H.G. Wells is a woman? – Warehouse 13

Warehouse 13 - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

Warehouse 13 – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

Warehouse 13 (2009-)

Creators: Jane Espenson, D. Brent Mote
Stars: Eddie McClintock, Joanne Kelly and Saul Rubinek

You may have noticed, if you have been reading my previous blogs, that I like a little bit of crime thriller/sci-fi action. This is true whether in film or TV. I think it’s because I wish I had a more exciting life and I like escaping into another kind of world and kind of thinking. Warehouse 13 caught my eye simply because it is made by the SyFy channel. It’s your average investigative agency trying to save the world kind of deal, but with a bit of a twist. It takes the myths and legends of history and takes the museum pieces we like to ooh and aah at and turns them into deadly weapons, or something like that. “Artifacts” possess a semi-magical/semi-scientific aspect that comes from the great event or person they were originally attached to. For instance, a hairbrush used by Marilyn Munroe turns people’s hair blonde. Okay so that one is less deadly than just a bit weird and strange, but the agents in Warehouse 13 track down these artifacts, neutralize them, and then pack them away so no one can use them for evil. You get the idea I hope.

I’ve only watched the first two seasons so far and I’ve enjoyed them for the most part. It’s not a serious or completely dramatic sci-fi show, it has it’s humourous moments. The characters are interesting and have complex pasts which makes them carry enough weight for me to continue to watch to find out where they end up. The stories can be a little far-fetched but then again it is science fiction, not everything is meant to be completely realistic. I find it hard to review because there is a level at which I really like the show, but there is also a level at which I think it could be so much better than it is. The cheesiness of some of the humour is a little unbearable at points but it does fit with the characters so maybe it’s the characters who need improving? Or maybe it’s that the scripts aren’t written well enough for the characters to be brought to life and be coherent with the humour? Or maybe it’s the direction of particular episodes? Or maybe it’s the fact that they try and bring H.G. Wells to life as a woman? I don’t know exactly what it is but there are bits and pieces that leave me a little disappointed with it.

Even saying that though I will get stuck into the third and fourth season as soon as I can get my hands on them. For nothing other than the character of Claudia Donovan who I love and I wish I was like.

3/5

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The Truth At All Cost – Lie To Me

Lie To Me - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

Lie To Me – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

Lie To Me (2009)

Creator: Samuel Baum
Stars: Tim Roth, Kelli Williams and Brendan Hines

“The truth shall set you free.” It’s a beautiful thought and yet we have a tendency as humans to want to cover up and lie to protect ourselves. And in some moments it may be appropriate. But for the most part there is nothing good that comes from lying. Guilt, regret, hurt, pain, and loss are always knocking at the door as soon as that little lie escapes our lips. Most comedy of errors starts with a little lie to cover up a simple mistake and then the rest is trying to keep that lie a secret. Is it ever worth it in the end?

Lie To Me starts with the premise that we can tell whether someone is lying or not simply by observing their facial expressions and body language. Behavioural science is the key to unlocking the truth and solving the crimes in this crime/mystery/drama show. And it is this key that unlocks the intrigue of the audience. We are constantly asking ourselves “but how did he know?!” and then gently they reveal to us the science behind the mystery. The reveal is gradual but intriguing which makes this show just like any other crime drama, but it has an edge: Tim Roth.

Tim Roth makes this show continually entertaining and intriguing. His character of Cal Lightman is a beautiful balance of bastard and truth-seeker. He is charismatic and charming but also cruel and pushes the boundaries of people’s emotions and breaks them down to the vulnerable squishy-squirmy liars they truly are. You spend a great deal of the time watching Roth and trying to work out, like his colleagues, whether to love him or hate him. Over the three seasons so far I have come to admire the character and his unfailing search for the truth, not just the culprit of the crime he’s been hired to find.

Lie To Me is a different kind of crime show but follows the same formula, a formula that works. The characters are complex, intriguing, and people who I would like to know in real life. Their journey together through the work is what keeps me coming back for more. I really wish it hadn’t been cancelled last year but alas I must lose some more of my favourite TV characters. It’s really worth the watch and the show gets better and better over the seasons.

