Saturday Morning Brain Drain [4/2/23]

Image via NetFlix

What I Watched: Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, previously recommended by many of you – and you were right, it is great fun. It is timely in that the villain is an Elon Musk-ish creep. Here is what The Guardian says:

The first one was good … this one is better: an ingenious, headspinningly preposterous and enjoyable new whodunnit romp featuring Daniel Craig as the legendary detective from the deep south, Benoit Blanc…Glass Onion is never anything less than entertaining, with its succession of A-lister and A-plus-lister cameos popping up all over the place. And Johnson uncorks an absolute showstopper of a flashback a half-hour or so into the action, which then unspools back up to the present day, giving us all manner of cheeky POV-shift reveals. Craig’s outrageous leisure-themed outfits are a joy and Monáe gives a tremendously likable comic performance as the woman with more than one secret to reveal and more than one grievance to hold against Norton’s loathsome Musk-ish plutocrat. Are eccentric detectives the new superheroes?

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery Trailer

What I Read: An assortment of series continuations, including Magic Tides (Kate Daniels: Wilmington Years Book 1) by Ilona Andrews, Demon Betrayed (Demon Enforcers Book 5) by Jenn Stark, and Monster In The Mirror (Shadowvale Book 6) by Kristen Painter.

Magic Tides was excellent, an as-expected continuation of the Kate Daniels series. “The world has suffered a magic apocalypse. It comes in waves, without warning, and vanishes as suddenly as it appears. When magic is up, planes drop out of the sky, cars stall, and electricity dies. When magic is down, guns work and spells fail. Magic waves feed on technology, gnawing down skyscrapers to skeletal husks. Monsters prowl the ruined streets, shapeshifters stalk their prey; and the Masters of the Dead, necromancers driven by their thirst of knowledge and wealth, pilot blood-crazed vampires with their minds.”

Demon Betrayed was just okay. I prefer her Wilde Magic series, and am a little tired of angsty fallen angles. This book takes place after the culmination of the Wilde series, and includes characters from both.

Monster In The Mirror was a riff on Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, with mystery and love interests added. I like the Shadowvale series, based on the premise of a protected town and the monsters who live there. The author’s website is out of date, so this most recent release isn’t shown there.

What I Listened To: lower energy music to match my chronically exhausted state of being.

Residue – Benjamin Clementine; more* – I Believe In You; True Love (Make Me Believe) WILDES (feat. The Flaming Lips); and Big Scary – Asking Right.

Thank you for playing Brain Drain! How are you, dearest DeadSplinterites? Darling ones, how are you surviving the longest month ever?

About Elliecoo 494 Articles
Four dogs, one partner. The dogs win.


  1. Watched:  The Pledge.  A terribly disturbing film about a cop who knows who the killer is, but can’t close the case before he retires–so he weaves an incredibly complex web of manipulation in order to try and get the guy.  The whole movie is depressing as hell, but well done at the same time.

    Listened:  This week’s stop on the best engineered albums of all time brings us to Let it Bleed by the Rolling Stones.  Released in 1969, this was the last album on which the band’s founder and original leader, Brian Jones, appeared.  Jones’ alcoholism and drug addiction had gotten to the point where the band couldn’t rely on him anymore and they fired him in the middle of principal tracking.  Jones was found dead at the bottom of his swimming pool a month later.

    This album is very much geared in a blues and country feel, with some tracks having almost no rock influence at all.  This is also the album which featured Keith Richards’ first lead vocal performance, on You Got the Silver.

    The sound on this album is just incredible.  All the instruments are so well balanced that nothing gets lost.  For a 1969 analog recording, the frequency range and response is also very impressive.  In my opinion, the best album the Stones ever did, all the way around.


  2. I watched Violent Night. I really wanted to like it, but wow did that stink.

    David Harbour as an angry sledgehammer swinging Santa is an idea that writes itself. Unfortunately, whoever made this tried to take over and jammed a really stupid setup and loaded up characters a ton of pointless motivation.

    Just no idea how to setup and pace action.  I don’t know could have signed off on this before shooting began.

    I also watched The Commuter, which was also dumb but much better. Liam Neeson plays an ex cop who gets tangled up in a murder plot on the commuter train he rides to his new job after he retired from the police.

    The story is much more economical and better paced. It sets up its rules and lets the story unwind from there. It’s not great, but it’s decent Liam Neeson.

  3. what i watched : angel has fallen

    which….was about what you’d expect from a has fallen movie…within the first 5 minutes you’ll have figured out the basic outline of what the plot will be who the main baddy is and who the surprise bet you never expected me baddy is

    and thats fine…this is not a movie needs you to fact its better you dont…coz the plot has some holes and questionable decision making…its slightly slower paced than the previous movies…coz everyones getting old

    but hey…president morgan freeman 🙂

    what im reading : the library at mount char as per @hannibal s recommendation….it arrived yesterday so im only a couple chapters in and cant say much about it other than that its off to a fairly mad start and seems intent on getting madder

    and listening to : fever ray

    • @farscythe I can’t wait to hear what you think when you’ve read more. It’s the most insanely violent book I’ve ever read, lol. The ending dragged a bit for me but I really liked it overall.

