bmasters9

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,255
Real Name
Ben Masters
A show like The Handmaid's Tale can hold its own against anything made in any era. It may not be to your taste, and yes it's dark, but we live in dark times.
There is a similar show that's coming up in a week on Hulu called The Act-- it's a seasonal anthology that will dramatize one sensational true-crime story with each season's worth of it. The first season of 8 episodes will be about Gypsy Rose Blanchard and her mother Dee Dee (specifically, how Dee Dee had Munchausen by proxy, and acted like her daughter Gypsy had myriad diseases like paraplegia, heart murmur, etc., and as such got donations aplenty from many charitable organizations). Only problem was, Gypsy had none of those diseases in reality, but her mother acted like she did.

Here's the latest trailer for it; it has Joey King as Gypsy, and Patricia Arquette as Dee Dee, et al., and I'm seriously thinking about switching to Hulu from Netflix if this show is as good as I think it'll be:

 

The Drifter

Supporting Actor
Joined
Jan 29, 2019
Messages
819
Real Name
Jim
Everyone is certainly entitled to their preferences, but the notion that today's television is somehow inferior to what came before, or that today's writers and actors are lazier than their predecessors, is absurd. A show like The Handmaid's Tale can hold its own against anything made in any era. It may not be to your taste, and yes it's dark, but we live in dark times.
Agreed. I watch a plethora of newer TV shows & find the majority of them either good or great. In fact, there are so many great shows coming out these days that I literally can't keep track of all the ones I want to see, nor do I have time to see everything I want.

Some recent shows that really stand out include: The Handmaid's Tale (based on a novel that came out in the '80's), The Good Fight, Legion, The Gifted, Manifest, Black Mirror.....and too many others to list.

I also have a strong interest in seeing American Gods, but want to read the Neil Gaiman novel (that the series is based on) first.
 
Last edited:

Bryan^H

Lead Actor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2005
Messages
7,062
Speaking of TV DVD leaving us. The Mill creek Blu-Ray complete sets that sell for next to nothing look to be going out of production, Miami Vice, Airwolf, Quantum Leap, Knight Rider, and Rockford Files. I need to get The Rockford Files, and Miami Vice. No way I'm paying secondary market prices.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

ScottRE

Supporting Actor
Joined
Feb 6, 2005
Messages
903
Location
New York, Planet Earth
Real Name
Scott
I think there is something to be said for too many choices being imprisoning rather than freeing. I miss - even going back just 10-15 years - that shows routinely entered the cultural zeitgeist. I miss water cooler conversations. It’s a little hard to do that when the current most popular shows have all their episodes released at once - how do you have a casual conversation about last night’s episode when there was no “last night’s episode”.
There's also almost no such thing anymore as a "favorite episode" because nearly every show does season long (or more) arcs. So individual episodes get lost in the whole. I can't tell you my favorite episode of Agents of SHIELD, but I can tell you my favorite storyline. But when it comes to any of the episodics, easy peasy.

Also, the arcs cause a series to have lesser rerun value to me. I can always see myself popping in favorite episodes of Star Trek, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, V or SeaQuest, but I won't grab a show like Babylon 5 or Alias unless I am able to care out a few weeks to binge the series. And I hardly ever do that.
 

bmasters9

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,255
Real Name
Ben Masters
Also, the arcs cause a series to have lesser rerun value to me. I can always see myself popping in favorite episodes of Star Trek, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, V or SeaQuest, but I won't grab a show like Babylon 5 or Alias unless I am able to care out a few weeks to binge the series. And I hardly ever do that.
Do you feel the same way about O-R CBS Dallas or O-R ABC Dynasty?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

jcroy

Producer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2011
Messages
5,664
Real Name
jr
Speaking of TV DVD leaving us. The Mill creek Blu-Ray complete sets that sell for next to nothing look to be going out of production, Miami Vice, Airwolf, Quantum Leap, Knight Rider, and Rockford Files. I need to get The Rockford Files, and Miami Vice. No way I'm paying secondary market prices.
Could it be that Mill Creek's licensing deal with Universal is expiring?

If so, then will Universal re-release all this stuff again?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

The Drifter

Supporting Actor
Joined
Jan 29, 2019
Messages
819
Real Name
Jim
Great points, everyone. As a teen growing up in the '80's, my household never had cable. So, my TV options were only limited to the networks - and, without cable, we always had crummy PQ. And, as time went on, without cable these options seemed to get even more limited. When I was going to college in the early '90's (still living @ home to save money), I seem to remember only 1-2 stations that we could get without snow. So, by '93/'94, I had stopped watching TV completely due to my disgust with the poor reception & general lack of interest in the programming offered. When I finally moved out & got my own place not long after, I initially didn't even have a TV at all for many years.

I got re-interested in seeing TV shows when I got my first DVD player in 2003. At that point, TV shows were slowly making their way to DVD - and I was amazed at the content available.

