dustin-rowles

BCS 3x06 Observations: There’s an amusing theory on Reddit that suggests that Chuck is on the road to recovery, but that he’ll end up burning his house down in the season finale, “Lantern.” He’ll be left in a vegetative state and the season will end with Jimmy reading The Adventures of Mabel to Chuck. That’s almost too perfect. Dustin Rowles

Kyle Chandler may be the draw for Bloodline, and he’s as solid as ever (imagine Coach Taylor as a detective with the profanity filter turned off), but it’s Mendelsohn that will draw you in. Television has never seen anything quite like Danny Rayburn; He’s oily and conniving, equal parts charming and terrifying. He’s like the dark half of Aden Young’s character in Rectify, the kind of character that disturbs your energy. There’s far more to him than what’s immediately apparent, and most of the fun of Bloodline is getting inside of his mind and figuring out what makes the guy tick. Spoiler alert: It’s pure spite and malevolence.

What’s interesting about Danny, however, is how easy it is to simultaneously sympathize and despise him. He’s that guy you can’t help but want to root for, even though you know it’s never going to work out for him. He’s doomed from the beginning, and the only question is how far he’ll take the rest of the family down with him. He’s not so much an anti-hero as he is a villain you’d like to see win a few battles before ultimately losing the war. He’s a snake, slithering through the lives of his siblings, striking through the pretense and opening up old wounds that have to have the poison sucked out.

Bloodline is engrossing, so much so that somewhere along the way, you may find yourself wondering if you skipped an episode. You’ll start in on episode 7, fall into a trance, and wake up somewhere around episode 10, wondering what happened to the last four hours of your life. Mendelson will hook you immediately, but after four or five episodes — once the pieces begin to fall into place — the story will sweep you along toward the dark and sickly satisfying end, capping the series off with four of the best episodes in the short but stellar history of Netflix’s original programming.

- By Dustin Rowles, Pajiba | Netflix Movies and TV | March 23, 2015 |

Better Call Saul Insider for 1x07: As many of you already know, Betsy Kettleman is a shout-out to Betsy Brandt, who played Marie on Breaking Bad. To that point, Vince and the gang had a good time discussing the possibility of Marie on Breaking Bad and Betsy Kettleman hanging out.

Julie Ann Emery: [Can you imagine Marie and Betsy Kettleman together?] “They’d be shoplifting at Prada and selling it out of the back of the car.”
Peter Gould: “They live in the same world. Anything is possible.”
Gilligan: “Marie would do the shoplifting, and Betsy would say, ‘I think that sales assistant saw you. I think we’ll have to murder them.‘”

– All The Incredibly Neat Details You Might Have Missed In This Week’s ‘Better Call Saul’ by Dustin Rowles

Gus Fring BCS S2 theory by cassieboy81 on Reddit: “If you take the first letter of every episode title in Season 2, it forms an anagram of ‘Fring’s Back.’ Coincidence? I think not. Like Season 2 of Breaking Bad, where the episode titles foreshadow the plane crash. And, as someone has pointed out, ‘Klick’ is a rather strange way to spell click. Seems like they were looking for a specific letter.” This theory is also discussed by Dustin Rowles on Uproxx. Personally, I thought it was bullshit until I thought about the ‘Klick’ spelling. That gives it some legs. Who’s ready for the return of the Fring?

Update: Apparently this theory was first posited by Shaquita on Twitter more than a week prior to the Reddit discussion. 

What? Benedict Cumberbatch? The guy’s as goofy looking as his name. What’s to love about a pasty thin British nub with moppy hair and a dorky smile? I mean, besides the voice. The sly demeanor. The glimmery eyes. The impeccable cheekbones. His cerebral approach to his craft. Maybe it’s his keen fashion sense, or maybe it’s just the scarf. Or maybe it’s because he’s the best goddamn Sherlock in the history of Sherlocks. In real life, the man was once kidnapped and locked into the trunk of his car by six men in South Africa, and he smart-talked his way out of the situation. Maybe it’s his appreciation for life bleeding through that people are drawn toward. God knows it wasn’t Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, which was a total bore. Maybe, oh, I don’t know. Maybe it’s just the man’s ass. Whatever it is, Benedict Cumberbatch is incredibly sexy almost in spite of himself, and to land in the Pajiba 10 looking like he does suggest there’s powerful forces at play in the soul of Cumberbatch, which makes him my favorite kind of Pajiba 10 entrant, a guy that will mind-f*ck you to ecstasy before he even removes your clothes.
—  Dustin Rowles
Pajiba Ten Sexiest celebrities - Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch — What? Benedict Cumberbatch? The guy’s as goofy looking as his name. What’s to love about a pasty thin British nub with moppy hair and a dorky smile? I mean, besides the voice. The sly demeanor. The glimmery eyes. The impeccable cheekbones. His cerebral approach to his craft. Maybe it’s his keen fashion sense, or maybe it’s just the scarf. Or maybe it’s because he’s the best goddamn Sherlock in the history of Sherlocks. In real life, the man was once kidnapped and locked into the trunk of his car by six men in South Africa, and he smart-talked his way out of the situation. Maybe it’s his appreciation for life bleeding through that people are drawn toward. God knows it wasn’t Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, which was a total bore. Maybe, oh, I don’t know. Maybe it’s just the man’s ass. Whatever it is, Benedict Cumberbatch is incredibly sexy almost in spite of himself, and to land in the Pajiba 10 looking like he does suggest there’s powerful forces at play in the soul of Cumberbatch, which makes him my favorite kind of Pajiba 10 entrant, a guy that will mind-f*ck you to ecstasy before he even removes your clothes. — Dustin Rowles

