Posted in TV Shows

Goodbye, 12, You Silly Old Man! Doctor Who Series 10

Yes, I watch Doctor Who. Innumerable posts on Pinterest about Sherlock, Merlin, Doctor Who and Supernatural lead me to it. I binged on it in early 2016 then had to wait for the 10th series for nearly two years. I’ve finally watched it now and here I am, letting it all out.

Twelfth has been our favorite so far in the new series. My nephews and I instantly warmed up to him and his theme.

Look at his dear old wrinkly handsome face! ;(

I thought I loved Matt Smith and his theme but oh, no. I wonder if I’ll feel the same towards 13th, I can’t really say. What I can say at this moment is that I’m not too thrilled with the idea of a female doctor. I’m sure she’ll be excellent but THE doctor, for me, was a stumbling, bumbling and adorable man, begging your feminist pardon if you find yourself offended.

I started with the Christmas Special The Return of Doctor Mysterio so I’m counting that in here as well. That special was brilliant and so much fun!

It was such a happy, cool and funny episode, one to see with the kids. I used to be a fan of Justin Chatwin when I was a leetul kid ehehe and I was rewarded by his adorable role. Also, the gorgeous dude from Merlin, Gwen’s brother was in it too.

This series, though, was less than satisfactory, I’m afraid. There were 3 or 4 episodes which were really, really good but most of them fell short and I felt it keenly. Same with the new companion, Pearl Mackie is gorgeous and amazing but Bill Potts wasn’t remarkable in any way. Martha Jones also accompanied the Doctor for a year but she made comparatively more of an impact. Besides that there was Missy, everything about her storyline was awful and then Nardole. I liked Nardole, probably a lot more than Bill.

Furthermore, each series in the past built up to something huge with perilous with grave consequences for the world if not the universe at large. In this regard too, this series was mellow. The final storyline was AWESOME make no mistake but I felt the danger and threat was a bit contained? There was also no buildup whatsoever, not to the Doctor’s regeneration or to the ‘final’ enemy. There were individual stories in this series, some stretching to two or three episodes but none of them lead to something ‘big’ at the end.

Image result for doctor who spoiler gifs

The Pilot:

Okay, so it was a decent enough opening. The episode had its moments and I was genuinely scared at times (Rule: Good Doctor Who episodes a) scare you shitless b) shatter your heart into a million pieces because they are cruel c) both) In the past, when the companions entered this moment of before and after by entering into the Doctor’s crazy companionship they were all fazed and shocked and all that. Bill took it effortlessly, too effortlessly I thought. I don’t think I minded, it’s just what I noted.

Smile:

This was C-R-E-E-P-Y in a cool way. Love her shirt.

Just look at their faces! It was a potentially dynamic pairing. Potentially.

Thin Ice:

This was another avearge-to-good episode. I enjoyed it but I was put off by Bill’s ‘argument’ with the Doctor. It felt forced as if it had to be done. All companions have been known to rattle the Doctor’s conscience when it seemed like it had gone to sleep (did it ever though?), urging him to save lives and such, but this was entirely out of place.

Bill’s anger didn’t make any sense, the boy that died was already dead and there was nothing the Doctor could do. He’s seen so much and solved so many scenarios like this he knows the best course of action is to focus on identifying the problem and doing something about it rather than moping. She dived into things with him with such ease, it should have been easier for her to understand that he does this all the time and knows best. Eh.

I may be reading too much into it but I did not like that scene and is also part of the main problem for me in this series: the companion wasn’t sketched well enough. She was just filling a place and developing an emotional attachment to her proved rather difficult.

Doctor’s attempts at slang were hilarious.

Knock Knock:

One of my favorites from this season! I loved loved loved the spookiness! The story was great, the Doctor-Bill banter where she pretended that he was her grandfather was great, Doctor chatting it up with her mates was F-U-N-N-Y

and I enjoyed it immensely while being scared shitless. YAYY.

I had turned out the lights at the start but immediately realized what a bad idea that was so on came the lights. LOL.

Oxygen:

Even though this had a lot of action and stuff, my final impression of it is still that it was okay-ish. The best part was the Doctor being blind, being alright and then the cliffhanger at the end that he was pretending to see and was still blind. I was like HOLY SHIT.

AND! Now that I remember it, the storyline about Capitalism and corporations being evil and expending humans in favor of robots is something I frequently read in sci-fi so that was, like, cool and stuff.

Extremis – The Pyramid at the End of the World – The Lie of the Land:

The most tedious and flat storyline in the whole series, if not the past few years worth of series. The Monks were so bland and dull? It was hard to take their threat seriously. Extremis, out of all the three, was a bit more engaging. The only funny thing was the Doctor depending on Nardole as his eyes.

Otherwise it was just the Doctor risking his neck and the humans throwing it all away being thick (typical stuff) while unappealing as shit villains walked in rags and talked about ‘consent’ and ‘love’.

Empress of Mars:

Eurgh. The Ice Warriors were neither impressive nor particularly fearsome, the whole British-soldiers-stranded-on-Mars-having-tea wasn’t amusing in the least and the landscape (in this case, caves below the surface) wasn’t helping matters. The weapons they used that turned people into grotesque turtles, dead ones was perhaps the only thing of note.

The Eaters of Light:

This episode, veritably, left a bad taste in my mouth. It. was. HORRIBLE. Literally, the worst episode of this series. The Doctor wasn’t being his “I’m a hilarious mean genius who will save you all” self, he was a total dick to the warrior girl. And, his whole, ‘let me sacrifice myself to save you all’ routine, pretty much like the Doctor-Companion argument on morality, felt forced and out of place.

Clearly, there were people willing to defend the portal, obviously, they were going to do it and his logic that they were mortal and couldn’t guard it forever didn’t stop them, did it? Nor was he correct if that horrible music coming out from under the Earth after hundreds of years was anything to go by. What was that actually? They just stood there and fought the Eaters forever? Until they dropped dead? Like, what even?

