A brunette's babble

Piperchat, prepositions and pant wetting


coderag_s4_banners_piperchat.jpgOh golly!  Here’s my nonsensical adoration rant for this show. So here is just a little slice of my takeouts I loved from this episode. You know you have watched some quality comedy when the following happen; ( and in no particular order) laughing out loud, snorting(that embarrassing laugh) , beverages consumed whilst watching the show spurting out of your nose, laughing so hard that at 35 you pee yourself a little…and realise that your light bladder control pads now need to be worn whilst watching tv and not just at adult gymnastics classes. I LOVE THIS show. I have written about it all over this blog and did my first spec script on it and it has been a constant source of hilarity. All elements of this show and amazing. Direction, acting, writing – please watch it!  I haven’t laughed so much since the episode where they annihilate and are rude to the VC’s in season 2.

It may seem trivial – but prepositions are important. This is stressed by Richard who explains to Dinesh that he once threw up IN his pants… that’s right, IN not ON. The description of this made me cry with laughter. The nightmarish manifestations of Richard’s anxiety know no limits and it is relatable to those of us who embody some of these nervous traits. The snappy comments that Richard and Dinesh fire at each other is so childishly funny…

An ongoing tScreen Shot 2017-05-01 at 9.45.37 PMheme is the continual hope of success that sticks in the valley. It is fleeting, short lived and seemingly unattainable. The episode largely focuses on Piperchat – the only workable component of Pied Piper that remains. And so ensues the rise and fall of the CEO – and whilst I won’t ruin the enjoyment of this playing out it is interesting to see similar situations that happened to Ricahrd being mirrored with Dinesh. I often wonder how many new start up CEO’s crawl into a bathtub and want to cry! (or even script writer wannabes..or anyone for that matter!)

The living room has been the stage for a lot of funny moments in the show. I will sum up another fave scene with this picture :

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A final visual. This shot is fantastic – Mike Judge is a dream director.

Masterful Madden


I won’t lie – I miss Robb Stark and you can flick through my posts about that inevitable grief.  You can imagine my delight when FINALLY Australian TV aired Medici – Masters of Florence recently.  Also, an avid lover of a good period piece, I have to fess up that my knowledge of this family from Florence was quite poor (sorry to all my history teachers and professors..but I have been to Italy…well Rome). It also didn’t receive a huge plug in any of the TV materials I indulge in…not that this has deterred me. Like anything with life, one must experience and formulate their own  opinions.

My initial thoughts are thus; watch it! I read a review from the LA times and I agree with that article -7 million Italians can’t be wrong – they devoured it! 2 episodes and I am in. The beauty of this so far is that the director, Frank Spotnitz, is aware that not everyone in the audience is a history buff and so has created a series that is relatable. It may not be on the grandest of scales but all the workable elements of setting,scenery and costume are all present.

An element that is truly enjoyable to watch for me these days since I watch so much darn television – is often how actors work together. How they blend and complement one another. I am thoroughly enjoying the dynamics of Dustin Hoffman who plays the father, Giovanni ,and his sons, Cosimo played by the insatiable Richard Madden and Lorenzo by Stuart Martin. (Yeah that’s right, he IS a voice on the video game Assassin’s Creed -nerding it up over here) Cosimo has this wonderfully, romantic, dreamy quality about him that I can’t help but collapse or swoon into.  Watching him i like sliding into a lovely bath – it just is a dream. Many can relate to your life being pulled in a direction not of your choosing…  Lorenzo the lush let’s call him – come on, Stuart Martin is a sheer delight and I look forward to the brothers and their complex relationship unfolding as the episodes continue..seriously if nothing else watch it for the brothers! YAS. Truly, Richard Madden is remarkable… in anything he does.

From a writing perspective (yup get my dork script writing hat on) I really find it fascinating to make a period piece realistic with dialogue and still be true to historical information. Y’all don’t know how challenging dialogue is unless you do the do of the writing so KUDOS – can’t find many of them on IMDB but god they need some credit and if I am just one person to give it then so be it.

Easy watching and you MAY even learn something or have the urge to research this family.

