It’s the start of a new year which seems like a great time to do a TV list re-boot for TV Tuesday, starting with Lyriquediscorde’s Top Ten Male TV Characters. Though some characters seem laminated in their top spots (i.e. James “Sawyer” Ford), there are some shifts in the list, and a few additions, from the last time I put together a list like this.
Ten was a hard number to narrow down to, thus there are a few well-deserved honorable mentions that were hard to x off the list. Next time around I may need to expand this to Top Twenty. But, for now, I’ll keep to the Top Ten parameters and bring you the 2019 updated Top Ten Male TV Characters list. Let me know in the comments who would be on yours.
Warning – there may be spoilers below. Read on at your own discretion.
Top Ten Male TV Characters
1. James “Sawyer” Ford (Josh Holloway)
from the TV Series Lost (2004-2010)
I’m pretty sure Sawyer will always be my number one male TV character. His spot laminated for always. He stole my heart completely, though honestly, it was never much of a shock to anyone who knew me as he reminds me so much of one of my first fictional/on-screen loves, Han Solo. He’s sarcastic, witty, a “scoundrel”, but he also possesses a well of emotions, heartbreak, pain, and a need to love and be loved. His character grows exponentially through a tremendous story arc, which crosses time and realities. He finds a light through his journey and overcomes (for the most part) the pain of his past while surviving. I always hoped his “happy ending” by the vending machine was a real one.
2. Crosby Braverman (Dax Shepard)
from the TV Series Parenthood (2010-2015)
It was during a re-watch of Parenthood earlier this year that reminded me of how much I love the character of Crosby. The youngest in the family, he is almost always underestimated and seen as immature and selfish. That said, in many ways, Crosby was the heart of the Braverman family, and the show itself. He’s the most realistic, hopeful and loving, but full of flaws. He makes mistakes but always takes responsibility for them, even if there are high personal costs. He has the biggest growth in his story arc, and not only follows his own dream of owning the music studio, The Luncheonette, but helps his sibling, and later his niece, follow theirs. His one-on-one moments with his brother and sisters, nieces and nephew, and son are some of my all-time favorites in the series. I often wonder what happened to him next.
3. Stephen Holder (Joel Kinnaman)
from the TV Series The Killing (2011-2014)
Oh my stars, Holder is so broken, and so often self-destructive, that I found myself often watching him while holding my breath, and half-covering my eyes. That said, he is also so strong, with a huge heart. He’s beyond complicated, yet also so much exactly what he shows he is – loyal, emotional, rash, raw, real, smart, and sarcastic. He wears his heart so out in the open that it hurts to watch, but it is something I related to, as well, and always hoped for the best for him because of it. I’m going to hope that Linden and Holder are partners still, solving cases and maybe each other, too.
4. Special Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle McLachlan)
from the TV Series, Twin Peaks (1990-1991, 2017)
“Harry, I’m going to let you in on a little secret: every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it; don’t wait for it; just let it happen. It could be a new shirt in a men’s store, a catnap in your office chair, or two cups of good, hot, black, coffee.” That quote is one of the reasons I love Special Agent Cooper. I love the way he sees the world, the vulnerability, the courage, the curiosity, the wit and wisdom, and his complexities – he makes me smile. His character, in many ways, is us – the viewer – a stranger to the town, to the complexities and supernatural aspects, to the darkness, and the light. We enter the town, and the world, of Twin Peaks with him, enjoying the coffee and pie, his tapes to Diane, and feel his pains and joys, too. We enter the black lodge, too. He takes us all on quite a journey. Thankfully there’s coffee along the way.
5. Nate Fisher (Peter Krause)
from the TV Series Six Feet Under (2001-2005)
The character I most relate to on one of my all-time favorite TV shows, Six Feet Under, is Nate Fisher. Especially in the way he feels about his family, the push and pulls in all of it, the wanting to escape versus the wanting back in/being pulled back in. His inner turmoil, vulnerabilities, and missteps always get to me. The way he loved does, too. His character’s death was very hard on me, and even in the glorious finale (best TV finale ever, in my opinion), his presence “after death” still breaks me.
6. Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles)
from the TV Series Supernatural (2005-current)
Flawed, loyal, loving, broken, sarcastic, pop-culture infused wit, trust-issues, persistent and a survivor, Dean has always been the Winchester that has my heart. He has so much pain inside of him, yet he keeps fighting, cherishing family and those he loves, despite his pessimism and a seemingly endless series of tragedies. He can make me both cry and laugh, sometimes within the same episode. Sometimes at the same time. Oh, and he carries around a shoebox of cassettes in “Baby” (his car).
