Television Show Review: The Americans: Season 5

The Americans Season 5

The Americans: Season 5 created by Joseph Weisberg (FX, Amblin Television, DreamWorks Television) Starring Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys, Keidrich Sellati, Holly Taylor, Noah Emmerich, Costa Ronin, Brandon J. Dirden, Frank Langella, Kelly AuCoin, and Margo Martindale. The Whole World Is Talking ‘Bout Russia Quick. Open a tab in your browser and navigate to your preferred news source. For those in the present—can’t say how long this site will last—the headlines of your online periodical will meet one of two criteria. The mainstream and liberal sources likely have an article about Donald Trump’s ties to Russia. The conservative sites? They are likely talking about the deep state and conspiracies spun around Russia to discredit Trump. The common denominator? Russia. Given this… Read More →

Television Show Review: Atlanta: Season 1

Atlanta Season 1

Atlanta: Season 1 created by Donald Glover (FX Productions) Starring Donald Glover, Brian Tyree Henry, Keith Stanfield, and Zazie Beetz. #OscarsSoWhite Last year’s Oscar nominees commenced a necessary conversation around representation. Despite many worthy submissions from minority candidates, the prestige categories saw no nominees. For people in the old guard, the line of reasoning stays consistent: the best quality programming is nominated, regardless of color. If quality is quality, the cream rises to the top and representation will happen, providing the content merits consideration. And yet, the counter argument holds weight. I first encountered the idea from Vox critic Todd VanDerWerff. In essence, diversity is required to allow for the most interesting stories to be told. The old guard will… Read More →

Television Show Review: Fargo: Season 2

Fargo Season 2

Fargo: Season 2 created by Noah Hawley (MGM Productions, FX Productions) Starring Kirsten Dunst, Patrick Wilson, Jesse Plemons, Jean Smart, Ted Danson, Jeffrey Donovan, Rachel Keller, Nick Offerman, Brad Garrett, Kieran Culkin, Bokeem Woodbine, Angus Sampson, Cristin Milioti, and Zahn McClarnon. Layers and Layers The best stories blend a gripping narrative with intriguing themes that ride underneath the surface. While the plot piques your interest and encourages you to tune in next week, the themes in the undercurrent provide a rich tapestry of human experience. I recently read an article on Kendrick Lamar that explores this very concept. In his tune, “King Kunta,” Lamar frequently references a yam. On the surface, the yam flows with the rest of the lyrics… Read More →

Television Show Review: Fargo: Season 1

Fargo: Season 1

Fargo: Season 1 created by Noah Hawley (MGM Productions, FX Productions) Starring Billy Bob Thornton, Allison Tolman, Colin Hanks, Martin Freeman, Bob Odenkirk, Keith Carradine. Paying Homage The mini-series is a current trend on the television landscape. A one-and-done season allows showrunners to woo bigger stars, enticing them with the promise of a few episodes and minimal time. True Detective earned rave reviews, not only for pristine writing, but also the performances from Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson. Fargo uses the same blend with pristine results. Adapting the sensibility of the Coen Brothers, and using their world from the film, Fargo, Fargo the television series approaches the dichotomy of good and evil through the rough tundra of northern Minnesota. Characters… Read More →