Big Finish Review-Torchwood: Thirst Trap

In the heart of Cardiff, a new dating app has taken the city by storm, offering users the chance to find their perfect match in just 20 minutes. But there’s a twist – once the time is up, they may never see their date again.

As more and more people try out the app, something strange begins to happen. Everyone seems to be going on the same dates, with the same activities, conversation topics, and even jokes. It’s almost as if the app is controlling their every move. Normally, Sgt. Andy Davidson would be the first to investigate, but he’s busy with his own date.

Torchwood has often been praised for its dark and gritty tone, exploring themes of loss, trauma, and alien invasion. However, this particular episode takes a different approach. It’s a lighthearted romp through the world of dating apps and the strange things that can happen when people put their trust in technology.

Despite the departure from the show’s usual tone, the actors still deliver standout performances. Tom Price and Kai Owen, who play Sgt. Andy Davidson and Rhys Williams respectively, are particularly impressive in their portrayal of two men caught up in a whirlwind of romantic comedy hijinks. Their chemistry is palpable, and their lightning-fast shifts from serious to lovesick are both hilarious and heartwarming.

The supporting cast also shines, with Natalia Hinds, Sunjay Midda, and Rebecca Trehearn each bringing their unique flair to their roles. Whether they’re playing matchmakers, hard-working council workers, or hapless police officers, they all add to the story’s infectious energy and sense of fun.

Tom Price, who also stars in the adventure, shows his versatility as a writer with a fluid and brilliant script that perfectly complements his acting skills. The writing captures the humorous and whimsical aspects of the story, while also exploring deeper themes of human connection and the perils of relying too heavily on technology.

David O’Mahony’s direction keeps the story moving at a brisk pace, while Blair Mowat’s music and Shane O’Byrne’s sound design help to create an engaging atmosphere.

Overall, this is a well-crafted and enjoyable story. A must-listen for any Torchwood fan looking for a fun 45-minute adventure.

Torchwood contains material, that may not be suitable for younger audiences.

Torchwood: Thirst Trap is available for purchase from Big Finish.


Film review-Tetris

Taron Egerton shines in this film that ingeniously blends nostalgia with a gripping thriller. The story opens with Henk Rogers making a pitch to a bored Japanese bank executive about the true potential of what he’s selling. As Henk narrates his globe-trotting journey to acquire the rights to a video game, the audience is treated to stunningly produced sequences that are seamlessly edited by Colin Goudie, Ben Mills, and Martin Walsh. However, the constant globe-hopping can be wearisome for some viewers.

As the story moves to Russia in 1988, director Jon S. Baird expertly slows down the pace, building tension and suspense. Written by Nick Pink, the opening portion of the film sets the stage for what happens to Henk when he seeks the sales rights from the game’s creator, Alexey Pajitnov, stumbling into a dangerous hornet’s nest where Communist Party security officials, Japanese interests, a software salesman, and Nintendo all compete against each other to acquire the rights to publish a video game that would become a worldwide smash.

With multiple layers of legitimate business dealings cloaked in duplicitous and criminal activity, it is challenging to decipher how much of this “inspired by a true story” movie is, in fact, true and how much is pumped-up artifice. However, by the end of the movie, you won’t care because the story and the characters are that compelling.

Taron Egerton portrays a good-hearted family man who is married to a loving and supportive wife, played by Ayane Nagabuchi, with multiple adorable children. Henk’s desire to secure his family’s financial future is palpable, and his loyalty to his employees and his small software company in Japan is commendable. The supporting cast is equally colourful, and the film moves at a pace that slowly picks up speed, resembling a good video game that is irresistible to play.

Overall, the film is a nostalgic and thrilling ride that expertly blends both genres into a captivating story.

Tetris will be available to stream from Apple TV+ on March 31st.


Comic review-Superman #2, The Night of the Parasite

Superman #2, “The Night of the Parasite,” delivers a thrilling continuation of the epic storyline introduced in the first issue. With eight different covers to choose from, three in particular stand out.

