Prometheus (2012) Review

As the first prequel to the beloved Alien franchise Prometheus at the time was exciting and had garnered high expectations from the franchises fan base but was it what we had expected or did we leave theatres disappointed?

The film may catch viewers by surprise as it doesnt just look at the origin of the aliens but at society as a whole. The movie opens to a humanoid figure consuming a substance and disintegrating, we are then introduced to our main characters before the plot starts to unfold.

I really dislike the casting in the movie because in my opinion apart two characters everyone is really forgettable, I couldn’t tell you much about this crew apart from there a geologist, an android called David and the female lead of the film Elizabeth Shaw.

The two characters that were memorable were fantastic, Noomi Rapace is a great actress and gives some really emotional work in this film, this is best seen in a really well directed segment where she is told by David she is pregnant, since she in infertile she realises that there is an alien inside of her and in a panic she quickly uses the ships mechanics to remove it from her stomach before she is killed.

David is the best android the franchise has ever had, All of the movies previous to this had an android and all of them have been portrayed by very good actors and actresses but from a personality point of view I think David is the most relatable and a lot of this is in part due to the portrayal by Michael Fassbender and Davids ability to make his own decisions beyond his programming this is shown later on in the film.

Thankfully compared to Alien 3 the CGI here is really good and I think it works really well and is better than some CGI you see in films today, the alien designs are really cool and have a prehistoric look to them which helps to emphasise that this is an origin story so these creatures have not evolved to the form we know and love.

I like Prometheus a lot as it helps me to appreciate the origins of a franchise I hold very dear to me but I would be lying if I said it wasn’t hard to follow even for people who know the original movies and I think if this was your introduction you may be left confused and not quite understanding what you just watched.

Overall an interesting start to the Alien prequels and one that I would recommend seeing but at least see the original film first to get an idea of the xenomorphs and to compare the complete difference in tone, pacing and story telling between the two movies.

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Revenge of Creature (1955) Review

The Season of Spooks and fear is among us and even though this year due to unforeseen circumstances parties and trick or treating has been cancelled, we can still enjoy some spooky media so please join me for Halloween 2020 !

Revenge of the Creature is the sequel to the much beloved sci fi-horror classic the Creature from the Black Lagoon

Check out my review of the original here

https://ragglefragglereviews.com/2017/10/23/creature-from-the-black-lagoon-1954-review/

The opening of the film really caught me off guard because it used a mixture of the previous films footage as well as new scenes briefly explaining the events of the last film and this ultimately leads up to the creature being captured and put on display in a sea park.

The majority of the film takes place in this sea park and I have mixed feelings about this because while the film is scripted well enough that the simple environment of the aquarium do work well from a story telling narrative it is difficult to not miss the amazing shots from the North Florida Wakulla Springs.

Compared to its predecessor I would argue that this film is more light hearted and sillier but I think it works more in its favour because of this, a great example of this is the scene in the laboratory, it opens to a monkey painting and then eventually the films shows us a goofy moment regarding a missing lab rat from a scientist played by Clint Eastwood, this film was actually his debut role although he isn’t credited as being in the picture.

In this movie we get see the creature on Land much more than we do in water, he’s also more brutal and more animalistic with his mannerisms and the way he kills his victims, It’s hard not feel sorry for him in this movie because all he wants is to get back to the Black Lagoon and apart from trying to take the female lead with him to the water he doesn’t do anything that doesn’t have just cause, he only really kills people when he feels threatened and doesn’t do much harm to others.

There is a great scene film in this film where the creature escapes its captivity and all of a sudden the humans that imprisoned it panic and do not know what to do, in this scene the creature is only trying to leave the sea park but everyone is so terrified of him that he has to fight through their terror to try and get back to the sea so that he can breathe.

The casting is great in this movie and all of the characters are very likable, the three main cast members give the best the performances and give the most screen time, of course the creature is yet again played by Ricou Browning for the underwater scenes and for the land segments Tom Hennesey takes over the role. The two main love interests and scientists in the film are Clete Ferguson and Helen Dobson played John Agar and Lori Nelson.

