- Oct 10, 2017
I'd love to talk to you about your pick for #1 too--I've greatly enjoyed Succession, and it does sometimes surprisingly move me--but I find it so terribly difficult to relate to any of the characters, it'd be tough for me to put it in my top 5. But maybe I'm not viewing it right. For a show to make my top 5, it has to either have a long list of deeply beloved and complicated, but effortlessly believable, characters (Wire, less-so GoT), be groundbreaking in how it tells or what it says (Twin Peaks), or show real character arcs, where experiences you see in the show literally change the characters (Breaking Bad, Sopranos). I thnk your criticism of Sopranos is pretty valid though--I gave it a 2nd time watch, and it was much less-than-remembered, though still enjoyable. For reference, I've watched Twin Peaks (season 1), Breaking Bad, and the Wire at least 3 times all the way through without any similar sense.This is Us and Million Little Pieces both drive me nuts but are favorites of Ms. Tikk. The dialogue is written from the POV of how many women wish men would talk but simply don't. Which is fine, I suppose, because there's also decades of TV programming (and films) written by men presuming how women thought and talked and never really did. But that doesn't mean I have to enjoy cloying, manipulative (the musical cues are shameless here) plot arcs about personal discovery, and especially when there's hockey on instead.
Of late, I'll recommend Tokyo Vice on HBO. It's only three episodes in but you get the sense that you're in very good hands. Michael Mann directed the premiere and they've followed his tonal cues. It's a noir-ish take on the Japanese crime underworld, with Ansel Elgort playing a self-taught Japanese-speaking crime reporter and Ken Watanabe as a police captain(?) who takes Elgort's character under his wing. It's extremely well crafted and shot.