HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: THE ORIGINALS – THE HALLOWEEN EPISODES

Image result for THE ORIGINALS TV LOGO

MAIN CAST

Joseph Morgan (Hex)
Daniel Gillies (Young Hercules)
Phoebe Tonkin (Bait)
Charles Michael Davis (Battle Scars)
Leah Pipes (Sorority Row)
Danielle Campbell (Behind Closed Doors)
Yusuf Gatewoood (The Interpreter)
Riley Voelkel (Prom)

GUEST CAST

Sebastian Roche (Odyssey 5)
Chase Coleman (The Americans)
Steven Krueger (Goosebumps)
Nishi Munshi (Jane The Virgin)
Sonja Sohn (Luke Cage)
Daniel Sharman (Immortals)
Colin Woodell (XOXO)
Andrew Lees (Carlotta)
Oliver Ackland (100 Bloody Acres)
Rebecca Breeds (Home and Away)
Tracy Ifeachor (Doctor Who)

Image result for THE ORIGINALS live free and let die

LIVE AND LET DIE

The werewolves who have aligned themselves with Esther and Finn, led by Aiden, crash a party the newly formed vampire community are having in Marcel’s loft. Aiden gives Marcel a final warning telling him that he and his army must leave the city as their old deal no longer applies. Camille is talking to her advisor Vincent, unaware that he is actually Finn Mikaelson. She tells him that New Orleans is a city of death and that the people party to distract them from the inevitability of death. Finn asks her about her relationships with the people in her life who are still living. She tells him that she’s attracted to the wrong kind of guy. She talks about Marcel and how she was just a rebound girl for him and that they’re not compatible. She then talks about Klaus, how nothing ever happened between them but he got under her skin. She says that in spite of Klaus’ dark past, there was good in him. Finn remarks that Camille wanted to save Klaus; Camille states that some people don’t want to be saved.  Elijah storms into the compound in search of Klaus only to find Hayley instead. After arguing over some of the wolves decisions to choose to side with Esther and wage war against the vampire community; Hayley threatens that those wolves are still her people and if Elijah chooses to hurt any of them, Esther would be the least of his problems.
The-Originals-2x04-Mikael
On a busy street Camille finally manages to get a hold of Davina, who has been missing for a few days after choosing to take Mikael to her family cabin in the woods. Davina tells Camille that she’s fine and that she would return soon before hanging up on her. Unaware that Klaus had been behind her listening to the whole conversation, Camille is surprised when he remarks that it was rude for Davina to hang up, She chastises him because she hasn’t seen him in months and just decides to show up. He tells her he needs to find Davina because she has brought Mikael back from the dead and is controlling him. When Camille says that Davina didn’t say where she was, Klaus deduces from listening in on the phone call that Davina is at her family’s cabin in Terrebonne parish. Camille agrees to go with him to try and reason with Davina.
Elsewhere, Esther and Kol are busy trying to find where Davina is hiding. After attempting a locator spell which quickly goes wrong, Esther remarks what a clever girl Davina is having managed to block their spell. Enter Finn, who quickly begins to argue with Kol over each others failures to keep track of Davina and get information out of Camille. Esther silences them both, then voices her suspicions that Davina holds the white oak stake and encourages Kol to find her and get it back.
At the cabin, Mikael is busy purging himself of the werewolf venom he contracted from the fight in Rousseau’s. He asks Davina how much longer must they have to hide like cowards. Davina remarks that both Elijah and Klaus now know that he is alive so they must remain hidden until she is able to break the link between Klaus and her friends. Mikael retaliates that confrontation is inevitable and her fear would prove to be their greatest weakness. Davina reminds Mikael that while she might be weak, she is still in control having spelled the bracelet, that allows her to control Mikael, so that it won’t fall off again. Mikael scoffs at her, reminding her that magic can only fight half of her battle. Davina then asks Mikael to teach her how to be strong.
Live and Let Die was another high watermark for what is officially one of the best shows on television.

