what are you watching? (tv shows)

hawtdawg

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Cider with Rosie (2015) was quite good. It's a one-off BBC production. I'm currently re-watching The Flame Trees of Thika (1981), a seven part series, and recommend it.
 
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Ceewan

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Fear The Walking Dead was really a lot better than I thought it would be. A little slow going as they built up some momentum to the very decent finale.

The Good Wife is back, great show and I hardly recognize it as they have let the series evolve and grow in different directions. Not a fan of their network PC attitude and politics but those writers really got their game on. Easily in the top fifteen shows on TV nowadays, in my humble opinion (and I am not a fan of lawyer shows). Michael J. Fox shines in his appearances, best televesion role he has had since Family Ties (and the character is a little similar too).

Homeland has also returned but I haven't seen it yet. There sure is a lot of material for them to work with, let us hope that the writing holds up. Some series tend to go astray after a few seasons of success. Update: Great 1st episode! and of course taking advantage of current world affairs. Now I may not be a fan of exploiting serious real world issues for profit but a good story is a good story. As long as it is all about the entertainment value things are easier to overlook.
 
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Ceewan

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"The Shannara Chronicles" is an upcoming show which I will give a try, even though it is being shown on MTV (which has consistently shown low quality forms of entertainment, IMO). It premieres January 5th. The series is based on the second book of the Shannara series by Terry Brooks "The Elfstones of Shannara". I had read many of the series and Terry Brooks (who approved of the TV adaptation) is a very talented storyteller. This is the first time I have heard of one of his books being shown on screen and I would say it is about time. I am a little pissed off they are starting with the second book but I will admit that it is better than his first novel. If you get the chance give this one a try, that is if you like the "sword and sorcery" genre. Personally I thought it was a much better series than Tolkiens "Lord of The Rings" and a lot easier to read.
 

Ceewan

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Just finished watching the last episode of Ash VS Evil Dead and if you get the oppurtunity to watch that series then please do. Of course it helps if you are a horror fan and have watched the original movies but either way, it is the role Bruce Cambell was born to play and the show is based on the cheap indie comedy/horror series that made him famous. This is produced by the original creator of the series the now famous Sam Raimi who wrote/directed the first movie way back in 1981.
 

Ceewan

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So I finished watching the first three episodes of ‘The Shannara Chronicles’ and MTV managed to not quite completely ruin it so I will likely watch a few more episodes to see if they complete the travesty they started or overcome its' failings. This is MTVs' most expensive undertaking to date and it would be a shame to see it fail. Personally I can only imagine that Terry Brooks was either hard up for money or acclaimation to allow this script adapted from his novel. The acting is almost as bad as the casting but neither are as bad as the writing. True to MTVs' past they hired a bunch of "pretty boys" and "flat chested tomboys" to be in the cast not to mention sexualizing scenes that were never meant to be sexualized. You would think someone in "the business" would have an apreciation for acting talent but the few actors of note only have small roles (and with the writing they could only be happy about that).

It has been some years since I read the "Elfstones of Shannara", which this is loosely adapted from so I can't, and wouldn't if I could, point out the inaccuracies. It was a good read however and I read the book more than twice. The first book of the series is "The Sword of Shannara" and almost every book after that is centered around that book in one manner or another, which is why I think they should have started with that. I actually read the last of the original trilogy first "The Wishsong of Shannara" because is was suggested to me by my dyslexic cousin and it was the only book I had ever known him to read and without doubt the best of the three. So if you get a chance try giving Terry Brooks' original series a read.
 

Ceewan

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I don't watch a lot of British tv, not that I have anything that much against it (except the political correctiveness that has invaded the media to the point of absurdity but that is in the states as well), but I thought I would give this a try:

Stan Lee's Lucky Man on Sky1 tv starring James Nesbitt is a winner so far in my book. I adore Stan Lee (even though he takes and gets a lot of credit that is more justly shared with others) and it is nice to see him seriously involved in creating again. Of course at his age (93 and counting) it is nice to see him just walking around and not six feet under. Regardless it is a fairly novel idea that seems as so far to be written well so I suggest giving this one a look see before Sky1 realize they have something special here (and proceed to figure out how to ruin it in an attempt to improve upon it). I watched the first two episodes (out of a total of a 10 episode season) and enjoyed them both.
 
