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Film

Crimson Peak (2015)

A luxurious but straightforward gothic romance for the cinema.

Television

Sailor Moon, “Shadow of Evil: the Trio's Last Chance”

WAIT, WHAT? The Amazon Trio learn that they aren’t, technically, people, sending Fish’s Eye into an identity crisis over whether or not he even has a soul. This is some dark stuff.

Sailor Moon, “Mirrors of Dreams: the Amazon's Last Stage”

And it gets darker… until all three are redeemed, despite their rampage of assault across Tokyo for the last few weeks. I really do love Fish’s Eye trying to negotiate his humanity, though.

Saturday Night Live, “Amy Schumer/The Weeknd”

I’ll be real: that Weeknd update bit was amazing.

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 23.1% (3/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Film

The Phantom of the Opera (2004)

“Man, this is the best Slayer video ever.”

The Raven (2012)

“How do you fuck up having Luke Evans shirtless in your movie?”

Television

Sailor Moon, “Juban Holiday: The Carefree Princess”

Sailor Moon does Roman Holiday.

Sailor Moon, “Destined Partners? Makoto's Innocence”

Fish’s Eye gets distracted by a beauty pageant and Makoto and Ami dance (like, complete with Dirty Dancing lift) at a dance known for generating couples.

Saturday Night Live, “Miley Cyrus”

Well, hey there, friends! I have missed this show, its cast, and its uneven quality. Cyrus does able work and interesting songs—although for the love of God, please stop appropriating dreads—and it’s a good way to ease back into the show.

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 23.1% (3/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

Sailor Moon, “Protect Mom's Dream: Double Moon's New Attack”

Hawk’s Eye’s predatory trait: going after older women. I do like that we get to see how Chibiusa interacts with her grandmother.

Sailor Moon, “Catch Pegasus: The Amazon's Trap”

Naru, having learned after her first disastrous relationship, rejects Tiger’s Eye’s story of being terminally ill.

Sailor Moon, “The Perfect Couple: Usagi and Mamoru's Love”

Okay, I like that Mamoru is getting more to do this season, because there’s more character comedy and less end of the world, but this means we get to look the fact that this twenty-two year old is dating a fifteen year old pretty hard in the face. After getting creeped out, however, we find Chibiusa in a Back to the Future subplot, as well as the victim of the week having the possibility of being the Commissioner Gordon to Sailor Moon’s Batman.

Sailor Moon, “Artemis Is Cheating? Enter the Mysterious Kitten”

Tiger’s Eye goes after a nun and we meet Diana, who is honestly great? Formal and polite but just as aggressive and weird as Chibiusa.

Sailor Moon, “Makoto's Friendship: The Girl Who Admired Pegasus”

The Twilight of the Sailor Moon universe is about a Pegasus and a mortal woman.

Sailor Moon, “Connecting Hearts: Chibi-Usa and Pegasus”

Focusing on the different dreams of women means that this season gets to show that women are people, too, even more than usual. I really like this because it features a teacher whose dream is to have a really easy, loving class, but whose reality is different, and that’s okay. Her dream motivates her to be a better teacher. Awww.

Sailor Moon, “Protect Mamoru: Ninja Usagi's Jealousy”

The girls destroy Mamoru’s apartment (HA HA HA) and then Usagi goes full ninja mode to make sure Mamoru and Rei don’t hook up while he stays with her.

Sailor Moon, “Forest of Illusion: A Beautiful Fairy's Invitation”

Fish’s Eye is deployed for the first time. I’m fascinated by Fish’s Eye—as I am with all queer sea monsters—and there’s plenty of room and evidence to read him as genderfluid to some degree. There’s never any “IT’S A MAN, BABY” reveals for his victims, even when he’s out of “drag”, and there’s a later episode where he chooses what gender to present as to his victim.

Sailor Moon, “Drive to the Heavens: The Dream Car Fueled with Love”

This is the point during my marathon that I fell asleep—DAMN YOU FLU!—but cars, yay?

Sailor Moon, “Aiming for the Top: the Pretty Swordswoman's Dilemma”

Chibiusa befriends a tiny samurai. I like this one, because it ends with Chibiusa and Usagi having a mother/daughter moment, which they don’t usually get.

Sailor Moon, “We Love Fashion: The Stylish Guardians”

Fish’s Eye straight up Yokos a fashion studio, breaking up a perfectly happy gay couple in the process. They recover and Usagi gets a (hideous) wedding dress out of the deal.

Sailor Moon, “Storm of Love: Minako's Grand Two-Timing Plan”

Minako running around trying to have two dates at once—BECAUSE SHE CAN HAVE IT ALL—is hilarious.

Sailor Moon, “The Secret Mansion: a Menu of Love for You”

Diana is hilarious in this episode.

Sailor Moon, “Believe in Pegasus: The Four Guardians' Super Transformation”

Oh, yeah, of course the only recurring gay character is also a pedophile. Although I do find it ironic that Hawk’s Eye and Tiger’s Eye give Fish’s Eye well-deserved shit when, not a few episodes ago, they picked up an eight year old. UGH.

