Posted in Uncategorized

Cougar Town: In which we learn that 40 is the new 20, but crazy is timeless.

Week 2 of my new blog

Pilot Era

First aired: 23rd September 2009


Courtney Cox Jules Kiki Cobb

Christa Miller Ellie Torres

Busy Phillipps Laurie Keller

Dan Byrd Travis Cobb

Brian Van Holt Bobby Cobb

Ian Gomez Andy Torres

Josh Hopkins Grayson Ellis

Plot: Jules Cobb is a recently divorced 40 year old estate agent. The episode starts with her watching the local high school football team (the Cougars) with her 20 something friend/assistant Laurie and her 17 year old son Travis. Jules is lonely and wants to get back out there, eyeing up younger men, while her son eyerolls. She goes home and the next morning vents to her next door neighbour/best friend Ellie before watching her neighbour across the way (also 40 something and recently divorced) Grayson as he waltzes his latest college-aged conquest to her cab ride home. There’s some banter between the two and a quick visit from her former golf pro…

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Posted in Uncategorized

The Journey Begins: In which we learn that I have watched a LOT of TV, seriously a LOT!

This is a new site I have been doing, quite curious to see how it goes.

Pilot Era

I am and always have been a comic fan, I am currently writing 2 or 3 blogs which state that fact quite eloquently. But as a man who was born into a nation with 3 channels that has watched it grow into 300+, I am just as much a TV guy. I have watched a lot of TV in my life and I have enjoyed that almost as much. Finding that hidden gem, or that series that you get and few others do, that sharing of something you love with someone and watching them get it, or howl with laughter as a sense of humour you thought was foreign to everyone but you, is something that you share. I like that, TV is something you can share with someone. With busy lives, lots to do and a son to raise, often there’s little that the MIGHTY Rosie and I can…

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Posted in Mental Health Struggles, Miscellaneous

For me, 2019 was, well it’s been a year.

2018 has come and gone. The start of 2019 has been a mixed affair, but am trying to see it as a fresh start, because after this last year, I needed it to be.

In the world outside it was a tumultuous one, with another year of Trump and May dominating the news along with the ever escalating clusterfuck that is Brexit. So the backdrop of my 2018 was division, despair and distraction. Seemed almost fitting to be honest.

Last year I stopped my meds and ended my therapy, ending a chapter in my recovery from my breakdown. It’s now more of an issue of managing things, being able to be aware when things aren’t good and act, rather than wallowing. It’s been a year of being able to handle it when things are challenging. It’s also the year of having to handle things being challenging.

Work has proven as stressful as it ever was, only now I’m not medicated to hell and can actually experience the stress fully. It’s been too much for our small little department to cope with and we have lobbied to get another person on staff. This took 9 months and after three days, I was glad that they were off on the Thursday/Friday of their first week. The second week went almost as badly, the third was more manageable and by the following Monday, he had quit, claiming he couldn’t handle the job. That is the kind of crap my job brings me. Then there’s been all the run up to Christmas and the need to do a month’s work in a little over 2 weeks. But there’s hope, we have a new, new person who seems to be more capable and very pleasant to be around, 2018 might have been rough at work, but 2019 has started well enough to maintain that hope.

At home, things had started to look up with an increase in communication between me and the MIGHTY Rosie. Super Sam has had stuff at school to be dealt with, which we did as a team and he is as good as he ever is. The MIGHTY Rosie has had health issues to deal with as well as other struggles that are not mine to share, so I won’t do. Needless to say, there’s been stuff that’s been tough to get through.

So by the time we got to November, we’d been through a lot of stuff, but worse was to come.

2 Months ago, Wilma the WTF Dog was killed by a car.

That was hard to write to be honest, it’s why a look at 2018 has taken several weeks to write, since I knew I would have to say that. It was a car accident and over very quickly, but since all three of us saw it, it was still very traumatic and sudden. We kept our shit together for our son, who took it hard. I’m not going to say more than that, it’s not my tale to tell after all. But the loss was on a greater scale than I have ever experienced before. She was a member of our family, our little girl and her being gone tore a hole in our family. We miss her still and out of the corner of my eye is one of the best pictures we have of her. At least seeing her no longer hurts, I no longer flash to that moment constantly, though that took a long time to get there. Everyone has been great, especially those who also have dogs themselves. I was back in work the next day, one member of staff wondered how the hell I was even in work. All I got was a day off from answering calls, that’s it. To be honest it took the shine off Christmas a little and whilst I had fun, there was always a tinge of sadness that came with that. She never got another Christmas with us. We tried to get back to normal, but it’s only at that point we realised that we were a family who had a dog, there was no more normal without one.

