#disneydare

#disneydare: toy story 4

Another year of Disney and Pixar putting out sequels instead of original content. But that will change next year!!!

Toy Story 4 poster.jpg

Regarding this particular sequel, I mean, did we really need another Toy Story? The third one was perfect and wrapped up the story extremely well. I’ve enjoyed all the little specials on ABC to show the toys’ new life with Bonnie but was intrigued when they said it would focus on Bo Peep (Annie Potts) and Woody (Tom Hanks). I was down for a prequel-type situation but that’s not what we were given. And that’s not a bad thing!

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read

read: zodiac starforce, volume 1: by the power of astra by kevin panetta & paulina ganucheau

I don’t remember how this series came to my attention but I’m glad it did.

Zodiac Starforce Volume 1: By the Power of Astra

A group of teenage girls were granted powers and became Zodiac Starforce. They haven’t been needed lately and their friendship has fallen by the wayside. But when their leader, Emma, gets sick and monsters return, they reunite to save the world!

I loved this! It is very reminiscent of Sailor Moon but the characters are very modern and fun. Emma’s going through a lot but she doesn’t let anyone down. Kim is hilarious. Savi is so so great. And sadly, I didn’t connect to Molly? But it’s super colorful and the artwork is stunning. My only complaint is that a Sagittarius was not represented at this time. I know there’s one more volume so I pray it’s rectified but also, I’m angry we don’t get more than that. It’s such a great story for young girls! Why do the comic gods hate me?

watch

watch: dark phoenix

I’ve never fully spoken about how much I love the X-Men movies on here. I know I spoke about it on my podcast but the first X-Men movie helped me after 9/11. And I instantly became a fan. X2 is still my favorite but The Last Stand was a low point. And then there was X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Both of these movies have flaws but I don’t mind watching them for some reason (okay, Hugh Jackman is the reason).

And then, they rebooted the franchise. They gave us First Class, which was delightful and brilliantly cast James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender as Xavier and Magneto. It revitalized the love I had for these characters and Days of Future Past was also excellent. And then came Apocalypse. I think I was in between blogs at this point so I didn’t review it. And to be honest, I can’t remember like anything about it besides that it was an absolute waste of Oscar Isaac. So, going into this film was hard. I love the cast but they already stumbled with this storyline once before! Still, I believed it couldn’t be worse than Apocalypse

Dark Phoenix (film).png

After something goes awry during a space mission with the X-Men, Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) has her powers amplified. She is unable to control her new powers and seeks help from others outside of the school, including Vuk (Jessica Chastain), an alien on search of the cosmic force that is affecting Jean.

It’s funny. In previous X-Men reviews, I struggle to write a synopsis. Here, there’s no problem but also I think it’s part of the problem. All the stuff I usually love in these movies was missing. Making it smaller was not a bad thing but it also took away from the larger message these movies try to tell. They touched on it briefly but it wasn’t enough so the stakes weren’t really there.

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book club, read

read: this is how it always is by laurie frankel

This Is How It Always Is

I somehow missed when this was a Reese Witherspoon Book Club pick (but it’s rare that I get to read those anyway…) but the PopSugar Reading Challenge selected it for May. It was cheap enough at Target so I bought it. (Side note: I really need more stability so I can get a library card. I miss the library)

This is a story about a family. Rosie and Penn met in college and instantly fell in love. They have five boys and have a pretty nice life but then, their youngest son Claude announces he wants to be a girl when he grows up. They are thrown but try their hardest to give their child the life she wants.

I really liked this book. It reminded me a bit of This is Us as it is not always told in a linear fashion and the family aspect is very strong. But the overall message was so important and it’s definitely something to read for Pride Month. The strongest parts were the first two; telling Rosie and Penn’s love story as well as their family life. All of the boys are so different and I loved reading about them. And how they reacted to the change in their family dynamic.

It is such a modern story too. She never flinches from hard conversations and the constant push and pull from both Rosie and Penn about Claude, or his chosen name, Poppy, was insightful. Claude/Poppy was the lead character and a lot broke my heart regarding the story arc. While it ended quite beautifully, the final part was not the best. It took Rosie and Claude away from the family and though it ended up working, I missed the presence of Penn and the other boys. It was a bit of a radical departure and I couldn’t see where it was going. But that was pretty much my only complaint. It was such a well-written story and it genuinely moved me.

listen

listen: may 2019

May was not a great month for me. And I think it showed on this slightly neglected blog. I have some ideas for more content here so please bear with me!

Here is my playlist for May. There are only 30 songs because my May 31st song was not available on Spotify and my own copy of the file didn’t show up either! (It was “If I Believed” from Starkid’s Twisted if you’re interested!)

watch

watch: rocketman

Rocketman (film).png

Last year, I reviewed two tribute albums for Elton John and Bernie Taupin and explained my connection to these two musical geniuses. Due to this, it should come as no surprise that I was very excited to see the film based on John’s life.

This is a story about how Elton John (Taron Egerton) became a world superstar while battling addiction and exploring his sexual identity.

I liked it. The performances were brilliant but there were a few things that threw me off but I’d rather put them under the cut.

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journey to episode ix

journey to episode ix: shattered empire by greg rucka

See, jumping around the timelines! Woo! (Note: I’m keeping it tagged “Journey to Episode IX” even though we now have a title because it’s long and I’m not interested in changing it. Also, I’m lazy)

Taking place after the Battle of Endor in Return of the Jedi, the Rebellion wants to celebrate the end of the Empire but the Empire doesn’t seem to be backing down. A-Wing pilot Shara Bey and her husband Kes Dameron (MHMMM) join Han Solo, Leia Organa, and Luke Skywalker on separate adventures to officially try to stop the remains of the Empire.

