April is already well underway and there’s a heck of a lot of TV on this month (I feel like I say this every month). The Binge With Me gang have reunited and here’s just some of what’s piled on our plates. Seconds anyone?
Wild Wild Country
Wild Wild Country is the show the people are all talking about. Making a Murderer and The Jinx were big in 2015 but it’s been a while since a prestige true crime series has stuck. Produced by the Duplass Brothers, Wild Wild Country is a documentary series following a godlike Indian guru (Bhagwan Rajneesh) that sets up camp in Oregon, America in the 1980’s. It switches between old 4:3 footage and letterbox with frequent abandon and yet it didn’t distract me besides pondering how far technology has come, and how foreboding landscape tracking shots are such a staple of the true crime genre these days. They even got Sheela to tell her side of the story, Bhagwan’s personal secretary.
Silicon Valley – Season 5
Silicon Valley is up to Season 5 now, and I know I sounded down on the show last season but I’m still going with it. This season is Erlich-Bachman-less and better for it but Richard Hendricks is getting harder and harder to root for. I hope the show has an end-game in mind because there’s only so many times I can see Pied Piper crash and burn and rise like the phoenix. Silicon Valley just got renewed for a sixth season so we’ll have to wait and see.
I’ve loved Bill Hader for a while now and Barry is something very different for him, even more serious than his turn in the film The Skeleton Twins. This is a dark comedy about Hader as a very good hitman who would rather be an actor, but he’s terrible at it. It definitely reminds me of Dexter in all its bloody and Michael C. Hall deadpan glory.
Legion – Season 2
Legion is the one show that could give Twin Peaks a run for its money in how much weird they can get on screen. Noah Hawley is keeping up with what he set up in the first season but this time we have famed Kiwi and Conchord, Jemaine Clement, in more than just a guest role.
Westworld – Season 2
Westworld did a more than decent job in its first season of setting up the world and now that the puzzle box has been solved we can get more inside the heads of our characters, that is unless Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy decide to pull the rug out from under us again. I mean they’ve already done it with this promised full-spoiler Reddit fake-out video and this season hasn’t even started yet!
The Handmaid’s Tale – Season 2
While it wasn’t what you’d call an easy watch, The Handmaid’s Tale also set up a dystopian world and now we’ve gone off-book. Who knows where it’ll go next. Elisabeth Moss is a treasure.
The Big Family Cooking Showdown
Just like The Great British Bakeoff, this series, The Big Family Cooking Showdown, is all about wholesome fun and doing your best. Families go head to head in teams, preparing their best dishes both on set and in their own kitchens for the judges. I love the relaxed atmosphere of the competition and the way all the recipes can be made at home. So far it’s sparked some ideas and certainly some appetite.
A Series of Unfortunate Events – Season 2
I hadn’t originally intended to watch A Series of Unfortunate Events after the release of the first season. I had only heard that the new interpretation was simply not great, and that somehow people prefer the Jim Carrey film better (which personally, I loathed!). However, since recently finishing up my second (or is it third, or maybe fourth?!) watch through of How I Met Your Mother, I am feeling just about ready to watch Neil Patrick-Harris playing someone other than Barney Stinson. This new season of Unfortunate Events has caught my eye and I’m ready and willing to give it a go. And if I don’t like it, you best believe the world is going to hear about it!
RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 10
I’ve been thoroughly enjoying this season of RuPaul’s Drag Race so far. We’re up to Episode 4 and it’s been classic Drag Race, full of drama, sass and craziness. While we’re getting to know the Queens a little better I haven’t yet had strong inclinations towards anyone in particular as a favourite. This may be that there aren’t any stand-out personalities this season, but more likely the case is that it’s just too early in the competition to get behind anyone yet.
Survivor: Ghost Island
The 36th series of Survivor is well under-way as we approach the merging of the tribes and numbers thin out. So far I have a few favourite survivors, and there have been some great tribal councils. I have noticed the challenges have all been very similar physical obstacle courses so far. That’s not unusual for pre-merge, but I’m getting a bit bored of the same old carry-the-bag-of-puzzle-pieces-through-the obstacles-then-throw-the-balls-through-the-hoops challenge. Also, the “Ghost Island” gimmick doesn’t seem to be being optimised by the players; the rules of the island aren’t that clear, but hopefully going forward more of the “cursed idols” will come in to play.
Krypton has the potential to be great. It starts off by introducing viewers to the world of Superman’s Krypton, then adds several interweaving plotlines, which involve romance and a love triangle, arranged marriages and political intrigue. Other elements include religious fanaticism, a brewing rebellion as well as an impending Armageddon. See my full impressions here.
Deception adds its own eccentric twist to the usual police procedural, which is somewhat refreshing. After all, at the end of the day, it’s a series about magicians using their craft to apprehend criminals. See my full impressions here.
The Flash – Season 4
The Flash is well into its fourth season now, and for the first time, Team Flash is not facing off against a rival Speedster. So it seems like the writers have decided to break the mould a little bit, which is nice to see. However, that all being said, it’s formula is still very similar to past seasons.
Rise seems to be sort of like Glee, except with a much darker tone. I ‘m not a big fan of musicals or Glee, but Rise seems to have a different vibe, so I’m going to keep an eye on it.
Initially, I found the plot of Deep State a bit hard to follow, but putting two and two together it seems like it’s about a retired spy being recruited by his former employers to hunt down some rogue agents. Hopefully, we’ll get to see plenty of spy action and intrigue.