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Hi Panda Lovers
My new home is going great guns and would love to see you there.
You can get your fill of TV, FILM, OP ED PIECES, and BRISBANE AUSTRALIA FOCUSED PIECES.

Some of the popular tv shows I review are:
SMALLVILLE, VAMPIRE DIARIES, NIKITA, THE WALKING DEAD, CAPRICA, FRINGE, BOARDWALK EMPIRE, MAD MEN, PRETTY LITTLE LIARS, HAWAII FIVE-0, COMMUNITY and many more.

Some come visit.

You can also follow me on Twitter where I link my new articles where I talk back to my followers and love to hear your feedback.

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Review – Easy A

Hi there, I'm Olive and you all think I am a dirty skank.

After getting badly burnt by the Hangover, I was hesitant to journey into Easy A, but some friends who saw it at the movies (whose opinions I mostly agree with) told me that this was a surprisingly good film. And you know what? They were right.

Olive, through the medium of a webcast, decides to set the record straight of her decent into wantoness. Done in amusing chapters, she retells how one lie becomes another and another while trying to help people and the next thing you know you are getting paid for sex via a gift card in the carpark of a restuarant with a guy who you thought liked you.

Pluses:
Great script – the dialogue is very good – yes it suprised me too.
Cute idea well implemented.
Just enough Penn Badgley for him not to be annoying.
Great hat tips to the movies I grew up on.
The twists and turns and the lie upon lie.
The family scenes – hysterical. Made me wish I had a family like that – though as a teenager I would have been horrorified for thinking my family could be cool.
Ah Christians you crack me up – this was so stereotypical it was all I could do not to be outraged at myself for laughing.

Minuses:
Aly Michalka’s portrayal of Rhiannon – probably the weakest character.

This film takes a dark story and retells it with sarcasm, wit and a wry sense of humour. Emma Stone’s Olive was perfect. She captured the sense of the moment and the character. Her throwaway lines were the ones you always wished you had thout of. Easy A is actually something that I would want to watch again on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

#fourpandas
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Review – Caprica – Blowback

The exits are located here, here and here.

This week:
A trap is set for a STO member hiding in plain sight amongst Caprica’s finest. Lucy Rand arrives on Gemenon, hijinks ensue. Clarice’s religious fervour knows no bounds. Amanda in the Lion’s Den. Daniel is running out of time and discovers an uncomfortable truth. Sam can’t believe Joseph and Joseph sells out his morals and memories.

Pluses:
Even more reasons why the clyons are monotheistic.
Great set piece on the jump ship even if it was predictable.
Sam’s reaction when he finds out about the cylons and just to whom they are being sold.
The cylon in action.
The harsh true nature of the STO exhibited both on Geminon and on Caprica.
No Zoe.

Minuses:
No Zoe again which makes me fearful or a Zoe centric ep coming our way.
Grace – shudderific.
What ever happened to Serge?

On the heels of the announcement of their cancellation – Blowback reminds us why this can be such a strong show. Unfortunately we spent too much time on the Greystones (particularly Daniel and to some extent Zoe) in the middle of this journey – and they aren’t really where the story is at. Yes they created the cylons but their real “birth” isn’t their building, but their evolution – which seems to be outside of Greystone Industries. The Tauran subplot is also strong, as is the STO when it isn’t just religious rhetoric. Unfortunately it is too late for this show, but I will continue to delve into the world before the Fall on Caprica.

#fourpandas

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Review – Nikita – One Way

Unusual aliases was the underlying theme of this episode.

This week:
Michael is off on his own revenge laden off the books mission. Nikita and he join forces. Nothing goes to plan, professionally or personally. Nikita reaches out and Michael reaches back – to a point.

Pluses:
Michael backstory – was great to see his motivators.
Nikita and Michael buddy cop/assassins.
Awesome shoot out scene.
Great hand to hand work.
Really plot and implementation.
Percy being Percy.
Great overall dynamic between Nikita and Michael.

Minuses:
The recruit arc was a bit weaker this week – but then the action really had nothing to do with them.

I don’t want to say too much and give away this episode.
Yet again another fantastic episode. Good to see Nikita is now on GO! You really must check this show out – why it doesn’t get advertised I have no idea. This episode had been in, hook, line, sinker and copy of angling times. Hope is lost. There is just vengence.

#fourpandas

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Review – I Love You Phillip Morris – #BIFF

Of all the prison libraries in all the world you had to walk into this one...

This is the ultimate con movie. Ok – it is also a romance movie. Oh and it is a comedy too. But at the end of the day it is all about the con.

Everyone in this movie gets con’ed – everyone – including the viewer – yes I admit I got majorly con’ed. Hook, line, sinker and copy of angling times (to quote Red Dwarf).

But let’s talk about the movie.

Jim Carrey plays police man Steven Russell who is married with a couple of kids, and whom, after years of searching, finds his birth mother who wants nothing to do with him. He packs up his life and heads to Texas where a life changing moment makes him realise he wants to be happy and to be himself – gay. What follows are Russell’s lives, cons, loves and brilliance. As he put it, it is expensive to live on the high on the gay hog. While in prison he falls for Ewen McGregor’s Phillip Morris. Things go well, go badly and well just go. What is the most bizarre part of this “con-rom-com” is that Carrey’s Russell was actually successful at his lives – just greed and lifestyle got the better of him.

Pluses:
Prison romance.
CFO.
Aids tests.
Texas.
Throw away lines.
Carrey really can act – I had forgotten!
Some of McGregor’s acting.

Minuses:
McGregor’s terribly fake eyebrows.
Some of the scenes were a bit OTT.
Trying to cater to the general audience.

