HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: THE CABIN IN THE WOODS

 

 

 

CAST

Kristen Connolly (The Happening)
Chris Hemsworth (Thor)
Anna Hutchison (Spartacus: Ward of The Damned)
Fran Kranz (Dollhouse)
Jessie Williams (Grey’s Anatomy)
Richard Jenkins (Step Brothers)
Bradley Whitford (The West Wing)
Brian White (Beauty and The Beast)
Amy Acker (Angel)
Tim DeZarn (Fight Club)
Tom Lenk (Buffy)
Jodelle Ferland (Silent Hill)
Adrian Holmes (Arrow)
Ellie Harvie (The New Addams Family)
Patrick Sabongui (The Flash)
Sigourney Weaver (Aliens)
Nels Lennarson (Horns)
Rukiya Bernard (Van Helsing)
Peter Kelamis (Stargate Universe)
Chelah Horsdal (You Me Her)
Terry Chen (Jessica Jones)

In a high tech underground facility, senior technicians Sitterson and Hadley discuss plans for a mysterious operation. A similar operation undertaken by their counterparts in Stockholm has just ended in failure. American college students Dana, Holden, Marty, Jules, and Curt are spending their weekend at a seemingly deserted cabin in the forest, a cabin recently acquired by Curt’s cousin. From their underground facility where they possess significant technological control over the area in which the cabin is situated, Sitterson and Hadley manipulate the teenagers by intoxicating them with mind-altering drugs that hinder rational thinking and increase libido. They take bets from coworkers as to what kind of monster will attack the teenagers and discuss the failures of similar rituals in other nationsIn the cabin’s cellar, the group finds many bizarre objects, including the diary of Patience Buckner, a cabin resident abused by her sadistic family. Dana recites incantations from the journal, inadvertently summoning the zombified Buckner family despite Marty’s warnings. By releasing pheromones, Hadley successfully induces Curt and Jules to have sex. Attacked by the marauding Buckner zombies, Jules is decapitated while Curt escapes to alert the group. Marty, a frequent marijuana smoker, discovers concealed surveillance equipment before being dragged off by one of the Buckners. Later, the facility workers learn that the ritual in Japan has also ended in failure, meaning that the American ritual is humanity’s last hope. It becomes apparent that the ritual involves blood sacrifice.Curt, Holden, and Dana attempt to escape in their RV, but Sitterson triggers a tunnel collapse to block them. Curt jumps a ravine on his motorcycle in an attempt to flee and alert the authorities, only to crash into a force shield, killing him. Holden and Dana retreat to the RV to plan their next move, but one of the Buckners, hiding within all along, fatally stabs Holden as they are driving away, resulting in the RV crashing and sinking into a lake. Dana escapes and swims ashore and is beset in turn. As she is attacked, Sitterson, Hadley, and their staff celebrate the successful completion of the ritual, viewing the events from their underground facility. The celebration is interrupted by a phone call pointing out that Marty has survived. His heavy marijuana use has apparently rendered him immune to Sitterson and Hadley’s manipulations.Marty rescues Dana and takes her to a hidden elevator he discovered under a grave. They descend into the underground facility, where a menagerie of monsters are imprisoned. Dana correlates them with the objects in the cabin’s cellar and realizes that those items gave victims the opportunity to choose the agents of their own deaths during the ritual. Cornered by the facility’s security personnel, she and Marty release the monsters, including zombies, goblins, mutants, witches, wraiths, a basilisk, a unicorn, a killer robot, and an evil clown. They wreak havoc and slaughter the staff; Hadley is killed by a merman and Sitterson escapes to the lower level.Dana and Marty flee the carnage (particularly menaced by a giant bat). Dana accidentally mortally wounds Sitterson, who begs her to kill Marty. Fleeing further, they discover an ancient temple and are confronted by the facility’s leader, known only as The Director. She explains that they are participating in an annual ritual sacrifice to appease the Ancient Ones (described as “giant evil gods”). Each facility’s ritual conforms to the rules of that region’s local lore; in America young people are chosen to be sacrificed based on similarity to certain archetypes: the whore (Jules), the athlete (Curt), the scholar (Holden), the fool (Marty), and the virgin (Dana). In order to complete the ritual the whore must die first and the virgin must survive or die last. Since all other facilities have failed, the penalty for not completing the ritual is the extermination of the entire human race. Hence, The Director urges Dana to kill Marty. Dana considers, but she is interrupted by a werewolf attack, while zombie Patience Buckner appears and kills The Director.Deciding that humanity is not worth saving, Dana and Marty share a joint while awaiting their fate. The temple floor collapses and a giant hand emerges, destroying the facility and the cabin itself.The genius of Cabin is the way director/co-writer Drew Goddard and producer/co-writer Joss Whedon have taken this mindset and embraced it. The film sat on the shelf for years when MGM suffered too many financial woes to afford a release, and yet its wit and invention remain as sharp as ever.  In the interest of keeping expectations managed, Cabin doesn’t reinvent the wheel. Its approach to horror is  original. The increasingly realistic and excessively gruesome style that they rode in on is far from universally loved. Cabin spills its fair share of guts, but it’s a good old-fashioned crowd pleaser.Cabin finds a way to access the reservoir of geekiness by engaging it rather than pandering to it.

REVIEW: HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER – SEASON 2

Starring

Josh Radnor (The Hunt)
Jason Segel (Sex Tape)
Cobie Smulders (Avengers: Endgame)
Neil Patrick Harris (Gone Girl)
Alyson Hannigan (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
Bob Saget (Full House)

Alyson Hannigan and George Clinton in How I Met Your Mother (2005)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Lyndsy Fonseca (Kick-Ass)
David Henrie (Paul BLart Mall Cop 2)
Michael Gross (Tremors)
Cristine Rose (Heroes)
Charlene Amoia (American Pie: Reunion)
Joe Manganiello (True Blood)
Joe Nieves (Stuck In The Middle)
Dawn Olivieri (Bright)
Valerie Azlynn (Julia X)
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad)
Jane Seymour (Wedding Crashers)
Morena Baccarin (Gotham)
Tom Lenk (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
Patricia Belcher (Bones)
Todd Stashwick (The Originals)
Kate Micucci (The Big Bang Theory)
Wayne Brady (Colony)
Harry Groener (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
Lucy Hale (Truth or Dare)
Ryan Pinkston (Clipped)
William Schallert (Innerspace)
John Ducey (Sabrina: TTW)
Meredith Scott Lynn (Legally Blonde)
Rachelle Lefevre (Twilight)
Jessica Barth (Ted)
K Callan (Lois & Clark)
Meagen Fay (That’s My Boy)
Marshall Manesh (Will & Grace)
David Burtka (Neil’s Puppet Dreams)
Candice King (The Vampire Diaries)
Scoot McNairy (Batman V Superman)

