Spoiler-Free Review of “The Babysitter: Killer Queen” on Netflix: They’re Back

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

“Join us and be the best version of yourself…”

The Babysitter: Killer Queen is the sequel to the brilliant horror comedy, The Babysitter, which starred Samara Weaving. The sequel was released on Netflix on September 10th 2020 and runs for an hour and forty-five minutes. It stars Judah Lewis, Emily Alyn Lind, Jenna Ortega, Bella Thorne, and Robbie Amell.

In the sequel, we catch up with Cole approximately two years after that fateful night when his babysitter and her demonic cult friends tried to have him sacrificed to the devil.

Here is the trailer:

The Babysitter: Killer Queen has a difficult job, as it is tasked with keeping up with the original film, which was just pure horror comedy fun. The sequel lacks the presence of Samara Weaving as its lead, which does give other supporting characters the chance to step into the spotlight. But does it measure up? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

 

The Babysitter Killer Queen Netflix 1

Images courtesy of Netflix

Our favorite characters return!

Well, we are missing one key character, but I have to say that it was a lot of fun to see our favorite demonic cult misfits return from the dead. Sonya is back with cookies, Allison explains the difference between “fuck-me pumps” and “fuck-you pumps,” John shows off his dance moves, and Max just wants to kill people and is actually really psyched to see Cole showing some improvements since he was last here.

The humor and chemistry between these characters is pure magic. More please!

The Babysitter Killer Queen Netflix 2

Images courtesy of Netflix

Jenna Ortega steals the show.

If you’re like me, then you may be worried that the film is missing something without Samara Weaving, but luckily Jenna Ortega steps in perfectly as the character to root for. New girl, Phoebe, is bad-ass and then some. She really gave quite the performance and I have to say that I actually preferred her to Cole.

He could really learn a thing or two from her…and perhaps he will. I loved Jenna Ortega in You season 2 and I am looking forward to seeing her in Scream 5, but she definitely delivered in this film.

A satisfying ending.

There will be no spoilers in this review, but let’s just say that you will definitely want to stick around for the end. A lot is revealed and it actually helped turn the film around for me. 

The Cons:

The Babysitter Killer Queen Netflix 3

Images courtesy of Netflix

Too much set-up and way too long.

The first film ran for about 85 minutes, which was the perfect length. We got a little set-up in the beginning and then we were thrown into the heart of the movie rather quickly, which kept up the fun and pace. In the sequel, the movie really drags and is much too long. We get a lot of set-up about Cole’s life in the beginning which I could have personally done without.

Flashy over-the-top scenes.

Even though the kills were outrageous in the first film, they somehow felt more raw and believable. The kills and effects in this film were way over-the-top and just felt silly at times. The magic from the first film was absent in a lot of scenes, but there were some flickers of it here and there.

So am I in or out?

The Babysitter Killer Queen Netflix 4

Images courtesy of Netflix

I’m about 50/50 on this one.

I absolutely adored the first film and I had high hopes for the sequel, but it felt like the same plot in a different setting for the majority of the movie. There wasn’t anything really original about the film, but it did have its charms. While not all of the humor landed, there were some parts that were genuinely funny and I loved the chemistry between the characters.

The ending helped make this film a lot more enjoyable, but not every film should get a sequel…

That being said, there are glimmers of fun and nostalgia in this film and I think that it is worthy of a watch if you are a fan of the first film. 

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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Spoiler-Free Review of “Lovecraft Country” on HBO: Jaw-Dropping Terror

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

“Stories are like people…you just try and cherish them and overlook their flaws but their flaws are still there…”

Lovecraft Country is a new series from executive producers Misha Green, Jordan Peele and J.J. Abrams. The show premiered on August 16th 2020. It will feature 10 episodes, airing weekly (approximately 55-60 minutes in length). The show stars Jonathan Majors, Jurnee Smollett, and Courtney B. Vance.

Based on the novel by Matt Ruff, Lovecraft Country introduces us to Atticus Freeman, a former African-American soldier who is on a quest to find his missing father during the 1950’s. His uncle and former childhood friend agree to help him, as they encounter threats involving racism and the supernatural along the way.

Here is the trailer:

Lovecraft Country starts off with an out of this world opening that will immediately have you questioning reality. While the show brings us some frightening horror that will leave goosebumps on your flesh, the real terror is embedded within the racism and white supremacists, reminding us that monsters and evil can come in many forms.

But, has Lovecraft Country done enough to continue capturing our attention week after week? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Lovecraft Country HBO 1
Images courtesy of HBO

A talented cast with lots of potential.

The characters are intriguing, but we have a lot to learn about them. However, I can say that the performances are already beyond brilliant. I just hope that we get the character development we need because these three actors are so incredible and I want to continue watching them shine across the screen.

Lovecraft Country HBO 2
Images courtesy of HBO

The last thirty minutes of the pilot episode are beyond terrifying.

My attention may have been wavering throughout the setup of the episode. The pilot is actually quite long, but when I got to the last thirty minutes, it was like time stood still. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time and there were some moments that actually truly frightened me. I definitely felt the J.J. Abrams vibe here, but it worked. More please! Although…I might have to watch with the lights on.

Lovecraft Country HBO 3
Images courtesy of HBO

Visually breathtaking.

