Checking in on “Fear the Walking Dead” Season 6: Game Changer

Happy Wednesday TV Fans! When we last checked in on AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead, Virginia was still running things while Morgan started to gather his people at his new potential home.

I’ve been waiting for Fear TWD to find its edge again. That raw intense one it had in the very beginning of the series. After several seasons of singing kumbaya without any major character deaths, I was beginning to lose hope.

And then season 6, episode 8 aired which was a complete game changer for the series.

**Please note MAJOR spoilers are ahead if you are not caught up on the series.**

In season 6, episode 8, we check in on John Dorie, who has really lost his will to live. He contemplates taking his own life, but Morgan and Dakota show up to try and get him to come with them.

Morgan was in a very similar situation a while back and John Dorie was the one to give him the motivation to live again so Morgan tries to do the same for his friend.

Fear TWD season 6 episode 8 3

Images courtesy of AMC

Although John Dorie was introduced later in the series, he quickly became a fan favorite. He always saw the good in people and refused to change his moral compass even though the world has changed, which can be a good thing and a bad thing.

His relationship with June was one of the most beautiful ones I have ever witnessed on a show and there is an authentic and real quality to their marriage. It is far from perfect and both of them have run away from their mistakes before, but they always find a way back to each other.

As we fast forward through the episode, John agrees to help Morgan and Dakota clear the bridge but he wants to be left in peace after that. Morgan takes matters into his own hands and radios to Virginia where John is so that he doesn’t have a choice, explaining that he is not going to sit by and let his best friend die.

Fear TWD season 6 episode 8 1

Images courtesy of AMC

After a few close calls with the horde, it looked like we were right back where we started again and then Dakota decided to show her true colors.

John sees the knife that Dakota uses on a walker and realizes that she was the one who killed Cameron. Dakota explains that he ruined her way out and now she needs to continue to keep her secret…

After John puts away his own weapon, Dakota shoots John in the chest and pushes him over the bridge.

We get this incredible moment where John is drifting to the bottom of the water but sees the photo of him and his dad and it is enough to motivate him to make it to the surface.

Morgan confronts Dakota and we find out that she was the one who initially saved Morgan’s life because she thinks that he is the only one who can actually kill her sister.

Morgan radios over to Virginia and tells them to look for John in the water and that he might need help and of course poor June is there.

June discovers John in the water and he has already turned. In a heart shattering moment, she stabs him in the head, which really had my emotions stirring.

Fear TWD season 6 episode 8 2

Images courtesy of AMC

While this is an incredibly heartbreaking moment, this needed to happen.

We needed a major character death to remind us that this is a show about the zombie apocalypse. While I appreciate the messages of hope, there has to be something that truly motivates the rest of the group to stand up against Virginia and this is it.

When you think about the other characters on the show, it had to be John to go. He was the representation of all that is good in the world and when he changed his mind about ending his life, this death became that much more tragic to me.

I also think that Dakota showing her true colors is a game changer. I was honestly getting tired of the Virginia plot and Dakota may be an even more dangerous threat. She’s clearly a sociopath and it goes to show us how dangerous children can be growing up in this world.

Look at Lydia in TWD. She grew up with a monstrous mother and still managed to turn things around, but she could have easily fallen off the deep end. Dakota is the other end of the spectrum and I am really intrigued by this plot and I have to give it to the writers who really made this twist and reveal work in their favor.

As long as Fear TWD continues on this new path, they will be able to reclaim those moments of sheer perfection I witnessed earlier in the series.

Keep it going, Fear TWD! I can’t wait to see what happens now!

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

DON’T TAKE THE JOB…

Girl Number Thirteen Lurking Promo

It was only supposed to be temporary…but when Olivia Crewe accepts a new position that seems too good to be true, she soon discovers that twelve other girls previously had the same job as her. Only none of them lasted for more than thirty days. No notice. Nothing…right before they mysteriously disappeared without a trace.

My new supernatural thriller Girl Number Thirteen is out now! I hope you enjoy!

Girl Number Thirteen is available here!

