Spoiler-Free Review of “Utopia” on Amazon Prime Video: Where is Jessica Hyde?

**This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“What have you done today to earn your place in this crowded world?”

Utopia is a new television series based on the 2013 UK series of the same name. Utopia stars John Cusack, Ashleigh LaThrop, Dan Byrd, Desmin Borges, Sasha Lane, Rainn Wilson and Jessica Rothe. The Amazon Prime Video series premiered on September 25th 2020 with eight episodes (approximately 50 minutes in length).

After a mysterious cult comic book is discovered, a group of devoted fans begin to bid on it. The comic book has predicted diseases in the past and it may be the key to stopping a new virus that is quickly spreading across the country. After many of the bidders wind up dead, the group realizes that the comic book may be based on truth, leading them deeper down the rabbit hole.

Here is the trailer:

Utopia may hit a little too close to home with everything going on in the world right now, but the mysterious puzzle pieces, conspiracy thrills, and dark trippy madness give it a lot of potential. Is Utopia worthy of your next binge-watch? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Utopia Series 1

Images courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

A plot you can quickly lose yourself in.

There are a lot of Wonderland-esque underlines sprinkled throughout this show which worked to its advantage. The puzzle pieces and clues reel you in each episode and there is enough going on to keep you invested without being overly predictable.

Utopia Series 2

Images courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

Familiar faces and characters to root for.

John Cusack is the star of the show, but I was pleasantly surprised to see Happy Death Day’s Jessica Rothe as well. As each character is revealed, we learn more and more and I thought that there was a great dynamic between them all.

Some characters are more jaded than others and this show is not afraid to kill off characters, but it does a good job of balancing the shock value with consistent characters you want to see survive.

The Cons:

Utopia Series 3

Images courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

Weird timing.

I can’t ignore the timing of the release of this show and while I am fine separating it from the real events of the world, it does bring up a lot of conspiracy theories and ulterior agendas that may seem unwelcomed during this time. I think that as long as you can separate yourself from that and treat this as a work of fiction (which it is), you can still thoroughly enjoy the watch.

Extreme violence and torture shown.

This is not necessarily a con, but I think that sensitive viewers should consider passing on this one. Amazon Prime Video does a good job of putting up advisories prior to the episodes with extremely disturbing content and you should pay attention to those for sure. Beware the spoon…

So am I in or out?

Utopia Series 4

Images courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

I’m in!

Sure, there were some cringe-worthy scenes and some outrageous plot twists, but this show answered my call and then some with a fast-paced binge-watch. The show drew me in from the very first episode and held my attention the entire time.

If you enjoy conspiracy thrillers, Alice in Wonderland, and mysterious puzzles, you are in the right place!

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Utopia in the comments section below. Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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Ranking the top 5 moments from “Supernatural” season 14 episode 4: “Time To Slice and Dice!”

Happy Friday TV fans!  Everyone enjoys a good horror movie marathon.  Well maybe some people more than others, but what happens when the horror comes to life?  Is it your dream come true or your worst nightmare?  After watching the CW’s Supernatural season 14 episode 4, Dean pretty much indicated that this is the coolest thing ever and I agree, as this has been my favorite episode so far this season.  Supernatural did what it does best, providing us with some laugh out loud funny moments with some campy horror mixed in.  More of this please!  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch yet.  In last night’s episode, “Mint Condition,” Sam tries to get Dean out of his funk by telling him about a case that involves toys coming to life, which immediately grabs his brother’s attention.  As Sam and Dean try to figure out exactly what they are dealing with, they both bond with a different comic book store owner and Sam finally reveals why he hates Halloween.  My top 5 moments from Supernatural season 14 episode 4 are:

5

“Our life is a scary movie.”

In the beginning of the episode, Dean is enjoying some pizza and watching a horror movie marathon, which includes one starring “Hatchet Man” with the catch phrase, “Time to Slice and Dice!”  I have to admit that Dean was absolutely adorable in this scene, but Sam is not too impressed with Dean’s decision to stay in his room all the time.  While Dean listens to Sam, he takes this time to comment on the fact that Sam has shaved his beard.  Sam tries to get Dean to stay on track and reminds him that “our life is a scary movie.”

4

“She’s like your wonder twin.”

