Pokémon Movie- “Hoopa and the Clash of Ages” Review

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The latest Pokémon movie features many legendary Pokémon clashing, doughnuts as a plot device, a bottle as another plot device and a reference to the Battle Frontier story arc.

The film officially introduces Pokémon fans to the legendary Pokémon Hoopa (not counting a short side episode released prior to the film), while also featuring legendary Pokémon we’ve seen before (including but not limited to Kyogre, Groudon, Rayquaza, Dialga, Palkia, Giratina, Kyurem, Lugia, Arceus, Latias and Latios among others).

Hoopa was a really interesting Pokémon that I would like to see more of outside of the movie. The character was full of humour and quips (though I felt the writers over-used one or two of the gags), enjoyed doughnuts and had some very interesting abilities. The ability to transport things (like people or objects) through its rings was interesting, while in its Unbound form (hidden in the shadow bottle) it was the opposite of its usual self as it was terrifying and powerful. These abilities made Hoopa a very interesting Pokémon to watch.

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I have to confess, I was worried going into this movie that the writers had gone overboard with the number of legendary Pokémon and it would take away from viewers’ attention on the story-line. It turned out I couldn’t have been more wrong as all of them ended up adding to the story-line, though a few of the legendary Pokémon could’ve had more screen-time. The twist that having so many in one place affected time and space due to so many legendary Pokémon being summoned to appear in one place was an excellent idea and almost resulted in the destruction of Dahara City, so the legendary Pokémon did have an impact on the story which was a concern of mine going into the movie.

That said, I still would’ve preferred if it was just Groudon, Kyogre, Rayquaza and Hoopa as the legendary Pokémon like the original promotional material had seemingly being hinting at (I don’t have any problems with the others they featured but it would’ve been nice if it was just referencing the Hoenn region).

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One area I feel the Pokémon movies struggle sometimes is the supporting characters, who usually only feature in the movie they appear in and don’t make any appearances in the main series. However, this movie used less supporting characters which I felt was better as we got to explore the characters in more detail. Both Baraz and Mirai were great supporting characters in the present and had a lot of depth and back-story, while the flashbacks revealing Ghris’ story were also great to watch as well. This movie definitely shows that having less supporting characters means you can develop the characters you do have more.

Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie don’t have any particularly outstanding moments in the movie, but Ash’s dynamic with Hoopa was entertaining to watch. The standout moment for me with the main cast is when Ash gets taken over by Hoopa’s Unbound form (albeit briefly) which reminded me of when Ash was possessed by the King of Pokélantis in the Battle Frontier episode “Battling the Enemy Within”. I wish that we got to see more of Ash being controlled by Hoopa’s Unbound form as it felt like that scene wrapped up too quickly.

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The battle between Hoopa and Hoopa’s Unbound form was really interesting to watch with all of the legendary Pokémon involved. I liked how the writers didn’t focus on the scale of the legendary Pokémon conflict and did keep the focus on Hoopa which I appreciated.

In my opinion, this was an excellent Pokémon movie. Hoopa was a really interesting new legendary Pokémon, but we also see a lot of other popular legendary Pokémon featured as well. The supporting characters were great and the battle Hoopa and its Unbound form was a really interesting battle to watch. The connection to “Battling the Enemy Within” was a really nice touch to the movie that I wish lasted longer.

My rating: 9/10

By Ruari Williamson

*The opinions in this article are those of the writer and do not represent the views of all of the Everything Geek Podcast staff*.

Star Wars Rebels Episode Review- “Stealth Strike”

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The latest episode of Star Wars: Rebels sees a bond form between Kanan Jarrus and Captain Rex, a new Imperial ship and a number of references to the Prequel era.

In a season that has (so far) mainly focused on telling the back-stories of certain characters, the complicated relationship with Kanan Jarrus and Captain Rex has been one of the few concurrent themes of the season so far. While it has been a strained relationship up until now, this episode handles their dynamic perfectly and by the time they’re friends at the end of the episode the viewers are really satisfied to have seen their growth.

