Tube Talk: Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Ava

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Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 3: Episode 8: Ava: GRADE: A

Well first off Happy Thanksgiving everyone, hope this year is a safe holiday for you and that unlike Captain Holt, you don’t need to deal with your ex. Or Tommy Gobbler.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine‘s Thanksgiving offering this year gives us not just the season’s best so far, but a true series highlight. This episode moves a breakneck pace that keeps story and character beats moving along nicely. Something this show does incredibly well. Terry’s wife goes into labor, the crashed internet causes case files to be done by hand with family of convicted people angry, and Holt deals with ex-boyfriend Nick Offerman. So much to take in yet it doesn’t miss a beat at all.

The main centerpiece is the birth of Terry’s daughter and thankfully the show does make it a good use of guest star Merrin Dungey as Sharon Jeffords who doesn’t want Holt around given how he makes her uncomfortable and that’s understandable given Holt’s intimidating nature and well placed flashbacks to such instances. I mean he goes about it with any other normal human interaction he has and Terry knows he doesn’t want Holt “fatiguing her vagina.”

Terry’s out to deal with a case, but enlists Jake to be her vaginal Gandalf (Jake’s words and outing himself as a Rings fan) and of course she goes into birth. Sure Terry gets a confession using his own birth to get said result, but the trouble is of course Thanksgiving in New York. Gina certainly is no helping being certainly not a fan of children or really the whole child birthing process itself, which you can’t really blame her. Sure new life is beautiful, but it also gross. As soon as Sharon goes into the birth the episode really kicks into gear and never lets up. There are so many wonderful jokes that just are on rapid fire its amazing I didn’t once during the episode want it to slow down. Its in the middle of a highly stressful holiday with a highly stressful situation that means things are moving fast.

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Its also another great way to have Jake mature more as a person and also thankfully avoid one fear I had in that it would be the Jake and Amy think about children and seriously contemplate the future here since well there literally wouldn’t be any room at all during this episode for it, but also I feel it would kinda just bring the whole show down after we just had a heavy relationship focused episode on them already last week. Keeping that out of the way was the smartest thing next to how they involve Hitchcock and Scully who provide helpful ways of getting all the exhaustive paperwork done, but constantly fuck that up themselves with electrical socket fires and getting one’s arm stuck and broken from a pneumatic tube. But I digress, season 3 so far has truly been Jake’s evolving into a much better person than he is and this episode perfectly captures it with how he handles himself in deal with Sharon’s birthing process, having to think on his toes whenever something didn’t go right and buffering between her and Holt. I also think its because of his relationship with Amy. Again The Mattress last week wasn’t the greatest, but it shows what an impact dating Amy is having on Jake that it shows honest and real maturity for the character. Now we’ve seen him be mature and focused without having been with Amy, but I think it is that now he’s caring a lot more for someone else, its helping him get better. Though he does care for everyone in the precinct, but they aren’t the ones riding him in bed so yeah.


Cool and calm Jake even allows for Holt to contact his ex Frederick who happens to be an OBGYN and gives us more past passive-aggressive Holt interactions. Even better, its Nick Offerman and his glorious beard. Again, jam packed episode and we get a nicely done backstory on his character and how he and Holt were as a couple in such a short time, but I also hope this isn’t at all the last we’ve seen of Offerman on this show. He’s perfectly fitting in, maybe because his talent, maybe because its from the same brains behind Parks and Recreation, lets call it a tie. He comes in and allows for Holt to even improve on himself from last week. Jake’s coolness in this episode shows why exactly he’d be the perfect godfather for Ava Jeffords. I’ll admit, the moment with him, Terry, and Sharon at the end, very sweet.

The rest of the episode is a hilarious adventure. Terry and Rosa’s determination to get back is exciting for where it leads and that is stealing an NYPD motorcycle and riding off to the hospital. Amy and Boyle dealing with the paperwork made for good dynamics between the two and reminded me and most likely the audience of how good they are when paired up. Amy’s amazement at Boyle already cramped up but still doing paperwork makes a lot of sense for how both characters have been developed. They even get Hitchcock and Scully involved as mentioned that fits well within the show. Gina being off to the side is great since she gets to sprinkle in her amazingness and gets maybe my biggest laugh from her reaction at looking at the detailed birth plan. I would have that same reaction Gina. Oh and Boyle opens the show in a turkey costume. Justin throwing it out there.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine moving fast gave it some real legs right now and makes for a fantastic character spotlight. I really love this episode.

