Sarah Connor Chronicles: Goodbye To All That, an episode review

The last time I looked, Cameron is in psycho-Terminator mode, but she's obviously learned to conceal it well. Artificial intelligence indeed.

Anyway, Goodbye To All That returns to a classic Terminator premise - the phonebook killer. When a terminator can't locate a person down through the normal records, they'll hunt through the local phonebook to get a name and address and work through each person of that name until they're all dead. It happened to one Miss Sarah Connor once.

So, history repeats itself when our intrepid gang of technophobes discover a plot to kill one Martin Bedell. Bedell is a key military strategist to the future resistance, and obviously important enough to snuff out now. Thankfully, Derek Reese is a step ahead of the terminators on this one and knows Bedell is at a military training facility. So, he and John set off to infiltrate the academy while Sarah and Cameron go off to protect the other Martin Bedell - a child who's home alone with a T-888 pulling up outside his house.

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Merlin: The Moment Of Truth, an episode review

If The Moment Of Truth forgot one thing, it was that elusive moment where Merlin revealed his secret to Arthur, thus proving that magic could defend kingdoms instead of destroying them. And by the end of this episode, those who dwell on my sofa with me for each installment of Merlin were baying for Arthur to know his manservant is a sorcerer.

But let's leave the thorny issue of Merlin's secret to one side for a moment. I'm becoming giddy with excitement at this series, which is only now beginning to hit its stride.

And one thing The Moment Of Truth offered in spades was a massive leap forward in character development. The bonds between Arthur and Merlin appear closer than ever. Gwen and Morgana happily abscond to Merlin's home village to help him fight the local tyrant, and even Arthur breaks with grumpy old Uther's orders and follows on to help his servant out. Hell, even old Gaius gives Merlin an emotional hug as he sets off on his journey. I was choked up.

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Leave Tom Cruise alone!

Since Tom Cruise has become the public face of Scientology, he's been widely ridiculed in the press. Then he did that thing on the Oprah Winfrey show. You know, leaping about on her sofa yelping about being in love with Katie Holmes.

Like the simple-minded residents of Springfield in The Simpsons, the general public have forgotten a legacy of fantastic films, and a friendly, down to earth red carpet manner just so they can re-imagine Cruise as a moronic, brainwashed cult member.

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Dreamcatcher by Stephen King, a book review

Dreamcatcher - Stephen King (Book Cover)

The last novel of Stephen King’s that I read was The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon - the book which preceded Dreamcatcher. I’ve also seen the Dreamcatcher movie but thankfully have no memory of that apparent travesty, so I read the book with virtually a clean slate.

Anyway, useless trivia aside, let me tell you a bit about the plot, and then I’ll fill you in on what I thought of the book.

The Story

In their early adolescence, four boys do a brave thing and stand up for a young handicapped boy who is being bullied by some larger boys. They form a tight friendship with Douglas ‘Duddits’ Cavell and due to this shared bond, they all discover that to some extent they have telepathic or extrasensory powers.

Unable to do anything life-changing with these powers, the four grow up, and loose touch with their childhood friend. The four meet up annually for a hunting trip in the woods. On the last of these trips, the four find themselves in the middle of a military quarantine area just following an actual, honest to goodness alien invasion.

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Merlin: Are you waiting for Morgana to turn evil?

Well, [[Merlin (TV Series)|Merlin]]-watchers, after that episode where Morgana got all doe-eyed about the kid who turned out to be Mordred, is anyone else waiting for her to switch sides?

In a lot of literature, Morgana is portrayed as an adversary of Arthur and Camelot. This is going to sound geeky, but I remember this old Superman graphic novel where Superman gets transported back in time to Camelot and has to do battle with Mordred and Morgaine le Fey (another name for Morgana).

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The Sarah Connor Chronicles - The Mousetrap, episode review

Sarah Connor Chronicles - The Mousetrap

I’ve not written much about [[Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (TV Series)|Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles]] this series, but The Mousetrap was an interesting episode.

First, I loved the hat tip to Arnold Schwarznegger – the actor whose identity Cromartie stole appearing in a Conan The Barbarian type movie. It was a cheesy bit of humour that I simply didn’t expect to see in this particular show.

Anyway, Charlie (Sarah’s old flame) and his wife are leaving town after being warned by Agent Ellison that they’re not safe. However, while pulled in at a roadside garage, Cromartie kidnaps Charlie’s missus. Distraught, Charlie calls John for help, and gets precious little sympathy from Sarah. She relents though, and heads off with Derek in search of Charlie.

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Michael Crichton died of cancer yesterday

Sad news for any fans of the famous author Michael Crichton - he died yesterday (4th November 2008) after what has been described as a "private battle with cancer". He was 66 years old.

I was a big fan of Crichton's work during the 90's, and read all the Jurassic Park novels, and I actually read his "sexual politics in the workplace" novel Disclosure before I saw the film.

Many of Crichton's novels were given film adaptations, including Congo, Sphere and The Andromeda Strain. However, after Jurassic Park, his biggest achievement must be the long running medical drama, ER, which debuted back in 1994.

An official statement from the author's family reads:

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Heroes: Sylar as good guy?

So far in this third series of Heroes, [[Sylar]] has been recruited to the
good guys, and he’s discovered that he is fully-fledged member of the Petrelli
clan.

There’s a nice counter-point here. As Sylar makes his first tentative steps
towards becoming a ‘goodie’, his squeaky clean brother Peter inherits Sylar’s
craving for power. Symbolically, the two have swapped places – the irredeemably
evil Sylar showing signs of humanity, a sudden bond with Angela Petrelli and a
seemingly genuine desire to do the right thing.

At the same time, Peter Petrelli is losing the plot pretty fast, almost
giving Nathan a special power-sapping lobotomy. Which is kind of strange,
because Sylar killed in order to take people’s powers, but Peter already has the
ability to gain powers just by being close to another superhero. So whatever
gift has been passed to Peter, it includes a compulsion to murder, which puts
him in league with the bad guys he so reviles.

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Dawn Porter - The Polygamist's Wife

I love Dawn Porter! In tonight’s episode, she finds herself in the house (and
the bed) of
a Polygamist
. Don’t worry, she didn’t quite go that far with her
investigative journalism, but in tonight’s show, Dawn spends some time with a
polygamist family in a town in America.

In the midst of a scandal about child abuse within a polygamist community,
Dawn finds herself among a group of people who are suddenly suspicious about how
they might be perceived by the outside world. Nevertheless, they take the
decision to allow Dawn into their lives.

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Anne Rice – Servant Of The Bones, a book review

Servant Of The Bones is a novel from Anne Rice written
during the mid-nineties. Having written extensively about vampires, mummies and
witches, the story introduces another supernatural creature – the Genie.

Azriel is the son of a Jewish merchant in ancient Babylon. Living amid the
opulence and splendour of the court there, he starts to see the Babylonian god
Marduk. When the members of the court realise this though, they conspire to use
Azriel to invoke a centuries-old enchantment – they drug him up and involve him
in a ceremony to welcome the conquering Persian, Cyrus (no relation to Billie
Ray). When the ceremony is over, Azriel is numb and knows he is dying. However,
he is brought to another place where his body is placed in a caldron of boiling
gold. As the pain overcomes him, he has an out of body experience and his spirit
floats above the cauldron as his body dies and is boiled down to the bones.

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