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Watching: ’13 Reasons Why’.

I just finished watching season one of “13 Reasons Why”.

Please note, the following content may contain emotional triggers.

Early last year, I read Jay Asher’s popular YA novel, “13 Reasons Why” – you can read my full review here – around the same time it debuted as a TV series on Netflix. I heard about how controversial it was, how difficult it was to watch.

But I read the book in just two days.

“13 Reasons Why” – the book and the series – is a story told from the perspective of Hannah, a high school student who killed herself. Before she ended her life, she recorded the 13 reasons why on a series of cassette tapes, and left instructions on how it should be delivered.

She intended for everyone who hurt her understand what they did and how it negatively affected her life. In the book and the series, we are “hearing” the tapes through Clay Jensen – a character that knew, liked, and worked with Hannah.

This is pretty much where the similarities between the book and the series stop. I completely understand that they had to adapt the story for TV, but it was really so, so different from the book.

No spoilers – but the book really doesn’t go into the details of Hannah’s parents or family life. It also doesn’t really get into the details of Hannah’s “friends” nor does it discuss their reaction to the tapes.

In the book, we simply get Clay’s reaction, and not much else (which makes for a perfectly complete story).

I’ll admit, the series was difficult to watch at times. The story is heartbreaking, and sadly, I know it’s not far from how many teenagers currently experience high school. I cannot explain how many times I’ve thanked the universe for not inventing smartphones and/or social media before I graduated from high school. I would have been miserable.

The one thing I disagreed with in the series is that… they don’t depict Hannah as having mental problems. I cannot sit here and say that everyone who commits suicide was mentally ill, but I also don’t think it’s something we can just say, well if we would have been nicer to that person, they would still be here today.

Again, maybe I’m wrong on this, but I would hate to think that people would watch the series and think a single date or encounter might end someone’s life.

The end of the series definitely left more to be desired, which doesn’t make sense for the book. But, there’s already a season two and I’ve got a few ideas what it will entail. However, I do think you have to be in the right head space to watch it. I binged it, and definitely needed to get outside and do something positive before going to bed.

Whether you watch the series or not, I know that no matter what – high school is tough. Teenagers go through a lot, especially today, and it’s not a bad lesson to learn that we should all treat each other a little better.

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Celebrating 20 years of ‘Sex and the City’!

Photo credit: HBO – one of my favorite scenes from the series.

This week, fans of “Sex and the City” have been celebrating its 20th anniversary – can you believe it?

HBO’s iconic series debuted in 1998, when I was in 8th grade. We didn’t have HBO at my house growing up, so I didn’t come across the series until I was a junior in high school, when I went on a college visit to Miami of Ohio.

It was 2001, and I saw an episode on DVD – I’m pretty sure I fell asleep before the episode was over. To be honest, I didn’t know a whole lot about dating when I was 17, and I certainly knew nothing about sex.

But by the time I went to college, I’d scrounged up all of the available seasons on DVDs and brought them to Louisiana. The episodes made me laugh, and I started to see why so many people loved the show so much – they spoke so honestly about dating, and in college, I really needed that.

My DVDs also came in handy when I applied to get a new roommate during my second semester of freshman year. The only open bed available was with someone who’d scored a room alone – she was probably REALLY disappointed when I showed up with my boxes of crap on a random weeknight.

Until I showed her my SATC collection and told her she was welcome to watch them anytime. We watched loads of episodes together.

It’s difficult to believe now, but SATC changed the dialogue about sex  and dating, and it was one of the first shows (aside from “The Mary Tyler Moore Show”) that put single, career-driven women at the forefront.

It also carved a larger path for sex columnists, given that SATC’s main character has a weekly column titled, “Sex and the City”. I quickly became a fan of Natalie Krisnky’s writing, who was the sex columnist for Yale’s campus newspaper until 2004.

I also wrote the relationship column for the LSU paper, and while that was not the start of my publishing career, it gave me a place to vent about my dating troubles, and gave me confidence to start this blog, and eventually publish multiple books on the topic of love, sex, and relationships.

Based on the best-selling novel by Candace Bushnell, SATC gave us four women that were relatable, yet far enough out-of-reach that we could drool over their fashion, apartments, and exclusive access to New York City.

In the span of six seasons (from 1998-2004), Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, and Charlotte became our best friends, even if only digitally, we related to their love, loss, fun, and fights.

The best part? The writing is timeless. Over the years, SATC episodes covered first dates, baby showers, breakups, and marriage, and even dipped into more serious issues such as cancer, abortion, miscarriage, infidelity, interracial dating, and sexual identity.

No matter the topic, the tone of the show was always hopeful – that we can get through just about anything with the support of our friends and the relationship we ultimately have with ourself, and that’s a lesson that never comes too late.

As part of a week-long celebration, the E! Network has been playing all of the SATC episodes, and although I have the entire series on DVD (I was gifted an entirely new set after wearing out the first set), it’s fun to just turn on the TV and see all of the episodes I’ve watched countless times – I could probably recite most of them.

For this post, I was trying so hard to think of my all-time favorite episode, but it changes depending on what I’m going through at the time.

Right now, I can definitely relate to “A Woman’s Right to Shoes” (season 6, episode 9) when Carrie attends a baby shower and is asked to remove her Manolos – they get stolen, and she gets “shoe shamed” when she asks for a new pair from the hostess.

I have also always loved “Hot Child in the City” (season 3, episode 15) where all of the women face something from their childhood – whether it’s scooters and sunbathing or getting braces.

Just a few episodes later, in “Cock a Doodle Do”, Samantha goes to WAR with transsexuals on her block – it involves eggs and lots of yelling, but eventually they makeup and throw a rooftop party.

I never really did like any of Carrie’s boyfriends, not Berger or The Russian – I only like Mr. Big. One of my favorite episodes with him is “I Heart N.Y.” (Season 4, episode 18) when he’s getting ready to move to Napa. There’s pizza in an empty apartment, and several references to “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” and it’s perfect.

SATC also gave us some epic one-liners, including:

  • When real people fall down in life, they get right back up and keep on walking.
  • Being single used to mean that nobody wanted you. Now it means that you’re pretty sexy and you’re taking your time deciding how you want your life to be and who you want to spend it with.
  • They say nothing lasts forever; dreams change, trends come and go, but friendships never go out of style.
  • I am someone who is looking for love. Real love. Ridiculous, inconvenient, consuming, can’t-live-without-each-other love.
  • Maybe the best any of us can do is not to quit, play the hand we’ve been given, and accessorize the outfit we’ve got.

I will probably spend a large chunk of my weekend watching SATC without regret. But I’d love to know, what were some of your favorite moments of the show? Or, did it change your life in some way? Give you confidence for a career move? Help you meet new friends?

Let me know in the comments! Have a great weekend everyone!

Yep, I saw ‘Baywatch’.

The good-looking cast of “Baywatch”.

My original plans for Memorial Day Weekend included going to the pool and getting my tan on… and that’s about it. But, leave it to Austin, Texas to RAIN the entire weekend, so I made a list of alternative, indoor plans, which included seeing “Baywatch”.

I skipped over to the Drafthouse Friday night, ordered a Whiskey Banana Split shake and fries (okay and a bacon cheeseburger, too) and was ready to see just how terrible this movie was. But, I actually liked it!

