Posts Tagged ‘television


Nerd Multiverse: Netflix’s Haunting of Hill House

So, we’re back. Only took a couple years.

I’m firing this back up, and it’s going to be a place covering a wide variety of things, from the kids, to society to, yes, nerd stuff.

We’re starting off with that last thing because I happen to have ready-made content and 1) I’m lazy and 2) excited about it.

So here is my podcast review of the Netflix series “The Haunting of Hill House.”

You can download it here because I can never get the Podbean player to embed in an article on WordPress.

Feel free to subscribe via Itunes, Podbean or Stitcher.

The many “look there are ghosts you don’t see” articles I have not seen mention which really got me geeked out. It’s a small thing but really hearkened back to the 1963 movie “The Haunting” which was also based on Shirley Jackson’s excellent novel, “The Haunting of Hill House.”

Get ready for creepy.

So Hugh and Olivia are trying to find young Nell, who has disappeared in Hill House during a storm (this takes part in a flashback in back in the 1990s).

They search upstairs and, at one point, Hugh decides he’s going to look elsewhere.

Statue 1

I’ve lightened this so the whole thing is clearer.

Also, sidenote, Hugh says “I’ll be right back” and for goodness’ sake you never say that in a haunted house.

As you can see, the statue over Hugh’s right shoulder (camera left) is looking intently at its a bowl in its hand. What is in the bowl? What is so interesting? We can only speculate, but my guess, mold.

Olivia, the flighty, somewhat possessed mom, walks into a room near the statue, checks out some broken glass and then heads back out into the hallway to keep looking for her daughter.

But wait, something has changed.

Statue 2

Whatever was captivating about that bowl isn’t as interesting as Olivia.

One can only imagine the statue is wondering where Olivia bought that dress.

Olivia heads down the hallway where things happen but Nell still doesn’t show up, and then she walks back towards the statues.

Statue 3


It’s a small, subtle thing and yes, I spoiled it, but I wanted to use it as a great example of how well and thoughtfully made this show is – including set design.

And consider that even though I was looking for crap like this, because it is something I loved in the original movie (The Haunting 1963 not the crapfest from 1999), I still missed a ton of stuff.

Watch the show, it’s fantastic.

And yeah-


Shhhhhh She’s Watching Doctor Who……

image via the Coventry Telegraph

So as we speak The Wife—my wonderful, charming wife—is watching the first season of the reboot of Doctor Who.

I think she’s four or so episodes in.

I’m afraid to go watch with her and disturb the vibe. I think she’s enjoying it.

It’ll get to the Daleks at some point and she’ll skip the episode because the voices hurt her ears, but the boys in the house are hopeful the watching continues.

I’m pretty sure if she gets through Eccleston and into Tennant we’ll have her!

And then she will never escape!

She’s a geek girl, mind you so Doctor Who was an inevitability but she fought it because—well it can be awfully goofy. And the Dalek voices are grating.

But she got talked into the Battlestar Galactica reboot, Shaun of the Dead and Torchwood, loves both the book and television versions of Game of Thrones, reads Harry Dresden books and bought me all three movie posters of the Lord of the Rings flicks—then  framed them. She’s a huge Firefly fan.

So as The Agent said to Neo in The Matrix:

It was only a matter of time before the Big Blue Box sucked her in.


pps- I hope they go in a whole new direction – a female or non-white Doctor. Would be fun.

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Cutting the Cable Cord

So when we moved coasts (West to East), we decided to cut the cable cord.

Actually my wife wanted to, while I was more reluctant.

Four years later, I don’t miss it much and as it stands she was once again right.

Being in a beach house with cable reminds me jut how little I miss it. Seriously, how much crap I don’t want to watch can you produce?

Lots, apparently.

We do Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime streaming and while we miss some shows live (especially ones we get into late), those are few and far between. Not to mention the fact that we get to watch when we want to watch.

With DVRs, streaming and other techie goodness, that’s the way of the future and frankly, Hollywood and the Cable Companies are just spitting in the wind as they try to prevent it.

The only issue has ever been sports, but there are a ton of ways around that, not the least of which is heading to a bar.

The added benefit of cutting the cord has been that the kids are less inundated with ads, resulting in less bouts of MEMEMEMEMEMEMEMENEEDNEEDNEED that seem to happen when they have full TV for a week.

I don’t think they miss it. Hell, Alpha Tween started the vacation week pushing to go to the beach and specifically said he didn’t want to watch TV.

Not to say he hasn’t or won’t just that he wanted to do not watch.

Sometimes they get caught up in screen time with the Ipad or streaming anyway, but we’ve reduced it a bunch and will continue to especially during school.

I used to think we might be rare freaks for this, but turns out we aren’t.

This past weekend we went into Queens for a friend’s 4oth birthday and I met multiple people who had done the same. It was really surprising.

As a country, we appear to be pretty attached to our televisions, but that seems to be changing. People are cutting back on their cable and spending less and less money on it.

Now, it doesn’t mean we aren’t over-wired because, well here we are on a blog while I am on vacation and I’ve been on Twitter all day as well. We’re still pretty attached to our “stuff”.

However, we can and do control how and when we (and our kids) watch. The trick is to fill that non-screen time with activity – be it hunting for turtles like we did this afternoon or reading (our kids, thank goodness, are avid readers) or a million other things.

Do rather than watch. Not all the time but more often.

Computer games and screen time is fine. Sometimes, though, we let it take over our lives, especially television.

I’m thankful for Netflix, Hulu and the rest. For streaming sports when NBC gets around to airing the Olympics. For all the different ways we can get content delivered to us when we want it versus when “they” say we can have it.

For the chance to take control of our lives and choose to do other things.

I’m actually pretty happy we cut the cord, so much so that 99% of the time I don’t even think about it.

It’s nice to know that, apparently, we’re not alone.

I’d be curious how many of you don’t have cable or, even if you do,how much more you watch online than live. Let me know in the comments.

I’m off to the beach for a bit.

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What I’m Into:

Reading: Dead Beat by Jim Butcher Listening to: The Heist, Macklemore Watching: Damages