i love snarky humor, especially in film reviews. This film review made my entire week. [Spoilers ahead]

Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 Review: Disappointing Buzz Bank Fodder for Repressed Half-Literates

ByDustin Rowles

For the first time in many months, I had an experience at the cinema that honestly moved me, that made my heart do a little back flip and turn to mush. Two characters onscreen — one a monster, one a human — captured in a brief snatch of time the transformative power of love, and it’s ability to heat even the cold hearts of the undead.

Of course, that was the trailer for Warm Bodies that preceded Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2. It looks so good, people.

As for Breaking Dawn Part 2? That movie was crap. An unrelenting assault of vacuous, stubbornly anti-sapient hormonal porn for middle-aged moms. It says a lot about the franchise that over the course of four years of Twilight screenings, the demographic makeup of the audience has shifted from squealing high-school girls crushing on chiseled Teen Beat dreamboats to to sketchy soccer moms drooling over glistening hard-abbed boy-meat. Most of the original teenage audience has grown up, exited their Twilight phase, and gone to college, leaving their tattered Edward Cullen posters hanging on their walls; it’s their mothers, who might have gotten into Twilight as a way to connect to their daughters, that are suspended in a state of cross-legged arrested development. They get older, but Jacob Black’s abs stay the same.

The franchise itself has been achingly paced from the beginning; eight hours of screen time could’ve been reduced to an hour and a half if only they’d stripped the franchise of the hung-mouth stares and confessions of devotion that read like the scribblings on the back of a love-sick brain-damaged 12-year-old girl’s notebook. Indeed, the very first line in Breaking Dawn Part 2, after Bella wakes up from her human-to-vampire transformation, is “You’re so beautiful,” delivered by Edward with all the enthusiasm of an Aspergian asthmatic rehearsing pick-up lines in front of a mirror.

Part 2 picks up just as Bella is crawling out from her vampire chrysalis. Her eyes are bright red, and her face is a little more alabaster, but she is otherwise the same Bella, carrying around her perpetually bored expression, as though she’s sniffing farts and remains unimpressed with their aroma. After frolicking through the woods like a meth-addled Forrest Gump in a race to blow out the spring’s first dandelions, snarling unconvincingly at humans and sucking blood out of the hickey-holes of the wildlife, Bella is disturbed to find that Jacob — who suddenly smells to her like a wet dog swimming in sour milk — is weirdly protective of her newborn daughter, a CGI-creation that appears to be the Goth version of the E*Trade baby.

Turns out, Jacob’s imprinted upon Renesnmee, a “wolf thing” that means he’s biologically required to watch over and protect her until there is grass on the field, at which point he and his lupine manhood plan to play ball. Bella is at first unhappy with the development, but soon learns that it’s beneficial to have free child care from an inbred two-by-four while Edward fucks the last trace of humanity out of her.

There are complications, however. Their daughter, Renesmee, is half human and half vampire, and in a world where vampires are forced to remain in the closet, it’s not good to have a doddering child with a thirst for human blood, a flappy mouth, and no impulse control messing it up for everyone else. Naturally, the Volturi get wind of Renesmee and plan for a showdown with the Cullen clan as soon as the snow falls.

That gives the Cullens — who have joined forces with the Wolves, on account of Jacob’s interspecies crush — to develop their powers. It turns out, they’re not just vampires; they’re like X-Men draculas, and as the Cullens collect allies from across the planet , they hone their abilities to manipulate the elements, bro-tase the enemy with their fingers, read each other’s minds, and — in the case of Bella — develop her shield powers: If Bella concentrates really hard and looks like she’s trying to pass a human head out of her ass, she can defend the Cullens from the wicked powers of those fiendish Volturi scamps.

