Saturday, January 9, 2016

Midseason TV review: Blindspot, Castle, Blacklist

Yes, this seems like an odd collection of shows to group together, but two are against each other on Monday night, and two are both on NBC.

Starting with Blindspot, they had a good, strong run of episodes to open this season ... until they hit a solid wall.  In an attempt to make each episode about government corruption, they stretched themselves beyond the breaking point with one episode that was so badly executed, even the actors seem to have a hard time getting through the episode, and the director must have filmed everything in one take in a rush to get the crap over and done with.

Am I exaggerating?  Well, how about this: the main plot of the episode is around evil corrupt cops, using body cameras for blackmail. Their first blackmail victim was blackmailed because he was a gay sports star ... yes, because that apparently still matters, because evil football, or something.  And of course, evil corrupt cops, because Ferguson, or something.

Meanwhile, in the same episode, you had the FBI division commander involved in going over the NSA data that was scooped up in PRISM, in cahoots with the CIA director and the FBI agent's girlfriend. Yes, that's right, girlfriend.  Let's jam as much gay / bi /whatever into the episode in one big round of Lefty-storylines and vomit it out in one go. We have once more returned to the grand old days of the CIA is evil -- and not in a-Libertarian sort of "all government is evil" kind of way, more like a 90's cartoonishly-evil way.

Since then, Blindspot hasn't quite recovered. The villains since then have been deranged, perverted Bond-villains.  It's jarring, given what happened at the start of the season.

The mid-season reveal is ... casually blowing away the CIA Director, and showing that our girl of the million tattoos had her own memory wiped.  Yes, really.

Blindspot is on a razor's edge here, and may not make it to the end of the season.

Castle, on the other end, is still as fun and as odd as ever.  Despite having an opening gambit that made me certain would spell the series' doom, the show has managed to continue to be as charming and as creative, and as deranged as the ones before.

That being said, Nathan Fillion has made mutterings about leaving, and last year, the show didn't even know if i would be renewed.  So, I'll lay money that this is the last season, no matter what the storyline says.

As for The Blacklist ... I like half of this show a lot.  Half of this show is dealing with the supervillain du jour while being hunted by the FBI, and the other half is about soap opera stuff that makes me crazy.

Basically, this is a vehicle for James Spader to ride roughshod over everybody. And it's always a joy to watch him play. Frankly, they should just show him onstage all the time.

Strangely enough, for the most part, yes, I like all of these shows. And I especially want Blindspot to get back to the quality of the early days of the season. Seriously, how can you screw up Lady Sif as Jason Bourne? Get your acts together, people.

1 comment:

  1. I watched a few episodes of The Blacklist, and thought it would be my new binge show, but found the violence there in living color too much. This issue has prevented me from watching a good many shows. It seems to cross a line into gratuitous violence, though of course this is subjective.

    I really wanted to watch Sons of Anarchy, but I couldn't, for the same reason.


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