Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘HBO’

Yes, I know — I took way too long.

I did have a (very) rough draft written, which I soon found was no good.

I basically went with a premise similar to that of Ross Douthat — namely, that the way G.O.T. ended constitutes a missed opportunity.

Rather than using the fantasy genre as a way of appropriately unnerving people and casting a gleam of wonder on their perception of the world, it errs on the side of “getting it over with” so as to get back to what seems overly dominating of people’s interests and concerns: Politics.

On second examination I came to question that a little bit. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Okay — so in part one we made a comparison between Game of Thrones‘ Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish and the wife from the Brothers Grimm’s “The Fisherman and His Wife.”

Whichever character you’re looking at, the trajectory is essentially the same. (more…)

Read Full Post »

I remember some buzz being generated a few years ago about the amount of action in Game of Thrones that could be traced back to Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish (Aiden Gillen).  Were I pressed to venture a guess, I would probably put that amount at about 95%.

Two or three of Littlefinger’s actions in Season One produced major domino effects, but even more (more…)

Read Full Post »

So Game of Thrones is over.

As a cultural phenomenon it will, I’m sure, endure indefinitely.  But the world no longer watches as the story unfolds.

I must confess my chagrin, as a devout Catholic, over an apparent dearth in Catholic voices conversant with G.O.T.  Most of what little (more…)

Read Full Post »

Game_of_Thrones_Season_6I wasn’t sure whether I was going to watch Game of Thrones this year.  After some hemming and hawing, I decided to give it a shot (I’ve stuck with it this long, haven’t I?).

As it turned out, season six (more…)

Read Full Post »

TrueDetectiveDVDCover

NOTE: This is the third in a series of commentaries on HBO’s True Detective, season one; for the other two, click here.

You may skip the first post if you wish.  I would, however, read the second (the one focused on Marty Hart), only because I am following a pattern set by the series itself: Marty (Woody Harrelson) is the initial primary focus, and next it will shift to his partner, Rustin “Rust” Cohle (Matthew McConaughey); this current post will function as a transition of sorts.

So here goes… (more…)

Read Full Post »

Marty HartNOTE: You may wish to read the Introductory post before reading this one, though it is not strictly necessary

Martin “Marty” Hart (Woody Harrelson), a seasoned detective with the Louisiana State Police homicide division, is one of the two major “faces” of True Detective, season one.

Marty is the detective, but now we get to do the investigating (corny line, but I couldn’t resist).  So let’s get started… (more…)

Read Full Post »

TrueDetectiveDVDCover

My commentary on HBO’s True Detective (season one) is going to be a bit more incremental than I would have liked.  But hey, such is life.

To begin, I offer some brief reflections on two genres that converge in the series:

Mystery

Nic Pizzolatto, creator/producer/writer of True Detective, is a lapsed Catholic…a fact that intrigues me to no end.  The mystery genre has fascinated Catholic writers for a long time; one thinks of G.K. Chesterton’s Father Brown series as well as the works of Dorothy Sayers and Msgr. Ronald Knox, to name a few examples.

When we hear “mystery,” we instinctively think of crime — especially murder (morbidity seems to be a perpetual characteristic of human fascinations).  But mystery has a much broader meaning.  It evokes what is, but is not known.  It deals with what is hidden, and yet beckons the searching mind.  And the mind of the detective, in turn, seeks to know.

St. Thomas Aquinas’ theory of human knowledge is of interest here.  The latter said that the human mind is of such a character that it can receive the form — meaning the essential nature — of what it sees, hears, learns about, etc., as the mirror receives the image of what is reflected in it.  So in a certain sense, the mind “becomes” what it knows.

That said, it is not surprising that the protagonists of a mystery story should undergo a journey of self-discovery in searching for answers…nor, on the other hand, that the danger of encountering evil is not merely external.

Moreover, individual mysteries point beyond themselves to a greater Mystery.  We all have some sense — however vague, however much sequestered in the subconscious — that our lives are part of something much bigger, and of much greater consequence.  In this infinitely greater context, there are signs of grace and unseen providence.  We see this in the many Deus ex machina moments in mystery stories.

Southern Gothic

Anyone who has ever visited the American South knows that it has much to recommend it — nice weather, remarkably friendly people, vibrant cultures, and so much more.