Work became difficult as a month’s work was needed in less than three weeks and so much work had to be re-done and it was draining. Then we heard that we could get another puppy, a family had posted on a re-homing website that there was two young kids, one more on the way and no way to take care of a new puppy. No red-flags, so we got the money together after a long and intense conversation made the joint decision to rehome the dog with us.

Her name is Lottie and that is going to be another story.

2018 was a bit of an armpit of a year, but we survived, we thrived and we as a family are stronger than we have ever been before.

There’s more to tell, but to be honest, I just needed this stuff out there right now.


More soon internet people.


Posted in Miscellaneous

For the Geek in me 2018 was Awesome part 3: Films

​In a ‘challenging’ year there it’s been difficult to get to the cinema as much as I would have liked and it’s meant that this was the easiest of lists to write, since I have only been the cinema about 5 times, but again, it was a quality over quantity situation.

Black Panther

A couple of years ago, I watched the film Captain America: Civil War and a couple of things kind of impressed me, sadly neither was Captain America, nor the Civil War plot. Those two things are Spider-Man and T’Challa, the Black Panther. Both of whom got films off the back of it. Out of those two, this was the better one. Borrowing from several points of the history of the Black Panther comics as well as a few thematic touches from Hamlet (or the Lion King) this was a film that fleshed out a fictional nation in two hours better than over 30 years of comics. There was action, more than a little humour and a villain who’s motivations where more than a little understandable. There’s no one in this film who didn’t go great work and Martin Freeman was in this. This was a MCU film that fit well within it, but didn’t really need the rest of the films to make it work. The silliest this film got was Andy Serkis’ bonkers portrayal of Ulysses Klaw which was funny, without costing him menace.

This was a good film for the whole family, it’s not hard to sell this film, but if I had to all I need to say is War Rhinos.

Deadpool 2


Couple of years ago there was some ‘leaked’ internet footage of a Deadpool test with Ryan Reynolds in  comics faithful Deadpool costume, this caused the net to go nuts. I saw that and hoped that it’d lead to a half decent version of the Merc with a Mouth, getting to the big screen (I am NOT counting X-Men Origins Wolverine) and was quietly optimistic. Then Deadpool came out in Feb 2016 and not only did it not disappoint, it was the perfect comic book movie. It was it’s own thing, rather than a direct adaptation, but it was very much faithful to the spirit of the character. Then at the end, in a homage to Ferris Bueller Deadpool mentioned that in a sequel, they would get Cable. As a big 90’s comic mark, I loved Cable at the time and still appreciate much of the more recent appearances. When Josh Brolin was cast, I was equally optimistic. Even more so, when they mentioned Domino and other members of X-Force would be in the film too. So when I saw the second film? Vindicated. Reynolds was as excellent as ever and the rest of the cast stepped up to join him. This was again an original story that hung together on the strength of it’s action, heart and comedy. I don’t know if this was as good as the first, but I really enjoyed it and bought the Bu-Ray as soon as it came out, highly recommended.

The Christmas Chronicles

I haven’t been as Christmassy as I wanted to be this year (more on that on another post) and found that apart from the traditional three films at Christmas (Lethal Weapon for the MIGHTY Rosie, Arthur Christmas for SuperSam and Die Hard for me) I haven’t really been into anything Christmassy until my sister in law (who I shall refer to as CrazyOwl) recommended this to the MIGHTY Rosie & I. This film was a usual schmaltzy holiday tale with one thing different. There was no jolly and vuncular Santa with a spare tyre and fluffy coat, this was Kurt Russell as a Santa of Action. It had a musical number, a car chase and more than a couple of surprises and was exactly what the doctor ordered, because I felt as Christmassy as hell when it was done and we all watched it three times. Even if you are not a fan of the holiday TV movie genre, this was so well done that it stood on its own as a good film. Cannot recommend this enough.

