Bingeable: Marvel’s Jessica Jones S. 1

By DomoniDomoni

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August we are focusing on Heroines and with The Defenders coming out on the 18th, I figured I should rewatch some of the previous installments to the Marvel Netflix series. So I am breaking down season 1 of Jessica Jones.

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Jessica Jones is a PI with power. She is also a closed off cranky drunk. I still kind of want to be her though. Having lost her whole family to a car accident when she was young, she was adopted by a woman whose only goal was to create good PR for her daughters acting career. As she recovers from the accident, Jessica realizes she has powers. She is incredibly strong. As she witnesses the abuse her adopted sister Trish faces, she uses her strength to protect her and they forge a close bond.

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Now adults, Trish is an icon and has her own radio show and Jessica is a damaged isolated person. When she gets hired to find a missing woman, her investigation leads her to the man who held her captive. Kilgrave is also gifted with powers. He can make anyone do anything with his voice. When he met Jessica he became obsessed  with her and wanted to make her love him. He forced her to kill a woman which somehow broke his control over Jessica. She has been trying to get over it ever since.

Somehow, Jessica began following Luke Cage, the husband of the woman she killed. When she finally meets him, there is a chemistry between them. They become lovers until and eventually they realize they both have powers. Luke is bullet proof and strong.

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As the hunt for Kilgrave continues, Luke finally learns Jessica had a part in killing his wife. Kilgrave convinces Jessica to live with him to protect the people she cares about. He has returned her childhood home to the exact state it was in when her family died. Jessica spends a few days there and tries to get Kilgrave to use his abilities to help people. She eventually realizes he will never be a good person and devises a way to trap him.

They are able to catch him and put him in the Kilgrave proof cage. Jessica finds his parents to try and get a reaction out of him. The plan goes very wrong and he is able to escape. He is able to track down dear old dad to make his powers even stronger to try and control Jessica again. Though his powers do increase, they still don’t affect her.

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Kilgrave is able to control Luke and get him to attack Jessica. She has to shoot him in the head with a shotgun. He gets knocked unconscious and the hospital can’t help him. Marvel’s favorite nurse Claire is there to save the day though. She helps get Luke back to Jessica’s office apartment. Jessica has a moment laying with Luke where she tells his unconscious form how she could have had a future with him and all her regrets. The she leaves him with Claire to go take on Kilgrave again.

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This time when she finally confronts him, he has a large group of people controlled around him. As he tries to escape, he orders them to kill each other. Jessica and Trish try and stop the fighting as she makes her way through the crowd to him. He sees her and yells at them to stop. Jessica stops too. Kilgrave notices Trish and orders her to join him. He tells Jessica, who he thinks is faking being enthralled, that he will keep Trish forever and if he sees her again he will kill her. As Jessica doesn’t react to this, he realizes she is finally under his control again. His obsession with her takes over in his excitement and he tells her how he knows eventually she will really love him. He finally moves close enough for Jessica to grab him, and break his neck. He never did become stronger than her.

Jessica Jones dives into some seriously dark content. Rape and consent are one of the major underlying themes. Looking past the superhero picture, this is a powerful series. The cast was amazing and truly evoked their characters flaws and strengths. I can’t wait for The Defenders and Jessica Jones season 2.

 

 

Wizards Soul By Aki Eda

By Hannah

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Click image to view on Amazon

Wizard’s Soul was started in 2015.  In Japan there are 22 chapters (about four volumes) and it’s considered complete.  In America thirteen chapters have been translated by fans, into English.  There is no talk of an anime.

 

“Wizard’s Soul” is the name of a trading card game that is famous the world over.  This world actually revolves around the game.  Your ability in the game can affect your GPA, your career prospectives, and your social standing.

 

Meet high schooler Manaka Ichinose, who hates the game, but works in a card shop.  She is a quiet girl, who loses every game she plays.  When her father, a weak player, falls for a scam and loses more money than the family could ever afford, Manaka challenges Eita Sakurai, a very strong player, to a best of 5 game.  At stake, either all of his Dueling Points or she will do whatever he wants.  Manaka wins and Sakurai takes it poorly.  Now Manaka must deal with personal rivals, unpleasant memories, and finding love in a world controlled by a card game.

 

Wizard’s Soul should be an action packed manga, with lots of screaming, crazy hair, and gasping in shock when trap cards come into play.  You know, like Yugi-Oh.  Instead it is a calm story about dealing with death, the fact that your crush is a human being too, and the motivations of the different tournament players.

 

I like Manaka.  She sees what she has to do and she does it.  She tries not to hurt anyone any more than she has to, but she doesn’t back away from it either.  She went into this knowing that she would lose a lot.  The friendship she had with other weak players, her crush, and her peace of mind, but she doesn’t quit.  I also like Sakurai.  Watching him deal with his loss, and rooting for Manaka is very satisfying.  He spends half of the story kicking himself for yelling at Manaka, and the other half of the story learning how to be a better player, because the girl he likes is so good.  They are super cute and I am rooting for this couple.

 

The artwork is very detailed and delicate.  Each character looks like a real person in comic form.  No crazy outfits or hairstyles.  The mood is conveyed elegantly and feelings are worn on the character’s sleeves.  The playing cards look fantastical.  I kind of want to have these cards, not to play, but because they make beautiful art.  I would be one of the weak players in this world.  

