Wednesday, 25 November 2015

How To Be As Happy As Your Dog

This is my dog, Cody, king of naps.


Skip the self-help section of the bookstore, folks, the real answer to the true meaning of life is sleeping at my feet as I type this post. The secret to happiness? Think like a dog... 

How To Be As Happy As Your Dog

1. Knock over expensive vases and don't feel guilty.

2. Leap onto any sitting person for attention.

3. Don't count calories.

4. Make a cozy bed out of the laundry left on the floor.

5. Always greet your favourite person with unbridled affection.

6. Bark/growl at people you don't like.

7. Get lots of fresh air.

8. Take naps, preferably in a spot of sunlight.

9. Never skip an opportunity to snack.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Once Upon A Time Season 5 Episode 9 "The Bear King"

Or better title "So That's What Happened to Ruby"

The Bear this about Zelena's baby? Has it grown super fast and is now a kickass warrior ready to be Regina's new best friend? such luck. This episode was all about secondary characters we don't have much investment in, filling in backstory about a magical object that may or may not have a big role in the season finale.

All I can say is the wig department at ABC needs serious budget control.

Time travel back to baby Neal's christening at Granny's and we see Ruby standing off from the crowd, a little forlorn. Mary Margaret asks why the long face, and Ruby spills her guts that being the only werewolf in town is super boring. Also, she's been helping Tiny in the fields growing magic beans to help her realm hop.


Instead of grabbing the bean and holding it aloft to the crowd because, hell, that will really come in handy in the future, she hugs Ruby and basically says, "Yeah, you're a bit of a freak. Smell you later. Good luck, though."

In Camelot, Zelena has now hooked up with Arthur and she joins him on a quest for a magical helmet that will convince his guards to fight Merlin.

Meanwhile, Merida is mourning the loss of her father as she prepares to be crowned Queen of the clans. But before this can happen, the witch arrives and says she has to pay a debt her father owes or a curse will fall over the entire highlands...or something like that.

Apparently, had gotten this magical helmet that forced people to follow him into battle. Upset that her father didn't have genuine charm, Merida decides to go looking for the man who killed her father in battle and took the helmet.

We also learn that right before that epic battle, the king hired Mulan to teach Merida how to fight...or fight better, okay, actually he hired Mulan to make sure Merida was too busy to go to the battle.


Anyway, Merida decides to return to the battle field for clues to the identity of her father's killer...years after the battle. She runs into Mulan who is no longer a proud warrior but a bounty hunter of sorts. Seems she had her heart broken...yada, yada yada.

Mulan decides to help Merida only because that crazy hair reminds her of Happy Meals from McDonald's and who doesn't need a happy meal once in awhile?

Miraculously they find one of Merida's arrows in the battlefield with a bit of cloth, snagged while trying to defend her father.

Thinking the witch can do a locator spell for them on the cloth, they arrive at the hut only to be attacked by her pet wolf. But Mulan isn't afraid. She pours the cauldron of magic potion over the wolf and ta-da! It's Ruby!

This is a fortunate stroke of luck because with the cloth from the arrow, Ruby is able to sniff out Merida's dad's killer, then they can get the helmet, return it to the witch and prevent the curse from ruining her coronation.

So the Merida/Mulan/Ruby trio eventually find Zelena and Arthur.

Through flashbacks, we learn that Merida's dad didn't wear the helmet into battle, he threw it into the lake before the war even started.

Even though the helmet was obtained from the lake by Merida she still wanted revenge on Arthur, but guess what, she didn't.

And it turns out the whole helmet quest the witch sent her on in the first place was a test to make sure she could lead. And she can lead!

So lesson learned, kids.

The best part of this episode was when Mulan and Ruby decided to skip out on Merida's crowning party and do some werewolf hunting together. I sure hope those two show up in Storybrooke one day.

Who was the MVP of this episode?

#1. Merida's wig
#2. Mulan's smirk
#3. The helmet

Once Upon A Time Season 5 Episode 8 "The Birth"

Or better title "A View of the Sea"

In this back to back episode special, the first half consisted of the main characters explaining all the tedious loops holes while the second half brought tertiary characters that hold no real interest together to fill in the last forty-five minutes. But I have to say, I'm loving all AFF ) awesome female friendships).

