TV Binge: The Brightest Star in the Sky (夜空中最闪亮的星, 2019)

The Brightest Star in the Sky (夜空中最闪亮的星, 2019)

brightest star in the sky

Cast: Z. Tao, Janice Wu, Jun Feng Niu, Xi Yue Cao, Jin Song Wang, Lan Qin, Chloe Zhao, David Chen, Yi Ling Li, Jin Cheng Zhang, Ji Jia Liu

As singer-songwriter C-POP star, Huang Zitao plays a role of a recalcitrant idol who debuted and become famous since he was young. He deeply likes music and keeps persistent, that is similar with Huang Zi Tao. This time Yang Zhen Zhen is a newbie manager who just starts the work. Being a newbie staff, she faces various obstacles but she never gives up her music dreams. – MyDramaList

Where to watch it with English subtitles

QUOTE/SCENE

the brightest star

STORY

The best stories in dramas are those where both of the characters are made better because of the things they go through while they are pursuing their own dreams. The Brightest Star in the Sky is one of the few Chinese TV dramas that remember that the story is about two young adults who are pursuing their dreams and helping each other in the process. Their meeting was unexpected and it does feel like there is a certain coincidence to it but the central story is about the idol star Boxu Zheng (Z.Tao) trying to achieve his dream of making C-pop music so that the world can see the talent in Chinese music but his company always trying to sculpt him into something else and his struggle to find his footing and his way in the entertainment industry. At the same time, he ends up having Zhenzhen Yang (Janice Wu) as his assistant who turns to work in the music industry to find another option to still work in music while not having enough talent to perform music or become a singer.

The Brightest Star in the Sky

Their love story grows because of working together and understanding each other throughout the series. The love story is never a focal point while there are some cute moments between the two, its focus isn’t that and its what gives this story its unique angle, making it less of a forced situation but one with  more depth to grow both of these characters (as well as the supporting characters), making them easier to connect with.

LENGTH/PACING

Episodes: 44
Length of Episodes: 40 minutes

44 episodes definitely ranges on the higher end of TV series and will also suffer a little bit of dragging on. Fortunately, The Brightest Star in the Sky overcomes this for the most part. It still has some parts that linger such as a good chunk in the first quarter which is just struggling through the very frustrating love interest with Zhenzhen and Zhirui as they both tiptoe around the situation until fate just passes them by in some ways. For the most part, the drama does keep fresh new struggles and dilemmas to show up to play around with the characters and set loyalties. The most annoying bits might actually go to the actual management of the Star Entertainment with the CEO, his wife and the new VP that comes into the office and creates a somewhat fake love triangle. There are some issues here and there but luckily it remembers its focus on its two main leads and their story so when they are in the scenes, it always has a nice feeling to the scene especially as the characters develop.

CHARACTER/CHEMISTRY

The Brightest Star in the Sky

With that said, the characters in this series, whether its the main leads or the supporting characters are done fairly well. There are some typical roles like Boxu Zheng is the son of a rich businessman so his father has the typical role of being against his dreams and wants him to take over the family business while the sister stands by his side. The main family drama occurs in this level and actually is pretty fun at times to watch and also some of the more predictable elements of the story. Another element here is the character that plays a good friend of Zhenzhen, Gu Ye who ends up being the mentor to Boxu and sends him into a better training for his dreams. Gu Ye, played by Hong Kong actor Jin Cheng Zhang, is actually one of the best segments of the series throughout as it has both comedic moments but also inspirational and guidance to the younger characters.

The Brightest Star in the Sky

The second story line is the second male lead Zhirui Yu, played by Junfeng Niu who is the love interest of Zhenzhen at the beginning but also makes his sacrifices for his success in becoming a music. His character is one that is actually a bit frustrating as he always falls into this circle of bad things and of making decisions that he later seems to regrets. However, his character works best at the beginning and the ending episodes. The same goes for the girl playing Zhenzhen’s roommate and best friend, Xia Yuan (Xi Yue Cao) who ends up being quite the positive character until one little section nearing the end that makes her a bit more frustrating to watch.

brightest star 2

Finally, the main couple is the final one that probably the one that I’ve talked about the most as to how I feel about it. Boxu and Zhenzhen actually works really well together. While the series doesn’t the love in the forefront, they give it enough room to feel their natural connection to each other as soulmates and partners and lovers as their romance grows through their understanding and eventually has some really fun chemistry between the two people. Its a very positive relationship.

OVERALL

The Brightest Star in the Sky is a really well done TV series. Its plot is well-executed with its main plot being about following dreams intertwined with a romance between two young adults. Its done in a fun and comedic way for the most part but with some drama and struggle. It shows the difficulty of stardom and being an idol while in the entertainment business. At the same time, it tries to be a positive type of relationship as the two characters grow together. At the same time, where there are some by the numbers plot points, the characters are done rather well whether its the main leads or the supporting ones. The only elements that might be lacking are some of the not so well done visual effects.

MAIN THEME

TV Binge: Love O2O (微微一笑很倾城, 2016)

Moving on from Rush of the Dead Summer (review), I really liked Zheng Shuang as the female lead and went to look for her other TV series. Luckily, there was one on Netflix called Love O2O. The other title is One Smile Is Very Alluring, which is the title of the movie that was released which is also available on Netflix that I hadn’t seen yet. Love O2O opened up a ton of talented young actors and actresses that will lead to some of my future TV series choices (as you will soon find out).

Love O2O (微微一笑很倾城, 2016)

LOVE O2O

Director: Liu Yu Fen

Cast: Shuang Zheng, Yang Yang, Xiao Tong Miao, Jun Feng Niu, Ye Cheng Zheng, He Zhang, Bai Yu, Vin Zhang

Xiao Nai is a gaming expert who, courtesy of his basketball skills, academic excellence, swimming talent and game company presidency, also happens to be the most popular student on campus. When he first comes across the gorgeous computer science major Bei Wei Wei, the infinitely talented wunderkind immediately falls in love. But it’s not Bei’s looks that he notices; it’s the ridiculous mastery with which she is commanding her guild and owning everyone in an online multiplayer game that makes her impossible to forget. Now, Xiao Nai must use his skills both in real life and online to capture the adorable but dorky Bei’s heart. But does their love have the XP to succeed, or will this relationship never level up? – MyDramalist

If you want to check out Love O2O, you can find it with English subtitles on Youtube or its also on Netflix.

