house of zod review

Here we are, week five into the recapping experiment that is “Is This Show Getting Better: Krypton Edition.” Last week, I noted that Syfy’s Superman prequel series was starting to get better, but the story was still being annoyingly shrouded in mystery. This week, in “House of Zod,” we’ve finally broken through the mystery!

It turns out, Black Zero are…from the future. Well, at least the leader is. We also get some much-needed backstory on Jayna and why she’s so soulless.

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the word of rao review

Everyone, I can’t believe I’m typing this, but…this week’s Krypton, “The Word of Rao,” was actually good. I’ve been waiting for this day.

That doesn’t mean I don’t have a bone to pick. The action might have been surprising and the overall tone has shifted from stagnation all the way to third gear, but it’s not a great show. Not yet. The story this week – saving Lyta, who has been framed by Daron as the fall guy for the botched Rankless round-up, from execution – got quite convoluted. But let’s get into what worked in this episode work and what didn’t.

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The Rankless Initiative Review

It’s that time of the week in which I view the latest episode of Krypton and ask the question foremost in our minds: Is the show getting better? Dare I say that this week, we’ve seen some improvement?

This week’s episode, “The Rankless Initiative,” actually has a better defined pace and a clear motive: Seg needs to save Rhom (Alexis Raben), a friend to Seg’s family, from the clutches of Brainiac’s parasitical sentry designed to relay information about Krypton back to the big baddie himself. This showed a clear path Krypton could take going forward. By becoming a “monster-of-the-week” show, Krypton could establish a rhythm for itself while building its overarching storyline. The key word here is “could” – if Krypton will continue this course is anyone’s guess right now.

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House of El Review

Each week with my Krypton recaps, I’ve decided to pose this central question: Is the show getting better? Hope that the show will, in fact, find its footing after the uneven first episode is essentially what these recaps are floating on, after all.

So, to the answer about if Krypton is getting better…I’m not sure if it is? The answer is filled with insecurity because I honestly don’t even know what happened in “House of El.”

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So…about KryptonI can definitely say I’ve seen it. I know what happened in the premiere episode, but do I care about it? I can’t say I do. At least not yet.

Let’s run down the plot real quick. Krypton is a Superman origin story of sorts, but we’re not really discovering new information about Clark Kent/Kal-El’s origins; we’re discovering his grandpa’s origins. His grandfather, Seg-El (Cameron Cuffe) lives with his parents as “unranked” members of the elite, their rank stripped from them due to the so-called “treason” of Seg-El’s own grandfather Val-El (Ian McElhinney). Of course, this was actually his commitment to saving Krypton from otherworldly evils not yet seen. Seg-El finally realizes the importance of his grandfather’s legacy when a strange time-jumper from Earth, the aptly named Adam Strange (Shaun Sipos) tells Seg-El that he must take the sunstone key to his grandfather’s Fortress of Solitude and use his grandfather’s research to save Krypton from Brainiac (Blake Ritson). If Seg-El can save his homeworld, then he can save his grandson, Earth’s savior.

On paper, the show sounds ridiculous. Why are we even concerned with Superman’s grandfather’s origin story? But then you watch it…and it’s just as ridiculous.

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(This post contains immediate and major spoilers for The Walking Dead.)

Carl Grimes is dead. In all the seasons of The Walking Dead so far, I don’t think anyone would have guessed that one of the zombie apocalypse’s casualties would be Carl, one of the show’s original and longest-running characters. For many fans, a show without Carl is like a show without his dad,  Rick – it just wouldn’t be The Walking Dead. It would be a completely different show that didn’t sign up for.

You would think the creative team behind The Walking Dead would respect that. But instead, they have thrown caution to the wind and committed one of the most asinine decisions in the show’s history. They killed Carl. What’s even worse, they killed him without any ascertainable reason.

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Black Panther highest grossing

Black Panther is Marvel’s greatest achievement. It’s my type of superhero film; one that’s deep, impactful, and still super cool and fun to watch with a bowl of popcorn. With its historical, social, and racial importance, Black Panther stands apart from other Marvel movies as an example of how reality can affect the comic book film world. Plus, it’s also one of the biggest financial successes the MCU has seen and it’s not slowing down

But after Black Panther, what now? The film has reached a level Marvel hadn’t seen before. How can the studio get lightning to strike twice? Most importantly, how can they keep shaky MCU fans like me from wondering if Marvel can reach similar storytelling depths again with future films? Will Black Panther be the only one of its kind?

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A Wrinkle in Time Trailer

(In our Spoiler Reviews, we take a deep dive into a new release and get to the heart of what makes it tick…and every story point is up for discussion. In this entry: Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time.)

I’m going to start this A Wrinkle in Time spoiler review a little differently than normal. I think we, as a critic and audience, should be honest with each other for a moment.

Some of you out there might not be aware of this, but there’s a certain burden that comes with being a woman of color in the film criticism space. To be truthful, I don’t feel this burden all of the time, but I always know it’s there. As I’m surprised to find, writing this review for A Wrinkle in Time happens to be one of those times in which I distinctly feel the pressure I’m under as a black woman to like and laud A Wrinkle in Time, to support director Ava DuVernay. But I can’t honestly do that. The film has a multitude of issues that must be addressed.

However, the film itself can also be reviewed on two different levels: how it performs as a film for children and how it performs as a film for adults.

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Have you noticed how some of the biggest names in black supeheroism often operate in a corner of their hometown instead of saving the world? While Superman, Batman, and others often take an entire city under their wing, black superheroes like Luke Cage and Black Lightning only look out for their neighborhood. Why is that?

The answer lies in America itself. For too long, America has been a divided country, with black Americans deemed unimportant and low-rung next to white Americans. Because of that segregation, we have historically looked out for each other, since no one else would help us. Interestingly enough, the same racial and social politics of our country has bled into comics, whether people realize it or not.

Too often, black superheroes are called in out of necessity, not choice. Their neighborhoods are overrun with crime and lawlessness, and the other superheroes aren’t going to help. Therefore, it’s up to black superheroes to take the reins and act as their neighborhood’s regulator.

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Aftermath Empire's End Details

Solo: A Star Wars Story hits theaters this May, and the character everyone is the most excited to see isn’t Han Solo. It’s Lando Calrissian.

Lando, initially played by Billy Dee Williams and now Donald Glover, has been a huge force (no pun intended) in the Star Wars universe. His personality, good looks, and roguish charm have secured him the honor of being one of the most influential and coolest Star Wars characters of all time. But what many don’t realize is how much Lando’s character stems from another popular genre created before Star Wars hit theaters – blaxploitation.

Lando’s characterization and his style owe a huge debt to blaxploitation. But Lando also adds another layer to the conversation blaxploitation engages in about black images in the media. How does Lando, colloquially called a “space pimp” by fans, contribute to the conversation and in what ways does he actually hinder how blackness is viewed in film? To mediate further on these questions, let’s start with the beginning of blaxploitation itself.

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