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Everything posted by BethR

  1. BethR


    A medievalist perspective by Kevin J. Harty, who has written or co-written several books on medievalism in movies: "Beam Me Up Robbie!: Outlaw King"
  2. BethR

    The Princess Bride

    RIP William Goldman. (Link to a collection of Hollywood Twitter tributes at Slate.com) Maybe he deserves his own thread, but it might as well be here, because he loved The Princess Bride, both the book and the movie. New York Times obit.
  3. BethR

    Shakespeare Uncovered

    Volume 3 has been or is now being broadcast on WUNC--PBS for North Carolina. I made a point of recording the Much Ado episode, as it is one of my favorite plays, and enjoyed it very much. The Campbell Library has vols.1-2 on DVD, and I own vol. 2 (Hamlet/Richard II/Macbeth/Twelfth Night & As You Like It/The Tempest/Henry IV & Henry V) if you want to borrow it. The weak point of vol. 2, unfortunately, is Derek Jacobi on Richard II, as he spends too much time on largely discredited "Shakespeare was really someone else" hypotheses.
  4. BethR

    God Friended Me

    Coming this fall to CBS. (trailers & featurettes at the link) I reserve judgment.
  5. BethR

    God Friended Me

    Originally, I thought this would be a 30-minute sitcom format, but it is an hour-long light drama. After five episodes, the clearest TV ancestors are Touched by an Angel--but the "angels" are ordinary humans, at least one of whom claims to be an atheist, and "God" is a mysterious Facebook friend who suggests other "friends" who need help--or Joan of Arcadia, with its skeptical but good-hearted protagonist directed by an enigmatic, multi-faced divinity--if Joan had had a team of friends/colleagues. The show, so far, avoids the sentimentality of Touched, but doesn't have the depth of Joan. So far, the greatest strength of God Friended Me is the cast, especially Brandon Micheal Hall as the main character Miles and Joe Morton as Miles's father Pastor Finer. The two main female characters, Cara and Jaya, look too much alike.
  6. BethR

    The Good Place

    Speaking of shows with vaguely religious/spiritual themes, The Good Place is a comedy about a not particularly "good" woman (Kristen Bell) who dies and finds herself in an afterlife identified as "the good place" where she feels somewhat uncomfortable. Ted Danson is the "angel" responsible for the clerical error. The basic assumptions of this series--that one's afterlife is based on one's deeds--are obviously not Christian, but match many other religions and general feelings, I suppose. I haven't seen it. Writers are attempting to infuse both a continuing narrative, comparing the show to LOST. All episodes are available for streaming via NBC.com
  7. BethR

    The Good Place

    Because everything connects to medieval studies if you look at it the right way (linked article contains SPOILERS for seasons 1-3 of The Good Place): The (Medieval) Saints and Sinners of NBC's The Good Place, by Matthew Gabriele
  8. BethR

    Narnia: the Netflix series

    I'll say here what I posted on Fb in response to this news: This could be good, or it could go so wrong in so many ways that my main feeling is trepidation. Some officious do-gooder will doubtless attempt to rehabilitate Susan, too. (I'm not against her rehabilitation, I hasten to say. I just think some things can be left to the imagination.)
  9. BethR

    A Star is Born (2018)

    AVClub compares four versions of A Star is Born, with trailers/clips: Another Star Is Born: Why Hollywood Keeps Returning to This Tragic Cinderella Story
  10. BethR

    The Good Place

    Thanks for this list, Joel. I just looked at the series titles on the publisher's site--what an array! I worked with the editor of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Philosophy (2003) on another project, and I had no idea the series had gone in so many directions since then! I'll look forward to acquiring your volume eventually.
  11. BethR

    The Americans

    The final season (6) finally won an Emmy for writing, and Matthew Rhys won an emmy for Lead Actor. Keri Russell deserved one as well. (I know awards don't mean anything, but I found myself watching the Emmys and wondering what was going on--everything seemed to be going to just three shows.)
  12. BethR

