‘Ship / Wrecked: Why DC is Better for TV ‘Shippers Than Marvel

Posted by Jaime

Editor’s Note: Everyone welcome Jaime Vazquez to Head Over Feels! Jaime is a stay-at-home dad, a long-time comic book nerd, and a huge fan of reading too much into TV shows. (Follow him on Twitter, or check out his interview with Community creator Dan Harmon here.)

The problem with being a TV ‘shipper in general is this: if a show’s writers are any good, they’ll come up with clever ways to show you that your favorite two characters are perfect together, and immediately follow that up with compelling reasons to keep them apart. Good writers make us root for amazing couples while simultaneously reminding us they can never be together. Even when they tell us the smart money is on the poison, they get us to bet on Romeo and Juliet.

In the world of TV superheroes, it’s no different: both Marvel’s and DC’s shows are filled with heart-meltingly good, yet doomed, romances. Jessica Jones and Luke Cage open up to each other, then have surprisingly hot superhero sex, but can never be together after he learns the truth of what she did while under Kilgrave’s spell. (Although if they did stay together, the show would have to move from Netflix to Cinemax pretty quickly.) Marvel’s Agent Carter has pitch-perfect flirty banter with Wilkes, who quickly becomes a ghost with no physical form. Even though we see how happy The Flash is with Patty Spivot, he cares too much to put her at risk, and has to break up with her. Perfect, but ill-fated loves: those are the rules of TV romance, and it’s the belief in those rules that allows us to forgive the writers each week, even if Barry really belongs with Patty. Because he does. (I won’t even go into that last kiss of theirs.)

It’s a funny thing, though, because Marvel and DC play by these rules in very different ways, ultimately making it a lot easier to be a ‘shipper on the DC side. In the DC TV universe, couples are granted brief happiness before our hearts are torn in two by their splitting up. In the Marvel TV universe, there’s no such thing as relationships that work, and we’re left with star-crossed lovers who are as miserable about their love lives as we are. (As others have noted, this is especially true on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)

Don’t get me wrong: both DC and Marvel TV give us plenty of opportunities to yell at our screens over romances that should happen but don’t. I’ll never forget the moment when Simmons was gobbled up into another dimension moments after agreeing to go to dinner with Fitz, or the Season 2 finale of Arrow revealing that Olly confessing his love to Felicity was a ruse (my wife stood up at that very moment, declaring as she left the room, “That’s it. This show is dead to me now.”).

But here’s where the writers of DC shows give us more compelling romances to watch: even when we know a relationship is headed for doom, they give the characters–and us watching–moments of happiness before things go haywire. Those brief respites of love make it easy for us to see why they care for each other, and give us ‘shippers moments to melt. On the Marvel side, it’s all build-up to a tragedy; on the DC side, there’s always an intermission of happiness before the inevitable end.

An interesting example is how both The Flash and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. had their romantic date scenes turn out this season. On The Flash: although his first date with Patty Spivot went comically bad, Barry’s temporary blindness somehow endeared him to her. Her figuring out that he was trying to hide his blindness made for a clever meet-cute, and by the end of the episode, I was more than ready for her to be the woman in his life (and honestly, Iris’s selfishness had really been bugging me by that point).

Compare that date scene with the date that Fitz set up for Simmons this year on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: their evening is marred by Simmons’ PTSD, and is awkward and sad from start to finish. Neither Fitz nor Simmons can acknowledge the elephants in the room: they care for each other, but it’s never going to work. The night ends in tears.

Like I said, I get the rules: neither couple can be together. The Flash and Patty eventually had their relationship end tragically, and Fitz and Simmons had to contend with her ex from another planet. But the quick few episodes we got of Barry and Patty together, as a couple, were so freaking cute that it was easier to get invested. She loved his wit, and he loved her gumption. (In contrast, it’s been two and a half years, and I’m still not certain what Fitz and Simmons like about each other. Even after this week’s declaration that they’re “starting over” in their relationship, if history tells us anything, it’s that it’s going to be a while before we see them kiss again.)

Some other stray examples worth pondering:

  • Roy and Thea on Arrow weren’t together long, but didn’t we all love how they rescued each other?
  • It was pretty obvious that Ronnie and Caitlin on The Flash weren’t going to be able to stay together for long after they resurrected him, but we got to see them reunited, and reconnecting.
  • An odd DC outlier: Supergirl has been friend-zoned by Jimmy Olsen. Nonetheless, my fingers are crossed.
  • Diggle and Lila are cute new parents. I know something bad is bound to happen to them soon, and even though I know that, I’m still going to curse at my TV when it does.
  • Hunter and Mockingbird from S.H.I.E.L.D. are getting their own show next year. I’m rooting for them as a couple (and they are married, after all), but their chemistry seems to rely on violence. We’re likely to get more Mr. and Mrs. Smith from their show than When Harry Met Sally. I’m not holding out out a lot of hope for getting any feels from them.
  • May and her ex-husband might have shown a spark to rekindle their romance…except for that whole him-being-a-serial-killing-monster thing.
  • An odd Marvel outlier: Wilson Fisk and Vanessa (from Daredevil) weaved a romantic origin story for the Kingpin. Their relationship, while dark and violent, feels authentic–she accepts him for who he is, and he is vulnerable to her only. As a show, Daredevil did an exceptional job letting their relationship bloom, getting the audience invested in them as they got invested in each other.

In the end, I’ll keep watching both universes, and I’ll be a relentless ‘shipper on both sides regardless of how tragically their relationships end. I’ll keep watching and ‘shipping, partly because I’m a geek, but mostly because it’s somehow comforting to think that even though we don’t get to live in a world where people have superpowers, we do get to live in a world where love can last (and doesn’t have to end tragically). I like to think we got the better end of the deal.

Fan Video Friday – Welcome Back TV!

please come back

Posted by Kim and Sage

Summer is fine. It’s the season of re-watches. Of catch-ups. Of Cat Deeley. But even with all the changes the medium has undergone over the last couple of decades, fall is still the best time to be a TV fan. We’re about to embark on the first of several premiere-heavy weeks, and the only emotion that can match our giddiness is ice cold fear that we won’t be able to keep up with it all.

The 2015 crop of pilots isn’t too promising. We’ll be lucky to get a regular timeslot or two out of it. But who cares, when so many old friends are returning? This week’s Fan Video Friday post is a tribute to the shows we’ve missed so thoroughly all summer and can’t wait to have back in front of our faces. Happy watching.

–Sage

“Everybody Wants to Rule the World” – How to Get Away With Murder

Sage: Like most things Lana Del Rey does, this cover is ridiculous and lacking in subtlety, which makes it an excellent choice for fan-vidding a soap-y melodrama like How To Get Away With Murder. The freshman season of the Shondaland legal thriller held back nothing…except most of the answers and all of Annaliese Keating’s motivations. I’m eager to see where Season 2 takes Professor Keating and her little murder minions, once the Lila Stangard case is put to bed.

