Posted on January 8, 2009 | |
Pay attention, UK readers: this may be about a Canadian show, but it's going to be on FX (aka "The channel that gets all the good stuff but no one can get and no one watches") in the UK soon, so it affects you now.
The Border is Canada's good TV programme. An atypically conservative take on world affairs, it's a look at terrorism, crime, international relations, spies and other nefarious activities, all set to the backdrop of Canada's Immigration and Customs Security (ICS) agency. It does what 24 and Spooks does - except better and with a smaller cast.
So popular did it prove when it aired during the American writers' strike last January that it was re-commissioned for a second season while it was still airing, and a third one is on its way soon.
But since most of y'all won't be watching it for a while, I'll continue talking about it after the jump - and specifically, the second season finale.
Continue reading "Season finale: The Border (season two)"
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Posted on January 8, 2009 | |
In the US: Tuesdays, 9/8c, ABC
In the UK: E4, some time this year probably
It has to be said that Scrubs hasn't been what it was for some time. Originally, a comedy show about doctors that also looked at the more human side of having to cope with people who are ill and dying, over its last few seasons, it's become something of a cartoon, in which reality has been shoved aside in favour of silliness and cartoon-like behaviour.
The strangeness of Scrubs is that it was an ABC Studios production for NBC, a network that didn't really seem to know what to do with the programme anyway, seeming at times almost to have forgotten the show existed.
But after NBC dropped it with a literal, medieval fanfare finale last season, ABC picked it up and has decided to run with it. Will the change in management help bring Scrubs back to its former glory for its probably final season, or like a giant oil tanker, will it prove impossible to turn back on course at this late stage?
Continue reading "Review: Scrubs 8x1-8x2"
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Posted on January 7, 2009 | |
In the UK: Sunday 4th/Monday 5th January, 9pm, ITV1
While shows like Demons demonstrate that ITV1 still has somewhere to go to redeem itself with drama after a decade of predominantly awful output, something that we can probably all agree on is that ITV1 is the home of decent crime TV in Britain.
While the Beeb has restricted itself to anaemic period stuff, comfy escapism like Jonathan Creek, Inspector Lynley cobblers or excruciating rubbish like The Invisibles, ITV1 has been producing classics of modern, gritty crime fiction for decades, including the Prime Suspects, Cracker, Wire in the Blood and even The Bill. Okay Wallander was good, but for the most part, BBC1 has sucked, while ITV1 has done well.
Blimey though, has it really been nearly two decades since the first Prime Suspect. Doesn't time fly? I'm sure they'd be cranking out more episodes if only Helen Mirren hadn't decided to get old, curse her.
That might well be the thought Prime Suspect creator Lynda La Plante had when she was writing the novel Above Suspicion - while simultaneously being unable to get much stuff on TV other than one of those few ITV1 crime misfires, Trial and Retribution, and the slightly bland The Commander. "If only we could do Prime Suspect: The Early Years, hopefully with some hot young actress. Let me write that as a novel and see if they adapt it."
Hey presto, here it is. A two-part mini-series starring the exceedingly hot (and talented) Kelly Reilly as a young rookie DC hunting a serial killer. This one's going to run and run.
Continue reading "Review: Above Suspicion"