Top 11 Modern Family Guy Episodes

Hello, Spongey here.

It may not seem like it, but I like to look on the bright side. No matter how bad your situation is, there’s always a glimmer of hope. I mean, thinking negative all the time is not only bad for you, but it gets pretty boring. Of course, being overly positive is just as bad, but it’s important to find the good in everything.

And that means looking for the good parts in bad movies, a good episode of a bad show, or just the slightest positive in one of the worst things ever. Now, I like to bitch as much as the next guy, I am an internet critic after all, but I myself can be a bit too negative sometimes.

But only sometimes. Recently, I’ve tried to balance out how I review things, and thanks to some other people online, I can find the good in anything. I’ve found good episodes of Breadwinners. Seriously.

And the punchline is Modern Family Guy. I’ve gone on about Family Guy before, and how it’s another solid show that went to shit. It wasn’t the best show ever, but it had good humor and likable enough characters. But when it got brought back for the 2nd time, it let its weaker tendencies take over.

If you read my reviews of Life of Brian, Christmas Guy, and A Fistful of Meg, you know how bad it can get. As a general rule, Modern Family Guy sucks. However, every rule has an exception.

Last year, I took the plunge and watched every Modern Family Guy episode, just to find a few gems. Naturally, I found many surprises, some good, and some bad. I found out Family Guy has its own One Coarse Meal. Yeah.

After watching all of it, I am more confident in saying modern FG sucks, but I found many solid episodes. If you recall, Mr. Enter made a list of the top 25 Modern Spongebob episodes. I decided Family Guy deserves the same treatment.

After all, in a sea of crap, I found many gems. I found at least a few good episodes from each Season and I managed to take 11 of the best of those gems. Before we start, there are a few things to clarify:

There are no filler entries on this list. I think each of these episodes are good and overall, I was glad I watched them. Some of these are flawed, but the good outweighs the bad.

For me, Modern Family Guy starts with Season 7. I like Season 4 enough, and while Season 5 and 6 count, they are free enough of the Modern FG trappings for me to let them off the hook. Season 7 is where things got bad.

I must have at least one episode from Season 7-12. No Season 13, because this list was mostly planned and written before it ended…and honestly, I can’t think of any that were worthy for this list. Yeah.

With that settled, let’s look at the episodes that prove even a broken clock is right …a few times a day.

This, is the Top 11 Modern Family Guy Episodes

11. I Dream of Jesus

Season 7

Writer: Brian Scully

Seeing as I vowed to include an episode from each Modern Season, you can guess some Seasons were hard to find favorite for. Don’t worry, this is true to my opinion, I honestly like each episode on the list.

But like with Mr. Enter with Spongebob Season 6, Season 7 was the hardest. Again, like with that one, it’s not because it has the Worst episodes. Season 12 earns that medal.

But as you guessed, the good episodes mostly weren’t THAT good. There was a few but they weren’t good enough compared to some others, but you can consider them parts of my honorable mentions.

Then comes this episode. It’s at the bottom because it came really close to being a filler entry but after thinking about it and watching a few more times, I decided it belongs here. The main reason it is here is that it does a lot of things bad Family Guy episodes do…and does them right. Let me explain.

I’m sure you all know the infamous pointless filler setup before the actual plot for this episode. Peter discovers the song Surfin’ Bird and becomes obsessed with it, to the point of annoying everyone every change he gets.

This sounds pretty bad on paper, with Peter being a jerk to everyone and making us hear a song over and over again. Yet, somehow…it works! How? Well, I think there are two reasons.

One is similar to the Spongebob episode Earworm. I talked about that one a bit ago and I said that for some odd reason, I enjoyed hearing that episode’s song played for most of the episode. It was a song that is so oddly catchy it’s fun to be tortured by it.

But this is different as someone is actually trying to annoy people, or at least is pushing it on others too much. For one, the song is pretty damn catchy. When you watch this episode, it will be stuck in your head, no matter how much you hate it.

I’m one of those people who kind of likes being tortured by catchy songs that I like, which is why I enjoy Earworm and why I enjoy this. But besides that, even the Peter being a dick thing isn’t an issue.

Mostly because they get a lot of creative gags out of it. It’s not just the same thing over and over again, they mix it up with how he brings the song into the conversation. For example, Peter is reading the newspaper and comments on he is surprised that it’s not talking about how the bird is the word. But he slowly makes his way to that punchline, and Brian is confused like we are until the punchline hits.

With how it’s timed and set up, it actually works pretty well, and most of the gags work like that. Plus, the reactions from everyone else are pretty amusing as they react like most of us are when Peter is doing his crap.

Yes, it is kind of annoying but it ends up being annoying in a funny way. I’m not sure how they did it but they took a formula from a lot of crappy episodes and made it actually work. Sure, the minor success of this episode lead to them abusing the “Peter annoys people with a new toy” thing but ah well, at least it worked here.

And it’s not even the main plot.

Eventually, Brian and Stewie smash the record and Peter goes to the Record store to find the song. Why he doesn’t try the internet is anyone’s guess. Anyway, while he’s there, he bumps into Jesus.

…Yeah. I love this. You think they would make some kind of show of it, or have them suspect some new guy is different until the Jesus reveal…but no, Peter just bumps into him by chance. That in itself is funny.

It turns out Jesus was just kind of hanging out to get away from it all, and Peter is the first person to recognize him in 4000 years. Yeah.

He invites Jesus home and they become friends. However, the world eventually finds out Jesus is among us and he becomes super famous. Which means the fame goes to his head.

Yeah, it’s that story. Before I comment on that, I’ll talk about how Jesus is used. Yes, they make a few obvious jokes but somehow, none of it is offensive. Jesus is portrayed as he should be and most of the jokes that come from him are just silly jokes. They don’t go out of their way to be offensive, they just milk the concept for jokes.

Any offensive elements are downplayed or just accidental. That’s way different than usual for this show and I applaud them for doing that. But this was before this became a norm, as this was before Not All Dogs go to Heaven and crap like that.

Those kind of episodes are made worse by this one. Here they seem pretty cool and don’t try to offend people…then they say the dumbest stuff and offend everyone. Hell, they even did a direct sequel to this one which was pretty offensive.

But we’re not talking about bad episodes, we’re focused on good episodes. As for the fame plot, it works pretty well. It is cliché but they manage to make it kind of work with the humor. Plus, it does kind of fit with a guy who hasn’t had any fame or anything like that for …quite a while.

Not to mention it teaches a good moral regarding fame and Jesus learns his lesson in a way that isn’t forced. Yeah, a good moral in Family Guy, really. Despite the cliché, this part works pretty well.

I’m glad this episode turned out well since both plot lines could have turned out really badly. And if it was made a few Seasons later, it likely would have turned out pretty badly.

This was really early Season 7, before the likes of Family Gay and Not All Dogs go To Heaven so there was still some signs of good writing.

Overall, there really isn’t much else to say about this episode. It managed to take some odd concepts and make them work far better than I expected.
The first plot managed to be pretty funny despite being repetitive, and the 2nd blog managed to be well written with a good moral despite dealing with religion.

In a Season that was lukewarm, it was nice to a have a consistently funny and decently written episode. It avoids most of the problems episode
like this have, and that’s why it’s on the list at all.

It’s at the bottom since it’s not as well written or interesting as some of the later entries but it’s still a surprisingly good episode. Though I can see why some may just find it annoying with the first half.

For my tastes, it’s a decent episode and easily one of the best episodes of Season 7. …And that’s all I got, so let’s move on.

10. Road to the North Pole

Season 9

Writers: Chris Sheridan and Danny Smith

I think it’s safe to say not everyone will agree with this list, given how controversial this show can be. And that’s totally fine.

But it’s also safe to say I might get the most backlash for including this episode.

I’m pretty much we know about the “Road to” series, but I’ll explain it if you need the exposition. It’s a series of episodes about Brian and Stewie going on adventures. …That’s about it. It started with “Road to Rhode Island” and exploded from there.

If there’s one thing that is still good in Modern Family Guy, it’s these episodes. None of them top the original, but all the Modern takes on this formula have managed to be good. Infact, I considered just tying all of them since they are about equal.

Road to Germany, Road to the Multiverse, Road to Vegas, and this are all very good and I honestly couldn’t really pick which one I like more. Germany manages to avoid tasteless jew jokes (mostly) Multiverse has creative jokes (aside from some infamous moments) and Vegas had a few creative and fun set up and…an interesting ending.

But in the end I went with this. Not really cuz it’s the best but because it does a lot right despite a few issues. The premise is pretty simple: Stewie wants to see if Santa exists, so he and Brian head up to the North Pole, and thinks take an interesting turn from there.

This has the distinction of being the only Road to episode to be an hour long. Well, 42 minutes but you get what I mean. It’s not the first hour long FG special but it is the only Road to Hour long so there is that.

Do they handle the extra time well? Eh…sort of. To be honest, there’s no reason this needed to be double length but they do a decent job spacing things out. The first part is the journey to the North Pole, while part covers all the crazy stuff that happens when they get there.

It’s a bit padded (in true FG Fashion) but each part has enough going on, and while it didn’t need to this long, they do a good job with the time they have. But honestly, Part 2 is where it gets good.

Part 1 is solid with plenty of decent jokes involving the road trip, but it is a bit slow. It also a few bad jokes, most notably a weird part with Brian and Quagmire. Yeah, I like the idea of their rivalry but its lead to some bad jokes, even if it did have that amazing speech in its introduction episode.

Before I get too deep into this I should mention that this episode features musical numbers. Yeah, another thing that stays intact in the Modern Era is the soundtrack. The songs are still as excellent as ever, and honestly some of them are among my favorite Family Guy songs.

And yes, the songs in this episode are great. They are very high quality, even by Family Guy Standards. That’s fitting since this is a special. I’ll talk about the 2nd song later, but the opening song where everyone sings about what they want for Christimas is pretty good. There are some bad jokes but it’s very enjoyable nonetheless.

I prefer the 2nd song but like I said, we’ll get to it. Actually, let’s do it. So what happens in part 2 that made this episode worth of the list?
Well, when they get to the North Pole, we find out Stewie wants to kill Santa. That’s not too shocking but what is shocking is the fact that Santa…would welcome Death. Yeah, as it turns out, the North Pole is currently a wasteland.

The reindeer have gone robin, the elves started inbreeding and are mutants, and the workshop is just a horrible place. And onto of all that, Santa is completely exhausted and sick of everything. As you may have figured out, this is all because he has such a huge workload every year because everyone asks for so many presents.

…Yeah, you can see where some people’s problems come in.

For one, this episode features a lot of disturbing imagery at the North Pole, and people seem to have an issue with it. But to honest…I think this is one of the few times the show has gotten disturbing imagery right. Really.

Some of imagery includes mutant elves, evil reindeer and a good amount of gore. Now, usually Family Guy uses this for humor. Shock value. As such, I always cringe when they use disturbing imagery in any way cuz they usually expect us to find It funny in some way.

But here, it’s different. Instead of using it for cheap laughs, they actually use to it help the story. The disturbing visuals at the North Pole do a good job at showing how far Santa has fallen and thus it enhances the story.

That is something that is hard to do for a lot of writers, but this episode manages to use disgust for its intended purpose instead of just cheap laughs. Do they go too far with it? …Eh kind of.

There are a few jokes, such as an extended bit with an elf as they try to take off, and most of them are not that funny. There are points where they go too far with it but for the most part, they do get it right.

But that’s not the part you want me to talk about. Nah, it’s the disturbing scene that happens later. So let’s move on with the plot summary. Santa sings a song called “Christmastime is killing us” to explain how things are gotten, and like I said, I like it the most of the two songs.

It uses dark humor well and it’s very memorable, and even kind of catchy in a sick way. I really dig it. After that, Santa eventually gets so broken that he is unable to do the delivery for this year.

So in true Christmas Special fashion, Brian and Stewie decide to do it themselves. But this is Family Guy so it doesn’t go well. They don’t even finish off their first house because some of the residents kind of end up dead by the end of their visit.

I won’t go into too much detail but it is a joke that does go…a bit too far. I certainly see what they were trying to do, as it shows just how hard it is for them to do what Santa does. However, it goes a bit too far for the gore in some areas.

I think just having them accidentally knock someone out or something like that would be fine. But even with how it goes, it’s not the worst thing the show has done, and it at least has SOME reason to be there.

And that brings us to the other big thing about the episode: The moral. Yeah as you can clearly tell, this episode has a bit of a moral. Like I said, this show isn’t exactly the best at it so I’m always cautious when I see an episode attempt one.

But …this episode managed to pull it off!

However, I can kind of see why some may not like it. Mostly because it’s…not exactly subtle about it. The opening has everyone singing about their insane demands, and Brian (naturally) says it’s a bit too much. The rest of the episode basically shoves the moral in your face.

But honestly, I can let that slide because…it’s a good moral in a Family Guy episode! That’s rare to see, and what makes it better is how true it is. I don’t need to tell you that today’s society can be rather needy a lot of people ask for a bit too much and this episode shows you how dangerous that is.

And I do think the imaginary helps with this. Instead of simply preachy to us, it SHOWS us the dangers of not obeying this moral. Thus, it actually tries to show us what it’s talking about it and thus the moral doesn’t fall flat.

Now, I have heard the argument that this episode doesn’t really bring up the fact that Christmas isn’t about presents and in that way it kind of falls flat. But to be fair, the moral it’s attempting to convey (Being a greedy dick=bad) is done well so stuff like that can be forgiven. And hey, you gotta give them credit for trying.

I mostly just like that they used the proper tools to make a moral work instead of doing the stuff they normally would, and it does tie into the Christmas spirit, especially with the ending. In the end, no one gets a present and Brian pretty much tells everyone that they were overworking Santa and that from now one, they should just ask for one present.

Everyone goes along with it and the episode ends one year later, as Santa is fit, the North pole is alive again, and everyone is happy. It’s actually a really nice and warm ending that kind of makes you feel good inside.

That’s…different for a show like this.

Though I must say this is a bit weird. People simply decide not to ask for 100 presents next year, and boom Santa is fine. The elves are normal, everything is cherry and all that? I don’t know, it feels like it would take a lot longer to clean up the huge mess that was there…but I’m poking at the logic of Family Guy so I’ll move on.

I suppose you could say I appreciate this one more than I like it, but I do genuinely like it for the songs and some of the jokes. It has a high production value to it and the concept does lead to some nice humor. It’s not just the whole moral thing that makes it work.

But I do think they should be commended for actually doing what you’re supposed to do when putting in disturbing imagery or a moral into your story. It’s not exactly perfectly executed but it’s done fairly well all things considered.

Now, is this my favorite Modern Road to episode? …Nah, I’d tie them all since they all have good points that could make them the best, but also a few flaws. I was going to tie them but I picked this one because of much credit I give it. If that doesn’t make you happy, then pretend Multiverse is in this slot instead.

Overall, this is a solid Road to adventure with some decent jokes, great songs, and a surprisingly well done moral. It’s not exactly optimal Christmas viewing…but I do sometimes pop it in around that time, along with the first FG Christmas Special.

It’s flawed but I still rather like it. And hey…it’s still better than Christmas Guy

9. And then There were Fewer

Season 9

Writer: Cherry Chevapravatdumrong

Despite how mixed the show can be for some people, there are some episodes in the modern era that are so good that a lot of people point to them are hidden gems in the rough. Modern Spongebob has Plankton’s Pet and Enchanted Tiki Dreams, and Modern Family Guy has a couple, and out of them the one you were the least shocked to see on this list is…this one.

It was a pretty big deal when it came out for a few reasons. For one, it was the first episode shown in HD/Widescreen (as it was the Season 9 premiere) and it was the first real hour long special.

That, and it’s a murder mystery where several characters are killed off for real.

The plot is that the Griffin family, and almost every other important character is invited to a dinner party hosted by none other than James Woods, who is looking to make amends for what he has done to them in the past.

But things go sour when people start being killed off, and now they suspect that someone among them is a killer, and they must figure it out before it’s too late.

Before I start, I must warn that since this is a mystery story, I will spoil the twist to talk about why the episode is good. So if you haven’t’ seen if, you may want to skip to the next section.

…Okay, now that those losers are gone, let’s discuss this one.

I’ll be honest. While I did like the episode, I didn’t love it as much as some other people did. However, after watching again for this list, I like it a lot more.

First off, the episode uses its longer time a lot better than Road to the North Pole. As a Mystery story, it uses the extra time to expand on the story and do a lot more with it. Even the jokes don’t pad things out too much compared to most episodes. It feels one long story instead of just two episodes smashed together.

And like North Pole, it takes advantage of the bigger budget it now has. While there are no songs, there is some well-done creepy music and they use the animation to do a lot of neat things with the mansion. They really capture the tone of a mystery story really well.

They also do it with the writing. Seeing as this is Family Guy, I expected them to parody these types of stories with tons of crazy twists that make no sense, or mock really complicated mystery stories.

But instead it’s mostly played straight, just with the usual FG humor. This could have failed but it works because the story is well thought out. Having James Woods be at the center of this gives it an edge since he has a well-known villain of the show.

You gotta love a show where James Woods is a regular villain. They use the show’s continuity to its advantage, even if they have to reference “Brian Griffin’s House a Payne”, which was ….bad.

As a result, it’s still family guy even if it has a serious mystery story. As a mystery it works as it keeps you on your toes and there are some good twists and turns. I think my problem with the episode the first time I saw it, was the humor was too hit or miss.

But after watching it again, it doesn’t bug me as well. There are plenty of funny moments and while it’s flat out hilarious, it has a nice amount jokes. There are some golden bits like GO GO GADGET SKIS and the final punchline which is so amazing that I won’t spoil it later. And since the story isn’t too touchy, the jokes fit in pretty well.

I think most of the jokes I dislike just came from Stephanie. She’s Quagmire’s girl of the week and…he doesn’t like her cuz she’s fat and she wasn’t even supposed to be here. She has a weird voice and they make a lot of unfunny jokes with her, Hell, when she dies Stewie says it would be sadder if she wasn’t heavy.

And after that they still make bad jokes, like Quagmire being glad she’s dead. Seriously? But aside from most of the humor is pretty good.

While I’m talking about the flaws, there’s another one that’s nitpicky. See, James Woods has a girlfriend named Priscila, and she helped him turn a new leaf after he fell in love with her. She’s not bad, and she plays into the twist I will get into. The problem?

She’s voiced by Ashley Tisdale. …And she gets NOTHING to do. She only gets a few lines and they are all just…normal. And she dies after only having a few minutes of screen time.

What’s the point of getting a fairly talent actress who can get pretty over the top and funny…and giving her a dull character to work with? I think they just put her in at the last moment as an exchange for Seth’s cameo in Nerds of a Feather. Ashley actually appears later that season in “Brian Writes a Bestseller” and despite getting less screen time…she gets funnier stuff to do. I don’t get it.

But like I said, that’s just a nitpick and more of a personal beef than everything. The rest of the episode is very good.

It’s now time to really get into the story, so once again, turn back now if you really don’t know the ending by now. Okay, before I give my thoughts on the twist itself, let’s get into it.

Basically, James Woods is killed and they figure out that someone must be out to get him. Long story short, evidence points to Tom Tucker, and he is arrested. However, as they pack up to leave, Lois bumps into Diane and long story short, it turns out that she was the killer.

