The Head Over Feels Entertainer of the Year!

Tom Hiddleston Buckets of Love

Posted by Sage

Were you expecting someone else?

TOO BAD.

Kim and I didn’t spend a full minute choosing our first annual Head Over Feels Entertainer of the Year. Talk about a no-brainer. Tom Hiddleston is the definition of “the whole package,” and what a year he had. From blockbuster sequels to Shakespeare on stage and screen to busting a tasty move or two, Hiddles has kept us on our toes in 2013.

He may be fangirl catnip, but his appeal crosses genre and gender – I dare you to find someone who DOESN’T like this man. Beyond his effortless talent and presence lies the heart of a true gentleman. Hiddles is endlessly charming (and charmed) with his fans, and he approaches every one of his roles, whether it be a Henry V or a Loki, with the same excitement and work ethic. And did I mention that the man can DANCE?

Without further ado, we give you a year’s worth of Tom Hiddleston’s greatest hits. Hold onto your heart. It’s going to be a bumpy post.

He Traveled with Unicef to Guinea, West Africa

Tom Hiddleston Unicef

Tom kicked off the year with Unicef, taking a trip to Guinea to see its programs in action. Now an official UK Ambassador of the organization, he reflected on the experience in his final field blog. I recommend reading all of them, if you can.

“I am no saviour. I’m absolutely the last person on the planet who can practically help. I don’t know how to make the different types of therapeutic feeding milk. I’m no chemist. I’m no doctor. I’m no engineer. I can’t manufacture polio vaccines or organise their transportation to the health centres in Saramoussayah or Bissikirima. I can’t build schools, or design drainage systems. I can’t provide the women and children of Mandiana with water….All I can do now is help make people aware of what is happening, of what they are doing. That is all that I can do. For now.”

He Ruled in Hollow Crown: Henry V

Henry V The Hollow Crown Tom Hiddleston

In March of this year, PBS aired the Hollow Crown, a filmed series of Shakespeare’s historical plays. Tom starred as Henry V and proved to the US that every single British actor we co-opt for one of our comic book franchises has the chops to climb onto a horse and go conquer France.

The Hollow Crown Henry V Tom Hiddleston I am the Prince of Wales

He Took San Diego Comic Con and He Took It in Style

Tom Hiddleston SDCC Where are Your Avengers Now

We firmly established by in July that Tom Hiddleston single-handedly WON Comic Con.

Actors are very protective of their reputations and extremely wary of typecasting, lest you assume that anyone in Tom’s position would have gleefully Loki-ed up and delivered that speech to Hall H. It’s simply not true.

Tom Hiddleston SDCC Personally Punch You in the Dick

And then he moseyed over to Nerd HQ and enchanted everyone who gathered for his “Conversations with a Cause.” My personal favorite moment was when he easily slipped into a flawless impression of host Zachary Levi and recalled the threatening text that his Thor: The Dark World co-star sent to him to get him there.

“Hiddleston…I have an inkling that you are coming on a top secret mission to Comic Con. If you do not swing by Nerd HQ, I will PERSONALLY punch you in the dick.”

Ahhh, friendship.

Tom Hiddleston SDCC Nerd HQ Two Lives

But the rest of that hour was downright inspiring. It could have gone on for three more and I wouldn’t have been bored. He talked about the above and beyond research (from classic Marvel to Norse legends) that he did to play Loki; how it was Tilda Swinton who first introduced him to “Gangnam Style;” and explained his life philosophy to a room full of rapt fans.

“Listen, I’m from London. France is two hours on the train, for heaven’s sake. So the quote is, ‘On a deux vies, le seconde commence quand on realise qu’il y on a seulement une.’ Which for those of you who understand that is, “we all have two lives. The second begins when you realize you only have one.” And so, I’m not wasting any time. And the thing is, with negativity, for my money, they are just, they are like clouds that pass across the sun. And they will pass, they’re just feelings. It’s important not to dwell on them. To just move past it. Maybe it’s my nature. There is so much about life that’s amazing. And when you key into that, I don’t know it’s just a strange thing. I get excited about stuff, I can’t explain it. And I try not to get bogged down in disappointment.”

See?? It’s okay to get excited about stuff! Hiddles says so. He’d fit in so well here at Head Over Feels.

He Was a Total Gentlemen to Our Girl Emma Watson

GQ Hiddleston Emma WatsonGQ Hiddleston Emma Watson microphone

When he presented Ms. Hermione Granger with the GQ 2013 Woman of the Year award, Tom was his typical gracious self. And it was a fandom collision of epic proportions. Can these two do a movie together already?

He Showed His Inner Dis-Nerd at D23

Tom appeared at D23 to promote The Pirate Fairy, an animated Disney film where he voices another smooth-ass Brit: Captain Hook. Then he broke out into a little “Bare Necessities,” which is completely unrelated to anything, just because he’s a treasure.

He Launched a Steady Charm Onslaught during the Thor: The Dark World Press Tour

Tom Hiddleston Up All Night to Get Loki

Listen. You don’t have to be on the Marvel payroll to know that press junkets are dry, endless time sucks that are generally the un-fun part of being a ginormous movie star. Of course, Tom treats every interview like its his first and ever interviewer like she’s from the most important outlet he’s ever been in. Every day of that tour brought us a few more Hiddleston gems, and usually double when paired with fictional (or not…) brother Chris Hemsworth.

Chris Hemsworth We adopted TomTom Hiddleston I'm an Honorary Hemsworth

And Had a Sleepover on MTV After-Hours

Tom Hiddleston Pillow Fight

Should Josh Horowitz ever want to retire from this gig, Kim and I gladly volunteer as tributes.

Tom Hiddleston MTV After Hours Ever Seen Chris Hemsworth Naked

Tom Hiddleston MTV After Hours Yes

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Eleven Reasons We Love the Eleventh Doctor

Posted by Kim

Well, here we are…the eve of Matt Smith’s regeneration and our goodbye to the Eleventh Doctor (okay, fine, he’s really the Twelfth Doctor, but he’ll always be known as Eleven).  This is our first regeneration as Whovians and we’re not at all ready for the emotions that it is going to bring.  While Sage and I would both identify David Tennant as “our” doctor, we both hold Matt Smith in very high esteem and we would be remiss if we did not pay tribute to him and what he has brought to Doctor Who.

