Tag Archives: HBO

Game of Thrones: History in the making


(Series 6, ep. 3) If you haven’t been watching series 6 and you don’t want to know what’s happened so far, stop reading now! There may well be some hideous spoilers below. You’ve been warned.  Continue reading

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Game of Thrones: Dragons, dogs and direwolves

roose ramsay game of thrones(Series 6, ep. 2) SPOILER ALERT: I’m not going to be able to review this at all without totally ruining it for anyone who hasn’t seen it, so if you don’t want to know, please don’t go any further. Stop reading now Continue reading

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Game of Thrones: Breathless catch up

jon snow game of thrones

(Series 6, ep. 1) Game of Thrones is back, and there’s much rejoicing throughout the land – at least that segment of the land which (a) has access to Sky Atlantic and (b) gives two hoots.

If you give two hoots and haven’t seen it yet, don’t read on, because it’ll ruin it for you (SPOILERS AHEAD!!!) Continue reading

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Game of Thrones: Still no winner in sight

daenerys game of thrones(Ep.21)  When I read the first Game of Thrones book, it was a real page-turner. I wanted to know who was victorious in the war, who succeeded Robert Baratheon on the Iron Throne – basically, who won? I reckoned without the writing stamina of George RR Martin, who seems determined to go on forever before reaching any kind of resolution. As the books went on, my interest in them went off. There was too much walking from one place to another, too many lovingly-described meals. Also I felt a bit cheated of anything resembling a satisfying conclusion, funny old-fashioned (short attention-spanned) thing that I am.

Luckily, the TV adaptation doesn’t suffer from these problems, because they’ve managed to distil the action and organise things so there’s more going on in a 75 minute (including ad breaks) episode than you can shake a stick at. We’re onto Series 3 now, and it’s staying true to form in the sense that when the EPG mentions “nudity and upsetting scenes,” you can bet that’s what you’re going to get. The nudity was fairly low-key in this season opener (a token topless whore) and the most upsetting thing was a eunuch soldier having his nipple sliced off to prove how hard he was. He was so hard he didn’t scream or cry, but thanked the nasty man doing the slicing for the opportunity to be of service. A bit like The Apprentice when someone gets fired.

Daenerys was after buying 8,000 of these Unsullied. With an army of such ruthless single-mindedness and brutality, she reckoned it would be easy-peasy to get the Iron Throne back. She hasn’t met Cersei Lannister yet, however. Will 8,000 eunuchs really be a match for the Cersei Lannister Stare?

North of the Wall, Jon Snow met up with the infamous Mance Rayder. Is his first name short for Romance? Having seen him, I doubt it, though he does seem about 100% more cuddly and human than Joffrey.

Posted by PLA          (more Game of Thrones here)


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Game of Thrones: Season 2 trailer!

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Mildred Pierce: Monty, Carlo and bust

(Episode 5) Way back when, episode two in fact, a chap noted that it was difficult to get a rise out of Mildred Pierce because of the high quality writing and production. Also mentioned was the need to scour the later pages of James M Cain’s source novel to indulge in some gentle teasing; such were the more ludicrous plot devices presented to his readers. This raised faint hopes of the same cathartic idiocy in the final part of this series.

Are we there yet, CL? Oh yes, my little corumblings.

Last week we left Mildred unhappy but free from her wellsprings of weakness and downfall: Mad Veda and The Man Who Was Del Monty. Veda has left home in a strop (it was a mink strop, having exhausted her extensive wardrobe of huffs) to explore the downtown existence of an uber-diva. An advance guard of contrived silliness here, being as she has never sung a note in her life. Meanwhile Monty has been jettisoned on account of being a bit of a nuisance in the accounts; his first, then Mildred’s [note to feminine side: aristocratic gigolo with pencil moustache and cheek-bones built for glacier skiing bad for wallet).

The final episode opens with Mildred stalking Carlo Treviso, the famous conductor with whom Veda is pursuing her nascent career of operatic parping. She wants to pay the bills but Carlo, having been briefed, refuses to take orders from the mother ship. He also offers a baroque homily about coloratura sopranos, a trillful elite among whom Veda is the trilliest. This pep talk is a little hard to follow – still less quote – so here are my notes verbatim: “See little snake at zoo. Very pretty. Take home? Not sensible. Girl is snake. Coloratura much worse than snake. I no enjoy snake bite.”   Continue reading


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Mildred Pierce: Mother and child disunion

(Ep.4) Let’s re-cap: Mildred Pierce is a grass widow (ie no present husband) in the sun-drenched California Depression. She has three men, two daughters and a chicken shack on the go. She also has a pair of loyal girlypals who, unlike the others, are constant in both friendship and number.

You see the menfolk are currently down to two, Wally and ex-husband Bert, because The Man Who Was Del Monty – who pressed all, and I mean all, of her buttons – Mildred dumped on a dark and stormy night. She’s a daughter down as well, the grippe officially (that’s flu don’t yoo knoo) but it could have been because there were chickens in need of a wholesome nosh during the run-up to Mildred opening her first restaurant. This last soon bucks the unlucky streak because it’s “going gangbusters” and there are now two, soon to be three outlets. It’s at this third where we find our Ms Pierce this week …

The new joint’s way out in Laguna, a place I know little of other than it’s where you catch tuna; and that only through one of my desert island discs, the gloriously escapist Let’s get away from it all.  Mildred’s found a rather spiffy seafront spot and she’s going to let best friend Lucy live there and run it with a share of the profits thrown in. Ida, the pal she met in the LA branch of Bettys Tea Rooms is already running Chicken Biz II in Beverly Hills. Lucy is so overwhelmed by the kindness she invents “Surf & Turf,” having decided that big city rich people aren’t going to nip out to the beach for chicken.   Continue reading


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