Sunday, March 31, 2013

TV Series I've Been Watching - part 14

So many new series and I haven't started watching them all and there are more still coming!



Let's start with the already described ones:

  • Doctor Who - episode six of the seventh season has just appeared. I will probably watch it tonight.
  • Torchwood - no news at all for the fifth season. The only new things about it (for me) is that a Torchood episode has 50 minutes on Starz and 60 on BBC One.
  • Criminal Minds - episodes keep piling up, but it never came up as a priority.
  • Dexter - season 8 of the series will be the last. It's official. The launch date is June 30, 2013.
  • Fringe - Fringe has ended! Finally! The whole observer invasion thing was like a stupid rehash of German occupation movies.
  • True Blood - June 16, 2013 is the release date. The trailer seems to imply something epic.
  • The Good Wife - the show seems to be oscillating between working and not working, with all the unnecessary complications that add no value to the story. Like a hard drive that develops bad sectors I expect it to fail any time now, even if I still like the series.
  • Haven - The third season is over, a fourth was announced. The ending of the third season leaves me with few expectations.
  • Falling Skies - season three will start on June 9, 2013. It's one of those that are just good and sci-fi enough to keep watching.
  • Southpark - season 17 starts on September 2013. Can't wait.
  • The Killing - still on my watch list, haven't started watching it.
  • Suits - third season is about to start. It doesn't make much sense, but I like it.
  • Breaking Bad - I was saying in the last post that the fifth season has ended. It hasn't! There is still one half left starting July 2013. This will end the show. Maybe then I will watch it all to see what happened. Reading the episode synopsis might work as well.
  • Californication - I have demoted Californication to neutral. It feels really tired. The LA back and forth talk doesn't do it for me and there doesn't seem to be any (relevant) action.
  • Beavis&Butt-head - It seems the show was quietly axed. I haven't heard anything about it for a long time.
  • Homeland - I've seen two seasons of Homeland and it's pretty cool. Season three is announced to start on September 29, 2013. I can't empathise with ANY of the characters, but I like it.
  • The Walking Dead - slow walking dead people don't really seem a threat anymore. Instead, psychopathic humans do! Oh, and Lennie James appeared as a recluse madman in the last episode, and the season three finale airs today.
  • Game of Thrones - season three premiers tonight. There are many fans of the books and series in my friend circle and I like the show so far. I still feel that it doesn't capture the feel of the books, but then again, maybe it will develop its own.
  • Mad Men - season six is to premier on April 7, 2013. I will keep watching it, because it is just great.
  • Misfits - the show has been renewed for a fifth season. I will watch it, but I don't have much hopes for it.
  • Sherlock - the third season of the series will begin probably late 2013. I liked it, even if a bit too... Moffaty? I really don't want to see more and more people acting like Doctor Who. One is enough.
  • Spartacus - Vengeance - I had hopes for this season, but it seems it's just the same thing, with a slave rebellion thrown in. It will probably have a Braveheart ending.
  • My Babysitter's a Vampire - No news of a third season, but the show has built a faithful (if childish) fan base. What, they don't sell stuff to children in Canada?
  • Continuum - the second season starts on April 21, 2013. Sci-fi cop show? Have to watch it.:)
  • Copper - the second season of this cop drama starts late 2013. I liked the show and the characters.
  • Longmire - still now date for the second season, but I liked the characters and the setting. The script is well written, too.
  • The Newsroom - my wife loves this. I will watch the second season, but I can't decide if I like it or not.
  • Arrow - I still watch this, as a superhero show with beautiful actors.
  • Beauty and the Beast - removed from my viewing list.
  • Battlestar Galactica - Blood and Chrome - there will not be more. It was a series of webisodes that were part of a pilot that no one bought. I really liked it, though.
  • Elementary - watching it, but it's not great.
  • Hatfields and McCoys - This American Civil War miniseries was filmed in Romania and stars Kevin Costner. I really wanted to see it, but didn't get around to it, yet.
  • Hit and Miss - A new show I really know nothing about. Six episodes so far.
  • Hunted - Cinemax still negotiating a second season without BBC support. Boo, BBC! Anyway, hopes are waning.
  • Parade's End - another miniseries. The trailer looks really promising and I haven't read the book. As soon as I watch it you will know.
  • Primeval - New World - I really tried to like this show, but I didn't. I removed it from my viewing list.
  • Restless - a miniseries. A young woman finds out that her mother worked as a spy for the British Secret Service during World War II and has been on the run ever since. The synopsis sounds interesting. Two episodes so far, that I have yet to watch.
  • Ripper Street - It's a bit like doctor Watson working for Lestrade, but I like the characters and the setting.
  • The Fear - A Brighton crime boss turns entrepreneur and then he goes crazy. Like mentally ill crazy. I haven't started watching this miniseries, but it might be interesting.
  • Vegas - It seems that to keep audiences happy, unreasonable dramas and conspiracies must be presented. Again I feel cheated, as I really like the show but I already see how the mass production version of the script looms its ugly head.
  • Wizards versus Aliens - there will be a second season, starting late 2013. I don't know if I will still watch it, but it's childish fun.

