Well it's been a minute, hasn't it? I left a lot of stuff unfinished when I took my hiatus back in January, and finishing up Centaurworld was pretty much the top of that list (mostly because I had a WIP of this post sitting in drafts for months). Well the time has come to wrap this up! Let's talk about the finale to Centaurworld, and probably the best episode overall.
Normally when I review a TV show, I watch a batch of episodes and write about them before continuing to the next batch. Sure, I may have seen the show before, but gives a feeling that I don't necessarily know exactly what's going to happen next. Well, that's not the case for Centaurworld's second season. It's a shorter one with only 8 episodes, but the last one is longer and wraps everything up. And I watched it before I could write my thoughts on the previous 7 episodes. So let me try to sum up my thoughts on the mysteries laid out with as few spoilers as possible, now that I know absolutely all the answers.
Happy New Year! There's probably one person out there right now going, "Hey! This isn't the start of the 'Festival Orchestrating' arc for Higurashi no Naku Koro ni: Kai, AKA When They Cry: Kai!" Well that potential reader is right--I haven't finished up Kai, partly because my computer can't play Blu-ray discs so I'd have to watch it in the cold living room, but also because I'm lazy. But that doesn't mean that I haven't been watching things! I've got movies lined up, but not as many shows since so many are things I'd want to cover here. But during the holidays I checked out Centaurworld, a Netflix animated series that looked goofy as hell. And it is! But it also has a dark undercurrent that leads to a fight with an eldritch abomination. So made for me, really. Oh, and it's also a musical. There's a lot going on.
Holy shit, there are like a thousand adaptations of Mr. Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. Who knows, maybe next year for December I'll spend the entire month only covering different versions of the classic tale... But until that possible future, I feel like I should touch upon at least one adaptation each December. Last year was the beloved The Muppet Christmas Carol, but this year I somehow found myself watching the 1997 A Christmas Carol direct-to-VHS, Saturday morning cartoon-esque, animated version that was... not good. I'd say an attempt was made, but I'm not convinced of that.
I watch a lot of bad movies, but it's not often that I feel like something is actively trying to harm me with how bad it is. Cool Cat Fights Coronavirus may only be a 20 minute short on YouTube, but watching it was one of the most torturous things I have done in recent memory. I'm not even going to provide a link because I don't want to subject anyone else to its awfulness. But talking about it? Sure, why not!
Did everybody have a good Easter? Or if you don't celebrate, a decent regular Sunday? I spent the day with family members I haven't seen in a year because of, you know, everything, and then came home to watch a movie adaptation of a musical about a hippie clown Jesus. I was born after the 70's, so Godspell never really showed up on my radar. Yeah, the signature song song "Day by Day" did ring some bells, but I'm pretty sure I had previously heard the Shirley Bassey version. So why watch this? Beyond the spectacle, I wanted to see it for purely gay reasons.
Oh, I'm sorry, did you think that just because Christmas was over I'd stop reviewing holiday movies? Well fuck that! There's still two updates left for December, and I'm queuing up things early! Today we take a detour from Christmas movies to "vaguely Christmas-related holidays," such as the very important Life Day! It's a day where you... dress in red robes and... grab your light up snow globe and... travel to some weird void... where you scream? Whatever, it's The Star Wars Holiday Special. It doesn't matter, not like it's canon or anything.
Merry Christmas! My gift to you is me rambling about aspect ratios. No, you can't exchange it for something else. So anyway, you've probably heard of "widescreen" versus "full screen." Full screen is an aspect ratio of 4:3 (if the width is 4 units, then the height is 3 units), creating close to a square. This was the format of most early television shows and a lot of movies got cut down to that for a home release, either losing things on the sides or forcing editors to make awkward shifts to keep the action on the smaller screen. Case in point, the DVD of The Muppet Christmas Carol I have gives you the option of watching either widescreen or full screen before starting the movie, and in the full screen example you can see Peter Cratchit nearly cut out of the shot entirely. So widescreen for theatrical movies is generally better, right? Well, let me tell you why I prefer to watch this particular movie in full screen, or at least for one particular scene...
I want to start by saying that we have a lot to thank Robert Zemeckis for. He wrote and directed Back to the Future, its sequels, and directed the... Back to the Future Saturday morning cartoon? That has to be a typo. Anyway the man is a legend! Buuuuut... holy crap, his animated movies are unpleasant to look at. It also doesn't help that the story at the heart of The Polar Express is also pretty blah.
Full disclosure, I recently kind of forgot that Netflix existed. It's one of my browser shortcuts, for fuck's sake! I've been so focused on the amazing garbage Tubi is constantly offering that new releases people would actually have heard of were slipping me by. Case in point, did you know that Mrs. Dolly Parton had Netflix-original Christmas musical that came out at the end of November? Because I didn't! But I do now, so here we go!