The Birth began with everyone hunting down Arthur for burning the magic mushroom thingy that allowed them to talk to Merlin. He and Marion were chillin' in his tent enjoying a chianti and using a ping pong table as furniture.

No wonder he's missing Camelot.

He escapes out the back and Hook chases him down. Arthur soon overpowers Hook and is about to finish him off when Emma poofs into the scene with Excalibur.

After Emma saved him, Hook brushes the pine needles off his black leather chaps and starts screaming at her. Like, really screaming. If you love me how can you be the Dark One? And why can't we remember anything about Camelot?

Emma finally uses her low, gruff voice and screams back. "You want to know why I'm the Dark One?! It's all because of you!"

After hearing this revelation from Hook, Regina is all like, "Oh, please, she became the Dark One for me, remember?"

This Hook/Emma relationship seems so forced this season. Anyone else feel Regina and Emma make a better couple than Hook and Emma?

Undaunted by Regina's widsom and kick ass wit, Hook wants answers now! Answers he hasn't gotten since they all woke up in Granny's diner dressed like Renasance Fair extras. So Hook decides to throw himself off a building, trusting the fact Emma will appear to save him.

Bingo! She arrives in her usual plume of smoke and prevents his skull from smashing into Main Street. Instead of thanking her, he gives a long speech about now every ring on his finger represented someone he killed in the past when he was a badass pirate. Then he utters this gem, "I won't judge you the way I did several times before. I will love you no matter what you've done (now that you've saved my life) because I have done evil things too."

Then Emma says she'll finally tell him why she stole everyone's memories and became The Dark One. Except she says it many times and it lasts for two commercial breaks.

And what is the super secret reason for all this mess? What is the motive that drove her to make such a decision?

Real estate, my friend.

She takes Hook to her house, tells him that it was a house he and Henry secretly picked from them to move into. He's stunned then she shows him the view through the telescope. "You can see the ocearn from here. This is why I became the Dark One, to give us this future together." And then they make out because this makes perfect sense.

Back in Camelot, Emma learns from Merlin that her family is hostage in the forest and if she doesn't make Excalibur whole using Prometheus's spark, Arthur will order Merlin to kill her whole family out in the woods while she watched!

With her family's lives on the line, Emma arrives at the forest to save them and a battle ensues. In the mayhem, Hook uselessly charges Arthur and gets a flesh wound in the neck. Emma quickly heels him and the danger is over.

Meanwhile, in Storybrooke, Zelena's pregnancy goes into overdrive (magicked along by Emma's onion rings from last episode) and she's taken to the hospital while Regina and Robin watch awkwardly. After a healthy baby girl is delivered, Emma shows up. They fear she's there for the baby, instead she kidnaps Zelena.

Grand plan revealed! Emma is going to put all the darkness into Zelena and then kill Zelena.


Hasn't Emma been the only once this season saying that darkness is a metaphor and people are not two-dimensional representations of good and evil, but instead beings capable of making choices based on logic and emotion?

Zelena finds herself locked up in Emma's basement with Hook. They chirp at each other in order to dump a lot of info for the viewer. Zelena, "My wrist band prevents me from using magic. There's no way out of here." Hook, "Remember my hook is enchanted. That should help us out of this jam."

Regina arrives with the Charmings to Emma's house, instead of staying with her true love, Robin and his brand new baby. These two keep finding ways to be together. When will OUAT reveal the real romance of this series.

Anyway, as soon as Hook takes off Zelena's cuff she escapes speedy quick, but then she returns with a dream catcher she happened to trip over in the backyard: a dream catcher full of Hook's memories.


Back in Camelot, after Emma was able to forge the Dagger and Excalibur, that magic somehow undid the magic she used to hell Hook's neck wound.

How? Why? Who knows, no one knows. There's so many loop holes and ass backwards logic in this show, let's not waste time trying to figure that one out.

