Monday, August 3, 2020

Home Movies--What We're Watching

DEBORAH CROMBIE: It is just the beginning of August and it already seems like it has been a LONG summer, with no going out for many of us, no sports (until just this last week or so), nothing but repeats on broadcast TV, and the streaming options beginning to feel exhausted. Or maybe it's just me that feels exhausted by the thought of tackling another thirty or forty or fifty episodes of a streaming drama!



The hubby and I battled (I typed "battered", which might be more accurate) through all three seasons of FORTITUDE, which I now wish I could un-see. Or at least get that twenty-four hours of my life back! Ugh. I liked the first season (Stanley Tucci was fabulous), but it went way downhill from there. Last weekend we started ABSENTIA, with Stana Katic, and after two episodes I thought meh. And wondered how they could possibly stretch that premise into three seasons…


PBS has given me GRANTCHESTER, with ENDEAVOUR to come, and I watch the weekly episodes of MIDSOMER and ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL (yes, I know both series are available streaming, but it's nice to have something to look forward to on the days when they air.)  But I cannot drum up any enthusiasm for the next multi-episode drama. The highlight of my past month has been a little delight of a movie called SING STREET, about four boys in 1980s Dublin who form a band. This is from the same team that did ONCE, if you liked that, and it is absolutely delicious. AND you'll want to go out and buy the soundtrack!




So, HELP, dear REDS! What have you watched lately that's been gripping, or different, or utterly charming? I need a cure for my curmudgeonly-ness! 


JENN McKINLAY: I’ve been horrible with television this summer. No time, less interest. Finally, finished BOSCH and OZARK, but really couldn’t get jazzed to watch anything else. Although, I did watch Martha Stewart’s new show, MARTHA KNOWS BEST, last night and I actually learned some gardening tips and she’s delightfully snarky. I’ve never watched her before so that was rather charming. The fam has been watching a lot of new and old movies together. KING OF STATEN ISLAND (new) was great. SIXTEEN CANDLES (old) was a hoot and horrible. As the Hooligans observed, we were awful people in the eighties and, yet, we had a lot of freedom, which I miss. Also, Jake Ryan, the hot guy in that movie, turns 60 this year. Now I need to go lie down and process my high school crush being an old man.

HALLIE EPHRON: I find myself starting to watch something and then losing interest and never going back. I’m fresh out of Great British Baking Shows. I think I need Britbox. What I have enjoyed are the two Hannah Gadsby comedy specials on Netflix: “Nanette” and “Douglas.” And I love documentaries about art. There’s a series on Amazon called “Great Artists with Tim Marlow” (2 seasons) that’s quite good. If you like art history.


LUCY BURDETTE: I am so boring. The only thing I’m watching is the PBS newshour and a second runthough of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS. I’m waiting eagerly for the next season of LAST TANGO IN HALIFAX to be released. And that’s all I’ve got!


RHYS BOWEN : I’ve been escaping to my roots all summer. We got Britbox and I’ve binged old comedies like FAWLTY TOWERS. Also all the Miss Marples with Joan Hickson. I’ve found a channel called Dabl and every afternoon a have my cup of tea and watch ESCAPE TO THE COUNTRY, in which Brits choose lovely cottages in Devon or Wales. Heavy sigh. Apart from that no tense dramas. MASTERCHEF. Oh, and Broadway HD is a brilliant channel with THE SHOW THAT GOES WRONG. Hilarious


HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: Oh, Rhys,we saw that in the theater. I thought it was hilarious--SUCH difficult stagecraft! Jonathan thought it was ridiculous. I said--do you know how difficult it is to be that bad? He didn't, I guess.  


Anyway. I absolutely adored THE MORNING SHOW on Apple TV. I was never a fan of Jennifer Anniston--but now I am. Loved it. We got Apple TV to watch DEFENDING JACOB (pretty good--book better) and THE GOOD FIGHTt because Christine Baranski is amazing. It was such fun to watch, and I’m glad we did, but… 


Now. I have a confession.  We are watching a show that I know is--what's the word--let’s just say not my usual choice.  It’s called HOME BEFORE DARK, and it’s a ten part series about a boy who goes missing years ago, and the 9 year old reporter (long story) who is obsessed with solving it with her writer-reporter-dad and lawyer-mom and includes every stock character you can imagine.