Sailor Moon, “Shining Summer Days: Ami Under the Sea-Breeze”

Is it time for the annual beach episode again? I’m not crazy about Shingo’s crush on Ami, but since this is the last episode he ever appears in, WHATEVER. I do like that Fish’s Eye and Hawk’s Eye have just accompanied Tiger’s Eye to the beach. MAYBE THEY’RE FRIENDS?!

Sailor Moon, “Become a Prima: Usagi's Ballet”

Fish’s Eye! YOU COULD BE THEIR FRIEND IF YOU COULD FEEL HUMAN KINDNESS! But no. Fish’s Eye, who is a great ballerina because I guess fish are great at dancing, attempts to Yoko a local production of Giselle, but can’t. Also, there’s fat-shaming of Usagi, which is bullshit.

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 23.1% (3/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Fanfiction

Hannibal, Hannibal/Will, “There’s a Hole at the Bottom of the Sea” by longwhitecoats

Soft and beautiful and just sharp enough. Hannibal reads Will Dante.

Film

Ravenous (1999)

"AMERICA WAS THE WENDIGO THE WHOLE TIME!"

Television

Sailor Moon, “Believe in Love: Ami, the Kindhearted Guardian”

I would watch an entire series about Haruka and Michiru, teen detectives.

Sailor Moon, “Shadow of Destruction: the Messiah of Silence Awakens”

Ah, the old Twinrova maneuver… a few years before that game came out… huh.

Sailor Moon, “ The Coming Terror of Darkness: Struggle of the Eight Guardians”

Oh, Pluto.

Sailor Moon, “The Shining Shooting Star: Saturn and the Messiah”

That shot of Moon returning from the orb, her eyes just dead? Oh, man. Shivers.

Sailor Moon, “A New Life: Parting of the Stars of Destiny”

THIS IS SO UNNECESSARY. Also: nobody is asking enough questions about that baby.

Sailor Moon, “A Guardian’s Realization: Strength Lies Within a Pure Heart”

And Chibi-usa gets to stay! I do love how all the Guardians get Chibi-usa super personal and meaningful gifts, while Mamoru gets her… a pressed rose.

Sailor Moon, “Meeting of Destiny: The Night Pegasus Dances”

…does Fish Eye wear a puffy blue jumpsuit? And Tiger’s Eye, he is honestly wearing a pair of razor blades as earrings? Holy cow, we’ve found the worst dressed people in a nineties shoujo anime.

Saturday Night Live, “Art Garfunkel/Stephen Bishop”

Art Garfunkel’s eyes lack empathy.

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 23.1% (3/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

Sailor Moon, “A Bewitching Flower That Steals Hearts: Tellu, the Third Witch”

Kaolinite’s life just sucks, doesn’t it?

Saturday Night Live, “O.J. Simpson/Ashford and Simpson”

Yes, as a child of the nineties, it is weird to see Simpson host Saturday Night Live. But I’m also reminded of how comedically dark the seventies were—Franken and Davis do a bit where the joke is that a terminally ill Franken is telling terrible jokes, made darker by a tearful Davis hovering over him—and that’s always unsettling. Not unsettling: the stink eye Newman throws to the camera when Simpson mistakenly calls her “Jane” during Weekend Update. She’s such a genius.

Star Trek: The Next Generation, “Galaxy’s Child”

FUCK I missed this show. Princess Deanna! Riker being a little shit! Beverly’s eternal poise! Picard’s authority!

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Film

The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl (2005)

“God, I played a shitty build of Doom like this in the nineties.”

Music

Halsey, Badlands

Consistently haunting and spare. “New Americana” is rightfully a single, but “Gasoline” and “Young God” are my stand-outs.

Melanie Martinez, Crybaby

Aggressive lolita darkness over spare beats and sung with a phenomenal voice. I love Martinez’s aesthetic—it makes me remember running around with alternative kids in the early aughts—and I would love to see her tackle gender moreso than she already does. “Pity Party” is great, of course, but so are “Dollhouse” and “Carousel.”

Television

Sailor Moon, “Battle Inside the Demonic Space: The Sailor Guardians’ Gamble”

“I should have never been born!” Hotaru, take it down a notch, sweetheart. You are dark.

Sailor Moon, “The Messiah of Silence Awakens? Stars of Destiny”

I love that this is a show where you can have silly hijinks but also seriously talk about the morality of killing one person to save the world.

Sailor Moon, “An Invasion from Another Dimension: Mystery of Mugen Academy”

Someone pokes the Guardians on their butts; they immediately blame Mako. (Also, Makoto has this bitty crush on Ami that’s really, really cute.) And farewell, Mimete!

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

Hannibal, Season 2

ENDLESS SCREAMING. Seriously, this show is so good that I feel drunk on it.

Hannibal, Season 3a

MORE ENDLESS SCREAMING. Weirder visuals (yeah, that’s possible), and a bizarre (not) resolution to Will and Hannibal’s perfectly fucked up relationship. Delicious. Also, Laurence Fishburne is so good in this show.

