By KAYTLYN BIDDLE
Magic School Bus Rides Again
Netflix is on a roll with its remakes recently and “The Magic School Bus Rides Again” is its newest addition. With two new main characters, a remake of the theme song and a brand new animation style, there is a lot to take in for someone who grew up watching the original show. Although this show is meant for younger kids interested in science and not the nostalgic twenty-somethings that want to feel little again , I can only judge based on how it holds up to what I remember as being the best science show (second only to Bill Nye) that I watched on roll out VCR carts.
Much like Arnold in the first episode of this revival, I felt as though Kate McKinnon’s Ms. Frizzle ruins the perfect balance the original Magic School Bus had. With a more intense personality and willingness to give the answer than the OG Ms. Frizzle ever had McKinnon trades in the sometimes mysterious or aloof sides of Ms. Frizzle and embraces the outgoing and the adventurous sides even more. She definitely feels like the younger sister of the, now, Professor Frizzle. Fiona Frizzle could never replace the OG in the hearts of those who grew up with her, but she can definitely find a place with new viewers and older viewers alike.
One change I appreciated was replacing Phoebe. Phoebe was one of the most annoying characters on the show and I can’t say I really missed her. To phase her out, the viewers are informed that she finally went back to her old school. Her character was replaced by newcomer, Jyoti. She’s loud in a good way, takes charge and is always there to help her friends out of trouble. She doesn’t constantly bring up stuff about her old school, which is always a plus. Jyoti fits right in with the rest of the original characters and brings some more girl power into the mix.
Lastly, I think it is important to remember that for those of you, like me, that are watching this new series in hopes it will rekindle childhood memories will always be upset about one change or another. I was distraught when I realized D.A. was no longer carrying around her trademark book for her research, but rather a tablet. But that is something this show does so well.
It merges the advancements that have been made with the old school feel of the original show. It makes sense for characters to talk or dress a certain way, because that is what the kids who are watching now talk and dress like. Most importantly, it is getting a younger generation interested in the world around them and can help instill a love of science through these new adventures. The show is aptly named because it really does feel like “The Magic School Bus” is riding again.
The Magic School Bus has been on some wild adventures, getting baked into cakes and travelling through bloodstreams, but it’s always in the name of science. In the name of science, I chose to make a Fizzy Frizzle Lemonade to enjoy while watching. The thought of eating something while watching these poor kids get eaten was not very appealing. A fizzy drink is something that I am always up for. Feel free to indulge in your D.A. side and research why this drink fizzes or has that coloring. I encourage it.
The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Recipe
Ms. Frizzle’s Fruity Fizzy Lemonade
Sparkling water OR Club soda
(Or a mixed fruit juice)
Pour 8 oz. of lemonade into large glass
Pour 2 oz. of each of the fruit juices OR 6 oz. of the mixed fruit juice
Add sliced strawberries to glass
Mix in 4 oz. sparkling water
Stir together until completely mixed ( I added ice cubes because my juices were not chilled)
This is not your grandma’s Archie. Those of you familiar with the original comics know that Archie and the gang represent a simpler time when your biggest problem was ‘who is Archie going to be with: Betty or Veronica?’ If you have turned to “Riverdale” hoping for the answer to that age-old question, then you are going to be sorely disappointed. “Riverdale” turns everything you thought you knew about Archie and pals upside down.
The show is darker, edgier and Jughead doesn’t eat nearly as many burgers as he should. With an all-star cast leading the “parent” roles and a batch of newcomers rounding out the teenage cast, “Riverdale” hits that perfect medium of familiar without being predictable. Everything and everyone is fair game in this adaption and it never lets you forget it.
I was skeptical when I first saw the images cropping up of this “edgy” Archie but I was quickly silenced by the first episode. With the first season revolving around the mysterious murder of Jason Blossom, it would have been easy for the show to feel like a Scooby-Doo cartoon with the main Archie characters as amateur detectives, but it stays clear of that.
In fact, the love triangle, the food and the main character are three staples of the comics that the show makes clear it isn’t going to mess with. The Betty-Veronica-Archie angle is touched on and then seemingly ignored in the name of the bigger picture. Pop’s Chock’Lit Shoppe is a main hangout spot, but not for eating. And lastly, the titular character of the comics becomes a background feature. It was the best decision the writers could have made.
Archie is a lovable character, albeit a bit doofy. He is a genuinely good guy and that’s great, but good guys are boring on television. The girls take center stage in this drama, with Betty and Jughead leading the investigation into Jason’s death and Veronica dealing with the drama caused by her corrupt father Hiram Lodge.
Even the female antagonist, who we thought to be a Regina George, turns out to be one of the most compelling and interesting characters on the show. This would be none other than Cheryl Blossom who is known for adoring Archie in the comics and for having a weird obsession with her twin brother, the aforementioned late Jason, in the show. Cheryl Blossom is the reason love/hate relationships with characters are so interesting for the audience. You feel for her loss and struggle in one episode, then are shocked by her manipulations in the next.
You can’t forget the guys though, as KJ Apa’s Archie is shirtless at least once an episode and Cole Sprouse’s Jughead Jones is the best performed character in the show. Newer Archie characters also feature Kevin Keller, who sparked controversy by being a new gay character, and his father Sheriff Keller. There are two circles of drama to follow in “Riverdale,” the teens, as mentioned before, and the parents, who have some of the craziest stuff going on. The parents are played by well-known actors with plenty of experience between them such as Luke Perry, Marisol Nichols and Molly Ringwald. Usually the parental drama is the side-action to the younger group’s antics in teen dramas, but seeing these veterans take on iconic roles from Archie comics and put them through hell is so enjoyable.
If you love CW dramas, then this is the show for you. It has everything a drama fan loves: a murder mystery, love triangles, missing siblings, absent parents and so much angst it makes one wonder if these characters even have time for school or work. The second season comes out this month and the first is already up on Netflix.
Pop’s Chock’Lit Malt
2 cups of Vanilla ice cream
2 tablespoons of Chocolate syrup
⅔ cup of Milk
2 tablespoons of Malted Milk powder
Whipped cream and cherries
In a blender, combine all ingredients.
Blend until smooth
Top with whipped cream and cherries (optional)
Will and Grace: Review
“Will and Grace” has always been self-aware. Whether it was 1998 and it had the only principal gay characters on a successful show, or 2006 when it realized it’s punches had already been pulled, it’s never been afraid of pushing the limits of television. So I think many fans were rightfully worried when it announced its comeback earlier this year. With the mixed note it ended on, the original run did not leave itself open for a revival.
And in a more open and accepting world, how was Will and Grace going to maintain its “woke” status from its initial season?
The former problem was addressed in the opening scene, with the finale of the initial run immediately being ignored. So haters of the last two episodes rejoice, they were all a dream. The latter issue is harder to tackle. I’ll admit that the first episode feels a little flat sometimes. Some of the nods and jokes feel like they come from the parent who picks up a meme from Facebook three months after it was interesting.
But it works with where the characters themselves are. Both the audience and the writers know how much time has passed since the finale. The main four are no longer struggling thirty somethings but lone forty somethings. Once again, the show is self-aware of how dated it is, with Grace herself admitting she knows how old she is.
Despite all that struggle, it still feels like Will and Grace. If you’ve never watched it before, I highly recommend watching the original run first. Some of the callbacks and references won’t make sense if you haven’t invested in the show before. The laughs are still there, however, and it’s still enjoyable to watch.
Will and Grace: Recipe
Jack’s Strawberry Daiq
¼ cup of simple syrup
2 cups of Frozen strawberries
¼ cup of Lime juice
¾ cup of orange juice or other citrus blend juice
2-6 Ice cubes (depending on preferred thickness)
OPTIONAL: Orange slices and fresh strawberries
To make the simple syrup: equal parts sugar and water and mix together. I’ve found it helps to heat the water then mix in the sugar. 2 tablespoons of water to 2 tablespoons of sugar for this recipe
Add all ingredients into blender and blend until smooth
Use orange slice or strawberries for garnish
Note: For 21 and over
You can add 1 and ½ oz of rum (recommended white rum, but preferred choice should work as well)