We’ve watched Matt mature both physically (just LOOK at his little baby face in the first episodes of series 5) and as an actor over the course of his tenure as the Doctor but one quality he has always brought to his performance is the old man in a young body.   He’s truly an old soul, and you see it in his eyes, not matter how much flailing around he does with his young body.  And oh…the flailing.  Matt brought a truly unique physicality to the role with the way he would use his lanky frame and gangly limbs, earning the loving nickname of the “drunk giraffe“.  Matt brought a true joie de vivre to the Doctor, but also brought a true gravitas and darkness.  While not as outwardly self loathing as the Tenth Doctor, when Eleven got dark he got DARK.  Describing him as “the one who forgets” in “The Day of the Doctor” was a perfect description of him.  He uses his humor and intellect and enthusiasm to cover up his pain and hatred of himself…but you can often catch it just beneath the surface.  It’s a wonderfully complex performance and Peter Capaldi has some big shoes to fill (though I am incredibly confident he is up to the task).

Rather than select our Eleven favorite episodes, we decided to pick our favorite moments of the Eleventh Doctor.  Some are full episodes (because, let’s face it, “The Eleventh Hour” is pretty flawless) and some are scenes.  All are beloved.  Here they are, in chronological order…

1) “The Eleventh Hour”

Back when I was binge-watching Doctor Who for the first time, I only took a brief break between “The End of Time” and “The Eleventh Hour”.  Sure, I was emotionally traumatized by losing David Tennant, but Sage and I were marathoning at the same time, and she was ahead of me.  No time to mourn…it was time for Matt Smith.  Luckily, “The Eleventh Hour” is a perfect introduction episode.  I was IMMEDIATELY endeared to Matt Smith during the whole Fish Fingers and Custard sequence with Young Amelia Pond.  He had such a wonderful chemistry with little Amelia and I knew that even though he was different…he was still The Doctor.  Slightly more batty and mouthy…but still The Doctor.

And if you weren’t won over by that scene, we then had Eleven’s confrontation with the Atraxi.  A hologram montage of all the past Doctors played, and Matt burst through David Tennant’s face, with Murray Gold’s score swelling gloriously in the background, and said “Hello.  I’m the Doctor.  Basically…run.” with the most delightful little smirk on his baby face.  And then as he picked his now iconic tweed and bow tie he said “To hell with the raggedy.  Time to put on a show.”

“Yes,” I said approvingly.  “Yes, you ARE The Doctor.”

2) “Now then, Rory.  We need to talk about your fiancée.” – “Vampires of Venice”

Obviously one of the most defining relationships of Eleven’s era was his relationship with Amy Pond and Rory Williams (Pond).  Maybe the Doctor learned his lesson from what happened with Rose and Mickey…maybe he just never had romantic feelings for Amy (SORRY I DON’T UNDERSTAND YOU ELEVEN/AMY SHIPPERS) but the Doctor always respected the Amy/Rory relationship, even if he never fully understood it most of the time.

The Doctor may have taken the mickey (pun not intended) out of Rory a lot of the time, especially in the early years, but he still showed him respect.  That is quite evident in the fact that after Amy kissed him, he went straight to Rory to tell him.  True, bursting out of the cake at his stag party to tell Rory that his fiancée kissed him probably was not the BEST choice (let’s all take a moment to appreciate the way Rory’s face fell when the Doctor told him), but it was still done with the best of intentions. And THEN he invited Rory to come along with them, which is something he NEVER did for Mickey.  Mickey had to ASK (well, demand really) to come.

While The Doctor and Rory’s relationship never had the closeness or the magical quality that the relationship with Amy had (I mean…how could it? He met her as a child and was her “imaginary friend”) that doesn’t mean that it wasn’t a deep relationship.  While wary of each other initially they grew to have a great affection and ultimately respect for each other.  Part of that had to grow out of the affection that Matt and Arthur had for each other in real life, but it is also a sign of the Eleventh Doctor’s desire for love and companionship.

3) “There’s only one person in the Universe that hates me as much as you do.” – “Amy’s Choice”

 

Like I said in the beginning, underneath all the quips and excitement, you could still see the self-loathing underneath.  In fact, I would argue that the Eleventh Doctor is even more self-loathing than his New Who predecessors because he spend so much time HIDING it.  It makes the moments where it comes out, like in the interaction with the Dream Lord, all the more powerful.

4) “Vincent and the Doctor”

“The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and… bad things. The good things don’t always soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don’t necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant. And we definitely added to his pile of good things.”

We have said it many many many times before, but if you are not WEEPING at the end of “Vincent and the Doctor”, it is very possible that you are completely dead inside.  Between Vincent getting to see the museum and hear the curator rhapsodize on the impact of his life’s work to Amy discovering the Sunflowers painting and seeing that it said “For Amy”, it is truly one of the finest and most moving episodes of Matt Smith’s era.  And Eleven’s “Pile of Good Things” speech is one of his finest moments and one of my favorite quotes of the entire series.

5) The Doctor at Amelia’s bedside – “The Big Bang”

“It’s funny. I thought if you could hear me, I could hang on somehow. Silly me. Silly old Doctor. When you wake up you’ll have a mom and dad. And you won’t even remember me. Well. You’ll remember me a little. I’ll be a story in your head. That’s okay. We’re all stories in the end. Just make it a good one, eh? ‘Cause it was, you know. It was the best. The daft old man who stole a magic box and ran away. Did I ever tell you that I stole it? Well I borrowed it. I was always going to take it back. Oh that box. Amy, you’ll dream about that box. It’ll never leave you. Big and little at the same time. Brand new and ancient and the bluest blue ever. And the times we had, eh? Woulda had. Never… had. In your dreams they’ll still be there. The Doctor and Amy Pond. And the days that never came. The cracks are closing. But they can’t close properly ’til I’m on the other side. I don’t belong here anymore. I think I’ll skip the rest of the rewind. I hate repeats. Live well. Love Rory. Bye bye, Pond.”

And then there’s THIS.  Say what you want to about Steven Moffat as a showrunner (and Lord knows I could say plenty) but the man can write a monologue that can wreck you with feels in a way that very few writers can.  The sheer affection Moffat has for Doctor Who comes through in every aspect of this monologue.  It’s magical.  And Matt Smith knocks it out of the park.  To me, this speech and this scene is the defining moment of the Eleventh Doctor.

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The Greatest Performances of 2013

Posted by Kim and Sage

2013 was a great year in entertainment.  When Sage and I started discussing what we wanted to do for our year-end coverage, we were originally going to limit it to our top 20 moments of television.  That is until we started MAKING our list anyway, and our daily gChats devolved into caps-locked shouting at each other.  “WHAT ABOUT BROADCHURCH?” “WE CAN’T SPOIL IT, SAGE!!  SOME OF OUR FRIENDS HAVE NOT WATCHED IT.”  “BUT BROADCHURCH, KIM!” “SAGE, SHOULD WE DISCUSS OUR FAVORITE MOVIES?!”

You get the picture.

Our compromise was to pick our favorite individual performances of the year.  We thought it would be a great way to honor shows and movies we loved this year, but don’t necessarily talk about very often on the site (which is why you won’t see performances from any of the shows we regularly recap, save for one).  They are listed in no particular order, because if we were going to rank them, Sage and I would STILL be arguing over it.  Enjoy!

— Kim

1) Olivia Colman – Broadchurch

I cannot stress this strongly enough. SPOILERS AHEAD. SPOILERS WITH A CAPITAL EVERYTHING.

Up until the very last episode of the first season of Broadchurch, Olivia Colman’s role seemed to be that of D.S. Ellie Miller, the long suffering officer passed over for an overdue promotion for an outsider with a tarnished record. Ellie Miller, who served her community as a PART of it, at odds with Alec Hardy, who was just looking into windows. Then the killer was revealed and it was shocking and obvious at the same time. Broadchurch was a phenomenon because it tapped into the fears that keep us up at night. How much do we really know about the people we interact with every day? What are we missing that might be going on right in our own homes? Ellie was the conduit for that fear, and Colman’s performance in the finale is shattering.

Let me just remind you that Olivia is primarily known for her work in COMEDY. (What is it with British actors and their ability to obliterate the lines between genres?) Try to remember that when you watch the scene where Alec tells Ellie that her Joe killed Danny, a scene which showrunner Chris Chibnall claims the actors never rehearsed. We see her horror. We see her complete, full-body rejection of this information – it simply can’t be true – but also that part deep inside her that accepts it. That knows Joe well enough to know, somewhere, that this was always a possibility. It’s devastatingly visceral.

We don’t know yet if the American adaptation Gracepoint will follow the same plotline as Broadchurch. Either way, even Emmy-winner Anna Gunn had better bring her A-game to have a hope of snugly fitting into Colman’s shoes.

–Sage

2) The Ensemble of 12 Years A Slave

Because of how my flight pricing worked out, I was in Los Angeles an extra day after CommuniCon 2 ended.  Thankfully, so were my friends Gillian and Sarah, so we spent the day in LA together and ended up going to the movies.  I had my mind set on seeing 12 Years a Slave, so even when Gillian said, “Oh look, Enough Said is playing at the same time!”, I used my powers of persuasion.  Two and a half hours later, we emerged with tear-stained faced, with Sarah exclaiming, “Thanks a LOT, Kim.”

#sorrynotsorry

There is not a weak link in the 12 Years a Slave ensemble, which is led by a steely Chiwetel Ejiofor, who could very easily be taking home an Oscar this March.  A previously unknown Lupita Nyong’o is SO devastating as the much abused Patsey there were audible sobs when Epps (Michael Fassbender has never been more chilling) tied her to a pole and forced Solomon to whip her.  Add in top-notch performances from Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Sarah Paulson, Alfre Woodard, and Brad Pitt (though I did chuckle at the fact that he played Solomon’s savior, considering that his Production Company Plan B was attached to the film) and you have an ensemble that I can’t imagine will be denied the “Best Cast in a Motion Picture” award at the SAGs.  The acting and the film is brilliant and it’s brutal.  I loved it and I never want to see it again.

— Kim

3) Jane Fonda – The Newsroom

The YouTube clip I just watched of this scene is titled “Jane Fonda turns awesome” and ain’t that the damn truth? The Jerry Dantana storyline made The Newsroom into the show it WANTED to be. With ACN united against a common enemy, Sorkin was able to find the heart of it. And while Leona and Reese were weak-sauce villains in season one, their emergence as allies made their characters much more vital.

And this is the scene where we find out just how on board Leona is. Jane Fonda was handed the best material she’s ever had on this show and a fab-u-lous gown and she picked those up and ran like hell. She rants about missing the Skyfall premiere and for Dantana coming into her “hizzy” and ruining their reputations; proclaims that she’s ready for battle because she’s “got some kick-ass courtroom outfits” and when confronted with the truth that the ACN team has lost the trust of the people, gives Will, Charlie, and Mac one three-word directive: “GET IT BACK.” Daniel Craig should be so lucky.

–Sage

4) Jennifer Lawrence – Catching Fire

Jennifer Lawrence was GOOD in The Hunger Games.  She is ASTONISHING in Catching Fire.   The growth she has made as an actress between the two films is mind-blowing (and I am sure much is owed to David O. Russell, because don’t EVEN get me started on her performance in American Hustle.)  What is the most evident in JLaw’s performance is the extent to which she KNOWS Katniss…that she IS KATNISS.   The film opens and closes with tight shots of Katniss’ face, which really drills home that this is HER movie and that we are experiencing everything through her eyes.  And those eyes and the emotions they convey…the rage, the fear, the weariness…they are all there with just a subtle shift, and usually without even saying a word.  Katniss’ agony in the arena is palpable, her screams come from the most gut-wrenching of places.  I was exhausted after the movie, so I can’t imagine what it was like for Jennifer.

I’ve been saying this a lot lately…but she is only twenty-three, and is already THIS GOOD.  I have a feeling she’ll be appearing on this list for many years to come.

