Saturday, December 08, 2012

Andrea's Years Out-Of-Date TV Picks: Part 2!

All my TV watching comes from the Internet these days since I don't receive any TV channels anymore (I'm too cheap to pay for cable for one person). Streaming TV online means that I tend to watch the entire series of older programs in short bursts of obsession. Here's what I've been into recently.

Two programs: both feature an independent and confident female protagonist with a distinctive fashion sense. Both originally aired about five years ago and I watched both with English subtitles. Otherwise, these are totally different types of shows.

Forbrydelsen/The Killing
Country: Denmark
Originally Aired: 2007
Series length: Season 1 is 20 1 hour episodes, Season 2 is 10 episodes, Season 3 is still in progress
I first heard about it: because apparently this is Duchess Camilla's fave show
Main Character: Sarah Lund
Her iconic style: handknitted Faroese jumpers
My take on the show: 'The Killing' is dark and complicated (to my mind, anyway). I got so addicted that I watched the whole first season in about a week. Sarah Lund is a Copenhagen police detective who gets drawn into a complex investigation involving a close-knit family and a popular politician. I wanted to make a comment here on the structure of the first season but I think even the most general statement about that would be a spoiler. I will say that Season 2 was nowhere near as compelling or believable as Season 1 and it wasn't really worth the time I invested. It doesn't help that I can only find a poor quality amateur subtitled version of Season 2. Season 3, on the other hand, is still airing and I haven't seen it but the word is that it's much improved over S2.
Stream English subtitled episodes here


Country: Japan
Originally Aired: 2008
Series length: 10 45-minute episodes
I first heard about it: from this post on The Wisteria Bridge blog
Main Character: Handa Sen
Her iconic style: amazing kimono and old fashioned accessories
My take on the show: I confess that I find almost all Japanese television to be unwatchable. To me, the shows are contrived and overacted. 'Osen', however, is not too bad. Osen, played by Yu Aoi, is the young proprietress of a traditional Japanese restaurant. She's a charming character who enjoys her sake and speaks in rather old-fashion language. Osen manages the restaurant and its staff in her own unique, gentle way. She also has the nicest hair I've ever seen. In addition to the beautiful kimono fashions, the show highlights elements of traditional Japanese culture (food, architecture, housewares, customs and so on).
Stream English subtitled episodes here

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