 


After ten minutes, I said to Jonathan--no no, let’s not watch. That little girl is too annoying. And the writing is awful.  Then we kept watching. She’s still annoying, but she’s just so darn determined to play this role that you have to applaud her. It’s kind of--a cozy. But not really. And it’s well done, I have to reluctantly admit, See what you think.


JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING: We’re skipping streaming series entirely, as my ability to focus is down to → ← . Instead, we’ve been having themed movie weeks (which often run over a single week, since we don’t watch a movie every night.) Right now, we’re on Space/Astronaut week, which coincided wonderfully with the Space X Dragon return to earth yesterday - first American space mission to splash down in 45 years! We’ve seen SPACE COWBOYS and APOLLO 13, with THE RIGHT STUFF, THE MARTIAN and FIRST MAN on deck. We’ll probably also do HIDDEN FIGURES for it’s brilliant insight into the unsung lives of NASA’s African American “computers.”


One of the benefits of themed movie week has been including older films in with the more current stuff; we saw AIRPORT (1974) for Plane week and MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS (also 1974) for Train week. We may include MAROONED (1969) for Space week - can you believe my kids have never seen Gregory Peck?!?


DEBS: Julia, I absolutely love your theme weeks! I would so do this. Alas, I don't think Rick would ever agree...


I'm so glad to know that I'm not the only one who can't focus... Although I think part of my problem is that I really sort of miss episodic TV. Remember when there was a continuing story or character arc, but each episode was solved--or resolved--in some way? It seems to me that in a lot of the current streaming stuff, the writers are trying so hard to stretch one idea over DOZENS of episodes that it just becomes unsustainable.


But to un-curmudgeon a bit, we finally got around to watching the first couple of episodes of LINE OF DUTY this weekend, and I was totally hooked!!! So YAY for series TV!! (At least the Brit versions.)


READERS, are you bingeing? Can you focus? What is un-missable, before I totally turn into the GRINCH!


(Rhys, I would absolutely LOVE your ESCAPE TO THE COUNTRY, but fear I can't get it as we don't have cable or satellite. Boo.)




89 comments:

  1. We’ve had our own sort of Space/Astronaut viewing here, mostly science fiction movies . . . STAR TREK, FIRST MAN, APOLLO 13 . . . and, of course we watched the launch of the Mars Rover and the astronauts’ return from the space station . . . lots of NASA TV in our house lately.

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    1. The return from the space station was so nerve-wracking. I was teary when they splashed down.

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    2. It certainly is; it’s particularly difficult waiting through those five-or-so minutes of reentry communications blackout . . . .

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    3. Did not watch this return, but remember that scary black out space from John Glenn and Scott Carpenter, when the school day paused and several classes jammed into a few class rooms to watch the landing. Also remember not understanding as a 14 teen year old, why those “ancient” (50 something) teachers wept. The perspective of being a 70 something sees clearly.

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  2. I finally broke down and watched Breaking Bad. Since I watch Better Call Saul it made sense to watch the origin show that’s in the future. Make sense? Anyway I’m wrung out and not up to multi season shows for a while. Peaky Blinders is still on the horizon. I have been watching season 2 of The Umbrella Academy. Really cool music in it. And I found a movie called The Sapphires about an Aborigine girl group in the 60s Australia. It is delightful and based on real people. My weekly pleasure is watching The Alienist on TNT. It is so well done.

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    1. I've heard The Umbrella Academy is good, Pat. And I will look for The Sapphires. I'd also like to see The Alienest but don't think I can get TNT streaming.

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    2. The Sapphires is wonderful!! We both really loved it.

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    3. LOVE Breaking Bad. Amazing. And oh, Saul was SO GREAT

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  3. I’m watching Endeavor on a weekly basis on PBS. Like you, Debs, I like having something to look forward to on a certain night. I sure miss Call the Midwife weekly, and I am looking forward to Last Tango in Halifax.