Hannibal, “The Great Red Dragon”

We’ve skipped ahead three years, and it is somehow… even more the eighties than usual (even though it’s set ~nowish~). DELIGHTFUL. Aw, look at Will, king of Wolf Trap, where people bring him animals and he fixes things and he has a wife and a kid, drawn back into this horrible, horrible life. I do appreciate that Hannibal looks a little unsettled to see Will.

Sailor Moon, “Higher and Stronger: A Cheer from Usagi”

“You’re not going to give him your letter? BUT WE JUST BROKE IN HERE SPECIFICALLY FOR THAT!”

Project Progress

Parks and Recreation: 0% (0/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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 No entry this week. I'm frantically trying to catch with Hannibal, and will reserve my thoughts for when I finish the second season. And I will eventually catch up on Sailor Moon.
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Television

30 Rock, Season 6 and Season 7

Okay, I’m fudging here because I finished it this morning, but I’m not writing out an episode thing for everything. It’s been such a fun and funny ride and I’ve really enjoyed it. Now, to the thinkpieces about race in 30 Rock and onto Parks and Recreation!

Sailor Moon, “Crazy for Celebrities! Mimete in Doubt”

I do really like that Minako didn’t win the contest at all.

Sailor Moon, “Shadow of Silence: The Pale Glimmer of a Firefly”

Oh my God, Setsuna, don’t you have another outfit?

Saturday Night Live, “Madeline Kahn/Taj Mahal”

Very on point this week—save for a stupendously cruel sketch about a blind black man getting screwed out of an affirmative action scholarship to law school because I guess Mike O’Donoghue thought affirmative action was dumb. (What a fascinatingly and repulsively cruel man.) Aykroyd’s glorious, frosty weirdness is on full display, and especially sharp in the presence of Jane Curtin, who is a Secret Weird.

Project Progress
30 Rock: 100% (7/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 20% (8/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

30 Rock, “The Natural Order”

Colleen is a treasure every time she shows up to ruin people’s lives: here we find her finally affirming Jack while also basically revealing that his father is not who he thinks it is.

30 Rock, “Mamma Mia”

Liz nerding out over getting to Mamma Mia Jack is amazing.

30 Rock, “Kidney Now!”

A solid finale.

30 Rock, Season 4

How did I watch an entire season of 30 Rock in a week? I’m entering it into this log as one thing, because I don’t want to do episode by episode for 22 episodes. But it’s really found its groove, as people warned me. There’s such a great balance between Liz and Jack, the nominal cool heads (who are still bonkers), and everybody else. Pete gets more to do this season about how tragic his life is. Tracy gets a good arc in his desire to have a daughter. I can’t break it down, because marathoning it means that it all blurs softly into a wall of solid jokes, endearing characters, and sometimes absurdist comedy. (“Oh, Pete, that’s later. Maybe we’ll be dead by then.”) And Cheyenne Jackson is so great as the new cast member! I love you, 30 Rock. (Although you have very clear representational issues.)

30 Rock, “The Fabian Strategy”

I kind of really love how much Jack adores Avery, because she’s just like him and the show plays that to the hilt. And I adore Jenna as an actually great producer. It’s nice to see her be good at something.

Sailor Moon, “Who is the True Messiah? Chaos of Light and Darkness”

Sailor Moon, A House Filled With Evil Presence: The Beautiful Hotaru’s Secret”

Saturday Night Live, “Eric Idle/Neil Innes”

“Plain Talk” with Idle and Ackroyd? So great. You can so see why Idle really likes Ackroyd. Also, that Queen impersonator? Is Jeanette Charles, who did it professionally before she retired.

Saturday Night Live, “Shelley Duvall/Joan Armatrading”

Um, Duvall is a such a cutie. And as sexualized as the Video Vixens bit is, I do really love seeing the girls perform a boast song. (Plus, Newman performing? ALWAYS GREAT.)

Project Progress

30 Rock: 57.14% (4/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Film

Spy (2015)

Ugh. We could have had it all, but Spy mostly only parodies what it should be satirizing. Still, we do get to see a woman of size kicking considerable ass, and Jason Statham’s utterly bonkers Agent Rick Ford is a magnificent comedic creation.

Television

30 Rock, “Goodbye, my Friend”

Have I mentioned I love Liz being a terrible person and then trying not to be a terrible person? Because I do.

30 Rock, “The Funcooker”

Liz strikes fear into the heart of her workers.

30 Rock, “The Bubble”

I really love that the Dr. Baird storyline ends with him being so sheltered by his looks that he can’t function. (Although I have never found John Hamm that attractive? He’s deeply charismatic and certainly objectively symmetrical, but he doesn’t do it for me. Different strokes, etc.)

30 Rock, “Apollo, Apollo”

Jack getting so excited he throws up? Awwww, Jack. I do really love that, beneath his dapper and shark-like persona, he can get back in touch with his inner child.

30 Rock, “Cutbacks”

Every joke about Kenneth being secretly crazy old? Great. GREAT.

30 Rock, “Jackie Jormp-Jomp”

“Liz accidentally joins a Sex and the City Fight Club” is a great premise for an episode, even if we didn’t have Jenna faking and then not-faking her own death.

30 Rock, “The Ones”

This is such a great conclusion to the Elisa arc; we have to get rid of her, because Hayek has films to do, but Elisa and Jack have crazy chemistry! Also includes the infamous “Night Cheese” joke.

