Will iconic images recorded in the grooves of an ancient vase unite the Holy Land or rip it further apart?

THE VASE

A novel by Mark M. DeRobertis

Muhsin Muhabi is a Palestinian potter, descended from a long line of potters. His business is run from the same shop owned by his ancestors since the day his forebears moved to Nazareth. The region's conflict saw the death of his oldest son, and rogue terrorists are in the process of recruiting his youngest in their plot to assassinate the Pope and Israeli prime minister.

Professor Hiram Weiss is an art historian at Nazareth’s Bethel University. He is also a Shin Bet operative on special assignment. With the help of fellow agent, Captain Benny Mathias, he plans to destroy the gang responsible for the death of his wife and only child. He puts a bomb in the ancient vase he takes on loan from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.

Mary Levin, the charming assistant to the director of Shin Bet, has lost a husband and most of her extended family to recurring wars and never-ending terrorism. She dedicates her life to the preservation of Israel, but to whom will she dedicate her heart - the brilliant professor from Bethel University - or the gallant captain who now leads Kidon?

Harvey Holmes, the Sherlock of Haunted Houses, is a Hollywood TV host whose reality show just flopped. When a Lebanese restaurant owner requests his ghost-hunting services, he believes the opportunity will resurrect his career. All he has to do is exorcise the ghosts that are haunting the restaurant. It happens to be located right across the street from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.



Monday, April 18, 2016

Banshee Falls from Grace

Watching this fourth and final season of Banshee has been a total disappointment. Total. I had said before that Banshee, after its first three seasons, had replaced Star Trek, tos, as my all time favorite TV show. The fourth season began on the wrong note, as I had said, but I was willing to see how it panned out. I've just watched the third episode, and it's not looking good.

First of all, the premiere episode of season four began with one of my favorite characters, Rebecca Bowman, already dead, slain by an apparent serial killer who had already killed two other girls, using the same disgusting MO. And we had to deal with the main character, Sheriff Lucas Hood no longer being the sheriff. He had slinked away, living like a mountain man, resembling Grisly Adams, with a full scruffy beard, long unkempt hair, and the works.

The story has it that he's feeling sorry for himself, blaming himself for his friend's kidnapping. Oh, he's so sorry that he gave up trying to find him. But it gets worse. Now, in episode three, Lucas is arrested for the murder of Rebecca Bowman. It's all bull crap writing. Shockingly bull crap writing. I mean, they changed everything I liked about the show.

To put this in perspective, it's as if Star Trek, tos, had a fourth season, (which it didn't,) but if it did, Captain James T. Kirk was no longer the captain of the Enterprise, wasn't even in Star Fleet anymore, was not a hero anymore, because he was living on some obscure planet all by himself, looking like Grisly Adams, and Lt. Uhura was murdered by a serial killer, and her dead body was dumped on some obscure planet naked and gutted like a fish. Meanwhile, Mr. Spock has been kidnapped by the Klingons, is being tortured, and no one but Nurse Chapel is trying to find out how to get him back. Scotty is the new captain of the Enterprise, and to top it all off, James Kirk is arrested for the murder of Lt. Uhura, as if no one could realize that, hey, um, serial murders are not something James Kirk would do. Yeah, see what I mean? It's total and complete Bull Crap.

No. No. No. Banshee has fallen from grace, and worse than that, it's fallen into the shit can. I've been dealing with my favorite shows doing things wrong with the writing, but usually, like Arrow, they somehow recover. I don't know how Banshee can recover from all this crap. I think it's impossible. Even if it does pull out of the shit can, it will still have that lingering shit smell on it. Which is too bad. I had liked it so much. But alas, Star Trek, tos, has now resumed its place, for me anyway, as my all time favorite TV show. Kudos to Star Trek, tos. Number one, now and forever.

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