Now some other blogs may start next week with this but with my posting quota I got probably less then 4 posts left this month. If I have counted correctly this must be my 296th post so I´ll be doing post 300 next year. And I still have to organize the Christmans contest if I want to get through with it. So in this first recap post I want to start with what was cool on tv in 2010.
NEW SEASON OF SUPERNATURAL
Yes, on top of my list must be the new season of SUPERNATURAL ( which should be season 4 - I think ). The series just gets better and better and the stakes get higher and higher. One of the worst things while watching the series is knowing that this is what the german tv series JOHN SINCLAIR, based on the pulps of Jason Dark could have been.
When I first heard about this I thought , yes, the german tv people have finally gotten it. JOHN SINCLAIR could be like BUFFY meets X - FILES ( remember this was way before SUPERNATURAL ). Instead it was more like DER ALTE meets WALKER, TEXAS RANGER.
Remember the Halloween episode on WALKLER ? Wow, that was bad. You could really see they tried to make it scary but they were not allowed to show anything really too exciting because of the parent groups. It was bad. It was Bernd Eichinger new Prince Valiant bad. One a good day with a lot of beer you couldn´t watch it. And the JOHN SINCLAIR tv series was worse. Oh, the horror !!! ( And not in a good " Hammer movie by way of Roger Corman " way )
Maybe they should have gone with an animated version that´s closer to the series. Like this one :
But what can you expect ? They even f - word - ed up the JOHN SINCLAIR comic.
In the last issue they almost - ALMOST - managed to do an okay comic. Not a good one - an okay one. So that I bought the issue and thought that maybe the next issue would be better.
Then they cancelled it. Anyway, I wanted to concentrate on the good stuff on tv and on SUPERNATURAL. One of the best things of the series are the recaps of the last season at the beginning of the first episode of the new season. Because they use really cool rock n roll tracks for this. I know the season that was last shown here ( they are currently showing reruns of season 2 ) was season 4 but I haven´t posted the intro for season 3 yet and if there´s one definite theme song for the series it is AC / DC´s classic " hell´s bells ". Of course the embedding has been disabled so here are the links.
The following haven´t been shown in Germany so far so don´t click them if you don´t want to be spoiled.
There have been a few comics based on the tv series ( for the longest time I didn´t know what came first - the comics or the tv series ) but they face the same problems most tv series comics do : since the readers already know the characters and what will happen to them stories from the past are not that exciting and because of future events in the series the things you can do with characters are limited. Also for new readers there may not be enough information to get hooked ( because the producers still hope they will buy the expensive DVDs ) and for old readers most of it is just a rehashing of old tv episodes.
Kind of like EARTH´S MIGHTIEST AVENGERS : there was too much continuity knowledge needed to understand the story to be enjoyable for new readers, but not enough new stuff for longtime readers who have seen this stuff a few times - done by better writers AND artists. Or like in the case of the JOHN SINCLAIR comic the producers just don´t care. Which happens to a lot of franchise comics. Marketing thinks that the name alone will sell the comic so they don´t need good artists and we end up with something like the TOMB RAIDER comic.
The only comics that are based on a tv series that don´t face that problem are BUFFY SEASON EIGHT and the last season of ANGEL because it comes after the end of the tv series. And because Joss Whedon is personally involved with it. John Byrne did a few issues for the ANGEL book which has been collected in a nice trade so I´ll probably get that.
NEW SEASON OF FRINGE
Another great series is FRINGE although there is also a kind of private joke involved with it - at least here in Germany. Now is it just me or does Lance Reddick who plays Agent Phillip Broyles like the lost brother of Bruce Darnell ? You know, the guy Heidi Klum fired from GERMANY´S NEXT TOP MODEL ?
Separated at birth : Lance Reddick and Bruce Darnell ?
In any case, Bruce did a campaign for a telephone company here in Germany and now whenever Agent Broyles appears on FRINGE I hear Bruce in my head.