QUOTE/SCENE

love o2o

STORY

Love O2O is probably one of the more light-hearted and positive Chinese dramas that I’ve seen so far. While there is some drama between friendship, work and relationships, it never over dramatizes and drags out a situation for too long. Perhaps this gives it less depth but the story itself knows how to focus on the positives of each relationship and give its a positive way to solve some of the issues here. There are conflicts that show up especially when dealing with the MMORPG world where the online relationships also result to the expectations and rumors and bullying that happens as well. At the same time, the story is set in the second half on the game development world and the hurdles that they end up facing.

Love O2O

While the story lies mostly in the real world, a portion of it is still in the fantasy world, more the in-game world where they have a lot of computer graphics. They have fighting bits together and has a whole relationships that comes out of there as well as giving it a lot of fantastical elements of online dating via the in-game elements. Its pretty charming to say the least but also has a side warning of how sometimes there can be cases of mistaken identity or lack of communication or misunderstandings and the fragility of building your friendships online rather in-person. The story itself does blend itself well together and as the series moves along, less and less is hidden in-game and more in reality.

LENGTH/PACING

Love O2O has the fantastic length of 30 episodes which borders on my personal belief of the upper limit of where an idol drama usually should be.

The execution and pacing here is very good. 30 episodes with the amount of characters and story arc gives the story a sufficient amount of character development while also giving the story a chance to focus not only on the romantic angles but also touch of friendship, bromance, family, etc. The majority of the story is set over the happenings of a budding relationship that starts at the end of a university semester and the summer time and then jumps forward at the end to push forward the timeline and give it a proper ending. That is a good way to do it because life is always full of crazy events but sometimes its those first moments when its goes from ultra sweet to building a solid foundation. Its why Love O2O doesn’t drag at all and stays fun from beginning to end.

CHARACTERS/CHEMISTRY

love o2o

If we look at characters and chemistry, our main leads and couple is Wei Wei, played by Zheng Shuang and Xiao Nai, played by Yang Yang. They are fantastic together and probably one of the best TV ships that could happen (in my short Chinese drama time). What works for them is that their characters are almost perfect from the outside and we soon find out that they each have their similarities and balance between them. Its in their actions and their pure intentions for each other that makes them so charming to watch. Plus, their relationship sprouts of Wei Wei adoration of Xiao Nai and idolization as he is the good-looking and smart senior student in school who all the girls swoon over, while as the show goes on, you can see that Xiao Nai doesn’t care of those things but rather its love at first sight on his side that he knows that she’s the right one and doesn’t know how to be a good boyfriend and just tries his best to protect her and support her.

love o2o

On the other hand, the second leads are Er Xi (Mao Xiao Tong) and Cao Guang (Bai Yu) who are the opposite of the main leads couple because they start off disliking each other, which is the more typical way of how most romantic leads start out in these dramas. However, these two are very fun characters while both of their story arcs have a slight frustrating moments, both regarding each other as well as in terms of friendship and crushes.

love o2o

Finally, relationships can be bromances and Love O2O thrives in that department, whether its the bromance between Xiaonai and his roommates, which turn out to be his work team as the series moves forward after their graduation or the girl friends (who really do have less part here) of Weiwei. However, the bromance here is fantastic especially as the friendship expands to a fifth member of the group as they get into the work space area. They add the fun and comedy also which rounds out the story a lot to keep it very light-hearted.

Finally, we take a look at the “enemies”. Be it the love rivals or the schoolyard internet bullies or the competing companies for the projects, it falls into the tone here because as frustrating as they can be, they never feel that harmful especially when they always find some positive outcome or enlightenment for the characters, which is nice to see because it keeps the series in a very positive light and gives hope especially to the younger characters who find their way. Its in the details of the script and the writer for this series manages to keep a good balance and remember the tone that its going for.

OVERALL

Love O2O definitely is one of my faves because of its positivity. There are more tears of joy and happiness and swooning over cute and endearing moments as well as being touched over the perfection of Xiaonai as a boyfriend who thrives in communication and trust over Weiwei no matter what other people say and believes his own eyes and experiences. Its span of touching different modern day themes and issues especially as we navigate the online landscape whether in gaming or blogging. It manages to focus on the love here but also give it a good dose of friendships as well as the reality of school, work and the challenges in life overall. Its charming and fun, romantic and cute, inspiring and positive: all the things I like about TV series.

TV Binge: Rush to the Dead Summer (夏至未至, 2017)

After the massive love for A Love So Beautiful (review), I went backwards to check out Hu Yitian’s previous role, which is a fairly smaller supporting role which was probably only about half of the series in very small doses in Rush to the Dead Summer, adapted from a 2006 romance novel originally called 1995-2005 Rush to the Dead Summer written by Guo Jingming . The ending was changed in the version. I haven’t read the story but after the ending felt the need to hunt down the actual ending to draw some comparisons and I will touch on that as well.

RUSH TO THE DEAD SUMMER (夏至未至, 2017)

rush to the dead summer

Cast: Cheney Chen, Shuang Zheng, Jingting Bai, Biyun Chai, Zitong Xia, Hehuizi Zheng, Hanchen Pang, Uvin Wang, Jingyang Ni

The love and growth of a group of young people from the same high school. – IMDB

QUOTE

People say we meet seven versions of ourselves during our youth. One bright and beautiful, one laden with grief, one is gorgeous, one that takes risks, one that is stubborn, one that is soft, and the last one is in the middle of maturing. On the road to maturity, we would experience rain and wind, encounter thistles and thorns. We will swallow our anger and we would also strongly retaliate. Of course, we hadn’t anticipated that there is a price to pay for this so-called maturity. Sometimes, even if we know that we’ll be punished, we’ll still bravely step forward because these are our true selves. Before we are polished to shine, we carry sharp edges and thorns all over, and fearless confidence and determination so we can be dashing heroes for a brief moment. – Li Xia, Rush to the Dead Summer, Episode 5.

You can watch the series with English subtitles on Youtube below:

STORY

Rush to the Dead Summer focuses on 5 different characters over the course of 10 years of their life from their senior high years to their adult life. There are a few supporting characters that also get a voice however, those primary five are the main focal points where these other characters pop up for whichever duration. While not as defined as the source material structure, there is a very accurate focus on various characters. It focuses on friendships and romantic relationships as well as each characters hurdles from family, school and their career choices.

The series can be split into various acts. The first building the foundation of the characters and relationships set during the senior high years that has a much longer focus of over 20 episodes. The second act is the post secondary education phase which looks at seeking career dreams, university and finding their path into setting into the real world which could be considered the shorter act because it sets up for the third act which is the real world. Because of this shift in different stages of their life, the story ends up having a decent pacing and also brings up a very real draw in these characters where different primary characters will fall to the background accordingly when some other characters will have their own moments and their stories, just as in real life when friends will each have their own moments to celebrate or experience and the others become their support and audience.

