I’ve been watching Salvation on UK Netflix and it’s just making me miss HACF.
Why is mainstream US telly so emotionally vapid, so silly and plastic?
In one scene, a character is literally waterbaorded. Half an hour later, he’s totally fine and making jokes about it. You know, like any of us would be after being tortured.
The world is literally ending in Salvation and all that the characters care about is who’s fucking who. Really, if I knew I only had a few weeks to live, I’d have other priorities.
Silly, silly, silly.
I’m now waiting for another TV drama written for adults. Please tell me if you find one.
I’ve wasted my life watching this shitty series and I can’t believe the big boohoo at the end is that the central female character can’t decide between the two really handsome blokes with great arms. Thus is all of humanity reduced to pubescent mewling.
AND NOW THEY’RE FUCKING DANCING. BECAUSE THAT WOULD HAPPEN.
I’m in fucking pieces. Just when everything was perfect for Gordon… I can’t believe it. It’s so horrible and random and unfair.
Which I guess is why HACF is the most lifelike show on telly.
Seeing his girls and Donna weeping on the sofa…. that just fucked me up. The shot where his daughters reach for each others’ hands was killer. And then, the actual sequence representing his stroke was fantastic: spooky and romantic and sad and ‘Well, this was your life.’
I can’t believe how ignored this show is when it delivers incomparable drama like tonight’s ep. HACF has made all the characters all too real, I don’t know if I’ll ever really believe they’re not alive, somewhere. That’s its genius.
Is it then hypocritical of me to ask for happy endings for everyone? I *know* life isn’t like that, I know shit like this happens every day but it’s GORDON, for fuck’s sake. He’s so awkward and geeky and lovable and tries so goddamn hard for every person in his life. He’s pretty much my ideal of what a best mate would be like. Why have this happen to Gordon? He’s like a fucking puppy, no harm should ever come to him.
I’ve got to stop writing this now. Been crying solidly for twenty minutes.
I feel soo sad now that I’ll never experience new eps of this universe again, the same as I feel about Falling Skies, Continuum, Warehouse 13, Eureka, Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles, Dollhouse and sooo many more.
On the one hand, I’m glad we got more than Firefly or Caprica. On the other, I still think there are great stories to be told in the Grimmverse. It was such a cleverly written and plotted series and the ensemble of actors rolled with it, made it all seem real.
Grimm was always tight and snappy, never bloated and labouring, a rare joy in these days of rampant Netflixitis. We had arcs in seasons, across seasons, characters going from bad to good, good to bad; I loved all that unpredictability.
Above all, Grimm had this finely-honed humour that even when the darkest shit would be going on, someone would pop up (maybe Wu, maybe Hank, often Monroe, bless him) and say something to give it a twist. Which made it all more believable! Life isn’t un-relenting horror, even in the most horrible moments, incongrous, ridiculous things leap out and slap you in the face. The Absurd is a good friend of Death.
Thank you to all the actors of Grimm for giving me a whole set of people to love and hate and cheer and chide. Thank you to the writers for making up sooo many awesome Monster Of The Week stories *and* extending the universe with the myth of the Grimms, Wesen et al. Thank you to all the crew and tech peeps and animators and sound fx and grips and whoever else made it all happen.
Give yourself a pat on the back when you look at what you made. You made something special that entertained and connected with millions of viewers.
The quiet genius of Peter Kay reaches perhaps its purest expression in Car Share.
Nothing happens. It’s just two coworkers sharing a car to work. And back. That’s it. Nothing bloody happens.
And that nothing is everything.
Kay is better than Beckett, better than Bennett, better than Camus. There is not a wasted word, every interaction is absolutely essential and completely fucking pointless. Morrissey is a mere cack-handed amateur compared to the gentle precision of Kay’s exposition on this corner of British culture.
These tiny exchanges are so silly, they are eerily perfect:
“I can’t wait to hit the free bar!”
“What you on about? There’s no free bar!”
“There was a free bar last year!”
“NO THERE WASN’T!”
“Well… no-one stopped me… “
The other beautiful thing about Car Share is its pure adoration of pop music. Car Share understands the beauty in the ephemerality of pop music. At the minute, I’m watching a whole conversation about Crazy Frog’s weird little penis. It is brilliant. They also stage musical numbers so this is as much musical TV as Glee was but that’s the only thing the shows have in common; Kay is a total auteur and the comedy in Car Share is both way sharper and more real than the committee-written jokes of Gles.
If you’ve never seen Car Share, check it out. It’s fucking mint.
SO, I’m bingeing Veronica Mars and I’m too entertained. Like, I expected it to be good but not *this* good. The writing is snappy, the dialogue entertaining, the plots all sewn up with each ep…
If this was a Netflix series, I feel like forty minutes of each ep would be her just staring in the mirror intercut with flashbacks, flash forwards, zooming pics of the Horsehead Nebula and insects fucking each other.
I’d forgotten telly could be concise and REFRESHING. Not a fucking slog through hours of self-indulgent pseudery, just WAITING FOR SOMETHING TO BLOODY HAPPEN.
Fucking hell…. just tried to watch the first ep of this and, apparently, casual racism is the NEW EDGY on Netflix.
“BUT HE’S OBNOXIOUS, YOU DON’T GET IT!!!”
Oh, but I do. It’s yet another excuse for punch down humour. Why couldn’t he have been an obnoxious black cop making fun of crackers? Why couldn’t he have been an obnoxious female cop with a Male Tears mug?
Because that transposition might actually be challenging.
Instead we get Yet Another White Male braying his “OOH, LOOK AT ME, I’M POLITICALLY INCORRECT” bollocks everywhere.
This is so fucking cliched, it’s only made worse by the irritating score boom-tishing Backstrom’s racist quips like a tiny Richard Hammond sucking off Jeremy Clarkson.
Fuck this show, fuck everyone in it and fuck all the writers.
Contrary to what you might have heard, my friend, you are not safe. Safety is a story, it’s something we teach our kids so they can sleep at night, but we know it’s not real.
Beware baffled humans, beware false prophets who will sell you a fake future of bad teachers, corrupt leaders and dirty corporations.
Beware of cops and robbers, the kinds that rob your dreams. But most of all, beware of each other.
The world is going to crack wide open. There is something on the horizon. A massive connectivity. The barriers between us will disappear, and we’re not ready.
We’ll hurt each other in new ways, we’ll sell and be sold, we’ll share our most tender selves only to be mocked and destroyed. We’ll be so vulnerable, and we’ll pay the price.
We won’t be able to pretend that we can protect ourselves anymore. It’s a huge danger, a gigantic risk, but it’s worth it, if only we can learn to take care of each other, then this awesome new connection won’t isolate us.
After the original series was cancelled, there was no Star Trek on television until the animated series in 1973. When the producers were casting the cartoon, they initially decided not to use George Takei and Nichelle Nichols. It would save money to get their roles played by other actors.
But Leonard Nimoy refused to work on the series unless the entire original cast was brought back. He believed that the message of Trek was one of diversity and no two actors better represented that ideal than Takei and Nichols. He stood up for his fellow actors in a way that is very rare in TV and film.
This is what Star Trek is all about. This is what Star Trek means to me.
My feet hurt. I have Euclideanly flat feet so walking any distance is always a painful chore. My feet are red and will take a couple of days to recover from the weekend. They’re in that state because I spent the last three days walking round the NEC, the venue for Destination Star Trek 50. (The 50 stands for the fifty years since the original series’ first episode was first broadcast, way back in 1966.) My Trek buddy Nat and I joined thousands of others who all flocked to Hall 4 to see our idols in person and perhaps get their autograph or even a photo with them.
The event was chocker with Trek actors; Marina Sirtis, Alice Krige, Garrett Wang, Armin Shimmerman, WILLIAM FUCKING SHATNER…. Well, you get the idea. It was wall-to-wall famous faces. I heard Marina, Alice and Christoper Lloyd take part in a great talk about the differences between TV and cinema (well, it was meant to be, it covered a much wilder gamut, thanks to the always fabulous Ms. Sirtis).
I also heard Adam Nimoy talk about his beautiful documentary, For The Love Of Spock and I have to confess that I was crying through a lot of that event. For me, Trek and Spock and my Dad are all interconnected. I miss my Dad so much and he loved Spock / Nimoy as much as I did. It was my Dad who introduced me to SF and Star Trek, we used to love watching it together, right up to the reboot films. When Nimoy died, my Dad was truly saddened by his passing. He would have loved Adam’s documentary had he lived long enough to see it.
Nat and I dropped in on other talks and competitions too. But we both agreed that the best part of the whole event was, as Adam Nimoy and Marina Sirtis both stated separately, the fans.
If you want a feeling of inclusion, if you want a feeling of being an un-judged member of a family, go to a Star Trek con. I talked here about the utopian and profoundly progressive DNA of Trek and the proof of that is in the fandom. In no other place will you find such open minds and open hearts. We don’t care about race or gender or sexuality or religion or physical shape. Hell, we don’t even care if you only know one show or only like one character. The MRA-fuelled bile of the gaming scene, the gatekeeping, bullying and sexist vitriol has no place in Trek fandom. Any Trek convention you go to will be the anti-matter version of a Trump rally. Take all that right-wing paranoia and hatred and fear and pessimism about the future and replace it with throngs of people who accept the beauty of infinite diversity in infinite combination.
I wandered about all weekend, getting pics of fellow Trekkies and you can see for yourself the diversity of our cadre. Some of us are blind, some of us can see, some of us are bipedal, some of us are tripedal or roll on four wheels. Some of us are old and wrinkly, some are tiny, enthusiastic children, leaping about with glee. Me, I’m hugely fat and look uncannily like a perplexed walrus. None of that matters because we are the best people.
Why? Because we dream of a future that is the opposite of Theresa May’s desperate Norsefire manifesto. We dream of a future where Earth is at peace and education, healthcare and food is universally available and accessible. The people I met at DST50 are the best people. Overwhelmingly friendly, charming and geekily garrulous, I had a fucking blast this weekend.
If you get the chance to go to a Trek con, pick out a costume (or don’t, if you’re shy, doesn’t matter!) and then GO. You won’t regret it. Promise.
Bosworth: “Looks like you’re in a performance of your own, hah? More of a one man show kind of a thing?”
Joe: “Yeah, I’m a regular Spalding Gray…”
THIS is why HACF rules.
THIS is why it actually IS the ‘80s and doesn’t merely present a copy of a copy of a parody of a copy as most ‘80s period pieces do.
If you were there, as I was, this line fucking hit home like a punch to the plexus.
THANK YOU, WRITERS OF HACF FOR NOT BEING SHIT.
THANK YOU FOR BEING REAL.
It’s tiny details like this that all add up to make a TV show what it is. Cast badly, throw in tired cliches and you end up with HEY IT’S THE ‘80s and every motherfucker looking like Flock of Seagulls.
Have brilliant actors, wonderful costume and inspired set dressing coupled with writers who are obviously RAZOR FUCKING SHARP and you have Halt And Catch Fire. When Pace and Huss have the exchange above, in front of a ridiculous yuppie fishtank, it’s two fantastic actors just revelling in fucking with each other. It’s beautiful to behold. Most cinema doesn’t compare, let alone telly.
Thank you for re-affirming my faith, yet again, in TV as an art form and not visual wallpaper.