Posts Tagged television
Wow… Just what an amazing first episode for HBO’s new crime drama True Detective. For those unaware, the show follows around two detectives (Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson) and their quest to hunt down a serial killer in Louisiana. I’m a little late because the episode premiered during the Golden Globes this past Sunday, but boy do I wish I had tuned into this instead.
The show opens up with a taped off crime scene at a lonely tree in the center of crop fields where viewers are immediately hit with a dark and twisted ritualistic murder that features a naked girl in a fixed position with a crown made from branches and deer antlers on her head. I thought that this opening was really well done and immediately sets a very dark tone that the show will hopefully embody throughout its entire first season.
The episode introduced us to partners Rust (McConaughey) and Martin (Harrelson) who, while having many differences, share a respect over their duty to the law and to one another’s brilliant skill set. Rust is clearly the mysterious odd man out in the office, coming from Southern Texas and known as “The Taxman” for carrying around a larger than normal notepad while Martin is the family man who does his job well and is much more approachable. The two seem like an odd but fitting pair who can get the job done by combining their different methods and knowledge.
I thought it was interesting that the show is set both in the past and future and we discover that the case featured in the show actually takes place around 10 years beforehand and Rust and Marting are no longer partners or even speaking with one another. They are both back in the police station being interviewed at separate times to reflect on the case that is covered throughout this episode. Martin makes some comment towards the fact that over seven years people change and things happen, but we are still in the dark about the reasons for their apparent falling out. In the future scenes, Martin seems to still have his act together and possibly have some type of a job with the police seeing as he is in a suit and tie. Rust, on the other hand, has seemed to let himself go; sporting long and messy hair, a mustache, and is still ripping through cigs while starting his drinking at noon. This leaves viewers with so many questions about their relationship and time on the force, those “how did we get here?” type questions, but the big question, which even the two present day detectives ask their interviewers is, why is this important? What does it relate to?
In the shows closing moments, Rust questions why he was called in and we are shown a case file featuring a picture of a woman suspended from a bridge, naked, with the same symbols and deer antler crown as the body found in the past. The two current officers say they are trying to figure out how this happened if Rust and Martin caught and locked this guy up so long ago. And as if this premiere episode weren’t amazing already, McConaughey drives it home with the deliverance of one final line, “start asking the right fucking questions.” and we fade out to the burning drag he takes from his cigarette.
This first episode was really phenomenal and just feels like a show that has been missing from my life. It’s dark, edgy, thrilling, and thought provoking which is pretty much everything I could want in a crime show. I love the mystery to Rust’s character and felt like he was this badass southern rogue version of Sherlock that I want to see more of. Both McConaughey and Harrelson killed it and I can’t wait for the second episode! I definitely recommend watching True Detective as soon as possible because it has already caught my attention and will hopefully only get better and become one of 2014’s best shows.
What did you think of the show? How do you think it looks going forward? Leave your thoughts and comments below!
As the holidays approach people generally are spending more time off work, or relaxing from school or [like me] finishing semester finals. I like to spend a lot of my lazy winter days and nights blowing through a bunch of tv shows on Netflix and catching up with my live shows. I’ve been doing pretty good with the live television, only needing to catch up with The Walking Dead and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but have been recently exploring Netflix to check out those shows I’ve always eyed up but never watched. Here are the 5 shows that I think are best to binge watch over the holiday period.
Spaced | 8.7/10
This is the short lived comedy show written and starring Simon Pegg and Jessica Hynes and directed by Edgar Wright. The show has two awesome seven episode seasons with the episodes only running 24 minutes.
Pegg and Hynes star as Tim and Daisy, a scraping by writer and comic book artist who fake being a couple in order to rent an affordable apartment. During their time in the flat, they hang out with a familiar motley crew that contains familiar faces from Wright and Pegg’s Cornetto Trilogy; Nick Frost plays Tim’s best friend, Mike Watt, a man solely focused on getting into the army, while Mark Heap plays the odd modern artist Brian Topp, who is hilarious and a lives secluded in the basement.