The lighting and the colors used were just stunning. I also thoroughly enjoyed the soundtrack. It really helped transport me somewhere else without overdoing it.

The Cons:

Lovecraft Country HBO 4
Images courtesy of HBO

Slow moving at times.

It felt like there was a lot of setup throughout the episode, but almost for the wrong things. I wanted to know more about our main characters, but my attention began to trail off several times and this was a long episode.

I’m not really sure what this show wants to be.

While I knew that there would be several genres blending together in this show, I was a little lost at the end. There are elements of sci-fi, horror, and drama, but I’m not sure if the show has necessarily claimed its true identity just yet. However, I’m still invested enough and I would like to find out more.

So am I in or out?

Lovecraft Country HBO 5
Images courtesy of HBO

I’m in about 75 percent! The last thirty minutes changed my tune quite a bit. The show reveals a lot and really exposes the horror of Sundown towns and extreme racism. There is enough going on to give this show the potential to become something truly magnificent. However, I’m hoping that its wavering identity doesn’t get in the way because this talented cast deserves an entertaining story. Either way, I’m planning on watching the remaining episodes and I have high hopes.

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Lovecraft Country 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 “Scream” movies from Best to Worst

“What’s YOUR favorite scary movie?”

A timeless question for sure and the start of it all in the popular Scream franchise. With Courtney Cox’s recent announcement about confirming her role in Scream 5, I thought it would the perfect time to re-visit the other Scream films and rank them from best to worst.

There’s just something about Scream. It has it all. It nails the comedy, it gives us plenty of slasher horror scares, and it is just one of those movies you can watch over and over again. Trust me, it would alarm you how much I have actually watched these movies…

Please note some spoilers are ahead.

Without any further delay, let’s find out exactly how I ranked the Scream films and why.

1

Scream (1996)

Scream
Images courtesy of Miramax

The original film is the best one by far. It is actually my favorite movie of all time and I think that it really set the bar for slasher movies in the 90’s and the early 2000’s. The opening scene was so shocking the first time I watched it. I remember thinking that Drew Barrymore was going to be the star of the movie and then so much for that.

However, Neve Campbell was the perfect Final Girl as Sidney Prescott. I pretty much loved every single character in this movie and I still think that Tatum deserved better.

Matthew Lillard and Skeet Ulrich also made quite the tag team and I will be forever woozy watching them.

Scream 1
Images courtesy of Miramax

There’s just something about the original movie that stands the test of time for me. I find something new every single time I watch it and I am so impressed by all of the clever Easter eggs and references sprinkled in to give fans a sense of nostalgia while creating something iconic at the same time.

Standout Death: 

Drew’s shocking demise in the opening scene of the movie is probably one of the most brutal and violent deaths. It still upsets me when I watch it now, but Tatum’s encounter with the garage door was also really memorable.

Scream Tatum
Images courtesy of Miramax

I mean, she did want to be in the sequel…

2

Scream 2 (1997)

Scream 2 Movie
Images courtesy of Miramax

The sequel actually really holds up. There is even a hilarious class discussion where sequels come up. It’s hard to live up to the original, but Scream 2 does a fantastic job of keeping up the pace.

We get a new environment for Sidney in this film. She’s in college now, which was a welcomed change as we got to meet new characters and say hello to some familiar faces as well. A copy cat killer is on the loose with the release of the movie, “Stab,” which actually ends up starring Tori Spelling. Well played!

There is a sense of maturity in the second film and some shocking reveals as well. Mickey, the creepy film student played by Timothy Olyphant, is a welcomed addition. We get a roommate for Sidney, a boyfriend, and some sorority sisters thrown into the mix. The second film really doesn’t hold anything back and wasn’t afraid to kill off a main character…even though I wish he would have stuck around.

Standout Death: 

Sarah Michelle Gellar’s demise was unfortunate, but this scene was pretty epic. I still yell at the television screen and tell her to use her Slayer strength, but SMG doesn’t always luck out in horror movies…

Scream 2 Sarah Michelle Gellar
Images courtesy of Miramax

We still love seeing her anyway though!

3

Scream 4 (2011)

Scream 4
Images courtesy of Miramax

It’s been quite some time since we checked in on Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, but Ghostface is back and ready to shed some new blood. We get a new set of characters in the fourth film and are introduced to Sidney’s cousin, Jill, played by Emma Roberts.

As the familiar kills return, everyone is danger…including Sidney. We get a shocking twist in this film that made it worth the watch and a lesson about not “fucking with the original.” Well said!

Standout Death: 

The word “clear” comes to mind for sure. Jill’s death was quite “shocking.” I also thought that Kirby deserved a lot better and really showed off her knowledge about horror films. There are some theories floating around that she could still be alive (similar to Stu) since we never actually saw her dead, but either way, she deserved better!

4

Scream 3 (2000)

Scream 3
Images courtesy of Miramax

Yeah, so on to the third film. It is my least favorite in the franchise. Courtney Cox’s micro bangs may have been the real horror of this film, but the third film always just fell a little flat. Part of that probably has a lot to do with the change in writer, but Scream 3 does have some entertaining moments.

