Homeland Recap: 8×10 “Designated Driver”

Previously on Homeland: Carrie got a ride from an old contact named Arman; Tasneem blamed Balach, Haqqani’s right hand, for letting Jalal take over the Taliban; Balach told Jalal that Haqqani had wanted peace; Carrie tricked poor incompetent Jenna into revealing the location of the safe house, then had the American team there arrested by Pakistani authorities to buy herself time; Tasneem decided the best way to protect her country was to protect Jalal; General Aziz amassed vehicles on the border with nukes in them; and Carrie got the flight recorder, but Yevgeny tranquilized her and took it from her. (You’ll remember he took a slight break first to make out with her, but that doesn’t get into the previouslies, sadly.)

Credits. For some reason the closed captioners attribute Saul’s voiceover lines during the credits to Saul, but when Quinn yells, “Is there no fucking line?” they just quote him as “[man]”. Um, rude!

Continue reading →

Oscars 2021: Who Will Win, Who Should Win

Normally, around this time of year, I would be lodging many complaints about who was nominated at the Oscars: too white, too male, too many white male biopics. But this is not a normal year in any sense. Most of the traditional Oscar bait was pushed off until we can see it in theaters again, which means that most of the nominees are more indie, and, in my opinion, more deserving than usual. Stories that usually wouldn’t gain traction with the Academy–movies made by and about women, biopics about lesser-known and more radical pockets of history, smaller stories about fringe subcultures and the lives of American immigrants–are now set to sweep the Oscars on Sunday night.

Continue reading →

Homeland Recap: 8×09 “In Full Flight”

Previously on Homeland: Max was shot right before Carrie’s eyes, and Saul convinced her to come in, but Mike thought she was a defector because of the whole running-off-with-a-Russian-agent thing; Jalal Haqqani claimed to have killed the President and President Hayes vowed to invade Pakistan if they didn’t turn him over; Carrie got a lead on the black box, and demanded that no one question her loyalty; when the soldiers who were with Saul tried to handcuff her, she ran off with Yevgeny again and told him she knew where the black box was.

Spoiler alert: I am a BIG FAN of this episode. If you have been reading my previous recaps you’ll probably guess why!

Continue reading →

BuffyWatch: Season 4, Episodes 21-22

Janes (a True Stan) and Nerdy Spice (a New Fan) are watching all of Buffy together and comparing notes.

Season 4, Episode 21 “Primeval”

We pick up where we left off: Riley is on a suicide mission and facing Adam alone. Adam is pontificating about his destiny while Riley just sort of stares at him blankly. Which is honestly nothing new for Riley, but we’re supposed to think it’s super weird and a sign that he’s been brainwashed. Adam explains that Maggie (aka “Mother,” ew) put a chip in Riley’s central nervous system. “It’s chips all around then,” says Spike, who almost makes this whole plotline tolerable. 

Continue reading →

BuffyWatch: Season 4, Episodes 16-18

Janes (a True Stan) and Nerdy Spice (a New Fan) are watching all of Buffy together and comparing notes. Warning: May contain spoilers for later episodes!

Note to our readers: Like many Buffy fans, we’ve been saddened to see the allegations about Joss Whedon in the last couple of weeks. We addressed our complicated relationship with the series back in 2017, when his ex-wife Kai Cole spoke out against him. We wrote: “Joss doesn’t own Buffy anymore, but even if he did, any problems with its feminism have already been discussed by its fandom (and/or Buffy Studies scholars) at length. Buffyheads have known for a long time that Buffy sprung from a very flawed creator–we just didn’t know how flawed… These allegations are less a revelation, and more a reminder, that Joss Whedon is not the great white male savior, nor does he need to be. Because Buffy has become bigger than its creator, if only because it changed so many lives.”

We stand with all survivors of abuse. We love Buffy, its fandom, and all of you, even if we no longer love Joss. Thank you for reading!

Continue reading →

Homeland Recap: 8×7 “F**ker Shot Me”

Previously on Homeland: Hayes told G’ulom not to execute 300 men in a stadium, but then gave up; Haqqani turned himself in in exchange for G’ulom freeing the men; Carrie asked Yevgeny for help finding Max; Saul sent Carrie home for lying to him about Yevgeny–but she snuck off the jetway and made her escape in a getaway car driven by Yevgeny.

Side note: It’s so interesting hearing soundbites from as early as season 2 (Carrie telling Brody he’s a traitor) in the credits. So much has happened in these 8 years. And there’s a snippet of Carrie saying “This whole country went stupid crazy after 9/11” shortly after the classic snippet of her saying “I missed something once before” specifically about 9/11, to justify spying on Brody.

Continue reading →

BuffyWatch: Season 4, Episodes 13-15

Janes (a True Stan) and Nerdy Spice (a New Fan) are watching all of Buffy together and comparing notes. Warning: May contain spoilers for later episodes!

Season 4, Episode 13 “The I In Team”

Willow is lonely. You know this because she’s reduced to spending an evening playing poker with Xander and Anya. And if you’re wondering whether it’s awkward to third-wheel with Xander and Anya, Willow learns the answer when she says the word “spanking” in an innocent context, and Anya gives way too enthusiastic a response. Meanwhile, Buffy is in new-love glow, and Willow is trying not to be jealous once again. Of course, I am spoiled about this show just enough to know that Willow won’t be a Miss Lonelyhearts for very long. Willow and Tara are in the early stages of what we know, but Willow doesn’t know, is a courtship. Poor Tara abruptly offers Willow a special “doll’s eye” crystal (no idea what that is) that belonged to her grandmother as a gift, which makes Willow a little uncomfortable, which makes Tara kind of smile awkwardly and ask Willow to “do something” that night. But just as Buffy keeps snubbing  Willow, Willow snubs Tara. Aw, that’s sad.

Continue reading →

Going to Graceland

There’s no way to justify the leap I’m about to make here, so I’ll just get right to it: two of my favorite songs in the world are “Going to Georgia” by The Mountain Goats, from 1994, and “Graceland Too” by Phoebe Bridgers, from 2020—and I think they’re about the same people. Or more accurately, “Graceland Too” takes the things about “Going to Georgia” that are broken, and loves them, and fixes them.

Continue reading →