Here’s the scoop from IMDB: Devoted lifeguard Mitch Buchanan (Dwayne Johnson) butts heads with a brash new recruit (Zac Efron). Together, they uncover a local criminal plot that threatens the future of the Bay.

Honestly, I’ve never seen the original “Baywatch” television show, which probably would have made the movie even funnier. But it was still really obvious that this movie was a clear spoof on “Baywatch”, and in some ways, an homage.

So yes, there’s the classic slow-motion running, the hot bodies, and the fact that LIFEGUARDS are going way out of their way to save lives, along with crimes, mysteries, and petty theft along the bay. They take themselves REAL serious.

The part I didn’t expect was Zac Efron’s character, Matt Brody, was obviously making fun of olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte. It wasn’t a subtle blow either – he had the grill, the gold medals, the drunk reputation, and ruined his career after going overseas to compete and selfishly blowing it for his team. Wow.

As part of his probation, he has to work as a lifeguard (which is also part of a bigger coverup that the Baywatch lifeguards are about to discover, but don’t worry, no spoilers!). That was the other bit of a shocker – that there was an actual plot, and a few of the cast members from the original “Baywatch” series made some cameos.

Sure, it was a cheesy movie – but I think that’s to be expected, and I ended up laughing a lot. Not bad for a Friday night leading right into summer! And hey, if you’re going to the Drafthouse anytime soon – try the Whiskey Banana Split shake; totally delish!

‘Mariah’s World’: We Belong Together.

THe last curtain call.

The last curtain call.

I am feeling so refreshed after a nice long-feeling weekend, although I did spend a lot of time on Twitter when I probably shouldn’t have.

But, at last! We’ve reached it to the finale of “Mariah’s World”, a day I never thought would come, as it has been a long, fake journey that we’ve followed Mariah on, and here, 8 hours of edited footage later, we know nothing more than what we did before about her: she’s a diva, has a worthless staff, and she split from James Packer.

So, let’s get to the episode! It’s a few days before the last stop on the tour, and the team is trying to find ways for Tanaka to earn his keep since he’s still on tour, but cannot dance. So, he’s serving as a co-creative director, which I’m sure makes the actual creative director really thrilled.

Mariah takes her kids on safari, in full on stripper heels because she doesn’t “own flats”.

Before the last show, Mariah starts thinking about what she’s going to do next – she says she wants to spend more time with her children and get back into the studio to create. The last show goes flawlessly, and at the end of it, the staff is pretty emotional.

Tanaka mentions something to Anthony (the creative director) about “co-creating” with him, and Anthony sort of rolls his eyes and looks the other way. When Tanaka asks Stella about it, Stella confirms that they haven’t told Anthony about it. Oh, awesome.

Later, Stella shows up at Mariah’s house, saying there are three options for dates for the wedding, but Mariah isn’t available on any of them. It is my understanding that these dates are coming from the prenuptial agreement? I have no idea how any of that works, but it creates this awkward scene where Mariah and Stella are just sort of staring at each other and there’s no mention of James, or calling him, and Stella is all, “Well the universe has plot twists”…

Like I hope I haven’t watched this damn show for two months to be told the break up was caused by THE UNIVERSE.

A few days later, Mariah heads into the studio to do some writing and recording. And then the team heads to Mishka’s birthday party. She’s Stella’s daughter, who is 12, and serves as Mariah’s social media manager. I cannot and will not get over this.

Please note, the party is very similar to any of the ones you saw years ago on MTV’s “My Sweet Sixteen”.

Mariah and Tanaka head out for a walk and end up in this little gazebo thing, and they’re practicing a dance life (uh, isn’t he still injured, or is this a scene they shot later and filled in?). They are sort of slow dancing, and he’s telling her she looks beautiful… and then he’s like, “Are you really going to marry this guy?”

He tells her he just wants her to be happy, and she says some sort of weird rambling thing about how she doesn’t really know what that means, and maybe happiness is different for everyone.

Later, there’s a team meeting where Anthony finds out he’s got a co-creator. And, he’s pissed. But he’s a professional and agrees, the show must go on.

Mariah has a later performance (they don’t say how much later) in Hawaii, and she spends a little time in the studio beforehand. She sings a song she’s just written and it’s about not getting the love you deserve. Stella overhears the song and also notices Mariah left her engagement ring in the booth… mmhmm.

They have a short talk about how Mariah just “can’t do this”, but they don’t reveal any details.

The show in Hawaii goes perfectly, and Tanaka is back on the stage, recovered from his injury.

At the end of the episode, Mariah is on the beach at sunset, and here comes Tanaka, all tan and shirtless, and they kiss on the beach… it can’t be real.

And that’s the end!

I don’t know how much you, the readers, enjoy these TV recaps, but I have hopes of being a TV show reviewer someday, so I’ve got to keep practicing. The next show I’ll be recapping is also on E! (swear they’re not paying me), called “So Cosmo”.

This reality show followers ACTUAL staff members at “Cosmopolitan” magazine, including the Editor-in-Chief, and shows us what it’s like to work there. E! has been showing a “Meet the Cast” extended preview of the show for a few weeks, and it looks pretty entertaining, to say the least. Here’s the official trailer:

Uhh, talk about THIS IS THE BEST IDEA FOR A TELEVISION SHOW, EVER. I would d-i-e to work at “Cosmopolitan”, and this is probably the closest chance I’ll get. “So Cosmo” premiers next Wednesday on E! at 7pm CST.

Thoughts on ‘La La Land’.

I want this to happen to me.

I want this to happen to me.

Last week,  my mom and I ventured to the Drafthouse to see “La La Land”! We were both pretty excited to see this movie, having both been fans of musicals since forever, and well, who doesn’t love Emma Stone? Sorry, I’m not huge on Mr. Gosling (and this is when everyone stops reading).

But anyway, I saw the preview for “La La Land” when I saw “Fantastic Beasts”, and I was immediately hooked. It was clear this was a movie about dreamers, and Hollywood, and entertainment, with lots of dancing – so basically all of my favorite things crammed into a single movie. Yes.

Here’s the plot from IMDB: Mia, an aspiring actress, serves lattes to movie stars in between auditions and Sebastian, a jazz musician, scrapes by playing cocktail party gigs in dingy bars, but as success mounts they are faced with decisions that begin to fray the fragile fabric of their love affair, and the dreams they worked so hard to maintain in each other threaten to rip them apart.

There’s absolutely no question the singing and dancing in this movie is ON POINT. And in my wildest dreams of having my life burst into a musical, I couldn’t quite imagine something as fun as the opening scene where people are literally dancing on top of their cars during rush hour in L.A. Fantastic!

But, there were parts of this movie that were difficult for me to see the reality from the dream (I’m sure a purposeful move), but at times that line was blurred between downright ridiculous to serious and nearly depressing.

Many critics named this flick the “feel-good movie of the year”, and while yes, there were many scenes that had me smiling, I left the theatre closer to tears, and not the good kind. I won’t give any spoilers, but if you’ve seen the movie I’d love to hear your thoughts on the ending!

Would I recommend it? Yes – I mean, if you’re a fan of musicals… and dreamers, too.

HBO's 'The Newsroom', season 3.

