Tuesday, December 06, 2011

TV talk

Stuff that's worth your time.

Best actor, Michael Pitt. You'll see.
1. Boardwalk Empire. I never thought after the Sopranos that HBO could ever produce another hit series. As Boardwalk draws to a close, this has been superb. The cast is one of the strongest I've ever seen in any movie or on TV. It's that simple. Prediction: multiple Emmys. I'll buy ya lunch if I'm proven wrong.

2. Homeland. Although reaching the season's end, Homeland is just getting started and each episode rewards the viewer with twists that challenge the mind and stir the emotions. Claire Danes is excellent as the more-than-slightly unstable CIA agent who has been hot on the trail of Sgt. Brody (Damian Lewis).

3. Dexter. Why do we root for a serial killer? Because he satiates his "dark passenger" by murdering people who are worse? Whatever the moral vagaries, we watch because this series keeps moving and lets the characters' actions speak for themselves.

4. Hell On Wheels. I had low expectations for this AMC series, but this gritty vision of the "Union Pacific Railroad's westward construction of the first transcontinental railroad" is unflinchingly brutal and savvy. SPOILER:

The fight scene was a little weak, but the aftermath was great.

Moot point: It goes without saying that Big Bang Theory is the best ' com on telly today.

I Coulda Been a Contenda
The Walking Dead "mid-season finale" closed with an episode that had a glimpse of the potential that this series has so consistently failed to reach. Drag, drag, drag, talk, talk, talk. If I want that, I'll watch the Lifetime network. Will someone step up and save this series????

Brit stuff:
Whitechapel. Worth a watch.

Real duds:

Unforgettable. I didn't think that the "watch me watch myself in the video vault of my mind" trick would be the reason to watch. Dull and predictable.

Person of Interest. Started out good, then fell flat. Can't say why.

Two and a Half Men. OK, now I'm starting to miss Sheen. Kutcher's lonely hearts club band song is a bit of suspending disbelief. He's funny, but Alan and his dopey son seem like they belong to another sitcom. The three are not coming together in a convincing way. You can see the strain.

Two Broke Girls. They have a horse that lives with them in NYC. Can I have the number of the doctor who precribed the medical marijuana? Laughs are occasional when el skeezo Jonathan Kite lets loose a way inappropriate invitation to love-which is all the time.

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