A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE

On the latest episode of “The Originals,” Marcel got the opportunity of his life- literally- when he was invited to a highly exclusive gala thrown by the mysterious Strix from the elusive Tristan (Oliver Ackland) himself, in “A Walk on the Wild Side,” with promises that he could make something more of himself and gain more power and knowledge than he ever dreamed possible.  Meanwhile, the Originals struggled to make more sense out of the elusive prophecy that predicted the downfall of their family. To that end, they sought out Lucien (Andrew Lees), in hopes of getting more information from the psychic Alexis (Stephanie Cleough, “Sleepover Nightmare”). However, much to Lucien’s shock, she was nowhere to be found, leading him to fear she’d been kidnapped, so the search was on. After calling in a favor with Freya (Riley Voelkel, “The Newsroom”), they were able to pinpoint her location, which Lucien identified as the headquarters of Tristan and the Strix, so a party-crashing was clearly in order. However, Elijah had no need to do so, as he was likewise invited to the soiree himself, opting to take Hayley along as his date, after he and Klaus filled her in on everything that was going on. It turned out that was only part of the story, though.
ptcsobc
It would seem that the Strix wasn’t Tristan’s secret society at all, but Elijah’s, who had founded it long ago, as a way of bringing together the best and brightest of the vampires he’d turned over the years. Unfortunately, he’d eventually realized that such elite types could be rather insufferable, and, as such, had abandoned the experiment altogether at a certain point, leaving Tristan to pick up the reins. This, of course, meant that the Strix were strictly comprised of Elijah’s sire line. Given that, then, Elijah wondered, why had they extended an invite to Marcel, who was sired by Klaus? He feared that it was to get to him or, at the very least, to Klaus, through Marcel, by promising him the moon and the stars in order to get him to let his guard down just enough to weaken him, as Klaus’ right-hand man, thus leaving Klaus vulnerable in the process. Or perhaps simply to kill him, as Marcel was the biggest threat to Tristan from Klaus’ side beyond Klaus himself. In some ways, it was a little of both, as Marcel discovered the hard way, when, upon his arrival at the gala, he was told that he had two options: either he played a little game, or he wouldn’t be leaving that night at all. The initiation rite, as it were, in order to become a member of the Strix, was to determine who stole his daylight ring at a certain point at the party. Once Marcel did so, then he would have to fight that person to the death to retrieve said ring, or die in the process. Further, if he couldn’t determine who had stolen his ring, he would also die in the process, so there was no choice but to participate once he had opted to go to the party, despite Elijah’s warnings to the contrary.
27
 This last part might have actually been a challenge if the person- or persons, as it were- who took the ring weren’t so obvious. It was clearly Aya (Tracy Ifeachor, “Crossbones”), and since she had made it a point to introduce Marcel to her “mentor” Mohinder (Jaylen Moore, “The Host”), who she noted, had a penchant for not only killing the people he fought, but to bite them as a sort of finishing move, it was likewise obvious that she’d given the ring to him after stealing it from Marcel. So, when the time came to reveal his answer, Marcel had that answer, at least. However, that still left the fight to the death with Mohinder, and the guy was one tough customer, to say the least. Though at times it seemed that Marcel might be doomed, least of all when Mohinder bit him and prepared to finish him off, it turned out that Marcel had a finishing move of his own. Taking Hayley aside at one point, after having determined who the ring thief was, he had her bite him on purpose, knowing that her bite would prove deadly to Mohinder- at least if he didn’t get the proper antidote in time. Of course, the same applied to him as well, but Marcel bet the farm that he’d be able to get Klaus’ help in that matter, which proved ultimately to be true, though Klaus warned him that he would be a keeping a closer eye on Marcel as a result, lest he end up being the friend-turned-foe that the prophecy warned of. However, after informing Mohinder of his impending fate, he also turned to Tristan and informed him that he might join his posh club, but he would not be killing Mohinder to do so. That, he said, would be up to Tristan. However, Tristan had no problem doing just that, as it seemed there was another reason at hand that Mohinder had been chosen for the final fight. Mohinder was apparently plotting against Tristan and the Strix, so it was a two birds, one stone kind of affair. If Marcel lost, then one of Tristan’s biggest competitors on Klaus’ end was out of the way, and if Marcel won, then he would have taken out someone Tristan felt he could no longer trust. So, to that end, Tristan killed Mohinder, returned Marcel his ring, and welcomed him into the fold, as the first member that wasn’t sired by Elijah. All’s well that ends well, it would seem. Or did it?
ej_0
 Unfortunately for the Originals, the other element in the party, Alexis, had a far less happy ending in store for her. After Klaus and Lucien crashed the party and diverted the attention of Tristan and company by acting boorish- not that they needed any reason in that department, mind you, but still- Freya tracked down Alexis on the property, only to discover that Alexis wanted to be there, and had no intention of leaving. Indeed, she placed a choking spell on Freya, nearly killing her, but not before kissing her and telling her that her family would be her undoing. Freya was able to sucker punch Alexis, knocking her out, and thus, removing the spell, and abscond with Alexis back to the Originals’ compound. There, the plan was for several of them to feed on her in order to further determine elements of the prophecy. However, it would seem that someone had poisoned Alexis at some point, and she dies before she can relate much of anything to all concerned, nearly taking them with her. Thankfully, Hayley realized quickly enough of the danger and had everyone back off before Alexis could do them any harm. But who did the deed? Naturally, Tristan claims that Lucien actually did it, in order to keep any further information about his intentions secret, while Lucien maintains it was Tristan. Either way, Alexis won’t be imparting any more prophecies any time soon, but as it turns out, it was actually neither Tristan nor Lucien, anyway. It seems that New Orleans has yet another new visitor, and it’s none other than Aurora (Rebecca Breeds). That was about it, really, but it was a fun episode, nonetheless, with the knock-down, drag-out fight between Marcel and Mohinder an undeniable highlight. I also got a kick out of Klaus and Lucien’s party-crashing antics, especially when Klaus told Tristan he lacked the “flexibility” to be in his little club, because “he could never get his head that far enough up his own ass” to qualify! Lol. Good stuff.
The-Originals-Goes-For-A-Walk-on-the-Wild-Side-in-Episode-4-RECAP
Also, it should be noted that Hayley looked fabulous in her red dress that Elijah picked out for her from sister Rebekah’s private stash, and the gala itself was something, a true feast for the eyes and senses. It was sort of like the “Eyes Wide Shut” party crossed with the kind of shindig Gatsby would throw. Pretty cool stuff, and an enjoyable episode all around. Also very much looking forward to seeing what sort of havoc the psychotic Aurora will wreak, especially once she gets back in touch with old lover Klaus.