I really enjoyed this movie and I like it better than the first, the original film is great but its a little slow in places, I like this version because it has silly moments that mix well with the horror, and with creature now having more screen time and some more on land segments his character is more entertaining and overall more memorable, at least this was the case for me and from what I understand a lot of people would disagree with my opinion as the original is often regarded as a much better film, either way there is still one more movie in this trilogy and I’m going to be taking a look at it later on in October so look forward to that.

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Tomb Raider (1996) Review

Tomb Raider is a 1996 3D platformer-puzzle game developed by Core Design and published by Eidos Interactive. It was released for the Sega Saturn, Playstation 1 and MS DOS. The game was the first release in the popular video game series that sees Tomb Raider Lara Croft solving dungeons to discover treasures.

Relaxing in a Hotel in India, Lara is approached by a texan man named Larson who shows her a video feed to his boss Jaqueline Natla who offers her a job to travel to various countries to seek out the Scion of Atlantis which had been split into separate parts and hidden in tombs across Peru, Greece and Egypt.

The first Tomb Raider game while not limited in it’s environments definitely is forgettable, nothing about these areas stand out much apart from the enemies that you would fight, for example Peru has wolves and bears, Greece has lions and gorillas, Egypt has panthers and Atlantis has bleeding skin demons.

In the game you will have to solve puzzles and commit to some tricky platforming in order to survive the many tombs in the game, unfortunately you would be best playing the game on an original PS1 controller as more modern controllers make the platforming difficult as the game really was made with the Playstation’s original limited controller in mind.

while general control is rather clunky and a little stiff I found that swimming in the game worked really well and controlled smoothly, I believe this is why I enjoyed the underwater segments the most.

For an early PS1 game the graphics are really good and even hold up better than some games released later on in the systems life time, the game focuses primarily on tombs and is actually quite realistic as Lara will die constantly due to small mistakes and the tombs feel like they could exist in real life due to their simplicity by using mainly levers, switches and difficult platforming sections, there is nothing in the game that feels fantasy minus a few additions such as the Lara Doppelganger in Atlantis which is a puzzle in its self.

The soundtrack is great, it uses simple tunes but mixed in with orchestral music that fits perfectly into the lonely tombs and helps to amp up serious moments in what is a very quiet game. The developers decided to not have music playing constantly in the game but to only have it appear on certain cues such as discovering a secret or triggering a boss fight.

Tomb Raider on PS1 is a very important game as it was the introduction of Lara Croft who would go on to become one of video games most famous female icons. I wish the game controlled a little better or at least would save after every challenge as the controls really did make the gameplay unnecessarily difficult, I also wish that the environments were more memorable as apart from Atlantis and the dinosaur section nothing else really stands out. Overall I dont think is one of the best games I have ever played but its far from the worst and I look forward to checking out Tomb Raider 2 in the future.

5.3/10

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Book Review: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Goblet of fire is the fourth book in the Harry Potter series, it was released in 2000 and is the first larger book in the series with a page count of 636.

The book follows Harry Potter in his fourth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, this year Harry’s names is slipped into the Goblet of Fire which forces him to compete in the Triwizard tournament, a deadly competition with students competing from various magical schools.

Every year the Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher is replaced, in the Goblet of Fire it is Alastor Moody who is nicknamed Mad Eye Moody. Mad Eye Moody a rather scary looking fellow and a famous Auror has a threatening and serious demeanor about him, by the end of the story you realise that he has a connection with another character from the book and is maybe more menacing than he already seems.

Madma Maxine a temporary love interest for Hagrid is worth mentioning as well as the meddling Reeta Skeeta a writer for the Daily prophet.

There are three tasks to the Tri Wizard tournament and these were best parts of the book for me as they really helped to add more intense moments and changes in the environment from the usual Hogwarts castle. My favourite task was the second task where the Champions had dive into Hogwarts Lake and rescue the person they cared about the most, for Harry it was Ron however Hermione was to be rescued by Durmstrang student Viktor Krum.

