masters

MASTERS OF SEX, Season Finale

Kennedy’s presidential campaign and inauguration was the backdrop to this week’s finale. It ushered in change as relationships evolved and this season ended. Six weeks have passed since the last episode. Over time, Masters and Virginia have observed what has and hasn’t worked to help Bill’s impotence. A succession of nights devoted to non-sexual touching, touching genitals but no sex, and finally sexual intercourse may have cured Masters’ sexual dysfunction. After Masters discusses the idea that he and Virginia may have cured impotence, Bill dreams he is thrown a ticker tape parade. He gets into a car with Virginia as they are hailed for their success, but the car suddenly stops when Libby appears in the middle of the road. When Masters wakes from his dream he finds Libby isn’t in her bed. Libby is… Continue
howtogetaway

HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER, Series Premiere

It’s no exaggeration to say that How to Get Away with Murder has been one of the most anticipated — not to mention heavily promoted — new series for fall 2014.  The city has been littered with billboards of Viola Davis looking fierce in her red leather jacket.  It was given the coveted 10 PM slot after two other series created by Shonda Rhimes, Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal,  creating a powerhouse line-up. Although How to Get Away with Murder was created by Peter Nowak, the show features a strong female lead, twisty plotting, and rapid pace-dialogue, all features we’ve come to know and love from Shonda Rhimes. So did the show live up to the hype? The episode started with a bang (literally) and we’re off. It’s bonfire night at a small eastern college,… Continue
scandal

SCANDAL, Season 4 Premiere

All summer we were teased by #WhereInTheWorldIsOliviaPope splashed across beach blimps and, of course, the pop culture terrain of cyberspace.  Not since Dallas’s legendary “Who Shot JR” cliffhanger has a series kept TV viewers in such a hot and bothered state of anticipation. At the close of Scandal’s season three, DC powerhouse crisis manager, Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington), weary and dispirited from her on-again off-again affair with married lover, President Fitzgerald Grant—Fitz as played by Tony Goldwyn—as well as the omnipresent machinations of her terrorist mother and B613 director father (think CIA but off-book and on steroids) flies off to parts unknown with lover, Jake Ballard (Scott Foley), the Navy captain turned B613 operative and, later, its director. Repeatedly Jake has enjoined Olivia to abandon the shadows (the corruption of DC, the White House,… Continue
themindyproject

THE MINDY PROJECT, Season 3, Episode 2

Mindy and Danny are having breakfast at his apartment. Mindy is recounting her dream from the night before about her jungle lover when Danny’s mom (Rhea Perlman, who played Carla on Cheers!) knocks at the door. Danny’s obviously uncomfortable with the situation. Mindy doesn’t pick up on any of the weirdness and introduces herself to Mrs. Castellano. Danny has never mentioned Mindy to his mom so Mrs. Castellano has no idea who Mindy is. In fact, Mrs. Castellano thinks Mindy is his cleaning lady and would like to know Mindy’s rates. Mindy still has no idea what’s going on and rates herself as an 8 in New York, a 10 in Chicago and a 4 in L.A. When Mrs. Castellano finally leaves, Mindy tells Danny she thinks his mom’s first visit went really well.… Continue
sonssmaller

SONS OF ANARCHY, Season 7, Episode 3

This week’s episode, “Playing With Monsters,” was perfectly titled — and one you won’t be able to forget.  Some crucial events unfolded; It’s very important to keep up because the final ride is in full throttle. We begin with the boys of sons watching a porn being filmed in their studio. Lila’s first take since she quit the business, I assume. (One of the actresses is played by real porn star Jemma Jamison.) Unser is in a deep conversation with Juice, seems that Juice needs a favor, but Unser will only help him if he points him to Tara’s killer. We find Gemma and Nero packing him up.  Gemma asks Nero if he and Jax are alright and Nero tells her they are fine. Jax meets with the Chinese about the bodies they found that… Continue
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SLEEPY HOLLOW, Season Two Premiere

