windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (tvd:  I'll save you)
The Vampire Diaries
Season Four of The Vampire Diaries is underway and I'm still loving it. Some of the cast pairings, in terms of who gets scenes with who--not necessarily romantically, are switching up which makes for a really interesting dynamic on such a big ensemble show. Is anyone else up-to-date and watching the show every week? My favorite weekly recaps are done by [livejournal.com profile] woodwitch, at her blog. I don't always agree with her, but she has a great sense of humor, is fiercely loyal to the show without being slavishly accepting of the missteps and plotfails, and she often says what I'm thinking about the episode developments. And, you know, she's really a fun writer to follow no matter what she's talking about.

Arrow
Because I have Hulu Plus and a teething-instead-of-sleeping baby, I started watching Arrow--a new series based on the Green Arrow. He was never on my comic book radar, so I have no preconceptions about the show, the character, or anything. I'm three episodes in and still on-the-fence about whether it will earn a regular place in my TV watching habits. The set-up is pretty simple--wealthy playboy is shipwrecked on an island for five years, presumed dead by everyone. The show starts when he is discovered and brought back to not-Gotham-City,where his family are Trumplike titans of business.

And there are some standard comic book tropes thrown in--the transformative life experience, the seemingly effortless construction of a top-secret high-tech super hero lair, expert tailoring of a leather/pleather fighting costume, the clueless love interest, and the gee-shucks alter-ego with a suspicious tendency to disappear from places just before things get interesting.

I'm just not sure if the cast, as a whole, is interesting enough for a series or if I can handle a 'new bad guy every week' format. What I love is that intercut with the present day are memories the main character has of his castaway days on the island. I, a sucker for all things survival and deserted island-y, want to see how a douche of a guy with minimal lifeskills survives and changes when he finds himself somewhere money doesn't buy him a pass (or even a sandwich). How does he go from his entrenched entitlement to a corruption-fighting superhero? I love that the answer to that might be strewn out, a little thread of insight at a time, episode to episode. So for now, I'm holding out hope for the show to grow on me. Anyone else watching it?

Beauty and the Beast
And, with all the cross-advertising on the CW, it was inevitable that I found myself watching the relaunch of Beauty and the Beast, too. I'm a sucker for Beauty and the Beast myths--my love for Damon and Elena evidence enough--so I was drawn into this one. I like that the 'beauty' is tough but it seems she is tough enough to defend herself for only enough time for the beast to show up to save her time and time again. Like, thank goodness he got there because she was going to eat it but geez--he could be a little speedier with his swooping in.

But really, this is probably going to drop off my watching list pretty quickly. I don't see the appeal of either main character and I can't quite figure out why I should value or even believe their instant chemistry. The man is gorgeous. Nothing beastly about him, unless he gets HULK-MAD but otherwise, this isn't the story of looking past the cover. No, he's gorgeous and he's intelligent and he's been cursed by the military like a lot of vets I know. He can't let other people see him, not because he's hideous or terrifying, but simply because he is supposed to be dead and can't be caught out and about, hale and hearty.

So it isn't Beauty and the Beast so much as it is Beauty and the Fugitive. If you've seen it--what do you think? :)

~*~

Other than that, I've been catching up on past episodes of So You Think You Can Dance and Master Chef here and there. (Don't tell me what happens, please.)

What are you watching? :)
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (tvd:  I'll save you)
I have gotten some good recommendations from reading [livejournal.com profile] wanderlustlover's media consumed posts over the years. I thought I'd start something similar to open conversations about some of the things I am discovering. :)

Television
Robin Hood (BBC) 3.3, 3.4
This is my first time watching Robin Hood. I blazed through the first two seasons rather quickly during nursing and naptime sessions but have slowed down quite a bit with season three.

The Vampire Diaries 3.14, 3.15
Halfway through the third season and I'm still quite content with the show, the writing, the characters, and the pace. I appreciate the nods to the fans, like in the most recent episode when someone pointed out how 'annoying' it is that everyone always trips over themselves to save Elena--often with tragic consequences to everyone else. In the original trilogy, Elena was this golden child, up on a pedestal, and you had to wonder as a reader if she deserved that kind of treatment. In the show, too, you wonder how much any one girl could possibly be worth.

Movies
Persuasion (1995)
This is an old favorite of mine. The steadfast and reliable heroes always get me--so Captain Wentworth is a go-to for when I'm feeling low.

From Prada to Nada (2011)
I would have never watched this based on the title alone, but then I read that it was a somewhat faithful modern adaptation of Sense & Sensibility. It was absolutely endearing. The Marianne character was a bit snobbier than I like to imagine, but the whole thing overall was a big, cheerful, comfortingly Austen tale.

Books
Granddad's Prayers of the Earth by Douglas Wood
This illustrated children's book is wonderful. I discovered it by happy accident browsing in the clearance section of Half Price Books the other day when I was waiting for the books I'd brought in for sale to be evaluated. A boy's grandfather explains how everything on or part of the earth prays. Rivers pray, sparrows pray, people pray.

Each living thing gives
its life to the beauty of
all life, and that gift is
its prayer


I cried in the bookstore reading it and hope to find a copy at the library sometime soon to read it to Graeme. It isn't pagan, per se, but it does acknowledge the divine nature of all creation and animates the inanimate and allows the boy to find his grandfather (and peace) in the world's song after his death.

The Lion and the Mouse by Bernadette Watts
Such a fantastic take on Aesop's fable. The little mouse, because of love and confidence and hard work, saves the lion from a trap. As an environmental tale, it is an inspiring way of telling Graeme that he shouldn't believe people who tell him he is too little to make a difference. Indeed, of all the animals in the jungle, only the mouse was able to save the lion--though all tried.
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (tvd:  I'll save you)
Last night's episode (The Sun Also Rises) was touted as the biggest of the season, with the season finale appearing next Thursday. Shall we chat about it?

Total Spoilers Ahead... )
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (witch's circle)
Oh, Thursdays, how I love thee! A new episode of The Vampire Diaries airs tonight. As I'm cable-free these days, I have to wait until the episode becomes available online tomorrow. Sooo let's chat about the episodes thus far, shall we?

Spoilers up thru Episode 2.08 (Rose). )
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (witch's circle)
Someone recently made and posted this Vampire Diaries fan video. A tiny bit of creative license was taken at the end, but really, I loved getting to see so many of Elena and Damon's moments together on the show as they have evolved from enemies to something else. This has spoilery moments up through the end of the first season and blends both dialogue and music.

Enjoy! :)

windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (witch's circle)
Okay, last night's episode ended the seemingly interminable Olympics hiatus. Let's talk about what happened! )
windinthemaples: A lane of red maple trees in riotous fall color. (witch's circle)
Let's discuss last night's episode of The Vampire Diaries, if you watch such stuff.

Can you believe they're on another hiatus until March 25th? )

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