CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: IZOMBIE – METHOD HEAD

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MAIN CAST

Rose McIver (Power Rangers RPM)
Malcolm Goodwin (American Gangster)
Robert Buckley (Killer Movie)
David Anders (Alias)
Rahul Kohli (Holby City)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Steven Weber (2 Broke Girls)
Zack Peladeau (The Blackburn Asylum)
Skyler Day  (Sweet/Vicious)
Ryan Lane (Switched at Birth)
Jessica Harmon (Black Xmas)
Leanne Lapp  (Grave Encounters 2)
Bryce Hodgson  (X-Men 2)
Anna Galvin (Warcraft)

Going into an episode about a TV show called Zombie High, it was safe to expect things would get pretty meta and “Method Head” did not disappoint. From Clive calling the idea of a zombie show where the zombie’s the star “dumb” to learning Zombie High, despite being set in Portland, films in Seattle (the Seattle-set iZombie films in Vancouver) for tax breaks, the iZombie team clearly had a ball winking at themselves and their fans. And we can only guess there were plenty of private in-jokes too, such as when Liv said things like, “I love the cute little names the crew have for the actors!”The only thing that felt notably off was the first few minutes, with the Christmas setting and Liv eating the Santa brain. The idea of showing a bit of a passage of time was interesting, as we went into the new year, but it still left that opening feeling disconnected – and even Major finding out that, in theory, he will eventually become a zombie again, was somewhat put to the side for the remainder of the episode (though obviously that’s going to be a continuing issue).However, once the episode really got going, all of the Zombie High material was extremely funny, and I loved that the show sort of got every in-joke they could out of the way, by also bringing up the new Power Rangers movie multiple times, as a nod to Rose McIver’s Ranger past – and Ravi’s line, “If I’m hearing you right, there’s going to be another Power Rangers movie!” was so great. But what was gratifying was the episode didn’t only rest on the meta jokes, and in fact, one of the funniest moments, when Liv had to help an actor who claimed to have a photographic memory remember the term photographic memory, had nothing to do with this being a zombie show doing an episode about a zombie show.5616cde899678The first iZombie of 2016 was a highly entertaining one, as the show managed to have fun with itself in a big way. Meanwhile, Major is going in even deeper with Max Rager, even as we learn he’s being sought as the “Chaos Killer”, adding yet another obstacle to overcome.

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CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: IZOMBIE – CAPE TOWN