3.5/5

Competition is Cruel – Party Animals

Party Animals - Poster

Party Animals – Poster

Party Animals (2007)

Creators: Robert Jones, Ben Richards
Stars: Andrew Buchan, Shelley Conn, Andrea Riseborough and Matt Smith

There is something wonderfully foreign yet altogether too familiar about seeing the behind the scenes of political parties. I mean we kind of see it on the news every night. Someone has offended someone else which then makes their policy look better and so on and so forth. And with the familiarity of most of the western world with The West Wing and it’s glorious success, there wasn’t really much going for Party Animals. But I didn’t really know anything about it going into it. All I knew was that it had Matt Smith in it before he went and became the eleventh Doctor on Doctor Who.

Party Animals is a British TV show that ran for only 8 episodes. With it’s main characters based in politics it has a West Wing-esque feel but with a British swing. With main characters Scott Foster (Andrew Buchan), lobbyist, his brother Danny (Matt Smith), researcher for a Labor MP, and Ashika Chandirimani (Shelley Conn) the head researcher for the Tory MP opposition to Danny. Their story intertwines in real and dramatic ways as they all go up against one another professionally whilst trying to work out how to succeed in work and love. With big themes of friendship, loyalty, politics, love and grief, it has a dramatic core with an ever-shifting outer coating of political intrigue and romance. Each character throughout the season is faced with heavy moral and ethical questions which provides us viewers with a real insight into what politicians and lobbyists must have to deal with to be successful.

I really enjoyed the series and was left with a hole in heart for the characters. All the actors are brilliant in their portrayal of their characters and the production of the series is done with a British grittiness and lightness that reminds me of Skins and Spooks. It is both enjoyable and painful to watch as it brings the characters lives alive on your screen. You really end up caring deeply for Scott and Danny’s relationship and the future of Ashika as she deals with the fall out of her life choices and losses. It throws into light the darkness of high powered and pressured occupations and how they take their toll on everyone differently.

I really recommend getting your hands on this brilliant yet short series. It’ll give you a new perspective on politics and the difficulties that come with the job of all involved, especially the women.

And now for something a little bit different – QI

QI - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

QI – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

QI (2003-)

Stars: Stephen Fry and Alan Davies

There are few shows that I can watch by myself and find myself laughing out loud. QI is one of those rare shows that never fails to be both freaking hilarious and informative. I am constantly amazed at how much I find myself giggling as I sit on my bed watching it on my laptop. There is something wonderful about comedians revealing their intelligence and the way their wonderful minds work. Of course then you realise the reason they are such good comedians is because they do know quite a bit about the world and thus can find what is truly funny about it.

QI, which stands for Quite Interesting, is a “game show” for the intellectuals. It is comprised of questions relating to all different aspects of the world. From Astonomy to the Immortal Bard to Zoology and Agriculture. It covers a myriad of ideas and facts and corrects the general ignorance of the world one episode at a time. Along with these weird and wonderful facts there is the weird and wonderful guests that grace the desk of QI with Stephen Fry and Alan Davies every week. They are mostly British comedians with a few extras thrown in for good measure. They compete for you knows the most interesting things and who is least taken by the myths that are spread by the general public.

My favourite thing by far about this show is Alan Davies. He is the representative of the world on QI. And as much as Stephen Fry would like to prove him to be an idiot, I think he is the one who shows the most humility and hilarity. He represents the public and helps us to know that we aren’t just all stupid, but simply ill-informed.

If you haven’t seen QI I would really recommend it. It is a fun show and you will giggle and learn at the same time, what could be bad about that!?

Why Rory Williams Is My Hero – Doctor Who

Doctor Who - Series 6 Poster - from IMDB.com

Doctor Who – Series 6 Poster – from IMDB.com

Doctor Who (oh since forever…jokes, 2005+)

Series Writer: Steven Moffat and a bunch of his friends.
Stars: Matt Smith, Karen Gillian, Arthur Darvill and everybody who has ever acted in Britain basically.

It is not always the case that a secondary character can transform everything you think about a show. It was one line, it was in a normal episode but it changed the way I forever thought about Doctor Who. Rory Williams told the Doctor “You don’t know how dangerous you make people to themselves when you’re around.” From that moment on Rory Williams stole my heart and became my favourite Doctor Who character of all time. He trumps Amy Pond who is fabulously feisty and he trumps River Song who is the woman I wish I could be, and he trumps Donna Noble who proved herself to be so normal and yet so spectacularly special (I’m just gonna skip over Rose Tyler and Martha Jones). Rory tells it like it is. He is the male companion the Doctor never wanted but who he comes to treasure as a moral and ethical compass.

