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The Changeling (1980)
Drama, mystery. and a wonderful ghost story all at the same time that's truly chilling, Peter Medak did a masterful job when he crafted this forever haunting gem...
I love this movie a ton, it's an all time favourite of mine, and for me is easily the best ghost horror movie that's ever been done, it's just of a pure great quality that can't ever be done the same way these days, at least never so incredibly well, not even close. It's approach to the supernatural horror aspect of its story is very restrained and traditional, relying more on slowly building up the story and characters to keep one engaged, and it uses its few genuine jump scare moments wisely and at just the exact right moments that they all feel earned. It's a very subtle kind of horror, one that carefully tantalises the imagination rather than bludgeoning it. And as is often the case, it's the horror that you don't see that proves the most effective. The powerfully emotive music, immersive atmosphere and magnificent lighting and cinematography are all excellent, and I can just get absorbed in the compelling mystery and rich dark ambiance and oppressive mood that the film was going for. This movie truly proves better than most in its genre that having nonstop action and flashy special monster effects doesn't necessarily always have everything to do with a scary picture turning out great. All of the elements of this conservatively constructed film that takes the time to build up its suspense and so carefully plays its hand are in perfect balance, and I don't think anything feels really out of place with it and it all just comes together to make something that's such a brilliant classic. The setting is so spot-on and fantastic, it actually looks like a place that would be haunted. I was so surprised when I found out that it wasn't a real location! Absolutely phenomenal production design, it looked and felt completely real. There are many moments and scenes woven into it that are so very haunting and downright chilling, the mesmerising seance sequence where the medium goes into a trance and begins auto-writing junks cranks up the tension so well until you see that glass fly across the room, the dusty old wheelchair attack which should probably feel vaguely silly but really doesn't, the little girl's recurring nightmare of the dead boy staring up at her who lurks underneath her floorboards, and the spine-chilling baseball that comes tumbling down the stairs is a sight that always makes my flesh creep. And that's something that I love about this movie as well, that even though it's scary it's not a story of monsters or demons, and the ghost isn't an evil one, it's the tormented spirit of a long dead little boy who was cruelly murdered by his own father out of pure greed and who's full tragedy is slowly revealed as the film goes on. And the ending doesn't remotely feel like a positive one, as even though the ghost of Joseph can finally rest in peace with the truth revealed and justice served, the scene feels cold and very saddening as the music box plays it''s mournful tune one last time. And it frightfully feels true to me that peace after death isn't some golden glow of heaven but something altogether different and as distant and forlorn as a scene of burned ashes, with the only thing to signify the event being music that no one would ever hear... I was surprised to read complaints but I love the way that the late great George C. Scott's character shows his fear at the events around him, and that he doesn't freak out and react in a typical horror movie way. He is very stoic but if you watched it right you'd know that the character is supposed to have already gone through a lot in a short amount of time and that he's open to the supernatural. He's shaken, but you see how he's determined to fight through his fear and find the answers to the grim mystery no matter what and maybe bring himself a little peace by the bitter end. He was brilliant, he brought solid sensibility to his every scene and made the whole movie seem more grounded and real. What a great film, it will make you fearful of venturing up the darkened stairs of your own home late at night alone... Thank you very much, take care, and farewell.
Fan of the Dead (2007)
"Ze're going to get you, Barbara!"
This zombie movie location tour is a heartfelt labour of love and a very enjoyable homage to Romero's living dead trilogy. Okay so this young french guy named Nicolas Garreau was a huge George A. Romero fan, so much so that he was willing to cross the channel to attend the 25th anniversary celebration of Dawn of the Dead at the infamous mall as well as visit several other notable sites from the trilogy on a three day trip, and he turned his hand-held camera recordings of the once in a lifetime trip into this travelogue documentary, which I think in its own way sheds a little light into the intense fandom some horror fans hold for their favourite movies, particularly of the great Dawn of the Dead, which has been downright worshipped over the years, and quite rightfully so, as it's a classic seminal horror movie viewing experience and I for one count it as my all-time favourite zombie picture! The 'actors' that Nicolas talks to are just people who had extremely bit non-speaking parts in Dawn as zombies like the nurse and the fellow who gets the top of his head gloriously sheared off by the helicopter blades in one legendary moment of ingenious makeup effects, but nonetheless they seem to have made something out of it over the years through the convention circuit. That's the thing about that movie though, the main stars of it like Ken Foree are awesome and indeed make it work, but all those little zombie moments also all go together with the bigger stuff that make up its very special macabre magic, and they actually are the stars of it as much as the real actors were, right? Hopefully big fans like me will get what I'm driving at! Garreau is a bit of an odd host, his thick french accent making him sound somewhat clipped and unenthusiastic, but he had a quiet kind of eagerness about his journey that's sweet and genuine. Plus he was rather hot on the eyes, so that helped out a bit also! The other reviewer is dead right, you do want to be there, and that's what I love about this and similar horror movie documentary programming involving pop culture explorer types, it has a bit of a feel like you're kind of vicariously sharing in the road trip, and I find it all very charming and engaging. You have no idea what could pop up, and I just find it fascinating seeing the horror movie landmarks as they look today and running the little mental comparison in my head with how they once appeared in the flicks. It would be so cool to stand in those places and feel the atmosphere of a film in that special way. For a fan there would be a certain 'lore' there. My favourite places that Nicolas visits are the small airport from Dawn and the underground vaults that were used as the main location for Day, and which are still claustrophobic and spooky as hell to this day! The best one for me though has gotta be the cemetery from the original Night of the Living dead which looks bizarrely frozen in time, it still eerily has the same layout and the way the sunlight hits the graves and the angle of the hill and it's such a beautiful peaceful place, it and the rural areas that lead up to it appear so unchanged since that movie that it's pretty amazing, and creepy! Part of this doc that I don't enjoy as much is when Ken Foree is parading himself around the mall after dark showing lucky fans the locations that he remembers from the movie. He appeared to be enjoying himself and I'm sure he got his payday but I thought it seemed a bit tacky and demeaning to him. I'd be grateful just to shake a person's hand and share a few words, maybe take a photo and get an autograph! So in the end Nicolas is satisfied with his dream movie location scouting odyssey, and so am I. This is a fun documentary that to me is very much a worthwhile watch every now and then when you're in the right mind to appreciate those classic pictures. Well done Mr. Garreau, au revoir! X
"Man's gotta have family..."
I love this superbly unsettling episode that came late in this very unjustly cancelled show's life, the setting and villains are grimy, and it excellently builds up the mood and tension and has a pretty spectacular finish. I like the way it starts at the end of one story and moves straight into another, with Mickey and Johnny visiting a scuzzy diner en-route home in a rural county and encounter a pair of murderously twisted redneck brothers and soon after are forced to break the cardinal rule and use a cursed antique in order to make it out alive. It's a small yin-yang engraved circular charm that has the power to transfer a person's mind into a freshly-killed victim who then gets resurrected as that person - although as the story reveals it seems to work no matter how desiccated the dead body is, as long as there's a sacrifice involved. Anyway it leads to some interesting role-reversal type acting where people who normally act one way take on a whole other's mannerisms. It's a great idea for a story, I think it'd make for a good horror movie, in fact I think the body-swapping element of this episode was ripped off in one from 2007 called "The Ferryman." I thought the actors playing the psychotic Negley brothers were very menacing and hickish and really seemed like they could be crazy people! The one that was meant to become Johnny and who goes from backward killer to soft-spoken and gentle did a brilliant job of it. I love the scene that shows that the brothers have been killing people and stuffing their bodies to arrange as members of their nightmarish make- believe family in a circle in the attic. It's a great ghastly centrepiece and that part of the story as well as the whole decrepit spooky house and grim tone felt to me like a wonderful homage to the genre-defining classic "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre." The episode even delivers an unexpected creepy monster that leaps out of nowhere when the surviving brother accidentally inhabits the sand-filled mouldy husk of the grandpa he himself murdered years earlier. He ends up being literally hoisted by his own petard and macabrely spills his dry innards in a rather epic scene of swirling dusty madness and death that's worthy of any classic horror movie big finale in my book! Just an excellent episode, a favourite of mine and a definite series highlight. They did a fantastic job putting it together, it feels like a true horror story.
"Penny whistles and moon pies!"
I so love this one a whole lot, if I ever absolutely had to pick just ten firm favourites out of the entire series it would definitely be among them for sure. It's so warm and so wonderfully structured and classic, the way the scenarios play out in a mellow but very rich and engaging pace. I really don't find there to be a flat note in the whole story, it perfectly flows and pays off. Bart's love for the comic book is excellently realised, I think it terrifically captures that magical childhood feeling of when you see something that's very precious to you and you know you've just gotta have it no matter what. I love everything in the story to do with Bart doing everything he can to gather the hundred bucks for the rare issue of Radioactive Man number one that the legendary Comic Book Guy, in his first ever appearance on the show, allows Bart to have at such a bargain because as he says it's "because you remind me of me." I love the whole funny sequence where they're all in the Krusty Burger and Bart's pestering Homer for the money while a guy with a smoke in the background watches. Marge's sweet little story is also very endearing, where she tells of how when she was a little girl she agreed to become her sisters' slave to earn the money to buy herself a toy oven, and it also explains the origin of Patty and Selma's trademark gravelly voices! I think my favourite part of it is when Bart is doing odd jobs for the dotty old cranky lady who tricks him into saying thank you after she rewards his torturous labour with just two quarters! Eventually Bart does get the comic but probably not at all like he wanted, as he's forced to share ownership of it with Millhouse and Martin Prince after they all pool their money together to make up the hundred, which is something that any self-respecting kid would be absolute loathed to do! It all comes to a stormy head later that night during a sleepover at Bart's treehouse where after going a little nuts with comic fever, Bart is forced to choose between saving the comic or Millhouse... Sure know the one that I would have opted for.. The comic is sadly left in tatters and they all learn a valuable lesson in not sharing. Kind of! Such a priceless episode, I still love it very much indeed. You can tell that it was written by people from a generation that knew the value of reading treasured comics when they were kids, and I find that this makes for a heartfelt little tribute to that. A fantastic gem!
Masters of Horror: Jenifer (2005)
Love is always hungry...
This was one of the episodes that I most loved and was blown away by years ago when the series first aired. It's a really sick and disturbing story that I consider to be great horror because it is actually grotesque and horrific. Jenifer is such a genuinely creepy creation - she's f****n' Freddy Kruegar Belial Basket Case creepy in my book! The notion of her itself is scary, the inhuman face and soulless black eyes completely at odd with and yet at the same time somehow complementing the beautiful body, the disarming way she squeals like an impish child and mostly appears to be just a horribly disfigured woman, yet is really some kind of voracious she-beast of animalistic appetites both vicious and sexual that devours the unwary and enslaves a man with twisted desire until he goes out of his mind and tries to kill her, unwittingly bringing about the latest of victims in an endless chain of sex, blood, and death! She's such a bizarre walking contradiction, absolutely disgusting and yet at once weirdly alluring. She's both a beauty and a beast, and the grimy, unsettling tone of the sex scenes does make you feel a bit uncomfortably gross! She seems to be basically mindless except for when she targets the shop owner's son out of jealousy. I love that sequence a lot where she lures the young guy further into the woods without showing him her face until she has him where she wants him. To me that part feels like a little deadly dark fable for a moment, you could imagine her enticing victims the same way throughout the ages. Monsters are always more interesting and frightening when they have an aura of mystery, and I love how you just never quite know if she's a demented freak or if there's something a little more supernatural at work. Carrie Anne Fleming did a great job of bringing that creature to life with just grunting and body language, which really must not have been that easy as she couldn't exactly make expressions under the heavy prosthetics and was wearing a flimsy nightgown