Originally posted on 03/29/2006 at 1up.com
Similar I think, to alot of young people, for a long time television depressed me. It was just so ... bad. The only shows were series like Ally McBeal, Sex in the City, NYPD Blue. Mostly, shows that didn't much interest young people. There were occasional shows of much intrigue, like the X-Files, Xena, and the like. ... but those are all getting pretty old. However, it seems recently, as suprised as I am to say this, television is getting better.
Sure, there's still the regular mass amounts of shit to wade through. American Idol, Survivor, mostly the whole of VH1; but the drama series popping up these days are like shining beacons of awesome, amidst a pool of bleak, reality TV garbage. The upstarts of this wave of goodness were most likely shows like CSI, The Shield, and LOST. I can't say I've given much care about CSI, (It's just not my thing...), but The Shield paved the way for real gritty television, showcasing the darker side of our friendly police force; and LOST, easily the best show on television today, proved that science fiction isn't as dead in the mainstream as it may have seemed for years. 24 is probably a likely candidate for inclusion in this collection as the others. These shows were basically groundbreaking dramas, that really surpass, by far, their prime-time ancestors.
The new breed of these shows is starting to appear on basically every channel, cable or network. Prison Break seems like a generally interesting show, I've missed the beginning of the series, but it's a damn creative idea, and I can't wait till I have the time to watch it all. LOST has basically inspired an entire breed of television show, with Threshold and Surface, both of which seem great, but I'll stick it out with the original.
My favorite series as of late seem to be the crime dramas. We're finally stepping away from police dramas, and getting to see the story from the side of the crooks. The Shield probably inspired this, but shows like Hustle and Thief perfect the idea. Hustle chronicles the stories of a group of Con artists in England. It's a show from the BBC, airing on AMC. It has basically the style and panache of Guy Ritchie fame (Snatch, Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrels), and I think the truth is, everyone loves watching con artists. They're so freaking cool.
... and on to Thief. The first episode of Thief aired tonight on FX, and I caught it by chance. I enjoyed it so much that it basically inpired this entire post. The story surrounds a group of high-stakes thieves, and the problems that can arise for them in one night. Wow! This show was fantastic. Andre Braugher is pretty much my favorite TV actor of all time, and he doesn't dissapoint in Thief. The first time I ever saw him was in an episode of Law and Order, or Homicice: Life on the Street or some shit like that, I was just channel-surfing and I never found out the story of the character, I only sam him crying and suffering from a serious studder, and I was basically moved to tears. So, I give Thief, my whole-hearted recommendation, most peole have a spare hour Tuesday evenings, so WATCH IT!!
I'm happy that drama on television is finally something worthwhile again. Apart from the series today I don't think I've ever enjoyed television this much, except for maybe That 70's Show and M*A*S*H.