MUSIC – Balcony Scene – Craig Armstrong

From Romeo + Juliet 1996 



MUSIC – Current TV Theme Songs 

As a bit of TV nerd, I’ve written before about my love of soundtracks – in particular theme songs (see various Playlist pages if you don’t believe me!) – previously. Personally, I find the un-theme of Supernatural – Carry On Wayward Sons by Kansas – to be one of the most effective defacto TV theme songs EVER. I’ve even blogged on some seriously dodgy soundtracks just because they thematically tickled me – Stalker – take a bow!  Recently,  I’ve been blown away by the brilliance of the music utilised in Fargo (especially season 2), Justified and Sense8.

So naturally, I’ve purchased some of those ‘music from TV’ cd’s and found myself disappointed at how dated they all are. No Orphan Black, Game of Thrones or Utopia (not a huge fan of electronic/house/dance/whatever that was but it was a REALLY effective soundtrack!) – in fact the most recent additions are usually Dawson’s Creek and Ally McBeal; which – no offence to the respective artists involved – hark back to my school days and are therefore more antique than cassettes*

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MUSIC VIDEO – Lady Gaga – Till it happens to you

This music video clip portrays sexual assaults against women and the aftermath of the incident.

 “The following contains graphic content that may be emotionally unsettling but reflects the reality of what is happening daily on college campuses.”

A portion of proceeds from the sale of the song will be donated to organizations helping survivors of sexual assault.

A few days ago, Lady Gaga released the single Till it happens to you. Co-written by LG and Diane Warren; the song has been recorded for the soundtrack for The Hunting Ground – a documentary on sexual assault on US university campuses.

Warren said of the song and Gaga’s contributions:

I heard about [the film] and it just really touched me, and she had stuff in her life that she could relate to. Gaga is one of the most talented artists I have worked with in my life and I’m excited about doing more with her… There are a lot of levels to the song. There’s something very vulnerable about it and something very defiant about it, especially the way [Gaga] sings it. The first verse is vulnerable—’You tell me its going to get better?’—and the second verse comes in and it builds. Really? It gets better? No. You don’t know until it happens to you…

Warren also added that the song’s message was universal in nature and relatable to any loss faced in life (from wikipedia)


From the Academy Award-nominated filmmaking team behind THE INVISIBLE WAR, comes a startling exposé of sexual assault on U.S. campuses, institutional cover-ups and the brutal social toll on victims and their families.



You tell me hold your head up
Hold your head up and be strong
Cause when you fall you gotta get up
You gotta get up and move on

Tell me how the hell could you talk,
How could you talk
Losing till you walk where I walk,
This is no joke

Till It happens to you, you don’t know how it feels, how it feels
Until it happens to you, you won’t know, it won’t be real
No it won’t real
I know how it feels

Till your world burns and crashes
Till you’re at the end, the end of your rope
Till you’re standing in my shoes
I don’t wanna hear a thing or two from you, from you, from you

Till it happens to you
You don’t know how I feel, how I feel, how I feel
Until it happens to you, you won’t know, it won’t be real
No it won’t real
I know how it feels
Till it happens you
Happens to you
Happens to you
Happens to you
Happens to you
Till it happens you
You won’t know how I feel

MUSIC VIDEO – Killjoys theme song

The not-at-all photogenic Killjoys

The not-at-all photogenic Killjoys

Y’all know that I’m a sucker for a good theme song (memo to me – might be time for an updated TV Theme song playlist…). I’ve tolerated many a not-so-awesome show just because I enjoyed the music (and in fact I was predisposed AGAINST the most recent Star Trek tv series because of its dire theme song. A song. With LYRICS. For Star Trek. Ooooh I can feel the blood pressure rising already!).

Killjoys is a new Canadian* SF series – very Firefly meets Farscape – with a pleathora of SF references to keep the serial viewer happy (Red 17, ‘So say we all’). Also space ships, alien planets and shiny things…so it’s fair to say I’m likely to get hooked.

Killjoys spaceship space bounty hunters


Killjoys follows a trio of hard-living but fun-loving bounty hunters – Dutch, John, and D’avin– taking on interplanetary missions, chasing and capturing deadly criminals throughout a distant system named the Quad.

