thoughts

Gone into a different world 


What’s up, people?

Much talk has been about Trump and that whole obstruction of justice thing. Sessions not being able to remember what he ate for breakfast and the Deputy Attorney General possibly having to recuse himself and much more.

Shit, does it ever stop? I get that it’s in everyone’s interest to know all of this but can the US media give themselves a Trump amnesty period or something?

It was also Trump’s birthday this week and as Trevor Noah put it, it feels like we’ve all aged 70 years.

Anyway, for those of us in the UK, the most important story has been the high rise tower, Grenfell Tower, that burned down in North Kensington, London. So far 30 people have been confirmed dead, but we’ve been told that number will rise. The entire situation is so very sad. It makes me sick to my stomach, it really does. My heart goes out to everyone caught up in the fire. Things like this shouldn’t happen at all.

The government are making the right noises. There will be money provided, people will be rehoused, there will be a public enquiry. None of that is good enough. People shouldn’t have to die for change to happen.

At the moment, much is being made of the £10m refurbishment the building underwent last year. That’s a lot of money, right? You don’t spend that much, do a good job and somehow it’s not your fault when the building burns down a year later. All parties involved have been slowly washing their hands of the matter. It’s sickening, really. Complaints and concerns are well documented online. The authorities were told but nothing was done.

It’s a familiar story.

The problem with London is that there’s two versions. Often these two versions co-exist. So, you’ll have social housing on one side of a street and £1m on the other side. You have Central London and all of the nice buildings and stores, you know, the nice touristy places that look good on Instagram. The places that some Londoners can’t afford to go to.

The disparity is sort of ridiculous. I can’t remember the last new social housing project I saw, but I remember the new luxury flats because they’re everywhere. Every. Where. It always annoys me because you’ve got people in these areas that need affordable housing, and what’s being built is anything but affordable.

The sense is always that they want to push lower class people out of these areas and in light of an incident like this, it’s hard not to see some truth in that. Kensington is a very rich borough. Celebrities have properties there, oil tycoons have properties there, politicians, anyone with money.

However, none of that trickles down to the less well off.

Here’s just a few comments from those affected:

“They want people like us out of the area,” said a library assistant who lives in a block at the foot of the flats.

Beinazir Lasharie, a resident and local Labour councillor, said: “We’re a nuisance to the council. Their attitude is: ‘How dare so many ethnic minority foreigners who are not well off live in these ugly flats?’” Lasharie had been evacuated from her flat in a block next to the tower, and was uncertain about when she could return. “They don’t care about us, they don’t listen to us. It’s as if they want us to move out. They are socially cleansing us across the borough.”

“Kensington and Chelsea has looked after its rich tenants very well. It hasn’t looked after its social housing tenants so well.”

From this article in The Guardian, this person notes that:

If you go to different areas in Kensington, you can see a lot of money being invested in that area, but whatever we have here, they cut it. And everything they build here is private. If you go further down this road, it feels like you have gone into a different world.

That’s not unique to Kensington, and quite frankly, while Grenfell Tower should be the immediate priority, every single borough needs to update their fire safety regulations and actually do something about the state of some the housing the provide.

The fact that these people were in a constant state of danger in a place where they should have been the safest is sickening, and no amount of apologies or money is going to change that. Apparently, the government just can’t be bothered. They will make the right noises and spend years going through what really happened, but what people need is action. 

If these buildings are no longer safe or for to live in, they need to be knocked down and replaced. Not cladded with cheap materials.

Material used in the cladding that covered the Grenfell Tower was the cheaper, more flammable version of the two available options, an investigation of the supply chain has confirmed.

German construction companies have been banned from using plastic-filled cladding, such as Reynobond PE, on towers more than 22 metres high since the 1980s when regulations were brought in to improve fire safety at residential blocks.

[source]

One MP called it corporate manslaughter. It’s hard to argue with that assessment.

~

Have a safe weekend, snarklings. May the world suck less next week.