The show is very goofy, especially a couple episodes in once it develops, and also reminds us to stay relaxed even if our futures may seem uncertain. If you enjoyed any of Wright’s other works, you should really enjoy this as well. Most of the characters pop up in Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, or The World’s End, and the directing feels exactly the same as those films. With only 14 total episodes and an 8.7 out of 10 star rating on IMDB, Spaced is a great show to quickly move through and ease into your winter binge watching.
Peep Show | 8.5/10
Peep Show is a British comedy that I’m definitely the most unfamiliar with. It’s been on my list of shows to check out, but since my roommate blew through the entire series, he has been raving about it to me, so that pushed me to watch. This is the show that I’m currently watching after finishing up Spaced, and so far I’m enjoying it.
The show focuses on two twenty-something year old roommates, Mark and Jeremy, who have absolutely nothing in common. The show follows the two around catching all of the cringe-y but funny moments that occur within their daily lives. The unique aspect that this show brings to the table is constantly swapping between first and third person and provides some great camera views and an original style.
I’m only nearing the end of the first season but Peep Show was definitely a good show selection. It has been going strong since 2003 and has eight completed seasons (all on Netflix), with a ninth on the way. Peep Show has a very solid 8.5 out of 10 on IMDB, and only having six episodes in a season that are 24 minutes long makes it manageable to power through, especially if you get hooked.
Arrow | 8.1/10
If you want to move into a more involved 40 minute action show, then Arrow is a must see, especially if you love the superhero genre. DC has been making a strong push with their cinematic universe and a television presence, and Arrow has been consistently getting better! The first season is very enjoyable and available on Netflix. It brings a completely new origin story to the Green Arrow character that combines the idea of Smallville with elements mimicked from Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy.
The show is on the CW and has a cast I’m largely unfamiliar with. Stephen Amell takes up the role of Oliver Queen, while John Barrowman (Capt. Jack from Torchwood/Doctor Who) plays the familiar Merlyn and Manu Bennett (Crixus in Starz’s Spartacus) as Slade Wilson. The show interestingly has two plots running at once that focuses on the “Hood”, as he is called in the show, saving Starling City, while a second plot provides a background story for the archer.
I really like the dark tone of the show and the fact that for being on the CW it’s not filled with any unnecessary drama. The second season has taken the show to the next level and is setting up for some awesome plot lines in the future as well as already bringing in other DC characters, like Barry Allen, a.k.a. The Flash. Arrow currently sits with an 8.1 out of 10 stars on IMDB and is the top superhero show currently on television in my opinion; however, it might take a little longer to catch up with because of it’s 40 minute length and full season order of 23 episodes.
House of Cards | 8.8/10
I know that a lot of people have already checked out Netflix’s first original series, House of Cards. With it’s star studded cast Starring Kevin Spacey, Robin Wright, Michael Kelly, and Kate Mara, House of Cards has one amazing first season with 13 hour long episodes that reveal the twisted manipulating world of politics.
The main character, Congressman Francis Underwood (Spacey), is a smart and powerful man who breaks the fourth wall (addresses the audience directly) to explain the situations he finds himself in and the decisions he makes to gain more power for himself. It’s a very unique show but definitely can hang with other premium television channels like HBO and Showtime. Francis is ruthless and conniving, yet awesome and super interesting at the same time; Spacey is phenomenal in the role.
House of Cards has a very high 8.8 out of 10 rating on IMDB and did great for it’s first season. As I said, I know many people have seen the show already, but if you enjoy re-watching television or haven’t gotten to check it out yet, now is the perfect time. House of Cards is set to return for its second season on Valentine’s Day 2014, and being only 13 episodes it is easily binge-able and becomes very addicting!
Party Down | 8.2/10
The last show I’m going to leave you all with is one of my favorite comedies that sadly ran for only two seasons back in 2009/10; Party Down. A group of actors who haven’t quite made it yet are paying the bills by working for a catering company. The show is the different types of parties that they work and the hilarious and strange situations that they encounter.
