PHP # 3: Reacher Review, Vince McMahon Insanity and more


In this conversation, Ryan and Justin discuss their recent experiences in Key West, their recommendations for movies and documentaries, and the scandal surrounding Vince McMahon. They also talk about a miscommunication regarding the Reacher books and share their thoughts on the TV show adaptation. They compare Season 1 and Season 2 of the show, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of each season. The second part of the conversation focuses on the disappointments and flaws of the second season of the show. The main themes include the disappointing villains and lazy writing, the importance of having fun with a show, glaring inconsistencies and lazy writing, the lack of motivation for the head villain, the chemistry between Reacher and the police officer, the disappointing ending, unestablished character and loose ends, and the disappointment in fight scenes. The hosts give their final thoughts and ratings for the season.

00:00 Introduction and Justin  Busking and reckless driving Key West
04:44 What we’re watching
12:12 Discussion on NFL Rigging Playoffs and Taylor Swift
14:08 Discussion on Vince McMahon Scandal
24:53 Reacher Season 2 Review

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Ryan George (00:29)
Welcome to the portable whole podcast. I’m Ryan George and I’m here with Justin. He is back in studio and of course, cynic is out this week. So you guys miss each other for a second straight week. But Justin, you, you had an interesting week off. I saw that you were busking and you also, also some reckless driving. So why don’t you tell me about that? Um, Oh, all right. So we’ll start, start with the busking. I’ve never been much of a busker. Um, but I was with my friend down in Key West. He was like, let’s go busk. I have a license.

So, uh, we went and, um, wait, you need a license to busk. You need a license to busk. And in fact, you need a license to busk in a lot of places. Yeah. Legal. Wow. I didn’t know that. Okay. Okay. So we’re there. We’re busking. Yeah. It went well. Um, I learned a little bit about it. Like really you need a shill to come up to you and make requests, right? Because it’s, it’s tough. Like there’s people and they’re sitting along and they walk and some people give you money, but things didn’t open up until some guy, um,

was he from? He might be from Argentina. It came up to me and was like, can you guys play Sweet Home Alabama? I was like, sure we can. And then it sort of uplifted the whole thing. And it was fun because tourists and foreigners appreciate that. So it was fun. But code enforcement came up to us. The guy was really nice for a couple reasons. First off, we were using amplification, which we’re not supposed to do. And my buddy didn’t know that.

So it’s like you’re not allowed to do that. And he’s also said it wasn’t both of you was just, you know, both of you busking and my friend Bill is like, no, just me because he’s the one with the license. Other thing we didn’t know. Oh, well, we’ll have to have licenses. And we think that it was another busker who who called enforcement on us. Wow. The guys sort of implied that, although there’s no way he would know. But that’s he said a lot of times other buskers will will will call us.

If you’re muscling and on their territory, no, it was pretty funny If they had caught if they caught you while you were in the middle of playing which could you have gotten in trouble or find or anything? I Don’t know Probably just giving a warning and just saying yeah. Yeah, maybe my buddy could have maybe they would have find him He’s the one with the license. I don’t know. I don’t know how much they really care, but maybe they care a little bit

By the way, I was driving in I was down in Key West by the way, okay So that’s where this was taking place, which is a very cool area. Have you been down there? No, I haven’t Yeah, so it’s worth going Yeah, so we rented some scooters some mopeds and the one that we rented was way way more powerful Than I was used to and it had a different

braking mechanism, the guy was like, don’t use the right brake and you know, only use them together and left brake. It was a little confusing. So I was making a turn and I thought I was used to it and I said, oh, this feels good. I’m used to it and I wasn’t and it just gave so much more power and it was just very awkward. The controls for it. And basically I just lost control and smashed into a car and my girlfriend was like, I have no idea.

how you still have a knee after that. And I was like, you know what, it just looks like, you know, after a Muay Thai training session, that’s all it is. So. Yeah, you look pretty bruised up, but not. Yeah, it was pretty bruised up. Well, it’s funny, last week, the police officer came over and was like, here’s a ticket for reckless driving. Like reckless driving. Wait, you really got a ticket? I did. I got it. He gave me a ticket. Oh, wow. I think he actually gave me a ticket for reckless driving. So I’m going to fight it. I’m going to be like.

There was nothing reckless. I was going the speed limit. I stopped at the stop sign. I just simply lost control. Like an accident doesn’t mean it was reckless. So he did give me a ticket for rest. I was, I was joking about the reckless driving. I didn’t actually legitimately got a ticket. Wow. Wow. Okay. Um, well I know you’ve been traveling, but have you, so have you been watching anything, uh, this past couple of weeks besides a Reacher, which we’ll get to a little bit later.

Um, not too much right now. I’ve been watching this. Um, you know what? It’s funny for our old, this would have been a great, uh, a great topic for our old show, the Jim wits. There is a, um, it was on Netflix. I forgot what it’s on, but I’ve been watching it, which is a basically about what happens with people’s health if they go vegan.

And it’s an honest one. Have you seen the show? I forgot the name of it. And they basically, they put people on these diets with exercise and they just compare it and they talk about it. It’s not only vegan, but what happens if you start eating a lot more plant -based diet? What happens to your health? It’s a popular show right now. I gotta give you the name of it. It would have been perfect for the gym. It’s pretty interesting.

What’s the verdict so far? I mean, does it seem to lean towards like, you know, yeah, you can be, you know, it would also be just the same or, or not. Or what’s the, I guess what’s the angle of it actually too? It is more of a. The angle of it is you’re going to be a lot healthier if you have eat a lot more plant -based foods. That’s what it really comes down to. It shows that, uh, people who eat a lot more plant -based stuff are, uh,

less likely when in older age to develop, uh, dimension Alzheimer’s, they lose some, they lose weight. Um, they’re healthier. They’re, they’re certain, you know, their, their organs are in better health. So stuff like that. I’ll give my one recommendation for this week. Actually a solid, so solid, uh, movie we were kind of browsing over the weekend with subvert for something to watch. And, uh, we came across a movie called she came to me.

