TV review: The Young Pope

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(Caidyn)

3/5

Sometimes, I get little trials for a weekend of different networks. A couple of weeks ago, I got HBO. Like usual, I scrolled through what they have available to watch and I found this one. And I suddenly remembered that I had desperately wanted to watch it when it was airing and now I had the chance to watch it.

Boy was it fun.

It follows the story of Lenny, a man who becomes Pope Pius XIII. He was abandoned as a child at an orphanage, something that haunts him his whole life. Sister Mary is the nun who took care of him. She’s his most trusted advisor and a woman he sees as a mother.

The plot was a bit thin at times and I found it difficult to follow (probably because I was doing other things while watching it) but I still found it fun. The scenes were hilarious. The cinematography was great. The costumes were amazing. It really felt like I was in the older days where the pope really ran the world. Lenny/Pius was trying to get back to those days through his papacy.

And he’s doing it in style.

Legit, yo.

As I said, it was funny. I was cackling at the opening scene with Lenny’s first speech to the Catholic nation. Then, it was just a gorgeous show with rich scenes. I can’t picture anyone but Jude Law playing Lenny. Same with Diane Keaton as Sister Mary.

Her sleeping shirt.

While it’s not a show for everyone, I think it’s worth a try. There’s not a lot of sex in it, surprisingly, and it really follows the internal journey of Lenny. And his move in what many of us would see is a bad direction.

 

 

Black Mirror – Season Three (Part 2)

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Black Mirror – Season One

Black Mirror – Season Two + Christmas Special

Black Mirror – Season Three (Part 1)

Caidyn will be in blue.
Chantel will be in purple.


San Junipero

So, Chantel loved this episode. Because it’s gay. Is that a spoiler? I don’t think so since Chantel told me she only watched this episode because she knew something about it, so I assumed it was gay right away.

*taps mic* Ahem, first of all, sexuality isn’t a spoiler. Second of all, yeah this episode is queer as hell with two ladies who end up together and it’s ahmazing. It’s beautiful, the music is fantastic, the setting is fantastic, and it’s unlike any other Black Mirror episode. By that I mean, it’s not about the dangers of technology. It isn’t set in a world that’s some kind of dystopia. It’s just a beautiful love story and my queer heart cannot take it.

Yes, yes. No need to remind about your most famous Goodreads update where you ranted about how it’s not a spoiler or whatever. I get that, obviously. I want to know if a character is ace or trans, so yeah.

I did love the music because IT IS SET IN THE 80S. And it was a very tame episode compared to the one we had just come off of, something I appreciated personally. It was a very sweet episode, a lot like “Be Right Back”.

That’s correct, I am an internet sensation. Bullshit. You just jealous.

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Yo, I don’t need your attitude.

As soon as I heard this episode had two women falling in love, my interest went from non-existent to 1000. That happens frequently in my life. It’s just a scale of meh to YAS.

Anyway, this episode is set in the 80’s and I’d like to talk about that for a moment. Neither of us grew up in the 80’s we are too young for that, but whenever I see the 80s portrayed in any kind of media it’s very nostalgic. Stranger Things, anyone? We remember the music, the clothes, the hair. These are things that defined the 80s and they are symbols we recognize from the 80s, but I think there are a lot of things that are glossed over. Like Reagan, like the AIDS crisis, and a lot of other things that aren’t coming to me. Instead, we always get a version of the 80s that has a bit of sheen to it. While this make sense in this episode, I think that’s safe to say without giving too much away, but it was just something I thought about. Sometimes when we look back at something, we see the good and not the bad that came with it.

Anything straight is meh. Queer is YAS. Especially queer women. Your little homosexual heart.

Oh, I love 80s music and the setting of this was mostly in that period, along with some others. I don’t want to go too far into the plot since it gets a bit spoilery when we start going further, but it’s a really sweet episode. No twists that will slaughter you or anything like that. Two women deciding to start a relationship against, literally, all odds.

I think the thing I appreciate the most about this episode is how smartly they paired it with the last episode. I don’t think I could have handled another episode that fucked with me like that one.

That is my motto. Queer is YAS. Learn it, memorize it, commit it to your memory.

It was one of the sweetest episodes of TV I’ve seen. If someone could just do an anthology tv series about queer people that would be the fucking dream. Anyone? Any takers? I NEED this in my life. Pretty sure that Ryan Murphy is doing that with his new series about 80s dancers. I already know about that and cannot wait. 

When I originally watched Shut Up and Dance, I was so devastated and wanted to curl up into a ball. However, I watched San Junipero and it warmed my heart and made everything better. It was a sweet dream after a nightmare and I agree, the placement was brilliant.

OH, before I forget, can I just say Yorkie is the cutest fucking person to ever walk on this Earth. That is all.

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Yorkie is on the right

They are pretty cute.

They are both cute. Not to mention, it’s an interracial relationship which gives me so much life.

An interracial, queer relationship that passes all bounds of age, too.

I’ma let you speak but San Junipero was the best episode of all time. *drops mic*

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Shut up, Chanye and let’s move on.

If we must.

Men Against Fire

This one sucked. Least favorite. So boring despite the premise being super interesting.

