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Discussion in 'Now Playing - TV Show Talk' started by Gunnyman, Nov 2, 2019.
+1 I have enjoyed it and "For All Mankind" since episode 1.
When Alex and Chip were passing on the escalators and she clearly was trying to avoid eye contact, I expected Chip to say "Et tu, Brute?"
Loved the final scene and how they locked Fred out and just went off. However, I felt kind of bad for the new producer guy. Obviously from the main characters' perspective, everything he did was cringeworthy. But if you look at the impossible situation he just fell into, he was just doing the best he could and saying what anyone in his position would say. It will be interesting to see what happens with his character when the new season starts.
That's what I really liked so much about this show. Life and people are complicated.
It would have been really easy to always show Mitch as only a creep. Ewww...goodbye, good riddance. But we get to also see him many times in flashback sequences as being the most charming guy in the room. So it's sad and even more creepy when a guy you actually like in many scenes, does things so very wrong in others. Same with Alex. She put off her divorce for so long because she didn't want her daughter to hate her, and was trying to protect her, but in the end, it looks like a narsassitjc move (might have been) and when they fight, Alex literally hits a breaking point and storming out from her daughter's dorm saying, "F you, kid!". Man, she even took back the pizza. That was cold.
Another thing I admired about this show was actually the relationship between the weather guy Yanko and his young "girlfriend" Claire. By adding their relationship too, they showed that life is complicated. Many people do actually meet and date at work, and not every relationship is one that's predatory in nature, or one where the older male is even the one taking advantage of a younger female. Yanko actually was in love and cared for her, which was a stark contrast to how Mitch used people like a piece of meat. So for Yanko/Claire too, it was really tough for them to navigate things in this new #metoo climate, and the show could have easily omitted this relationship entirely to make things more black/white. Even the (sexual?) tension between Bradley and Cory is one that appears to be completely non-sexual, but it's an intimate relationship nontheless, and it might toe the line of being inappropriate to some.
By adding all these complex and three dimensional characters, it really makes you ask yourself when does a workplace relationship cross the line? And the answer, like Alex's character (and others) is, "It's complicated".
Yeah I was hooked after the first episode!
Not only did she take back the pizza, but she then threw it in the trash! OMG, I cannot imagine throwing away a perfectly good pizza no matter how mad I was! I did wonder if one of the kids in the hallway pulled the pizza box out of the trash after seeing Alex throw it away? I'm pretty sure I would have when I was a poor student.
I started watching for the cast, Jen and Reese specifically. I stayed because it kept getting better and better. It ended the season as a great show.
Yeah, I avoid any thread with spoilers until I caught up. That's why I only posted here after episode 9 when I caught up.
I didn't even know the show had mixed reviews because I avoid any articles about the show, because I don't want the story to get spoiled for me.
That's why when I watched it, I honestly thought this was going to be more of a sitcom-ish show about two women comically fighting over being the main host of the morning show. I had no idea it was even going to be this serious, complex and intriguing. And wow, what a welcome surprise. Fantastic show!
P.S. I was also hoping that with all the positive Apple product placement throughout the show, we would eventually see that Fred was actually using an Android/Samsung smartphone the entire time! Monster!!!
It would not surprise me too much if the new producer is gone. He was installed by Fred. And Fred should be gone.
I hope Fred isn't gone right away. I want to see the power struggle between him and Corey. Fred's a pretty powerful guy and I don't think he'll go quietly. Eventually he will be gone, but I don't think it will be at the start S2 unless they do a time jump.
Agreed. I'd like to see the chaos that ensues immediately after the end of S01E10. I hope it literally picks up the exact second S1 ended. If they do a time jump and we don't get to see the immediate ramifications, I will be disappointed.
I too wonder where it picks up. Right there after going to color bars ? Or months later?
I just wanted to double-back on this because I think episode 10 cleared this up nicely and it made complete sense to me. Hannah was trying to protect Claire. However, from Hannah's perspective, every older guy at work was like Mitch, and having a relationship with Yanko must've meant that Yanko too was like Mitch and only trying to use Claire. Hannah didn't know that their relationship was nothing like what Mitch did to Hannah. So at first Claire was defiant in their meeting at the bar and stormed out and was highly upset with Hannah. But likely, she thought about it, and thought that Hannah was older, wiser, her friend, and actually was trying to actually protect her, so Claire probably thought it over and thought it would be best to break things off with Yanko because she could see how much affected Hannah. So Claire did break it off with Yanko in front of the restaurant, opting to listen to Hannah. The next morning, we saw in Episode 10 that Claire was apologetic to Hannah, and wanted to bring her coffee, etc., because she realized Hannah was probably right.
But then fast forward to Claire finding Hannah's body, and again, that was a game changer. Hannah was tormented by her experience with Mitch, but it was nothing like that for Claire. So that's why when Claire made it back to the studio, she didn't distance herself from Yanko, but instead hugged him.
Again, workplace relationships are really complicated, so I thought the show did a great job by not making every relationship and awful predatory one, because that's not how things always are.
I've started watching the series now. Obviously I can't read the thread until I'm done, but I imagine I will post some episode-by-episode thoughts as I go.
On the first episode:
If this is representative of the first three that Apple released to critics at launch, I understand why the reviews were very mixed. On the one hand, there's a lot here: stars (who are also very good actors), production value, currency, obvious (to me) good intentions. On the other, this is high melodrama, with every emotion pitched at 100% and not a single relatable character on screen. On the latter point, the show seems to be asking us to take on faith that at least some of these people will become, if not likable, then not aggressively off-putting as the show goes on.
