My Entertainment Weekend Update

Hello friends and happy weekend!

This week I finished our book club novel Abigale Hall, and during most of the book I had no idea where it was going or how it was going to end. But I have to say I didn’t think it would end the way it did. It kind of devolved into a B movie horror flick ending involving rotting corpses in a mine and bloody murder and madness, lol. It was quite the ride. We haven’t chosen our new book yet, but we’re looking for something a bit more light-hearted, lol.

In Star Wars books, I’m still working my way through a reread of Kenobi, by John Jackson Miller, and have started the upper middle grade novel Smuggler’s Run by Greg Ruckus. It’s a Han and Chewie adventure story that takes place right after A New Hope. Princess Leia asks them to retrieve a stranded Rebel operative named Ematt. I like these middle grade books when I want something short and fun between longer reads. This one joins my Kindle with the Leia story Moving Target and the Luke story The Weapon of a Jedi.

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This is where the fun begins.

On Disney+ I’ve been watching a few things. I started watching Get Back, the Peter Jackson documentary about the Beatles working out their songs and show for the Get Back album. I went through a fairly serious Beatles obsession when I was younger and thought I’d check this out. It was entertaining in its way, but watching several hours of the band rehearsing and jamming songs (and often arguing) is a bit much. I only got through the first half of the first installment, and that seemed enough for me.

It was interesting, though: they’re all brilliant, coming up with songs off the cuff (and feeling the pressure of a deadline looming); Paul can be a bit bossy but it’s clear he wants the whole thing to work and tries to get the others on board; John often looks zoned out; George tries to get his two cents worth in but nobody seems to want to listen; and Ringo sits quietly at the drums watching it all. Cigarettes are smoked endlessly by all, Yoko sits devotedly in her chair next to John reading her magazines or whatever, and George’s swami friends silently sit cross-legged in the corner. It was definitely weird, lol. But there’s no doubt that when these four “come together” (ha ha, get it?) magic happens. Who knows, I may watch the rest of it this coming week.

The lads rehearse for Get Back

Anyway, in Marvel I watched Episode 3 of Hawkeye. I’m really liking this series. Echo (Maya) is a sympathetic villain in that she’s seeking revenge for her father’s death, as Hawkeye killed him during his Ronin period. I love that she’s a strong female character with disabilities–she has a prosthetic foot and is deaf. Hawkeye’s own hearing loss is, of course, rather symbolic: whenever someone tells him what an inspiration he is or that he’s a hero, he’s “not hearing” them. He’s defining himself by what he did as Ronin, and that’s clearly something he needs to work through in this show.

I also rewatched Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, because it’s just so wonderful and I love it, lol. I’m already on board for a sequel, not only because I want to see these characters again, but because now I want to know just what, exactly, the Ten Rings are and where they came from.

Also in rewatches, I watched A New Hope just because I wanted some Star Wars and figured I’d go back to basics. I try to find new things or insights whenever I rewatch stuff and realized something here. When Obi-Wan and Luke are in the cantina to meet Chewie and Han Solo, Obi-Wan doesn’t hesitate to bring out the ol’ lightsaber and chop that guy’s arm off. In my reading of the book Kenobi, Obi-Wan is trying to unlearn reacting to things as a Jedi in order to blend in and be invisible. But now, after twenty long years, he’s resurfacing as a Jedi and does it in a flashy way. Knowing Obi-Wan from all the other SW material out there, it seems a bit over the top for him, but I’m guessing he’s relishing coming out of hiding finally and can’t help himself. Old Ben’s gone and Obi-Wan’s back, bitches! At least that’s my in-universe head canon, lol.

That’s it for this week. What’s been entertaining you? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Hello friends, and happy weekend! I hope all my fellow American friends had a great Thanksgiving this past week.

In books, I’m working on Abigale Hall, the gothic tale we’re reading in my book club. I’m about 80% done and will have it finished for our meeting on Tuesday. A couple of fellow members have already finished it, and their responses have been “OMG, I can’t believe it!” So I’m curious to see how it ends! I’ll have my thoughts on it next week.

I started a reread last week of Kenobi, by John Jackson Miller, since I’m getting excited for the Obi-Wan series (though who knows when the show will come out next year, lol). It’s a Legends book, so it’s not canon; but I feel that since the show will be set ten years after ROTS, this book, set immediately after the events of ROTS, won’t conflict with canon in any measurable way. It’s a good story and very well-written, and one of my favorite Star Wars books.