 

Wizard’s Soul is only categorized as shoujo. A shoujo story is a story marketed towards young teenage girls.  It’s pretty clear why it’s categorized this way.  It deals with emotions and the stress of being a teeager.  I do feel that it should be part of more categories.  School life, for example, because it does depict the high school experience.  Or possibly slice of life, because she is living a fairly normal life most of the time.  Heck, let’s throw it into the shounen category too.  A shounen story is a story marketed towards young men.  It deals with the high stakes of professional card games.  Just because it deals with emotions and has a female lead means it’s a girl comic?

 

I was surprised at how much I like this story.  Card game mangas are not new, neither are love stories, but together, they make a charming story.  Throw in other interesting  players, a high stakes tournament, and a tragic backstory and you have yourself a fun, sometimes heart wrenching read.

 

4 out of 5 stars.

 

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Game of Thrones S. 7 Ep. 5 : Eastwatch

By Domoni

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This episode starts right at the end of last week. Bron pulls Jaime from the water. As they scramble up the bank the flaming field is off in the distance where most of the Lannister army is dead. Bron berates Jaime for being an idiot and charging a queen standing beside her loyal dragon. Mostly because he wants what he was promised and so can;t let Jaime die before he delivers.

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Back across that river, Queen Daenerys addresses the remaining soldiers. Bend the knee or die. This obviously does not sit well with Tyrion, but Khaleesi doesn’t care. Many of the men kneel, but Jerkface Tarly and his son Dickon refuse to submit. Tyrion points out that they didn’t have a problem changing sides before, then suggests they take the black. neither of those sways them and Drogon destroys them. All the other hesitant soldiers quickly bow to their new queen.

 

In King’s Landing, Jaime returns to his sister. SHe asks how many of her soldiers were lost, then dismisses it in the usual manner. She has gold and the support of the iron bank, she can buy mercenaries. Jaime informs her that after watching the dothraki fight, it won’t matter. She rants about Tyrion, then Jaime delivers the Olenna killed Joffrey news. She spits more vile, I should have tortured her vitriol, as Cersei is want to do, then drops the we must fight for our baby bomb. Jaime is back in the game.

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Back on Dragonstone, The Mother of Dragons returns astride Drogon, who lands in front of Jon Snow and does that creepy threatening dragon crawl towards him. Jon just takes off his glove and reaches out to pet the snarly beast. Drogon lets him, and then practically purrs, while a slightly concerned looking queen looks on.  They chat about how killing is an unfortunate part of war that will make life better and then Jorah shows up to return to his pervy lusting after Dany.

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In Winterfell, Bran is warging. His ravens find the white walkers and the King sees him. Send ravens to warn everyone.

At the citadel, Sam is stocking books while a bunch of Maesters discuss the raven from Winterfell’s Maester. Sam has to pipe up that he knew Bran and that cripple boy survived north of the wall longer than anyone and they should believe him, because he himself have seen the army. Sam tells him they have more knowledge in their library then the rest of the world and they should study it to find how to fight the dead. He also reminds them that people listen to them and if they tell all the lords to send their men to the wall to protect it, they will. The archmaester says he will ask for clarification of the note.

Tyrion has a few cups with Varys and is still affected by how willing to cook people the queen has been. Brans message in hand, they meet with the council. SOmehow a plan is made to go get a deadguy to prove that the deadguys are not staying down and get Cersei to agree to stop fighting long enough to kill the dead. So John and Jorah are gonna go north. Tyrion is gonna go see his family.

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Davos smuggles Tyrion into King’s Landing and then heads to flew bottom. Bron brings Jaime down to the room of dragon skulls to train. No wait, it’s to see his brother. Jaime looks pissed, you killed daddy. Tyrion looks all victimized, he was trying to have me killed. Moving right along, tell Cersei we have to kill the dead.

Davos walks into a blacksmiths forge, And Gendry is back in the game. THough the writers missed the opportunity to use a stupid line like how about a bowl of brown or other such nonsense, I was so excited for this moment. Then Gendry is raring to go, he wants to stop making swords for the men who killed his father and fight for someone else. Davos says he will take him to Winterfell and my heart did a little skip. I want so badly to see the Gendry Arya reunion. I just keep seeing Gendry tell Arya “You would be MY lady” **Sigh** How this became my favorite GOT ship, idk. Moving on…. Gendry and Davos head down to the boat, some soldiers come to question them and Davos pays them off, but when they go to leave, Tyrion comes down and they remember the Queen’s bounty on the dwarf with a scar. Gendry takes them out with his awesome war hammer and the trio depart King’s Landing.

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In Winterfell, Sansa is holding court. The Lords are griping that the King left them and they should have had a Queen in the North. Arya watches in the corner as Sansa lamely says he is our king and we will wait faithfully, though noone really believed her. Arya confronts her sister for allowing them to talk trash about John and scheming. She points out how Sansa is now sleeping in their parents fancy room and ow she always liked nice things to make her feel better than everyone else.