World Enough and Time – The Doctor Falls:

Remember how I said the best Doctor Who episodes are cruel ones? Yup, these last two were cruel. Well, the former rather than the latter but since the latter is a continuation of that I’ll count it too. The plot was clever, it made me gasp, shattered my heart and scared me. This was the BEST story in the whole series.

Plus it had this scene. I hate Missy but she was passably, tolerably amusing. And oh, Bill! Such ruthlessness, much wow. This had Steven Moffat written all over the place even if I hadn’t known he wrote it. The old rascal! The whole time-passing-differently was a major kick in the gut, it always is. The Master, before he tore off his disguise, was adorable. I couldn’t place him even though he seemed familiar. I though he was Mark Gatiss! Lol. And it hurt! Boy, it hurt, even though I never truly warmed up to Bill.

Twice Upon a Time:

Image result for doctor who series 10 the doctor falls gifs

Considering this was the last Peter Capaldi episode ever, I was underwhelmed. Even Argus Filch couldn’t elicit much excitement. I knew he wasn’t young but man, he’s gotten old. It’s always cool to see the Doctor with his past/future selves but this Christmas Special was still rather drab.

Bill and Nardole came back, sort of, ish. I’m not sure I exactly followed what that was all about but in a nutshell, the future the two Doctors went to had this technology that lead dead people’s memories be preserved upon death and those memories could take the shape of the person. So what they were saying was, cheer up, here’s Bill and Nardole, but they are both dead and this is just a bunch of memories walking and talking. Feh.

I was glad to see Clara, though. Oh, I wish she were real and not just the Doctor remembering her! The first face that face saw! I CRI.

Favorite Episodes:

This series was a 6/10 for me and I’m being generous, as usual. My favorite episodes were the World Enough and Time and Knock Knock and I did like the first three as well. The rest was, just, no.

Favorite Scenes:

There are two that I specifically remember even though there were quite a bit that made me laugh or that I liked:

One is in Knock Knock when the Doctor confronts the caretaker of the house and figures out that he is protecting someone. He smiles and asks the caretaker where that someone is. That smile gave me chills. It was such an incredible change of expressions. 12’s face is prematurely lined and more used to being grumpy, in that scene his face went from being curious and worried to an all out smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes. It was a cold smile and that transformation of it struck me. I loved that.

The other one was at the end of The Lie of the Land. The Doctor and Bill are chilling under a monument of the Monks after successfully driving them away and to prove that humans forget rather quickly, he stops a girl passing by.

Doctor: You, appalling hair, this thing that we’re sitting on, what is it?
Appalling Hair: Uh, we thought they were just like, filming something here or something.
Doctor: Thank you, very helpful. Now, go away or something.

What I didn’t like (specifically):

    • So first things first. In the Mysterio Christmas Special there’s a scene where Nardole asks the Knight of Camelot, erm, I mean the handsome bad guy ‘where the little boy’s room is’. The dude becomes nervous and shuts him out but there’s no mention of it again. Seriously? What boy? What was he even talking about? Was he implying something I missed?
    • In the first episode there’s a girl named Heather who has a ‘star in her eye’ and because of that she gets sucked into/possessed by that sentient spaceship oil puddle. Again, what? That ‘star’ in her eye, what was it? Because it didn’t look normal.
    • I intensely disliked the Missy subplot in this series. It was incredibly pointless, the whole thing. First, the weirdness. You couldn’t trust her for a moment and indeed she betrayed the Doctor so many times only to proclaim she was on his side. It ran in circles. And what was with the crying? And that bizarre reaction whenever the doctor touched her? It was so weird. So what, she decided to be good all of a sudden? I didn’t buy it for a second.
      Secondly, this inner conflict of hers served no purpose at all because as I said, she betrayed the Doctor repeatedly, decided to ‘stand with him’ at the last and I mean LAST moment and was killed by her past self. What an incredible waste.
    • Then it was Doctor’s refusal to put Missy down. Lemme just put this right here: She, until very recently, was responsible for killing millions of people and causing a shit ton of trouble through time and space repeatedly. Here’s what you do with murderers: the law requires them to be executed. And that is just when a single person is killed. The Doctor well and clearly knew how remorseless she/he had been her entire life and still he let her live just because he thought she had changed now? Or because she was the last of his kind and his friend? That is fucking bullshit. This isn’t how it’s supposed to go. Remorseful or no, that is a just punishment. Especially when you’ve fucking killed people on a whim. What’s better: punishing one person for his crime and letting this be a lesson to others or letting that person live and thereby encouraging others to do the same because you’re basically telling them they can get away with murder, and also letting that same person do more harm? I can’t even with his shit. People make fun of laws now because they seem ‘inhumane’ to them. Go fuck yourself. You’ll see what the world turns into when murderers are pardoned. Only then, there would be no Doctor to save your ass.
    • Where was I? Yeah, so another thing is Bill. I don’t know anything about her besides the fact that her mother is dead and she likes girls. They made sure to rub the latter in only. Who is that woman she lives with? Where is her father? How old is she? She was just filling the role of a ‘companion’ and it showed. I don’t think we got to really know her.

I don’t know, this entire season seemed a little half-assed to me.

Peter Capaldi was my favorite Doctor and I shall miss the oaf greatly. That’s actually what I’ve said about every Doctor ever since I started watching Doctor Who. So who knows? Maybe 13th will become my favorite too!

The Doctor: “Things end. That’s all. Everything ends. And it’s always sad. But everything begins again too, and that’s always happy. Be happy. I’ll take care of the rest.”

Advertisements
Posted in TV Shows, Urdu Dramas

Haara Dil Episode 1 – What else is new?

So what did I pick up after about a 5 month gap from the last show I was watching? This:

Oh, I’ve tried watching some but I don’t like one thing or another so it’s just been Agents of SHIELD and Stranger Things. Why this particular drama, you ask? It has two answers, a significant one and an insignificant one. I’ll answer the former shortly.

