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John Slattery and Jon Hamm of Madmen
Mad Men, NOT the best show on television.
What do you tell yourself at night, when you lay your head down, that allows you to wake up in the morning pretending that you're not the bad guy? - Boyd Crowder to Raylin Givens.
Appreciation of creative work is always in the eye of the beholder. There is no objective way of say something is good, much less the best. But for me, Justified (with apologies to Mad Men and Game of Thrones), the FX television show based on stories written by Elmore Leonard, is the best show on television today.

At first blush, Justified has more in common with the more generally proclaimed "best show on television" Mad Men, set in the turbulent 1960s, than say Game of Thrones, set in the fantasy world of Westeros. But I see it differently.

The greatness of Justified depends very much on a mythical place, a Western cinema place. It evokes, for me, such great films as Sam Peckinpaugh's Ride The High Country, John Ford's The Searchers, Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven, even Sergio Leone's Once Upon A Time in the West. And not just because the lead character, Raylin Givens, played wonderfully by Timothy Olyphant, wears a cowboy hat. Instead, it uses the mores and expectations of that genre and twists them to excellent creative ends.

Continued on the other side.

Justified's use of this "new" Western idea is neither novel nor unique. However, it brings a special twist that makes it compelling, not just as a creative work, but as social commentary. I am referring to the setting—rural Harlan County, Kentucky, in the heart of Appalachia.

Placing the story in Harlan County necessarily puts the story in the middle of any number of issues. Here is how Elmore Leonard explains it:

ALLEN BARRA: To hell! I love it that the actors all seem so much like people from Harlan County.

LEONARD: You have to remember that places like Harlan County are where the bosses in Miami and Detroit get a lot of their product from, the stuff they sell in the cities, and that some of these backwoods places are among the biggest drug-producing centers in the country.

BARRA: Where did you go for your background on Harlan County?

LEONARD: I was very moved by Barbara Kopple’s 1976 documentary Harlan County, USA, about the Brookside strike, where 180 coal miners and their wives fought a huge coal company, risked everything and paid a hard price for basic rights.

BARRA: Isn’t that where the term “gun thugs,” which is used so often in Justified, started?

LEONARD: Yes. Miners who were working under killer conditions were shot at while picketing. That’s where the term came from. I also found good material in a 1967 book called Stinking Creek, about Knox County, Kentucky. It’s a heartbreaking book with photos of the people who lived there. And judging from the pictures, it’s a hard place to live. It’s aptly named, but like Harlan County, people call it home. [Emphasis supplied.]

The main characters in Justified all live in or come from Harlan County, and the depiction is such that you cannot escape that who they are is a function of where they came from. In his review of the finale of this Season 4, Todd vander Werffe of Grantland writes:

In the end, those choices made and not made, those roads taken and not taken, are the true ghosts that haunt these characters and Justified itself. While Season 4 may not have had a performance as immediately electrifying as Margo Martindale’s work as Mags Bennett in the show’s second season or anything as ambitious plot-wise as last season’s cavalcade of villains, it ended up being surprisingly deep and thematically rich, all without seeming to break a sweat. And so much of that richness came from the way the series used its increasingly tangled backstory and Harlan’s bloody history to suggest that holes in walls might be smoothed over, but whatever was hidden behind them won’t go away so easily. [Emphasis supplied.]
To trot out a line much used from Shakespeare's The Tempest:
Whereof what's past is prologue; what to come,
In yours and my discharge.
Justified argues, I would posit, that the ghosts of the past define our future. Are there apparent choices? Yes. Are there real choices? Certainly. But our past leads us to the point where the choices, such as they are, are offered to us. A study in gray. But in the Elmore Leonard style.

There is no way to describe or do justice to Justified in this one post, and I will not attempt to try. The only way is to watch it. I urge you to do so if you can. If you do, make sure to catch Margo Martindale as Mags Bennett in Season 2:


In elevating Justified as I have, I mean no disrespect to Mad Men or Game of Thrones or any other scripted show on television (well, maybe to some of them). In many ways, Mad Men and GoT should be more appealing to me.

Mad Men is set in a world, though removed from my time, more familiar to me—that of the big city office (the type of office where I first started my professional career). And many times, Mad Men works very well. (Though this season's first episode strikes me as a fail.)

Especially appealing is the character of Peggy Olson, the former secretary of Don Draper, turned trailblazing female creative director at a rival ad firm. I confess that her evolution on the show is one of the most interesting things ever presented on television.

But the heart of the show—the trials and travails of Don Draper—have become quite a bore to me. Not only do I not care, I am quite bored. Where does the story go? What is it telling us?

I also find Mad Men's dips into the social issues of the 60s (other than Peggy Olson) to be cartoonishly poor. Of course, John Slattery's performance as Roger Sterling is always entertaining. But Mad Men just bores me now for the most part.

With regard to Game of Thrones, at its best, it is rousing adventure and fun machinations. Peter Drinklage's Tyrion Lannister is GoT's Roger Sterling—he has all the best lines. But when it bogs down, it really bogs down. Not a great show to me.

Finally, an honorable mention to Breaking Bad, which ends its run this summer.  A terrific show because Bryan Cranston has created an unforgettable character, Walter White. Show creator Vince Gilligan described Breaking Bad as "a story about a man who transforms himself from Mr. Chips into Scarface.'"

I think that says it all.    

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Comment Preferences

  •  i LOVE elmore leonard (8+ / 0-)

    ever see out of sight? as fun as his books are, that movie is better than the book.

    haven't watched much of justified. I should probably start taping it.

     i'm head over heels in love with mad men. i'm one of the few who love betty and can't stand don. disappearing from sally's birthday party and not picking up the cake? and then showing up w/ some other family's dog? wtf? btw- no need for a spoiler alert- that was all from season 1.

    i'm on team betty.

    "...i also also want a legally binding apology." -George Rockwell

    by thankgodforairamerica on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:07:30 PM PDT

    •  i don't really hate don (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      walkshills

      the episode where he and peggy camped out in his office while he tried not to answer the phone just came back to mind. I do love don. I just don't like how people hate betty- don treated her like shit for years and years- of course it made her act a little weird.

      "...i also also want a legally binding apology." -George Rockwell

      by thankgodforairamerica on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:29:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Justified is way better (7+ / 0-)

      Having lived through the era depicted by Mad Men I found the show inaccurate regarding style and attitudes of those times.

      But Justified seems to be very authentic, even though I've never lived in Kentucky. All I'm going by, mind you, are some of the politicians they have produced and sent proudly to DC.

      •  Kicks ass! I swear the lead character (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SixSixSix, thankgodforairamerica

        pulls a gun out of his ass to off or arrest some thug every episode.

        •  Yeah, but he never pulls first.... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          winkk, thankgodforairamerica

          Though as Boyd points out in the quote from Boyd above, the line is pretty damn thin.

          When you find yourself constantly barreling towards confrontations that can only end one of two ways (bad guy surrenders or bad guy gets shot), there seems to be a fair question as to whether or not you're truly one of the white hats. That one seems to really leave a mark on Raylan.

      •  Mad Men.... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Creosote, thankgodforairamerica

        I tried to like it but I also lived through that era and agree that I found it too inaccurate.  it felt wrong to me.

        Justified is sort of a guilty pleasure.  I hate violence but somehow enjoy how Rayland handles the shit that comes his way.  The characters he has to interact with make it unpredictable and enjoyable.  Boyd is a hoot!

        Never regret something that made you smile

        by Texnance on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:10:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, without knowing, it seems authentic (2+ / 0-)

        I've never been to Kentucky, let alone Harlan, but the show seems to understand the place and the people who live there.

        The exploitation of the mining companies, the legacy of strikes and company "gun thugs," the hustles and criminality people use to survive serious poverty.... These things are always simmering within the native Harlan characters. The writers have fleshed out a very real world, and the characters seem to be instilled with the essence and experiences of the people who inhabit the place.

        Again, I speak as a TV viewer who lives in California and has never been to KY. So it could be bunk, but it sure seems right.

    •  You will LOVE Justified. I think, anyway. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      one of 8, thankgodforairamerica

      I know a lot of Leonard's screen adaptations have been shitty, but Justified gets it right. Elmore Leonard gives a lot of input to the show, and he even wrote a collection of Raylan Givens short stories specifically for the show. The writers say they operate with a "What Would Elmore Do" philosophy, and I believe they mean it.