Redoubtable Richonne

UntitledFirstly, a  zombie apocalypse is no setting for a romantic romp!  Whilst I am not going to linger on the romance aspect of this episode , (maybe because I don’t really know my true feelings on the matter!)  I will address the following; I cannot be the only one who thinks of contraception challenges in this environment … perhaps condoms have been picked up on many runs for supplies who knows?? I mean if they could just be a little bit cautious…being pregnant and babies who need protecting in such a a hostile environment doesn’t instil me with happy endings.  Really this train of thought comes from a very selfish view of not wanting anything to compromise the killing machine duo that is             “ Richonne” and sure, seeing Rick in love and happy perturbs many female viewers . I am not immune to this.I am only human after all. Rick can’t be distracted – it won’t work otherwise. He cannot waiver.  If you can have sex  and even a meaningful relationship whilst trying to save human existence in such an environment then what do us mortals in everyday waking life have to complain about when it comes to relationships!!?! I have written about his brute force and  a warrior archetype that Rick embodies many times. I am enjoying the additional strength of a female by his side. You know that they would be the people at school appointed as captain for all sporting events and you would always be hoping you ended up on their team. Panic rises in me when those two are not with the rest of the group.  Remember in The Matrix how Neo finally understand he is the one and just he comes this amazing force to be reckoned with? I feel this translates to these two – they know it and believe it so much so that they are able to joke about their kills and plans that may go awry and make light of their carnival clear out.

Emerging from this episode was just how much Rick means to Michonne and perhaps how dependent she is on him. It goes beyond a reliance and a softer side has been seen. If something happens to Rick it questions whether Michonne could carry the group and keep leading. Love a flaw set up!  Once we know what a character values we know the impact it has if there is a threat of that being taken away. I often found myself wondering whether Rick’s reason or wanting to stay out just a little longer was to  extend the intimate bubble just a bit longer. Something that nourishes their soul. Everybody needs love – with such loss it seems like Rick craves this time for many reasons. It’s never ideal or the right time to be making out or have intimacy when you are looking after a group. Even leaders need love i hear you say! Love could be what forces these two to keep going, to have a reason – it’s the hope or the flicker of it.

Love is all you need…even in a zombie apocalypse

Marnie’s Meltdown

Untitled.pngOh, Marnie. My heart just burst with/for you during that episode. No doubt others globally were empathising with that meltdown.  And what an important one to have.  Am I right? Sometimes you have to go there…yikes , and haven’t we been there in one way or another …at least once. What’s growing up without a little detour to all those places and parts we don’t like.?! That’s what I love about Girls and always have.  Say what you will about the show and Lena Denham – you won’t get any negativity here. It’s so authentic to its characters and the situations they go through or are presented with. There is an element surrounding all the  cringe worthy moments that exudes a very raw and honest truth.  I think it’s important to get to the place where Marnie was – be it collapsed on the floor after a weird weekend getaway turned hostage situation in Poughkeepsie or folded up on your bed or breaking down in the shopping center, or work or anywhere really– it happens and when it does it’s spectacularly intense. That instant surge of emotion bursting uncontrollably out in all the most  unattractive ways.  Everyone has their breaking point followed by the clarity of “ I can’t do this anymore and a change needs to happen” . We do some strange things in the weirdness of space and time that is a relationship split or separation.

And then we calm the crazy.

Picking herself back off the floor, one foot forward, we have to keep moving, the show must go on.  Hooray to some of the girls having some self awareness if only a shred. The entire journey to this last season has seen the character arcs grow and expand and not necessarily how we want – but it’s their path not that of the audience. Hannah summises this best by her saying  “It can be pretty hard to have observations about other people when you’re only thinking about yourself,”.

The revelation of the truth for Marnie (and even Desai about his oxy addiction) is such a necessary and powerful step. Through the myriad of emotions there comes a time when the fog finally lifts and  it’s time to sit with it. The painful experience of feeling it all, digesting, dissecting and then repairing or as I like to call it a “re glue” instead of a redo. Time to disentangle yourself Marnie and start the upward climb (and sometimes stumble)  into all the awesome that is you. I can’t wait to see where the journey takes her.  Perhaps the most important takeaway is the support of those who help you get out of this hole. As the song goes… “I get by with a little help from my friends. ” x

