Wednesday, 21 May 2014

I never think of the future. It comes soon enough

Today's blog title comes from the immortal words of one of the 20th Century's most renowned physicists, Albert Einstein. It is oddly fitting in two ways - one, there is an event close at hand that I am trying my damndest not to think about but might tell you all about one day and two, tomorrow is the release day for X-Men: Days of Future Past, which I intend to squeal about along with a couple of other things in this wonderful blog post.

Firstly and on the subject of science (good I brought Einstein, eh?), the weekly (or at this point, fortnightly as I failed to conduct experiments last week) update of the entirely scientific progress of my caffeine experiments. As stated in previous posts, today's experiment was Test 3: 2xCaffeinated Beverages, 1xSleep Deprived Achilleus. The replication of thee events of April 28th, 2014, when Sonic sadly left me and our fine bromance behind. And the results...


No incidents of caffeination hysteria. Even though at one point, in such a rush to help my barista, Cougar, make drinks I nearly put the ticket for a cappuccino under the coffee machine instead of the small glass it was supposed to be poured into (stopped myself and rectified my mistake in time though!) and then burst into giggles about this, that was the closest I came. So, at the end of Test 3, the events of April 28th can be considered indicative of things to come, not a fluke. Next up, the final test - Test 4. The gamma radiation experiment. 2xCaffeinated Beverages, 1xNon-Sleep Deprived Achilleus. You might want to pray to whichever gods aren't listening, this could be the big one.

That said, I'm fairly confident the entire scene will pass without incident. But we'll find out next week.

Now, on to other matters. First all, time to squeal about some impending Marvel movies. Starting with tomorrow's release, X-Men: Days of Future Past. Before I go any further, it's unlikely to be an issue but I'm going to discuss X-Men: First Class and events at the end. If you haven't seen it and want to avoid spoilers, just flip ahead a little. Only going to be one paragraph...

I'll admit now, I'm not as hugely into the X-Men universe as I am with the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That said, I do thoroughly enjoy them. X-Men: First Class was absolutely fantastic. James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender nailed Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr, though I admit that I wish they hadn't become nemeses already. It would have been nice to see their friendship develop over the course of a movie or two, then see their paths diverge wildly. That said, it was still awesome and they do a fantastic job.

With all that said, I am immensely looking forward to Days of Future Past. In part to see McAvoy and Fassbender once again, especially now that Fassbender has gone fully Magneto. But mostly, I'm waiting to squeal about how awesome Peter Dinklage is going to be as Bolivar Trask.

Now anyone who has watched Game of Thrones (especially the last couple of episodes of season four) - or in fact anyone who has seen Peter Dinklage acting in absolutely anything - will know how spectacularly brilliant he is. His portrayal of Tyrion Lannister is spot on and he makes us love him even more than we loved him in the books. Which is a hell of a lot. So with him set to be one of Days of Future Past's central villains, I'm incredibly excited.

Also under the Marvel umbrella, but this time firmly in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the movie due at the end of July/start of August, Guardians of the Galaxy. At first, I was sceptical. I had only seen Chris Pratt in Parks and Recreation. I wasn't 100% convinced he would carry it off. Not that I've even read Guardians of the Galaxy or have any prior knowledge of it at all. I mistakenly thought Chris Pratt might be part of the school of actors who coast by on comedic skills alone. Now while the jury is still mostly out until the summer, from the trailers, I think it - and Chris Pratt - are going to be frakkin' excellent. Plus, the song they use in the trailers ("Hooked on a Feeling" - Blue Swede) is extremely catchy and jaunty. I love it. It's one of my happy songs. Keep listening to it on a loop, probably going to incur the wrath of my housemates.

With movies dispensed of, I'm going to take a moment to talk about some television. Namely, a series I have just finished watching called Alphas. Tragically cut short after two seasons and ending on that most tedious of things to cancel a whole series on, a frakkin' CLIFFHANGER, it was a SyFy TV show revolving a group of people with, essentially, superpowers. These people are called "Alphas" and apparently, according to some characters in the show, represent the next evolution of humanity.

My feelings on Alphas aren't necessarily mixed as they are subdued. I did really enjoy it, with an absolute stand-out performance from Ryan Cartwright (apparently known for the role of Vincent Nigel Murray in Bones) as autistic Alpha Gary Bell, who can perceive and manipulate electromagnetic wavelengths. Also, Firefly alumnus Summer Glau pops up in a couple of episodes. This time not playing someone who is drastically crazy, as she seems to do from time to time. Slash most of the time. Anyway, this show is definitely worth watching and is tenuously established as being in the same universe as Warehouse 13, which in turn is in the same universe as A Town Called Eureka. One big, happy, SyFy family. It's a shame Alphas hasn't been granted a decent, cliffhanger-resolving farewell.

Next up on my TV agenda is Defiance. So far, I've only watched three episodes, but I'm thoroughly enjoying it. Visually stunning, pretty good writing, great performances thus far, intriguing characters and world. But most of all, epic Bear McCreary-composed score. If I haven't already, I will one day go into length about my affinity for Bear McCreary's music. For now, I will say Defiance is shaping up nicely and I hope to report more good things about the show in the future.

For now, I leave with the song in my head.

(Song of the Mind: Hooked on a Feeling - Blue Swede).

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