Movie Review: Pitch Perfect 2

May 28, 2015

Pitch Perfect 2
115 minutes
Rated PG-13
Directed by Elizabeth Banks
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld

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Grade: C-

The aca-bitches are back, but that doesn’t mean the sequel isn’t better than the original (and we all know how much I loved the first film). I know this is a ridiculous question, but did we really need a second Pitch Perfect movie? No, we didn’t, but that’s the case for more than half the sequels that exist. It’s just a shame when these films are made for financial reasons, leaving behind any kind of creative standard.

So where do I start? Since Pitch Perfect 2 is almost a mirror image of the original, let’s break it down. How are we supposed to get the three-time national a cappella champions off their pedastal and down to underdogs again? By opening the film with a failed performance that involved Fat Amy flashing the President of the United States. The consequences are rough and blown out of proportion, they’re suspended all the way up until the international a cappella championships, where they have no chance at all since the world hates America. You can already see how this film is going to end.

Most of the cast are from the original, including Beca and Fat Amy who are seniors now. Oh, and Chloe is still around because she wanted to fail classes just to continue her Barden Bellas run. But with all of these girls returning, we need a newcomer to keep everything fresh like the original. Enter Emily Junk (Steinfeld), a freshman legacy Bella who, like Beca, is a little different than the others. She’s an aspiring songwriter (hold your gasps, we’re just getting started).

Now what’s next? Oh, the Bellas need an enemy just like the Treblemakers. A group who is so damn good and intimidating that they second guess their every move and makes their chances seem slim-to-none. Enter the German team Das Sound Machine. They’re intense, scary, but achieve perfection at the a cappella game. They’re basically robots that can sing.

So what are the Bellas to do? They try and reinvent their sound, but fail miserably. They lose another riff-off because Emily decided to throw in an original song she wrote into the mix, which is a big no-no in a cappella competitions. Seriously, no one has ever done that before, so it would be entirely groundbreaking if somehow her original song played a huge part in this movie, like how Beca taught the girls the art of mash-ups. Just saying…

Despite how poor the plot is, how shaky the acting is, how silly and ridiculous moments are, and how predictable every scene ends up being Pitch Perfect 2 is exactly the way it’s meant to be. It’s guilty pleasure fun for all ages. It’s the movie your girlfriend wants to see as much as the thirteen-year-old girl down the block. It’s the movie you sort of secretly like and wouldn’t turn off if it came on TV. It’s like that weird kid in the corner of the cafeteria who is totall content eating by himself. You might not admit he’s a nice kid, but you understand he knows exactly who he is despite what you think. That’s Pitch Perfect 2. The movie is bad on plenty of levels, but it simply doesn’t care. It’s relentless in its unfunny jokes, auto-tuned covers, and undeveloped characters, but it does it with a smile. All that matters is that Pitch Perfect 2 is pretty enough to get away with its flaws. Ain’t that something to go through college with?


Pitch Perfect Sucks

May 14, 2015

On the eve of the sequel’s release, I want to revisit the original film that debuted in 2012 and was quite the sleeper hit by grossing over $113 million on a $17 million budget (according to Box Office Mojo). Even with those numbers, there weren’t that many people who actually saw it in the theaters, but once it hit the DVD shelves and premium movie channels, everyone was talking about Pitch Perfect. What was the craze about? This was a question that bothered me for a long time because for most movies with a cult following, I can understand it. The question if Harrison Ford was a replicant himself in Blade Runner; Ed Norton’s inner dialogue in Fight Club; Jake Gyllenhaal’s world ending in Donnie Darko; the inexplicably catchy and hilarious tunes in This is Spinal Tap, etc. But what does Pitch Perfect have to deserve this after-theater craze? During my time trying to figure it out, I came down with one conclusion. Pitch Perfect is really a terrible movie. Here are the reasons why…

1. Isn’t Barden University a bit sexist? Having an all-male a cappella group, the Treblemakers (great name btw), who are apparently the badasses of the school.

