30 July 2009

TV shows I have been watching recently

True Blood, series 1. Very mixed feelings on this one. Basically good. However, the gross sex scenes (possibly partly just the HBO sex scene tax) really detracted a lot. It also moved very slowly for the amount of plot present - if you are going to stretch a mystery over 10 hours of TV, you need more going on.

Castle, series 1. Initially this didn't grab me that much. Nathan Fillion was fun to watch, as expected, but the setup - "mystery writer helps detective solve murders" - is not exactly the most original. The show rides on the characters, and Fillion as Castle and Stana Katic as the detective forced to work with him are both good. Not deep, but fun.

Leverage, first few episodes. The setup is that an ex-insurance investigator creates a team of criminals to commit crimes in order to take down bad guys that the law won't touch. It's a good setup, but I was let down by most of the characters being one-dimensional (although to be fair, that might improve later) and more importantly by the way they set up each episode. They rely on important stuff happening off screen a lot, and magic computers that give the team all the information they need to set up a con, and stuff like that. It's the kind of stuff that could be shown being done in a plausible way, but they just skip past that and have everything fall into place instead. Currently not really interested in watching any more.

Avatar: The Legend of Aang. We got this for the daughter of the house, and she really loved it, so I got to re-watch the whole run. I enjoyed it just as much as the first time. I also noticed that there's a fair amount of foreshadowing that I (of course) hadn't picked up on when I didn't know how it was going to end.

21 July 2009

The Caryatids by Bruce Sterling

A strange novel.

Lots of really cool ideas, but the plot basically happens only in implied spaces.

The novel essentially shows you a few little vignettes in the world, and you need to piece together most of the events from those. Sterling also sets them up so each part of the novel is the aftermath and/or setup for something big.

Not really sure what I think of it.