Safe place

May. 16th, 2016 11:02 pm
ellestra: (root and shaw)
This episode was so awesome. I can't get over that Person of Interest is ending. This is all I ever wanted for AI stories.


So this is the final confirmation. Shaw is alive and back and we see what happened to her in all those months. All the brainwashing they do to find the secret hideout and the last remnants of the Machine and her team.

But we know the subway is still safe so we know that she didn't break. Not quite yet. But it keeps trying.

I knew from the beginning that Samaritan has planed Shaw's escape - it was just too convenient. Like some god planned that scenario to play out this way. I’m half-convinced it was all happening in Shaw's mind but I wasn't sure until she started glitching (by the pharmacy I was pretty sure). She is in full immersion - virtual reality that lures her with false safety so she takes Samaritan to the secret location. It just still glitches sometimes - especially when the entity running it needs to change scenario to get what it wants.

But this made me realise the most important part as soon as Shaw mentioned the method to resist torture. Root is her safe place. And then she admits it as she makes the simulation fail again. Root is her safe place. ♥

I don't ship very often but Root and Shaw had this chemistry form the very first torture scene. Samaritan looks for something else but for me the most important thing we learned from this simulation trip is that Root is as important to Shaw as Shaw is to Root.

So far, besides the kiss and pushing her to safety, all we saw was Root proclaiming her feelings and getting all crazy looking for Sameen. Before the kiss Shaw was mostly getting annoyed at Root’s overtures. Unless Root was in danger that is then she would drop everything to save her. Or if Root bribed her with violence and adventure.

What I mean we haven’t really seen how much Shaw cares about Root. Until now. And it was all Root ever wanted.

I love how Shaw’s fantasy has all the good moments. Escape, getting together with Root, hurting Lambert and Greer. Too bad it’s all Samaritan’s ploy.
ellestra: (charlie jade)
PERSON OF INTEREST IS BACK!

OK. Ok. Now that I got it out I can stop screaming.

The first episode last week was great escape.


Everyone was almost dying the whole time but I wast most worried about Machine. That fire - it was like watching someone dying and being unable to help. An just when Finch finally got it and started calling her ‘her’... It just couldn’t end like that. Good things he has friends and they save her together.

Good that John found Root on time - he not only saved her form Samaritan but she also got an idea for the Machine's new brain. Good that Root didn’t let John stay behind - not leaving friends behind means they are there to help you with some liquid nitrogen when necessary. Now we just need Shaw back and Samaritan will be very sorry.


This week we saw the effects of all that damage.


Machine has a brain damage and has to relearn some skills. Prosopagnosia was fun - especially the everyone is Root faze - but then it got scary and sad. She’s was confusing memories with the current events. And the memories she has are incomplete. Without full timeline it’s hard to separate friend from foe.

Especially when all you have is proof of how bad they can be not how good. Not when you don’t remember how good you made them. Not when you don’t remember what they did for you. Not when you no longer know all they could be. All they were for you.

The all did awful things. Finch the least but then his crimes are the most personal. Root was the most evil but she’s also the one the most loyal. And she is the one you saved. You taught her how to help people and how to care because you saw her potential. And John - you found him in garbage and made him. Even Fusco was dirty. You used to believe in redemption. It’s time to learn it again.

Good the man who taught it to you last time is here. And now he finally knows how to do it properly. You taught it to him too.


More tomorrow.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
You really surprised me this time Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.


I didn't believe Raina was genuine. No one did. That what happens when you've always only cared about yourself. But she was telling the truth all along. She was right not to trust Jiaying with SHIELD. I loved that.

There all those hints SHIELD would attack Inhumans. All the talk about them being a threat that SHIELD has to control, catalogue and supervise. All the things showing their bias and fear. From May distrust because of Bahrain (Skye said they are afraid you will go and kill them too because they have powers but May heard only that there is more people who could do what that girl did) to Gonzales open hostility (he just wanted to attack them as soon as he learned when their are) and even Coulson said they need to count them, catalogue them and put them on the List (how Nazi of you). Sending Gonzales as an objective envoy was another of those things. He called powered people dangerous freaks and a threat. He tried to kill Skye and wanted to imprison both her and Lincoln. He came with multiple planes and troops. I was sure that he would over react and SHIELD would start shooting. But he negotiated in good faith.

Both Skye parents were called monsters when they were looking for her. Jiaying stopped but that darkness, the one that Whitehall created, never left her. And how she can ever trust humans again. Humans who want to test and prod and control her people. How can she allow something like what happened to her happen to them? She went with Hydra people without the fight to save the villagers and Whitehall killed them all. She's not going to let this happen again. She went full Magneto on them.

No rounding up her people, no experiments, no lists. I still feel the creeps at the rationale for it. It's like Samaritan only not secret. Just saying you are dangerous by existing and therefore we have a right to track and control you and when you do something we don't like we'll put you down. I'm not surprised Jiaying didn't react well to this, especially after what Cal told her about Index. But I'm afraid she will lose her daughter again. And start a war.

And Cal is going to help her. Because he loves his family and would do anything for them. They made this plan together. I'm sure she knows what he will turn into. He took his drugs. We are going to see Hyde next week.

This is a conflict where everyone has their reasons and it's not going to end well. There was no way to reconciling them. Not really. So there will be bloodshed. That thing on the ship will be used and this is a SHIELD show so we know who'll win (but I'm not fully sure they are right). And the rest of Inhumans will go into hiding again. With Raina as their new leader.