The story tone also has those shifts because of these different stages accordingly. The first act is more innocent high school moments with a focus on Li Xia (Shuang Zheng) and Xiaosi Fu (Cheney Chen) and their romance while also focusing on the bromance between Xiaosi Fu and Zhi-ang Lu (Jingting Bai) and the friendships between Li Xia and Qiqi Cheng (Biyun Chai) as well as Li Xia and Yu Jian (Zitong Xia). Its a building of new friends, maintaining of old friendships and learning about romances and the coming of age of embracing the things that we truly desire and knowing when to fight for them. In the second act, it becomes fairly shorter as everyone splits up into their own segments. The romance between Li Xia and Xiaosi become more developed while the pursuing of their own dreams become a big focal point for both Qiqi and Yu Jian in their own ways defined by their own values while Zhi-ang chooses a new path completely that takes him into a new environment. In the last act, its the final bits as a lot of secrets get revealed, different personalities and motives get revealed and the adult world proves to be one with much more serious consequences for their actions bring dilemmas and challenges and all kinds of conflicts at every turn.

Rush of the Dead Summer’s story sounds like a very familiar teen coming of age kind of drama. In many ways, its hard to argue that it isn’t. The uniqueness of it is how it executes its through changing the different voices and giving the story a moment to move around flexibly while making sure that each of these five characters are ones that we care about to a certain degree.

LENGTH/PACING

Rush to the Dead Summer clocks in at 46 episodes. Odd number? I know it is. With these series, they fall into the borderline of having pacing issues because it can very well go into the pacing a little too different. However, this series uses different characters and point of views, experiences and perpetual stories  that it makes it never feel like it drags on for too long. The only issue here is that some characters fall into the background and the main issues do lie with accepting when the characters we love more may flip around in the end and fall behind the scenes more or the story loses that focus and it gets more dramatic as these characters get older. In terms of length and pacing, Rush of the Dead Summer does a relatively good job. If anything drags along, it can very well be because the character story that its focusing on is getting too much screen time and the other character in preference doesn’t, but there is a good amount of care in executing it so that the different characters or different pairs all get their due time whether the audience agrees with it or not.

CHARACTER/CHEMISTRY

Rush of the Dead Summer focuses on these 5 characters: Li Xia, Xiaosi Fu, Zhi-ang Lu, Yu Jian  and Cici Cheng. In the previous sections, I’ve already mentioned some of the romance relationships here and some of the friendships in focus. Before we look at the effectiveness of these relationships, lets take a quick look at the characters.

Li Xia plays a focal character. She is a mild-tempered, hard working and shy girl who has a specific set of values and makes sure that everyone she cares about will be taken care of and respected. Because of this, she is good friends with every one of the other characters. Her junior high friend is Qiqi, her love interesting in senior high is Xiaosi, Zhi-ang has a crush on her but also enjoys being her good friend, and Yu Jian became her friend because she did little things in senior high that made her feel warm. Li Xia is a likable character even if at times, her indecisiveness and her meek personality will make it hard to not feel bad or feel frustrated with her not learning more to protect herself.

With that said, her main relationship chemistry is with Xiaosi Fu. Xiaosi is a more introvert and perfectionist character. He is the first in their grade, he has incredible artistic skills and doesn’t know how to express himself a lot and is very straight-forward with his words. However, his care is in his actions and its because of these things that Li Xia and him has quite a good bit of chemistry. Every series has a guy that is like this and they always end up having this awkward moments that make for some cute and sweet moments.

While it seems like Zhi-ang Lu is the best friend of Xiaosi and has this love triangle, it never quite goes into fruition because he never really pursues her but chooses to be the happy character in the series that goes from the positive and social outgoing personality who flirts with other girls and has one of the biggest changes where he becomes more focused on his dreams and finding a different path while also in the final act, the story suddenly shifts its voice into having a heavier focus on him and a new girl character that enters the picture called Yan Mo (He Hui Zhi Zheng). I’m not going to talk about Yan Mo’s character but its one that brings on a lot of changes and also delivers a lot of sweeter moments in the final act especially when the relationship and career of the first primary couple enters a much of dramatic turn of events affected by a lot of outside factors that this new relationship and pursuit gives off a new comedic angle.

At the same time, its at this time that we can talk about Yu Jian, Qiqi and the different friendships because as great as the chemistry of the relationships here. Perhaps some of the better moments are how the different friendships develop. Yu Jian has a more set goals and has the opposite personality of Li Xia and stands up for her constantly which makes their friendship solid in their own way in a more reliable way where we soon learn, some friendships will change because of the change in perspective and that happens with Qiqi and Li Xia where they may know each other longer but their friendship slowly also has its cracks. Qiqi also is designed to be a more “bad” sort of character and while I never found her good. Her parts and self-destruction and other bits usually prove be more frustrating to watch and probably one of the not so well written characters. While Yu Jian remains one of the better written ones.

OVERALL

Rush of the Dead Summer is unique because it takes on the different voices of five characters and creates a tree of stories for each of them throughout 10 years of their life. There are a lot of quotable moments and share a lot of different sides of life between all of them as they encounter different happy, sad, frustrating and angry moments. Its one very much worth watching. Some people complain about the fact that the main male lead is very rigid in his role but to be fair, his role is meant to be that way and his character because of the initial way changes over the time as a development angle and probably was done deliberately. There are little details in the series that I caught on the second viewing which actually makes these characters and gives them signs on how their character and nature will develop over the course of the series. My only issue is how it chooses to end the series which is hard to decide whether its a better ending or a worse one that the original one in the source material. Its a whole end game issue of which version and type of viewer you are. For myself, it felt a bit rushed and a bit lazy to not have expanded at least a little further on it. The ending few episodes could have definitely used a little more symmetry to the beginning act to give it a more well-rounded feeling.

Main Theme

Valentine’s Marathon & TV Binge: What is Love (2012)

Happy Valentine’s Day! We made it here sadly with very little posts so you will see tomorrow that I will most probably be extending the marathon throughout the month. The stars really didn’t align for us this month with the PC issues and such. However, we will deal with the blog stuff later.

