Good TV shows are hard to find!

Good TV shows are hard to find!

 

More and more I find myself re-watching TV shows that have long since ended. One of these shows, which I have watched about 8 episodes in the last week, is The Mentalist. I noticed it on Prime a little over a week ago and it has pretty much been the only thing I have watched since. It is such a great show and has a fantastic cast. The main star of the show is Simon Baker, who also stared in a show call The Guardian. Maybe I will write up something about that show sometime as well, it’s another great one. The Mentalist is about a man name Patrick Jane who loses his wife and daughter at the hands of a serial killer named Red John. A lot of back story revolves around catching him, but each episode has its own story and plot. Cast is made up of characters you can believe are real. Each having their own strengths and weaknesses. Each having a role to play. The acting is top-notch and the chemistry is some of the best I have ever seen on a show. The only one I can think of, off the top of my head, that would match it is JAG. The episodes are well written and thought out. They are not always hard to figure out, but there are some surprises along the way. It has smooth camera work and not a lot of jumping around and quick takes to make it look edgy or complex. I really just can’t say enough good stuff about it.

As I was watching the first few episodes it dawned on me that there really isn’t much out there like it anymore. Each character is well written and has their own style and characteristics. It was women on the show that really stood out when you compare them to today’s female characters. They are nothing alike on the show, other than both being cops. They all have ranges of emotion and handle themselves like women in the real world.  nowadays, every woman is written the same way. Five foot three, one hundred and twenty pounds of tough chick. Don’t get me wrong, that works sometimes but not in shows that are supposed to be realistic. Most people, women and men, in the real world know their limitations. Not the women in shows of today. These women have no limitations and no flaws. They can do no wrong and are “unstoppable”. There is nothing worse than a show full of loud mouth, bossy, tough chicks that look like they would fall down if the wind blew hard. There is nothing appealing about it and in fact I would say it’s a smack in the face to women. Most women don’t act like that. They know there is a lot more to a person than something so one dimensional. How much fun is a story there the person can’t lose or is flawless? Even in the old school action movies, the heroes were flawed. Most of the time they had lots of flaws and the only thing they were good at was this one thing they needed for the movie.

This is all caused by lazy writers that are more interested in their agenda than telling a good story. They start with bad characters who they know nothing about other than their “oppression” type (gay, female, ethnic…etc.) and then go about writing a story that speaks out about that so-called oppression. This makes for bad stories and even worse characters with no depth or personality. It makes someone like me, who has always loved TV shows and movies, not want to even watch it anymore or at the very least not watch anything new. You just get tired of the same lame characters and the same BS story lines.

  • White people are bad.
  • Men are bad.
  • Orange man bad.
  • Any life style you have is normal and everyone should accept it.
  • Women can do anything a man can do.
  • Women don’t need a man.
  • Everyone is oppressed.

These few things cover just about everything on TV now, and I am fed up with it. They have ruined several shows on Netflix that had great first seasons with good stories and characters with a crappy second season with terrible stories and characters. It’s as if they can’t help themselves.

This brings me back to my opening point, which I find myself watching more and more older shows. Maybe that’s what it will take for these companies to catch on that they are putting out garbage. If everyone stopped watching the new stuff and tuned in to old shows, they would see people don’t want this crap. If you do, make sure you check out The Mentalist on Prime. The show is funny, dramatic and just well put together. You’ll be glad you did.

One last thing, if you find a new show that doesn’t have all the SWJ stupidity, leave me a comment and let me know so I can check it out.

Was “Man of Steel” really that bad?

As many of you know the movie Man of Steel starring Henry Cavill has not been held up a good Superman movie. I have heard it called lackluster, crappy, garbage…etc. I personally think those words and sentiment is unwarranted. Sure, the movie is not perfect and there is some stuff I didn’t like about it.

First, I think they didn’t set up Clark very good. That side of Superman is extremely important, and you lose something when Clark does really show up. He is the humanity of Superman and helps set him apart from other super heroes. Clark, unlike most alter egos, is very simple and humble. He’s not a billion, a test pilot or even a police forensic analyst. He’s just a report out doing a normal 9-5 job. Here is this man who could do anything in the world he wants and he is content to be normal. To me that’s extraordinary and worth the time to set up in a story.

Second, I don’t like the way they killed off Jonathan Kent. Unlike the first movie in 1978 where Clark didn’t know he could have saved his father, this time he stands there knowing he can but on a simple wave off by his dad he doesn’t. That is out of character for Clark or Superman and was a bad idea.

