July Favorites (2014)

Howdy my buddies out there in the blog world. July was a VERY slow movie watching month for me. I feel like I barely watched or reviewed any. Which as you all know, in our world, that is a sad, sad feeling. Getting back on track this month though and hoping to go see Guardians of the Galaxy this weekend to kick my lull out of its’ boat. July was a great month for TV watching though, so many new shows popped up and some faves returned for another season. I also caught up with some shows that I had missed, as I renewed my Showtime and Starz subscriptions, so I will be including some of those as well. Let the games begin!

1. Black Sails: Season 1
Airing on Starz, this drama depicts the Golden Age of Piracy and focuses on Captain Flint and his rag tag crew of pirates. Set in New Providence Island, drama ensues on shore as much as on the ship. On the island, Eleanor Guthrie runs her father’s affairs with various ships and imports and exports. The show also focuses on other pirates like Captain Vane who runs around on the island with Jack Rackham and Anne Bonny, plotting various schemes to take over ships and treasures. This show is fun to watch if you are into pirates and those kinds of stories. Toby Stephens is wonderful as Captain Flint, although he surprised me in the beginning with one of the most gruesome scenes on the show. I was expecting him to be prim and proper and he proved me wrong! One of my favorite aspects of this show are the female characters, Eleanor is tough as nails, Anne is pretty bad ass, Miranda is wise and Max is beautiful and tenacious. They are strong willed, fierce and are not afraid of any old dirty pirate who puts a knife in front of their face. They put up a good fight and seem to teach the men a thing or two about life and being a decent human being.

Now who doesn’t like a sexy pirate?

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2. Penny Dreadful: Season 1
Finally caught up with this show, as I had been wanting to check it out and I really enjoyed it. I pretty much binge watched this in a matter of a few days. The show takes classic British literature as the basis for the story and then twists and turns it into something original. The show is set in the Victorian Era, Sir Malcolm Murray’s daughter Mina has been kidnapped and he is on the hunt to find her. He overturns every stone with the help of his daughter’s friend Vanessa Ives and together they uncover the depths of what appears to be a mysterious underworld filled with vampires and blood-sucking crazy creatures. Mina is somewhere trapped in this hell of a world, is she alive or is she merely an apparition of what she used to be? The power of the underworld is strong and they enlist the help of American sharp-shooter, Ethan Chandler and the young, egotistical doctor Victor Frankenstein to further find her.

The supporting cast of characters feature Dorian Gray, Van Helsing, Brona Croft and Caliban. Each character has their own story to tell and each one is weaved in with main characters. Season 1 seemed to set the scene for what will be a tumultuous and dark Season 2, where I believe more secrets will be revealed and each character will come closer to realizing the true nature of who they really are and what they can become. The best part of the show hands down is Eva Green who plays Vanessa, she is electrifying and intense, her stare is magnetic and she encapsulates the dark side of her character perfectly. Harry Treadaway who plays Victor is also my other favorite on the show, he is maniacal in a sense, yet deeply poetic and he really shines as the Mary Shelley version of Frankenstein.

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3. The Strain: Season 1
Anyone who watches the FX channel, knows that they are able and very willing to push every button there is, never holding back any blood and gruesomeness that a regular channel would. Given that detail, it is no wonder that they chose Guillermo Del Toro’s, The Strain, as their Summer hit. At the moment, I am super into this show and I probably have asked everyone I know, have you seen The Strain? To which as it usually happens to me, they answer no. Insert sad face there. Ok people if you haven’t seen this, you must watch it!

The show is based on Del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s horror novel trilogy. The show begins with a strange plane disaster, as the plane lands on the tarmac, everything goes dark and everyone, well almost everyone, on board is suddenly killed. A special CDC unit that handles biological threats is called in to inspect the damage. Dr. Ephraim Goodweather or “F” as he is called and Nora Martinez discover 4 survivors, none of the dead looked to have any damage done to them and the plane is filled with a strange, ammonia smelling, liquid that is only visible with a UV light. An old man named Abraham Setrakian, a Holocaust survivor hears of the news and goes to the airport to warn the doctors. They think he is crazy and they turn him away, but he warns them what is happening is dangerous. From there, strange things start occurring to the survivors and the two doctors start investigating what appears to be a parasitic worm that they believe may be behind the disaster. What is really happening is that these little worm-like creatures are infecting and living off the bodies of the dead and survivors and turning them into vampires slash demons. Ok now the whole thing is sounding pretty crazy, I know, but regardless it is fun to watch and if you like these types of stories it is worth giving it a shot. Some of the scenes are pretty gross, so you have been warned!