Tube Talk: Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Mattress


Learning along the way.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 3: Episode 7: The Mattress: GRADE: C+

This particular episode seems to have a good focus on the more serious here with some laughs sprinkled throughout and that works mostly as we explore lessons. See even when we’re fully grown adults who seem to have it all together, we still gotta learn lessons thats the emphasis of this episode is learning lessons and also going further into Jake and Amy’s new relationship.

This episode goes head first in having Jake and Amy work together on their first case since they started dating and it goes smooth then not so smooth. Their main conflict is Jake’s mattress which is giving Amy some uncomfortable nights when staying at Jake’s. He doesn’t want to change that because its Jake. This main story works because of its circumstances since it forces them to question their future together and as detectives. They still work together and can find themselves so often on the same page despite being mentally and emotionally different pretty much all of the time. It also touches on how making the first serious move in the relationship for the other is like the most psychological fucked game of chicken possible. The episode wants us to think Jake and Amy aren’t on the same page which well doesn’t work since e already know that they are and this episode doesn’t do a good job at convincing us they aren’t exactly on the same page. Their fight when its brought up how Amy has told her mom about her and Jake was the most convincing conflict. Taking the first real step in a relationship is making what’s new and fun a very real thing. That’s scary, but also wonderful as Jakes declaration of ordering a new mattress before he and Amy finally catch the criminal they been chasing all episode.

Again this episode is about their chemistry. Things like their mattress shopping montage is fun and shows how in synch they are and a rare use of good music cues for the show. Though their focus once again regards Boyle as their over obsessive cheerleader which is a double edged sword. I hate Boyle being reduced to that, yet Joe Lo Truglio’s line delivery is exception and makes damn near anything funny.


Speaking of Boyle his subplot is weak sauce as he scratches up Holt’s car who was in the wrong yet denies it in parking over two spaces. The most entertaining thing there aside from Boyle actually singing the Charles in Charge when he parks, Gina’s role. When ever a storyline might not click on this show, always count on Gina to make something very fun. Holt’s admittance of guilt is kinda cute, but then just goes an over explanation gag that doesn’t quite really work.

Rosa and Terry also doesn’t quite gel since last week was a lot more of Rosa opening up and this feels like a bit of redux on the character. A majority of Rosa and Terry teams up is them just being the polar opposites of each other which works, it does work, but works better then there is more to it. Not so much here this time, but laughs come through with them this time around as they try to help Rosa’s little brother, from the program, turn himself around. It leads to where you think it might and its not as entertaining as you think it could be.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine has a bit of a lesser episode with a really nicely enough done A-plot. Its kinda going through the motions here, yet its still maybe the funniest half hour sitcom on any network right now.

Site Update

So hello there. So I’m gonna lessen activity on here. Here’s the thing, as mentioned on here I have aspirations. I have a completed short film script, starting on a full length one, developing a long time film project I’ve had, putting together comics, and writing several stories, including an addition in an anthology I’m prepping to write.

Now that in addition to some duties I have, traffic here is gonna die down a bit. Top 10s will still happen, Brooklyn Nine-Nine will be reviews since I love talking about it, but The Leftovers weekly coverage is over. I will review the whole second season as a big post. There will still be as many posts on here as I can make, but now where I am, I’m ready to get my career off and going further so stay with my faithful readers!

P.S. Ash vs. Evil Dead rules!

Tube Talk: Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 3: Episodes 5&6

First allow me to explain where I’ve been. I was on vacation with several of my closest friends. Everyone needs a break every now and then so hey I took a break, much needed one, and feel charged! Lets get back to work!


These latest episodes of Brooklyn Nine-Nine seem to ask the age old question of any workplace sitcom of, “Don’t these people have jobs?” Well yes, particularly here some very important ones, but its also something brought up from the same team of this show with The Office and Parks and Recreation and many others from the past, NewsRadio for certain springs to mind when that question is asked. Now this can be done well or not and Brooklyn Nine-Nine seems to know how to strike a good balance between absurdism and realism more often than not. The Jimmy Jab Games is a good example, Rosa investigating who eat her ice cream might not be, but the best example is the Halloween episodes. While season 1’s episode was a classic, last year’s installment wasn’t quite up to par and well got a bit over complicated for itself so here we are with Halloween III which not only is their best one yet, but the best offering season 3 has to offer so far.