Avengers: Infinity War


One of the best things about comics and yet also the worst thing about comics are the ‘events’. Big comic book crossovers with lots of tie-ins, larger than life stories and this year, Marvel put one on the big screen. It had funny moments, dramatic moments and even genuinely touching ones. Everyone was on form and I mean everyone, with a cast of over 20 principle protagonists and Josh Brolin acting his way through CGI as a more sympathetic Thanos. It was full of quotable lines, awesome set pieces and twists and turns, just like a 90’s event shoud be. This was the culmination of what the MCU has been building towards for the last 10 years and 20 films and it was worth waiting for. The only reason I didn’t put this at the end was two fold: One – this is only part one of a two-part film series and it looked like it. Two – It wasn’t the last film I saw this year that was…



My first X-Men comic of the 90’s was X-Factor 70, written by Peter David. I followed David through his run on X-Factor, till he flew off to DC. At DC he was given the less than stellar character of Aquaman. I found this comic by accident, mistaking it for the Tom Grummett drawn Superboy comic of that era. Far from the ineffectual Superfriends-esque man who talks to fish and little else, David’s Aquaman was brash, a bit cocky and far from being the friendly hero of the past. In issue 2, he lost his hand and from there, became more of a barbarian king than a super-hero. He grew out his hair, grew a beard and wore less clothes than before. I loved this Aquaman, who took no shit and kicked several kinds of ass. Then there were several retcons and reboots and we get a retro-modern Aquaman with the lighthouse dad and royal mum and the yellow and green, short back and sides look. When DC began expanding it’s movie characters beyond Batman, they cast Jason Momoa as Aquaman. Fresh of his time as Conan the Barbarian and a year on Games of Thrones as Kahl Drogo, Momoa was ideal as the 90’s Aquaman and it became clear that this was the reto-origin version, with touches of the more extreme version of the 90’s and in Justice League, Momoa nailed it. He was gruff and dismissive of Batman and brash and gung-ho in battle and when I heard that there would be a film, I was actually excited. Okay, lets repeat that, excited about an Aquaman film.

So me and the MIGHTY Rosie got the posh seats at the cinema and watched it on a rare Saturday morning together and you know what, despite my high expectations, this was better than I could have hoped. Momoa in comfortable in the role and is clearly having a lot of fun. Amber heard is … there as is NIcole Kidman and we get some half decent supporting cast work. The only thing that did strike me was how anyone would cast Willem Dafoe as the caring mentor character is somewhat surprising. I spent the whole film waiting for him to turn and be revealed as another badguy. The effects are amazing and the action sequences are as exciting as CGI can make them. This was a big blockbuster film that really hit the spot and I left the cinema eager to watch this film again.

Well that’s that for another year. With another Avengers film, Captain Marvel, the other Captain Marvel and Detective Pikachu. It looks like 2019 will get me back to the cinema even more than this year.

Posted in TV Stuff

For the Geek in me, 2018 was awesome part 2: TV

​In a ‘challenging’ year there have been a number of times I needed to get out of my own head and just enjoy this and whilst pickings have been slim, what I have found to enjoy I really have enjoyed. While I have watched a lot of continuing stuff from previous years, there was also a few new shows to enjoy.

Doctor Who

I am treating this as a new series, with the entire new cast and producer. After the up and frequent downs of Capaldi’s era, a change was needed. We ended up with a surprisingly enjoyable Bradley Walsh along with a pair of relatively unknown actors as companions, with Jodie Whittaker excelling as the newly female Doctor. It’s a lighthearted show with moments of depth and pathos. This back to basics approach has left me as excited and it’s nice to be excited about Doctor Who again.


I am not a fan of ‘reality’ TV and so this show with it’s contrived premise and forced tensions should have been unwatchable, but I found this rivetting. Eight women of various fitness levels and backgrounds are paired with eight personal trainers of differing disciplines to compete in teams of two in a series of fitness based competitions to win up to $500,000.

