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Game of Thrones

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Monday, August 20, 2018

Pokemon Politics

In Episode 415, Germar returns and brings the fire with him. Here, he explains how the world of "Pokemon Go" represents the type of equality we don't dare dream of.  Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's episode is sponsored by www.WarbyParkertrial.com/looktothecookie.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

The "Mission: Impossible" Movies, Ranked

You love lists and Look to the Cookie doesn't do nearly enough of them. So here are the rankings and reasons for the six released Mission Impossible movies as determined by the sexiest single man in all of pretend media. 

Germar spent the last three weeks watching these films, just to author this piece. Yes, they took that long because they are that bad.
Photofest
6. Mission Impossible 4/10 Here, an already middle-aged Tom Cruise looks comparatively young. This film is the best ever 1990s made-for-TV film, which just happens to be directed by Brian De Palma and released in theaters. You know how The Untouchables is the best movie ever, then you realize it's sorta whack, but then you realize it came out in 1987, so it's pretty good. Mission Impossible is the spy version of that, but released in 1996. So, in 2018, not only is it dated, but it's dated next to other 90s films. Yes, it has that one iconic shot that they never got tired of . . . .
5. Mission: Impossible II 4.5/10 Hey, Tom's looking like old weird-ass Tom here. He even has Tom Hank's awful hair from that one movie about a book. John Woo went out of his way here to demonstrate what an awful director he can be. Most of the movie takes place in slow motion. Then, the slo-mo stops to cut to a close-up of something that has no relevance. But hey, he also directed Paycheck, Face/Off (which I liked as a child...), and Broken Arrow. So, why do you think he's so good again? At least the love interest was black . . . ish. Wait, why were they so in love?

4. Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol 6.6/10 Thin. So, I'm sure most of you like this one. When I saw, "directed by Brad Bird," I was like "the cartoon dude did a Mission: Impossible movie?!?" He did. And considering that, this was awesome. How did he get this gig? I mean how many times did he sleep with Tom Cruise to get this gig? I mean, I'd do Cruise like seven times to direct a Mission: Impossible. I might even like it, after seeing that first check.

3. Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation 6.7/10 Oh how I've changed. Initially, I thought - "decent flick." A few days ago I thought, "Rebecca Ferguson is the most beautiful, talented, perfect person to ever appear in a movie!" Plus, this one's good because Christopher McQuarrie directed it. I don't know him at all except that he's Tom Cruise's lover personal film director. Look it up. He's directed a Tom Cruise led film about five dozen times. It's a perfect match. It's like they know each other on some deeper level. I don't know. It reminds me of when I work with my girlfriends. We just really understand . . . . Never mind. Is this libel or slander?

2.  Mission: Impossible III 6.8/10 Finally, a real director. I understand that some of you don't get why J.J. Abrams is one of the best things to happen to visual media. But that's because you're old or dumb or old and dumb. This was the first good film in the series. And yes, much of that has to do with Philip Seymour Hoffman. He's so much better than every other actor in the series to this point that it's almost awkward. It's akin to Steph Curry joining a champion high school basketball team. Yeah, they were great, but . . . he just made a full-court shot, while playing PokemonGo . . . and he shot it with his elbow. 


1. Mission: Impossible - Fallout 7/10 Weird right? This film isn't better than the others, but somehow it definitely is. I haven't looked, but I bet Chris directed it. He and Tom just have a tight connection. I'll look now. Called it. This film is the best because it's smart. And it's smart by realizing that we get it now. I got it 15 years ago. But now we all get it. The guy that's the new good guy - he's the bad guy. The person who's oddly bad, or weirdly good is wearing a mask. Here, they didn't ever try to say "gotcha." They told an obvious but good story. I mean . . . plutonium again? But they brought back all of your favorites and somehow tied the entire series together. It almost makes sense now. Nah, it's nonsensical--it just follows Cruise-logic well.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Ant-Man 2, Westworld, and Cloak & Dagger Suck

Marvel
In Episode 413, Germar is sick . . . again, but drops the hottest hot takes. Ant-Man and The Wasp is kinda awful. Westworld should be good, but it's not. Cloak & Dagger is AMAZING if you can't sleep (and you've already slept through all of Westworld). Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's show is sponsored by www.getGrammarly.com/looktothecookie.


