I Hate Television

Not the stuff on your shower tiles.

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walto
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by walto »

Netflix's Thirteen Reasons is very well done. Several of the male leads are terrific, and I'm finding the whole thing gripping. Didn't read the book, but the teleplay is excellent.
"Freedom of thought and speech without available means of gaining information and methods of sound analysis, are empty. Protection and security are meaningless until there is something positive worth protecting." E.W. Hall

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dialectics of shit
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Re: I Hate Television

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Going through the latest season of The Trip a bit too quickly—I need to savor it more—but it's just so enjoyable.

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The G Man
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by The G Man »

I think Saul is great and don't mind the slow pace at all. I do look forward to the Mike scenes more than the Jimmy scenes.

Master of None season two on Netflix was great, on par with Louie, IMO.

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walto
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Re: I Hate Television

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I've only watched two episodes, but have decided I don't like the Ansari show, Master of None. I thought it would be like Crashing, but...no.

Also, if I haven't mentioned it yet, I couldn't get through the first episode of this season of Fargo. Too stylized or affected or something. Everybody seems to hail from some indefinite era and has an accent and vocal patterns that are way over the top. (Almost Tim Conway saying "Miss Wiggins" on the old Carol Burnett show.) Also the cinematography is almost as quirky as every character. I tried twice, but just got increasingly annoyed and finally bailed.

A couple of other series I found I couldn't watch are Billions and The Borgias. Can't explain why, exactly. Who knows--maybe they're too grown-up for me. After all, I loved 13 Reasons. I also couldn't stomach the Nicole Kidman/Reese Witherspoon/Laura Dern thing set in Monterey--in spite of my daughter's recommendation.

I've found Better Call Saul engaging enough to keep watching this season, but I'm not loving it. One of the main actors isn't talented enough to carry a series (oh the mugging!) and the other is too old. Both are unattractive. And, as Jon mentioned, It's moving too slowly: I guess they'd like to get at least five seasons in before Saul meets Walter. I do like Rhea Seahorn and Michael McKean very much, though. Also, the people playing the bad guys are quite good.

There's an Early/Berlant production on Vimeo that I recommend. And the Show about the Show on (I think) Brick TV, which is available on youtube is equally strange and funny.
Last edited by walto on Thu May 25, 2017 8:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Freedom of thought and speech without available means of gaining information and methods of sound analysis, are empty. Protection and security are meaningless until there is something positive worth protecting." E.W. Hall

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jon abbey
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by jon abbey »

yeah, Master of None is OK but isn't a pimple on Louie's ass, pretty surprised Gordon thinks that.

the first episode of season 3 of Fargo is indeed oddly generic (for Fargo) and boring, but it gets better after that (haven't seen last night yet). I don't really know what it's leading to, and Ewan McGregor is a bad lead (in both roles) but I'm enjoying it, especially David Thewlist and his associates.

The Americans has also become quite the chore, the two leads are so good but the writing and macro plotting is not.

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walto
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Re: I Hate Television

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Just wanted to say that I added a couple of comments above before seeing Jon's remarks. I didn't notice that Gordon had praised Master of None.
"Freedom of thought and speech without available means of gaining information and methods of sound analysis, are empty. Protection and security are meaningless until there is something positive worth protecting." E.W. Hall

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The G Man
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by The G Man »

The Aaron Sorkin written dialogue of Billions is way over the top and the plots strain credibility, but I still enjoy the show. Damian Lewis, Paul Giamatti, and Maggie Siff are all very talented actors. BIllions is fun, but not to be taken seriously.

Is Bosch any good?

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Steve Minkin
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Re: I Hate Television

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MADOFF (2016) Richard Dryfuss/ Blythe Danner -- four hour miniseries from last year (not the new HBO one), very well done, informative and entertaining exploration of both the business and family stories. "He's waiting for me to pitch . . . I don't pitch."
"The first one who talks loses."

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walto
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Re: I Hate Television

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One more remark about Master of None (I've now seen one more episode from the first season). Like most other contempo sit-coms, there's lots of stuff about sex, cell phone etiquette, dating, race, ethnicity, gender roles, etc. But for such an intentionally hip, now, totally today show, the plots of the first three episodes remind me of stuff from Leave it to Beaver. You know, respect your fathers, don't use people, don't be beguiled by looks, etc.