And now for novelties

  • Banshee - for a show I almost decided I did not like, it seems crazy that I watched all episodes so far. The basic premise is that a recently released inmate assumes the identity of a cop in a small town, where he has to battle local thugs, Serbian mobsters and the town's crime lord. The characters are just fun enough to enjoy, even if the story is totally implausible.
  • Bates Motel - A TV series based on Psycho. Haven't started watching the two episodes that aired so far.
  • Black Mirror - the second season of Black Mirror is here! Didn't watch it, yet, but probably will. There are three one hour British sci-fi stories with a moral per season.
  • Borealis - Weird pilot about a future where nations battle control over Arctic resources in a very covert way. The result, a frontier town Western set in the future, didn't convince anyone and therefore did not materialize into a series.
  • Broadchurch - Another small town cop thing? At least it is British, with David Tennant playing the main character (and cannibalizing some other former Doctor Who actors. It seems to have good production values, as well.
  • Cracked - Another Canadian cop production. Cracked follows the newly formed Psych Crimes Unit within a Canadian police department set up by a psychiatrist in partnership with the police.
  • Cult - the series centers on a journalist blogger and a production assistant, who investigate a series of mysterious disappearances that are linked to a popular television series named Cult. The bad guy is T-bag from Prison Break.
  • Do No Harm - A horrible attempt at a TV series, it features a surgeon that secretly has a split personality. A Jekyll and Hyde thing? No. Just a bad show. I removed it from my viewing list.
  • Girls - this is not a new show per se, but one I didn't watch until recently. It sounded like a smart Sex and the City, so I got around to check it out. It stars an incredibly ugly, stupid and self centred girl and three of her friends. One of them is really hot, but it couldn't save the show. Weird and ugly people that attempt to appear interesting. They are not.
  • Golden Boy - The series follows the successful, meteoric rise — from age 26 to 34 — of Walter Clark, an ambitious cop who becomes the youngest Police Commissioner in New York City history.So, yeah, a police drama again, but it seems more than the usual crap. We'll see.
  • House of Cards - I almost added a "want" status to this new series on the basis of Kevin Spacey being the lead actor alone. It is an adaptation of a previous BBC miniseries of the same name which is based on the novel by Michael Dobbs. This also lends support to the theory that the show is good. People that started watching it liked it, as well. So, all I need is to start watching it.
  • In the Flesh - Another zombie TV series! And it's British! What's even funnier is that the main character is a rehabilitated zombie Partially Deceased Syndrome sufferer. I didn't yet got "the bug" for it, but it might become a "want". I have watched two episodes so far.
  • Labyrinth - I don't know what to say about this show yet. John Hurt stars in it, it seems to involve a connection with the long lost Christian sect of Cathar and is a darma fantasy. People seem to like it well.
  • Mayday - the story of a missing May Queen teenager in a small English country village and the dirty secrets this brings up from the depths of its inhabitants. It's a British miniseries, but the viewer response has not been positive.
  • Metal Hurlant Chronicles - This is a low budget European sci-fi series based on the comic books with the same title. Only five episodes and probably there will not be a second season, but it was fun enough.
  • Monday Mornings - In the last post I was saying that I was in the mood for a good medical drama. This is it so far. Not so much medical, as ethical, though. The story revolves around the weekly meetings of all the surgeons in a prestigious hospital to discuss medical incidents. I like the actors and so far it has been a pretty solid story. A bit too melodramatic, but for an American medical drama, it's good.
  • Monsters vs. Aliens - this is a kiddie animation show based on the movie with the same name. After a mere 20 seconds of loud colourful characters smiling and talking maniacally, I stopped and deleted the file. Will not ever watch this.
  • Motive - Motive is a Canadian police procedural drama following working-class single-mom Detective Flynn (Lehman) in her investigation of crimes. Each episode also reveals the killers and victims at the start of the show, unusual in police procedural dramas. Haven't watched it yet.
  • Orphan Black - The first episode aired yesterday. It's a sci-fi drama, something to do with clones. I hope it will be good.
