Color me surprised!

I noticed my DVR was recording last night.  Unsure of what I was recording, I checked it out, and to my delight,  Riders of Berk had a one-hour premiere.    And here I’d been wondering what to watch on a Sunday evening.

The show was basically two separate episodes, so I’m not sure if these will be repeated later this week, or if they were something extra.  The first episode dealt with the unruliness of  the dragons, eating all the crops and setting buildings on fire accidentally.  The second explored blacksmith Gobber’s attempts to cope in a world where metal weapons were no longer needed to slay dragons.

Both episodes were cute and I found myself laughing out loud several times.  Perhaps my favorite moment was Hiccup telling Toothless that, among other things, Gobber taught Hiccup what he needed to know to make Toothless’s tail.  I was quite pleased how they highlighted the Hiccup/Toothless relationship.  In fact, all the other teens have grown quite fond of their dragons.

I was curious about the voice talent.  I was confident Gerard Butler wasn’t available (or too costly) for Stoic.  But Hiccup, Astrid, Fishlegs and Tuffnut were voiced by their movie counterparts (Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, and TJ Miller respectively).  Notably absent were those who’ve hit the Big Time, Jonah Hill (Snotlout) and Kristen Wiig (Ruffnut).  I was surprised Craig Ferguson wasn’t voicing Gobber, but he does have a full-time gig with his talk show.

But they did get some great “new” talent:   Tim Conway plays a dim-witted, silly Viking, and Stephen Root voices Mildew, the village grump.  And I see from IMDB that Mark Hamill is set to play Alvin.  I hope Alvin remains the “poor-but-honest farmer” introduced in Cressida Cowell’s second book “How to Be a Pirate.”  Oh, this should be fun!

(Disclaimer:  Way too many actors mentioned in this post to tag them all.  Sorry if I skipped one of your favorites!)


Ready, Set, Record!

This coming Tuesday, Sep 4, Cartoon Network premieres DreamWorks Dragons: Riders of Berk at 7:30 p.m. Eastern (6:30 Central).  The series is a spinoff of my favorite movie of all time, How to Train Your Dragon.  I’m so excited!

You may or may not know of my affintiy for dragons, and (Night Fury) Toothless is my most favorite cinematic critter ever.  I just hope the series is more like the actual movie than the short  “Legend of the BoneKnapper” (included in some DVD sets).  I attribute BoneKnapper’s mediocrity to minimal Toothless screentime, so as long as I get my fill of Toothless with the series, I’ll be happy.

If you’ve never seen How to Train Your Dragon, rent it it immediately!  Or better yet, buy the DVD.   You will not be disappointed.   It is the most delightful and poignant movie.  Everything about it is downright perfect.  Yes, it’s quite different from the books (which are also terrific), but it’s a wonderful story in its own right and I guarantee you’ll enjoy it (if not love it as much as I do).

“Private” thoughts

Uh-oh.  I’ve begun watching Private Practice.  This may not seem like a big deal, but as a fan of Supernatural, it is.  I refused to watch Grey’s Anatomy on principle because it used to air at the same time as Supernatural.  (In fact, Supernatural itself made fun of Grey’s Anatomy, calling it  “Dr. Sexy, M.D.” on more than one occasion.)  And since Private Practice is a Grey’s Anatomy spin-off, it was verboten by association.

Then Benjamin Bratt joined the cast.  I was so out of touch with these medical shows, I didn’t even realize it until the season was half over.

Is the show good?  Not particularly.  Is it realistic?  Hell, no!  But I was so glad to see Bratt back on tv, playing a likeable character (unlike William Banks of The Cleaner) I didn’t really care.   And making him romantically available (unlike Rey Curtis from Law & Order) doesn’t hurt.

I mention all this because the show has left me with a profound yearning to move to L.A.  What’s surprising is that it’s not that far fetched—I could do it!  I have a friend from college who lives in Long Beach.  And I’d actually be able to afford a modest place to live.  Granted, it wouldn’t be Addison’s beach-side place since since I don’t have $100 mil or so lying around.

