January 3rd, 2013

mars

Why yes, this will be about Person of Interest again

On the one hand it's sad and depressing that I have to get excited when a show turns out to be well-planned with actual continuity.
On the other hand: SPLEE - this show is turning out to be well-planned! With actual continuity! And also surprisingly aww-worthy, for a show that is essentially Batman with a better dress-sense. Maybe it's just the TV dry spell talking, but I think I might be a little bit in love here. It's just ... it's a procedural but they remember things that happened before! And it has a PLOT, not even an arc but an actual honest-to-god plot! In a procedural! I KNOW, shocking right? And I actually care enough to follow it, too, that doesn't happen nearly often enough. I was especially surprised to find it has almost as many questions and mysteries as Lost and all the Lost-wannabes, but even more shocked when they actually started answering them in a satisfying pace (atleast when watching in a marathon) and not getting overwhelmed by them. BTW, if I sound cynical about the state of TV today, it's because I am. So many shows does not hold up if you poke them even with a feather, which I am compulsively inclined to do, so it's nice to see one that actually seems like it was written by people who thought things through, rather than pick random character and plot points from a hat and paste them in and then get hit in the head with an anvil and forget all previous episodes
[Spoilery details]
Anyhoo, things I'm loving:
* A Big Bad that somehow is actually kind of understandable and sympathetic. I credit this in large parts to him being played by Daddy Mars, Enrico Colantoni, which always make me feel warm fuzzies to his character, but they also introduced him in a smart way and then proceeded to give him a backstory that motivates his actions. He's not just some mustache-twirling stereotypical psycho, and not just because he's played by Keith Mars although that does help. With a less likable actor and without the flashbacks his parental issues might have felt like a trite excuse for his actions, but instead he's ... a lot like Dexter, really, only he's taken a "if you can't beat em, join em - or better yet take over the whole damned thing" approach instead.
* In keeping with the breaking of stereotypes: Carter isn't a Single Mom Cop - she's a badass cop, who just happens to have a son. They don't make a huge deal out of it like so many shows do, even when he's kidnapped by aforementioned Big Bad she still keeps her head on and stands her ground. In fact, she always stands her ground all the time and stands up to anyone who needs it - John, Elias, CIA, FBI... Badass lady, I dig her a lot
* The show is fantastic at creating hilarious or intriguing situations with the characters. It's rarely them just working a case - they get into trouble almost every episode, which actually makes sense too because they're a 2-man team (with two cops helping them out on the DL) and one of them is a huge dork. Then there was that episode where they went all 2 Men and a Baby, which was hilarious and adorable and probably my favorite episode, and then Harold got high as a kite on extacy... Never a dull moment, basically! 
* Maybe not loving, but liking: Lionel, who is slowly growing on me even though he's, on paper atleast, the kind of dirty-cop version of Chief Wiggum stereotype - bumbling, lazy, corrupt. Even this guy they've managed to turn around into a likable, if not exactly lovable. character who wants to be good but is forced to be bad. He's this show's punching bag, from every direction - it's hard not to feel sorry for the guy. He even saved John's life and got no thanks in return! Poor schmuck. And he's actually not as dumb as he looks, either. 

What I don't love is:
* The dead ex girlfriend. And normally here I'd go on a serious hissyfit about it and what a boring sucky trope it is, but I actually do see the need for it here, and they're doing it in a way that doesn't entirely want to stab myself in the eye so. I'll shut up about it, but so help me if she comes back from the dead too..
* Because yeah, the ex partner not being dead? Meh. I don't like her, and the one redeeming thing about the flashbacks with her was that I knew she was dead. But noooo, of course she isn't. Freaking spies, can never trust em to stay dead! 

So pleased I started watching this show, it's made for a great start to the year. Which is more than you can say for my resolution to go to bed earlier, but hey - it's still before 3am
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