I recommend the Strain for people who like being grossed out and depressed.

I settled down to watch The Strain‘s Season 3 premiere last night, hoping to see Angel, my favorite vampire-fighting former luchador.

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^ (not him specifically, just a general luchador)

When Angel didn’t appear, I couldn’t remember if he was dead. This is double-embarrassing because I’ve also read the books. 

I can never remember who’s dead on a TV show between seasons.

If a show has more than, say, 10 characters, I can’t keep track of them. I require very concise recaps before the credits every time, if possible.

Back to the Season 3 opener of The Strain, a show I mostly like because the vampires are not sparkly or sexy. During transformation, their noses and genitalia literally fall off. Their hair falls out. They develop giant attacking throat-tongues. In the books, a huge deal is made of the fact that they pee and poop from the same hole, and it smells like ammonia.

Oh, and the Nazis‘ Holocaust was their trial run for human-farming methods.

This show is so gross. Every time it comes on, I’m surprised anew at that FX will put this content on TV.

Every scene is sprinkled with viscera. Every character is flawed to the point of being hateful. The vampires are heinous. The child-acting is a disaster.

Which brings us back to Angel (who was not in this episode). He is an old Latino guy with a limp who can use his old, buff body to rip those genderless uni-pooping bodies to shreds. I don’t think he’s dead. I hope he isn’t. He my shimmering favorite in a world of sadness.

If you want to immerse yourself in The Strain‘s horrific, virulent misery, it’s on Hulu.

I hate-watched Fuller House so you didn’t have to.

I tested the strength of my marriage today.

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Our trial under fire was the pilot of Fuller House.

I could not pass up an opportunity to watch this throwback trainwreck.

My husband collapsed into a puddle of sighs and despair at the suggestion.

We watched anyway.

Here are my top 5 Fuller House thoughts:

1. The women aged nicely. The men — not so much. Except Uncle Jesse, of course. HAVE MERCY. Is this because women have more societal pressure to wear makeup and maintain a certain size? Or is it that women on TV tend to be more attractive in the first place (even during the original run)?

2. This is the most white show I have ever seen. There’s one Latino character. He speaks with an exaggerated Spanish lisp and cheats on his wife. I get that the Tanners happen to be white — but the inclusion of the terrible, racist Latino character is worse than none at all.

3. The inclusion of a laugh track highlights where the jokes fail. And they fail at least 90% of the time. We’ve entered a more sophisticated age of comedy that relies less on sight gags, repetition, tropes, 20-year-old callbacks, and two-dimensional characters. I do not want to return to the pre-30 Rock era.

4. They haven’t updated the kitchen since the 90s. And you know how I feel about beige kitchens.

5. I can’t look away from Jodie Sweetin’s surgical choices. I know where her eyes are. I am not looking there.

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You aren’t looking there, either.

I daresay they perked up the experience — but they weren’t enough to save the show from itself. I doubt many people will bother past the pilot, and that’s for the best.

Once More, With Feeling: SE01E01, We Gotta Get Out Of This Place

I’ve decided to watch my favorite TV show, Space Cases, again. Carefully. Thoughtfully. As an adult.

To be fair, I watch it whenever I’m down. I’m not totally unearthing them. But this time I’m giving it scrutiny.

Some of the things I’m going to say are harsh, but I say them with love. This has always been — and probably always will be — my favorite TV show. The nostalgia I have for it totally compensates for the show’s 1996 Nickelodeon flaws. I feel like I have to put a disclaimer here to this effect before someone calls me out the degree of lengthy analysis and criticism that these posts will contain.

Season 1, Episode 1: “We’ve Gotta Get Out Of This Place” summary: Five doofy, difficult future-teenagers decide to go onto an unidentifiable alien ship that’s parked at their ambiguous “school.” The inattentive adults ostensibly watching them chase after them. To exacerbate to the dangerous situation they’ve gotten themselves into, the teens fiddle with the controls of the ship. They wind up blasting said ship through a wormhole into a remote part of space. Oops.

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And now for thoughts, behind a cut, because heaven help us all.

Oh You Fancy, Huh?: Flannel Shirt Edition

Attention, Internet! Behold my Halloween fail!

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A few years ago at Goodwill, I stumbled upon a fancy gown that some cruel bride had inflicted upon her maids. I purchased it for $5, smug I’d find a purpose for it.

This year I decided to embellish the dress to become the Queen of Hearts.

Alas, the center top wig is not Amazon Prime eligible, leaving me only with the horrible dead-muppet-on-your-head option for cheap expediting. (This, kids, is what happens when you leave things for the last minute). I think I may buy the wig on the right for a future year.

Instead, I’m going to be Little Pete from The Adventures of Pete & Pete.

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My husband was already compiling the elements to become Artie, the Strongest Man in the World, this adult in a Where’s Waldo sort of costume who hangs out with the kids. (The 1990s was a simpler time, before the Sandusky trial.) He’s Little Pete’s best friend, so turning myself into Little Pete is:

a) easy

and

b) sort of a couples costume.

In that we’re a set, not that Little Pete and Artie are having relations.

I just have to put on a red plaid hat and some baggy clothes from the 90s and I’ll be set. (I also bought some orange hairspray and brown eyeliner with which to give myself freckles. Because gingers.)

My quest for a flannel shirt (not really pictured here, but Little Pete wears them a lot) revealed a shit-ton of expensive flannel. Isn’t the whole point of flannel that construction workers, rough-n-tumble lesbians, and people from Seattle can cheaply wear it?

And now, without further ado: Flannel None of Us Can Afford.

Which of these shirts is under $300? No peeking until you’ve made your guess.

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1. Vivienne Westwood Checked Flannel Shirt, Brown, $320; 2. Junya Wantanabe Check Wool Shirt Jacket, $975; 3. Sacai Long-Sleeved Shirt, $618; 4. DSquared2 Long-Sleeved Shirt, $650; 5. Burberry Adken Check Flannel Shirt, $252; 6. Odyn Vovk flannel shirt, $1450; 7. White Mountaneering Shirt, $566

That’s right, kids: Burberry is a steal. Keep that in mind when shopping for the rest of your life.

But drawing Petunia (Little Pete’s tattoo) on my arm will be free.

PETUNIA

Happy Monday, everyone!

With all the things that you can do, the circus is the place for you.

Behold: sword-swallowing, fire-breathing, genetically-varied mayhem! The wonders never cease within… the sketchbook. Of doom.

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My husband and I are obsessed with Freakshow on AMC.

We fell into a pit of despair when we found out the first season only contained eight episodes.

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Only eight episodes? What is this bullshit?