Jamal Campbell’s standard cover introduces a new character, Marilyn Moonlight, who easily restrains Superman. While her name and appearance are intriguing, her motives remain unclear. Campbell expertly captures Superman’s facial expressions, heightening the tension and anticipation. The interior artwork is exceptional, creating a sense of fear and urgency without resorting to grotesque imagery. The horror movie tropes are balanced by the colorful artwork, reminiscent of Superman: The Animated Series.

Writer Joshua Williamson and letterer Ariana Maher deliver a non-stop thrill ride of an issue. Parasite’s evolved powers turn his victims into more Parasites, spreading throughout Metropolis like a virus. This new take on Parasite is both brilliant and terrifying. It’s also refreshing to see other characters, such as Marilyn Moonlight, receive leveled-up powers. The introduction of new characters adds to the overall mystery and excitement of the story, culminating in a cliffhanger ending that sets up a Superman story unlike any other.


Review The Last of us series 1

The Last of Us television adaptation is a triumph in every sense of the word, exceeding expectations in every way. Not only does it successfully translate the beloved game into a television series, but it also delivers exceptional performances from its talented cast.

Pedro Pascal delivers a soulful and nuanced portrayal of the protagonist Joel, showcasing the character’s complex inner turmoil and his journey of redemption. Meanwhile, Bella Ramsey’s portrayal of Ellie is a revelation, injecting the character with fierce independence and a dangerous edge that perfectly captures her spirit.

But the exceptional acting doesn’t stop with the leads. The series also boasts standout performances from supporting actors such as Melanie Lynskey, Storm Reid, and Lamar Johnson. In the poignant third episode, which stands out as a beautiful and emotionally resonant piece of television. Nick Offerman and Murray Bartlett deliver unforgettable performances that anchor the show.

The pacing is masterful, with individual character studies that add depth to the narrative. It manages to capture the essence of the acclaimed video game. Expertly. It’s clear that the creative team behind it poured their hearts and souls into the project.

The marriage between the game and HBO is a match made in heaven, with the network’s penchant for depth over spectacle and the game’s sophisticated storytelling. The result is a work of art that sets a new standard for video game adaptations.

Overall, The Last of Us is a stunning showcase of acting talent, bringing to life complex characters and their emotional journeys in a world of moral ambiguity and constant danger.

The Last of us is available to watch on Sky and Now TV.


Comic review-Superman: Lost #1

In 1938, the world got its first glimpse of Superman and Lois Lane in Action Comics #1, which forever altered the world of entertainment. A plethora of media has allowed fans to revel in the couple’s adventures.

However, it is in the pages of comics where the duo truly thrived. To mark their 85th anniversary, the esteemed writer Christopher Priest, accompanied by the talented artist Carlo Pagulayan, are reuniting to scrutinise the relationship between Superman and Lois. In this maxi-series, our hero has been lost on an adventure for two decades, yet in Lois’s eyes, he has only been away for a few hours. Such a twist promises to offer comic book enthusiasts a fresh perspective on the beloved characters.

Messrs. Priest and Pagulayan’s past collaboration on Deathstroke landed them an Eisner nomination. Thus, one should expect nothing but the best from this dynamic duo. The notion of Superman leading an alternative life is wild and fascinating, and, with the freedom that comes with a maxi-series, there is ample scope for in-depth examination of the couple’s relationship. The art of Mr. Pagulayan, coupled with the inks of Mr. Jason Paz and the colours of Mr. Jeromy Cox, elevates the script to new heights and imbues the characters with a depth of emotion seldom seen in the comic book world. The variant covers by Mr. Lee Weeks are also a delight, capturing the emotions of Superman’s detachment and loss.

The interactions between Batman, Superman, and Lois form the heart of the narrative. Because her beloved had died, Priest has created a Lois who is reasonably furious, and because the man who has returned is not the same as the one she knew. Superman recognises the predicament and accepts responsibility for his actions, but the dynamic between Batman and Lois just heightens the tenseness. Each character receives due respect in Priest’s script, which gives them a voice that fits. The JLA functions as a unit, Lois expresses her rage, and Batman wrestles with his guilt.

This maxiseries’ opening issue is captivating and draws readers in right away. Every page reflects the creative team’s love and devotion for the narrative and characters, and the outcome is nothing short of a delight for comic book fans.