See, Diane once dated James Woods until he dumped her on her fortieth birthday, during which Tom arranged for Diane to be replaced by an attractive younger news anchor.

Seeking revenge, Diane bribed Priscilla, a news intern at the time, to talk Woods into becoming a born-again Christian and throw the dinner party so she could get revenge on both men by killing James Woods and framing Tom for it.

And she pretty much succeeded in doing that.

I’m not sure how others feel, but I thought this was a great twist. For one, they did a good job at keeping us guessing, like all good mystery stories. One of the hardest things to do if drop hints while not making it too obvious. I felt they struck that balance here, as it’s easy to guess that it was Diane, but it’s not too obvious.

There could have been more subtle clues here and there but it’s still well handled. And her backstory is very well done, as you feel a bit bad for her and see why she did did. It’s a compelling story, and all the logic checks out, at least for me.

It’s nothing too new but it fits this show very well due to the characters that are involved. And like I said, I won’t spoil the final punchline because it is just that awesome.

The main reason episode works is oddly enough, the Family Guy Elements. It could have just been a dull mystery, but the elements of hted show like the characters and humor make it unique. Obliviously it’s not the best mystery ever, so don’t expect it to wow you on that level.

But it will wow you if you expected the Family Guy writers to half ass it. Instead, it’s a loving tribute to the genre with a very good story that does everything right. It uses the tropes if the genre to its advantage and it mixes them in with the Family Guy style pretty well.

I think this episode deserves the praise it gets. I personally like other episodes more, but it’s still surprisingly solid. It’s a fun homage with a good amount of clever jokes, good animation, and a good story with a cool twist and an awesome ending.

It’s just another really solid episode. …That’s all I got. Yeah, with some of these, I don’t have a lot to really say. In this case it doesn’t exactly do a big thing better than some bad FG episodes. It’s simply a good episode. That’s it.

Either way, it’s pretty good and it was quite a bit of fun. I could make some lame mystery pun, but I think I’ll move on. Actually, I should mention that that this episode does kill off some characters for good. …Minor ones like Diane and Muriel but hey, it’s cool that they did this, and the former did have an impact.

They did kill James Woods…but he return in a later episode because…..reasons. Ugh, at least this episode is still good.

NOW, let’s move on.

8. Quagmire’s Quagmire

Season 12

Writer: Cherry Chevapravatdumrong

I believe I said earlier that I think Season 12 is the worst Season…and yeah it is. But despite all the crap in it, there are a few good episodes, and this is one of them. Much like pretty much everything on this list, it does a lot right that most episodes get wrong.

Quagmire finds a girl named Sonja that is just as kinky as he is, but he soon finds out she might be just a bit too extreme, even for him…

This one is going to be a bit awkward to explain but I’ll just get it out of the way now. Quagmire finds himself in an abusive relationship. Yes, really. Time to get a bit serious. You may recall that this show has attempted to tackle that subject before in “Screams of silence”.

And truth be told…this is that one done right. Allow me to repeat that. Family Guy tackled abuse relationships…right. How is that so? Well, the thing is, the problem with that episode is that it didn’t really feel like an honest attempt at tackling the issue.

It just felt like a Very Special Episode, done to get attention. It had too many logic problems and jokes to really work. I give it a bit of respect for at least …trying in a way but it didn’t work out very well. Especially since the show tends to put the subject in a Comedic light, making the episode fall flat.

This one, however fixes that problem. Instead of feeling like a Special Episode that is made to tackle a big issue, it’s just a simple story. It doesn’t even feel like they were trying to say something. They just wanted to see what happens if Quagmire ended up on the other side of situations he tends to be girls in. That’s all.

As a result, it feels a lot more genuine. Because the situation is less serious, they are allowed to make jokes with it. But they actually scale back on when it gets more serious. It’s the right balance and this story actually fits the show, unlike that other episode.

Quagmire is also better here as it feels like he’s getting a bit of a taste of his own medicine, and you do kind of feel for him in a way. Modern Quagmire is weird because sometimes he’s actually pretty good considering what kind of character he is, and other times he’s…what you’d expect. This episode balances that out fairly well all things considered.

Another important to point out is that it shows that men can be sexually harassed by women but it doesn’t get on a high horse about it and just lets it play out without feeling the need point out how subversive they are.

That’s right, this episode is also Peter-Assment done right. I’m amazed.

And you know what? This episode isn’t too bad in the humor department either! Quite a few of the jokes did make me laugh, even some of the cutaways. It’s not the funniest episode ever but the jokes managed to well-placed and they mostly don’t undercut the story. There are of course some off moments but it’s mostly decent.

Heck, even the subplot is pretty amusing. Stewie finds one of his old Teddy Bears in the Antic and start to worry about how this will affect his…relationship with Rupert. Yes, it’s a parody of cheating stories and it’s really amusing. They do a good job playing up how absurd this and it’s got its own funny moments.

The only big problem with the episode is a line at the end. When all is said and done, Quagmire says this:

“The thing I learned from all this, is that when it comes to relationships, I need to be the kinky one”

…So it’s okay when you are like that but it’s not okay when someone else does it? That’s more than a little hypocritical, and it’s not even treated as a joke.

…But to be honest, it’s not a huge problem as it is a throwaway line, unlike a similar thing they did in Roasted Guy. So while it does kind of undermine the point of the plot, I can forgive it little bit.

It was still interesting to see Quagmire go through. Admittedly, the plot isn’t super deep or anything like that, but it’s just a decent story that played out nicely. It mostly works due to how it subtly does things right that some other episodes got wrong. And I really give the crew credit for doing that, despite the episodes flaws.

As a side note, Sonja was fairly enjoyable was how crazy she got, though it is weird when you find that she is voiced by Seth Macfarlane’s Sister…And now you know why she reminds you of Hayley from American Dad.

So overall, this episode may not be perfect but it’s pretty good. It manages to feature an abusive relationship without being preachy about it, it has an interesting story and it even has a fun subplot with a decent amount of funny jokes.

Considering how bad this one could have been, it’s great they actually did it fairly well. In a Season that contains a Dog giving a baby herpes, it’s pretty welcome.

Not a whole lot more about this one. It’s just a solid episode that handles a tricky subject fairly well. It’s flawed but is otherwise one of the best episodes of that Season.

Needless to say, Quagmire’s Quagmire isn’t…uh…a Quagmire? I’m bad at puns…

7. Mr. and Mrs Stewie

Season 10

Writer: Gary Jenetti

There’s no doubt that most of the characters have changed over the years, mostly for the worst. But of all the character changes, the most infamous has to be Stewie.

In the earlier season, He was an evil Baby bent on killing Lois and maybe taking over the world too. But as the series went on he got…weirder. He was no longer as evil as he once was. Instead, he’s um…sexually confused.

Yeah, that’s putting it mildly.

He barely even tries to kill Lois anymore. Though to be fair, I guess they felt that reached in apex in that Stewie Kills Lois. They mostly use him for Gay jokes now.

But to be honest…it actually doesn’t bug me. Yes, it’s a big change but unlike the other character, he can still be funny. I find the concept of a slightly evil sexually confused Baby to be really funny. I guess I have a weird sense of humor.

But I do think his evil side should show up more often. Hell, one episode actually acknowledged this. But that one had a weak a plot so I went for another episode where evil Stewie come back. Which brings us to this episode.

Stewie finds an evil little (voiced by Cate Blanchett ) who he really hits it off with. However, she’s even more evil than he is and as time goes on, she becomes a bad influence on him. Can he realize this before it’s too late?

Yes, he can but will he? ….Duh.

There really isn’t a lot to say about this. It’s only ambitious is to give us a fun story, and it does. It’s one of the more entertaining episodes on the list, with the story and jokes. I quite liked how they handled Stewie here.

He’s evil from the start for once, and they do a good job contrasting his evil with hers. They also poke fun at how he’s not as evil as he uses to be.

“What do you think when I said Victory shall be mine?”

“You haven’t said that in a very long time”

Penpole herself is one thing that makes this episode good. She is mostly just an eviler Stewie (with a more Britihs-y voice) but they had a lot of fun playing up how evil she is. While Stewie does terrible things, he does it for the greater goal of world domination. She on the other hand, does it for fun. Every day she and Stewie do something bad, like play a prank on Mort or just torch a country for fun.

The voice helps too, as she sounds like she’s having a lot of fun with this role. Through her, they even do Mean Spirited humor correctly. Because she’s supposed to be the villain a lot of the humor works, even some of the meaner jokes.

Thus, the episode is really enjoyable with how the two interact. The story is fairly predictable, since you know that Brian will get worried, Stewie will tell her that, She’ll tell him to kill Brian, he’ll be too pussy to do it and yada yada. …But it’s more about fun than story and the story still works as a way to fit in some fun jokes and action scenes.

Speaking of jokes, there are plenty of good ones, and not just the Stewie ones. There are some fun “Brian is a snobby author” jokes and some other little things. Like I said, this one is the more enjoyable episodes on the list with it’s story and jokes.

As for the subplot…meh. Peter and lois have to get Separate beds because Peter keeps crushing her in his sleep and it goes in some weird direction with Quagmire. It’s not bad, but it’s not very funny. Not weak enough to drag down the episode though.

Overall, this episode is good. It brings Evil Stewie back again and it has a fun story with a nice one shot character and good jokes. I actually hope they bring her back at some point. Also, this is the 2nd episode on the list to feature a callback to Brian Griffin’s House of Payne. I don’t get it.

Yeah, told you there wasn’t much to say. It’s fun, get off my back.

6. Hannah Banana

Season 8

Writer: Cherry Chevapravatdumrong

Well, here’s a particularly interesting one. It’s another example of a dramatic story done well, but some people were a bit split on it. Now, I’m pretty sure the first part of that title was supposed to be the main plot but the 2nd feels more like a A plot, so we’ll discuss it first.

Chris finally proves to his family that there’s an evil Monkey in his closet…but it turns out he’s not so evil after all. Drama ensues.

Yep, they finally did something with the famous Evil Monkey besides just…do jokes with him. Here, they take the “mystery” out of him and develop him as character. A lot of people have a problem with that…but I don’t.

For one thing, the monkey was a gag characters. That’s it. He wasn’t a story telling device or anything like that. He was a joke and he always has been. So all developing him does is just…develop a gag character. You can argue it ruin the joke but that’s not the argument I’ve heard.

For what it’s worth, the writers said they did this because they thought the joke was getting old, and this was their way of retiring the character. That’s admirable in itself.

But whatever, let’s see what exactly they do with him. As it turns out, this whole evil thing was just a misunderstanding. He was forced to move into Chris’s closet after his wife had an affair, and divorced him, and pointing at Chris was only his way of trying to make conversation. Also the angry face he gave was his way of thinking, and the trembling was due to a copper deficiency.

…Okay that is kind of contrived, but it’s a Comedy so I can let it slide. Besides, the story they do with him is strong to make up for it. But before we go any further, we have to get the subplot out of the way cuz it’s…interesting.

It’s about Miley Cyrus.

…Yeah.

Now, this episode came out in 2009 which means this was back when she was relevant …and sane. As you can imagine, it makes watching this episode really awkward. Basically, Stewie is a big Hanna Montana fan and Brian (reluctantly) helps him get tickets a concert in Quahog.

Long story short, Miley and Stewie actually become friends and things get weird from that. Now, Miley was already a laughing stock before this episode aired, so it really adds nothing new. But for what it is, it’s got its moments.

For one, their depiction of Hanna Montana is spot on. And the song she is does indeed sound like something she would sing, and I hate that it’s catchy. Their deception of her is…interesting. She’s mostly shown to perfectly normal but then it turns out she’s a android made by Disney to be the “perfect pop star” that can “never fail”.

Yeah.

It’s a predicable punchline but I guess it’s not too bad. There’s a cool action scene and it ends up playing into the main plot. Overall, it’s fine. So why is it weird? Well…at one point, Brian asks Stewie to…reprogram her to um…do stuff with him.

…Yeah.

That’s my only real problem with this episode. It’s just….seriously? But it’s just one scene and after she goes crazy they don’t bring it up again. Thank god.

So yeah, weird subplot but the main plot is good enough to make up for it. Anyway, Chris doesn’t buy the Monkey’s excuse and tries to prove that he’s still evil.

However, when the Monkey helps him with a book report, he accepts him as a friend. Most of this plot is cliché but heart pulls it through, especially in this next part. Chris starts hanging with The Monkey more than Peter, because Peter doesn’t give him enough attention.

Oh hey, a “Chris wants Peter time’ plot that isn’t terrible and full of incest. It can be done!

Joking aside, this is where the episode gets good. It may be cliché but it has a lot of heart to it. It really explores their relationship and they sprinkle in enough jokes to make it enjoyable.

There’s one joke that should be terrible, but it manages to work because of a funny punchline. I won’t say what it is, but it’s actually not bad.

It’s a sweet story that I liked watching. The monkey plays a good role as he tries to get them to talk things out and the ending is very nice. The final punchline is kind of amusing, though it does remind me that we’ve never seen Tom Tucker’s son in a while. Seriously, what happened to him?

I can’t really explain in detail why the story works, it just ties. It touches on some stuff I’ve been curious about, it has sweet moments, and it fits in some decent Comedy. That’s really about it. I mostly like how they mix it in with the Monkey stuff. The Peter/Chris story is good but without the Monkey, it might have been boring or just full of bad jokes that ruin it.

But mixed in with the Monkey, it flows better and it gives me more to like. I just don’t get why I have so little to say. The previous episode has more to talk about!

This episode is …good because it develops a gag character, has funny jokes, and it gives us a sweet and decent story. And it mocks a Disney Sitcom. There, do you want anything more?

See, in a video review a short explanation is fine and I’ve seen it be done fine. But somehow in text you just expect more which is why this list and one I’m working on, is hard to do. But as long as you get why I like or dislike something, I think its fine.

So yeah, we’re done here. It’s a good episode.

5. Forget Me Not

Season 10

Writer: David A Goodman

Hey, remember the Spongebob episode Gone? The one with a good concept that is mostly enjoyable but ruined with a crappy ending? This episode is like that, except it’s done right.

That’s right, Modern Family Guy did something better than Modern Spongebob. Wow.

Peter, Joe, Brian, and Quagmrie gets into a car crash and when they wake up, they are the only people in the world and they have lost their memories. Can they figure out what the heck happened?

I noticed that a lot of the better Modern Family guy episodes have good and interesting stories. Which is weird because a lot of the worst ones try too hard to be serious. I think it works when it’s not too serious and it’s a story that you can fit jokes into. Quagmire’s Quagmire is an extreme example, and here we have a mild example.

For one, the obligatory “lead in to the plot” set piece actually needs to be here, as it has a minor plot point that comes into play later, and it’s not forced. Plus it only takes 5 minutes to get to the plot and most of it is actually good set up. It’s small but it’s important.

At the start, Stewie tells Brian that he and Peter’s friendship is purely due to him being Peter’s dog, and they aren’t real friends. Keep this in mind. Once they wake up with no memories, most of the episode has them trying to figure out what happened.

I like these type of plots and it is interesting to see they handle this situation. And because it’s too big of a story, they fit in plenty of jokes.

They are hit or miss though, with a few going a bit too far. But there are still some amusing jokes, including a great joke where Peter (with no memory) sees a jukebox playing Surfing Bird, and turns it off, calling it annoying.

Yes.

There really isn’t much to say about the bulk of the plot, since it mostly has them running around trying to figure things out, witch a bunch of jokes. It works since I am interested to see what will happen and enough jokes hit their mark.

But that means I am forced to just skip ahead to the important parts. The guys start to suspect that Peter is somehow behind all this. Why? Well, in an earlier scene, they were playing Laser Tag and cuz Peter won, he got a prize. It was a gag newspaper that said “Peter Griffin eliminates enemies, destroys world”.

He hung it up in the living room and when the guys see this now, they think it’s legit. …Yeah, I said it was important, I never said it wasn’t forced.

Brian has his doubts about this because he starts to bond with him. As you can imagine, they aren’t happy when Brian tries to warn Peter about their upcoming attack and stuff ensues. Long story short, there’s a chase scene and…Brian is shot down.

Now I can talk Yeah, they managed to do an emotional scene pretty well. Because of how the story is done, I do care when this happens. Also, a short bit made me care about the Death of Brian than the entire episode dedicated to it. Figure that one out.

But of course, this is all a simulation. Yep, Stewie wanted to do a test to see if Brian and Peter’s friendship is real, so he used his tech to make up this to see if they would still be friends even without living together.

As it turns out, they are. Now, this is a cop out ending done right. Because instead of being a cop out, it does serve a purpose. The whole episode dives into the friendship between Peter and Brian and the ending still does that because of the whole simulation by Stewie thing.

I know they pulled this twist way back in Lois Kills Stewie, and I thought this actually worked better here for reasons I just stated. It’s the proper way to do this kind of ending. It keeps the status qou, but it still makes it so the story has a point.

It was really neat to dive into the Peter/Brian relationship and we got an interesting and even sort of sweet story out of it. Sure, I wish they’d do this more since…Stewie did kind of have a point, but ah well.

This episode works pretty well with its interesting story and nice moments. It’s a good example of how this show can still make a solid story that I can get into it. It gives us some nice character stuff, as well as a few decent jokes.

It’s just another really solid and enjoyable episode. ..Darn I did it again. I explained why I like it, get off my back!

I suppose I should end this part by thanking this writer for giving us this episode. What else has this guy done anyway?

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Let’s move on.

4. Meg Stinks

Season 12

Writer: Danny Smith

…Okay, I know the title makes it sound bad, but trust me, it’s actually really good! And in the same Season with A Fistful of Meg, that’s shocking.

Remember the subplot from Road to Rupert where Meg and Peter kind of became friends? Well, this is kind of like that except….maybe better?

While on a trip with Meg, the two finally start to bond and slowly become friends.

The main reasoning for this being high on the list is pretty obvious. We all know how overdone Meg Abuse is, and how it’s just never funny. So when something good happens to her, it’s always nice. And this deep into the series, it’s great to have another episode dedicated to it.

When they start bonding, Peter starts to feel bad for Meg and see where she’s coming from. It’s really nice to see and the rest of the episode follows suit. It’s mostly just them bonding but it works because…it’s just cool to see!

If you recall, in Road to Rupert they didn’t’ really start to bond til near the end, so here we get a whole episode with them bonding and it’s really cool. They eventually turn this into a story where Meg can’t keep up with Peter’s craziness and starts to get tired.

And this may sound bad since it means the one time Peter acts nice to Meg, she starts to dislike. However, it really works because Peter is not being a jerkass at all. He’s just doing stuff Meg isn’t into. Only one cutaway gag has him doing something bad, and it’s the part of the episode I don’t like. But it’s a Cutaway so I can let it slide.

There’s also the fact that Meg missed a college interview to hang out with her Peter, and all this stuff with him causes her to shirk her responsibilities. She realizes that Peter doesn’t have to be a friend, he just has to be a Father. She has to focus on her future for the time being.

And that’s actually really interesting!

They could have ended it on a mean note just to put the Status Qou back in place, but they did it in a mature way. By Family Guy standards, anyway.

The final scene where Meg has to break this to Peter is pretty well done too. Peter doesn’t act like a jackass, and in a weird way you kind of feel bad for him. I really like how they handled this, to be honest.

