FAIR WARNING: Any time I begin a conversation with “It all started when…”, I’m about to take you on a journey windier than a road trip through the Appalachia mountains!
So, IT ALL STARTED WHEN our DVD player died. It was a number of years old and had been a very important part of my conversion from full time night nurse to daytime romance writer. Why? Not what you might think. No, I didn’t spend hours watching romance movies. Three days a week I popped in a disc and watched this really buff, cute guy tell me how to exercise. Yep. Hubby did the exercises, too, although not at the same time. (He does the regular to expert ones, I’m on the modified ones!) So, when the instrument of my torture died, we needed to get a new one.
Now, here’s the first LEFT TURN in the story. I’m trying to get 1,000-2,000+ words written a day so I can have the next Edgars Family Novel VANISHED done before I travel home to see my mom. So, I didn’t really have time to run out and get a new DVD player. Answer? Put husband in charge of new purchase. This is good, because he likes to spend time researching what to buy before leaving the house–time I don’t have right now, so he is a happy man. (He’s hunting.)
Meanwhile, another issue popped up that required both of us to leave the house to attend to it, so hubby decides we’ll just stop and pick up the new DVD he’s selected while we’re out. RIGHT TURN.We made quick progress to the DVD section of the local electronics mega-store, but then we were derailed by this cute, (not super sexy, more like nerd girl cute) customer service person, who said the magic words to hubby, NFL Ticket and Direct TV and savings. Sigh, the hunter has a new scent. She was one of those speed talkers, too, but eventually she did show me (MARK ME AS SKEPTIC) the cost savings of switching our TV service. So we signed the papers and scheduled the install day. We also managed to buy the DVD player, so at least that part of the adventure was on task.
However, it didn’t quite stop there.
Once we got home, hubby studied our old TV. Okay…let’s please note, the thing was only 10 years old and yes we have exactly one TV in our house. The one we had before that was 18 when we got rid of it. But as we’re aging and our eyesight is aging with us, he thought we should get a new flat screen TV. Why? Because back at the electronic mega-store he’d seen several, and wow the picture was so much better on a bigger TV. Sigh. LEFT TURN. So, off he goes to see what the best deal he can get is. (Hunting again.)
Once he’s back home, he starts measuring the entertainment center. “Uhm, honey. The new TV isn’t going to fit.”
Me, “What are we going to do?”
Hunter/Hubby, “Mount it on the wall?”
Me, “And what will you do with all the electronic boxes for the TV and DVD?”
H/H, “Just set them on the floor.”
Me, casting him an are-you-serious look, “I don’t think so. We’ll need to buy a stand of some sort. One that can house all the electronics and still look nice.”
Hunter/Hubby smiles and heads to his office to start searching. Finally, we came up with one that looked nice and functioned well AND would hold the TV he’d ordered.
So now, he brings home the stand and with a little bit of help from me and a rather small amount of curse words (surprised me, too), he put together the stand. It’s black with cute little glass doors and about two and a half feet tall. The next day the delivery guys arrive and install the new TV, even carting off the old one. Little fuss, little muss. Two days later, the Direct TV man shows up to install his portion. This required quite a bit more work, fuss and noise. Hunter/Hubby followed him around, talking more than I’ve seen him talk in six months!
Finally, we’re all set to watch the Ohio State Buckeyes play football vs the dreaded Wisconsin team that night, but, LEFT TURN, Hunter/Hubby has decided the sound quality isn’t quite up to snuff, so off to the electronics store once more. This time he returns with this long, low sound bar thing that sits in front of the TV and gives us better quality sound.
At last, the journey has ended. We have a wonderful new Television/electronics system. We can see the picture clearly. We can hear the sound as if we’re in the stadium. It only takes four remotes to turn it on or off.
Dear God, don’t let the two-year-old grandchild wander off with one!!
