Saturday, April 08, 2017


A bunch of shows have just finished their latest season, or are about to (making way for new seasons of Fargo, Better Call Saul, etc.--such is the constant renewal of peak television).

The Walking Dead, as big as show as there is, even if viewership is down, just finished season seven. The main plot was about going to war with the new bad guy, Negan.  And after the finale--yep, they're going to war with Negan.  Was this season necessary?  Is this show necessary?

Colony finished season 2, and has been picked up for a third.  The show has given more indications of a global perspective on an Earth taken over (allegedly) by aliens, but the action remains almost entirely in the Los Angeles bloc, which is a sort of the equivalent of Vichy France, where there's a resistance, there are collaborators, and most live in fear.

It's a decent show, and I look forward to next season.  The central characters escaped from Los Angeles, which was going through complete rendition.  The show is created, in part, by Carlton Cuse of Lost.  Like Lost, it has constant action and lots of secrets, but a lot less complexity and substance.  Oh well, you can't have everything.

Finally, there's the Showtime's award-winning Homeland.  I remain a fan, but the show has never recaptured the power of its first season (and the first four episodes of season two where they resolved season 1).

But this latest season, its sixth, is its worst.  There's been sluggish action, but worse, it's gotten too silly.  The show has often exaggerated the power of terrorists, but that's understandable--that's how action stories tend to work.  And we know that what we're seeing is what some terrorists would do if they could.

But unless the finale on Sunday completely changes things, this season has gotten a bit absurd.  We now have, as far as I can tell, powerful forces in the CIA working with some Alex Jones sort of character to overthrow (through violence) the U.S. government.  This is a conspiracy worthy of Alex Jones himself.

Now don't get me wrong--I know the proud paranoia of partisans in our country, who think this group or that (almost always including the CIA, which has backed coups in foreign countries) is going to take over the government.  Right now, in fact, many are hoping Trump can be impeached for some conspiracy they believe landed him in the White House (and if somehow he is forced out, then both left and right can claim there was a coup).

Indeed, I remember otherwise intelligent people arguing, for various reasons, that Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama were all planning to keep running things after their term of office ended.

This is a common argument of pseudo-sophisticates. But to see a show play into the silliness of it, as if what they're doing is relevant and ripped from the headlines, is tiresome.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just watched two finales this weekend. The walking Dead- as to which I agree. Its getting tiresome. Of course, I never saw Season One so maybe I can go back and pick that one up. Otherwise too much inarticulate granting and violence.

I also saw- about 9 years after the fact the finale (well the final 6 episodes to) to The Wire (which series included at least 3 actors who went on to the Walking Dead) and that was thoroughly entertaining and while perhaps the plot got a little fanciful in the last season, it was highly addictive and even very funny (for some reason I found the profiler scene hilarious) although Littlefinger I did not buy as an Italian American mayor.

8:09 AM, April 10, 2017  
Blogger LAGuy said...

Some think the first season of The Walking Dead is the best because they burn through the plot so fast, not realizing the show is going to last forever. Compare to this season, where they took forever to get to nowhere.

As for The Wire, it's widely agreed the last season is its weakest. David Simon got too personal with his feelings about journalism, and--you're correct--his characters went a bit further than even they would go.

And most Wire fans wanted to know what Tommy Carcetti was doing in Westeros.

9:01 AM, April 10, 2017  

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