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2019 Q3 TV DISCUSSION

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When it comes to Veronica Mars I treat Seasons 1 & 2 as onbe giant META season

James

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1 minute ago, West Newbury Bad Boy said:

Which is a thing a lot of people.

Though to be fair, I tapped out a couple episodes into season three and I'm probably not going back. So I'm talking straight out of my ass.

@Casey, your read on Veronica Mars was pretty close to the consensus IIRC, re: season one being the strongest of the original run. 

I understand it's a thing, but the since you tapped out the show has tried redeeming Piper repeatedly and this season made the biggest steps in that direction. Kohan herself thinks Piper grew. She didn't grow. I mean, she did, but it didn't last. Like I said, the season and the finale made it look like some kind of triumph for Piper to reject the one thing dragging her down, reject moving on, reject a better life that she was building to go back to the thing responsible for her winding up in prison in the first place. If it played out differently and they hammered home that people don't change or they go back to what they were or that it's hard to leave a total parasite then fine. But they didn't do that.

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Season 1 stumbles a bit on individual episodes, especially early, but "Who Killed Lilly Kane?" is my single favorite season long myth plot type thing in tv history.

The season long mystery in 2 is a pretty significant step down (it's still good, but it's less good) but I think on an episode to episode basis it's just as good, maybe even a bit better, outside.

I'll hold off on talking about season 3 until Casey finishes it.

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14 hours ago, Craig H said:

 

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The season and really the series goes out of its way to show how much of a cancer Alex is, they have Larry of all people accurately describe Piper and Larry even says that knowing how self-destructive Piper is she'll just wind up with Alex instead of Zelda, Piper's dad came to terms with Piper being gay and actually likes Zelda, Piper herself makes all of these great strides in being a healthier person and she's happy with Zelda and they show her being miserable because of Alex, and the ultimate end to Piper's story is...she really is that dumb and self-destructive and winds up with shitty Alex instead of Zelda and the episode makes it look like a triumph?! What in the fuck? Why would the real Piper think that was a remotely smart or good direction for character Piper to take?

 

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Piper winds up with Alex, Taystee doesn't get justice, Daya and Aleida are beyond fucked up, the one immigrant sent back to Mexico is likely going to die out there in the desert, the new warden is the worst choice imaginable, Cindy is homeless, Blanca gets her freedom and immediately gives it away, and a bunch of other stuff I'm forgetting.

None of that is uplifting or happy, but the way Kohan portrays it in the final episode, it's meant to look uplifting and like things are ending on a high note. It's just completely out of sync with the rest of the season. And look, I probably don't have any of these problems if the finale looks as dark as it actually was. I don't need a totally happy ending where everything works out for everyone, but it's just a total fumble.

You’re right. There wasn’t a lot of comeuppance. The warden getting fired was another wtf. 

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14 hours ago, Craig H said:

 

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Double post 

Edited by MADCAP
Double post

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5 hours ago, Brian Fowler said:

Season 1 stumbles a bit on individual episodes, especially early, but "Who Killed Lilly Kane?" is my single favorite season long myth plot type thing in tv history.

The season long mystery in 2 is a pretty significant step down (it's still good, but it's less good) but I think on an episode to episode basis it's just as good, maybe even a bit better, outside.

I'll hold off on talking about season 3 until Casey finishes it.

I can agree with all of that. The twists both storylines took are pretty incredible, didn't see either of them coming. S1's storyline was definitely the better one, but S2 had better individual episodes probably. S2's bus storyline was a bit much, then they went and added a bunch of stuff to it, but the payoff at the end makes it all worth it and wraps it together nicely (but I didn't like that they tied it into Veronica's rape, that seemed a little forced). S3 is weird, since what I thought would be the storyline for the season (the girls getting their head shaved + being raped) was just finished in... I don't know, episode 6? Maybe it's the Dean being murdered that's S3's storyline, but I'm less invested in that than anything that's happened so far in the series. S3 is definitely the weakest so far.

Veronica Mars has terrible taste in guys, though. I definitely stan Veronica and Leo D'Amato, but that's more because Max Greenfield is fucking awesome, instead of anything to do with the Leo character. Just when I start to feel good about Logan and their relationship, they yank it away and make Logan into a terrible person. Which, I mean, that's how a toxic person is, but still.

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The campus rapist story was misjudged in a lot of ways. It just doesn't work, imo. (Although we do know that Michael Cera was originally planned to be back for the season, but then he went and got too successful. And we know that Moe was essentially a replacement for him. And, of course, The Rapes of Graff had some subtle hints it was his character [which is extra fucked up for Arrested Development fans] so it's entirely possible it would've worked way better) and the strawman feminists is the single worst thing the show ever did.