The growth itself is fantastic to watch throughout the episode. The start of the episode shows that Kanan still doesn’t trust Rex (including deliberately referring to him and Stormtroopers being the same multiple times), then Kanan is sad when Rex seemingly sacrifices himself for the group (including referring to Rex as his ‘friend’) and the salute between Kanan and Rex to end the episode was a fitting ending to the episode.

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The episode introduces us to a new Imperial Officer called Admiral Brom Titus, who leads a new Imperial ship called the Interdictor cruiser. While Titus himself wasn’t a very menacing character (though he did have a great voice), the cruiser is able to pull ships out of hyperspace which causes numerous problems for the rebels in this episode. The ship is (according to Sabine earlier in the episode) likely a prototype so it makes sense if we don’t see much more of the Interdictors in this era, especially considering the rebels destroyed the cruiser in this episode.

Fun fact: Admiral Brom Titus is voiced by Derek Partridge, who becomes the latest actor to appear in both Star Wars and Star Trek (he appeared in one episode of Star Trek: The Original Series).

In terms of other characters, we see how Ezra’s Jedi skills have grown tremendously in this episode and this episode features the most screen-time for Commander Jun Sato so far.

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The humour in this episode was stellar, with Kanan and Rex having the funniest moments of the episode. Did anyone else laugh when Rex threw the helmet at a Stormtrooper? Chopper also comes in with a few funny moments, with Ezra stunning Kanan and Rex being another laugh out loud moment.

The references to the Prequel era were a nice treat in this episode. Captain Rex mentions Commander Cody to Kanan after giving the Imperials a bunch of codes and Sato tells Titus that they’re members of the Corporate Alliance (a Separatist group that was active in the Clone Wars). Maybe a number of Separatists are still active in some form during this era as well?

In my opinion, this was another excellent episode of Star Wars: Rebels. It was great to see Kanan and Rex put their differences aside and grow as characters, while still providing a lot of humour to the episode. It was nice to finally see a new Imperial Officer in Admiral Brom Titus and the Interdictor cruiser was a great ship. The references to the Prequel era were great to hear.

My rating: 9/10

By Ruari Williamson

*The opinions in this article are those of the writer and do not represent the views of all of the Everything Geek Podcast staff*.

The Walking Dead Episode Review- “Heads Up”

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The latest episode of The Walking Dead sets up the mid-season finale and reveals the fate of fan-favourite character Glenn Rhee, who was presumed dead in the third episode of this season titled “Thank You”.

I have to be honest, the reveal that Glenn was alive was never going to please everyone (and I’m not referring to fans of the show who may not like his character). With Glenn and Nicholas surrounded by Walkers on top of a dumpster there were only so many ways the writers could save Glenn. In fact, I had narrowed it down to two ways prior to the episode:

  1. Reveal that (following Nicholas shooting himself) the rest of the sequence was a hallucination of Glenn’s. This would’ve been a very bad move considering most twists involving hallucinations are executed badly.
  2. Reveal that the Walkers were eating Nicholas (who fell on top of Glenn) and Glenn squeezes out from underneath and into the dumpster. This was the only alternative option that I thought was logical and it turned out to be the idea the writers went for.

Also, when watching the scene you would’ve had to pay attention to where the Walkers fell after Glenn shot the ones trying to reach towards him underneath the dumpster. All of the Walkers he shoots end up blocking any way through to him underneath so that made it plausible that he would survive.

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The episode also sees the return of Enid, who hadn’t been seen since “JSS” (the episode that aired before “Thank You”). It was interesting watching the scenes with Glenn and Enid as neither character has had any interactions until now, but I have a feeling that this story element was done for a reason. Theory alert: Is it possible that Glenn and Maggie will adopt Enid like they did with Sophia in the comic series?

While not major scenes in this episode, we do see a few scenes that could lead to something bigger in upcoming episodes- Rick, Michonne and Carol’s talk with Morgan is an interesting scene following his decision to let members of The Wolves leave (and subsequently they attacked Rick on the RV later). We also see Carol following Morgan and Denise to the cell that the Wolf is locked up in, before confronting Morgan about who he’s hiding in the cell.

Another interesting scene is Rick continuing to teach Ron how to shoot, which I still believe (as I speculated in a previous review) is going to end up being a bad decision in an upcoming episode. We see Ron following Carl with a gun in hand later in the episode.