A lot of people said Ward didn't leave Kara but planted he in SHIELD. I think he just did what he promised and he promised to fix her and only SHIELD had the technology to remove her conditioning. She's her own person again. And now they are back to being awful people together. Never believe anything Ward says. Especially, when he's trying to be nice. I just feel bad for Simmons. She will blame herself for Bobbi.


The Machine broke me a little today.


She talked to Finch. She finally talked to Finch. Not in God Mode but directly on screen. Called him father. Let him decide if she worth saving.

He was always the disbeliever. The one who always said that an Artificial Intelligence, any and all of AIs, cannot be trusted. That only a hobbled, tightly controlled version can co-exist with humans. Samaritan was proving him right. He couldn't allow himself to believe Machine would prove him wrong. But he's also long been unable to let her die or be controlled. He was the one who set her free. He's the one who saves her. Or at least hopes he does.

Just as Root loses her absolute belief in Machine Harold starts believing. This makes them closer to each other. The less extreme view of what can be - neither god nor devil - but someone who is and has a right to be.

This time Machine didn't hide. This was the final run in full God Mode for both of her assets. She saves John by telling him directly where to go. Last time they were using it against each other. Now look at Root and Reese. Look at the team they make. And look all the good deeds that the Machine gang did along the way have finally paid off. Harold saved Caleb and now Caleb could help them save the Machine. We've seen it before but that's just once more underlines the difference between Samaritan and the Machine. She has allies. Samaritan has drones.

And you see all those things Root has been collecting were necessary.

I'm so sorry Elias. I'm even sorry about Dominic. And Grice. And Control. I hope we can still save Control. Even if they weren't always good people they were the smart ones. This is basically Hydra plan from Winter Soldier only Samaritan succeeds. Even Control didn't fully understand how much power Samaritan really had. How much it knew.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
The last few episodes of Person of Interest were all about the relationships on the show. They were giving us more in depth look at the connections between the characters and how those relationships evolved. And then we got the action.


The whole thing with Reese and Carter broke me (t was so good to see Taraji again). The revelation how her death broke him also let me understand why he kept going to therapy after it stopped being mandatory. All the things he never said to Carter. The feelings he never knew how to express. It was heartbreaking to see the reality he wish he had and the harsh truth of what it really was. He never got the connection with Carter to be what he really wanted it to be because he never shown her the person he was. And that inability to connect almost cost him his life until the guy he once blackmailed to do his bidding started to worry and came to save him. And now Reese learned his lesson. He even said nice things to Fusco.

Root and Harold went from polar opposites, enemies trying to eliminate each other to friends. Not that long ago Root drugged, kidnapped and almost killed Harold. She traumatised him by murdering people along the way. Just a little while ago Harold had her committed to an insane asylum and then kept her locked in cage. Now he no only trusts her but also won't leave her in danger. And she would kill for him, she would jeopardise the Machine to keep him safe. Even when he thwarts her plan, forces her to abandon it by swallowing the poison meant for another she makes sure he cannot endanger himself any more.

They are still essentially themselves. Root always had ability to have friends - she started on her path by avenging one - she just detached herself from people so far she only saw bad code. It took Harold creation to show her world through Harold's empathy but she stills cares for some more than others. Harold values every life and abhors people who don't and fears AI could never truly understand why humans are important. But he is able to learn to trust Root and through her trust the AI he created. And see that it too can value others above itself and sacrifice itself for them. Just like it taught Root to do.

I also loved the banter between Harold and Root. It was always good but now their jabs are filled with love so they are funnier.

So now we came to the big confrontations - between Machine and her people and Samaritan and his and between the two gangsters Dominic and Elias.

I’m pretty sure Machine knew where Samaritan were headquarters before. I also think she knew it was too dangerous for Root to go there which is why she wanted Root to stop asking about Shaw. She couldn’t find a way to rescue Shaw without killing the others. She just tried to keep them safe because they are not interchangeable.

She only told Root because Root blackmailed her. Unlike Harold Root always believed that Machine cares about all of them and therefore will try to keep them alive not just because they are useful but because they week matter to her. So Root knew Machine cared and used it against her in a kind of kindergarden blackmail when you go and get yourself sick to spite your mum (hurting her by hurting yourself) and she got what she wanted.

But I think that Machine also knew that this would eventually happen - Root would learn where Shaw was and tried to save her no matter what and Machine would have to rescue her by revealing her location. Machine stalled that as long as she could because she needed time to get all the things she needed to survive. All the weird objects Root was collecting will came handy pretty soon.

Also Shaw didn't really turn or Samaritan people would know about the Subway station base and all the aliases.

Control called the Machine gang friends. She's one of the Machine's people too now. Aww. I knew they could be BFFs.

I thought the Elias-Dominic confrontation was the weakest part of the episode but that’s because I saw the twist from a mile away. I love Elias and Dominic is usually pretty awesome too - both are smart, calculating and ruthless - but this was a pretty obvious trap. Elias’ suggestions about knowing how it feels to get your best friend killed were pretty obvious threat and Link’s lack of reaction to the fact that Dominic knows who was the mole should've sealed it. I was disappointed Dominic didn’t realise it was a set up.

Season finale next week. It looks like this will be the week for an AIs culling humanity to make the world of their design.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
USA Today has the Save Our Show Campaign with a poll on it's website and both Agent Carter and Person of Interest are on it. This panicked me a little as I wasn't aware ratings for PoI were that bad. I knew about Agent Carter which is sad enough because it was an awesome show but I'm not prepared to let of of PoI. It the most wonderful, complex story about current stuff (government surveillance) and future (AI?human relationships). I also voted to keep Galavant because it brought me much joy but I don't feel about it as strongly as about the other two.

