Latest Reviews

The best way to describe this week's episode of Teen Wolf is underwhelming. It was entertaining enough as I was watching it but when the credits started rolling I found myself wondering what the point was. The performances were moving and the direction was solid but most of the story consisted of boring clichés that's sole purpose was to deliver exposition.

"Visionary" involves two of Teen Wolf's biggest bads reminiscing about an unknown period in the past (I say unknown because we have no idea when these events took place). There are two stories, one is about Derek's tragic first love and the other is the events that led up to big bad Alpha Deucalion's blinding. There are a couple very unsubtle hints to the season mystery but otherwise this episode was mostly filler.

I have to admit that I am not a fan of flashback episodes, they are generally lazy and very rarely add anything of substance to the actual story. And that's a pretty good description of this episode. My guess is they needed to give the lead actor's a bit of a break so they headed into the past for two of the most cliché origin stories ever.

Deucalion - who is this season's big bad - was just like Scott, idealistic and naive, until Gerard Argent betrayed and blinded him during a peace summit. Giving the villain and the hero similar beginnings is a staple of pretty much ever hero's journey. It's fairly predictable and doesn't really add much to Scott's character arc but it's not as bad as what they did to Derek.

Derek had a really interesting origin story. He's your classic anti-hero but his tragic back-story was essentially a rape narrative (whether you want to read it literally or metaphorically).  Presenting a classically masculine character as a rape survivor was one of the most interesting things
Teen Wolf has ever done. With this week's episode they pushed that aside to tack on the most cliché white hero origin story ever.

A jock jerk falls for the quirky outsider, she sees through his arrogant exterior but it all ends tragically when she dies in a way that is either directly or indirectly the jerk jocks fault. He then carries her death with him as the basis for his heroic manpain. If that sounds familiar that's because it is. That is the origin of pretty much every white male hero ever (occasionally it's his mother or his sister).

It doesn't matter whether this storyline has a greater significance, it's still awful and frankly I expected better from
Teen Wolf, although I don't know why. I'm starting to hope that all the people that have died for Derek's manpain band together in the afterlife to kill Derek so that no more innocent women and POC are harmed in the name of mangst.

Anyway, next week it's back to the actual story and again they promise answers, yeah I'll believe that when I see it.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.   

This week's episode had a lot of confusion and twists that I'm not sure the audience would really appreciate. With Burke now being gone, Michael is clinging to Sonya as his only chance of completing his mission and keeping his loved ones out of incarceration, and the CIA are following right in suit, doing anything neccessary by any means in order to keep the mission alive. This desparation leads the CIA to blackmailing Fiona into helping with the mission, as they cannot deny her skills. When Michael hears that Fi is being forced into this mission, he refuses to let it happen in a desparate attempt to keep his promise to her, however, the CIA couldn't really care less about his personal morals and override his decision.

This leads to Michael and Fi working as a team together back in Miami, which gives a sense of home to the audience. It begins to feel as though nothing has happened and everything is as it was between Michael and Fiona, however, Fiona constantly gives Michael very clear messages that the past is the past, and once she has dealt with it, she is gone. This constant reminder of Fi and Michael's failed relationship kills a little more hope of their revival within the audience, however, I for one know I am not giving up on them.

The storyline takes an unexpected turn as Sam, Jesse, Michael and Fi end up doing Sonya's dirty work. The job requires taking down some big time criminal hackers, which makes it seem right, like it is one of Michael's jobs he used to do as a favour for those in need, however, it is for Sonya's selfish reasons, who is a highly wanted criminal herself. 

As Fi is recently single, and she begins to work with Michael more closely, the audience are givin just a little hope for their relationship, however, (SPOILER!!) Michael finally cracks under the pressure of the sacrifices he has made in regards to his family and friends, and more specifically Fi, and sleeps with Sonya. The audience are never given a clear insight into his true motives, whether they be to advcance in the mission, or due to his own desires, but we are definately given a rare glimpse into Michael's introvert self, that is, his feelings, desires and regrets.

This portrayal of Michael deepens his character and thus the audience's connection with him, however I'm not so sure the path to this insight will be favoured.

Review by Emma Laarkamp

Last week, Hanna was caught in the act of attempting to bury a gun found in Ashley’s wardrobe. Now Hanna is under investigation with the police and has drawn more attention towards her family. Got to feel bad for Hanna, the girl tries to fix problems but A is always waiting with something worse in mind. Ashley is on edge with the investigation because they have not heard anything and Hanna attempts to process her father’s sudden involvement in their lives once again. Unfortunately, the Marins will definitely need a lawyer after Ashley is arrested for the murder of detective Wilden.

Mona is back and outs Spencer for lying to the rest of the girls about the RV (that Toby traded for info). Naturally, Spencer and Toby find themselves in a mysterious town called Ravenswood to look for Grunwald (the old sorority House mother) who Spencer believes use to call ‘A’ and we get the first introduction to the PLL spinoff series. The place is completely creepy and the townspeople definitely are hiding some huge secrets. The only thing that came of the time spent with Toby and Spencer was keeping the secret search for answers of his mum are coming between the girls.

Emily fell for A’s tricks and now she is also on Tanner’s radar after leaving a DVD (of Jenna and Sharna with Wilden). Little did Emily know is A had switched the DVD with a new one and to Em’s horror ‘A’ is the footage wearing a mask with Emily’s face hold a sign that says ‘Guilty’.

Aria helps the jerk Connor with an English essay, only to have it back fire and is instead slut-shamed at school by him. Even Mike believed the rumour about his sister and was quick to judge her as usual. As strong as Aria’s character is, you get to see her hurt and Ezra who should just leave the girl alone, came to comfort her only to be rejected. Mike actually turns around and apologizes. Although, in a misguided attempt to stand up for his sister, Mike smashes Connor’s car and runs off.

On a side note, Sharna has become a student at Rosewood High and replaces Emily on the swim team. Sharna seems to be everywhere this week at the coffee shop, school and even Ravenswood. Is she helping ‘A’ or got her own plans?

Review by Jessica Tisdell

It actually hurts me to say that this episode was not great. I could just be that the last couple of episodes raised the bar too high but that would just be making excuses and that doesn’t help anyone. We have pasted the halfway point for this storyline and I am starting to worry that Teen Wolf might have bitten off more than it can handle.

The dark druid is after healers this week so it’s bad luck for the doctors of Beacon Hills, including Scott’s mysterious boss, Alan Deaton. While Scott searches for Deaton, Boyd comes up with a (completely ridiculous) plan to stop alpha Kali from killing Derek and for some reason Cora ends up hanging out with Lydia and Stiles. In the end everyone fails. The Sheriff saves Deaton (with some help from Melissa McCall), Lydia’s powers don’t work and Derek is forced to kill Boyd.

This week Teen Wolf threatened a major character death and it delivered, kind of. They certainly killed a character, but whether he was major is debatable. Vernon Boyd (Sinqua Walls) didn’t get much development beyond being the third member of Derek’s pack and in the end his death didn’t really add much to the overarching narrative and as a result fell flat.

The actual death itself was emotional enough but because there was no build up after the initial impact it almost felt cheep. To their credit, Tyler Hoechlin and Sinqua Walls acted the hell out of the scene but not even great performances could save this episode. The logic that led up to Boyd’s death was inherently flawed and at this point Derek’s manpain has reached a point of diminishing returns. His life sucks, we get it. It really doesn’t get much worst that having his family burn to death in a fire that he believes was his fault. Everything after that is superfluous.

Very little about this season has made much sense so far but in episodes like “Frayed” (305) and “Motel California” (306) that general sense of confusion and mistrust worked to an advantage. But as of “Currents” the mystery has reached the point where we need proof that this story is actually heading somewhere worthwhile. I can no longer tell the difference between intentional confusion and bad writing and if I don’t get something soon I’m going to lose interest.

