comparing life on the run to a “semester abroad,” is pretty high on that list.
Are these two serious?
Yoli always seemed like the brighter of the two, but she lost all of my admiration when she tried to persuade her girlfriend into running away with her and her fugitive father.
Then, instead of letting it go when Marisa told her she wasn’t interested, Yoli tried to make her feel guilty about it.
What makes Yoli think someone could just uproot their life the moment she wants them too?
Marisa didn’t owe Yoli any explanation, and I’m not buying that she wasn’t interested because she was undocumented.
What a terrible way to weave in a real-life situation.
Marisa would have been a more respectable character if she had just stuck to her guns and told Yoli she didn’t want to be involved with this messy family drama.
No sane person would agree to something so risky and dangerous regardless of immigration status.
Danny’s investigation into his sister Sky is exposing a lot more than he bargained for.
Most of the shady dealings were mentioned previously but are news to him and the detective he’s working with.
Basically, with a little attention, they’ve figured out that Mateo and Santiago are both working in organized crime within the hotel, which could be the same thing Sky “found” right before she disappeared.
And since the Biscayne Crime Syndicate oftentimes kidnaps people for ransom, there’s a huge chance Sky might still be alive.
Personally, I think having Sky’s disappearance resolve itself during the season finale episode seems a little rushed.
Then again, Danny’s cover has been blown and he was fired from the hotel.
Whatever spell Alicia put him under, it’s caused him to act with his heart and not his brain, abandoning his original goal and altering the plan to include her.
Unfortunately, taking Jason’s advice seemingly backfired.
After finding out that Danny lied about having a girlfriend and meeting said girlfriend in the lobby, Alicia had it with the lies.
When Danny told her that he took the job to launch his own investigation into his sister’s disappearance and that he believed her father was involved, Alicia basically shut down.
Danny should have expected it as he accused her family while also admitting that he’d lied to her since the beginning of their relationship.
Heather wasn’t needed to blow Danny’s cover — he managed it all on his own.
In fact, Heather helped his cause by convincing Alicia that his heart was in the right place.
We all thought she was going to be a vindictive, crazy ex-girlfriend when in reality, she was hurt and wanted some answers.
Will Alicia be more observant now after hearing Danny’s musings and realize that he’s been right all along?
Javi returned from rehab and in an effort to avoid all triggers, channeled his attention into helping Jason get lucky with the ladies.
Jason’s your typical nice-guy-next-door, so it wasn’t surprising that he wasn’t interested in lying to the ladies to get them into bed.
However, he really needed to cleanse his palate of Ingrid.
Coincidentally, hooking up with another girl may have inadvertently gotten Jason out of the friend-zone with Ingrid.
She seemed into him when she saw him leave the girl’s room the next day with his shirt unbuttoned.
The fact that Ingrid lost both Javi and Mateo in the same day could have a lot to do with her feelings.
She’s all alone now and would likely want someone to mend her broken heart.
I’ll leave you all with a theory: Santiago said no one had the key to room 606, but Yoli did. Maybe it’s because she dated Sky? Maybe Sky made multiple copies and the key that Danny found in her locker is also to the same room. It’s possible that Sky could have known the real reason Beatriz died, which is why she had the obituary. Santiago could have “taken care of her” because she knew too much.
What do you think?
Is that the last we’ve seen of Felix?
Will Gigi leave with him?
Is Sky alive?
Will Alicia forgive Danny?
10 Best Lessons The Good Place Taught Us
For a show focusing on what happens after death, it sure has a lot to teach us about life.
The Good Place was bursting with lessons and teachable moments that were thrown at us in a variety of ways: Eleanor, Chidi, Tahani, and Jason’s experiences in the faux Good Place, Chidi’s philosophy lessons, Michael’s trial-and-error of understanding humanity, and several hundred Janet reboots.
Not all of the lessons were equal but they were equally as important, and we’ll forever be grateful that the show put them on our radar and helped us become better people.
Join us in reflecting on the lessons we’ve learned from the best, smartest, and most well-written show of the 2010s.
Lesson #1 – Whatever you think you know about your life, you’re probably wrong.
Time after time we thought we had The Good Place figured out, only for it to pull the rug out from under us again and again. Take a moment and you’ll notice the same thing tends to happen in our real lives. Did you schedule out your entire week? Too bad an ant colony is planning an invasion on your kitchen Wednesday. Did you finally find the best pizza in the city? Just wait until you find out it’s a drug front. Think your successful friend is trying to help you move up in the office? Sorry, he’s actually an evil demon relentlessly torturing you.
The Good Place taught us that not only are things not always what they seem, but that reality is not even close to what we think. Apples to oranges is really more like apples to your insurance card. So get ready to roll with the punches and stay on your toes – you never know what’s coming next.
Lesson #2 – Change is possible, but it’s work.