So it stars Peter Dinklage, Marisa Tomei and Anne Hathaway are the kind of leads with them. There are a couple of younger actors as well. And so the premise, and this is, I’m not spoiling anything. This is all in the trailer. Basically, Peter Dinklage plays an opera. I believe he’s a composer. I’m not sure if he also writes the, I think he’s a writer as well. So composer, writer who has kind of lost his mojo. His wife is his old therapist who’s Anne Hathaway.

And he runs into a chance encounter with the character played by Marissa Tomei, who turns out to be a little bit, a little nutty and a bit of a stalker. And they have a one night stand that one night. Oh, and she’s a tugboat captain. And they have one night stand and that inspires him to write his next opera, which is a huge success. And then she’s back in the picture and you know, hilarity ensues. And what’s cool about that’s all in the trailer. So, you know, not giving anything away.

But what’s cool about it is it is that right? You do get that and it’s funny and it’s well done and they’re really good performances. But there’s also like a much more heartwarming story buried inside of it that was just unexpected. And so it’s just a really good movie, easy to watch. Yeah, like easy watch again, very good performances and kind of unexpected took an unexpected turn. Cause I think you’re, you know, when you have that premise and the way things are going, you kind of expect one thing. And again, you do get that, but.

it then kind of takes a bit of a turn into something that’s not that and it was actually very good. So highly recommended. You know, if you want something this kind of easy to watch, I think we rented it on Amazon. So I don’t know that it’s playing like, you know, on any streaming platforms without having rent it but solid recommendation. If you look, you know I did see something else that I recommended that that you see. It was called Here Comes the Next Challenger. And okay, yeah, it was a it was.

It was a documentary on Street Fighter II. And for, if you are Ryan and I’s ages, or even if you were a little younger, and I know that there’s been a generation, a lot of new generations have been playing this and now a lot of young kids are playing it, but we can’t express just how big Street Fighter II was. It was like one of those games that if you,

played video games, if you were a part of it, just everyone played it. It was the game, culturally, for kids our age and a little bit older and a little bit younger, it was so impactful. You can remember it, right? Just how big that game was at the time. Did you ever go to an arcade and like…

Oh, it’s really interesting. It talks about first off the a little bit of the origins of fighting games, video games and those sort of the one on one concept. And there was the original Street Fighter where they were starting to come up with it. And then it talked about the character development and how it wasn’t completely PC. It probably couldn’t come out now. And then they went into some technical issues about how they were going to program it because.

I always find that fascinating because at the time things, it’s not like it is now where you can program a movie as a video game, right? It was a lot more difficult. So they went into some technical things and then they went into, they talked about the woman who composed the music, which was really interesting. They talked about some of the storylines and where they got their ideas from. Then they talked about some of the…

the way that it was licensed for home systems. It was just really interesting. And then how the, how the fans really influenced the decisions to make future games. Like, Oh, well, we want this. They did it. Well, we want this. They did it. It’s too slow. There was, it was funny. There was a hack that I had never heard of that was really fast. And they were like, well, if the game makers were like, well, if we don’t match this, we’re going to lose out to this, to this illegal hack that’s making the rounds. So basically.

They had to they had to match it. It was really interesting. So if you are our age and you remember the Street Fighter 2 and just how big that game was and just how influential it was. And then it was funny because there was a whole list of copycat games that came out. I remember they touched on Mortal Kombat a little bit, but not too much because.

Those were always the two games and Mortal Kombat looking back was not a very good game. It got better, I think, but by then I had lost interest. Uh, it was just cool because of how gory and bloody it was and violent, you know, and violent, which was cool, but it wasn’t actually the gameplay. I remember not being very good. So it’s not very fun to play. Like street fighter was a lot more fun because the controls were, they really, they were like, like that was a big thing. They were like, if we don’t make these controls very natural,

It’s not going to be good. So they really stress the importance of very natural controls, interesting stuff. So yeah, very important. I saw you, you posted it. Yeah, definitely. Definitely something I’m going to check out. So, um, let’s get to get right to some news. So this is a bunch of, I mean, there’s so many kind of interesting news stories, uh, that I don’t know where to start. I don’t know how much we’re going to actually keep, uh, and some we might save, but something that came up about the fact that, um, that the NFL rigged.

the playoffs to get the Super Bowl so that Taylor Swift. All right. So I guess we’ll start with that one. Right. Yeah. Recruit Democrats to vote for Biden. Right. Yeah. Well, OK. Well, that was that was actually one of the news. So there’s I guess you have heard the conspiracy theory that this is all a Psy op and some level of like the entire relationship is fake.

And that, yeah, everything has been rigged so that in the middle of a super role or at some point she can she can endorse Biden and I and it people seem very angry. It is really weird. I mean, you know, I think we all like it’s a good conspiracy theory, but it’s unbelievable that anybody can actually believe that or just gullible. Sometimes that’s just the answer. I don’t know. Or just really dumb. Yeah. Or just want to believe something.

You know, it’s like there are plenty of, uh, plenty of conspiracies that are true and easy to believe in that like that’s not one of them. And I get it. Like, I think if you’re on, you know, it’s like we all, like, I think, you know, you know, we all have our blind spots and our areas where like, when our guy is in office, we, we, we’re not, we don’t scrutinize things nearly as much as when the other guy is or guy or girl. Um, and I haven’t had my guy in office ever in my life. It’s like, she’s a massive star and she’s getting people to vote.

And you know, the, the demographic don’t work well for that side. So, but, but like to take it. So, so it’s like, okay, cool. Get it. You know, I’m sure, you know, I’m going to have my blind spots, but like to take it to the extent that like, yeah, this is like a, just a crazy conspiracy that she’s going to, you know, endorse Biden and have every teenage girl in the country, you know, stand in line to vote for Biden is kind of kind of silly. So the big news story this, this week, um, which is, is just.

