Tuesday, January 31, 2017

TUESDAY TRAILERS - WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES

When I first saw Caesar I was smitten. Not just as a cute adorable CGI chimp, but an ape who knows more and wants more than what he has. Andy Serkis is once again the most amazing actor you never really see (similar to Doug Jones). I love these films (I am not a huge fan of the original), and while I am excited to see this film I know that ultimately Caesar will probably become a martyr. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: In War for the Planet of the Apes, the third chapter of the critically acclaimed blockbuster franchise, Caesar and his apes are forced into a deadly conflict with an army of humans led by a ruthless Colonel. After the apes suffer unimaginable losses, Caesar wrestles with his darker instincts and begins his own mythic quest to avenge his kind. As the journey finally brings them face to face, Caesar and the Colonel are pitted against each other in an epic battle that will determine the fate of both their species and the future of the planet…Opens July 14th 2017.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

TUESDAY TRAILERS - KONG: SKULL ISLAND

I love King Kong. I have loved most versions of it from original to Peter Jackson. I am also highly intrigued by Skull Island as a whole. Now we get to go on adventures on it with Hiddleston. Yay! Unfortunately Sam Jackson is along for the ride (He’s fine, but lately he just plays various forms of Sam Jackson instead of actual characters) so that is a bit of a meh for me, but he might surprise me. Who knows. Still Hiddleston and Brie Larson, plus Kong (who is awesome and never should have died, cause he’s the best) What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: Kong: Skull Island reimagines the origin of the mythic Kong in a compelling, original adventure from director Jordan Vogt-Roberts. In the film, a diverse team of explorers is brought together to venture deep into an uncharted island in the Pacific—as beautiful as it is treacherous—unaware that they’re crossing into the domain of the mythic Kong..…Opens March 10th 2017.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

TUESDAY TRAILERS - BLADE RUNNER 2049

It took me almost 30 years to finally watch Blade Runner all the way through, a nerd travesty I know, and the story was intriguing. It is not perfect, but it made me pick up ‘Do Androids Drink of Electric Sheep’ finally. When I heard they were doing a sequel I was intrigued especially since Harrison Ford was going to be in it (and that changes my theory about the ending of the first film perhaps). It also has Ryan Gosling which I don’t mind seeing in more dramatic roles. Will it be a worthy sequel? Not sure yet, but I think I will want to see it on the big screen. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years. Blade Runner 2049, starring Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Ana de Armas, Sylvia Hoeks, Robin Wright, Mackenzie Davis, Carla Juri, Lennie James, with Dave Bautista and Jared Leto.…Opens sometime in 2017.

Monday, January 16, 2017

HELLO MONDAY: TRAVEL

Sad and yet so true. Happy Monday my friends.  Enjoy your week.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

SHRILL: NOTES FROM A LOUD WOMAN - A REVIEW

Shrill: Notes From a Loud Woman
Written by: Lindy West
Hardcover: 272
Publisher: Hachette
Language: English
May 2016
Genre: Humor/Memoir

Coming of age in a culture that demands women be as small, quiet, and compliant as possible--like a porcelain dove that will also have sex with you--writer and humorist Lindy West quickly discovered that she was anything but.

From a painfully shy childhood in which she tried, unsuccessfully, to hide her big body and even bigger opinions; to her public war with stand-up comedians over rape jokes; to her struggle to convince herself, and then the world, that fat people have value; to her accidental activism and never-ending battle royale with Internet trolls, Lindy narrates her life with a blend of humor and pathos that manages to make a trip to the abortion clinic funny and wring tears out of a story about diarrhea.

With inimitable good humor, vulnerability, and boundless charm, Lindy boldly shares how to survive in a world where not all stories are created equal and not all bodies are treated with equal respect, and how to weather hatred, loneliness, harassment, and loss--and walk away laughing. Shrill provocatively dissects what it means to become self-aware the hard way, to go from wanting to be silent and invisible to earning a living defending the silenced in all caps


+++++++++++++

“Women matter. Women are half of us. When you raise every woman to believe that we are insignificant, that we are broken, that we are sick, that the only cure is starvation and restraint and smallness; when you pit women against one another, keep us shackled by shame and hunger, obsessing over our flaws rather than our power and potential; when you leverage all of that to sap our money and our time—that moves the rudder of the world. It steers humanity toward conservatism and walls and the narrow interests of men, and it keeps us adrift in waters where women’s safety and humanity are secondary to men’s pleasure and convenience.”

