Full Season Reviews

Review: Runaways (Season 2)

While the familiar page-turning Marvel logo may grace the beginning of every Runaways episode, this Hulu original barely resembles any of the other properties of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that the show supposedly inhabits. As the character of Nico Minoru pointed out herself, these characters do not have codenames or costumes, and they certainly are not superheroes. These are just teenagers going through an extraordinarily rough time.

Review: Daredevil (Season 3)

Matt Murdock has had a hard life. Just when you think our favorite superpowered blind lawyer vigilante has totally hit rock bottom, the extraordinary situations that he gets into keeps bringing him lower and lower. Matt, a devout Catholic, has had enough of the big man upstairs. It isn't that he no longer believes in God—it's that he's just sick and tired of his suffering brought on by God. There's a lot of brooding and complaining in the first six episodes of Daredevil season three; we've known the MCU version of Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) for some time and we're probably used to it.

Review: Titans (Season 1)

There comes a point in one's life where they become disillusioned with the world and their surroundings, and when one's optimism and idealism become cynicism and nihilism. In Titans, that disillusionment is a constant in a world that appears to be defined by misery and violence. The promotional material gave off 'dark' and 'edgy' vibes, like the idea of what a child would consider to be 'adult' and 'mature.' After viewing screeners of the first three episodes of Titans, I'm willing to give it some more credit than what I initially did.

Review: Better Call Saul (Season 4)

The path to redemption is not necessarily a straight line—rather, it can be sinusoidal instead. With Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) in Better Call Saul, his journey as a con-man trying to turn into a genuinely good person is full of twists and turns, with opposition coming from forces who believe he will never change. And it's perhaps because of these forces that Jimmy will be reduced into the very monster these people think him to be. Season 4 of Better Call Saul does not skyrocket us into the Saul Goodman we know from Breaking Bad, but there are indeed shades of Saul throughout.

Episodic Recaps/Reviews

Recap: The Mandalorian Season 1, Episode 5 - The Gunslinger

Generally, I abhor the term 'filler' when it comes to television. Even when an episode doesn't make too many strides in long-term plot development, I usually feel like I get something out of the experience—perhaps it fleshes out a character, or depicts a certain tone or mood. Admittedly, I have no clue what episode 5 of The Mandalorian was going for. Our characters didn't learn anything profound, either about the larger plot or themselves. It was literally and figuratively a pit stop.

Recap: The Mandalorian (Season 1, Episode 1)

Star Wars was never meant to be a giant pop culture phenomenon, nor was it envisioned as a prime example of the capitalist Hollywood nightmare we now live in. Yet despite the flaws and missteps of this gargantuan franchise, I've always believed that Star Wars is a series that justifies the existence of its expanded universe. With that in mind, I was impressed by how the premiere of The Mandalorian on Disney+ finds its own space in that world.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episodes 12-13 - "The Sign"/"New Life"

During every episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. this season, I've question why the hell any of the lower-ranked agents would want to work for this agency. It seems generally unrewarding, judging by the unusually high redshirt death count in comparison to the lower volume of episodes in season 6. Even still, no one seems as miserable as our main characters, especially by the end of this season.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episode 10 - "Leap"

A silly pet peeve of mine is when people label any television episode in a confined space a "bottle episode." That's one of the requirements for sure, but in the spirit of problem-solving in filmmaking, it has to solely take place on one of the main sets of the show. I wouldn't have guessed that a late-era Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. bottle episode would be that entertaining, because the Lighthouse is boring as hell, but "Leap" (mostly) proved me wrong.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episode 8 - 'Collision Course (Part I)'

If you needed a metaphor for the plot lines of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 6, look no further than the end of the newest episode, which serves as a literal embodiment of the episode's namesake. This season has been consistent in fun, but less consistent in coherence. Characters are scattered and every episode feels like a different format. In the first part of this two-parter, the audience is promised that everything will finally fit into place.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episode 5 - 'The Other Thing'

It was a bit strange going from two high-concept episodes in three and four, each focusing on a different narrative, to a pretty standard one that tried to tie everything together. Now all of the pieces appear to be set, motivations seem to be clear, and characters are reuniting. Yet I still can't scratch away the feeling that something about this season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is really irking me at the moment.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episode 4 - 'Code Yellow'

I recently made the most obvious realization for a certain Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. character. The word 'deke' is 'a deceptive movement or feint that induces an opponent to move out of position,' hence our sneaky Deke Shaw character. He is a grifter by nature, one who has slowly filled both the comic relief and outsider roles of the show. Jeff Ward has earned his place on the Marvel show, even with his late entry, more so than other new characters before him. With that, I sure hope you like Deke too, because his part is the only one that really works in this middling episode.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episode 3- 'Fear and Loathing on the Planet of Kitson'

There's a bit of irony with how Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. in its infancy used to be unfavorably compared to Firefly. Over five years later, and here we have an episode that will have me enthusiastically declare S.H.I.E.L.D. to be the more entertaining Whedon Space Show. Granted, S.H.I.E.L.D. is on season six, while Firefly was canceled after just one, so it's had more time to grow and get me invested in the characters. Perhaps that's how the show earned to right to do this ridiculous romp of an episode.

Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 6 Episode 2 - 'Window of Opportunity'

'Sarge' is not Coulson. See, in the opening scene of 'Window of Opportunity,' the second episode of the sixth season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., this evil Coulson doppelgänger finds something that fits his grungy aesthetic better. It is still almost as uncanny for the audience as much as it is for the characters to see this look-alike strut about, but actor Clark Gregg is doing a decent job distinguishing whoever this guy is from Coulson—though it's mostly thanks to his oddball team.
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