So What Are My Favorite Things : TV Dramas

These are some of my favorite things…. This is a line from the famous musical but today, I want to write what I am into right now!

I’m going to kick off my list of my favorite things with this genre : TV dramas!! I feel I am really stupid to pay 30 bucks every month for TV. I thought of quitting subscriptions to some of the TV companies. Well, I did. I stopped subscribing CBS on-line (or the word to that effect) but if you take a look at all the shows I am watching every week, you see why I cannot stop subscribing all these TV stations. (Within parentheses following each title, I put the TV company and my ratings)

1. Game of Thrones (HBO)  (9.9):

Well, this is the best show I have ever seen! This is all-time best. Wait what? Not so fast! I love Fringe. I also love Seinfeld. I love Twin Peaks and X-files. But, yeah, I love this best of all the shows. Maybe Fringe is almost the same level as this but I love books and Game of Thrones is also my all time fave book series.  The story is good! Actors and actresses are good ( I love Lena Headey! ). It is so hard to avoid spoilers these days but I am managing. I KNOW NOTHING! So don’t post any spoilers, please!

2.  West World (HBO) (9.7)

Another nominee for my best TV sci-fi drama for 2016! I watched the old movie version of West World. That’s why I started watching this. If you lived like 52 years and love movies and TV shows, you have seen quite a lot of movies. And I should not forget to mention Ed Harris and Anthony Hopkins. I will gladly pay 20 bucks to watch the movie if one of them appears in it and even if the movie sucks, I will say, maybe next time. I trust them that much! And it was more than my expectation. A tad spoiler here. You cannot expect what will happen. The future version of Game of Thrones working in this series. There’s even the famous red wedding like incident! So addicting! I cannot wait for season 2!!

(Added later : J. J. Abrams, the producer of Fringe, is another reason for my watching this show)
3. Stranger Things (Netflix)    (9.2)

When the night has come and …. Well, this is a part of the lyrics of Stand By Me. You know what I am getting at, right? When I first watched this show, I didn’t expect that much. Well, well, well. What a pleasant surprise! These kids killed it! I liked Winona Rider. Well, I saw her in the Beetlejuice for the first time then I hear her name time and time again. That’s the only thing I knew then wow! Seriously? These kids can act! The first …. (Opps, Spoiler Alert! I mean, I will give a heads-up to myself! I will keep mum!) Anyway, if you like Stand By Me by Stephen King, you will not regret it!


4. Legends of Tomorrow (Netflix) (8.5)

A little gap between Top 3 and below. I will write what I like and well not really like about superhero stories in DC Universe. I feel helpless when I watch all those vigilante stories. Too sad. Too downcast. ThisLegends of Tomorrow offers me a silver lining. If too many bad things happen to heroes, I feel downcast even if those heroes prevail. So I put this in top of all the other heroes.

5. Daredevil (Netflix) (8.0)

Superheroes are about tragic, unfortunate humans with super power. They have to go through a series of hallowing ordeals. Daredevil, Luke Cage, Jessica Jones…. Maybe all the vigilante heroes’ role model is Christ. Chris is the epitome of all the heroes, anyway. They have to go through rough times (more than that). I want to make Daredevil a tad less miserable, though. I cannot stand too much misery and pessimism.

(OBTW, you know my love for NYC! I lived in Upper Westside and took the train (the subway) to school in Chelsea area everyday for 5 weeks. I visited and walked around under those awnings in the Hell’s Kitchen, too. So how can I not love these series???)

5.  Luke Cage (Netflix)(8.0)

Same as above. I like him. I like stories. A tad too many deaths but still bearable. This is my limit. If it is not a first-person drama like Game of Thrones and West Worlds, I think it is fine. But if I kind of synchronize with one person and too many bad things happen to the protagonist, I get disturbed. This show is on the perimeter of my limit. The threshold of unbearableness.

5. Arrow (Netflix)(8.0)

The same here. It is just too many deaths. I mean, it is fine but I sort of want my heroes to find their significant others. I like Sara and she is dead. I loved Felicity and she broke up on him and got killed! Well, too many deaths. And I find many of super hero stories are somewhat misogynistic.

5. Gotham (Hulu)(8.0)

Again the same. I am still at odds whether I should give more points to this than other “#5s” because this is not really a first-person story so I can “enjoy” violence. I can dismiss them as mishaps in fairy tale. Something surreal! If too much focus is on Bruce Wayne and cataclysm happening to him, I might not like it but it is more about a bunch of future villains (well already are but) so I can take the story lightly. Besides I feel safe because there will be adult versions of Cat Woman and Batman so they are not going to die. It is interesting because I like Game of Thrones because I cannot predict who will survive the season. That said, except for Ned Stark, those who I thought would survive survived so far.

9. Lucifer (Hulu) (7.5)

I usually rank this type of light comedy. Well, this is a tad different. I like the theme. And maybe it is this actor who play Lucy perfectly. I saw many Lucifers in the movies and dramas including the famous one and only Louis Cyphre in Angel Heart. Well, I like this Lucifer. I wish Lucifer is someone like him. Oh, sorry, God. I am not selling you out. I don’t want to be da..ed for all time.