The moment I saw that Lindy West was writing a book I was excited. I had heard her on This American Life, confronting the troll that impersonated her dead father, I had read her articles on Jezebel, and I had read about her debates on rape jokes. I like her. She’s funny. She can make you uncomfortable and make you think. Did I mention she makes me smile. After I read her I feel motivated and oddly empowered.

I read Shrill again after the election and after the holidays. I needed to remember some things, like “You can’t take good care of a thing you hate.” And “We're all building our world, right now, in real time. Let's build it better.” Obviously these things resonate with me on so many levels; on a world we are facing for the next four years, and how cruel we can be to ourselves.

You probably know Lindy even if you don’t think you do. A few years ago Lindy’s rape joke debates made her famous, but it all took its toll. What should have perhaps sparked discussions instead makes her hate standup comedy now. “My point about rape jokes may have gotten through, but my identity as a funny person – the most important thing in my life – didn’t survive.” That is rough. It also made the trolls come out in full force, to the point where one impersonated her father that had died months before. Her entire being was on display, ridiculed and joked and threatened. She writes about these things and more. She writes about her husband and the death of her father. She also writes about re-watching Garden State, and the outfits in Troop Beverly Hills. She writes about her body, on how she views it and how others view it. In fact her opening chapter begins with the way heavier women are depicted in pop culture and not having too many cool representations when she was growing up. These stories are raw, humorous, and may make you uncomfortable. Maybe that is a good thing.


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

TUESDAY TRAILERS - THE MUMMY

I love the classic Universal Monster films. They were part of my childhood and as a horror film they have always been part of my life. Of course there have been many versions of The Mummy, most recently Stephen Somers versions from 17 years ago, which I love to little bitty pieces (Patience is a virtue. Not right now it isnt…I am a librarian) This looks to try and capture the horror bit of the Mummy and stars Tom Cruise whose films we tend to watch even though he might be complete nutter. It llooks good and the perfect summer flick. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: Tom Cruise headlines a spectacular, all-new cinematic version of the legend that has fascinated cultures all over the world since the dawn of civilization: The Mummy. Thought safely entombed in a tomb deep beneath the unforgiving desert, an ancient princess (Sofia Boutella of Kingsman: The Secret Service and Star Trek Beyond) whose destiny was unjustly taken from her is awakened in our current day, bringing with her malevolence grown over millennia and terrors that defy human comprehension. From the sweeping sands of the Middle East through hidden labyrinths under modern-day London, The Mummy brings a surprising intensity and balance of wonder and thrills in an imaginative new take that ushers in a new world of gods and monsters. Cruise is joined by a cast including Annabelle Wallis (upcoming King Arthur, television’s Peaky Blinders), Jake Johnson (Jurassic World), Courtney B. Vance (TV’s American Crime Story: The People V. O.J. Simpson) and Oscar® winner Russell Crowe (Gladiator).…Opens June 9th, 2017.

Monday, January 9, 2017

HAPPY MONDAY PEOPLE!


Enjoy the week!

HOUSEBROKEN - ADMISSIONS OF AN UNTIDY LIFE: A REVIEW

Housebroken: Admissions of an Untidy Life
Written by: Laurie Notaro
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Ballatine Books
Language: English
July 2016
Genre: Humor/Memoir

#1 New York Times bestselling author Laurie Notaro isn’t exactly a domestic goddess—unless that means she fully embraces her genetic hoarding predisposition, sneaks peeks at her husband’s daily journal, or has made a list of the people she wants on her Apocalypse Survival team (her husband’s not on it).

Inspired by Victorian household manuals, Notaro chronicles her chronic misfortune in the domestic arts, including cooking, cleaning, and putting on Spanx while sweaty (which should technically qualify as an Olympic sport).

Housebroken is a rollicking new collection of essays showcasing her irreverent wit and inability to feel shame. From defying nature in the quest to making her own Twinkies, to begging her new neighbors not to become urban livestock keepers, to teaching her eight-year-old nephew about hobos, Notaro recounts her best efforts—and hilarious failures—in keeping a household inches away from being condemned. After all, home wasn’t built in a day.


