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Planet Earth


Best. Show. Ever.

I've always loved animal and wildlife shows. And this is the first time I fell in love with an entire wildlife series. I used to watch just individual episodes from time to time, and I only used to watch shows from National Geographic and Discovery. If it wasn't made by either of them, I never bothered watching.

This series introduced me to another serious maker of wildlife films─the BBC. In fact, there is one element which makes the BBC documentaries better than those from Nat Geo and Discovery: David Attenborough.

"My voice can soothe the savage beast."

As one YouTube commenter put it, hearing David Attenborough narrate is like listening to your grandfather tell a wonderful story. From his voice alone, you can tell that Sir David is a nice and wonderful person. No wonder animals love him.

1. "From Pole to Pole"

Ants. No, just kidding. Buffalo.

This first episode is designed to make the viewers interested in watching the entire season. It's sort of like this episode is a "the best of Planet Earth" episode. Which is kind of weird, because usually "the best of" should come after everything. Anyway, this episode literally takes you from pole to pole, from Arctic to Antarctic, from emperor penguins to elephants. If you loved this episode, then I guarantee you'll love the series.


The Hunger Games

Hungry for more.

I know a lot of people who liked/loved the movie, but to be honest, it left me disappointed. I know very well that book-to-film adaptations are tricky, so I had low expectations on the film, except maybe for its story. Yet, I still foot-stomped my way out of the theater. Just consider this a book fan's self-righteous rant on how things should have turned out on the big screen.


Downton Abbey. Series 1

I'm not quite sure why I took a liking to Downton Abbeya British-American period drama about the Earl of Grantham, Lord Robert Crawley (Hugh Bonneville), and his familyhis wife and Countess of Grantham Lady Cora Crawley (Elizabeth McGovern), and their daughters Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery), Lady Edith (Laura Carmichael), and Lady Sybil (Jessica Brown Findlay), including his mother, the Dowager Countess of Grantham, Lady Violet Crawley, played by the always magnificent Maggie Smith.

Watch it for the sole reason of her acting prowess.

But not only do we follow the story of the Crawleys, but also the people who work at Downton Abbey. We see who are up to no good and those who are loyal to the family and their jobs. The carefully crafted intertwined stories of the upstairs and downstairs is, I think, one of the series's great strengths. Though these people are not equal in stature, their troubles and joys are of the same weight.


The Vampire Diaries. Season 3, Episode 17: "Break On Through"

This is why no one ever succeeds in killing Damon.

This episode showcased our elder Salvatore brother's strengths: the tactless statements, realistic life outlook, flirty gestures, a little bit of rage, and some human compassion. Don't you just love this guy?

But the real highlight of this episode is hopefor Elena and Bonnie's friendship, for Jeremy's normal life (and for his return, though I dare say), for Alaric's mental health, for the Damon and Stefan's brotherhood, for Stefan and Elena's love (darn it!), for Stefan's self-control, and... getting rid of The Originals. I wonder what would Damon do after/if everything else falls into place.

Caroline's scolding of Jamie made me miss our Aussie bad-ass; Klaus, more. Now that there's a real threat (again; and credible threats of Original vampires' demise don't come around too often) to the hybrid and all other Originals (oh no, please, not Elijah!), would the writers really kill them all off?

*screencap by VLC


The Secret Circle. Episode 17: "Curse"

Daddy's a scheming little bastard... just like Jake.

The Conant-Blake curse is bad for Jake, I guess. But it's also a fake curse. Tsk, tsk, bad Daddy. But I guess I have to thank him. Adam and Cassie together is too easy. On the other side of the semi-circle, Faye lost a boyfriend but gained two girlfriends. Lee's out and Eva's power has been given back to its rightful owner.

I can't say I'm pleased with this episode especially after the last one which I thought was promising.

*screencap by VLC


New Girl. Episode 17: "Fancyman (Part 1)"

Well, hello there, Mr. My Best Friend's Wedding.

Jess and Nick are on an "Occupy (people with phones, money, a kind heartyou fill in the blank)" phase, if you could call it that. Or Jess will find out how it's like to be with a rich, stable guy and Nick (I hope) realizes he wants to be a lawyer or even just grow up. And Schmidt and Winston are on a Quiz Night thing.

I can't remember why I even started writing about this show.

*screencap by VLC


The Hunger Games Review, or Jennifer Lawrence Makes Me Hungry


For this review, I shall be discussing how to do a proper adaptation, by showing you how not to do a proper adaptation.

And Stanley Tucci will show you how to rock blue hair.

In my opinion, this film failed because it was trying too hard to be faithful to the book. And no surprise. The author of The Hunger Games books was, in fact, co-screenwriter for this. And I'm pretty sure Suzanne Collins, talented writer though she is, knows very little about adaptation.