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Ranking the top 5 moments from “Riverdale” Season 5 Episode 1: “Climax”

Happy Thursday TV fans! After watching The CW’s Riverdale season 5 episode 1 season premiere, we were reminded how quickly life on Riverdale can turn into a Jamie Lee Curtis movie…

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

In last night’s episode, “Chapter Seventy-Seven: Climax,” everyone gets ready to attend the prom, but is this the end for some of our favorite couples? Meanwhile, the videotape killers continue to wreak havoc while Betty and Jughead try to get to the bottom of everything.

My top 5 moments from Riverdale season 5 episode 1 are:

5

“I’m beating it.”

I think it’s worth mentioning that Hiram Lodge is now suddenly getting better because he is beating up everyone in town. Veronica calls the doctors to confirm, but we know it’s only a matter of time before Hiram sinks his teeth into some other dark scandal.

4

“So you’re my competition.”

After the cancellation of Katy Keene, we knew we would be seeing some of the characters from that spin-off show pop up in Riverdale and K.O. Kelly is the first one. Veronica suggests that they have an exhibition boxing match so that Archie can prove his worth to the navy scout.

Archie and KO Riverdale

Images courtesy of The CW

Archie really puts up a fight and he may have actually been the winner in my book, but K.O. takes the victory and Archie has a fit, saying he won’t apply in the future.

I think Archie needs to find his true calling before he spins out of control…

3

“This one’s for you Archiekins.”

Poor Veronica. After finding a song that Archie wrote, he throws it in the trash and tells her that it is no good, but of course we know that she is going to get up on stage and perform the song that he actually wrote for Betty to make things extremely awkward for everyone.

Riverdale Veronica Lodge season 5 episode 1

Images courtesy of The CW

Betty and Archie exchange a few glances and ultimately, Archie breaks up with Veronica at prom. He tells her about the kiss, but they decide not to tell Jughead, but it looks like Varchie will be heading in different directions after graduation.

I have a feeling that Hiram is going to take away that “deputy mayor” offer pretty quickly…watch out, Archie!

While I’m sad about this break-up, I think that Archie really needs to find out who he is without someone. Maybe he needs another spiritual road-trip or something…

2

“Was there ever any doubt?”

Varchie is not the only couple to have some major obstacles to get through during prom. We start off with some cute and hilarious moments with Choni, as they petition to be co-queens of prom.

They have my vote for sure!

Later on, Cheryl asks about meeting Toni’s grandmother and is upset to find out that she has to pretend that she is not her girlfriend. Cheryl takes things into her own hands and goes to see Toni’s grandmother, which leads to more drama.

We find out that Toni’s grandmother doesn’t want her dating Cheryl because she is a Blossom and they have wronged their family for too many years.

Choni Riverdale season 5 episode 1

Images courtesy of The CW

Toni is able to show up to prom with Cheryl and we watch them become prom queens, but the moment is short-lived.

Toni tells Cheryl to give her some time, but Cheryl broke my heart when she was crying in Nana Rose’s lap, explaining that she is destined to be alone.

I really hope that Cheryl and Toni find a way back together, but if I’m being honest, they needed this. There hasn’t really been a lot going on in their relationship lately and perhaps this will allow them both to grow as characters and I’m hoping that they can find a way back to each other.

All hail, Choni!

1

“To surviving this town…”

While all this drama is going on, we also get Betty and Jughead teaming up to bring down the videotape killer or killers. They even go to visit Bret in jail to get some intel and are told to make a snuff movie, allowing us to witness Cheryl and Reggie show off some of their acting skills. Loved the wig, Cheryl!

Riverdale season 5 episode 1

Images courtesy of The CW

David at Blue Velvet Video knows that it is a fake, but Betty turns over the tape of her father when he was a young boy and says he is the Black Hood. They get the invite they have been looking for and end up crossing paths with Jellybean (what?) while trying to figure out who the director behind the curtain is.

During prom, the music is cut short and we witness another film where masked strangers are murdering Dave, proving it is not him. I have to say that these killers have been giving me some Purge vibes and I want to know more.

