Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Reflections on the 2016 A to Z Challenge

I love the A to Z Blogging Challenge! I have done this for three years now, and it's been a blast each time. In fact, this blog exists because of the challenge. A couple of years ago, I saw a post about it somewhere... I believe it was Google Plus. I was thinking about starting a blog anyway, but the challenge started that day. Sooo, I went through all the steps to create my blog, got everything set up, joined the challenge, and submitted my first post, all in one day!

This time, however, I did have some trouble. just a couple of days after the challenge began, I had to take my mom to the ER. I was visiting her in the hospital every day for a while, then brought her home, where I had to take care of her and handle much more than I ever had before. It was very nerve-wracking, and scary.

During all of this, everyone has been telling me that I had to take care of myself as well, so doing the challenge was part of that, even though I missed a few days. I really enjoy doing these posts, so it's more fun than work for me. My day job is in computer engineering and software engineering, so this blog is just pure fun for me. So, even though I missed some days, I thoroughly enjoyed the days in which I participated, even if it was sometimes difficult "doing something for myself."

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Z is for Zoe ('The 100')

All we have for Z is Zoe Monroe (Katie Stuart), on The 100, who was simply one of many other red-shirts. In other words, she existed for the purpose of dying. In her case, it was by suffocation after escaping a fire.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Y is for Actors Ybarra ( 'Gotham') and Yamamoto ('The 100')

There were absolutely no names that began with Y in any of my favorite shows, and way too many that contained Ys, or even ended in Y. So, I'm going with actor names this one time.

On Gotham, we've got Dustin Ybarra, who portrays Robert Greenwood. Greenwood is a crazy cannibal of women. Thankfully, he is recently deceased (Greenwood the character, not the actor).

Over on The 100, we've got Donna Yamamoto, who portrays Hannah Green, Monty's mom, aka "Momty." she's one of the most hated characters on the show, besides Pike. That's because she's a horrible person (the character). No wonder her own son is forced to go up against her to protect others!

X is for X-Names

OWe've got two Fox(es) and a Lexa. I know that's a bit of a cheat, but there are no Xaviers in any of my favorite shows, so that's all I've got. I already talked about Lexa (Alycia Debnam-Carey) from The 100 on L-day, so I'll just focus on Fox.

On Gotham, there's Lucious Fox (Chris Chalk), who is the only guy over at Wayne Enterprises who tells poor Bruce that his parents weren't horrible, and did what he could to help Bruce find the person who murdered them.

On The 100, we've got another Fox (Genevieve Buechner). Bellamy saved her from torture at Mount Weather, where they were brutally stealing bone marrow from people. But because it's The 100, she died anyway.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

W is for Wells ('The 100')

Once again, as we come to the end of the alphabet, we have only one name that starts with W out of all of my top five shows. Today it's Wells Jaha (Eli Goree) on The 100. Wells is a great character, and what happens to him in the first season is a total surprise. The 100 is all about those twists and turns, and bad luck, and nobody ever catching a break, and what we call on the podcast, "red shirts" (this is why it's called "Red Shirted: The 100 Podcast"). But hey, it's somehow still an awesome show!

V is for Victor ('Gotham')

The only V in my favorite shows is on Gotham (or as I like to call it, "Got Ham?"): Victor Zsasz (Anthony Carrigan). This guy is sadistic and worked for mobster Falcone, then Penguin. He actually cuts a mark into his own skin for each person he kills!

Monday, April 25, 2016

U is for Uncle Jack ('Second Chance')

OK, I'm stretching here, but the only "U" name I could find in my favorite shows was a guest character named Uncle Jack (Alvin Sanders) on Second Chance. He's such a minor character that he's actually a hologram used to trick a suspect into talking. Duval "wears" the hologram, and uses Arthur (the computer) to give him Uncle Jack's voice as well, on a web chat.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

R is for Rebecca & Rachel ('Limitless'), and Roan ('The 100')

R is pretty common as the first letter of many names, but apparently not for my favorite shows. There are only three on this list! Two of them come from my current favorite show, Limitless.

Rebecca (Jennifer Carpenter) is Brian's handler at the FBI. She likes Brian as a person in the beginning, until they start having trust issues. She's also very straight-laced, and doesn't like it when Brian tries to break the rules.