Today, I have lined up such a fitting TV Binge to add into the Valentine’s Marathon and that 2012 Taiwanese drama, What is Love. I just wrapped it up over the weekend and maybe I will even start doing a ranking of Taiwanese series soon. There is an incredibly small amount of photos for this show online since I am working with a computer that can’t read Chinese so I went back to the series to screenshot some pictures. Hopefully you will like it. I apologize if the quality isn’t that great in advance.

Lets check it out!

What is Love (2012)

What is Love poster

Cast: Chris Wu, Jade Chou, Duncan Lai, King Chin, Kimi Hsia, Gina Lim

Thirty-two-year-old Li Yi Hua (Jade Chou) is longing for a romantic relationship and wants to marry a good man. Along comes Bai Zong You (Chris Wu), who breaks women’s hearts with one-night stands. Bai Zong You sets his sights on wooing Li Yi Hua next. What she doesn’t know is that she might have true feels for him. – Wikipedia

I’d like to think that I am fairly picky when I watch Taiwanese series mostly because I have been watching them a long time and with it, comes the expectations that there are so many better ones and hoping to find ones that truly find a nice balance of romance and comedy depending on the story they deliver. Of course, I have also fallen out of the loop for a while since I stopped watching them for a few years until they started appearing on Netflix last year. These series fall into their own tropes but they also have some nice silly bits that usually help with the story. I went into What Is Love having no knowledge of what the story is about and a little bit skeptical on how this would turn out. Let me tell you, it was definitely a very pleasant surprise. There are many plot points here that break the normal perception of what these characters would act and somewhat flips the typical story on its head a little. Plus, it creates a lovely balance of romance drama and romance comedy as well as comedic breaks with both its dialogue and its characters. At the same time, the story never forgets that when the journey of love includes a lot of factors, be it your best friends, your family and all kinds of elements and these characters play a decent role in how these two main characters approach their decisions.

On top of that, this is a completely new cast to myself. The only person here that I wanted to watch was Chris Wu (aka Kangren Wu) who is the main male role Bai Zong-You who was in Autumn’s Concerto which I loved quite a bit as well. You can check out the TV Binge here. In that one, he played the supporting male character which was the total opposite of this role. I have to say, while I liked that role, this role was really fun and matched his handsome and charming appearance.

What I Loved:

  • The Songs and Opening Theme Clip: I usually don’t talk a ton about music around here except for the music obsessions segment but I thought this opening clip was adorable, especially that surf board balancing part. Not just the opening theme clip was really nice but the songs were all very fitting to whatever scene they were playing in.
  • Chris Wu & Jade Chou: Chris Wu (aka Wu Kangren) plays Bai Zong-You, the playboy who becomes mesmerized by the challenge of proving his love to Jade Chou’s character, Li Yi-Hua. A lot of the “romance” is in the beginning because the course of the film is about them both realizing what is love. They are at the opposite spectrums in many sense. However, consider the chase and the enlightening moments for Bai Zong-You being the really great parts, whether he does it through revenge or plotting or slowly finding the way to approach his love interest and acknowledge love with her. At the other end, Li Yi-Hua is one of those rare characters in Asian TV series that really shows a strong sense of a woman that acknowledges her loneliness but will not compromise her love for someone who is undeserving no matter how much pain she feels in having to go through the heartbreak. what is love
  • The Guys: One of the best points of the series is its ability to create a balance of characters. Even if you look at these guys here who are best friends. They have varying personalities as well and their own lessons to learn. Each of them fit somewhere else in how they see love and a lot of the humor is in their silliness. This links heavily to the next point that I liked. 

What is Love

  • The Ladies: Just like the guys, the ladies here are quite fun to watch. Our main character of course has already been talked about before, but her best friends are equally diverse in personality from Xiao Lu on the left who plays a young divorcee with a kid who is really silly to the opposite, Lan Jun who plays the mature friend who reasons and sees through a lot of the bullshit.

What is Love

  • Love Interest: I’ve always been the type that finds it funny how the supporting character that you know the main character won’t end up with is always very perfect and deserving to be loved. Taiwanese series loves to do that and this one honestly gives Yi Hua a worthy man in Shao Qian (played by Duncan Lai). He’s quite the gentleman. what is love

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Too Many Flashbacks: One of the biggest pet peeves I have with TV series, especially of the Korean and sometimes Taiwanese nature is their love for flashbacks. I get flashbacks especially when it helps elevate an emotion but when you get the same flashback every episode just to emphasize on a character’s hooked onto this moment, its okay to drop a few of those.
  • Lengthy Episodes: While this didn’t really turn me off so much as its inconvenient to find a place to stop watching, the 1.5 hour long episodes are quite abnormal to me. I wasn’t sure if it was just a Netflix choice but as I was researching the show, it seems it was aired with that episode length, a little baffling in my mind but what do I know. Since this was quite binge-worthy, I didn’t quite mind the lengthy episode since the power of the pause button and Netflix saves my spot whenever I take a break.

what is love

Overall, What is Love was quite the pleasant surprise. It delivered a really fun story. Not only did it give a rather strong female character with a lot of personality, it also gave an array of cast that were unique in their own way but impacted the story as well to create a nice balance. Taiwanese TV series like these are romantic comedy affairs but somethings it forgets to find that balance and while there were some odd ends here and there that went a little overboard, this one achieved that balance really well. It always remembered to toss in some funny moments to never let the drama last way too long. Plus, just like Yi-Hua needed to learn to accept a playboy and Bai Zong-You had to gain her trust, we saw both sides of the story and was able to at least feel like he could be trusted also. I’ve always been fascinated with the idea of “What is Love” because it differs in so many ways and isn’t always just romantic and this one does tackle all of it. There is no formula but at least, its a really fun journey thats us on a nice ride as the characters all figure out their version of love and thats pretty awesome in my book.

TV Binge: Zumbo’s Just Desserts (Season 1, 2016)

The Super Bowl weekend just ended and this has been in queue to be written for a while so I figured that we’re in Valentine’s marathon time and desserts are a staple here. I’m not sure I’ll get any desserts done as work has been hectic but I’ve been getting lots of baking ideas and techniques I want to learn from watching this reality competitive Australian baking show called Zumbo’s Just Desserts, hosted by Adriano Zumbo and Rachel Khoo. At this point, I put it on in the background a lot just to keep myself motivated so I’ve watched it a few times to say the very least. With that said, you probably already know how I feel about it.

Let’s check it out!