Archie gets a video at his doorstep and it looks like this is going to unlock even more rage inside of him so we’ll have to see how this plays out.

Overall, the season 5 premiere felt slightly chaotic and all over the place. I realize this episode was actually supposed to be part of season 4 before shooting was put on hold because of the pandemic, but I’m feeling a little overwhelmed and I’m hoping we can put some of the drama aside and focus on the mystery at hand.

I did love seeing everyone dressed up for prom and Betty’s dress was my favorite! But, do you think Jughead could have taken off his hat just this once?

Stay tuned, Riverdale fans!

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

PLAY BY THE RULES…STAY ALIVE…

Main promo smaller

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…

Dash and Seek is available here!

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Spoiler-Free Review of “Ozark” season 3 on Netflix: Edge of Your Seat Perfection

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

Netflix certainly has us covered with plenty of new shows, seasons, and movies to help us during social distancing, but they really hit it out of the park with the latest season of Ozark.

Ozark season 3 premiered on Netflix on March 27th 2020 with 10 new episodes (Approximately 60 minutes in length). It stars Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, Julia Garner, Janet McTeer, and Tom Pelphrey.

If you have never seen the show before, it channels a real Breaking Bad feel. Marty Byrde is forced to move his family from Chicago to the Missouri Ozarks in order to launder money for the drug cartel.

Each season focuses on different business ventures that Marty must obtain in order to successfully launder the money to appease his boss and protect his family, leading to scandal, murder, and secrets along the way.

I am a fan of the series and was eager to see where the Byrde family would invest their time and money next. A casino seemed like the perfect place, but we quickly learn that this may not be so easy when competitors and the FBI begin to stir up some trouble for the Byrde family.

The show is fantastic, but the episodes are super long and sometimes can drag here and there. However, season 3 absolutely picks up the pace while introducing us to some new characters. But does it do enough to stand out from its prior seasons? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Ozark Netflix 1
Images courtesy of Netflix

New character dynamics light up the screen.

I am a huge fan of Ruth Langmore and will continue to root for her against all odds. Seriously, she’s the best. However, I was beyond thrilled when we got some new characters on the show to really spice things up and to develop some of our other characters even more.

I am going to highlight Wendy’s brother, Ben, who comes to visit the Byrde family. Tom Pelphrey is beyond brilliant playing this role and he also helps us see even more layers from both Ruth and Wendy. Season 3, episode 9 was probably the best episode I have witnessed on the show and I think that both Pelphrey and Linney deserve an Emmy for their performances.

 I still have chills from it…

It was also nice to see other characters develop more. Charlotte and Jonah actual earn their own story-lines, which I appreciated, as they interact with Helen’s rebellious daughter, Erin.

The casino background is a nice change of scenery.

We’ve seen Marty invest in a restaurant and a strip club, but I thought the casino was really a bold choice.

Ozark Netflix 2
Images courtesy of Netflix

I have to say that Ruth did an amazing job running the floor and was not afraid to ruffle any feathers if anyone tried to mess with her.

Of course the casino captures the attention of the FBI, which makes things more complicated for the Byrde family, but I was thoroughly invested in all of the schemes and secrets behind the scenes here, which was a welcomed change of business for the Byrde family.

Fast paced edge of your seat moments and cliffhangers.

Every episode had something new and exciting. I was never bored throughout season 3 and the final moments of the last episode will leave you in complete shock. It’s that good. I really appreciated how much this show adapted to keep the pace going steady, as it had the tendency to slow down quite a bit in seasons 1 and 2.

Bravo!

The Cons:

Ozark Netflix 3
Images courtesy of Netflix

The Darlene and Wyatt scenes…

So, while I thought a lot of the new character relationships and dynamics were necessary and intriguing, we don’t need to pair everyone up and we don’t need unnecessary sex scenes with certain characters that really leave a bad taste in your mouth.

Sometimes I think certain characters should really just be abandoned if they don’t further the plot and we don’t need to have them in every scene for them to make a difference.