Luckily next week is the episode that many fans have been waiting for since it was announce. It’s the flashback episode. While I’m not a fan of flashbacks generally, I am a fan of the answers they can provide. Hopefully “Visionary” will give us enough answers to make me want to keep watching (I’m going to watch it regardless but the longer it takes to get a hint of explanation the more resentful I will become). Just please tell me you have a plan Teen Wolf.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

Following the last few episode that have lacked the action and excitement until usually around 35 minutes in. Don't get me wrong, Pretty Little Liars is a great show but the endless mysteries and new evidence is gettign frustating.
This week Hanna is still convinced Ashley killed Wilden especially when she goes snooping her mother's locked closet only to find a gun that could possibly be the murder weapon. Hanna reaches out to her friends to help her but of course they are busy trying to solve the whole A thing and Hanna takes matters into her own hands. Unfortunately, Spencer and Emily get there at the last minute before they could prevent Hanna's completely blonde moment that has resulted in her arrest.
Whilst this was all going on, Spencer and Emily work on getting into collage. They visit Cicero College but Spencer spends majority of her mocking the place. Emily on the hand, is desperate to get into college after injuring herself couple weeks ago and has screwed up her chances for Standfors. Em instead flirts a little too much (ahh... did anyone else forget she was gay?) and Spencer is playing Nancy Drew. She ends up discovering the phone in a sorority connected to the number the bird was repeating. Best scene is probably when Spencer approaches a geek on campus and makes Game Of Thrones references to try to relate him.
Aria is determined to get her mother to still go away but Mike convinces Ella to stay. Yes thats right, Mike is finally back. Where has he been all this time? Is Aria's little borther also part of the A team?
Just to quote 'A'-"Looks Like Hanna and Mother could share a lawyer now."
Review by Jessica Tisdell

This week’s episode was very much welcomed after a week of absence. All of the explosions and cunning really felt like home. This, combined with the recruitment of Fi, makes the show even more familiar and gives you the feeling it will never end.

This episode centres around a new Russian woman, Sonya, who rivals the wit and cunning of Michael himself. When you add this to the viciously clever policewoman who is after Sonya, Michael certainly has his work cut out for him, but once again, he succeeds in the seemingly impossible task of smuggling Sonya past the entire Russian and Columbian police force, slipping out right under their noses. 

Sam and Jesse are again involved, and although Burke is now gone, their mission continues. Their teamwork and friendship really shine through in this episode, as all of their lives depend on each of them working perfectly together and reading each other. 

Fi is recruited against her will, so even though she is mad about it, it looks like her contact with Michael is going to become a whole lot more frequent, as Michael’s mission takes him back to Miami (yay!). There is a little conflict in what seems right for Fi, as Carlos lets her go lovingly, however, I think everyone would agree with me in saying, it doesn’t matter how nice the guy is, he isn’t Michael.

This episode held true to the brilliant show we have all come to know and love, with big unnecessary explosions, cleverness and lots of deception, and ended with the excellent promise of the return of the old team back together, blowing up things in Miami.

Review by Emma Laarkamp

Last week I claimed that “Frayed” was the best Teen Wolf episode ever it seems I spoke too soon because this episode might have been even better, it was certainly more traumatizing. Not that I’m complaining, I want Teen Wolf to keep getting better and for a dramatic television show causing your audience emotional trauma is basically the goal.

After the meet is postponed the cross-country team, as well as Allison and Lydia, are forced to spend the night in a motel that looks at though it belongs in a CSI cold-open. It turns out about as well as you might expect. The werewolves, Scott, Isaac, Boyd and Ethan all suffer from hallucinations that drive them to attempt suicide. It’s left up to Lydia, Allison and Stiles to save the day. Meanwhile Derek gets a little sexual healing from Beacon Hills High’s new English teacher, Jennifer Blake.

There were two seemingly unconnected storylines in this episode. The first was The Shinning-esque horror plot at the suicide hotel and the second was Derek’s recovery process and romantic interlude. I say seemingly unconnected because there is more than likely a very significant reason that these storylines were placed side-by-side but as it stands, with the information we have now, the shift in tone was jarring at times. That said it was nice to see a softer, not to mention sexier, side to everyone’s favourite brooding alpha Derek Hale.

While there were a number of exceptional performances in this episode, it was Tyler Posey (who plays the teen wolf himself, Scott McCall) that stole the show for me. His emotional breakdown, and the beautiful broment between Scott and Stiles, had me in a puddle of tears for far longer than I should probably admit. The powerful moment is also a perfect example of the jarring cuts between the murder motel and Derek’s loft. As a said above, I’m sure there is greater purpose for this but sometimes it’s better to stay in the moment and leave the significant edits for another time.

The other fantastic thing about this episode is that the female characters were in charge of driving the plot forward. Lydia, Allison and even Jennifer were all in the position of power throughout the story. The men had things happen to them, the women actually did things, which is a fabulous reversal of gendered expectations of narrative agency. I also have to give them kudos for a make-out scene between two male characters. I complain about the soap opera dramatics and excessive slow motion but Teen Wolf actually does some seriously cool stuff.

I think it’s pretty safe to say that I enjoyed this episode, if you can call crippling emotional distress enjoying, which I do. Anyway if things are heading the way I think they are this season is going to be amazing and I can’t wait to watch it happen.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

This week’s episode called ‘Face Time’ saw the return of Emily’s father who was called home after Family Services were notified of Emily’s bruises.

Where ever A is, she must really be enjoying the drama. Emily’s family is becoming the centre of attention throughout the town for their new reputation as the dysfunctional family. Unfortunately, for Emily even though she protests that her parents are not hurting her, A seems to be one step ahead.

As for the Hastings family, Spencer announced that she didn’t get accepted into UPenn but Melissa (the so called perfect daughter) has offered to help her sister out. For ages now, we have questioned whether Melissa was involved with A and to what extent. When the girls discovered the mould of Melissa’s face last week, it was just more proof that she was connected. To test this theory, Spencer and Aria decide to return the mould to Melissa in her suitcase and watch for her reaction from an outside window. Just as they expected, Melissa was smart and knew she would lead them to some answers.

Later, Aria and Spencer watch as Melissa retrieves a sack filled with copies of her face moulds and begins destroying them. Spencer approaches her sister and Melissa shares must needed information. According to the frustrated Melissa, she has been involved in past ‘A’ activities to protect Spencer and detective Wilden was the one who started the fire in the lodge. At least we now know Melissa and Wilden were both on the Halloween train but working for different people? They didn’t even know about Mona being there.

You would think the girls would have learnt by now not to lie but no. Spencer is still withholding the fact that Toby was the one who moved Mona’s “lair” and is secretly on the hunt for information on his mother’s death. Toby is lead to a Doctor Palmer who was the doctor who worked with Ms Cavanaugh the day she died but the Doctor’s memory is sketchy. However, he mentions a blonde girl who used to visit. Was it Alison?

Aria finally tells Jake the truth about her last relationship (with Ezra) and claims it’s over. Jake on the other hand, doesn’t believe the Aria and Ezra story is over just yet. “You have to figure out if you’re hurt or injured,” he says.

Wilden’s safe deposit box at the bank is opened and inside is thousands of dollars. Not to mention a gun and passports. “Normal people don’t keep that stuff in safe deposit do they?” she asks the detective. Hanna is determined to keep her mother from going to jail but the conversation backfires. Instead, Hanna’s so-called investigation has created more suspicion towards her family, especially for Ashley.

On a side note, Emily’s swimming carer could be possibly over depending on whether she has to get surgery for her shoulder injury. What happens to the whole Stanford dream?

The episode ends with Hanna expressing her biggest fear… “I think my mum killed Wilden and A knows it.” Personally, I think Ashley is not the killer because it’s way too obvious. What do you guys think?

Review by Jessica Tisdell

After a long season 5 of craziness surrounding the Lilith storyline which I found to be less intriguing compared to past seasons. The whole Lilith scenario is beginning to pay off as Bill 2.0 has changed the rules and has made it his mission to save vampires (especially Jessica) from the humans.

This week Bill is feeling a lot more motivated and has teamed up with Jessica to capture a professor that has the skill to synthesise Sookie’s faerie blood for the vampires. Jessica was sent to attend a class and to seduce the professor. Jessica turns up in a hot school girl-like outfit the poor guy didn’t stand a chance. The next step was for Bill to convince Sookie to help him by donating blood but despite their past. A lot has changed and Sookie does not want to go with him. Plates are thrown and Bill uses his new super powers but she still refuses. Then Bill says “You are dead to me Sookie Stackhouse”. It looks like Bill and Sookie will not be getting back together anytime soon.