HBO’s ‘The Newsroom’, season 3.

I also have to talk about “Newsroom”, season three (the final season), because I spent Monday laying in bed watching it, in its entirety.

It took me a year to watch all three seasons of HBO’s “The Newsroom”, and I’ll admit that I wasn’t really that into it during season one. Frankly, it wasn’t that well-written, and it mostly did the same thing all shows about journalists do – romanticized what it’s like to be one.

But, I stuck with it and season two was grittier, and way better. So, I was really looking forward to season three – except for the fact that it was the last season! There was a part of me that was putting off watching it because I knew it would be that much closer to being over.

Season three is sadly only six episodes, though it was clearly written to be an end, and it was definitely the best season of all of them.

I came across a review of the series finale in The New York Times (don’t click that unless you want to know how things end), and it talked about how the series continued to struggle, from day one, with relevancy, given that it was a show about journalists and their battle with the digital change, and the show itself was covering events from two years prior.

On the one hand, covering events that moved us in real life was hook-worthy… but no one’s mentioning the fact that ACN was the worst news network anyone had seen. They were the last to cover any story, because they were stuck behind their desks and not actually out in the world living it.

So, Will McAvoy can be a charming playboy and a witty-one liner news anchor, but the folks typing the crap didn’t have it together – but they sure did have a love for their craft (or the one they were being paid for).

Nonetheless, it was a fun show to watch – because, well, writers are an interesting breed. I’ve heard, though, that people really enjoyed watching “Scandal” instead, soooo… maybe I should add that to my list!

BBC: ‘Orange is the New Black’.

It should come as NO surprise that I haven’t watched “Orange is the New Black” yet, because 1. I am always behind on the cool stuff, and 2. I don’t have Netflix. And yes, I know it’s cheap – it’s not even about that, so spare me.

I really wanted to read the book before I watched any of the series, because it’s a true story, and the series is based on the book. So, this has been on my list for awhile, and I’m so happy it’s finally a part of the Book Club!

Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison” was written by Piper Kerman and published in 2010. Here’s the book’s description from Amazon.com:

With a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug money ten years before. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and sentenced to fifteen months at the infamous federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut, the well-heeled Smith College alumna is now inmate #11187–424—one of the millions of people who disappear “down the rabbit hole” of the American penal system. From her first strip search to her final release, Kerman learns to navigate this strange world with its strictly enforced codes of behavior and arbitrary rules. She meets women from all walks of life, who surprise her with small tokens of generosity, hard words of wisdom, and simple acts of acceptance. Heartbreaking, hilarious, and at times enraging, Kerman’s story offers a rare look into the lives of women in prison—why it is we lock so many away and what happens to them when they’re there.

ke_all-new_associate_300x250For starters, I’ll say I was shocked for what Kerman was jailed for. I know it’s not necessarily “normal” for people to stumble upon friendships with drug dealers, but she seemed fairly innocent in the entire ordeal. Once she gets to prison, some of the things her fellow inmates are locked up for was also a shock to me – I know it’s a minimum security prison, so the crimes are non-violent, but still. I had no idea people went to jail for eBay fraud, and I had to Google “Check Kiting” as I’d never heard of it.

Since the book was written by Kerman, she skates over just how privileged she is. She talks about how she has money on the outside and she has people that care for her, but it’s much more than that. Who, out there, could honestly go to jail for 15 months and have a job waiting for them? Her friends even set up a website for her while she was in the slammer to get mail while inside. She also had visitors every single weekend – her fiance sometimes leaving work early or even flying from New York to Chicago to see her for a few hours. Like daaamn girl.

Other than that, though, I really enjoyed – I’ll nearly say I loved – reading this book. I read it in just two days; I was hooked! Of course, the subject matter is interesting; a look inside a world most of us have never seen.

But it’s also about the characters – the women she meets in Danbury; their stories, the work they do, their families, and what they have to look forward to (if anything) once they get out. I loved all of the detail Kerman put into this book and wondered if she wrote these stories while in prison.

Her talk about all of the little things that got her through the day – yoga class, learning how to make “prison cheesecake”, getting mail, and finally being able to purchase a radio so she could listen to the local college station. My favorite scene of the entire book was when an inmate treats her to a rootbeer float from the commissary when her account money hadn’t cleared yet. It was so simple and sweet; I just loved it.

Despite the heavy topic of the book, things remained fairly sunny, and that’s probably because Kerman knew she was getting out, she had a job, and she had family and a fiance waiting for her return. I’m sure if we read something from someone with a much harsher sentence, the tone would have been different.

I’m really excited to watch the series now, and see how the show treats these characters and how they take on the issue of time. There’s at least four seasons of the show (right?), and Kerman is only in for 13 months of her sentence. We’ll see! I was at the library over the weekend and season one was checked out, so I might have to add it to my list of reserves.

If you’ve read the book, I’d love to know what you think about it and how it compares to the Netflix series. The next book Blanche’s Book Club will be reading is “The Nest” by Cynthia D. Sweeney. We’d love for you to read it with us, just find us on social media @OrangeJulius7.

Have a fantastic, safe, and fun weekend everyone! I’ll see you right back here on Monday, and hey, it’ll almost be Thanksgiving time!

Episodes 5: ‘Divorce’ & ‘Insecure’.

Francis and Robert... sitting in a tree?

Francis and Robert… sitting in a tree?

Good morning! I definitely stayed up writing this entire post last night, and scheduled it to publish, and when I woke up, I see that it published with no words or phots… so there’s the wonder of technology on this Monday morning!

I spent most of my weekend at dance rehearsal, as I performed in two showcases yesterday evening. I have the day off work, and I’m really glad I planned for it, because my legs are so sore! But, more on that later this week. For now, I’ll try and write what I recall from my usual Sunday night TV binge (given that I’ve already erased the episodes from my DVR).

If you recall, last week I said I was giving HBO’s “Divorce” one final episode before I stopped watching it, and that episode was last night’s.

When the episode opens, Robert is hiring a divorce attorney. The guy seems like a complete idiot, but still costs an arm and a leg, and only accepts cash. Robert obliges, and later, the attorney calls the house and Francis answers – a rather awkward conversation follows,  but nonetheless, now Francis knows Robert hired an attorney.

She immediately calls Robert, upset that he is no longer agreeing to mediation. So, she goes out and finds herself an attorney as well – only this guy has a reputation that precedes him. Apparently, she’s going to win this thing, despite her affair, and also admitting to deleting episodes of Robert’s favorite shows on the DVR (pure evil).

Later, Francis finally gets the keys to her art gallery and the realtor tells her all the things it’s been before, kind of making it seem like businesses in that area/building haven’t succeeded. Francis seems like she’s starting to feel a bit of buyer’s remorse on the place, but it’s too late now.

That night, Francis and some of her girlfriends head out to an art opening. Francis meets one of her favorite artists, and at first, it seems they are hitting it off and that something might spark. But then, the artist says something to another guy and they end up punching each other in all all out brawl, and ending the night early. Awkward.

Meanwhile, Robert is out with Nick, who is fully recovered from his heart attack. Robert pulls out his laptop and shows Nick his ideas for “Fun Space” – one of those places that has all the trampolines. Robert is convinced that this should be his next investment, although nick isn’t so sure.