Paving The Path-way

downloadI’ve come up from air after my travels abroad and absolutely needed to discuss in a haphazard manner,  the Hulu/Amazon show  –  “The Path” .  It’s quite poor on my part to have left it so late in the game to watch this, but being the dedicated and somewhat accomplished binge watcher that I am, I managed to polish off season one in a weekend. It was on my TV spreadsheet and obviously grabbed my attention with the likes of this cast –  Hugh Dancy, Aaron Paul (just think about that combination for a minute … Will Graham and Jesse Pinkman… are you vibing on that dream combo? )  and the beautiful and powerful force that is Michelle Monaghan. More importantly or perhaps MOST importantly, it was created by Jessica Goldberg (Yay, female) whose writing inspires me. (Refuge, Parenthood to name a few) A quiet, yet powerful force who writes/creates thought provoking scripts, often forcing us to examine human behaviour when tested and the intricacies of relationships. She, and many other talented females in the industry (Meryl Streep this week at the Globes anyone????! ), give me the additional boost I need when I start to wavier with my writing dreams. If you haven’t seen it yet, The Path is about followers of a religious group known as the Meyerist Movement. Jessica, to me is one of the females in the industry paving the pathway for fellow female wannabe writers like myself to look up to and take the lead from.  Instead of an “ authentic voice” that everyone prattles on about – I prefer her unique vision, persistence and the ability to back herself. Give me a much needed healthy dose of that !

The characters are written in such a masterful manner which is brought to life by the accuracy of casting. Their interactions and complicated behaviours make for high stake and impactful drama. The central premise of the movement is the act of “unburdening” themselves and by doing so they can find the “light.” It is how each character responds and engages to this movement that hooks its audience .

We have the charismatic and ever persuasive  Cal Roberts (Dancy) the leader of the movement.  Eddie and Sarah Lane, a couple who have underlying issues  that unfold slowly. I find that  what is not said is particularly powerful between these two characters. We have so many flawed characters in a setting where they are meant to behave in a certain way that is of moral standing. Perhaps I haven’t seen a show in recent times that explores the topics of faith and the devotion of your practice in a modern presentation. We are  exposed to both views – those within the movement and those who are outsiders or skeptics.  It is through the device of clever and well plotted character arcs that we are able to examine these topics – to perhaps be reflective and introspective about our own belief systems and how we engage or interact with this in our own lives or how we perceive others who do so.

Whilst viewing it I am constantly changing my opionions and  I love it! Part of me wants to believe in Cal whole heartedly. Believe his intentions, his forthrightness, his vision.  Fall to my knees and do as he says without question (it is Hugh Dancy after all). Part of me wants to see that darkness be antagonised and watch it manifest and seep out.  I have a few more episodes to go until i finish season one and then I can get stuck into season two. I find most episodes quite jarring in a good way. There are layers upon layers but I love how it is all coming together. I look forward to seeing how the characters unfold and handle the impending situations challenge them. It is deliberately slow and delicious and I cannot wait for season two!


Splendid San Junipero


Black Mirror Spoilers

Ever wake up and think you want to escape to somewhere like you know, San Junipero?! Yes…that’s the first thought I had upon waking today.

Thanks to the latest season of Black Mirror, I can’t stop daydreaming into that landscape and world that is the party town and endless dance floor of San Junipero.

I realise that on one level that may sound particularly morbid inferring  the obvious but truly I just want a large dose of escapism for a while where I can drink diet coke in glass bottles (the only and best way to drink it) dance around to nostalgic  80s tunes, play by the ocean and have a whirlwind, passionate romance.

It really resonated with me. Isn’t that what good TV is? When it stays with you, has meaning, taps into a memory and lingers so that you visit that pocket of the show. I must have watched the ending credits 20 times. I tear up every time I watch it and question the notions of happiness and contentment, love and the technology that disturbingly caters for it at the tucker institute.

Maybe I am beyond disillusioned, maybe I am a hopeless romantic or just hopeful… maybe the theme of love really being all that matters was touching some vulnerable spots in me. Well it worked!

Aside from the killer soundtrack and the visuals being so heavily drenched in all things 80s, the writing is great – leaving gaps and keeping dialogue vague to to let the story unfold. I loved this – allowing the audience focus more on what matters – their relationship. It also seemed a refreshing episode suggesting that not all technological endeavours in the future are negative or to be feared. I also think  this episode could be used for a pro euthanasia argument  – allowing people to make decisions and  be empowered , whilst using the metaphor of going to a better place like San Junipero – it could be replaced with any other version of their “ happy place” .

I have read and heard a lot of speculation about Kelly and Yorkie and whether or not they drive off into the sunset and get their perfect ending – I suppose it doesn’t matter. Whatever loop they are in within their consciousness has them together with a complete sense of joy rapture and togetherness.

The song choice couldn’t be better for the closing credit sequence. “ Do you know what that’s worth”  – the value of life, death, choices and chasing the desire to be happy with the time we have.

