Quite simply one of the best weekly half-hours HBO has ever produced about life in Los Angeles.
A Marvel superhero serial set in and against the backdrop of Harlem is a significant development, and a milestone that's overdue—but Luke Cage, the series and the character, labor so mightily under this responsibility that the plot often veers erratically between leaden, sermonizing dialogue and plodding action sequences. The result is awkwardness instead of alchemy. If the show wasn't so busy touting its own importance, maybe it could let its excellent cast loose in its awesome setting and everyone could have more fun.
It's weird, it's clever, it's fun to talk about with my friends, and the production values are astonishing.
The kind of pitch-black satire I didn't know Lifetime was even allowed to produce. Every episode is like getting a tumbler of ice-cold gin thrown in your face. A tonic.
Unexpectedly ambitious, compact and visceral in a way that Marvel's flagship series, the boxy, shoulder-padded Agents of Shield, is not. And unlike the latter, Daredevil manages to connect with the larger Cinematic Universe in a way that doesn't feel like it's always pulling its punches.
An ingratiating fable of coincidence bordering on magic realism, all urban dreamfeel and casual privilege, with New York acting as a sort of massive art-school campus for the musically gifted. The proceedings are anchored with just enough sincerity and biting humor to keep the entire enterprise from floating away.
Unlike its more pedigreed Netflix cousin House of Cards, Orange Is the New Black is actually a hundred percent better its second season, more confident, more nuanced, although the sex scenes and flashbacks still have a bit of that cheapo-gimmicky Showtime vibe.
So squarely pro-science and space-positive that it's difficult not to embrace its corny resoluteness and boyishly gee-whiz visuals.
Whereas the first season of Cards ended with the ascendant Underwoods poised for various pleasurable comeuppances, the second season dispenses with those promising storylines so peremptorily that you almost get the feeling the showrunners have no idea what made the series' initial run so enjoyable.
With its matronly title and CBS berth, it's little wonder this Ridley Scott production doesn't receive a lot of buzz. It is, however, the canniest, the shrewdest, the most inventive and frequently the most surprising series on network television.
It's a little bit Country Strong, and it's a little bit rock-and–Robert Altman's–rolling-in-his-grave.
They spun a whole cotton-candy show out of the sugary one-minute Pan Am-stewardess sequence from 2002's Catch Me If You Can. Enjoy the empty calories while they last.
In Michael Winterbottom's hands what could have been wanky and meta becomes sincere and naturalistic.
So far it's straddling the caustic/humane gulf without seeming schizoid. Being only half an hour long helps.
I could easily picture myself stepping out for a pack of smokes and never watching this show again, which makes it this year's Samantha Who?
I guess I should just admit I've been watching this show. The "Grey's Anatomy in space" angle has been grating for the eight episodes aired in the US thus far—but wouldn't you know it, the ninth episode, which I had to finagle the Canadian broadcast of because the show's been pulled from ABC's schedule—that's the episode that finally revealed enough of a big idea to keep me interested … in a show that's probably been canceled. Eh, the production values really weren't half bad, considering.
The pilot was the late Anthony Minghella's final big-hearted valentine to the world. May the series live up to it.
It's debatable how long a serial with so few recurring characters exploring the romanticized mysteries of what is essentially a dead-end job can maintain its delicate night-bloom charms, but this Showtime import (happily London-based with nary a whiff of the network's usual Canada-for-wherever substitutions) is watchable thus far. And for all the typical premium-cable come-ons about pseudo-hardcore hanky-panky, at this point boringly numerous and inevitable, the actual onscreen couplings are handled with an almost novel absence of exploitation. The mystique of illicit, moodily lit, soft-focus sex, and the obligatorily arch, worldly observations designed to puncture it, tend to come with a built-in expiration date; but for now, in twenty-minute segments, they feel comparatively fresh and inviting.
The "offbeat/quirky" tone is liable to wear out its welcome quickly, but for the time being the cast is charming and there are chuckles, if not outright laughs, to be had. Oh, but please: no more self-indulgent cameos from exec pro-doucher Ashton Kutcher.
Not into it enough to catch up on the first season, but it's something to TiVo during the summer.
Because Top Chef is only on once a week.
Pure joy. [via sixfoot6.com]
Giving it a shot, even though the pilot was chintzy, inauthentic and unfocused.
Why does every episode of this show feel like it's ninety minutes long? The fate of the free world doesn't rest on sketch comedy. The fate of network television doesn't rest on sketch comedy. Nevertheless, nice try. Welcome back, Matthew Perry. And welcome, period, Amanda Peet. Enjoy it while it lasts, whatever it is.
Numerous personal recommendations, an EW cover story and an iTunes binge have made me a convert. I'll Netflix the rest while awaiting Season 3.
I want to like this show.
Me and you and everyone we know.
Almost mind-alteringly not-shitty for a Showtime serial. In fact it's so not-shitty that HBO should probably trade Big Love for it just to restore the cosmic premium cable balance. (PS. Also surprisingly not-shitty for anything—live action—featuring Hank Azaria.)