Movie Review: The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Rise of Electro (2014)

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The movie starts with a flashback, showing Richard Parker (Campbell Scott) on a plane, uploading files. His wife Mary (Embeth Davitz) heads to the bathroom and Richard is attacked by an assassin. Richard manages to upload the data just before the plane explodes, killing everyone on board.

Years later, Richard’s son peter is busy saving the world, disguised as Spider-Man. Spider-Man is regarded by many as a vigilante, but it is clear that he is helping rid Manhattan of criminals. He catches Aleksei Systevich (Paul Giamatti) who is trying to steal a truck from Oscorp containing plutonium vials. Spider-Man saves the life of an Oscorp employee, Max Dillon (Jamie Foxx), a guy with serious confidence issues who regards himself as unimportant. Spidey tells Max that he is very important and that he is his Spidey’s friend. Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) is on the phone with Peter, asking him where he is. Peter sees a vision of George Stacy, Gwen’s deceased father who had asked Peter to steer clear of Gwen for her safety. Later that night he ends their relationship again, trying to honor that promise he made.

spidey and max

Spider-Man and Max 

Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan) returns to Manhattan to visit his dying father, Norman Osborn. Norman, the CEO of Oscorp, tells Harry that he is a disappointment to him and that the disease that is killing him will kill Harry as well unless he manages to find a cure to it. Norman dies, leaving his young son as the CEO of the billion dollar empire. The board of Oscorp is a bit worried and Harry quickly makes enemies with them. Peter, Harry’s old friend, visits him and after a bit of awkwardness they connect again.

Max becomes obsessed with Spider-Man. He is still being bullied at work and he is ordered to fix some faults in an Oscorp lab on his birthday. He loses his footing and falls into a tank with modified electric eels and they attack him, mutating him into Electro. He heads towards Time Square, confused, and Peter rushes to him after hearing Gwen might be heading to England on scholarship. Max causes a blackout with his surging power, but Spider-Man is unable to calm him down when the police shoot at him. Max is taken to the Ravencroft Institute for further investigation.

Electro

Electro

Harry is worried when he starts to see his disease developing. He realizes that Spider-Man is an example of his father’s successful research and thinks that some of Spider-Man’s blood will save him. He asks Peter, who sent in a picture of Spider-Man, to contact him and ask for his blood, obviously not knowing that Peter IS Spider-Man. Peter is worried that the blood will make Harry sicker or make him something dangerous, as previously seen. They part with bad blood between them. The Oscorp board-members rock up and frame Harry for Max’s accident and he is successfully removed as CEO. Harry’s assistant tells him of equipment and venom that can save him, hidden somewhere in the building. Harry goes and talks to Max, asking for help. Max agrees and kills his captors. They escape, Harry injecting himself with the venom. What will happen to Harry and Electro? Can Spider-Man save Manhattan once more and will Harry ever find out that Peter, his friend, denied him blood that could save him? Will Gwen go to England or continue risking her life to be with Peter?

Rating: 7/10

I really enjoyed this. I know a lot of people had some issues with it, but I thought it was really entertaining. The special effects were sound and I liked how Peter Parker developed, fought with himself and his morals and how he constantly struggled with his feelings for Gwen Stacy compared to the promises he made to her father. The chemistry between Garfield and Stone is really strong and they make a very strong pair on screen. I love Spider-Man’s cocky attitude and humor. He is really funny and I had a few good laughs during the movie.

I thought Dane DeHaan was excellent as Harry Osborne. He was so sad and broken by his horrible father and he really tried to be a good guy. I liked the relationship between Peter and his aunt, and how sad it was when she thought he was seeking information on his parents because she wasn’t a good enough mother to him. I like how they give a bit more clearance where his father went and what exactly happened there and how it affected Peter. I thought the special effects were well done, both on Electro and the Green Goblin. I loved Electro, but thought he and the GG should have been more developed and gotten up to more nonsense than they did. Jamie Foxx was thoroughly entertaining as Max, surprising me with how well he played a geek who really didn’t fit in and was bullied by everyone. I had sympathy with his character and understood why he went crazy when he finally had a bit of power.

Have you seen it? What did you think?

 

 

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The Iconic Book Scene – Not my daughter, you bitch

not my daughterSource

‘NOT MY DAUGHTER, YOU BITCH!’

Mrs Weasley threw off her cloak as she ran, freeing her arms. Bellatrix spun on the spot, roaring with laughter at the sight of her new challenger.

‘OUT OF MY WAY!’shouted Mrs Weasley to the three girls, and with a swipe of her wand she began to duel. Harry watched with terror and elation as Molly Weasley’s wand slashed and twirled, and Bellatrix Lestrange’s smile faltered, and became a snarl. Jets of light flew from both wands, and the floor around the witches’ feet became hot and cracked, both women were fighting to kill.