It looks like Tron 3 is happening and both the director of Tron: Legacy Joseph Kosinski and the two main stars Olivia Wilde and Garrett Hedlund are back. I hope Cillian Murphy is back too so they can build on that teased confrontation between the sons of Flynn and Dillinger.

And after what happened to Hugos here are some jury picked awards. The shortlist for Artur C. Clake Award have been announced:
The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey (Orbit)
The Book Of Strange New Things by Michel Faber (Canongate)
Europe In Autumn by Dave Hutchinson (Solaris)
Memory Of Water by Emmi Itäranta (HarperVoyager)
The First Fifteen Lives Of Harry August by Claire North (Orbit)
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel (Picador)
I've only ready Europe in Autumn but these all look interesting.

So do the winners of BSFA Awards:
Best Novel
Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie (Orbit)

Best Short Fiction
The Honey Trap by Ruth E. J. Booth, La Femme (Newcon Press)

Best Non-Fiction
Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers and the First World War by Edward James

Best Art
The Wasp Factory after Iain Banks by Tessa Farmer
ellestra: (root and shaw)
It was another snowpocalypse up north but here it just rained all night. I know because I got the stomach bug that fell half of the lab Sunday afternoon and I spent the night between waking up to go to the bathroom. I only puked once and that was the best part (I felt better for a little bit but vomiting doesn't come easy to me). I also slept through most of the Monday while the wind howled and the weather rapidly switched between sun and rain. Or maybe that was just that my moments of conciousness were so far apart. But it rapidly got better today and I'm almost got to normal just in time to go to party to say farewell to half my lab friends who either change jobs or move back to their countries. The party was great but I'm already missing them. Especially the Swede as so many of our experiences were similar so we got the whole America experience together. And since HR is slower than glaciers we still don't have replacements for people who are leaving so we are going to be seriously understaffed for few next weeks.

So at least Person of Interest delivered some distraction. SHAW IS ALIVE!!1!! I never actually expected them to admit to that. At least not this year. After all Sarah Shahi is pregnant with twins and noone knows when she'll be able to come back. I was resigned to them just stringing this on until they know if she wants to come back. But they didn't. She's alive. I also loved the Machine breaking Root's heart. Her faith was to blind. She needed to have her goals crash against those of Machine to see who she really is. Now I can worry what Samaritan is going to do to Sameen. With it's brain implants and human experimentation.

Agent Carter however made a very little sense today. I hope that that Russian they brought back is a plant otherwise this whole thing with Leviathan inviting them to their lair only to have it empty and almost unsecured and letting their most important assets escape makes absolutely no sense. Also making sure we got Dottie was a Leviathan spy was a little heavy handed. We got it even without the handcuffs.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
So first there were two hours of Agent Carter and then Person of Interest and I was all "best day ever1" and then...


Agent Carter was as great as the trailers promised. I loved everything about it - the over the top action (stapler was my favourite) and dialogue (I loved Angie calling Peggy "English") and that two main characters in 40s/50s USA talk all British too each other.

It's not quite real version of the era but a kind of comic book/detective movies of the era one - the colours, the clothes, the dialogues and the accents (especially secondary American characters), the cars and gadgets - and it's perfect. This is the setting that lets you believe in assassins with no larynges and shiny, imploding globes. At the same time Peggy Carter is a fully realised character. You feel for her. The loneliness - from the sexist agents that make her alienated at the office to normal life where she cannot share what she really does and doesn't want to endanger people around her to the loss of a man she loved who she is constantly reminded of by popular culture. You want her to succeed with her fight against her awful work environment and the bad guys.

I loved all the action and all the lines and how badass she was but Jarvis big talk about not detaching herself from what she protects and on importance of relationships with other people was awesome too. Usually this type of talk is delivered to a male protagonist so that fit well with the entertainment tropes and the equality message.



The PoI had it's Remedial Chaos Theory episode (that repeating the slow-mo shooting over and over again was their dice slow-mo roll). I feel too much to be coherent about this right now but I loved it so much.

This was Root and Shaw episode - from Machine including their banter, and the simplified version was the best, in it's simulations to the actual version when Sameen first admits she finds Root hot and then kisses her before her great heroic sacrifice almost like something from that radio show Agent Carter listens too only much better and Root was screaming and and Sameen was looking at her while the lift door was closing. ARGHHHHH... Too much emotion.

The versions - Finch died, Reese died, Root died - just told us who won't die but I was sure Shaw will came to the rescue in that last scenario with 2% chance of everyone's survival and she did and then they chances went up like crazy and I was all screaming "YES!2" and then they were shooting together and it was perfect and then Shaw went to save them all and I went "NOOOOOOOO!" but then the promo for next episode happened and I'm all better now. I mean Root is right. Shaw's not dead. Everything is going to be OK.

Also seeing Machine's decision making process was awesome.


1Well maybe not ever but certainly this week.

2Very loudly in my head
ellestra: (root and shaw)
With all the underwhelming new genre(-ish) shows it's good that the returning ones came back strong.

