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John Byrne
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Posted: 17 October 2018 at 3:58pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

Nothing I actively dislike about THE GOOD PLACE. Just not my cup o tea.
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 17 October 2018 at 11:08pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I found a good deal to dislike about THE GOOD PLACE. I toppled fairly early to the reveal about one of the central characters and asked myself as I continued to watch this much-praised series, "They're not seriously going to wait 'til the end of the season to spring that, are they..?" But yes, that is exactly what they did. 

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Season One ended with them hitting the reset button and starting the story over again essentially, only with even more tedious set-ups in the characters' new "lives." I couldn't make it through the first episode of Season Two but remained curious as to whether the story actually had an idea of where it was going. So I simply watched the final episode of the season, and I have to say, I actually liked that one. I may check out the next season and only watch the final episode of that as well. :-)


Edited by Brian Hague on 17 October 2018 at 11:09pm
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 18 October 2018 at 9:41pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply


Stephen King's IT [1990 TV mini-series]

Seemed passable at the time it first aired (I would have only been 18--good grief!), but time has not been kind.  Today, it plays like a slightly more intense version of the kiddie show "Goosebumps."

The child actors, sadly, aren't very good; the script is so-so; direction is merely adequate; the score is shockingly Casio-chintzy at times; and the mostly-overlit photography doesn't help the atmosphere any.

That said, the only main reasons for me to revisit, every so often, are the wonderful adult actors (mostly TV vets at the time) and their nuanced performances... and of course, the stupendous Tim Curry, who, while ultimately underutilized, still makes every single appearance work like gangbusters.

(And I can't honestly say which version I prefer--this, or the surprisingly goofy 2017 film version.  Six of one, half a dozen of the other...?)



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John Byrne
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Posted: 19 October 2018 at 7:27am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

A few episodes from the penultimate season of PARKS & RECREATION.

Since I'm also watching the first searon of MARY TYLER MOORE I am reminded again of how much modern sitcoms depend on subplots and continured story threads. P&R episodes pretty much have to be watched in order. Not so MTM, or any others of that vintage.

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Michael Penn
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Posted: 19 October 2018 at 9:25am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Essentially excepting Mary Tyler Moore's hair/fashions, not much else would distinguish any episode (as far as I can remember from way back then). As with the comicbooks of yore, each episode could have been a viewer's first. Makes me wonder if something was lost in TV too.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 19 October 2018 at 9:45am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Movies, TV and comics have all suffered from the same blight: fans coming to control the properties while steadfastly refusing to let go of their fan mentality.

Remember what Len Wein said: the first story youd do as a fan should be the last story youd do as a Pro.

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Michael Penn
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Posted: 19 October 2018 at 10:58am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

How odd that a fan wouldn't want Ted Baxter, for example, to remain Ted Bextar -- or Cyclops, Cyclops...? Fans-turned-pros end up "hating" what they loved? Why?

(I don't know that it is actual hate. Disdain?Derision?)
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John Byrne
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Posted: 19 October 2018 at 1:06pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Some fans develop an attitude much like drug addicts. They hate what theyre doing, but they cant stop. So the attitude becomes derisive and sometimes destructive.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 20 October 2018 at 6:03pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

THE CONNERS (S1 E1)

I said if they did it Id watch it. They did. I did. Liked it.

(John Goodman looks ghastly. I hope hes not sick.)

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Brian Miller
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Posted: 20 October 2018 at 7:07pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

IIRC, he had some heart problems a few years ago and lost a lot of weight afterwards to try and get healthy. 
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 20 October 2018 at 7:31pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

I wonder if fans-turned-pro today read Wein's advice as recommending they do a number of standard-issue, workaday stories first to polish their craft before REALLY letting loose with the good stuff; the fan-stories they've held in their heart-of-hearts since they were thirteen years old...