But that’s not all this episode has to offer. Like most of the episodes on here, it’s actually funny. There are only a couple of weak jokes and most of them hit their mark. The highlight is the subplot where Brian has to stay in the yard due to being Skunk’d and he pretty much turns into Wild Brian. It’s just as funny as it sounds, the final punchline is great.

Isn’t a nice when a sweet episode succeeds just as well in the humor department?

In a Season that didn’t have as many gems, it was shocking to see one of the best Modern Episodes in this bunch. It manages to treat Meg well and it does a Status qou ending correctly. Like I said, they made an interesting and kind of mature story out of it.

Even without being in a bad Season, this would still be rather impressive. It’s a sweet little episode with a good story, a well handled story, and a good subplot with quite a few funny moments.

It’s a surprising Gem that is worth checking out despite how lukewarm the rest of the Season is. Really, my only problem is the title. It’s misleading and it has nothing to do with the episode.

Overall, it’s a very good episode that ended up being way better than it deserve to be. …That’s all I got, once again.

3. The Big Bang Theory

Season 9

Writer: David A Goodman

Perhaps one of the bigger issues with Family Guy, a whole, is how hit or miss it is. That’s the point of this type of comedy but the show, especially now can be inconsistent. With all the jokes they throw at you, even the better episodes can have bad jokes that ruin the experience.

As such, it’s hard for an episode to be consistently enjoyable for some. A few re-watches fixes that problem, especially with most of the episodes on this list. But everyone in a while, they make an episode that’s confidently enjoyable with very few jokes that miss.

This is one of them.

Instead of doing the plot summary I’ve been doing, I’m going to go step by step, because this episode goes in a few directions and just summing up one part wouldn’t really do the plot justice.

It all starts with Stewie using his time machine to one up Brian easily. He finds out and when after they fight, the machine screws up and takes them to an empty void outside the space time continuum.

At first, you think this will be the whole episode. It will mostly be the two messing around in this void where you can do anything. Kind of like that one episode of Wander Over Yonder. But actually, it only takes up a small portion.

They eventually make it back home by blowing up their time machine and later on, they find out that they went back in time to before time existed. That explosion…was the Big Bang. Hence the title.

….Damn. We’ve seen our main characters cause various historic events, but this episode goes the extra mile and makes them create the universe! I think I’ve only seen this one other tie, and that was Captain Underpants.

It’s funny cuz you think I’m joking about that.

Anyway, remember Stewie’s nemesis Bertram? Yeah, he comes back and finds out about the time machine, so he decides to use it to go back and get rid of one of Stewie’s ancestors so he won’t be born.

He does so but as it turns out, this causes the world to start going away because of the whole creating the universe thing.

“The universe created me, so I could create it!”

So of course, Brian and Stewie must go and stop him. As you can tell from all that, this episode has quite a bit going on…and that’s why it’s so good. It’s another one those interesting plots that’s really interesting to watch.

But here it goes in a lot of interesting directions, and you never really know what’s gonna happen next. Sure, you could think it’s odd it takes so long to get the ultimate plot of stopping Bertram but they did a good job of tiding us over until then.

Other episodes that have to take a while set up the actual plot make it so sitting through the first half was pointless. (Looking at you, Long John Peter). But here, they weave every plot point into the next, so the episode isn’t messy.

It’s actually fun to see what they do next. They do a good job at keeping the energy level high and it keeps me invested. As far as jokes go, it’s not the funniest but it has some golden moments. And most importantly, there are no terrible jokes!

There are a few duds, but nothing painful or offensive at all. I did that spiel because this episode is one of the few on this list to be consistently enjoyable. It never slows down and gets boring or painful. Not every bit is great but it keeps giving us fun moments.

The plot itself may not seem like the most deep or interesting but it’s still one of the better Family Guy plot. It’s just keeps going and they keep up the entertainment value all the way through. I can’t exactly describe it but it just works.

The episode works itself to a really good ending that actually has a sweet moment that works pretty well. They even make a joke after it that isn’t insulting! It’s kind of lame but it works in context.

Sorry I’m not going into detail that much but this episode is different from the others. It’s more about just piling on stuff and having fun with the plot than having tons of character development, or even Comedy.

It’s a nice example of how the show can still keep me on my toes even after all these years. It goes in a lot of different directions and they are all interesting. It has a fun plot that keeps getting more interesting, it has funny jokes, and even a nice ending.

It may not be as interesting as some other entries, but it’s easily one of the most enjoyable for its plot and humor. It’s just a very good episode.
…Yeah, that’s all I got again. Let’s move on, we’re almost done.

2. Back to the Pilot

Season 10

Writer: Mark Hentemann

You wanna know exactly what inspired me to marathon Modern Family Guy to give it another chance? I stumbled upon this episode and liked I so much that I wanted if there any other gems.

Yes, it’s that good. This is another very simple one that works due to a genius set up.

Stewie and Brian go back in time to find a tennis ball Brian buried, which turns out to be the same day that the events of the pilot took place. Stuff ensues.

This is an example of genius executed perfectly. I mean, this episode is about going back to the show’s pilot and basically poking fun at how different it is. That’s an awesome idea and they do it really well.

And they don’t do it to say that Classic Family guy sucks or anything. They mostly poke fun at the animation errors and other weird stuff. Its playful mocking, not an insult. This is another one where my explanation is simple.

This episode works because they perfectly execute its concept. They poke fun at the pilot in tons of creative and funny ways. Of all the episodes on the list, this is probably the funniest.

Like Big Bang Theory, there’s no bad jokes and it’s enjoyable all the way through. But of course, there’s only so much you can do with the pilot so it goes in another direction that’s just as amusing.

Brian tells his past self about 9/11 so he can prevent it.

…Yeah. This is where the episode gets a bit divisive. Some people aren’t happy with this part for obvious reasons and others don’t mind it. ..I don’t mind it.
Mostly cuz they don’t make any really offensive jokes. There’s the obligatory Bush slam but it’s kept funny. They just use as a way to make the plot even more insane. Again, Big Bang Theory it just keeps going in insane directions.

But this one manages to be even funnier due to the time travel craziness. Things keep getting out of control and it just gets funnier and funnier. My favorite part is the Bad Future caused by 9/11 being stopped.

I won’t spoil all of it but there quite a few funny gags here, and spoilers, this segment is mostly in CGI and it’s rather impressive for this show’s budget. I won’t say why it’s in CGI but it’s interesting nonetheless.

When they fix their mistake and allow 9/11 to happen, they high five over their job well done. …And they dial it back because, them high fiving over 9/11 wouldn’t look too good out of context.

I laughed at this joke. Mostly because they know how messed it is. For once, I won’t spoil the rest of the episode. The fun is seeing how messed up everything gets. You can guess how this happens since it is a time travel story, but it’s still good.

I’m impressed by how funny this episode it is. There are a lot of funny clever gags and it has an energy that to it. I may be talking it up too much but it really is a funny episode with an interesting plot and a good concept executed nearly perfectly.

Of the episodes on this list, two of them are actually among my favorite episodes of the whole show. Number 1 is obviously one of them, and this is the other. Yes, it’s that enjoyable.

It’s clever, funny, and it stays that way until the very ending. All this and more makes this trip back to the pilot a very enjoyable indeed.

And of course, before we hit Number one…we gotta go through a few honorable mentions. There aren’t too many for obvious reasons but I have a couple.

12 and a half Angry Men: A fairly fun 12 angry men homage with a nice story.

Chap Stewie: I like the fun Stewie plot but I mostly like how well written Peter and Lois are here. They’re not even the focus but they are handled very well.

Three Kings: Decent anthology episodes with nice parodies. The misery one is my favorite.

Love Blacktually: Almost had a bad brain episode, but nope we get nice moments with him. And wow, Cleveland can be actually interesting sometimes. I hope he never gets a whole show to be dull though…

Our last one needs a bit more of an explanation…

Livin’ On a Prayer:

I just need to summarize what happens in this episode, and its message. Stewie befriends a boy who falls ill, and his parent refuse to give him treatment and do not use modern hospital treatment due to their religious beliefs as Christian Scientists, stating that they use “faith” as a medicine.

Long story short, Lois explains that even if they use faith of God as a medicine, people still have created modern medicine, which is also the possibility of what God may have allowed. She then states that if they really want God to answer their prayers, they should do the right thing for Scotty.

And they do.

Allow me to put this in perspective. This is a Family Guy episode about religion…that sympathized with the religious people. Instead of saying that they should hate God for not healing the kid, they argue that treatment is what God wants. They bring up a good point and make religious people look good and offer a solid point. They are natural on religion instead of being insulting to anyone.

This is still Family guy right?

So yeah, consider that number 12.

And my number one Modern Family Guy episode is…

1. Brian’s Play

Season 11

Writer: Gary Jenetti

It was a hard time picking between this and Back to the pilot for Number 1. In the end, I picked this because it pretty much defied all my expectations from the premise, among other reasons.

Brian finally gets one of his plays into the Quahog theatre and everybody loves it. Stewie then decides he wants to write a play and Brian reads it, he discovers that Stewie is a genius and Brian starts feeling bad about himself.

From both the title and premise, you’re probably expecting this to be another episode where Brian is a dick. But actually…no. Instead you get one of the more meaningful Family Guy episodes in recent memory.

How so? Well, by all accounts this should be bad because Brian is his usual snobby self at the start. But to be fair, they actually acknowledge this and make a few amusing jokes out of it.

Infact, this whole episode seems to be about bringing Brian down which is something he deserves at this point. And yet they create a story where you feel bad for him. When he finds out that Stewie’s play is great you do kind of get on his side as Brian sees that he shouldn’t have been so snobby about having a play getting good reviews from people in Quahog.

Eventually, Brian lies and tells Stewie his play is bad, but here’s the thing: Jasper told him to do so which means he just got bad advice. Yes, they remembered Jasper but not Tom’s son .Figure that one out.

When Brian does this, he lets him down gently and he’s not a prick about it. When Stewie finds out, he calls him out on it in the most awesome way possible.

“May every person that laughs at your sophomoric effort be a reminder of your eternal mediocrity, and pierce your heart like a knife.”

Stewie submits his play to New York and he brings Brian to the premiere where Brian’s play is bashed by some real writers. This really hurts Brian and Stewie starts to feel bad for him.

Brian pours his heart out to Stewie and says that he really hoped he would become successful but now Stewie will have done more at Age 1 (“Still?”) than Brian will have done in however old he is in dog years.

The entire 3rd act is where this one becomes the best. Despite this episode basically putting Brian down by calling him out for being a bad writer, it actually makes you feel bad for him.

Typically this would be bad, but Brian did nothing morally wrong in this case. They show us exactly why Brian was so smug, and why it hurt him to see Stewie being better than him. It feels like a personal story they wanted to tell instead of a cheap way to make us like Brian again.

Oh, and Stewie eventually changes his play so it sucks and it bombs. In other words, he ruined his play to help make Brian feel better. …And it works. No, not for Brian, but for the episode.

Do you know how hard it is to make the “indulge someone’s talents even though they aren’t very good” thing work. Make it so it isn’t hurting anyone. Plus the person in question did really need this.

I’m just shocked beyond all belief. At every turn, this episode does the right thing instead of the wrong thing. At the start, it looks like will be Brian Writes a Bestersell all over again. But instead they call Brian out.

You think this is a cheap ploy to get you to feel bad for Brian even though he doesn’t deserve. But instead, he does deserve because they take some titme out to dive into his character and explain what he is feeling.

This episode is great. I get that an episode shouldn’t be good simply because it isn’t Herpe the love Sore or whatever. But it goes beyond just making Brian likable. It goes out of its way to do everything right.

They call him out and then make us feel bad for him, without any of it being needlessly mean spirited. It makes Brian out to be a 3 dimensional character instead of the boring mouthpiece he has become.

This is the first time this has happened in a very long time, and even without the bad Modern Episodes, this would still be a very…mature story. Wow, I’m saying all this about a Modern Family guy episode.

Oh, and this episode has some good jokes with a few disturbing bits they actually go by fast and aren’t painful. That’s nice too.

Overall this episode defies all of your expectations and creates a mature story that makes Brian out to be very interesting and likable. It’s not just a great Modern Family guy episode. It’s a great family Guy episode in general. And that’s why it’s the best.

And those are my top 11 Modern Family guy episodes. I hope I showed that no matter how bad a show is, it can still produce a few gems here and there. Does this mean I kind of like Modern Family Guy?

…No. Despite these episodes, the show still sucks in general now and the bad ones are too bad for me to forgive. I just wanted to show you that no matter how I feel about a show, I can admit when it does something right.

I’ll even see about the next Season a shot despite how bad this previous Season was. Or at least I’ll watch an episode if it sounds good at all.

You know, this made want to do other “best of bad shows” lists. Expect more of those in the future. Actually, I want do a list for another Modern Era of a once loved show. Hmmm..…

COMING EVENTUALLY: TOP 11 MODERN FAIRLY ODD PARENTS EPISODES!

See ya.

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The Swan Princess 2

It's Diet Disney so of course it gets a sequel no one asked for

It’s Diet Disney so of course it gets a sequel no one asked for

Hello, Spongey here.

I don’t think I’ve done an “older” film in a little bit. And by older I mean a movie not from the 2000’s. So let’s fix that with a random movie I found!

Today’s film happens to be a direct to video sequel to a mildly popular film. A film that no one really needed a sequel to, but it got one anyway. Nothing too out of ordinary so far.

The film this is a sequel is, of course, 1994’s The Swan Princess. That animated film was part of a trend where animation studios decided to rip off Disney instead of doing anything interesting or now. But while a lot of these movies just feel into obscurity, this one was actually popular.

While it did bomb upon release, and it got mixed reviews, it was still popular to spawn several sequels and receive a fan base. The reaction is still mixed to this day, with some seeing it as one of the great non-Disney Animated Sequels, with others seeing it as a soulless Disney Cash in.

For this review, I naturally had to watch the first one and what did I think of it? …It alight. It was reasonably entertaining with good animation, a few decent songs, and couple likable characters. The main problem is that, yeah, it cribs a bit too much from Disney. It has a lot of the stuff we’ve seen before without a lot of variation. They tease something at the start but they just kind of forget about it.

But it does have a lot of heart and it’s tolerable enough, I suppose. I think there was room for a sequel that could improve on it. …Then it went Direct to Video and I lost hope. But hey, you never know. I hear it’s not that good but maybe I’ll like it.

I have seen one bit from it and …well it’s interesting, but we’ll get to that. We have the same director and writers, but a different cast (save for the voices of Odette and Puffin) which is always a good sign. You might be aware of the director: Richard Rich.

He worked at Disney directing the classic Fox and The Hound…and the not so classic Black Cauldron. He jumped ship and made some of his own movies which are hit or miss with people. He’s got Swan Princess…and The King and I. And Alpha and Omega…and its sequels.

Okay, mostly miss. But hey, we can’t hold that against him. Let’s just get into this sequel and see how it is.

This, is The Swan Princess: Escape from Castle Mountain

…Or Secret of the Castle, as Netflix likes to call it.

The movie opens in the woods, as some evil looking guy is setting up a bunch of traps. We then cut to back to the Kingdom of Insert Name here, is it is Odette and Derek’s Wedding anniversary.

Derek is late because of course he is. He’s busy doing important Castle stuff. Whose willing to bet he will be super late and that’s how our main conflict will start?

He is indeed late and he can’t make it for dinner because he must take care of a fire that was started over in the woods. Because no one else can take out forest fires, I guess.

He has the comedic sidekicks from the first one (French Stereotype, Sad turtle, and Puffin dude) try to stop that evil looking guy from getting away. But they suck at their jobs, so he ends up setting off those traps.

Thankfully, he is able to escape with his life, and the evil looking guy runs away.

“Don’t tell anyone, especially Odette. I don’t want her to worry”

Because that always turns out well.

He makes it back to his wife and it turns out he forget the anniversary. Oh sorry, I thought this was a fairy tale, not a sitcom.

“You’ve been busy”

“Yeah but that’s not excuse”

Whoa, he admits his mistake? Good on him!

“I’m gonna do better”

He’s not gonna do better.

The evil looking guy returns to the not at all suspicious looking lair of his master, Clavius. Through his ramblings to himself, we find out he is the partner of Rothbart, the villain from the first movie.

Rothbart betrayed him and drove him underground, hence why he was nowhere to be seen before. That and the writers had no idea they would be doing a sequel. He sent his minion to kill Derick so he can get some McGuffin from the Castle, but as we saw, he fails to do that. Also, his name is Knuckles.
Insert obvious joke here.

Clavius isn’t happy to hear this news and in true Swan Princess tradition, our villain has to over the top in a weird but awesome way. After his “THE WORLD WILL BE MINE” speech, we cut to the next day as Derick and some of his pals are trying to figure out exactly what is going on with this Knuckles guy.

He’s so deep into this that he calls of a picnic he set up to make up for forgetting the anniversary. And I sort of called it. You know, catching a guy who could post a threat to the kingdom is slightly more important than your dull love stuff …But it was a wedding anniversary so…meh.

Also, his Mom’s Birthday is tomorrow and he can’t do anything for it because of all this. Okay, now I’m on Odette’s side. You can set aside this stuff for a day to celebrate your Mother’s birthday, dude.

This prompts Odette to sing our first song, which is just her being sad about how Derick is busy and stuff. It’s pretty dull and forgettable. Moving on.

The next day, Uberta, the Mom, goes up in a hot air balloon to get to the Castle for her Birthday party. But it turns out to be a trap set up by Clavuis. Dun dun dun, I guess. Uberta whines like a bitch to him all the way to his lair, which annoys him. Which is kind of funny. I mean, you gotta love that this evil guy and his henchman are being intimidated by some prince’s mother.

They capture her anyway and they send Derrick a message, telling him about what happened. Derrick heads out to rescue her, which Jean Bob thinks is a bad idea.

So he sings about it. Yeah, it’s called “That’s what you do for a friend” so you can guess what it’s about. It’s pretty tolerable, but nothing too special.

“Cute. Catchy. Didn’t work”

Who asked you.

While Derick is out, Clavuis sneaks into castle and meets Odette. I’d ask how he snuck out without anyone noticing but…he’s a wizard so there you go.
He tells her about what he’s looking for, and about how Derick is walking into a trap.

Conveniently, Rothbart’s minion from the first one is a good guy who works for Oddete, and she knows where the forbidden arts are, so after overhearing this, she heads down to get them before the bad guy can.

Yeah, I didn’t mention the “her being a good guy” now thing cuz…the movie didn’t exactly introduce it very well. Also, she can talk more now.

They go through a few secret passages and find the forbidden arts. They take the orb so when Clavius comes down, he shouts NOOOO like he’s Darth Vader. They head back to Odette and now they must warn Derrick.

Puffin can’t fly so Odette asks Bridgit to turn her into a swan. …Cuz they don’t want the title to be a lie?

She gets her wish pretty quickly and she heads out. Clavius pops to take the orb which leads to a chase scene set to No fear, for some reason. This scene is so wacky that I wonder if I have the right movie on.

…But some of it is pretty funny, to be honest.

Derrick is on his epic journey, plowing through a bunch of traps when he is finally done in by some quicksand. Thankfully, a Swan is strong enough to get him out of there.

Odette takes him back to the castle while Clavius finds the location of the orb because animal sidekicks suck at hiding things.

He takes it easily and escapes in his hot air balloon, but our animal sidekicks manage to stow away. Man, things gets temporarily resolved really quickly in this movie.

