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WITCHES OF EAST END, Episode Four

This week kicks off with sexy EMT Tommy and Wendy having a lovely picnic of beer and brats. Sadly, the universe seems to be conspiring against these two love birds. Just as their picnic gets going, a creepy rat scurries on the scene and climbs onto Tommy’s shoulder. Wendy grabs it and throws it aside but not before realizing the rat is more than just a rat. Creepy rat scurries back to the basement torture chamber holding Victor and into the arms of her co-conspirator. If the way creepy captor guy’s tongue works over rat girl, Isis, they are more than just friends…so much more. I’ll get to that in a second. Ingrid and Dash are yet again discussing how [...]

MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Three

While this episode did not have a lot of action, we get a deeper understanding of Masters and Virginia through veiled comments and allegories. We start with Masters delivering a baby with adrenogenital hyperplasia, which means the baby was born with ambiguous genitalia. Blood work determines that the baby has XY chromosomes and is therefore a boy. The father, who Masters later refers to as a bully, wants to know if the baby will ever be able to perform like a man. Masters admits that the boy will likely need testosterone shots. The father then refuses to take the baby home unless “it” has surgery to have his penis removed, as the baby wouldn’t be a man if he couldn’t [...]

TRUE BLOOD, Episode Six

Last night’s episode was a major game changer and a blow against the unrelenting pit of despair that this season has been so far. Despite Eric’s awesome jaw ripping-off skills on display at the end of episode five, he and Pam are captured by the Yakuza working for the Yakanomo Corporation. They want Sarah Newlin, too, and are willing to kill Eric and Pam to get to her. But Eric doesn’t want to give up the information, because he doesn’t want to be deprived of the opportunity to kill her himself. Luckily, Pam talks sense into him and they and Yakanomo agree to do it together. Meanwhile, Bill is a responsible vampire adult who decides to make a will in [...]

MASTERS OF SEX, Episode Two

This week we get a rare glimpse of Masters using both his heart and mind when he deals with a patient at his new hospital. But first, he has to deal with Virginia. While Virginia just expected she would be moving with Masters to Memorial Hospital to work on the study with him, Masters informs her it won’t be that easy. Greathouse feels he already took a chance allowing Masters to continue working on the sex study at Memorial; hiring Virginia would be too much. Virginia can’t even work as Masters secretary again since he’s already been assigned one. Masters first day at Memorial is anything but dull. First, he’s met at the entrance of the hospital by Betty and [...]

WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode Three

This episode contains several flashbacks that help us understand the delicate relationship between Joanna and Frederick. After catching a glimpse of The Kings Symbol branded on Frederick’s chest, Joanna finally comes to her senses and remembers why she should be at least somewhat hesitant when it comes to trusting her son. Yes, the evil mark that has been engraved in the torso of the two victims in East End is in fact, the same symbol that’s on Frederick’s chest. The King’s Symbol is the ultimate oath of loyalty to Joanna’s father, Frederick’s grandfather, the King of Asgard. During these flashbacks, we learn that Frederick betrayed his family at the portal. He admits that he loved, followed, and pretty much worshiped [...]

True Blood, Episode Five

** Spoiler Alert ** We’re just five episodes away from True Blood’s true death as Eric and Pam continue their quest to kill Sarah Newlin while Sookie grieves Alcide and everyone else plays musical beds. With Bon Temps victorious at Fangtasia, the episode opens with Eric back on his throne on the club’s stage as he orders Wylla to accompany him and Pam on his hunt for Sarah.  Wylla, however, wants nothing to do with it, and tells Eric she’ll help him find Sarah only if he releases her.  Eric, between a rock and a hard place and running out of time even faster than this season, takes the deal, and Wylla winds up sending him and Pam to Texas [...]

WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode Two

It’s the Fourth of July in East End. Like any good small town, East End is hosting a Fourth of July picnic, complete with kiddie rides and fireworks. The whole town will be in attendance. This episode kicks off with Joanna and Freya looking for Ingrid. Seems she didn’t sleep in her bed last night. If you recall, when we last saw Ingrid she was sleepwalking through the woods and having sex with the Avatar-looking creature. Ingrid is found sleeping it off (and by “it” I mean Avatar sex, but Joanna and Freya think she’s sleeping off too much celebratory alcohol) under a tree in the back yard. When she wakes, Ingrid is feeling fine. In fact, she’s feeling better [...]

TRUE BLOOD, Episode Four

An episode long on administrativia opens with Jason and Sookie making calls to notify the relatives of the recently dead.  Sookie manages to hold it together while talking to Alcide’s father, but Jason chokes up talking to Hoyt. Because every episode apparently has to contain some random content about whether Jason has it in him to be an alpha, Sookie gives him a speech about “manning up” because no one has time to fall apart. Meanwhile, Pam and Eric (and really, why is True Blood about anyone other than Pam and Eric?) are on a private jet headed to Shreveport.  Eric wants to see Willa one more time before he dies, but the actual point of the scene is to [...]

