Category Archives: Television

What if You Could Go Back (and change your past)?

With my graduation just around the corner in three weeks, it’s hard for me not to feel like I face impeding doom, a deep dark hollow , extreme uncertainty in front of me, as I leave University, and have to ask myself: what’s next? Of course, I have a few things lined up, but that will depend on whether or not I’m good enough they will work out, if things will arrange themselves, you know life. Fact is, though, as of this minute, if I were graduating today, I’d have no job, no future, no nothing. It kind of makes you freak out.

And question every decision you’ve ever made that led you to this place, which, apparently, it’s a normal place to be when you’re graduating University. (Except most people graduating are much younger than twenty-five-year old me because they didn’t waste two and a half years at Law School). As you can see, I’m in a bit of a life freaking out right now. Which leads to my post.

In my last vacation, just as these feelings of total despair confusion started to settle, my friends suggested that I watched this tv show, which turned out to be one of the best things I’ve done all year. Possibly in my life, because it completely changed me. The show is called Being Erica, and it’s not only the best show I’ve ever watched (sorry, Charmed, I still love you!), but it’s exactly what I’ve needed this year, as I go through all these stupid confusing messed up growing up changes.

Let me catch you up: the show is about this woman, Erica Strange, who’s thirty-two years old, and about as underachiever as one can be (Hello, instant identification!). She’s smart, she’s funny, she’s beautiful, but she holds a low class job, she doesn’t hold on to a guy, and she’s super insecure. And she blames it in her past choices. Fine. We’ve all done that (right?). In an especially bad day, in which she a) is fired from her job, b) is dumped by a guy she’s dating, c) suffers an allergic reaction and almost dies d) all the previous answers, Erica is approached, a the hospital, by Dr. Tom, a therapist that claims he has the only therapy she’ll ever need: results guaranteed.

(Follow this link NOW and watch this Being Erica trailer and go watch the whole show! It WILL change YOUR LIFE! and if you’re thinking: “But I don’t want my life to change.” That’s where you’re wrong!)

And that’s where she show really starts. Dr. Tom’s brand of therapy is hardly traditional: he does Time Traveling Therapy, which allows Erica to go back in time, revisit her past mistakes/bad choices, undo them, and change herself and her life. But that’s the best thing about the show, though: it falls far away from the cliché, because as Erica goes back in time, changes her past, her actions, her mistakes, her present hardly changes. Very, very little of her  current life is actually changed by changing the past. What truly changes is the inside of her. What her trips to the past truly offer her is perspective on what’s happening, on how she came to be the person she is and how she could change and improve that person. And that’s what makes the show completely amazing. Because if it was touch and go, change and done, there would be little to learn from it.

Also, you have to give huge props to Erin Karpluk, the actress who plays Erica, who’s about the most relatable girl in the world. She’s gorgeous, but not in an Angelina Jolie sort of way, more like, “Wow, if I really took care of myself, I could actually be as pretty as that girl.” She feels so real, and her face has about the most beautiful shape in the world. And, I have to say this, no actress ever cries as well as she does. It’s like she’s feeling everything Erica is. It’s amazing.

So, I watched this show, and as I saw Erica grow  and change, it really inspired me to go after what I want to. But, if you know me, I’m about as insecure and underachiever as they get, too (basically, I AM Erica Strange, without the being gorgeous part and having all the hot guys around me). Of course, when a show had this much impact on me, it’s hard not to wonder, how would I do Time Traveling Therapy? What would I change? What are my regrets?

Maybe that’s the greatest difference between Erica and I. She has tons of regrets, while I have very few. I mean, she has these huge regrets, and and mine are mostly very silly things that would hardly affect the way I view life and the world. Like, the first thing I can think I really regret, from the top of my head, is not going to the Spice Girls reunion concert (in Vegas or Los Angeles) when I was in Reno. I mean, such a missed opportunity, right? But it hardly changes my life. (Although, I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to forgive myself for that one. It’s the Spice Freakin’ Girls!)