Sailor Moon, “The Death of Uranus and Neptune: The Talisman Appears”

Haruka and Michiru doing coupley stuff: always great. Haruka and Michiru owning a helicopter? YOU ARE SEVENTEEN CALM DOWN YOU’RE PRACTICALLY MAKING SAPPHISM A SUPERPOWER AT THIS POINT. But yeah, this episode is really heartwrenching, because it shows that they can’t sacrifice each other for the talismans; even Michiru, the one who has always been willing to take a life to save the world, can’t let Haruka die.

Sailor Moon, “The Holly Grail's Mystical Power: Moon’s Double Transformation”

Haruka and Michiru are restored to life—THANK GOD—by the arrival of Setsuna, while Usagi gets her third evolution.

Also, THE PROFESSOR IS HOTARU’S DAD? THIS IS SO WRONG THIS IS SO MESSED UP

Saturday Night Live, “Julian Bond/Tom Waits/Brick”

The show shows its hand in race, from managing to conclude a Black Perspectives sketch that starts off with interrogating racist IQ tests with pure colorism to just having Murray, Belushi, and Akyroyd playing black men. The only positive thing that can be said about that is that it’s not blackface, but also Brick was performing and could have subbed in?

Saturday Night Live, “Elliott Gould/The McGarrigle Sisters”

Gould is so good at hosting and more vaudevillian comedy. Whatta guy.

Project Progress

30 Rock: 28.8% (2/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

30 Rock, “The Succession”

The joy of Liz being her worst self while going corporate.

30 Rock, “Sandwich Day”

YES INTERNAL NBC MYTHOS. I find this so fascinating and mildly weird, the way this show concocts a strange alternate mythology to NBC in a way that the company let them do.

30 Rock, “Cooter”

Oh, hey, Matthew Broderick!

30 Rock, “Do-Over”

AND MEGAN MULLALLY, WHO IS THE GREATEST. I do really love that the show is now committing to Liz’s chaotic neutral stance.

30 Rock, “Believe in the Stars”

NO. NO. Blackface is never okay, even when you think you’re parodying it. I had hoped that they would never show it, just the reaction to Jenna, but oh boy. Oh boy. NOT COOL, GUYS.

30 Rock, “The One with the Cast of Night Court

This is an episode of 30 Rock Kyle Mooney has definitely seen.

30 Rock, “Gavin Volure”

Several good turns in this one, and so nice to see Steve Martin play bonkers.

30 Rock, “Reunion”

Liz remembering high school differently—amazing. Jack pretending to be someone she went to high school with and abandoning it immediately—AMAZING.

30 Rock, “Christmas Special

Jack and Colleen—ugh. So great and so messed up. I love that the stinger is just them playing a Christmas song.

30 Rock, “Señor Macho Solo”

I really, really like Jack and Elisa. We see this more later, but they’re a fun couple and we see why they like each other. And Elisa gets to be funny in a way that never invalidates who she is.

30 Rock, “Flu Shot”

Liz is a terrible person and I love that. (I could say this about most episodes.)

30 Rock, “Retreat to Move Forward”

Oh my God, Liz playing camper’s mom to Jack? And taking one for the team? We see Jack do a lot for Liz, but rarely vice versa, and it’s so great to see.

30 Rock, “Generalissimo”

Jack deciding the way to get into the good graces of Elisa’s grandmother is to completely rewrite her favorite soap opera? Fantastic grand gesture. I’m not thrilled about Alec Baldwin playing a Latino actor (this show and race, yeesh).

30 Rock, “St. Valentine’s Day”

THE WORST DATE EVER. The way it escalated was amazing. And seeing Jack destroy a priest with his sins? Fantastic. Plus, McFlurries and Elisa being angry that Jack is being such a dick that she won’t even get to show off her fancy underwear because there’s no way she’s sleeping with him tonight—great.

Mr. Robot, “Hello, My Friend”

Rami Malek is fantastic in an otherwise sloppy show.

Sailor Moon, “The Stolen Pure Heart: Usagi’s Crisis”

Holy crap, “Ai no Senshi” is a great song.

Sailor Moon, “The Arrival of a Small Pretty Guardian”

I do adore that, seeing Rei at a diner with a girl, everybody assumes that it’s a date. This is something I really like about Sailor Moon—Haruka and Michiru’s plotlines aren’t about them being queer without ever erasing that fact, and we do see what a pack of slightly sheltered teenage straight girls might think now that they actually know lesbians. They’re learning!

Sailor Moon, “Making New Friends: Chibi Moon’s Adventure”

This is where the professor starts getting just bonkers, which I really appreciate.

Sailor Moon, “I Want Power: Mako Lost in Doubt”

Mako doing anything = my favorite.

Sailor Moon, “The Bond of Destiny: Uranus’s Distant Past”

SO. GREAT. More on how Michiru and Haruka met (Michiru’s opening line: would you model for me? SMOOTH), more on how it’s actually Michiru who is convinced that people will need to be sacrificed to save the world, and more on how in love with Haruka Michiru is. I think Haruka pulls a lot of focus as Sailor Moon’s major queer character because she’s a soft butch goddess, but, like, Michiru’s gay too, y’all!

