Mr Mansell McTaggart

A while ago now, I was doing my Silver Duke of Edinburgh Practice Expedition. Now this walk took me too many places in my local area, that I did not know existed. I also saw many of these things which amused me greatly.

IMG_1383

Yes, it does seem that someone out there (presumably Mr Mansell McTaggart), has named their Estate Agents Business ‘Mansell McTaggart’. Now don’t get me wrong, I think it’s a great name and, if I were judging on names alone, mansell mcTaggart would get my custom straight away. My only concern is, are you really gonna take someone seriously if they work for someone called Mansell McTaggart?

Infinite Monkey Cage Recording – Series 8 Episode 5

IMG_1429An email popped into my inbox recently, telling me that I had a couple of tickets to a recording of the Infinite Monkey Cage.

For those of you who don’t know, the Infinite Monkey Cage is a BBC Science Podcast, hosted by Brian Cox and Robin Ince. Each week they take an area of science and talk about it with their guest panel. The Podcast, whilst mainly being scientific, has a small bit IMG_1427of humor in it and what better to outline this then a studio audience?

So I arrived a BBC Broadcasting House / BBC Radio Theater, whatever you want to call it and entered the recording hall, where some fancy tables were set up on the stage for the panelists to sit at. Soon the hosts came on and their panel (which consisted of two scientists I’d never heard of and a stupid IMG_1430American Comedian who wasn’t funny). In fact none of the show was funny however surprisingly, me not being a very sciencey guy, it was incredibly interesting.

The theme was Darwin’s Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection. I found myself learning loads that I hadn’t known before.

At the end of the performance, me and my friends hung around outside the staff door to radio theater and were finally blessed with the sight of Brian Cox coming out. I got his autograph!!! That was a lovely day.

The Graphic Art of the Harry Potter Films

Over the last few months, my passion for Harry Potter has been waning a bit. I think this has to be because of the fact that I did over-exploit both the films and books, and by that I mean constantly re-rereading and rewatching. This is sad for me because I am worried that my passion and enthusiasm for the stories will go and leave way to my recent most obsessions such as Cabin Pressure and Lord of the Rings.

However recently something happened that was just enough the restart that Harry Potter spark from within me!

I was searching the Internet for the latest news relating to Harry Potter when a review came up for a small exhibition going on in London and it just so happened I would be in London, in that very area on the week it was open.

IMG_1425

‘The Graphic Art of the Harry Potter Films’ was a collection of graphic props from the Harry Potter films. These included Posters, Magazine Covers and Potion Boxes. Although small (the gallery was only two rooms big), this was an excellent place to see some new designs I hadn’t seen before and some closer up (which I had seen in DVD extras and other stuff like that). Although nothing like the ‘Harry Potter Studio Tours’, this was a great place to see some of the film’s unseen but great graphic work.

Here are some of the great pieces which were on display.

CIMG9730CIMG9734IMG_1420

A very good display and I would recommend it to anyone who has the ability to go back in time to visit such things.

Skins Fire Part 1 Review

On Monday Night, the award-winning Channel 4 Drama ‘Skins’ returned for the first episode of its concluding Series. The final series focuses on three members of the previous cast as they begin their lives as working adults.

The first episode; Skins Fire Part 1, saw the return of Kaya Scodelario playing the part of Effy Stonem. Effy who appeared in the first 4 series, is now working as a receptionist in a leading London Hedge Fund. This episode also saw the return of Lily Loveless as Naomi who is Effy’s flatmate.

Skins-2013107

Effy, who has now moved to central London with her friend Naomi, is in a dead end job. You know the sort, getting coffee for a bunch of office workers who don’t give a crap about you, photocopying sheets of paper for a whole building full of stockbrokers and staying up all night writing a report for a boss who doesn’t care enough to learn your name. However, Effy’s life takes an unexpected shift when she leads a meeting with one of the hedge Fund’s clients. Although unruly, this move shifted Effy up the ranks where she began to work as a trader. Seemingly a very good trader, making the firm over a million pounds in one day using leaked information from Dominic, a research annalist working nearby.

Throughout the episode we also see how Effy and Naomi’s relationship develops, how Naomi follows her quest to become a stand-up comedian and how she learns she has developed Cancer.

TSmaqr01C2gYqlGebvsH21This episode also has a line of brilliant guest stars. Kayvan Novak and Lara Pulver star as Effy’s bosses whilst Tracy Beaker’s Craig Roberts pops up as Dominic, the tragic but lovable research analysist.

This episode has received negative reviews on the likes on Twitter and Tumblr, however I would rate it quite highly. It has definitely matured and gone from a teen comedy to a proper adult drama. The storyline is excellent, if a little predictable at times and it has made me eager to see what will come next week. However the one thing I didn’t really like was the characterisation of Naomi. In this episode I think she has been portrayed too much like a drunk hermit which I don’t really think is unlocking Lily Loveless’ true acting potential.

All in all a very good episode and a great start to a new series. I can’t wait to see what is coming next week.