2017 minus 25: It’s “what I’m watching” wednesday (Part 4)

Posted: 7 December 2016 in 2017 minus

Previously on “It’s ‘what I’m watching’ Wednesday: Part 1; Part 2; Part 3. 

Let us continue. 

As I’ve said, while I occasionally mention “tv shows I don’t like that everyone else does” I rarely tell you what I do like watching. So, continuing in no particular order, what tv am I enjoying right now?

I wish I could tell you why I liked this show. I’m not sure I can. At its heart, it means well, but there’s something missing, while there’s enough there to keep me watching… but when it’s off for a week, I kind of don’t really care? Yeah, it’s that kind of show. Clever concept for the show: party girl and former First Daughter gets tapped (kind of blackmailed) into running a Conviction Integrity Unity by an ex-boyfriend, now District Attorney. The idea is they don’t care if the convict did it or not; they’re just as happy at knowing the right guy is locked up as they are setting the wrongly convicted free. I’m half a dozen episodes through the first season and so far they’re hitting all the marks I’d expect: set an innocent person free; three were convicted together… turns out one was guilty, the other two not; evil person wrongly convicted, how to get the right person convicted but not let the evil one out?

I’m guessing a future episode will deal with someone who did it but was absolutely wrongly convicted or someone who was innocent but should have been found guilty with the evidence alone; they’ve come close so far but not quite there. The sub-plot of family drama is very sub-plottish and isn’t anywhere as clever as the show seems to think it is. Hmm. 

And yet I keep watching. I wonder why.

The Librarians
Remember what I said last week, that I enjoyed NCIS because it’s enjoyable, reliable and fun? Yeah, same applies in spades to The Librarians. Originally a three tv-movie thing about, basically, an Indiana Jones type thing but with a genuine nerd, not an action hero as the lead. It was cute, funny, had clever writing and great – though occaisonally deliberately hammy – acting. Then someone had the bright idea of turning it into a tb series; it could have gone very wrong, but instead it turned out great. Again, clever writing, wonderful acting, great chemistry among the cast… and silly as hell while maintaining just the right amount of tension. And a guaranteed deus ex mechina every episode. I mean, yeah, usually I hate that kind of thing, but it’s built into the show so you swallow it and suddenly you’re waiting to see what this week’s is. It’s ludicrously inconsistent, normally has plot holes you can drive a truck through… and you know what? I don’t care. This is a fun show to watch and everyone’s having a blast making it.

Agents of SHIELD
Once upon a time, this was a clever show about what it’s like to be a secret agent for a secret team in a world of super-heroes and villains. At some point during the last season that changed and ever since then, this show seems like it’s going through the motions. I’m still watching because the individual performances by the actors are still great. And watching some of them, you can see genuinely good acting, great performances. And the effects are incredibly good; entirely naturalistic, by which I mean that of course theu’re special effects, but they’re done so bloody well, they don’t look like special effects.  

A Special Note about The Arrowverse crossover
Yeah, I know I covered the four shows in the first of these reviews (link above) but now they’ve done a four part crossover (well, three part really, involving one character from the fourth show) a few extra words. I’m not sure what it is about crossovers in the Arrowverse, but by god they’re good. This one was particularly good; each part totally true to the different style of each of Arrow, The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow while telling one story, dealing with sub-plots throughout and with each ofthe main characters learning and moving and growing. The final scene, with Oliver and Barry having a drink in a bar and just talking about their lives, was the first time, the first time in three years, that you saw the former treat the latter as a genuine equal. Not for effect, not as a pep talk but as a genuine equal. The interaction etween the casts was excellent and every bit of friction you’d expect was there, as well as some genuinely surprising meetings of minds. The crossover didn’t put a foot wrong, not one.

OK, so that’s another few shows I like. To end with again, here’s a new show this season that I tried, but gave up on.

Pure Genius
Once again, a clever concept (young tech billionaire sets up a high-tech top of the range medical facility using start of the art tech to solve medical problems, but what else is going on?) And once again, what would have been a clever TV movie, or even series of movies… is… what? I have no idea. I watched the trailer and then the extended trailer (otherwise known as the pilot) and was intrigued enough to watch episode 2. Or rather to watch about the first half of episode 2, after which I gave up on the show. The acting is wooden, not one of the characters are believeable, the tech is pretty cool, I’ll accept but I have no idea what on the show is a genuine extrapolation of tech that already exists and what is pure fantasy. After an episode and a half, I could not remember most of the main chacarers names, had no idea why any of them outside two main leads were there (money or desire to do good?) and kept thinking “why am I watching this?” SO I stopped asking, and stopped watching. 

See you tomorrow, with something else. 

This post is part of a series of blog entries, counting down to 1st January 2017. You can see other posts in the run by clicking here.

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