Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Sons of Anarchy: Opie Sesame

I think Opie sort of looks like a young, angry Santa Claus.

Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy Ho ho ho. Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy

But unlike Mr. Claus, Opie has no cause to be jolly. 
 Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy Screw jolly Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy
Opie has a shit life. Soon he'll be wifeless, dadless, and best friendless. I'm surprised he hasn't gone bat-shit before now. And where are his kids at the moment? Does Lyla have them?

Maybe it's more Chewbacca than Santa Claus...

Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy Arrgg. Grrhn. Gahr. Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy
Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy
Opie is one of the most hard-worn characters on the show. He has no moments of levity. I don't recall him ever laughing at a joke or making a snide remark. He's solid and he's tough. I think if all these men jumped out of the television, he'd be the one I'd want to get away from fastest.

And oh my God - how scary would it be if they all jumped out of the television?

Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy
After all this, the preview for next week made it look like Jax is going to leave Opie out of the vengeance game. Opie deserves his revenge. He's lost more than any of the others. He's a whole wife up on Jax.

Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy Ryan Hurst as Opie Winston on Sons of Anarchy
Maybe he's more of a wolf? Or Jesus in leather?

Look at me - bringing it back to Santa Claus.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

American Horror Story: Tate is Rubber Man Pt. 2

One of the things I find strange about American Horror Story is the way it slowly lets the air out of each twist before we actually get to it. We knew Tate was dead before it was officially revealed. We knew the school shooting had actually happened before we met the Dead Breakfast Club. And we knew Constance was his mom before she actually said it out loud.  

Evan Peters as Tate Langdon in American Horror Story: Rubber Man
Evan Peters as Tate Langdon in American Horror Story: Rubber Man
Evan Peters as Tate Langdon in American Horror Story: Rubber Man
The internet was pretty confident that Tate was Rubber Man before last week's episode. It's funny because Tate was the number one suspect after the first couple episodes. Then the suspicion sort of wore off until right before last Wednesday when random spoilers went all leaky online. Those spoilers gave me a good solid six hours to absorb and accept that Tate was the Rubber Man before the show even confirmed the information.

Evan Peters shirtless Tate Langdon Taissa Farmiga as Violet Harmon Tate and Violet in bed on American Horror Story
Evan Peters shirtless Tate Langdon Taissa Farmiga as Violet Harmon Tate and Violet in bed on American Horror Story
The thing is, I don't necessarily have a problem with him being the Rubber Man. I can buy that there are two sides to Tate - one side does all the dirty work, the other side is very confused and young. I can also buy that he has some weird need to help out women like Nora who treat him more like a son than his mother ever did.

Evan Peters shirtless Tate Langdon Taissa Farmiga as Violet Harmon Tate and Violet in bed on American Horror Story
Evan Peters shirtless Tate Langdon Taissa Farmiga as Violet Harmon Tate and Violet in bed on American Horror Story
Evan Peters shirtless Tate Langdon Taissa Farmiga as Violet Harmon Tate and Violet in bed on American Horror Story
What I keep getting hung up on is the brutal and compassionless murder of Chad and Patrick. They are going to have to give Tate one jacked-up backstory for the sodomizing-with-a-firepoker thing to even make sense. And then his line about the romantic nature of them being trapped together forever. Did he mean that? It sounded genuine. Was that good Tate, rationalizing after the fact or was it still Tate Prime? Or am I crazy with this whole double-Tate business and is the show not as clever as I'm hoping? 

Evan Peters as Tate Langdon in American Horror Story: Rubber Man Evan Peters AHS Tate
Evan Peters as Tate Langdon in American Horror Story: Rubber Man Evan Peters AHS Tate
Either way, the ending with Tate and Violet was creepy. He's pleased that he prevented Violet from leaving and she suddenly realizes that she was a major bitch to her mom. And Violet hears Vivian say that she wasn't shooting at Ben but at the rapist in the rubber suit. So what does Violet know? Or think she knows? How much will be too much? She already knows he shot up a school - and she seemed able to get over that...

If you can get over me shooting up a school, surely we can move past me knocking up your mom... 
Right? 
I thought so.
I'm not sure this duality thing is going to be explained much more. It might just be the way Tate is. We see it and we can determine for ourselves when he's being genuine and when he's being twisted and evil. Hopefully I'm wrong about that. Vagueness isn't my favorite quality in a television character. But either way, Tate being Rubber Man means Evan Peters has more to do. And that's a reveal I can get behind.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Boardwalk Empire's Jimmy Darmody: Shirtless and Angry

I try really hard to like Jimmy Darmody. Not 'like' as in want to be besties and go to brunch with him, but like as in find him interesting and engaging. But it's difficult to feel much of anything toward his character because he's just so cold and emotionless. I have no doubt that Michael Pitt is going for cold and emotionless (he might call it guarded) and no doubt that it's part of why his relationship with his wife doesn't work (that and the whole she's a lesbian thing...) But hopefully last night's episode will finally shake Jimmy up.

