Tag Archives: TV Reviews

TV Review: Wednesday (on Netflix)

By Andrea Alfaro

Now streaming only on Netflix, the much anticipated horror-comedy, Wednesday, has made its debut on the 23rd of November with well known director, Tim Burton, directing the entirety of this series’ first season. 

This 8-episode show is based on the iconic Addams Family, created by Charles Addams. It follows the only daughter of the Addams, Wednesday, played by Jenna Ortega throughout her investigation into the secrets of her new school for outcasts, Nevermore Academy.

It features all the elements someone can ask for from a horror comedy targeted towards teens. Satirical humor, a gloomy but beautiful atmosphere, and a story full of entertaining, but predictable, twists. Unfortunately, what this series lacked was a full cast who had both the chemistry and equal acting ability to share a screen. Along with a monster who looked strangely like an ugly snapchat filter.

What really makes a show great is the cast. They have the important job of bringing fictional characters to life and immersing an audience into the narrative. Without a good cast a movie could completely fall apart and become a laughing stock rather than a respected form of media. A great example of this is The Room, which is probably the only drama/romance everyone can agree deserves to be labeled as a comedy with how terrible the whole production was, especially with its horrendous acting.

Wednesday is definitely not as bad as The Room. It includes a line up of very talented actors, like Jenna Ortega and Gwendoline Christie, who plays Nevermore’s principal. Actors like them are what made the show so interesting to watch. 

Some of the cast sadly did miss the mark, such as Luis Guzmán, who plays Gomez Addams. He looked great, physically, for the role, but as I saw his portrayal of Gomez, I realized that it felt as if he was cosplaying as Gomez rather than being Gomez. His performance lacked energy and enthusiasm which made him seem out of place and his lines forced. The absence of chemistry between Guzman and his co-star Catherine Zeta-Jones, who played Morticia Addams, didn’t help his already poor execution either.

Along with the acting comes the issue of the CGI. The show featured a beautiful setting and nice wardrobe that really displayed each character’s personality. Filming in such a place that creates such a dark ambience and acquiring clothes that match each character exactly must have cost a pretty penny, which is why I’m assuming the CGI took a hit. The supposedly terrifying monster in the show had a big part in breaking my immersion. Whenever it made an appearance instead of feeling scared I found myself being more puzzled as to why it looked like a zombie from the Plants vs Zombies games. When I was supposed to be gasping because of shock I was instead gasping for air when I couldn’t stop laughing at how strange and unreal it looked. 

With the Addams Family being such well known figures in pop culture, I would think the casting would be spot on and the CGI would be great. The lack of chemistry, passable CGI, and good acting from certain people was disappointing.

However, overall the negatives didn’t outweigh the positives. It was honestly a great show with a storyline that kept me on the edge of my seat.

Practically everyone and their pets know or have at least heard of the Addams Family, so I viewed this season with some high expectations. I’m happy to say that they didn’t entirely disappoint me.

In my opinion it was a show worthy of 4 stars. Was it perfect? No. Was it an amazing show? Absolutely. Hopefully if there’s a 2nd season it will be worthy of a full five star review. Until then 4 stars seems like the perfect score for Netflix’s new show Wednesday.

The Book Of Boba Fett Review

By: Orion

The Book of Boba Fett released its season finale on February 9th on Disney+, with 7 episodes to boast, each of which run from about 50 to 60 minutes. The series serves as a sequel/spinoff of The Mandalorian and by extension the Return of The Jedi with many of the pivotal cast members from the Mandalorian returning to reprise their roles. ​​Temuera Morrison returns as the titular character, Ming-Na Wen and Pedro Pascal also return respectively as Fennec Shand and Din Djarin. Others who reprise their roles are Timothy Olyphant (Cobb Vanth), Emily Swallow (The Armorer), Rosario Dawson (Ahsoka Tano), Corey Burton as the voice of Cad Bane (portrayed physically by Dorian Kingi), and most notably Mark Hamill voicing Luke Skywalker (Graham Hamilton as the onset performer).

The story begins right after the ending of the second season of The Mandalorian with Boba Fett becoming the new Daimyo of Tatooine after taking it from Bib Fortuna who succeeded Jabba the Hutt after his death. Flashbacks also occur early within the first half of the season, they tell of Boba’s escape from the sarlacc pit, his travels and tragedies of traveling with Tusken Raiders, even some scenes of his boyhood in Kamino.

The Tuskens capturing him and making him one of their own after he earns their respect has had a profound impact on his outlook on life, it explains his transition from ruthless bounty hunter to a more diplomatic anti-hero. He has trouble earning the respect and tribute of the local crime bosses and citizens of Mos Espa without outright using an iron fist like his predecessors. He instead uses more favors and his reputation along with job offers to those in need and alliance compromises to gain what he wants. In a departure from his original characterization, Boba is much more forgiving than his comic/movie past self which works towards his benefit as his forgiveness gains him many allies against the criminal Pike Syndicate.

The Pikes are the main antagonists of the show and are the reason why Boba didn’t stay with Tuskens as they were killed by the Pikes without his knowledge (ironically when he was going to town to strike a deal with them on behalf of the Tuskens). Distraught and saddened, Boba sets out to find his armor that he lost and his old ship from Bib with the help of a now partially cyberized Fennec Shand who he saved to enlist her help. He then takes his revenge on a speed biker gang he thought responsible and goes off with Fennec to the events of the Mandalorian to find his armor. Boba has to deal with a wookie bounty hunter sent by Jabba’s twin cousins and unemployed bandit cyborg youths, all of which he recruits as his employees as a way to reconcile their differences and keep as allies.