Zumbo’s Just Desserts (Season 1, 2016)

Zumbo's Just Desserts

Judges: Adriano Zumbo, Rachel Khoo

Assistant: Gigi Falanga

A competitive baking show? Count me in! Despite my many unsuccessful scheduling to get back to baking, it is still an immense passion of mine. I honestly don’t know fancy bakers around the world so it was the first time that I even heard about Adriano Zumbo. He is paired up with Rachel Khoo who is seemingly not only as knowledgeable about dessert flavors but also quite charismatic to watch as a team. However, their 12 competitors are the real stars here because they are all different in personality and while most have likeable traits and great aspirations and fantastic talent, they also have somewhat of a villainous competitor here who helps balance out the show and really give it some human drama on who to root for.

Zumbo's Just Desserts

The show breaks down into 12 episodes which sees the contestant with the lowest score be eliminated from the show in each episode. Each episode consists of two rounds. The first is called a Sweet Sensations task which runs along the theme of a day. There were color coordinated fresh fruits, magic, fire, kids birthday cake just to name a few. The two with lowest scores go into the second round head to head to fight for survival in a Zumbo Test. If you didn’t know Adriano Zumbo before, well, his Zumbo Creations are jaw-dropping awesome. Complex but awesome. And this probably will give a great idea of his dessert creator abilities. In the Zumbo Test, the two have to recreate his dessert in the allotted time. The various themes and absolutely Zumbo’s creations are the highlights here. The struggles and the successes make this show really fun to watch. Its always down to the wire and its really exciting to watch because the skills and ideas are really fantastic and watching them being executed is a lot of fun.

Zumbo's Just Desserts

What I did like a lot for the show, even if it felt a little showy and over the top was the location and set design. It had these colorful tones and felt like walking into Willy Wonka factory. Its pretty fascinating and emphasizes on the wonderful world of baking. Well, its wonderful because I love baking. If you put aside the setting, something else I really like is how they introduce each of the plates that the competitors conceptualize in this sketch like below. I think its really neat because you get to see whether the end results actually happens. Let’s face it, the best part of reality TV is that things happen out of their control and its those struggles and how they push through it that make it fun to watch.

Zumbo's Just Desserts

Overall, Zumbo’s Just Desserts is a really great show. Its fun and cool and very exciting to watch. There’s a nice balance in the competitors on their different styles and strengths. Zumbo and Rachel Khoo are a nice team together. The setting emphasizes on the enchanting world they want to have here. Zumbo Creations are just from another world and makes me want to work hard to bake better and learn different techniques (although the hard part is everything I do has to have a somewhat vegan twist). I have a few criticisms of the show but nothing that has stopped me from binging it 3 times already on Netflix. I would have loved to see them actually talk out how they determined the scores though as sometimes their criticism seem to not exactly match the scores they give. I’m honestly just hoping there will be a Season 2 soon.

TV Binge: Close Your Eyes Before It’s Dark (2014)

**I’m currently in a work deadline rush due on Halloween. The horror of it all! Sorry for skipping on the posts. The intention was there to write. I just couldn’t find a moment. So here is yesterday’s post and if by any luck things go well today at work *fingers crossed* I will have two posts for tomorrow, one review and one special Halloween post that I always do every year for wrap-up. **

With all that out of the way, I am yet again changing directions on the horror marathon and chose quite the rare appearance in Taiwanesw series which is set with a horror background with something of a And Then There Were None vibe called Close Your Eyes Before It’s Dark.

Lets check it out!

Close Your Eyes Before It’s Dark

close your eyes before it's dark

Cast: Man-shu Jian, Bryan Shu-Hao Chang, Allen Chen, Blue Lan, Yen Tsao, Chun-Haw Hsu, Ke-Fang Sun, Sheng-Ping Chu, Tammy Darshana Lai, Shang-Ho Huang, Di-Yang Huang

While vacationing at a mountain cabin, a group of longtime friends uncover an old scandal that could have deadly consequences.-IMDB

Where to even start with this one? Lets just get this fact out of the way in case anyone here is a Taiwan movie/TV series connoisseurs: I don’t know watch as many of Taiwanese productions as I’d like and if you have any of these Taiwanese horror/thriller genre movies or TV series, please go ahead and recommend them to me. With that said, Close Your Eyes (as I will call the series from now on) is pretty refreshing to see. Just like TW series won’t work for everyone, the same applies here. There are some odd choices they make here and to me are missteps however, they have a whole different that they overall nail and for the most part, it actually feels more like a thriller with horror elements which isn’t a bad thing because that is one of my favorite movie genres/subgenres (not sure which its considered). Thrillers are hard to get down good especially with trying to instill ineasiness in its audience and lets just say, not everyone can be Pretty Little Liars. I draw this comparison because when the show started it, these young actresses were quite fresh faces just as the cast in Close Your Eyes are. The story does take the stance of backflashing to the last time they were camping at this cabin before the group had a fallout. Part of it is looking at what broke them apart and also what keeps them together as friends in both the past and present and gives it something of a parallel.

Whats works here:

  • The atmosphere: Close Your Eyes is set in the rather cliche stranded in a country cabin and the storm had blocked the road and knocked out the only cell/telephone line so no communication outside and can’t go out either as they are also located on a mountain. However, the proper use of this and its sounds and knowing when to just let silence and subtlety take its place is done well enough here to get its audience a little tense. The lighting and such are also done pretty well here to give it some creepy vibes here and there. Its a little cliche at times but it still works alright. However, for hardcore horror fans, this one might still be lackluster.
  • Opening & Ending Theme: It sounds really stupid to talk about the themes but the way they play with the sounds actually makes the subtle soundtrack as the ending theme so effectively creepy! The opening does a really cool creepy sequence which shows the tone of the show and where its headed.
  • Suspense: I have to be on record to be a little hesitant on using this as it works for the most part.  A lot of the reveals and twists work relatively well however, there are some parts where it hints a little too much to lose its suspense. However, it does well to keep the audience suspicious.

Close Your Eyes

What  doesn’t work so much:

  • Acting: There really is only one thing that took me out from the show a lot of times and that was the acting. Some of the actors here and the expressions they made were really hilarious and overexaggerated. It felt like they were trying to portray something but the plot never gave their character the plot that justified it. I’ve explained before that unlike American television, Taiwan/Hong Kong/Chinese/Korean/Japanese series are all done in self-contained series so when a season is done then the story is wrapped up. If there were to be a sequel, then they’ll take another story arc. However, this one, there are a lot of characters and some of the characters don’t seem to get the depth they deserve, making them mean less and in a show like this, you need to be able to cheer on the characters and want them to survive. However, some of these ones here are a little lacklusters. One of the characters that show up later on are actually the worst. I actually laughed at some of his expressions really hard and that really took me out of the immersion as that was nearing the ending episode where the whole thing would reveal itself. I have to make the exception that the older actress here who plays Fang, the mountain cabin owner is a more seasoned actress and does pretty good.
  • Voice-overs: The worst part of the show and some of the most head-scratching moments as to why they chose to do this is give voice-overs to the corpses. The corpses would have conversations and sometimes it would be little hints and clues however, it was these brief moments that made the show feel nonsensical. I didn’t see the purpose of it and would have rather that they didn’t. Think of The Autopsy of Jane Doe (although I won’t or I’ll get nightmares) but non-talking corpses wins the creepy factor any day.