Josh Radnor and Cobie Smulders in How I Met Your Mother (2005)The second season of How I Met Your Mother continues with a similar tone to the first season. The show follows a couple dramatic storylines that affect the lives of the cast, all the while doing and saying goofy things. Notably, Neil Patrick Harris repeatedly steals the spotlight as the overzealous, egotistical, and downright fun character Barney Stinson.Cristine Rose, Michael Gross, Josh Radnor, and Cobie Smulders in How I Met Your Mother (2005)In the close of the show’s first season, Marshall’s life was turned upside down. Lily was accepted into an art internship. The catch is that it meant spending the summer in San Francisco. Marshall gave Lily an ultimatum, the internship or their relationship. She picked San Francisco. As season two begins, Marshall is approaching relationship rock bottom. Having lost the woman of his dreams, he quickly spirals down a destructive path. While Ted would normally be there for him, he has his own issues to deal with. At the end of season one, Ted realized his feelings for Robin and pursed her (again). In season two, they test out relationship-waters.Alyson Hannigan, Joe Manganiello, and Cobie Smulders in How I Met Your Mother (2005)As the second season continues, Marshall pines over Lily and the Ted-Robin relationship blooms. The contrast between Marshall and Ted makes for a hearty chuckle, as they are as night and day. Life for Marshall is not all bad. One day he wakes up and understands it is time to move on. He becomes himself again (as much as he can without Lily) and even tries to meet women. These outings are fantastic, with Barney continually stealing the show (and the women!). Then boom! Lily returns from San Francisco and tries to adjust to life without Marshall, which includes getting a dumpy apartment and moving in with Barney. Marshall and Lily eventually get back on track and conclude the season with a wedding.Neil Patrick Harris and Alyson Hannigan in How I Met Your Mother (2005)In the early half of the season, Ted and Robin’s relationship is roses and daffodils. They are getting along great… in fact too great. They start to get pretty serious, which includes saying I love you to each other, although Robin has some difficulty expressing it. The two decide to move in together, which Barney wholeheartedly disapproves of. “Moving Day” is a really silly story; Barney goes out of his way to stop Ted from moving into Robin’s place.Neil Patrick Harris, Jane Seymour, and Jason Segel in How I Met Your Mother (2005)In addition to the second season’s relationship story arcs, there are some plain old fun episodes. “Brunch” is a great story. Ted reveals the details leading up to when he learned about his parent’s divorce. It is a hilarious sequence of events, with the entire cast shining. “Aldrin Justice” is silly episode where Barney tries to tame a wild beast. He uses sex to persuade Marshall’s tough law professor (Jane Seymour) into grading easier. “Single Stamina” is a simply ridiculous. Barney’s gay, black brother James (Wayne Brady) comes to visit. The fun part about this episode is Brady’s performance, as he does a fine job mimicking Barney’s outrageous personality, except he targets men.Neil Patrick Harris, Alyson Hannigan, Jane Seymour, Jason Segel, Josh Radnor, and Cobie Smulders in How I Met Your Mother (2005)The season’s remaining episodes offer a fun compilation of fun storylines . It is hilarious and entertaining material. In the end, How I Met Your Mother’s second season is a solid collection of episodes.

REVIEW: AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE – SEASON 3

Katy Mixon in American Housewife (2016)

MAIN CAST

Katy Mixon (Mike & Molly)
Diedrich Bader (Meet The Spartans)
Meg Donnelly (Zombies)
Daniel DiMaggio (Daddy’s Home 2)
Julia Butters (Transparent)
Ali Wong (The Lego Ninjago Movie)
Carly Hughes (Brampton’s Own)

Katy Mixon in American Housewife (2016)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Sara Rue (Mom)
Tom Lenk (Buffy: TVS)
Kelly Ripa (Hope & Faith)
Jason Dolley (Good Luck Charlie)
Logan Pepper (Wolves)
Jerry Lambert (Graves)
Wendie Malick (The Ranch)
Jessica St. Clair (Wanderlust)
Peyton Meyer (Wayne)
Milo Manheim (Z-O-M-B-I-E-S)
Evan O’Toole (Wild)
Nikki Hahn (Adventures In Babysitting)
Leslie Bibb (Popular)
Ravi Patel (Master of None)
Victoria Justice (Victorious)
Barret Swatek (2 Broke Girls)
Carly Craig (Sideswiped)
Gregory Harrison (Picnic)
Patrick Duffy (Dallas)
Jay Mohr (Go)
Katy Perry (The Smurfs)
Jeannette Sousa (Castle)
Thomas Lennon (17 Again)
Eddie Shin (Westworld)
George Hamilton (The Godfather – Part III)
Robert Belushi (How I Met Your Mother)
Reylynn Caster (The Matchbreaker)
Richard Riehle (Office Space)
Christine Lakin (Hollywood Darlings)

American Housewife (2016)Well the third season finale just aired and I must say that the stories have been jus tas fun as the previous season, ending on a musical is real highlight. This seasons highlights were…Diedrich Bader and Katy Mixon in American Housewife (2016)

Mom Guilt

Following the success of the spring gala, Katie goes back to work as a party planner, only to learn that her first client is Nancy Granville. Katie reluctantly leaves Greg to deal with Anna-Kat’s increasing OCD behavior, blaming it on her absence from the home. She also promises to pay for Oliver to go see his new favorite motivational speaker if he will help “parent” his little sister Taylor.

American Housewife (2016)

Cheaters Sometimes Win

Katie’s mother Kathryn arrives and immediately causes a stir when she tells Taylor it’s okay to not attend college, and instead become a flight attendant like herself. Oliver gets suspended for turning in a store-bought bird feeder for wood shop class, which he fears will now ruin his chances of getting into Harvard. Katie worries that both Oliver and Anna-Kat may have learned from her that it’s okay to cheat sometimes.

