A brunette's babble

The Drama in Dysfunction Interview with playwright, Joan Bigwood


Check our my interview on the brilliant playwright Joan Bigwood of our upcoming production, OR CURRENT RESIDENT.



Unnerving USS Callister


Finally Black Mirror is back and perhaps in the same chaotic way you feel after watching an episode – my thoughts are going to be sporadic and non linear below. I was well and truly ready for my disturbing dose. Eager with anticipation, I wondered just how far down the technological rabbit hole will we go this time? Well, it seems rather than going down a rabbit hole we were out in space hurtling towards an all consuming black hole.

Revenge of the socially awkward nerd indeed!

When I was at university studying film, we often discussed that some horror films walk that fine line of being scary then falling into the cheesy and laughable zone. Once it crossed into a B grade kitsch movie it lost your engagement and the purpose of what a horror film is meant to do. USS Canister definitely had elements that were blended with that uneasy heightened humour but the horror was still very real.

On completion my brain jumped to thinking about this – what will become of mental health services and treatment in the future when you are dealing with the likes of Robert Daly? How many undiagnosed secret personality disorders will be floating around in cyberspace world. If your behaviour isn’t being exhibited in the real world is it even justifiable to condemn someone for online behaviours?  It immediately made me think of the brilliant play ,The Nether, that questions this very idea.

Perhaps the highlight for me was the brilliant Jimmi Simpson. You all know by now I love the characters that he plays. I was having some kind of withdrawal, I admit,  from Westworld so this was a nice appetiser to get me through. Playing Walton we see a two dimensional asshole in the real world in the role of CEO, but a submissive man with layered emotions and a black sense of humour on the spaceship. My favourite bit is his constant shot drinking and referring to drinking poison – because they can with their non existent livers. I think it is safe to say we all might be nicer to our work colleagues just incase on the monthly fridge  they decide to pilfer your leftovers  because you didn’t fill the printer back up with paper.

As is always the case, each episode has so many socially relevant topics we could deep dive into and get very academically focused over them (but my dads of critically theory are over) however, I found the aspect of fandom or worship taken to the extreme in this episode. Imagine the threat this would pose to the generally well protected celebrities of the world or our government leaders. A true and dangerously intimate invasion of privacy.

This is the future people – if we can come up with it in a writing room it is only a matter of time before this is real.




A single snake


My heart momentarily skipped a beat thinking oooh my TV crush is single but it was short lived. Possibly the quickest hook up turn around time post break up on TV! Heavy sigh.

“That boy is a real snake…” my belated mother would’ve said that about Jug and it seems super fitting given that he has now fully embrace his serptenhood. Toni Topaz certainly didn’t waste anytime and you can’t really blame her , he’s the good bad guy  *cue Harry Stiles tunes and she slithers on in for a kisssssss. I  have to say, I was disappointed in Jug here, I thought his brooding romantic notions might surface and he would at least spend more than 1 minute in disbelief – but then again his emotions have been thought he washing machine… seems he was thinking with another type of snake hey hey? (I know…lame)

It was devastating to watch him break from the inside as Archie delivered the blows but given that he was about to start a gruelling gauntlet – he didn’t have too much time to digest and process he just had to surrender and accept his fate.  That’s one way to stop grie  in its tracks.

There’s always a turning point in character development that spurs their journey on or where they realise their true identity and embrace it, step into their power blah blah. This was it team… this was it ! After being beaten, bashed, bruised and bloodied – he still stands tall after the Serpent’s final initiation trial. He is sporting a new snake tattoo on his newly ripped deltoids and muscle tee singlet – so I think my notions of him going back to the good guy journalist nerdy vibe has left the writer’s room. And yet I still remain hopeful that there will be a reveal later of what Betty did what she thought was right and that her and Jug will revert to their former vanilla selves and all will be well again… I think that may be a stretch but I had seen far too many romantic comedies and Disney films to be devoid of all hope.

(On a  complete side note, does it amuse anyone else that Alice Cooper is revealed to be  serpent and that she was rocking that outfit – her character and recent get up  completely remind me of someone who would listen to Alice Cooper’s Trash album – everytime I see her character it takes me back to fond tunes of the 80’s)

What will become of Jughead i wonder…? Will he descend into a downward spiral and start playing NIN – the angry edgy stuff not complete sullen morose tunes…or will he find his way back to the blonde bouncing pony tail?

Kai’s kool – aid


Evan Peters performance would make me drink his crazy kool-aid ( or divine semen!oh my- it’s contextual people) I would drink litres of it after that episode and his fantastic display of his acting gravitas. I love this series, what it represents, uncovers and the dialogues it generates on the gritty topics that need addressing, but the acting… I hope he gets nominated this time round. It is an incredibly wonderful group of cast and crew from all the way down the line.

The way in which Kai divulges information about previous cult leaders to his band of followers is perfection. A salesman at best pitching his crazy cause in that charismatic fashion was compelling to watch. He is the perfect balance of coercion and crazed cult leader. Varying tone and pitch in all the right places, instilling his group with hope and purpose and then, in an instant, preparing them for a reckoning.  After traumatising them with a kool-aid suicide test he erupts with a roar “Why would I kill us?I’m running for Senate!” The complexity and evolution of Kai has been magnificent to watch and that is full credit to Evan Peters. From aspirations of political leadership and misguided intentions to full blown insanity and cultism.

Perhaps the beauty of his character was during the council meeting where Kai proposes and passes the Kai Anderson Internet Freedom and Integrity Act – an act that will monitor certain access to websites and essentially, control them which one senator points out as censorship. The best delivered line of the episode ” we have a generation of candy crush mums” – throughout all seasons the show manages to use the characters as a device to explore topics of paramount social relevance and to look at the actions and implications around us – similarly to that of Black Mirror.

The level of Kai’s delusion escalates each episode and i look forward to how it plays out with Ally especially.. The show challenges me to think about my ow belief systems and that of our wider, global community and how powerful, manipulative and dangerously they can be executed.


Kooky Kai

It’s the little things in life like one of your favourite TV shows returning that make all the difference. Let’s just take a moment before we jump in to recognise how wonderful blue hair looks on a shaggy Evan Peters…goodness. Please note I will not be mentioning clowns because I am still trying to erase them from my mind. Wasn’t it just like The Shining on colourful crack though? YIKES.IMG_9217.jpg

Kai Anderson. Kai with that off-putting yet entrancing blue hair. Kai gyrating with ecstasy over the election announcement of Trump. Kai enjoying a bag of cheesy chips  and then covering himself in them. Kai going to a council meeting and unleashing his speech on fear. Clearly, he fascinated me just like all his reincarnations through the series do but I was left wanting more and wanting to intimately understand him. Unfortunately I will have to exercise my patience and let it unfold but I love when a character does that. Being an impatient Aries has its downfalls, like I want to know the relationship between him and Winter NOW. I want to know the gaps in their relationship and what happened from election night to now.  what is this pinky promise all about – who has seen such an ominous pinky promise before. I also found myself just mesmerised and repulsed simultaneously during scene where he urinates into a condom and distastefully hurls it to some Mexican immigrants and let’s not forget his asshole coffee throwing skills. I suspect I need to unpack some of my issues here with a professional! Maybe he is just some blue haired, small time punk and misfit but maybe there is something more sinister just lingering beneath his cool anarchist personality. Yet, if he is to be a cult leader, he would need to up some charisma for me but then again that intense psychotic stare and blue hair probably would result in me finding myself exposing personal truths over a pinky promise grip. Whatever his angsty, political rants may be I am glued to the TV waiting to see the plot untangle and his character develop.

Blue hair don’t care.


Abhorrent Aunt Lydia


Just when I was feeling somewhat lost with The Leftovers finishing and currently in a bit of a lull until my TV shows come back on air, the commanding Ann Dowd’s presence was back on my screens with her terrifying role as Aunt Lydia in The Handmaid’s Tale.

I am not going to talk about the brilliance of the show and all the moral, political, ethical thoughts I have about it (for there are many!) – I just wanted to acknowledge that some performances go to the core of you and shake you about.  I watch a tremendous amount of TV, and nothing appeals to me more than a lingering effect a compelling character can have on you. Ann Dowd has crawled under my skin in both these shows.

After a brilliant character portrayal as Patti in The Leftovers, I was curious to see what she would bring to this role. She brings it alright! She owns the scenes she is in. If I was ever going to truly understand the phrase ‘boss lady’ – she would embody it. No nonsense here. I liken her to that of a strict, religious teacher – the types my parents would utter about with such disdain. Every word that barks from her mouth is executed with intonation, elegance and a sense of unwavering control. It lures me into a false sense of trust and what a great  way to enhance the book version of the character – she brings a new dimension to her. She is completely committed to this world, her role, and her compliance to  this new dystopian environment is certain.

Perhaps many viewers will find her the most fascinating as she is a woman  in this outrageous world and yet never lets a slither of an emotional response or an opinion on what is happening to the women be known.  I found myself struggling to process this. I was hoping she would question, rebel. I kept hoping she would falter. Like all good villains she in inherently evil to the core. She is so desensitised and accepts her environment fully. Adapt or die. Comply or die. Void of all compassion and empathy. The heinous acts that Aunt Lydia carries out or orders is nothing short of traumatic. A character of duty who, in her twisted ways, I would like to believe wants the girls to be compliant so that there is no further disruption or pain that they need to necessarily endure.

What a powerhouse performance.

Aunty Lydia is sadistic ultimately in my opinion – I leave you with a comment that revealed much about the psychological make up of this character

‘Remember, said Aunt Lydia, for our purposes your feet and your hands are not essential.’



Yassssssssss Younger


What have I been doing and how did this slip off my TV radar and excel spreadsheet of shows to watch? The shame… especially since I pride myself on being across such TV shows, to be fair, my list is sooooo long. Apologies Darren Star. Apologies. Please forgive me Pamela.

Admittedly I haven’t been keeping up with TV as much as I would like to due to certain life events but boy oh boy (and boy being a key highlight of YOUNGER) I am back. (I also want to just throwback #TFW you are singing “coming clean”  by Hilary Duff  at very loud levels in-between studying and consuming vast amounts of chips around 2003 university exam times…goes without saying I have a special place in my heart for her getting me through! Also, WHAT A BABE.)

I have heard many  a good thing about the show ” Younger” – I wanted something comfortable, fun, feminine and light.  Warm and endearing is certainly what you get. I also find that I seem to be crushing on or attracted to younger men so the premise of the show appealed. Sometimes these guys are quite a few years younger….and sometimes a little too similar to this show. It’s just so hard to tell these days. I have no aptitude for age guessing. Watching the pilot episode made me have a few traumatic real life reflective moments especially when Liza blurts out “you’re way too young for me” we pretend it doesn’t matter, and on so many levels it doesn’t, and yet it can really matter. I love this topic to explore because it is very relevant. The cascade of emotions and situations that come from it are brilliant as executed by Sutton Foster who plays Liza.

It was all too easy for me to fall into a binge situation. Lately I just wish that this would happen to me – just cruising around Williamsburg,  having a job in the related field you want to be in, radiating a younger vibe than my current age (although I perpetually feel 27 in my head) The daydream scape of New York – a place that my heart always bursts over, the ever romantic Brooklyn bridge floating with fairy lights in the background and this guy….there’s always a guy right?! I sometimes feel I haven’t evolved form my Dawson’s Creek teen days – something cheesy but hopeful that taps into that romantic headspace. I felt somewhat nostalgic watching the pilot ep.

Right… I am constantly oscillating between the first few episodes of season 1 between loving this cute and naturally unfolding thing between Liza and Josh… Josh, Josh, Josh…makes me immediately think back to Friends and the episode where Rachel develops a crush on a guy called Josh and insists on him being called Joshua…I digress. And half wondering if such a guy really exists?

He is played by Nico Tortilla – which sounds like an insatiable meal of a name or a wonderful cocktail. So he’s a tattoo artist – a wonderfully creative endeavour, he’s a dream and yes you just melt into that eye and smile. NOT AFRAID TO ROCK A FLANNELETTE. Oh and yeah he is 26 and she is 40….He is one of those guys that does what he says – where actions and words align. YIPEE – my little heart skipped a beat, at least those guys exist on a tv space if nothing else. He is a very good initiator – persistent dates and chasing and just – who kisses like that so quickly?! But I want in – I so want in on all of it – all that deliciousness! Pamela, oh Pamela Redmond Satran – and no doubt the host of beautiful femme writers on the show have crafted that perfect = and harmonious male tv character. That guy character runs rampage in a lot of females heads an awful lot, so seeing his essence on screen makes me smile. How does one extract him from TV to real life though hmmmm I wonder? This is him! This is it! This is the guy. I feel like I need to take up a civil duty of showing men everywhere that this is great behaviour – the texting, the locking in dates, the no nonsense planning. I am such a planner that this really floats my boat. Yes, please take my phone and lock in my calendar a date – swoon o rama. That there is the standard I am hoping for.  I also admire the show for challenging some stereotypes like  guys don’t make the effort and pursue women, you won’t meet anyone in NYC, everyone’s taken or gay – here we see a guy courting. Dammit I want courtship!