At the end of the night, Robert fires his attorney and also his accountant in a fit of rage. Simultaneously, Francis’ friends tell her she’s probably not going to get custody of her dog. And that’s the end of the episode. Not impressed. Even the previews for next week look like the same old thing. Is anyone else giving up on this show? I wanted to like it! But I’m just not seeing it go anywhere – why did Robert and Francis get together in the first place? It seems like they’ve hated each other for awhile, so I’d love to know the backstory. Someone let me know if that episode ever happens.

Heeey girl...

Heeey girl…

Afterward, on “Insecure” the story is moving right along. Isa is really concerned about the fact that all of the students found the video of her at the open mic night. She apologizes to the teachers at the school and promises she’ll make it right.

This means she goes to Molly’s office and asks her to help her sue whoever recorded and posted the video, since it was done so without her consent. Molly agrees to help and ends up calling her former date – the “Enterprise” guy. He’s happy to hear from her, but seems a little pissed when he finds out why she’s calling.

He was at the open mic night, but isn’t sure who recorded the video. He says he’ll talk to his brother and get back to her. Molly has a new man in the scene, Mike, who seems to really like her, and vis versa. She invites him to come to her coworker’s engagement party that night and he tells her he will see her then.

Later, as she’s getting ready, she texts him to see if he’s coming to pick her up. He tells her he will just see her at the party. She knows this is a bad sign, but heads to the party, where he shows up and tells her coworkers that he’s her boyfriend. Everyone seems impressed, but when Molly pulls him away and asks if he was serious about that title, he says “Of course not”, that he was just doing her a favor by impressing her friends. She’s embarrassed and asks him to leave.

Meanwhile, Daniel is determined to help Isa recover from the leaked video. He invites her to hangout at his studio, but when she gets inside, it’s dark, there’s one guy in the booth (who sounds pretty terrible), and everyone else is sitting around drunk and/or high. Isa seems uncomfortable, until everyone leaves and Daniel asks her to get in the booth.

She records a bit of a song, and Daniel seems impressed. He asks her why she didn’t give him a chance before; she explains herself, and they laugh, but sort of agree maybe there would have been something there. They kiss, and Isa stops it, at first… until things get heated, REAL quick.

Afterward, Isa has another scene looking in the bathroom mirror. You can tell she feels guilty, and she sees what looks to be a woman’s bar of soap in the bathroom, and she quickly leaves.

Meanwhile, Lawrence is working a shift at Best Buy when his lil friend from the bank arrives, wearing a very revealing top. She invites him out for drinks and he quickly reminds her that he has a girlfriend. She seems embarrassed and quickly leaves.

I’ve been listening to a podcast, “InsecuriTEA” that recaps the show, and the two hostesses predicted either Isa would cheat or Lawrence would, and I’m glad it wasn’t Lawrence. I really want him to be a good guy, and it seems he’s really trying, even when Isa’s not around.

The question now becomes, will Isa tell Lawrence about her little affair? We will see in next week’s episode!

Espisodes 4: ‘Divorce’ & ‘Insecure’.

Pretty Issa.

Pretty Issa.

Hola! Here we are, back at it again! This weekend was exactly what I needed: beautiful weather, semi-productive activities, and lots of back porch relaxin’ and couch potato sittin’ – watching loads of TV. And that includes my Sunday night faves: “Divorce” and “Insecure” on HBO.

I usually talk “Divorce” first, simply because it comes on before “Insecure”, but I’m all about mixing things up lately. So, “Insecure” it is.

At the beginning of the episode, Issa is trying to spice things up with her boyfriend by hopping into the shower with him, but it naturally ends poorly. Molly has another subpar date, and we’re off to the races.

At work, Issa gets an unexpected visit from Daniel (the guy from Facebook a few episodes back). He tells her he doesn’t want things to be awkward between them, and she tells him she’s back with her boyfriend. After that, he’s pretty much done with the conversation.

Issa calls Molly to give her the scoop, and Issa blames this entire scenario on the typical law: as soon as things are looking up, an ex finds a reason to pop back into her life. At the end of the call, Molly admits she may not be able to make it to Issa’s work for “Career Day”.

Lawrence arrives at Best Buy for his first day on the job. While he’s told he’s doing a good job in the computer section, he’s asked to cover the washer/dryer section. He doesn’t seem too pleased with this idea, but goes anyway.

Back at work, Issa is helping plan Career Day, and finally starts to bond with one of her female coworkers. They bond over the frustrations of their job, and realize they still have slots to fill at Career Day. Her coworker suggests Daniel – since he works in music. Issa hesitates, but texts him anyway.

Molly is on another date that she seems to be blowing off, although he seems actually decent. They are at a jazz club and he invites her to dance, which makes for a cute scene.

Lawrence meets his old fling for lunch; the one he saw at the bank. It seems innocent although she’s a little flirty. He has his paperwork from Best Buy and he expresses his concern over the fact that it may not be a temporary job like he originally thought. She tells him to keep up his side project: the app.

At Career Day, Daniel shows up with a sound board and easily impresses all the kids. He lays a beat and invites the kids to freestyle, and one kid embarrasses himself. Daniel tells the kids Issa can spit. Of course, none of them believe her, and he says “Yeah, she actually inspired me”, and all the kids whooooo oohhhh!

She walks him outside, and I think there is this weird moment where she was impressed by him. Afterall, he’s got a great job that’s cool, and he was good with her kids. Later, she has a fantasy about Daniel with his shirt off (looking FINE) and Ty Dolla Sign – random, yes. And this just drives home the fact that Issa doesn’t seem to be attracted to Lawrence anymore.

Molly arrives and has lots of questions for Issa: why was Daniel there? Why didn’t she ask her boyfriend to come? And as Issa is leaving school, the kids have found a video of her now-infamous open mic night. She’s toooooast – and the episode is over.

I am still loving this show! I’d venture to say it’s the best thing on TV right now – and there’s even a podcast that recaps it call, called “InsecuriTEA”. Definitely worth a listen.

Alone, again.

Alone, again.

After last week’s episode, where Francis admitted to sleeping with her side-piece at least “32 times”, her and Robert are going through with the divorce. The episode opens with their first appointment at mediation, and despite being able to agree on that, it’s about the only thing they agree on.

Next step? Telling their kids they’re getting a divorce. Yikes.

Francis also hasn’t told anyone at work, until she’s forced to when she needs her pay stubs from the payroll department. She has an awkward breakdown in front of a random employee, and even admits to her affair. Awwwwkwaaard.

Francis and Robert take their kids out for ice cream to tell them about the divorce. But it ends up in an argument over how expensive the sundaes are – and the conversation never happens.

After missing a call from “J”, her former lover, Francis meets with him and tells him she no longer wants to see him and she doesn’t want them to hurt each other any longer. He agrees, and asks Francis if she will ask her husband to stop calling him.

J then shows Francis all of the texts, missed calls, pictures, and even videos Robert has sent him – they are threatening, and awkwardly hilarious.

Back at mediation, Robert is late so nothing can really get done… and the episode is over.

I’m going to be honest here – this show needs to pick it up. At this point, we (the viewers) have no clue why Robert and Francis got together in the first place. Frankly, they aren’t very likable people – and hey, there are characters that we shouldn’t like, i.e. Dexter, Nurse Jackie, etc. – but we find reasons to root for them.