Monday, July 16, 2018

The 2018 Basketball Edition

In Episode 412, Germar welcomes the west's best sports broadcaster, the Jessica Slate. They discuss everything NBA, including Trae "is he a bust" Young, L.A.bron, Lil Luka Slow Foot, super teams, and the Great Phoenix Suns. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron and Jessica is @theJSlate. Today's show is sponsored by www.getGrammarly.com/looktothecookie.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Power Rankings: Superhero TV [Updated 7/15/18]

You love lists and Look to the Cookie doesn't do enough of them. So here are the rankings and reasons for the 20 modern comic-based super-powered television series, as determined by the entire LTC staff, which is currently just Germar. The list is updated as seasons conclude and series premiere.
20. Inhumans 5/10 Years of optimism, anxiety, and backtracking resulted in this, universally agreed upon, worst part of the MCU. Scott Buck may be MCU's kryptonite. Please, Marvel, don't let him ruin another series (e.g., Iron Fist). 

19. Iron Fist 5/10 No one likes this show. And no one fears the surfer dude-voiced, Ramen noodle-haired, prince of privilege no matter how many times he says he beat a dragon or calls himself "immortal." Colleen Wing and Bakuto almost saved this atrocity. And I almost worked at Fox Sports. Cue that Brandy song.

18. Agent Carter 6/10 Yes, I hosted the show about the show, but it always felt like a lukewarm Marvel offering. The pieces fit snugly, and Hayley Atwell shined, but did anyone even watch the second season?


17. Jessica Jones 6/10 Two Js is da realest! She single-handedly saved The Defenders (literally and also from us critics). In her debut, she overcame the #1 true villain in the MCU (twice). She also laid out Luke Cage. And maybe she can fly. And then the second season sucked hard. The former #1 has dropped like the best beat.


16. Gotham 6.1/10 Gotham will probably be really good once it's all on Netflix, and we all finally decide to watch it. The first season got everything wrong--especially allowing Jada Pinkett to perform like an amateur starring in a Spelman College production of Wicked


15. Cloak & Dagger 6.4/10 I want to love the show, in the way I love its young stars. And I might, if I could stay awake. I think they realize they have superpowers in episode five . . . I think. Who's this show for?--moody-artsy-poetic-horny-virgin 13-year-olds? I'm guessing. They get bonus points for flipping the most common racial stereotypes.

14. Arrow 6.5/10 Arrow has quickly become the can miss DCTV CW show of the week. But we keep watching. I look forward to its ending, followed by frequent character cameos on the other shows. It started too fast and left little room to grow. Team Arrow was Justice League lite before we got the Legends, Team Flash, or Supergirl. Pacing.

13. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 6.5/10 Its debut was a meandering mess. But for the fans that stuck around, Agents of Hydra/Agents of Nothing got good fast. And more recently, we've been gifted the best live action Ghostrider, top notch action, intelligent political commentary, and the best possible "what if"-styled virtual world story. 

12. Daredevil 6.5/10 Hallway scenes started here. It's a shame they didn't end here. Foggy is as whack as Charlie Cox's accent. If you're anti-shadowy fight scenes, then Kingpin kept your interest. This series was redeemed by the Punisher's arrival. Ssssooo many ninjas.

11. Legion 6.5/10 Is this a period piece? Style over substance? Maybe, but beautiful still, plus ambitious. It's not a great show yet, but it's better than almost all of the X-men movies.


10. The Gifted 6.6/10 This is the best way to realistically represent, on television, the best team of heroes in the history of comics. No, they're not the X-men. But if the X-men X-isted they'd be a lot more like The Gifted than that awesome Saturday morning cartoon

9. The Punisher 7/10 It's nothing like other shows on this list. They chose to ignore the superhero world setting. It works, but may have worked better as a standalone. Ultimately, it was more predictable than most comic book-based shows because it was a lot like every gritty revenge, PTSD flick we've ever seen.

8. Krypton 7/10 So far, so good. They did it. They borrowed from the beautiful Man of Steel opening, and made their own Krypton. The black Zods are awesome and their story has stolen the show. Plus, it sets up Zods better than any previous source. Seg-El is that dude.

7. Legends of Tomorrow 7/10 If you don't like this show, you don't like smiles, fun, or good times. Remember when The Avengers was the best thing to happen to the '10s? DC decided to do that with 200th of the budget, but weekly. 



6. The Defenders 7.1/10 The first four episodes were the highlight of my year. The Defenders are to the Avengers what the X-men are to the Justice League. They are the heroes we might be, not the gods that save us. They blended four distinct tales better than I imagined possible--style and mythos. To enjoy: 1) ignore the villains' plot; 2) remember that we witnessed an even more annoying Iron Fist earlier this year

5. The Flash 7.1/10 So maybe skip the second season. And maybe they do the same arc each season. But this is the most pleasant series on the list. It's like a '90s Saturday morning cartoon for grown-ups. This is the team that every Millennial would join if given the opportunity. 


