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Quality television series

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...lately there is really good stuff out there...


My Top 4 at the moment of series i currently watch or looking forward for the next season


4. True Blood (Vampires never been better)

3. Game of Thrones (took me a while but now i am hooked, Lord of the Rings with a bad ass imp instead of hobbits)

2. Walking Dead (never thought zombies could catch my attention)

1. Mad Men (I have no clear idea why, but this is just the one for some reason i enjoy the most, there is something about the 60s wen political correctness didnt exist)


...I looked up and several shows i havent seen like Board Walk Empire, Boss and The Killing seems to be just as good, anyone followed them?


whats your top pick right now?

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I'd have to go with Game of Thrones also, and South Park will always have a special place in my heart. Even my dad who's almost 60, and a highly educated and nationally renowned doctor likes South Park. LOL Sure, when it first started most of it was just toilet humor, but after season 2 it really started to blossom into the show it is today, full of side-splitting dark humor, and meaningful social and political criticism. It's one of those shows that bridges the generation gap too. My little brother is 13 and he loves it, and so do his teachers at school.

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Reno 911 - This unpolished satire/comedy series had both sublime and ridiculous moments, unlike the movie which was awful. It's easy to satirize authority figures, but they also hit the nail on the head on satirizing some of the dummies police have to babysit everyday (their workmates, the offenders, and especially halfwitted 911 callers). I hope this was seen and could be appreciated in Europe - I saw a German promo for it, but I think it made bad news in the UK where some young folks would dial 911 for help rather than 999 or whatever is used there.


The First 48 - Homicide investigation reality show with clever dual interwoven thread format, well suited to an attention span that benefits from refreshing more than once an hour. However over the years it has become a grind within just the most dysfunctional neighborhoods where the same swaggering teenage boys gun down each other. They are too-sentimentally depicted as "trying to get their life together" as a dope-dealing absentee father to numerous welfare mothers. I have visited some of these neighborhoods decades ago and found their parents and grandparents living lots more responsibly under harder economic conditions and less opportunities.


For a change of pace from subcultures extolling self destruction, I sample Alaskan State Troopers where at least the tattoos and thug regalia are covered by down jackets. Drugs, alcohol, and violence (at least against wild animals) seems common there too, but overall must be the exception because statistics show violence downtrending in the US and world.


Perry Mason the original 9 seasons of black and white series from 50+ years ago is back on ME and Hallmark cable channels. I watch it for the lost world of my parents it depicts - the way people strived to act as (or at least appear as) respectable with upward aspirations. It seems there was a lot of blackmail on those falling short, on issues we would laugh about today. Interesting court tactics and situations from a not altogether worse era. Series actually benefits from crude editing to allow more commercials - the chopped versions have more mystery than the full length ones which can seem hokey when you know too much.


Backpack Travels This South Korean travelogue show with subtitles seems the last hurrah of conventional travel series. Alternatives seem jaded and gimmicky, such as dwelling on the novelty of eating unfamiliar animal body parts. For an hour an amateur cameraman blunders into a usually exotic locale. You may cringe to see what a polite yet assertive Asian can get away with ("I from Korea, let me film life in your harem"). Recaptures old fashioned travelers thrill of discovery, but can really garble up historical and political facts.


House Hunters Intnl - on every weekday on HGTV channel so it must be popular. The good part is the couple minutes where they show settings of the move destination - tourist and lesser known sights. The bad part is these 2 minutes are broken into about 200 split second vignettes which you have to fight your recorder to freeze frame, in order to recall if you have been there or should have. Also the blather by lucky idiots making the move, which you just hope is fake for dramatic effect because of so much whining about the destination not offering what they are used to at home.


Strangely addictive reality shows, maybe due to the actual cast because each of these shows have multiple clones that stink: Wheeler Dealers, Chasing Classic Cars, Pawn Stars, Auction Hunters, Storage Wars, Swamp People, Swamp Loggers. I don't sit like a potato and watch these live, but efficiently slurp new episodes into a digital recorder for viewinhg pretty quickly, usually skipping commercials. I was TV/cable free a decade ago but now watch too much, maybe to justify spiraling cable costs. I've heard cableTV is getting undercut by internet streaming alternatives, so I may be able to say goodbye this racket in time (unless they go back to providing Roman documentaries).

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Here I don't open the TV very often, using the web to get most of the few programs I do indeed look at. Those include : NCIS and it's derivative NCIS:LA, definitively not roman. House MD is also on the list, at least until the end of this season which will close down the diminishing show. Then there are The Borgias (the US version, not the European, altough the second one is said to be better both in quality of play and historicity) and Game of Throne. Last year I did also watch the rather mediocre Camelot (the US serie, not the quite funny french short format comedy serie). Last but not least, I wait to know wheter or not a new season of the science-fiction Sanctuary will come back.


For more cultural programs, I mainly look at Des Racines et des Ailes, once every two weeks on France 3 channel, a mostly fine discovery of nice places and tastes from a part of the world or, simply, of France, with a lot of interest for peoples restauring old houses/castles/monnuments and preserving traditions (be it local music, food, wine, beer, building tradition, ...). One is amazed at how rich France's past is, how different the traditions of every place, and how much it's inhabitant try to keep it, far from what seems to be the case in Italy for example, although the show has also lots of episodes on italian noble families restauring their palaces and villas... They've also had fantastic shows on Syria for instance. On the other hand Spain has not been visited very often, nor has the UK. It is in part due to the fact they like the locals to speak in french, most of their contacts being through french cultural circles.

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TV at the moment is just brilliant lately, absolutely love the shows mentioned by Viggen apart from Mad Men, I just never got round to watching it although I am quite fond of Christina Hendricks!!


A few more that I am trying to keep up with are Alcatraz, just seen the first two episodes so far but it looks promising. Fringe, been watching this since the beginning, love it. Blue Bloods, Tom Sellecks tash is legendary!. Touch, now this show has got some real promise. Homeland, my current favorite show, edge of the seat stuff. The Vampire Diaries, my guilty pleasure!.



But probably the best show I've seen in a long long time is Romanzo Criminale, if you haven't seen this then you have seriously got to get on it. It's a Italian speaking show, subtitled, set in Rome in the 70's, imagine The Soprano's but with flares! Just brilliant!

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My favorite now is Game of Thrones, a perfect escapist pleasure. The Borgias is also really good.

I also like zombies (The Walking Dead) and vampires (Vampire Diaries). The only sitcom I watch is The Big Bang Theory.

I also enjoy The Killing and the new series Awake and House of Lies.

Fringe is nice, but I feel they jumped the shark in the last season. I gave up on Alcatraz because it became too repetitive.

I sometimes watch Top Gear (UK version of course).

That's a lot of Tv programs for someone without a TV.

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