The cast of this show is awesome and stars Adam Scott (Parks & Rec, Step Brothers), Ken Marino (Role Models, Eastbound & Down), Martin Starr (Adventureland, Knocked Up), and Lizzy Caplan (Mean Girls, Masters of Sex). Adam Scott is great in the lead but can curse because this was a Starz show it was able to be a little raunchier with its humor. The catering scenarios that this group gets assigned to are ridiculous but explore all of the weird corners in Hollywood.
The show only has two 10 episode seasons and each episode is 30 minutes and has an 8.2 out of 10 on IMDB. I wish this show hadn’t been cancelled, but it just feels like it might have been a year or two ahead of its time. There are rumors that they are trying to put together a Party Down movie, but for now both seasons of this glorious gem can be found on Netflix.
Well, there you have it, five shows to check out depending on how much time you have over the [hopefully] relaxing holiday period. If you’re like me, a senior in college, then I’m sure laying in bed and watching Neftlix after these extremely late study filled nights sounds pretty enticing. Either way, these shows are all great to fill your free time with and don’t take too long to get through or catch up with!
Here’s a video with a quick preview to the upcoming episode of Arrow that introduces Barry Allen a.k.a. The Flash. This gives DC fans a first glimpse of what’s to come from the next installment of their TV Universe. I think the last I heard was that the Flash tv show will not relate to the planned Flash and Justice League movies.
I like the majority of what Arrow is doing and I’ve noticed a lot of similarities to Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy. I like how they are building the show so far, and hopefully the Flash can follow this structure.
Adult Swim posted the pilot episode for their new show, Rick and Morty, from Community’s Dan Harmon.
The pilot is a full 22 minutes and stars Justin Roiland, Chris Parnell, Sarah Chalke, and Spencer Grammer.
The show is perfect for Adult Swim and this first episode was hilarious. Rick, Morty’s alcoholic, mad scientist grandfather is like a rapidly drinking Doc Brown who is always pulling Morty away in the middle of the night or during school to accompany him on wild inter-dimensional shenanigans.
Definitely make sure to check out this pilot if you already enjoy Adult Swim.
to entice you all further, Justin Roiland voices voices Lemongrab on Adventure Time, and this show definitely gives off a AT vibe.
How I Met Your Mother S9E03 “Last Time in New York” Review – Wisconsin is the Worst Place in the World
The episode picks up with Barney and Robin going over some wedding plans – Barney continues to say “ring bear” leaving Robin left to hope that he’s not going to bring one to the wedding. I’m really loving this joke so far because knowing Barney, he could have some huge spectacle for the wedding.
Ted has put together a list of things he wants to do before he leaves New York and Lily finds it. She is still the only one who knows about his secretly planned departure because Ted does not want to pull attention from Barney and Robin’s wedding. Ted’s list has a specific date listed on and when Lily asks, Ted admits to slashing her dress during a sword fight between him and Marshall. This allows for some nice past sword fighting moments and good bonding between Ted and Lily.
Meanwhile, Robin and Barney trying to find a more exotic place to have sex so they don’t feel old. In the process they are avoiding their old relatives who they compare to zombies; slow moving, groaning, etc. The couple comes across an ice room and decide to head in because it is too cold for the elderly. They discover that James has already claimed the hiding place; however, after discussing their premarital woes with him, he decides to give them the room so that they don’t lose their sexual attraction like he and Tom. James heads out into the hallway where he is immediately bombed with questions from the relatives.
Barney and Robin split up to cover more ground on their search for a room, and Robin heads into the bar where she glances at Ted’s list. Just as Ted seemed to get caught red handed and about to disturb the wedding feeling, Lily claims the list to be hers; saying she wants to do it all before she heads to Italy. Robin brings up the date again and asks Lily if she came clean about breaking Ted and Marshall’s $600 bottle of scotch and then replacing it with a horrid concoction of ingredients.
Eventually, Barney and Robin think they discover a room to do the deed in, however, it turns out to be occupied by two of the relatives having sex. After stumbling out of the room gagging in disgust, Barney and Robin realize how actually admirable it is that they are still attracted to each other at an old age, and realize that they will be like that too.
