questus reviewus #3, Russian doll Julia B

The first few episodes of the Netflix Original show, Russian Doll, definitely caught my attention. The excitement of the partying scenes, the thrill of life, the unexpected outcomes of minor decisions and carelessness. Within the first few minutes of watching this show, I got the idea that Nadia was not a very put together or type-A person. In fact, I was surprised to find out that she was successful in her life and worked as a leading software developer for a huge video game company.


As the show gets deeper, there are many themes and symbols that begin to take hold. The ideas of parallelism and mirroring are very apparent throughout the entire season of the show. To begin, the other main character of the show, Allan, parallels Nadia in a lot of ways. Not only is he stuck in this looping narrative with Nadia, but when they find each other, a lot falls into place. One thing that particularly stuck out to me was the fact that Nadia is a video game developer who had never played her game, and Allan was a gamer that played Nadia’s game a lot. This gave me the idea from early on, that they would learn a lot from each other. I thought that the relations of their characters was interesting and introspective due to the way they find each other and figure out how to be better people.


The main characters also have relationships with people around them in foiling ways. Since Allan is an overly careful, maybe even OCD type-A personality, it makes it hard for others to maintain relationships with him, since he always feels the need to be in control. On the other hand, Nadia is maybe too careless and seems to find herself unable to commit to true relationships for fear of following in her mother’s footsteps. They both do have very close friendships who seem to be supportive of them in their times of need, but for the most part, they are both running away from something, which reflects heavily in their romantic relations. I think these are both aspects that a lot of individuals can relate to, which makes the show easier to connect to. Personally, I feel as though I share similar characteristics and issues in maintaining relationships, so I mindlessly kept watching till someone told me how to fix my own issues. Of course that didn’t happen and I didn’t fully expect that, but seeing people overcome what seems like fate is especially empowering.

The main idea of bettering themselves falls together once they realize that they have terrible coping mechanisms. I thought the show was very visually pleasing and enjoyed it for the most part, but the first few episodes were very repetitive and a little bit boring for my tastes. I would recommend this show to any netflix fanatic, or anyone really. Russian Doll is, simply put, and unraveling of self, promoting the expansion of moralistic intentions.


questus libris Julia Brazer

I acquired texts many different ways. The first few readings of Stallybrass, Johns, Eisenstein, Poe, and Haye’s, I had read off of my classes website that my professor provided online. I accessed Pierre; Or, the Ambiguities by an online format provided to me through my professors webpage as well. Reading the online version of this book was a tad bit strenuous due to the many pages and small text. The next text’s that were required for this course included two short videos called “The Eagleman Stag,” “Snooze Time,” and “Cargo.” I accessed these three videos via youtube and vimeo, which were links all provided as well on the class site, but there were all also accessible through a google search. Listening to The Night Circus, there were many options. I chose to listen to this audiobook on youtube. The audio clips are separated into multiple youtube videos and took about 20 hours to complete, although it took me about 14 because I had listened to it at an increased speed. The two television shows that were assigned, The OA and Russian Doll, were available for streaming on Netflix. The Movie of Stranger Than Fiction, was played in class and the screenplay required to accompany this text I got to through googling the title and reading it online. The podcast that we listened to “S-Town,” I listened to on Audible. Although I had not started the last assignment, I will access it through a online gaming website called “Steam.”

#questuslibris #Netflix #Steam #youtube

Julia Brazer “The OA” review

Julia Brazer

Review on “The OA”


To start, I have watched this show three times. The first time was in High School, when it was first released. I was confused and skeptical and blown away and enchanted all at once. The second time I watched “The OA”, it was about a year later with a few of my friends. We sat for an entire Saturday and watched every single minute of the show in amazement. While they were feeling the same way as I had when I first saw the show, I was in deep analysis of every single moment. While I do not remember exactly what I was thinking at the time, I could just remember how brilliant I thought the writers and producers were for putting something so masterfully together, while leaving so much ambiguity and suspicion. For my third watching of this incredible Netflix original, I was assigned to watch it for an english class. During this viewing I was more keen to pay attention to the more literary devices of the show. Since the original manuscript was obviously written as a play or a story, every episode is a chapter, giving insight into the sectors of the “play”.