For a long time I watched Doctor Who for the adventures, for the friendship of the characters, and for the Doctor’s extravagance and wonderful charisma. It is a show that has been able to hold captive audiences for multiple generations and made the transition from black and white television to colour to HD and lived on. The production value may have gone up but the heart of the show remains the same. It is, at it’s core, a show about the wonder of humanity. For me, Rory embodies this as the character who is humanity at its best and most noble.

Doctor Who has for a long time been my favourite show. From the moment it was reincarnated by Russell T. Davis in 2005 to today and the imminent arrival of Season 7 on our silver screens, I have been in love with the Doctor. When Steven Moffat took over writing in 2009 after having written some of the best episodes in previous seasons, including my favourites “Blink” and “Silence in the Library”/”Forest of the Dead”, I was overjoyed. I have loved Moffat’s writing since a kid, even though I hadn’t connected the dots until he started on Doctor Who – this included his teen drama “Press Gang” which I have vivid memories of as a child. I’ve already written about my love of Moffat (see my Sherlock review here) but it has to be said that Steven Moffat and Matt Smith’s teaming have brought Doctor Who to a new level of awesome. It’s a darker and more philosophical show when Moffat writes and collaborates with people and it provides a deeper level of intrigue than usual. There are so many moments whilst watching Doctor Who when I find myself thinking about the meanings of life and what it means to be a human. This isn’t necessarily the case in every episode but the more I watch the more I find the multifaceted nature of Moffat’s story lines and scripts. The way he weaves story lines together across multiple seasons is extraordinary and I am constantly awed by his genius.

Arthur Darvill as Rory in Doctor Who - Let's Kill Hitler - from Tumblr

Arthur Darvill as Rory in Doctor Who – Let’s Kill Hitler – from Tumblr – myvintagelove

Getting back to my love of Rory though… Rory Williams is a character that is centred on love, loyalty, courage, and honesty. This is all buffered by an underlying insecurity which is truly endearing and really grounds those characteristics in a truthful portrayal by Arthur Darvill. Darvill’s performance as Rory is practically perfect because he balances the insanity of the Doctor and Amy Pond (Karen Gillian) with a warmness and gentle strength. It is the combination of all his courage and cowardice that makes him a true companion and my hero of television. He is who I would want to be if I was with the Doctor, both petrified and cynical but ultimately triumphant in the moment of need. He is someone that seems realistic rather than being carried away with the charisma of the Doctor, and provides the grounding that the Doctor needs when off on adventures and traveling in the TARDIS. Rory is my hero because he is the one companion who is not afraid of leaving the Doctor but who is loyal to a fault to his friends. Rory always seems on the outer with Amy and the Doctor but it is Rory who will always be there for both of them when night falls on their tale.

With the new trailer having just been released for Part 1 of Season 7 I am both excited and sad to see the end of the Pond’s. I think they have been great companions and I don’t think that will ever change, but I know I will weep for a week when the curtain is drawn on their adventures with the Doctor. Moffat will make it as painful as possible, this we know, but I also think it’s going to be a good ending to a wonderful period of the show.

P.S. I know most people think River Song gets her sassiness from Amy but I really think she gets it from Rory, he is the truly bold and brave one.

P.P.S You can watch the new Doctor Who series trailer here:
Doctor Who: Full Length New Series Trailer Autumn 2012 – Series 7 – BBC One

The Literary Genre of TV Land – Wallander

Wallander - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

Wallander – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

Wallander (2008, 2010)

Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Sarah Smart and Richard McCabe
Series Writing credits: Richard Cottan (6 episodes, 2008-2010), Henning Mankell (6 episodes, 2008-2010), Peter Harness (3 episodes, 2012). Based on Henry Mankell’s novels.

I love my crime thriller TV shows more than most. There is something that compels me to watch them. From my adolescent times I loved CSI and for a while wanted to be a forensic scientist, then I discovered I hated chemistry and because that was a major component of being a forensic scientist I decided it wasn’t for me. The investigation and the intrigue that comes with crime shows is something I love because it is narrative driven. However when it comes to a show like Wallander there is something primarily different about it. The pace, the setting, the characters, the stories, and the audience it attracts is very different from your usual CSI, NCIS, and Law&Order audience members. It is much more character driven than other crime shows and it is for this reason that it has become a new favourite for me. That and Tom Hiddleston is in it. He is the reason I started watching it. I may be a little obsessed but don’t let that bias my opinion of the show because disappointedly he is only a minor character in the show and so it isn’t the reason I kept watching.