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: THE PURGE: THE SERIES – SEASON 1

The Purge (2018)

Starring

Gabriel Chavarria (War For The POTA)
Hannah Emily Anderson (Jigsaw)
Jessica Garza (Six)
Lili Simmons (Westworld)
Amanda Warren (NCIS: New Orleans)
Colin Woodell (The Originals)
Lee Tergesen (Monster)

Recurring / Notable Guest Cast

William Baldwin (Backdraft)
Reed Diamond (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Fiona Dourif (Cult of Chucky)
Paulina Gálvez (The Pianist)
Andrea Frankle (The Reaping)
Jessica Miesel (Office Christmas Party)
Dominic Fumusa (Homeland)
Allison King (Baby Driver)
Dylan Arnold (Naashville)
Christopher Berry (Django Unchained)
AzMarie Livingston (Empire)
Alyshia Ochse (The Other Woman)

Reed Diamond, Andrea Frankle, and Lili Simmons in The Purge (2018)Few 21st Century horror concepts have proven as potent and profitable as the The Purge. Set in a near-future America where all crime (including murder) is legal for one night a year, The Purge uses its high concept hook as a foundation to explore class and race conflict through lean, action-heavy horror films that have proved somewhat prescient about the rise of white nationalism and extremist politics in America. Created by James DeMonaco and backed by the folks at Blumhouse and Universal, The Purge franchise rode a modest $3 million budget to three sequels and and a total of more than $400 million box office worldwide, so it should come as no surprise that the horror hit is making its way to TV with the USA “event series”, simply titled The Purge.Gabriel Chavarria and Jessica Garza in The Purge (2018)Set in a peak period of Purge activity (between this year’s prequel The First Purge and the trilogy-capper Election Year), the series offers an opportunity to delve deep into the mythology that has captivated audiences. And with ten hour-long episodes, it also gives the writers, led by DeMonaco and showrunner Thomas Kelly, the narrative real estate to invest in rich characters and nearly real-time plotting as their ensemble navigates the night.Jessica Garza in The Purge (2018)In the Purge tradition, the series follows a cast of characters across social, political, racial and class divides, from the streets to the highest echelon of elites. In fact, we get a better look than ever at the latter, through the eyes of anti-Purge couple Rick (Colin Woodell) and Jenna (Hannah Anderson), who dress up in their best formal wear and head to the Stanton family mansion for lavish a pro-Purge party. With a baby on the way, the middle class couple is eyeing a financial investment from the Stanton patriarch (Reed Diamond) that wouldn’t just bankroll their housing development, but change their life. They’re also eyeing the Stanton daughter, Lila (Lili Simmons), a stunning anti-Purge socialite who shared a three-way romance with the married pair, and is poised like a ticking time bomb to upend their relationship, business dealings, or both, by the night’s end.Amanda Warren in The Purge (2018)In the realm of the white collar working class, we meet Jane (Amanda Warren), an executive forced to spend the night in her office building working an overnight deal with her team. Secured on a guarded floor where all employees are required to sign a no-Purge waiver, Jane is secretly carrying out a Purge agenda of her own via the assassin she hired to take out her sexist boss (William Baldwin) and agonizing over her decision every step of the way. Warren is a commanding actress, and while the fluorescent-lit corporate drama (and occasional satire) isn’t as viscerally gripping as the other cross-sections of life, her story remains one of the most emotionally engaging.Hannah Emily Anderson and Colin Woodell in The Purge (2018)Another character worth highlighting (though one we’ve barely glimpsed so far) is the vigilante Purger Joe (Lee Tergesen), a blue collar everyman who does his patriotic duty by hunting down murderous Purgers while listening to