The book differs an awful from the film and a lot of changes in the movie completely mess with the lore of the Harry Potter universe, an example of this is the choice that while Beauxbatons school takes in the majority of European Withches and Wizards, in the film it is female only making no sense what so ever. Dumbledores reaction to Harrys name being entered into the Goblet of Fire is completely different in the book as he comes across as more calm and doesn’t get as angry as he does in the film, the final task is a lot more interesting in the book as the film took out many of the creatures, riddles and traps due to time constraints. The film cut out Dobby the house elf and a house elf called Winky who played major roles in the book. Hermione’s sub plot fighting for house elf rights was also cut from the film.

The final major change I feel I should mention is that the Dance lesson in the film was not in the book at all and was a new addition.

What a fantastic read this one was this is easily my favourite Potter book yet but I do wish they adapted it better to film, this is where the series starts to get really serious and is the first book to not end on a happy note, it leaves the reader nervous about whats to come and unsure of if they should be worried or not and I love it because of this, If I had any complaint Ron Weasley is fairly unlikable in this book due to his fallout with Harry, I can understand why hes upset but it comes as childish and slightly annoying.

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Mega Man 11 (2018) Review

Mega Man 11 is an action platformer developed by Capcom as the eleventh installment of the original Mega Man franchise, it was released in 2018 for PC, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Playstation 4.

If before reading this review you would like to see my reviews on the previous 10 Mega Man titles please use the following links to read my reviews of Mega Man Legacy Collection and Mega Man Legacy Collection 2

https://ragglefragglereviews.com/2018/02/24/mega-man-legacy-collection-2015-review/

https://ragglefragglereviews.com/2019/09/16/mega-man-legacy-collection-2-2017-review/

The game opens with a flashback to Dr Wily and Dr Light at Robot University and shows the player the time when they had the famous argument which caused them to become rivals. Due to Wilys Gear System causing strain on robots Lights research was chosen over Wily’s.

At this point Wily wakes up remembering the power of his Gear System he sets to work on taking over the world once again stealing Lights latest robots with the power of the gear system making Wily almost unstoppable. Thankfully Light kept a prototype of Wily’s original gear system allowing him to install it into Mega Man powering him up ready for battle.

The game follows the usual Mega Man pattern of eight challenging platforming levels each with a Robot Master and most with a mini boss. I was surprised that the game did not hold back on its difficulty. There are four different levels of difficulties to pick from but I personally would recommend either casual or normal.

For every Robot Master you successfully defeat you will gain a new weapon that can be used at any time however with limited energy, each robot master is weak to another masters weapon so you need test out different abilities to ensure that you can survive the many challenges of the game.

The Gear System is a new element of gameplay that can temporarily aid Mega Man, players are able to slow down time or increase the Mega Busters Power, I hardly ever used the power gear but the speed was extremely useful for avoiding large oncoming hazards and to make some precise shots on enemies.

Visually I think this is one of the best looking Mega Man games of the classic series, It doesn’t hold a candle to Mega Man 8 but I really enjoyed the small fun details that Capcom put in this one. I love blast mans stage as they designed the background as TV set giving it a lot of charm.

The soundtrack is ok but really isnt anything special, not that its bad or anything its just very forgetful which is shame considering that some of the previous games have given us some of the most influential video music of all time. I love Mega Man music that gets the player pumped for a battle but is still really fun to listen too and Mega Man 11 did not deliver any of this for myself.

Along side the music the game is fully voice acted and the voice work is much better here than it was in Mega Man 8.

Mega Man 11 is a great game I will admit that its not one of my favourites but is a lot of fun none the less. It has some bonus challenges but the only one worth playing in my opinion is the Dr Lights challenge which puts the player through 30 very difficult short levels. The main game is challenging enough but is made a little easy by its very cheap shop which can be visited between levels even on the stages between Wily’s fortress which is a series first, because of this you can keep stocking up on cheaper weapon and energy tanks making the final battle a breeze. A great blast from the past but one that I wish had a more interesting soundtrack and was perhaps not so generous with its item prices and bolt drops.

7.7/10

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Captain Cooks – Smooth and Spiced Rum Review

Sometimes you can only afford a cheaper option when it comes to rum, buying the cheaper rums is sometimes a gamble on it’s quality but was I left surprised by Lidl’s own rum Captain Cooks Original Smooth and Spiced.