The insignificant thing (in the case of this show) was the pairing. I almost always decide on watching  a show if it has the leads I want to see together. So even if it’s filled head to toe with infuriating shiz, chances are I’ll see it through to the end. I’m a romantic like that.

I came across the promo on Instagram about a week ago and initially I was like mmmhmmm, okay, but I kept watching it anyway and as it reached its end, I found myself tempted. Two things stood out to me in that promo:

  • The catchy theme song of the drama.
  • The shaadi scene near the end of the promo.

That, fellow Pakistanis, was what sold it to me. That “shaadi-scene” was the selling point. It convinced me that if nothing else the pairing would be worth it. Please, restrain yourselves and hold the judgment and disgust for a few minutes while I explain. This was the “significant thing” I was referring to earlier:

The promo is pretty unremarkable up to that point. What happens is that the heroine enters the scene basket full of flowers in hand, it’s a wedding setup obviously and our hero sees her come in and is mesmerized and all that sweet crap. But then he suddenly goes all serious and rushes towards her, at which point the thing goes slo-mo while the melody picks up and we see him snatching her dupatta from her shoulders which had caught fire from the numerous dias lining both sides of the entrance. Right? And she’s gobsmacked, no shit, while he holds her forearm to keep her from, erm, I don’t know, stumbling? He throws the dupatta as far as he can while her hair flutters and sways and then they have a staring contest:

And this is his face through the entire sequence. Do I live for this shit? Yes, in facto, I do. Meanwhile, those two dudes in the background are having the most awkward time of their lives.

I’m a non-fan of Danish Taimoor, which is my way of saying that while I admire his talents, I’m not particularly fond of the guy. But you gotta recognize that he is the perfect hero material. I mean… LOOK AT HIS SMOLDER. The smolder did it, I tell you. It was EXCELLENT. I’ve seen this scene a couple million times since (it was LIT, intending pun obviously) and it spurred me into watching the show itself so I guess it did its job. That’s all there is to scenes and situations like that, there is next to no weight in context of the plot but they’re sure as hell nice to watch.

Also, just as an aside, since I’ve seen this on repeat I noticed that she throws the basket she was holding when he reaches to snatch her duaptta-on-fire. Like throws it. I found this hysterical for reasons plain as day. She could have kept holding the basket or she could have dropped it if that was really necessary but she straight up flings it up and backwards. Again, it’s not about the basket it’s about the smolder so I forgive this.

Does this mean I’m in love with this show and it is the best thing I’ve seen after five months? NOPE. In fact, it’s as bad as most of them are, judging by the first two episodes I’ve seen, and follows the same tiresome tropes and cliches with the same tiresome characters I’ve seen on television to last me a lifetime.

Here’s our cast of characters:

Hero: He has THE most eye-roll worthy of all introductions. Some jerk insults an elderly in a park and hero forces him, through the power of his smolder, to apologize. Right. My heart is on fire.
Heroine: Actually, I take it back. HERS is THE mostest eye-roll worthy of all introductions: she wakes up at the ass crack of dawn and prays, unsuccessfully persuades her younger sister to do the same, then leaves for university while her head is practically bandaged inside her hijab. Now, I like this stuff when someone bothers to include it in our shows but ONLY if there’s consistency behind it. Off went the hijab in the next scene (and I’m sure) never to be seen again. They add things like these to appeal to people’s better natures and once that’s done, it’s goodbye forever.
Hero’s Father: Also known as tongueless, or witless, or gutless. To summarize, he lacks some spine and balls needed to do things like open his mouth in front of his wife.
Hero’s Mother: I would call her a serpent but that would be a compliment. Serpent’s are associated with intelligence and even if you piss on this notion, serpents are quiet. This woman is a dumb as shit, world-class biatch, her voice box (which she uses frequently to maximum capacity) puts that of a banshee’s to shame.

I’ve seen this particular pathetic pair of parents on screen exactly 489829824 times. You can guess what the plot is going to be like right from here.
Hero’s Sister: She’s her mother’s daughter. Apparently she hates her brother a lot. That’s just my opinion by the way. Why else would she actively contrive to spew venom against the girl he loves even on her wedding day? Like, don’t you have something better to do right now, you miserable mewling porcupine?
Heroine’s Father: Significantly better than the other father but unremarkable, regardless.
Heroine’s Mother: Cheerless and depressing, the true representation of an unmarried girl’s mother.
Heroine’s Sister: Sharp-mouthed if not sharp-witted.

So you see, these people are the epitome of original.

NOT.

The Plot:

This is where the “what else is new” part comes from. I mourn writers who think the cleverest thing they can come up with is a man and a woman straining against the bonds of society, their parents and snakes in place of siblings to be together and eventually get married. Bhaiyo aur logo… I’m SICK and TIRED of being SICK and TIRED of this shit. With this running as the core, there is so much that you can do to make it even seem a bit unique. You can’t. Everything, from the mild/mute/aggressive/depressing parents to second love interests, it’s ALL THE SAME. First episodes are supposed to be impressive, not just visually (which they can be and this one certainly tried but with shallow means and things like a trite shaadi sequence) but in terms of story as well. This is the fucking foundation of the whole show and you decide to screw it all up by showing the EXACT same thing we’ve seen already a shit-ton of times.

NO THANKS.

The woman who plays the hero’s mother, I’m singling her out even though all of the elders people who play parents share the same unfortunate thing, I’ve seen her play this bitchy, difficult-to-reason-with mother who makes the life of her own child miserable for the stupidest of reasons 99999 times since I could understand what I was watching. It astounds me to see that these people don’t protest, don’t even try to do something as minor as thinking up a plausible reason for their characters to behave in this way. Sure they have scripts but can’t you discuss? Can’t you, oh, I don’t know, take artistic liberties or some such bullshit? No? Well then I guess I’ll keep watching you play a thousand more iterations of this overdone woman until I die.