Halloween III pits Jake and Captain Holt against once again to see who will call the other the most amazing detective/genius. This is also the end of the Halloween trilogy for the show and it needs to get big, it has to be outlandish which is why the heist setting, distractions, planted cockroaches, and Rosa gymnastics are required. Its gotta go big or go home. The interactions via strained paranoia are great set up for comedy, such as Amy being left off of each time and have her breasts yelled out by Jake and Holt who each think she’s being used by either side.

Again makes this one work is that the absurd lengths taken for the sake of the bet are outrageous, but its also a bit subdued like the first one. Halloween II was disappointing in how far it tried to reach to feel like it needed to be bigger. It did, but its grasp was bigger than though. Here having a bit of a smaller setting where its mainly confined to the precinct makes it work. It makes for many incredible laughs, including the fun subplot of Boyle trying to set Gina up with Genevieve’s twin brother for a weird connected family thing. That works well within the setting and doesn’t take too much away from the main proceedings. Also helps that guest star Josh Casaubon plays into it very well and very believable. Gina’s reactions are pretty great and its good to know that Mary Lynn Rajskub is gonna be around more for the show which is very reassuring.

This year’s bet between Jake and Holt also really shows a spirit of friendly competition than the previous two have and that also speaks to the development on friendship and professionalism between the two who do actually learn a lesson in underestimating Amy who wins the competition with her own planning savvy that gives the episode a great twist and turn in the events and also a nice surprise which gives a great conclusion to the seasonal bet that ends in Jake and Holt having one up on each other and Amy getting the final word. Melissa Fumero really gets to shine here and obviously shows she’s having a lot of fun with what’s given to her.

Halloween III celebrates the show and holiday with such style that is never lets up with the laughs and keeps consistent throughout.


Into the Woods however is a lesser episode that feels mixed. Sure it does focus on their jobs at first but then goes into varying directions. The A and C plot really are okay, its the main B plot with Rosa coming to term with her emotional side that works. She’s considering breaking up with Marcus (confirmed to still be a character here) and the emotional journey she goes on, even Holt who are both called out for their emotional repression by Holt’s husband. Their relationship with each other this episode make for great character arc, particularly Rosa. It also lets Stephane Beatriz stretch herself more on the show and give more depth to Rosa. Holt’s contributions continue making for great laughs and the resolution at the end makes a lot of narrative sense.

Main plot wise its okay. Jake and Boyle take Terry out to a co-workers cabin for stress release due to his home situation and well it feels a bit old hat. Taking the characters out of their setting can make for good things, but this wasn’t the case. Even if the image of Terry carrying Jake and Boyle over when they need to huddle together for warmth in a sinkhole is worth it, the story doesn’t inspire as many laughs as thought and wastes a guest stint of Veep’s Matt Walsh who this episode could have use more of. Though hey small progression of Jake, that’s great too.

Amy and Gina’s storyline is mainly good for more interactions between the two of them which proved to be a highlight last season when they were paired. Always good times with them.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine keeps things strong and moving along in a very good third season. Gotta admit I missed this show while I was gone. Glad to be watching it again.



Tube Talk: The Leftovers: Off Ramp


Dong showed on HBO. Progress!


The Leftovers: Season 2: Episode 3: Off Ramp: GRADE: C-

In the third episode episode of its second season, The Leftovers yet again takes a hard narrative change yet again as we’re introduced yet again to the narrative stallings on the Guilty Remnant. Again I see a purpose and understand them, but again they just didn’t work outside of Patti and well now Laurie. The GR actually only served to stall the narrative of the show and what better things were going on around them and here I thought it would be no more of them, but that’s not the case. Patti being around to haunt Kevin I like since it adds to Kevin’s PTSD as that’s a good part of his character.

Well the GR are back and amount for what’s the big stumbling block this season so far, yet responsible for one of its best things. Amy Brenneman’s Laurie does a full 180 here and gets fascinating. Her time in the GR was misguided as she seems to fully admit and is changing that by helping to write a book about her time in the GR to get the word out and has help with Tommy to go inside and recruit fellow members to their side. One member in particular is Susan who is an analogue in many ways of Laurie when she first joined the GR and represents a central theme of the narrative which is about the human need for faith and inclusion. Which is why some people bought into the GR, why Tommy would buy into Holy Wayne. The inclusion goes well into Laurie’s support group in of itself actually. The sense of regret is played by Brenneman perfectly and beautifully directed by Carl Franklin who brings across Laurie’s new life and attitude in stellar form. The moment when she retrieves her laptop from her dick of a landlord and runs over two GR members it shows she’s still in desperate need of work. Her redemption isn’t gonna be pretty at all. Laurie attempts to really fix things and even with the book it might not be easy.

