I had a feeling I could be someone, be someone, be someone… (Goodbye HBO’s Girls)

splash_girls-thr

After six seasons the polarizing television show, Girls, ended its run on HBO.  I’ve been watching since I day one.  I remember seeing the articles and the commercials and getting excited. I felt like I found a show that might relate to what my friends and I were going through in our twenties.  I wasn’t wrong.  The show did cover how different being in your twenties was compared to when our parents were in their twenties.

Sure, I didn’t always relate. I had a different life in my twenties (I’m 29 going on 30 in July).  I wasn’t running around New York City. I was trying to get my bachelors/graduate degree. I was tethered to my small-town world.  I was living vicariously though the show sometimes. I hated a lot of my twenties and man did I hate quite a few seasons of this show.

Wait.

I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me explain how I feel about this show now that we have a final episode.  I see this how as a character study.  We, as an audience, joined these characters at one point of their lives, stuck around for six years and then moved on.  We were never meant to see any final decisions. It was just a slice of life. We had six years with these people, and we know as much as they do.

That is what Girls was.

We are left with so many questions because life leaves us with so many questions. To tell you the truth I felt like everyone had a better ending than I expected.  My favorites, Shoshanna and Ray, got their happy endings (not with each other which surprised me).  Jessa is still looking for a reason for her existence, but she has a grounding source in Adam. Adam is grounded but can still be crazy with Jessa. They work together.  Elijah finally started to grow up by finding his own path.  Marnie, being the eternal optimist, is still searching but perfectly ok with that.

Which leads me to Hannah.  I’ve been seeing lots of posts saying that the show set a dangerous precedent by saying that the only thing to make Hannah happy was a baby. I didn’t see it that way at all. This character runs from everything. That is her own arc for the show.  She is always searching for something to make her stay.  Each season she would set her sights on something and the minute it doesn’t fit she ran for the hills. She was constantly looking for something to make her stay.  She found it in the one aspect of life that requires you stay.  She found it in someone she can’t leave behind. If that works for Hannah, good for her. It was time for Hannah to quiet her mind and just settle.

This show also covered the idea of friendships, female and male.  As much as we wish it were true, the television show Friends isn’t a great representation of friendships. I’ve had so many friends over the years. Some stuck around, and some have left. Some have left great memories, some make me angry, and some don’t even get to be remembered. Friendships are fleeting or forever, and that is ok. In fact, I’m convinced that my oldest friend, she won’t read this, Erin and I are a mix of Marnie and Hannah. Depends on the situation. We can go years not talking, but then if something comes up, we are back in each other’s lives. Sometimes it works out, and sometimes it doesn’t. Either way, we aren’t going anywhere, but we have to lead our own lives. That requires not talking for years, so be it. That is fine. That is our friendship. This show talks about that, and it is refreshing. It acknowledges that friendships aren’t meant to be forever. Those friends you make in college, or high school isn’t always going be there regardless of what those movies and books tell you.

Sometimes you need someone for a particular time, and that is ok. That is something people talk about in entertainment, but Girls did, and I will always appreciate that. Speaking of which, Girls was a show that I needed for a time.  Sure, I’ll come back and visit, rewatch my favorite episodes, revisit a few friends but then move on because that is human.

I’m very happy this showed existed, but I think it ended at the right time.  So, goodbye Girls. I appreciated our time together, but it’s time to move on.

Advertisements

We are in Trouble Now: Classic Lifetime Movies

Welcome back to the randomness! Today we continue with Lifetime.

As I wrote in the previous week, I feel that the network for the lack of a better word sucks. It leads me to think about the times when the network was fun to watch. Especially the movies. It got me thinking of the movies I loved to watch on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Some movies have stayed with me to this day. Here are my top three favorite Lifetime Movies! Let us begin:

Death of a Cheerleader (1994)  

Death_of_a_Cheerleader_add_size023

This is a classic. For some reason back in the 90’s, there was an obsession with cheerleaders and the people who would kill to be a cheerleader. This movie is no different.  It does delve into the common topics of peer pressure, being accepted and teen bullying before it was cool. It brings up the importance of treating everyone with respect. It also has a mystery vibe (thought you know who did the murdering but it tries). I think this one is a favorite because of how campy it is. Sometimes you need a little camp in your movie. At least unintentional camp.

Fifteen and Pregnant (1998)

Fifteen_and_pregnant_DVD_cover

This movie has always been a favorite of mine. There is no real reason. I like to call it the original Teen Mom story.  I think I enjoy this story because it was straight forward. There were no easy answers. Each decision made by the main characters had consequences. It is a no thrills look at how having a child affects your whole life. I always thought this movie should have bene shown in health classes. Nothing scares teenagers more than the truth.