Davos takes Gendry to meet Jon Snow. He tells him to hide who he really is and names him Clovis. When he introduces him to the King in the North, Gendry comes out and says I’m Gendry Bastard son of Robert Baratheon. They have a little I knew your dad back and forth then Gendry again defies Davos and says I don’t want to just be a blacksmith, I want to go with you and be a fighter. Now they are getting on a boat to leave Dragonstone. Jorah gets a big hug from Khaleesi and the creepy vibe is back. But then she tells John she was getting used to having him around and there’s one of those moments that makes Jorah a jealous boy.

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Back at the citadel, Sam is still pissed noone will listen to him because he is smart and knows thigns. He is copying scrolls as Gilly reads from a book and spouts random facts. Then asks whats an annulment because Prince Ragger had one and got secretly married, but Sam can’t pay attention to this bombshell news because he is being angry Sam and had enough of being ignored when he has bombshell information…… So Sam Steals a bunch of books, loads a wagon with Gilly and little Sam and leaves the citadel.

In Winterfell, Arya follows Littlefinger around. He has a raven scroll brought to him and hides it in his room. Arya breaks in and finds it, its the note Sansa was forced to write to Rob after Joffrey chopped of daddys head. As Arya leaves, thinking she knows something, Baylish spies on her with his smirky face on.

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Jon and his entourage arrive at the wall. They have come to Eastwatch by the Sea to talk with Tormund. they tell him the plan to find a dead guy to take home with them. He asks if they brought an army, or the big woman. Then he informs them they are not the only ones who want to go north of the wall. The group heads down to a cell where the Hound, Berric Dondarrion and Thoros of Myr are locked up. They all decide to buddy up and go hunt white walkers.

This season is flying by, And though it is shorter than previous seasons, it feels like so much more is happening. Every episode I have to watch multiple times because I want to make sure I am not missing anything. The epic scenes are even more epic. This season is my favorite so far and I cannot wait to see whats next, each weeks wait is torture. Watching the promo for next week has a pit in my stomach. If Gendry doesn’t make it to Winterfell to see Arya, I am gonna be pissed. If Tormund is killed and doesn’t get back to his big woman, I am going to cry. If Jorah makes it back to Dragonstone to make pathetic faces at Dany, I’m going to be annoyed.  Sometimes I wonder why I watch this show weekly, it is so stressful, maybe it would be easier to wait till the season ends and watch it in one day.

How did you feel about this weeks episode? Tell us in the comments.

Game of Thrones airs Sunday nights on HBO or you can stream it on Amazon with an HBO subscription, get 7 free days now and catch up.

 

 

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Orphan Black S. 5 EP. 10: To Right the Wrongs of Many

By Courtney

 

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Hi Clone Clubbers! This is it, the last episode and I didn’t want to watch it because I didn’t want this amazing journey to end. But I had to find out what happened, so here we go, down the rabbit hole.

This episode starts with a bang, right where we left off last week. Helena’s water has broken and she and Sarah are trapped trying to figure out what to do or how to escape. Sarah gets Helena to a side room and gives her a screwdriver to protect herself while she goes out to find water for her. Sarah is sneaking around and Art finds her so she sends him back to Helena. Dr. Coady is still not dead and comes looking for them, she finds some blood on the ground that leads her to Helena and Art. It seems the Dr. Coady has kind of learned her lesson about getting close to Helena and tells Art that he is delivering the babies. He starts to help Helena and they are both able to trick Dr. Coady into coming closer by saying that Helena is hemorrhaging. When Dr. Coady comes closer, Art is able to get her gun and he and Helena are finally able to kill her.

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While Helena and Art are occupied with Dr. Coady, Sarah has the final showdown with PT Westmoreland. They yell at eachother and she listens for him and correctly guesses where he is and shoots. He jumps her through the curtain and tries to smother her with plastic. She gets him off her and kills him in the middle of a speech. At this point, all the villains are dead and there’s still forty minutes left. Sarah goes back to Art and Helena and finds Dr. Coady dead and helps Helena give birth. During Sarah helping Helena, we get to see flashbacks of Sarah deciding what to do with Kira when she found out she was pregnant and the birth of Kira with Mrs. S helping her through it.  It was beautifully cut together.

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The show jumps to a couple months in the future, we see Helena living with the twins in Donnie and Alison’s garage, Sarah is getting math help from Cosima over Skype, the seestras are all moving on with their lives, this freedom is what they had been fighting for. We learn that Sarah was preparing to take her GED. Sarah shows up at the high school and can’t go take the test, she walks away from it. Sarah shows up to Alison’s for the baby shower and everyone asks her how it went and she lies and avoids telling them that she didn’t take it.  Helena can sense that something is off with Sarah, that she isn’t healing through this trauma the way the rest of the seestras are.

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The seestras sit by the fire in Alison’s backyard and Sarah breaks down with the truth, that she didn’t take her test and she doesn’t know how to be happy or how to be a good mom. All of the seestras tell her their own stories of losing their patience with their children and feeling like they were failing as parents. You can tell that by hearing those stories, Sarah realizes that she isn’t alone and that it’s okay to not be okay. Felix contacts Rachel on the sly and gets a full list of all the Leda clones and gives it to them. There are 274 Leda clones, Cosima and Delphine set about traveling and inoculating the rest of clones. Helena decides to name her twin boys Arthur and Donnie. Sarah decides not to sell the house and to focus on being a family mistakes and all.