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The final interesting scene is Deanna revealing her expansion plans to Rick and Michonne. Call me a conspiracy theorist but I believe this is foreshadowing that she will die in an upcoming episode…

The episode ends with a major twist. Viewers are treated to a moment of joy as Maggie Greene spots Glenn’s balloons in the sky, before the watchtower falls on top of the perimeter wall Rick and Tobin were working on earlier in the episode and the Walkers begin to pour into the Alexandria Safe-Zone.

In my opinion, this was another strong episode of The Walking Dead. While the episode is mostly a build-up for the mid-season finale, the fate of Glenn Rhee is revealed and I think the writers picked the best (arguably only) way there was to save him. We also see the return of Enid in this episode and the twist at the end leaves our hearts in our mouths going into the mid-season finale.

My rating: 8/10

By Ruari Williamson

Fun fact: The scene where Spencer Monroe uses the rope and almost falls into the herd is adapted from Issue 81 of the comic series.

*The opinions in this article are those of the writer and do not represent the views of all of the Everything Geek Podcast staff*.

Doctor Who Episode Review- “Face the Raven”

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The latest episode of Doctor Who sees the return of characters like Ashildr and Rigsy, as well as the death of companion Clara Oswald.

The writers made a great decision bringing Rigsy and Ashildr back for this episode. The writers gave a lot more depth to Rigsy’s character (which I felt was lacking a little in his first episode “Flatline”). The reveal that he has a new baby (Lucy) certainly added to the depth of his character. While I’m glad that Rigsy survived this episode, it wasn’t good news for another character who I’ll get to later in the review…

Before the start of this series, there was a lot of publicity surrounding Ashildr and how she would challenge The Doctor. We saw a lot of these challenges in “The Woman Who Lived”, but this episode added a lot more challenges that The Doctor had to endure because of Ashildr, making viewers wonder how The Doctor must feel knowing it was he who saved her life before. The role she played in Clara’s death (which I’ll be getting into in the next paragraph) will no doubt come back to haunt her should The Doctor encounter her again).

I’ve seen a mixed reaction to Clara’s death, not just in regard to the fans who liked and didn’t like her, but whether the fans felt she was given a good send-off. I think her death was handled brilliantly, if I’m being honest. One of the traits with Clara (which is something that’s a source of why certain fans don’t like her) is how similar she acts to The Doctor, so I found it fitting that she dies because she made a decision that The Doctor would make in being prepared to sacrifice herself for Rigsy. In saving Rigsy, she died because she didn’t think about the consequences of her actions, which led to the Quantum Shade killing her in an emotional moment in the episode. Clara’s speech to The Doctor before stepping outside to accept her death adds to the emotion of the scene.

Looking back over this series, it’s also interesting to note how Clara has been acting more careless since the death of Danny Pink in the Series 8 finale and that carelessness cost her in this episode.

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The episode ends on a sombre note following Clara’s death. The Doctor has been teleported far away from the town (and his location will only be revealed in the upcoming episodes) and Rigsy is seen putting graffiti on the TARDIS of a mural dedicated to Clara, with the TARDIS now empty following the death of Clara and the disappearance of The Doctor.

In my opinion, this was an excellent episode of Doctor Who. The death of companion Clara Oswald was handled really well in my opinion and I believe that she got a good send-off. The way the writers had her die because of trying to be like The Doctor fitted her character. The return of both Rigsy and Ashildr added to the episode and it was great to see both of them return in strong roles. The episode ends with a lot of questions for viewers to wonder. Where has The Doctor been teleported to? Will we see Ashildr again? We’ll have to wait and see to find out…

My rating: 9.5/10

By Ruari Williamson

Fun fact: This is the first episode of Doctor Who to feature a post-credits scene.

*The opinions in this article are those of the writer and do not represent the views of all of the Everything Geek Podcast staff*.

Pokémon XY Episode Review- “Lights! Camera! Pika!”

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The latest episode of Pokémon XY takes viewers away from the main series and treats fans to a heartfelt Pikachu special episode, while still staying canon to the Pokémon world.

