dill & fennel

March 21

It’s time for spring! Longer days, cool breezes, and lots of sun. I got a little too into watching cycling races this month to the detriment of reading and movies, but also who cares—cycling races are dope.

There’s a lot of great stuff coming out in the next few months, but this is my favorite show lately:

There’s a certain vibe about it that reminds me of both Madoka and Serial Experiments Lain. We’ll see if it sticks the landing.

In live-action shows, I’m enjoying the second season of Back, the just-started F1 race season for 2021, and a slow rewatch of the show Fringe. For a bit of March I was watching more Survivor, and I’m now down to 19 episodes left out of the forty that aired. I think the final 19 are somewhat lackluster, but fortunately, there are two new seasons in the hopper. I hope the filming goes off safely—39 days alone on the beach seems like a bubble to me.

I’m not quite ready for this whole “quarantine” and “staying home” thing to end, to be honest. I’ve got a load of books in my queue to read soon, and currently I don’t need a good excuse to not go out. It’s going to be a weird summer if we’re expected to “be around people” again, I think.

Books > people.

Books

The Spy Who Came in From the Cold — John Le Carré

I’ve seen a number of tv and film adaptations of Le Carré’s work, but this is the first novel I’ve read of his. I get why he’s so well-regarded. This was a wild story of spies and double-crosses, with everyone on the spectrum between terrible and ghoulish. A delightful spy novel.

The Space Between Worlds — Micaiah Johnson

A rad take on the many worlds theory, complete with a bit of Mad Max desert action, and queer characters. I really enjoyed this book, but a word of warning, it includes a bit of assault.

Fake Accounts — Lauren Oyler

A very strange book that flirts with autobiography, and continually subverts both modern female fiction and expectations. I really enjoyed how funny and dark this was, even if it made me deeply wish I could return to Berlin soon.

Movies

Safe House

Old spy/young spy. Not quite a Bourne or a Le Carré, but it was a fun thriller even though I can’t quite take Ryan Reynolds seriously.

Dante’s Peak

This is a more focused predecessor to one of my all-time favorite movies, 2012. James Bond does a science, while Sarah Conner slings espresso and does mayor stuff. This move made me afraid of volcanos and hot springs and also children driving. If there’s a genre called “my boss didn’t beleive me until it was too late” this is firmly part of it.

The Last Black Man in San Francisco

The colors and light in this film are unbeleivable. Utterly gorgeous. Jimmie Fails and Jonathan Major had incredible screen chemistry, with their performances tied together with long pans. I can’t wait to see more Jimmie Falls in films.

Oblivion

Somehow I hadn’t seen this until tonight. A delightful Tom Cruise sci-fi with a pretty predicitable twist, and really goofy goggles. A+

Sentinelle

A nice and tight action film. The fights were well-coreographed, and there just wasn’t much fat to trim. Fast, fun, and chill.

Shadow in the Cloud

A hat on a gremlin on a hat. This movie was initially kind of interesting, and seemed like it would be a straight-up tale of misogyny in the sky, but then the gremlin showed-up, and the zeros, and it just kept going.

The Fugitive

I hadn’t seen this since the 90s, and it really holds up. Ford and Jones amp up the tension and make every scene worth watching. Classic.

Space Sweepers

I’d heard this described as a life action Cowboy Bebop, but sadly it has much less style and substance. Parts of the world building were cool, but why did they have to add a farting child?