#MagnumPI sequel about his daughter in works at @ABCNetwork from John Rogers & @EvaLongoria (Exclusive) https://t.co/U5hyNgQOXC
— Deadline Hollywood (@Deadline) September 22, 2016
On the one hand, the Spousal Unit and I adored Leverage, which was John Rogers’ creation (along with the infamous 27% Factor).
But on the other hand, neither of us ever watched an episode of the original Magnum, P.I. — it was the 80s, home recording technology was still in its infancy and television in general wasn’t much further along. And we were both involved in sf fandom / tabletop RPGs, which in those primitive days meant hand-crafting fanzines, apas, and character sheets, not to mention longform reading.
So… those of you who know more of the source material: Is this particular reboot liable to be worth watching?
And apart from the current parlous state of pop culture, what’s on the agenda for the day?
Magnum PI was shit.
Death Panel Truck
Consider yourselves fortunate.
@Death Panel Truck: me neither
Heading off to the Common Ground Fair in Unity this morning. Should be a lot of fun.
Formulaic pap. But compared to dreck like Supertrain it was high art.
It was meant to be fun. A Rockford Files in Hawaii. A breezy detective show, carried by the charm of the lead actor, boosted by a great group of character actors.
It was fun.
West Coast reader up at four this morning to take the wifely unit to the airporter. It’s not even first light yet. No human should be alive at this time. Anyway, I have a week without supervision that starts when I regain consciousness in a few hours. Here’s the plan…go shopping and grab a pork shoulder for a super long slow cook on the BBQ and make sliders tonight. I’ll be working on the Chevelle while the pork does it’s thing. I’m going to separate the body from the frame. I’ve built a wheeled rack to put the the body on casters and to be able to take the body for blasting (there’s about and inch of bondo hiding some horrors) meanwhile I can start in on the frame. There’s a kit to widen the wheel wells I think I’m going to install. This project is the most fun I’ve had with my pants on. I’d just like to finish it but next year. Want to drive to HotRod power tour one of these days.
@Politically Lost: What year? 396?
What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us?
I never watched it regularly but when I did watch it, I enjoyed it. As Dan notes it was a mix of humor, action and mystery. Rockford Files in Hawaii is a pretty good shorthand description. Tom Seleck is likable but he’s probably a step down from James Gardner. For its time is was good television but I’m not sure it’s time should be known for the quality of the TV programming. It may not have been good, but it was better than its contemporaries like The Fall Guy, T.J. Hooker, and The A Team, among others.
@Politically Lost: This was my truck a few years back. https://flic.kr/p/i6fV7
Loved the movie Brooklyn a few weeks ago. Couldn’t get back to sleep this am so watched The Idiot Brother with Paul Rudd. One of my favorite Rudd movies is This Is 40.
I’d like to get the dvd box set of West Wing but so expensive.
Ugh, who the hell wants to watch a remake of that dreck? One of the worst shows from one of the worst eras of tv. I didn’t watch much tv in those days because so much of it was so bad. And Magnum could be the poster child for the badness.
I am happy they are thinking of a woman for the show. That, from the ’80’s is progress, considering The A Team had a famously sexist attitude.
Speaking of which, you are on the run from eight different kinds of law enforcement, world wide, yet you all drive around in a big van with THE A TEAM airbrushed on the side, and Dr. T driving.
Way to do it, fellas.
I was a 10 year old kid when it was on and I just watched it because of the Ferrari 308gts. Literally, the plot was secondary to the car for me. Maybe the guy with the mustache would fight or break into a house or something, but I was always hoping that the red Ferrari would get more airtime.
The old broadcast networks are very risk-adverse. They like sequels, spin-offs, next generation, and reboots of prior hit shows because they believe they’ll have a built-in audience. At least a next-gen “Magnum” won’t be another crappy, cheap reality show.
Who wears short shorts? Magnum PI wears short shorts!
I still catch reruns on TV occasionally, and I watched a lot of it as a kid. They really are trying to get as much mileage from the “reboot with women” concept as they can, but they’re gonna run it into the ground. I’m somewhat surprised the MacGuyver reboot wasn’t done that way.
True, but isn’t Magnum one of those shows that have always been shown in syndication?
I remember that at the end of the 1980s when MTV Europe started (I am Belgian) plenty of its shows were imports from its US motherhsip, and one of them was a quiz about popular culture which often involved questions about “ancient” TV shows. I didn’t understand at the time why those candidates knew so much about twenty year old shows, until I learned about the wealth of US TV stations and the endless repeats of old shows through syndication.
Those are the absolute worst, IMHO. I can kinda get into Kitchen Nightmares and Bar Rescue and such that actually show how a certain system is supposed to work. But the whole “8 dysfunctional people in a room” thing squicks me out.
In addition, I thought somebody made their money in reruns and syndication. Does anybody want to watch these things again?
Very watchable, distinctly middlebrow TV. The series finale was much better than most. With all remakes, extreme caution advised.
The Thin Black Duke
Remember, we need to thank Magnum P.I. for sparing us the blasphemy of seeing Tom Selleck as Indiana Jones.
@WereBear: everything now has a girl lead–there is a pretty good show “Wynona Earp” about a buffyesque heir to the earp family responsibility to kill zombies, -and simething simething i havent watched about a female van helsing who fights vampires. I wiukdnt get too hung up about the magnum part of the show. Instead just rejoice that they see young wimen as an important audience.
Steve in the ATL
I feel your pain–I had a 6:15 am flight last Saturday so up at 4:30 am. I was motivated, though, as the flight was leaving Detroit.
Of course, getting up at 4:30 am is just a normal day for raven!
@Raven: It’s a 66. I got it in 2001. It’s not an SS and didn’t come with a big block. It has a small block that was on the mild side. That will change! It had a three on the tree connected to a cast iron Saginaw three speed however some genius cut a hole in the floor and cobbled a shifter directly to the tranny. Over the years I’ve been collecting pieces at swap meets and craigslist. I found a floor shift steering column, an M21 Muncie, an extra entire dash with the AC vents. Two years ago one of the restoration houses was having an insane sale and I scored the entire interior. I was supposed to get started on this project in 2003 but I went to law school instead. I should have worked on the car and not gone to law school.
I do! It’s a great advance. Role modeling for the win.
Steve in the ATL
I feel your pain
@WereBear: No, nobody wants to rewatch reality shows – there’s no syndication, they rarely bother making DVDs, and no streaming service will pay more than pocket change for the rights.
But compared to the cost of paying actual *professionals* to act, direct and edit your work, the lost money doesn’t matter.
How fast is a Magnum Pi? Will it run Linux?
What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us?
@geg6: I agree it was one of the worst eras in TV…but disagree that Magnum P.I. was one of the worst shows of the era. It was far better than many of its contemporaries, which granted is faint praise, but if you’re going to remake a show from the ’80s it has potential. I mean, the location is spectacular and mystery/crime shows never seem to go out of style.
@Steve in the ATL: Nothing like entering a new market at the exact time of the worst economic collapse in living memory. Maybe I’ll start a newspaper next…
Magnum PI was about 50/50: wholey predictable with avg acting and some rather good writing behind it. It was good smoking dope fodder.
Steve in the ATL
@Politically Lost: I graduated in a recession, too, but there wasn’t such a glut of lawyers then at least. What’s your field?
@Steve in the ATL: Estate litigation mostly and fair bit of estate planning with a lot of teaching thrown in so that I can eat. The litigation is niche around these parts as most planning attorney’s have a ball shriveling fear of a court room. You?
