Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Thank Goodness for DVR! (tv, entertainment)

Opening day of the MLB season came and went, but what I'm really excited about is the new TV season. I'm especially interested in the upcoming season of AMC's Mad Men. I bought the first season on iTunes long ago and watched the whole second season on AMC when they did a marathon right before the start of the third season. I've been watching ever since. I still think the first season was the best one, much darker in tone and more emotional. While I don't think it'll reach the depths of the first season, the show has gotten darker again the last two seasons. The writing continues to be superb, and I'm fully invested in these characters at this point.

Another series I'm excited about is the third season of HBO's Game of Thrones, but I'm most likely going to wait until the entire season finishes and then binge watch it on demand. One show that I do watch every week is ABC's Castle, which just aired its 100th episode yesterday. It is not an epic television show like the ones mentioned above, but it is whimsical and entertaining. Of the network detective fiction/police procedurals out there, it's the one that most focuses on having fun with its characters and pop culture themes. Over 100 episodes, they've covered zombies, vampires, mummies, voodoo, steampunk, spy thriller, phone sex, S&M clubs, pickup artists, sci-fi conventions, late night TV wars, and many other themes that come up in pockets of pop culture. Yesterday's 100th episode was a delightful homage to Hitchcock's "Rear Window".

The show is not without its flaws, one of the most cited being how it's a continuous parade of red herring suspects until new information comes to light in the penultimate segment. But isn't that how most procedurals work? Knowing that the patient must go into cardiac arrest before Dr. House comes up with the correct diagnosis off some passing comment near the end of the hour didn't detract from my enjoyment of Fox's House(M.D.), which was one of my favorite shows for quite a while. Even the acclaimed Agatha Christie's mysteries were full of deus ex machina back in the day.

The show that I am most excited about this season, however, is BBC's Dr Who. It's the best remaining sci-fi series on TV in my opinion, and a great family show. It has its flaws too, often magnified by the scrutiny of its sci-fi fanbase, but the writing can be very clever at times. It's actually the 50th(!!!) anniversary of Dr Who this year, and I'm very excited about what they will do this season in celebration of such a milestone. Yet... I didn't even know the new season started until it popped up on my DVR! Thank goodness for DVR!

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