I loved that we were able to see Randy on video with his rules about trilogies…even though Scream moved past the three films. There are some comedic moments between Gale and fake Gale along with Dewey, but the film just didn’t have the same balance of comedy and slasher fun that I was accustomed to.

Standout Death: 

The explosion killing Tom was kind of shocking, but overall the death scenes were all just kind of okay in this movie…

Overall, the Scream franchise is iconic for me and it always will be. Let’s not forget that we also got a short-lived television series on MTV. The first two seasons were actually pretty decent, but the third one was all over the map. However, I do know some fans who actually enjoyed it and there were some fun cameos.

Scream 5 is looking to release some time in 2021, which would be the 25th anniversary of the films. I am looking forward to seeing it, but I also think that we need to shake things up and kill off another main character.

Our Final Girl, Sidney Prescott, has certainly been through a lot over the years, but she will continue to be my favorite Final Girl of all time and I will always root for her.

Which Scream films did YOU enjoy most?

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on the Scream films in the comments section below. Thank you so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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READ IF YOU DARE…

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Ranking the Top 5 “Nightmare on Elm Street” Films

One…two…Freddy’s coming for you.

Three…four…better lock your door.

Five…six…grab your crucifix.

Seven…eight…better stay up late.

Nine…ten…never sleep again…

Happy Wednesday TV Fans! With the lack of new programming, I have been re-visiting several film series and I was beyond thrilled to discover that HBO Max has all of the Nightmare on Elm Street films available to watch!

After quite the marathon, I started to think about which films held up and which fell flat. There are 8 NOES films, (not including Freddy vs. Jason) but today I will be ranking my top 5 films of the franchise. Please note that some spoilers are ahead.

Freddy is cool. Freddy is funny and Freddy will give you some nightmare for sure…along with some disturbing images that will forever be embedded in my brain. Robert Englund is absolute perfection as Freddy Krueger and I am a huge fan of Heather Langenkamp as Nancy Thompson. Nancy will always be one of my favorite Final Girls.

After all, she’s into survival…

Whatever you do, don’t fall asleep!

These films really have everything. They are scary, funny, and addicting!

Stars like Johnny Depp, Laurence Fishburne, and Patricia Arquette appear in them as well and we get some pretty unique death and dream sequences that really make the NOES films stand out.

While I thoroughly enjoy the Friday the 13th and Halloween franchises, NOES certainly measures up with these iconic films. After all, Freddy did have an epic showdown with Jason…

Without any further delay, my top 5 Nightmare on Elm Street films are:

5

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989)

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5
Images courtesy of HBO Max

Alice is back in the fifth film and we discover that she is pregnant. However, Freddy is back as well and he begins attacking and killing her friends using her unborn child as a weapon. Alice and Freddy have an epic showdown, as she does everything in her power to eliminate him for good and protect her child.

The fifth film is pretty good. I enjoyed seeing Alice again and I thought the buildup to the showdown was decent.

Standout kill: Poor Greta is what she eats, as she is force fed at the table. Gross!

4

Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994)

Wes Cravens New Nightmare
Images courtesy of HBO Max

Nancy is back! Well, Heather is technically back, but I was excited to see her either way. In this re-imagining of the NOES world, Robert Englund and Heather Langenkamp play themselves, but quickly learn that the world of fantasy may actually cross over into reality.

This movie actually really held up for me. I thought that it was unique and it gave fans a lot of nostalgia. Heather/Nancy even yells out “Screw your pass,” bringing us right back to the original film. While I love the NOES film franchise, the films can become repetitive. However, this film really stood out and did something truly unique and different, which I appreciated and thoroughly enjoyed.

Standout kill: Poor Julie gets tossed and thrown around against the ceiling while Heather’s child watches in horror.

3

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988)

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4 Dream Master
Images courtesy of HBO Max

The Dream Warriors are back! But unfortunately, so is Freddy. As he begins to pick off the Dream Warriors one by one, Alice is dragged into this mess when Kristen Parker gives her the power. During Kristen’s fiery death, there is this weird electric blue energy floating around and Alice and Freddy’s abilities overlap.

Freddy collects souls and when he does, Alice begins to inherit a part of them. She starts smoking when she doesn’t smoke, she learns Kung Fu, and she wears a bad-ass leather jacket to prove she is ready to bring down Freddy by forcing him to take a good look in the mirror…

I really enjoy this film and I think it has a fantastic music soundtrack. The kills are really outrageous and Freddy’s humor takes on a life of its own in this one. More please!

Standout kill: Deb’s checkout at the Roach Motel still leaves a bad taste in my mouth…

2

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3
Images courtesy of HBO Max

Nancy is back! After the horrific sequel to the original film, we really needed Dream Warriors and it delivers! In this film, Nancy works as a doctor at a psych ward and helps troubled teens who may be having some fatal nightmares that she is all too familiar with…

Dream Warriors is fantastic. It allows Freddy to truly shine and we also get some interesting concepts on dreams and abilities and powers within them, which I thought was a welcomed and cool feature to prevent the films from becoming too repetitive.

Standout kill: “Welcome to Primetime, bitch” immediately comes to mind…be careful about what you are watching on television!

1

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

A Nightmare on Elm Street 1
Images courtesy of HBO Max

The original still remains as the absolute best film of the franchise for me. It really draws you in and the concept of someone killing you in your dreams is so terrifying, really allowing Freddy to reign as a supreme villain.

