Wednesday, June 16, 2010

TV post-BRAVO: Your advice appreciated

My name is Aisha and I was a BRAVO addict. Million Dollar Listing. Millionaire Matchmaker. Real Housewives of any county. I won't say I'm proud of this fascination I had with the top producer of trash TV but man it was entertaining to watch while cooking, folding laundry or other mindless chores. For years I watched and then one day Direct TV learned of my deep everlasting love of this channel and promptly began charging $20/month for the privilege of watching. So being good desis who don't spend on frivolity when possible, we cut it. I smiled and said this was good. I'll read more! I said. I'll sit in the silence and contemplate life. But sitting in silence doesn't happen so much with a baby. Plus, its hard to prop a book while trying to feed a fussy newborn at 3am. I tried watching HGTV with shows such as House Hunters, hoping it would be a tolerable replacement to the real estate shows on BRAVO- except it wasn't. Everyone is so nice on HGTV. No plate throwing, no secret confessionals of secret desires. The kitchen is lovely! The bathroom is pretty! It's all so pleasant, congenial: boring.

I approached K to discuss investing in some BRAVO viewing and he suggested perhaps getting Netflix as an alternative. This struck me as a good idea. With the departure of LOST (as disappointing a departure as it was) and other shows I loved, there's been a dearth of good television to sink my eyes into. My question to you is, what was your favorite show past or present that you might recommend I Netflix? A friend already lent me her collection of Buffy, [which I'm afraid perhaps you had to be a teen in the early 90's to fully appreciate at least as of episode three] but any other suggestions would be truly appreciated!

15 comments:

Shawna said...

Arrested Development is hilarious. Netflix has all three seasons available right now. We also like Dexter, but it's extremely disturbing to me, so we had to give it up.

Good luck! Good shows are hard to come by and that background noise (of adult voices) is like a tall drink of water when it's just you and a baby.

Anonymous said...

Dexter!

Bongi said...

you must watch buffy!! although yes i haven't watched it recently, i still loved it as an early 20 something year old! Also

1) Six feet under
2) Arrested Development
3) Nip/Tuck although this possibly might not be your thing,
4) 24


I never saw Lost whilst it was on tv, since it's demise i have been racing through the boxsets, so far on season 5 and it has become totally dull

Anonymous said...

Don't forget that you can watch shows on Hulu!! I really don't watch many shows so I'm not much help:)
Pixie

Cylinda said...

How can anyone be charging $20 a month for Bravo?!?! That's practically obscene!

Anyway, Buffy is still my favorite show to this day (at least the first 5 seasons). You must watch! And if you end up liking Buffy, I would recommend to you "Firefly", also made by Joss Wheadon. It's like a space western, but so much more than that--unfortunately only lasted 13 episodes, but was really well done and worth watching.

While Buffy is my favorite, I consider the Wire to be the best television show ever made. EVER. It's Dickensian in scope, and is astonishing/breathtaking/heartbreaking in its artistic vision. It's not the easiest show to watch (hence Buffy is my fave), but deeply rewards viewers who stick with it. If you watch, you have to at least give it 3 episodes--the first few are tough because of all of the slang and the complicated story lines--it never dumbs things down for viewers, and expects you to keep up. It takes a few episodes, but eventually you understand what most people are saying, and what is going on--and that's when the fun starts. :-)

I like Dexter (lead character is a serial killer, but has a "code" that restricts him to killing "bad" people), but it's not everyone's cup of tea...it's fascinating though how it challenges viewers morals (are you going to root for Dexter to kill? and if so, what does that say about you?)

Arrested Development is awesome and one of the funniest shows ever, if you're into that kind of humor (I do know some people who didn't like it--I loved it).

You might consider Battlestar Galactica too, which is not so much sci-fi as it is intense psychological drama that happens to be set in space. At it's best, it was truly riveting and thought-provoking. Unfortunately, I think it was a little uneven towards the end (much like Lost), and so I don't recommend it quite as strongly as the shows above.

Last but not least, I strongly recommend Wonderfalls and Pushing Daisies, both created by Brian Fuller. Neither show lasted very long, but both are smart, funny, and enormously entertaining. Both have fantastical elements that make them off the beaten path (Wonderfalls is about a girl who starts having conversations with inanimate animals--stuffed bears, etc--who start telling her to "do" things, and she ends up helping people against her will; Pushing Daisies is about a guy who can bring dead things back to life by touching them, but if he touches them again they're dead for good--his life gets complicated when he brings back to life a childhood sweetheart, who he then can't touch ever again).

There's my short list! Once you're through all that, report back and I'll give you more ;-)

lovetodaydream said...

We have different shows here, but one american show I LOVE is BONES!

I used to watch Buffy as a teenager but now I don't know If I would watch it again :-)

Lawyer Loves Lunch said...

I'd recommend Entourage. It's light and they are already a couple of seasons in so you have lots of good stuff to catch up on. We also recently started watching True Blood. Definitely darker but thus far, enjoyable :)

Gia said...

I'm on board with Dexter - It's so fascinating.

On the other end of the spectrum, I highly recommend How I Met Your Mother! It cracks me up each time! :)

Happy Viewing!

pilgrimchick said...

It depends upon your sense of humor, but I found Flight of the Conchords (HBO series) hilarious. There are two seasons of the show--not endless hours to watch, but all of the shows are worthwhile. The subjects of the program are legit musicians who write all of the songs featured. I promise you that you'll probably watch one or two episodes and think "what is this?!", but if you watch three or four, you'll be hooked.

Aisha said...

Thanks y'all! I look forward to watching some of these. I already watch How I met your mother, but other than that all the suggestions are new ones I have never seen!

Anonymous said...

Watch Veronica Mars. Not too many seasons since it got canceled but witty script and nothing too 'deep.' I loved it and was sad to see it go.

Ash

Aisha said...

Ash- I HEART Veronica Mars!!!!! What else do you like? We seem to have similar taste!!!

Aamina said...

HAHAHA! API YOU ARE SO FUNNY!!!

Paying $20/month for bravo is soooo worth it. How can you say no to Bridezillas or all the other high intelligence wedding shows on there?!?!?!?!!!

Anonymous said...

@Aisha - lol. I'm afraid my taste in tv series isn't too highbrow. Desperate Housewives, Ugly Betty (sadly gone as well), Project Runway and Glee. Pretty much all I have time for. Have heard The Wire is good so may check that out.

Ash

katery said...

oh my god, i know this is an old post but i LOVE bravo and i am also not proud of it, i will die if my cable company starts charging $20/month for it, that's highway robbery. i am not going to read all the previous comments so i'm sure some of these will be repeats for you but these are some of my favorite shows, past and present:
freaks and geeks
mad men
breaking bad
true blood
big love
nurse jackie
eastbound and down
six feet under
dexter
the united states of tara
weeds
this american life (on npr as well as showtime)
it's always sunny in philadelphia

rubicon is a new show starting on amc next week, i've only seen one episode but i love breaking bad and mad men which are both amc shows. two people have recently told me that the wires is really good, but i haven't had time to watch it myself yet.

anyway, i hope you're doing well and i'm glad to have this blog address :)

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