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2. And then there are the Bellas, an all-female a cappella group who only sing songs from women. I guess the they’re a few steps behind in Barden University (actually, that does explain a lot). 

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3. So Pitch Perfect is about an a cappella group trying to win their regional and national championship. Sounds pretty much like Glee, no? Oh, it also steals the comedic commentators from Best in Show. By the way, why does an a cappella competition need commentators?

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4. Projectile vomiting is funny in I Love You Man…

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5. It’s even kind of funny in The Exorcist…

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6. But it’s not funny in Pitch Perfect. It’s actually quite stupid.

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7. The cast of college students is way too old here. I guess they’re copying Grease in this aspect. Anna Kendrick (27 years old at the release of Pitch Perfect) and Skylar Astin (25 years old at the release) sure don’t look like college freshman. And it’s annoyingly cliché to know that these two are going to end up together right from the beginning.

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8. Here’s a great observation of college life from the creators of Pitch Perfect. Freshman of Barden University feel it’s necessary to lug bags and bags and bags of stuffed animals to their dorm room. If I had a dime for every time I saw this on move-in day, I’d have no money.

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9. Every freshman gets a rape whistle. Yeah, I doubt anyone will need that in a school where a cappella is accepted.

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10. Something that Pitch Perfect does get right is that awkward moment when you meet your weird roommate for the first time.

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At least Benji sort of gets that a cappella groups aren’t that cool, “Treblemakers. The rock stars of a cappella. The messiahs of Barden, well you know not including athletes, frat guys, or actual cool people.” 

11. “Organized nerd singing. This is great!” I really thought Jesse was being sarcastic, you know since he called it ‘nerd singing’ but turns out he’s completely into it.

12. Speaking of Jesse, played by Skylar Astin, he’s the dude in the back from the Tony award-winning Spring Awakening! Pretty impressive.

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13. As for Anna Kendrick, she was a young Tony award-nominee but let’s face it, she got her music fame by flipping cups…

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14. Let me get this straight. Apparently Beca hasn’t been going to classes for a month plus she doesn’t have any friends, and to negotiate with her, her dad wants her to “get involved” and join clubs? How about getting your daughter to shape up and attend her classes? He even goes as far as to tell her if she simply “tries” then he’ll give her his blessing to quit college. Father of the year!

15. McLovin’ at the auditions, “This shit is real life.” No, this shit is the furthest away from real life as possible. 

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16. By my count, there are 33 people who auditions to join an a cappella group. At least they’re fairly accurate by the disappointing turnout. 

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17. But don’t forget about the late-comer, Beca! She reaches back into her bag of tricks to steal the show… by flipping some more cups!

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18. Those a cappella groups sure do know how to throw a party! Outside on campus with a keg (though it’s never proven what’s in the keg, so I can only assume it’s a keg of Sunny D) and a lot of Solo cups. I’m so mad I couldn’t make that one! Though I wasn’t crying alone in my bedroom like Benji.

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19. Arguably the worst joke of the entire movie: A toner is a musical boner. 

20. During their first performance at a frat party, one guy says it perfectly, “This makes my beer taste bad.” Yes it does, bro. Yes it does.

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21. Beca chooses a really strange time to mention her parents’ divorce. The writers seemed to randomly throw this story-line in.

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22. “Not liking movies is like not liking puppies.” – Jesse. He’s right, and I love movies… good movies.

23. Not even halfway through the film and it’s unbearable to watch Anna Kendrick, who is a very good actress. If you want to see her give a good performance, watch Up in the Air.

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24. The memorable Riff-Off scene takes place in an empty pool. I guess they’re not too worried about the constant reverb and echo while free-styling.

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25. I don’t know about you guys, but that other acappella group sounded pretty damn good singing “Like a Virgin.” Too bad there isn’t enough room in the movie to throw in another a cappella group. What a shame.

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26. I cannot stress enough how strange it would be to be walking around campus one night and witness four acapella groups participating in a riff-off. Yet, this is normal for Barden University.

