Saturday, October 26, 2013

Misfits Season Five, Episode One

Alex is being wheeled to recovery after his lung transplant, as a young woman looks through various medical charts and vigorously searches for someone. When Alex arrives, the young woman asks him how he is and says that they need to have sex. A nurse appears and drags the woman away, as she yells that Alex has to fuck her.

At the community center, Jess gets off the phone and announces that Alex is out of surgery is going to be just fine. Jess learns that not only did Finn bet that Alex would die but that he said it would be funny if "they chopped his cock of during the operation." Finn says that he is glad that Alex didn't die but Alex's cheating heart cannot be replaced.

Inside the community center, Rudy is excited to see scouts. Jess is shocked to find out that Rudy was once a scout. Rudy does reveals that he was thrown out but says that a scout is meant to walk an impossible line. Of course, Rudy uses this as an opportunity to talk about penises. Is there any subject that he cannot relate to a penis? A female scout leaves the room and Rudy calls her a tramp.  When she walks away, Rudy tells Finn that he should be ashamed for talking to her.

At  the hospital, Alex is told that he has a visitor.  It turns out to be Rudy.  Alex asks how Jess is and Rudy jokes and says that she is dead.  Alex wonders if Jess hates his guts and Rudy suggests that no one can understand the mind of a woman. The woman who begged Alex to sleep with her has returned and she is eavesdropping on Alex's conversation with Rudy.

Later that night, Finn is at the center when he is approached by the female scout. They sit down and chat and Finn asks about her various badges.  The scout claims to have a badge for fucking and asks if Finn has ever fucked a scout before. Finn is now in his underwear and she asks permission to tie him up.  Finn answers that he hates to be like his dad but wants to know if she is over 16. Once Finn is all tied up, he is ordered to lie down and the scout calls out, "he's ready." The other scouts appear and the girl informs Finn that he is going to become one of them.  When Finn questions whether they want him to be a scout, he is informed that he will become an agent of Satan by the troop leader.  The scouts pull out a chicken, as Finn argues that he is shit and will make a terrible agent of Satan.  The scouts start the ceremony and kill the chicken.  Finn uses his telekinesis to force a knife through the scout leader's cheek and takes of running.

Rudy, Jess and Abbey are at the bar and Rudy reveals that he has been to visit Alex.  Abbey suggests that since Alex saved Jess's life that they are even for Alex cheating on her. Finn comes rushing in, still tied up and covered with blood. Rudy suggests that Finn has been busy sucking himself off and accidentally bit the tip off of his penis.  Okay, I suggest every time Rudy says something about a penis we all take one drink.

The next day, at the community center, the scouts are gathered and singing Oasis's Wonderwall, as Rudy looks on and sings along.  Jess says that the scouts don't look like agents of Satan but Finn points out that agents of Satan never look like agents of Satan. Finn wonders whether Jess thinks this all a desperate cry for attention. Greg gets in Finn's face and asks if he was been running an illegal slaughter house in the community center.  Finn swears that he hasn't.

Alex is back home when the woman from the hospital rings the doorbell and admits to following him home. Alex asks her to leave and the door slams on her hand.  Inside the apartment, the woman reveals that her power is to cause accidents and Neil (the man who used to have Alex's new lung) said that he could fuck powers out of people and had promised to fuck the power out of the woman.  Alex believes that Neil was just running a scam but the woman reveals that she has spoken to people that Neil helped. Alex asks if Jess put the woman up to this as a test and says that this is not going to happen. The woman stands up, unbuttons her shirt and shows Alex all of the scares on her body that her power has caused. She offers to pay Alex, when there is a knock on the door.  It turns out it's Jess and she starts on a rant about Alex's cheating. Alex asks for a moment but then Jess catches sight of the woman in his apartment she takes off.

Back at the community center, Finn is in bathroom when the Scout leader appears. The scout leader tells Finn he no longer has to be worried about being turned into an agent of Satan because he intends to rip out Finn's heart. Finn calls for Rudy but no one answers. The leader's eyes goes red, as Finn attempts to use his power to fling a fire extinguisher.  Finn's power lets him down again and he ends up tossing a bar of soap.  The leader slips on the soap and cracks his head.  When Finn approaches to gloat, the leader grabs him says a spell, releasing black insect like things, which fly directly into Finn's mouth. Abbey and Rudy enter and of course are nonplussed to find yet another dead body in the community center.  Finn says that he told them that the scout leader was an agent of Satan. Abbey and Rudy head off to get shovels to bury the scout leader. When Finn looks in the mirror, his eyes go red.

Rudy 1 is dressed in his childhood scout uniform when Rudy2 enters. Rudy2 hands Rudy1 a flier advertising a support group for people with powers and suggests that they should attend. Rudy1 is resistant but Rudy2 thinks that they should talk about their future together.

The misfits are at the bar and Rudy comments on how well Finn is doing with women. Alex enters and explains that he didn't shag the woman in his apartment and asks if he and Jess can go somewhere else.  Finn walks over and asks what is going on, and Jess says that she found Alex shagging another girl. Alex asks if he supposed to be scared, so Finn breaks a beer bottle over the bar, bends Alex over and holds the broken bottle to Alex's neck.  His eyes flash red, as Jess asks Finn to let Alex go. Finn tells Jess that Alex will always shit on her because that is who he is and Alex walks out of the bar. Outside, the woman calls to Alex and he watches she is hit by a car.

Back at the community center, Jess tells Rudy that there is something wrong with Finn. Rudy says that he talked to him but reveals that he actually learned nothing.

Rudy2 has made his way to the meeting room.  Long time viewers of the show should have recognized a character who sees people as video game characters.  Rudy 2 introduces himself as the living embodiment of a split personality disorder.

The Originals, Season One, Episode Four: Girl in New Orleans

Davina has Elijah in a church and she pulls out the dagger briefly, as Marcel watches and quickly re-inserts it.

Klaus has taken Camille to a gallery and muses about the nature of evil being a reaction to a cruel world. Camille wonders why he chose to bring her here and Klaus says it's because he enjoys her company.  Naturally, Camille is blonde. He then launches briefly into his reason for being in New Orleans, claiming to want to help Haleigh and free Davina and asks Camille if this sounds evil. Camille launches into diagnosis mode and suggests that Klaus has unstable personal relationships, stress related paranoia,  chronic anger issues, fear of abandonment, and adds the Klaus needs counseling. Ya think?  Klaus replies that he would rather talk to her and offers Camille a job as his stenographer. Apparently, Klaus wants his memories written and adds that it will give them time to discuss Marcel. Camille attempts to tell Klaus that her private life is none of his business but Klaus is having none of it and replies that since Marcel wants her, that this makes Camille important to his plans.  Klaus tells Camille that the French Quarter is on the verge of war - on the one side is him and the other Marcel, with an army of vampires and a witch.  This understandably causes Camille to feel alarmed, so Klaus compels her to be calm and then suggests they talk more about Marcel.