Eleanor, Chidi, Tahani, and Jason each had to change themselves if they wanted to earn a spot in the Good Place. It wasn’t easy, though. They had to continually work at improving over 800 years of time, with demons, both personal and literal, trying to drag them down. But they put in the work and time to improve, and most importantly, they didn’t leave each other behind.
They never jumped on each other from slip-ups or told the other they were worthless because they were bad people in the past. They worked hard, both individually and together, to change for the Good. Even Michael, the demon who began the series torturing them, became a force for good, and if Michael can do it, so can you.
Lesson #3 – Just because you think you’re a good person doesn’t mean you are.
Chidi and Tahani both completely believed they had earned paradise, as did our recent buddy Brent in season 4. Unfortunately for them, they were secretly in the Bad Place all along, proving definitely that just because you think you’re a good person, doesn’t mean anyone else does. Tahani and Brent both need some more self-awareness and a better understanding of what being “good” entails, but Chidi only ever had the best intentions at heart and he still constantly caused pain and dismay to those around him through his indecision. We certainly took a look in the mirror after these revelations, not to make sure we were good people, but to find out what parts of ourselves weren’t good at how we could adjust them.
Lesson #4 – We make our own meaning.
Whether it’s helping other people, partying like there is no tomorrow, or building a relationship, we make our own meaning in life. The humans of the Good Place are perpetually screwed, and yet they continue helping each other, comforting each other, laughing together, and building their bonds. When demons are coming for them, they celebrate. When they’re bound for hell, they spend time trying to save others from the same fate. When they discover soulmates aren’t real, they make them anyway. When everything seems lost in our own lives, we think of The Good Place to remind us that we can find a purpose in all that madness, and be our best selves in the process.
Lesson #5 – Almond milk is bad for the environment.
When Chidi discovers he’s in the Bad Place, he believes he knows the reason: he drank almond milk despite knowing it was bad for the environment. We never knew this, but have totally removed almond milk from our diets ever since. Chidi was initially derided for believing this was the reason he was sent to the Bad Place, but we’ve learned in the back half of the series that small, seemingly inconsequential transgressions (such as drinking almond milk) are contributing to the mass rejection of humans from the Good Place. It’s difficult to be good in a world that has become so complicated that the simple act of drinking almond milk loses you points, and we’ve been on the lookout for the unseen consequences behind our innocent actions ever since.
Lesson #6 – Own who you are (even if it’s a Jaguars fan)
While change and betterment were at the core of The Good Place, Eleanor, Chidi, Tahani, and Jason only made progress at becoming better people when they acknowledged and accepted their flaws.
The four humans weren’t bad people, per se, they were simply products of their environment who oftentimes let their insecurities get the best of them. But those qualities also made them unique and valuable. They were just “bad enough” that they could change, but they also needed those qualities in order to change. Change requires acknowledgment of the problem, acceptance of those flaws, and the desire to become better. The humans did all of that and wore their flaws like badges of honor to improve and grow in the afterlife.
However, improvement never required them to become different people. They channeled their flaws and turned them into positives. Even after becoming better, those fundamentals of who they were and what made them the characters we love were still there; Eleanor’s raunchiness, Chidi’s indecisiveness, Jason’s simultaneously dopeness and dopey-ness, and Tahani’s need for approval. Their experiences came in handy many times when dealing with demons and trying to save the world ie. Eleanor’s wit and skepticism were instrumental in continuously cracking the mystery that the Good Place was really the Bad Place. It was because of who they were that they were able to make such strides in the afterlife, flaws and all.
Lesson #7 – Empathy goes a long way
When the series began, Michal was a demon from the Bad Place who enjoyed causing pain to the four humans, but as time went on and he grew closer to the humans, he began to learn and understand what it meant to be human. He became empathetic to their experiences, their struggles, and their desire to change.
The best example of this is when Michael agrees to help them get to the judge so they can present their case of why they deserve to be in the Good Place. When he realized they only had four badges to get through the portal, he told Eleanor that he finally solved “The Trolley Problem” and sacrificed himself by putting his friends first. He understood how hard they’ve worked to become better people and knew they deserved a shot at proving it.
In a similar fashion, Janet, a robot, also learned to be human. After more than dozens of reboots, she becomes a super robot that not only knows all the answers to every question in the universe but also starts to understand the human experience. She begins to display human emotions like love (mostly for Jason) she understands feelings of sadness, happiness, and everything in between, and she has the capacity to put herself in someone else’s shoes. Compassion and empathy are at the core of what makes us human.
Lesson #8 – Frozen yogurt really is delicious
Michael rebooted his neighborhood many times after it seemed to fail, but one thing that was constant was the frozen yogurt shops. Michael put it in there as a form of torture, but let’s be real, frozen yogurt is hardly torture. As Michael explained, humans excel at “taking something and ruining it a little so you can have more of it,” and it may not be ice cream, but froyo is delicious in its own right (fight me).