CAPE TOWN
MAIN CAST
Rose McIver (Power Rangers RPM)
Malcolm Goodwin (American Gangster)
Robert Buckley (Killer Movie)
David Anders (Alias)
Rahul Kohli (Holby City)
RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST
Eddie Jemison (Bruce Almighty)
Brooke Lyons (2 Broke Girls)
Bryce Hodgson  (X-Men 2)
Jenna Romanin (Bates Motel)
Damn, “Cape Town” tricked us good. We thought we were getting a goofy adventure poking fun at the rise of superheroes in popular culture set against the backdrop of the holidays, but what we got was a much more somber affair. To be fair, we should have seen this coming. Not just because the holidays can be depressing, but because there’s been a darkness creeping over iZombie all season long. It was a quintessential midseason finale. It paid off on some of iZombie’s long-simmering arcs, like Liv and Major’s relationship struggles, while also pressing forward on some others, like Mr. Boss’s involvement in the Seattle crime world. And at the end, the show snuck in a series of well-placed punches to the gut that could potentially unravel everything the show and Liv have been working toward this entire time.
After Liv chowed down on the brain of a man who was a shop teacher by day, vigilante by night, she dressed up in her own crime-fighting costume and said some hilariously dramatic things that Ravi joked would be good to use in her character’s graphic novel.  iZombie had a great time poking fun at the ridiculous idea that people run around in costumes and attempt to fight crime but then go to work at pressed juiceries during the day. It’s humorous in light of how saturated with superheroes popular culture has become over the last decade, but it’s especially funny when viewed through the lens of a show like iZombie that is equally unbelievable in its premise. Liv thought the Fog was crazy for his nighttime activities as a caped crusader, but Liv is a zombie who solves murders through the visions she receives after eating the brains of the deceased victims who pass through the morgue where she works. I mean, vigilante crimefighters who say things like, “I’m the Fog, and tonight I’m thick with justice,” don’t sound nearly as crazy when you put things into perspective.
And this week, iZombie was all about putting things into perspective, whether it was Clive realizing how dangerous it was to allow Liv to consult on cases or Major finally coming to terms with how a brain affects a zombie, things were becoming clearer but also changing, and not necessarily for the better, for our ragtag group of heroes. Like many superhero tales, “Cape Town” ended with Liv standing on a rooftop surveying the city she was trying to protect, and although it was fun while it lasted, the particular brain put Liv in a dangerous position when she went to one of Mr. Boss’s warehouses to stop a gun deal and after overpowering a few men with marbles, chloroform, and her built-in zombie rage, was nearly killed by the murderer, who’d been robbing Mr. Boss’s high stakes poker games. Mr. Boss arrived and shot the woman, and if Liv wasn’t already on his radar from his first appearance on the show, she is now. Liv has done some questionable things as a result of whatever brain she’s eaten that week, but has she ever been quite so needlessly reckless as she was this week? She is not a trained law-enforcement officer, and her zombie strength and instincts can’t protect her all the time. The fact that there were repercussions for her actions is actually something that I think needed to happen in order for iZombie to continue to move forward, even if moving forward actually meant taking a few steps back. One of the worst things that can happen to a show is that it becomes complacent, and although iZombie was in no risk of stalling out—between Max Rager, Mr. Boss, and Blaine’s scheming, the show has plenty of storylines to ensure it has forward momentum—Clive ending their partnership threw Liv for a loop and forced the show to turn inward in a way that we haven’t seen in a while.
Clive blamed himself for Liv’s actions because he’d been treating her like an equal when she wasn’t one, but by putting an end to their partnership, he has unknowingly also taken away the one thing that gave real meaning to Liv’s undead life. And so without her tether, everything kind of spiraled out of control from there. The way Liv sees it, if she’s not using the brains she eats to retrain her humanity to also solve murders, then there are no positives to being a zombie. It means she suffers through visions of someone else’s life for no reason, it means her personality shifts are for nothing, and it means that she no longer serves any purpose. Clive dissolving their weird little partnership essentially threatens to erase all of the progress Liv has made since the series premiere taught Liv that being a zombie didn’t have to mean her life was over. And without helping to solve murder cases, the depression that once dominated Liv’s life is already threatening to creep back in.
The first casualty of being a zombie without a cause was Liv’s love life. It was already in jeopardy, of course, but after having a heart-to-heart with a zombie who was forced to have sex for food, Major thought he had finally begun to understand how the brains affected an individual, and was willing to forgive Liv for her stalker actions last week—an argument that bled over into this week’s episode—but Liv decided to break things off. To his credit, Major was so sure that they’re meant to be together that he’s willing to wait and was certain this latest hiccup in their long, rocky road to happiness will be overcome. On the one hand, good for you, Major. Someone needs to fight for the relationship since Liv isn’t able to. But on the other hand, by viewing Liv’s zombieism as a temporary roadblock, that sent a message to Liv that he loved the woman she used to be and only tolerated the woman she was now.
Like many of the CW mid-season finales, Izombie’s is a game changer and now we have to wait till January to see the aftermath.

REVIEW: THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF THE LIVING CORPSE

CAST (VOICES)

Maria Olsen (Starry Eyes)
Michael Villar (Visions)
Marshal Hilton (Beetleborgs Metallix)
Claudine Claudio  (La La Land)
Ben McCain (My Name Is Bruce)

Tactical-Force-DII realise that going into a movie called; ‘The Amazing Adventures of the Living Corpse’ you shouldn’t be expecting a cinematic masterpiece that changes the norm of cinema by its shear beauty and elegance. That being said however, you do expect a movie with a zombie doing some awesome stuff and possibly some over the top gore splashed in with a bit of dark comedy/tragic character development or angst. I had seen no teasers and I haven’t studied the source material so I was going in blind and without reference.91YkGHks5VL__SL1500_My expectations for the film dropped rather dramatically after seeing the character models  and I immediately thought; Kids film. That ain’t a good thing for the subject material. The animation does not work on human faces but it doesn’t look terrible with non humans and I assume it is meant to achieve a stylised look like the comic book it was based upon. You become more used to it as the film goes on but for me it seemed amateurish, some of the cinematography was great though, I was pleasantly surprised with some of the camera angles that they pulled out.maxresdefaultThe voice acting was mixed and dialogue varied from pretty damn decent to downright puerile. The son, Taylor was particularly bad, especially in the opening scenes where he delivers his lines like….well cardboard isn’t completely rigid.  A couple of characters were quite annoying, they were the comic relief but the humour isn’t very mature.What gore there is in this film is sparse and rare. Most of the time, something gets punched and falls down and dies without much blood or fuss. The combat scenes can become quite stylised at points and can be enjoyable for the most part but they weren’t anything that I could sink my teeth into or will particularly stand out in memory.5051892123525_lI suppose the reason I disliked the film is that I liked the concept and there were some nifty ideas floating about; ‘Zombie superhero who wanders in and out of the underworld to fight monsters and find his son’ sounds like good material for ultra violent schlock or a dark and brooding hero/anti-hero story. Unfortunately this is a film that has an ‘R’rating in America but I don’t have a bloody clue why. The comedy seems to be rather childishbut the subject matter and the brief spats of gore make it unsuitable for children. I’m not saying there had to be blood, guts, f-bombs and nudity but the tone and humour is just weird considering the subject matter. The film has its moments and isn’t terrible mind you and will find itself fans but I have to say I found this to be just below average. I’m now trying to find the comic because I think that the transition to film may have been a difficult one and the comic may hold up better.