7. Spike (James Marsters)
from the TV Series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1996-2003)
Heroic and brave with a huge heart. An anti-hero who starts as a villain, but ends up making a huge, ultimate sacrifice, loves big and is often misunderstood. He’s dark and complicated, flawed, funny and intuitive – especially when it comes to Buffy. Both with and without his soul, he still loves big, is loyal and has a fragility about him under all the sarcasm and fierceness, that is always so very human, to me. Bonus points that he’s a vampire, a supernatural “character” genre that I’ve been obsessed with since I was four or five years old. Spike is definitely one of my favorite vampires.
8. The Tenth Doctor (David Tennant)
from the TV Series Doctor Who (1963-1989, 2005-current)
They say that your first doctor is always your favorite, but for me, it was my second (and the series Tenth Doctor) that stole my heart. Though I do love Nine, it is David Tennant’s Ten that captured everything I’d come to love about the series. The anti-hero, the saver of words, the knower of everything and maybe nothing, the tragedy and romance of it all, the unrequited love between him and Rose (which still kills me), his humor and childlike nature that runs in correlation with the weight of his wisdom and sadness.
9. Shane Walsh (Jon Bernthal)
from the TV Series The Walking Dead (2010-current)
I might get kicked out of most Walking Dead conversations for my polarizing view here, but I do love the character of Shane Walsh. At least the television version. He is complex, troubled, loyal, haunted, torn, sometimes misguided, but ultimately a survivor. He does everything from a place of loyalty and protection of the few people he loves in the world. Yes, he is dark and more an anti-hero than hero, but he isn’t a villain, at least not in this reality. And anyway, all the things he did that could be characterized as villainous have now been done by Rick in the hero role. I would have really liked to see where his character would be now had he survived. I think everyone’s reality would be a lot different if he was still alive.
10. Lincoln Lee (Seth Gabel)
from the TV Series, Fringe (2008-2013)
Both reality Lincoln Lee’s are favorites of mine, both of their stories, their hearts, their strengths, their vulnerabilities. He is the relatable lens to look through at first (on the main reality), resistant, fearful, but courageous and curious, too. His feelings and friendship with both Olivia always get to me, too.
So, there you have it. The updated Lyriquediscorde Top Ten Male TV Characters list.
Runners-up/honorable mentions go out to Chandler Bing (Friends), Mark Sloane (Grey’s Anatomy), Jack Pearson (This Is Us), Jess Mariano (Gilmore Girls), Christopher Hayden (Gilmore Girls), Eric Northman (True Blood), Jim Halpert (The Office), Seth Cohen (The OC), Don Draper (Mad Men), and Jim Hopper (Stranger Things).
Check out some moments with each of the Top Ten Male TV Characters via YouTube:
Top Ten Male TV Characters
Happy 21st Birthday to “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, the epic TV Series created by Joss Whedon. In celebration of Buffy Summers and the “Scooby Gang” Soundtrack Saturdays is taking a moment to appreciate the TV Soundtrack, Buffy the Vampire Slayer – The Album. The Soundtrack Album is full of 90’s goodness, featuring Songs by Nerf Herder, Guided By Voices, Garbage, Bif Naked, K’s Choice, The Sundays, and others.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Album (1999)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Album was the first Soundtrack Album released from the TV Series. The Album was released in 1999, and includes Music featured in the first four seasons of the TV Series, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”.
I had this on CD, and played it often, lifting some of my Favorite Tracks to add to Mixes I made. My Favorite from the Album was K’s Choice, a band I discovered because of the Series. There were other Artists I discovered from this Soundtrack compilation, including Rasputina, Bif Naked, Kim Ferron, and Four Star Mary.
The Series, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” was a Favorite of mine. A Must-See while it was on-air. I’m always a fan of a Strong Female Lead, and Buffy was definitely that. There were other strong, badass characters in it, as well. Willow, Faith, Drusilla, Cordelia, Anya, Tara, Joyce, and Dawn…to name a few. The Series even started with a twist on the “blonde victim” trope, when the “blonde” (Darla, another strong female character) turned out to be the villain and not the victim. The Series tackled many themes and issues and broke boundaries in many ways. It also celebrated friendship that became a “chosen family” in a way that is sometimes rare on TV and is something that always appeals to me in a big way. “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” will always be on my list of all-time Favorite TV.
And the Music, it complemented the Series without overtaking it. The 90’s started a trend in Television (especially in what might be labeled “Teen Television”) where the Music often overwhelmed the scenes. Some of this was due to the popularity of Soundtrack Albums, as well as the partnering up and cross-promotions of Musical artists, something that continues today. This wasn’t the case with “Buffy” though. The Songs used, whether as Soundtrack or played live at The Bronze, never upstaged the story or action.