I can’t even with how ridiculous and bakwas and cliched everything has been in this episode. I should provide a more detailed summary but I’m not gonna because it won’t be necessary. Right now, I’m willing to keep up with this crap because of that one goddamn scene, proof that I’m not quite right in the head. I’ll keep watching and reviewing just to shit on it and we’ll see how long I can endure.

Rating: 2/5

 

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

The Ancient Magus’s Bride – The End (?)

Related image

Like, really?

Really, really seriously?

I did not, and I mean did NOT, see this coming. It ended? Just like that? I watched it like I would any other episode, without so much as hint that this was it. These past few episodes have been a confusing blur. Too much happened and  most of it made no sense and it was so rushed. I have read only seven volumes of the manga, I couldn’t find the last two ones. But dude, I feel so underwhelmed!

I reviewed the episode up till the 17th episode and it ended on the 24th so I have a good seven episodes to cover now. Great. I’ll try to imbue as much disappointment into this as I possibly can because whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.

Episode 18: Forgive and Forget

Chise gets a new friend and Elias throws a tantrum. Add a very confusing cameo by some fae entity, a dragon kidnapping and the now traditional passing out of Chise and voila!

Honestly, I liked the Chise/Elias moments but the rest was pretty mixed. I’ve been really bummed with the magic aspect of this series from the beginning. There isn’t a clear sense of what’s what and the girl that showed up out of the blue and helped Ruth had me like, eh? Who dis? Cartaphilius came back and that was cool since I was itching to know more about that guy.

Episode 19: Any port in a storm

Cartaphilius kidnaps two dragons and sells one and Elias and Chise with a bunch of Alchemists plan to buy it from the same auction Chise was sold at.

Again, so many different things that are just not given enough time. The alchemists for one, they have this entire college dedicated to studying magic and yet as much as wanted to know more about it, its mention was restricted to just Elias not letting Chise go there and learn. There is a mysterious woman that shows up who wants God knows what from Chise but then the dragon transforms and breaks loose.

Episode 20: You can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs

So despite knowing how fragile she is Elias straight up lets her do magic whenever she’s having these sympathetic “feelings” for others. Blegh. To stop the dragon, she drains its magic (great idea) while Elias conveniently gets blasted in the face and so Chise gets cursed transforming one of her arms into a monstrosity. Shannon, the fairy doctor tells her that she’s gonna die. What else is new?

And the woman that appeared out of nowhere in the last episode happens to be a witch who offers help in exchange of Chise joining her coven. There are witches and covens too and we only get to know about it in episode 20 and then five minutes in the next one. How DOES this world work?

Episode 21: Necessity has no law

The meeting with the witches bears no fruit, obviously, instead we see how their leader has been grown into a tree because of something I don’t remember. The witch from before cries and stuff and I was confused if I was supposed to give a shit about some random witch leader that literally just disappeared after 5 seconds.

Elias tries to sacrifice Stella to save Chise because it’s a stellar idea, Chise finds out, slaps him and walks out and Stella is actually Cartaphilius so everyone’s like damn but Chise goes with him anyway to save the remaining dragon and Stella.

Not gonna lie, Chise being pissed at Elias and leaving him, that was a development I actually liked. I still didn’t get the hint that the show might be about to end but they were delving deeper into that child freak’s mystery which was definitely a plus.

Episode 22: As you sow, so shall you reap

I should also mention that whatever coherent bit of summary I can manage here is by reading the Wikipedia page because watching didn’t tell me shit.

Cart (short for his too long name I’m tired of writing) wants to switch places with Chise, he wants to die but is cursed to live forever which vice versa for her so he proposes an exchange of arms but swaps eyes instead first to check if it would work. Yikes. I thought that was a clever idea.

So we saw Chise past and how his father left with his brother. Just like that. No shit, bro, thanks for showing us exactly what you told with no real insight as to why the heck it even happened. And Chise’s “moving on” bit was not moving in the least bit. The thing I actually wanted to know was what they skipped entirely.

Episode 23: Nothing seek, nothing find

Elias is throwing a tantrum, again and those two weridos Oberon and Titania try to coerce him into living in the fairy land with Chise but he refuses because sentiment and then they find Chise and chase Cart/Joseph around.

We finally see why he calls himself Joseph while others call him Cart-a-what-sits. So after they merged together, Joseph/Cart became an alchemist? Or was Cart always an alchemist, even when he “threw a stone at Jesus”. I guess we’ll never fucking know.

Episode 24: Live and let live

After Chise catches up to Cart it is followed by a bunch of crazy shit that I was barely able to follow but basically what happened was she linked herself with him and now they’ll live forever.

And then Chise accepts herself as Elias’s bride, she’s in a flipping wedding dress and they exchange rings so why the fuck not, eh?

Now, if there’s to be a second season this might be comforting because as it is, this was THE most lame thing I’ve ever seen. I can’t even begin to describe how disappointed and betrayed I feel though I certainly hope it’s apparent from the cranky commentary.

Here’s a list of things that needed urgent addressing:

  • Where did Elias come from? “Appearing out of nowhere” may sound intriguing for a while but it wears off surprisingly quickly. “Child of Thorns”, “Halfling” and many other nicknames are tossed around for Elias even a casual assumption that he might have dabbled in dark magic to become such a thing. However, NOT enough.
  • Was Elias never going to transform completely into a human? I meannnnn… you know what I mean!
  • Chise’s father just up and left with her brother in the middle of the night and never came back? RIIIIIIIIIIIGHT.
  • I’m still vastly unclear about the rules of magic and the slay vegga/beggie situation but that is probably just me. But not really. The college, witches, covens, alchemists, mages, fae, there’s a lot but you can’t still grasp the essence of it all, know what I mean?
  • And, now that I think back on it, Elias just straight up expressing his hope of making Chise his bride after buying her from an auction made no sense! He wanted to learn more about humans? Well, he could have easily done it (and did too) without that part. So I ask again, WHY. (0-o)
  • I seem to have run out of questions just now but NO MATTER. These should suffice.