And right now, there are no stakes; no reasons for us to cheer for Francis and Robert to stay together. What would save this season? A flashback episode that shows us some incredible backstory on how/why they got together – and flash forward to current time, and something arises (a problem) that requires them to stay together in order to fix it.

Otherwise, we’re going to be watching six more episodes of mediocre bickering. It’s getting old.

‘Chesapeake Shores’ finale & ‘Divorce’ premier!

The season finale of 'Chesapeake Shores'.

The season finale of ‘Chesapeake Shores’.

I can’t believe it’s already the season finale of “Chesapeake Shores”! After last week’s episode (starring Abby and Trace’s hot little date), I was curious to see how things were going to wrap up.

And the episode started right off with a kiss between the two of them – yeeee!

Abby’s dad made his flight safely, and he’s arrived on site of a project – I’m guessing the project he was upset about over the phone. And his in-person visit isn’t much different; it’s still unclear what’s happening here but it’s something shady and we only have 50 minutes to clear it up!

At Sally’s, Jess is talking about food with her new guy… and she orders a “breakup” – no, really. Then, she cancels the order… no, really. She explains everything to him, about her sister, and then she tells him he may have an opportunity to cook for her at the B&B… and even though she can’t afford to pay him, he’s oddly thrilled by this offer. What?

Abby’s dad, Mick, is confronting his partner – seems he’s (the partner) is backing out on funding due to too many variables; though still not many details here.

Meanwhile, people are STEALING books from the lending library. Oh, Chesapeake Shores and its crime-ridden streets…

Later, Abby gets a text from Wes and it shows her phone screen and she has the font set at, like, 72. Is she blind? It looked crazy. Anyway, she meets him and they go for a walk. He oddly backs down and says Abby and the girls SHOULD live in Chesapeake Shores and that he’s telling the court to go back to the old custody arrangement.

Kevin is still rehabbing, but he’s totally insane on the physical therapy: like doing push-ups when no one is looking kind of thing. Then, he tells Conner he doesn’t think he can get married. Duh!

Abby runs over to Trace’s building to tell him about her custody success, and mid-hug, Lee pops in, and Abby is a lit-tle pissed. Trace assures her that Lee arrived without warning and is excited to work on the album.

While the cook is prepping things in the kitchen, a man comes in looking for Brie – I’m guessing it’s her ex. And I’ll say, cook (can’t remember his name) seems a little jealous. And yes, it is indeed, Brie’s ex-boyfriend, who cheated on her. And it’s really obvious that Brie is not excited to see him.

Guess who else is staying at the B&B? Lee! Wow, this just got awkward…

There’s a BBQ at the B&B, and everyone’s exes have gathered. Then, Trace gets a call – something about needing an ambulance, and he speeds off in his truck. And he speeds right by a State Trooper, who goes after him. After showing his license and registration, Trace is arrested on an outstanding warrant.

Back at the party, Brie finds out she was accepted as the in-resident screenwriter, while Abby just now discovered that Trace is nowhere to be found.

So, then, Abby’s dad gives a beautiful toast to the campfire crowd, and the episode is over. I’m not kidding!! So Trace is in freaking jail while his dad is in the hospital… now I’m wondering if this wasn’t supposed to be the finale, and they just cut the season. Hmm…

One thing I kept thinking about as I watched this last episode was, will there be a season two? Unfortunately, a little bit of Google research didn’t provide me with any clear answers – I did find an article that says it hasn’t been renewed yet, but that article was from April, so who knows. I hope so!

Sarah Jessica Parker stars in HBO's 'Divorce'.

Sarah Jessica Parker stars in HBO’s ‘Divorce’.

You may remember HBO’s “Divorce” as one of the shows I listed on my Fall TV Guide – and I have been counting down the days ever since! I’ll be honest, I wasn’t wowed by the season preview, I think I was mostly excited about Sarah Jessica Parker’s return to HBO.

The 30-minute pilot starts off with Parker’s character getting ready in the bathroom, and her husband is upset because of the time spent in the bathroom between his wife and his daughter, and claims he actually had to take a shit in a coffee can in the garage.

Later, at a party, we meet Molly Shannon’s character – Diane, which is pretty much the same character she’s played in everything. The party is for Diane’s birthday, and her husband gives an oddly rude toast, saying how old she looks.

Parker’s character’s husband (they haven’t mentioned his name at this point) is outside the party looking in and he just looks said – he can see Diane and her husband arguing, while SJP sits inside talking to friends. He is also witness to Diane finding a gun, and frantically pointing it at everyone – even shooting it, but missing. While the bullet misses Diane’s husband, he grips his chest as a result of a heart attack, and Diane is arrested.

Afterward, SJP – I think her name is Francis – is wondering how this happened to a couple who was married for 8 years. She is asking her husband and talking about a memory she had of when he threw her laptop out of a window. She continues down this road, and basically tells him she doesn’t love him anymore, and she wants a divorce.

The next morning, her husband (Robert) wants to know if she really meant what she said. And she assures him, yes, she meant it. He’s frustrated because she won’t go to counseling, but she says they’ve already been to counseling.

Francis walks her kids to school to which her daughter calls her a bitch – yeesh. Francis is riding the train and telling her friend about the divorce. Her friend alludes to a man with whom Francis has been sleeping with, so that’s interesting.

She meets this man – Julien – for sex after her train ride, and she tells him she told Robert about her wanting a divorce. And Julien does not seem amused, at all, by this, which is not the reaction Francis was hoping for.

Back at home for the evening, she seems to kind of go back on her decision – and tells Robert this is their chance to go back and figure out where things went wrong.

The next day, Robert confronts Francis about Julien, and tells her he wants the divorce and that he’s going to make her miserable, and he’s going to make her children hate her. Whoaaaaa!

And then the episode is over. You know, this show got some pretty bad reviews, and many said it was sad. Sure, divorce is sad. But, I kind of liked it. I’m definitely going to stick with it for at least a few more episodes and see where it goes.

Chesapeake Shores: Episodes 5 & 6.

The whole gang... minus Trace :(

The whole gang… minus Trace 😦

Helllooo! I’m not sure if any of my readers are keeping up with “Chesapeake Shores”, but I’m really enjoying this series. I wasn’t able to watch last Sunday’s episode on time (I had my toes in the sand), but don’t worry, I’ve got the recap right here!

Episode 5

Remember, we left off with two pretty big things: something unknown has happened to Kevin overseas, and Trace’s former bandmate is in town and wants answers.

At the start of the episode, Abby is on her way to court for the custody of her daughters – Trace sends her a sweet text message on her way there.

Back at Trace’s house, his bandmate is still trying to convince him to come back to Nashville. She says he can stay at her place, and he’ll be able to see John – whoever that is. He still doesn’t seem to be interested in coming back though, and she’s pissed.

In court, it’s finally revealed that Chesapeake Shores is located in Maryland! Anyways, Abby fights back and also asks for full physical custody of her daughters, which the judge seems shocked by, so they recess for lunch.

Back on the beach, Trace seems to be looking at different properties – for what reason, it is unknown at this point.

