The Get Down – NETFLIX – 2016

The birth of Hip-Hop in the disco era?  Sure this will be interesting to some but not to the masses…right? Maybe to those from the Bronx that experieced it..but that’s it..right? Wait…what?  Baz Luhrmann is attached to the project….take all the money you need to produce this soon to be work of art.  It truly is that… a work of art. Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge) takes his brilliant story telling with integration of music right at the right time and takes this historical drama into more than a retrospective of the birth of Hip-Hop and turns it into an Everyman tale about coming out of the ashes like a Phoenix.

The story centers around Ezekiel (Justice Smith) who is a talented poet and is seeking a way to showcase his talent to verbalize his words. He meets Shaolin (Shameik Moore) a Padawan DJ, and together with the Get Down crew become legends.

I am usually leery of music shows claiming that the stars have talent and the music is awesome when at best it is usually mediocre lowering audience talent expectations across the world; but The Get Down has the talent with the rhymes, the beat, and the sound…it’s all good.

Netflix is doing something new and releasing 1/2 a season now and the other half in early 2017.  I love that the first half felt like a whole story, a 7 hour movie for those who binge watch..I cannot wait for part 2.

Grade: A+

Gotham

What defines us?  What turns us into what we become?  Fox’s Gotham is a show to answer these question for the Detective Comic’s most famous dark knight’s town.  Gotham is the origin story of Batman seen through the eyes of new detective James Gordon(Ben McKenzie).  If you are in the know of Batman lore, Gordon becomes the commissioner of Gotham and Batman’s biggest allie.  I am a big Batman fan since the mid 80’s having read many of the comics growing up and keeping up from time to time as an adult.  I know the origins of most of the character’s from all of the Batman comics and variations from each as well.  I think it will be fun to see it from this vantage point so young in Batman’s life.

The show’s pilot starts with the murder of Bruce Wayne’s parents after attending a movie.  The director of the pilot episode, Danny Cannon, captured many iconic images straight from the comics.  For example the pearls that fall to the ground during the death and robbery of the Waynes along with the image of Bruce kneeling in the middle of his fallen parents are classic to the comics and were almost identical in the pilot episode of Gotham.

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I am excited to see where all this leads and the routes that each character takes to become who they become.  I will not miss an episode of this fantastic show.

Grade: A+

Forever

240.16x9What if you were immortal?  Would it matter to you if those around were not?  Dr. Henry Morgan
played by Ioan Gruffudd is indeed immortal and has been around for 300 or so years and has seen and has gone through death a lot.  Every time he dies he wakes up in a body of water…naked.

Judd Hirsh back from the days of Taxi plays his sidekick Abe and when I learned what their relationship in the show is(you’re going to have to watch it…I will not give it away here) that is when I said this is a show I am going to watch.  I love smart writing and interesting character relationships.  Gruffudd’s character is a coroner or some sort of post mortem body examiner.  He meets detective Jo Martinez
played by Alana De La Garza when he is involved in a case where a subway train conductor dies. He is treated as a suspect and proves much like Sherlock Holmes that he is not the murderer.

Throughout the pilot we learned a little about the character’s life and lost love.  It plays with the idea of immortality being so great but you still feel pain both physical and emotional.  I cannot wait for this show to officially premiere and other episodes to come out.  You can watch it on Hulu or you can wait and with it on ABC on TUE SEPT 23 10|9c.  I will be watching it again, and if you know me you know I never watch anything twice.

Grade: A+

Louie Season 4:1 & 2

Comedian Louie C.K. is my hero.  He has taken the entertainment business, that says you need to follow these rules and has said that ‘s nice but I want to do it this way…and he is getting away with it.  Why?  His work is art.  He takes his sitcom out of the normal paradigm and doesn’t settle for trite.  The first episode has a great scene with Charles Grodin that makes the audience wait along with Louie for him to finish his lunch before he can be engaged in conversation.  (It was great to see Grodin again.) The second episode features Jerry Seinfeld and Yvonne Stahovski (who also premieres the sam night in Fox’s 24) and just to land a joke about how the rich keep getting richer off the poor.  This episode really is what Louie is all about.  He puts his own work out there without the rich middle men taking their 99% of the show.  I wonder how much longer it will be before Louie is one of them?

Grade: A+

24:Live Another Day Episode 1

Jack Bauer is back and he’s wanted.  He rescues Cloe from the US Government in London while the the President is there as well meeting with the Prime Minister about the use of drones.  A drone pilot is accused of killing 2 American troops and 2 British troops, Jack knows who is the real culprit and will do whatever it takes to bring them to justice and save the President, who is also the father of the woman he loves.  This is why I love this show.  Years of action put into 24 hours, well 12 in this season’s case.  My wife calls this the ulcer show, because it never lets you stop worrying about Jack.  I call it exciting and fun.

Grade: A+