If anything, Heaven indeed is a place on earth and it is located in big corporate server room at TCKR systems !





Rankled Robert

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After The Walking Dead recap marathon ( why oh why did I think I needed to rewatch all those emotionally traumatic episodes before tomorrow?!) I needed some viewing that wasn’t going to give me a frozen shoulder so popped on Ep 2 of Divorce.

Now, there’s a lot of things I could talk about in regards to this show. The SJP buzz for starters and her return to HBO / TV. I could fan girl out so hard about this. Then there’s one of my female writing idols Sharon Horgan – creator and writer of this show  amongst many other hilarious ones – like the wonderful pant wetting (yes, really) show Catastrophe.

I wanted to focus on Thomas Haden Church and his brilliant pettiness and character portrayal of Robert in this episode. As a Ned and Stacy fan, I was looking forward to him playing a more comedic role once again and he certainly did not disappoint. I was chortling throughout the episode.

Rejection and hurt manifests itself in a myriad of ways. Some reactions make no sense whatsoever and see us teetering around the border of crazy town. Robert is deeply wounded and has gone into complete shut down man cave mode. He resorts to being a child and this is demonstrated in his actions the entire episode  – locking her out of the house, putting her purse and keys in the trash, pretending he can’t hear her, not being able or willing to talk. You can’t blame him for processing and avoiding the enormity of the situation. The period between hearing life changing information and finally  processing it is a strange place to find yourself. This episode gives us insight into exactly where Robert’s headspace is at. The poor guy has been blindsided and is reacting not responding at this stage.

The hilarity comes from his childish behaviour where he is being beyond difficult and clearly not ready to talk about any of this nightmare yet. Frances finally gets inside the house and enters the bathroom to which Robert says “What if I’d been shitting?” to which so responds that he never has done ‘that’ in the morning. Perhaps it is the way he delivers the lines – so matter of factly that you can’t help chuckle. His mannerism and tone adds to the brilliant writing of this episode.

Not being married and therefore not experiencing divorce, I can still relate to the painful navigation of awkwardness that ensues after a relationship breakdown. Whilst it such a personal  event, I think a lot of people will be able to relate to this show – the tip toeing and creative lying to protect the children, the range of emotional responses and the challenging road to to communicating and working together to either get past it or end it.

Definitely worth watching – it’s a great balance of dealing with the sensitive nature of divorce whilst exaggerating the ridiculousness of it all in our coping mechanisms. I look forward to seeing where Robert and Frances end up.

The Wrong Girl is the Right TV Drama


It’s been heedless of me to not talk about our own home grown Australian Drama on my blog.  The landscape is very different here with limited networks so we don’t have the volume to comment on and since we are only a few eps in I won’t prattle on too long. I thought I would take just a quick moment to acknowledge this show and perhaps persuade you to tune into it – you will be pleasantly surprised.

For me, there hasn’t been an Aussie drama as good as The Secret Life Of Us in forevererer. Yes, I loved Offspring, Tangled etc but they weren’t Evan and Alex …sigh! You can imagine that when I knew Judi McCrossin (chief writer of the Secret Life Of Us) was adapting the book – The Wrong Girl I got somewhat excitable.

To bring you up to speed  the show focuses on Lily Woodward, a producer on a morning television show. She is the everyday girl that we can all relate to as she tries to navigate this thing called life She is someone a lot of us can relate to and this is key – the commonality of the themes explored seem to be resonating with audiences as we are now a few episodes in.

A show of hands if any of these topics resonate with you …!?!!

1)Working in a job that you don’t love but because it is in the industry you want to be a part  you hang in there in the hopes it could lead to other things

2) What about being a young woman and not having it figured out – not being married or in a relationship – but you are watching every one around you getting houses, babies – all those adult like behaviours that for you, seem out there on the horizon…somewhere

3)  Navigating the people at work and the many personalities, politics and demands that come with that.

4) Men. Say no more! Not just any men – one you work with and your best male mate… and a stirring of romantic feelings in you for both of them.

Much credit is to be given to Jessica Marais who captures the endearing traits of sensibility and chaos in her performance as Lily. (As a side note doesn’t she wear some great nail colours too! ) Enter the  quirky flat mate Simone, played by Hayley Magnus who embodies that one friends we all have who is a little offbeat. Then the dreamboat Pete (Ian Meadows), Lily’s best male friend. Let’s be honest –  I am invested in their undercurrent of love and hope the story arc sees them realise their love for each other….that would be the right outcome…for me… but I guess the clue is in the title.

