Tag: TV Shows

Enola Holmes!

Finally, a reason to want to buy a subscription to Netflix … THIS!

I mean, come on! Sherlock Holmes’ younger sister, Enola (Millie Bobby Brown,) taking centre stage to solve the puzzle of what’s happened to her mother—who is, of course, played by the superb Helena Bonham Carter. Yes, I’m all in just to see this. The trailer looks like great fun.

Based on the books by Nancy Springer and set in Victorian London (1884), Enola Holmes puts a youthful, female spin of the endeavours of the detective family. With Henry Cavill switching from his Witcher uniform and white hair, to play Sherlock, and Sam Claflin taking on the role of Mycroft. Yet you just know Enola isn’t gong to play ball with her two older brothers and takes it upon herself to become a detective, and find her mother on her own.

Star Trek: Lower Decks

One of the TV channels up here, in the Frozen North, premiered the first episode, for free, of Star Trek: Lower Deck’s new animated series. Me and mine were beside ourselves to watch it, hoping for the best. But then, we learned that the production was by the same team that did the Rick and Morty show and, we nearly bailed right there and then.

However, we prevailed. We sat down to watch the first episode and … didn’t make it past the giant spider—that was it for me. I just couldn’t get into it. The pace was frenetic, weird, and the humour? Well, let’s say, for me at least, was humourless.

The show is supposed to provide us with a dose of geeky goodness, but ‘Oh My‘ this was really not my idea or, what I might have envisioned happening on any lower decks within the Star Trek universe. And the bat’leth accident? Was that really supposed to be funny?

Oh, I am sure this one is going to get high ratings for CBS’s All Access channel. But I won’t be counted in that number.

Which is a shame, because the show is voiced by some excellent voice talent, with Ensign Beckett Mariner (Tawny Newsome), Ensign Brad Boimler (Jack Quaid), Ensign Tendi (Noël Wells), the cyborg Ensign Rutherford (Eugene Cordero), Captain Carol Freeman (Dawnn Lewis), Commander Jack Ransom (Jerry O’Connell), Lieutenant Shaxs (Fred Tatasciore), and Dr. T’Ana (Gillian Vigman).

Ah, well, we sat, we watched, we rolled our eyes. And then went and read a book.

Thanks, but no thanks!

Binge-Worthy TV #4

Actually, calling the TV shows I’m about to discuss binge-worthy is a misnomer. Neither, as it turns out were of the calibre to be called binge-anything, let alone worthy.

First up is the Jez Butterworth written, Sky TV Amazon Prime coproduction, BRITANNIA. This supposed historical drama is only historical in that it’s set in AD 43, and that’s about it. Any resemblance to historical ‘fact’ is lost in translation, as they say. The show follows the Roman conquest of Britain, with some locations filmed in Wales, but mostly in the Czech Republic. Which accounts for some of the stunning scenery we get to see.

This is, in short, a campy fantasy straight out of the twisted imagination of the writer, Jez Butterworth. And while the scenery and settings are stark, forbidding, lush, and mysterious, the acting leaves a lot to be desired. Then there’s the  crazy-ass dialogue in which each and every ‘hip’ character talks as if they’re in a London Wine Bar discussing the weather. It’s absurd to the point of being hilarious. Several times my partner and I burst out laughing, and no, not because the excessive violence was funny, but because we just couldn’t believe our ears.

Then there’s the acting, which ranges from the down right camp—Zoë Wannamaker, I’m looking at you—to the melodramatic verging on farcical pantomime. The only redeeming character throughout the several episodes we struggled through so far has been the young lead, Eleanor Worthington Cox, who plays Cait.

This one might have scored higher had they thrown in a couple of dragons, but isn’t something I would recommend in less you’re looking for a farcical comedy of errors.

The second show we tried to watch is the BBC’s adaptation of Agatha Christie’s THE ABC MURDERS, starring the usually reliable John Malkovich. But after struggling through the first episode both my partner and I were of the same opinion, this one was a hit and miss affair. If you can get past the really, really strange accent Malkovich favours for his portrayal of Hercule Poirot, the gloomy atmospheric settings, and the glacial pacing where every last nuanced glance and look is filmed in minute detail, then you might actual make it through all three episodes and find out, who did it. But take it from me, you might die of boredom before you get there.

Binge-Worthy TV #3

Our binge-watching marathons continues apace.

After we gobbled up 2 seasons of the Euro-centric co-production, THE TUNNEL, and watched the mini series, TRIANGLE, starring Sam Neil—which, by the way, was a silly bit of fun where the American Navy are trying to close a breech in space time created by the Philadelphia Experiment (which may, or may not have taken place) and, in turn, spawned a movie or two.

We decided to watch something a little less cheesy and jumped into the BBC TV 6-part series, THE STATE WITHIN, a tight political thriller starring Jason Isaacs (he of Harry Potter and Star Trek: Discovery fame) and Sharon Gless from one of my all-time favourite TV shows ever, CAGNEY & LACEY.

What is interesting about this mini series, which aired back in the UK in 2006 and was nominated for 2 Golden Globe Awards, is how relevant the premise is in the here and now. Nothing appears to have changed in the ensuing 14 years and similar situations depicted may have, in fact, gotten worse. It’s certainly well worth finding on DVD and watching.

After cheesy SF and tense political intrigue, we took a short break before taking a TURN, and joined Jamie Bell and cast in Turn: Washington’s Spies, a 4-season period drama set during the American Revolutionary War in which we see the creation of America’s first ever spy ring.

We are a couple of episodes into season 1 and loving it so far, despite the fact historical accuracy has been sacrificed (and, isn’t it always) in the name of drama.

Binge-Worthy TV #2

Oh boy, I didn’t expect at the end of last year, even with the long holidays we enjoyed here, to be watching so much TV or, I should say, TV drama series, as we have. And, let me tell you, the binge watching has continued apace without so much as us missing a step.

The latest series to capture our attention was THE TUNNEL, centred on (yes, you guessed it) the Euro tunnel. The series features both Brit and French actors and gripping storylines that had us hooked from the first episode—one where a severed body is found in an access tunnel of the Tunnel, right on the demarkation line (that delineates English soil, and French.) However, the top part of the body, on the French side, is that of a French diplomat, while the lower extremity, on the English side, is that of a well-known prostitute.

Do I have your attention?

It certainly had ours. And, as a result, we’ve whizzed, and I mean, absolutely whizzed our way through both season 1 and 2 these last few weeks! And while season 1 focused in on the bizarre murder in the access tunnel, season 2, featuring the same cast, centred on a whole new premise with a terrorist team downing a commuter jet in the channel. Heart pounding stuff, believe me!

We also discovered there’s already a season 3 out and available. So if you’re wondering why I haven’t posted any book reviews lately, know you know why.

FYI: weird fact — the actress, Clémence Poésy, who plays Captain (later Commandant) Elise Wassermann in The Tunnel, also played Fleur Delacour in the Harry Potter movie, The Goblet of Fire.