In fact, the invention of froyo single-handedly proves humans are geniuses and thus, froyo should be eaten and enjoyed in abundance. If there is an afterlife with an unlimited menu of flavors, that’s enough to convince us to be our best selves every single day. When Eleanor confronts Michael about all the froyo shops, he even admits it by replying, “I’ve come to really like frozen yogurt.”
Lesson # 9 – Know when it’s time to let go and move on
In the second to last episode of the series, Ted Danson’s character Michael realizes that he’s fulfilled his purpose. He went from being a demon who tried to innovate the torture experience for humans sentenced to the Bad Place, befriended them, became a better person, and built a new afterlife system with their help to save all of humanity. Initially, he tries to sabotage Vicki from taking his job but eventually accepts that she’s better at it than he is and hands over the reins, which is a key lesson.
It’s imperative that one understands when their path has run its course, when it’s time to walk away from something that no longer serves them, or when it’s time to find something new and challenging. Now, Michael is walking into the unknown and not knowing what waits for him on the proverbial other side, which is scary, but it’s also a necessary part of life. As humans, we are constantly reinventing ourselves and searching for our next journey. Sometimes, there’s magic with accepting and “going with the flow.”
Lesson #10 – If it’s meant to be, it’ll be
No, I’m not singing the Florida Georgia Line and Bebe Rexha song, although, it is fitting. I’m talking about trusting that whatever is meant for you will find you. Soulmates don’t exist in the afterlife, but that never stopped Eleanor and Chidi from falling in love and finding each other over and over again after almost 800 reboots. They were meant to be, it was written in the stars, call it whatever you want, but they always found a way back to each other, even if they didn’t have their memories.
At one point, the only thing Chidi was ever sure of was his love for Eleanor. When he made the sacrifice to get rebooted to save all of humanity, it’s because they both believed that they would be reunited again. It’s the very simple idea of trusting what the universe has planned for us and not trying to control your destiny. When Michael was trying to succeed with his neighborhood, he did everything in his power to prevent Chidi and Eleanor from meeting and finding each other and somehow, they always did. Okay, cue the FGL + Bebe song, baby.
Why The Game of Thrones Theme Song is So Iconic and Good
Game of Thrones ‘ theme song rules.
I didn’t even watch the show, but when I hear this song, even I’m thinking, “Oh yeah time for some epic s***!” Ramin Djawadi is an awesome composer (obligatory Person of Interest shout out), and the Game of Thrones theme song is another excellent piece by him.
It follows a standard “epic music” formula to a T.
This isn’t a criticism. Something normally becomes standard because it works, after all, so there is nothing wrong with using patterns that have historically worked to assist you in crafting the mood you’re trying to set.
If you wanted to write a Christmas song, for example, you could throw in some jingle bells. We identify jingle bells with the season, so that’s an easy way to get the spirit of your music across (We purposely saved this article for after Christmas so you wouldn’t go insane suddenly hearing jingle bells in every single song). When it comes to scoring, a clear depiction of the tone you’re trying to set is key.
So how do you write an epic theme song like Game of Thrones? Let’s write one together!
Step 1: Pick three or four standard chords to use, normally starting on a minor chord and moving to major chords before returning to base.
I picked D minor, Bb Major, F Major, and C Major (or i, VI, III, and VII)
Step 2: Create an energetic riff outlining the first chord of whatever key your piece will be in, or just play the root of your chord in an energetic syncopated manner ala “He’s a Pirate” from Pirates of the Caribbean
Step 3: Write a melody that also outlines your chords, often with quick steps leading into your next chord to give the melody energy, and simply have your bass line play the root of each of your chords. Have a lowkey drum keeping the beat.
Step 4: Repeat your melody either an octave higher or by moving upwards to a new key and emphasize the drums.
BOOM you have an epic theme song.
Of course, you can add other supporting melodies and instruments to make it sound even more epic!
On top of this basic formula, however, Game of Thrones’ theme does some excellent work to achieve its primary goal in setting the tone.
The decision to leave out brass instruments contributes to the solemness of the series, as brass instruments in pieces like these are often naturally heroic sounding. The chamber choir lends an air of old school medieval church times, giving the song a Godly presence. The mix up of the major chord in the beginning riff also prepares the viewer for unexpected twists in the upcoming narrative. This is excellent storytelling through music all around.
The way it builds on its initial riff (as the melody is basically just the riff at a slower pace) is also smart writing and a brilliant way to make the tune as memorable as possible.
These are the decisions that turn a piece from “generic epic” into “actually epic.” Care and thought matter in a score, and it’s what separates Djawadi from other composers while also allowing Game of Thrones’ theme song to stand out even amongst similar pieces.
