March 19, 2009

BBC America

I really enjoy the bulk of BBC shows that have made it to our side of the pond.  This in and of itself makes me happy I switched to DirecTV.  Trying to narrow down why the appeal is tougher.

Yes, it is new so it has that new car smell going on.  However, I have been a fan of UK television shows for quite some time.  Going back to Captain Scarlet, The Avengers and Doctor Who,  which are decidedly different from the US counterparts.  

There seems to be greater risk on the part of the producers.  The Avengers started out with Honor Blackman and John Steed, then transitioned into Diane Rigg.  How many shows in the US survive the replacement of a main character?  How about eleven replacements of the main character over a 46 year period?  Doctor Who did just that, with its cheesy sets and over the top science the characters intrigued people to keep tuning in week after week, year after year.

So we have the appeal as lack of predictability, more emphasis on quality over quantity,  stories that have an ending  and a smaller talent pool for acting.

When watching desk and couch shows from the UK, you see more reasonable expectations of the celebrity.  That is to say, they appear to be less 'stars' and more actors.  More approachable, humble and understanding of where they fit in society.  Political correctness has not gored humor.

Could be I'm just tired of hearing the latest tabloid gossip being touted as headline news.  Maybe its the fact we never had a caste society.  

Whatever it is, I am enjoying the entertainment and news they are delivering.


the WIZARD, fkap said...

Lee, You and I discussed this a few posts back, but I wanted to give you my personal update on Ashes to Ashes. The first episode was simply, horrifically, awful!!!

It was so bad I was about to delete it from my DirecTV DVR Season Pass and delete the second episode without watching it. But is was a really lazy Sunday afternoon and I had nothing better to do, so I turned it on......

And it was simply Magic!!! Everything fell into place and the characters, plot and mystery all came to life. I am now hopelessly addicted and cannot wait to see the next episode.


Lee said...

I know this is a redux of an earlier posting.

Maybe I am looking for distraction?

The first episode was an obvious play to the Gene Hunt fandom.

Glad your enjoying this show. Now Bring back MM.

Stella said...

The U.S. can't boast changing main characters over a 46-year period and keeping a show alive. But there's one one show in the US that's thrived despite the replacement of many main characters?

Law & Order: 20 years. Sorry if the show bores you. I'm a bit of an addict.

Since you're mentioning Brit TV, a great old classic BBC TV mini-series is Disraeli: extremely cheap production with fantastic actors. I heart BBC news...

Lee said...

Very true, you can add ER to that as well.

I will have to look for Disraeli. I find that good actors and good story trump cheaper production.

Stella said...

ER! Yes, indeed. That was a great show. Ian McShane stars as Disraeli. Have you seen Lovejoy from ITV? His acting is one of Britain's greatest imports.

Lee said...

Indeed Lovejoy is one of my favorites shows.