Took a couple of episodes of Seinfeld to get the taste out of my mouth.
"Freedom of thought and speech without available means of gaining information and methods of sound analysis, are empty. Protection and security are meaningless until there is something positive worth protecting." E.W. Hall

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The G Man
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by The G Man »

walto wrote:One more remark about Master of None (I've now seen one more episode from the first season). Like most other contempo sit-coms, there's lots of stuff about sex, cell phone etiquette, dating, race, ethnicity, gender roles, etc. But for such an intentionally hip, now, totally today show, the plots of the first three episodes remind me of stuff from Leave it to Beaver. You know, respect your fathers, don't use people, don't be beguiled by looks, etc.

Took a couple of episodes of Seinfeld to get the taste out of my mouth.
We all have different tastes. My all-time favorite comedies are The Honeymooners and Seinfeld, nothing else close. Curb Your Enthusiasm is third.

My kudos were for MON season two, which was a step up from one, IMO. I love Louie (and also Horace and Pete) but thought "Lucky Louie", his first series was dreadful.

I thought this year's Crashing was very good and improved as the season went on. I hated "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia", which I know Jon likes but loved "Hello Ladies", which didn't do well at all. I also liked the British show "Coupling" for the first few seasons. It wasn't particularly good, but I LOL more than any other show.

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jon abbey
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Re: I Hate Television

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Lucky Louie was ahead of its time, pretty underrated. not Louie, but not so so far off that either, given the format.

second season Master of None is better than the first, but it's still pretty empty at its stylish core. I do like it, but nowhere near Louie, which may get my vote for the best 30 minute show ever.

I liked UK Coupling a lot, it's very cleverly written/assembled, I think Yuko and I have maybe seen the whole thing twice.

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The G Man
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by The G Man »

jon abbey wrote:.

I liked UK Coupling a lot, it's very cleverly written/assembled, I think Yuko and I have maybe seen the whole thing twice.
Do you remember the episode "The Man WIth Two Legs? (season 2, episode 1)" I laughed so hard it hurt. The last season was weak, after the actor who played goofy Jeff left and was replaced by a new character.

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Steve Minkin
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Re: I Hate Television

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Steve Minkin wrote:RIVERDALE -- new series on CW, Archie comics crowd in a moody, sexy, Twin Peaks-tinged reimagining. Enjoying the first episode.

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Saw every episode, and I'm sure it be back next year and I will be there.

When my daughter (now 27) was growing up, I'd buy her a couple of Archie comics a week, we still have boxes of them in the garage. The series takes Riverdale into areas the comics never sniffed.

The backstories -- of the parents and town -- are totally unexpected and amazingly fucked up. Miss Grundy is hot and has seduced Archie, Veronica's father is in jail, Jug's dad is a biker gang leader, Betty's mother is the the newspaper editor and the control freak from hell and her sister is carrying the child of the a murdered football star, Josie and The Pussycats are slick, Cheryl is bitchier than ever . . .

The core 4 -- Archie, Jughead, Betty and Veronica -- are great, each of the four emerging as a unique and interesting character, with Jug as the quasi-beatnik chronicler of the town. Creative, nuanced, and a great look. Recommended!

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walto
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Re: I Hate Television

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Watched the first two episodes of Showtime's new "I'm Dying Up Here." As my daughter has recently had a dishwashing gig at a comedy club in L.A. and also crashed and burned during an open mike, apparently, I'm extremely interested in this, although the show takes place in 1970. It's been pretty engaging, although I've caught a couple of anachronisms, I believe. Rosie--the Tsarina of the club, uses the word "fucktard" and the expression "ass crack of dawn." I seriously doubt either of those existed in 1970. Carol says one of the hats somebody is wearing is also of a more recent vintage. Dunno about that, but the high-waisted bells and the "free love" are definitely right.

Much darker than "Crashing" but kind of about the same stuff.
"Freedom of thought and speech without available means of gaining information and methods of sound analysis, are empty. Protection and security are meaningless until there is something positive worth protecting." E.W. Hall

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walto
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Re: I Hate Television

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Steve Minkin wrote:
Steve Minkin wrote:RIVERDALE -- new series on CW, Archie comics crowd in a moody, sexy, Twin Peaks-tinged reimagining. Enjoying the first episode.

Image

The series takes Riverdale into areas the comics never sniffed....The backstories -- of the parents and town -- are totally unexpected and amazingly fucked up. Miss Grundy is hot and has seduced Archie,....

