Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Smart TV in the Summer
Okay granted it's summer and one should be enjoying the nice weather and such but if you just want to crash out in front of the television then these two shows are worth the watch.
Deadwood is a gritty western where you have to pay attention to catch the almost Shakespearing langauge and subtext. It has a fabulous cast and is wonderful storytelling. One week you love a character and very likely the next you might hate them. One second a character is ranting and the next they say something that makes you laugh. Set against the backdrop of the real Deadwood it mixes historical fact (Wild Bill, Calamity Jane, Hurst, etc) with enough dramatic fiction to make one wish every show on tv was this well produced. Certainly not for the faint of heart, as the violence is as brutal as one might imagine it was back then. Season One and Two are out on DVD for those folks looking to catch up.
Doctor Who is on the opposite end of the spectrum but just as wonderful. The first season just finished on Sci-Fi channel but they are still airing repeats and anyone who likes well written stories should check this series out. It's not only for sci-fi fans so don't let the almost 30 year history of the show or the memories of past incarnations scare you. Re-imagined by Russell T. Davies of Queer as Folk BBC fame the new Doctor Who is as hip as they come. The dialogue is fast and fabulous (paying attention comes in handy here as well though if you don't have an ear for the British Accents) and the storytelling is great not only for younger viewers (the series is promoted as a family show in England) but also smart for the adults in the room. And any tv show that introduces a bi-sexual recurring character who is about to get his own spin off on the BBC is worth my time. Season one is due out on DVD next month... Season Two is airing on the BBC.
So if you are looking for something good on TV to pass the time while waiting for your favorite show to start back up try what's keeping me interested on hot summer nights.
And if you are more of a DVD/TV person than you must look into (in no particular order):
Battlestar Gallactica: The finest show on TV right now
Buffy/Firefly/Angel: You can NEVER go wrong with Whedon
Farscape: For those willing to take the sci-fi leap with a series that is as grown-up as Henson Entertainment has ever gotten. Smart, Funny and Entertaining
Golden Girls: Many season are on DVD and it is probably the finest sitcom ever written - those episodes are timeless
The L Word or Queer As Folk: Like I was going to miss putting these on the list. All the Queer seasons are now on DVD. Only the first two L Words are out so far.