Sailor Moon, “Art Is an Explosion of Love: Chibi-Usa’s First Love”

For a second there, I thought Michiru was teaching their art class, because Haruka and Michiru are suddenly everywhere in the girls’ lives. Also, Chibi-Usa bites a grown woman because she is Usagi’s daughter.

Sailor Moon, “Usagi Dancing to the Waltz”

Usagi pukes and rallies and everybody wants to dance with Haruka.

Sailor Moon, “The Shocking Moment: Everyone’s Identities Revealed”

Saturday Night Live, “Broderick Crawford/The RCO Allstars”

A middling show, notable for Crawford rarely getting up from his armchair and Bill Murray appealing to the audience for support, thus sealing the eternal goodwill pact that has kept him in America’s heart these many decades.

Saturday Night Live, “Jack Burns/Santana”

Burns is… basically Timmy’s dad from The Fairly Odd-Parents, while seventies Santana plays the living hell out of his guitar in a fantastic all-white ensemble.

Project Progress

30 Rock: 28.8% (2/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Books

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

“Does this thing spark joy?” And now my closet has been reduced by half.

Film

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)

A FEMINIST ACTION 80S EXPLOITATION PUNCH TO THE NOGGIN THAT WILL MAKE YOU NEED TO GO SCREAM UNDER A DOCK FOR THREE HOURS JUST TO PROCESS HOW AMAZING IT WAS.

Television

30 Rock, “MILF Island”

Imitating a tasteless reality show’s format for an episode? Ugh, I love this show.

30 Rock, “Subway Hero”

Oh, Dennis. I do really love seeing Liz struggle with how easy being with Dennis is (see the cutaway to a white-clad Liz freezing to death peacefully) and how awful of a eprson it makes her. YOU GOT THIS, LIZ.

Sailor Moon, “I Want to Quit Being a Sailor Guardian: Minako’s Dilemma”

Minako used to be a star volleyball player? Love it.

Sailor Moon, “Usagi in Tears: a Glass Slipper for My Birthday”

Tuxedo Mask is surprisingly more effective this episode.

Saturday Night Live, “Louis C.K./Rihanna”

And we click off the lights for the summer with a solid episode.

Project Progress

30 Rock: 14.3% (1/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

30 Rock, “The Collection”

I’m having emotions over Jack giving up his absurd cookie jar collection? Goodness, this show is getting to me.

30 Rock, “Rosemary’s Baby”

Carrie Fisher cameo-ing on 30 Rock? GENIUS. 30 Rock (perhaps unintentionally?) touching on the problems of white feminism? Great.

Sailor Moon, “Let Moon Help With Your Love Problems”

I remember this episode from the English dub! I remember, specifically, the game, which Haruka naturally wins, because the show is as gaga for Haruka as I am.

Sailor Moon, “Coldhearted Uranus: Makoto in Danger”

Case in point: Makoto, like every girl on the show (even the ones who tell Makoto that she shouldn’t give up on boys), develops a massive crush on Haruka. But I really like that it’s ultimately because Makoto feels like, despite her best efforts, that she fails at femininity, and Haruka, being the soft butch goddess that she is, is a model for a different, more inclusive kind of gender presentation that still affirms Haruka’s identity as a woman. (I’m told that Haruka is bigender in the manga? I will investigate.) Aww.

Sailor Moon, “The Labyrinth of Water: Ami Targeted”

Ami wears great outfits and Michiru wears what appears to be a clown-inspired swim suit. Also, is it a rule now that everybody has to go for a motorcycle ride with Haruka? Is this why they’re all warm and fuzzy about Haruka?

Sailor Moon, “To Save Our Friends: Moon and Uranus Join Forces”

We get more background on Haruka and Michiru’s mission—the reason they stay away from the Guardians is that they’re convinced sacrifices will have to be made and they don’t want that decision muddled or put on the shoulders of young girls—and see Haruka being amazing. Also, Usagi turning into goo when Haruka holds her to keep her quiet from enemies and that being how she discovers that Uranus is probably Haruka? Genius.

Sailor Moon, “A Man’s Kindness: Yuichiro Heartbroken by Rei”

Haruka, so amazing that Yuichiro immediately thinks she and Rei are dating. (To be fair, Rei, for someone who was the first to tell Makoto not to give up on dudes, you are flirting with Haruka WAY HARD. SHE HAS A GIRLFRIEND, REI!) It’s always great to see Rei’s non-Sailor Guardian supernatural powers used.

Saturday Night Live, “Sissy Spacek/Richard Baskins”

You know, I had no idea she was Southern.

Saturday Night Live, “Reese Witherspoon/Florence + the Machine”

An admirable job, with the cutest Mother Day’s tribute monologue possible. (Kenan’s childhood clip being from a movie, because he’s never not been in show business? Actual lil baby Aidy spoofing “Genie in a Bottle?” Learning that the scarecrow we call Kyle Mooney used to be a husky kid? ADORABLE.)