It’s heavily product placed and much of the drama is contrived, but with its theme of empowerment, making positive changes and competition moving you forward it was a surprisingly entertaining show. Watching these women grow in confidence as they acquired the strength they felt they lacked was really satisfying. This was a show that proves that whatever health-based changes you make to your body, it’s the changes to your mind that matter the most.

You’re the Worst

I wasn’t sure what to make of this show when I caught it at the start of the year. It was a romantic comedy, with mostly unlikeable characters. To be honest, that sounds like most romantic comedies to me, but these characters are meant to be unlikeable. Publicist Gretchen and moderately successful author Jimmy are the worst people any of their friends know and sort of end up together without really trying. Add in Jimmy’s flatmate the well meaning veteran Edgar and Gretchen’s best friend Lyndsay who is trying her best to be happy in a marriage that she’s not really invested in, but lords her getting married first over her older sister, Jimmy’s ex. No one here is nice, or trying to be a better person, they’re either oblivous, narcissistic or some combination of both. There’s a season long narrative, but that sort of gives the series a nice ending point and so when the 2nd season started last month, I decided to leave it at one season which I enjoyed. It’s not for everyone, but I really did enjoy this.

Roast Battle

Jimmy Carr has made a career out of being a little nastier than his peers. From his insulting introductions on 8 out of 10 Cats does Countdown, to his relaunch of Your Face or Mine alongside Katherine Ryan, he’s best known for nasty jokes, quick one-liners and being singled out for tax avoidance. He takes that talent for tearing people a new one to it’s natural extension with Roast Battle. Roast Battle isn’t original, it comes from an american show with Jeff Ross and Brian Moses, the latter being on here as a referee. The concept is simple, two comedians trade insults and barbed jokes, getting five jokes each with little to no restrictions and the panel (made up of Jimmy Carr, Katherine Ryan and someone known to misbehave in public, we’ve had Russell Brand and Johnathan Ross so far) judge the winner. The jokes are cutting and quite often below the belt. A particular highlight was Bobby Mair and his wife Harriet against eachother and her best line being “You look adopted.” the whole crowd went “Oooooh” at that one. There’s been best friends, girlfriend/girlfriend, husband/wife and at one point father and son. There’s bad language and savage jokes aplenty, but none of it feels mean spirited. This is sparring as much as anything else and it’s made me laugh as hard as anything else this year.

A Discovery of Witches

There are very few tropes that get an airing as often as vampires and other supernaturals living in secret. Twilight, Moonlight, Blood Ties, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the Vampire DIaries, Midnight Texas, True Blood and others besides, so it wasn’t particularly something I had any real interest in, when the marketing started. That said, like the good little geek I am, I gave it a go. There wasn’t the usual flashy effects from day one, the nighttime settings and the angry and tortured vampire. This was mostly set in Oxford, during the day and the vampire was calm and composed the whole time. This was about a society of vampires, witches and demons co-existing through compromise and strict segregation. Diana Bishop (a witch) tries to research a book on the history of alchemy and this brings year into contacts with Matthew Clairmont (a vampire) who needs it for his research into the declining numbers of vampires, witches and demons. This book is wanted by nearly everyone on each side and a massive game of politics and magic grows into a war that threatens the peace between the creatures and the safety of this witch and vampire, who find themselves drawn to one another.

This show is beautifully shot and acted with conviction and nuance by a very capable cast working from a fascinating story with more than a few twists and turns which left the first season with something of a cliffhanger, which I only realised was a season ender after the episode finished. With DVDs, streaming services and catch up TV, I very rarely have anything like a regular schedule for any Tv, but this was a show that the MIGHTY Rosie and I watched this religiously.

New TV this year was very much about quality over quantity, but there was a lot of good stuff as there is every year and no doubt lots and lots of things that I missed as well as stuff that started last year that continued to entertain and with news series slated to start soon and new series of current favourites like Star Trek Discovery, Bojack Horseman and Orville either starting soon or already started, 2019 looks to be another embarassment of riches.

Two down, one to go and it’s back to the cinema.