At lunch, Conner is with Abby and the family as they wait to go back to court, and he’s ultra saucy telling the family what could happen once court is back in session. Abby’s dad gets a call that Kevin has been found – he’s injured and on his way to a hospital near Germany, but they don’t know how severe it is yet.

Back in court, a ruling for temporary custody is granted: the kids spend summers in Chesapeake Shores, and the remainder of the year in New York with their father, unless Abby and her ex can work out an agreement.

Meanwhile, Trace is looking at a pretty big piece of property, but the real estate agent tells him he would need all cash and a 60-day escrow in order to get it. That doesn’t seem to be an option for him, so he says he’ll get back to her.

He meets back up with his bandmate and tells her he’s willing to do the duet album, but he has to have the money upfront, and it has to be the last thing they do together.

“We’ll see about that,” she says.

And even though he seems aggravated, he says he will need a few weeks in Chesapeake Shores before heading back to Nashville. She asks him why, and he tells her he wants to open a place for people to hear real music, and put a recording studio in it.

She kisses him (!) and he pulls away, and tells her this is strictly about business obligations. YIKES.

On the way home from court, Trace is on his motorcycle behind Abby and her dad. They pull over and tell him the news about court; he says he’s on his way to the bank for a loan. But at the bank, he seems hesitant to walk inside.

At the end of the episode, he’s sketching plans for the building he wants…

The previews for episode 6 show Kevin coming home, and an introduction to… Kevin’s fiancee. What?! Guess we’ll see…

Episode 6

At the start of the episode, a woman appears in Chesapeake Shores and announces herself as Kevin’s fiance… obviously the family is shocked to hear this, and says they’ve been engaged since May, despite Kevin not mentioning it when he was home for July 4.

She tells the family that Kevin will be completing his recovery in Chesapeake Shores… in the family home. Because, why would he recover anywhere else??

Georgia, the fiance, starts the official setup -turning the family dining room into a hospital room, complete with equipment, as if she’s done it before.

Meanwhile, Trace is talking with his mom, and tells her a little bit about his plans for the building and the upcoming album. It’s obvious they’re not close, but definitely friendly. He asks her to dinner the following night.

At work, Abby’s boss tells her there’s a “Fed” waiting for her. Upon entering her office, he tells her he’s from the Department of Justice. He starts asking her why she had boxes shipped from her previous office, and wants to know what’s inside them. He says there is an FCC violation, so she leaves the room to call her attorney, and calls Connor.

All of this while Connor is in line to take the BAR exam…

Abby informs the Fed she’s lawyering up, and he tells her he’ll be in touch.

Kevin arrives home on the ambulance, and it literally looks like they tossed him into the ambulance directly from war and drove him through the ocean to arrive at Chesapeake Shores.

Abby gets word that the Fed has interviewed some of her coworkers in the New York office, and lest we forget that Milly was/is sleeping with her ex – do I smell revenge?

At the house, Kevin seems like there’s major issues… as in, PTSD or some other mental issues. He seems really out of it, and it’s almost difficult to watch.

Trace finds out the property he wants sold for asking price, and it seems like there’s some sort of rift between him and his father over it – though vague.

Back at the house, the family doesn’t understand why Kevin isn’t under more strict medical care (no joke), but decide to just keep by his side. The family isn’t impressed by Georgia and her cold demeanor.

Kevin’s mom has a pret-ty heated discussion with Georgia outside – they know they got off on the wrong foot, but Georgia tells his mother that crying his weakness, and basically tells her that SHE is the reason he went to war. Yeeouuuwch.

After taking the BAR, it appears Connor has found himself a little girlfriend despite what a jerk he acts like. It’s a woman from his study group, and I can definitely see this storyline going somewhere.

Trace is having lunch with his mom and dad, and his dad tells him Abby’s dad is the one who bought the property he wanted – HMM…

They show the previews for next week’s episode and it shows Trace confessing something serious to Abby… yeep!!

Chesapeake Shores: episode 4.

Who's the new chick in Trace's life?

Who’s the new chick in Trace’s life?

The previews from this week’s episode looked emotional, and within the first few minutes of it, the family gets a call from their son, Kevin, who is deployed, and he tells them it’s going to be his last deployment. His phone cuts out when he tries to explain why, although the family is relieved.

Abby is finally heading back to work in Baltimore, and as she’s running out the door, she confesses she still hasn’t told the girls she’s planning to move to Chesapeake Shores. Hmm…

Meanwhile, a girl with some big ‘ole dreads heads over to Trace’s house, and she even walks right inside… but he isn’t home. This should be interesting.

Abby arrives at her new office, and it’s definitely not the New York high rise she was working at in New York. She’s overdressed, and there’s a yoga ball instead of a chair at her desk – not quite her cup of tea.

Back at Trace’s, he comes home to find this girl sitting on his bed. And he is piiiiiiised. He immediately raises his voice at her, “I told you NOT to come here and you think it’s a good idea to just show up here?” She explains that HE’S the one who left Nashville, where he had a life. He gets his things, and leaves, telling her she can’t stay.

Jesse runs into her, as she’s looking for a place to stay. Her name is Lee, and Jesse is a little starstruck, as Lee was a singer on Trace’s last album.

The Patriarch of the family seems disappointed that, even though it’s summer, the family isn’t spending much time together. At work, Abby introduces herself to her new staff, and it’s super formal, and kind of awkward.

Although Jesse is admiring Lee from afar as she is singing at the Inn, Jesse knows Lee is probably in town to see Trace, and she needs to tell Abby… but how?

Abby arrives at Trace’s after work, apparently he’d sent her a text about needed to show her something. He hands her a wedding ring, that he found in the floorboards of the church he’s working on. He suggests she give it to Mick,, since he’s on the board of the historical society.

It’s kind of an awkward moment, and she suggests going to brunch on Saturday so they can start making up their missed time. But he tells her it’s “not such a good idea” and gets out of her car.

Meanwhile, Conner and his mom are having a pretty nasty fight at his apartment after she makes a sly comment regarding the fact that his father pays the rent.

When Abby gets home, her dad is building a playhouse for her girls. She quickly gets a call from Conner and explains what just happened between him and their mom.

When Abby gives her dad the ring from Trace, her stepmom takes a look at it and seems emotional… hmmm!

Abby’s sisters pull her aside to tell her about Lee in town to see Trace; and she doesn’t seem upset at all. She tells the ladies that her and Trace are just friends, so it’s no big deal.

Lee and Trace are sitting around a fire, and it comes out that they were given an advance from a label to produce another album, before he left. He says he returned the advance, and she says it’s not about the money, the label wants them to record the album.

He also drops that he “almost cost someone their life”…uhhh WHAT?! She says he needs to forgive himself, and it’s pretty much left at that.

Across town, Abby is laying in bed thinking about what she said to her sisters. It’s obvious she feels a little different about Trace than she’s led on (duh). Later that morning, outside of Sally’s, Abby sees Trace’s truck and goes inside. He’s there with Lee… and it’s awkward.

But Lee knows they dated and she later asks Trace what happened; she knows it’s one of the reasons he won’t come back to Nashville. “Is it really that hard to choose?” she asks him… and he doesn’t have much of an answer.

At family dinner, the house phone rings… a call about Kevin. Their father says it was a PR officer saying they needed to stand by, because they lost communication with Kevin’s troop. …And the episode is over.