As I mentioned in my last Jimmy Darmody post, I like him best when he's having twisted mommy issues. I like him second best when he's shirtless and angry. 

Michael Pitt shirtless Yes, I'd like two pizzas with onions and anchovies. Jimmy Darmody shirtless
Michael Pitt What do you mean you're out of onions?! You're making me shirtless and angry! Jimmy Darmody
Michael Pitt shirtless They're out of onions! Should I arrange to have them assisnated? Jimmy Darmody shirtless
The best Jimmy scene of the past few weeks was the one in which he finally offered his wife a kernel of truth about his life and what he does. Unfortunately for Angela, knowing the truth spells trouble with a capital T and that rhymes with D and that stands for dead.

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire
Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire
Last night, dear wifey told a joke, gave Jimmy a smooch, and...

Jimmy Darmody and Angela kiss before she dies Boardwalk Empire Aleska Palladino Michael Pitt
got shot in the face (along with her poor girlfriend who got QUITE the raw deal.) 

Aleksa Palladino as Angela Darmody, shot dead on Boardwalk Empire
Oh, Jimmy. What to do. What to do. Maybe he's going to flip out now! Maybe he's going to become a mad-man. At the very least, he'll be a single dad and that's usually cause for angst. Come now, Boardwalk Empire. You've opened the door, now give me something!

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire

Thursday, November 24, 2011

American Horror Story: Tate Is Rubber Man

Sigh. There it was. Tate's the Rubber Man.

I'd like to go into this more thoroughly later on, but I think the show is working very hard to demonstrate the two sides to Tate. I think it is a credit to Evan Peters that we can (I think...) tell the difference between Tate and Tate Prime.  

Just a few observations from tonight's episode. 

First - the two shots of Tate revealing that he's Rubber Man right after he's hooked up with Vivian.

Evan Peters as Tate Langdon as the Rubber Man on American Horror Story AHS Tate Evan Peters Tate 
Evan Peters as Tate Langdon as the Rubber Man on American Horror Story AHS Tate Evan Peters Tate 
There was a creepy jump cut between these two shots for a reason. I believe right here we can see the clear demarkation between Tate and Tate Prime. 

Second, when Nora reached out to touch Tate's face after Tate had offed poor Chad and Patrick, he did not flinch as he did last week when Constance reached out to touch his face. I don't really know what that means apart from he hates Constance and wants to help Nora. But there it is.

Evan Peters as Tate Langdon on American Horror Story Evan Peters Tate Langdon American Horror Story Tate AHS Season 1 Tate American Horror Story
Evan Peters as Tate Langdon on American Horror Story Evan Peters Tate Langdon American Horror Story Tate AHS Season 1 Tate American Horror Story 
Finally, Tate told Hayden that he's tired of hurting people. The "I'm tired" comment is an echo of what he said to Violet after she tried (?) to kill herself. Is Tate tired of always having to switch into Tate Prime? Does Tate have to expend energy to become Tate Prime? Are the two Tates totally aware of each other? Does the sweet, weepy Tate remember that he killed Chad and Patrick (because I still don't believe he remembers the school shooting). 

Maybe regular Tate is still a young, seventeen-year-old kid and Tate Prime is the aged, house-possesed evil version. One of my AHS buddies did point out that "good" Tate seems to have a childlike quality about him. Maybe Tate is more like Moira that we thought?! Or maybe it has to do with the presence of ladies? I don't know...

I have my fingers crossed that AHS doesn't jump the tracks in the final weeks. I'll admit, I'm a little worried that it might. Hopefully they'll have a solid season conclusion that allows for Evan Peters to be in season two. Really, that's all I care about.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

American Horror Story: Tate Shirtless? Yes Please.

Yeah. I have no shame. But it's finally Wednesday! Who needs shame on a Wednesday, amiright?

 


Man-oh-man, I can't wait for tonight. Hopefully that shirtless scene will yield many swoon-worthy pics.

I've pondered how I would feel IF Tate turns out to be the Rubber Man. I've decided I don't care as long as it makes some sort of sense story-wise. Like he's being controlled. Or he has split personalities. I'm really hoping it's not just Tate's-super-evil-we-fooled-you-ha-ha...

I'm holding out hope that it's not him but I sort of think it is. My wish is that it's Constance's boy-toy instead. It would just be so much simpler if it were someone alive.

Either way, we need to start getting some explanations on the rules of ghostdom. Like how can a ghost impregnate anyone? What exactly is the genetic material within a ghost? How do they bleed? Where do they go when they're not visible? We've gotten lots of backstory answers these past few weeks but they haven't been so generous with the rules of the world. I need structure, damn it!