When last we left the Sleepy Hollow gang: Abbie was trapped in Purgatory; Jenny was bleeding out in an overturned car; Captain Irving had turned himself in for murders he didn’t commit; Henry had revealed himself to be the second Horseman of the Apocalypse, War, as well as Ichabod and Katrina’s long lost son; and Ichabod had been wrapped in vines, stuck in a wooden box, and buried alive. Oh, and Katrina has been carted off by her creepy ex, the Headless Horseman. Given that, this episode starts off with a disorienting, banal intro. Although Ichabod’s initial “Leftenant” firmly reminds us of the relationship they built in the previous season, instead of fighting demons, Abbie is holding a cupcake and wishing a supremely irritated Ichabod Crane a happy birthday (more on that in a sec).… Continue
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WITCHES OF EAST END, Episode 10

After last week’s bombshell ending, this week’s events were far easier on my emotions and my wine/ice cream intake. Of course we start off with the hanging girls and that’s terrible enough but Joanna’s grieving and Wendy trying to be her rock is a double whammy of sad. I mean, Joanna is at such a loss, she tries to kill herself in the bathtub. She would’ve succeeded had Wendy not stepped in and saved the day. Joanna and Wendy did a remarkable job pulling us into the grief and helplessness of the situation. Add in Killian’s reaction when he barges in and finds Freya all displayed and prepared for burial and well, it’ll give you the feels, all of them. We still don’t know the full story behind Freddie’s extreme hatred of Killian but something… Continue
masters

MASTERS OF SEX, Episode 11

This was one of my favorite episodes yet. We watched everyone struggle with how people see then versus how they want to be seen. Masters and Virginia are once again at the hotel. Virginia asks if Bill has talked to his brother since the fight. Masters’ brother left town after their argument but Bill wants to contact with him to make things better. Yeah right, I’ll believe it when I see it. Masters and Virginia talk about the last time they had sex since it was the last time Bill was able to get it up. Masters wants Virginia to tell him how it felt; he palms his erection, trying to get hard to her mild dirty talk. The camera cuts away as they move together on the bed. When it cuts back we learn… Continue
themindyproject

THE MINDY PROJECT, Season Three Premiere

I’m ecstatic Mindy is back! Last season ended with Mindy and Danny making out like fiends on top of the Empire State Building. This season begins with a monologue from Danny; he waxes poetic about the journey it took for him and Mindy to find each other. Until Mindy hits him and tells him to shut up so they can have sex. Mindy and Danny have both tried to be open to different things. Mindy tries cantaloupe for Danny, and Danny tries on a horrific, tight, pink polo shirt for Mindy. You know, that kind of thing. It looks like their relationship is doing awesome. At the office, Peter comes to Danny for advice. Pete heard Danny is good with his mouth. At first Danny is pleased, but it soon turns to horror when he… Continue
sonssmaller

SONS OF ANARCHY, Episode Two

If the season premiere made you feel a little raw, then last night’s episode, titled “Toil And Till,” will leave you reeling. In all honesty, would you expect anything else from the show’s final season? We open with Jax in bed. He gets up to smoke a cigarette. Then the scene cuts to Juice doing the same thing. Then to Gemma sitting with Nero; Wendy walks in and greets them as Mom and Dad. Wendy asks Gemma about Abel starting pre-school. Gemma tells Wendy she knew about it from Tara. Then we see Jax riding his motorcycle with the other members. Juice take a knife and cuts Unser loose. He asks how he knew he was there. Unser just tells him he didn’t, but had a hunch. Juice tells Unser he can go and he… Continue
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SLEEPY HOLLOW, A Season One Primer

Were you one of the people who saw a preview of the Fox show Sleepy Hollow and thought, “That looks like trash,” thus missing out on the most awesome show of last year? Fear not! If you haven’t had the time or inclination to watch season one, but don’t want to be stuck at the loser’s table when everyone else is swooning over IchAbbie (except for the one person who keeps insisting Katrina is the love of Ichabod’s life—nah, man): read this handy dandy guide to Sleepy Hollow, season one. If you watched season one but forgot all the crazy shiz that happened and want a refresher: read this handy dandy guide to Sleepy Hollow, season one. Because this show is wonderfully insane, there was a lot cover. This first post will recap episodes… Continue
masters

MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Ten

While this season is quickly coming to a close it’s sure going out with a bang. In this episode we have a fistfight, a cure for impotence, and an epic case of sexual harassment. We start with Frank’s wife, Pauline, having fertility treatments with Dr. Masters. She’s talking to Masters about his relationship with Frank. She wants him to know they want a family and she’s not just talking about a baby. During their conversation the lights go out in the building. Masters barrels out of the room to find Betty, he wants to know what is going on. Betty had to send the electric bill in late because they were behind on other bills. Betty tells Bill that if they don’t rent out the office space on the same floor as his practice they… Continue
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WITCHES OF EAST END, Episode Nine

** SPOILER ALERT ** I drank all of my wine and had to resort to copious amounts of ice cream to get through this episode. So much happens and not just in the last two minutes (not that the last two minutes aren’t an action-packed sucker punch to the throat!) Ok, we will start at the top. We start off with Dash in a mood. Ingrid refuses to talk to him and I’m beginning to think he might really have feelings for her, not just of the sexual variety. Dash is trashing the attic yet again in all of his rage and discovers a box of old journals and spell books. Within the pages of these books, he finds an old-timey picture of Ingrid and knows he must get to her immediately. Freddie is still… Continue
sonssmaller

SONS OF ANARCHY, Season Seven Premiere

Welcome to the seventh and the final season of Sons Of Anarchy.  If you are still feeling raw from last season’s finale then hold on to your hats, because this episode was a doozy. The extended premiere was filled with everything we have grown to love from creator Kurt Sutter. He is an expert at keeping things under wraps from season to season.  Anything is possible and no one is safe.  This super-sized episode made that very clear! The opening scene shows us Jax in jail beating someone, with Gemma and the club caring for his boys. Unser is leaving flowers at Tara’s grave while Wendy is packing up to leave rehab. The scenes final moment is Jax carving a swastika in the man’s chest he was beating and removing a few of his… Continue
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WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode Eight

This episode kicks off in the forest. Note to all mortals: stay out of those woods people! Freddie and Tarkoff are busy cutting people up trying to find a proper host for the King. Sadly, since all of the victims are terrified and fighting the process, the transfer isn’t working. Tarkoff explains to Freddie, he needs to find a willing host, someone who trusts him. Oh poor Caroline, poor, poor, you’ll-be-dead-soon Caroline. That’s just the start of this week’s episode; stick with me, a lot of stuff is about to go down. It’s Freya’s thirtieth birthday and there will be a party and cake. I do have to say, it’s funny listening to Freya lament the fact that her life is in the dumps – turning thirty, still living at home with your mom, working… Continue
masters

MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Nine

Episode nine, titled Story of My Life (anyone else immediately get the New Direction song stuck in their head?) was all about euphemisms and misdirection. We start with Virginia once again in Dr. Madden’s office. She has decided to continue seeing the psychiatrist in lieu of Barbra. For someone who is good at so many things in life Virginia is an awful actor. She recounts Barbra’s story like she’s reading off a grocery list. Dr. Madden calls her on the emotionless account of her sexual abuse. It’s hard to tell, but I think the good doctor may be on to her. Masters and Libby are having Frank, his wife, and their mother over for dinner. Masters leaves right after supper saying he has to go to the office; of course he’s actually meeting Virginia at… Continue
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MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Eight

Denial was the name of the game in this week’s episode. Whether it was denying family, guilt, or their past, everyone worked hard to forget. We open with Masters meeting with an old college friend, Francis. Frank and his wife are having fertility problems and would like to consult with Masters. The entire conversation makes Masters uneasy. In fact, Bill tries to pass Frank off on another specialist but Frank refuses. Masters reaction to his friend’s appearance in his life is odd. Later, when Frank and his wife come in for testing, Masters once again seems uncomfortable with his friend’s presence. When the results come back Frank is found to have an extremely low sperm count. Bill makes an appointment for Frank and his wife to see a different specialist that can help them conceive.… Continue
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TRUE BLOOD, Series Finale

True Blood met its final death with the odd mix of zany plot twists, lingering grief, exploding vampires, dropped narratives, and awkward allegories about discrimination that defined all seven seasons of the series. Much of the episode was dedicated to Bill and Sookie arguing about Bill’s impending death.  He desperately wants Sookie to kill him with her faerie powers. Not only will this release Bill from the burdens of being a vampire, but will mean that Sookie is no longer fae. After seeking counsel on the issue from a range of somewhat unlikely individuals, including Jason and Reverend Daniels, Sookie agrees to sever the ties between herself and the world of vampires by killing Bill. Eric and Pam, meanwhile, serve as something resembling the comic relief as they kill off Team Yakanomo and take Sarah… Continue
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WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode Seven