Her scene where she just randomly attacks the publisher, I don’t get that at all. Its the one weak pot in her story since really what was the fucking point? She just heard Susan had cracked and killed herself and her family in a traffic accident and well then decides to attack. This show sometimes man. Though Susan’s story was great being a mirror of Laurie. Fascinating stuff there.


Now to Tommy who is still inherently uninteresting. While there could have been something a little bit, it just went away. tommy being sent into GR chapters again and again should have presented a conflict that he might be influenced by them to go and join and that does happen but yet again because of the GR in a way that makes no sense. Tommy is discovered and locked up in a truck where we meet Meg. Meg then takes off Tommy’s pants and rapes him and threatens to set him on fire before telling him to send a message back to Laurie. Tommy’s fight with Laurie doesn’t really amount to much. What did what Meg do that convinced Tommy so well? He’s so deep in Laurie needs to deprogram him in a small sense and keep him grounded. Tommy’s writing just hasn’t been interesting and the prospect of continuing Holy Wayne’s stick now as part of Laurie’s operation, thus making them no better than the GR or even Wayne could provide for some intriguing narratives down the line for the season, but the stuff in Texas is far more interesting.


Off Ramp is an episode the is fairly average for this show. There is some great stuff, but narrative decisions that boggle the mind and even upset you when they never really seem to add up to nothing at all. Which is the show in of itself in many ways. Laurie’s arc went from uninteresting to completely compelling. She’s one of the big saving graces of this show now and its put on full display and as is the direction, but the direction also leads down very confusing and uninteresting roads. Hopefully next week is when the show can get back on track.

Tube Talk: Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Oolong Slayer

BROOKLYN NINE-NINE: (L-R) Capt. Holt (Andre Braugher), Gina (Chelsea Peretti) and Jake (Andy Samberg) in the "The Oolong Slayer" episode of BROOKLYN NINE-NINE airing Sunday, Oct. 18 (8:30-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2015 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: John P Fleenor/FOX.

Serious business brings us back to where we were before.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 3: Episode 4: The Oolong Slayer: GRADE: A-

With a show like Brooklyn Nine-Nine one wondered when first announced about how the show might take on serious crimes and something similar of elk given this is a show about the NYPD and really is mostly dealt with property and theft crimes of the such, with the occasional harder crime involved here and there, but now something really hard comes into the fray as Jake discovers the return of a serial killer while investigating a breaking and entertaining case.

What’s significant is that such a serious case is enough for Jake to defy Captain Vulture’s orders of handling small slice cases so Vulture can send harder and bigger cases to his rival as part of a bet they got going and go right to Holt. This is the episode where Jake and Holt once again get to be the oddball pair of equals they are as policeman within the NYPD. Its also a great reminder as to what an oddball pair Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher are. Jake and Holt’s relationship is a life source for the show given that was the main conflict when the show began is how this smart, but oddball detective would get along with the straight laced, hard nosed captain. Both now are in places where they aren’t too happy and their reliance on each other to finally solve the case of an uncaught serial killer. Along with Gina who overheard them and can’t rat them out, but in her defense the acoustics in the men’s bathroom do sound great. Seeing Jake and Holt on a case together had a familiar feel while still feeling different thanks to the changes that were instilled by the season already. Jake Peralta is a great cop and that is perfectly highlighted in this episode as it shows he’s equally motivated to be a great cop and because catching a serial killer is incredibly appealing to him. Holt is in for the thrill of real police work again.

Holt’s acceptance to leave the case when ordered is understandable, but Jake can’t operate like that. He is the hero cop he believes himself to be and again gets to show what a good cop he is in catching the killer with Holt who plays it up so well as he’s obviously excited and of course Jake uses this to get Holt back to the precinct. I love this is how they got Holt back to being captain as any other way might not have fully worked. Jake reminding Holt of what his old life was like works perfectly and fits within both of the the characters. The excitement among the precinct I’m sure if felt on the other side with viewers as now, the guys finally got a solid win for themselves this season now. Good guys win!

This episode is great for that story because of how well defined they are now and the love between the characters. Also Gina’s selfie stick killer catching selfie maybe just the sole highlight. Too funny.

