Wednesday, September 22, 2010

DVR Guide - "Sons of Anarchy" and "Terriers"

I've already praised "Sons of Anarchy" quite a bit during my time here at the Soap Box Office so I'll keep this short and sweet. For the uninitiated, the Sons of Anarchy are a motor cycle gang based out of Charming, California. The MC (motorcycle club) have a wink-wink relationship with Charming and her police department wherein they provide protection and keep drugs out of the city in exchange for the right to run guns inside her borders. The leadership of the Sons is always a point of contention, as the president of the club Clay (Ron Pearlman) and step-son/vice president Jax (Charlie Hunnam) differ on the direction of the club, and there is always another gang or group looking to cut in on the Son's territory.

Put simply, this is the best show I'm currently watching. (Fighting the urge to say "best show on TV" given that I'm not caught up on "Mad Men" or "Breaking Bad" which seem to be the critical favorites for that title.) We're now two episodes into Season 3 and it is officially hitting its stride. The group dynamics have grown stronger with the entire club coming together to fight a common enemy. (I'm not going to give anything away for anyone who might want to catch up.) Meanwhile, Katey Segal (of "Married with Children" fame) has truly become the glue that holds both the characters and the show itself together. A truly outstanding program.

Verdict: Season Pass

Centering around Hank (Donal Logue) and Britt (Michael Raymond-James), a pair of seriously low rent private investigators, the tone of the pilot is light hearted, highlighting the fact that these guys aren't above a slightly illegal operation if it means paying the rent. Soon, however, they find themselves wrapped up in a case that pits them against a local big wig who (probably) had an old friend of Hank's murdered.

I'm going to be frank: if this show was on one of the major networks, I wouldn't have gone anywhere near it. I really and truly cannot stand headliner Donal Logue. I have no legitimate reason for this and I admit it's quite foolish. But some part of me just gets a little perturbed every time he pops up in a movie or show I'm watching. Add to it the fact that the marketing campaign elicited a giant, "Huh?" from just about anyone who saw it and that makes for a potentially toxic cocktail. But I trust FX above any other network. "Sons" and "Justified" have both worked themselves into my top five list and of course, the incomparable cop drama "The Shield" has always been a favorite around here. So I'm willing to give it a chance.

"Terriers" leans more toward the "Justified" side of things than "Sons" with a propensity for humor over grit. Still, it uses humor as a starting point (again like "Justified") to move itself into the realm of drama. It's not a knockout for me and I'm not completely convinced that it's going to hold my interest for 13 episodes. But that said, it's intriguing and well written and that will keep me around more often than not.

(No, I do not know why it is called "Terriers." Maybe we'll find out at some point.)

Verdict: Week-to-Week

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