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The All-New TT: Television Time Mini Reviews

YangusKhan

does the Underpants Dance
(He/Him/His)
What was this? I must've missed it.
It's when the bard was trying to distract the dock worker guy to get people on the ship.

He was giving "criticism" of Jaskier's song, which is supposed to be an in-universe retelling of his adventures with Geralt from season 1. The guy says something like "it took until the 4th verse for me to pick up on the different timelines."
 

ozacrot

Jogurt Joestar
(he/him)
We have binged the entire first season of Yellowjackets and I loved it. The premise is that it follows a HS girl's soccer team through a tragic plane crash and 19 months in the wilderness, while checking in with the survivors 25 years later. The show does a great job at incorporating occult/magical realism elements while still feeling tense and gritty - maybe a bit like True Detective S1 or certain A24 horror films. Fantastic casting, as well, and against all odds, it's yet another show with a 90s setting that found period-appropriate needle drops without relying on the ones you've heard elsewhere.
 

jpfriction

A most radical pontiff
(He, Him)
I can tell that The Afterparty is going to be pretty hit or miss based off the first three episodes. It’s a new Lord and Miller joint that involves a bunch of people recalling the events of a party where someone is killed, the gimmick being that each person’s story is a different genre of show. First one rom com, second one action movie, etc. Third one worked best so far, Ben Schwartz starring in a musical.

Going to stick with it, lots of promise here.
 

YangusKhan

does the Underpants Dance
(He/Him/His)
Tonight's episode of Euphoria was incredible. Just absolutely gutwrenching, intense, and really sad, but never giving in to despair. The level of respect the writers have for their characters is unparalleled.
 

Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window, Netflix's parody series of psychological thrillers (and very specifically Netflix's own 2021 movie The Woman in the Window) has some tone issues. It feels like it takes itself a bit too seriously/plays the concept a bit too straight for the absurd comedy bits to really land? Except, I think the denouement salvages the whole thing? Anyway it's nice for a streaming series to keep the episodes at a pretty standard 25 minutes.
 

YangusKhan

does the Underpants Dance
(He/Him/His)
I have a lot of mixed feelings about Euphoria; don't feel great about it as a show tbh.
The writing for everyone's storyline who isn't Rue can be problematic and perhaps too gratuitous, but everything related to Rue's relationship with drugs is always really really good. Which makes sense to me, because the showrunner has personal experience with that too.
 
It's weird. That's kind of just the tip of the iceberg for me tho Yangus. Euphoria from a moment-to-moment basis, and individual storylines/characters are usually well considered, portray valuable lived experiences of teenagers in empathetic, well considered ways. But the sheer volume and close proximity of all this debauchery and youth-problems is just dizzying. These sorts of things happen to kids, but at this volume and density probably almost never. And in the aggregate, it just paints this image of today's Zoomers just being completely out of control, hedonistic, crazy people. And in reality, it's honestly the exact opposite. Statistically speaking, Zoomers these days are orders of magnitude less likely than pretty much all of their predecessors to do drugs and have sex. Kids today have never been more conscientious, engaged, thoughtful, educated, etc. But the show just seemes designed to pray upon and exploit the paranoia and anxieties of stupid Boomers who just assume the kids aren't alright and will lap up anything that reaffirms their warped worldview. And that's before you get to the gratuitous creep factor of a show for adults about graphically sexy teens. I'm sure the people making the show - the actors, writers, directors, etc have good intentions. But the whole thing just feels sleazy and exploitative from a meta-textual perspective. It feels very much like HBO/WB brass that greenlit this show were like, "Mmmm yes give us more creepy Boomer-bait."
 

ArugulaZ

Fearful asymmetry
(announcer gravely intones) "In a world... where millennials are killing everything, the only thing left for them to destroy is the human race."
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Watched the first episode of Murderville today, and it was...fine? I have a feeling that its quality will vary greatly depending on the guest stars, though I was expecting Conan O'Brien would be a sure thing and he was mostly just okay. I'll give it another episode or two to see if it picks up.
 

jpfriction

A most radical pontiff
(He, Him)
Watched the first episode of Murderville today, and it was...fine? I have a feeling that its quality will vary greatly depending on the guest stars, though I was expecting Conan O'Brien would be a sure thing and he was mostly just okay. I'll give it another episode or two to see if it picks up.
I actually enjoyed Marshawn Lynch’s best of the first three. Just game for anything.
 
Resident Alien is back and is better than ever. It’s really leaning into what made the first season work, which is very encouraging. It was always a show that used its alien POV to examine the human condition to great effect. Like a modern day “I Am a Cat” by Soseki Natsume. But this new season is really falling in love with its characters. It’s a little less dark in tone and much less critical of these very flawed people, and is very much embracing and celebrating these characters - the female ones in particular - with an almost sentimentality. I’m very glad that Tom Paris from Voyager has struck this kind of gold.
 