most of the time. And Steven Webber really holds it all together and grounds the episode. He's so good at looking beat and broken down. It's so nasty and grungy to think he makes love to that and just can't break the addiction-like hold she has over him even after he's aware of her bloodthirsty true bestial nature when she eats the cat and the poor sweet little inquisitive girl next door. There are some things in it that I do find cheesy, like when they gasp out "Jenifer!" with their dying breath and pass on the mantle as it were, and when Frank's wife first sees Jenifer and screams and gets bitten on the mouth, that whole scene as well as when she rips the cat apart are grisly but so loony and over the top that it comes off as kind of hilarious. I read the original comic and I think Argento did very well in adapting it into a television episode. The comic isn't large and needed some padding to make up an hour length story, and he expanded the story while keeping it basically the same. If you compare them visually there are scenes that are impressively faithful recreations of the comic panels. To me this unrelenting onslaught of terror is a good romp that packs a visceral punch. Looking back this show still has some of the best horror I'd seen in years, and this one was always one of the real standout tales of the series. Jenifer kills it!
The Outer Limits: Breaking Point (2000)
It's one of the highlights of the sixth season.
When they are done well, I love stories that involve time travel and all of the awesome weird paradoxical stuff that comes with it. And although this series did use the theme more than a few times, I always found this episode to be one of the better and more emotionally involving offerings. It's really about the classic concept of fate vs free will, and of how no matter what we do or how hard we may try to prevent tragic events from ever happening, the law of destiny, or balance, or whatever name we human beings try to give it, commands that it happen anyway, in one way or another... The story sees the distractingly gorgeous Rick Roberts as a driven scientist who has sorely neglected his restless wife and marriage over the years in favor of developing technology that could theoretically allow a person to travel back or forward in time. Just as his life's work is nearing its final stages he is fired from his own top secret project because of lack of results, and so he makes the fateful decision to prove that his creation works by dangerously trying it out himself, which luckily for him proves successful and transports him two days into the future, where he is soon shocked to discover that he's wanted for the murder of his wife. Returning home, he finds her dead body and sees a man driving away who, as he turns to look at him, is revealed to be - himself! Terrified at what the very-near future holds for his wife and unsure if it was he or a stranger who shot and killed her, plus also suffering from painful side effects of the unperfected time travel tech that seems to induce in him a dangerous burgeoning mental psychosis, he becomes irrationally determined to keep his wife safe in the present, not ever seeming to take into account that his aggressive behaviour is only serving to push her further away from him, and ever closer to the death that she seems destined to suffer... What I love is the juxtaposition of choice, fate, and the strong atmosphere of inevitability that works to dramatic effect here. I thought Rick Roberts and Laurie Holden were both good in their parts, you got that they'd once had a strong relationship, if one possibly built on him helping him to get through a dark period of depression in her life. He loves her and is even willing to go back to when he first met her and shoot his younger self, thereby erasing his own existence, which unbeknownst to him counts for nothing, and simply leads to a sadder kind of end for her altogether, as he was never there to help her on that night. Laurie Holden is really phenomenal in the heartbreaking closing scene, she has such a deep sadness in her beautiful tear-filled eyes, in my opinion is one of the more tragic endings they ever did. To really save the one he loved the most, all Andrew really had to do was simply let her go. Great episode that's still one of my favourites, engaging story-line, well acted characters, excellent use of an old theme and it has a kicker of an emotional finale that feels well earned. I guess we've just got to make the most of the time we have... Thanks, it's time to deja this vu.
