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What was the last TV show you watched?

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^ I rather like "Wednesday", but modern writers don't seem to know how to tell a story without dragging it out needlessly. As a result, it, like many "new" shows, moves at a snail's pace and wastes a lot of time. I agree that it also feels at times purely like a CW/teen program (especially considering it mostly takes place on a school campus) which, at my age, I find uninteresting. The cast is doing a good job with their respective characters, but it wasn't until the seventh episode (out of eight) that we felt the entire episode was worth watching.
 

Tiki Tom

Call Me a Cab
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Oahu, North Polynesia
Watched a show last night on the 20th anniversary of “Love Actually.” Good lord, has it been twenty years? And that movie is now considered to be a Christmas classic?

Don‘t get me wrong. I liked the movie fine, but found it a little uneven.
 

Edward

Bartender
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London, UK
^ I rather like "Wednesday", but modern writers don't seem to know how to tell a story without dragging it out needlessly. As a result, it, like many "new" shows, moves at a snail's pace and wastes a lot of time. I agree that it also feels at times purely like a CW/teen program (especially considering it mostly takes place on a school campus) which, at my age, I find uninteresting. The cast is doing a good job with their respective characters, but it wasn't until the seventh episode (out of eight) that we felt the entire episode was worth watching.

I mostly enjoyed it, though it needs a couple of wrinkles ironed out. I'd like to see more of Wednesday in normie culture, not among fellow weirdoes. The one flaw in the 90s films was that they were too knowing - I preferred things as per the original tv show, where the family seemed oblivious to the notion they were anything but normal. Genuinely eccentric. Good castings in the roles, though. The thing that bugged me most was how they completely wasted Fester's arrival: what should have been a great reveal was destroyed by being given away in a trailer before even the first episode was screened. What did they think they were doing - making a Doctor Who regeneration scene???

Watched a show last night on the 20th anniversary of “Love Actually.” Good lord, has it been twenty years? And that movie is now considered to be a Christmas classic?

Don‘t get me wrong. I liked the movie fine, but found it a little uneven.

I genuinely consider it one of the worst films ever screened. That's my considered opinion - and I've seen the Star Wars Prequels. [/shudder]
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
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8,832
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vancouver, canada
Watched the first 5 episodes of Season 5 "Yellowstone"......It jumped the shark at least one Season back but this new season confirms it in spades. The characters were always borderline cartoonish and I think once that die is cast there is no where for the writers to take them other than to draw them evermore larger and even more cartoonish. I might even be insulting cartoon characters as the denizens of Yellowstone are far beyond that now. On the positive side, as a lover of Montana, the vistas are stunning.
 
Messages
18,008
Location
Funkytown, USA
Watched the first 5 episodes of Season 5 "Yellowstone"......It jumped the shark at least one Season back but this new season confirms it in spades. The characters were always borderline cartoonish and I think once that die is cast there is no where for the writers to take them other than to draw them evermore larger and even more cartoonish. I might even be insulting cartoon characters as the denizens of Yellowstone are far beyond that now. On the positive side, as a lover of Montana, the vistas are stunning.

You'll really know it's over when they do a musical episode.
 

Edward

Bartender
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23,689
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London, UK
According to IMDb (dot) com, it's only been 19 years.

Yes, it was originally released for Christmas 2003, which makes this feel premature. I expect it was styled as "twenty years since we made", as presumably principal photography was done, or at least started, in 2002. But hey, not so long before that the world had celebrated the dawn of a new millennium a whole year too early, so....

You'll really know it's over when they do a musical episode.


Oh, and how. I never even cared for the Buffy musical episode, let alone the horde of imitators who jumped on the bandwagon thereafter.... (The concept in Buffy was fine; the songs, however, were almost uniformly crap. Aside from I'll never tell, which was one of the most beautiful pastiches of a certain era of Hollywood screen musicals I've ever seen.)