+++++++++++++

“I’m not really a good housekeeper. It is what it is. I work a lot. I haven’t cleaned my house in five years and it looks like a hobo lives here, minus the shopping cart.”

Laurie Notaro makes me smile and laugh out loud when I read her books. She is extremely relatable and I think we’d get along famously. Housebroken is the 8th book I have read by her and she still tells us all about her fabulous misadventures. I also still smile.

These are her adventures of being unfriended by family on social media, of suburban chicken coops, living an untidy life, piles of to be read books, Kiss Cam incidents, sewing dresses for friends, and making cheese and twinkies.


Friday, January 6, 2017

A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES: A REVIEW

A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)
Written by: Sarah J Maas
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Language: English
May 2015
Genre: Young Adult/Fantasy/Series

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.


+++++++++++++

“I came to claim the one I love.“

I love fairytales. They are the stories my mom told me when I was a child. She also told me stories about the Tuatha, of selkies, and Tamlin. My childhood was filled with faeries, elves, and bogies. It was also filled with Grimm fairytales and others like it. We went old school. Imagine my disappointment at Disney’s Little Mermaid when she didn’t turn into sea foam at the end. Happy endings? Pft.

I also love retellings of classic fairytales and myths. After reading Throne of Glass and enjoying it, I heard that Maas was doing a Beauty and the Beast/Tamlin retelling with the fey. While the retelling of Cinderella slightly disappointed me (I wanted more bad ass assassin and less ‘oh look dresses’) I still think that Maas has the potential to be a new favorite author. Did I mention I love fairytales? I did, did I? They make me happy, especially Beauty and the Beast (Robin McKinley’s Beauty was and still is one of my favorite books).

Once upon a time Feyre lived a fairytale, but then her mother died, and her father lost their fortune. Now 19 year old Feyre does what she has to do in order to survive. Even though her family vastly underappreciates her, Feyre will still try to move the stars for them. It was a promise she made to her mother and one she intends to keep. But prey is getting scarce, so she hunts closer and closer to the border between the human lands and the Prythian lands of the powerful and immortal fey.

When she kills a wolf, her life is forever changed. The wolf was no ordinary wolf and now Feyre has a very large debt she must pay, thus the Beast like creature demands of her one night soon after. She can Forfeit her life and thus her family (as they cannot fend for themselves). Or she can spend her life in the fey lands of Prythian with the mysterious Tamlin, never to return. There is only one option for her to choose.

Feyre leaves her family behind and becomes part of the household to Tamlin, High Lord of the Spring Court, and a shapeshifter. But there are secrets within the walls of the manor. Feyre, unknowingly becomes part of a game and there are far more players on this chess board then she is aware of.


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

AND THE TREES CREPT IN: A REVIEW

And the Trees Crept In
Written by: Dawn Kurtagich
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Language: English
September 2016
Genre: Young Adult/Horror

A stunning, terrifying novel about a house the color of blood and the two sisters who are trapped there, by The Dead House author Dawn Kurtagich

When Silla and Nori arrive at their aunt's home, it's immediately clear that the "blood manor" is cursed. The creaking of the house and the stillness of the woods surrounding them would be enough of a sign, but there are secrets too--the questions that Silla can't ignore: Who is the beautiful boy that's appeared from the woods? Who is the man that her little sister sees, but no one else? And why does it seem that, ever since they arrived, the trees have been creeping closer?

Filled with just as many twists and turns as The Dead House, and with achingly beautiful, chilling language that delivers haunting scenes, AND THE TREES CREPT IN is the perfect follow-up novel for master horror writer Dawn Kurtagich.


+++++++++++++

“At least with my father, the danger was out in the open. I knew what to expect. But Auntie Cath is a different kind of dark altogether. The worst kind. The kind made from love.”

Most of you may know that I am a big horror film, much to the Rogue’s dismay. I grew up watching Hammer films and fell in love with Argento. I was the girl who watched the slasher flicks, always had a King, Barker, or Koontz book in hand and could not wait for Halloween (haunted houses for the win). I was looking for something spooky to read for October. The cover looked delicious (though less creepy than the Creeper Man version of the book) and I thought I would give it a go.

In the middle of the night Silla runs away with her little sister Nori. Escaping from their abusive father, they arrive at their Aunt Cath’s home hoping for refuge. La Baume, the Blood Manor, is where her mother and her sisters grew up. It sounds like the prefect sanctuary, tucked far into the woods, and far away from London and all of the dangers that the city still holds. Only Aunt Cath is left, but she welcomes them with open arms. For a time, Silla and Nori laugh and smile again. They are safe.

