The Blog Formerly Known as Rebel Prince

Cult TV, Gen Y rants, and endless opera.

Archive for April, 2012

Hitchcock Reviews: “Vertigo” (1958)

Posted by therebelprince on April 28, 2012

Barbara Bel Geddes in “Vertigo”

Welcome back to my Hitchcock reviews. This week, I’m narrowing the focus to just one film: Vertigo.

“Only one is a wanderer; two together are always going somewhere.”

– Madeleine, Vertigo

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Hitchcock Reviews: The TV Episodes

Posted by therebelprince on April 21, 2012

This week, in my complete Hitchcock reviews, I thought I’d take a break from films to have a look at Hitchcock’s contribution to television. Here, from 1955, the great director became a household name, thanks to his TV series Alfred Hitchcock Presents.

“Next thing you know, they’ll be televising the whole thing.”

— Captain Wiles, “The Trouble with Harry”

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Hitchcock Reviews: 1955 – 1956

Posted by therebelprince on April 14, 2012

Jerry Mathers in “The Trouble with Harry”

Welcome back to my series of complete Hitchcock reviews. This week we look at three novel works from the mid-50s, sandwiched in between the string of successes that was the early ’50s, and the great works to come.

“Remember, you will only have time for just one shot. If you need another, the risk is yours.”

— “The Man Who Knew Too Much”

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In Defence of the Sitcom

Posted by therebelprince on April 11, 2012

Khandi Alexander, Dave Foley, and Phil Hartman in “NewsRadio”

I have a lot of free time at the moment. I could use this to write, to go to the gym, to work on those thousand paper cranes that I’ve been meaning to get around to… Instead, I watch classic sitcoms. And all this time spent in front of the idiot box has got me thinking about laugh tracks: they’re something most older audiences took for granted, but which far too many people my age are willing to write off as “dated”, “fake”, “patronising”, and what have you. These can all be true (anyone who ever watched travesties like Less Than Perfect or According to Jim can attest), but it’s by no means universal. The laugh track is a vital part of sitcom history, and I think it’s more important than many would like to believe. Read the rest of this entry »

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Hitchcock Reviews: 1953 – 1955

Posted by therebelprince on April 7, 2012

A shot from “I Confess”

Welcome back to the latest in my series of reviews of Alfred Hitchcock’s filmography. After his experimental 1940s, Hitchcock’s 1950s were an era of more traditional blockbusters – at least, traditional by Hitchcock’s standards…

“Do you really believe in the perfect murder?”

– Margot Wendice, “Dial M For Murder”

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Game of Thrones: “The Night Lands”

Posted by therebelprince on April 6, 2012

Aiden Gillen as Petyr 'Littlefinger' Baelish

Cersei gets all the best lines, but there are great moments all around in The Night Lands.

(As with last week’s review, I’ll save any potential spoiler-y comments for a section after the review proper.)

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Posted by therebelprince on April 4, 2012

Originally posted on my other blog, the Agatha Christie Reader. Ignore any comments that relate to that project!

The Agatha Christie Reader

Greetings, kind readers. Since I started this project, my mind has kept hurling new ideas at me, so I figure I’ll just keep mixing things up. Today, I’ll review the early years of the now-classic ITV series, and we’ll be back with some more book reviews tomorrow.

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Game of Thrones: “The North Remembers”

Posted by therebelprince on April 2, 2012

Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister

Welcome back to Game of Thrones. Is there a more hyped series of 2012? Hot on the heels of my rewatch of season one, below are my thoughts on the second season premiere, The North Remembers.

[For ease of reading, the review proper will be spoiler-free – beyond events of this episode, obviously. At the very end of each week’s review, I’ll post any thoughts for those who have read the book series.]

“It must be hard for you… to be the disappointing child.”
— Tyrion Lannister

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Ad-Free TV, or a world without windows

Posted by therebelprince on April 2, 2012

Thought of the day: is life better or worse without television commercials?

Jenna-Louise Coleman. She’ll be joining “Doctor Who” in nine months. For some reason, the BBC would like you to know that now.

We live in an era where the commercial is becoming redundant, if not to the casual making-dinner-and-chasing-the-children viewers (who are assumedly the audience for Two and a Half Men and its ilk), then at least for semi-serious TV viewers. Increasingly, people are TiVo-ing their programs; if you wait ten minutes, you can watch the episode ad-free! Alternatively, there are a host of downloading options – legal or otherwise – allowing people in other countries to enjoy programming the same day it airs in its homeland. (There are, of course, numerous ways for networks to circumvent this: Australian networks have begun showing popular American shows in the same week as their U.S. broadcast to avoid losing viewers, for instance.  Beyond this, there’s the rise of product placement – or “vertical integration”, which I assumed was just a quote from 30 Rock but is probably a real term.)

Increasingly, I’ve begun to realise that I literally never view television commercials. Most material that I view is older (my current repertoire includes The Dick Van Dyke Show and Carnivale), and new TV is watched via TiVo, DVD, or download. The only sport I watch is baseball on cable, and I’m an internet news kinda guy. Yet, while I was happy to be without ads, I’ve now begun to worry that I’m missing out on a fair chunk of pop culture, not to mention a very different atmosphere when watching new TV.

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