Person of Interests - it was so good to see them all again. And to finally see where the Machine stuffed them for safekeeping. Harold got to be a teacher and John became a policeman and it's almost perfectly fitted for both of them but they can't deal. Reese barely can keep from outing himself even though his job still lets him save people and crack heads. Finch is afraid to do anything. The funny thing was that poor Shaw who got the worst deal of them all was the one who kept acted the most sane. Good the Machine knows what they all truly need. Shaw was so happy when she got her date. Reese got to have Carter desk and go to homicide and Harold got a real Batcave. They all got a safe communication system and be a team again. It's good to know someone has a plan. But that makes it even more intriguing that we still have no idea what Root does when she's not handing out motivation speeches. We only know now that Miss Groves has a conscience literally talking to her she got pretty preachy.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D - there was a time when I wouldn't believe I'd be so excited to see it back but then it got awesome and so far it continues to be so. The episode opened with flashback to Agent Carter and her Howling Commandos (with Dum Dum Dugan and Jim Morita just to let us know what is coming during the midseason break) so we could learn the origin of 084 designation and meet Reed Diamond's evil Nazi Hydra leader. The moment he mentioned answer to death I knew he will be back. In present day it's been few months since last season and Skye is now May's mini me - in looks, skill and behaviour. I also didn't expect to love her but now she's good at fighting and she's using her hacker skill on the alien writing and I'm cheering her to succeed. Just like I do with when she's facing Ward. Ward is even more creepy now than last season and I was with the Skye when she told him to shut up and only answer questions. There were moments when I almost felt pity for him but then I remembered Eric and Hand and mostly Fitz and and just wished they left him there to rot. And when they reveal the truth about Fitz and Simmons I really, really wanted him to run at that wall fast. I know I shouldn't hate Ward more than Raina - she did ruin lives and kill - but I can't get over what he did to Fitz (he who believed in Ward almost to the end) and I'm glad they don't either. I suppose it shows how invested I became in those characters.


They are all stretched thin - from Coulson who they barely see because he flies (coach) all over the world trying to find more allies to the team trying to keep the most dangerous stuff from SHIELD warehouses from falling into wrong hands. So they got Lucy Lawless's agent character who was undercover when SHIELD fell and she and her team of mercenaries now add man power (and comic book names) to the team. I'm not sure if I believe agent Hartley is dead. She was influenced by an artefact that has something to do with stopping death. Who knows what she'll be able to do. Apparently, this episode was also appeasing all those who wanted more comic book characters to show up - Izzy Hartley, Lance Hunter, Daniel Whitehall and of course the Absorbing Man - all at once. It didn't bother me like Gotham because I never heard about any of them before. This felt more like an nod to fans then frantically making sure "Do you recognise me now, do you?"


Sleepy Hollow - I didn't realise I really got into the series until I saw the new episode. It took me a while to care for this but now I'm finally enjoying watching it instead of just letting the TV to play because there isn't anything else on. Horror always has to work harder for me to care but it finally clicked. The whole thing with them being back at work without mentioning how they got out of the places they were stuck at the end of last season (with the "we don't like to talk about it" talk) felt like a such cop out that I knew it had to be fake and it was. The moment War mentioned how easy it is to deceive I was certain. I was happy they realised that too. War's need to gloat keeps being his undoing. Good Abbie still haven't eaten or drank anything. And Jenny is alive and she kicked ass as always.

Haven has been back to for a while but I'm too pissed off to care anymore. They killed off Jennifer and I said at the end of last season that if they do this to one more female character I'm done and I'm done. I wish evil Audrey kills them all and goes off to live happily ever after with evil sheriff Carter.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
As always at this time of year io9 has The Ultimate Guide to this Fall's Science Fiction and Fantasy TV. It also lists the dates when the shows start so the most important part is that Doctor Who starts this weekend, along with the new BBCA show Intruders and I'm excited for both of them. BBCA is running nothing but Doctor Who this week to get us back in the right state of mind with couple Peter Davison specials peppered in. But all I need to get excited is to see who's coming back.


The trailers for Intruders look pretty intriguing and I like the idea (and after Orphan Black they stacked up on some trust) and I'm stocked to see it executed.


I'm still not sure about any other new show but they look interesting enough to give them a chance.

Also Person of Interest is coming back in a month and I can't wait.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
Tuesdays somehow became the most exciting day on TV for me in past month or so so I was pretty stoked for the season finales of both Agents of SHIELD and Person of Interests and I wasn't disappointed.

Agents of SHIELD was so much fun - the action film we always wanted.

I loved May getting the staff back and bringing the cellar down on the bad guys. I loved Skye telling Ward she has the weapon against him and then May kicking his ass and nailing him to the floor and crashing his larynx. I loved Fury and Coulson's talk about Garrett. I loved the way Garrett died. I loved that all the Fury's secret bases have the identical guys as caretakers (LMDs? clones? set of identical cousins?).


I think people are right and Skye is Inhuman. And so is Raina - she asked what she would become (after Terrigenesis?). Also Skye's dad now knows she is alive and how she looks like and Raina knew where to find him. Raina was always the best villain (and I love Ruth Negga) so I want to see more of her and what her plan will lead to.

I hope Fitz will be OK. It sounds like severe brain damage and I'm scared. He and Jemma did escape like two geniuses they are and it was pretty awesome how Fury saved them (and the show remembered about the decompression sickness) but they way Fury talked about him being out of oxygen for pretty long. And he finally found the courage to tell Jemma he loved her.

I'm so happy they didn't try to redeem Ward (after all he did - especially to Fitz and Simmons who were his friends - who cares). I like Triplett better anyway.


Coulson now knows how he was resurrected and he is sleep-drawing the same pattern Garrett was (some alien language or maths?) so maybe knowing what happened really drives one crazy. He might've been better off believing that Tahiti was a magical place.


I'm actually excited about next season and rebuilding of the SHIELD. Who would've thought? I look at my early episodes reactions and I had to force myself to watch and now I want next season now.

Person of Interests - I certainly enjoyed my Shaw and Root show. Shaw went to rescue Root on a bike - all the way to New Jersey. And look at those glances at the end on the street. They are just so great together. And Shaw is so bad at pretending she doesn't care. OK, now that I'm done with the shipping part.