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This was the happy ending that I wanted. I was really excited that the drama ended and got wrapped up early because the show was able to end on what it was really good at and what I love about it so much. Orphan Black is about family and finding yourself and figuring out where you fit. The fighting for their right to survive and not be science experiments anymore is exciting and necessary to the show, but it’s at its strongest when its the seestras hanging out by the fire confiding, struggling with life and being there for each other. As far as finales go, I’m very content with this one because I can see them all in my head getting together for barbeques and living their quiet lives. On a final note, I will say again the Tatiana Maslany is amazing and super nice and if you ever do get the chance to meet her, you should.

 

Thanks for coming with me on the journey Clone Clubbers, it’s been a great trip.

Orphan Black Airs Saturday nights on BBCA or you can stream it on Amazon Here.

(This page uses affiliate links to help support the cost of maintaining the blog. Purchasing a product through a provided link may provide us with a small fee to help us keep doing what we do. Thanks for your support)

Star Wars Marathon Musings Part 2

By Hannah

 

Part two of our marathon.  Episodes 4-7 is about eight and a half hours.  We watched all four movies this time.  

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Episode 4: A New Hope

AKA: The mystery of R2D2 and stairs

AKA: Luke isn’t a dick, but he knows how they think

AKA: Leia is a bad ass

AKA: What’s with the chasms in a space station?

AKA: Why are they getting medals?

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Hannah: The first Star Wars is pretty amazing.  The acting is on point, visuals are great, and the chemistry is electric.  Too much CGI, but that’s easily ignored most of the time.  I love R2D2 by himself and like R2D2 and C3P0 together.  C3P0 on his own is way too annoying, but when they are together R2D2’s sassy beeping mellows out C3P0’s incessant whining.

 

Courtney: I like this movie because of how much Leia does not put up with Han and Luke, even when they’re trying to rescue her. It’s clear that this is a war she has been fighting for a long time. Luke acts like a teenager, but he’s supposed to, he walks into potentially dangerous situations with no plan and expects it to work out okay.

 

Hannah: Well they are all teenagers.  If this was a high school drama, not an epic space adventure, Luke would be the naive freshman, Han would be the captain of the football team, and Leia would be the student body president who is focused on getting into a good school while taking care of her younger siblings.  Somehow their energy meshes well, and they get the job done…

 

Courtney: I disagree with your assessment that Han would be the captain of the football team, I think he’s more of the older stoner who refuses to graduate. But the rest of your analogy I can get behind. Especially, because the attempted love triangle fails hard. Luke and Leia are the same age but the way they have been raised changes their mental age dramatically.

 

Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back

AKA: Why do we need Han?

AKA: The only love triangle is in Han’s mind

AKA: Don’t trust the B in Cloud City!

AKA: Bait that Skywalker trap

AKA: Why doesn’t the force tell Darth about Leia?

AKA: NOOOOOOOOOOO

AKA: We probably could have skipped this

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Hannah: This movie does not end.  The beginning is solid, but after everyone escapes, there are seven scenes too many of training in the swamp and flirting in a broken down space ship.  We get it, Han thinks Leia is cute.  We get it, handstands are hard.  Great.  Can we move on?  

 

Courtney: I forgot how long this movie is.  I like the beginning in the snow and then the middle feels like it drags. As slow as it is though, it’s still better than the first three movies. Han acts remarkably petulant in the beginning of the film, I feel like that could have been done better.

 

Hannah:  I feel like this is the movie that Harrison Ford hated the most out of the four movies he did.  It’s not really a secret that he hated the Han Solo character, so maybe the petulance and the way the movie dragged on and on was because his hatred was bleeding through?

 

Courtney: I do like that this movie showed us actual different worlds within the galaxy. Sometimes in movies with other planets, they all look like earth, like mountains and stuff. I appreciate that we got to see some extremes, I think it helped make it look a lot more believable.

 

Episode 6: Return of the Jedi

AKA: Random unneeded musical number

AKA: Luke’s planning is better. He grows

AKA: What has everyone been doing for four years?

AKA: So that’s what a bothan is

AKA: Ewoks will eat anything

AKA: Are Ewoks supposed to be cute or terrifying

AKA: Why is the stormtrooper’s armor even there?  

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Hannah: Everyone has really matured well in the four years between the end of The Empire Strikes Back and the beginning of Return of the Jedi.  Except Han, but he was frozen in time.  Why would they give him the title of general?  He is mostly there to joke around and make googly eyes at Leia.

 

Courtney: Go Luke! He’s actually grown by this movie and I appreciate that. He creates plans when encountering dangerous situations and relies on other people to help him. Leia is still amazing, she’s a princess but she knows she can handle herself so she goes where the action is.

 

Hannah:  I also like that the boys trust her when she does this.  In the first and second movie, no one wants to listen to her battle plans when shit goes down.  Han pretty much argues with her the entire time and Luke keeps trying to protect her.  In the third movie, Luke trusts her to get the job done and Han doesn’t argue as much.  Although he still sulks about Leia’s relationship with Luke.

Courtney: Han’s insecurity in this movie was weird. He keeps second guessing Leia’s feelings, but he doesn’t ever ask her about it. Leia is clearly team Han in this movie and Han somehow doesn’t get it.