American Housewife (2016)

Enemies: An Otto Story

The rivalry between Katie and Chloe Brown Mueller comes to a head when Anna-Kat and Chloe’s daughter are running for the same student council position. Oliver wants to continue his ballet at an exclusive prep school, but Katie and Greg are strongly against it. Meanwhile, Greg suspects that Taylor’s new musical theater partner, Pierce, is trying to come between her and Trip.

Brielle Barbusca, Nikki Hahn, Daniel DiMaggio, and Logan Pepper in American Housewife (2016)

Trust Me

After Taylor lies about adult supervision at a Halloween party she wants to attend, Katie wants to make her stay home but Greg says they should trust her and see where it goes. Oliver and Cooper attend a party with Gina and Gina’s cousin, and both are a little apprehensive when the girls promise a make-out session in a closet. This happens to be a party Katie has planned, and the boys are let off the hook when pregnant Viv arrives and Katie is forced to deliver her baby in front of several horrified teens. At home, Anna-Kat thinks she is too grown up for Halloween, but later regrets her decision while handing out candy.

American Housewife (2016)

Body Image

Now that the formerly fattest housewife in Westport has had gastric bypass surgery, Chloe Brown Mueller can’t wait to flaunt the woman in front of Katie. Convinced that Chloe has had work done, Katie enlists Doris and Angela to help her dig up an unflattering photo of Chloe from a high school yearbook. At the same time, Katie worries about her children becoming too body conscious. Taylor tries to do something about the thin lips she inherited from Grandma Kathryn, Oliver becomes obsessed with developing well-defined calves like the new guy in his ballet class, and Anna-Kat is curious about her teacher’s new boob job.

Katy Mixon and Carly Craig in American Housewife (2016)

Trophy Wife

When Katie learns that a hot young trophy wife has a stepdaughter in Anna-Kat’s class, she convinces the woman to become a room parent for the sole purpose of annoying and worrying the older judgmental moms in town. This backfires when it causes Anna-Kat’s choice for Friday movie to get nixed by the new room parent. Meanwhile, Greg enlists the help of Oliver and Taylor to get Grandma Kathryn to talk about something other than herself, but it proves to be difficult.

Milo Manheim and Meg Donnelly in American Housewife (2016)

Saving Christmas

Katie’s father Marty (Patrick Duffy) arrives unexpectedly for the holidays, not knowing that his ex-wife Kathryn is living there. Despite Katie’s attempts to keep the two apart, they end up in bed together. Meanwhile, Anna-Kat tries to help Trip win back Taylor, and Oliver has a humbling experience during his ballet troupe’s holiday performance.

Diedrich Bader and Cheyenne Jackson in American Housewife (2016)

Disconnected

While Katy goes boot shopping with Taylor to try and reconnect with her, Greg agrees to take Oliver to see motivational speaker Johnny Diamond in hopes of bonding better with his son. This leaves Anna-Kat feeling like her status as the favorite child is in jeopardy.

American Housewife (2016)

Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems

Greg and Katie decide to get frivolous with Katie’s bonus check and go to a fancy Westport hotel, which leaves Taylor in charge of the house. Trying to prove he can be a “bad boy”, Oliver takes his parents’ other car without permission to drive Cooper and himself to a party.

Leslie Bibb and Katy Mixon in American Housewife (2016)

Baby Crazy

Overwhelmed as a single parent, Viv drops off her baby with the Ottos which has Greg thinking he would like another child. When Viv’s ex-husband returns, insisting he’s a changed man, Katy has to convince the exhausted Viv that she is still better off without him. Meanwhile, Taylor schemes to get Oliver’s help in retrieving an expensive earring that the dog ate.

Meg Donnelly in American Housewife (2016)

American Idol

When Taylor expresses her desire not to go to college and to become a professional singer instead, Katy solicits the help of Doris’ kids’ hypercritical music teacher to diminish Taylor’s interest. At home, Oliver and Anna-Kat help Greg create a viral message to promote membership in his historical society. Meanwhile, Katy is hired to plan a party for a Westport businesswomen’s association, only to learn it is all her frienemies pretending to be important.

Katy Mixon, Meg Donnelly, and Julia Butters in American Housewife (2016)

Phone Free Day

With Anna-Kat obsessing over using Taylor’s phone and Taylor constantly complaining about it, Katie proposes to give up her own phone for a day and give Taylor a new phone if she can do the same. But the plan backfires on Katie multiple times. Meanwhile, Oliver overhears two businessmen discussing something that would greatly affect their company stock. Wanting to take advantage of the situation but not able to purchase stock at his age, Oliver seeks advice from a pile of VHS tapes that Spencer left for him.

Katy Mixon in American Housewife (2016)

Field Trippin’

Upon realizing that work has kept her from spending quality time with Anna-Kat, Katie decides to chaperone Anna-Kat’s class field trip, only to find that her daughter doesn’t want her there. Meanwhile, Taylor and Oliver jointly fake being sick so they can play hooky with Trip and Cooper, respectively. But Greg has some fun spoiling their day upon figuring out the lie.Peyton Meyer and Meg Donnelly in American Housewife (2016)

The Dance

As the school dance approaches, Franklin asks Greg for permission to take his daughter. With all their children having dates for the dance, Greg and Katie look forward to a rare romantic night alone. But Franklin surprises everyone by asking Taylor to the dance instead of Anna-Kat, stating Anna-Kat is merely his best friend. Anna-Kat then asks Trip to the dance to make Franklin jealous, and Taylor encourages Trip to accept so they can at least be at the dance together. Meanwhile, Oliver and Brie see a psychic, who tells them a “romantic evening will end in disaster”, making Oliver fearful to attend the dance. In the end, it is Katie and Greg’s romantic evening that is ruined, as they rush to the dance to head off Brie’s mother, who says her daughter is not allowed to date yet and went behind her back.

Diedrich Bader and Meg Donnelly in American Housewife (2016)

A Mom’s Parade

Frustrated by the lack of appreciation for all she does, Katie decides to leave the family to fend for itself.

1600x640-Q90_95591d5e6fad2db38ef760797500a413In a world where weekly television series’ have to compete against streaming platforms like Netflix, it’s easy for shows like American Housewife to get lost in the shuffle. But what is clear to me is that this show has the power to stand up against the competition and you should tune in or at least add it to your watchlist. It’s guaranteed to be one of the funniest half hours of your week.

