REVIEW: REIGN – SEASON 1-4

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MAIN CAST

Adelaide Kane (Power Rangers RPM)
Megan Follows (Silver Bullet)
Torrance Coombs (The Tudors)
Toby Regbo (One Day)
Jenessa Grant (The Handmaid’s Tale)
Celina Sinden (My Neighbour’s Dog)
Caitlin Stasey (I, Frankenstein)
Anna Popplewell (The Chronicles of Narnia)
Alan Van Sprang (Immortals)
Jonathan Keltz (21 and Over)
Sean Teale (Skins)
Craig Parker (Spartacus)
Rose Williams (Infinite)
Rachel Skarsten (Birds of Prey)
Charlie Carrick (Molly Maxwell)
Ben Geurens (Winners and Losers)
Dan Jeannotte (Good Witch)
Jonathan Goad (Troubled Waters)
Spencer MacPherson (Degrassi: The Next Class)
Will Kemp  (The Scorpion King 4)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Rossif Sutherland (Timeline)
Amy Brenneman (The Leftovers)
Michael Therriault (Heroes Reborn)
Anna Walton (Hellboy 2)
Gil Darnell  (Bones)
Yael Grobglas (Jane The Virgin)
Kathryn Prescott (24: Legacy)
Giacomo Gianniotti (Grey’s Anatomy)
Luke Roberts (300: Rise of An Empire)
Manolo Cardona (Narcos)
Michael Aronov (The Drop)
Ted Atherton (Blue Mountain State)
Daniel Fathers (The Void)
Greg Bryk (Bitten)
Andrew Airlie (Final Destination 2)
Tahmoh Penikett (Dollhouse)
Shauna MacDonald (Saw VI)
Ben Aldridge  (The Railway Man)
Alexandra Ordolis  (Helix)
Katie Boland (Born to The Blue)
Noam Jenkins (Earth: Final Conflict)
Siobhan Williams (Hell on Wheels)
Rob Stewart  (Painkiller Jane)
Jonathan Watton (The Calling)
Pascal Langdale (Sharpe’s PeriL)
Vincent Gale (Van Helsing)
Tom Everett Scott (13 Reasons Why)
Nick Lee (The Fall)
Mark Ghanimé (Helix)
Anastasia Phillips (Nonsense Revolution)
Nola Augustson (Cinderella Man)
Claire Hunter (World Away)
Steve Lund (Bitten)
Sara Garcia  (Damien)
Adam Croasdell (Tarzan and The Lost City)
Andrew Shaver (300)
Ann Pirvu (Remedy)
Nick Slater (Neighbours)
Megan Hutchings (The LA Complex)
Steve Byers (Smallville)
John Ralston (Flash Gordon)
Rebecca Liddiard (Houdini and Doyle)
Shawn Doyle (Don’t Say A Word)

Chronicles the rise to power of Mary Queen of Scots (Kane) when she arrives in France as a 15-year-old, betrothed to Prince Francis, and with her four best friends as ladies-in-waiting. It details the secret history of survival at French Court amidst fierce foes, dark forces, and a world of sexual intrigue.                I stumbled upon Reign because of Adelaide Kane who had portrayed Tenaya on Power Rangers RPM. Once I started watching, I was intrigued. The series focuses on the young Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots and her years at French Court. While many might say that it is only a teen drama, I disagree. It is funny and dramatic, has so many loving characters that you do get quite attached to, and tells stories that intrigue to watch more. You get to know so much about the characters’ back stories and their lives before the show picks up. This makes it easy to feel with the characters and develop a soft spot for the one or other while despising others. How often have a I sat in front of the screen screaming and crying, laughing and in total delight? You get to know the politics and views of the 16th century. You find yourself entangled in a world that still believes in witch-craft and where poison was a common tool. The series is easy to relate to if you are just the tiniest bit interested in history.It is fast paced and has a lot happening (very refreshing when you got annoyed with The Tudors not moving forward but having the same issues for an entire season). The first three seasons cover Mary Stuarts return to French Court, her life as wife and queen as well as her return to her own throne. I was so excited to see how it ends. It made me really sad to hear that season 4 was going to be the last one, because many more stories could be told. But. For everyone who is looking for historic accuracy to the very last point, this show is not what you might like. Many dates, faces and customs have been turned upside down. But for someone who wants to watch an entertaining, exciting and dramatic series with strong characters, amazing settings and costumes as well as some superior acting (especially on Megan Follows’ part), and the best soundtrack I have heard in a long time, this series is a must-see. You will need tissues for the final episode.