Edit: this cover is actually by Lorde, but all opinions about Lana Del Ray still stand.

“Latch” – Jane the Virgin

Kim: No offense to Brett Dier’s Michael (he just wants a Feeling Award, you guys), but I am FIRMLY on board the S.S. Jafael and have been from the very beginning.  Yes, they’ve had their issues (mainly stemming from Rafael’s insecurities and fucked up family). Yes, they have different value systems and come from different worlds.  The odds are stacked against them, quite frankly, and their relationship will ALWAYS be hard work. But there’s no denying that when these two find themselves on the same page…magic happens. Much like Jane, I see the sparkles whenever these two share the screen. “Now I’ve got you in my space, I won’t let go of you. Got you shackled in my embrace, I’m latching on to you…”

“Worth It” – Flash and Arrow

Sage: WHEW, am I glad we picked a Flarrow ladies tribute video. Because I am not speaking to Stephen Amell right now.

Titular comic book heroes mostly come straight out of the text; it’s the development of compatriots and especially love interests that set a truly great superhero show apart from the just okay. The Flash and Arrow aren’t above criticism for how their female characters fit into the world around them (see: Season 1 Laurel and 2/3 of Season 1 Iris), but overall these ladies are serving up intelligence, sarcasm, and courage, and handily carrying their own storylines. P.S. I will always ship Barry and Felicity AND Barry and Caitlin a little bit, and nothing you do can stop me.

“Love Me Like You Do” – Nashville

Kim: In last week’s installment, we spotlighted the tortured OTP of Deacon and Rayna.  However, the reason I tune into Nashville every week is Juliette Barnes.  We’ve made it no secret that she’s our favorite.  I hate hate hated what they did to her at the end of last season (Super crazy postpartum depression pushing her marriage to the brink of destruction? Be a little more original, show.) so I am super curious how they are going to right Juliette’s path now that Hayden is back on the show full time.  Less Crazy Lady and more Bad Ass Country Diva, please and thank you.

“You and I” – The Mindy Project

Sage: OKAY, this video isn’t the newest Mindy and Danny video on the YouTubes. But think of it as capturing a particular moment in time, the hesitation right before the sparring partners figure not just that they’re crazy about each other but that it might be time to act on it, instead of boo-hooing about past loves gone wrong. Also, it’s to one of the greatest ballads in the One Direction discography and the Secret Santa hug hits right at Zayn’s legendary high note. Multi-sensory bliss.

“XO” – Sleepy Hollow

Kim: OH MY GOD I HAVE MISSED THESE TWO IDIOT FACES.

Season Two of Sleepy Hollow may have had its rough patches (HA) creatively but what never wavered was the fact that Tom Mison and Nicole Beharie are beautiful and that Abbie and Ichabod have all the eye sex and UST a viewer could want. We have a lot of changes coming in Season Three…a new showrunner, dead weight cut loose (bye Katrina and Henremy, we won’t miss you), and NOT dead weight cut loose (WHY FRANK WHY I DON’T UNDERSTAND).  But one thing will remain steadfast, no matter what: Ichabbie’s devotion to each other. Witness represent.

Also…for those of you who still care (and plenty of you do, judging by Twitter) a recap of “Tempus Fugit” IS coming your way next week.  I promise.

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“I thought we were going to have whiskey on this panel!” – SDCC 2015, Part III

Team BAMF: Bad Ass Major Feels

Team BAMF: Bad Ass Major Feels

Posted by Kim

By Saturday, we felt like SDCC pros. We were getting into all the panels we were wanting to see. We had scored the exclusive merchandise we had lusted after.  We had partied the PERFECT amount to where we didn’t feel like zombies the next day.  We were, in a word, killing it. Would Saturday proved to be as charmed of a day as the first two?  Read on to find out!

Walking the Exhibit Hall

We live at the convention center now.

We live at the convention center now.

After walking the now familiar route around the top floor of the convention hall (Me: “Let’s do a lap before we commit to a location”) to settle into the line for the Exhibit Hall, we had one goal in mind: getting to the Legendary Booth for a chance to win a ticket for the Crimson Peak signing (HIDDLES) later that afternoon. The autograph culture at SDCC is much different from the one at NYCC.  At NYCC, as long as you have the money and the willingness to stand in line, you can get the autograph you so desperately need.  Not all of the talent attending NYCC (especially your A-Listers) does the autograph booths, but if the object of your desire does do them, you can get your autograph for a sum ranging from 20 to upwards of 100 bucks.  (This also applies to paid photo-ops, also known as what currently decorates my kitchen walls, also known as that time Stephen Amell caught a bit of Sage’s side boob.)  At SDCC, all the autographs are free and the A-list talent DOES participate. The catch? It’s all based on a lottery system.  That’s right…some people will line-up in the wee hours of the morning for a chance to DRAW A TICKET to win a chance to get autographs from the Game of Thrones or Arrow casts.  I have a hard time comprehending that, to be honest. When we camped out for 21 hours, we at least KNEW we would be guaranteed to be in the presence of Peter Capaldi.  I digress.

Once the exhibit hall opened, we made a beeline to the Legendary Booth, taking full advantage of our New York City honed power-walking skills (NOT RUNNING!).  Alas, the line to draw a ticket was capped by the time we made it there.  Clearly, the universe knows we aren’t ready to be face to face with Tom Hiddleston.

Free Star Wars buttons!

Free Star Wars buttons!

Since the majority of the early morning crowd was occupied with getting exclusives, we took advantage of the lighter traffic flow and walked the exhibit hall from end to end. I highly recommend anyone attending a major con to do this.  There are so many unique booths and vendors to discover outside of all the licensed merchandise. The degree of creativity displayed in the hall is astounding, from traditional comic book art to handmade toys to prints inspired by various fandoms.  These are the best souvenirs, in my opinion, because despite the “exclusive” merchandise, these are the things that are truly unique to each con.  Before I came to SDCC, I had vowed not to buy any fan art due to the fact that my available wall space was rapidly decreasing. On the exhibit floor, however, my attitude was thus: “GIMME ALL THE ART”.  I was on the hunt for a good gift for Kelly, who was graciously watching my dog for me.  In the course of doing so, naturally things like this happened…

Honestly, as soon as I bought those Rose and Nine prints, I knew I wanted to keep them. I knew deep in my heart I wanted to find something X-Files themed for Kelly anyway. One would think that X-Files art would be easy to find. Nope. Whenever we would ask a particular booth whose style we enjoyed whether or not they had any Mulder and Scully, the reply was always the same: “No, but I should TOTALLY do them!!”  Yes.  Yes, you should. I expect there to be an abundance of Mulder/Scully art next year people. We did find that Joe Harris, who illustrates the comics for The X-Files, had a booth. He had a limited edition (there were only 100) print of Mulder and Scully for sale. I was unsure about getting it because I knew we had NO time to go back to the apartment that day and I was concerned about toting a print around all day without damaging it. He saw me waffling, grinned, and pulled out another print that he had limited quantities of.  I immediately forked over my money without giving it a second thought.  Why? Because this one had Mulder, Scully, AND Skinner.