      The movie version of Out of Sight is excellent. It was in good hands with Steven Soderbergh directing and George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez as Jack Foley and Karen Sisco respectively. Let's see, Tarantino's treatment of Rum Punch ("Jackie Brown") was also outstanding. The more recent 3:10 to Yuma was good. I like the movie version of Get Shorty, though I know not everyone does. Unless I'm missing something, most of the rest of the adaptations have been mediocre at best, and obnoxiously bad at worst.

  •  I'm not giving up just yet on Mad Men (4+ / 0-)

    even though Don's continuing ennui and horndog proclivities make it very, very tempting.  And Betty--I don't care about her one bit.  Write her off the show.

    "Maybe we should march on the campus of the electoral college and occupy it until they change their vote"--some wingnut, Worldnetdaily

    by chicago minx on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:07:46 PM PDT

  •  I just read something about Justified, which I (13+ / 0-)

    have never watched, but it is available for streaming so I can easily catch up.

    Thanks for the recommendation.

    Safe flight.

    We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty - Edward R. Murrow

    by Susan Grigsby on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:08:10 PM PDT

  •  You are entitled to your opinion (5+ / 0-)

    (everyone's a critic).

    And I have yet to see GoT on TV.

    However, I've read the novels...several times.

    And I can make a case for them as the best political theater out there -- the books, y'know, b/c no, haven't seen the shows.

    But oy, the political theater in the stories.  And how Railroad Martin tells 'em.

    Fuckin' brilliant.

    Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

    by Youffraita on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:09:37 PM PDT

    •  the show brought me to the books (6+ / 0-)

      just finished #2 and began #3 immediately after. totally hooked.

      FWIW, the show is an excellent adaptation. the casting is brilliant. only sacrifices are to cut back the number of characters because its just not feasible to bring them all into a TV show. otherwise its the best George RR Martin could have hoped for.

      •  Oh, yeah, have to cut down the cast (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kj in missouri, FiredUpInCA

        Otherwise, well...cast of thousands, really.

        And you almost need a flow chart to keep track of all the royal families.

        Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

        by Youffraita on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:48:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  My rule is the following: (0+ / 0-)

        Any movie/television show based on a book, I try not to watch unless I read the book. The exception is Call the Midwife on PBS and to a lesser extent the aformentioned Justified. This is why I haven't watched Game of Thrones.

        Also, did George RR Martin pay homage to J.R.R. Tolkien by putting the double R's in his name or does the RR actually mean something?

        "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

        by Nedsdag on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:09:42 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  he's said (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          one of 8

          that he's run into many George Martin's in his career, and even a few George R. Martin's. wouldn't surprise me if he added the extra R as a nod to Tolkien, he supposedly reads the Lord of the Rings like some people read the Bible.

    •  GOT is best in book form (0+ / 0-)

      The HBO series tries hard and succeeds in the same way that the Harry Potter movies succeeded. But I honestly would rather re-read the books. HBO should have considered doing what did with True Blood...write a "fictionalized" version of the original fiction, especially given RR's SLOWNESS in turning out books.

      Justified is pretty darn good...only 6 episodes into first season. Not sure it will be as good as something like The Wire (IMHO the best series ever) but if it keeps getting better with each new season it could be contender.

      •  I agreed, though I wickedly await the Red Wedding (0+ / 0-)

        No spoilers for those that haven't read the books, but it could be an epic moment on TV

        Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

        by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:55:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Youffraita, you know I think GOT is (5+ / 0-)

      garbage in book form... but the TV series is much better.  So if you really liked the GoT books (I still say they suck) you might be even more impressed with the TV show.  If you're not, that will be illuminating.  

      And the actor that plays Tyrion really is fantastic.  It's sad to think that there are few good parts like that that will ever be available to the actor, Peter Dinklage.  This is his moment.  Good for him that he has seized it so effectively.

      •  hahaha, Dumbo, you and I (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dumbo

        are having the exact same argument I have with Tara the Antisocial Social Worker -- except in reverse.

        Tara says that the novel The First Wives Club is better than the movie.  I say it's the movie that's SO much better.

        I'm pretty sure you'd agree with me b/c Olivia Goldsmith can't write her way outta the paper bag her novel is scribed on.

        Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

        by Youffraita on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:59:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Justified, is decidedly one of my favorite hours (6+ / 0-)

    of television. These days the tube is off way more than it is on when I'm home. Which says a lot about the offerings served up on most of the channels.

    Fuck me! He made it. Will Scarlet

    by dagolfnut on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:10:05 PM PDT

  •  My father was born and raised in those (5+ / 0-)

    Hills. Used to visit relatives near Harlan as a child, which makes Justified an extra special treat.

    Confession time: When I'm not ranting about politics, I write romance novels

    by teresahill on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:11:02 PM PDT

  •  I prefer The Walking Dead (6+ / 0-)

    for its warm and fuzzy depiction of human nature under duress.

  •  i tried to watch mad men (6+ / 0-)

    just the kind of show I thought i'd dig...couldn't stand it

    Howard Fineman needs to have a chat with Chris Cilizza about Grecian Formula and its effects on punditry

    by memofromturner on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:13:06 PM PDT

  •  Justified is easily (12+ / 0-)

    the best thing on TV. Well except for maybe Southland.

    The whole mountaintop removal mining was thing in season 2 was spot on.

    Another great show this year, though in a more fun way and not as 'realistic' was Justified is Banshee.

    Seriously.. watch Banshee. Just have your kids in bed first.

  •  Excellent show. Third season delves deeper... (7+ / 0-)

    ...into the hierarchy of crime.  Boyd, Ava and his gang may seem like hardcore thugs, but as we learned at the end of the season, ultimately they are beholden to someone.  And that someone is the wealthy and politically connected of Harlan County, those who live on Clover Hill.  

    The Clover Hill residents are neatly juxtaposed against the "Hill people" - what outsiders would call the "Hillbillys" of Appalachia.  Both groups are insular, isolated from the rest of the world, and distrustful of outsiders.  

    Ultimately, Boyd and Ava learn that no matter how rich they become, no matter how powerful, they will never be accepted as legitimate in Clover Hill.  Everything they do and accumulate is merely a facade;  they will never be able to transcend their class to enter another.  They will always serve their political and economic masters.    

  •  Interesting--I've watched thru season 3 & hadn't (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k9disc, p gorden lippy

    seen enough of that Faulkneresque return-of-repressed-Harlan-county-history thing to, in my view, boost the show quite to the level of MM or Breaking Bad.  Though I will check out Season 4 on your rec.  To me both the writing and acting of Justified are still a few notches below the absolute-best shows--actually reminding me a lot of the Showtime dramas like Dexter (which I watch happily, but I wouldn't put it up for Emmies).

    Last year I rewatched the three seasons of Deadwood, and THAT is a show where Tim Olyphant is truly on fire (along with the rest of the cast).  Going back to Justified after that,  it seemed like Olyphant was sort of coasting.  But I can believe that he's picking up speed as he goes along.

    And fwiw I do agree that the non-Don-Draper characters are carrying the weight of interest in MM these days.  Roger Sterling on acid was one of the great moments in television history...    

  •  Wrong but at least you give Breaking Bad a mention (7+ / 0-)

    But seriously, GOT is the best for good reason though there are a lot of good ones on Sunday and Justified is good; however, the fact that you feel the need to tear GOT down shows it's better.

    Mad Men has gone downhill though I still watch it. I won't get mad at you for that. Breaking bad deserved all the emmys it has won and then some. Giancarlo Esposito was robbed.

    I don't negotiate grand bargains with deficit terrorists!

    by priceman on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:20:08 PM PDT

  •  Whoa, Armando. Never knew you were the critic! (4+ / 0-)

    Impressive lists.

    Well podna, that maybe so about this program, but the best shows on Hulu are   :)

    We don't watch TV, but have watched HULU since retiring and getting high speed internet.

    Have several to rec to kossacks , shows with political overtones from other cultures, albeit other western,  perspectives. Drama and spy stuff woven with current political themes, good for values clarification and introspection.  Good stuff.

    UK -   http://www.hulu.com/...
           and
     http://www.hulu.com/...
    Denmark-  http://www.hulu.com/...
                       and
               http://www.hulu.com/...

    Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

    by divineorder on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:21:24 PM PDT

    •  Theres a lot of good things out of UK and (0+ / 0-)

      BBC America for that matter.

      Copper was really interesting to me, and now Orphan Black is leaving me wanting more every week.

      UK Has tons of good stuff. Sherlock first of all. Benedict Cumberbatch is spectacular in this, and most any Kossack would likely love it. Then they have Luther for fans of The Wires Idris Elba.

      And while on the topic of non american stuff, a shoutout to MasterChef Australia for being the best cooking show in the world.

    •  Would love to see the Danish original of (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder, a2nite

      the AMC show "The Killing". Has to be better than the AMC version, which is such a mess. Any links to that?

      If "elitist" just means "not the dumbest motherfucker in the room", I'll be an elitist! - David Rees from "Get Your War On".

      by Oaktown Girl on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:57:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Armando is angling to be the new Ebert. (0+ / 0-)
  •  Yeah bitch (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian S

    Magnets!

  •  I watched an hour of 'Game of Thrones" (6+ / 0-)

    Looked like soft core porn to me.

    Also, I kept waiting for Sean Bean to say, "And what of Frodo?"

  •  Under appreciated (10+ / 0-)

    Great show and except for Margo Martindale's emmy never even nominated for an award.   Everyone's perfect, Raylan is so cool and the Boyd actor who was so memorably loathsome in the Shield outdoes himself here.

    •  Link to an article that agrees (9+ / 0-)

      here from July 2012:

      The nominations for the 64th annual prime-time Emmy awards were announced Thursday morning, and the superlative series starring Timothy Olyphant as U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens showed up in just two categories -- guest actor in a drama (Jeremy Davies) and art direction. That's it.

      Olyphant wasn't nominated for lead actor in a drama. Walton Goggins wasn't nominated for supporting actor. Neal McDonough, off-the-chart scary-good as Detroit mobster Robert Quarles, wasn't nominated for guest actor in a drama series.

      Frustrating, to be sure, but none of those misses drives the needle into the red-shaded range indicating outrage. The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences accomplished that when "Justified" was not among six shows nominated for best drama.

      If "elitist" just means "not the dumbest motherfucker in the room", I'll be an elitist! - David Rees from "Get Your War On".

      by Oaktown Girl on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:02:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Walton Goggins was up for an Emmy. (4+ / 0-)

      But he lost to Peter Dinklage of Game of Thrones.

      "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

      by Nedsdag on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:13:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I believe Olyphant was nominated... (0+ / 0-)

      Could be wrong. If Jacob Pitts isn't nominated for SOMETHING, just based on his interactions with Colt in Season 4 alone, it will be a travesty in my opinion.

  •  Romney liked Justified ... ??? (3+ / 0-)

    I remember Romney listing Justified when asked his fav shows. I was very surprised. Someone with a better search ability might want to find that - quite a character reflection; the bad guys are very bad and no one has a good motivation.
    Justified isn't about cowboy mentality at all! It's about business and class. There are motivations of money, position, and respect all glued to their home lands. Cowboys were about getting by, drifting, moorless, and maybe revenge/justice.

  •  I do enjoy Justified,, (8+ / 0-)

    but it really doesn't hold a candle to The Wire, a show I only recently started watching. At least the first season is on Netflix

    "Remember, Republican economic policies quadrupled the debt before I took office and doubled it after I left. We simply can't afford to double-down on trickle-down." Bill Clinton

    by irate on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:37:31 PM PDT

  •  I tried Justified and I just couldn't get (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dallasdoc, a2nite, FiredUpInCA

    Into it.  I like GOT books and the series.  I seldom become excessively attached to entertainment, but I am a Throney.  During a discussion a few days ago about the United States full faith and credit I realized we are Lannisters.  A Lannister always pays their debts.  I hate the Lannisters but oops, I was born a Lannister.

    My son made our house sigil on the Game of Thrones website, our house motto is "Don't Run, You'll Just Die Tired".  It is a stolen motto but I dare not say from who on a liberal website....just a bunch of smack talkers though.

  •  Justified is must see for me (4+ / 0-)

    The writers and cast are unrivalled. Game of Thrones is close for sheer entertainment.

    I never got into Mad Men. I grew up working class in the 50s and the show just leaves me cold...

    Most truths are so naked that people feel sorry for them and cover them up, at least a little bit. --Edward R. Murrow

    by chuckvw on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:38:44 PM PDT

  •  Justified is excellent... (5+ / 0-)

    And by that, I also mean filled with excellence. The cast, the writing, the dialogue, the back stories and relationships. IMO, season 4 was its finest.

  •  I'll have to check it out. My favorite show is (8+ / 0-)

    The Americans. Have you seen it? It's VERY interesting.

  •  Breaking Bad is best (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, mimi9, p gorden lippy

    but I agree that Justified is really good. I would tie it with Mad Men.
    Couldn't get into GoT at all

    If altar boys could get pregnant, contraception would be a sacrament.

    by tiponeill on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:56:23 PM PDT

  •  Best series ever: (0+ / 0-)

    "Upstairs, Downstairs" followed by "The Singing Detective"

    It's the Supreme Court, stupid!

    by Radiowalla on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:57:07 PM PDT

    •  Pennies Revisited... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Radiowalla, mimi9, FiredUpInCA

      Don't forget Brideshead Revisited and Pennies from Heaven.

      •  Ah, yes! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mimi9, FiredUpInCA

        Brideshead is another gem!  I actually bought it so I can watch it again and again.  "Jewel in the Crown" was another good one.

        Pennies from Heaven was excellent.  Anything by Dennis Potter is superb.  

        It's the Supreme Court, stupid!

        by Radiowalla on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:04:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Jewel in the Crown (0+ / 0-)

          The original novels are brilliant. Very deep portrayal of the British Raj. Beautifully written.

          Skepticism of all the elite institutions, not trust, is what required for successful leadership in this era. Digby

          by coral on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:15:45 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Best Series Ever? (3+ / 0-)

      Tough for me.. I'd probably end up choosing Black Adder or Monty Python.

      But outside of those two, I can think of soo many.   The Wire definitely stands out.

      Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

      by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:02:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I go with the Australian series Underbelly (0+ / 0-)

      The first season about the rise of Carl Williams from flunky to Melbourne's drug king  and his war with the Carlton Crew was epic.  The 2nd season was OK, but the third season about Sydney's Golden Mile and the rise of John Ibrahim, the trials of prostitute Kim Hollingsworth, and the story of Debbie Webb's whose harassment would lead to the exposure and downfall of the New South Wales police force was a great story.

      One does not simply walk into Mordor! One invites a gas driller in, and one’s land becomes Mordor. Chris From Balloon Juice

      by Mr Stagger Lee on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:16:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Disagree but.. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k9disc

    There are some great shows on TV.. Justified is one of them.

    To me, in no particular order:

    Game of Thrones (HBO)
    The Good Wife (CBS)
    Shameless (SHO)
    Homeland (SHO)
    Justified (FX)
    Archer (FX)
    Breaking Bad (AMC)
    Mad Men (AMC)
    Switched at Birth (ABCF)
    Walking Dead (AMC)

    Honorable mentions because I love them but they are pulp enjoyment:

    Supernatural, Lost Girl

    In general, as long as it's not a reality show, I'll give it a try.

    Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

    by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 04:59:25 PM PDT

    •  Good list (4+ / 0-)

      add Hell on Wheels, Southland and Sherlock and it would be damn near perfect.

      •  It's hard to consider Sherlock (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        k9disc, FiredUpInCA, p gorden lippy

        Which is completely and totally brilliant as a series, because it's so far really been what, 6 TV movies in a 3 movies per season format?   I don't know how to loop that in with 12/24 episode runs.   But it is fantastic.

        Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

        by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:04:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  hey now, size does not matter (3+ / 0-)

          but thats just how the British do their shows. They tend to be longer and no commercials, no bullcrap filler to please every segment of the audence and just straight to business awesomeness.

          At an hour and a half an episode that is still 4 and a half hours of tv. That is really not that far off of some american shows that have 8-10 40 to 1 hr episodes.

          Be it Luther, Misfits, Mirror Black, Sherlock, Wallander etc, its just how drama series tend to happen over there.

