Weekly Digest – TV Special

While avoiding the World Cup and not watching Love Island, I’ve been doing far more intellectually significant things, obviously, such as watching these naked, lying under a fan and eating Wispas.

GLOW – Season 2

Liberty Bell and friends are back in the ring though things are far from plain sailing for any of them. Ruth (Alison Brie) becomes a problem for Sam (Marc Maron) when she gets ideas above her station and directs a really quite good promo video for the GLOWs. She also flirts with a cameraman and tries to rebuild her friendship with Debbie/Liberty (Betty Gilpin), which is easier said than done.

Deb, meanwhile fights for her Producer role (and to be heard as a woman) and is forced to examine the message the GLOWs are sending out to America when it is accused of being too sexy. Meanwhile, Sam struggles with newfound fatherhood and the girls are required to compete with one another to get in the show week on week, which causes friction, who knew.

GLOW is wonderful Technicolor goodness all round – bright, female popcorn viewing and it’s an easy watch, which means a lot on a Sunday afternoon.

The Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling

Good Girls

I’m already fully addicted to Good Girls, the Mae Whitman/Retta/Christina Hendricks starring comedy/drama about three mothers struggling to make ends meet. When they knock off a grocery store they could never dream they’d end up on such a roller-coaster ride, inadvertently involved with gangsters and trying to get straight despite every single obstacle that keeps popping up.

Or are they about to go a different way? If Beth’s head for lady boss business has anything to do with I think we have our answer.

The women are amazing, not only dealing with the drama but also their own lives. Beth is working through the aftermath of her husband of 20 years’ affair plus four children; Ruby has a sick daughter and needs to find a way to pay for experimental treatment, while Annie and her daughter Sadie have to face bullying as Sadie works out who she is.

It’s fantasy stuff I suppose but it’s fun and I like fun.

Preacher – Season 3/Luke Cage – Season 2

I’m only one episode in on each other these but so far so good.

Luke (Mike Colter) is a celebrity right now in his neighbourhood and Harlem is abuzz with his heroics. How long will this last and what are Mariah (Alfre Woodard) and her reluctant man toy Shades (Theo Rossi) up to? Meanwhile, Misty Knight (Simone Missick) comes to terms with the loss of her arm (pretty well if the above image is anything to go by) – and something terrible is surely about to happen for Claire (Rosario Dawson) and Luke because they’re so blissfully happy together. I can’t handle it!

While I am quite done with the Marvel Netflix shows, I really enjoyed the last Luke Cage and some of the episodes are directed by some great female directors, including Lucy Liu and Kasi Lemmons. Can’t say cooler than that.

As for Preacher, Jesse (Dominic Cooper) and Cassidy (Joseph Gilgun) rush to save the life of Tulip (Ruth Negga) as is hangs in the balance. Sadly this requires the assistance of Jesse’s heinous family and some supernatural ju-ju. What could possibly go wrong? I’m delighted we’ve finally got to this point in Preacher, in the graphic novel my favourite parts revolve around the swamp lands and Jesse’s evil grandmother (played by Split‘s Betty Buckley). So consider me sitting here with high hopes.

What are you watching?

We Are Still Here (Film) Review

She was definitely going as Freddy that Halloween, she didn’t care what anyone said

After the neon punch of last week’s GLOW documentary and our vow to honour the GLOTBC (The Gorgeous Ladies of the Blog Collab)this choice might seem a little tenuous in its connection. But wait!

It happens to star the very lovely Barbara Crampton, whose horror CV reads like a damn dream. She’s also the mother in You’re Next, a great film I recently revisited. So we’re still on track and I’m sorry if that’s not enough for you. As Jill said when I suggested this film, “It’s our blog collab, so if we say it fits, it fits!”. So… it fits.

Special shout out to my friend Daisy who Facebooked me to ask if I’d seen this, thus inspiring me to pick it. (Turns out I had seen it before but forgotten).