Dr. Seuss' The Lorax 3D Review, or Dr. Seuss is Turning in His Grave


Let's start off with...

The 3D Review 
I've heard people comment on my 3D reviews, saying that they've had a lot of nosebleeds, because they found the reviews to be too technical and jargon-filled. That's because the 3D part of the review was meant for stereographers and people interested in stereo photography. So you can just skip to the regular review.

"Move along now... move along."

All I have to say about the 3D for The Lorax is... not bad. Good job, Illumination entertainment. But in one shot, when the subject went out beyond the screen plane, the stereography was too strong. The separation was too great, it was unnatural, and thus a strain on the eyes. But that was just one shot.

And now, we go on to...

The Regular Review
Just how true to the source material should an adaptation be for it to still be considered an adaptation?

"You tell me!"

I don't really know how true you have to be, because I don't really know the gauge for measuring truth. I rely more on feel. If it feels more or less like the book, then the adaptation works. Or if the film elicits from you the same emotions as the original, then it works as an adaptation.

This film, therefore, does not work as an adaptation.

If we go by feel, then this obviously fails. It feels nothing like the book. The story is definitely set in the modern world, and no amount of crooked architecture will make it feel like a Seussian world (I just made that word up). The human characters aren't even drawn in the Seussian style.

Too pretty by half.

If we go by emotions, then this film fails as well. The original book had the feeling of whimsy, of wonder, and of straight-up Seussian senselessness. If you got any of those emotions while watching this film, then I'd like to ask what you've been smoking, and I'd like to have some of that.

Basically, the only things that looked legitimately from the Dr. Seuss universe were the trees, maybe the houses, and the annoying goldfish.

"We have teeth!"

My point is, since this film has departed quite far from the book, it can actually stand alone as an original work in itself, which is a movie about caring for the environment.

And for that, you don't need the Lorax anymore.

But you still need a villain with a really bad haircut.

Dr. Seuss' The Lorax. USA. 2012.

Rating: Six out of ten.


The Vampire Diaries. Season 3, Episode 16: "1912"

Oooooh. Is that what "moderation" means?

The Vampire Diaries just reminded us that it's about family, specifically about the Salvatore brothers. I wonder if Stefan would ever be able to live in moderation. He should listen to his older brother. I must admit it was pretty creepy seeing the bad-ass brother be emotional. Just don't make out, okay, bros?

Guilty and not guilty. What the?!

Meanwhile, the serial killer story arc had some interesting twists and turn. I bet we'll see more of Samantha Gilbert and meet present-day Sage very soon. And that doesn't mean Flirty Doc is family now. Sorry, but no.

Aren't they just made for each other?

I find Elena's reaction to seeing the brothers feed hypocritical. They're vampires so deal with it, girl, every aspect of their humanity and vampire-ness. Maybe she should just end up with Matt. Hmm. Klaus wants it, and he almost always gets what he wants. Speaking of, who else missed his Australian accent?

*screencap by VLC


The Secret Circle. Episode 16: "Lucky"

One guy can never handle two. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.   

My favorite bitch girl has got competition. I wonder if it's Faye's dark side powers (if she's really Blackwell's other spawn in the circle) in that OD'd girl. Ethan is one jealous traitor bastard--lame and weak. Cassie and Adam are destined and doomed at the same time. Hooray for Jake!

If only someone or something can stop them (and these crows?) from mating.

It's quite promising for six more episodes of the first season. You know, even Melissa is kind of being productively part of the show. But I don't know if it's enough to save The Secret Circle. Even a decent-looking sailor with a thick Australian accent might not be able to.

Will Grant be just part of the destruction or distraction?

*screenshots by VLC


World Icons: Encylopedia Britannica Print Edition (Or As Ted Mosby Says, "Encyclopædia")

Geeky Gadgets

Nowadays, if you want to know something, Wikipedia will give you the answer in seconds. Less than a second, even, depending on your internet connection speed.

But back in the day, before Wikipedia, if I wanted to know something, it took me at least an hour.

One time, I wanted to learn something about "Ireland". I headed to our bookshelf and pulled down Volume 21 of the Macropædia.

To write "æ", type Alt+145.
Alt+146 for uppercase.

As you can see, "Ireland" is the last entry in the book. But whenever I did my research, I never jumped directly to the subject I was looking for. I would pass "India", "Indiana", "Innocent (Pope)", and "Ipswich", among others, before I got to "Ireland".

Researching might have taken a lot longer back then. But I got smarter by quite a few subjects more. And I regretted nothing.