I hate to say it, but this episode was very White Bear-ish. It presented an interesting premise and then spent the next hour being boring as all shit. The twist while interesting, didn’t seem to have any impact at all. It was revealed to us and I understood what was going on. It just was poorly executed. This show has so many great episodes and then we get duds like this and fucking WHITE BEAR.

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It really was White Bear-ish. Boring and then had a big point about it, like White Bear had. White Bear focused on crime and punishment whereas this focused on the morality of war and genocide. Because, this is focused on a basic genocide, where they see these horrific things they call roaches that are human… but not. But, are they really human? Is it okay to kill them off without even trying to communicate with them? However, the way it was told felt like a ton of info-dumping and it was like old school dystopians where the protagonist somehow gets to the head of things and the head tells them everything about the society they’re in.

The premise is interesting. How much do you have to dehumanize someone in order to kill them without remorse? What would you do if it was your life or theirs? It’s an interesting idea with interesting questions, but the main character/actor was as interesting as a bag of rocks. I didn’t care about him. The main female character was extremely masculine in her behavior was incredibly annoying and by the time the twist was revealed, it didn’t matter. It wouldn’t salvage the episode for me. I know the ending was supposed to be so meaningful and it didn’t hit me at all. Bummer, but they can’t all be perfect.

It felt like a parody of military life and the people in the military in conflict zones. It didn’t feel realistic to me. Like, sure, these people are around, but it didn’t strike me as realistic. And, you’re right. The twist had lost me. It didn’t help that I had started figuring it out earlier in the episode and I kind of checked out.

They didn’t give us any indication what they were fighting for and honestly, I don’t think they were fighting anything. Which isn’t compelling at all if you are going to do a story featuring the military.

Shooting and fighting makes things interesting, but it didn’t for this since it had a wafer-thin plot.

Hated in the Nation

I did not like this episode. Granted, it was better than “Men Against Fire” as it was far more interesting and I truly wanted to know what the fuck was happening. The answers I go, however, it didn’t do it for me in the slightest. I thought it was silly and stupid. That’s all I’m going to say about that because I don’t want to give anything away. For me, this episode was trying to do suspense, mystery, and horror. But it came off goofy to me. I will say that the one thing I did like was the badass main female characters. One who was a lead detective and she was awesome. I’ll say that about it, but I think that’s pretty much the only positive I have.

We can’t talk about much because everything in the episode unfolds piece by piece, so it would kind of ruin it if we just went and said everything. I definitely disagree with you. I thought it was tense and interesting. I wondered what would happen and how they would solve the mystery since it could be anyone at all. It also had horror elements that worked for me, and I know it worked for you, too, since you got freaked out by a few things.

I also liked how it had a feel of an evolution of “Shut Up and Dance” to it. The next step for the people who were in charge of blackmailing the people involved in that.

They had my attention and focus up until a certain point. Then I was not into it at all anymore. I think this episode did present some interesting questions, ones we can’t go into and I liked that part of it too, but ultimately I wasn’t a fan. There are so many better episodes of this show and even better episodes that we watched in season three. I think Black Mirror can do plot very well sometimes. In “Shut Up and Dance”I was on the edge of my seat and it was incredibly effective. I found nothing compelling about what was going on in this episode until it was nearly over.

Maybe this comes down to the fact that you don’t like mystery or horror like I do. Those are genres I actively search out while you don’t. That’s not a bad thing, as we know, but mystery holds my attention way better than something queer because I’m naturally attuned to it and have been forever.

And for me, since I was around 13 I always sought out queer content. That’s what I wanted to watch and I soaked in as much of it as I could. It holds a special place in my heart whereas I really don’t like horror and the only time I like mysteries is if there is some kind of queer element. Honestly, throughout the whole episode I wanted Karin and Blue to get together. That is what I was thinking of the whole time.

Uh, and from the age of nine, I dragged my parents to go to London Dungeon, got the shit scared out of me, and loved it. So. I think there is a difference between our tastes and that’s what it comes down to for this episode. I can see how you thought it wasn’t as well done as the past ones (and I agree; my comparison to “Shut Up and Dance” was a weak one) but it was still a solid episode for me.

Although, I could totally get behind Karin and Blue as a couple.

Which is fine. We clearly don’t like the same things and that’s okay. We’ve pretty much agreed up until this point and it’s nice to know that we can disagree and really it all comes down to genre and tone. It just seemed like a weaker episode overall because we had episodes like “Shut Up and Dance” and “San Junipero”. Those two episodes were far superior and while “Shut Up and Dance” was suspenseful and kept you in the dark for a long time it was very focused. This was very broad in its scope. It wasn’t just about one kid, it was about society. I personally will always gravitate toward the stories about individual people rather than society.

YAS! If anyone ever tells you that representation doesn’t matter. They can go fuck themselves because it absolutely does.

Another difference between us. I find meditations on society fascinating. Love stories about individual people, but I also love me a really fucked up society.

Okay but they’re probably already fucking themselves tbh.

Episode Rankings

Caidyn’s rankings

  1. Hated in the Nation
  2. San Junipero
  3. Men Against Fire

Chantel’s rankings

  1. San Junipero (fucking duh)
  2. Hated in the Nation
  3. Men Against Fire