REVIEW: ALIENS VS PREDATOR: REQUIEM

CAST

Steven Pasquale (The Last Men)
Reiko Aylesworth (24)
John Ortiz (Kong: Skull Island)
Johnny Lewis (Sons of Anarchy)
Sam Trammell(The Fault In Our Stars)
Ariel Gade (Envy)
Robert Joy (The Hills Have Eyes)
Kristen Hager (My Name Is Evil)
David Paetkau (Flashpoint)
Gina Holden (Flash Gordon)
Chelah Horsdal (Arrow)
Chris William Martin (The Vampire Diaries)
Tom McBeath (Stargate SG.1)
Tv Olsson (Izombie)
Rainbow Sun Francks (Stargate: Atlantis)
Françoise Yip (Romeo Must Die)
Ian Whyte (Game of Thrones)
Tom Woodruff Jr. (Severed Road)

Following the events of Alien vs. Predator, a Predator ship leaves Earth carrying Alien facehuggers, and the body of Scar, the Predator that defeated the Alien Queen. A chestburster with traits of both species erupts from Scar’s body. It quickly matures into an adult Predalien, makes its way onto a scout ship that is then detached from the Mothership, and starts killing the Predators. A Predator’s weapon punctures the hull and the scout ship crashes in the forest outside of Gunnison, Colorado, injuring or killing most of the Predators on board.The Predalien and several facehuggers escape, implanting embryos into a nearby father and son as well as several homeless people that live in the sewers. An injured Predator sends a distress signal before being killed by the Predalien. A lone Predator, Wolf, responds, traveling to Earth to kill the Aliens. He uses a blue liquid to erase the evidence of the Aliens’ presence. Meanwhile, ex-convict Dallas Howard has just returned to Gunnison after serving time in prison. He is greeted by Sheriff Eddie Morales and reunites with his younger brother Ricky. Ricky has a romantic interest in his classmate Jesse but is constantly harassed by her boyfriend Dale and two of his friends. Kelly O’Brien has also just returned to Gunnison after serving in the military, and reunites with her husband Tim and daughter Molly. Darcy Benson, the wife of the murdered father, begins her search for her missing husband and son. Meanwhile, local waitress Carrie Adams discovers she is pregnant, but her policeman husband, Ray, is killed by Wolf after witnessing him disposing of the bodies of Darcy’s husband and son.Wolf fights several Aliens in the sewers, and as the battle reaches the surface several of them disperse into the town. Wolf pursues some to the power plant, where collateral damage from its weapons causes a citywide power outage. Ricky and Jesse meet at the high school swimming pool, but are interrupted by Dale and his cohorts just as an Alien enters the building, killing Dale’s friends. Another Alien invades the O’Brien home, killing Tim while Kelly escapes with Molly. After the fry cook at the diner she works at is killed, Carrie is impregnated with bellybusters and killed. Darcy discovers her body in horror but Sheriff Morales arrives and brings her with him. Kelly, Molly, Ricky, Jesse, Dale, Dallas, and Sheriff Morales meet at a sporting goods store to gather weapons. Troops from the Colorado Army National Guard arrive but are quickly killed by the Aliens. When the battle between Wolf and the Aliens enters the store, Dale is killed and Wolf’s shoulder cannons are damaged; he is able to modify one into a hand-held blaster.960As the survivors attempt to escape Gunnison, they make radio contact with Colonel Stevens and are told that an air evacuation is being staged at the center of town. Kelly does not believe him and convinces a small group to go to the hospital where they hope to escape by helicopter, while Sheriff Morales and Darcy head to the evacuation zone. The hospital, however, has been invaded and overrun by the Aliens and the Predalien, who has impregnated some pregnant women to breed more Aliens. Wolf soon arrives and in the ensuing battle, Jesse is killed, Ricky is injured by the Predalien, and Dallas takes possession of Wolf’s blaster cannon after the Predator is attacked by an Alien and both tumble down an elevator shaft. When the battle reaches the rooftop, Dallas, Ricky, Kelly, and Molly escape in the helicopter while Wolf, having survived the fall, battles the Predalien in hand-to-hand combat. Wolf and the Predalien mortally wound each other just as a military jet arrives. Rather than a rescue airlift, it executes a tactical nuclear strike that destroys the entire city. The shock wave causes the fleeing helicopter to crash in a clearing, where the survivors are rescued by the military. Wolf’s blaster cannon is confiscated, and Colonel Stevens presents it to Ms. Yutani. Ms. Yutani tells Colonel Stevens that the world is not yet ready for this kind of advanced technology.avpr-aliens-vs-predator-requiemIn the end its not the epic space opera that many wanted but it is a fun monster romp that exploits the Aliens on Earth storyline and offers the most interesting Predator character since the original.