So, do you have these adventures when you let your husband/significant other loose in an electronic world? Does his eyes get all wild with anticipation when he has to hunt out the best equipment/deal? Do you have more than one TV in your house?
One of the reasons I love Shakespeare (you have to love old Will if you’re going to teach him for twenty years) is that so much of his plays and sonnets are immensely quotable. I find them popping up in some form or other in books, telly shows, news broadcasts, movies, and of course, books.
When I hear one on a television show Dr. Big and I are watching, I always make him hit the “pause” button and ask, “Know where that comes from?”
I’m such a show off.
What I love about Shakespeare quotes is the rhythm, cadence, tone, imagery, and yes even that teacher-ish iambic pentameter meter. It’s as if Will knew he’d be quoted centuries after he was gone (or Christopher Marlowe was gone, if you believe Kit was the real writer of Shakespeare’s works – I choose to ignore that because Marlowe was killed in a bar fight. Probably. Maybe.)
Of course, it’s not just Shakespeare who’s quotable. Our culture is rife with lines, phrases and sayings that each new generation discovers all over again and claims them as their own.
Here are some of my favorite.
“The fault … is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings.” (Cassius to Brutus while talking him into participating in Caesar’s assassination)
“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn!” (Rhett to Scarlett – what an intriguing way for this classic romance novel to end. Does she or doesn’t she get Rhett back?)
“Take my love, take my land/Take me where I cannot stand/
I don’t care, I’m still free/You can’t take the sky from me.”
Canceling Joss Whedon’s Firefly series about a space cowboy and his ship Serenity has got to be the worst mistake Fox Television ever made. This quote is from the show’s theme song.
“Screw your courage to the sticking-place.” Lady Macbeth taunts her husband into murdering King Duncan.
“Good opinion once lost is lost forever.” No real romance reader will fail to recognize this famous line from “Pride and Prejudice.”
“By the pricking of my thumbs/something wicked this way comes.” Not only did the three witches recognize Macbeth’s evil when he enters the scene, but Ray Bradbury wrote a book called “Something Wicked This Way Comes.”
“Frailty, thy name is woman.” Hamlet speaks of his mother Gertrude and her hasty marriage to her brother-in-law after her husband’s death.
My mother also had a lot of aphorisms and adages she passed on to me.
A stitch in time saves nine.
Why buy the cow when the milk’s free?
Haste makes waste.
Penny wise and pound foolish.
Don’t make me stop this car!
What about you, readers? Do you have a favorite saying passed on from other generations? Are there lines from books, movies or TV shows that stick in your mind? Do you have a favorite phrase you find yourself repeating?
I love TV almost as much as I love books. I used to work in TV, so at one time, I could claim that watching TV was an essential part of my job. But now, even though it’s nothing but a time waster, I still love it. And I don’t just love the shows – I love the commercials. Especially the funny ones. I feel giddy, fan-girl admiration for ad copywriters who can pack several laugh-out-loud moments into one 30-second spot.
Hysterical! When they pan out to reveal the grandmotherly sample lady, I laugh every time. There’s another version of this commercial where the kid says, “She’s like, probably the most giving person I’ve ever met.” They’re all so deadpan, it cracks me up!
This makes me laugh on two levels… first, the men, who are willing to trade their dignity for a beer without a second thought. I’ve known guys like that. I might’ve even married one. Then, the women’s reactions are perfect. ‘Cause you know it’s true… we go through life rolling our eyes at men, speechlessly aghast at the things they do.
“I love you for who you are on the inside.” “I’m pure milk chocolate on the inside.” “And I love that about you.”
Snork!!!! Plus, the wise M&M has it right when she says, “Gosh, you’re handsome.” He was the best reason ever to watch DWTS! The laughs are mild, but they come with man candy – and actual candy.
Which of the three commercials did you like best? What are some of the other great ads that are making you laugh these days? (If you can find it on YouTube, post the link so we can all have a day of laughing together!)
