Posts Tagged ‘bbc’

It’s part 2 of the “you better abide by my TV guide” series, meaning today I will be looking at all the TV shows I will be watching over the coming weeks. All of which are of particular interest if you a) hate sport or b) live in the USA and already miss your fall TV.

First up, we have True Blood; Sundays HBO at 10.

Source: Entertainment weekly.

Christopher Meloni on True Blood
Source – Entertainment Weekly

I’m a firm believer that if it’s on HBO, it deserves at least a look. We’re talking the channel that brought us the Sopranos, Sex and the City and Game of Thrones. That’s bucket loads of quality right there. And while I wouldn’t tar True Blood with the same brush as it’s channel pals, it is still miles ahead of the competition.

Into its fifth series, it’s coming off the back of a disappointing season filled with too many witches, not enough Sookie and an anti-climactic end to Sookie’s origins. But the show runners have brought in SVU super lead Christopher Meloni to spruce up the cast, plus the return of the outstanding (and my personal favourite) Russell Edgington – that alone will keep me watching. And I am hoping he turns up sooner rather than later…

If you’ve not caught True Blood, purchase season 1 immediately if you like your vampires sexy and dangerous and not like they’ve just swallowed some pledge. Anyway, check it out and enjoy!

Next up is the BBC drama Silk; iPlayer

Silk is the most fun I’ve ever had (with a TV…) while being utterly clueless about what is going on. It’s a British legal drama following two barristers trying to get silk – a prestigious level among the justice system that takes years to achieve. Confused? Well to be honest, I don’t really get it either. I find myself watching long periods of legal mumbo jumbo with no clue whether the leads of the show are doing well, with just each characters reactions to gauge the plot. But that’s doesn’t matter. I don’t watch silk as it would probably help me pass the bar, I watch it because it’s the most honest look at any legal system I have ever come across.

Being a big time Law and Order fan, it takes a lot for me to enjoy other legal dramas because no show quite weaves and ducks like L&O. It makes you question things you thought were simple lines of the moral code. And it is the true embodiment of the fact that life is never black and white.

BBC’s Silk – Source: The Telegraph.

Silk however shows that our legal system really isn’t about right or wrong. In fact, that couldn’t be more untrue. Instead, the law, and justice is much more about how wealthy you are; how good your barrister is; and the roll of the die when it comes to the jury. We can kid ourselves into thinking it is about justice, but so often the courts are a far more shady affair.

Week in, week out Silk shows that. And shows the politics involved in every case. It is horrible to imagine yourself in the dock, accused of a crime. But it is even more distressing to realise that in our county – the most important factor isn’t whether or not you did it.

Finally, a very different Crime drama – Rizzoli and Isles; Tuesday’s, TNT.

Jane and Maura's first meeting.

Jane and Maura’s first meeting.

If you have ever waded through my blog posts, you would already know I love this show. Its not only my favourite Summer show, it’s one of my favourite shows full stop. Funny, well written, heart wrenching and with a stellar cast, Rizzoli and Isles follows two best friends as they solve homicides, one being a detective and the other the chief medical examiner.

The thing I like the most about this show is the humour. It makes me laugh equally as much as Family Guy and the Big bang – which, given it is a drama is √ľber impressive. The chemistry between Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander as the two leads sizzles (enough to get a considerable lesbian following) and the amazing use of Lorraine Braco as Rizzoli’s mum makes this the perfect show. If you like your crime dramas with a bit of sass then look no further (except if you’ve never experienced Veronica Mars…).

 

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I’m starting a new series of articles for Rather Be Mental this week. Its the ‘You better abide by my TV guide’ series (don’t laugh! It took me half an hour to think of that…) that will basically, with as much arrogance and gusto as I can muster, tell you what you should be watching. I will try do one for each week and they will cover shows from not just within the UK but also around the world.

First up this week – Lip Service; BBC3, Friday’s 9pm.