There are prequel episodes as well which I haven’t seen but I  read that these were incorporated into some of the early volumes which I have read so I guess I won’t find the answers I’m looking for.

I’m just genuinely so upset with the whole show. It should have had at least 30 episodes and taken the the time to satisfactorily explain things instead of just rushing past them while introducing new characters and things in every episode that just as easily fled from memory.

The show had its moments, funny ones, sweet ones but save from a couple of episodes I don’t think I was blown away by anything in particular. And the way I’m feeling right now is overshadowing the rest as well. Let’s not forget the utter disaster that was the change in the show’s theme song. Eurgh, so bad.

Rating:

I would give this series a 3/5. I wish it made more sense than it did.

Cheers!

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Urdu Dramas

Haalim Episode 12 – سلطان ساز Review

Before I give in to the feels and write this review, there are two things I need to mention here.

ONE: My blog is a year old today! *wipes aansoo*
TWO: While discussing the last episode with a close friend, this conversation happened which I promised myself I’d put up in this review:

IMG_5886IMG_5887IMG_5888IMG_5889

There’s still innocence in this world, is all I’m saying.

Now, this episode. It was one of THE best episodes of this book which was apt since it marked ONE YEAR of Haalim. 12 months, 12 episodes, I can’t believe it. This book is as old as my blog. Aww. It was also a 100 pages long which takes roughly three hours for me to read, possibly more. But every single one of these pages was incredible and I’m still bedazzled by the beauty of this episode.

At this point I feel bad for all of them, I adore all of them and I understand all of them. Even Ashar. I think the readers realize how amazing that is. Ashar wasn’t always a jerk who betrayed his family, he went through his fair share to get where he is now and reading the scene where he goes to talk to his sister about the papers he’s about to submit broke my heart. They all have an origin story and we just impatiently form opinions before we get to know what that story is.

Same with Asra. I do not exactly forgive her for how she played a part in Ashar’s change of heart but siblings are like that. I know that first hand. But she’s not living in a fairy tale either. She and Faateh are just about finished and there’s no one side you can pick. Yeah, why should she endure all the scrutiny and struggle again after giving her entire life to Faateh’s cause, her time, her career, her daughter? If that’s what partners do then Faateh hasn’t exactly been forthcoming either. He’s not a gentle husband, he’s not even a present husband but then again, he’s burdened by the enormity of his dream the battle he has to forge every day to make it come true. They both need someone to support them but they’ve realized that it’s not gonna be each other.

These people’s lives are complicated beyond imagining, tangled and frustrating and there was never going to be any black and white here.

This book is a short guide to politics and I appreciate the lessons I learn every month. Like I’m sure 98% of the rest I also did not know the true meaning of First/Second/Third World Countries.

The biggest change to happen was Taaliya’s decision to live with a clean slate from then on and the instigator of that was a combination of Faateh’s influence, him losing his memory and her realization of her true self. She struggled and fought, oh yes but she is Taaliya and she is strong and for once, I did not think it against her that he rose back up quickly and put things into perspective. She always has a plan. I absolutely loved the part where she made a new, true profile for herself and decided to base the rest of her life on that. Not only was that “trick” an effective psychological motivator it was her taking the first step.

However, there was one particular moment I did not like and that was Haalim asking Faateh questions in a very Taaliya-like way on the phone. I thought this was a very out-of-character thing to do for Haalim at least and it was odd besides. Haalim is supposed to be this all-knowing, super-smart and mysterious investigator who knows everything about everyone and this conversation made a dent in that because of Taaliya’s emotional vulnerability at the time.

And our favorite historian (yes, well, I’ve warmed up to him) Adam! Such a diva that guy. I’m referring to the scene where he finds a neighbor school girl pouring over Bangara Ya Malayo and she says in a very Ahmar like way that “…chowk main durre parne chahyen” then Adam HMMPHS and stomps away. I wanted to hug him then. And Datin and Adam’s stand-off gave me life. It also gave me the thought that while I never liked Taaliya and Datin as a team, Datin and Adam together just might prove to be hilarious sidekicks. I just hope he finds what he’s looking for and stops waiting to be lead.

Taaliya as Faateh’s body woman. YAAAAASSSSSSSS. Dude, you’ve no idea what you’ve unleashed. This scenario is many different kinds of win, I can’t. While she’s inevitably going to be promoted or something I can’t wait to see what kind of confrontations and revelations this leads to. He has unintentionally given Taaliya the perfect job, not only does her capabilities suit this line of work, this gives the two of them the best opportunity to remain by each other’s side which is what they both wanted. *sniff*

Also, we’ll see if her proximity and the habits he has acquired plus the discrepancies in his memory affect his narrative memory and trigger those forgotten moments to come flooding back.

Rating: 5/5

Quote of the Episode:

مرد عورتوں کو مضبوط بننے کے لۓ تو کہتے ہیں لیکن وہ خود کو ان مضبوط عورتوں کے لۓ تیار نہیں کرتے

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

The Ancient Magus’s Bride: Episodes 13 – 17 Review

Here’s a general rundown of the episodes I watched this month:

Episode 13: “East, west, home’s best”

First and most importantly of all, WHAT THE TRUCKING HELL WITH THE NEW THEME SONG?! Why, oh, why do these people change a perfectly beautiful theme to a disastrously horrendous one? They did it with DeathNote and they did it to this show. WTF. They ruined it. DESTROYED. THIS IS SACRILEGE. I FRICKIN’ HATE IT.

Now, the episode:

  • A lot of sweet Elias and Chise moments. Though, sometimes, when he picks her up it feels a tad unnecessary.
  • Those sheep thingies were so CUTE.
  • I like how little by little they’re both expressing themselves in front of each other.
  • This episode was great in terms of relationship development and eventful besides.