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REVIEW: LIE TO ME – SEASON 1-3

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MAIN CAST

Tim Roth (The Incredible Hulk)
Kelli Williams (Army Wives)
Brendan Hines (Terminator: TSCC)
Monica Raymond (Chicago Fire)
Hayley McFarland (The Conjuring)
Mekhi Phifer (Divergent)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Jake Thoams (A.I.)
Tim Guinee (Iron Man)
Nolan Gerard Funk (Arrow)
David Anders (Izombie)
Rance Howard (A Beautiful Mind)
Anthony Ruivivar (Scream: The Series)
Isabella Hoffman (Legends of Tomorrow)
Sasha Roiz (Caprica)
Kristen Ariza (Startup)
Mekenna Melvin (ChucK)
Sean Patrick Thomas (Save The Last Dance)
Deidre Lovejpy (Bones)
Carlos Lacamara (Heroes Reborn)
Megan Follows (Reign)
Christine Adams (Agents of SHIELD)
Ajay Mehta (Anger Management)
Shea Whigham (Agent Carter)
Cheryl White (Major Crimes)
Virginia Williams (Fairly Legal)
Pej Vahdat (Bones)
Jennifer Beals (Flashdance)
Kevin Tighe (Lost)
Currie Graham (Stargate: The Ark of Truth)
D.B. Woodside (Buffy)
Jason Beghe (Californication)
Clea DuVall (The Faculty)
Mageina Tovah (Spider-Man 2 & 3)
Melissa Tang (Mom)
Jonathan Banks (The Lizzie Borden Chronicles)
Erika Christensen (Flightplan)
John Pyper-Ferguson (Caprica)
James Marsters (Buffy)
Gretchen Egolf (Roswell)
Marc Blucas (Red State)
David Kaufman (Superman: TAS)
Karina Logue (Bates Motel)
Sean O’Bryan (The Princess Diaries)
Garret Dillahunt (Terminator: TSCC)
Lennie James (The Walking Dead)
Alicia Coppola (Another World)
Roy Werner (Weeds)
Jason Gedrick (Beauty and The Beast)
April Grace (Lost)
Todd Stashwick (The Originals)
Ricky Jay (Flashforward)
Miguel Ferrer (Robocop)
Felicia Day (Dr. Horrible)
Jason Dohring (Veronica Mars)
Ashley Johsnon (Dollhouse)
Howard Hesseman (That 70s Show)
Mark Harelik (The Big Bang Theory)
Melissa George (Triangle)
Max Greenfield (Veronica Mars)
Bruce Weitz (General Hospital)
Enver Gjokaj (Agent Carter)
Alona Tal (Cult)
Khary Payton (Teen Titans)
Michael Beach (The Abyss)
Yara Shahidi (Ugly Betty)
Alyssa Diaz (The Vampire Diaries)
Kenneth Mitchell (Odyssey 5)
Richard Burgi (Chuck)
Conor O’Farrell (Stir of Echoes)
Catherine Dent (Termiantor: TSCC)
Kenny Johnson (Cold Case)
Erick Avari (Stargate)
Carmen Argenziano (Stargate SG.1)
Natalie Dreyfuss (The Originals)
Tiffany Hines (Bones)
Haley Ramm (X-Men 3)
Monique Gabriela Curnen (The Dark Knight)
Jennifer Marsala (Hart of Dixie)
Shawn Doyle (Reign)
Jamie Hector (Heroes)
Audrey Marie Anderson (Arrow)
Brent Sexton (Birds of Prey)
Katherine LaNasa (The Campaign)
Daniela Bobadilla (Anger Management)
Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica)
Kathleen Gati (Arrow)
Noel Fisher (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Maury Sterling (The A-Team)
Jessica Parker Kennedy (The Secret Circle)
Brandon Jones (Pretty Little Liars)
Jim Beaver (Mike & Molly)
Barry Shabaka Henley (Heroes)
John Diehl (Stargate)
Keith Robinson (Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue)
Michael B. Jordan (Fantastic four)
Frankie Faison (The Silence of The Lambs)
Paula Malcomson (The Hunger Games)
Victoria Pratt (Mutant X)
Adam Godley (Powers)
Dylan Minnette (Goosebumps)
Annabeth Gish (Flashforward)
Alexandra Lydon (Mockingbird)
Ashton Holmes (A History of Violence)

