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The Playlist

Review & Recap: 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 10, 'Mhysa' Draws Things To A Close (For Now)

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • June 10, 2013 10:02 AM
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  • 34 Comments
Well, after last week's horrible trauma, which I'm not sure everyone has gotten over, "Game of Thrones" returns with a final episode of the third season, "Mhysa," that lets us lick our wounds and offers some uplifting moments to temper all that violence and nihilism (don't worry, there's still plenty of violence and nihilism too). And we even get a few small moments of justice and a tiny bit of revenge on the part of one of the Starks. As for tying up loose ends, I didn't have high hopes for this episode's ability to draw all of its many disparate story lines to satisfying close, but, as directed by David Nutter, this episode addresses most of our characters and brings them to a place of certainty, at least, until the next season.

Review & Recap: 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 9, 'The Rains Of Castamere' Is A Shocker

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • June 3, 2013 9:57 AM
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  • 51 Comments
So is everyone as horribly traumatized by episode 9, "The Rains of Castamere" as I am? We can work through this together. Recap therapy. We can do it. Yes, once again "Game of Thrones" lived up to its Penultimate Episode Promise of being bananas batshit crazy insane! We now must always fear episode 9, because you can't trust anyone in these games of thrones, especially director David Nutter, who helmed this truly shocking episode. Trying to look past the events of the plot though, it's an action-packed episode, as swords clash in Westeros, across the narrow sea and in the North. It's also an expertly plotted and paced episode, building to an unexpected and effective climax, with some unbelievably stellar performances to boot.

Review & Recap: 'Game of Thrones' Season 3, Episode 8, 'Second Sons' is Goin' To the Chapel

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • May 20, 2013 4:33 AM
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  • 15 Comments
"Game of Thrones" has two things on its mind this week: love makin' and procreatin', and the result is an episode that's operating at a very different speed than the rest of the season. We barely see any of our regulars both old and new, and got to see a lot more of Danaerys Targaryen (like, literally A LOT) and spend some time celebrating the kickoff of wedding season in Westeros. It's once again directed by the excellent Michelle MacLaren, who helmed last week's episode, and really has an eye for staging and an ability to play with pace and focus, resting on characters for an extended period of time, rather than hopping around, which serves the latter half of this season well (also sexy time. And ass). So let's pour some wine and raise a toast to Episode 8, "Second Sons."

Review & Recap: 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 7 'The Bear and The Maiden Fair' Brings The Action

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • May 13, 2013 10:04 AM
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  • 7 Comments
Um, WUT, this episode RULED. High fives, all around my people. It had everything: Khaleesi being awesome with dragons, lots of sweet, sweet ass, zingers galore, and a muthafuckin' BEAR FIGHT y'all. Directed by frequent "Breaking Bad" helmer Michelle McLaren, it was everything "Game of Thrones" wants to be and more -- sexy, bloody, and damn exciting. They were probably giving us all of this lovey dovey stuff to tide us over for the inevitable last-third-of-the-season-carnage we are about to experience. But for the moment, Episode 7 feels like makin' love, feels like makin' love to youuuuuu.

Recap: Christopher Guest's 'Family Tree' Gets Off To A Promising Start & Shows He Hasn't Lost His Touch

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 12, 2013 7:00 PM
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  • 0 Comments
It's been seven far-too-long years since the last feature effort from Christopher Guest, and besides a failed pilot for the U.S. adaptation of the U.K. hit "The Thick Of It" and appearing alongside his regular roster players in a sketch for the 2012 Oscars, not much as been heard from him. But the writer/director is back at HBO with "Family Tree," a new comedy series that finds him back within the faux-doc aesthetic (which seemingly every sitcom uses now) and best of all, still retaining his touch for beautifully deadpan humor, rich wordplay and characters as odd as they are lovable too. In short, Guest hasn't lost a step.

Review & Recap: The Scheming Continues In 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3, Episode 6 'The Climb'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • May 6, 2013 10:01 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Game of Thrones, Season 3, Varys, Little Finger
Welcome back Throne Gamers, whether you want to be or not! This week's episode, "The Climb," directed by Alik Sakharov, continues to dwell on the scheming and interpersonal machinations of those who happen to have a bit of power in Westeros, who are all desperately trying to pull one over on the person next to them just to save their own skin. No one seems to be in any sort of comfortable position, and all of the tricks they play on each other are borne out of sheer terror of being displaced in the power food chain. And that's the game of thrones, right? Sadly, there is little to no ass in this episode.

Recap: Memes & A Paul Simon Parody Does In The 'Veep'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 5, 2013 10:30 PM
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  • 2 Comments
The second season of "Veep" is finally on the upswing after stumbling out of the gate, with last week's episode showing what the writers can do with just a little bit of focus. And this week's "The Vic Allen Dinner" mostly takes the same tack, finding comedic potential in a simple premise and then driving to the hoop and while it might not be a slam dunk, it's a solid alley-oop.

Review: 'Manhunt' A Decent Companion To 'Zero Dark Thirty,' But Doesn't Stand On Its Own

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 1, 2013 6:03 PM
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  • 0 Comments
For a classified mission, executed in secret, and monumentally changing the face of the war of terror, there is an awful lot of public knowledge about the the hunt for and killing of Osama Bin Laden. Books, magazine articles and more have proliferated at a steady pace, and then of course there's Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty," a feature film account of the intensive search for the terrorist leader all the way up the raid on the compound in Abbottabad. That film gave a narrative to the decades long investigation, involving dozens of people, multiple branches of government, false leads and more, and turned into a compelling piece of historical cinema. As such, it takes some liberties for dramatic purposes, but the basic arc is there, however for those looking for an account from those who were actually involved, "Manhunt: The Inside Story Of The Hunt For Bin Laden" doesn't quite live up the comprehensive documentary the title suggests.

Review & Recap: Magic Returns To Westeros In 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 5 'Kissed By Fire'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • April 29, 2013 10:00 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Greetings, Gameheads. Thanks for reading my little rant last week about media images of violence. It's just important to talk about, and I think one of the things that "Game of Thrones" does really well is offer up those topics for discussion. I mean, like BODIES, right? They are so weird and gross and awesome and cool, and thank you Throne Games for letting us to reconcile a bit of that corporeal tension that is constantly surrounding us in the zeitgeist. Speaking of serving body, this episode is ass-tastic, so let's get booty rockin' everywhere in the comments (who's got the best butt? Trick question, they all have the best butt, I can't choose).

Recap: 'Veep' Delivers A "Robust" New Episode

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 28, 2013 10:30 PM
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  • 0 Comments
If the first two episodes of the second season of "Veep" left us wanting for sharper humor, richer characterization and plots tackling some higher stakes, then tonight's effort is the one we've been waiting for. While the show has a tendency to get bogged down in subplots that often feel saggy, "Hostages" is an example of lean, efficient writing that comes together in a tight knot of fast jokes, and story threads that pay off. It's certainly one of the better entries in the season so far, and it's probably the only show you'll watch this year where the word "robust" plays such a central role.

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