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What television series are you currently watching?

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What's everyone looking forward to for the Fall season?

Fargo, Manhattan and South Park high on my list. I hope The Grinder is good because I like the premise. The Muppets looks somewhat promising as a potential sly comedy for adults. Moonbeam City looks like it could be pretty funny even though Miami Vice was never my bag. I might give Nathan For You another chance. Undateable doing all their episodes live looks intriguing. I'll give Dr. Ken a try, although if he turns out to be the same character Ken Jeong has played in literally every other thing he has ever done, I'll be out early. I don't like alternate history things as a rule, but The Man in the High Castle looks really interesting. Aziz Ansari has a comedy on Netflix in November.

Of course, I am rooting hard for Trevor Noah to keep the Daily Show great.

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I just started True Detective this past month. Since every season is a different story with a different cast I decided to start with Season 2 because everyone said Season 1 was so much better - I didn't want Season 2 to be a letdown. I liked Season 2 - A lot. I thought Colin Farrell was outstanding in it - Emmy worthy. Vince Vaughn was just being the dark and brooding Vince Vaughn. Looking forward to watching Season 1 now. I have seen bits and pieces of Rust Kohle, but now I will see the full context of his ramblings. Season 3 takes place in a northern city (maybe Detroit?) and is rumored to star Sam Rockwell. Sam Rockwell is awesome - maybe the most under appreciated actor around (along with Kevin Bacon).

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I've watched every Late Show with Stephen Colbert so far. Colbert is still goofy and pretty funny, yet the comic edge he had at the Colbert Report has yet to emerge.

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I watched the new show Quantico last night. It's definitely very soapy and I found it to be very entertaining. The entire cast is very attractive, especially the Bollywood actress.

Anyway, the premise of the show is that you've got a first year class of fbi academy students, and one of them is supposedly a traitor, blowing up grand central nine months later. It goes back and forth between the aftermath of the attack and the students in the early days of the academy.

I'm not sure if the hook is that a student did it, or if someone else in the fbi did it and they are trying to frame one of the students.

Anyway, I was entertained and I'll be watching the second episode.

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So, I stumbled upon the new show The Grinder with rob Lowe and Fred savage. I thought it was pretty funny. There aren't many comedies on tv that I watch these days but I will give the second episode a shot.

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Thanks for the Narcos recommendation.

Excellent show.

Narcos was great. Seems like it should have finished up in season 1 though.

Need to finish Bloodline

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I just finished the second season of Bojack Horseman and it was fantastic. I really thought that show was going to be absurdly stupid when I first saw a preview, but I love it.

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I like The Man in the High Castle, with minor reservations.

After watching the first two episodes for free before the dump, my opinion then was that the premise of the show is highly intriguing and the aesthetics of the sets and the CGI backgrounding is top-notch. You really do feel like you are there, even though there is this foreboding darkness that pervades the scenes, probably through the use of excessive filtering (understandably, to convey the moroseness of the characters and scenes). The storyline to that point was pretty good, particularly as it contemplated the political and ideological portions of the show, and got even better and more engrossing as the show continued on. At the time, I hadn’t gotten far enough into the series to see whether there is a superfluous and pointless romantic B-story.

As interesting as the premise is and as beautiful as the art direction is, where the show lacks is in the performances. Especially in the earlier episodes, the actors deliver their lines and movements as though they are ACTORS (read: ac-TORS). There is not enough subtlety in the performances, and everything by the characters is delivered in such grave and earnest fashion that we’re not seeing as much of their humanity as we need to in order to really care about them as people. If they had turned the tone of their performances down a notch—after all, this is television, not the—they could have elevated the show to the dramatic level of The Wire, the Sopranos or Mad Men, rather than to the dramatic level of your run-of-the-mill procedural.

One other distracting element in the show is in the liberal use of melodramatic music underpinning the scenes to cue the viewer that there is HEAVY BUSINESS transpiring, which is most scenes. To my way of the thinking, the overuse of music under dialogue betrays a confidence in the level of the actors to convey the gravitas needed the keep the viewer in thrall to the proceedings. The great shows I just mentioned didn’t need to use music in this way.

Shortcomings aside, the performances did improve in the later episodes, for which I was grateful, but it never does fully shake it's B-movie-level seriousness during the moments of truth. All this said, the story is gripping, and even though I am through six episodes and at the moment they are following the activities of the protagonists Joe Black and Juliana Crain in parallel on opposite ends of the continent, I am still rooting against a romantic reunion between them as the B-story. I'm going to go ahead and expect that to happen, though, so I won't end up being as disappointed when it does, and pleasantly surprised if it doesn't.