Rachel (Megan Guinan) is Brian's sister, and tries to cover for him when he lies. Until she doesn't. She inadvertently screws things up for Brian in a way, but she doesn't really have enough information to go off of to know whether anything Brian does is going to get him killed. So she errs in the side of protecting her brother

On The 100, Roan (Zach McGowan) was simply a prince, as the son of yesterday's Queen Nia, until Lexa killed her. Now he's King Roan. He's not as ruthless as his mom, and definitely not as evil as Ontari, the woman Nia set up to be the successor to Commander Lexa.
Before she knew Roan wasn't as bad as the other bad guys, Clarke tried to kill him

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Q is for Queen Nia ('The 100')

The only Q in all of my favorite shows is on The 100: Queen Nia (Brenda Strong). Nia was part of the Ice Nation, and a horrible person because she simply wants to murder everyone who won't submit to her. And so she is murdered horribly in front of a large crowd of people. Good job, Lexa!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

P is for Pritchard ('Second Chance'), Penguin & Peabody ('Gotham'), and Pike ('The 100')

On Second Chance, Pritchard can either refer to the son, Duval Pritchard (Tim DeKay) or the father, Jimmy Pritchard (Rob Kazinsky). The father looks more like the brother, but that's only because he died as an old man and was brought back to life as the younger, best version of himself.

On Gotham, we've got one of the most iconic villains, Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor)! He's completely insane, and entirely entertaining. Then there's Peabody (Tonya Pinkins), who's basically the lackey to the weirdo Dr. Strange, helping him to perform experiments on the criminally insane. Penguin is one of their victims!

And then we've got The 100, with one of the most hated characters of the show, Pike (Michael Beach). And why is he so reviled? Because his favorite pastime is killing Grounders and those who sympathize with them!
Kane finally got one over on Pike, temporarily

Monday, April 18, 2016

O is for Otto ('Second Chance'), and Octavia & Ontari ('The 100')

On Second Chance, Otto Goodwin (Adhir Kalyan) is a genius who knows how to bring dead people back to life as a younger, better version of themselves. Unfortunately, he's also insane. He brings them back just for the purpose of giving his sister transfusions so she won't die from her disease. Beyond that, he doesn't care about the people he brings back, or their families. At least he comes around later, but only after it's too late.

Over on The 100, we've got both a favorite and a least favorite. Octavia Blake (Marie Avgeropoulos) is definitely the favorite. She rides horses into the sunset and has decided to be mostly a Grounder because her own people have become pretty much horrible. That includes her own brother!

Ontari (Rhiannon Fish) is one of the least favorites of the whole show. She beheaded a child for goodness sake! And all so she could be the next Commander. Even the man tasked with making it official doesn't want this monster to have power. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

L is for 'Lucifer', Leslie ('Gotham'), and Lincoln & Lexa ('The 100')

Our first L is the name of a title character: Lucifer Morningstar (Tom Ellis). He's an evil, terrible person, yet somehow charming in human form. Sure, it doesn't really make any sense for the devil to ever be a "nice guy," but Lucifer is somehow a fantastic show anyway.

On Gotham, the mother of Gordon's (Ben McKenzie) fetus is Leslie (Morena Baccarin). Things are going really well for them. Until they're not. Gordon has been falsely accused of killing a fellow cop. Let's hope he can clear his name sooner than later so he can go back to being awesome and having the love he deserves.

Over on The 100, Lincoln is the first Grounder to teach the sky people that not all Grounders are horrible murderous fiends. Well, except for the part where he gets tortured after trying to kill Finn the first time he sees him. He's a good guy after that, although things haven't worked out so well for him recently.

We also have a big cheese Grounder: Lexa. She's the commander, and a fine one she is at that, even after falling for a sky woman. Except things don't work out well for her either. Oh yeah, and she was implanted with AI tech, so she was sort of a cyborg. Sort of.

Monday, April 11, 2016

I is for Ike ('Limitless'), Ivy ('Gotham') and Indra ('The 100')

There aren't many "I" characters, and the ones we have here are mostly secondary, but they're interesting.

On Limitless, we've got Agent Ike (Tom Degnan), who is one of the FBI agents who is supposed to keep Brian Finch in line. Ike (probably) isn't his real name. We never actually know his name. Brian just likes to call his two babysitters Mike and Ike in order to identify them.

On Gotham, Ivy "Pamela" Pepper (Clare Foley) is a little red-headed delinquent girl who likes to pick pockets and trick people out of their money. She's a little bit nuts, but in a very humorous way.

Finally, on The 100, Indra (Adina Porter) is one of the Grounders. She used to be considered one of the "bad guys," but she just wants to protect her people from the sky people. She's loyal, and later forms a bond with both Octavia and Kane from "skaikru."

