Daryl, Abraham and Sasha encounter a band of Negan’s Saviors for the first time:
This Instantly Iconic Line:
“Your property now belongs to Negan.”
Abraham’s Hilariously Defiant Questioning:
Daryl Found a Bazooka:
This episode aired on Valentine’s Day… and Rick Grimes didn’t have a good one:
Rick watched his new girlfriend, Jessie, and her son get devoured by walkers in front of him and then had to chop off said girlfriend’s arm in order to free his son.
How it happened in the comics:
Oh yeah and then…
Carl Lost an Eye:
Exactly like in the comics:
The “Glenn Lives!” Moment:
Glenn, for the near-20th time, gallantly almost dies on this show, this time trying to distract the herd of walkers away from his trapped wife, Maggie.
…Not so fast. Glenn will not die… here. He is saved by the well-timed arrival and marksmanship of Sasha and Abraham:
The “Slice and Slash” Last Stand Montage:
Perfectly edited and scored to wring all the proper emotions out of the audience, the momentous last stand that the Alexandrians make against the herd, not knowing if they will win, made us swell with pride. Pride at how boldly the Alexandrians have risen since their pasta-making, cocktail party-hosting days and pride at how far Rick’s group has come in embracing and guiding the Alexandrians toward adulthood in the Walker Apocalypse.
Daryl’s Lake of Fire:
Daryl, having just been robbed of his crossbow, apparently takes a shining to the bazooka he’s found (who wouldn’t?), making use of it again when, after dumping propane into the lake, he shoots a RPG into the water, creating a walker-friendly bonfire, saving the day once and for all:
LINE OF THE EPISODE:
“If you have to eat sh*t, best not to nibble. Bite, chew, swallow, repeat.”
SEASON 7 of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” premieres 7 weeks from today, thus beginning our celebratory countdown with the 7 best episodes of the show thus far, in our humblest of opinions, of course.
DISCLAIMER: It is a tall order to ask any “Walking Dead” fan to just list SEVEN of his/her favorite episodes, but LIL GRIPES rose to the occasion. Mind you, if we’ve omitted a favorite of yours, PLEASE comment below and let us know! Let us know what you loved about it! xx
No. 7: Season 5 Episode 1, “No Sanctuary”
The best “Walking Dead” episodes tend to relish in a slow burn rather than high-octane action. “No Sanctuary” is one of the spare, spectacular exceptions.
Maybe it is the elevation of the stakes we knew our heroes were facing right from the start…This season premiere picking up chronologically rightafter our protagonists were all herded into a dank and dim (read: creepy) train car at Terminus. It opens with them then being herded off into ::you guessed it:: a human slaughterhouse. When Glenn Rhee, Daryl Dixon and Rick Grimes are just four people away from having their throats slit in a human-trough lineup, you goddamn better be sitting on the edge of your seat biting what’s left of your nails.
*More on Glenn’s hilarious James Bond-esque evasion of certain death not once, but three times, later.
Maybe it is the satisfaction derived from watching the sweet, slow blow of revenge… Thanks to Carol 2.0’s boldest act of badassery yet (leading a herd of walkers whilst covered in their guts toward her friends’ place of capture and blowing up a propane tank to lure said walkers toward our heroes’ captors, the Termites), we got to see glorious gore exacted upon the villains for once. Never has having human faces being devoured on this show been as satisfying as when these walkers made a fine Sunday feast out of the Termite cannibals.
(I literally applauded and hooted in cheering during the scene in which the above GIF appeared)
Maybe it’s that our heroes have reunited again as a family working together toward a common goal after spending a whole half-season sprawled apart. With Rick gone farmer all of season four, it was especially welcome to see “Kong Fu Rick” back, blasting machine guns while dripping forehead-to-beard with both the blood of enemy humans and walkers. Given the first chance via Carol’s explosive diversion, Rick stabbed and gunned his way to freedom, leading his group out of the hazy maze of foggy smoke, fiery walkers, and frightened cannibals with appropriate bravado. Rick made it clear: The show had returned from summer hiatus and so had he–he’s playing for keeps Season 5:
*Now back to Glenn… One of the mostly darkly funny moments this entire series has been how Glenn managed to evade near-death this many times in a roll in the slaughterhouse… Especially given that it was a bat-to-the-head situation, as if morbidly teasing what’s to come for him in the comics (Negan, you SOB). The guy lined up before him had just been knocked unconscious over the trough and his throat just slit open, bleeding him dry. The expression on Glenn’s face (brilliantly brought to life by Steven Yeun) said it all: “Here it comes. This show is about to kill off a major beloved character…again.”