Posted in Comics n Stuff

For the Geek in me, 2018 was awesome part 1: Comics

In a ‘challenging’ year there have been a number of times I needed to get out of my own head and just enjoy this and whilst pickings have been slim, what I have found to enjoy I really have enjoyed.I found a few titles that were new for this year that left an impression.


Domino is a background character from X-Force back in the 90’s. She had potential that has been glimpsed, but never really developed. Gail Simone took interesting b-list characters and fleshed them out in Birds of Prey and Secret Six for DC so was the idea person to give Domino the starting role she deserved. It has action, comedy, high stakes and a relatively continuity light story. It was above all fun.  With representation being very important, a high quality comic with a female lead, mostly female cast and written by a skilled writer is important when the majority of the industry has a predominantly white male feel to it.


Spinning out of an event I didn’t read about a character that I don’t like came this gem.

Take Indiana Jones, add a touch of Highlander and splash in some Conan the Barbarian and wings and you get this guy. This is a fun book that has action, mystery and a flying barbarian who does feel the need to wear shirts. The art is something of a selling point here with Bryan Hitch back on form. It’s not epoch making stuff, but it’s the best Hawkman I have seen in a long time.
Superman/Action Comics

Superman turned 80 this and in a convenient bit of timing,  Action Comics reached the milestone of 1000 issues. As a fresh start sort of thing, DC just as they did in the late 80’s handed their flagship character to one of Marvel’s big guns who wrote a 6 issue series called Man of Steel. Taking the John Byrne told was Brian Michael Bendis on words and a  rotating cast of artists which attempted to breathe new life into an 80 year old character that many struggle to get. Mission accomplished. Bendis has a knack for dialogue and clawing new ideas from older ones and he writes a new but still very recognisable Superman. We have the Daily Planet, Lois Lane and a Metropolis that works as a city and a character. We have new histories, New villains and it’s the best the character had been in a long time.

Fantastic Four

With the media rights held at Fox, Marvel has downplayed their First Family for the last few years. Human Torch was in the Inhumans titles before arrives in Uncanny Avengers, whilst the Thing was in Guardians of the Galaxy and then Infamous Iron Man, the pair reunited in the excellent Marvel Two in One, which led to the return of the FF. After a long run on Amazing Spider-Man, Dan Slott and Sara Pichelli crafted a comic that feels like the Fantastic Four, this was fun sci-fi with heart that reminded me why I like the characters in the first place.  I enjoyed the start and am looking forward to the next issue, which is waiting upstairs as I write this. 😁


The year started well for the children of the Atom. X-Men Blue and X-Men Gold were really good and it was joined by X-Men Red and the 5 week long X-Men Black, which focuses on the villains as well as a story that reinvigorated Apocalypse as a character. Then came Exterminated the 5 part story which ended the original X-Men in their teens pulled into the future story in a fairly satisfying way. This also ended X-Men’s Blue and Gold series and so it was relaunched under its old name Uncanny X-Men with a weekly schedule and rotating creators, giving you X-Content every week, without the stress of following multiple titles. It’s fun, well put together with a compelling story and a huge cast. It’s the most interested in the X-Men I have been since Whedon did Astonishing 15 years ago.

Also the side projects are good too, with Ed Piskor doing a condensed history of the X-Men in Grand Designs, which was absolutely amazing as a story and a look at the history and continuity of what can be a tangled ball of continuity string at the best of times.

Posted in Mental Health Struggles, Miscellaneous

Conquering our fears and pain

My beloved pet Wilma was in a car accident 2 weeks ago and died. This has shattered our family. I had to write that down, because if you hide away from saying or doing something, it gains power over you. It’s my first loss/trauma since my recovery from my breakdown and it has been both hard and also a yardstick of how I am doing these days. SuperSam and the MIGHTY Rosie are grieving and that is as much as I would say, since theirs is not my story. As the shock passes, the pain subsides and only the sadness and loss remain, it becomes necessary to get on the with the business of living again. We’ve ate healthier, we’ve played games, we’ve laughed, we’ve remembered, we’ve cried and then laughed again.

I’m not going to say much more than that on this subject, needless to say, family and friends have been amazingly supporting and understanding. A particular shout out to my mum and dad, who when I and my family needed them, were there in a flash and that meant a lot more to me than I expected.