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hawtdawg

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Just finished watching the recently concluded six part BBC production of War and Peace. The series failed to convey the various subtleties and background causes of many of the personal dramas, and gave only a partial exploration of the historic events which overwhelm many of the characters (internal Russian political and social crises, events in Europe surrounding Napoleon and his military machinations). It was also disturbing to see British actors, speaking with their marked accents, delivering dialogue meant to be representative of early 19th century Russia. Many of the actors were simply miscast and out of place. Despite these many and varied faults, I still enjoyed it very much. Lily James and Aisling Loftus are two of the most beautiful and talented actresses of this or any era, and as the saying goes, I'd pay to watch them read the phone book. On a personal note, I read War and Peace one dismal, dreary winter many years ago during a time of prolonged depression in my life, and although it's not a book that offers great inspiration, I found much comfort and consolation in getting lost in all the individual and historical twists and turns in the story. Have always been grateful to Tolstoy for offering that, and highly recommend the book to everyone.
 
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Ceewan

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Just finished watching the recently concluded six part BBC production of War and Peace.


A British (and British cast!) adaptation of a Russian epic novel about one of the greatest Frenchman to ever live. You really do not have to be European to see something wrong with that. Still, I really loved the review. My brother is a big fan of War and Peace, constantly telling me to read it. Me, I am a big fan of the Frenchman Bonaparte, who I believe is one of the most misrepresentated figures in history. But it is the victors who write history, is it not? Still, I have been wanting badly to read the novel, I am a big fan of Tolstoy too. Tolstoy lived during the period of the French Revolution, had visited France before it, was a Russian aristocrat and had served in the Russian army. A great background for writing that novel. Reading War and Peace is on my bucket list. Still considering whether or not to watch the documentary though....


On a sidenote: Vikings has not dissappointed so far. Hard to believe they can live up to their previous standards but they do so easily and this series is one of the best on tv, right up there with the ranks of Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead. Speaking of which, the The Walking Dead has also returned and of course, it is fucking great. This is also the last season of the Good Wife which I am okay with for some reason but will not miss an episode of its' last hurrah. Suits has returned and is also a very good show that seems to just get better (granted, there has always been room to improve but the acting has always been good if the writing has not). Enjoying its' fifth season and see why it was already renewed for a sixth. Pretty Little Liars is also on what was supposed to be its' last season although that is possibly up in the air now I hear. I mainly just watch it because I think the three lead actreses are hot but I admit to getting caught up in the story. (Interesting to note; Troian Bellasario from Pretty Little Liars is engaged to Patrick Adams from Suits...lucky guy).

I don't watch a lot of tv nowadays, most of the new shows haven't shown any promise in their premise and I have passed on even looking at them. If I do come across something new I like, I will share it though. Always love hearing from others as well on what they enjoy watching. Feel free to share people, even if you like "All My Children" (is that still on?), and want to rant on it, go ahead. That is what this thread is for.
 
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Ceewan

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Bates Motel is back and while I don't know where they are going with this I do know one thing for sure, there will be murder....in spades. Great show, glad they renewed it but being in the cast can be a short time job.

If you have been missing it Better Call Saul is also back. While not on the same level as Breaking Bad it still is very well done. Johnathan Banks has been gracing the silver screen for 40 years and he has never been better.
 

genki_desu

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I just started watching Game of Thrones. I'm on season 1 episode 2 and I like it so far.
 
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Ceewan

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I just started watching Game of Thrones. I'm on season 1 episode 2 and I like it so far.


Awesome. I wish I could watch that series again with fresh eyes but you only get that opportunity once.
 