Terminus butcher raises his bat to knock out Glenn. The Termites’ leader interrupts him, “Hey, how many shell counts did you have?” He answers.
Butcher raises bat over Glenn again… Termite leader says to the other butcher, “I need your shell count!” He replies, “Oh man, I’m sorry; I didn’t count mine… It’s my first round-up.”
Leader excuses him for this time’s slip-up and decides to use the moment to chit-chat with Rick. After a good five minutes pass, the first butcher resumes raising his bat over the back of Glenn’s head for the third time. MID-swing, *KA-BOOM* An explosion knocks them all off their feet and onto their sides.
And Glenn the Survivor survives…again…
~ CUE 007 THEME ~
LINE OF THE EPISODE:
“[My bag] has a machete with a red handle… That’s what I’m gonna use to kill you.”
– Rick to Gareth, the Terminus leader
P.S. How hot does Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan) look in this promo photo for this incredibly grisly episode? They don’t call it sexy dirt for nothin’:
Episode ranked #6 next week… Suggestions of your own?
Via submitted fan videos (from Lil), Lil asks underrated questions about DC’s The Flash, Marvel’s Captain America and AMC’s/Image Comics’ The Walking Dead.
We saw an older Flash played by John Wesley Shipp on last season’s The Flash finale. That made me wonder: Would an older speedster like a 70 year-old Jay Garrick be necessarily slower and/or weaker than a 25 year-old Barry Allen?
Do speedsters age? Obviously, they do in the Greg Berlanti DC-verse because John Wesley Shipp was meant to look his age–a very handsome 61! If so, how much slower than normal humans do speedsters age, if they age differently at all?
RUN ON THAT.
Captain America is just a regular human being at the peak of human regenerative, athletic, and physical capabilities. Causal movie-goers may not know this very important detail but he is, in fact, not a “super”-hero, not technically. So yes, Cap CAN get super-super chunky if he chose to give up crime-fighting and just binge Netflix for a living while exclusively eating Chipotle for the rest of his life.
The question is:How long would that take?
How long would it take Captain America to lose his six-pack (or twelve-pack, really) and acquire a dad body?
And how long before his incredible metabolic rate can’t prevent him from tipping the scales toward a verdict of “morbidly obese”?
“How long would it take Captain America to acquire a Dad Body?”
When I say “stars,” I don’t mean celebrities like Bear Grylls or Dave Salmoni. I mean specifically singers and actors like Beyoncé, Eminem, Tom Cruise, and Jamie Foxx. The artists.
Still, let’s keep in mind that a lot of these superstars came from humble and often-rough beginnings. It might not take as long for them to revert back to basic survivalist instincts as you would think for someone with so-called “champagne problems.”
*SIGH* Let me begin by stating that I so wish people weren’t thisobsessed with race. We don’t need to inject race into discussions where it doesn’t belong, but nevertheless, racial controversy has bled over into conversations about nerd-centric movies and TV shows. This applies to gender in equal measure. So… let’s do this.
Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One
INSTEAD OFthrowing a collective hissy fit when a Hollywood star who happens to be Caucasian is cast in the role of a canonically non-white character, we should be acknowledging and cheering on the increasingly diverse casting that is happening in Superhero (and general Geek Culture)-Land as of late. Progress is happening, but people have a tendency to focus on the negative and controversial rather than all the good.
For example, when Tilda Swinton was cast as the Tibetan sorcerer Ancient One in Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange, people flipped out. For every “Ancient One casting,” however, there seems to be double the instance of reverse whitewashing (colorwashing? brown-washing?) and gender-reversing (see: 2016’s Ghostbusters) going around…
“Progress is happening, but people focus on the negative rather than all the good.”