Until I saw The Red Chapel, this was my pick of the festival. It isn’t perfect, but is so enthusiastic that you forgive its failings. I look forward to its American release next month.

#fourpandas

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Review – The Vampire Diaries – Katerina

Ms Double Standards is smitten.

 

This week:
Elena gets what might be the truth from Katherine. Elijah isn’t as gone as we thought. Lots of new info. Damon gets lucky. Katherine backstory. Jeremy gets cockblocked.

Pluses:
Caroline being the best friend she used to be again.
Katherine backstory.
Big Bad is back and a Bigger Bad is on the way.
New characters with their own webs.
New twists and turns.
Uber vamp powers activate!
Dobrev’s Katherine.

Minuses:
I think it is funny how I dised the early dismissal of Elijah – he really is a big bad, if not the biggest bad.
Didn’t feel any chemistry between Damon and Rose – but then it was just sex – for now.

Overall it was a smooth episode – just the right mix of tension, multiple story lines and backstory. This episode continues the theme that every African American in Mystic Falls is a witch/warlock. Katherine’s motivations, if they can be believed, make her much less one dimensional. Very nice indeed.

#fourpandas
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Review – Nikita – Resistance

Hi there. My name is Nikita and I am here to help (aka bring down Division)

This week:
Nothing it really what it seems, even when you think you know the truth.

Pluses:
Brilliant Michael development.
Was good to see Nikita in the background.
Alex really stepped up.
Great story idea – neat twists and turns all the way through.
Owen backstory and intersection w Nikita.

Minuses:
Percy seemed a bit “off.”
Was really hoping to see Owen and Nikita buddy cop.

Dang this show can deliver. Action, drama, tugging the heart strings and possibly misplaced hope and trust. I am so pleased Nikita got the full season run. If the second half of the series is half as good as the first I am going to be one happy panda.

#fourpandas
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Review – Fringe – Amber 31422


How coincidental! I think I may be a doppleganger and you are a twin!

 

This week:
We are back in the alternate universe. People are still alive after being ambered. Switch and double switch. Hallucinations. Crossing over. Olivia coming to terms with the truth.

Pluses:
Greater understanding of Walternate’s motivations and conscious.
Greater insight to the impact the mini-blackholes are having on this universerse.
Nice use of Peter.
Awesome jumps!
Olivia’s realisation of the truth.

Minuses:
Still no development of Astrid.

I am really enjoying the RED episodes. I can see myself understanding more and more their predicament and that how, in both worlds, the best of intentions has truly drastic consequences. Part of my wants a BLUE episode next week – to see what is happening with Peter and Fauxlivia, but a bigger part of me wants to continue to explore the other Universe as I am finding their motivators incredibly engaging.

#fourpandas
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Review – Cafe Conti – Wilston

I cannot begin to tell you just how good this was.

Nestled in Wilston this cafe has been a staple of the Brisbane Cafe Scene for some time – yet surprisingly I had only ever done tea and coffee there – never a meal. From memory I did watch a friend eat there… Anyway – they are supposed to be the bees knees for breakfast – so after a couple of average breakfasts at my friend’s and my usual breakfast hangout, we ventured to Conti.

I am pretty boring when it comes to breakfast. Scrambled eggs makes me a happy panda. You would be surprised just how many places do a terrible scrambled eggs – you would think it impossible to screw up, but oh yes, some manage to destroy scrambled eggs with great skill. Thankfully, Conti is not one of those places.

I chose the Dill and Parsley Scrambled Eggs served withTuscan spiced potatoes and tomato chutney served on olive sour dough. The food was awesome! The eggs were fresh, fluffy and perfectly cooked. The bread was toasted enough to avoid possible sogginess, yet not so hard as to be icky to eat. The potatoes were just enough to round out the meal without picking an extra side and the chutney was super yummy!

My breakfast buddy ordered their legendary French Toast with crispy bacon, maple syrup, and vanilla mascarpone cheese and it was, well, Legendary. I didn’t try the French Toast – but from how it looked to it being completely devoured I can only assume it was just as good tasting as it looked.

As I am still caffeine free (well not drinking Coffee, Coke/Pepsi and consuming herbal or decaf tea as a preference) I went for their Chai Latte (yes I know it is a black tea base and therefore contains some caffeine). What was really great to see was that at Conti it wasn’t made from a Chai powder – but from real Chai tea in warmed milk. The accompanying honey just put the icing on the cake, so to speak.

Pluses:
Real food – nothing processed.
Great service – staff super engaging and happy.
Good menu selection.
Fast service – we were there at 7.30am as a doors opened though so can’t comment on peak times.

Minuses:
Doesn’t open till 7.30am.
Can be hard to jag a park if not there at 7.30am.
No CityCycle station close by (outside the coverage area).

Yes it is a little more expensive than many other breakfast options, but if the quality is outstanding, I am happy to pay $5 more. The difference was worth a lot more than $5 worth in my opinion.

#fourpandas
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Cafe Conti on Urbanspoon


Review – Community – Epidemiology

Go on... pick up something again, oh great Dragon Turtle!

This week:
Toxic tacos. Zombies. The end of days. Flying cat. Awesome costumes. ABBA. 6 hour response.

Pluses:
Alien (heck there was even a cat – and I so wanna see the outtakes of the cat wrangler trying to throw that cat!).
Last man standing.
The Dean’s playlist.
Believable  (within the world of Community).
PokerFace.
StarBurns!
Chang!
Jeff cool – always.
Human Centipede.

Minuses:
Trying to think what I didn’t like…

Let’s be honest, the bar is so high for Community that even a great episode like this one pales in comparison  to greats like Modern Warfare. That being said, there were a lot of very clever moments, and they got away with a lot! I wonder what the future will be for Shirley… Will Troy tell?

#fourpandas
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