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Game of Thrones

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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Rankings: the DC Extended Universe

You love lists and Look to the Cookie doesn't do nearly enough of them. So here are the rankings and reasons for the five released DC Extended Universe films as determined by every African-American staff member at LTC.
5. Suicide Squad 3.8/10 Suicide Squad and Fantastic Four (2015) share the dubious distinction as the only modern superhero films that I have not watched a second time. Suicide Squad wins the award for the Best Trailer-Worst Movie combo. I've rarely cared so little for characters or a story. In case you forgot: 1) civilians became putties from Power Rangers; 2) the mission/B villain was Waller; 3) the actual villains were a temporary team member and weird guy you forgot; 4) someone important died immediately; 5) only the marquee names mattered--Robbie, Smith, Leto, Davis--the other 18,000 cast members became background; 6) except for Diablo who could have been cool, if the filmmakers knew anything about storytelling or character development. This movie sucked.

4. Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice 5.5/10 The longer cut is better. Basically, they attempted to make an intelligent, dark, and gritty film and failed. You never attempt to do a thing. You're intelligent or you're not. You can't feign intelligence, you'll look like a fool, i.e. this film.

3. Wonder Woman 6.5/10 PERFECTION right through the complete obliteration of that long-held German line. Beyond that, the film fizzles. Steve Trevors' motley crew didn't humor, scare, endear, or anything. And Steve dulled much of Diana's shine. Aries did not impress, in appearance, performance, or overall villainy. Wonder Woman, and all of Themyscira, saved what was otherwise a mediocre film.
2. Justice League 7/10 I don't get the hate. I somewhat loved this film. Like Thor 2: The Dark World, my only complaint is that it's too short. There's too much to get done in such a small amount of time. But considering the limitations provided, they got EVERYTHING right. EVERYTHING. (maybe I didn't like blaxploitation Aquaman, but everything else)

1. Man of Steel 8/10 Here's the deal, you want your Superman to be a corny-ass Boy Scout. I guess I have to respect that. But I think I like the DCEU Superman because he relays that a person that isn't perfect, that makes mistakes, that gets angry, that looks a little rough, can still be a hero. This is me as Superman. It's every minority, most women, people with disabilities, people with criminal records, people who made a mistake--we still have value. We too can still save the world.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Best. Thing. Ever. - "Come Back, Barack" - SNL

Look to the Cookie is known for original content. But sometimes, some things are so good that we have to share.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

The Punisher 1-4 and Small Town Stories

In Episode 393, Germar reviews the first four episodes of Marvel's The Punisher on Netflix (14:40). But first, hear his small town stories of underage advances, and public transportation nazis. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's episode is sponsored by www.getGrammarly.com/looktothecookie.

Indie Music: Jay Hunna "Better Days"

by Germar Derron


Better Days is definitely not a mixtape, EP, or hodgepodge collection of tracks--this is a legit LP.

"Fuck the System" sports a new school sound, paired with an old-school message. Contrary to common criticisms of Jay Hunna's contemporaries, he actually has something to say. As he relays on "Good Ol' Music," he's nothing like these "mumble rappers." Plus, he pulls off the best of both worlds as well as the best artists. No, that's not an R. Kelly/Jay Z reference. It's about keeping it "real."

"Keeping it real" means two things to every artist: 1) be yourself, and 2) use your talent to make a difference. It's far more difficult to do than any novice knows. Throughout Better Days, Hunna dranks, gets high, and has high hopes for the African-American community. He talks about "nothing," while talking about the G.O.A.T.s and how they spoke on everything. 

"Bad Guy" feels good, like a feel-good Kanye track (unironically, another "bad guy"). And if you ever smoked anything, at night in an SUV with tinted windows--"Another Level" is the song you played. 

For the production junkies, there are multiple tracks to dissect. "No Hook" features the best jazzy percussive noted sampled loop sound of the last few years (and some of the albums' best lyrics too). The cute key riffs keep hammering on "Everything" and "Night Shift." Then, there are woodwind melodies leading . . . "Amazing."