Calvius heads back to Ubetra and transfers the forbidden arts to him, giving him ultimate power.

“The power…to create! The power…to change! The power…to destroy!”

How does he celebrate? By singing of course! Yep, we have our villain song, called “You gotta love it”. And…well you remember how I said I saw one part of this movie before?

This was that part. I stumbled upon this song and …it’s awesome. I genuinely love this villain song. It’s basically a rock song by him gloating about him evil and awesome his powers are, and while the rock part is…weird, it’s still awesome.

The singer is clearly having a ton of fun and that’s very contagious. It’s really catchy and memorable. As far as villain songs go, it’s one of the best hidden gems in its genre. It’s not the smartest but it’s just too much fun.

I’d go as far to say it’s better than the villain song in the first one. Yes, really. Regardless of this movie is, at least it gave us this song.
“Zow, rock and roll!”

After that, Derick and Odette arrive near the entrance to this lair to rescue Derrick’s mommy. Derrick gets into a final battle with Knuckles and when the baddie ends up dangling over a cliff, Derrick saves him because he’s nice.

…Then Knuckles puts Derrick in the same position. That’s both cool and stupid.

It doesn’t really because of course he gets out easily with Odette’s help. Meanwhile, Clavius has had enough of Uberta’s shit but he can’t shut up her no matter what he does. No, he doesn’t try killing her because that would imply he’s smart.

And just when he is about to do something, Derrick comes in to battle him. The fight itself is actually pretty cool thanks to Clavius powers.

Eventually, Derrick gets the orb and starts to escape. Clavius puts up a good fight but the orb is eventually destroyed by simply falling from a great high.

The forbidden arts is pretty weak, I gotta say. Also, he already took the powers so why does it even matter?

This causes the lair to start blowing up and our heroes escape. Odette is still a Swan but they will find a way to change her back. Wait, didn’t Bridget turn her into a Swan? Can’t she just…change her back? Or did I miss something?

Oh, and Jean Bob died. I didn’t mention that cuz I thought it was a Disney Death…but nope he’s dead. That…sucks since he was the best of the sidekicks but he did get annoying sometimes, so I don’t care.

He and Odette are taken to the light, in the hopes that the moon will turn her back into a human like it did in the first movie.
Spoilers, it works. Yay, I guess.

But on top of turning her back to normal, it brings Jean Bob back to life. …Because moonbeams do EVERYTHING now. Oh, and he starts making bad jokes which kind of cheapens the moment.

Either way, everything is back to normal and everyone celebrates. Later, our “lovely’ couple finally has their picnic and while Derrick goes have business, he chooses Odette this time.

Oh yeah, that was a plot point. Glad it was so important and was resolved incredibly well.

They kiss and…roll credits. Yeah, it’s a cheapquel so of course it has an abrupt ending. By the way, this movie is only 1 hour and 6 minutes. Pretty short which is…good for me I guess.

Might as well just continue listening to the credits…and there’s a a rap version of No Fear.

I’m done.

Final Thoughts:

Don’t expect a huge summary here cuz I don’t have a lot to say. This was pretty…meh. Given that it is a cheap sequel to a movie that wasn’t that great, I thought it would terrible. But it’s just…meh.

It’s not even memorable. It’s bearable but there’s nothing here besides that awesome song that makes it really worth watching. It’s just really bland and forgettable. But at least it’s not as bad as I thought it would be.

There’s not much of a point of going into the story or characters since there really isn’t anything to say. As a sequel, it doesn’t really add anything in terms of development or anything like that.

The story is pretty basic which isn’t bad but isn’t really anything special either. They have that stuff with Derrick being busy but it was weak and they resolved very quickly at the end. Lame.

The characters are pretty much the same, except even less interesting. The writing fumble when it comes to the Derrick/Odette I mentioned means they don’t have too much going on. Derrick has some badass moments but that’s really about it.

The Comedy sidekicks are sometimes funny, and sometimes annoy. So yeah, they are the same. The villain was pretty entertaining but nothing too specials. The songs were just there, except for the villain song, which is amazing.

The animation is average. It’s a downgrade in that typical Direct to Video fashion. There’s a number of mistakes but its passable overall.

…See what I mean? I’m not getting a lot to go off here. I’m sure other people can find reasons to find it genuinely bad but I just found it very …meh. It’s a typical cash grab sequel that has no real reason to exist.

It has some enjoyable moments and like I said, it is bearable, but it’s not really worth watching. It’s…meh. It doesn’t ruin the original movie for me, if that helps.

And there’s at least 3 more of these things. Yay.

Not much to say here. It’s a very meh movie. Give it a shot if it sounds good, but stay away if you are expecting anything great…or memorable.

Grade C+

Hopefully our next one is more notable. …Oh, the latest Tinkerbell movie came out on Netflix the other day?

Yeah, that’ll do.

See ya.

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How to Build a Better Boy

With a premise like this, you couldn't build a better movie.

With a premise like this, you couldn’t build a better movie.

Hello, Spongey here.

Hey kids, it’s that time again! That’s right, it’s Disney Channel Movie time! Yep, after waiting a bit too long it’s time I got to the latest Disney Channel Movie…that is on Netflix. The actual latest movie is pending at the moment.

I would have gotten to this one sooner if Netflix didn’t put up this one BEFORE Zapped. I’m not sure why that happened but Zapped is there now…after I reviewed it. Good going on.

Anyway, now we’re finally covering this movie. I must say I was looking forward to this one for the premise alone. Everything about it seemed so silly and hilariously dumb. That’s exactly how I like my DCOM’s.

Let’s face it, the last two DCOM’s before this were a bit underwhelming. Cloud 9 and Zapped were alright but lacked the fun factor most “Not Good” DCOM’s tend to have. Zapped almost had it but lost it.

When I saw the trailer for this, I knew it would make up for all that. I saw it on Premire night as usual, and …yes, it met all my expectations. Now it’s time to share this amazing piece of art with you.

But of course, we have to discuss the people behind it. For one, the stars that are featured here. This one features China Anne McClaine and Kelli Berglund. China makes perfect sense, and some may recall her from A.N.T Farm …and also Grown Ups but that never happened.

She’s alright. She had some decent chops on her main show and could get nice and expressive in her best moments. Kelli is a bit more interesting, because she’s mostly known for Lab Rats…a Disney X D Show. She had never been in any real Disney Channel thing before this, so it’s a testament to how popular she got that she’s in this.

Then again, this isn’t the first time that happened. Remember Olivia Holt in Girl Vs Monster? Will this lead to her getting her own show like with that one? We’ll see. Anyway, she’s alright. Not the best, but fine, I suppose. She wasn’t the best actor on that show but she did okay.

We’ll see how these two manage in a film in a moment. As for the writer, he gave us Space Chimps. ..We’ll see. The director is Paul Hoen. That’s right, there were two Paul Hoen DCOM’s in the same year.

He’s appeared a lot on here and his DCOM’s tend to be of the guilty pleasure type. He switches between somewhat dull stuff like Let It Shine and Cloud 9 to a lesser extent, and more energetic stuff like Camp Rock 2 and Dadnapped.

Spoilers, this falls into the latter. But exactly how crazy is it? Let’s stop talking and finally get into it.

This, is How to Build a Better Boy

This teenybopper Disney movie opens at a secret morality base as tons of people running around, and this leader is talking.

“You lost track of a billion dollar weapon”

…Well, that’s one to open a DCOM.

Apparently some really dangerous criminals are here with that weapon.

“Give yourselves up!”

They comply and our evil criminals are two teenage girls. Oh what a hilarious misunderstanding. Jokes aside, this opening is awesome. It has over the top insanity mixed with two teenagers.

It sums up the movie quite nicely.

Naturally, we get our opening credits as we cut to 2 days earlier. We are introduced to our main character, Mae and Gabby, played by the aforementioned Kelli and China. We see them at school as they are wearing nerd glasses and have finished a test in only 9 minutes.

Yeah…I don’t buy these girls as nerds. Well, not Bree here anyway.

With their test done, they are allowed to leave class to take care of some of their duties. Mae is a tutor and China is…doing some other thing. She manages to help her student solve some hard problems through the power of football, and they get along rather nicely.

I don’t remember if he plays a big role in the story or not. Later, Mae tells Gabby about this and she tells her not to hold her breath about getting a date to home coming.

“Boys are a distraction”

Okay guess the entire conflict of the film right now. Chances are, you get got it right without even needing to know the premise.

Anyway, Jayden asks (via text) to meet Mae after football practice and this is great news for her. Also, his text is poorly written.

“Even Autocorrect can’t help this kid”

I know that feel.

Despite Gabby’s misgivings, Mae decides to go.

“To quote Ceaser, Cowards die a thousand deaths”

“You know Ceaser got stabbed, right?’

I think I’m starting to like Gabby a bit more out of the two.

So they go to his practice, and unfortunately they run into our Alpha Bitch for the evening, Nevaeh, played by Ashley Argoata. Once again I must point that this actor is 22, and is played a high schooler.

But at least that means it’s okay to think she’s hot. By the way, she was in a few episodes of Lab Rats, which I don’t think is a coincidence.
She acts exactly how you expect her to act, and it’s pretty awesome. She doesn’t approve of Mae wanting to be with Jayden cuz after all…you gotta bop to the top.

…Wait…

“Why do people even like you?”

She’s pretty…that’s about it.

Of course, Nevaeh happens to be dating Jayden, or at least that’s what she claims. He comes over and when Nevaeh asks him if he will ask her to the dance, he hesitates but says yes. If you’re gonna ask if he’s gonna ask…than doesn’t that mean YOU asked HIM?

Needless to say, Mae is sad and humiliated. So to save face, she claims to already have a boyfriend. She claims his name is Albert. Yeah, this lies will end well.

“What did you just get us into?”

After this, Mae’s brother shows, and he’s played by Matt Shively. You know, that annoy guy from Paranormal Activity 4? I’m so glad he’s here! The two go home and think about what they started.

“Why is Jayden even with her?”

Because writer loves the “nice guy is with Alpha bitch for no reason” cliché.

“Boys are like old smart phones”

Insert Zapped joke here.

“We don’t we invent a better one?”

You mean…Bad Hair day a better boy?

Mae’s Dad is a video game designer person, so they decided to use some of his tech to build a virtual boy.

“You want to hack into my Dad’s secure network and build me some high def boyfriend?”

When oyu say it like that it sounds hilariously insane. Also, I fail to see how this will help since Nevaeh will ask to meet the boy in some way.
“What’s the deal, it’s a video game company, not the department of Defense”

It cuts to the Department of Defense. Haw.

As it turns out, Mae’s Dad works for the Government and the Video Game thing is just a front. He is helping make a robot weapon thing. Because that turned out so well in insert sci fi movie here.

That night, Gabby hacks into Dad’s thingy, which means she hacks into the robot thing. They don’t question why the program keeps acting like this is a secret project instead of a video game.

They program this thing to pretty much be Mae’s idea of a perfect boy. He is blond with blue eyes, and while he’s super cute, he doesn’t know it.

“Which makes him even cuter!”

Ugh.

“He would super polite, almost Canadian”

CINEMMA SINS: That’s Racist.

All jokes aside, this scene is actually pretty decent. We see just how much thought Mae put into this, and what it means to her, and the acting isn’t too bad here. I also like how it cuts between them and the robot being made.

With that, they create the perfect virtual, but unknown to them, they make the perfect robot boy. So that’s two movies in a row where our main characters somehow ends up with a dangerous weapon made by their Dad. Weird.

Anyway, all this did quite a number on Dad’s tech that is back at home and it’s a bit crispy. And of course Dad is coming home at this very moment, and Bart (the brother) promises to try to cover for them.

As that is going on, we see the epic rise of the Mae’s perfect Robot Boy and he escapes the lab. Dun dun dun!

Back at home, we have awkward jokes with Bart trying to distract Dad. He’s able to do so and he promises he will help fix the stuff our heroes kind of fried. The next morning, Dad is called to the lab because of the …mess that new robot boy made.

Speaking of which, later at school Naveeh says that Albert added her on MyBookTwitbr, and our heroes find that odd since, as far as they know, he isn’t real. Of course the Alpha Bitch thinks it’s just a fake profile.

But then Albert appears at school, much to the shock of everyone. He’s pretty much a parody due at its finest. Okay, you may get out your Flash Sentry jokes.

Back at Dad’s work, they figure out that someone hacked into the place and made the world first robot boy. They can’t figure out where the robot is for some contrived reason I don’t wanna get into.

Anyway, our heroes don’t question where the hell Albert came from and Mae just rolls with it. Gabby questions it a bit but Mae is just…meh. Though to be fair, I guess she’s just used to hanging out with bonic super humans.

We get a montage of Albert being the perfect robot boy as he hangs out with Mae. A bit too early for a romantic montage but ah well. Actually, the pacing is a bit off here. I mean it didn’t’ even take 20 full minutes for all this stuff to happen, and we are now at the 35 minute mark.

But to be fair, I still got the general gist of the characters and I’m not lost, so I can roll with it.

Gabby thinks Albert is some guy working for the video game company. Of course someone as smart as her believes that very flawed theory. Of course Albert denies it and acts like the perfect robot boy he is, which just makes Gabby even more confused.

Bart calls her up for some other matter and when he tells her about Albert, he automatically assumes he is something they created for real. See, he gets it without a bullshit theory!

Anyway, we cut to later as Albert tries out for sports, and of course his robot powers make him amazing.

“Unbelievable!”

“More like unpossible”

Like Ralph failing English!

After that pointless bit, we get Albert and Mae being romantic and stuff. It’s here where Albert asks Mae to homecoming. Good for her, I guess.

Gabby doesn’t agree because she already thinks this boy is going to change their friendship. Looks like that pacing issue is back. Before they can argue some more, Albert sings something for Mae, because of course he does.

He sings “Love you like a love song”…which is a Selena Gomez song. That’s…surreal. Back at the Lab, they find out that some bad guys want to steal the robot weapon boy. They are baffled that someone could hack into their place into they remember that Dad has some tech in his house. The boss’s reaction to hearing this is priceless.

We cut to some bad guys sitting in a van outside the building, and of course they are foreigners. They know that their prize is outside and now they must try to find it. And now this is the most insanely awesome DCOM ever.

Gabby’s goes to Mae’s place as Bart discovers that Dad is indeed some government guy. They figure out that Gabby actually hacked the Pentagon and not a game company.

“I designed a highly mobile undetectable handsome wholesome speed reading ukulele playing dreamy eyed robot solider! …And I set him up with my best friend”

When you say it that way it sounds hilariously stupid. It also sounds like a forced trailer line when you say it that way.

The bad guys immediately storm in as our heroes hide in the closet. They trash the place, find some find, and leave. Of course, no one outside saw or heard them doing this.

But the government people are aware of the break in and almost immediately after the previous bit, tons of people, including Dad and the Boss storm in. Gabby and Bart come out and try to act like everything is okay. Dad claims that his pals are just consultants for a video game.

He expects them to buy that for some reason. Not sure how you will explain this to the neighbors who see them and likely know better.

“That is a bunch of-“

“Common sense!”

You know-for kids!

The bad guys are watching this from their van, as they now know about Albert and think the kids will lead them to him. Wait, no one is suspcipous of the evil black vans? And the bad guys thought it was a good idea to stick around when their enemy showed up?

Dad’s buddies leave and our dynamic duo heads to the Homecoming game because that is where Mae and Albert are. Wait, we’re up to Homecoming in some way already? That was fast. We’re up to 51 minutes now, by the way.

Gabby pulls Mae aside to tell her about all this stuff going on and while that is going on, the bad guys sneak in and one takes Albert aside. And when they are out of everyone’s sight, Albert kicks his ass.

It’s amazing and it makes for another good trailer moment!

Natrually, Mae doesn’t believe Gabby about the Robot thing, which I am mixed on. On one hand, that is a better explantions than their fake boy just randomly existing for no reason. But…since she has been looking for love for a while and Albert is so perfect, I can see why she’s not willingly to believe that he might not be perfect.

But we can all agree this is pretty cliché and forced, even by the standards of this cliché. Also, Gabby simply says “He’s a robot” and doesn’t go any deeper in the slightest, making this scene weird. Just tell her that full story!

Oh wait, then the movie would be over in like 5 minutes.

They argue a bit and eventually storm off. A bit later, after the game starts, the guy Albert attacked comes to and tells his friends about what happened. Because Albert can see them coming, they need some device that can shut the robot down from far away.

As a side note, I just noticed that Mae and Gabby’s nerd glasses are gone without explanation. It’s not major but it’s just…a thing I noticed. Anyway, Bart agrees with what I said and thinks it’s dumb that Gabby didn’t say that Albert is a freaking government experiment solider thing.

Speaking of Albert, A football player is out of commission and the coach asks him to fill in. Also, the Alpha Bitch is a cheerleader because of course she is.

Naturally, Albert does insanely well and helps them win the game. This is important because this team never wins. It’s so huge that a cop shows the video of the win to one of his partners. And yeah, the cop happens to be one called by the Government and thus they now know that their Robot Weapon is out and about.

Eh, I’ve some worse ways to get this kind of info out.

“We’ve found the prototype”

“And he’s dating my daughter”

Wah wah.

While the kids are doing their slow motion celebration dances, the bad guys come in to use their tech to shut down Albert, as the Government guys pop up as well.

Gabby takes this chance to tell Mae the full truth and the bad guys lose track of Albert. They are then captured. ….Lamest defeat ever. And yes, that is their defeat. We never see them again. LAAAAAME.

And that leads us the scene from the opening. The government guys have our heroes surrounded so they come out and reveal themselves. They are taken to the lab where the Boss guy gives us a recap.

“You hacked a Government network and stole a weapon so secret, congress doesn’t even know it exists. You hijacked a prized creation. The most advanced lab on Earth.”

If it’s so darn secret, why did you let a guy with a teenager daughter at home keep part of it there where someone could easily get to it? And I don’t think any of us are buying the fact that Gabby is so smart she could hack into all that. …Yeah, took me awhile to bring that up.

Also, remember this all happened because they thought he was a game guy and thus they were just making a fake computer program. So it’s kind of all your fault.

“But it’s clear your intentions were purely romantic. You didn’t want a high tech war machine. Just a Boy Toy. Take them home doctor”

…You’re not at all worried that a teenage girl was able to hack into your “Advanced” lab? Whatever. He says that Albert was rebooted, and he returned to his default mission: Saving the free world from danger.

So he’s off doing important things? Heh, cool, I think Mae will respect th-okay I can’t type that with a straight face. She doesn’t like this and The Boss guy says they can’t speak a word about any of this.

“Forget Albert Banks ever existed”

I’m not sure how you will cover this up but if Transformers 2 is any indication, I think you can do it somehow. And right after I say that they tell us that, yeah, they were able to cover it up by blaming some other guy. Okay.

As you can imagine, Mae isn’t exactly happy with this. Honey, you have to remember that you programmed him to be your perfect boy. Thus, he’s not an actual boy who loves you.

He’s faker than …well most fictional high school movie love interests. And that’s saying something!

“I can see that Albert is wire and metal, and microchips. But he is so much more than that. And it was like that from the first spark”

So our writers had 3 options: Make this a story where a girl realizes the difference between real love and fake love then forgets the boy, a story about how even fake robot love can become real, or a story where the girl and robot end up together with no one really caring that he’s fake.

Guess which one we’re going with.

Gabby doesn’t point THAT out, but instead says stuff that Mae can rebuttal. Would you believe we’re still not done yet, even though we should be?

We cut to the next day, as it is finally Homecoming, and Mae has to robot to cuddle up with. She still doesn’t have Jaden either. Oh wait, he still exists? Okay then you can get rid of Albert cuz she clearly has back up boy!

But of course, against all odds, Albert shows up. Mae doesn’t question anything and just heads in with him. But then suddenly, the Government guys show up.

“We knew his mission would lead him here, but we couldn’t let Mae warn him”

You had him, why couldn’t you had reprogrammed him like you claimed you did? And is this still going on?

“Albert will come peacefully if you let him finish his mission”

“You mean kissing your daughter?”

“…Yeah”

There are a lot of things in this movie that sounds hilariously stupid when you saw it out loud. This is one of them.

After some coaxing, The Boss guy backs down and says they will help Albert finish his mission. So now some government guys will help a teenage girl kiss a robot boy.

This movie is amazing.

Back at the dance, Naveeh, who exists again, isn’t happy that Albert’s back. She plans to tell everyone some kind of truth about Albert, and then Jaden dumps her. There was a transition, I’m just bad at summarizing.

It’s time to crown Homecoming Queen, and of course it’s Mae instead of the Alpha Bitch. …Because the Government Guys stuffed the Ballot box. Okay then.

Pissed off, Naveeh runs up and tells everyone that Albert is a machine. They take it figuratively so her plan fails. Wait, how did she figure this out anyway? She storms off and we never see her again.

What is with this movie and incredibly pointless villains with lame defeats?

Anyway, it turns out Jaden likes Mae but he was too afraid to admit it cuz everyone expected him to with someone like Naveeh. Okay that’s cool but people expected Mae to be with someone like Albert so…yeah.

Gabby apologizes to Mae for all the stuff that happened. They have a nice moment where they make up and yada yada yada. And now it’s time for some moonlight dance thing, where Mae and Albert finally have their moment that finishes his mission.

They have their nice moment …but Gabby notices see the army guys and thinks they will take Albert. But she backs off because Mae has “got this”. Okay.
They have their sweet little moment but before the kiss..

“I can’t”

Hmmm?

“I invented the idea of you, because I was hurt… I wasn’t brave enough to know that if he didn’t like me for me, that’s his problem. I only get one first kiss. I don’t know when it’s going to happen…”

Whoa, they actually realize everything I pointed out? That’s awesome! Score one for me and…about 50 for the Disney Channel.

Albert is fine with this but then she sees the Government guys.

“You know the Army was coming but you showed up anyway.”

“I had a mission…and now my work is done”

I must go back to my home Planet.

ALBERT DIED ON THE WAY BACK

So, what next?

“Initiate self destruct”

“Goodbye Mae”

That escalated quickly. And I think my Home Planet joke was true because he blasts off into space to blow up. And of course the kids all think this was a big show put on by the school. Sure, why not.

But…yeah that happened. Someone in a DCOM kind of died…sort of…I think .That’s…pretty weird. I’ll give them credit for realizing that fake robot love is dumb and having a semi mature moment. It’s nice.

The Government Boss guy is a bit chocked up over his ruined plans but he’ll be fine. Mae bumps into Jaden and they hit it off. Okay, so I spoke too soon when I bitched about the movie doing something different from what a normal writer would do.

Also, Gabby kind of hooked up with Bart. …Yeah he likes her, I didn’t mention that because it was pointless, and it still is.

So with everyone is happy and dances the night away. And of course, this is where the credits roll. How is that they dragged out the ending yet still made it abrupt? Ah well, still better than Cloud 9 in this regard.

Final Thoughts:

Well… that was…something. After a few rather dull DCOM’s, I wanted something as insane, fun, or just plain dumb as some of my “Favorites”. This…fits the bill. This has to be one of the craziest DCOM’s in a awhile.

And I loved it.

You know me, I love for this stuff, so how could I hate it? This movie is just full of insane stupidity from start to finish and it was so much fun. I’m pretty sure they knew they were making something dumb so they just did whatever the hell they wanted.

The premise alone gives us so many questions and the actual movie raises even more. People tend to find “offensive” in any DCOM so I wouldn’t take it too seriously if people bitched about this movie.

But to be fair, I couldn’t exactly blame them with the …stuff they bring up. But with the ending, I think they should kind of shut up. Before I move on, I should give them credit for somewhat touching on some deep themes. What “True love” means and all that.

In the end, Mae realizes that she created Albert and his love isn’t real. Thus, she pretty much lets him blow up. They could have just put them together or did something weird, but instead they did that. You gotta give them some credit.

True, they don’t go too deep into these themes so you could still bitch, but I don’t quite car. It’s a minor thing I honestly liked.

Now, this is a hard one to review for me cuz it’s so insane that I couldn’t talk about it like I do with other movies, by looking at the story and stuff. But I’ll try. The story is fairly cliché and of course a good amount of the clichés are rushed, from the friend’s arguing to the Alpha Bitch.

And it’s in mixed in with an insane concept that makes no sense in slightest. If you want to look at it critically, the story works okay sense it uses that concept to do some interesting things. Though it does a pacing problem, so everything moves too fast and a result, some plot points are rushed and become pointless.

As far as the main romance goes…it’s weird. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to buy it as a normal romance. I don’t, because they don’t flesh out very well and Albert is just a robot with little personality, and only does what does because he was told to.

But the emotion kind of helps it. Given the position Mae is in, I did kind of feel bad for her and see why she stuck with him. This has some honest emotion in it so I have to give it credit where credit is due.

And while it is sort of predictable, I did like the ending. Hey, with how it was going, I figured they wouldn’t address some of the stuff I brought up. As a whole, the story and the movie itself is everything you expected it to be.

You can’t be mad so it’s so stupid and insane. But deep in this craziness I do some effort put into this, like all DCOM’s. But with the ending, I especially see this. Oh, and in case you still wonder, I do think this is one of the more enjoyable Paul Hoen directed ones. It’s got enough energy and emotion to make it fine.

It may not be as crazy as I make it sound, but given the concept and execution, it’s one of the weirder ones I’ve reviewed. Character wise, it’s what I expected. Only the leads do anything while the others are pointless.

But as far as leads go, they were okay. I thought the actors did a decent with China getting some funny lines. They aren’t the most interesting, but Gabby learns a nice lesson and honestly, I started to like Mae by the end.

They did a good job at making us see where she’s coming from and that helps make the ending work. And honestly, her acting was a lot better than I expected. Not that I think she’s bad, it’s just better than normal.

The rest, like I said, are just there. Bart is kind of annoying, and the Dad is just there to start the plot. But if it helps, I thought Dad and the Government people were a lot of fun with their over the top reactions. Albert is just…there for obvious reason. Jaden is there, and Naveeh was really disappointing.

When she is onscreen, she’s fun but she’s given little to do. She’s there to start the plot and that’s it. The actor helps make her fun but if she given as much screen time as the chick in Zapped, then she would have been a lot better.

Overall, this is another fun Guilty Pleasure DCOM. It has an insane premise and the execution is so dumb that it was a lot to fun to make fun of it. On top of that, it had some nice heart and decent acting.

If you’re like me and like mocking dumb DCOM’s and don’t find them painful, you’ll dig the hell out of it. But if you follow me, you’ve decided if you like my appreciation of them or not, so I don’t care.

Grade: B

Yeah, I’ll ditch the spate grades and just combine them from now on.

Next time, we’re going back a bit for a sequel no one asked for. That narrows it down, eh?

See ya.

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Jessie-Coffee Talk

Jessie is property of Disney

Hello, Spongey here.

Well, I’m still punishing myself with bad TV, and today we get a particularly weak one. And once again, it’s a Disney Sitcom. I swear, I’ll get back to Nick very soon…

It comes to us from good ol’ Jessie. Oh boy this show. I’ll get into it in bigger detail at some point but I have to set the stage for this review, so I must say something now.

If you want you the short version, this one is about a woman, played by Debby Ryan, who comes to New York looking to make it big, but ends up as a nanny for the kids of a rich family. Hilarity ensues.

I’ll say this: It’s cool to have a Disney sitcom where the title character is a legal adult…at least in age and hotness. Not so much in terms of maturity. The thing about this one is that it has some of the…weaker moments of the Disney Sitcoms on right now (even more so than I Didn’t do It, which I’ll get to…) but also some of the better moments.

I’ll get into the latter some other time but we’re here to discuss the former. It can have some fairly mean spirited moments and sometimes it can be more depressing than funny. …But Debby Ryan is in it so I have to watch it.

That and it still has effort put into and all that. But the mean spirtiness is still an issue and that leads us to today’s episode. It takes an issue the series has always had and makes it even worse. This one is gonna be bad, so strap in.

It’s worth noting that this is from Season 3, which is easily the weakest Season due to having more episodes like this. But you know what’ messed up? In production order, this is the SEASON FINALE, not counting the Liv and Maddie crossover, which falls outside the Season.

Ouch.

Without further ado, let’s get this over with.

This, is Coffee talk

Writer: Jessica Lopez

She was written no other episode. Bet you can’t tell. The director is more interesting but we’ll get to them at the end.

The episode starts with Jessie relaxing, as Emma and Zuri tell her that there Justin Timberlake is singing in the park that night. …Could have picked someone slightly more revleant to teens interest, but that’s good enough.

They run off to get in line for tickets and we get the intro. ..That was quick. After that, we join Luke and Ravi as Ravi is trying to help Luke study for a Spanish test. Yeah, Luke isn’t doing well at all. Sorry to spoil that.

Bertram comes in and Ravi tells him that he uses his Coffee maker to make gross Lizard drink, so Bertram says “she” is ruined now. …Yeah, characterizing his stuff is a running gag.

We cut to slightly later as he mourns the death of…his coffee maker.

MR KRABS: What a baby.

Thankfully, Ravi comes in with a new Coffee maker…that Bertram is …into right away. Yeah, this is our subplot and it’s the one the episode is named after. Weird. And well…it’s another case where the subplot is actually good…in a weird way.

You’ll see…in a second as it turns out this is a high tech Coffee maker that can talk ,hence the title. Bertram and the…thing hit it off right away. …Let’s get back to the main plot.

After a while of waiting in line, Jessie is able to score V.I.P. wrist bands to the concert. Her ex-boyfriend is Justin’s pet physic. Yes, Debby Ryan here has multiple boys who decided to dump her.

And now this is the most unrealistic TV show ever made.

There is a problem…she got two passes, and there are three of them. Oh fudge, it’s THAT plot. This plot is hard to get right, since it usually makes everyone except the ticket/prize owner look bad. Even some of the more okay takes on this, such as The Ticket Master have issues.

So what makes this show think it can do it right? Spoilers, it doesn’t.

Right away, the kids try to kiss up to Jessie so they can go to the concert. And right away, Zuri sabotages Emma’s plan to make her look bad. Wow, I hate Zuri already. That was fast.

“Zuri’s like a bond villain with a bedtime!”

Desperate, Emma turns to Ravi for help. He goes along because Emma promises some dumb thing. …What’s Bertram up to?

“And that why One Direction owes everything to The Beatles”

…What’s Jessie up to?

Despite that line, the…thing still quite likes Bertram. Its name is Serena so we’ll call it that.

Luke walks in one this and Serena starts chatting it up with Luke. She happens to know Spanish and Luke gets the idea to have her help tutor him. Bertram…isn’t up for it.

“Come on Serna, I’ll change your filter…don’t worry, I’ll look away”

Ravi helps Emma get revenge on Zuri by telling her that they have a set up a meet and greet with Justin. She is caught by security guys, trying to get in and Emma pops up to tell them to make sure Zuri doesn’t set foot here again.

Yeah, needless to say neither party is very likable in this situation.

Bertram is with Serena in the park and when he leaves to do something, Luke shows up and takes her. …Okay.

Jessie gets her wrist bands in the mail…except there is only one. …That’s…kind of different but somehow worst.

“That means I have to sneak out without anyone spotting me?”

Oh yeah, we gotta make sure NO ONE is likable in this episode. Got it. At least Ravi is…mostly okay at the moment.

Ravi tells Emma and Zuri the truth about how Jessie plans to use the one wrist band on herself. When they start planning revenge, Ravi suggest joining forces so they make really make sure Jessie isn’t going to the concert.

Speak too soon. Yeah, the problem here is a bit obvious: unlikable characters are terrible. But we’re not at the worst of it yet.

After a commercial, Emma offers Jessie a massage. Jessie goes along with it because when one of your normally bitchy-y kids does that, they are clearly up to something good, right?

Of course this is all a trap to tie Jessie to a table and threaten her to cough up the wrist band. And this is…almost the worst of it. There’s having your character bicker of wanting ticket, then there is TORTURING someone until they get it.

And Ravi is going along with it here. What the hell?! You can argue that he thought Jessie was doing something wrong by taking the band for herself but even he wouldn’t go this far!

After a bit of…coaxing, Jessie gives away the location of the wrist band. But…there’s still only two kids who want to guy, and one wrist band. And…Ravi knew that and wanted to keep it for himself.

Okay, this is character derailment at its finest!

Let’s get back to the best romance ever told. Luke is getting Spanish lessons from Serna when Bertram walks in. He…doesn’t take it well.

“Serena, I thought I was the only man you loved!”

“This is not what it looks like!”

This scene has dramatic Spanish music….and this is now the weirdest thing ever. Luke informs her about Carol, the previous Coffee maker and she gets totes jelly. …Okay that was painful to type.

They fight until they trip and accidentally break Serena. …Considering that she was treated as a character…that makes this the darkest moment in a regular Disney Sitcom.

Her voice thingy still works but Ravi’s Lizard eats it. …Ew. Thankfully, Luke still knows the Spanish he learned so he leaves. And I guess Serena is just fine now since Bertram says they will get through this even know she’s in the body of a Lizard.

This show is weird. I’ll say my piece on this plot at the end, but now back to the crappy plot. Ravi is still keeping the wristband hostage but Emma and Zuri come in to spring a trap.

It doesn’t work and Ravi tries to run but is stopped by Jessie. Everyone starts arguing until Ravi yells at them to stop.

“Look at yourselves”

Wait, one minute he’s right there, doing crappy stuff, and now he’s preachy? Okay then.

Ravi scolds them for going insane over something stupid, and Jessie agrees.

“None of us deserve to go to that concert”

You got that right.

“Ravi, cut it up”

Oh hey, they are fixing my problem. It turns out this was just to make a point and create a nice moral. Just like in most takes on this plot, it’s just here to tell us not to…go crazy over something stupid.

Okay, I can roll with it…

Ravi cuts it up and while it is tough on them, they see that they kind of deserve it. I could bitch about how they just kind of go with this, but we only have a tiny bit left, so whatever.

A bit later, everyone calms down and tries to watch the concert from the terrace. But then they look at the cut up wrist band…and see that it’s fake. They look down at the concert and…

“Look, there he is!”

“I can’t believe he conned us!”

Like before, I’ll rant in the Final Thoughts because I want to comment on the finale joke. Luke comes in and they see that Betram is at the concert with the Lizard. OTP?

“At least he’s moved on from Cofeee makers…does Carol know?”

How the hell did Jessie not know all this crap was going on? That last bit wasn’t’ exactly quiet.

And that’s the end. Yeah, abrupt and weak but that’s not the problem. I think you can tell the obvious problem with this terrible ending, right? It’s a slap in the face and huge character derailment…but I’ll get into it…now.

Final Thoughts:

This one’s pretty easy to explain. Now, I will say that I actually enjoy the subplot in a WTF way. It’s so weird and over the top that it’s funny and actually worth watching. I suggest watching it just to see how something like this could be in an actual show.
But other than that, and maybe a couple jokes, this one sucked.

The main problem is that everyone is unlikable. Everyone is a horrible dick and at no point do you really like anyone. Everyone is bad to each other and it’s not very funny. Yes, this is an issue with the show in general, but it’s never been as bad as it is here.

Usually at least Jessie or Ravi would be likable, but nope. Jessie is as selfish as the rest so when she is tortured, you can’t exactly say it’s undeserved. But it’s still painful to watch all the way same. As for Ravi…my god.

Of all the Bad Disney Sitcom episodes, this has the worst character derailment. None of the characters are ever the best, but typically Jessie is more likable than the others, yet here she’s also bad. And Ravi is usually the most likable of the kids with his problem being the mocking he gets.

But here…he’s the worst! He goes along with all this crap and rats the kids out to Jessie and is okay with her being tortured, yet he still scolds them. Dumbass, you helped them torture someone!

Then there’s the end. After preachy to everyone about how this is tearing them apart…it turns out he was lying and cut a fake wrist band and he goes to the thing behind their back. First off, I guess he forgot they might watch the concert and see him. I bet their next meeting will go really well!

Ravi isn’t always the nicest person but he would never stoop himself to doing this. Not to mention this completely throws away the moral. They have a nice moment but ruin it with a mean spirited and crappy ending!

Instead of being a story with a moral, it’s just a bunch of unlikable jerks being terrible to each other for 22 minutes. You know you screwed up when Luke is the most likable kid.

So yeah, this episode is bad. It takes a plot that’s already hard to do and screws it up. The characters act terribly and not even the nice one or the hot one is likable. It’s just mean spirited and stupid. Like I said, this is an issue these shows have but this episode has it worst.

I swear, there are good and even sweet episodes of this show. I know I said I would get into at another point, but now I will say watch an episode like Gotcha Day and you’ll see what I mean. Hell, even this Season had the Wedding Arc and the one where Luke tries to find out about his birth mother.

And this current Season is seeing minor improvement as Zuri has had more nice moments, and there was an episode with Mr Mosbey in it. Not the actor, the …actual character.

Yeah.

Watch those episodes if you can tolerate this stuff, or just watch 16 Wishes or Debby’s Girl Meet World Episode if you want her being hot AND funny. Avoid this crappy episode.

Grade: D-

Oh wait, I forgot to mention the director. I brought it up earlier so I should bring it up now. So, who is this director? Hmm, I’m sure it’s nobody I care about.

mlp_season_3_scorecard_by_spongey444-d8mcdq2

I’m going to bed.

See ya.

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Dog With a Blog-Love Ty-angle

Hello, Spongey here.

We’re continuing my TV crusade, and we’ve got another interesting one. It’s…another episode from Dog with a Blog. Yep, we’re visiting Stan for a 3rd time. I wouldn’t do this if these episodes didn’t mostly deserve it.

Though to be honest, I shouldn’t have done Stan Stops Talking. Should have saved it for another time, that will be revealed in due time.

I certainly didn’t expect to talk about this show more than once, but then again, it is a show full of surprises. It has the dumbest title and concept ever, yet it had a few episodes that are kind of complex and emotional.

Yeah, if you didn’t read the Stan Stops Talking review …that seriously happened.

This Disney Sitcom is still stupid, as per usual, but it really is more than meets the eye. But of course, we’re not here to praise it. See, you may remember my review of the episode Freaky Fido. It was…mediocre to say the least, with mean humor and a bad moral.

I’ve found another…not so good episode. Yeah, usually I won’t go after 2 bad episodes of a show if I’ve done the example episode, but I really wanted to get into this one. It fails in a very different way than that one, and it really deserved a review.

Here’s the main reason. Typically is a bad episode has two plots, one of them will be decent. Review It Up is a good example and some of other targets do this as well. But today’s target….is not an example.