Thursday, April 7, 2016

F is for Mama & Papa Finch ('Limitless'), Falcone & Fish ('Gotham'), and Finn ('The 100')

Not many character names start with F this time. Mama and Papa Finch (Blair Brown and Ron Rifkin) are from my favorite show, Limitless. Unfortunately, they aren't very exciting. They are the main character's (see B) parents. It's always nice to see a "Fringie" though (Blair Brown was in Fringe).

The Gotham characters are quite interesting this time. Falcone (John Doman) is basically the big cheese of the city of Gotham. He can get you anything. Just make sure you stay on his good side. 

Fish Mooney (Jada Pinkett Smith) is probably the toughest female on the show. Even when she dies, she lives. She's a badass evil biotch. 

Finally, we have Finn (Thomas McDonell) from The 100. He's a great character initially, then they decided to make his character a whole different person so that viewers would hate him and suddenly be OK with just having him die.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

B is for Brian & Boyle ('Limitless'), Bruce & Barbara & Butch ('Gotham'), and Bellamy ('The 100')

First off, my current favorite show has two major characters who have names beginning with B! If you haven't seen Limitless, I think of it as a cross between Psych and the Limitless movie (Bradley Cooper even shows up in a few episodes as Eddie Morra). The reason I also compare it with Psych is because it has a similar level of 80s-style humor, which is my favorite.

Anyway, the best character of the best show on TV right now is Brian Finch (portrayed by Jake McDorman). His character was a loser much like the Eddie Morra character in the movie, then becomes awesomely intelligent when he takes the drug AZT. In this case, Brian is not quite as amazing as Eddie, and winds up under his thumb. He's also forced to work for the FBI.

Speaking of the FBI, Agent Spellman Boyle (portrayed by Hill Harper) is the next B character. He's just you're average run-of-the-mill TV FBI agent, but he clashes with Brian in sometimes hilarious ways.

Now for a few Gotham characters:

Bruce Wayne (portrayed by David Mazouz) is Batman. Well, not yet. But this is who it's all about, right? On this show, he's just a kid, but probably the most fascinating and well-acted young character you'll ever see on TV. 
Barbara Kean (portrayed by Erin Richards) used to be Gordon's annoying fiancee, but now she's hilariously batty.
Butch Gilzean (portrayed by Drew Powell) is a mob enforcer, but Penguin managed to turn him into his slave for a while, which was quite amusing.
Finally, we've got The 100. Bellamy Blake (portrayed by Bob Morley) was a bad guy, then became a good guy, and now he's one of the worst characters on the show. Get a clue, Bellamy!
Bellamy gets tased 'cause he deserves it!

Friday, April 1, 2016

A is for Alfred ('Gotham') and Alexa ('Second Chance')... Plus Abby, Anya and A.L.I.E.

There are two major characters from my top four favorite shows who have names that begin with A: Alfred Pennyworth (portrayed by Sean Pertwee) from the hit Fox show Gotham, and Alexa (portrayed by Vanessa Lengies) from another Fox show called Second Chance. Alfred is my favorite character of these two, because he's an awesome character portrayed by a fabulous actor.

Alexa, not so much. She's a horrible person who betrays her friends so she can stay young forever. At least she comes around eventually, but only because her circumstances change. I don't want to give away spoilers, but she's not so great.

So, although Second Chance is my favorite of these two shows, the Gotham character wins out this time. And since this blog mostly covers The 100 recaps these days, here are a few notable characters from The 100:

Abby is one of my favorite characters on the show, although I have to admit that she has become a bit annoying of late.
Here, Abby takes the "chip" (explained next) from Jasper

A.L.I.E. is an AI hologram that only appears to people who have swallowed an AI chip, which makes them want to do what she says. Oh, and she was responsible for launching a nuclear holocaust that nearly ended the world.
This was how the world almost ended

Anya was one of the Grounder commanders. She was awesome and scary, but she also didn't last very long (sorry, I never created a gif of her because she died before I started gif-capping The 100).

My theme is at least one character from one of my current four favorite TV shows. Now, I like The 100, but it's no longer a favorite. But since they have so many characters, and most of my blog is devoted to it, I'll use it to fill in. So, the five shows from which I'll be pulling characters are Limitless, Second Chance, Lucifer, Gotham, and The 100 (those are in order, by the way). 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

'The 100' 3x08 'Terms and Conditions' Gif-Tweet-Cap: Will the Real Bellamy Please Stand Up?