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27. It’s strange how much Pitch Perfect pays tribute to The Breakfast Club, a film taken place in high school, except it’s actually a good film about life from different people’s perspectives and backgrounds, while Pitch Perfect is about winning a singing competition.

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28. Regionals. Then Semi-finals. Then Finals? To repeat myself, this is basically Glee without any teachers, gym coaches, or someone in a wheelchair.

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29. The commentators give these statements, and I can’t help thinking it’s what would be said if audiences could comment during Pitch Perfect: “Refreshing yet displeasing to the eye.” and “… is like an elephant dart to the public’s face.” Indeed.

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30. By the way, I’m pretty sure a $5 trophy can’t shatter glass like this.

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31. Beca wants to “change the face of a cappella” by remixing and mashing up songs. How original.

32. You know what else isn’t funny, showing Rebel Wilson getting hit with a burrito.

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33. If the Bellas and the Treblemakers really hate each other, why would they give the Bellas a ride after their bus breaks down? Sounds like an easy way to disqualify your foes to me.

34. Would the Bellas really place right behind the Footnoes at the Semi-Finals? Are there only three groups performing?

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35. This was a real stupid way to show how the Footnotes lead singer was still in high school.

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36. Why are the commentators the ones to deliver the news that the Footnotes are disqualified? And why do they visit the singer’s home? And why did his parents allow him to break these rules?

37. Let’s count all the times they say “Aca-something”! Ready?

Aca-scuse me?
Aca-people
Aca-initiations
Aca-bitches
Aca-awesome
Aca-believe it
Aca-Gods
Aca-awkward

When did this gag become funny? It never did.

38. And then there was this aca-awkward 40 second scene where Beca briefly confronts her dad about the divorce. Seriously, tell me how this divorce story-line is relevant at all.

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39. Once again, puking in this movie isn’t funny.

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40. But doing a vomit-angel totally is!

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41. In the end, the Bellas kick ass and win the competition. Oh, and predictably enough Beca and Jesse kiss. All the thirteen-year-old girls can die happy now.

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42. Listen, I have no problem with Pitch Perfect. It’s actually one of my guilty pleasure movies. Just don’t try to convince me that it’s actually a good film, because it’s obviously not. The only reason to watch this film is for the hot chicks.

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Let’s see how Pitch Perfect 2 hold up. It should do quite well since the first one set the bar pretty damn low.


Orphan Black – “Transitory Sacrifices Of Crisis”

April 27, 2015

Season Three, Episode Two

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Grade: B+

After the season three premiere picked up where we left off and explored the story of Project Castor, we slowed down the pace in “Transition Sacrifices of Crisis.” This is when Orphan Black is at its strongest; When the show is able to focus in on specific characters and singular story-lines, without letting the twisty mythology weigh down every scene. That being said, it’s crazy to think how much the show has changed since its first season. The number of characters has sky-rocketed, so we know we can’t see every character each week. This week we’re without Rachel and Delphine but we do get to see Cal and Paul.

But let’s start with Rudy and Seth, two brothers from Project Castor who deeply care for one another. Unlike Project Leda, these Castor brothers have been brought up together with military values, which is why they all have that soldier-look and feel to them. If anything they’re a little bit too close, as the poor girl would admit from the beginning scene. As we’ve spent two seasons with the Project Leda clones, we’re not given a lot of time to learn about the Project Castor clones before they’re driven right in the middle of the plot. That being said, I’m still not exactly sure what they’re after and how Paul plays into the whole thing.

What’s interesting is how everyone is looking for the same thing, which is the original genome sequence that the Duncans apparently had. Cosima and Scott talk to a Dyad doctor who tells them this, more than anyone has told them before. We also learn that Rudy and Seth are looking for the original genome sequence too because Seth is “glitching” and they’re desperate for some answers. So desperate in fact, that Rudy breaks into Felix’ loft and points a gun at Kira to force any information out of Sarah. The problem here is that she doesn’t know anything. They should be barking up Cosima instead, but I’m sure they’ll figure that out eventually. Seth glitches uncontrollably in the middle of  a fight with Cal and Rudy puts him out of his misery with two bullets in the chest.