We then return to Lily and Ted, where Lily asks Ted for probably the third time in the episode if he is avoiding Barney. He admits that he feels awkward to which Lily gives him a hard time for and talks about how he needs to just let it go and realize the positives going on around him. She gives a really great speech that really shows the strength of their friendship; she brings up how he should turn things like “have a last scotch with Barney” into “have the first scotch with Barney on the biggest day of his life” and this is able to set Ted’s thinking straight.
Ted hops up and decides he should have the drink with Barney now. He heads out onto the deck of the building with two glasses in hand but is stopped short by Barney’s admittance to seeing him and Robin by the carousel. I surely wasn’t expecting it, and of course, after this the show ends.
Overall, I thought it was a nice episode, but nothing special. There were good touching moments in tonight’s episode with light humor woven in along the way. I’m curious to see how Ted and Barney’s talk goes, but I hope it doesn’t create too big of a deal.
- One quick point I want to bring up is Marshall. He’s still on a road trip with Daphne, but this episode he provided the most amount of humor because he and Marvin had to drive through Wisconsin “the worst place in the world” according to our favorite Vikings fan. Seeing him in Packers gear was too funny!
Did anyone else like the episode? How do you think Barney and Ted’s talk will go – will Ted’s secret move to Cleveland be revealed as well? The wedding is only getting closer!
Tonight’s New Girl episode had a lot of good things going for it. I’m still nervous about Nick and Jess getting together so early in the show, but I’m optimistic that they will become a lovable Jim & Pam -esque couple who are great together and you like to have around, and tonight is what that felt like as we now watch them grow together. Winston had a hilarious plot tonight, which I thought was good because while I do like Winston, I feel like his plot lines have been pretty boring and unimportant. Schmidt’s story is receiving the largest portion of my attention because he’s in the toughest spot out of anyone, and tonight really tested his emotions and showed the caring side of his character.
Jess is stuck as an outsider at the new school she’s teaching at and devises how she can better fit in with a specific clique of teachers. Nick shows up to the school with a tribute of some throw together school supplies and on a whim invites them to his bar where “teachers drink free”. While Jess is at first against the idea, Nick explains to Jess that she really has no choice because she is the “nerd” trying to fit in and earn approval. This leads to the teachers and Jess trying to break into the principal’s backyard to use his Jacuzzi. Nick warns Jess as she hops the fence, but then joins her, solidifying their relationship by letting her know that if he can’t change her mind, he’ll still join her. It was a really nice scene that held the same goofy and light humor while mixing in a loving moment and eased my feelings about Nick and Jess getting together. I really liked their plot tonight and thought it showed how the characters still have much to offer one another despite being a couple now, and hopefully this is the start of a fun and solid relationship.
Winston’s story was really funny tonight, and I thought that was a good change. I’m hoping to see Winston eventually get a more serious plot because he just seems to be around while Nick, Jess, and Schmidt are dealing with really serious situations. Then again, maybe because of that they are keeping him in a humor role and will develop something for him later. Either way, tonight Winston starts off really excited to take care of Daisy’s cat because he wants to become exclusive with her. He heads to her house where it sounds like someone is in the shower, and although Daisy denies it, there is a men’s sized shoe on the ground. Winston asks her if someone is in the shower but she says she was about to get in, however, the water magically goes off and then the toilet flushes moments later. Clearly, Daisy is cheating on Winston, yet he still takes the cat and plans to kill it for revenge. A great scene ensues where Winston has placed multiple life ending items on the kitchen table and he is going to have the cat pick – “The hammer is a good way to go”. Eventually, Daisy returns for the cat and Winston (who has not killed the cat) confronts her about the other day where she admits to having sex with someone else. Winston takes a stand and ends his relationship with Daisy and also keeps the cat because it deserves better.
This brings us to the plot that I, personally, and the most interested in; Schmidt and his love triangle. Still currently dating both Cece and Elizabeth he can’t think about picking one and hurting the other. He invites Cece to a company party but both girls end up scheduled to come. There is a bunch of running around and some huge luck on Schmidt’s side, but he plays it off and somehow survives with both girls finding out what’s really going on. To see Schmidt balance the situation and dodge the truth was funny, but by the end of the night he looked like he was about to cry because I think he realizes how Cece or Elizabeth is going to get really hurt when he makes his decision. I really wonder how much longer this is going to play out because Schmidt is going to lose both of them due to his dishonesty. Either way, he’s not having fun doing all of this, so I’m expecting him to man up and handle it soon or else it’s going to bite him in the ass.