Sex and the Single Mom (2003)

Sex_and_the_Single_Mom_DVD_cover

This is one of the last movies I remember liking. After this, it becomes a slew of bad remakes or movies that cover events from television shows that may or may not have happened. Regardless, I liked this one because of how likable the characters were in the face of real issues. In a world where single parents are more common starting to fall in love again while parenting a teenager doing the same is hard. Much like Fifteen and Pregnant every choice has consequences. There are no easy answers. It feels like you are going through everything with the characters. The movie takes you on a ride. There is a sequel but it wasn’t as good as he original (shocker).

You can find these movies on YouTube or on Hulu. They are hard to find now but worth the search and watch. I hope that Lifetime goes through another transition. Maybe the powers that be will remember what made the network so popular in the first place. I can tell you it wasn’t reality shows. It was movies and television shows that reflected what women were going through and how they weren’t alone. Maybe sometime Lifetime will realize that and do better.

Until next time, the randomness has ended. I hope you enjoyed.

The Warm Love of the Television Screen

Welcome back to Valentines Day month! Go with it people. This week I will be talking about those romantic television shows. I swear they exist. Among all the murder porn, raunchy comedies and social commentary show romantic shows do exist. My expert romantic comedy nose always finds them, and nothing is better than watching some lovely romance on television. So, here is a list of my top three favorite romantic television shows.

Mad About You

tumblr_npmx5rIrXr1sa4xl1o4_1280

Mad About You isn’t a show a lot of people talk about anymore. When they do bring it up, it is made fun of and used as a ‘wink wink nudge nudge’ joke. I take offense to that sometimes. Mad About You is one of my favorite television shows (well, the first four seasons. I will get into that later). Mad About You’s premise is pretty straightforward. It is about Jamie and Paul Buchman, a couple living in New York City, trying to navigate the common pitfalls marriage brings while handling their expectations as well as their families.

Many people wouldn’t consider this a romantic television show. It is a comedy, yes, but romance was the heart that kept this show going. Jamie and Paul didn’t fall in love instantly. Jamie was completely scarred by love. Paul is a hopeless romantic. Jamie usually has a guard up while Paul is a little bit more open with his life. These people are complete opposites, but yet they work. To watch these characters be individual people dealing with their issues while constantly supporting each other is so much fun and romantic. To me at least.

Yeah, it is a mainly a comedic series, some of the situations are silly and would never happen. I get that. There are a lot that do happen, though. They handle in-laws, their cousins, best friends, work obligations, life crisis and handling their changing relationship, as they get older.

These two characters are on two different spectrums and have their issues, but they complete each other in the best ways. The later seasons things change. I think the actors wanted to move on. The writers changed. It is not good. Stick to the first three (a little bit of four) seasons and you will be golden.

That brings me to scene that I love. Jamie’s ex-boyfriend wrote/drew a comic book making her into this man hating/killing super being. She starts to believe that is her personality until Paul brings her back to earth. They bring out their best selves in each other. That is why I love watching this show and this couple every year.

Coupling

coupling_uk-show_3697

Coupling came into my life at a very scary time. I was in a spiral of self-pity, and the show made me laugh at a time where I didn’t think laughter would be possible. Yes, heavy handed but it needed to be said.

Coupling is Britain’s answer to Friends. Coupling was about a group of friends centered around Susan and Steve. They try to navigate their new relationship as their friends (Jeff, Sally, Patrick, and Jane) interrupt and go through their adventures as well. I call it the raunchy version of Friends. The show spends a lot of time on sex, but it is incredibly funny and witty that it doesn’t offend. The series was created and written by Steven Moffat. Yes, that Steven Moffat.

tumblr_msqu6oG5Uf1rj1uvvo1_250

This show, while a comedy, spends a lot of time on how different romance can be. No road to finding someone to love starts or ends the same. Susan and Steve are the traditional romance (well as traditional as they can get). Patrick and Sally are the opposites attract (my favorite because their story develops so naturally). Jeff and Jane are the singles going through life being their awesome selves while looking for fun rather than a future.

It is a fun show that naturally shows how couples operate in the real world. Sometimes it is messy and doesn’t always work. Sometimes the order is wrong (watch the show and you will understand) and sometimes it is ok to look for fun rather than ‘the one.’

My favorite couple is Patrick and Sally. I am a sucker for the ones who argue and kiss. My favorite moment between them is when Patrick admits he loves Sally. Spiderman is included. Check out the series. It is the best thing to happen to the BBC.

