Criminal Minds: "Amplification"

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I just finished watching the 2109 BBC adaptation of The War of the Worlds. I know it took liberties from the book, but I really enjoyed this version. The photography is great. The actors all perform well. The Martian walkers are very well realized. The depiction of the red weed is reminiscent of images of the COVID-19 virus. The first two episodes were better than the third and final, though. 

My neighborhood is currently under a boil water advisory due to a main break on Tuesday afternoon. The school where my wife works is in the next town over, and they are unconnectedly also under an advisory. The scenes in the show depicting possibly contaminated water really hit me as I was watching.

I said that the walking machines look very good, but the Martians themselves are not quite as well done when seen in full. They are quite frightening when introduced bit by bit, though. 

I'd recommend this version over the Spielberg/Cruise version.

Thanks for making us (me) aware of the BBC War of the Worlds (2019). I'll have to keep looking for it.

I found it on Apple TV+, but I think it came in through AMC's streaming service.

BONANZA: Episodes are coming in faster than I can watch them! Tracy is enjoying them, too, so I'd been saving them to watch with her, but last night she told me she'd rather watch Dark Shadows along with Rob's discussion, so I may pick up the pace and visit the Ponderosa without her.

Finally making our way through the less-than-impressive final season of Orange is the New Black. It's not terrible, but so many series start off strong and, before you know it, a fridge gets nuked over a shark and Bobby Ewing's in the shower.

ClarkKent_DC said:

I've always held the view that it's my civic duty as an informed citizen to watch things like presidential and vice presidential debates and State of the Union addresses.

And what about "town hall" meetings? :)

Last night, I finished the 8-part Canal+/Fox 2019 War of the Worlds. This one takes place in modern day in France and England. Gabriel Byrne and Elizabeth McGovern are the big stars, with Ty Tenant, Stephen Campbell Moore, and a bunch of French actors I didn't recognize. There's about a 60/40 split between English and French dialogue. Some of the characters were living pretty miserable lives before the alien attack, so it's sometimes hard to sympathize with them. This free adaptation reminds me more of The Walking Dead than anything else, maybe Fear the Walking Dead, at that. There are dead bodies all over the place, reminding me of my uncle's stories of France after D-Day.

If the aliens are ever said to be Martians, I missed it. The walking machines here are man-sized but not humanoid in shape. They very much resemble Spot from Boston Dynamics. In many shots they appear to be a practical effect and not CGI.

In episode three, there's a Nick Cave song that has a jarring effect, as all the music in the previous episodes had been instrumental. The song appears again in episode five, and again seems out of place. 

Also in episode five, we finally see the meteorite, and it struck me as if they inserted it here because the production realized they'd forgotten to include it in the first episode.

This adaptation, to me, is dreary and drags on, and, when we get to the end of episode eight, there's a cliffhanger to carry us into the second season. Really? Also, the cliffhanger revelation made me laugh out loud as I watched the show by myself. Again, really?

If you think The Walking Dead is too cheerful, you might enjoy this version of War of the Worlds. Again, I would recommend the BBC adaptation, flawed as it is, over this one. I may not be back for season two.

BONANZA: In the episode we wathced last nigh, the Civil War hasn't broken out yet, but tensions between the North and South have reached Virginia City.

...of course the reason for the war was not mentioned.

An episode we watched recently was a cornucopia of '60s TV actors, including Jack Lord (Hawaii Five-O), Mark Allen (Dark Shadows), Edward Platt (Get Smart) and a few others... all in the same episode!

We finished the first season for the second time a couple of days ago. When we originally recorded these, we missed about half of the first season episodes. After we were well into season two, we started icking up some of the first season episodes we had missed. Now we're caught up with those ande are moving into season two... for the second time.

ClarkKent_DC said:

I've always held the view that it's my civic duty as an informed citizen to watch things like presidential and vice presidential debates and State of the Union addresses.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

And what about "town hall" meetings? :)

Within reason. I've already voted, so I don't have to watch any of it until Election Night. (... er, Election Week).

We recorded both, then watched the first half hour of so of each.

There's another one coming up Thursday (maybe), which we'll probably watch out of morbid curiosity. (We;ve already voted, too.) We'll watch as much as we can stand, then likely switch over to that special episode of West Wing we recorded but haven't watched yet.

Yesterday we intended to watch the 31st "Tree House of Horror" episode of The Simpsons, but it's been delayed until next month.

We recorded both town halls, although I watched the Biden town hall live. The other one is likely in the pile of "homework" -- stuff we've recorded that we think we "should" watch but haven't. 

We saw the special episode of The West Wing (Stephen Colbert had some of the cast and creator Aaron Sorkin on his show ahead of it and they swore up, down and sideways it's NOT a "reunion"). I noted on Facebook that since both town halls and the West Wing special all launched on Thursday, people could choose which presidential reality they wanted. 

As for the special itself, I'll say it's everything you love about The West Wing, if you love it. But it also incorporates everything that's wrong with it. (Should we have a separate discussion about it? I'm game, if anybody else is.)

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