John

(he/him)
It's weird. That's kind of just the tip of the iceberg for me tho Yangus. Euphoria from a moment-to-moment basis, and individual storylines/characters are usually well considered, portray valuable lived experiences of teenagers in empathetic, well considered ways. But the sheer volume and close proximity of all this debauchery and youth-problems is just dizzying. These sorts of things happen to kids, but at this volume and density probably almost never. And in the aggregate, it just paints this image of today's Zoomers just being completely out of control, hedonistic, crazy people. And in reality, it's honestly the exact opposite. Statistically speaking, Zoomers these days are orders of magnitude less likely than pretty much all of their predecessors to do drugs and have sex. Kids today have never been more conscientious, engaged, thoughtful, educated, etc. But the show just seemes designed to pray upon and exploit the paranoia and anxieties of stupid Boomers who just assume the kids aren't alright and will lap up anything that reaffirms their warped worldview. And that's before you get to the gratuitous creep factor of a show for adults about graphically sexy teens. I'm sure the people making the show - the actors, writers, directors, etc have good intentions. But the whole thing just feels sleazy and exploitative from a meta-textual perspective. It feels very much like HBO/WB brass that greenlit this show were like, "Mmmm yes give us more creepy Boomer-bait."
I just watched the pilot for this last night, and kinda see what you're saying about baiting olds, especially with the nudity. That said, I'm also a guy in his early 40's whose high school and college years were full of drugs and alcohol, and the house party in the first episode (minus the attack) was very reminiscent of some parties I went to. I witnessed people getting too frisky in the pool, the coke being lined out in the corner. It was just missing the cops showing up to break it up, with the helicopter to catch the runners.

I read a review saying the target audience is actually 35-45yo's who have kids aged 5-10. The writers are presumably around that age, reliving their debauchery while using it as a cautionary tale for the future teens. The pilot only had a couple nods to phones/texting and sexting, but not a ton of social media overall, which if this was picturing actual young kids would be a huge factor.

I've only seen the pilot, and maybe it gets repetitive or sticks to gross shocks ala Larry Clark's KIDS, but I'm curious to see where it goes.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
Naturally, I was completely on board just at the premise of “Taika Waititi makes a show about Stede Bonnet Starring Rhys D’Arby”, because Every word of that is laser targeted to me.

So it’s with no great surprise I can say Our Flag Means Death is great.
 

ozacrot

Jogurt Joestar
(he/him)
There's a lot of great TV running right now - Our Flag Means Death, Winning Time, and S2 of the Righteous Gemstones are all great - but I also wanted to call attention to Severance and The Afterparty, both on Apple TV.

The Afterparty is an eight-episode murder mystery miniseries set at a high school 15-year reunion. Each episode covers a different person's retelling of the night, which mimics a different genre every episode (rom-com, action, musical, etc.) All that might sound a bit risky, and some episodes don't play it as well as others, but it succeeds largely owing to two things: a cast of lovable ringers (Sam Richardson, Tiffany Haddish, Ben Schwartz, Ike Barinholtz, Ilana Glazer) and the direction of Chris Miller and Phil Lord.

Severance is something different altogether. It's a LOST-y thriller about a workplace where people have been "severed" - in other words, they have a completely separate identity at work that only exists within the office. Turns out that's pretty bad for brains! Like a bunch of great thrillers of recent years, each episode raises a lot more questions than it answers, but wisely isn't setting any expectations that everything will be revealed eventually. The visual design is really stunning and owes a lot to Control. It's possible that the pieces could fall apart on this one, but so far I'm really loving it.
 

Sprite

(He/Him/His)
Severance is basically a Black Mirror concept expanded to a series. I don’t know how long it can hold up but I’m definitely compelled by it so far. The featureless nightmarescape of the office makes for quite the setting.

CW: There is a rather intense suicide attempt.
 
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jpfriction

A most radical pontiff
(He, Him)
Yeah both of those are great although I found some of the Afterparty episodes a slog (especially the police procedure one from the detective’s POV).

I’m a big fan of Benny Schwa so he was a delight through the whole thing.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
The trick is to forget to cancel it after using a free trial; then you can watch it whenever you want!

That’s living life Octo Strong
 

jpfriction

A most radical pontiff
(He, Him)
Better yet, be on a family plan with a brother who did that.

I have a feeling I’m going to have to be the family member who finally signs up for paramount plus though.
 
Just got another free trial. (after the one (pre-pandemic?) for my phone) Days ago; forget what is was from. PS+? The app does not work on my old TV so I have to use it via a console...
 

Patrick

Magic-User
(He/Him)
I'm annoyed at how long the list of seemingly interesting Apple+ shows is getting
Hey, they just announced an animated Kate Beaton kids show.

I had a year long free trial when there wasn't much on the service. Now it does seem like there's a lot more to watch. We might give it another shot soon.
 
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