The characters are absolutely fantastic in this and Nancy really steps into the spotlight as a bad-ass Final Girl. Plus, she’s got her coffee machine ready under the bed! You have to admire her commitment to staying awake!

Standout kills: It’s probably a toss up between Tina being dragged up the wall in the opening scene and Glen getting sucked into his bed.

Overall, I had a blast re-watching these films. I may have some trouble falling asleep now, but it was worth it!

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts on the NOES movies and your favorites in the comments section below. Thank you so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

PLAY BY THE RULES…STAY ALIVE…

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A harmless night of fun turns deadly for six college friends but the game has only just begun. Take a mystery thrill ride right from your own living room. Dash and Seek is out now!

PLAY IF YOU DARE…

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**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

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Spoiler-Free Review of “Killer Camp” on The CW: Reality TV Horror

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

A horror reality TV series that pays tribute to 80’s campy horror movies? Sign me up please! This show has an amazing premise, as a group of strangers arrive for a reality show called “Summer Camp,” quickly realizing that they are on an entirely different kind of show.

Killer Camp premiered on July 16th, but it was originally released back in 2019 on ITV. It features weekly episodes that will air on The CW.

Killer Camp seems like it could be filled with a lot of slasher and mystery fun, but it’s not easy pulling off a horror reality TV series without looking completely silly from time to time. Let’s not also forget that some people originally thought that contestants were actually being killed off on the series…

Either way, I was all for giving this show a chance and without any further delay, let’s dive right into it.

The Pros:

Killer Camp The Cw 1
Images courtesy of The CW

A worthy killer!

I think the best thing about this show is Camp Handyman Bruce! He plays the part very well and really has the creepy killer vibe down pat. Sure, it’s all pretend, but I have to say that I loved watching Handyman Bruce hunt down his victims. This is the kind of campy horror material I want to see on a show like this.

Super awesome premise.

I love that the reality series combines the idea of a survival game show with a murder mystery. It allows you to participate along with the contestants, as we get clues along the way. Do you think you have the killer figured out? Maybe, but I have a feeling a lot of twists will be thrown our way.

The Cons:

Killer Camp The CW 2
Images courtesy of The CW

Jarring host.

I expect a reality show like this to be silly and over-the-top and in order for you to enjoy it at all, you can’t take it seriously. However, part of the problem was that the host was so over-the-top that it became laugh out loud ridiculous. I understand that he is playing the part, but at one point he was screaming a campfire story at the top of his lungs, which just seemed unnecessary.

Not enough horror.

I went into this show expecting it to be different from other reality shows, but the show mostly centers around games that brought me back to my own school field day nightmares. There was really only a little bit of horror sprinkled in during the episode, which made it difficult for me to stick around to see who would be “killed off” next.

So am I in or out?

Killer Camp The CW 3
Images courtesy of The CW

I’m out on this one. 

I was really excited about this show, but it just fails to deliver. Maybe it will get better as the episodes continue, but I’m just not that invested in it. I realize that it is difficult to deliver an entertaining reality horror series, but I have seen it done well before. I’m thinking back to a show called “Scream Queens” that aired on VH1 and was hosted by Saw’s Shawnee Smith.

That being said, as long as you don’t take the show too seriously, you may enjoy it if you like reality competition shows and I would love to hear your thoughts on it.

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

PLAY BY THE RULES…STAY ALIVE…

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A harmless night of fun turns deadly for six college friends but the game has only just begun. Take a mystery thrill ride right from your own living room. Dash and Seek is out now! I hope you enjoy!

READ IF YOU DARE…

Dash and Seek is available here!

**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

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Spoiler-Free Review of “Ju-On: Origins” on Netflix: Stomach-Turning Terror

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

If you thoroughly enjoy the horror film franchise, Ju-On or The Grudgeyou may have been counting the days until the release of the streaming television series, Ju-On: Origins.

Ju-On: Origins is a Japanese horror series that premiered on Netflix on July 3rd 2020. It features 6 episodes (28-30 minutes in length). The series is available with subtitles or dubbed in English.

It’s difficult to present fans with something truly unique and different when coming from such an extensive franchise, but the series manages to bring us back to the beginning. We witness several timelines involving a house with unexplainable connections to horrific acts of violence and murder, as a paranormal investigator tries to obtain as much information as he can to get to the truth.

This show has the potential to truly terrify you with a satisfying binge-watch, but does Ju-On: Origins do enough to step out from the shadows of the films? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Ju On Origins Netflix 1
Images courtesy of Netflix

The anthology style works.

Since there are only six episodes and each one is actually pretty short, the anthology style works well. We learn about several different characters who have all entered the house in question throughout the late eighties and into the nineties, presenting us with connections and a real mystery.

The series is supposed to represent the true events that actually inspired the franchise and this particular style allows Ju-On: Origins to branch out and form its own identity.

Moves away from jump scares/tropes.

I don’t know about you, but there are several moments from The Grudge movies that still don’t sit well with me. I’m constantly checking under the covers and that sound still haunts me to this day.

The series takes a different approach and moves away from the jump scares that we are all accustomed to. Rather, it leans more on some disturbing scenes of gore and a slow burn approach, revealing that sometimes cruel and unthinkable acts of humanity may actually be more terrifying in the end, which gives the audience something to truly think about.