Last weekend, I noticed that 11.22.63 has made it to 'included with Prime', so I watched that. Having really enjoyed the book some years ago, I found this a good watch. Also beautiful visually, and the wardrobe really capture the soft transition from the 50s into The Sixties which happened between 1960 and 63. A lot of nice little touches in the visuals in the background (graffiti referring to Oswald as a Patsy; 'redrum', an unpleasant character driving Christine among them). Some significant changes to the original, not least inventing the Bill character (the one slight weakness, if I'm being picky, was that Bill just seemed to accept the Future Man story far too readily. He was, however, a very clever device to give us a lot of exposition without a need for voiceover narration in a lot of otherwise very slow scenes). The only real point I felt was a little flat was the depiction of things falling apart in the present day after major changes made in the past. Felt a lot more post-apocalyptic than I remember the book being. I felt there was a lack of maybe another 20 minutes or so fleshing out just how things had gone wrong. Small problems, though. Overall it was beautiful, and a thematically faithful adaptation of the source material. While I think King is right not to make a direct sequel to this one, I'd love to see him write another book around the same, time-travel mythology.

Currently, I'm halfway through The English on BBC iPlayer. Really interesting show about the Old West, with the more marginalised characters as the leads. Beautifully made - evne if the story wasn't as good as it is, it would still be worth it for the visuals alone.
 

AmateisGal

I'll Lock Up
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6,069
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Nebraska
Really enjoying two British shows - the first is Slow Horses with Gary Oldman who plays a delightfully crass spy who is managing a bunch of reject spies from M15. Based on the books by Mick Herron. On Apple TV+.

The second is Three Pines with Alfred Molina. It's set in Canada and deals heavily with indigenous issues - missing and murdered indigenous women, the abuses perpetuated by the Indian boarding schools, etc. It's very well done. Also based on books by Louise Penny. On Amazon Prime.
 

Doctor Strange

I'll Lock Up
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5,125
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Hudson Valley, NY
I'm recommending Showtime's George & Tammy miniseries based on the first half. Both Jessica Chastain and Michael Shannon are giving Emmy-worthy performances, and it's the rare musical biopic that isn't just a parade of the familiar cliches that were so well demolished by Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story. (Of course, it does have aspects of that old A Star is Born plot, but it's what really happened.)

Mind you, I'm no big country music fan - I couldn't name a Tammy Wynette song other than "Stand By Your Man" (or a George Jones song other than "The Race is On") - but the acting is spectacular, and everything about the production is excellent. This will end up in a place of honor on the country music biopic shelf alongside Coal Miner's Daughter, Sweet Dreams, and Walk the Line.

George+Tammy.jpg

Edward, I watched two and a half episodes of The English and gave up on it. I adore Emily Blunt, but that damn dragged-out streaming-series pacing killed it for me. Did they ever get to a point where the story wasn't just about the leads taking turns getting captured and the other lead saving him/her?

I also gave up on 1899 two and a half episodes in for the same reason: the pacing. I was already exhausted by the show's "mysteries" long before they got to whatever Bermuda Triangle-ish resolution was coming. I just couldn't make myself care.
 
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AmateisGal

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6,069
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Nebraska
Started watching SAS: Rogue Heroes about the creation of the British Army Special Air Service. during World War II. I am quite enjoying it.
 

FOXTROT LAMONT

One of the Regulars
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271
Location
St John's Wood, London UK
Started watching SAS: Rogue Heroes about the creation of the British Army Special Air Service. during World War II. I am quite enjoying it.

Haven't looked. Considered selection bid at Aldershot but bit by the gold bug, I forsook pips for graduate
study at LSE then took to the City. Last film seen was Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover. Take a peep at this classic.
 

AmateisGal

I'll Lock Up
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6,069
Location
Nebraska
I do want to watch Lady Chatterley's Lover, the new one on Netflix. Jack O'Connell also stars in SAS: Rogue Heroes.

Finished watching the first season of Rogue Heroes and am looking forward to the second season!

I'll probably start the new season of Jack Ryan tomorrow since we're hunkered down for a winter storm.
 

Edward

Bartender
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23,689
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London, UK
I do want to watch Lady Chatterley's Lover, the new one on Netflix. Jack O'Connell also stars in SAS: Rogue Heroes.

