Monday 3 September 2018


August's viewing was a mixed bag - a couple of films (not great), continued viewing of a couple of TV series - both still in progress (very enjoyable) and a couple of trips to the theatre (excellent).

The Handmaid's Tale (Season 2) (2018)

Another few episodes watched - three maybe four, maybe four or five to go, if we don't finish in September we'll give up I reckon. All I have to do is get three people in the room at the same time.

Excellent, gripping, scary, a few more harrowing and disturbing events. It is starting to feel like the world's longest pregnancy now.

From Wikipedia...,

The Handmaid's Tale is an American dystopian drama web television series created by Bruce Miller, based on the 1985 novel of the same name by Margaret Atwood. It was ordered by the streaming service Hulu as a straight-to-series order of 10 episodes, for which production began in late 2016. The plot features a dystopian future following a Second American Civil War wherein a totalitarian society subjects fertile women, called "Handmaids", into child-bearing servitude.

The first three episodes of the series premiered on April 26, 2017; the subsequent seven episodes aired on a weekly basis every Wednesday. In May 2017, the series was renewed for a second season which premiered on April 25, 2018.

The Handmaid's Tale has received widespread critical acclaim and its first season won eight Primetime Emmy Awards from thirteen nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series, becoming the first series on a streaming service to win an Emmy for Outstanding Series.It also won Golden Globe Awards for Best Television Series – Drama and Best Actress for Elisabeth Moss.

In May 2018, Hulu announced that the series had been renewed for a third season.

Moana (2016)

If this was fifteen years ago and watched at the cinema, undoubtedly I would have snoozed through this, which is probably the best way to watch it. I doubt I'm the target audience. Dwayne Johnson features. We have a minority tribe and a female heroine, all very PC.

From IMDB...

In Ancient Polynesia, when a terrible curse incurred by the Demigod Maui reaches Moana's island, she answers the Ocean's call to seek out the Demigod to set things right.

The Boy (2016)
Another film my children took great delight in forcing me to watch. I'm of a nervous jumpy disposition so anything slightly horror has me twitching and fidgety. This was no exception. The Boy of the title is a creepy doll which needs baby sitting, while the parents go away for a break. More disturbing and uncomfortable than out and out frightening, it improves towards the end when all is suddenly explained. I didn't know any of the cast. Not one I'll rush to watch again or recommend. Better than Moana though.


An American nanny is shocked that her new English family's boy is actually a life-sized doll. After she violates a list of strict rules, disturbing events make her believe that the doll is really alive.

The Sinner Season 1 (2017)

Another one I seem to have been watching forever. A couple more episodes watched and two or three to go. Jessica Biel and Bill Pullman are superb, My daughter, who has seen it all, keeps saying wait for the reveal. Well we haven't got there yet. It's confusing but compelling. I don't know why this confused woman did what she did yet.

From Google.....

Young mother Cora Tannetti is overcome by an inexplicable fit of rage that leads her to commit a startling -- and very public -- act of violence, with no explanation as to why she did it. When Detective Harry Ambrose begins his investigation and grows obsessed with uncovering Cora's hidden motive, the two work together to try to get deep into her psyche to learn about the violent secrets that are hidden in her past. The eight-episode thriller -- which tries to uncover the "why" instead of the "who" or "what" -- stars Jessica Biel, who also serves as an executive producer, and Bill Pullman in the lead roles.

The League of Gentlemen Live Again! 2018
A live show watched in Edinburgh with my wife at the end of the month. Very funny, familiar characters from the TV show and film, a bit of audience participation - glad it wasn't me hauled up on stage. Definitely cult viewing and an acquired taste as the humour is off the wall and a bit perverse and skewed. Not something you would drag your mum off to see. My wife and I loved it as did the rest of the crowd. Better tickets and a seat a bit closer to the front of the house would have enhanced the enjoyment, but it was a last minute decision to try and get tickets and options were limited.