The entire film, in fact maybe the entire series, is building toward that huge, spectacular showdown where the Cullens and their allies plan to defend Edward’s family “Everyone deserves to fall in love with whomever they want,” Carlisle says, as though campaigning for Washington to become the first state in the Union to allow for Vampire-Human marriage.

However, the biggest problem with Breaking Dawn Part 2, besides the fact that every single second of watching it feels like f*cking a fire ant-hill while someone is yanking out your nose hairs, is that seven-and-a-half hours of excruciating Mormon house-wife porn is all leading toward one spectacular head-ripping melee of cape-wearing, round-house kicking dildos and none of it counts. I won’t spoil it for you, except to say that the only 20 minutes of gleeful, joyous fist-pumping display of vampire-killing in the whole exhausting Quadrilogy doesn’t. f*cking. count. For a blithesome 20 minutes, Michael Sheen showed the Twilight world what it’s like to witness a real actor before the screenwriter kicked us in our apple sacks and threw us back into abyss where Taylor Lautner’s career will go to die. It is one of the most shamelessly cheap, frustratingly terrible endings ever put to film, like having mind-blowing sex only to discover, once the lights have been turned on, that you’ve been buggering your goddamn pillow the whole time.

It’s a fitting end, however, to the Twilight series, which has been nothing but four years of interminable hype building toward crushing disappointment. It’s a banal, brain-dead series, an epically tragic love story with no goddamn tragedy to speak of. The final film, like the series as a whole, is a hollow, soporific experience full of characters who only come to life in the minds of the middle-aged women hours after the movie has ended when they’re lying beneath the Edward and Jacob posters in their daughters’ rooms dying to feel something, anything, but malaise and blighted hope.

The 25 Best Remakes of the Last 25 Years, Presented Without Comment

25. Father of the Bride

24. Funny Games

23. War of the Worlds

22. Hairspray

21. King Kong

20. Little Shop of Horrors

19. The Thomas Crown Affair

18. The Birdcage

17. The Italian Job

16. Freaky Friday

15. Fright Night

14. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

13. Bram Stoker’s Dracula

12. Let Me In

11. Insomnia

10. Cape Fear

9. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

8. The Ring

7. Dawn of the Dead

6. 13 Assassins

5. Ocean’s 11

4. 3:10 Yuma

3. The Fly

2. True Grit

1. The Departed

2

Dustin Rowles  — Look at the Flowers  

It may sound morbid, but the scene in which I connected most with my favorite character was when Carol made arguably the hardest choice that’s ever been made on the series — and easily her hardest choice — and shot and killed Lizzie. Lizzie was like a daughter to Carol, but given Lizzie’s mental state — especially after having killed her sister so she could have a zombie playmate — Carol didn’t have any choice. She did what she needed to survive, and what she needed to keep everyone else alive. 
It also put into perspective, for Tyreese, why Carol had killed his girlfriend: It wasn’t malicious or evil. It was necessary. It’s a perfect encapsulation of what it means to live in a zombie apocalypse: 
No matter how difficult or emotionally traumatic, the characters do what they have to do to live another day, another week, or another year. 

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Jameson Brown Sophia’s Death 

Up to this point, I had been watching the show as just a regular show that was in my TV rotation. This episode, and particularly this final scene, took it to the next level for me. It’s still the only scene where every character knows exactly what has to happen and they know it is going to be painful.

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Jamie FreveleSophia’s Death  

Carol is by far my favorite character on the show. and while it’s her growth as a character and her strength, it was her most vulnerable moment ever that really, really killed me. 
And that was when her daughter Sofia emerged from the Greene’s farmhouse as a zombie and she had to be shot. 
It was the culmination of one of the series’ draggiest periods, but it was one of the most heartbreaking things on the show, and I distinctly remember sobbing while watching Zombie Sofia and her mother just crumble. 
But after everything Carol had been through at that point, she chose to pick up the pieces and become the show’s biggest badass. 
She went from being a put-upon, abused wife and mother to someone who used her maternal instincts to care for the people who were still trying to survive. 
She moved on with amazing grace and even though she’s done some things that others might question, she’s only doing what she has to do to preserve what precious life is left. 
Even if she has to scare the sh*t out of small children. 

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Second runner-up: 

Daryl standing up for Glenn against his own brother, whom he later had to mourn and shoot when he became a zombie. 
That was a great arc, too, and it’s awesome that my two favorite characters have a cute, little friendship. 

Seriously, I’d watch the Carol & Daryl spin-off in a hot minute. 

November, 2015 - UPROXX