This brings up a few thoughts about all of this. The Castor clones know that Sarah is valuable, but still are under orders from Paul. So they can’t hurt Sarah, but why did Rudy let Cal off the hook? It seemed like a real convenient way for Michiel Huisman to be killed so he can continue to do the nasty with Daenerys on Game of Thrones, but immediately after they roll out a story-line where Cal and Kira are going away from all the madness to protect the little girl. It was a nice, emotional moment for Tatiana Maslany to play and it definitely paid off. But with Kira gone, now it’s finally time to get down to business!

Meanwhile, Cosima is feeling better though no one really knows why. It’s nice how her and Scott are getting closer with Delphine out of the way, but I still don’t know if I trust that he knows about the book. As for Alison, her and Donnie always provide a good amount of comic relief for the episode. This time around, Alison needs money and decides to go into the pill-dealing business that her dealer is leaving behind for college. Yes, it feels like Weeds, but hey, I’ll watch the Hendrix deal pills all day long over Nancy Botwin.

There is still a lot for me to understand with Orphan Black, but for now it’s certainly a thrilling ride to be on. While the show will always be at least somewhat about who you can and cannot trust, this season we’re diving into what much the sisters of Project Leda and the brothers of Project Castor mean to each other. After all, they’re clones and those clones got to stick together, right? Are we headed to a clones vs. humans war?! Probably not, but then again I have no clue what’s going to happen next.

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Game of Thrones – “The House of Black and White”

April 20, 2015

Season Five, Episode Two

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Grade: B+

Power. It’s what everyone wants in Game of Thrones, but only one person can rule at a time. At this very moment, it seems like Daenerys is the most powerful in Mereen with the Unsullied (though without her dragons she loses a lot of points). Her power is why we’ve been spending so much time with her in the early going of the fifth season. It’s also the reason why Varys and Tyrion feel it’s important to travel to her. Does she really have what it takes to rule? We get a glimpse of that in this episode.

As ruler, one must always make difficult decisions that can be crucial to keeping order. There is no doubt that Daenerys is good at heart and wants the best for the world and the people who live in it, but when she has to be tough she can often let her emotions get in the way of her judgement. By all means, her decision to execute Mossador makes sense to continue the law and justice she’s trying to enforce, but he murdered the man who killed an Unsullied. Mossador has always been one of Daenerys biggest supporters, but she’s trying her best to unify the former slaves and the masters. I’m not sure if that’s going to be possible, but that’s not going to stop her from trying.

Meanwhile, Stannis rules with the way of fear. He’s tough. He knows that he’s tough and everyone else around him knows it too. It’s his fearlessness that forces people to follow him and have his way. Once you appear weak, the people will no longer respect and follow you. It’s a similar approach to how Tywin ran things, but we all saw where that got him. At the Wall, Stannis wants to promote Jon Snow away from Castle Black and as his adviser of the North as Jon Stark. He never intends to accept the offer, but is surprised when the Night’s Watch nominates him as the new Lord Commander. It was a great scene that turned Snow’s misfortunes into fortune very quickly.

As for Cersei, she’s doing her best to act the role of ruler at King’s Landing, but without much success. We all know her son isn’t fit to rule anything anytime soon, but she’ll also never have the respect of the council nor the people despite her royal name. That doesn’t leave her with much options, but for now she is most definitely the acting ruler. As for Jaime, he’s off with Bronn to Dorne to try and bring Myrcella back. Personally, I cannot wait to see more of their adventure together.

Finally, Arya gets invited into The House of Black and White with Jaqen H’gar, which should be the start to a very exciting future. What’s in store for her in Braavos? I honestly have no idea, but it’s good to know she still remembers the people she wants to kill. Oh, and that she got her coin back.