The back of the bottle has a small message which is very basic, its reads ” This amber – coloured Captain Cooks Spiced Rum Based Spirit Drink captivates with its mild spices and its incomparable flavour. It provides an excellent base for mixed drinks.”

The Rum is 35 percent alcohol and it comes in a fully recyclable bottle.

The spirit gives of a very strong artificial vanilla smell, it has a slight chemical taste to it but is pleasant enough to be enjoyed as a cheaper alternative to the more expensive premium rums.

Mixed this rum is very good, the artificial chemical flavour is gone and you have a lovely sweet vanilla flavour which works extremely well with a cola but should be just as good with a beverage of your choice. This is far from some of the best rum I have ever had but if I ever am in need of a cheap rum to bring to a party this may be the one that I choose and if you would like to try this rum you can find it in the alcohol isle of your local Lidl.

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Spongebob Squarepants: Creature from the Krusty Krab (2006) Review

Spongebob Squarepants: Creature from the Krusty Krab is a 2006 action game based on the Spongebob Squarepants characters and world, it was released in 2006 for the PS2, Wii and Gamecube, there was also a game of the same title released on the GBA, DS and PC however I am purely discussing the console release here.

Its bedtime in Bikini Bottom and we are taken into the dream world of three fan favourite characters Spongebob, Patrick and Plankton. With the game taking place in dreams all possibilities are open and with a clever twist they may all connect with eachother.

This is no ordinary game in the sense that the narrative is all over the place, there is no goal as such and each set of levels is unique within themselves offering the player a large range of gameplay styles and experiences.

I loved the Patrick sections that focused on beat em up gameplay and 3D platforming, the plankton sections focussed mainly on horror, the second part stood out where players were tasked with destroying bikini bottom using the power of an enlarged Plankton.

The main gameplay style that is shown in the game revolves around vehicles and on rail vehicle stages. These are very boring and not too interesting. I suppose you could argue that this was an early attempt at a Spongebob racing game before Nickelodeon Kart Racers would be released many years later.

The visuals are amazing and I don’t say this from a graphical perspective but from its creativity and how it adapts its visuals to fit perfectly into the natural environment that the dream is based on.

The soundtrack is really nice, it fits the environments and tone of the game perfectly, I love the main menu music, it really gets you excited for the game that’s ahead.

Creature from the Krusty Krab is surprisingly a good game, apart from the racing section the entire experience is a lot of fun and the variety of gameplay styles means that there is always something new to look forward too. There are three endings to the game depending on which character you finish the final level with however you can only unlock these by finding all of the characters coloured collectables in the games story mode. I dont actually recommend doing this as all of the endings are mediocre and lead to the same finale either way.

7.6/10

My Favourite Spongebob Episodes – Band Geeks

How could I do a Spongebob Month without talking about the absolute masterpiece that is Band Geeks.

In the episode Squidward is tormented by his rival Squilliam that he was supposed to have his Band play in the Bubble Bowl and sarcastically asked Squidward to bring his band instead knowing that he doesnt have one.

Squidward agrees taking a risk and trying to put together a band consisting of the Bikini Bottom citizens which unfortunately doesnt work out until the very end of the episode when Spongebob convinves them to really try and do a great job for Squidwards sake.

Many memes and fan favourite moments later we are gifted what I consider to most self aware and greatest ending to any Spongebob episode and a sweet victory for squidward.

And that is the end of our Spongebob month of 2020, I hope you enjoyed all of my reviews this month and I cannot wait to do a Spongebob month again in the future, there are so many more games and media I still need to cover so even though it wont be any time soon I can promise we will revisit Bikini Bottom again in the future.

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The Spongebob Movie – Sponge out of Water (2015) Review

Sponge out of Water is the second Spongebob film that was released in theatres, in brought back the original voice cast and starred Antonio Bandares as a new villain. Stephen Hillenburg returned to write this film as well as future episodes of the television series before his untimely death in 2018.

Similarly to the previous Spongebob film this opens with a live action Pirate sequence but instead of going to see the movie this Pirate played by Antonio Banderes actually plays a major role in the film when he steals the Krabby Patty formula using a magic book.

