Mad Men – “The Milk and Honey Route”

I can’t believe there’s only one episode left of Mad Men. Though there are a couple characters that still need screen time (Peggy didn’t even appear in this episode, which makes me think she’ll be featured heavily in the finale), this episode very easily could have been the series finale. It felt like one for so many characters, particularly Don.  After next week, I’ll be watching this whole season over again.

Obviously, major spoilers, so only read on if you’ve seen the episode.

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Survivor – It’s My Birthday And I’ll Cry If I Want To

Oh man. Who do I hate more: Dan, Will, or Rodney? It’s a tough competition, because they’re all awful. And each in his own special way! This season is the worst.

OK, let’s get down to business. Mike’s plan from last Tribal Council worked, because the whole tribe was in a tizzy when they got back to camp. Tyler and Will had voted for Dan, and he was NOT happy. Mike had a Hidden Immunity Idol, so everyone knew they’d have to vote out one of their own this week.

Rodney’s birthday fell on the Reward Challenge day, and as you can imagine he was pretty chill about it. I think he even forgot himself! Just another day, amiright? It’s like that quote: The year you were born marks only your entry into the world. Other years where you prove your worth, they are the ones worth celebrating.”

JK! Rodney has never heard that saying before. Rodney has never proven his worth, and therefore his birthday means EVERYTHING. Rodney was pretty much guaranteed a reward, since whoever won would take him….but then it was a team challenge. Hahahaha! Sorry, sucker! You’re going to have to earn this one.

Rodney hasn’t won a reward challenge yet. In fact, Rodney kind of sucks at this game, doesn’t he? He might look like a gym rat, but he has not been a threat in challenges. Sierra, Carolyn and Mike won the Reward – an opportunity to deliver supplies to kids at a local village, and to have a BBQ with them.

Rodney, of course, was devastated. Would anyone give up their spot for him? HELL NO! Rodney said “I’m not going to plead a case, but it’s my birthday and it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity.” (In case you missed it, that was pleading a case.)

Yeah, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity. It’s one of the most coveted and memorable rewards in the whole game. They don’t give away cars anymore, so a family visit is the only thing that trumps it. No one gave up their spot for lousy Rodney, and he’s probably still moping about it. “Not one reward,” he kept saying. Hey Rodney! Here’s an idea: WIN SOMETHING!

Rodney ranted and ranted back at camp, annoying the heck out of his teammates. Even Dan (!) thought it was overboard – though he was happy to have the focus shifted off him for awhile. Rodney came up with a plan to pretend he wanted out of the game, so that Mike would feel cocky and hang onto his Idol. It was a foolish, foolish plan. There was no way Mike would fall for it, and everyone knew it.

When everyone returned from the reward, Rodney began his performance. Though, I believe that he was pissed about not getting to go on the reward. That wasn’t acting.

“Best time of your life on MY birthday,” he complained. What a whiner! Mike said, “I see right through the plan.” Nice try, Rodney.

The Immunity Challenge was strength and endurance based, so I thought Mike might have a shot. Players had to hold themselves up by a rope, leaning diagonally towards the water. Mike hung in for a while, but it came down to Tyler and Carolyn – and Carolyn took reward. I’ve got to hand it to Carolyn, she is one tough cookie. If she can make it to the finals, I think she can win. If Mike can make it to the finals (which seems more unlikely), I think he can win. If they both make it to the finals? That could be close.

Before Tribal, the main alliance had to decide how they’d split the votes. Mike was voting Tyler, but everyone else had to decide whether Tyler or Dan posed a bigger threat. Tyler’s a bigger threat to win, but Dan has an advantage that gives him two votes.

I was surprised that Dan voted Mike, rather than voting Tyler. You’d think he’d have voted for the other guy, just in case more votes went his way. But he was safe to trust everyone – they voted out Tyler.

I felt pretty indifferently about Tyler, so I’ve got nothing to say about this. I hate half the people left in this game, and I don’t love any of them. As long as Sierra, Carolyn or Mike win, I’ll be OK.

The finale airs May 20 – there’s a good chance I’ll be out of town for work that week, which is unfortunate. (Well, not that unfortunate – I’m going somewhere warm and sunny. And this season isn’t that great anyway.) At the live finale, they’ll reveal which players will return for a second chance next season. I went to the Survivor website to vote, and thought it was pretty slim pickings. You have to vote for ten women and ten men, and I couldn’t even come up with it. I had to choose a few randomly so I could submit my choices. Here’s who I’d really like to see:

Women: Ciera, Tasha, Teresa, Kelley Wentworth, Kelly Wigglesworth (that’s a Survivor deep cut!) and Shirin.
Men: Jeremy, Stephen (love Stephen Fishbach!), Joe (OF COURSE!), Mike, Spencer  and Vytas.

Nothing reminds you how long Survivor has been on the air like seeing some of the early era cast members. It’ll be interesting to see who returns, but ooof – it was slim pickings.

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Mad Men – Let’s Roll

I was traveling recently, and missed reviewing the last couple episodes of Mad Men. So this blog will do double-duty, since I loved “Time and Life” so much that I can’t not talk about it.

Everything from here on out will contain spoilers, so…

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Survivor: The Ugliest Season Of All Time

survivor worlds apart logoI missed writing about Survivor last week because I was out of town. And though I went straight to bed after the show last night (I’m still recovering from travel and a lot of early mornings), I couldn’t let another episode go by without weighing in.

Because this is the most despicable season of Survivor I’ve ever seen.

These people are rude, belligerent, misogynistic, cruel pigs. I’m mostly speaking about Will and Dan, who both said some truly heinous things in the last few episodes. But I’m also disgusted with the cast as a whole, for not voting these jerks out already.

