Monday, March 28, 2005

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Well, the big season two finale of Carnivalé has come and gone, and, well, I for one was very disappointed. I suppose it was because we were led to believe that the big "final confrontation" between Ben Hawkins and Brother Justin would occur, and there had been no third season announcement, so there was a definite perceived air of finality about the whole thing.

It's true, there was a confrontation, but (and I spoil here, so LOOK OUT) it was far from final. And then we get another plot twist tacked on at the end, which adds yet another layer of illogicality to what has become a hugely unwieldy and horribly convoluted narrative. It's like the show's creative people had all these super nice toys, but didn't know how to play with them so they began throwing stuff at the wall to see what stuck. Dumb coincidences, logic-defying character actions and motivations and many what-the? moments were the order of things for the majority of the second season, and while there were many memorable scenes and great lines, as a whole season two just didn't work for me as well as season one. I'm still on board, I suppose, even though the shark, she may have been jumped- there's just too much potential, even after all that's happened so far, for me to ignore it completely. Hopefully, we'll get a season three, if nothing else but to clear up a lot of the mess.

I'm not disappointed with season two of Deadwood, though- it's just as audacious, overripe, and fascinating as last season and even though we're just four episodes in we've already had a whole season's worth of wow-inducing scenes and dialogue. It's even educational- I had never heard the term "gleet" before! Right now, they're on such a roll that they can take an actor who played a key part in season one- Garrett Dillahunt, who played Jack McCall, the murderer of Wild Bill Hickock- and bring him back as a totally different character (the unlikeable agent of William Hearst, Mr. "W") and it works just fine. No sharks in the South Dakota streams just yet.

While I'm on the subject of my recent TV viewing, I also caught (over the last couple of days) an excellent documentary on Frida Kahlo, The Life and Times of.... As someone who's become interested in her work over the last few years, mostly thanks to the Salma Hayek biopic, I found this absorbing.

And, of course, I've been watching the NCAA men's tournament on and off, including Kentucky's double overtime loss to Michigan State yesterday afternoon. Tough loss, since both teams were pretty evenly matched and played a good game, but somebody's got to lose, and frankly I didn't have my Wildcats advancing as far as they did when I made out my brackets.

That's all I got for now...

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