*Beware Spoilers*

We Are Still Here (2015)

IMDB Synopsis

In the cold, wintery fields of New England, a lonely old house wakes up every thirty years – and demands a sacrifice.
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“Look, I know you’re sad, but we need to talk about that hat.”

My Review

Can someone cut Anna and Paul Sacchetti (Andrew Sensenig) a fucking break?

Having recently lost their son Bobby in a car accident, the couple move to snowy New England to heal their wounds and, if possible, learn to move on. Unfortunately, they choose to buy the creepiest house in the state, which they pick up for steal (red flag, anyone?) and soon Anna begins to sense they aren’t alone there.

Paul, who I actually love, is not so convinced and at times finds it hard to deal with his wife’s grief and deep depression. He can be dismissive which is difficult to watch but I understand it. The poor guy’s in mourning too. I just want them to make it tbh which might be jumping the gun this early on in the film but fuck it.

So there they are, trying to settle in while things go bump in the night (and day). These small (to begin with) things could be explained away I guess, which is why nobody seems that bothered yet. And Anna, of course, finds the presence of her son comforting.

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They both just really like turtlenecks, okay?

That is until Dave, a well-meaning community member (nope) and his wife Cat stop by one evening. Dave delights in unveiling the true history of the house, while Cat looks so distraught I’d have been packing a bag before she’d even finished her first sentence. (Not that Dave allows her to say much).

In short, the house was a funeral home built in the 1800s by the Dagmar family, who were run out of town when it was revealed that they were selling the corpses and burying empty caskets. As you do.

As their uninvited visitors leave, Cat passes Paul a note that says “This house needs a family. Get Out”.

Strangely, the couple stay put. Even when there’s a horrible accident in the basement concerning their electrician. Run Paul and Anna, RUN LIKE THE WIND! They do invite some friends to stay though, which Paul reluctantly agree to for Anna’s sake, though they aren’t his cup of tea.

May (the lovely Lisa Marie) and Jacob (Larry Fessenden) are hippies whose son, Harry (Michael Patrick Nicholson) was Bobby’s roommate. May is also something of a spiritual conduit and Anna has the idea that she can shed more light on the energy she’s been feeling in the house. Paul’s not keen on Jacob because he’s a stoner. LOL.

When the couple arrives, the four of them head into town for a bite to eat while they wait for Harry and his girlfriend (Kelsea Dakota) to get in. Things in the local bar/restaurant get weird as fuck as the community visibly loses its mind about the new residents. In particular, the bar owner who pumps the waitress for information about the couple now living in the Dagmar’s home.

“Smile love, it might never hap… oh.”

While the adults enjoy an icy reception over chicken in a basket, Harry and Daniella arrive at the house and let themselves in, where they proceed to make out as all young people do. This does not bode well for the lovers unfortunately, and the horror house does what horror houses do best.

Later, we learn a bit more folklore about the house (the whole 30 year cycle set up) and exactly what that kind of sacrifice entails but I’m not giving it all away. No sir. Needless to say it’s crazy shit.

Back at the house, May and Jacob are unaware of the fate of their son. They all experience spooky things in the middle of the night and when they reconvene at the breakfast table, May tells Anna that there is a presence in the house and that it wants her to think it’s Bobby.

The women go out and Jacob instigates a seance against May’s strict instructions. As with most of the decisions made so far in this movie, this is not heading for a fluffy outcome. The men make contact with the antagonist Dagmar himself but is he really that bad of a guy – and is there more to his story?

Cat would certainly have Anna and Paul believe so but does her final warning come too late? I shall park this here because it gets right good here.

Will our middle aged protagonists make it through the day/night when the whole town turns on them? And who should they really fear anyway? The smokey burning people in the cellar or The Neighbourhood Fucking Watch?