Cannot wait for next week’s episode!

Finally finished ‘Newsroom’, season 1.

The cast of 'The Newsroom' season one.

The cast of ‘The Newsroom’ season one.

Okay, I finally finished watching season one of “The Newsroom” – and per usual, I’m about four years behind on the game. But hey, better late than never, right?

The first time I’d ever heard about the show, I was on a first date with a guy from Match.com. We were at a coffee shop, and although I was still a TV junkie then, I didn’t have HBO. So, when my date said I should definitely “check it out”, I put it on my mental list of shows to watch.

Just in case you’re wondering, we didn’t have a second date. I actually thought he was fun to talk to, and cute, but he was very quick to text me during his drive home and tell me that he wasn’t interested. I didn’t meet up with anyone from Match again, and cancelled my subscription after one month.

I didn’t get HBO until I moved to Austin and got Uverse, and I immediately checked my On-Demand and saw that “The Newsroom” is basically NEVER available to watch (niether is Season 3 of “Girls”, which I have yet to see, but that is for another day). Figures.

So, I asked for season one for Christmas, and I got it this last year from my mom. I was talking to this guy at the time, a guy I really liked, and he also really liked the show. So, after watching the first few episodes, we rehashed it.

And, when things started to go south with him, I laid on my couch under an electric blanket (it was January, after all) and sadly tried to watch more episodes.

If you’ve watched the show, you’ve heard the theme music, and I’ll be damned, but it makes me emotional like every time. I’m pretty sure it’s just because it reminds me of this guy I liked, and not because I love the news, but I really do love the news.

So, anyway, about the show. A summary from Wiki, “At Atlantis Cable News (ACN), anchormsan Will McAvoy is forced to contend with a new team after his Executive Producer decides to transition to a new program and takes most of his staff with him. His new team includes executive producer MacKenzie McHale, newsroom staff Jim, Don, Neal, and Sloan, and their boss, Charlie Skinner. Together they set out on a patriotic and quixotic mission to do the news well in the face of corporate and commercial obstacles and their own personal relationships.”

In short, this show is good. Is it great? No. Like many shows, it definitely forces us to suspect our belief in real life, which is okay – I’m all about escaping the real world. However, the show covers issues we’ve all experienced in real life, whether on the news or in our cities. Season one covered events such as the election, the Gabby Giffords shooting, the Egyptian president, and the killing of Osama Bin Laden.

Particularly, during ACN’s preparation in the coverage of Bin Laden, they wanted to be the first to report it – even before the president did. Uh, THAT would NEVER happen. Ever.

And then there’s this opening scene, season one, episode one, that had everyone talking:

Around the 3:40 mark, the professor hosting the chat presses Will for a more detailed answer; which would never – ever happen. Any college, no matter how progressive, is always too conservative to risk pissing off their guests, and if there is a college out there that does it, let me know and I’ll retake my entire undergrad.

Is it a good scene? Sure. It’s emotional and fairly bold; a news anchor today woulnd’t have the balls to say what he said. And perhaps, as a journalist, it’s difficult for me to suspend my beliefs in this area – but hey, I made it through the entire season!

Honestly, after the first few episodes, it was pretty easy to get into, I just didn’t feel that pull of “OMG I can’t wait to get to the next episode!” But, I already have season two (another one of my $5 finds from FYE several months ago), and I saw that my local library has season three – so I’m lined up for a bit. I’ll let you know how it goes.

And that guy that I think of when watching “The Newsroom”? I actually contacted him once I finished season one, hoping he’d want to rehash it. But, given the fact that I’m pretttyyyy sure he hates me, he didn’t respond.

Nothing fake about that.

‘Famously Single’: It’s date night…

Dr. Darcy.

Dr. Darcy.

Wahoo, episode 4 of “Famously Single”! I was honestly so freaking excited when I finally got it thru my thick skull yesterday that it was indeed Tuesday, which meant a fresh episode of “Famously Single”. After last week’s steam-session with the cast members, I was ready to see how things were going to progress.

The episode kicks off with Callum saying that it’s Brandi’s birthday and he surprises her with a bouquet of flowers for her. Aww! However, she is still questioning what happened the night before (in the previous episode). Rightfully so.

Dr. Darcy has a one-on-one with Brandi because of her attraction to Callum. Dr. Darcy is worried that Brandi is falling back into her ways of liking the bad boy who’s essentially unavailable, given that he’ll return to London once the taping is over.

Brandi tells Dr. Darcy about what happened at the party; about Callum’s jealousy and anger. Brandi admits that his anger does scare him, but she likes him. DANGER ZONE.

Next, Dr. Darcy meets with Somaya in hopes of getting a better picture of her dating past. She admits she’s never had a full-blown relationship with a man; and one that she had that was close involved severe physical violence. Like…as in.. he beat her head into the ground.

Somaya admits that this instance made her hate men; although she knows she didn’t deserve it, and that not everyone is bad.

Dr. Darcy makes a STELLAR point here: “If the person you’re with doesn’t add to you, they take away.” Boom.

The housemates decide to throw Brandi a surprise birthday party that night; which Brandi was really touched by. They go out, have some drinks, and Brandi pulls Callum to the side and explains herself over what happened at the house party. He apologizes and they seem to smooth things over.

Meanwhile… Aubrey and Pauly are still flirty; and it’s kind of annoying. Or maybe just Aubrey is.

Dr. Darcy announces the next challenge: everyone will be going on dates, but the housemates will serve as each other’s dating coaches; including choosing how they do hair, makeup, dress, and even what they say while on the date, given an earpiece.

The guys will coach the girls, and vis-versa.

Aubrey immediately doesn’t want to participate, and she doesn’t want Pauly to either, because she wants to date him. So, she tries to convince his partner/dating coach to not let him fall for his blind date. Ughhhhh.

Josh and Brandi are partners, which is pretty funny, because Josh immediately demands that Brandi not wear any animal print. He chooses virginal white. LOLZ.

When Brandi coaches Josh on his data, it’s pretty hilarious. She forces Josh to ask his date if she’s into foursomes, and shockingly, his date doesn’t get up and walk away.

Aubrey’s date has “Fuck Fame” tattoed across his knuckles; and with that, she’s done with him.

Pauly’s date is suuuuper cute; and it seems they have a lot in common. However, his partner, Somaya, is keeping her promise to Aubrey and is not letting him get too deep.

Aubrey is grilling Pauly about his date…and he’s sweating it. He’d taken his date’s number, but he says he does like Aubrey.

The group is starting to get a little annoyed with Josh, because he says he wants to learn and continue to go on dates, but he’s veeerrry picky.

The end of the episode brings a group session with Dr. Darcy to recap her on how everyone’s dates went. I’ll admit this part was pretty lackluster – Dr. Darcy basically told everyone they did great…and who learns from that?

In the preview for next week’s episode, the group is out on another set of dates, and Aubrey looks pissed, yet again. But we’ll have to wait and see what happens! You know I’ll be watching!

Overdose: Paging ‘Nurse Jackie’.

"Life is full of little pricks."

“Life is full of little pricks.”