I think there is something to be said for too many choices being imprisoning rather than freeing. I miss - even going back just 10-15 years - that shows routinely entered the cultural zeitgeist. I miss water cooler conversations. It’s a little hard to do that when the current most popular shows have all their episodes released at once - how do you have a casual conversation about last night’s episode when there was no “last night’s episode”.
Good point. I sometimes talk to people about TV shows, and there are so many great shows out now that it's hard to pick which one to talk about/focus on - LOL. Also - as I mentioned before - I literally do not have time to watch everything I want to. I'm currently watching some newer shows & some older shows, and also have a huge back-log of shows I've never seen - but want to.

And that's not even counting all of the shows I've seen once & want to give a re-watch at some point, i.e. The Sopranos, Deadwood, Lost, Smallville, etc.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

Worth

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2009
Messages
3,630
Real Name
Nick Dobbs
Speaking of TV DVD leaving us. The Mill creek Blu-Ray complete sets that sell for next to nothing look to be going out of production, Miami Vice, Airwolf, Quantum Leap, Knight Rider, and Rockford Files. I need to get The Rockford Files, and Miami Vice. No way I'm paying secondary market prices.
I wish they cost next to nothing. I'd pick up Rockford, but the cheapest I've seen it in Canada is $85, versus $48 for the DVD set. Miami Vice too, except the DVD set is even cheaper.
 

MartinP.

Screenwriter
Joined
Mar 26, 2007
Messages
1,070
Real Name
Martin
I personally haven't given up on new releases . I still think we will see the occasional show . Don't forget that many popular shows are already out on DVD. So it's mostly the less popular stuff we are waiting for - shows like Trackdown , Adventures In Paradise , December Bride , Rin Tin Tin, People's Choice , 1950s Dragnet, East Side West Side, Ben Casey, Colt 45, He And She. I keep hoping we'll see some of them . Maybe a company like Classic Flix will step up and release some of them,
I keep seeing East Side, West Side pop up routinely enough as a show people want. I've never seen any of it, but I have read comments from those who have and they all think it's a pretty dull show, so I wonder what the interest is in it?
 

Bert Greene

Supporting Actor
Joined
Apr 1, 2004
Messages
794
I keep seeing East Side, West Side pop up routinely enough as a show people want. I've never seen any of it, but I have read comments from those who have and they all think it's a pretty dull show, so I wonder what the interest is in it?
I wouldn't say "East Side, West Side" is dull. But it's not exactly much fun, unless you like a weekly visit to the urban ghetto, and meeting up with a lot of sad-sack characters who are always mired in some kind of legal or social hell. Usually with the blame placed on 'society' at large. Not my cup of tea, as I find it all rather suffocating and oppressive, with characters that always seem powerless, mewling, and in constant need of compassionate, god-like government workers to set things straight for them.

But a few episodes are pretty decent, here and there, akin to a somewhat grimier, more drab version of a "Naked City" episode. There was a memorable episode involving 'block busting,' guest-starring Joseph Campanella that was pretty strong stuff. But, eh. All in all, the series wasn't something I found all that entertaining or enjoyable. Quite the opposite, in fact. But some folks around here happily go for such stuff. I'll let them advocate for it, if they wish.
 

Gary OS

Producer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2004
Messages
5,192
Location
Florida
Real Name
Gary
I wouldn't say "East Side, West Side" is dull. But it's not exactly much fun, unless you like a weekly visit to the urban ghetto, and meeting up with a lot of sad-sack characters who are always mired in some kind of legal or social hell. Usually with the blame placed on 'society' at large. Not my cup of tea, as I find it all rather suffocating and oppressive, with characters that always seem powerless, mewling, and in constant need of compassionate, god-like government workers to set things straight for them.

But a few episodes are pretty decent, here and there, akin to a somewhat grimier, more drab version of a "Naked City" episode. There was a memorable episode involving 'block busting,' guest-starring Joseph Campanella that was pretty strong stuff. But, eh. All in all, the series wasn't something I found all that entertaining or enjoyable. Quite the opposite, in fact. But some folks around here happily go for such stuff. I'll let them advocate for it, if they wish.
Well said, Bert. I'd just as soon go get a root canal as watch an episode of East Side, West Side. At least with the dentist, I know the pain serves a purpose.

Gary "urban-centered dramas, heavy on depression, just aren't my idea of entertainment" O.
 

bmasters9

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,255
Real Name
Ben Masters
I'd just as soon go get a root canal as watch an episode of East Side, West Side. At least with the dentist, I know the pain serves a purpose.
I hate to say it, but I'm feeling the same about Fox's recent widescreen all-in-one of O-R 1965-68 CBS Lost In Space that I got some time ago at the Wal-Mart in Simpsonville-- that one's incredibly boring (while The Streets of San Francisco is a breeze by comparison, at least to me)!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

LouA

Screenwriter
Joined
May 29, 2012
Messages
1,814
Location
New jersey
Real Name
Lou Antonicello
I keep seeing East Side, West Side pop up routinely enough as a show people want. I've never seen any of it, but I have read comments from those who have and they all think it's a pretty dull show, so I wonder what the interest is in it?
Correct . It was a pretty dire and sometimes depressing show . I recall one episode with Maureen Stapleton as a homeless woman that was pretty sad . Still it was a fairly well written show - I'd say on a par with Naked city or Eleventh Hour (another not too happy drama ! ). So if there are any future vintage TV show release, it should get some consideration.
 

