Television

Conviction: S1E6 #StayWoke

Conviction is just going for it and taking no prisoners.

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This episode’s case is about a white cop who was shot at a black activist rally as she was working crowd control, and a white jury found a black defendant guilty.

It’s very racially charged, with the cast being divided on who is, or should be guilty, and who is, or should be, innocent.

It’s brave of the writers of this show to take on such a strong social inequity, especially against the backdrop of current times.  I think it’s sometimes easy to forget that screenwriters are Californians, and they have the power to write shows that are watched by the entire rest of the country, and it’s incredible that they take the time to show the struggle between the two sides.

Hayes character is becoming more fleshed out, and thank goodness for that.  The angry adult woman acting out against her mother and family and silver spoon was not going to hold up for much longer.  The struggle will be to keep her character going from this point forward.

Television

Timeless: S1E5 The Alamo

Yes, we all remember the Alamo.

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So it’s obvious that I wrestle with this show for a bit.  It’s kitschy and entertaining and fun to watch, but as far as deep meaning or value goes, it can often gloss over the important bits in lieu of adventure.

It’s not that the show is particularly dense in what the overall stories are, but since we’re leaving those stories behind in order to focus on whatever point in time we travel to, the point in time has to be interesting.

And interesting is not what the Alamo is.  Inspiring, yes.  A great point in Texan history, yes.  But as far as an exciting chain of events go, individual battles aren’t the truly interesting part of history.  It’s the aftermath of what happens, and it’s difficult to share that on screen.

This episode was a strongpoint for Wyatt, the soldier sent along to protect them and kill the bad guy.  You got to see him and his dedication to others around him, which is a real saving grace for his character.

I’ll keep watching.  The history major in me can’t stop.

Television

Conviction: S1E5 The 1 Percent Solution

The Hayley Atwell show continues.

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Hayes has finally pissed off her family enough that they are giving her the silent treatment, and I’m happy about that because there’s less characters that take away time from the main cast and the investigative team who are really the interesting people in this show.

The case this week is about a young man who was helped out by a very well-off family (a Blind Side reference was definitely made). The case is less interesting than previous ones, probably because rich people doing bad things is a trope that has definitely been overused.

I have to be honest, this continues a trend of the show being more interesting than the case. A huge problem for a show that’s designed to be a case per episode that’s supposed to support the stories of the cast. Perhaps the writers could watch a few episodes of Criminal Minds, who has perfected the art of telling a two interconnected stories.

There was a redeeming moment for the previously hated character of Hayes’s mother, which will hopefully make her family life more interesting to watch.

Episode 5 is probably the weakest that I’ve seen so far. I need there to be more at stake in the lives of these characters. Fingers crossed that this happens.

Television

Timeless: S1E4 Party at Castle Varlar

I forgot the entire reason why I love this show and I’m sorry.

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My last review of Episode 3 got a little bit harsh, and I think the film major part of me got too strong.  See, most of being a film major is being overly obsessed with “substance” and “deeper/hidden meaning” and now it’s gotten to the point where when something exists almost purely for the entertainment value, I sometimes forget the value in that, and I’m sorry.

So, now let’s go back to Timeless.  Episode 4: The Nazi Episode.  Because nothing that goes back in time could ever ignore the presence and existence of Nazis.  Just watch the History Channel.  The only things that occurred in history are Nazis and aliens.  And sometimes Romans.

American Nazi supporters in 1944.  Once again, this show does confront something that has prevalence to the modern world.

And here we meet Ian Fleming.  Who worked as an actual spy before writing the infamous James Bond series, who they must work with in order to stop the Nazis and the evil Flynn from…whatever their plan is.

Really the most exciting part is that we as an audience now see the start of a budding romance between the two lead characters, and that’s truly all that matters because the chemistry between them is so strong my TV is about to explode.

Now that I’ve returned to a point of just being entertained by this show, it’s so much more enjoyable.  It’s exciting, and adventurous.  We know how adventure works from years of Indiana Jones and King Arthur and seeing adventures, and this show brings the undeniable sense of adventure into the modern age.

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Conviction: S1E4 Mother’s Little Burden

Conviction just gets better.

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This episode was a good one.  The storyline flowed evenly, as Hayes attempts to calm a scandal about her and how she got her job.  We are getting deeper into the characters and their lives, and the drama is building, and remaining extremely believable.

The case this week is deciding whether or not a mother is guilty of killing her autistic son who frequently abused her.  There’s family drama, legal drama, and the two keep me invested in the classic “whodunit” question.

The characters are likeable.  All of them have qualities that make me invested in them and their story.  They have flaws and pasts and secrets that keep their characters from being a generic trope in the legal drama genre.

I’m really hoping that the heavy dependence on reenacting crimes goes away at some point.  I can see why it’s used in the show; it helps to keep the interest in the crime, and helps to confirm innocence or guilt, but it’s not particularly enjoyable.  It might just be a personal taste, but I find it halting to the actual action.  (Unless it’s being used as a device to begin a love story between two of the characters because I 100% hope they end up together).

The show is slowly becoming less the Hayley Atwell show as the writers are slowly involving and building up the other characters, and I’m really enjoying it.

Television

Timeless: S1E3 Atomic City

The kitschy-ness is starting to rub off to reveal a deep lack of substance.

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We begin with Lucy Preston, the main character, attempting to acclimate to her new life that has been changed with their changing of history. Before much can happen, we are whisked away back to work, where she learns they’ll be traveling to Vegas in the 1960s, where Jack Kennedy will make an appearance.

The characters mesh into the world, once again, fairly easily and quickly. It’s during this time we meet the creator of the time machines (who I thought was dead) but apparently is with the villain for some reason. We get no answers, only more questions, which I’m assuming will go unanswered.

The stakes in this episode don’t seem nearly as high as previous ones, probably because the story of JFK has been beaten to death with a stick by film and television, especially in the past few years. Not a good choice for a third episode.

I’m hoping episode 4 picks up the show a little bit, because episode 3 was a definite lull.

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Conviction: S1E3 Dropping Bombs

Conviction is continuing to build its characters into something marvelous.

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It’s taken some time, but they’re slowly starting to build up the cast of characters beyond the main character, Hayes.  They’re an assorted cast, a rising yet jilted golden boy, a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed bleeding heart young woman, a toughened black woman who carries a lot with her former work in the police force, and a former criminal forensic.  They’re starting to grow and actually be a part of this show.

The problem?  I still don’t know any of their names.  I know who they are in relation to this show, but they’re still just there as props to the rest of the story, and to keep the case moving along.  They still don’t feel truly invested in this show like the other characters.

The real strongpoint of this show is that it’s unafraid to take on intense cases that are prevalent to the current society.  Like this episode, trying to pardon a white bigot accused of bombing a mosque?  That’s pretty hefty, and kudos to writers and the show for taking on this kind of case.

I’m finding myself more and more worried about the happiness of Hayes Morrison, which is also super important.  It may come from my previously mentioned love of Hayley Atwell, but seeing this character get knocked down repeatedly and seeing her still stand up and get her work done is supremely motivating.

The show is building up slow and steady without the issue of feeling like it’s plodding along.  I’m excited to keep watching.