But would I really want to live in the land of the perputally young and beautiful people?  I’m not a high-maintenance type of person, so I’d probably feel out of place.  Perhaps this intense desire for a body of water is my heart’s way of telling me to move to Clear Lake (Iowa).  I always considered it Iowa’s answer to L.A.,  perhaps it’d be a nice compromise, with the added bonus of Hawkeye football and changing seasons.  😉

Sunday Seven – # unknown

I recently (re-)bought the DVDs for the first season of Supernatural.  The reason is here.  To mark the occasion, I was going to do a “Seven Favorite Season 1 Supernatural Episodes.”  Then I thought,Wait there’s so much more than just favorite episodes!  And so I give you:

A banner of Supernatural's Dean & Sam Winchester

Just one of may Supernatural banner's on my computer

Seven Possible Supernatural-related Sunday Seven Lists

  1. Seven favorite episodes—by season, because I couldn’t limit my total choices to just 7
  2. Seven favorite guest characters—again, by season
  3. Seven favorite lines—yes, by season
  4. Seven favorite scenes—yep, by season
  5. Seven favorite monsters—not sure if it would be by season or overall
  6. Seven favorite songs— this might have to be overall, since there’s been less choices in more recent years.
  7. Seven favorite locations—of course, anything with Iowa will get my vote first.  🙂

Sunday Seven twofer!

HBO’s Game of Thrones ended last week.  It’s one of those stories based on a series of epic fantasy novels, sort of like Robert Jordan’s “Wheel of Time” series or the “Sword of Truth” books by Terry Goodkind.  Except that they’re infinitely better written. (Ok, that’s just my opinion based on my personal experiences with the novels, but I stand by it!)  🙂

I’d never heard of George R.R. Martin’s book, but HBO was promoting the hell out of it.  And I thought it might fill the medieval fantasy void left after season 3 of Merlin ended.  So, today, I present:

Seven Things I’ll Miss about Game of Thrones

  1. The opening credits and theme song.  Regal and as big and ambitious as the series.  I keep thinking it’d make a good ballroom dancing song.
  2. Eddard (Ned) Stark.  Played by Sean Bean, he was the only honorable man in a world of political backstabbing.
  3. John Snow.  Ned Stark’s bastard son, whom Ned loved and raised with his legitimate family—much to the chagrin of his wife. He’s the classic tortured soul, although some would call him a whiner.
  4. Catelyn Stark (speaking of Ned’s wife).  She’s an almost-middle-aged woman with a significant, meaty role to play.  It’s refreshing to see a such a woman treated as a main character and not simply relegated to a supporting role.
  5. Tyrion Lannister.  A dwarf of almost royal blood.  Again, I love that he’s a fully fleshed out character and not played for laughs—although he does get some of the best lines.  Played by Peter Dinklage, he’s one of the smartest (if not the smartest) characters in the series.  Just don’t ask him to go into battle.
  6. Arya Stark.  Ned’s younger daughter, the “spunky” tomboy who can shoot an arrow straighter than her brothers.  Yes, she’s a bit of a stereotype, but she’s an excellent stereotype.
  7. Direwolves.  I’m not sure what the “dire” means, but they’re basically played by wolves.  The direwolf is the symbol of the Stark family, and all 6 children (yes, including the bastard) are given one as a pet.

Seven Things I Won’t Miss

  1. All the blood & guts.  Literally, guts.  When men are sliced through, their intestines spill out.
  2. Queen Cercei Lannister, played by the awesome Lena Headey.  Evil bitch!
  3. Emilia Clark’s boobs.  I’m no prude, but enough is enough.
  4. Ros the prostitute’s bikini wax.  See #3 above.
  5. Joffrey Baratheon.  Cercei’s son.  Little shit!
  6. Peter Baelish,  aka Littlefinger (snicker, snicker).  Ass.
  7. Being manipulated to love the “good” characters and hate the “bad” ones.  I feel so dull.  Why can’t I like at least one not-so-good guy (or gal)?

Batting .ooo

TV is not my friend.

Since I hadn’t watched any Supernatural during the repeats, I decided to speed-watch “Appointment in Samarra” last night prior to tuning in to the new episode.  I finished the repeat late (which I like to do so I can fast-forward through the commericials), and what do I get for my troubles?  Nikita!  *pffft*!  Worse, because the cable guide still said Supernatural, my DVR recorded it.  Bah!

At least SyFy had the decency to note that Merlin was being unceremoniously usurped by Being Human, so the DVR didn’t fire up.  (And they did a mini-Merlin-marathon on Tuesday, so I got to watch some season 1 episodes I’d never seen before, including the series premiere.)

I watched the premiere of Being Human last week, and honestly, it’s not very good.  I swear the only reason it’s a hit is because of Sam Witwer, who gained a following on Smallville a few seasons back.  Because really?  The other two lead actors are pretty crappy.  At least Mark Pellegrino adds a bit of class.   (He seems to have put on weight since his Lucifer days on Supernatural.  I guess blood has a lot of calories.)

I suppose I shouldn’t be bitchy about Nikita or Being Human.  After all, I scoffed at Supernatural for its two Pretty Boy leads until I actually watched the show and found out the Pretty Boys could actually act.

So, no new tv episodes for me last night.  Poop!  😦  Instead, I went to bed and read some more of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  So the evening wasn’t a total bust.