But the South is also a place with very troubled memories.  Think of the more than 200 years of slavery that plagued this region of the country.  Think of the untold suffering of millions of souls under the yoke of abject servitude.  Think of the long history of voodoo and the dark arts practiced in many parts of the South (perhaps in some cases stemming from a distrust of the ersatz Christianity of white slaveholders).

And if this is not enough, think of the turmoil occasioned by the Civil War and Reconstruction.

We should not be surprised that many creative minds — Flannery O’Connor, William Faulkner, Tennessee Williams, and Johnny Cash, to name just a few examples — would find plentiful material for artistic exploration of the dark side of Southern existence.

What we have in the Southern Gothic genre is a profound insight into the reality and depth of the world’s dysfunction, the acuteness of suffering, and the darkness in the human heart…in a word, sin.

But the Christian mind will also see the mystery of the Cross, by which Jesus Christ has subsumed all evil and conquered it, making even it a vehicle of His Grace.  We do see a something of this more hopeful understanding of suffering and evil at the end of True Detective‘s first season, and I think it’s all the more captivating for the dark corridors the viewer must traverse in order to get to it.

I hope all this makes sense, and that it has garnered your interest.  As I proceed with my analysis of True Detective, these basic observations will inform much of what I have to say.

*********************************************************************************************************************

Acknowledgements

1. “TrueDetectiveDVDCover” by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:TrueDetectiveDVDCover.jpg#/media/File:TrueDetectiveDVDCover.jpg

Read Full Post »

A few of my favorites/honorable mentions, listed in no particular order…

Saving Private Ryan

We Were Soldiers

American Sniper

Unbroken

Glory

Trailer Link (Turner Classic Movies): http://i.cdn.turner.com/v5cache/TCM/cvp/container/mediaroom_embed.swf?context=embed&videoId=1091318

Band of Brothers

Trailer Link (Internet Movie Database): http://www.imdb.com/video/imdb/vi3629711385/imdb/embed?autoplay=false&width=480

Read Full Post »

Whew!  Ever wish life didn’t keep you so busy?  I sure do — if only so that I could blog more often.

I intend to get back into the proverbial saddle over the next couple months (especially since next month marks the three-year anniversary of “Into the Dance”), and I thought I’d offer a quick look at some of the post topics I plan to cover (not necessarily in this order):

1. True Detective

TrueDetectiveDVDCoverI recently “binge-watched” the first season of the HBO series True Detective.  While disturbing at times, the show is artistically excellent and very profound.  I have a lot to say about it, especially with regard its treatment of marriage, manhood, family, and existence.

2. The Rosary

RosaryOctober is the Month of the Rosary, one of the most beautiful and powerful treasures of the Catholic Faith.  Before the month is out I’d like to share a few things about this prayer, and hopefully answer questions people might have (feel free to leave some in the comment section here, if you’d like).

3. Drug/Alcohol Awareness

HeroinOctober is also when “Red Ribbon Week,” which is dedicated to drug and alcohol addiction awareness, falls.  I used to work in this field myself (in the prevention department), and I do have some insights I’d like to offer — not only for those addicted to alcohol or illegal drugs, but also for anyone who might be caught in the midst of addictive habits that may seem deceptively harmless in and of themselves.

Last but not least…

4. My New Blog

question mark

I intend to embark on the adventure of starting a for-profit blog in the very near future.  I will post a link and detailed description when the blog is up and running.  Until then, I won’t say too much about it…but here’s a hint: If you have children, relatives, pupils, friends, or other acquaintances on the autism spectrum — or if you yourself are on the spectrum — you may be interested.

That’s all for now.  Thanks for stopping by, and God bless 🙂

*********************************************************************************************************************

Acknowledgements

1. “TrueDetectiveDVDCover” by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:TrueDetectiveDVDCover.jpg#/media/File:TrueDetectiveDVDCover.jpg

2. “An Egyptian Rosary with a Coptic Cross, 2010” by Silar – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:An_Egyptian_Rosary_with_a_Coptic_Cross,_2010.JPG#/media/File:An_Egyptian_Rosary_with_a_Coptic_Cross,_2010.JPG

3. “Anal Heroin” by Psychonaught – Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Anal_Heroin.jpg#/media/File:Anal_Heroin.jpg

4. “Question opening-closing” by Vadmium – Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Question_opening-closing.svg#/media/File:Question_opening-closing.svg

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »