Sunday, May 10, 2015
What I've Been Watching
The 100. I barely made it through one episode. It's about a post-apocalyptic world in which 100 teenagers are sent back to Earth, following 97 years of exile due to a nuclear holocaust. If I had to choose between watching an entire season of this show or attempting to have an intelligent conversation with Cardale Jones, I would . . . still watch the show. But it wouldn't be an easy choice.
Hit the jump for a few more television series I've been watching, and feel free to leave me some suggestions.
Bloodline. Coach Taylor from Friday Night Lights is the leading man, but the guy who makes the whole show is actor Ben Mendelsohn who plays Danny Rayburn. The show revolves around a family that runs a hotel in the Florida Keys. Oldest son Danny is a criminal and lifelong screwup, second son John (Kyle Chandler) is the local sheriff, third son Kevin (Norbert Leo Butz) is the hothead, and baby of the family Meg (Linda Cardellini) is an up-and-coming lawyer. Meanwhile, the patriarch and matriarch are played by Sam Shepard and Sissy Spacek. The Netflix Original series takes a rather daring approach by giving viewers a glimpse of the season's ending in the first episode, but without context it doesn't make a ton of sense. Then the intervening episodes put the pieces of the puzzle together. (On a side note, Norbert Leo Butz is an accomplished Broadway actor who was the lead in the original Wicked cast.)
The Glades. I'm still feel out this show, a few episodes into season two. It's about a Chicago detective who gets shipped out and heads to Miami to do some crime-solving. It's definitely not a show that I can get totally wrapped up in, but it's not a bad serial to watch as a one-off when I'm looking for something to watch. Jim, the main character, starts off as a little too sarcastic and silly of a character, but the writers and directors seem to figure that out by the end of season one. A little more serious with more on the line, I'm enjoying season two a little more.
The Killing. I got a late start on this show. I kept seeing it pop up on Netflix, but I never really heard anybody talking about it. Based on a Danish series of the same name, the American version was canceled twice by AMC - after season two and three - only to be purchased by Netflix for a fourth season. It stars Mireille Enos (as Detective Sarah Linden) and Joel Kinnaman (as Detective Stephen Holder) as Seattle detectives who essentially investigate one murder (or several related murders) per season. I thought it was interesting how Linden went from a likable character to one who spiraled out of control - almost as loony as Carrie Matheson - but Holder went from a bit of a shady cop to one who sort of found his way throughout the four seasons. The murder mysteries are pretty intriguing, although I found season four's main plot to be very predictable and guessed the outcome in episode one. Outside of Breaking Bad, I think this may be one of the most compelling TV dramas I've found.
Sons of Anarchy. I discovered this show a couple years ago, and I just finished watching the seventh and final season. It follows a biker gang in California, which is eventually led by Jax Teller (Charlie Hunnam). In some ways like Breaking Bad or Dexter, you have a morally bankrupt protagonist that makes you feel guilty for rooting for him. As many shows are, this one is a bit unrealistic when you count up the bodies and realize that the cops must be extremely inept to not have made a few more arrests. Then again, I like watching movies about Superman, Thor, and Darth Vader, so who am I to judge based on realism? It's very convenient that almost all of the Sons of Anarchy's rivals are completely oblivious to impending danger, and the ending of the series wraps things up a little too cleanly for all the shenanigans that go on throughout the series. I also was not a fan of the final scene, which was a bit too cheesy. However, I do appreciate some good, old-fashioned violence, and this series has plenty of it.
What else should I watch? What are your favorite shows?