As for Sookie’s own storyline, she has been bonding with Jason and preparing for Warlow to come for her. I have a strange feeling that Warlow may be closer than we think and he is hovering in the bushes waiting at night. The Faerie godfather chases after the vampire but loses him due to his swift movement. The godfather wonders out to search for Warlow only to find the damage the vamp has already caused including a massacre of all the fareies at the secret nightclub (where they had been hiding). Ben who came into the picture last week has crossed paths with the godfather and agrees to help protect Sookie from Warlow to thank her for her the kindness.

Eric has a change of plans instead of killing the Governor’s daughter Willa (played by Amelia Rose Blaire); he instead holds her as a hostage to gain all the information he can around his enemy. Pam doesn’t think it’s the best idea and would prefer to kill Willa. As Fangtasia is no longer in Eric’s possession, the group (Pam, Eric and Tara) have to leave and take any that holds value to them. Eric takes a little pause to take a last look at his throne whilst I had my own nostalgic moment of remembering the first time his character was introduced. They take refuge in Ginger’s house to sleep during the day and Willa shares a coffin with Eric. Although, for a girl who has just been taken by vampires she seems to be a little too enthusiastic. Later the Governor calls Eric and traces their whereabouts but Eric is smart and leaves straight after.

The Wolves are struggling to stay under the radar as more people are slowly becoming aware of their existence. Not to mention, the police are on to them about Emma’s disappearance. Alcide as a character is becoming far less appealing due to his behaviour lately (helping kidnap Emma from Sam, who supposedly was a friend). Alcide is supposed to be likeable! The Vampire unity society has introduced us to the character Nicole wright who is the co-founder of the society and wants to help all the supernatural creatures basically live in peace with each other. Nicole visits the Alcide’s wolf pack with other members of the society to talk to them but when a camera is discovered recording, all hell breaks loose. The wolves turn, attacking them and the only one to escape is Nicole. That we know of anyway. While this is all going on, Sam who was the owl watching over, transforms into his human form and saves Emma from them.

On a sidenote, Andy Bellefleur is struggling with parenthood as his four girls are growing at a rapid rate over only a few days or so. Andy has turned on the charm to help teach Holly some shooting so she can protect her boys from the vampires at night. It must be a pretty messed up town now that Andy has the most normal life at the moment.

Can’t wait for next week, hopefully we finally get to see Warlow’s face and the question on my mind is: Will Eric fulfil Willa’s vampire fantasy that obviously she seems to have? It’s about time we see some True Blood nudity and maybe a couple that we can root for.

Review by Jessica Tisdell

I’m probably going to regret saying this but I’m pretty sure “Frayed” was the best episode of Teen Wolf ever. Considering the episode was almost all flashbacks that is a big deal because I am really not a fan of flashbacks (I think they’re often lazy and very rarely done well). As a warning this review is going to be obnoxiously positive but I am just so excited that after a few false starts Teen Wolf Season 3 is finally starting to live up to my expectations.

Scott and Stiles are on the bus heading to an out of town cross-country meet. Scott was injured in a terrible confrontation that happened the night before. He’s not healing and that’s not all, he believes that Derek is dead. As the episode progresses the events leading up to “Derek’s death” are revealed through a series of flashbacks.

Logically I knew that Derek wasn’t going to die. Tyler Hoechlin in the opening credits, and the synopsis for future episodes show that Derek is around for a while yet. But the part of my brain that enjoys Teen Wolf isn’t all that logical so there were a few brief moments when I started to wonder if maybe this was the end for my favourite brooding alpha. It wasn’t but it is a testament to this episodes excellence that there was a moment that I thought Derek might actually be dead.
Tucked between the emotional trauma were some of the funniest moments of the season. Coach Bobby Finstock (Orny Adams) is always a wonderful addition to any episode and he had some fantastic lines this week, especially his hilarious interactions with Stiles (Dylan O’Brien). The star of the episode though was without a doubt Crystal Reed who acted the hell out of Allison’s stress induced emotional breakdown.

The time shifting format could have been incredibly confusing but the use of colour, lighting and music made it reasonably easy to follow. It also added to the overarching feeling that nothing is as it seems. It’s pretty clear that the audience is missing some vital clue that will help decode the increasing web of mysteries threaded through this season. The answer is there we just don’t know how to find it yet. I’m not sure yet who is behind the mysterious happenings in Beacon Hills but I know enough not to trust anything or anyone.

Words can’t really do this episode justice because much of what was great about it is indescribable. All I can say is that I was literally on the edge of my seat the entire time (I almost fell off at one point). Before this season began I said that it looked like Teen Wolf had finally grown up, well with “Frayed” it proved me right.

Next week promises to be an emotional rollercoaster sending us swinging from slight arousal to debilitating despair. Bring it on.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

This week's episode was once again, of course, brilliant. The introduction of a new character, and the death of an old one, causes the mystery to deepen, while Sam and Jesse are still wrapped up in Michael's CIA undercover mission and Fiona again feels compelled to help Michael. The episode focuses around a kidnapping in Miami, and the escaping of a woman from a kidnapping in Cuba.
Throughout this episode, viewers begin to see this cover that Michael has taken on envelop him even further, and we are left wondering if the old Michael really still exists as he points a gun at a sleeping child. This change in Michael this season is unsettling and does not sit well, however, that seems to be the aim of this season. Michael's quick wit however continues to be everyone's saving grace as Michael, as always, takes one for the team and endures torture to keep the others safe.
This idea of selflessness is better used to describe Burke, oddly enough. Throughout this episode, viewers are shown a different side of this criminal that causes us to almost feel sorry for and admire him. His love for the people around him, including Michael, is brought out through one very courageous and selfless act.
When Fiona gets a call from Michael for help, she can't help but become involved, and even she doesn't know why. She hides her involvement from her boyfriend Carlos, and instead enlists the help of Maddie yet again. Maddie is getting a taste for the spy life, as a natural talent for this line of work shines through whilst she is helping Fiona kidnap a Russian man.
With the death of one character comes the introduction of another, however, a very brief introduction before she manages to slip through the cracks, with the episode ending upon yet another great mystery.
Review by Emma Laarkamp

Melissa is back and the girls have found a mask with Alison’s face on it. The mask leads Hanna, Emily and Aria to a cabin where a strange man creates props for horror films. He explains that Aly wanted to make masks for all of her friends but no one had ever received one.

Caleb finally makes his first appearance for Pretty Little Liars season 4 this week. Concerned for Hanna, he visits Mr Marin (her father) to ask him to support Hanna with the Wilden ‘situation’. Mr Marin shares with Caleb that he was visited by Ashley on the day and coincidently, his gun has gone missing.

A is slowly pushing each girl’s family to the edge by targeting their mothers instead. Emily’s mother, Pam had family services called on her due to a little incident she had with Emily in front of the high school. Not to mention, Emily’s injuries are severely suss and it had the doctor asking a lot more questions about Emily’s life.

Ashley is still behaving weird and omitting the truth, she lied about not attending a show in New York with her colleagues. To Hanna’s dismay she also discovers a map of everyone who is connected to Wilden in the police office which included lines drawn to her friends and mother.

A sends a text to Aria saying “Cleaning up Rosewood, one mean mommy at a time. Dig we must.” As a result of all the drama lately and A targeting their mothers. Aria decides to encourage her own mother Ella (played by Holly Marie Combs) to take a holiday with the guy she has been dating.

As for Toby and Spencer they have been playing detective to figure out what really happened to Toby’s mother the day she died and by visiting Radley. The files about Toby’s mother and the window made the pair suspicious of whether it was a suicide or not.

The girls manage to find a mask with Melissa’s face which is just more evidence proving that she is very much involved. Besides that, this week’s episode was not overly exciting but I guess its slowly building the drama for something tragic occur once again. Toby says A preys on you when you’re at your weakest. What do you think A will do next?

Review by Jessica Tisdell

Last week I was pretty unapologetic in my disappointment but I’m excited to say that this week Teen Wolf is back on track. “Unleashed” was a fun and enjoyable episode that reminded me of all the things that made me fall in love with this show in the first place.

This week on Teen Wolf, Stiles is on a mission to prove his theory about the virgin sacrifices and gains a little help along the way from Lydia and the mysterious town vet, Dr Deaton. Isaac, Allison and Scott team up against the alpha twins and Derek gets a visit from Deucalion, it’s not exactly a pleasant experience.