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He’s just a kid who wants to kiss a girl.

In Marvel, I finally watched Spiderman: Far From Home last week. I’ve always loved Toby Maguire as Spidey, but Tom Holland is really great in the role, too. He’s just this sweet kid that you want to hug, lol. The movie was fun and entertaining, as was the first one, but Mysterio was kind of a weird villain. The guy had no real superpowers, so how was he planning on dealing with any actual threat that came along? Idk. I was happy to see Happy playing a bigger role here, too. He just keeps growing on me. So now I’m ready to see No Way Home when it comes out next month.

I also caught the first two episodes of Hawkeye this week. I’ve heard some people say that it’s “boring,” but I don’t agree. I guess I can see why they may think that, but I like the show and have no complaints, really. Probably because I love the character of Hawkeye and Jeremy Renner, the actor, and I’m happy to watch him. (I thought The Falcon and the Winter Soldier was kind of boring, but I watched it anyway, because, you know, Avengers).

But I really didn’t think it was boring. Kate Bishop is fine as the “next” Hawkeye, but I’m more interested in Clint Barton’s character. He’s sad over Natasha Romanov’s death, of course, and is a bit over the hero status. He’s just trying to spend time with his family and to be a good dad. I think it’s a nice touch that he’s got a hearing aid in one ear, because you rarely see superheroes suffer any physical consequences of constant explosions, lol. He’s also reaping the consequences of his “Ronin” period. I love the doggie, too (where did he come from? He obviously belongs to someone because of the leash. What happened to his eye? I have questions….). And oh, man, that Avengers Broadway musical! We need that in real life, lol.

He’s just a man who wants to kiss his kids.

That’s about it this week. I’d just like to add that The Curtain Saga strikes again! My stats have been crazy, 500-1000 views these past few days, which is unheard of on my site, lol. The last time this happened was this past summer, when I happened to mention putting up curtains in my daughter’s room, and put “curtains” as one of my tags. Little did I know that curtains are apparently super-popular in the google-sphere, and I think people unintentionally found my site. Someone else had seen the post the other day and “liked” it, and the stats have been spiraling ever since, lol. The internet is weird! But I’m not complaining. 🙂

So what’s been entertaining you lately? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Hello friends, and happy weekend!

This past week I finished my reread of Master and Apprentice by Claudia Gray, a novel about Qui Gon Jinn and his Padawan Obi-Wan Kenobi. It’s a great read, and I love the exploration of Qui Gon and Obi-Wan’s relationship at this time. Qui Gon continues to be a fascinating character, a Jedi more akin to the Jedi of the High Republic, I think. A little bit more mystical, more attuned to the Living Force. He’s a great foil to young Obi-Wan, who is much more straight-laced and logical. It’s interesting to see how Obi-Wan changes over the course of the saga, and especially his relationship to the Force. I just love these two Jedi!

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to reread The Rising Storm before the next High Republic book comes out in January, The Fallen Star, by Claudia Gray yet again (I can’t wait for this one, it’s the first adult novel in the High Republic series Gray has authored); or, if I wanted to reread Kenobi by John Jackson Miller, as I’m getting excited for the Obi-Wan series (when D+, when???).

There’s also been a cover reveal for one of the new canon books coming out next year. It’s called Brotherhood, and it’s an Obi-Wan and Anakin story during the Clone Wars, and it comes out May 10th, 2022. Here’s the cover:

Star Wars: Brotherhood cover featuring Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Taking place between AOTC and ROTS, Brotherhood deals with “that business on Cato Neimoidia.”

I meant to do a separate post on all the new canon books coming out next year, but alas, never got to it. I’m planning on reading all of them, and I’ll probably do a blurb about each one here as I read them. Three new High Republic novels, four new canon novels, and a Padme Amidala novel are all coming out next year. Needless to say, I’ll be doing a lot of Star Wars reading, and I couldn’t be happier about it!

I’ve also been reading our book club novel Abigale Hall, a gothic tale of two orphan girls sent to a creepy Welsh manor just after World War II. I’m about halfway done, and it’s a strange ride, I’ll say that. I’m eager to see how it all comes together at the end, and will report on it in the next post.