REVIEW: BONES – SEASON 11

Starring

Emily Deschanel (Boogeyman)
David Boreanaz (Angel)
Michaela Conlin (Yellowstone)
Tamara Taylor (Lost)
T. J. Thyne (Ghost World)
John Boyd (Argo)

David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel, and Sunnie Pelant in Bones (2005)
Recurring / Notable Guest Cast

Patricia Belcher (Jeepers Creepers)
Pej Vahdat (Shameless)
Roger Cross (Continuum)
Dilshad Vadsaria (The Oath)
Kim Raver (24)
Michael Grant Terry (Grimm)
Gil Darnell (Redirected)
Betty White (The Golden Girls)
Brian Klugman (Cloverfield)
Paul Johansson (Van Helsing)
Erin Cahill (Power Rangers Time Force)
Tom Lenk (Buffy: TVS)
Tom Mison (Sleepy Hollow)
Nicole Beharie (Sleepy Hollow)
Sean Patrick Thomas (Ringer)
Malcolm David Kelley (Lost)
Brenda Strong (Supergirl)
Nicholas Gonzalez (The Flash)
Callard Harris (The Originals)
Rachel Melvin (Sleepy Hollow)
Lochlyn Munro (Scary Movie)
Carla Gallo (Superbad)
Ignacio Serricchio (Lost In Space)
Sarah Lafleur (Ugly Betty)
Michael Reilly Burke (The Collector)
Eddie Shin (That 80s Show)
Patrick Cox (2 Broke Girls)
Skyler Vallo (The To Do List)
Sara Rue (American Housewife)
Courtney Henggeler (Mom)
Joel David Moore (Avatar)
Lilli Birdsell (Doom PAtrol)
Cyd Strittmatter (Gone Girl)
Eugene Byrd (Arrow)
Jim Beaver (Breaking Bad)
Laura Spencer (The Big Bang Theory)
Alyssa Diaz (Shark Night)
Michael Gaston (The Leftovers)
Nishi Munshi (The Originals)
Jack McGee (The Fighter)
Lou Ferrigno Jr. (How I Met Your Mother)
Brooke Lyons (2 Broke Girls)
John Shea (Mutant X)
Jim Pirri (Lois & Clark)
Tom Wisdom (300)
Sebastian Roché (Odyssey 5)
Nicole Bilderback (Good Girls)
Gilles Marini (2 Broke Girls)
Tim Guinee (Iron Man)
Eric Millegan (Phobic)
Ryan O’Neal (Love Story)

Kim Raver and John Boyd in Bones (2005)At the end of season 10, Bones (Emily Deschanel) and Booth (David Boreanaz) both decided to quit their jobs at the Jeffersonian and the FBI respectively. Now, six months later, their daughter Christine (Sunnie Pelant) has a little baby brother, and Booth is training new FBI recruits for a living. They seem to be happy in their new situation, and today seems like no other when Booth takes off to work. Meanwhile at the Jeffersonian, Cam (Tamara Taylor), Angela (Michaela Conlin) and Hodgins (T.J. Thyne) are called out to a crime scene, where they find a body in a burnt car. The team fear the worst when they find out that the gun that was found with the victim belongs to Booth. Also the initial examination of the bones makes it appear that he is the victim. Dr. Brennan decides to come to the Jeffersonian herself, as the situation is driving her crazy, and she eventually finds out that the remains aren’t Booth’s, but his brother’s, Jared. The question remains where Booth is, and how his brother ended up dead.David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel in Bones (2005)Eventually, everything turns back to normal by episode three, and Bones and Booth are back at their old jobs, just like they used to be. Murders keep on happening, and Booth and Aubrey (John Boyd) work closely together with the team of the Jeffersonian to bring the killers to justice. While the season focuses foremost on the cases themselves, there are some developments in the personal lives of the characters as well.David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel, and Betty White in Bones (2005)Each episode has a good flow to it, where many suspects are considered along the way, and the outcome is often unpredictable. The format remains the same as in the previous seasons, namely a focus on the cases, where reexamining the bones over and over will eventually prove to be vital in finding the murderer.David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel in Bones (2005)While the flow of the individual cases is quite enjoyable, the personal story of the characters gets to the background quite a lot. Every now and then you will find out more about Cam’s love life, Angela and Hodgins’ marriage or Aubrey’s new crush, but nothing major steps out until halfway the season. There have been no major changes to the cast since last season, and it’s safe to say that the current team of actors all did well.David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel, and Jay Thomas in Bones (2005)Bones has been one of my all time favourite series and season 11 is no exception! with a great cliffhanger leaving you hanging for Season 12 (the final season) .

REVIEW: TRANSFORMERS (2007)

 

CAST

Shia LaBeouf (Eagle Eye)
Megan Fox (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Tyrese Gibson (2 Fast 2 Furious)
Josh Duhamel (Paradise Lost)
Anthony Anderson (Kangaroo Jack)
Rachael Taylor (Jessica Jones)
John Turturro (Exodus: Gods and Kings)
Jon Voight (Pearl Harbor)
Michael O’Neill (Bates Motel)
Kevin Dunn (Samantha Who?)
Julie White (Lincoln)
Amaury Nolasco (The Rum Diary)
Zack Ward (Bloodrayne 2)
W. Morgan Sheppard (Star Trek)
Bernie Mac (Bad Santa)
Travis Van Winkle (Friday The 13th)
Glenn Morshower (Supergirl)
Peter Cullen (Dungeons & Dragons)
Mark Ryan (Robin of Sherwood)
Darius McCrary (Anger Management)
Robert Foxworth (Beyond The Stars)
Jess Harnell (Little Nicky)
Hugo Weaving (The Matrix)
Reno Wilson (Mike & Molly)
Charlie Adler (Wolverine and The X-Men)
Samantha Smith (Supernatural)
Tom Lenk (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
Odette Annable (Supergirl)
Colton Haynes (Arrow)

Tom Everett (XXX)