          •  It does make me miss (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            LieparDestin, FiredUpInCA

            The qualification of what used to be "Mini-Series" event television (Roots?)  Etc.   We just don't do that much.  

            I don't see Misfits or Luthor that way, they are 6 or sometimes 10 eps.. etc.   I'm OK with that, like Shameless/etc. which are 13.   But just 3 which are movie format doesn't strike me as a proper "series" but an event.. they can pour much more money and break them farther apart then how we view a series.

            Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

            by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:52:07 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •   Good point. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              FiredUpInCA

              John Adams would be a good example I guess. Or the Pillars of the Earth adaptation.

              I usually consider 'series' a multiple season event with a beginning middle and end to a particular set of events, only for the same characters etc to take on new evens the next go around all while having to deal with the consequences of the previous seasons.

              A miniseries is more of a longer movie to me.

              On a different note, I hear they are doing a Season 2 of the new Vikings show on History Channel. Glad thats one going to get more story-telling time.

              •  Agreed.. And Pillars of the Earth (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                LieparDestin

                Was a great miniseries.   Really worthwhile.  

                Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

                by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:39:40 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I think they did justice to the book (0+ / 0-)

                  for sure. I am just finishing up World Without End, and while it has its moments it feels a little rushed or something at times. I realize there is a lot of ground to cover but there is not a lot of time to come to know the characters.

    •  Walking Dead (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmservo433, dhshoops

      the first and last two episodes of each season are really awesome, and should encompass the entire season itself.

      Really, they should have four-episode seasons and call it a year.

    •  No Southland? No Downton Abbey? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmservo433, JayC

      Also, Scandal on ABC is another great show, particularly for the ensemble. Also, watch for a show called Suits on USA network which comes on during the summer and is a terrific show.

      I am eager to see what changes Aaron Sorkin will make on the HBO show Newsroom, a show with lots of potential, but had a tendency to be quite wordy in typical Sorkin fashion.

      "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

      by Nedsdag on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:18:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some of your examples (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        VA Breeze

        Really enjoyed Downton Abbey, but it's first season was far better than the following.

        Suits is a great/fun summer show; in the category with things like Burn Notice.. great blast of old school entertainment... definitely good for a hot Saturday off the DVR.

        Newsroom had such potential.. but outside of being wordy, it too often puts people into situations that seem ridiculous or just too happenstance.. "oh, by miracle circumstance, I know someone who knows the real story"..

        Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

        by Chris Reeves on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:42:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The quote that opens Armando's article ... (5+ / 0-)

    ... is actually the second time it is used. The first being a few moments before when Marshall Raylan Givens says it to his "prisoner" Boyd Crowder. So the quoted part is Boyd giving it back straight at him with a bit of vengeance and major irony. And therein lies a key theme of the show: the good guys and bad guys share more than one might, in a perfect wold, expect.

    Justified's Elmore Leonard-inspired writing is far superior to that of other shows now on TV. It is in the same league (though not quite the same caliber) as Aaron Sorkin.

    2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

    by TRPChicago on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:00:50 PM PDT

  •  I haven't had premium cable in years (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Satya1

    and don't watch any broadcast dramas so I have no way of telling. I recently saw the pilot for The Newsroom and really liked it. Other than that, and a few minutes of Mad Men and maybe one or two other shows, I don't think I've seen any of the "Second Golden Age of TV" shows.

    I watch the new Hawaii 5-O, a pretty silly and predictable show but easy to watch, especially the gorgeous shots of the island.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:01:10 PM PDT

    •  iTunes (0+ / 0-)

      You can buy entire series or episodes of most of these shows through iTunes. All the advantages of cable without the cost of cable (or the immense dreck available on cable).

      You have to wait for HBO shows, but lots of the others are released simultaneously with broadcast.

      Skepticism of all the elite institutions, not trust, is what required for successful leadership in this era. Digby

      by coral on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:19:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Better yet (0+ / 0-)

        I wait till my local library has them on DVD and then check them out. When I take to a show, I want to watch episodes in rapid succession, not weekly, and am willing to wait a year or two for that (and prefer to not pay for it :-) ). Never been much of a water cooler show converser.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:44:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  justified is the best-kept secret on TV. (4+ / 0-)

    I've watchd it from the beginning but whenever I mention it to anyone else, I mean, anyone else, they never heard of it and aren't interested in finding out.
    The Wire and Deadwood were great TV but they're over.  GOT is hard to follow. All the male characters, except Dinklage of course, look alike to me and many of the female ones too. I have to sit with my iPad and scroll the cast. Who  is this now, I'm always asking?  Mad Men doesn't grab me as deeply as it does my friends.

    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please -- Mark Twain

    by OnePingOnly on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:03:46 PM PDT

  •  Pfft. Clearly The Walking Dead is the best show (0+ / 0-)

    On televisions today.

    "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

    by MargaretPOA on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:06:36 PM PDT

    •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

      it is entertaining tv most of the time for sure, but it really does not belong in 'the greats'. The writing is atrocious as times, the characters for the most part are unlikable and this last season was a complete mess. But it is far from a Justified, Southland, Shameless, Breaking Bad level of quality in writing, cast, and production value.

    •  But, really, production values are ho-hum. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LieparDestin

      I mean, these are dead people walking around. The stench must be ridiculous and the fly population ought to be staggering. So how is it that walkers just sneak up on these people?

      For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

      by Anne Elk on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:15:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  You obviously haven't been watching (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Walking Eye, a2nite, Satya1, pgm 01

    Archer.

    I watch TV to escape reality. And Archer does that for me. Other than Archer, I only watch news and science programming. And DAMN the news for making me watch.

    There is nothing more exciting than the truth. - Richard P. Feynman

    by pastol on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:08:21 PM PDT

  •  Enlightened (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kat68

    As much as I like the others, it's no contest. Mike White crafted a show that was progressive in it's worldview, stocked with characters of depth and complexity and offered up no easy answers.

    "Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies."

    by ILDem on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:09:28 PM PDT

  •  Breaking Bad is the most riveting show on TV (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MsPlasmodesmata, Ian S, mimi9

    easily the best drama since The Sopranos, and frankly with less off episodes. The photography and art direction are also on par with a theatrical film.

    I love Boardwalk Empire for the 1920s setting, but it's ultimately a low brow B movie in A list clothes. A sad waste of Michael Shannon too.

    Mad Men, I agree with you. I watched it religiously at first, but the last season (and this one so far) have been mediocre. It's time for them to wrap things up, and I'd like to see Jon Hamm in more theatrical parts.

    Never watched Game of Thrones.  

  •  Love this show to death (6+ / 0-)

    They don't waste any characters and drain every drop of awesomeness out of the dialog.  Its like reading a new Elmore Leonard paperback every week.  And Tim Olyphant and Walton Goggins were each born to play Raylan and Boyd.

    One of my favorite scenes (mild spoilers.) Best quality I could find.

    Follow Me on Twitter! https://twitter.com/#!/ZeddRebel

    by TarantinoDork on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:16:22 PM PDT

    •  He should've won an Emmy the year he was (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pgm 01

      nominated, but I think the Game of Thrones fans will argue that Peter Dinklage deserved it.

      "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

      by Nedsdag on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:20:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Goggins is a brilliant actor (7+ / 0-)

    He stole The Shield from Michael Chiklis in its last two seasons.
    I'll never forget that scene in the finale when he's buying what supplies he'll need for his "family meeting". The Shield, with the exception of season 4, was the best cop show ever made. Period.

  •  Mad Men marathon (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FiredUpInCA

    and  when I watched it felt like my era fly before my eyes.  They got the clothes, furniture, attitudes  and everything down pat.   I quit watching after awhile.  Hadn't seen Justified,   Will check it out.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:22:15 PM PDT

  •  False. Black bear. Bears eat beets. (0+ / 0-)

    The answer is Archer. End of story. No argument can be made against it and how good it is. :)

  •  Justified. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FiredUpInCA, p gorden lippy

    Will check it out.
    Mad Men never fails to entertain, but in the same way one might enjoy and Alex Katz painting or Peggy Lee singing "Is That All there Is?".
    Game of Thrones has great landscapes, set design and costumes, but they kill off all of the characters....

    The Wire is my all time favorite.

