Tuesday, May 24, 2011

TV SHOWS - Shows we'll be seeing next season


It is that time of year again as the major network shows in America that started way back in the Fall (Autumn if you prefer) come to an end. Some shows like Smallville will be gone for good while others will be back in a matter of a few months when September rolls around again. So as you know if you read this blog regularly I take my TV entertainment seriously probably as a result of being starved of engaging television here in the UK.

So let us discuss the shows that will be returning.

The Vampire Diaries
 


This is the top CW show apparently and I can see why it is compelling and I think a significant part of that is due to the book source material but the writers have clearly built on that and made it into something that is quite gripping to watch. I remember the first episode I watched and after that I think I gave it a miss for the next like 6 or so and forgot about it but then somehow I got sucked in watching the show. 

Apparently the show is considered a major draw for young women more so than for men. Looking at the source material that makes sense vampire books about a girl caught between two hot young twenty something looking vampires? The show though takes itself down a more energetic route though there are no end of longing looks and jaw clenches supplied by Paul Wesley and Ian Somerhalder.

I can’t wait to see what the future holds for our favourite supernatural ensemble especially if certain dead ex girlfriends hang around for more than a few episodes in the new season.

The Big Bang Theory



Hilarious geek fun with lots and lots of superhero t-shirts. This show shouldn’t work but somehow it does Kaley Cuoco may not be my cup of tea but she is very funny in this harking back to her time on 8 Simple Rules I guess.

House


Well this was always going to get renewed we can’t get enough of Gregory House and his strange almost psychotic ways. The thing that keeps people coming back to House other than the crazy writing like that whole zombie attack day dream.

Castle


I love this show it is a guilty pleasure, I almost entirely missed the sensation of Firefly and Nathan Fillion but I must say he is so very charismatic and engaging in this role. The chemistry between him and Stana Katic is awesome and totally believable plus when you see how Castle is with his daughter you know that even network shows can feature solid acting.

Chuck 


Why oh why. They need to cancel this stuff it has gone on far too long. At first it was a fairly interesting show but by the second season it had already run out of gas but somehow it keeps coming back from the dead even if they have nothing better to talk about. 

Well apparently the show will only be back for 10 episodes or so then that will be the end of that.

Glee


Glee was out of this world in the first season going from the ridiculous to the sublime. The second season has been a hell of a lot more hit and miss the celebrity appearances have hurt more than they have helped in my view but that was to be expected with everyone wanting to be a part of an excellent show looking to establish itself. I remember how long it took me to get on board with Glee just thinking that a show about a school filled with a load of 20 somethings was bound to be a little lame.

Nikita


The only spy-fi show worth watching if you ask me. At first I was thoroughly unconvinced that the little weird foreign made show La Femme Nikita should have a reboot I really liked it. Peta Wilson was the Nikita for me and MAggie Q has some big boots to fill. This show feels entirely different from the former the American-ness of it stamped on it thoroughly but still even with that the kind of plot twists and engaging writing that kept me watching the first series shows through occasionally here too.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

News with comments - Tech stuff


Limewire – Next on the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of
America) list it appears and they have their man. Limewire is dead
well the company is anyway and the default software it releases will
no longer allow users to search and download files from all the dark
places of the Internet. Limewire’s settlement was $105m, hardly a
paltry amount but nowhere near the $1 billion the RIAA were looking
for at the beginning of their suit. As always there is a modified
version of the software that will allow users to continue on their
evil pirate ways (arrrrrrr).



Those who follow such things will know that RIAA has already done
much the same to the once might Kazaa (known to me as those dudes who
popped up after Napster bit the dust) the settlement that Kazaa had to
be pay was $115m in case you like to keep store. Makes you wonder who
is next but I would think it might be the torrent based websites that
will get more of the attention in coming months but we will have to
wait and see.

Want to see something really scary?
Then take a look at this American Bill currently under consideration
by the US Senate.

IP Act

The Actual Act

Some comments on it

The first link is the real nuts and bolts and the second is for the
rest of us whose heads exploded when we tried to read the actual draft
bill. From time to time raw legislation will do that to mere humans.
The bill aims to target sites that offer pirated material and
counterfeit products. The powers of this bill will allow US law makers
to block the domain names of offended sites and even force search
engines to pretend that these often popular sites don’t exist in
search results.

People describe the Internet as the last bastion of lawlessness but
this controversial act seeks to wrangle the pirates and
counterfeiters. As you can see from the above stories this is only one
in a number of ways that the forces of government and business are
fighting back against the previously untouchable and hard to target
internet copyright infringers.