Third, Let’s face it. Lois was terrible. Amy Adams is a fine actress, but she just can’t pull off Lois Lane. Especially after seeing Erica Durance play her for years on Smallville.

Lastly, the absence of the Superman theme. It just doesn’t have the same feel without it.

I am sure there are a few more things I could nitpick about but those were my biggest complaints. Despite those things, there was a lot of good there.

First, Henry is a great Superman! Sure, his Clark needs some work, but I think that is easily fixable. He looks sound and acts like you expect Superman to. When you see him run out on the helipad and grab the failing structure, you see Superman. Top notch in my book.

Second, after the terrible fight scenes in the original Superman movies we finally got a realistic battle with Superman and a supervillain and it didn’t disappoint. These scenes could not have been any bigger or better.

Third, Krypton was really cool. The design of the one from the original never really made sense to me. How would grow food on a planet of nothing but crystals and all the white clothes made no sense. Don’t get me wrong, it was very cool back the day but still not logical.

Fourth, Jor-El was great in this movie. Russell Crowe mailed it. This is the kind of guy that would risk everything to save his son. No matter the cost, his son was going to live. Crowe is great in just about anything and he brought his A-game.

Finally, for the first time we got to see some of the struggle a boy would have to go through if he had these powers. Learning to control them. Learning to hide in plain sight. This would not be an easy thing to do and they should that. Unfortunately, that didn’t translate well in the adult Clark scenes but it was great seeing a young Clark struggle and it not just be because he wants to show off.

The long and short of this is that I think this was a pretty good movie and they could easily fix the mistakes with a sequel to it. It’s a shame they kind of gave up on it so quickly and tried the silly Batman vs Superman, which was a God-awful movie. If you haven’t seen it or maybe saw it when it first came out, give it watch and see if you again or disagree with me.

DAD…The job you can’t turn off.

Most jobs you do until your time there ends, and afterwards you stop that job and move on to another. For example, I was once a construction worker. I spent years doing just about every type of construction there is from concrete to trim work. At thirty-three, I stopped working in construction and became an IT guy. Someday I will stop do that as well and I will no longer be and IT guy. That doesn’t mean that I won’t use those skills from time to time, especially the construction skills, but it won’t be who I am anymore. At seventeen I became a dad and while for the first two years I wasn’t able to be with my daughter as much as I wanted (Long story…lol), starting at nineteen I was a full-time parent. I took to being a dad the way a fish takes to water. It was like I was born to be their dad and I loved it, even the times when they would drive me insane. Through divorces and times of financial ruin, my kids were my life, and they never left my side for very long. I took them everywhere I went mostly and it was never a burden like it is so some people. By the time I was forty I had five kids and as of two years ago got married to a great woman and added three more children in the mix. All these children netted us, eleven grandchildren. All in all, our family Thanksgiving and Christmas last year was thirty-one people.

I have often thought I would like to relax and only be Papaw. The guy who lets you do things you’re not allowed to do. The guy who never raises his voice or jumps on you for being too loud. The guy so says “Leave those kids alone” to the parents, when they are doing something they shouldn’t be and the parent are getting on them. It sounds like a great job, but…I struggle to give up my first job. In my defense, we still have one living at home and he has a few years before he leaves the nest. The reality is though that being a Dad is who I am. Everywhere I go, I “Dad” people as my kids would say. If I am there, and your kids are misbehaving, I just might get on them about it. I don’t mean any disrespect or rudeness by it, in fact, I am trying to help. When I was growing, that’s people did. If you were out in public acting like a punk, there was always someone around to tell you to knock it off. Back then, though, parents didn’t get all offended and mad over it. My poor mother was always grateful I’m sure, when some guy in the grocery store looked at me, being a brat and wanting everything in sight, and said: “Hey boy, knock it off”. This would scare the crap out of me and I would do as they instructed me.

On the flip side, I am not all discipline. Often, I am the guy playing with the kids and making them rowdy. I have made many people cringe by spinning and flipping kids head over heels. I don’t know what is so exciting about flipping in the air, but most kids sure love it. Kids are fun and I love to see them laugh and enjoy life. Some kids have little fun and excitement in their lives, and if I can help them have a little fun, I am all in. The point to all this is that some men never stop being “Dad”. It doesn’t matter whose child you are or how old his kids are when he is in the room, he’s “Dad”. He doesn’t mean to offend you or make you mad, he’s just doing his job. No different from the man that would come in to fix your furnace or put new windows in your house. He’s had this job so long it has become who he is, so cut him some slack.

