Friday, September 9, 2016

Paradox Review

This week's show review is the 2009 British series Paradox, now available on Hulu. When I first tried this series not long ago, I didn't realize how short lived the show was. It had decent reviews, 7.2 stars on IMDB, described as:

"During a period of high activity on the sun a physicist receives images in his lab that show an event that has yet to happen."

I watched the first episode and was only mildly entertained. It had action, good acting, paranormal events taking place, even cruel corporate oversight administrators who were willing to sacrifice people's lives to test their theories on whether you could change fate. However, rather than intrigue me, those administrators simply pissed me off.  There were also a few other things about this series that failed to gain my interest: the character backgrounds and development were nearly nonexistent, as a result I didn't really care whether they survived or not, and the reason behind the psychic images transferred through the satellite was always a black box without any real theories beyond solar activity as to its cause. Some of these things might have been further developed after episode 3, but I was not interested in finding out by that point.

Evidently I wasn't the only one. When it was released, many of the critics were not impressed either and the season ended after episode 5. For this one, I wouldn't even watch the first episode. Just move on to something better.

Paradox: 2 Stars

Weston Kincade ~ Author of the A Life of Death collection, The Priors, and Strange Circumstances

Friday, September 2, 2016

Oddities Review

This week's review is on another pawn store show that found its niche, Oddities, in fact the only one I'm aware of that has sustained itself season after season. I mentioned it last week in my review of Pawn Stars. IMDB describes it as:

"New York City's Obscura Antiques & Oddities ain't your grandmother's antique shop unless your grandmother is an eccentric. Oddities follows this unique store as it deals in the strange and the bizarre, item-wise and client-wise."

In my opinion, one major reason this series successfully won out where shows like Hardcore Pawn Chicago failed was the show's unique subject matter. I am normally not one attracted to oddity shows like this, but my wife stumbled onto it and introduced me to Oddities when they were first airing season 1. After watching the first couple episodes, I couldn't look away, much like drivers rubbernecking past a traffic wreck.

So what do I mean? Well, Obscura Antiques & Oddities in New York City deals in the bizarre. I'm talking stuffed two-headed calves, Houdini's handcuffs, miniatures made out of belly lint, and so much more. If you wonder what people will bring in on Pawn Stars, it is extreme in Oddities. Additionally, celebrities with a twisted sense of entertainment like Cassandra Peterson (Elvira) often come in with requests for the Oddities staff to find.

If you are a fan of the bizarre and unorthodox, Oddities is one show for you. Currently in season 6, there are plenty of episodes to enjoy on Amazon or the Science Channel.

Oddities: 4 Stars

Weston Kincade ~ Author of the A Life of Death collection, The Priors, and Strange Circumstances