Meanwhile, the story checks on Din Djarin, his travels as a bounty hunter without Grogu, his defending of the title of holding the darksaber from other mandalorians, and his rejection from his mandalorian tribe by revealing his face to someone else willingly. After getting a new ship Din and promising to help Fennec, Din travels to visit Grogu training with Luke Skywalker on a forest planet. He wants to give him a beskar chain mail gift in person and he meets Ahsoka Tano and R2-D2 who promise to give it to Grogu, of which Luke does and offers Grogu a choice to be a jedi or be with Din again.

Boba has to strike a truce of neutrality with the lower criminal lords and Mos Espa mayor to not join the Pikes in their slave spice trade, and has Din to embark on the help of Cobb Vanth and his people of Freetown. The Pikes in turn bomb a local Mos Espa club called the Sancturay and hire Cad Bane to kill Cobb in hopes it would scare his people into not joining Boba and letting the spice trade run through. Boba (who at this point is very much opposed to the spice trade) is learned of the truth by Cad Bane that the Pikes are the ones who killed his Tusken tribe; to add insult to injury, the local crime lords have revolted against Boba in favor of the Pikes. The people of Freetown and Grogu (who chose to be with Din) with the help of R2, have come in Boba’s time of need to help him and his allies defeat the Pikes/Cad Bane and their coalition. Boba confronts and kills Cad Bane, effectively killing the last part of past bounty hunter life and has Fennec assassinate the rest of the local crime/Pike leaders who are hiding on Mos Eisley. The story wraps up with Boba and his allies earning the respect of Mos Espa, and Din leaving with Grogu.     Overall the show had high viewership but mixed reviews from both critics and audiences alike with the show having some highs and lows, particularly with the character departure of Boba from his more established characterization.

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier summary

By Brandon Nunez

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier has just finished wrapping up its first season and its last using the moniker Falcon, with it being changed to Captain America by the season’s end. It has the two main deuteragonists to Captain America in Falcon/Sam Wilson and the Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes. Their roles are reprised by Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan. Other past MCU characters have reprised their roles such as Daniel Brühl as Baron Zemo, Emily VanCamp as Sharon Carter, and Florence Kasumba as Ayo.

The plot centers around Sam and Bucky’s recovery and rocky relationship post-Endgame and on dealing with Sam giving up the mantle of Captain America given to him by Steve. John Walker (Wyatt Russell) is soon issued the mantle as Captain America by the U.S. Government, and the story also follows his descent from Captain America to a possible antagonist stripped of his title. As John is slowly becoming less and less like Captain America throughout the show, Sam becomes more accustomed to taking over the role and does so by the end of the season.

Sam also begins to find out the dark truth of the U.S. super soldier serum and shield post-WWII and the people of color affected by it. Bucky begins to figure out a way to make amends for his crimes as the Winter Soldier in a self-respectful and honest way, that isn’t just avenging. All the while he is trying to stop Karli Morgenthau (Erin Kellyman) and her group called the Flag Smashers, who wish for a world without borders through means of super soldier violence as it was a post-Thanos snap.

However, Karli also deals with the aftermath of her killings as well as those affected by the actions of the governments trying to stop her and wonders if the cycle of violence is all her doing and is it worth continuing for a post-Endgame world. The show contains themes of self-worth and loathing, American identity, identity in general, ideological differences in worldview benefits, cycles of violence, and racism.

Cobra Kai Season 3 Review

By Brandon Nunez

The third season of Cobra Kai has officially wrapped up with 10 new episodes. It has the return of most of the ensemble cast reprising their roles, including but not limited to Ralph Macchio as Daniel LaRusso, William Zabka as Johnny Lawrence, Xolo Maridueña as Miguel Diaz, Martin Kove as John Kreese, and Tanner Buchanan as Robby Keene, among many others.

Season 3 takes place directly after the events of the school karate fight and John Kreese’s takeover of Cobra Kai in season two’s ending. The story also has Miguel in a coma and paraplegic from his injuries that he sustained from Robby, who is now on the run.

The story then continues with multiple different storylines such as Miguel learning to walk again, the negative reception of karate by the Valley after the school fight and its effects on the cast, and on the relationships that become repaired and broken from the aftermath of the school fight. It all culminates in a fight at a Christmas party between the students of Kreese’s Cobra Kai and a coalition of Johnny and Daniel’s students, and another fight immediately after–at first between Johnny and Kreese, then Kreese and Daniel.

The season also gives some much needed backstory on John Kreese’s youth and his time in Vietnam to show why he became the ruthless villain that he was in the movies and is in the show. It also has returning characters from the first and second Karate Kid movies such as Daniel’s former love interest Kumiko (reprised by Tamlyn Tomita), his old rival Chozen Toguchi (reprised by Yuji Okumoto), and Daniel and Johnny’s old high school girlfriend Ali Mills (reprised by Elisabeth Shue). All three of which help at least one of our protagonists for the better and even manage to (perhaps indirectly) bring the two together in the final episode.

The show has gotten flack for not including a major Asian character in the show (with the exception of Kumiko and Chozen who only appeared in some episodes of this season) as a show based on Asian martial arts should have at least one main Asian character. This criticism is fairly justified as many of the minority characters are often relegated as side characters with the notable exception of Miguel, and to some extent his mother Carmen (reprised by Vanessa Rubio).

Despite this, the show shines in almost every other aspect from a cohesive plot and likable characters to dialogue and action, which can become corny in some aspects but never enough to be overwhelming and never for very long.