    My husband watched the Brad Pitt movie about space. Astra? It was pretty good, but I’d rather watch a mystery. Husband has been rewatching Hell on Wheels, which I really liked, but he’s been watching it mainly in the family room. We watched a few episodes on the living room TV. Yes, we usually watch TV separately. Otherwise, I’d never get to watch my British shows. I watched the latest season of Ozark and thought it was excellent. I watch reruns of Criminal Minds, but I’m starting to see too many repeats. I finally finished the latest season of The Crown, but it seemed pretty depressing to me. I need to check out what’s on better. But, the good news is that I’m finally reading more again and writing reviews.

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    1. I can so relate to two tvs, Kathy. Hubs has the one in the living room, mine is in my office. He's a lot of sci fi, I'm big on Brit shows (which he complains he can't understand the language).

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    2. I totally get this, Kathy and Kait. Unless it's something we decide to watch together, I'm usually watching the TV in the kitchen while I cook and clean up, and hubby is usually on his computer.

      I started The Crown last spring but then never got back to it. Lack of focus...

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  4. I meant to say my husband and I watched the Brad Pitt movie.

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  5. I watched Grantchester and that was it. Now that baseball is on again, Hugh's got the TV most nights and I read elsewhere. But this isn't much of a change for us!

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    1. I did manage to watch a whole baseball game on Saturday night, and Rick even came in and watched the 10th inning with me. (He's the NO Sports guy.)

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  6. We haven't found all the power cables for the TVs so although we finally have cable TV again, we haven't been able to take advantage of it yet. With all the unpacking, we're too tired to last long into a Netflix or Prime show.

    I have promised myself Knives Out, but other than that, I'm looking forward to seeing what's available. Rhys, as a dedicated HGTV watcher - Escape to the Country sounds wonderful! I may have to add Britbox.

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  7. Deb knows this about me. I don't watch TV. This is not from some snooty high ground position about art and mediocrity. I think there's some great stuff on TV these days. I just fell out of the habit when I was working full time away from home, with little opportunity to sit quietly and enjoy a good book, or at least sit quietly and close out all the noise of the world so I could recharge.

    Having tons of time to sit quietly now has only translated into reading more books, and tackling more of my own creative projects. So, please keep writing, my friends. And I promise to find my remote and put fresh batteries in it. I promise.

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    1. Gigi, if you watch nothing else, check out OZARK. It is brilliant. And you and I are possibly the only ones here who have been to the Ozarks. LOL Here I thought it was all peace and quiet and Branson.

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  8. I haven't watched a lot of movies lately. There's not a lot of new ones for obvious reasons. I did see The High Note and while I thought the movie was kind of by the numbers, I did like the chemistry of the two leads playing off of each other.

    An "old" movie that I just watched yesterday was "The Commitments". The director, Alan Parker, died a couple days back and since it was my favorite movie of his, I wanted to pay a kind of tribute by watching it. I hadn't seen it in a while but watching it brought back the same kind of love I felt when I first saw it.

    Since there hasn't been much on other than Grantchester, the far inferior redo of Match Game and the silly but fun Collector's Call, I've been doing rewatches of some shows I love now that my DVD player is back to working properly. I've been checking out Sports Night, NYPD Blue and of course, Firefly as of late.

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    1. Judy, I'm a huge fan of the show and have met four of the actors at conventions.

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    2. O-o-o, do tell! Jay, you've met some interesting people, including most of the Jungle Reds. WOW.
      I own the cd's and could easily watch any time. That show made me a huge fan of Nathan Fillion and so I have all the episodes of Castle, too. But, my mood has been to focus on books. So...

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    3. I love Firefly, too, Jay, and would love to watch it again. I also really like The Rookie, one of the few things I've followed on broadcast TV the last year, so am looking forward to its return. Assuming they are ever able to start filming new seasons.

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    4. Judy,

      I met the actresses who played Inara, Kaylee and River and the actor who played Wash. I almost met the actor who played Jayne but he pulled out of the convention I was going to a couple weeks before it happened.