Several thousand years ago, the planet Cybertron was consumed by a civil war between the two Transformer factions, the Autobots led by Optimus Prime and the Decepticons led by Megatron. Optimus jettisoned the AllSpark, a mystical artifact that brings life to the planet, into space, but Megatron pursued it. Megatron crashed in the Arctic Circle and froze, and was discovered in 1895 by explorer Archibald Witwicky. Witwicky inadvertently activated Megatron’s navigational system, which etched the AllSpark’s coordinates into his glasses. The glasses end up in the possession of his great-great-grandson Sam Witwicky. In the present, Sam buys his first car, a rusting Chevrolet Camaro, but discovers it has a life of its own.In modern Qatar, Blackout attacks and destroys a United States military base in a failed attempt to hack the military network to find information on Megatron and the AllSpark. A team of Army Rangers led by Captain William Lennox escape across the desert, pursued by Blackout’s drone Scorponok. They fight Scorponok off, aided by aerial reinforcements, and travel home with Scorponok’s stinger, discovering sabot rounds damaged its armor. At the Pentagon, Secretary of Defense John Keller leads the investigation into the attack. Sound analyst Maggie Madsen catches another Decepticon, Frenzy, hacking into the U.S. military network while onboard Air Force One. While the hack is thwarted, Frenzy downloads files on Archibald’s glasses, tracking down Sam with Barricade, disguised as a police car.Sam and his high school crush Mikaela Banes are rescued from Barricade and Frenzy by the Camaro who turns out to be Autobot scout Bumblebee, but he is mute and has to communicate through his car radio. Previously sending a beacon to his fellow Autobots, Bumblebee takes Sam and Mikaela to meet the new arrivals – Optimus, Jazz, Ironhide, and Ratchet. Optimus explains the details of their situation, revealing that if Megatron gained the AllSpark he would transform Earth’s machinery into a new army and exterminate mankind. Sam, Mikaela, and the Autobots travel to Sam’s house to retrieve the glasses, but the teenagers are captured by agents of Sector Seven, a top secret government branch, led by Seymour Simmons. The Autobots stop the agents, but they call for backup, who take Sam, Mikaela, and Bumblebee into custody, while Optimus obtains the glasses, and uses them to locate the Allspark.The respective groups connected to the Transformers are gathered together at Hoover Dam by Sector Seven’s director Tom Banachek, who reveals Megatron, still frozen, and the AllSpark. Frenzy, who smuggled away in Mikaela’s bag, summons the other Decepticons to attack and sabotages Megatron’s cryonic system. Bumblebee is released to protect the AllSpark, shrinking it down to a handheld size so it can be transported to safety. Megatron escapes the dam after thawing out. Frenzy attacks Secretary Keller, Madsen and Agent Simmons in the Dam’s radio room, trying to prevent them from summoning the Air Force, but is decapitated by his own ricocheting shuriken.A lengthy battle occurs in Mission City, with most of the Decepticons being killed, but Megatron murders Jazz. He prevents Sam’s attempted escape with the AllSpark, and begins to fight Optimus. After a long brawl Megatron seems to get the upper hand. Optimus then tells Sam to push the cube into his chest in order to ensure their mutual destruction, but Sam rams it into Megatron’s chest instead, extinguishing his spark. Starscream and Barricade are the only Decepticons to survive the battle and escape.Optimus salvages a shard of the AllSpark from Megatron’s body. The United States government shuts down Sector Seven, disposing of the dead Decepticons in the Laurentian Abyss. Sam and Mikaela then start a relationship while the Autobots secretly hide out on Earth, Optimus sends a transmission into space inviting any surviving Autobots to join them. A brief mid-credits scene shows Starscream escaping into space to rally other Decepticons and summon them to Earth.Granted, these aren’t your granddaddy’s Transformers. Souped up to resemble high-tech living robots while fighting and the latest in automobile trends in car form, Bay and the producers have mucked around considerably with the look of the Autobots and Decepticons, putting the infamous flames on Optimus Prime and turning Megatron into an alien jet. Supporters of the all-holy “G1” have every right to scoff, but “Transformers” has a wonderful way of making these ludicrous alterations fit into the bigger, slicker picture, pressing down hard on the extra-terrestrial angle of our visitors. It’s only a matter of moments before you buy these reinvented incarnations of popular characters and another few seconds before you start to root for their victory and defeat. Running at 140 minutes, Transformers never runs out of juice.

REVIEW: SAMANTHA WHO ? – SEASON 1 & 2

Image result for samantha who ? logo

MAIN CAST

Christina Applegate (The Sweetest Thing)
Jennifer Esposito (Summer of Sam)
Kevin Dunn (Transformers)
Melissa McCarthy (Mike & Molly)
Tim Russ (Star Trek: Voyager)
Barry Watson (Boogeyman)
Jean Smart (Garden State)
Image result for samantha who ?
RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

William Abadie (The Pink Panther)
Nakia Burrise (Power Rangers Turbo)
Jessica St. Clair (Bridesmaids)
Kiele Sanchez (Lost)
Eddie Cibrian (The Cave)
Tom Lenk (Buffy)
Timothy Olyphant (Hitman)
Jerry O’ Connell (Scream Queens)
Rick Hoffman (Hostel)
Cybil Shepherd (Moonlighting)
Anthony Anderson (Transformers)
Rachel Cannon (Two and a Half Men)
Mary-Kate Olsen (Full House)
James Tupper (Revenge)
Billy Zane (Zoolander)
Greg Cipes (Teen Titans)
Florence Henderson (The Brady Bunch)
Nora Dunn (New Girl)
Angie Harmon (Agent Cody Banks)
Teddy Sears (The Flash)

What if you had the chance to start over, to do it all again? For Samantha Newly, this fantasy becomes a reality after a hit and run accident leaves her in an eight day coma. When she awakens in the hospital, she is surrounded by family and friends. The only problem is that she has no idea who they are or who she is. In medical terms, Sam has retrograde amnesia, which allows her to fully function in the world but leaves her with no personal memories. Most people would deem this disorder a curse. But Sam may come to call it a miracle. As she sets out to rediscover herself, Sam is forced to rely on the only people who can help her an eclectic bunch of friends and family. Although now strangers to Sam, it’s not long before she begins to get an idea of who she was before the accident.

Life,as we all know,can be extremely unfair at times.Samantha Who? was cancelled after just 2 seasons.