They have sworn amongst themselves to remain neutral during a bloody, multi-planetary class war that threatens to destroy the Quad.

Additionally, Dutch and D’avin both have dark secrets in their past – secret even from themseleves – and which threaten to tear their team apart.

The theme track is written by show creator and writer Michelle Loveretta (Lost Girl) and *is performed by the Mahones (or a few of their members anyway) – an Irish Canadian punk-rock-folk group. called A Real Westerlyn.

No sign of the complete song just yet.





First 4 minutes


*I know that I’m constantly harping on about it…and here I go again – I’m telling you – Canada is *the* place for new SF for TV. Sure, the production values aren’t always as high as on the US equivalents, but they have more heart and guts. Orphan Black, Continuum (not a perfect show but still), the good half of Haven (I kid) – some of my favourite shows of recent years have come out of the great north…the white north? That country there!

**I had originally posted this line about the Mahones but was corrected via comment. Thanks for the update Jeffrey!

PLUG and REVIEW (ish) – 2 Kill Comic

IMG_3089You might recall me bragging about my friend Tom Ellis HERE and HERE.

Well, the little sod has gone and done it again! Damn him and his inspirational/creative self!

Tom has created a comic book series.

And written the first issue.

And published it.

And is selling it.

Episode 01 is a tale of intrigue.
An assassin is sent out to kill someone.
We see the instructions being given.
Then the interactions between the pair. 
Who is the target? Who the assassin?

tom comic

Initially I had intended writing a full review for Issue One but to do so would quite spoil this twisty-turny tale.

What I will say is that this is a terse thriller. The language used is deliberately ambiguous and captures the attention and imagination of the reader. The dialogue reads right, the character sound like they’re actually talking to each other (one of my normal bug bears in comics) which is a huge thumbs up.

All artwork has been created by Katie Thompson – another friend and con-family member of mine. Though I’ve seen bits and pieces of her work before, nothing on this scale and nothing so deliberately minimalist and stylistic in tone. I love the use of light and dark and that the only colour used in red. The emotions of the characters are emphasized throughout – bravo Katie!

I’m hugely impressed by my two mates – this is a terrific project! However, this is not perfect – not just yet.

In places, I could have used more exposition via text rather than via the artwork. During the dinner date for example, I almost resented having panels devoted to each detail of the nights progression – I thought that the pace suffered slightly here as a result. (However, later, after the date – the use of the art to propel the story forwards, as opposed to the writing is spot on. I’m an inconstant woman, clearly).

I look forward to seeing the direction that Tom and his intrepid team of awesome take for the next!

Watch the trailer here


Visit the 2KILL page on facebook

Danny Snelson

Danny Snelson

2 Kill Playlist

You can download the soundtrack – compiled by Aaron Richards HERE because what is the point of a comic without a kickass soundtrack?

Or play the soundtrack on the embedded player below.

tl: dr

A brand new comic series from enthusiastic first timers;  that brings together a story, artwork and music.

Issue 1 out now!

unnamed (1)To find all posts relating to Conversations with Geek People, click HERE

To find us on twitter #CWGP

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MUSIC VIDEO – Malvina Reynolds – Little Boxes

This was used as the theme song for the TV series Weeds, which was how I first came by it. 

It’s a fantastic song and a wonderfully evocative protest one – the lyrics are at once catchy, cheerful and cautionary. Reynolds was inspired to write the song while driving through Daly City, California in 1962.

Nancy Reynolds Schimmel – Melvina Reynold’s explained:

“My mother and father were driving South from San Francisco through Daly City when my mom got the idea for the song. She asked my dad to take the wheel, and she wrote it on the way to the gathering in La Honda where she was going to sing for the Friends Committee on Legislation. When Time Magazine (I think, maybe Newsweek) wanted a photo of her pointing to the very place, she couldn’t find those houses because so many more had been built around them that the hillsides were totally covered.”

Reynolds has a distinct voice and here she uses it to maximum effect, rasping out the chorus, pinching the words ‘ticky tacky’ (popularised in the 60’s by this track) all the time maintaining the song-song lullaby like melody. 

The version of the song destined to become famous was sung by her good friend and fellow political activist Pete Seeger in 1963. 