Because of the Formula disappearing food production at the Krusty Krab is put on hold causing the citizens of Bikini Bottom to go into an apocalyptic meltdown, leaving Spongebob and Plankton to try and save the town and recover the secret formula.

What I really like about this movie is that it showed a different side to Plankton that I feel hasn’t been shown before this. In the movie he and Spongebob are forced to work together to retrieve to formula and while at the beginning his plan is to take the formula for himself throughout the movie he starts to see the benefit of team work and friendship ultimately giving up what he has always desired for the benefit of others.

I really appreciate the the various styles of animation used in the movie but my favourite was during the time travels scenes where the animation got really silly and creative, every time that the machine was used a different idea was used for animation styles so each time there was something new to look forward too.

Another part I really enjoyed was when Plankton climbs into Spongebob’s brain, this highly animated scene shows to the full extent how sweet and innocent Spongebob’s mind is, of course the sweetness is too much for Plankton to handle which ends in a few good laughs.

The third act of the movie focuses on live action animation hybrid which puts CGI versions of the Spongebob characters into the real world above the ocean where they eventually gain super powers to take on the Antonio Banderes pirate.

When I first saw trailers for this movie I was concerned that it was going to use the cliche of characters from an one world come to our world and thats where all the jokes would come from. While this does happen and some jokes are at this expense I was pleased when the main goal of the film remained the focus and the comedy was more clever than easy to write humour to keeps the kids happy.

The entire film does a great job of explaining who the Spongebob characters are along with their personalities and goals so that new comers can understand whats happening without making this come across as a forced narrative.

Sponge out of Water is a really fun movie, there is a lot of different plot points going on which I think a younger audience might struggle to follow but overall its a very funny and entertaining film that is sure to keep the attention of both children and adults and shows that Spongebob is still relevant enough to make a film good enough for a theatrical release.

My favourite Spongebob episodes – F.U.N

Whats a better time than now to talk about the very famous Spongebob episode F.U.N?

After once again having his plans foiled Plankton is sent back to his computer wife Karen utterly defeated. After seeing him so sad Spongebob decides to show Plankton the power of friendship and change his evil ways.

At first Plankton is against the idea of befriending Spongebob but is convinced by his computer wife Karen that it’s the perfect chance for him to learn the formula so he ultimately agrees.

This leads into one of the most famous songs in the shows history where Spongebob tries to teach plankton how to have fun with plankton eventually fooling Spongebob into thinking he has changed.

One of the more silly episodes of the show which has more random moments than clever comedy but I feel it works really well and flows nicely as a simple story. I really love the song F.U.N and I often sing it to myself and have never forgotten the lyrics.

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Spongebob’s Truth or Square (2009) Video Game Review

Spongebob’s Truth or Square is a 2009 action plat-former which shares its name with a TV special that came out previously. The game was released for various video game systems Including the Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, PSP and the Nintendo DS. The DS version was more uniquely made to fit the systems capabilities however minus a few extra stages the PSP version is almost identical to its home-system counterparts.

It’s the Krusty Krabs eleventy seventh Anniversary and Spongebob has lost the Krabby Patty Secret Formula. Plankton offers to use a machine to explore Spongebob’s memories and with a little help from his friends who help him remember his past can Spongebob figure out that happened to the formula?

The In-game hub world takes place during a party at Spongebob’s Pineapple house. I enjoyed this area as it was very interactive allowing players to trigger small animations and upgrade the homes furniture. You are also able to purchase in game character outfits and health upgrades.

The main gameplay is a 3D platformer where the goal is complete a main mission in each stage to find an object from Spongebob’s past. After finishing a stage you can return to find missions allowing you to discover more items.

Discovering sleeping Patricks within each level is not required but can still be done, these are actually fairly challenging to find and can add more game play to what can be considered a very short game.

There are various power-ups in the game that you can find for temporary advances in combat. For me the best powerup was the water propeller which gave Spongebob the ability to shoot water from his body. Sandy, Patrick and Squidward are also available as power-ups to help Spongebob defeat the attacking robots, these were all fine enough but they were not anything special or really that memorable.