In movies and Marvel, I watched Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on D+, and I adored it! I previously haven’t been too excited about any new Marvel heroes, as I’ve just discovered the Avengers recently (even though they’ve been around for years, lol) and I don’t feel like I’m ready to move away from them. But since it was on D+, I figured I’d give it a whirl–and absolutely loved it. I was enthralled by Shang Chi’s family drama, the amazing martial arts, the incredible visuals, and pretty much just everything about it. And oh, that dragon! Katy was a hoot, too. This was another example of Marvel at its best.

I love her.

Speaking of Marvel, Hawkeye is out next week, and I can’t wait! You can bet I’ll be posting my thoughts on the first two episodes that will drop next week.

On the SW fan fiction front, I’ve finished a tentative outline, wrote the prologue, and the first two sections of the first chapter. There’s still a lot of plot issues to iron out, but I’ll deal with those as I go along. As long as I know where I’m headed, I’ll be fine. I find that if I try to figure every little detail out at the beginning, I’ll a) never get started, and b) miss out on the amazing insights that come to me while I’m writing. It never fails–when I’m in the writing “zone” the Muse will send me exactly what I need. Anyway, I’m pretty excited about it, and will plod on spinning my tale.

That’s it this week. What’s been entertaining you? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Hello friends, and happy weekend!

I finished one book this week: Moving Target: A Princess Leia Novel, by Jason Fry and Cecil Castellucci. I enjoy these little middle-grade books; they’re quick reads, not particularly complex, but fun and give a bit of insight into familiar characters. This one had Leia on a mission between Empire and Return of the Jedi, while Han was still in carbonite, and the Alliance fleet was getting ready for its attack on Endor. The story is framed by an older Leia telling her droid PZ a story for her memoirs, just before the events of The Force Awakens, one that illustrates her ideas and commitment to duty. One little tidbit is that this story tells how they got the Imperial shuttle Tyderium for their strike team on Endor.

I’m still making my way through my reread of Master & Apprentice by Claudia Gray. But because it’s a reread, there’s no hurry, and I also would like to start the new book for our book club called Abigale Hall by Lauren A. Forry. It’s a gothic read about a strange estate in England with secrets and mysteries. We wanted to choose something spooky for the Halloween season, but we’re a little behind, lol. But it’s still appropriate for the season, I think. I’m going to start that this coming week.

The Book Review: Abigale Hall by Lauren A. Forry- Feature and Revie...

So I watched The Book of Boba Fett trailer this past week, and am cautiously optimistic for the show. Fett was never one of my favorite characters and I never really understood the fascination, but his appearance in The Mandalorian made him much more interesting to me. So I’m curious to see where this character is going. I think I agree with some predictions that Boba will unite the criminal underworld and use it to come to the aid against…somebody, lol. Maybe the Mandalorians, maybe Thrawn. I like either idea.

But before that, there’s the Hawkeye series this month, which I’m really looking forward to. I also think that Shang Chi and the Ten Rings will be on Disney+ this month, but I’m guessing it will be on Premier Access at first. We’ll see. And while The Eternals just came out in theaters, I’ll probably wait until it also shows up on D+. I’ll admit, I’m not in a hurry for any new Marvel heroes–I just discovered The Avengers a few months ago, lol. I’m more interested in their movies coming out next year, like Dr. Strange, Thor, Wakanda, and Ant-Man. Alas, they’ve been pushed further into the year, which is frustrating, but maybe the first half of the year will be for Star Wars, like Andor and Obi-Wan. At any rate, a very exciting year for entertainment!

I’ve also watched Assembled: The Making of What If, which was pretty cool. It’s another series that surprised me in how much I loved it. So it was fun seeing how it was all put together. I didn’t realize What If? was an actual series in the comics way back when (I’m quite ignorant when it comes to Marvel, to be honest, lol). I like how the creators took the concept of the What If comics but applied it to the MCU. I’m happy there’s going to be a Season Two, and am looking forward to seeing how they’ll continue it.

So, in writing news, I’ve finally picked up the Star Wars fan fiction I started several months ago and decided to work on it diligently and finish it. It’s turned from a tentative short story into a novel-length idea, and I’ve been taking notes, doing character sketches, brainstorming ideas, and working on an outline (and doing a ton of research on Wookieepedia). I’m pretty excited about it, and though it will take a while, I will share it here when it’s done. As a consequence, I probably won’t be tearing through as many books as I have been lately, or watching as many movies. I will definitely be watching the must-see Marvel and Star Wars series and movies that will be coming out, but not much extra stuff. I’ll keep you up to date on it all.

