New Girl & the Importance of Individuality

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New Girl promo poster. 

This was the first time having a four day weekend in my professional career. My prior job I had to work on Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving. Besides playing the Sims 3, I have been watching a lot of New Girl. New Girl is one of the most binge worthy sitcoms I have ever watched. One crucial takeaway from watching the show is the importance of individuality.

Jess, played by Zooey Deschanel, is the quirky lead of the show. She moves in with three male roommates after she discovers her boyfriend cheating on her. Nick, Schmidt and Winston give Jess realistic advice while Jess allows the men to feel more comfortable with who they are as people. Plus Jess and Nick have this “will they or won’t they” relationship and I want to see them get together!

Jess’s personality may seem over the top, but I appreciate how she’s always herself. Her male roommates will tease her constantly over it, but Jess hasn’t ever backed down or been less of herself. As much as I pride myself on being comfortable with who I am, I have my moments. For example, I was working at my new job and I was telling me team how much I love Harry Potter. Let’s face it: it was a fangirl rant of how much I love Harry Potter in 30 seconds. When I thought back to this moment, I felt regret. Regret because I don’t want my new coworkers to think I’m weird. However, I don’t want to be someone I’m not and obsessively loving Harry Potter is an aspect of my personality.

In these last five years, I have grown immensely as a person. Yes, I have become more confident in myself, but the insecurity is there. I wish I could eliminate it, but I’m not sure if I can. Watching New Girl allowed me to realize how I’m not alone. We all have a component of ourselves that’s a little “weird” and we shouldn’t feel ashamed. I would highly recommend watching New Girl as it’s made me feel better about myself during this holiday season.

My Youtube Subscriptions

When I was in middle school, me and my friends would create vlogs about silly things. It was a way we could get creative and manage our own page. I don’t actively add videos to Youtube anymore, but I have a few favorite “vloggers” I’m subscribed to. I wanted to list a couple of my favorite vloggers and why I enjoy their content.

Yoga with Adriene

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I’m extremely inflexible. My hip flexors are tight and it’s a struggle for me to touch my toes while standing. That’s why I subscribe to Yoga with Adriene. The yoga videos are free and there’s a variety of different videos. Some of her videos are catered to specific populations and no matter which video I choose, I always feel great after. Sometimes after a long day at work, I don’t want to go run on a treadmill, so I find doing a couple of her videos mellows me out.

Cameron Chaney

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Cameron specializes in “all things spooky”. He’s a horror author who often vlogs about book reviews of various horror books. Cameron provides “trigger warnings” in his book reviews which I really appreciate. A couple of the books he reviewed had intense rape scenes. I actively avoid reading about sexual assault in books for personal reasons. To see Cameron being sensitive to his audience makes me enjoy his content even more.

Molly McIsaac

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Molly McIsaac is the best witch queen on the internet. I started following Molly after watching the reality show on Syfy titled FangasmMolly speaks her mind and she’s passionate about body positivity, thrifting and social justice. Her videos recently have been pumpkin related shopping hauls, but she also vlogs about gaming, thrifting and more. I have yet to watch her #100babychallenge on Sims 4, but knowing Molly, I bet it will keep me entertained.

Super Space Chick

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Another Fangasm alum, Kristin is a booktuber. Many of the book series I have read came from her channel. I will say our book interests don’t always align, but it’s pushed me out of my comfort zone in what I read. Kristin loves young adult fantasy, contemporary and manga. Her videos are the perfect length and her channel is bright colored and peppy. I will continue to watch all of her book videos because they inspire me to keep reading all day every day.

Good Luck High Five

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Good Luck High Five is a Magic: the Gathering video channel and both Megan and Maria offer great tips on playing the game. As someone who has had negative experiences with the game, it helps that this channel is run by female gamers. My only negative with this channel is the videos can run long and my interest starts to wane. However, I usually play their videos while I do chores which helps pass the time.

Youtube is a great platform that’s allowed many to thrive making videos. All of these vloggers have made a positive impact in my watching experience and I can’t recommend them enough.

Prodigal Son is Fall TV’s Thrilling Serial Killer Drama.

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Prodigal Son promo poster. 

Promoting on Facebook is one of the best ways to market a blog or a TV show. I had seen ads about Prodigal Son almost every day as I scrolled through my Facebook feed. Serial killer TV shows / documentaries / podcasts are my jam as I’m a lifelong fan of Criminal Minds. Eventually, I caved into the ads around me and watched the first episode of Prodigal Son through Fox. Of course this is right up my alley and now I’m curious to see how the show plays out this season. It’s also available to watch on Hulu which I prefer versus watching on Fox’s website.

Prodigal Son follows Malcolm Bright (played by Tom Payne), a gifted FBI profiler. He’s fired after punching a police officer, but soon recruited by NYPD lieutenant, Gil Arroyo (played by Lou Diamond Phillips). Both Gil and Malcolm are called to investigate a series of grisly murders. These murders are eerily familiar as they are identical to the killings committed by Malcolm’s imprisoned father, Martin Whitly (played by Michael Sheen). Malcolm is forced to visit his father in prison to get his expertise as to who committed these murders. Their communication doesn’t stop and in fact triggers PTSD memories in Malcolm from the time his father is caught by the NYPD when he was a young boy. There’s something amiss within Malcolm’s memories which includes a woman in the box that no one seems to know about.