We are fully into the new fall TV season now, and my TiVo is filling up faster than I can view things. There are the returning favorites like Castle, Hawaii 5-0, Supernatural, Fringe and The Walking Dead. But today I want to talk about a few of the new shows that I’m really enjoying.
Once Upon a Time — How can a writer resist a show with this title? Plus, there are the classic characters of Snow White, the Seven Dwarves, Prince Charming, and even an evil queen. I love the twist that all these characters have been cursed into our modern world and they don’t remember who they really are. I’m really looking forward to seeing how the relationship between Snow White and Prince Charming plays out in the modern world setting. I have to believe they’ll fall in love there too.
Hart of Dixie — Are there some over-the-top southern stereotypes in this show? Plenty. Do these usually bother me in shows and movies? Yes. Yet, despite those, there are lots of reasons to love this show, particularly the characters. Dr. Zoe Hart is a heart surgeon who has to get some real-world experience as a general practitioner if she has any hope of getting the position she wants back in New York. So off she goes to Bluebell, Alabama, a place as different from her experience as possible. I just love Zoe, and there are two potential love interests in her life. Some people like George, who is the town lawyer but also engaged, but I’m in the camp of local bad boy, Wade Kinsella. I’d love to see Zoe fall for the one guy she’d never expect to.
Grimm — Detective Nick Burckhardt learns he is a Grimm when he starts seeing things he can’t understand. A Grimm is a supernatural hunter. He can see the creatures who hide behind human faces. I also love that he’s being helped, albeit reluctantly, by one of the beasts he’s not supposed to trust, a blutbad (big bad wolf) named Eddie Monroe (played by the wonderful Silas Weir Mitchell, previously of Prison Break).
Terra Nova — I’d been waiting for this one ever since I heard the first mention of it being created. In a future where things are so bad on planet Earth that people can’t even breathe the air safely, a portal back in time is found and groups of people are sent back to the time of dinosaurs to start over. In addition to the cool story, there are two other reasons to enjoy this show — Jason O’Mara (who plays lead Jim Shannon, a police officer) and Stephen Lang (who plays Commander Taylor, head of the Terra Nova colony; he was also Col. Quaritch in Avatar). Are you watching any of these shows? Other new programs? Tell us about them. And what are some of your returning favorites?
If you were standing in a field surrounded by all the shows on television, you could pretty much throw a rock in any direction and hit a reality show. They’ve boomed in popularity in recent years because they’re easier and cheaper to make than scripted television comedies or dramas. And I’ll admit I’m a fan of Survivor. It’s my mind candy. But, to me, there’s a difference between “reality” TV like The Real Housewives of Atlanta or Celebrity Apprentice and what I refer to as real reality TV, things like Deadliest Catch and Extreme Couponing.
While some “reality” TV is all about the manufactured drama, the drama on Deadliest Catch is all too real. Lives are at stake as the fleets of crab fishermen take to the Bering Sea in the most dangerous job in the world. There’s nothing manufactured about giant waves coming over the sides of the boats or engine failures that could lead to the disaster of the boat capsizing.
Extreme Couponing is a show I’ve gotten into lately. I don’t have the time or the dedication to go to the extremes these couponers do, but it has inspired me to coupon on a smaller level and save money I can use on other things. But I’m endlessly fascinated by how these couponers get hundreds of dollars of groceries and other products for next to nothing.
I decided to ask the other Banditas if they have any favorite real reality shows. Here’s what they had to say.
One show I like is Must Love Cats. It features a guy who fancies himself a minstrel and who…loves cats. He travels the country to highlight people involved in rescues, unusual kitty things, i.e. a woman in Dallas who invented “Kitty Wigs”. I kid you not, she fashioned different styled little wigs to put on cats and takes their pictures. Evidently, people have gone wild for it.
Another story involved a cat who woke up his owner and alerted him to their neighbor’s house being on fire. A woman who runs a sanctuary that holds 600 cats. Her motto is “They may not find a home, but they’ll have a life.”