Project Progress

30 Rock: 14.3% (1/7)
Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Television

Sailor Moon, “A Handsome Boy? Haruka Tenoh’s Secret”

Haruka swans into the Sailor Guardians’ lives and Usagi and Minako are immediately ENTHRALLED by her swagger. She’s basically everything I hoped for, with the added bonus of her immediately owning up to being in love with/hella committed to Michiru while also being like “well, we’re not exclusive…” to Michiru’s eye-rolling. Ughghghgh lived in couples. I am delighted.

Saturday Night Live, “Candice Bergen/Frank Zappa”

Well, Frank Zappa is a revelatory experience, from oozing televisions to Don Pardo guesting on a track to Belushi scatting on “Lagoon.” And Bergen is, as always, a graceful delight, from working elegantly with absurdity to watching in hysterics as Gilda Radner rescues a sketch she herself mucked up. Jane Curtin’s gag with her “boyfriend” is a treat and Killer Trees is fantastic. I might revisit this next Christmas and/or make my own Saturday Night Live Christmas special.

Saturday Night Live, “Dwayne Johnson/George Ezra”

Johnson is a consummate professional. Kate McKinnon and Cecily Strong knock it out of the park this week. And I’m happy to see Pete Davidson so clearly enthused about working with THE ROCK.

Project Progress

Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

eralkfang: (Default)

Film

This is Us (2013)

Liam is such a dad, Zayn is perfect (godspeed, kiddo), Harry is a weirdo, Niall is a sweetie, and Louis is an eighteenth century child thief.

Television

Sailor Moon S, “Premonition of the Apocalypse: the Mysterious New Guardians Appear”

I’m really excited for this, because I have no idea what happens after Sailor Moon R beyond the existence of the outer Guardians. Our villains and MacGuffins for the season are established and we’re off to the races. And we’re introduced, briefly, to Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune.

Sailor Moon S, “The Rod of Love Is Born: Usagi's New Transformation”

Wait, Mako lives alone? Like Batman? Mako is nice Batman.

Star Trek: The Next Generation, “First Contact”

A fantastic twist on a first contact story, especially because there’s not an easy answer and because the Federation respects their decision. Also: the doctor who has always wanted to have sex with an alien is marvelous.

Project Progress

Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

eralkfang: (Default)

Television

30 Rock, “The Baby Show”

Liz Lemon declaring to the world that she will figure out how to have it all? Yes. This. I keep getting excited that the show only gets better, because I like it so much.

30 Rock, “The Rural Juror”

Seeing Liz and Jenna’s friendship from both perspectives? Seeing Tracy and Jack bond over being well-traveled and wealthy? I am all delight.

30 Rock, “The Head and the Hair”

More on Kenneth, and Jack’s fondness of him and inability to comprehend him. Plus: the first non-appearance of Brian Williams. This is so fascinating to watch in the overall narrative of NBC.

Sailor Moon, “Saphir Dies! Wiseman's Trap”

Oh, man, the Spectre Sisters! Great to see them.

Sailor Moon, “Believing in Love and the Future: Usagi’s Decision”

Oh, God, Demande. I hate this subplot so much, especially because so much of Sailor Moon is about redeeming the villains, and redeeming the dude who just tried to mindrape you… uh huh. But he’s gone now. SUCK IT.

Sailor Moon, “The Final Battle Between Light and Dark: Pledge of Love for the Future”

And we conclude Sailor Moon R. Onto Sailor Moon S, of which I have no recollection!

Saturday Night Live, “Paul Simon/George Harrison”

Oh, little baby Paul Simon utterly besotted by the fact that he’s playing with AN ACTUAL BEATLE. Plus George Harrison’s bonkers music videos.

Project Progress

Sailor Moon: 15.4% (2/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

eralkfang: (Default)

Television

30 Rock, “Tracy Does Conan”

This is such a weird episode to watch, knowing what happens to Late Night with Conan O’Brien and how Conan and NBC are now not really talking. Especially because this is the first episode that really utilizes NBC’s other players in order to create its own identity as a network. Spooky.

Sailor Moon, “Shared Feelings: Usagi and Mamoru in Love Once Again”

OH, THANK GOD. This was such a useless subplot.

Sailor Moon, “Venus: Minako's Nurse Mayhem”

It’s nice to see Venus get some more characterization beyond having a shoddy memory. I know we got that backstory, but c’mon. I want personality. Which she shows here, by taking everything on herself whether or not she has the ability.

Sailor Moon, “Artemis' Adventure! The Evil Animal Kingdom”

Not as fun as Luna’s adventures in the animal kingdom, but fine.

Sailor Moon, “The Terrifying Illusion: Ami All Alone”

Sailor Moon, “The Dark Gate Is Completed? the Targeted Elementary School”

There is something truly horror movie zombies about how the elementary school is transformed.

Sailor Moon, “Journey to the Future: Battle in the Space-Time Corridor”

Oh, poor Sailor Pluto. She gets more to do later on, right?

Sailor Moon, “The Shocking Future: Demande's Dark Ambition”

First of all: adorable that Endymion told his daughter stories about how cool Sailor Moon was. Second of all: Usagi and Mamoru finally catch up with EVERYONE in realizing that they are Chibi-Usa’s parents and glowing bright red. The dress Usagi wears while kidnapped by Demande is fantastic, but Demande’s rapey vibes? Uh, gross, disgusting, vomit.