Samantha Who? is a terrific sitcom.Why was it cancelled then,i hear you cry.As i understand it,the 1st season was well received and got good ratings,all was well,but the 2nd season was for some reason buried in a bad time slot and never recovered.Also,i gather there were cost issues involved due to financial cut backs regarding the making of the programme.A real shame because this is a gem of a show with Christina Applegate outstanding as Samantha,a shallow,obnoxious,yuppie type who awakes from an 8 day coma caused by a car accident and realises that she can’t remember anything due to amnesia.

As she starts trying to put her life back together,she realises,with some horror,just what an awful person she was.Thats where the fun starts,and its to Applegates credit that,although its her characters mission to make amends and change for the better,the programme never gets too treacly or soft,partly due to the naturally mischevious look that Christina Applegate has that suggests Samantha could never be too goody-goody.The support cast is terrific,the lovely Jean Smart is wonderful as Sams amusingly uncaring mother and the fabulous Melissa McCarthy as her old friend Dena.

To sum up,this is a very funny,smartly written,well acted sitcom that should have been up there with the best of them.And,refreshingly,just like the brilliant Gilmore Girls,no laugh track,just provide your own!

REVIEW: THE GUILD – SEASON 1-6

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CAST
Felicia Day (Dollhouse)
Vincent Caso (Humble Pie)
Jeff Lewis (3rd Rock From The Sun)
Amy Okuda (How To Get Away With Murder)
Sandeep Parikh (The Legend of Neil)
Robin Thorsen (Parks and Recreation)
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NOTABLE / RECURRING GUESTS
Fernando Chien (Iron Man 3)
Michelle Boyd (Cheerleader Massacre 2)
Wil Wheaton (The Big Bang Theory)
Teal Sherer (My Grumpy Life)
Mike Rose (Community)
Alexander Yi (KIssing Strangers)
Simon Helberg (The Big Bang Theory)
Hayley Holmes (The Middle)
Lamorne Morris (New Girl)
Brea Grant (Heroes)
Grant Imahara (Sharknado 3)
Brent Spiner (Star Trek: TNG)
Maurissa Tancharoen (Dr. Horrible)
Nathan Fillion (Firefly)
Erin Gray (Buck Rogers)
Richard Hatch (Battlestar Glactica)
Doug Jones (Hellboy)
Claire Grant (Black Snake Moan)
Dichen Lachman (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Tom Lenk (Buffy)
Zachary Levi (Heroes Reborn)
Eliza Dushku (Dollhouse)
Danielle Yuan (Learning Town)
Ted Michaels (June)
Kevin Sorbo (Hercules: TLJ)
Sujata Day (Larry & Lucy)
Corey Craig (Godzilla)
Derek Basco (Alien Raiders)
Alexandra Hoover (Mike & Molly)
J. Teddy Garces (Dragon Age
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Each episode opens with Codex (Felicia Day) recapping the previous events in the story in the form of a video blog. Usually it gives the audience a recap of the previous episode and shares Codex’s feelings on the subject. The video blogs appear to be outside the timeline, as she is usually wearing an outfit (typically her pajamas) different from that in the episode itself, though some blogs take place in time line with other characters or situations interrupting Codex. Each season is divided into 12 episodes (with the exception of season 1, which is divided into 10 episodes).

