Thursday, April 28, 2011

Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows, Part 2 Trailer

So much epic, I can't even describe it. Molly & Bellatrix! Tonks & Lupin! Ron & Hermione! The only thing I'm not sure about is Voldemort and Harry falling from the tower, which isn't canon, but I'll wait and see how it plays out on screen.


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

#Vilonia + Song of the Day

You can't have missed it if you follow me on Twitter, but storms and tornadoes have devastated my state this week, with more on the way. Right here in Faulkner County, 4 people are dead at last count, in the town of Vilonia, just down the road, after a tornado swept through last night. If you'd like to help, consider a donation to the Arkansas Red Cross. The folks at Rock City Outfitters are donating all proceeds from their fantastic Arkansas themed tees to the AR Red Cross, so check them out.

I'm dedicating the Song of the Day to all those affected by the storms: "I Shall Not Walk Alone" by Ben Harper & The Blind Boys of Alabama.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Vampire Diaries 2.19 "Klaus"


Here's where I make a few confessions. I don't care for flashback episodes of TVD. In general, I giggle at the clothes instead of enjoying them. I giggle at the accents. And the hair. Oh, the hair. I also don't tend to enjoy overly-talkie episodes. Like this one, where everyone talks endlessly about Klaus, his past, and how to kill him.

So really, what I'm saying is that I didn't enjoy this episode the way that a lot of people seemed to. But those people like flashbacks and mythology moments. I found it to be pretty meh, but obviously, it sets up some great action to come for the rest of the season.

Things I did like:
  • The Salvatore Brother showdown over Damon's feeling for Elena and their differing approaches to saving Elena.
  • I like that Jenna knows about vampires now. Curious to see how that plays out.
  • I like that Elena was so adamant about having a plan to save herself and that Stefan recognized her right to call the shots, even if he wanted to do it differently. 
  • I like that we saw Damon unravel a little bit. I don't always like Damon, but I'm nearly always fascinated by him.
This is a short entry, because I really just have such ambivalent feelings about the episode. For the most part, I shrugged off the major revelations. The fact that Klaus and Elijah are brothers didn't surprise me, but I didn't really expect the whole Klaus-is-a-werevamp thing. I just happen to have no strong feelings on the new mythology for the moment. Here's hoping I regain my enthusiasm next week.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Song of the Day

This came up yesterday on my iPod while I was shuffling through my library, and I hadn't heard it in a long time. One of my favorite JM tunes:

Vampire Diaries 2.18 "The Last Dance"


Holly's Alternate title: DAMN, DAMON DANCES. Hey, Ian Somerhalder, will you marry me? Or at least go out dancing with me? I could settle for that.

Quick and Dirty Recap: Klaus is in Alaric's body, going to school and trying to teach class while taunting Team Salvatore with hints of his presence. Everyone goes to the 60s Dance, Alaric's possession is revealed after he discovers the plan for Bonnie to kill him, and Damon and Bonnie team up to make Klaus think Bonnie is dead and no longer a threat. Also, Damon makes many good arguments and Elena takes action at the end, pulling the dagger out of Elijah, in her desperation to find a different way to kill Klaus.


I didn't love this episode as much as last week's, but I think that upon further viewing that may change. Last week's was such a twisty ride and this week's had some great action, but also some more subtle moments that you really have to absorb to realize their import.

As far as Klaus possessed Alaric, I really enjoyed getting to see Matt Davis flex his acting muscles and bring a new character to life. His scene where Klaus tries to teach Alaric's class was hilarious, as was his dancing at the 60s Dance. They're making Klaus very creepy (the kiss to Katherine's forehead) and terrifying (making Kat stab herself was unsettling, to say the least). However, I think they're also displaying how arrogant he is. I theorized while watching the episode that his ego might be his downfall, as he seemed to lose his temper a bit when people didn't recognize how powerful he is. It's possible that could be used against him in the in. Also, could be why so many people want to kill him.

Here's where I make a confession: Bonnie and Jeremy together isn't my cup of tea. In fact, I recoil every time I see them together. I just DO NOT see any chemistry there. I'd love to see them introduce a kickass non-Luka witch boyfriend for Bonnie and bring back Anna for Jeremy instead. It just feels like they put them together because they were both there and not related, and so every scene where Jeremy is angsty over what will happen to Bonnie falls flat for me.

Another confession: I didn't get upset at all when Bonnie "died." I was mostly convinced that it was a ruse anyway, after Damon's asking her if she was willing to do whatever it took. Also, as I said above, I just plain don't love the Bonnie character and if I had to pick someone to vote off the island, it'd be her. Hell, I'd rather keep Uncle Daddy. I'm okay with being in the minority on this, and its not a knock on Katerina Graham, who I think does an excellent job with what she's given. Every fan just isn't going to love every character. I will say that the final fight between Kalaric and Bonnie with the sparks flying was pretty badass, though, even if I figured Bonnie would make it out alive.