Episode 14: “Looks breed love” 

  • It’s funny how Elias always takes care to mention that Chise shouldn’t exert too much magic being a Sleigh Beggie and all and then when someone needs help he just casually steps aside and LETS her do everything.
  • I liked how Joel’s tale came to a close. Tying ends is a good thing.
  • Also, that weird Pokemon dude showed up outta nowhere just to mess with Elias. WTH. People like these make me hurl.
  • True to tradition, this episode ended with Chise and blood. She either goes missing, or gets stabbed or vomits blood…
  • Hello? Where is Ruth? He exists, you know.

Episode 15: “There is no place like home”

  • Aaaaand we’re back to the realm of the fae where you’ll find people with suck-tastic medical techniques and queens with sentient tits.
  • I liked only two things about this visit: a) time passes slowly in fairy land than human land. b) If a human stays in the land of the fae, he/she ends up becoming more fae like. That’s it. I hated the doctor and the stupid queen who’s in desperate need of a bra and her stupid husband.
  • Silver’s past was a little sad and I’m glad for the peek we got. She talks after all.

  • Hellloooooooooo? Ruth, you there?

Episode 16: “God’s mill grinds slow but sure”

  • This was fun, sure but the fact that Alice had no one to call but Chise seemed weird to me.
  • Now we got a look inside Alice and Renfred’s past which was cool.
  • I kinda want to see that demented child-man now. He’s been gone since Ruth’s introduction.
  • Chise and Elias’s kisses. LMAO.
  • Ruth, O Ruth? Where you at, bro?

Episode 17: “Look before you leap”

  • Pokemon freak back at it again with his lame and hateful games, messing with people for no good reason. Not amused.
  • Since Chise’s ring broke, Angelica made her a magic reduction bracelet. Which is gonna break too and Chise is gonna vomit blood and then they’re gonna go to fae realm again.
  • The teddy bear-crystal flower thing was pretty clever, I’d give Elias that.
  • Oh, there you are Ru-

 

 

Cheers!

Posted in Gobbledygook, TV Shows, Urdu Dramas

Yeh Raha Dil’s First Birthday!

The anniversary of it’s first episode, that is. Because I’m sure as heck gonna do a last episode anniversary too. That would be it’s first Deathday, eh? Anyway, who knows what I’m talking about? Probably no one. Is that going to stop me? No, sir.

Allow me to illuminate: Yeh Raha Dil is (or was *sob*) a Pakistani television show that started airing last year February 13th. It was a romantic comedy, the name translates to “Here Is My Heart” in English. The End.

No, but it made its mark on me. I loved it SO much, all 26 episodes. We don’t have seasons here. 97% of the shows run for 25-30 weeks at most. DEVASTATING. I wrote this long-ass post when it ended in August last year, interested folks click here.

Meet BAEs:

BAE # 1: Hayaat

Cute AF, independent, headstrong, brave, wise, infuriating, kind, the list goes on…

BAE # 2: Zaki

Cute AF, spoiled brat, patient, kind, tolerant, loving, filled-with-mush, confused, indecisive and caring.

Together, they make the “Ship of Feels”. BEHOLD:

I LOVE YOU ZAKI! *shoves Hayaat aside*

HAAAAAAAAAYE

BAE # 3 & 4: Haroon & Afaaq

Cute AF, adorable AF, huggable AF, together they make the most darling dadster duo I’ve ever seen.

Their wives, meh, not so much.

BAE # 5: Nida

Ah! She was so much more that all of us expected. Respect.

Funnily enough, when I started watching it, it was already 7 episodes in. Then I binge watched the previous ones and had the absolute best time in a long time. And then began the torture that is waiting a week for an episode.

I made this stupid little spread thingy sometime after, which I am proud of by the way. I’m no expert at that sort of thing so I was pleased when it turned out to be better than expected.

Ah, the things fangirls do for their fandoms…

Even if you don’t understand Urdu, please listen to the OST of the show. It’s the title track with the preview of the show. It’s melodious and beautiful.

Yeh Raha Dil OST

I wish Yumna and Ahmed Ali would work together again!

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

The Ancient Magus’s Bride: Episodes 6-12 Review

I’m loving this show right now. Not entirely obsessed with it but it is really good.

I haven’t kept up with the Manga after Volume 3 but now I will read the next one as soon as I can. Not comparing the two in this post as I did before. It’s too much work.

Episode 6: The Faerie Queene

After the whole cat fiasco Chise and Elias return but she’s spent a lot of her power so she passes out and remain so for two weeks. The faerie queen and her husband visit in the meanwhile.

  • I’m not really digging the magic system so far. There’s very little we know about it and each small bit comes after a week so you’ve already forgotten what little you were told.  I like being told straight up what is what and how and why and this isn’t happening here. I think at some point someone said something about why Chise is doomed to die because she is a Slay Vega or Sleigh Beggy I don’t remember now.
  • The queen had the most unfortunate boobs I have ever seen. They seemed to have a life of their own. It was extremely uncomfortable to watch and unnecessary as well. Eh. I guess people dig that stuff.
  • It was a rather boring episode.

Episode 7: Talk of the devil, and he is sure to appear

Now THAT was AWESOME!

  • This episode was INSANE! Not only did we get to see that freak who screwed over Mathew and his wife, we also saw Yuris later named Ruth by Chise and the adorable bond between Renfred and his apprentice Alice.
  • Oh, and Elias’s true form as well. WHAT.
  • The premise was exciting and it ended with a huge LE GASP.

Episode 8: Let sleeping dogs lie

  • There were so many adorable things in this episode, all of them concerning Ruth. He belonged, I guess, to another girl who was killed by that man-child freak and used for his experiment. He considered her his sister and refused to let go when she died. So when he sees Chise he is struck by how alike they are. He asks to be Chise’s familiar.
  • I have no idea how Chise survived an IMPALEMENT.
  • So the freak tells Elias and co. why he does his experiments: he wants to find a way to stop his suffering? Which was something I don’t really understand. He’s lived for hundreds maybe thousands of years so it isn’t immortality he wants. Meh. Point is, he’s bonkers and potentially, the main villain.
  • These two episodes were one of my favorites.