Still, my regrets are few. Do I regret the two and half years I spent in Law School that stalled my life? I don’t kn0w. If I weren’t for them, I wouldn’t have started Linguistics and Lit when I did, and I wouldn’t have met all my friends and my professors. So, how could I?

Do I regret not being more involved in University from the beginning? Yes. And No. Because I promised myself I wouldn’t go through another University Hell like I did with Law School. And I didn’t find myself in anything at school until my last year when I discovered Sociolinguistics. Being more involved before that would have meant putting myself through something I didn’t want to. So, I don’t think I regret, not really.

I guess what I mean is, Time Traveling Therapy would be an amazing idea to gain perspective from the past, to see how things could have been different, to have gone to that concert!!!!, but, in the end, I don’t know how that would work for me. (Not that regular therapy is all that great either). In the end, what I really did learn with Being Erica was to go after I wanted, to break away from my insecurities, to be strong, be myself, be kind, don’t give into pressure, don’t be so hard on myself, that you can love someone and they may not be the right one for you, that you can be in love with someone, but not sexually attracted to  them, that  family is everything and so are friends, that time and space do matter when it comes to love, and that I want it all for myself some day.

My point is, I wouldn’t change much about my past, because it made me who I am. That’s how the show works anyway. She changes the past, and she still needs to change the present anyway. So, what I need to change, is me. From now on. Here and now. Today, tomorrow and the day after. Next year. Even though I feel I’m going to be swallowed whole by life. And I have no idea what’s coming. And I’m scared as hell.

So, my question for you is: if you could go back in time, do Time Travel Therapy, or maybe just once, would you change anything? What would you change? Do you think changing your past would change your present?

ALSO, GO WATCH BEING ERICA! 🙂

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Filed under Jobs, Life in General, School, Television

Well, they’re Canadian!

The title line for my post has been a frequent line in my home these days. For the last couple of weeks, while American television has most of their shows in hiatus, my family and I have ventured into Canadian television, as we watched what seemed (I wish!) endless episodes of a couple Canadian shows. We took on the newbie Continuum, a time-travel/police procedural, and the three seasons old Rookie Blue, a sort of dramaish police not quite-procedural, which is commonly known as “the Grey’s Anatomy” of Cops. The two shows don’t have all that much in common: the plots are completely different, one with anarchists/liberationists (depending on how you look at it) trying to save the world from a corporation dictatorship, the other the daily life of cops as they took on the job, the badge and sleep with half of their co-workers (hey, I’m not judging! It really was love at first time! Great show!). The pace is also completely different. Continnum is fast and full of action — my brother joked it seemed like a Jack Chan (or maybe it was Bruce Lee, or someone else like them!) movie — while Rookie Blue alternates between romance, conversations and a few fight scenes. What the two shows have in common, I mean, they it’s almost weird, is that everyone is REALLY, REALLY nice. EVERYONE.

You know when people are creepily nice? Like, you get to school or work in the morning in a really bad mood, because, well, it’s morning and you’re awake, and there’s someone smiling at you, offering you a drink or a hand? Yeah, that’s the Canadians for ya. They’re the morning people of the world or something. It’s not only that everyone is polite in every situation, nor that they’re respectful, mostly law-abiding, it’s that when they’re not, they’re still equally nice. And that really surprised me.

Maybe it shouldn’t. It probably says more about me than it says about them. Obviously, I’m not criticizing them. They’re more than right being the way they are. And I say that, because I know television reflects the society itself. What I see when I watch Canadian television is completely different from when I watch American television.

In the many episodes I’ve watched, not ONCE I’ve seen anyone intimidating a suspect into talking. Not once. And that was something my family and I really talked about, “If they were Americans, they’d be down their throat.” Instead, they would come up with, “Let’s see how they act when they’re not threatened.” And that’s something that we don’t see on American tv.” Americans are down with force and noise, while Canadians go down with arguments. That’s a HUGE difference.

