SCANDAL Recap: “The Key”

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In Scandal‘s “The Key,” Olivia is ready to get her expensive pants dirty, and find out what’s really going on with Jake, who has seemingly disappeared.  Yet at first, despite being Olivia Pope, no one will return her phone calls or take her demands seriously (this is all to their peril).  In her search for Jake and for the truth, she’s also inadvertently drawing together everyone she knows into a complex web that will hopefully save him.  Sooner would be better than later, though, since Fitz is on the warpath.  Hit the jump for why “respectfully, sir, she’s probably drunk and in a food coma from too much fried chicken.”

FOLLOWING FREAK SHOW Video Podcast: Episode 3 – “Edward Mordrake (Part 1)”

by     Posted Yesterday

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Welcome to episode 3 of Following Freak Show, a show that’s all about discussing the crazy things that go down on American Horror Story: Freak Show.  In “Edward Mordrake (Part 1),” we learn about the superstition of Edward Mordrake (Wes Bentley).  Legend has it, should freaks perform on Halloween, Mordrake will rise up and pick one member of the troupe to take with him.

You can catch new episodes of Following Freak Show right here on Collider each week the day after a new episode of American Horror Story airs.  And if you’d like to follow the panelists in between new releases, here’s everybody’s Twitter handles: @PNemiroff, @AlexisSaarela, @djSheSay and @ActuallySasha.  Hit the jump to check out this week’s Following Freak Show video podcast.

AMERICAN HORROR STORY: FREAK SHOW Recap: “Edward Mordrake (Part 1)”

by     Posted Yesterday

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This episode of American Horror Story: Freak Show could have been better.  “Edward Mordrake (Part 1)” is clearly being used as a build-up to next week’s “Edward Mordrake (Part 2).”  We’ve got characters doing things that are in stark contrast to what previous episodes have established, there are loads of great scenes but few have satisfying payoffs and, overall, the first part of the coveted Halloween episode just isn’t all that scary.  But does that mean I didn’t enjoy it?  Absolutely not.  The entertainment value of American Horror Story: Freak Show is through the roof.  At this point, no logic or structural issue stands a chance against the outlandish fun that’s to be had with these characters in this setting.  Hit the jump for more in my American Horror Story: Freak Show recap.

Marvel’s AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Recap: “A Hen in the Wolf House”

by     Posted 3 days ago

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Welcome back, true believers!  Our latest installment promises to introduce a long standing character from the comics into the Marvel cinematic universe in the form of Bobbi Morse, played by Adrianne Palicki.  Bobbi, aka Mockingbird, is the ex-wife of Avenger, Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner in the movies), and has found herself on quite a few incarnations of the team herself.  In our most recent installment of the series, the gang will find themselves at odds with Ms. Morse as she is revealed to be the current head of security for Hydra.  Whether or not this is a con or a new take on the character is yet to be seen, though it would be funny to see how many undercover S.H.I.E.L.D. agents there are in Hydra at this point with the recent episode focusing on Simmons.  (Maybe there are no actual Hydra agents left!)  Will the team be able to battle the forces of Hydra this go around?  Is Mockingbird friend or foe?  Has Agent Coulson been working on his dance routine from last week?  All these and more revealed in our latest Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. recap after the jump.

BOARDWALK EMPIRE Recap: “Friendless Child”

by     Posted 5 days ago

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In many ways, Boardwalk Empire‘s penultimate episode, “Friendless Child,” was a capsule of the most essential elements of Nucky’s full story over the course of the series.  The waning hours of Nucky’s gangland battle with Lucky and Meyer mirror the show’s twilight as well.  The gangsters are tired.  Many of them are dead.  There’s a new world order, and all Nucky wants now is to make amends as best he can.  The flashbacks in “Friendless Child” also tied together his relationship with Gillian, and how she may be his only hope for some kind of redemption.  Hit the jump for why “all I have — all I’ve ever had — is Atlantic City.”

THE AFFAIR Recap: “2″

by     Posted 5 days ago

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After a lot of critical fanfare for its pilot (and despite some awful trailers on Showtime), The Affair needed to prove that it had staying power.  Until this week, (and somewhat unusually), only that first episode had been available in advance for review, so the glowing remarks were all based on that powerhouse.  “2″ wasn’t quite as mesmerizing as “1,” (a.k.a. “Pilot,”) but it did fill out some more details of the world Noah and Alison are living in, and how each of them uniquely experiences it.  Hit the jump for “I was never fun. You got more fun, which is the problem.”

HOMELAND Recap: “Iron in the Fire”

by     Posted 5 days ago

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In “Iron in the Fire,” Homeland expanded on the conspiracy surrounding Sandy Bachman’s death, and brought it all back to Homeland‘s central theme of trust.  As Carrie builds her team in Islamabad, she also wrestles with the CIA operatives already in place there; though as she quickly discovers, she needs their help, too. (Although it isn’t, of course, that simple).  Homeland also snuffed out some of its own fire by revealing the identity of the confidential informant, but did so in a way that shows that arc is far from over.  Hit the jump, because “what I need is your help, not your goddamn foot on the break.”