Episode 9: None so deaf as those who will not hear

  • Another great and happening episode where Chise and Ruth have time to explore their bond. He is a cuddlymushbear by the way.

See?

  • Elias can’t revert to his human-like shape after the events of the last two episodes so he stays in his room for days. Chise realizes that she isn’t as indifferent as she originally thought and misses him.
  • There were a LOT of people in this episode. The church priest, Angelica, a weird vampire fairy and the man she literally sticks with, a messenger from Lindel come to take Chise to the land of dragons again.
  • Angelica makes Chise realize that she’s being far too dependent on Elias and that was a good reminder. Not that she has a lot of choices but it was still something she needed to be aware of at least.
  • This leads Chise to break down in front of Elias and politely and tearfully demand answers. Obviously, he went with “gimme some time gurrrl”.
  • Now the fairy/vampire part. It expanded the magical world a little bit. Ruth played the protective big brother and told the fairy not to even touch Chise (and boy did she listen) and then he up and left! So Chise went inside the old man’s house, had tea, read his book and discovered that the fairy loved this man but he couldn’t see her yet still she stayed. This provided a parallel of sorts to Elias and Chise. But…

SO unnecessary…

I can literally pick put parts that are just there for sexual appeal and nothing else. A 99% naked fairy, ridiculous amounts of cleavage, and said fairy fondling a really old man while leaving nothing to the imagination being some of them.

Episode 10: We live and learn

  • This was boooooring. So Chise goes back to the land of dragons because Lindel wants her to make her own staff/wand when secretly he’s worried about her. Even the fact that we see how Elias met Lindel, it wasn’t really exciting.
  • The grand-daughter in question is Chise and the ‘he’ is Lindel. That was cute.
  • So Elias just showed up out of nowhere, remembering nothing except the color red, in his monster form and Lindel took him as his apprentice. He might have been a human before, turned into a beast by dabbing in dark magic, Lindel’s master suggests. And at some point, Elias has eaten humans. Interesting.
  • I love it when the animation turns goofy. I just love it.

Episode 11: Lovers ever run before the clock

  • Lindel continues on telling Chise about the time he spent training Elias. There’s an exciting encounter with a bunch of villagers when they see Elias and hurt Lindel. Elias freaks out and in his anger, almost kills them all.
  • Chise works on her wand/staff thingy and talks to Elias via magic. They’re just steps away from full on confessing their love but tend to draw it out whenever the moment comes.
  • Lindel: “I’m sure I’d be very tasty. But please don’t eat me.”
    Elias: “Uuuuuuuuh… I won’t.”
  • A good episode, better than the previous one at least.

Episode 12: Better to ask the way than go astray

  • I was getting a little tired of the Lindel/Dragons/Wand story line which had stretched to three episodes and I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to like this one. But BOY! This one scene made up for it all! I loved those two minutes. I mean LOVED them so much I ended up rewatching it FIVE TIMES. That is a HUGE deal as I rarely rewatch. It was so epic! The music was awesome and the imagery was gorgeous!
  • Lindel adds the finishing touches to Chise’s wand and as soon as she touches it she’s transported to this realm(?) where she talks with that weird dead dragon again. She expresses her doubts, clears her head, gets a self-esteem boost and returns to the real world all confident-like. Then she uses her wand to transform herself into a fiery phoenix and returns home.

Then she faints, thereby not getting to the part where she tells Elias her “feelings”. Whatever, the phoenix scene makes up for EVERYTHING.

  • She dreams about a happier time of her childhood when her mother wasn’t suicidal, her brother was about to be born and her father was still there. Interestingly enough, both of her parents could see the fae creatures. Huh.

The title track of this show is so addictive even though I have zero clue about what it’s saying. It’s worth watching for sure.

Cheers.

 

 

 

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

The Ancient Magus’s Bride – Episodes 4 & 5 Review

Anime:

Episode 4: “Everything Must Have A Beginning”
Episode 5: “Love Conquers All”

Manga:

Chapter 4: “Everything Must Have A Beginning”
Chapter 5: “Misfortunes Seldom Come Singly”
Chapter 6: “Curiosity Killed The Cat”
Chapter 7: “Love Conquers All”

My Rating: 4/5

That’s a two-part story in the anime and it gets quite chilly, actually. Right after the events of the last episode, after dealing with the Dragon issue, whatever that was, Chise is exhausted and so she passes out and wakes up on a train en route to their next task given by the Church. While she sleeps she dreams of cats and the episode just happens to be about cats.

  • Another magical aspect: cats having nine lives, the ability to talk and a king.
  • The Manga has Wizards vs Sorcerers while the Anime has Sorcerers vs Alchemists.
  • Everybody has their own opinions about Elias. While Angelica’s and Lindel’s were positive, the Alchemist/Wizard they encounter at the end of the fourth episode calls him “The Evil Magician”.
  • I read this somewhere, the Anime calls Chise “Sleigh Beggy” instead of Slay Vega. Which is considerably less cool-sounding.
  • In one scene Elias licks Chise’s neck cut. Now, two things: one, so that bone head moves. That’s the first time he did something with it. Two, this was intended as a gentlemanly gesture perhaps or to show how caring he is but I’m getting very mixed feelings with this. She is FIFTEEN for the love of God. AND she’s filled with distrust for people. One would think that treading with caution would be the wisest course of action around such a person. Elias just goes there. Sheesh.
  • The Alchemist/Wizard Renfred calls him “Pilum Murialis” which of course, I didn’t catch in the anime. The Manga shows the translation beneath in faded letters: the one that tears and eats castles. Fascinating…
  • Elias’s reasoning for pushing Chise into destroying the blight and not doing it himself was so shady. If it was the truth, it was lame. If it wasn’t, maybe it was a test of sorts.
  • The fifth episode was AH-MAZING. It scared the living shit out of me and yet, by the end of it, I was crying. CRYING, DAMMIT!

I enjoyed this story line a lot and though things keep popping up here and there seemingly randomly I see can it will all make sense eventually.