So am I in or out?

Ozark Netflix 5
Images courtesy of Netflix

I’m in! Since a lot of my favorite shows are delaying production and release, I was beyond pleased to be able to binge-watch Ozark season 3 all in one weekend. This series blends family drama and crime thrills seamlessly. Each episode leaves you wanting more and the finale gave us one of the most shocking cliffhangers I have seen in a while.

Season 3 was my favorite season yet! More please!

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Ozark season 3 in the comments section below.  Thanks 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!

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Ranking the top 5 moments from “Riverdale” Season 4 Episode 13: “Beware the Ides of March”

Happy Thursday TV fans! After watching The CW’s Riverdale season 4 episode 13, I started to wonder what one should really do when the game is fixed? Sometimes it seems like the odds are always against us, but is there still a glimmer of hope to turn our luck around?

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

In last night’s episode, “Chapter Seventy: The Ides of March,” Jughead is accused of plagiarism, as we finally catch up to that horrific night in the woods. Meanwhile, Betty is determined to get to the truth, Cheryl and Toni tag team with Veronica, and Archie contemplates the future of his father’s business.

This is the episode we have all been waiting for!

My top 5 moments from Riverdale season 4 episode 13 are:

5

“I don’t want to think about the future right now.”

After Veronica’s trip to NYC and finding out about her father’s condition, she just wants to turn everything off and have some fun. We get to witness some passionate and steamy Varchie moments as a result, but it’s clear that Veronica is having some trouble dealing with everything.

Riverdale The CW 2
Images courtesy of The CW

Archie continues to be extremely supportive of her even though we don’t really know if their relationship will continue once college begins, but he reminds her that she is the strongest person he knows and that her father needs her.

This inspires Veronica to ignite the competitive spirit in her father, realizing that perhaps she knows him better than anyone else after all.

4

“I can’t do it…”

Archie begins to question his own future in this episode as well. Mr. Honey explains that he may not be able to graduate with his class and college admission could also be off the table for him right now.

Archie risks everything to protect Veronica after a flask is found in her locker, reminding everyone that he has nothing to lose. Archie also has to contemplate what to do with his father’s construction business. After considering selling it, he decides against it, remembering that the business has been in his family for generations.

Archie has a lot of thinking to do, but we are certain of one thing…Riverdale needs Archie Andrews!

3

“It’s time to snap a trap.”

Watch out for Choni and Veronica! They make an unstoppable team! Hermosa goes undercover to do some recon on The Maple Club, but our girls are too smart for her, leading her right into a trap. Hermosa may be good, but our girls are that much better…fact!

Riverdale The CW 3
Images courtesy of The CW

The girls put Hermosa in her place while allowing us to witness a welcomed montage of Choni dancing!

2

“The perfect victim to the perfect murder…”

Beware the Ides of March, Jughead! Things are about to be turned completely upside down for our main character, as Jughead is accused of plagiarism.

Riverdale The CW 7
Images courtesy of The CW

We know this is far-fetched, but Bret and the others are quite convincing, leaving behind a lot of evidence pointing in Jughead’s direction while stealing his laptop.

Jughead is determined to set things right and is also tasked with writing a new Baxter Brothers novel in five days, but Jughead is up for the challenge and decides to lean on Betty for help. Betty convinces him to write up his own story at Stonewall Prep, but is he actually now documenting the moments leading to his supposed demise?

1

“I am the daughter of the Black Hood!”

Betty has some fantastic lines in this episode and proves to be a worthy opponent. She stands up for Jughead and even has him take a lie detector test to prove that he did write his own story. Donna and the others don’t really seem to be intimidated by Betty, but one should never underestimate our girl with her very effective bobby pin!

Later on, Jughead agrees to stand down and leave Stonewall Prep when Bret threatens to release the sex tape that will damage Betty’s reputation for good. They are invited to a party in the woods and we know all too well that this is the night of Jughead’s “murder.”