    The Good Place

    Joel, I would love to read your paper. Have you presented it yet? Season 3 starts September 27.
  13. Ha. I love Edwin Turner's responses overall. He's absolutely right--nobody knows what literature will be canonized in 50 or 100 years. My own thoughts on scrolling through this list were along the general lines of "If this is going to be the 21st century canon, depression and cynicism will rule." But then, that was more or less the situation with the 20th c. canon, such as it is, when I went to grad school, which is why I ended up a medievalist, despite having spent my MA on a shelf-ful of late-20th century poets. In other canonicity news, "The Great American Read" books are a bizarre hodge-podge of actual great books, books people think should be considered great, and complete dreck. My fear is that somehow 50 Shades of Gray, The Da Vinci Code, or A Confederacy of Dunces (the most overrated novel in 20th century literature) will the voted up to the top. So everyone, go there and vote for some decent books.
  14. BethR

    Living Biblically

    Answers In Genesis breaks down every episode, FWIW. Believing in a 6000-year-old creation not actually required.
  15. BethR

    The Nevers

    Joss Whedon signed on with HBO for The Nevers, "a sci-fi epic about a gang of Victorian women who find themselves with unusual abilities, relentless enemies, and a mission that might change the world." Some have noted similarity with a proposed comic book, Twist, described as "a Victorian female Batman," with which he was associated for a time. No premiere date as yet, but probably not before 2020, is my guess. Apparently Whedon is also still working on a Freeform series called Pippa Smith, Grown-up Detective. Don't hold your breath.
  16. BethR


    And the fan campaign for renewal resulted in Netflix picking up Lucifer for a (shorter) 4th season. I will say that Tom Ellis has done a nice job with the part of "Lucifer," which offers the greatest range of emotions and attitudes. The actress playing the police lieutenant seems more like a model than an actress, but according to imdb.com, she has had several recurring roles in the past. http://www.digitalspy.com/tv/ustv/feature/a860487/lucifer-season-4-netflix-release-date-cast-trailer-episodes-spoilers/
  17. BethR

    Babylon 5

    B5 is now available for streaming via Amazon Prime. I own all the DVDs, so I haven't actually checked it out, but for anyone who's never been able to see it, now you can--free (with Prime). It's more relevant than ever. I also recommend A Dream Given Form: The Unofficial Guide to the Universe of Babylon 5 (Guffey & Koontz), from ECW Press. Details & background for each episode (and more), plus interviews with J.M. Straczynski, Peter Jurasik, and others.
  18. BethR

    Star Wars: Han Solo origin story spin-off

    I didn't have high expectations, and am not devoted to the larger Star Wars mythos, so maybe that's why I just enjoyed Solo and thought it was a perfectly good summer sci-fi action movie. I left the theater smiling, which was fine. Andrew and Joel Mayward, if you want to find out what happens to a ship's AI in love and embodied (or not), read The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and its sequel, A Closed and Common Orbit, by Becky Chambers. I'm not as enthused about this series as some (there's a third book I haven't read yet), but they do go there. It won't solve the movie's problem, but you can't have everything.
  19. BethR


    I do like Hailee Steinfeld. As for movies (at least) about poets, I'd make an exception for Bright Star, which was quite good with Keats. But that's the only success I can think of.
  20. BethR


    While I don't idolize Emily Dickinson, I don't have a good feeling about this. Why can't she just be an oddball 19th century girl named Emily Jones?
  21. BethR

    Living Biblically

    And cancelled, though a few final episodes will air. It's been fairly incoherent, and probably left every audience it might have been trying to pander to more or less lukewarm. Probably should have read on to Rev. 3:15.
  22. BethR


    And after three seasons, Lucifer appears to be cancelled, though there's a lively fan campaign to revive it. The final episode synopsis at the link doesn't give away anything significant, such as the fact that Neil Gaiman himself does a bit of voiceover narration for the first and (probably) last time as "God." It's a perfectly good series finale, so IMO there's not much point in a 4th season. The season narrative arc of season 3 involved a more-or-less immortal Cain, though. That was...interesting.
  23. BethR


    The next replay to "medical studies & LSD" is also spam. Both of these include links to "essays for hire" sites, which just vile.