Michael Sheen can do no wrong in his acting range. He’s creepy in his positive demeanor and erratic bursts of anger when his son doesn’t communicate with him. Bellamy Young appears as Malcolm’s mother. She plays the part of the innocent mother, but I believe she knows more than what she lets on. There’s Detective Dani Powell (played by Aurora Perrineau) who is the most sympathetic to Malcolm’s PTSD outbursts. It seems the show is trying to build a romantic relationship between the two, which I hope doesn’t happen because Malcolm needs therapy, not romance.

The one downside with this show is that it’s premiering on Fox. Fox cancels everything, so I’m not sure why I’m bothering to invest my time into this show. It’s too late now, but I’m hoping Fox has learned from their errors committed in the past with cancelling Firefly and Almost Human

Prodigal Son has set up a nice build up being only two episodes into the first season. I’m wondering whether there is a woman in the box which is what Malcolm seems to think or if it’s a delusion. Prodigal Son airs on Fox at Mondays on 9/8 c.

 

Demons Meet Law & Order in Lucifer

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Me and my brother loved watching Law & Order SVU when we were in middle school. Law & Order SVU is the show I watch when doing chores or I want to have a distraction from a tough day. Lucifer is a Law & Order inspired show with demons thrown into the mix.

Lucifer is the literal king of hell played wonderfully by Tom Ellis. He’s the owner of a nightclub and finds amusement having sex with beautiful women and drinking copious amounts of booze. After one of Lucifer’s friends is shot and killed, he meets Chloe Decker, a LA homicide detective who’s assigned to this case. Chloe, played by Lauren German, is unique because she’s immune to Lucifer’s gifts. His “gifts” includes being able to persuade people to reveal their deepest darkest secrets. Chloe uses this to her advantage to solve crimes throughout Los Angeles.

Each season of Lucifer has a larger subplot intertwined throughout the season. The first season involves Lucifer getting shot by Chloe and he starts to bleed. Lucifer is immortal, so why is he bleeding from a simple gunshot wound?. Meanwhile Chloe is trying to build a case surrounding a supposed corrupt cop. The plot twists in the first season were shocking.

Lucifer is a favorite show of mine because of the characters. Lucifer can be an asshole, but he also has good intentions despite being the retired ruler of hell. Chloe is sassy to Lucifer while also using her cunning investigative techniques to seek the truth. I cannot forget to mention Trixie, Chloe’s cute daughter. Trixie adores Lucifer which is hilarious since Lucifer hates kids. His apparent hate for children doesn’t stop Trixie from giving him hugs throughout the season.

I wanted to give a special shout out to the fans who utilized the internet to save the show. Lucifer originally premiered on Fox until it was cancelled. Fans were irritated and created a petition to save the show. Netflix realizing they could make money off of Lucifer fans, swooped into renew the show at the last minute. I wish I was apart of this legion of fans, but I only discovered Lucifer a week ago.

Lucifer is a fabulous show featuring demon drama in downtown LA. I finished season one a couple days ago and I plan on watching season two either today or tomorrow. I’m trying to slowly get through the show as I don’t want to wait for new episodes.

If you’re a fan of Lucifer, let’s talk about the show in the comments!

 

Hot Date Realistically Chronicles Sex, Dating and Marriage.

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I have been stuck in a TV watching rut. I tried watching both Castle Rock and Homeland this year and I couldn’t get into these shows. Whenever I watch a show I can’t get into, it puts me in a funk. Thanks to Hot Date, I found an amusing show filled with sketches that realistically depict sex, dating and marriage.

Originally, I discovered Emily and Brian after listening to Not Another DnD Podcast. I don’t normally listen to DnD podcasts because I find if I “zone out” a little bit, I’m lost in the DnD story. However, Not Another DnD Podcast, is hilarious and I have no trouble listening to the voice actors for a two hour episode. At the end of each episode, the hosts usually plug their current books or other projects they have been working on. This is where I discovered Hot Date. 

Hot Date centers around Emily and Brian’s relationship and how it evolves through social interaction and taking on responsibilities. Each episode is roughly twenty minutes long with numerous sketches occurring in between Emily and Brian’s bits. One of my favorite sketches is where Emily and Brian feel they need to “spice up their relationship”. They visit a sex store where they purchase a sex swing. Things go awry when they don’t read the instructions and get stuck in the sex swing. This sketch sticks with me because I feel there is a stereotype for couples in long term relationships to try and “spice up their relationship.” I am perfectly content with my relationship, but I feel this insecurity every now and then.

Regardless if you’re single, in a relationship or married, I think anyone could find this show entertaining. I like that it’s not a huge commitment to watch the show as there are only ten episodes in season #1. Before watching Hot Date, I would recommend listening to Not Another DnD podcast because then you can get an idea on Emily and Brian’s humor to see if Hot Date would be for you. As far as what to watch next. . . I’m thinking about re-watching Doctor Who or I heard Good Omens was good. I’m glad to be out of my TV watching rut.