Marcel hunches over Elijah's coffin and says that he is as resilient as a cockroach but adds that it does not matter because it is time to return Elijah to Klaus.  Devina points out that Marcel asked her to learn how to kill an Original but Marcel is steadfast that he owes Klaus one for saving his life. Devina then brings up the annual Dauphne Street Festival and says that she wants to go.  Marcel points out that the entire purpose of her being locked away, is so that no one can see her. Marcel adds that Sophie works in the middle of Dauphne Street and implies that the witches will do something bad to Davina if they see her.  Davina is not convinced and reminds Marcel that he controls the witches and suggests that he makes Sophie go away. Davina pleads that it's just one night and Marcel says no.  Davina points out that she does everything he says but believes that Marcel forgets what she is capable of.  Davina adds that she can make someone's blood boil and Marcel begins to sweat.  Marcel agrees to allow her to go along with an escort and calls it a compromise.

Klaus approaches Camille and she wants to know why is it that when they're alone, she remembers that he is a vampire but when he leaves, all she thinks is that Klaus is some really hot guy with money to spend on a memoir.  Klaus explains that this is how compulsion works.  Camille wonders if her neurons are being shut down somehow, or if Klaus is using a form of hypnosis on her. Klaus calls Camille curious and changes the topic Marcel.  Camille reveals that Marcel is bringing a young girl that he is mentoring to the festival tonight.  Camille adds that the girl is going through a rough time and is rebelling against authority. Camille says that she refused to help but Klaus forces her to say yes and Camille snarks, asking why Klaus bothers with politeness. Klaus says that he likes the way Camille's mind works and adds that Davina is Marcel's secret weapon.

Agnes and Haleigh are chatting and Agnes points out that Haleigh is over due for a check up.  Haleigh reminds Agnes that she is a pregnant werewolf.  Rebekah says that a lot of women would kill to have a child and adds that it's odd that Haleigh doesn't take better care of hers.  Is it me, or is Rebekah channeling Rosalie from Twilight?  Agnes says that she knows a doctor out in the bayou, off the beaten path and has made an appointment for Haleigh. Haleigh agrees to go.

Rebekah goes back to her internet searching and Klaus enters asking how it's going.  Rebekah tells him that someone has to find Elijah, even if she has to search every attic in New Orleans. Klaus says that he prefers actual strategy, as opposed to mind numbing labor. Klaus tells Rebekah that Marcel's delay in returning Elijah suggests that he is no longer in control and wonders if this means that Devina will be interested in a new alliance. Rebekah says that Klaus's desire for power is taking a front seat to finding Elijah.  Klaus replies that it's killing two birds with one stone. 

Diego is feeding, when he is interrupted by Josh, asking if there is a way to fast track getting a daylight ring.  Diego tells Josh that he will get a daylight ring, when he is invited into he inner circle. Josh points out that there is an opening now that Thierry is gone.  Diego tells Josh to shut up about Thierry and adds that Thierry didn't deserve what he got.  Diego says that Marcel was showing off for Klaus. Rebecca enters and tells Diego that she can help him out with his Klaus problem in exchange for a little bit of gossip. Rebekah tells Diego that she and Marcel used to be an item and wants to know who he is with now. Diego turns away saying that Rebekah has seen him with Camille. Rebekah says that she does not believe that Marcel is really interested in Camille and suggests that there must be another girl in Marcel's harem. Rebekah promises to leave New Orleans, taking Klaus with her, if Diego gives her a name.  Diego says that if Marcel is some other "honey", she is probably close by in the Quarter. 

Marcel is walking through the festival grounds followed by his vampires. Marcel orders that the witches be notified that if they show up, they will be killed and adds that he doesn't want any Originals around either. Apparently, Marcel is not impressed by the fact that Rebekah has been sniffing around. 

The festival is now in full swing and Marcel is acting as Devina's escort. Marcel suggests that they should go over the rules and Devina replies that she won't talk to anyone about anything and that includes about witches, vampires, Originals, or him. Devina reminds Marcel that he promised not to hover.

Agnes has driven Haleigh out to the doctor, claiming that the location is so remote because Marcel kept harassing the doctor's patients. As soon as Haleigh gets out of the car, Agnes gets on the phone and orders that people get sent in immediately and to accomplish their task quickly. 

At the bar, Marcel tells Camille that he is relieved to see her after he had his little explosion.  Camille assures him that everything is fine and says that he can leave her and Davina together now.  Devina pipes up that Marcel was supposed to stop hovering ten minutes ago. Marcel smiles saying that Devina has authority issues and excuses himself to go and chat with the mayor. Camille approaches Devina and asks the name of the hot guy with the fiddle that she has been staring out.  Devina says that his name is Tim and that they have known each other since they were ten. 

Rebekah enters a church, where she is told to go away because it is closed.  Rebekah says that she  noticed that the attic has shutters. Rebekah notices the blood on the walls and asks what happened there. Father Kiernan says that St. Anne's used to be the heart of the neighborhood but has been abandoned since the night of the massacre.  We get a quick flash to nine seminary students being killed by one of their own.  Father Kiernan points out that Rebekah is standing on blood but she says that she is not squeamish.  Rebekah compels Kiernan to tell her how to get to the attic and demands that he forget that she was there. Rebekah heads upstairs where she finds Elijah's coffin but cannot enter the room.

Rebekah gets shifted into a memory that both Elijah and she share.  Elijah tells Rebekah that Davina removed the dagger, unaware that doing so even briefly would awaken him. Elijah tells Rebekah that he will be himself in a few hours but is not ready to leave yet because he wants to learn more about Devina. Elijah plans to suggests a truce, which will end the feud between vampires and witches, thus eliminating the threat to Haleigh and her baby. Elijah asks Rebekah to swear to protect Haleigh because she is family now.  Once Rebekah promises, she is shifted out of the dream state. 

Haleigh has just finished with an ultrasound, when she gets a text from Rebekah wondering where she is.  The doctor tells Haleigh that her blood pressure is a bit high and says that she has something for it.  Haleigh texts back that she is with doctor, as in the background a wolf howls.  When the doctor loads up a syringe, Haleigh knocks her unconscious and locks the door before the werewolves can enter. Haleigh manages to get out the window, just as the werewolves break down the door.

Haven, Season 4, Episode 6: Countdown

Big revelation last episode – Audrey knows she’s really Audrey! She’s been faking Lexi – so time for some meaty meta, right?

Right? Hah, I live in hope.

We have a man who is killed – and seemingly drained or faded – by a travel agent’s advertising board. And they say foreign travel is good for you.

Duke and Audrey confirm again that Audrey is Audrey and spell out that Audrey was pretending so no-one would force her to kill Nathan (in case you missed that part, it being merely blatantly obvious. Haven doesn’t have the highest respect for their viewers intelligence). Audrey finds it really easy to play Lexi because unlike her other past incarnations, she remembers Lexi (and some of Lexi is bleeding over into Audrey with her mannerisms and turns of phrase). Now they both have to make sure Nathan doesn’t find out since he’s got all that guilty-self-sacrifice thing going.