I've also just realized since we aren't a British-influenced country, shouldn't we have had the Encyclopædia Americana instead?

The Encyclopædia Britannica can also be used as seat-raisers (like what you put under a kid who sits down in a chair that's too big), for punishing kids (by making them balance a book on both hands while letting them kneel on rock salt), and for making tunnels and bridges for your toy cars.

If only I had the cash, I would totally buy the last printed edition (2010) right now, if only for sentimental reasons.

"Buy us, you sentimental fool."

Encyclopædia Britannica Print Edition. 1768 - 2012.


New Girl. Episode 16: "Control"

His O.C.-ness is way overboard.

So, Schmidt is a control freak and a neat freak. He's worse when he's not one, courtesy of Jess wanting to change him. Totally not finding it funny. Either you hate Schmidt or you love Schmidt, but sometimes people need to be accepted as who they are.

And Nick and Winston fighting like kids over IOUs. Still totally not laughing about it.

*screencap by VLC


Community Season 2 Review, or Now Let's Move On to Season 3

One good thing about Community is that even if it's set in a college, it's not about college. It's about life. It treats college as a microcosm of life, with all it ups, downs, relationships, friendships, and other scholastic what-not.

Anyway, if you remember what happened in the season finale, you'd think to yourself, "How are they going to get themselves out of that mess?" And how are they, really? Let's find out.

1. "Anthropology 101"


Yes, we know. Yuck.

First on the agenda: Get the study group out of the mess that they're in. The mess created by Britta (Gillian Jacob)'s profession of love to Jeff (Joel McHale), and then his subsequent make-out session with Annie (Alison Brie). But you can't start a 22-episode season with awkwardness. So what do you do? Erase everything. Clean slate. And suspend your disbelief, even for just this episode.

And since this is the season opener, we're entitled to a really great end credits sequence. No, it's not "Donde Esta La Biblioteca?" That's so season 1.


Music Icons: Karl Roy


When I first heard of Karl Roy, I was in first year high school (or seventh grade, I don't really remember), and I thought Roy was his second name, like John Paul. I also remember the ever-catchy lines ♪Sige na people / let's get on down / sige na, sige na, sige na, sige na-haaa♫ from the song "Yugyugan Na". It was only in college when I realized, "Wait a minute... P.O.T. spells 'pot'! As in 'marijuana'! I see what you did there!"

Wait... are those flowers on top datura inoxia?

Although I am not that familiar with his Advent Call days, I believe Karl Roy's best work was with Kapatid. Honestly, I think his vocals would work well with heavy electronica. Also, he kind of reminds me of the insane white boy from The Prodigy.

Above: Caucasian Karl Roy

Karl Roy, by the way, is the brother of Kevin Roy, the lead singer of Razorback, and the first cousin of Judd Roy, one of the defense attorneys for the impeachment case against Supreme Court Chief Justice Corona. I'm not sure if he was related to Jay Roy, one of the hip-hop guys from my high school. He is survived by his spouse Dena Roy and his daughter Arriana.

Before we go, here's one last look at Karl Roy, thanks to our friends from Rogue Magazine and Pelicola.tv.

Requiescat in pace Karl Roy. The best scat man in the Philippines. (Are they called "scat men" or "scatters"?)

Karl Roy. 25 May 1968 ─ 13 March 2012.


Music Icons: Bodjie Dasig

Most people, when met with the news of Bodjie Dasig's death, will give this reaction:

"What a sad day for Philippine television! I loved him in Batibot!"

No, kids. That's Bodjie Pascua. Here's Bodjie Dasig:

Not familiar? Understandable. Most songwriters in the Philippines prefer to stay behind the curtains. But you might remember him from his songs, namely "Ale (Nasa Langit Na Ba Ako)" and the favorite song of philanderers everywhere, "Sana Dalawa ang Puso Ko".

And sadly, he has no Wikipedia page. Filipinos, get on it. Chop-chop.

Bodjie Dasig. 1964 ─ 13 March 2012.


New Girl. Episode 15: "Injured"

He also needs a wallet. And he needs money in it, too.

Nick needs an ultrasound, and the whole idea was blown out of proportion by the gang thinking he had The Big C. Winston gets all sentimental over his car (if you could still call it that).

It's worth more money on a per pound of metal basis.

Is it just me or is New Girl getting all jumbled and fumbled with no clear direction as to where it wants to be by the end of the first season? I think this episode was supposed to air before the fuck-buddy thing Schmidt and Cece had because there was no hint of that whatsoever, nor of Julia and Nick's breakup. Hell, I think this episode should have introduced us to Jess's lesbian ob-gyn friend—I had no idea who she was when she first appeared with Jess and Cece in the loft when they were bitching about (and then later on in that episode, knitting with) Julia.