      I loved Castle a lot as well. But when the backstage drama came to light between the two leads, it kind of took the shine off the series a bit for me. And I hated the last season.

      Deborah, I try to rewatch the Firefly series and the Big Damn Movie (Serenity) at least once a year. I also read all the comics, buy T-shirts, buy reference books and the prose novels that have been put out as well. And I'm in the middle of re-listening to all 10 seasons of the Firefly/Serenity podcast The Signal.

      Oh and I bought the series and movie soundtracks as well as two Firefly related CDs of original music. The first was by Marc Gunn and The Bedlam Bards called 'Firefly Drinking Songs'. The 2nd one was by Gunn alone and it's called 'As Long As I'm Flyin'"

      I've also enjoyed The Rookie and I look forward to the resumption of the series so they can get out of that preposterously bad Season 2 finale 'cliffhanger'.

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  9. Lousy internet means I can't do much streaming at all. I don't really mind except it might be nice to have some idea what people are talking about.

    My PBS station has been replaying all of Last Tango in Halifax and I am so enjoying it. While I did remember the big moments there are so many little ones that I either missed the first time around or they went over my head. So I am liking it even better than I did the first time. Disliking Celia even more.

    I would love to see the old All Creatures Great and Small again.

    One network show I am watching is House. I had forgotten most of them so it is almost like seeing a new show and this time I am paying more attention to the characters as the cases of the week always sounded the same after a while.

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    1. Judi, one show my husband agree on is House. We binge watched it a few years back, and we love it. Maybe it’s time to revisit it.

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  10. Irwin is watching much more tv than I am. He's chosen a couple of streamed shows and he's watching old movies, too. We watch a couple of shows together in the evenings once or twice a week, but since network reruns are into their 3rd or 4th run-through, NCIS is just not worth my time. We have started Grantchester, and we watched all of Midsomer Murders streaming and on PBS, too. But that's been our Friday night treat for years. We watched all of Bosch, very well-done and quite different from the books, which are mixed together to form new story lines. I'll watch the new Endeavor, and together we are watching Hamish McBeth, which is getting darker.

    We have cd's of favorite movies and could binge watch all of those si fi and fantasies if we wanted to. But, we haven't.

    I am mostly reading and that has me very happy. I won't count the books I've read since the pandemic began, but at 2-4 books a week, it is a lot. When I am in the kitchen, which is where my tv is, I am listening to books on Audible instead of tv shows. These stories are taking me away. Perhaps I am feeling the effect of the pandemic more than I've admitted to myself.

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    1. Judy, we watched the first season on Bosch, which I really enjoyed. Maybe we will pick up on the second one.

      I think we are all feeling the effect of the pandemic more than we admit.

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  11. TV is The Hubby's way to unwind, so we watch something every night. The latest was "The Good Place," with Ted Danson, which was TOTALLY not what we expected, but cute and funny nonetheless. There were three seasons and it's kind of a good thing (in our opinion) because the theme was starting to repeat itself.

    Then we have a shleppy, sappy Hallmark series we go back to occasionally (such as last night) called "The Good Witch." Think every Hallmark stereotype possible, throw in a little witchery, and yep, that's the show. Mindless, but sometimes just what you need.

    Up next is the new season of "The Umbrella Academy" on Netflix, which will probably be a little campy (based on the preview), but that's okay.

    We got a new TV over the weekend. 43" 4K UHD. Our old one was 32". Who knew that extra 11" was such a big deal? And UHD? We can practically count the pores on people's faces! LOL

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    1. Ours is 50". Or is it 55"? Anyway it's big, and we do love it. But so much of the time I'm watching on the little 20 in. in the kitchen.

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    2. My sister has a 55". Nice picture, but that's way too big for our living room.

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  12. Deb, Line of Duty only gets better and better. My advice, pay attention. The series draws on information from the first season through all the rest of the show. It is masterfully done.
    Got BritBox for the hubby and are so loving the soothing British shows. Balm for the soul.

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    1. JackieLemon, the cast is terrific. And I love Martin Compston, who plays Steve Arnott. Had no idea he was Scottish until I looked him up. He does a great London accent.