Which is when he arrives, Audrey slips back into Lexiness and there’s awkwardness all round. Duke and Audrey make up a terrible excuse to keep Audrey and Nathan apart – which means Duke now has to follow Nathan around to protect Nathan from the Guard.

Speaking of, Jordan the-oh-gods-can-someone’s-trouble-accidentally-kill-her-already is on Duke’s boat with Duke’s big brother Wade for lots of flirting that can’t go anywhere (he’s still willing to try for a kiss from the woman whose touch brings bowel-loosening, consciousness-killing agony. Which shows that however silly Duke’s ideas are, he still got all the brains in the family. She wants to tell Wade how he is the solution to ending the Troubles and that Audrey is the problem.

Yes Jordan is really buying into this whole “let’s get Wade to kill Audrey and see if that ends the Troubles.”

Vince angrily confronts Jordan – she doesn’t understand what she’s messing with and, no, nor does he but he does better than her. He still can’t face Audrey killing Nathan however. He tells her her plan won’t work – and she uses her power on him. She’s determined to try.

Nathan and Duke meet up with Gloria, the ME who worked with Nathan’s dad who has been brought out of retirement in these newly Troubled times. She’s kick arse and awesome. She’s quit unsurprised by Seth, the victim, getting rigor mortis before dying, his cells going bonkers (“it’s a medical term”). She also doubts Duke’s presence since she bought weed from him and her intern is Vicki who does the deadly drawings back in season 1 (Gloria keeps her away from the paperwork).

Duke likes Gloria. I think she’s awesome and better be a regular character. They do learn from Rebecca, the cop doing the questioning that the victim apparently received text messages he didn’t like. Rebecca also finds that Seth was carrying documentation for a new private school, Stillwater School – a school she’s heard of that only allows in “clean” (non-Troubled) children. Talking around she finds out that there was a meeting planned that Seth was getting supplies for trying to get parents to commit to sending their children to the new school.

We also have a cop called off another case to investigate the phone sending killer texts – a phone that wasn’t connected to anyone at the time of death. The victim of the previous crime is less-than-amused that a Troubled crime scene takes precedence over his robbery. The cop, Tater, is even less pleased because he becomes the next victim while holding the phone, even though the phone is off. But the rigored Tator is actually looking at the computer read out on his bike – which also received texts. Nathan has Rebecca pass on the word not to use phones.

Nathan gets a call from Audrey and, again, convinces her to stay at the police station and help from there even though she’s eager to get involved. And Wade comes to the same station, ostensibly to get a permit to hold a firework’s display. He takes the chance to meet Audrey – and to leave his pen/secret recording device he just picked up on her desk (presumably at Jordan’s insistence).

Duke and Nathan head to the Stillwater school meeting but on the way Nathan asks about Duke and Jennifer and raises the lion in the room – last season, outside the barn, Duke said he loved Audrey. Nathan isn’t playing jealous, he’s just happy someone will look after “Lexi” when he’s dead and the Troubles are over. They meet the guy who is running the school and he is bemused because his phone, computer and watch all start counting down to zero (which Nathan and Duke can’t see). For some reason Nathan and Duke just stand there and watch while the man counts down from 5 – and then becomes the next victim. What did they think would happen when it reached zero? People would leap out of the side rooms and yell “HAPPY BIRTHDAY?!”

Once Upon a Time, Season 1, Episode 3: Forget Me Not

Back to a few years ago in the Enchanted Forest – that would be Once Upon a Time’s Enchanted Forest – 3 men are in the road, one of them injured, causing a coach to stop. While suspicious and impatient, one of the guards on the coach helps – while another figure quietly sneaks in and removes a large bag.

Cut later to the man who was screaming in pain, now in a monk’s habit, laughing around a campfire: Friar Tuck, Robin Hood with the rest of the merry men. And among them, newly joined after making the daring robbery, is the Knave of Hearts, Will Scarlet (which explains why Alice keeps calling him Will).

To the present day in Wonderland and Alice takes down one of the Knaves wanted posters which are everywhere: he’s wanted for theft, posturing, imposturing, fraud, gambling, disturbing the peace and public nudity.

Really, you’re going to accuse him of public nudity without a flash back? Unfair, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, very unfair! Though I’m quite impressed with “posturing”

The Caterpillar clearly wants Knave badly – he offers to leave so as not to drag Alice into his trouble but she thinks a thief is the ideal person to find who stole Cyrus’s bottle. Knave has an idea – they need to see who got to the Dandy Lion before they did and stole the bottle – so they need the Forget-Me-Knot. It’s a rope that when twisted forms a frame that, when looked through, shows the past.

In Agrabah, Jaffar is hosting the Red Queen and both of them are taunting Cyrus about finding his note from Alice – the one telling him she’s coming for him despite his warning. They remind us that they need Alice to make 3 wishes then they own the genie – and they intend to force her to wish. Apparently they’re going to force Cyrus to do something to her using an extremely big book.

Back to Wonderland and the Knave knows where the Forget-Me-Knot is, the Caterpillar has it. That is not helpful. But the Knave is confident he has a deal that will get her the Knot – and clear his name. He leads her through a toadstool into the Underland, what he calls “his world.”

But the minute they get down Nazim – and the whole room – moves on him. He owes everyone money… Knave concedes he may need Alice’s help until the Caterpillar speaks and tells them to let him go. The Caterpillar mob boss (yes, he’s a mob boss. Yes that’s awesome) wants the debt Knave owes and refuses his deal of doubling his debt in exchange for the Forget-Me-Knot. Alice realises the Caterpillar doesn’t have the Knot – he’s too greedy to turn down such a deal.

New deal – Caterpillar tells them where the Forget-Me-Knot is, they get it (use it) and then give it to him and the Knave’s debt is erased. Fine – the Knot is in the hands of the Grendal, which is apparently very very bad. But so is doublecrossing the Caterpillar – as the severed, but still living and screaming, head on his desk makes clear.

Vampire Diaries, Season 5, Episode 4: For Whom the Bell Tolls

Damon and Stefan are on a road trip – Stefan knows lots of day to day things – but he’s been reading his journals (full of extra whining angst – over a century of extra whining angst, good gods the tedium!) and none of it is ringing any bells (though if I were Stefan’s subconscious, I’d deny all knowledge as well). Oh and Stefan thinks he’s the fun brother and Damon the safe brother

Damon deliberately wrecks the car to prove a point. Stefan accepts that no, he is not the fun brother.

Elena is concerned about sending Stefan off with Damon since they may do Bad Things and shares her worry with Caroline who is pretty sure they will do Bad Things (and then they can all laugh about it later. Tee-hee a serial killer!). But time to infodump what Vampire Barbie has been up to – she’s trying to get close to Creepy Professor Maxfield who knows far too much about vampires, as well as semi-dating Jessie (he-who-is-going-to-be-snack-food) and she’s bringing him to a special Mystic Falls rememberance graveyard ceremony/party/fawning founder worship

Really? She goes to college and she’s STILL going to these Mystical fall events? And how many events can Mystic Falls HAVE?! They always seem to be getting ready for some massive, town-wide celebration (they just had one where the mayor died!), this one called Remembrance Day – because you remember dead folks.

