Tag Archives: Claire Danes

TV Season Half Way Thru – Let’s Discuss

12 Dec

We are halfway thru the 2011-2012 TV season, so I thought now would be a good time to share our thoughts on where we are so far.  Did the shows you were psyched for let you down? What shows looked like they were going to fail but totally surprised you? 

Shows that lived up to my expectations

2 Broke Girls – I had high hopes for this show,a sassy chick comedy. It took a few episodes but I am sold. The jokes are pretty raunchy, and the premise is pretty thin, but Kat Dennings and Beth Behers make it work.  What still isn’t working for me is Oleg, the cook. I wish he was a little more Mel from Alice and a lot less pervy.

American Horror Story – A big fan of Ryan Murphy‘s Nip/Tuck days (until the Carver), I had high hope for this show, not to mention the strength of a cast including Connie Britton and Jessica Lange and Mr. Murphy delivered. This is by far the most creative and daring show on basic cable. 

Once Upon A Time – I don’t know why, I mean it is a pretty silly sounding premise, but I knew this would be good. From the writing, to the acting to the outstanding production values this show has delivered as expected.  Robert Carlyle and Lana Parilla would be nominated for Emmy’s if it wasn’t such a political mess.

Ringer – I expected a good noir thriller, with many twists and turns and that is what I got. What makes Ringer more successful in my eyes is, it doesn’t take itself too seriously and they move the plot along at a quick clip.

Shows that surprised me

A Gifted Man – I have to admit the premise sounded pretty cheesy. Egotistical doctor gets schooled by the ghost of his saintly x-wife, but Patrick Wilson makes it work and the show is watchable. I hope it gets a second season there is a lot of potential, and a lot of room to grow these characters and the storylines.

Hart of Dixie – I was on board from the beginning, but I am genuinely surprised at how much I am loving this show.  The writers have come a long way since the pilot, and are giving as much time and attention to fleshing out the supporting characters and relationships as their leads.  More George and Wade, more Lavon and Zoe friendship, and for the love of god give Lemon a few more layers. Shrill,, shriller, shrillest is not depth.

Homeland – Actually I would say this show completely blew me away. (No Pun intended).  Claire Danes is flat-out amazing, I hope she is recognized later this week at the SAG Award nominations and next fall at the Emmy’s.  Since this comes from the creators of 24, I would not put it past them to blow up Sgt. Brody in the finale.  Just like Jack Bauer Carrie can have a new foe every season.

Revenge – I thought this would be fun, a return to the days of Dallas and Dynasty. But this is far more advanced, and polished.  Thank you for the best guilty pleasure since, birthday cake and ice cream.

Suburgatory – The premise, a basic fish out of water story. What makes this one different, the cast, Jeremy Sisto and Jane Levy are great as our fish. But Cheryl Hines and Carly Chaikin as mother and daughter Dallas and Dalia steal the show.

Shows that disappointed, and I wouldn’t miss if the got cancelled

Grimm – Sorry, it isn’t settling, the characters, the stories, it just doesn’t work.

Secret Circle – nothing to say, please go away now.

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Homeland on Showtime

30 Oct

Homeland on Showtime, is based on an Israeli series called Hatufim (Prisoners of War). The show stars Claire Danes as CIA officer Carrie Mathison, who is convinced a recently returned Iraq POW Nicholas Brody, played by Damian Lewis was turned, and is a threat to national security.

Homeland’s creators and executive producers Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa, who brought us “24”, have gone in completely different direction with the tone of this show. Homeland delivers its protect national security message more quietly then “24”.  Homeland reflects the growth of the country and how we manage our fear and anxiety about terrorism.  Where “24”, was all hysteria the threat is everywhere, Homeland is a character study on the effects of that hysteria.

Both Carrie and Brody are dealing with their psychological demons brought on by their experiences in Iraq, as the viewer we get to see the parallel that is drawn between the 2, it is a nice piece of story telling.

The main action of the show surrounds the, “is he or isn’t he” question, so far the show has done an excellent job of keeping this unanswered. There are moments when you think you have a scene that shows he is turned, but then is zigs instead of zags.  For example, he is shown praying as a muslim, carpet and all, you could argue he is definitely turned, he has been brain washed or he assimilated to survive and hasn’t let go of that assimilation.

Rounding out the cast; the always superb Mandy Patinkin, who plays Carrie’s mentor Saul, and Morena Baccarin who plays Brody’s wife Jessica.

Bottom line, the show is worth checking out, the performances by Lewis and Danes are strong, and the story is compelling. 

Check it out and let me know what you think.

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