That’s about it this week. Let me know what’s been entertaining you and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Happy Weekend my friends!

Last week, I wrote of my struggles to get through Ronin: A Star Wars Visions novel. I’m sad to report I haven’t made much progress on that book, but I still have hope I will finish it…someday.

In the meantime, I picked up Master & Apprentice, by Claudia Gray. It’s a re-read, but it’s one of my favorite SW canon books by one of my favorite SW authors. With the recent news that Hayden Christiansen will be in the Ahsoka series (OMG, yay!), it got me thinking about the upcoming Obi-Wan series, which naturally got me thinking about Obi-Wan himself, which led me to picking up this book. It’s a book about Padawan Obi-Wan and his relationship with Qui Gon Jinn, and an important mission, of course. I wrote about my thoughts on this book on my other blog The Star Wars Reader (which I’ve been shamefully neglecting lately), and you can read it here if you’d like.

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This one’s definitely worth a reread.

On my Kindle, I’m still reading the middle-grade book Moving Target by Jason Fry and Cecil Castellucci, a story about Leia between Empire and Return of the Jedi. I’m enjoying it and will probably finish it this coming week and share more of my thoughts on it then.

In movies, continuing with the train of thought above with Obi-Wan, in reading Master & Apprentice I thought about The Phantom Menace, and so decided to watch it. Which naturally led to Attack of the Clones and then of course Revenge of the Sith. So there was an unplanned prequel marathon this week, and I keep thinking, How could I have not loved these back in the day? Lol. I was young and ignorant, prejudiced against anything new in Star Wars. I’m so glad I’ve seen the error of my ways. 🙂 I’ve learned, in my dotage, that I’m so happy with any kind of Star Wars that is offered, that they are gifts, and I am grateful, lol.

I will do what I must, and rewatch the prequels.

Anyway, in Marvel: I watched the 2015 version of Fantastic Four. I thought I’d check out this updated version, but I had a feeling I wouldn’t like it as much. And I was right. I guess this is supposed to be a more “woke” version, and Michael B. Jordan does add diversity to the group, while Sue Storm isn’t Reed’s romantic interest here, or as sexualized as Jessica Alba’s Sue was (yeah, I admit that was kind of cringy). But here’s the thing: the fun factor is absolute zero. There’s no chemistry whatsoever between the characters. And Dr. Doom’s madness stems more from a hatred of the world rather than a personal hatred of the F4, which makes him a bit…dull. The whole thing was dull, in fact, lol. I don’t see why it even had to be remade. I’m assuming it was kind of a flop, because there’s been no more movies with this crew, and I’m glad. I want a reunion with the original cast–now that would be fun!

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Not very fantastic.

That’s it this week. What’s been entertaining you lately? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Hello friends, and happy weekend!

In books this week, I finished three different novels; one was a big tome, and the other two were short YA or middle grade books. The big book was The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, by V.A. Schwabb, and it was fantastic. This book held me in thrall, and I highly recommend it if you like Faustian bargain-type stories.

I also finished The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton. My daughter and her class finished it, and I was reading along with her. I’d read it when I was a kid and wanted to discuss it with her. It’s a pretty good book, considering it was written when the author was sixteen years old! Now we just have to watch the movie, lol.

The last one I finished was The Weapon of a Jedi, a middle-grade book by Jason Fry. It takes place between A New Hope and Empire, with Luke on a mission for the Alliance. But he ends up on a planet with an old Jedi Temple, and it’s here he learns more about how to use the Force and become more proficient with his lightsaber. Apparently it’s addressing some questions fans had about how Luke learned these things between the two films. It did a pretty good job, I think, but it was never a pressing question for me.

Also starring Nien Nunb!

Soon we’ll choose our new book club book, but until then I needed something on my Kindle to read, so I chose Moving Target: A Princess Leia Adventure, by Jason Fry and Cecil Castellucci. This is also a middle-grade book, and also a “Journey to the Force Awakens” book like Weapon of a Jedi. This one takes place between Empire and Return of the Jedi, while Han is still in carbonite. I’m really enjoying the Leia-centered canon books, like this one, Leia: Princess of Alderaan, and Bloodline. I like these short little middle grade books, too, because they’re fun, quick Star Wars reads when I need one, but don’t want to get into a big adult one yet.