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Just started watching Jessica Jones, the latest from Marvel's roster on Nexflix. Very dark, but intriguing. David Tennent has the makings of a great villain

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So, I stumbled upon the new show The Grinder with rob Lowe and Fred savage. I thought it was pretty funny. There aren't many comedies on tv that I watch these days but I will give the second episode a shot.

The Grinder is a fun half hour. The cast is pretty good. Savage and Lowe have good chemistry and are very funny together.

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I just finished the second season of Bojack Horseman and it was fantastic. I really thought that show was going to be absurdly stupid when I first saw a preview, but I love it.

same here.

On Sherlock now. Amazing.

Just started watching Jessica Jones, the latest from Marvel's roster on Nexflix. Very dark, but intriguing. David Tennent has the makings of a great villain

this is next though!

I also watch The Grinder. Its not good per se, but it does the trick for a mindless half hour.

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The Grinder is a fun half hour. The cast is pretty good. Savage and Lowe have good chemistry and are very funny together.

I like The Grinder so far, although I think their eventual challenge is going to be making it more than a one-joke premise.

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I like The Man in the High Castle, with minor reservations.

...As interesting as the premise is and as beautiful as the art direction is, where the show lacks is in the performances. Especially in the earlier episodes, the actors deliver their lines and movements as though they are ACTORS (read: ac-TORS). There is not enough subtlety in the performances, and everything by the characters is delivered in such grave and earnest fashion that we’re not seeing as much of their humanity as we need to in order to really care about them as people. If they had turned the tone of their performances down a notch—after all, this is television, not the—they could have elevated the show to the dramatic level of The Wire, the Sopranos or Mad Men, rather than to the dramatic level of your run-of-the-mill procedural.

I finished the 10 episodes, and I agree with this, by and large.

The fundamental problem in my opinion is the actors playing Julia Crain and Joe Blake are simply not good enough actors to pull their end of the bargain. I would say their scenes together highlight this weakness, but where it is really evident, IMO, is juxaposed against Cary Tagawa (Trade Minister Tagomi) and Rufus Sewell (Obergruppenführer Smith). Both those actors are clearly a level or two above the main protagonists.

That isn't to say I think they are bad, because I don't think they are. I've definitely seen far worse performances, as well as performances that were far more damaging to an otherwise good show or movie. But it definitely brings down my opinion of the show taking it all in. I'd give the show 7.5 out of 10 or something.

Other criticisms I'll add that weren't touched on:

1. Sometimes when only Japanese or Germans are in a scene they spoke their native language and sometimes English. Setting aside the inconsistency (which I found distracting), from a realism standpoint I prefer native language and subtitles. Narcos did this and I think it works really well. But I never minded subtitles. YMMV.

2. When Julia and the shopkeeper spoke Japanese to make a pleasantry, they also said the equivalent thing in English immediately afterwards. This double talk would not take place in an actual conversation and doesn't give the audience credit to figure out the pleasantry on their own. Or just throw a subtitle if you are that worried the audience won't get it.

3. For a character that was built up to be somewhat embracing of Japanese culture (e.g. is proficient at aikido), I expected Julia to have much better grasp of spoken Japanese as well as non-verbal communication such as bowing (which is very important in that environment). She basically sounded and looked like someone who has no knowledge of Japanese or Japanese culture (which the actress clearly doesn't). I know it sounds like a nit-pick, and perhaps it is, but as someone that lived in Japan for a while her performance in this regard was quite off.

4. Building off of 3., the sycophantic antiques shop-keeper missed the mark some as well (though I think that is script writing more than anything). For someone who understood how rare it was to be invited to that couple's house (which I felt he conveyed extremely well), he made some egregious social faux pas at the dinner that I wouldn't expect him to make given that build up. His later surprise at how he was treated when he showed up unexpectedly was off as well. He would have known he would be treated like that. A small criticism regarding a minor character, to be sure.

Edited by Mr. Bigglesworth

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Right now I'm alternating between episodes of Jessica Jones, Man in the High Castle, and Gotham. I think I'm enjoying High Castle the most since the whole concept is fascinating to me, but I have to agree about some of the acting that others have brought up. But for me the premise more than makes up for it. Has anybody here read the book it is based on? I think when I finish up a couple of the books I'm reading now I'll try that.

I binged Master of None (Aziz Ansari) on Netflix in a weekend, I really really enjoyed it. I'm not sure if others here would like it as much as me, but it is definitely worth a try.

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I think I'm enjoying High Castle the most since the whole concept is fascinating to me,.

Yup - I think the premise and the look of the show are really top notch. I think the support characters are really solid as were some side plots.

I feel like the leads merely treaded water, if that makes sense.

EDIT: I have not read the book though reading a synoposis of it suggests to me the show deviates from the source material a fair bit.

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