Insane so have you been following any of the Vince McMahon stuff a little bit? Yeah, I’ve been reading up on it. Just okay. All right everything from I’m gonna recount this Trafficking then just like just crazy. Yeah, so we count some of this funny thing is that none of it it just I think the craziest part of all of it is that none of it is a shocker You know

I think that when you know with with Vince, with Vince McMahon, we’ve known this stuff for decades. What he’s been made of. Yeah. I wasn’t, I’m not shocked at all. Yeah. I mean, everything that’s going on is shocking, but I’m not shocked at all. Yeah. Okay. So let’s, let’s go over it a little bit, a little bit step by step just so we can, cause there’s a lot involved in this. So he had several scandals in the last, um,

Over the last few years, that at one point resulted in him being kind of, you know, cast aside from the WWE for all intents and purposes. Um, you know, and then, and then he kind of was able to strong arm his way back in because they were trying to sell, which they eventually did to TKO or, or, you know, or to the company that owns the UFC that now they merged and become TKO. Um, and he was kind of, I think the chairman of the board, uh, still a large, potentially large role within the company.

And then news broke last week that there was a lawsuit by Janelle Grant who’s been identified and is out there so they’re not naming somebody who’s trying to stay anonymous. But the accusations are just insane. So basically, and you can read, if you can find there’s a story, a good story in the Wall Street Journal, but you can even read the entire, I guess, not the entire,

case file or whatever. But basically, her parents died. So they lived in Vince McMahon’s building. I’m not mistaken. Parents died. She’s facing some financial hardships. So you’ve got somebody who’s dealing with a lot of stress, both with the parents and also financially. And she’s introduced to Vince McMahon, who showers her with gifts, takes her to shows, offers her a job. And she gets a good paying job in the WWE. But

He’s effectively at that at some point just manipulated her into performing whatever sex acts that he wanted. And then, you know, she alleged that he, that she was forced into it, that she, you know, she was coerced in order to keep her job. There was accusations of outright just rape and sexual assault. Um, there was this, as you mentioned, the sex trafficking allegation where he basically ordered her to perform acts with other executives.

Uh, there’s allegations of, uh, that even that, that as part of Brock Lesnar’s deal to come back to the WWE, she was part of it as in she was going to have to offer herself to him and sent lewd video or explicit videos to him. And they were supposed to meet up, but I think weather stopped that from happening. Uh, you know, it just, there are text messages out there. I’m not going to go through meeting them, but just to find them that are just insane. Sorry. I got, I got to just.

Just chime in at this point. If you’re Brock Lesnar, really? Like, it doesn’t make any sense. It’s like what you couldn’t find another woman willing to provide sex acts to a very famous celebrity, right? You have to just, I mean, what, what? At some point, right? Like I wouldn’t, so it’s like at some point, right? Like,

We both know like that. I mean there’s so many situations of people. I mean obviously like this is beyond cheating But it’s just debauchery, but I think you do have this kind of boys club You know bro kind of mentality that that you know I I could see somebody like that like oh this it’s just almost like it’s a cool thing Oh look at this. He’s offering her you know like who knows what the nature of their relationship is who’s trying to impress? What kind of you know what kind of crap they talk?

And then all of a sudden you’ve got this, you know, this poor person, poor, poor woman who was like being thrust into the middle of everything. And yeah, it doesn’t, it’s like, it’s one of those things. I think the more you read it, uh, you can’t think about any of it with logical, like through any kind of logical lens, cause none of it makes sense. Why does, you know, why did you, cause like even if you’ve been so bad, you’re a billionaire, you could walk down the street and you know, if you really want to, you know, cheat, there’ll be plenty of people out there. So.

why go through this? The you know, again, why you know, the assault allegations? Why is he because he’s, he’s a psychopath, right? And so you could see him and brought is it? I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know too much about Brock’s personality on on the outside. But no, you know what? I’m wrong. Vince isn’t a psychopath. He’s a sociopath. Right? So

different so like he actually he enjoys this. I could see him just enjoying the fact that he would be able to manipulate this person, do that and show it off to his friends and just like it makes sense coming from Vince that he would get in, he would find himself in a situation like this. It’s not the first time. Yeah, I know that’s the thing is like I can totally see that it’s like something almost a badge of honor.

Uh, to do that, but it’s just, it, it, it, yeah, it’s bad. And then there was another thing that came out. So apparently the person that he was kind of, uh, you know, cause he, cause you know, if you look at it, it’s like, he, you know, he’s saying all this stuff about how he, you know, he’s the one that gets a schedule who she’s with or whatever. And so there’s another major executive within the WWE, John Lauren Itis. And so this thing just got me like, this is ridiculous. So he’s the other person that’s named in, in this. And, uh, basically he’s the person that she would kind of send her off to. Um,

And so he came out through his lawyer with a statement that was basically saying like, I’m a victim too. Right? So this person who this woman who was being sent to me, like, I’m a Vic, we’re, we’re both victims of Vince McMahon. And it’s like, no, you’re, you’re an adult, you know, whatever 60, 50, 50, 60 year old, you know, multimillionaire at this point, executive of a major publicly traded corporation. He can’t force you to, you know, cause, cause he alluded or, or, or, you know, it’s kind of.

alluded to the fact that, or the idea that she, you know, he, he felt he needed to do it to keep his job and that they’re both the victims of this. And it’s like, no, you’re not a victim in this situation. Like, I don’t care who, you know, at that point, there’s no, you know, it’s forcing you to cheat on your wife with a woman. And even if, even if that was a case, then you hang out in the hotel room and just say like, look, I’m, you know, we’ll hang out and watch TV, you know, but it’s, it’s all ridiculous. Like that, that part really got me as well. I mean, it’s all awful. Uh,

But that was also like, yeah, no, you’re not a victim in this. And it just makes it’s a bad look to even say you’re a victim in any of this.

Yeah, it’s.

feel bad for her. It’s terrible, terrible stuff. Once again, not shocked. This, um, you know, Vince’s depravity has been well documented over the decades and yeah, it’s just, he’s a, he’s not a good person. He’s a sociopath. He’s a bad human being. He’s just not a good person. We’ve known this for a while. Yeah.

No, I mean, it’s like, you know, this kind of thing. It’s, it’s, it’s, it’s still shocking. Just the, just the volume of things like, you know, when you read the story, you know, from like crapping on her, you know, crapping on her in the middle of a, you know, session, like it was just like, there’s just so much involved that I think it’s just the, the volume of things that, that, that she had to go through is, is just got to be overwhelming. And also the other thing is like, so he was, he, I guess she was, um, they, they had, there was a settlement.

