the Best of The Box
I love me some good TV. We are always on the hunt for a new box set in our household. Over the last few weeks I have been watching some great TV; some absolutely mind-blowing TV, some new & some returning favourites.
Wild Wild Country - Netflix
I'm going to start off with the show that has blown my mind the most recently. That show is Wild Wild Country, a Netflix docuseries based on the controversial Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh & the rise of his Rajneesh movement across the globe - primarily how it affected the small town of Antelope, Oregon, USA.
I'm reluctant to say too much about this show, because I think it would be best to let it unravel before you eyes - and I really don't want to spoilt it for you. Although I've linked the trailer below, I'd suggest going into it without watching the trailer, as it gives a bit much away for me. Just watch this show, and prepare for your jaw to drop in disbelief.
The Assassination of Gianni Versace - BBC
Next we have The Assassination of Gianni Versace - the second season of the American Crime Story anthology series, the first season being The People v. O. J. Simpson. Created by Ryan Murphy, the man behind the extremely popular American Horror Story, American Crime Story will re-create a huge American scandal each season.
As stated by the title, this season follows the assassination of fashion guru Gianni Versace in 1997. Now this is a story I had absolutely no prior knowledge of, so I have been absolutely gripped by it from the off. The cast features Édgar Ramírez as Gianni Versace, Penélope Cruz as his sister Donatella, Ricky Martin as Gianni's lover & Darren Criss as Andrew Cunanan (the man behind the assassination). Check out the trailer below.
Marvel's Jessica Jones (S2) - Netflix
Following up from the slight disappointing "The Defenders", Netflix are continuing their Marvel run with Jessica Jones back for season 2. For those unaware Jessica Jones follows Krysten Ritter as the titular super powered private detective as she takes on new cases whilst trying to solve the mystery of her past.
Season 1 was without doubt one of the high points of Netflix's run with the Marvel characters. Whilst only around 6 episodes in, I'm still trying to figure out how this season will go. Ritter puts in another captivating performance as Jessica Jones & does plenty to hold your attention. The Netflix shows seem to have suffered from a dip in quality as they have went on with the exception being the recent "The Punisher", so I can only hope that Jessica Jones doesn't suffer from this as the season progresses. Check out the trailer below.
Love (S3) - Netflix
Love, the Judd Apatow produced romantic comedy series is back for its third and final season on Netflix. If you haven't already seen it, Love follows Gus (Paul Rust) & Mickey (Gillian Jacobs) over the course of the turbulent relationship that features many ups and downs throughout. There is also a great supporting cast full of hilarious characters to back up the strong leads.
For me, the third season has so far been every bit as good as the previous too. When it first came along, Love was a show that completely took me buy surprise & quickly got me hooked. It is such a refreshing take on the genre & a show that I think deserves your attention. Check out the trailer below.
One final thing. A glaring omission from this list is The Walking Dead. The Walking Dead is a show I have been watching for 8 seasons now, and it is a show that I have seriously lost interest in - but can't stop watching. However, I think i'm going to save my full thoughts on that for another blog. There's a lot to cover there.
I hope you find something from this list to get stuck into. Also, let me know if you have any recent recommendations.
Happy watching 📺
If you are roughly the same age as me & played video games, then the chances are you will have owned a PS2. If you did, then you may or may not have played the Team ICO classic Shadow of The Colossus. I came across the game quite late in the PS2's life-cycle, I think I picked it up maybe a couple of weeks before I upgraded to a PS3 on launch day - hence I never got round to finishing it. I felt really bad about not finishing the game because it was such a celebrated title, and what I did play of it was fantastic.
Luckily though, Bluepoint Games have fully remastered this classic for PS4 in glorious HD & following the overwhelmingly positive reviews, I decided to pick this up & finally play through it in full. Check out the launch trailer below:
Shadow of The Colossus tells the story of a character called Wander who enters a forbidden land in search of a cure to bring his girlfriend, Mono, back to life. In order to restore her life, he makes a deal to defeat 16 beings known as Colossi that are spread throughout the land. And with that, you are set on your way - with nothing but your horse (Agro), a sword (which acts are your compass) & a bow.
The gameplay starts from a central point - the temple where you begin your quest, and from here you must make your way across the sprawling, barren, but beautiful landscape in search of the Colossi. This is where the game really differs from other titles; there is no levels, towns or dungeon that you need to explore & there is no enemies other than the Colossi. Using your sword to guide the way (you hold it in the air and it shines a light in the direction of the Colossi), you make your way across the landscape, often traversing bridges & obstacles that will lead to a remote location where you discover the giant Colossi.
The Colossi battles each serve as a cross between a traditional boss battle & a puzzle, usually requiring the player to figure out the giants weak-spots, and how to get to them. This would typically involve finding a way to scale the beast to reach these glowing weak spots & whilst they start relatively simple, as the game progresses they do become quite challenging! The battles are incredible, and offer some of the most rewarding moments I've ever experienced in gaming & the soundtrack that kicks in when you finally get on a Colossi is such a memorable track.
With being a re-master there is a few drawbacks; the controls can be slightly shonky (although not as bad as the original) and they do take some getting used to - the amount of times I forgot to hold R2 whilst climbing & fell to my death was unbelievable. The camera can be a nightmare at times, but it's something that you just get used to eventually.
Visually, the game is spectacular & offers some absolutely breathtaking scenery. Whilst not as vast & certainly not as populated, it reminded me somewhat of last years Game of The Year - The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild. It offers for some fantastic moments to use the in game photo mode - a feature that now seems to be standard for most Sony 1st party releases. Check out some of my screenshots below:
Overall, I'm delighted that I decided to finally play through this game. It is a true classic, and one that I feel all gamers owe it to themselves to play. It was such a thrilling experience from start to finish - and such a nostalgia rush to when I first played it back in 2006. I wonder if similar will be done to Team ICO's first outing, ICO as I never played that game at all & also it has given me appetite to play their game that spent years in development hell - The Last Guardian. You can pick this game up for less than £20 now & for the satisfaction I took from it, I certainly feel it is money well spent.
You won't play many games like Shadow of The Colossus & it gets 4.5 out of 5 from me.