It offers me reassurance that despite my propensity for buying my baby cats toys….I’m NOT at crazy cat lady level yet, LOL.
The other one is My Cat from Hell. This is interesting in that a cat behaviorist goes into psycho kitty households and tames the wild beasts…and their owners who are partly to blame. I discovered a slow blink of the eyes reassures your cat that you are not a threat. I tried it with Grayson the Monkey Cat who gave me a “what’s up with that look.” It’s also given me my new idea on how to train them off the counter. We’ll see.
My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding is the new one I started watching recently. Freaky deaky insights to Irish Travellers lifestyle. Kind of like Jersey Shore meets the Amish type of thing. TLC is a learning channel…but BOY…some of the things you learn!
I watch Border Wars on NatGeo. I started out watching it as research but then just got interested in the various problems Customs & Border Patrol staffers face. Some of the ways people hide things in vehicles are mind-blowing.
The dh likes American Pickers. I think he fantasizes that they will show up here, clean out our clutter, and finance the boy’s college education. No harm in dreaming.
I love What Not to Wear, the British version, with Trinny and Susannah. It’s not just a makeover show. They really dig into why a woman might let herself go or only dress in power suits at work, and it’s a very cathartic process for the women who go on there. I often find myself in tears (yes, I’m a watering pot!) when I see the struggles these women go through. Another favourite is The House of Tiny Tearaways, which is sort of like the Nanny only it’s a psychologist who brings three families to live in a house together for a week. All the families have difficult children, but it’s often the parents who need to sort out their own issues and it’s fascinating for a writer of romance to see the real emotional struggle there to make a relationship work. Plus, I pick up tips on dealing with my boys when they’re troublesome! Oh, and of course, The Antiques Roadshow. Every item has a story and that’s what I love about it, as well as seeing beautiful things my Regency characters might have owned.
I would have sworn up and down that I didn’t watch reality shows, until I realized that those shows I love on the Food Network are, um, yeah…reality shows. I love the competitions. Cupcake Wars, Iron Chef and Chopped are total faves. Mostly because they are 1-episode competitions and I don’t have to worry that I forget the shows exist when I fall into deadline and miss them for a month or so. But I have gotten sucked in to The Next Food Network Star and The Next Iron Chef.
I have a few…my favorite is One Born Every Minute, which is the Lifetime show based in Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus. They’ve posted 47 cameras all throughout the L&D unit and it’s what “really” happens. Cracks me up!
Then there is the cooking competitions, Top Chef, Top Chef Masters, The Next Foodnetwork Star and Chopped! Uhm, Project Runway and The Next Design Star are pretty good.
And sadly when my insomnia starts in at 1 am, I have to confess I do like one Housewife show…NY. The rest drive me crazy, but I actually like Jill and hate Ramona. (Sigh, they do say confession is good for the soul!). But honestly, for me it’s like watching a train wreck. I can’t imagine agreeing to meet someone I can’t stand for lunch, let alone go on a trip with them! Seriously, people, just walk away and don’t have any further contact!
I’m not a big fan. I’d much rather watch a scripted show (and keep the writers employed). I do watch the auditions for American Idol – not so much the final shows, and I used to watch the auditions for So You Think You Can Dance. I often see parallels in the judges’ comments and the responses to the sort of things we see in the writing world. But like I said, I don’t really watch the shows when it comes down to ranking up public votes. My favorites never win…maybe because I never vote (grin).
My faves are Top Chef, So You Think You Can Dance, The Voice, and Project Runway. I love that they call out the best in people and challenge them to play full out. The drama comes in when people try to worm out of being responsible for their decisions or their performances. :> Grins. Or when they make the wrong decision and try something that’s a HUGE stretch and they don’t commit fully and so it fails. Or succeeds brilliantly because they DO stretch.
~~~ Okay, dear readers, are you a fan of any of the shows mentioned? Or are there other “real” reality shows you enjoy? Let us know which ones and why.
