What are you watching?

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sciborg2

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« Reply #255 on: January 19, 2020, 02:27:22 am »
Evil - fuck, can't believe I'm still watching this stupid thing ... but it's called Evil, so I guess I am. Pretty much drive by crappy tv, but the bad guy is excellent as I said before. I wasn't going to bother bringing up this show again, but the end of the current episode had me laughing hard and loud - I'm not sure if I'm laughing at it or with it, don't know if it was intentionally supposed to be funny or what. Would like to hear some other's thoughts for anyone else watching. It's possible it's good writing if the dude is hallucinating - I will give the show some props as it kinda leaves the door open just a touch that some of this stuff is true or false, either way. That said, too many episodes were just so badly written - it's like the show is trying to have it both ways, being interestingly mysterious pared with bad stories targeting mass market audiences. Man, this show would've been so much better on cable than prime time - oh, well.

Heh I love this show, minus the Murderous Kid one which just came across as way too forced.

The ridiculousness of it all I think is very deliberate - for example the New Prophet using blowing up a beach ball to better heard the Voice of God, the very generic names for the demons, etc.
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TaoHorror

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« Reply #256 on: January 19, 2020, 03:22:52 am »
Evil - fuck, can't believe I'm still watching this stupid thing ... but it's called Evil, so I guess I am. Pretty much drive by crappy tv, but the bad guy is excellent as I said before. I wasn't going to bother bringing up this show again, but the end of the current episode had me laughing hard and loud - I'm not sure if I'm laughing at it or with it, don't know if it was intentionally supposed to be funny or what. Would like to hear some other's thoughts for anyone else watching. It's possible it's good writing if the dude is hallucinating - I will give the show some props as it kinda leaves the door open just a touch that some of this stuff is true or false, either way. That said, too many episodes were just so badly written - it's like the show is trying to have it both ways, being interestingly mysterious pared with bad stories targeting mass market audiences. Man, this show would've been so much better on cable than prime time - oh, well.

Heh I love this show, minus the Murderous Kid one which just came across as way too forced.

The ridiculousness of it all I think is very deliberate - for example the New Prophet using blowing up a beach ball to better heard the Voice of God, the very generic names for the demons, etc.

Sci, you're watching it too! Cool, I have someone I can talk with about the show. Are you all caught up? I want to discuss the end of the current episode, the ending was a trip  :)

So you're saying the over-the-top stuff is presented intentionally and the story is not a victim of efficiency? Each of these episodes could be a whole season if told properly, or close to it. And each one is a popular equation: heroes encounter the foe, but either don't know it ( a lot of hits to the back of the head looking the wrong way stuff ) or underestimate the situation -> foe almost kills heroes, looks like there's no escape -> heroes win!

I mean, with them getting screwed over so often, you would think they would approach the situations more carefully by now - having each other's backs, processes to confirm safety, checking in. Also, why did they abandoned the good stuff about faith vs atheism? The show just cruises past this stuff - like the psychologist is not "growing" as she witnesses unexplained phenomena, just off to the next episode.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2020, 03:27:01 am by TaoHorror »
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sciborg2

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« Reply #257 on: January 19, 2020, 04:42:37 am »
Evil - fuck, can't believe I'm still watching this stupid thing ... but it's called Evil, so I guess I am. Pretty much drive by crappy tv, but the bad guy is excellent as I said before. I wasn't going to bother bringing up this show again, but the end of the current episode had me laughing hard and loud - I'm not sure if I'm laughing at it or with it, don't know if it was intentionally supposed to be funny or what. Would like to hear some other's thoughts for anyone else watching. It's possible it's good writing if the dude is hallucinating - I will give the show some props as it kinda leaves the door open just a touch that some of this stuff is true or false, either way. That said, too many episodes were just so badly written - it's like the show is trying to have it both ways, being interestingly mysterious pared with bad stories targeting mass market audiences. Man, this show would've been so much better on cable than prime time - oh, well.

Heh I love this show, minus the Murderous Kid one which just came across as way too forced.

The ridiculousness of it all I think is very deliberate - for example the New Prophet using blowing up a beach ball to better heard the Voice of God, the very generic names for the demons, etc.

Sci, you're watching it too! Cool, I have someone I can talk with about the show. Are you all caught up? I want to discuss the end of the current episode, the ending was a trip  :)

So you're saying the over-the-top stuff is presented intentionally and the story is not a victim of efficiency? Each of these episodes could be a whole season if told properly, or close to it. And each one is a popular equation: heroes encounter the foe, but either don't know it ( a lot of hits to the back of the head looking the wrong way stuff ) or underestimate the situation -> foe almost kills heroes, looks like there's no escape -> heroes win!