  •  Best shows on TV. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mr Stagger Lee

    For those of us without premium channels (I only have Starz with my basic), I heartily nominate The Americans, a spy drama about Soviet sleeper agents living a middle class life with their children and neighbors not knowing what they do.  It sounds like a premise for a silly sitcom, but it's not, being gritty and suspenseful.  The schism between their home life and their spy life is one aspect, and the degrading and dangerous things they are called upon to do, as the Cold War heats up in the early eighties under Reagan.  We also get to follow what is happening at the FBI office which should be looking for them, but has its head up its ass because of ambitious careerism and sloppy personal lives, which the two sleeper agents exploit.  They pass each other in the night at times, like subs running silent.

    Also: two best comedies on TV: THE WORKAHOLICS and IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA.

    One great youtube except from It's Always Sunny, where Dennis explains The Dennis System for acquiring undying love from women.

  •  FX great shows (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kj in missouri, coral

    Never understood why they dropped "Damages". Maybe story lines were too close for comfort and disturbed corporate sponsors.

    •  Lights Out (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rolandz, nswalls

      was another one on FX that got cancelled too soon.

      The good news is that FX is splitting into several channels, one for Comedy one for Dramas and one more that I cant remember what for. They have announced 25 new shows in the works and I for one, cannot wait.

  •  I heart Boyd. (4+ / 0-)

    words'll get me every time and that man can talk.   @;-)

    "From single strands of light we build our webs." ~kj

    by kj in missouri on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:39:48 PM PDT

    •  Walter Goggins (5+ / 0-)

      He was absolutely fantastic in The Shield as well.

      To top it off, he is a Democrat

      Goggins is an avid photographer. He has showcased some of his work on a blog that he created when he took time off work and travelled throughout India. He is also an avid traveller – spending much of his free time on the road around the world – India, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Central America, and Morocco.

      In politics, Goggins has been active in the Democratic Party; in the 2008 presidential election, he campaigned for Senator Barack Obama, going door-to-door in neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles. He is also known to be a fan of the work of former president, Jimmy Carter. He is also active in various non-profit organizations that range from environmental to humanitarian work. He is a regular at GLOBAL GREEN USA events and activities. He connected to environmental issues through his significant other, Nadia Conners, who directed the documentary The 11th Hour about the environmental crisis.

  •  Justified is my favorite-- (4+ / 0-)

    sorry to see the season end.

    Now I'm looking forward to my fall favorite:
    Sons of Anarchy.

  •  Ahhh...you've noticed! (3+ / 0-)

    Glad to see I'm not the only one.

  •  Damn (4+ / 0-)

    Finally, someone who agrees with me. I have been trying to get everyone I know to watch Justified. I finally got my husband hooked. Recently, I have found him actually committing lines of dialogue to memory, especially those spoken by Boyd Crowder.

    I have been wondering when the various awards committees will recognize this show. It deserves a best drama nomination more than many of the shows that continually are nominated.

    Thanks for this diary. Glad to see this show get some attention.

    "...in a society governed passively by free markets and free elections, organized greed always defeats disorganized democracy." Matt Taibbi

    by Getreal1246 on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:47:45 PM PDT

  •  I love all three, but yes, I agree (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kj in missouri, p gorden lippy

    If I gauge by the breadth of my reactions to any single given episode, and how much I am still thinking about and taking apart the episode two days later, then "Justified" wins.

    The braying sheep on my TV screen make this boy shout -- make this boy scream -- I'm going underground...

    by jamfan on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:50:48 PM PDT

  •  I Was Fond Of "Leverage" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, Nedsdag, one of 8

    Because it was written the creator of the excellent blog "Kung Fu Monkey," who described his 20 years of paying his dues, then "suddenly" having modest success.  After only a couple shows, he found he had some obsessive fans who wanted to know every characters full bio etc.

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:50:59 PM PDT

    •  I was saddened when Leverage ended. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LieparDestin, bernardpliers, one of 8

      I loved that show.

      Some of my British friends tell me Leverage was an American version of a British show called Hustle. I've seen both, but I liked Leverage better.

      "Do they call you Rush because you're in a rush to eat?" -"Stutterin' John" Melendez to Rush Limbaugh.

      by Nedsdag on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:22:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Kung Fu Monkey: "Wait, Aren't You Scared?" (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KenBee

        http://kfmonkey.blogspot.com/...

        I am just not going to wet my pants every time some guys get arrested in a terror plot. I will do my best to stay informed. I will support the necessary law enforcement agencies. I will take whatever reasonable precautions seem, um, reasonable. But I will not be terrorized. I assume that the terror-ists would like me to be terror-ized, as that is what is says on their nametag, rather than, say, wanting me to surrender to ennui or negative body image, and they're just coming the long way around.

        Osama Bin Laden got everything on his Christmas list after 9/11 -- US out of Saudi Arabia; the greatest military in the world over-extended, pinned down and distracted; the greatest proponent of democracy suddenly alienated from its allies; a US culture verily eager to destroy freedoms that little scumfuck could never even dream to touch himself -- I would like to deny him the last little check on the clipboard, i.e. constant terror. I panic, they win. To coin a phrase, Osama Bin Laden can suck my insouciance.

        I am absolutely buffaloed by the people who insist I man up and take it in the teeth for the great Clash of Civilizations -- "Come ON, people, this is the EPIC LAST WAR!! You just don't have the stones to face that fact head-on!" -- who at the whiff of an actual terror plot will, with no apparent sense of irony, transform and run around shrieking, eyes rolling and Hello Kitty panties flashing like Japanese schoolgirls who have just realized that the call is coming from inside the house!

        I may have shared too much there.

        There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

        by bernardpliers on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:00:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  in all seriousness, (4+ / 0-)

    i've said the same.  Justified is the best show on television.  Reminds me of "Winter's Bone," if Winter's Bone were a series.  

    What'shisname Clover Hill dude to Ellen May, 'I made you this orgami flower, bird, whatever.'   Ellen May, 'Where did you learn to do that?'   Clover Hill dude, 'YouTube.'

    Detroit Dead Guy (uses half-a-word when a whole word would do) to Boyd (who uses 20 words when 5 would do), "I'm going to need Google Translator if we're going to continue to have these conversations."

    Margo Martindale got the chance to be brilliant, brilliant! as Mags Bennett.  I wouldn't mind seeing Ava travel that road just to envision a young Mags.

    "Stay frosty."

    Oh, but i haven't said anything to convince anyone to turn it, just blabbing to the choir.   i love the show.   it's pitch perfect.

    "From single strands of light we build our webs." ~kj

    by kj in missouri on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 05:51:36 PM PDT

  •  Bravo (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kj in missouri, p gorden lippy

    Justified is incredible and although it's critically acclaimed, I say it doesn't get the recognition it deserves.

  •  Mad Men & Breaking Bad nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy
  •  Agreed Justified is awesome, a timeshifted ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LieparDestin, p gorden lippy

    ... continuation of Sheriff Bullock and Deadwood into the 20+th century.

    It's hard to say who is best, I put the Soprano's at number 1, and The Wire at number 2, and I slip Stargate (all 3) in 3rd. From there.... we have a true wealth of amazing...

    Justified
    Game of Thrones
    Breaking Bad
    Walking Dead
    Madmen
    Deadwood
    Rescue Me
    The Shield
    Rome
    Homeland
    Dexter

    .... and if it puts a couple more seasons like the first under it's belt... House of Cards

    That HBO and AMC and FX and Showtime have taken the risk to give innovative production companies a chance to prove themselves has been a great evolution in TV.

  •  Someone beat me to The Americans... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    delver rootnose

    very well acted/written.

    Best show though (currently) is probably Breaking Bad. I'll have to check out Justified when I get the chance/time.

    Mad Men will get better...every season starts out somewhat slowly.

    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are." --Homer Simpson

    by dhshoops on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:08:56 PM PDT

  •  Breaking Bad is Shakespearean tragedy. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    delver rootnose, one of 8, Iberian, coral

    My all-time favorite.

    For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

    by Anne Elk on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:11:02 PM PDT

    •  Breaking bad (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Anne Elk

      Is the best show still on tv has down.

    •  Breaking Bad brilliant arc (0+ / 0-)

      Characters start out totally sympathetic and slowly turn into people who are morally abhorrent. Very believable TV, very true to our times.

      I preferred the sociological depth of The Wire, but BB is extremely well-conceived and well-written.