And he just stopped paying on the settlement. So again, it’s one of those things. It’s like, why would, you know, if you did all that and you almost got yourself in trouble and you were able to settle, why would you stop paying? It’s also like the other weird thing of all of it is like, and so he stopped paying and now she’s suing him all of it’s You know, he had to resign. Yeah. Well, yeah, that’s the thing, right? I guess, you know, that’s, uh, that’s, and that’s, you know, supposedly his MO, uh, from like the days of the territories where, you know, buying out ter buying territories, you

And then reneging on whatever the deal is. Um, and that’s also the interesting thing is, uh, with him, it’s just how manipulative he is. Is one of the stories that a lot of ex or not just a lot of people will say about him is that like they’ll go into a meeting with him with one idea. And by the end of the meeting, he’s convinced them of the exact opposite and made them think that they thought of it, you know, it’s kind of one of those like, that’s how manipulative of a person he is. So I know that they, some people like, how could she, you know, have gone through it, you know, this or whatever. And it’s like, Hey, he’s a sociopath. He’s, you know, incredibly manipulative and also like you have to use someone who’s

going through trauma. And we, you know, you can’t put yourself in that person’s shoes, you know, because we’re not in that position. And, you know, it’s clearly somebody who was vulnerable and with somebody who is a serious predator. So yeah, just an awful, awful situation. And hopefully like, you know, like, okay, you know, he’s gonna have a massive fall from grace and this might, you know, ruin whatever legacy.

you know, I guess he was going to have. And, and, uh, there, is there talk of, um, is there talk of any criminal charges?

I didn’t see anything as far as I know this is just a civil suit. But, you know, who knows? Who knows what else is going to come out? You know, you just never know. I think a lot of times with things like this, right? Like, because it’s like, this can’t be the first person he’s done this to. And so does, I mean, maybe it is, but you know, it’s like, it’s highly doubtful. So you know, is that just like the first domino to fall? And then like, we’ll find out in, you know, a few months that like, you know, it’s, there’s,

dozens of other victims or something so yet i mean i’d something it’s it’s just a crazy story a sad story and hopefully you know he faces the consequences you know he’s uh… as he should you know nobody should get away with anything like that alright so uh… enough with the with the sad stuff uh… let’s talk let’s talk about some richer so um… we’re so you you had a friend uh… i know you said we were gonna try to get somebody on the show and then you told me uh… you had a story so so what’s the story about so i guess those that that’s so i i

I was at a party a few months back and a friend of mine was telling me how he was really into the… I thought he said the Reacher books would make sense. I was like, oh, well, that’s perfect. We’re going to do a podcast. You should come on. He actually asked me because he had listened to the Jimwits.

And he was like, Oh, are you doing a new, are you doing a podcast? I was like, Oh, well, absolutely. We are, we are doing the portable hall podcast, which is more of a, uh, like a geek pop culture thing for, you know, for, uh, topics that, that we enjoy and that other people that are sort of our age and around our age might enjoy young, you know, who knows, but I was, and he’s a, he’s a very smart dude and he’s a great speaker. And I was like,

Oh, this would, and he always makes really great conversations. So I was like, oh, that’s awesome. Why don’t you come on the show? And we agreed to it. And, and, so I texted him and I said, so do you want to come on the podcast? You remember we talked about it. He’s like, oh yeah, yeah. So what’s the format? Blah, blah, blah. And I explained to him, he’s like, so what’s the topic? I was like, we’re talking about Reacher. He’s like, huh? Um.

I was like, remember you talked to me about how you would come in, you were into all the books. He’s like, oh, well, you know, I read a lot of books, but I read mostly like Nietzsche and Herman Hess and, you know, Dostoevsky or whatever, and existential stuff. And I was like, well, I love that stuff, but I don’t remember. I was like,

Now could it be, so now another thing that’s funny, I thought maybe he said Reaper, which is funny because you’ve recently released Debt to the Ceaseless Reaper, which is awesome, right? But I think there was another graphic novel, Reaper, right? So I thought maybe he was talking about that. He was like, nope.

So he was like, I have no clue what you’re talking about. I was like, we have this conversation. I have no clue. And he was like, look, I’m, I don’t know what I’ve told you. It’s like, maybe all the booze after all these years have gone to my head. I swear. I explained to him what the podcast was about. He’s like, Oh yeah, I went and I read these books and he’s like, no, no idea what you’re talking about. So it will be my life’s goal now to figure out what.

books he was talking about. So um, speaking of so did you haven’t read any of the Reacher books, right? I have not. Okay, cool. Yeah. So for me, it’s like I come into it as a, you know, it’s one of those like, I feel like, like, the Reacher books are like seven dust to me, which is like, it is, it’s like just the, you know, it’s that that thing that just kind of, it’s easy, easy to take, you know, it hits the spot.

Right? Like, you know, every, you know, seven does comes out in the album and it’s like, it’s not the, they’re not amazing. I liked them a lot. And I think they’re an amazing live band, right? But the music’s not like, uh, you know, it’s nothing that’s going to set the world on fire. It’s not innovative or, you know, it’s, but, you know, it’s generally, they kind of everything kind of the same, but it just hits the spot. And, you know, every time, you know, it just works and same thing with the Reacher book. So basically like every year.

you know, that time of year comes around, you know, a new book comes out. And again, it’s not gonna, you know, not winning any Pulitzer’s, but like, it’s just solid. It hits the spot. It tells the stories, you know, in the way I like it. I love the character. food in a way. I love the way that Lee Child writes. Exactly, comfort food. That’s my, yeah, my, you know, aging brain not being able to think of that simple word, but yes, they’re both like, they’re like comfort food for me, right? So, so, um.

that’s where I come to it is basically like I’ve read all the books because I at some point I’m like a completionist. So I remember way back a client, a personal training client giving me it was like I was going on a flight and she’s like, oh, read this. And it was the first Reacher book and it was like, oh, this is this is cool. I like it. So I just got another one and got another one. And then at some point I was like, all right, well, I’ve read seven. Let me finish the series. And then I finished the series and I would just keep on, you know, every every year I just when the new book will come out, I read it. And again, like there’s some that are really, really good. There’s some that are

you know, not that great, but it all kind of hits the spot. And you know, I just love that character. And so every time a new book comes out, even if I’m maybe a little apathetic towards reading it, initially, once I started, I’m just into the story. I like I like Lee Child’s, how he tells stories. And then there was the, the Tom Cruise movies that came out. And I don’t know if you saw those, and we won’t go too much into that. But basically, the issue is, as you can see, Reacher is a massive guy in the books, you know, he’s a massive cat, he’s huge, and he plays a lot, and he’s just a force of nature.