While the show didn’t really scare me, there were some moments that really made my stomach turn. Seriously, I skipped breakfast today just because of it.

The Cons:

Ju Origins Netflix 2
Images courtesy of Netflix

Slow moving at first.

There are only six episodes, but things really didn’t pick up for me until episode 4. Once the mystery started unraveling more and more, I became more invested and I was actually really interested in some of the character connections and the reveals.

It would have been great if the show had this same feel from the very start, but there are moments in each episode that have that shock value to grab your attention.

Not for the faint of heart.

As I mentioned earlier, there are some real disturbing moments of gore featured in the series. However, there are also some scenes that are extremely difficult to watch and I hope that Netflix considers adding a few advisories to these particular episodes that show a violent sexual assault and an extremely disturbing scene involving a pregnant woman.

As of right now, Netflix codes the show as being for mature audiences, featuring violence. However, I think that extra advisories should be added for episodes 1 and 4. Please be aware of these scenes during your watch.

So am I in or out?

Ju On Origins Netflix 3
Images courtesy of Netflix

I’m about 50/50 on this one. I think that true fans of this franchise will thoroughly enjoy the series. If you are a horror fan looking for something quick to binge-watch, it only takes about three hours to get through all of the episodes.

The show does have some interesting qualities and I really did become more invested during episode 4, but I think we could have captured this feel from the very beginning and some of that was missed with the slower pace.

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

PLAY BY THE RULES…STAY ALIVE…

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A harmless night of fun turns deadly for six college friends but the game has only just begun. Take a mystery thrill ride right from your own living room. Dash and Seek is out now! I hope you enjoy!

READ IF YOU DARE…

Dash and Seek is available here!

**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

Do you love horror series? Of course you do! Please also check out 12 Nights of Horror Series Coming Soon. It’s your home for everything you need to know about new and returning horror television series including new trailers, premiere dates, reviews, recaps, and renewals! 

Spoiler-Free Review of “Penny Dreadful: City of Angels” on Showtime: Evil Looks Good on Natalie Dormer

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

“Until not a soul is left…are you ready?”

The sequel spin-off of Penny Dreadful may not be connected to the original show, but it does present us with a different kind of evil in a brand new time and setting with Natalie Dormer’s Magda at the very center of it.

Penny Dreadful: City of Angels premiered on Showtime on April 26th 2020. It will feature weekly episodes (55 minutes in length). It stars Natalie Dormer, Daniel Zovatto, Nathan Lane, and Lorenza Izzo.

While the show has been long awaited by fans of the beloved Gothic horror series, Penny Dreadful, there will be no crossovers or Easter Eggs to the original series, even though it seems like this could have been done.

The show takes place in Los Angeles, 1938 and follows several groups of characters as the demon, Magda and Santa Muerte clash on their involvement in mortal affairs.

The show certainly has a lot of possibility, but can it live up to its predecessor? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Penny Dreadful COA Showtime 1
Images courtesy of Showtime

Natalie Dormer ignites the screen.

I am already a fan of the Game of Thrones alum, but I have to say that Natalie Dormer was born for a role like this. While it will certainly not be easy to live up to the breathtakingly magnetic, Eva Green in the original series, Dormer is taking on a new character and is embracing her dark side with style.

The opening scene leaves you wanting so much more and reveals just how manipulative and powerful Dormer’s character can be.

Penny Dreadful COA Showtime 2
Images courtesy of Showtime

Exceptional cast and gorgeous setting.

The sequel is set in pre World War II L.A. The setting is absolutely gorgeous and I appreciated some of these smaller moments where we got to witness dancing in the street, beautiful outfits, and serene backdrops of the bluffs, transporting us back to a different time and place seamlessly.

The rest of the cast is talented as well, which should work in their favor, as they have the potential to really light up the screen with character dynamics and relationships.

The Cons:

Penny Dreadful COA Showtime 5
Images courtesy of Showtime

A storyboard of ideas can get confusing…

After watching the premiere episode, there are already so many characters and sub-plots, which makes it difficult to keep up. I’m all for a slow burn type of reveal, but I think that some of these plots are going to get lost in the void. The premiere episode acted like a storyboard of ideas rather than a full developed plot, which could be problematic.

Penny Dreaful COA Showtime 4
Images courtesy of Showtime

Don’t bench your best player…

Natalie Dormer is the best part of this series right now and yet she is taking a back seat in the premiere episode. While I understand that the show is focusing more on her whispering in the ears of men to convince them to do evil, she honestly deserves more than this.

I love seeing her take on different characters as she hides her true identity as the demon, Magda, but it seems like we are stifling a major asset on this series and I just honestly want to see more of her. Let her shine!

Not enough supernatural elements.

The original series did a fantastic job of transporting us into a world of Gothic horror as we met familiar characters from literature with a unique and dark spin. While I understand that the show is going in a new direction, I don’t want it to lose that supernatural spark. There are a lot of elements in history to explore during this time, but let’s tell a new story filled with legend and magical possibility.

So am I in or out?