That’s because I’m still trying to get through Ronin: A Star Wars Visions novel. I was really looking forward to this novel, as something new and different in Star Wars. And it is, but it’s not the story that’s making it slow-going for me reading this book. The story intrigues me; it’s the style it’s written in that bothers me. Most Star Wars books are pretty easy reads, and that’s great; that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy more challenging styles (I’m thinking of James Luceno, for example). But there’s something about this one that makes it hard to read. Most of the time, I have no idea what the hell’s going on, lol. I have to read and re-read sentences over and over to figure out what’s happening. And that’s just too distracting.

I’m sure Emma Mieko Candon is a fine writer, and perhaps Visions is something so completely different that she doesn’t feel beholden to the usual Star Wars writing style. And that’s fine, too. But it’s hard work reading this book, lol. And I’m a capable reader: I’ve read and loved Jane Austen, Tolstoy, Henry James, and any other number of classic authors whose style is, to say the least, challenging. But I don’t want it in my Star Wars books, lol. I’m going to keep at it, though, because I like the story I saw in The Duel and I want to know more. I’ll let you know how it’s going next week.

Anyway, in Marvel movie news, I watched Spiderman: Homecoming and loved it. The Spiderman movies are not on Disney+ as you may know, because of licensing stuff, so I have to watch it on Youtube to catch up. I’d watched the Tobey Maguire Spiderman movies back in the day, and really liked him in the role, but I have to say that Tom Holland really captures the young naivete of Peter Parker perfectly. At first I thought I watched the wrong movie first, that No Way Home must have been the first one (even though I checked) because there’s no origin story here. He already has his Spidey powers. Unless I missed something? But it kind of makes sense, because we already know how he got the powers from the other movies. We don’t need to see it again. Anyway, I loved seeing Tony Stark taking him under his wing. Next week I’ll watch No Way Home, and then I should be ready for Far From Home (that’s not confusing, right?).

It’s clobbering time!

And because I can’t seem to get enough superhero movies lately, I watched The Fantastic Four and Fantastic Four: the Silver Surfer. I think I had seen the first one way back when, but not the second. They’re super fun with simple plots, and not much else, lol. I wish there were a few more with the original cast. There’s an updated one from 2015 with a new cast, and maybe I’ll check that out next week, too, but I’m partial to the originals. Oh, and it was a gas seeing a younger Chris Evans playing the wild ladies man Johnny Storm, the complete opposite of good-boy Steve Rogers. Flame on!

That’s it this week. What’s been entertaining you lately? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Happy weekend, my friends!

In books this week, I’m about halfway through The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, which I’m really enjoying. I’m also only about halfway through The Outsiders, the book my daughter is reading in school. It’s a short book and I would have finished it in a couple of days, but I’m trying to go at my daughter’s class’ pace, which is EXTREMELY slow, lol (it doesn’t help that her teacher has been out sick). So that’s on hold until they catch up.

So I needed another Kindle book to keep me busy until then, so I downloaded The Weapon of a Jedi, by Jason Fry. It’s a middle-grade Luke-centric story that takes place between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. I’ve just started it, so I can’t really say much about it right now, except that I’m happy to be reading a Luke story. More on this book next week.

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He’s in the yellow coat/black shirt combo I like so much.

Speaking of Luke-centric stories, I just learned that there are several new Star Wars canon books coming out next year, and one of them is called Shadow of the Sith, by Adam Christopher. This one has Luke Skywalker and Lando Calrissian post-Return of the Jedi and before The Force Awakens. Finally, a Luke story post ROTJ! It comes out June 28th of next year (my birthday! Sounds like a great birthday present to myself, lol). I’m going to have a whole post on these new books, which also includes an Obi-Wan and Anakin novel called Brotherhood, a YA novel about Obi-Wan (so much Obi-Wan next year, my heart can’t take it!) called Padawan, and a book of short stories about the Jedi and the Sith called, well, Stories of Jedi and Sith, by various authors. Very exciting for this Star Wars bibliophile, and along with the new High Republic books coming out next year, I’ll be very busy indeed!