‘No!’Mrs Weasley cried, as a few students ran forwards, trying to come to her aid. “Get back! Get back! She is mine!’

Hundreds of people now lined the walls, watching the two fights, Voldemort’s and his three opponents, Bellatrix and Molly, and Harry stood, invisible, torn between both, wanting to attack and yet to protect, unable to be sure that he would not hit the innocent.

“What will happen to your children when I’ve killed you?” taunted Bellatrix, as mad as her master, capering as Molly’s curses danced around her. “When Mummy’s gone the same way as Freddie?’

“You-will-never-touch-our –children-again!” screamed Mrs. Weasley.

Bellatrix laughed, the same exhilirated laugh her cousin Sirius had given as he toppled backwards through the veil, and suddenly Harry knew what was going to happen before it did.

Molly’s curse soared beneath Bellatrix’s outstretched arm and hit her squarely in the chest, directly over her heart.

Bellatrix gloating smile froze, her eyes seemed to bulge: for the tiniest space of time she knew what had happened, and then she toppled, and the watching crowd roared, and Voldemort screamed.

Wow.

Just typing this out gave me such goosebumps. I LOVE this part. It is definitely one of the best events across seven excellent books. Firstly, it builds so well. The entire book is so edgy and emotional and by the time you reach the last fight at Hogwarts you are way too involved. I love how Bellatrix dying at Molly’s hand shows Molly Weasley’s true essence. From the Philospher’s Stone, Molly is portrayed as a kindly mother, content staying at home and raising her kids. She is never fully engaged in the battle against Voldemort and seems to be a little on the sidelines. Molly constantly worries about the people she loves – all her children, Harry, Hermoine and her husband. She is everything Bellatrix never could be – kind and loving and a good person. Bellatrix is so abdominable. There is nothing in her except devotion to her cruel master. She is an powerful witch but has no love to balance out that immense power and she is unable to understand everything Molly believes in. She is Voldemort’s most loyal follower, she gleefully tortured Neville’s parents into insanity, killed Sirius and countless others. There is nothing remotely good in her. They are so different and this fight proves that Molly’s version of magic and life is much stronger than Bellatrix, and that choosing love and family over power is stronger than anything in the world. The last few chapters of The Deathly Hallows is so action packed and emotional and this scene just fits perfectly. The first time I read it I was rocking backwards and forwards, horrified but unable to put the book down. Who knew Molly had such power in her?

If you want to take part in the IBS, email me your quote from your favorite book at natashastander@gmail.com 🙂

 

Movie Review: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

Last Crusade

 

Plot:

While out horse-riding with his Boy Scout Troop, 13-year old Indiana Jones (River Phoenix) discovers a group of thugs that found a golden cross. Indiana, who wants the cross in a museum instead of in someone’s personal possession, steals it. Back at home, where his father, Henry Jones, Sr. (Sean Connery) is busy doing research on the Holy Grail, Indiana is forced to hand the cross over to the sheriff who returns it to the thugs’ leader.

Years later, Indiana recovers the cross and donates it to a museum as he always wished. He is back teaching archaeology at the university and he is swamped with work and over eager students. Walter Donovan (Julian Glover), an ancient artifact collector, meets Indiana and tells him that Henry has disappeared while looking for the Grail in Venice. Indiana finds a package in the mail from his father, containing the diary Henry kept with all the Grail data he has.

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Indiana and his friend Marcus travel to Venice where they meet Dr. Elsa Schneider (Alison Doody). Indiana immediately finds a secret passageway under a library. Indy and Elsa find a complete version of the inscription Henry had used, revealing the location of the Grail. The passageway is set alight by members of the Brotherhood of the Cruciform Sword, a society that protects the Grail from evil goers who want it only for power. After Indiana catches the Brotherhood’s leader, Kazim (Kevork Malikyan), he reveals to Indiana where Henry is being held captive – Castle Brunwald on the Austrian-German border.

Indiana rescues Henry but is betrayed by Elsa and Walter Donovan, both undercover Nazis. They had patiently waited for Indiana to find the Grail, and tie him and his father up in the castle while awaiting execution. The Jones’ escape and head to Berlin to retrieve the diary from Elsa. They are successful but Indiana has a terrifying face to face encounter with Adolf Hitler.

After escaping capture yet again, Indiana and Henry meet up with Sallah (John Rhys-Davies) in Hatay. They learn that their friend Marcus (Denholm Elliot), who had accompanied them on the quest, has since been abducted by the Nazis. The Nazis are moving towards the Grail’s location with the map they stole from Marcus.

Indiana, Henry and Sallah find the Nazis. Henry is captured while trying to rescue Marcus. Indiana and Sallah manage to save both Henry and Marcus.