Since then, the track has been covered by a multitude of artists, from a multitude of different musical genera – surely a testament to the song’s integrity and lasting impact. 


  • According to Christopher Hitchens, satirist Tom Lehrer described “Little Boxes” as “the most sanctimonious song ever written”.
  • Weeds used nearly 30 different versions of the song (including this one) during its 8 season run. 
  • In 1952, a similarly tuned song called Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was released by Bob Merrill.

REVIEW – Supernatural – the musical episode!

Supernatural has always included a lot of pop culture references. Indeed, this tendency was present from the first episode – when Dean picks Mulder and Sculley as their aliases. The show has also made clear that it wasn’t going to shy away from paying homage to its literary and on screen lineage with the brothers investigating everything from classic horror tropes – werewolves, vampires, ghouls – to characters and creatures from mythology – Loki, Kali, Osiris – and religious texts – Angels, Demons, Horsemen of the Apocalyse, Golems – to giant teddy bears, game show hosts, artifacts and everything in the middle.

supernatural - metaBeyond this though, Supernatural does meta better than almost anything else. (A meta reference, also called a meta-fiction technique or meta-fictive device, in a TV show occurs [when] the show, or a character, demonstrates they are aware of their own fictional nature.)

There are a number of hilarious meta episodes (they tend towards the funny with an OMMMMPH poignant emotional moment when you least expect it) across the series run. We’ve just now watched Fan Fiction, the episode that celebrates 200 episodes of the show.

* * * * * SPOILERS * * * * *

Supernatural has everything. Life, death, resurrection, redemption. But, above all, family. All set to music you can tap your toe to. It isn’t some meandering piece of genre dreck. It’s epic! And that… Well, that is my bag of tea.

The 100th episode occurred in season 5; episode 18 – The Point of No Return. This milestone was marked by … Dean staying in a hotel room numbered 100…and that was about it.

To be fair, there was this whole epic timeless war between good and evil going on at the time, as well as brother pitted against brother in a battle that transcended generations. God himself was believed to be playing a part…albeit in a disguised cameo. Having already introduced the Ghostfacers in the first season and used Chuck Shurley and the Supernatural tie-in books to decimate the fourth wall…Kripke may well have felt that he’d done enough! Perhaps more importantly, The Kripke Era had a set story to tell and a fixed time frame to tell it in. The episode was better spent focusing on the arc.

The 200th episode on the other hand was as weird and wonderful as a dedicated fan of the series could have hoped for (though not QUITE as wacky as the Stargate SG1 one). And without anything as obvious as a coherent thread or over riding arc tying the whole season together (sigh); it felt like a welcome respite from a plodding and reduced world rather than interrupting a narrative flow.

Sam: Where’s Chuck?

Marie: Oh, I-I-I love him. I do. But, honestly, the whole author inserting himself into the narrative thing? It’s just not my favorite. I kind of hate the meta stories.

Sam and Dean: (Simultaneously) Me, too.


The Road So Far…

When Sam (Jared Padalecki) andDean (Jensen Ackles) investigate the disappearance of a teacher, they are stunned to see the school is putting on a musical based on their lives. Familiar faces abound in this milestone episode.

When I first heard that this was a musical episode, I was a little wary. I mean, if it turned out like Scrubs or Once More With Feeling then- yippee! If it was more in the Fringe or House line (really didn’t think those musical eps worked AT ALL); then perhaps it would be better not to bother.

It felt as though the Supernatural writers deliberately sought to avoid the obvious when penning this. There are no rock ballads from Dean (or even karaoke or miming); no covers of a well known rock and roll or metal classic from back in the day; no cheesy arm clenching. Instead, we find a tale crafted to not only highlight the best aspects of the series so far but also to pay tribute to the ongoing support from the fanbase. Certainly, the loving attention to detail portrayed by Marie, Maggie, Maeve and the other school girls is a far friendlier reflection of the avid viewer than the OTT Becky.