Cinema Review: The Gentlemen

Genre: Crime/Action

Rated: R

Release date: January 24, 2020 (USA)

Director: Guy Ritchie

Screenplay: Guy Ritchie

Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Henry Golding, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong, Eddie Marsan, Colin Farrell, and Hugh Grant

Pendleton Rants Reviews rating: 8/10

Over the weekend I got to take a rare trip to the cinema. I use to go a lot, but due to a massive two-year home improvement project, most of my movie watching is on Netflix and Prime. My son messaged me earlier in the week that he wanted us to go check out a movie called “The Gentlemen”. I had seen the previews for it and I am a big Charlie Hunnam fan so I was in. Right off the bat, the movie starts off with a little cliffhanger. This made me think there was some real promise here. Then most of the movie is told as narration between two of the main characters. As a writer, there is just something I love about a good narration store and in fact, my first published book was told in first-person narration. Having someone tell you the story is just really cool to me, so when this movie went in that direction, I again saw real promise. For an action some the pace was surprisingly steady, and it didn’t jump around from place to place just to give it an action feel. It was far from an adrenaline rush. It simply just told a good story at a steady pace.

One of the things people fail when creating a story or movie is that they fail to properly introduce you to the characters. In some movies, you just have to assume a lot when they introduce you to the characters. I really hate that and I think it is extremely lazy. This movie, however, didn’t do that. Thanks to good narration and some really great acting, you understood each character well. The acting was also top notice. You really believed all these people are who they are betraying. I expected as much from most of them because it does have an all-star cast, but none of them phoned it in. I don’t remember ever thinking that Guy Richie should cast someone else to play any of the characters. The story is well laid out and doesn’t jump around or leave big plot holes or “mystery boxes” as Hollywood likes to call them. I don’t want to go into the plot too much because that could spoil it for you and I don’t like to do that with good movies so I will just say it is about a man who is the King of the jungle and everyone wants his throne. Just know that it all makes sense and truly comes together well.

In conclusion that movie was well worth the money I paid to see it and I will for sure watch it again when it gets to Prime or Netflix. It doesn’t look like it made a ton of money, and that’s a shame because it should have. As an audience, I think we have to get back to watch well-done movies and not just rush to see something because it’s the next big thing. This truly was a good movie and if you have time to see it before it leave the cinema, do so.

6 Underground

Like a lot of people, I was off work on 1/1/2020 and this allowed me some much-needed time to catch up on some shows and watch one movie. That movie was 6 Underground on Netflix. It is a Netflix original and though it was never in the theaters, it should have been. While many critics slammed this movie, I completely disagree. I thought the movie was really good. It is a typical Michael Bay action flick but that’s not a bad thing. It was action packed and some of the best action scenes I have ever seen. The movie opens with a chase scene that rivals anything I’ve seen in the Fast and Furious franchise. The same for the fighting scenes, they were top-notch. The movie was also extremely funny. Ryan Reynolds showed up in his natural form and it worked perfectly for this film. I enjoy watching this guy on screen any chance I get. He reminds me a lot of Bruce Willis in that he is incredibly funny but able to turn on a dime and be a tough guy that can hold his own with just about anyone. The rest of the cast was pretty good as well. Most of them I don’t recognize from other movies or show, but they didn’t come across as rookie actors at all. Each of them brought something different to the screen. Unfortunately, the female characters came across a little flat a few times but I believe that has more to do with the state of female characters in Hollywood and less with the actresses playing the parts. When you try to turn the women into men, you end up with female characters who have very little depth and development. With that said, this movie wasn’t weighed down with a lot of wokeness and in fact, I don’t recall being overly aggravated by anything. The storyline is a little different and I suspect that is why so more of the “critics” didn’t like it. I found it refreshing to not have the same stale story telling. We get little pieces of each characters’ back story in the form of flashbacks. Flashbacks are nothing new but they are done a little different in this movie. It really reminded me of a TV series. You got just enough about each one to keep you interested and wanting more. Over all I would give the move an easy 4.5 out of 5 and I am looking forward to a sequel. Let’s hope it does well enough to prompt Netflix to follow it up with one.

That’s my take on 6 Underground, what did you think?