This show follows the man Wallander (Kenneth Branagh) as he is confronted with the harsh reality of murder and the emotional damage that being around crime can have on a detective. It shows a different aspect of a detective as he continues to investigate these murders, it shows the character’s moral dilemma and the weight that is placed on the detectives as they try and make sense of the irrationality of murder. Kenneth Branagh’s portrayal of Kurt Wallander is full of theatrical depth that you expect from a thespian of his caliber but the most interesting this about this casting is that his performance is almost entirely held in his expressions. Wallander is a man of few words, he is closed off, cold, and tormented by his vocation and Branagh is able to convey the complexity of this character in a single eye flicker or the way he holds his body as he approaches a crime scene. Wallander is a man that is confronted with the most horrific of human behaviours and struggles to deal with the trauma of these circumstances. Branagh grabs you and takes you with him as he explores the world of Wallander and pulls you in as he becomes more emotionally and mentally drained by these cases.

The pace of this show is one of the surprising things I found in watching it. It is slow and quiet. The atmosphere is dense and weighty and it feels all encompassing as you sit and watch these characters and stories unfold. It is definitely not a style that most people would enjoy and I would compare it to a popular fiction reader attempting to read literary fiction for the first time. It is heavy going and it does take a while to get into it. There are particular moments in each episode where if I hadn’t felt compelled to find Tom Hiddleston in the first episode that I may have switched off, but once you meet Kurt Wallander and get to know him a little bit more you can’t help but keep watching. The stories are particularly dark and complex but also truly intriguing. I have really fell in love with the characters in Wallander and the stories that connect them together. It shows the real pace of investigation and the humanity that lies behind both the criminal acts and the justice provided, as well the haunting of those detectives who are faced with the horrific. It is moving and beautiful at the same time and I have felt connected to these characters more than I usually do in tv shows. They feel real, they feel like they could be out there in the world, they feel true. It is a look at the darkness that underpins the evil in this world and the grief that is carried through the acts of violence that police have to deal with. This is a beautiful and tragic look at investigation of crime.

Oh to be a geek! – The Guild

The Guild - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

The Guild – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

The Guild (2007)

Creator: Felicia Day
Stars: Sandeep Parikh, Felicia Day and Jeff Lewis
Website: http://watchtheguild.com/

Web series are a powerful medium that have been growing in popularity over the last few years. With the power of Youtube and advertisement support to gain income from them, they are also becoming a viable way of producing a show. It gives you a wider audience with the blessing of not having to deal with networks and the fight for airtime on television. There have been some really successful web series, such as Dr Horrible’s Sing-a-long Blog, and from what I’ve seen most are directed towards those who love the internet and the medium of both blogging and online videos.

The Guild is the brain child of the gorgeous geek and actress Felicia Day. The series is based on a group of gamers who play a role-playing game called “The Game” online. They form a small group of individuals who work together in the game, or a guild. It is the story of how they meet and become IRL friends. For the main character, Codex (Felicia Day), the game is her main social interaction and has become the centre of her world, so much so that she sought a therapist for her addiction and then her therapist dumped her because she wasn’t willing to cut down on how much she played the game.

The show is quirky and reveals the good and bad of online games, especially those that demand hours of play time. However it is done in such a stereotypical way that both judges the gamer and their critics. It is this element that I love about the show. It is a hilarious look at online gamers and their world and is clever and entertaining.

The form of web series means it is light hearted entertainment but it also means that the attachment to the characters can be developed every week through the series. You really get to know the different characters in the guild and you discover what each of them brings to the group in their own special way. I love this form of story telling because it creates it’s own reality. It is a true situation comedy, these could be real people sharing their vlogs on Youtube. That is the wonderful thing about it.

Felicia Day is a fantastic comedic actor and really brings her own unique and inspired look into online gaming into this show. The genuine nature and honesty of it reveals a deep love for the gaming world as well as a wonderful sense of humour about the diversity of the people who play. I love all the characters, even Clara, and I really can’t wait until the next season starts airing online.