Yeah, absolutely. Like he is a force of nature. He’s somebody you see him from a mile away and you’re like, who the hell is this big ugly guy? Like what the hell is, you who is this guy? Like that’s it. Right. And Tom Cruise, who’s got his own presence, his own presence. And, and he’s, he’s, he’s got massive balls with some of the stunts he’s able to do. Like Tom Cruise is my height. Uh, if not shorter, he is, he’s not a massive person. So no matter what his acting ability,

that is not the character. And I think a lot of fans of the books had that issue. And like the movies were serviceable movies. If it was about anybody but Jack Reacher, who, you know, a massive part of this character is his physicality and his fight style based on that physicality. And I remember there was this hilarious, I remember reading an interview with Lee Child where the author, you know, this is after like it was announced and he had the…

come up with he had some very diplomatic response to that, which is basically like, Oh, you know, reach is a force of nature. And, and Tom Cruise is a force of nature. So it was just like, you know, like, you know, in his head, it’s like, okay, either it’s, you know, look, I’ve got this massive smoothie star attached to my books or whatever. Or like, he just had to come up with a diplomatic thing to say, but what were the cases getting paid a buck load? Like, of course, he’s gonna go along with.

Okay, so like I would it’s a weird spot, right? So for me as somebody who is now written, you know written a graphic novel and I’ve got a couple other things in the works, right? There is something to be said for that right like there, you know, if you have a character that has very specific traits Would you sell out in order to you know? Would you sell out the the integrity of that character in order to make some money in order to get the notoriety? Right order to get it out there. That is a fair question. Like I don’t know what I would do right if you like hey, you know, I

It always depends on how much is some money. Yeah. Well, yeah, it’s like, it’s fair. It’s like, I don’t know. I don’t if they’re like, hey, Tom Cruise wants to play this character who was like black. Do I change that character? You know, if that’s an integral part of the character, do I change that because Tom Cruise wants to do it? I don’t know what I like. What is the what is the think of the name of one of the longest running game shows?

I don’t know what Jeopardy? No Wheel of Fortune? No Alright what? Just say it The price is right Okay If the price is right, you’ll change the character Oh okay alright I guess Here’s what I would say though If you’re saying me right now, you know

pretty much living paycheck to paycheck, you know, not complaining, but like, you know, me right now and you’re like, Hey, give you a buttload of money to take this character who’s got very specific traits that are part of the character and make it something else. I’d probably take it right now because I could use that money. But if I had a level of success, I may not, right? Because at that point, it’s like, I don’t need that. I don’t, I mean, yeah, I guess anybody needs, you know, I don’t know what kind of lifestyle he lives or whatever, but like, I feel like this is right. It’s, oh, there’s always the right price. I don’t know. You have very wealthy people who do things.

when the price is right. So that’s what it always comes down to. So season one of Reacher was a bit of like a revelation because Alan Richson, who was playing him, embodies that character. He’s probably a little bit too like bodybuilding built for Reacher. But whatever, I’m not going to, I’m not going to nitpick at it, right? He’s a massive guy who’s huge, who you see him and it’s like, who the hell is that guy? Like, right? That is…

Reacher, right? He’s a force of a physical force of nature that you see in and is terrifying if he needs to be. And I felt season one did a really good job with the character, with his fighting, um, with a lot of the action, the choreography, it took the story and adapted it really well. So this isn’t a season one review, but you can’t really talk about season one without talking about season two. And as somebody who’s a fan of the books, I loved season one because I think it really got the character and it was still fun. It had great.

choreography and again it told a good story and a good supporting cast. So what are your quick thoughts like when you saw season one what your thoughts on initial thoughts of the character of this of this world. It are it it it worked that’s the bet that they I didn’t question any of it look we know that that with a show like this you have to suspend your disbelief that’s fine I was totally willing to do it.

At no point did I ever say, oh, come on. Even the jail scene, I was like, okay, that’s fine. It worked, and I like the way they developed the characters. We’ll get to the villains, because I didn’t think they were particularly strong in either. We’re talking about season one. Okay, neither. I think they were particularly strong, but they were a little bit better in season one, because.

They annoyed you, right? And there was also some red herrings and a few little things like that where you thought, oh, it’s this, and then they hit you with a, oh no, it’s not that, like, you know, with a couple funky little reveals and false leads. So it was good. It was totally entertaining. It flew by very quickly. And I liked the supporting cast, right, because…

He had, there was a great foil to him, his exact polar opposite character, right? And then there was his, his romance interest who was quirky as well. So it all And they had good chemistry. They had really good chemistry and it was, yeah, it was interesting. The, the, you know, there was actually one thing that annoyed me a little bit and that was the blues angle.

It was like, Oh really? It was like, come on. But that’s part of that was in the story. Like that’s, I liked it. That’s like, that’s okay. So here’s the strange that he’s following just because this blues guy he’s goes to this town just to follow up on that. Like that, that was the one, the one thing I disagree. 100 % disagree. I disagree. So this isn’t a season one review, but, um,

So first of all, I will do that. Like I’ll be on a vacation and I will find some random obscure thing and just like take a detour for hours to see or, or, you know, whatever about some obscure thing. But I think that’s the character, right? Like he’s got his specific, very specific likes. He’s basically, he, you know, he’s like hobo Batman, right? Like he, he doesn’t, he lives with his toothbrush, right? Like that he has nothing. And so he, and he’s got nowhere to go. So like he can just on a whim decide, you know what?

this blues, you know, this blues singer was from that place. It’s as good a place as any. Let’s go. Like that’s totally, that’s totally the character. And like I said, like I can, you know, empathize with that. Like I, you know, I totally will go out of my way. Everything happens in this way. So you do have to, okay. Yes. So it is a show like you do. There’s a lot of suspension display for the show. So like, that’s fine. I’m just saying the blues angle.