The four catch up with the Nazis once again who are now trying to retrieve the Grail. In the temple there are a series of booby-traps and they know only Indiana has the abilities to get through them. As motivation, the Nazis fatally shoot Henry because they know the only way Indiana can save his father is through the restorative powers of the Grail. Indiana gets through the traps and finds a room with plenty fake replicas of the Grail and one true one. The keeper of the Grail tells Indiana that he can have it if he chooses the correct cup; any other cup will kill him. Elsa and Donovan arrive and she betrays Donovan by giving him the wrong cup and killing him. Indiana chooses the right cup and rushes back to his father, restoring him to full health. Elsa forgets the keeper’s warning and takes the cup out of the boundaries it is supposed to stay in and the temple begins to collapse. She dies when she tries to save the cup, and Indiana nearly goes the same way but listens to his father and leaves the cup. He, Henry, Sallah and Marcus escape into the sunset while the temple collapses behind them.

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Rating: 7.5/10

I liked this movie so much more than the Temple of Doom. It wasn’t nearly as depressing or dark and had the trademark adventures from both previous movies. I loved that they made the Nazis the enemy again. I like that their enemies were basic, you know (not that the Nazis were basic or not a proper enemy, rather that everyone had a common enemy and everyone could associate)

I am not a fan of woman beater Connery and thought his character was rather idiotic. He seemed strange and a bad father and nothing he did endeared him to me. To be fair, I probably would have liked the character more if someone decent portrayed Dr. Jones Senior.

Even with her questionable ethics, I liked Dr. Elsa Schneider. She is an impressive female lead and a very decent villain. I found her classy and beautiful and intelligent and miles different from Willy (a definite improvement).

I loved the return of Sallah and the University and how popular Jones was with his students.

The scene where Indiana comes face to face with Hitler was quite scary. I liked how much more authentic the Nazis were – in the Raiders of the Lost Ark they were portrayed as a bit dumb, but in the Last Crusade it is obvious that they were an evil force rapidly gaining speed. Those flags hanging everywhere were quite chilling.

I am happy I started watching the Indiana Jones franchise. It is fun and entertaining and I can see myself watching at least two of the three again at a later stage.

This movie had everything needed to be a good action movie. It moved fast and I wasn’t bored at all. Really good stuff!

Top Ten Movies: Life of this City Girl

I’m guest posting over on Zoe’s blog today!

The Sporadic Chronicles of a Beginner Blogger

Ah, I take great joy in welcoming my best friend in the world today to share her top ten movies with us. Natasha runs Life of this City Girl, and her blog deals with movies, books, ramblings and everyday things, a lifestyle blog mixed up with some reviews, too. Now, I know she and I don’t always see eye to eye when it comes to movies (meh, you and that romance stuff), but it does not change the fact that she is my bestie! 😉 Aside from that, she will be arriving in town early this afternoon, and I simply cannot wait anymore! Without further ado, I give you Natasha!

Should you be interested in submitting a Top Ten list, draw up a list of either your top ten personal favourite movies or a top ten list by a specific genre/theme and send it along to me at sporadiczoe@hotmail.com. Hope…

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Movie Review: What a Girl Wants

what a girl wants

Daphne Reynolds (Amanda Bynes) lives with her mother Libby (Kelly Preston), a wedding singer, above a Chinese restaurant in Chinatown, New York. Daphne has never met her father and wishes desperately for a father and daughter dance and to know the other person who made her. Her mother is very vague about it all, telling Daphne that she left her husband before he knew she was pregnant because his secretary had convinced him Lord Henry Dashwood (Colin Firth) was better off without him.

Daphne takes matters into her own hands and flies to London. She sees on TV that her father is running for election to become Prime Minister. She meets Ian Wallace (Oliver James), a nice English boy who she gets along with before she heads to look for her father.

Daphne sneaks into Dashwood manor and is caught, and Henry initially believes she is paparazzi. When she explains everything he is hurt that he was never told but wants to get to know her better. This doesn’t jibe well with his fiancé, Glynnis (Anna Chancellor) and his soon to be stepdaughter Clarissa (Christina Cole). Glynnis is the daughter of Henry’s secretary, Alistair (Jonathan Pryce), the man who had orchestrated Libby’s exit from Henry’s life.

Clarissa resorts to dirty tactics to discredit Daphne, but she becomes quite popular for her strange American ways. Armistead Stewart (Ben Scholfield) a preppy rich kid is interested in Daphne. This makes Clarissa dislike her more because she wants to date Armistead. Daphne ends up pushing him into the Thames when he tries to kiss her, causing another publicity scandal for her father.

Henry tells Daphne in the nicest way possible that she is ruining his career and Daphne decides to hide away her true self and become more ladylike. This starts working and she becomes the press’s darling. Ian is very upset by it all because it isn’t who he has come to like and know.