Whatever. As long as Evan Peters is around, I'll keep watching. You hear that, Ryan Murphy?! The second you nix Tate, I'm out.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Cigarette Burns and Broken Noses: Angst Initiate Logan Echolls

Veronica Mars character Logan Echolls is an Angst All Star.

YEAH, I am.
It's hard to believe in the beginning of the series that the douche bag who drives up in his hideous yellow Nissan XTerra is going to be one of the angiest characters to ever grace a television screen. But the slow build is one of the best written aspects of Logan's character.

Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls on Veronica Mars

Episode fifteen, Ruskie Business, happens to contain one of my favorite Logan moments. He misses his mommy. He's holding out hope that she didn't Roy Raymond herself (totally asinine reference, I know...) when his stupid sister shows up and ruins everything. PLUS she alludes to Logan's abusive upbringing in front of Veronica. 


Finally, it hits Logan and his hard, candy coating shatters, revealing the soft, chewy center within. 

Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls on Veronica Mars
Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls cries on Veronica Mars
Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls cries on Veronica Mars
Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls cries on Veronica Mars
Veronica is there to provide the hugs and comfort that TV ladies are made for. Logan crying is just about the best thing ever. There are characters who cry all the time - and I love them for it - and then there are characters like Logan who so rarely crack. When they do, it's so. much. fun. 

Then - he gets plastered while dressed as Tom Cruise. You know. Like you do. Those are worthy pictures too.

Tickle tickle!

Not only does this episode contain a fantastically fantastical Logan scene, but it also contains the line, "Wang chung or I'll kick your ass!" Logan is great. And him and Veronica are great. And the only un-great thing about them is that there wasn't more. Sigh. BUT! Happily for Ye Old Angst Report, there is plenty more to discuss in the future. Welcome to The Angst Report, Logan Echolls.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Angst Initiate: Chris Miles on Skins

I'm pretty sad American networks keep remaking amazing British television. Once in a while, it works out. The Office used to be good and Queer As Folk also translated pretty well. These once-in-a-while cases are why they keep trying. But more often than not, the remakes are pale reflections of their British counterparts. And when the remakes are absolutely god awful (as they SO often are) they turn people off watching the British original all together. And that's a huge shame. 

Case in point: Skins. The British version is amazing and the American one sucked balls. And if you're one of the twelve people who watched the American version, trust me, try the original. Seriously. Especially if you love angsty boys as much as I do.

Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins When will the American's learn? Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins
The thing I don't love about the British version is that they change casts every two years. I haven't actually watched past series two because I'm still angry that all the characters I fell in love with just vanished. But series one and two are simply too phenomenal to be left off The Angst Report. 

Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins
There aren't many shows that give you a huge buffet of angst ridden boys. Vampire Diaries is the only one currently on the air that I think qualifies. Friday Night Lights did it too. And so did Skins. 

It's difficult for me to pick a favorite character from the first generation of Skins. I loved each and every one, including the chicks. And all of the boys had serious angst issues over the course of the two years (except Anwar...sorry Dev Patel. But you've done okay for yourself despite having the least interesting character on Skins.)

Spoilers ahead.

I decided to write about Chris first because...well...he dies. And it's awful. And depressing. And I was legitimately shocked when it happened. Dying is pretty much the angiest thing a character can do. I mean, suicide is the angiest way to die, and Chris doesn't kill himself, but in this case, that might just make it worse. Because personality-wise, he wasn't angsty at all. He was a character who loved life and laughed a lot. Over the course of the two seasons, he gets everything taken away from him, piece by piece. 

Joe Dempsie as Chris on Skins I'm going do die soon, Jal. Is this trip really necessary? Joe Dempsie as Chris on Skins
It's hard to understand who Chris is before the first Chris centric episode. At first, he's sort of a merry prankster, mostly just comic relief like Anwar. But when we learn some of his backstory (dead brother, father abandoned him, mother later abandons him) his crappy situation really comes into focus. 

Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins
Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins Being angsty means loosing all my chapstick. Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles on Skins
The episode also makes you realize how great Joe Dempsie is. Chris doesn't have many layers before this. It's basically all smart-ass humor. And therefore Joe Dempsie doesn't have a ton to do. But in episode four, when Chris is left alone and he has to go begging his dad for help, he 180s personality-wise. Suddenly his bravado is gone and he's all drawn in on himself. And at this exact right moment, there's Jal. Future love. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, all angsty boys are better when there's a girl around to witness the pain.

Joe Dempsie as Chris Miles and Larissa Wilson as Jal on Skins Chris and Jal Skins
Jal and Chris are a great couple and Jal's a great character in her own right. Skins is one of very few shows where the female characters are as varied and interesting the males. There's more to be said about Chris (and more to screen-cap!) but episode four is really Chris 101. And it's delightfully angsty.