We have all told a lie at one point in our lives. While our the lies we have told may be small, one needs to look no further than his or her local news to see that not all lies are harmless. Sometimes though lies seem like a last resort and getting the truth isn’t as simple as a lie detector. Dr. Cal Lightman (Tim Roth) would be the first to tell you a lie detector is garbage and he illustrates this point in an early episode in the series.  A lie detector establishes a baseline for truthful statements and then measures body factors like pulse rate, skin conductivity and temperature; any changes from the baseline readings indicates a lie. The problem is as Dr. Lightman shows in his trademark sardonic fashion, do something as simple as introduce an attractive woman in the room and the most honest man will instantly be a liar to the machine. His solution? Himself.


Lie to Me throws viewers into the world of human lie detector, Cal Lightman. His lie detecting skills rely on universal facial expressions and how a well-trained individual can detect a liar from reading “micro expressions.” Lightman heads up the private deception detection firm The Lightman Group and throughout the course of Lie to Me’s thirteen freshman episodes, Lightman and his associates Dr. Gillian Foster, Eli Loker, and new protégé Ria Torres will put their finely trained skills to the test as their group is hired from clients ranging from billionaires worried about potential gold diggers to law enforcement in stopping a copycat serial rapist. As absurd as the notion of Lightman being able to read facial expressions to determine whether a person is lying is, prepare to be blown away, as it’s all based on the very real and groundbreaking research of Dr. Paul Ekman.


Dr. Ekman pioneered the study of micro expressions and universal emotion and serves as a creative inspiration for Roth’s character. The creators have kept Ekman in the loop throughout the creative process and Fox allows Ekman to blog about what is factual and what is exaggerated on the show’s website, which earns this new series bonus points for giving viewers something to think about once the episode ends.

Once Roth is able to establish himself in the role of Lightman and we get bits and pieces of his human side (his relationship with Dr. Foster as well as his teenage daughter). Fortunately, the formula of the show does allow for Lightman’s other colleagues to hold their own as there is almost always a secondary case assigned to the pair not working with Lightman on the primary case. This allows for character bonds to be formed, in some cases from scratch as Monica Raymund’s character, Ria Torres, is a new addition to the team and provides some great dramatic tension from time to time as her ability is natural, which often draws the ire and jealousy of her brilliant boss.


Finally, the most unique positive aspect of Lie to Me comes from viewers being able to play along at home. As we learn little explanations of micro expressions from Lightman, in later episodes it’s fun to try and spot character motivations before they are revealed to us by one of the team.

Back for a second longer season, this show is every bit the show that I so enjoyed in the first season and even a little bit more. As with all shows, the first season suffers from a few growing pains. Actors need to settle into their roles, writers need to discover their characters’ true personalities and basically the show needs to settle. Thats why the second season is often a bit better than the first and Lie to me is no exception to that. The show was smoother, the acting more comfortable and the character relationships had chance to really blossom in a believable manner.

In this second season Cal seems to be much more lively, a great deal more fun to watch. HIs mock nervous energy, dry sense of humour and heart of gold is a more likeable. The other key element I liked in this series was the advancement of the relationships. There’s not any major romantic steps forward in this season, but Cal’s relationship with his daughter is a real high point of the show, as are his relationships with Foster and the rest of the gang. Every character seems to enjoy real chemistry with the others and that’s rare in any show, yet alone a procedural drama.

Overall this is another strong season. The show is funny when it needs to be, fast paced and action packed when thats called for, and finally it is interesting enough to more than keep your attention with every episode. Quite frankly, by the end of this season I would normally be hooked for the long hall. Shame then that there’s only one season left to watch

I was aware going in that this was going to be the final season of the show however it quickly becomes apparent that show runners weren’t similarly informed . The series really didn’t have the feel of a final season and indeed the show seemed to be picking up pace as it approached its final episode with new characters getting screen time and relationships moving forward with the usual pace of a procedural show finding its feet.

Because of this not only did the season not feel like a final season, the finale lacked any kind of closure whatsoever. It’s a shame as this show deserved more than just to fizzle out in what felt like a mid-season break rather than a complete end.

All I can say to finish is that once again a good show has been cancelled early while so many bad shows remain, which is a real shame. However, don’t let the poor ending to this show put you off.