Tag Archives: HBO

Netlix Is My New HBO

30 Mar

I can’t even …

Most people who say that don’t understand the depth and awesomeness that create a phrase like that, they just say it. There’s no substance behind it.

But with me.

Dude.

Plenty of depth.

And I can’t even tell you about the most amazing discovery that I’ve uncovered. It just happened, while you were sleeping.

Netflix became my new HBO.

Now before you start hollering at me let me be clear. I’m a huge HBO fan.

HUGE.

They put The Wire, the best drama on Earth on the air (although Sons of Anarchy comes a really close second). They allowed me to meet Tony and Carmela Soprano, forget about it. And then they decided to introduce me to Deadwood, Entourage, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Sex In The City, Bored To Death, Band of Brothers, The Pacific, Veep, Newsroom, Game of Thrones, and True Detective.

These are all DVR worthy, watch live-and-in-person-don’t-answer-the-phone worthy shows and mini-series. I’ve been a fan for a while. But I’ve got to say, Netflix is rising fast, with intense and dramatic shows that make you turn off your phone. And here’s the amazing part … I don’t have to wait until next week to watch the next episode.

I know.

The Holy-Crap-I-can’t-believe-that-just-happened-what-the-hell-is-going-to-happen-next feeling gets eased just by pressing play. They reeled me in with House of Cards and the amazing Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright. Underwood for President! Then they decided to bring back Jason Bateman and the entire Arrested Development crew. I can’t tell you how amazing it was to see the banana stand back in business.

But they didn’t stop there.

They introduced Orange is the New Black and Derek, two dramadies that captured my attention for sure and made me fall in love with and care for inmates at a prison and the quirky staff and residents of a nursing home.

Then Agent Scully came back to TV as another pretty intelligent detective on the hunt for a serial killer who happens to be the 50 Shades of Grey guy, before he took up the whips and stuff.

But the show that put me over the edge … the one that inspired this post, the one that had me binge watching until two in the morning, the one I sacrificed sleep for because I couldn’t wait to see what happened, and the one that pushed me into letting you know that Netflix is moving on up … to the East Side … to a deluxe apartment in the skyyyyyyyy … yeah they’re moving on up … they finally got a piece of the pie.

The show?

The one?

Bloodline.

With Coach Eric Taylor himself.

Yup.

Kyle Chandler has come back from Friday Night Lights to star in this amazingly awesome thriller-drama as detective John Rayburn and that has me saying I can’t even

I know, right?

And you know sometimes you get worried that one of your favorites is going to come back and it’s not going to be as great as their original show. And you worry.

Yeah, this is not one of those situations.

This is a binge-worthy situation.

I don’t want to put out any spoilers or ruin the surprises, the build up, the character reveals, or the Holy-Crap moments. I want to give you a chance to experience the great writing on your own. So I thought I’d just give you a head’s up.

Netflix is finally getting a piece of the pie and I want you to get your piece.

Watch out now … It’s my new HBO.

Remembering Tony

19 Jun

Dude, I didn’t even know him and I’m sad about it.

Truth was when I heard it the first person I thought about was my dad. He would have been seriously bummed out to hear the news. He was a big Sopranos fan. Most people had family dinners on Sundays, we had Sopranos, coffee, and tea. We never missed an episode. Always hanging out on the couch, tripping out on Tony Soprano and his crazy mobster life. Our elaborate discussions of Silvio, Christopher, Tony, Janice, and Carmela after each episode only made hanging out on Sundays even better.

The Sopranos

The Sopranos

I guess James Gandolfini’s passing was like losing another part of my dad, another connection gone. But at least I have some awesome one-liners with plenty of profanity to remember our HBO nights, but let’s not forget the weird series finale that left us with a wait … what-happened-here moment.

I know he did more than just the Sopranos, but this awesome show is what brought us together every Sunday night. Complex, loving, murdering criminals. Here’s the best of Tony…

“A wrong decision is better than indecision.”

“If you can quote the rules, then you can obey them.”

“What fucking kind of human being am I, if my own mother wants me dead?”

“All due respect, you got no fuckin’ idea what it’s like to be Number One. Every decision you make affects every facet of every other fuckin’ thing. It’s too much to deal with almost. And in the end you’re completely alone with it all.”

