[TV] The Bletchley Circle.

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This British mystery show follows four women who knew each other during their time together at Bletchley, a secret organization that decoded hidden messages of the Germans for the British government. The four ladies were remarkable at picking up patterns and codes that helped them win the World War.

Years after the war, they now live normal lives with “normal” jobs and have gone their separate ways. No one around them, not even their family, knows about their stint at Bletchley.

One of the women, Susan, notices a pattern in the series of killings that have been boggling the police force. A number of women have gone missing and after a few days, their bodies are found. Since Susan’s mind is trained to spot patterns and codes, she finds that the killer, possibly unaware of the fact, is moving in a pattern that would allow Susan to predict where the next victim might be found. Knowing this, she goes to the police, hoping to help the task force but the information she gave appears to be wrong. Unconvinced that she made a mistake, she contacts her former Bletchley mates so they can find the killer before he strikes again.

The show only has 2 seasons (series) with 3 – 4 episodes per season. Season 1 has 3 episodes that solve 1 mystery. While Season 2 has 4 episodes with 2 separate arcs that are concluded after 2 episodes each. I wish there were more episodes but unfortunately, it was cancelled after Season 2, in 2014.

It’s very well done and it brings to mind the movie, “The Imitation Game,” where they came up with the machine that eventually helps the British decode messages from the German army thus helping the Allies predict the German army’s movements. It’s interesting to see how ingenious they were given their lack of technology. Imagine if it were during our time, we would simply need a super computer with a high capacity and it would do all the work for us (except for some serious coding, of course).

Good news (to me), however, since I found out that a spin-off has been released a couple of weeks ago. YAY! It’s called The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco. Apparently a couple of the original cast would reprise their role in this new series but the setting would be in San Francisco. At first, I thought it would be an American version but I’m glad it isn’t just an adaptation. Looking forward to watching it.

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NinthMelody rating: 10/10

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[TV] Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries.

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This was a 3-season Australian series on Netflix. It follows the female detective, Ms Phryne Fisher (read: FRY-KNEE FISHER) in late 1920 Australia after the First World War. It’s interesting to see the setting and props of this show to really have the 1920s feel. Obviously, I don’t know how accurate they are but nonetheless, I had a really great time watching it. I just love MURDER MYSTERIES, may it be TV shows or books.

This series is based on a book series called the Phryne Fisher Mystery series. I have not read any of the books but I might try to look for it. I already have too many unread books that I don’t know how to keep up with all the wonderful books in the world.

“Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries” is interesting to watch since it is set in a time where women are regarded as “inferior” to men in many ways. Miss Phryne Fisher is a woman who breaks this stereotype and plays in the world of men, trying to be recognized as an equal. Her independent aura rubs off on other women around her and it is apparent most especially with “Dot” or Dorothy Williams, Miss Fisher’s maid/companion. She learns to become more independent and confident, under the guidance of her employer. Her character development in the series is what stood out the most to me, aside from the obvious murder/mystery aspect of the show.

Looking at old, black & white photos, I fail to see just how colorful that specific time/era actually is. Their technology and customs are truly remarkable even now as those same developments paved the way to what technology we have now. Without those innovations during those times, our time would be entirely different. Better or worse, I do not know.


It’s interesting to see that a movie adaptation will be made about this TV Show. I would definitely be on the lookout for this one.

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NinthMelody rating: 8.5/10

 

[TV] 13 Reasons Why.

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After reading the 13 Reasons Why, I definitely had to watch it. It’s a Netflix Original Series and all 13 episodes can be watched on NETFLIX right now.

I’m gonna say it now at the very beginning. I actually liked this better than the book. It’s quite rare for me to prefer a movie/tv adaptation over the book because normally the adaptations lose important details that are present on the books. In this series, however, they’ve actually added details that were missing on the book and it made everything more interesting and more alive.

In the book, the readers only read about Hannah’s and Clay’s perspectives. We only hear their versions of the truth. I’m not saying that Hannah was lying, only that her perception of the events is different from how another person might see it. It’s interesting to also see the reactions and consequences of Hannah’s tapes on the lives of the other people mentioned on the tapes and not just Clay’s. Also, each character mentioned by Hannah on her tape was given a backstory in the series. We get a glimpse of their lives and it helps us understand why they are the way they are. In a way, the series was able to humanize the characters and create a sense of empathy for them; no matter how bad they might have been to Hannah, their actions do not define who they are.

There are definitely changes in the story so it’s not a complete adaptation from the book.

