NOC Recaps Into the Badlands: A Winter’s Brawl

Despite my better judgement, I went with a Hamilton pun this week rather than straight up lyrics from the show. Couldn’t help it. The fight scene between the Abbots and Sunny’s old and new sidekicks — juxtaposed against a Christmas-y backdrop, no less — was a highlight! Before settling on “A Winter’s Ball” wordplay, the other obvious number to reference was Jasmine Cephas-Jones’ showstopper “Say No to This,” thanks to twitter user @Bespectacled_Cy!

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NOC Recaps Into the Badlands: A Glimpse of the Other Side

Another week, another Into the Badlands recap that takes its cue from a Hamilton song. While it’s pretty obvious that I’m quoting Lin-Manuel’s soliloquy from the end of “The World Was Wide Enough” — fittingly about the lead-up and aftermath of a duel not unlike what Quinn and Ryder did last week — this week’s subtitle has as much to do with #GhostRyder as it does with the return of Sunny and Bajie who are just on the other side of the Badlands as well. And speaking of “other sides,” we see some characters aligning with other sides too. But really, it’s all about Quinn’s son on the other side.

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NOC Recaps Into the Badlands: You Don’t Have the Votes

Once again, we’re venturing back Into the Badlands as we finally get to see the much anticipated Baron Conclave. Last week, if you recall, we saw Minerva and Waldo arrive at Ryder’s estate to take part in the gathering. Basically, this is when all of the barons in the Badlands come together to sign agreements and hash out differences — without swords. Mostly. This particular conclave has been convened to vote on whether the Widow is allowed to even be a baron. Debates ensue, and all I can think of are the lyrics for both “Cabinet Battle” tracks from Hamilton.

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NOC Recaps Into the Badlands: Teach ‘Em How to Say Goodbye

In my quest to title each Into the Badlands recap after lyrics from a Hamilton song, the writers did me a solid by letting Nathaniel Moon, played by veteran actor Sherman Augustus, say a line from the classic George Washington showstopper:

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NOC Recaps Into the Badlands: Young, Scrappy, and Hungry

AMC’s Into the Badlands might have gotten a ten-episode second season (up four episodes from season one), but there’s no slowing down narratively. Episode 2 — which is actually chapter 8, proving just how propulsive the story of the Badlands is — wastes no time getting Sunny out of the mines, after a pretty awesome, and gruesome, fight scene to open the show. I would put the rest of the episode into three distinct buckets, that just so happen to coincide with a line from Hamiltons “My Shot.” And yes, I’m keeping up these #IntoTheHamLands recap titles all season!

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NOC Recaps Into the Badlands: Friends All Scattered to the Winds

After more than a year off the air, AMC’s dystopian martial arts epic Into the Badlands has finally returned! And with it, so have these NOC Recaps. Speaking of which, I’m going to try to title each recap with a line from Hamilton because 1.) seriously, have you met me?; and 2.) the Badlands writers have basically challenged me as much. So, appropriately enough, the Season Two premiere is named after a lyric from “Yorktown.”

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NOC Recaps The Flash: The Do Over

“I ran back in time because Zoom and my dad and things and I got to live with my parents and it was all good but then it wasn’t so I came back but everything is different and I want everything to change back.” – Barry Allen during this week’s panicked voiceover

Barry flips his shit so hard that he flips it all the way to Star City. All over Felicity. Who, like us, is like, “You just, like, run back in time? All the time?”

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NOC Recaps The Flash: It’s a Wonderful Reverse Life

We’re back! I think? Barry Allen is living an alternate reality with both of his parents. He’s retained his powers, but he’s spent the last three months laying low, summoning courage to speak to Iris West, hugging his mom and dad, and watching a yellow-clad Flash take care of Central City for a change.

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NOC Recaps Voltron Legendary Defender: Get In Formation

When Netflix announced a reboot of the Voltron franchise, the inner child in me jumped for joy. More, I felt an instant connection to my identity as an Asian American. You see, when I think of Voltron, I’m instantly transported back to the 5th grade where I spent my time insisting to my American friends that, in the Philippines, Voltron (and a live-action TV show that turned out to be Super Sentai) was a thing before the Power Rangers. My friends wouldn’t believe me and would only laugh harder when I’d proffer that not only was Voltron a thing, but that it was actually better than the Power Rangers.

Voltron is tied, then, to that part of me that identifies as distinctly Asian American and to finally see a reboot that introduces this great franchise to a new generation is such a treat. That the first episode starts off with such great quality makes it like TV lumpia for me. Clocking in at just over an hour, the ambitious attempt to set and sketch the universe that this iteration of Voltron in is not only given space via quality writing and animation, but also time in this outsized episode. More, a roster of recognizable names lead by The Walking Dead’s Steven Yeun as Keith, along with delightful surprise Rhys Darby as comic relief via Princess Allura’s (more on her in a bit) right-hand man, Coran.

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NOC Recaps Supergirl: A New Kind of Hope

One of the more enjoyable parts of Supergirl’s inaugural season is the refreshing and bold decision to place this National City hero squarely in the present as a Millennial. The bright and optimistic (and inclusionary!) perspective is drawn clearly in Kara’s idealistic worldview and personified by the bright and hopeful characters she has chosen to surround herself with (more on that in a minute). If Arrow is about the fight against a cold cynicism with The Flash about overcoming tragedy via the love of family, then Supergirl is about staring down the challenges of life with hope and optimism.

The strength of Supergirl the show, however, is in its ability to weave the moments that threaten its idealism with the technicolor moments of triumph its fans have come to savor. In that way, “Better Angels” does well in representing the thesis of Supergirl as it closes out its first year.

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