It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week
This week’s reviews
With the unofficial ‘week of boxsets’ over, TMINE’s been back to a slightly more normal pace. Last week’s Orange Thursday covered Long Shot (2019) and Mary Poppins Returns (2018), while Boxset Tuesday this week covered Austro-German Bron/Broen (The Bridge) adaptation Der Pass (Pagan Peak).
Tune in on Monday for a chance to win Der Pass on DVD, BTW.
However, that’s it for normal pace. Fall season 2019’s about to hit us, everyone. Brace yourselves – incoming…
What’s coming this week
Tomorrow is Orange Thursday and as of yet, I’ve not watched a single movie. It’s not looking good is it, but I’ll try to sneak one in tonight.
Boxset Monday is almost certainly going to be Netflix’s multi-country anthology interrogation show Criminal. However, après ça, le déluge, as it’s new-show time.
I can’t say exactly which days the reviews will come and whether they’ll be rolled into next week’s WHYBW, but coming next week, I’m hoping to subject my eyeballs to: Bob ♥ Abishola (CBS), All Rise (CBS), Prodigal Son (Fox), Bluff City Law (NBC), Mixed-ish (ABC), Emergence (ABC), Stumptown (ABC), Creepshow (Shudder), The Unicorn (CBS), Perfect Harmony (NBC), Carol’s Second Act (CBS), Sunnyside (NBC) and Evil (CBS).
I won’t lie to you – there might be some slippage with that schedule, perhaps into the following week, and other things may suffer. But I’ll do my best.
It’s the usual usuals after the jump: כפולים (False Flag), Flateyjargátan (The Flatey Enigma), Glitch, Pennyworth and Titans. However, on top of that, Mr InBetween has made his return. There’s lovely, hey?
I’ll also have a few words to say about Netflix’s The I-Land. Will they be kind words or harsh words, you may wonder? Well, either it was the best Netflix show I’ve ever seen or it was the absolute worst. Have a guess which.
All of that, after the jump.
The I-Land (Netflix)
A group of strangers wake up on a mysterious desert island. None of them can remember who they are, not even their names. How did they get there, who are they and what’s going on?
So, I tried watching episode one of this to prep for a full Boxset review. Maybe this is the new Lost. Or Persons Unknown.
I think I got about five minutes into this before deciding it was just the worst. I mean, you wake up on a desert island, you don’t remember who you are, but then you espy a seashell next to you. So what do you do?
News team – assemble! You blow the seashell, obviously, to summon everyone to you.
We then get two women bickering, one with a gun, one without. Menacing woman threatens other woman. Badly. Other woman takes gun off her, pointing out the safety catch is on. “What kind of person must you be to know that?” asks Kate Bosworth (for it is she).
So, I gave up.
The next day, I thought I’d give it another go, just to be fair.
Anyway, they all gather together, this group, and then one notices that they all have names stitched in the backs of their otherwise identical shirts. “I can guess what name’s in yours,” says Under the Dome woman who isn’t Rachelle Lefevre.
“It’s probably what I would have chosen for you, too,” says Bosworth.
Nope. That’s that. I’m done. Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner. We have the worst Netflix TV show ever.
In case you’re wondering if I pre-judged, The Guardian has a fuller article entitled: “Netflix’s castaway thriller is not a spoof. It really is this bad.”
You have been warned.
Shows I’m watching but not necessarily recommending
Flateyjargátan (The Flatey Enigma) (Iceland: RÚV; UK: BBC Alba)
Not as much time spent on the mysterious riddle, although just enough to keep my interest. Instead, it’s mostly about our heroine trying to hide her son from her police detective former ex. Big revelations at the end, obviously.
It’s all very well done, despite the never-ending plot crutch of the failing motor boat. But this could go in several directions thematically, not all of which I’m interested in. However, at just four episodes airing once a week on Fridays, it’s no big problem to keep watching. BBC Four could certainly learn a thing or two from BBC Alba, I reckon.
Pennyworth (US: Epix; UK: StarzPlay)
1×4 – Lady Penelope – 1×5 – Shirley Bassey
In which we return to familiar Avengers territory, with our hero (and new heroine Martha Kane) arriving in a quiet English village entirely populated by bad guys, including Anna Chancellor. It’s all glorious fun, despite the untimely death of one character. Still, you can’t have everything.
Plus it’s also worth noting that the news broadcasts are now making it clear that either the Allies didn’t win the Second World War or there never was one, in this parallel reality, since the Nazis now runs big chunks of the continent, if not all of it. Interesting, huh?
The recommended list
כפולים (False Flag) (Israel: Channel 2; UK: Fox UK)
Sean doesn’t quite come into his own this week, the good guys are starting to look a bit silly and we’re not really any nearer to any answers. But quite exciting, lots of chases and excitement, and we finally have some other characters meet up. Next week looks like it’ll advance the narrative considerably, though.
One thought: why is it “the Jewish network”? It’s a nice element of human intelligence, but is that a mistranslation (it sounded like she might be saying ‘orthdox’, not Jewish) or is there something about chief Mossad guy I’m missing?
Episode reviews: Initial
Glitch (Australia: ABC; UK: Netflix)
After stalling last week, the plot advances again. Some deliciously creepy moments, too, and one fascinating bit of dialogue about (spoiler alert) Golgotha, too. But it does feel like they’re juggling a few too many characters, to the extent that some are a bit light when it comes to screen time.
Mr InBetween (Australia: Showcase)
2×1 – Shoulda Tapped
One of Australia’s best – and funniest (and darkest) – crime dramas returns surprisingly soon after its surprising good first season. Everything’s more or less as it was before, with our ‘hero’ still teaching other crims the values of professionalism and respect, while subtly undermining his group therapy. It’s perhaps not quite as zingy or as novel as the first season, but it’s early days yet and it’s still confident and funny.
The best bit is, of course, his reaction to the two silly-billies in the car, but his interactions with Damon Herriman are still worth tuning in for, as is his experience with a BJJ teenage girl.
Titans (US: DC Universe; UK: Netflix)
2×2 – Rose
And we’re into the season proper, with what should have been the season opener, were it not for last week’s tactical mistake. It bears all the hallmarks of that mistake, too, with a big revelation that’s in no way a revelation, since it was in last week’s extra footage.
That said, a much better effort, giving us new pairings. It’s also odd to get what feels like a backstory-retcon dump about the previous Titans, including Aqualad et al, since it feels largely at variance with what the first season hinted at. It works and is engrossing, but it does cross a few brain wires in the process.
Good to see Donna Troy kicking some arse. She’s apparently only half-human now. Cough, cough, ret-con, cough, cough.
Episode reviews: Initial