Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Supergirl Season 2 'Welcome to Earth' Review

After the departure of Superman, Supergirl continues to develop its new aesthetic with themes of prejudice, persecution and explored the conflicting forces between the human and alien society.

Melissa Benoist fabulously showcased Kara's dorkiness when she practically geeks out when she meets the President, asking Alex and Hank if they could call her if she says anything else cool.

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The revelation that the unconscious Kryptonian was indeed a citizen of the planet- Daxam, the opposing force to Krypton,  related to the main theme of the episode, which questioned who do you become when you judge the minority of beings who haven't caused the destruction, by those who have?

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It was fantastic to see Alex delving into her own journey when she encounters a detective who is an advocate for the alien community. She questions her role in the DEO, and admits to judging aliens by the majority of their communities destructive nature. 

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At the moment, James feels like he is at a loose end in terms of where his character is heading towards and what his objective is. But there was an intriguing cliffhanger when Hank discovered that he was not the only martian to have survived. 

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There was some brilliant character developments, fantastic comedy from Kara and the themes raised interesting questions about what rights humans have over aliens, and whether aliens have a right to keep their identities secret. 

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Supergirl Season 2 'The Last Children of Supergirl' Review

Season 2 is faring greater with its super villains- Metallo and Catmus, as they cause a realistic threat to the last Kryptonians. It was incredibly endearing for an introduction to witness Supergirl and Superman teaming up to defeat the city's antagonists. 

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Reasonably, Superman's presence provided some engaging conflict between Kara and Alex, especially when Kara suggests she might move to Metropolis to feel more connected to who she is. From Alex's perspective, I understood her anger towards Kara, she has been the one who has taken care of her and kept anchored to humanity, whereas Superman abandoned Kara without explanation.

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Other major changes to the season include Cat deciding to leave Catco to venture onto new adventures. This feels a natural progression for her character as people in reality feel, when they acknowledge that they have achieved all they can and must move on. 

The main themes of the season are shaping up to be about change, evolution and personal discovery. A truthful development for the main characters has kept the narrative flowing and the conflict that has risen from uncertainty is a positive outlook for the show.  

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Superman and Hank's tense relationship is a welcomed causality that the writers has presented admirably. We want to recognise what their history is and try to determine who's argument is more favourable.

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Finally, the latest chapter in Supergirl's journey was brimming with charming family scenes. The added layer of conflict through exposition was very compelling, with tense action and Kara's adorable lack of insults contributed to her brilliant humour. The villains of this season still need to be developed to bring weight and truthful conflict to our heroes, but their new upgrade gave them a higher level of threat and texture to their individual characters.

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Supergirl Season 2 "The Adventures of Supergirl" Review

Superheroes are everywhere; comics, film, television and radio. They inhabit our dreams and inspire our decisions. What does Supergirl in particular give to the audience? An honest, intelligent, witty, clumsy, strong and independent character who has more humility than the average person could ever possess.

Even though the main protagonist- Kara Danvers, was born on the planet Krypton, she possesses the essence of what a human being should be and expresses the potential of what we can achieve as a species.

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Last season’s story arc built up to a resolution for Kara where she discovered who she was and how she would fit into society. The climax to the first chapter of her story led the audience to ponder how she would develop as a person once she became comfortable in a familiar environment.

There was a nostalgic atmosphere to this opening episode, due to the aesthetically pleasing view of Supergirl and Superman fighting alongside to commit selfless acts of heroism. I pondered what Superman’s role would be and realised that his character would provide some inspiration and subtext to how Kara feels about leading a double life. Does she feel isolated because of her unique abilities? What psychological issues manifest themselves when a being with impossible strength and speed, has the power to cause so much destruction and save lives in disastrous situations?

Here the narrative focuses on at what point a person is supposed to know what they want to achieve with their life? Kara is given many career opportunities that she could explore and ultimately finds the person she has always loved. This presents new challenges with the narrative because the audience will be expecting conflict.

This is presented cleverly through the unpredictability of human fallibility.  Though she is not human, Kara’s wants vary and continue to shift back and forth. Throughout the last season, she was hoping James Olsen and herself would become a couple, when that event finally happens, Kara is confused as to what she truly wants.

Personally, I admired this change in the story because it was unexpected, truthful to human behaviour and brought Kara to a state of self-awareness where she asked herself what she truly desired.
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With every drama serial opener, there are high expectations of how fresh the narrative is truly going to be. The story doesn’t feature heavily on the antagonist; an unknown opponent who has been driven to utilising the latest drone technology to achieving his own goals of mutually assured destruction.

Having the protagonist reach a brick wall is a striking and ambitious but natural progression for their character arc because the audience becomes more invested with how that character deals with new challenges, ones we face everyday.

The protagonist  is beginning to learn that she has to evolve, take risks and let her decisions guide her to where she needs to go. What might it mean for the audience if the main character isn’t sure of where her fictional existence is heading towards? It makes it exciting and enables her character to evolve and challenge herself.

A nostalgic, meaningful, unpredictable and funny season opener for the most endearing superhero on mainstream television.

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children Review

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Genius Tim Burton returns with the film adaptation of Ransom Riggs best-selling novel. The creative influence of Mr Burton and Riggs imaginative narrative makes this film an immersive and joyful experience. 

Now I wanted to see the film because it was directed by Tim Burton but after viewing the film, it has prompted me to read all three books. The story is very peculiar indeed and that is what makes it so unique and stand out from other fantasy adventure films.

Jacob Portman is a very truthful representation of a teenager who doesn't know where he fits in the world and his part in it. The relationship between his Grandfather and himself is at the centre of the tale as Jacob feels like his Grandfather is the only one who respected him as an individual and wanted him to find wonder and adventure in his life. The Peculiar Children are strangely wonderful, charming and sweet. Their fantastical abilities provide excitement and a magical wonder of how mesmerising life could be if these powers actually existed.

Adding to this, the plot involves a fantastic opposing force called Hollows which consume the eyes of Peculiars to maintain their humanity so ultimately the leader- Mr Baron, can achieve immortality. They are brutal and savage villains with a striking and Gothic visual presence. 

It is the dedication and love that the children have for Miss Peregrine which motivates them to defeat the Hollows with an epic skeleton vs Hollow battle taking place at a funfair in Blackpool! This scene made me positively giddy with childish glee and is certainly a masterpiece in animation and stop motion.

The inclusion of visual effects to portray the time loops and the Hollows were breathtaking and everyone involved should be applauded for making this unique and fantastical world take its form in a beautiful, moving and weird way.