Just off the top of my head, there was a two-parter where he found out he had a daughter, and had to let her go. So, fast forward 20 or so years, and she is all grown up, and doing what daddy used to do in the same beautiful locations, but the folks producing the show aren’t competing with ‘Loveboat”, “Fantasy Island” or “Miami Vice” anymore. They now have to compete against cable and Netflix to get eyeballs, and if the writing is good (and I’m gonna say it will with John Rodgers), they could make it past the first season without jumping the shark.
Well I have the theme now stuck in my head now and if you had anything to do with Winter Guard International at the time and had to watch countless B and C guards perform to it, you wouldn’t want to hear it (or the theme from SWAT) ever again.
Steve in the ATL
@Politically Lost: Labor and employment. Hence last week in Detroit, bargaining with a contentious and not very good union.
Iowa Old Lady
IMHO, most remakes and a lot of sequels are total wastes of effort. I’m trying to think of a remake that’s better than the original or a book sequel that’s better than the first one in the series. I haven’t had coffee yet and I’m coming up blank.
@Iowa Old Lady: The cartoon series based on the Beatles? Always enjoyed watching them plug their guitars into wall sockets and nary a speaker in sight.
@Iowa Old Lady:
@Politically Lost: My brother had a ’67 Tempest that was a beautiful car with some weird features. It had an overhead cam straight-6 with a belt drive, that was insanely quiet. Unusual for a 1967 American car. It also had a homemade 3-on-the-floor like what you’ve described. That shifter had a bad habit of getting jammed up in its own workings, and about once a month someone had to crawl under the car to unstick it.
@WereBear: Eight dysfunctional people in a room?
I loved “Drawn Together” more than is humanly defensible on its artistic merits. And that was years ago. Even then I had my fill of reality TV.
Did the same producers of The Ellery Queen Show (’75?) (and Murder She Wrote) also do Magnum PI? John Hillerman shows up in both.
@Iowa Old Lady: The remake of Body Snatchers was good. Aliens was a delightful as Alien, though in a different way.
It can be done. So often, though, they just don’t bother. Jaws, I’m looking at you.
Good Morning ?, Everyone ? again.
Heh: The STL post disgrace has been doing a fluff series on various houses around and about the greater STL area, some of them very high end, others on the more interesting or quirky side. They have one today that is definitely of the interesting/quirky variety. I should know. I did most** of the carpentry in it. It was a fun project to work on, took about a year and a half. They’d say, “Tom, we want this kind of sort of thing over here and we want it to look like this.” And I’d say, “Sure.” And then go about figuring out how to build it.
Red, artist that she is, is mentioned by name. I, craftsman that am, am “the carpenter who built what they needed” and the “friend” she commissioned to build the mantel. Lest any one think this a whine, it isn’t. A carpenter isn’t supposed to be known by anything other than the work he leaves behind him. But it is still kinda fun to see something other than a high rise I studded up and hung the drywall in on the front page of the local rag.
**I almost said all of the carpentry, but while John, Orene, and I became very good friends, I haven’t seen them since I moved out here 14 years ago and I’m quite sure they found someone to pick up where I left off.
There is a lot of good television out there. This doesn’t interest me, anymore than the reboot of MacGiver.
@Dan: Magnum PI was crap compared to Rockford Files. The latter had developed characters and plots, plus James Garner in polyester sport coats and a brown Firebird. Caught a bit of the flavor of the underside of southern California. Magnum was a cartoon. A sequel would suck.
John Rogers was part of the group playing ‘Fiasco’ on Season 1 of Tabletop. I thought that if they took the Fiasco storylines and made a movie of the week like the old Tuesday Mystery Movie (Columbo/MacMillion and Wife/McCloud), it could be a very good show. Ok, so the ending in every show would be a bit of a downer, but it could beat the heck out of any of ‘reality tv’ show on the air.
@RobertB: My mom had a 1960 Rambler that had “3 on the tree” and was missing some bushings on the linkages. About 5% of the time, something would jamb on trying to shift from first to second. It was exciting, especially on rainy nights.
Rooom… (Will it make it?) snick, snick (Will it make it?) snick, snick, Roooommmm! :-)
It was a horrible car – the right headlight would blow out going over bumps, etc., etc., but it had a split bench seat that would fold down totally flat – handy those times when we needed to sleep in it…
@Politically Lost: Ha! My 66 also has a 3 speed saginaw and I’m the idiot that cut the hole in the floor for my Hurst! I have a 4 bolt main 350 but I left the 2BBL on instead of upping to a quad.
This is the way to do it. If you can’t let old franchises die in peace, if you absolutely MUST go back and keep resurrecting them, then better to have the old heroes pass the torch to successors than to watch a bunch of new actors trying and failing to be the originals.
As a fan of the original Lethal Weapon, MacGyver and A-Team, would be feeling a lot better about their reboots if they’d done something similar.
@OzarkHillbilly: Ifn’s you’s interested, go to www dot stltoday dot com and click on “At home: Couple loves 1899 Ferguson home after extensive rehab. Can’t do links, on an IPad. (I must be above the kitchen, they’ve been rocking it out since 3 am)
@Politically Lost: My brother graduated from McGeorge 30 years ago. He started in a couple of big ass firms but decided that was no what he wanted to do. He did a good bit of airline litigation until a few years ago when, as he said, planes stopped falling out of the sky. Now he is doing a good deal of work around the music industry.
I tend to love anything John Rodgers writes, and the original Magnum was enjoyable enough. So I’ll give it a gander if it makes it to broadcast. Netflix just released the latest season of Longmire, so that should keep me occupied for a couple of days, and Poldark is back on PBS starting tomorrow. It’s fairly unusual that there’s two series on at a time I want to watch… not much of a tv watcher. Old (1930-40s) movies are my thing.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@rikyrah: I’m waiting for the Patty and Selma Bouvier review of the new MacGyver.
I think I would watch a movie review show hosted by the Bouvier sisters, even though I gave up on the Simpsons years ago. We both got too old.
ETA: I didn’t regularly watch Magnum, but my recollection it was your typical PI show with Hawaiian scenery and didn’t take itself too seriously.
Worth pointing out re Magnum that its politics could swing hard right, along the lines of the right-wing vigilantism of Knight Rider, AirWolf, Hardcastle and McCormick, and other shows of the Reagan era. A subtext of the show involved the ex-military characters quietly resenting that lefty pols had let them lose in Vietnam. At one point Magnum faces down a Soviet spy who sneers that Americans’ belief in the rule of law will let him get away. Magnum shoots him in cold blood, with no consequence. Watching this scene stopped me cold on the show, and I’ve never wanted to go back to it, despite John Hillerman’s terrific character.
@OzarkHillbilly: Here’s the linky. Neat house. Great work!
Thanks for the pointer.
That’s the kind of car I learned to drive on!
@Politically Lost: estate and trust litigation is a major part of my praxtice as well. one side benefit is that i can never see my own family as dysfunctional ever again.
@efgoldman: never seen it but “Dirtiest Job in the World” always sounded kind of interesting.
@OzarkHillbilly: I watched the video at the link Scott added (thanks, Scott!) and the work is beautiful!
I loved Magnum! But I couldn’t be bothered to watch a remake because Tom Selleck WAS the show. He was charming and handsome and the plot lines were sometimes goofy but also included some poignant stories about the Viet Nam war. I enjoyed it a lot.
I always thought the shows of the era weren’t as simple as that – lot of the individualist ethos from the Reagan era, but also lot of suspicion of the authorities, “authorities” being the police, military and intelligence, the parts of the government conservatives worship.
Miami Vice is probably the ur-example: on the one hand it’s your basic show about righteous cops fighting crime by all means necessary, on the other hand it’s one of the most brutally cynical shows about Reagan’s America. Terrorists, gangsters and traffickers are systematically released by their CIA pals who want to use them in the war on communism, Wall Street bankers launder cartel money and laugh that they’ll get away with it because they’re too big to fail, what references are made to Vietnam describe a world of war crimes and CIA corruption, drug dealers and the like are a less than subtle personification of the get-rich-quick values of the era. Not unqualified Reaganism by any means.