Purge-centric motivational tapes. He’s a “killer with a code” type and with an actor like Tergesen in the role, promises to be a powerful wild card if the series plays its hand right.Hannah Emily Anderson and Colin Woodell in The Purge (2018)Elsewhere on the streets, we meet Miguel (Gabriel Chavarria), a marine who just returned from a tour of duty in search of his sister Penelope (Jessica Garza), who is ready to give her life for a cult of pro-Purge martyrs led by the chilling and unflappable Good Leader Tavis (Fiona Dourif). While Jenna and Rick mingle with the costumed elite — who wear masks of famous pre-Purge killers a la Ted Bundy and Lizzie Borden in their sheltered celebration of killing — Miguel takes us through the minute-to-minute fight for survival on the streets. Here we see the most action; from run-ins with the requisite masked psychos to more original concepts, including Running Man-style game show called “The Gauntlet,” which Miguel is forced to play after being captured. It’s a cool idea, but a bit underwhelming in practice.Gabriel Chavarria in The Purge (2018)Despite a wealth of interesting characters and concepts, The Purge series lacks cinematic flair and signature style. The pilot episode fares best, directed by Unsolved and American Crime Story helmer Anthony Hemingway, but overall (and despite what appears to be a healthy budget), there’s a distinct made-for-TV quality that feels flat compared to the stylings of the film franchise, especially on the heels of Gerald McMurray‘s vibrant The First Purge. That toothless quality also bleeds into the violence, which is decidedly tamed down for television, and most disappointing of all, into the core of the franchise’s potent political allegory.Jessica Garza in The Purge (2018)The film franchise had more to say with each new installment, culminating in the angry cry that was The First Purge — a film that wore its politics on its sleeve both in content and marketing. By contrast, The Purge series feels like a dispassionate whisper. If it does have something to say, it’s certainly not saying it very loudly. It’s understandable that a series on a basic cable network like USA would want to reach the biggest possible audience, and there’s nothing wrong with preferring character drama over heavy-handed moralizing, but by depoliticizing an existing franchise, they’ve set up a contrast that inherently makes the series feel like it packs a weaker punch.Fiona Dourif in The Purge (2018)Of course, unlike the blunt-force approach of the lean machine movies, which rely heavy on setup and payoff with little in between, The Purge series has the opportunity to slow burn. Perhaps there will be some surprising twists along the way, and signs certainly point to character progression that allows for a lot more grey area between the scrappy heroes and masked madmen of the films. The ideas are strong (Purge cults!), some of the characters are downright fascinating — Joe, in particular promises a unique perspective in the franchise — and I’m eager to see where each story leads, but I have a nagging worry the track may be too plainly laid, even in these first few episodes and that the series ultimately doesn’t strive to be as transgressive as the films.That said, fans of the franchise should find plenty to enjoy in the new series, whether its the tangents of world-building and deepened mythology, the freaky new masks, or the ensemble of rich characters. It might not be quite as scary when that Purge siren blares, but there’s plenty to admire in this thoughtful adaptation.

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: UNFRIENDED: DARK WEB

CAST

Colin Woodell (The Originals)
Betty Gabriel (The Purge: Election Year)
Rebecca Rittenhouse (The Mindy Project)
Andrew Lees (Legends of Tomorrow)
Connor Del Rio (Little Savages)
Stephanie Nogueras (Switched at Birth)
Savira Windyani (Ink & Rain)
Chelsea Alden (13 Reasons why)
Alexa Mansour (Seal Team)
Douglas Tait (Grimm)