There are few rules other than ‘Do not go into Python Woods alone’. Keep Nori safe from the ‘Creeper Man’. Eventually, whispers of war reach their little haven. La Baume is off the grid and they are isolated by the woods so they should be okay. But then the food begins to run out and the garden begins to die. Everyone from the nearby village on the other side of the woods flees until they are truly all alone. Nori has a new friend only she can see. And dear Aunt Cath slowly loses her warmth and her sanity until one day she retreats to her room upstairs and never comes back down.

La Baume is no longer the magical sanctuary that Silla thought it was. It has become a cursed prison. The woods are no longer enchanted. Something lurks within them, keeps them trapped. The Creeper Man will not let them leave. Now, ever so slowly, the woods have crept closer and closer to their home. Soon the Creeper Man will be upon them.


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

TUESDAY TRAILERS - JOHN WICK 2

When the first John Wick film came out we did so without really knowing what it was about. It was Valentine’s Day and I would rather see an action flick than a romance flick. And we absolutely loved it. Apparently all former stuntmen should write and direct action films. It was funny, the fight scenes were spot on, and after the first ten minutes I really, really wanted mayhem to befall the bad guys. It looks like more of the same, including the fabulous Winston and we are very, very excited. What do you think? Plans to see it?


Summary: In this next chapter following the 2014 hit, legendary hitman John Wick [Keanu Reeves] is forced back out of retirement by a former associate plotting to seize control of a shadowy international assassins’ guild. Bound by a blood oath to help him, John travels to Rome where he squares off against some of the world’s deadliest killers…Opens February 10th, 2017.

DOCTOR STRANGE V.1 - A REVIEW

Doctor Strange (2015) Volume 1: The Way of the Weird
Written by: Jason Aaron
Illustrated by: Chris Bachalo
Hardcover: 136 pages
Publisher: Marvel
Language: English
May 2016
Genre: Comic/Graphic Novel

Only Doctor Strange can protect our world from the darkness beyond -- now, witness the full toll that constant struggle takes on Earth's Sorcerer Supreme! Every spell cast comes at a cost, but what happens when Strange falls behind on his tab? Find out as the good doctor wakes up somewhere very odd, nearly naked -- with no spell books, no weapons and no memory of how he got there...or why all the monsters are chasing him! And as a new visitor to Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum learns one wrong door can lead to oblivion, a magic circle of Strange's friends and allies are about to face their greatest threat. Dark forces are destroying everything mystical in the multiverse, and their sights are set on this dimension. Magic's days are numbered, and Doctor Strange is not ready!

Collecting DOCTOR STRANGE (2015) #1-5.


+++++++++++++

“Who do you call when things are coming out of your dreams and trying to kill you? Or when your daughter is cursing in Latin and walking like a spider? Or when your dog keeps screaming at you to strangle your neighbors? Doctor Strange, of course. “

There are still a few Marvel characters I do not know very well despite being the Marvel fangirl that I am. One of them is Doctor Strange. Sure I know the basics and what I have gleaned from his appearances in other series, but I figured I should read what’s new in comics before I went and saw the film (as a refresher course). Jason Aaron’s new series seemed like a good start especially when the first trade came out this summer.

The volume begins with a page of faded Silver Age panels giving the cliff notes version of how Doctor Strange came to be. It’s a quick origin story and that’s all you really need to know. But here is a more modern Strange and one I think I am going to like. I also pictured Strange as having a similar personality to Stark, kind of an ass, ego completely unchecked, but a hero in the end. Here, he is boyish and charming. Ego is still there, but I find him endearing.

‘My name is Stephen Strange and this is a normal Tuesday for me.’ And by normal we are talking about giant teddy bears for the win. Oh and monsters.

Things I liked: Whoa Nelly, that art. I loved it. From the first splash page to the colors and how the Sanctum is depicted…loved it so much. Those opening pages set the tone for the rest of the volume and I hope the series. It’s fun, it’s exciting, and full of weird magic. Just how I like it. This was not the Stephen Strange I was expecting and I am so giddy that I was wrong.

