No Offense (Acorn TV 2018)

NO Offense

3 Kernels

No Offense is a British television police show set in Manchester, UK (love Manchester).  Season One is currently streaming on Acorn TV.  If you love British crime drama, a variety of police types from DI, DC, DS, DCI, PC’s (you’ll just have to look all those acronyms up), you’ll enjoy this one.

DI Vivienne (aka Viv) played by Joanna Scanlan is the team leader. Her personality is a bit prickly, crass, and a go-getter against fighting crime, however, when the prime suspect is close to home, it’s time to burn the evidence and hopes her two close girls on the force are on her side.

The first season revolves around a serial killer who drowns girls with Down Syndrome. It’s the main focus of the show, but each episode carries small off-shoots of other cases. The department is well rounded out with great characters from those in plain clothes to those in uniform, which occasionally get their own screen time about their personal lives. The ending of Season One is a bit of a twister.

What always amazes me is this DI, DC, DS, etc., never carry guns.  It’s only the uniformed police, unlike the USA where everyone is packing something, including the citizens.  Of course, our knife stabbings aren’t as prolific as they are in the UK.

Well, anyway, I’m probably going to find season two because I don’t feel like waiting for Acorn to get around in a year from now loading the next batch. I find that I lose traction waiting for additional seasons to arrive on Acorn, BritBox, Netflix, etc.  How can you really binge a long one with only six to ten episodes?  It ain’t possible.

 

 

 

Lost in Space (Netflix 2018)

Lost-In-Space-Aggretsuko-Others-Coming-to-Netflix-in-April-2

2-1/2 Kernels

Danger, Will Robinson!  Danger!

Well, if you grew up in the 1960’s, like I did, Lost in Space was the show to watch and many reruns for years afterward.  Though it only lasted three seasons, Netflix has had the brilliant idea of bringing back the premise of the show.  It doesn’t quite look the same in the scheme of the old one, except for a robot that is way more scarier and somewhat cooler.

I sat through all ten episodes for the sole purpose of avoiding my tax return and paying my bills.  (I promise to file tomorrow.)  Instead, I sat watching the show in two days finding it mildly entertaining but was left scratching my head a few times and hitting the fast-forward button in the last three episodes because I wanted to get over it.

All I can say is be prepared for a plot with more holes in it than a slice of Swiss cheese. There are more danger scenes packed into ten episodes with the more impossible scenarios of “getting out of this jam” than you can imagine.  From nailbiting scenes to the ridiculous, you’ll watch the Robinson family escape danger, solve every problem you can possibly image, and save the day while being hounded by one crazy woman who is Dr. Smith.

What works in this series?  Special effects are acceptable.  Robot friend of Will is fine until he starts killing everything, but redeems himself when pre-historical alien creatures are about to eat everyone.  The brave attempts of survivors (more than the Robinson family), to leave a planet they have crashed upon fill up most of the story. Perhaps they could have just made it on this piece of rock, except that apparently, this plant is dying too.  Oh, and don’t think you get the whole story of why the Robinsons and the special people had to leave earth.  I’m still confused on that one too.  Apparently, it was all a ruse.

What doesn’t work, is the plot and unanswered questions.  You’re forced to sit through flashbacks to their former life on earth, and then are hurled back in space with the family.  We have a husband (Toby Stephens plays John Robinson) and wife (Molly Paker who plays Maureen Robinson) who were about to get divorced and are now together escaping planet earth.  We have Will (Maxwell Jenkins, fairly cute kid) who has two sisters (Taylor Russell and Mina Sundwall).

The mother is so intelligent about absolutely everything it’s to the point of being ridiculous.  Definitely, the overreaching dominate female who semi-emasculates her husband emotionally. Their eighteen-year-old daughter who looks like fourteen is a doctor.  Will and his other sister are smart enough to run around the ship and fix just about anything.  On top of it, Will saves the day when it comes to finding fuel.

I can’t really go bonkers over this remake.  Everyone has a near-death experience at least three times in each episode.  A few of the characters are annoying, and Dr. Smith (Parker Posey) and her evil psychopathic or sociopathic or something psychotic personality grates on your nerves.  There is no clear reason why she acts to insanely intent on conniving to ruin every situation or every person around her for self-preservation.  Frankly, I think she just gets her kicks out of being a bitch. She’s like a monkey wrench thrown into each scene to muck things up.

Okay, enough ranting.  Give it a spin if you like space movies.  Just remember by the end of it, you may be just as lost as the Robinsons in space.

 

Kris Marshall Says Goodbye to Death in Paradise  

I’ve adored Kris Marshall ever since I saw him on My Family in 2000 to 2005. It was a show that kept me in stitches, as well as his character Nick Harper.  I might as well throw this thought out, but why doesn’t Britbox, Acorn TV, or Netflix pick up this series.  Okay, enough pondering…

 

I just saw the last episode of Death in Paradise on the newly released sixth season on Netflix.  Naturally, I moaned when I discovered Kris Marshall’s character, DI Humphrey Goodman, would be finding his paradise elsewhere.  Here is why the wonderful and talent Kris decided to leave. Frankly, I cannot blame him, because family does come first.  His replacement so far appears to be a good choice.

Hopefully, Kris will pick up another great show.  I don’t see anything worth mentioning on IMDb but his talent should not be put on a shelf.

The winds of change are blowing through Saint Marie. Here, Kris Marshall talks through his journey with the show

Source: Kris Marshall says goodbye to Death in Paradise – and explains why he had to leave

Case Histories (BBC 2011 and 2013)

3 Kernels

Streaming on Amazon Prime Video is Case Histories, an engaging British crime television drama about a private detective named Jackson Brodie. These episodes are based on the novels of Kate Atkinson.  Jackson is played by the talented Jason Isaacs. Before becoming a PI, he was a soldier and policeman. Jason is plagued by his own memories of a family tragedy. He’s also divorced and is dealing with custody issues when his ex-wife wants to move to New Zealand.

Set in Edinburgh, you’ll get a mix of British accents and very heavy Scottish brogues. To round out the cast is Amanda Abbington who plays D.C. Louise Munroe. (You’ll remember her more recently as playing Mary Watson in Sherlock and Miss Mardle in Mr. Selfridge). There are romantic feelings between the two, which aren’t really expressed until the end of Series One, which is the only one streaming at the moment.  Also, be prepared for graphic sexual encounters – loud rutting but not much flesh. There is also one upsetting scene with a father having incest with his daughter.  I do agree with some viewers that could have been cut out and handled differently.

Otherwise, this is a good series because Jackson’s clients are an eclectic mix of interesting cases that often intersect in one fashion or the other.  He solves mysteries that have gone unsolved by the police and takes on new cases with surprise endings.  Even though he’s a former policeman, he sort of skirts around the law when it suits his purpose. Frankly, I enjoyed the series but Season Two is not available except for purchase on DVD.  I’ll wait hoping eventually it will go to Prime.

 

 

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