Due to travelling more than usual in 2014, I had the opportunity to see a more movies and TV shows than usual. I carry my iPad loaded with things to watch, and when I don’t have to work on the plane or in the hotel, I fire up something to watch before falling asleep. Goes pretty well with a couple of glasses of whiskey or wine.
I picked the three best films and TV series that I tore through in 2014. These are the TV shows. The movies appear in the preceding post.
Orphan Black – Created by John Fawcett and Graeme Manson
I joined #CloneClub this year. The best thing about the series is the tour-de-force performance by actress Tatiana Maslany, who has so far played (by my count) 9 different characters (5 major) on screen, and appears multiple times in scenes constantly. Assuming she’s being paid for one role, she’s putting in four times the work. Best tidbit – she has playlists for each character and gets transitions by playing the music and dancing in a style that particular for that character. I have concerns that the show will eventually paint itself into a corner plot-wise, but since Orphan Black has only gone two seasons, that’s a bit into the future. Hopefully it avoids the “Heroes” jinx.
The Americans – Created by Joseph Weisberg
One of the smartest shows on television. Also one of the most brutal, in many ways. On the surface, this is a spy show. It’s really a show about complex human relationships under the surface. How violent can we really be with other people? How about to the people we love, and/or who love us? Sometimes, you can do far worse damage with words than with a gun.
The Wire – Created by David Simon
I rectified a major gap in my TV experience in 2014 by tearing through all five seasons of The Wire, considered by some as the greatest TV series ever. I was not disappointed. The show aged well, and the first four seasons are some of the best hours of television I’ve had the pleasure of watching. (I can forget that season five exists.) The characters are enduring and memorable, and the storylines are immersive. The show would be in my top three, with Breaking Bad and The Sopranos. Maybe Mad Men (which I also caught up with in 2014). It was a good year for television.