Will Daphne ever be able to be herself again? Will she and Ian end up together? What will Lord Dashwood do when he finds out that Alistair sent away his pregnant wife?

Rating: 4.5/10

Why do chick flicks have bad names?

Because of movies like What a Girl wants. They take horrible actors and throw in one good actor in (Just what was Colin Firth thinking) and expect one good one to save the rest. Then, as an added bonus, a completely unrealistic story line is woven – do American parents routinely allow their children to just fly to another continent or was Libby a special case? The movie is completely PG friendly and sanitized to death. The English people are ridiculously portrayed – to make the American girl look cool, which failed, and does not bring the expected humour to the movie. I want to call Colin Firth and ask exactly what he was thinking being in this film. Thoroughly NOT recommended.

The Iconic Book Scene – The Fault in Our Stars

Today’s book scene was sent to me by Zoe, who blogs over at the Sporadic Chronicles of a Beginner Blogger. She has an amazing blog full of reviews on books, movies, and series. Go head over to her page and follow her if you haven’t already 🙂

The Fault in Our Stars is such an amazing book to read. You can read my review here and Zoe’s here. I can’t wiat to see the movie

Iconic Book Scene - Zoe

If you want to take part in this – please send me your favorite book quote at natashastander@gmail.com

Movie Review: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)

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Plot:

It’s 1935, and Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) is risking his life again. He narrowly escapes a crime boss, Lao Che (Ray Chiao), in Shanghai with his sidekick Shorty (Jonathan KeQuan) and gets the unfortunate task of having to take night club singer Willie Scott (Kate Capshaw) with them. They board an airplane but the plane belongs to Lao and when the flight attendants and pilot skydive out of the plane they are in deep trouble. The plane crashes in the Himalayas and the trio escapes alive through Indiana’s enviable skills.

The first village they get to is Mayapore, and the residents are in a very bad way. They believe the poverty and famine that is plaguing them as well as the mysterious disappearance of their children is because their Sivalinga, a sacred stone they had in a shrine, was stolen by the residents of the nearby Pankot palace. They believe Indiana was sent to them by the Hindu god Shiva to retrieve the stone and restore their village. Indiana naturally agrees to look into the matter and hypothesizes that the Sivalinga might be one of the five famous Sankara stones that give fortune and glory.

The trio is welcomed at the Palace by the Pankot Palace Prime Minister ChattarLal (Roshan Seth) and Maharajah Zalim Singh (Raj Singh) who is still a child. They are invited to spend the night at the palace and attend festivities, where Willie passes out when offered some monkey and eyeball soup. Indiana’s enquiry on whether the palace and an ancient Thuggee cult are indeed behind the village’s downward spiral is politely rebuffed.

willy and the monkey

Within a few hours Indiana is attacked by an assassin. He saves himself and discovers underground passage ways, but a bad move by Shorty causes the room to start closing in on them. Eventually Willy frees them after some hysterical screaming. The trio heads further into the tunnels to see what is going on.

They reach an underground temple where the Thuggees are busy worshipping the Hindu goddess Kali through human sacrifice. High Priest Mola Ram (AmrishPuri) is in possession of three of the five Sankara Stones. He is also behind the enslavement of the village children who are now forced to mine for the two other stones. Ram is hoping to rule the world when he has all five stones. Indiana wants to get the three stones but he, Willie and Shorty are caught. Indy is whipped then forced to drink an evil potion that causes him to serve Mola. Willie is kept as sacrifice and Shorty is put to work in the mines. He manages to break free and wakes Indiana up by burning him with a torch. The Maharajah, also under mind control, uses a voodoo doll to stop Indiana. Shorty awakens the Maharajah with the same methods and afterwards the Maharajah points them in the right direction. Mola gets away but Indy and Shorty get the stones, save Willie and free the village kids.

When the trio escapes, they are cornered by Mola and his men on a rope bridge. After giving Shorty and Willy instructions to tie themselves to the bridge, he cuts it and some of the henchmen become crocodile dinner in the river below. Mola tries to overpower Indy but Indiana invokes an incantation to Shiva to punish Mola for abusing power. The stones grow red hot and Mola and two of the stones fall into the river, and Indiana catches the third. The henchmen are caught by members of the British Army.

bridge

Indiana, Willie and Shorty return to the village to return the stone. The villagers are very happy because they are becoming prosperous once more, and when the children return the trio are the heroes. Indy and Willie kiss after a short argument and all seems well.

So, after watching and completely enjoying Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, I knew I had to embark on another adventure with Indiana. I went in expecting the same hilarious and adventurous experience that I got from the Lost Ark.