Yes, let’s start here. Everyone complains about white male hegemony (a.k.a. “The Man”) but the fact that they cast Tilda Swinton, an actress acclaimed for her daringly androgynous roles, as a powerful male sorcerer is actually quite forward-thinking. Tilda may be “white,” but the Ancient One is one of the most powerful entities in Marvel comics. He is a teacher to many fellow superheroes and without him, Stephen Strange would not have become the Sorcerer Supreme. They chose to endow his skill set and title upon a female. Funny how this is never brought up amidst the controversial cloud that looms over this casting choice, but that is incredibly socially inclusive and progressive.
2. Floyd Lawton a.k.a. Deadshot (portrayed by Will Smith in Suicide Squad, 2016)
This is not a colorblind case of a minority actress being repackaged as an all-white character. Actress Chloe Bennet is half-Chinese and half-Caucasian in real life, but Daisy Johnson is 100% white in the comics. They rewrote her character for the TV adaptation so that the actress’ Chinese lineage played a major factor in Daisy’s own identity. As the earthshaking superhero, her powers apparently originate from her Inhuman Chinese mother, who was a major villain in the second half of season 3.
4. Elektra Natchios(portrayed by Élodie Yung and Lily Chee in Daredevil, 2016)
CHANGE: White Female ⇒ Asian Female
Young Elektra (Lily Chee) on the show:
One of the most iconic female anti-heroes in Marvel Comics history, Elektra Natchios, the main love interest of Matt Murdock/Daredevil, has always been closely affiliated with her Greek lineage. Well, in the Netflix adaptation of Daredevil, they finally switched her character’s heritage up. This time, she’s a woman of indeterminate Asiatic descent who was adopted by a Greek diplomat at a young age. One can’t help but think this change was to accommodate the actress’ actual half-Cambodian ethnic makeup.
5. Iris and Joe West (portrayed by Candice Patton and Jesse L. Martin respectively on The Flash,2014-present)
CHANGE: White ⇒ Black
Comics ‘ Iris West v The CW’s Iris West
Comics’ Joe West v The CW’s Joe West
Many were initially shocked at the momentous casting of Barry Allen/The Flash’s love interest and her father/his foster father as African-Americans. While race had little-to-no impact on their characters’ context, this was major cause for celebration of racial inclusion because of Iris’ major role in Barry’s life. She is his Lois Lane and she has never been depicted or portrayed as anything but Caucasian before this version. Even the most cynical of Social Justice Warriors (SJWs) should be loudly applauding this moment in pop culture history.
So nice they did it twice! While Warner Bros. turned their back on Grant Gustin from the CW’s The Flash for the titular speedster big-screen role, they adopted the TV adaptation’s idea of casting Iris West as a young black woman.
10. Jimmy Olsen (portrayed by Mechad Brooks on Supergirl, 2015-present)
CHANGE: White ⇒ Black
Not only is this the first non-white Jimmy Olsen, it’s also the first time we’ve seen Superman’s photographer BFF look like a buff leading man instead of a scrawny, goofy sidekick.
Again, SJWs, not only did they change an iconic protagonist from white to black, they made him pinup-worthy… and Supergirl’s love interest. In fact, the actor’s second-billed on IMDB as the leading man to Melissa Benoist’s Kara Zor-El.
11. Dr. John (now Joan) Watson (portrayed by Lucy Liu on Elementary, 2012-present)
CHANGE: White Male ⇒ Asian Female
The classic “Elementary, My dear Watson” line now refers to an Asian-American female instead of a British male war veteran. The fact that the show has been a continued hit for CBS for four years now and little raucous has been raised over this double-identity swap suggests the public is readier than most think for gender and race-bending entertainment.
12. Nikita (portrayed by Maggie Q on Nikita, 2010-2013)
CHANGE: White Female ⇒ Asian Female
Maggie Q as Nikita, the first Asian lead ever on a broadcast drama series:
Three previous incarnations of Nikita before the CW series:
La Femme Nikita has been a story told many times and many ways with many different starlets. The CW took a big-but-calculated risk casting this screen icon as anything other than Caucasian for the first time. Despite a decidedly shitty timeslot (Fridays at primetime), it amassed a huge cult following and excellent critical raves for its four seasons. Moreover, it made Maggie Q, previously known for being a model-turned-action star in Asia, an easily recognizable name and face in the American conscious.