Like I said Doctor Strange still has his ego and his arrogance shows through at times, but he also is shades of aloofness and kind of Harry Dresden when I think about it. He’s funny. He has quips. He understands that though extremely powerful as the Sorcerer Supreme, that power comes with a high price. He’s acerbic and has ulcers the size of subway rats. Above all he is the hero in the story. You see it with his payment on the kid’s life at the beginning, how he helps our new librarian friend, and how much he truly cares about this world.

I loved the Bar with no doors, sitting with Doctor Voodoo, Scarlet Witch and Shaman. I loved ‘‘Do not talk to the snakes.’ ‘Hey girl, what’s up?’ ‘What’s your hurry?’ (Can we revisit the snakes again in another issue). I loved the trippiness of the monsters. Yeah I just kind of loved it all.

Things I didn’t like so much: It ends on a cliffhanger.

Buy or Borrow: Buy. Or at least pick it up from the library. A great place to begin I think with Doctor Strange.

Part of: Ongoing series.

Also Recommended: For more Jason Aaron try his run with Thor (The Goddess of Thunder), Scalped, or Original Sin. For more Doctor Strange see how J Michael Straczynski did with Doctor Strange: Beginnings and Endings. For some more magic tinged comics give Black Magick by Greg Rucka a shot or maybe Monstress by Marjorie Liu.

4 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Monday, January 2, 2017

FRESH ROMANCE: A REVIEW

Fresh Romance
Written by: Sarah Kuhn, Kate Leth, Sarah Vaughn, and more
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Oni Press
Language: English
August 2016
Genre: Comic/Graphic Novel

The critically-acclaimed anthology FRESH ROMANCE is finally available in print! Have you been wondering what the fuss is all about? FRESH ROMANCE is an exciting collection of romance comics from some of comics most talented creators, including Kate Leth, Arielle Jovellanos, Sarah Vaughn, Sarah Winifred Searle, Sarah Kuhn, Marguerite Bennett, and Trungles. From unhappy historical marriages to covert teenage romances, there's something for everyone in FRESH ROMANCE."

+++++++++++++

I am a sucker for a good romance. Case in point as I have just finished both Fresh Romance and The Secret Loves of Geek Girls. Nerd love for the win. I did pick up Fresh Romance largely for Kate Leth, but was drawn to some of the artwork I had seen through other bibliophile friends. Plus love. Mushy mushy happy love. While I may not always seem like the die-hard romantic, I am. As I said I am a sucker for a good romance. When I managed my movie store many years ago I fell in love with the romance manga. Titles likes Mars made me very happy on my lunchbreaks. It seems that Romance comics are making a comeback. I look forward to reading more.

The stories: 
School Spirit // Kate Leth and Arielle Jovellanos
A great little story with two pairs of star crossed lovers. One set is about a witch who isn’t allowed to date mortals but she fell for one. The other is a pair of lovely women with homophobic parents. Oh and the school dance is the backdrop. They are all friends with one another and try to help keep both their secrets safe. I loved the character designs and I enjoyed the overall story, but strangely this was not my favorite of the anthology. I still liked how fun this was. Seriously, the artwork is great and overall I thought it was a nice way to open the anthology.

Ruined // Sarah Vaughn and Sarah Winifred Searle
Okay this was my jam. A Regency story about a marriage of convenience that neither party particularly wanted. She is a Ruined woman and he needs her dowry. And yet perhaps it is turning into something more. It is a slow burn story and an incomplete story which is frustrating as I wanted more. I found it beautiful and wonderful. Did I mention I want more. Please.

Ruby Equation // Sarah Kuhn and Sally Jane Thompson
A multi-dimensional being is tasked at playing Cupid here on Earth. In order to move on she has to make a non-believer of love fall in love. This one was a bit predictable, but it had a lot of energy and was fun. For me this was the weakest of the stories but it works well in this first volume of Fresh Romance.

Beauties // Marguerite Bennett and Trungles
Absolutely gorgeous retelling of Beauty and the Beast. The artwork is exquisite and the story…le sigh. It is lyrical, stylized, and I loved every bit of it. The prose is magnificent and I ate up every bit of it. It is sugary loveliness, a fairytale that a die-hard mushy romantic like myself loves to read and watch. Between this and Marguerite’s entry in the Secret Loves of Geek Girls I am now a very big fan and will seek out more.