4. Luke Cage 7.5/10 Cage, one of the strongest characters on the list, started weakly and ended weakly. But that midsection does work. Ummmm. Cottonmouth is the King. And if you're black, this should feel like a moment . . . for us . . . because it is. And in the second season, a strong show got stronger. It's a shame this moment is partially wasted on Mike Colter. Bushmaster saved the series and washed the diamond-backed taste from our mouths.

3. Supergirl 7.5/10 Every week entertains. Each episode plays out like an updated, less whiny, less soap opera-y version of Smallville. The weird episode where she was "kid" Supergirl was weird. Pro tip: Superman is your problem, not your solution. Last season went deep on race, LGBT matters, relationships, and it remained a top comic book-based show. Kudos.

2. Runaways 8.3/10 At the episode three mark, this show is far better than anything on this list. Performances, cinematography, drama, use of powers, relationships, representation--perfection. The problem with being on top . . . is that long tumble down. How will they handle powers or the discovery of the teens' discovery? How will they handle the budding and realistic romances? And is this really the MCU? Did it need to be? (3 months later . . . show was dope)
1. Black Lightning 9/10 It's only the most important show in the history of television in the United States. They deal with everything, better than most shows deal with anything--race, violence, cops, sex, LGBT, relationships, schools . . . and superpowers. "This one's for the streets."

Rankings: the Marvel Cinematic Universe [UPDATED 7/15/18]

You love lists and Look to the Cookie doesn't do enough of them. So here are the rankings and reasons for the 20 released Marvel Cinematic Universe movies as determined by the entire LTC staff that wears glasses and has dark skin . . . named Germar.


Marvel Studios
20. 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.

 
19.  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 show-stopping 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.

18. Ant-Man and the Wasp 6.5/10 THIS. This is what people are talking about when they say that "superhero movies aren't good" and that "they're all the same" and that they "hate Marvel movies." The best scene takes place mid-credits. Yes, it's sci-fi or fantasy or something, but they break all the rules they made. It's not very funny. And they should have just called it Ant-Man 2

17. Spider-Man: Homecoming 6.6/10 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

16. Doctor Strange 6.7/10 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.

15.  Captain America: The Winter Soldier   6.8/10 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?

14.  Ant-Man  6.9/10 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.

13.  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

12.  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!!! 

11.  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.

10.  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 were 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.

9.   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.
 
8.  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.

7.  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.

6. 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.

5. Black Panther 8.4/10 Deep. I have no jokes here. Even though this wasn't the best film or my favorite film, it is by far the most important. Had it been less predictable, with a T'Challa that was cool and mysterious like in Civil War, it's a 10/10.

4. 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. 

3. Avengers: Infinity War 8.6/10 No, this isn't a movie, but it's THE best moviegoing experience, unless you get down like Pee Wee Herman. I saw it 2.5 times because I just needed to see Hulk get dat ass beat one mo' time. 

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. 


Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Hungry Holiday Hell - July 4, 2018

by Germar Derron

Below you can read the uncensored, totally true, text-diary of today's Fourth of July tomfoolery. To be fair, this was a grand opening. But - but . . . . Single-man, family-less, quasi-friendless holidays are already the worst--then this happens. And yes, I have a couple of invites, but I'm wiped out.

No, I did nothing to deserve this. And yes, "Ex #11" enjoys these text-diary deliveries.



Me 

12:45  So I did decided to try this new soul food place - kinda busy, but not too bad

12:57  Friend from work here. I sat with him

12:57  He's done

12:57  Said it was really good

12:58  They're already out of almost everything

12:58  I've been here for 15 mins and no one has taken my order

12:58  That kinda black music you like is blasting, Y'know, the song came out last year but it only plays on oldies stations.

12:59  It's like a family thing so a bunch a Lil kids out here dunno what's going on. Tryna serve.

1:01  Almost all white people here

1:04  Still haven't taken my order

1:04  I haven't eaten today

1:04  Headache

1:07  In over his head teen boy took my order after "momma" yelled at him

1:07  Grandma just came out the kitchen to snap on some white folk

1:08  Another black lady commiserating wit meh

1:11  Gospel blasting . . .  Scripture all over the wall

1:13  I got watermelon kool-aid - maybe

1:13  Lil girl here looks like slightly older version of your daughter - toothpick

1:14  Cash only but they ain't post it or tell anyone

1:14  It's an unsurprising disaster

1:14  She's actually much older

1:15  I can't call it; black don't crack

1:15  Lotta kids just standing around (workers?)