Sailor Moon, “Wiseman’s Evil Hand: Chibi-Usa Disappears”

“She’ll be fine if she stays in the palace!” Chibi-Usa immediately leaves the palace. COME ON!

Sailor Moon, “The Dark Queen: Birth of Black Lady”

Oh… okay. See, I thought that Wiseman might have secretly been Black Lady—his laugh at the end of the previous episode sounds a little more femme—from a timeline where Chibi-Usa went back in time and failed. I thought this because I did not think that they would have just rapid-aged Chibi-Usa (complete with a focus on her breasts) into her.

Saturday Night Live, “Chris Hemsworth/Zac Brown Band”

Hemsworth the Elder(…est?) proves to be a capably goofy straight man, although he lacks the comedic chops of, say, Chris Pratt. Kate McKinnon ascends to the Hillary Clinton impression and nails it, a tough task to tackle after Amy Poehler’s flawless Clinton impression. (Sorry, Bayer.) The black cast members finally get a sketch all to their own—an Empire parody—and the show slots in Hemsworth as a dorky white dude. BOOOOO. And they could have done something more pointed with the Iggy Azalea sketch, but they did no such thing. The Weekend Update team shows a modicum of chemistry and personality, with Jost covering a wonderful flub with aplomb. As ever, I will always watch Leslie Jones yell at Colin Jost.

But the superior sketch of the evening is “Captain Poulet,” which is specific, absurd, and well-crafted. A+ all around.

Project Progress

Sailor Moon: 7.7% (1/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

eralkfang: (Default)

Here’s a super-update to make up for the last three weeks.

Film

Wayne’s World (1992)

Warm, low-stakes, human, and honestly very sweet.

Wayne’s World 2 (1993)

And then money and a rushed script drain everything from it, although there are good character moments and lines. (“Take me now, Garth.” “Take you where? I’m low on gas and you need a jacket.”) BOO.

What We Do in the Shadows (2014)

Charmingly and unaggressively weird; I imagine this played well for me because I don’t watch many mockumentaries, so it still feels fresh.

Music

Marina and the Diamonds, Family Jewels

Simplistic but sumptuous brat pop, which I luckily love. “Shampain” is pure glory.

Television

Sailor Moon, “Rubeus the Heartless: The Tragic Sisters”

Chibi-Usa discovers that Usagi is Sailor Moon; the Spectre Sisters are finally freed. Through the power of sisterhood and friendship.

Sailor Moon, “A UFO Appears: The Sailor Guardians Abducted”

Ah, Esmeraude, my new favorite villain.

Sailor Moon, “Defeat Rubeus: The Battle in Space”

I remember hearing about those crosses getting edited out. Oh, late nineties Internet.

Sailor Moon, “The Mysterious New Guardian: Sailor Pluto Appears”

Chibi-Usa’s mom is so obviously Usagi, although people do appear to be hairblind in the world of Sailor Moon.

Sailor Moon, “Magic of Darkness: Esmeraude's Invasion”

While it’s usually played for cruel humor, I do appreciate it whenever Usagi’s appetite is brought up. She glories in it! And so does Esermaude, who is exactly the kind of petty I like in a villain. Delicious.

Saturday Night Live, “Blake Shelton”

An affable dude.

Saturday Night Live, “Elliott Gould/Leon Redbone, Harlan Collins & Joyce Everson”

“The Last Voyage of the Starship Enterprise” is one meta trip. Although I think Laraine would have given better Spock than Chevy.

Saturday Night Live, “Louise Lasser/Preservation Hall Jazz Band”

This is an incredibly uncomfortable watch.

Saturday Night Live, “Kris Kristofferson/Rita Coolidge”

“Police State” is actually a very interestingly black comedy sketch. And the fake credits are ahead of their time—I wonder how many people caught the glory of “SHEP GREMLIN”?

Saturday Night Live, “Lily Tomlin/James Taylor”

“We Asked Judith Beasley” is a lot of fun, especially anchored by one of Dan Ackroyd’s bonkers salesmen.

Saturday Night Live, “Norman Lear/Boz Scaggs”

An episode with the bare minimum of Chevy Chase? I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, where Jane Curtin is the Weekend Update anchor and nothing hurts…

Saturday Night Live, “SNL40”

Enough nostalgia and remarkably gorgeously edited montages to choke a horse, and just a little bit of that weird, strange Saturday Night Live magic. It’s best expressed through a Weekend Update segment that features Tina, Amy, and Jane (!!!) sharing the desk while funny ladies Emma Stone and Melissa McCarthy do Radner and Farley. (As well as the latest chapter in the Stefon saga, where we discover that Seth is an alcoholic and they have two kids now. IT’S THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING.) Or in the digital short, which gently ribs everyone for breaking but also remembers that it’s a reminder of how much they love each other. Awww.

Project Progress
Sailor Moon: 7.7% (1/13)
Saturday Night Live: 17.5% (7/40)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

eralkfang: (Default)

Music

Kate Bush, Director’s Cut

Notable tracks: “Deeper Understanding” and “Flower of the Mountain.”