MASTERS OF SEX, Season Two Premiere

Masters of Sex starts its second season with a bang: Suicide, mysterious bruises, and sex with a sister-in-law. We open with a numb Masters sitting in his dark living room in front of his television. The TV sounds a solitary note signaling the end of the broadcast day as a baby cries in the background. Masters ignores the child as flashbacks of frenzied sex with Virginia play before his eyes. In the morning, Virginia is working at the hospital. She is accosted by a doctor in the women’s bathroom but, with an empowering knee to the groin, escapes. Later she laments to handsome Dr. Langham (whom I dearly hope we see more of this season) that the sex study has [...]

THE WITCHES OF EAST END, Season Premiere

Yesterday, BabyScandal and I held a Witches of East End marathon viewing session in preparation for last night’s big Season Two opener. If the show is new to you or if you just need a little refresher, let me help you. The Lifetime TV series is loosely based on Melissa de la Cruz’s book with the same title. Some liberties have been taken: For the bulk of Season One, sisters Ingrid and Freya don’t know they have magical powers. The rest of the season was spent trying to wrap their heads around learning how to be witches without getting killed. Each sister has her own special power: Older, librarian sister Ingrid can write spells, while younger, bartender sister Freya whips [...]

TRUE BLOOD, Episode Three

In True Blood’s ongoing effort to tie up all loose ends and up the body count, this week’s episode sees the return of Sarah Newlin who has turned her compulsive need to obtain status through faith into hanging out at a meditation center in L.A. and shagging her yoga instructor. Meanwhile, Pam and Eric, while discussing Eric’s Hep-V status, are having flashbacks to their adventures in France in 1986. This involves a lot nudity and outdoor sex interrupted by the Authority.  Eric and Pam are in trouble for not registering as vampires, paying their vampire taxes, and also for that outdoor sex thing.  Pam is appropriately scared of the Authority.  Eric, however, offers the Authority representative a few choice words [...]

TRUE BLOOD, Episode Two

One of True Blood’s crackiest conceits has always been the vampire-blood related sex dream.This week we discover that while Sookie is trying to get Bon Temps to let her help them in her big showdown with the angry community in church, Jason Stackhouse is taking a nap and dreaming of his thwarted love with Eric Northman.  From 1980s romance novel clichés featuring four-poster beds, red velvet, and a lot of black satin to Jason’s general inability to do anything right, this scene veers back and forth between high comedy and absolutely scorching sexiness. While Jason is being less than useful, Sookie and the rest of the town make a plan, using the dead girl in the woods to figure out [...]

TRUE BLOOD, Episode One

Season seven begins right where season six left off, at the human-vampire mixer with the infected Hep-V vampires about to attack.  It turns into a mass casualty event with Tara dying off-screen defending her mother. We see her fighting an infected vamp and she seems to have the upper hand, but later in the scene Lettie Mae is clutching Tara’s vampire goo remains.  Oops. Yet the death is so abrupt, it almost feels like a ruse, but it’s unclear what would be in it for Tara or Lettie Mae to fake such a thing. After the attack, it becomes clear that the infected vampires have kidnapped several people, including Arlene and Sam’s girlfriend.  Unfortunately, when Sam chases after them (as [...]

Weekend Viewing: TRUE BLOOD Season 7 Premiere

With the trailer for True Blood’s seventh season warning us that all humans are at risk, it looks likely that the last ten episodes of the beloved supernatural soap opera are going to wrap up with a very bloody bang.  But before the new episodes begin airing this Sunday, June 22 on HBO (and we begin recapping them here), it’s probably a good time to refresh our memories on where things were left when we were last in Bon Temps. After a long season of vampire and human politics with The Authority creating massive in-fighting amongst the vampires and the Louisiana governor’s office doing its best to eliminate vampires, Sookie’s past and family history became the main focus of the [...]

PENNY DREADFUL, Episode 6

We’re back in the current time, with the plot having resumed immediately where it left off after episode four (since episode five was the flashback to Vanessa’s back-story), and Sir Malcolm and Vanessa are arguing about her ability to find out additional information regarding their supernatural foes. She decides to read tarot cards to get information, which only results in a painting screaming at her and a vague impression of something bad having happened on a ship. Ethan, meanwhile, does the walk of shame home to Brona after his tryst with Dorian.  She apologizes to him for running off from their theater date, and he leaves out some key details of his evening before pledging his undying love to her. [...]

