Archive for Child’s Play

FATAL FEMMES: Tiffany Valentine-Ray; A Modern Day Mary Shelley

Posted in Fatal Femmes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 25, 2015 by theladycateye

My mother always said love was supposed set you free. But that’s not true, Chucky. I’ve been a prisoner of my love for you for a very long time. Now it’s payback time. 

Tiffany, Bride of Chucky

She’s a lover, a bride, a mother, a serial killer (with great instincts I might add!), a homemaker, and an improv artist. She traditional, she’s trendy, she’s stylistic, she’s sadistic, she’s sweet…until you cross her. Then you’re dead.

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Tiffany Valentine-Ray is portrayed by no other than the lovely human being, actress, & world famous poker player, Ms. Jennifer Tilly, and created by the talented and wonderful writer, director, producer, Don Mancini. She is one of the few female serial killer/slashers in existence in the horror genre. She may be the *Bride* of Chucky; but this fatal femme stands pretty grounded on her own two feet.

From gathering Chucky’s dollish remains, to channeling Martha Stewart, to helping her hot headed husband with his homicidal/human poaching shenanigans, Tiffany has proven to be both a boon and a kindred spirit to Chucky.

It’s no doubt Tiffany is a catalyst for Chucky’s evolution spanning all six films; pieces of his background and personality we didn’t know existed about human Charles Lee Ray were revealed to us through his interactions with her throughout Bride of Chucky, and it’s sequel, Seed of Chucky.

But this dame isn’t to be underestimated, nor tampered with.

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….Seriously, don’t tamper with her or you’ll die.

Just ask this guy…..

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He was a collaborated kill, but that’s not the point! Don’t. Tamper. With. Tiffany.

She seems sweet on the outside, but inside, a darker core takes shape.

She takes pleasure in murdering people; just like Chucky. It’s one commonality they both share, and one that binds them together: The joy they take in killing people gives the both of them an energetic rush. …And more. Just watch Seed of Chucky; specifically this scene where they’re murdering Tony Gardner’s character and you’ll know exactly what I mean.

…I mean…come on…they’re serial killers…so that’s pretty much a given.

Tiffany herself is like a modern day Mary Shelley.

When Tiffany wants something she goes after it; full force with a vision and a plan…and God help the person that gets in her way and lives to tell the tale. …Because I’m guessing not many have.

But I’m pretty sure that if someone did live through an attempt by her on their life what a fascinating story that would be.

We see this Mary Shelleyesque aspect of Tiffany in Bride of Chucky with her pulling strings in order to recover Chucky’s doll remains, left over by the events of Child’s Play 3 at the beginning of Bride of Chucky. We see it even more prominent in Seed of Chucky with Tiffany basically running the show; coming up with the idea of Chucky impregnating Jennifer Tilly, and then Tiffany transferring her soul into Jennifer after the birth, as well as assigning bodies for Chucky and Glen(da).

Starting with piecing together her beloved Chucky; she tries (in what she thinks is in vain) to resurrect her deadly boyfriend. She succeeds; but not without consequences. Her beloved monster takes her and brings her down to his level. Literally. Since becoming a doll–and later succeeding at becoming human again in the form of Jennifer Tilly– she’s been very clever in pulling together her resources.

Tiffany’s all “You son of a bitch! You made me a brunette!” But not before flailing her head dramatically. 😉

These things don’t come with warning labels, ya know?

In a way, she’s served as both a version of Dr. Frankenstein and the Bride of the monster, Frankenstein

Tiffany takes great care in making sure things are taken care of.

There is no doubt in my mind that Tiffany worked very heavily behind the scenes in Curse of Chucky to help him achieve the goal of taking out the Pierce family. I’m sure the fictional Jennifer Tilly’s fortune has helped speed that process along as well. We know she had a hand in shipping him to various locations; yet I’m sure she also had a hand in putting on his ‘freshly non-stitched’ face.

Since coming into the picture in Bride of Chucky, Tiffany’s brought structure to her and Chucky’s lives; and murderous escapades. She makes sure Chucky’s not all over the place or ‘out of it,’ as he states in Bride of Chucky. We find that he works quite well with Tiffany as a team.

In turn, Chucky has become more humanized over the course of the series. He’s still the monster we’re intrigued by, but with more layers revealed and added to his persona. Chucky has become invested in the lives of his family; being wife/lover, Tiffany, and children, Glen & Glenda over the course and evolution of the last three films. I have no doubt in my mind that his relationship with Tiffany ignited these feelings, starting in Bride of Chucky.

Like Paul Dini & Bruce Timm introduced a new side of the Joker in Batman: The Animated Series by putting him in a relationship with Harley Quinn; the same can be said for  introducing Tiffany into Chucky’s life.

Romantic relationships, no matter what form they take, have a way of revealing layers of a characters core personality. It’s even more interesting when we take a character we know to be evil, cruel, & monstrous and put them in a relationship. We get to see how they navigate the waters of dealing with relating to another person they may care about on some level; even if it appears they don’t.

When I was taking screenwriting classes in NYC with the Gotham Writers Group, I had an instructor lecture us about character relationships and how they move a story forward. My instructor, Doug Katz mentioned to us that–just like in life–every character relationship is a give and take, give and take, etc. “I do for you. You do for me. I do for you. You do for me,” he would tell us, like a mantra to always keep in mind when writing characters in relationships.