Kate Bush, Fifty Words for Snow

The title track is literally fifty words Bush invented for snow. Genius. And with that, I’ve completed her discography. Huzzah!

Television

Sailor Moon, “For Friendship: Ami vs. Bertheir”

Bertheir is wooed to the side of good by the idea of sisters actually caring for each other in meaningful ways; she’s literally saved by Koan, who, without any of her superpowers anymore, still tries to save her and succeeds. Ughghghg friendship.

Saturday Night Live, “Desi Arnaz/Desi Arnaz, Jr”

How weird must it be to be interacting with someone playing your dead wife (or in Jr’s case, dead mother)? Gary Weis’ adorable, humanistic short films continue to be amazing. “The Bisexual Minute” is a good choice, although I do wish the humor came more from the wife’s description of how much she hated her home life and less from “queer ladies! existing!”. I am starting to be concerned about my crush on young Dan Ackroyd.

Saturday Night Live, “Jill Clayburgh/Leon Redbone, The Singing Idlers”

The more backstage meta the better, although I remain deeply unimpressed with Chevy Chase and his sloppy comedy. “Great Moments in Herstory” is incredibly underwhelming and racist. Clayburgh is sweet and game, which is all I ask from hosts. And Jane Curtin looks really, really, really cute as Betty Grable. Awww.

Saturday Night Live, “Anthony Perkins/Betty Carter”

“In some countries, it comes in like a lion and out like a different lion!” It’s the same joke every time, but I do like Belushi’s weather man.

Saturday Night Live, “Ron Nessen/Patti Smith”

It’s the seventies all over, as the Press Secretary hosts and the musical guest does punk rock. And Gerald Ford approves of Saturday Night Live, in an attempt to get ahead of it. “Super Bass-O-Matic '76” is fantastic. “Autumn Fizz” is funny because the idea of carbonated douche is hysterical. “Supreme Court Spot Check” is a fantastic, if slightly messy, sketch, because it makes its political point very cogently. (It should have ended in the awkward silence after Curtin’s character wonders why there’s no women on the Supreme Court, if they’re going to police her sex life.) Seeing a very young Bill Crystal is intriguing, although I’m not sure where his performance truly lies.

Also, spotting Mike O’Donoghue and his thousand light year stare in a sketch is a new, terrifying game I play with myself.

Saturday Night Live, “Raquel Welch/Phoebe Snow, John Sebastian”

Oh, poor Raquel Welch. It must be such an odd thing to try and negotiate your status as a sex symbol when that’s not what you set out to do. And then she turns up here and her trying to get her top off is a running gag, to the point that she makes a remark about tastelessness in her monologue. “The Decabet” is both an interesting joke and sign of the times (METRICS ARE COMING, Y’ALL!). And the running gag about the Beatles is born here, as baby Lorne offers them a tiny check to appear on their show.

Scred and Ploobis, in their penultimate episode, deal with puppet body horror (if they don’t have lower halves, Welch asks, how can they experience sexual attraction?) and lock themselves away in a trunk with the other Saturday Night Live Muppets. Dark stuff.

Saturday Night Live, “Madeline Kahn/Carly Simon”

“Wilderness Comedian”: somewhere, a young Will Forte has a dream about the Falconer. “Slumber Party” is an amazing sketch that uses its female cast perfectly; the humor is more of the slice of life variety, rather than specific jokes. And I always need Radner’s confused kiddos and Newman’s bratty girls in my life. “" Feel Pretty" is inspired silliness, as is “Final Days.” Kahn is an amazing host.

Saturday Night Live, “Dyan Cannon/Leon & Mary Russell”

Dyan Cannon was an actress in the seventies, I guess? This is why these episodes are so useful to me pop culturally. That and I definitely needed to learn about Leon Russell, MUSIC WIZARD. Although now I know what Chevy Chase looked like in his skivvies, which was NOT ANYTHING I NEEDED TO SEE.

Saturday Night Live, “Buck Henry/Gordon Lightfoot”

Laraine Newman snatching a crutch out from under Chevy Chase is beautiful. This is the beginning of the end, I think; there’s the fun tension that the show taps into, and then there’s the real tension simmering in the background. They’re coming for you, Chevy. “Talk Back” is a wonderful sketch. “Crowd Audition” goes great until the lynching joke (NOOO). Baby Lorne continues to offer the Beatles money. (And shit on Ringo. RINGO IS THE BEST YOU ASSHOLE.) Garrett Morris sings Schubert beautifully, but the scrolling text… if the joke had been the producers being amazed that one of their young, hip performers liked and performed Schubert, that’d be hilarious, but it’s racialized.

Saturday Night Live, “Kevin Hart/Sia”

Sia’s performance of “Elastic Heart” is astonishing and heartbreaking. Kate McKinnon is a comedy goddess. The “James Brown” sketch is beautifully silly.

Project Progress

Sailor Moon: 7.7% (1/13)
Saturday Night Live: 15.3% (5/39)
Star Trek: 32.5% (13/40)

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Eralk Fang

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