      • @hannibal i will let you know… im rationing myself to a couple chapters a night as im trying to make my new reading material last me a wee while (im quite capable of devouring books….but then ill have nothing new left to read)

        i should have finished it by next brain drain tho…probably a little sooner

        so far its an entertaining read tho

  4. My energy level has been low lately too, the tunes are perfect. I never heard Benjamin Clementine, I don’t know how I missed him. But I will be listening to more, thanks.
    I’m watching the third season of All Creatures Great and Small on PBS, it’s quiet comfort TV.
    Started a new book this week, I’ve finished my big chores for the day and expect to read the rest of it this weekend. I’ll talk about it next weekend.

  5. Still rewatching Star Trek Discovery.

    Finally got around to watching Magic Mike because a cousin and a friend were both aghast I’d never seen it. I don’t understand the appeal at all of that movie. No one has any acting talent, the dancing sucks, there’s no point to the plot, and seeing men just hip thrust at the floor is boring.

  6. @elliecoo I really, really wanted to like the magic tides book, but I just can’t get into Andrews’ writing. My best friend loves her stuff, too!


    Recently read – The Librarian of Crooked Lane by C. J. Archer, which was… ok. I’m willing to read the next book and see if it improves, though.

    Serpent in Heaven by Charlaine Harris, book 4 of the Gunnie Rose series. These books have wildly inventive worldbuilding and I hope there will be more of them!

    Sacrifice Moon by Julie Fortune, a Stargate SG1 book. They took it away on Netflix, so now I have to get my Stargate fix by reading them lol.

    The Emma Project by Sonali Dev, book 4 of the Rajes series. I was seriously disappointed in this last one… I have rarely wanted to smack a main character so much!

    Slippery Creatures by K. J. Charles, the first of a mystery series that also has some m/m romance. Charles is a really good writer, almost Heyer-esque (well, except for the dirty bits… Heyer never wrote ones like that!!), and I really enjoy her books.

    Currently listening to – Soul of the Deep by Natasha Bowen. I don’t find it quite as good as the first one, Skin of the Sea, but still enjoying listening to it.

    I watched the movie Parenthood the other day… I loved this movie so much when I was a kid (I had a HUGE crush on Steve Martin. Yes, I was a weird kid.) It holds up pretty well, surprisingly.

    • Recently read – The Librarian of Crooked Lane by C. J. Archer, which was… ok. I’m willing to read the next book and see if it improves, though.” – Exactly. I like much of Archer’s writing and hope book two will be more engaging. @HoneySmacks

  7. …having opted to watch that “see how they run” effort instead a few weeks back I tried “amsterdam” on disney+…christian bale isn’t my favorite & things based on a true story are a bit of a lottery…but it was actually pretty good?

    …funny & sort of ridiculous to the point of largely offsetting some fairly unpleasant realities that, as it turns out, to a somewhat greater extent than you might hope were the true story elements

    …also checked out the hero/mask anime on netflix which in addition to being pretty good (thank you for the suggestion) is unusually intelligible for the genre…although the weird london-but-not setting does it’s best to throw me for a loop…armed police isn’t too hard to allow for but little details like tube platforms where the logos on the walls say “underground” across them where the name of the station/stop would be & the like render it distinctly uncanny valley-ish as it turns out…though that’s more of an observation than a criticism

    …the other thing I meant to remember to mention was that I read something called the laidlaw trilogy by a guy called william macilvenney…the titular laidlaw being a police detective in glasgow…the first one was written in the late 70s…& they’re apparently considered to have been both an inspiration to ian rankin (apparently he wrote to the author to ask if it would be ok to dedicate the second rebus novel to him but he misplaced the letter & failed to reply, which judging by the rest of that interview was both characteristic and possibly more related to modesty than ineptitude) & the genre (which I’d not heard termed as such but am fairly familiar with) of “tartan noir”?

  8. TWD update season 10. Yoooooooo the Whisperers killed the princeling! I cackled like the evilest witch of the west coast when I saw his undead head mounted on a pike. I’m sure the crows were startled off the roof and cawed bloody murder with me. Thank you, I feel vindicated for not giving up on season 9. Negan is now all charm no bite but I’m ok with that. Is Rick Grimes never coming back (don’t answer that)? I expected the season to be split between the known communities and wherever he got flown off to. I miss his bowlegged bromance with Daryl.

  9. It’s Six Nations time, so I’ll be watching a fuckton of rugby.

    Anyone else watch That 90’s Show?  First few episodes were pretty good.  You don’t see a lot of the old crew besides Kitty and Red.  I wish we could get to see how Hyde turned out.

    I really liked the first couple of episodes of Poker Face.  Natasha Lyonne plays the same sort of character over and over again, but she does it so well.

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