Speaking of The Bronze, the Series had its own Music Venue, something a few other shows have had as well, but never quite to the level of The Bronze, in my opinion. Though I may have questioned this cool, underground club being in the small town of Sunnydale, I suspended my disbelief because a) Sunnydale is located atop the Hellmouth, and what “Hellmouth” wouldn’t have a way cool club, and b) because I loved it too much to question it. I mean, wouldn’t you like to go and visit The Bronze this Saturday night?
Though there are two Songs I wished had been included, “Fade Into You” by Mazzy Star and “Full of Grace” by Sarah McLachlan, I still have so much love for this TV Soundtrack.
Do you remember Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Album? Did you have a copy? What were your Favorites on it?
Here are my Top 5 Favorites:
Top 5 Songs from Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Album
1. “Virgin State of Mind” by K’s Choice
2. “Temptation Waits” by Garbage
3. “Wild Horses” by The Sundays
4. “Lucky” by Bif Naked
5. “Buffy the Vampire Slayer Theme” by Nerf Herder
Here we are again. Top Ten Tuesday with another Top Ten Song List, by request. This time its Led Zeppelin getting some Top Ten attention thanks to Jackie’s request. Led Zeppelin has always been one of these Bands on my Music outskirts. They are this huge Rock Band with this huge Rock presence, and I know so many of their Songs, but it wasn’t until I sat down today and started going through them that I realized how many Songs I knew, and loved. Music is ever a surprise to me – in a good way.
When I started picking out Tracks for My Top Ten I started to realize that most of my Favorites have a Film or TV connection. And, most of those “connections” are due to Cameron Crowe. Its no big shock to anyone who knows me that I love Cameron Crowe Movies (and TV) and that I adore how he incorporates Music. His Movies get me in ways few others do, and I get them deeply. Recently, it was his all too short-lived TV Series, Roadies, that I fell hard for. So much of the Music from that show made its way into Playlists and Obsessive Plays by me. Another case of Crowe’s Music influence through film, on the Big Screen, and Small.
There are definitely Crowe influenced Zepplin Songs in this list.
Another gateway to Led Zeppelin is Tori Amos. My first Tori was the Single/EP for “Crucify” which included Covers of Nirvana, The Rolling Stones, and Led Zeppelin. I love all three of the Covers so much. Her version of Zeppelin’s “Thank You” is one of my Favorite Tori Covers, and has made itself on many a Mix, especially ones made for past lovers.
There was also an older brother of a good friend of mine, back when I was in that pre-adolescence to adolescence era. I’d say it was an influential time for me with Music, but there’s honestly never been a time that wasn’t. This older brother though, he was in high school already, a few years ahead of us. He played guitar and smoked a lot of weed.
He had beautiful hair that looked soft to touch, and sometimes he let his sister, my friend, put eyeliner on him. He was in a band and they used to practice in their garage. Every so often we got to watch. She and I would sit on this over-sized couch that smelled like musty laundry, incense, and pot. They would sometimes try to play Zeppelin Songs. They were not good, but I imagined sometimes they were.
What are your Favorite Led Zeppelin Songs? Here’s mine:
Top Ten Led Zeppelin Songs
Top Ten Tuesday
from the Album, Led Zeppelin III (1970)
2. “Going to California”
from the Album, Led Zeppelin IV (1971)
3. “Thank You”
from the Album, Led Zeppelin II (1969)
4. “The Rain Song”
from the Album, Houses of the Holy (1973)
5. “That’s the Way”
from the Album, Led Zeppelin III
6. “Your Time Is Gonna Come”
from the Album, Led Zeppelin (1969)
7. “Ten Years Gone”
from the Album, Physical Graffiti (1975)
8. “Ramble On”
from the Album, Led Zeppelin II (1969)
9. “Misty Mountain Hop”
from the Album, Led Zeppelin IV (1971)
10. “The Ocean”
from the Album, Houses of the Holy (1973)
“Portions for Foxes” is Track 3 off of Rilo Kiley’s 2004 Album, More Adventurous. I thought at first that this was the first Rilo Song I ever heard, but “It’s a Hit” actually is. That said, this was the second, and it was what led me to start getting into Jenny Lewis and Rilo Kiley, both big favorites of mine.