The ideas of prosperity and adaptation are key elements in this series. All of the negative events that Prairie reflects on during her gatherings with the people around the neighborhood, proves her resilient nature as she has basically risen from the dead. In the grand scheme of series, you begin to question if the stories that The OA is telling are fact or fiction. There are a plethora of literary allusions and apparent foreshadowing throughout the show, so you are left wondering what really happened, or if her being imprisoned for 7 years has played tricks on her mind. The main thing that seems to fully support her claims is the fact that she was blind when she disappeared, and then came back and was no longer blind. The OA’s cleverness proved essential during her capture in order to trick Hap into believing she was still blind, so she could spy on him and plan ways to outsmart him in his own house.


Without spoiling too much of the plot, “The OA’s” unique approach to the set up of the show makes it slightly hard to gain interest, but once you force yourself past the first few episodes, you will without a doubt be in for a treat. The shows unexpected twists and absurd plot seems so out of reach from the real world (as it should be since it is characterized as drama/fantasy/mystery), yet firmly grip one’s attention as you just want to know more and more about her goal of the meetings, and how she finally escaped Hap. The ritualistic endeavors that the captives perform allow insight into the spirituality that goes into the hope of the research they are involved in (i.e. dimensional travel, the back markings, dance movements).


Since the second season is airing within the next few weeks, after a long three year stretch, dedicated viewers are expected their questions to be answered further. There remains a lot of questions up in the air, but with no doubt in my mind I would recommend this show to any individual who appreciates a mindf*ck every so often. I give the incredibly captivating imagery and plot get a 5/5 on my end, as I clearly have some sort of obsession with this show and its dark and twisted demeanor.

Tl;dr: Watch the show and you’ll know!


“The Man of the Crowd” Amazon review – Jbraz

Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Man of The Crowd” is a compelling story of a man who believes he has the ability to read people just as he has the ability to read words. In the time period of this short story, there is an increasing popularity of advertisements based on accentuating pop-words. This indication that the majority of the public has the capacity to read, shows an evolution not only of the advertising culture, which would previously contain only pictures to indicate what was being sold or provided, but also the gain in overall education throughout the country.


I thought this piece was cleverly crafted as I saw parallels between print culture and societal obsessions placed throughout. The main character of the story is a man who is clearly sophisticated and educated as he begins his observations of human nature in a scientific way, deducing backgrounds of individuals just through a few seconds of observation. We have all heard the phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover,” and have used this to warn people of making initial judgments of a person based on the way they portray themselves. In this case, the narrator blatantly abandons this motto and makes judgements just as passerbyers do with advertisements.


The narrator becomes perplexed with trying to figure out what’s up with this one dude that he encounters, and decides to stalk him all day and all night, following him everywhere he goes, eventually coming to the conclusion that the man insists on being a part of the crowd, going unnoticed. As the beginning and end of the story both contain the phrase “’Er lasst sich nicht lesen’ – it does not permit itself to be read,” this indicates even though the narrator is obsessed with finding the meaning behind who this man is, just as one would be obsessively reading a novel or a series to figure out an end goal or deeper meaning, he comes to the conclusion that sometimes things are meant to be left mysterious.


I give this story 4 out of 5 stars. The metaphorical parallels that Poe plants throughout the story are incredibly strategic.They keep the reader on his toes, aching to find out who this man in and of the crowd is, and why the narrator is so enamored by him. I highly recommend this piece to all who find interest in the dissection of thought processes. Its ambiguous perspective gives the reader an eye opening experience to the underlying themes of American society.

#judgement #Edgar #Allan #Poe #EdgarAllenPoe #TheManofTheCrowd #ad #advertisement #parallel #noice #4stars