While it wasn’t my favourite episode it was so much better than last week that I can’t bring myself to care, besides there was a lot to love. We finally got some character development for the alpha twins, Ethan and Aiden, who have up until now been walking gimmicks. The interaction between Derek and Jennifer Blake, which felt forced in the previous episode, was actually kind of sweet. And the developing relationship between Allison and Isaac is only getting more and more intriguing.


There was still an excessive use of slow motion in the fight scenes, it’s like they have a new toy and they don’t know when to put it down, but as it was accompanied by an interesting storyline it didn’t bother me as much. I always love the classic horror homages, like the cold-open death, and Deucalion’s over the top villain’s speech was just kitsch enough to be fun.

The introduction of Druid and Celtic mythology broadens the scope of this series significantly. It also asks an intriguing question, who is this mysterious bad guy giving Druids a bad name and what is their connection to Lydia? All kinds of theories are speculating already, popular picks include Sassy Uncle Peter Hale and Gerard “MOUTIAN ASH” Argent. But the truth is at the moment it’s anyone’s game.

I am still rather disappointed by the treatment of Erica’s death (and Boyd’s trauma). I’m not the only one hoping for a little bit of closure but as the season is progressing at breakneck speed that much needed closure looking less and less likely. Then there’s the small issue of the increasing number of plot holes that I’m desperately hoping are actually part of a magnificent master plan but maybe I am expecting too much from this silly little MTV show about werewolves.

All in all this was an entertaining episode that perfect-showcased Teen Wolf’s ability to mesh the superficial teen years with seriously traumatic adult issues like PSD. As long as the rest of the rest season has more of that and less menacing growling I’ll be happy.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.   

This week's episode certainly didn't disappoint, with all the action and suspense of an end-of-season cliffhanger. We are only three episodes into this final season, and already another complex, mystifying and suspenseful plot line beginning to unfold.

Sam and Jesse are incorporated into the CIA mission that Michael is working on in the Dominican Republic, and the audience are, I'm sure, welcoming this renewal of the kick-ass trio that is Michael, Sam and Jesse. This resurrecting of the trio however leads to Micheal pulling the guys into his problems, problems which results in moral conflict, particularly for Sam, as he chooses what is more important - his best friend, or innocent bystanders. There is, however, the gaping absence of Fi that feels like the elephant in the room as she is never mentioned, although, there hasn't yet been the need for a huge, spontaneous supply of C4.

Fi is still a big part of Maddie's life however, and when Maddie calls with trouble from Nate's old 'bookie', Fi resolves the problem in the way only she knows best - a big explosion. There is an all time first for Fi however as she lets Maddie press the button, which results in a priceless look of satisfaction plastered all over Maddie's face.

When Michael is again in a sticky situation (when is he ever not, right?), he uses that good old cunning and connection with his friends that makes everyone laugh and admire him at the same time. There is however the revealing of yet another mystery, but not the mystery itself, just the fact that there is one. This leads to one hell of a cliffhanger that leaves you wanting so much more.

All in all, this episode starts to feel like the good old days of the earlier seasons, with the more prominent roles of Sam and Jesse, and the absence of Michael's facial hair. There is however the missing of Fi, as well as the Miami landscape, and the lack of small subplots that used to be in each episode - Michael is no longer helping people, and in fact, does more killing than helping, which we all know is not Michael Weston's style at all. The reason for this however, is revealed in this episode.

Review by Emma Laarkamp

The girls of Pretty Little Liars still have many questions. Why was Hannah’s mother’s (Ashley) phone in Wilden’s casket? Where has Melissa been all this time?

Mona is still trying to win the girls trust but as Aria says “This is Mona; she started lying when she was a foetus”. Mona takes them to the RV only to find its missing…of course. The other former member of the A team Toby is struggling to stay honest as well as A taps into one of his major weaknesses his mother. To find answers Toby has yet again been doing favours for A and although, we are supposed to have empathy for the poor guy, its hard to trust him.

Hannah is conflicted after she discovers her mother’s expensive heels covered in mud. While the police have come out with the news that murderer was wearing heels. Is murderer Ashley or red coat?

Spencer has finally received news from the University of Pennsylvania, a place she has been dreaming of attending as part of her family tradition but is not accepted. She reaches out to Ezra who offers to help Spencer write some essays and apply for other places. However, with A on the loose she is making it incredibly hard for any of the girls to build a future.

On a positive note, we are finally seeing Aria move on from Ezra. After Mona is attacked, Aria feels its about time she learnt to defend herself since she is a small girl after all. The audience is introduced to a possible love interest the attractive fighting instructor Jake played by Keven Santos. As Aria practices with Jake you can clearly see the chemistry and Aria impulsively kisses him during a session. Awkward! Jake later informs Aria he is interested but will there a future for them?

One of the minor developments of the storyline was the talking bird Tippy. According to Spencer the repetition of sounds Tippy was making was a phone number, possibly one Alison called often. This episode was not the most exciting moment of the season but these events are leading into some serious drama. Next week we will see the return of Melissa and more details on Ashley’s involvement in Wilden’s death may just be revealed.

Review by Jessica Tisdell


Last week’s episode was really good, like exceptionally good. Maybe my hopes were a little high but this week just didn’t quite make it. Don’t get me wrong, this episode wasn’t awful, it just wasn’t great and after last week’s offering it was sorely disappointing. That said there were some great moments hidden in what was a rather lacklustre effort as a whole.

Derek and Scott enlist some unlikely help to find Boyd and Cora who are still at the mercy of the full moon. Lydia and Stiles investigate a series of disturbing murders and Allison takes matters into her own hands. This episode is mostly snarling and running through the woods with a little bit of gore and a dash of harlequin romance.

Teen Wolf doesn’t really have filler episodes, but if it did this would be it. The search for Boyd and Cora could, and probably should, have been completed in half the time. While the secondary storyline of revealed significant information that furthers the overarching season mystery, the majority of the episode was spent watching the werewolves run through the woods in slow motion.

Speaking of slow motion, the director of this episode obviously had a fetish for attractive men in walking slow motion. Now, I’m partial to the occasional use of slow motion, especially on attractive men, but there comes a point when it’s time to speed things up and give us something relevant. When they were walking in slow motion they were performing excessive and unnecessary acrobatics. There is just so much that could have cut from this episode.

If you ignore the running and growling there were a few things that stood out in this episode. The classic horror elements, including a camping trip gone wrong and a surprise dead body, were really well done. I’m actually loving Teen Wolf’s use of classic horror tropes this season. Dylan O’Brien was exceptional as always, especially in a particularly poignant emotional scene.

Although the female characters were relegated to the background they outshone the testosterone filled hunting party. Especially Allison, who managed to achieve by herself, what Derek, Scott, Isaac and Chris had been unable to achieve as a team. The one highlight of the hunting storyline was Derek’s slow decent into despair, as he loses the last vestiges to his self-esteem but even that was undermined when he was gifted a romantic reward for his sacrifice.

Ms Blake (Haley Webb) was introduced in the first episode of season 3, and while we didn’t learn much about her she appeared capable and intriguing. In this episode most of what made her intriguing was ripped away from her so that she could be forced into the role of damsel in distress in preparation for meeting Derek Hale. While this episode didn’t introduce Ms Blake’s storyline particularly well, I am hoping that behind the romantic damsel is a dynamic character with a storyline of her very own as more than just Derek’s ‘love interest’.

It’s safe to say, that this episode was a bit of a let down but hopefully it will be the exception in an otherwise amazing season.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

Okay, I’ll admit it. The premiere had me a little worried. It was good but it was as good as it needed to be to live up to the hype. This episode alleviated most of my fears and I now completely on board with Season 3. This was a fantastic episode that had me on the edge of my seat screaming at the screen for forty minutes.

Stiles went to a party to get laid; it didn’t end well. Scott tried to get Allison and Derek to work together; it didn’t end well. Derek and Isaac are tried to find Boyd and Erica; it didn’t end well. Lydia and Danny are trying to get laid… it’s going well. Uncle Peter is still sassy with dubious intentions. Stiles has research fever and enjoys a good fisting (that might be an exaggeration). Also Derek had a blast from the past that could be a game changer.