      Skepticism of all the elite institutions, not trust, is what required for successful leadership in this era. Digby

      by coral on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:24:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  with all due respect (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kj in missouri

    a series based on existing material always has a leg up over original material

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights for support in dealing with grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:11:45 PM PDT

    •  yes, but! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TrueBlueMajority, pgm 01

      the series writers are expanding what was a fairly minor character in Leonard's canon, to Leonard's approval.   the writers have WWLD carved on their laptops, i read.  

      what was once one character has become a collaborative, on-going creation.

      "From single strands of light we build our webs." ~kj

      by kj in missouri on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:15:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks Armando (0+ / 0-)

    Yesterday we went to get a video/DVD, (no TV anymore cause I'm a nut case) and I was drawn to Justified but had no idea what it was about or if it was just another violence porn show with big guns, torture and no redeeming value so I passed it by. The picture was intriguing however and I like the actors.  

    One of the best TV shows I have ever watched was because of your recommendation. It was 'The Wire' hands down the best TV series ever in imo. That led me to 'Generation Kill' a HBO mini series about the Irag war by the same people, another great show about 'the world as we find it'.

    I'm don't like Mad Men it fucking pisses me off as I have to deal with the current powerful mad men in real life real time.. Why make the soulless, immoral yuppie assholes of another era hip. The modern version bills itself as sophisticated and inevitable but man it sucks as a way forward.

    Crown of Thrones we rented it and turned it off halfway through the first episode. It's view of humans is 'the dark side', violence with no reason other then that's how humans are. I reject this.  My sister in law who is a 'screw or get screwed' (albeit a sometimes Democrat)  dick recommended it as she said it shows you what human nature is about . No thanks this is some kind of 21 dressed up in costume and passed off as the way we are. Not my cup o tea.

    So thanks and I'll rent it as soon as I finish watching Slesinger's 'Sunday Bloody Sunday' and  an old 70's video with Jack Nicholson called 'Going South'. The two videos I found in 'new arrivals' after going through the new releases and finding too many guns and horrors and anything of interest clipped with a 'Sorry Out on Rental". Justified was available but I had no idea other then the cover which looked good. No big fucking gun or Gothic horrors.

    Even though I'm doing a get off my lawn old curmudgeon thing here I have a movie recommend that while dark is just a great modern movie, Winters Bone.

    I do like noir and am an avid mystery reader. Elmore Leonard combines the best of Americana cultural satire and weaves a plot that is always both hilarious and tragic. Gonna go get Justified.        

     

    •  re: (no TV anymore cause I'm a nut case) (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      shaharazade

      I'm a nut case also - like in cable bills made me nuts! and my wife told me to do something about it, like explore other options. We were paying over $70 a month and nearing the end of a two year commitment to the cable company.

      Here's what we did:
      We bought a ROKU box, about the size of a couple cell phones stacked on top of one another - cost $70, one time - it gets signals from our home wifi, which we already use for laptops, so no additional expense there.

      We signed up for Netflix, then later Hulu, each $7.99 a month.

      So, instead of $70 a month, we paid $70 one time plus $16 a month for much the same service.

      ROKU has various private channels besides the two I mentioned, and one in particular archives current news programs, so we're able to keep up with the likes of MSNBC and AP and many others, even some local stations, but with a couple hours delay because of the archiving.

      Except you can't get HBO, unless you also subscribe to a cable tv service... corporations!

      Anyway, I'm a nut case for ROKU now...

      "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

      by Beastly Fool on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 10:57:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Loved Justified from episode 1...Timothy Oliphant (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy

    (sp?) is a great actor (If you haven't seen "Hitman," watch it...it's a great movie with a lead killer who is at once likable and frighteningly ruthless).  I fell off the series due to other obligations, but intend to catch up on it via Netflix.

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 06:44:01 PM PDT

  •  I'm a big fan of Justified (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy, pgm 01

    ...but it's a little disconcerting for me because many of its scenes are filmed in and around my community (Santa Clarita in Southern CA, which was also the shooting locale for the first three seasons of Weeds), so every time I see the characters standing in front of my favorite restaurant or filling up at a nearby gas station, it makes it a little hard for me to feel like I'm really in Kentucky.

    I also noticed as I was watching Season 3 (which I just finished) that the writers seemed to be bringing in a lot of characters whose sole function seemed to be to die at the end of the episode. In fact, I believe that, on average, there are more deaths per episode in this show than any other I watch (including Breaking Bad and Sons of Anarchy).

    Overall, though, I enjoy the series. The stories are interesting (if a bit convoluted at times) and the acting is consistently first-rate.

  •  Enjoying all the comments here (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy

    some shows to add to Tivo

    a series that has finished its run for this year but I just this week had time to watch some of the episodes is
    "Monday Morning" a medical drama on TNT
    I have been pleasantly surprised with some of the guest actor talent along with a good cast-hope it is picked  up for next season.

    There is just as much horse sense as ever, but the horses have most of it. ~Author Unknown

    by VA Breeze on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:04:00 PM PDT

  •  Best show on TV: Game of Thrones (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pgm 01

    Best show no longer on TV:  Terriers

    You're welcome.

    When extra-terrestrial beings make their first appearance on our planet, and ask for representatives of our species to best exemplify humanity, I'm sending a nurse, a librarian, and a firefighter.

    by Wayward Son on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:11:29 PM PDT

  •  Sorry, you're wrong (0+ / 0-)

    As much as I love Justified, it doesn't hold a candle to the depth and richness that Mad Men offers about every aspect of humanity imaginable.  The best dialog in Justified can make you laugh in delight, but the best dialog in Mad Men teaches you.

  •  Deadwood (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mr Stagger Lee, nswalls

    How can we have come this far without anyone mentioning Ian McShane in Deadwood.  A most incredible actor.  Playing a force of nature.  

    I went to Justified to follow the co-lead Timothy Oliphant of Deadwood, and yes, it is excellent, but Deadwood was sui generis.  The very best historical drama I could not let my grandkids watch. Never realized, until Deadwood,  that the word that won the West was different from the word that won the war.

    Still can’t let my grandkids watch it (Justified)  though.

    Reality ? What has that to do with Opera ?

    by greatferm on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:15:37 PM PDT

    •  Well the post (0+ / 0-)

      was about the best thing currently on tv. Deadwood was fantastic. Another great historical era show was Carnivale. I really miss that show.

      Recently there have been some other pretty decent period pieces... Hell On Wheels (I really love this show to), Copper covers post civil war New York city, Boardwalk Empire does a great job on the early years of Atlantic City, then theres Downon Abbey, Vikings. There really is a lot of good stuff out there these days if you can sort through all the garbage.

  •  justified (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy, nswalls, Armando

    the writing and the acting of justified have a consistency that amazes. olyphant could not be better cast. it has a nearly shakespearean irony in every line. it will be studied in future generations. along with the wire, as among the best of television ever. and consistently and in different ways in which plots change directions take on new overtones and flavors. these are all people i'm likely to have met at some point in life, and you really can't forget any of them. breaking bad as well. game of thrones is so well made and so well put together. some of it is transcendent but so much of it is soap box. in places you think it must be dubbed. it is so predictable. fun. like cotton candy and the midway. fun for its predictability. but justified, and breaking bad, and the wire don't leave you feeling you've seen it before ... and olyphant is easy on the eyes. tasty. raylin is not necessarily the stray you want to take home, but certainly appreciate petting ... just enough of him on view to make it interesting.

    definitely not an apology for gun control legislation or education reform. but enough fundamental traditional USA values of justice, equality, fairness, and compassion to make it genuine drama.

  •  you are so wrong... (0+ / 0-)

    ...Breaking Bad is the best show and justified is just another testosterone fueled my dick no I mean gun is bigger than yours type show.

    We Glory in war, in the shedding of human blood. What fools we are.

    by delver rootnose on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:40:13 PM PDT

  •  I don't watch a lot of television, but... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy

    ...I'm glad I decided to make an exception for Justified.  I knew it was going to be something special - even before the series started.  I've been hooked - right from Season 1, Episode 1.  And gladly so.  Considering the vast sea of mediocrity that characterizes the majority of television programming, I consider it little sacrifice of time or attention span to make sure that I tune in to FX at 10:00 pm on Tuesdays, every winter evening from January 'til April.