I mean, with them getting screwed over so often, you would think they would approach the situations more carefully by now - having each other's backs, processes to confirm safety, checking in. Also, why did they abandoned the good stuff about faith vs atheism? The show just cruises past this stuff - like the psychologist is not "growing" as she witnesses unexplained phenomena, just off to the next episode.

Yeah I'm all caught up!

I do think you have a good criticism, I mean why do they rarely seem to reflect on the cases? I mean isn't it all taking a toll on them emotionally?

As to them continually getting blindsided - part of that seem to be David's belief that as "Luke Cage" - a big muscular giant of a man - he can take on most cases by himself. But he is in truth just a random dude that happens to be muscled rather than a genuine warrior and this disconnect seems to make him take on cases alone. OTOH, I think his bizarre life of travel and trials as made him somewhat accepting of potentially being hit by violence.

Admittedly I am trying to remember if the other characters have had to deal with violence to the same extent - I think not, especially since they are skeptic consultants and not "combatants" in the spiritual war David believes himself to be in.

The procedural nature of the show is something I actually like as it keeps things fresh IMO, I think trying to do too many multi-episode stories would also make it harder to toe the line between supernatural and natural without stepping over to one side or the other (which they obviously plan to do at some point...)

I do think think Bouchard is growing, but she is also flawed as much as she is strong - as is David (and arguably Ben). This actually is something I like, as I think even when faced with mundane challenges most people are slow to adapt and stubborn to change their beliefs...but what happens when the challenges ended up threatening the very Ground of your life?
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TaoHorror

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« Reply #258 on: January 19, 2020, 01:14:05 pm »
I like your observations on the characters - maybe I'm dismissing this too quickly as I've soured on the pacing of popular television and too quick on the draw to write it off. And I like the Q discussion with you and H on Manicheanism and Gnositicism vs Evil as perspective. Not really much of a spoiler, but regarding current episode:

(click to show/hide)
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sciborg2

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« Reply #259 on: January 19, 2020, 09:50:02 pm »
I like your observations on the characters - maybe I'm dismissing this too quickly as I've soured on the pacing of popular television and too quick on the draw to write it off. And I like the Q discussion with you and H on Manicheanism and Gnositicism vs Evil as perspective. Not really much of a spoiler, but regarding current episode:

(click to show/hide)

Yeah I liked it as well, I think it speaks to the banality of even supernatural evil. It's a good balance to present Evil as a Platonic force but also show that it comes from insecurity and pettiness as much as righteous anger (the Tutsi stuff in the ep).

Apparently we still don't know what's going on, as the showrunners said you could accept that the demon is just how Leland sees his therapist. In a secular sense it makes the whole thing a kind of pyramid scheme for terrible people.

One comment I liked was the idea that the cases are a feint by the forces of darkness - the crew largely ends up debunking the mundane cases sent against them but at the same time they in turn have had Evil become a greater and greater part of their lives.

Heh, I'm probably over-praising it - I can see its flaws especially in the Evil Brother episode which was just ridiculously bad - but it is probably the only show I got excited about [in the Fall Prime Time Season]. I have CBS Access but stopped caring about FBI, didn't like Discovery...hoping Pickard is good.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2020, 09:52:34 pm by sciborg2 »
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TaoHorror

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« Reply #260 on: January 21, 2020, 07:53:55 pm »
I watch so much fucking television, you'all don't need to watch any of it, just wait for my reviews  ;D

I watched The Irishman. Long movie, but very well done. It was a real treat getting to see Pacino, Dinero and Pesci all on the same screen at once, pretty cool. Pacino and Dinero's parts were not new to them, but still excellent per usual. Pesci stole the show, he really strutted his acting chops in this thing. It's worth the investment, I'll put more on kinda spoilery

(click to show/hide)

I watched The Witcher. I liked it. After a few episodes, it appeared to be just a rehash of the short stories in the first book, which I read and I initially thought that was a mistake as a collection of stories with no epic tale would be boring. But stuck with it and glad I did as as an epic story does emerge. The magic is, well, hmm ... not sure what to make of it, it's very witchy and fairy tale-esc, seems both limited and unlimited and depends on the sorcerer's gifts - I guess we're supposed to learn that on our own, which is good the show doesn't hold your hand on everything - but that said, it's challenging to write overly powerful characters and abilities as you can always think, "why didn't they do that, they did it before ... ". Given the OP nature of the magic, they still did a descent job with it.

Caville did a good Witcher - not too challenging due to the lack of dialogue with the character, just brooding around being a badass, but he did it well. The monsters and lore all fairy tale style, quite a bit of violence, typical fantasy female hotty tropes and nudity ( not tasteful, but also doesn't seem too gratuitous, but that could be me becoming jaded ).

It is very well directed, doesn't hold your hand, we're on our own to piece it all together. There are time jumps with no date/time stamps, but it was fun to keep up and it beautifully weaves together toward the climax. And there are no maps either, so you're having to visualize the continent ( which has no name, it's just The Continent ). This is a strength of the show, it doesn't mire you in a historical introduction and just gets right into it.  I think you cats would dig it, not the greatest thing ever, but it's different enough and good enough to enjoy it.
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sciborg2

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« Reply #261 on: February 02, 2020, 04:25:11 am »
This probably just for Tao, but contains info on the season finale of Evil on CBS:

ARRR THERE BE SPOILERS BELOW MATEY

---

I was looking on Reddit and the reactions were mixed, justifiably so IMO. The one thing that I really liked was the final scene, showing Kristen's corruption, was not what I was anticipating. I was almost convinced that they'd kill one of the daughters. I think this threat dangling over our heads re: the kids is actually done well from the viewer perspective...

OTOH, Kristen seems less concerned about her kids than we the audience. She seems to have no problem continually threatening these people who aren't just assholes & bitches, these people are at the least psychopaths who think they are demonic vessels. OTOH she doesn't live in a gated community or even a nice neighborhood - they live by the tracks in a house that AFAICTell is way too accessible for anyone who comes knocking...so it is no surprise that La Roux the serial killer does come forth.

Kristen's solution is to then no be home because she needs to attend the exorcism...why? She has no cleric/priest class abilities, so to speak, since she doesn't worship a god. That other dude - her old therapist - has the actual medical license...so why does she need to be there when she knows this serial killer is stalking her girls?

Also why is the cop Mira such a bitch? Does she really think this guy who attacked Kristen while in his cell, who seemed to accept his guilt when he was found to have set up his insanity defense via 4chan, is totally innocent? As asked on Reddit, why doesn't Kristen get a restraining order?

Lexis, the girl who was born via Satan's Fertility Clinic...what? And this allows the devil to call her to open the locked door? Also...what? And why did Kristen even have so many kids (two, Lexis & Laura, post miscarriage) when she and her husband clearly aren't that financially stable?

I realize this is a lot of griping, but part of the issue is this idea of the Devil's Plan of slowly corrupting Kristen is actually a good one. It just doesn't fit together that well.
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TaoHorror

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« Reply #262 on: February 02, 2020, 09:33:48 pm »
This is cool, Sci - one of my ( weaknesses? strengths? ) is I form my opinions about stuff before I talk about it with others and I'm disconnected with the tv review world - so I enjoy all of these things that people talk about being so foreign to how I see things, it's a fun mind job on me. Prometheus is case in point, I loved that movie - only to find myself greeted by an online angry mob looking for Ridley Scott's neck for how bad it was.

I was looking on Reddit and the reactions were mixed, justifiably so IMO. The one thing that I really liked was the final scene, showing Kristen's corruption, was not what I was anticipating. I was almost convinced that they'd kill one of the daughters. I think this threat dangling over our heads re: the kids is actually done well from the viewer perspective...
good one. It just doesn't fit together that well.

Agreed - it did do a good job of setting up one of her daughters being killed/kidnapped/mutilated, but flipped the tables on that, so that was good.

Well - you have me re-evaluating my perspective on this whole show as I may have been too harsh because they didn't make the show I wanted ( a serious mystery and exploration of exorcisms with only hints demonic possession could be real ). But it went the way of The X-Files pretty quickly and is one bizarre collection of the absurd+cool+hilarious ( both at and with it ). I think it has it's toe in every genre: comedy, horror, drama, historical, the fantastic ...

OTOH, Kristen seems less concerned about her kids than we the audience. She seems to have no problem continually threatening these people who aren't just assholes & bitches, these people are at the least psychopaths who think they are demonic vessels. OTOH she doesn't live in a gated community or even a nice neighborhood - they live by the tracks in a house that AFAICTell is way too accessible for anyone who comes knocking...so it is no surprise that La Roux the serial killer does come forth.

I actually wasn't put off by this as much - part of her carelessness is her insistence that this stuff isn't real has compromised her danger-sense and even if it wasn't real, these crazies can still hurt ya. She's witnessing and experiencing phenomena that is not easily explained away with science and she's resisting "the truth" and part of her strengthening the frame of that resistance is to casually dismiss the dangers - a mistake ( for her ), but I feel I'm getting what the writers are trying to do here. Also, if I'm right about my assertion this show is an amalgam of styles, underestimating one's threats is a pop horror element.

Kristen's solution is to then no be home because she needs to attend the exorcism...why? She has no cleric/priest class abilities, so to speak, since she doesn't worship a god. That other dude - her old therapist - has the actual medical license...so why does she need to be there when she knows this serial killer is stalking her girls?

True - here is where you're rushed observation comes in, the locks is pat solution and I strike this up to them needing to move the story along. It could've been more drawn out and complex, but they wanted us to get to the daughter was secretly devil incubated part. She goes because she's into it - she's all in and doesn't want to miss any of it. She was asked to join the team by the Priest to provide her scientific ( in her case, psychologist ) perspective as the Priest/church struggles to tell the difference between actual demonic possession, mental illness and fakes. I also think the Priest questions his beliefs in some respects, so if he can convert a true skeptic, it confirms his beliefs.

Also why is the cop Mira such a bitch? Does she really think this guy who attacked Kristen while in his cell, who seemed to accept his guilt when he was found to have set up his insanity defense via 4chan, is totally innocent? As asked on Reddit, why doesn't Kristen get a restraining order?

Could just be bad writing, but it's part of the overall narrative that she's being attacked directly by demonic forces and those forces hold sway over many ( it appears ), so I took the cop being a cog in the devil machinery. I'm hoping the show doesn't cheat us out of this and comes up with a good way to explain how they can move so many, but not her - what makes her different. The priests I can understand being protected.

Lexis, the girl who was born via Satan's Fertility Clinic...what? And this allows the devil to call her to open the locked door? Also...what? And why did Kristen even have so many kids (two, Lexis & Laura, post miscarriage) when she and her husband clearly aren't that financially stable?

Well, not sure where you hail from, but here in the USA having more kids than you can afford is the rule, not the exception. And it could be financially they were in better off in the past, some could've been unplanned, etc.

I realize this is a lot of griping, but part of the issue is this idea of the Devil's Plan of slowly corrupting Kristen is actually a good one. It just doesn't fit together that well.

There's a lot to gripe about this show, so don't beat yourself up  ;)

I'm trying to give it it's due - honestly, I fell backwards when we get to see the head demon/devil, whatever that thing is in that hilarious 50's costume conception of what the devil looks like. I honestly don't know what that angle is - are we supposed to think it's funny? Is it a projection and not real? Is it trying to be scary? Something's amiss with this show, just can't tell if it's intentional or not.
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sciborg2

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« Reply #263 on: February 03, 2020, 08:10:07 am »
Tao:

Quote
Well - you have me re-evaluating my perspective on this whole show as I may have been too harsh because they didn't make the show I wanted ( a serious mystery and exploration of exorcisms with only hints demonic possession could be real ). But it went the way of The X-Files pretty quickly and is one bizarre collection of the absurd+cool+hilarious ( both at and with it ). I think it has it's toe in every genre: comedy, horror, drama, historical, the fantastic ...

Yeah if I had to give it a genre it would be a mix between urban fantasy and horror. I think they could have gone with a more skeptical-leaning show but that would probably be boring pretty quickly. If you are going to bring in demons you almost have to have them be real. The exception would be something like Sherlock with the Hound of Bakersville but even there you were dealing with only a limited season.

The only way I could see a skeptical leaning show work is if it is heavy in the comedy arena - like an adult's version of Scooby Doo. Though Millennium, for a good bit of the first season did really leave you questioning whether there was gonna be anything supernatural until they went all in. So maybe it could work if done right? I just know I'd get bored if every case was sort-of maybe the Devil, unless they did what Millennium early Season 1 did and focus more on the serial-killer aspect than the possession aspect.

Quote
I actually wasn't put off by this as much - part of her carelessness is her insistence that this stuff isn't real has compromised her danger-sense and even if it wasn't real, these crazies can still hurt ya. She's witnessing and experiencing phenomena that is not easily explained away with science and she's resisting "the truth" and part of her strengthening the frame of that resistance is to casually dismiss the dangers - a mistake ( for her ), but I feel I'm getting what the writers are trying to do here. Also, if I'm right about my assertion this show is an amalgam of styles, underestimating one's threats is a pop horror element.

Interesting take - I can see her arrogance (all the main characters have that fatal flaw) making her rational away the danger she is putting her family in. But I still think she could easily dismiss the supernatural danger while still acknowledging the mundane fact that these people are happy to engage in rape/murder and her daughters are easily vulnerable.

This is where I think they could have put more effort, like maybe her mom has inherited money or whatever and so they can live in a more secure location.

Quote
True - here is where you're rushed observation comes in, the locks is pat solution and I strike this up to them needing to move the story along. It could've been more drawn out and complex, but they wanted us to get to the daughter was secretly devil incubated part. She goes because she's into it - she's all in and doesn't want to miss any of it.

I like your "all-in" observation. She wants the rush, and even all this danger is an addiction of sorts. There's a part of her that cannot help but treat all this like a video game. For her the climbing was a thrill because she was in danger, and she doesn't realize - or doesn't want to realize - that her thrill-seeking behavior is making her come up with half-ass solutions.

Quote
Could just be bad writing, but it's part of the overall narrative that she's being attacked directly by demonic forces and those forces hold sway over many ( it appears ), so I took the cop being a cog in the devil machinery.

But Mira (played by Kristen Connolly) is her friend...If Evil can just enchant people - even temporarily - I think Good should throw in the towel. I think this was just sloppy writing sadly. I mean can I sort of see why a restraining order won't help in the immediate and we can rationalize it but the show could've given us something here.

Quote
Well, not sure where you hail from, but here in the USA having more kids than you can afford is the rule, not the exception.

This explains American politics  ;)

Quote
I honestly don't know what that angle is - are we supposed to think it's funny? Is it a projection and not real? Is it trying to be scary? Something's amiss with this show, just can't tell if it's intentional or not.

I think it's supposed to be a bit of a joke, yet at the same time hitting the uncanny valley. I actually really like the way devils and demons are portrayed on the show. I think trying too hard to make a scary demon would fall flat, this weirdness in the way they look works better.


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« Reply #264 on: February 07, 2020, 03:01:14 am »
Dublin Murders

Excellent! Don't get the 7.1 IMDB rating, guess I'm watching a different show. The dialogue is worth the watch alone. Gets an A+ from me.
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« Reply #265 on: February 23, 2020, 08:10:41 pm »
I've watched both seasons of Manhunt. The first season was on Discovery channel, wasn't renewed and then Spectrum had a second season done.

Both were very good. The first/Manhunt was a bit better then the second/Deadly Games, but still very good. The first was on Ted Kaczynski and depending on how accurate, was a mad hunt for the dude and they almost missed him. The second was on Richard Jewel who was falsely implicated by the FBI and the Media. The real killer was Eric Rudolph. It was painful watching how irresponsible ( criminal? ) the media was in destroying Jewel's life, an innocent man. Interestingly, appears both Ted and Eric are in cells near each other in same super max prison in Colorado. Anyways, if you dig true crime stuff, these dramatizations are pretty good. The rendition of the FBI in both aren't flattering and if they're accurate, time to fix that shit, embarrassing.
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« Reply #266 on: February 24, 2020, 03:21:34 pm »

Quote
Well, not sure where you hail from, but here in the USA having more kids than you can afford is the rule, not the exception.

This explains American politics  ;)

Off topic, but I wonder what this explains specifically (or generally)?
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« Reply #267 on: March 02, 2020, 07:21:30 pm »
Apologies for being unkind, but His Dark Materials is a weird fucking show.

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« Reply #268 on: March 02, 2020, 08:19:17 pm »
If you've got time, HDM is probably a quick read, though it does have plenty  of pages. I'm not saying you'll enjoy it, but I think it might go a great way in explaining why they are doing what they are doing in the show. Its introduced gradually throughout the story, couched in a Coming of Age tropes as the MCs discover the great world, and the evils within it, s they travel farther and farther from home.
The darkness is actually pretty easy to miss. Well, until the end of the first book at least. IT resets itself several times though so the world doesn't feel dark through the child's eyes - even though as an adult it most certainly is.

Unrelated, Netflix's Ragnarok. Its in Norwegian, dubbed english. Watched 2 episodes, seems worth the watch. Norse mythology obviously, played out in modern days in a beautiful small town somewhere in Norway (I presume). The acting is good, the setup is suitably interesting, and the production value is high. So far everything seems to work well.
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« Reply #269 on: March 09, 2020, 12:27:15 pm »
So, HBO's The Outsider just wrapped up.  Show was entertaining for the most part, but kind of ended with a bit of a whimper, to me.  Worth watching, but not "must see" to me.  The show never managed to "reproduce" how good the first few episodes were.

We started watching a new show called Devs, which is on Hulu.  Vaguely "sci-fi" but seems like mostly just a sort of drama.  First episode was entertaining and interesting, vague in places, of course, to draw one in.  We did enjoy Ex Machina, and this has the same director/writer, Alex Garland.  I think it is provisionally worth checking out.
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