Close Your Eyes is not too bad. It had its good and bad elements. Like I said before, its more of a thriller more than anything. It tries to get in a few twists and for the most part, succeeds even in its cliched moments. You can see the effort was made to get the atmosphere and the tone down while trying to highlight the significant relationships here. However, it does need a little work to piece the clues a little better although it did surprise me a few times, so I’m pretty pleased with that also and gave me a few creeps. If you like a quick Taiwanese series and explore what could hopefully be a first step into some more horror Taiwanese series, this is pretty decent. I was expecting it to be much worse. The surprise has to do with why I think its alright and probably worth a watch if you are into some suspense and mystery along with some light creepy setting.

TV Binge: Orange is the New Black (Season 5, 2017)

Next up in the overdue TV Binge recaps is the newest season of Orange is the New Black. I saw this some time before Fantasia Festival so it got backed up but here we are.

As usual, if you plan on watching Season 5 and haven’t yet or haven’t caught up with Orange is the New Black, this is a spoiler warning. The content itself will fall into some spoilers.

Orange is the New Black (Season 5, 2017)

Orange is the New Black

Creator: Jenji Kohan

Cast: Taylor Schilling, Kate Mulgrew, Uzo Aduba, Danielle Brooks, Dascha Polanco, Selenis Leyva, Nick Sandow, Yael Stone, Taryn Manning, Lea DeLaria, Adrienne C. Moore, Laura Prepon, Jackie Cruz, Natasha Lyonne

 Orange Is The New Black has come a long way from what it was. Last season took away Poussey and had the Black Lives Matter theme while giving a riot the grounds to start with the new guards coming in place and showing their true colors. Whether it was from inexperience or from their brutality, they all contributed to the rebellion and with all that has been going on, Daya ends Season 4 holding a gun to the despicable Humphrey’s head. The questions that lingered over their heads were plentiful. What direction would this take?

Season 5 has 13 episodes however the show’s time frame is the processes of a riot or prison shutdown that the prisoners enforce over three days. With the different groups in Litchfield, the prison falls apart. The main powers now go with the Latinas as Daya uses her gun to stay in control. Daya however is also controlled by Maria. However, the power shifts eventually turn to Leanne and Angie. While the powers shift, we have groups dealing with the trapped but not able to escape in time celebrity, Judy King who is now being turned around for others to bid. Taystee and her crew are trying to use this riot to make it mean something and get justice for Poussey’s death. While there are peacemakers outside that are happy to sit this one out to not increase their sentence with Alex. Unlikely friendships and alliances, unsolved or repressed issues that has surfaced and many of how to approach this riot and lockdown on Litchfield is what makes this season what it is.

orange is the new black

My main issue with this season was the slow start. I know some of my friends enjoyed the entire season. I’ve been feeling this way about Orange is the New Black for a while now where it stumbles on finding its footing and its starting to get lost in what made it great in the first place. However, somewhere around episode 4 or 5, I remember something happening that truly changes the pace and from there on, its emotional and funny and quirky and odd. The characters find where they stand and what they want. We start seeing characters from outside the facility and the balance of those trapped inside also. This seasons’s heavy hitters had a change of pace, giving more spotlight to Taystee, played by Danielle Brooks. While she was always one of the main characters, this season gave her more emotions to deal with as well as inner conflict and finding her strength. At the same time, the girls who play meth heads or drug addicts or whatnot, Angie and Leanne also get more space as their stupidity takes the spotlight when they end up miraculously having the power and abuse it in the oddest way. Boo also has something of a stronger story arc which links to Linda, Caputo’s girlfriend who gets caught up in the mix from being at the wrong place at the wrong time. At the same time, the highlight definitely goes to Red and Blanca forming an unlikely alliance.

Orange Is The New Black Season 5

That is really all I have to say about the latest season of Orange is the New Black. Overall, it takes a few episodes to find its footing, then its a crazy ride to the finale. We tackle the characters trying to find peace with the death of Poussey as well as focusing on a few other relationships and how this whole situation may have brought out the best and the worst in everyone. There are some fun, funny, stupid and a lot of over the top moments. Its not my favorite season but it definitely won me over as we got to the end. The finale was pretty satisfying and it’ll be interesting to see how the next season will go with how its all turned out.

TV Binge: 3% (Season 1, 2016)

Netflix Originals are definitely taking TV in a huge whirlwind. One of that came out not too long ago is Brazilian Netflix TV series, 3%, a dystopian future of sorts. Its description reminded me a little of The Hunger Games mixed with something else. Fact is, I’m starting to fall out of this dystopian world phase except it seems they aren’t done yet. However, this one did catch my eye, plus, I’ve never watched any Brazil productions before so I was intrigued.

Let’s check it out!

3% (Season 1, 2016)

3% netflix

Creator: Pedro Aguilera

Cast: João Miguel, Bianca Comparato, Michel Gomes, Rodolfo Valente, Vaneza Oliveira, Rafael Lozano, Vivane Porto, Luciana Paes

A thriller set in a world sharply divided between progress and devastation, where people are given the chance to make it to the “better side” but only 3% of the candidates succeed. – IMDB

Dystopian futures are done to death. Look at the books and movies and tv series, it just doesn’t end. Is that a bad thing? Most of the time especially when plots feel like its rinse and repeat. It is hard to not have exhausted all the dystopian ideas since the very popular The Hunger Games has taken over, then bringing even more popularity to the fact that Battle Royale was the unmentioned inspiration and basis which was done much better except its a foreign film. Talking about foreign, 3% is a foreign TV series and while I confess that it has some components that reminds us of The Hunger Games, it strays rather far away from that. Maybe not the dark tone but rather in the way that it treats it more for an older audience. In short, 3% is a unique series. I binged it in pretty much one sitting. There are eight episodes of about 50 minutes each, which doesn’t take too long and for the most part, it does a decent job at keeping it intriguing. My only little criticism would be that it was pretty awesome up until about episode five and partially six and it made me realize why I didn’t like those episodes as much.

