It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week
As I revealed on Monday, since…
- I’m just back from my holidays
- I haven’t yet caught up with all the regulars in the TMINE viewing queue
- I’m still operating my “if it starts in August, I (probably) won’t review it rule”
…this week’s WHYBW will be briefer than normal and largely thrown over to you, gentle reader (which is ostensibly the point of WHYBW anyway).
So please, let everyone know what you’ve been watching of late and whether it’s any good. If you’ve never commented here before and have been reading for a while, now would be a good time to introduce yourself!
However, I have tried to watch a few new shows over the past month and while most of them are boxsets that I’ll be reviewing at some point in the next few weeks in their own entries, I thought I’d throw out a few words on both Netflix’s Another Life and Channel 4’s Crashing after the jump.
Just a note that although I’ve also just finishing watching the first episode of Amazon’s The Boys and I’ve not properly warmed to yet, I’ve just realised that the Superman-esque main superhero is played by Banshee‘s Antony Starr. Plus as Karl Urban’s cod-English accent is highly entertaining, I’m going to hold off reviewing that until I’ve a few more episodes under my belt, at least.
Another Life (Netflix)
Astronaut Niko Breckinridge is focused on searching the world for alien intelligence. She leads a crew that is on a mission to explore the genesis of an alien artefact that has been found on Earth. As Breckinridge and her young crew investigate, they face unimaginable dangers on what may end up being a one-way mission.
So this feels like an attempt to do Arrival and Nightflyers on a low Canadian budget by drafting in Battlestar Galactica‘s Katee Sackhoff, Shameless‘s Justin Chatwin, Doctor Who‘s Samuel Anderson, Supergirl‘s Tyler Hoechlin and a whole bunch of other people from better science-fiction TV shows.
Episode 1 is quite a dull affair that never ever gets into gear, despite a big bunch of science-fiction spanners being thrown in its general direction. There are attempts to do hard sci-fi that largely flounder thanks to some pretty ropey CGI and a script that demands everyone either bicker or be completely idiotic. Want to probe an alien artefact? Why not play pigeon calls to it then? Duh.
With Sackhoff on board, we were hoping for something for a lot better and while we’d like to try watching at least episode 2 to see if it gets any better, somehow I suspect we’ll never really find the time to even discover what the show was even trying to do – assuming it really was trying to do something.
That’s what happens in the age of peak TV if you have a weak first episode.
Crashing (UK: Channel 4)
Phoebe Waller-Bridge being all the rage right now thanks to Killing Eve and Fleabag and Lovely Wife being a big fan, we decided to wind back time a bit to ‘before she was famous’ and catch one of her earlier attempts at writing and starring in a TV show.
Channel 4’s Crashing sees Waller-Bridge playing one of six twentysomething ‘property guardians‘ living in a disused hospital together. She’s initially visiting her childhood friend and his fiancée, but it soon becomes apparent that his hitherto secret feelings for her haven’t dissipated over the years. Oh dear. Awkward.
There are hints of Fleabag in Waller-Bridge’s character (“Is it okay if I watch lesbian porn, get off on it and then hate myself?”), but for the most part, this is a far more down to earth, ‘real’, conventional affair that lacks the slightly more fantastical qualities of her newer shows. Most of the characters were gits – particularly the estate agent – and it wasn’t really any funny, even if it there were obvious elements of smartness. As a result, we could see why it never really took off, as we didn’t get further than episode 1.