Season 1 (2007–2008)
Cyd Sherman struggles to limit her time online, where she games as her alter ego Codex, a member of the Knights of Good. After the guild realizes that Zaboo has been offline for 39 hours, he appears on Codex’s door step. Zaboo misunderstood Codex’s in-game chats as flirting, and became a stalker living in the same apartment. On the in-game side, trouble also arises when Bladezz is banned from the game for using a macro (to spam expletives “a few thousand times”) in the trade house. Codex uses this as an excuse to have the guild help her with her Zaboo problem. The guild (sans Bladezz) reluctantly meets up in person—for the first time—at Cheesybeards, a local restaurant, only to find out that Vork had transferred all of their in-game valuables to Bladezz’s account as part of a team building strategy. If they decided to kick out Bladezz, they would lose everything. Things get worse when Bladezz begins to slander the Knights of Good by showing inappropriate videos of the members’ characters, and Codex is no closer to getting Zaboo to go home. Then, Zaboo’s home comes to him in the form of his overbearing mother. Zaboo confesses that his mother controls every aspect of his life besides the Internet, which she is beginning to read about. He saw this as his only escape.
Codex comes up with a plan to bring Bladezz down, using Zaboo’s stalking skills. Zaboo finds out about Bladezz’s modeling career and blackmails him into giving the gold and equipment back to the Guild. The Guild then fights off Zaboo’s mom, and Bladezz redeems himself by landing the final blow. Codex soon realizes that she got Zaboo’s mother’s loot- Zaboo.
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Season 2 (2008–2009)
Zaboo’s mother takes revenge for losing Zaboo by having Codex evicted. Codex and Zaboo move into a new apartment, where Codex meets a new love interest: Wade (Fernando Chien), a stunt man. Codex tries to get Zaboo to move out by telling him that he needs to level up before they can be together. She arranges for him to live with Vork, who will take in-game gold as rent, something Zaboo is really good at: farming. Codex focuses on trying to get Wade interested in her. The Guild finds a valuable in-game orb which Clara and Tink fight over. Just as Vork lets it go up for bid, Clara’s children unplug her computer from the Internet and, upon re-connecting, Clara finds out Tink wins it. Clara vows revenge on Vork for giving it to Tink, and spends an entire weekend betraying Vork by corpse camping him on an alternate account as well as searching for her own orb.
Bladezz believes Tink is romantically interested in him and begins to max out his mother’s credit cards to buy her stuff, when, in fact, Tink is using him to get what she wants. Vork is annoyed with Zaboo’s lack of logic and his antics in trying to ‘man-up’ for Codex. Codex finds out that the stunt-man has a “stupid tall hot girlfriend,” Riley (Michele Boyd). The Game announces that the online play will be shut down for maintenance for four hours, during which Vork plans a strategy lecture for Zaboo and Bladezz, while Codex plans a quiet party with Clara and Tink. Bladezz coerces Vork to abandon the lecture in favor of a poker game (offline), hoping to make up some of what he spent on Tink. Clara advertises Codex’s party and it becomes a crowded kegger.
Among Clara’s random invitees, Wade and Riley come to the party. After finding out that Riley is Wade’s roommate and Wade is single, Tink and Clara try to hook Codex up with him. Zaboo, learning of this, persuades Vork and Bladezz to go to Codex’s party to try to stop it. Vork discovers that Clara has been attacking him, and begins to question his quality of leadership. Bladezz confronts Tink about their relationship; upon learning that he has been used, Bladezz steals Tink’s laptop and deletes her character. Meanwhile, Zaboo walks in on Wade and Codex kissing and challenges Wade to a fight. Wade is a much better fighter, but Zaboo’s seriousness about Codex leads to Wade giving up his interest in her. Codex yells at Zaboo that she doesn’t like him, and he leaves dejected. Then Codex sees a drunken Clara kissing with Wade, and decides to chase after Zaboo to apologize, but is hurt when she sees him making out with Riley.
Season 3 (2009)
Codex was able to recover from the disastrous party by the announcement of the new expansion pack for the game, Spires of Dragonor. The Knights of Good are first in line at GameStop until a rival guild, the Axis of Anarchy, cuts in front of them. After the Axis tricks a GameStop worker into sending the Knights to the back of line, Vork, still not over the events of the party, resigns as Guild Leader. Codex is elected as his successor, causing Tink to leave the Knights and join the Axis.
While Vork goes on a self-discovery journey, Clara’s husband George demands that she spend more time with the family after discovering her gaming has severely distanced her from him. As a result, Clara proposes that he take Tink’s place, after auditions for a sixth member fail. Riley, who becomes increasingly domineering to Zaboo, offers to join, but Codex chooses Clara’s husband instead, adding “Mr. Wiggly” to the Guild. Meanwhile, Bladezz begins to be targeted by Tink and the Axis of Anarchy, who expose his modeling alias to his school and plant weapons in his locker; later, Bruiser (J. Teddy Garcia), a member of the Anarchists, seduces his mom. Codex issues a message on the game’s public forum to stand up against the Axis for the behavior, and in retaliation the Axis puts a bounty on the Guild. Mr. Wiggly unknowingly gives away information about the Guild to other gamers in exchange for loot, which leads to his expulsion from the Guild. With this he tells Clara to quit the game, and she does to save her marriage. To end the Axis’s harassment of Bladezz, Codex and Zaboo track down the Anarchist Valkyrie at his job, where is he playing the game on company time. After they take away some of his character’s possessions and threaten to expose him, Valkyrie tells them where and when the next Axis of Anarchy meeting will take place. Vork returns after regaining his confidence to lead and, with Codex, reassembles the Guild to challenge the Axis at the Internet café where they planned to have a group raid. The battle begins, but both sides lose members quickly. Some of the Knights die in-game when their real life problems manifest: Clara’s husband shows up, angry that she is playing the game; Riley destroys Zaboo’s computer for not meeting her demands. Clara tells her husband that they are going to have another child and he forgets about their argument, and redeems himself in the eyes of the guild by helping Clara kill the Anarchist Kwan in game. Zaboo breaks up with Riley, who then proceeds to make out with Venom.
Finally, only Codex is left to face off Tink and Axis leader Fawkes (Wil Wheaton). After Codex makes Bladezz apologize to Tink, Tink decides that the Axis members are even bigger jerks than she can stand and lets Codex kill her in-game. Codex, in a hallucinatory conversation with her game character, musters the courage to defeat Fawkes. The Knights welcome Tink back into the guild, and Bladezz makes tentative peace with the Axis member who seduced his mother. Fawkes invites Codex for drinks; she initially refuses but, in a twist ending, wakes up in bed with him the next morning.
Season 4 (2010)
An unexpected and unintentional one-night stand with Fawkes (Wil Wheaton) causes Codex to stress over what the guild thinks of her and persuades him to cover for her in a pretend relationship. But after spending more time together, Codex realizes he is a “total tool-bag” and reevaluates her criteria for relationships with men. Her computer breaks and she is forced to get a job at Cheesybeards to pay for repairs but has no idea how to fulfill the expectations of her boss, Ollie (Frank Ashmore). Zaboo tries to be a good friend to Codex during her fake relationship with Fawkes instead of trying to win her love. He dives into this new pursuit with his usual smothering intensity. When the truth of the relationship is revealed he realizes that his feelings for Codex have changed and he wants to be her friend. An earnings competition for a new guild hall sparks a real life business for Tink and Clara that strengthens and strains their friendship.
Vork enlists Zaboo’s mother, Avinashi (Viji Nathan), for her “brilliant economic mind” in his pursuit of his vision for the guild’s hall and he sets up a stock market and loan company that is bankrupting players. However, her smothering tendencies enrage him to the point that he “make[s] a giant gesture that’s really inappropriate” and proposes marriage in an attempt to repulse her. To his horror she accepts. Codex and Bladezz film an online Cheesybeards commercial but the result is so horrible that it spawns a series of prank calls to the establishment. Ollie is furious and fires Codex. The guild helps Codex get her job back by organizing a celebration at Cheesybeards that attracts a large population of gamers. Bladezz attempts to perform a magic trick involving fire, which ends up torching the restaurant (costing Codex and Bladezz their jobs). Zaboo begs Codex to intercede in the upcoming nuptials between his mother and Vork. And when Zaboo reveals he has used the money from auctioning a romantic painting of Codex and Fawkes he had commissioned to buy her a new computer she is touched by the gesture and resolves to break up the wedding.