“Portions for Foxes” by Rilo Kiley
from the Album, More Adventurous (2004)
I’ve been slow-binging “Grey’s Anatomy” (currently on Season 9), and listening to a podcast called “The On-Call Room”. There have been discussions about the episodes all being Song Titles, and the Music in the episodes tend to be iconic, in the way that soundtracks to “The OC” were. I decided to put together Playlists by season, with the episode title Songs and the Songs in the episodes.
(If you are interested, I just completed Season 1 – available here on Spotify)
There are a few Songs that immediately come to mind when I think of Grey’s, and “Portions for Foxes” is definitely one of them. In some ways, it is definitive of Meredith Grey, at least when we meet her/her perception of herself.
I never realized that the title “Portions for Foxes” is a biblical reference. Psalm 63:10, to be exact.
” They shall fall by the sword: they shall be a portion for foxes.”
I did wonder what it meant, but I kind of liked the oddness of it. Also, foxes being small animals, to be portions for them I felt it referred to being/feeling broken in so many small pieces and needing someone, or something to help put the pieces back together.
What did you think it meant? Did you know it was a bible-reference?
“Portions for Foxes” (live) by Rilo Kiley
(side note: Can I please have Jenny’s outfit from this live performance? I sorta already have the hair)
The first month of 2018 has gone by. It flew by quickly, perhaps a little too much so. But, there is a good reason for that as it was a month of Bliss, of Love celebrations, of Music, Movies Books, and times spent with family, friends, and the man I love. Oh, and four mischievous cats. This year one of my “resolutions” was to keep track of things I enjoyed a bit more, chronicling the Music, Art, Books, Films, TV, and Adventures I experience. And, because I love lists, it will be done as a Top 10. So, here’s to first months and new resolutions, and here’s to January 2018. Thanks for being a good one.
Lyriquediscorde January 2018
My Top 10
1. The Jam
Paul Weller became a big thing to me last year as I delve deep into his Music as I was falling in love with my boyfriend. Though I indulged in all of Weller’s endeavors, it was mostly his Solo work that I got into. This past January (and into February, honestly) I started to really dig into The Jam, Album-by-Album, and their Songs became part of my daily life, and many a “Top 5 Obsessions” Playlist. My most played Jam Songs in January? “Art School”, “Butterfly Collector”, “Private Hell”, “Pretty Green”, and “Down In the Tube Station at Midnight”.
“Pretty Green” (live) by The Jam
2. “San Junipero”
I think I watched “San Junipero” 3 times in a row the first time, and then a few more times after. It’s difficult to sufficiently explain how this episode of “Black Mirror” affected me. It’s impact felt visceral, deep within, emotional, and even a bit life-altering. I had a dozen questions (still do), and it kept swirling around in my head for days and days after (still comes back every so often). There was something about it that made me believe in an “after”, even if it is one by design, or maybe especially if it is. It also made me feel understood, especially in the way I love. I may need to watch it again tonight, after writing this I’m itching to see Yorkie and Kelly again. I can hear “Heaven On Earth” in my head, can you?
3. We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
Besides being one of the most gorgeous book covers I’ve ever seen, We Are Okay was truly an amazing read, one that was the best choice for a “first book of the year”. Here’s a snippet from the review I wrote of it:
Nina LaCour has a way with words, with details, with raw emotions, and with characters who open up slowly, realistically, and in the end, beautifully. I rooted for Marin the entire time, as well as I did for Mabel and Javier and Ana, and even Gramps. I wanted to know what happens next, at school, in Marin’s life, in all of their stories.
When I got to the last page, I had tears in my eyes, a smile on my face, and a wanting for more. That’s a pretty good way to feel when you end a book, don’t you think?
4. The Shape of Water
Oh, my stars – The Shape of Water was remarkable. I thought I’d love it, as Guillermo del Toro Films are some of my favorites, but I didn’t know it would move me the way that it did, nor did I expect that the characters and performances would be so outstanding. Here’s a snippet of my review:
I love that the misfits are the heroes, have the most heart and humanity, and love big. And that they become family to each other.
I adore Antonia Thomas, have since “Misfits”, another show I loved. I also adore well-done stories about friends/”chosen family” that is unconventional, and real. This is everything I could want in a twenty-something/quarter-life-crisis/coming-of-age/rom-com/dramedy, and more. One episode in and I already cared about Dylan, Evie, and Luke. I even grew to care about Angus. Oh, and the Music is outstanding.
Season 1 and 2 I binged through in January, so I still have 3 to enjoy in February. I’ll miss them when its over – hoping there will be a Season 4.
“Lovesick” is available to Stream on Netflix. I highly recommend it – ultimate binge-worthy goodness.