Bad Moviethon #7 – The Perfect Guy


(POTENTIALLY)
BAD MOVIE MARATHON #7

…in which I examine if bad movies really deserve their woeful rotten tomatoes score

The Perfect Guy | 2015 | IMDB

Plot:

With a fulfilling career and a loving relationship, lobbyist Leah Vaughn (Sanaa Lathan) seems to have it all. Things come crashing down when Dave, her long-term boyfriend, questions her future plans for marriage and a family. The resulting breakup leaves Leah heartbroken, until she meets the charming and handsome Carter Duncan (Michael Ealy). Soon, the budding romance turns dangerous as Carter reveals his volatile nature, forcing Leah to turn the tables on the man she thought was Mr. Right.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 19%

Review excerpt:

The unsure tone screams that this is a director embarrassed by the film he’s making.

First of all, Michael Ealy.

Secondly, Sanaa Lathan’s hair and wardrobe were on point.

The movie begins with Leah being all domestic with her boyfriend before she breaks up with him because he’s not ready to propose. Sometime soon, she bumps into some guy callee Carter at a coffee shop. Well. More like she turned around and he was grinning at her creepily. It was like he was paid by smile and crazy eyes because there was a lot of that in the opening half an hour. Although, Michael Ealy’s smile and crazy eyes would probably work on me too. Anyway, there’s so iced coffee related flirting stuff (I think that’s what it was supposed to be).

Anyway, after that, Carter saves her from some douche at a bar. They have dinner and things progress. They go dancing and they end up hooking up in the bathroom (recipe for disaster and also unsanitary) and they begin dating. Carter charms her parents, her friends, her cat. Everybody in nearby distance.

At one point I’m sure that someone dreamily says that he seems too good to be true. 

(more…)

On behalf of London, f**k Donald Trump


Much love & prayers to anyone who was caught up in the London Bridge attack on Saturday night. 💜❤

~

In the aftermath of the attack I was trying to keep up with everything and what did I see? Updates from Trump’s Twitter. Given that I was personally freaked out because London Bridge isn’t too far from me, I was wondering how someone who was there and looking for updates would feel when they saw the shit Trump was spewing.

Distasteful doesn’t even cover it.

First of all, what does his Travel Ban (thought it wasn’t a ban!) have to do with an attack halfway across the world? Two, we don’t know yet if this attack was carried out by British born people or not. Given that the majority of the terrorists who carried out attacks on US soil were homegrown, the Travel Ban won’t help much there either. 

Thirdly, what kind of world leader jumps off a tragedy that has only occurred to push through their isolationist and discriminatory agenda? 

One that’s got no fucking scruples.

Wow. Yes, that’s it. If we were armed, we’d all be okay. Wrong. How many people in America lose their lives to needless gun violence? Focus on your own shit before you start making suggestions. Again, classless. 

The Mayor (who just happens to be Muslim) was talking about the increased police presence. He was saying that there’s no reason to be alarmed, and that people should go on as normal. This is the kind of level headed response you expect from leaders. Not frothing at the mouth and tiny fingers on Twitter. 

People who reject political correctness are often people who want to be dickheads with no repercussion. Trump was all for it when Kathy Griffin tweeted that picture (and no I’m not defending that, just saying that it goes both ways). Oh, it’s a different matter when his kids are upset. What about the Muslim kids being bullied, the increased level of hate and intolerance in America? That’s okay, right, so long as we’re all singing Trump’s praises, fuck everyone else. 

I can only speak for myself, but I personally don’t need Trump’s blessings, or need his solidarity. He can go and fuck himself. 

Common Law (USA, 2012)


I just rewatched Common Law and I couldn’t find anything I’d written about it. Wait. Let me Google it before I speak on it. Nope. There’s diddly squat. I’m sure I did. I’ll look again after I post this.

Plot:

TV has had its share of odd couples through the years, and odd couple is the best way to describe LAPD detectives Travis Marks and Wes Mitchell. Marks is a former juvenile delinquent and a maverick ladies man while Mitchell is a former lawyer who sacrificed his marriage to become a cop. The pair has a seven-year track record as two of the finest detectives in the department’s Robbery-Homicide Division, but the two have a problem — each other. When their bickering starts to have an impact on their work, their new-age captain sends them to couples’ therapy in an attempt to reignite the flame in their “work marriage.” Enter Dr. Ryan, a tough-as-nails therapist tasked with helping Marks and Mitchell understand and resolve their conflicts in order to enhance their ability to continue solving crimes.

Basically buddy-cop with a twist.