I kind of like that’s totally his character. It the blues angle, but it was all that that’s what led him to, to this one random town in the US where his brother is involved and all this stuff is going down. No, that like, that’s an insane coincidence. It makes no sense. Yeah. No, you’re, you’re 100 % right on that. You’re 100 % right on that. Um, there’s, for both of the seasons, there’s a lot of suspension of disbelief to, to allow any of this to work, but generally the, just the ridiculousness of it and the action.

Especially in season one makes you forget all that and not forget it. It’s like alright. I’m in I’m just gonna go for it I’m not gonna very entertaining, but let’s get to season. Let’s get to season two because I felt like season two You know may or may not have dropped the ball. I’m interested to hear what what your thoughts are so I Guess without giving your review away fully, you know, just kind of high level What were your thoughts like did you think season two was a letdown compared to season one?

if I would call it a letdown, but I was not as as captivated by it. Let’s just say they went really far on the on the special ops sort of thing. And it was just like it was like the episodes all sort of melded into each other. And it’s hard like the story sort of developed. And, you know, there was this thing about, you know, I guess the big underlying issue was well, well,

Was the member of the team, did he betray them? Was he in on it? Was he, you know this? There was a lot of that aspect and it just went on and on and there was no real intrigue or mystery. You knew who the villains were pretty soon and it was, you know what it turned, it seems more like an old cartoon where you knew the villains and they just were worked as foils for each other.

And there wasn’t much, the action was fun and stuff like that, but there wasn’t much of a strong plot developing. It just wasn’t, it didn’t have that same intrigue as the first season. And this is where the book’s kind of, so the first season and the first book is really good because it has an interesting story and it’s about like,

The thing about the first few books that I really liked, and this is going to be me, you know, it’s not to compare the books to TV, but it’s more for me like context. I’m not going to be like, Oh, the books are better. And then whatever, you know, I don’t like to be that guy. Um, but I do think that the books give a lot of context into the story and, and, and explain why I think there were, I think I know why choices were made basically. So I’ll give you a couple of kind of pieces, uh, bits of context here. So generally like the thing about.

the first book and the first season and some of the subsequent books is there a lot of times about something about specifically about America often that, you know, we don’t know a lot about. So book one is a lot about is about counterfeiting, right? The story is counterfeiting. What you don’t get in the TV show because you just can’t because you can’t go into that detail is the book goes into great detail about how money is made, the history of currency and and how counterfeiting works. And it really goes into great detail about that one little thing.

And what I liked about the first few books is every book kind of had its angle. Like here’s some obscure, weird thing you don’t think about, but there’s a lot of information on it. And I really liked, and so I felt like we didn’t get that aspect of it in season two and it kind of affected the story. Part one. Part two is Reacher is generally a loner. So what happens is he’s this loner who finds himself in a town and something happens and he’s got to help figure it out. And while he’s in that town, he’s going to meet, you know, he’s usually going to meet somebody that is going to help him out.

He’s going to meet somebody that’s going to be his love interest. And then he’s going to meet the villains. And then, you know, sometimes the, you know, the, the love interest or the, or the friend turns out to be whatever it is, it’s like, he goes from town to town, meeting new people, experiencing, you know, and being richer around new people. And this book in chronological order, or at least in book order doesn’t happen until like the 13th or 14th book. So from a reader’s perspective, right? Cause I don’t like, I didn’t, the team up book happens.

after you’ve gotten a dozen books of Reacher being a loner. So then it’s like, okay, here’s something different. I don’t think it works in season two because I want more of Reacher being a loner. I want more of Reacher showing up in a town, meet people, and then beat the hell out of people, and then go on to the next town. And then maybe in season five or six, we’re like, all right, cool, let’s get the team up. So because…

we got the team up so early, I think we lost a lot of what makes that character and what makes it work and what made, I think, season one work. Because I just didn’t, I was never bought into the special investigators unit. Like I never really cared about that group. And so I never really cared about the flashbacks. And I think his, his, um, chemistry with the, the woman who plays Negley is great. Like I think she’s great and they have great chemistry. She was in season one, but the rest of the team I could care less for, and I could care less for that story. So that’s part of also where I just felt it didn’t, it just didn’t work.

Yeah, I just didn’t get why they jumped into the the whole the team up special ops sort of thing. And I know that there was a history like, like they could have touched on some of the history, but continued along the lines of the first season with, as you said, he’s a loner. He’s, you know, he’s in this town, it’s a lot more interesting. And it just it’s just sort of turned him into this, like a team sort of deal where everyone you know, they’re working together and

It’s it there’s there’s no intrigue, you know, the characters and there’s no they don’t develop at all. There’s just there’s there’s not much to it. Like, you know, you know what you’re getting after the second episode of the season. And that’s it. And it just goes and it just progresses along those lines. You know, the the love story is sort of like meh meh.

It doesn’t really advance anything. It’s not very interesting. It’s like, yeah, they touched, oh, there was always something going on between them. It’s like, eh, eh, right? And it’s just, everything that, like, sort of, as you said, that what was very charming about the first season was completely gone. And it just turned into a caricature of Reacher based on the first season. It’s him.

but now in a completely different context that is just not interesting at all. And the villain, the villain, the funny that we are, let’s get into that. The, the, the interesting villain had no role. It like showed up like little things. And then the boring villain had all the screen time. It’s like the, and then they, you know, you see what I’m saying there. There was a good villain and he wasn’t a part of the plot at all. And then it’s just, it was, yeah. And then he dies like,

Nothing. And then they just kill him off weirdly. And it’s just like, it’s like, yeah. Yeah. You know, I agree. I think it, uh, there was some, the, the, the, the last episode was not good. Like I did not like, did not enjoy then some of the choices they made where they like, where they shot down the plane, a spoiler alert where the shot down the helicopter at the end, they let it go just to shoot it down. Like, yeah.