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  13. I never thought I would say this, but I am absolutely tired of all my favorite British TV shows. We have re-watched so many streaming episodes of Midsomer Murders, Vera, Shetland, Death in Paradise, Inspector Lewis, Endeavor...and some not actually British, but we think of them as part of our British experience, like Brokenwood, My Life is Murder, The Mallorca Files, Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries. I love them all, but they are beginning to all look alike to me. I need to introduce some variety!

    On a bright spot, our son joined us last night in watching the first disc of The Fellowship of the Ring. We decided to re-watch our extended-version discs of the whole Lord of the Rings trilogy over a few weeks. Recognizing that none of us have the attention span of normal times, we decided to split them into six, rather than three, parts. It was as wonderful as I remember it!

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    1. Susan, I have been re-watching all the Harry Potter movies (after having re-read and/or listened to all the audio books. Such fun to watch the kids grow up.

      But I would love to watch the LOTR trilogy again.

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    2. Deborah, if you do, make sure it's the extended version--worth seeking out.

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    3. Oh, thanks, Flora. I think we own them on Blu Ray. I will check.

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    4. Judy here. We have the e,tended versions of LOTR trilogy. One year, I watched them over and over. They ate so well done! I've read the books several times, too.
      Deb, Harry Potter is also a great escape, books and films!

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  14. Line of Duty, #3 on my hit chart after Shetland and Vera. Watch from the beginning and pay attention to the random plot threads. It will all make sense by Season Five. They're filming a new season right now.

    After binging on BPL games, we finally watched "Baptiste" which I had recorded on PBS. Fantastic! And then the library coughed up seasons one and two of "The Missing" with Baptiste attempting to locate missing children/people. Same actor plays Baptiste in the prequels.

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    1. I recorded Babtiste but didn't watch them. Maybe I should give them a try.

      And I'll pay attention to Line of Duty. No watching that while doing the dishes lol

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  15. I'm more into books than on TV. I don't subscribe to streaming services.
    Like Rhys, the highlight of my summer is Escape to the Country that comes everyday on CBC ( Canadian broadcast ). I record them so I don't miss them. Visiting UK and fabulous houses, I often think of you Debs and now I'll think of Rhys too.

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  16. Seconding Susan's: "I never thought I would say this, but I am absolutely tired of all my favorite British TV shows." Me too me too me too. But I have discovered Bridgebase... where I can play solitaire games of bridge.

    And I completely love Julia's themed movie weeks. So brilliant. Has me wondering about watching movies WITH family members... we run the on our computer and share screen via Zoom. Has anyone tried that?

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    1. Tell me more about Bridgebase? I used to play bridge on Pogo, with real live people, had several regular partners so we could get our bidding systems down pat. It was great fun, has disappeared now. Was as close to having a foursome in for the evening as I could find, not to mention I didn't have to dust or buy bridge mix or serve drinks, then coffee and some complicated dessert.

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    2. Bridgebase - https://www.bridgebase.com/
      Sign up it's free. I play "casual" games that my brother-in-law sets up. We have a simultaneous 4-way con call on our phones so that we can kibbitz and say our bids and applaud each other's brilliant and not so brilliant plays.
      I also play a solitaire version on my own (the app plays the other hands).
      I can see that you can 'play with others who are also signed in, and I think you rate yourselves in terms of skill. I've not done that.

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  17. We've really been enjoying Good Fight. We don't have the CBS streaming channel but found we could get it on disc from Netflix. Terrific cast (yay, Christine Baranski!) and smart, interesting writing. Great fun. And I am enjoying re-runs of Last Tango in Halifax. Even when the storylines veer into soap IMHO it is so interesting, the characters are so well drawn and well acted. Joining in the crowd saying can't wait for the new season. I thought Beecham House was over-the-top historical drama, the kind I wouldn't bother reading but enjoyed watching. Complete escape plus bonus: gorgeous to look at. Just learned that after ending on a MAJOR cliffhanger there will not be another season! Oh, well, I'll just have to make up the rest, I guess. :-)

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  18. During this pandemic, I want hilarity. And I found it in Derry Girls on Netflix. I highly, highly recommend it if you want to laugh. My friends watch it with subtitles since they have trouble with the Northern Irish accent. And a key is to know that "boke" is both a noun and verb for vomit.
    I kid you not - you will laugh out loud.

