Playmakers: New ESPN series--anybody watch?

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Lew Crippen, Aug 28, 2003.

  1. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    My wife talked me into watching the new ESPN series last Tuesday night and it was pretty decent. Did anybody else watch this?

    This is sort of a North Dallas Forty updated, in that it shows a pretty dark side of pro football. I was surprised, as I expected that ESPN would have a series that promoted football—not one which was critical.
     
  2. Tommy Ceez

    Tommy Ceez Second Unit

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  3. Tim Markley

    Tim Markley Screenwriter

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    I watched it and thought it was decent. I've got a Season Pass set up on the Tivo now.
     
  4. PeteyG

    PeteyG Stunt Coordinator

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    I was wondering if anyone was going to start a thread on this. . .

    Tommy,

    I read the Sports Guy's review the other day before it aired, and as always, he hit right it on the head. I thought the show was o.k., but feel they could do much more with it. Not quite sure if I like how over the top it is in some aspects (DH getting high and getting to the game within seconds of the kickoff), but it was certainly entertaining and I will watch it in the upcoming weeks.

    I probably would have enjoyed it more if Time Warner would get their act together and get ESPNHD in NYC!!![​IMG]

    Pete
     
  5. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    I’m actually a bit on the fence right now. This seems to be a series that could degenerate into the same old thing every week (and done less well every week), or it could turn out to be quite good.

    Right now I’m not concerned that there was only just a little shown of the owner/coach conflict. I expect that if the series develops well, areas like that can be a source of real conflict and tension. On the other hand, if we get more each week of the linebacker continuing to have flashbacks it will probably go downhill.
     
  6. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Didn't like it all that much, thought the direction was uninspired, as were the performances. Plus the voiceovers were just tiresome. And yes, it irks me to see that some people can practically get away with just about anything because they can pile up the yards in a game, or score a ton of points.
     
  7. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    "Playmakers" is an attempt to do the movie "Any Given Sunday" as a weekly series in the vain of upstart basic cable dramas like "The Shield," "Nip/Tuck," "Monk," "The Dead Zone"...etc.

    On thing that annoys the bejeesuz out of me in shows is narration like this show has. Personally, I would rather see characters in action and gauge what sort of person they are and what their pain is through what they do and how they interact with the other characters.

    It is better to show...not tell. When narration is done, it means that they were concerned people wouldn't get it.

    What it really means is that they need to do a better job of punching up the scripts. We don't need narration to understand a character's inner turmoil.

    I can't understand half of what is going on on "ER", but I don't need to have it explained to me.

    They should let the story unfold and let us decide for ourselves. I would prefer morally ambiguous characters. Instead, the show uses narration to make us believe that certain characters are more virtuous than others.

    Cut the narration and the show could become an intriguing drama. Obviously, it is on ESPN so I am not expecting "The Sopranos" or "ER", but I think that there is potential there to create a buzzworthy drama on ESPN.

    It will require greater character development and a certain amount of moral and ethical ambiguity. It already does that, but it will have to go further.
     
  8. GlennH

    GlennH Cinematographer

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    Glenn
  9. Diallo B

    Diallo B Screenwriter

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    Over the top. Yes.
    Hyperbole. Maybe.
    Not rooted in reality. No.

    You better beleive that stuff like what happened in Playmakers goes on. Although not a football player myself, I have hung out in college and still hangout on occasion with football players; college and pro. You should see the parties. Many of you may wish you were there. You should see the women, drugs and all the other stuff that goes on the night before a game, on gameday and definitely after the game.

    I think the problem with Playmakers was that they tried to put it all on one team in the first episode. It was like collecting punch after punch after punch from a Mike Tyson in his prime. It just bowled you over.

    For you folks talking about it ain't real, you need to see the light. Plenty of players have played high and or drunk. And although you can bet that the front office will keep it on the hush you better believe that someone has shown up to a game within the hour before the game and still played. Let's say a healthy Mike Vick/T. Owens/Rich Gannon/Peyton Manning showed up at the 11th hour with no explanation. Do you really think that they will not play. Seriously......... get real.

    Anyway, I enjoyed the show. I can definitely keep it in perspective and understand that it is Hollywood. But please beleive that this stuff is based in reality and not all fiction. As for those Pittsburgh Steeler comments, what did you expect them to say? I agree that the writers could have attempted to at least portray some positive aspect of pro football. But come on! It was the first episode. Let's see if the next few episodes have something positive to say.

    I will be watching next Tuesday. The look on the faces of the players before the drug test in the preview was too funny for me.

    djb
     
  10. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    It actually sounds as though it was my Dallas Cowboys of the last few years. True, no doubt Parcells would not have let the zoned out RB start because he was late, nor would have Tom Landry—but we have had other coaches. [​IMG]

    And so far, unlike the Cowboys no one has actually killed anyone else or been arrested and gone to prison for drugs.
     

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