Joe also recognized Kelly’s blog series, “Times Mulder and Scully Should Have Made Out This Week” (“It’s so clever!”) and wrote her a personal message on the back of the print. Thus, I left the exhibit hall with my wallet lighter but secure in the knowledge that I had scored an amazing gift for my friend. Mission accomplished.

On our way to our brunch destination, we had to pass through the crowds of protestors that had amassed outside of the convention center. Yep. Every day there were radical Christian and Anti-Abortion protestors outside the center with their bright yellow signs and fliers.  Perhaps they were taking advantage of the massive crowds or perhaps they really DID think we were all hell-bound for attending Comic Con. I’m not sure which. I’ll leave what Sage oh-so-eloquently said to a person who tried to shove an anti-abortion flier into her hand to your imagination, but just know it was amazing.

Party poopers. #SDCC

A photo posted by Head Over Feels (@headoverfeelsdotcom) on

Then we ran into what I consider to be one of the most brilliant publicity stunts I’ve seen. Well done, Team Damien. WELL DONE. (They often stood with their signs right next to the legit protestors, these guys were just on their break.)

Party starters #SDCC #Damien

A photo posted by Head Over Feels (@headoverfeelsdotcom) on

Brunch with OJ and a side of BAMF

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Yay for mimosas!

It goes without saying that we were devastated when Sleepy Hollow pulled out of SDCC because of production conflicts. Not only because the show missed out on some much-needed exposure (When someone on the floor saw Sage’s Ichabbie shirt we overheard them say “Is Sleepy Hollow still ON?” #promoteSleepyHollow) but because we had been counting on getting into its press session and getting face-time with our beloved cast.  We were delighted when our friend Terena informed us that she was coordinating an intimate offsite brunch event with Mr. and Mrs. BAMF themselves, Orlando Jones and Lyndie Greenwood. Time with two of our favorites, plus delicious brunch food (Crab cakes Benedict!! Chocolate pancakes!!), PLUS legit bottles of champagne for only 8 bucks? SIGN US UP.

I love that even though Orlando is leaving Sleepy Hollow (I can’t talk about it yet, you guys), he’s still the biggest ambassador to the fandom. Some performers THRIVE on interacting with their fans and Orlando is clearly one of them. Orlando didn’t sit down ONCE during the 2 hour event, instead choosing to visit every single table and spend a good amount of time with every attendee. When he arrived, he literally bumped into our waitress, whose hands were full of plates for another table. She was absolutely paralyzed with delight at seeing him and he promptly took the plates out of her hands and personally delivered them to the proper table. That’s the kind of guy he is. When we later teased him about how he worked the room, saying “Dance, monkey, dance,” he BELLY LAUGHED, teasing “I don’t appreciate your choice of animal!” Basically, he’s the best and we’re best friends now.

Besties

Besties

Lyndie Greenwood arrived a little late because she walked over to the restaurant on her own, rather than taking the car offered to her (she is THAT down-to-earth). She also arrived in a handmade cosplay of an obscure comic character that was SUPER HOT. She had tweeted earlier in the week that she had cleaned Party City out of its stock of mini-skulls, so it was awesome to see the fruits of her labor. We asked her if she was planning to walk the floor after brunch and her response was a giddy “Hell yes!”  She squealed with delight when she noticed that my phone case was Abbie and Ichabod (which I had completely forgotten about until the moment we took our picture together) and flailed when I showed her a picture of the Ichabbie prints I had bought at the Sherlock party the night before. “You don’t see NEARLY enough Sleepy Hollow art,” she exclaimed. “Tweet me the name of that artist!” ONE OF US.

IMG_1452

LOOK AT THIS ADORABLE NERD.

It was neither the time nor place to try to get any scoop about what’s to come on Sleepy Hollow (we didn’t want to be THOSE people), so sadly, we have nothing to report on that front.  (Hopefully Sleepy will have a big presence at NYCC and we’ll be able to bring you all the scoop then!) We were just grateful to be able to have some time to celebrate our show and to hang out with fellow Sleepyheads. We should do this every year…someone get it on Tom and Nicole’s calendar for next July!

I enjoy this candid shot so much. FRIENDSHIP.

I enjoy this candid shot so much. FRIENDSHIP.

Seth MacFarlane Animation Panel

GOD HELP US.

GOD HELP US.

Let it be known that SDCC is all about sacrifices and hard choices. Saturday afternoon’s schedule was jam-packed with everything from the offsite official Doctor Who meet-up to John Barrowman in a room with a microphone to the EW Women Who Kick Ass Panel and Crimson Peak (HIDDLES) in Hall H.  And where were we? Suffering through an HOUR AND FORTY FIVE MINUTES of Seth MacFarlane and company all in the name of getting good seats for Outlander and Hannibal.

And that’s all I have to say about that.  However, I will begrudgingly admit that it was pretty impressive when they did a live-read of a few Family Guy scenes.

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HOF at SDCC – Our Expectations and Wildest Dreams

Posted by Kim and Sage

It’s finally here.  Tomorrow we get on a flight to head to the Super Bowl of Fandom: San Diego Comic Con.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We still can’t believe that we’re going.  After weeks of arduously reading every fan forum we could in order to get insider information, after studying the schedule meticulously, after making to-do list upon to-do list, the time has finally come to just shut up and DO THIS.  We’re ready…yet not ready.  As professional attendees of New York Comic Con, we’re aware that no schedule can be set in stone. Panels fill up unexpectedly and things can change at the very last-minute.  Nevertheless, we have our ideal schedule along with our expectations and dreams for them.  Follow us on Twitter and Instagram all week for our updates.  Detailed posts will go up when we return from the con bruised, bloodied, utterly content, and ready to do it all again in 2016.  LET’S DO THIS.

— Kim

Thursday

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

hunger games cast

Wildest Dreams: Jennifer Lawrence orders pizza for all of Hall H and we just hang out for an hour.
Expectation: Actually, that could happen.

Doctor Who

doctor who cast

Expectation: We get a trailer for Series 9 and Steven Moffat swears Hall H to secrecy.  Peter Capaldi will be dead sexy in his first Comic Con appearance.