SCANDAL Recap: “Like Father, Like Daughter”

by     Posted One week ago

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Important question for Scandal watchers: is there anyone who still wants Fitz and Olivia together, besides Fitz?  We know it’s all he has left, as he has failed “as a father, as a husband, and as a man” (in his words — but don’t forget “as a President,” too).  But is Fitz still defensible, or even likable, in any way?  When the two of them were alone together for the first time this season in the Oval Office, and “The Light” started to play, was anyone desperate for a rekindling?  Or instead, were we desperate to get to any other part of “Like Father, Like Daughter”?  Hit the jump if “we can do this later, I’m really wasted.”

FOLLOWING FREAK SHOW Video Podcast: Episode 2 – “Massacres and Matinees”

by     Posted 8 days ago

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Welcome to episode 2 of Following Freak Show, a show that’s all about discussing the crazy things that go down on American Horror Story: Freak Show.  In “Massacres and Matinees,” the local cops come down hard on Elsa’s “monsters” after the disappearance of Detective Bunch.  Meanwhile, Dandy is as bored as ever so his mother comes up with a deeply twisted plan to make her baby boy happy again.

You can catch new episodes of Following Freak Show right here on Collider each week the day after a new episode of American Horror Story airs.  And if you’d like to follow the panelists in between new releases, here’s everybody’s Twitter handles: @PNemiroff, @AlexisSaarela, @djSheSay and @ActuallySasha.  Hit the jump to check out this week’s Following Freak Show video podcast.

AMERICAN HORROR STORY: FREAK SHOW Recap: “Massacres and Matinees”

by     Posted 9 days ago

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The premiere of American Horror Story: Freak Show had the benefit of the shock and awe that comes with introducing viewers to a new vibrant location and fresh crop of curious characters, but now that the initial thrill is long gone, the question is, can Freak Show hold up?  Thanks to the highly intriguing character layers and fascinatingly bizarre scenarios introduced in the season’s second episode, “Massacres and Matinees,” the answer is a resounding yes.  Hit the jump for more on the wealth of mind-blowing oddities in my American Horror Story: Freak Show recap.

Marvel’s AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Recap: “Face My Enemy”

by     Posted 10 days ago

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Welcome back, true believers!  We join our heroes, after having been shown that Simmons is in fact deep undercover in the depths of Hydra, as Coulson and Agent May must go undercover themselves by cutting the dance floor.  This episode promises to uncover some of the secrets that “Coulson has been looking for”.  Will Coulson find the answers that he’s looking for?  Will Hydra put a stop to his search?  Will Civil War really take place in the Marvel cinematic universe?  Two of these questions will be answered as you hit the jump for our Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Recap.

BOARDWALK EMPIRE Recap: “Devil You Know”

by     Posted 12 days ago

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The past is catching up with everyone on Boardwalk Empire, under dire circumstances.  Of course, these outcomes shouldn’t come as a surprise — this is a show about gangsters.  And as Justified‘s Boyd Crowder once said, that kind of chosen way of life “only ends one way.”  In “Devil You Know,” Nucky had a choice: to lay down and let the sins of his past overtake him, or get up and fight.  Nucky being Nucky, he chose the latter.  Because otherwise, what was it all for?  Hit the jump, even though “it’s all a dream to begin with.  Ain’t nobody ever been free.”

THE AFFAIR Series Premiere Recap: “Pilot”

by     Posted 12 days ago

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Showtime is known for having great ideas for series.  Dexter, Weeds, Nurse Jackie, The Borgias; all of these started off as quirky, creative offerings that helped distinguish Showtime from its premium rivals.  But the network also can have a problem with holding on for too long.  It also can limit its shows to just one dynamic character, surrounded by a lot of boring, static ones (see Dexter and Weeds, on both accounts).  While Ray Donovan still struggles to become a great show (though remains a very watchable one), and Masters of Sex took a regrettable nosedive in its second season, Showtime’s creation of Penny Dreadful and its newest series The Affair (created by Hagai Levi and Sarah Treem) have introduced a new class of series that, if handled properly, could be ones that redefine the network’s programming, and galvanize it again as a place of daring and interesting storytelling.  Hit the jump if you think everyone has one book in them, but almost nobody has two.

HOMELAND Recap: “Shalwar Kameez”

by     Posted 12 days ago

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In “Shalwar Kameez,” Homeland made a decision that I predict will be divisive within the fandom.  There are always going to be messy personal relationships on Homeland — it’s part of what makes the show compelling — but the direction “Shalwar Kameez” started to take some of them is potentially worrisome, because it harkens back to one of the weakest aspects of the series from the past two years.  Hit the jump for why “once a scalp hunter, always a scalp hunter.”

THE KNICK Recap: “The Golden Lotus”

by     Posted 13 days ago

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In the last few episodes of its first season, The Knick has focused almost exclusively on Dr. Thackery’s cocaine addiction and withdrawal, no thanks to that pesky war in the Philippines. (Don’t they know the junkies are in need?)  “The Golden Lotus” became a game to see who could provide Thack his drugs in a city where no one seems to have any, while Thack’s addiction (and a burgeoning understanding of what addiction looks like and means) is also discussed and revealed in the light of day.  Hit the jump for “you’re the most resourceful, most wonderful, beautiful girl I have ever known” … though maybe that’s just the cocaine talking.

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