Not only does the album include something for everyone; most tracks are for everyone. You can slow dance in the club, drink casually with friends, get deep and thoughtful or even revolutionary all within half an hour. And he's storytelling like J. Cole too.

I could review every track, but I won't. If I have one complaint . . . I watched music videos for "Good Ol' Music" and "Fuck the System." So, the team must want to lead with those songs (the singles?). But they are not the strongest tracks here. Scroll up. Now read all of the other titles referenced. There are your singles. That's my two cents for free.

And where is he from? I just checked. Chicago. But you already knew. 

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Thoughts: Rogue One Re-watch

Last year, Germar watched Rogue One, and hated it. This year, he watched it again, and again. He was wrong. Apologies. Today's sponsor is www.tryLootCrate.com/looktothecookie. And don't forget to SUBSCRIBE.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

The Entire Gifted Inhuman Arrowverse

In Episode 392, ummmmmmmmm #Supergirl, #TheFlash, #LegendsofTomorrow, #Arrow, #TheGifted, #Inhumans. But first, Germar has to address Hollywood's, and America's, disgusting men. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's episode is sponsored by www.tryGoDaddy.com/looktothecookie.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Best. Thing. Ever. - Eminem - Walk On Water ft. Beyoncé

Look to the Cookie is known for original content. But sometimes, some things are so good that we have to share.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Thoughts: Thor: Ragnarok

Here, Germar, while driving through tornadoes with no access to power, provides to you, free of charge, the best review of Thor: Ragnarok. He forgot about Doctor Strange, who stole the show early. Additionally, he borrowed a friend's phone and didn't quite get the angle of the camera right. Apologies. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's vlog is sponsored by www.GameFlyoffer.com/looktothecookie.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Rankings: the Marvel Cinematic Universe [UPDATED 11/4/17]

You love lists and Look to the Cookie doesn't do enough of them. So here are the rankings and reasons for the 17 released Marvel Cinematic Universe movies as determined by the entire LTC staff that wears glasses and has dark skin . . . named Germar.

17. Thor  5/10 Thor is the only movie on the list that is absolutely awful. Whenever I hear someone say they liked Thor, I want to punch them in the face very hard. I watched this awful film twice because my ex's sister-in-law convinced the family that it was good. They all hated it. I feel like Thor was the most cartoony or comic-y of the movies. If you liked this movie, you're probably a Thor fan, or hardcore comic fan, or you have absolutely terrible taste, or you want to feel my fist.

 
16.  The Incredible Hulk 6.5/10 This film works on just about every level. It ranked poorly solely because the field is stacked. Bringing in the Abomination for a showstopping city-smashing finale was genius. Seeing hints of the Leader was cool. Edward Norton did what he does; he killed it. Some parts drag, but it's about as good as a live-action Hulk film could be outside of The Avengers.

15. Spider-Man: Homecoming 6.5/10 Maybe I just hit that age where cutesy teen movies lose their charm. If I have, this is a sad sad time for me. Michael Keaton can do no wrong. And Marvel's actually inspired inspiring casting excites me--sexually (so many shades of brown). This version of Spidey is the most realistic, which often means boring. Tobey > Tom > Andrew

14. Doctor Strange 6.5/10 Ok, MCU fans stahp it. Every next film cannot be their best film. This was good film, but mediocre in this collection. They've perfected the genre, and now they can crank them out in perpetuity. But Doctor Strange lacked the team dynamic and history that recent entries contain. And while the movie remained active, it wasn't the action of "Winter Soldier," "Ultron," or "Civil War." Yes, magic, but still. Dormammu ending perfect.

13.  Captain America: The Winter Soldier   6.5/10 Somehow this average flick fooled the world. It wasn't nearly as clever as you think.  It did, however, make Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. a much better series. The action, especially between Cap and Bucky dwarfs the other non-ensemble films. This rendition of Falcon fits nicely. The Winter Soldier appeared as he might in my dreams and nightmares. Oddly, I enjoyed it more the second time.  Expectations? Hype?

12.  Ant-Man  6.5/10 I found this film to be the least "Marvel-y," which is fine. Because it wasn't a typical Marvel film, it was American film-making 101 and quite predictable. If you like mediocre movies, you will LOVE this. That said, they did pull this off well.