There is so much to love about this episode but what stood out for me are the interactions between Derek Hale (Tyler Hoechlin) and Allison Argent (Crystal Reed). Those two have a complicated past and I hoped that when they finally got to talking that it would be fantastic and it was even better than I could have imagined. All I wish is for more of this dynamic in future episodes.

The other thing this episode showcased was the incredible cinematography. Last week I suggested that this was Teen Wolf all grown up and the look of this episode proved that sentiment. There was a scene between fan favourites Peter Hale (Ian Bohen) and Stiles Stilinski (Dylan O’Brien) that was truly beautiful with an innovative use of light and shadow. For a moment it made me forget I was watching an MTV show about teenage werewolves.

The performances were solid as usual, especially the wonderful Dylan O’Brien, who as usual added remarkable depth to comic sidekick Stiles. I was also surprisingly impressed with Tyler Hoechlin, who let’s face it is known more for his abs than his acting talent, but somehow managed to break my heart with just one word: “Cora”.

Some might be annoyed by the amount of what could be called fan service but the episode flowed really well and every scene appeared as though it had a place. While there were some fun fan winks nothing felt superfluous. There was not a moment to waste, there was a lot of information packed into just forty minutes, and for me at least nothing felt wasteful.

Part of me feels like I’m being far too unashamedly positive but then I watch this episode again and I’m reminded of just how entertaining it really is. This is the Teen Wolf I want see in Season 3 and I hope that it’s onwards and upwards from here. If the next ten episodes are half as good as “Chaos Rising” this will be the best season yet.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

Beginning straight from where Pretty Little Liars left off last season, Hanna, Aria, Spencer, Emily and Mona open Wildon’s car boot, only to find a dead pig? What was that supposed to mean? The only thing we know for sure is A is back and more manipulative than ever before.

Mona helps out Hanna by tampering with evidence to save Hannah’s mother and later hands over the memory chip with the footage. What is this girl’s angle?

Mona also spilled some goss on her secret life as a minion for A, like how she made Lucas and Toby do some of her dirty work for her. Mona was the one who placed Wilden’s car in Hannah’s garage, Shanna is in love with Jenna and they both are afraid of Melissa. For some time, Mona assumed Cece was red coat/Alison and she didn’t kill Ian. Not to mention, Mona takes the girls to her “lair” to gain their trust.

Strangely, Alison’s mother has returned to Rosewood and is moving back into her old house. In one particular scene, Spencer stares out the window only to realize Alison’s mother staring back from her own window. Ahh creepy much?

At school the vice Principal has been keeping a close eye on Aria since she claimed nothing was going on between her and Ezra. Aria is called to the vice Principal’s office and she panics. Luckily, everything was just in Aria’s head.

Paige proposes to Emily that they move away together to California and attend Standford University. Hesitant at first to move across the country, Emily accepts. While on another note, Toby is being caught in a new game with A to find out answers about his mother and a flashback is shown of Toby with Alison which shows they had a “thing”.

In true Pretty Little Liars fashion, the writers have the girls attending another funeral and their mission is to find Wildon’s body because something is in the casket. Spencer and Mona are sent the same message which leads them to the body and a phone rings from inside the casket.

Its also important to mention there was a mysterious woman with a black veil who attended the funeral and later is seen with a mask on playing with dolls that represent each girl. Was the woman with veil the new A?

With such a long wait, it was good to see PLL fans get some answers but at the same time, there are so many more questions.

Review by Jessica Tisdell

Burn Notice, Season 7, kicked off with all of the excitement and action that has characterised this show since its beginning in 2007. Although there are a few noticeable changes, with the absence of the well-known, burn-notice-style captions and the extreme close ups on shirtless men rather than bikini clad women (don’t worry guys, they are still there too), the basic essence of the show still holds true. 

Viewers are shown a much different, darker side to Michael Weston. The show continues on nine months after the season finale, and Michael Weston has taken his ‘deep cover’ to a whole new level. Viewers are confronted with an alcoholic, disgruntled ex-spy who is based in Columbia and fighting to make a living. This, of course, is all a part of a government program which puts Michael in constant, serious danger. This cover has changed him though, with the merciful Michael Weston that we all know killing two people in the first episode. However, this exciting start to the show is not only set in Columbia. The tension is also felt back in Miami, with all of the characters we have come to know and love once again risking their lives to protect Michael. 

Once Sam gets wind of Michael, and the fact that he is in danger, he will stop at nothing to find his friend. This commitment however, almost gets Sam and Jesse blown up half way through the first episode of the season. The audience experiences a devastating blow in the first ten minutes as Fi kisses another guy, implying a long-term boyfriend. Despite this, she is just as fiery and loyal as always, and commits herself to protecting Madeline, who accidently secures Michael’s dangerous fate.

Madeline herself is fighting to get custody of little Charlie Weston (Nate’s son) and the audience is reminded of that gut-wrenching moment when Nate died in Michael’s arms. But don’t worry, it isn’t all sad and dark, there is still an impressive Hollywood explosion and the opportunity to see Michael with a beard. 

Overall, this has been an impressive start to great show…it makes you wonder how it ever got cancelled.

Review by Emma Laarkamp
It’s back and it’s bigger and badder than ever. It’s been a long hiatus since Teen Wolf’s fantastic second season but it has finally come blasting back into our lives with an amazing season premiere.

The opening sequence, involving a mysterious girl and a motorcycle chase, represents everything that was right and wrong with this episode. It’s pretty clear they’re aiming for epic and while it doesn’t quite make it, they just don’t have the budget to pull off big CGI based stunts, it sets the tone for a season that is quite clearly going where Teen Wolf has never gone before.

Once it moved into more familiar territory, especially the turbulence of teenage romance, the episode really came into its own. Scott was more lovable than ever, which I didn’t think was possible, and it was nice to see Stiles back in his role as comic relief. Especially after the dramatic turn his character took towards the end on Season 2, although I doubt that the fun times will last much longer.

Without a doubt the star of the episode was Holland Roden as Lydia Martin. Lydia had a rough ride throughout the first two seasons and while she had some awesome moments she was often relegated to damsel in distress or romantic reward. It was nice to see a more confident Lydia, one that wasn’t defined by her interactions with the male leads. Roden stole every scene she was in and I can’t wait to see where they take her character this season.

The episode was a little hard to follow at times due to the amount of information they had to give us but over all I think it was a solid start to the season. There is clearly a lot going on, including a lot of new characters, but it was nice that despite a couple of moments the majority of the episode focused on Scott, Allison, Stiles, Lydia and Derek. It was especially great to see Scott and Derek working so well together.

Despite the tagline’s warning that “this might hurt” this episode was relatively pain free but the mysteries introduced were intriguing, and Deucalion seems like he will make a delicious villain. I wasn’t keen on the implication that Scott is the hero of a prophecy driven adventure (one werewolf to save them all) but as Teen Wolf has a tendency to take tired tropes to unexpected places I am going to give it the benefit of the doubt for the moment.

Although not without it’s problems, “Tattoo” was a great introduction to what looks like an exciting season but only time will tell if the many, many mysteries this episode set up are able to fulfill their potential.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

It is the start of the grand celebrations in Rome and for once Rodrigo Pope Alexander is seen to be doing Pope-ey stuff! He appears solemn and dressed in all the finery and grandeur you would expect of a Renaissance Pope. The crowd looks on while he addresses the people of Rome and opens his doors and offers forgiveness at a price. The sweet sound of jewels and coins for sins paid for fill the Papal House and the wealth amassed is plenty.

One lady is not celebrating, and that is Catarina Sforza. Benito’s body is returned to her and she is full of hate and hell bent on revenge at the loss of her only son. She wants the Borgia’s wiped out and will not stop until she gets her way starting by diverting the flood of Pilgrims to Rome by claiming to have the shroud of turin. However, the Borgia’s will not stand quietly and Cesare is dispatched to exterminate her and collect the shroud for authenticity back at the Vatican.

Meanwhile I cannot help but feel sorry for the cold blooded psychopath Micheletto. He thinks he has found love but all he has done is let a spy into the Borgia household. What fate will behold him and his lover when the web of lies comes undone?

Episode 8 cannot come soon enough as we head towards the final few episodes. The momentum is building nicely and that will be a grand finale no doubt.

Review by JoAnn Duff

More of JoAnn's works can be found at her blog.