 

Episode 7: The Force Awakens

AKA: Should have stuck with clones

AKA: Liar liar pants on fire

AKA: How does BB8 get up stairs?

AKA: Tantrum much?

AKA: That’s not how the force works

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Hannah:  This is my first time seeing The Force Awakens.  It’s amazeballs.  Goofy at all the right times, serious when needed, and full of tension.  I like that, so far, you can’t tell if there is any romantic tension.  In the orig-trig they tried to make a love triangle with Leia in the middle.  If they do that with these next three, it would probably be with Finn in the middle…  I would not object to that.

 

Courtney: I love this movie. I love BB8 and Rey and Finn. I appreciate that the creators were able to bring in new cast while still doing the previous cast justice. They brought in all the elements that I loved from the original trilogy and added new changes to make it even better.

 

Hannah:  BB8 was super cute.  I loved that more than one person could understand it.  Another thing that I loved about this movie is that they went back to more practical effects.  BB8 is real.  You can make it yourself!  The insta bread was also pretty cool, as well as just about everything else.  This movie combined the visuals of the three-quills (which were better than the orig-trig), with the great chemistry and story telling of the orig-trig.  Two more movies and hopefully The Force will be balanced.

 

Courtney: I like your reminder about their being two more movies coming, this movie was odd in that it felt like both a beginning and a continuation. I feel like it’s what producers strive for when they try to do a reboot. I honestly don’t really know where the next movie is going to go, but I’m excited and I want to go there. I like it when authors do that in book series, give you a contained, well ended story that leaves you content but wanting more.

 

So, the bad news is that if you do a Star Wars marathon in chronological, it is a very difficult start.  The good news though is that the marathon will end fantastically.  Totally worth the time.

 

(This page uses affiliate links to help support the cost of maintaining the blog. Purchasing a product through a provided link may provide us with a small fee to help us keep doing what we do. Thanks for your support)

Fandomly Fashionable: Heroines

In August we are focusing on heroines. Women sometimes have a harder time finding role models in pop culture. Sure there are some great ones, but they are not as prevalent as male superheroes. Luckily we have people like Joss Whedon who know that girls need strong women to look up to and the with amazing films like Wonder Woman coming out on top, we are making great progress. So this month, we have been focusing on the strong women we admire. Since Courtney makes her clothes based on the heroes she admires much of the time, we discussed her motivations.

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What defines a hero to you?

A true hero comes in dark when no one is looking and does what needs to be done.

 

Who is your favorite heroine and why?

My favorite heroine is Batgirl, Barbara Gordon. She is my favorite because she has no superpowers and must rely on her strength and wit to help her do the right thing. She is also flawed and still strives to do the right thing in spite of those flaws.

 

What inspires you about heroines?

Heroines show me that I do have the power to change the world, they are the people that I root for, that I try to be when I can in my everyday life.

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How do you try and implement that in your designs?

I try and pull color schemes or general design shapes into the clothes I design. I like my clothes to be representative of the characters their designed after, but have it not be super obvious. My Batgirl dress is one of my favorite examples because the back was designed to be like a cape without being an obvious cape. That dress lends me the strength of Batgirl when I feel like I need it the most.

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What future heroines do you have plans to create clothing around?

I think about a lot of different heroines when I design and I keep coming back to the ladies of Star Wars; Padme’s clothes are gorgeous and Princess Leia is such an iconic figure. I would really like to have a couple different designs from the both of them at some point. Gwen Poole is another character I keep coming back to because I’d really like to reclaim the color pink and show that you can be a total bad ass and wear pink.

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If you want to be a heroine, or just dress like one, head over to the Etsy shop and check out the awesome deal on the fandom inspired tutus. Already marked down 25% for the month of August.

You can find Fandomly Fashionable on Facebook and Etsy.

 

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Bingeable: Rizzoli & Isles

By Hannah

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Click image to view on Amazon

Adding to our theme of Heroines this month, Rizzoli and Isles can be seen streaming on Hulu and Amazon.  There will be spoilers in this review.

 

Meet homicide detective Jane Rizzoli and her best friend/co-worker Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Maura Isles.  Together they, and the rest of their team solve murders in the city of Boston.  

 

Jane Rizzoli is the oldest of three, she has a great knack for interrogation, and loves baseball.  Maura is the adopted daughter of Harvard professors, she cannot lie, and has a pet tortoise.  Sergeant Korsak is Jane’s former partner. He has a soft spot for animals, is a gifted musician, and has been married three times.  Detective Barry Frost is Jane’s current partner.  He get nauseous at the sight of gore, is the team’s tech guru, and will break your heart.  Frankie Rizzoli Jr. is Jane’s baby brother and a beat cop trying to make detective.  Susie Chang is Dr. Isles assistant.  She is serious, honest, and makes dioramas to help her think.  Angela Rizzoli is Jane and Frankie’s mother.  She is a great cook, human lie detector, and recently divorced from Frankie Rizzoli Sr.  Tommy Rizzoli is the baby Rizzoli.  He’s an ex-con, chess genius, and single dad.  Nina Holiday is a former Chicago cop, tech guru, and owns a wedding hat(this is explained in the show, but it’s also exactly what it sounds like).  She is the eventual replacement of Det. Frost.  Kent Drake is Scottish, a former army doctor, and a Kiss fan.  He is the eventual replacement of Susie.