LeoA

Effects Supervisor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2008
Messages
2,984
Location
North Country
Real Name
Leo
Speaking of TV DVD leaving us. The Mill creek Blu-Ray complete sets that sell for next to nothing look to be going out of production, Miami Vice, Airwolf, Quantum Leap, Knight Rider, and Rockford Files. I need to get The Rockford Files, and Miami Vice. No way I'm paying secondary market prices.
Bryan, can you suggest a good retailer for the Rockford Files?

Amazon's price is pretty steep. I should've ordered last year when I think I saw it for $50.
 
Last edited:

David Weicker

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Messages
3,531
Real Name
David
Bryan, can you suggest a good retailer for the Rockford Files?

Amazon's price is pretty steep. I should've ordered last year when I think I saw it for $50.
Deep Discount currently has RF Blu for $68.10 (with possibly another $5 off)
 

Wvtvguy

Second Unit
Joined
Jul 12, 2010
Messages
276
Real Name
Marc
A big difference younger people and their exposure to old tv shows. I grew up in the 70’s & 80’s so everyday I came home from school, it was Green Acres, Superman, Bewitched, or Beverly Hillbillies. I grew up with an affectation for old shows.

I didn’t get TV land until the late 90’s but it was still showing plenty of old shows. For me, I loved seeing things I watched as a kid and even watching older shows like Adam-12. I became an old movie buff when I was 14 so older material always intrigued me. When TV land stopped airing shows I enjoyed, I started going to dvds. First it was the things I watched in syndication & then shows from childhood. Then I became curious and started going back further to things like Naked City & the Fugitive. I don’t watch many current shows now but have plenty on dvd to keep me for years. I’m glad I got in while there were plenty readily available.
 

LeoA

Effects Supervisor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2008
Messages
2,984
Location
North Country
Real Name
Leo
I'm in my mid 30's and pretty much grew up on 1950's-1970's television. Plenty of newer shows like Cheers that I enjoy, but it's far outnumbered by shows older than I am.

My situation is helped slightly at least since I'm so late to classic movies. That addiction only struck about 10 years ago, so there's still tons to discover and seek out even as the classic tv scene dwindles on optical media. And thanks to publishers like Kino Lorber and Warner Archive, there's still new releases to watch out for and anticipate with regularity like the four upcoming Crosby/Hope Road movies from Kino on Blu-Ray.

So things really haven't changed yet for me with this hobby. It bothers me though that several tv favorites likely won't get the treatment that they deserve (Ozzie & Harriet, My Three Sons, and Make Room for Daddy are my big three), shows that received superior transfers like Emergency! after their original DVD release probably won't see those upgrades brought out on DVD or Blu-Ray, and shows that I've never seen much of but would like to see will likely go unwatched in this lifetime (Like the Jean Arthur Show, Sierra, etc.).
 
Last edited:

Pathfiner

Second Unit
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
296
Location
Cornwall, England
Real Name
Jeff
while it's possibly an age thing I just do not find modern TV very watchable to be honest

IF the plot is better than average I find I know it from somewhere before...

most of today's actors for me have zilch charisma or any truly memorable aspects, TV characters now seem to me to require ticking certain 'boxes' all the time and come across as so stereotypical if not just plain bland !

shows just do not grab me anymore, where as say a show from the fifties to eighties (itself a VERY long period of time indeed) do still hold my interest and above all ENTERTAIN me still

so with here in the UK the appalling modern so utterly up itself BBC forever trying to 're-educate us' to their preferred way of thinking and ITV full of silly shows like throwing z rate non celebs into jungles while other channels just film a bunch of youngsters swanning about on a beach or in a house plus cake baking shows (wow !!!)

- I find I am more and more departing into the classic TV world of yesterday....with great pleasure !
 

Josh Steinberg

Film Editor
Reviewer
Joined
Jun 10, 2003
Messages
18,556
Real Name
Josh Steinberg
I think there’s good TV and bad TV now, just as there was 20 or 30 or 50 years ago. But I do think there has been a substantial change over time in how TV is made and distributed and that’s changed the kind of stories being told and the way they’re being told. 50 years ago, you had shows doing as many as 39 episodes a year. They were basically gonna be in your home with new stuff every week, and since it was usually episodic and the status quo didn’t change much week to week, you really had to care about the characters and how they were portrayed more than the stories, because the stories weren’t always gonna be great and/or original.

There’s definitely been a shift to fewer episodes, more connection between episodes, and more focus on plot and story arcs over recurring adventures with set characters.

I don’t think one is inherently better or worse than the other. I do think it’s disappointing that with all the different broadcast, cable and streaming options available for new content, that there isn’t more of a space or desire for both the new and old formats to coexist.
 

Forum Sponsors

Forum statistics

Threads
344,085
Messages
4,699,776
Members
141,162
Latest member
Ree