    MM

    Truly knowledge is power. And knowledge of spiritual things is spiritual power.

    by Mystic Michael on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 07:52:12 PM PDT

  •  It's been a guilty pleasure of mine. I don't watch (0+ / 0-)

    Mad Men - I just can't get myself to be interested (haven't tried it, but the show's era and social class are not things I'm interested in).
    But I watched the first 2 seasons of Justified online last year and found it riveting.
    I would never have admitted liking it -- after all it's a pretty violent show. But with this diary I can go public with how much I like it.
    Haven't watched Game of Thrones mainly because I think I'll like it too much! I do plan on reading the books, especially since I've heard for years how great George R.R. Martin is. I used to read a lot of scifi and fantasy, but for some reason didn't read any of his books.

    While Democrats work to get more people to vote, Republicans work to ensure those votes won't count.

    by Tamar on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:00:45 PM PDT

  •  One of the best lines (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    p gorden lippy, pgm 01, KenBee, VA Breeze

    Help me to be the best Wavy Gravy I can muster

    by BOHICA on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:07:42 PM PDT

  •  love justified and this season thrones is boring (0+ / 0-)

    and too dark so far. i never watch mad men....i grew up in the fifties and sixties and the people in the show no more represent what real people did in those days than the label "hippie" captures the breath, depth and diversity of social changes happening at the time.

  •  I watched one episode of Justified last year (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NonnyO

    and although I find it watchable, I'd say in the end it's not much more than a grittier, more cinematographic spaghetti western. With grindhouse overtones.

    Mad Men is so addicting. I can't get away from it.

    "They come, they come To build a wall between us We know they won't win."--Crowded House, "Don't Dream It's Over."

    by Wildthumb on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:20:40 PM PDT

  •  It's so great! What about the IED set-up w/ Tim? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nswalls

    One of the incredible things about Justified, and this comes straight from Elmore Leonard, is that even though Timothy Olyphant's Raylan Givens is an awesome character, the show is willing to hand off the heavy work of an episode to a more minor character. Raylan's partners Tim and Rachel, and his boss Art, all have episodes where what they're doing is given the major focus of the episode.

    Particularly, in season 4, there is a story arc between an Iraq War veteran U.S. Marshall, and an Iraq and Afganistan veteran working for Boyd Crowder's criminal organization. The dialogue between the two is just dynamite.

    I can't find any video, but there's an exchange where Marshall Gutterson (the veteran) is leading a convoy trying to escape a holler with a fugitive very much wanted dead, and he orders the convoy to stop, sensing an IED trap set-up with broken down cars on the road and there's this:

    Art Mullen (Cheif Deputy of the Lexington Marshall's office and Tim's boss: "You absolutely sure about this?
    Marshall Tim Gutterson: "No, I'm not sure. For all I know, I could be having a full-blown PTSD episode."
    Art: "You get those often?"
    Tim: "Only when I'm carrying a firearm in public."
    The delivery is so dry and perfect. I can't do it justice.

    If you haven't seen the show, I highly recommend it. It's about as close to perfect (The Wire) as television gets. Just impeccably written, directed and acted. Don't be turned off if all you know of Elmore Leonard has been some of the other screen adaptations of his novels and stories. They've been spotty at best. This is the real deal.

  •  thanks for this. good discussion, too. (0+ / 0-)

    So many laconic, ionic lines.

    When Raylan explains that you find the suicide gun on the floor, on the lap, but never, ever in the hand, the ME says,

    "You learn that on one of those crime scene shows?"

    Raylan: "Saldy, no."

    I was hooked from the first episode when he cracked neo-nazi ass and actually called someone a racist asshole. There's something you don't hear on TV every day, and I for one wouldn't mind hearing it a bit more often, as needed.

    Fear is the mind-killer - Frank Herbert, Dune

    by p gorden lippy on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:26:58 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for the show recommendations, (0+ / 0-)

    in the diary and also in comments.

    I only recently discovered Mad Men, and just finished the first season, watched series 1, season 2. Love it. Lived it. Well, actually I have not ever lived in Manhattan or worked in advertising but I did live through the 1960s as an adult woman. Yes, Mad Men makes caricature of some social trends of the sixties, but I do find the series hits closely to those times. I knew the bettys and the peggys and in some ways was them, and I knew the off-madison avenue rogers and dons (and other actors whose names escape me).

    A hazard of catching up from the beginning of a long running series is over-exposure, wherein some of the characters and the storylines become downright annoying. For me, that happened in catching up with Downton Abbey in a short time. Call the Midwife has some compelling characters, and hasn't been on long enough to become over exposed so it remains a favorite.

    Now I can watch some of the recommended series and avoid the over-exposure syndrome of catching up on just one or two series.

    “We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children” ― Chief Seattle

    by SoCalSal on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:33:28 PM PDT

  •  Boyd Crowder Makes Crime Sexy (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    one of 8, Iberian, nswalls, jkp

    Justified makes you want to be the good guy and the bad guy at the same time.

    It hones in on the ebb and flow of the essential elements of life so well that this black guy from Atlanta feels a kinship with hillbillies from Kentucky. It rises up from the dirt and the squalor and the drugs and the hopelessness of rural Appalachia, mostly on sparkling dialogue but sometimes on unpredictable plot twists, to wrap its arms around your shoulder like an old friend does when they want to tell you a story.

    As a black viewer - as a black MALE viewer - Mad Men has no way to let me in, its writers do practically nothing to help me believe, even in my wildest of dreams, that I could be Don Draper. To me, that's a writer's choice, a producers choice, to make this show a white man's wet dream of what it was like to be a real man in the sixties.

    I'll take the country boys any day of the week.

  •  One more note: Justified is bourbon material... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nswalls

    If you dig whiskey, anyway. Pour yourself a bourbon, maybe, eh, light up a little medicine if you're like me, and just kick back and relax. That's not to say the plotlines are simple, because they're not. It's just that it's a wonderful show to watch simply for the great fun it is. Some shows require a significant investment out of you as a viewer (e.g. The Wire). Justified pays off immediately.

    Besides, if you get a bit fuzzy-headed and confused with what's going on, that's what the rewind button on your DVR is for. And the episodes definitely hold up to repeated viewings.

  •  Armando...thanks for this. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KenBee

    As a lover of both "Justified" and "Mad Men," I feel no need to take sides.  Just showed "Harlan County" last week during a class I teach to Master's level social work students--they were blown away (every year, they are Blown Away).  I love that documentary--remember when Lillian Hellman presented the Oscar to Koppel-- what a moment!

    In a dark time, the eye begins to see. Theodore Roethke

    by bibble on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:56:39 PM PDT

  •  I had to stop reading comments.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mindtrain, a2nite

    Because of all the "Mad Men" spoilers (I'm still two or three episodes from the end of last season via Netflix because I can catch up with this season via DVR.) I'd defend it as I'm a big fan of "Mad Men," but since I'm a few shows behind I'd be a low information critic.

    But I had to congratulate Armando for writing about the really important things in life and for praising "Justified," a show that brings us back to the lost art of the well told yarn -- Western or otherwise -- and which just wrapped what I thought was a humdinger of a season. As someone who's chiefly obsessed with movies, it's saddens me that television has become almost the last refuge of the idea that the best entertainment usually involves interesting characters doing and saying interesting things -- but I'm just happy somebody's doing it!

    A couple of fun facts which I have to bring up and my apologies if they've been brought up.

    1. Elmore Leonard tales have been the basis for some classic straight ahead westerns. I heartily recommend the 1957 version of "3:10 to Yuma" or, if you must, the 2007 version which wasn't bad either. Also Budd Boetticher's "The Tall T" (also from '57) with Randolph Scott, Maureen O'Sullivan and a very, very interesting and rather evil Richard Boone.

    2. Just to put the old "there are no succcessful outspoken conservatives in Hollywood" canard to rest one more time, Nick Searcy -- who really is hilarious and completely outstanding as Raylan's lovably flappable boss, Art -- is a very outspoken conservative who suffered not whit of repercussions as far as I can tell for making an (appropriately strange) pro-Herman Cain video during the last primary season or for appearing on Rush Limbaugh's program.  We liberals best avoid his twitter feed...but I've often wondered how he squares that "Harlan County USA" circle...