Penny Dreadful COA Showtime 3
Images courtesy of Showtime

Right now, I’m honestly about 50/50. The show has the potential to be something extraordinary. We get this interesting clash between the demon, Magda and the legend, Santa Muerte, which could really help the show find its own entertaining path, but I have a feeling that a lot of things will get lost in the midst of an over-complicated plot.

I’m going to give the show a few more episodes because Natalie Dormer honestly deserves it, but I really hope that this slow burn mystery can just start lighting things on fire already.

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Penny Dreadful: City of Angels 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 “The Walking Dead” Season 10 Episode 15 “The Tower”

Happy Monday TV fans! After watching AMC’s The Walking Dead season 10 episode 15, we were reminded that “it’s so hard to take a chance on people in this world,” but every now and then, it pays off to open up to a new potential friend.

Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch yet. 

In last night’s episode, “The Tower,” we meet the new wild card character, Princess, who certainly makes things interesting. Meanwhile, Aaron and Alden wind up in trouble and Judith and Lydia try to come to terms with their own losses.

My top 5 moments from The Walking Dead season 10 episode 15 are:

5

“I’m great! You’ll see!”

Meet Princess! She is certainly a breath of fresh air, but Yumiko, Ezekiel, and Eugene quickly learn that she is unpredictable, but can they trust her?

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Images courtesy of AMC

Yumiko reminds the group that when you are alone for that long, you become selfish and crazy and perhaps Princess is a little bit of both, but at least she livens things up for our group. After scaring off their horses by mistake, Princess promises to make it up to the group and wants to help them with their mission.

Everything seems to be going just fine until she leads them right into a minefield. Watch your step, guys! Princess is running out of water canteens. Ultimately, everyone is all right and Princess comes through at the end. Yumiko apologizes to her and it looks like her intentions are pure after all. I personally really enjoyed her introduction onto the show and hope that she continues to make things interesting for us. I have a feeling that she will.

4

“Where are they?”

Meanwhile, Beta continues to channel his inner Alpha to find his enemies, but perhaps he should learn to look around a little harder…

Aaron and Alden are up in the tower, but they may have a difficult time getting out of there undetected. After Beta talks to the wind or to dead Alpha on his face, he seems to know where he is going and Aaron and Alden end up surrounded.

Now might be the perfect time for Maggie to show up…just saying.

3

“That’s your superpower.”

Carol and Kelly get some screen time during this transitional episode, as Carol breaks down and apologizes to Kelly about Connie. Kelly reveals that she doesn’t think Connie is dead and also explains that she does understand Carol and her actions.

Kelly tells Carol that when she first started losing her hearing, Connie reminded her that it was not a weakness…it was her superpower. She talks about how Carol is the “lone wolf” of the group and that’s OK because that is her own superpower.

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Images courtesy of AMC

I thought this moment was heartwarming and so well done. Kelly doesn’t often get enough screen time and this was a really important moment for both her and Carol.

Now let’s hope that Connie is still alive! I need her back!

2

“It’s not OK!”

Lydia is dealing with her own demons as well, shutting down to those around her. After snapping at Judith, Negan tries to approach her, explaining that he just wanted to tell Lydia that he did like her mom.

Lydia initially turns off all of her emotions here and is clearly afraid to process what has happened. She is mad to feel grief because she knows that her mother was a monster, but she still was her mother and that brings up some complicated feelings.

Later in the episode, Lydia finally breaks down to Negan and releases all of her emotions. It’s important for Lydia to grieve so that she can use it and move on, channeling that strength within her.

1

“I want to learn what you do.”

Judith also finds herself conflicted over her own feelings. After Lydia snaps at her, telling her that “not everyone gets to have a mom like yours,” Judith goes after Daryl and tells him that she wants to tag along and truly learn about what he does.

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Images courtesy of AMC

Daryl is hesitant at first, but agrees, reminding Judith that she needs to listen to everything he says. Daryl and Judith come across a Whisperer spy, or deserter, who has been badly injured. She isn’t really able to shed much light on anything and Daryl ends her life.

Judith does not react to this well and explains to Daryl that she could have had a family. Even though Judith told her mother to go and see if she could find Rick, she is clearly feeling abandoned and lost now.

Daryl reveals that he tried to radio over to Michonne, but didn’t hear back from her. Judith tells him that she is helping some people, but failed to mention anything about the possibility of Rick being alive. So, why did she keep this from him? 

I think Judith is afraid of anyone else leaving her at this point and realizes that Daryl might go running off after Rick as well. We get a touching scene between Daryl and Judith, as Daryl tells her that he is her family. Let’s just hope that everyone can be reunited at some point because Judith’s reaction was honestly breaking my heart.

Overall, the episode functioned well as a transitional one prior to a season finale. While we did get a preview of the season finale, we still don’t know when it will air. I can’t wait to see it later in the year and hope that we can finally get some answers about both Maggie and Connie. I also want to see Eugene meet Stephanie as well, which should set up season 11 nicely.

Stay tuned!

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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**Do you love television shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Once Upon a Time, Lost, Charmed, The Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural? Do you enjoy dark fantasy, fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery? Then you may like my book series, Dreaming of Wonderland…available on Amazon! Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well. I really hope you enjoy!

The Dreaming of Wonderland Book Series is available here!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe. Thanks for your support!