Stefan and Damon are in a bar, already drinking to the town’s Remembrance day celebrations while talking about how morbid it is – and Stefan zones in on the waitress. He’s convinced he’s a vampire – but Stefan also has a problem with drinking live blood. Stefan puts forward the idea that his whole ripper-serial-killer-thing may be because of his remembered trauma and guilt – and since he doesn’t remember he may be safe now! I agree with Damon that testing “am I still a serial killer?” is probably not a great idea. Elena, realising a scene has gone on for several minutes without her, turns up and Stefan forgets her name (*snerk*). She’s displeased with Damon for not making introducing her the priority of his 200 year recap.

To Bonnie and Jeremy where Bonnie’s new source of entertainment is watching Jeremy work out (really Bonnie, surely he showers? This must be much much more entertaining) and telling him every girl on the other side thanks him for it (there’s an image for you now Jeremy – all the invisible ghosties be watching you).  Alas, light jokes cannot stay because Jeremy has been dodging all their friends for Bonnie – because they still don’t know she’s dead and they’re all waiting for her to show and fix Stefan’s memory. Because, as Jeremy puts it in the most shamelessly lampshaded moment on Vampire Diaries, ever “she helps”.

Speaking of, Matt calls Jeremy to ask for advice about him losing time and apparently going wandering, getting muddy and picking up weapons. Jeremy naturally thinks it’s the serial-killer Gilbert ring but Matt denies it – he blames (rightly albeit with little reason for the logical leap). Clearly he needs Bonnie’s help and why can’t Jeremy summon Bonnie and make her fix things!?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Raven Calls (Walker Papers #8) by C.E. Murphy

Joanne has returned to Ireland, at very short notice (but with a very awesome coat) to try and find a cure for the werewolf bite. Her decisions is further reinforced by her magic virtually dragging her to Tara.

But when there, and meeting up with Gary, she is plunged into her magic and into the past, to the old Aos Si rulers of Ireland, finding some surprising revelations about her ancestry and what that means and beginning to see the full scope of the Master’s powers and plans.

The magic gives her one last chance to see her mother – and to save her – and to close many of the damaged time loops that have been formed over the years of battling the Master. But the time when she confronts the Master directly is approaching…

Time travel. Lots of time travel. With time loops and paradoxes and all kinds of shenanigans.

This is a problem. It’s very easy to become lost and confused with time travel. The roving tenses, the shifting scene, the general blending of time and place can be very hard to follow. It has to be very carefully done to make sure the reader can follow without being completely, hopelessly lost.

Aaaaand, this is the Walker Papers which, among their many good points, also has a habit of leaving me completely, hopelessly lost even without time travel. The imagery, the description of power, the different realms – it all can be one confusing mess that has left me bemused and confused far too often.

So, The Walker Papers + time travel means we’re probably going to have a problem. And we did – it wasn’t clear. I had to stop and go back, I had to double check, I had to recap  and sometimes I just had to run with it and file it under “stuff happened, I don’t need to know what” and keep moving.

There’s also a lot of unexplained references to past books. Now I appreciate the lack of tiresome recapping, I do; I’ve made it clear before that I don’t like recaps. But even I had to stop and think about some of the things referenced.

So, it wasn’t an easy read.

On top of that, Joanne felt wrong to me – specifically, her dialogue felt… strained. I love Joanne, I love her snark, I love her exasperation, I love her irreverence, I love her trying to understand things and being frustrated with all this supernatural stuff and being frustrated with herself over the supernatural stuff. I love the fact that frustration plus her early resistance to anything resembling woo-woo left her with zero urges to play to various gods and revered figures egos. I love her snark over grandiose, ornate magical talk. And I love her glee when she remembers or knows something in her limited occult lore – even if she is running around and showing her blatant 101 knowledge in front of the experts. I love her habit of babbling when nervous.

And I loved it in this book – but at times it was a little forced. Partly because she has grown beyond a lot of this and partly because it was taken to ridiculous extremes – there were times when Joanne came across as childish, bad tempered and just plain mean, snotty and nasty; which has never been her before.

So there we have the negatives, and I won’t downplay them, they are problems. But there’s a lot of good here as well.

The Tomorrow People, Season 1, Episode 3: Girl Interrupted

We start with a 5 year old flash back. A school dance; 2 guys enter and one tells his friend that a girl sat on the sidelines “never says no”. He goes to speak to her and it’s clear she’s self-conscious, nervous, uncertain and deaf. She also looks a lot like Cara. He talks to her for a brief moment and suggests they go somewhere quieter.

He drives her off before pulling over and complimenting her. They kiss, it’s all sweet and nice until he groups her and she recoils. He says he heard about her from the guys – and she smacks him. He lunges for her and she flees the car, ripping her clothes as he grabs for them. He chases her, screaming her name, Cara (it is Cara!) and pins her to the ground. She flings him off her with telekinesis, staggers to her feet and unleashes another bolt sending him flying.

She stands in confusion not just over her powers, but she can suddenly hear.

Today she’s on a subway, hearing everyone’s thoughts and finding it a little overwhelming. When everyone clears out she teleports to the underground HQ (this place needs a name! I can’t believe people pretentious enough to call themselves the “Tomorrow People” haven’t come up with a cheesy name for their hideout!). She goes to Russell and John – and John notices she’s not exactly chipper and that she went on a food run and came back without food. She snaps out of it and asks what the plan is (John and Russell were talking about finding paranormals before they became agents or Ultra stopped their powers) and he shows her a key – and says they need Steven.

Steven is at a party, taken there by Astrid to try and get him back in to the social scene after his various problems when he thought he was mentally ill. He spends a lot of the party reading people’s minds, including Emily, a troubled girl at the party who has apparently gone through hell. As he leaves the party he hears her think that “in 48 hours, I will be dead”, apparently looking forward to it.

Jedikiah, at Ultra, is continuing his work of kidnapping kids, injecting them with strange, DNA altering chemicals and then threatening them with death. The injection that strips their powers also causes agony and convulsions.

Which is what John talks to Steven about back at the Hideout as a lead in for their new mission – plant something in Ultra’s computers which will give all their information to Tim (the super computer they have for reasons unknown) allowing them to track new breakouts as soon as Ultra discovers them. It’ll be useful but so dangerous – John asks Steven if he’s ready

Errr, if he’s not then why even have him undercover? This is the first time him being undercover has seemed to be remotely useful.

Steven takes the chance to tell Cara about Emily but she says that he needs to stay out of people’s minds, that thoughts aren’t always clear and he can’t really intervene based on what he’s mined from their heads. Steven protests – he knows Emily, since they both went to therapy (she was apparently driving when something bad happened to her sister in a car – I guess a crash) together; but Cara warns him that as he reads minds he’ll find everyone has a sad story, he needs to forget about humans and focus on their own. Especially since they’re struggling to survive.