I thought that was a real problem with Carrell's character. Our first introduction to him, as he rails about how unfair it is that he doesn't get to be a man (i.e. have affairs because that's what men do obviously, so it's supposed to be OK), dropping F-bombs and insisting he did nothing wrong as he smashes his TV, painted him as a capital-A Ash-hole. This was the guy America loved? This guy? He's the one who was a great friend and partner to Alex (who, we are shown, isn't exactly a peach herself). They're going to have to do some work to rehabilitate him as far as I am concerned, although maybe that's not actually their objective with the character. We'll see.
Overall a bit of a rough start, but it's so competently rough that I would have planned to stay with it even if I didn't know that most people came away really liking this first season. On to episode two.
They are and I think you will. I'll remain silent on the other points until you catch up and read the entire thread.
That post is like a long review of a book after only chapter one.
I can’t even imagine formulating that much of an opinion in something after just the pilot. I’m not even going to say “it gets better” because that implies that the first episode was poorly done. It wasn’t. I think the entire first season is utterly fantastic on so many levels, and should be judged by the entire story they presented not a parsing of only the pilot, but that’s just me.
Heck, he hasn’t even seen the cool “dots” intro yet.
That's why I said I'd wait for them to catch up!
Saying the characters made a poor first impression and everyone yelled a lot is some kind of huge judgment about the whole series? It's called a first impression for a reason.
And even something that starts off great can get better! Don't worry; I'm going to watch the whole thing and I am looking forward to it. Hopefully having opinions about subsequent episodes will be less unfathomable to you.
Thoughts on episode two -- buckle up!
It took me a few tries to get through this episode. Some that was due to time slicing, but some was because the episode just wasn't pulling me through it. About halfway in, though, it struck me that I'd be having a better time with a change in perspective. The slick presentation, star power, and of-the-moment subject matter have had me wanting the show to be a high-minded exploration of serious topics like patriarchy. Maybe the series will turn into that, but so far what it actually has been is a soapy potboiler wearing more serious clothes. Once I flipped that mental switch and engaged with the show more superficially, I started having a great deal more fun with the episode.
Suddenly Crudup's scheming Machiavelli stopped (or maybe started!) needing a mustache to twist. The constant knife's-edge emotions made sense. Ridiculous developments like Alex's surprise announcement in her speech became fun: a boss, "your move" power play. When I decided to stop taking it seriously, it became entertaining. I ended the episode looking forward to what happens next.
One specific thing I liked, and one I disliked. On the former, I really liked the scene between Bradley and Alex at the awards dinner in the restroom. Notwithstanding my comments above, this scene was played fairly straight, and very well. The two of them don't like each other, for reasons real and imagined, and that played out. At the same time, it was obvious to both of them, and the actresses played it this way, that they were victims not of each other but of something larger. The power they had to do anything about it differed, although the results may not. That was really good.
On the latter, I'm still puzzled by the treatment of Mitch so far. Once again, most of his scenes were of him complaining about unfair it was that he can't sleep around without consequence, as though not raping anyone makes him virtuous (or at worst, deserving of his entitlement). It's a strangely unsympathetic portrayal of someone we continue to be told has been America's beloved TV husband and dad for the last fifteen years. I get that what people project to the camera doesn't have to be the person they are behind the scenes, but he's so loathsome so far that I the shock and dismay we see around the show at his ouster don't jibe. I'm interested to see what they do with him from here, but so far it's been hard not to fast-forward through Carrell's scenes.
On to episode three.
Brief episode three thoughts:
I'm glad the next episode will get to the first new TMS because I'm finding myself a bit impatient for the show (both the fictional one and the real one) to get to whatever it is going to be about. Granted it could hardly be moving faster given the premise, but still.
Alex's power play in front of the network brass was a very for-TV scene but I still enjoyed her riding roughshod over them.
Interesting that they chose to use Barney's for the late-night shopping trip since Barney's is going out of business and that store has liquidation signs all over it in real life.
Up until halfway through this episode, I thought Alex's husband was actually her ex and that they were just on really friendly terms. I'm still not sure he isn't.
Speaking of things I'm still not sure about: Mitch. So we get him continuing his woe-is-me, I'm-the-victim-here garment rending, this time paired up with Martin Short, playing against type as a real scumbag. I have no idea what the point of that scene was. Was Short's character so bad that Mitch, seeing what wrong looks like to him, realize that he could be wrong too in the eyes of other people? Or did it just convince him further that he's in the right because, as he says to Short, "I'm not you." No clue what they are doing with him.
Feels like we'll see Marcia Gay Harden as the society reporter again. She's an awfully big-name guest for a throwaway two-line part. (Though we did briefly get Mindy Kaling earlier, so who knows. Besides all of you who've watched the whole series already!)
It's tough reading your summaries for episodes that were so early in the story, and I don't want to spoil anything for you (even though this is a spoiler thread). I will just say that even when that episode aired, that scene with Martin Short was a really powerful one to me. It showed how oblivious Mitch was to the actions he was undergoing. I didn't know the extend of Mitch's actions at the time, so at that moment, maybe he was right, maybe he wasn't. At that stage the viewers didn't know. He might have been a bit over the line, but in his eyes he wasn't a true sexual predator like Martin Short's character. In that moment, it could be similar to a conversation between Louis CK and Harvey Weinstein as old pals. Mitch playing the role of Louie CK, insisting to himself that he had consent from all of his victims and that they were willing participants. Whether that's true to not, I'll just say, remains to be seen as to not spoil anything.
That's why the scene was so powerful. He doesn't get it. He still doesn't get it. Does he ever "get it"? Well, you'll just have to finish the season to find out.