So, in Marvel: the latest What If? episode (What if…the Watcher Broke his Oath) was the season finale, and it was…good. I enjoyed it, as it brought together this rather ragtag team of heroes from across the multiverse to fight Ultron, including Party Thor, T’Challa Starlord, Captain Carter, Gomorra, Killmonger, Black Widow and Dark Dr. Strange. It had a lot of cool battles, and the solution was unique and unexpected, but…I have questions, lol.

What If...? Every MCU Easter Egg In Episode 9 | Screen Rant
Guardians of the Multiverse, assemble!

First off, I wanted to know more about this Gamorra. We hadn’t seen her at all in the series, and suddenly she’s there (taken from a universe where she was working with Tony Stark, of all people). What’s her story? Also, I just kind of assumed that if the Watcher broke his oath (and who, exactly, did he make the oath to?) that there would be consequences. A price to pay, so to speak. But nothing happened. He broke his oath and interfered, Ultron was defeated, and…that’s it. Multiverse saved. Doesn’t seem to make cosmic sense. Anyway, my last question is: how does the Watcher fit in with the multiverse unleashed in the Loki series? Does Kang (or He Who Remains, or whatever his name is) know the Watcher? Is he the one The Watcher gave the oath to? Maybe these are questions that will be answered in a Season Two, which I really hope happens.

Oh hey, if you want to ball your eyes out, check out the movie War Horse. It’s a great film about a horse and his boy, but has the kind of scenes (like a horse getting caught in barbed wire) that make me wonder why the hell I put myself through this, lol. Seriously, it’s a wonderful Spielberg film that ranks up there with my personal horse movie favorites–Hildalgo and Seabiscuit. Heavenly Hiddles is in it but only for about 20 minutes in a 2.5 hour movie. No matter; still well worth it.

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Get the tissues out.

That’s it for this week. What’s been entertaining you? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

My Entertainment Weekend Update

Happy weekend my friends!

In books this week, I’ve finished Loki: Where Mischief Lies on my Kindle. I’ve since ordered the sequel called Loki: Where Mischief Ends, and since it’s only available in paperback, I ordered the first book in paperback, too, for a matching set, lol. Can’t wait to start the second book.

I’m about two-thirds done with The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. I love this book; it’s lovely and strange and keeps you wondering “What is the truth?” I’ll probably finish it by Monday, when we have our first book club meeting about it.

Well, unfortunately I’ve set Revan aside for now. I’m just not into it right now. It’s the first time in over a year and a half I’m not reading a Star Wars book. I’d been looking forward to Queen’s Hope, by E.K. Johnston, the third in a Padme Amidala trilogy. It was originally set to come out this November, but it’s been pushed up to April 2022. 😦 So now I’m not sure what’s next for Star Wars reading. Stay tuned.

Why Tajin From Star Wars: Visions Sounds So Familiar
The Elder was one my favorite shorts from Visions. I love this Jedi Master (whose name I can’t remember, lol). He reminds me of Qui Gon Jinn, who is one of my favorite Jedi.

So I’ve just finished watching Visions, and it was…interesting. As I’ve said before, I’m not an anime fan, so it was mostly out of curiosity that I watched. And as I suspected, it was hit or miss with me. There were a few that were quite good and that I enjoyed: The Duel, The Ninth Jedi, and The Elder were my particular favorites. Only one was painful to watch, and that was Tatooine Rhapsody. Unbearable, lol. The rest were fine, but didn’t wow me overmuch. I know there’s a novel called Ronin that will continue the story began in The Duel, and it may end up on my Star Wars reading list. We’ll see. I’m probably going to do a brief post of my thoughts on each short sometime soon.

So, Marvel: I absolutely loved the latest What If? episode, about party boy Thor. It was light and funny, and Frost Giant Loki is probably the best thing ever, lol. But it really punctuates how relationships have a huge impact on who we become. Without Loki as a mischievous brother competing with him for their father’s attention, it was Thor who became the mischievous, irresponsible one. And his relationship with Frost Giant Loki, his “brother from another mother” is swell. And Loki actually seems happy for once (thank you, Marvel!). I got a hoot out of Captain Marvel’s “Hey Whitesnake!” which you probably won’t get unless you’re familiar with 80’s hair bands. It was just a fun romp, the total opposite of the tragic Dr. Strange episode (which I also loved). This show can really do anything, and it’s gold, lol. Oh, and I have no idea what those robots at the end were. Even the Watcher was surprised.

How Did Thor Grow Up Without Loki on Marvel's What If..? Episode 7
This made my heart happy.