The buddy cop genre has been around for a while. There’s Rush Hour. Lethal Weapon, Beverly Hills Cop, 48 Hours, Bad Boys (Bad Boys, what you gonna do!), 21 Jump Street.

Tango and Cash.

I haven’t seen that in years.

TV-wise, you have a few here and there. Like the Lethal Weapon show. I want to watch that but after Rush Hour, I need it to be on season 2 first.

Anyway, back onto Common Law.  (more…)

He Ate The Best Chocolates


Hello snarklings!

Trump’s big boy trip threw up some more chance encounters. I think I read an article on USA Today that claimed that he had shown discipline on the trip and that the real drama would start as soon as he has access to FOX News again. Discipline? That’s like saying Tom is disciplined when he’s not chasing Jerry. But I admire their optimism.  (more…)

10 Observations About ‘Being Mary Jane’ Season 4A


Does anyone else watch this show? Nope? Just me? Well, I enjoy talking to myself anyway, so here we go!

Spoiler Alerts ahead. 

1. We’ve come along way from Turkey Baster times.

2. Michael Ealy. Once I heard he was on the show, I was all over this season like a Beyhive member in a Twitter fight.

Allllllllll over it

3. This season is much, much better now that we’re out of Atlanta? Is it just me? It’s a shame that we don’t see her family as much but the change of scenery is good. I don’t miss all of the post it notes. Definitely not.

4. Lee Truitt, Mj’s boyfriend. Oh, gosh, where do I start. He’s British-Nigerian (tick), he’s got two kids (tick), he’s divorced (tick), he has an unconventional job (comedian, tick), his ex-wife is a lesbian (tick), he’s from Primrose Hill (tick). Said ex-wife wanted him to be her sperm donor (tick).

I suppose I should be like YAY, someone I can relate to but…. Primrose Hill.

That accent.

Nope.

I’m mostly kidding.

5. Not here for PJ’s ‘my older, mature, white mentor is in love with me and gave me a Rolex/her daughter is brat’ storyline. Or the Rhonda vs Mary Jane storyline. The actress who plays Ronda is so dramatically over the top that I can’t take her seriously. Although, I can barely take Gabrielle Union seriously, so….

6. Detective Luke from Sleepy Hollow is on this season! (Again, I need to catch up on Sleepy Hollow). Anyway, his scenes with Kara in episode 4 were EXCRUCIATINGLY BAD. I’ve never before felt compelled to move my screen out of view, but that’s what I did.

7. Niecy’s character progression was nice. They didn’t have to make her lose all of the money, though. Can’t a girl keep her coins?

8. Garrett is Tyler from Revenge. Remember that show? Started off great, became a snoozefest after five episodes.

9. They’re going to put Mary-Jane and Justin together aren’t they? All those ticks for Lee were TV red flags. Just saying. Also, that kiss. I was just like no no no nooooo well, I don’t blame her. ETA: THEY WENT THERE. On the morning show desk no less. Painful viewing. Literally. They were in a room full of cameras. A room where anyone could have seen them. Einstein’s got nothing on them.

10. Is it bad that I don’t like Kara? She irks me. She’s irksome. (Spot The Mentalist reference!). It sucks that she lost her job, though.

Anyway, I think there’s a second half of this season so I will be back with a proper review later. Maybe.

Bad Moviethon #5 – Daredevil (2003)


Daredevil | 2003 | IMDB

Synopsis: A man blinded by toxic waste which also enhanced his remaining senses fights crime as an acrobatic martial arts superhero.

Rotten tomatoes score: 44℅

Review excerpt: 

Torn between moody grandiosity and cartoonish mayhem, Daredevil tries to have it both ways, and succeeds at neither.


Batman & Robin continues to elude me but I caught this on TV last week was inspired to blog about it. Sort of. 

I don’t even need to recap. This movie is garbage

I used to think that people were being unnecessarily harsh about it, but no, it’s bad. The only thing I liked was hearing Won’t Back Down by Fuel in the closing credits. That’s my song! Teenage me probably loved the movie’s soundtrack but overall, the film itself was a mess. It was boring and somewhat nonsensical. Colin Farrell was really cheesy as Bullseye. I have no idea what that first ninja battle scene with Elektra and Daredevil was. Or whichever one happened near that kids playground. I was just shuddering due to the cringe. Not to mention the whole ‘stay‘ thing as it’s raining buckets. UGH. 

