Beirut Goes To Storybrooke

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While watching the newest episode of American TV Show “Once Upon a Time,” which flashbacks to the earlier days of Storybrooke, one of the characters was reading a newspaper in which former US-president Reagan is declaring something regarding the Marines in Beirut.

For those who don’t know, Once Upon a Time is a very creative and interesting show by the creators of LOST, which is one of my favorite TV shows of all time (despite the lackluster finale). It’s about every single fairytale character you could think of and how their stories intertwine as they are taken out of their world and into ours where they live in the town of Storybrooke, without any recollection of their previous lives.

Of course, the plot has definitely thickened and gone much darker since the show’s early days but it’s always interesting how they manage to weave together stories you never thought would have any relation to each other: Snow White and Hook, Little Red Riding Hood and Snow White, Jack (the one with of the beans) with Hook, Rumplestilskin and everyone else, etc….

It also offers a whole new “perspective” to the stories we grew up reading – can you imagine for a second that Snow White may have been the reason her stepmother went bad?

If you’re not watching Once Upon a Time, I highly recommend you start doing so – not because of their irrelevant mention of Beirut which lasts less than 1 second but because the show’s premise is very different from everything else out there.

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Lebanon To Sue TV Series “Homeland”

An episode of the American TV show “Homeland” is titled “Beirut is Back.” No, it’s not the comeback we’d want: that of the city that is slowly but surely getting back on its feet, it is that of terrorism. Supposedly, the events portrayed were centered around Hezbollah and CIA. The main character was in Beirut to kill a Hezbollah agent who worked with Al Qaeda. That’s enough for me to put the entire things in the realms of fiction. But for your regular American Joe, Hezbollah and Al Qaeda are probably working together. They don’t know that the animosity between both groups is unsurmountable.

The entire episode was shot in Haifa. Because the Israeli city apparently can serve as a dummy for ours. Ila ma ba3da Haifa, anyone? The TV show producers didn’t even bother getting their setting to resemble Beirut – they just went with it. Their audience wouldn’t care.

So over the course of an hour, Homeland turned Beirut, Hamra Street basically, into a terrorist city where foreigners are abducted for just being foreigners, where women wear veils to go out on the streets and where it is very unsafe to basically do anything.

Based on all the above, the Lebanese government has decided to file charges against Homeland. Details can be found here.

My opinion regarding this is two-folds.

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The Vampire Diaries – The Sun Also Rises

Those who know me are well aware that The Vampire Diaries is, currently, my favorite TV show – by far. It combines all the elements that I like in a TV show: suspense, twists, shockers and a fantasy storyline.

Say all you want about the whole vampire obsession which spread like wildfire with Twilight, but The Vampire Diaries is not Twilight. Let me put it this way, The Vampire Diaries is so much better than the Twilight books and movies that they are rendered more useless than they already are. They are rendered irrelevant.

I hadn’t blogged before about The Vampire Diaries because I didn’t know what I was supposed to write. After all, you can’t really write a synopsis of the show without giving too much away and you can’t review episodes because they would contain spoilers.

But don’t worry, this is pretty much spoiler free.

The latest episode, aired yesterday, of The Vampire Diaries (titled “The Sun Also Rises”) is one of the most epic TV episodes I have ever watched. It is an episode that doesn’t let down for 45 minutes, constantly escalating an already red-alert level storyline. You are basically taken to adrenaline stratosphere level – and no, I am not exaggerating.

This could have easily served as the season finale. It had everything you could ask for as a conclusion to a TV show season. But it’s such a big episode that the writers probably thought the viewers would be morally scarred if they left the season at that. After “The Sun Also Rises”, we need some form of resolution.

But “The Sun Also Rises” starts setting up the pace for season three. And by the looks of it, it will be even better.

Finally, have you ever watched something and it got so stuck in your head that as you walked around and remembered parts of it, you basically got goosebumps? That was me today as I headed towards an exam and the only thing I could think of was how epic the episode was. And yeah, I basically aced the exam also.