 

Ranking the top 5 moments from “The Walking Dead” Season 10 Episode 14 “Look at the Flowers”

Happy Monday TV fans! After watching AMC’s The Walking Dead season 10 episode 14, we were reminded that you should “look forward, not back.” After all, “you don’t know what lies ahead for us…no one does,” which makes the journey that much more important for each and every one of us.

Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch yet. 

In last night’s episode, “Look at the Flowers,” Carol is haunted by Alpha, causing her to look deeper in her own soul to discover what she truly wants. Meanwhile, Eugene heads off to meet up with Stephanie, a new Alpha is crowned, and Beta looks for signs from the old one.

My top 5 moments from The Walking Dead season 10 episode 14 are:

5

“You’re free now.”

In the beginning of the episode, Carol asks Negan again what took him so long. We flash back to the day she let him out of his cell, offering him a chance to help everyone forget what he has done in the past. Negan recognizes Carol as a “certified bad-ass” and so do we, but the task wasn’t that simple and Negan admits to Daryl later on that maybe he did like being undercover for a while.

Negan reminds Carol during present day that she needs to hold up her end of the bargain and escort him back to Alexandria so that everyone believes that he “silenced the Alpha” to save them, but Carol has other things on her mind and reminds Negan that he’s free and it’s up to him whether he wants to wait around for her or not…

4

“A fool willing to believe in future friends.”

Meanwhile, Eugene finally tells the group about his conversations with Stephanie, which puts everyone on edge. We don’t know if Stephanie is an ally or a foe, but Yumiko and Ezekiel are willing to escort Eugene on this journey, determined to stay positive.

Only Ezekiel starts to have several meltdowns along the way. We know that he is very ill and unsure of how much time he has left, but perhaps he can still shed some laughter after all.

We haven’t met Stephanie yet, but the group does stumble upon a city staged with walkers. We get to see some of them sitting down for coffee and even a police officer walker handcuffed, suggesting that someone may be having a little too much fun here.

TWD AMC 1
Images courtesy of AMC

A new character pops up at the end of the episode and seems more than thrilled to see the group, but can she be trusted?

I’m intrigued to find out more! Let’s spice up TWD with a pop of color and insanity!

3

“Just listen…”

After Beta discovers Alpha’s head on a spike, he is less than pleased. Two of the other Whisperers suggest that he is the new Alpha now, but Beta decides to teach them a lesson, pushing one of them close enough to hear what undead Alpha has to say about this while she rips the flesh from his ear…

TWD AMC 2
Images courtesy of AMC

Beta decides to carry Alpha’s head along with him. He cradles her head like a baby, which was beyond disturbing, searching for some kind of a sign. Eventually Beta has apparently found what he is looking for, finally stabbing his former leader’s head.

So, what is Beta planning next? It looks like we may have a split between The Whisperers now that Alpha is gone, but Beta should not be underestimated and I am still looking forward to a rematch between him and Daryl.

2

“We kneel to the new Alpha.”

After Daryl stumbles upon Negan, he is not entirely convinced about his story, especially when Alpha’s head is missing. Before they can hash this out further, some Whisperers show up and decide to bow down to Negan, which really entertains him.

Daryl is forced to kneel as well, but perhaps Negan has an in to truly save everyone now that they are looking at him as the leader. Let’s just hope the power doesn’t go to his head…

I’m also wondering where Lydia ran off to. Hopefully they can get her back before Beta finds her.

Since we know that Beta is seen as a leader as well, the war is far from over, but this should be interesting…

1

“They don’t know what you truly want.”

Even though Alpha is dead, Carol is not completely satisfied yet, as Alpha begins to haunt her. Carol goes on a journey of self-discovery, attempting to discover what she really wants, but it’s far from easy.

TWD AMC 3
Images courtesy of AMC

Alpha drags her back down into the darkest parts of her consciousness, reminding her of Henry, Sophia, Ed, Lizzie and Mika. Alpha represents the voice in Carol’s head that tells her that she isn’t good enough as a mother or as a person.

This journey was so important for Carol to snap her back to reality so that she can move on with her life. The threat may be over, but the real enemies are the inner demons swarming around in Carol’s mind, refusing to release their grip on her.

When Alpha tells Carol to “look at the flowers,” it reminds us of season 4 episode 14, “The Grove.” Carol had told Lizzie to simply look at the flowers before she killed her, which is still one of the most emotionally chaotic episodes I have ever seen on the show.

In this moment, Carol refuses to do the same. She doesn’t just accept her fate. She decides to change it and now finally understands what she wants.

She wants to survive. She wants to live. She wants to finally release all of the demons so that she can move forward.

Welcome back, Carol!

Overall, I thought this was another powerful episode. After Michonne’s own spiritual journey, Carol’s was necessary as well. We certainly moved a lot of other pieces of the plot as well and I’m looking forward to next week’s episode.

Stay tuned!

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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**Do you love television shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Once Upon a Time, Lost, Charmed, The Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural? Do you enjoy dark fantasy, fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery? Then you may like my book series, Dreaming of Wonderland…available on Amazon! Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well. I really hope you enjoy!

The Dreaming of Wonderland Book Series is available here!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe. Thanks for your support!

