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This Week: A Serious Case of the Mandela Effect

Here's what the Agents of Doux are watching this week.

Billie Doux: I was a bit freaked by the announcement that they've cast Mary and John Winchester. I was hoping it was going to be Amy Gumenick and Matt Cohen...

but I guess, considering the longevity of Supernatural, they're too old for the parts now, and OMG. I'm not sure how I feel about this new spinoff. Spinoffs don't seem to work with this show.

Mikey Heinrich: I have to agree. Supernatural spinoffs seem to be cursed. Appropriately enough. I just mentioned this in the comments to last week's discussion, but has anyone watched The Thick of It? Is it worth checking out?

An Honest Fangirl: I'm very wary about the spinoff, unfortunately. Ignoring the fact that it sounds like they’re completely changing canon with regards to how John and Mary met, and ignoring the fact that the emphasis is on their "epic love story" when we were also told that John and Mary were manipulated by Heaven into falling in love in the first place, AND ignoring the fact that John didn’t know about monsters and hunting until after Mary died and he learned from Missouri...

Yeah. I don’t know. Maybe it’ll be fantastic and run for 15 seasons! But all I can think about is how much I wish we got Wayward Sisters instead.

Mikey, I haven’t heard of The Thick of It, so can’t say either way.

Mikey Heinrich: My entire knowledge of it is that it's a British political comedy in which Peter Capaldi drops the F-Bomb with truly epic regularity and enthusiasm. That's probably reason enough to watch it, now that I say that out loud. I know it's a minefield to say this kind of thing, but I really think that Peter Capaldi is the best actor that's ever played the Doctor. He's just so good in everything. There's a case to be made for Peter Davison. I don't know, maybe I just like Peters.

Easy there...

An Honest Fangirl: Oh, that is a minefield. Though I need to ask a clarifying question: are you saying he’s the best Doctor or the best actor just in general notwithstanding the fact that someone may have played a better Doctor than him? I feel like those are both two completely separate minefields.

Also have nothing to do with the stated reason of this thread. (I haven’t really watched anything, mostly played video games this week. Strange Horticulture is a very lovely, cozy puzzle game, by the way. Oh, and I guess I painted a bunch too. I discovered paint by number canvases and they’re so much fun and actually come out super well?!)

Mikey Heinrich: Agreed. Totally separate minefields :) I meant actor in general, notwithstanding how one might feel about his portrayal of the Doctor or quality of his era. (Although I do like both.)

Sunbunny: I believe In the Thick of It inspired Veep. I don’t really care for either, if I’m being honest. I’m not a prude or anything but super repetitive cursing is a writing pet peeve of mine. Buy a thesaurus.

I have so much love for Peter Capaldi, but David Tennant’s a damn fine actor, too. Good Omens season two please be good!

Mikey Heinrich: True. I'm just about to start a rewatch of Good Omens. I got into a discussion with a guy at work that I didn't know very well, and it turns out he's as big a fan of both the book and show as I am.

Victoria Grossack: This week of TV watching has been odd. When I change continents, I usually change the language so that I'm watching in the local language (in this case, French) but with English captions. It primes my brain.

However, on this occasion, I could not get Netflix to go back to English, so I watched the last few episodes of Travelers in French. Since then, I have been rewatching Lucifer, because Netflix was being so difficult, and I prefer I show I already know if working on another language. I finally figured out a workaround – it will accept the language change if I do Netflix on my laptop. I'm still rewatching Lucifer, in French, but now I have a choice.

Also, I watched, using Youtube, the first episode of Servant of the People. That's the comedy show of Volodymyr Zelenskyy, playing the president of Ukraine, before he became the actual president of Ukraine. The first episode was actually quite good. I'm not ready to commit to reviewing it yet, because a first episode can be good, while others are not, and because I'm not sure I have access to the other episodes, but I really did enjoy it.

Joseph Santini: What video games are you playing, Fangirl?