Last but not least:

– Poor Brienne. No one wants her on their side. Sexist pigs! But no, it’s the Starks who don’t trust her, which is that much more frustrating. At least she saved Podrick so we can follow them following Sansa.

– I’m still surprise how Petyr Baelish is still around and relevant. But what’s his endgame with Sansa?

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Mad Men – “Severance”

April 7, 2015

Season Seven, Episode Eight

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Grade: B+

And we’re back for the last seven episodes of Mad Men, and like AMC is saying this is truly the end of an era. So what’s new with our SC&P characters? It’s 1970 and SC&P has been bought out by McCann, which means the partners are filthy rich. We see that in an early scene at the diner when Roger leaves a $100 bill for a check that was only $11. According to the Internet, $100 in 1970 is about $600 today. Not like these guys needed more money, but now they’re practically swimming in it.

That diner scene is an interesting one, because it’s clear that Don and Roger have returned to their old ways of living with their snarky attitudes, women hanging on every arm, and plenty of cash to throw around. But Don keeps his eyes on the waitress, Diane, and asks if they ever met before. He’s intrigued by a memory that involves her, but he can’t place it. Meanwhile, Don seems like he’s enjoying being single again as he spends the night with a beautiful woman at his apartment. He doesn’t even allow red wine spilled on the carpet, or one of Megan’s old earrings under the bed to derail his mood. In a way, Don Draper is back.

Back in the office, Peggy and Joan meet with Topaz Pantyhose to explain that their line of tights are being squashed by the cheap, easily accessible product by Hanes. When Don is asked, he suggests they simply rebrand and sell the product in Macy’s stores. Is it really that easy to do? This is coming from the man who changed his identity, so for him maybe it is. Draper has a dream of another woman at casting, but this time it’s Rachel Menken, one of his earliest love interests in Mad Men. The dream obviously affects him and when he attempts to get in contact with her, he learns that she recently passed away from leukemia.

This somehow makes Don revisit the diner to get in touch with the waitress, who has some qualities that resemble Rachel. Don doesn’t know exactly what he’s searching for, but it ends up with them hooking up in the back alley of the diner. Diana considers this as the repayment for the $100 left before, but Don is more confused than ever. He eventually drops by Rachel’s shiva to pay his respect, but her sister Barbara is clear that he’s not wanted and that Rachel didn’t need him in her life. Once again, Don leaves confused.

“Severance” takes us along Don’s concern that he might not have lived the life he wanted to. He’s been married twice and divorced twice, a fact that pains him to admit as he hides behind his parade of beautiful women. Maybe somewhere between his marriages there was a woman whom he truly loved, but let get away. When you cut ties with people or things, there will be plenty of room for regret when you’re not happy. As for Don Draper, he looks like he’s living the dream, but looks can be deceptive. Take a look deep into his eyes, past the cigarette smoke and the alcohol buzz, and also past the fake smile and the expensive suit. What do you really see when you look at Don Draper?

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The episode also takes a look at Peggy and how she temporarily sees her life beyond her work. She’s a fun, free-willed woman who doesn’t have a problem with flying to Paris with a man she just met (aside from how she can’t find her passport). But all of that fades away when she returns back to the real world where she works too hard for too long to watch her colleagues (who she probably has more talent than) flaunt their riches in front of her. But she’s a fighter and she’ll always be, except for when she really discovers what she’s fighting for.

As for Ken, his severance is quite obvious. His father-in-law has just retired and then Ken gets fired because of a past spat with McCann. After his small tantrum, he realizes this is an opportunity, not a failure, and is rewarded by taking over the advertising department of his father-in-law’s company. Just as Pete put it, they’re screwed.

What does this all mean for the final episodes of Mad Men? Is it going to take the approach of showing how everyone’s story will be branching away from SC&P? Will it dive into Don’s life and the life he will be living towards? Or will it just be another month in the life of these men and women who all are missing something in their lives, and cannot figure out how to obtain it?

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Will James Corden Last?

