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Buffy The Vampire Slayer Reviews: Pangs

We've had Christmas. We've had Halloween. Now it's the turn of the Thanksgiving special episode to take a seat in Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Pangs is the story in question – fans of both this series and Angel had a teaser of sorts in the concluding moments of the previous Angel episode, The Bachelor Party. Angel's friend, Doyle had one of those mind-cracking visions which paved the way for Buffy to make her first cameo appearance in the spin-off show. So what better opportunity to bring Angel temporarily back to Sunnydale? Pangs appropriately lives up to its name from Angel's point of view. He's doing his usual stalker routine, sussing out the threat to Buffy from behind a convenient bush...

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My Top 10 Album Picks Of 1979

Welcome to a new series of lists in which I select my personal album chart picks of a specific year. Today, it's the 40th anniversary albums of 1979 – arranged in no order but chronological order of release. MANIFESTO by ROXY MUSIC (First entered the charts 24th March 1979) After a hiatus of three and a half years, Roxy Music returned to the album charts with what's my own personal favourite of their LPs. Initially, things didn't look too promising, since the lead single Trash barely cracked the Top 40. Maybe the old-school Roxy fans were none too impressed with the change in musical direction. Trash – a vastly underrated song from the band's catalogue – brilliantly gets with the...

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20 Album Greats: Steely Dan

One of my all-time favourite bands, Steely Dan actually became a case of one of my all-time favourite duos. Steely Dan comprised Donald Fagen and Walter Becker, two talented musicians and wordsmiths who called upon some of the best session musicians in town to craft their own inimitable brand of jazz rock. 1. DIRTY WORK (From CAN'T BUY A THRILL) It's easy to forget that in the early days of Steely Dan there used to be another vocalist. David Palmer was on hand to provide a more conventional turn at the microphone, and his soulful vocals are well suited to this quietly maudlin ode about a chap embroiled in an affair with a married woman. More commercial than your average...

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21st Century Doctor Who Reviews: A Christmas Carol

Socks. Amazing inventions these things. They keep the feet warm in winter. They help to keep in check the unwelcome smell of two-year-old Gorgonzola cheese. They're also the one constant of Christmas. No matter what – even if the entire collection of sock shops in the world simultaneously explode on December 1st, somehow, each and every person will still receive a pair of socks. This is possibly why the prospect of a gaudily-wrapped stocking-shaped Christmas keepsake never really gets the excitement flowing on Christmas Day. After all, it's too predictable and dull, yes? But then don't forget the sentiment behind it. Your granny or auntie or whoever lovingly chose the socks in a shop, lovingly wrapped them up, complete with...

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Buffy The Vampire Slayer Reviews: The Initiative

The Initiative marks a new phase of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Oz has left the building, casting off yet another of the early years remnants. Only Buffy, Xander, Willow and Giles remain – although James Marsters finally graduates to full-time member and reluctant hanger-on of the Scooby Gang. It's also the story where squeaky-clean curtain head Riley starts to fit into the puzzle. Which can only mean that the series reveals what all these mysterious Commandos are all about. With the dawning of a new era, both in this season and of the whole show, it's mysterious that The Initiative episode is a bit flat. I guess that any episode which revolves around a bunch of dull army goons wouldn't...

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