REVIEW: ALIEN VS PREDATOR

CAST

Sanaa Lathan (Blade)
Lance Henriksen (The Terminator)
Raoul Bova (The Tourist)
Ewen Bremner (Black Hawk Down)
Colin Salmon (Resident Evil)
Tommy Flanagan (Sin City)
Joseph Rye (V For Vendetta)
Agathe de La Boulaye (Highlander: The Raven)
Carsten Norgaard (The Man In The High Castle)
Sam Troughton (Hex)
Ian Whyte (Game of Thrones)
Tom Woodruff Jr. (Severed Road)

In 2004, a satellite detects a mysterious heat bloom beneath Bouvetøya, an island about one thousand miles off the coast of Antarctica. Wealthy industrialist Charles Bishop Weyland (Lance Henriksen) discovers through thermal imaging that there is a pyramid buried 2000 feet beneath the ice. He attempts to claim it for his multinational communications company, Weyland Industries, a subsidiary of the Weyland Corporation, and assembles a team of experts to investigate. The team includes archaeologists, linguistic experts, drillers, mercenaries, and a guide named Alexa Woods (Sanaa Lathan).As a Predator ship reaches Earth’s orbit, it fires a beam that creates a passage through the ice towards the source of the heat bloom. When the team arrives at the abandoned whaling station above the heat source, they find the passage and descend beneath the ice. They locate the mysterious pyramid and begin to explore it, finding evidence of a prehistoric civilization and what appears to be a sacrificial chamber filled with human skeletons with ruptured rib cages.Meanwhile, three Predators consisting of Scar, Celtic and Chopper arrive and kill all the humans on the surface. They make their way down to the pyramid and arrive just as the team unwittingly activates the structure. The Alien Queen awakes from cryogenic stasis and begins to produce eggs. When the eggs hatch, several facehuggers attach themselves to humans trapped in the sacrificial chamber. Chestbursters emerge from the humans and quickly grow into adult Aliens. Conflict erupts between the Predators, Aliens, and humans, resulting in several deaths. Celtic and Chopper are killed by an Alien, and Weyland buys Alexa and Italian archaeologist Sebastian De Rosa (Raoul Bova) enough time to escape from Scar, giving his life in the process. The two witness Scar kill a facehugger and an Alien with a shuriken before unmasking and marking himself with the blood of the facehugger. After Alexa and Sebastian leave, another facehugger attaches itself to Scar due to him not wearing his mask.Through translation of the pyramid’s hieroglyphs, Alexa and Sebastian learn that the Predators have been visiting Earth for thousands of years. It was they who taught early human civilizations how to build pyramids, and were worshiped as gods. Every 100 years they visited Earth to take part in a rite of passage by which several humans sacrifice themselves as hosts for the Aliens, creating the “ultimate prey” for the Predators to hunt while being able to survive in the pyramid without being killed; if overwhelmed, the Predators would activate a self-destruct device to eliminate the Aliens and themselves. The two deduce that this is why the current Predators are at the pyramid, and that the heat bloom was to attract humans for the sole purpose of making new Aliens to hunt.Alexa and Sebastian decide that the Predators must be allowed to succeed in their hunt so that the Aliens “do not reach the surface”. Then Sebastian is captured by an Alien, leaving only Alexa and Scar to fight the Aliens. The two form an alliance and use a self-destruct device to destroy the pyramid and the remaining Aliens. Alexa and Scar reach the surface, where they battle the Alien Queen. They defeat the Queen by attaching its chain to a water tower and pushing her over a cliff, dragging the Queen to the ocean floor. Scar, however, is impaled through the torso by the Alien Queen’s tail and succumbs to his wounds and dies. A Predator ship uncloaks and several Predators appear. They retrieve their fallen comrade and an elite Predator presents Alexa with one of their spear weapons in recognition of her skill as a warrior symbolized by the alien blood Scar burned on her cheek before he died. As the Predators retreat into space, a chestburster with a hybrid form of an Alien and a Predator erupts from Scar’s chest.Alien vs Predator was not overdone, which is the main point to its success to deliver a great movie, that involves crossover characters. It is a well done movie in which fans of both franchise have something to enjoy.

