Catastrophe, Episode 2

Rob: Can’t you just accept that I like you and I want to be with you?

The tagline for the late How I Met Your Mother was “A Love Story in Reverse”, and as I continue to watch Catastrophe, I believe that it’s the perfect description for this particular show. Part of that is due to the disastrous ending to HIMYM: what was the real love story, Ted and Tracy or Ted and Robin?, but Sharon and Rob are doing everything in reverse. First the pregnancy, then they move in together and now they’re engaged. What’s so delightful about this show is that Sharon and Rob are making the best of a horrible situation (like Rob said last week), and they genuinely like each other. People get married because they’re having a child together all the time (says the 25 year old single woman with no children), and it doesn’t work out. I think it will with Sharon and Rob, even though all of this is happening because of the pregnancy.

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Zoo, Season 1 Episode 9: “Murmuration”

I’m clearly out of practice on watching television shows that aren’t on the CW (Hart of Dixie was just added to Stan, so it’s pretty much my favourite thing right now), so the whole idea of Agent Dixon from Alias working for Reiden Global never occurred to me. I thought that Mitch had handed over the Mother Cell, so it was a surprise when he managed to escape. One of the best things about Zoo is that it doesn’t take itself too seriously, but I clearly haven’t been taking it quite seriously enough, because I was impressed by the twist, which is like a much pulpier version of the ending to 1984. On the plus side, it’s not the end, because there are still four more episodes to go, and everything is up in the air now, pun fully intended, because this week Zoo decided to pay homage to The Birds.

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Melbourne Writers Festival: Five Minute Story Slam

This year my “Why not, it sounds cool” event at the Melbourne Writers Festival was the five minute story slam. Just in case you were in any doubt that I’m a Melburnian with hipster inclinations (I’m way too into pop music and don’t put enough effort into clothes to be a real hipster. I also eat meat), I went to a story slam. I bought my five event pass, and since four of the events I was going to were about television (my last two sessions are tomorrow), I should go to something slightly different. I thought about doing some professional development and going to a climate change related event, but they’re usually quite depressing. I could have gone to see Jon Ronson, but instead decided on the story slam, because it’s something I’d never heard of and thought it could be fun.

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I miss Game of Thrones

The only fandom I’ve ever been super invested in is Harry Potter, and I more or less stopped paying attention to that fandom a year after the final book was released. I remember waiting three years for Order of the Phoenix and being slightly disappointed with that book, and I remember the thrill of trying to finish both Half-Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows on the days they were released. However, nothing compares to those two years in between the sixth and seventh books. I visited at least three Harry Potter fansites on an almost hourly basis, and listened to all the podcasts I could for the best crackpot theories. The closest I’ve come to getting that feeling back is during a season of Game of Thrones. This post contains spoilers for both the show and the books.

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Utopia, Series 2 Episode 2: “Shovels Ready”

This week, Utopia took on the controversial East-West Link while managing to be completely apolitical. People who work for the public service, including the ABC, have to be apolitical, which means they can’t express their opinions about government policies in public. The staff of the Nation Building Authority have no time to express their opinions on whether the tunnel under Melbourne is a good idea or not, because they’re so busy trying to get it built. His main obstacle is Rhonda, who works for the Prime Minister in some sort of communications capacity, as she wants to launch the construction of the tunnel, which gets completely out of hand. Meanwhile, Nat wants to hire a manager for the Brisbane office so she doesn’t have to keep flying between Sydney and Melbourne, and for some reason HR gets involved.

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Show Me a Hero, Part 2

This week on Show Me a Hero, the new mayor isn’t very popular, which is pretty much what I predicted. I’m relatively unspoiled about the real life events upon which the show is based, but I know this battle lasts up until 1994. Part 2 of Show Me a Hero begins in January 1988, which means we’re about a year on from the beginning of the miniseries, and the Yonkers City Council hasn’t made any progress with low-income housing. Judge Sand is becoming impatient and is willing to bankrupt the local government to ensure that they comply with his decision. Meanwhile, the people who elected their councilmen are irate that they have complied with the Judge Sand – my favourite protest sign was “Sand is Dirt”, which isn’t quite true, but it was clever. We’re still getting glimpses of the lives of people who would benefit from low-income housing, which reminds us just how far removed they are from this process.

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Book Review: The Revenge of Seven

The Revenge of Seven is one of the four books I got at the YA Book Swap at the Melbourne Writers Festival on Sunday. The Lorien Legacies, by the pseudonymous author Pittacus Lore (who is not as much a character in the series as Lemony Snickett), is a series that is entertaining even if it isn’t necessarily well written. It’s not quite Zoo (I’ve become a really strong advocate for that show), but the dialogue is terrible, the characters are barely characters, and it prioritises plot. I bought the first book in the series, I am Number Four on my Kindle, and The Power of Six not long after. They’re page turners in the vein of Dan Brown but for Young Adults, and they have a place in the world. The problem with these books is that they’re good for a reading marathon, but I don’t really care about them when I’m not reading them. The third and fourth books continued the plot of getting the remaining Legacies together, which became a slight drag, but The Revenge of Seven finally moves the story along.

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