Sex and the City

images

This one is tricky. When I bring up, Sex and the City and people have mixed reactions. Some adore it for what it was while others hate it for the effect it had on television. I am one of the people who love it for what it was to television. It is a time capsule of a time where women were allowed to speak frankly about relationships and sex without euphemisms. They did not have to be politically correct about anything in this show.

That is why I love it so. Every relationship that appeared on this show had a reason for happening. It was meant to show what some women go through while trying to fit into society and what is expected of them in adulthood.

That is how far I will go with that. Since, tomorrow, I will go into full detail on why Sex and the City are not that bad of a show.

images (1)

These are my favorite romantic television shows. Whenever I’m truly feeling down about romance or the idea of romance I watch a few episodes of this show, and my faith is renewed. Not everything in life is easy or simple. Nor will you fulfill that social construct of romance in adulthood. We all go about finding romance our own way, and that is ok. Do you agree with my list or do you have other shows you want to add. Tell me below in the comments!

Stick around because tomorrow I tackle and defend Sex and the City.

Until then, the randomness has ended. I hope you enjoyed!

Shoe Money Tonight! aka Why You Should Watch Sports Night

sports-by-jetblack-thebebopdotnet

Welcome back! As promised, I will be talking about the television show Sports Night. One of Aaron Sorkin’s first forays into television. It was one of my first taste of Aaron Sorkin’s writing. This show will forever be part of my ‘Forever Favorites’ list. It only lasted two seasons, and many people seem to have forgotten the show, but I’m here to give you three reasons to try it out or come back to re-watch.

For people who do not know, Sports Night is about the behind the scenes drama that comes with producing, writing and starring in a late-night sports news and recap show. It follows the producer, Dana as she wrangles the staff, which includes Jeremy, Natalie and the anchors/writers of the show Dan and Casey.  She answers to Isaac, who deals with the network brass (he is also the best character ever).

Why should you watch? Read on to find out!

The Characters

The characters are what make the show so much fun to watch. Each character has a particular place in the show. Without them there the show just would not work.  They are all puzzle pieces that fit together in a fun quirky way. Each piece needs each other to survive. That could be said for all of Aaron Sorkin’s characters. They need each other to work well together. They have viewpoints but can be persuaded to change their minds.

These characters are flawed. They can make you want to throw them against the wall sometimes. However, you are still with them as an audience. You want them to grow and succeed against the network, against J.J. (the most annoying character ever) and their old ideas.

The Quotable Quotes

Much like most of Aaron Sorkin’s work, there is some great dialogue. Things that you will be quoting long after you see the show.  The characters do have those famous long speeches, but they were never without merit. The one character that gave the best speeches were Isaac and Dan. They were emotional, straight to the point and made us understand a character’s mindset on a situation or topic of conversation. Sometimes it is funny and sometimes incredibly serious and true. Even today a lot of the topics talked about are still issues we deal with. Here are a few of my favorite quotes.

“So, don’t adjust that dial; and while we’re gone, if any talking animals ask you to buy some tacos or beer-for God’s sake, do what they tell you…” – Casey McCall

“Shoe money tonight!” – Dana Whitaker

Look, I got into this because I like getting people to like sports. And I’ve turned into a PR man for punks and thugs. And any atrocity, no matter how ridiculous, or hideous, or childish, it doesn’t matter. I make it sports. Ten-cent bagman whacks a skater’s leg with a crowbar, that’s sports. Second round draft pick gets cranky in a Houston bar, and that’s sports. And let’s not forget the mother of all great sports stories – a double homicide in Brentwood.” – Casey McCall

My favorite speech comes from Isaac and the episode The Six Southern Gentlemen of Tennessee.   The episode covers six football players refused to play under the Confederate flag that flies in the stadium.

“Exaudio, comperio, conloquor. That’s a Latin phrase that translates “To listen, to learn, to speak.” Those words are carved into the stone arches that form the entrance to the undergraduate library at Tennessee Western University. This afternoon, an extraordinary young man named Roland Shepard made what had to have been an excruciating decision. He said he wasn’t playing football under a Confederate flag. Six of his teammates then chose not to let Shepard stand alone. And I choose to join them at this moment. In the history of the South, there’s much to celebrate. And that flag is a desecration of all of it. It’s a banner of hatred and separation. It’s a banner of ignorance and violence and a war that pitted brother against brother, and to ask young black men and women, young Jewish men and women, Asians, Native Americans, to ask Americans to walk beneath its shadow is a humiliation of irreducible proportions. And we all know it. Tennessee Western has produced some outstanding alumni in the past hundred years. People of wisdom and vision. Strength and compassion. One of them is Luther Sachs. Luther Sachs owns Continental Corp. Which owns the Continental Sports Channel, which you’re watching right now. Luther Sachs is a generous alumni contributor to Tennessee Western, with a considerable influence over its chancellor, Davis Blake, and its board of trustees. Luther, you’ve got a phone call to make. You’ve go to call Chancellor Blake, and tell him to take down that flag, or he can stop looking for your checks in the mail. You’ve got to put these young men back in a classroom. And I mean pronto. These boys are gonna make you proud one day, Luther. I challenge you to do the right thing. Not an unreasonable request to make of a man whose alma mater declares, “Exaudio, comperio, conloquor.” “To listen, to learn, to speak.” In the meantime, God go with you, Roland Shepard, and you six Southern gentlemen of Tennessee. God’s not done with any of you, yet.”