Bret leads Jughead out in the woods and Betty has a chat with Donna. Donna reveals that she has been doing some digging of her own and admits that she met with Evelyn Evernever. Betty reminds her that “tangerine” has no effect on her, but apparently there is another trigger word that will make Betty turn on her loved ones.

What’s the word? We don’t know, but we are now finally caught up, as Betty is standing over Jughead’s body while Archie and Veronica discover her. So, did Betty actually kill Jughead because of the trigger or is this an elaborate plan to make her think she did?

We can’t trust this group from Stonewall Prep and it’s clear that they are well matched for our group, but let’s hope that Betty can find a way to push aside her guilt to get to the truth.

Riverdale The CW 6
Images courtesy of The CW

Is Jughead really dead? Did Betty really kill him? We’ll have to wait for some more answers, as episode 14 is set to release on February 26th 2020. 

Stay tuned!

What are some of YOUR theories? 

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Riverdale 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!

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Spoiler-Free Review of “The Outsider” on HBO: A Glimmer of Haunting Potential

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

In the midst of this slow burn crime drama, there is this potential for chilling perfection lurking in the shadows.  Combine that with an extremely talented cast, an intriguing plot, and some supernatural elements, and this could be the formula for a hypnotizing new show.

The Outsider premiered on HBO on January 12th 2020 with two full length back-to-back episodes.  The mini-series will feature 10 episodes (60 minutes in length).  It stars Jason Bateman, Ben Mendelsohn, Cynthia Erivo, and Julianne Nicholson.

Based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, The Outsider follows the investigation behind the horrific murder of a young boy.  After evidence begins to appear quite quickly, things become much more complicated with potential supernatural forces at play, causing the lead investigator to question things further.

This slow burn crime drama has the potential to hook its audience completely, but does it do enough in its first two episodes to keep us coming back for more?  Let’s find out…

The Pros:

The Outsider HBO 1
Images courtesy of HBO

An extremely talented cast.

The performances are so captivating and believable from the opening minutes of the series.  Having an all star cast definitely works in the show’s favor.  The characters are compelling enough and there are still a lot of secrets left to uncover, hooking us in that much more.

Some really creepy and gruesome elements.

There are some graphic images in this show, but it adds to the shock and horror behind the crime.  We also get some really creepy moments that I haven’t quite figured out yet, stirring with disturbing possibility.  The use of discord music to set some of these scenes is actually quite brilliant as well, really creating a world of unexplained mystery.

The Cons:

The Outsider HBO 2
Images courtesy of HBO

The pacing is slow…extremely slow.

I watched the two opening episodes back-to-back and felt like I was sitting there for over three hours.  I even almost fell asleep a few times because of that so I’m not sure that a double episode premiere was wise.

Moving forward, I will only watch one episode at a time.  There is a lot to process, but I am really hoping that the show can pick up some steam because that may be its biggest downfall.

So am I in or out?

The Outsider HBO 3
Images courtesy of HBO

I’m in…at least for now.  Episode 3 will introduce us to Cynthia Erivo’s character, Holly Gibney, and I am truly hoping that she can liven things up and start to make sense of this case.

The unexplained mystery is genuinely intriguing and I want to see this unfold, but things need to pick up so that I don’t lose interest completely.

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on The Outsider in the comments section below.  Thanks 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!

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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! 

My performance of the week ending 1/11/20 on TV goes to…

Marlo Kelly as Beth Cassidy on USA Network’s Dare Me.

There’s a new mean girl in town and she can already give Regina George and Heather Chandler a run for their money.  Throw in some over-competitive cheerleading, dark secrets, obsession, and a possible murder, and she may just be crowned the new Queen Bee.

**Please note spoilers have been left out for your convenience.**

Dare Me has aired two episodes so far and I am already completely captivated by Beth Cassidy, played brilliantly by Marlo Kelly.  While a lot of the other characters have potential as well, there is something almost magnetic about Beth. Her wide eye stares and dangerous actions make her a potential modern day femme fatale, but there’s also several layers beneath this tough appearance.