Earlier this week, I watched the series finale to Stargate Universe. And while it was a really good episode, I was upset afterward. Why, you ask? Because SyFy had canceled the show, but the cancellation came too late for the show’s writers to wrap up the story. It ended on a big cliffhanger! I want to know what happens to the crew of the Destiny, dang it! I hate when this happens, and I seem to have this talent for liking shows that end up in some sort of similar demise. So I thought today I’d talk about shows that I feel didn’t get the chance they deserved and were canceled too soon.
1. Firefly — This is my all-time favorite show. After all it combined two of my favorite genres (westerns and sci-fi), was created by Joss Whedon (who is awesome!), had that fantastic Whedon dialogue, and…what was the other thing? Oh, yeah, it starred Nathan Fillion. It lasted less than a season and I blame FOX for showing the episodes out of their intended order for part of the failure. Don’t even get me started on how much I loathe the powers that be for canceling this show. But fans did get the movie Serenity after the cancellation. And if there’s any doubt about how popular this show was with its fan base (known as Browncoats), you only have to go to Dragon*Con when any of the stars are there. I’ve waited in lines for 3 hours, lines that wrapped around the downtown Hyatt in Atlanta close to three times. The people in the back of the lines never got in because the number of people in line always exceeded the fire marshal’s limit for the huge ballroom. And the lines for photographs and autographs with these stars are always very, very long. (Hey, look, it’s me with Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk!)
2. Jericho — This post-nuclear attack drama had so much more to explore. And it had Skeet Ulrich — I love Skeet Ulrich. It was canceled after one season, but a highly publicized fan campaign in which fans sent the network tons of nuts gave it a second chance. But the network canceled it again only 7 seasons into the second season.
3. Roswell — Three alien teens who landed at Roswell pass as human and fall for humans. My YA-loving heart loved this show. Katherine Heigl and Colin Hanks had two of their earliest roles on this show. It lasted three seasons, but I think it could have gone a couple more.
4. Veronica Mars — Another wonderful show with snappy dialogue, great characters, and the best father-daughter relationship on TV played by Kristen Bell and Enrico Colantoni. It was a modern day Nancy Drew mixed with the sass of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And I loved the romance between Veronica and Logan.
5. Legend of the Seeker — This fantasy series based on the Sword of Truth series of books by Terry Goodkind was a lot of fun and welcome in a TV landscape that doesn’t have a lot of fantasy in it. I liked this show so much that I dressed as one of the main characters at Dragon*Con last year.
6. Moonlight — Vampire show starring the oh-so-easy-to-look-at Alex O’Loughlin. It was canceled after one season.
7. Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles — This was an interesting take on the Terminator stories starring Lena Headey, who is in Game of Thrones now. Sarah kicked ass. Cameron, the working-for-the-good-side Terminator kicked ass (and was played by Summer Glau, who also kicked ass in Serenity). In case you can’t tell, I like strong female characters who kick butt.
8. New Amsterdam — Only got 8 episodes before being canceled by FOX. It was about an immortal, 400-year-old NYPD officer who’d been in Manhattan as a Dutch soldier in 1642. Starred Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, who is also in Game of Thrones.
9. Invasion — This alien invasion show only got one season, though it was conceived as having a five-season arc. So, guess what. Yes, viewers were left with lots of questions.
10. Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe — Atlantis got five seasons, but I still think it could have gone several more. And SGU got the plug pulled after two seasons even though it was getting better all the time. That’s the problem now — shows have to be a hit out of the gate with no room for a slow build, or they get the ax. I don’t think shows like The X-Files would be able to make it in today’s cut-throat TV world.
11. Men in Trees — Quirky show set in Alaska. I love stuff set in Alaska with quirky characters (hello, Northern Exposure, I’m talking to you too). I think they killed this one because they resolved the love interest too soon.