What can I say? "Terms and Conditions," the eighth episode of Season 3 of The 100, is about as boring as this show gets. It's almost nothing but filler, until the end. Then some big S*** happens. Other than that, there are two main plots. Also, my podcast with Dahne will be embedded when available, and you can also subscribe on iTunes.

In the "City of Light" sideshow, Jasper helps Raven snap out of her loyalty to ALIE by mentioning Finn. This triggers an avalanche of emotional pain at the thought that she has lost all of her memories relating to emotional pain. Now, she's fully against ALIE rather than another ALIE zombie.
In the main plot, the Grounders come to tell Arkadia about the new barrier their setting up to stop them from killing anymore of their people, and how anyone who crosses it will be killed... like the people who used to belong to the bag of heads they throw down at Bellamy's feet. Pike doesn't want to make matters worse for the moment, but Bellamy decides to be even worse than Pike and kill the messengers without thinking about how, you know, they don't have enough ammunition to fight off a whole army at the moment.

Finn is also mentioned in the main plot, by Pike. He hinges Kane's failures on the idea that Kane "handed Finn over" to his death... except, that's not exactly how it happened. It's complicated. Still, Kane comes up with a brilliant plan of trickery against Pike, which Pike seems to thwart when Sinclair gets arrested while trying to sabotage a rover. But that was part of the plan!
The next part is Lincoln fake-beating the crap out of Sinclair:
And then Bellamy gets the surprise of his life when he realizes that it was all an act:
Pike sends everyone down to handle the prison break, leaving him vulnerable to Kane:
Kane gets the upper hand and drives Pike toward the gate, obviously planning to take Pike to the Grounders, as they wanted. Unfortunately, Bellamy is waiting at the gate, and Kane loves his surrogate son too much to run him over. Sooooo, Kane gets arrested and Pike sentences him to death, at which point Bellamy finally realizes that he doesn't like killing people willy-nilly after all. Oh, and by the way, if Kane dies, I will no longer be posting gif-tweet-caps.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

'The 100' 3x07 'Thirteen' Gif-Tweet-Cap: Beautiful Death (Of the World)

Well, we had some huge developments in the most unluckiest episode of The 100 ever, "Thirteen." Although there was plenty of horribleness, it was also one of the best ever, because of the amount of awesome science fiction-y entertainment it provided. The gifs are also available on my Tumblr post. My podcast with Dahne is embedded below, and you can also subscribe on iTunes.

We begin with a flashback where we see exactly what happened when the world almost ended. A regular woman named Becca created ALIE, which is the AI tech that thought that saving the world meant killing off humans by nuking everyone. Who knew that the blowing up of the world could be so beautiful!

Continuing with the flashback storyline, Becca's crew probably won't be happy to learn that she is still working on the AI that destroyed the world, even though they believe that the only remaining survivors are those living in the 13 stations in space that will soon make up the one and only Ark. She's even injecting herself with it, which... surprise surprise... turns her blood black! This makes Becca the first ever Nightblood.

Nope, her crew isn't happy at all, because they can't join the other 13 stations until she gives up all this nonsense. The other stations of the Ark threaten to shoot Polaris out of space in order to make an example of them to kick off Unity Day. She'd rather save her tech than the real life flesh and blood people who make up her crew, so Polaris is blown up as Becca makes her way down to Earth in a pod.

Meanwhile, Murphy is still being tortured by Titus, but escapes his restraints. He is the first to figure out the connection between Polis and Polaris, as the crashed pod is right there in the dungeon with him, with the missing "ar" on the pod. He also notices that there are images of a woman around the room, which Titus has been praying to. He assumes the woman is ALIE, since he's being tortured for information about the infinity symbol on the ALIE pill that Jaha gave him, and Titus has been calling it "the sacred symbol."
When Titus comes in and captures Murphy again, he continues to refuse to believe anything Murphy says about the symbol that doesn't coincide with his beliefs in his religion concerning the symbol.
Elsewhere at Polis, Semet drags in Octavia as his prisoner, and tells Lexa about how Arkadia tried to kill everyone again. Titus and he want to kill them all, but Lexa compromises (for the love of her girlfriend Clarke) with a barrier instead of a "death to Arkadia" order, which will give the good guys time to take down Pike from the inside. The other side of the compromise is a kill order on any Arkadian who crosses the barrier.
Semet hates the idea and tries to kill Lexa, but Titus stabs him in the neck with his own knife. Octavia and Clarke also hate the deal because of the kill order.
Octavia tries to convince her to say her goodbyes and come home, but those goodbyes to Lexa turn into a two-part sex-capade. At least Octavia is able to convince Indra to join her in battling Pike.
Titus doesn't like that Lexa has made concessions for Clarke, even allowing her to stay on the Grounders' side of the barrier, so he uses Murphy as bait to lure Clarke out so he can kill her with a gun and make it look like Murphy shot her. What he doesn't count on, however, is not knowing how to fire a gun. He wildly shoots around the room, trying to hit Clarke, but hits Lexa instead as she walks out to see what the commotion is all about.