As I mentioned last week, I watched No Way Home. I was not whelmed. I honestly felt like the film was badly written and presented. I’m a Spider-man fan, and the notion to use the multiverse to bring all the films together was amazing. There were indeed many great moments, and the three Spider-men had nice energy.

With all this set up and energy they still couldn’t pull together a coherent plot. It was circular and repetitive and some things didn’t make sense. Maybe they just tried to do too many things. I felt like Dr. Strange too easily said yes to the magic in the first place, and Peter too easily gave in to the false persecution and claims he murdered Mysterio. They pulled off a coherent ending but by that time my mind was all tied up.

My Father Brown watch continues and I’m getting tempted to do reviews on the episodes or seasons if there’s any interest. Most of this week will be statistics for work, though.

Sunbunny and Mikey, I love Good Omens and worship Terry Pratchett! The show was totally not what I expected and totally wonderful.

An Honest Fangirl: Strange Horticulture, which I mentioned earlier. It’s a very charming, cozy puzzle game where you run a magical plant shop and have to figure out what plant will fulfill your clients needs.

I also started replaying Paradise Killer, which recently got a free content update. You take the role of Lady Love Dies, an immortal detective who is also part of an immortal cult devoted solely to bringing about Paradise in their pocket dimension by reviving hibernating gods and human sacrifice and fighting demons. It’s mostly point and click adventure, a mix of platforming, 80s vaporwave visuals and music, and completely off the wall world building and characters.

Also one of the characters is a woman with a goat head (which was gifted to her as a reward for her devotion to the gods.) She is held up as the absolute standard of beauty. She’s awesome. The game (pretty clearly) is not for everyone, but it’s a lot of fun.

Also Crusader Kings 3, which recently got a new DLC and other updates. Another one of my favorites, even if I’m still hesitating to recommend it yet. It needs another 3ish years of DLCs to be really good, but that’s standard for Paradox grand Strategy Games.

Mark Greig: If anyone wants to watch a really good comedy about British politics without lots of excessive swearing then I strongly recommend Yes, Minister and its sequel, Yes, Prime Minister. It might be over 40 years old now, but it is still hilarious and often painfully relevant.

Victoria Grossack: Mark, I love Yes, Minister and Yes, Prime Minister. Servant of the People reminds a little of it but I am only three episodes in, so I'm still reserving my reactions.

Mikey Heinrich: I'm kind of enjoying the way that this is hashing out as a very subdued debate re: Excessive Swearing - Flaw or Feature?

Shari: I don't have much to contribute this week. I watched the season finale of Star Trek Discovery. There weren't many surprises other than a certain someone's return and another someone's guest appearance that was ruined for me by Twitter. Or was it Instagram? Plus there was The Flash. So far, I've been pleasantly surprised by the season. More details to follow in my full review which should be up shortly. And I'm still watching The Endgame. Just when the rigid structure of each episode was beginning to annoy me, they changed it up. I may not love the show but it is addictive. If I finish all my writing duties this weekend, I would really like to catch up on The Gilded Age and check out The Adam Project.

Billie Doux: Shari, I saw The Adam Project and liked it. Much Back to the Future-like time travel fun.

Baby M: I binged the rest of 86, and I plan to write a season review. Short take: some really pretty artwork, interesting characters, and there’s a lot more going on beneath the surface. Details to follow.

Sunbunny: Right now I'm working on Daredevil but taking breaks from the violence with Star Wars: The Clone Wars which is... also surprisingly violent (no blood, but a surprising number of decapitations for a children's cartoon). My goal is to be done with the series by the time Obi-Wan Kenobi premieres in May. I really recommend it, it's very well done. No Grogu, but I'm coping.

Mark Greig: Peacemaker finally became (legally) available on this side of the pond so decided to watch that along with The Suicide Squad. Really enjoyed both, TSS more because it had Harley Quinn, a ranting Peter Capaldi, and Starro the Conqueror!

