Comencé en ésto de blogger con 16 años pero no le di vidilla al blog hasta los 18 tras empezar la universidad. En un principio sólo hubo cabida para series pero luego expandí la temática a todo aquello que tuviera un mínimo de guión/ficción; ¡hasta la propia vida, señoras! Decía Susan Sontag: "En las buenas películas, existe siempre una espontaneidad que nos libera por entero de la ansiedad por interpretar". Bienvenidas. Contacto: oscarrusvicente@gmail.com

miércoles, 26 de noviembre de 2014

How to get away with sloppy scripts

Don't you happen that sometimes you are unable to quit tv-shows despite their low quality? There are a lot of reasons to keep watching them: but, are they actually rational? I have found myself lately in a crossroad with some US tv-series: Homeland (Showtime), Sleepy Hollow (FOX) and How to Get Away with Murder (ABC). Are they worth it? Am I wasting my time in addressing my appointments with them weekly?

From here to the end, be aware of galore spoilers | Let's start with the elder one: Homeland. Hype and backlash could be the most suitable nouns to define its run which began in 2011-Oh My God!, It feels so much time ahead- hitting the fandom; the "fault" was in the plausible dynamic of two explosive and self-destructive characters: a bipolar CIA female agent and a Marine male who has been in captivity in Iraq for eight years until he is set free. A cat-and-mouse-game which involved so many people. And countries. Ambiguity in its exponent. During the first season and half of the second one, you could never predict the morality, sides and movements of this deathly duet. Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) and Nicholas Brodry (Damian Lewis), despite gossips about their bad relationship, were the heart of the show due to their chemistry on the screen. But then all the cliffhangers and game-changers drove to audience's tiredom; we needed a resolution to the mess the writers have created (who said Dana Brodry?) and if Showtime wanted more seasons ($), this mess-up-affaire needed to be ended and they opted to the disappearance, redemption and death of the male character. This movement was the own tv-series' redemption and gave the audience a vehement final stretch during its third season. That season finale could have work perfectly as a series finale with a pregnant Carrie drawing THAT star. Ok, the script was still suffering from vagueness but it had got rid of useless story lines and characters. The fourth season thus promised a kind of reboot with the same afflicted and old characters we have been knowing these years but, oh boy!, I got tired of crazy-eyes doing crazy things and being an asshole. Saul's rapture, Aayan's death and Dennis Boyd as a traitor amateur spy were the straw that broke the camel's back but then the writers cheated on us again with bringing Brody back to live in Carrie's hallucination due to the change of pills from Iranians. They earnt me. Homeland could be about The War on Terror (It is indeed in its soapy way) but from my point of view It's all about betrayals. How many times Carrie and Saul have lied each other during these four seasons? One thing is sure: the bets are on Saul being the next corpse. And that would be the best thing to do: turning Carrie into a black widow. She's already the drone queen.

The next one to puke talk about is Sleepy Hollow, a supernatural thriller which became the last season's suprise hit. Unlike Homeland whose hit was predicted, this kind of remake-reboot-whatever of Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow (id, 1999) was fated for failure because of two main things: the slamp (in terms of ratings and quality) of FOX and that crazy bananas premise which mixes sci-fi, fantasy, adventure, drama and... soap-opera. Icabod Crane (played by handsome Tom Mison) is resurrected and teams up with Abbie Mills, a policewoman (one of my favourites female characters indeed; played by tiny-tiny Nicole Beharie) to investigate a killing spree that was instigated by the Headless Horseman who has also returned from the 18th century to modern day. Summing-up for dummies? The US Civil War was actually Apocalypse's advent. Deal with it. But.. when did everything fall down? In my opinion the big twist revealing that the Sin Eater (a.ka. Henrry Parish; played by Walter Bishop John Noble) was Ichabod and Katrina's son and the Horseman of War was the turning point in the worst and soapy way. An abandoned and secret birthed infant who was seeking for revenge. But It was not the first time during those 13 episodes uniting family ties between the good and the bad ones: what about the identity of the Headless Horseman? Touché. Second seasons are fireproof and for the moment Sleepy Hollow is wet and stagnated in a procedural scheme (*) and useless (Katrina, Abraham), misused (Jenny, Frank) or new characters (Reyes, Hawley) as pawns of the kings of the show: Icabod and Abbie. They must get laid.

(*) I am OK with the "Monster Of The Week" as a fan of Fringe but I am not OK with the repetitive scenes of Henrry making the pasterful plan, Katrina playing spies and Ichabod learning how horrendous modern world is. In fact, where is the kindred? Why have the writers decided to push Hawley as a sexy love interest for Abie in such a lazy and predictable movement? 

And the last but no leastHow to Get Away with Murder. In this case, its great hit has been endorsed by Shondaland, responsible of other hits such as Grey's Anatomy or Scandal, and having the overrated Viola Davis as Annalise Keating, the leading character. First of all; does anyone buy the premise? It's even crazier than Sleepy Hollow's but with such a ridiculous solemnity that I am unable to believe it. Dumb characters doing dumber things when they are supposed to be the smartest guys in law. The use of flashforwards blushes me and personally they provoke me less intrigue than if the writers would have decided to tell the story with no jumps in time. Obviously you can decieve the viewer (that's the tricky funny thing!) but you have to do it right because if the audience catches you a lie, you are lost. As in Christopher Nolan's films. But the narrative structure (appealing at first, dull then) is not its low point: It's their characters. I do not care about none of them because they all are well-dressed clichés. Even the gay character, Connor (played by hot Jack Falahee), is too unbelievably gay and his geek Chinese romance is badly built so when drama comes, I do not give a shit about it. The climaxes are poor. There are some fun-ny characters as Michaela, Asher or even Bonnie (I bet she is Lyla's murderer or the mysterious man who approached her in the bar in the 9th episode) but the show is more focus in stupid affairs as Wes and Rebecca's (It would have been interesting if she had been the murderer of Sam or Lyla but I think the writers have decided to turn her into the victim of a conspiracy) or Laurel and Frank's (the horniest ones). I do not like the idea of Wes being the bad cop as a puppet of Annalise. Easy cliffhangers are the worst dodge in fiction but I understand that the broadcast ABC has to endure the high ratings and turn its Thursday night timeslot into an event that nobody can miss if they want to talk about it the next day without scandalizing about a pile of spoilers.

One thing in common is the leadership of strong female characters in modern tv-series despite their moral defects (and mental...) so that It is actually a smart and irreproachable move.