The best parts of the episode for me were the scenes where the show explored the contrast between Stefan & Damon and their approach to saving Elena. At the dance, we see clearly that Damon will sacrifice Bonnie if need be, while Stefan leans towards trying to save everyone. This leads to a confrontation on the stairs between the Brothers Salvatore over their differing strategies. Damon lays it out for Stefan with no remorse: Damon is the one who will do whatever it takes to save Elena and won't be deterred by collateral damage, and in the end, this means he'll be the one to save her life. Stefan obviously didn't enjoy having this pointed out and I'm certain that this will cause some brother angst as we head into the season finale.

Then there was the Damon & Elena scene that surely caused all the Delena shippers to implode. I'm not even a hardcore shipper and I was touched by Damon passionately telling Elena that he would let Bonnie die if he had to, because he "will always choose" Elena. Now, I don't necessarily think that Damon is truly in love with Elena, not yet anyway, but I think that he cares about her in a way that is different from the past women in his life, and I'm beyond excited to see where they are taking the Damon/Elena dynamic in the future. I don't have a preference for who Elena ends up with at the end of the show, if anyone, but I am in favor of the writers exploring the potential for love between these two when the time is right. I think Elena has a lot of reticence, for good reason, when it comes to Damon, but I also think that the kind of single-minded focus Damon displays when it comes to her can be alluring, as well as frightening. Its hard to ignore that kind of passion and not be somewhat drawn to it.

Stray Observations:
  •  I forgot the notebook that I made notes on after the episode, so if I forgot anything important, I'll post a follow up later today.
  • Elena picked a fine time to care about going to school.
  • I'm a little confused about the possession thing and which vampire powers Klaus' got to keep. He could compel vampires and people but didn't need an invitation to get in anywhere. Seemed too convenient.
  • I didn't touch on the Matt/Caroline stuff, because honestly, there was little movement there and it only served as a distraction from the other scenes. Still, they rocked those outfits and we did find out that Matt and the Sheriff know about Stefan and Damon being vampires, Tyler being a werewolf, and that the Gilberts are in the loop on it all.
  • Damon's dancing was my favorite thing, maybe ever. In my whole life. He had outrageous chemistry with both Elena and Bonnie and the random girls he was dancing with. I especially loved when Stefan smoothly twirled Elena towards Damon. Maybe I do have an OTP and its really a polyamorous Salvatore-Elena sandwich. 
  • Not. Now. Dana.
  • Elena glanced between Damon & Damon's bed before she left his room. Yes, honey, that's where the magic happens. Glad to see you're not immune. 
  • "I will always choose you." *swoon*

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Song of the Day

Is All American Rejects one of those bands I'm supposed to be ashamed of liking? I don't know, but they put on a great show at the Beale Street Music Fest in 2009. The lead singer is so obviously cracked out, but he's magnetic anyway.  This is one of my favorite songs they performed at that show.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Song of the Day: Electric Feel - MGMT

Love this song, perfect for the nice weather this afternoon.

The Vampire Diaries 2.17 "Know Thy Enemy"


Alternate title for this episode - the one where everyone double crosses Team Salvatore. Except Uncle Daddy John. *mind boggles*

Recap, Quick and Dirty: Isobel blows back into town, gets Jenna pissed at Alaric & Elena, double crosses everyone, turns Katherine, the moonstone & Alaric over to Klaus' warlock. She also makes sure Klaus knows where Elena is, before committing suicide by sunshine in front of her horrified daughter. Presumably, she was under compulsion for the majority of these acts. Bonnie, Damon, and Jeremy go to the site of the witches fiery demise so that Bonnie can harness her power. Its revealed that the power it will take for her to kill Klaus will likely kill her. Caroline searches everywhere for Matt, and when she finally tells him the truth about what's been happening, he demands she compel him to forget everything. Only then do we find out he's working with Sheriff!Mom and told her everything Caroline told him. The final twist was that Alaric was kidnapped by Isobel & the (white!) warlock in order to be possessed by Klaus. We leave off with Klaus-in-Alaric having custody of the moonstone and Kat.

Best Quotes:
Damon: Don't mistake the fact that we haven't set you on fire in your sleep for trust.

Damon: I'll be super pissed if you lock me out.

Observations, Theories, and Questions:
Why was there a house built on top of where the witches were burned? Surely the house wasn't there when they burned them.

The soap dish, Damon, really? That was either really smart or really freaking dumb, I'm not sure.

How much did Caroline tell Matt? Just about her vampire experience or about Damon, Stefan, etc? If the sheriff does know about Stefan and Damon, will the council now come after them or will they manage to get Liz & Matt on Team Salvatore?

I think a lot of people probably liked Angry Matt but I was just really frustrated with his betrayal of Caroline. Intellectually, I can understand his motivation, but my love for Caroline colors my view of his and the sheriff's alliance.

Will killing Klaus kill Bonnie? Obviously in her mind, the havoc that would be wreaked by Klaus & other vamps being able to walk in the day is worth giving her life.

Isobel's death was kind of heartbreaking, even though she wasn't a good guy. We may never know if she would have betrayed Elena and Katherine on her own or if she was a victim of Klaus more than her own evil.

I don't want to like Uncle John but David Anders forces me to some times. His telling Elena why he wanted to believe in Isobel and volunteering to do whatever Elena wanted was such a genuine moment for him. I'm guessing they'll make us like him just in time for him to sacrifice himself for his daughter.

I didn't see the whole Alaric possession thing coming AT ALL. However, it makes sense if Klaus is looking to get close to Team Salvatore and figure out how to get Elena. From the preview for next week though, the possession doesn't remain a secret for long. I'm terribly afraid that getting Klaus out of Alaric will kill him, and I'd hate to lose Matt Davis, but all signs point to Alaric checking out by end of season.

Weird theory: we know that an actor was cast for Klaus and we've seen an episode still of him, in period garb, obviously a flashback, so now I wonder if the actor will ever play Klaus in the modern time or if its possible that will be the flashback Klaus only and Alaric/Klaus will be around for a while. Also, is the possession of Alaric a recent idea from Team Klaus or does Alaric have a past with them that we (and perhaps he) doesn't know about?

Friday, April 8, 2011

Friday Morning Links

A little vampires, a little politics:

AV Club's review of last night's all new Vampire Diaries "Know Thy Enemy"

Cindy's Weecap of TVD over at Television Without Pity

NYT Editorial on the government shutdown: "It's Not Really About Spending"

It's got nothing to do with vampires or politics, but the latest John Green vlogbrothers video made me laugh a lot:

Stay tuned, my TVD review will be up later today.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

When Shippers Lose Their Shit

So this article with Vampire Diaries writer Julie Plec was posted today on the LA Times site.

And then Plec's Twitter timeline exploded with hatred.

Anyone with a modicum of reading comprehension skills can read that article and realize that Plec was specifically commenting on Stefan's state of mind when she referred to Damon as an obstacle. Stefan wants to be with Elena, Damon wants to be with Elena, this means that Damon is in Stefan's way to an extent (see the definition of obstacle). Plec didn't say she hated Damon/Elena or that it wouldn't happen, just that it would obviously not be in Stefan's game plan. However, shippers don't really do the whole 'take things in context' thing.

I thought I'd share a few of my favorites from the Twitter explosion for your viewing pleasure.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Happy New Book Day!

Two new books out today that I've been eagerly anticipating: City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare and Red Glove by Holly Black.

City of Fallen Angels is the fourth book in Clare's massively popular The Mortal Instruments Series. I devoured the first three books in the series late last year, along with the first book in Clare's companion series (The Infernal Devices), Clockwork Angel. I love, love Clare's sarcastic hero, Jace, and her dialogue. Basic premise of the series: Shadowhunters are part angel, part human warriors who protect the world from demons. They exist along side vampires, werewolves and warlocks. The series centers on teen Clarissa "Clary" Fray as she discovers the world of Shadowhunters and her place within it.

Red Glove is the sequel to Black's White Cat, both part of her Curse Worker's series. White Cat was by far the most original and riveting book I read this year so far. Its dark and twisty and its hero, Cassel, is basically what I imagine Rusty from Ocean's 11 was like as a teen. Basic premise: Hero (or anti-hero, which might be more fitting) Cassel comes from a family of curse workers, people who can influence your emotions, your luck, your body by touching you. His family and their friends are all basically in the mafia, and he's a con artist.

If you're interested in either of these series, pick up City of Bones by Clare and White Cat by Black, the first books in these series.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Song of the Day: Break the Chain - Lupe Fiasco

Today is the NCAA Men's National Championship Game, where No. 3 UConn will battle it out against No. 8 Butler. I'll be rooting for Butler, just as I did last year when they so very nearly beat Duke. I got Lupe Fiasco's album, Lasers, last week and immediately recognized the song "Break the Chain" from being played on Sportscenter. Its a perfect song for March Madness highlights and a great song of the day for the National Championship. Enjoy!