In Bride of Chucky, what does Tiffany desire out of Chucky, having invested herself in their relationship? She wants him to ask her to marry him, of course. Over the course of the film, he eventually gives her what she wants: He marries her. She does her best to be the best wife she can be in the brief amount of time they have together. Does he reciprocate much throughout the film? Not really…When Chucky tells Tiffany to do the dishes; instead of offering to do them himself Tiffany’s temper is triggered in a huge way, resulting in her throwing dishes at him. Besides marrying Tiffany in Bride of Chucky, one could argue that Chucky does something for Tiffany by taking care of the details of how they were going to attempt to achieve the goal of attaining human bodies to live semi-normal lives. In a way, Chucky served as a compass for Tiffany, who was a first time doll in Bride; unlike Chucky, who’s had more experience as a plastic fiend throughout the ten years they were apart from one another. He knows this ain’t his first rodeo, and has built the confidence to navigate and adapt to the art of doll life.

Not much of a house husband; that Chucky…is he?

On the other hand; in Seed of Chucky, while Tiffany smooths out the details of how they’re going to become human and live their lives, one can argue that Chucky steps up to the plate and does something for Tiffany, and that’s help raise their gender confused son/daughter, Glen(da).

Chucky and Tiffany give and take in their own way. Even after they fell out of marriage in Seed of Chucky, Tiffany still helps Chucky out of her love for him throughout Curse of Chucky. Whether Chucky gives her credit or not…well…that remains to be further explored as the series continues.

Tiffany is more than capable of standing on her own; stepping up and acting as care taker with raising her and Chucky’s twin offspring, Glen and Glenda and helping Chucky achieve his horrible acts in various ways behind the scenes and in front.

It’s their love and connection for one another (in their own twisted way) that potentially keeps them in each others orbits.

One of Tiffany’s best qualities is her ability to take initiative.

She’s learned not to wait around for others to tell her what to do, but to get things done on her own terms. What form this quality of hers takes in future films will be interesting to see as each film unravels.

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Posted in Raving Retrospective Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 16, 2015 by theladycateye

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Disclaimer: All pictures (banner included) are property and copyright of http://younglikeusseries.com/, Cleo Handler, & Chloe Sarbib.

“As soon as I choose to be anywhere, I wanna be anywhere else. It’s easy for me to love anyone, I love anyone but myself. Just don’t make me love myself.” -Love Myself song by Cleo Handler, Chloe Sarbib, and crew of Young Like Us.

Young Like Us is an 8 episode webseries created by Chloe Sarbib & Cleo Handler (who also stars as one of the three main characters, Mia.)

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Mia (Cleo Handler), Charlie (Julie Shain), & Ava (Sarah Rosen) are three former roommates and close friends who form a faux band called Larry’s Girls to keep from drifting apart in the midst of their busy & ever changing lives.

I had a lot of fun binge watching Young Like Us. Having recently moved back to Anchorage, Alaska from Queens, New York City, this series had a lot of fun references and relatable moments for me.

Living in the big city–-that is New York City-–isn’t easy for many, especially if you’re young and looking to start building a life. So, keeping yourself surrounded by close and supportive friends makes that transition a lot easier and meaningful, especially in a huge city that feels easily isolating.

Mia, Charlie, & Ava are all in a transitional phase of their lives. They’re in their early 20s, out of college, and adjusting to the quote on quote ‘real world,’ that is the 9-5 workforce life.

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Each episode is ripe with issues that any young person deals with; discussions ranging from issues like pregnancy, to dating someone of the same sex, to arguing about who is and who isn’t taking their side of the friendship seriously; which happens in one of the episodes where Charlie feels like she’s taking the idea of starting a band a lot more seriously than her two best friends.

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(From left to right; Cleo Handler, Brad Dourif, Sarah Rosen, Julie Shain aka Larry & his girls. 😉 )

Brad Dourif (Oscar nominated, veteran actor, who portrays one of my favorite characters, Chucky the killer doll from the Chucky/Child’s Play series) makes two guest appearance as Mia, Charlie, & Ava’s former landlord, Larry. One appearance is in the pilot and the second in episode 8. Right off the bat, Cleo Handler and Chloe Sarbib reference Chucky by having Larry tell the girls that he’s on his way to get his Seed of Chucky poster signed by ‘Jennifer–Fucking–Tilly.’ A perfect reference that pays tribute to Brad Dourif’s work as an actor and Chucky, an iconic character we all know and love. Larry is quirky, mysterious, lovingly awkward, & random. Apparently, he is responsible for creating the thin paper that separates cheese in deli’s. Fascinating!

The soundtrack to this webseries is breath taking with hints of folk, rock & roll, even loungy sounding elements to it. These three gal pals spend much of their time in this webseries coming up with much of the lyrics in a lighthearted, entertaining & fun way while they hang out in Ava’s apartment; not taking themselves too seriously….that is until they are faced with a dilemma in the last episode where, Mia’s boyfriend, Trent (portrayed by Devale Ellis) has lined up a gig for their faux band, Larry’s Girls that they of course aren’t in the least bit prepared for. In the end, they embrace this unpreparedness with having fun & letting loose on stage in front of co-workers, friends, & loved ones, proving that just letting go and embracing the moment can be empowering.

These three close gal pals show us the importance of making and carving out the time to spend with your friends; their interactions prove to us that some of the best moments spent in life are in the company of those we form meaningful bonds and connections with in the long term; especially in our youth.

Life happens. In spite of our hardships, if we have our closest friends there to get through it with, then this just amplifies us to be the best versions of ourselves.

You can download the entire soundtrack & watch all eight episodes through the Young Like Us website, also posted there on their Youtube channel that you can find through their website:

http://younglikeusseries.com/

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(Left to right; producer, Holly Meehl; actor, Sarah Rosen; actor, writer, co-creator, Cleo Handler; actor, Julie Shain; co-creator, writer & director, Chloe Sarbib)