“He tells me he’s got no purpose.”
“And how did  you answer him?”
“I told him that it costs 150 grand to bring him up so  far, so if he’s got no purpose I want a fucking refund.”

“Is this a woman thing? You ask me how I’m feeling. I tell you how I’m feeling, and now you’re going to torture me with it.”

“This isn’t painful. Getting shot is painful. Getting stabbed in the ribs is painful. This … isn’t painful. It’s empty. Dead.”

“You’re only religious when it suits you.”

Easy Company, HBO, and Dad

11 Nov

On this day most Americans remember veterans and other military personnel who served our country. Most people pause and give thought to the sacrifices given by these brave people. However today I found myself thinking about my dad.

He wasn’t in the military at all, but he really enjoyed the Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg mini-series  and movies that chronicled the World Wars. He especially appreciated the realistic story telling and drama of The Band of Brothers and The Pacific. Every year since HBO aired these mini-series one of the cable stations usually hosts a Veteran’s Day marathon and it’s a day-long watching event. I wasn’t able to watch the endless hours of intense drama today, but I caught a couple of episodes, and all I could think about was my dad.

Image via HBO

Now even though he’d seen the series air on HBO when it premiered, he probably would have recorded the episodes and then watched them after dinner. He’d brew up a pot of coffee, pour himself a cup, throw some pillows around and try to do his best to fix up the couch in preparation for his marathon. He so wished he had a Lazy-Boy.

My dad would call me to let me know of his plans and see if I wanted to stop by, and most of the time I would. We’d hang out … him with his coffee, me with my tea or chocolate, and hours of HBO drama. Not too many conversations during the show, just hanging out, watching the based-on-true-story accounts of soldiers. Just someone to watch television with and share a comfort zone of silence. The talking didn’t really begin until after the episodes finished, sort of a book club discussion, but without the books. Just HBO television with my friend.

So today as everyone remembered loved ones in the military or armed forces heroes from the past, I found myself rearranging the couch pillows, wishing I had a Lazy-Boy, and lying down watching Easy Company do its best to physically and emotionally survive the war. I thought about my dad and wished he was sharing the comfortable silence with me.

The HBO Club and My Dad

16 May

It was no surprise that as I flipped through the channels I would think of him.

It was no father-and-daughter tearful family moment on a television drama. Nor was it was a family reunion of the long-lost daughter meeting her Dad for the first time on a made-for-TV movie on Lifetime. It was detectives Lester Freamon and Jimmy McNulty trying to figure out the code Baltimore’s notorious drug dealers used on The Wire.

The police; from left, Roland "Prez"...

The police; from left, Roland “Prez” Pryzbylewski, Cedric Daniels, Jimmy McNulty, Rhonda Pearlman, seated: Lester Freamon, and Kima Greggs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This show featured violence, drugs, corruption, and the media. It’s a cop show, but not like the others. It was HBO. Apparently it won the Peabody Award … that David Simon is badass. HBO … My Dad loved that channel. He must’ve seen every original drama that channel produced … and we were there watching every minute of it.

Well … my Dad started The Wire at season 1, I didn’t come along until season 5. He kept talking about this one show and how he couldn’t miss it. He’d be glued to the TV. Then I saw one episode and was hooked. We had HBO power-talk sessions after each show, analyzing characters, examining plots, and throwing out predictions for next week. It was like a book club, but without books. It was the HBO Club. We had snacks. My dad was the organizer, leader, host, remote-control holder, and caterer. I was the moderator.

A week before the series finale I was able to get us into a lecture and Q&A session with creator David Simon. It was hosted at my alma mater. My dad was so excited to have been there. It was a bunch of college students, alumni and my dad. It was awesome. My dad was able to meet the dude that created this series and I was so happy I could do that for him.

So as I was flipping through the channels and saw a re-run of the show, it brought memories of our HBO Club and our little field trip to my old college campus. I missed my dad and our conversations. I wished he hadn’t passed away. So in an effort to be somewhat closer to him, I had a HBO Club Pow-wow myself. I rented the first season of The Wire on Netflix. It was a marathon. I saw six episodes in one sitting. It was a late night, but I enjoyed every minute of it. I thought of all the things my Dad would say as I watched part of the first season.

It was good to have the HBO Club resurface. But now I was the organizer, leader, host, remote-control holder, caterer, moderator and lone member.

Club is still in session and my Dad is watching from above.