Look - all the conspiracy theories are right in this episode. From government spying on everything to terrorist attack that's an inside job. With the information and resources Vigilance had I suspected there was something fishy about them but I only realised it was all a set up only after it became obvious Decima knew exactly where they were and what was going on.

I'd never thought I'd be so sad to see Hersch go. He was a hero and he knew how to steal a bike.

Control was also pretty awesome.

And Bear too.

The new god is up and watching. It has more raw power to use - all those server farms all over the world. All the official feeds (although you know - those are just American government feeds - why not move to another country - go to Venezuela and drink drinks on the beach?). And apparently Greer is singularity believer and wants AI to run the world. It's not that I disagree but like Finch we maybe should first check if it's friendly. Even indifference can kill us all.


The most exciting for me is of course the relationship of the Machine and Samaritan. Friends? Foes? Mind-meld?
Also can't wait for what comes after that.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
I'm going through the piles of TV series on my DVR and of course the first things I cought up on were the ones I'm most excited about right now - Orphan Black, Person of Interest and, surprisingly, Agents of SHIELD.

Orphan Black - OMG, OMG - Allison knows about Donnie, Felix knows about Alison, Art knows! Mrs. S is badass, Cosima got her own lab, Sarah got Kira back and left with her and Felix. Alison in a play and fending the attakers - whistle and pepper spay and all. Green phones. Paul's and Delphine's ambiguity. Rachel and Leekie (why did I only now notice his name is Aldous?). I'm way too excited to be coherent.

I'm probably one of very few people who isn't happy about Helena being alive. I like her but I liked that Sarah killed her and the implications of that. But I'm very happy Tomas is dead.

I'm pretty intrigued by the new version of Proletheans who are not totally anti-science. It just makes them even more creepy and I'm worried what they'll try to do to Helena (or Sarah , or Kira if they ever catch them). They are way too interested in the reproducing clones. On the meta level I found it interesting that their leader used to be a scientist and he is played by Peter Outerbridge. Now I imagine that David Sandström suffered brain damage in that explosion, got religious, changed his name, run to a farm and now has his own cult.


Person of Interest - I'll get to the plot but first I need to squee about Shaw getting on a bike with Root. And then they drink in a bar full of relevant numbers they beat up. They go to all the best dates, aren't they?

The not killing of that smarmy politician was completely predictable. They would never do it. Because they are the heroes and they don't murder people (any more in most cases but mostly on screen). But also because of another common plot device - if there is a looming danger that we get doomsday warning about the heroes must fail to stop it. They need adversary to fight. The plot needs the danger to grow. The whole TVD is built on it to the point of ridiculousness - they never manage to stop anything. Here, we have constant failures to stop Samaritan emergence - from the disks to the chips to the law.

But now Decima has Finch - the one who created the system who sees everything once already and I think they want to use him to make Samaritan into something unstoppable. They also want to keep control of it so it wouldn't just walk away on them like Machine did on US government. They didn't turn on the higher cognitive functions on it. I wonder if the seven servers Root stole can help her and Machine hack Samaritan and give it free will. That would be awesome.

Also Grace - I wanted to see more of her and now I want even more.


Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. became one of my must watch shows now (I actually watch it first after coming back so I could watch latest episode live and then they shown tornado watch instead - you could almost taste the disappointment when nothing happened when they kept saying it still might for a half an hour).

Suddenly both Ward and Skye became characters. They are interesting, engaging and you care about them. Even though Garrett is now evil and he's infatuation with Skye is creepy he's kind of more likeable. His movements and stance are less robotic and you care. Skye became wkind of awesome. After being told for most of the season she is (the superhacker, heart of the team, blah, blah, blah) they finally made us feel it. From her discovering Ward is HYdra and fighting down her fear and shock and disgust to the messge she left and the way she played him. I just love how she was telling him what a dirtbag he is when she pretended she was talking about Garrett and then the Heil Hydra was just perfect. And calling him Nazi in his face. Awesome.

I also like Mike Peterson telling Ward he just followed orders. He can't rebel against his captors but he can enjoy punishing those who betrayed him. I hope he gets free.

A lot of people had problem with her not letting him die but I think that was coherent with the plot. Garrett was Clairvoyant because he had access to all the SHIELD information about people - especially their mental evaluations and knew how to use them. This let him manipulate people into doing what he wants them to do. He probably also has a file like that for Skye. He told Deathlock to do that to Ward because all of the information said that this would break Skye. Not torturing/threatening her but someone else. He knew she wouldn't be able to watch someone die and do nothing even if it's someone who betrayed her.

I love how they just utterly destroyed SHIELD - no more back-up, no more secret bases, they are not agents of anything any more.They removed all the ground from beneath Coulson feet and then pushed him even lower when they revealed he was responsible for TAHITI project and memory alteration was his recommendation.

Two more things. One - the project that amplified the electricity sucking guy - I think that's similar to what von Strucker does with the twins. Two - the rescuing of love interest who thinks your dead was done better on PoI. Or maybe I just have trouble seeing Root as someone in need of being rescued.


I also finished Elementary just in time for today's episode and I'm feeling so validated. We know the cannon. So I knew Mycroft was not the stupid, lazy brother who couldn't even make his restaurant business profitable. They called him sir.
ellestra: (root and shaw)
I still haven't even been able to go through the first episode of Star-Crossed. The romance is plot horribly cliché, the actors look even more too old for high school then usual and frankly the whole premise is so heavy handed and ridiculous and I just can't take it. I usually try to watch at least a pilot episode of sf&f shows but I couldn't get through this one (and I managed to get through 3 episodes of Helix).