Sometimes, the best strategic play is to bring the biggest asshole to the end. There’s a simply reason why Russell Hantz, the villain so many viewers loved to hate, never won: he was mean. Good strategy and sound, cutthroat moves get rewarded at the end. But unnecessary cruelty is not.

But this season, there are so many lousy people that taking a jerk to the end won’t guarantee victory. These horrible people like each other, and they’ll vote for each other.

Let’s recap the atrocities. Last week, Will personally attacked Shirin, a woman who has in the past been a victim of domestic violence. He used his knowledge of her family situation against her to tell her that “more people in this game like me than like you in real life”, and other such things. It wasn’t about the game, it was personal and it was disgusting. He never apologized or admitted that he’d gone to far – in fact, ever time he was given a chance to apologize he just made things worse.

Then there’s Dan. Disgusting, disgusting Dan. He’s always been horrible to Shirin. But this week took the cake. First, he said “For what it’s worth, I’m really sorry about what happened at Tribal Council.”

OK, sure. And then:

“Apparently there is violence in her history. If that’s the case, I feel very bad for her.”

Red flags! “Apparently” and “If that’s the case”. UGH I’m already mad.

“However, that being said, Shirin is a drama queen. She is a two-faced liar. She LOVES to play the victim. For Shirin to say that Will is worse than her, that’s hypocritical. Did he go overboard? From what I heard, yes. But when she’s calling him names, when she has no gratitude or appreciation – I’d call that karma.”

I have written SO MANY mean things about Dan here and then deleted them, because I don’t want to be that blogger. But……forget it. Choke on your beard and die, Dan! That was a disgusting thing to say! Shirin does not “love to play the victim”, she was and IS a victim.

That’s not even the worst of it. Later, at Tribal Council, Dan got even worse. Shirin said that her home situation is different than the others – because she grew up with domestic violence at home, she doesn’t really have a family to share this experience with. She has a boyfriend, his family, and close friends.

Dan says he can relate, because he is an adopted child. “All I have for blood in this world is my mother,” he says. Dan added that he has his biological mother, his adopted family, his wife, his wife’s family, their children, and his friends. So yeah, JUST like Shirin’s scenario.

Dan: “My scenario really isn’t much different from hers.”
Probst: “So you had domestic violence in your upbringing?”
Dan: “I’m an adopted child.”

THAT WAS A REAL CONVERSATION. Probst responded and said “Dan, not to split hairs, but that’s a very big difference.” And I was glad. But I continue to think that Probst is too easy on contestants when it comes to misogyny, and he has often shown sexism himself. The fact that Jeff Probst said that this was one of his favorite casts in a long time, when it’s a group of actual monsters, fills me with rage.

OK. I know, this is already almost 700 words just on how despicable this cast is. There’s also a show to discuss.

The Immunity Challenge offered the chance for both a man and a woman to earn protection, by holding up 25% of their starting body weight. Carolyn and Mike won. I don’t care for Carolyn, but I’ll admit she’s crushing it in challenges. I don’t love Mike, either – I want to root for him, but he makes so many mistakes – but I have to admit the guy is working his butt off to win.

Everyone had already decided to vote for Shirin, despite her arguments that she posed no threat to win. So, at Tribal Council, Mike pulled out his Hidden Immunity Idol. He said Shirin would be voting for Tyler, and he’d be voting for someone else. It forced the “strong six” alliance to reveal their true inner structure – players could either vote Shirin in hopes that Mike wouldn’t play the Idol, vote for Tyler, or vote for the person on the bottom of their alliance.

Mike did not play the Idol to save Shirin. I get why he didn’t – he’ll need it to keep himself in the game. For him, the move would hopefully cause enough drama in the alliance of six that he could forge a new alliance. But I was sad to see Shirin go.

Shirin, Dan and Tyler all received votes. So now Dan knows where he stands. And Tyler knows that someone other than Shirin voted for him. It’s magical. (Mike actually voted for Tyler, but not everyone will necessarily know that. Will and Tyler voted for Dan.)

Now Dan knows where he stands, and he has two votes. Mike still has his Idol. Mike is in a much better position than he was before he made this move. So, I guess I’m rooting for Mike to win now. Who would’ve thunk it.

How do y’all feel about this season? Do you hate the players as much as I do? Who deserves to win? Hit me up in the comments.

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Survivor – Arts & Craftiness

survivor worlds apart logoSigh. This was not the best episode of the season, was it? Whenever a player wants out of the game, energy gets sucked out of the season. Once her BFF Hali was voted out, Jenn was ready to follow in her footsteps. It made for a dreary episode.

It’s too bad, really, that Jenn stayed and Hali was voted out. I can’t help but think that if Jenn had gone home last week, Hali would still be playing this game. I hate seeing strong players eliminated while weak ones coast to the end – and I really hate that someone like Dan is in a solid alliance that could very well see him through to the end.

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Game of Thrones – Season Five Premiere

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 10.07.54 PMI won’t be reviewing Game of Thrones weekly this season because, a) let’s face it, my reviews of this show have never been that great and, b) there’s so much Sunday night TV on right now, it takes me all week to watch it.

I did watch Game of Thrones live on Sunday night, mostly because my husband loves it and neither of us were in much of a rush to watch The Good Wife. (I have not been feeling that show lately.) I really liked the episode, and I was pleasantly surprised to be able to follow the entire storyline. I was sure I’d have forgotten entire characters and plot developments.

Click through to read more…

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Mad Men – Au Revoir

Hmm. With only a handful of Mad Men episodes left, I have to say it: this week’s episode didn’t spend these precious remaining moments with people I particularly cared about.


As always, no spoilers, so only click if you want to read about the episode “New Business”.

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