1. Catching Fire
My expectations were low, even though I enjoyed the first film (despite a few issues), and loved the first book. This movie took me by surprise, took the wind out of me, had me in tears, had me jumping out of my seat, had me laughing, and had me cheering and clapping, and feeling very impatient for the next film. This is one of the best sequels I have ever seen (as one reviewer described, Catching Fire is this era’s Empire Strikes Back).
This came on the radio the other night and the song, this song, got so deep under my skin that I had to pull over to the side of the road in order to catch my breath and clear my eyes. Such a gorgeously, heartbreaking song, and a notable departure for Christina, a more raw quality, intimate and vulnerable and somewhat restrained, which makes it all the more moving. I cannot listen to this song without tears coming.
3. The Governor (a.k.a. Philip Blake, a.k.a. Brian Blake)
Between the last episode of The Walking Dead, and the new book The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor, I find myself actually caring about a character that I truly despised last season. I love when good writing can do that (along with good acting), flip a character around to show you some hidden parts of who they are that make you think twice. I am also a sucker for a good redemption story, sustaining my belief that every day is another day to change (if you want to).
4. When You Were Young (live) :: The Noisettes
I love a good cover song. I also love a gender swapped cover song (something I love to do in karaoke, actually). This is such a unique take on The Killers’ song, it has this lilt and melodic magic to it that is feel good feeling and less melancholic than the original, which works as both a companion peace, and an opposite view.
5. Tom Hiddleston
He had me at Loki, a favorite character in so many incarnations, and one I am loving in the Marvel/Tom Hiddelston/Thor franchise. He played F. Scott Fitzgerald, too, and has a love of theater, and seems refreshingly happy in being an actor, and playing a now beloved role. Listening to his interview with Chris Hardwick on my commute this week I found out that he also has a social conscious that he does something about, is witty and kind and intelligent, and sings, too (oh, and he is quite easy on the eyes).
6. The Nerdist Podcasts with Chris Hardwick
And, speaking of Chris Hardwick and the Nerdist Podcast, this is one of the things that have been helping me survive my terrible commute. Podcasts are a new obsession of mine, and The Nerdist series is one of my absolute favorites. I also love Chris on The Talking Dead.
7. Wlodzimierz Kuklinski
The art by Wlodzimierz Kuklinski has been haunting me, and inspiring me, this week as I keep on keeping on with the novel-in-progress. There is a desolation, a desperation and a sense of mystery in his subjects, and I get lost in them, spinning around in the paintings and pulling out my own stories from them. I’ve been putting together playlists that go along with some of the paintings, as well.
8. Luka :: The Lemonheads
Another gender swap cover song, which seems to have become a theme for me this week. I am still on an Evan Dando/Lemonheads kick, so it seems. I love how 90’s this feels.
9. The Conjuring
We have been too busy lately to have our Saturday night horror double-features, which I have been missing a great deal. So, I re-watched The Conjuring over two lunch breaks at work. This is definitely in my Top Horror Movies list, especially because of Vera Farmiga and Lili Taylor.
10. Almost Human
I am a sucker for a well-told, ensemble cast, Sci-Fi/Fantasy story, as well as having a significant soft spot for J.J. Abrams creations, so I had to tune in to the two-night premiere of Almost Human (oh, and for Lili Taylor, too). It reminds me of Fringe meets Blade Runner, and I find myself already caring about four of the characters, and I have already found myself mulling over theories (a much better reaction then I had with S.H.I.E.L.D.). I look forward to this story unfolding.