Wildest Dreams: Said footage will include canon Whouffaldi. Peter and Jenna spy us in the audience and demand that we be cast in the Christmas Special.

Con  Man

con man cast

Expectation: Someone in the audience makes a “Sudden but inevitable betrayal” reference.
Wildest Dreams: Con Man is actually the production code name for Firefly Season 2

Geeks Go Glam Party

felicity wedding

Wildest Dreams: We actually get there in time to get gift bags.

Expectations: We party for 20 minutes before passing out Gallifrey One style.

And we're spent. Good night moon. Good night room. Good night Gilian's face. Good night Gally 1.

This never ceases to amuse us.

Friday

The 100

the 100 cast

Wildest Dream: That Sage won’t be spoiled for the entire series.

Expectation: She will be.

Minority Report

Expectation: No one misses Tom Cruise.

Wildest Dream: Stark Sands jumps on the table and gives us a little “Soul of a Man”, reprising his Tony-nominated role from Kinky Boots.

Marvel Television Presents

nailed it hayley james

Expectation: Hayley Atwell is flawless and makes a reference to 90’s hip-hop.  James D’Arcy makes us swoon.  Clark Gregg is a precious feminist sunflower.

Wildest Dream: Kim starts to care about Agents of SHIELD.

Orphan Black

orphan black cast

Expectations: Tatiana Maslany is a perfect unicorn and makes the whole room cry. Everyone mourns Delphine.  Kristian Bruun is a teddy bear.  Kristian and Tatiana recreate the Alison and Donny twerking scene.  We weep outside the doors of this panel because we stayed at the Marvel Panel too long.

Wildest Dreams: Jordan Gavaris gets locked out of the panel too and we spend the whole panel gossiping and trading skin care tips in his hotel room.

Nerd Nite Party sponsored by National Geographic Channel

breakfast club brian

Wildest Dreams: We find nerd boyfriends.

Expectation: We stuff our faces with the free food.

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Fan Video Friday – “King and Lionheart”

Posted by Kim and Sage

Another Summer Friday, another compilation of fan videos to help you pass the time before you’re out of work for the weekend.  Welcome to Fan Video Friday, where Sage and I truly do God’s work.  This week we bring you videos set to Of Monsters and Men’s “King and Lionheart”.  This moody and atmospheric ballad is an excellent companion to your dramatic and science fiction-y OTPs.  It’s a perfect song for a pairing that is a true PARTNERSHIP, be it a Gal Friday/Superhero, an Elf/King, or a crime fighting duo stopping the apocalypse.  All that is required is a partnership where the two are halves of a whole and can’t function without the other.  ENJOY THE FEELS.

(Also…no Mulder and Scully video to this song? You’re fired, internet.)

— Kim

Steve and Bucky – The Captain America Franchise

Sage: Starting all things “King and Lionheart” off on a particularly tragic note, here’s the story of star-crossed best friends Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes. The Winter Soldier is a “howling ghost” if I’ve ever seen one, and the entire second half of this video makes me want to throw my heart in the trash. Enjoy!

Twelve and Clara – Doctor Who

Kim: Sage wrote about this one when she did a compilation of all the best Twelve and Clara videos. But we couldn’t do a “King and Lionheart” post and NOT include this one.  This tends to be the first video we show people in order to drag them on board the S.S. Twelve/Clara.  It has a 100% return rate of convincing people.  We’ve verified this.  The vidder makes excellent use of shippy dialogue like “Beat that for a date!” and that TOTALLY unambiguous “I love you” from the end of “Mummy on the Orient Express”.  Join us on this ship, would you?  It’s not at all going to end in tears.

Also, if anyone deserves to be called “Lionheart”, it’s Clara fucking Oswald.

Oliver and Felicity – Arrow

Sage: FULL DISCLOSURE, Kerry of Veritas Productions is our pal. But who needs nepotism when the work is so damn good? Ship Captain Stephen Amell himself is among the many fans of Kerry’s excellent Arrow videos, and one should always follow her captain’s orders. So watch this video and admire fetus Olicity – all tentative feelings and reckless bravery. And listen up, CW: this is the Arrow I want back next season, you got me? Let the fanvids be your guide.

Abbie and Ichabod – Sleepy Hollow

Kim: “As the world comes to an end, I’ll be here to hold your hand.  Cause you’re my king and I’m your lionheart.” 

Um, yeah.  This song is about these two beautiful idiots who stand as the only thing between us and the end of the world.  And they stand together, hand in hand.  “I choose to forge my fate with you.”

IS IT OCTOBER FIRST YET?

Mal and Inara – Firefly

Sage: Fillion is basically a child here. And Morena Baccarin halted her aging process at 19, so that’s something she should teach us all how to do. Anyway, they are ATTRACTIVE. And while Mal and Inara are finally, FINALLY together in the Serenity comics, the show’s bullshit cancellation means that, on film anyway, this ship was all build-up and no…completion? Yeah, completion is the right word.

Much like in the 12/Clara relationship, I think that Mal’s friendship with Inara (and with the rest of the crew, but she called him out the most often) helped him to realize what a hero he’d been all along. He’s the king of his little sphere, made better because he wants to rise to his friends’ expectations of him. And Inara the Lionheart makes her way gracefully through a dangerous world by relying on her compassion, wits, and refusal to take shit. BAMF-est couple in the ‘verse.

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10 Scenes That Were Hotter Than Olicity’s First Time

cher christian clueless
Posted by Kim and Sage

Sage: After nearly three seasons of build-up, Oliver and Felicity finally did it on Arrow this week. And it was…underwhelming.

I mean, I assume that they did it, since they acted like they did the next morning. (Before Felicity drugged Oliver to try to drag him back to Starling City so he wouldn’t become the heir to the demon, like you do.) But you wouldn’t know it from watching the love scene alone. The CW really talked this consummation up, going as far as to describe it as “explicit.” Now, I know we’re on network TV here, but unless all the sex-panicked teachers from my Catholic grade-school were serving as the censors, I don’t have a blessed clue why pants-on neck-kissing deserves that distinction. When I was a kid, I honestly thought that people fell asleep during sex, so many times did I see a show or an edited-for-TV movie cut from tame kissing to waking up in the morning under an L-shaped sheet. That’s what this scene reminded me of.

In the end, it is not about what we saw or didn’t see. Olicity was once a steamy ship – every interaction from about midway through season one on was loaded with tension. But blame the Atom or Oliver’s talent for self-flagellation – they just…deflated a little this year. I’m sticking with Arrow despite its recent missteps, but Jesus, I expected a little more from something that was this long coming. (Or not, as it were.)

Kim: Where is the heat? The urgency? The desperation? The spontaneity? The freaking CONNECTION?

