Sense 8

Dynamite Review Best of 2017

Movies

1.      Thor: Ragnarok – I don’t get to watch new movies much as they come out, but I was so lucky to get to see this in theaters. It was AWESOME! I’ve already pre-ordered the steelbook from Best Buy, I got the theatrical poster off of Disney Movie Rewards and it’s framed and in my kids bathroom, and I can’t wait to watch it again and again.

2.     John Wick 2 – Great action movie and addition to the series. Awesome world, I’m interested in the Stars series that’s potentially coming out.

3.     Kingsman: The Golden Circle – In your face, over the top action.

4.     Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – While not as good as the previous one I loved so many things about this movie. The colors, the characters, the relationships. I’m so glad that this is part of the Marvel Universe.

5.     Spider-Man: Homecoming – I really enjoyed this movie but what’s potentially more important, my daughter loves this movie.

6.     Moana – This is more an honorable mention since it came out in 2016 not 2017. Love the music and the story, reminds me of the Disney I grew up with.

Books

1.      White Hot by Ilona Andrews – The long awaited sequel to Burn for Me, so good.

2.     Wildfire by Ilona Andrews – Love this series so much, want more. Wasn’t too happy with the ending, but still love.

3.     Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan – Beautiful art, interesting story, need some answers though. The only comic I pre-order.

4.     The Rosetta Man by Claire McCague – Picked this up randomly and I ended up loving it. So happy when that happens.

5.     Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs – Not my favorite Patricia Briggs book, too many Doctor Who references, lots of other little things, but still a Patricia Briggs book so it’s going on the list!

6.     Heartstrikers Series by Rachel Aaron – This series didn’t come out last year, though they did have a book release that I haven’t read yet, but I had to put it on the list because I enjoyed it so much.

7.     The Guardians Trilogy by Nora Roberts – This is the kind of Nora Roberts series that I love. It didn’t come out in 2017, but after being wary of starting it because of her more recent books I got to it late.

TV Shows

1.      The Crown – I resisted watching this because I heard so much praise, but I’m glad I finally did. I destroyed the second season that recently aired and I honestly think it might be better than the first. Amazing show.

2.     Sense 8 – I love this idea so much and the second season wasn’t as slow as the first. The ending killed me and then when they canceled it, ugh, I never do TV show petitions but I signed them all. I canceled Netflix for the first time in years. I was furious. I’m hoping that the movie will be able to wrap things up but I seriously don’t see how that’s possible. I’ll probably never keep Netflix running continuously because of how they did this show.

3.     The Good Place – I had no desire to watch this last year, it just didn’t seem that funny to me. I ended up having the end of season one spoiled for me and that changed everything. I was able to binge the first season on Netflix and I’ve watched every episode of the second as it’s aired. So freaking funny.

4.     The Orville – Wow, I had no expectations for this show. I had hopes, but because of Seth MacFarlane I didn’t have many. I was certainly surprised and this has ended up being one of my favorite shows of the year. It’s like getting new episodes of Star Trek, only instead of the Enterprise team we’ve got the D tier crew. The jokes don’t always land and they’re reusing a lot of Star Trek plots, but I don’t care. I’m so glad that this has been picked up for a second season and I’m hoping that they continue to find their footing.

5.     Future Man – Loved this, it was so crude and hilarious and just came out of nowhere. Time travel, video games, the 80s, James Cameron’s AI, a terrible future, so many things that add up to funny. So glad we’re getting a second season.

6.     Legion – This is not my usual type of show. It’s wild and out there and very trippy. The only reason I watched it was because I needed something to keep me up during late night feedings and I ended up staying up just to finish episodes. Half the time I’m not sure what’s going on, but I honestly didn’t care. They gave just enough answers not to drive me crazy, but still left me needing to know more.

7.     Black-ish – I just discovered Black-ish this year and thank goodness Hulu has all of the episodes. Most episodes are nice, funny episodes, but the episodes that aren’t, the episodes where they “teach” you something are so good. This year there was one about postpartum depression that really resonated with me.

8.     Life in Pieces – I laugh in every single episode of this show. Love it.

9.     The Librarians – The third season was probably the weakest so far and I’m not overly thrilled with all that’s going on in the fourth season but I seriously can’t think of anything that would have me stop watching this.

 

Games

1.      Splatoon 2 (Switch) This was hands down my favorite game of the year. In an alternate universe I went pro, built a brand, and lived the life of the rich and famous.

2.     Stardew Valley (Switch) After putting in 160 hours on the PC version you’d think I’d be done with this game, but nope. As soon as it came out on the Switch I bought it and started all over again. Aided by the amazing guide my husband bought me for Christmas 2016 I’ve been chipping away at all the in game achievements.

3.     Lego City Undercover (Switch) I beat this once, then got halfway through beating it again before Splatoon 2 came out. I still plan on going back and working on unlocking everything, though, it’s not a priority because I certainly got my money out of this.