 

Star Wars Canon Timeline

The Star Wars universe encompasses so many various media including the movies, TV series, books, comics and board games. There’s so much to devour that if you stick with the movies, you miss out on other stories. Kristin at Super Space Chick made a pact to try and read more “Star Wars Canon” in between the release of episodes VIII & episode IV. I made a decision that I wanted to read more “Star Wars Canon”. I also want to take another stab at watching Clone Wars because even though I have tried to watch it twice without continuing on, I have heard too many good things about the show to completely abandon it. I plan on posting my Star Wars Canon Project which I did adapt from Kristin’s list, so credit goes to her for putting it all together.

The Star Wars Expanded Universe has had various changes as to whether or not the books were “canon” or not. When something is “canon” it means it’s existing in the same universe. When Disney acquired LucasFilm, they set out to make a standard as to which Star Wars books would be considered “canon”. On April 25th 2014, the Expanded Universe was retconned, meaning all the books published before this date weren’t technically considered canon. These books still were written, but technically are considered almost fan-fiction versus actually occurring in the Star Wars universe. This may have angered fans who fell in love with the books only for them to not be considered in the main Star Wars saga.

One summer, I had walked to a library near by my house. I spotted sitting on a shelf Maul Lockdown by Joe Schreiber. Darth Maul is easily one of the most underused characters in the Star Wars saga. I enjoyed Maul Lockdown as it adds to his story that we don’t get to see in the Phantom Menace. However, this book was released before April 25th, so therefore it’s not strictly canon.

The question becomes. . . what is considered canon in the Star Wars Universe? The movies are always going to be number one. Followed by both Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels. The books help provide fans with much needed character development taking place between the movies. Comics also help to fill that void.

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In the above picture, I crossed off in blue what I have read or watched already. The list is about five pages on it’s own including every TV episode, movie, comic, book that’s been created. I’m also going to include a link to Kristin’s video where she gives even more resources for fans to utilize when reading the extended universe.

Ultimately, my goal is to read as much as I can before the end of the year. That may only be one book or it can be finally finishing Clone Wars. I like this organized guide because it feels like a check list and I’m a list making person. In Kristin’s above video, she links to her original google doc which I then used to make it my own. Episode IX comes out this year and reading more Star Wars will get me excited for December.

 

Shrill is Sassy and Body Positive

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Aidy Bryant.. I love her. 

I have a problem: I tend to start watching 5 TV shows at once. For example, I’m watching Queer Eye season #3, Castle Rock and The Good Place simultaneously. When I was at C2E2 with my friend, she couldn’t stop raving about Shrill and how honest it was at portraying a young woman going through her professional career. Specifically how this young, plus size woman, is facing obstacles in her personal and professional life based on her weight. It was heartbreaking at times to see how plus size women are treated today, but it’s necessary to demonstrate how we need to let plus size women exist without judgement.

Shrill stars Aidy Bryant, who recently starred alongside Amy Schumer in I Feel Pretty. Aidy plays Annie Easton, a plus sized woman working in Portland. She’s been having on / off sex with Ryan who refuses to have her meet his friends and sneaks her out the back door every time she comes over. Annie also receives off handed remarks from her boss at work and her mom about trying to lose weight. As she has unprotected sex with Ryan, she gets pregnant when she discovers that Plan B doesn’t work as well because of her weight.

Does Plan B not work as well on woman who weigh over 175 lbs.? I did research and many gynecologists say that in “woman who weigh over 175 lbs.” the morning after pill has been more likely to fail. I’m shocked because I never knew weight played a role in how the medication worked. There is even research saying some morning after pills won’t work on women who weigh more than 150 lbs. which by the way, on some days I do weight around 150 lbs. Would the pharmacologist let me know this information if I needed to purchase this pill? Probably not.

Annie decides to get an abortion which is shown to some degree on the show. I’m pro choice which means I’m for a woman’s right to choose what she wants to do with the fetus. I’m not going to debate anyone on this because my opinion won’t change. I’m glad we are representing this on TV because many woman have abortions and it’s still treated as a shameful act when it shouldn’t be the case.

Annie goes through many other experiences and slowly learns to not give a fuck. The episodes where Annie stands up for herself are my favorite because I was rooting for her. This show is based off Lindy West’s book Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman which is a book all about fat representation and obstacles Lindy faced in her career due to her weight. This series is full of body confidence and features a fat woman living her truest life.

I’m someone who has thin privilege. Thin privilege is the idea that I’m thin enough in society to pass meaning I’m not approached or mocked for my weight. Except one time I was at the gynecologist and she made a comment about how I had been gaining weight. The point is that I’m not the target audience of Shrill. However, Shrill is a great show highlighting women of all different sizes, races and backgrounds. The only way these types of shows keep being made is if they are profitable. So let’s keep consuming media starring other body types to show Hollywood that beauty is found at every size.