First, Last & Always // by Kieron Gillen and Christine Norrie
The shortest of the stories it is about a young woman who feels her last kiss with someone when she has their first kiss. Love the artwork and of course love the story. It’s not long enough to have any real impact, but it is a nice little Le Fin.

Buy or Borrow: Buy. Buy. Buy. Or at least pick it up from the library. I would like to hear what you thought about it.

Part of: Hopefully the first volume of many more to come.

Also Recommended: For more nerdy romance give The Secret Loves of Geek Girls a chance. I would also recommend the following comics: Giant Days, Pride and Prejudice comic adaptation by Nancy Butler (se does other Austen stories as well), and Awkward and Definition by Ariel Schrag. For some adult comics try Oh Joy, Sex Toy and Rent Girl.

3.5 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

WATCH/READ/PLAY: JANUARY 2017

Happy New Year everyone. 2016 was a difficult year, but I am going to be optimistic about this year. There are plenty of new books, shows, movies, and games for me to play, so that cannot be all that bad. January is a fun month for me most of the time. It is the beginning of resolutions, and new beginnings. Fresh starts and new adventures. Let’s begin shall we. Did I miss something? Let me know.

FILM & TV
Conviction moves to a new night
Channel: ABC
In short: The Rogue and I have been enjoying Hayley Atwell’s new gig after Agent Carter was cancelled. Of course because I like it there will be no second season. So I have to be content with watching these last few episodes. (January 1st)

Sherlock Fourth Season Premiere
Channel: PBS
In short: Sherlock returns with Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Toby Jones is the new villain (we’ve been watching him in the Detectorists which is really sweet by the way) and I look forward to more mysteries with them. (January 1st)

Beyond Series Premiere
Channel: FREEFORM
In short: A young man awakens from a 12-year coma with special powers in this sci-fi thriller produced by Tim Kring (Heroes). New episodes will air weekly on Freeform (starting with tonight's 2-hour premiere), but all 10 episodes will be available immediately on demand and on Hulu beginning after the premiere. (January 2nd)

Bones Final Season Premiere
Channel: FOX
In short: It’s been a while since I have watched Bones, but I have a few friends that are both excited and slightly dismayed about the final season. (January 3rd)

Portlandia Seventh Season Premiere
Channel: FREEFORM
In short: Season 7 giest stars include Abbi Jackson, Andy Richter, Rachel Dratch and Laurie Metcalf plus some returning regulars like Kyle MacLachlan and Kumail Nanjiani. (January 5th)

Emerald City Series Premiere
Channel: NBC
In short: This Wizard of the Oz reboot not only has Tarsem Singh (The Cell, The Fall) directing all ten episodes, but also has Kelly Sue DeConnick (Bitch Planet, Pretty Deadly) on the writing team which makes me very excited about this show. Plus Dorothy isn’t a kid anymore and Toto is a police dog. I think it looks pretty great and I will be giving it a go. (January 6th)

Grimm Final Season Premiere
Channel: NBC
In short: Thus begins the series final 13 episode season. We haven’t watched it all yet, but it is in our queue. (January 6th)

Underworld: Blood Wars
Genre: Action/Horror
Stars:Kate Beckinsale, Theo James, and Tobias Menzies
In short: Selene has resurfaced yet again as she fights to end the battle between the Lycans and The Vampires once and for all. (January 6th)

A Monster Calls
Genre: Drama/Fantasy
Stars:Sigourney Weaver, Felicity Jones, Lewis MacDougall, Liam Neeson
In short: This looks amazing and utterly heartbreaking at the same time. It tells the story of a young boy who seeks the help of a tree monster to help cope with the fact that his single parent mother is dying of a terminal illness. Lord knows I wish I had a monster to call when life gives me the suck in spades. (January 6th)

74th Golden Globe Awards
Channel: NBC
In short: Jimmy Fallon hosts this year. Award Season has officially begun. (January 8th)

Taboo Series Premiere
Channel: FX
In short: Tom Hardy stars in this 8 episode series about a revenge-seeking adventurer set in the early 1800s. It also stars Jonathan Pryce, Franka Potente, and Michael Kelly. I am a sucker for conspiracy thrillers and Tom Hardy. (January 10th)

Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events Series Premiere
Channel: NETFLIX
In short: Patrick Warburton, Neil Patrick Harris, Malina Weissman, Joan Cusack, and Aasif Mandvi star in this eight-episode adaptation of Daniel Handler's popular books. Handler himself is writing the series (which will cover the first four books in this first season), with Barry Sonnenfeld directing. So excited. (January 13th)

Victoria Series Premiere
Channel: PBS
In short: Victoria, starring Jenna Coleman and Rufus Sewell, follows the Queen of the same name during her first three years on the throne, beginning when she was just 18. (January 15th)

The Young Pope Series Premiere
Channel: HBO
In short: Billed as a miniseries (though a second season is unofficially in pre-production), this 10-episode drama from acclaimed director Paolo Sorrentino (Youth, The Great Beauty) stars Jude Law as the (fictitious) first American-born Pope in history. (January 15th)

xXx: Return of Xander Cage
Genre: Action/Adventure
Stars:Vin Diesel, Donnie Yen
In short: The Rogue is excited to see Xander Cage back in action with his over the top antics. In this outing he has been left for dead, though secretly returns to action for more impossible feats. I think this is why the Rogue likes him. Plus Donnie Yen, so… (January 20th)

Split
Genre: Horror/Thriller
Stars:Anya Taylor-Joy, James McAvoy
In short: I love James McAvoy and have since he was in the Children of Dune series many moons ago. I think he is insanely talented and I look forward to his myriad of personalities. I am also an M. Night fan (though not recently) and am one of those rare individuals that actually liked the Village and Lady in the Water. I hope this is M. Night returning to what I love about him. (January 20th)

The Red Turtle
Genre: Animation/Fantasy
In short: This dialogue-less film follows the major life stages of a castaway on a deserted tropical island populated by turtles, crabs, and birds. It looks beautiful, though with my luck will not play anywhere near here. (January 20th)

Frontier Series Premiere
Channel: NETFLIX
In short: Jason Momoa stars in this series that chronicles the North American fur trade in the 1700’s. So while we wait for more Aquaman, try this series which has already been renewed for a second season. (January 20th)

Beaches Movie Premiere
Channel: LIFETIME
In short: Lifetime's remake of the 1988 Bette Midler film stars Idina Menzel and Nia Long and is directed by Allison Anders. Will there be a new version of "Wind Beneath My Wings"? Count on it. Also make sure you have your tissues ready. (January 21st)

The Magicians Second Season Premiere
Channel: SYFY
In short: The Rogue and I just starting watching this during the Holiday season since the first season became available on Netflix. If you still carry cable, check out the second season. (January 25th)

Riverdale Series Premiere
Channel: CW
In short: The latest CW comic book series comes without a single superhero; the source material here is the 75-year-old Archie Comics series. Greg Berlanti's latest drama aims to present a "surprising and subversive take" on Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead, and the rest of the gang from Riverdale, emphasizing the "surrealism" and "darkness" of small-town life. Producers call it a "teenage Twin Peaks," and, like that show, it attempts to blend murder mystery with high school romance and other elements. Not sure how I feel about it, but I know I will probably give it a try. (January 26th)

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
Genre: Horror/Action
Stars:Ruby Rose, Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter
In short: Picking up immediately after the events in Resident Evil: Retribution, Alice (Milla Jovovich) is the only survivor of what was meant to be humanity's final stand against the undead. Now, she must return to where the nightmare began - The Hive in Raccoon City, where the Umbrella Corporation is gathering its forces for a final strike against the only remaining survivors of the apocalypse. (January 27th)

Z: The Beginning of Everything Season Premiere
Channel: AMAZON
In short: This Amazon original stars Christina Ricci as Zelda Fitzgerald. Could be interesting. (January 27th)

Planet Earth II Premiere
Channel: BBC AMERICA
In short: Yay more animals and more David Attenborough. (January 28th)

BOOKS
The Book Jumper by Mechthild Glaser (January 3rd)
In short: Amy Lennox doesn't know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother's childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay. Amy's grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy must read while she resides at Lennox House—but not in the usual way. It turns out that Amy is a book jumper, able to leap into a story and interact with the world inside. As thrilling as Amy's new power is, it also brings danger—someone is stealing from the books she visits, and that person may be after her life. Teaming up with fellow book jumper Will, Amy vows to get to the bottom of the thefts—at whatever the cost.