Episode seven is about unions. Bad ones, passionate ones, religious ones, tangled ones and forbidden ones.

Cesare and his army are trying to capture Milan in a carefully balanced power negotiation with the French army. Micheletto gets some rare downtime from killing and torturing on behalf of the Borgia dynasty and is shown around Milan by a handsome stranger who takes him to a deserted house which belonged to Leonardo Da Vinci. He shows him Leonardo’s contraptions and inventions as well as something else entirely. There should be more of Sean Harris on screen as Micheletto has such a presence, intriguing story and is acted so well you are left wanting more every time he leaves the screen. It is a real treat when there are episodes which focus on him.

Back in Rome Guilia Farnese makes a re-appearance after being extricated from the Papal house. She has a new suitor and wishes Pope Alexander to approve the union while in Naples Lucrezia pushes hard to toughen up her soft yet pretty Duke husband. However, he is not interested in conflict and just wants a peaceful life. The price you pay for a peaceful life in the time of Borgia is a short one. It looks like Lucrezia has to wear the pants in this partnership and protect herself by making a power play of her own.

By far the most interesting storyline in this episode is Ludovico Sforza’s deal with the devil (or should that be the Pope?). He has been keeping Caterina’s only son in hiding and gives him up to the Borgia’s in return for safe passage and a life spared. What he didn’t count on was Michelleto mistaking capture for murder and as with every deal made by anyone it this season of the Borgia’s, there will be dire consequences.

Review by JoAnn Duff

You can find more of JoAnn's work on her blog.

Death, pestilence and the plague are rife in Naples, so is it the right place to bring a Borgia heir? Michelletto thinks so as he smuggles Lucrezia's baby from Rome back into his doting mothers arms to the disbelief of her husband.

Meanwhile in Rome it’s turning 1500 AD and Pope Alexander sees fit to plan a spectacular show to mark the 1500th year of our Lord. He expects pilgrims to come from all over Christendom and hopefully donate and fill his coffers. The narcissistic egomaniac also commissions a portrait and gets busy organizing an outrageous event. One of his cardinals comes up with a grand idea for gold coin where Pilgrims literally pay for their sins with coins with a coin box outside each confessional.

Caterina Sforza is still plotting as usual and pulls a stunt with a plague filled rag. I am unsure if she really does plan to destroy the Borgia family or maybe she just enjoys pontificating and walking up and down in front of good looking sons from powerful Italian families. Now we reach episode six I hope that thinks will begin to happen.

The Jews are descending on Rome daily, more and more are pouring in and Pope Alexander sees a chance to grab yet more gold coins. For the Jews to stay and trade and live happily in Rome they must contribute generously. While the negotiations are in full swing the Pope is interrupted. The French army is descending with the newly married Cesare as it’s Commander. Is there anyone else in the world in 1500? Or is the whole world’s population nestled and squeezed tightly into Rome. Surely is only a matter of time before the pressures give way.

Review by JoAnn Duff

You can find more of JoAnn's work on her blog.

The Doctor has a secret he will take to the grave.  It is discovered.”

While the Doctor did have a secret it certainly wasn’t what we thought – well those of us that managed to stay spoiler free after the Series 7 DVD’s were incorrectly shipped early. Spoilers drama aside there is so much to say about this episode and I have absolutely no idea where to start.

As the episode begins with Clara – the impossible girl – let’s start with her shall we. I haven’t been silent about my disappointment with Clara’s characterisation and while this episode didn’t make me fall in love with her it was definitely a satisfying conclusion to the only mystery worth solving. The way they inserted Clara into past Doctor Who adventures could have been gimmicky yet somehow it was practically flawless but that might be the nostalgia talking. So far, I have re-watched that scene 7 times and I’m sure I’ll watch it again before I finish writing this review; I’m in awe.

Then there was the inclusion of my favourite occasional guests Strax, Madam Vastra and her wife Jenny. And the fact that they interacted with the always-brilliant River Song was icing on the cake. While we’re on the topic of River Song, I have to say this is the first time since Series 5 that I felt her character was done the justice she deserves. Alex Kingston sizzles on screen and the chemistry between her and Matt Smith is electric.

Other notable aspects included the return of Richard E. Grant’s The Great Intelligence, some seriously scary looking monsters that can literally stop your heart and the fact that we never did learn the Doctor’s name (thank goodness). Of course Clara saved the day, as companions always do, and her sacrifice was actually rather emotional but that had more to do with Jenna-Louise Coleman’s performance than anything else. And I can’t praise Matt Smith enough because my words are inadequate, that man can act.

This episode was everything it needed to be, a fantastic final filled with near death experiences, tear-jerking goodbyes and mind-blowing revelations. It’s basically everything I wanted and it almost makes up for the fact that the last two Series lost some of their heart in order to set up this epic final, and the upcoming 50th Anniversary Special.

We did not learn the Doctor’s name but this episode reminded me why I fell in love with this show in the first place. It’s somehow takes these complicated crazy storylines and makes them relatable. So while I was disappointed with this series as a whole – not that I hated it just didn’t live up to pervious expectations – “The Name of the Doctor” did enough to renew my excitement for not just the 50th Anniversary Special but the next full series as well. Besides now that Clara’s finished her life as a plot device she might actually become a real person.

Well that’s it for Series 7, there is not much else to do now except try to survive the anticipation of Matt Smith and David Tennant teaming up in the 50th Anniversary Special.

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

After last week’s cliff hanger the explosion that destroyed stage the question on everyone’s mind was is Adrianna or Navid dead?

In “We all Fall Down” the series finale it was time for the friends to take their final bow and find some must need resolutions.

Sidney was left asking questions about Annie and Liam’s relationship after she finished reading ‘Undressed’ the book based around Annie’s love life. Liam, who is of course in denial of the on-going feelings for Annie, continues to ignore obvious signs-they should be together.

Navid is found safe and sound but Aid is nowhere to be found. Still in pain, Navid runs into the damaged stage to find her. It was nice to see Navid be heroic and they sat there until rescue crews came, discussing their future together.

Naomi throws a massive concert to raise funds for recent disaster which featured the amazing vocals of the Goo Goo Dolls. The concert is put to stop when a gas leak is found that could harm Aid and Navid inside. With no money for the ‘Naomi Clark Disaster Relief’ the only way out was to sell her tell all story about her so called night with Prince Harry. It worked in Naomi’s favour as Jordan’s mother delivered the news that the Emperor (aka. Prince Harry’s father) was happy to see his son react to the story by entering rehab. Naomi agreed to meet the Emperor as long as she and Jordan could see each once again.

As if Silver needed more pain in her life, the doctor called to announce she had cancer. Dixon had a heart-warming conversation with Silver and it motivated her to fight the cancer: You reach deeper until you can find the strength. That’s all life is, one big fight after another.”

Later Sidney confronted Liam and told him to read the ending of Annie’s book. Aid calls Silver about the baby incident and they make-up from their on-going war. The group said their goodbyes and I teared up when Annie hugged Dixon.

As Annie, Naomi and Jordan walk towards their private plane. Annie looks miserable as rolls her luggage and gets on the plane. Little does she know that Liam is driving his motorcycle beside the plane along the runway until eventually Jordan notices him. Annie gets off the plane and Liam says:
I read the end of your book. The person you made me, the guy who rides up on his motorcycle and says exactly how he feels and what he wants, even if it’s complicated. That’s the guy I want to be.”
Then in one bold and romantic move, Liam gets one knee and asks her to marry him. She says yes.

Although, 90210 did not have the best ending I mean what happened to Silver or Dixon? Did Navid and Aid marry? We could have seen more of a happy ending for all the characters and Max should have returned to sweep Naomi off her feet once again. The show had an overall bitter sweet end but it was still worth it to watch. I see a 90210 marathon in the near future!

Review by Jessica Tisdell

It finally happened, the thing we have all been waiting for for the past eight years, we met 'The Mother' (aka Ted's future wife, played by Cristin Milioti) in the season eight finale of How I Met Your Mother. ...Well, okay, Ted hasn't met her yet, but we have... well we saw her for a few seconds just before the episode ended, but still, she was there, 'The Mother' does exist! Unfortunately we had to sit through a rather underwhelming episode to get to this big reveal.

