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TV series recs?

If you have watched any of the following series, I would love your opinion.
Well written?
Fun?
Intelligent?
Cast/creator diversity?
Sexism/racism/other $fail?

The Colony
Humans
Into the Badlands
iZombie
Killjoys
Lucifer
Spartacus

Do you recommend any other TV series (prefer crime/mystery/sf) that are available on DVD and are fun, diverse, and not too $faily?

This entry was originally posted at http://firecat.dreamwidth.org/885308.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
phoenixpdx
Feb. 13th, 2017 03:12 am (UTC)
We've been watching Lucifer, and find it well written, witty, fun, and intelligent. Some diversity in cast, and story lines involving gay, kinky and the like. Set in LA, so no body diversity to speak of, and a fair amount of sexism and sex-shaming (sometimes by way of "oh, this is tooo much and that's why it's funny, right?"). Still, lots of eye candy of both genders, and some interesting story lines.

I would love to know what you hear about The Colony, Humans, and Spartacus, by the way.

We're currently sporadically watching Wallander, which is well written, interesting and pretty original....but depressing as the dickens. Scandihoovians, really. Uses the detective character from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo but none of the other characters; set in Sweden but done with all English actors. So I guess a mixed bag.

Otherwise, I tend to stick with nature documentaries, preferably from the Beeb. :-)
firecat
Feb. 13th, 2017 03:37 am (UTC)
Thanks!
sophy
Feb. 18th, 2017 09:33 pm (UTC)
omg my fave thing - giving tv recs!! (this is gonna be so long I am sorry)

The Colony is well-written, if you don't mind a sort of vague narrative of the big picture (look it's a good-ways into season 2 and I'm still not entirely sure that the colonizers are aliens??). But the plot and intrigue and family drama parts are really good. I wouldn't call it fun, because it's of serious nature, but it is enjoyable if you like shows where you bite your nails through most of it due to the intensity. I'd for sure call it intelligent. Not a lot in the way of diversity, but also not a lot of obvious fail beyond the lack of diversity.

Humans is exciting, using the well-worn concept of service A.I.'s rising up to explore lots of social and scientific issues. It can be fun, but mostly it's serious. Def. intelligent, has some diversity but not much. I'm trying to think back if there was a lot of fail or not, and while nothing specific comes to mind, I've a little jangling in my brain telling me there has been. It can also be triggering for rape/assault issues because some of the A.I.'s are used/abused in this way.

iZombie is fun. It's well-written in the way of having lots of pop culture references, characters that you come to care a lot about, and some interesting overall themes. But it's not a work of genius by any means. Some good diversity - the main character, her main nemesis, her best friend, and main love interests are all white, but both of her work partners (who also become close friends) are men of color. But it could do a lot better, and the bit of the zombies taking on characteristics of the people whose brains they eat has caused quite a lot of fail, imo. But still, it's a fun show overall.

Killjoys is a lot of fun and well-written, especially if you like found family stuff. It's intelligent, has some good episodic, as well as longer arcs, and series-wide arcs that are fun to watch play out. Some diversity - of the three main characters, one is a woman of color who is the boss of the two white guys. She's pretty kick-ass both in the fight-ey sense and in just being a strong confident character in her own right. No fail is coming to mind, but that could be due to me not remembering or not having picked up on it.

Lucifer is - oh my heart - Lucifer. I love this show so much I'm not sure how unbiased I can be at the moment, but yes, it's fun, it's well-written, it's very intelligent. The cast is sooooo good. Some diversity but it could do a lot better in that department. And again, no fail comes directly to mind but that's not saying it's not there. This is a show to get emotionally wrapped up in and have teh feels. Also brings up a lot of interesting spiritual/religious issues.

I have not seen Badlands or Spartacus, but based on your interest in the listed shows and criteria, may I suggest:


sophy
Feb. 18th, 2017 09:33 pm (UTC)

