A screen-cap from Twin Peaks
TV reviews

What have you been watching? Including GLOW, Riviera, Logan, Twin Peaks and Ronny Chieng

It’s “What have you been watching?”, my chance to tell you what movies and TV I’ve been watching recently and your chance to recommend anything you’ve been watching.

Redesigning and migrating TMINE took up quite a bit of my time this week, so I didn’t cast my net as wide as I’d hoped in watching new TV. All the same, you’ll be excited to hear that I’ve managed to give two other new shows at try, as well as a movie, and I’ll be reviewing The Mist (US: Spike) in the next couple of days, too.

After the jump, a look at the latest episodes of Doctor Who, Ronny Chieng: International Student and Twin Peaks, as well as the season finale of Silicon Valley. One of those could offer some of the finest visuals TV has ever seen.

But first…

GLOW (Netflix)
Slightly weird half-hour comedy based on the genuinely real 80s phenomenon of GLOW (Gorgeous Ladies Of Wrestling), which has already been the subject of movies and TV shows but here sees aspiring but really rather terrible actress Alison Brie (Community) almost as the point of doing porn to make ends meet before her agent gives her one last potential gig – a new cable TV sports show in which she would be a wrestler. Together with several other oddball women, she auditions to take part, but it’s not until she ends up in a catfight with best friend Betty Gilpin (Masters of Sex, Nurse Jackie) that she gets her chance to appear in the ring.

I got through the first episode without laughing much, except at the over-the-top attempts at 80s LA fashions, which all seemed to be takes on Jane Fonda aerobics videos. But it was amiable enough and silly enough that I’ll at least try episode two.

Riviera (UK: Sky Atlantic)
Glossy French-set, French-filmed thriller in which Julia Stiles (the Jason Bourne movies, Dexter) is apparently happily married to super-rich Anthony LaPaglia (Murder One, Without A Trace) when his yacht gets blown up off the coast of Monaco. The result is… revelations! Maybe LaPaglia got his money through dodgy means. Maybe he was having an affair and slept with ‘party girls’.

All the episodes have been released but I’ve only managed the first, rather insipid one so far. Stiles is fine, but spends most of her time having passive aggressive sit-downs with LaPaglia’s ex-wife Lena Olin or one of Olin’s kids (Misfits‘ Iwan Rheon and Les témoins (Witnesses)’ Roxane Duran). Attempts to inject excitement into all the iciness come from having Amr Waked (Lucy, Engrenages (Spiral), Marco Polo) run around a bit or by promising some excitement soon but never actually producing anything.

Basically, the usual glossy Sky fare with a good cast list (and Neil Jordan in the writing credits) but only two big names who actually stick around for the main action.

Logan (2017)
The X-Men meet gritty reality and the cowboy genre, as we flashforward to 2029. Most of the world’s mutants are dead, with Wolverine and Professor X the only big names left alive thanks to a highly successful stamping out campaign. Even so, Wolverine’s dying from adamantine poisoning and Professor X has dementia over which he’s losing control, causing all manner of problems for anyone and any towns that happen to be in his vicinity. Into the mix comes a woman with a girl who has Wolverine-like abilities, asking our hero to protect her from evil Richard E Grant and the cybernetic Reavers.

It’s basically Shane with superheroes, but a clever piece of work that is sparing with the action but nevertheless has an awful lot of bloody stabbing. It pokes fun at its predecessors as being (literally) comic book fun, divorced from the real world in which people suffer and die, but manages to still enjoy the trappings of the superhero genre.

It’s all a bit bleak though and beyond a couple of cool scenes, nothing to really unique.

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Weekly Wonder Woman: Wonder Woman #24, Wonder Woman (Steve Trevor) #1, Justice League (Rebirth) #22, Dark Knight III #9

Back on Wonder Woman Wednesday after a two week absence, it’s Weekly Wonder Woman – reading Wonder Woman comics now, so you can decide whether to fork out for the trade paperbacks once the series have been cancelled due to low readership.

The past fortnight, you’ve probably been off watching Wonder Woman, judging by the half-billion dollar box office it’s now done worldwide, although not if you live in Algeria, Libya, Tunisia or one of various other countries that don’t like Israel that much. Warner Bros were a bit surprised by how well the movie did, in fact, expecting something much more modest, but it’s now all action stations to capitalise on the movie’s success. Geoff Johns is now working with director Patty Jenkins to write a sequel and rumour has it that Joss Whedon is currently doing lots of reshoots to add more Wonder Woman to Justice League.

Half a billion dollars is apparently enough to impress the Library of Congress in the US to have a special laying down ceremony for the script involving nothing other than Lynda Carter.

In other movie news, the biopic of Wonder Woman creators William Moulton Marston, Elizabeth Holloway Marston and Olive Byrne, Professor Marston & The Wonder Women, now has a US release date (October 27).

In the comic book world, however, the big news is that former Wonder Woman writer Gail Simone is revisiting the character in a new six-issue series starting in September. Simone, who’s spent some time writing Red Sonja, marries that recent barbarian focus with the new run to give us… a Wonder Woman-Conan The Barbarian crossover!

“I love crossovers, I love Wonder Woman, and being able to bring the undisputed greatest warriors of the DCU and Robert E. Howard’s Hyborian Age together for the very first time is a dream come true,” says Simone. “A major draw is getting to reunite with the great Aaron Lopresti, whose very favorite things to draw are Wonder Woman and barbarians. Its blades and bracelets, wizards and wonder and I couldn’t be more delighted.”

Conan and Wonder Woman

Meanwhile, remember how I mused a month ago about whether DC’s Rebirth reboot had wiped out everything from nu52 continuity or at least rendered it nothing more than divine fiction, including Diana’s brother Jason? Turns out, that’s still canon because starting from issue #31 of Wonder Woman, James Robinson, Carlo Pagulayan, and Emanuela Lupacchino will be starting a six-month run entitled ‘Children of the Gods’ that will be focused on Jason (and that will also guest-star Giganta):

Spinning out of the pages of DC UNIVERSE: REBIRTH and JUSTICE LEAGUE: DARKSEID WAR, Robinson, Pagulayan and Lupacchino will answer one of the biggest questions of the year: Who is Wonder Woman’s brother? Taken away from Themyscira in the dead of night, the mysterious Jason (the only male ever born on the island) has been hidden somewhere far from the sight of gods and men… but his life and Wonder Woman’s are about to intersect in a terrifying way, bringing them face-to-face with a cosmic threat they never imagined!

Wonder Woman #31

But that’s all the news for now. After the jump, we’ll look at the past fortnight’s new releases: Wonder Woman #24, Wonder Woman (Steve Trevor) #1, Justice League (Rebirth) #22 and Dark Knight III #9.

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News: 24: Legacy cancelled; Loosely Exactly Nicole, Insatiable rescued; + more

Black Panther poster

Film trailers

Internet TV

International TV

  • Annalise Basso, Maura Tierney, Essie Davis et al join Channel 4 (UK)/Amazon’s Philip K Dick’s Electric Dreams


New UK TV shows

New UK TV show casting

  • Indira Varma, Luke Treadaway and Neil Maskell to star in Channel 4’s The Truth


US TV show casting

New US TV shows

New US TV show casting

Weekly Wonder Woman: Wonder Woman (2017), Trinity Annual #1, Wonder Woman Annual #1

Yep, it’s that time again – our weekly round-up of all the Wonder Woman comics out in the past week. I might also mention and review a certain movie. Or two. Or even three.

As Saturday was officially ‘Wonder Woman Day’, as well as this week’s release of two annuals featuring our Diana – Trinity Annual #1 and Wonder Woman (Rebirth) Annual #1 – issue #1 of Wonder Woman Rebirth got a free reissue to lure people into Greg Rucka’s ongoing reboot.

Special Edition Wonder Woman #1

I couldn’t spot anything different, other than the currently standard interviews with members of the cast of a certain movie, but I might be wrong. The other releases I’ll talk about after the jump.

We’ve also had a couple of trailers released for forthcoming Wonder Woman-related movies. Due out on July 26, Lego Super Hero Girls: Brain Drain sees our miniature heroines losing their memories and having to retrace their steps to work out why:

Meanwhile, we have the real-life story of Wonder Woman’s creator(s), Professor Marston & The Wonder Women:

Professor Marston and the Wonder Women

No release date yet, but that might change quite quickly…

Right. Got your Wonder Woman Cookies of Truth ready? Then let’s talk about a certain movie. Full review after the jump (and I do mean full), but first just a couple of news pieces.

George Perez, who rebooted Wonder Woman back in the 80s for the start of Volume 2, has also been discussing not just that process but also what he thinks of Wonder Woman.

And a whole bunch of the great and the good in the comics world have been discussing what Wonder Woman means to them, too, including Perez, Phil Jiminez, Dan Didio and Shea Fontana:

But finally, the time has come. Let’s talk about Wonder Woman.

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