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  'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!' DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that. 2.

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Buskalilly
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PostSubject: Re: 'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!' DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that. 2.    'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!'  DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that.  2. - Page 12 EmptyTue 16 Feb 2021 - 11:47

Ooh, that sounds like just the right mix for me, I might check it out.

I'm too much of a history nerd to want pure fiction, but I'm not tedious enough to demand dry accuracy.
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gjones
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PostSubject: Re: 'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!' DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that. 2.    'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!'  DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that.  2. - Page 12 EmptyMon 22 Mar 2021 - 14:08

Line of Duty is back. Anyone on here a fan?

I've also been watching Your Honor, the latest Bryan Cranston series. An excellent if ridiculous thriller that would have been better as a film. The first episode is incredibly shot, really impressed.
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Buskalilly
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The only live-action TV I've been watching was that I finished The Next Generation finally.
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gjones
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PostSubject: Re: 'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!' DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that. 2.    'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!'  DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that.  2. - Page 12 EmptyMon 29 Mar 2021 - 11:42

Line of Duty is so good. Y'all sleeping.

Also started The Flight Attendant - very glossy and glamorously shot murder mystery with Kaley Cuoco. Liking it so far.
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masofdas
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PostSubject: Re: 'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!' DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that. 2.    'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!'  DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that.  2. - Page 12 EmptyMon 29 Mar 2021 - 14:55

Unless it's MCU, I don't watch live action TV either really, well I might B99 Season 7.
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gjones
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PostSubject: Re: 'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!' DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that. 2.    'Whatchu Watching About, Willis?!'  DIGRESSION ALERT: Please, for the love of all that is, don't call it that.  2. - Page 12 EmptyMon 5 Apr 2021 - 13:24

@masofdas wrote:
Unless it's MCU, I don't watch live action TV either really, well I might B99 Season 7.

I think I'm the only gamer that has zero interest in Marvel. You may ban me accordingly.

After ignoring it for years, I've finally started Still Game. Fuck me, it's funny. A nice balance of old-school insult comedy and sarcasm, which I'm all for.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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@gjones wrote:
I think I'm the only gamer that has zero interest in Marvel. You may ban me accordingly.

After ignoring it for years, I've finally started Still Game. Fuck me, it's funny. A nice balance of old-school insult comedy and sarcasm, which I'm all for.

You're definitely not - I can't be arsed with any of that comic book mince.



As for Still Game, everything you typed is true. Adding to that though it's many poignant, sweet and heartfelt moments, especially in it's first 2002-2007 run. I'm jealous of you really. I'd love to re-experience Still Game again for the first time, it's easily my favourite TV programme of this millennium. 

I'm jealous of you
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Balladeer
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I'd say my interest in Marvel is low compared to most. I've been to see the films because they were big fun events, but outside the odd pang re. Wandavision I've had no interest in 'the expanded universe'.
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masofdas
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It's only the newshows on Disney+ really, did watch some of Netflix ones but not Agents for instance.
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Balladeer
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I tried Agents, but the first episode was so bad it put me off the rest of them. I hear it's meant to get better later on.
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Muss
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Agents of Shield; rashers of good with sprinkles of shit. If you're not interested in Marvel save yourself a lot of bother.
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The_Jaster
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Yeh, I thought it was alright but I fell off from watching it shortly after the Inhuman stuff.
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Muss
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That's right around where I stopped watching it as well. I think I was particularly disappointed in some of the arbitrary character twists and arcs which felt really hamfisted. It was like I didn't really know these characters anymore and didn't care to get to know them any further.
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@The Cappuccino Kid wrote:


As for Still Game, everything you typed is true. Adding to that though it's many poignant, sweet and heartfelt moments, especially in it's first 2002-2007 run. I'm jealous of you really. I'd love to re-experience Still Game again for the first time, it's easily my favourite TV programme of this millennium. 

I'm jealous of you

I've rattled through five seasons of this and I can't get enough of it. It's my customary 10.30pm slot - stick an episode or two on and lose myself in this community of pensioners coping with loneliness, ill-health, technology and friendship; all while ripping the pish out of each other. Initially I actually struggled with some of the language, much like I did with Rab C Nesbitt. I'm a shandy-drinking Kent lad so I put it on subtitles for a bit, but that just ruined the jokes/timing of the dialogue. After a few episodes though I adapted to the accents and the slang, and there's some moments where I've not laughed so hard at a sitcom since People Just Do Nothing. Yet Still Game feels original - shows like PJDN and This Country, as great as they are, feel like the children of The Office. This is more in line with the Royle Family in that it paints real characters with warmth and empathy underneath their sharp tongues. Not sure if I have a favourite episode but the ugly sister from Series 1 who shows up in Series 3 was fucking mint. Bobby has also become a favourite of mine. I'll revisit this with a score when I'm finished, but yeah, recommend Still Game for sure!

I have also been watching Chernobyl which is incredible - 5 episodes is all it is and you can guess what it's about but boy, oh boy, it's just beautifully shot and acted. And it will make you realise just how dangerous nuclear energy is. I can see why it's critically acclaimed - my one criticism would be that it's SO authentically made that it makes you wonder why they didn't have Russians acting in it (it's mostly Brits). Saying that, the way the old Soviet Union tried to cover it up, I doubt Putin would let a native besmirch his country.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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@gjones wrote:
I've rattled through five seasons of this and I can't get enough of it. It's my customary 10.30pm slot - stick an episode or two on and lose myself in this community of pensioners coping with loneliness, ill-health, technology and friendship; all while ripping the pish out of each other. Initially I actually struggled with some of the language, much like I did with Rab C Nesbitt. I'm a shandy-drinking Kent lad so I put it on subtitles for a bit, but that just ruined the jokes/timing of the dialogue. After a few episodes though I adapted to the accents and the slang, and there's some moments where I've not laughed so hard at a sitcom since People Just Do Nothing. Yet Still Game feels original - shows like PJDN and This Country, as great as they are, feel like the children of The Office. This is more in line with the Royle Family in that it paints real characters with warmth and empathy underneath their sharp tongues. Not sure if I have a favourite episode but the ugly sister from Series 1 who shows up in Series 3 was fucking mint. Bobby has also become a favourite of mine. I'll revisit this with a score when I'm finished, but yeah, recommend Still Game for sure!

You've captured the way I also feel about Still Game really well. When I reminisce about Still Game, I think of things like "warmth", "empathy" and "friendship" as much as a think about "Central Station: junkies, murders, whores, beggars" and "FILTERED THROOOOOOOUGH THE HEATHER!!!". It's first run was beautifully written at times - and what's great is you've still got Series 6 to enjoy! That includes my favourite episode, but also the one that was voted the best ever in a BBC Scotland public poll when Still Game finished in 2019.

After Series 6 finished in 2007, there was no new Still Games until the Glasgow Hydro live shows in 2014. I'd advise you to watch that before you crack on with Series 7:

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I finished all 9 seasons of Still Game, and it's definitely in that top tier of British comedy. For me, that's The Office, first three seasons of The Royle Family, Blackadder, Peep Show and The Inbetweeners. Series 7-9 I was sceptical of, given the cleaned up sets and improved makeup. But it still continued knocking it out of the park. It did peak in series 6 with that pizza episode being a highlight, and my favourite moments include Jack and Victor decorating Isa's flat, the whole pub quiz/Uni episode, and Navid and Boaby swapping jobs Applause

Fun fact: I went to school with a Scottish lad called Craig Lang.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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I'm pleasantly surprised to read that you enjoyed Series 7-9. I mostly did too, but I think we're in the minority. The critical response in the Scottish media and in previews was harsh, viewing figures dwindled as it went on, and the public perception seems to be that they should have quit while they were ahead and not bothered making any more episodes after the 2014 live show. I had pals that stopped watching it too, which would have been unthinkable back when we all crowded round in somebody's empty to watch Smoke On The Water or Hard Nuts.

I'm still a little sceptical of the newer episodes though, and I definitely don't think they're as good. The cleaned up sets and improved makeup are one thing, but the move to HD gave things an overproduced feel. I thought the cleaning up of the dialect affected it too. True, you can't get away with saying things like "Shut it Boabby, you're the only fag in here" anymore, but when those types of one-liners were replaced by daft slapsick like Isa becoming a football coach, then it's obvious that much of Still Game's goodness was lost.

Still, the main thing is that you enjoyed it. I fully agree that it's in the top tier of British Comedy. 

If you're ever looking for more Scottish comedy, maybe you could give Two Doors Down a go? It owes a lot to The Royle Family, but has Alan Partidge levels of cringe and awkwardness.
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gjones
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Yeah the newer episodes did have that dreaded sterile BBC sheen to them that can remove some of the authenticity. A recent example is Motherland; the first series was superb, but the last series (and Xmas special) were either too over the top, or the humour was diluted and not sharp enough. With Still Game, I think it still succeeded as it used the exact same locations, and I'm surprised they managed to capture the same atmosphere. Craiglang hadn't changed in that seven year gap. I was also surprised to see Craig Ferguson in an episode, having spent a lot of lockdown discovering his Late, Late Show videos on YouTube and really enjoying his style of comedy - itself probably too risky and old school, so it was great to see him in one of the better episodes. That football episode was definitely where the series showed its age - the acting in the football matches was atrocious. Nothing winds me up more than a goalkeeper diving the wrong way - it looks stupid and forced. The addition of Methadone Mick I really enjoyed though.

I'll check out Two Doors Down.
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We tore through Squid Game, the recently released Korean Netflix original.

Fans of Parasite will be in for an absolute ride here because this show, while perhaps not quite as good as Breaking Bad due to a few faults here and there, is absolutely incredible television.

I laughed, I cried, I swore, I hid.

People who have watched Parasite will pick up on that distinctly Korean storytelling. There were moments when I could predict what was going to happen, but overall the show just kept on surprising us right up until the end. I don't want to give anything away for anybody interested but if you enjoyed Parasite I think you'll enjoy this. There are similar but distinct societal commentaries that are explored in novel ways which discuss class, family, and journeys from childhood to adulthood, all framed within a pursuit of happiness.

The faults were more than compensated for by all the great work that went into this show. But the conclusion of the final episode was a bit disappointing. Again, I won't say why, I think it's important to go into this blind because the ride, for me at least, was highly original, shocking, thought provoking, enjoyable, and sad.

I should caution that there is some gore in this show. It isn't as visceral as Saw or anything like that, my girlfriend doesn't like gore and she managed through the show so it's not dreadful, but it's there.
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JayMoyles
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Yeah, I was interested in checking out Squid Game as it gave me some Danganronpa/Zero Escape vibes, plus I think I saw Matthew Castle hyping it up on Twitter as well. Sounds like it's worth a watch!
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Muss
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I really hope you get around to it. I've seen Squid Game trending a few times and it is absolutely a show that is ripe for being spoilt. There is one episode in particular which is probably the most moving television I've ever seen, but which, for many reasons, could be ruined if you go in with too much knowledge. Defo get on it sooner rather than later if you can!

The twisted games are there, but there's a real hard hitting social commentary that is alarmingly close to home that's explored alongside things like the social darwinism that's so often all that these dystopian shows really have to say about the world.

That's a lot more than I can say for Alice in Borderland, another Netflix original that involves sinister death games. This time it's set in Tokyo and is based off of a manga of the same name. People are raptured for reasons unknown to a parallel reality where they must compete games in order to survive.

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This is a live action show that operates in a weird zone between the sort of over-the-top action stuff and characters that you find in manga or anime and what my eye expects to see in a live action show. I'm never quite sure that the show knows whether or not it wants to be serious or somewhere closer to a dark superhero movie.

The thing that turns the show from something that could have been good to something mediocre is that all the characters just suck. A show doesn't have to have a huge amount of depth. Want to tell a story that just focuses on survival in a brutal world? That's fine. But I need characters to care about.

The way this show defines characters is really clumsy. You'll be subjected to tons of flashbacks every episode, which might work in the flip-book source material, but on the telly it's sloppy. It's very heavy-handed with its symbolism and foreshadowing as well. The flashbacks serve to characterise who a given person was in the before times, oftentimes transparently in the hope that we might feel something if they die. But that's the thing, there's never really a reason to care about anyone beyond just not wanting to see horrible things happen.

And it really doesn't help that the main character is a gamer college drop out, who has an encyclopaedic knowledge of cars, has a photographic memory when the plot says he needs to, can perfectly map out spatial geometry without tools, and who has the hardiest plot armour I've ever seen.

For me, it ultimately feels like a very run of the mill manga. It's got a dark and surreal premise, characters that don't really develop, a couple of incomprehensibly intelligent main characters, and a lot less depth to it than it wants you to think. It has its moments, but for each shot where the cinematography is poignant or something like that, but there are many more moments that just lack any sort of depth.

And there are also just so many episodes where the show bangs on about life, death, the circle of life in a very Darwinian way. This isn't that unusual for a lot of Japanese storytelling, for example you see this in Full Metal Alchemist. But in that show, it's a vector for exploring the characters and rooting them in an unforgiving world, characters which also have a crap tonne more depth to them than this one episode I'm referencing. Here it feels much more like a crutch. An, oh isn't this such a horrible world you should feel sad now dear viewer, sort of crutch that can't bear any load because you don't care about the characters and the logistics of the world itself are nonsense.

Maybe I would have felt differently had I not watched this after Squid Game. But I've also watched Darwin's Game recently, an anime on netflix that is, well you can probably guess its similar. Hell, this is pretty similar to Sword Art Online but at least that show has a run time of 20 mins per episode. There's nothing here except whatever logic the writer has in mind for the logistics behind the games. And that's fine, in so far as this being something totally watchable if you're into the premise. There just isn't anything smart going on under the surface.
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The thing I'm taking away from this is that I should probably give Sword Art Online a go. I was interested in AiB but only really because of its title. I'll let it go without much of a backwards glance.
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The_Jaster
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I'll probably give Squid game a watch at some point, I totally glossed over it from the netflix preview but Muss mentioning Parasite along side it makes me more interested in it.

---

I started watching the Midnight mass mini series last night & 2 episodes in it is a very slow burner, it's not wowed me yet but I think that's because my well-versed horror brain has figured out the twist already but I'll stick with it as I've enjoyed the cast's performances.
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JayMoyles
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Good to know about AiB, Muss. I was seeing it recommended in Twitter threads talking about Squid Game and was considering checking it out if I got on with Squid Game.

@Balladeer wrote:
The thing I'm taking away from this is that I should probably give Sword Art Online a go.  I was interested in AiB but only really because of its title.  I'll let it go without much of a backwards glance.

Chiming in to say that whilst I've not seen it, SAO is commonly lambasted by anime fans as being trash, so I wouldn't rush towards giving it a go...
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Balladeer
The Next Miyamoto
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I'm watching Black Clover Jay, I'm the king of the trash! (It has gotten better... but that's not saying all that much given that it has a really dreadful beginning. Much like Steins;Gate. Tongue )
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