Telly

Saw a trailer for the new season of Doctor Who last night. It looked rather nifty, with a couple of moments that made me wince slightly. So same as always, then. 🙂 It’s on the website too.

I’m not a massive fan of the Mission: Impossible movies, though the first one had its moments, but I get nostalgic about the TV show. So I’m heartened to read in this interview with JJ Abrams (he of Alias fame) that he’s written the third film to be more like the TV show:

“The fun of “Mission: Impossible” was always the teamwork. One of the beautiful things in this movie is that we’ve got Maggie Q, Ving Rhames, Laurence Fishburne, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Billy Crudup, Keri Russell, Simon Pegg … this credible supporting cast. The teamwork, for me, was always the greatest part of the “Mission” TV series. And in “Mission I” and “II” — with some exceptions in “Mission I” — they’ve really been Ethan-Hunt-as-spy movies.”

It’s exactly what I need to hear to move me from apathy into active interest in the film, especially since the trailer was pretty uninspiring. Also he talks about an iconic piece of background music from the TV show (not the main theme) that he’s insisted they work into the film. I think I can picture the music he means, and it should be great.

CSI:NY last night featured a plot about a writer that, even as I look back on it, was the least plausible thing ever. And a plot about rollerskating that, even as I look back on it, was the second least plausible thing ever. However I did catch most of the pilot of NCIS beforehand, which was a great deal more engaging – even if ultimately not very, y’know, plausible (freakishly it’s a Donald P Bellisario show, the first I’ve seen since Airwolf, and his company logo at the end is still exactly the same! Ah, nostalgia…) The original CSI remains better than the rest of ’em by some margin.

Another show riffing on the same basic genre is Bones. We didn’t watch this for ages, but have started catching up with it: it’s oddly clunky but quite endearing, and the two leads work well together. Boreanaz is basically called upon to be laconic and long-suffering with every fibre of his being, and fortunately that’s well within his comfort zone. We’ve only seen the first few episodes, so the show is still in the painful early stage where the characters feel the need to explain their backstory to one another on a ten minute rotation. Also it has a 3D holographic display which does realtime simulations of things in the most ridiculous detail. But we’ll overlook that because it’s that kind of show.

And House continues to be massively entertaining and funnier than most comedies, if slightly less plausible than all of the above shows put together. But it doesn’t matter because it’s that kind of show. It’s like there are two kinds of television – the quality kind where I actually care when it’s crap, and the potboiler kind that amiably passes the time which can get away with all sorts of liberties1. With House the characters are king, and if the plot happens to be a formulaic mass of contrivance, illogic and bad science well, er – look! Hugh Laurie!

1 I suspect that Doctor Who has one foot in each camp.

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