    But, anyway, great show. My suggestion to folks is to get ahold of the DVDs of the early seasons and watch it in order, if possible. It's the kind of show you can pick up watching at pretty much the beginning of every season and there's a certain amount of stand-aloneishness but I really enjoyed the less ambitious early seasons which kind of recall the best of shows like "The Rockford Files" more than the more complex/novelistic later seasons.

    Now residing in Van Nuys, but "LaBobsterofVanNuys" isn't funny and besides, Van Nuys is really part of Los Angeles

    by LABobsterofAnaheim on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:57:20 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for all the great comments (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    I would love to respond to each and every one of them but als, it's late for me.

    I will probably write a diary reacting to some of the comments.

    BTW, Mad Men continues to disappoint tonight.

    I thin Weiner has really lost his way.

  •  Vikings (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NonnyO

    History chanel

    •  Yesssssss...! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Iberian

      As a genealogist and as a perpetual student of history (one of them being the Vikings since I have ancestors from all three countries and do genealogy research in all three countries), I was eagerly anticipating this series.

      I do have a few constructive criticisms about it, however.

      1) That high pitched electric guitar note that rattles my left ear drum as the credits come on just as the V is showing is all out of place.  It would have been better to have an ancient musical instrument..., I'd suggest a Lur.

      2)  The makeup artists were too liberal with the dirt..., and the hair stylists obviously didn't do any research regarding the combs made by Vikings found at archaeological sites.  Ancient observers of Vikings (and Rus - one of the names for the Vikings who traveled riverways and portages down to Byzantium and back) wrote that they washed their faces daily, remarked on the fact that they combed their hair, they took a bath once a week, and carried an extra change of clothes with them.  Modern bedhead hairdos would have been out of place during the Viking age.  Combed hair, braided hair for both men and women, yes, and for women, in particular, a kerchief or scarf to hold her hair back from her face and not interfere with her housework, so probably braided with the long plaits wound around her head, and topped off with a head scarf of some kind..., but matted bedhead looks - probably not.  I've not seen authentic Viking art (from my Art History studies and otherwise) that indicates the Viking men had beads in their beards, so that set up an eerie cognitive dissonance.  The old man from last week's episode who had one single braid in the center did, however, look authentic (from when he swore fealty to Ragnar as the new earl).  Women with beaded necklaces, bracelets, pins, and rings yes - at least the high-ranking women.  That is also well-known from the contemporary sources and archaeological digs.  Jewelry was a reflection of a woman's husband's wealth (or her father's when she was young, and of her own wealth if she was considered nobility - think in terms of the high-ranking woman on the Oseberg ship who was accorded a Viking ship burial, for instance).  Granted, the historical period wasn't all that clean, but the Vikings were noted for cleanliness by contemporary writers in a day and age when dirty was normal (and the new Christian religion just becoming vogue eschewed bathing as vanity - which, ultimately, aided in the spread of diseases and illnesses).

      3)  The series producers/directors used modern horses when they should have used fjord horses or Icelandic horses.  That would have lent an air of "authenticity" to the scenes.

      Constructive criticism notwithstanding since I know from historical reading that some of these individuals did exist and lived at one time (Rollo is the gr-gr-gr-grandfather of William the Bastard/Conqueror, depending on which side of the Norman invasion one is on), I'm enjoying the series.  It's being shown on both Hulu and the History Channel.  There was a real Ragnarr Loðbrók, and legend says he did die in Ælla's snake pit.

      While the series is highly interesting, I could do with a little more "reconstructed realism" in music, makeup, and horses to make it more believable.

      :-)

      If you really like Viking "stuff" and authentic historical and archaeological details, search for BBC and historical videos about Anglo-Saxons and Vikings.  There's a bunch of them on YouTube.  Anglo-Saxons were like the earlier Vikings, and the Anglo-Saxons who came from Denmark were certainly "proto-Vikings" if nothing else, even if the Anglo-Saxons were some 200+ years before the official Viking Age, and it was the Angles whose name lives on with "Angle-Land" = England.

      I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

      by NonnyO on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 03:59:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Couldn't agree more. (0+ / 0-)

    Always like Justified... It has a nice old time western feel while being set in hillbilly country. (biased... as I am originally from West Virginia) At first when I saw the commercials for it I was turned off thinking it would just be a gun toting shoot em up with no redeeming value. But thankfully the whole show surprised me completely!

    It definitely one of the best shows out there!

    "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

    by Wynter on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 11:34:24 PM PDT

  •  House Of Cards (0+ / 0-)

    Is my favorite current running show. My other favorite has long been cancelled...
    Rome (HBO 2 seasons) makes Game Of Thrones seem juvenile.

  •  No mention of Doctor Who in the comments? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mindtrain

    Shaaaaaaame!

    Why do I have the feeling George W. Bush joined the Stonecutters, ate a mess of ribs, and used the Constitution as a napkin?

    by Matt Z on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:23:11 AM PDT

  •  For GoT fans - Local GRRM appearance (0+ / 0-)

    George RR Martin will be in Kansas City over Memorial Day 2013 weekend at ConQuest.  He is very approachable, so if you want to meet the mind behind the series, come on down.  I don't have a link handy, but google Conquest kansas city and you'll find it.

  •  As a hillbilly from southern Illinois (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    I can tell you that the settings and conditions of Justified are spot on.  My Mother's people all worked for the coal mines, and I swear every time I see Justified, I think of my cousins.

    •  Mmm. Disagree...to a small degree. (0+ / 0-)

      See post below.  The feel of settings up the hollers is frequently exactly right, and the interiors are perfect. But every time I see action in a stand of Ponderosas, I cringe.

      "There is just one way to save yourself, and that's to get together and work and fight for everybody." ---Woody Guthrie (quoted by Jim Hightower in The Progressive Populist April 1, 2012, p3)

      by CitizenJoe on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:18:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I was going to take a pass on Justified but I (0+ / 0-)

    decided to watch it and I am so glad that I did.  I was caught up in the story from the first scene and I must say that the acting and writing are top notch.  

  •  Location, location, location...Kentucky, not. (0+ / 0-)

    I love Justified.

    I spent some time growing up in southern Indiana in the early-mid 1960's, just across the river from Kentucky. I got to know the area and people pretty well.

    The physical feel of the setting in Justified is nearly perfect, and then the camera pulls back and we are in a stand of Ponderosa pines, deep in California. Or the dialogue is spot-on, and then Boyd suddenly lapses Shakespearian. So there are jarring moments.

    Still, I look forward to every new episode. The character development of major and minor characters is nothing short of awesome.

    "There is just one way to save yourself, and that's to get together and work and fight for everybody." ---Woody Guthrie (quoted by Jim Hightower in The Progressive Populist April 1, 2012, p3)

    by CitizenJoe on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:13:49 AM PDT

  •  My favorite line from this season's Justified: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite
    "If you run into an asshole in the morning, you ran into an asshole. If you run into assholes all day, you’re the asshole."
  •  Good job (0+ / 0-)

    On the UK side of the pond, forget about Downer Abby, check out "Call the Midwife"

  •  The best thing about Justified (0+ / 0-)

    is that Raylan Givens is a flawed hero. He isn't larger than life. He is always getting his ass handed to him by someone either close to him or someone he barely knows, figuratively and literally.  He is someone who strove to disengage from his quicksand of a past and in so striving has been sucked in even further.  He is not unlike Don Draper in that regard.  The major difference is that I spend most of my time hating Don Draper despite the sadness of his wretched upbringing and most of my time mesmerized and captivated by Raylan Givens, rooting for him.

  •  I forgot Burn Notice & Leverage nt (0+ / 0-)
  •  VICE just started on HBO. It's not fiction (0+ / 0-)

    but it's stunning in it's clarity of a world gone insane.  For fiction, VEEP does it for me with it's dark and sardonic view of dysfunction..

    The ground for taking ignorance to be restrictive of freedom is that it causes people to make choices which they would not have made if they had seen what the realization of their choices involved. A.J. Ayer, Sir. "The Concept of Freedom "

    by Memory Corrupted on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 09:26:49 AM PDT

  •  I don't know about "best," (0+ / 0-)

    But my favorite show in TV is Portlandia. Most clever satire on TV since the old pre-network days of SCTV.

    I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!

    by itsjim on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 09:41:50 AM PDT

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