So do you agree with any of these? Or are there other shows which you think were canceled too soon? Did they leave you with burning questions? And just how annoyed were you when you found out they’d been canceled?
So I broke up with my old gym. We’d been happy together for two years or more but things had gotten stale. Boring. Expensive. It wasn’t any one thing but sometimes you grow apart, you know? It’s not you, it’s me. These things happen. Maybe we should take a break.
I decided to have a look around, see if there was an option that fit my life a bit better. As it happens, there was. The Community Center.
The Community Center has a pool. My old gym did, too, but this pool is a zero-depth-entry, chock-full-of-slides-and-toys, warmer-than-bathwater type pool. Much better for my skinny children whose lips turn blue when they so much as stroll past the beach.
The Community Center also has an indoor playground, access to which comes free with membership. A nice bennie when you live in The Land That Summer Forgot. Snow’ll be flying up here pretty soon–an indoor playground will be nice to have.
The Community Center is also next door to the library (this family’s idea of nirvana), has a preschool (which my youngest attends), and costs less than half what my old gym did.
However, the CC (as it will henceforth be known because I am a lazy typist) lacks one thing. TVs on the cardio equipment. Our old gym had TVs on all the treadmills & elliptical machines. You just plugged in your headphones, picked a station & off you went for your sweaty twenty minutes or whatever.
At the CC, there’s a bank of TVs hung on the wall & you have to tune your personal radio (who the heck has a RADIO anymore??) to the FM band indicated on the wall under each TV. That’s the only way you can listen to the audio. Otherwise, you have to read the closed captioning they’ve conveniently turned on.
Now this isn’t a problem for me. I’m happy to read the screen. My husband feels this is a crime against fitness but that’s a different blog. No, what I want to talk about today is the joy of being forced out of my usual TV watching rut.
See, running isn’t fun. When I run indoors, I need to be diverted. I need to be absorbed or I spend too much time thinking about how very unpleasant running is & wondering if it’s over yet. (It’s not.)
So I need some gripping TV, & I’m not interested in taking a chance on an unknown quantity. I like shows I *know* I like: reality shows where talented people work under time & material pressure–Top Chef or Project Runway. I like a good soapy drama–Dawson’s Creek is a big favorite. Or something clever and quick–That 70′s Show still kills me. (I have a friend Kitty Foreman only wishes she were.) The West Wing is a good one, too.
But at the CC now I have a whole smorgasbord of shows on at once & none of them are what I usually watch. It’s talk shows (Ellen Degeneres), trashy talk shows (Maury Povich, I think), and soap operas.
I went with the soap. Now I haven’t followed a soap opera since I used to watch the Bold & the Beautiful in college and I have to say, it’s nice to see they’re still burying people alive. (And putting them in comas and having secret babies, all of which happened in the time it took me to log four miles.)
My favorite was the buried alive story line. They’d sealed this woman (an exquisitely groomed sixty-something) into a crypt with a cell phone & a security camera. This allowed her to both see and rail against the idiotic young things who wandered by for some crypt-side musing, and have vitriolic chats with the villain who’d buried her.
Watching a grande dame shriek, “I’M IN THE CRYPT, YOU STUPID COW!” at a clueless mourner remarking on the unlikeliness of her sudden death was awesome, too. We don’t get enough scenery chewing from Women Of A Certain Age. I’m all for more of that. I wish they’d bring back the turban as a hairstyle, too, now that I’m thinking of it. Liz Taylor rocked the turban. More turbans!
I think I’m going to like my new gym.
So how about you? Do you follow any soaps–now or ever? What’s your favorite storyline? Secret babies? Long lost lovers? Premature burial? Back-from-the-dead lovers? Evil twins? Do you watch TV while you work out? What do you watch? And if they brought turbans back, would you wear one?
I struggled this month to come up with a topic about which I had something to say. I tried two or three and ended up erasing them all. I sat back and let my mind wander. What had I been thinking about lately? And then it hit me.