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    1. Oooh, thanks for the reminder. I meant to start this.Heard it is great.

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    2. I will definitely check this out!!!

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    3. Loved Derry Girls! Also, Raised By Wolves (on Acorn TV) which I had to keep rewinding because I was laughing so much. Acorn and Britbox are my lifeline right now.

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  19. No TV here--and satellite internet--so no streaming anything, no cable. So there're dvds from the library or my collection--except I have the attention span of a gnat right now. Early in the pandemic I watched all of the Joan Hickson Miss Marples and loved them. But now I'm trying to watch the Tuppence and Tommy movies and about 20 minutes is all I can manage before I turn it off. Reading is the same. I have managed to get through some books--like Hid From Our Eyes, the latest Kathy Reich--series I love--but still can't sit for long. Taking Rhys's suggestion from earlier this summer--sometimes I can escape into old favorites. Honestly, right now feeling accomplished if I can keep the laundry done, the animals cared for, and the house reasonably clean.

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    1. Yes, me too on all those things, Flora. But it would be nice if I could actually get some writing done, too...

      How was the Kathy Reichs, by the way?

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    2. I hate to say that I skipped to the end, then went back and read bits and pieces--that's how bad my concentration has become.

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  20. As many of you know, I read in bed from 8 until about 11 every night. So most of the TV watching is either in the afternoon -- binging Schitt$ Creek, starting the last season -- or between 5-8, when we watch the news, reruns of Jeopardy and Bing Bang Theory, and then the evening binge, going to start The Nest on Acorn tonight.

    If you're missing All Creatures Great and Small, try the Yorkshire Vet. Same location although nothing will ever be as good as the original. Even though there's not a lot new coming out, there are so many shows and programs I missed, and even more I've forgotten, that I'll never lack for entertainment. Back to Schitt$ Creek, absolutely brilliant. Eugene Levy and Daniel Levy are the creators and stars, and it brings back Christopher Guest movies, another thing to binge on.

    Subtitles are de rigueur in this household, for all Acorn and Britbox shows. Australian English I can understand.

    For bawdy laughs, don't miss QI on Britbox, both with Stephen Fry and later with Sandi Toksvig. Funniest show ever, especially when you're feeling down.

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    1. Thanks, Ann. I have Britbox, and I always watch QI when I'm in the UK but never think to here. You'd think with Britbox and Acorn I would never run out of things to watch, but it's really been a problem of attention span. And of finding things that we can watch together on our weekend TV nights.

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    2. This attention span thing. Another covid related issue.

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  21. A second vote here for Derry Girls, including watching in closed caption. I popped it on after several...what the heck did she just say?!?

    The show No Offence (and yes, my fellow Americans, that's how the title is spelled!) is greatness. I watched it through Apple TV, but maybe Acorn...Or Acorn on Apple TV. I found it somewhere! Very female positive. The boss lady is a woman of normal middle-aged size and they have no problem showing her normal middle-aged size in the flesh (with pertinent bits covered!). A vigorous towel off in the locker room while giving her boss an update is not to be missed! A women that size in a scene like that would never be shown on an American show. I love her/their courage to let it all (mostly) hang out!

    And if you're a dog lover, or even if you're not, The Dog House: UK on HBO is not to be missed. So much fun, and such a simple heartwarming need in these non-stop troubled times. I dare you not to get teary-eyed!

    Nancy

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  22. Lately I discovered Indian Matchmaking on Netflix and devoured it in two days. It's a very entertaining documentary series centering around a Mumbai matchmaker and her clients, both in India and other places including the US. Some of the clients are endearing and others are absolutely annoying. Also watched Love on the Spectrum on Netflix, about helping people on the autism spectrum improve their dating skills. And I just started Anne with an E, the latest Anne of Green Gables series, which has completed 3 seasons and was cancelled but may be revived for a fourth season. I've started Call the Midwife and am enjoying it, but I didn't expect it to be that intense!