Penny Dreadful, Episode Five

Episode five of Penny Dreadful deviates from the format of the show to date, focusing solely on Vanessa as she composes a letter to the still missing Mina.  Her internal monologue is, as far as we can tell, the text of the letter, in which she tells Mina a whole bunch of things she already mostly knows. Even so, Vanessa writes in hopes that one day Mina will write back and things can be as they were. While Mina, upon receipt of this letter, might be bored, the audience learns all sorts of new things.  We discover that as children, Mina and Vanessa are best friends and neighbors.  Mina is the weaker of the pair – a word in this [...]

Penny Dreadful, Episode Four

We open on an Eyes Wide Shut-worthy party; it’s apparently Tuesday for Dorian Grey and he’s very bored watching lots of people of every gender and combination have a great deal of sex while he lounges about with a pretty man beside him and a woman at his feet.  After the party we see Dorian enter a secret hallway lined with mirrors before passing into the private chamber that contains his portrait.  We don’t see the painting, but it’s clearly the only thing capable of holding his attention. After Dorian’s orgy, it’s on to a church, where a little girl questions whether Vanessa about whether she likes churches and is intending to go inside.  After some small-talk in which Vanessa [...]

SALEM, Episode Six

We learn that Mary “still has love in her heart” for John. And according to elder witch Rose, he still loves her. This is apparently not good for the Grand Rite. Rose needs Mary’s heart to be completely devoid of love for the Grand Rite to work, and so she’s taken matters into her own hands. But Mary is one step ahead of her. Last episode, Rose fell through the trap at Alden’s house when she came for the artifact. Now, Alden and Cotton Mather are carrying Rose out to the woods to interrogate her before they kill her – before she can kill them. At the same time, Mary is busy with Mercy. She’s brought her to her home, [...]

Penny Dreadful, Episode Three

For the holiday weekend, Penny Dreadful gives us a massive info dump about life, death, love and responsibility. We open on young Victor’s discovery that death is not serene. In the face of the death of his dog.  His mother suggests that death is perhaps something else, a type of movement, and it is an ominous foreshadowing of both his passions and the fate of Proteus at the hands of The Creature.  Even so, it’s a sweet moment until she begins to cough blood all over him because everyone on this show has consumption.   She dies.  Victor begins his studies. The Creature also seeks to provide his origin story. He tells of being born in pain and terror.  When he [...]

TRUE TORI, Episode Five

There is a new wrinkle in the saga of Dean’s infidelity: He has been invited back to Canada – the scene of the “crime” – to host a second season of Chopped. Tori is in a bad position. If she lets him go, she will worry he will cheat on her again, and even if she doesn’t she will resent being left alone with the kids at the same time when her new ABC Family comedy, Mystery Girls, begins filming. If she forbids him to go, he will resent her. It is a classic lose-lose situation. The stress gets to her, and she ends up hospitalized for over a week with stomach pains and migraines. Dean is very attentive to [...]

SALEM, Episode Five

This week, John Alden is forced to reckon with his violent past, while Mary must deal with the monster she created in Mercy. We start when the head of the whore house walks into the forest to join a group of one-eyed crones. They have summoned John Hale to tell him that John Alden is distracting their “greatest creation” – Mary. And that Alden has just killed a man named Hook to protect his secret. They task Hale with finding out that secret — one that would alienate Mary — and use it to run Alden out of Salem. He says yeah, the problem is the one person who knew the secret is dead. The witches say there is one [...]

SALEM, Episode Four

John Alden is at the cemetery visiting the graves of his parents when he runs into Anne Hale. She tells him about her fever dream in which a doll came to life, and that it was so real she even had an image of her father coming in and removing the doll. Then, speak of the devil (yes, pun intended) Hale shows up and ushers his daughter along. Meanwhile, a priest is performing an exorcism on Mercy. He slices open her belly and a snake slithers out. Alden talks to Cotton Mather, telling him that he thinks Anne was the victim of a spell. “Has John Alden finally declared his belief in witches?” Alden replies that he’s seen too much [...]

Penny Dreadful, Series Premiere

Lots of heavy breathing noises and unseen evils make the opening sequence of Penny Dreadful – the murder of a mother and her young daughter — traditional startle horror, but everything that happens afterwards is a weirdly modern fusion of all the classics. Set in Victorian London in 1891, Penny Dreadful introduces us to Vanessa Ives (Eva Green), a reserved woman with a habit of summoning spiders and/or visions when she prays. Lightening the mood, at least initially, is Ethan Chandler (Josh Hartnett). Ethan is a gunslinger in every sense of the word, showing off his formidable shooting skills in his first scene before demonstrating his less metaphorical talents with some athletic sex up against the side of a circus [...]