Beth clearly has a weakness for her best friend, but we all know that obsession can be a deadly game, especially when someone gets in her way.  While the cheesy montages are a little bit much, Marlo nails every scene with unsettling perfection.  This may be her break-out role because she is destined for stardom.

In addition, Beth clearly has some family issues going on.  Her father moved in with his mistress across the street and their daughter is also on the squad, which causes even more drama during games and practice.  Being on top of the pyramid is not just a privilege…it’s a necessity, and Beth is willing to take out the competition while keeping a smile planted on her face.

Beth is already set up to face off against our main protagonist, Coach Colette French (Willa Fitzgerald), but will she be able to put her personal agenda aside for the good of the team?  I personally am looking forward to more interactions between these two because the tension is intense.

Coach Colette French does not initially seem to be intimidated by Beth, but she is not an ordinary teenage girl.  There is clearly this jealousy and rage brewing inside of Beth, but she is able to appear so calm and in control on the surface.  Sometimes, that can be even more dangerous; however, as Beth even keeps certain secrets from her best friend, Addy.  Beth is manipulative and calculating and yet we can’t turn away from her.

Marlo Kelly fearlessly embraces this beautiful dark role with perfect poise.  She is a scene stealer for sure and the main reason why I keep coming back for more every single week.

What’s next for Beth?  Well, there is this mystery unfolding slowly week after week and you have to wonder if Beth is behind a possible crime, but is she the obvious choice?  Beth has already demonstrated that she is not afraid to break the rules to get what she wants, but how far will she go?

I can’t wait to find out!  

Stay tuned for a recognized performance on TV each week!

Have a performance on TV that you think is simply outstanding? Feel free to contact me with your nomination for the week by Friday at midnight! 

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

[twitter-follow screen_name=’TV_Fanatic_Girl’]

The Dreaming of Wonderland Book Series is available here!

Dreaming of Wonderland Series Final Chapter Blog

**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!

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 “Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists” season 1 episode 1: A Solid Series Premiere

“Welcome to Beacon Heights University, where excellence is not an option…it’s a requirement.”  After watching Freeform’s Pretty Little Liars:  The Perfectionists season 1 episode 1, I remembered why I fell in love with Pretty Little Liars in the first place.  It’s hard for a spin-off to gives fans that sense of nostalgia, while still creating a unique voice of its own, but I have already been hooked after the first episode and I can’t wait to see the new mystery unfold.  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch yet.  In last night’s “Pilot” episode, Alison DiLaurentis gets a fresh start and takes on a TA position at Beacon Heights University, but is quickly reunited with our favorite troublemaker, Mona Vanderwaal.  Meanwhile, we meet several of Alison’s new students who may wind up being the prime suspects in a new murder and Alison’s presence here reminds us that nothing is ever a coincidence for a Pretty Little Liar alum.  My top 5 moments from Pretty Little Liars:  The Perfectionists  season 1 episode 1 are:

5

“We are and then we’re not.”

After Alison comes to town and is reunited with Mona, it looks like both of our favorite characters from Pretty Little Liars are in desperate need of a fresh start.  We learn the fate of Alison and Emily’s relationship, as Alison explains that Emily had trouble getting over the past.  Does that mean that Alison and Emily will never get back together?  Not necessarily, as they are tied together by a family, but it looks like this relationship has been put on pause for now.  Alison wants to leave the mean girl behind her and truly wants to help her students and make a difference, but wherever Alison goes, drama is never too far behind.

4

“Is it OK to murder a murderer?”

An interesting question for sure and I have to say that I was actually really digging Alison’s lecture.  Can I sign up for her class?  As Alison gets to know her new students, she asks them to participate in a discussion on Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, which is actually quite fitting if you think about it.  We are introduced to several new characters and quickly learn that everyone is a suspect and that appearances can be very deceiving.  No one really stood out to me just yet, but I’m looking forward to seeing their characters explored further as the series continues.

3

“Try and stay away from him.”

