Murder by Antler. 'True Detective' and 'Hannibal'

Watching the premiere of True Detective, I immediately thought it was sort of a rip-off of Hannibal's killer last season with the use of antlers. I was actually surprised more of the internets didn't mention anything…

Then I saw this from Bryan Fuller (Hannibal):
"Anybody who saw [the Stephen King TV miniseries] Salem’s Lot in 1979 where James Mason impaled that guy on the antlers, it’s probably all coming from that traumatic experience in our childhoods. So I imagine they probably saw the same thing that inspired the imagery in this show.” 
  Full quote and story at EW.

So, there you have it.


'Intelligence' on CBS: Thoughts on the premiere and how it compares to 'Almost Human'

Caught the premiere of Intelligence last night on CBS and am sad to say I was mildly disappointed.

Not to say I had very high expectations going into it. The whole premise of humans being privy to mass amounts of information/robot isn't exactly new… feels very Persons of Interest. Even in the first episode, it feels familiar. But maybe that's what they're going for…. it is CBS, after all.

Intelligence will undoubtedly be compared to Almost Human since in the batch of new shows, they are nearly identical in premise. Unlikely partners who have to work together, one having superhuman smarts. If that's the case, I worry about Intelligence. The pilot was no where near as good as AH, the chemistry between the partners wasn't as convincing and the move into a crime-of-the-week format seemed to happen immediately. AH on the other hand, used the first episode to set up the mythology of the show (which, sadly, they haven't revisited enough for my tastes). On Intelligence, the overarching mythology surrounding Sawyer Gabriel's wife (Ilana!!) seemed forced. Like they were mentioning it because they had to.

The one noticeable difference between AH and Intelligence is the tone, the latter being much darker. While I fault AH for relying too heavily on the procedural side and not revisiting the mythology from the first hour, at least it is fun to watch. As I watch Intelligence, I longed for shows like AH or SHIELD or Hawaii Five-O that mix action and fun. Sure, it's dark tone sets it apart… unfortunately I think Josh Holloway would really shine in a more relaxed atmosphere. The guy can throw a mean zinger - and a punch.

I also don't really understand what Gabriel's abilities are or how he got them or what their limits are. Can he read files on people? But how did he see that map? Can he read people's minds? It seems his 'intelligence' has no limits - which is discouraging. It also seems he has some sort of superhuman strength - also discouraging. Did I miss something in explaining his abilities? TV.com puts it best when they say:
"If he needs to open an electronic lock while in the custody of some nasty Pakistani militants, as was the case in the show's cold open, voila! [mind connects to Pakistani hideout Wi-fi, hacks Pakistani security controls] And then *click*, it's open! However, if he needs to open up some satellite imaging (i.e. Google Maps) to detect that he's running toward a dead-end cliff, as he also should have done later in the cold open, then he'll forget that he's got Google Glass in his brain."
Bright spots on the series will be Josh Holloway and Marg Helgenberger. And the one and only Fulton Reed if he (SPOILER ALERT!) sticks around as a bad guy. And of course, the twist and introduction of a possible adversary in the last minutes is promising.


Why I gave up on 'Hostages'

Tonight, the last two episodes were airing. I "watched" one ("watched" as in, sat on my phone the whole time and had no idea what was going on) and then went ahead and deleted the other.

I'll have you know. I rarely do that. Unlike most things in my personal life, TV shows I generally see all the way through. Seriously, I'm still watching Revolution.

I watch(ed) a lot of bad shows that were supposed to be good. Once Upon A Time (the original and … in Wonderland), 666 Park Ave, Terra Nova, Awake, The Playboy Club, even the DOA Mocking Bird Lane. It wasn't a shock to me that any of these shows were cancelled. (Or, in the case of those still on the air… cancel them already! They're terrible!) There was something about them - the bad acting, improbable plot, bad storytelling, bad CGI, characters I didn't care about. Something that I knew from the beginning wouldn't last.

Hostages wasn't like that for me. The pilot was so good. The roster of actors was impressive. There's plenty of political drama hitting high notes these days - Homeland, Scandal, House of Cards. The show had all the right elements.

Yet, it fell apart.

Somewhere along the way, I lost interest. I think it was about the time that the black guy / Presbo from The Wire / President's younger sister or in law or whoever showed up. The plot really thickened. Too many people. Too improbable. And that roster of incredible actors? Were they phoning it in? Because it was so over the top.

I just couldn't handle it anymore. There's too much good TV on these days.


House of Cards S1 Binge Watch

I finally binge watched House of Cards S1 over the holidays and - whoa. You people weren't kidding. This show is good.

I feel sorry for everyone who compares Spader on The Blacklist to Kevin Spacey in Cards. Sure, Spader is great… but he is nothing compared to Spacey. He's creepy, maniacal, but he's not your typical antihero.

Tony Soprano ushered in Dexter Morgan, Walter White and Don Draper. Bad men that we wanted to win. We love them, despite everything. But Spacey's Frank Underwood… I'm not so sure. I'm not sure I want him to win. To succeed in his plots. In fact, I think I want him to be taken down… but I'm not sure of an adversary who'll be able to do it.

Certainly not Kate Mara, who plays upcoming journalist Zoe Barnes. I'm not convinced she can set aside her personal attraction/feelings for Underwood to go through with his take down.

And can we talk a minute about Robin Wright, Frank's wife? How perfect is she? Perhaps she's the antihero in all of this. I cherish her moments of strength, conviction, happiness with the former lover/photographer. And her clothes. All her clothes. Oh, and her haircut is fierce.

Anywho. Season 2 promos are here, and is on Netflix Feb 14th. Happy Valentine's Day y'all.

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I need to move, apparently.  


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