REVIEW: THE TICK (2001)

Space-Squad-Benikiba-Mad-Gallant

 

MAIN CAST

Patrick Warburton (Family Guy)
David Burke (Joan of Arcadia)
Liz Vassey (Two and a Half Men)
Nestor Carbonell (Bates Motel)Space-Squad-Benikiba-Mad-Gallant

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Christopher Lloyd (Piranha)
T.J. Thyne (Bones)
Sam McMurray (Addams Family Values)
Maury Ginsberg (Vinyl)
Ron Perlman (Hellboy)
Missi Pyle (Gone Girl)
Kurt Fuller (Ghostbusters 2)
Lori Alan Family Guy0
Armin Shimerman (Star Trek: DS9)

tik-gerojEdlund first published the adventures of the Tick in a black-and-white comic book that gathered a cult following. Somehow, he got the attention of Fox’s animation studios, and his rather mature story—about an insanely strong, decidedly off-balanced escapee from a mental institution living in a world packed with obscure superheroes and bizarre villains (Chairface Chippendale, the Chainsaw Vigilante, the terrifying District Manager)—into a slightly less offensive, even funnier Saturday morning cartoon. The animated Tick lasted three seasons, and the adventures of Tick and his sidekick Arthur  and their battles against villains like the Eastern Bloc Robot Cowboy, the Guy with Ears Like Little Raisins, and Joseph Stalin, were all that got me up on weekend mornings. 1457674447338But Fox ruined things by trying to turn the show from a cult hit into a mainstream entertainment and they soon cancelled it. Then, five years later, a brief bout of insanity overtook the Fox executives and they commissioned a live-action version of the large, blue, polysyllabic hero. Bringing Tick into the real world without screwing it up would require finesse, and luckily Fox allowed Edlund a ton of creative input. And despite some changes, including the substitution of the comic’s sidekicks with new characters Captain Liberty (Liz Vassey) and Spanish lothario Batmanuel (Nestor Carbonell), the live-action version is surprisingly faithful to both the original incarnation and the cartoon series. A large measure of credit goes to star Patrick Warburton and David Burke, a pitch-perfect pair of Tick and moth. Warburton in particular captures his character’s blend of big-hearted hero and moron.1457674447338Of course, it isn’t perfect. It’s a low-budget series, and you can tell—the Tick’s costume (complete with motorized antenna)—looks great, but the rest of the set dressing looks rather cheap. And these first nine episodes are somewhat hit or miss, only occasionally scoring as consistently as the animated series. On the plus side, the show’s late-night time slot and intended adult audience meant the plots could be a bit more mature and subversive. Standouts include Arthur, Interrupted, in which Arthur comes out of the superhero closet to his family and is thrown into a “deprogramming facility” run by guest star Dave Foley; The Terror, in which the Tick faces the dastardly, 115-year-old villain, The Terror (Armin Shimerman); and the heroic duo’s acceptance into a smarmy, elitist superhero team in The Big Leaguestickep4Unfortunately, after bankrolling the series, Fox apparently decided they had made a series no one would watch, so they shelved it for a year. Then they slotted in on Thursdays against Survivor and Friends, pre-empted it so often it took three months to air eight episodes, showed everything out of order, and ended the show without airing the ninth and final episode (which was supposed to be episode three anyway). Even the clout of executive producer Barry Sonnenfeld couldn’t keep it on the air.tick+1If only more comic fans had committed to a show that actually did everything they’d asked… Fortunately, the American dvd gave fans the chance to relive this short lived show. thankfully the amazon revival has brought the Tick back in a form, but fans of the character should check out first attempt of a live action Tick.