3% Netflix

3% has a good idea and a pretty decent execution. While the poor and rich being separated seems like a very generic idea, the way they choose to  design where the Inland poor people live is a lovely production setting and it shows the contrast with the midpoint of being at the testing facility sort of building where the selected group have to undergo a bunch of tests which will seek out the best of the crowd, the 3%, as the series is called. While it seems that the tests start off rather innocent with a cube building challenge, and the only dangers seem to be the ruthless characters that will do anything to win, the challenges do get worse and focus heavily on the inner monster buried within them. How they choose to get out of it or resolve the situation will determine who makes it to the next stage. If the group is doing too well, then the people controlling them will figure out a twist. While it does sound very Hunger Games and The Maze Runner, the intensity of the situation lies in a psychological level as our main group of candidates are unveiled to us by their back stories each in a different episode (which is very much like Orange is the New Black strategy). The technology here seems advanced and the characters are unique to watch. As friendships and allies and enemies are built, we start see the character develop as they try to strive for this better future. Even if the future is an unknown as to what they are to face or where this offshore is or what lies ahead, they all believe that anything is better than where they are.

3% Netflix

The best part of 3% has to go to its young cast who play as the candidates. These handful of casts had depth and they were able to portray it very skillfully, making us really capture the character that they were going through. Perhaps, we can’t quite go into the characters without talking about the plot a little more. While most dystopian movies like these ones are focused on solely the candidates the majority of the time, 3% as a TV series takes the time to really let us know the subplots that are bubbling in the background. The candidates still hold a large place for the first four episodes and that is one of the reasons for the build-up being very engaging. Their tasks are not easy and many times are rather difficult choices. It shows us who we want to side with and that what you see might not exactly be who they really are. Each of them have their skills to be a part of this no matter where they come from or their background or even if they have a disability. They all have some weakness but a lot of strength in various departments to make up for it. With that said, the subplots go to the background controllers. We never learn a lot about the people in the background who control these tests but the main showrunner (I forgot the title he has) is called Ezequiel and this is his dream job who now is under investigation from the main council as they send a woman to watch over his every move called Aline. As he tries to keep himself together and hold his role, he also needs to prove that he is capable of this job especially now that not only he under investigation but the first crime on the Offshore has also happened and they need to find out who is the undercover candidate rumored to be in their tests that are part of The Cause, which is a secret group against the entire concept of 3% and the Offshore and is set out to ruin it.

3% netflix

Ezequiel and Aline are actually rather well-built characters as well. However, the fault in this series comes in using an entire episode to talk about Ezequiel’s past when we’ve only seen snippets of him and in a rather bad light of who he is that the episode dedicated to him made it rather unengaging. I realized how much the series had made a fantastic effort and successfully helped connect us with each of the candidates but somehow, didn’t spend as much time making us care for Ezequiel even in all his little moments of strategizing and keeping balance between the ruthless tests, his questionable solutions and decisions and his verbal wars with Aline. However, the series does pick up again as the situation escalates to uncontrollable levels and the subplots start becoming a little more relevant and also makes the character, mostly the hated realistic ones into proving that they actually do have a heart, while others have changed because of the need to survive. Everyone here has a different agenda and perhaps that makes this one not only about survival but these desires and whatever haunts them or the secrets they hide will be what makes or breaks them by the end.

Overall, 3% is a pretty great series. I wasn’t expecting much when I started it but despite two slower paced episodes, the sum of it was thrilling and engaging to watch. The characters are done well and developed properly. While the story itself seems generic, they way they execute it along with the production sets and everything together makes for an impressive experience. I’m pretty happy that it is going to have a second season and look forward to checking it out!

TV Binge: Scream (Season 2, 2016)

The second season of Scream has finally concluded a week or two month ago . Just in time for Halloween. With the franchise features and everything, it actually caught me by surprise that the season wasn’t done earlier and in turn, this missed the Halloween month although I did binge it over the Halloween weekend. I mean, it was a true binge. If you missed my Season 1 review, you can check it out HERE. There’s quite a few haters for this series and honestly, at the end of Season 1, I kind of grew fond of it. Now that I’ve caught up with all the Scream franchise, I started this up wondering if I would enjoy it the same way. Plus, a fun note, all the episodes are named after actual horror movies, which is a nice touch.

Scream (Season 2, 2016)

Scream TV Series

Creators: Jay Beattie, Jill E. Blotevogel, Dan Dworkin

Cast: Willa Fitzgerald, Bex Taylor-Klaus, John Karna, Carlson Young, Tracy Middendorf, Amadeus Serafini, Santiago Segura, Anthony Ruivivar, Sean Grandillo, Tom Maden, Bryan Batt

It has been a few days since I finished Scream Season 2 (when I first started writing this up) and I am just completely deeply in love with it (still am). Scream has its flaws but compared to the first season that took a little while to really pick up and get their characters in place, despite some obvious teen cast troupes, Scream 2 started off really strong and only got better as it reached mid season. The reintroduction of a new killer in the twisted Brandon James mask is still unnerving to see and just the reaction of the killer and the brutality in the kills are pretty intense. Not to mention, we continue a few months after the events and we learn that Emma has had a breakdown and went away to seek psychiatric help and is back in time for the new school year and ready to embrace all those judgemental eyes from the nobodies in school. We see that because of what happened in the last season, The Morgue Podcast is taken over by Noah and he has pegged them the Lakewood Six. In the last season,  (Spoiler Alert) we ended with the reveal that Audrey was part of Piper’s plans and was involved in some way. In Season 2, we start right off with Audrey being regretful of it and actually quite in the dark because the killer is back and starting off by threatening to reveal her involvement with the previous events, making Noah’s assumption of a partner with Piper becoming viable, what Audrey didn’t know was there was someone else in the equation.

Scream (Season 2)

The old cast is back with their own set of problems. Coming back from something as traumatic as being chased after by a killer is something that is pretty hard to handle. Everyone is healing in their own ways even if they don’t acknowledge it as healing. To be honest, I’m still not a huge fan of our main “heroine” here. The final girls are talked about a lot here. Another horror reference. It is one thing I love very much about how it is rather “meta”. I never know how to use that word but the Scream franchise itself plays on that a lot. Having someone who is fascinated by serial killers which is Noah in this one, a final girl which is Emma is this one. There is always someone with secrets and someone who is preppy and slutty but maybe is a little more, like Brooke. Brooke remains one of my favorite characters in Scream 2 because she has depth and actually acts kind of human in light of the return of the killer and everything that happens. There’s also Bex Taylor-Klaus who plays Audrey that I think the series has done a good job with but I already elaborated on her above. Oh wait, and of course, there’s Kieran. Also a disposable character in my book because him and Emma are getting tiring to watch. He kind of is around but isn’t. They have this relationship strain because of what happened in the last season. They continue to try to cast suspicions on him, as well as everyone else on who the partner could be. No one is left out in Season 2 on being the accomplice especially in the eyes of the police.