Ignoring everyone's pleas to just let him die and to keep forging the blade, Emma whisks him off to a flower filled valley and cries that she can't let him go.

Sure you can. You still have Regina.

The only way to save Hook, is to bind him to the sword to make him immortal. He's like, "No, actually just let me die." But Emma said, "I can't lose you too."

Ka-Blamo! Hook gets a cape.

Okay, I actually enjoyed this twist. But why did Emma act all evil if she was actually only keeping Hook alive? And why did the memory curse work on Hook if he's a Dark One?
Hey, too bad they can't just True Love Kiss each other back to okay, but True Love's Kiss never seems to stick with these two...interesting.

But Hook isn't happy to learn he's the Dark One. He decides to take Zelena as his cohort in a plan to...who knows?

Who was the MVP for this episode?

#1. Zelena's baby

#2. Hook's hook

#3. Regina's wit

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Five Things Every Writer Should Know

With NaNoWriMo breathing down our necks  in full swing, I thought a little motivation was in order. Writing is a solitary activity (thank god) and while we love those quiet moments when we're completely submersed with our characters, it also leaves us vulnerable to self-doubt.

So here's a little pick me up for those of you feeling a bit like Eeyore, moody and glum, hunched over the keyboard.

#1. Every first draft is garbage, but keep that crap coming because you can't edit a blank page.

#2. Stop comparing yourself to the writer who just got a movie deal. Television is where the big money can be made—aim for that instead.

#3. If you don't write this story, no one else will. Imagine if other writers gave up.

#4. What you're doing takes tremendous skill, concentration and heart, most will fail, but you will triumph.

#5. You can do this. You've got this. You've come this far, just a little further until you reach the finish.

Congratulations! You made it to the end of this post.

Now go tackle that manuscript like the bad mother fuc*er you are!

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Once Upon A Time Season 5, Episode 6 "The Bow and the Bear"

Or better title "Bare It All"

In Storybrooke, Regina has completed the potion that will allow them to communicate with Merlin. King Arthur arrives with that stupid magic mushroom and asks the others to leave because Merlin is very fussy who he'll respond to.

Regina is suspicious, but David and Mary Margaret are all, "Sure, Art. No problemo. We'll all wait outside. Do your thing, it's not like anyone has double-crossed up before."

Belle has had enough of this tired fungus storyline and leaves to go look for Rumple.

That's the spirit!

Once everyone leaves, King Arthur tosses the mushroom into the fire, then tells them it didn't work.

Mwahahaha! How evil.

In the woods, Mr. Gold is having an awkward session with the chipped cup. When Merida leaves, he smashes the cup and uses its sharp edges to cut through his tied hands.

Emma is unfazed to find that Mr. Gold has escaped. She orders Merida to put an arrow through Belle's heart. This is the only way to force Mr. Gold into becoming a hero apparently. So it's not really a dark thing because she knows Belle won't die and Mr. Gold will finally become a hero.

Plus, when she visits Zalena in jail she gives her onion rings because Emma can empathize what it's like to be pregnant and in jail.I don't think she's fully grasping the whole Dark One philosophy. Zalena eats all the onion rings without sharing.

Concussion Time

Back in Camelot, Belle impresses Merlin with her reading abilities after she gives him a spell to help break Lancelot and Merida out of Arthur's jail. Seeing that Belle has 'magic smarts' Merida knocks her unconscious the first chance they're alone so she can cook up a potion to help her find her kidnapped brothers.

Right, because that's super brave.

When Belle comes to, instead of having a concussion or even being a tad upset at being kidnapped, she's totes into the plan and can't wait to use her magic cookbook.

Who is responsible for these wigs?

After Belle completes the recipe, Merida peeks into the magical caldron or something and sees the rebel clans will kill her brothers by sundown if she doesn't relinquish the crown to them. They don't want a Queen to rule them so instead of killing her and making one of her brothers King, they will kill all of her brothers.

Merida freaks out and lets Belle know she has a magic potion that will change her fate.

In my day we called it gin.


Back in Storybrooke's library, Belle is startled when the steampunk elevator doors open and Mr. Gold is cowering inside. I guess he came in through the mines or something...this town is full of secret passageways.

