Jay

What is the last Television series you watched?

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Quint. Apart from the Full HD production values and filming. How different is Mad Men from 80 or 90's Aaron Spelling prime time soaps?

I just don't see why it's so brilliant.

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I haven't really the time to go into much detail about it (believe me, I'd love to), but there's sooooo much more to Mad Men than its slick aesthetics and classy swagger. Like The Sopranos before it, these are multilayered characters with often surprising facets of detail hidden beneath the surface. Don Draper is the man with the plan, the ever reliable suave maker and shaker on the face of it, but damn, he's revealed to me to be possibly the most fascinatingly troubled protagonist I've ever known in a tv show - perhaps even moreso than than the rather obvious mind fuck that was Tony Soprano. Dare I say, I find Don an even more mesmerising portrayal of 'damaged goods' than the seriously accomplished Tony.

But there's even more to Mad Men than that, much more. Draper's secretary Peggy is the pitch-perfect naive young kid who reveals herself to be more capable than she looks, making her vain attempts at a romance with Pete Campbell all the more heartbreakingly touching and beautifully observed - I'd have found it difficult to feel any pity at all for a crying wet blanket, but Peggy deserves better. That's two of my favourite characters, but indeed the nuances of each character are plentiful and always riveting.

And then you have the sublime editing, the eating and the drinking, oh the drinking... The restaurant montages, the banter, the smoke, the chink of cocktail glasses, the music... I'm just in friggin' heaven when I watch this show.

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Sounds too AlexCremers for my liking.

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Keep in mind that I nearly always vehemently disagree with every word that leaves Alex's mouth.

Steef, it takes about three episodes to "get into it". It's slow and vague at first, but give it a chance to get going. Plus, it must be watched from the very beginning first.

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Maybe not, but Mad Men is the kind of show that you just need to watch to find out. It doesn't really fall into any "genre" so it's hard to describe to a layman. Yes, it is a period drama, but such description says nothing at all. The most amazing thing about it is that they make a first class drama out of a such an uninteresting premise and subject (like The Wire, where the cat & mouse chase is probably the least important thing). What I can say is that it's a grown-up television, with fantastic production values, writing and acting. What more could you want?

But this is probably even better:

Now THIS is something unlike most television.

Karol

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Treme, a show I know nothing about. I didn't watch that trailer - I prefer to go in blind.

I'll look into it.

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It won't take you by the hand and it's a slow burn. If these two things won't turn you off, then you should be fine. ;)

Karol

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I just wiki'd the outline and I was surprised when it turned out to be nothing to do with David Cronenberg :/

Glad I got that out the way.

Anyway, it does sound sort of interesting. It'll take some time, but I'll get onto it eventually.

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It's a twin to The Wire. That show was about Baltimore, this one is about New Orleans. They are very much alike (some of the same case, writers, directors), but Treme is smaller and more personal.

Karol

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The editing in relation to the writing is what fascinates me about me about Mad Men. The characters are terrible people, but they're incredibly well-written terrible people. It doesn't follow a formula. Even though LOST is my favorite show, I knew exactly when every episode was about to end. It followed a formula, same with Scrubs. It's not a detriment, but Mad Men leaves me thinking about why the hell an episode ended the way it did.

I'm excited for Season 5, despite Season 4 being my least favorite so far.

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Sounds too AlexCremers for my liking.

Indeed, it's not for the Steefs or the Joeys of the world. You have CSI Miami, Castle, Lie To me, Bones, Hawai Five-O, The Mentalist and reruns of The A Team and Lost.

grown-up

That's the most essential difference. That's why Dustin goes TV. Correction, that's why Dustin goes quality TV.

Crocs, did you ever try HBO's Big Love? I love the show. Again, great dialogue and acting. Bill Paxton is simply stunning. Too bad they only released the first 2 seasons for Europe while there are 5 in total.

And while talking about great acting, Breaking Bad (AMC) has some of the best acting I've seen on a screen in a very long time. I can't wait for the third season to arrive on DVD.

Game of Thrones

Not available around here (like Treme) but I will put it on my list.

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I'm excited for Season 5, despite Season 4 being my least favorite so far.

Jeez, I'm miles behind.

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Crocs, did you ever try HBO's Big Love? I love the show. Again, great dialogue and acting. Bill Paxton is simply stunning. Too bad they only released the first 2 seasons for Europe while there are 5 in total.

Never heard of it. But read a synopsis and it might be good.

Karol

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Has anyone watched American Horror Story? A friend at work told me the writing level was up there with LOST and it got me curious. The premise turns me off, but I'll definitely give it a shot.

I watched the pilot and was totally hooked! Was it the best pilot I ever saw, nah, not even close. Was it uniquely and interestingly shot and edited? Definitely - unlike anything I had scene before on TV in that regard. It left me wanting more and I wanted to immediately continue watching. But the GF didn't like it, so I have to find time I can watch it on my own, which hasn't happened yet. But I plan to soon.

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I've been rewatching all episodes of Twin Peaks in the last few days. I can't intectualize my opinion, but I'm still convinced this is the best TV series I have ever seen

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The Gold box set contains the correct version of the Pilot, right?

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I was too young to watch Twin Peaks when it originally aired, but since Netflix has just launched here with a free trial on just about every device you can think of (pc, games consoles, tablets, phones) I thought I'd watch the pilot. Didn't realise it was feature length.

Well that's torn it - now I'm gonna have to commit to the whole thing. It's certainly a show of its time, but that didn't stop it from being really good.

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Didn't that show become ridiculous after a while?

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Depends on what one's definition of "ridiculous" is. It's David Lynch, so I've got my special mind fuck glasses on in preparation for that stuff. If the execution's sound I can be highly receptive to that weird surreal shit. It's been ages since anything like that has come along, so I'm sort of craving for it.

But no spoilers, please.

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All I know is it's one of the highest rated shows of all time and the very meaning of "cult" television. Endlessly parodied (I've already smiled at stuff I recognised) and extremely influential, but since it's Lynch - the style is what stands out most. By far.

It gets under your skin in a most uncomfortable way, yet I'm morbidly riveted.

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I was feeling under the weather, so I dug out my copy of Robin Hood S1 and started re-watching the series. I remember watching the series on BBC America and enjoying it, but tuning out just before the first season's finale. My dad kept watching the series after that, but he was disappointed with the finale.

But the first season is still enjoyable. It's hugely anachronistic (honestly who would mention "Lord of the Dance" back then?), formulaic, the cast looks too well-groomed, and predictable. That doesn't stop it from being enjoyable and the strength of the cast elevates the show enormously. I love the brassy Korngold-meets-Zimmer theme, but it does get tiring after a while.

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Know who Charlie Brooker is? Ever heard of Newswipe?

If you can access BBC iPlayer watch this:

http://www.bbc.co.uk...isode/b018l74r/

It's a hilarious roundup of the years events by possibly the best satirist in the UK :thumbup:

Depends on what one's definition of "ridiculous" is. It's David Lynch, so I've got my special mind fuck glasses on in preparation for that stuff. If the execution's sound I can be highly receptive to that weird surreal shit. It's been ages since anything like that has come along, so I'm sort of craving for it.

But no spoilers, please.

However good Charlie Brooker is, Quint, no-one can beat Chris Morris for satire, and I suspect that you know that...

As for "Twin Peaks": I envy you, because you have it all in front of you - Ronette Pulaski, the Log Lady, Killer Bob, unspeakable things being done to a cherry stick, Angelo Badalamenti's score, the smiling bag - the whole nine yards.

Just sit back and enjoy what is arguably the best thing that Lynch had done since "The Elephant Man".

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Awesome! Now I actually feel privileged.

Also, smart kids don't do "cake" ;)

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Nearly finished Twin Peaks now, and I don't want it to end. Can't believe I left it twenty years before even starting it.

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Believe it or not, but I watched the show just last year. Loved it. Even the dated look adds certain charm.

Karol

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They have been repeating Seinfeld over here.

Fun, but I now know why comedian Jerry Seinfled continued with his stand-up career instead of cashing in and doing movies.

He ABSOLUTELY cannot act!

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Doesn't hurt the series though. Seinfeld said he can't look serious on the set because the real actors are so much funnier than he is.

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yes, he constantly look like he's about to burst into a smile, even when he's supposed to be shocked, angry or surprised.

It definitely works for the character he is playing. But I can't imagine Seinfeld actually showing genuine emotions.

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I disagree, I think David is quite the naturalistic actor. Not sure he has range, but I find his Curb work to be often very realistic and believable.

On the subject of Curb, we're up to season 6 and it's rather mediocre. I hope 7 gets it back on track.

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It did hurt Woody Allen's film (Whatever Works) from time to time. Not that much though. Most people will agree that with Larry David it's about his persona and not his acting. A lot of film critics thought Allen made the wrong choice by casting David. Allen's lines were too long for him to deliver convincingly. It bothered me too, especially when he was talking into the camera (addressing the viewer).

Alex

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Judging by his 'role' in The Producers, I think he'd be perfect as Fagin, or Scrooge. He often embellishes his Curb character with theatrical characteristics which would translate well into those sorts of roles.

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I disagree, I think David is quite the naturalistic actor. Not sure he has range, but I find his Curb work to be often very realistic and believable.

On the subject of Curb, we're up to season 6 and it's rather mediocre. I hope 7 gets it back on track.

Season 6 introduced Leon, how can you not love him!?

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He's the best thing about it, but the whole thing about giving his family a home is really getting on my nerves. Curb works best when it deals with scenarios which might happen in real life and feel real, but the shit he takes (in his own home) from that chic from ID4 and the fact that his wife often sides with her really irritates me. It's crossed into unbelievable bullshit territory.

I hope they get written out in the next season.

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