Well, she was ALWAYS a hottie, no? Image
"Freedom of thought and speech without available means of gaining information and methods of sound analysis, are empty. Protection and security are meaningless until there is something positive worth protecting." E.W. Hall

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Piano Mouth
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Re: I Hate Television

Post by Piano Mouth »

Master of None Season 1 was great imo. Great to see full dimensional characters of people of color. Going to start Season II tonight after work. And here's a picture of my friend Michael with Aziz at the Season 1 wrap up party!
Image

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Steve Minkin
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Re: I Hate Television

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PianoMouth: I've done three Chinese weddings at Stanford this spring -- I'm a hot item for Chinese post-grads and post-docs, did a couple last year and the word's gotten around.

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Season 2 of Queen of The South has started, and I am there!

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Steve Minkin
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WILL

Post by Steve Minkin »

WILL (TNT) – Episodes 1&2, which aired together.

Shakespeare leaves Stratford and arrives in London in a new, very energetic, punk-rock (musically and stylistically), lurid, and bold telling of Shakespeare's early years in the big city. The sensational and shocking tone suits the times, when bear-baiting was the leading rival to the theaters and severed heads decorated London's bridges. The assumed plots involve Catholicism (punishable by torture and death), Marlowe (a spy with G Gordon Liddy associates as well as the leading literary light before Will's arrival, portrayed here as also leading an adoring gang of young gay men), Burbage, Kemp, and a bunch of lively fictional characters who combine to provide a credible and lively setting for Shakespeare's emergence. A regular supply of classic Shakespeare quotes and ideas issue from the mouths of various characters (the young author taking notes) as well as from the author himself, in not so sly nods to Bard's fans among the viewers.

It's out there enough that it could easily leave the tracks, but so far the show has shown a knowledgeable appreciation of The Bard along with a highly energetic and imaginative rendering of the times, and I'm solidly on board and looking forward to episode 3 next week.

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Steve Minkin
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A CENTURY ON FILM

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A CENTURY ON FILM -- Fascinating show I have on auto-record, 30 minute episodes on NHK-tv (Japanese) consisting of vintage Japanese b&w newsreel footage from throughout the 20th Century. Naturally, there is an emphasis on Asia one rarely sees in the west, so lots of old footage of Ghandi, Ho Chi Min, a young Mao, etc. Lots of great history and from an Asian-centric perspective that shines a fresh light on the history of our times.

https://www.nhk.or.jp/special/eizo/en/?uuid=e4u20fwk

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Steve Minkin
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Re: I Hate Television

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Third episode of WILL, and they're already starting to lose me. The abundance of lurid fiction is going to be regarded as heresy by mainstream Bardophiles, but their indignation will be as nothing compared to traditional Marlowe fans, most of whom will be livid at his portrayal. But these are not my major complaints.

The role of Catholic poet/ priest Robert Southwell, generally believed to have been a significant early influence on Shakespeare, is fleshed out and expanded here into a major personal relationship with him – pure conjecture but not inconsistent with what we know and an interesting sub-plot.

But a legitimate gripe from the traditionalists (and me) should be the distortion of the chronology of Shakespeare's plays. The show is presenting "Two Gentlemen of Verona" as his earliest success; but the historical evidence is clear that his earliest plays were "The Contention" (now knows as Henry VI, Parts 2&3), the prequel Henry VI, part 1 (which the show will mistakenly present as his next play), and Richard III. All of these were major successes, and were likely to have been partly co-written by Marlowe, which could have been a fruitful field for the show to have explored. The show instead invents a lovely young heroine, sister to the actor Burbage and daughter to the elder Burbage (Colm Meaney, a bright spot in the show), to serve as The Bard's early muse for his work on Two Gents.

But the show has already overdone the sadistic parts of the the anti-Catholic theme, featuring the historical Topcliff, and I fear there's more to come. And the Marlowe character has already jumped the shark, no mean accomplishment for a dangerous poet/ spy about whom virtually nothing is known; but the embarassingly silly gay orgy scene 'succeeded,' if that's the right word.

Worse, the show is almost devoid of ideas and insights, very unShakespearean. It's colorful and flashy as hell, but lightweight and paperthin.

And – worst of all -- Will is kind of a likeable country kid in the big city, with virtually nothing about him to suggest what he would come to accomplish. Even in his earliest works, it seems evident that Shakespeare was a much less innocent, much darker and more complex character than this earnest rube. At this point, the show's kind of argument for the non-Stradfordians – how could this bumpkin have possibly written these plays and poems?

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