6. Jane Birkin
Jane’s been a Favorite of mine for a long time, but it’s only recently (this past January) that I started to really love her style. She’s become a style-inspiration/icon to me. I’ve also been going mad for all things 60’s as of late, so she fits right into that Obsession. I’d love to learn more about her life. I plan on doing a search for any biographies on her.
This weekend I watched a Film she was in (“Blow Up” – stay tuned for a review sometime next week) and was excited when I realized it was her. It was a small part, and she was quite young. I’d like to see any other Films she was in, too.
7. Juliana Hatfield and Olivia Newton-John
Though the Album is not out until April (soooo long to wait!), the first Single (“A Little More Love” came out in January, and I pre-ordered the Album in January, too. Olivia was my Idol growing up, and I’ve loved Juliana since the 90’s. This project makes me so happy that I actually jumped up and squealed when I first heard about it. I’m counting the days for its release! Here’s a snippet of a small piece I did when the Single came out, and the Album was announced:
When I was a young girl one of my favorite Artists, and Idols, was Olivia Newton-John. I’ve written a lot about her at various times and places. I had (still have) all of Olivia’s 70’s and 80’s Albums on Vinyl, including the Soundtracks. And yes, I do still play them. Maybe not as much as I did when I was a pre-adolescent and wanted to be her, but her Songs still make it into Playlists, and I do still give the Albums a spin sometimes.
In the 90’s I discovered Juliana Hatfield, round about the time she was in the Juliana Hatfield Three. “My Sister” was the first Song I heard, and I was hooked on her voice and her Music ever since. I have most of her Music, be it Solo, or with Blake Babies or The Lemonheads, on CD or Vinyl, and I definitely include Juliana in a lot of Playlists. Lyriquediscorde used to also do a monthly Feature showcasing Evan Dando and Juliana Hatfield (Evan and Juliana Days).
Pre-order the Album here.
“A Little More Love” by Juliana Hatfield
8. Domenico’s, Belmont Shore
My Favorite Italian restaurant is also one of the first restaurants to serve pizza in California. Opened in 1954, by Domenico and Beverly Spano, it has been in the Belmont Shore area since. My boyfriend and I discovered it last year when we were looking for an Italian restaurant that felt authentic, had that classic atmosphere, and good food. We found everything, and more, at Domenico’s (the food isn’t good, its great). Now the place has become one of “our places”. We went again the last week of January, right around our year together anniversary. It was wonderful.
A tip if you want to visit Domenico’s. If you go for lunch they give you complimentary soup with your meal. The tomato bisque is incredible.
9. Fiona Apple When the Pawn
Rediscovering some of my CD’s from the 90’s during my to-and-from work commute. Fiona Apple’s Second Studio Album, When the Pawn got heavy-rotation in January. Though Tidal has always been my go-to “Fiona-Favorite” When the Pawn is a close second and may be edging its way to first now that I’ve come back to it.
Maybe its because I’m older. Maybe it’s me looking back. I don’t know for certain. But, I do know that these Songs hit harder and deeper than ever before.
My Favorite Songs from this revisit? “Paper Bag”, “Love Ridden”, “Get Gone”, and “I Know”.
“I Know” by Fiona Apple
10. The Incredible Jessica James
Netflix is one of my favorite things if you can’t tell. Two of my January Top 10’s are from the network – “Lovesick”, and this – The Incredible Jessica James. This was the first Movie I watched in January, and I enjoyed it a lot. Here’s a snippet of a review I did of it:
Indie, unconventional “Rom-Coms” are a favorite of mine. Beyond the “Rom” in the “Com” (or Dramedy, which this seems more like), I love when the story goes beyond a romance, and also has a strong story arc for the main character/characters, and also showcases other relationships in the lead(s) life. A good Soundtrack does it for me, too. All of this and more were part of the Netflix Original Movie, The Incredible Jessica James.
So, there it is, My Top 10 for January 2018.
There are a few honorable mention – “Grey’s Anatomy” (starting watching from S1 in October, and hit S9 in January), Big Thief (especially the Song “Shark Smile”), the new Black Rebel Motorcycle Club Album (Wrong Creatures), Baby Driver, the Podcasts “Levar Burton Reads” and “Required Reading with Tom and Stella”, Ginger Tumeric Tea and Cheddar/Caramel Popcorn Mix (both from Trader Joe).
I’d love to hear some of your January loves. Share in the comments below.