Anyway, Mr. Gold is shaking and basically incontinent at the thought of going outside. Belle is like, "Dude, suck it up. So your foot is sore from escaping. Big deal. Let's drag your arse back to the shop and magic you some personality."

But Merida shows up, sending arrows everywhere except for the target. Realizing Mr. Gold is hopeless, Belle pulls the rug out from under Merida and gives her a concussion for a change.

Pay back!

Mr. Gold rushes to his safe and grabs a pouch full of transformation power. Belle asks why they need it. He says, "It's time to get the hell out of this hole."

Across town, The Charmings realize King Arthur fooled them. Regina rolls her eyes and suggests they get Henry to try summoning Merlin since he's the next author.

Sure, whatever.

It works, but instead of any useful information, they see Merlin warning them against The Dark One.

That. Was. Useless.

Meanwhile, Mr. Gold speeds to the edge of town. Belle tries to get him to pull over and not be such a coward, but he's like, "People keep knocking you unconscious and someone is trying to kill you. We need to leave. You need to work in a library where people actually read!"

But Belle is adamant she wants to stay. Mr. Gold leaves her on the road and speeds across the town limits. Then Merida shows up. "Aye. Here to kill ya." But instead of using her arrows, she drinks her potion (the real potion this time) and turns into the bear.

Bear or Bare Chests

In another dimension, Merida and Belle hide behind a rock while a rough troop of Chippendale performers prepare to murder her brothers.

Anyway, Merida jumps out and talks about how sorry they will be. She guzzles her potion, but nothing happens. Belle, that sneaky trickster, changed it for water. So instead of changing into a bear, she's still Merida, girl in the bad wig. Belle then whispers harshly about being brave and blah, blah, blah, Merida gets courage and all this time none of the Chippendale dancers think of killing Merida because...?

So, Merida shoots the arrow that deflects the three arrows intended to kill her brothers. The dudes all bow their heads, knowing they've just witnessed some badass archery. The clans give her their support and the brothers rush over for a big hair hug.

Seriously. Those wigs, though.

Hero Time

Merida the bear chases Belle through the forest. Then out of nowhere, Mr. Gold shows up. He throws his pouch at the bear and it turns back into Merida. 

In Emma's basement, Mr. Gold makes a deal with Emma to return Merida’s heart in exchange for his sword-pulling services. Emma agrees. He gives Belle a sweet good-bye speech in case he isn't worthy to pull the sword which makes me all misty eyed.

Thankfully, Mr. Gold is a hero. He hands the sword to Emma but also warns her that because of her greediness she made a huge mistake—she made him into a hero.

She's like, "Pfft, this town is full of heroes."

Mr. Gold smiles and it's like a bit of the old sly dog is in there. He says, "There's on hero like me."

Whoo-hoo! Bring it, Rumple.

Who was this episode's MVP?

#1. The chipped cup

#2. Merida's wig

#3. The fire proof mushroom

Four Ways Glenn Can Totally Escape the Zombie Horde

Believers UNITE!

The walkers were feasting on Nickolas who fell on top of Glenn. I think we can all agree on that. But how will Glenn escape after the feast is over.

Okay, let's start with the most obvious theory...
#1. Glenn can slip under the dumpster.

#2. Even though they're out of bullets, Glenn still has the flare gun. He can wait until after the zombies have gorged themselves then set off a flare, making them shuffle away to the bright light. And voila, back home in Maggie's arms in five minutes.

#3.  What's the fun of being stuck in a NEARLY unescapable death without a surprise rescuer? But who has the skills and the lucky coincidence to be not too far from Alexandria? Bingo! Enid could either be inside the building behind the locked door Glenn couldn't open, or in the woods on the other side of the fence. Just survive somehow. That's right, girl.

#4. It's all a dream. Having a gun fired that close to your head and then falling to the pavement with a dead guy on top of you, Glenn obviously hit his head and it now dreaming. All right, that's a bit far fetched, but it could be possible...

Do you think Glenn can escape? 


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