My Thoughts

You’ve got red on you, Anna

This film is really good looking. It’s also well acted and paced in a way I enjoy. There are scares but they’re slower burners (pun intended) rather than Paranormal Activity jumps. It’s seriously creepy is what I mean and also empathic to the subject of grief and depression.

There’s a stunning scene in the cellar when Anna experiences what she perceives as a moment with her late son, and it’s a heartbreaker.

Both Anna and Paul are amazing I think and I really bought them as a grieving couple who love each other despite all the sadness surrounding them. I also appreciate how they gel with Jacob and May.

I enjoy the gore too, when it kicks off it gets very bloody. Effect wise it’s not bad. This film probably isn’t for everyone but I totally dig its themes and general aesthetic.

St. Tropez’ new sunscreen commercial was very close to the bone

My Rating

4/5. Good and effective. Perhaps not the scariest film on Netflix as Netflix might have you believe but bloody creepy all the same.
What did Jill think of this one? Would she move out as soon as spend a night in it, or blindly forgive it all its flaws? Find out here.

GLOW: The Story of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (Film) Review

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Something really special is happening on our blogs this month as Jillian and I embark on a new series: GLOTBC – The Gorgeous Ladies of the Blog Collab! Any excuse right?

We’ll pay homage to some kick-arse Queens in all genres of movie and really where better to start than here, with this kitschy techno dreamscape of a documentary? It is surely impossible not to love, warts and all.

GLOW: The Story of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (2012)

IMDB Synopsis

GLOW: The Story of The Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling chronicles the rise and fall of the first ever all-female wrestling show through the stories of those who lived it.

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YAAAASSSSS

My Review

Jill and I were all over the Alison Brie starring Netflix series GLOW as soon as it debuted a month or so ago. Sure it’s prime popcorn viewing but who doesn’t need that at the end of a busy working week? Plus, it’s fun to choose favourites (Machu Picchu! Machu Picchu!) and imagine how you’d fare in the ring (not very well, I’m sure).

But GLOW is no fictional daydream, it was once a very real female-only sport and entertainment phenomenon. Sadly, it was axed from the television in 1990 – at the height of its popularity. What the heck is that about? Why can’t we just have nice things? (We’re getting it back though, aren’t we? That’s what all this revival is about, surely?)

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Tinkerbell would have done anything to get back to The Lost Boys again

This honestly delightful and heart-warming documentary charts the ebb and flow of the the GLOW, from initial conception to the bitter end, by way of lovely stories about some of the biggest names in female wrestling (or if not wrestling the sport, wrestling TV).

We spend quality time with raw steak guzzler (and my personal hero) Matilda the Hun (Dee Booher), Big Bad Mama (Lynn Braxton) and the most adorable woman on the planet, Mt. Fiji (Emily Dole).

We spend time on the early years of GLOW, remembering the outfits, the on-air feuds, the boke-inducing bone breaking injuries, (ooof!), the rapping (a highlight), the Hefner signed Playboy centerfolds but above all, the genuine love and warmth between these remarkable women. And they are remarkable, because who honestly would have the balls to do what they did?

We then catch up with the women as they fill us in on their lives since GLOW and how good/bad life has been to them in the interim. It’s powerful stuff, I won’t lie. Some women have thrived, while others have been through the ringer. But when they reunite, it’s nothing short of beautiful.

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Real love

Mt. Fuji in particular is a force. Now wheelchair bound and diabetic, she’s still a ray of pure sunlight who loves her sisters and admits to a long time crush on the show’s creator, Matt Cimber in front of everybody.

My personal favourite, Matilda the Hun wrestled until she was fifty and then went into directing and producing wrestling videos. Other careers off the back of GLOW are costume design, real estate and acting – but it seems nearly all of these Lycra-clad babes still have a place in their heart for their rough and tumble pasts.

It just seems to me that GLOW must have been such an incredible thing to be part of, a safe place that made male wrestlers jealous and gave these woman a platform to be truly incredible. They would have been incredible anyway but consider the industry these women found themselves in. It was no mean feat to find such a place to belong and to prosper.