During the episode, we have a bunch of angelic faced school girls telling the brothers story (as depicted by Chuck Shurley and further re-interpreted by Marie). Every song casually and brutally ripping the band aid off (‘that’s Adam, John Winchester’s other son…’; Castiel ‘I’ll just wait here’). The cast here were just terrific and their voices so sweet, so perfect…so counter to expectations – check out the songs below if you don’t believe me!supernatural min dean and sam girl

Even the monster of the week is on point. A deity that brings stories to life; one that recognizes the hold that fiction has over us – no coincidence on a show celebrating 200 hours of story telling.  Heck, at the end of the hour, no one has even died (bar the monster of the week) – a very rare occurrence on this show where – certainly in recent years – secondary characters have been dropping like flies.

And then out of nowhere – HOPE appears. The last time we saw Chuck – the show was at its best. Aside from Rob Benedict playing the character as a delight, it was a lovely reminder that (once upon a season) there is a bigger picture and questions yet unanswered. Here’s hoping he can work a miracle for season 11!

200 NODS (from imdb and the like)

  • Sam stays at a Route 200 Motel; room numbered…200.
  • This is the first time that Carry On My Wayward Sons is used outside of a season finale since season 01 (where the song is played in the penultimate episode).
  • Dean and Marie both note that it is a classic.
  • It is also the first time that Sam and Dean are seen listening to the song.
  • Still on COMWS – neither of the primary actors were given any information about the songs used in the play. Their filmed reactions were genuine.
  • The schoolgirl actor playing Castiel is seen wearing her tie front facing. Dean turns it round to reflect Castiel’s actual preference.
  • Dean says ‘We got work to do’ as he tosses a gun into the impala. This line is a repeated one within the series and has also been used by Sam and Bobby. It’s utterance usually occurs after a significant character death.
  • First time the shipper phrase Destiel is used on the show (though Megstiel and Wincest was reference a few seasons earlier).

supernatural - destiel

  • Jensen Ackles is known not to be a fan of the ship Destiel. When it is mentioned during the episode he purposefully breaks the 4th wall by staring directly at the cameras in good natured exasperation.
    • Later the characters discuss how it’s okay that there are many different interpretations of the show; perhaps responding to grumblings in the fandom.
  • The BM scene reflected a point of confusion that actually happened (for the record BM = boy melodrama…not bowel movement)
  • Similarly the line about the ‘Samulet’ hitting Siobhan in the face reflects the real life irritation of Jensen Ackles – resulting in the necklace being written off the show.

Songs from the Supernatural Show


The Road so Far – Alyssa Lynch (Siobhan – Dean)

A Single Man Tear – Alyssa Lynch and Katie Sarife (Marie – Sam)

Carry On My Wayward Son – Alyssa Lynch, Katie Sarife, Nina Winkler (Kristen – as Adam), Vivien Elizabeth Armour (Katie – as Bobby), Kelli Ogmundson (Alice – as John) and Rachel Warkentin (Tammy – as Mary )

I’ll just wait here then – Nina Winkler (Kristen – Castiel) (not on spotify)


Dean’s summary of Supernatural from season 6 onwards

Dean: Alright Shakespeare you know what; I can actually tell you what really happened with Sam and Dean. A friend of mine hooked me up with the unpublished-unpublished books. So Sam came back from Hell, but without his soul, and Cas brought in a bunch of Leviathans from Purgatory. They lost Bobby, and then Cas and Dean got stuck in Purgatory, Sam hit a dog. Uh, they met a prophet named Kevin, they lost him too. Then Sam underwent a series of trials, in an attempt to close the Gates of Hell, which nearly cost him his life. And Dean, he became a demon, a Knight of Hell actually.

Marie: Wow.
Dean: Yup.

Marie: That is some of the worst fanfiction I have ever heard. I mean seriously where did your friend find this garbage? And not saying that ours is a masterpiece or anything, but jeez. I’ll have to send you some fic links later.