After the episode aired, I sat and pondered why the long-awaited consummation of Oliver and Felicity’s relationship left me cold.  Was it because it was so blatantly spoiled by the promos?  Because my reaction when Felicity came into the room was merely “Oh it’s sex time”.  Was it because of the slightly icky scene with R’as where it was basically like “You need to do this now before he’s lost forever”?  I think that had SOMETHING to do with it, but honestly I feel like it was because everything about the scene was like a sanitized version of a teenage fantasy of what sex should be like.  The only thing missing was rose petals scattered on the bed. HOW was this explicit?  Because she was on top for some of it (god FORBID a lady take pleasure in sex and being in control)? Because she took her bra off and sat in his lap and showed her bare back?  For heavens sake, they didn’t show any kissing below the neck.  No passionate reactions.  I mean come on…at least give me an O-face before calling it explicit.

Don’t get me wrong.  There is a place for candles and rose petals and the like, but this wasn’t it. This was about needing to be the closest you can get to someone.  About needing that CONNECTION that only sex can bring. And I didn’t get that from this.  It felt so blatantly choreographed and like they were going through the motions without actually FEELING them.  It was soulless.  It didn’t have the deep meaning that it needed to…especially in the aftermath.  Really?  You’re going to have Felicity say “Well that happened?”  As if it was not completely calculated?  I don’t care how socially awkward she is, NONE of that rang true.  Not if Oliver is the man she loves with every fiber of her being.  I don’t buy it.  This should have been EVERYTHING…and it wasn’t.

The next morning, I was thrilled to hear that Sage and several of my other lady friends felt the same way about it.  So we set out to find other scenes from network shows that HAD the element of heat and that pushed the envelope when it comes to sex on TV.  For clarification, we stuck to shows that air “The Big Five” (ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, The CW/WB/UPN) because they are held to different broadcast standards that your cable and premium cable shows.  In no particular order, here they are.

1) “It’s not too late” – Oliver and Laurel, Arrow

See? Arrow CAN do passion.  We’re by NO means Laurel and Ollie shippers here, but if this scene doesn’t leave you fanning yourself, something may be wrong with you.  There are parallels to the Olicity love scene here (picking the women up is surely Ollie’s signature move) but this scene has a desperation that is lacking in the Olicity one.  It’s in the way Laurel lunges toward him and wraps her legs around him.  It’s the way they cling to each other and it is in the way it seems like they can’t get close to each other fast enough. It has an element of PASSION and carnal desire that is completely lacking in the Olicity scene.

And this is coming from someone who finds that Katie Cassidy and Stephen Amell have very little chemistry otherwise.

— Kim

2) Chuck and Sarah’s Morning Make-Out – Chuck

One of the many instances in which a Chuck and Sarah hook-up was foiled, this scene from the season two episode, “Chuck versus the Colonel” is definitely the hottest. They don’t even get all the way down to business, but it’s clear that they would have – if only someone thought well enough ahead to hide his condom stash from Morgan. Anyway, the ol’ “oh no, we have to share a bed!” trope is a classic for a reason. Chuck and Sarah’s journey to finally getting together for good was drawn out somewhat laboriously over the years, but their passion in this scene feels very real and cosmically inevitable.

–Sage

3) Olivia and Fitz in the electrical closet – Scandal

Anyone who has read one of our Scandal gif-caps knows that we are 100% anti-Olitz.  But there is one thing you can’t deny about that relationship and that’s the UNBELIEVABLE heat Kerry Washington and Tony Goldwyn have between them.  This scene is not about love.  It’s about pure unadulterated LUST and need and the “I must have you RIGHT NOW” kind of sex.  And it’s undeniably HOT and sexy, even if Fitz is the worst.  Shonda Rhimes is the modern master of the envelope pushing television sex scene.  AKA the “how did she get the belt unbuckling and the pushing the panties down and the turning Olivia around so he could take her from behind” scene by ABC’s standards and practices division? There’s a reason her shows are on this list three times.

— Kim

4) Danny strips for Mindy – The Mindy Project

“Shut up about Diamond Dan, Sage.” I REFUSE.

I refuse, because this scene changed me and network comedy forever and I don’t care if you think I’m exaggerating.

I’ve already written at length (hey-ooo) about Danny’s striptease, and Kim has too. But allow me to briefly remind you that this is one of the far too few instances in mass market entertainment where the male gaze takes the backseat. Diamond Dan was all about Mindy. And us. And everyone who takes pleasure in watching Chris Messina take body rolling to a new level. Also, we all agree that this little display transitioned into some seriously worshipful sex, yes?

–Sage

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The Best Performances of 2014

Posted by Kim and Sage

We’ve named our Top 20 moments of 2014 (re-live those moments here and here) and now it’s time to turn our eyes to our favorite individual performances of the year. As usual, we make the disclaimer that we are but two modest bloggers and cannot see everything, so try not to get too worked up if your favorite isn’t here. Still, we live for nothing if not to celebrate great work when we see it. Help us do that, won’t you?

1) Julianne Nicholson – Masters of Sex

masters of sex lillian

Guys, I don’t understand why EVERYONE isn’t talking about Masters of Sex.   I’m still in the midst of watching season two (I watch it on my iPad at the gym, which must make for amazing over the shoulder watching for whoever is on the machine next to me.)  While Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan’s performances carry the bulk of the weight, Masters is incredibly rich in its supporting and recurring characters.  I love Julianne Nicholson’s Lillian DePaul because she is the anti-Virginia.  Where Virginia is warm and emotive, Lillian is awkward and tenacious and to the point.  Lillian is abrasive and seems to always be clawing her way up, believing her intelligence should stand on its own, whereas Virginia smoothly slides herself into the places she needs to be, unafraid to use her feminine wiles.  These women are two sides of the same coin, which is why they gravitate towards each other (even if Lillian does it kicking and screaming).  Obviously, the relationship between Virginia and Bill is the driving force of the show, but the unsung relationship of the show is Lillian and Virginia and what these two women learn from each other.  Virginia helps soften Lillian and teaches her that sometimes intelligence and passion isn’t enough to get you where you want to be, while Lillian, in her incredibly rigid way, teaches Virginia to expect MORE from herself and respect her own intelligence.  It’s a fascinating relationship and I love how Lillian isn’t afraid to call Virginia out for the way the affair with Bill is offensive to her.

“Don’t you understand what you’ve done makes it harder for every woman who comes after you?  Easier for every man that has designs on that same woman?”

The best friendships are the ones where one is not afraid to call the other out.  “Giants” is a spectacular episode for that very reason, as Lillian and Virginia end up screaming at each other in her office.  Neither is in the right, as Lillian disregards Virginia’s emotions, while Virginia refuses to admit that she is doing anything WRONG. (“We’re participating in the study” is the LAMEST excuse ever.)  It’s the kind of fight that would end a weaker friendship.  But when Lillian’s cancer flares up at the end of the episode and she passes out, who does she call?  Virginia. (“I am scared though, for what’s ahead, which means I can’t really afford to be upset with you now, can I?”) And Virginia comes because her friend needs her. FRIENDSHIP.