 

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

The Ancient Magus’s Bride – Episodes 2 and 3 Review

I forgot to express how much I love the theme song of this show already. It is ETHEREAL. I kid you not. So dreamy and beautiful.  I’ve only listened to it twice and totally fallen for it. I wish there were subtitles to it so I could understand what the girl is saying. I’d have to google it.

Episode 2: “One today is worth two tomorrows.”

This was so good! I really liked it. There was a glimpse of Chise’s mother, a visit to a fellow mage and a visit from a friend.

  • Because of the hilarious thrashing he got from Angelica, his fellow mage, it was confirmed that Elias “Bonehead” Ainsworth was acting pretty weirdly. That scene was literally my favorite. Like, you’ve literally bought an emotionally unstable and potentially powerful girl and now you think it wise to tell her that she is to be your apprentice because she is special and that you are going to make her your bride. Sheesh, dude. Develop some tact.

  • The Manga calls her “Slay Vega” but I swear in the anime they say something like Slay “Beggie”.
  • Angelica explained a little about magic to Chise. Only, the explanations of the anime and Manga were different. In anime, she is told her that Sorcerers break the laws of nature to do things while Alchemists alter the laws. In the Manga, she differentiates between Wizards doing spells by understanding then altering the laws of nature while Sorcerers doing magic by borrowing it from the fae. This was confusing so it makes sense that they changed it in the show.
  • The Manga also had this hilarious scene where Chise asks if Angelica and Elias were lovers. His reaction was priceless.
  • The priest that visited Elias mentioned something about his “superiors” and giving Elias tasks as payback. That was interesting. I also find it hysterical that whenever he’s annoyed, he resorts to saying “Die”.
  • Also, when the animation gets goofy to show the characters’ funny reactions, I absolutely love it.

My Rating: 4/5

Episode 3: “The scale distinguishes not between gold and lead.”

Eh, this wasn’t that exciting. I mean, we are learning more about Mages and the world they live in and stuff but this episode was almost entirely about watching an almost dead dragon die. So, no, I didn’t find it that exciting.

  • Elias takes Chise to Iceland to run one of the errands for the priest I think. They are there to check in dragons. Chise is suddenly abducted by one. It turns out to be nothing serious as it’s Lindel, another acquaintance of Elias, who brings Chise to the land of the dragons.
  • Lindel is older than Elias who just happens to be 300+. Cool.
  • I just didn’t see the point of those endless minutes spent hallucinating with the dead dragon. There was a lot of nothing.
  • So, mages need wands, do they? Elias doesn’t have one as of yet. He was seen chanting two times and the other couple of times he didn’t even say anything. Angelica didn’t have a wand either, rather she took help from a water spirit. Maybe since mages use non-human sources to channel magic it’s different for everyone?
  • Another tantalizing bit from Chise’s past, the dragon mentions something about her “not jumping being a good thing”? No idea what that was. Presumably, she tried to commit suicide after her mother’s death. Oh, and her mother died in front of her and her father was still alive but she didn’t know where. That was in the second episode.

The Manga and anime do have differences here and there so I’ll be reading and watching side by side.

My Rating: 3/5

Have you seen this show? Let’s discuss!

 

 

Posted in Anime, TV Shows

The Ancient Magus’s Bride – Episode 1 Review

About a month ago, my brother told me about this anime show he was watching. He explained the gist of the show and thought that I should watch it. What he said was interesting enough to pique my curiosity but I didn’t get to it immediately. A month later with virtually nothing for me to watch I finally gave in.

It’s called Mahoutsukai no Yome in Japanese which translates to The Ancient Magus’s Bride.

The story is about a young girl called Chise Hatori sold to a mage who goes by the name of Elias Ainsworth. He means to make her his apprentice since she happens to be able to see fae creatures and channel magic. And also, to make her his bride.

Now, here’s the fun part. This is what he looks like:

He’s one big dude.

My original intention was to read the Manga first. There are eight or nine volumes I think, while the show is on-going with about 8 episodes already aired. I read about 44 pages of the first volume after I watched the episode last night. The length had the entirety of the first episode so I’m guessing there are about 4 episodes in each volume.

And it was really good.

I’ll try to summarize without spoiling anything.

The first episode was mainly all about the Mage buying Chise and bringing her to his home. But there’s a lot there just waiting to be told.

 

  • Chise can see fae creatures and she is supposedly a very unique person called “Slay Vega”. People who attract the fae and are able to use magic through them. There were all sorts of magical and fantastical creatures in the episode including a mermaid, fairies and a bunch of others. There was also a gateway to the fae world so there’ll be more of that surely.
  • The world is modern, there was a shot of skyscrapers. Too modern, in fact, because slavery is accepted again. The “organization” Chise was bought from was seen housing all manner of creatures for sale.
  • There is a glimpse of her past, she was turned away from her own family then different relatives because she was “odd” until she was approached by the organization and she relented. I don’t think her being odd was the entire reason. She was fairly sane so I’m not sure what exactly happened to cause all those people to abandon her.
  • She is 15 and I found that quite disturbing. It’s a little suggestive, the first episode.
  • The mysterious Elias Ainsworth. I’m most excited to learn about his origins. Was he ever human?
  • I find his behavior toward Chise a little endearing, a little weird, the way he calls her “child” and “my puppy” (not unkindly) and pats her head and abruptly hugs her, and also a little disturbing because again, she is just fifteen and he’s quite possibly doing those things not only because she craves positive human interaction but also because he intends to marry her. His actions feel as if he doesn’t know how to behave around other people, though there is another maid in the house. Guess we’ll see.
  • He mentions a war after which Mages were distrusted. This bit made me remember Howl’s Moving Castle  where Howl fights in the country’s wars as the king or queen’s personal wizard.
  • The manga covered everything the episode did. I was able to catch things that went by too fast for me to grasp in the episode, otherwise it was 99% the same as the Manga. I still intend to read it all.

All I can say at this point is that I am suitably intrigued and will definitely see this through.

Rating: 3/5