By Roy Mathur, on 2019-12-13, at 23:20:50 to 00:16:55 GMT, for Captain Roy's Rocket Radio Show, Listen
Happy the Friday 13th.
I Bought a bed.
I've been sleeping on a horrible single bed with a horrible mattress for half a decade. The old bed is dead, so I bought a second hand bed frame and a new mattress. It's a king size, thank god, so no more scrunching oneself into a human pretzel. It wasn't a bargain, but it was a lot cheaper than buying new. Seriously, why are charity shops so expensive? Don't they realise their customers aren't exactly swimming in cash?
No doubt, by the time I'm ready to tape this show, I'll be ready to unload a huge payload of complaints about how many problems the new bed has caused, but fingers crossed.
A few days later...
Big purchases like this stress me out and this is the priciest one I had to make all year. Mind you, it wasn't as bad as The Great Boiler Replacement Money Pit of October 2018.
I'm also stressed because I'm a poor sleeper, so this bed has a lot riding on it. No. No. No. Stop it. I hope this bed doesn't turn out to be a white elephant on which you can't mahout your way to dreamland.
In preparation for the delivery I did some research and, oh my god, how much do king size sheets cost?
They messed up the delivery. It didn't come on Wednesday, then it almost didn't come on Friday. Luckily, in a fit of doubt, I called them at the last moment to check. It arrived and then I had to sweat buckets supervising and hoping the deliverymen didn't whack the ceiling.
The assembly was simple. I only a few bolts to fit. The frame is light. It is mild steel, it's weight spread over a larger area on four corner legs and three central legs.
In all, it's been a nightmare. My recommendation is that the entire population should be rehoused in bungalows with giant exterior and interior doors to every area. Think of what ease of delivery would do for the economy. Oh no, why am I helping Amazon?
The new bed is reminiscent of something from Disney's Frozen, but it's better than the ridiculous hobbity headboardless upholstered chest of drawers, laughingly called a divan, I had before. (Which, by the way, is now blocking the corridor, because it is too awkward to move. I'll worry about it later).
Aaron Eisenberg, Nog in DS9, died in September, and top Star Trek TOS writer D.C. Fontana died this month. I also recently found out that yet more relatives had died some time ago, but no one had bothered to tell us.
On the other hand, this week we celebrated my parent's birthdays on Skype. This is the last year we'll have to do this remotely as they are moving early next year. Happy birthday Mum and Dad.
Another podcast I listen to were covering this film, so I watched it and wrote down my own thoughts, before listening to that episode. So here are my pure, unsullied, and brief words about the 2008 film.
It is a documentary style, low budget horror movie about missing girl in a remote Australian town. She is found drowned, then poltergeist type haunting events begin at her family's house.
That's all I actually know, because at fourteen minutes and fifty-two seconds, I suddenly couldn't watch anymore. You see, I looked at the remaining hour and however minutes left and... I wish I could say that the reason I stopped was because it frightened me, but it didn't. I'm not the audience for this type of movie. No offence to the creators, but I don't need realism, I need a strong dose of escapism in my storytelling.
My only objective criticism is that they should only have used non-actors. You can really tell when some of the actors are "I AM AN ACTOR" acting, and that's jarring for the documentary format the filmmakers was attempting.
However, from what I saw, it was well filmed and an interesting story, and perhaps, if you like found footage horror films (I don't), then this might appeal to you. Finally, the stunning Australian skies were a beautiful, haunting backdrop to the fictional outback town of Ararat. (A homage to Clive Barker?)
The 2017 film is a fun minor distraction, not as good as the Robin Williams original, but some very funny moments, like the Rock's smouldering and Karen Gillan's dance fighting skills. Kevin Hart and Jack Black aren't bad either.
Final girl marries into Society (1989)-like family in this 2019 horror-comedy. Much as I hate acting dynasties, proto-scream queen Samara Weaving is fun to watch. The film is entertaining until the last few minutes. I'd have preferred an ambiguous ending.
It also serves as an appropriately nasty career pallet cleanser for previously nice Julliane Moore, prior to her role as a cannibal in Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017).
It is described as a drama-comedy. It's not. It's a horror-comedy.
It's also supposed to be a satirical look at Hollywood, but the remake What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1991) is much better at that.
The Morning Show is a 2019 Apple show produced by Jennifer Aniston's and Reese Witherspoon's respective production companies. They are also the lead actresses.
It is about a morning TV team broken up when the male onscreen partner is outed by a #MeToo whistleblower. The replacement is a serious firebrand reporter and drama ensues in the conflict her and her senior soft news partner.
The tone is weird. It starts like a horror, turns into moody drama, then drama, then dramedy. The comedy element was a mistake.
The cast isn't quite up to the demands of their roles, except for the always excellent Witherspoon and black-clad Billy Crudup as the network's head of news; a direct ripoff of Ben Chaplin's editor from BBC's The Press (2018).
The #MeToo movement is handled clumsily. The script thinks it is nuanced; it really is not.
And the good points?
Issues of diversity are brought up and the diversity of the cast too seem to reflect media in general. I.e. lots of white men with minorities struggling on the sidelines.
The ongoing topical conflict between hard and soft news is examined.
The nastier hidden side from behind the scenes of the media industry are also examined. The backstabbing, dirty deals, and outright lies; all of which I have experienced firsthand, and we have talked about before that before in this podcast.Acting and tone quibbles aside though, this is a show about journalism. And so, I watched anyway. In fact, I boxsetted.
I boxsetted all eight episodes of season two of spy versus spy black comedy last night. Season two is very different from the first. It is more violent, nastier, with a slightly depraved edge. The writer/showrunner is no longer Phoebe Waller-Bridge in this more Bond-like season, which is odd because Waller-Bridge was hired to fix the script of the new Bond film No Time to Die.
I like the look of the series and Yoda Baby, but there's something about it that leaves me not completely satisfied. Maybe it's the non-progression of the central story, by veering off on these entertaining, but ultimately self-contained side-quests. However, I'm still seeing the first season through.
Amazon has dropped all of season four today.
I finished watching the first two episodes before recording this and I'm finding it a little hard to follow from where we left off.
This time we go through the portals/wormholes to these new extrasolar terrestrial worlds to see what's on the other side.
In episode ten, Elliot and Darlene triumph and Darlene and Dom get their moment. But Sam Esmail, with only a couple of episodes left, did fanservice need to be the only reason for this episode?
If you, like me, are into gothic horror/romance, then this little three episode run on The New York Times's The Daily podcast is for you. It is called The Jungle Prince and is about a lost Indian noble family... but that's all I can say without spoiling this.
There are a few rough edges, mainly because I get the impression that this type of story isn't the reporter's usual beat, but it's still a fantastic, horrific, and tragic fairytale that just so happens to be true. It is absolutely no surprise that the episodes exploded on Reddit.