Don’t even get me started on when Virginia tucks Lillian into bed and kisses her forehead like one of her children.  The pain is too real right now.

Nicholson is so wonderful in the role because she allows you to see the woman behind Lillian’s brittle exterior.  It could have easily been a one-note character, but instead you see a woman terrified that she is losing the one thing she has always counted on and the only thing about herself she’s always prized: her mind.  Lillian has so many wonderful unexpected moments, like when she pulls a bottle of liquor out of her desk to have a post-work drink with Austin or when she slyly refuses to outright apologize to Virginia after their fight (acknowledging the non-apology IS the apology).  Given her character’s diagnosis, I always knew Julianne’s time on the show was limited…but that doesn’t mean I didn’t sob like a baby when Lillian died.  Because she did it on her own terms, blazing her path on her own, like she had always done.  HERO.

— Kim

2) John Barrowman – Arrow

arrow barrowmanarrow barrowman

You all know that John Barrowman can do no wrong in our eyes and we love Arrow for bringing him back to our television screens on a regular basis.  There is little to nothing redeeming about Malcolm Merlyn.  He’s a ruthless business man and an even more ruthless assassin.  His only loyalty is to himself.  Just when you think there might be hope for him in the form of love for his daughter, he turns around and drugs Thea, forcing her to murder Sara (with no memory of doing so) for some reason I’m STILL not entirely sure of other than fridging one female character whilst taking away the other’s agency. (Seriously, writers.  This is supposed to one of the most pro-lady shows on TV and you are failing this gender.)  It takes an actor with an innate sense of over-the-top theatricality to make all of these dastardly deeds seem grounded and realistic.  Luckily, John Barrowman has that in spades.  What elevates Barrowman’s performance is the fact that you can SEE how much fun he is having bringing this bastard to life.  He chews all the scenery with a fervor usually reserved for meals at five-star restaurants.  It’s nothing short of delightful.

— Kim

3) Jenna Coleman – Doctor Who

doctor who jenna coleman

2014: The Year of Clara Oswald.

Before Series 8 premiered, I was very lukewarm on Clara as a character.  This is not a slam against Jenna Coleman at all…she’s always been wonderful on the show, she was just saddled with bad writing and being reduced to a plot device.  Clara was a cipher, a puzzle for The Doctor to figure out, which did not do much for her in terms of a personality.  She showed flashes of who she was outside of being “The Impossible Girl” in “The Day of the Doctor” but that was lost in “The Time of the Doctor”.  Then Matt Smith regenerated into Peter Capaldi and EVERYTHING changed.  In the wake of having the Doctor go through an identity crisis, Clara’s personality solidified and what emerged was WONDERFUL.  Clara became a Type-A control freak who desperately wanted to “have it all” in her life.  Gone were the days of her being a nanny (really…what was that?) and she blossomed in her position as an English Teacher.  She moved past her hero-worship of The Doctor and became unafraid to push his buttons and call him out on his shit.  She demanded more of him because she KNEW the type of man he was capable of being and she did not accept him being any less.  She fell in love but refused to compromise herself or bend to Danny Pink’s demands of the relationship.  She is passionate, she is self-assured, she is empathetic, and she is ruthless.  She is devoted to The Doctor to a fault and she’s addicted to the life that he has shown her though their travels.  She is incredibly difficult and complex.  She’s not an easy woman content with simple pleasures, and I love her all the more for it.

With better material, Jenna emerged as a brilliant actress who was capable of bringing incredible pathos to Doctor Who.  In Peter Capaldi, she got a scene partner who pushed her to bring her A-Game every episode…and she did.  Their chemistry is electric and unexpected and thoroughly watchable (and shippable WHOOPS).  If you had asked me a year ago if I was ready for Clara to move on, I would have probably said yes.  Now?  I screamed with joy and almost flailed off my bed when she was confirmed for Series 9.  Don’t ever leave me, Jenna.

— Kim

4) Jesse L. Martin – The Flash

the flash jesse l martin

I’m still grappling with the notion that Jesse Martin can play a character with an adult child. For heaven’s sake, who’s holding down the anarchist movement at MIT??

Regardless. With Coach Taylor out of the game, Jesse’s Detective Joe West is the best dad on TV right now. Built on the sturdy base of Arrow, The Flash hit the ground running (hee) this year. The series boasts quality writing and very un-cheesy effects. But The Flash‘s ace in the hole? Its superhero casting. Grant Gustin is a find – heroic and unequivocally good, but without laying on the “gee, whiz” routine. I love the ingenuity of casting erstwhile nice guy Tom Cavanagh as the ambiguously unsavory Dr. Wells. And then, there’s Jesse. He’s just so WARM, you guys. I want him to bear-hug me into a coma.

I’m a sucker for a father/son relationship, especially a non-traditional one. And with Barry Allen’s biological dad (heeeeeey Mitch Leery) taking the rap for his wife’s murder, it’s Joe who’s held that position for most of Barry’s life. Like its sister show, The Flash wins at humanizing its heroes by focusing on the people who build them up and give them a reason to do what they do. In Joe, Barry has a boss, an ally, a possible future in-law, and the family he needs to keep on being that light. He’s the guy behind the guy.

When you first moved in with us, I thought it was going to be too much. I was already a single dad, finances were tough and you were a little boy who just lost his mother. But, man, I was wrong. Within two weeks you changed the whole dynamic of the house. Suddenly the house was filled with this light, this energy. I mean, you brightened up everything. You’ve seen more darkness than any man will in a lifetime and you never let it dim your soul. So there I was thinking that I’m changing your life by taking you in, but the truth is, you changed mine. So don’t lose that light, now, Bar. The world may need The Flash, but I need my Barry Allen. Let’s go home.

I think there’s something in my eye…

–Sage

5) Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl

gone girl rosamund pike

While everyone hemmed and hawed over the casting of Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike situated herself comfortably in the title role of this whole nasty business. (Also, Ben Affleck is an actor. He’s going to do movies. You may as well get used to it.) And she nailed it. Amy Dunne is a Hitchcock blond on Adderall. She’s cunning, merciless, vulnerable, and utterly insane. She scared the bejesus out of me. But because she also did that to every man in America, I root for her. Just a little bit.

