Thursday, August 27, 2015

Fear the Walking Dead, Season 1 Ep 1: Pilot

It's here folks...Fear. Fear the Walking Dead. Where it all begins...

Nick is a druggie living in an abandoned church. He wakes up, hears a noise, and goes downstairs to find a blond chick Gloria feeding on another human. Whaaaaaat?
This is the start of it. WAY before what we know really happens in The Walking Dead. This is the Fear. The beginning of the collapse of civilization.  And it’s set in the City of Angels. Los Angeles, y’all! What up Homie?

We’ve seen the filming around town…the lights and trucks in the riverbeds. The helicopters at night circling and yet…nothing is happening. But – as with all shows, they city you think you know isn’t really real at all. Here’s what happens.

So – Nick wakes to find Glo chewing on a dude, and he FREAKS! Runs into the street and gets hit by a car. He’s taken to the hospital where he’s held on a psych eval, and his mom (a school counselor), step-dad (an English teacher at the same school) try to solve the mystery of what’s going on with him.

Nicky tells them what he saw, and they don’t believe him. Mom Madison goes to work, saves a student from getting caught with a knife, and talks to him about why he’s packing. He says it’s safer in numbers, and he needs protection.  She’s confused and has no idea what’s up with him, and tries to find out what he's talkin' about. She threatens to expel him for the knife, and says don’t screw up - he’s ready for college. He replies:

“No one’s going to college. No one’s doing anything they think they are”

He starts rambling on telling Counselor Madison that there is something happening, and no one knows what it is. 

“They say it’s a virus or a microbe, but it’s spreading. Reports in five states. People are killing.”  

She tells him nothing is wrong.

“If there was a problem we would know about it. The authorities would tell us.”

He’s all “yah, sure. Whatevs”

Meanwhile, sister Alicia is at the hospital and talks to Nick about his shit and he says she’s the perfect one going to Berkeley (Go Bears!) and he’s the effed-up one that got kicked out of Citrus Community (shout out to my Community College folks!). Sorry, that just made me laugh. Because I went to Berkeley. And work at a Community College. And there really is a Citrus Community College. So there. Connection. Bam.

Okay, back to the story. Step-dad has an angry conversation with his ex-wife and son, and then they’re not seen for the rest of the show.  

Then, Step-dad Travis goes to see what really happened in the drug den. He returns to his wife and tells her “something bad happened there.” They go back to the hospital, Nick talks the nurse into unstrapping one of his hands so he can use the bed pan, then the old dude in the bed next to him goes code blue, nurse is distracted, they wheel the guy out and Nick uses that distraction to escape wearing the old dude's clothes looking quite the hipster. 

Mom goes looking for Nick back at the abandoned church/crack den, and she sees for herself the squalor. After seeing everything she’s not sure if she wants Nick back home. As they’re leaving, there’s a police barricade, blocking the exit to the freeway. Travis explains it’s probably a car chase gone bad (because y’all know those happen every week in LA!), and as they’re waiting, the ghetto birds above (those are police helicopters for you non-city /hood folk) announce “Please stay in your cars.” Travis hears shots fired, decides he’s had enough, and gets them the hell out of there. 

Later, a video is leaked of a man down on a backboard and he captures a paramedic. no, he's not giving him a super bear hug - he's attacking him. As other police and firemen try to intervene, he goes after them as well. The video  shows the man attacking, getting shot, then getting up and attacking again, until --- bingo. The head shot kills him and keeps him down. No one can figure out what it is, but there’s speculation of a bad drug on the streets, virus, an outbreak,  an infection. Basically, no one knows what’s coming.  

Sister Alicia is seen with her boyfriend, and he makes plans to meet her at the beach in Venice later. Except, he’s a no-show. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what happened to him.

Travis and Madison then go to see Nick’s friend Cal. He says he hasn’t seen Nick, but invites them inside to make a few calls. Later, you see Cal meeting with Nick at a diner and Cal is cool as shit. Tells Nick that his mom is looking for him – showed up at his folks house and he can’t have that. At all. Cal is his dealer. DUH!

Nick’s asking what Cal gave him. “What was in that shit?” – because he saw Gloria eating another dude. Nick is freaking out over what he saw. Cal tells him he’s going to take care of him, drives him to a deserted river bed, and pulls a gun. Nick and Cal fight over the gun. Shots are fired, and Cal is hit. Down. Bleeding. Not moving. Dead. Shot in the gut.

Then…he gets up! Freaking Zombie! Just kidding. Nick runs away leaving Cal dead on the floor.

Nick then finds mom and step-dad, tells them what happens and they take him back to find Calvin. They see the car, they see the gun under the car, the door is open just like he left it…but Cal is gone. Uh-huh. Zombie! We’ve got a walker!

They go back to the truck and try to get out of the riverbed, they see Calvin and mom and dad get out to see what’s up. Calvin tries to take a bite out of dad’s arm, Nick throws the truck into reverse and plows him down. He’s like the energizer bunny and gets back up. Nick then goes forward with Cal on the hood and pushes him into the riverbed below. Splat. Cal is motionless for a bit, then up he goes!

Of course, all of us WD fans are screaming “You have to shoot him in the head! Cut his head off!!”