1:17  A dude just paid - no tax or tip - maybe later?   

1:20  10 minute wait on chicken

1:20  More mature [your daughter] just talked to me

1:21  They even have the same teeth

1:33  They never brought my drink

1:34  They just brought two legs

1:34  He promised a breast-wing quarter

1:34  I have no food still

1:34  And I told them bring the other food, I'll wait on chicken

1:35  They did not

1:35  Then they bring an ounce of mac and two legs

1:36  She is younger but the most helpful

1:38  Lady behind me has the same complaints

1:38  She got a leg

1:39  Playing old Kirk Franklin albums now

1:40  They don't refill drinks

1:41  Ate my dessert

1:41  Strawberry shortcake; it was horrible

1:42  dry, store bought, few strawberries, and a Lil whip cream

1:42  There's only been four or five tables here the entire time

1:43  800 kids just came in through the back door

1:43  I still have no drink

1:44  I'm jittery

1:45  I think I might die here

1:45  I convinced myself to support black owned

1:45  We always regret it don't we

1:45  They ran out of everything . . . again

1:45  I think this tattooed brunette is checking me out

1:45  I caught her

1:46  Now she's making sure not to look at me

1:46  People just got here now have their food

1:46  I've been here over an hour

1:47  Black ladies say tea not sweet..  Tastes like water

1:48  I just heard them yelling in the back about my fried chicken

Ex #11

1:49  Omg

1:49  That's horrible

Me

1:49  Nobody's order is right and they didn't like the food

1:49  The white people seem to like it

1:50  I've been here over an hour and everybody eating but me

1:50  Uh oh . . . take out orders wrong

Ex #11

1:50  It's always a crapshoot going to a soul food restaurant. And black folks just can't get right.

Me

1:50  Still no drink

Ex #11

1:51  This gonna be a FB story?

Me

1:51  I'm just writing to publish this later.

1:51  Ltc

1:51  Putting something this long on FB?

1:51  Maybe tumblr

1:52  The kids are now doing a dance routine in the front

1:52  So hard for me not to leave

1:52  I was pulling for [this place].  Now I want them to fail.

1:53  She actually asked the last table for tips. It was so weird

1:53  Lady just came out of the kitchen and yelled that they don't have breasts; I guess that was meant for me.

1:54  They're dancing down the aisle to gospel.

1:55  I'm getting sick now.

1:55  I think I have to go.

1:56  The dude that messed up my order is eating in the back.

1:59  I left

2:00  I won't go back

2:08  I'm at Outback

2:10  The waitress here is mad that I'm here

2:11  She's crying. I don't know why.

2:11  But again I'm trying to be cool.

2:12  I think maybe she's mad that she's getting tables or maybe tables of one but she's having a complete breakdown.

2:12  She can't even talk

2:12  Could not get her name out

2:14  I still don't have a drink

2:16  She's having a complete meltdown

2:16  WTF is going on today

2:17  Got some water and bread though

2:17  Bread is stone cold

Ex #11

2:18  Jesus Germar

Me

2:47  Full. Had a burger and Coke. Feeling better. She kinda apologized and said she's not charging me for the Coke.

2:48  She apologized thrice. Apparently she was just overwhelmed. Thanked me for my patience.

Ex #11

3:25  Glad you got some food in ya.

Me

3:26  And she gave me a Coke for the road. I gave her a $5 tip on a $10 meal.

6:30  Don't text me. Writing Story.

7:05  Done.









Sunday, July 1, 2018

Luke Cage, Season 2

In Episode 411, after a long hiatus, Germar returns just in time for the king's return. Here, he covers Netflix's second season of Luke Cage better than anyone. The analysis includes, but is not limited to, race, regions, Westworld, Black Lightning, Black Panther, and Alexander Luthor. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron.  Today's episode is sponsored by www.GameFlyoffer.com/looktothecookie.



Saturday, June 2, 2018

My Mount Rushmores

In Episode 410, Germar provides his Mount Rushmore of EVERYTHING--girlfriends, athletes, movies, artists, songs, books, video games, rappers, cartoons . . . .  Of course, follow him everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's show is sponsored by www.tryGoDaddy.com/looktothecookie.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

COBRA KAI

In Episode 409, Germar reviews the only reason to get YouTube Red (terrible name). And it's SPOILER FREE!!! But first, it's a D.S.E. with talk about his new film, wyd and about his new crush [message sent: "wyd"]. Follow Germar everywhere @GermarDerron. Today's episode is sponsored by www.GameFlyoffer.com/looktothecookie.

 
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