For the past few years, I’ve been a big fan of the Discovery Channel’s reality show Deadliest Catch. Unlike many low-brow garbage reality shows, Deadliest Catch actually has a ring of reality to it. Each week, we’re taken on a journey into the deadliest job in the world, crab fishing on the volatile Bering Sea. I’m amazed at what these guys face just to keep the world in crab legs. They fish in hurricane force winds, huge seas that will tip a boat without thinking twice, and crippling ice that can sink a boat in no time flat. They haul up crab pots while it’s way below zero and they’re soaking wet. It looks like my idea of hell, quite frankly.
But it’s not the crab that interest me so much but rather the people who go out in search of them, their very human stories. We see so many sides of these guys — the utter fatigue after working for 20 hours straight, the frustration when the crab pots come up empty and they’re basically working for free, the jubilation when a crab pot comes up full, the thought and effort that goes into some of the best practical jokes on the planet, the grief when they lose one of their own (at a staggering rate of one person per week during crab season). We are witnesses to fights among the crews, injuries, near-death experiences, the stress captains constantly live with, family dynamics since many of the boats have multiple family members on board, and the sort of wild cowboy mentality many of these guys have. It’s obvious from the start of the theme song — Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead or Alive” (“I’m a cowboy, on a steal horse I ride”) — to the shots of the chain smoking and bleeped words.
To be honest, I probably don’t have a lot in common with these hardy fishermen, and I think that’s part of what makes Tuesday nights fun. I get to watch a slice of life I’ll never experience, get glimpses into the lives of people who aren’t just characters, who haven’t gone soft with the ease of modern society. They’re real, and over time you grow to feel like you know them even though you’ve never met. Sig Hansen of the Northwestern‘s hard-driving fishing style, Johnathon and Andy Hillstrand’s hilarious senses of humor aboard the Time Bandit, the Harley-driving/rock-and-roll listening/tell it like it is lifestyle of Phil Harris on the Cornelia Marie and his insistence that he could smell crab farts (which met with much teasing). I can’t tell you how many times I’ve laughed out loud at Johnathon’s crazy jigs in the wheelhouse when the fishing is good or been on the edge of my seat as the Coast Guard races into horrendous weather to rescue a crew in trouble.
I’m the kind of person who gets attached to fictional characters even though I know they’re not real. When Buffy killed Angel in season 3, I bawled like a baby! So when it’s real people, it’s even harder to watch — and yet you can’t stop watching. There have been deaths on Deadliest Catch through the years, but they were never among the featured crews. The boats going down emphasized that this is, indeed, the deadliest job in the world. You saw how it affected the crews we did see each week. And you prayed that this never happened to them. So far, it hasn’t, thank goodness. But this season suffered a major loss anyway. In January, while in port at St. Paul Island, Alaska, Captail Phil Harris of the Cornelia Marie suffered a major stroke and had to be flown to Anchorage. He pulled through the initial surgery to relieve pressure on his brain and looked to be on the mend before he suffered a second event and passed away in early February, leaving his sons Josh and Jake, deckhands aboard the Cornelia Marie, to keep his legacy alive. For a guy who wasn’t hot on a cameraman in his wheelhouse in the early years, it was amazing that he asked to see the cameraman who’d become his friend while he still couldn’t talk. He wrote on a piece of paper to keep filming, that “you have to get the end of the story.” And thus, we witnessed the final days of Phil Harris and all the raw emotions felt by family, friends, his crew and fellow captains. Just thinking about that makes me want to cry.
And I’m not the only one who felt this way. Millions of people love this show, these crews, Phil. They’ve converged on memorial services and shed tears, filled online message boards to bursting, and watched Phil’s final few episodes to the tune of 5 million viewers — astounding numbers for a cable show. Phil provided endless hours of entertainment, but perhaps one of the most important things he left with viewers was the knowledge that we should cherish every day because we never know when it might be our last.