April 2, 2015

If you’ve been following my blog at all for the past couple of years, you’ll know that I loved The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. In my opinion, he was the most natural when it came down to hosting late night television. I’m not saying he was the most comfortable, because all of the veterans are comfortable at doing what they do. I’m saying that he had a flow about him where everything that was going on felt like a conversation you were eavesdropping on. It was great and something I thoroughly enjoyed watching every single night.

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When CBS announced that James Corden would be replacing Ferguson, my first thought was, “Who?” But then I watched Into the Woods and Mr. Corden was great in it. I then watched a few interviews he did and I immediately thought, “Boy, he is likeable!” Corden has this boyish charm that is infectious, which is a great thing to have in late night television. So I was set up in my bedroom, eagerly awaiting for James Corden’s first show as the new Late Late Show host. Just like everyone’s first time, Corden was nervous and the show was slightly bumpy, but overall it was very satisfying.

There are several things that Corden is doing to try and be unique in the late night world. Here are a few:

1. His Opening Monologue.

So far, it seems as though Corden isn’t exactly embracing the typical joke-after-joke-after-joke routine that every late night host partakes in. Even Ferguson, who disguised his jokes very well in a fluid and zany way, told a dozen or so jokes every night. Instead, Corden has been concentrating on one issue, and going on a rant about it. He talked about how there were reports that California will be out of water in a year, and he also explained why the idea of selling draft beer at gas stations is a terrible thing. This isn’t a bad idea, but he hasn’t really been able to fully keep me engaged in his monologue yet. Maybe I’ve developed late night ADD, because while Corden delivers some funny jokes, the way he elaborates on the topic becomes dull fairly quickly.

2. His Interview.

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Corden seems very personable, so what’s better than having him interview celebrities without that bulky desk between him and his desk? I love this and just having him sitting right next to his guests on the same level allows him to engage in a more conversation-like interview somewhat like Ferguson (though Corden still reads off questions on his cards instead of ripping them up). In addition, Corden has all of the guests come down at the same time, which has been good and bad thus far. It’s good when the celebrities can get along with each other and still allow Corden to do his hosting duties. Having Tom Hanks and Mila Kunis sitting next to each other for the first show was great. They all laughed and everyone was into the conversation.

Unfortunately, it has backfired more times than it has worked. As he interviewed Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart at the same time, there were moments when the two guests were just cracking jokes and talking on their own, almost forgetting that Corden was there with them. In addition, Corden has been rolling out three guests at a time, something that (in my opinion) has not worked. With three guests, it’s not likely they’re all going to get along and too often does Corden have to talk to each one separately, leaving the other guests to show off a fake smile and twiddle their thumbs until its their turn. The idea is fine, but it’s going to need some tweaking to work.

3. The Band.

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The Late Late Show has a band! This is something Ferguson always mocked since he never had a band. In addition to the live band, Reggie Watts is the leader and plays as Corden’s sidekick… think of Watts as the Paul Shaffer to Letterman. While it’s great there is a live band to add more energy into the show, the comedy of Watts is much different than the comedy of Corden. Their dynamic has not panned out quite yet and I’m afraid it’s not going to work until one of them switches their style up. Watts provides a very strange, odd-ball type of dry humor while Corden is more mainstream, friendly humor. Because of the difference, you rarely see the two of them interact during the show, aside from Reggie Watts’ question to the guest. This was a risk that might not pay off.

4. Games

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We all know about all the games Jimmy Fallon plays on his show with his guests. Corden is attempting to follow suit with his own games with the guests, but seriously what can Corden do to top Catchphrase, flip cup, and the lip sync battle? So far, his games have fallen flat. Recently, he had his three guests (Tom Lennon, Matthew Perry, and Aubrey Plaza) guess the correct Google search results from a number of made up results. It was mildly funny but overall it didn’t work. His best game so far was with Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell. Both actors couldn’t hear each other and were reading off scripted answers-question cards, seeing if they would read a match. Some of the results were pretty funny, but I think what made it funnier than it should’ve was the actors, not the game.