— Kim

5) Paul McGann – The Night of the Doctor

Whatever trepidation Whovians had about the 50th Anniversary Special was all but wiped away by the prequel mini-episode, “The Night of the Doctor.” The plot of the vignette was kept tightly under wraps, and that goodness.  Because that moment where the camera lands on PAUL FREAKING MCGANN (looking FINE, I might add) and he says, “I’m a Doctor. Probably not the one you were expecting.” was worth all the screaming and flailing it caused around the world. Sandshoes and Chinny, someone swooped in overnight and stole your fandom. What you gonna do about it?

And this Eighth Doctor was a far cry from the Eight we last saw on a motorcycle with Grace Holloway in the kitschy 1996 TV movie. (As I like to call it, Doctor Who and the Secret of the Ooze.) He’s bone-tired, but putting on a brave, adventurer’s face for Cass, his potential companion. When her reaction to him is one of fear and even hatred, he can’t keep up the Doctor act anymore.

McGann’s performance provides us with a solid link between Eight and the War Doctor, a mental leap that was difficult to make without seeing this war-torn, ravaged man.  And what a perfect promotion for Big Finish, who must have seen a huge uptick in downloads of their Eighth Doctor audio adventures. I know I’m eager for more.

–Sage

6) Sam Rockwell – The Way Way Back

The Way Way Back remains one of my top films of the year and one of the best acting ensembles of the year.  Out of a cast that includes National Treasure Allison Janney, Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Liam James, Maya Rudolph, Jim Rash, and Nat Faxon, we chose to spotlight Sam Rockwell’s performance as Duncan’s unlikely friend and mentor, Owen.  What made The Way Way Back so wonderful is the fact that Owen NEVER let Duncan down.  As Sage said in her original review of the film, we were waiting for Owen to let Duncan down the entire movie…because that’s what these sage and hero worshipped characters DO in these types of movies right?  So either Sage and I are incredibly cynical or The Way Way Back is refreshingly cynicism free…because that moment never came.  Rockwell’s performance is warm, goofy, and loveable.  It felt incredibly pure and not at all like a “performance”.  He just WAS Owen, and Owen is the BEST kind of people.  If you didn’t find yourself moved by the scene featured in the above gif, where Owen and Duncan have their ultimate heart to heart, you may want to check and see if you have a soul.  If you didn’t cheer when Owen stepped between Duncan and Trent, you may want to check and see if you have a heart.  And if you didn’t cry when Duncan ran back for one last hug…have someone call the morgue because you are dead.

— Kim

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“And the devil did indeed come in.” – Scandal Gift-Cap

A Philadelphia Story Hello friends and enemies

Scandal
Season 3, Episode 10: “A Door Marked Exit”
Posted by Sage

I hope you were sufficiently Poped last week, readers. Because “A Door Marked Exit” was this season’s winter finale and we won’t be reunited with our associates until FEBRUARY. After the breathless action of last week – including that final shocking scene – this week’s episode slowed down (as much as Scandal EVER slows down) to show us the repercussions of everyone’s actions. And, in the process, it gave us some of the show’s finest monologues and performances. (JEFF PERRY. JEFF. PERRY.)

Let’s savor 2013’s final gif-cap together, shall we?

“You screwed his husband. That was poisoned fruit. And he will not rest until he has vengeance, YOU IDIOT.” I am the only one who’s still surprised that James and Douglas ACTUALLY did it? I thought for sure they were just setting up the photos to teach Cyrus a lesson.

Jake and Amir Oh snap

“So I sold my soul to you and I propped you up and I played second fiddle and I smiled at every dinner and rally and fish fry and look where I got you.” Daniel is exhausted and totally done with playing the doting husband to “shrill Sally.” This will not end well.

Home Along Never Want to see you again

“The devil came in. I lost myself and now I’m going to burn in the flames.” Please, Sally. As if anyone in this White House ever faces any consequences.

Dowager Countess Don't be so defeatist

Cyrus is so overwhelmed that he pukes in Sally’s bathroom. At least we know his stomach has a conscience.

Buffy Grossed Out

“I put a tracking chip where your tooth should be.” To those of you who ship this, still…you crazy. I support your right to ship what you wanna ship, but you should at least know that.

Poor social skills Silver Linings

“You snooze, you lose.” Brian McKenzie’s character is SO CONFUSING to me. Obviously, he’s a complete sociopath. But does he have real feelings for Quinn?

Chris Evans Oops

Quinn yanks the tracking chip out of her mouth. There’s blood everywhere. She’s a bad bitch.

The Mindy Project There there

“That’s a matter of national security, and it’s above your pay grade, Mr. President.” Every time Fitz gets told, a White House intern gets its wings.

Damn Damn Damn burger

“Daniel Douglas died of a heart attack.” I feel like we’re gonna regret this lie at some point.

New Girl Run Away From Your Problems

“I put parts of my body inside of your parts of your body and I’m very generous when…” TELL ME MORE ABOUT THIS, DAVID.

A Damn Good Shag Benedict

“I’m right here, ya’ll.” If I remember correctly, this Harrison’s ONLY LINE in this episode. SHONDA. WHAT DO YOU HAVE AGAINST HARRISON?

Scrubs I Miss You So Much

“Nobody touches him.” Luckily, the holy ghost steps into Sally right at the last moment she has to perpetrate this scheme. Looks like hellfire is staved off, just for a bit.

500 Days of Summer I really do hope

“God has smiled on us, Cyrus.” And Cyrus is like, “Mellie, we in danger, girl.”

Brokeback Mountain Goddamn Bitch

“The devil came in…WE CAME IN. Ergo, we are the devil. I am actually…the devil.” After everything he’s done, THIS is Cyrus’s existential crisis moment.

Tina Fey I'm a cold hearted bitch

Rowan wakes up in some dark recesses of the Pentagon. And Fitz is like….

The World's End Wilkommen

“I’m screwing her, you know. Your daughter. The things I could tell you…about the way she tastes. She’s quite a girl. Talented.” FUCK. THIS. MAN.

Just Jack Excuse Me Rudeness

“You’re funny. You’re a funny man. Or should I say, ‘boy.’ You’re a boy.” Ahhhhhhh, YES. Time to drop some truth bombs on the WORST PRESIDENT/WORST HUMAN ever.

Just Making an Observatio

“For you, it’s always summertime and the living is easy and your daddy is rich and your momma’s good looking.” Joe Morton is destroying this.