    I also watched some sappier series, such as Sweet Magnolias and The Baby Sitters Club (although I was too old for the books) and enjoyed them. I'm happy to hear Sweet Magnolias will get a second season.

    I have become obsessed with two game shows--The Chase and Masterminds, both hosted by Brooke Burns on the Game Show Network. The Chase only ran for two years (2013-2015), and the episodes are one hour long, but versions of it are still going strong in the UK (I believe) and Australia, neither of which I can get on my TV. However, the latest news is that it's being revived here and the producers are in talks with Ken Jennings, James Holzhauer and Brad Rutter of Jeopardy fame to be the "chasers." What I like about these shows is that the questions can be as difficult as those on Jeopardy.

    I'm really looking forward to the new seasons of Last Tango in Halifax, Grace and Frankie, and The Good Place on Netflix, and thanks to your suggestions, I will look for All Creatures Great and Small (absolutely loved it the first time around), Derry Girls, and others.

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    1. Margie, The Baby Sitters Club has been getting really good reviews.

      And I've just read that there is going to be a new version of All Creatures coming next winter! I have mixed feelings about this. They are such great stories that it will be wonderful to introduce them to a new generation. On the other hand, the original writing and casting was so terrific. I'm not sure anyone can replace Christopher Timothy, Robert Hardy, and Peter Davison. And I loved Carol Drinkwater as Helen.

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  23. Julia's attention span is twice as long as mine these days. Sad.

    I, too, OD'd on drama series. 21 seasons of Midsomer Murders no doubt pushed me over that edge. Steve has been watching weird, mostly war-based movies on Netflix, thanks to the algorithms that push recommendations based on past watching. My recommendations are so different, so I don't see his, thank goodness. One that kept coming up for me was the Netflix series, Anne With an E, and I finally sat down to watch the first episode. It is SO charming, and a refreshing change from dark dramas. Even Steve has enjoyed it with me. I highly recommend it as a shot of hope and delight.

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    1. Karen, I too envy Julia’s attention span. A neighbor used to say her (then five year old) daughter had the attention span of a gnat. How good it be if I could pay attention for that long! Happy Monday! It IS Monday??

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  24. Julia's post about themed movie weeks really inspired us. We are doing it once a week, three movies per theme, so each person picks one. My alien encounters pick was "Arrival." Next theme is animation, which is tough since we've seen a ton of them.

    For TV the hubs and I have been watching "Elementary," which has the parts Debs described above--self-contained episodes (mostly) within a larger arc focused on the development of Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson.

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    1. Ooh, my husband and I used to LOVE "Elementary." I need to go look that up! Thanks for the tip.

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    2. My daughter has watched every single episode multiple times. I liked it too but never kept up that well. So that's a thought!

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    3. Trisha, have you seen The Iron Giant? An oldie but goodie for animation.

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  25. Love the themed weeks, Julia. Brilliant. And, Rhys, I love Brit Box and Acorn!

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  26. Late to the party again! Sorry! I was up late last night reading JANE EYRE. Can you believe it is the first time I have read a Bronte novel?

    Binging on streaming TV? I watched MADAM SECRETARY on Netflix. There are some scary scenes, though overall it is an excellent show. I bought a rental of a movie that I would have seen in the theater if we did Not have the pandemic. Since I love Foreign Films with English subtitles, I decided to see the new French movie with Catherine Denevue, Ethan Hawke and Juliette Binoche. I liked it. Very good cast. I saw the DOWNTON ABBEY movie on my computer. We bought the movie and downloaded it.

    LOVE Britbox! I've been watching Miss Marple with Joan Hickson. I plan to watch FAWLTY TOWERS. I also love Acorn TV.

    Love SHAKESPEARE AND HATHAWAY. QUEENS OF MYSTERY. VERA. MIDSOMMER MURDERS. AT HOME WITH GEORGIANS.