 

 

Ranking the top 5 moments from “The Walking Dead” Season 10 Episode 13: “What We Become”

Happy Monday TV fans! After watching AMC’s The Walking Dead season 10 episode 13, we were reminded that “what happens next, it’s your fault.” Every choice we make is important. It can lead us down the path we are meant to pursue, but what happens if we take one false step? Will we still end up in the same place or will our lives change drastically?

Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch yet. 

In last night’s episode, “What We Become,” we catch up with Michonne and Virgil, as they finally reach Bloodsworth Island. Things are not as quiet as they seem, as Michonne ends up on a spiritual journey of her own that leads her to an incredible discovery.

My top 5 moments from The Walking Dead season 10 episode 13 are:

5

“I’m not staying here long…”

As Michonne arrives at Bloodsworth Island, she tells Virgil to “stop the bullshit,” explaining that she wants to find the weapons there as soon as possible so she can return home.

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Images courtesy of AMC

Only Virgil has some other ideas, as he ends up locking Michonne up in a cell after she hears voices behind a wall.

It’s clear that Virgil has snapped and possesses some inner demons of his own, but Michonne doesn’t plan on sticking around much longer.

4

“You were supposed to protect us.”

The opening of the episode flashes back to Michonne’s first episode right before she saves Andrea. Only in the flashback, we see that Michonne decides to walk away, choosing not to save Andrea. This twist makes sense later on when we discover that Virgil has drugged Michonne to make things even more complicated.

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Images courtesy of AMC

Virgil tells Michonne not to fight it and she begins to hallucinate. She has a chat with Siddiq and she flashes back to several key moments in the show we all remember so well, showing us what life could have been like for Michonne if she had decided not to save someone.

In this alternate flashback world, Michonne ends up joining Negan and is killed later on by Rick, revealing that every choice we make in our lives does matter. It makes us who we are and even though Michonne is hallucinating, I thought this was extremely powerful and revealing.

3

“Your mercy gives you something.”

After Michonne breaks free, she takes Virgil’s prisoners along with her, who seem to be trustworthy. They knew Virgil before all this happened and fill in some blanks about how he snapped after his family died. Michonne tracks Virgil down and really thinks about killing him, but reminds everyone that if they take his life, they will lose more of themselves.

Michonne’s decision to show Virgil mercy shows us just how far she has come as a character. Michonne could have taken the selfish or easy way out so many times in her life, but every single time she decided to risk it all to save someone, it made her who she is today.

Michonne is still determined to find what she is looking for on the island and Virgil finally agrees to help her.

Seriously, was that so hard, Virgil?

2

“Where the hell did you get these?”

Virgil takes Michonne to a ship that washed up on the island and she begins to go through everything left on board. Michonne is beyond shocked when she finds Rick’s cowboy boots and demands to know where Virgil got them from.

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Images courtesy of AMC

She frantically looks through the other items and finds an old cell phone with a chalk drawing of Michonne and Judith on it. Michonne’s reaction was so incredibly moving, now realizing that there is a chance that Rick may still be alive.

Of course this leads to even more questions. How did Rick end up here? Did he mean to leave these as clues or is someone else trying to get Michonne’s attention? Where is Rick? The questions are endless…

TWD AMC 8
Images courtesy of AMC

Michonne decides to head off the island on the ship with the others to try and find Rick, but Virgil stays there. He reminds her that he promised to leave his wife flowers everyday and he can’t leave her behind.

Michonne understands this all too well, realizing that she also has to follow her path and try and find Rick.

1

“I found something that belonged to the brave man.”

As if this wasn’t already an emotional roller coaster of an episode, Michonne radios over to Judith and explains that she found something that belonged to Rick. Judith asks her if he is alive and Michonne explains that she doesn’t know, but Judith wants her to find out, assuring her that Alpha cannot hurt them anymore. Judith wants her mother with her, but she also realizes the importance of Michonne trying to help her dad.

Michonne will be heading north and promises to still check in with Judith and RJ.

At the end of the episode, Michonne comes across people in need of assistance and ultimately decides to help them, remembering how Rick and Carl stopped to help her when she needed it. This will most likely stall Michonne’s discovery of Rick, but I thought it was the perfect scene to truly remind us that Michonne is a selfless hero and has come so far as a character.

Overall, I thought this episode was brilliantly done and the perfect exit and farewell to Danai Gurira. Michonne’s exit from the show gives me hope that she will one day be reunited with Rick and the rest of her family. It’s so often that we say goodbye to some of our favorite characters by watching them die, but this gave us another way, allowing us to truly be at peace with Michonne’s decision.

The flashbacks were so thought-provoking and emotional, giving us a chance to see former characters while providing us with an interesting perspective on Michonne’s own character development.

Farewell, Michonne! We will miss you and hope to see you and Rick soon in TWD future!

Stay tuned!

What were some of YOUR favorite moments with Michonne across the series? Feel free to drop them in the comments!

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

[twitter-follow screen_name=’TV_Fanatic_Girl’]

**Do you love television shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Once Upon a Time, Lost, Charmed, The Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural? Do you enjoy dark fantasy, fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery? Then you may like my book series, Dreaming of Wonderland…available on Amazon! Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well. I really hope you enjoy!

The Dreaming of Wonderland Book Series is available here!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe. Thanks for your support!