@OzarkHillbilly: Nice work! I especially love the stair rail. Shame about that wasted space in the kitchen, though.
@Kylroy: So reality shows are contributing to the networks downward spiral? Awesome.
Well, the folks behind the Emmy winning Archer liked Magnum, PI as evidenced by this trailer
Here’s a side by side comparison
Akron Beacon Journal:
I don’t think newspaper endorsements matter that much but it should be noted that Ohio newspapers are doing more than “not endorsing Trump”. They’re saying he should be disqualified as an option. That’s unprecedented. It’s never happened before.
After 2012 there were two competing Ohio GOP theories on why Romney lost. One was ” we need to appeal to people outside our base” and the other was “we lost because white non college didn’t come out”. Trump’s campaign says that their strategy is to increase vote totals among white non-college.
They’re counting on the 2nd being true- that there are “missing voters”. Newspaper editorial won’t matter to white non college who didn’t vote in 2012 but they MIGHT matter for white college educated- Clinton’s potential voters.
@satby: The video didn’t come up at first for me. I liked Orene’s “Too much art work is just enough.” Made me laugh.
@Chris: You have a point, especially about Miami Vice, but some of the more cartoon-like shows were expressing a sense of frustration against the impeachment of Nixon and the perceived ineffectiveness of Carter – thus the need for super-secret policing groups, or vigilantism to supersede what were perceived as soft laws and soft behavior towards criminals. And I don’t want to underestimate the attitude of “the liberals let us lose in Vietnam” that runs like an underground current through some of these shows. This all seemed like part of the Reagan era agenda and gave me the real creeps at the time. An interesting study of the period would involve an analysis of the breadth of attitudes expressed in a range of its TV shows.
Two weeks ago Time Bandit came chugging past us down the east channel of Lake Washington. Odd, because there’s no good reason for a commercial fishing boat to be there. My guess was somebody had rented it for a party (Paul Allen? One of his neighbors?)
I’ll be back in the same spot, on the same sailboat this morning. My first big boat race of the season, now that temps are starting to make dinghy racing a bit less comfortable. Still just beer can racing, but a good way to kill a Saturday afternoon.
 Relative term. Still only 24′, but 2500lbs as opposed to 14′ and 350lbs.
I served onboard a submarine that was homeported at Pearl Harbor during a part of the Magnum PI run. “Rick” used to show up at a bar we would frequent. He was friendly and seemed like a decent guy. They also filmed one episode at a strip club,”Club Hubba Hubba”. Yes, that was the name. Some of the actual dancers got to appear in the episode, which was nice. There was a guy on our boat that said that “Higgins” tried to pick him up in a bar one night, too.
@squid696: You weren’t on the Greenville were you?
My late landlady was a prolific painter who did seascapes, abstracts, nudes and the like…she had a Selleck Period that worried her friends and family for a bit, but then moved on to other subjects eventually. The heart wants what it wants
Adam L Silverman
@OzarkHillbilly: here you go:
Of course Magnum P.I. Was crap, but so what? It was 80’s U.S. prime-time escapist tosh staring a twinkly eyed Castro ‘tache in short-shorts and his middle-aged English uh… Housemate? Red Ferrari, Hawaiian scenery, obligatory helicopter chase and interchangeable skinny women without functioning gaydars. Oh, and he solved crimes. Can’t see the sequel/remake lasting more than a season but who knows, maybe they’ll have an overarching storyline where Ms Magnum is hired by a mysterious Russian middleman on behalf of “a most important dignitary, really big, the biggest” to recover a suitcase belonging to the recently murdered Director of the Hawaiian State Registary of Births… with sexy results.
I preferred Dan Tanner, though.
@OzarkHillbilly: Almost famous!
@Raven: New York City SSN 696
It was fun and harmless. Higgins was great, it had cute women and fast cars, and Magnum was the original himbo.
Saturday Night ’78 is the link to the Fiasco setup which was on the Tabletop episode with John Rodgers. There is a link to the episode at that site, if you wish to watch!
@squid696: Ah, I had a friend on the Greenville when it hit the Japanese fishing boat.
I happen to be reading a rather old book, Three Blind Mice: How the TV Networks Lost Their Way that was written around this time. The book made it very clear than the networks were almost simultaneously taken over by the new breed of MBA’s who do everything with a spreadsheet. Sure there was fat to cut, but when we you start slashing muscles and tendons, the thing can’t walk any more.
And that’s what happened.
@OzarkHillbilly: Link please, so we can admire your handiwork.
If memory serves, Magnum P.I. was actually a spin-off from The Rockford Files. Selleck appeared as the Magnum character on an episode of Rockford as an insufferably glamorous, James Bond-ish P.I. Someone — a network suit, I guess — decided he had potential and gave him his own show.
@bemused: Netflix has The West Wing. Cheaper than the box set and with other programming to boot.
Alternatively, wait for Amazon’s Black Friday sales and snag it for less then.
@Death Panel Truck:
Magnum P.I. was awesome.
I also loved Leverage, so I can’t wait for this show.
@OzarkHillbilly:Nice mantle. The homeowners have too much clutter in the room for my taste.
@raven: That was long after my time in. I can’t remember who, but somebody I know knew the captain of that boat when it happened. My boat was in overhaul in the shipyard for almost two years after I got there, so it was practically shore duty Waikiki for us. My experience with the NIS (now NCIS) was nothing like the TV shows. They were investigating a guy (enlisted) on my boat that had transferred to another boat and was assisting the Navigator when that boat ran aground. They were looking for dirt to blame the enlisted guy for the boat running aground. So, they sent the NIS to our boat to look for dirt on the guy. They interviewed me and a few other guys. I don’t think they found what they were looking for.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@WereBear: I remember seeing an interview with Tony Randall, he said that The Odd Couple never had good ratings, and wouldn’t have made it to a second season but one network exec thought it was a quality show. I think there’s a similar story about Paley’s wife, he kept her favorite show, I forget which, on the air, and I think Gunsmoke ran forever for a similar reason. Cheers, Seinfeld, All in the Family, probably a dozen other classics survived because of suits sticking up for them.
At MSNBC, Chris Hayes is on the air because that same goon who picked his buddy Matt Lauer for that godawful ‘forum’ on email, he think Hayes is a prestige show. In a similar vein, it was Tim Russet of all people who protected Olbermann from skittish executives, keeping him on the air long enough to self destruct.
I have caught glimpses of Magnum PI while channel surfing, never seen it and don’t want to see a remake, reboot, prequel, sequel.
@The Thin Black Duke:
Tom Selleck redeemed himself somewhat with the Jesse Stone movies. He may have de-redeemed himself with Blue Bloods, however. (I haven’t watched that.)
We have a cute little thrift store run by little old ladies that benefits a hospice, where I live. The clothes tend to be a bit grandma but they have the best selection of costume jewelry. Yesterday I got a beautiful hinged enamel bamboo bracelet for $4. Its bright yellow and will go with a white and yellow blouse that I also picked up recently. Score!
As private eye series go, it wasn’t bad. I preferred Remington Sfeele and Moonlighting and Vega$ but magnum had Hawaii. The problem with the action mystery shows of the time was the need to write in scenes that made use of the hot vehicles whether they were needed or not. In the case of Magnum, it was the helicopter. Somehow, the writers needed to write a reason for JT to fly somewhere in the helicopter. I guess that’s the problem of having only two buddies, one being a copter pilot. They needed another friend with a fast boat.
@Adam L Silverman: Help Adam Wan Kenobi, I am in moderation, you are my only hope.
Tom Selleck’s real co-star on Magnum P.I. was that bloody red car, and it never got any good lines.
Higgins made the show.
Magnum had a daughter?
Where’s Randinho this week?
It’s amazing how well The Rockford Files holds up. I’ll occasionally watch something late at night on MeTV, and it is miles ahead of its contemporaries: Kojak, Banacek, McCloud, McMillan and Wife, even Columbo.
Let me correct myself: watching a test pattern would be miles ahead of McCloud. Jeez, that was bad.
The one I would like to see them show again is Harry O with David Janssen and Anthony Zerbe. Would love to see how that holds up. Might’ve been too quirky.
@JPL: Heh. Well, I am the “unnamed caver”. Back in the day, on more than one occasion I found my ugly mug (fortunately it was kinda small) on the cover (and the inner spread) of the NSS News (looking very macho/explorery) but my name was never printed there, even when every other person was identified. I found it funny, nay hilarious. After this happened several times a “buddy” of mine decided to right this wrong and tried to ‘out me’ while using his favorite nomme de guerre. I was forced to respond and absolutely destroyed him and his ndg.
There was a book put out by the NSS a few years back on cave photography written by some of the more famous cave photographers in the world, among them a man/wife team I had spent a little bit of time underground with. Word got to me that one of their pics featuring me was going to be centerpiece of theirs and my name was going to be on it and there was nothing I could do about it. Of course, I could not let that lie. I called Anne and begged, cajoled, bribed, threatened, and anything else I could think of until she finally relented and they removed my name.
It reached a pinnacle when the STL post disgrace did a series on the best Happy Hour bars in STL. One was on the Venice Cafe, and who should they take a picture of out at the Boat Bar? Yours truly. And of the 4 patrons and 1 bartender, who should not be named? Yours truly. And what was I wearing? An MVOR (caver) t-shirt.
My hard earned anonymity was lost when yet another ‘friend’ submitted a picture of me for an MVOR guidebook and it got printed and distributed before I knew about it. I still haven’t forgiven him for it.
@Peale: The dilemma reminds me of how The Hulk had to Hulk-out exactly twice per show.
@OzarkHillbilly: CIA should recruit you, you are the Invisible Man, like Smiley.
@Peale: Crime-solving in a boat has its own plot limits.
I thought I had a lot of “stuff” but my house looks positively stripped down compared to that.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: So many great shows had to build their audience. It takes a while for the writers and actors to figure out what works best, how to manage it, what the pace should be; and this goes triple when trying something new.
One of the reasons I gave up watching new network shows was that they would get canceled just as I was getting fond of it. Or moving it all over the schedule, so that only people with DVRs could find it again. Now, I’ll try a series when it has some episodes under its belt and I have a chance at actually enjoying it instead of feeling like a kid whose ice cream cone was just stolen.
Seinfeld was the worst-scored pilot in the history of ever, but someone at the network gave it a chance anyway. The rest was history.
Well, Lou Ferrigno needed the work. He wasn’t a big star crossover from bodybuilding like Arnold. And to be fair to him, he wasn’t the worst actor I’ve ever seen — rather better than Arnold, in fact, as I recall.
@WereBear: often times Bruce Banner needs to get angry in situations that are just annoying
@WereBear: Seinfeld was pretty terrible in the beginning, same thing with Strar Trek: TNG, extremely cringe inducing for the first few episodes, took until the third season to really hit their stride.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@WereBear: why couldn’t Samantha just snap a memory erasing spell at Larry and Mrs Kravitz when they saw Aunt Clara conjure up a brontosaurus in the living room? And of course, what the hell she was doing with that boring dweeb?
@schrodinger’s cat: Smiley rules. Speaking of remakes, I do hope they go ahead with the Gary Oldman Smiley’s People, even if he’ll always be second to Alec Guiness. Netflix dropped that version, my DVDs are scratched, and last time I looked on Amazon, replacements were really expensive
@ThresherK: or in Rosemary and Thyme: we need a garden. Someone please give them a reason to be weeding near a crime scene this week.
Hey, now, speak for yourself. My eight-year-old self loved that show. Pretty much the only one of those “weekly night mystery shows” that I watched. Of course, that was mostly because my eight-year-old self thought Dennis Weaver was hot. God knows what I’d think about it now. I notice that “Columbo” is the only one of that series that made it to the DVD collection in my local library. I’ll have to watch that one, finally. And yeah…”Rockford Files” was cool. My dad and my older brother both really liked that one, so we ended up watching it a lot.
I don’t like how they have butchered latest versions of both Poirot and Marple by trying to spice them up and in turn ruin the perfectly good original.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: I got it from my local library. I enjoyed Smiley’s people even better than Tinker,tailor.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: For me it was: wait, I could wiggle my nose and clean the whole house? And somehow this is wrong? Screw that!
People who are isolated and depressed, like Banner was, get angry more easily than thers.
@Miss Bianca: I loved Columbo then and I love it now. And I am a Peter Falk fan.
@OzarkHillbilly: That’s some amazing work. I love the way the fireplace mantel wanders off the fireplace and up onto the wall. And the stone/glass ornamentation on the staircase risers.
I’ve known other people who’ve turned their homes into quasi-art museums. Most notably a fellow who collects Edwardiana, Victoriana, and grotesqueries. He has amazing, mind-blowingly beautiful stuff – but So. Much.Muchness!! It’s sensory overload just walking through. I admire the hell out of those people, but it’s sooo easy to tip over from “collector” to “hoarder.”
@Amir Khalid: Yes, I found Lou to be pretty good, considering he was mute in the show. As someone with hearing issues, his speech was not TV standard of the time. Though I figured, why not? The Hulk is not exactly eloquent, is he?
Iowa Old Lady
Mr IOL still gets Rolling Stone, and I’m reading Matt Taibbi’s article “How Trump Lost His Mojo.” I know we’re sometimes annoyed at Taibbi here but the man is hilarious with words.
@K488: Tom Selleck himself was/is a pretty hard-right-wing guy, isn’t he? (Wikipedia says he identifies himself as a libertarian-leaning independent with a particular fondness for the NRA, so yeah.)
I was kind of surprised to hear that John Rogers was working on a Magnum sequel just because of the politics.
@Iowa Old Lady: I assume the article was written a few weeks ago? I thought the current line was that Trump is unbeatable because worst Hillary ever etc. and so forth.
@WereBear: It took The In-Laws to make me fall in love with Peter Falk. And then, of course, his cameo as himself in Himmel Uber Berlin was one more reason to love that movie.
Damn it, I *am* going to have to watch “Columbo” now. I can’t believe I haven’t done it yet!
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@Iowa Old Lady: I like him and I’ll look for that article, but like Pierce, of whom I am a huge fan, Taibbi sometimes starts at eight, turns it up to eleven before he hits his first comma, and never eases off. IMHO, YMMV, etc, etc.
@Matt McIrvin: apparently that is Cenk Ugyur’s latest on-going tantrum
@Iowa Old Lady: Thank you, very enjoyable!
Good catch! I vaguely remember that now.
. . . Huh, just looked it up. He was “Lance White” in the Rockford two-parter, but the persona was as you said.
Also interesting to see that Magnum did a one-episode crossover on Simon & Simon. I remember that series as being a little better than the others, but I wouldn’t bet on my memory.
@Peale: Now, that show is set in England, where there are gardens about everywhere.
I’m also one of those males who doesn’t need any prompting to watch Felicity Kendal in anything.
The ’60s show “Bewitched” was more or less based on the 1942 René Clair film “I Married A Witch”.
I remember seeing it some years back on late night TV. Out of curiosity I just checked wikipedia, and apparently Dalton Trumbo contributed to the script (uncredited). It’s a humorous film and I recommend it to any fans here of old Hollywood.
From John Roger’s twitter feed, it sounded like the studio asked for pitches based on older properties owned by the studio. Someone recalled Magnum had a daughter, Eva Longoria was interested, and it went from there. Reading this thread makes me realize that borrowing the name of an older series is a double-edged sword at best. My memories of Magnum were that it wasn’t worth watching, but if was OK to watch if that was what somebody else picked. One of those shows you watched while babysitting.
I’d like to add a subtweet too hot for my twitter feed:
Just because you are running a business that you see as contributing to the community and is related to creativity and the arts, doesn’t make every issue you are involved in an ethical one.
Just because you don’t have $100,000, doesn’t mean you don’t owe someone $100,000. These are two entirely separate issues.
Just because somebody supports the arts and small businesses, doesn’t mean that you don’t owe them $100,000 because you are an artist running a small business.
I have no idea who is correct in the question of is the $100,000 owed or not, but your framing of the issue as “ethical” doesn’t help gain my sympathy.
ETA : I don’t think the Magnum sequel is a sequel in any way other than to get an Eva Longoria/John Rogers show booked at the network.
If only Randinho were here to put up a football thread. Then i could rejoice that Liverpool had restored their three-goal cushion over Hull City. Sigh.
I think the big money is now from DVD sales and streaming rather than from broadcast syndication, but that’s approach has generally be true only of scripted shows. The rest of TV- including reality/contest shows but also talk, news, daytime soaps, etc.- has always been about being cheap enough to produce to make a profit on the original broadcast.
@Miss Bianca: For me, there are many stand-out episodes, either because the murder plot was really interesting or I loved the guest stars (Nimoy! Jack Cassidy! The Shat! Fisher Stevens!). Falk is always excellent, though it was a bit odd to see him as a police detective after seeing him as a violent heavy in gangster movies.
The “shtick” – the awkward bumbling and “Oh, I forgot to ask/One last question….” did get a little old after a while. But I still like the show very much!
The late 80s was a golden period for Indian TV shows, especially on Doordarshan (Equivalent of India’s PBS).
There was a short TV series on the Partition called “Tamas” (Darkness) which is recently saw. That was awesome, its based on the novel of the same name, written by a Bhisham Sahani who actually lived through those events. A must see in our current times.
@schrodinger’s cat: I’m just a fairly ordinary looking guy, which by the way is exactly what the CIA recruits for their undercover people. Never the big, overly muscled guys/super lithe women, so drop dead gorgeous the ladies/guys can’t take their eyes off of beautiful people you see cast in the movies, but people you wouldn’t look at twice because they’re just so… Ordinary.
Eta: speaking of smiley, he was either MI5 or MI6 (can never remember which is which) so he was a Brit. I like Smiley.
It may be Trump fatigue, but George Bush Jr just spoke at the opening of the new African American Museum in DC and it was the first time I’ve ever heard him speak intelligently. That includes the 9/11 empty rhetoric.
@OzarkHillbilly: Perfect for the CIA!
@bystander: It was a good speech, for what it was.
@Matt McIrvin: Paul Haggis created both Due South for the Canadian treasure Paul Gross (I’m in that cult) and Walker, Texas Range for Chuch Norris. Sometimes showbiz makes strange political bedfellows.
@Steeplejack (phone): The only things I remember on Simon and Simon are that they lived on a boat, and one neat throwaway gag refering to The Manchurian Candidate when the characters were subject to forced peppy cheerfulness while auditioning for a TV game show to solve a scandal. The Manchurian Candidate, in the 1980s, wasn’t my idea of a “mainstream” reference, but fairly upper-middle-class-brow.
@germy: It was just on TCM last week.
@germy: I’ve actually seen I Married A Witch – I remember thinking that witch-burning was an interesting…shall we say…premise for a light-hearted little screwball comedy.
I wouldn’t be too worried about Magnum, the reboot, being too conservative with the lead writer they tapped. The show was fluff, mostly, but enjoyable fluff, and it’s a good mesh with his style.
I’m more worried this means The Librarians is dead.
EDIT: Good news, there’s a S3 premiere date.
If I were hiring spies, I too would pick people that no one would look at twice. Those are the people more likely to get away with shit.
@Miss Bianca: I was admittedly potty about Wings of Desire for a solid while (the library!) but it could also be confusing as I was also firmly fond of Law of Desire and conversations could get very confusing.
@bystander: Bush clearly has no interest in public life anymore, so it is interesting to see what public functions he chooses to attend and what he does when there.
True. I’m still smarting from Battle Creek being canceled last year. Also The Good Guys a few years back. Good one-season shows that didn’t get a chance to find their footing.
Heck, I even like that Rainn Wilson cop show Backstrom.
@What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us?:
Probably? My opinion may be shaded by the sententious older Tom Selleck, but he was always more than a few steps down from the great James Garner in Rockford Files.
If memory serves (too lazy to look it up), The Snoop Sisters was in that rotation as well, for a time. Helen Hayes and Mildred Natwick as septuagenarian crime solvers.
The opening sequence where the man dressed in historical garb sells stuff from his tray as if it’s a baseball game reminded me of a Monty Python sketch.
The Thin Black Duke
@Steeplejack (phone): Oh, don’t get me wrong, I don’t think Selleck is a bad actor. But he would’ve been the wrong fit for Indian Jones. Even as a young man, there was a Grumpy Old Man grittiness in his performances that he brought to the character which worked perfectly. Selleck’s sly but amiable charisma is nowhere close in the neighborhood of cynical because he’s enjoying himself too much.
@scav: I started using the original title to distinguish it from the blasphemously awful remake. (what is it with Nicholas Cage and his propensity to star in awful remakes of wonderful quirky movies?)
@OzarkHillbilly: Sweet man, just as I envisioned your work.
@CaseyL: Red did all the Mosaic art, I just built the stuff her mosaics went on. The mantle was kind of fun, Orene wanted something ‘cloudlike’ and I suggested an anvil cloud probably because it was the easiest cloud like thing I could think of to build. It worked and made them happy so that was good.
The pictures make it look more crowded than it is but it is pretty full, definitely more than I would have, but in John and Orene’s hands, it works. It’s them.
@germy: Oh, man, I’d forgotten that part! You’re right, that was pretty funny.
@Miss Bianca: Oh GSD I didn’t know they’d done that — I may have to adopt your principle (although I’ll miss the long-standing mental pause confirming I’ve got the correct title and haven’t gone all Almodovar.)
@Iowa Old Lady:
Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The TV show was far better than the original movie.
@OzarkHillbilly: What abut the hand rail and balusters?
@OzarkHillbilly: “Just” building the stuff that the mosaic goes on is pretty challenging, I would think: structurally strong enough to support the glass/stone/grout, but not so thick and heavy that it compromises the superstructure around it, or the esthetics of what goes on it.
@Roger Moore: I’ll second that one, altho’ I have to say I have a fondness for the original movie, and I don’t think I would have got into the TV series if I hadn’t liked the movie so much.
The shtick got in the way for me sooner rather than later. But Falk was good, and interesting guest stars, etc.
I will throw in here that ’70s-80s TV cinematography is painfully dreadful.
@OzarkHillbilly: That was a great story. The power of being the unnamed.
Speaking of long ago detective series, anyone else remember Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased)? Shown in U.S. syndication as My Partner, the Ghost.
@raven: I’ve only been able to get away with that kind of stuff on a few side jobs where I am working with artists. John and Orene were great. I do miss them 2.
@OzarkHillbilly: This was a house my buddy designed and built for a wealthy MD. He and his two main carpenters, one Japanese and the other Norwegian, when to Vancouver for the legs. The bight them, dry but the house there and then trucked the logs to Georgia. The stone snake is about 60 yards long.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
I agree. The lighting is so flat and there seems to be an actual… absence… of cinematography. No atmosphere, just aim camera and shoot. I’m not sure if that was a deliberate style or from budget restrictions. Spielberg’s use of framing, composition and dramatic lighting finally put an end to that era, as others rushed to imitate him.
@Amir Khalid: I adored “Simon the Likeable” on Get Smart. That guy could get away with anything!
James E Powell
Ah yes, the American Dolchstoßlegende. It was the subtext of American politics from about 1978 to the end of the first Gulf War. It was still alive and thriving for the 2004 election. I think it’s no longer an active force, but it is firmly embedded in the American narrative.
@patrick II: I always liked when Rockford got beat up, he actually acted like he was in pain, and the pain lasted more than 20 seconds. And that he had a sneaky-quick car. Sensible people who work for a living don’t actually need to drive a Superbird or a Countach or a fake Daytona or …
The (mobile) site is giving me multiple 404 errors after editing comments. Never happened before. Sorry for the dupe.
@germy: Hill Street Blues, IIRC, was a factor in loosening up (on purpose), with more background noise and characters talking over on the audio side. I don’t know if that less-stiltledness occurred on the visual side though.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@James E Powell: I think we heard it well into ’08, and it still comes up with ISIL: “get the politicians out of the way and let the military win this war!” It’ll be around as long as John McCain is around. It underlies Trump’s “Political correctness is killing us”, too
Same holds for many (most?) 70s films. Whether familiar with it or not, can peg a movie as made in that decade immediately by its look.
Ditto scores for 70s films. Nearly interchangeable and almost always tiresome and tepid.
@NotMax: I adored that!
And quite violent for the time. They would actually “put the boot in” and aim for the “wedding tackle.”
@NotMax: You seen “A Decade Under the Influence”?
@raven: Those were alread there, tho I did do some work in that area that doesn’t show in the pics. The kitchen cabs were all my work as well as the coffered ceiling in there (and other stuff- can’t even remember it all). It was a real collaborative process,them putting out their ideas, me shooting them down, my alternatives, them shooting them down, back and forth back and forth until finally we ended up with something that not only would they like but that was actually physically possible to build.
A fun project.
@Kylroy: I don’t know about that. Real Housewives or “wherever” seems to be thriving in syndication.
I found this by looking at my DVR after my sister spent a month at my place.
@efgoldman: I like Forged in Fire.
Alain the site fixer
@Steeplejack (phone): let me know if that continues! I did make some changes to it last week after it updated so use the contact form from Quick Links if this continues!
@OzarkHillbilly: My bride did that with our builder. I kept my mouth shut.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Better late than never…?
Alright, GO DAWGS!!!
Have neither seen nor heard of it but as you recommend, shall look it up.
@NotMax: Great documentary, it was an IFC production. Visions of Light is really good too.
@Alain the site fixer:
What’s weird is that if I hit the back button to go back to the thread, I can see that page come up, but then I still get kicked back to the 404 error page.
@raven: You’ve shown me that before- Beautiful. I had it book marked on one of my old computers. I’ve got a few friends in the hills and hollers that have done similarly with their places. I won’t as our place won’t take to such ‘out there’ work. Still I get to have a little fun here and there.
@germy: Largely budget and technical limitations of the TVs of the time. Remember that TV shows had to be watchable on small black and white tube TVs. That meant flood lit sets and full face close ups. Remember, 13″ B&W TV was a thing.
People don’t realize how much the peak TV era is driven by the new non-linear editing systems, which allow for far more complex editing in very short amounts of time, as well as far cheaper and better cameras, which can shoot in far lower light conditions than previously possible.
@ThresherK: Raging Bull is usually credited as being the pivot point between the flat sets of the “golden” age and modern ultra-detailed sets. Hill Street Blues would have been made just as that film was in release, winning Oscars and influencing everything.
@Miss Bianca: Rogers’ politics are (is?) one of the things that gives me hope about the new series; the other is his often-reiterated love for Rockford Files. I was always sorry Leverage didn’t catch on with more people because the plots were almost entirely based on some sort of eye-popping corporate grift that was absolutely real, but perhaps in the overall context of the show might have seemed exaggerated for effect.
My entire viewing experience with major TV right now is via the New York Public Library (if they don’t have the season DVD, I don’t see the show), so I’m going to have to wait at least a calendar year for this reboot. But when the season DVD finally sails into the stacks, I’ll be there. (And probably, as I did with Leverage, end up buying the season DVDs myself. Rogers is an amazing guy, really, and the episode commentary is as funny as the shows were/are.)
Veronica Lake is impossibly gorgeous in that one.
They thought they were being contemporary by dropping orchestral scores in favor of keyboard soundtrack music, which actually sounds more dated today than orchestras. Also, ’80s films scored with ’80s reverby, over-produced rock songs simply sound ridiculously dated today.
Open to most anything as am in a happy place after visiting Costco yesterday and discovering they have finally restocked the Kirkland brand Côtes du Rh&244;ne Villages. Only seems to show up when they put out Christmas stock (last time saw it there was December). Best tasting affordable wine ($6.99) have come across in a long, long, long time.
Guy I know who works in the wine department there suggested stocking up as it “flies out here fast whenever we get it.”
I am aware but we live rural, basically in internet service boonie land as far as good or many choices of a provider. We do have wifi but recently were barely able to use our landline or cell phones for over 3 weeks from home and went through a nightmare time of trying to talk to ATT tech when the calls get dropped or they can’t hear you. My spouse had to find a spot far from the house in the woods to be able to communicate with techs. This went on for days and days. ATT sent a microcell tower but that didn’t help much. The problem was our internet was too slow (different provider) and company came out and put in a new system that is faster but still not where we want to be to be able to stream reliably to use Netflix, etc.
People who live in cities or areas with very fast internet and choices have no idea what can be like in outstate areas or even suburbs. Our provider ended up installing the newer system receiver over 50 feet up a Norway pine tree to get signal from nearby small town water tower or local farmer’s silo, I forget which now. One of the guys just scrambled up that tree until you couldn’t even see him anymore, no fear at all. It really is kind of hilarious but I wouldn’t have been laughing if it hadn’t worked. It’s not so easy to just change to another provider, even a much bigger company. They may not be able to cover the area one is in or you may have to wait until one of their customers drop out.
I envy Finland which made it a national right for all their people to have access to internet.
Corrected. No edit option.
Open to most anything as am in a happy place after visiting Costco yesterday and discovering they have finally restocked the Kirkland brand Côtes du Rhône Villages. Only seems to show up when they put out Christmas stock (last time saw it there was December). Best tasting affordable wine ($6.99) have come across in a long, long, long time.
Guy I know who works in the wine department there suggested stocking up as it “flies out here fast whenever we get it.”
@germy: Yeah, but at least everything wasn’t teal and orange back then…
Gonna be stuck here for another day of antibiotic IVs. Sucks to be me.
@The Thin Black Duke:
Great point. I see your point, and think that Harrison Ford turned out to be the perfect Jones, but I think that Selleck might have brought something to the role.
I think that Selleck was very good in Quigley Down Under, and was also able to bring a shade of cynicism to his character in the film.
ETA. I’m not that interested in seeing a Magnum Jr of either gender. Nor a Ms Rockford. I would rather see a new character. At a stretch, the person might have been inspired by Magnum.
@Another Scott: You’re right! I’ve had quite enough of the teal and orange.
And congratulations on the new name. I see you grew weary of typing the apostrophe.
The producers should have watched the movie , “The Big Bus.”
The Thin Black Duke
@germy: Case in point, The Friends of Eddie Coyle. In spite of it’s many virtues (acting, script, direction), it’s not a great movie because the soundtrack is so godawful it’s actually distracting. I wanted to break the keyboard player’s fingers in the middle of the movie.
and 2016 continues…
Be of stout heart. Friend here live way out in the boonies, in the middle of the rain forest, and best he can get (on a good day) is somewhere around 2 mbps download speed. He’s bitched and moaned to me that often drops down to around 0.6.
@Miss Bianca: I’ll just drop this in here, the opening credits and first few minutes of Peter Falk’s series before Columbo: The Trials of O’Brien, shot in NYC, about a shady NY lawyer. There are probably 2 or 3 episodes preserved, the rest are gone, but he was hilarious in it. (If anybody knows where other episodes are, please post!!) Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hi1IkNyRpKs (I may have too many https in there, but it’s on youTube.)
You still in the hospital? Sorry to hear that. Or are you just hospital-adjacent to go in for appointments?
Terry Jones (of Monty Python) has been diagnosed with dementia and is unable to give any more interviews.
Has Rogers just given up on Kung Fu Monkey?
@OzarkHillbilly: Get well soon, Unknown Caver.
@John Cole: My mother loved it, watched it all the time. She claims it was for the Hawaiian scenery. I suspect she liked the other scenery (in the Detroit ball cap), too.
Ahhh, that was one of my favorites.
One show that I wished had made it past its first season was The Immortal. From the shows opening narration “Ben Richards is immune to every known disease, including old age. Periodic transfusions of his blood can give other men a second, a third lifetime, perhaps more.” So it was basically a Fugiitive-like chase show, but it had its moments.
@WereBear: Lou Ferrigno actually does voice work these days–aside from making Hulk noises in some movies, he was the voice of Billy the Hero on Adventure Time.
He’s a wingnut, I think, unfortunately.
@Davebo: Kung Fu Monkey has had no new posts since january 2015. And most of the more recent ones were about Rogers’s television series.
Speaking of KFM, let us not forget the other major John Rogers contribution to political discourse in America:
Club Hubba Hubba was still there last time went to Oahu, but that was back in the early 1990s.
Quite a few “clubs” of that ilk, all owned by the same people.
Trivia: During WW2, brothels on Oahu attempted to raise their rates but were forced to revert to old charges (5 bucks, 30 minutes) by the military authorities.
@Steeplejack (phone): Nope, I am in the hospital with a 6 foot leash (confined to bed). I can’t move without getting tangled up in something, causing something to beep madly, pulling something out of what it’s plugged into, or knocking something off of something somewhere.
One.more.day. Or so they say.
@Matt McIrvin: Appears to be. He’s on Rolling Stone’s “19 of Donald Trump’s Weirdest Celebrity Endorsements” list. Of the other 18, one is dead, one indicted, and one on trial for war crimes.
@OzarkHillbilly: Indeed he was, it was MI 5, I think. I like Smiley too. You can be the American version of Smiley!
Do you see the Americans?
@Another Scott: I was the “unnamed caver”, not the “unknown caver”, hence I always got the question, “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” ;-)
I think that James Garner, Tom Selleck and Robert Urich are all very likable TV actors. And as another poster here aptly noted, they do amiable better than they do gruff or gritty.
Interestingly enough, all three actors were pretty good as private detectives. They gave off vibes that they were someone you could bring your problem to.
They were also quite good in TV Westerns.
BTW, a supremely crappy Garner obituary, maybe in the NY Times, wrongly, stupidly, annoyingly, labeled Garner as a typical macho male Western hero for his early tv work in Maverick. The writer was too young to know his work, too lazy to fact check, and figured that most readers would not know or care.
Maverick preferred to avoid trouble, often pretended to be an outright coward, and because he was a gambler was often pushed around by authority figures. And Maverick was often outsmarted by the female guest star.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
Ana Marie Cox goes to a Ken Starr press conference at Baylor
I will simply because there’s no other choice, at least until more fiber optic cable is laid, more cell towers, etc.
We are not alone with this experience. We are finding others in our area having the exact same issue, can no longer make phone calls inside home and all the rest. We keep telling them to call ATT advanced tech. My spouse has the number memorized. ATT would tell us that, gee, they haven’t gotten any other complaints from the area. Ha. Turns out ATT is getting rid of 2G and I did have a message on cell that they were upgrading and area would have better service. It was shortly after that our phones went fubar.
We are better off than others who can’t even get the speed we have like your friend. I suppose that’s some comfort.
@schrodinger’s cat: Not yet. Looking forward to it. Have you ever read Le Carre or have you just watched him? That is one sick and twisted man. Has to be to conjure up some of the individuals he people’s his books with. To get inside their minds, as he does, it always unsettles me a little, gives my stomach half a turn.
@OzarkHillbilly: I have read some of his stuff but not all. The DVD for Smiley’s People has a long interview with the man himself. Pretty cool!
You should check out his recent profile or memoirs review at the Guardian website. He definitely seems bent, if not twisted.
ETA. Hope you are doing better soon.
Magnum PI isn’t better than the A team. That’s just a stupid thought. It is better than most f the rest of the 80s pap. Airwolf and knight rider and the such.
@Keith P.: For one thing, they would have had to call it McChickver.
I’ll just walk away now.
Also would it kill you people to use an actual comment system that notifies people when they get responded to? Having any kind of actual conversation on the current set up is basically a crap shoot.
@OzarkHillbilly: D’oh! :-)
@EBT: That’s part of the charm. You spend 2 hours here trying to figure out if someone is replying to something you said, and write something back with the hope that they’ll see it and reply before you have to leave.
It’s like exchanging telegrams with people who are being shipped all over the world.
What could possibly be better? ;-)
Co-sign about watching Amazon sales. That is how I got my West Wing box set for little to nothing.
@Shell: Oh, Lord! I saw that in a theater, first run! Can’t believe someone else ever saw it.
@schrodinger’s cat: I have not either. The one that hooked me was The Perfect Spy. It is a fair sized book and it all happens in a single studio apartment, over 3 days. It is all disjointed memories and conversations the subject has with himself. Nothing and I mean absolutely nothing happens, ever, and yet I got so drawn into this sick and twisted world that was so convoluted and confusing, trying to figure out how this person came to be.
Psychological thrillers have never been a thing for me, but this one was just so real, that as much as it repelled me, I could not pu it down.
Well, now I know why I am being held here for just a little case of pneumonia: They’re bringing the big guns to bear on this one. The nurse just told me I’ve been getting [email protected]!n. I guess aspiration pneumonia is worse than the regular kind, not only is it fast, it must be hard to get rid of too.
@OzarkHillbilly: Good luck, man!
@Another Scott: I could pretty much predict how bad that car was when you said Rambler.
Read part way through and noticed a theme. Reboots. Mostly of old crap that was watched because most of the other stuff was worse. So now the pain continues. I ride the local light rail every day now and the sides of the trains are vinyl infested ads for TV show reboots. Glad I got rid of cable in 05, I have lost nothing while gaining my sanity back, such as it is.
So my question is, How many original shows have there been in the last 10 yrs? A new idea, something fresh, even if it is dreck in the end, something where new was at least attempted.
Seconded. Good [email protected]OzarkHillbilly:
Well, hang tough!
@Steeplejack (tablet): I got nothing else to do, just hanging around. ;-(
Open thread connected to nothing: NYT Just officially endorsed Clinton.
I am assuming tomorrow’s NYT front page will include a headline story of how this questionable endorsement from an old adversary raises shadows over her campaign concerning Quid Pro Quo questions.
Dirty jobs was good overall. Sometimes a bit much but at least he got dirty, doing stuff that lots of people do every day to keep things rolling.
Another good one was Worlds Toughest Fixes. Could be a bit much but he went to some out of the way places and actually stayed out of the way while being involved in the work.
Even in many of the other shows, I would argue the subtext is often absent. Watching the A-Team twenty years after itaired, one of the things that surprised me the most is that the show has plenty of opportunity to take shots at the hippies, the media, and the liberals, who Wouldn’t Let Us Win… and I don’t remember it ever taking them. Instead, it takes a lot of shots at the U.S. Army, both implicitly (they were betrayed by corrupt U.S. Army superiors and are regularly pursued by Army cops) and explicitly (Hannibal’s feud with Decker goes back to when he punched his lights out in Vietnam for, basically, being a war criminal).
The show had other problems (sexist as hell), but it really did not ever feel like a Nixonite/Reaganite Vietnam revanchist was writing the show.
Other shows did, especially Magnum and Airwolf, which is expected as they’re Bellisario shows. But even then, I’d argue that neither show was as unequivocally pro-military as his later shows like JAG and NCIS.
You can always dismiss anything as “not really original” (enough), but we’re pretty much in a golden age of good TV: Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, Sherlock, Foyle’s War, Justified—that’s off the top of my head.
Yes, there’s still a lot of crap out there, but 90% of everything is crap.
@Ruckus: That was the other one I’d heard of from folks. They both sounded interesting and at least somewhat informative. I was certain there was some bullshit hyping of it all tho.
True, life can be rather boring but I meant that we are seeing remakes of crap or almost crap TV shows from decades ago. Isn’t there someone who’d take a chance on something different or are all studio execs full on MBAs now?
And in your choices, Mad Men didn’t blow wind up my skirt in the least, GoT has no interest because it’s a period piece, although people I know loved it. I’m starting to see a pattern here, maybe it’s ME that’s the problem. I like comedies, but one’s with some style, not just a headliner who I’m supposed to gush over or whose acting is comprised of mugging for the camera.
It’s TV, bullshit is the lube that keeps the world turning. But the info was realistic, Rowe in the SF sewers being run over by rats was good TV. The set ups worked, he got right into the work every show, be it inseminating cows or whatever. If you want to watch the whole series, don’t be squeamish.
I am not sure that it will have legs, but I found the new NBC comedy, The Good Place, to be surprisingly charming and amusing. And I’m not a big tv comedy guy.
Jack the Cold Warrior
I too, morn for the loss of BattleCreek and Backstrom…
It’s harder to get people to agree on comedies, but there are good ensemble comedies out there: Parks and Rec, Modern Family (though coasting a bit the last couple of seasons), etc. A newer one I like is Black-ish. Also Fresh Off the Boat.
@Ruckus: squeamish is one thing I’m not.
@Chris: Don’t disagree with you – I was thinking of a particular set of shows that were notable in their handling of these issues; didn’t mean to suggest all shows of the period had that quality. I just remember noticing this as it happened at the time.
Jack the Cold Warrior
Original TV shows?
Most original: The Americans. Opens in 81. Nice late 30 something couple with 2 All American teenagers. Run a successful travel agency in the DC area. Dad getting close to midlife crisis, just bought a snazzy Camaro. The Twist: they are KGB agents, infiltrated into the US in the early 60’s. Kids have no idea what Mom & Dads real job is. 1st episode, greeting the new neighbor that moves in across the street, finds he is FBI counterintelligence.
Like Cole, I served in the Army in Germany and saw the East German Border and how horrible communism was, but damn, the writing and acting is so good on the show, you often are rooting for these bad guys. It’s the first US show I’ve seen that brings to a personal level how the bloody Great Patriotic War’s immense losses affected the Soviets outlook on the World, and the West scares the hell out of them.
@Amir Khalid: Selleck did appear on Rockford; but, his character was Lance White. A totally handsome hunk who was not a very good P.I., but, who seemed to get all the credit for the work that Rockford did. Those episodes of the Rockford Files were my favorite. I enjoyed Magnum very much because Selleck’s character was such a happy guy, who let little get him down. We needed that then. Now, Selleck never smiles on Blue Bloods; and, the constant downer of that show gets me down. I prefer to watch TV shows that leave me laughing or feeling good at a minimum. I also hate reality shows. First, they aren’t real. And, second, someone is always yelling at someone else or everyone is stabbing everyone else in the back. The reality shows seem to make people think that such rude and bad behavior is acceptable. Magnum was a fun show; and, what is wrong with having fun watching TV. The reboot will probably fail because TV is a very age-related medium. My age is no longer important to the TV producers; but, most of the commenters here seem to be in the right demographic to have TV programs fashioned for them, which is why the reboot probably will fail.
@Ruckus: Original? I’m going to mention “Rectify,” which in its own unhurried, quiet way is a stupendous piece of work. Not everyone’s cup of tea, perhaps, follows a recently released convict as he navigates re-entry after (?guessing) 20 years in the pen (didn’t commit the crime, although half the town thinks he did and the other half is indifferent). Haven’t seen Season 2 yet (NYPL needs a little prodding from me, I guess) but worth checking out. Aden Young (lead) is outstanding, supporting cast is superb, writing is quietly epic. (says ME, anyway.)
Somehow I never got the impression that you were squeamish. Just a warning to those that might be. I’m the same way, no one in the navy was able to gross me out. Many tried, none succeeded. Not sure I’m actually proud of that, but it is what it is.
I have talked to a couple of guys, one about 8 months ago and one a couple of weeks ago, who have spend a lot of time in prison. The first I met at the VA, he wasn’t a vet but said he had spent 30 yrs in Attica. The second was on the bus and he was very well informed, talking to friends, loudly enough that one couldn’t help listening. He would be a well received commenter here on BJ. Told him he should run for office, I’d vote for him. That’s when he told me he’d spent 18 yrs in for a crime he didn’t commit. Had a nice chat, nice fellow. You began to wonder if either of them should have done time or if they are bullshitting you. I didn’t pry but I’d bet given the odds of 2 black men spending time in prison, probably one of them didn’t do the crime and the other one should have gotten maybe 5 yrs. Now the man with 30 yrs in didn’t claim he didn’t do it and I think that says something. Not sure what. Got to say neither one of them scarred me all that much, far less than a few of my fellow public transit riders do.
@Dan: Exactly. At the time, it was great fun. Don’t think I’d be tempted by a reboot though. Then again, contempt before investigation ain’t a good look on most of us. But, yeah, it was fun and we got to see the beauty of Hawaii.
@Chris: Elite unit US soldiers falsely accused of war crimes (“…a crime they did NOT commit…”) in Vietnam. By definition that is, if not revanchism, at least revisionism.
JR in WV
I visited a friend up in Ohio a while back, and met her neighbor (also her ex-brother-in-law) who had built a really interesting brick house. Mostly square and plumb, but optionally so. He also used wavy/curved/off plumb brick lines, including a walkway with an alligator in and out of the ground along the walk.
It was all hand laid, without using lines so much. Amazing. Wish I could do that.
@James E Powell:
I think of it as the modern version of the Lost Cause. A revisionist, whitewashing narrative of a recent war invented so that angry white right-wingers could feel better about themselves, that grew stronger as memories of the war faded and that by the end of the century had become the accepted narrative of that war.
(In both cases, the left wing reformists of the era were made into the villains of the narrative: abolitionists and postwar Radical Republicans the first time around, the hippies and other antiwar protesters the second time around).
It may not be “active” in the sense that people care much about it anymore, but by the same token I don’t think it gets questioned much anymore.
Where else, just out of curiosity? I definitely see it on Bellisario’s work, but less elsewhere.
Yeah, because of that narrative, that’s what I expected from the show. It just never actually ended up played out that way onscreen. The institution that gets by far the most crap on that show is the Army, and it’s done in a way that’s more reminiscent of M*A*S*H than anything stabinthebacky.
It’s mostly formulaic crap, but there are nuggets of true drama in there every once in a while.
Watch “Did You See the Sun Rise?” episode. It’s actually pretty good.