Tag Archives: Boardwalk Empire

The Great Big TV Scoreboard 2

tvscoreboard

Almost a year ago to the day (ok, within 2 weeks), I wrote about my weird obsession with ranking TV shows. It’s a side effect of the discussions I have with my friend, Marty. A lot has changed in the last year. Some shows have taken  a step forward, I’ve become familiar with others, and some shows have taken horrible steps into the abyss. It’s time to update the Great Big TV Scoreboard.

As you may recall from last year, this is all about the premium cable drama. Comedies and network shows are excluded. Continue reading

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The Great Big TV Scoreboard

I talk about TV shows a lot with my friend Marty. If he says I should check out a TV show, I check it out, and vice versa. Somewhere along the line through the years, we started ranking the shows that we both watched. It provided us with an easy gauge for how we felt about certain shows. Marty has other responsibilities now- his infant daughter, for instance- and those conversations almost never happen far less frequently. But I never really stopped ranking TV shows in my head. Call it the great, big TV scoreboard. Just for grins, this is how I rank all of my favorite cable TV dramas. Understand that a lot of this stuff changes almost weekly. Continue reading

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The 10 Best TV Show Title Sequences

I am a total sucker for TV show title sequences. In a matter of a minute or two, title sequences teleport us into the world that the show’s creators present for us. They put us in the mood and they evoke everything that the show is about. Here are the 10 best. Continue reading

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Boardwalk Empire: The Music

If a cable network asked me to come up with a concept for a TV series, I’d come up with something like Boardwalk Empire, which will debut its third season starting this weekend. It’s about organized crime and classic real life gangsters, it’s produced by Martin Scorsese, it stars Steve Buscemi, and it’s a period piece. In fact, the effort HBO makes to place it in a proper era context is a big part of the show’s charm for me. And a significant part of their effort is that they go out of their way to use actual music from the Roaring 20s. It’s a neat trick. Here are some of my favorite songs that have been featured on Boardwalk Empire. Continue reading

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Return Dates for 2012 Cable TV Dramas

The next few weeks will be big if you’re a fan of cable and premium cable drama. Two of the heavyweights of cable TV drama will start their next seasons on the heels of the season 2 finale of The Walking Dead. It can be maddening if you’re a fan of these shows, waiting for the networks to wrap up production and air the next season. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve done a google search for this information the last few years, I’d… well, I’d probably have $50. But you get the idea. To help, I’ve compiled some updates (as of March 19) for the return of your favorite cable TV dramas. Continue reading

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Four Obvious Aspects That Will Make Television Drama Sink or Swim

The last decade or so has given us banner years for premium cable drama. It started with HBO shows like The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, and Carnivale. Then it expanded to a few Showtime selections–Dexter and Californication, even as HBO continued to pile on other options. Since then, both AMC and FX have gotten into the game with Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Sons of Anarchy, and Justified. A great deal of these shows have entertained audiences endlessly. Others have taken the next step into critical acclaim. The quickest route to critical acclaim is to pay special attention to four aspects, which will ultimately play a large role in determining whether or not a show will sink or swim. They’re really obvious aspects, far easier to define than to accomplish when writing TV drama. Many shows can survive, even thrive, without excelling in these four categories, but it’s clearly not ideal. Continue reading

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Boardwalk Empire, Season 2: Final Thoughts

Boardwalk Empire just completed the second season, a season that was met with much critical acclaim. The Onion AV Club gave five of the episodes this season A- or better ratings, and believe me–they don’t dole those out liberally. For comparison, the beloved show Modern Family only has one A or A- rating this season. Curb Your Enthusiasm earned 4 A or A- grades out of their most recent ten-episode season. So how did the season go? What’s left to be said before we put the show away for a few months? Here are my final thoughts on the second season. Caution: spoilers ahead for the entire season. If you haven’t seen the whole season, I highly recommend that you do not read this. Continue reading

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Five Shows I Think You Should Be Watching



I won’t even try to hide it- I am 100% “that guy”. I will harass the crap out of people about TV shows that I like. “Oh, you haven’t seen that yet?”, it starts. “Well you really should. It’s amazing”. Fast forward to the next time I see that same person. “Hey, did you ever check out _______?”. After the inevitable ‘no’, I continue the assault. “Oh, wow, you have no idea what you’re missing”. And on and on until eventually, people either tell me to shut the hell up and leave them alone about it, or they finally watch it. So what is the current checklist of TV shows that I think you should be watching? Continue reading

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The Wire-ning of Premium Cable Programming

A few months ago, 2004 called me and insisted that I finally watch The Wire. After all, I’ve watched just about every other major premium cable show. And few received the critical acclaim that The Wire did. So I gobbled it up. I just completed it last night. There were many, many things I enjoyed about the show- too many to get into here. One aspect I enjoyed was seeing one actor after another that I was familiar with from other premium cable shows, popping up on The Wire. So many of the supporting characters on the show were so good at what they did that other shows around cable had taken notice. Here’s a list of where else you find these actors:

Michael K. Williams
Williams played Omar Little on The Wire, one of the show’s most popular and recognizable characters. He nailed the role, playing the terrifying Robin Hood of Baltimore’s projects. It was with little surprise that HBO turned to him again when they had a meaty role in Boardwalk Empire for a character named Chalky White. Sure enough, one season is in the books of Boardwalk Empire and Williams is again playing a very memorable character. Indeed. Continue reading

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Takin’ Hollywood Down to South Park

You’ve no doubt seen the results of the various South Park character generators on the internet. I spent some time monkeying around with one of them the other day and had a blast. While it’s not necessarily anything new, it was still a lot of fun. The generator I used to create these can be found at www.sp-studio.de. Feel free to visit and play around with it. Here’s what I created:

The Boardwalk Empire Collection
Nucky Thompson, Jimmy Darmody, Chalky White

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