Posted on March 13, 2009 | |
In the US: Mondays, 10/9c, ABC
There's a long and honourable tradition on television of mystery authors going out and fighting crime. Obviously, back in the 80s, there was Murder She Wrote, more appropriately entitled Large Scale Holocaust She Wrote or Little Old Lady of Death - Don't Let Her Come Near You.
But in the 70s, there was Department S and spin-off Jason King, which saw the original Austin Powers, novelist Jason King, solve crimes the police couldn't; Edward Woodward's crime writer Maxwell Beckett cowered his way around murder scenes in the 90s with the help of his more able assistant, Nikki, in Over My Dead Body; and in the noughties, we have forensic anthropologist-come-author, Temperance Brennan, helping David Boreanaz in Bones.
There's probably more, but I can't be arsed to list them: fancy a go anyone as part of a weekend meme?
Now comes Rick Castle (Firefly/Serenity/Drive/PG Porn's Nathan Fillion), a bad-boy novelist with extreme writer's block who's unfortunately just killed off his lucrative main character. Fortunately (?), a killer starts copying scenes from his books and he finds himself having to help the police with their enquiries. Except the police happens to be attractive fan Kate Beckett (Heroes' Stana Katic).
Suddenly, he feels his creative juices flowing again. Cue Moonlighting for the 21st century?
Continue reading "Review: Castle 1x1"
Read other posts about: CSI, Heroes
Posted on March 12, 2009 | |
In the UK: Tuesdays, 10.30pm, BBC3
I did have a premonition this was going to happen. Ages ago (2007, I think), I caught an episode of Big Brother's Big Mouth hosted by James Corden and Matthew Horne. It was appalling. Absolutely appalling. I tried to forget it altogether.
So when Gavin & Stacey came around, I had no recollection of having seen either of the two before. It was only when reading about their new BBC3 sketch show, Horne & Corden, and their BBBM gig got mentioned, that it all came flooding back in its horrible glory.
"Oh no. Please don't let it be like that," I prayed. "Gavin & Stacey was brilliant. Surely they've learned and moved on. Surely it'll be funny."
No. It really wasn't. In fact, it was so unfunny and joke-free, lovely wife actually fell asleep in the middle of it.
Not a good sign.
Continue reading "Review: Horne & Corden 1x1"
Posted on March 11, 2009 | |
In the US: Sundays, 10pm/9c, AMC
In the UK: Probably FX again
Breaking Bad is one of those TV shows that no matter how hard you try to describe it properly, no amount of description really gives it justice.
Essentially, the plot is this: a brilliant high school chemistry teacher (Walter White, played by Bryan Cranston, the dad in Malcolm in the Middle, here almost unrecognisable) discovers he has cancer and that even if he survives the disease, the medical bills will mortgage his family's future. So, despite the fact his brother is a DEA agent, he decides to get into the lucrative crystal meth business, making the purest, best crystal meth on the market using his advanced geek skills to safeguard his family's future.
See? Doesn't sound promising, does it..
Yet the show, now starting its second season, is one of those quality shows that's allowing AMC to make a mark in drama after years of re-runs and cowboy movies. It looks at issues like the state of healthcare in the US, High Schools and indeed the drugs trade, giving the probably quite comfortable viewer a glimpse of the scary side of the drugs business, without the insulation from reality, make-believe and training the characters get in other shows - what would you do if you were trying to sell drugs, how long would it be before you got killed or had to kill, and what effect would it have on you, your loved ones and your relationships?
Now season two's here after the first season was curtailed by the writers' strike, and things are even darker than before, if that's even possible.
Continue reading "Review: Breaking Bad 2x1"