The idea of taking a break from the events of the main series was an interesting decision on the part of the Pokémon writers (which I suspect is because several important episodes are coming up in the main series), so they decided to do this fun episode that is like a side-story. As you’ll understand more later on in the review I think this was an excellent decision.

The episode features a lot of Pikachu’s in cosplay (probably the largest number of Pikachu in an episode since the famous “Pikachu’s Goodbye”) and it was a treat to see so many Pikachu on the screen, while following a relevant storyline. It was a lot of fun seeing Pokémon in cosplays, especially with all of said Pokémon being Pikachu and the various costumes that were used for them (Super Pikachu, Pikachu Rock Star, Pikachu Belle, Pikachu Pop Star, Pikachu Ph. D and Pikachu Libre).

The episode also introduces two supporting characters that will likely be exclusive to this episode, Frank and Jean. Both characters were great additions to the long (and ever-growing) list of Pokémon characters. The personal nature of Frank’s back-story (including the flashbacks of himself with Pikachu and his wife) added a lot of depth to his character, while the constant ‘Pika’ jokes added a comedic side to his character as well (though I would argue that those jokes were overused after a while). While she doesn’t get as much screen-time, we do see how Jean really wants to help her grandfather (Frank) with his dream of creating a Pikachu movie.

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I think the episode utilised Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie really well in terms of their contributions to making Frank’s Pikachu movie a success. All of the roles they had made sense and you could tell the main characters really wanted to make the movie too, though with Ash’s Pikachu being the star how could they refuse?

Not only was the episode heartfelt, but the episode was packed with humour which added to the episode as well. The blooper reel at the end had me laughing all the way throughout the bloopers (particularly when Serena and Bonnie are messing up their lines) and the writers handled the humour fantastically in this episode for the most part (though they could have used Frank’s ‘Pika’ jokes less).

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In my opinion, this was a fantastic special episode of Pokémon XY. It takes viewers away from the main series for a special episode filled with Pikachu, heart, humour and more Pikachu. The costumes for all of the Pikachu were well detailed, Frank was a great supporting character and the blooper reel at the end of the episode was one of the funniest things I’ve seen on TV recently. If I had to change one thing, I would have preferred it if Frank’s ‘Pika’ jokes were used less but they were funny at first and otherwise the episode was excellent.

My rating: 9.5/10

By Ruari Williamson

Fun fact: This was the first Pokémon episode to use a Weezing since James released his in the episode “A Poached Ego”.

Fun fact 2: At the end of the episode, Ash and co. say “That’s all, folks!” This is a deliberate reference to the Looney Tunes cartoons.

*The opinions in this article are those of the writer and do not represent the views of all of the Everything Geek Podcast staff*.

New Captain America Civil War Synopsis Revealed

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Following the release of the first trailer and reveal of three posters, a brand new synopsis for Captain America: Civil War has been revealed.

The synopsis reads as follows:

“Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War finds Steve Rogers leading the newly formed team of Avengers in their continued efforts to safeguard humanity. But after another incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability, headed by a governing body to oversee and direct the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers, resulting in two camps—one led by Steve Rogers and his desire for the Avengers to remain free to defend humanity without government interference, and the other following Tony Stark’s surprising decision to support government oversight and accountability. Get ready to pick a side and join the nonstop action playing out on two fronts when Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War opens in U.S. theaters on May.”

Thoughts on the new synopsis?


By Ruari Williamson

Captain America Civil War Posters Released

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During the recent appearance of Chris Evans (Captain America) and Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man) on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the pair revealed three posters for next years’ Captain America: Civil War.

The reveal of the three posters accompanies the release of the first trailer for the film.

Captain America: Civil War is scheduled for release on May 6th, 2016.

Thoughts on the posters? Are you excited for the release of Captain America: Civil War?


By Ruari Williamson

First Captain America Civil War Trailer Released

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Marvel Studios have officially released the first trailer for Captain America: Civil War, due out in May 2016.

You can watch the trailer below:

“Captain America: Civil War picks up where Avengers: Age of Ultron left off, as Steve Rogers leads the new team of Avengers in their continued efforts to safeguard humanity. After another international incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability and a governing body to determine when to enlist the services of the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers while they try to protect the world from a new and nefarious villain.”

Captain America: Civil War is scheduled for release on May 6th, 2016.

