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Leverage Continues in Paperback Form

on Mon, 05/13/2013 - 00:00

Over the course of five television seasons, Nate Ford and his team of highly-skilled former criminals assisted an assortment of ordinary citizens who were left with little recourse in the face of corporate greed and government corruption. The TNT drama not only provided “leverage” against such injustices but hours of entertainment for fans of the series as well. On December 25, 2012, Leverage aired it series finale, bringing closure to the character arc of Nate Ford while setting up a future for the rest of his colleagues that ensured that the “little guy” would continue to have someone looking out for them, especially during situations in which the legal system failed to provide protection.

Although Leverage the television show may have ended, the story of “hitter, hacker, grifter, thief and mastermind” lives on through a series of paperback novels published by Berkley during the first five months of 2013. Instead of picking up where the series left off, however, the books fit within the narrative of season four, when the Leverage Team was based out of John McRory’s Bar and Grill in Boston. Thus while not an actual continuation of Leverage, the setting does allow all five major characters to play a role in the proceedings and the novels themselves remain true to the group’s dynamics as well as the mythology already established on the television show.

The Mop and Lucky Files Review

on Tue, 05/07/2013 - 00:00

What’s a girl to do when she’s over thirty, has no current romantic interests and no longer has the tolerance to work as a waitress? The answer is easy—form a personal espionage business with her equally bitter and unemployed best friend. That’s the premise, at least, for The Mop and Lucky Files, a comedy webseries that has won multiple awards from the Best Shorts Festival in Southern California and the Indie Gathering Film Festival in Cleveland, Ohio. Although the narrative may share similarities with the HBO comedy Bored to Death, in which an unlicensed private detective finds his cases on Craigslist, The Mop and Lucky Files uses its storyline for more than just laughs as it also examines the differences between men and women as well.

The first season of The Mop and Lucky Files is divided into five episodes, ranging from nine to twelve minutes in length, that relate the beginnings of the under-the-radar agency started by the two main characters in addition to their first case together. The idea of “personal espionage” is the brainchild of Mop (Chloe Taylor), who comes up with the scheme when her former roommate leaves behind a copy of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Private Investigating. The bunkmate in question had suspected her boyfriend of cheating, and bought the book in order to spy on him. Rationalizing that there must be others questioning the fidelity of their own love interests, Mop convinces Lucky (Jennifer Erholm) to go into business together and offer a cheap, unofficial way to keep tabs on wandering boyfriends.