Doc Martin – season 1

Warren got me started watching.

Doc Martin is a British television medical comedy drama series starring Martin Clunes in the title role. …

The programme is set in the fictional seaside village of Portwenn and filmed on location in the village of Port IsaacCornwall, United Kingdom, …

Eight series aired between 2004 and 2017 …

The actor, Martin Clunes, is unusual and unusual looking. A touch of Mr. Bean.

The real star is the Cornish village of Port Isaac.

Click PLAY or watch a trailer on YouTube.

The actress playing receptionist Elaine, Lucy Punch, is brilliant in the role. In fact the eclectic villagers are all entertaining.

But no racial diversity in Cornwall?

Before I started on the TV show I watched the 2001 movie called Doc Martin. Similar premiss. But Doc Martin is a much warmer and more charming character in the film.

Click PLAY or watch a movie trailer on YouTube.

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Strike – BBC TV seasons 2 & 3

  1. Book 1 – The Cuckoo’s Calling
  2. Book 2 – The Silkworm
  3. Book 3 – Career of Evil

JK Rowling has written 4 books so far featuring one-legged detective Cormoran Strike and his (now) partner Robin Ellacott.

Season 2 of Strike is The Silkworm.

The TV series sticks closely to the books. Excellent.

Watch the Silkworm trailer on Daily Motion.

Season 3 of Strike is Career of Evil, the best of the three, I’d say.

Click PLAY or watch a trailer on Facebook.

Season 4 is anticipated for 2020.

Jack Ryan on Amazon – season 1

I’m surprised to report that the newest Jack Ryan TV series is very good. Important. Themes included the risk of terrorist attack by sarin, nuclear radiation and Ebola.

Good acting. Believable characters. Exotic locations. Big budget.

Rotten Tomatoes is only 74%, however.

You probably heard that Jack Ryan is played by Jim Halpert from the NBC sitcom The Office. That’s John Krasinski. He’s very good, actually. Likeable. Relatable.

The role was previously played by Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck, and Chris Pine.

Click PLAY or watch the trailer on YouTube.

Season 2 premieres in November.

Carnival Row

Carnival Row is an American fantasy television series … that premiered on Amazon Prime August 2019. The series stars Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne.

The series was shot entirely in the Czech Republic throughout 108 shooting days.

On Rotten Tomatoes, Carnival Row has only a 55% approval.

“Beautiful, but bloated, Carnival Row boasts meticulously crafted mythology and luscious world building—unfortunately its story of haves and have nots simply has too much going on to create anything cohesive.”

I agree with some of that.

Season 1 is a bit of a disappointment for me.

The racism theme FAR too heavy handed.

There are too many characters. Too many subplots.

But the acting is good. Special effects astonishing. Fantasy spectacle, intrigue, and sex all good.

It has potential. I’ll definitely watch season 2 hoping they can find a more focused plot.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Damages (season 5)

The last season (2012) was definitely the weakest. Ratings had dwindled by this point.

No number of flashbacks could make sense of the plot.

That’s a shame since Ryan Phillippe had a terrific role as Channing McClaren, a guy like Julian Assange running a site like Wikileaks. (He was married to Reese Witherspoon from 1999 to 2007.)

I’m glad I watched the 5 seasons. And really happy I’ll never have to face Glenn Close in court.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

 

Even This I Get to Experience – Norman Lear

The Simpson’s writer — Mike Reiss — recommended Norman’s Lear’s autobiography. And it’s excellent.

Norman Lear’s career is legendary: All in the Family; The Jeffersons; Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman. Over 100 TV shows.

He collaborated with Rob Reiner on Stand By Me and The Princess Bride.

Surprisingly, the character Lear identifies closest with Maude.

Archie Bunker was based on Lear’s father. 

Maude was a social activist, as was Lear.

Lear fought Nixon, Jerry Falwell and the Religious Right, the Tea Party.

Lear is a proud American buying a copy of the United States Declaration of Independence—for $8.1 million. Then touring it across the nation to celebrate Democracy.

The autobiography was published 2014 when Lear was age-92.

One of the first TV celebrities, Lear knew and hung-out with almost everybody. I enjoyed hearing the inside story of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, for example. Lewis was a jerk.

Amazon

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Brotherhood of the Rose by David Morrell

The beginning of this acclaimed 1983 book is compelling.

It’s the story of Saul (Jew) and Chris (Catholic), two orphans from Philadelphia, who grow up like stepbrothers.

Trained from a young age to be CIA spies and assassins, Raumulas and Remus (code names) are expertly defined characters with a great back story.

It’s well written. I’d like to recommend this book. … On the other hand, I found the ending quite weak.

Amazon.

A cheesy made-for-TV movie was released in 1989. The book is much better.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Mortalis Series:

The Brotherhood of the Rose, 1983
The Fraternity of the Stone, 1985
The League of Night and Fog, 1987