Finished watching the first season of Rogue Heroes and am looking forward to the second season!

I'll probably start the new season of Jack Ryan tomorrow since we're hunkered down for a winter storm.

The wife watched the latest Chatterly last week - one to avoid, in her opinion. All about the sex, I gather, and misses the depth, nuances, and significance of the class politics which were the real subject of the original.

I've yet to see a film version I did think was any cop. The best one was not a dramatisation of the book, but rather the 1960 obscenity trial. Starring Rafe Spall. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Chatterley_Affair Very good, though I could have lived without the whole 'jurors have affair' side of the plot. The courtroom scenes are very well played, and a good representation of this. One of the two most important, English obscenity trials of the twentieth century, as the first deployment of the then-new defence of 'public good', as set out in Section 4 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 (itself, in part, a reaction to the UK's involvement in the European Convention on Human Rights).
 

FOXTROT LAMONT

One of the Regulars
Messages
271
Location
St John's Wood, London UK
I do want to watch Lady Chatterley's Lover, the new one on Netflix. Jack O'Connell also stars in SAS: Rogue Heroes.

Finished watching the first season of Rogue Heroes and am looking forward to the second season!

I'll probably start the new season of Jack Ryan tomorrow since we're hunkered down for a winter storm.

Yes Netflix, and I think you will most definitely enjoy this. I read Edward's post and will continue this review.
Good luck with the storm!
 

FOXTROT LAMONT

One of the Regulars
Messages
271
Location
St John's Wood, London UK
The wife watched the latest Chatterly last week - one to avoid, in her opinion. All about the sex, I gather, and misses the depth, nuances, and significance of the class politics which were the real subject of the original.

I've yet to see a film version I did think was any cop. The best one was not a dramatisation of the book, but rather the 1960 obscenity trial. Starring Rafe Spall. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Chatterley_Affair Very good, though I could have lived without the whole 'jurors have affair' side of the plot. The courtroom scenes are very well played, and a good representation of this. One of the two most important, English obscenity trials of the twentieth century, as the first deployment of the then-new defence of 'public good', as set out in Section 4 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 (itself, in part, a reaction to the UK's involvement in the European Convention on Human Rights).

Lawrence can be taken in portions, seen from angles emphasis what azimuth or quadrant the book lays
bare to individual, but here the love affair is paramount. Other issues not so perhaps but neither ignored.
 
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AmateisGal

I'll Lock Up
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6,069
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Nebraska
Binge-watched Season 3 of Jack Ryan over Christmas. It was fantastic!

Finished SAS: Rogue Heroes and watched the latest episodes of Three Pines and Slow Horses.
 

Edward

Bartender
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23,689
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London, UK
Edward, I watched two and a half episodes of The English and gave up on it. I adore Emily Blunt, but that damn dragged-out streaming-series pacing killed it for me. Did they ever get to a point where the story wasn't just about the leads taking turns getting captured and the other lead saving him/her?

The pacing never speeds up, no.... actually one of the things I liked about it. Maybe I'm just slowing down as I age, but I've really come to enjoy slow-paced, character stuff of late. I saw The Deer Hunter for the first time a couple of weeks ago, and really enjoyed how it uses that first act to build the characters and their pre-Nam life. (As an aside, the use of de Niro's wearing his uniform as symbolic of his alienation from those who weren't there on his return is just gorgeous.) I see too much stuff these days that isn't interested in building the character... Not for everyone, though, I know.

I also gave up on 1899 two and a half episodes in for the same reason: the pacing. I was already exhausted by the show's "mysteries" long before they got to whatever Bermuda Triangle-ish resolution was coming. I just couldn't make myself care.

I was a teenage Peaky, so that didn't bother me.... I was fine with the build up, just the actual reveal felt..... lazy. Maybe they can make that work with another season. It was, however, quite a popular show, so chances are Netflix would prefer to cancel it.

Started watching SAS: Rogue Heroes about the creation of the British Army Special Air Service. during World War II. I am quite enjoying it.

