Haiku: Rectify, Season 4, Episodes 1 and 2


If you’ve never heard of Rectify, it’s not too late to start.  It won’t take long to catch up, either — the first three seasons is 22 episodes altogether.  My favorite character is Amantha, played by Abigail Spencer, who now stars in the NBC show Timeless.  Somewhere in the second season, the showrunner realized her comic chops and she’s been killing it ever since, delivering her dry sarcasm like it’s no one’s business.

It’s a slow show, but the best kind of slow.  Even in the era of Peak TV, there just aren’t many series like this that takes time with its characters.  This fourth season will be its last and I’m already grieving the finale.

Rectify, Season 4, Episode 1: “A House Divided”

Daniel, in the dark.
He thinks therefore he is not.
Tonk to the rescue.

Rectify, Season 4, Episode 2: “Yolk”

Teddy’s nervous date.
Amantha on the sat dish.
Janet bakes a cake.

Haiku and Review: Doctor Strange

Doctor Strange

Doc Strange, the love child
between M.C. Escher and
a kaleidoscope.

The last time I told anyone to go see a movie in 3D for its visuals was Avatar, and that was seven years ago.  Doctor Strange is another such film — the special effects are quite bedeviling and should be seen on the big screen.  Props must be given to Inception; that fight scene in the spinning corridor no doubt spawned a great deal of the action that we see here, not to mention the rest of the dreamy machinations led by Leo and company.

It’s a prototypical superhero movie, meaning there’s a reluctant hero, some funny lines, and a Big Boss level.  In a way, it’s as familiar as any bildungsroman, and at this point I’m so tired of it that if any film of this genre deviates even a little — like Deadpool — I’m almost grateful to the point of tears.  Benedict Cumberbatch turns his arrogance volume down to about 4 here, and it’s the right level for this damaged character.

Tilda Swinton is of course lovely and amazing as always, but I must say, as a person of Asian descent, it feels like if there was one big-budget superhero movie that could’ve starred many more Asians, it was this one.  I’ve read about the Tibet/China issue that most likely resulted in changing the teacher character from Himalayan to Celtic, so it was a business decision, but it also feels like a lost opportunity.  I’m glad Benedict Wong got in there — he was the best thing in Marco Polo (in a series that was, well, terrible), and he lends his considerable gifts of austerity and gravitas to the film.

Slice Magazine – Issue #19, Distraction

Happy to report that the good folks at Slice Magazine will be publishing my ekphrastic endeavor later this month.  The issue is titled Distraction, and it’s got some heavy literary hitters as you can see from the cover.

My part will be small, which makes sense as the paintings I wrote about are small, too.


This is a print magazine, so if you wish to revel in the glory of paper, you can order your copy.  Once I have it in my hands, I’ll put up some pics.

Visiting Authors Series Hosts Two Speakers Feb. 11

An announcement from Inside Warren, whose purpose is to be your best source for local goodness.  So it has been decreed — this is local goodness!


Thursday, February 11, 2016 7:30pm
Visiting Authors Series
Warren County Community College
Washington, NJ
with Michael Broek