The Issues Covered

With that speech, the show includes many issues. You could look at this as a warm up for The West Wing and even The Newsroom. This show goes through different topics like sexual assault, domestic violence, divorce, racism, drug use, suicide, illness just to name a few. Some of it relates to sports, and some of the topics affect the main characters. Either way, the issues are talked about in a natural way, and the characters do not shy away from different opinions on a topic. The issues are not usually solved in the half hour, but there was a healthy debate.  A lot of debates that are still important in 2016.

The actual downside of the show? It has a laugh track. Some idiot somewhere decided this show needed a laugh track/real audience. This show doesn’t need help. It isn’t an average sitcom. It was much more than that.

This show is great and ended way too soon and on a cliffhanger! Not cool ABC. Not cool to let the show fall like that (Goes for you too Aaron Sorkin. He was so busy with The West Wing he let Sports Night fall apart).  I still think it is worth watching and enjoying for these reasons and many more.

reunions-sports-night-01_0

You can watch the whole series on Hulu, and it is available on DVD in a nice collectible set. It is filled with commentaries, specials, and deleted scenes. It is pretty awesome.

So, what do you think? Will you give Sports Night a try? Tell me below!

Until next time, the randomness has ended. Hope you enjoyed!

No Wait…That Other Pride and Prejudice Film: My Top Three Pride and Prejudices Adaptations

Welcome back to the continuing adventures of Pride and Prejudices and its many adaptations. The plotline of Pride and Prejudice has been used more times in films, television and books than I can even count.  I have tried to see as many versions as I possibly can, but I am not super human. I try to have a life (Shut up. Stop laughing). Over the years, I have found a few favorites among all of these adaptations. Before I start, I have to say that Bridget Jones is not on the list because that would be too easy. I do adore that film (not the sequel. God no…not the sequel) but it is not meant for this list. So, here are my top three favorite Pride and Prejudices adaptions.

Bride and Prejudice

arts-graphics-2004_1153481a

This Bollywood film takes the central idea of the Pride and Prejudice story and sets it in a place where some of those ideas are still present (according the film). I love this adaptation because it was a different take. Not only is it a musical (seriously…the music is amazing. You will be humming most of the songs long after you saw the film) but it has their Elizabeth and Darcy actually talk about things just hinted at in other versions.

What I mean by that is take this scene from the movie. Go ahead…watch…I will wait.

It is meant to be the scene where Caroline Bingley has Elizabeth walk around the room and talks about what Mr. Darcy looks for in women. They have Elizabeth say a few biting comments and that is that. In this version, this Elizabeth or Lalita does not let Darcy get away with some of his prejudice comments. I rather liked that she called him out. Darcy needs to be called out sometimes.

It is a lot of fun and opened my eyes to other types of films out there. I am still working on my Bollywood film journey, but this is a great place to start!

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

images (2)

Come on! You know this had to be on here. One of the most successful (Emmy-winning…just to remind people) transmedia projects I have ever seen.  I have a thing for transmedia. I blame my graduate school days. Anyway…onto why I love this version of Pride and Prejudice.

I love this version because the show took good care of the supporting cast. Sometimes with other Pride and Prejudice adaptions, Charlotte is boiled down and not given much for the audience to care about. In this version, not only does Charlotte NOT marry Mr. Collins (though this Mr. Collins is very sweet) but also she works for him. Which makes a lot more sense. I really enjoyed those details. I also like that Lydia is given more depth than other versions. We get some background on why she acts the way she does. Some versions like to make Lydia silly or even stupid, but I always thought of Lydia as naive. Good headstrong for her own good. I love the show gave her more depth as well.

This is definitely worth the watch. I believe it is still up on the internet and even on the Showtime app for some reason. Either way…just watch!

Lost in Austen

download (3)

This is less about liking the idea and more I am completely vain. Let me explain. If you have never seen this version…its less Elizabeth and Darcy and more..

HEY rabid fangirl! Can you imagine if you were transported into the Pride and Prejudice story? Now is your chance!

