Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

For Your High Brow Trashy Fix

I regret to inform that your numble correspondent is ending up completely brain fried today, via a combination of lots of competitive price analysis and even more mortgage and house-buying paperwork. Thus, my intent is not to write tonight but rather to veg out over a bottle of Trader Joe's Holiday Ale and a set of DVDs from the library.

And so, seeking something less mentally demanding than a movie and yet higher brow than network TV I ask them as might be willing to venture an opinion: Sopranos, Six Feet Under or Big Love -- which one and why? (I've never seen any of any of them, but having a number of non-kid-present hours and a lot of tired braincells to un-wind, I thought I might give one a try as the library seems well provided with DVD sets.)


Anonymous said...

The Wire. Best show ever. I'm serious.


Anonymous said...

Well, I second the Wire if that's an option. It takes some patience, but it pays off (imho).

I've seen the first couple seasons of the Sopranos and the first few of Big Love, but none of Six Feet Under.

The first season of the Sopranos is very good. As you would expect, there is lots of violence, language and gratuitous nudity (for some reason the director finds it necessary to remind the viewer at every opportunity that Tony and his crew work out of a strip club), but the characters are entertaining and interesting and it's somewhat thought-provoking.

Big Love is also an interesting show; it's a sort of reflection on how a polygamous relationship would play out in the modern U.S. (well, at lest in Utah). The acting is pretty good and there are occasional sympathetic meditations on faith. It was more of a watch-with-Christine show than something I would have picked out for myself (with all of the focus on relationships etc.), but I'll admit I found it compelling in spots. This only applies to the first two seasons, though. After that, the show degenerates into a traditional soap opera.

John Henry

Anonymous said...

I'm a born and bred Jersey Girl so my vote is obviously the Sopranos. But the reason why I like it so much is that I know people exactly like them and I know the area, towns, stores, restaurants, etc. where the show was filmed. In fact, in high school, my best friend's father owned a butcher store in Paterson, NJ named "George the Butcher". I almost fell off the couch when 25 years later the old familiar store showed up on screen. They had sold the store years before.

Even trashier, of course, is the Real Housewives of NJ who live in the same town where I went to high school. But I don't recommend that unless you like to watch train wrecks.

Have you been to Dirty Franks yet in Columbus? You have to order the Glen Beck.

BettyDuffy said...

Joe and I watched every Season back to back over a month or two. Totally ruled our lives. Agree with J.H.'s assessment of nudity, profanity, drug use, yadda yadda--but the good (or bad) news is that you stop seeing it after awhile--some might call that a dulled conscience, but it just might be worth it--particularly if you're a sucker for redemption stories (or at least the potential thereof).

Kate said...

Big Love. I can't watch something like the Sopranos or a lot of cop shows bc I can't handle the bloodshed and crudity. But Big Love is fascinating, well written, well acted. More fun to watch with someone you can talk it over with afterwards though.

My DH recommends Deadwood if you have a lot of 'bachelor' time to fill.

Enbrethiliel said...


Big Love.

It makes me want to be Mormon and be Bill Henrickson's fifth wife.

No, really, it's well-written, well-acted and very thought-provoking. I remember some other Catholic blogger noting that the producers are well known advocates of gay marriage, and that this show is an oblique way of showing how an "alternative" marriage could actually work. Not that what it portrays is anything that new: Ginnifer Goodwin has said that she has met people from Utah who've told her that they knew families just like the Henricksons when they were growing up. Anyway, hidden agenda or not, I'm eating it all up with a spoon.

Mrs. Zummo said...

I vote Big Love, too. I think it will provide a lot of fodder for some blog posts on your favorite topics of love, marriage, and family. I suppose the producers of the show had the intention to advocate "alternative" marriages, but the effect is very different. The Henricksons are a big hot mess, and it just gets worse and worse each episode. I think everyone would have been better off is Bill and Barb had stayed a couple rather than a quadruple. It also shows the dangers of everyone creating their own "church" where they can order life to their own desires without reference to authority or tradition.

Dorian Speed said...

The Wire. Unless you want to actually sleep and not watch 6 hours of TV every night, in which vase you should lock something different.

The Opinionated Homeschooler said...

The Wire. With subtitles. Really. You'll need them.

As Josh could tell you, it's all the rage among linguistics geeks. And fun to play "spot the actors who are really English."

Enbrethiliel said...


I wish Mrs. Zummo had posted before I did so I could have just seconded everything she said.

Also, I just reread your post, Darwin, and you specified that you are seeking something both "high brow" and "trashy." I'm not sure about The Wire (as I've never actually watched it), but I can guarantee that Big Love meets both criteria to a T. It's a soap opera with actual character development.

TS said...

Don't know about those Tv shows but good news on the radio front:

Anonymous said...

The Wire.

Peter and Nancy said...

Just a word of warning . . . be ready for a lot of f-bombs if you watch The Wire. It is generally well-written, but I found the cuss words a little insulting after a while . . . as in, insulting to my intelligence: "We get it. The cops are gritty. Now find a new adjective, adverb, verb, noun . . ." :o)

Anonymous said...

I agree that "The Wire" is outstanding. Another outstanding series you can find at the library is "Foyle's War," set in England during WWII.

Matthew Lickona said...

Sopranos. The nudity is not titillating. The violence is not attractive. Everything is personal.