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I'm about to finish S3E15 and they're wrapping up storylines left and right, and there's still like 5 episodes left. I really don't like how they wrote off Sheriff Lamb so quickly, and then just moved on like that isn't a big deal.

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I watched season 4 of Veronica Mars last week and think it was better than season 3 by a pretty decent margin.

Spoiler

TBH the most surprising thing about the season was that Logan actually was in the Navy. I expected it would be revealed he either had someone on the side or was just spending his time aimlessly traveling around while claiming to be off doing clandestine activities. That said I never cared for him as a character and thought that while he eventually came through as a good guy every now and then he was still a deeply toxic person and that Veronica could do far better as far as a relationship goes.

When Keith got his test results back I kind of assumed he lied to Veronica about the positive results and would end up dying at some point. That was a pretty clever swerve to have Logan buying it (presumably) at the end, but as I said above having never liked him as a character it didn't have the real visceral impact that was intended.

JK Simmons basically playing a more erudite, non-racist version of Verne Schillinger was a great touch. The casting for this season was very good across the board. I normally find Patton Oswalt insufferable but I think that actually worked for his character. Hopefully we get a season 5.

I've still got about 3 episodes left of the last OITNB season, but went ahead and read the comments as I'm not invested in it enough to bother being spoiled and pretty much figured it would end in such a way. The show got really good in the second season when they decided the other characters were more interesting than Piper but at the same time made her one of the stupidest and most unlikable supposed protagonists that I can think of.

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On 7/31/2019 at 1:19 AM, odessasteps said:

The visual of Magnum as Greg Evigan and Tully as Paul Reiser also works. 

And a few years later we get a Tully and Baby Doll reunion in a Mad About You reboot?

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33 minutes ago, driver said:

And a few years later we get a Tully and Baby Doll reunion in a Mad About You reboot?

Does that make Arn Anderson Ira, Mark or Selby?

James

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17 hours ago, Casey said:

I'm about to finish S3E15 and they're wrapping up storylines left and right, and there's still like 5 episodes left. I really don't like how they wrote off Sheriff Lamb so quickly, and then just moved on like that isn't a big deal.

Season 3 is really different, and there's a lot of micro reasons, but the one big macro cause is just "The CW"

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Well I finished S3 earlier and powered through S4, just finished it now.

That was really good. Probably ranks behind S1 for me. That ending though... Fuck. They had me at several points in the last 20ish minutes. Fuck.

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Okay

So, season 3: the show, by all rights, shouldn't have been renewed. It was the fourth least watched prime time network show in season 2 for the the entire year. The CW bringing it back was a surprise, but they wanted changes. Glamming up Veronica, not having a season long plot being the two biggest. So the plan was to have three major mysteries. Then, deep into the season, they cut the episode order by 2, after an extended hiatus for Top Model. Which is why there are all the stand alones at the end.

A lot of teen dramas tend to face plant at the transition to college, and this was certainly one of them. I like the O'Dell mystery more than the rapist one, but it isn't real strong either. I think Veronica was written kinda poorly for a large chunk of the season, I think Piz and Parker were both way too obvious "temporary fill in love interests" to ever fully function as actual characters.

But Debasement Tapes was really fun, and The Bitch is Back one of the best episodes. They had Veronica back on track, after waffling back and forth between "too soft" and "too mean' all year, she was Veronica Fucking Mars again, the unstoppable force of nature. So, of course, that was the end of the series.

It's interesting, I have more to say about the worst season than the other three. But it's such a mess, while maintaining just enough of what I loved to keep me involved in it.

The movie is certainly too much fan service, but as a fan that was being serviced, I can't really complain. And the fact that we funded the damn thing to the tune of $5 million, I think we deserved that service.

But season 4 didn't have to deal with that, and it was able to move the narrative forward in some big ways, with just little drops of fan service here and there.

About the end 

 

Logan Echolls is one of my favorite characters ever. He was a psychotic jackass at the start of the show, a blend of entitled rich douchebag, a grieving, broken kids, and an abused child who only knows how to respond with anger and violence and cruelty.

And despite all the reasons it shouldn't, it draws Veronica to him. She's an adrenaline junkie, and he's dangerous. They're toxic and damaging to one another, but they also heal one another. 

After they finally split when she left Hearst for Stanford, he bottomed up. Failed out of school, crawled into a bottle and nearly died. But he was pulled out of it by a professor who forced him into rehab and for him into Navy and flight school.

Veronica loved him, but she missed the danger, and it hurt them when they got back together, but Logan was a special character to me. A self destructive, arrogant asshole who actually became a better person. A broken child who became a complete adult.

Then he got murdered. In a twist on one of the most common tropes in genre fiction, the man died to move the woman's character forward. 

I feel like Jason Dohring deserves more success than he's had, he developed into someone that sold those strange angles of the character.

I hope there is a season 5, but if not, at least it got to end strongly.

Edited by Brian Fowler
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Honestly I'd be okay with a spin-off that centers around the Matty Ross character. They gave a lot of time to that character for her not to be featured in a Season 5. But... I also wouldn't mind a series based around a certain FBI agent, either.

Dick & Wallace really got screwed this season, just being glorified extras for the most part. But since the seasons aren't 22 episodes anymore, that's to be expected. Focusing on just Veronica, Keith & Logan and a plot that lasts the entire eight episodes was good too, though.

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15 hours ago, J.H. said:

 

Does that make Arn Anderson Ira, Mark or Selby?

James

Ira and Ole is Mark and Gene is Selby.

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3 hours ago, Casey said:

Dick & Wallace really got screwed this season, just being glorified extras for the most part. But since the seasons aren't 22 episodes anymore, that's to be expected. Focusing on just Veronica, Keith & Logan and a plot that lasts the entire eight episodes was good too, though.

I thought the amount of Dick we got was fine. He works best in doses, and considering how things ended if they were to do anything more with his character that would ideally come in another season. Wallace being shoved to the side was slightly disappointing, but kind of makes sense. They aren't in school anymore, and he has his own life mostly away from the same type of craziness Veronica deals with on a daily basis.

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Ryan Hansen was supposed to be in more, but he was working on two movies at the same time.

Wallace... Yeah, I think it's hard to get him really involved in the main story now.

I'd like to see Season 5 have Veronica doing a case somewhere else while Matty and Keith do one in Neptune.

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It's just weird that at Ryan Hansen and Percy Daggs III were doing promotional work for the new season when combined they probably had maybe 30 minutes of screen time the entire season.

Maybe I missed it, since I was watching the new season late last night/early this morning, but did they ever explain where Mac was? I know she was referenced a few times, but I can't remember why Matty ended up getting someone to do the computer stuff. I mean, they even found time to let the guy from S3 who paid for an escort's way out of that life to appear in this season for a minute.

I still need to watch the movie, which I should have watched before this season but it totally slipped my mind. Apparently it explains why Logan is all of a sudden in the Navy - so you can imagine my utter confusion when I started S4 and he was an intelligence officer. Big WTF moment for me, but that's my fault for not turning Hulu off and going to HBO on Demand.

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In universe: Mac spent spring break in Istanbul

In real world: Tina Majorino turned it down due to how little Mac was going to have to do.

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That was probably a wise decision, although I don't know if I'd turn down a paycheck for what's probably just one day's work or something. But what do I know?

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23 hours ago, Brian Fowler said:

I'd like to see Season 5 have Veronica doing a case somewhere else while Matty and Keith do one in Neptune.

This is what I'd really like to see happen. As a matter of fact that would be the perfect time to bring Mac back in as Veronica's support.

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Amazon Studios is developing Juiia Hart's sci-fi epic, Fast Color, into a series and Viola Davis will be an executive producer.

If you haven't seen this movie yet, hang your head in SHAME~!  You can redeem yourself by renting / buying a copy since it was recently released on DVD, so it should be available for retail sale, On Demand, or through streaming services.

Edited by J.T.

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Out of the blue the other day I decided I'm going to watch Cheers from beginning to end. I grew up with Cheers and I've seen every episode, but it's been a long time since I've watched it. Besides being the best sitcom of all time, with the best theme song of all time, it's amazing how great season one is. I'm at the one that introduces Andy Andy and it's been one classic show or scene after another. I was a 12 year old kid when I saw these for the first time in 1982-83 and so much of this I clearly remember watching at that time. I feel that it never "jumped the shark" over 11 seasons and just got funnier and  funnier, but knowing that season one was a flop despite how great it is shows how back then in the days of three networks, shows were given chances if they were good enough. Especially on NBC since they were struggling.

Edited by Johnny Sorrow
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I've never seen Cheers from beginning to end.  There's probably a bunch of episodes I've never seen.  But I've seen a ton of episodes from all seasons. Woody was my guy and he's been one of my favorite actors since forever. 

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