After viewing a promotional poster for the Once Upon a Time spring premiere that featured Rumpelstiltskin, I had the greatest of hopes that he would miraculously appear in the Enchanted Forest in the new episode. I looked forward to it with great anticipation…but no Dark One. Granted, it’s still early, so he could still return–here’s hoping Belle and Bae can make that detour to Rumpel’s old castle tout suite–but I had hoped for more concrete proof that he was still around.
As for everything else–why, oh, why couldn’t they have chosen a different villain; why did they have to include the Wicked Witch of the West? For that matter, why couldn’t they have stayed in the Enchanted Forest? Storybrooke overstayed its welcome–for me, anyway–and a change of scenery would be welcome so long as it didn’t turn into the dragged-out Neverland storyline last year.
Despite my complaints, I did enjoy the show’s return tonight. Finding out precisely how Storybrooke returned to Maine and how Captain Hook was able to locate Emma (and where he got the memory potion) should prove to be quite exciting.
“…et in pulverem reverteris.” Remember, man, that thou art dust, and unto dust thou shalt return–a sobering reflection, yes, but important as we enter the Lenten season. I’ll be honest; I loathed Lent when I was younger, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to see its usefulness. The saying about dust reminds us that, hey, we’re not going to be around forever, and we really should decide where we want to spend the afterlife. How does Lent accomplish that?
Lent helps us to better control our wills and desires, to say “no” to something we really, really want. By strengthening control of our wills this way, we are better equipped to conform them the way we want…the way to follow Christ. But how does sacrificing that luscious chocolate doughnut covered in sprinkles help us follow Christ? It’s just a little doughnut; what difference does it make? Well, by saying “no” to little things, we get practice saying “no” to big things–it works like exercise; we start with smaller exercises first and work our way up to the more strenuous movements. So may you have beneficial exercising this Lent.
Series 3 of Sherlock has come and gone, and once more the interminable wait between seasons commences. I’m starting to appreciate the wait, believe it or not, because I know it means that the writers are trying to give us some of the best television possible, a case of quality vs. quantity–although if quantity could be boosted a little without sacrifice quality, I wouldn’t be complaining.
Anyway, I’ve decided to do mini-reviews for the episodes in season 3 for no other reason than because I could. That’s one of the beauteous things of having a blog; you can do things just because it’s possible.
- The Empty Hearse: Mark Gatiss kicks us off in fine style by showing us how Sherlock faked his Reichenbach fall…before showing us two other scenarios as well. Which is correct? They’ll never tell. But it’s not all bad news; John’s managed to move on–he’s even got himself a fiancee now, the charming Mary Morstan–and he thinks he’s finally ready to finish the Sherlock-related chapter of his life. Of course, Sherlock himself returns as alive as ever, permanently lambasting John’s plans of learning to live without his best friend and turning his life upside-down once more. John is naturally upset that Sherlock never sent word that he was still alive after all, yet he can’t find it in him to turn down the offer of another mad adventure. Sherlock Holmes and John Watson are together again, and all is right with the world.
- The Sign of Three: Steve Thompson, Steven Moffat, and Mark Gatiss all contribute to the biggest episode of the series. Forget Prince William and Kate Middleton; the Watson/Morstan affair is the real Wedding of the Century! Yes, John and Mary are tying the knot, and Sherlock’s giving the best man speech. Considering the sensitive soul and impeccable social skills of the world’s only consulting detective, nothing can possibly go wrong, right? Just throw a murder or two into the mix, and you’ve got a wedding that’s more explosive than the Doctor and River’s. Some people have complained about this episode, but personally I liked it since it worked as a nice tribute to what makes Sherlock such a great show and why we love it so much.
- His Last Vow: Steven Moffat ushers us out of season 3 with an episode that provides twists, turns, and shocks galore. It’s Sherlock and John’s biggest case yet as they face off with master blackmailer Charles Augustus Magnussen, a man with his fingers in many pies. His influence extends over most of the known world…and strikes much closer to home than either Sherlock or John ever expected. Nothing in their lives will ever be the same again.
There’s no denying that season 3 is one for the record books. On to season 4! (Whenever that may come.)
I forgot to do this last year, so I’m making up for it this year–happy St. Valentine’s Day to my loyal readers! The fact that you take the time to read these crazy little posts of mine truly means a lot. I’m not a big fan of the mushier aspects of the holiday–makes me gag, truth be told–but I like the idea of taking a day to let the people in our lives know that we care about them, whether we’re romantically involved with them or not. Oh, and the chocolate makes it tolerable, too.
How did the feast day of at least three different martyrs all named Valentine become immortalized as a day of love? (I say three because there are records of three different martyrs named Valentine sharing the feast day of February 14). Apparently the custom started in England and France in the Middle Ages when people noticed that the birds started choosing their mates around the middle of February–the 14th since February has 28 days. So people decided that February 14 would be a good day to express their love for each other as well.
In keeping with that theme, here is a very insightful speech on the nature of love from the 1968 comedy Yours, Mine, and Ours with Henry Fonda and Lucille Ball. For those of you who don’t know, Yours, Mine, and Ours is the story of how the widower father of ten children marries a widowed mother of eight–and it’s based on a true story, believe it or not. If you haven’t seen it, I definitely recommend it.
So according to my follow counter, over 500 of you are now reading my blog. 500! Really! I must say I’m slightly stunned; I never thought my random musings would attract that large a following. Thank you for taking the time to follow my blog–I know I’m nobody important, and my ponderings and observations border on the bizarre at times, but the fact that people I don’t even know think that my opinion is important–or at least worth reading–means quite a lot.
To celebrate, I bring forth the dancing hobbits!
I don’t know about you, but I am really looking forward to catching a performance of the US touring production of The Phantom of the Opera. Yes, the sets and staging are a little different from the main productions in London and New York; yes, they changed the Red Death costume; yes, they changed the chandelier crash–and for all of those things I was initially disappointed. However, I happened to see some pictures from the US tour, and they are amazing. Seriously, they’re almost as detailed as sets for a movie. Check them out for yourself! http://www.thephantomoftheopera.com/ustour/sights-and-sounds/photos/
I will still admit that I am a little sad about not getting to see the awe-inspiring Red Death costume (oh, and apparently the Phantom no longer sports that awesome feathered hat of his during “Wandering Child”), but I’m confident the US tour will be enjoyable in its own right.
And as a P.S.: Mark Campbell is no longer the Phantom for the US tour. His reasons for leaving were somewhat nebulous (he cited “personal reasons” if I remember correctly), and the new Phantom is his understudy Cooper Grodin. The rest of the cast remains the same.
Yes, yes, technically he already returned on BBC One, but tomorrow he’s returning to America via PBS. And may I say that it has been far too long a wait for new episodes. Fortunately, I’ve heard that the BBC is pushing Sherlock co-producers Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss to have series 4 ready by early 2015–or maybe even a Christmas special for Christmas 2014!
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. PBS airs the series 3 premiere “The Empty Hearse” tomorrow night at 9:58 pm, and you can watch the prequel “Many Happy Returns” to get all hepped up for the big event.