Summer is always a bit of a quiet time for new TV. With the evenings longer and people out enjoying the sun, why bother wasting some cracking new show on a limited audience when you know that twice as many viewers will be sat snuggled up at home once October rolls around?
So, what better way to kill some time in the summer months than to binge on a few boxsets, or catch up on those shows that you simply haven’t had time to watch during the more affluent winter nights?
Fear The Walking Dead
I know I’m in an overwhelmed minority (much like our post-apocalyptic heroes…), but I think I may actually prefer Fear to TWD. It’s a bold statement, I’ll admit, but I think my reasoning lays with the characters. Sure, TWD’s band of rogues and renegades are a likeable bunch, but being based on comic-book characters, they can often seem, well… Just that. While some of Fear’s characters are flawed and frustrating for the wrong reasons (personally, I don’t quite get Nicholas…), the majority are flawed and frustrating because they are real humans, thus leading to much more believable motivations and interactions. With the season two finale leaving the sanity and safety of a number of characters in question, I for one am actually more excited for this to return than the main show.
The original movie upon which FOX’s latest import is based remains one of the greatest horror films of our generation. A film, much like its contemporary Eden Lake, not to be enjoyed, but to be endured. The TV show, in according with its predecessor, follows the exploits of pig-shooter Mick Taylor as he gleefully does away with the pesky tourists plaguing his outback. The problem with the show is that, after its initial shocking opening, it does meander ponderously around the great golden wilderness. Taylor (a returning John Jarratt) lacks the menace from the original film, and Lucy Fry as our heroine is perhaps not the most engaging of actresses. For fans of the movies, this might be something of a Wolf Creek Lite, but for new audiences… Well, prepare to meet our Mick…
If you aren’t watching Stranger Things, you should be. It’s as simple as that. Spielberg meets King as we are thrown head-first down a rabbit-hole of nostalgia to a world of Never Saying Die, Dungeons and Dragons, and general 1980s awesomeness. I won’t bang on; just watch it. Now.
The Only Way Is Essex
I had never watched this piece of British… “culture”… before this week. Indeed, had my brother not been performing on it with his circus troupe, I would probably have managed to avoid this foul and pestilent congregation of vapours for the rest of my existence. Alas, that was not to be…
For the uninitiated, TOWIE is a scripted reality show, following the “real lives” of a group of Essex folk. Now, perhaps if I had been watching the show from the beginning, my consciousness might have liquefied into such a state that this week’s season finale would have proved a thrilling venture, with Long-Haired-Essex-Boy-With-Beard proclaiming his love for Over-Tanned-Essex-Girl-With-More-Tan being the highlight of my televisual year. But no. Vacuous, poorly acted, and pretty much everything that is wrong with the modern world, the only way is most definitely not Essex.