This episodes kicks off with two of the worst things that could happen while having sex. Freddie and his new chick, Caroline are enjoying each other all naked and such when Freddie’s Mom, Joanna walks in and sees aplenty. Across the way, Killian and Eva are going at it
(as they are wont to do all the freaking time) when suddenly Killian sees an altered version of Eva — or did he see the real Eva? Either way, what he saw was a total boner killer since Eva looked like a craggy old witch, warts on the face and all. Speaking of things that you know are going to turn sexual, Dash surprises Ingrid at the library and invites her to the East End Arts Coalition’s black tie gala, as friends of course (riiiiight, just… Continue
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MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Seven

I’m not sure how what to think about the latest episode. It was a lot of fast forwarding to set up future storylines. We begin by jumping ahead five months. Lester has come back from Hollywood after being jilted by his lover as well as the movie business. He will once again be documenting Masters and Johnson’s study. Lester’s new obsession with documentary filmmaking has him recording the interactions between the staff in the study as well as the participants. It’s a twist that shows how deeply Masters’ study, as well as his relationship with Virginia, has touched everyone in his life. After Masters was fired from his last job he opened his own clinic. His fertility patients were reluctant to follow him to his new location. With little to do as an OBGYN, Masters… Continue
MayinSummer

Movie Review: MAY IN THE SUMMER

Cherien Dabis’s May in the Summer (Dabis is the writer, director, and star of the film, as well as a co-producer) follows May and her sisters – who all grew up in the U.S. — on a visit to Amman, Jordan to prepare for May’s wedding. The wedding is the central plot device of the film, and in some ways is also its central flaw. May’s devoutly Christian mother (Hiam Abbass) disapproves of her Palestinian Muslim fiancé Ziad (Alexander Siddig in almost no screen time whatsoever), who is a high-profile scholar in the U.S.  Additionally, May and Ziad are trying to hide their cold feet from Ziad’s mother who is deliriously into wedding planning, while May juggles the dramas of her divorced parents and the twenty-something growing pains of her sisters. Aspects of the film… Continue
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MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Six

This was one of my favorite episodes yet! Lillian is undergoing radiation. Her radiologist is more concerned with Lillian’s head placement than the words coming out of her mouth. She notices that he’s ignoring her and declares she was raised by vampires and had sex with a corpse just to see if she can get a reaction from him. I love it when we get to see Lillian’s sense of humor. At her following radiation appointment, Lillian asks the same radiologist to give her the truth about her health. She trusts him because he sees her as a thing more than a person and won’t spare her feelings. The radiologist tells her that the radiation will slow her cancer’s progression but only by a little bit. He then proceeds to tell her she will lose… Continue
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WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode Six

This episode kicks off with Hudson, Ingrid’s library co-worker, popping in to grab something he left behind only to find an obviously be-spelled Ingrid in a pile of disarray sprawled out on the floor. In an odd sing-songy voice, Ingrid tells him she’s so glad he was chosen and seconds later, the Madragora and his creepy tentacles attack poor Hudson. When the group looking for Ingrid finally finds him, a freshly bad guy carved up and branded Hudson tells them “he wanted to wear my skin but it wasn’t a good fit” and then rounds the final corner on the death train. The take away should be, don’t befriend a witch in this town, if we did a roll call, I think we’d find only one or two mortals remain in the immortal friend circle.… Continue
TrueBlood

TRUE BLOOD, Episode Nine

With just two more episodes to go and shocked by Bill’s refusal to drink Sarah Newlin’s blood, Team Everyone Else tries to reason with him.  Sookie even slaps him. Twice.  She goes for a third time, but Eric stops her. Jessica is just as upset, but her slap is more metaphorical.  She demands Bill release her and he gives an awesome speech about how proud he is of the vampire she’s grown up to be.  This is the first parenthood-related moment of this episode, but not the last, and we’re all pretty sure that Sookie is still having sad vampire Bill’s sad vampire baby. Meanwhile, Sam’s plotline gets wrapped up with him almost entirely off camera.  He’s left Sookie a note at his place about leaving town with Nicole, because he can’t stand the thought… Continue
thegiver