“What the hell is happening?”
“I have no idea”

The previews of the season shows the destruction and decline of civilization. The rampant spread of the infection. The fight for survival.

“They do evil because of fear”

In the end, you know this is just a show that takes place in a fake LA County. Want to know how I know this shiz isn’t real? THIS RIGHT HERE:

$2.39 for gas? Bullshit. Gas is at least $3.89 for unleaded and that’s at the cheap Arco stations!

In the end, the show delivered what it was meant to: suspense, evil music, a sense of unknown. 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Truth or Beard, by Penny Reid (Winston Brothers #1). Blog Tour, Review

Beards, brothers, and bikers! Oh my!
 The series that Penny's fans have been waiting for! First introduced in Beauty and the Beard, the Winston Brothers have their own series! 

First up: Duane
Identical twins Beau and Duane Winston might share the same devastatingly handsome face, but where Beau is outgoing and sociable, Duane is broody and reserved. This is why Jessica James, recent college graduate and perpetual level headed good girl, has been in naïve and unhealthy infatuation with Beau Winston for most of her life.
His friendly smiles make her tongue-tied and weak-kneed, and she’s never been able to move beyond her childhood crush. Whereas Duane and Jessica have always been adversaries. She can’t stand him, and she’s pretty sure he can’t stand the sight of her…

But after a case of mistaken identity, Jessica finds herself in a massive confusion kerfuffle. Jessica James has spent her whole life paralyzed by the fantasy of Beau and her assumptions of Duane’s disdain; therefore she’s unprepared for the reality that is Duane’s insatiable interest, as well as his hot hands and hot mouth and hotter looks. Not helping Jessica’s muddled mind and good girl sensibilities, Duane seems to have gotten himself in trouble with the local biker gang, the Iron Order.

Certainly, Beau’s magic spell is broken. Yet when Jessica finds herself drawn to the man who was always her adversary, now more dangerous than ever, how much of her level-head heart is she willing to risk?

My Review:
Penny, Penny, Penny!

Just when I think you can't possibly eclipse the greatness of the Knitting gals, you bring me the Winston Brothers. Dude. Seriously - I can't deal.

They're all awesome. I really can't pick a favorite.

Of course, this book focused on Duane, 1 of 2 red-headed, bearded hot guys. 1 of 2 because he's a twin, but 1 of 6 bearded mountain men in the Tennessee countryside just waiting for hijinks.

Duane is cranky and snarky, has the hots for Jessica. Only Jessica has had dreamy eyes for twin brother Beau (the sweet one) ever since he saved her kitten from a tree. Duane and Jessica were the bickering bunch - grew up constantly fighting, teasing, and tormenting. You know that old childhood saying "When a boy pulls your pigtails, it's because he likes you?" Yah. Duane and Jessica.

Only Jessica doesn't know that she's really hot and bothered for Duane until one night he tricks her, takes her behind the stage at the local community center and kisses her senseless. When she realizes that it's Duane and not Beau, she freaks! Completely befuddled, she soon realizes that her affection for Beau was because he was safe - Duane was the reckless choice, and her wild side needs to take a chance. Except...she's on a timeline and ready to high tail it back out of town as soon as she can save enough to see the world.

Duane isn't giving up so easily. The two get together under a crazy agreement and more chaos ensues. Thrown in some evil dealings by the local biker dudes and brother Jethro that gets Beau and Duane in a bind, a hilarious Cleatus (who steals the show), and drive by appearances by brothers and friends on both sides, and you have an entertaining read on your hands!

I really enjoyed this one, and the small piece of drama thrown in was just enough to make the story not just about Duane and Jessica.

I can't wait for the next in the series! Bring on the rest of the brothers!
Series Description:
Everyone in Green Valley, Tennessee knows that the six bearded Winston brothers have been imbued with an unfair share of charm and charisma… and are prone to mischief.
Truth or Beard is book #1 in the Winston Brother’s series. Each book is a standalone, full length (110k words), contemporary romantic comedy novel, and follows the romantic exploits and adventures of one of the six Winston Brothers.

Add this to your Goodreads reading list:
I was going to kiss her.

But first I was going to strangle her.

“Duane…” She said my name again in that breathless way, making my neck itch and my throat tight. Jessica was looking at me expectantly. Her big amber eyes on mine like I was the center of her world. I liked it too much. It was also irritating because I didn’t know what it meant, what she was thinking. She hadn’t said a damn word to me on our walk back from the lake. She hadn’t called me. We hadn’t spoken since Friday.

Five days. Five days without touching or tasting her.

I was going to kiss her while I strangled her.

Available now at all your favorite book place: 

About the Author: 

SEX! It all started with sex, between my parents. Personally I don’t like thinking about it, but whatever works for you is a-ok with me. No judgment. The sex happened in California and much of my life also occurred in that state until I moved from the land of nuts (almonds), wine, silicon… boobs, and heavy traffic to the southeast US. Like most writers I like to write, but let’s get back to sex. Eventually I married and gave birth to 2 small people-children (boy-6, girl-4 as of this writing).

By day I’m a biomedical researcher with focus on rare diseases. By night I’m a knitter, sewer, lino block carver, fabric printer, soap maker, and general crafter. By the wee hours of the morning or when I’m intoxicated I love to listen to the voices in my head and let them tell me stories. I hope you enjoy their stories.
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