Mikey Heinrich: Oh my lanta. So last night I checked out the first two episodes of Minx on HBO Max. Yes, for exactly the reason you're thinking. I'm shallow. But I was shocked by how good it is. It's smart, funny, really well made, and holy crap so much male nudity. SO much.

An Honest Fangirl: I watched two movies last night! The Kingsman and Halloween Kills. The Kingsman was... well, it was a Kingsman movie. They have a certain formula at this point. It was fun enough, even if it was making some statements about violence versus pacifism and what is a gentleman versus what is a good man that I found to be a little disconcerting. Also I couldn’t help but think about the events of the first movie and how far this organization and the leadership will fall. But it was fun. Definitely my least favorite of the three movies, but it did have one moment that actually made me yell “No!” at the screen when a certain character died. And it had Djimon Hounsou, who is one of my favorite actors who is criminally underrated and underused.

I liked Halloween Kills a lot more. It does suffer from being the middle movie of a trilogy in that you already know that any “wins” by the heroes are going to be reversed by the end, but isn’t that horror? You already know that the good guys are going to lose in one way or another. It shifted the attention away from just a handful of people and focused on the entire town’s reaction to Michael and the effect that he has on society as a larger entity. I’m not sure if it always worked? But it was a very interesting tactic, especially depending on what larger, metaphorical/allegorical meaning you decide that Michael/The Shape is representing. The kills were great. Awesome practical effects. I think that it'll make for better viewing once the third movie is out and you can watch them all back to back in a kind of pseudo miniseries? Especially if the next one continues the trend of picking up right where the previous one left off.

Lamounier: Joseph, I liked No Way Home more than you did, but I agree with most of your criticisms.

Joseph Santini: Lamounier, for me Tobey Maguire was the saving grace of the film. I always liked his portrayal of the more mature Spider-man best, and to be honest I think he’s the best looking of all the Spider-men; I haven’t been too excited by the push to turn Spider-man into the junior Avenger because it seems like he’ll be trapped in the same stories again and again. Which in this movie he kinda was!

Lamounier: I prefer Andrew Garfield's Spider-man. I would love it if he got his third solo movie.

So, this happened this week:

For some reason, I've been curious about The Leftovers for a while... I was browsing through the blog a few weeks ago, and I came across the show page. Three seasons, 28 episodes, all of it reviewed. By Billie. It seemed that she really enjoyed the series. And I thought, "Well, I'll give it a chance."

Today I finally watched the pilot, and afterwards I went to read her review. There I was, looking for the series page on Doux Reviews' featured page and... the show wasn't listed there. That was weird. Why did Billie pull the show out of the main page, I asked myself. So I went to the All Shows page, found the link to The Leftovers page and then... not only are there only two reviews, Billie actually hated the pilot.

What happened? Did I come from a parallel dimension where Billie loved The Leftovers? In which case, hi, everyone from this dimension, nice to meet you all. :)

I just wanted to share this little story because I was so sure we had full coverage of The Leftovers. I don't think I ever had such a serious case of the Mandela Effect. I distinctly remember the show page and the little introductory text praising the series.

It is kind of appropriate that watching a series about people being raptured made me switch dimensions.

Billie Doux: Lamounier, I love this SO much. I sort of wish you'd printed out all of those reviews when you had them so that I'd have reviews for the entire series.

So what are you guys watching this week? Any opinions to contribute?


  1. I was really hesitant to disclose something so personal, but I guess I should come clean: I watched an episode of Is It Cake? And I might watch another one tonight.

    (Spoiler: sometimes it is cake!)

  2. Wow, another Paradox gamer on Doux Reviews.

  3. Armando Ianucci was responsible for both The Thick Of It and Veep, the latter of which I actually really liked. Ianucci is really good at creating these hilarious moments of pure unbridled chaos where the characters are screaming at each other to try to fix a problem only to cause even more problems to pop up, like plugging leaks in a sinking ship. And the curse words never bothered me since I found Veep's insults to be pretty creative at times.

    I just started watching The Shield and it's been pretty good so far, if a bit more procedural than I was expecting.



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