It is that type of adaption. A girl named Amanda (see why I like it) who is obsessed with Pride and Prejudice (Darcy). One day Elizabeth Bennett shows up through the wall in her bathroom. They switch sides and Amanda gets to live her favorite book. How do you think, things go?

Not too many people talk about this miniseries, but I remember finding it hilarious. The story is still there even though Elizabeth does not really exist. She off being modern in the year 2008. Amanda ends up living the story with her Darcy. I love how the movie tries to show how unromantic the time Pride and Prejudice was set. We have a lot more to get us through than these people do. I also love that she realizes how annoying Darcy could be. We tend to overdramatize the idea of Mr. Darcy.  If he was a real person, (cough Tom Lefroy cough) he must have been so annoying to deal with. I love that this movie points that out. It is also the ultimate fanfiction experience, which I love to watch.

It is not well known, but I think it is a good chapter in the Pride and Prejudice storybook.

So many different mediums have covered the Pride and Prejudice story. I know there is a zombie version coming out soon and I still need to watch Death Comes to Pemberley (on my Netflix as we speak) but yes, the story of Pride and Prejudice will, more than likely, never die. I wonder if Jane Austen even knew that what she was writing would be held to such high regard far beyond her years.

I’d like to think she did know. She knows and she finds it really weird.

Thanks for reading! The randomness has ended for the week. I hope you enjoyed!

Reflection of Ourselves: Are we the Worst for Watching Reality Television?

1.164225

Welcome back! This blog was supposed to be last week, but the new month sparked some creativity in me and well…things happen people. That is all I will say. However, here we are. I write this blog as I watch a marathon of Cake Boss. Another reality show.  Reality shows seem to be required television viewing. Even if you try to run away or ignore it…you will be caught. Reality shows are gonna get you.

Where am I going with this? Glad you asked. Reality shows are the norm on the television landscape. We all watch regardless if we want to or not. What does that mean about us?

Are reality shows the worst or are we the worst for watching them?

I think as I watch the Real Housewives try to throw wine in each other’s faces about this question.  Well…that and why am I watching random rich people throwing wine in each other’s face? What about this is appealing to the public. Same with shows like Cake Boss. What is it about people making cakes that makes me watch for hours on end? I cannot speak for everyone, but I have done some soul searching on this topic. This is what I have come up with that maybe you agree with or maybe you do not.

I think we watch these shows because it gives us a new view. Something new to look at. Sure, we could watch the news or documentaries for a new viewpoint on the world but a reality show is quicker and more entertaining. It is our weird little obsession with voyeurism. We love seeing the world through different lenses. Too bad those lenses can be completely and morally bankrupt.

I like to watch reality shows because it is completely mindless. Sometimes I need a break from my constantly racing mind. I guess I also watch reality shows because I compare myself to the crazy people who popular this genre. When I watched Here Comes Honey Boo Boo (I know. That is so bad. That family was so normal…then…ew.) I used to think that I have to be ok since I was not like them.

Which makes me think we are the worst for watching them. We watch these shows to compare our lives to theirs.  In turn, these people get more ratings and get more famous. Which leads to more episodes to watch and for our brains to rot.  Shows like Keeping Up with the Kardashians and WAGS are generally hated, but we still watch. We watch to compare our lives. We judge. We feel better. They get ratings. Popularity. Money. It is a weird crazy circle.

That is one thought I had. Then I thought about one show I watch.

There are reality shows out there that are not mindless. There are shows that come into the reality show genre that are not vapid. Some are positive and some are sad. Some bring viewers into a world that will never experience. We, as viewers, actually learn and apply what we learn to our lives. These shows brighten or world lens.

One example of this? The Little Couple on TLC. This show does not exploit the fact they are little people. They teach the audience what it is like to live in a world designed for normal statured people. Not just that but they do it with many laughs as well. These types of reality shows are few, but they do exist. Liking reality shows with a positive spin cannot make us horrible, right?

The reality shows landscape is full of women and men doing stupid things to become famous. However, for every vapid reality star (Kardashians) there are people who are trying to make a positive difference in the world (The Little Couple).

Are we terrible for watching reality shows then? I think the jury is out on that.

What do you think? Leave a comment below! Stick around. I’m going to highlight the most positive aspects of reality television in the next blog post. It is time you guys got to know Dr. Jen Arnold and Bill Klein and their newly published book.

Until then the randomness has ended. I hope you enjoyed!

Ain’t No Party Like an S Club Party: Coming Full Circle

413VQNFA82L._SY300_

Welcome back to the randomness! This, my dear friends, is going to the last entry into ‘fake band’ month! It has been a fun ride. I have been jumping around all the decades and found that television bands are a rarity now that should be brought back to mainstream television.  While I get to working on that, here is the final entry for the month.