The only explanation I can think of is it's trying to be like Modern Family, having a season pilot or ender but not feel like it or having any topic under the sun. I think it works great for Modern Family. I don't think it works for New Girl or they're just not doing it right.

*screencaps by VLC


My Ideal Nuffnang Summer...

My ideal Nuffnang summer is getting as far away from the city as possible!

What's summer without that trip to a faraway place where there's an ocean to wash my stress away? Not to mention, the need to beat the heat and finally spend some quality fun time with my friends and family? Summer is that time of the year when the hassles of the bustling city are left to where they belong, the city. Under the clear blue skies, summer is when I can finally enjoy swimming, playing, and chatting with people I don't usually get to hang around with eight hours a day.

But of course, to have a completely trouble-free bonding with loved ones, you have to get rid of some summer hindrances that happen because of staying under the sun for too long. You have to be equipped. And one thing you should never, ever forget to bring under the bright heat of the sun, is sunscreen lotion─which admittedly, I used to forget, so I can vouch for the dire effects of forgetting the most important anti-skin trouble armor!

Learning from past mistakes, and now recently enjoying summer vacations without going home patchy (scaly! ew!) red, I've been using Banana Boat.

Probably named after those boats you ride in Boracay.

First, because it has a cute, catchy, and even delicious name. Second, because I am very picky with how lotions smell and feel; Banana Boat is not at all icky. And third, well, it says so itself: "Banana Boat Sunscreen Lotion. We've got you covered." It pretty much does: Avotriplex Technology to prevent your skin from mutating.

Unless, of course, you want to look like a mutant... then you might want to hit the beach without─I don't know─shaving... and if not, and as much as it pains me to say this because I am actually lazy as hell, take time to shave. Parading around the beach with hairy armpits isn't actually this society's turn-on. So thank god for Schick.

The same makers of Quattro.

"Schick. Free your skin." I've been using it since forever because first, it's actually affordable for its blade quality, meaning it does its job─and second, because it has this green strip thingy that keeps my skin from being irritated.

So, there. Let me rephrase, my ideal Nuffnang summer is getting as far away from the city as possible, not having to worry about my skin, and pretending I'm not a mutant.

Just in case: Here are all three of them together.


The Walking Dead Season 1 Review, or Look Ma, I'm a Zombie!


There are already quite a lot of zombie films out there, and I think the zombie/undead phenomenon already has its own mythology (yet according to spell check, "undead" is not a word). True, the mythologies for vampires and werewolves are quite numerous, and also conflicting. The zombie mythology, however, seems pretty solid.

Here are some basic zombie facts:

  1. Zombies are not alive.
  2. A bite from a zombie will turn you into a zombie.
  3. Most zombies move rather slow, but a lot of them can outrun you.
  4. Zombies cannot be defeated by plants.

It's just a game, people. It's not real.

Anyway, let's check out the entire first season of The Walking Dead.

1. "Days Gone By"


Now that's how a zombie looks like.

Ghost town─check. Zombie outbreak─check. Gross animatronics─check. Morality issues─check. But what's worse than an infestation of zombies? It's finding out that your best friend's been banging your wife.


The Iron Lady Review, or La Streep Is Beautiful, But This Film Is Not


Despite sounding like a movie about Josef Stalin's wife, this is actually about Margaret Thatcher, the first female Prime Minister of Great Britain. And to answer the number one FAQ: Yes, she still lives.

"Yes, I'm alive. And so is my hat."

Seeing Meryl Streep in her Oscar-winning performance made me realize that La Streep, even with make-up to make her look old, still looks very attractive. Also, she can do a decent British accent.

"I can also sing British New Wave songs on karaoke."

This film, however, is quite boring. First, because it makes Thatcher's Alzheimer's an integral part of the story. I'm not even sure she had Alzheimer's, to be honest.

"What do you mean you're not sure?"

Second, there wasn't really any strong narrative. Like, if Thatcher was played by any other actress, I wouldn't even watch this.


And so to draw in the younger audiences, the casting department decided to throw in one actor from Harry Potter, and three actors from Game of Thrones.

Professor Horace Slughorn
Jim Broadbent

"Sometimes I'm mistaken for Alan Alda."

Magister Illyrio Mopatis
Roger Allam


Viserys Targaryen
Harry Lloyd

"Want a pretzel?"

Ser Jorah Mormont
Iain Glen

"I won't get to fuck Daenerys in Season 2? Why?"

If they altered reality a little bit and featured Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan having sex, that might've drawn a bigger box office crowd.

The Iron Lady. UK/France. 2011.

Rating: Six out of ten.


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