What have you been watching? Including The Wheel of Time

Wheel of Time

It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week

Why won’t the pain stop?

That’s this week’s common TV theme, since I’ve been catching up on Dopesick (US: Hulu; UK: Disney+) and I tried watching The Wheel of Time (Amazon).

The former, which looks at the origin of the opioid addiction epidemic in the US, continues to be both exceptionally good and disturbing. I can’t really add much to my original review, since the next episodes merely continue the story that started in episode one. But the acting’s great, the direction is great, the writing’s great. It’s downright terrifying, too.

The latter, however… Oh boy.

Now… I really am not a fan of fantasy books in general. Or fantasy TV shows. But I managed to make it through an entire season of The Shannara Chronicles and two episodes of The Witcher, and I’ve watched some good fantasy movies in my time, too, so it’s not like I’m totally allergic to them.

But Holy Hell, this was just awful. Painful awfulness of a new, mind-numbing level. I knew from the outset it was going to be bad, thanks to a voiceover explaining the plot in which basically bad things have happened in some medieval time and it was down to some magic ladies to fix things.

“Moiraine, a member of a magical organization, takes five young people on a journey, believing that one of them might be the reincarnation of the Dragon, a powerful individual prophesied to save the world or destroy it.”


But I held out hope that having Rosamund Pike star in the show might make it better somehow. She couldn’t. It’s just so bad. So astonishingly dull! So many young actors who just can’t act reciting lines that remind you that someone’s parents wasted a lot of money sending their child to a film school to learn how to write. Every single thing that happened, every image, every design choice and everything anyone said was just the worst cliché of the genre.

If you make it to the end of the episode, I’ll assume that you’ve genuinely got nothing better to do with your life or that you’ve been paralysed, stuck propped up in bed facing the TV and that you genuinely couldn’t switch the channel, no matter how much you wanted to. Those are the only reasons. Really.

If this trailer doesn’t make you break out in hives, I’ll assume that you’ve taken an anti-histamine pill recently.

Still, at least Hawkeye starts on Disney+ on Wednesday. That might numb the pain.

But what have you been watching?


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; 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. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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