Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Sly Boots » Sun Jul 03, 2022 6:35 pm

Stranger Things S4

Watched the finale now (in two sittings, because, like, over two hours!), and I have to say that's how you make a season of great television. Perhaps it's recency bias, but it may even be my favourite season - by humanising the villain and giving them a full arc that also tied into everything else we've seen to this point was genius, and a big reason why this season is such a success. Impartially maybe the first season is better (but I'll swear to my dying day this was miles better than S2 or S3), but either way it was a brilliant roller-coaster ride.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Raid » Sun Jul 03, 2022 8:05 pm

I haven't finished the season yet, I've seen up to episode 7 which just did a fantastic job of tying what I thought were disparate plot threads together. But up until this point I was actually a little disappointed. I think it's mostly to do with the theming; season 3 (which I re-watched a few weeks back) was based on 80s family adventure films, and wielded those tropes masterfully. Season 4 however switched more towards supernatural horror films, which isn't a genre I've ever been that interested in, so I'm probably missing tropes or references. There've always been horror elements in this series, I just think they leaned a bit too heavily on them. I also didn't much like some of the character reworking they did; Jonathan's now a bit of a wastrel and Robin's developed a whole load of nervous quirks that she never displayed in 3. I suppose in the latter case they had to differentiate her from Nancy a bit given that they've shared a lot of scenes this year, but it feels a little forced.

I may actually replace my usual saturday movie night with the finale this week.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Animalmother » Tue Jul 05, 2022 9:39 am

Finished the 2 hour special last night and really enjoyed it and the season as a whole. Very much a horror this time rather than a scifi or kids having fun adventures.

Anyone else notice the 80's movie props?...
Spoiler
Rambo knives on the spears, Conan the Barbarian sword in the arena, Red Dawn outfits on the older kids and the Terminator shotgun blasting from the nightclub scene. I'm sure there was a ton more I missed.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Animalmother » Sat Jul 09, 2022 1:04 am

Last episode of The Boys S3 is out and its great, just a shame we'll have to wait another year before there's more. Some of the best TV thats been on in ages.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Raid » Sat Jul 09, 2022 8:28 pm

The Boys

As much as I enjoyed the finale, I think it peaked a little earlier in the season. It's not quite as good as season 2, but that was a high bar to jump. My comments from the previous page stand; I think it's gone a little too serious, which isn't exactly unsuitable given what happens during this season, but I miss the end credits soundtracked by Billy Joel.

Stranger Things 4

Again, my comments from above stand, but the finale is exactly what it needed to be, and it lifted the season as a whole. For what it's worth, I really liked the longer episode run times, and think the two and a half hour finale worked extremely well. Given that TV's arguably more effective than cinema these days (I'd rather have ten hours of character building per year than two, and I think a good creative team can accomplish just as much with a TV budget as feature films can), I can really see this becoming a trend for prestige series.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Mantis » Sat Jul 09, 2022 8:51 pm

Raid wrote:
Sat Jul 09, 2022 8:28 pm
The Boys

As much as I enjoyed the finale, I think it peaked a little earlier in the season. It's not quite as good as season 2, but that was a high bar to jump. My comments from the previous page stand; I think it's gone a little too serious, which isn't exactly unsuitable given what happens during this season, but I miss the end credits soundtracked by Billy Joel.
Didn't get a chance to respond to your previous comment when you responded to my positive view on the season at that point, but now that the season has concluded I am inclined to agree with you. Overall I thought it was a fairly great build up but the final episode was a bit of a come down from what it seemed to be leading to. And the parallels with real American politics have been a bit too on the nose, regardless of how much of a parody it is, by the season finale it all just felt a bit too grim and real for me to get as much of a kick out of it as in earlier episodes/seasons. Just knowing how polarising the real world that it is portraying has been and the suffering caused as a result of that, plus the arguably rocky future the country faces as it deals with the ongoing fallout of everything, I just wasn't as entertained by being faced with it in the show.

Still a great season overall though. When it focused on the characters themselves it was really excellent.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Sly Boots » Sat Jul 09, 2022 9:53 pm

Mentioned this on Discord last night with our D&Ders, but I'm currently really enjoying Drive to Survive on Netflix.

This is coming from someone who has no real interest in F1 the sport - my dad is a fan and I've played a couple of videogames so I'm reasonably familiar with many of the drivers - but was pretty much instantly hooked by the drama as portrayed and the human element of getting to know the lesser-famed drivers and what motivates them.