American Horror Story, Season 3, Episode 3: The Replacements

Fiona is having a hard time sleeping and makes her way to the drinks cabinet and has a little flashback to 1971 – when she was in New Orleans with the last Supreme. Young Fiona asked the old Supreme how she knew she was Supreme – when she was young the old Supreme manifested several powers, which is apparently not unheard of and doesn’t make you Supreme (you have to master the “7 Wonders” for that).  Young Fiona wants to prove it but the Old Supreme mocks her as a foolish child who isn’t ready.

Young Fiona hits back – when the new Supreme appears the old Supreme fades, she pulls out the old Supreme’s pills for illnesses commonly associated with old age and says how she’s weakening. The old Supreme slaps her and says Fiona will bring the coven to ruin – and young Fiona cuts her throat

The whole scene was watched by their butler – who is still the silent, tongueless butler Spalding now.

Move on to modern Fiona in a club talking about the dance – her long practiced dance of seduction which has now come to an end. She goes to a plastic surgeon and insists on seeing a video of the surgery, crying quietly as she sees what they do to tighten the skin.

Zoe has gone to visit Kyle’s mother, who is deeply grieving for her son. She describes how wonderful Kyle was and how he stepped up to help when his father left. She also tells Zoe how she was ready to commit suicide before she rang – Zoe interrupted her and saved her. Zoe assures her that she will see Kyle again, which his mother ascribes to religious belief not necromancy.

Back at the school, Queenie, Nan and Madison watch the new neighbours moving in next door, including the good looking young man without a shirt; before his mother arrives to lecture him for his lack of modesty.

Inside, Madame LaLaurie is in inconsolable tears at the news that America has a Black president.  Fiona has no sympathy for LaLaurie’s racist tears and is happy to tell her she voted for Obama twice and then list all the other high ranking positions Black people have held; and LaLaurie can now embrace her new role as the new maid. Her outrage does not impress Fiona one tiny iota.

At the dinner table Madison mocks Nan and Queenie for being virgins (to which Nan protests that she isn’t – why assume that and Queenie says she’s “saving herself”, alas it sounds defensive) and the new maid arrives. Queenie recognises her as the woman who hit her with a candlestick – and LaLaurie responds with racial abuse. She throws Queenie’s plate rather than serve her – Queenie stands up to slap her and Fiona arrives. Madison sums it up with “Ms. Aryan sisterhood got between Queenie and her food” (because we had to have a fat joke in there). Fiona makes it clear that “Delphine” (LaLaurie) is to be Queenie’s personal slave and Queenie can ask her to do whatever she wants. Fiona says how much she loathes racists – uh-huh, not the tune you were playing last week Fiona

To the shack in the woods with Misty with her slightly concerning obsession with Stevie Nicks and zombie!Kyle. While she uses Stevie Nicks to make a point about finding your people, Kyle remains still and unresponsive – even when Zoe arrives and Misty opens his shirt to show off how all his incisions – except around the neck – have completely healed. (The neck hasn’t because it was “really deep”, since all the cuts are from limbs being reattached, I think they were “pretty deep” as well).

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Haven Sneak Peak and Clips

Sneak Peak!

And a look behind the scenes

And some fan questions!

And for Lucas Bryan and  Emily Rose

Glitter & Doom (Masque of the Red Death #1.5) by Bethany Griffin

I always have mixed feelings about novellas in a series since I so often don’t see the point of them, perhaps due to my general love of meta in all things.

I find novellas frustrating because they often don’t have anything to add to the series and they’re too short to develop any kind of engaging story in their own right to pull me in. Sometimes they’re an interesting “day in the life” insight into the characters when they’re not facing the epic plot of epicness – which can be interesting character development but even that is of mixed utility, especially if it’s done before.  

Without something to add to the main story – some advanced world building or plot or character development, something that will reflect on the main story I’m usually left feeling like the book was rather pointless, an unnecessary addition clinging to a main plotline at best or a cynical money grab at worst. At the same time, if the entire main meta rests on development revealed in a novella or short story, I find it annoying because such major developments should really be woven into the main plot line, not included in a novella which, I confess, I generally consider an add-on to a series rather than essential reading.

In all, I’m pretty difficult to please when it comes to novellas.

And all that being said, Glitter and Doom was one of those books that got it right.

Of course, part of the reason Glitter and Doom really worked for me was the same reason I found Dance of the Red Death kind of disappointing. The whole series follows Araby around when, frankly, she’s the least interesting and compelling character there is. Quite literally, just about everyone else: April, Elliot, Kent, Will, even Will’s younger siblings, would be more interesting protagonists than Araby. I actually want to praise the quality of these side characters but am stopped by the sheer lack of any compelling qualities in the protagonist herself.

Which is where Glitter and Doom comes in –a book that is about April and Kent and even a little Elliot. We get to see the backstories of Elliot that we missed and that add so much texture to his character. We get to see who Kent was, what motivated him, why he was involved, how he met April and how he actually became one of the team – rather than just a character who was dropped into the plot rather randomly.

But most of all we see April. April the active. April the intelligent. April the cunning. April the courageous. April the most-definitely-should-have-been-the-protagonist.

In terms of story, there isn’t much there. In fact, there isn’t one. It’s completely impossible to read this book if you hadn’t read the first book because this novella is just a behind the scenes look at the plot that has already happened. It doesn’t tell the story, it fills in what was happening “back stage” while we were been dragged around with Araby.

It is also extremely short .

Supernatural, Season 9, Episode 3: I'm No Angel

A couple of priests are walking along minding their own business when some very-obvious angels stop them – they’re looking for Castiel.

Castiel is in a homeless shelter. And he’s eating toothpaste and going by the name “Clarence” and he’s tired of urinating. He goes to work, picking up litter and finds a trail of blood in the cemetery – he follows it to where blood is smeared over the name on a gravestone and sees 2 bodies – the priests at the beginning of the episode. They’re impaled on the fence, their eyes have been gouged out.

At the Winchester cave, Dean approaches mornings the same way I do (someone one has to gentle sneak up on) but Sam has already been out, up dressed and had a run and brought Dean an extra-grease breakfast. Dean is duly concerned by this freakish, unnatural behaviour (getting up early, running?!) and worries about Sam – so Ezekiel takes over and assures Dean Sam feels amazing. Yeah that was probably not very reassuring. But Ezekiel has news to pass on - listening to Angel Radio he has heard  group of angels organising, finding vessels – and looking for Castiel.

Still, Dean isn’t particularly happy with Ezekiel just randomly dropping in and shoos him away to let Sam take up the reigns again and we have the added problem of Dean forgetting what Sam does and doesn’t know.

Cut to angel Bartholomew who is cleverly manipulating a televangelist and his flock for vessels and doubtless other shinies. One of the faithful volunteers to be a vessel for the divine; giving herself to the angels. White light enters her (looking just like the black smoke of demon possession just light not darkness) and she… explodes messily. As Bartholomew explains, (calmly and without a hint of remorse to the deeply freaked out preacher) not everyone can hold an angel, no matter how willing. Casualties are to be expected and are a small price to pay – the preacher finds a theological justification, the angel doesn’t really care but seems willing to humour him.