 

Clearly there are more characters I could list, but these are the main group.  They work together, play together, and sometimes (not often) consider dating. Jane and Maura are both single, so there are boyfriends and hook-ups that make appearances.  You get to meet all of Maura’s parents, both of Frost’s parents, 2 out of 3 of Korsak’s exes, and Jane’s informant, Rondo.  Plus all the murder victims, suspects, witnesses, etc.

 

This show started out as a cut and paste police procedural.  They threw in a serial killer who was obsessed with Jane, and a bio dad who turned out to be a mob boss with a signature kill.  It wasn’t until midway through the first season that it became something special.  Money for Nothing is the name of the episode.  It cemented in my mind that these two women were actually friends.  Often a show will say that characters are friends, and then they never show the character interact in any way other than colleagues/barely interact.

 

Money for Nothing showed that even though these two women come from different backgrounds, they will work on their issues together, support each other, and laugh.  I think the thing I like the most about this show is the laughter.  It feels genuine and welcoming.  When I watch, I feel included in the jokes, I get a ball of emotions clogged in my throat during the sad scenes, and a jaw ache during the tense situations.  This show engages you on multiple levels.

 

There are two major deaths in this show.  The first one is Det. Frost, who died in a car crash.  We never see his body.  That’s because the actor Lee Thompson Young, died in 2014.  It left a major hole in the team, and you can tell that the actors who worked with him were grieving through the remainder of the show.  The second death was that of Susie Chang.  She is murdered off screen, but you get to see a body.  She’s never really mentioned after her funeral, which makes me as a viewer a little sad.  I’m not sure what happened, but I missed her when she was gone.  I hope I’m not the only one.

 

The show isn’t perfect though.  It shows a technologically advanced police force, that I don’t think exists anywhere.  There’s apparently a program through all of Boston that records and reports any gunshot throughout the city, or the fact that every corner has video surveillance…  Also, anytime there’s a shooting, the officers involved disarmed the criminal by grabbing the gun and tossing it away.  I thought the police were supposed to kick the guns away, to avoid getting their fingerprints on the weapon.  I could be wrong.  Everything I know about police procedure I learned from TV…

 

4.5 out of 5 stars

Game of Thrones S. 7 Ep. 4 : The Spoils Of War

By Domoni

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We start with Jaime and Bron returning from Highgarden with the gold and goods. Jaime gives Bron a large bag of gold, but Bron wants the castle he was promised. He would love to take Highgarden but Jaime denies him, telling him they are at war and someone will just come and try and take it from him and that when the war is over he can take his pick of castles.

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Back at King’s Landing, Cersei is with the man from the Iron bank. She assures him the money will be there and he is all grovelling and useful, as long as the money actually comes through.  He assures her the Iron Bank will support her as long as the gold comes in.

 

In Winterfell, Littlefinger is doing what Littlefinger does. He is trying to sway someone. This time his focus is on the man formerly known as Bran Stark. He offers Bran the dagger that was used in his attempted murder. Bran delivers his current level of power on a silver platter to Baylish by telling him ” Chaos is a ladder.” Which is a phrase Lord Baylish uttered to Varys many moons ago while secretly scheming.

 

Meera comes to say goodbye to Bran. He has a fancy new wheelchair to get him around now and doesn’t need his lady powered sled. She wants to be with her remaining family when the frozen death comes south of the wall. Bran again shows  his new unemotional side as Meera lists all those who died to get him to his uncaring power.

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And now finally, Arya is home. She comes to the gates of Winterfell and is challenged by the guards. She finally convinces them to let her through the gate even though she cannot convince them she is a Stark.  While the guards argue over who will inform Sansa of the new arrival, she slips off to the family crypt. Sansa hears out the guards and realizes it is really her younger sibling and knows where to find her. We get a sisterly reunion in the cold hall of the dead with an unflattering statue of Ned looking over. Sansa tells Arya that she isn’t the only sibling to make it home.

 

Under the Weirdwood tree, Arya is reunited with Bran. She learns he has visions and seems to accept it without question. For a girl who can change her face, not much should be weird at this point I suppose. Bran shows off his fancy new dagger, but gives it to Arya who of course  is thrilled to now have her own Valyrian steel blade.

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Back on DragonStone, Daenerys and Missandei are walking along and discussing the unsullied. Missandei obviously wants her man back which Dany notices and has to pump her for some girl talk about what went down…. Before details can happen in a good girl talk chat, Jon Snow arrives to take the Mother of Dragons on a tour of the mine.

 

Jon shows Khaleesi the dragonglass glimmering in the cave, and then he shows her ancient drawings made by the children of the forest. The images depict them working with humans to battle the white walkers. Daenerys seems to finally be willing to aid in the battle against the army of the dead, if Jon will bend the knee. He again refuses to submit, explaining his people would never accept a ruler from the south again. She insists they will follow his lead, in a conversation that mirrors the plea Jon made to Mance.

 

When they exit the cave, Tyrion is there with bad news. Daenerys is angry and wants to fly off and burn the Red Keep and everyone in it. Tyrion insists this is not the way to go. She asks Jon his advice and he tells her if she wants to be a better ruler, melting cities and castles with a dragon will not convince the people.