So my X-Men marathon isn’t quite complete, but I’ve watched all the major X-Men-centric movies, up through Dark Phoenix. I haven’t watched The Wolverine, Logan, or the Deadpool movies yet. Since they’re not on Disney+ I have to pay for them individually on Youtube, which is fine, but I’ll space those out more. Really enjoying these movies, no matter how corny some may be. I’ll watch anything with Fassbender in it, lol.

Finally, I just want to do a shout-out to our lovely Ewan McGregor for winning the Emmy for Halston. The series isn’t for everyone, but I loved it, and there’s no denying he fully deserved the award for his amazing performance.

That’s it for this week. What’s been entertaining you lately? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

The Next Wave of High Republic Books

I was thrilled to see recently some revealed covers for the next wave of High Republic books that will be coming out starting in January 2022, and thought I’d share them here. To recap, here are the first two waves of Phase One (Called the Light of the Jedi):

Phase One, Wave One:

  • Light of the Jedi (Adult), by Charles Soule
  • Into the Dark (YA), by Claudia Gray
  • A Test of Courage (Middle Grade), by Justina Ireland

Phase One, Wave Two:

  • The Rising Storm (Adult), by Cavan Scott
  • Out of the Shadows (YA), by Justina Ireland
  • Race to Crashpoint Tower (Middle Grade), by Daniel Jose Older

I’ve read all of the Adult and YA books, but only one of the Middle Grade books, A Test of Courage, and only because I accidentally ordered it on Kindle, lol. It was actually pretty good! Here’s the next upcoming wave:

Phase One, Wave Three

This is the Adult novel. Looks like Stellan Gios, Orla Jareni, Bell Zettifar, Burryaga and Indeera Stokes.
May be an image of 2 people and text that says 'STAR WARS THE HIGH REPUBLIC MIDNIGHT HORIZON NEW YORK TIMES BEST SE SELL ING AL THOR DANIEL JOSÉ OLDER'
Young Adult novel. I believe that’s Padawan Reath Silas and his master, Cohmac Vitus.
May be a cartoon of text that says 'STAR WARS THE HIGH REPUBLIC MISSION TO DISASTER NE NEW YORK TIMESBEST SE ING AU THOR JUSTINA IRELAND'
Middle Grade novel. Vernestra Rwoh and her Padawan Imri.

There’s a ton of High Republic comics out there, too, but I don’t read those. I try to keep up with the events in them, but I can’t always do that. One I’d love to read, however, is this upcoming comic with Marchion Ro in it. He’s a fascinating character, and I’d love to know more about him.

May be an anime-style image of text that says 'MARVEL 1 STARWARS THE HIGH REPUBLIC EYE OF THE STORM RATED $3.99US STIVG RYAN'
That’s Loden Greatstorm’s lightsaber, by the way. Thief!

The three Phases of the High Republic are:

  • Phase One: Light of the Jedi
  • Phase Two: Quest of the Jedi
  • Phase Three: Trial of the Jedi

Each Phase has three waves, I’m assuming, so that means a lot more High Republic books, and a lot more great stories! What I really love about the High Republic is that it focuses on the Jedi, for the most part, which is my favorite part of Star Wars. Anything Jedi, and I’m on board, lol.

What do you think of these covers? Do you like the High Republic books? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!

Weekend Update: Star Wars, Marvel and Vampires

Happy weekend Star Wars friends!

So I finally caught up with all of my reading and finished four, count ’em, four books this week!