Perhaps the most disliked new character is Nolan Hotchkiss, who seems to be the resident bad boy on campus.  Alison notices that Nolan is a lot like how she used to be, using manipulation and blackmail to get what he wants, but there also seems to be a lot of complicated drama with his family as well.  We learn that his sister, Taylor, apparently committed suicide about a year ago and that Nolan’s mother, Claire, played by the amazing Kelly Rutherford, seems interested in Alison because she reminds her of her daughter.  Mona says that by her calculations, Nolan could be dangerous, but can we really trust Mona here?  What other connections does Alison have to the Hotchkiss family?  I’m not sure, but I’m already intrigued enough to find out more.  I’m loving this setup so far!

2

“I know a little bit about manipulation.”

Maybe way more than a little bit, Alison, but it appears that you have truly changed, but the past has a way of dragging you backwards sometimes.  We soon learn that Taylor is actually alive, as Nolan goes to visit her secretly.  So why did she fake her own death and what is the bigger play here?  There seems to be quite an emphasis on the advanced security system on campus, so have the Hotchkiss siblings uncovered something behind that or is there another mystery yet to be revealed?  Alison also finds a picture of Taylor and the resemblance is striking, so is it possible that Alison could be related to Taylor?  Toward the end of the episode, Alison uncovers a message behind the wallpaper in Taylor’s old room that says, “They’re Watching,” which furthers my theory on the security issue, but there is still a lot to uncover here.

1

“There are no coincidences.”

Alison recognizes that there are definitely no coincidences.  After all, she comes from Rosewood.  Alison asks Mona why she is here, but it looks like this all needs to be put on hold, as we find out that Nolan has been brutally murdered at the end of the episode.  Nolan is found impaled on a fence, as everyone gathers around in horror.  All of his friends quickly become suspects and so our murder mystery begins.  However, we are left with another cliffhanger at the end, as Mona starts talking to herself and asking if this was her fault and has someone in her ear piece.  Is Mona actually working for the FBI or some kind of secret agency?  I mean, we know that Mona is extremely intelligent and qualified so perhaps her recruiter position is just a cover.

Either way, I am already completely hooked and I can’t wait to find out what happens next.  The spin-off series premiere really gave Pretty Little Liar fans exactly what they needed, but I am really enjoying the college campus change of scenery and I think this will give Alison and Mona the chance to shine, while introducing us to some new faces who may surprise us.  Stay tuned!

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Pretty Little Liars:  The Perfectionists in the comments section below.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

**I am so excited to announce that my book, The Search for Alice, is now available!  If you enjoy dark fantasy, 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!

The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice Feb 2019

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Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

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Ranking the top 5 moments from “The Purge” season 1 episode 1 Series Premiere: “Step Into The Invisible”

Happy Wednesday TV fans!  “This is not a test, this is your Emergency Broadcast System. Announcing the commencement of the annual purge sanctioned by the U.S. Government.  Commencing at the siren, any and all crime (including murder) will be legal for 12 continuous hours.”  So you have seen The Purge movies and you are ready to set your alarms once again to find out what happens on this particular purge night.  Only this purge is spread across 10 episodes on television.  After watching the USA network’s The Purge season 1 episode 1 last night, I was introduced to several new characters who are about to experience their very own Purge Night.  While some characters leave something to be desired, others did capture my full attention and I was particularly intrigued by the cult that centers on “stepping into the invisible.”  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch the latest episode yet.  In last night’s episode, “What Is America?” the countdown to Purge Night has already started and we step into the lives of several new characters only to discover that they each have secrets of their own, which will most likely cause their past to bleed into their present on Purge Night.  My top 5 moments from The Purge season 1 episode 1 are:

5

“Rich people don’t kill each other on Purge Night.”

