Telly Talk (#2) – 8th Sept 2017

As I’m sure I have mentioned in the past, I have a very short attention span so I can’t really copiously consume episodes of TV shows like we are encouraged to do in today’s society. Well, not unless I am extremely invested in a show, and that is rare. However, I have been watching a couple shows since the last time I made a Telly Talk post; these are: That 70’s Show, Suits, Game of Thrones and Insecure.

That 70’s Show

I had always heard about this show growing up but I had never really been drawn to it. It was recently recommended to me and I gave it a try. I am only around 5 episodes in, and while I’m not exactly blown away, I do think it’s an enjoyable show. It’s ironic as it was intended to be a throwback to the 70’s when it began airing in the 90s, and now two decades later I’m watching it. The show is character-driven rather than plot-driven which is typical of a sitcom, and while the characters are still being developed in these initial episodes, I’m not particularly drawn to any one character, and I’m still yet to get a belly laugh moment from the show. But it is still early days, and I do think it has the potential to make me laugh out loud so I’ll stick with it a little while longer.

Suits

I have a funny relationship with this show. I started it around this time last year as you can see from this post. But I haven’t got very far with it. This is not because I do not enjoy the show, as I really do. I find it very gripping and entertaining; especially an episode I watched recently in which Harvey and Mike bonded and let their hair down together, something which was unexpected but 100% necessary at that point and time in the series. I am just not a fan of 45 minute long episodes as I can’t bear stay watching for that long. However, I do make exceptions if the episode was particularly interesting. For that reason. I tend to watch the show in bursts, and I can go away for months and come back. But, pitifully, I am only now just coming to the end of Season 2, and I have 6 more to go. Wish me luck! At this rate, I should be caught up by the year 2020!

Game of Thrones

I succumbed to the mainstream and started watching Game of Thrones a couple of months ago. I do enjoy it and it is gripping and unlike any show I’ve watched, however, once again the episodes are very long. Though, in the show’s defense a lot of the time I find myself so engrossed that when I find myself at the end of an episode I’m shocked that an hour has passed. So much happens in a single episode that you feel like you got your time’s worth. This is what I need to be happening if I’m going to spend an hour watching a show. I don’t want suspense suspense suspense only for nothing to happen! The show can be gory at times, but it doesn’t take away from my overall enjoyment of the show. Although I can already tell it will take me forever to catch up. 😩

Insecure

I’m a fan of this show. I can gladly say that I am up to date! Probably because, while it isn’t a sitcom, the episodes are only half an hour long. Now that’s what I’m talking about! The show is definitely more explicit both in language and sexual content in its current second season, and the choices that the characters are making this time around are very sketchy and questionable, but makes for an intersesting storyline. However, with only one episode left, I am very interested to see how the writers will tie all of the loose ends together as there are plenty of questions I have that need answering. The most important being what kind of miracle will it take to bring Issa and Lawrence together again? Because right now they seem very irreconcilable!

 

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What I’ve Been Watching (#1)

Good morning/afternoon/evening, and welcome to this brand new feature that I’m trying out on the site. Since, evidently, I am not the best at putting out regular content, I have found it easier to combine several topics into a single post. So rather than making a single post for every show/movie I’ve been watching lately, I will just make periodical posts about groups of things I’ve been watching.

Currently, TV-wise, I have been watching an eclectic selection of shows; Orange is the New Black, Arrested Development, Atlanta and Suits.

OITNB:

I am extremely late to this show and I’m not completely caught up yet, but I’m midway through the third season. I have to say I see why the show has been hyped up so much. It definitely lives up to it. I love how diverse the show is and how we get to see the backstory of a lot of the characters. I also love how convincingly portrayed the characters are; they don’t seen unrealistic or forced. The character dynamics and camaraderie is great which makes for, what seems seems to be, an authentic representation of a woman’s prison. My only criticism is, and I know so many people have raised this issue already, but Piper’s character is a bit underwhelming to be considered as the main protagonist. I feel like the writers of the show are aware of this as meta commentary often slips into the remarks of some of the secondary characters in regards to her portrayal as the white, privileged, middle-class female who is obsessed with wanting everyone to think she is a good person. I think they did start to improve this by developing the characters surrounding her and making sure we got to know all of their backstories equally, so they did make up for it. On another note, I just wanted to say that the ‘Vee’ character was an abysmal character, and I’m glad she is no longer in the show. Her presence was putting a dampener on the whole dynamic of the show, in my opinion. But the good thing about this show is the fact that it has a rotating cast, which is reflective of the environment it is set in. Prisoners will all have different sentence lengths so it allows for characters to enter and exit the show regularly.

 

Arrested Development:

There are two things I like about this show. I like the mockumentary style of the show; the narration, the following each different character’s daily activities and the camerawork. As a side note; I’m not sure whether it’s intentional but I’ve noticed that the microphone is visible in shot in several scenes in the show. Either way, it adds to the style.

The second thing I like about the show is the ironic brand of humour; a style we would later see in shows like Parks and Recreation and Archer. I love the absurd situations the character always seem to find themselves in. The type of situations you wouldn’t even bother explaining because you know the other person wouldn’t believe you. Another thing that I like about the show is that since I began watching Archer before Arrested Development, I couldn’t get over the fact that Jessica Walter didn’t change her voice at all for her character, Malory Archer, in the series.

 

Atlanta:

Although it’s a brand new show, Atlanta already has that atmospheric feel of a show you’ve lived with for a while; the feeling that you get when you are truly transported into the environment of the show because it is effortlessly characterised. I find this a lot in shows and movies where, objectively, not a lot happens plot-wise, but yet you leave feeling like you know and can relate to the characters a little better. This show is one of them. Donald Glover is great as Earn, a hard done by father of a young daughter, who lives with his child’s mother, although they are separated. The show follows Earn as he tries to manage his rapper cousin Paperboi, after he scores an unexpected underground hit. I love how the show balances comedic elements with a serious undertone. It’s raised questions about society’s attitude towards mental health, as well as the struggles that come with working in a low paid job while having to provide for those around you. Glover has really come a long way from his Community days.

 

Suits:

An instant favourite of mine, Suits is a witty legal dramedy which follows Mike, a formal professional exam scammer (he would use his natural talent for retaining knowledge to take exams for people for money), who finds himself in the wrong place at the right time, and manages to score a job at a top law firm. But the condition is that he must keep it under wraps that he doesn’t actually have a law degree. Under the wing of the pseudo-self absorbed, Harvey Spector, Mike must navigate his way around the law, but on the other side of the table.  All in all the show is a great watch; it’s biggest asset for me is that it is fast moving and doesn’t get stagnant. It keeps you on your toes, and therefore keeps you entertained. I’m still on the first season, but as of yet, I have no complaints about the show.

 

I haven’t really been watching many films lately, although I did watch one earlier today;

Fargo:

I’m going to say from the jump that I’m a huge fan of the way the film juxtaposes the violence of the criminals, with the genuine niceness of people of the suburb. Had this movie been written any other way, it would definitely be mentally scarring. The acting is impeccable, the accents are endearing and the movie is a gem. a definite new favourite for me.

That just about wraps up the first edition of ‘What I’ve Been Watching’, you’ll have to keep watching to see whether I continue this series, though.