nonionay: (goddesscross)
[personal profile] nonionay
I've been catching up on Breaking Bad, and this has me thinking about Prestige Television. (A term I find slightly amusing because it seems to mean, "tv that is actually good, possibly because they are on cable and have a budget big enough to hire quality talent.") Looking over Netflix's recommendations for me, I wonder if it thinks I'm a middle-aged white man. Among my favorite tv shows are Breaking Bad, Justified, and Deadwood. All those shows have good female characters (Justified could make a spinoff called "Margo Martindale Deserved Her Own Show" and I'd be happy. Her character could be an anti-hero I'd love to explore.) but they are definitely primarily focused on the men, and have incredibly insightful explorations of masculinity.

It's arguable whether or not someone like Walter White of Breaking Bad could be replaced with a woman. While any gender could be driven to desperation by illness and love of family, Walt's arrogance, which drives him into the darkest depths, is likely connected with his sense of masculinity. It would be a very different, but still compelling story.

So I thought, what Prestige TV actually centers on at least one female character, but isn't Sex In The City? I'm not really pop culture literate, and my tv viewing is limited to what Netflix and Hulu and the library give me. (I'd be all over Game of Thrones if I got HBO. I think that definitely fits into my category of having women carry an equal share of the story.) Dexter probably qualifies, but it is still called Dexter, not "Deb" or "My Brother's a Serial Killer!" But if you were take Deb out of that show, it would be far weaker for it.
Mad Men probably also qualifies, but it seems like while the women are still vital to the story, Don Draper and his understanding of his masculinity is still the focus. Besides, I watched a few episodes, and though it's clearly brilliant, I couldn't handle the suburban angst. I should probably give it another try one of these days.

In the previews to The Butler, I saw Masters of Sex, which looks promising, (though it's on Showtime. Another one to wait until it hits the library!)
What other shows can I explore?

Date: 2013-09-14 02:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'd recommend "The West Wing" and the original "The Twilight Zone" (especially the first 3 seasons with the restored picture and sound). Both are examples of superb television and Aaron Sorkin and Rod Serling can't be beat!

And whenever I hear about prestige television, I can't help but think of a quote by Bill Maher back in the early 90s:

"TV did the movie, 'The Early Frost' eight years before 'Philadelphia', and the miniseries, 'Holocaust' fifteen years before 'Schindler's List'. Ninety-nine percent of TV is dreck, but the 1percent that isn't is way ahead of the movies every time."

Date: 2013-09-14 03:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I haven't watched either yet, but I've heard nothing but good things about Orange is the New Black and Orphan Black. OITNB in particular was being promoted as Prestige TV.

American Horror Story: Murder House has a pretty evenly split main cast, but I felt like Violet and Vivien were really the central characters. Very well done show.


nonionay: (Default)

August 2014

1011 1213 141516

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 22nd, 2017 08:45 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios