morgan_dhu: (Default)

So, The turning of the year has come and gone. Our celebration was as always quiet, perhaps more so this year because we have had an annus horribilis which has only just barely begun, we hope, to improve.

So we sat in the living room and exchanged gifts and ordered a feast of Chinese food and watched the Doctor Who Christmas special, and the Murdoch Mysteries Christmas special, and had a lovely time.
My prezzies were wonderful.

A long list of ebooks:

Andrea ​Hairston, ​Lonely ​Stardust ​
Carter ​Scholz, ​Gypsy
Charles ​Saunders, ​Abengoni: ​First ​Calling
Charles ​Tan ​(ed), ​Lauriat: ​A ​Filipino-Chinese ​Speculative ​Fiction ​Anthology
Chinelo ​Okparanta, ​Under ​the ​Udala ​Trees
Craig ​Laurance ​Gidney, ​Skin ​Deep ​Magic
David ​Pilgrim, ​Understanding ​Jim ​Crow
Deborah ​J. ​Ross, ​The ​Heir ​of ​Khored
Deborah ​Wheeler, ​Collaborators
F.H. ​Batacan, ​Smaller ​and ​Smaller ​Circles
J.M. ​Frey, ​Hero ​is ​a ​Four ​Letter ​Word
Jackie ​Hatton, ​Flesh ​& ​Wires
Jeanne ​Theoharis, ​The ​Rebellious ​Life ​of ​Mrs. ​Rosa ​Parks
Johanna ​Sinisalo, ​The ​Blood ​of ​Angels
John Miller, Judi Dench: With a Crack in her Voice
Katharine ​Kerr, ​Dark ​Magicks
Marge ​Piercy, ​My ​Life, ​ ​My ​Body
Michelle ​Sagara, ​Cast ​in ​Honor
Minister ​Faust, ​The ​Alchemists ​of ​Kush
Rachel ​Pollack, ​Alqua ​Dreams
Sheree ​Renée ​Thomas, ​Shotgun ​Lullabies
Silvia ​Moreno-Garcia, ​Signal ​to ​Noise
Sumiko ​Saulson, ​Things ​That ​Go ​Bump ​In ​My ​Head

And the extended version DVDs of Hobbit II and Hobbit III

morgan_dhu: (Default)

So I've been feeling pretty sick this past week - kind of par for the course - but I think I'm going to try to get out to the living room tonight and catch up on some TV viewing. Lately I've been watching the British SF show Humans, and enjoying it immensely, but last night was the last episode of that. I'm also watching Rizzoli and Isles, Killjoys, and (sporadically, and i'm quite a bit behind) The Lost Ship, and I'm working my way through Sense8.

What shows are other people watching and enjoying this summer? Anything new and good that I might have missed hearing about?

Rumours

Nov. 10th, 2008 08:38 pm
morgan_dhu: (Default)

OK, this is only one of at least 50 rumours going around about actors who might be in the running to place the Eleventh Doctor, but the first mention in this totally speculative article actually caused me to loudly squee with untrammelled delight at the mere notion of its occurrence.

Chiwetel Ejiofor.

I've been mad about this actor ever since I saw him in Dirty Pretty Things. He was intense in Serenity, totally awesome in Kinky Boots, riveting in Children of Men... need I go on? (I'm still waiting to see some of his latest releases because they're not out on DVD yet.)

Chiwetel Ejiofor as the Doctor. It's a match made in heaven, if he wants the gig.

Yes, Bill Nighy would be fun, and Robert Carlyle would be hot and James Nesbitt would be dark and quirky and Sean Pertwee would be a sentimental favourite, Richard E. Grant or Hugh Grant could be endearing, and both Paterson Joseph and Colin Salmon have the chops for the job, and yes it would be cool to see a the Doctor as a woman, but...

Chiwetel Ejiofor. It's got to be the best casting rumour yet.

Memage

Apr. 6th, 2008 06:04 pm
morgan_dhu: (Default)

Found on [profile] goodlookinout's journal:

Empire Magazine has revealed its list of the "50 Greatest TV Shows" ever. Below is the list and here be the rules.

1. Bold the shows you've watched every episode of
2. Italicize the shows you've seen at least one episode of
3. Post your answers


Perusing the list, I would think that this was drawn up by people who have only seen the last 20-odd years of mostly American television. Even if we exclude all news, talk, sketch comedy and variety shows (The Ed Sullivan Show, The Carol Burnett Show, Laugh-In, That Was the Week That Was? - were these not great?) where is All in the Family? M*A*S*H? The Honeymooners? I Love Lucy? The Dick Van Dyke Show? The Twilight Zone? The Prisoner? The Fugitive? Have Gun Will Travel? Perry Mason? Hill Street Blues? Cheers? The Avengers? The Waltons? St. Elsewhere? Prime Suspect?

Anyway, here are my responses to this particular, and particularly flawed, list.