10. Flash (Netflix) / Jessica Jones (Netflix)  / Night Of (HBO) / A Series of Unfortunate Events (Netflix) (7.0)

OK. These shows. I love them. Flash lacks some qualities like Arrow. Maybe it is the good enemy that lacks. Jessica Jones…. I like this adversary of Jessica Jones Season 1, Kilgrave is one of the best villain along with Joker of Batman. The reason why I ranked Jessica Jones here as number 10 is… I got scared! It is sooooo real! I don’t give a spoiler but if you watch it, I will give you a heads-up and fair warning. You will see grotesque scenes. I admit to the fact that I turned my face away from the screen of my MacBook and closed my eyes a couple times especially later in the shows. If you are one of those people who get traumatized from gruesome bloody scenes, do not watch this. Though I said I cannot stand too much brutality, it does not harm me. I just got disgusted by it. So I am fine. If I can take more of violence and brutality, I rank Jessica Jones 4th or 5th on this list. Oh, btw, Game of Thrones and West World also team with gruesome scenes but at least I feel the scenes in those dramas are surreal. The ones in Jessica Jones are so real. And Night Of and A Series of Unfortunate Events. These two are good! I cannot say they are flawless and impeccable. That’s why I ranked them here. But they have potentials.

Now the word is this year I can get to watch sequels of Twin Peaks!! Whatever that is, I am ready to be pleased!  Then all the new seasons of almost all the shows I listed above!! I work hard to pay 30 bucks a month to get the subscription going and look forward to the night-in (I coined from the expression, nigh-out) in front of my PC. Nothing beats the great sensation (so far borrowed words from Agent Cooper in Twin Peaks) when I watch my fave shows with my favorite beer or bourbon in hand!! 🙂

And if there are English learners out there, nothing is better than understanding these dramas in original! If you can feel every connotations and tones of voice and facial expressions. You don’t even have time to glance at Japanese captions or English captions for that matter!!

Before I leave, thanks for reading all these and if you have any comment, please leave it here. I like talking and listening to other people’s perspectives as much as expressing mine.

Pictures of NYC : Left Top: the view form a pizza parlor in Hell’s Kitchen ; Left Below : A view from my apartment somewhere above 100th street in Upper West Area (very close to Harlem) ; A view of some street in Upper West Side (I am not sure but around Columbus 80 something).






About dw64 (or Masa(aki) or Mark)

I am 52-year-old Japanese male. Ever since I watched Sesame Street when I was VERY young (5 years old?). I fell in love with American English and culture. I learned English hard and now I am teaching it. Then when I was 18, I had an opportunity to stay with an American family in Shell Knob, Missouri and I asked them to educate me as an American kid. So they taught me the American way and even my taste for food has changed completely so I call this rebirth! Then when I was 30 (I visited the U.S. several times but they were short stays), I joined the MA course in teaching English of graduate school in Vermont. I stayed about 10 months there (it was an intensive course). I stayed in a dorm and learned a lot inside and outside of classrooms. I got all the credits but I failed because of the difference in the context between the U.S. and JAPAN cuz it is so hard to teach English in The way I learned in the course because in Japan, teaching is about understanding grammar and structure in Japanese. But my journey does not end here. Last year I was admitted the CELTA course in NYC where I worked hard and got this certificate that certifies that I had finished the course and qualified to teach English to people who want learn English as a second language by Cambridge University standard. So if you are one of those people, send me a message and I can help you learn American English (I got this at Cambridge but basically they teach different English depending on location). Why did I pick NYC? Well, I am a huge fan of American everything! I live the country even when that demagogue guy is the President so I am an authentic fan of it. I mean, I love the U.S. more than anything in this world. There was a guy who loved Japan so much so after he retired he came to Japan and became a citizen. I want to do the same, actually. So now I am so into it, I listen to NYC CBS radio 880 all the time except when I watch dramas on Netflix, HBO or HULLU or read paperbacks on Kindle (read 70 books in the last two years). And then I am writing in English. I hope to be able to write something publishable in the future but I have to learn some more. As for my learning, I have almost done usual stuff so now I decide to do things that native speakers who wish to be writers will do. At least I learned 8000 words and phrases in the last couple years and I confirmed that I know more than 22000 words, which is tantamount to the number of words American graduate school students have. Well I might talk about these things, too, but I will talk about my favorite things in this blog. I love American dramas. I love the ones with some sci-fi portion in it. Like, from HULU, Gotham, Lucifer, Fringe, etc. I love good comedies so I love Seinfeld, SNL and night shows. Netflix? Luke Cage, Daredevil, and other defenders. I love legends of tomorrow, too. HBO, Game of Thrones!! And I also loved Night of and West World. I also might talk about cycling (road biking) and all other stuff! Please feel free to comment!
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