The writing is spot on and I am enjoying the pace and flow of it so YAY to the writing team – this makes me happy and hopeful and dare I say it…inspired to keep writing locally.

I look forward to watching her juggle friendships, conflicts and most of all her man issues!

Go on, give it a watch and embrace Australian TV!

“I’m not your adventure”



Perhaps the most powerful words on TV this year. (….no surprises it’s from Transparent.)

I was feeling a bit annoyed after watching the second presidential debate and having Trump’s comments of   “they’re just words”  looping through my head. I have always struggled when people dismiss words and stress that actions are more important.  As a lover of languages, writing and story telling, words certainly carry immense weight and watching this episode cemented that for me once again.

It cut right through me. I was crying well before I was aware of it.

After the episode I just laid on my bed having a little cry. 34 but feeling about 13.  Not entirely sure why the onset of tears was happening, but obviously some grief was erupting. Maybe it was extreme empathy for Shea, trying to, but never quite going to be able to understand her trans/formation and journey, a sadness for the behaviours that Josh displays and his inability to be aware or change them, loneliness and essentially those words convey a dejected, used feeling. UGH.

I have been studying a lot this year in script writing. There are so many rules and formulas and “Hollywood standards” – and once (hopefully) I can grasp that I hope to just push those boundaries like Transparent. I like all those who don’t quite follow those said rules – Tarantino, Lynch, Sorkin….. but what I like is what they have to say and how they have to say it. I loved Jill Soloway’s Emmy speech this year where she said this about story –

When you take women, people of colour, trans people, queer people, and you put them at the center of the story, the subjects instead of the objects, you change the world, we found out. We found out!

The importance of dialogue was a fascinating topic during my course.

I want to move people and tell those stories. That’s why I love TV that’s why I want to write. Emotional resonance is powerful. I woke up this morning with a renewed vigor to write and create. Tell those stories, share those voices, move people, start a dialogue, a conversation and then watch it grow to help communities, politics…. This show is the catalyst for so many wonderful things and I hope its positive momentum continues.

Let’s talk about the exceptional Trace Lysette.

In a childlike moment, running through an abandoned water park and sharing an intimate moment, she finally feels it’s safe to share with Josh that she is HIV positive. I love that this show is able to have very real conversations – sure, Josh is a bit rattled, it’s new information and processing it all is quite full on. Some stigma around it and misconceptions by him – sure. The line by Josh where he asks  “ can we hit pause…can I be a bit weird about it”  he is digesting this information. The essence of the scene is the complete disconnect between them. He says its cool but it’s evidently not cool at all and Shea reacts with extreme and justifiable hurt. It diminishes their relationship or interaction within seconds.

Raw emotion will get me every time. The audience can tell when it’s sincere  and they believe what they are saying.  Trace Lysette delivers that whole scene and especially that line of “ I’m not your fucking adventure”  from way down in the depths of her being. It destroyed me. All of the hurt, pain, frustration, hope – packaged and delivered in one perfectly executed and written line. From this I wanted to know more – more about this person and her real life journey.

What a fantastic human being – I would read this article about her which details her personal connection to the character.  I love this show for so many reasons –it  is educating me, along with others, about this very important and relevant topic , allowing these human lights to shine brightly rather than hide away and have their sparkle dulled. Love, create, play, show compassion, understand, have patience, be tolerant, acceptance  – all the good things.  I have enough trouble trying to get my formatting right in my scripts – a long way to go before I can create such impact dialogue and characters – but this makes my heart full and burst with positivity and hope.

I also love that she is real with Josh. No one really calls him out on his emotional immaturity and lack of accountability. She blasts him calling him a fucking child. A really great underlying comment on Josh’s character – when will he take ownership for who he is and his actions?! There is some redemption for Josh as he drops Shea at the airport he says “ Sorry… I don’t know what I’m doing” – ARGH I really want his character to find himself..anyway….god Jay Duplass is just phenomenal in general…sidetracking…

Love over fear…always. Please. It’s the only way we will ascend x

Thank you transparent team x
(and especially this group of inspiring writers… sorry this is all I could find from researching…)

Arabella Anderson ,Bridget Bedard, Micah Fitzerman-Blue.,Noah Harpster,Jessi Klein., Stephanie Kornick Ethan Kuperberg, Ali Liebegott , Our Lady J ,Faith Soloway , Jill Soloway.

season 3 trailer xxx

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