This second episode of New Girl was an improvement from the premiere, and the gang members each seem to be forming their individual plot lines for the season. I want to see more of Nick and Jess and really think they could be a new Jim and Pam type couple, and now Winston can focus on doing something for himself or finding another girl. Schmidt is going to have a long and rough season ahead of him; I expect him to choose Cece but not want to hurt Elizabeth and both girls will find out what is really going on. He will try to explain himself and lose them both, then having to spend the season building his relationship with Cece back up, so I hope he’s ready to hang in there because either way it’s not looking pretty. This should be another good season though!
Last night How I Met Your Mother returned for it’s ninth and final season. The show aired two back to back episodes and I already put out a review for the first, so here is my conclusion review to the second episode which was titled “Coming Back”. The first episode finished on a nice sentimental note of Ted’s present to Robin being a picture of everyone when they first met, “so she doesn’t forget her friends”.
This episode picks up immediately highlighting how Ted is here without a girlfriend or wife. He talks to Lily about it when walking up to the front desk and the clerk rubs it in by showing Lily all of the hotel’s services provided for couples while giving Ted a TV guide. Ouch. Lily sprinkles some more salt into the wound by adding, “if I had to be here alone I would kill myself”. I found myself laughing yet after investing myself into nine seasons of this show I still feel bad for Ted and just want him and the mother to meet already!
Meanwhile in Minnesota, Marshall has just missed his flight and is in danger of missing the wedding. Because of bad storms, all flights are cancelled to the east coast for the weekend and Marshall has to rent a car. He has been competing with the woman he sat next to on the plane, so he is determined to beat her to New York. Unfortunately, Marshall gets to the car rental behind the woman and is further back in a separate line. While Marshall is praying for a miracle, in classic HIMYM story moment, “Marshall got Herb,” a frail old man who replaces the current car rental attendant for Marshall’s line and he magically is the fastest, which magically leaves Marshall securing the final available car and leaving his opponent in the dust.
It turns out the car is a “2006 Monstrosity that gets 0.5 MPG” – Not bad if you ask me.
So Marshall has a short crisis as a big environmentalist and doesn’t want to take this car. The woman says she has no problem taking it, forcing Marshall to keep it; however, they make a deal to drive together and split the driving. Marshall is just a super nice guy, so I’m glad he didn’t get screwed over.
Back at Barney and Robin’s rehearsal dinner, while Barney gets up for a drink and his homosexual brother James admits to everyone else that he is getting a divorce from his partner Tom. Robin freaks out because Barney claims that James and Tom are the only couple that make him believe in marriage. Her little faith in Barney is slightly surprising and a definite slip for Robin from her usual rock skin self.
Eventually, Barney figures out what is going on and he doesn’t get mad, but leads Robin to the hotel room for James and Tom where he set up a big anniversary surprise. It’s another touching moment that highlights Barney’s growth and acceptance about the marriage. He seems to love Robin and while he will have a freak out, it’s nice to see him act like an adult and still be funny and cool.
On top of this, the end of the episode has one of the best and worst moments ever for Ted. I loved how they filmed and edited the scene to overlap current depressed alone Ted with future Ted who returns with the Mother.
Future Ted explains how he made a promise to himself that day to return next year with the girl that would be “the one”. I thought it was a really clever way to incorporate showing us the relationship between Ted and the mother so we can watch it grow.
For the second episode of the season, really an extension from the first with how they were aired, was a nice way to finish up and bring back the show. I thought that the order of events was well planned because they returned with a focus on the gang and transitioned into Ted and the mother, ending with a hopeful and inspiring scene.
This last season is really going to be great, and I’m sad to say goodbye to another great show, but this is what we have all been waiting for, so let’s enjoy it!