When Lily accidentally blurts out to Marshall's mother that they are moving to Italy, Marshall takes baby Marvin to see his mother in an attempt to appease her, leaving Lily free to do as she pleases. Ted has finally finished renovating the house he purchased and takes Lily to see it. When they get there, he reveals to Lily that he is selling the house and moving to Chicago. Ted says that since everyone is moving on (Lily and Marshall are moving to Rome, Barney and Robin are getting married), and that he hasn't found 'the one' in New York, he has decided to try his luck in Chicago. This is when Lily realises that not finding 'the one' isn't the real reason Ted is moving to Chicago: it is because he thinks Robin is 'the one' and can't stand the thought of her marrying his best friend. 

Ted tells Lily the story of how they went looking for Robin's 'something old' (a locket she buried in Central Park when she was a teenager), but couldn't find it, and Lily tells him she knows where it is. Ted decides that giving Robin the locket would be a great wedding present... Lily tells him to be careful.

It's really hard to feel sorry for Ted at this point since we know he is so very close to meeting the mother, that he probably won't move to Chicago and sell the house (since this house is the one his kids grow up in), so this storyline fell kind of flat. It was interesting that Ted ended up having Robin's locket all along (it would have felt false if they revealed Barney had it), so there no doubt will be more Ted/Robin/Barney drama when the series returns next season. I'm growing pretty tired of the whole Ted/Robin thing and cannot wait for it all to be over and for Ted to finally move on.

While Marshall is staying with his mother, she is doing everything in her power to convince Marshall to stay in America. Marshall assures Lily that nothing can stop him from going to Rome with her... that is until he gets a phone call offering him a job as a court judge. Marshall accepts, but does not tell Lily.

I was wondering if/how they were going to stop Lily and Marshall moving to Rome (at least for any extended period of time), so this came as a nice surprise and will no doubt cause some friction between Marshall and Lily next season.

Meanwhile, Barney and Robin have finished all of their wedding planning, and decide to take an evening to relax at their favourite restaurant. Of course things do not go to plan when another couple takes Barney and Robin's favourite table. Barney and Robin decide to get revenge against this couple by trying to split them up. They think their plan has succeeded, but the couple gets engaged instead.

This was a pretty lame storyline (not to mention mean), and hardly felt season finale-worth... especially when most of us were probably expecting to see Barney and Robin get married! I guess they're just going to keep milking this one for all it is worth. I suppose it was nice to see that Barney and Robin do work well as a team, and is the shows way of indicating they are *meant* to be...

Thankfully, this rather lacklustre episode was saved at the end when we saw the mother for the first time. I was really glad that they didn't wait until the very last episode of the very last season to reveal her, and now (hopefully) we will have all of next season to get to know her, as well as to watch her and Ted's courtship... Well, that's the hope, but as we all know by now, How I Met Your Mother just loves to drag things out...

Review by Heather Bale.

This week on Grimm, Nick picks the worst possible time to start an affair with a wesen. He spends the majority of ‘Kiss of the Muse’ obsessed over a musai while the rest of the cast work to both arrest another one of her victims and find a cure for him. Meanwhile Juliette has obtained all her missing memories and wants to reconcile with Nick.

Nick’s gradual descent into obsession, while not subtle, is effective. From the moment that she kissed his hand it was obvious something was going to go down, but it is not cemented until he goes to her house instead of dinner with Juliette. The more time he spends with her the worse he gets and it starts to show after his second and third visits. Bravo, David Guintoli. Bravo, Sean Calder.

Speaking of performance and writing, it was great to see Munroe, Hank, Rosalee and (yes, even) Renard working together while Nick was under the influence. Hank and Renard do the policing while Munroe and Rosalee do their usual research in both the trailer and the spice shop. The supporting cast are usually downplayed in importance when it comes to each case so it was nice to see them taking over investigation this episode. I believe it was ‘Mr. Sandman’ that first had this opportunity to play with this idea but it’s this episode that does something with it.

This is also one of the few episodes so far where there is no cure or counterspell for a wesen’s ability provided by either of the cast’s main resources. Munroe and Rosalee had to improvise a solution using their own deductive abilities. Again, I love seeing the showrunners try something different.

As mentioned above this is the episode where Juliette remembers everything and tries to apologise to Nick for how she alienated him. For someone who has been watching this whole time it’s both cathartic and heartbreaking. In any other episode Nick might have loved to hear those words coming out of her mouth. In ‘Kiss of the Muse’, however, he’s too busy thinking about sparkly blue wesen ladies to care.

While I was applauding the writing this episode just a few paragraphs before, there’s two things that really bother me; first and foremost, I have a problem with Juliette’s memory of the talk she and Nick had in the trailer. It is a complete reversal of her original reaction for no other reason than ‘having time to gradually process what happened’. Just a few months ago I would have been screaming ‘why is this so hard to believe’, but the change in attitude here was too jarring. Nick needed her this episode, but that could have been achieved by her having a five second freakout, calming down and then coming to conclusion she did in that scene.

The other issue I had was the musai and the ending of her arc—to put it bluntly we are given no motivation for her actions other than ‘I’m a musai, it’s what we do’. This is lazy writing. While it’s implied she enjoys seeing men fight over her, I have no idea if this is a species trait or just her abusing her powers. Her interrogation scene, which would have been great to establish any kind of backstory, gives her no depth. The idea of her is great and the conflict she creates makes this episode one I won’t soon be forgetting but I’m in no rush to see her again.

In conclusion this episode is great save a few jarring moments and a bland villain. With Juliette in the loop I imagine the team dynamic will be shifting next week. Whether or not it’s for the better is yet to be seen.

Review by Greta Rehak

Last week, was one of best episodes Of New Girl probably ever. Although, the gang did not actually leave the house for the whole episode, the storyline compensated for that. As they all share their ‘first time’ to have sex. Jess claims that she has the worst story, she makes out in kids playground castle, gets stuck, the guys she is with announces he might be gay and they police discover that guy sleeping on the bench near them was dead the whole time. Jess is rescued by a strong fireman named Teddy who takes her up in his arms and she explains that lost her virginity to him. I think Jess has the wrong of idea of what disastrous first time is.

Schmidt tells the story of his first time with his first girlfriend Elizabeth that involved a little much lubricant and a stoned Nick who was there to witness it all. While Winston who believes he had the best experience has his whole world crushed as Nick announces that the woman named ‘Mysteria’ who was actually a prostitute. Although who names their child Mysteria? Cece who also claims to have a “bad experience” was lucky enough to lose her virginity to legendary star Mick Jagger.

As Jess leaves the apartment to meet her date at the end of the episode, Nick stops thinking for once and just does exactly what we have been waiting for. He stops Jess in the elevator and sweeps her off her feet like in a romantic novel. Sigh.

In this week’s episode “Winston’s Birthday”, Nick and Jess are lying in bed when they realise after all that sexual tension, they finally did it. Nick is as happy as one can be after sex and decides to make Jess a cute breakfast in bed when her dad (Rob Reiner) arrives at their apartment doorstep.

Jess is offered a job to tempt at a school and Nick is stuck at home with her father trying not to blurt out anything but it does not go so well. The children are giving Jess hell but she takes charge of the situation. At home Nick eventually pours out his heart to Bob (Jess’s father) who has a lot to say about Nick and Jess beginning a relationship.

Bob turns around and says “ I know him, when I was young I was confused, I was lost, I had no plan- you’re not your father your me and I’m not good enough for my little girl.” Ouch.

Cece is preparing for her wedding to Shivrang but will she go through with it? I say bring back the Cece/Schmidt relationship. It’s just plain awkward between Cece and Shivrang, they barely know each other.

The worst part is the whole time that all this drama is occurring they have forgotten about Winston’s birthday.

Watch New Girl next week to find out whether Cece goes through with the wedding and Taylor Swift is set to guest star.

Review by Jessica Tisdell

This episode is all about the women. Strong women, sexy women, evil women and mad women.

Katarina Sforza is back on the scene after an episode of absence and is still building a union of key Italian power families with her narcissistic self at the helm. Lucrezia is heartbroken as she gives up her illegitimate baby who is to be brought up by her parents out of the public eye as per her marriage negotiations. As she leaves with a heavy, weeping heart to set up her marital home in Naples Michelleto, the Borgia’s faithful guard stays by her side. The Pope however barely notices her sadness and shows no empathy as she leaves her baby behind for a new life without her beloved son. The faithful Michelleto seems to be the only one to listen to Lucrezia’s woes and who understands her pain and want for revenge.