Movie Review: THE GIVER

Based on Lois Lowry’s novel, as a film The Giver manages to be unsatisfying as entertainment while also, somehow, being emotionally effective. If you’re not already familiar with Lowry’s novel, the plot takes place in a centrally planned society that has eliminated difference, conflict, and emotion. The Giver is the story of Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), who is training to be the one person allowed cultural memory and emotion in his society, referred to as The Community. While Jonas is supposed to keep his learning secret, he is ebullient at discoveries like music, dance, and colors.  He stops taking his government mandated medication that suppresses emotion, and shares these items with his family and with his two wary best friends, drone pilot Asher (Cameron Monaghan), and nursery worker Fiona (Odeya Rush). Eventually, given the knowledge of… Continue
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MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Five

Even though there were big changes for Masters, for me this episode was all about Libby and her dramatic change from the first season to the present. We begin with Masters giving Virginia a key to her office at Buell Green Hospital. Instead of being excited Virginia is upset Masters would just assume she would leave Memorial. Virginia wants a contract detailing her job description as well as assurance that if Bill were to leave the hospital she would still have a job. While I understand Virginia’s apprehension over leaving her secure job at Memorial for this new endeavor with Bill, I was surprised with how upset Virginia became. Hasn’t she been complaining this whole time that Masters has been stringing her along? Now that she has the chance to work with Bill she isn’t… Continue
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WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode Five

After taking a week off, Witches of East End kicks off with Joanna doing a solitary ritual in the woods, to put Victor’s soul at rest. Her mourning period is interrupted by a black form flyby and immediately Joanna knows a Mandragora is loose in the woods. Finally, blue sex leech Avatar guy has a species type! Mandragoras are some of the worst creatures in all of Asgard and almost no one has survived a brush with these nasty dudes. Mandragoras develop parasitic sexual relationships with their mate and even pull energy from the mate when they are not feeding. If you kill or injure a Mandragora, the mate suffers the same fate – not good news for Ingrid. Joanna knows the only person who has ever gone to battle with a Mandragora and lived… Continue
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TRUE BLOOD, Episode Eight

We’re three episodes from the end of True Blood forever, and this week the show actually manages to wrap up two plots (Tara’s and Violet’s), while continuing to reopen Hoyt’s, and completely ignoring that Sam even exists. The episode opens with Sarah Newlin begging Eric to kill her so that she can be the new messiah (and Eric having been the king of bad choices regarding Sarah’s sister), Eric drinks from her, gets cured, and leaves her alive. Back in Bon Temps, Sookie and Bill follow-up last episode’s sad sex with a sad post-coital chat about a plot from seasons three and four you might not even remember. This involved Sophie-Ann wanting Bill to bring Sookie to her, and Sookie wants to know why. Bill reveals that Sophia-Anne wanted to breed Sookie, continuing to foreshadow… Continue
CatherineMann

SHELTER ME by Catherine Mann

Once I read that Shelter Me was about an animal rescue, that was it: I had to read it.  I love animals, especially dogs, and I’ve rescued three of them myself.  Like Lacey, I would save them all if only I had the time and the money.  The subject matter is near and dear to my heart, so this book got bumped up to the top of Mt.TBR. Shelter Me destroyed me. DESTROYED me. Not because it was sad, but because each of the damaged, grieving characters found their HEA.  I grew to like them all so much, so it was gratifying that they were able, with a rescued canine’s assistance, to put their grief behind them and embrace a brighter future.  Yup, I am a complete sap for stories like this. Sierra and Mike are… Continue
unbroken

UNBROKEN by Maisey Yates

In Unbroken, Cade Mitchell, former Rodeo star, finally finds a purpose in life after an accident forces him to retire. And while he leans on his best friend, Amber Johnson, to help him realize his dream, he discovers that the love of a good woman can heal all sorts of wounds. Amber and Cade are best friends and have been for a long time.  I was a bit skeptical on how the friends to lovers storyline was going to work.  But I was pleased with how Maisey Yates developed their story. There has always been a deep love between the two, but it took a rouse to ward off a potential threat to Amber’s family ranch to discover the love they share was so much more than they imagined. Amber was a tough character… Continue