  • Privates - BBC One drama television series set in 1960 which follows the stories of eight privates who are part of the last intake of National Service, and their relationships with their officers and non-commissioned officers, civilian staff and families. Didn't start watching it, yet.
  • Red Widow - a housewife from Northern California whose husband, a figure in organized crime, was killed. She has to continue his work to protect her family. Don't know how good it is yet.
  • Rome - only two seasons in all, but it told a story from start to finish from the perspective of two friends, soldiers in the Roman legions. Great production values, great acting, loved the actors. At the end, even if it was a great show, I didn't feel like I was hooked and needed more, which is rare with TV series.
  • Scandal - an American political thriller television series created by Shonda Rhimes, of Grey's Anatomy fame. I fear the moment when I will present this to my wife and she might like it.
  • Seed - A comedy about a guy that donates sperm and finds himself cornered by the resulting offspring. Started badly, was clearly a cliché from the start.
  • The Americans - Set during the Cold War period in the 1980s, The Americans is the story of Elizabeth and Philip Jennings, two Soviet KGB officers posing as American citizens and a married couple. Another show waiting for my attention, but it stars Keri Russell, who I love, so I will probably watch it at some time.
  • The Blue Rose - a New Zealand crime drama television series about some lowly clerks who join forces to fight the corporate corruption that caused the death of one of their colleagues.
  • The Carrie Diaries - Wow! A TV shows based on King's horror story! Nope. It's the TV version of Sex and the City, with a teenage Carrie... the horror, the horror...
  • The Doctor Blake Mysteries - an Australian television series. Doctor Lucien Blake returns home to Ballarat in 1959 to take over his deceased father's general medical practice after an absence of 30 years. Doctor Blake is a keeper of secrets and a solver of mysteries. No data on the quality of the show yet.
  • The Following - a series about a psychopath obsessed with Poe's writings that creates a cult following of wannabe serial killers. Interesting premise and it stars Kevin Bacon, but it might fizzle.
  • Twisted - A teen with a troubled past reconnects with his two female best friends from childhood. He becomes the prime suspect when a fellow student is surprisingly found dead in her home. Didn't start watching it, but it doesn't sound great.
  • Utopia - a British conspiracy thriller that follows a small group of people who find themselves in possession of the manuscript sequel of a cult graphic novel called "The Utopia Experiments" which is rumoured to have predicted the worst disasters of the last century. This leads them to be targeted by an organisation known as 'The Network', which they must avoid to survive. Sounds interesting and has a high IMDb rating.
  • Vikings - a Canadian-Irish historical drama television series, inspired by the epic sagas about the raiding, trading, and exploring Norsemen of early medieval Scandinavia. It follows the exploits of the legendary Viking chieftain Ragnar Lodbrok and his crew and family. Sounds cool, but I didn't look at it, yet.
  • Wallander - I liked this British adaptation of a Swedish police drama. It stars Kenneth Branagh and is still placed in Sweden, even if spoken in English. It is as much a classical police inspector centred series as one can be, straightforward three seasons of three episodes each. Now, I can't say it was great, but me and the wife watched all nine episodes in about a week.
  • Star Wars - The Clone Wars (animated series) - I can't really give this a bad rating. If the show is made for children, then it's not really that awful: count Duqu and his Syth lords are being mischievous and evil, while Master Yoda and his Jedi are always kind and good. But that is what makes the show an awful experience for anyone over the age of 12. If you think about it, the movies were not that different from this, but they showed real intrigue, violence, tough choices, even grey characters like Darth Vader. While this show lasted for five seasons, there were only a few moments when they tried to show the evolution of Anakin Skywalker from a Jedi knight to a servant of the Syth, while the technology and thinking in this series was antiquated and childish. That made me stop after a season or so, I watched the last episode of the third season, didn't see an improvement and now it has been announced that the fifth season will be the last.

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