A little bit of screaming goes a long way – Supernatural

Supernatural - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

Supernatural – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

Supernatural (2005)

Creator: Eric Kripke
Stars: Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles and Jim Beaver

Tumblr is a blogging site that operates mostly in pictures and the support of memes and fandoms. If all of that didn’t make sense to you don’t worry, I will get to the review shortly (or just skip to the next paragraph if you like). I follow a lot of different blogs on Tumblr, most of which have similar interests to me. Most of those blogs are about Doctor Who, Firefly, Avengers, Merlin, or other bits and pieces I’ve followed along the way. A few months ago a lot of gifs and pics started popping up on my dashboard that featured Supernatural. I was initially put off by the show because of its darkness and violence. I decided to give the show ago because I thought that if many of the people who like similar shows to me like it then I might enjoy it after all.

Supernatural is centred around two brothers and their search for the father. The family business is “hunting” but instead of hunting animals they hunt the supernatural. From ghosts and changelings, demons and hellhounds, if it is hurting people they will hunt it down and kill it. Charming, right? Well I didn’t think so either. But Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles are so damn cute! They provide the entertainment with this show. It took me two and a half seasons to stop thinking of Jared Padalecki as Dean from Gilmore Girls and to reconfigure my mind to remember that he is actually called Sam in Supernatural, that would be Jensen Ackles’ character. After that little mind hurdle the show provides some interesting and entertaining story lines, but the main reason to keep watching is just for the eye candy.

The show is dark and scary. It’s balanced with some humour and banter, but when you have a ear piercing squeal and violins playing spooky music in the background it can be incredibly intense to watch. I’m not easily scared, that is, I can handle most violence, although I don’t like gore much, but when someone squeals you just can’t help but jump. I find Supernatural really interesting because it deals with subject matter that is highly mythical and fantastical. This provides both a new way of thinking about the world but also a different way of escaping. The world of Supernatural isn’t a happy one, it’s violent and scary and not a world I would want to live in necessarily. However, the ideals of the main characters are noble and honourable which is the main pulling point for getting involved with the characters and their journey.

I’ve now watched four seasons out of seven and have finally gotten to the point where I couldn’t keep watching, it just became unreal for me. And as much as I feel in love with Misha Collins (plays Castiel, an angel) it became too fantastical. Now that may seem silly because the premise is based on the unreal or unknown, however there is a point where I can suspend belief too if the world is real and if it fits within the realm of possibility. In fantasy it may be that a new, different world is created and thus the laws of our natural world do not apply in the same way, but in Supernatural it borders between the real world and a different reality that it lost me into the space between the two dimensions. I couldn’t believe that what was happening could happen in the world we live in now, even with everything that had come before, and thus I disconnected from the story.

It makes me sad that this happened. Not because I loved the show but because it meant that there were three seasons left for me to watch but I didn’t want to. I hate not finishing a story. Supernatural will be unfinished for me, but will live on in Tumblr land through gifs instead. I’ll just remain in the dark of the unknown of the world of Supernatural for the time being.

Fantasy in the real world – Dollhouse

Dollhouse - Official Poster - from IMDB.com

Dollhouse – Official Poster – from IMDB.com

Dollhouse (2009-2010)

Creator: Joss Whedon
Stars: Eliza Dushku, Harry Lennix and Fran Kranz

I have recently become a little obsessed with Joss Whedon’s work. After falling in love with Firefly and then The Avengers, I’ve now taken up the task of watching his body of work. (Although I may skip most of Buffy as vampires have never been my thing). I first heard about Dollhouse from a couple of my nerd friends who were having an Avengers marathon at the time and were talking about Whedon’s work. I put off watching it for a while as I didn’t really know that much about it. And then I got sick last week. And I watched the entire first season in two days. Oh my word. Joss Whedon is a genius. No really, there is nothing this guy can’t execute brilliantly.

Dollhouse is based on the premise that there is a exclusive, secret organisation that fulfills people’s fantasies through the use of “actives” or “dolls”. These dolls are people that have volunteered for the program for five years, had their memory wiped, and are imprinted with another person’s traits, abilities, characteristics, desires, etc, in order to fulfill the fantasy of the client. It sounds weird, it is, and it is fraught with ethical dilemmas. Whedon knows this and explores this in a really interesting way throughout the show.

