My wife voraciously consumes entire seasons of television on DVD. I'm usually ignorant of the details, but there have been a couple of shows that I've actually sat down and participated in if I happen upon her in her zone. One of these shows I took more than a passing interest in was NCIS. Those of you who are around my age no doubt remember Mark Harmon as the no-talent heartthrob women were swooning over back in the day. And while he may no longer be the 'Sexiest Man Alive' they finally found a roll for him in which he excels.
Mark Harmon plays an aging Naval Criminal Investigator who leads a young. bright team. Most of the stereotypes are here, not unlike any other television show on the planet (with the sole exception perhaps that the lab tech is over-the-top goth, and is permitted to dress as such OTJ) but I enjoy the chemistry nonetheless. It was a spin-off of JAG (a show I couldn't stand) with a focus of field investigation rather than courtroom drama. Not only did I not care for the cast of JAG, but I was still in the military when it aired and its inane glamorizations grated on me. To boot, every series I can think of eventually falls subject to itself if it runs long enough. That is, rather than airing episodes of what the series is about, it turns inward, creating a drama of the characters until it disintegrates. I'm sure this one is also headed that direction, but I'll watch it until it does.
This show has supplanted Criminal Minds (Much love for Mandy Patinkin!) as the single series I will allow myself in the limited time I spend watching a network television series. Season six premiers this fall, and I'm doing my best to catch up.
HOWEVER, at the end of Season 2, the cliffhanger episode, one of the main characters was shot and killed. I have not had a reaction like this to a television shooting since Adama caught two in the chest at the end of Battlestar Galactica's first season. I was beside myself. One of the things I do enjoy about serial stories is their ability to take their time in character definition, and I was really enjoying the maturity of the show - they'd found their groove. BUT THEY KILLED ONE OF THE MAIN CHARACTERS! IN THE SECOND SEASON! I rushed out and purchased Season 3 at a whopping $50 only to be gravely disappointed. The next two episodes were designed to deal with the death of the agent, but they did so in classic Scooby-Doo style storytelling with unrealistic emotions, wacky scenarios, and ultimately, forgettable writing. I found the entire thing disrespectful [to the memory of the agent] and disingenuous.
Worse still, they replaced the dead agent who was beautiful and funny and had a sexual tension with one of the other characters, with an agent who was beautiful and funny and has sexual tension with the same agent.
And even worse still...the writers fell subject to my personal bane of television-show equations: "six degrees of separation" in order to explain everything away. Reprehensible! You see, the agent was replaced by a girl who was the murderers half-sister, brought in by the lead agent's ex-lover who's now...their director!
Tidy. Completely unbelievable, but tidy. Yeah, I'm bitter.
And I sure do miss her.
Season three is shaping up quite nicely, though - they're back to doing what they do - that is, the reason I watch the show - and as soon as I finish up the box set I'm going to mail the first three seasons to galinda822. I think she'll enjoy them, and she'll finally be able to see what catttitude was referring to in the mannerisms and attitude of the character that reminded her of her.
Visiting my folks this weekend we had a great time - it'd been too long since I was last there. Dad took us out for Mexican at our favorite restaraunt in Decatur, I got plenty of visiting in with each of my parents individually, and the hotel had a widescreen LCD television in it, so we bought a cheap DVD player to hook up to it and spent our evenings watching NCIS while the kids stayed with them. Life is good.