Now for those of you who know what Lip Service is, well you will probably be a bit surprised to find out I am a fan. Why? Well because it is a drama set in Glasgow, focusing on the lives of three lesbians. Now bear with me here! Firstly, it is a well written, fantastically acted drama first and foremost. And you certainly don’t need to be gay to get sucked into all the drama. Honestly, it is funny, smart and literally has me shocked week in, week out at the many twists and turns. Shocking me is difficult, so I have to give it its dues. Out of the cast, I have to give kudos to Fiona Button who plays Tess. Not only has she managed to build up the many layers of her character in just 10 short episodes, but she single handedly shouldered the funny aspects of the show and has me laughing every week. Newcomer Anna Skellern, who plays Lexie is also a favourite of mine and has a good balance between comedy and drama. Overall, it is a great drama that I really think is overlooked way too much by the critics simple because the characters are gay. Give it a look and check out the trailer, and if you want to catch up you can find all the episodes either on BBC iplayer or youtube. Enjoy!

Next up…

Silent Witness; Available on iPlayer

I think Silent Witness definitely deserves a mention, even though this series has very annoyingly come to an end. I say ‘very annoyingly’ as one of the episodes has been pulled by the BBC as it was too similar to a recent trial. My issue? Well, from watching the preview for the episode, it seems obvious that that was exactly what the writers were going for, and so I think it is silly to pull it. People have brains, they can distinguish fact from fiction and it would be nice if the BBC gave us a chance to do that.

Anyway, rant over – Silent Witness, if you didn’t already know, follows three pathologists as they solve crimes… Well I didn’t say it was realistic did I? It really isn’t actually, but what it lacks in substance, it certainly makes up for in style. Each episode has an invisible cloak over it that just oozes atmosphere, and the three central characters – particularly Harry and Nikki are extremely likeable to the point were we let the plot holes off. Plus, occasionally it shocks me when the killer is revealed… and that never happens when I watch the US shows! Check it out on iPlayer now, and take a look at the clip provided for a preview.

And finally…

Game of Thrones; Sky Atlantic, Wednesday, 10:15 pm (Or online if you can’t wait!)

If you are not already watching Game of Thrones, firstly – clear your schedule and catch up immediately; secondly – where the hell have you been?!

Every few years, a show comes a long that really changes TV. Lost taught us that TV can be as well produced and written as any movie; Buffy turned the slasher movie premise on its head in those first few lines, ¬†“I am the thing¬†that monsters¬†have nightmares about“; The Simpsons told us that cartoons were no longer just for kids; and ER made an impossible scene to shoot look really god damn easy.

And to be honest, there hasn’t been that many radical shows in recent years. True Blood comes close, with its mix of sex, gore and drama, it is hard to ignore how great that first series was – but it peaked and then it fell back down again. The Walking Dead also definitely earned a nod in the way it is possibly the scariest show on TV, and more than that, it is one of the best written shows in terms of character development – from a Zombie drama!

But, for me Game of Thrones surpasses both of the aforementioned. Why? Well because it is EPIC. This is a word that gets tossed around a lot in Hollywood – Sci Fi epic… Epic biography… blah blah blah. With Game of Thrones, I don’t use the word lightly. It really is epic. It had the gall to kill off one of the central characters, and most famous actors, in one foul swoop (I won’t say who for your own benefit!); it has a class A cast who week in, week out deliver Emmy deserving performances (and an actual Emmy for the outstanding Peter Dinklage); it takes us from the desert planes, to the icey wilderness beyond the wall delivering stunning cinematography at such ease that we come to expect it when we shouldn’t; and the writing – well that is second to none, and is the shows vibranium core to Iron Man’s super suit. Honestly, it is unlike any show I’ve ever seen. It makes the pilot of Lost look like a school production. And above all that, it has a wealth of story to use thanks to George RR Martin’s novels.

Seriously, don’t take my word for it. Check out the trailer for a preview – and catch up now.

Anyway, that’s it for now… remember – You better abide by my TV guide! It’s for your own good!

Hello there friends, colleagues, randoms. It is me, Hannah, here again to complain to you all about the little things. Yes, I did not start my blog with the intention of doing this, but I am going to do it anyway.

I’m a little slow on the uptake of this one, but I thought I’d vent my frustrations anyway. So what is it this week? Well I like sport – I know, I’m a girl – what is wrong with me?! Right TalkSport? And so as usual, when the World Athletics Championship was getting closer, I was wee’ing in excitement at the thought of watching Bolt go up against Powell, of seeing Ennis giving the proverbial¬†middle finger to Sports Personality of the Year once again by taking home the gold. And so, the days leading up to it arrived, when the god awful truth hit me. It’s on Channel 4. I know right? Call me old fashioned (Do it, I dare you!) but the athletics is one of those wonderfully sacred sports, that has its coverage, and I mean all it’s coverage, on BBC. This isn’t the Grand National people, it shouldn’t be relegated to the none sporting channel that is Channel 4!? It belongs in its rightful place, square in the timeslot, no adverts, and the wonderful sound that is Sue Barker laughing at another of Michaels terrible jabs at himself after Bolt’s broken another of his records. It’s just gospel.¬†

But no, the best of all the athletics – even better than that little even we call the¬†Olympics¬†– the world championships was being aired on FOUR?! So, I¬†dispensed¬†with my disbelief and realised, it’s just a channel – surely it can’t be that much worse can it? Ohhhhh past Hannah, how fucking wrong you are. And I’m not just referring to Ortis’ now nationally famous gaffe video (although he was painful to watch) but the whole thing was criminal. To begin with, no one even wanted to talk to channel 4. ¬†The track side interviews were unbearable at times, Alison Felix in particular looked very uncomfortable when Channel 4’s¬†correspondent¬†practically had to restrain her to get her to talk. But that’s not all – there was…¬†ADVERTS. I’m 21 years of age, I’ve never known a world where something wasn’t being advertised in my face 24/7. But when it comes to sport – no, just NO. It would be like ITV putting an advert right at the last 10 minutes in extra time in a FA Cup replay between Everton and Liverpool, right before a goal. Hmmm… oh wait… My point is, if it’s ongoing sport, you don’t have adverts until there is some sort of intermission in play. On BBC you had no adverts what so ever, so for Channel 4 to think it is okay to put adverts on every 5 minutes (and I’m not exaggerating here) is terrible! You’d have thought they would have been smart enough to tone it down a bit.

But alas, I grinned and bared the track side nonsense, I tried to keep myself busy when the adverts came on, again and the stupid ringtone-like noise sounded to mark that. But then there was the moment that it physically stopped my enjoyment of the Championships. And that was not on. Jess Ennis is a human being. She is not¬†infallible. Bolts dejection from the 100 metre final proved no athlete is. But for her to very proudly, and positively speak about her joy (not her disappointment) and getting the silver at Daegu not the gold was very noble and brave of her. So, for fucking Rick Edwards to then, on the voice over say, “Ohhh she’s disappointed, and let down, us all…” etc was a disgrace! We as a nation, on that moment needed the positive. Jess needed that moment to be a positive. For the sake of her mentality and future training. How dare he say that! And it didn’t stop at a line or one turn of phrase. Every time she was mentioned, he slapped on the negative, nice and thick. I could deal with the unprofessionalism, I could deal with the sloppy programming, and I could even deal with watching a sport show be presented by someone who knows nothing about sport (although that in itself was insulting…) but I could not deal with him making her feel small. I just hope that Jess didn’t watch it back. And that she never knows what he said for fear that she thinks the whole nation see’s her as a ‘big disappointment’. Because I think I speak for the majority of us when I say – we don’t. And Jess Ennis is a fantastic athlete who had a slight hiccup, but who also achieved a massive thing when she got that silver. So Rick – when you win a gold fucking medal, or even become an athlete who trains¬†incessantly for years,¬† you can call her what ever you want. But until that moment, keep your negative opinions to yourself!¬†Oh and Channel 4, GIVE THE ATHLETICS BACK TO THE BBC, WHERE THEY BELONG!¬†

Check out some of Ortis’ presenting gaffes. PAINFUL!

**oh and fyi, I complained to Channel 4 about all of this. They basically said I was entitled to my opinion, but I was wrong lol. And kudos to Michael Johnson for holding the whole thing together!