Like what if Superman realized he was really retarded by Kryptonian standards and his parents sent him to Earth as "special school" and are actually still alive but don't care about him? Or.. or... or... what if Wonder Woman were gang-raped by a platoon of militaristic lizard-demons and after a hellish pregnancy was now the Brood Mother of over a hundred warrior-born, reptilian killer-demons, all of whom will murder whoever Mother says to?? Wouldn't that be AWESOME??? What... what... what if Batman has been secretly taking the internal organs of his deceased foes as trophies and in back, where no one could see it, the Batcave was like a friggin' slaughterhouse, dripping with blood and gore and stuff...? And what if we call the story, "Putting the 'Bat' back in 'Abattoir?'" Man, that would be sick... We could call the newly revealed section "The Abattoir" and it would become part of the legend like the giant penny and Arkham Asylum... 

You want to be sharp and professional when you roll out the big guns like those, so do boring, unimportant stuff for a while at first, revive the "Green Team" or something, and then, then hit 'em where they really live with the treasures of your child-self's fever-brain!!

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Petter Myhr Ness
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Posted: 21 October 2018 at 2:58pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

YES, MINISTER

Hadn't seen it in ages, and I just plowed through series 1. Though obviously dated, it's still funny. The performances are sublime. 
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James Best
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Posted: 31 October 2018 at 6:43pm | IP Logged | 13 post reply

Finally finished off Ken Burns' THE VIETNAM WAR (2017) via Netflix.

It was very well crafted, with Burns (as usual) getting the most out of both still photography and film clips. And there was a lot of material presented which I had no clue about.

I thought it was a very comprehensive account of the war, which lasted thirty years (1945 - 1975). Not easy to watch in certain spots but definitely an unwavering view of all sides of the battlefield.
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James Best
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Posted: 01 November 2018 at 9:08pm | IP Logged | 14 post reply

Now starting season 3 of DAREDEVIL on Netflix... 
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John Byrne
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Posted: 02 November 2018 at 5:54am | IP Logged | 15 post reply

The Halloween episode of THE CONNERS.

Amusing, but I suggest they taper off the references to Dead Mom. Since we all know the behind the scenes story, they are a distraction.

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Brian Miller
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Posted: 02 November 2018 at 6:23am | IP Logged | 16 post reply

We started THE GOOD PLACE. Im really liking it. Ted Danson is a hoot and Im enjoying learning about The Neighborhood and its inhabitants. 
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 02 November 2018 at 6:53am | IP Logged | 17 post reply

I recently binged season six of HOMELAND. Many of the show's familiar tropes are in place despite the move to New York as the setting. There is a viscerally satisfying selection of moments during the press siege of Carrie's apartment, and as always, the answers do not come easily nor do they leave us comforted. This season offers an interesting take on an alternate presidency in which a gold-star mom is elected and the deplorables turn out in record numbers to chant for her downfall.

Edited by Brian Hague on 02 November 2018 at 6:54am
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Doug Centers
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Posted: 08 November 2018 at 7:10pm | IP Logged | 18 post reply

More 3rd ROCK from the SUN (S2), and a perpetual grin on my face while watching.

Genius!!
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John Byrne
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Posted: 11 November 2018 at 5:31pm | IP Logged | 19 post reply

QUATERMASS AND THE PIT (1957)

The original 6 part BBC serial, which I watch about once a year. Quite brilliant.

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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 12 November 2018 at 10:13am | IP Logged | 20 post reply

Didn't see it until BBC aired it about 4-5 years ago. Enjoyed it immensely!
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Petter Myhr Ness
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Posted: 12 November 2018 at 3:42pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

BODYGUARD (2018)

British thriller, not the the Kevin Costner film (though the premise sounds eerily similar, but don't worry). Caught this much-hyped show on Netflix. Good action, with some surprises along the way. 
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 13 November 2018 at 9:59am | IP Logged | 22 post reply

Just started THE LARRY SANDERS SHOW. Although Ive been aware of it for years, probably since it originally aired, I never had HBO and had never seen it. This program is wonderful. I had it in my personal queue for the past year, but after watching THE ZEN DIARIES OF GARRY SHANDLING over the weekend, I decided to go ahead and dive in. Im glad I did. Its fantastic!
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