Ben Homes

  • Will season three of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend be the best yet?

    Will Crazy Ex-Girlfriend season three be the best yet or will it suffer from third season fatigue?

  • Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later is dumb as hell but hilarious

    If the creators of Wet Hot American Summer (WHAS for short) want to do another series after this, I have no idea what they could do. First Day of Camp was a stroke of brilliance and Ten Years Later makes sense but unless there’s some reference in the final episode that I’ve yet to come to then who knows where this universe can now go. One of the core reasons is that there’s not a huge amount of mean spiritedness on show and it feels more like Parks and Rec then any other cruder comedy shows.

  • Rick and Morty and szechuan sauce

    Did you know that Rick and Morty is the 7th highest rated TV show on IMDB? It’s probably not to do with the creators (Dan Harmon in particular), whose acclaimed but definitely cult show Community has barely made a dent in international markets. Rick and Morty seems to have rapidly gained a pretty big following and that 9.3 rating on IMDB, whilst baffling, only makes sense when you realise how shows like Game of Thrones are propelled into public consciousness through sheer word of mouth and the rapid distribution of media.

  • Best of SDCC... so far, Stranger Things wins

    Thank god for the internet then as we are able to get to see all of these wonderful trailers and promotional materials without having to leave our living rooms. The world of The Walking Dead got a trailer showing a lot of explosions, inspiring speeches and old man Rick whilst its sister show got pretty much the exact same but without the Rick part. The Inhumans got another dull trailer whilst The Defenders got a more interesting one.

  • Orange is the New Black Season 5: The great, the meh and the ugly

    If season 5 of Orange is the New Black was a sandwich it would be made of 5-star bread with 3-star filling. Usually, OITNB has a lot of filler, that’s what you get when you’re technically considered to be a comedy-drama. After the dark ruckus at the end of season four OITNB moves to spend its entire season over the course of three days.

  • Doctor Who: The not so definitive ranking

    With series 10 having just finished, I now will try to rank all ten seasons (worst to best) of the BBC’s flagship show as best I can. This particular disappointment was none-more-so evident than in series seven, which split it’s 13 episodes (plus a Christmas special) over two years. Then we met Clara Oswald for the first time and despite some good stuff here and there, it kind of sucked that her character existed solely for the purpose of The Doctor.

  • How Doctor Who got it's mojo back

    Apart from an obvious reveal, some wasted Bill and silliness here and there, ‘World Enough and Time’ and ‘The Doctor Falls’ were fantastic. The characterisation of Missy was fascinating, the cinematography was beautiful, the music stunning. The only weak note was, surprisingly, John Simm’s returning Master who didn’t really do much but give Missy closure to her arc.

  • American Gods: Five Favourite Gods

    American Gods is a smart, engaging and expertly crafted show and one of the best of the year. This is in part due to fantastic source material from author Neil Gaiman, the insane creative minds of showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green and the spot on casting. It’s no small task in portraying a god, sometimes physical embodiments of such ethereal concepts, but the casting directors have pretty much nailed each one.

  • Seven best Steven Universe songs

    It’s one of the finest show of the moment not just because of its diverse cast, complex themes and endearing characters but because it is has a kick-ass soundtrack complete with a dearth of original songs. To celebrate the first gorgeous volume being released for purchase, I want to go through my top seven favourite songs of the series. Warning spoilers!

  • The gimmick of OITNB season five mostly pays off

    Season five was always going to be a gamble, no matter its structure. Picking up directly after the show’s most controversial season yet, it could’ve easily have continued to self-destruct. I can see why some may find season five particularly insufferable as it essentially stretches the concept of a bottle episode out over an entire season.

  • One Love Manchester is a shining beacon of solidarity

    Resilience and solidarity in the face of adversity are a part of that. This Sunday night, as millions drew strength from others in the wake of another horrific event in London, we sat and watched as Ariana Grande, a host of huge musical names and a crowd of thousands sang their hearts out to demonstrate exactly that. It was a beautiful, heartrending and spectacular show that will go down in history, along with something like the original Live Aid, as a symbol of peace and solidarity.

  • Unsettling and extraordinary the return of Twin Peaks is landmark TV

    Cancelled back in the day with only two seasons (and later a film) to its name, the show’s brand of backwater American weirdness defined the shape of TV in the 90’s. With umpteen reboots and follow-ups coming out of the woodwork these days, it was no surprise that creators David Lynch and Mark Frost would fulfil their own prophecy of “see you in 25 years” and bring the show back to set a new benchmark in the golden age of TV.

  • Steven Universe and building trust with fans

    You’d be hard-pressed to find a show more instantly likeable than Steven Universe. Granted, the grouchier among us may turn their noses at the inherent silliness of its title character, especially in those early episodes. Yet, what comes across pretty much instantly is how rewarding the show can be to a first time viewer.

  • American Gods: "Angry gets s**t done"

    The opening gambit of ‘The Secret of Spoons’ is a stunning sequence wherein old African trickster god Anansi (Mr Nancy) played with impeccable bravura by Orlando Jones insights rebellion on an African slave ship. After that we meet Media (Gillian Anderson), portraying Lucy Ricardo from I Love Lucy (Black and White and everything) who asks Shadow to join her new god brigade and Czernobog (Peter Stormare) whose love of killing leaves the episode on a stunning cliffhanger.

  • Beguiling and unnerving, is American Gods the new Game of Thrones?

    Stranded Vikings, bloody bar fights and jaw-dropping sex the first episode of American Gods is unlike any show you’ve ever seen…and it’s damn good. It’s also about race and religion and women and sex and so much more but with so much more left to give. The cast are a captivating bunch from McShane’s gravely Mr Wednesday to tortured ex-con Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle) and the visual and audio inventiveness makes the drama spark.

  • Was Broadchurch better off?

    By the final episode, Trish has become less of a prominent character and the show felt like it was trying to be more of a goodbye to the show itself. The conclusion to the Latimer storyline worked fine but it felt shoehorned in and the rest of the town residents, Reverend Paul, in particular, seemed to be there for the sake of it.

  • Doctor Who: Brave new worlds

    Sarah Dollard smartly brings attention to issues of race, giving the show relevance and all as part of a fun London set, regency era adventure set on the frozen Thames. What with The Pilot and last weeks Smile, this series is making a far better name for itself than any for the last few years.

  • Spoilt for choice

    There’s not enough time in the day to watch all of the great TV out there. You have new episodes of Better Call Saul, Doctor Who, Fargo, Steven Universe, The Leftovers, American Gods, Attack on Titan, Legion, Bates Motel…the list goes on. I don’t even know how to fit it all in anymore.

  • Broadchurch: A satisfying goodbye?

    It was the one small detail in episode one that was the clue to this season’s arc, not that the perpetrator, of not just multiple rapes but sadistic groomer of Michael Lucas, was sleazeball Leo Humphries but rather the pictures on his wall making the point it was meant to. This wasn’t going to be a regular whodunnit, it was always about something more, despite writer Chris Chibnall occasionally diverging into melodrama. No, this series was about rape culture, everyday sexism and how women are treated and viewed in society as commodities.

  • Doctor Who: My hopes for the future

    Chris Chibnall is the new showrunner and whilst it would be nice to have a woman running the show, he’s very much proven his credentials with the fantastic third series of Broadchurch. Then we have the new Doctor, who half the fan base agree must be either a woman or person of colour and the other half want Kris Marshall. Departing showrunner Stephen Moffat has many great ideas but his writing has stagnated over the last couple of years and with the BBC messing about with splitting or shortening series, the nature of the show we grew to love feels like it’s only getting back to basics.