4.     Delicious Emily Home Sweet Home (PC) Really liked the story in this one, young married couple with a little kid get their dream house and fix it up. If I was crazy and didn’t mind construction around toddlers I could totally do this too.

5.     Horizon Zero Dawn (PS4) I’m stretching things a bit including this to my list. I got it for Christmas after trying it out at Red Box and finding it interesting enough to try more. I didn’t start playing it until December 31st and at this point I’m only a couple hours in, however, I love the idea a lot. I love that she’s a real looking woman and she’s kicking ass. So far they haven’t put her in super revealing clothes which is nice too. The world is interesting, however, I wish I didn’t have to use a bow and arrow. If I ever beat it, or put a significant amount of time in I’ll write a review.

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Sense 8

Recently I watched and loved the second season of Sense 8, almost as soon as I’d finished Netflix announced that it had been canceled. I felt so betrayed. It’s been some time since I heard their decision and I can safely say that I’m still pissed off. I’ve actually gone so far as to cancel Netflix. While, I’m sure I’ll be back, for the first time in about ten years I won’t have Netflix. When I do inevitably re-subscribe I don’t see myself keeping it going indefinitely. I’ll probably just watch what I want then cancel it again.

I thought they were going to be different from networks and at least give me closure on their shows, but Sense 8 season 2 had a massive cliffhanger and now we’ll never know what happened. The Wachowskis told them from the beginning that they planned on five seasons, they knew that it was going to be a large cast and filmed all over the world. None of this was news and yet Netflix decided not to continue.

I understand that they weren’t getting the kind of viewer numbers they expected, but that’s the beauty of the Netflix model, the show is going nowhere. It will always be there for people to discover and love, only now they will find it and be let down. It will be the next Firefly, a vocal fanbase that feels forever slighted. If we could only get a movie to wrap it up that might make things better.

I don’t normally write stuff like this, I write reviews, but it bothered me so much I felt like I had to share something. For now, I’m going to wrap up watching the few things in my Netflix queue that aren’t available anywhere else, and then probably end up buying more seasons of things on Amazon. Because, honestly, fuck you Netflix.

***UPDATE***

Clearly my post has worked, lol, Netflix is going to let them create a two hour movie. I know it’s not going to have everything I want, but hopefully it’s enough. Yeah!

Sense 8 Season 2 (2015-?)

Sense 8 Season 2 (2015-?)

Network:

Netflix

Creators:

J. Michael Straczynski

Lily Wachowski

Lana Wachowski

Starring:

Doona Bae

Jamie Clayton

Tina Desai

Tuppence Middleton

Max Riemelt

Miguel Ángel Silvestre

Brian J. Smith

Toby Onwumere

Plot:

A group of people around the world are suddenly linked mentally, and must find a way to survive being hunted by those who see them as a threat to the world’s order.

Review:

Once again I watched the entire season before writing my review. If I could have watched this all in one day I would have, but I couldn’t because of kids and I watched with my husband so it took much longer than I would have preferred.

Anyway, if you liked the first season you’ll probably love the second. The pacing is much better, though there are still slower bits that I could have done without. Still more character development, but there was finally some story and world development as well. So much happened and each of the characters had their moment to shine, we were also introduced to some more Sense 8s which was fun to see.

Honestly, I love this series flaws and all. I still love Lito, Miguel Ángel Silvestre, episode eight with him had me laughing so hard. I don’t dislike the new actor playing Van Damm, Toby Onwumere, but I didn’t love him as much as the previous, really warmed up to Kala, Tina Desai, this season.

The final episode felt rushed, which is kind of crazy considering you never think that with the rest of the show. I’m hoping that if there’s a season 3 (there better be) that they go more in depth into what happened. If not I’ll be annoyed especially since the previous two episodes were the weakest of the series.

4.5/5

My 2015 Favorites

Movies:

2015 was not a good year for movies, for me at least. Of course, I’ve yet to see Star Wars so that could certainly change. I gave only two movies 5 stars, Tomorrowland and Mockingjay. I had several 4 stars that I remember very fondly though. Anyway, the following is a list of the movies I enjoyed the most, star ranking be damned.

    1. Tomorrowland– I was not expecting to love this movie as much as I did and I’m so thankful that I rented it. Literally the day after I watched it I went out, bought it, and watched it again. I have it downloaded on all of my devices and will just randomly watch parts of it. I love it and I could easily see this movie becoming one of my all-time favorites
    2. Jurassic World– This movie is another one that I bought, but I haven’t actually watched it yet. Thinking back to the theater I really loved it and I’m excited for more in the franchise like this. Also, Chris Pratt is awesome.
    3. Kingsman: The Secret Service– I think this movie was so great because I wasn’t expecting it. I went in with very little expectations and was pleasantly surprised.
    4. Parallels– I hesitate listing this because, while I liked it, it doesn’t feel complete. I really hope there’s more to come because the world created was very interesting.This was the year of books. I read over 100 books and so many of them were good. I did of course read a couple I absolutely loathed (I’m looking at you Fable: Edge of the World and Murder is Binding) but the majority of what I read I really enjoyed.

