Thursday, June 28, 2007

Capsule Review Day

There are no major spoilers in these reviews.

The 4400 Season 3:
The third season of this show was just as strong as the first two, and showed a definitely overarching storyline that makes me excited for the fourth season. The only misstep was the returning character of Isabelle. Whether it was the part or the actress, she was annoying in the beginning and stupidly-evil in the end (à la Melissa George's eyebrows in Alias). One of the things I really like about this series is that each season is only twelve or thirteen episodes long, so something important happens in every episode (unlike the LOST episodes, "Jack gets a tattoo" and "Hurley drives a van"). Disc Two had some permanent blemishes that made about four minutes of the episodes freeze, but I got the gist of the scenes through subtitles anyhow.

Final Grade: A-

Knocked Up:
Very funny but overhyped, and my patented BUtt system for measuring a movie's length by how tired I get of sitting around said the movie was about ten minutes too long. The shock-humour is more effective than the romantic angle, especially since weeks of movie-world time seem to pass without mention. For example, it's a little jarring when the main characters say they're in love after only a single "courting/bonding" scene, but then you realize that three or four months have passed. At least throw a montage in! Definitely worth a rental.

Final Grade: B

Scrubs, Season 5:
This is easily the weakest of the five seasons I've watched, but it's still on more than it's off. I burned through the entire season in about three days since each episode is only about 18 minutes long. To an extent, it felt like the writers were running low on ideas -- just when I was feeling like the episodes were nothing but slight rewrites of older ideas, there was actually a self-deprecating episode which showed that everything was merely a repeat of earlier seasons.

Final Grade: A-

Thank You for Smoking:
A quick-and-fun satire about a lobbyist trying to spin cigarettes to be a good thing. Funny while it lasted and over before it dragged or hurt my butt.

Final Grade: B+

Sandisk Titanium Cruzer USB Flash Drive:
This handy little flash drive is roughly the size of a Tallahassee cockroach and has a 2 GB capacity. It plugs into any computer without needing to install drivers, and transfers files about as fast as a regular hard drive. After a coupon rebate, I got it for $30 at Costco, and it's been well worth the money. It even survived a trip through the washing machine and worked perfectly after I let it air dry for a day. Burning CDs or using ZIP Disks are a thing of the past.

Final Grade: A+

Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords:
I purchased this game in April and was initially addicted to it by its simplicity, varied game styles, and incredibly long single player campaign. Two months later, the incredibly long single player campaign is still going and I'm bored. The game is enjoyable for a while, but when the leveling system maxes out at Level 50 and you're still only halfway through the game, it starts to get old (especially when some monsters respawn to block previously-travelled paths around the game board). There are certain combinations of gems and crafted items that make it very easy to win most battles, so the last half of the game lacks any sort of real challenge.

Final Grade: B-

Take my census by June 30, and win a five-dollar gift certificate!

The effects of cocaine on corn
India rattled by vibrating condom
Deep discounts on plasma TVs

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