In the US: Mondays, 9/8c, Fox In the UK: Acquired by Sky 1/Sky 1 HD. Coming soon
'Gritty' seems to mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. To many, it means 'realistic' - that it depicts the seamier, less pleasant parts of life. To others, it just means 'looks a bit grimy'.
The Chicago Code - formerly called Ride Along - is gritty. A cop show set to a backdrop of corrupt Chicago city politics, it wants you to believe that it's gritty in the sense of realistic. But to be honest, although it has Shawn Ryan (The Shield, The Unit) as show runner and principal writer, in a post-Wire, post-Southland world, it doesn't really succeed - it just looks a bit grimy.
It's not half-bad and it features the likes of Jessica Beals, Jason Clarke (Brotherhood) and Delroy Lindo, but it's not as cutting edge as it likes to think it is. Here's a trailer, followed by a featurette in which you get to hear Clarke's normal Australian accent.
The Independent Film Channel isn't well known as a haven of comedy - more for earnestly liberal movies - but I'll tell you what is well known for comedy: Saturday Night Live (at least it used to be). So imagine what would happen if you married IFC with SNL.
Portlandia, that's what.
It's essentially a comedy sketch show set in the (supposedly) earnestly liberal city of Portland, Oregon, a place where Steve Buscemi has to buy a 14-part series of books about a woman's journey from a feminist book store in order to use the toilet and people have to investigate the farm their organic chicken has been reared in before they'll eat it in a restaurant. Executive-produced by Lorne Michaels and featuring in most of the roles SNL's Fred Armisen and the most underrated female guitarist of all time, according to Rolling Stone magazine, Carrie Brownstein - collectively known as ThunderAnt - Portlandia isn't 100% funny but it is one of the top two US comedies of the last year or so and if you like Flight of the Conchords, you'll probably like this, too.
Think of David E Kelley and one name immediately comes to mind, doesn't it? Wonder Woman.
Hang on. Scratch that. Remind me to use that intro in a year or so. Let's start again.
Think of David E Kelley and one name immediately comes to mind, doesn't it? Ally McBeal. Kelley, a former lawyer, was the creator of Ally McBeal and since finishing that show, has gone on to corner the quirky, largely female-oriented, lawyer show market, with programmes such as The Practice, Girls Club and Boston Legal.
Now, he's over at NBC with Oscar-winner Kathy Bates with - yep, you guessed it - a quirky, largely female-oriented, lawyer show that sees Bates playing Harriet Korn, one of the country's top patent lawyers, who finally realises that patent law is dull and decide to take up criminal law instead. Taking her secretary along for the ride, Korn sets up shop in a rough part of Cincinnati, where she quickly recruits Nate Corddry (Studio 60), one of her former patent law adversaries, to help defend universally ethnic alleged criminals against injustice - and sell shoes.
No really, they sell shoes as well. Told you it was quirky. Here's a trailer and a much more informative promo based on the original pilot, which co-starred Ben Chaplin instead of Nate Corddry.
About the blog
A UK media blog focusing on the best scripted TV from around the world, with daily news, views, exclusive reviews and good conversation. There's a bit of a bias towards the latest and greatest US TV, but we also cover Scandinavian, Canadian, European and Antipodean TV, as well as UK TV ranging from new Doctor Who to old Z Cars, and BBC4 to S4C.
Add in film, theatre, art, books, events, competitions and even weekly reviews of Wonder Woman comics, and you've (hopefully) got officially the fourth best blog on the web for media lovers. Oh yes, and there's The Barrometer, the ultimate guide to quality TV.
Praise for the blog Cision: fourth most important UK TV blog Blogging Edge: Blogger running Britain 2013
"For most of us watching the telly of an evening is a way to wind down and relax, but for Rob Buckley it’s his blogging bread and butter. With reviews of cult classics and up and coming US and Brit television shows, The Medium is Not Enough is fast becoming essential reading for TV buffs, with over 50,000 hits a month."
"The Medium Is Not Enough is a light-hearted look at TV, often from the US, but also from the UK. With varied, well-written content, the blog features healthy engagement and features well in search engines."
"Billing itself as 'officially the fourth most popular UK TV blog', there are several whimsical regulars here that could help it climb as high as number three…"
I'm Rob Buckley, a freelance journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of, although you might have heard me on Radio 5 Live's Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I've edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for trade magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider and the equally short-lived Death Ray and Filmstar magazines; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it "web site for urban hedonists" The Tribe. I'm freelance now and have contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network and TV Scoop.