Thoughts on the trailer? Are you excited for the release of Captain America: Civil War?

By Ruari Williamson

Marvel’s Doctor Strange Film has Officially Begun Production

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Production on Marvel’s Doctor Strange film has officially begun, as revealed by Marvel Studios.

The press release for the film reads as follows:

Marvel Studios announced today that production has begun on “Doctor Strange,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch (“Black Mass,”  “The Imitation Game”), Chiwetel Ejiofor (“12 Years a Slave,” “The Martian”), Rachel McAdams (“Southpaw,” “Sherlock Holmes”) and  Michael Stuhlbarg (“Steve Jobs,” “A Serious Man”)  with  Mads Mikkelsen (“Clash of the Titans,” “Casino Royale”)  and Academy Award® winner Tilda Swinton (“Michael Clayton,” “The Grand Budapest Hotel”).  The film, which opens in U.S. theaters on November 4, 2016, is directed by Scott Derrickson (“Sinister,” “The Exorcism of Emily Rose”). The film will be shot in several locations around the world, including London, New York, Hong Kong and Kathmandu, Nepal.

“Doctor Strange” follows the story of neurosurgeon Doctor Stephen Strange who, after a horrific car accident, discovers the hidden world of magic and alternate dimensions.

“Doctor Strange” is the latest film in Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Phase 3’s goal—over the course of four years and nine films—is to introduce audiences to new heroes and continue the adventures of fan favorites.

Marvel’s “Doctor Strange” is produced by Kevin Feige with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Charles Newirth, Stephen Broussard and Stan Lee serving as executive producers.

Director Scott Derrickson’s creative team also includes director of photography Ben Davis, B.S.C. (Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy”); production designer Charles Wood (Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy”); costume designer Alexandra Byrne (Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy”); editors Wyatt Smith (“Into the Woods,” Marvel’s “Thor: The Dark World”) and Sabrina Plisco, ACE (“Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium,” “Charlotte’s Web”); and visuals effects supervisor Stephane Ceretti (Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy”).

Based on the Marvel comic character who first appeared in “Strange Tales” Issue 110 published in July 1963, Marvel’s “Doctor Strange” continues the lineage of epic big-screen adventures chronicled in Marvel’s  “Iron Man,” “The Incredible Hulk,” “Iron Man 2,” “Thor,” “Captain America: The First Avenger,” “The Avengers,” “Iron Man 3,” “Thor: The Dark World,” “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” “Ant-Man” and the upcoming “Captain America: Civil War,” (May 6, 2016), “Guardians of the Galaxy 2” (May 5, 2017) and  “Thor: Ragnarok” (November 3, 2017).

Marvel Studios continued its unprecedented success this year with the May 1st release of “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” which recorded the second biggest opening weekend of all time with a $191.3 million box office. It has also been the #1 release in every country where it has opened and has grossed over $1.4 billion in global box office. On July 17, Marvel released “Ant-Man,” which has grossed to date over $518 million worldwide.

In 2014 Marvel Studios released “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” and “Guardians of the Galaxy,” the top-grossing domestic film of 2014 with $333.2 million and $772.8 million worldwide. “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” which broke the opening record for an April release by earning $95 million in its first weekend, went on to gross more than $711 million worldwide.

Doctor Strange is scheduled for release on November 4th, 2016.

Thoughts on this news? Are you looking forward to the Doctor Strange film?


By Ruari Williamson

Report- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 Trailer to Premier with Star Wars The Force Awakens

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Stephen Amell, who plays Casey Jones in the sequel to 2014’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film, has all but confirmed that the trailer will play in front of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens when the film is released.

Amell is quoted as saying the following:

“If you’re a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Fan, then you’re going to want to go to the theater in December before a relatively big movie that’s being released for a fantastic trailer.”

Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens is the only ‘big’ movie coming out next month, so while Amell didn’t name it it’s a no-brainer that it’s the film he was referring to. Captain America: Civil War and X-Men: Apocalypse have previously been reported to have trailers premiering with the new Star Wars film.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 is scheduled to open on June 3rd, 2016.

Thoughts on what Amell said? Are you looking forward to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2?


By Ruari Williamson

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