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tumblr_inline_n9j922aq0Y1qj3jiz (I’m with you Clint, ewwww)

4. The Bridge: Season 2
Again another FX show, last season ended on a really sad and depressing note and the show picks up right where we left off. I like when shows bring us right back to the end instead of 10 years later or something along those lines. The show focuses on the crimes that occur in El Paso, Texas and its’ Mexican border town of Juarez, one of the most notorious cities known for its violence and drug affiliations. American detective Sonya Cross and Mexican detective Marcos Ruiz, team up again to uncover and dig even deeper into crimes that were presented in the first season. Sonya is an odd duck, she has issues being a normal, functioning person, but her prowess for being a detective, who is unafraid of anything makes up for her lack of social abilities. Marcos is filled with deep secrets and rage, but he is compassionate and always fights to protect the people that matter most to him. In season 2, they face a new drug lord, but this time it is a strange woman with an odd past who has a harsh way of dealing with co-workers and enemies. A young man accidently spilled tea on her and she had his ear cut off, to say she is ruthless is a nice way to describe her.

tumblr_n8hzh7vtk41qfr4e7o1_400  (Be afraid, be very afraid of her)

The actors on this show are phenomenal, Diane Kruger plays Sonya perfectly as someone who is riddled with emotional baggage and Demian Bichir as Marcos, stands out as a rugged and real detective. I also like the fact that the stories that play out on the show, very much mirror actual incidents that have occurred. All the gruesome, crazy tales of Mexican drug lords and the crossing of drugs in underground tunnels is true. The border town for San Diego is Tijuana and I live fairly close and travel often to see relatives and can tell you that a lot of these types of stories are published on a daily basis in Mexican newspapers. Also, many times I watch shows with people speaking Spanish and it just doesn’t sound like how actual Mexicans or Latin people speak. I can vouch that they have kept the dialogue consistent with Spanish dialect and Mexican culture.

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Most Disappointing of July: True Blood: Season 7

I have to say this show has really gone down hill. The storylines are disjointed and nothing from the previous seasons ever seems to matter in the next. This only further makes me care less about what happens this season. What happened with Lilith, Warlo, the panther people, the witches, the werewolf peeps, the fairy town, the shifters, Luna’s daughter? All these interesting characters have their moment and then the storyline is done. It never migrates to the next season and seems to rarely ever even be brought up again. The fact that there were witches in the town, that seemed like a really interesting aspect that could have been played against the vampires, but rarely do we see Holly ever even bring up the fact that she has powers.


What about the shifters? They had their day in the sun and then just like that they haven’t been brought up again, other than Sam. Despite hating on it, I will keep watching because this is the final season of True Blood. Also because Alexandar Skarsgard, Ryan Kwanten and Joe Manganiello and pretty much every other actor and actress on the show is hot. Muy caliente! Also, I already invested so much time into it that I do have to see it all end. I just had to take a moment to vent my frustrations with what could be and what was a really cool show. Anyone else frustrated with True Blood?

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26 thoughts on “July Favorites (2014)

  1. I could care less about the last season of True Blood….

    Oh – and i can look at the GIF of Green all day…


  2. The reviews for that pirate show weren’t great so I skipped it.
    Do you suppose I should give it a test drive? I really have nothing good in my queue right now.
    P.S. I finished ‘My mad fat diary’ and loved it to bits. Thanks for recommending it.

    1. AHHH YAY!!!!!!!!!!!! Finally someone else watched it. I loved that freaking show. The pirate show is pretty fun to watch, I think if you like the stories and grittiness of pirates, then you will like it. What type of shows do you like? I can prob give you some good recommendations based on what you are into. 🙂

      1. Well, I like GoT (but so does every living soul on this planet). I like witty, fast-paced comedy such as Arrested Development. I like mockumentary style shows, for example ModernFamily, Parks&Rec, TheOffice and etc. I like some family dramas and cop shows but not too melodramatic or procedural. I am willing to bet you’d recommend something awesome, so shoot away, hopefully it won’t miss.

      2. HMMM Let me see sorry just replying, have you seen the Wire? Or Boardwalk Empire? Those are both HBO shows. I would highly recommend those before anything else. For Netflix, Orange is the new Black is pretty good. If you haven’t checked out American Horror Story yet, you should watch that, it’s a fun watch if you like campy horror type stuff.

  3. Oh, and by the way, you must watch ‘The way he looks’ (with subtitles if you don’t speak Portuguese), a Brazilian coming-of-age romantic drama film. You won’t regret it, I promise you.

  4. Look at you and your massive TV watching, Queel Mel! You reign as the TV Monarch 🙂

    Black Sails!!! WOO HOOO!! “Toby Stephens is wonderful as Captain Flint…” That’s all I need to hear really, oh how I love that man… Ha..ha.. it only shows just how versatile he is. He’s a posh English gent yet he is so convincing as a pirate!! Yeah, him beating that guy to death is gruesome, but as Toby said in interviews, that’s part of a PR plot to get the crews to fear him so he can retain his spot as Captain. It’s really a well-written show and they really picked the right man for the job!!