There are various giant robots to defeat in the game, these boss fights can be a challenge for younger gamer’s but once you get patterns down they should be defeated with ease.

I played the Nintendo Wii version of the game which was developed by Heavy Iron Studios who also did Battle for Bikini Bottom. The music here is almost entirely recycled from Battle for Bikini Bottom. As it was in that game the music is a ton of fun and suits each area naturally well.

Spongebob’s Truth or Square is not a remarkable game by any means, I will be honest in saying that it is very basic and nothing really stands out. Its a very short game and personally I thought it was extremely easy which made it a little bit boring. I can only really recommend this as a very cheap game and a good choice for very young gamers who have little experience with video games.

4.7/10

My Favourite Spongebob episodes – Pizza Delivery

In this season 1 classic, Squidward and Spongebob are sent to deliver the first ever Krabby Patty Pizza to a hungry customer.

Of course this wouldn’t be a very memorable episode if nothing went wrong in this case it was a losing control of the delivery boat and running out of fuel in the middle of nowhere forcing Spongebob and Squidward to deliver on foot while fighting the urge to eat the cheesy treat.

A much more caring side to Squidward is shown in various scenes where he tries to help Spongebob instead of just focusing on himself. The final scene is very touching and in my opinion really shows the character in a much more positive and sympathetic light than he has been shown in other appearances.

Overall a great episode that packed with laughs and its fair share of emotion.

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Spongebob’s Truth or Square (TV Special) Review.

Created in celebration of the shows 10th anniversary, Spongebob’s Truth or Square was a very special moment in the shows history thanks to its silly premise and many celebrity cameos.

The animated section of the special follows Spongebob and friends during the celebration of the Krusty Krabs Eleventy Seventh anniversary. Due to unfortunate events caused by Spongebob’s decorating, Spongebob, Patrick, Squidward and Mr Krabs end up trapped inside of the freezer where they are able to talk about memories including when Spongebob first moved into Bikini Bottom, where his pineapple came from and when he tried his first Krabby Patty.

My favourite animated section of the show was a homage to classic cartoons from the 1930’s such as the older mickey cartoons and Betty Boop.

The other half of the special focuses on live action, Patchy the Pirate has managed to get himself a spot hosting a Spongebob fan show where he has managed to gather special guests including the Queen of England and the fifth best ventriloquist in the world but the only guest that doesn’t turn up is Spongebob Squarepants which causes Patchy to attempt to find Bikini Bottom and if anyone knows Patchy things never really work out for him and its no different here.

The Robin Williams Cameo was very funny but a little bit upsetting for me personally, I love Robin Williams and it makes me a little sad knowing that he’s passed away and will no longer be able to bless us with his comedic talents.

My favourite part of the whole special has got to be the song “We’ve got Scurvy” sang by Pink.

Spongebob’s Truth or Square is definitely an usual special but its wackiness definitely fits well in the Spongebob universe and while I dont think the animated section is too memorable the many cameos definitely are I didn’t cover all of them here but some honorable mentions are Ricky Gervais, Will Ferrell, Lebron James and Tina Fey. The special is an hour long and if you don’t fancy watching the entire thing I would at least watch clips of the Robin Williams cameo and the song by Pink.

They made a video game with the same title as this special and we will be taking a look at that as my next review for Spongebob month 2020.

My Favourite Spongebob Episodes – Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy 3

In this season 2 episode Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy are going on vacation and leave Spongebob and Patrick to take care of the Mermalair with strict instructions not to touch anything.

Of course they dont listen and end up releasing the Evil Man Ray who tries to attack them before being affected by the tickle belt that is still attached to his waist. This gives Spongebob and Patrick the idea of rehabilitating Man Ray so that he can become a better person, they try this by giving him tasks to act out with Patrick, as usual Patrick is too stupid to fully understand what he’s doing which makes Man Ray very frustrated but great comedy for us viewers.

Thankfully the Spongebob Squarepants official Youtube Channel has uploaded this clip to the internet, I’ve linked it here and I highly recommend you check it out. It’s definitely one of the shows funniest moments.

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