The Blacklist

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by stj, Oct 16, 2013.

  1. stj

    stj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The antihero trend built up by Breaking Bad et al. continues. This series is centered on James Spader's performance. This series obviously intends to reverse the arc, presenting Spader's Raymond Reddington first as Heisenberg, then revealing his inner Wallter White self, as his relationship to tyro profiler Elizabeth Keen is unveiled. (Probably she's his daughter.)

    In episode 1, Reddington's plan led to the suicide of a mad bomber and the seizure of a weapon of mass destruction by unknown parties. In episode 2, Reddington poisoned Isabella Rossellini, a sex slave trafficker. In episode 3, Reddington shot to death a computer tech. In episode, Reddington threw a man into a vat of acid.

    The universal gist of reviews I've seen is that Spader is delightful but the rest of the characters are too dull. While it is true they haven't killed anyone yet, the Tom Keene character, who seems like a fourth grade Mr. Chips, is alleged to be someone horrible, which is mildly provocative I thought.

    Any comments?
     
  2. auntiehill

    auntiehill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^I'd say the antihero trend started long before Breaking Bad, but that's neither here nor there.

    I'm enjoying this as well, because of Spader. He is just so damn good in this role, it's ridiculous. The guest actors they get to be the baddies (er...OTHER baddies) have so far been top notch. As you said, the FBI characters are all a big yawn, however, and the female lead is not terribly interesting or believable...at least not yet. I mean, how could she NOT confront her husband about the box in the floor? I find that terribly hard to swallow.

    Still, watching Spader's character manipulate everyone around him so masterfully, and eliminate other evil doers in the process, is pretty darn awesome. So, I'm going to keep watching for now and see what happens
     
  3. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Spot's Meow Premium Member

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    I am really enjoying this as well. It really feels like Spader's not even playing a character, this is just who he is. It's very convincing and draws you in. The female lead is starting to grow on me, and I am actually liking her a lot now as well. As has been said, the other characters aren't very memorable (proven by the fact that I honestly can't remember any of them right now :lol:), but that may change over time, and it's not bothering me too much at the moment.

    There are a couple of scenes that become a little difficult to believe, such as when she jabbed the pen into his neck in the first episode, but overall it's a very entertaining show.
     
  4. od0_ital

    od0_ital Admiral Admiral

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    If it weren't for James Spader, I wouldn't give a damn about this show.
     
  5. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Jim is cartooning it.

    So much more charismatic on the Office.
     
  6. Aldo

    Aldo Admiral Admiral

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    Out of all the shows I watch that depict law enforcement and/or Government agencies, this is the only one where I really have to suspend by disbelief to watch it. To think that they'd let Spader's character roam free in between cases is a little hard to swallow.

    That said, I really love this show. I think it's one of my favorite new shows of the season (along with SHIELD), I'm really interested in finding out why Reddington is so drawn to Lizzie (I'm thinking he could be her father...but that might be too cliche).

    Incidentally, NBC picked this show up for a full season, so we'll at least have it for a while (unless the ratings tank really hard in the next few months).
     
  7. Mr Light

    Mr Light Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah I'm confused about that, I thought he was a prisoner but episodes open with him in another country making deals with criminals...
     
  8. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    He has a tracking tag inside his shoulder that can only be removed surgically.

    And if he removes it, the deal is off.
     
  9. Aldo

    Aldo Admiral Admiral

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    I had forgotten about that, actually.

    It's been said that since he knows most of the people on the Black List through his criminal dealings, that in order to hide the fact that Reddington's working for the FBI, he is to remain his criminal activities, lest he tip someone off.

    A bit hard to swallow, but like I said: for this show you really have to suspend your disbelief to enjoy it. And I enjoy it, so I must be doing something right.
     
  10. JiNX-01

    JiNX-01 Admiral Admiral

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    This^

    I do agree that Lizzie needs a personality transplant.
     
  11. ManOnTheWave

    ManOnTheWave Vice Admiral Admiral

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    As others have said, the rest of the cast is rather a blank space. But I don't need them, I have James Spader being effing creepy. I love this show.
     
  12. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Spot's Meow Premium Member

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    When he does that licking his lips, squinty eye thing I get positively creeped out.
     
  13. lurok

    lurok Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Ditto.

    I don't mind the female lead in a blank canvas sort of way. And it's nice to see Parminder Nagra. But yes, show is a mess. And the Tom Noonan/Dollarhyde rip-off/homage was just dull.
     
  14. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Yep, the other characters are decent wallpaper, but James Spader's character is the over the top chandelier that just lights up the rest of the room. I watch this show for him, and I like it.
     
  15. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    James Spader is amazing in everything he does. Without him this show would be a failure. The FBI is pretty much useless, but not to a The Following level, and all boring and been there done that feel. then Spader is on the screen and it's masterful.
     
  16. lurok

    lurok Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I wonder if this is one of those shows where, rather than cancel the whole thing, they could recast/reformat around Spader. I'm trying to think of examples where that might have happened with a TV series before.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2013
  17. Hau’oli Lanui

    Hau’oli Lanui See where the sky meets the sea, It calls me Premium Member

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    I agree with everyone that James Spader makes this show. Without him, I don't know if I would continue to watch. While many have speculated that he is the father of Elizabeth Keen, I don't think so. Especially after seeing last nights episode, the picture he took out of the book of the young woman, I think that was his daughter.

    The one thing I really like about this show is that the 'main' story only takes up about a half hour of the whole show. The beginning part and tail part of the episode are devoted to the bigger mystery. It's very refreshing, it's kind of like two shows in one.
     
  18. od0_ital

    od0_ital Admiral Admiral

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    The first thing that came to mind was Facts of Life. The series started out in an all girl dorm with a huge ensemble cast, but then got cut down to just focus on four or five of the girls & the den mother.
     
  19. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, there was no Jo in season one!

    Boston Legal was a killing field.

    After Boston Legal, it's possible that Spader might have taken provisions against signing up to another charnel house.
     
  20. Borgminister

    Borgminister Admiral Moderator

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    Spader is the one who makes the show, no doubt. I like the production and pacing okay, and the twisting plots are being handled all right for now too, although that can only continue so long before it gets old.

    The latest episode with the cleaner should've felt more menacing, but the female FBI agent seems incapable of truly projecting disgust or fear or any depth of emotion. The cleaner himself was very creepy, but a bit more depth in his back-story would've been appreciated.

    Calling the Spader character a monster for killing the cleaner in a Dexteresque moment made me roll my eyes. Are you kidding me?