Legion Is Unleashed

legion-is-unleashed

Last night, Fox released a new TV show from the Marvel universe – all about Legion, otherwise known as David Heller, and his struggle to deal with his powers. Or, more accurately control the powers he doesn’t even know he has.

David doesn’t know that he’s a Mutant, instead he thinks he’s a paranoid schizophrenic, who has been admitted to a psychiatric hospital, and is trying to deal with his illness. But as a viewer, we are shown that this is not the case. David in an incredibly powerful Mutant, who can do incredible things. Things like switch bodies, move objects with his mind, possibly even read minds too, and so much more that hasn’t been explored yet.

And, there’s been a murder. Or someone has disappeared, and only David knows what has happened, but his fractured mind can’t make sense of anything that has happened. Someone desperately wants to know though, and more importantly, want to study David’s powers, leading to more mystery and intrigue.

What is really clever about this show, is how the writers show David’s perception of the world. We see his memories, his fantasies, and through trippy graphics, hints of his true power, all while not being given all the answers to what is going on. Right up until the end of the episode, we are kept guessing as to who everybody is, what is happening, and what is real and what is David’s imagination. It’s confusing, but in a good way, you can follow along, but there’s still mystery as to what is actually going on, and I absolutely loved it.

I know I say that a lot about Marvel’s TV adaptions, as well as it’s films, but I did genuinely love this too. Going in, I had no idea just what Legion was, further than the fact that David was a Mutant, and I came out absolutely gripped, and desperately needing more of this series.

I must commend Dan Stevens for his acting skills, he has made David come to life brilliantly. And after some internet research on the original comic counterpart, I can see how well he has laid the groundwork for David’s powers and psyche to come to life. It was subtle, yet excellently done, I can’t wait to see what he, and the rest of the series, does next!

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Westworld Brings Fantasy To Life

Last night I started watching the JJ Abrams show Westworld, and instantly fell in love with it. For those who don’t know, Westworld is a show set in a future where a company makes incredibly human-esque robots, puts them in a ‘park’ make to look like a cowboy western, and let rich people in to carry out their fantasies with them. These fantasies can include murder (of which there is a lot of in this show), sex (again, of which there is a lot of) and basically anything the person wants. All the while, these robots are glitching, remembering what is happening to them, which could put the humans in danger.

Currently there’s only two episodes out, and I have thoroughly enjoyed both episodes. It’s the perfect mix between Channel 4’s Humans and Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse, just with a lot more blood and violence. And when I say blood and violence, I mean that this should would fit right in with Game Of Thrones and Marvel’s Netflix TV shows. Blood flies as fast as the bullets do, and the creators don’t hold back with it.

Really, the creators don’t hold back on anything in general. This show is created like it has the budget of a film, with enough characters and story lines to keep everybody interested. The acting is superb, as you would expect from the all star cast. Anthony Hopkins’ Doctor Ford is a mystery and Ed Harris’ nameless character is even more so. The way actors like Evan Rachel Wood can instantly jump from being an emotionless robot during a diagnostic, to a terrified human being is incredibly and has to be commended.

Everything adds to the creepy feel of the show, it’s almost enough to put your teeth on edge. All the way through, you’re majorly creeped out, and questioning your own morality. If you were in this situation, would you be one of the good guys, or one of the bad? Would you go and hunt down the bandit, sleep with the prostitutes in the tavern, go hunting for treasure? Would you have an innocent holiday in Westworld, or would you act out every depraved fantasy you’ve ever had?

If you were a fan of Dollhouse back in the day, or Humans now, this is definitely the show for you. It’s clever, sleek, and brilliantly written. Everything is interwoven, mysteries are opening up, and there’s a Jurassic Park-esque feeling that something is going to go wrong at any moment. I love it, and cannot wait for the next episode.

