Eclectic Pop

where "pop" culture gets "eclectic"

TV Report Card | 'Game of Thrones' Season 4 Review

Overview: An adaptation of the second half of George R.R. Martin’s “A Storm of Swords”; the season found the Lannister’s pitted against each other more than ever, the surviving Stark girls coming into their own, Daenarys continuing her rule as a queen and the lone surviving Baratheon continuing his fight for the throne. All of this as the battle at The Wall came to a head.

Storyline Pros: Everything involving Tyrion was phenomenal. His trial diatribe against his accusers and detractors was sheer brilliance. He is a fascinating character and when he is not on-screen, the series doesn’t boast the same intrinsic glow that it does when he is on. It’s like watching color drain from a painting. His relationship with Tywin remains one of the most fascinating father/son dynamics that television has recently explored.

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TV Report Card | 'The Blacklist' Season 1 Review

Storyline Pros: Seldom can a series sustain a core mystery that provides few payoffs and never appear to be dragging out its storyline. "The Blacklist" is breaking the mold. It's all about enjoying the ride. While a question bigger than the “who” and “what” looms. It’s the “why”. Why does Red care about Elizabeth Keen? The answer seems obvious and yet in the next moment a subtle remark seems to belie another possibility. Whatever the reason, their father/daughter, criminal/detective, love/hate relationship is fascinating to watch unfold.

Red is by far the most compelling new character of the 2013/14 season. Rich with monologues, bitter with anger, woeful with sad regrets and stunning with a sincere confidence and bravado. He is the epitome of slippery. The writing for this character is simply masterful. Contrasting him is Liz, his complete opposite, except when it comes to their shared display of ferocity. In which case, a possible family resemblance of traits shines through. Among the memorable storylines this season, Liz vs. Tom ranked the highest. From a tenderly loving duo to a full blown rage-fest, the decline of the Keen marriage made for entertainingly bittersweet drama.

TV Report Card | 'The Tomorrow People' Season 1 Review

Overview: In the second half of the series’ first and only season, The Tomorrow People’s leader returned. There was a revolt and eventually peacemaking.

Storyline Pros: Action and story resolutions plowed through the remaining episodes of the series. The character development found most on a full circle journey. There was real purpose that drove the second act of the season. Stephen’s father being thawed from his deep freeze and his reconciliation with his family was dealt with interestingly. Addressing the difference between what being a Tomorrow Person and a “normal” human meant was explored with depth. At the beginning of the series it had always been irksome that there was an implied variance between the two and it was cleared up nicely.

TV Report Card | 'Revenge' Season 3 Review

Overview: Emily won a battle but not the war, against the Graysons. Conrad schemed and sparred with Victoria, who finally learned Emily’s big secret. Daniel lost more IQ points and Charlotte, well, she was Charlotte.

Storyline Direction Pros: The infighting and bickering in the Grayson household continued to play with ferocious excitement. In the second half of the season the show seemed to be hurtling towards a definitive resolution. The introduction of Stevie offered a refreshing angle to the Grayson dysfunction and an unanswered paternity question was left to linger. Stevie’s battle with alcoholism and her addiction to the Hamptons served as a possible omen to Emily’s and other characters’ future. 

The Stevie/Victoria/Conrad exchanges were lively although the timeline and previously established connections between the characters underwent a retcon whiplash. In the first season, it was known that Conrad had a son with his first wife and that son was in full knowledge of his parents.