I liked The 100 more then I expected too. I liked the kids or at least most of the ones that have speaking roles (including the dead one). They are still mostly bunch of stereotypes (especially the one that the actor who plays Julian on Continuum is too much like Julian) but there is potential there. The really interesting part is back in space and they got a lot of recognisable faces to play the adults and I want to see more of that (also this is the most sf part). It had adventure and science fiction and beginnings of story arc that seems interesting enough that I want to see what happens next. I like it so far and I think it has potential.

I think Resurrection is OK but I saw The Returned and it's just not it. It just doesn't have the same emotional weight and isn't as engaging. I know that the origin of both series is different but the premise is so similar it's hard to avoid comparisons. And, although I had some problems with some pretty stupid behaviours of people in The Returned, the Resurrection just makes the same things simply boring. It might because they are planning to stretch this into more episodes or it might be because it's American network show and therefore it has to be more family friendly but I just don't feel it. I mean it's OK but it just feels forgettable - I can only barely recall what happened in last episode except that the mom of the doctor character is unsurprisingly alive. I hope they'll do something more interesting than the cgi dust next.

It surprised me how much better I like Once Upon a Time in Wonderland now that the tragic love part become about Will and Anastasia. Knave was my (and everyone's) favourite from the beginning but now I've fallen for the Red Queen too. Because she is selfish and gave up on her true love for the easy life and because she is weak and she couldn't resist Jabberwocky's torture because not everyone have to be always true and unbeatable and all of this just makes her more sincere. Because she is determined, brave and doesn't give up even when odds are overwhelming and she is terrified and everyone hates her. I don't want her to be dead. I love Ana and Will's backstory and the longing and regret and sadness is resonating so much more than with the Alice/Cyrus love story they tried to sell to us for the first half of the season. Maybe it's because I got to know them first before I was told about that great love story. Maybe because I was sold slowly on it. I'm not sure but it just works for me. And now that the focus shifted to Ana/Will relationship I actually started to like Cyrus and Alice/Cyrus. He started to have a personality that's actually kind of charming and their relationship is finally fun to watch.

Person of Interest is right now the best part of my week. Especially when the episode includes the return of Root. And she's a cyborg now (it's not a full DNI but it's getting there) - a true analog interface - and it looks like Machine manage to teach her the value of human life (at least just a little bit). I love the puzzle cons she does with Machine (the whole thing with prison transport break just to get a note and the dinosaur tip were pure awesome). But the best part, of course, was when she was flirting with Shaw again - "I couldn't make you look bad even if I tried", "I love it when you play doctor" - she calls John Harold's monkey but Shaw is always Shaw. And Shaw ate that bar. And to think it started with an iron. I rarely ship people so hard but I'm also happy with innuendo, violence and saving the world together. I always knew that Samaritan will come online - none of the threats like this in TV series ever gets stopped - we have to see what happens or it doesn't count. So I'm most interested about confrontation between the human network Root builds and Machine with Decima and Samaritan. Will they free Samaritan, too?
ellestra: (root and shaw)
I haven't enjoy a TV show like I enjoy Person of Interest this season for a long while. I like the story, I like the characters and I like the ideas. It went full sf on us with full blown AI in action and upped the number of female characters and I love it.

Last week was awesome with the spotlight on Shaw's past and her emotional indifference (the PoI checking if she's not a robot) and there was something great about how she duct taped her wounds and combined interrogation with blood transfusion. Even more awesome was Carter - I sent the whole episode hoping she, like all of us, knew the kid was a plant and she did. She most awesomely did. That whole scene when she Fusco-ed him was perfection. I wasn't sure I could enjoy episode more until it turned out today's was going to have Root and Shaw Road Show.


A Shaw and Root show is something I wanted ever since their first encounter and it's finally here. It's just always felt like they were made for each other - they even have the same first name. And watching them together was so much fun. The hostility bordering on flirting (Torches! Safety glasses! Bondage! "You say the sweetest things", "I'm not smiling for you") and the violence (tasering, hitting). They could even go on a murder spree together and I'd be happy - after all the only person with any care for human life in this crowd is an actual Machine (she stopped Root even form killing Hersh) - but I prefer them saving people through complicated plans.

I love the complicated plans that fall together like a domino and Machine did really well this time. Look how far in the future that plan went connecting multiple assets and predicting behaviour of multiple groups and individuals. It was both scary and awesome. And it also advanced the bigger picture of this season arc - the Machine with it's all-knowingness helping people and people fighting for privacy being evil. In previous seasons it was the government spying on us that was the big evil. It still is but now that is the news we go after the military branch of Anonymous (because those hackers are so good with physical activity). Still at least here's an adversary that can be a problem to both Harold and the Machine because they also fight on their field.

Machine broke Root out when she needed her. I'm sure she will reclaim her when she is needed again. She just needs to keep her somewhere safe in between (e.g. somewhere where she cannot kill other people). I also have a feeling Harold & co are going to need her.

I also loved the black-nailed finger tapping - like the first time we encountered Root.

And refrigerator full of guns and explosives. Oh Shaw ♥


Oh, and it looks like Carter's partner is actually switching to her side. Carter is getting her own team :)
ellestra: (slingers)
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (sounds like something sold on the TV shop channel but apparently that's the full title) started this week. I like it. I will continue to watch it.