The pre-occupied Pope rather than be a good father and grandfather, seems more interested in sleeping with other noblemen’s wives. However the latest seductive conquest may be one of the most beautiful to ever visit the Vatican, but is also the most unhinged. Has Pope Alexander bitten off more than he can chew?

Cesare arrives in Avignon, France in search of another woman (as if The Borgia’s don’t have their hands full enough). He needs to find a wife to strengthen the Borgia dynasty and also to hopefully snuff out the fires of passion that burn deep for his little sister. Whilst surrounded by strong, beautiful French ladies-in-waiting he is also there to work on powerful negotiations with France, which could take the Borgia household to new heights of control, power and wealth.

Review by JoAnn Duff

There was a lot of hype surround this episode as not only did it herald the return of one the Doctor’s most popular foes but it was penned by Neil Gaiman (who previously wrote the praised “The Doctor’s Wife”). The problem with hype is that it rarely lives up to the expectation. While “Nightmare in Silver” is not as good as “The Doctor’s Wife” it still manages to be one of the most entertaining episodes this year.

The Doctor takes the children Clara nanny’s for, Angie and Artie, to Hedgewick’s World Of Wonders, a popular theme park, only to find that it has long since closed down. The only people left are a small military troop, Webley (Jason Watkins) who runs a sideshow (including several deactivated Cybermen – remnants from the cyberwars), and a man who calls himself Porridge (Warwick Davis). They soon discover that the Cybermen are not as deactivated as they once thought and the park is currently over run by tiny mechanical bugs, cybermites.

These are not the Cyberman we know and love, these are the extreme version. It turns out the only way humans could defeat the Cybermen during the cyberwars was to destroy an entire galaxy. Angie and Artie are captured and the cybermites attach to the Doctor planning on uploading him (and all his knowledge) into their databases but the Doctor isn’t going to let go easily. He challenges the Cybermen inside his mind to a game of Chess. Meanwhile Clara is hanging out with the local military troop, whose mission was technically to search for the missing lecture but in the reality they are a punishment troop for the army’s failures.

The Doctor fights the Cybermen in a game of wits, Clara fights a trigger-happy platoon Captain who wants to blow up the planet and it turns out Porridge is actually the missing emperor. Ultimately the Doctor wins the battle, the children are saved, the planet gets destroyed taking the Cybermen along with it (after they escape of course) and the emperor proposed to Clara, she turns him down.

This episode was a little confusing at times but there was a lot to love starting with the fact that Gaiman has managed to make the well-loved but let’s face it, kind of laughable, Cybermen threatening again. Porridge’s plot-twist identity was fairly easy to guess but guest star Warwick Davis makes the predicable role incredibly likeable. The rest of the guest-cast are unmemorable but it’s over shadowed by a brilliant performance from Matt Smith.

Matt Smith spend much of the episode acting against himself, which is rather more interesting than when he’s acting against Jenna-Louise Coleman, and it’s amazing to watch. In fact every time the story left the Doctor’s inner battle to focus Clara’s military role I found myself getting increasingly frustrated. Had this episode focused solely on Smith’s performance it could have been fantastic but as is it felt rushed at times and loses some of it’s impact.

Next week it’s time to ask the question that must never be answered… also the conclusion to the mystery of Clara and the return of the always-wonderful River Song (Alex Kingston).

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s work can be found at her blog.

Love is in the air in this weeks episode of The Big Bang Theory, ‘The Love Spell Potential’, as two couples take their relationship to the next level!

After an incident at the airport stops Amy, Bernadette and Penny going to Las Vegas, they end up playing ‘Dungeons and Dragons’ with Howard, Leonard and Sheldon. Although reluctant at first, the girls get into the game (aided by Howard’s celebrity impressions as the dungeon master). Things all seem to be going well until Bernadette casts a love spell on Amy and Sheldon. The others start mocking Amy and Sheldon, and their (lack of a) sexual relationship. Amy gets upset and hides in Sheldon’s room.

Amy doesn’t like that the others think their relationship is a joke, but Sheldon does not think it is. He tells her that although they may not be as intimate as other couples, “for me, what we have, is extremely intimate”. Sheldon goes on to say that although he is not ready for more intimacy at this stage, he has not “ruled it out” for the future. Sheldon decides to go along with the D&D love spell scenario as evidence of this, which quickly cheers Amy up.

This scene was so very sweet, and so true to Sheldon’s character. They may not be progressing in their relationship as fast as Amy would hope, but they are progressing. Although Amy may struggle with this at times, she does understand Sheldon and is willing to wait for him to be ready. More importantly, despite what Sheldon says sometimes, he does indeed care for Amy, he is just scared of increasing their intimacy. I have been on the fence for a while about the whole Shamy situation, but this scene has convinced me that it might just/should work after all.

Meanwhile Raj and Lucy go on another date and she confesses she is trying to push herself into more situations she feels uncomfortable with, such as telling her hairdresser she doesn’t like her bangs or sending food back in a restaurant. When their meal comes, Lucy thinks her crab-cakes taste “funky”, and decides she just won’t eat them. Raj thinks this is a good opportunity for Lucy to send food back, but she refuses. He keeps pressuring her, and she eventually excuses herself to go to the bathroom and sneaks out the window like she did on their first date. 

Unfortunately, Lucy becomes trapped at the back of the restaurant which is surrounded by a fence and padlocked gate. She calls Raj who is annoyed with her for bailing on another of their dates. Lucy says she is scared and does not like Raj pushing her. Raj confesses he is scared too, but that is because he likes Lucy a lot. Lucy is shocked, but Raj convinces her of his feelings... and they have their first kiss! Sure it was through a fence, but their relationship is moving forward and I am glad it all seems to be going so well. Of course this is TV-land, where no couple seems to be able to function for more than a few episodes at a time without any relationship drama to keep us watching, so I wonder what, if anything, TBBT has in store for Raj and Lucy... It is the season finale next week after all, so we will all just have to tune in and see what happens!

Review by Heather Bale.

This season has been a rough one for our beloved Smash, and I say "our" because I now truly believe that this show belongs to the fans more than any other show that is airing right now. We have had our beloved show moved from primetime mid week, to Friday, and now to the dreaded Saturday night burn off slot. It is very surprising that this has happened, what with a show that is produced by Steven Speilberg and stars some great actors like Debra Messing, Anjelica Houston combining with the star power of Katherine McPhee, Jennifer Hudson and Bernadette Peters.

We have endured a lot as fans, but through it all the show has continued to produce quality storylines with a stellar soundtrack and show stopping performances that will (IMO) go down in TV history as some of my favourite moments of 2012-13.

This weeks episode just brought that standard to an all new level, for those that have not seen the latest episode I implore that you stop reading now, watch it, and then come back.

For those of us that have, you would already know by now that after Kyle was hit by a car in the final seconds of last weeks episode, this was his last scene for Smash as the accident took his life. First of all you are going to think I am extremely naive as I did not see this coming and I loved this. Kyle was built up to be such an inspiring and loveable character after the events with the show, he was always the shining light that pushed Hit List to the stage and kept Jimmy going and pushed him to be a better person and performer.

The beginnings of a relationship with Tom was hopeful and writing relationship with Julia really was setting him in place to be a contender for a Broadway legend (in the show) This episode was jam packed with extra scenes of Kyle with the main characters in the show, and was a great insight into what happened and how he impacted the people around him. One of the most touching was when he was serenaded by Tom, I must admit that my allergies kicked in and I had to have a cup of tea and a lie down, but nothing could compare to the icy and stubborn character of Derick, played by the incomprehensible Jack Davenport, who admitted his love and loss of this character who had helped him so much.

The final icing on the cake was the performance by Jimmy breaking down and all the characters realising how much he would be missed and lit a fire under getting Hit List to Broadway. While we were all expecting Eileen Rand to do this, it was a complete and gratifying shock when her ex Jerry swept in early and bagged the role as producer.

This was the most highly charged and emotional of Smash to date and the way it dealt with the tragedy of the situation was fantastic. I can not recommend this show enough, if you need to catch up you can buy the first season via the links below.


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