Dean is worried about the organised angels being a threat to Castiel though Sam points out he may take a while to reach the Winchester cave simply because he’s human now and can’t move so fast. Still, he works with Dean to track how far Castiel could have travelled and if he’s in trouble – and find stories of exploded failed angel possessions and tortured priests which they also ascribe (accurately) to angel activity.

Castiel is still travelling among the homeless – who surprise him with their kindness and patience, even while he confuses them with his unfamiliarity with things like food and dealing with mortality and flatulence and sleep (and looking for sheep to count). He’s woken during the night by an angel trying to kill him – he slashes Castiel’s arm but Castiel still has his angel blade – and stabs the man in the chest. One light show and one dead angel.

Back at angel central, Rev Boyle, the preacher, is getting them an enormous number of vessels which both surprises and impresses the angels. Bartholomew seems to be the leader, other angels calling him sir and him even threatening an angel for failing to catch Castiel. They seem afraid of him – especially when he learns of their latest failure to catch Cas.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Being Human (US) Sneak Peak

Being Human isn't back with us until January - but we've got some hints on what's coming


Courting Darkness (Otherworld #10) by Yasmine Galenorn

Hyto, Smoky’s ancient and lethal draconic father, has finished threatening from afar and is finally making good on his threat to make Camille suffer – blaming her for how much face he lost in the Draconic world.

Having a powerful White Dragon hunting you is a terrifying situation – but with friends falling into portals and the Elder Fae lurking around and running amok, Camille can hardly hide.

But nor can she escape the grasp – and tortures – of her ancient, sadistic father-in-law.

Ok, a little unfair, but I can’t help but be a little disappointed in this book – primarily because the series were getting better. Better written, more focused world building and characterisation, more pointful storylines and at least some of the bloat corralled – or if there was going to be bloat at least it would be USEFUL bloat. So did Blood Wyne advance the main story? No. But it expanded relevant world building – the vampires – and developed Menolly’s character and relationships (and introduced new plot lines that weren’t all that essential but the Otherworld series loves its side tracks). So bloat – but bloat with a purpose.

But this?

The main storyline centres around Camille and Smoky’s evil father. Already that’s going to be shaky because Smoky’s evil father has been a pointless background looming adding nothing to the whole series for a very long time – it was the very definition of a storyline that could have been cut. It has added nothing in 9 books except angst and it adds nothing now. It wasn’t even used as an avenue to develop Smoky’s character to explore the dragons’ world building. It did nothing to advance the world building or the meta plot

Nor did it develop Camille’s character – unless we consider additional trauma to be a necessary expansion of her character (I don’t). We don’t see her develop any real connection to Aeval yet, despite joining the Unseelie court in a week (the whole book covers about that long). There’s nothing really from her relationship with the Moon Mother, her magic – or, well, anything.

About the only change to anything when this book finishes is Camille has some more scars and trauma and they pick up a grateful refugee to act as a maid.

The main plot line is pointless.

DWTS Takes on Game of Thrones

This dancing actually isn't bad and reminded me of how much I miss this show. It is however worth noting that Khal Drogo never would have danced like this, no one ate the heart of a horse nor did anyone flash any boobs.

Beauty and the Beast, Season 2, Episode 3: Liar, Liar

Cat starts her day concealing the bruise on her neck from Vincent’s little freak out last week – and gets a visit from Heather who is clearly still torn about how to tell Cat that her dad isn’t her biological father. Made harder by Cat praising how much Heather is doing in the wake of their dad’s death – and how she’s the better daughter. Heather has another issue to juggle – she has a new job offer, in Miami and really wants to talk to Cat about it; they agree to meet later. And she does notice the bruise on Cat’s neck and notes she has to cover it – or people will think she has an abusive boyfriend.

Vincent drops in on a nervous and babbly JT to ask if Cat’s ok and to apologise through JT to her. JT completely doesn’t understand, has no idea that Vincent hurt her and tries to drive Vincent down memory lane again with lots of nervous babble. Vincent finally blurts the truth to JT’s shock; he makes some excuses and adds he’ll stay away though JT points out Cat may not want that. He leaves, asking JT to check on Cat.

Vincent takes a call while he leaves – Agent Tucker, Agent Reynold’s sidekick warning Vincent he has a new lead but he’s not safe – right as another Beast catches him and rips out his heart after demanding to know how Tucker found him.

Cat goes to see Gabe, who lampshades her victim blaming and making excuses for Vincent rather well – but she’s more worried about the other Beasts out there, other victims they don’t know about. Showing the same level of decision making as last episode, she decides to find out who is pulling Vincent’s strings she will sneak onto his boat, pretending to be there for him but secretly to check his computer. Yes, even though Vincent has super lie-detector powers. She does accept, or seem to accept she can’t be with him though…

…and Tess calls with another Beast victim; Agent Tucker. They arrive on scene and Tess tells them the car is registered to the FBI. Gabe thinks of the best way to cover any CCTV and Cat hurriedly denies any possibility of it being Vincent because he “only kills bad guys.” Really Cat? Tess is no more impressed by Cat’s boat spying plan either – and then Agent Reynolds shows up (Cat’s biological father) and begins jurisdictional tussling with Gabe. While Gabe sees him off, Cat gets a call from JT who wants to talk to her about Vincent hurting her – but she focuses on Vincent being with JT while Agent Tucker was being killed; he has an alibi.

They are going ahead with the silly boat plan – which means training Cat to pass a polygraph and keep her heart rate, sweat etc calm (wait, didn’t Vincent just look into her eyes and see the truth within last time? Hence the need for him to take off her blind fold? And yes, I kind of hate myself for typing that sentence.) Tess has a bag of tricks to help and after discussing hickeys and crushing poor Gabe’s comfort zones, he declares her passed.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Witches of East End, Season 1, Episode 3: Today I am a Witch

Everyone’s wandering around in the middle of the night; Freya, having a sleep over at Dash’s, goes searching for a glass of water and gets weirded out by the paintings in the mansion before running into Killian. Sexual tension rises and they kiss – and Dash catches them.

Wendy and Ingrid are up reading tarot cards to try and figure out which of Ingrid’s loved ones is doomed to die because of the resurrection spell. Upstairs, Joanna is woken by her evil doppleganger who completely vandalises her headboard with her symbol before disappearing. Hooligan! And back downstairs, Wendy has an answer from the cards – the person who will die is… Ingrid.

Someone she loves is herself? That’s either really self-affirming or really narcissistic. Possibly both.

Ingrid looks at her arms slowly being consumed by black veins and Freya runs through the impossibly huge mansion looking for Dash. I smell dream sequences. Joanna is slowly strangled by her dopplganger carrying a poppet – and wakes up. Followed quickly by her daughters. Told you.