This ties in with the Supernatural Wikia continuity 

  • Sam having come back from Hell without his soul (Season 6).
  • Castiel releasing Leviathans into the world (Season 7).
  • The introduction of another Prophet, Kevin Tran, and later losing him (Season 7 and later 9).
  • The death of Bobby Singer (Season 7).
  • Sam hitting a dog (Season 8).
  • Dean and Castiel getting trapped in Purgatory (Season 7).
  • Sam and Dean trying to close the gates of Hell, nearly killing Sam in the process (Season 8).
  • Dean Winchester becoming a Knight of Hell (Season 9).

supernatural - chuck

MUSIC – Supernatural Soundtrack Playlist

During our marathon (10 SEASON) rewatch of Supernatural;I’ve been trying to keep track of some of the most significant soundtrack songs.

supernatural 01

The Unofficial Supernatural Theme Song/ Anthem


O Death – Jen Titus (couldn’t find on spotify)


Some of my Favourite Tracks


  1. AC/DC – Highway to Hell – S01 EP01
  2. Steppenwolf – Born to be Wild – S07 EP23
  3. CCR – Bad Moon Rising – S01 EP22
  4. Styx – Renegade – S02 EP12
  5. Blondie – One Way or Another – S06 EP17
  6. Robert Johnson – Hellhound on his trail – S02 EP09
  7. Blue Oyster Club – (Don’t Fear) The Reaper – S01 EP12
  8. Bon jovi – Wanted Dead or Alive – S03 EP16
  9. Leslie Gore – It’s My Party – S03 ep13
  10. The Animals – The House of the Rising Sun – S02 EP16
  11. Bob Dylan – Knocking on Heaven’s Door – S05 EP16
  12. Deep Purple – Smoke on the Water – S06 EP02
  13. Asia – Heat of the Moment – S03 EP11
  14. Queensryche – Silent Lucidity – S02 EP17
  15. Lynard Skynryd – Simple Man – S05 EP03
  16. The Allman Brother Band – Rambin’ Man – S01 EP01
  17. Free – All Right Now – S01 EP06
  18. Survivor – Eye of the Tiger – Outtakes – S04 EP06
  19. Whitesnake – Here I Go Again – Should be on the show!
  20. Kansas – Carry On My Wayward Son – S01 EP 21 S02 – S10 Season Finales


REVIEW – Halt and Catch Fire

Season two of the AMC series is drawing to a conclusion and – to my horror – most people I meet still haven’t heard of this incredible show.

halt and catch fire 02


Halt and Catch Fire is a character driven series, focusing on four very different personalities. Set in Dallas during 1983 (the Silicon Prairie of Texas according to wikipedia); this is the journey of the personal computer revolution from the viewpoint of insiders.

The Set Up


A former IBM executive, Joe Macmillan plans to reverse engineer the flagship product of his former employer and forces his current company – Cardiff Electric –  into the personal computer race.

MacMillan enlists the help of Gordon Clark, a great engineer whose unrealized dreams of creating a revolutionary product have created tension in his marriage to Donna and Cameron Howe, a volatile prodigy who quits college to join MacMillan’s rogue PC project.


Heading off the team is Joe MacMillan (portrayed by the delightfully versatile Lee Pace); a cold hearted manipulator. He has vision and determination, paired with a ruthless disregard for people and a moral compass that appears to be broken. It’s difficult to build up any sort of backstory when everything he says is purely to motivate his audience to behave as he wishes. Interestingly, he appears to be a bisexual character, though this is played out more as an emotive element of his story; rather than for gratuitously. I approve!

One of Joe’s first moves is to bring in Cameron Howe (Mackenzie Davis – demonstrating mastery of ALL the emotions) – a renegade 22 year old programmer with talent out the ears and a bad attitude to match. Her chaotic lifestyle and appearance (and gender) mean that she is a literal vision representation of the new era of IT use; the decade to come as it were. Naturally, she constantly butts heads with the more conservative Gordon, while Donna regards her as a sort of primitive prodigy. Nevertheless, across the season, Cameron discovers her passion and becomes a dedicated team player. Despite her prickly facade; Cameron is a decent and honourable person for the most part. She is slow to trust and regards betrayal to be unforgivable, which will have obvious consequences for the second season.

Gordon Clark (the improbably [and delightfully] named Scoot McNairy) is an engineer with ideas but no ability to practically organise them. He is a ‘has been’, desperate for a last hurrah after the humiliation of his failure with Symphonic – a computer he created with his wife. Marred to Donna; an equally talented engineer; his life has become humdrum, with work and home almost equally flat and uninspiring. When charismatic Joe appears at Cardiff Electric, Gordon leaps at the opportunity to start something new; despite the pressure this places on his marriage and the technical hurdles. Also, his relationship with new talent Cameron is volatile at best.

