I watched every single episode of the sopranos in just over six weeks

stelfox

Beast of Burden
Anyone else ever do this? It's a pretty jarring process with The Sopranos, because of the years between the series and the way that you see the characters grow old incredibly rapidly — like those sped up films of blooming flowers etc— but it's also a pretty great way of watching TV because it really intensifies your relationship with the characters. My reasons for doing this were 1) unemployment and 2) not being able to get regular TV in my flat, which means I have to download everything I watch 3) wanting to see what was the better series: The Wire or The Sopranos. I'm actually siding with The Wire, but there's really not much in it. All thoughts on TV-viewing strategies and The Wire vs The Sopranos throwdown welcome...
 

john eden

male pale and stale
That sounds heavy, I watched series one in the space of about a month, but that doesn't compare.

Don't go spoiling the last series for me tonight, ok? :p

And every single episode of Twin Peaks in 24 hours. :)

You are right, I think about the relationship with the show. I find it quite hard to establish all the characters, beefs, families, etc. But that means I can watch it all again one day...
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
And every single episode of Twin Peaks in 24 hours.

Including the 2nd series? That's a shorrt cut to madness.

I watched the first 3 series of the Sopranos in about a month, then stalled as someone lent me...The Wire. Raced thru the first 3 sries in 3 weeks and I'm on edge till the 4th comes out on DVD.

I prefer The Wire, I think. Sopranos is an American soap with fantastic characters, but I like the fact The Wire has an agenda, spreading out from one small housing projects to go right inside the police, city hall, the old working class, (and I believe schools in season 4) - it feels like a TV Bonfire Of The Vanities.

To be honest, I also prefer it cos it's that bit more blokey.
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
That said, i watched an ep. of season 5 las night where Janice has to go anger management classes after beating up a soccer mom. She's doing really well (suspiciously well, but never mind), until Tony comes round to dinner, gets jealous at her new self-control and deliberately winds her up to snapping point.

Has there ever been a nastier, more despicable hero?
 

stelfox

Beast of Burden
i read somewhere that one of the the creators of the wire said that the aim of the show was to destroy contemporary america, which is a pretty great mission statement, if indeed that is what was said. i do know for sure that ed burns is a former baltimore cop who then moved into teaching in inner-city schools. it's this really deep understanding of the way a decaying city functions that i love about the show. it's not just cobbled together by a bunch of professional screenwriters who've decided to create a grand and sweeping greek tragedy about drug dealers and cops. it's written by a guy who really understands how every aspect of the city's life is interlinked —corruption exists is every level of society, from the streets to this highest levels of public office; globalisation's destruction of old industry and job security (i.e. the port) actually open the city up to crime (people traffic and drugs); failing schools and outmoded education programs are shown as feeder academies for the corners. it's so well thought out. i think that this intricate teasing out of real issues can only really be achieved by people who have real-life experience of their subject. i also love the way that it forces you to watch differently to anything else on tv — that you need to view each series as part of a bigger story, and each episode as a chapter without clean and tidy resolutions. in fact you watch this rather like you'd read a novel. for these reasons, i think it trumps the sopranos it terms of form and content. the issues dealt with are much, much bigger and, while the sopranos is great at occasionally subverting televisual conventions, the wire completely and totallly ignores them. it really is a truly original work that's really important, whereas the sopranos, to me, is an admittedly great exercise in somewhat backslappily intertextual and snappily scripted one-hour entertainment.

series four is really quite great crackerjack. marlo is one mean motherfucker. that is all i'll say.
 
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hucks

Your Message Here
I prefer The Wire, I think. .......
To be honest, I also prefer it cos it's that bit more blokey.

That's interesting. Me and my girl have just done series 2 and 3 in the last 4 weeks and she has occasionally remarked on how male it is. But all the female characters in it are incredibly well drawn - they aren't the token women you see on your average cop show. I thought D'Angelo's mum in particular was amazing to watch, how she changes over the three series.

In terms of viewing strategies, I've never done more than 4 episodes in a night, and liberal use of the pause and rewind buttons is a must. If only to occasionally work out what the hell people are saying.

Having just finished series 3 I'm out of wire now. Can't wait for series 4 to come out on DVD.
 
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mistersloane

heavy heavy monster sound
I don't have a TV so the opportunity to watch intensively something that's had alot of work put into is great; I type opposite a picture of Omar. The Wire might be a boy's thing, but it's fucking got a revolutionary character in terms of homosexual realism in him.

And I don't need to write anymore about it cos I agree with every word Stelfox wrote!
 
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crackerjack

Well-known member
In terms of viewing strategies, I've never done more than 4 episodes in a night, and liberal use of the pause and rewind buttons is a must. If only to occasionally work out what the hell people are saying.

Thank fuck - thought was just me going deaf.
 
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Grievous Angel

Beast of Burden
I really want to get into the wire but the first series seems hard / expnsive to get on dvd...

i've been consumed by lost (seen it all now, thanx torrents) and west wing (just started final series). Sopranos looks great but somehow i just can't keep still for it, same for six feet under.
 