Books:

 

    1. Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond– I gave this as a Christmas present, that should really tell you how much I enjoyed it. I can easily see this being the first book in a series I absolutely adore.
    2. Justice Calling by Annie Bellet– This is the first book in the Twenty-Sided Sorceress series and one of my favorite discoveries of the year. Great series and I’m looking forward to reading the most recent installment.
    3. Anything by Jenn McKinlay- I read several McKinlay books this year and I loved almost all of them and the one I didn’t love I still liked. If you’re looking for a cozy mystery I highly recommend anything she’s done. She writes great characters and her stories are light and fairly believable.
    4. Clariel by Garth Nix- Even after all this time Nix stayed true to the world and showed us a great character.
    5. Magic Breaks & Magic Shifts by Ilona Andrews- It’s Ilona Andrews, of course these books were amazing.
    6. Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs- Just like Ilona Andrews, Briggs never fails to give me a book I love.
    7. Cinder by Marissa Meyer- Really liked the unique take on fairy tales this series has brought. I haven’t yet read the final installment, but I’m looking forward to it.

TV:

 

I don’t write as many TV blog posts as I should, probably because I watch too much damn TV, but here’s a list of my favorites for the year.

    1. Sense 8 on Netflix– This show suffered some pacing issues, but it didn’t affect how much I loved it. Season 2 can’t come out fast enough.
    2. Marvel’s Agent Carter on ABC– Loved this show. Really loved this show. I want to be Agent Carter when/if I grow up. She’s such a great character and I’m really looking forward to season 2 which starts in January.
    3. Jane the Virgin on CW– When I’m watching this show I’m in freakin love. When I’m not watching this show I can’t really understand why I liked it so much because it sounds so crazy. Every episode delivers and it has continued into the second season, there has been no dip in quality. Highly recommend, more people should be watching this.
    4. Daredevil on Netflix– Episode two has one of the best fight scenes of the year from movies or TV, it was that good.
    5. Jessica Jones on Netflix– I didn’t think it was possible, but this was darker than Daredevil. Not really a huge fan of dark, but they did this very well. I thought Jessica Jones was a realistic portrayal of an abuse victim that happens to have some superpowers. She was rarely likable, but I never hated her, you could always understand why she acted the way she did. Actors were spot on as well, it was freaky seeing Tennant be so evil.
    6. Dark Matter on SyFy– I found this show on Netflix and was pleasantly surprised. It takes a couple episodes to gather steam but when it does it becomes an interesting Sci-Fi tv show. Nice female lead and an interesting story.

 

This has been my 2015 year in review. What did you enjoy most this year?

Sense 8 (2015-?)

sense8_cast_netflix

Sense 8 (2015-?)

Network:

Netflix

Creators:

J. Michael Straczynski

Andy Wachowski

Lana Wachowski

Starring:

Aml Ameen

Donna Bae

Jamie Clayton

Tina Desai

Tuppence Middleton

Max Riemelt

Miguel Ángel Silvestre

Brian J. Smith

Plot:

A group of people around the world are suddenly linked mentally, and must find a way to survive being hunted by those who see them as a threat to the world’s order.

Review:

First, this review is not based on just the pilot. Normally I’ll watch a pilot episode, decide if I’m at least mildly interested in the show and then give it three to six episodes to catch me. I would not recommend that for Sense 8, you really need to watch all the episodes to make that decision.

I loved Sense 8 and I’m on pins and needles waiting to hear if Netflix has renewed it. I’ve talked myself down several times already with assurances that Netflix is willing to try new things and was aware that the show was pitched as multiple seasons. Still, I’m on edge.

I can completely understand if you watch this and end up not liking it. Sense 8 is not for everyone. The pacing is slow, it’s very much an origin story, and it’s almost all character building.

I flip flop between who my favorite character is, Lito, Miguel Ángel Silvestre, is awesome and I love his partner. Van Damm, Aml Ameen, is hilarious and so much fun to watch. Then there’s Wolfgang, Max Riemelt, who’s the troubled bad boy that doesn’t believe he deserves love. There are some characters I don’t like as much, but none that I out right hate.

The pacing did get annoying at times. It was pretty slow for a show that is twelve episodes long. There was a lot of information that they were feeding you, though. I wished there was a bit more action and I thought the action they did show wasn’t on par with other Wachowski movies. Of course this wasn’t a movie and they had to deal with a smaller budget and actors who don’t necessarily have fighting experience.

I could easily see this becoming one of those things that people either love or can’t make it through. It’s almost like Jane Eyre in that the first three hundred pages can be a little dry, but then it starts to really pick up. The first eight episodes are a lot of information and unanswered questions, but by episode nine things pick up. A little. When it ends there are still a lot of questions unanswered, but they’ve also answered a fair amount too.

I really enjoyed this show and would highly recommend it, but I’m not going to be mad if you don’t like it. Just give me some good reasons, though.

5/5

EDIT: So happy this was picked up for a second season!