I Love Fleabag

Hello, my name is Adrian Manuel and I am addicted to Fleabag.

After weeks of seeing Phoebe Waller-Bridge pop up in a rolling stream of gifs, hearing endlessly about “that menopause scene,” and reading thirsty reactions concerning a “Hot Priest,” all with zero context whatsoever, I finally decided to see what the fuss was about— if only for context.

I was sold by the first cold open. (And, as of writing this, I have ordered a copy of Fleabag: The Play and am looking up various ways I can get “Phoebe Waller-Bridge” tattooed on my person. HELP) Continue reading

My Top 5 MCU Films

ENDGAME IS HERE, Y’ALL. This is not a drill.

Now, I have A LOT of thoughts on the movie, but in the interest of everyone going to see Endgame (and me going again twice, probably three times), I’ll refrain from posting until after opening weekend. In the meantime – and in the spirit of the mammoth Marvel celebration this weekend will undoubtedly be – I’d like to zero in on my 5 favorite MCU movies.

As Marvel Studios churns out excellent fanfare year after year, a list like this gets harder to pin down. *I had a version of this last year prior to Infinity War, but I was SO indecisive about what made the cut and what didn’t that, ultimately, I elected to shelve this list.

Dawn of Endgame and I have FINALLY settled on my clear picks. This of course is subject to change as time passes— because time, I believe, is the true determiner of a film’s greatness and impact. But I’m getting ahead of myself. (*Deep sigh*) Here they are, finally: Continue reading

The ‘Game of Thrones’ Deadpool (Fun)

“Winterfell” was quite the crowd-pleaser, wasn’t it? Sporting an echo-introduction harkening back to the very first episode (symmetry, man), the surviving Stark children FINALLY united, Arya laying down the tracks for a possible romance, Sansa in total command of herself and her people, Dany showing Jon how to train a dragon; all of our heroes (mostly) in one pivotal locale. It’s almost too good to be true!

You just KNOW something horrible is about to happen.

Having marathoned the past 7 seasons and getting a better read on some bits of foreshadowing, I think it’s past time to lay down some fun death predictions. Now, I’m not betting that GoT will go out Hamlet-style, but if everyone *were to bite the dust, how would they go? Again, just having fun with this because even as a book fan, I’ve never been able to predict where the show would end up post-ASOIF flow. If you’re looking to place actual bets, DM me and we’ll exchange Venmo accounts and discuss odds.

 

CERSEI – liver failure (she drinks SO MUCH)

JAIME – honor

DAENERYS – pride

JON SNOW – Ygritte’s ghost

THEON – what is dead may never die

SAMWELL – he’s a stand-in for GRRM so he’ll live 👍

TYRION – also liver failure (he drinks and knows things, remember?)

imageTORMUND – chasing Brienne

BRIENNE – running away from Tormund

EURON – a Bam Margera stunt gone wrong

THE HOUND – like a boss

ARYA – *dies* *steals death’s face* *lives*

DAVOS – hell to pay with his wife

VARYS – oh, he’s still here???

JORAH – friend zone asphyxia

SANSA – *won’t, for she is the one true queen of this writer’s heart ❤️

JOE JONAS – mysterious circumstances 😈

MELISANDRE – sheath to a certain great sword of a certain great prophecy

BRAN – will live on in the annals of meme history

 

See y’all on Sunday. Cheers! ❄️🔥🐺🐉🦑🦁🧟‍♂️⚔️👑

My Daughter and Captain Marvel

When my daughter begged to go see Captain Marvel again, I knew this was something special. She never begs me for anything, you see. She tells me we’re going to McDonald’s; that I’m getting her a new toy, or that we’re making another tub of slime. (Please, my living room, it looks like the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards. HELP) When I picked her up the week following Captain Marvel’s release, she came out of her classroom sporting a marvelous jumper and I knew.

I did the same thing after watching 2000’s X-Men and I wore no other shirts to school except ones that had Wolverine on them, and again after 2002’s Spider-Man. My little captain told me about her favorite parts of the movie while stressing that though she had seen it already, she HAD to see it twice. I said we’ll go this weekend. No, she meant today. Like, right now.

I said okay, but we have to do her homework first.

She told me she’d get started during the drive. She REALLY wanted to see Captain Marvel again. Continue reading

On Gaming and Re-embracing an Identity

I knew I was going to buy Anthem when I saw the preview last year. It wasn’t the premise that sold me, despite the high-concept sci-fi allure a la Mass Effect, nor was it the fact that you get to fly around like a knockoff Iron Man— which looked freakin’ breathtaking.

The heroes you play are called freelancers.

I fell in love.

As a freelance writer, my days aren’t nearly as action-packed, but I gotta say, sometimes it really does feel like you’re fighting enemies (an insanely competitive job market), giant bugs (sending and resending invoices), and massive titans (clients who aren’t specific, or keep changing the terms). Anthem, too, sports some double entendres that I feel deep down in my core. At one point a nemesis says, “you’re useless, freelancer.” It’s like, I know. Sheeesh.

I haven’t been this ecstatic about a video game in 4 years. Because 4 years ago, I thought I was done with gaming. Continue reading