Apparently the drama of some of the moments is a bit overplayed compared to how things actually played out during the season, but it's still all good fun. You become really engrossed by one of the worst teams in the sport get within touching distance of a high finishing position, only to have it snatched away at the last moment. I'm definitely pulling for team Haas now :lol:

Highly recommended, for fans of the sport or not.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Raid » Sun Jul 10, 2022 5:33 am

The issue's not so much that drama is overplayed, it's that some of it is largely fictitious. Pretty much every time the show suggests that Ricciardo has a rivalry that gets nasty with another driver for example, it's just made up, as he's one of the most amiable sportsmen alive. There are just so many soundbites they can use to justify their storylines; much of the anger you hear from the in-cockpit radio messages is just adrenaline and exertion.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Snowy » Sun Jul 10, 2022 10:08 am

On the flip, you do get a good deal more insight into what life in the F1 paddock is really like, unlike the sterile corporate soundbites that get pumped out in the TV coverage.

I believe they have been told to dial back the tabloid element for future seasons, the narrative and fake rivalries really are not necessary.
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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Raid » Sun Jul 10, 2022 10:58 am

Indeed. It's certainly not all fake, and I don't want to sound like I don't like the programme as a whole, as it's well made and they get a lot of good access to the teams and personnel that you don't really get anywhere else. However this isn't just my opinion; Max Verstappen refused to take part in the 2021 season show for this sort of thing and I can understand why. In previous years they seemed to want to paint one driver in a rivalry as a villain, and it's just never that clear cut. I think he felt that's how they'd portray him.

Thankfully it sounds like he's taking part in the 2022 season show.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Animalmother » Tue Jul 12, 2022 3:45 pm

Started season 3 of The Orville. It feels like most of the silliness has been dropped and it's taking itself a wee bit too serious now. It's still a good show but I want more of Bortus growing a mustache and discovering smoking.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Drarok » Tue Jul 12, 2022 4:00 pm

I didn't enjoy the
Spoiler
magic hand-wavy episode with the hallucinations
felt like absolutely nothing happened that whole time.
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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Raid » Wed Jul 13, 2022 8:01 pm

I posted this in the SNW thread, but figured I'd come back and post a review for people who don't want to brave a thread full of spoilers.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

I genuinely think this has been the strongest first season of any Star Trek show. There are a couple of duff episodes, but that's still a hit rate of 80%. Every Star Trek show from TNG through to Enterprise took two years to find its feet, with the odd good episode in there, and both Discovery and Picard have been miserable failures. I'm throwing The Orville in there too. Strange New Worlds hits the ground running and mostly keeps that momentum until the absolutely brilliant finale. The writing's been fairly strong, it doesn't replace good storytelling (...or characterisation ...or really any semblance of common sense) with a visual effects budget, it's positive without being overbearing, and it has a fantastic cast. Anson Mount's Pike is absolutely in the running for replacing the TNG-era Picard as my favourite Star Trek captain.

If you get chance to watch it, it's absolutely worthwhile. I said after the first episode that it felt like the return of the franchise I grew up on, but I didn't want to be too hasty. I wasn't wrong.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Raid » Sun Jul 17, 2022 8:04 pm

Moon Knight

This surprised me a little. I was prepared for it to be another run-of-the-mill Marvel series featuring a character I hadn't heard of and had little interest in, but it's quite a unique story for the MCU. I didn't catch a single reference to any other MCU property (remarkable for a modern Disney franchise), and it focuses entirely on ancient Egyptian mythology. There's not some twist where it all turns out to be aliens, nor does it try to loosely connect it to the real world as in Thor - there are gods, the gods grant humans powers, and there's an actual afterlife. End of.

I think there's been a lot said about Oscar Issac's British accent, and while it leans quite heavily into the slang, I don't think it's nearly as offensive as I was preparing for. Issac's pretty good throughout, though I suspect the Marc character will grate on some, as the voice Issac puts on for him is warbley and a bit snivelling. The rest of the cast are inoffensive but unremarkable. The voice acting and designs of the gods were quite enjoyable (I particularly loved the animation for the hippo-headed Taweret).

I've had a fair amount of resistance to feeling over-saturated with Marvel stuff over the years, but even I've started losing interest recently. This hasn't exactly reinvigorated my interest in the franchise, but it's a step in the right direction.

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Re: Good TV (aka, the TV series spamthread), the second series

Post by Achtung Englander » Mon Jul 18, 2022 1:20 pm

The Offer (Paramount+, watched on the high seas ;) )

I really enjoyed this. It is about the making of The Godfather. Some liberties with history are taken (only a few) but overall they got the main beats correct. I listened to Coppela's directors commentary for The Godfather and most of the interesting stories are captured in the show. The people were simply amazing from Miles Teller to Bob Evans to the fantastic person that was Charles Bluhdorn. I would love to have seen that man in action.

As Larry David would say, pretty pretty good.

7/10
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