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Back in Winterfell, Podrick is taking another beating/training session with Brienne. Arya observes before saying she wishes to train with the warrior who defeated the hound. Brienne and Arya spar while Sansa and Littlefinger look on from above. As Arya enjoys showing off her skill, Sansa seems to be less than thrilled at her younger siblings abilities. When an impressed Brienne asks who taught Arya to fight, she replies “noone.”

 

Back at Dragonstone Theon arrives on the beach with some of the Greyjoy men. Jon meets him there and informs him only the fact he saved Sansa is keeping him alive. He tells the envoy he has come to ask the Queen to help him save Yara, but he finds out the Queen is not on the island.

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Back in The Reach, Jaime, Jerkface Tarly and Bron are watching the last of the troops and supplies. Suddenly, Bron hears the thunder. As the men realize what is coming, they yell for their soldiers to line up shields and spears. They form a perimeter around the loot train and Jaime and Jerkface Tarly keep yelling at the men to hold the line and not let the Dothraki horde through, when Drogon and Daenerys appear to decimate the line with fire.

 

This battle is rather epic. It may not have had the build up that the other anticipated battles like the Battle of the Bastards, but it still blew me away. When Dany says dracarys I get a little giddy. The Dothraki could have taken the Lannisters on their own, but with Drogon flying overhead, there was no question. Bron puts up a hell of a fight and makes his way to the secret weapon. He gets off a shot that goes wide and misses but alerts the queen to the weapon. As she comes in to destroy it Bron gets another massive arrow off which strikes Drogon. He appears to fall from the sky but catches himself to land on his feet. He takes out the enormous bow and while Daenerys tends to him, Jaime sees her seemingly unprotected attempting to pull the giant arrow from her dragons shoulder.

 

As Tyrion watches from a hill vantage point, he pleads for his brother to flee. Jaime instead grabs a spear and charges at the queen. When he gets too close, Drogon moves his massive head and fire races towards Jaime. Luckily, Bron is near and he pushes Jaime from his horse and they both sink into the nearby strangely very deep water, safe from the fire but that doesn’t mean safe…..

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While this episode didn’t seem quite as packed as last weeks, many great things happened. I am still so full of anticipation waiting for what is to come. The tension between the King in the North and the Rightful Queen of the Andals and the First Men is heating up. So people seem to be clamoring for some more royal incest.  Will these two get busy before they find out that Jon is Dany’s nephew, will that matter to people from a family that wed siblings? Arya now has a pretty epic weapon that will kill white walkers, so the potential for her destiny is still just growing. Sansa is really still just an annoying envious girl in a lot of ways, I would like to see more actual growth from her. Can we just cook Cersei and move on to the real battle? Will Grey Worm make it home to Missandei? Hopefully, we will get some answers next week.

 

Game of Thrones airs Sunday nights on HBO or you can stream it on Amazon with an HBO subscription, get 7 free days now and catch up.

 

 

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Orphan Black S. 5 Ep. 9 : One Fettered Slave

 

By Courtney

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The closer we get to the series finale, the more reluctant I find myself when it comes to watching these episodes. I have loved this show from the beginning and am not eager to see it end. This episode gave us a backstory that I didn’t know I wanted to see until it was in front of me. Helena has always been a complicated character and we finally get to see why. I remember meeting the character of Helena in season one and wishing they would kill her off, I hated her. But then she was gone for a couple episodes and I found myself missing her. Over the course of the show, she has become one of my favorite characters.

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We see Helena as a little girl in the convent being cruelly punished for accidentally watching a nun pleasure herself. The nun bleaches her hair and locks her in a closet. Helena is then adopted by a man who teaches her that her life purpose is to rid the world of the “dirty copies”. Helena makes her first kill in a church and realizes that the girl looks like her and that she herself is a copy. The man who adopts her, tells her that she is the original and now we know why Helena was hell bent on killing all the clones when we first meet her.

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This episode also deals with the consequences of Mrs. S’s death and it’s a loss that is felt by everyone. Felix is driven to act because he feels like he can’t sit still and Sarah sits back and is there for Kira and herself. I was really proud of Sarah for making the decision to stay with Kira, I feel like the Sarah from season 1 would have made a different decision. Sarah is actively trying to be a better mom and be there for Kira when she wasn’t there in the past. Felix and Art go bug Rachel about where Helena is after a nun comes to them and tells Sarah that Helena has been taken.

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Helena is currently in the hands of Dr. Coady and PT. PT wants cord blood from Helena’s babies and orders Dr. Coady around to try and get the results he wants. Dr. Coady listens to him for the most part, even killing Mark, the last castor clone at his request. Killing Mark doesn’t sit well with Dr. Coady and is why she insists on preserving the life of Helena’s babies, she needs something new to experiment on. Helena waits until she’s alone and tries to cut her shackles off and when it fails, she tries to kill herself and her babies to prevent them from being a science experiment the way she was. Considering that Helena has been ferociously protective of her babies, her willingness to end all of their lives is a sign of her desperation, her final act of protecting them and it is heartbreaking to watch.

