Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Fri Dec 17, 2010 9:52 am

I've got my hands on the first series of The Wire today so I'll be giving it a watch over the holidays.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:08 am

Oh, you're in for a treat.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:16 am

Oh bloody hell - I wish I could wipe my memory and watch The Wire again. What a treat!
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:33 am

Agreed. Same with Rome and Deadwood. But especially Rome. Rediscovering just how uber hard Pullo actually is!
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Sat Dec 18, 2010 12:39 am

I watched the first episode of The Wire last night. Here's what I blogged about it...

People have been on at me for quite a while about The Wire. While I never gave it a look when it was on between 2002 and 2008 it's started to seem more and more tempting ever since. Even Charlie Brooker said good things about it.

So I finally gave the first episode a chance and I'm glad that I did. It's fairly uninviting, you watch it because you want to watch it. You're thrown straight into the story, no messing about. While this is good it means that it takes a while to get to grips with the characters, something that's not made easier by the fact that there's a hell of a lot of them.

However the story is very engaging. From the off you're interested in what's going on and why. The fact that the series focuses on both the Cops and the Crims makes it even more interesting.

I'm still not convinced that this series is for me. I can see that it deserves the reputation that it has and it is a brilliantly written piece of TV, the lack of connection with any characters can alienate the viewer. There was the odd character or two moment but it seemed that they were forcefully tacked on to the end of the episode. I will however watch the rest of this series if nothing else as the story was intriguing and entertaining. Not to mention well written.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Sat Dec 18, 2010 1:23 am

Nice job, Youngster. It will be interesting to see whether the show causes you to actually reassess if its for you or not. If it doesn't - no harm done. You've already recognised its quality and that there's much you can gleam from it from a technical standpoint.

Also, remember to keep in mind that very often first episodes of series aren't always fully representative of what's to come. By necessity they are primarily designed as an introduction/set-up for what's to come.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Sat Dec 18, 2010 1:32 am

I am really looking forward to the second episode and I hope that I can get into it as it's clearly very very good.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Sat Dec 18, 2010 1:33 am

Well, as I said - even if you don't there's much of value you can take from it. Smile
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Sat Dec 18, 2010 4:41 am

I'd recommend watching it with subtitles. And don't worry about not engaging with the characters - once you work out who is who (which does take a while) you will love them.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Nick Barlow on Mon Dec 20, 2010 2:36 pm

I have a couple more suggestions:

The first two seasons of Shameless (basically, up until James McAvoy and Anne-Marie Duff leave)
The BBC's 90s adaptation of The Crow Road - and you should, of course, read the book by now as you're about the right age to get it...

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Tue Dec 21, 2010 12:16 am

Cheers Nick, will take a look.

I've seen bits of earlier Shameless stuff, I didn't really get into it until quite a bit later though.

Meanwhile the blog has this to say for itself:

I've finished the 6-part arc with DS9. A few nice little bits in there. We finally learn a bit more about the Vorta, Odo's story develops a tiny bit (considering it's been somewhat static since the start of series 3 bar the short-lived not-a-changeling-anymore storyline, this can only be a good thing) and I actually started to disagree with Kira as she fought the Cardassians, she could probably have got more out of earning their trust than openly defying them. All in all it was good, but it just seemed massively confused. Perhaps 6 episodes was too long but then again, anything less would have been unconvincing as a good takeover.

It's a shame how almost 2 series worth of development with Garak and Ziyal was ended with one simple line after her death (which, incidentally I saw coming as soon as she was brought into this story in the way that she was).

I'm not disappointed by the six-parter, it was brilliant. But I think there was just so much to handle and it wasn't handled in the best way possible. The episode with Worf's son could have fitted in anywhere and we could have had some real development instead.

Apart from Worf's bit though, the whole thing was brilliant. Worf's shoehorning into the series in general isn't that fantastic. He was bland in the other series, this one does a bit for his character (DS9's superiority over all other Trek is contagious)but it's still dull and stinks of the pretentiousness that TNG bathed itself in every week.Why anyone gives a toss about Klingons arguing and fighting for 50 minutes in the middle of an exciting arc I shall never know. They have a different culture to us, WE GET IT!

Bar that though, it was a gripping 6 parter, more like 5 linking stories than one long one but it certainly did the job well. All the time I am asking myself 'is this really Star Trek?' It's far too good and I'm enjoying every bit of it.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Tue Dec 21, 2010 12:41 am

I don't get what you mean when you keep mentioning pretentiousness, but enjoy Worf's wedding!
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Tue Dec 21, 2010 12:48 am

Rich Flair wrote:I don't get what you mean when you keep mentioning pretentiousness, but enjoy Worf's wedding!

I find Trek to be very self-important at times. For example, throwing in the Klingon episode mid-arc seems like they did it to say "Look at us, our Aliens have issues too." That and things like all of the references to how Kirk was a legend and Klingon Opera. Then there's the title sequence, a load of close-ups of DS9 with some overly-epic music, "Look how good our effects work and out music guy is!" Perhaps pretentious us the wrong word, but it does bug me.

Despite what I just said about Worf however, I am enjoying the relationship with Dax and can't wait for the wedding Very Happy
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Patrick on Tue Dec 21, 2010 12:17 pm

Johnstone McGuckian wrote:...and I actually started to disagree with Kira as she fought the Cardassians, she could probably have got more out of earning their trust than openly defying them.

Kira was never going to cooperate on any level with the Cardassians. Remember, she spent decades of her life living under the Cardassian occupation, and witnessing first hand their brutality, before joining the resistance. Having the Cardassians back on Terak Nor (the name of DS9 during the occupation) again simply brought memories of the occupation back to her.

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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Tue Dec 21, 2010 1:26 pm

I cannot now, and could not at the time, stand the entire long-winded importance and po-faced over reverence afforded by both the show and fans towards the bloody Klingons.

Especially Worf
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Tue Dec 21, 2010 3:13 pm

That's exactly the problem that I have. It would be like referencing the Daleks in every episode, which would just be silly.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Tue Dec 21, 2010 3:16 pm

Patrick wrote:
Johnstone McGuckian wrote:...and I actually started to disagree with Kira as she fought the Cardassians, she could probably have got more out of earning their trust than openly defying them.

Kira was never going to cooperate on any level with the Cardassians. Remember, she spent decades of her life living under the Cardassian occupation, and witnessing first hand their brutality, before joining the resistance. Having the Cardassians back on Terak Nor (the name of DS9 during the occupation) again simply brought memories of the occupation back to her.
I didn't mean actually cooperating, but just making an attempt to not be put in a holding cell where she'd be totally useless.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Tue Dec 21, 2010 3:19 pm

Exactly. Especially since the much vaunted Klingon culture was it was really just as mishmash of Russian, Japanese and any other number of feudal societies.

Nothing special at all.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Wed Dec 22, 2010 2:03 am

You miserable buggers - there's nothing they did better than the whole Klingon thing, and it provided laughs a plenty that was sorely missing come Voyager. The distinct change of quality for the better between series 3 of DS9 and series 4 was because they brought Worf in, and it was much needed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nNTVzwjEyb4&feature=related
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Wed Dec 22, 2010 2:22 am

When it comes to to the subject of Klingons and in particular Worf, I'm more than happy top be branded a miserable bugger, mate.

Actually, I will grant that Worf's arrival did have a small positive effect on the shows quality. But it certainly wasn't the sole or even main reason for the upswing as far as I'm concerned. That was already on the cards. (And in certain ways much of it was engendered as a direct reaction to Babylon 5's use of arc story telling).
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Wed Dec 22, 2010 2:36 am

I don't mind the Klingons presence, it's just that whole episodes are given to them every time we have a Worf-centric episode. It'd be like setting every single Dax-centric episode on Trill or heading back to the Founders home world for Odo.

It just seems that there's far less diversity in the storytelling when Worf takes center stage. And once you've seen one episode set on a Klingon ship, you've seen them all.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Rich Flair on Wed Dec 22, 2010 2:42 am

They should have done a spin-off starring the greatest DS9 character - old one eye, General Martok.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Wed Dec 22, 2010 2:48 am

Now there was a character who was far more interesting than Worf. I agree, he was one of DS9's more interesting Klingons.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:03 am

Martok was more interesting. Probably because he didn't have 7 years of TNG back story revealed already. From what I can gather, many of Worf's episodes are just retreads of things that happened in TNG. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong because I really haven't seen that much TNG at all. I've probably seem more Voyager to be honest. Actually, the most that I've seen of the two series are the episodes that are on the Cybermen Borg box set.
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Re: Johnstone's Epic Quest to Watch Stuff That was on the Telly Box A Long Time Ago!

Post by Sid Seadevil on Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:08 am

Basically you're right, Youngster. Added to which those 7 years of already existing backstory weren't particularly interesting in the first place. In many ways I feel sorry for Michael Dorn. He played a character who talked a good fight - but was very rarely allowed to actually back that up in actual action.
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