We have come full circle. We started with a band that became famous through a television show and we are ending with a band that became famous through a television show. Ta dah!

S Club 7.

The same people who gave us S Club 7 brought us The Spice Girls (also my first major music obsession as a kid).  Their manager, Simon Fuller, found Tina, Paul, Rachel, Jo, Hannah, Bradley and Jon and created a television show where they go to Miami for a record deal. It aired on the BBC and in America on Fox Family.  Over 90 million viewers in 100 countries watched the show.   Much like The Monkees, the show was an exaggerated form of their real personality.  In fact, the show was compared to The Monkees! The vice president of Fox Family at the time said that the show was relationship driven and more sophisticated (uh…sure. The Monkees show did not take itself so seriously. That is why it is so well loved even today. Just saying.)

There were four more seasons, but I only remember the first season. That was around the time Fox Family changed hands and the programming changed.  I do remember the music and I can still sing the theme song to you (do you want me too? No. Ok. I will be over here now).  This band is fake and real at the same time.

Let me explain. The singers could sing and fit the traits of the average late 90’s post grunge pop band.  However, without that show, we would not be here talking about them right now.  Let us not pretend that is what made them famous. It was being on television every week pushing their songs onto preteens that did not know they were being sold to. I am one of those preteens. The show is one big album sale each week…with jokes.

Like California Dreams, I remember the music (I owned their first album) but I do not remember the actual plot of the television show. I have a feeling it did not matter. It was there to sell a product. Ok, I sound a bit…bitter.

I am not though. I still enjoy their music and I admire taking The Monkees marketing plan and reworking it for a new generation. Hats off to that production team.  Looking at the plans they put in place for them now, it looks so calculated and not as much fun. I thought I found this band by accident, but I was actually targeted. My preteen self is hurt.

I hear they are back on tour together. Reunion tour of sorts. I wonder if a new television show would still sell on American TV today? One’s mind can wander…

I listened to the album that connects to the first season and many of the hits still come back to me. I am brought back to a place of extreme innocence. It is a nice place to visit sometimes.

Best songs by S Club 7? “Two in a Million”, “S Club Party” and “I really Miss You”.  Those songs stand out to me because those are the songs they sang the most.  Check out the theme song below! I am positive you will remember this song!

That is it for S Club 7. The show is hard to find and I feel like this fake band eclipsed their own show.

s-club-7-s-club-7-in-miami-30384696-1024-768

Well, that is the end of fake band month. I can only hope that fake bands make an appearance back on the pop culture scene. Well, for adults at least. I see you, Disney.

Hope you enjoyed! If you can think of any bands, I did not mention this month leave a comment below! Nothing makes me happier than watching a new television show!

Until then the randomness and fake band month has ended. Hope you enjoyed!

Good Vibrations: California Dreams

download (1)

Hello and welcome back to the randomness! This is the closing ceremonies of ‘fake band’ month! This last ‘fake band’ has left a strong impression on my brain.  A lot of my childhood was spent watching this television show after school and during the summer months.

Here is the rub.  I have such strong memories of the cast, some of the music but none of the episodes.  Even weirder, I have strong memories of watching this show after school on the Superstation aka TBS but turns out…never aired on TBS. Then I thought it aired on Disney Afternoons with Brotherly Love. Nope. Did not air there either.

It was a NBC Saturday morning teen show.

Huh. My strong memory has failed me.

The show was California Dreams. It aired on the teen block for NBC Saturdays. I have no recollection of watching it there.

California Dreams was created by Brett Dewey and Ronald B. Solomon and was produced by Peter Engel of Saved by the Bell fame (sensing a trend here).  It aired from 1992-1996 for an impressive 78 episodes. Why impressive? Teen shows like this back in the day did not last long. Look at Saved by the Bell! Not that many episodes exist out there (Ignoring Miss Bliss and the College Years of course).

The show stared out with the Garrison Family and their kids who had started a band. This family would not even last past season two.  They reworked the show to write out the Garrison family and include people who did not really have a connection to the Garrisons. The show now only covered a set a friends that just happen to be in a band called California Dreams. The show centers on this band and the teen issues they face together. There are pairings that I do remember. Mostly Jake and Tiffani because I’ve always had a thing for the bad (secretly good) guy and sweet girl (hmmm….).

bf9523c98ce2fc031e67400e4456bb0e

The reason I am not going in deeper into this show is because it is a common set up. The Disney Channel still uses this.  I have seen this show many times as a kid. I have strong feelings about this show. I see the opening credits and I go back to a very happy place of being carefree and only worrying about getting my homework done.