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Art, Felix, Rachel and Sarah realize that the only way to find Helena is to offer up Rachel to PT and track where they take her. When they are taking Rachel in to see PT, she was slightly off in her mannerisms. She goads PT and he figures out that it’s not Rachel, it’s Sarah when he lifts up her eye patch. Sarah is only saved by Dr. Coady bursting in telling her that they need her blood to give to Helena. Dr. Coady hooks Sarah up to Helena who is unconscious and Dr. Coady informs Sarah that she will be cutting the babies out unless Helena wakes up. In true Helena form, she comes to and tricks Dr. Coady into coming close to her and bashes her head into the bed rails. Helena hands Sarah a knife and prepares to flee. At this point we do not know if Dr. Coady is dead or alive. As Helena stands up, her water breaks and the episode ends.

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This episode was really good. We got see how much the clones have grown as people and it sets us up for the final episode. Ugh, I’m not happy about the final episode. Tatiana Maslany is amazing and this episode definitely showcased that. Sometimes when she’s Helena, I forget that it’s one person doing all of it. Her ability to act as a clone, acting like another clone in a way that is completely believable will always blow my mind. I do not know how they are going to wrap up everything in an hour. Neolution is falling, but PT is still currently alive, as is Art’s terrifying partner. I don’t think we’ll ever learn how connected Kira is to all of the seestras, or how it works. The show runners have been hinting at a wedding between Cosima and Delphine all season, I hope it happens. There’s a lot of action that needs to happen in the next episode and I hope it ends with all the members of clone club alive and going on to live quiet happy lives where they get together for sister barbeques every once in awhile. I want them all to have happy endings, I’m a sucker for a happy ending.

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Until next week, the final final week Clone Clubbers.

 

Orphan Black Airs Saturday nights on BBCA or you can stream it on Amazon Here.

 

 

(This page uses affiliate links to help support the cost of maintaining the blog. Purchasing a product through a provided link may provide us with a small fee to help us keep doing what we do. Thanks for your support)

Atomic Blonde Spoiler Free Review

By Domoni

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Since we decided to focus on heroines in August, I decided to go check out Atomic Blonde. I hadn’t seen a single trailer for this movie, which doesn’t surprise me because women led films often get the short straw in promotion. I had seen a couple of articles talking about Charlize Theron being James Bond Badass material. So, I went into the movie with no preconceived ideas. There are no big spoilers in this review.

Atomic Blonde (2017)

It is 1989 and the eve of German reunification. Lorraine Broughton is an MI6 agent, she is being called in to debrief her recent mission to Berlin. Told in flashbacks, this movie switches between the present and the past as Lorraine disdainfully recants the job to her superiors.  She was sent to Berlin to find a list of names which details every active field agent in Germany, including a double agent known as Satchel. A previous agent, James Gasciogne was shot and killed for the list by KGB agent Yurl Bahktin.

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From the moment Lorraine touches down, her cover is blown. After surviving her first attack by the KGB she meets up with the  other British agent in Berlin, Percival. He discusses what he knows with her as he drops her at her hotel.

Lorraine heads to Gasciogne’s apartment. It has obviously already been searched many times, but she does find a photo of Gasciogne with Percival, who never mentioned knowing him. We begin to get the first hints that Percival cannot be trusted.

The movie has an amazing soundtrack and is visually pleasing. Set against the fall of the Berlin wall, we see the chaos of 1989 Germany as a metaphor for the chaos of the life of a spy. The action scenes are thrilling and keep you on the edge of your seat, but the story and the pacing in between the action, do not keep the viewer motivated to stay awake. I was literally dozing off. The problems with this film outweigh the good.

Lorraine is an unsympathetic heroine. Her character has zero depth and nothing to motivate you to root for her. The fact that we know she didn’t die, takes all the stakes out of her danger. Though we get a small glimpse of a possible connection Lorraine had with Gasciogne before his death, she is so cold, it really doesn’t affect the viewer in any emotional way. I actually felt more for Percival and found myself rooting for him to be able to continue to be the feral cretin he is.

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While tracking the list, Lorraine meets french agent Delphine Lasalle and they begin a sexual relationship. Again, Lorraine seems emotionless and for me this seemed to only be a way to have sex in the film. Which was unnecessary and started to turn this potential badass female role model into a cheap thrill for men.

When I read an article comparing this film to Wonder Woman, it bothered me. The magic of Wonder Woman, was a woman directed it to be an amazing movie. You could watch this film and be immersed in it. I never had a moment where I felt like I was watching something made to get a guy off. Gal Gadot was just a badass who didn’t need to prove it. Sadly, Charlize Theron did not hit those notes. Yes the fight scenes were epic and kudos for her doing them. But often the camera would be at an angle to watch her skirt ride up above her garter or other such props that you don’t see women directors needing to include. And so this movie falls victim to the male gaze. If that does not bother you, then perhaps you too will just feel rather bored in between the action scenes.

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When looking back over this film, I felt mostly annoyed that my brain was picking all of this apart and when I write a list of what stood out to me the most, Bill Skarsgard seemed to steal every scene he was in and that was not what I wanted from this movie. I mean don’t get me wrong, he is impressive, but I wanted to leave this movie on the female power high I had walking out of Wonder Woman and I didn’t even get the female power lift I left Ghost Busters with.

Though the ending was surprising and enjoyable, I felt like I could have waited to rent this movie and watch at home.

2.5 out of 5 stars.