It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week
Previously on TMINE
It’s been another reviews-light week this week, thanks principally to there being a bank holiday and there not being much to watch. Plus I’ve been busy. However, things are going to be a little quieter for me next week and there’s at least a couple of new shows worth watching coming up, so I should have some reviews for you in June. Hoorah!
What TMINE is currently watching…
I’m a little further into season 3 of Baron Noir (France: Canal+; UK: Amazon), but not yet done, so hold your horses on that. I also watched Charlie Brooker’s Antiviral Wipe (UK: BBC Two), which was welcome but not totally different from all previous wipes. It was moderately depressing, since I’d given up watching the news of late on the general grounds of its general depressingness, so I got to watch all the depressing things I’d missed. But there was at least an element of optimism in there and it was nice to see the return of Cunk.
Could have done with some Adam Curtis, though.
Next on TMINE
Usual lockdown rules, even though lockdown is easing: I’m going to try to watch all of these but there’s a fair chance I may end up watching none because Life.
I haven’t got around to watching Anna Kendrick’s new thing, Love Life (US: HBO Max), but have every intention of catching that over the weekend. Lovely wife has expressed an interest in watching Steve Carrell’s Space Force (Netflix), so there’s a good chance I’ll have seen at least one episode of that before Monday, but hopefully more. Who knows? Maybe it’ll even be a Boxset?
That’s it from the US, though*, but Australia will be offering Cold War thriller Operation Buffalo (Australia: ABC) on Sunday, so that’ll be on the line-up, too.
* I really need to check What time, TMINE, to see if there are only foreign shows on Netflix that I’ve missed, don’t I? Because if I don’t read TMINE, who on Earth else will, hey?
After the jump…
After the jump is the diminishing list of regulars: What We Do In The Shadows and new arrival Star Girl, as well as the season finales of both One Lane Bridge and Mystery Road. But Apple TV+’s Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet made a surprise guest appearance with a quarantine episode, so I watched that as well. All of those in a mo.
What TMINE watched this week
Shows I’m watching but not necessarily recommending
One Lane Bridge (New Zealand: TVNZ)
1x6 – Answers
The episode title is Answers and answers we got. The man ate a gecko, talking to a silent dead person and suddenly he knew whodunnit! Handy gift – I can see why they waited four episodes before allowing him to use it. Crime solved, but 90% of everything turned out to be set-up for a notional second season.
The season has mostly been a mass of procrastination seemingly mainly designed to have much of the cast of The Almighty Johnsons make cameos as characters similar to but (for copyright purposes) not identical to the ones they played in said series. But despite that, with winning leads and the occasional bit of spookiness, the show has been promising enough and now has enough of a strong foundation that I would still tune into that second season, if it happens.
Probably not worth your time watching, other than for the first and last episodes, and the mystery itself wasn’t that exciting. But if there is a second season, that might be worth tuning in for without bothering with the first season.
Stargirl (US: DC Universe)
1×2 – STRIPE
Another piece of family-oriented superheroics, with our heroine getting to grips with her mighty staff (and vice versa). More interesting is Luke Wilson’s backstory and STRIPE. It’s fluffy, unchallenging, superheroic fun, but maybe that’s all we’re capable of watching right now.
Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet (Apple TV+)
1×10 – Quarantine
So lot’s of shows have been doing quarantine episodes, but if you watch one quarantine episode, this is the one to watch, being the best executed, the best written and the funniest. It also had a beautiful moment of pathos towards the end that marvellously undercut the schmaltz of Parks and Recreation‘s similar effort.
Particularly impressive is the episode’s ability to actually continue with the show’s various plots while in quarantine, and to also make new jokes, while still being true to both the characters and the situation. There’s not many shows that can get jokes out of naked Zoom calls, how long it takes to compile code, old people trying to use technology and the misery of quarantine.
Do you know, I think Mythic Quest might now be one of my favourite shows?
Mystery Road (Australia: ABC; UK: BBC Four)
2×6 – What You Do Now
A pretty satisfying and thrilling conclusion to the season, particularly the absolute denouement with the bad guy and the awarding of the hat.
It’s been a little empty of the social analysis of previous efforts, although it did in later episodes have a good go at aboriginal cultural politics. However, Sofia Helin’s archaeological strand has been the show’s big weakness. Not only did it turn out to be completely irrelevant to the main plot, it was some shockingly bad archaeology that almost made me turn off the show completely.
Nevertheless, Pedersen’s been a fantastic lead as always, the cinematography has been stunning and it’s been vastly more exciting and warm than the usual Scandi Noirs that fill our screens.
What We Do In The Shadows (US: FX; UK: BBC Two)
2×7 – The Return
A slightly unwelcome return for a character (or two) from the first season. It’s not exactly a laugh riot, but there are some decent gags ((spoiler alert) vampire Elvis), and some great Colin moments from social media, at least. I do wonder if maybe the writers have a better, more acute grasp of the comedy of boredom and the mundane than of the more obvious, OTT nature of the vampires…
2×8 – Collaboration
The worst episode of the series so far. We have a rupture between a vampire and his familiar when an old familiar shows up; meanwhile, Matt Berry and wife are trying to write songs together. If that sounds flimsy, that’s because it is. Not many laughs either, and most of them are from Colin (again).