From Wikipedia....

The League of Gentlemen is a British comedy television series that premiered on BBC Two in 1999. The show is set in Royston Vasey, a fictional town in Northern England, originally based on Alston, Cumbria and follows the lives of bizarre characters, most of whom are played by three of the show's four writers—Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton, and Reece Shearsmith—who, along with Jeremy Dyson, formed the League of Gentlemen comedy troupe in 1995. The series originally aired for three series from 1999 until 2002 followed by a film in 2005. A three-part revival mini-series was broadcast in December 2017 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the group's first appearance on BBC Radio 4.

Kinky Boots 

A birthday trip for my wife to London's West End which was enjoyed with our two daughters. Not that I get to the theatre very often, but it was amazing and the best live show I've seen in many years. We enjoyed the film a couple of years ago, but this was better. All based around a true story of a Northampton shoe factory close to going out of business and re-inventing themselves as suppliers to the transgender market with - wait for it - kinky boots!

I do like Cyndi Lauper's music - True Colors, Time After Time, Girls Just Want to Have Fun etc etc and it was great to hear some new material from her. She hasn't lost her touch at all.

From the musical's website.....

Since winning the 2016 Olivier Award for Best New Musical, Kinky Boots is the winner of every major Best Musical award and is the hottest show in town!

With songs by Grammy® and Tony® winning pop icon Cyndi Lauper, this fabulous musical celebration is about the friendships we discover, and the belief that you can change the world when you change your mind.

Kinky Boots takes you from the factory floor to the glamorous catwalks of Milan. Charlie Price, played by Oliver Tompsett (Wicked, We Will Rock You), is struggling to live up to his father’s expectations and continue the family business of Price & Son. With the shoe factory’s future hanging in the balance, help arrives in the unlikely but spectacular form of Lola, played by Simon-Anthony Rhoden, a fabulous performer in need of some sturdy new stilettos.


  1. I'm very glad you're enjoying The Handmaid's Tale, Col. It's one of those stories that really stays with you, I think. Happy to hear that you enjoyed Kinky Boots, too. I very much want to see that one, but haven't yet had the opportunity.

    1. Hopefully, we'll get Handmaid's done and dusted this month. I'd recommend Kinky Boots if you can catch up with it Margot. I really liked the soundtrack and the storyline.

  2. Col – I haven’t been to a stage show in quite a few years. As for horror movies, they don’t do much for me. Most are about as much fun as having someone sneak up and poke you with a stick. But as a kid I had a terrific nightmare after watching a monster movie on TV and dreamed Godzilla stomped our playground.

    1. Elgin, we don't go to a show very often - two in three days at the end of the month was remarkable. I think I enjoy a horror movie evening with my children more than I let on. It's as much fun for them watching me and my reactions as it is watching the film.

  3. A lot of variety in your watching this month. I don't know about The Sinner but I like Bill Pullman a lot. I know I don't want to see The Handmaid's Tale but I have always been a fan of Elizabeth Moss.

    Our most recent viewing was The Drowning Pool with Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward.

    1. Bill Pullmann was excellent in the series. (Now finished) I had to look Moss up - I'll be truthful I didn't know who she was. I guess I saw her in High-rise but I didn't particularly enjoy that film.

      I'll have to add The Drowning Poll to my ever-expanding list of films to catch.

      We did view one more in August, but inexplicably I forgot to post on it. Tag with Jeremy Renner.

    2. Elizabeth Moss was in West Wing (President's daughter) and I loved her in that but have not seen anything else she was in. She did one crime fiction short series I would like to see. I do like Jeremy Renner (the Mission Impossible movies and Bourne Legacy).

    3. I heard good things about the West Wing (I like Martin Sheen), but I think I would have been in a minority in the household trying to watch it. I don't think it would have appealed to the rest of the family. I've enjoyed Renner's performances in the MI films, I never saw his outing as Bourne - one day hopefully.