Netflix’s “Girlboss” :: Episode 1 & 2 :: TV Tuesday
Netflix’s New Original Series “Girlboss” is Up and Ready to Binge. It is the female led story about Sophia, a twenty-something in the early Aughts who has not quite figured out how to adult. The story is an adaptation of the book by the same name, and is disclaimed at the start at being a loose telling of real life events. It is set in New York, and is definitely more “Broad City” than “Girls”, though this is different than either.
I tuned in because I tend to enjoy Netflix Shows. I also am a fan of female led stories. Oh, and I’ve always been a fan of Britt Robertson. I have the book on my shelf, a gift from a good friend for my birthday last year, but I’ve yet to read it. I think I’m going to wait to dig in to it until after I finish the Series.
My first thoughts?
- I Love the Music. I Love it enough that I had to keep hitting pause to look up what was playing and write it down for later listening.
- Sophia reminds me of a early Aughts Lelaina Pierce (Reality Bites).
- The pace of the first two episodes feels more like a movie to me. I’m not sure if this will change as the story unfolds.
- I kept thinking it was set in the 90’s, no the early Aughts. Not that that’s a bad thing.
- I want more of Sophia and Annie’s friendship.
- Definitely binge worthy.
Now how about some of that Music?
Best from Episode 1:
“The Wild One” :: Suzi Quatro
“Rebel Girl” :: Bikini Kill
“The Magic Touch” :: Melba Moore
Best from Episode 2:
“Get It Poppin'” :: Fat Joe, Featuring Nelly
“Sensation Boulevard” :: T. Rex
“Teenage Dirtbag” :: Wheatus
Happy Fantastic Five Songs Friday, the First Friday of April, full of some Fabulous Musical Gems in this edition of My Top 5 Music Obsessions of the Day. Let’s start off with a Cool New Track from New Order’s Remix EP, shall we? Then on to a new discovery of mine, with Snowmine’s “Let Me In” – a Song I stumbled on yesterday, and have been Pressing Play quite a bit ever since. Karen Elson (pictured above) has a New Album out today and this Track is a Stunner. It reminded me of the Dum Dum Girls, so I had to spin a Track of theirs next. Then on to a song from the Chromatics that is featured on the new Netflix series, 13 Reasons Why – which takes us to the end of this Friday’s Top 5 Music Obsessions. I’d Love to hear what you are listening to today. Drop a line below in the comments and share what your Top 5 is right now.
You can click to listen to each video below, or choose the Spotify or YouTube link to listen to the My Top 5 Song Obsessions of the Day :: Top Five playlist. I add each five songs shared to both playlists each day, so they expand as the week unfolds.
My Top 5 Music Obsessions of the Day:
1. “The Game” (Mark Reeder Spielt Mit Version) :: New Order
“In this empty space,
in which we live,
we will not bend,
we will not give.
We’re waging war,
while raising kids.”
This New EP by New Order is Epic. Every song is a Must-Hear. I will be writing more about the EP in my New Release Post, but for now let’s have a listen to Track 2. This hits with a lyrical impact while being so beautifully mixed and arranged. I can’t wait to see them play later this month.
2. “Let Me In” ::Snowmine
“If you could,
you keep it together,
for a moment in time,
Then you’d see that I’d be,
your excuse for a lover,
your own mountain to climb.
You would see.”
Not a new song, but new to me. Sometimes I pick a song on YouTube, or Pandora, and just let it play from there. Yesterday I started with a Track from Cigarettes After Sex and I let it run from there. This song came on after about an hour in and it stopped me from a project I was working on, grabbing my attention. I Pressed Play again, and again, and again. I love when Music does that to me.
“Why am I waiting?
Why am I waiting now?
Waiting for the stars to fall.
Waiting for my bridges to burn.”
This Track is my Favorite from the New Album, but it’s not available on YouTube yet (if embedded link does not work click on the name of the song/artist above). Check in later today for more about Karen’s New Album, Double Roses, it is definitely one of the Top 5 New Releases of the day. First listen – Stevie Nicks meets Dum Dum Girls, and then some.
4. “Coming Down” :: Dum Dum Girls
“I take as much as I can get.
I don’t take any regret.”
My first thought when spinning Karen Elson’s Track above was that it reminded me of the Dum Dum Girls, so naturally I had to go seek out one of their songs. This is one of their Best Songs – definitely one of my Favorites.
5. “Into the Black” :: Chromatics
Rock and Roll is here to stay.
It’s better to burn out,
than to fade away.”
I don’t know if you’ve checked out Netflix’s new original series, 13 Reasons Why, but if you have one of the things you may have noticed is the Brilliant Music choices they’ve made within the show. In another life I would have the job of putting together Music for shows and films, a day job of playlists sounds like a dream – doesn’t it?