Rating: 6.5/10

I have to say that I didn’t find the Temple of Doom even nearly as entertaining as the Raiders of the Lost Ark. It was very dark, but that would have been fine if I could like the female lead more. Really, Winnie may be one of the worst roles I have ever seen in movies. She was selfish and a brat and entitled and just not anything I could ever like. She had no acts of bravery or kindness and all her attitude was the wrong kind of attitude. Indy should have left her in the club and went on the adventure only with Shorty. I can’t imagine anyone writing her as a female lead because there was nothing fun or good about her.

I liked the costumes and I once again found the portrayal of anything other than American as stupid hilarious (considering how stupid the vast majority of ‘merica really is… sorry guys). Based on all the Hindus I know I have to say that human sacrifice is way at the bottom of their to-do lists. I found it hilariously inaccurate but can see how other people might be offended. I liked the common Nazi enemy element in the first and third movies – they were at that time the worst thing imaginable (and still is) and I think it worked well with Indiana’s quest to get precious artifacts for museums because the Nazi’s are still known for their love to steal precious artifacts.

It was very dark and depressing overall. I’m deducing that the large amount of children in the film were specifically included to get kids to watch them film. Firstly, I don’t like children in movies. They are either used as cheap tricks or to get a younger target audience, and since I am interested in neither I don’t often watch any of it. Kids in slavery and being beaten are definitely not material for children to watch, a woman (although annoying) being slapped and sacrificed, the drinking of demonic blood – I think a lot of depressed people had influence over the script.

If it sounds like I didn’t like the movie, I did, I just didn’t find it on the level of the first – a thing quite common in sequels. I did like the huge adventure taking place, the good old fight scenes, the sometimes ridiculous 80’s acting, Indiana Jones, who was once again very hot and Indy’s character who is so badass and an excellent explorer.

Have you seen it? What did you think?

5 Things Friday: Five Things South-Africans can talk about except Oscar Pistorius

This case is driving me nuts! It is nonstop on the radio, television, newspapers, twitter, bars, clubs, the queue in Woolworths. Seriously people, can this just stop? I wish he could be either convicted or let loose because I can honestly not survive another day of hearing his name or Barry Roux or Gerrie Nel or stories about fans on balconies and people who are overly affectionate of guns.

So here are 5 topics you can discuss should you feel the need to discuss things of actual importance:

The upcoming elections

Because 99.99% of South-Africans are either dumb or blind sighted by misplaced loyalty, it is a given that the ANC will win this year’s elections. However, feel free to discuss Helen Zille’s ridiculous attire, Mangosuthu Buthelezi’s eternal hope that he will become president and Julius’s “trust-fund” to clear the money he owes to SARS.

Nkandla

Remember that ridiculous estate our President claims he didn’t ask for? Yes, talk about why we are paying so much tax, which brings us to the next point for discussion.

E-tolls

That thing road users in Gauteng are paying obscene amounts for? Mr. President, I did not ask for E-tolls so I am not paying them. Let’s all talk how we will rather go to prison than pay more taxes to our corrupt government so that more fire pools can be built.

Shrien Dewani

Who finally arrived in SA but is now in the loony bin, taking more of our tax money.

Many Other Topics

The Weather, rugby, cricket, soccer, loadshedding, how many chocolates you are planning to eat for Easter, what you will do for easter, etc. etc.

So now that you have topics, please stop talking about Oscar.

Thanks

Natasha

PS: My brand ne laptop is BROKEN, so I am planning a few posts ahead while it is being fixed. Because April is sucking, that is why.

Series Review: Bones Season 1 (2005-2006)

tv_bones01

A friend and a work colleague and my sister told me that I would like watching Bones. With three solid recommendations I eventually just had to try it out. I am SO happy I did. I am travelling through the fourth season right now and I haven’t stopped watching at all.

Here is what happened 🙂

After returning from a “holiday” where workaholic Dr. Temperance Brennan (Emily Deschanel) identified victims of genocide, she is stopped at the airport by Homeland Security. Not knowing who the man tailing her is, Brennan kicks his butt and is arrested. It turns out FBI agent Seely Booth (David Boreanaz) orchestrated her arrest because he needed to know when she would be back in the country and her lab co-workers at the Jeffersonian Institute wasn’t being very helpful with telling him when she might land. Temperance, who is known as Bones, finally agrees to help and she and Booth works to identify bones found in a lake. A working agreement is struck between the Jeffersonian and the FBI that makes Bones and Booth investigative partners.

Booth and Brennan are investigating a man that looks like a suicide bomber. The deceased was part of the Arab-American Friendship League and the President of the USA is upset that he is looking like a fool for trusting an extremist. The deceased’s wife insists she and her husband are lovers of peace and cooperation and the team try to find out why he is dead. The bomb reveals to be planted under his car and this eliminates the suicide bombing and makes it a murder case. Bones discover he and his brother shared some strange skin condition and tries to figure out if it was genetics or something else. They learn that the deceased’s brother is hiding that he is an extremist Muslim by pretending to be Christian and that he plans to suicide bomb a peace summit meeting, they rush to save the lives of the people at the meeting and Booth’s sniper abilities helps them save the day.

