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  1. Lottie and her grandparents were so sweet. I choked up at that part too, having talked on the phone with my elderly aunt this morning and just wishing I could spend some time with her face to face. Glad she got the handshake...but, should there really be a handshake anymore? Can we get a Hollywood elbow bump? Not as alliterative but a nod to the new normal. Really thought Rowan would be the one to go. I have to think that the producers played a part there, since Rowan is endlessly entertaining, even though his bakes haven't been good and he doesn't take direction. Mak seemed nice, just more reserved, so the producers probably wanted to milk at least one more week of Rowan's quirks.
  2. I really loved the winning look here...so much color and fun, and super sexy without looking trashy. It seemed a little odd to me that Charles said he knows how to create "extended size" lingerie because his sisters are bosomy, but he walked the talk! As a bosomy lady myself, his design definitely seemed the most supportive and flattering.
  3. Wallowing in nostalgia while reading this thread! Aww. I'm about halfway through watching the series, so far. 43 here and I was obsessed with the books as a kid. Claudia and the Phantom Phone Caller was what reeled me in in the bookstore, because I loved (still do) spoooooky things, and I was also (still am) somewhat OCD, so I couldn't start reading the series at the second book! The horror! My mom really loved the books too and we read them together a lot; I wish she were still here to watch this series with me. She always loved Dawn because Dawn was good at cleaning...the daughter she never had lol. I also remember we had to stop reading during the book where because we were both crying too hard. I'm mostly impressed with the casting, especially with the adults. Marc Evan Jackson is PERFECT as Mr. Spier. That had to be a difficult role to cast, finding someone who can convincingly portray an uptight single dad with some control issues, without making it seem like's he's controlling-bordering-on-creepy. The additional element of his character raising a biracial daughter also works well for his story. And I wasn't sure how I'd feel about Alicia Silverstone as Elizabeth, but I love her. She's so warm and relaxed; she really does seem like a cool mom without trying too hard to be the Cool Mom. A couple nitpicks: I've only seen her in one episode so far, but Charlotte Johansson seemed awfully baby-ish. She was 8 years old in the books, and very smart and mature. Here she just seemed like a kind of whiny little kid. I liked that they kept her mom a doctor, though, and gave her two moms. Since she's only in one book/episode, I could see why they made Mrs. Barrett almost evilly over the top for the series; but she was a much more realistic character in the book. She was still a mess and made lots of mistakes, but I don't think she was intentionally oblivious and self-involved the way they depicted her in the series.
  4. I'm enjoying this season quite a bit; I pretty much start out every season thinking that the over-the-top contestants and the beyond-silly producer videos and games will drive me away, but somehow I find it enjoyable enough to keep watching and by the time the worst/goofiest contestants are gone, I'm hooked. I think Alex is a great addition this season, and hope she comes back for more. Loved how she put on a sympathetic face for Eric's waterworks, but when he walked away, she looked at the camera and said something like "Give the guy a damn Emmy." Hee! Perfect combo of nice and sassy for this show. I believe Eric was actually emotional, but I also think he's the kind of person who just navigates through life on that level, and it can be a lot to take. Surprised to see Domaine leave; I thought that, especially since they seemed to be ramping up a rivalry between her and Darien, that she would make it to the finale. Ari is my favorite to win now. Annoying references to "Shirley" aside, she genuinely seems to be taking the notes she's given and continuously improving and offering good food.
  5. This will be a fine diversion, not as exciting as GBBO, but fun to see the creations. The two super artsy wacky Dutch guys are pretty awesome. Also, Nadja! I wonder what they will do with these huge sculptures though? At least the crew can eat the food after baking/cooking shows.
  6. Add me to the "L.A. Phil? What? Get off my lawn!" crowd. Especially on a cooking show... when Padma first said it, I thought "L.A. Fill," that it was some sort of food showcase. That said, I enjoyed the partnership and thought Gustavo Dudamel was absolutely delightful. Even if Eric limits himself a bit with his West African cuisine, I think it's more important to him to showcase it to a broader audience. He may not show enough versatility to win the title, but his appearances on the show are highlighting African cuisine to millions of people, which is a much bigger win.
