Friday, March 24, 2017

More Stuff I Watched

You know the drill:  I post about stuff I watched and everyone ignores it and I get lost of views from the bots.

Iron Fist:  Another of Marvel's Netflix series leading up to The Defenders, this is yet another story of a white male billionaire who loses his parents and becomes a superhero, just like Batman, Green Arrow, Iron Man, and probably a few others.  To mix cliches the rich white boy is taken in by monks who train him in kung fu.  It feels kind of like Arrow mixed with Daredevil.  "The Hand" and their leader, the evil Yoda-ish Madame Gao, were already featured in the first two seasons of Daredevil.  Now they're trying to flood New York with synthetic heroin and are using Danny Rand's company, which is run by his two childhood friends, a brother and sister who are an incestuous fling away from the Lannisters on Game of Thrones.  Danny makes friends with a martial arts teacher named Colleen Wing, who helps him find the Hand and stop them.  The flashbacks in Arrow became grating after a couple of seasons but some more flashbacks in this show would have helped understand K'un L'un, but I guess it saved them from building more sets.  If you can put aside the racial issues, it's a decent show. (3/5)  (Fun Fact:  Claire Temple, the Night Nurse, shows up again in this show along with the other three.  Carrie Anne Moss reprises her role as attorney Jeri Hogarth from Jessica Jones, but there aren't any gratuitous lesbian scenes this time around.  Still, except when Luke Cage first appeared in Jessica Jones, the four Defenders have had little contact with each other and I really have no idea what is going to bring them together.)

Transformers Prime:  This isn't a continuation of the Bay movies but characters like Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, and Megatron look like their movie counterparts for the most part.  For some reason Transformers is so much better on the small screen and in comics than in those live action movies.  Probably because the focus in shows and comics is on the robots, making them more like real characters.  Though there are humans too.  The Autobots have set up base in Jasper, Nevada and inadvertently take in three teenagers who become their buddies.  Like the old series, the Autobots care so much for humans and don't want to endanger them...yet continue to endanger these kids a bunch of times.  Anyway, I really liked this series.  Like the Beast Wars series from about 20 years ago it uses computer animation and has stories that are not so goofy only little kids could enjoy it.  In fact, the violence and some of the stories might be a little too much on the grown up side for younger kids.  Besides the 65 episodes of the series, there's a standalone movie "Rise of the Predacons" that are all available on Netflix. (4/5) (Fun Facts:  Regarding the voice work, Optimus Prime and Megatron have the same voice actors as the old 80s series.  The human Agent Fowler is voiced by Ernie Hudson of Ghostbusters and The Crow.  In the third series Ultra Magnus is voiced by Michael Ironside of V, SeaQuest 2032, etc.  Star Trek's George Takei guest starred as Alpha Trion in a couple of episodes.  The voice actors for Bulkhead and Knock Out also do voices on Fox/TBS's American Dad as Principal Lewis and Stan's father/Krampus respectively.  In the first episode Duane "The Rock" Johnson provides the voice of Cliffjumper, who is quickly killed off; when he's in a flashback in a later episode someone else does his voice.  At least in the first season the voice director was Susan Blu, who voiced Arcee in the original show and also worked on Beast Wars.)

Transformers Robots in Disguise:  This follow-up to Transformers Prime is traditionally animated and a lot more kid-friendly.  It was a chore for me to get through one episode.  Probably a lot better for the little ones.  I'll take a pass. (2/5)

Snatch:  This is a new series on Crackle that takes its cue from the Guy Ritchie movie at the turn of the century that starred Brad Pitt.  After they lose a bunch of money from a boxing match that went against them, three friends in London decide to rob a van filled with a strip club's cash on a tip from the strip club owner's girlfriend.  Except the truck they rob is an identical one that's full of gold.  From there they go through a lot of mishaps while trying to sell the gold and collect their windfall.  It's a decent show; like the movie it's violent, dramatic, and funny in equal measures with some twists and turns. (3/5)  (Fun Fact:  One of the three friends is played by Ron Weasley from the Harry Potter movies I never watched.  A corrupt cop is played by Marc Warren, who played psychotic assassin Teatime [pronounced tee-uh-time-ee] in the TV movie version of the Discworld novel Hogfather.  Dougray Scott playes the father of one of the friends; he also starred in the Drew Barrymore Cinderella story Ever After.)

The Young Pope:  This HBO series stars Jude Law as a "young" (as in 47) new Pope who is kind of an asshole.  It's pretty boring, though not quite as boring as Crackle's The Art of More.  What it really needed was for Jude Law to break the fourth wall like Kevin Spacey in House of Cards.  Otherwise it's just a dull slog. (1/5)

Pumaman:  Now that Netflix is rebooting Mystery Science Theater 3000, they have a smattering of the old episodes, including Pumaman.  This 70s superhero movie features cheesy effects, a lot of bad acting, and a soundtrack that sounds like the demo mode of a Casio keyboard.  A doofus scientist embraces his destiny as Pumaman who has the power to fly awkwardly and bop people on the head.  He might be the only superhero to wear khakis.  The villain is played by Halloween and You Only Live Twice's Donald Pleasance, who pronounces the hero's name "P-you-ma-man" not "Pooh-ma-man."  The MST3K gang makes this abysmal movie somewhat tolerable. (2/5)

Caught in the Crossfire:  Boring, cliche-filled cop drama.  The description said it was supposed to be in "suburban Detroit" but it was actually filmed in Grand Rapids.  I suppose to a lot of people a city 150 miles away would be a suburb of Detroit. (1/5)

All American Bikini Car Wash:  I guess you can say it delivers what it promises:  lots of cheesecake shots of girls in bikinis washing cars.  Even so it was pretty lame.  For extra credit a college kid takes over his professor's car wash and he and his lunkhead friend, with help from their nerdy black friend, decide to make it a bikini car wash and employ a lot of hot girls.  A lot of it seemed to be apologizing for the sex industry, like where a girl says they're not really being exploited because they decided to work there and it's good money and fun and they make a lot of friends. [eye roll]  The bad acting and lack of any tension in the plot would be more acceptable in a full-on porno instead of a soft core like this. (1/5)


  1. I liked the first Transformers and after that they all seemed to be missing something, except explosions and continual fighting. There is a thing as too much action. So it's good to know that there could be another good Transformers movie out there.

  2. started watching Iron Fist and it is so boring to me. It probably picks up but I'm just not interested in watching Arrow Lite right now.

    Pumaman (P-you-ma-man) is one of my all-time favorite MST3K episodes and I can't imagine watching it without the bots.

    Thanks for catching me up Pat!

  3. "Transformers Prime" is probably the best iteration of a Transformers series and definitely the best version since "Beast Wars". As much as I love G1, most of the characters really don't have much more than token personalities. "Prime" gives both sides actual characters with some development and personality; there's even one episode (maybe two?) that entirely focus on the Decepticons. This show has by far the best version of Starscream. Knock Out is really cool. Of course Optimus Prime is good, but Ratchet and Arcee are the best of the Autobots. Arcee isn't just a token fembot...she kicks ass.

    "Robots in Disguise" is a bit of an adjustment after "Prime". The last few episodes bring back Starscream, so that's pretty cool.

    You should probably not watch "Rescue Bots"...although I really like that's a smart show for kids and my girls love it.



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