UFO over easy

online mahjong
I don't have a TV so the opportunity to watch intensively something that's had alot of work put into is great; I type opposite a picture of Omar. The Wire might be a boy's thing, but it's fucking got a revolutionary character in terms of homosexual realism in him.


Also, Snoop. I actually thought she was a boy for quite a long time - and that's quite interesting in itself. The way she presents herself, the way she talks, the way she walks even. She's probably the most terrifying character in the whole season alongside Chris.

I don't think The Wire is a boys thing at all - it's superficially about boys, and about that culture which is very male-oriented, but it's relevant to everyone who lives in a city. Or even everyone that lives in the west. Like you said, it also deals with how that culture affects other aspects of society. I know as many girls that like it as boys, although it's not really available on tv here so.. there's still not many of them :)

stelfox said:
series four is really quite great crackerjack. marlo is one mean motherfucker. that is all i'll say.

:D

Everything you wrote before that too is spot on. I actually thought season 4 was the best so far. Season 3 was slightly disappointing - loved it still, the actual storylines were brilliant, but the presentation was far pretty hollywood. extremely action packed and Dramatic with a capital D. Compared to the first two seasons anyway. The Brother sums it up completely, he was so out of place. He's straight out of a cheesy gangster flick, and doesn't sit well at all with the rest of the show.

season 4 got the balance right, and they dealt with the schools thing without being overly preachy, which was a surprise. it also made me absolutely hate Herc. Poor guy. He's just too stupid.

Grievous Angel - The Wire season 1 for 25 quid including delivery http://www.play.com/DVD/DVD/4-/728467/The-Wire-Complete-Season-1-Box-Set/Product.html :) buy buy buy! it smacks both six feet under and the west wing to pieces, and decimates lost.
 
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mistersloane

heavy heavy monster sound
Also, Snoop. I actually thought she was a boy for quite a long time - and that's quite interesting in itself. The way she presents herself, the way she talks, the way she walks even. She's probably the most terrifying character in the whole season alongside Chris.

She's series 4, right? Hasn't been released in the UK yet, and we rent them from the local video shop - sentimental, but supports local business lol.

What I think is so great about Omar is that - aside from knowing people in the past who were very similar (that drag queen in Brixton who held up a post office in full gear, for example) is that he totally conforms to a trickster archetype, it's just spot on.
 

UFO over easy

online mahjong
She's series 4, right? Hasn't been released in the UK yet, and we rent them from the local video shop - sentimental, but supports local business lol.

What I think is so great about Omar is that - aside from knowing people in the past who were very similar (that drag queen in Brixton who held up a post office in full gear, for example) is that he totally conforms to a trickster archetype, it's just spot on.

Yeah I think that stuff is all season 4. I'm a serial downloader...

Omar is just basically a total superhero :D there's that fantastic moment in season 2, maybe my favourite scene in the entire show where he's in the courtroom destroying the evil lawyer... "you are a parasite, mr little! you leech off desperation" etc... "so are you man! I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase" - BAM!

couple of bits have become sort of catch phrases for me and my (white, middle class, drug free) friends - "I rip and run", and "I rooobbzz drurg dillas"

awesome
 

Grievous Angel

Beast of Burden
Grievous Angel - The Wire season 1 for 25 quid including delivery... buy buy buy! it smacks both six feet under and the west wing to pieces, and decimates lost.
THANKS! Though I don't believe it can be better than Lost and the West Wing - horses for courses I know, but those two series just put me in ecstasy. Lost is just the best thing I have ever seen, whether TV or film.
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
Yeah I think that stuff is all season 4. I'm a serial downloader...

Omar is just basically a total superhero :D there's that fantastic moment in season 2, maybe my favourite scene in the entire show where he's in the courtroom destroying the evil lawyer... "you are a parasite, mr little! you leech off desperation" etc... "so are you man! I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase" - BAM!

couple of bits have become sort of catch phrases for me and my (white, middle class, drug free) friends - "I rip and run", and "I rooobbzz drurg dillas"

awesome

That's absolutely positively my favourite scene too. I posted the youtube clip to some blog I was briefly employed by, but they took it down because it was too 'urban' (why they couldn't just say 'black' i don't know). Love the bit where he just grins and hollas at Bird.
 

zhao

there are no accidents
i watched the first 2.5 seasons of Weeds in about 4 days while down with a cold. beat that.
 

Grievous Angel

Beast of Burden
Nah, that's cool!

I bet he skipped the history bits in the third volume.

Anyway, Amazon now has series 1 for 18 quid so I am ordering right now. Really excited at the prospect of getting such great telly. Actually, in the last year or so we've been making a conscious effort to make time to watch TV, or rather, TV box sets, instead of spending yet more time working / writing / designing / doing music - i.e. on the sofa rather than on computers. Done properly telly is fantastic.
 

mixed_biscuits

_________________________
I watched all 18 episodes of the first three series of Peep Show last weekend whilst in the bowels of an interminable planning session for school. I did it in reverse order, too - 3, 2, 1. Mighty impressive, eh?
 
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