    On Netflix, I watched the BABYSITTERS CLUB and loved it. I want to see more episodes. Can you believe that Alicia Silverstone from CLUELESS is now a Mom on the Babysitters Club series?

    Planning to watch the GREAT BRITISH BAKING SHOW. I think they have ESCAPE TO THE COUNTRY on either Britbox or Acorn TV. I want to see that programme too.

    On another note, I wonder if they will show the new documentary about Princess Anne on Acorn TV or Britbox?

    During this pandemic, I have been reading a lot of books. Even when I watch a movie or streaming TV, I am still reading the dialogue with the English subtitles / captions.

    Diana

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    1. Diana, I love Shakespeare and Hathaway, too!

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    2. Deborah, wonderful to know that I am not the only one who likes that show.

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  27. I don't watch much TV, but I discovered Grace and Frankie this summer and I love it. Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin are wonderful in it.

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    1. Kathy, Grace and Frankie is another favorite from Netflix.

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  28. Some friends and I are rewatching Once Upon a Time. We are doing three episodes a week and commenting as we watch on a Facebook thread.

    I've turned my Saturday nights into Mary Tyler Moore night, and I'm watching 4 episodes of the classic sitcom every week. I haven't watched the show in years despite having the DVD's, so I'm enjoying it.

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  29. This is Teri Soares. For some reason I’m unable to comment through Blogger lately, so You’ll see me as Anonymous which is appropriate, since I’m a woman and we all know that Anonymous was a woman. Anyway, I’ve introduced my husband to the series Parks and Recreation with Amy Poehler and he’s enjoying it for the most part. He usually watches documentaries about serial killers and I prefer British mysteries. He is constantly rewatching The Wire which I have never watched in its entirety and I don’t think I ever will. We also watch the new HBO series Perry Mason which is dark but beautifully filmed. Take care, everyone! Teri Soares

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  30. And it worked on blogger. 🙄 Hooray!

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  31. Lately I can't get interested in movies for some reason, so I've been watching a lot of podcasts and documentaries. If my favorite series ever get another season in the box I will be watching Vera, Brokenwood, Shetland, etc again.

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  32. We are really late to the party--watching Outlander which has 42 episodes, I think. I'm also reading Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series. We gave up on Ozark which seemed so repetitive. I go to Acorn TV for British comfort shows like the one Rhys mentioned along with other British documentaries. I record Death in Paradise every Thursday on PBS. I'm ready for new season of Endeavour, too!

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  33. I'm intrigued by all the praise for Last Tango in Halifax. We enjoyed it at first, but then found the characters/storyline to wear really thin and quit.
    I very much hope they make more Brokenwood--well written with an excellent ensemble cast.
    My Life Is Murder is entertaining. Also no word as to whether or not they will renew it.
    Have you seen Kingdom with Stephen Fry? Only 3 seasons and some major story bits are left unanswered, but nicely done.

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    1. Kingdom was so good! I binge watched it when I was stuck immobile after breaking three ribs several years ago.

      And Brokenwood, too.

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  34. In The Dark on Netflix. I just happened upon this series last year. It is so good.

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  35. Love Grace and Frankie. My husband and I have watched the entire Longmire series several times. Re watched Downton Abby and Doc Martin. Madam Secretary is also high on my list. Just starting to get into Midsummer Murders. Helps to have Netflix and Amazon Prime, as network TV is pathetic right now

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  36. For fans of the original All Creatures Great and Small, Acorn has a delightful series called Vintage Roads Great & Small. It stars Christopher Timothy and Peter Davison taking road trips in 1930’s vintage cars, reminiscing, and just carrying on. I live it!

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    1. Love it. Wish I could live it.

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    2. Thank you, Pat!!! You bet I'm watching this one!!!

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  37. Don't forget The Good Place, if you havent seen it. But start from the beginning, very important, and persevere.

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    1. I'm with Hank! You will LOVE The Good Place. It's just four seasons long with I believe 13 episodes each season. But it is important to start from the very beginning.

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  38. Months ago a friend suggested "Escape to the Country". I found episodes on Youtube. You can also specify a particular county. It is great!

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    1. Great! Thank you, Pam! I'll will look up England!

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