11.  Iron Man 3  7/10 Ughhhhh. I loved the Mandarin thing, but was this really an Iron Man movie? I appreciated the Mandarin ruse because we weren't ready for the actual Mandarin yet.  I understood the stuff with the kid, but really? There were two iron men that rarely got to suit-up. Annnd the weird fire volcano people . . . . Annnnd Pepper became Iron Man and Fire Lady . . . .  Annnnnnd how did this get ranked so highly? Oh, there were lots of suits fighting at the end--that was cool. Although it was wise of the writers, I never bought RDJ's portrayal of PTSD

10.  Iron Man 2  7/10 No one liked this film, but me; I understand that. But hey, I have a sense of humor. Drunken Iron Man dancing and fighting, stolen suits, HAMMER and weapon malfunctions, the bird, the Widow . . . c'mon!!! 

9.  Thor: Ragnarok 7/10 Comedy is fine, but comedy in every single line of dialogue for an hour straight is weird. This is the first movie EVERRRR where every actor played the role of comic relief. Beyond that, it was somewhat amazing--beautifully shot, amazing performances, and CGI excellence. They get bonus points for a decent villain, an Executioner sighting, and a Planet Hulk nod.

8.  Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 7/10 They almost did it again. Odd that this film isn't more connected to the Avengers part of the universe. It was hilarious, but almost not a movie. The typical conflict and tension was non-existent. The twists were predictable in a typical way. The B-villain and story were laughable. But to be fair, how do you follow one of the biggest films of all time--the biggest, universally loved, surprise hit since The Matrix? They almost did it.

7.   Avengers: Age Of Ultron   7/10 Not a good film, but a HUGE film. They attempted to pack too much into one film. Ultron and Spader dominated. Why do Ultron, and later the Vision, exist and how? . . . not that important really. They attempted an attempt at explanations all over this thing. Nothing made sense, but it was a wild and fun ride.
 
6.  Thor: The Dark World   7.5/10  Yes, I appreciate this film more than most of you, but that's because I get things and stuff. Yes, the bad guy was weak, unimportant, and not memorable, but so what. They took a big cue from The Avengers, and made a film that was fun, funny, action packed, and included a beginning, middle, and end. I only hated that it was so short.

5. Iron Man   8/10  I never understood why you feel so strongly and positively about this film. I re-watched it. It's solid, and really solidly establishes the entire universe. I had far more fun with 2 and maybe even 3, but this is a far superior film.

4. Captain America: The First Avenger   8/10  Surprise motherf*cker! (that's a Dexter reference) Honestly, I can't even get through this now, but I remember what it meant then. I'm not a Captain America fan. This film made me care about him. They poked fun at him. He was a guy and not an Uncle Sam poster (except for when he clearly was, but that wasn't by choice). Most importantly, my female non-nerd friends thought this film was dope and not just because the Human Torch starred in it.

3. Captain America: Civil War 8.5/10 #TeamIronMan all day! This IS actually "Avengers 3: Civil War," but it doesn't lose points for that. Marvel Studios does an unbelievable job of adding characters, combining worlds, and progressing their universe. It's very well balanced. It loses points (and me) in some of the more verbose scenes. The dialogue wasn't too complex, just too much. The conflict was simple and obvious--show us more of that. Spider-man was flawless. Black Panther was more flawless. 

2.    Guardians of the Galaxy  9/10  People that don't include this in their top two also get punched in the face.  80s references "never go over my head" because "there ain't no thing like me but me" whore. The flick's fairly flawless. 
 1.  The Avengers   10/10  Nailed it. THIS is what I want to feel every time I pay $50 for popcorn, soda, and Raisinets. What can I say that hasn't been said before? The most balanced movie I've ever seen, if you forget that Hawkeye is also sort of an Avenger. 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Stranger Things 2.2; Walking Dead Inhumans

In Episode 391, Germar wraps his thoughts on Stranger Things 2. Plus, he discusses the latest episodes of The Walking Dead and Marvel's Inhumans. But first, a special announcement. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's episode is sponsored by www.tryLootCrate.com/looktothecookie.


 
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