My one criticism is how short it is! Four issues?! Definitely not enough! Especially since trades usually cover at least six issues! But honestly, it was very interesting. So, the comic was part of the “Journey to The Force Awakens” series which is why it’s nice to see Poe Dameron’s parents in action! Also, to show how the galaxy fell into such a state again (I have an idea kicking around for a long essay on why this shouldn’t be such a source of anger to anyone. Alas, I likely will never finish it). Slight spoilers under the cut.

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listen

listen: pink “hurts 2b human”

It’s crazy that I have been a fan of Pink’s for like nineteen years. Even more surprising is that she’s managed to stay around this long. The music industry is honestly one of the cruelest businesses out there and all her reinventions would have been for naught, if not for that voice.

Pink - Hurts 2B Human.png

And here we are, album eight! Crazy! I wasn’t a big fan of “Beautiful Trauma”. As always, her voice was flawless but the songs were kind of meh. I know she said she wrote most of it after the 2016 election but I always enjoy some of her cheekiness and spunk. That album had none of her usual elements.

This is probably her strongest album since “Funhouse”. She manages to mix maturity with her badass self and I really enjoyed this. I don’t totally love the first single, “Walk Me Home” but there are quite a few contenders for future singles and I personally cannot wait to see what she chooses. I adored “Can We Pretend”, a collaboration with Cash Cash. It’s the perfect summer jam. I loved “Happy” and “Circle Game” too though they’re not particularly fun songs. What I did find interesting was the final song “The Last Song of Your Life” which sounded like her side project, You+Me (a project I’d love to here more of). It had a more acoustic vibe and the song is gorgeous.

It’s nice to see that “Beautiful Trauma” was likely a weird blip and this album kind of put her back on track. But again, it’s her voice that is always what matters most. And I’m glad that hasn’t changed yet.

read

read: sidney chambers and the shadow of death by james runcie

It’s been a while since I did a proper review! I found this show, Grantchester, on Masterpiece in 2015 and instantly loved it. I wanted to see if the book was just as good as the show.

Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death (The Grantchester Mysteries #1)

It follows Sidney Chambers, a priest, who helps out detective Geordie Keating. The book is separated into six different mysteries, which include murder and theft.

So, the show can basically be described as “hott priest who solves mysteries and has sex”. It’s an interesting premise especially as it takes place in the ’50s. I was hoping the book would go a bit more in depth of the characters so it was slightly disappointing in that aspect. However, it is a series of some cozy mysteries. Sidney is such a lovely character and I’m very invested in his friendship with both Geordie and his sister’s friend, Amanda. And since I had watched the show, I remembered how some of the cases ended. But it’s still a solid read.

journey to episode ix

journey to episode ix: the clone wars 2×20-2×22, 3×05-3×07, 3×02

Some sad news to start this off: The Clone Wars was removed from Netflix in early April. I actually watched these episodes before then but had such a hectic April that I couldn’t carve out time for the write-up. I’m bummed that my challenge will have to take a detour around this series and Rebels. If I ever get more settled where I am, I *might* be able to take them out of a library but I can’t make any promises. I thought we’d have a little longer especially since Disney+ isn’t going up until November. *grumble*

Anyway, here goes!

The final episodes of season 2 involved Anakin (Matt Lanter) and Mace (Terrence C. Carson) visiting the Clone Youth Patrol. This was the first time we’ve seen this particular set of clones and one definitely caught my eye. The one named Lucky and I know it’s silly because they’re clones but he was pretty distinct. And it turned out I was right. We see little Boba (Daniel Logan) after losing his dad! And he’s a little shit! He only wants revenge on Mace (valid) but he’s also being manipulated by Aurra Sing (Jaime King)! So many bounty hunters, like Bossk (Dee Bradley Baker)! Mace was mean to R2 and I disapprove. However, I really wish Mace had survived past RotS. Ahsoka (Ashley Eckstein) returned and teamed up with another Jedi to find Boba. I’m very intrigued by Aurra Sing and Hondo’s (Jim Cummings) relationship.

The next batch started back in Mandalore with Satine (Anna Graves)! Easily my new favorite character. She and Padme (Catherine Taber) got to spend time together and figure out who was hurting the Mandalorian children. It was a pretty dark episode. Then, Ahsoka comes and teaches a class because Yoda (Tom Kane) trusts her and oh my heart! She does seem to have problems with keeping her saber. The cadets were such trouble, especially Satine’s nephew. Mandalore adventures end and Ahsoka is now protecting Padme on Alderaan. She keeps having Force dreams involving an assassination attempt on Padme. My favorite parts of this episode were that Padme considers Ahsoka a friend AND they played “Leia’s Theme” on the approach to Alderaan. *sobs*

The final episode I’ll discuss for now is another Kamino adventure with the Clones. Ventress (Nika Futterman) came back. 99 was there. Obi-Wan (James Arnold Taylor) and Anakin got to do something together. All my favorite things! And another Obi-Wan/Grievous match-up! YESSSSSS! Also, Anakin and Ventress’ duel was nice. But it ended on a bit of a sad note for me.

So, there we are. To be honest, I’ve been jumping all over the place anyway with Resistance (still waiting for the season 2 airdate) and I saw Return of the Jedi at Celebration plus I got sucked back into fan fiction. I’ll skip The Clone Wars and Rebels on the canon timeline for now so this feature will still be updated somewhat.