    Penny Dreadful looks very intriguing but I’m so chicken about horror shows, esp those dealing w/ exorcism and such. I just don’t have the nerves for it. But it’s got my other British fave, Timothy Dalton, who still looks dashing for being 70 years old! 😉

    1. I know that was my shout out to you and I chose it as the first one! Boom just for you! Yes totally a monarch at this point. Don’t judge I do have a life! LOL!!!

      You are right he kind of had to do that crazy scene, I mean Capt. Flint did to gain control and to make his crew believe in him. Pirates do not follow posh, sexy men, they need someone rugged and tough. 🙂

      Penny Dreadful is very good! But very dark. I think it would definitely freak you out. I cannot believe he is 70!!!!!!!! What the hell… he looks great and still ravishing as an older mature man.

      1. Ahahaha, yes Dalton is 70 but he certainly still looks amazing!! I’ve loved him since Bond but he also played Rochester in the 1983 BBC Jane Eyre, my second fave now after Toby but he was my first for a looooong time 😉

        I tell you I have a penchant for actors who can play tortured souls very well, he..he..

      2. Omg 70 damn! Yes well you like those tortured men, so I can see why you liked him too. Toby is very tortured on Black Sails for sure. I finally finished it! So tell me your Season 2 secrets.

      3. Your wish is my command Queen Mel! Ok, take a look at this interview w/ French TV whilst they’re in Monte Carlo TV Festival: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mw3T9_i3t9U

        Toby is soooo cute & it’s funny that he’s holding the mic, ahah. His expressions during this interview just gives me the feeeeeels!! Erm, sorry… heh I tend to get so unhinged when it comes to Toby, ahah. Luke Arnold is gorgeous too, I love both of these boys’ accents, yummy!!

        So I can’t wait to see how the second season will take us back 15 years back in London when Flint is a younger man. So it’ll show Flint’s back story which is what I’ve been waiting for! Oh my, Toby in an English Naval Uniform … SOL… I’m afraid I’d hyperventilate so much I’d pass out! 😛

      4. Lady Ruth that was wonderful. Only you can find this kind of stuff. Perfect! He looks so much like his mother in this video I can’t get over it. They both look seriously sexy.

        Season 2 sounds great, I would love to see how they started out and Flint’s relationship with Miranda Barlow. Ohhh yes it is going to get steamy I bet. I like how they described how they had to get fit. I need to get on this pirate diet slash gym regimen. lol The Tobester is always adorable.

    1. Yes Penny Dreadful is pretty good. Of course not the best show out there, but it is pretty fun to watch.

      I think you would like the Strain!! Must go watch it. Otherwise I’ll have to crank call you until you watch. Thx Mikey!

  5. Nice write-up, dude! You’ve been a busy TV bee, haven’t you?? Lol. I have so, so much to catch up on. I haven’t seen any of Black Sails, but that sounds interesting! So far, I have seen two episodes of Penny Dreadful. That seance scene…yikes! Lol. The show’s a little hammy sometimes, but I may try to finish it. Of course, you know my opinion of the first ep of The Strain. Excited to see more (even if it is nastay)! The first episode of season 2 of The Bridge kind of bored me…does it get better? And ohhhh True Blood. I think we all saw disappointment coming, huh? I’ve still only seen the first ep, but I don’t even know if I wanna keep going. :/

    1. Oh yes Penny can be hammy I agree, but it’s fun to watch. Honestly I think all the shows I mentioned are hammy at times. Strain is seriously nastay you said it perfectly. haha The Bridge is getting better, I like it it’s pretty good. Better than Tyrant that’s for sure. Yes True Blood it is a shame, but there are only 2 episodes left so at this point you might as well finish the show. Just get it over with. 🙂

  6. I tried both Black Sails and Penny Dreadful and couldn’t love either of them. And I have officially given up on True Blood. Not even Skarsgård is a strong enough draw anymore.

    1. I hear ya, it has taken me a while to completely finish Black Sails, I probably watch an episode once a week. Penny was fun and quick, but I can understand it is not the greatest show out there. True Blood… oh boy well it is what it is that’s how I look at it and at this point I am just getting through it and finishing it because now I just need to know how it ends. Then I can move on with my life. LOL. But I do not blame you for disowning it!

  7. I shake my head at True Blood but like you said, invested so much time in it (and the books). I’m really just curious how they’ll wrap it up. I vote for Sookie dying..but I’m pretty sure that won’t happen.
    And yes, sexy pirate indeed. I need to check out Black Sails 😉

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