Cheers to a Happy Friday and to all the Best Music that goes with it. Turn up the volume and take it all in, and never stop being obsessed with Music. Enjoy!
Winona Ryder :: Top 10 Tuesday
10. Mina Murray/Elisabeta
Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)
Dinner with Dracula
Edward Scissorhands (1990)
Veronica and JD meet
6. Joyce Byers
Stranger Things (2016)
Joyce and Jonathan
Girl, Interrupted (1999)
Borderline personality disorder
4. Charlotte Flax
My life, my way
3. Jo March
Little Women (1994)
2. Lydia Deetz
Strange and unusual
1. Lelaina Pierce
Reality Bites (1994)
You and me and five bucks
My Weekly Top 10 :: Week of August 29, 2016
To be honest, the show had me at the initial trailer and early marketing, I mean Cameron Crowe gets me in a very personal way, especially when his storytelling incorporates music (like Almost Famous, and now Roadies), and then Winnie Holzman, too, the woman responsible for my second favorite television series of all time, the short-lived My So-Called Life, oh, and J.J. Abrams, too – I was destined to fall hard for the show. All that said, I ended up falling harder than I expected, and wound up at the end of this first season (please renew, Showtime) caring about everyone of the regular characters on the show, and even some of the one-episode guests – oh ,and the music, I discovered some new favorites along the way, and enjoyed many already-favorites. My favorites on the show – Bill and Shelli (relate to both of them so much), Christopher House and Milo – but really, I loved everyone – Staten House Band forever.
One of the bands I discovered thanks to Roadies is Lucius. Though I’d heard their music before, it had been on the peripheral, or in the background, but after when they guest starred, and performed, on Roadies I really heard them for the first time. I can’t seem to get enough of their music lately, and have found myself devouring their albums; “Dusty Trails” is my current favorite, that song just digs in under my skin and stays.
Dusty Trails (live) :: Lucius
3. Road Regrets :: Dan Mangan
“And Robbie likes his country tunes,
it’s never been the lens that I see through,
but I guess driving for a week or two,
puts words in your mouth
So find dodge,
and then get out of it,
it’s about as country as I get,
so you ain’t living ’til you’re living it –
not dead ’til you die.”
Sometimes I hear a song that I feel so deeply, so internally, a song I relate to so much that I wish I’d written it. From the “on the road” element (girls with gypsy souls really get what a road regret is), to the music tie in (“so find dodge and then get out of it”), to the notion of escaping, and living, and dying – all of it, I just feel so fucking much. And, I can’t stop listening to this song right now.
4. “Remy” Playlist
I’ve been back to working on my vampire/post-apocalyptic/speculative fiction novel (and will be using an excerpt for my final creative piece in the horror/speculative fiction class I am taking), Inbetween Days (working title), and have been listening to the playlist I made for the lead character/reluctant hero, Remy, while I’ve been writing. Music is forever my muse, and this playlist, with 97 Remy-centric songs, is really doing it for me.
5. Black Mirror
“Be Right Back”
Season 2: Episode 1
“Be Right Back” is my favorite of the Black Mirror series, and this past Tuesday, in my American Horror Story and Speculative Fiction class, we watched the episode. Though I’d remembered Gleeson vividly, I’d forgotten that Hayley Atwell was in it, too. This one hit so much harder than the first time I saw it, and the tears fell more than once as the episode played, which is probably part to do with my current emotional state, and the way loss and death and grief and love have been top of mind for me, especially when trying to sort out how to deal with the memory of someone I love who is not of this earth any more – irregardless of the way the episode stung this time, it still is my favorite.
6. Paper Girls
My most recent favorite comic series, quite possibly my most favorite of all-time, Paper Girls presents a story with teenage female heroes out saving the world, on bikes, the bikes they usually use for their paper route. The series starts in the 80’s, and has that real 80’s immersive feeling that “Stranger Things” has, along with a bit of that friends against the world (think Goonies and Stand By Me and ET). There is a time travel element happening, too, which makes me love it even more – I really recommend series, Brian K. Vaughan is brilliant.
7. Kelly Vivanco’s art
Music has always been a muse to my writing, a given perhaps considering how much music means to me, but it isn’t music alone that motivates and triggers plot bunnies and imaginative crafting, visual art has always held a significant key in helping to unlock story in me. Kelly Vivanco’s art has been, and still is, one of my writing muses – so many poems and stories and characters have been inspired by her paintings, as well as a ton of personal reflection. This one above (“Moorings”) is one of my all-time favorites, and always brings to mind the journey of self, and the realization that there are multiple selves within us, and that sometimes it takes a journey to make peace with our varying sides, and sometimes they need to work together to get to where you are trying to go – at least that’s what it sparks in me.