The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories by Terry Pratchett (January 3rd)
In short: Do you believe in magic? Can you imagine a war between wizards? An exciting journey in an airship or down in a submarine? Would you like to meet the fastest truncheon in the Wild West? The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner is the second fabulously funny short-story collection from the late acclaimed storyteller Terry Pratchett. A follow-up to Dragons at Crumbling Castle, this second batch of storytelling gems features stories written when Sir Terry was just seventeen years old and working as a junior reporter. In these pages, new Pratchett fans will find wonder, mayhem, sorcery, and delight—and loyal readers will recognize the seeds of ideas that went on to influence his most beloved tales later in life. As Neil Gaiman says, “a Terry Pratchett book is a small miracle”—and The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner proves to be another miracle taking its place alongside Pratchett’s astounding and cherished body of work.

Windwitch (The Witchlands #2) by Susan Dennard (January 10th)
In short: Sometimes our enemies are also our only allies… After an explosion destroys his ship, the world believes Prince Merik, Windwitch, is dead. Scarred yet alive, Merik is determined to prove his sister’s treachery. Upon reaching the royal capital, crowded with refugees, he haunts the streets, fighting for the weak—which leads to whispers of a disfigured demigod, the Fury, who brings justice to the oppressed. When the Bloodwitch Aeduan discovers a bounty on Iseult, he makes sure to be the first to find her—yet in a surprise twist, Iseult offers him a deal. She will return money stolen from him, if he locates Safi. Now they must work together to cross the Witchlands, while constantly wondering, who will betray whom first? After a surprise attack and shipwreck, Safi and the Empress of Marstok barely escape with their lives. Alone in a land of pirates, every moment balances on a knife’s edge—especially when the pirates’ next move could unleash war upon the Witchlands.

Frostblood by Elly Blake (January 10th)
In short: Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby's powers are unpredictable, and she's not sure she's willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon. All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king's tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love. Fast-paced and compelling, Frostblood is the first in a page-turning new young adult three-book series about a world where flame and ice are mortal enemies—but together create a power that could change everything.

Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth (January 17th)
In short: On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not—their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world? Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power—something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows. Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuvhe, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive—no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive—or to destroy one another.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber (January 31st)
In short: Whatever you've heard about Caraval, it doesn't compare to the reality. It's more than just a game or a performance. It's the closest you'll ever find to magic in this world . . . Welcome, welcome to Caraval—Stephanie Garber’s sweeping tale of two sisters who escape their ruthless father when they enter the dangerous intrigue of a legendary game. Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the far-away, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over. But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner. Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

Wires and Nerve, Vol 1 by Marissa Meyer (January 31st)
In short: In her first graphic novel, #1 New York Times and USA Today bestseller Marissa Meyer follows Iko, the beloved android from the Lunar Chronicles, on a dangerous and romantic new adventure -- with a little help from Cinder and the Lunar team. In her first graphic novel, bestselling author Marissa Meyer extends the world of the Lunar Chronicles with a brand-new, action-packed story about Iko, the android with a heart of (mechanized) gold. When rogue packs of wolf-hybrid soldiers threaten the tenuous peace alliance between Earth and Luna, Iko takes it upon herself to hunt down the soldiers' leader. She is soon working with a handsome royal guard who forces her to question everything she knows about love, loyalty, and her own humanity. With appearances by Cinder and the rest of the Rampion crew, this is a must-have for fans of the bestselling series.

Bitch Planet V. 2: President Bitch by Kelly Sue DeConnick (January 31st)
In short: Eisner Award-nominated writer KELLY SUE DeCONNICK (PRETTY DEADLY, Captain Marvel) and VALENTINE DE LANDRO (X-Factor) follow up on the success of EXTRAORDINARY MACHINE with the second installment of their highly acclaimed and fiercely unapologetic BITCH PLANET. A few years down the road in the wrong direction, a woman's failure to comply with her patriarchal overlords results in exile to the meanest penal planet in the galaxy. But what happened on Earth that this new world order came to pass in the first place? Return to the grim corridors of Auxiliary Compliance Outpost #2, to uncover the first clues to the history of the world as we know it…and meet PRESIDENT BITCH. This volume collects issues #6-10, a reader discussion guide and additional bonus materials.

GAMES
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
Platform: PS4, Windows PC, Xbox One
In short: It’s first person perspective this time, but with familiar Resident Evil Gameplay such as green herbs. Could be fun. (January 24th)