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Yeah same, same

My Thoughts

What’s not to adore? These women are the best.

I must say there were times I felt a little bit awkward about the OTT stereotyping of the wrestlers in GLOW (Netflix) but this makes it clear that they were inspired by real life characters (not right always but I get it). It would be very interesting to witness what this generation’s GLOW characters would be like.

I’m truly so uplifted. Now pass the motherfucking Kohl!

My Rating

5/5. For the fun and the feminism. 

What did the woman of my dreams Jillian think? Would she clothesline the shit out of this or tap it out after ten? Find out here

Ps. What would your GLOW name be? I’d be Ginger Snax 💪🏻👌🏻

Weekly Digest #2

This week’s cool things.

Three in a bed and the little one said… “Weren’t you in Mama Mia?”

New Preacher

I didn’t love Preacher’s first season but I think that’s only because its source material is one of my absolute favourites. I guess it’s taken me a while to get my head around the casting as I’d always pictured the central trio as older and more weathered.

I was also vexed that they appeared to have skipped over Preacher’s family history. However, it looks from the first episode of Season 2 that it might be moving in that direction now and I’m delighted. The opening sequence is sublime . 👌🏻

Fingers crossed.

Slightly more picturesque than anywhere on the 22 route

Being a Bus Wanker

My new job requires me to catch a bus to and fro – and I’m not hating it. The journey’s only about 20 minutes each way and it’s amazing daydreaming/podcast listening/lipstick applying time.

Basically, I pretend I’m Julia Roberts in Sleeping with the Enemy being delivered to her new independent life on a Greyhound every morning. Try it.

Rihanna’s Wild Thoughts look

RiRi is absolutely breathtaking always but I love her tropical look in this. Heart eyes for dayz.

Foundations by Kate Nash

The whole Foundations album is a joy imho and having Kate turn up in GLOW (mentioned in last week’s digest) has made me want to reacquaint myself with her cheery pop.

IDGAF.

What are you digging this week?

Weekly Digest #1

With the dawn of a new job, I want to start getting into the swing of regularly writing posts that aren’t movie reviews (though obviously that will continue).

I’ve swiped the title for this series from Hannah of Ponderous Pieces because I’m a massive copy cat and couldn’t think of a better one.

Welcome to Week 1. These are the things I’m into this week:

Jeremy Corbyn 

He’s the one, pure and simple. He just talks sense as far as I see it and he’s cool, mucks in, talks to the people and makes his own jam. He’s the hero this country needs and deserves – and for the first time in maybe ever, I have hope in my heart for the future of this country.

#forthemanynotthefew

GLOW

Or Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. This show is addictive as hell and features Kate Nash. That might be all you need to know but there are also many other great things to note: fab 80’s costuming, beautiful ladies of every shape, size and ethnicity (so far they’re all being stereotyped, I hope this changes) and a central character that we’re actually supposed to hate on. Pass the motherfucking Lycra, yo.

I might write more about this show at a later date.

Lottie London Mermaid Glow

I got mine for £5.95 and it’s super pretty. Especially when you first transfer it to the brush. Glow, baby, glow!

Tesco Metros had really changed their look

Lost River 

Ryan Gosling‘s directorial debut from a few years back and I’ve only just got to it. I really enjoyed it. It has a dystopian feel with a stellar cast (Christina Hendricks, Iain De CaesteckerSaoirse Ronan) and tells the story of an underwater town that has a magical hold on the areas surrounding it (or does it?). It is much better than I’ve made it sound, promise!

New Beginnings

I’m a sucker for new beginnings. Fresh notebooks, clean sheets, new handbags – all those things that are just waiting to be filled (and messed up)! I’ve got one now with my new job and new colleagues, and I’m excited to see what the future holds (plus I’m maybe just a little bit nervous!)

What are you digging this week?

Thanks Hannah for the inspo and see you all next week.