TV – What’s On (March 2013)

What’s On is a little thing I’ll try to do often as possible, where I talk about shows that have recently started up on TV. I’ll give a short review and then my rating. Pretty simple stuff.

So, what’s on?

* * * * *

ELEMENTARY

IMDB Rating: 7.6/10 (17,021 votes)

Elementary, my dear Joan.

Elementary, my dear Joan.

Well, as far as Police Procedural shows go, Elementary is just another Law & Order: Originals wannabe.

It could have been great, too. Elementary had the opportunity to be less of a “new case every week” kind of thing and more of a character-driven show. But it’s lack of attention to the main characters – Watson and Holmes – means it only gives them 4 or 5 minutes per episode to really create a back-story.

They tried to surround Holmes’ world in a subplot of reckless behavior once caused by a drug addiction. But they never fully committed to this subplot and instead, they only briefly touch on it each episode. It seems to me the creators were looking for a new, inventive way to recreate not only Holmes, but Watson too. Instead they’ve, for lack of a better phrase, written a draft but not followed up.

The cases aren’t bad, though. They’re interestingly figured out, which is always good. That means they at least have half decent writers working on it. But I’m frustrated with the writers, too. There’s a back-story creeping about in it’s lair, and it’s banging on the bars in annoyance. It’s there; the writers just aren’t paying close attention.

Elementary had the chance to interest people by twisting a normal investigation show into a show exploring the mind of the greatest detective ever. But it wasn’t to be.

MY RATING: 6.5 out of 10. Worth a watch if you enjoy shows like Law & Order: Originals, and aren’t too fussed about switching off your mind for a bit.

ARROW

IMDB Rating: 8.2/10 (48,402 votes)

They didn't explain how he learnt to use the Arrow, did they?

They didn’t explain how he learnt to use the Arrow, did they?

This particularly bland take on the Green Arrow is pretty awful, if you ask me.

From the get go, this show had me in a noose. They were teasing me into thinking they would kick the chair under me. But they haven’t. So I’m left sitting here, bored and with rope burn.

The characters in this show are incredibly unlikable. From bad mother to stupid daughter, the bad character development has no substance or respectability.

The mother is annoying, and refuses to connect with her son even though he’s come back after 5 years and she’s completely forgot about her old husband. She’s remarried, power hungry and just an awful mother. She pays no attention whatsoever to her unbelievably rebellious daughter, who unbeknownst to her mother, gets absolutely wasted every second night. And where’s the sympathy for the man who’s been on an island for 5 years and had to see a boat-load of people die?

The sister is like a spider in your bedroom – you wish she wasn’t there. Her obnoxious attitude makes her one of the few women in the world I’d consider slapping. She needs a good talking to. I have no idea why she’s so aggressive towards Oliver, but I guess she’s just out of teen-hood – or still in it – and we have to expect that. Well, do we?

The storyline isn’t getting across and makes me wonder if the writers care at all about the success of this show. It’s just like a big-budget movie-  it has no real substance, it’s just nice to look at.

MY RATING: 4 out of 10. I wouldn’t bother with this guff. Don’t waste your time.

HOUSE OF CARDS

IMDB Rating: 9/10 (20,315 votes)

Francis Underwood is Majority Whip....what is a Majority Whip?

Francis Underwood is Majority Whip….what is a Majority Whip?

This show is good in theory. But it’s far too political for a guy like me.

Now, I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. It’s just that I don’t know politics. I don’t know American politics. And it’s unfortunate too, because I’m very interested in American history, American politics and really, all things America. I just don’t know a whole lot yet. Maybe I’ll watch again in a year, when I understand it better.

There’s a lot of political lingo and terms used. It’s actually very well written in terms of dialogue. Kevin Spacey is a brilliant actor and I’m a huge fan of his. It’s just such a shame that I don’t understand most of the stuff he’s talking about.

I don’t know how Robin Wright keeps getting a job. But she does. And after her performances in this show, I’m bewildered. Not only is the character a bad one at heart, but her acting is weak. The character as a whole is unlikable and I wish she wasn’t written in so poorly. I wouldn’t mind a recast, actually. Maybe that would’ve evened things up.

Ultimately, this show isn’t for me. The themes of revenge and retribution make a good show, and when I understand more of it, I’m sure I’ll grow to love this show. The idea of it is a good one. It just isn’t for me…

…yet.

MY RATING: 7 out of 10. Watch if you like American politics and understand it. Don’t watch if you…don’t.

* * * * *

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