Oh dear, just what the hell did they go and do when they concocted this beauty?! I haven't seen every short ever but I'm pretty sure you'd be hard pressed to find much of anything ever so blatantly and obnoxiously in your face with its outdated depictions of bad stereotypes and attitudes as this lively little short which once played, really can't be ignored until it's over and you can pick your jaw up off the floor! I mean hell, yeesh, the black people are designed in such unlovable rubbery caricature fashions that they barely appear human, their ridiculously-oversized red lips and gloved hands and big feet making them look more like unfunny circus clowns.. I don't know though, I personally enjoy this cartoon a lot for what it is, I find it catchy, hilarious and entertaining, but I don't enjoy it for the slurs against people, I like it for its great swinging rhythm and how once the song begins everything in the short moves and doesn't stop until the end, and I laugh at the big 'ol fat mamas in their bloomers and the little girl with the deep baritone, that kind of thing, I ain't condoning, it's just awfully bawdy and outrageous! So if I'm even permitted to have such an opinion without myself being condemned, no I'm not all up in umbrage and disturbed over this bombastic animation at all. I think the whole notion of cartoon racism has always been vastly overblown. I never saw the short yet where the people of colour were villainous. You only generally ever get people up in arms over these kinds of old cartoons, but what about Speedy Gonzales or Pepe Le Pew? They're hardly sterling representations of their proud heritages either! What nonsense - replace them all with poor white hillbillies and see who'd be throwing the race card around then. Nobody, that's who. Gee I really hope that all of the above doesn't make me sound like some kind of petty ignorant person, I never claimed to be able to express myself as eloquently as other reviewers seem to do so easily, but knowing myself I'm pretty sure I'd feel the same way about this silly and too toonish to be possibly taken seriously short cartoon even if I were a black me.. I've always took people as I've found them and treated them like they have me. All I'm saying is, we're all just assholes in the same toilet that is this planet and the sooner we learn that, the better. Backwards as heck as this is, I honestly think there's a worthwhile short with catchy and amazing music to be enjoyed if you can get by the extreme racial stereotypes, and I enjoyed it as just another bizarre and entertaining archaic animated gem of yesteryear.
Samurai Jack: Jack Tales (2002)
"Knock knock!" "Who's there?" "Banana!!!"
This is one of my utmost favourites of this show, I love good anthologies and this one ain't too bad at all considering they only had a half hour in which to present it. The tales are quick but they're all very well done and varied, going from awesome to atmospheric, colourful and funny, pretty much all the strong points that made Samurai Jack so brilliant. The first story is atmospheric at first but soon turns into comical word nonsense as Jack tries to enlist magical aid from a devious dual-headed worm(that has a colour scheme that's very similar to that of comic book anti-hero Deadpool) that plays word games with him until he outsmarts it/them and is swallowed where he dejectedly realises that he's been tricked and that the worm is just another monster to be slain as he finds himself surrounded by previous elderly victims of the 'magic.' Fun! And although I can't really recognise his voice that much, it's still fantastic that they got the great Tim Curry to do a bit on an episode! He's one of the very best voice actors ever. "The Metal Eaters" is my favourite story, the atmosphere is creepy and phenomenal as Jack sharpens his sword all alone by a campfire in a dark wood at night until he encounters a gypsy 'family' that actually surprise him as they appear out of nowhere, and who are clearly hiding something about themselves that is soon revealed as they attack the Samurai and try to seize and bite his sword, and as Jack injures one of them and sees the robotic visage beneath the skin the scene turns bizarre and darkly hilarious as they all turn on and devour and destroy each other as they see what they really are, leaving nothing but flying bolts and scrap metal behind as well as a very confused Jack who doesn't quite know what to make of the situation! It's really rather macabre in a zany kind of way. The third story is a little more lighthearted and is mostly about the tension as Jack has to stealthily rescue a fairy trapped in an energy orb from a cranky gargoyle with a cockney accent as it slumbers. It's so nail-biting as Jack slowly removes a second orb from around the stony brute's neck, and it's so scary and funny when it opens its eyes while he's doing so for a second, but it's only in that half-asleep way! Jack shows a rather rare thoughtless side to his personality as he noisily clashes the two orbs together and wakes up the gargoyle, and then destroys it before even thinking to ask it about how to free its tiny prisoner. It then seems that Jack and the fairy will be trapped together forever until things end on a poignant magical note as he struggles and then happens to speak the correct words that undo the spell... Excellent wonderful episode, as so many of this stellar series were and remain to this very day. Thanks for all the magical work guys, you made a show that will last forever!