Review-Shazam! Fury of the Gods

The uneven quality of DC’s cinematic universe is no secret. The franchise’s films have ranged from critical darlings like “Wonder Woman” and “Shazam!” to box office disappointments such as “Justice League” and “Suicide Squad.” The constant reshuffling of creative teams, the departure of key players, and the lack of a cohesive vision have left the DCEU in a precarious position.

Unfortunately, “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” fails to recapture the spark that made its predecessor, which was a delightful addition to the DC Extended Universe. While attempting to replicate the charm and witty banter of the original, the sequel comes across as repetitive and uninspired. Director David F. Sandberg’s reliance on the franchise’s formulaic elements exposes its weaknesses, including subpar special effects, hackneyed dialogue, and underdeveloped villains.

The film follows Billy Batson, an orphan with a heart of gold, as he leads a team of superpowered foster siblings to battle Hespera and Kalypso, the daughters of the Greek titan Atlas. The novelty of kids in adult bodies quickly wears thin as the movie descends into a routine plot with little substance. Even the talents of Helen Mirren and Lucy Liu can’t elevate the two-dimensional villains beyond their clichéd roles. Although, Mirren is clearly having a blast with her indignant Hespera, and does delivers some of the film’s best laughs.

The constant switching between young and older actors playing the same characters feels jarring and hinders the emotional connection to the story. While Zachary Levi’s infectious energy as Shazam is still a highlight, the lack of character development and uneven pacing prevent the film from reaching its potential.

Despite some fun moments and a promising mid-credits scene, “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” ultimately falls short of its predecessor’s accomplishments. Its unremarkable storyline and reliance on familiar comic book tropes fail to set it apart from the crowded superhero genre.

“Shazam! Fury of the Gods” arrives at a time when the DCEU is in flux, and unfortunately, the film’s lack of originality and uneven execution may not bode well for the franchise’s future.


Film review-65

In 65, Scott Beck and Bryan Woods attempt to revive the horror adventure genre with a unique and ambitious survival story set on Earth, 65 million years ago, featuring indigenous dinosaurs as hostile creatures. The premise is intriguing and promises an exciting adventure for the audience. However, the film falls short of delivering a fully satisfying experience.

While emotional stakes are established for the characters, the film struggles to break out of a repetitive pattern of encounters and evade prehistoric predators. The quieter moments attempt to develop the characters’ rapport, but the humour feels out of place, and Koa’s transformation from helpless to survivor feels rushed.

Another issue with the film is the lack of a clear sense of place and visibility during the nighttime scenes, which detracts from the experience. However, the film has some entertaining moments, and Adam Driver’s performance as Mills provides a solid anchor for the story.

The potential for something greater in 65 remains untapped. The film could have fully embraced the absurdities of its plot and leaned into the retro charm of classic films like Planet of Dinosaurs. The serious tone of the film limits its ability to fully capture the adventure and excitement promised by the premise. Nonetheless, the film offers a unique and ambitious take on the horror adventure genre, and fans of the genre may still find elements to enjoy.


Review-Scream VI

Last year’s installment of the Scream franchise did not impress me much, as the approach taken by directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, known as “Radio Silence,” felt like a mere repetition of 2011’s Scream 4. Nonetheless, the movie had its merits, particularly in its endeavor to uphold the legacy of the late Wes Craven. However, Scream VI, also directed by Radio Silence and written by James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick, seems to have no new ideas to present, apart from one significant exception. Nevertheless, the sixth part of the series is exceptionally enjoyable as it presents a masterful and thrilling puzzle, even if it isn’t particularly groundbreaking.

The setting of the film has now moved to New York City, where Sam Carpenter (Melissa Barrera), her sister Tara (Jenna Ortega), and their best friends Mindy (Jasmin Savoy Brown) and Chad Meeks-Martin (Mason Gooding) are starting college. Sam accompanies Tara to look after her, hoping that a bigger city means that they are safe from Ghostface’s deadly attacks.