Du brauchst einen Wechselkurs. Let somebody from Germany explain it.
Nevertheless, FRINGE is one of my favorite tv shows and I especially like the complex character of Walter Bishop. I didn´t think they would dare to make him so....villainous. He´s really done some bad, bad things in his live. But you also have to see that - unlike Gambit - he knows it an he´s trying to make amends. If you want to talk about a real villain just take Walternative.
What a cool name. This show is of course borrowing from comics or how else would you describe the series premise than CRISIS ON PARALLEL EARTHS ?
And I have to say the way they pulled the whole parrallel earths thing off without making it sound too unrealistic - fantastic.
They are also showing reruns now but I have to say the season finale was just great. Especially the fake comic covers for the alternative universe.
And what a cliffhanger. Although I have to say I kind of expected the switch. So I wasn´t really surprised by it. Still, can´t wait for the next season.
Yep, there are also some FRINGE comics but so far I haven´t checked them out. What can I say, my budget is very small and so far I seem to be one of the few comic journalists who doesn´t get review copies.
HUMAN TARGET TV SERIES
Since we´re already on the subject of tv series and comics here´s another one I have to mention. Okay, at first I wasn´t too keen on the idea of adapting the comic HUMAN TARGET as a tv series. Don´t get me wrong, it COULD be a great tv series. But after hearing that they changed a lot of things I thought : Oh great, here comes another disaster because the guys in Hollywood think they know better.
In the original comic Christopher Chance was a unique combination of private detective and bodyguard who operated by impersonating his clients in order to eliminate threats to their safety. Thus becoming in fact a human target.
Now in the tv series he´s just a bodyguard because of the old problem - the actor wants to show his face. Which you can´t do if you wear someone else´s face for 80 percent of the screentime. It´s the same reason Sylvester Stallone had to take of the helmet as Judge Dredd ( something he never did in the comics ) and why Peter Parker is so often unmasked in the first three Spider - Man movies.
So they changed some things from the original concept ( not only to cut the budget for special effects ) but the remaining idea is still so strong that they came up with a good series.
And I really like the characters, especially Guerrero played by Jackie Earl Haley who was Zack Snyder´s Rorschach in WATCHMEN. Although I find the whole " no killing " stick of Christopher Chance a bit unrealistic. On the other hand maybe you see it differently if you had done it for a living and wanted to get away from it.
There is even a comic I read of the Human Target, the 1999 Vertigo 4 issue miniseries penned by Peter Milligan. It´s an intelliogent read that deals with the concept of identity and has great art by Edvin Biuković who tragically died soon afterwards. The series comes with the highest recommendation.
SMALLVILLE ABSOLUTE JUSTICE
Okay, it´s not something I have seen on german tv. Because as usual Germany is way behind with all tv series. I swear, every time my mother comes back from Spain, all the tv series that are " new " and " hot " here in Germany - she´s already seen ( at least ) the first season in Spain.
So I have to thank the internet once again for this. And a guy at the Stuttgarter Comicbörse who just had to tell me most of the cool bits. As a fan of the Justice Society of America I just had to see SMALLVILLE´s rendition of the first superteam in DC history and let me tell you it´s just all kinds of totally Airwolf. I dare you to watch the trailer :
As usual I tried to watch the episode on YouTube but they only had a lot of short clips. So I did a little research and found some download links instead. Usually I´m a bit hesitant about putting this kind of stuff on my comicblog but since it´s not out yet in Germany I´m willing to risk it. Once you´ve seen it you´ll want to buy the high definition DVD or Blue Ray anyway. And it´s in english so all german viewers have to wait for the translation on german tv version whether they like it or not.
part 1/ part 2 / part 3 / part 4 or part 1/ part 2 / part 3 / part 4
And that´s once again all for Today. There is still a lot to say about tv shows like LOST, the last season of HEROES or such shows like LEVERAGE or NCIS L.A. but maybe in another post. If I´m doing one with the not so good things on tv in 2010.
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