Pointless Character Death

Hey, long time no see. Blame the damn assignments for uni. Anyway, I want to talk in this blog post about a problem. Something that is a major problem in so many really good franchises, that don’t just annoy me, it annoys a lot of people. I’m talking about pointless character death.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m totally fine with character death… sort of. But only when it is a necessary death that serves a purpose. When it doesn’t serve a purpose and it was simply done for either shock value or to create tension between characters, it really winds me up.
Take Sam on How To Get Away With Murder, his death was necessary because the entire show is built around Keating and her students getting away with his murder. His death was semi-justified too, he was an absolutely horrible human being, for reasons I won’t get into for people who plan on watching the show, and his death is the premise of the first season.
Another example is Rue from The Hunger Games. Its a horrendously painful character death, but it serves a purpose of sparking off the revolution and forces Katniss to fight back and get revenge on that Capital.
But when a character death is utterly pointless, I just get so annoyed. Recently, I was watching season 10 of Supernatural, and it got to – spoiler alert here guys if you’re not on season 10 – where Charlie Bradbury died. And her death was so completely and utterly pointless and wrong that I was angry about it for days afterwards. Basically, she died to drive a wedge between Sam and Dean, that was it. She died for that single reason, there was no other reason whatsoever. And it was incredibly annoying.
I mean, the writers could have not killed her, and just injured her instead, easily! The whole reason why her death caused the wedge was because she was helping Sam find a cure for Dean and they were lying to him about it. But because she was in danger, Sam had to tell Dean what was happening, and it caused a huge wedge between them because she died. But the same effect would have been caused if the writers had saved her, but she was badly injured instead. She could have easily been badly injured and the wedge would have still been made. Hell, Cas could have saved her, because he can teleport because he’s an angel and the wedge between the brothers would have still been there.
But no, the writers killed her off. And now she probably isn’t coming back. 
This happens time and time again in things, TV shows especially, where characters are killed off for no reason. I understand it when an actor wants to leave, like with Derek and Greys Anatomy, but even then that death could have been avoided. Derek could have simply just stayed in DC and asked for a divorce or something instead of dying in one of the worst character death scenes I have ever seen. I cried after that one. Actually cried, and I rarely cry over character death, I generally end up just getting annoyed.
Because characters aren’t supposed to just die to create tension, or to be a shock that creates hype on the internet. It’s supposed to really mean something. It’s supposed to be like Buffy’s mum, who died to force Buffy to grow up and stand on her own two feet. Like Dobby, who died saving Harry. Like probably Captain America, who’s death will hopefully force Tony to see the extent of what he’s doing and stop the war.
It’s supposed to be like that, not a death just for hype. When it’s for hype, it’s just pathetic, and clear that the writers are lazy and have no idea on what to do with a character anymore. It’s stupid, and I hate it. Now don’t get me wrong, I understand when writers have to rapidly change story lines because actors are pregnant, like in Bones, so they have to write something like Vincent dying to force Booth and Brennan to finally sleep together out of shock or something, so Brennan gets pregnant. That I can totally understand, but surely it doesn’t always have to end in death?
Can’t a character just be injured for once? Or can’t they come back as a ghost? Or decide to move away? Or something that isn’t them dying for once?! Killing someone off isn’t the only way to get rid of them, it is entirely possible for characters to leave through other means and still have it hurt like hell. Look at the Doctor and Rose at Bad Wolf Bay, Christina leaving Greys Anatomy, Zack turning out to be Gormagon in Bones!
All of those hurt like hell, and with Rose and Zack alike, created great plot twists people weren’t expecting. It’s entirely possible to create a feels inducing moment without killing people off. Writers, take note of that, and stop killing people like Charlie Bradbury off. Please, before I lose my mind.
What do you guys think about character death like this? Do you think any of the people I’ve mentioned had a good send off, if so, why? Or are there any other characters you pretend didn’t die because their deaths were so utterly pointless? Or did you see a really great character send off that didn’t involve them dying? Let me know down in the comments, it would be great to hear from you!