Ultimately a show that seems (so far) to be about reinvention. Bite size romantic comedy escapism that we need on in our television mix. It can’t all be Rick Grimes and zombies and Jon Snow situations – we must balance out the heavy with the light. This show does it ever so well by striking the right balance of some important dialogues facing women these days and judgements around age and relationships to some candy floss fantasy aspects.

Maybe it will keep me younger just by watching it and laughing 😉 one can only hope!




Glorious Gilfoyle


Firstly, could we give the wonderful female writer of the latest episode of Silicon Valley, Meghan Pleticha, just the biggest excitable clap. What a dream – and an inspiration for us female writers. Ok gush over.  Thanks to her sharp and punchy writing this episode was all time. Season 4 is really busting out some oratorical gems. It was full of the most nonsensical but apt phrases and insults. I won’t go into all of them but here’s the top lines:

Jared mentions that Gilfoyle said that he reminded him of  “Frankenstein’s bulimic daughter”

“Until we are dick-up and flat-broke, get to your life.” – Erlich

“I’ll kill them with knives, I’ll kill them with guns. I’ll kill them with my hands. I’ll convince them to commit suicide. It doesn’t matter.” – Jared’s mental break

Whilst there were many moments of comedic brilliance peppered throughout the episode, like the not hotdog app or Jared’s descent into a mental mayhem, apparent separation anxiety and extreme FOMO, it really was Gilfoyle for me that gave me the most giggles and I find his character immensely gratifying. Here’s just a little sampler of the acerbic Gilfoyle doing what he does best x

The relentless bickering between Dinesh and Gifoyle is an ongoing theme within the series. In this episode Gilfoyle delights in letting Dinesh know that he is “sexually disappointing” his current hacker girlfriend.

His comments continue to be cutting when Richard tries to explain why he’s been MIA from the hacker hostel  and Gilfoyle points out that “We all leave the house during the day, Richard. That’s not weird.”

As Richard pursues new employees for his new project, we see a disgruntled Gilfoyle hijacking the list of candidates. Upon first sighting the list he remarks ” this entire list is a shit show of shit heads” and “If Richard wants to saddle himself with mediocrity then go ahead”.  Next to a potential candidate his insights continue on the notes that Richard and Jared take into a meeting with Gavin Belson, the phrase ‘pig faced fucknose’ has been scribbled. Whilst I believe that he doesn’t really want to work for Pied Piper again, he knows he is the best fit and that his skill sets are superior.

If you haven’t watched this show you absolutely must. You may even pick up a handful of useful phrases when you fire out some insults next time.

Noteworthy Nelson


” Do you think wearing the name of the college you’re going to to class is the same thing as wearing the name of the band you’re going to to a concert?”



To some Nelson “Bighead” (Bag head) Bighetti may be an unemployable programmer in the Valley who made an app called nip alert … but to me he has the highest level of EQ out there.  I also have a soft spot for him because of his Big Gulp appreciation. Not everybody has the emotional insight or scope to ask those big life questions. It’s one of the things that irritates me the most. You’re at a Nine Inch Nails concert and half the crowd are wearing NIN T shirts… I was taught my brother who is 9 years older than me and I am an 80s baby – that is a big no no. Social suicide I believe may have been used! My general rule is wear another band t shirt that screams – “look at my other awesome musical tastes ” as well or go completely neutral (black)!

He may be vague AF or so he would have you believe…probably an Aquarian – a little eccentric, off on another planet but let’s take a look at his alleged “bumbling and stumbling”  through life. Erich nearly invested in his App over Pied Piepr,  he became a VP at Hooli and then became an accidental millionaire via redundancy, managed to appear on the cover of Wired magazine and now he is a guest lecturer at  Stanford University but thought he was going to be a student. He ain’t no fool!  Over the years we have seen a consistency with his blatant honesty ” I kinda suck” and ” I really don’t know what I am doing” – being the key theme. Maybe it is all part of his modesty tactic. Who knows! Some people would thoroughly embrace such transparency and awareness of their own flaws!

Some may question his intelligence and place within the Valley… but he had me once he was involved in the potato cannon project at Hooli. Head Co Dreamer and a man after my own heart who has anything to do with potato…this was his response to tackle Pied Piper… creating for the sake of creating and why not! You know what…maybe he is just a really, really nice guy that we can take on face value – he is what he is and you get what you see. AMEN XUntitled


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