Grown Up Television

25 07 2016

I finally got a chance to watch a couple of TV series that looked promising: HBO’s Vinyl and Show Time’s Billions. Both present an interesting contrast in the continued evolution of “grown up television”, television shows that aren’t really meant for a general audience. I enjoyed both, but noticed some differences that may make one a classic and one a bit of one-hit wonder.

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The End Of Mad Men

20 05 2015

The 7 seasons of Mad Men came to a close recently with the episode Person To Person. It wrapped up a show that started at the end of 1959, and brought us through the 1960’s into 1970. It was brilliant, and it rarely hit a sour note. Should it keep going? Were there more stories to tell?

Warning: In this piece I discuss events in the show that may give away important plot points. Read at your own risk.

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Corner Gas: The Movie

6 12 2014

My youngest son and I just got back from Corner Gas: The Movie, and it was great. I disagree with some of the reviews I’ve seen (one was still reasonably favourable, but wasn’t sure it was right as a movie, that it was still too much a “TV show”). It was a touch more serious than any of the TV episodes were, but that’s okay, because it still works. I’m going to try to avoid spoilers here, but if in doubt, see the movie, then continue reading this afterward. Trust me, if you like Corner Gas, you’ll like the movie. And see it in theatres while you can, because there is some fun stuff before the movie starts, and stay through to the very end of the credits (particularly if you are a Kickstarter backer like I was). It is worth it.

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The Works of Brent Butt (So Far)

8 06 2014

A Corner Gas movie is in the works. Principle photography starts in Rouleau shortly (and they have a Kickstarter campaign to cover some of the costs). This, coupled with my recent viewing of No Clue, Brent’s first motion picture, has inspired me to write some words about the works created by Brent. I won’t be going into his stand-up career or the TV appearances that go along with it. I will be focusing on his TV shows and his one movie to date.

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Ken Burns’ Jazz Interesting, But Long

3 08 2012

I’ve been wanting to watch the Jazz documentary by Ken Burns for quite some time, and I finally got around to it. It is a broad, sweeping narrative covering the roots of Jazz back in the 1890’s, and touches on the root form, Blues, as well as forms such as Ragtime that influenced Jazz. I learned a lot about Jazz, but I found the series lacking in some ways. Granted, it is a huge topic to cover, given it has more than a century of history. But unlike Burn’s previous work, The Civil War, I found the series to be all over the place.

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Corner Gas A Great Show

9 05 2012

This was originally posted to my other blog, Geoff on Stuff, on 2011/03/30. If you want to visit Corner Gas and The Ruby, now you can. The set is now a gift shop and memoriabilia display in Rouleau, Saskatchewan.

Back in 2004, a new Canadian show debuted on CTV called Corner Gas. The show was the brainchild of Brent Butt, a very funny comedian that hails from Saskatchewan, the province where the fictional town of Dog River, home of Corner Gas, resides. Why do I like the show so much?

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