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Now the B and C plots aren’t so much as good as the main one, but they are pretty good for great laughs. Terry starts feeling incredibly stressed and he should with his third child on the way, wife on bed rest, trying to maintain and police precinct, so stress eating fatsuit Terry seemed logical. I like this for more of the pairing of Terry Crews and Joe Lo Truglio who are just great together. The real fun does come when the fatsuit is on and once again terry Crews shows how game he is for this show. The love he clearly has for this show and cast is really infectious toe come across the screen and have you love it even more. Its fun to see them be themselves, but stretch their characters too.

Amy and Rosa are assigned by The Vulture to throw him a surprise party and again its mainly good because of the paired character. Of course the Vulture is hilarious because he’s so unfathomly douchy. It works it does and his stalling of it because he won’t share shit about himself feels right and right that since he’s in a band, they book him and said band to play his own birthday. Again far more engaging because of the characters put together since Amy and Rosa are fantastic together and man hopefully we get a more full episode of them working together on a case.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine cleverly lets us get back to where we were before and seems ready for even more antic now that the whole crew is back together. Welcome back, Captain Holt!

Tube Talk: The Leftovers: A Matter of Geography

The Garveys and Dursts bring their baggage to Texas.


The Leftovers: Season 2: Episode 2: A Matter of Geography: GRADE: B

While maybe not as strong as last week’s hard reboot premiere, A Matter of Geography is a necessary episode for filling in the blanks between the season 1 finale and last week.

So we essentially pick up with Nora coming to Kevin’s house in the season 1 finale just as Kevin and Jill come home and just go from there. A new baby in their lives. Kevin admits to the situation with Patti and Nora with her weird thing of prostitutes shooting her. All is out in the open, except for the fact that Kevin is haunted by ghost Patti and just as Kevin’s dad is released from his psych ward. Yeah he’s out and heading to Australia, more like Hell’s Kitchen really, since he’s not gonna sit around and watch what used to be there and those are what get Kevin stirred up to just impulsively up and move. Also lucky in how Nora just got a shit ton of cash on her house from MIT scientists. Yeah a group of MIT scientists want to pay for Nora’s house for way more than its worth in order to research the Sudden Departure and their theory that it was a matter of geography. Had Nora been at the table with her family rather than in the kitchen, there’s some chance she could have been taken with them. Its interesting scene for not only more of Carrie Coon’s excellent acting but what this news does for Nora. It doesn’t exactly give her great clarity, which is something I think we’ll never get for the Sudden Departure, but also a reason herself to just start over even more than she was already by moving in with Kevin and Jill.


Back to Patti, what the hell? I wasn’t the biggest fan of the Guilty Remnant from last year what with their chain smoking existentialism and silence. How they will fit in here is gonna be either fascinating or frustrating given I’m rather fine with leaving them in Mapleton. Laurie appears to have left as evident when she picks up Tommy from his last meeting with Jill before she moves down south, also aware that Tommy left the baby on their doorstep, and with Patti’s ghost haunting Kevin. Also Liv Tyler, but that’s not for now. Patti’s haunting of Kevin at least gives Kevin something of a conflict for the season and also possibly coming to terms that his father might have been right in his delusions. Patti was the most fascinating part of the GR thanks primarily to the performance of Ann Dowd. Her interplay with Kevin is great as he slowly start questioning reality because of her. Its clearly not of guilt for burying her as she keeps haunting after Kevin’s pleaded his case to a one-eyed AFTEC agent. This should be interesting.

The trip to Miracle is anything but peaceful when they have to make their way through the vistors center and discover their rental burnt down. Well Nora then wins a house in a property auction, throwing them all into the deep end of the pool and because relating back to the MIT scene, she’s going to make sure she’s never in the wrong place ever again. She is gonna take control and guide her own path, even if she might not fully be in control.

Then we wrap back around to the cliffhanger from last week where Kevin is in the now dried up springs with a cinderblock tied around his ankle, most likely thanks to his sleepwalking and find the empty car Evie left her house in. The premiere and this could easily be reversed since the cliffhanger of last week hinges on the emotional investment built up with the Murphys from last week and well its jarring, but again necessary to see the loose ends of Mapleton wrapped up. Such as Kevin and Jill’s official adoption of Lily, which also lets us another way the Departure affected things when the agency guy tries to throw in another kid to them. Its an orphan sale! Its a small, but effective moment that actually might be the best part of the entire episode itself.

Things are most certainly changing for the show and how long it can effectively keep it up is to be seen, but based of the offerings we have right now of season 2, its off to a good start.