Thursday, November 04, 2010

For no reason

Shows I thought I'd hate but actually loved:

Babylon 5
Why I thought I'd hate it: "Great, another space station show." Where I lived at the time, it aired on the same channel immediately after Star Trek: Deep Space 9, one of my three least favorite ST franchises.
Why I liked it instead: good acting (amongst the regulars - the extras sometimes stunk), excellent writing, an actual story arc instead of just stand-alone episodes, and *gasp* social and political conflicts that were not neatly resolved by the end of an hour, minus commercials. Plus the special effects were awesome for a TV show at the time.

Veronica Mars
Why I thought I'd hate it: for some reason, I thought it was a 30 minute girly teenie sitcom.
Why I liked it instead: everything I thought about it was so far off it applies equally to The Shield, Jeopardy and Monday Night Football with as much accuracy. The show was an hour-long edgy PI thingy with a lot of overtones of class discrimination, only set mostly at school starring the cute bunny-sized non-bunny Kristen Bell.

Why I thought I'd hate it: shows and movies never live up to the books upon which they're based.
Why I liked it instead: the writing in the show is actually better. The titular character is less consistent than in the book, but I think the change was a good idea and necessary to make the character interesting enough to carry a series and palatable for the general public. In the show, he refers to himself as a monster but demonstrates he is capable of caring and growing emotionally. In the book, he is defined by his inability to do those things. Note - the first book and first season are somewhat similar for about the first half, then diverge and go in completely separate directions so you can enjoy both without one being a retread of the other.

Sons of Anarchy
Why I thought I'd hate it: while lying in a hospital bed for a week, I saw the same commercial for this show over and over and Over and OVER and OVER!!! And the dialog, taken out of context, sounded like horrible drivel being delivered by people reading cue cards (poorly).
Why I liked it instead: for some reason I watched an actual episode. AWESOME! It's funny and touching and violent, the dialog is great, and yes, one character does have a very wooden way of speaking, but you realize it fits his personality when you see an entire episode and not the same two lines of dialog spoken at you 37,124 times per day as you lay in an uncomfortable sick bed waiting for the next needle stick.

Shows I thought I'd love but actually hated:

Arrested Development
Why I thought I'd like it: edgy comedy showcasing bad people doing bad things. Recommended for people who enjoyed Better Off Ted.
Why I disliked it instead: the core of the plot revolves around around a monumentally dysfunctional family. I've lived that for about 35 years and then partially extricated myself (although you will never, ever, ever run out of people wanting to know more about your family who will feel prompted to field another thousand questions when you say "we're estranged" or something else conveying that the subject is uncomfortable to you and you'd rather move on), and the topic always annoys me to the point that I can't appreciate whatever else it has to offer.

Six Feet Under
Why I thought I'd like it: lots of recommendations and comparisons to other shows I like.
Why I disliked it instead: see Arrested Development above. Also, very well written and acted but otherwise nothing like the other shows I like.

Why I thought I'd like it: good word of mouth and promises that it was filled with wacky.
Why I disliked it instead: actually I'm on the fence about this one. It didn't provide the level of wacky I'd heard, but the main thing was that it's the only show I've ever watched that made me feel like I would have appreciated it 25 years ago but now I'm just too old to "get it" or care that I don't. After digging Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Veronica Mars, Zim the Invader and Justice League Unlimited, that was an unexpected reaction. I think I'll give the second disc a try to see how it goes.

As usual, if your opinion differs from mine then it's proof I am the superior being and Jesus will pop out your eyes and skull fuck you in the afterlife


Muskrat said...

The only show on this list I've seen is Glee, and I liked it pretty well, but I only watched a couple episodes last year--none this year (and I've heard it's not as good this year--ie, they're trying too hard).

Jay said...

The first three seasons of Sons of Anarchy is great TV. This season isn't quite as good, but still better than most.

The best think Glee has going for it is Lea Michelle's hotness. Oh and the two blond cheerleaders' hotness too.

Kira said...

Alex and I watched the first season of Glee and loved it. We haven't seen any of season two, though. I've never seen the others on your "didn't like" list, though.

Bab 5 and Dexter are both on my own personal "loved it although I thought I'd hate it" list, too, but for different reasons.

Lady Tragic said...

The only shows in your list I've seen were Bab5 and a few episodes of Glee. I like to make fun of Bab5 because I don't think real aliens have visible zippers but otherwise, it was a fun little show.. Glee was good for the first few episodes I watched then it just got so tired.. It's almost as though the wacky has been replaced by the Hallmark of commercial music and screw real timelines in any story..

My own TV tastes? Weird. Really weird. I love crime dramas and true crime crap on A&E but I also love mindless stupidity like Robot Chicken and Jersey Shore.. I'm horrible, I know this. It is what it is..

Also, I cried when 1701-D crashed.

Avitable said...

Give Glee some more time - I like it just for the reimaginings of some of my favorite songs.

Here are some more:

Walking Dead - on AMC Sundays at 10. Must watch this!

Pushing Daisies
Freaks & Geeks
Battlestar Galactica
True Blood

Kerry said...

I'm a Sons fan. sometimes the way of speaking gets irritating and hard to follow... but I love the show!

Grant said...

Muskrat - you wacky kids with your cable TV. I only watch stuff available from Netflix.

Jay - I prefer Jenna Ushkowitz and her "I kissed a girl" song myself.

Kira - I liked the football player's way of stopping an evil erection.

Lady Tragic - how dare you be so insensitive to aliens from planet Zipper? I only hope you show a little more racial sensitivity when their Velcroidian cousins visit. :p

Avitable - being totally metal, the music was not at all what drew me to Glee. I am into Pushing Daisies, but I didn't include it because I had no negative expectations going in. I'll look at True Blood, but I have the feeling it will be all downhill after Anna Paquin's breasts.

Kerry - Katey Sagal gets hotter with age. I can't wait until she turn 60. Plus I think there are some guys in the show, but that's a minor detail.

Robin said...

Can I throw Skins into the hat? Just for the fun of it.

I didn't think I'd like Veronica Mars, I thought it was going to be sci-fi for some reason and now I'm obsesed. Six Feet Under is one of the best shows I've ever watched.