The next case takes them to an exclusive private school where children of important dignitaries attend under the strictest security measures. The son of Columbian diplomats is found hanging from a tree and Bones quickly establishes it wasn’t suicide. His mother insists that her son wouldn’t commit suicide that the miracle of him gaining hearing from a cochlear implant was a powerful moment and he wouldn’t commit suicide after something like that. Bones believes her because the evidence points to murder, and Booth has vindictive fun by not giving the snooty principal and his security manager the answer they want. Further investigation shows that the boy was involved in filming sex scenes and bribing sugar mommies at the school, and they find the killer through the videos.

Bones is upset that she needs to travel to Aurora to investigate a hand that was found in bear’s stomach. Looking at the remains, Bones deduces that the man was a victim of cannibalism and didn’t die from the bear attack. When the likeliest victim, a Native American Indian, is proved innocent, everyone in the town becomes a suspect. Brennan is very popular with the men in the small town and Booth dances with her to give her a break from all the unwanted popularity. Back at the lab Zack and Hodgins compete for a delivery employee’s attention but strangely enough Angela is the victor in that war.

A six year old boy’s bones are found murdered near a shopping mall and they find out that he is a boy that was reported missing a few days earlier. It turns out that his mother isn’t his biological parent and that she took him when she found his birthmother dead. She has two other foster kids as well and Bones gets emotionally attached to the case because she herself was a foster child. The murderer is found in the neighbourhood and Bones is very happy with Booth when he manages to get the charges against the mother dropped and the two foster children can remain with her because she is a good parent to them.

Brennan and Angela go out for a night on town and Brennan gets into a fight at a nightclub because she observes the culture in her usually direct and slightly offensive way. When a wall collapses and a skeleton is found underneath, Booth arrives and it becomes a crime scene. The victim is identified as a former DJ at the club, and his known rival and the club’s owner become suspects.

Howard Epps (Heath Freeman), a serial killer on death row, is days fromexecution. He and his lawyer, a woman who believes in justice, ask that his case gets investigated again by the man who put him in jail, Booth. Booth believes he is guilty and is reluctant, but agrees to take a look. There is just enough doubt to get him a delay on his death sentence. In the end they see that Epps is guilty and is just playing with them, but now he won’t get executed immediately. Booth is furious but unable to do anything. Bones breaks Epps’s wrist when he tries to touch her and it makes her and Booth feel a bit better.

A woman is found in a fridge with signs of undergoing through torture and drugging. Booth immediately notices one of the deceased’s friends has a new fridge and he and his girlfriend is arrested. It is obvious they are guilty but they have a good defence team and Brennan is called to testify, something she is bad at because she can’t connect to the jury. Her former professor and lover, Michael, shows up and he and Brennan casually sleep together. She is unable to continue being his friend when he is the witness for the killers and he mocks her during the trial. The prosecutors manage to make Brennan appear human when they ask her why she became an anthropologist, to find her parents that went missing, on the stand, a tip Booth gave them. She is angry with Booth but at least justice prevails and the couple is arrested for their perverted fantasies.

The Man in the Fallout Shelter: A very old set of bones is found in a fallout shelter before Christmas and is sent to the Jeffersonian for identification. The entire team is quarantined after a fungus is released into the lab from the body, and it seems that everyone will be spending Christmas there. Brennan is the Christmas Grinch and no one knows why, but she tells Angela that her parents disappeared right before Christmas as a teen and she and her brother had a huge fight on Christmas day that made him put her into foster care. She sets out to identify the man and learns that he, a white man, had loved a black woman in a time where interracial marriages were illegal. He was murdered for his coin collection but kept the last, most valuable pieces hidden. After an outburst from Angela, Bones makes it her priority to find the elderly woman and let her know the man that she loved never deserted her. They find the now elderly lady and her granddaughter and tell them the news. The elderly lady thanks her for the coins means the deceased’s granddaughter is able to go to medical school. The episode ends with Bones finally opening the present her parents gave her that last Christmas.

The Woman at the Airport.

Bones_season_1_episode_10

Bones and Booth head to Los Angeles to investigate the remains of a young woman found scattered around the airport. Angela has trouble reconstructing the skull because the woman had so much plastic surgery done on her. The deceased’s boyfriend says she was beautiful but never at peace with how she looked, and though he is saddened by her death he is a suspect because he found out that she was a prostitute and very angry about it. They find the specialist who did the surgery and he is cleared of the suspect eventually. Booth and Brennan catches another prostitute who killed her friend because she thought the deceased had tried to steal her rich customer.

The Woman in the Car:

An agent from the State Department arrives at the Jeffersonian Institute to do security checks on the staff. Hodgins is offended when he learns that he isn’t perceived as a threat because he really wants to be perceived as dangerous. Overall, the lab staff just confuses the agent and she is eventually taken off her assignment when she asks Brennan classified information and Brennan makes the right call to the right person about it. During all that Booth and Brennan find a body of a woman in a car and signs that a child was kidnapped. They trace the victim and her son to Carl Decker, a man in witness protection against a weapons manufacturer that sent damaged goods to Iraq and Afghanistan and is subsequently responsible for soldiers’ death. Decker disappears and it is obvious he is looking for his son. He takes the CEO of the weapon’s manufacturer hostage but Brennan manages to calm him down with logic they both understand with their advanced minds. The boy’s finger is sent to the Jeffersonian with a warning to back off. Hodgins traces the general area where the boy is kept and Booth saves the boy and calms him down by using the safe word his father taught him.

The Superhero in the Alley

A decomposing corpse is found in an alley. Brennan establishes it as a teenage boy and he is marked as a comic book enthusiast in his superhero outfit. Booth and Brennan find a comic book store close by that is a place where fans meet and have some cosplay. The deceased, who was already dying of cancer, had his own series of books and character. They suspect the book store owner, who did the graphics for his novels, but he is proven innocent. Further investigation shows that the boy died protecting a woman he worked with when he tried to scare her husband. At his funeral, Booth honours the superhero by laying his Sniper pin on the boys’ casket.

The Woman in the Garden

Brennan and Booth investigate a dug up corpse that was found in the back of a gang member’s car. Another body turns up and it becomes a double homicide and Brennan finds the victims to be related. They investigate the wealthy employees of the victims and eventually find the killer.

The Man on the Fairway

Bones and Zack investigate crash site where Chinese diplomats and an unidentified guest, possibly a prostitute, died. Bones find fragments of a person who wasn’t in the plane but on the ground during the crash. A private investigator, Jesse Kane (Michael E. Rogers) shows up and thinks it is his missing father who was on the ground. Bones connects to him because he is an orphan too, but it is obvious she is in a better place than him. It turns out to not be his father and he asks Brennan how she copes with someone not searching. Bones gives the documents of her parents’ disappearance to Booth so someone can start again.

Two bodies in the Lab

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Two bodies arrive at the Jeffersonian – one that appears to be a victim of a serial killer Booth searched for and another that might be James Cuguni, an old mob boss. Special Agent Jamie Kenton (Adam Baldwin), the Agent who worked on the mob case, arrives to assist the investigation. Bones ignores Booth’s suspicious warnings (and a bit of jealousy) and goes on a blind date with David Simmons (Coby Ryan McLaughlin), a man she met online. She is shot at before she can meet David and he is brought in for questioning but he seems innocent. It seems clear that Bones was shot at because of one of the highly volatile cases she is working on, and Booth vows not to leave her side until they catch who was responsible. He decides to spend the night on her couch to be by her side, but he ends up in hospital when her refrigerator door blows up in his face. Kenton promises to keep her safe but Booth realises what is happening – to distract Booth, Kenton made a victim appear like a serial killer case to shift his focus while the corrupt Kenton went and tried to either mislead or murder Bones. When he realised that she is way too clever to be distracted, he knew he had to kill her. He ties her up and nearly gives her the gruesome death his other victim suffers but the seriously injured Booth arrives and frees her.

Helen Bronson (Mary Mara), a documentary filmmaker, is found dead at the bottom of a shaft tunnel beneath Washington. Bones establishes Helen didn’t die from the fall. Brennan and Booth find an underground society. Their leader, Harold Overmeyer (Glenn Plummer) is an ex-soldier who can’t move on from what he saw in the war and who also holds himself responsible for the victim’s death. Booth and Brennan discover that the underground tunnels contain priceless treasure and that Helen was murdered because she discovered it and someone else wanted it. Booth and Brennan set to find who knew Helen had discovered the treasure and catch the killers trying to take the treasure, and afterwards they take Harold back to his underground friends and he is happy again.

The Skull in the Desert

Angela is on vacation with her photographer boyfriend in the desert. He goes missing and a skull arrives on the sheriff’s porch. Angela calls Brennan and she flies down to New Mexico and confirms the worst – that it is Angela’s boyfriend. Booth rocks up and Sheriff Dawes (James Parks) is upset about it but when he learns that his sister was with the photographer before he died he allows Booth to help with the investigation. A drug syndicate is uncovered and the team races against time to save the Sheriff’s sister while Angela deals with her boyfriend’s horrible death.

The man with the Bone

Booth brings to Brennan a 300 year old bone that may have belonged to Blackbeard. The team gets excited at the thought of pirates and treasures, and Hodgins is only too eager to dive down to collect samples. He befriends Dane McGinnis (Rodney Rowland), a site worker who shares his love for treasure. The team really gets excited when a skeleton is found at the site and they set to date the body. With all indications pointing towards their expected time period, everyone is excited. The body is stolen from the lab and all hell breaks loose. Bones is furious at what happened and wants the skeleton found. Dr. Goodman tracks the theft to a security guard and he is questioned. The bones were planted at the site and everyone is outraged. When their likeliest suspect is dead, they need to look at new avenues and Hodgins nearly pays the price.

Brennan wakes up in a bloody scene and can’t remember what happened to her. She is badly beaten and calls Booth to help her. He arrives in New Orleans and the voodoo priests tell her that Hurricane Katrina was caused by evil voodoo priests. The lab staff at the Jeffersonian calls her with results on a skeleton she can’t remember she sent and she knows it is a clue to her attack. Everything around her points to dark magic but even when Bones becomes a suspect for murder she refuses to believe it was supernatural. In the end her simple use of intellect helps her find the murderer.

The Graft in the Girl

FBI Deputy Director Sam Cullen’s daughter is dying from a form of lung cancer Brennan questions because it prevalent in older people. Investigation reveals that the bone graft she received came from a sick donor and that the company that supplied it has disappeared. More patients who received grafts from the same body are tested for cancer. Although it is too late for Cullen’s daughter, Booth and Bones search for the guilty parties and help the other patients with early detection. Angela does something beautiful and gives Cullen’s daughter a visual tour of the Louvre, something the young artist will never see now because of her cancer.

The Soldier on the Grave

A soldier’s grave is vandalised in what seems a protest suicide the day before he was supposed to be honoured. Bones finds that he was deceased was murdered and that he served in the same troupe as the soldier in the grave. Booth relieves a lot of horrors of his own time in the army and struggles to deal objectively with the case. They investigate the entire troupe and realise that something happened when they were in Iraq that is causing every person that was there to die. Bones manages to console Booth when he reveals some of the things he did in the army by listening to what Angela said that compassion and a simple touch is sometimes the only things that are needed to save a situation.

The Woman in Limbo

Bones is running around as usual, late for everything, when an image Angela created stops her in her tracks. It is her mother, and the devastated Bones insist that it is wrong. Booth opens a case and tries to console Bones. He fetches her estranged brother Russ (Lorean Dean) to help with the investigation. He tells Bones the truth – her parents changed their identities to get away from their lives as high class bank robbers. Russ works with Angela to create a sketch of a man his father pointed out as dangerous when he was a child – Vince McVickers, a man that was in a violent heist gang that turned witness to protect himself. Booth arrests him for carrying weapons and for killing Bones’ mother when they find a weapon that could have killed her. McVickers casts doubt on Max Brennan’s integrity by claiming it was him that killed her mother, not McVickers. The episode ends with a phone message from Max Brennan telling them to stop searching for him.

Rating: 6.5/10

I liked Bones Season One. It came through as a strong pilot and had everything needed to keep people watching. I felt drawn to it because obviously I love the lab side. The characters are strong and colourful and girl power rocks this show. I like Brennan’s unapologetic outlook on life and her confidence in what she believes in. She is so strong minded and she is such a good role model for girls.

Best episode: The Superhero in the alley, Two Bodies in the Lab, The Soldier on the Grave.

Worst episode: The Skull in the Desert. It should have been Angela’s shining moment but Michaela Conlin’s performance fell through.

What irritated me

Bones touching her hair with gloves on. That is DISGUSTING. Why don’t you just contaminate yourself and the bones already?!

The eating in the lab. YEUCH!

Michaela Conlin really is a mediocre actress. She does improve as the show progresses, but she is honestly not the cream of the crop.

The first bunch of episodes ends lamely. Sometimes the episode didn’t even have an obvious villain and end, and when they did there weren’t even arrests or anything.

The overtime these people gladly work

What I loved

The seriously beautiful lab. I would give a kidney to work in a place like that.

The way the characters interact reminds me of how people in the lab really talk to each other.

The characters are funny and intelligent and awkward. I love Hodgins’s short temper, paranoia and conspiracy theories, Angela’s sweet and kind nature, everything about Booth, Bones’ sarcasm, brains and social inadequacy, Zack’s nerdiness and awkwardness. I love how Dr. Goodman tries to manage them but ultimately accept they are experts and should be indulged.

The relationship between Bones and Booth. It is obvious from the start that there is something special between them and that it is inevitable that they end up together. I love how they learn to tolerate each other, and then understand each other and then move towards friendship at the end of season one.

Conclusion

Bones season one is worth the watch but the following seasons need more solid plotlines for the cases. Worth the watch, especially for the significantly more glamorised view of lab life.

Have you seen it? What did you think?