Ingrid goes to Wendy downstairs, for real this time, and expresses her continues unhappiness with all things magical, until Wendy pulls out a magical skylight and points out how wonderful it can be to. Freya runs in, apparently from Dash’s to tell them how her sex dreams about Killian are destroying her sleep and making her feel guilty. She wants a magical solution – which isn’t so simple; but Wendy does want to train them in all things magical (and keep that a secret from their mother).

Which fails since Joanna overhears coming downstairs at that point. After a bit more banter (they’re so good at the banter) she claims she banished the shapeshifter, the threat is over – and throws their grimoire into the fire.

Ok… I call shenanigans and magic

The next day Joanna examines the burned tree left by the shapeshifter and is joined by Wendy – they see the symbol and recognise it as malus amplier. It draws in dark magic and amplifies it; she saw the same symbol in her dreams and where Bill Thatcher was killed. Wendy offers to help by Joanna refuses to use dark magic –the only thing that would help. Wendy also confronts her about the banishment lie, but Joanna wants her daughters to return to their normal, mortal lives free from magic and threat; she demands Wendy keep her daughters safe, away from magic.

Of course she doesn’t mean that and she starts training the sisters on the many ways of magic, the different talents witches have, what they can do and the different ways of doing magic. Wendy is instinctive –her magic comes from her “gut”, Freya emotional, so emotion powers her magic and Ingrid is cerebral, her power comes from her mind; and she wrote her own spells. And Joanna is a “total package” able to do just about everything at full strength – which she shows by quietly restoring the ashes of the grimoire back to the full book when she’s alone.

Dancing (Anita Blake #22.5) by Laurell K Hamilton

Anita, Micah and Nathaniel go to a BBQ at Zerbrowski’s house. People are mean to them. Anita explains the error of their ways.

And that’s not a euphemism for her shooting them.

There are a lot of major prejudices displayed in this book. The homophobia of forcing affection between two men to be hidden. The sexism, homophobia and rigid gender roles in declaring certain activities for girls or boys.  The treatment of sex workers as objects, not as people and of assuming all strippers are prostitutes. The idea that women are inherently weaker than men.

There’s a lot that are addressed here, all lined up and knocked down.

So what is my problem?

My first problem is the simplicity of it. People were mean prejudiced arseholes, Anita & co responded with some awkward PSAs to which everyone reacted with almost magical understanding. The bad prejudiced people either left having received their full comeuppance or were duly shamed and contrite.

The kids bullying the boy who dances for being gay all gather together and dance ballet by the end of the BBQ.

The parent who was happy with his son throwing gay as an insult has Anita say all sexualities are valid to him and then decides to be all ashamed and back down.

The women who were treating Nathaniel like meat all feel duly ashamed when Anita kisses him and make their apologies.

The one spreading lies about Nathaniel gets her comeuppance and goes home in a blazing row while everyone lines up to say how mean she is.

Anita even gets to tell a little girl that women can defend themselves as well, just randomly shoe-horned in there by a passing comment.

Nathaniel and Micah kiss – but keep it in the kitchen so as not to shock anyone while Zerbrowski says they’re cute together – the fact Zerbrowski isn’t offended is supposed to be a resolve here and there’s not even an attempt to address the fact that they need to confine themselves to the kitchen or any negative feelings or shame or anger – hey they get the kitchen and 2 out of the dozens of guests aren’t angry! YAY!

Once Upon a Time, Season 3, Episode 4: Nasty Habits

Peter Pan’s chief minion, Felix, has taken Neal captive to basically recap us on the fact that Neal/Baelfire was once a Lost Boy himself before Neal escapes.

We follow that with a flashback to the Enchanted Forest of child Baelfire and his dad, Rumplestiltskin. Rumple wants to buy Baelfire’s affection but the kid just wants to actually leave the house now and then – Rumplestiltskin is worried that one of his many many enemies might use Baelfire to get to Rumplestiltskin. Baelfire thinks that maybe Rumple is afraid he might leave like Baelfire’s mother, Milah.

Which brings us back to Neverland present and Gold painting slashes over his face – hallucination/projection/vision/whoknowswhat Belle appears for some psychoanalysis; Gold is more comfortable behind the mask of the monster (with Belle the only one who can see through it) and him putting it back on because he needs to be a monster to save Baelfire. Or he could reunite with the main group, pool his magic with Regina and reduce Pan to chunky salsa. This has my vote. Not Gold’s alas – Belle reminds him of the prophecy of Henry being his doom and that Gold probably won’t save him because Gold is, at heart, a selfish coward.  Gold disagrees because now he has nothing to live for but redemption – his son is dead (he is unaware of the denizens’ of the Enchanted Forest being surprisingly awesome at healing bullet wounds), he knows he’ll never return to Belle (the real one) and if he does she will eventually see him for what he is and leave; all he can do is save his grandson, his dead son’s son and sacrifice himself in the process.

Let us leave that epic mountain of angst to return to our heroes… oh gods must we? Back to the angst! Please!

Alas not; Emma is planning for their infiltration of Pan’s camp (and having real problems referring to Tinkerbell because, well, she’s called Tinkerbell). Tink warns them about the poison, which makes David all antsy, and then she realises that the dream team, consisting of 3 Charmings, hasn’t actually made any plan to get off the island, despite promising her a home and them having to escape Peter Pan. Yes, the plan is charge in and hope – of course it is. She’s less than pleased about this and shows them some things she pulled off Greg and Tamara’s bodies to prove how ruthless Pan is (Regina looks almost as gleeful over her torturers’ death as I would should David ever actually succumb to that poison).

Tinkerbell leaves until they come up with a plan that is, actually, a plan. Emma tells David to let her go because, well, she’s right. Hook only got off the island after making a deal with Pan he knows of only one person who got off the island against Pan’s wishes: Neal.

Elsewhere Gold uses his magic dust to knock out/kill 2 Lost Boys (really, after that monster speech, there’s no excuse to him not killing them) and runs into Neal. Gold is stunned to see his son – and assumes he’s a vision like Belle and goes on a full blown semi-unstable rant about his resolve to sacrifice himself for Henry. Until Neal calls him Papa that gets through Gold’s shaky grasp of reality.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Fangs for the Fantasy Podcast: Autumn 2013, Episode 3

It's time for another episode of our podcast, back again for the Autumn where we discuss our book of the week and some of the shows we've been following: Including The Walking Dead, Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Once Upon a Time, Once Upon a Time In Wonderland, American Horror Story, Revolution, Haven and likely several others all through our social justice analysis.

You can join us here and you can listen live on our youtube channel, here, or in our sidebar. All will also carry a recording after the show is finished. As ever all our previous podcasts can be found in the archive

The podcast begins at 7:00pm EST

Our next books of the week are:

21st October - 28th October: Mortal Danger by Eileen Wilks
28th October - 4th November: Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning
4th November - 11th November: The Snow Queen’s Shadow by Jim C Hines
11th November - 18th November: Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger
18th November - 25th November: Long Live the Queen by Kate Locke

We will be back at the same time, same place - 7:00pm EST, 11:00pm GMT - next Monday, 2th October

Red Hood's Revenge (Stepsister Scheme #3) by Jim C Hines

Roudette, infamous assassin, has a new target. Everyone assumes it’s Danielle and rallies to protect her – not suspecting that Talia is her main target

Nor that simple assassination is the last thing on her mind.