  1. In the book, Clay was able to listen to the tapes in a day. In the series, however, Clay finishes listening to the tapes in several days. This is actually the mildest difference I noticed.
  2. There were additional characters in the series like Jeff Atkins (Clay’s friend whom he tutors), the parents (played a more active role in the series), and Sheri (originally Jenny in the book).
  3. A large part of the series also focuses on Hannah Baker’s parents who are also looking for answers. In the book, they were hardly mentioned but in the series, they played a much bigger role which makes a lot of sense since what kind of parents would not want to seek justice for their child’s death especially since they believe that Hannah was bullied or treated badly in school which pushed her to her decision.
  4. The sequence of the tapes are different. Clay was 11th in the series. In the book, he was 9th.
  5. Hannah’s suicide was more gory in the series where she decided to slit her wrists whilst in the bathtub. The book was more mild with Hannah overdosing on pills (which actually makes more sense since her parents own a pharmacy store).

There are other changes I’m sure but I wasn’t able to note them all down.

For entertainment value, 13 Reasons Why is a very good show. It shows the harsh reality  of life. It puts into spotlight the effects of suicide, bullying, spreading of rumors, sexual assault, emotional assault and many other topics that are difficult to discuss. The show, however, requires strict parental guidance as it does portray such topics that may be misconstrued or misunderstood by troubled audiences as a glamorization of suicide. I’m sure that is not the intent of the series but rather the opposite however, to the sensitive minds of audiences who may be playing with the idea of suicide, I worry that there might be a misinterpretation of the idea which is why STRONG PARENTAL GUIDANCE is advised. 

All in all, a good series and I wouldn’t mind getting a Season 2. It would be nice to have a definite closure for every puzzle piece. It sure did leave us hanging even more so than the book did.

NinthMelody rating: 9/10

[TV] Revenge.

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After 4 seasons, the series has finally come to an end.

If you don’t know the premise, it’s about a girl Amanda Clarke who avenges her father who was set up by a group of people he had worked with to take the blame for a terrorist attack that killed a number of people. Knowing that her father was killed in prison, Amanda Clarke decides to take on a new persona – Emily Thorne and devise a plan for revenge against the people his dad considered friends and colleagues. The main people whom Amanda/Emily found to be the masterminds behind his dad’s arrest was the Graysons – Conrad and Victoria Grayson.

It would be difficult to summarize everything that has happened in the series because well, A LOT has happened. The main reason I kept watching this show is because of the twists and turns. One revenge plan turning to another due to unforeseen circumstances is what it’s all about. I loved it! The Emily Thorne/Nolan Ross dynamic duo was just crazy good, it’s unbelievable. Sometimes their plans are a tad unrealistic but I think that’s where the excitement lies.

I will surely miss this show but it’s also a good thing it’s over. One less series for me to follow. Time to move on. I’m sure I will manage. ;p

[TV] iZombie.

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I have decided to start watching and following this new CW series called iZombie. No, it is nothing like Walking Dead (or so I think because I do not watch The Walking Dead). I simply saw that it came from the creators of “Veronica Mars” and I was sold. I looooove Veronica Mars. It’s unfortunate though that I only started watching it yearsss after it ended. Nevertheless, it was a good experience and to add to that, I only needed to wait a year after I finished the series for the movie. Sweet!

Anyway, the story of iZombie so far is about Liv (the zombie in the poster) who was formerly a successful medical resident with a gorgeous fiancé until her whole life changed one fateful night at a boat party. She wakes up inside a body bag, with a “zombie scratch.” Forward to months later where she lives as an assistant at a precinct morgue where she ingests victims’ brains for survival as a semi-normal being. She retains her humanity by consuming brains at least once a month where in the process, she gets “visions” of the lives of the person whose brain she just ate. She then helps her detective friend, Clive Babineaux solve the crimes the victims are involved in.

Just by looking at the characters and the premise, it already gives off a Veronica Mars feeling. I hope it does well in the ratings game because it’s the nearest thing we have to the VMars dose we’ve been longing for.

[TV] SELFIE.

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As I have said in my previous post, I found out about the TV series, SELFIE, after Googling about Karen Gillan. I just started watching it a couple of days ago and only then did I find out that the series was cancelled after the 6th episode. They are still, however, continuing to release the remaining episodes every week via hulu.

I must admit I was hooked starting from the first episode. The shallowness made it likable for me. It didn’t need much overthinking and analysis. The show just is what it is. It was simple and easy to accept. Also probably why other people didn’t like it.

It’s sad that this series got cancelled just as it was starting to get better and show promise. It did not even get the chance to gain the following it deserves. Why ABC, WHY?? The show has a typical storyline, that’s for sure. What makes it different though is that it’s not your typical couple match, race-wise. It’s refreshing to see an Asian leading man which is not typical in Hollywood TV shows.

Karen Gillan and John Cho show pretty good chemistry onscreen. They have a cute, awkward friendship that slowly turns into something more. RomCom recipe at its finest. Pardon me but I’m a sucker for those kinds of love stories.

I would’ve been a follower of this show. If only it weren’t cancelled. 😦 How can reality shows extend for so many seasons yet shows like this get cut after just a few episodes? Argh.