Adventure Time It's so beautiful

“I have fought and scrapped for every inch of ground I’ve walked on.”

Preach

“I MADE that happen. You cried yourself to sleep because daddy hurt your feelings.” I may have started clapping.

It's Always Sunny laughing

“You spoiled, entitled, ungrateful little brat.” MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ME.

Game of Thrones No Cure for Being

“You could talk about what a great lay she is to try to get a response from me all you want, but guess what? I am ACTUALLY, quite literally above your pay grade.” *Doing Peanuts dance in front of television*

Dazed and confused that's what I'm talkin about

“You are always going to be Senator Grant’s disappointing boy Fitz. SHE is always going to be the FORMIDABLE Olivia Pope. Don’t use the person that I made to make you into a man. You’re a BOY.” This is everything. Everything. Thank you, Queen Shonda, for this moment.

HIMYM Almighty Five

“You disappoint me as a suitor for my daughter’s hand.” BOOM.

Harry Potter Standing Ovation

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The Top 20 Television Moments of 2013 – Part Two

2013: The Year of Binge Watching and Drinking

Posted by Kim and Sage

When Sage and I began talking about doing a year-end post on our favorite television moments, we KNEW, despite my love for being ruthless and definitive, we would never be able to keep it to ten.  Hell, we consider the fact that we narrowed the list down to 20 a feat of epic proportions.  We posted our first ten, in no particular order, last week, so here’s our final ten moments.

Also, many of our top moments also appeared on Entertainment Weekly‘s list of great television moments of the year.  Hey EW, stop spying on us and just give us jobs already would you?

— Kim

11) Stefon Gets His Man – Saturday Night Live

Stefon This wedding has everything

I genuinely and devotedly ship Stefon and Seth Meyers. Bill Hader’s gay club kid/tour guide is one of the funniest characters to come out of the last ten years of SNL, but this love is not a joke, y’all. So imagine my delight when the show gave these two a sincerely romantic final chapter in Hader’s last episode.

It was a running joke in the Update sketch that Stefon was always in pursuit of “Seth Meyers.” (“I’m taking my girlfriend to Mexico.” “To kill her?”) And Seth was never grossed out by it – more bemused by his relentlessness. Stefon’s appearances were built on the sturdy base of Hader and John Mulany’s genius imaginings of New York’s nightmare clubs (“This club has everything. Charts, graphs, Powerpoint, a guy who still thinks Jamba Juice is good for you. And if you liked Russell Crowe in Les Miserables, you might want to hear Jasper the gorilla pass a kidney stone!”) But it was the chemistry between the guest and the anchor that brought Stefon to another level. Seth called Stefon “buddy” and encouraged him and was always glad to see him and kept asking him back to give these recommendations even though he knew they’d be useless to tourists. Well, the head canon just writes itself.

What I’m saying is that SNL essentially ended Stefon’s run with a sweet piece of fanfic. Having Anderson Cooper cameo as Stefon’s groom was genius, and a tip of the hat to wardrobe and props for packing the pews with Furkel, Wario Batali, Jewish Dracula Sidney Appelbaum, and the rest of Stefon’s underground friends. (EW ran a nice reflection by Hader on the conception and making of the sketch.) But when Seth Meyers pounded on that church glass in the only decent Graduate parody I’ve seen since The Simpsons, it was a real “MY SHIP IS BECOMING CANON” moment.

We’ve been missing Hader all season, and I don’t even want to talk about losing Seth. But at least when they’re both long gone, we can still imagine them together, arguing every night over whether they should stay in and watch The Daily Show or go out to Taste and dance the night away to a set by DJ Baby Bok Choy. Mazel tov, you crazy kids.

–Sage

12) The reveal of the War Doctor – Doctor Who

2013 was a hell of a year to be a Whovian, so it was a difficult task to choose just one moment of Doctor Who to spotlight in this post.   We wrote extensively about our feels on the 50th Anniversary special “The Day of the Doctor”.  We could have very easily named the meeting of Ten and Eleven as our moment.  Heck we could have made the fact that the “moment” manifested itself as Rose Tyler as our moment.  But none of those moments would have been possible without the last few seconds of the series 7 finale “The Name of the Doctor”.

The second half of Series Seven tended to be a bit frustrating (not Series Six level frustration, but frustration none the less) but “The Name of the Doctor” FINALLY delivered on all the teases Moffat had been hinting at the entire season.  We found out WHY Clara was “The Impossible Girl” and as Sage excellently put it in her recap, “it turns out that Clara IS just a regular human girl who did an extraordinary thing. And it’s pretty bad ass.”  We had a LOVELY and heartbreaking goodbye (WE HOPE) to River Song.  And any episode that features the Trio of Strax, Madame Vastra, and Jenny is a delight.  It was a cracking good episode in general…and then in the final seconds Steven Moffat served up one of the biggest (if not THE biggest) “WHAT THE FUCK” moments of modern Doctor Who history.  There was a Doctor WE NEVER KNEW ABOUT.  A Doctor that when Eleven came face to face with him a look of sheer horror and revulsion passed across his face.  And then…credits.  See you in six months, Whovians.

Well played, Moffat, you bastard.

— Kim

13) Danny’s Dance Routine – The Mindy Project

 

I have a serious problem.

His name is Daniel Mussolini Castellano.

The Mindy Project has come a long way since Kim posted her less-than-enthused review of early Season 1. And a good chunk of that progress is thanks to the evolving relationship between Danny and Mindy Lahiri. We’ve had just about enough of that “I act like I hate you because I reaaaallly like you” thing, thank you very much. They’re SO much better as allies and unlikely best friends. Instead of living in a constant cycle of Mindy behaving badly and Danny chiding her (Admit that you would have slugged Mr. Knightley a few times.), they’re now on equal footing – both fucked up, but in different ways.

The rest of the ensemble characters are still fairly thin – Max from Happy Endings is playing straight Max from Happy Endings – but Danny and Mindy are fully formed. They have weight. Every time the show lets us in on another one of Danny’s quirks, it’s like, “duh doy!” Of course, Danny sweats a lot when he plays in his divorced mens basketball league at the YMCA (“Single and cool! Single and cool!”). Of course, Danny’s bookshelves are composed mostly of John Grisham and the Jason Bourne series. Of course, Danny is friends with his toll booth driver, because he’s got a Springsteen-related daydream of the working man. Of course, Danny calls him Mom “Ma,” and can’t stop telling his brother that he has a “perfect face.” Of course, Danny thinks it’s pointless to spend his hard-earned money on useless tchotchkes for Secret Santa.

But we didn’t get to see where Danny Castellano REALLY lives until “Christmas Party Sex Trap.”

During one of my many, MANY rewatches of this moment, I dared myself to stay completely still.

It’s impossible. This act demands a full-body response.

He rolls up his shirtsleeves (unf) while telling Mindy that he picked “Try Again” for her present because she used to be obsessed with it, and “it was the first thing that ever really annoyed” him about her – basically confessing that everything she does is something worth remembering. And then he launches into a committed, smooth and hot as all hell version of the REAL choreography from the Aaliyah video. When he got home from work, Danny Castellano watched that video over and over again, practicing in the mirror until it was perfect. Are you dead yet? Well if not, here comes that heart-stopping smile when he does the “dirt off your shoulder” move (he’s so happy to make her happy) and a tender brush of his palm on her face to finish you off.

Mindy’s expressions shift. She’s bemused at first, then surprised and grateful, and finally, because she has a vagina and a beating heart, pretty turned on.* I know that plenty of fans were frustrated that Danny and Mindy didn’t officially happen in this episode, but then again, didn’t they? We’ve just moved from the playful flirtation phase to the unrequited love stage and that’s THE BEST PART. Let’s not rush it. Danny’s going to brush himself off and try again, and I can’t wait to see what his next move is.

–Sage

P.S. Though, after watching this, a number of straight guys I know presented with a confusion that was not at all unpleasant.

14) “One ticket to Farhampton, please.” – How I Met Your Mother

It was a moment eight years in the making.  For eight years How I Met Your Mother had given us tiny glimpses of the woman who would become Mrs. Ted Mosby.  An ankle.  A body whose face is obscured by an ever-present yellow umbrella.  The back of a head as Ted delivers gut punching speech about how he will meet her 45 days from now.  But never a face.  We didn’t think we would EVER see a face until the moment Ted came face to face with his future bride.

So when the season 8 finale “Something New” was concluding with a musical montage of all the gang beginning their journey to the Farhampton Inn for Barney and Robin’s wedding and we saw a super cute pair of brown boots with a yellow umbrella, I thought that would be it.  And then we were shown an entire shot of her from behind, revealing the mother to be a super cute and petite brunette.  I gasped.  That was the most we had ever seen of her.  And then the person in from of her stepped aside…and we saw her face.  I screamed for many reasons.  I screamed because I KNEW who that actress was!  It was Cristin Milioti, fresh off her stint as “Girl” in Broadway’s Once.  SHE WAS THE FREAKING MOTHER OMG.  Mainly though, I screamed because I couldn’t believe we finally SAW her.  In that one moment, How I Met Your Mother flipped its endgame.  We the audience knew who she was…and she couldn’t be more perfect.  The final season of HIMYM has been a mixed bag so far, but one thing is certain: whenever the Mother is on-screen, the show is invigorated.  There could have been no one else for our Ted Mosby than this woman.  I can’t wait for him to meet her.

— Kim

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Breaking Down the Golden Globe Nominations

Posted by Kim

I have a confession to make.  Yeah, yeah The Oscars are considered the “Super Bowl” of Awards shows, but The Golden Globes tend to be my favorite of all the awards shows out there.  Maybe it’s because they celebrate both film and TV, meaning that many more of my favorite people are in the room.  Maybe it’s because they split the movie awards into Comedy and Drama, giving more films and performances the chance to be honored.  Maybe it’s because out of all the awards bodies, the Globes are the ones most likely to think outside the box and honor new shows (they were the first champion of Mad Men after all).  Maybe it’s because that many celebrities + free-flowing champagne = the potential for all sorts of shenanigans.

Wait.  I KNOW it’s because of the free-flowing champagne induced shenanigans.

The nominations for the 2014 Golden Globes were announced this morning and I found myself faced with a peculiar feeling.  And that feeling was…happiness and excitement.  Definitely not one I am used to feeling on Nomination Days.  I’m used to feeling RAGE.  Perhaps I am growing less grumpy in my old age or perhaps the fact of the matter is that The Globes got WAY more right this year than they did wrong.  Sure…there were some moments that had me perplexed (NO MAD MEN), but there were more moments that had me squealing with joy (MONICA POTTER Y’ALL!).  Let’s break down the categories, shall we?

Best Television Series — Drama

Breaking Bad

Downton Abbey

The Good Wife

House of Cards

Masters of Sex

The shocker here is the exclusion of awards darling and winner of this category for the past 2 years Homeland.  I’ve only watched the first nine episodes of the show, so obviously I am behind, but I have really heard NOTHING good about Season Three.  So props to the HFPA for not just sticking to the shows they have honored in the past just cause they are the trendy ones.  Mad Men is out of this category for the third year in a row (Again SO WEIRD because like I said…the HFPA were the first ones to reward this show), so while I am MAD, I am not surprised.  Thrilled to see The Good Wife here because this season has been AMAZING.  But really the favorite in this category HAS to be Breaking Bad for its masterful final season.  Though House of Cards could be a spoiler if the HFPA is feeling tricksy.

Best Performance by an Actor In A Television Series — Drama

Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan
Michael Sheen, Masters of Sex
Kevin Spacey, House of Cards
James Spader, The Blacklist

This Category is where the HFPA REALLY shook things up, with only ONE returning nominee from last year, in the form of Bryan Cranston, who lost last year to Homeland‘s Damian Lewis.  This makes me quite happy, as it really irks me when the same people get nominated every year because it feels like the nominators don’t even WATCH submission tapes (LOOKING AT YOU SAG AND EMMY).

I called it the moment that The Blacklist premiered…James Spader would get a Golden Globe nomination for his performance.  So you can imagine I felt quite smug when his name was called this morning.  I just started watching Masters of Sex and while I think Bill Masters is KIND OF the worst, I think Michael Sheen does brilliant work.  The nomination for Liev Schreiber is the only one that strikes me as ODD, but the Globes ALWAYS have at least one WTF nominee.  Who is usually a famous person.  BUT JON HAMM THOUGH.  I guess I am resigned to the fact that his awards days are over.

Bryan Cranston has to be the favorite here for his brilliance in Breaking Bad, but watch out for Spader.  He has an extensive history with the Globes and they LOVE HIM.  I would not at ALL be surprised if he walked away with the trophy.

Best Performance by an Actress In A Television Series — Drama

Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black
Taylor Schilling, Orange is the New Black
Kerry Washington, Scandal
Robin Wright, House of Cards

With two-time winner for Homeland Claire Danes out-of-the-way (seriously guys, they must have HATED season 3), I really feel like this is ANYBODY’S to win.  Once again, the Globes did a clean sweep of this category, with only Juliana Margulies returning from last year’s crop.  I could hear screams of joy from my friends all over the world when Tatiana Maslany’s name was called.  I PROMISE I will watch at least SOME of Orphan Black before the Globes so I will GET IT.  I am QUITE surprised that Taylor Schilling is the sole nominee from the buzzy Orange Is The New Black, considering that it is a show I really thought the Globes would embrace.  I’m very sad that Lizzy Caplan didn’t get in for Masters of Sex, but this is a TOUGH category.

My pick to win is Kerry Washington.  If there is any organization that would embrace a show as crazy as Scandal it is this one.  Plus Kerry has movie star cred, which the HFPA loves and oh yeah…she’s fucking brilliant as Olivia Pope.  She’ll need to watch her back for Maslany, but for now, I give this one to the Gladiator.  It’s handled.

Best Television Series — Comedy Or Musical

The Big Bang Theory
Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Girls
Modern Family
Parks and Recreation

AT LONG LAST PARKS AND RECREATION GETS A NOMINATION FOR SERIES.  YOU GUUUUUUUUUYYYYYYYS.

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you KNOW how we feel about Parks and Rec.  Will it win?  Probably not.  But it got recognized and we’ll take it.  Yes, I yawn at the inclusion of The Big Bang TheoryModern Family is always a given in this category.  And the HFPA loves Girls, as it won this category last year.  And I imagine it will win again.  But with the exclusion of Glee and nomination for Parks and the SUPER surprise nomination for newbie Brooklyn 99, there will be no table flipping gifs here today.

Best Performance by an Actress In A Television Series — Comedy Or Musical

Zooey Deschanel, New Girl
Lena Dunham, Girls
Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Amy Poehler, Parks And Recreation

WE WILL NOT REST UNTIL QUEEN AMY WINS A TROPHY FOR PLAYING LESLIE KNOPE.

*mic drop*

(Also, subbing in Edie Falco for Tina Fey and you have the EXACT same line-up as last year.  Lazy.)

Best Performance by an Actor In A Television Series — Comedy Or Musical

Jason Bateman, Arrested Development
Don Cheadle, House of Lies
Michael J. Fox, The Michael J. Fox Show
Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Andy Samberg, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Aside from the surprise nomination for Andy Samberg, this category bores me.  And the nomination for Michael J. Fox is a bit of a joke to me.  Unless the show has MAGICALLY gotten better.  Next please.

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The Top 20 Television Moments of 2013 – Part One

Posted by Kim and Sage

The twelve months since we celebrated our favorite television moments of 2012 have flown by, possibly because we spend most of that time watching television. The time has come again to revisit the surprise guest stars, transcendent performances, and surprisingly skillful dance numbers that had us laughing, crying, and texting each other, “PLEASE tell me you just saw that.”

In no particular order, here’s the first half of our top 20 television moments in 2013. Look for part two later this week.

1) The Red Wedding – Game of Thrones

While these 20 moments that made our year in TV aren’t ranked in any way, there’s a reason why The Red Wedding came to our collective mind first. And that reason is that it was a trauma from which we’ll never recover.

I haven’t read any of the George R.R. Martin novels, because I just don’t have the stamina. (Or the knack for mentally cataloging hundreds of almost identical names. I still refer to most characters as “that guy.”) So every death and double-cross on Game of Thrones comes to me as a surprise. And “The Rains of Castamere” ended with a surprise of the very, very worst kind.

MY BABY.

I’m not saying that Robb and his party shouldn’t have been just a little more on top of things. The situation with Walder Frey was about as stable as a grenade, and they went waltzing into that banquet hall like a good 3/4s of the Seven Kingdoms DIDN’T want to see every last Stark dead. But while a sense of doom pervaded the wedding feast, it couldn’t have prepared anyone – even people who read the book – for the brutality they were about to witness. There was no holding back – this was television designed to shock and unsettle. (Fun fact: “The Rains of Castamere” was directed by David Nutter, who helmed 15 episodes of The X-Filesincluding “Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose,” “Ice,” and the “Duane Barry” trilogy – all on our Top 15 list.)

And it unsettled the hell outta me. ROBB STARK WAS MY ONE TRUE KING OF WESTEROS. He was my horse in the race. My favorite character. My Marry in the M/F/K of Robb Stark, Jon Snow, and Jamie Lannister. And didn’t it just make sense for him to avenge his father and bring his family to glory? Of course it did. And that’s exactly why Martin took him out.

I had a crisis of faith. Why even bother anymore? Why keep on watching a show when a character so central, so beloved, yes, so ridiculously sexy can be struck down in an instant? Of course, for most Game of Thrones fans, that’s exactly the reason.

–Sage

2) Nick and Jess Kiss – New Girl

Some kisses are destined for the annals of television history.  Ross and Rachel at Central Perk.  Ben and Leslie at the end of “Road Trip”.  Jeff and Annie in “Pascal’s Triangle Revisited”.  And in “Cooler”, New Girl gave us another one for the books.

In the weeks building up to the airing of “Cooler” the crafty promo department at Fox had teased that the long simmering sexual tension between Nick and Jess would come to head during a game of Strip True American, where they would be forced to kiss.  We even SAW Jess, in a lovely purple and white bra, begging Nick to just DO it already.  I had the feeling all along that no kiss would come out of that moment…it was much too obvious right?  So while I wasn’t surprised that no kiss happened, I DID fall off my couch when a panic filled Nick shouted “NOT LIKE THIS!!!”.  Meaning…as we had long suspected…Nick HAD thought about kissing Jess, and what’s MORE is that he wanted it to be SPECIAL.