In one of the episodes, this guy was a suspect of shooting at one of the officers. A COP. Had it been in any of the American shows I’ve watched for years, they’d be down their throat, about to kill him. He shot at her, and hit her on her vest. She was fine. Her fiancé was a bit nervous, and, while they calmed him down, another officer took the suspect to another room, and offered him a cup of coffee. COFFEE. TO A SUSPECT.

While my family and I looked at each other dumbfounded, we just said our new most said line while watching tv, “Well, they’re Canadian.” as if that explained everything. Maybe it does.

I haven’t met any Canadians in person lately. Last time I was very young to remember, if they’re really those nice of people. But as someone who’s been raised by a mother who’s a communications professor who specializes in globalization, I firmly do believe that the television programs of a country reflect their habits, their culture. And, man, did I start to admire Canadians, if I didn’t before.


So, do you guys know any Canadians? Do you think they’re really, super nice? Do you think a country’s television programs reflect their culture? And, lastly, have you seen Continuum or Rookie Blue and are you as obsessed as me? You should, they’re soo good! 😀

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Filed under Life in General, Television

My Obsession with ONCE UPON A TIME…

(And why it is this season’s must watch tv show!)

If you’re my Twitter follower or Facebook friend, at some point, you must have been flooded with my million comments on how much I love ABC’s new hit ONCE UPON A TIME. If you’re my close friend, you’ve certainly received an email or phone call or message demanding you watch it, stat. If you’re a friend of friend, I’ve likely meddled in your conversations and said, “Hey, you know, there’s this new tv show called…” If you’re my mother, I’ve made you sit with me, watch the show, and enjoy it, dammit.

Hi, my name is Barbie and I have an addiction. I’m an Onceaholic. You see, it doesn’t happen often. It’s only once every few years that comes a tv show that swoops around, and has me completely, totally obsessed with it, in a way that I’ll think about it most of my waking time. It’s the last thing I’ll think about when I’m in bed, before sleeping, I’ll think about how the plot will develop, and how the twists and turns will come around and “who from the real world is who in the Fairytale world”. All right, if you haven’t seen the show, you must be thinking, “What the what?”

Here’s a little summary. The Evil Queen, Snow White’s stepmother, has cast a spell that cursed every single character in the Fairytale world and trapped them in a time/space continuum, where time never passes, in a little town called Storybrooke, Maine (get it?). They were cursed to stay there forever, under her wrath, doomed to no more happy endings. Except, that just as she was about to throw the curse, Snow White and Prince Charming placed their newborn baby in a portal to the human world, and she was transported to our world, therefore, she wasn’t affected by the curse. The story tells, then, that this baby, at 28 years old, is the one capable to break that curse. And that’s where the show begins…

Emma is that baby, that was found by the side of the road. She had never had any idea of who her parents might be. On her 28th birthday, she’s confronted by a stranger — a ten year old kid, Henry, who says he’s the son she herself gave up for adoption. Don’t worry, this isn’t really spoilers, this is the first 10 minutes of the show. So, Henry tells Emma that he is from Storybrooke, Maine, a city that is frozen in time, and she needs to go there, because she’s the only person who’s able to help all these characters from the fairytales that actually happened. Of course, she doesn’t believe him, but fears for his safety, so, she drives him there. And THAT’S when she realizes that the town may be a little weird after all. 🙂

And here’s the trailer…

Have I got you dying to watch it yet? Well, now let me say WHY I love the show. It’s not only the plot, it’s how it’s written. There’s geniality behind everything. I just adore the name puns in the show. How the Fairytale characters end up in Storybrooke, how Snow White ends up becoming Ms. Blanchard, how Little Red Riding Hood is Ruby, how the Queen’s Mirror on the wall was the reporter for the Daily Mirror and everything in between. I think just the names would be enough to make me watch it.