The X Files: Humbug (1995)
"The twin extracted itself..."
Wow, 20 years old! Now how'd the hell that happen.. watching it now it really doesn't feel that old to me. It's still one of my(many) foremost series favourites because it's scary, darkly comical, even a little moving, and just plain twistedly charming and a lot of fun. I'm so glad that Humbug had the honour of being the first episode to try out a more wryly humorous approach to the storytelling, and that the lighter-toned quirkier episodes became a little staple of the show in their own right because the varied tones enriched it all so splendidly. It's so cleverly written the way it turns about what the situation and roles are supposed to be, like in the prologue how it subverts what you think you're seeing and expecting to happen, with the 'hideous monster' being a loving and unfortunate father who is soon brutally set upon by a much more frightening little beast! I love all the interesting and well-rounded witty folks that Mulder and Scully meet in their investigations, and I think that's perhaps what I most enjoy about this one, how they ingratiate themselves into a community of human oddities where they themselves are very much the freaks and how well the stoic agents play off against the classic background of mock cheerful carny ambiance and funfair grotesquerie. Did you ever seriously see a carnival in any movie ever that was not creepy? I always loved that horror archetype of the circus that's rendered deadly and creepy in some way, it's such a great horror sub-genre, as is the killer conjoined twin trope, of which this is an excellent addition. I definitely detect echoes of the 1982 Frank Hennenlotter movie Basket Case, in how one brother is normal-looking and the other is an enraged small but deadly twisted abomination, of course the monster here seems to be fairly mindless and is unintentionally killing people as it tears into their stomachs in its attempts to find a compatible host to live inside as a foetus-like parasite, something it is forced to do because its natural host, its brother, is a dying alcoholic. I love the way they're careful to only show "leonard" for only split seconds, it always works that way, if you show your monster too much you naturally risk it becoming something that's silly and un-scary. Terrifically fun climactic scene with Mulder and Scully chasing the demonic-looking thing into a fun house hall of mirrors, but the final scene is even better with the agents failing to capture the bad 'guy' and being left in the dust and quite puzzled over a strange conclusion to a very strange mystery... I always took it that the tattooed guy successfully bonded with the creature rather than eating it, which seemed daft and over the top even for this kind of story! It's such a vague and enigmatic yet thoughtful and satisfying ending, such profound words about nature abhorring unchanging perfection and normality, and that some mysteries are better left unresolved, which is so damn right, sometimes people are more than happy to believe in the magic of the illusion even if they know it to be fake if given the chance, like with the rich legend of the Fiji Mermaid, and chaos will always overcome order, it is the way of things... I love the offbeat atmosphere and how it gets into themes of how normal may be something that isn't always so desirable, and when they say what the original definition of the word "geek" was and bring up old legends like poor Chang and Eng. And the tone is very casual and even normal in a weird kind of way. The moral seems to be that variety is the spice of life and that 'freaks' are just people too. I must give a mention to the wonderful performance of Vincent Schiavelli as Lanny the normal sibling. He gives a lot of feeling and soul to his small part in a scene where he weeps and moans over why he believes his brother has abandoned him. It's something else special that this sadly lost great character actor leaves behind, rest in peace you sweet class act! Still a brilliant gem and a real classic of the series.
