Category Archives: tv

Pretty Little Liars and ALL the Secrets!

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And damn do they have good clothes, too. …usually. I’m looking at you, Aria.

Over the last few months, I’ve been playing catch up on Pretty Little Liars, got through Season 5 just in time for the start of Season 6, and was able to watch live as we all found out the true identity of the Liar’s long-game tormentor, A. I actually watched this show live when it first started six years ago, but stopped before the first season ended. Why did I stop? Why did I start up again? What do I think about the latest but oddly not quite final plot twist? Let’s dive in. Expect spoilers.

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Diversity in Games (and Other Media)

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Nothing like a sinus infection & viral bronchitis combo to slow your week, topped off with busting up your phone! At I can say that I am on the mend; as for the phone, that remains to be seen.

Since the Daily Post doesn’t have this week’s photo challenge up yet, here’s a topic that crossed my mind again recently and does on occasion when I’m writing or designing, or just reading about games and media in general: diversity. I’ll be talking mostly about games here, but a lot of this applies to other media like movies, TV, comics, and so forth, so expect some crisscrossing of that line.

It’s no big secret or shock that most game protagonists are the default white male. Most designers are white men, and historically their target demographic has been white males. It still baffles me that some people react some strongly against this “status quo” being changed or challenged, but that’s a different topic altogether. I understand why this is the default–the old adage of “write what you know” is a powerful and natural direction to take when writing. It’s easiest to imagine yourself as the protagonist of a story. If you were to take a look at all my writing and roleplaying characters over the years, you’d find that most of them were female, white, with red or brown hair. This, and likewise the default white casts or male white protagonists of TV shows, movies and games did not stick out to me as odd for a long time.  Read the rest of this entry

“Men at Work”: You’re Doing it Wrong

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Last night, Brandon and I happened to catch an episode of the new TBS sitcom called “Men at Work.” You may recognize the name from the absolutely relentness plugging that’s been going on for the show. It wasn’t a show we

Shocking news: “Guy shows can be just as crass, penis-obsessed and vacuous as all those gal shows that started turning up last fall. More, even.” The shock is that someone said this with a straight face.

sought out, but it came on after a repeat of The Office, so we  sat through it.

And ugh. This piece of crap cannot be cancelled fast enough. Cliched writing, characters, stock jokes, and plots. Ripping off better shows. The only reason anyone is saying this is the guy’s version of Sex and the City HAS to be because that’s something the marketing for this show came up with, because it’s nothing like that at all, apart from having four male characters in one show. Read the rest of this entry

Thursday Tropes: After the End

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I love a good post-apocalyptic story. Hell, I even enjoy ones that aren’t that good, because just the hint of one will perk my ears. And given the proclivity of this kind of setting lately, it’s safe to say I’m not the only one. Just

It’s Ellen Page in the post-apocalyptic future! (Actually, the resemblance is a coincidence, but I’m sure she’d have something quirky to say if it were her.)

yesterday I came across some trailers for an upcoming game, The Last of Uswhere a version of the Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, the fungus that can create a zombie ant, has jumped to humans and created zombies and lead to the collapse of civilization as we know it. I know so very little about the gameplay, the plot, anything, but I know it looks gorgeous and I’m suddenly we’ve got a PS3 and I’ll be able to play it! I’ve also written before about another such setting I ate up (a coincidentally interesting choice of words on my part) when I wrote about Feed by Mira Grant, which features fantastic world-building. The third book and final book in that trilogy, Blackout, releases later this month and I can’t wait to read it.

When reading up on TLOU the other day, a few things occured me. One, this was a perfect topic for my next Thursday Tropes post! Two, I clearly have an itch to write my own post-apocalyptic story, so I should work on that at some point. And three, why are we obsessed with post-apocalyptic stories? I’ve come to at least one conclusion: it’s real-life fanfiction crossed with cautionary tale. Read the rest of this entry

Thursday Tropes: The College Application Process

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Everything you’ve seen on TV about getting into college in the US is pretty much completely and utterly FALSE. In a variety of ways, so let’s break this down. The latest offender is, of course, Glee. But I promise I’ll pick on Gossip Girl, too, this time!

The Long and Fairly Specific Process

In the US, there’s a pretty standard system for how the college application process works. You spend the latter portion of your junior year researching and checking out schools, as well as the following summer and some of the fall of your senior year. Most applications must be submitted by January 1st (with some early admission deadlines around early to mid-November). Some school with rolling admission may take applications into March. You will hear back on whether or not you’ve been accepted between April 1st and April 15th, and you are expected to respond by May 1st as to whether or not you will be enrolling at the places you have been accepted. Read the rest of this entry

Thursday Tropes: The Love Triangle

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The Love Triangle.  Because we all know that love and relationships are only complicated when a potential second suitor comes along, and apart from that, it’s all rainbows and good times and everyone gets along.

Waaaait a second.

Why hook up with the still living when you can have the undead popsicle, amirite?

My beef with the love triangle is how overused it’s become. Now, do love triangles happen in real life? Of course they do. And do they keep fiction interesting? They certainly can. But it’s become a staple, it often seems, rather than a useful tool among many others in the writer’s toolbox. I get the impression that a lot of them are added in because that’s what people are told will sell books (or other media), rather than it being in there because it helps the story and develops naturally.

Of recent love triangle fame is, of course, the Twilight series. Which is funny since this is a triangle that isn’t a triangle. Yes, I read them, and yes, I’ve seen the movies. Yes, I think it’s awful. It’s like a train wreck, I can’t look away! Plus the unintentional hilarity is fantastic. But I digress. This now hugely famous love triangle isn’t one because at really no point does Bella ever seriously consider Jacob. Briefly in New Moon, when it looks like Edward’s gone forever, but hot damn, she literally jumps on a plane to fly halfway across the world the second she learns that’s still an option! Jacob, buddy, that should’ve been your first enormous clue that she was just not that into you.

But thanks to this series, love triangles have taken on new life as a given in YA, it feels like, becoming cliche, boring, and overused in the process. Read the rest of this entry

Thursday Tropes: Pretty Hurt

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Part of my new attempt at a schedule, I’m going to aim to talk about a TV trope on Thursdays. I say “TV” because it’s largely inspired by the website TV Tropes, but these might come from books, movie, TV, games, any media or entertainment for mass consumption there is, really. Plus, Thursday Tropes has some nice alliteration to it.

I know, I know, today’s Friday, deal with it. I’m just getting this thing started! (Glee and The Killing spoilers ahead.)

Also, check out the new look! What do you think? The background is from Cutest Blog on the Block.

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