It’s Father’s Day here in the U.S. and in honor of such a special holiday, I thought I’d combine two of my favorite subjects:
Sexy guys and T.V.!
Here are some of my current favorite TV Dads:
Kyle Chandler as Coach Eric Taylor on Friday Night Lights. As I’ve probably mentioned here before, I love me some Coach Taylor! He’s sexy and charming and he adores his wife and daughters and really wants the best for the boys he coaches.
Peter Krause as Adam Braverman on Parenthood. I’ve only caught about half of the episodes of this show but the character of Adam always shines as he deals with his own two kids, his parents’ marital problems and his siblings’ issues.
Scott Bakula as Chuck’s father Steve on Chuck. Things didn’t end well for Chuck’s dad but I’ve loved Scott Bakula since his Quantum Leap days so I had to include him here *g*
Thomas Gibson as Aaron Hotchner on Criminal Minds. The character of Hotch is fascinating. He deals with evil every day and yet still does his best to be a good father to his young son.
Timothy Hutton as Nathan Ford on Leverage. Nathan’s only son died but there isn’t an episode where you don’t witness his grief over losing his beloved child.
Who are some of your favorite TV Dads, either current or from the past? And since it’s always a fun topic here in the lair, who are some of your favorite Star dads? I know we’ll have a few votes for Johnny Depp as well as Hugh Jackman
One of the best things I’ve ever done is get a subscription to Netflix. Not only does it have loads of movies and TV shows available, but it also has the feature where you can watch certain movies/TV shows instantly on your computer or, if you have a Netflix ready device, you can stream them directly to your TV (we use our Xbox live account).
It’s because of this wonderful device that I now have a new addiction:
Leverage. (It’s a TV show on TNT *g*)
Now, believe me, I could go on and on about how much I love this show. The acting. The character arcs. The story lines. But I won’t. For today, I’m going to concentrate on one of the main reasons I am so crazy about this show:
The three male characters are all sexy, smart, funny and have that certain edge about them that makes them dangerous – and appealing (in a purely fantasy sort of way *g*)
Nate Ford, played by Timothy Hutton, is an ex-insurance investigator who is now the leader of a band of thieves who help their clients go up against everyone from dirty politicians to corrupt businessmen to mobsters. Nate is clever and devious and can usually outsmart just about any adversary. He’s also cynical, battling alcoholism (a battle he usually loses) and filled with bitterness over the death of his young son.
Alec Hardison, played by Aldis Hodge, is an expert computer hacker. Well, calling Hardison simply a computer hacker doesn’t exactly do his skills justice, not when he can break any code, create new identities or even alter surveillance video. He’s proud of his geekiness, freaks out at violence and at times, has let his team down (like when he missed a mission because he was up all night playing video games).
Eliot Spencer, played by Christian Kane, is what the show calls a Retrieval Specialist, but really, he’s the firm’s muscle. He can take out an entire gang of bad guys all with just his fists. He hates guns, is soft spoken and is an excellent cook. Oh, and did I mention that he totally kicks ass?
Now, on paper, these guys don’t exactly come across as ‘hero’ material but that’s only if you haven’t watched the show. Because if you have seen even just one episode, you’d know that Nate may be lost and angry at the world but his sense of justice, his desire to help those in need is stronger than his desire to self-destruct.
Hardison may make mistakes, but he always makes it up to his team and he takes his job of gathering the Intel the team will need to work their cons seriously. He may complain and get cold feet sometimes, but he always pulls through in the end.
Eliot keeps his emotions bottled up but he has a soft spot for his ex-girlfriend and horses (not necessarily in that order *g*). He may get knocked down, but he always gets back up.
So, we have three men who are less than perfect and yet, they’re growing and changing, turning into better men right before our eyes. And isn’t that what some of the best heroes do?
Who are some of your favorite anti-heroes in film, TV or books? What TV shows are you currently loving? Are there any other Leverage fans out there?
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