  7. Yeah, we usually got a kick out of her and she is talented, but you could tell she was kicking up her accent schtick at the end ("Ahwwwl-monds?" Um, you got some fake Brooklyn in your fake Wiscaaansin/Rochesta/Boston/whatever, there, hon.), which is probably more on the producers than on her. It reminded me of Food Network Star when they kept forcing Damaris to be more Southern and down-home, and she ultimately won the whole thing with that affect. I liked Melissa throughout, so I was happy she won. None of the final cakes were perfect, but I did like hers the best. Those jingle bells were amazing, and a perfect complement to the colors of her blanket.
  8. Eww, really? Koine is one of my all time faves, and Kiki makes me ragey. She can do better! I've seen more mistakes this season than I ever have on this show. Not sure if they're overworking the dancers, giving them less rehearsal time, or if it's a slightly less talented field overall. Just kind of a bummer to see multiple slips and out-of-sync movements at this point in the competition. I wanted to like Fik-Shun and Mariah's number so much more than I did. Those two are amazing and could be magic together (see what I did there?) with the right routine. So I blame the choreography. It was just kind of boring. New choreo guy needs to step it up. When an ad-libbed response to a costume fail is the best part, you know your routine is missing something! I wonder if Lex's partners complain about getting whapped in the face by his little braids. I love him as a dancer, but that has been distracting. All that said, the final four are fine. I'd be happy with any of them winning. Not, like thrilled happy as I have been with some in the past, but happy. I think it's Bailey's to lose.
  9. She seemed to be peeling them verrrry slowly. So in addition to getting a labor-intensive ingredient that already put her behind, she didn't seem that familiar with the process of the peeling and shredding, which slowed her down even more. Poor kiddo. Trevin naming and constantly referring to his hedgehog as Kevin was cracking me up.
  10. That cracked me up too. My husband and I started rattling off "lemon kebabs, lemon scampi, lemon on the cob..." It was pretty obvious from early on that Dharma would be the one to go. He just couldn't quite pull everything together. The lime juicing was pretty cute, though. We've all been there, just not quite figuring something out that everyone else seems to know. I'm glad that they got this Angry Birds commercial over with early. It was annoying that the kids had to act so excited about it and that Valerie talked as if everyone knows these characters. Sorry we don't all know and love mediocre movies based on passe app games.
  11. I was pleasantly surprised to see Koine as a ballroom all-star. I actually didn't watch Benjamin that much because I was so focused on her (I missed the intro, so the whole time I kept thinking, "That really looks like Koine! Wait, was Koine ballroom? Wasn't she contemporary? Am I thinking of someone else?"). He was...fine. OMG, it IS! He just looks like someone farted in his general vicinity. Which, btw, the whole stank thing is overplayed in general, I think. It's kind of fun, but it keeps going more and more over the top. By the end of the series, one of the judges will be like, "That was STANK! I mean, I had to hold my breath, it was so foul. It was LITERALLY like getting sprayed by a skunk next to the port-a-potties at a taco festival held next to a sewage treatment plant! You go girl!"
  12. "Over the line" may be a poor choice of words since what Cindy did to Taystee was incomparably worse. It was still shocking to me though.
  13. It was obviously way over the line for Taystee to mail that letter, and made me say "DAMN!" out loud. Thinking about it some more, though, once the daughter gets over the shock of the news, would it really have to be so earth-shattering for their family? Obviously the daughter loves Cindy (as a sister, but still) and her adoptive mom/bio-grandma, and obviously Cindy has not been in a good place to raise her. I feel like the daughter is probably old enough to eventually understand that the family did what was best for her, even though they did it less than truthfully (rebuilding trust would be the hardest part, I'm sure). Cindy is one of the characters that has shown the most growth since her arrest, though she still definitely has a loooooong way to go. I'm sure it's Pollyanna-ish of me, but I want SOME happiness to come about for these characters by the end of the series. So far it's not looking too great. So I'm really hoping for the best for Cindy and her family.
  14. I'm happy with this first episode and looking forward to this season! Even the girl who went home seemed pretty talented; she recognized the mistake that she made and just had an all-around tough day. No clear favorites yet, but I do like the boy who sculpted a cat (Tarek, I think?), and the girl who has cystic fibrosis (amazing she is so active and athletic; that's such a tough disease). They both seem like real kids, without a lot of extra "adorability" piled on (like the girl with the pigtails, who seems a little old for those; darned if she still isn't truly adorable, though).
  15. Yeah, Janusz is...well, y'know...glass pun, shatter my whatever, something something glory hole. 😉 Except for in the finale, when he suddenly styled his hair like Tintin. What was that about?
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