SALEM, Episode Three

We open with Anne Hale having an erotic dream in bed with Reverend Cotton, John, and Mary. (Too bad it was just a short dream. It was kind of hot.) In the dream, Mary speaks the line she told Anne in the cemetery that first episode: “Love is to a woman what war is to a man.” (Cue Pat Benatar.) Isaac the Fornicator is wheeling Bridget Bishop’s body to the morgue. Towns people are weeping. Mary stands on the balcony and watches with Tituba. The implication is that more people are crying over her death than rejoicing that a witch has been killed. “Spectacle is fuel for our fire,” says Mary. Men loot the orphanage that Bridget had presided over, [...]

TRUE TORI, Episode Two Recap

Watching TRUE TORI is a litmus test for married couples. Who’s the bad guy, who’s at fault, what should the couple do next? I have to confess I’ve had a few disagreements (ahem, fights) with my husband over this reality show romance-on-the-brink. To recap: After seven years of marriage and four kids together, Dean cheated on Tori, and she kicked him out of the house AND as was revealed in a really uncomfortable way this episode, he went into treatment after becoming suicidal. Now he’s ready to come home. But is she ready and willing to take him back? Tori and Dean go to a therapy session with Dr. Wexler, Tori’s therapist whom she has been seeing since she was [...]

Reality Romance: TRUE TORI, Episode 1 Recap

Just before Christmas, US Weekly broke the story that Tori Spelling’s husband (and father of her four children), Dean McDermott, cheated on her with a twenty-something woman while he was away in Canada filming the TV show Chopped. Whatever has happened between the couple since then has been the source of constant tabloid speculation. I will happily admit that I’ve read all of Tori Spelling’s memoirs. All of them, starting with Stori Telling six years ago. Love them. The perfect guilty pleasure. And so yes, I feel invested in Tori and Dean, and their whole domestic set-up. So last night, I gave into another guilty…something. Not sure pleasure is the right word. But I watched TRUE TORI. The show is billed as [...]

SALEM, Series Premiere Recap

As hard as I tried to get into American Horror Story, I was never able to enjoy it. I liked the supernatural part of it, but it lacked the one element that hooks me into a show: a central love story. Not so with Salem. Within the first five minutes, we meet the star-crossed lovers: our hero, John Alden and the raven-haired, luminous town beauty, Mary. It’s 1685 in Salem, Massachusetts. John’s father was the first settler in Salem, and from the way John is acting, his father would not be happy with the violently harsh, punitive society that has evolved. We open with a couple in stocks in the town square, being whipped and branded for “fornication.” The leader [...]

Reality Romance: ERIC & JESSIE, GAME ON Episode Five

Sydney is heartbroken. Apparently, things are cooling off with her new boyfriend, Zach. She bursts into tears and Jessie consoles her. Sydney says that he’s just sending her “token” text messages and she’d rather he just not text her at all. “He’s not the one,” Jessie tells her. “It just hurts,” says Sydney. Jessie says that even though she’s young, she knows what she wants. “You want to get married young, you want to have babies young, kind of like Momma did. And bake pies and take care of your family. That’s what’s important to you.” Jessie tells her that she has so much to offer and she can do better than Zach.  She tells the camera, “She’s twenty-two years [...]

The Real Housewives of New York, Episode Six Recap

The animosity between Heather and Aviva sets in even deeper, despite Ramona’s best efforts to play peacemaker. We open with some of the housewives at the Karen Karch jewelry store in Gramercy. It’s a fundraising event for Heather’s foundation (her son Jax had a liver transplant) The Kellner Family Pediatric Liver Foundation. Ramona is back from her trip to Africa, and is not happy to hear about the fight between Heather and Aviva. She’s especially not happy to hear that Heather is uninviting Aviva to her tenth anniversary party. She tells the camera, “Heather has a history of not inviting people to places and events.” We see from flashbacks that Ramona has been on the bad end of this. “It’s [...]

Reality Romance: Eric and Jessie, Episode Three Recap

It’s Super Bowl week, and Jessie is primping and prepping for her man’s big day. Jessie, her mom, and Sydney are getting manicures (in blue and orange, Denver Broncos colors). Jessie is also getting Eric’s number, 87, painted on her nails, and asks her mom “Do you want number 18 — for your hall pass?” Jessie says she knows “Peyton [Manning] is your hall pass.” Her mom, Karen, says “That’s secret information.” Jessie: You said you like the way he takes charge on the field. Karen: I’m feeling very hot right now. Jessie: My hall pass is Ryan Gosling. Next, it’s on to New York, where Eric’s team will be playing against the Seattle Seahawks (in New Jersey). Jessie is [...]