Criminal Minds: "Amplification"

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The last two weeks I got from Amazon and Target:









Now all I need is a couple of moths off to watch them all!


Friday night, my wife and I finished watching VERONICA MARS. Last night, we started WONDERFALLS. We're watching the second episode right now, and the song that served as VERONICA MARS' theme song was just played in a couple of scenes.

Just finished watching Gotham Girls, all the episodes of which are extras on the Birds of Prey DVD set.

If (like me) you've never seen these before and/or if (like me) you miss B:TAS, you really need to see these.  (Looks like they're all available on YouTube and, probably, elsewhere on the web.)  They are fantabulous!

After working my way through Babylon 5 and Crusade, I knocked off Birds of Prey (not quite as good as I remembered it) and the complete Fry & Laurie Jeeves and Wooster -- possibly the foremost example of perfect casting in the history of television.

Now it's on to a re-watch of Farscape.  I think I've mentioned this before, but Farscape is one of my two greatest "what was I thinking" oversights ever.  (The other was Futurama, so I must have some problem with the letter "F.")  I gave up on Moya and her crew after (I think) 2 episodes, only to wander in sometime toward (again, I think) the end of Season One and realize what an incredible dope I'd been.

Fortunately, I was able to catch up, and this is more-or-less my 3rd time through Season One.  Most of the rest of the series, I haven't seen since it aired. 

It's hard to re-watch the early episodes of a favorite show with an unbiased critical eye, because everything you see is influenced by what you know is coming or, at least, by your affection (or lack thereof) for the characters.  Still, it's hard now to see why Farscape didn't "click" with me right away.  So much of what I enjoyed about the show was right up there on the screen from the very beginning.  (I blame it on Episode 2 -- "I, E.T." -- that no amount of nostalgia can entirely salvage.)

Netflix has all four seasons of Farscape both on disk and streaming. They also have Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars available on disk.

I've never watched it but intend to one of these days.

USA Network reruns of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit had so many promos for Suits that I finally broke down and watched the whole season. I was glad I did; it isn't just another lawyer show. It's different in that they almost never go to court; it's about the dealmaking and office intrigue at this high-powered New York firm. And Gina Torres is wonderful.

Around New Year's, HBO released a remastered version of The Wire, formatted for today's rectangular HDTV screens. When the show was on the air, it was formatted for the more square TV screen. About two years in, they could have switched to the new format but chose not to, so that all episodes from all seasons would be consistent.

Anyway, to trumpet this change, HBO reran all five seasons of The Wire in week-long marathon across three of its channels. Since I had seen only a few of the episodes, and never more than two in a row, I took the opportunity to try it. However, not being able to commit to watching 600-plus hours of one show at a time, I got through maybe a half-dozen episodes, but resolved to watch the rest.

So, so far, I've completed the first and second seasons, and I'm hooked.

It IS different than your average cop show. My son was in the room when an episode showed two detectives reopening a cold case, of a woman who had been shot and killed in her apartment some six months prior. Being more diligent than the original investigators, our two detectives found a key piece of evidence -- the fatal bullet, embedded in a refrigerator door -- and with that, calculated where the shooter must have stood and found a spent shell casing, all the while saying one certain word over and over again. (See here, but it's definitely NOT safe for work.)

The episode ended, however, without them actually arresting anybody.

My son asked, "They didn't catch the bad guy?"


"How many shows do you have to watch before they catch the bad guy?"

"I don't know," I said. "All of them?" 

You pretty much do have to watch all of them. And even then, the resolution is anything but neat.

Also, it doesn't paint a pretty picture of cops as moral exemplars. The rank-and-file detectives seem to be good at what they do, and some of them even care about doing it well, but everybody above the rank of lieutenant is a career-minded bureaucrat, and some of the lieutenants and sergeants are, too. And the second season, which focused on the port, made a grand statement about the dockworkers and their feeling that their way of life, and means of making a livelihood, is slipping away, leaving them befuddled about how they can exist.

It is a little dated. The whole first season investigation hung on the police wiretapping payphones being used by drug runners, which made sense in 2002; today, there wouldn't be any payphones around to wiretap. 

Looking forward to season three.

I watched the first season and a half of Shameless while on vacation last week and since then. I'm not sure who has Showtime (I don't; I'll be watching the rest via Netflix), but I would recommend this series to a select group of people. I have good friends who love it and who I can safely discuss it with, and I have some friends who I hope never watch it because they will cite it as moral decay at its worst.

As the name implies, this is a good, compelling story of a family living in the slums with a father who knows no bounds of moral depravity. The levels of this depravity vary amongst his kids: the eldest who is doing her best to hold everyone together and in the house, his genius oldest son who takes exams for people for money, one son who is having an affair with the owner's husband where he works, a very smart daughter who seems out of place in her circumstances, one son who is incredibly jaded and is constantly melting his action figures or torturing small animals, and the youngest son who is about a year old and is clearly not his! His neighbors are like family to his family, and from there is a weird, complex spider-web of interaction with several other people in the neighborhood.

The cast includes William H. Macy and Joan Cusack, plus a lot of other people who look familiar but whose names don't sound familiar.

If you are a fan of comics like Preacher, 100 Bullets, and Fables (I can hear Conservative Bill Willingham cursing at me from here!), I would highly recommend this series. Give it one or two episodes is all I say. You will probably know within the first ten minutes whether or not this series is for you.

The best of all is that, beneath the entitlement and disgust of the "patriarch"'s role, there is a real heart to this series. It's one that is similar to The Sopranos, Big Love, and Dexter, in that you find yourself rooting for the bad guys. (I imagine the same can be said of Breaking Bad, but I haven't seen that one.)

Wandering Sensei: Moderator Man said:

It's one that is similar to The Sopranos, Big Love, and Dexter, in that you find yourself rooting for the bad guys. (I imagine the same can be said of Breaking Bad, but I haven't seen that one.)

Breaking Bad has you rooting for the bad guy (who "broke" bad very slowly) against the worse guys. I think you would like the show.

The Soviet spy drama The Americans is so well done that you find yourself sympathizing with the spies pretending to be Americans and their kids. It's not so much that you want them to succeed as that you don't want anything bad to happen to them.

Since I'm reading Showcase Presents: Sea Devils I'm watching an episode of Sea Hunt with Lloyd Bridges at Internet Archive. I figure the comic was likely influenced by the show, and I've not seen it before. The page says the episode is in the public domain.

This post displaced the thread The Earth-44 Timeline, Appendix Six: The Legacy of the Batman from the homepage.

Working my way thru my Arrow DVDs. Right now I'm in the middle of Season 2.

I like this show.  A lot.  I really, really do.  I love the fact that it's so unapologetically pulpy. It knows what it is and it owns it.  And, without a doubt, the best choreographed fight scenes on TV, ever.

But there's still some genre conventions that you just have to live with.

For example, if my sister ever walked up to me in a latex catsuit and a domino mask, I'm pretty sure my reaction would be "What the hell are you wearing,Sis?", not "Who are you?"

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