* 12 Monkeys - not awesome with diversity but well-written time travel shows are hard to come by and this one does some great stuff with it while also giving all teh feels
* Blindspot - interesting mystery/crime show with an awesome female lead. Some diversity, but also some fail as to who gets killed off, etc. Ugh. But fairly fun, fairly well-written, fairly intelligent. Maybe put towards the bottom of a to-watch list??
* Dark Matter - if you like found family shows, this is a keeper. Very diverse, very complex, very fun, quite well-written, character driven but heavy with plot. Just very very good.
* Elementary - probably already on your viewing list???
*The Expanse - very well-written (although if you're like me and find large casts with seemingly disparate storylines difficult to follow it can be confusing at times), noir mystery bits, lots of diversity, lots of class consciousness and themes of revolt and revolution, lots of good sciencey stuff, fun at times with the characters relationships with one another, extremely intelligent, just overall good sci-fi stuff.
* How to Get Away With Murder - lots of diversity in lots of areas, not too much in the fail department, very complex and well-written, fun and intelligent, amazing cast, good mysteries of the episodic, season-long, and series-long varieties, and always leaves you wanting more.
* Incorporated - some diversity, very intelligent and well-written so far (only into the first season so it's always hard to tell how they'll handle a show with lots of twists and turns after it's gone on for awhile), delves very deeply into class issues, environmental issues, and of course corporations acting as governments with lots of fun techie stuff. One plot point which could have been very faily in regards to a woman choosing sex work as a way to save her family needing rescue from her male savior seems to be taking an interesting turn once we've finally met and gotten to know her as a character. We'll see what they do with it...
* Mr. Robot - one of the best shows currently airing. Yes diversity, yes intelligence, yes yes yes well-written, yes fun. Not really sci-fi, but I've heard that the hacking/techie stuff used in the show is very realistic and it's all about mental health struggles and social revolt and political maneuverings and mind-fucks and it's just really amazing. The show creator and runner is an Egyptian American coming from a Muslim family and this show is obviously his baby as in season two he took over pretty much all of the writing, directing, editing, etc. I cannot recommend this show enough - However, lots and lots of trigger warnings for mental health issues especially around depersonalization, derealization, hallucinations, dissociation, etc.
sophy
Feb. 18th, 2017 09:33 pm (UTC)
* Orphan Black - omg so much diversity. I'm sure you're aware of this show, so I won't go on about it but it's so. So. good.
* People of Earth - okay this one is a comedy, but it's about a reporter who comes to believe he was abducted by aliens and joins a support group in a small town known for it's reports of abductions. We quickly find that he and his fellow support group-ers are right and get to see both sides as the aliens try to cover up their activities and the main character tries to sort out what's happened to him in as objective of a manner as possible. It's got a sort of wry, dry humor much of the time but it's really fun and funny, and I'd say yes, well-written. Some diversity - the main character is black, but most of the cast is white. I find it intriguing, and it's been renewed for a second season.
* Powerless - another comedy, this one about a company inventing things to help people caught in the cross-fire of superhero/supervillain activities. The cast is wonderful and quite diverse, but it's only had 3 episodes so far so it's hard to judge too much. The kind of humor this show relies on, I'd call wacky.
* Supergirl - okay, this is a mainstream show that I'm sure you've heard lots of about if you're not already watching it, but holy cats Alex Danvers' coming out story this season was ahhhh-mazing. (there's fail though too)
Wynonna Earp - speaking of coming out stories... this campy show isn't exactly what I'd call intelligent or even particularly well-written but it's fun as hell and has lots of awesome lady characters as well as an awesome black male character and ... lesbians. Supernatural meets Western meets Camp is how I'd describe the tone of the show.

Hope this is helpful! :)
firecat
Feb. 19th, 2017 11:14 pm (UTC)
Thank you, this is all so helpful!

Of the shows you recommended:

We really like Elementary.

We bounced off How to Get Away with Murder a little way into the second season, too much "plot driven by stupidity" and we stopped caring about any of the characters.

We really like Orphan Black.

We haven't seen any of the others, but they're definitely going on the list.

Thanks again!
sophy
Feb. 18th, 2017 09:44 pm (UTC)
* Orphan Black - omg so much diversity. I'm sure you're aware of this show, so I won't go on about it but it's so. So. good.
* People of Earth - okay this one is a comedy, but it's about a reporter who comes to believe he was abducted by aliens and joins a support group in a small town known for it's reports of abductions. We quickly find that he and his fellow support group-ers are right and get to see both sides as the aliens try to cover up their activities and the main character tries to sort out what's happened to him in as objective of a manner as possible. It's got a sort of wry, dry humor much of the time but it's really fun and funny, and I'd say yes, well-written. Some diversity - the main character is black, but most of the cast is white. I find it intriguing, and it's been renewed for a second season.
* Powerless - another comedy, this one about a company inventing things to help people caught in the cross-fire of superhero/supervillain activities. The cast is wonderful and quite diverse, but it's only had 3 episodes so far so it's hard to judge too much. The kind of humor this show relies on, I'd call wacky.
* Supergirl - okay, this is a mainstream show that I'm sure you've heard lots of about if you're not already watching it, but holy cats Alex Danvers' coming out story this season was ahhhh-mazing. (there's fail though too)
Wynonna Earp - speaking of coming out stories... this campy show isn't exactly what I'd call intelligent or even particularly well-written but it's fun as hell and has lots of awesome lady characters as well as an awesome black male character and ... lesbians. Supernatural meets Western meets Camp is how I'd describe the tone of the show.

Hope this is helpful! :)
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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