Over the long-weekend, one of the things I’d promised to myself was some quality time in front of the TV. I know that probably sounds like a giant waste of time, but I’m a TV-junkie, and I have a stack of DVDs that I bought months ago during a massive sale at FYE, and have yet to open most of them.

One of those was season one of Showtime’s “Nurse Jackie“. I know I’m about seven years late to the game on this one, but it’s been on my watchlist for several years – I don’t have Showtime (I picked HBO, instead), so I was constantly on the hunt for a bargain DVD of the first season. And I finally got it for $5.

My first experience with Showtime was “Dexter“, which I loved, and later saw a few episodes of “Californication” (though not enough to comment on it). Both of these shows featured characters that normally, we’d probably hate, but they also posessed qualities that made us root for them – that’s what most writers dream of.

 I’d heard similar things about “Nurse Jackie” – a nurse who is addicted to drugs. Count me in! Here’s the description from the back of the DVD:

“Three-time Primetime Emmy winner Edie Falco is “outstanding (TIME Magazine) as Jackie Peyton, a nurse trying to survive the chaotic grind of saving lives in a hectic New York City hospital. Sharp-tongued and quick-witted, Jackie’s a woman of substance who knows how to handle it all. With a white lie here, a bent rule there, and a steady dose of pain relievers for her chronic back pain, Jackie does whatever it takes to get the job done. See why critics call NURSE JACKIE “wildly entertaining (TV GUIDE Magazine) and “a habit well worth acquiring (THE WASHINGTON POST) in these bitingly funny episodes from the first season of the groundbreaking series.”

I’ll be honest, I wasn’t hooked from the start of episode one – sure, Jackie is a great nurse, and between patients, she’s in the bathroom snorting crushed percocets (sometimes vicodin). She regularly hooks up with one of the doctors that provides her pain killers, and she’s not afraid to speak her mind. But where’s the evil twist?

And in the last 30 seconds of the epsiode, Jackie arrives at home to two, cute little daughters, and a handsome husband who’s cooked dinner. NOW we’re talking!

As the episodes progress, it’s apparent that Jackie works hard to keep her lives separate – removing her wedding ring before entering the hospital, hiding her crushed pills inside empty packets of artifical sweetener, only eating lunch with coworkers, and using separate cell phones for the men in her life.

The other battle seems to be a moral one: that nurses are supposed to be healers, and saints. With her patients, I’d say Jackie has no problem reaching that status, but her demons are constantly at her heels.

Fair warning: there are spoilers ahead! So… things start to go downhill for Jackie when her sidekick Zoe catches her having sex with Eddie. Several episodes later, Eddie sees Jackie in her husband’s bar, hugging Kevin, and their daughters sitting at the bar.

Up until this point, Eddie didn’t KNOW Jackie was married, or had any children. Honestly, the season could have ended with that scene: Eddie standing outside the bar, looking through the window seeing Jackie’s other life.

But, in the episodes following, Eddie gets in deep, actually going to the bar while Kevin is working. There’s a picture of him and Jackie behind the bar, allowing Eddie the opportunity to inquire. Eddie gets the details, and even admits to Kevin that he’s seeing someone, “but she’s married, with two kids…”

He doesn’t blow Jackie’s cover, but he later arrives at the hospital, drunk as shit, and whispers to Jackie that he saw Kevin at the bar. And that pretty much wraps the season.

My only complaint? That the episodes were only 30 minutes long.

And yes, I will be searching for season two at a bargain price!

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‘Famously Single’: Heatin’ things up!

Meow!

Meow!

Between episodes of “Below Deck” and “Famously Single”, Tuesday nights are starting to become pretty awesome! So, episode three of “Famously Single” aired last night, and shit is starting to get good.

Dr. Darcy kicks off the show by inviting the cast into the living room together to talk about sex. Particularly, she asks the group how they feel about monogamy. The women were in agreement that monogamy is possible, and good. The guys? Not so much… shocker.

A few of the men admitted to cheating; and said it’s hard for them to think about being loyal to one woman. Once the group started talking about sex; there was a mix of opinions about casual sex vs. making love. Pauly says he’s been single for so long that everything about his life is casual; and he admits to never making love.

And this little comment turns Aubrey RIGHT on! I’m sure you’ve heard the rumors that these two hook up on the show (and perhaps are still together), so this could be the spark that starts it all. Dr. Darcy then informs the group that their next challenge is to throw a house party full of eligible singles.

The cast members start scouring their phones to find single friends willing to come to the party. While this is happening, Aubrey is putting her flirt on. She’s all, “Pauly are you going to invite a bunch of girls and make me jealous?!” …And she is like sitting on his laaaaap… oh shit.

Dr. Darcy notices this trend, and says that Pauly has a tendency to get with girls that are convenient, so she wonders if he really likes Aubrey or if it’s just him falling in-line with his habits.

A similar story is happening between Brandi and Calum – they are flirting, and she’s hoping he won’t hook up with anyone at the party. SNAP.

Dr. Darcy brings Calum in for his one-on-one to get his “story” – and what he reveals actually brought tears to my eyes. He talked about his father being an alcoholic, and Calum has very few memories of his father otherwise. His father passed away when Calum was just 24, and he says after that, he went on a three-year drinking bender, lost his contracts, his looks, and gained a reputation as a playboy.

He’s cleaned up his act a little bit since then, and says he’s currently the healthiest and feeling the best he’s felt in his whole life…but, he’s still single.

The group goes out for the night, and things are getting heated between Aubrey and Pauly, and also with Calum and Brandi. Pauly has his little confessional with the camera, and he says he’s okay with the flirting, but he wants to keep it at a minimum. We’ll see about that.

…And then Brandi kisses Calum. Right at the table.

The next night is the house party. Of course, Pauly D is the DJ, and everyone is drinking and dancing… Aubrey tells her girlfriend that Pauly is going to be her next man, and that she is going to **** him. That’s how it was on the screen.

Meanwhile, Calum is getting hammered. RECIPE FOR DISASTER.

Brandi is dancing, and kissing some guys, and it is pissing Calum off… And then Pauly and Aubrey make out. And she says, “I hope he kisses me like that at our wedding.”

*Rolls eyes*

Calum calls Brandi out for kissing multiple dudes, and he tells her she’s “disgusting”. Pauly and Brandi start to walk off together, and Brandi kisses him on the forehead. Pauly tells Brandi she’s “the coolest girl” he’s ever met in his entire life.

Calum and Aubrey are watching the whole thing and he kisses her on the cheek. Drama.

Pauly and Aubrey go into another room and shut the door, and she’s asking him if he’s only going to want her. They are kissing, but the camera cuts away.

Calum kind of yells at Brandi, and Brandi starts crying. It’s actually a little sad.

The next morning, Brandi and Aubrey have a heart-to-heart over their feelings for the guys. Brandi admits that Calum is the typical guy she falls for – a bad boy, and one that’s unavailable, given that he’ll go back to London once they’re done taping the show.

…And then the episode ends! I was so sad there wasn’t a group session at the end, but I guess I’ll just have to get over it. I’m sure next week’s episode will make up for it!

Can’t get enough of The Bitter Lemon? Sweet, ‘cuz we can’t stop talking! Stop by this afternoon for a second post today, because it’s Hump Day, and there’s a three-day weekend on the horizon, and why the hell not? See you soon!