 

 

REVIEW: THE TICK (2017) – SEASON 1 – PART 1

MAIN CAST

Peter Serafinowicz (spy)
Griffin Newman (Draft day0
Valorie Curry (Blair Witch)
Brendan Hines (Lie To Me)
Jackie Earle Haley (Watchmen)
Yara Martinez (Jane The Virgin)

RECURRING NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Christian Navarro (13 Reasons Why)
Whoopi Goldberg (The Muppets)
François Chau (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2)
Bryan Greenberg (Prime)
Alan Tudyk (Firefly)
Scott Speiser (6 Ways To Die)

This new Tick series (following the famous ’90s animated series and the ill-fated first go at live-action on FOX back in 2001) takes a bit of a subtle left turn into soft Rated-R territory, allowing things to feel a little more grounded and grittier while also permitting the occasional F-bomb to fly free. Yes, it’s weird to think that the mostly-jovial world of The Tick could exist alongside actual carnage and bloodshed, plus profanity, but it works really well. As does the show’s parody of a Punisher-style murder hero named Overkill (Scott Speiser).After striking oil with the perfect tone for a Tick live-action series, this show also cunningly crafted its sweet and salty spine by casting Peter Serafinowicz as The Tick and Griffin Newman as Arthur – and then allowing the two of them to explore the actual mental maladies involved with this particular hero dynamic.The first episode introduces us to a very different take on Arthur. A traumatized Arthur who’s almost incapable of functioning as an adult without medication and the supervision of his sister Dot (Valorie Curry). Arthur is on a hero’s journey, obsessed with revealing the truth about a thought-to-be-dead supervillain named The Terror (Jackie Earle Haley), but he lacks the muscle and confidence to follow through. He’s all conspiracy theories and crime boards (and Reddit threads), but no real desire to bring about justice himself. From…wherever The Tick comes from. The second episode deftly toys with the idea of Tick possibly being some sort of mental manifestation of Arthur, like a Tyler Durden. Or even The Maxx, if you’d like to stick to comics and possible avatars of past trauma. Arthur has the intel and the personal vendetta while bullet-proof Tick has the ability to waltz in and lay waste to a villainous lair. Meanwhile, Tick isn’t quite sure of his own origins and keeps speechifying about doing good and answering the call of one’s true fate. It’s a pairing too serendipitous to ignore as both, right when they find each other, need the other.Serafinowicz’s Tick is pitch-perfect. Hallmarks, and expectations, set up by the animated series dictates that Tick be large, barrel chested, baritone, and brave. But important to the story too is the friendship that he and Arthur eventually cultivate. Arthur needs to be annoyed with everything at first, but you need Tick to be soft and supportive enough so that Arthur will eventually see him as a light in all the darkness. Tick, in his own right, needs to be rather unflappable in his pursuit of evil-doers, but he also can’t want to go after the villains without his trusted chum because Tick, aside from being his own particular style of doofy do-gooder, is meant to be therapeutic for poor Arthur. Despite taking place in the ream of super-powered heroes and villains, The Tick is a small series. The meager budget shows at times, but when VFX are used, they’re well-placed and important. The fact that the tone of the show is meant to ground everything and make the heightened feel a bit more real means that things tend to operate like they would in every day life. If you’re, say, a crime lord like Yara Martinez’s Ms. Lint or Michael Cerveris’ Ramses and you only have, maybe, a dozen paid thugs in your employ, you’d basically be without goon support if someone came and thrashed all of them. You don’t have an endless supply.This is a show where, as part of the world’s backstory, the aforementioned Terror actually succeeded in killing off America’s top hero team, the Flag Five. There are realistic consequences mixed in with the superhero silliness and that helps create a foundation with stakes. You understand why Dot is so afraid for Arthur when he embarks on his misadventures with Tick (complete with a impenetrable flying battle suit that imprints itself on Arthur – and yes, resembles a moth for reasons unknown). Their entire family had been ripped apart due to collateral damage from super-powered beings warring up above so you’re fully immersed the life or death aspects of the story. Nothing ever goes so dark that it all becomes Watchmen, but it does start to hit home like a more jagged version of The Incredibles. The Tick is a quick, delightful binge that perfectly captures the spirit of the 90s animated series while shading things a bit darker in order to present a more grounded world for a live-action setting.  Peter Serafinowicz’s Tick is also awesome as daft mysterious hero who appears to help a troubled man cross the finish line on a life’s journey to find justice.