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hawtdawg

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It's been a sad few months for fans of British period dramas. This past Christmas brought us the final episode of Downton Abbey, and Friday night saw the end of Mr Selfridge. That entire series featured some great performances by Jeremy Piven, Amanda Abbington, and Katherine Kelly. While I preferred The Paradise over Mr Selfridge, the latter was nonetheless entertaining and always well executed.
 
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CoolKevin

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Awesome. I wish I could watch that series again with fresh eyes but you only get that opportunity once.

not sure I want to watch it again with fresh eyes, too confusing for me, I might watch it again soon, so I can look at more of the minor characters, and see how they fit in later
 
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Ceewan

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not sure I want to watch it again with fresh eyes, too confusing for me, I might watch it again soon, so I can look at more of the minor characters, and see how they fit in later

Confusing? Well, it is based on a series of novels so the story is pretty linear. However they tell the story from multiple viewpoints which many authors are fond of doing. This isn't really new in cinema though, any daytime soap opera does the same thing and has been for decades. The only thing I hate about the series is each season is too damn short! I never had any problem keeping up with the storyline though. Not sure exactly who qualifies as a minor character because they all seem to ham it up and anything can happen at any minute to turn everything upside down. Really looking forward to this season (can't you tell?)

New season 6 trailer:

 
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hawtdawg

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I always hold your opinions in high regard, Ceewan, so based on your recommendation am currently downloading Game of Thrones S01-05 from KAT, and will start watching it in the coming days (unless you suggest reading the books first).
 
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Ceewan

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I always hold your opinions in high regard, Ceewan, so based on your recommendation am currently downloading Game of Thrones S01-05 from KAT, and will start watching it in the coming days (unless you suggest reading the books first).


Personally, I would suggest taking my opinions with a "grain of salt" but that might sound ungrateful. Instead I will just say thanks.

I have never read the books, my brother has but we don't talk much. I have always found that you will be disappointed in either the cinema or the book, as you will always compare the two. If you are intent (or just interested) in reading the books then I would suggest doing it after watching the series. Books always go into more detail than can be covered cinematically, (thus most people will usually say "I preferred the book").

Game of Thrones is with little doubt, one of the best series ever found on tv. I am not sure I like it more than "Breaking Bad" or "The Walking Dead" but that may just be my personal taste in cinema. No tv series matches the amount of work that goes into Game of Thrones from a cinematic standpoint though, the sets and costumes are worthy of a high budget film and that is each and every episode. Also of note are the locations used in the shooting of the series, which span several locations across Europe from Belfast to Croatia to Spain (just to name a few). No other series I know of has ever even attempted to do anything like it in the history of cinema. Of course the budget of Game of Thrones just may be the largest in history too.
 
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Ceewan

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So I am trying "Gotham", because so many seem to like it but so far I have only struggled through the first episode. I will give it the old college try but no promises. I have a lot of preconceptions as I actually used to read Batman and Detective comics as a youngling, so I am going to be fairly easy to disappoint here. I hate when they rewrite the history that was originally set in pen (doesn't matter if they did so in the comics as much but for some reason it annoys the hell out of me when they do it in cinema). Maybe it is because I have seen so many novels massacred on film before. I dunno.

What I am giving a chance is 11.22.63. I was never a big Kennedy fan so I didn't think I would be interested in this because frankly, I don't care who killed JFK. But there is a twist of originality in the concept and it is based on a Stephen King novel so I decided to check out the pilot. Interesting enough for me to continue watching more and a decent performance by journeyman James Franco too. I haven't read the book but I used to adore reading Stephen King, in his earlier days. One of the most naturally gifted storytellers I have ever come across, even if his genre is horror. Hollywood loves him and for good reason. I don't know if Stephen King could tell a boring story if his life depended on it.
 
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hawtdawg

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For those interested, a longer, more detailed, and more faithful 1972 BBC production of War and Peace is available on KAT. It compares favorably to the recently concluded series I mentioned earlier in this thread, and stars Anthony Hopkins. Joe Bob says check it out! (Anyone else remember Joe Bob Briggs?)
 
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