13. Mercedes Graves (portrayed by Tao Okamoto in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, 2016)
CHANGE: White Female ⇒ Asian Female
This change may feel merely ornamental at first blush. However, Mercedes (“Mercy” as Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor fondly called her) is canonically not just a cog in Luthor’s evil entourage, but his most trusted advisor and personal assistant (and sometimes bodyguard/chauffeur). Mercy has caused Superman and Lois Lane a lot of grief due to her unwavering loyalty to Lex. The appearance of Mercedes in the film was a delightful Easter Egg find for comics fans and having her look Asian is majorly indicative of mass media’s increasing acceptance of all.
An iconic superheroine based in Norse mythology is being played by an African-American actress? Her character also will be playing Thor’s new love interest (He’s ditched little Ms. Natalie Portman apparently). What a great time to be alive! Run the streets streaking in pure ecstasy!
This is, perhaps, the biggest race swap in geek film and TV history. Spider-Man is Marvel Comics’ most popular superhero by far and Mary Jane one of its most endearing love interests. Mary Jane’s race is not integral at all to her character, but devoted fans may take umbrage with the discrepancy between the image of her in their minds and their beloved comics and the one on the big screen.
They’ll go along for the ride, though, and accept the change that has come… Because change has come. Significant progress has been made in diversity in La La Land and it would be foolish to complain about a few perceived slights and not proudly laud the bold steps Hollywood has taken forward. It’s a brave new world, folks. Accept it. Love it…
So in the latest DCEU news, Suicide Squad aint doing so hot with the critics. And that’s an understatement:
“[A] dank sewer of messy actions beats and misplaced machismo.” – IndieWire
“Bad. Not fun bad. Not redeemable bad. Not the kind of bad that is the unfortunate result of artists honorably striving for something ambitious and falling short. Suicide Squad is just bad. It’s ugly and boring, a toxic combination.” – Vanity Fair
“Enchantress is, let’s face it, the lamest DC villain since Sharon Stone stalked Catwoman.” – Variety
“There’s no big, meaty, iconic Joker scene for us to marvel at. [Jared Leto’s] occasional appearances detract from the smaller characters the movie is actually about, to the point you almost wish he wasn’t in the movie at all.” – Gizmondo
“A sports dream team whose combined efforts don’t nearly measure up to the talents of its individual players.” – The Hollywood Reporter
One bit of good news: This movie, if all else sucks, seems to have Deadshot and Harley Quinn nailed down:
“[Deadshot]’s underplaying is a relief. In this headache of a movie, he provides the aspirin.” – Chicago Tribune
[Quinn] is “radioactively watchable, swinging her baseball bat this way and that, selling this skeezy male-fantasy nut-job with wide-eyed enthusiasm.”– Chicago Tribune
1. DC needs Suicide Squad to do well.
At least at the box office. Marvel Studios/Disney has dominated the big screen for the past few years with multiple blockbusters a year, big profits and a consistently highly positive critical consensus. All the recent live-action DCEU films (Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice have been the only two for the last three years) have been critical flops, while the MCU kept upping its standard with each new release.
With the upcoming Justice League franchise and solo spin-offs, the DCEU could use a huge shot of adrenaline via Suicide Squad. It seemed like the perfect film to deliver the masses such a drug. Colorful, quirky characters who are also complete lethal sociopaths. Bad guys banded together to fight even badder guys. The perfect summer ensemble blockbuster. Well, until the reviews poured in, anyways.
Colorful, quirky characters who are also complete lethal sociopaths.
2. Bad reviews don’t mean low box office.
The reviews may not actually affect the numbers, with its trailers pushing the charms of stars Will Smith as Deadshot and Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn HARD. Jared Leto as the Joker also feels like a must-see if only to gauge whether he’s a worthy successor to Heath Ledger’s legendary take on the iconic villain.
3. Justice League is too tonally different from Suicide Squad for audiences to connect the two.
Also, regardless of box office performance, the Suicide Squad franchise is tonally opposite from the Justice League films. These are a group of villains killing other villains, whereas every member of the Justice League is a Boy or Girl Scout when it comes to morals and ethics. If there is negative residue from Suicide Squad, it won’t drip onto the Justice League.
These are a group of villains killing other villains.
4. The trailers for Justice League and Wonder Woman looked cohesive and substantive. The ones for Suicide Squad did not.
Just last week, I was telling a friend how I feared that Suicide Squad‘s trailer was so flashy that it seemed like the movie itself might lack all actual substance. And here we are.