There's a nice moment of Titus and Clarke saying their goodbyes, but then Titus pulls out the AI tech from the back of Lexa's neck, where the "sacred" infinity symbol resides.

So, Becca was the first "commander" of the Grounders (she was wearing her commander's space suit when she landed), and she had already implanted the upgraded ALIE AI tech (which has the infinity brand label slapped on it) in the back of her neck, making her part human and part computer. This tech was passed down a line of commanders, creating a line of Nightbloods (apparently their spawn has it too), and the old ALIE hologram wants the upgrade, probably so she can destroy it and set off nukes again.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

'The 100' 3x06 'Bitter Harvest' Gif-Tweet-Cap: Blood Has Blood... Or Not

The insanity continues in Arkadia in episode "Bitter Harvest" of The 100. The following gifs can also be found on my Tumblr post. The podcast will be embedded once it's available, but you can also subscribe to it on iTunes.

Jaha wants Raven to steal some code from the Ark computers in order to upgrade Alie. She starts to question what Jaha is asking of her, but immediately agrees once Alie makes the request. The crazy pill really makes them entirely compliant to this hologram. The one good thing about it, however, is that Raven is no longer miserable. She actually smiles now.

Meanwhile, Pike wants to kill more Grounders in order to steal their land so he can plant some healthy veggies. Gillmer and Monty's mom are sent to check it out and are totally cool with killing a child in order to keep their presence secret. Of course, Bellamy only disagrees with this stupid idea for a couple of seconds, until Pike tells him that killing more Grounders is necessary. Worse still, Monty is involved with this whole mess. Whatever.
Fortunately, Octavia saves the kid (and gets stung with burning tree sap in the process), but he doesn't appreciate it. And then when she tries to warn the other Grounders of the impending attack, he doesn't pipe up until she gets kicked in the face.

Fortunately, the Grounders finally show what they're truly made of, with a sneaky and violent response. They capture Octavia, then plan a counter-attack. Unfortunately, Octavia is able to get free and warn the Sky Douches, and only two of them die, one of which is Monroe. Oh well, we don't really know these people anyway.
Octavia is captured again, and Pike suspects that Kane was involved in warning the Grounders (which he was, since Octavia is his awesome little spy).
By the way, Kane gives Abby a little kiss on the cheek for "hope" or some such thing. Still, it was cute.
In Polis, Mountain Man Emerson has been sent over by Roan, and is dumped out and offered up as proof and answer to the Mt. Weather massacre of Farm Station.
Clarke wants him to die for what he did, but Lexa and Titus both call her out on her hypocracy. Obviously, she's OK with killing those who wronged her and her people, but not when her people are the ones in the wrong.
Clarke has a separate little talk with Emerson, and he simply calls her out as well, because it's so obvious that she's being a hypocritical douche.

In the end, Clarke decides not to be a hypocrite, and allows Emerson to live. Both Lexa and Clarke wish him a very long and miserable life.
Back in Arkadia, Jaha is expanding his army of nutso-burgers. Jasper is all ready to erase his misery, when Abby comes along and takes the pill. It's the first time I've agreed with Jasper in a really long time. If anyone should be taking the crazy pill, it's him.
Jaha explains how the pill enters the brain and removes pain. Amazingly, Jackson is on the nut pill and helping Jaha out with false results. But then Jaha makes a critical mistake. When Abby asks to check it out first because, you know, Jaha wouldn't dream of letting his son Wells try some freaky pill without knowing how it works, he doesn't seem to even remember Wells in the first place!
This makes sense, since the loss of his son was Jaha's largest source of pain, but it also causes Abby to shut down his whole operation.
To tie everything together, Raven reports that the code is not in the computer, but Jaha realizes that it must be in Polaris, the 13th station, which had been shot out of the sky early on. We then see that Polaris is in Polis, where Murphy has been captured, and is being tortured in secret by Titus for information about the symbol on the pill given to him by Jaha. Also, the "ar" is missing from the ship name so that it appears to say "Polis."