Monday, April 30, 2012

How I Met Your Mother: "Good Crazy"

Quick Review: It's all setup for the season finale.

Episode Synopsis: Marshall freaks out when he realizes that fatherhood is staring him in the face. Meanwhile, Robin and Ted come to an understanding about their relationship. -tvguide

Spoilers ahead, so watch the episode before you proceed. Because if you don't, then you're going to be spoiled. That might drive some of you crazy, and not the good kind of crazy. The kind that puts you on the wrong side of the hot/crazy scale. You don't want that. Plus, it will totally ruin your good time, because you'll know exactly what's coming and it will put you in a bad mood for the rest of the day. And not even a condolence-five will cheer you up. Well, it might a little bit.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

This Relationship Corner: In sickness

It's as inevitable as the sun rising and setting, a traffic jam when you're in a hurry, and that television show you like getting cancelled. Your significant other is going to get sick. It might be a simple cold, a less simple flu, or an extremely complicated disease that gets them mentioned in a medical journal. Whatever they've got, you are now the designated go-to caregiver. They need something, you're the first call.

You'll hear a lot of advice about when you know you should get married, and I'm going to offer one more. You shouldn't marry someone until they've been really sick. (And you should at least wait until they get better for the wedding.) The reason you need for one, or both, of you to be sick is that you need to know what it's like when that happens. If you're the one who's sick, can you count on your boyfriend or girlfriend to be there for you? Can you depend on your significant other? If so, that's a good sign. If not, that's a sign that you should re-think a lifelong commitment.

Friday, April 20, 2012

This Relationship Corner: The In-Laws

Nothing can send people into a panic faster than seven little words: "I want you to meet my family." Meeting the family is a serious step. First, it means that this relationship has reached a new phase in its development. You two are more than just casually dating, you are now an Item. And once you reach Item stage, you are serious enough to be introduced to you partner's family for poking, prodding, intense scrutiny, and overt hints about getting married and having babies.

Unless they don't like you.

On the plus side, it's doubtful you'll be bombarded with hints of weddings and babies. The down side, it's because the thought of their relative marrying you and procreating makes them ill. Nothing personal, it's just that you are completely unsuitable as a partner, completely beneath them, and likely a failure as a human being in their eyes. They can't imagine where they went wrong that their son or daughter wants to breathe the same air as you, let alone contemplate a future together.

Monday, April 16, 2012

How I Met Your Mother: "Now We're Even"

Quick Review: Three good stories are crammed into an episode and only one really pays off. 

Episode Synopsis: With Ted settled in a new apartment, Barney decides they should be bros-about-town and go out every night. Meanwhile, Lily has a risqué dream about someone other than Marshall; and Robin's career hits a high point. -tvguide 

Spoilers ahead, so watch the episode before you proceed. Of course, I get it if you don't have time to watch. Perhaps you've got a legendary night of your own planned, and your extremely extreme schedule just can't bear anything else added to it. For you, watching this episode might be the proverbial "wafer thin mint," and it would cause your entire evening to explode. We wouldn't want that, now, would we? So if you don't have time to actually watch the episode because this is "The Night We Tracked Down Joel Schumacher and Made Him Apologize (He Knows What He Did)," then I guess I can live with it.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

This Review of 'The Cabin in the Woods'

Quick Review: One of the smartest horror movies out right now and well worth seeing.

Full Review: If the names Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard do anything for you, then you already know why you should see this movie. These two don't just tackle the genres, they turn them on their heads, spin them around, and steal their lunch money. Whedon subverted the entire horror genre with 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer," both the movie and television series. (He's also directing a little movie called The Avengers.) Goddard gave us an entirely new take on the monster movie with Cloverfield and was a producer and writer for Lost, a show that kind of rewrote the rules for network television. So when these two turned their eye to the traditional genre of "Vulnerable Teens Trapped in the Woods and Chased by Something Bad," it was bound to be something we've never seen before.

From here on forward, I'm going to start talking about the movie. If you're already sold on it, stop here. Don't go any further, because the less you know about the plot, the better. The only other thing I will tell you is that there's plenty of scares, a lot of violence and gore, some brief nudity, and a lot of language. It is rated R, after all. As for the rest of it, you can read on if you feel you need to, but I really think you should just stop right here and try not to get spoiled if you hate spoilers. (Personally I was annoyed by what I picked up from accidentally flipping to a commercial, but that's just me.) You've been warned.

Monday, April 9, 2012

How I Met Your Mother: "Trilogy Time"

Quick Review: Past, present, and future collide in this amazing episode. 

Episode Synopsis: Speculations run wild as Ted, Barney and Marshall imagine what their lives will be like three years down the road. Star Wars is also involved. -tvguide

Spoilers ahead, so watch the episode before you proceed. And while you're at it, you should watch the original Star Wars trilogy if you've never seen it. Because really, you should watch it. Right now. This review isn't going anywhere. It'll still be here, and you'll come back and be all like, "Dude, thanks for telling me to go watch that Star Wars trilogy, it was awesome. And I'll be like, "I told you it was great." And you'll be like, "I know. I just watched it." So, what was I talking about again? Oh, yeah. This episode. It has something to do with Star Wars, so you should definitely watch Star Wars, then watch the episode, and then come back. Sound like a plan? Good. 

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Gospel According to Harry Potter

I began reading the Harry Potter books because Christians told me not to. It's a fantastic marketing gimmick, one I fall for time and time again. It's also why I play Dungeons and Dragons, listen to Rock and Roll, and watch Disney movies. However, what started out simply as a "let's see what's got my brothers and sisters in Christ so hot and bothered" turned into a genuine love for the series.

One of the first things I noticed, after the utter charm of the inhabitants of Hogwarts, was the fact that reading it was in no way going to turn me into a wizard. I bought a wand just in case, but I still have to locate my car keys manually rather that flick my wand and shout "accio keys!"

The third thing I noticed was a very strong Christian ethic in this series running right to the core of the story. Like the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Chronicles of Narnia, this series of books by a British author is bursting with Christian allegory, and that's what I want to talk about.

There's going to be spoilers galore, here, so stop reading if you haven't read any of the books or seen the movies. Otherwise you might find out that Dumbledore was played by two different actors in the movies, and I'd hate to ruin that for you.