8. Issac Gracie
Terrified (live):: Issac Gracie
Issac Gracie showed up on my Spotify Monday Discovery playlist and I was drawn in, and blown away, immediately. His voice reminds me of the first time I heard Jeff Buckley sing, and his lyrics cut me like Elliott Smith did. I am terribly sad that I missed him by like one week when he was at the Hotel Cafe (discovered him the week after, I won’t miss him again). He is definitely one to watch, and listen to (side note: one of his songs was used in an episode of Roadies).
Last Words (live) :: Issac Gracie
9. Now, Voyager (1942)
I’ve been on a Bette Davis kick as of late, and was happy to see Now, Voyager featured on a recent Bette Davis day on TCM. This one was always my favorite, and still remains top of my Bette Davis film list. Not ever part of the story holds up, but the emotional heft, the connections, the self esteem struggles, and the tragic love story still slay me (oh, and that double cigarette lighting thing, too…*sigh*).
10. “Kia and Gio” by Daniel José Older
I’ve had the opportunity to read so many fantastic horror and speculative fiction stories during this summer quarter, in the American Horror Story literature class I have been a part of. One of my favorites we read was the short story, “Kia and Gio”, written by Daniel José Older, who also spoke to our class via Skype about diversity in the genre of horror/speculative fiction/science fiction and also about the writing world, and his life as a writer. I want to know so much more about Kia and Gio (Kia especially) and what happens next in that magical botánica.
You can read the story for yourself here.
Stranger Things (2016)
Created by The Duffer Brothers
I fell hard and fast for the Netflix Original Series, “Stranger Things”, and broke my anti-binge policy to binge the hell out of it. I just couldn’t help myself. It was a near perfect show, to me, and I have yet to be able to shake it. So, to keep it still going, in some way, I am going to do a character-by-character post, starting with the TREMENDOUS female characters – cheers to shows who feature such strong and complex females.
Beware – there will be spoilers here.
played by Shannon Purser
Barbara “Barb” Holland is only in five episodes (per IMDB, though it felt like less), and is not in very many scenes, though, in spite of that, she has caused quite a stir online, and offline. She’s been the subject of street art and fan art, and many a conversation and hashtag (check the tags #justiceforbarb and
#Barbisbetterthanallofyou). She is Nancy’s best friend and confidante, and is second to Mike in the mysterious disappearing into the “Upside Down”.
Everything about Barb felt familiar to me from the first time I saw her on-screen. She dresses and has her hair almost exactly as I did my freshman year of high school, and is even built a bit like I was. She has a quiet strength that emanates off of her, and has a lot of heart, especially when it comes to Nancy. Barb has a bit of that “goodie-goodie” image about her, the same image that Nancy has, but seems to be trying to step out of. But Barb is no pushover, she speaks her mind, and is loyal, possibly to a fault.
I would argue that if developed more, we would learn that Barb has feelings beyond friendship for Nancy. I would love to see a queer character explored from an 80’s perspective, if my intuitions of Barb are true.
Maybe in Season 2.
Oh, yeah, I know they found her body, with a snake slithering through her mouth. But, I have theories about the “Upside Down”, and the notions of life and death. I do think, given time down there life is transformed, and much like worm-spewing, “resurrected” Mike, I think it’s quite possible that Barb will return.
I also think that Eleven knew that Will and Barb were lost to the world, at least in the way people would have known them before. But, I don’t think they are necessarily dead, nor alive – I think they are something in-between. Even in the picture above, Barb almost seems to be preserved, in a state of almost frozen, perhaps in a state of evolution.
Barb was the one story line I feel was lost along the way, and is actually my only real complaint about the show. No one, including the police, seemed bothered by her disappearance. Where do they assume she went? As I just said to a friend of mine, I’d love to think she ran off with Duran Duran, or to join The Bangles, but there is no way that she would have just run away with no real reason.
Nancy seemed genuinely concerned, so much so that she rebelled against her parents and her boyfriend in order to go looking or Barb. She even crawled into that nasty tree to find her. So, when Barb is found, why did we not see a later reaction from the town, or at least from Nancy. As much as I appreciated the moment where Nancy gave Jonathan the camera, I wanted a moment of her remembering Barb.
Barb deserved more, and knowing what we know on Nancy, she would have memorialized her in some way. She went after a monster to seek vengeance, and to (hopefully) save her friend. She would have done something to remember her by.
Long live Barb! We love you!