Like it made no sense just like, oh, you’re just killing people and sort of these are the good guys. You’re doing it for fun. It’s like, oh, let them think they’re going to escape and then let’s shoot them down. No, that’s like a, like he doesn’t like as a character, like he doesn’t sense like he kills for justice. He kills to save himself, but he’s, he doesn’t like murder people for fun. And that was kind of bizarre. Bizarre. It was weird. That was a weird choice.

The whole ending was just not good. I do think that was an issue. The villains were not interesting and didn’t have much to do. And they were just very much mustache twirling. We’re in an age now where I think a lot of our, when we get villains, at least whether or not you agree with them and whether they’re genocidal or crazy or whatever.

you, they, they at least have a purpose often. And like, you can at least understand their perspective, whether or not you agree with it. In this case, it wasn’t, it was like, okay, here’s a rich guy who just wants to make some more money. And then another guy that kind of brokers that, but there was no motivation for them. So for me, it’s like, well, I, they’re just, they were just very, just like generic, you know, mustache twirly, like, or, you know, we’re just, we’re villains for the sake of being villains. And yeah, it just kind of, it rubbed me the wrong way this season, you know, and yeah, I agree. Like season one’s villains weren’t.

nearly weren’t, you know, you know, it wasn’t like the Joker, you know, in the dark night or something, but like, at least they, you know, interesting and presented the substance. Yes. Yeah, exactly. You know, and this one is like, okay, here’s the guys just kind of, you know, it didn’t make sense. And I think the other thing is there were a lot of, like you talked about, you know, if the show is fun and, and I’m having a good time,

I’ll look past a lot of those glaring things. Like you mentioned, like his brother, you know, in season one, like, yeah, that’s a, those are pretty massive coincidences that take a lot of suspension disbelief. But if you’re having a good time, yeah, you’re always allowed one, right? That’s our rule. But even beyond that, like if you’re having fun with something, I think it’s a lot easier to swallow that. It’s like, all right, look, you know, cause like, again, when I tell people I reach, it’s like, look, it’s crazy. It’s insane. It’s kind of dumb sometimes, but it’s so much fun.

And again, it’s like, it’s poor Batman, you know, like just have it just roll with it. I can say that about season one. I can’t say that about season two. So like a lot of things stood out. So I’ll give you a couple of things that really drove me crazy. And maybe you can tell me if there’s anything else, but like, so there was the, remember when they were attacked by the motorcycle gang that’s supposed to murder them, but they attack them without guns. So you have a motorcycle gang that attacks them, but with no guns, even though everybody else everywhere has guns all over the place.

There is the guy traveling with the missiles, so they’re stealing all these missiles that are extremely valuable, and he’s traveling by himself with no backup. Oh yeah, that trophy. $600 million in missiles. I remember saying that at the time. Oh, this ultra security risk of these expensive, what, they’re not going to have an armed fleet carrying it? It’s like, give me a break. Yeah, you know, it’s crazy.

There was like people don’t lock their phones, like every phone you have to lock it. And there were the situations where they get bad guys phones and you just swipe it open. Like, you know, at least like, and then like there was another point where there was a big fight at a construction site and it had clearly been closed probably for hours, but there was still wet cement at the site, which again made no sense. So it was like, there’s just all these things. It was, it’s like lazy writing almost like why would you…

You know, it’s just so, there’s just such glaring things that, you know, a couple of times they try to write things away with one line or so, but it was just, none of it made, made sense to me. Was there any, anything that stood out to you? Well, the, going sort of back to the villains, there is a head villain who gets no, like talk about no motivation. Basically the, the politician, there’s nothing about him. It’s like, he’s the head, like,

The ultimate like yeah, you have these other guys and it all comes down to him at the end and like, what’s you know, his motivation is we don’t want any loose ends. That’s the motivation. It’s like, come, you know, come on. I do the funny though, the, um, I did like the one character, the police officer, right? Yeah. Who, um, that to me was actually the best his, um, him and Reacher sort of going back and forth. That was the best part of the.

thing and then they killed him off, which I guess is fine. Right. He goes, goes down sort of in a historic heroic blaze of glory, which is fine. That was actually the best part of the season, which I liked. They had a good chemistry. They were the only characters with good chemistry. I thought, yeah. Yeah. Right. And then they sort of go into the family of another thing was, you know, and I’ll hop on this last episode. The last 20 minutes was nothing. It was like them giving out money. And this is, it was like,

There was no suspense. It just, I don’t know. It was, you know, it was weird choice. Like you haven’t watched Fargo. Um, we were talking about that, like the, cause the last episode of Fargo had a similar thing where, like the big stuff happened early. And so it was kind of a long, like drawn out ending. Uh, Sinek and I disagreed on it. I, uh, to an extent I was, I liked it because I thought that it was a very impactful, like last couple of minutes. So basically like it was this thing where the action happens early.

then the most of the rest of the show or the episode was kind of just long and dragged out and, you know, kind of an epilogue giving you, you know, this is what this person’s doing. This is what that person’s doing. But then you get this very impactful scene at the end. It was like a big swing to me and I thought it worked. So in this case, it was kind of similar, but there was no swing. It was just like, it just kind of ended on a whimper. So yeah, not, not great. And the other thing is separate the episodes in my head. Like, yeah, it not the other thing. It was just kind of, I remember they had the,

Remember the the woman who worked for the company and they had to protect her right sort of out of nowhere They don’t establish her character at all right that she knows, you know She’s scared and like you thought that she was in on it or but then turns out she’s just doing her thing and now they’re after her and they have to protect her and then she just disappears they’re like, you know, it like just there’s there are loose like

they for you know, that was another thing. It’s like, all right, so these these villains hate loose ends. They put no effort into like, we just like, oh, she’s with friends, you’ll never find it. Okay, let’s just give up. Right? These these very, very wealthy people with with reach and you know, they don’t politicians and they can get everywhere. Okay. Oh, Reacher says we won’t we can’t find her. So we’re just gonna give up. Yeah, that makes total sense. Yeah. No. Pretty ridiculous. Yeah.