In conclusion, James Corden should have a pretty loose leash on his run as Late Late Show host. He’s young, he’s energetic, and it’s really hard not to like him. He’ll still need to work out a bunch of things that aren’t working on his show, but it’s all a work in progress. For now, I’m excited to see how he grows as a host and I look forward to watching the Late Late Show for years to come.


Better Call Saul – “Pimento”

March 31, 2015

Season One, Episode Nine

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Grade: A-

Boy, if things haven’t been bad enough for poor Jimmy McGill, things just got a lot rougher for him. Already one of the strongest characters who we feel bad for every episode, the penultimate episode in season one dropped a bomb on everything that Jimmy has believed in since he was younger. His own brother, Chuck McGill, the prestigious lawyer and idol to Jimmy, doesn’t even respect his younger brother. Jimmy has been knocked around a number of times before, but this is the biggest blow in his life.

Let’s back things up a bit and concentrate on the events leading up to all of this. The McGill brothers are taking on Sandpiper for a multimillion dollar lawsuit that spans across several states, and for everything that they’ve already dug into, things look very promising for the McGill brothers. Then the lawyer-ing comes in and the Sandpiper lawyers begin to slow the process down by throwing boxes upon boxes of paperwork their way, something that Jimmy and Chuck must go through. Sure, they could do everything by themselves but like Chuck put it, two people can’t build a bridge. Jimmy realizes the uphill battle they have and agree with Chuck to bring the case to HHM.

Up until this point, it was Howard Hamlin who has been standing in Jimmy’s way of working with his brother in the law firm, but at the end of the episode we find out that it’s been Chuck’s doing all along that has been keeping Jimmy from landing a job. It’s certainly a trick that has paid off from excellent writing since the beginning of the season. Patrick Fabian has been playing Howard as a weasel, someone who seems to have a stick up his ass and who hates Jimmy for some reason. But as Chuck erupts at Jimmy, he explains to him that he’s not a real lawyer and he’ll always be a crook, and a crook cannot change. After working hard and devoting a large part of his life to achieving everything he has, Chuck couldn’t bear to see Jimmy with an office in the same firm after taking shortcuts. Does he have a point? I guess he does, but he shouldn’t have been dragging him along all this time. There was still honor left for Chuck if he would’ve told Jimmy how he felt long ago, but after everything Jimmy has done for the older brother he looked up to, this is inexcusable.

Meanwhile, Mike’s B-story shows us what kind of work he’s doing for the veterinarian. Everything that we see from Mike this episode reminds us of why he loved him so much on Breaking Bad. He provides a dog for Kaylee. His quiet demeanor pisses off one of the “bodyguards” until he shows everyone why he’s the real tough guy on the show. His job this episode was to be the muscle for a nervous guy who’s about to sell Nacho a lot of pills. Everything runs smoothly, which Mike anticipated and he gets a nice $1,500 payday for his work. While Mike’s story is a lot of fun to watch, his conversation with the man is what makes it important. Mike explains to him that though he’s now a criminal, it’s up to him whether he’s a good or a bad guy. This is something that Jimmy has been going through with his life. After the stunts he pulled as Slippin’ Jimmy, he’s been trying to atone for his actions by remaining a good and loyal person. He could’ve taken the money from the Kettlemans, but he gave it all back. He could’ve allowed Tuco to kill the skateboarding idiots, but he talked him out of it. Unfortunately to Chuck, it doesn’t matter how many good things he does, he’ll always be Slippin’ Jimmy.

So how’s Jimmy going to respond to this? It sure doesn’t look like he’s going to be talking to Chuck anytime soon, and if anything he has another enemy to fuel his fire. The only person on his side is Kim. It’s a lonely road ahead for Jimmy, but if he takes the deal then he’ll at least have a bunch of money to spend figuring out if he still wants to pursue this whole lawyer thing. Wouldn’t it be funny if he somehow joins the Sandpiper team just to spit in Chuck’s face?

better-call-saul-pimento


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