–Sage

6) Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything

The only thing I can compare Eddie Redmayne’s performance in The Theory of Everything to is Daniel Day-Lewis in My Left Foot.  Both are extraordinary PHYSICAL performances that could easily feel gimmicky or like a blatant awards grab…but they are so rooted in the humanity of the men that they are portraying that they feel nothing but completely natural.  The difference in the performances is that Christy Brown was BORN with cerebral palsy, while Stephen Hawking went through a gradual decline thanks to ALS.  This gives Redmayne the opportunity to also grapple with the incredible struggle of being a healthy and brilliant young man being crippled by a horrible disease.  It’s a daunting challenge for any actor and Eddie Redmayne immerses himself in the challenge fully. The result is extraordinary. Physically, I don’t know how Eddie managed to contort his body for hours at a time…just looking at that gif makes my neck hurt.  The best part is how, despite the deterioration of his body, Eddie always keeps Hawking’s MIND alive.  It’s an incredibly aware and alive performance.  The wheels never stop turning, his eyes never lose the sly twinkle, even after he is no longer able to use his voice.  That’s right. In the final act of the movie, Hawking loses his ability to speak, leaving Eddie Redmayne with only his FACE to convey all the things going on in Stephen’s mind.  It’s mind-boggling.

— Kim

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The Top 20 Television Moments of 2014 – Part Two

Posted by Kim and Sage

When we posted our first ten moments of the year at the end of last week, one of our favorite commenters (you know who you are) said that she expected to see the How I Met Your Mother finale on the second half of the list.  “Absolutely not,” I countered.  Sure, the HIMYM finale has made a lot of other end-of-the-year lists, but for us, memorable does NOT equal best.  The HIMYM finale is memorable for all the wrong reasons.  It’s memorable for the rage it unleashes (I can’t begin to count the number of extremely heated debates I’ve had about that episode this year) and that rage does not have a place on our year-end countdown.  Am I still sad about the major death on The Good Wife?  Obviously.  Do I still talk about that death in all sorts of passionate “THAT WAS AMAZING TELEVISION” kind of terms?  YES.

That right there is the Head Over Feels definition of “Top Moment”, folks.

Looking at our 20 picks, I’m extremely proud at the breadth of television we’ve covered this year and our choices for the best of the best.  We’ve got comedies, dramas (both soapy and Comic Booky), reality shows, awards shows, and “news/talk” shows represented.  We MAY have a television problem.  It’s a problem we love to have.

— Kim

11) “Why is your penis on a dead girl’s phone?” – How To Get Away With Murder

Must See TV is but a distant, childhood memory. (Maybe because NBC doesn’t know how to treasure its comedies anymore, hmmm?) Thursday nights now belong to Shondaland.

One of the buzziest new series of the season, How to Get Away with Murder has a showrunner in Peter Nowalk and is overseen by drama queen Shonda Rhimes. Not a carbon copy of Grey’s or Scandal, HTGAWM quickly established itself as its own thing: a gothic mash-up of ’90s procedurals, primetime soaps and dark comedy, with the incomparable Viola Davis leading a cast of young unknowns.

Annalise Keating is fascinating. We’re a full half-season into the life of the show and still no closer to figuring out the law professor’s motivations than we were in the first minutes of the pilot. Viola plays Keating’s deep vulnerability to perfection, but any show of emotion is eventually revealed as another tool of manipulation. Does she feel anything? Or is she smart enough to know not to?

The focus of this pilot season has been the apparent murder of Keating’s husband Sam. Ever the doting spouse at university cocktail parties, Sam – like Annalise – isn’t what he seems. He was mixed up with a student, whose body ended up bloated and floating in a water tower. Already revealed as a cheater, could Sam be a murderer too? I honestly doubt that Annalise didn’t a) already know her husband was messing around, or b) cared one bit that he did. When would she have time? Between desk sex sessions with her giant cop boyfriend? No. This is a shakedown, my friends. Annalise always gets her man.

It’s the most striking scene in a show designed to fuel water cooler conversation. Annalise sits at her vanity and peels away the day. She wipes off all vestiges of the beauty standards imposed on women – on black women – and it’s not a dainty business. She uses pressure, rubbing the make-up away like she’s angry at herself for putting it on in the first place. She’s taking turpentine to a masterpiece she just finished painting. But when she confronts her suspect – a man she’s shared a bed with for years – she’s not going to do it as star defense attorney Annalise or molder of young minds Annalise. She’s going to do it as the bare canvas onto which she paints those identities.

And that LINE. Funny, shocking, emasculating. This is HTGAWM in nine simple words. And may the series bring us several more moments as indelible as this.

–Sage

12) Don and Peggy have a dance – Mad Men

Reminder to all the awards bodies out there: Mad Men did indeed air episodes in 2014 and they were EXQUISITE so SHAME ON YOU for completely ignoring them in awards season.  Did the division of the 14 episode season into 2 “mini seasons” probably mess with the notorious slow-burn pace of a typical Mad Men season?  Absolutely.  Just when it felt like it was getting started the “season” was over!  Does that mean that the episodes are any less in quality?  Absolutely not.  “The Strategy” will surely stand in the pantheon of fantastic Mad Men episodes alongside “The Suitcase” and “The Other Woman”.  It was a beautiful episode, from Joanie turning down Bob Benson’s marriage of convenience (“I want love.  And I’d rather die hoping that happens than make some arrangement.”) to the way Pete longs for the family that he so carelessly threw away to the way Peggy and Don are at each other’s throats over the pitch to Burger Chef.  What transitions the episode from good to GREAT is the scene with Peggy and Don in her office as Peggy finally cracks the pitch.  Just like Don knew she would.

Peggy: Does this family exist anymore? Are there people who eat dinner and smile at each other instead of watching TV? Did you ever do that with your family?
Don: I don’t remember.
Peggy: What the hell do I know about being a mom? I just turned 30, Don.
Don: Shit. When?
Peggy: A couple of weeks ago.
Don: It doesn’t matter.
Peggy: I kept it a secret as long as I could. Now I’m one of those women lying about her age. I hate them.
Don: I worry about a lot of things, but I don’t worry about you.
Peggy: What do you have to worry about?
Don: That I never did anything, and that I don’t have anyone.
Peggy: I was in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania. I looked in the window of so many station wagons. What did I do wrong?
Don: You’re doing great.

PEGGY OLSON.  I have always loved her but I related to her SO much in this moment.  It was a rough season for Peggy.  She is still a woman trying to make her way in a man’s world (remember Pete thinks saying “She’s as good as any woman in the field” is a compliment) and she’s a woman wrestling with the life choices she’s made that have led her down an “untraditional” path.  Should she have gone another way?  Would she have been happy going the married and kids route?  She knows that she would not have…but she also knows that she is alone and that’s a daily struggle for her.