  • Out of the Shadows, by Justina Ireland. I finally finished this YA High Republic Star Wars book, mainly featuring young Jedi Knight Vernestra Rwoh and a young hauler named Sylvestri Yarrow. I’m really enjoying the High Republic stories, and this one’s not bad, but I also felt it was kind of all over the place. There seemed to be a lot going on, and yet nothing really seemed to happen, if that makes sense. There was a lot of characterization, which I like, but the plot was a bit dull, concerning a possible Nihil weapon being built in an out of the way sector of space. But it’s about Jedi, which is what I love about the High Republic, so I’ll keep reading!
  • Freefall, by Alex Segura. This is the other YA Star Wars novel I’ve been working through, this one about a young Poe Dameron and his time with the Spice Runners of Kijimi. This one was fine, as well, a solid story about 16-year-old Poe wanting to get away from the boredom of Yavin 4 and kind of accidentally getting involved in the Spice Runner organization. The only reason he really stays is because of Zorii Bliss, but she is clearly more invested in the group than he is. It’s a decent coming of age story for Poe, when he finally decides what path he wants to pursue in his life.
  • Truth and Other Lies, by Lyra Wolf. This is the latest Loki novel I’ve read, and it concerns mythical Loki and his relationships with the other gods of Asgard. This one is borderline paranormal romance, and it seems Loki’s slept with quite a few of them, including Sif, Thor’s wife, and Odin himself. But it’s when he meets the human woman Sygin that he falls head over heels. It’s also a sign that Ragnorok is coming, with Loki at its center, as The Destroyer of Worlds. Quite entertaining, actually. It’s the first of a trilogy, and I’ll be starting the second book, The Order of Chaos, soon. Here Loki is ginger-haired and green-eyed, incredibly vain but witty and passionate.
  • I Was Anastasia, by Ariel Lawhon. This is a novel my book club is reading, and it’s split between the events leading up to the murder of the Romanov family in 1918, and the story of Anna Anderson, the woman who claimed to be Anastasia. Since Anderson was proven a fraud in 2007 through DNA results, the book was less about “is she or isn’t she?” and more about “how in the world did this woman pretend to be Anastasia for 60 years? And why?” Although I was more interested in the real Anastasia and the lead-up to the murders, this was an interesting and ultimately heartbreaking read, for both Anastasias.

With all these books finished, what’s next? Well, the next Loki book, as I mentioned, as well as the next book club book, which we’ll choose in a few days. But I was also thinking about exploring the Old Republic in the Star Wars universe. I haven’t done that yet, and since there will be no more High Republic books out until January (except the comics) I thought it was high time. So I’ve ordered the first Revan book by Drew Karpyshyn. I think I’m ready to dive into that era of Star Wars.

On the Marvel front, I watched All Hail the King, a short (15 min) film with the Mandarin aka Trevor Slattery, the “villain”/actor from Ironman 3, and his time in prison. At first it seemed kind of pointless, if diverting, but then it got to the point in linking to the new Marvel movie Shang Chi and the Ten Rings. Oh, okay. So there’s that. (I haven’t seen Shang Chi yet, and probably won’t until it comes out on Disney+. But don’t quote me on that).

Marvel's What If...? is more important to the MCU than you think
Dr. Strange prepares to face….Dr. Strange.

I much more enjoyed the new What If? episode with Dr. Strange. These shows have been fun and entertaining, with characters switching roles or what have you, but this one was really quite moving and heartbreaking. Besides Loki, Dr. Strange is my favorite Marvel character, and this is my favorite What If? by far. This one wasn’t so much about a hero turning evil (although that’s what happens), but about grief and the impact it has on an individual, and the entire universe. Really good stuff. I’m just wondering who the heck The Watcher is, to be honest. What’s his purpose? He can’t interfere, he can’t change things. He’s not a god, as he tells Dr. Strange, the first time he’s actually spoken to anyone he watches. I guess he’s just a celestial observer of some sort, lol.

Finally, in my quest to acquaint myself with more Tom Hiddleston work, I discovered a gem called Only Lovers Left Alive. TH and his Marvel co-star Tilda Swinton (The Sorceress Supreme–who happened to show up in the What If episode above) are modern-day vampires that have been alive for several centuries. Now, I haven’t been into vampires since Anne Rice in the 90s, but this film was really quite fabulous. It meanders along like a dream, with Adam and Eve (yeah, those are their names, lol) doing their vampire thing–Adam is a musician, creating music (anonymously) and tinkering with technology in an abandoned part of Detroit, while his wife Eve lives in Tangier with her multitudes of books, hanging out with her vampire friend Christopher Marlowe (yeah, that one) who apparently wrote all of Shakespeare’s works. They don’t kill people for blood (not anymore, anyway) and have to find it some other way, especially since most people these days have contaminated blood (alcohol, drugs, chemicals, etc.) Mostly they just hang around and listen to music and talk about Life and stuff. But then Eve’s wild sister Ava shows up and causes trouble. I absolutely loved it! Hipster vampires, lol. Oh, and I love how Adam calls humans “zombies.”

Adam and Eve chillin’.

That’s it for this week. What’s been entertaining you? Let me know in the comments and we’ll talk about it!