Thursday, June 21, 2012

Review Day

There are no major spoilers in these reviews.

Treme, Season Two:
The second season of Treme is more of the same -- if you liked the first season even a little bit, you'll like this one just as much. It's now a year after Hurricane Katrina, and this season follows the lives of the various characters established in the first season, with a minimum of Crash-esque path crossing. It's still a show of character development rather than plots, although there are flashes of inspiration where the writers were obviously trying to channel The Wire. There's still a few too many musical interludes, but I enjoyed the musical styles explored here more than the first season's.

Final Grade: B+

Pushing Daisies, Soundtrack:
It's been a while since I purchased a soundtrack CD -- the last was probably from season two of LOST (after which I made four copies of the CD and put a new season number on each one with a Sharpie). The level of thematic cohesiveness on this soundtrack is impressive, and the show's cute cover of "Birdhouse in Your Soul" sent Rebecca off on a They Might Be Giants nostalgia kick.

Final Grade: B+

Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin:
The HBO adaptation of this novel was an unexpected gem (not unlike any heist movie where the jewel thief offloads the goods in the pocket of an unsuspecting passerby while fleeing from the cops). I read the source novel after watching the show, and was impressed by how faithful the adaptation was. Unfortunately, the show was so exact and fresh in my mind that I couldn't help but to picture its visuals while reading. This was not necessarily a bad thing, but it gave me a better opinion of the book than I might have had, had I read it without any introduction. The novel employs the device of telling each chapter from a different character's perspective. This lends itself well to an HBO-esque show, but puts the damper on your reading speed when you get to the end of a favorite character's chapter and then realize you have to read twenty pages of Sansa garbage. Overall, I found it to be a decent, but not amazing fantasy story, and don't plan to continue with the rest of the series.

Final Grade: B

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