The Don and Peggy relationship has always been the core of Mad Men.  They are so alike, those two.  It’s why Don is so hard on her.  He sees her potential for greatness and her potential to surpass him, which both excites and terrifies him.  It’s often WHY he struggles to praise her because she’s making the same choices he has made (identity theft aside) and he knows how it’s turned out for him.  He wants more for his Peggy.  He sees her self-doubt and he offers her comfort in the only way he knows how…with a smile of pride and a dance.

And now, the end is here
And so I face the final curtain
My friend, I’ll say it clear
I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain
I’ve lived a life that’s full
I traveled each and ev’ry highway
And more, much more than this, I did it my way…

The song choice may have been a bit on the nose, but in reality, there is no better song for these two lost souls to share a fleeting moment of connection and comfort over.  The next day will be back to business as usual.  Another pitch.  Another meeting.  They’ll probably be back at each other’s throats soon enough.  But for that moment…in that dance…they know that they can do it their own way and not have to be alone.  It’s beautiful.

— Kim

13) Amy Poehler wins The Pudding

The worst part of being nominated for any award is that despite your best efforts, you start to want the pudding. You spend weeks thinking about how it doesn’t matter and it’s all just an honor and then seconds before the name of the winner is announced everything inside you screams…”GIMME THAT PUDDING!!”

In Yes Please, Amy P. details the backstage machinations of all the plans she and her fellow nominees have concocted to get their minds off what she calls “the pudding.” And they’re all wonderful – the faux beauty pageant, Dog President, play-swapping speeches with JLD. But in 2014, the pudding finally went where it had needed to go for a long, long time. Amy Poehler won the Golden Globe.

It’s not special because anyone should give a shit about awards or that anyone is under the illusion that they always go to the right people. What was special about Amy’s win is that is that it was FOR Parks. I don’t mean that the nomination was for her work on Parks, I mean that this was an award for the entire show. One of the finest comedic ensembles on television in this decade or any other has been snubbed left and right for reasons that I can’t begin to understand. Amy, often the show’s sole nomination, has gone home empty-handed year after year. (Even the announcer sounds bewildered when he points out that this is her “first win.”)

So. When Amy’s name was FINALLY called and the Parks crew went ballistic, anyone could see that she was taking this one for the team. They stood and applauded and pointed at their girl. “Whoaaaa, Parks!” she shouted out to them, as I cried like a child. “The best cast in comedy and drama, as far as I’m concerned.” And the pudding was spread around, as it should be.

–Sage

14) Cristina and Meredith dance it out one last time – Grey’s Anatomy

Cristina: Wait, we’ll call each other at least twice a month and we’ll text each other all the time.
Meredith: I hate texting.
Cristina: TEXT ME! Don’t let Owen get all dark and twisty. Take care of him. And Alex, take care of Alex. He needs to be mocked at least once a day or he’ll be insufferable. Don’t get on any tiny little planes that can crash or stick your hand in a body cavity that has a bomb in it or offer your life to a gunman. Don’t do that. Don’t be a hero. You’re my person. I need you alive. You make me brave. Okay, now we dance it out.

There was really no other way for Sandra Oh’s Cristina Yang to leave Grey’s Anatomy.  I sat through a good portion of the season ten finale, “Fear (of the unknown)” waiting for something absolutely horrible to happen to my beloved Cristina.  Shonda Rhimes DOES love to kill her characters, after all, especially on Grey’s Anatomy.  Thankfully, she had other plans for Cristina Yang.  Cristina Yang was going to ride off into the sunset…erm…Switzerland.  She was going to take her favorite student Smash Williams (honestly, I never learned his ACTUAL character name) to Switzerland with her so she could continue to teach him and extend her legacy.  She was going to change the face of cardiothoracic surgery and win all the awards now that she was free from GSMH.  She was going to do all of that…after dancing it out with her person one last time.

Cue me sobbing, especially since Cristina and Meredith danced to Tegan and Sara’s “Where Does the Good Go?” which was used prominently in the fourth episode of the series.  Grey’s has ALWAYS been good with the musical callbacks and the Twisted Sisters’ jubilant dancing was a perfect way to reflect on EVERYTHING they had been through together.  Ectopic Pregnancies and Dirty Mistressing.  Bombs in body cavities.  Near drownings.  Mass shoot-outs.  Plane crashes.  Marriages.  Divorces.  Births.  Career jealousy and competition.  Meredith and Cristina have been through it all together, and while their bond has been TESTED, it’s never been broken.  When someone is your person, they are your person for life.  OTP of the show.

Cristina’s absence has left a gaping hole on Grey’s Anatomy this season and I miss her terribly.  Yet, her influence is still felt in Meredith’s life, as every single action she’s taken this season goes back to this truth bomb her best friend dropped right before she left.

Cristina: I gotta go. You stay here. You are a gifted surgeon with an extraordinary mind. Don’t let what he wants eclipse what you need. He’s very dreamy, but he’s not the sun. You are.

You can’t GET more OTP than that.  (And if Sandra Oh doesn’t come back for the eventual series finale, I will cry SO MUCH.)

— Kim

15) John Oliver Breaks the FCC – Last Week Tonight

We were predisposed to love Last Week Tonight, because John Oliver brought us such joy as a Daily Show correspondent, and also because he’s “got a real big penis and drinks lots of tea.”

But we couldn’t have predicted the impact the show would have, pretty much from the moment it hit HBO. With Colbert on his way out, surely there’d be room for more comedy news on our TVs. But what could have weekly report have over a daily one?

Simply this: because LWT doesn’t have the responsibility to recap a full day (or seven days) of the news cycle, it’s expertly developed its signature, long-form style. John and the writers hit on a piece of information, usually something that they can’t believe no one has forced us to fully understand before, and they report the daylights out of it. The result is sharp, hilarious, fully fleshed-out segments that have been known to end in a call to action. And John’s fans are ready to go to work.

The cable companies have figured out the great truth of America: If you want to do something evil, put it inside something boring.

The first time we saw the true power of LWT‘s ready-for-viral reports was when they shined a light on the proposed de-democratization of the interwebs. Net Neutrality is a terrifying prospect – essentially making the internet a pay-to-play situation and enabling hateful cable providers to hold companies seeking hosting hostage. No one seemed sufficiently freaked out by this, possibly because the language used to describe it was drier than an English sense of humor. LWT spend ten minutes laying it all out for us (we have an attention span when there are Taco Bell jokes), and then dropped the challenge. The FCC had opened its site for feedback on the proposition. Knowing that this was the job web trolls didn’t realize they had been training for all along, John called on the underworld network of internet commentors to rise up and fight. (“Good evening, monsters.”)

And fight they did. Viewers were driven to the site and responded in such a massive way that FCC.gov actually crashed. And Last Week Tonight moved on to further crusade for truth, justice, and sex-crazed space geckos everywhere.

–Sage

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