Yaysa Roque-Rivera Yaysa Roque-Rivera
Starpulse Contributing Writer
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Yaysa Roque-Rivera is a college graduate with a degree in Cinema Studies currently delaying the inevitability of graduate school by writing about film and television on the internets. She is passionate and borderline obsessive when it comes to her favorite TV shows which include Mad Men, Parks and Recreation, Friday Night Lights, 30 Rock, Lost, among many, many others.

'Togetherness' Recap: 'Family Day' & 'Handcuffs'

1/19/2015 9:02am EST
HBO expands its “indie” television brand/block with its latest comedy, Togetherness. Yes it is another one of those ‘middle-aged white people with problems’ shows, but helmed by the indie movie favorites Duplass brothers, the low-key comedy works.

The pilot episode does a fine job in introducing the characters and setting up the main conceit of the show. Brett and Michelle Pierson find themselves in a marital rut, with three young children and a stagnant sex life, but it’s all about to get messier when Brett’s long-time friend, Alex, and Michelle’s sister, Tina, move in with them indefinit...

'Parks And Recreation' Season 7 Premiere Recap

1/14/2015 3:42pm EST
Parks and Recreation
Picking up after the finale’s surprising time leap, it is now the year 2017 and things have definitely changed in Pawnee, Indiana. The Parks and Recreation premiere clues us in on what various characters have been up to in the last three years, yet doesn’t overbear us with exposition leaving us with some ambiguities and intriguing questions, like: What the hell is Morningstar, how did it ruin Ron and Leslie’s relationship, and (perhaps most importantly) what exactly does a Shia LaBeouf-designed wedding dress look like?

In the first half-hour, aptly entitled “2017”, Leslie wants to build a ...

'The Affair' Season Finale Review: 'It Wasn't Real'

12/23/2014 9:11am EST
'The Affair' Season 1 Finale Review: 'It Wasn't Real'
The first season finale of The Affair takes an ambiguous approach with its conclusion and leaves some of the mystery still alive for the season to come. Though it is not explicitly communicated, the series hints at definitive answers regarding Scotty’s death. For instance, Noah’s paranoia about his car certainly tells us that Scotty was run over by that particular vehicle and that he might actually be guilty, despite the fact that the show never confirms who was driving the car that fateful night (leaving that specific detail up for debate). Other mysteries that have run throughout the seas...

'The Affair' Review: 'I Don't Want This Life'

12/16/2014 2:32pm EST
The Affari: Ruth Wilson and Dominic West
Episode 9 takes The Affair into full-blown, soap opera, melodrama territory and I don’t completely hate it. It has definitely taken a significant turn with the mounting drama surrounding these characters especially in these last few episodes. What began as a contemplative examination of human behavior has evolved into an intensely distraught and messy narrative with various threads and characters intertwining. While it may seem like a drastic shift, it doesn’t all feel out of the realm of possibilities. Let’s not forget that the series opened with an unknown crime story, a kid faking a suic...

'The Affair' Recap & Review: 'Safe'

12/10/2014 10:24am EST
The Affair
Remember when I thought Noah was the most reliable narrator on the show? Midway through the season, I began to deeply question Alison’s recounting of her experiences that summer. Week after week her story was a depressing tale of a meek, generally innocent and troubled woman, who just got swept up by a suave and attractive but married man. Noah was her only source of contentment, the only means of escape from her tragic existence. She was a martyr, supporting herself and her husband after the death of her son, liked and nurtured by everyone around her. It was a little much, and it turned me...

'The Affair' Review: 'A Selfish Act'

11/25/2014 10:25am EST
The Affair
Focusing on the fallout of Noah and Alison’s affair, Episode 7 might be the finest hour the show has given us. There is no question that the most interesting material in the show hasn’t necessarily been the actual scenes between Noah and Alison indulging in their affair, but everything else, really: the scenes that show them dealing with their respective families/world and how their actions affect, however small or inconsequential, their lives and the people around them. Week after week I find myself wondering more about Helen, Cole, the Lockhart Ranch and even the criminal mystery than I d...

'The Affair' Recap: 'Don't Wake Up Now.'

11/18/2014 1:50pm EST
The Affair
“Sometimes I worry you’re just a really great dream.”

We were warned from the very beginning that this affair would probably end in bad terms or cause a lot of hardship not just for Noah and Alison but also to the people close to them (a murder investigation will do that) and Episode 6 seems to be the beginning of the end for their brief period of adulterous bliss. Sooner or later that dream was inevitably going to turn into a giant mess of a nightmare. In this latest episode, it is specifically Noah’s nightmare that, despite the usual two-act structure, is the driving force of he entire ...

'The Affair' Recap: 'Stop Doing Bad Things'

11/11/2014 3:20pm EST
The Affair
After deviating somewhat from the established narrative structure The Affair returns to the standard formula (albeit in the reverse order) with Episode 5. In a notable development, we finally learn who the victim of the crime in question is and are closer to understanding the larger, intertwined mystery. But while this development is crucial to the narrative, the show doesn’t dwell on this new piece of information. It treats it as nonchalantly as possible, because, while it is a pretty major detail, it is not the focus of the show or the episode. This hour is all about family. Noah and Alis...

'The Affair' Recap: 'Are You A Good Person?'

11/5/2014 8:21am EST
'The Affair' Season 1 Episode 4 Recap: 'Are You A Good Person?'
Episode four of The Affair takes a markedly different approach exploring a significant development in the Alison/Noah relationship. Though the structure of the episode is similar to what has come before (Noah’s POV followed by Alison’s POV) the two perspectives don’t portray the conflicting experiences of the two characters, instead Alison’s recollection continues from where Noah’s ended and goes on to narrate what happened consequently as opposed to going back and recounting her experience of the same events. It is a surprising and slightly jarring divergence from a formula that we have gr...

'The Affair' Season 1 Episode 3 Review: 'Don't Wake Up'

10/27/2014 9:45am EDT
'The Affair' Season 1 Episode 3 Review: 'Don't Wake Up'
For a show entitled The Affair, it sure is taking a long time getting to the affair part of the story, but I guess that has been the point all along. Even though the series’ premise suggests we’d be watching a titillating story about an illicit and potentially tragic love affair and nothing more, the show has delivered an intriguing and intricately built narrative that goes beyond its initial appeal. It is not just about two people falling into bed together; it is about how their unexpected attraction will leave a trail of consequences and lasting impressions on the lives of those around th...

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