That might be why I have such a strong connection to this show.  It is not the content that I remember it is the idea of the show. It was in my life during a time where I was purely a kid. I had no real worries and my biggest activity was riding my bike around town with my best friends. Going to the pool. Going down the shore. I hear the theme song to this show and I go back to that place.

So, I think this band and show holds a place in my heart. Not for the reasons I gave for the other bands but for the feeling it conjures.

I did find a YouTube video that had ALL of their songs (over 40 songs!!!).  I started to listen to them and a few do ring a few bells. None are covers and they are not that bad. It is very 90’s soft inoffensive rock.  Luckily, I am a secret fan of that type of music (Hello Boz Scaggs!).

I think my top three favorite are ‘She’s Not You’, ‘Must be Love’ and ‘Don’t Wake Me Up (California Dreams)’. I highly recommend that you check out the songs. I am still going through them as I write this and it is really catchy and creative.

The show is available on Shout! DVDs and the songs are available online (many fans still exist for this show).  Check out the theme and some of their songs below.

That concludes this look into California Dreams. A show that I have no real recollection of but I have strong feelings for. Reminds me of a first crush. You have strong feelings about the event but do not remember why you had that crush in the first place. That is my relationship with the show and band of California Dreams.

Since I do not have access to episodes and I am poor that is all for California Dreams. To conclude this month of ‘fake band’ love I will be looking at another band that evokes strong feelings in me.Just a little British band that is back on tour as we speak. Some might argue that they were not fake but let us not kid ourselves. This band followed The Monkees formula to success.

Hope you enjoyed and I will see you tomorrow!

Rollercoaster Junkie: My Thoughts on Why ShondaLand is the Best Rollercoaster Ride on Television

tumblr_nnksw1ZKuU1rzzlilo1_540

Welcome back to the randomness that is my blog. What is on deck today?

The Human Factor

Let me explain. I am a fan of television. That is no secret.

If it is to you then…hello. Are you lost?

Anyway, within the past two years, I have been sucked into a rollercoaster also known as ShondaLand.

What is ShondaLand? It is a torturous merry-go-round of characters, plots and situations that make me laugh, cry and want to throw things at its creator.

ShondaLand is the production company founded by writer, producer and director Shonda Rhimes. You know her. She has created some intense, funny, upsetting and generally life ruining television. It takes a form in Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder.

On many social media networks, I have noticed that people are either upset or confused by how their favorite characters and plots are being written. Fans have even gotten to the point of swearing off their favorite Shondaland shows.

Get to the Point…

Right. I am here to defend the ShondaLand shows. Yes, me. Someone who complains about almost every plot point of every television show I have ever come across.

Yes. Me.

I am going to defend her shows and for once, it won’t be long winded. I swear.

The reason why I love Shonda Rhimes so much? The human factor. Yes. The human factor. No matter how crazy the premise, plot point or action, there is always a human factor present. That is what I think is missing from many shows (hour-long dramas with crazy plots…to be exact). The ability for an audience to attach themselves and relate to a character or situation depends on how human you make the show.

No matter how angry I get when a character dies or does something insane, I stick with them. I know that the crazy does not come out of nowhere. The characters have rich backstories that are discussed and used in future storylines. Storylines also have the human factor.

Even on Scandal. For instance, for a long time Huck came across as insane, aloof and well…not very friendly. However, we get clues and hints leading up to a huge episode that makes the audience understand his motivations. The show does not drop those motivations either. They use plot points to build his characters backstory and future actions up to the audience.

The human factor is what I truly love about ShondaLand shows. Without that human factor? We would not care so much when she manages to kill off half of the new staff at Seattle Grace. We would not care why a badass defense attorney would be so vulnerable. We also would not care about the best fixer in Washington, DC and her affair with a married president.

Without the human factor, that is the true star in ShondaLand shows, we would have nothing to complain about or love.

I’m positive that even the people that have had enough will be there in September to watch their favorites pick up the pieces and move on. I know I will.

What do you think? Do you believe in the human factor or do you like your favorite characters to be a bit dark and mysterious or a multi-million dollar superhero. Leave me a comment below! Until then…the randomness has ended. Hope you enjoyed the ride.

Byact16IgAAViy9-672x372

Series Finale Hell and Heaven

broken_heart_by_fastreflex-1

Welcome back to the randomness. Today, my dear friends, I am thinking about endings. I guess finishing up a bunch of shows this year made me take a closer look at the television finale.

What I noticed was, even if a show was amazing sometimes that series finale can make or break its reputation for generations of television watchers to come.

Here is a list of the two shows that broke my heart with their finales and one that still makes me laugh.

Why the one that makes me laugh? Mostly because I believe, it is darkest before the dawn. I believe in that silver lining. Some shows already were terrible so the finale just put the icing on the cake.