Whereas Wonder Woman and Justice League trailers allowed glimpses into stories of self-discovery, organic formation of friendships and bonds of love (in addition to the occasional Flash whooshing into a room and Wonder Woman waving that Lasso of Truth around), Suicide Squad promos seemed to be all about zingers and highlighting myriad ways their main characters do what they do best–killing people with the utmost pizzazz.
Clear indications that a trailer for a movie is probably better than the movie itself is when it’s 100% action-packed CGI set pieces mixed in with “witty” one-liners. Throw in an exceedingly hip soundtrack and it’s hard to imagine that the editors aren’t overcompensating for a product much lesser than the sum of its promotional efforts.
5. Batfleck might be the best thing to happen to the DCEU in a while.
Although the theatrical version of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (hey, could we get a longer title, please?) was generally trashed, Ben Affleck seemed to receive universal praise for portraying a better Bruce Wayne than perhaps even Christian Bale or Michael Keaton.
As a matter of fact, critics lauded Ben Affleck’s cameo in Suicide Squad, singling him out as a much-welcome “treat” who brings a few surprises with him into the film.
Hey, maybe Batfleck may not be the Batman we deserve but he is the one we need…to save the DCEU, after all.
P.S. We are BONKERS over Margot Robbie/Harley Quinn’s hair, wardrobe and makeup. Spot-on for the character yet very 2016. Expect to see lots of this in cosplay come October 31
I DON’T CARE FOR FEMINISM. I’m an egalitarian and thank God, the first live-action cinematic Wonder Woman/Diana Prince has embodied egalitarianism proudly and wholly thus far. The Diana we’ve seen so far and will continue to see in Justice League spin-offs (including 2017’s Wonder Woman) fights for justice wherever it is lacked. Her goals aren’t prioritized based on gender or any other creed. She loves men and many aspects of being feminine. FACT CHECK: She also doesn’t just fight for women’s rights; she fights for all’s rights. She is not sexless nor emotionless. We watched her flirt with Ben Affleck’s Batman as if he were a little boy (She is almost 5,000 years older than him, to be fair), using the power of her physical beauty and internal steeliness in equal measure.
As the actress who portrays her, real-life Israeli wonder Gal Gadot, says, “[Wonder Woman] has many strengths and powers, but at the end of the day she’s a woman with a lot of emotional intelligence. She’s loving… It’s a mistake when women cover their emotions to look tough. I say let’s own who we are and use it as a strength.” It is silly to think being sexual or nurturing is somehow a depiction of weakness. You can have your seat at the big boy’s table while being gentle and vulnerable in addition to traditionally good-looking.
Wonder Woman doesn’t fight for women’s rights. She fights for all’s rights.
With that, and the new full-length trailer for Wonder Woman released at San Diego Comic Con 2016, let’s GIF Wonder Woman’s journey in order of real-life chronology:
Note: Diana was molded out of clay and given life by the Greek god, Zeus, rendering her immortal.
Early 1900s (Wonder Woman):
Princess Diana meets the first man she’s ever seen in her 4,000 years of life–crashed pilot Steve Trevor (Chris Pine)–on the shores of her secluded home, Themyscira:
Wonder Woman loves men and many aspects of being feminine.
After meeting Trevor, Diana realizes the world is in peril and needs her specific skill set, hence her donning various early-20th century Western disguises:
And then fights baddies in her true colors:
That moment when Wonder Woman breaks a board with her friggin’ hips:
Part 1: LASSO…
Part 2: SLICE!
Oh yeah, I fight old-school. F*** your bullets! (NOT an anti-gun stand. Yay, 2nd Amendment!):
2016 (Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice):
An antiques dealer now in the 21st century, Diana Prince is seen mostly in fancy civilian garb for much of this movie:
She suits up with heavy metal again in the film’s third act, when she flies in to save Batman from obliteration and joins forces with the Bat and Superman to fight Doomsday:
This face she makes. “Bad boy, Doomsday! Bad boy…I’m gonna cut off your arm now.”
She lassoes Doomsday so Batman and Superman can take their respective swings at him. Girl can work on a team!
Diana takes her licks in battle in stride. When she smiles at Doomsday for knocking her down… SO HOT:
Wonder Woman will return in 2017 in June for her solo film and again in November in Justice League: