NCIS at 13

A week or so ago, the magic icon on Netflix appeared, “New Episodes” for NCIS. Cool. Season 12 left with a cliff hangar of Agent Gibbs being shot by a child member of “The Calling” and I needed closure.

So, we tucked into some binge watching of the latest season of NCIS, re-watching the final episode of season 12 to get in the groove.

What a disappointment. It was a pretty weak closure of the cliff hangar (di Nozzo shoots the master mind in China), and then it got into the absurd. Seriously, they are called in to a massacre on a quasi “Doctors without Boarders” camp in South Sudan, and find out that the missing doctor is the husband of Jean Benoit? Are you fucking kidding me? How cheesy is that plot twist.

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It’s Over (Sopranos)

Not quite a marathon of binge watching, but as I have posted a couple of times already, we have been working our way through The Sopranos a couple of episodes a night. It took about a month with a few breaks (notably a week in Baja California), so it really wasn’t a binge, per se.

In my other observations, I mentioned how unsympathetic the characters are, how callous their actions, and how quick to violence or murder they are. The last few episodes took this to an extreme. From Chris shooting his screenwriting “partner” in a alcohol and narcotics fueled rage, to Tony’s hastening the demise of Chris Moltisanto after the auto wreck (you really can’t feel too sorry for his death, he superbly played the “dick” druggie throughout the series), and the escalation of the war of the families near the end.

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Mid series checkin – Sopranos

A while back, I posted about (finally) watching The Sopranos, and how I became hooked. I am now about halfway through season 4, and completely addicted. From the catchy opening credit music, to the music that indicates the outro, I just can’t put these down.

It is good that so many of the actors/actresses from Goodfellas found work. Including Spider (Michael Imperioli) whom Joe Pesci shot in the card game scene.

But, like Mad Men before it, the characters that you get into, that draw you into the episodes are so utterly horrible, so unsympathetic, that you can’t stop. Like the womanizing Don Draper, Tony Soprano is unfaithful, a louse, a fairly poor manager of his “crew”, with members of said crew testing their boundaries that contribute to chaos.

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Late to the Party – The Sopranos

I just started watching The Sopranos. Yeah, I am lame. Of course I heard all the raving and wonderful reviews, but I didn’t have HBO, and I never rented the DVD’s.

Now, with the Roamio, I have connected both my Netflix account and my Amazon Prime account for streaming. The Amazon app recommended “The Sopranos.”

I am hooked, about to start the 5th episode of the first season, and it is intoxicating.

It is also good to see all the actors from Goodfella’s getting some more work.

Yeah, I know how it ends, but it has been long enough since it originally aired, I can really enjoy it.

The first episode wasn’t quite enough to capture my attention, but it has grown on me.


Hawaii Five-O Observations

I have mentioned in the past about watching classic TV on Netflix and singled out Hawaii Five O as endlessly entertaining.

jack-lord-4Lately, I have swung back into that series, and I have a few observations:

  • 12 seasons – how on earth did that show last for 12 seasons? Seriously, by the 4th season it was becoming tiring to watch, and the plots have become super predictable.
  • Rain in Hawaii – Knowing that the islands get a pretty consistent amount of rain, it is remarkable that there are almost no scenes where they are prancing around policing in the rain. But every trip McGarrett takes to the mainland? You guessed it, he is under an umbrella. (it takes until season 8 before they are chasing a suspect and it is raining.)
  • Tourism Promotion – I get it, the show is a thinly veiled tourism promotion vehicle (as well as a way for Jack Lord to get paid to live in a garden paradise). But all that crime? Oy vey, according to Five-O, the islands are awash in gangs, prostitution, gambling, and Chinese spies. Not a very inviting place to vacation, eh?
  • Gunplay – The quantity of shootouts is truly staggering. I believe every episode has gun battles with bad guys being gunned down by the righteous agents of Five-O. In the real world, far fewer police actions involve firing their weapons. I get that it is the late 1960’s in the show, but holy hell, do they shoot a lot of people.
  • Drugs – One persistent theme is the scourge that is illicit drugs. In many of the episodes, there is the specter of LSD, marijuana, and even methamphetamines awash in the island. I know it is a sign of the times, but the portrayal of the strung out dopers is hilarious.

I know my parents looked forward to the weekly exploits of McGarrett and Danny Williams. 30 years on, meh. Give me the Rockford Files any day of the week.