Jay

Fargo (TV Series)

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The FCC doesn't regulate basic cable, either.

I didn't mean to imply that they did, which is why I pointed out that HBO doesn't have advertisers to worry about. By implication, this was meant to reinforce why cable still needs to cut back at times.

What is more interesting is that I recall reading an article where even HBO was worried about the sex and violence of certain shows because although they could provide even more explicit material, they choose not to out of concern of losing membership.

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It fascinates me, I find some of the decision-making pretty bizarre ... for example I really don't understand why they think the Walking Dead's audience are fine with seeing zombies uber-gruesomely chow down on someone's innards but assume that if a character seeing same says 'FUCK ME!' in response, they'll be terribly offended.

Weird.

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The american censorship model of allowing incredibly brutal violence and graphic gore but not innocent naked flesh has never made sense to me or many other people. But it will probably take a long, long time to change still.

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I really don't understand why they think the Walking Dead's audience are fine with seeing zombies uber-gruesomely chow down on someone's innards but assume that if a character seeing same says 'FUCK ME!' in response, they'll be terribly offended.

Oddly enough, this affected The Walking Dead in a very specific way. There is a quote in the comics where a variation of that word is used to great effect, and they used it as the last line in the season 4 finale , but had to change a particular word to "screwing". The show runner Scott Gimple mentioned that they would have loved to use the real phrase and actually considered it (they almost filmed it) but decided against it since it would never had made it based AMC's approval board.

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Yea I don't get why the makers of any show airing on network tv or basic cable don't film things they way they want, and then make the compromised version for air and have the unrated version available on DVD/Blu. Oh well.

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I greatly enjoyed the first two episodes of Fargo.

Like the movie, it's an odd thing, as the story is pretty incredible, and they tell it with little and great bits of humor, yet you feel wrong laughing watching it, and enjoying watching it, when you remember it's based on actual facts.

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I greatly enjoyed the first two episodes of Fargo.

Like the movie, it's an odd thing, as the story is pretty incredible, and they tell it with little and great bits of humor, yet you feel wrong laughing watching it, and enjoying watching it, when you remember it's based on actual facts.

Fairly sure this isn't actually based on fact. The film wasn't (closing credits have the usual 'fictitious' spiel).

Anyway, I watched episode 2 this evening and loved it. Everyone is so perfectly cast. I can feel it slowly building up to something revealing Nygaard's actions.

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Yea I don't get why the makers of any show airing on network tv or basic cable don't film things they way they want, and then make the compromised version for air and have the unrated version available on DVD/Blu. Oh well.

Yeah. Some network shows get away with being censored, though, like Arrested Development. But then they kept that shit on DVD. Why?!

Family Guy gets away with a lot too. Comedy Central lets Matt Stone and Trey Parker do whatever they want, although I believe Tom Cruise got the scientology episode banned from ever being shown on air again.

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I believe Tom Cruise got the scientology episode banned from ever being shown on air again.

Not even remotely true. Where do you come up with these things?

The only episode Comedy Central hasn't aired again (or at least didn't air again for a while) was the second part of the two part episode about showing a drawing of Muhammed.

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It's not based on actual events. That's only built into the beginning for effect. Cinematic license.

:P

It could still have been based on facts as I wrote, thus not wholly true yet rooted in actual events (mixed together, exaggerated, ...); very weird things do happen.

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Just watched the last episode of this. Great stuff! Mostly.

At first I made the mistake of watching it alongside True Detective (alternating between the two every episode or two), and I think Fargo suffered by comparison. I finished True Detective quickly and then got into Fargo properly. Tim Canterbury was great, as usual, and it was fun to see Saul Goodman and Wild Bill Hickok in supporting roles.

One complaint about the ending, which I'll hide to be on the safe side:

Martin Freeman's demise, while more spectacular, was no match for William H. Macy frantically trying to escape in his underwear through a motel window in the film.

they think the Walking Dead's audience are fine with seeing zombies uber-gruesomely chow down on someone's innards but assume that if a character seeing same says 'FUCK ME!' in response, they'll be terribly offended.

ROTFLMAO

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The UK Office was just OK, but the finale was pretty good (and easily the best episode)

The US Office season 1 was nothing that great, but then Season 2 was amazing, one of the best seasons of any comedy ever.

During the FIFA World Cup last year, there was an article on Nate Silver's website FiveThirtyEight.com with the title "Lionel Messi Is Impossible". The gist of the article was to show, by examining various statistical data on the player's performances, that his abilities not only exceed those of all other current players, but do so in ways which would at first appear to be mutually contradictory - i.e., that he excels simultaneously in contrasting aspects of the game to a degree which hardly seems possible for a single player.

It's for the same sort of reason that I think The Office (meaning the genuine Merchant / Gervais creation) is one of the all-time high points of television. On one hand, it conveys a sense of reality, in its characterisations, situations and dialogue, which is as naturalistic and convincing as anything I've seen in any fictional TV programme or film, and it has few rivals in this respect. Simultaneously, it manages to orchestrate a seamless stream of comedic beats, regularly building up to gut-wrenchingly funny climaxes; they have all the impact of the best sort of sitcom punchlines, while being conjured up out of exchanges which are thoroughly believable. The naturalistic aspect of the programme has the feel of something that could only be achieved through improvisation and trial-and-error, while the comedic rhythm and structure feels like the result of inspired and impeccable pre-planning. How these two opposing qualities were not only achieved, but brought off to such a degree of excellence and perfection, is something which has bewildered me since I saw the first series thirteen years ago. I've watched it countless times since and have been increasingly in awe of it. So, yeah: The Office is impossible.

(I agree that the last episode is the best.)

I like the US spin-off show (as it's called here, The Office: An American Workplace) well enough - or, at least, the four seasons that I've seen - but it's not even close to being impossible. The characters, the situations and the dialogue are all much more broadly drawn (I assume so, anyway - or is that what it's really like in America?), and much closer in style to a standard sitcom. Not that there's anything wrong with that; it just doesn't have the impeccable confluence of opposing qualities which make The Office such a brilliant masterpiece, nor is it nearly as funny as, say, Curb Your Enthusiasm. I have to say that the "Prison Mike" segment was one of the funniest things I've ever seen, though.

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The best seasons of The Office (US) were 2-4. After the writer's strike it was never the same, though there continued to be many highlights. The show didn't need to go on for 200 episodes though.

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Well, the one good thing about the later seasons is that introduced a lot of new regular characters, and they were all really great characters. In fact the final season is easily the best of the post-strike seasons, the writers who left to run Parks and Rec came back for the final season and it was pretty good. Last episode is great.

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Watched the first 3 episodes of Fargo S2. This season has a different vibe than Fargo S1 but there are many, many delicious moments that masterfully balance between funny and tension, a rare quality. Really, if this is TV then who needs movies?! 

 

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Alex - who almost didn't recognize Kirsten Dunst

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Kirsten Dunst was fantastic in this season.

 

Glad you're liking the new season Alex. It's very keen on setting itself apart from the first season, but still tonally loyal to its roots.

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Jean Smart.

 

I think she dabbled in theatre and did a lot of TV, but I didn't really know about her till now. She was brilliant in Fargo.

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We keep thinking about doing a Hulu free trial too; We might do it when 11.22.63 comes out.  If we like the service, we'll keep paying for it.  That's what happened for us after our free month of Netflix.  Still use it every day!

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Finished Fargo Season 2 and I am left with the exact same feeling that I had after seeing No Country For Old Men. Somehow you expect some kind of showdown, a big climax, a grand finale, ... but it's not coming. Instead, we have people sitting at the table who start talking in a philosophical manner. Hmmm ... It always feels like the whole movie/TV series is suddenly going into a direction that is entirely different from what you were watching. On the one hand, it's good that you don't get what you expect but, on the other, you remain with a feeling of dissatisfaction. 

 

All in all, Fargo 2 had  a lot of strong moments, a few very strong episodes and overall fantastic performances. I actually like Ted 'CSI' Danson (who knew that he had the Fargo element in him?!) but was mostly impressed with Kirsten Dunst and especially with Bokeem Woodbine. The character he played will not easily be forgotten. I have to mention Jesse Plemons. We noticed him as a silent force to reckoned with in Breaking Bad but I think he pulled it off again in Fargo as the everyday guy who gets mixed up in crime because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time and married to the wrong girl.

 

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Bokeem Woodbine as Mike Millegan

 

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That Fargo element.

 

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This season's everyday man sitting next to the wrong girl. Or is it the other way around?

 

 

Alex

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