Matt loves Star Wars. Khemit does not. This week we try to figure out who’s right by discussing the merits and shortfalls of the Star Wars Universe. We discuss everything from the original trilogy to The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi to books and comics set in the Extended Universe. Also featuring a not-to-be-missed Grudge Match after which the galaxy will never be the same.
In our 3rd Podcast we talk about the much-welcome resurgence in mature sci-fi Television that is taking place at the moment. We use shows like Altered Carbon and The Expanse to guide the conversation, and take frequent detours to talk about other great and not-so-great TV along the way.
The occasional cuts you may notice are excised interruptions by Matt’s inexhaustible children. Perhaps we’ll compile them into a stand-alone podcast some day!
I won’t say that TV is getting better.
Thanks to the spew of reality TV programming that dominates much of the airwaves these days, TV is more likely, on average, getting worse. However, the number of very good shows, while not quite balancing out all the crap, IS growing at an unprecedented rate. A discerning viewer today has FAR more options than they did a decade ago, and that trend is likely to continue as new networks and outlets begin vying for the audiences that have flocked to quality TV.
Unfortunately, viewership of mediocre, traditional-style shows like Law & Order, The Big bang Theory, and CSI: Poughkeepsie (or whatever), is also still high. And, also unfortunately, in many cases the viewing of new, good TV doesn’t stop viewers from continuing to watch sub-par TV as well.
Through my own personal mixture of narcissism and benevolence, it always seems like a pitiable travesty when I watch otherwise reasonable people subject themselves to middling televisions shows. One reason for this is exposure; most people don’t watch all that much television. And when they do, they do it on an actual television set where they have limited channels, options, and inclination to explore. They see the latest episode of Bones on and say “why not.” I always think to myself: “Someone should do something to help those poor people!”
I understand that most people don’t take their fiction as seriously as I do, but I still ask: why does an end-of –day diversion have to be mundane and formulaic when it could be stimulating and enriching? Many of us watch TV as an escape from our daily routines; why not make that escape memorable.
To that end, and to give a head start to those of us that want to pull ourselves up out of the mire of daytime drama, I’ve listed below some of the best shows made in recent years in no particular order. If you haven’t watched these shows, there’s no reason to be watching anything inferior to them. In addition, while these shows may be the 5 star top of the heap, there are tons of 4 and 3 star shows that should still take precedence over NCIS, Burn Notice, or whatever other nonsense you’re watching because your finger got tired of changing channels.
Work your way down to the crap TV, not up to the excellent.
3) The Wire
4) Breaking Bad
6) Battlestar Galactica (new series)
7) Avatar: The Last Airbender
10) The Office (British version)
12) Generation Kill