Avinashi and Vork are about to speak their vows to each other, at a virtual wedding ceremony in the newly purchased prison-like Knights of Good guild hall, when all of the guild members object. Codex manages to convince Zaboo’s mother that it is wrong to marry “someone [she] can’t stand in order to be close to someone who doesn’t want to be near [her]”. Zaboo helps by suggesting that she visit every few weeks when she gets lonely, causing Codex to realize that he possesses all the qualities on her new litmus test, and consider a relationship with him. The season wraps up with an official gamemaster crashing the ceremony to put an end to Vork’s “Trogothian Stock Market” scheme. Codex convinces the GM, Kevinator (Simon Helberg), to change the design of the guild hall to the “bitchin’ fairy palace” that Tink and Clara wanted. Kevinator is impressed to meet Bladezz, who has become an internet celebrity, and invites the whole guild to a gaming convention.
Season 5 (2011)
The Knights of Good travel to MegaGameORama-Con, a three-day gaming convention. Bladezz believes that he is invited by Kevinator as a special guest, but his name is not on the invite list. With all nearby hotels booked, Rachel, a member of the convention staff, manages to secure a room for them. However, it is not offered for free, and Bladezz convinces the rest of the guild that he will clarify the situation to Kevinator. Meanwhile, Codex is more interested in getting close to Zaboo, but he becomes engrossed in attending the events and panels. On the first day of the convention, Bladezz and Vork discover that Kevinator had been fired from The Game before the day of the convention and Bladezz was one of his joke invites. To compensate for hotel fees, both of them start up a photo booth for the Cheeseybeard’s pirate. Tink attempts to sell the T-shirts she and Clara made, but is forced to find a booth to avoid from being caught by the convention staff for selling without a permit. When she and Clara come upon a steampunk-themed booth, Clara is more interested in it than selling the shirts. Zaboo is denied entry to a panel because the seats are full, causing him to form a seat-saving network.
Codex tries out the new demo at The Game’s booth, but unknowingly insults the creator, Floyd Petrovski (Ted Michaels). She becomes even more preoccupied when Zaboo spurns her advances, and is continuously stalked by a convention-goer in a furry costume. When she follows Floyd to apologize, she discovers that he plans to sell The Game into a mainstream market. Codex becomes concerned about the future of the game, which is the only thing in her life holding her friendships together. Tink, who continuously changes costumes to hide her identity, reveals to Codex at a party that she is hiding from her adoptive family, who have attended the convention, fearing that they will discover her switching majors from pre-med to fashion design. Codex arranges a dinner with her family to reconcile against Tink’s will. Meanwhile, Clara tries to join the steampunk group and is trained as their fourth member to help them win the costume contest, but the members of the group ultimately turn her away. Zaboo has become so preoccupied with his seat-saving network that he briefly goes power-hungry. He is stopped by Clara, who brings back his old personality, ending his involvement with the seat-saving network.
Bladezz and Vork’s booth becomes successful, but Vork rejects all of the celebrities who want to spend time with Bladezz. His attention, however, is turned towards Madeline (Erin Gray), an actress who played his favorite character, Charity, on the show Time Rings. The two are invited to a party that night, but Bladezz realizes that all the celebrities lead normal lives, finding them boring. Still, he rejects Rachel and her friends for the celebrities and openly humiliates them. Vork, on the other hand, ends up repulsing Madeline. The next day, Bladezz has lost all support from the celebrities and his fans, so he is unable to continue the Cheeseybeard pirate’s photo booth. Zaboo helps Clara build a steampunk-themed blimp to help her win the costume contest. Codex and Tink discover that Codex’s stalker is Fawkes, who wants to join their guild after the Axis of Anarchy broke up, but Codex rejects him. The girls later eavesdrop on Floyd’s conversation and discover he plans on revealing his decision at the costume contest that night. Both of them convince the rest of the Guild to help them save The Game from going “freemium”. The Guild is able to stop the changes with much success: Clara wins the costume contest, Bladezz is able to win back his fans, and Vork reconciles with Madeline. As all of them leave the convention the next morning, Floyd has decided to give Codex a job.
Season 6 (2012–2013)
Codex begins her new job working for Floyd Petrovski at the headquarters for “The Game”, only to discover that he’s a thoughtless tyrant who immediately turns all the other employees against her. Meanwhile, Tink discovers that the men she manipulated for services and gifts have all slandered her on local websites, losing all of her connections. Bladezz gets kicked out of his house by Bruiser and spends time at Clara’s, convincing her long-suffering husband that she is devoted to her children by uploading videos of her parenting to the Internet, though he is more interested in monetizing the videos. Vork, who is dating Madeline, becomes disillusioned when Zaboo uncovers photos of her protesting nude, while Zaboo suffers separation anxiety from the members of the Guild going offline, seeking refuge from a collage of his ideal “sweetheart.” Codex is pressured by her co-workers to convince Floyd to release the underwater expansion pack they have been planning for months, but is forced to do menial chores in order to appease him. When the Guild visits her workplace, Tink steals Codex’s key to the testing server and initiates a casual relationship with Donovan (Corey Craig), where they agree that he will do chores for her if she spends time with him. Unbeknownst to her, she begins to fall in love with him for real. Zaboo, who enters the server posing as an IT technician, becomes smitten with Sabina (Justine Ezarik), an NPC of The Game and the spitting image of his ideal girl.
Vork, who has gotten through with an argument with Madeline about his personal goals, confronts Floyd about his unanswered complaints about The Game. This gets his character permanently banned, and he retaliates by protesting and gaining support from other gamers. Meanwhile, Bladezz is forced to spend time with Wiggly while Clara continues making videos. When Clara becomes Internet-famous, other parents turn to her for advice, one of them being Bladezz’s mother. Clara encourages her to keep dating Bruiser, causing Bladezz to convince Wiggly to quit his job. The underwater expansion patch notes are leaked onto the Internet and wildly rouses the protest. Codex is unsuccessful in finding the culprit, but convinces Floyd to release the expansion pack anyway. Donovan reveals to Tink that he was the one who caused the leak in order to push Floyd to release the expansion pack, and Tink tells him that Codex and Vork are in the same guild. He uses this information against Floyd to blame the leak on Codex and gets her fired. Vork’s protest culminates in a riot, but his acts have renewed Madeline’s faith in him and the two reconcile.
As her final act for Floyd, Codex quells the rioters by questioning their acts and informing that their poor attitudes contributed to the problems at the Game HQ. Floyd unexpectedly steps out and challenges the crowd to insult him to his face instead of typing online insults, but the entire crowd congratulate him on his work and cite their insecurities as part of their bad behaviors. Inspired, Floyd announces a troll-themed add-on for the Game. By the end of the day, Clara is successful in convincing Bruiser to break up with Bladezz’s mother and secures a position at a vlogging network, Tink and Donovan begin a relationship, and Zaboo discovers his real-life Sabina. Codex, happy with getting her job back and realizing how much her friends are loyal to her, makes a final vlog and tearily shuts down her computer, bringing the season (and the series) to a close.
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The Guild is funny for it’s portrayal of the inter-personal relationships between people who are only used to talking to faceless colleagues. I was particularly impressed with Felicia Day who plays Codex and her depiction of the archetypal addicted gamer, struggling to cope with everyday life. Her reaction to Zaboo, one of her online friends, suddenly turning up on her doorstep is priceless.