No, so, so yeah, I think, I think we’re in agreement. Childish. Where the season was. So the one, the one other thing I’ll say before we give our kind of final thoughts and rating is that I was disappointed in the fight scenes too. Cause I feel, and again, this is probably part of the team up part. Like, you know, Reacher, one of the fun things about him in the book is he’s a great, so, and again, this is really hard to do on TV. So another cool thing about, about, you know, him in the books and something that even has influenced like my own like.

one thing, there’s this one, I’ve told you for a long time, there’s one book I’m writing and there’s this scene that I’ve always like loved writing because it’s about like, it’s like fight theory, like, you know, you’re getting into somebody’s head that is fighting and the strategy they’re using. And so a lot of the books is interesting because you’re in his head as far as what choices he’s making when he’s fighting. And you can’t do that on TV. So fine, but.

I thought that season one had really good fight scenes and really good fight choreography. And, and you got to see him being again, this just wrecking ball, you know, he’s not, you know, he’s somebody he does use strategy, but he’s also just a massive person who just is again, a wrecking ball. He’s going to beat the hell out of you. And you know, it takes a lot to take him down. And I feel like we didn’t get as much of that. Like, you know, we got a lot of him shooting people and we got him shooting a helicopter.

but we didn’t get the same, outside of the time, the one awesome scene is when he kicks the front of the car and the airbag pops out. That was pretty awesome. But we don’t get the physicality that we got, I think, in season one, and I was a little disappointed in that. Well, for instance, that one scene where all the, what was it, when they’re in the truck yard, they’re around where all the trucks are, and those guys show up.

and they’re like, Oh, well, look, we and who was they had law enforcement show up on their side. It was it was it was was lame because and even the people who were fighting against what was their motivation? Oh, they’re just hired guns. Like that annoyed me too, because the some of the people that he was fighting in the first season, they had a vested interest in fighting him. Everyone he fought in season two was a hired gun, or the villain. Yeah. So

It’s hard to believe you have that sort of motivation to, um, to, uh, to, to, to, you know, to fight when you’re a hired gun, you would just, people are just going to lay it’s like, why am I going to risk my life? Like what, just cause you’re getting paid or you’re going to risk your life? It doesn’t make any sense. Like in the season, first season, people, they were invested in what they were doing. So I think that’s a big thing too. Like the people he was fighting in the first season were not faceless.

in the second season they were. So that to me has a lot to do with it as well. Why you and of course less, less hand to hand more, you know, explosions and gunfires and stuff like that, which is fine if it’s done really well, but it wasn’t done all that well. So that’s the whole thing. Yeah. No. Yeah. It’s disappointing. It was definitely disappointing season just compared to how, how, how much fun season one was. So, all right. So Justin, give me, you know, just

your final thoughts on this season as if you need to give us more and your rating on a scale of one to ten one to ten first season i’m going to give it an eight i thought it’s worth watching very entertaining second season i’m going to give it a three just not you can’t discern like i look i don’t i don’t know like it’s just not it’s just it’s almost not worth watching it’s just it’s boring it’s not compelling even from the first season

You know, it’s fun, even for the first episode, I was like, uh -oh, this is not gonna be as good. Like, just right away, it just wasn’t as gripping. I give it a three because there’s a lot of other shows out there that you could, with limited time, you’re really gonna waste your time on this whole season. Find something else to watch.

All right. Um, so yeah, yeah, I echo a lot of your sentiments. I think that, you know, in the, in the books, like I said, he’s, he’s a force of nature. Um, but he’s, he’s a loner force of nature. And I think that’s where he works best. And I think this season suffers from, you know, giving us something that maybe would work better later on. Uh, but also I just think the season, it’s just suffered from like lazy writing, there was boring villains, uh, very cliched lines, except.

there was one really good line which or someone’s like where someone says I feel exactly what it is with like you know what do you think is the first first person shooter and Richard says I am a first person shooter so somebody grew up gaming that was that was a cool line like that that worked right like that was a pretty damn good line I remember what he said I was like but it’s sort of it’s sort of like but yeah it’s like fandom though right it’s like when you write yeah but still like

Yeah, but it works. It worked at least that line. But otherwise, you know, otherwise it was very uninteresting characters to me outside of Negley and Reacher and maybe, I’m forgetting the other cops, the cops name now, but outside of those three, I could care less about any other character, you know, on the show. And I just wanted to see more Reacher fighting. I think even the fight choreography was just lazy compared to season one. And it was just because of that, all of the unbelievable, ridiculous things stood out.

I still think, look, it was somewhat fun in spots, but I really do hope that season three pivots back to what made season one work. So for me, yeah, it’s a big disappointment. I’m not going to go as low as a three. I think if you’re a fan of Reacher, like fine, you know, it’s fine watching, but I’m going to give it a 6 .5. What about the first season? So that for, oh, yeah, for, well, first season, first thing I give in, I give in.

It’s weird because I’m a little biased. I’m going to give it an eight and a half because I think it is, it, you know, as a fan of the property, I think it did, they did a really good job as a fan and I think it captures it, captured the character. And again, it’s a fun season. It’s if you, you can sit and nitpick and maybe drop that score, but I think an 8 .5, just cause I just had a blast with that season. And so that’s what makes this one just more of a little bit of a gut punch, just cause that first season was so good that this one was, it was quite a bit of a letdown. I’m hopeful.

that they could do it right in season one, they could do it right again, but we’ll see what happens in season three. I know it’s renewed for season three, so we shall see. Sure it is.

Alright everyone, so thank you for listening to the show. Feedback is always welcome. Like, subscribe, all that good stuff. You can catch us at Portableholepublishing .com. Everything is up there. We’ve got a newsletter coming out. Definitely subscribe to that when it is out. And on social media, pretty much everything is at Portable underscore hole, if I’m not mistaken. So anyway, thanks again, Justin. And until next time, watch out for the hole.


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