Daily Archives: July 5, 2019

Late Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel Character Review: Kate Lockley

Dearest readers, I apologize for the late post. The pull of Independence Day was just too strong.

On an administrative note, this will be the last character review post I write about the characters on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. The next group of characters I will be writing about are….you will have to come back next week and find out.

*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. Read at your own risk if you have not watched one or both television series. In this series of character reviews, I will strictly be writing about the characters from the television series, not the 1992 film.

There is something to be said about a well written, human character. They leap off the page and speak to us as if they were right in front us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.

In this series of weekly blog posts, I will examine character using the characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel to explore how writers can create fully dimensional, human characters that audiences and readers can relate to.

There is something to be said for a healthy dose of skepticism. It keeps us sane when the impossible happens and we need to process what has just happened.

On Angel, the skeptic is Detective Kate Lockley (Elizabeth Rohm). A member of the LAPD, she is ignorant of the supernatural world that exists around her. She meets Angel (David Boreanaz) while investigating a murder, thinking that he may be a potential suspect. But she doesn’t know that Angel is trying to find the killer. Her obsession with him as the killer grows the point in which she breaks into Angel Investigations and starts to search the site without a warrant. This leads to a scuffle with the real killer in which Angel saves her and Kate is able to give justice to the victim’s loved ones.

Angel is cleared of all charges and they become sort of partners. But Kate does not know that Angel is a vampire. When her father is killed by a vampire and she learns who he really is, Kate goes on a quest to rid Los Angeles of the supernatural. Then a resurrected Darla (Julie Benz) decides to drink her way through the denizens of Los Angeles. Believing that Angel is responsible for the murders, she goes to arrest him, but lets him go because she knows that she knows that he can stop this crime.

The skeptic becomes a believer to the nth degree, but her obsession gets her fired. She nearly dies from an overdose of pills and alcohol, but Angel arrives in the nick of time to revive her. Their relationship ends with the belief that there is someone watching over them and protecting them as they fight against the forces of evil.

To sum it up: Kate works as a character because she is the eyes of the audience. While the other characters are well versed in the supernatural world, Kate only knows of the non-supernatural world. Her exposure opens her eyes and eventually teaches her acceptance, which often comes after a few bumps and bruises. Viewers remember Kate because of this journey and her eventual understanding that there is often more than meets the eye.

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Filed under Character Review, Feminism, Television

Toy Story 4 Movie Review

When a sequel or a prequel to a beloved franchise is released, the hope is that not only will it live up to the original work, but it will expand the story.

In 1995, the original Toy Story was released. It was an instant success and revolutionized animated films. 24 years later, Toy Story 4 was released.

The 4th film in the series picks up just after the 3rd film ended. Bonnie (Madeleine McGraw), the young girl who inherited the toys is starting Kindergarten and is not feeling it. During orientation, she creates Forky (Tony Hale) and immediately adopts him as one of her toys. But Forky is not immediately convinced that he is a toy.

When Bonnie’s parents take her on a road trip before school starts, Woody (Tom Hanks), makes it his business to ensure that Forky does not escape. But inevitably, he does, separating Woody from Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) and the rest of the toys. Before reuniting with the rest of the crew, Woody meets up with Bo Peep (Annie Potts), his unrequited crush who has become a bad-ass. They have to rescue Forky from the hands of potentially psychopathic Gabby Gabby (Christina Hendricks) with the help of Duke Kaboom (Keanu Reeves).

Upon release of the trailer, some may have asked why this film was necessary. The previous film tied up the narrative strings so perfectly that this film may seem like an easy cash grab by Disney.

It’s not. It expands the narrative in new and different ways. I loved the expansion of Bo Peep as a character and the message that it sends to women and girls of any age. I also loved the narrative of coming to the realization that things and relationships change. When we come to that point, we can either stay where we are or have the courage to step into the unknown for an adventure that is not yet revealed to us.

This film has humor, has heart and speaks to both children and adults.

I absolutely recommend it.

Toy Story 4 is presently in theaters.

P.S. Stay past the initial credits. The post credit scenes are worth the wait.

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Filed under Feminism, Movie Review, Movies

The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty Book Review

When I was growing up in the 1980s and 1990s, the late former First Lady Barbara Bush looked like a grandmother straight out of Hollywood central casting. Her white hair was cut short, she was known for her pearls and matronly clothing and she was the matriarch of a large family. But there is so much more to her than the image.

Susan Page’s new biography, The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty, tells the story of Mrs. Bush from her perspective. Born in 1925 to a wealthy family whose roots went back to the founding of America, she was the third of four children. Equally belittled and ignored by her mother about her weight, the future First Lady never got over the comments she received as a child.

In her late teens, she married the future President George H.W. Bush. Married for seven decades, she brought six children into the world. Her oldest son, George W. Bush, followed in his father’s footsteps. Her oldest daughter, Robin, died of Leukemia at age three, leaving her mother with an emotional scar that never healed. Later as an adult, she battled depression and aided both her husband and son during their time in the White House.

Containing interviews with Mrs. Bush, President Bush, her family, political aides, press clippings, diary entries and other details, this books is the complete story of one of America’s most respected First Ladies.

One of the things that I was surprised about was how emotionally strong and outspoken Mrs. Bush was. Like many women of her generation, her adult life focused on her home and her family. But unlike the Donna Reed-like ideal of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Mrs. Bush was not the yes-woman to her husband nor was she the picture of motherly perfection. She was bold, she was outspoken and not above providing unsolicited advice. She may not have been a traditional feminist, but she is the definition of a strong, intelligent and capable woman.

This book is a must read, especially if one is a political junkie. It sheds light not just on the public side of Mrs. Bush, but also the private that only a few were privileged to see.

I recommend it.

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Filed under Book Review, Books, Feminism, History, Mental Health, Politics

Flashback Friday-The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency (2006-2008)

To be a mentor is a wonderful thing. The hope is that the person you are mentoring will accomplish everything they hope to accomplish.

From 2006-2008, The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency aired on the Oxygen network. Starring the self-proclaimed original supermodel Janice Dickinson, the show followed her as she opened her own modeling agency, hired would be models and clashed with her business producer Peter Hamm. The show also followed the models as they auditioned and went to work.

This show is the standard reality show. I watched while it was on the air. Looking back, I regret watching it. It was nothing more than free promotion for it’s star and her wannabe models.

Do I recommend it? Not really.

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Filed under Flashback Friday, Television, TV Review