Both plots kind of suck and that’s why I’m reviewing this one. If just one of these weak plots existed, I could let it slide but with two bad plots, it needed a review. Not to mention that one plot is…incredibly baffling, even more so than Freaky Fido.

Before we began, I need to set the stage a bit. This episode is part of a story arc, and it’s actually part 1 of the conclusion. You might recall from my Freaky Fido review how I talked about Nikki. She was some girl like Tyler liked and while she was fine with him at the end of he debut, she randomly hated him in Freaky Fido for some reason.

And that’s part of the problem with this episode, or at least it’s follow up. Later on, Tyler started dating a girl name Emily, who is quite a bit like him being a skater girl who he shares more in common with then Nikki.

I quite liked them as a couple, more so than Nikki. But of course, her presence means we needed a love triangle plot. But hey, that’s fine. As annoying as those plots can be, maybe they can can pull it off well.

Or maybe they can create a perfect example of how not to do this storyline. …Let’s just get into it.

This, is Love Ty-Angle

Writer: Micheal B Kaplan

He’s one of the creators of the show. Make that of what you will.

The episode starts in the kitchen as Ellen (the Mom) presents a Cat to Bennet, the Dad. She’s cat sitting for a friend and since they have a dog, I’m sure this will turn our well. Avery comes in and points this out, but Mom says there is nothing to worry about.

By the way, this is the subplot. Yeah, I guess the main plot was a tad too heavy to open the episode on.

Avery points out the last time Stan met a cat, and after a Family Guy cutaway, they all get worried and decide that Stan can’t know about the cat. After the intro , we see Tyler and Emily hanging out and being pretty pleasant.

Naturally, Nikki comes in at this moment to drop something off, and intrude on their fun. Of course, she acts nonchalant but it’s obvious she disapproves of this girl. Yes, most of the episode is made up of it, like in most Love Triangle plots.

I’m just questioning how she suddenly likes him again. Avery notices this and takes her aside.

“I think I like Tyler”

“But Tyler’s been chasing you for years, and you were never interested…”

Her excuse is that now she Tyler isn’t chasing after her, she sees how “Great” he is. Here’s a line from Freaky Fido:

“That will change when you see me roll over and play dead”

“That might help”

I’m not buying this.

They just kind of drop this for some dumb Chloe joke, and we cut back to Tyler and Emily as Emily is catchy on to Nikki’s jealously. Tyler assures her that she has nothing to worry about, as Nikki was just the chick he went after dozens of times. That…doesn’t help.

“I don’t want you hanging out with Nikki anymore”

That’s …unreasonable for a mostly stable and okay character. Oh, but we’re talk about her at the end.

Not wanting to ruin their relationship, Tyler goes along with this. He talks about this with Avery and Stan and Avery says Tyler has to man up and gtell Nikki they can’t be friend. Guess how well that goes.

Now back to the subplot. Stan suspects something is off, and he sneaks around until he eventually catches the family petting the cat. He trips and he is caught…and then it just cuts to later without showing how they reacted to that. Whatever.

Speaking of reactions, Stan’s reaction to a cat being in the house is not exactly the best. Avery points out that this cat has done nothing, but Stan says that it’s just natural for Cats and Dogs to hate each other.

“It’s like the Red Rox and the Yankees!”

Heh.
So yeah, this plot deals with Stan’s…cat racism.

We’ll…get into that mess later. For now, Stan tries to get the Cat out but, say it with me now, the cat came back. He even wakes to see that he slept with the cat.

…Not like that.

“How can something so wrong feel so right?’

…Not helping.

Anyway, Tyler tells Nikki the news and while she takes it well, she tries to get him to dump Emily and maybe go out with her. It takes him awhile to catch on to her hint (He’s…the dumb one) and when he does, we get a quirky “cut to commercial” sting.

After the break, Stan freaks out about the fact that he might like a cat. He tells Avery about this just as Tyler breaks his news. It’s awkward for everyone. Stan is sort of pushed aside so Tyler can debate on who he wants to be with.

Oh yep, we’re doing that and …well I have words about how it ends. Tyler lists out the pros and cons of each

PROS: Things are great with Emily, Nikki’s the one he’s always wanted, Nikki is Nikki.

CONS: Nikki was never interested and maybe she’s just after him cuz hes is unavailable

Hmm…Interesting points. Keep all of this in mind, because it’ll be very important later.

He goes to Bennet and Ellen for help and of course they are of no help. Ellen is especially…um weird. After this semi Montage, Tyler calls a meeting to announce his choice. Well, that was fast.

Actually, he doesn’t say it not cuz he plans to tell the girl first. So he heads down to the park and picks…EMILY!

“I choose you”

…Insert obvious joke here.

But yeah, good choice! This episode is gonna end on a …yeah, something stupid happens.

‘You’re such a jerk”

Hmm?
“I can’t believe you were thinking about dumping me”

…But in the end he didn’t. That’s all that matters.”

“But I choose you”

Exactly.

“I thought everything was going so great between us”

“It was, that’s why I choose you. Nikki’s a dream girl, I don’t know if I can even trust her. What we have is real, it’s safe and comfortable”

…Go on.

“I don’t wanna be with someone who doesn’t think I’m his dream girl”

“Your being really cool about this-“

She threw a rose at you.

“That’s because I’m cool”

Then she leaves…never to be heard from again, in this episode or the series…as of this writing.

….I’m gonna be tone it done here because my full rant comes in after the next couple scenes. …But yeah, this is…um…let’s talk about it.

Words cannot describe how contrived this is. Now, I will be fair for a moment. Usually, I would actually praise a scene like this. This kind of situation typically ends with the girl going “yay” and crap like that. But instead they try something…realistic, for lack of a better word.

After all, in real life this pretty much means the boy isn’t really thinking about either girl really wants, and they are just prizes to be won. Emily kind of has a point….but it doesn’t work. Because the way it’s worded makes it painfully obvious the writers just didn’t want Tyler with Emily.

Oh, we’ll get into that in a sec though. Like I said, the full rant comes in a bit. And we’re not even done with either plot yet, so let’s go on the scene in the B plot where the …seams starts to show.

Since Stan is a cat lover now, he invites all the neighborhood cats over. Don’t ask he got them there, but instead ask how no one else noticed their cats leaving. Anyway, the cats are driving him crazy.

“Their entitled and think their better than everyone. It’s like living with a bunch of sorority girls”
Haw.

Chloe sees all this and makes a comment.

“Today in school we learned that you have to judge people by who they are. Not by the color of their skin, or what country they come from”

…And they just dropped the bomb. Remember how in Wizards only Fools, I said I would looking too deeply if it wasn’t’ for that one line reference religion? This is the same thing. They pretty much compared Stan’s situation to racism, meaning this is what they were going for.

And how does Stan respond?

“You mean I can like one cat as an individual but I don’t have to like all cats as a group?’


I’m just going let that line sink in for you, and remind you that someone got paid to write that.

After a joke, we move onto the main plot, as Tyler decides that Nikki is his back up. Nikki doesn’t seem to have an issue with Tyler choosing her…but he she does an issue with her being the back up.

“You’re such a jerk”

Okay, this makes sense. I’m fine with this. I even like how this is kind of a downer ending….which has a happy ending in the next episode, but I’ll get to that. So yeah, Nikki leaves and now Tyler has no one.

“What do I do about Nikki?”

“Nikki’s the one you want”

…You picked Emily first but you actually want Nikki? Then why was she the backup?

“It’s always been Nikki”

That’s not quite the end of the plot yet. The final scene has Tyler going home and having this exchange with Dad:

“Hey, one piece of advice I forgot to give you yesterday. Make sure the girl you pick never knows that there was ever a doubt”

“Thanks, and watch out for that mailbox that hit you last week”

“It’s a little too late to be telling me that now”

“Exactly!”

I share that cuz it was actually pretty funny.

Okay A plot over, RANT TIME.

There are a number of problems with this ending overall, especially now that you know that Nikki is the one he (spoilers) ends up with and wants. Let’s think about it for a moment. Tyler has a lot in common with Emily and has some decent chemistry with her.

When it comes to Nikki, they have very little in common and like Tyler said, Nikki didn’t really seem to care about him until he was taken.

And he ends up with Nikki, and he claims it was always her even though he really has no reason to like her outside of her…being Nikki. The episode itself lists reason why Emily was better…and yet they still go with Nikki.

And the entire last in contrived to make it so he ends up going for Nikki. …YOU DON’T DO THAT. When writing a plot like this, you don’t just put him with someone he obviously has little in common with. And you especially don’t make the big scene contrived to make this happen.

The next episode basically wraps up this story by having Tyler make up with Nikki and the whole thing goes into how special they were…even though they only had like one episode with them acting okay to each other, ontop of all the other stuff I brought up.

Yeah, he has a girl he obviously has more in common with yet they latterly make up crap just to put him with the person the writers want him to be with, making the other girls existence pointless!

…Oh god, it hit me. This is…bad fanfiction. Yes, really. This is exactly the kind of crap you see in bad shipping fanfiction. And it’s in an actual TV show written by real writers who should know better!

…Yeah I don’t like this plot very much. But enough of THAT rant, how does the B plot, and the episode as a whole, end?

Ellen’s friend comes to pick up the cat and Stan is sad to see her go. He says goodbye in a a cheesy fasion and..the cat attacks him.

“Yeah, I hate cats”

The end.

Okay you know what? I’ll save the rant for the end, cuz it’s a doozy!

Final Thoughts:

There’s so much wrong with this episode that it’s insane. As a viewing experience, it’s not too bad. It’s typical Dog with a blog stupidity that I can enjoy with a few good jokes here and there. But both plots have baffling endings that make this episode really…not good.

The main plot makes all the mistakes Love triangle plots tend to make, and the ending feels like bad fanction. It throws away logic just to put Tyler with the girl the writers want him to be with. I know I can’t expect great writing from a Disney Sitcom but writing this bad is never excusable.

Oh, and guess what? After this arc, Tyler and Nikki only appears together a couple of times…and in a recent episode they break up off screen.
Yes, so this entire crappy plot was POINTLESS!

I would calm down but now we have the B plot…which is even worse. It has a great set up, with Stan learning …not to be Racist, essentially. They even compare it to racism and put in that dumb line. But then they have all the cats, including Whiskers act like assholes, and it ends with Stan hating cats again.

In other words, the episode pretty much says Stan is racist…and lets him stay racist. …Those are some REAAAALY unfortunate implications. Actually, it’s not because they STATE that it’s like judging people based on skin color.

So yeah, the episode lets our main character be racist. I’m not saying it’s sending a bad moral, it’s just a horrific lack of oversight. But at least with the main plot, I can see how they thought that this worked. Here, I can’t see they thought that ending was a good idea. Dog with a blog isn’t exactly a learning show but if you’re gonna bring this subject up, you can’t do it this badly.

That’s all I got. We have a plot that feels like fanfiction, and a plot that has bad implications. Both plots had good intentions but got very muddled in the excection. It’s just as bad as Freaky Fido, just for having two plots with bad ending.

It’s weird that I got…pretty angry while writing this even though this one of the tamer things we are tackling. I don’t hate the writers or anything, they just…made a mistake to say the least.

…This episode sucks, good night.

Grade: D-

What’s next for our TV quest? …Well, I can’t think of a good hint so…it’s Jessie. …This is going to be fun.

See ya.

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Clockstoppers

 What if you had all the time in the world? ...Wait wrong pandering kids movie.


What if you had all the time in the world? …Wait wrong pandering kids movie.

Hello, Spongey here.

I’m…not sure how to introduce this one. It doesn’t have any huge stigma around it, or anything that I can use as a segue way. Honestly, I just went onto Netflix and picked a movie that looked interesting.

So let’s talk about that. This is one of those movies that people kind of remember…but kind of don’t. It’s always talked about as a forgotten nostalgia film…but that’s it. No one really knows if it holds up or not. I’ve heard about quite a bit but I know very little about it.
And that’s pretty much why it here.

This film comes to us from Nickelodeon Movies. Now that’s interesting. This must be one of their early 2000’s films that no one really cares about, like Snow Day, which I’ll have to get to at some point. Hopefully this will be an improved from our rather mixed previous encounter with them.

As far as the creative team, I have good news and bad news. See, we have 3 writers. Two have The Rugrats Movie…but also The Smurfs. And the other has Friday the 13th Part 8.

So this could be the worst ever, or the best thing ever. …But the director did Thunderbirds, so it’s all up in the air. Let us take a look at Nostalgia film and see if it deserves to be remembered. Insert time pun here.

This, is Clockstoppers

The movie opens at an Airport as a creepy dude with a beard is walking around, acting suspicious….That sounds more disturbing when I put it like that. He is about to board a plan when a force suddenly sucks him into a van.

Okay I’m not getting good vibes so far.

As it turns out, this guy is a scientist trying to run away from the people in this van. He is played by French Stewart, in yet another role he probably regrets.

We then cut to our main character Zac, whose first scene pretty much confirms that was made in the early 2000’s. Especially the background song and his computer. He visits his Dad at work, as he is a teacher. He’s also a scientist guy and he’s working on a project made by French Stewart here.

He meets with his friend as they exchange dialogue no kid has ever said. He catches a glimpses of a new girl who he gets a crush on. The clichés are piling up. The actress of this girl is 41 now, and this movie came out in 2002 which means…yeah a bit too old to be playing a high schooler. Though to be fair, Zac’s actor was over 20 when he did this, so that’s not too shocking.

Also, she happens to be a repeat actor, being Maria in those Harold and Kumar sequels I covered. …She’s grown.

Anyway, he tries to hit on her and he fails. She’s pretty awesome in how she shoots him down but they are gonna end up together in the end, no matter how implausible it is.

He goes home to his Mom as he takes a big ol’ sip of product placement. Of course he has a sister who he bickers with. This is gonna have a ton of clichés, isn’t it? When Dad gets home, he begs him to get him a car. …Yep, it is.

Speaking of clichés, if you guessed that Dad does a bit too much work for Zac’s, than yay, you’ve seen another movie before!

We cut to night as we see two guys in suits talking about something mysterious. Yep, they’re evil in some way. They are talking about some device that may cause some trouble.

These guys work for QT and one guys goes down into the lab where they have captured Dr Doppler. He’s in “hyper time” and while he’s been in there a week, it looks like he’s aged 20 years.

They talk just vague enough for us to not know 100 percent of what is going on here. These bad guys want him to help perfect a little project of his and he is having Zac’s Daddy help out with it.

But he sent him too much so…

“You IDIOT!”

They don’t take it well. Also, of course some smart guy does something stupid so our teenage can eventually got a hold of top secret technology. We cut to Zac and his friend at school as they are bothered by incredibly transparent/annoying bullies. Said bullies try to hit on the badass hot new girl which goes as well as you would expect.

When they are taken care of, Zac swoops in and eventually gets her to give him a second chance. But the joke is on him as he has to help her with her plans, which include raking leaves.

Yeah be sassy and cool all you want, you’re still gonna end up with him or need to be saved in the end.

They hit it off while they are doing their work and while she’s doing something, Zac puts on a watch he found at home, and of course it’s the project the scientists have been working on.

As you might guess, the device freezes time and it causes a bit trouble as it unfreezes at odd times. A not so dead rat thing is involved. The girl is pissed before but time freezes just as she lashes out. When Zac is done being pervy, time unfreezes and he is kicked out.

But just then he freezes time just as she touches her, which makes her join in on the freezing fun. I like that it doesn’t take them long to figure out what is going on, instead of being all dumb and oblivious about it for half an hour.

“I don’t think time has stopped, we’re just moving really fast”

Well if you wanna all scientific about it.

“For this to work, we have to touch each other”

“Sooner or later, all guys say that”

…Okay.

“With such awesome power comes awesome responsibility…at least that’s what my Dad would say”

I’ve made the joke too much already.

So we get a montage (set to an early 2000’s pop tune, of course) of them using their powers to have fun and get revenge. Also, they mention Star Trek cuz Jonathan Frakes made this, hardy har har.

They go to weird club place where the black friend in this turn table…scratching…this competition and they use their freeze powers to help him stop sucking. After helping him out, they tell him about the whole Hypertime thing. He’s very excited about the idea of the watch.

“Let’s dress Coach Wells up like Britney Spears”

Did I mention this movie was made in 2002?

After he overacts his hearts out, they drop him off at home and they head to the girl’s house where Zac gets a kiss from his girl. Of course this happens after one day.

Zac heads home where he finds some people searching the place. He tries to escape but he is taken into a van. Not again..,

As it turns out, this is the same Van holding French Stewart.

“They wanna kill you, man”

With his help, Zac gets the Van started and they escape. Yet again our baddies are terrible at their job. We get a big epic car chase that ends with the van falling into a river, as the watch gets wet while on Zac’s wrist.

He is knocked out and he wakes up in the hospital. Wah wah.

His family (minus Dad) are there and apparently they think he jacked the van. Naturally they don’t believe him when he tries to tell them the truth, so he dries out the watch to freeze time again.

He uses this to escape and now it looks like our hero is on the run, if anyone cares at this point. After running around for a bit, he find’s Francesca and tells her what is going on.

She lets him borrow her car but then she decides to hop in him with him and join him on his epic quest. Meanwhile, Zac’s Mom tells Dad about the crazy stuff going on and when she mentions the watch, Dad gets worried. The bad guys show up at his door right after that and when Zac shows up, Dad is nowhere to be found.

To make things worse, the TV Happens to be on Plot Convenience News and it looks like everyone is on the hunt for French Stewart and Zac.

Speaking of which, French Stewart shows up to ask for the watch and Francesca responds by kicking him in the face. Nice.

“You know what I don’t like? Getting kicked in the head!”

Zac complies but he gets mad when he saw that he got it wet, even then he saw him get it wet earlier. Also, why is he acting like a bad guy when he was pretty nice earlier?

Anyway, they talk for a bit and Stewart explain the whole deal with Dad and how he didn’t mean for things to get all messed up like this. So French Stewart decides to help them save Zac’s Dad but first they must fix the watch.

After a montage, they fix it and prepare to sneak into Bad Guy HQ. But of course, French Stewart pulls the “this is as far as I go” thing once they start going in through the ventilation. Zac calls him out on this and they move on, only for the alarm to catch them in Hypertime. Yeah they froze time to get past this fan thing.

Bad guys chase after then and of course this leads to one of them getting hit in the balls. Lovely. Also, the part where Zac busts through glass while in Hyper Time is awesome.

Despite their best efforts, they are captured and taken to where Dad is. Some dudes show up at the bad guy’s door, so they decided to get a head start on their plan and activate hyper time. They try to start up this Accelerator thing but Dad changed the access codes on them.

He says he’ll give them the ride codes if Zac and Francesca are let go. Zac uses a screwdriver thing to hold the doors to their containment thing shut, and he gets out his watch to accelerate further. In short, this causes him to look weird and go right through everything.

It also turns him into the Flash.

He tries to escape with his Flash powers, but the bad guys use this weird gun thing to take off God Mode. Thankfully, Michael Bay steeped in the director’s chair and there is a huge explosion to knock out the bad guys.

As I side note, I’m 100 percent sure all this science is bullshit, and there are a lot of questions I can ask, but I don’t care.

The main Bad guy (who is so important I forgot his name) chases after them but French Stewart shows up to save them.

“Good night, little man”

That was cool…but it also our villain defeat. I’ve seen lamer in my line of Not Work but still, that’s lame. With that, some NSA guys show up and arrest our baddies.

“So what do you have in mind for our next date?”

Oh yeah, there was an underdeveloped Romance, I forgot…

While stuff like that is happening, French Stewart asks Dad if he has been working on a machine to reverse those again effects. Yeah, remember, French Stewart become super old earlier. I forgot cuz they kind of forgot until now.

Anyway, Dad hasn’t even tested the Anti-Aging machine yet so Stewart decided to do that, but of course we cut to something less interesting as he does this. Zac, Francesca, and Dad arrive home to the family and everyone is happy.

But as it turns out, French Stewart had a mishap with the machine and now he’s a old man in a teenager’s body. Oh how silly! This all be explored in Clockstoppers 2: No time for this shit.

With that, the kids hop in Zac’s new car but as it turns out, the police never called off that little hunt they started earlier. Thus, a police car starts chasing them but as it also turns out, Zac never turned in the watch so he turns on hyper time. Roll credits.

…There’s a few things wrong with this. 1st off, the whole police hunt thing was pretty pointless in the end. 2nd, they never called off the investigation even after all this crap happened? And third, the fact that Zac took the watch back pretty much shows he learned nothing about messing with time. Yay!

That aside, it’s close to avoiding the abrupt ending problem but the Anti-Climax sort of ruined it. Whatever, we’re done here.


Final Thoughts:

For better or worse, this is exactly what I expected when I heard this was a Nick movie made in 2002. And it’s…well it’s safe to it’s not good, but I kind of enjoyed it. I mean it uses almost every early 2000’s kid’s movie cliché in the movie. How could I not love mocking it?

Of course that is part of the problem. Every about it feels calculated to show off what kids were into at the time. The plot hits every expected beat and it has lots of pandering and product placement. Not to mention the character archetypes such as the annoying black friend.

But for what it is, it’s pretty harmless. The fact that no one remembers this movie shows how much it really matters in the end. Before I move on, let’s go over the things that actually bug me.

The black friend is annoying. Besides that, the romance is forced and some plot points are wasted. The whole thing with Dad they started isn’t really resolved and the more “emotional” parts kind of feel shoehorned in. They don’t exactly fail but they don’t exactly work either.

I feel that they kind of done a lot more with this concept other than the usual stuff you expect. Of course it can’t all be wacky stuff, since you do need a plot, but there should have been a better balance.

And of course, the ending is fairly problematic.

All that aside, this movie is a lot of fun to riff on. It’s just so Early 2000’s that it’s hilarious. Zac is so hopelessly extreme and there’s so much pandering and so many clichés. If either grew up with these types of movies, or love to mock them, then you’ll have fun with this.
If not…well you’re gonna hate it.

I can’t really say a lot about the story and characters since there isn’t a lot to say. The story is pretty straight forward and predictable, and there are confusing or underused plot points. Nothing too far away from what I expected.

The characters are pretty basic. Zac is your typical Teenage Hero who tries too hard to be releatable to the kids, but to be fair, he’s not…hateable or anything like that. The love interest is fairly badass but she end up being a typical love interest. But at least she’s kind of cool.

Everyone is else just kind of there. The bad guy is boring and Dad is just…the Dad who is there to get our hero to find the watch in the first place. French Stewart’s character is probably the best since he has a few neat things going on, and honest, French Stewart was pretty good. Unlike the other stuff we’ve seen in him, it looks like he’s actually trying and he has some funny lines.

Hey, it’s better than the last time we saw him meeting a time freezing device.

Speaking acting, it’s about as good as you can expect with this script. Everyone does fine but no one is really exceptional. But still, not bad. The strong point of film does come from all the tech stuff.

They do a decent job exploring the capabilities of the Watch when they actually have fun with it. The effects are also pretty good, if a bit unspectacular. It’s cool to see how things work, and there are a few promising plot points and good performances.

Overall, this movie is…okay. On a Critical level it is kind of meh due to how predictable it is, and how it uses tired clichés and panders to its audience. But on a personal level it’s pretty enjoyable due to just how Early 2000’s it is.

And like I said, it’s harmless. Far from the worst Nick movie ever, but far from the best. Since I did enjoy it in a way, I’ll go easy with the rating. I only recommend to people who tend to enjoy this kind of thing. Everyone else need not apply.

Grade: B-

And look on the bright side: No crappy time puns!

Next time, we have more Tech gone amuck, but instead of a big screen Nick production, it’s on a smaller screen, on one of its competitors.

See ya.

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A look at the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Phase 2)

Hello, Spongey here.

Way back in May of 2012, I did a Retrospective on The Marvel Cinematic Universe, in anticipation of the Avengers movie. I thought it would be a neat idea, and I thought it was a decent post. I’m not sure why I seemed to put all in my effort in the Captain America section, but other than that I like it.

My feelings on those films have not changed, aside from a few minor things. It was a lot of fun to review those movies, mostly because I actually had not seen some of them at that point. At the end, I said I would do a general review of The Avengers.

Yeah, some things never change with me.

I planned on doing it but I just forget about it. That film has come and gone, making its mark on the film industry. Do I plan on tackling it someday? Sure, but not now. Considering what this post is, you think I would do a big review of that before jumping in, but I’m just not up to it.

Eventually, I will in some way but I got other things to do. There are other reviews of it you can check out, and while I wish to do a fair and complex analysis someday, today is not that day.

All you need to know right now is that I feel it is a film that succeeds at what it wants to be a: A Superhero epic with various likable characters fighting evil. It just needed to have decent enough characters and good action to be solid and it works very well, and the story even works fine.

But again, another time.

Instead, I wish to do a follow up to my retrospective. We have a sequel to the Avengers coming up, that I’m hugely hyped for. I’ll explain more of why when I tackle that one. I hope to cover that one and the first one in a Retrospective post sometime next year, or at least when it hits DVD.

Because of that movie coming out, I decided to discuss the 2nd phase of Marvel films that were released between 2013 and now. Because hey, why not? I got stuff to say about these movies so let’s do this.

I could go on about how I feel about the MCU and how I feel their strategy with these works well, but I can dig into that when I cover The Avengers. I’m just here to review the actual movies themselves.

So strap in and let’s see how Phase 2 works out.

This, is A look at the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Phase 2)

WARNING: THIS CONTAINS HEAVY SPOILERS FOR ALL OF THESE MOVIES. IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN THEM, SKIP THAT SECTION IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS FOR MOVIES EVERYONE WHO CARES HAS ALREADY SEEN

Let’s kick things off with a movie …I already reviewed.

IRON MAN 3 (2013):

This is embarrassing. When this came out, I did a general review of it. In this situation, I’d just review it again or go my in depth than I did before. But honestly…I can’t in this case. Mostly because my feelings haven’t really changed in any big way that would require me to give more analysis.

Some things have changed but in the sense that I like the movie even more even though I’ve heard more of the flaws. Reading my review again, it’s actually pretty accurate to how I feel now for the most part. So there won’t be a review in this section, but more of an Aftermath report. This one has been out for a while now and its legacy has been interesting.

When it came out, the reaction was mixed to positive. All the positive feels can be found with the Critics, while the negativity can be found with the fans, which is the opposite of how this usually goes down.

I figured the initial shock over the twist would go down, and people embrace this is a great film. That’s not what happened. It’s gone down but it’s accepted as an okay film and all the praise has been passed over to two films coming up.

Now, If people don’t like it, that’s fine, I can handle other opinion. But it baffles me that more people don’t like it, because on many critical levels, it is just as amazing as Winter Solider and GOTG. It’s a tiny bit better in some areas, actually.

And it’s for the same reasons Iron Man 1 is the critic best of Phase 1. People seem to like that one the most, as well as First Avenger, so why doesn’t this one get the same treatment?

I could blame the Mandarin Twist…so I will. Get over it, it’s been well over a year, and they’ve come out and explained why they had to do what they did. I get why it was a big deal, but quite frankly isn’t not a deal anymore.

Every other complaint I’ve heard about the movie just feels like nitpicking. They are issues I can point out in Iron Man 1 but no one brings those up because they see they are not big deals.

You can find many videos or articles defending these nitpicks, so I won’t bore you with the details.

It’s just odd that this films legacy isn’t the best, since I honestly think it has everything that made Iron Man popular/great. After watching it again, I actually like it even more, even though I do see more of the minor issues here and there. But again, they don’t matter so let’s focus on the positives.

This chapter has everything that made the original film great, and the 2nd one tolerable, without a lot of the baggage they could have at times. While I like the first one more for the pacing, this one felt like a true sequel. The 2nd one tried to do a lot of what this one did, but it ended up being kind of messy in a lot of areas, but still very enjoyable for me.

This one on the other hand, gets everything right. It’s very funny with Tony being snarky, but it blends well with the drama and every little side thing goes somewhere, even the part with the kid. Good job on getting a likable child character, by the way.

It’s got all the stuff you need for an actual movie, with complex character development, but it also all the stuff you need for an awesome marvel film, with witty dialogue and great action scenes. The Iron Man films don’t really excel at action but this one offers some cool stuff, like the Plane scene and the climax.

It may undercooked in some minor areas, but it’s a pretty great film that I still enjoy a lot. My thoughts have not changed vastly, so I see no reason to review it again.

Don’t worry, the other sections will be actual reviews. Overall, this is one of the more unfairly bashed films of its year and while you can dislike it all you want, it should be seen as a great film by more people.

I leave you with lazy copy/past from my review:

“It’s not just a “Dumb fun” popcorn film. It’s dark, smart, and complex. Like most Marvel films, actually. But most of all: It’s like the first Iron man. AND on top of that,. It takes place at Christmas time!

So it’s now one of the best Christmas films of all time, just like Gremlins and Die hard! But even taking away that, it’s a very good film. I’m sure fanboys will bitch about it, but I am not a fanboy, so I really liked it. Easily the best film of the year so far.”

If only past me knew Frozen and The World’s End would end up fighting for that position.

Grade: A-

Let’s move on to something that gives me more to talk about:

THOR: THE DARK WORLD (2013):

If you recall, I said Thor was my least favorite of the Phase 1 Original movies. It was still a good, with a solid lead and great action, but it was a bit dumb in some areas and it wasn’t the best script in the world, sadly.

It was still very popular, so here we are with the sequel. I was excited for it, since I figured they make it better, like with Iron Man 3. However, the reaction has been very mixed.

Some people liked it fine, even more so than than first. Some really didn’t like, and some liked it less. Giving the reaction and my thoughts on the first film, I figured I’d like it anyway, despite some of the hate.

And how do I feel about it? Well, I thought it was pretty enjoyable. It’s on the same level as the first film: Flawed but still a satisfying and fun time at the movies. It had plenty of minor issues,. But in the end I was able to forgive those and have fun with the film.

I suppose I should start with comparing the two movies before we discuss the pros and cons of it on its own. As a sequel, it does what it needs to do. It escalates everything, and brings our character into new and interesting positions that push them. One of the big hurdles of the first film, bringing this mystical character to the Marvel World, is absent here for obvious reasons.

However, there are some ways it fumbles. By that I mean there isn’t a lot of character development…sort of I’ll talk about the characters in a bit, but they don’t go through huge character arcs or anything. Thor has some stuff with Loki, which is the highlight of the movie, but they mostly stay static compared to other Marvel films with meatier character growth.

It’s not a huge problem but it makes the film a bit more light than the other ones. This is why people call this the “filler” episode of the Marvel films, at least of the ones not meant to set up another franchise. It adds a tiny bit with Loki but it’s skippiable if you don’t care. It doesn’t stop the movie from being fun but it stops it from being a bit more interesting.

Despite them, some characters and aspects are rightfully improved. It just simply doesn’t create a more complex story, it just makes things better. But like I said, the film makes up for it with the good parts.

Speaking of the story, let’s talk about it. Here’s how I understand it: Some elves want this thingy so they can mess with the worlds for some reason, and Natile Portman gets it and they want here, and then a bunch of stuff happens, the end.

…Or something like that. Yeah, one of the film’s problem is that it doesn’t exactly have much of a story. There’s some decent character based stuff but the actual story is not very impressive. It’s just villains wanting something and causing trouble, that’s really it. It’s somewhat convoluted, and doesn’t explore any huge themes or whatever.

I’m cool with a simple story but perhaps more meat was needed and they could have done a better job explaining some plot elements. As it is, most of it’s an excuse plot. An excuse to have Jane be more involved, an excuse to have Thor and Loki team up, and of course, an excuse to have tons of action scenes.

All of those things are nice, so I can forgive it, but it doesn’t exactly make for a hugely enriching film experience. The other Marvel films had meatier stories, even the weaker ones. This one by comparison is emptier. However, I always forgive stuff like that if they still give us cool things, and we got a lot of cool things in this film.

First off, it looks amazing. The highlight of the first movie was Asgard, as the effect team did an awesome job at bringing the world to life. It looked like a fully realized world and none of it looked cheap or fake. The actual effects on stuff like the weird robot monster…thing at the end are also excellent.

They kick it up a notch here, since most of the movie is set in Asgard, so we see a lot fancy effects. Plus, we have the titular Dark World, and tons of other neat stuff. No one can deny that this is one of the best looking Marvel films to date.

And of course, this means good action scenes. Despite the Thor films having weaker scripts, they have some of the most fun action scenes in any Marvel movie. There’s so much to like in them, from Thor’s awesome introduction, to the highly creative climax where Thor and the big Bad are jumping dimensions.

All of the Marvel films have at least one action scene that makes really giddy inside, and this had quite a few. So even if the story has flaws, at least it has good action and pretty visuals.

We get to see more of Asgard in this one, and that’s a good thing, as it makes the film more consistent in its enjoyment levels. There’s far less dumb fish out of water humor and it’s mostly focus on “serious” and fun stuff in Asgard.

The humor in the Thor films isn’t as strong as the other Marvel films but there’s some nice moments, and here most of them comes from Thor and Loki. The tone is a lot better here and that’s a welcome change. It’s not exactly “Dark” but it is more serious.

Speaking of which, yes, the “Dark world” isn’t very dark at all and it’s barely in the movie. Moving on!

Taking place in Asgard means that Jane gets a bigger role where she is transported there due to being head starting the plot with some MacGuffin the villain wants. Her bigger role is pretty well done as this weird plot device inside her causes some problems, as well as the fact Thor has been gone for 2 years. He’s forgiven pretty quickly due to the whole…New York thing.

Her character isn’t the most interesting on her own, but she gets a nice role and a few badass moments to make up for it. Their romance is handled slightly better here, and Natile Portman does a good job as usual to boot.

Before we move on, I’ll just address the other big problem the movie has, and it’s one everyone agrees with: The villain is lame. Here’s some dark elf guy who is evil…because reasons. There’s nothing to him at all, and usually I can forgive that but he’s so boring on top of that. In every scene he has this dull look on his face and no point does he seem to be having any fun.

I’m not going to blame the actor, Christopher Ecclston, since he does fine but I blame the director for telling him that this was the performance they needed, and the writers for writing him this way. He isn’t the worst villain ever, and he is involved with the awesome climax, but he is easily the weakest Marvel villain to date. Before we move onto the real star of the movie, we got to talk about some other stuff.

There isn’t a ton to say about people like Odin and Thor’s Mom. Odin is cool like always but he isn’t given a ton to do so I can’t say a lot on him as a character. Mom has a slightly bigger role, because she kind of dies.

We aren’t told a lot about her or her relationship with Thor before this happens, but the scene itself is well done, and the final scene with her alive is good for reasons I’ll get into later.

On Earth, we have this scientist guy who was in the first Thor film and the Avengers, which I didn’t remember until I looked it up. That says a lot about him as a character, but he is more memorable here because he’s annoying.

He was touched by Loki’s staff (shut up) in The Avengers so he’s missed up the head now, which leads to him doing stuff like streak at Stonehenge. It’s not funny and he’s a tad pointless here. However, he does lead to the Stan Lee cameo, so I can forgive that.

Speaking of Earthbound characters, we have Darcy, played by Kat Dennings. I didn’t mention her when I talked about the first movie, and that’s because I forgot about her. That’s how little of an impact she made on me. Yet everyone hates on her character, especially in this movie.

I feel the same about her in both movies: She’s got some dumb jokes, but she’s in no way a hindrance. There’s only one line of hers in the first one that I remember, in a good or bad way, and while her role is more “memorable” here it’s not much either. She has a bit of stuff in the first major Earth scene and it’s a bit annoying but forgivable.

Once Jane leaves for Asgard, she pretty much vanishes and only appears in minor bits that only last 30 seconds before we cut back to the plot. It cuts just as most people get angry. And even when she is involved in the climax, she just gets a few lines stuck into the action.

So while she is a minor issue, that’s emphasis on the minor. The lines she gets aren’t that amusing so I can’t blame the actress too much. Plus, that facebook comment from the first one was worse than anything in here.

Also, she’s hot.

Going up the ladder a bit, we have Thor, again played by Chris Hemsworth. I’m not sure if I went into this before, but Chris is one of the more impressive Avengers actors. Mostly because he took a rather simple character and gave him a lot of weight.

When I look at Thor and see him do his thing, I see a godlike man who knows his shit and I’d be willingly to follow him into battle. And that’s all due to the performance, and even the costume a bit.

That aside, Thor hasn’t always been the most interesting character, but he has his moments. In this movie, he’s not that developed as he mostly just does his thing and all his more complex moments deal with other characters.

The biggest examples being him dealing with Mom and Loki. Aside from that, he’s a tiny bit blank but he is likable enough for me to forgive this. He adds to the “lack of depth” issue bit that’s okay.

Then we finally get to the real star of the movie…STAN LEE! He appears making a tiny joke in a scene where that streaking scientist is a in a classroom doing weird stuff. It’s amusing but not one of his better cameos.

Honestly, his Phase 2 cameos aren’t really as memorable as his Phase 1 Cameos, but the one he has in Winter Solider almost makes up for it.
Besides, the best Stan Lee cameo will now forever belong to Big Hero 6.

Okay, enough joking, let’s talk about Loki, played by Tom Hiddelston. Knowing the internet, I was no shocked a pretty boy got a lot of fan girls. But it still astounds how amazingly popular here.

Hell, he was only going to be in Thor 1 until his popularity made them put him in The Avengers. ..Then that was going to be it until he got even more popular. Then he was only going to be in a minor in this one…until they kept having to expand his role.

See what I mean?

It took him awhile to grow on me, but now I really like him. And yeah, he’s the best part of the movie. All of the films cool elements come from him and his story. He’s on trial for his actions in the previous films and he has to deal with how people feel about him, especially…his Mother.

Yeah, when she dies, it’s after he basically told to her screw off. As cliché as it is, it adds a lot of weight to his character and that scene. And of course, when he teams up Thor it gives them both depth as they try to settle their differences.

Yes, Loki is very funny with all snarky moments and stuff like that. That adds to it, and one scene with him turning into people gives us a Captain America cameo!
Loki has a lot of charm and charisma to make him fun enough, but they gave him the most interesting story bits in the whole movie. It’s really interesting to see him with deal him with the aftermath of his actions and go on their journey with Thor.

They get a lot of cool things out of him alone, and that makes him the highlight of the film. The interesting parts with Thor, and the story mostly come from him. Now I’m seeing why he’s so hyped up.

I think I’ve covered everything I feel is important. Don’t expect anything too long with these, since I may not have a ton to say, especially with this one.

Overall, Thor 2 is solid. It’s not Marvel’s best by any means, but it does what it sets out to do pretty well. It may have an empty story, some under developed characters and a weak villain, but it has very good acting, excellent effects/actions scenes and a few very enjoyable characters.

How does it compare to the first? Eh, they are about equal in terms of critical merit. The first may have more character development, but most of its minor issues were fixed. I enjoyed this a little more for the action alone, but they are mostly equal.

It’s safe to say I enjoyed this more than some people, but I will admit it has plenty of flaws, and it’s one of Marvel’s weaker films. But despite its flaws, I had a lot of fun with it and I’m really looking forward for the 3rd one. I hope that one improves on the flaws of both films and gives us a truly awesome movie.

For now, we have two solid Thor pictures to enjoy. They may not be great but they are both solid fun, with or without Loki.

Grade: B+

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLIDER (2014):

This one is interesting…because I kind of reviewed this one. See, when I saw this in theatres, I wrote a general review for it, going into detail with a spoiler section and all that.

Then the ASCII monster hit.

Don’t worry, I finally got rid of the problem…via a new computer. I just posted a very quick review on Facebook to make up for it. But now I got to review again on the blog on detail.

Since I feel like I reviewed this already, this may not be as enthusiastic as you may expect. Because yes, this movie is awesome.

You gotta love it when everyone agrees a film is good, especially when it’s a superhero movie. Even certain Marvel detractors really enjoyed this one. I already liked the original so I was ready for an even better sequel, and I got it.

You’ve heard all the reasons this film is good before, but I’ll say it all anyway. The main reason this movie works, oddly enough, is the plot. Sure, plenty of Marvel films have had solid plots before, but they usually work due to character development or humor.

Iron Man 3 kind of had this, but this is a Marvel movie that succeeds largely because of the plot itself. Mostly because of what it adds to the Marvel universe and how it turns things on its head.

Basically, the premise is that our heroes find out that Hydra has been infiltrating Shield for years, and our good guy agency has been working for the villains the whole time, even without Nick Fury knowing.

Thus, the movie becomes a sort of Espionage thriller, as our heroes run around trying to figure out what is really going on. From here, we get plenty of twists and action to fill up 2 hours of fun.

While most Marvel films are fun due to the characters and action, this one has the plot give us most of the fun. It’s really interesting and fun to see them having to deal with finding out this shocking secret, as they run around trying to uncover even more secrets.

For a Marvel film, the plot is pretty meaty with quite a bit going on. Like Iron Man 3, it has all that Marvel trademarks but it adds an extra dimension to make it even better. It’s pretty impressive, and all the other great things stem from it.

I’ll likely end up going through all this pretty quickly, cuz I honestly don’t feel like I have a lot to add from others have said. I am enthusiastic enough to go on like usual but don’t expect a ton.

That and the fact I kind of reviewed it in some way prevents me from saying a ton. Anyway, to compliment the story, we the usual excellent action scenes. There isn’t anything too special to comment on with them though.

They are well made and are a lot of fun when they happened, especially the one in the middle of the movie. But what was up with that part where Cap jumped off his bike? He didn’t jump back on it and it just vanished without explanation.

I noticed this in the theater, and that’s when I finally realized I watched too much Cinema Sins.

I got that out of the way so I can move on to more important things, like the plot…again. Besides being interesting by itself, it’s even more interesting for its impact on the Marvel Universe. We’ve known Shield as the good guys for so long that it’s really shocking for this Hydra twist to happen and shake things up.

I’m sure they’ll go into this even further in future films, but it’s still handled very well here. Now, despite the plot having plenty of meat to it, it’s still as simple and easy to get through as most Marvel films. Meaning, like all Marvel films, it proves smart things can be fun too!

Now, I said certain characters were at their most interesting here, so it’s time to discuss them. Yep, we’re going straight to the characters. There really isn’t a lot to say about the plot other than…it’s interesting with a lot to it. Not a whole more to say, honestly.

Before we get to the main ones, we must cover the less important characters. Cobie Smulders returns as Maria Hill, and she’s cool but she doesn’t do a whole lot. Oh, and Abed pops up for like a minute!

…Yeah, joking aside, we have Robert Redford as Alexander Peirce, who is more or less the real villain. Like everything else, he’s mostly interesting due to his place in the overall story. I find the title character more memorable, but he’s still pretty cool when he pops up, mostly due to Robert Redford, of course.

And we can’t forget The Falcon, played by Antony Mackie. If I had to complain about something in this movie, it’s that he doesn’t get a ton to it. Oh, he has enough screen time to make me like him a lot, but I wish he had just a bit more development in some areas.

He makes for a pretty fun ally and I really enjoy his character, but I just hope he gets more to do in the next film. Nonetheless, they did a decent job of showing him and Cap’s friendship, especially with the opening scene.

Then of course we have the titular villain, the Winter Solider. Spoilers, he’s actually Cap’s old friend Bucky. Since I didn’t really pay attention to him much in the first film, and I’m not exactly a comic expect, this reveal was a surprised to me…Well it would be if I didn’t read a post somewhere mention a storyline this adapts. I put two and two together. …Bah.

Either way, they did a pretty good job. Not only is he a very intimating villain, but his tragic backstory and relationship with Cap gives the movie even more depth. As if the story needed more meat.

This gives Cap’s character more weight and overall this was a solid villain.

But now it’s time to talk about the 3 big characters that help make this movie awesome. First up, we have Nick Fury, played by Samuel L Jackson. I said each of these 3 are the most interesting they’ve ever been, and he’s a good example of that.

He serves well as the secretive leader of SHEILD but this time we get to his skills first hand and it’s awesome. On top of that, he has to deal with everything crumbling before him and that leads to him being pretty interesting. I told you this plot brings out the best in these characters…at least from a writing perspective.

Then we have Black Widow, played by Scarlett Johansson. She’s a bit less interesting than some of the other characters, but she’s still pretty awesome. The play up the fact that she works a bit different than Cap, since she’s all about secrets and stuff. She gets less development than the others, but she has some fun and awesome moments. Plus, she’s still hot.

And finally, we good ol’ Steve Rogers/Captain America, played by Chris Evans. He’s always one of the more admirable characters in the MCU and that is displayed excellently here. As you can probably imagine, he’s not happy with all the secrets going around, as that flies in the face of his AMERICA nature.

Thus, this leads to some interesting with his character. Not to mention the Bucky thing, which gives his story even more weight. He’s just so darn likable throughout the movie as he deals with all this. And you can’t forget that scene he has with old Peggy, damn.

It’s rather impressive how the plot leads to everything good in the movie, when usually it’s the characters themselves that do that. It’s not the best plot ever but its fun, intense and keeps you invested. And when it drags a bit, we have some fun characters and action scenes to pick up the slack.

This film really does deserve to be called one of Marvel’s best with an actually interesting plot that gives way to some interesting characters, good action and all of Marvel’s usually good traits. And to think, the directors of this film mostly did TV shows such as Community.

I mean, I dig their work but sitcom directing doesn’t exactly scream big budget blockbuster to me. They did a great job, to say the least.

Sure, like all movies, there are some dumb moments and plot holes, but it makes up for it with all the great stuff that is in it. They did have a trick with this one, as they had to pretty much reinvent the whole franchise since it has to take place outside of the Era of the first film, and very little of the original cast.

They did a very good job at reinventing the franchise, and while it could have come off as generic without the 40’s backdrop, the spy thriller edge makes it unique. I think it’s clear this movie deserves the praise it gets, and while the first film has a special place in my heart, this one outdoes in every way.

Cap is more interesting, the story has more to meat to it, it’s better paced, and the action is more remarkable. It’s pretty great.

So yeah, that’s really all there is to say. It’s a stellar sequel that makes for another fun and well done Marvel flick. I dug it quite a bit and it’s certainly worth checking out.

Hail Hydra.

Grade: A-

And last but not least…

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (2014):

Oh boy, here’s an interesting note to end Phase 2 on. I’m sure you are all aware of the film’s history and how it unexpectedly blew up, even by Marvel standards. But let’s cover it anyway.

This was a largely unknown property compared to the other stuff Marvel has been adapting. The previous Marvel films were a bit of a gamble since characters like Cap or Thor aren’t taken that seriously by Modern Audiences, they had an even harder time with this as it was a very odd concept that was foreign to people.

The quirky humor displayed in the trailers got people excited (especially the fans), but people figured it wouldn’t be Marvel’s biggest hit.

It was a big hit.

Even by Marvel standards, everyone was going crazy over this one, with some people calling it their favorite Marvel film to date. This is a pretty big deal considering that this is an unknown property.

Sure, it is coming from a well-known studio and it would likely make money regardless of quality, but the fact that even some people how are mixed on Marvel films love it, (keyword being some…) is a testament to its power.

I was pretty excited for the concept alone, and I was happy to hear mostly praise for it. I sadly didn’t get a chance to see it in theaters, but I picked up on DVD and I’m here to talk about it?

Do I like it as much as everyone else?

Duh.

Yeah, who am I to disagree with the popular opinion? This film is every bit as awesome as people made it out to be, and while I’m not 100 percent sure if it’s my favorite Marvel film, it sure is up there at least.

It pretty much grabbed me from the opening scene, as a boy in 1988 named Peter Quill watches his mother die of PCD in front of him. …Yeah, that’s one way to open a Superhero blockbuster.

Joking aside, this pretty much got me invested in the character right away. Dead parents in a Comic Book movie are nothing new, but usually Marvel films don’t quite start this way. But I’ll comment on that kind of stuff in a minute.

I suppose I’ll get a few minor things out of the way: The Stan Lee cameo was pretty weak. He didn’t even get a real line, and his “character” is shown as some kind of perv. That’s funny but…weird. I heard that the cameo was supposed to have Stan Lee on display in the Collecter’s museum, as he gives Groot the middle finger.

Disney didn’t like that. Poo on them.

It was cool to see Thanos in this, since most of us didn’t expect him to pop again until Avengers 3. He serves as a nice way to tie this into the MCU, and in general they did a good job at making an out there standalone film that will still do well with people hungry for more MCU stuff. Not to mention that reveal that the mystical items we’ve come to know (such as the Gem in Loki’s Scepter) are the Infinity Gems.

Speaking of MCU staples, we’ve gotta talk about the post credits scene. Most of the Phase 2 Stingers have been cute, but a bit weak as they haven’t really given us any Avengers 2 lead ins. Iron Man 3 had the reveal with Bruce Banner, Thor 2 had a Guardians lead in (which doesn’t count) and a cute bit with Thor and Jane, and Winter Soldier has a nice bit with Bucky that could be a lead in for Cap 3. These were all fun but nothing special. Oh wait, Cap did have an Avengers 2 lead in …MID Credits.

This…isn’t an Avengers 2 lead in, but it’s easily the most interesting post credits scene yet. In short, we come back to the Collector’s place where we meet…Howard the Duck.

I’m not kidding. Seriously, I’m not. Howard the Duck is in this movie. And…it’s amazing. Just this few seconds we see of him represents him way better than…you know what. He’s voiced by Seth Green here, which is perfect casting.

All I can say is…if this leads to a new Howard the Duck film, and it’s a good one…the world will have officially gone insane.

Anyway, let’s get another semi-minor point out of the way before we dive in: The effects and action. As usual, they are excellent, and they did a great job at making this world look real. This had the same production Designer as Thor 2, and it shows. I don’t usual mention those kind of people but in this case, I had to mention it.

The action scenes are as enjoyable as they should be, most notably the final battle. But again, this is to be expected.

With all that out of the way, let’s discuss the plot. Now, unlike the other Phase 2 films, this is a set up film and thus is really meant to simply introduce a slew of characters, instead of going into a big deep story like the other ones.

Thus, I can let the simple story slide, unlike Thor 2. It’s pretty much a MacGuffin chase, with our heroes trying to take care of some orb thing, with a bunch of trades and our baddie being evil. Thankfully, there is enough depth with the characters to make the story entertaining.

Everything is kept simple and I was happy to follow the minor “complex” parts. It follows the same cues as the Avengers, abiet not quite as epic. You know what drives this film the most? It’s not the action, the humor, or anything like that.

It’s the heart.

Plenty of these films have heart, a lot more than most big blockbusters out there. But somehow, this has some of the most heart I’ve seen in a Marvel film. I’m not just talking about the heartwarming moments. I mean, this film really seems like James Gunn’s love letter to…well everything. Of course, we all know about the 80’s soundtrack, and the film has been often called an 80’s movie with a modern budget. And yeah it is, and that’s why it’s so much fun.

As for the actual heartwarming moments, we have quite a bit in that department. The opening does a good job of getting us to like our hero and they develop quite nicely. Everyone gets a few nice moments, especially Groot. Yeah, no one can resist him because he’s just awesome.

Speaking of which,…damn, I got them credit for kind of killing him off. I say kind of because the Baby Groot thing, but…it still counts as killing him off. It was handled really well and it was an awesome emotional scene.

This film certainly hits the sweet spot in many ways with scenes like that, as well as the tongue in cheek tone. A lot of Marvel films have that and this fully embraces it, and despite having ton of 80’s references it still has an indemnity with its Comic Book roots and character development.

Which isn’t hard, since we have a tree creature and a talking raccoon in the cast. They did a good job keeping a sense of humor, while also managing to have us take it seriously when it has those moments.

Sure, there are a couple questionable moments but it’s the heart really keeps it going. Not to mention the sheer effort that clearly went into this, like with all the Marvel films. But even then, they could have handled certain things better, like the exposition. Obviously it’s hard to juggle a whole team of characters without lead in movies, and while they made each character fully likable and well written, the script sometimes just blankly states what their deal is just to get it out there.

Not a big deal, but I had to mention that since as a critic, I must suck the joy out of everything. Despite that, the film works very well at fleshing out these characters just enough for me to enjoy them.

Speaking of which, let’s talk about them. Let’s start our villain, Ronan, played by Lee Pace. He’s…okay. I noticed Marvel tends to focus a lot more on the heroes, and the villain tend to be an afterthought. Thus, Loki has been the only hugely good one, aside from Maybe Red Skull. Ronan is better than the dark elf guy since he has a decent presence and he…works for what he is. But overall, he’s another somewhat forgettable villain.

Onto the Guardians. First up is Groot, voiced by Vinn Desiel. He’s really lovable, even though he only says 3 words. He’s so innocent compared to the others, and here’s the heart of the group. Vinn does a pretty good job, much like The Iron Giant. And just like that one, he’s involved an incredibly heartbreaking scene.

He’s so amazing that his presence earned a few sins redactions!

Next we have Drax, played by Dave Bautista. He’s the least interesting of the group but he’s still cool. He has that “Avenging a loved ones death” thing going on, and he have some humor to him. See, he’s very literal minded, so that leads to quite a few jokes. Dave is mostly known as a wrestler, and we all know how those usually go, but thankfully he’s…good! Not great or anything but he handles this character and his Comedy rather decently. As long as you don’t put on a tooth fairy costume, we’re all cool.

Then we have Rocket Raccoon, voiced by Bradley Cooper. It’s safe to say he’s the most popular from his concept alone. And yeah, he’s pretty awesome. He’s a wiseass of the group and he has a lot of funny lines, and he is very likable. He has a few sweet moments here and there, especially near the end. And yes, Bradley Cooper does play a part in how enjoyable the character is.

And of course we have Gamora, played by Zoe Saldana. Naturally, she’s the badass non sense hot one. She’s great at being that character type but of course she has a few hidden depths. Mostly dealing with her sister who is working for Ronan. They do some interesting things with that and thus she becomes a fun and interesting character.

As for the sister whose name I don’t remember, she is underused but she plays a decent part in the story.

And of course, we have Peter Quill, played by Chris Pratt. It’s weird how much he’s blown up, deservedly so. He brings his usual likability to this role. He ends up being a very likable and interesting main character, mostly due to the whole …dead Mom thing. Man, there’s a lot of Dead loves ones in this movie.

He’s a fish out of water who clearly likes the 80’s and makes a ton of funny references and has the most awesome mix ever. Yes, it is impressive that this film’s soundtrack did so well.

Marvel is good at making it so the main character is one of the best characters in the film, and this is a good example of that. He is very relatable with his story, and he’s also quite funny and has great chemistry with his cast mates.

Actually, everyone has nice chemistry. Just like the Avengers, its fun to see these different characters interact and eventually team up. It should be a strength in a team movie and they certainly pulled it off very well.

All of that good stuff combined makes for a pretty damn good movie. They did a good job of making something that’s different than the usual Marvel Film while also getting the audience invested.

While the film is certainly flawed in a few areas, it’s very good for what it is. It’s a fun space action Team film with good action, likable characters and its own identity with a sense of fun. While I’m not 100 percent on the side of it being Marvel’s best, it really is up there. All its flaws are due to it being the first in a planned franchise, and it adapting a fairly odd and unknown Comic series.

By the way, from what I know, the very original Comics are not the same as this movie. There’s another Guardians book from a bit ago that’s more like it, so that’s the one you want.

So yeah, that’s all I got for this one. I’d say it’s worth the hype and overall it’s a very enjoyable and a solid way to end Phase 2.

Grade: A-

Yeah, that is a bit high and I don’t feel quite as confident with it, but since it is at least in par with the other ones I’ve given that grade, I’ll stick with it.

And that’s every Marvel Phase 2 film, reviewed! …Wait.. That’s the 2nd Pieguy reference I’ve made in a short amount of time. I should stop that.

Sorry I didn’t say a ton on some of the later entries, but I got pressed for time thanks to laziness. Thankfully, I said everything I needed to say and if you feel I left certain things out, go ahead and tell me and I’ll see what I can do.

Overall, Phase 2 managed to be better than Phase 1. That’s mostly due to the fact that they didn’t need to set up a big movie. They had teasers for Avengers 2, but these films existed to tell good stories more then start a franchise. Even the only stand alone is it’s own movie.

Sure, the Phase 1 movies (Iron Man 2) aside all told their own good standalone stories but these movies did that even better. As a whole these Marvel movies show that fun films can be just as credibly as the dark and gritty stuff. They can be stupid but they are mostly a good type of stupid.

I know it’s a cheap target, but they do succeed in every way the Transformers films fail. The humor fits with the characters, there’s a good mix of plot and action, and they tend to get all of those other little things right. There’s certainty room for something like Transformers in this world, but I think stuff like this deserve to earn a billion dollars per movie, even more.

It was fun talking about the MCU again, and while I had to rush things near the end, I think I did an okay job talking about these movies. Yes, I’ll do this again for Phase 3 and beyond.

And as of this writing, Age of Ulton is out and I certainly can’t wait to finally see it. Now, I actually won’t do a General review for it like I usually do. Like I said before, I’ll cover that the first film in a “Look at’ post somewhere down the line after it hits DVD.

I figured it would be more fun to talk about them together, but who knows if it I’ll do it then. I could do it after the 3rd one (both parts cuz that’s the popular thing to do) but we’ll have to say. But I will discuss those films at SOME point, so don’t worry.

And that’s all I got. I hope you enjoyed this little look at Marvel’s film and if you haven’t seen any of those, check them out. I think you will like at least one of them. By the way, you can expect a bunch of Non-Review posts like this in the coming months. The reason they didn’t come out sooner is cuz I had to do this before Avengers 2 came out.

Yeah, that failed but showed up.

Until next time….uh…go avenge something, I guess.

See ya.

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