The Marchly Happenings

Monday night, I brewed my first pitch of mead with my buddy Dan. I opted for a very basic recipe of just honey with a kolsch beer yeast. The effort went with only one hitch: I couldn’t find the stopper for my fermentation lock. Fortunately, Dan had a spare I borrowed. If you’re reading this, thanks Dan.

I was forewarned that to make it great, it’ll have to sit once bottled for about 6 to 12 months. If I do this again, I’m going to get a smaller (say 3 gallon) carboy and do some experimentation with various yeasts. A lot of sites and people insist that wine yeasts are the way to go. Perhaps next time.

While we were waiting for a few odds and ends, Dan and took to watching episodes of Firefly. Something tells me that I’m going to constantly get, “Do you watch Firefly?” often in response to my most recent short story. I’m certainly enjoying the themes of the show, but every once in a while they kind of settle into a Bones like sense of whimsy.

During the last episode I watched, Christina Hendricks of Drive and Mad Men guest starred as a village girl who tricks our Captain Mal (Nathan Fillion) into marrying him. Jayne (Adam Baldwin) is desiring of this girl where as the captain is not, such that Jayne attempts to barter with the captain: A high powered, customized rifle for the doe eyed village girl.

You got to admit that pictures like this made the show look like some WB50 teen drama.

You got to admit that pictures like this made the show look like some WB50 teen drama.

I’m sure that anyone with an anti-slavery sentiment would be glad to know that our dear captain decidedly turned down Jayne’s awful offer, as well as pushed the girl to be independent and null the marriage. The offer was in the spirit of comic relief: not so much in the offer itself (if it had, it would have been in very bad taste), but because the offer was given following a tense, potentially violent moment between the captain and Jayne, followed by what would otherwise have been a commercial break (thank you, Netflix). It also served to highlight a moral difference between Jayne and Captain Mal, which relatively made Captain Mal look like a high angel.

I’m not entirely familiar with Joss Whedon’s work outside of The Avengers, truth be told. But I was left wondering how often he flirts with disaster. Done well, it makes for great fiction. But passion can be as blinding as anger if not guided. Based on his interview with the NY Times involving a cut scene involving Captain America and healthcare, it seems Whedon has the gift of discipline and moderation, knowing exactly when and where to draw the line.

Speaking of which, my thoughts turn to another show and drawing a line. Homeland. Currently, work is underway for season 4, but just about anyone who has seen the last three seasons knows that they’re at a great stopping point. Almost all the story threads have been closed and season 4 would have to be a reboot of the series under the same name and same characters/actors.

When I look at Homeland, I feel as though there was no forward thinking beyond season 3. There weren’t many new characters introduced, and no threat beyond Tehran. At this point, we’re getting a whole new show with the same name and likely the same characters.

When they wrote it, did they worry that they might be cancelled this season? Quite possibly. United States of Tara received several nominations and rewards and was well loved by critics before ultimately being cancelled.

Odds are against Homeland being good after this season. We’ll see.

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