On the D/L

Jun 5, 2014 | Posted by in TV

Friends With Better Lives – Season 1 Episode 8 – “Something New”

In this installment Will finds himself prone to being a victim of beer goggles but instead of unattractive women he finds himself drawn to older women. The situation causes some genuine laughs and severe awkwardness.

A subplot involves Kate not wanting to be the single friend at a wedding causing her to drag Will along as her date. Predictably Will’s beer goggles cause complications and Kate meets an attractive man who is just her type. It goes pretty much exactly as you might expect but some of it can be pretty funny. I get perverse pleasure out of seeing Kate not getting what she wants out of life, I like to see bad things happen to horrible people.

Bobby and Andi are doing the “first night away from kid” thing which goes exactly how it does in all sitcoms ever. Considering their son is never around I doubt this is the first time this has ever happened. Through this Lowell finds that the practicalities of marriage aren’t always as romantic as he thinks they will be. I found Jules being consoled by a young child pretty amusing.

Quite liked this one actually, the characters are well used and there is actually a semblance of a plot with quite a few laughs. There seems to be a slow crawl towards something watchable here.

The 100 – Season 1 Episode 11 – “The Calm”

“The Calm” as in before the storm? Not the most imaginative of titles but thankfully I’m not judging the episode just on that basis.

One thing the show is doing really well is building up the conflict between The Grounders and the kids. It’s great to see the ramifications of the actions of the group be properly explored. In this case the shrapnel from the explosion has caused a severe injury to a young Grounder which naturally heightens the hatred they feel. Clarke and Finn are captured to supply medical attention with the threat of death and the focus of the episode is basically on the growing mistrust between the two groups.

The scenes of Clarke doing everything she could to save this young Grounder were excellent, I really liked how her captors kept getting in the way and assuming that she wasn’t trying to help. It’s a little predictable as stories go but the execution was fairly flawless here. As I’ve come to expect this episode takes Clarke down a really dark path in terms of what she is forced to do. She does so with a stony face too which is quite unsettling.

We also learn quite a bit about Grounder culture which I found to be a little unimaginative. Basically they’re a warrior race who celebrate accomplishments through violent and life risking combat, encouraging their young to be warriors from a very young age. I think we’ve seen this in most sci fi stories ever and it’s not particularly compelling here, it does make them seem somewhat two dimensional but we know that not to be the case based on things we’ve seen previously. I hope there’s more to their society than honour through combat.

As always, I can’t be bothered with the romance crap. The relationships aren’t compelling and they definitely feel tacked on because it’s some kind of network mandated plot point that needs to be in their shows. The pairing now seems to be Raven and Bellamy who don’t fit together at all, hopefully they won’t dwell on this for too long and we can get away from the various romantic shapes that seem to be constantly building.

We spent some time on the Ark where we find out that they’re close to running out of air and some people weren’t on the dropship so therefore survived. There’s not enough time spent on this to give any conclusive answers or build much in the way of interest but there definitely is stuff to build on here.

Overall, this was a strong entry that was brought down by the continued focus on uninteresting relationships. I continue to appreciate how dark this show is willing to get in terms of the characterisation and I also really like how the plots are built slowly without seeming like they’re lagging in any way. Really great stuff.