After that highly charged moment, the episode continued and we all believed that the New Girl writers had faked us out once again.  The last minutes of the show rolled around and Jess, in her bathrobe, and Nick, in his pajamas, said good night and looked at each other longingly.  And then.  AND THEEEEEEEEEEEEEEENNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN.

Nick Miller made his move, grabbing Jess and crushing her to him, and proceeded to kiss her in the way that you can only dream about.  Desperately.  Passionately.  GENTLY.  And then pulled back and said, “I meant something like that.”

And THAT, my dear readers, is how you do it.

— Kim

3) Ben and Leslie Get Married – Parks and Recreation

“I promised myself I was not going to cry tonight. And I have already broken that promise five times.” – Chris Traeger, also me.

Television weddings can often mean big obstacles and game-changing revelations meant to keep us guessing until (and sometimes after – I’m looking at you, “I take thee, Rachel.”) the couple goes down the aisle. But Ben and Leslie, you could put good money on. This was happening and it was just a question of how.

In pure Parks style, of course, with lots of laughs and a wide-open heart. Mike Schur leads a room of writers who have such affection for their characters. They would never throw any of them into a huge life event without hashing out every single detail. So from Jamm’s Grinchy sabotage to Ben and Chris’s teary best man moment to Ron finding himself wholly unable (and unwilling) to let Leslie get married without letting her know how much she means to him, “Leslie and Ben” represented the best of this show and these actors.

–Sage

4) Jennifer Lawrence at the Oscars

Queen Jennifer Lawrence was our runner-up for the Head Over Feels Entertainer of the Year (post with the winner to come soon!).  JLaw was everywhere this year, with her refreshing wit and self-deprecation (and constant need of food), but she was never more delightful than she was during Awards Season, the pinnacle of which was the 2013 Oscars, where she took home the Best Actress Trophy for her work in Silver Linings Playbook.

JLaw was the favorite to win going into the Oscars, having won both the Golden Globe and the SAG, so naturally, the cameras were on her for her reactions most of the night.  She didn’t disappoint.  She was giddy and silly and clearly having a blast being there.  We could probably do an entire Scandal gif-cap in Jennifer Lawrence gifs.  Challenge Accepted?

And then she WON.  And as she ascended the steps in her beautiful pale pink and white gown, every actress’ nightmare happened…she tripped.  And rather than burst into tears, like Anne Hathaway probably would have done, she laughed it off and dismissed her standing ovation as one of pity.  Let it also be noted that because she is a LUCKY BITCH, both Hugh Jackman and French Fox Jean DuJardin rushed to her aid when she fell.

And lest we forget…SHE IS ONLY 23.  We’ve got years and years of Jennifer being delightful, and I pray that she never changes.

— Kim

5) *N SYNC Reunite – VMAs

N Sync VMAs

Don’t care that it was only 90 seconds.

Don’t care that the guys looked a little rusty.

Don’t care that the reunion was overshadowed in the media by Miley Cyrus and her tongue.

Don’t care that the performance wasn’t an amuse-bouche for a new album or, heaven help me, a tour.

All I care about is that it happened. That Lance Bass, Chris Kirkpatrick, JC Chasez, Joey Fatone and Justin Timberlake got together, banged out a little dance rehearsal, and performed together as *N Sync. I’d been told not to hold my breath. Justin would never go back to that well. I don’t believe that MTV held him to the wall and made him do this to get the Moon Man; besides Taylor Swift and her “LOOK AT MEEEE” reactions, he was the most famous person in that theater. I accept it as a tribute to that part of his musical history, and it was satisfying – as it always is – to watch him recognize it. (When I saw the FutureSexLoveShow in Pittsburgh, he shouted out his “best friend Chris” in the audience before launching into “Gone.”) I’ve accepted that the window for *N Sync to return as they were is closed, but I’ll settle for frequent confirmation that still love each other.

— Sage

*N Sync backstage VMAs have a drink

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“YOLO, Quinn.” – Scandal Gif-Cap

Scandal 3 x 09

“YOLO”

Posted by Kim

As soon as The Sound of Music LIVE! ended and I sent Sage and Steven on their (slightly tipsy) way, I fired up ye olde DVR for that night’s episode of Scandal.  Whoo boy.  If I had been the least bit sleepy, which, let’s face it, after three hours of Carrie Underwood’s acting, I was…my LORD the first five minutes of “YOLO” woke me up in a hurry.  In fact it drove me to text Sage, who was probably still waiting for the N Train at my stop, “JESUS THE FIRST MINUTES OF SCANDAL!!”.

Sorry not sorry.

Enough talking.  To the gifs!

And the episode opens with Huck starting to torture Quinn.  So this is how it’s going to be?

“You’ve been a bad girl.” And Huck just became Annie Wilkes.

“I’m so sorry, because I am going to enjoy this.”  Is Huck always this overtly sexual when he is torturing people or am I looking through shattered shipper goggles?

OMG HE JUST LICKED HER!!!!!!!!!!!!

OHMYGOD GOING FOR HER TEETH. NOPE NOPE NOPE NOPE. 

“What’s that stupid thing you say? YOLO?”

“I’m asking you to abandon your beliefs for the greater good.” #politics

Olivia huddled in the corner over mommy.

Abby: “WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL THIS TIME?” Abby always speaks for the fandom.

CUTTING THE TRACKING DEVICE OUT.  Seriously this episode is trying to see how many ways it can terrify us and we are only in the first 20 minutes.

Oooh who is this lady friend of Harrison’s?  And can we get a storyline for them?

Momma’s fantasy life for Liv: “Because dentists come home for dinner.”

“Are you saying I’m NOT happy?”

“There’s only two people in this world that matter: Olivia and yourself.” Jake only speaks the truth, y’all.

“Must be nice letting other people fight your battles.”

Lest we forget, Quinn is naked and duct taped.  And now trying to free herself by breaking a glass and sawing said duct tape. 

James’ dapper velvet jacket.  The whole outfit really.

James is definitely fucking with Cyrus regarding Sally’s husband.

“Could have been a threesome.”

Brian McKenzie’s glee at killing people.

Two teeth gone…

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