Connor Del Rio and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Matias O’Brien is working on a new laptop he has acquired, originally belonging to someone named Norah C. IV. He begins working on Papaya, an app he is making for his deaf girlfriend Amaya: the app listens to the user’s voice and posts their words on the screen. However, Amaya is upset because the app only makes it convenient for her to understand him, but not for him to understand her.Betty Gabriel, Rebecca Rittenhouse, and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Matias keeps getting messages for Norah from someone named Erica. He gets on a Skype video call with his friends – tech wiz Damon, conspiracy theorist and YouTube-personality AJ, DJ Lexx, and couple Serena and Nari – and becomes frustrated with the computer constantly restarting. Serena and Nari reveal that they just got engaged. Serena wishes she told her mom sooner because her mom is on life support due to brain cancer.Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Matias discovers that Erica is actually Norah. As he had taken the laptop from a lost and found bin at a cyber cafe, he prepares to return it. He sees a message for Norah about payment they received for a video. Curious, he converses with this mystery person. The user, Charon68, talks to Matias through a message board called The River. All his friends are watching Matias’s actions through a shared screen, and AJ recognizes this as the dark web. The user mentions a video, as well as trephination. Matias looks up trephination, and they all learn it means drilling a hole in a person’s skull. He stops talking to Charon68, disturbed.Douglas Tait and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Damon realizes that “Norah C.” is just Charon spelled backwards. The group finds hidden videos, most of which are of girls being tortured. Matias looks up the address on one of the videos and sees that a girl went missing from there: it’s Erica Dunne, the person whose account Charon was using. Matias receives a video call from Amaya. However, she is in the shower. Instead, he sees a hooded figure knock out her roommate Kelly; the figure turns out to be Norah C/Charon. He demands the laptop back or he will kill Amaya.Andrew Lees and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Matias notices Nari trying to call the police. He stalls and says it was all a game he’s making since it’s game night. His friends are relieved but upset. Matias tries to convince Amaya to come over. She is still upset, thinking that he’s not making an effort to learn ASL for her. Matias admits that he got scared when the instructor said how difficult dating a deaf person could be, but he truly wants it to work for them. Amaya decides to meet with Matias, with Charon following her.Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)To ensure Charon complies, Matias transfers all the crypto-currency in Charon’s account into his own. Charon angrily chides Matias for this but Matias says he’ll get the money and laptop back on the promise that Amaya is safe and Erica is returned. He then receives messages from The Circle, a group of hackers all using variations of Charon as their handles. They seem to know about Matias taking the money, and Charon reveals his face.Douglas Tait, Chelsea Alden, and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Multiple accounts with the name Charon join the video chat. They post a video of someone pushing Lexx off her building’s roof, where she was taking a call. The Circle reveals they’ve edited videos of AJ to make it sound like he will shoot up a shopping mall and played it for a 911 operator. The cops enter his house and the Circle hacks his computer to play a sound effect of a shotgun being loaded. This results in the cops believing he is armed and shooting him. The Circle then shows camera footage of Nari at the subway and Serena’s mother on life support. They force Serena to choose between the two but she can’t. When the countdown ends, the Circle pulls her mom off life support, pushes Nari in front of a train, and kills Serena in her house.Stephanie Nogueras and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Matias leaves to get Amaya on his bike, leaving the laptop open so Damon can copy its files. Charon I takes control of the laptop and Damon talks to the Circle, saying he’s been recording everything for the police to find. A Charon brings Erica into Matias’s closet. Damon explains that the Circle had planned all along for Matias to find the bait laptop so it looks like he and his friends committed the crimes, so the Circle can further avoid detection from the law. Moments later, a Charon hangs Damon by his closet door. Another Charon writes a fake confession and suicide note, implying everyone killed themselves out of guilt.Andrew Lees, Betty Gabriel, Connor Del Rio, Rebecca Rittenhouse, and Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)Matias gets a call from Amaya asking where he is. He realizes the Circle had hacked his messages to make Amaya go somewhere else. He watches the camera feed helplessly as Amaya gets attacked by a Charon, presumably to torture or kill her for another video. Broken, he asks the Circle why they did all of this, and they repeat a clip of him earlier saying “After all, it is game night”, revealing that this is simply entertainment for them.Colin Woodell in Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)The Circle members launch a poll to decide Matias’s fate, as they vote he laughs, no longer caring about his own safety. Erica wakes up in Matias’s apartment and goes to the computer, begging for help, but the video cuts off. In the street, the poll reaches up to 23257 tallied votes, with less than a quarter voting for him to remain alive, Matias is run over by a Charon in a large van. Their job done and their crimes pinned on Matias and his friends, the members of the Circle appear in front of the cameras and express their joy of completion, as it is revealed that the audience’s point of view was actually from Charon I’s computer.This movie although having a bit of a slow start, get INTENSE and doesn’t let up throughout. Very suspenseful flick my friend and I were turning heads with our jaw dropped throughout. DARK movie and my expectations were shattered in a good way. Highly recommend.