Author: Raymond Chandler
Publisher: Penguin (Popular Penguins)
Every time I finish a book by Raymond Chandler I get sad, as there’s one less Raymond Chandler book for me to read.
I’ve said before that The Big Sleep is my favourite novel… and this didn’t change that. I enjoyed Farewell My Lovely, but the mystery wasn’t terribly interesting and I found certain character moments quite predictable; it would have been a fun weekend read if I wasn’t holding it up to the grand standard of its predecessor. I’ll try the next book, but the shine has definitely worn off a bit.
I don’t think anyone at Marvel does any research before trying to depict Australia. First we had the terrible, utterly ridiculous depiction of the Gold Coast in BENDIS!’s All-New X-Men #1, and now we have “illegal maritime arrivals” arriving in Canberra in Dexter Down Under #1. The police in Canberra also use American ranks – Lieutenant and Captain, which aren’t used by the ACT Police. At one point, one of the police officers who seemed to be from ACT Police announced herself as a Sergeant in the AFP – except that AFP officers in such a role are titled “federal agents”.
Created by: Tony Ayres
Cast: Dougie Baldwin, Joel Lok, Rahart Sadiqzai & Matthew Testro
I’m really torn on what to thing about this. On one hand, I love the premise – four boys find themselves in an alternate world where they never existed, hunted by a demon; on a second hand, I did find it quite engaging; on my third hand, I know people who could have executed it better.
The writing was fairly cheesy but very, very well-paced. I didn’t feel at any point that I was watching filler, and the last couple of episodes felt suitably action-packed. That said, the writing had the major flaw of no character wondering appropriately why these boys know so much about them – if a stranger walked up to me and said something private about me that they shouldn’t know, I’d demand to know how they know it. Here, they ask and when they’re brushed off they let it go, even when it happens many times.
I feel bad for the actors, too. Rahart Sadiqzai did a standout job acting here. He was really, really good. But Matthew Testro, a much weaker actor, will be the one who goes on to Home and Away and the inevitable show on American’s ABC Family channel, based purely on his looks. That’s such a shame.
The twist at the very end has me really excited for season two!
Starring: Tim Curry
I first saw this TV mini-series when I was six years old, and it traumatised me. For years I was afraid not of clowns, or spiders, but of Pennywise specifically – I’d have to check under the bed and in the cupboards, and it was the basis for many of the OCD rituals that developed leading up to my being diagnosed with OCD when I was nine.
I tried watching it a couple of times as a teenager, but early scenes would trigger panic attacks and I’d give up.
Watching it now… it isn’t very scary, and it isn’t even that interesting a film. It seems like a kids’ adventure film with SOME VERY LOUD ADULTS thrown in for some reason. The only thing I really liked about it was Jonathan Brandis’ performance, which was very good (and has me wanting to watch seaQuest DSV again).
Author: Ben Aaronovitch
Publisher: Del Rey
Midnight Riot (Rivers of London in its original British release) is a fairly odd piece of urban fantasy. It tells the tale of Metropolitan Police Constable Peter Grant who, after seeing a ghost, is co-opted by the Met’s very own occult investigator, Inspector Nightingale. Peter finds himself having to make peace between the spirits of the river Thames and its tributaries while also finding a mystical murderer basing his crimes on the story of Mr Punch.
I really don’t know what I think about this book. It didn’t offer anything that made it stand out positively for me, but it wasn’t bad. Generally. I did get frustrated especially near the end where Peter began to solve things using knowledge we never saw him gain – he just suddenly knows things, and when an explanation is offered, it is usually him telling us he learnt something off-page. That said, I am curious about the next book in the series – the main characters would have been more engaging without all the river nonsense, so the next book may be more engaging for that reason alone.
Created by: Aaron Korsh
Starring: Gabriel Macht and Patrick J Adams
My views on this season are the same as those on season one – particularly that no-one seems to notice, and hence there are no consequences for, the fact that Mike doesn’t actually know how to do things.
That this season seems to be just more episodes of season one is both a good thing and a bad thing. It’s good in that it maintains everything that worked well in the first place, but bad in that it keeps the negative elements and offers nothing new. The novelty is wearing off a bit, but not so much that I won’t watch season three.