Six Television Shows I’m Watching Right Now

Well. Not right now, as in this instant.

Never mind.

As a budding writing professional, my life is full to the brim with trying to get around to writing. I am actually productive for at least part of the day, but I spend a larger chunk than I’d prefer in the limbo state of just-about-to-start.

Because of this, I only have enough room in my free time for a limited selection of television programming. I’ve cut shows that I just didn’t care enough about to keep up watching, so the shows that remain must have some semblance of value (to me, at least).

Here are the shows that are currently occupying my mental space.

COMMUNITY

Community is one of those shows that you either get or don’t get. When it first started, I didn’t get it, and therefore it dropped off my radar.

Then, years later, I watched three seasons of the show in about two weeks of time. Something clicked, and I quite enjoy the show now. (Is it a coincidence that, in that intervening time, I attended a community college? Yes, I believe that is pure coincidence.)

It is in its fifth season and therefore beyond the realm of possibility that students as basically competent as the show’s main characters could still need further ‘educating.’ The writers have managed to give a reason for the characters to still be there, and the transition of Jeff to the role of teacher was brilliant.

GRIMM

I started Grimm without expecting much. It looked like it might be a fun show to see run itself into the ground. But no, somehow they have managed to keep it (relatively) fresh and entertaining.

Some may find him bland, but I like Nick as the lead of the show, and the supporting characters tend to have a depth actually explored over the course of the seasons. Some of the subplots are stretched rather thin, but at least I. Sort of care enough to see where it goes.

SLEEPY HOLLOW

My wife and I came upon this show late, but in time to catch the pilot episode. The misadventures of a time traveling (or rather time displaced) Colonial turncoat may not seem like a winning concept, but the actor depicting Crane offers just enough charm, mixed with just enough British reserve, to keep our collective interest.

I wish the show would decide on what it wishes to focus, as the overarching goal seems to change with every episode. Also, plot lines seem to show up in the middle of episodes, especially related to character development, and never resolved, a habit that is growing frustrating to me. Perhaps the writers are doing this on purpose, but the sorts of questions they leave unanswered makes it feel more like sloppy writing / poor time management than pre-planned glimpses into the characters’ lives.

AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.

Honestly, I’m just watching this because it’s a family event (we watch it with my dad), and… that’s basically it.

The show has somewhat failed to present compelling characters and the writers don’t seem to realize that as they try to create tension that, for me, falls flat.

Maybe it will turn out to be the coolest thing ever, but the only way I see that happening is for the writers and producers to loose the reins, to let the team interact with the greater Marvel universe rather than seem to be tied down to the movie franchises.

THE BLACKLIST

This one, I’m not really sure what to think.

James Spader as brainiac super slick criminal Red Reddington seems to oscillate between sly manipulator and kid-with-a-magnifying-class nuts. He almost works as a character, but I need to see more from him to believe that he’s as bad (and as good) as everyone else in the cast seems to view him.

I like the tension, I am intrigued by the overall mystery, as this show builds sympathy for the characters in ways that S.H.I.E.L.D. has so far failed to do. (Obviously, these are very different genres, but I think something could be learned from The Blacklist.)

The overarching conspiracy seems intricate and well thought out, so I hope I won’t be disappointed when we find out what’s really going on.

ALMOST HUMAN

I’ve been sort of a closet that-guy-Karl-Urban fan for a few years now, after he finally passed into my consciousness as a name in THE CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK. I know that movie is much maligned, but his Lord Vaako was just badass (even in the silly costume). I mean, anyone who can take a role, married to what’s-her-snakey-lady and keep a straight face has some acting chops. (Yes, his turn in the STAR TREK reboot has been quite enjoyed in this household as well.)

In this show, though? He’s kinda meh. Not bad, but it feels like Detective John Kennex is not stretching the bounds of the actor’s abilities. Kennex is kind of a douche, and might need to learn to “save the cat” sometime in the near future before he leaves audiences behind (or before they leave him).

Dorian, on the other hand, is quite adorable (and I say this with all of my masculinity in check). There’s something about the way he interacts with that world that is rather charming. Dorian helps carry us through each episode and his actor manages to capture those moments when he’s a little more machine than man.

Perhaps the show intends to imply that Kennex is more robotic than Dorian, with his singleminded approach to his police work, but I’m not sure they’re doing it on purpose.

Either way, it’s promising — and has a decent supporting cast — so we’re sticking with it, for now.

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So, there you have it.

What shows am I missing out on? I don’t have a lot of room for something new, but a strong enough recommendation might sway me to add one or two to the stable.

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