Two of the new characters we are introduced to are Rick and Jenna, played by Colin Woodell and Hannah Emily Anderson.  We learn that they are a married couple and are on their way to attend an NFFA party.  As a reminder, the NFFA stands for “New Founding Fathers of America.”  Even though we find out it is to negotiate a business deal that could eventually benefit the poor and less fortunate, it doesn’t seem like a great idea to do this on Purge Night, but their potential new partner apparently only conducts important business deals on this particular night.  Against their better judgment, Rick and Jenna travel to the party, reminding themselves that they do not want to join the NFFA.  Something tells me that they are not going to really get a choice in the matter, but I’m willing to somewhat believe that they are good people deep down.  Only we are presented with several flashbacks, which show Rick and Jenna involved in a ménage a trois with Lila.  We find out that Lila is the daughter of their potential new business partner but that she will not be at the party.  Jenna is clearly more nervous and apprehensive about her possible guest appearance than Rick, which has me already wondering what else happened between them.  Clearly the affair or relationship did not end well for someone, but we will have to wait to find out.

4

“You know I’m always watching and listening Jane.”

During the episode, we are also introduced to Jane, played by Amanda Warren.  Jane’s mother is in the hospital and she begs her daughter not to work on Purge Night.  Jane reassures her mother that where she is working is very safe and it seems like she has the respect and approval of most of her employees.  After a briefing about the importance of their business on this particular night from their boss, David, played by William Baldwin, he reminds Jane that he is always watching.  Later in the episode, Jane leaves the only secure floor of the building to meet a stranger by the doorway.  The stranger explains that they need to wait for the purge to begin and once it does, Jane is handed an envelope.  What’s inside?  We’ll have to wait and see, but it looks like Jane may be looking to purge after all.  Is she looking to take out her boss or is there another potential enemy we have not yet detected?

3

“The fear went away.”

The character I was most interested in was Miguel, played by Gabriel Chavarria.  Miguel is a Marine who has been away and is now on a mission to find his sister after he receives a cryptic letter from her.  Out of all of the characters we have met so far, Miguel seems to be the most genuine.  He has the potential to be our very own Leo from The Purge movies, played by Frank Grillo, but he needs to be a little bit rougher around the edges to achieve that level of bad-ass behavior.  Miguel is completely focused on finding his sister and we learn that they both lost their parents on a previous Purge Night.  Even though Miguel will do anything to find his sister, he does take the time to help out a stranger in need, which sets him up to be our moral compass in the midst of the masked monsters that emerge on Purge Night.

2

“Let the fun begin.”

During the NFFA party, the guests are given one last chance to leave before the Purge begins.  Rick and Jenna nervously glance at each other, but neither of them makes a move to the exit.  All of the guests are handed out masks of previous murderers like the Manson family.  They are told, “Commemorate those who paved the way and purged before it was legal.”  While Rick and Jenna do not want to wear the masks, they also don’t want to stick out too much at the party.  Jenna has already bonded with a maid and it’s clear that she has a good heart, but what will she do now that Lila has made her grand entrance into the party, played by the fabulous Lili Simmons.  Lila is decked out in a gorgeous green sequined gown and has not yet spotted Rick and Jenna.  Something tells me that Jenna’s good girl act is about to change now that she is trapped with a potential enemy.

1

“Step into the invisible.”

During the episode, we learn that Miguel’s sister, Penelope, played by Jessica Garza, is involved in some type of cult.  It’s clear that Penelope must have been broken and in need of help, as Miguel initially looks for her in a rehabilitation center.  While we do not yet know the particulars of what happened to their parents, Penelope seems very impressionable.  Miguel desperately tries to find his sister, as the bus takes off in the middle of purge night.  Everyone is wearing ceremonial garments and they continue to chant about the importance of giving and the invisible.  Miguel finds out that giving means “to be purged upon,” and that the invisible is a form of heaven.  When the first cult member steps off the bus, as purge night begins, he initially seems confident and satisfied with his decision.  However, once he begins to glance at the masked strangers in front of him, dangerously clutching their weapons, the fear begins to take over.  He is brutally beaten to death in front of the bus, as Penelope watches in horror.  Does she now realize the fatal consequences of these actions?  Will Miguel be able to get to her before it’s too late?  Stay tuned!

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

Stay up to date on upcoming premieres of horror TV series12nightsofhorror.com/horror-series-coming-soon

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

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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! 

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.

Want to read more?  You can click the link directly below for a free preview.  Thanks for your support!

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

The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice Cover