50. Quantum Leap
49. Prison Break
48. Veronica Mars
47. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
46. Sex & The City

45. Farscape
44. Cracker (This is, I assume, the British series)
43. Star Trek
42. Only Fools and Horses
41. Band of Brothers

40. Life on Mars
39. Monty Python's Flying Circus
38. Curb Your Enthusiasm
37. Star Trek: The Next Generation
36. Father Ted

35. Alias
34. Frasier
33. CSI: Las Vegas
32. Babylon 5
31. Deadwood

30. Dexter
29. ER
28. Fawlty Towers
27. Six Feet Under
26. Red Dwarf

25. Futurama
24. Twin Peaks
23. The Office UK
22. The Shield
21. Angel

20. Blackadder
19. Scrubs
18. Arrested Development
17. South Park
16. Doctor Who (Ok, I might have missed a couple of Patrick Troughton episodes on original airing that are now lost forever, but otherwise, yes I've seen them all)

15. Heroes
14. Firefly
13. Battlestar Galactica (same goes for both series)
12. Family Guy
11. Seinfeld

10. Spaced
09. The X-Files
08. The Wire
07. Friends
06. 24

05. Lost
04. The West Wing
03. The Sopranos
02. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
01. The Simpsons

morgan_dhu: (Default)

I've been watching a very interesting 4-part series on the American PBS channel for the last couple of weeks, called African-American Lives.

The set-up is that a group of about a dozen high-profile African-Americans, including Tina Turner, Don Cheadle, Chris Rock, Morgan Freeman, Maya Angelou and Jackie Joyner-Kersee (these being the people I was familiar with through the media) agreed to have their family histories searched, making use of every available methodology including genetic testing and comparisons with several different genetic databases.

As a Canadian, I didn't (and still don't) know much about the specific history of black people in the U.S., but watching this has taught me a lot more than I used to know. It'a also brought home to me once again how powerful is the emotional impact on a whole people who must, in order to examine where they came from, face the fact that their mothers and fathers were the property of others, and that for many there is no way to go through the loss of family connection to the past and to a place that has been an almost universal experience of the African diaspora.

Watching it has made me think again about a book I read a couple of years ago, Dionne Brand's A Map to the Door of No Return: Notes to Belonging (my original review is here).

Even though my ancestors were driven from their homes, forcibly loaded into boats for a voyage across the Atlantic during which many died from the poor conditions and brutal treatment, only to disembark in a country they had never heard of before, at least I can trace my family names back to specific places in the outer islands of Scotland, and my family, when they arrived in Canada, were poor, but they were not property. I can imagine, but I can't understand in my heart and in my gut, and probably no one else who can say what I can say, can understand either, what it means to have those two facts overshadowing anything and everything one knows about one's past, one's family, one's history, one's roots.

Which is part of what makes certain moments of this TV show so powerful: watching the faces of these people as they are shown the records of family members identified in the slave schedules, or listed in wills ot bills of sale, as they visit a piece of land owned by a free ancestor, or find a marked grave, as DNA evidence links them to a particular African people and gives them a past that stretches beyond the darkness of the middle Passage.

morgan_dhu: (Default)

I used to watch a lot of modern police procedurals - the CSIs, the L&Os, a few others - but I've really been falling away from them in the past year. I suspect that, once the writers' strike is over and new episodes of shows are flowing (that is to say, next season, one presumes), very few of them will be left on my weekly watching list.

But oddly enough, I've just started watching, and enjoying, two historical police procedurals:

The Murdoch Mysteries is set in Toronto in the 1890s and features police detective cum amateur natural scientist William Murdoch, who bring the use of unorthodx investigative tools such as fingerprints and primitive forensic science to his crime-solving. I'm not going to claim it's great television, but it's fun in its own modest way. The made for TV movie I saw, which starred Peter Outerbridge rather than the recast series lead Yannick Bisson, was rather better in many respects, but it's still amusing.

City of Vice, a new British series that I've been ::aheming:: for the past two weeks, is rather of a different quality. Set in London in 1755, it's a fictionalised account of the Bow Street Runners, and has so far been much less anachronistic as well as featuring better writing and acting. I'm quite intrigued so far.

Other than that, my viewing list of current TV shows, setting aside the standard news, documentary and political satire shows that are the things I always watch if I happen to be around a TV set when they're on, consists of:

The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Torchwood
Criminal Minds

The only things I see myself adding to this list at the moment are Doctor Who and ReGenesis when the next seasons of each are available, and Blood Ties if it survives.

In non-current shows, I've recently ::ahemed:: the first series of The Sarah Jane Adventures which, despite being very much for a younger audience, were rather fun. At least enough that if they really do make a second series, I'll ::ahem:: that too.

And, a special announcement just for [personal profile] hawkeye7:

I've watched the first four episodes of Blake's 7 and I am hooked. It's exactly the kind of dismal dystopian future universe with a band of misfits struggling to raise some kind of resistance against the evil totalitarian overlords kind of thing I love. And so far it's smart, and the character dynamics are interesting to watch. It's got story arc, it's got ethical questions and quagmires, appears not to have a reset button, and I'm not sure why I failed to investigate it and appreciate its greatness before.

morgan_dhu: (Default)

Yes, I'm talking about Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Two episodes in and I'm seeing a lot that could be very, very cool about this series.

What worries me is this.

Here is a list of the new TV shows that I've gotten excited about in the past couple of years:

The Dresden Files - cancelled
Painkiller Jane - cancelled
Blood Ties - taken off air, status highly uncertain
Heroes - season 2 went to the dogs

Maybe I should be trying to hate Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. That might increase its chances of success.

Of course, the new Doctor Who and Torchwood appear to be doing OK, but that's British TV, which is different somehow.

And speaking of both British TV and Girls who kick ass, I caught the hour-long premiere/Christmas special of The Sarah Jane Adventues on BBCKids the other night. Unfortunately, I see no sign of the half-hour regualr season episodes in their schedule as yet, so I'm oging to have to ::ahem:: the episodes, I fear.

Yes, they're for kids, but the first episode was fun.

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