So this had derailed much of what I wanted to say and do this month, but what I have done is get back to an older goal.

I have started driving.

I got a provisional license at 17/18 as most people did, but it was one of those things that people wanted for me and I felt that I should do, but it was never really something I wanted to do. In my 20’s I was always walking distance from anywhere and struggled money-wise, so it wasn’t a priority then. It my early 30’s I was enjoying my life with the MIGHTY Rosie, so it became something I would get around to. Then my breakdown happened. I have talked about that at length before, but needless to say depression and anxiety don’t really do well behind the wheel. But it’s something I should do. For my boy, it’s additional stuff for me to show him that learning is good. For my wife, it should take pressure of her to be the wheels all of the time. In case of emergency, it’s a useful life skill to have and mostly for me, since it’s a goal I can achieve and something I have been so very anxious about for so very long. I had a lesson booked last week, but as you can imagine, circumstances aside, I’d not be in the best place to try it last week. So last night I did.

It was terrifying, confusing, very alien and yet also amazing. All at the same time. Many if not most of you can and do drive, so this is no revelation, but to me, this was something of profound moment. Clutches, gears and the myriad things to keep an eye on seem to be a weakness so far, but my steering was good and only stalled the once. At 42, sometimes I have this feeling of I should have already done this with a lot of stuff, like I wasted a lot of my life. But my life led me to the MIGHTY Rosie, to being the man I am today, the dad I am and whoever I will be from here on in, so it’s time to add to that man. Terrified as I was yesterday, I did it. Scared as I am for the next one, I’ll do that too. Then the next and the next.

I have been on a journey for a while, now I am on a new one and to be honest, I am quite excited about where this will take me.

This month knocked me down, it broke me. I have wept, I have been comforted and comforted others, but I will as I have before get back up.

I have mantras and aphorisms which I share with my son.

“When do we fail?” I ask

“When we give up?” he replies

“So if we don’t give up, we never fail.”

If we don’t give up, we never fail. No matter what we are up against as long as we keep going, we can conquer the things that beset us.

I will get back to more regular posts, but right now, I just needed to say what I just said.

Love to you all internet people.

The Munky will return.


Posted in Miscellaneous


Due to a loss in the family, there was no post this weekend and I don’t know what will happen next.

The MIGHTY Rosie and SuperSam are fine, but grieving.

There’s more I want to say, but there aren’t words right now and I don’t think Morevember will carry on.


Posted in Mental Health Struggles, Miscellaneous

Stuck in the attic

Hello again internet people. I have started this post (but won’t finish it) from my new desk in my new office, in the attack of our shopfront office. This job has been at times an exercise in what I can have taken from me. I had an office, then another, then told to share, than put in a room with 16 other people. I had two printers and bit by bit was down to sharing a printer with 15 other people, despite my output being higher, not lower. Wednesday, that printer stopped working. I also lost phones for the day and now my new desk is a foot shorter. But all in all, have gained more than I have lost.

That left me with oft used idea of stripping your life down to the basics. The idea of removing anything from your life that you don’t actually need. There’s a degree of simplicity to that, which does appeal. I have been thinking about it on and off for a while, again inspired by work’s decisions and I have come to a decision about that.

I don’t agree.

While pruning the unpleasant elements of your life is a good idea, there are many people who I wouldn’t miss it they stayed out of my orbit, but the idea of only having the essentials seems rather well restrictive. It also sounds like survival. I survived for 36 years, until that broke me, after a long fight and a longer journey back, I have started to do more than survive. I have started to live. I have the things in my life I need. I have a job, a roof over my head and a loving family. But I also have wants as well. I don’t need to have a weekend away every now and again, but I want them, I appreciate them. After a day or two without it, I don’t need any phone, but being able to talk to the MIGHTY Rosie at any time is still a great thing. So yes, be mindful of the things you need, but also be kind to yourself. But the book you want to read, wear the clothes you feel comfy in, or pretty in. Drink the nicer coffee, eat the tasty food, walk in the sunshine. Survival is essential, but living is the goal.

Want is okay, because unless you are hurting someone, even yourself, what is the harm?

Be good to yourself.