But it’s not just it. It’s how real the characters are. It’s funny, I hear many people saying how much they like Fairytale world, but it’s the real world that gets me going. Of course, the characters have no recollection they are book characters, they think they are people like you and me, and they live normal lives. Snow White is teacher Mary Margaret. And, in the beginning, I thought she was a big too bland, compared to kick ass Snow White from Fairytale world, but as time started passing, as she started living with Emma, Mary Margaret gained such life, that she won me over. Maybe it was the fact that she had a one night stand. You know, the most normal thing in the world, for a woman in her 30s, who’s looking for her “prince charming” in real life, just like you and me. Of course, there’s also the fact that she’s played by Ginnifer Goodwin, which is one of cutest actresses on tv. The one thing I can’t wait for is the day Snow will find out Emma is her daughter. There was this one scene they shared I already watched 349059023 times. Seriously. You guys need to get to it.

I love the relationship between Emma and Henry, how she starts to care for him, to question if her decision of putting him up for adoption was indeed the best thing for him, how she becomes protective of him. I love how he so quickly trusts her, how she begins to warm up to this trust, how she always calls him “Kid.” Henry is such a sweet, creative, lonely, dreamer of a kid, that I just want to take him home and raise him myself. I have huge protective instincts over him. And I love that Emma, who’s been such a loner all her life, having been in the foster system herself, also carries this instincts. I felt bad when Jennifer Morrison left House, but it’s been the best thing ever because it got her free to play Emma.

Of course, Henry, has been adopted by the town’s Mayor, who’s Regina Mills, the real life alter of the Evil Queen, which is the constant cause of friction. And, let me tell you, that woman is pure evil. There’s not one good bone in that woman’s body. I hate her with all my guts. I was watching an episode with my mom yesterday, and she defended her, and I didn’t. Because she hurts even Henry. And, really, I don’t believe she cares even about Henry, who’s supposed to be her son. She is marvelously interpreted by Lana Parrilla,

To add up to the action, there’s the mysterious Mr. Gold, who’s the town alter of trickster Rumpelstiltskin. And, as you know, he should not be trusted. For him, everything comes with a price. And the biggest argument with my mom has been because I trust Mr. Gold more than I trust the Mayor. And she doesn’t. See? We get invested. You just can’t NOT TO!

But I guess the character I’ve been most curious about the story is Ruby, who hasn’t gotten her own episode yet. Oh, I haven’t mentioned, the show is from the writers of Lost, so, you get real world/Fairytale world alternating each episode, always a point when the real life character needs to deal with a situation similar to the one they had to deal in Fairytale world, I guess. Or showing where they come from and how they got there. So, I’m curious about Ruby. She wears short shorts and has long hair. You’d have to see her. Her grandma has a bed and breakfast called “Granny’s”, lol. I’d never heard of Meghan Ory before, but I really like her as Ruby.

And, there’s the hot guys. I’ve kept myself from going there, because it’s a bit of a sore spot and there’s spoilers, that’s why, but let me tell you, the show is full of hot, hot guys. And, I really, really can’t wait to see the guy who plays the Big Bad Wolf. I don’t know why, I just feel he’s gonna be the hottest of all. It’s like, “Dude, it’s all right, you can eat me up.” 😛

But the most important thing about this show, is that it makes me dream. It makes me believe in magic, in fairytales, in happy endings. And, just like Mary Margaret says in the pilot, “Believing even in the possibility of a happy ending is a very powerful thing.” And I need that. The fierce belief that there’s a happily ever after all. That’s why I read romance novels. That’s why I don’t watch movies where people die in the end. I desperately need to believe that in the end, everything will be already. That good will win over evil. That love will win over all. And, you know, I *know* that shit happens, and life gets in the way, and really, really bad things happen to good people. But believing in the possibility keeps me going. And, sometimes, I drift away from the possibility. And shows like that keep me believing. So, that’s why I love it so much. So fiercely. So obsessively.

So, what about you guys? Have you seen ONCE UPON A TIME yet? Have you loved it? Isn’t it addictive? If you haven’t, have I convinced it to try it? Do you believe in happily ever after, or, at least, the possibility of it?

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Filed under Television