I was wary of that one myself - I've seen *way* more than a lifetime's worth of Jolly WW2 Adventures - but quite enjoyed it despite myself. Great soundtrack. Mayne is a fascinating character; I gather the family are said to be unhappy with his portrayal as it makes him too thuggish in their eyes. Unless you know where to read between the lines, they've kept away from dealing with speculation about Mayne's sexuality. (It was suggested a few years ago that he might have been gay; various political figures in NI queued up to label this a "disgraceful slur", an attitude which I'd rather hope we'd have gotten past by this point, but having grown up in NI....). The young English fella playing him does the accent rather well in my opinion. Be interesting to see what a second season brings.

Binge-watched Season 3 of Jack Ryan over Christmas. It was fantastic!


Started watching that yesterday. I'm in it purely to get to a later season where David Bedella has a significant recurring role. Kinda cartoony. Ryan himself reminds me of Steve Guttenberg in Short Circuit, combined with (this 2/3 way into series 1) a fairly traditional white saviour trope; be interesting to see whether they lean into or subvert that as it goes on. The weird quasi-threesome thing with the solider fella in Vegas seemed oddly shoe-horned into the plot; it really felt to me like there should have been some more engagement with that and the plot, otherwise it reeks a bit of edgelord writing. That said, it may well come back as an issue later on, we'll see.

The shots of Paris are lovely; spending more time there post pandemic there were definitely specific streets I recognised.


This week I also watched ITV's dramatisation of A Spy Among Friends. Based (mostly - Anna Maxwell Martin's character is an invention in order to drive the plot forward) on the true story of Kim Philby's defection from British secret services to the USSR in 1963, and starring Guy Pearce as Philby, with Damien Lewis as Nicholas Elliot, working for British secret services investigating his former colleague and good friend. Reviews have been mixed: mainly, it was disliked by the sort of lazy reviewers who resent being required to think and not having every last element of the plot expositioned and telegrqphed to death. The political rivalry between SIS and MI5 are nicely represented, as well as the (at least in 1963) inherent classism of those services (another purpose for the Mrs Thomas character). The sense of period is beautifully dome, a mix of wardrobe, set, use of what I believe to be period media for some shots, and the quality of sets. The cars are glorious - this being a real golden era for the British motor industry. Watch out for Adrian Edmondson in a real dramatic turn, very different from his earlier, comedic work.

Definitely worth catching for anyone who has an interest in depictions of either espionage in Britain in that period, or that period in Britain more generally. For me, they particularly nailed that idea of the early-mid Sixties when it finally was beginning to be the Sixties in Britain, but the fifties still loomed large, with the NHS still in its relative infancy and rationing not yet a decade over (food rationing in Britain ceased in 1954; the last item rationed was coal, which came to an end in 1958).
 

MichaelRhB

One of the Regulars
Messages
135
Location
Southern Illinois
I just signed up on the ITV website. This series looks very good and I'll be watching it in the coming days. Love this sort of stuff and I'm a big spy movie guy.

Thanks for the head's up.
 

Edward

Bartender
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23,689
Location
London, UK
I just signed up on the ITV website. This series looks very good and I'll be watching it in the coming days. Love this sort of stuff and I'm a big spy movie guy.

Thanks for the head's up.

It really is very nicely done. Hope you enjoy!

As an aside, my cynical view of Netflix has been supported by facts yet again: they have indeed cancelled 1899.

Chanced across Schitt's Creek yesterday, and am now closing in on the end of Series 2. Very funny indeed. Particularly the scene where the mother is going hysterical about a pair of lost earrings, while the husband calmly points out where they are. This made me laugh hard as it's totally the dynamic I have with Mrs Marlowe. Except I'm the hysterical one that has "lost" a cufflink (i.e. left it on the kitchen table or in the bathroom) and she's talking me down from a] not immediately ordering two new pairs online (one for spare, in case I lose 'em again...), and b] not changing my entire outfit because I'd built it around that specific accessory....
 

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