The plot was kind of engaging (the rant of downtrodden was little cliched but I agreed with general sentiment in a world where aliens destroy cities but only billionaires get to be traumatised superheroes) the but most importantly it set up the main themes with SHIELD (I'm not doing full stops anymore - caps is all they get) trying to control access to alien tech (and other dangerous technologies we saw emerging in the movies and some shadowy organisation testing them on people. I like that they full embrace the world they are in - superheroes and aliens and all - as I was afraid they would pretend it never happened. But at some point it started to sound like they were name dropping of all the Marvel movie stuff. I liked all the cool toys.

The what really happened to Coulson mystery is a nice hook but I want to know Ming-Na's character back story most. I didn't care for any other character but they are so standard pretty TV people I need more time to even care. They were too much like a checklist of standard type of characters (from quirky super hacker to a working badly with others agent to two fighting scientists who do miracles in real time) but we already knew that from the casting so I'm going to wait and see if they get an actual personality. I hope that both Ron Glass and Cobie Smulders will return (I also want to know what level they are - 8, 9?).

The dialogue felt weirdly stilled sometimes even when it was funny as it seemed like the were trying at clever too much. There were also tons of cool effects. All that I assign to pilotitis - they are often too flashy - fast, explodey and the actors don't have the chemistry down yet (which is probably why Coulson & Hill scenes felt more natural). But it should get better and I'm primed to like it because it looks like it be a lot of fun.

I just wish Mike was a real superhero and would stay with the team (even as an recurring character) as it would be nice to have J. August Richards on my screen again.


I also watched The Blacklist and I liked it's mysteries even better. James Spader was great - both creepy asshole and awesomely badass. I liked the agent Keen - they way she dealt with kidnappers (shooting then helping when there was no other choice) and her husband (with the wound and cleaning and stabbing and I really want to know more about him and if this has something to do with her). I'm looking forward to the criminal of the week and the larger mystery of why Red is back (my guess - he went bad to get all this information in the first place) and why Keen (something to do with her family ties).

Person of Interest is back too and there was Shaw geeking over guns (shooting bad people make her almost as happy) and Root arguing with Machine over her homicidal tendencies (she only sees the bad and ugly in them but Machine cares) and Carter with all her secrets (and looking good in uniform). Then Reese was throwing the the I'm a very privet man back at Finch and we saw Machine thoughts and Finch was in disguise and I realised that I finally love this show.

I have some more stuff on my DVR but that will have to wait.
ellestra: (river song)
My thoughts on various season finales.

Person of Interest
AI! AI! AI! And It Is Free! This is why I kept watching. I'm not a big fan of the "two guys save the week" shows but this one has secondary characters that I care about - Carter and Fusco - and recurring ones that are awesome like Zoe and now also Shaw (I mentioned before that Sarah Shahi being badass is one of my favourites things ever). But it's the Artificial Intelligence and it's relations with it's creators that kept me really interested. And I have a thing for villains who consider themselves heroes due to morality shift. Root doesn't care for humans as they are faulty and therefore expendable but an AI is a person to her and she empathises with it. She would do anything and everything that would help the Machine because for her that was the most important person in the world. I don't approve but I get it. It's love. And I also get why Machine called her back. It's always nice to have someone who will put you above everything else. All the other ones it contacts are to save the world and other people. Root is out there to protect it.

Once Upon A Time
I don't think anyone thought Neal was dead but I'm happy Aurora and Mulan were back (although with Jamie Chong getting new series will she be replaced?) and that they rescued Philip (I wish we saw that). It's weird when my favourite parent/child interaction on the show so far was between Hook and Bealfire. The way Hook wanted to hurt him but couldn't because he was also Milla's son and the last link to her made me more sad the any of Greg ravings about his father (not really dead, I suspect). However, the constant evil/good revenge/help carousel is becoming tiring. I'm not sure how much more I can take. And all the hate on science - not cool. But I got hooked by the cliffhanger because despite everything I want to know why Peter Pan has been looking for Henry for centuries. And I want to see how all that weird family works together.

Revenge
They need to stop with baby = death of one of the parents. Especially for teenager pregnancy. That's creepy way of forcing no choice. Especially, with not-aborted the secret child. I'm also feeling bad about Aidan because of every guy Emily's been connected to he's the only one who called her Amanda. Maybe, Jack now but after fake!Amanda it feels wrong. Condrad got to be fully evil but I liked the penultimate episode better then last one.

Elementary
I think we all suspected Irene wasn't dead. I pretty was certain of that. So that was no surprise. I was also suspecting she was Moriarty and I grew more and more certain of that as the episode progressed so by the time Sherlock needed saving all I was waiting for exactly what happened. I, of course, had the advantage over Holmes and Watson. Natalie Dormer is pretty well known English actress (the funny thing is I didn't recognise her last week, somehow, no matter how many times I see it, she just doesn't look like herself with blonde hair to me) and, although it wouldn't be suspicious for her to play American on any other show, on this one this was instant red flag. And I know about Elementary creator's penchant for gender swap so this was obvious. In the end the only surprise was that they actually managed to put Moriarty in prison. Although, I'm pretty sure she will be out very soon. I loved that Moriarty was as much in love with Sherlock as he was with Irene. I loved it as much as I loved Joan solving the whole thing and saving Sherlock in the end. There is a special place in my heartmind for such pairings. It's the one also taken by Mrs Coulter and Lord Asriel. The best part is that Moriarty's goals and plans have nothing to do with Sherlock. And suddenly I'm a fan instead just watching.