So…without further ado…

MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD

MY HEART IS BREAKING FOR….

How I Met Your Mother

himym-finale-hed-2014

The Slap Bet. Yellow Umbrella. Swarkles.. So many different words bring up good memories of How I Met Your Mother.  A show that told a long mystery with lots of detours that was SUPPOSED to lead towards the lead character, Ted, meeting his wife, Tracy.

The show went from being beloved to hated within an hour of its final episode.  It has been over a year since this show ended and I still can’t bring myself to watch any episodes. Killing off the mother and breaking up a popular couple not only killed the shows rerun hopes but killed any hope of fans wanting to watch How I Met Your Dad.

Killing off the mother made no sense. The whole show was about Ted’s journey to adulthood and to his wife. It has many detours and lots of mistakes but all those lessons led him to the love of his life…Tracy.

That final episode was a huge slap. Not only did they kill off the mother but broke up one of the most popular couples (Barney and Robin) to have Ted hook up with Robin in the end.

 It was worse than a slap. It was a punch to the gut. No one wanted the blue horn. They wanted a happy yellow umbrella. They wanted to see Robin and Barney happy. They wanted Marshall and Lily doing more with their lives.

Why trust anything these showrunners come up with again?

A show that had so many beautiful scenes and funny moments destroyed in seconds. It will always be a huge shame and maybe someday I can watch again without wanting to punch a wall or complain on the internet. However, that day is not today.

Here is the speech that still takes my breath away. Ted and the Mother (Tracy) were soulmates and it should have ended on the train platform. The creators should have always known that.

Roseanne

roseanne

Roseanne is one of those shows that showed a side of America that most sitcoms did not. It was the working class in its purest form. The Connor family had to deal with low paying jobs, marriage, kids and crazy family issues but that resonated with American audiences. Roseanne was dramatic but always remembered to show the funny in the dramatic.

Over time the show changed (it has to grow I give it that) but it got further from reality. The final season has the Connor family winning the lottery and getting anything they want. However, in the last episode it turns out that it was all Roseanne’s novel.

Dan, her husband, is dead. Her daughters have different lives as well. Mark is with Darlene and Becky is with David. Jackie, her sister, is gay and does not chase men around like we though (well…that one was not as upsetting. It was just an odd choice at the end). Audiences did not see it coming. Everything we known as an audience was a lie.

I understand the motivation behind that weird last season. Ratings were sinking. She needed to do something interesting to grab the attention of the audience. In the end, she found a big way to make sure her show would never be forgotten.

It was a kick in the gut having Dan die. Roseanne without Dan does not feel right. It feels wrong. It hurts. It was an incredibly sad way to end this show. It is as if they took the dramatic but forgot to bring the funny the show was known for during its run.

It makes it harder to watch reruns and hear characters talk about the future. That finale gave the show an extra layer of sadness that I do not think it needed.

Here is an video of that last scene. The sadness just jumps through the screen and it still breaks my heart.

MY HEART IS BREAKING…FROM LAUGHTER!

GOSSIP GIRL

79282-gossip-girl-gossip-girl

This series finale is not as upsetting as HIMYM or Roseanne. No. It is mostly a sigh of relief. A confused very funny sigh of relief.  Ok. I laugh at my butt off at this finale. Then again, the show is a bit of a joke to begin with.

Gossip Girl, one of CW’s flagship shows, grabbed the attention of teenagers and 20-somethings, with its crazy soap storylines and just as crazy couples. Mostly it centered on a group of rich spoiled kids and one outsider while they navigated their world with someone named ‘gossip girl’ always watching their every move.

The show was a hotbed of crazy ‘shippers’ and terrible writing (the actors are awesome and I hope for nothing but the best for all of them).  The ending of this show is debated even today. Not only does it not make sense but also to this day even the actors make fun of it themselves. The show has rewatchability but as a comedy….only.

No matter how many different ways you watch the show Dan (the outsider turned insider) being Gossip Girl will never make sense. Considering he was always never around when Gossip Girl posted but he could not have constantly outed himself on so many occasions. It does not make sense. Even in the novels this show is based on, gossip girl is never revealed. It is up to the audience to make their assumptions. Maybe the show should have went with that instead of naming someone. Enjoy the antics of these characters and insane situations but do not expect anything in the finale to make sense.

heartbroken

That is my list! Those two shows reputations have forever changed how I look at their reruns. Then you have the other show that will always make me smile and shake my head. Regretting the time I spent watching but so glad that I did.

What shows finales changed your mind over the years? Tell me in the comments below! I’m always interested in hearing other opinions on television shows and their finales. In the meantime, the randomness has ended. Hope you enjoyed.