The beating drums, the shifts up an octave or into a different key, the orchestration; all these facets contribute to the feel that you’re moving forward and into an epic battle, which is why we feel like something big is about to go down when Game of Thrones starts up.
Game of Thrones’ theme does a particularly great job of conveying that epic feeling. Now if only I had enjoyed the show as much as I do the music.
For other examples of epic songs that follow this kind of formula, check out the pieces below!
- “He’s A Pirate” Pirates of the Caribbean – Klaus Badelt and Hans Zimmer
- “Arrival to Earth” Transformers – Steve Jablonsky
- “Iron Man 3” Iron Man 3 – Brian Tyler
- “The Avengers” Avengers – Alan Silvestri
- “Titans Spirit” Remember the Titans – Trevor Rabin
- “Ben” National Treasure – Trevor Rabin
- “The Orange Man” Unbreakable – James Newton Howard
Grey’s Anatomy Review – Help Me Through the Night (16×10)
Welcome back to the mid-drama chaos. I’m happy to report the hour contained many elements of the original Grey’s Anatomy and successfully balanced the doctor’s personal lives and good ole surgery, finally!
Something that has been lacking in recent episodes.
A majority of the interns were injured after a car came bulldozing into Joe’s Bar and the rest of the doctors scrambled to have enough hands on deck to piece them back together.
Thankfully Weber and Owen came back to Grey Sloan to lend some helping hands. I’m still curious as to how the writers plan on bringing the doctors all back to one hospital. TBD, apparently.
Everyone was struggling to push aside their personal problems to focus on saving the lives of the interns, and it was a success! There were no interns killed in the making of this episode.
What a nice surprise, considering each intern class has had at least one death!
The focus of the episode remained with an important lesson for Bailey. It’s ok to breakdown but never feel alone, because your friends are always there to hug and support you.
Bailey participated in the “surgery will make me forget all my troubles” motto that many of the doctors seem to unhealthily advocate for.
After her unfortunate miscarriage, she tried to hold onto some semblance of sanity while she directed everyone where to help.
The final scene with Meredith, Weber, and Bailey pulled on many heartstrings. They’ve been there together since day one and this scene only strengthened the reminder that they will always be there for each other, even with this sad exit of Alex.
This lesson reverberated to the rest of the doctors as Teddy and Owen finally found their future together and Koracick made amends with the outcome, Jo fell in love with her stolen baby, and the interns stayed strong for each other through their recovery periods.
Teddy and Owen have been on the on and off since Teddy’s first appearance in Season 6. 10 years we’ve had to wait for this loooong drawn-out love story to finally come to a happy fruition.
Owen’s always been scared to officially commit to Teddy, for fear of messing up their strong bonded friendship, but with the help and wise words of Avery, he realized that if he wanted Teddy to be his forever, the forever included the now.
Amelia and Koracick had their possibility of futures with Teddy and Owen ceased and will now have to look for new storylines. Until Amelia reveals her pregnancy truth, she will remain with Link.
Link is no sloppy seconds though, he’s a pure soul who deserves all the kindness in the world after already being left behind my Meredith.
Speaking of Meredith, if you were among those who could not get on board with Merluca have no fear, the Alex replacement might just be there to swoop in.
He’s already received the stamp of approval by none other than Cristina, the other half of the twisted sisters. The lingering gaze Meredith gave toward the end of the night was a dead give away that she already has her eyes shifting from DeLuca.
Now, I can’t write an entire review without touching on the entire travesty of Alex leaving the show. I’m confused by the ease of “Alex is visiting Iowa.”
How are we expected to just believe he’s there visiting his mom for the rest of the show?! Jo’s going through a bout of baby fever while her husband is living in Iowa indefinitely.
This leaves too much of a plot hole. In my opinion, they should’ve at least sent him to another country (Cristina style) or killed him off. These are harsh requests, but they would make a lot more sense than sending him to another state while his wife is continuing a full plotline.
Meanwhile, we were left with a glimpse of Maggie being served, so no she’s not gone entirely. She doesn’t get off that easy, in fact, the lawsuit against her is by none other than her long lost family, so blood isn’t always thicker than water.
What did you think of this midseason premiere? Were you happy with all the revelations and new drama?
Additional Side Notes:
- Congrats to the newly engaged couple! It only took Owen 10 years to propose to Teddy. Poor Koracick, he really deserves another love interest.
- I’m surprised more of the other doctors haven’t suffered from broken heart syndrome yet, considering the stress they’ve experienced over the entirety of their time on the show.
- “Any other requests from the peanut gallery?” Bailey’s back with the quick wit.
- Helm’s first official love confession to Meredith was so sweet. Now that she’s put out her love request out into the universe, the universe will provide. Finally another lesbian storyline.
- Teddy’s connection with Casey was an emotional one and really reminded us of the lack of mental health programs and aid for veterans. Something that’s been touched on quite often with the representation of Owen and Teddy.
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