The movie is basically like one long Evanescence music video, complete with the soundtrack. 

I don’t even know how Daredevil managed to survive after Elektra almost killed him. Or how he managed to catch up with the Kingpin. It was like time slowed down for me but not the movie? If that makes sense. It barely held my attention.

On the flip side, I suppose it isn’t completely worthless. The visual effects weren’t bad. It makes for good background noise/minor entertainment and there are probably worse movies out there. Like Playing It Cool (I’m still processing just how bad that movie was). 

Anyway, based on this, I can only imagine how bad Affleck’s Batman is. I haven’t seen Batman vs. Superman but I hear that it wasn’t great. How surprising. I suppose the upside is that Affleck still has the perfect jawline for the role. 

The New Edition Story (BET)


I finally got around to watching this and I honestly have nothing bad to say about it. The acting was good, the music was good, the clothes, the authenticity of each time period was well executed, the Let’s Get Married (Remix) by Jagged Edge usage was on point (that song is my jam, I just heard it again for the first time in ages so I was super happy to hear it on the miniseries)! (more…)

retrosnark: SPN 5×22 (aka the one that I’m only posting because I’m clearing out drafts)


I’m technically still on hiatus with regards to my Supernatural viewing. I am…halfway through season 10 and I hear that they want to go up to 300 episodes so, I have plenty of time to not catch up. Seriously, how long is this madness going to go on for?

image

Anyway, I had this in my drafts and it is clean up day! I was going to rewatch Swan Song a while ago, but then I realized that I’d rather eat my own hair. I’m not and have never been a huge fan of the episode. I remembered recently that my view on the show took a swift downturn after ‘Swap Meat’, lol. So most of the episodes after that point will never go down as favourites of mine.

I think back when it aired, Swan Song was okay. I have to admit that once I’d seen it for the third time, I wasn’t all that impressed by it. Especially with the ‘coda’ at the end. And in hindsight, I honestly find it hilarious that Jensen was happy to claim that it was his idea before he saw the season 6 scripts. LOL. The regret must have been deep.

Anyway, I think right now the main problem with the episode is that nothing has really changed since then. Their other brother (I can’t remember his name now, whoops!) is presumably still in hell….uh, are they just going to leave him there? Have they ever mentioned him again? Do they seriously not care that he’s down there? Are we supposed to buy the brotherly love when they are literally the combination of the worst older brothers ever? I have no idea if they’ve clarified this or not but they have the temerity to have God on their show – they can bring back the half-brother for a damn second.

Not only that but Swan Song marked the start of what I call the ‘reset finale’ wherein everything the season has been building up to goes to shit because the writers cannot be bothered. And sure, brotherly love saved the day but that only happened by way of brotherly neglect so it doesn’t count.

The sentimental memory lane stuff was nice and all but still just a front to cover up the fact that barely anything happened. Sure, Sam drunk a ton of demon blood and gave into Lucifer. Sure, Dean stupidly decided to go after him. Sure, he got his ass beat for his trouble. And then Castiel fixed his face and almost everything that happened from that point on rendered Swan Song irrelevant.

I like to think that shortly after writing it, Kripke smashed up his laptop and screamed, ‘WOO, I’M FREE!!!’ as he stared at the charred remains of a season that went downhill long before Swan Song.

Still, at least it was somewhat entertaining. The dreck that has been aired past season 8 makes Swan Song look like amazing television.

Was the brother’s name Adam? I am officially Team SAVE ADAM! Or whatever his name is. If Jake Abel isn’t available I’m confident that anyone still watching the show would not question a cardboard cutout being used in his place.


Figured I’d post this before I (thankfully) forget even more about the episode and show. I’m glad that my brain is attempting to maximize its storage capacity by removing unwanted information!

A brief aside about ‘The Shield’


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Am I the only one who constantly has (or had to given that the show is old now!) to suspend belief when the Strike Team (which consists of four cops) manage to take on multiple gangs(and these guys are usually violent, dangerous and armed) successfully…usually without backup? Occasionally there are so hiccups for plot purposes, but really…? They couldn’t make the team six guys or something?

It’s still a good show but…my belief is still suspended.