WIKI LEADER HATES SUPER INJUNCTIONS

Just in case you were wondering I am referring to the founder
of Wikipedia Jimmy Wales, so many famous
Wikis around these days it can be hard to tell.

"They should be done away with as quickly as possible. There should be
no law constraining people from publishing legally obtained, factual
information," he said.

Now I don’t want to get off on a rant here but when I look at the
above station my eyes do the bug out thing and I wonder if he has
really thought through the extreme ends encompassed by that statement.

LEGALLY OBTAINED

That particular label is an interesting one, I think back to the case
of the poor business secretary, Vince Cable getting roasted as a
result of speaking to reporters pretending to be constituents (very
pretty constituents) now what they did wasn’t illegal but it sets out
one hell of a precedent in how you might live your life. I don’t want
a situation where every time someone is nice to me or seems talkative
I need to whip out a legal waiver for them to sign and demand ID along
with some DNA so I can sue their asses later when they turn out to be
reporters.

This is not the case of so-called investigative reporting
when you get a reporter pretending to be a criminal in order to catch
out celebrities, because apparently members of the public themselves
would NEVER agree to do something illegal or immoral if asked to do so
by someone in a position of power, I digress this is the case of an MP
doing what he is paid for talking to his constituents (fakes ones)
although of course he did very much say the wrong thing.

Maybe we should charge the newspaper involved for the time they took
from the public with this little gambit of theirs.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Entertainment - Game of Thrones Review





What is it?
HBO’s new adaption of “A Song of Ice and Fire” by RR Martin an epic fantasy series in a similar vein to Legend of the Seeker and Lord of the Rings. The marketing campaign and build up to this series has been huge and when HBO is involved you know that you are going to get a solid series.

What happened?
The first episode of Game of Thrones introduces us to the House of Stark who act as the Wardens of the North in the 7 Kingdoms. The deposed King Viserys Targaryen and his young sister Daenerys meet Khal Drogo a warlord who may allow them to reclaim their lost Kingdom with his nomadic armies. We learn about the wall that protects the 7 Kingdoms from the frozen north where barbarian tribes and mysterious creatures of lore are said to dwell, the Black Watch man the 300 mile long wall to protect the Northern borders.

What I thought
The adaption was incredible very closely linked to the original text including a few speeches that I remembered. The settings are great and feel like they have jumped straight out of the book. I have seen a lot of books converted for film and TV and this one looks excellent. The actors may not look exactly as I thought of as the characters but that is somewhat unavoidable especially when you think about things like the age of a certain princess bride.

For anyone who is a fan of the books which I had known nothing about prior to the marketing push by HBO I would recommend this show. For those who have not read the books there needs to be some caveats, yes this is a sword and shield epic fantasy but it is also a show for adults, there is a lot of sex and probably more swearing this is not something you and the family can sit down to watch.

If I had to compare it to other shows I would agree with some press story that compared it to a medieval “Wire” the long running cop and robbers show based in Baltimore. You can also compare it to epics like Lord of the Rings and shows like Legend of the Seeker just with more adult content.

Update:
Since I wrote this I have caught the next 2 episodes and I have to say things keep getting better and better things are shaping up nicely and of course things move a lot more quickly in the show as compared to the book. It is nice though having all the extra little scenes you read in the book informing you about exactly what is going on and people’s motivations for the things they do. I don’t know what else to really say without getting precariously close to spoilers.

So grab your nicest doublet and settle in for a great tale.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

World of Warcraft - The Return 1st Impressions




So I did it I paid up for a month of WoW time and decided to take a step into the world of Azeroth again. It felt like a comfortable glove being slipped back on I did not know what I expected maybe an empty Orgrimmar or a quieter one at least. What I found was a city buzzing as you would expect it to, I also found a game that was running a hell of a lot faster than it has in the past. Nice and smooth to say the least I guess patches do more than just add new content.

I chose to spend my time finishing the levelling process for my paladin getting her to level 84 so just one final slog remaining to go on that front. Never mind the hunter on 81 and the priest stuck on 82 for far too long now, indeed it is so easy to slip back into things on WoW. I am not sure what I will get up to next time on here either go on with the whole levelling thing on one of my characters or perhaps see if there is any gold to be made now that those changes to Jewelcrafting went through.

I am sorry this is so short but that is all I have to say for now.
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