Monthly Archives: March 2019

To LA or not to LA, that is the question

I’m feeling the pressure here, guys. Every Monday without fail, my stats explode. People clearly want to read my thoughts on the latest episode of NCIS: Los Angeles. And I rarely deliver. At least not with such speed.

To be perfectly open with you, I have the last six episodes just sitting here, waiting for my attention. I can’t decide if I’m going to watch, or if now is the time to give up. The whole show has gone silly.

Perhaps that is what my readers want confirmed? Or are we supposed to celebrate together, delirious with happiness over Deeks and Kensi getting married? Yes, I know they are. Social media has been all over this wedding.

It’s hard to decide. Or rather, I wonder if or when I will regret stopping. But I think back to NCIS: New Orleans. I carried on until Christmas. That’s the first Christmas. Then I stopped, half-heartedly believing I might start again if I grew bored. I haven’t yet. And I discovered recently that they are on season five, or some such impossible number!

Sam, Deeks, Kensi and Callen

I have invested a lot in LA. They grew on me. I carried on because the characters became my friends. I carried on when it became really far too silly. They rallied a little, and were temporarily better than big brother NCIS. And more recently they were not.

Not in the slightest. It’s become such an embarrassment I wonder the actors don’t refuse to work.

I’m being harsh, I know. But really, this is letting the fans down. It really is.

When I look at the piled up episodes, I feel no curiosity, which is usually how one gives in and starts again.

Roger Whittaker is 83!

       Happy 83rd Birthday, Roger!

Roger Whittaker in Hanover 2007

The photo is from Hannover 2007. It’s hard to believe that’s twelve years ago.

Yeah, baby

Do CBS scriptwriters not know the facts of life? The birds and the bees, and stuff like that?

In this week’s Bull Marissa’s husband – whom I can’t take to, no matter what – has opened her mail. He has found she has had her eggs frozen and wants to know if she wants a baby.

I can find no sensible reason for the frozen eggs, but never mind that for the time being. But when he reckons they might try for a baby, Marissa says they can’t. He has to go and artificially inseminate her frozen eggs!

But they have all the equipment they need, right there, in the marital bed!

It’s as with Palmer and Mrs Palmer in NCIS. They were going to start married life giving a home to a needy child, so instead of making their own baby, they enter into a contract with a surrogate mother.

Something’s wrong here.

The Hate U Give

Recently I have been mentioning Angie Thomas a bit over on Bookwitch. Before Saturday’s EIBF event with her, I wanted to read her books, and ended up reading the second one and watching the film of the first book on DVD. I thought this would be efficient use of my time. One problem now is that I liked the film so much that I might need to read the book too.

Having read On the Come Up, I felt that The Hate U Give exactly mirrored Angie’s writing. I almost sat there nodding my head in agreement with everything, as though I was reading the book. Knowing how most films are not exactly like the novels they are based on, I should probably treat the film with a little pinch of salt. And then read the book.

The Hate U Give

A refreshingly black film, I was aware that I don’t know much at all. I’ve no experience of the lives the characters lead, and it was often hard to hear what they were saying. But that’s me, not them. Just as fans of the books like the fact that the characters speak like them, that goes for the film as well.

The Carter family live in a poor, black neighbourhood, but ambition for their children means that all three are sent to the mostly white school further away. As the main character Starr says, she’s another person when she’s at school. She has to be. And Starr does it so well that none of her friends have an inkling what her real life is like.

Starr is with a childhood friend when he is shot and killed by the police. Her whole life changes. She doesn’t know what to do or whose advice she should take, but eventually she realises she needs to stand up for her friend and do ‘the right thing.’

It’s a bleak situation, handled very well. As Angie said, she needs triumph to balance the trauma, so it’s not all negative. But to stay true to what so many black people face every day, this feels like a hopeless situation. You shouldn’t have to spend every day in fear of what the police will do if they ‘notice’ you. Except this is reality for millions in America.

THE HATE U GIVE

Starr’s family are not perfect, but they work together. Her dad has been in jail, and her mum is another strong mother, just like Bri’s in On the Come Up. There are friends, neighbours, an uncle, even the local crooks.

I rather wish they had not made Starr’s white boyfriend* look like a Republican senator-to-be, but other than that this film was pretty perfect. It’s certainly an eye-opener. The question is whether those who need to see it, will.

(Photo © Erika Doss)

*I understand that the original actor was dropped because he made racist remarks. That proves how necessary books and films like this one are.