After Sam tells Dean about an action figure supposedly coming to life and attacking someone, Dean is in and ready for a case.  He enthusiastically says, “Thundercats…seriously!”  Sam and Dean head off to the comic book store to check things out and Dean thinks the girl owner is Sam’s wonder twin right down to her delicate features and luxurious hair.  Sam takes this time to point out the other owner in the horror section with a lollipop, suggesting that he is Dean’s double.  This joke proceeds to go even further, as both Winchester brothers spend some quality time with their “twins” and realize that they actually do have quite a bit in common.

3

“Why do you know what that means?”

Sam and Dean track down the comic book store employee who was attacked named Stuart.  Stuart is beyond hilarious, as he insists on voicing his opinions loudly to his opponent in a video game.  After trying to figure out who might have a motive to hurt Stuart, he talks about his ex-girlfriend who was into “wicca.”  When he talks about “mirl,” Dean is beyond confused and Sam explains that this means “meeting in real life.”  I laughed so hard when Dean asked Sam how he knew what that meant, keeping this episode super fun and light.  Dean suspects that a witch might be involved, but they soon find out that they are dealing with the ghost of the former owner of the comic book store who is not the biggest fan of Stuart.

2

“Unless it’s Godzilla…it’s real!”

After Dean is almost taken out by a flying chainsaw, Stuart ends up in the hospital and they decide to keep an eye on him, as the ghost is clearly targeting him.  Stuart’s best friend hangs around too and Dean starts to realize that actually do have a lot in common and are both huge fans of the “Hatchet Man” movies.  Dean explains, “I like to watch movies where I know the bad guy is going to lose,” actually shedding some light on another reason why he has been locked up in his room for so long, not ready to truly cope with what happened with Michael.  The ghost decides to possess a “Hatchet Man” animatronic and heads to the hospital, which is a thrill for Dean and his new pal.  Meanwhile, Sam bonds with the girl owner and they try and figure out how to stop the ghost once and for all and realize that they pretty much think the same way.  When “Hatchet Man” arrives, Dean grabs an ax and is ready to face his favorite horror movie villain.  Dean vs. Hatchet Man…place your bets!  This fight is absolutely hilarious, as “Hatchet Man” proceeds to press the button on his chest so that his famous catch phrases are said, which makes the battle that much more epic for Dean.  After the key-chain is destroyed, the ghost is eliminated and the threat is over, but Dean reminds us that this was absolutely awesome and I agree!

1

“Why do you hate Halloween?”

The moment we have all been waiting for is here, as Sam finally tells Dean why he hates Halloween so much.  After Sam gives Dean a pep talk on the ride back, Dean agrees to come out of his room more even though he will not be able to just erase what happened with Michael.  Now that this is resolved, Dean takes this opportunity to find out exactly why Sam hates Halloween.  After initially saying, “You don’t want to know,” Sam finally opens up and talks about a girl named Andrea he used to like and how she invited him over for a Halloween party.  Sam had been super nervous and when he had to bob for apples, he ended up puking everywhere…even on Andrea.  Sam spent the rest of the night hiding out in the woods traumatized while he waited for Dean.  Poor Sam!  Dean decides that it’s time for him to get over this and that they can dress up as a “dynamic duo” next year like Batman and Robin or perhaps Thelma and Louise, which is beyond hilarious.  Overall, this episode was extremely entertaining and I have a feeling I will continue to watch it every Halloween.  Let’s keep these episodes coming!  Stay tuned!

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Supernatural in the comments section below.  Happy viewing!

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Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

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I am so excited to announce that my book, The Search for Alice, is now available!  If you enjoy fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery, then this might be the book for you or someone you know!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I hope you enjoy!

When Kallie Bennett, a jaded teenage girl plagued by her alcoholic mother and her peers molded out of sheer bubble gum perfection, chases after Alice in Wonderland herself, she ends up lost in her own version of Wonderland, which forces her to face her utmost fears and introduces her to familiar characters with a dark twist. Among these characters is Ches, a gorgeous vampire with a conflicted conscience, who becomes Kallie’s guide and blossoming love interest. She also crosses paths with Queen Hartley, a manipulative witch who has the power to strip away one’s memories and imagination, which brings a bone chilling new meaning to “off with their heads.” In The Search for Alice, Kallie starts to realize that her Wonderland is just as frightening as her own reality and that she cannot always run away from her problems. She must figure out a way to defeat Queen Hartley and return home before it is too late, but she soon learns that escaping Wonderland means leaving Ches behind forever.

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