However, this proves not to be the case, as a new Ghostface appears, exhibiting an obsession with the previous nine killers. The FBI, led by Agent Kirby Reed (Hayden Panettiere), gets involved in the case, while Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) returns as a Ghostface expert. Sidney Prescott, the previous final girl, is absent from the story.

The exclusion of Sidney’s character turns out to be a good thing, as it forces the writers to focus on the other characters. Sam, Tara, Mindy, and Chad take the center stage, and they are given enough time to make an impression. Melissa Barrera shines as Sam, and her portrayal brings depth to the character. Jenna Ortega, Jasmin Savoy Brown, and Mason Gooding are also noteworthy in their performances. Hayden Panettiere’s return as Kirby is a pleasant surprise, and she adds an extra layer to the plot.

While the film’s plot is cleverly crafted, it is not particularly challenging to guess who the killer is. However, the direction by Radio Silence elevates the movie. The suspense, danger, and action sequences are spectacular, particularly the ones set in a neighborhood grocery store and a ladder between apartment complexes. The climactic sequence may not break many rules, but it is executed with precision.

Neve Campbell’s absence from Scream VI is certainly a loss for fans of the franchise, but it’s also a reminder of the ongoing issues of pay equity and fair compensation in the entertainment industry. Hopefully, her decision to turn down the role will contribute to a larger conversation about the value of women’s contributions in film and television and the need for greater representation and equality.

In conclusion, Scream VI may not have much new to offer, but it is a thrilling and entertaining addition to the franchise. The film’s focus on the four main characters, along with the brilliant direction, make it a worthwhile watch for fans of the series.


Review-Adventures of Superman: Jon Kent #1

The re-emergence of Jon’s secret identity has given him a chance to experience a normal teenage life once again. With a loving and supportive boyfriend, a joyful home environment, and a part-time job that involves saving the world, things seem to be going well for Jon. However, trouble arises when satellites start falling from the sky.

Thanks to Taylor’s masterful script, this latest Superman narrative begins with a bang, blending emotional weight with action and multiversal chaos. At the center of the story is Jon Kent, and Taylor fearlessly delves into the depths of his trauma caused by the villainous Ultraman. Rather than resorting to cheap thrills, Taylor’s skilled writing ensures that the story is a carefully crafted exploration of dark themes. We can expect a nuanced portrayal of Jon’s journey, set against the vivid backdrop of a superhero’s cape. The question remains: will Jon emerge from his ordeal as the same hero we know?

The narrative skillfully weaves together themes of loss, hope, and childhood traumas. To sweeten the pot, the minds behind the phenomenal Injustice series promise to take us on a journey through a multiverse. This story is sure to be a thrilling ride.

Clayton Henry’s art is stunning, packed with incredible detail and nuance. Bellaire’s colors perfectly capture the gamut of emotions, from the warm glow of a family kitchen to the terror of a burning planet.

In every sense, this story is beautiful, dark, and full of the twin lures of danger and desire. I eagerly anticipate what’s to come.


Review-Predator #1

A group of strangers awaken on an unfamiliar planet, with no recollection of how they got there, no agreement on the year, and no idea who to trust. Their only certainty is that something is picking them off one by one. Ed Brisson and Netho Diaz’s new series appears, at first glance, to be a homage to the 2010 film Predators, but this first issue proves to be much more than that. It cleverly incorporates the official Predator timeline and raises the stakes for action and horror.

The characters are quickly introduced, each with unique personality traits and skills that could prove useful in their fight for survival. The opening pages mix character introductions with expository action, allowing readers to get to know the characters as they flee for their lives. But this is a Predator story, and so blood and gore quickly become the norm. Diaz illustrates imaginative set pieces and inventive deaths that are astonishingly gruesome for a mainstream Marvel book.

Despite the frenzied action and chaos, the creative team keeps the story coherent and easy to follow. The use of blues and grays by colorist Erik Arciniega is effective in highlighting when the Predators are camouflaged or materializing into view, adding to the tension of the chase scenes.

Overall, this first issue promises an exciting and action-packed ride for fans of the Predator franchise, and it’s a must-read for those who enjoyed the previous miniseries. The final page leaves no doubt that this series is going to be a wild and thrilling ride.