Scream 2

With that said, we need to look at the new additions because those are really exciting to talk about, for the most part. Stavo (full name: Gustavo), played by Santiago Segura is a great character. The young actor himself does a wonderful job. Stavo has so many layers. He is quite dark and doesn’t help that he is super creepy and says the weirdest things but we all know that the most suspicious person is rarely the person responsible. Plus, the thing he develops with Brooke is awesome! I don’t “ship” a lot of characters nowadays but them, I love to actual bits. On the same line of creepiness, Kieran’s cousin, Eli makes an appearance, played by Sean Grandillo. His role isn’t that huge but he is a pretty sketchy guy as well. He is always doing stuff that borders the grey areas. I only wish he had more camera time to build his character more. Eli felt a little wasted at times. Next up, a new character significant for a mention is the psychology brainiac, obviously paired up with Noah as love interest, Zoe, played by Kiana Ledé. A very good character also but somehow, the whole relationship thing for Noah took an interesting turn and then took a weird one which I started to not like Noah just a little. Zoe is a key part of the new cast and her character has some great moments. And also, did I mention that Stavo is the new sheriff’s son and the sheriff is a character I’m slightly on the fence about. I started liking the connection the story gives him in the second half but for the most of the first half, I question his judgement.

Scream TV Series Season 2

We can’t really do an overview of a TV Binge without looking at the killer, right? I’m going to admit that Scream TV Series has taken me surprise even in the first season. It is gory at times and really creepy. It builds a nice suspicion. The killer is crafted so well in this series. I know that this is still a teen series and there might be some things left to be desired but in reality, this one focuses a lot on the fear and building up the backstory of Brandon James and last season’s Piper and now, the accomplice. The question remains: What is the connection? And this is even above who did it. I think it becomes a little more obvious nearing the last few episodes if you look closely at the details and the events of last season and the dialogue between Emma and Audrey in the final few episodes of Season 2 leading up to the final reveal. However, it took me by surprise and that is really all I want to say about it because then I’m heading into spoiler territory and I don’t want to do that (even if I want to talk about this series so much, that I got my husband to binge watch it also.)

As a final note, I loved Scream Season 2. There are some flaws but a lot of the character chemistry and story building and even having a nice lead-up for the next season makes it have so much to look forward to. And if you were wondering, I was alright with the Halloween Special because it paid homage to the original Scream. I was waiting to see when things would kind of converge a little and I’m happy that it did. Plus, as out of place as the Halloween Special was, I thought it still had a lot of cool and creepy moments. But that’s just coming from me, who gets scared easily.  On that note, I’m happy that Season 3 is renewed currently for 6 episodes (which is half a season is what I’m guessing and hopefully will have more if the ratings are good). I’m going to keep my eye on it.

TV Binge: Glee (Season 6 Finale, 2015)

Glee has taken us on a journey. Over the six years of episodes, they’ve gone through a lot and for those like myself who spent a lot of time watching it since it first started, it is a goodbye. One that has been expected but still, as you come to discover, a little hard. Its also one of the reasons why it has taken me about a month to get this up. Glee started its journey for the first few seasons in McKinley High School and saw the growth of its characters graduate high school and head off into their own futures staying in Lima or moving to New York or wherever else and finally after hardships still coming back together in Season 6. Sure, the last few seasons have kind of lost a bit of what it used to be but something about watching the final season and the further it gets to the finale, made it a little hard to let go. That just might be sentimental me talking, of course.

Again, I’m getting ahead of myself! Let’s check it out!

Glee (Season 6 Finale, 2015)

Glee Season 6

Creators: Ian Brennan, Brad Falchuk, Ryan Murphy

The final season of Glee. It is hard to imagine that Glee is has come to an end last year! It is. As much as I stopped watching it after feeling a little disappointed with the fourth season, it always had this nagging feeling to continue. I wasn’t crazy about Season 5 either and going into Season 6 was really trying to stay optimistic about it when I pressed play on the first episode. I feel Glee holds a lot of memories and for the fans, the second half of the seasom definitely improves immensely from the first half and we can see them taking the time to end the series respectfully and they definitely do. The best is seeing a final reunion of pretty much all the characters by the end and sending off a final encouraging message.

Glee

Lets breakdown the season in two parts. The first part, as mentioned before was not so engaging. For the most part, we start with hardships and Rachel picking up her pieces after bombing her career and finally finding a way to restart the glee club at McKinley High after Sue has become the principal and ruled out all arts from the school. It starts feeling a lot like how the show started but instead of Will, we have Rachel fighting. As they build up the Glee Club again, the next gen members group together but this time, the focus yet again is not on them but on the original Glee club group that shows up in rotation to help Rachel out, not only in driving Glee Club into the right direction. Here is where the show suffers a little in the sense that it proved that Glee was not viable as a long running show because the audience and crew grows attached to the characters and when these characters grow up and the focus is still on them, its hard to grow the cast and take it back to its roots at McKinley and the new Glee Club. The problems become redundant at times except with new voices. Some of amazing voices but yet they don’t get to hit their full potential.

Glee

In the second half, it is still focused on Glee Club andn their path to regionals. However, the main focus goes back to rounding out the season and all the loose ends with the old members, the cast the audience has grown to love (or hate). There are some moments that make no sense and some that are downright awkward. It made me wonder what I missed the whole time. However, the loose ends were done well whether it is for Sue Sylvester and Becky or Rachel, Kurt, Brittany or Sam. Everyone got something about having courage, taking challenges and finding themselves. It constantly paid respect to Corey Monteith’s character which is nice because he was significant to the show. The finale didn’t feel rushed and felt like it was a nice goodbye. It reminded me of a lot of the past early seasons of Glee and why I liked it. It also made me miss it but also knowing that it was the right time.

The final season of Glee is not the best season in its entire TV lifespan however, it is done in a decent and respectful way to the show and its fans. Perhaps it took a little while to get there in the first half but the second half was quite fun to watch. For fans of Glee, I feel like it shouldn’t disappont too much.

Are you a Glee fan? Did you finish the series?