And Then There Was One Massive Plot Twist

Hey everyone, I hope your Christmas’ were fun and you got everything you wanted! I had a pretty good time, and have mostly been sitting on my arse doing nothing all week. Well, when I say nothing, I mean watching TV, and my God did I stumble upon one hell of a TV special.
Of course, I’m talking about And Then There Were None, the BBC’s latest adaption of Agatha Christie’s novel, and over three nights I was utterly hooked on it. I’d been looking forward to watching this show ever since I saw the advert for it a while back, to be honest, I probably would have watched anyway because a) Aiden Turner is in it and I love that man a lot, and b) it’s a murder mystery. If there’s one thing I love to watch, it’s a murder mystery, or really anything to do with murder. So, I sat down and watched it, and I fallen in love.
First of all, the plot is amazing, ten strangers are invited to an island, each one with a secret, and slowly they get killed off one by one, not knowing who is behind it. Each person is killed according to poem that hangs in every persons room in the house, and when a body is found, the ten statues in the dining room reduce numbers. This could have gotten very monotonous after the third murder, possibly even predictable, but it never did. I was on tender hooks the entire time, wondering who was going to die next, and how it was going to be done. For the first two episodes, I resisted looking up the whole poem, but I had to by the end episode, just to see if I could get any clues from it, all I got instead was the creepy factor amping up further.
Secondly, the characters were incredibly cleverly written. Each one is hiding a common secret – they’re all guilty of murder in some way or other, and none of them have been caught for it. Between a doctor who drunk on the job during a surgery, to a cop who killed a gay man simply for being gay, every single one has killed at least one person and none feel the least bit guilty for it. And while some characters are sort of likable, you as the audience don’t really warm to anyone. Not to say that they all deserved to die (though let’s be honest, Douglas’ Booth’s character was a complete asshole and was pegged to be ‘the first to go’ from the start) but you don’t actually route for anybody, not really. I found myself liking Aiden’s character, not just for his face (or his body, dear lord that towel scene was a nice edition, thank you producers that one) but because he was honest. He admitted to his killings, and while showing no sign of remorse, he did show some brain, and some kindness at times. He didn’t just think of getting himself off the island, he did try to help the others he trusted to. So I liked him. Which (spoiler alert) made his death quite painful in the end, at least he was second to last to go, so it wasn’t too bad.
Nothing is all too obvious in plot line either, nothing is revealed straight away. You have to watch all three episodes to get everyone’s story, and to figure out who is behind all this. It is never made clear, or even hinted at, whether the killer is part of the ten or if they is another player in the mix. Trying to figure it out is nigh impossible, as at every turn you find out something new that creates a new theory. I had so many I lost count, and never once was I right in my deductions. At one point I went so far as to think that maybe this was all happening in someone’s head, and that this was some sort of psychotic break Shutter Island style, which seemed very plausible. Every theory seemed plausible as I went along, and I never expected the plot twist at the end.
Now, I’m going warn you SPOILERS AHEAD. IF YOU HAVE NOT WATCHED AND THEN THERE WERE NONE, SCROLL PAST THIS BIT RIGHT NOW. I HAVE WARNED YOU.

At the end, just when I thought I would never find out who was behind all the murder (let me tell you right now, if that had happened, I would have hit the roof in anger and this review would be very different) to find out that it was the judge all along – I never saw that coming in a million years! In hindsight, I probably should have, judge/jury/executioner and all that, but I honestly didn’t! I immediately discounted him after he faked his death, thinking him as just another victim, and possibly the sanest one of the lot. So to see him actually reveal that he was behind all of it, as a sort of ‘get the uncaught bad guys’ before dying himself, wow I had never even considered it. I actually screamed a little when I did if I’m honest.

SPOILER FREE ZONE STARTS AGAIN HERE.
Truly, And Then There Were None was a brilliant thrill ride of a TV show. Combing suspense, gore, murder and wonderful plot twists into a beautiful three hours. It distinctly reminded me of an old fashioned How To Get Away With Murder mini series, set in the space of a few days instead of a few months. I love every single second of it, and wish to see more things like this in the future! BBC get right on it, I need more!
Did anybody else see anything good over the holidays? If so, let me know, I need more things to watch to distract me from my essays and currently not much is working. Also, if you watched this show, let me know some of your theories, were you as shocked as I was when the killer was revealed? Let’s start a discussion going, I sure as hell don’t want to let this show end so soon!