Our journey in Dollhouse is centred around Echo, or Caroline, played by Eliza Dushku. She is one of the best dolls in the dollhouse and the story follows her life in the house and on jobs with clients. She has the ability to adapt in the imprint though and this unpredictable nature of Echo brings her under closer inspection. It is through Echo that we see the world of the dollhouse as what it is and what it does. I came to really love and care for Echo as she was tormented with the half-remembering of her past and the passion to find what really happened to her. It is characters like Echo that is the reason I love this kind of show. It has a unique ability to transport you into the world and to question what you know about your own world. It harnesses the power of the unknown and gives you a glimpse into how the pure can be corrupted. It transports desperation into peace, all with the uncomfortable feeling in the pit of your stomach of knowing that it isn’t quite right. And it grabs you and pulls you along for the ride through each episode with the excited and nervous anticipation of what will become of these people.

Maybe that’s just me, maybe I get too involved in TV characters and the worlds writers create for me to escape into, but I do love it. I live vicariously through them as they do things I would never do, things I wish I could do, and things I know I would love to do. And then when each episode ends I long to return with them into their world, to be one of them, and to experience life in a dramatic and exciting way. But as I pull back from that world and the main titles fill my screen I’m brought back to the fact that I am sitting on my couch, sick and tired, and that the world I’ve been transported into is not real and that I would much prefer where I am to the bruises and ethical dilemmas that the characters experience in that world. I suppose that is why I love TV so much as well, because you can escape that world when you need to. If only it was the same for life sometimes. And maybe that’s why Dollhouse has grabbed me so much, because the dolls live in an escaped world, where they experience something and then come back from the real world to their haven of tranquility to forget and escape the horror of the real world. Is it the same for entertainment? Is entertainment our haven?

Just Having An Angsty Teenage Moment – Awkward

Awkward - Poster from IMDB.com

Awkward – Poster from IMDB.com

Awkward (2011)

Creator: Lauren Iungerich
Stars: Molly Tarlov, Ashley Rickards and Beau Mirchoff

I discovered this show late one night while I was scanning through a list of shows on GetGlue. I started watching the first episode at 10pm as something to fall asleep to. Six hours later I had not slept and I had finished the first season. I’ve gone back again and watched the first half of it through again and I have to say MTV has actually done something right for once.

Awkward tells the story of Jenna, a bit of a nobody at her American high school but after a summer camp and her first time with a guy from her school – Matty – she is confronted with the prospect of becoming high school famous as she has an accident whilst choking on some Asprin which makes it seem like she has attempted to commit suicide.

The season unfolds with Jenna finding her new found status on the school’s radar as “That Girl” both troubling and exciting. The complexity of teenage relationships, the pressure of high school, and the humour behind having parents who were only 16 when they had you brings the tormented world of high school to life.

I really love this show because of the character of Jenna and how she seems to be one of the only three sane characters in the entire show along with her father and Jake, the golden jock. Her sense of humour is delightfully dry and the way she approaches tricky situations is balanced with a reasonable amount of both crazy and sensible. It creates a perfectly real character that intrigues and makes you want to keep being involved in Jenna’s life. You want to be her friend and to help her make better life decisions and you want to bitch slap Sadie and Matty at points for her. Jenna is a compelling character because she is conveyed to be misunderstood and underestimated by those around her.

The relationships that Jenna forms over the season bring to light a complexity to people that we all know is there but it really can be seen in teenagers as they try and work out life. The things that go unsaid because of fear, or the reasons why some people are awful to all those around them are not just as simple as the fact that they are awful people. Jenna’s relationship with her nemesis Sadie is an interesting one because Sadie isn’t your typical pretty, thin, popular mean girl, she is popular because her family is rich. It’s a different take on the mean girl because it shows the real insecurity of bullies. It reveals the true nature of teenagers in their own little world and the fact that no matter who you are and where you come from the insecurities that haunt you also haunt others. The beauty in this for a teen show is that it makes you, as the viewer, relate to the characters on screen. No matter how old you are there will be resemblances of you in this show, especially if you are a woman, although I feel that the male characters are quite true to form in their complexity and confusion.

The story line of the show is mixed with humour and seriousness but it is held together well with the arching narrative of the ominous letter and the mystery of who wrote it to begin with. The narrative within each episode isn’t strong and it at points can seem to struggle pushing through the 20 minute episodes. It is however one of those shows where you get to the end of the episode and without thinking go to the next one because you are compelled to keep watching these characters and see where their lives will lead them. It will be interesting to see how long the show goes for and how they continue to chart the course of Jenna’s experiences but I am looking forward to seeing where they take it.