Accomplished musician and former engineer; Donna Clark (Kerry Bishé is amazing in this role) has been raised in privilege and with high expectations. These expectations were shattered after the Symphonic fiasco, resulting in fears that her stale marriage won’t survive any more upheaval. Additionally, Donna resents being resigned to the home-keeper role (especially with a full time, if under appreciated, job of her own); while simultaneously wanting to support Gordon in a project that might restore his spirit. Over the course of the first season, Donna is pulled into the Giant project and by the end, it is clear that Donna is one of the most transformed characters on the show. Her evolution and development were part of what made this series unmissable for me.


halt and catch fire

Season Two is as tonally intense as its predecessor but has broadened its focus and sharpened the relationships. Stylistically, there are no major changes; but the shift of locations from offices to a mad-cap house business makes it feel very fresh, which is impressive for a show set 30 odd years ago. Of course AMC shows have a tendency to be very visually distinct so perhaps I should have expected them to up the ante in the sophomore year.


Once again, the characters drive the plot – however, in contrast to season 1, Joe and Gordon are a step removed from the action and Donna and Cameron are in the driving seat. It’s particularly exciting to see these stories told, but I’d be lying if I said that the emphasis on the female leads hasn’t been hugely thrilling for me. That these two characters seem to subvert tropes and avoid obvious stereotyping is just the proverbial cherry on top. Sure, there are a few instances that make me wince but in the main; these are two of the most well developed characters (who happen to be women!) on network TV.

Kerry Bishe as Donna Clark and Mackenzie Davis as Cameron Howe - Halt and Catch Fire _ Season 2, Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC

The 80’s standard pose – back to back Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC

The primary story is of course the four interacting and working together or actively NOT doing so. Donna and Cameron have created Mutiny – an online games platform. As they are very different personalities; the relationship isn’t stress free but there is a deep trust between the two and both seem determined to make it work. So, we see solid communication between the two. It’s not emotionless and doesn’t always appear to be professional but somehow they made it work. Cameron has grown up hugely, but is still prone to the odd wig out. Her heart hasn’t quite healed from the previous year, but she is focused on work and on learning how to be a boss. Donna is loving her work, but finding her home life and family to be out of balance.

The superlative Bosworth (brought to life by Toby Huss) is also back, vulnerable despite his vast experiences. His interactions with his two new bosses – Donna and Cameron – are at once unexpected, sweet and oh so human. It would have been very easy to have portrayed him patronizing or directing either women or attempting to assume control of Mutiny, but instead he has become part of the, family.  Where he sees gaps or errors, he takes them to the duo and advises, but follows their lead utterly. Sorry, I’ll stop gushing…bit of a personal favourite here.

halt and catch fire 04

Cam and Bos – Best BFF’s ever!

Joe is out in the cold. He hasn’t seen the rest of the team for a year and has been seeking to mend his wicked manipulative ways by settling down with Sara Wheeler (daughter of an oil magnate). Of course, being Joe – he just can’t quite getting his oar stuck in; though his past actions continue to dog him. Pace manages a beautiful balancing act or appearing to be contrite for his past failures…while also perhaps not really understanding the emotional boundaries crossed. His continued inability to respect boundaries or accept that his vision isn’t the only or even the best option to others makes his journey fascinating to watch…though I really wouldn’t like to have anything to do with the likes of him in real life.

Gordon has made a packet from the sale of Cardiff Electric and is the proverbial house husband, taking care of two daughters. Occasionally, he interferes with Donna’s work life – usually with disastrous consequences. We see a lot more of Gordon familial relationships which bring further depth and heart to the show. He wants to return to his engineering roots…but despite having the capital, he remains as gormless as before. Don’t get me wrong; he’s a good guy, but can’t do anything right.

As I was two when the series was set, I enjoy the technical stuff (look – the internet, online communities, gaming, first person games, etc were all invented by the same three people :P) but don’t really have any context for it. It has been a pleasure watching this with Himself, who knows the history of the timeline and coveted all the innovations being mentioned.


Check out the official music playlists for the series HERE

MUSIC VIDEO – Sense8 Theme

Here is the youtube video of the opening music


No sign of it on spotify or itunes (though there are a few cover versions).