Caught up in a complicated, unimaginable scheme, Danielle, Talia and Snow White are transported to Arathea, Talia’s homeland. The land where she is still wanted for murder and a home she hasn’t seen for years.

And a land under threat. It’s a bittersweet homecoming and an extremely difficult and complex on – but Talia will save her people.

I love that we got more of the backstory of Talia in this book. We’d had some backstory on Snow but, ultimately, Danielle was the star of the series and it was her story, her family and her life that we focused on; inevitably this reduced the other 2 princesses to sidekicks. This was Talia’s book – and it was also a book that was heavily influenced by aspects of her character that in so many books in this genre would either not exist – or would be alluded to then quickly shuffled into a corner never to be seen again: namely that she is a Lesbian and a WOC.

We meet Talia’s first love, and it is love not lust, they have a relationship, they reconnect and Talia clearly values her as much as her friends Snow and Danielle. She isn’t secondary to them in Talia’s eyes and Talia risks all and deviates her quest in order to reconnect with her and save her. She matters to Talia and their scenes together make that clear – which makes their ending all the more frustrating.

Most of the book also takes part in Talia’s homeland – a Fantasy Middle Eastern parallel – which manages to get a considerable sense of culture and place without resorting to so many of the really tired, offensive stereotypes. There’s a lot of effort gone into making a full culture here, with a full history and populated by actual people. Not only are they not presented with many of the damaging stereotypes, but they’re free from exoticisation as well; yes Danielle and Snow are lost, but they’re presented as just that, people from a foreign land in an unfamiliar place. It helps that we see much of the story through Talia’s eyes and she has a real sense of familiarity and home coming which flies in the face of any attempt to present an alien, strange, exotic land.

The Walking Dead, Season Four, Episode Two: Infected

It's night at the prison and someone is feeding the zombies rats.  Inside the prison, Tyreese is making out with Karen and says that he cannot stop thinking about Zack and how people only know a handful of people.  He beings to sing to Karen and invites her to crash at his place but Karen says not just yet. Tyreese and Karen go their separate ways.   Karen heads into the latrine area and grabs some of the infected water to wash up.  When she hears a sound, she begins to search the area.  Zombie Patrick sits up, as Karen continues to move around the kitchen.  Karen makes her way to her cell, and lies down, unaware that Patrick is now roaming around.  Patrick stops in front of her cell but when he hears someone snoring, attacks them instead and bites their throat.  Now there are two zombies walking around the prison.

The next morning, Rick's alarm goes off at 6 AM and he wakes up Carl, as Patrick continues with his snack on D Block.  Rick hands over the baby, as zombie number two gets out of bed.  Glenn is watching Maggie sleep with a smile on his face.  He suddenly grabs his camera and takes a picture, waking Maggie up.  Where did he find that old Polaroid?  Glenn promises to bring Maggie breakfast after perimeter check and leaves. 

Michonne is getting ready to leave and Rick tells her to be careful.  Michonne asks why Carl doesn't wear the hat anymore and Carl says it's not a farming hat.  Rick and Carl then get to work in the garden but as always, the zombies are lining the fence.  Carl suggests helping to get rid of the zombies but Rick says that he has other plans for the day.  Carl asks if he can help but Rick plans to keep Carl working all day.  Carl tells Rick that he has been trying and wants to know when he can have his gun back.  Rick goes back to talking about the garden.  Suddenly, gunfire goes off and Rick goes running.  Michonne makes her way back to the prison and Carl lets her in.   Two zombies attack her and Carl grabs a shot gun.

All hell is breaking loose in the prison and Darryl, Carol, Rick and Glenn are doing their best to fight off the zombies.  Rick is handed a gun be he grabs a shovel instead. One kid runs, screaming that she has forgotten everything Carol has taught her.  Carol attempts to save one man by amputating his arm but notices that he been bitten in the back of the neck.  They manage to kill off the zombies and find Patrick.

The residents of the prison begin the clean, up as Carol wraps the belt around Ryan's arm.  Ryan tells Carol to care about his children because they don't have anybody else.  Carol promises to look out for them and asks if he is up to saying goodbye.

Rick examines Patrick and realises that he has no wounds and just died.  Hershel says that he choked to death on his blood.  They begin to debate how he died and realise that he was infected .Dr. Subramanian explains about how common these infections are.  Hershel says that pigs must have spread the disease.  They consider that bugs like to run through close quarters and Hershel points out that they have all been exposed. Why no one thought about how living so closely together could be a problem is beyond me.

Carol brings in the children to say goodbye to their father.  Ryan tells Lizzie to take care of her sister Molly.  Carol ushers them out the room and says she is going to do what she has to do.  Lizzie grabs Carol's hand saying that she should be the one.  Carol hands over the knife and says that Lizzie has to do it before he turns.  Lizzie starts to panic and Carol grabs the knife and sticks it in the Ryan's brain, as the children cry.

Maggie and Carl are helping a wounded Michonne. Rick approaches and as they surround them, he tells him to back away. Carl admit to using one of the guns by the gate. Maggie asks what happened in there and Rick tells them about Patrick.  Rick tells Carl that Patrick was a good kid and that they lost a lot of good people.  Rick adds that the shouldn't get close to anyone who was exposed.

At the meeting table, they realize they need to separate everyone. Hershel points out that the illness can be lethal. They suggest using death row to seperate the people.

Karen and Tyreese are walking and she starts to cough.  Glenn tells Karen that Patrick died of a flu.  Hershel says that anyone who has been exposed should stay away and asks people not to panic.  They promise to get Caleb to take a look at her.  Karen says that David has also been coughing. When Karen and Hershel leave, Hershel tells Darryl to wear gloves and a mask to deal with the dead.

Carol approaches the kids and says they are going to bury the father.  Carol tells them that she promised to protect them like she is their own.  Carol tells Lizze that she is weak and lost her nerve. Carol tells Lizzie if she wants to live she has to become strong.  Lizzie wonders if they are going to kill Nick.  In frustration, Molly says that Lizzie is messed up and not weak.

Fangs for the Fantasy Book of the Week

Every week on the Fangs for the Fantasy podcast (archives here) we read a book and discuss it on the show. The review for the book of the week always goes up on a Monday.

To give people a chance to read along with us, every Monday we’re also going to include a list of our planned books of the week for the next few shows, so people can get the books, read them and join in the conversation.

14th October - 21st October: Red Hood’s Revenge by Jim C Hines
21st October - 28th October: Mortal Danger by Eileen Wilks
28th October - 4th November: Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning
4th November - 11th November: The Snow Queen’s Shadow by Jim C Hines
11th November - 18th November: Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger
18th November - 25th November: Long Live the Queen by Kate Locke