[watching] What have you seen recently?


Rune Priest
My thoughts and opinions on Moffat's and Gatiss' Dracula: I thoroughly enjoyed the first two episodes and felt it was well written and brilliantly acted. I just felt extremely let down by the third episode and was disappointed by the ending. The drama had so much potential and could have become the next Sherlock. I felt the final episode squandered what the first two episodes had built up. It feels to me it was a wasted opportunity.


The Guvnor
Staff member
I enjoyed Dracula from beginning to end.
The final episode worked fine for me, *I feel* it's necessary to have new angles on old tales and Moffatt and Gatiss did it well and with pizzas. The only thing I would wish would be that they had used four episodes.
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The Guvnor
Staff member
Dracula the 1st 2 episodes where very good. The 3rd seemed rushed and tacked on. The modern stuff should have been 2 episodes to give that time line time to breath and settle into its stride.
I agree with that. There was more than enough to explore in a further episode.
I've been catching up on a lot of missed movies and stuff. Here's some one-line reviews

Mortal Engines - pretty, predictable and what is with the act 2 Frankenstein dude?!
Do you mean Shrike? The Stalker, reanimated cyborg? He's a major character in the remaining books. Who knows if they will make those though.
New Amsterdam S2 (Part One) is just the same cloyingly sentimental 'Holby in New York' nonsense as S1, just split into two lumps. Perfect rainy day TV. And of course it ends on a cliffhanger...
Watching Lilyhammer at the moment. Steven van Zandt reprising his Sopranos role in all but name, and relocated via witness protection to Norway. Fish out of water style hilarity ensues. Except that it doesn't really. There's some humour in van Zandt's trademark lugubrious performance (he looks like Al Pacino after overdosing on pies) but the character is just too much of a horrible scrote to be very amusing, or likeable. Probably stick with the first series to the end then have a think about whether to bother with next two.
Saw (most of) episode 1 of The Enemy Within last night. I missed the start, so I didn't know that the bit they showed in the trailers (explaining why the heroine 'betrayed' the US) wasn't at the start but was in fact the big reveal at the end of the episode. I therefore spent the whole time wondering why she was "the worst traitor in living memory" and "a modern day Benedict Arnold" (not that I really know a lot about Benedict Arnold).

Once the big 'reveal' had happened, I then had time as the credit rolled to change my query from 'why do they think she is so evil?' to 'why did the FBI/CIA/NSA etc not discover what actually happened, and how could they be quite so incompetent?'

Overall, the show did not encourage me to continue watching. I mean, the most hated traitor in the US, and they (a) take her to a random civilian dentist after she's knocked one of her own teeth out, (b) leave her alone, unwatched in the dentist's chair with all the tools while she has an X-ray taken? I wonder what happens next...


Rune Priest
It seems Dracula was a hit! The seven day consolidated ratings for it were 7 million viewers, making it the most watched programme on New Years Day. Dr Who's Spyfall Part One came a close second with 6.9 million viewers. These figures are likely to increase when the final 28 day consolidated figures are calculated.


The Guvnor
Staff member
I am a big fan of the Witcher books.
The first one is really a collection of the short stories. As such the big meta arcs haven't started.
The TV series has addressed that nicely, weaving the earlier monster short stories in with the meta story lines. It's a very good blending and artfully done.
Yes.. it's a little more serious than the books, but that's no bad thing, and so far the grimness of the "total war" haven't fully emerged.
I am very very pleased, 9/10.
Now if only R Talsorian would clean up the RPG for a 2nd edition.
I've not been a happy camper with my watching of late. None of this following I'd recommend if you are feeling remotely down, but I found it all strangely compelling.

First up I finally treated myself to an old favourite remastered/remixed/twiddled about with by its director - Apocalypse Now - Final Cut. Here's the trailer for it... let's start with Francis explaining himself.

Does it it live up to the hype? Yup on all levels. Its strange watching it because its not like the fresh layer of paint that Redux was, its more something very familiar rebuilt from its compoents. Dramatically it punches harder than in previous versions. The whole scene where Capt. Willard gets his mission from the General is off the scale tense now, and there's a magic moment where I felt that I was actually sitting at the table when Martin Sheen looked directly at me with a question on his mind (which I won't divulge here because its classified :D). Fully recommended.

The Captain is a German-language film about a deserter, who two weeks before the end of WW2, finds a Captain's uniform, dons it and then goes on a bit of rampage behind German lines pretending to be on a special mission for Hitler. Its based on a true story, and by turns goes surreal, black comedy and of course full on wtf-grim!

Finally I watched the recent documentary about the UK's Cold War response; Arena's A Very British Guide to the End of the World

The stuff about the A-bomb tests on Easter Island in the 50s make me trust the Government/Establishment even less. Probably still lurking on IPlayer.

I need to get back to watching escapist brightly coloured Kung Fu movies :)
Watching Counterpart on Starz, reflecting on the issue that I know it got cancelled after two seasons.

A man working intelligence in 21st century Germany discovers a whole new level of truth when he's dragged into a basement office to come face-to-face with his doppelganger.

The world changed in the late 80s when the world simply split, dimensions ripped asunder but still joined at a single point. One, the Other Side, struggles, hammered by a contagion that kills 7% of the population and leaves the world staggering. The Other Side blames their counterpart of the disease that set them back.

It's great. A fine performance by J.K. Simmons as Howard Silk, the man who comes face-to-face with the truth, discovering his Other has achieved so much more in the past 30 years than he thought he ever could.

Spies, duplicity, assassination, cyanide pills, grey streets...