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The All-New TT: Television Time Mini Reviews

Rascally Badger

El Capitan de la outro espacio
(He/Him)
This was a weekend for finishing TV shows. Squid Game is pretty great. The phenomenon is completely understandable.

Ted Lasso S2 finished up. I wish I still had time to write on my blog, because I feel like I have a lot to say about that show. I think S2 was great. Its storylines didn't necessarily mix together perfectly, but I really think each of its main characters' arcs was well done. (Maybe not Rebecca's; she kind of got lost in the mix).

I also finished Dear White People S4. This show took a lot of swings in its last season, and overall I don't think they worked as well as one would hope. The framing device of setting the main plot as a flashback from years in the future kind of worked. Making it a musical kind of worked. The new kids taking over kind of worked. Ending the show on a protagonist being the good guy with a gun taking down a bad guy with a gun I don't think worked. I don't know, overall it felt like the show really tried to go big in ways that didn't necessarily suit the show; but it still left plenty to think about.
 

YangusKhan

does the Underpants Dance
(He/Him/His)
The latest season of American Horror Story ended this week and it was just incredibly misanthropic all around. It only managed to have fun in the Death Valley section, when it incorporated all kinds of conspiracy theories and famous historical events in America as part of the alien hybrid storyline. Sadly even that alone wasn't really enough to make it that good. The Red Tide section had some incredibly gross politics, and it tried to short cut that by ending it with the Black scientist getting revenge on cops all over the country, but also the rest of the story still happened so that doesn't let them off the hook.
 

ArugulaZ

Fearful asymmetry
I just watched a show on Paramount Plus called Ghosts, and I'm still trying to make sense of the whole experience. So this couple move into an old mansion, only for the wife to take a bump on the noggin and discover that it's chock full of eccentric phantoms. There's a nerdy scout master with an arrow through the neck, a horny yuppie with his pants around his ankles, a Viking (why? How?!), an American revolutionary with the hots for the woman's husband, and so on. The completely ridiculous premise sounds like it was plucked from the 1960s, but no, apparently it was adapted from a recent British series that's still in production.

By all accounts absolutely nothing about this show should work. It's a Britcom retooled for Americans, with a concept so stupid it could have been concocted by Sherwood Schwartz or Sheldon Leonard. Yet here I am, occasionally chuckling at the jokes. This... concerns me slightly.
 

Lakupo

Comes and goes with the wind
(he/him)
Finished the first season of Only Murders in the Building on Hulu recently, which was pretty good. It's a half-hour mystery comedy about three true crime podcast fans who meet and start their own true crime podcast to solve a murder in their fancy NYC building, but there's twists, turns, etc. Sometimes it was a little too cute for its own good, but I think it managed to actually tell its core mystery alongside the character arcs of the main characters well, as by the end we were watching two eps in a row because we kinda wanted to know what happens next (and somehow the entire internet didn't spoil it). It also played with its episodic format in some fun ways --I think it took me half the season to notice a different narrator was framing each episode, but there's an episode or two that makes it very clear . The core dynamic between the trio of Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez also was nice, with Gomez balancing out the characters of the other two. A fine replacement for Chevy Chase!

Still been watching Foundation too, which... is like three different shows in one, and maybe only one of them is actually good. (spoiler: it's the stuff with Lee Pace in it). I think book fans might be tearing out their hair at everything else. I dunno. It's still grand epic sci-fi so I'll waaatch but....
 

John

(he/him)
We finished up American Gods, at least the 3 seasons that were made. I thought each season had enough differences to make it interesting, but I wasn't as down on the second season as much of the Internet seemed to be. Too bad it looks to have been cancelled on a cliffhanger, and doesn't look promising to find a new home, despite what Neil Gaiman has said. Guess I'll just have to read the book!

I thought it was fun to see The House on the Rock in season 2, because we just visited that over the summer. They didn't have to work hard to make the cinematography there look weird, the place was made for that show.
 

zonetrope

(he/him)
I'm really enjoying The Great North. It feels like another flavor of Bob's Burgers, but just different enough, with its own quirks and personality. It definitely finds its voice a lot more quickly than Bob's did. And Alanis Morissette appearing in the Northern Lights as the show's equivalent of Wilson from Home Improvement is genius.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
I'm really enjoying The Great North. It feels like another flavor of Bob's Burgers, but just different enough, with its own quirks and personality. It definitely finds its voice a lot more quickly than Bob's did. And Alanis Morissette appearing in the Northern Lights as the show's equivalent of Wilson from Home Improvement is genius.
I thought this show was really good, I hope it gets a second season.
 

FelixSH

(He/Him)
I'm finally watching the last season of Glee (had stopped last year, in the middle of season 5). The songs haven't been that great (or maybe just not to my taste) since season 3, or something, but there are nice numbers, from time to time. But I do enjoy the rest of the show. It's like, I came for the songs and stayed for the aggressively openness towards queerness in all its shapes or forms. I just watched the gay double wedding, and it just made me really happy, to see something like this on screen. Also, Santana and Brittney are such a sweet couple, it's so nice how they make each other so happy, with no drama at all (or at least, I don't remember any, and I'm talking just relationship drama here).

I mean, it's not just queerness, so many (all?) characters are of a minority, in some kind of way. They have someone like Coach Beaste, who is kind-of my low-key favourite character, I think? Dunno, something about her, being so tough and strong, but also having a woman who is attractive, just not in the standard way, feels so refreshing. But also, showing that, tough as one is, there can be horrible problems with violence. Also also, the stuff in season 6, that I will just not mention, because I don't really know what to spoil and what not, from a show that old.

Dunno, I tend to be a bit blind to the parts of the representation I see, that isn't well done, or even bad, so I might miss stuff here. And I'm not arguing that the show is perfect, it certainly has it's flaws, but it tries so hard. I appreciate that, as hard as it makes certain things to watch (Kurts bullying storyline in S2 is really tough to get through), it at least SHOWS that they exist.

I do understand that Sue is kind of a "have your cake and eat it, too" type of character. She is the villain, and does and say awful things, that are clearly not ok (even if there are lines that she doesn't cross, and it feels nice when she has peoples backs). As a villain, she is allowed to do bad things, but the show very often uses her problematic behaviour for jokes, which makes them feel positive, in some way. Also, sometimes it feels like the show stands behind her awful ideas, which might just be me reading things weirdly.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
My partner and I just finished going through all of What We Do in the Shadows, that was a good time. All the characters are just delightful(ly awful). I did feel like it was getting a bit unnecessarily twisty for the kind of show it is in the last couple episodes, but I guess the writer wanted to shake things up and will trust they have some good ideas in store for season 4... which I guess we have to wait a whole year for now, since it looks like S3 came out just shortly before we caught up to it.
 

ThornGhost

lofi posts to relax/study to
(he/him)
To echo Lakupo above, I also finished and really liked Only Murders in the Building. I really want to call out the set design because someone there loved them some wacky wallpapers and flooring patterns and made the show just delightfully weird looking. Like your spare room in Animal Crossing that you just throw some clashy patterns together in because they're rare.
 

zonetrope

(he/him)
Don't know if anyone here is up on Succession, but last night's episode was both a series peak and reminded me of Psychonauts. It'll make sense when you watch it.
 

Adrenaline

Post Reader
(He/Him)
Yeah, this whole season has been on fire. I know some people think it's slow or whatever but I've been loving it. I didn't think of Psychonauts but you're spot on.
 

zonetrope

(he/him)
The season took a few episodes to really get going, purely for plot reasons, but as a whole I'd say the show is as great as it's ever been.
 

Alixsar

The Shogun of Harlem
(He/him)
Cowboy Bebop: someone somewhere got high and thought what if Julia was Lady MacBeth and then later just regular MacBeth and then she shot Spike, and then they made that show for several million dollars.

It's such...there's so many....there's SO MANY bad ideas, and such HORRID writing that makes the bad ideas even worse...and then there's...it...I can't even think straight cuz I'm laughing so hard.

Fuck it, it doesn't matter. It's dogshit. I give it a "what the fuck? Did Faye honestly just say "I'm not gonna carry that weight", are you for real?" out of 10
 

karzac

(he/him)
Don't know if anyone here is up on Succession, but last night's episode was both a series peak and reminded me of Psychonauts. It'll make sense when you watch it.

Yeah, this season has been great. I enjoyed the first two seasons, but the show hadn't really clicked for me until now. The actors are all at the the top of their game. Give Kieran Culkin six Emmys.

Hadn't thought of the Paychonauts comparison, that's pretty funny.
 

Rascally Badger

El Capitan de la outro espacio
(He/Him)
I've got to be honest: I mostly like Netflix's Cowboy Bebop when it is Spike and Jet and Faye hunting bounties. The further those plots get away from plots from the original, the better they are. I've still got two episodes to go, but overall I'd call it decent to good, even if what the show is doing with Vicious and Julia is not working at all.
 
It's dogshit. I give it a "what the fuck? Did Faye honestly just say "I'm not gonna carry that weight", are you for real?" out of 10
I about puked when that line happened.

I've still got two episodes to go, but overall I'd call it decent to good, even if what the show is doing with Vicious and Julia is not working at all.
LOL then you’re in for a treat. The last two episodes are just nonstop Vicious/Julia nonsense. They’re so bad it might just be worth skipping and pretending it’s only 8 episodes long.
 

Alixsar

The Shogun of Harlem
(He/him)
The show's main problem is that, while they did make major and sweeping changes (which is the right approach! After all, if they did the anime shot-for-shot, why not just watch the anime, right?), they didn't embrace the new identity ENOUGH. It's trying to be a new-but-similar show, but all the old elements they keep feel vestigial and only serve to remind you of what this show isn't. It's tonally the near opposite of the anime; so why keep drawing attention to that? The show gets by solely on the chemistry of the core cast. They weirdly bloat every episode with all The Syndicate™ stuff, but at the same time it feels like it moves too fast? Putting the Speak Like a Child stuff for Faye in the show this early (when a season 2 was already announced) feels completely hollow and meaningless.

The Viscious/Julia stuff is truly awful, and where it ultimately ends up is hilarious. It "makes sense", but it's also like...why did anyone think this was a good idea? Sure it's different, but is it good? I don't think so.

Also there's a ton of really weird one-liners that you know someone thought was cool but it's just like...bruh, really? "Welcome to the ouch"? Someone thought of that and said "yes, that's what Cowboy Bebop is like". It boggles the mind. Oh yeah, and the show looks cheap as FUCK. You can see where the writers were like "uh we can't build another set, so we'll have this scene take place in ___________". One episode has Spike and Faye just stay on the ship the entire episode! Most of the scenes take place in "random shipyard" or "A Street™

The thought I keep coming back to is "It's a copy of a copy of a copy". I don't even like that song, but it feels appropriate. The original show was about how your past doesn't define you your future and present do, you can find a new family if you've lost your old one, moving on past trauma is hard but ultimately better in the long run, etc. etc. The new show's thesis is...uh...it's cool to kill people? Isn't that funny? Also be ruthless and mean and eat balls. I GUESS???? It feels completely soulless; an exercise in being "cool" without having a soul. A copy, of a copy, of a copy.
 
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