ReBoot: Daemon Rising (2001)
Okay so this "Daemon Rising" story arc was originally some kind of animated TV movie, but it also counts as half of a bonus eight episode series that sadly never got to be twelve, so I get to talk about it episode by episode. The last episode of season 3 concluded things so completely and gave the show such a happy ending, and for a while that's all there was, until the writers decided to bring Reboot back for this new adventure which sees war and danger reach Mainframe once again as it comes under assault by the corrupted guardian forces of the super-virus Daemon, and who come bearing the almighty Word of their goddess-like master and who are instructed to open up the closed system to the net so it can be swarmed and easily conquered by the vast armies at her command, as well as to capture Bob, who is the last remaining pure guardian, and who's special abilities will make him a powerful tool with which to spread her dictatorship gospel of 'unity' throughout the entire net... Despite everyone's best efforts they do successfully force open a tear into Mainframe and a huge armada of the enemy ships rush in and attack. The attempts of the CPUs to defend their home are rather annoyingly hampered by Bob's peacekeeping nature and deep opposition to destroying his fellow guardians, even though the situation is clearly way beyond that.. Bob is left very weakened by the energies he expends and the still scary but no longer hazardously insane Hexadecimal shows up and helps him out, first by bringing him back from the enemy's clutches with a snap of her fingers after he is beamed away, replacing him with Mike the TV as a possible joke against Daemon, and then saving the whole system by using her fearsome powers to hurl the entire fleet of corrupted airships back through the tear with little effort, with Mouse sealing the rift behind them with another firewall. Oh my word does it ever make Hexadecimal come off as a different character when she has a moving face rather than her swapping fixed masked expressions behind her hands like she has for so long. Fact is, she isn't quite the same character without the masks or the madness. Her being allied with the good guys does feel right though because she was never a truly evil virus, just a very wicked and naughty one who occasionally got carried away with her love of chaotic dangerous fun. She's certainly a lot more shameless about her feelings for Bob now, regardless of his relationship with Dot! The body movements and facial expressions on all the characters had really never looked better by this point, you can really see the improvements in the animation due to the long hiatus between episodes. That's quite the flashback prologue at the beginning that shows the destruction of Lost Angles, which was annihilated when its core blew up, and that was why the twin city wasn't recreated when the system rebooted, it couldn't without a core. It's weird seeing a snarky teenage version of Dot, who was strangely very 80's! I like Daemon as an antagonist, she's very different in that she's not a malevolent or destructive virus like Megabyte or Hexadecimal used to be, but rather angelic and gentle, being compassionate and benevolent to the point of being a saint. You could hardly call her a villain at all if she didn't force all in her path to submit to her Word, as well as what her ultimate purpose as a virus is eventually revealed to be, and which I won't be revealing here! Some really hate the whole French mademoiselle thing, eh but who cares? Megabyte has a thick stately accent, and Hexadecimal has the voice of a dirty old woman! I don't get her gigantic home base, I think it's supposed to be a kind of inter-system hub at the centre of the net or something. It's a very beautifully-designed place, very cathedral-like. And the religious angle to the villain and the story arc is something that makes it different and interesting I think. It's also interesting to see Matrix interacting with and being annoyed by his younger self in the stupid Austin Powers game which doesn't even remotely fit into the world of the show. Matrix is really only being annoyed with himself when he snaps at "Little Enzo" to get out of the way, because although a copy, he's still Matrix as a kid as he knows everything he did at that age. At the end the new threat is temporarily held back, but Hexadecimal won't be able to help out a second time because her recently-acquired CPU icon goes haywire and begins to physically engulf her as she is engulfed by the legion of nulls that react to her every mood - but it sure ain't Nullzilla coming back for round two, as when Megabyte's former pet null Nibbles joins the heap it begins talking to Dot in a dumb-sounding warbly voice that calls her daughter!?!! Not a favourite of mine but a good episode and an interesting first step in a new direction for a very great series.