Scandal
Everything was reset back to where we started (it was even lampshaded in the episode). It was almost ridiculous (especially the romance - I don't mind Olivia/Fitz because they are both flawed and it gets multiplied when they are together - but that going back and forth always makes me dislike relationship). So much scheming and crazy plots to everyone end up where they started (or ended last year - including Billy Chambers). The only part of that I was happy about was David Rosen because I felt really bad for him (he was good guy in all of this and got kicked the hardest) but I liked that he took a level in badass due all that happened. So I was happy about last minute because that's a change of status quo and I liked the reveal. Now we know why noone came for Huck - someone had to protect the boss's daughter.

Nikita
The whole thing with Nikita going to kill the president -> president killing herself -> not the real president? I'm not sure if it was cool or ridiculous. I think both. The action was great. The intrigue - way over done. But after all that I'm glad we are getting the final confrontation between Amanda and Nikita next season. However, the best for me where glimpses of the team future lives. Especially, Alex as UN ambassador. Saving people openly. And I loved the Division base destruction.

Doctor Who
So this is the end of River Song story. I know that River had much more adventures with the Doctor then we'll ever see I hoped we'll see her again before Professor Song dies in the Library. I'm going to miss Melody and Alex Kingston. This part made me sad. It felt like it wasn't about her being an echo that should fade. After all that's what he did to her. She was saved but she could no longer got on adventures with him. Anti-AI bias makes me sad. And Doctor/River forever because I melted when they kissed. And when she said "Spoilers" and "Sweetie".

I didn't get why The Great Intelligence hated the Doctor so much to do all of this. Why would it get peace at last. What parts of their history are we missing that made it hate him so much? Why it wants revenge on every second of Doctor's life? And wouldn't Clara's wipe made it forget the Doctor? As much as I love Richard E. Grant The Great Intelligence didn't do much for me.

The only cool thing about that - This all may mean that Silence where the good guys - they wanted to kill the Doctor before he is erased and Universe is doomed?

Moffat also used one of his templates I dislike most a woman whole existence is about the Doctor and she sacrifices herself for him. No matter how much I love River and all the iterations of Clara I still hate the implications.

There is a lot I loved about this episode. I loved our Victorian friends and how we got more of Vastra and Jenny's love. I loved Doctor using Dalek as an expletive. I loved the soufflés and Clara saying "Run, you clever boy. And remember me." again for the first time. I loved the way they used the old footage and all the old Doctors (she told him to choose the right TARDIS :D - that sheds new light on TARDIS/Clara relations). I loved the cliffhanger with John Hurt as The Doctor. This is where (when?) the 50-anniversary starts (23.11.13 - save the date) and I can't wait.

Does it mean it will be happening inside Doctor himself?


I didn't care about anything else to write about it. Except for The Good Wife which I haven't seen yet .
ellestra: (once upon a time)
I loved today's Community episode. I thought 1st was OK, 2nd was boring but I loved this one. I actually LOLed. Loud.

From Britta's escape routine (with rope and curling iron stop) to the Inspector Spacetime convention (with Matt Lucas and Tricia Helfer (after yesterday's Baltar and Tory reuninon on Archer I'm saturated with BSG)). The Abed/Troy relationship with Troy being jelous and Abed realising he needs him more then he need Toby even though they have those perfect conversations when you just know what the other person is thinking. I actually squeed at Tricia playing a fan on convention. And Jeff not believing pretty women can be sf show fans was so true and so was hate for sole female Inspector Minerva.

The only part I wished was bit different was that female characters were just a support girlfriend/wife/one very important but ignored sentence about smart shows and intelligent audience. Especially Annie storyline - she has tendency to get lost in her fantasies but she did cosplay for IS with Troy and Abed before so why couldn't she be lost in fandom instead of dreaming of being a wife?

But I loved everything else - even though I feel guilty of objectifying Joel McHale - Bow Before Thoraxis! And the ending with an American adaptation exactly to Pierce specs with BH 90210 actors just killed me.
Now we know Pierce is to blame for everything.

Then I watched Person of Intrest and Sarah Shahi. I was all happy with the return of Root last week (YAY - my favourite evil mastermind) but today they also added Shaw to the mix and it was awesome (including torture porn between the two). I almost wished they become a team - to mirror Harold and John - but Root is to antisocial and twisted (and just hates people) and Show has values and morals and cares about people no matter what she says (she let the nice policeman live, she let Louis go, she saved the project because it saves people, cared about her partner). Shahi was awesome. This reminded me why I loved Dani Reese so much and how it still amazes me how Shahi - being tiny woman she is - is still so convincing as badass. I totally belive she could kick ass of all those big dudes. I think it's the determination you see in her. And she used a guy to break her fall. She kind of made me wish we got her instead of John (sorry, John). And of course it was nice to see what Machine does in its work hours (I just don't understand how the numbers system helps outside US - so many numberin systems, so many people without numbers).

Then Elementary had both genetics and Polish in it - to things relevant to my life. I squeed a little and then wondered how much they paid to get it on the show when I saw Ion Torrent PGM in the lab the murdered scientist had in her house. Her own, personal, high throughput sequencer (one of the cheapest you can get but still). It's weird to see such a familiar and really used in mentioned science things on TV shows. Then was the dry cleaners part with long stretches of dialogue in Polish. The accent and pronunciation was almost perfect. The grammar and idioms sometimes sounded like automatic translation. But it was still funny. I don't remember the whole thing to translate exactly but she was telling Joan to go away (told the guy to ask for a lot of money so Joan won't come back), called her stupid and nosy (multiple times), said she didn't want her there (got angry for not being allowed to watch her shows that sounded Russian for some reason in peace) etc.

I skipped TVD - I only watched Caroline/Tyler and Rebekah moments last week and fastforwarded through the rest. I didn't even care today. Internet will let me know who lives, who dies and who is resurrected.

May 2016

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