Weekend TV Binge-Watching

I've only binge-watched one series so far this weekend -- Netflix' Frankie and Grace with Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda. They play two 70 year olds who are married to law partners. In the first episode, the law partners announce they are leaving their wives to marry each other, and reveal they've been secretly having an affair for 20 years. There are 13 episodes. It has many recognizable stars. Parts of it are very funny. Lily Tomlin has been nominated for a Golden Globes award for her performance and it's been renewed for a second season. Jane Fonda looks terrific.

The beach house where most of it was filmed is very nice (although not as nice as Diane Keaton's beach house in the Hamptons in "Something's Got to Give."

I'm not finding much else to watch despite all the offerings. What are you binge-watching on this weekend? Are you using Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, or your cable service?

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    One night last week I stayed up way too (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by ruffian on Sat Dec 26, 2015 at 09:32:57 PM EST
    late watching almost all 10 episodes of Netflix's documentary series Making a Murderer. It's not exactly entertainment so I do not recommend it to Jeralyn for holiday viewing - it would seem more like work for her. But it showcases the efforts of some excellent defense attornies...and one really horrible one. It is so well done... Gripping and interesting. I don't want to give spoilers but I am really interested in anyone's thoughts if they have seen it.

    For lighter entertainment I really liked Frankie and Grace. Also check out 'Catastrophe'. Can't recall if that is on Neflix or Amazon. It is a British comedy about a couple that have a mad fling when the man is on a business trip , and the woman gets pregnant. Does not sound funny, but it really is very well written and acted.

    Thanks Ruff, I'll check it out (none / 0) (#18)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 11:11:02 AM EST
    Sounds fascinating and frightening.

    I loved Frankie & Grace (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by jbindc on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 06:47:19 AM EST
    Although with Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston, I can't help but see Pres. Jed Bartlett and District Attorney Jack McCoy, and it's kinda weird.  ;)

    The Man in the High Castle? (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 09:42:49 AM EST
    I tend to watch a lot of PBS, ... (none / 0) (#1)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Dec 26, 2015 at 04:59:55 PM EST
    ... so I don't see a lot of the shows you're talking about. But "Frankie and Gracie" has gotten rave reviews, and the story of how it came about was pretty cute.

    Apparently a producer was under the misimpression that Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda -- who had hit it off so well 35 years ago when they made the big-screen comedy "9 to 5" and had remained friends ever since -- had expressed a desire to work together again. Both Tomlin and Fonda replied separately that no, he had heard wrong and they were both doing their own things -- but as long as he was working that angle, did he actually have something specific for them in mind? And out of those conversations came "Frankie and Gracie."

    And on the big screen, both Tomlin and Fonda have earned copious accolades this fall for their respective performances in "Grandma" and "Youth," and are both considered Oscar contenders for that work. So if you have the opportunity, Jeralyn, check those flicks out.


    I'm still binging LOST (none / 0) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 26, 2015 at 05:09:31 PM EST
    I just moments ago removed the last DVDof season 2 and the first DVD of season 3 from the mail box.  So there is that but I made the mistake if clicking on the HBO2 Game of Thrones marathon and I can't take it off.  It's weird, this would be the third time I've seen it from the beginning and it's still addictive.

    Curious (none / 0) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 04:11:36 PM EST
    If others here were/are LOST fans.  I don't want to know anything.  Please.  Just curious if others here are fans.  

    without saying too much (none / 0) (#15)
    by CST on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 10:22:41 AM EST
    I enjoyed the first season of lost, but couldn't finish the series.

    I know exactly what you mean (none / 0) (#16)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 10:36:39 AM EST
    That was exactly the response I was expecting.   Here is what I found sticking with it.  All the dumb things the characters do eventually make sense.   You sit there saying why the hell did character X not do Y when Z happened.
    But eventually you learn through flashback why.
    I am not historically a huge fan of flashbacks.  You know, you are going along with a story line you are really interested in and boom back to some back story flash back.   I hate it.   But they are so critical to this story that I have learned to love them.
    I am four episodes into the third season and I love this series.  I really really love this series.
    You might want to think about giving it another chance if you need a binge.  Just sayin.

    I have never watched it (none / 0) (#17)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 11:08:42 AM EST
    But spouse watched it last year when he was in Korea and couldn't talk about much else for some time. He used Netflix. Programs for soldiers and families overseas can be sparse on AFN. AFN does carry Homeland though, so I didn't miss anything when we were in Europe for Thanksgiving.

    Ha (none / 0) (#19)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 11:19:02 AM EST
    It can definitely have that effect.

    One sort of cool thing (none / 0) (#26)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 09:29:16 PM EST
    About binging the series is that the amount if time I've spent doing that tracks pretty closely with the amount if time that is supposed to have elapsed in the show.  Not exactly but close.  The last episode I saw they had been on the island 60 some days.  That's about how long I've been watching it.
    I can't say since I never saw it the other way but it seems like that's more immersive than having those episodes spread out over three years.  So far.  6 altogether.

    Check the open (none / 0) (#20)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 11:19:31 AM EST
    We were worried

    Sorry I didn't check in (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 01:46:56 PM EST
    My FIL is here. He is dealing with his second round of lymphoma and I have a feeling this will be his last Christmas traveling to us. He wanted to be with his great grands. He lives in Pennsylvania and has not had the opportunity to get to know them well. So I had the three grandchildren here for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and one day after. I tried to keep dinner simple, but was really tasked until yesterday.

    Being near Fort Rucker is helpful when tornado weather is afoot. Because they have four airfields they get weather warnings before anyone, and those working begin calling their family and friends. My husband's past commander was the reason why I got my daughter out of the old high school before it was destroyed. 8 kids died that day, 100s were scattered all over the area in different hospitals. We had so many injured they were airlifted all over thanks to Fort Rucker.

    I did take cover once in the new high school last month. We had a nasty cell go over around the same time school dismissed. The new high school is a fortress,  built to keep people safe even in an F4 and they have space for anyone who makes it there. You don't end up in the same shelter as the kids, but they have shelter for many others too.

    I see that Anne got a baby for Christmas, congratulations to her family.


    I try not to binge (none / 0) (#3)
    by McBain on Sat Dec 26, 2015 at 08:34:17 PM EST
    One episode per night is a general rule I sometimes break.

    Lately I've enjoyed Appropriate Adult with Dominic West and Emily Watson.  Some other good BBC dramas are Top of the Lake, Happy Valley and The Fall.

    I couldn't get into The Man In The High Castle but I've  having better luck with Narcos.  Fargo Season 2 was mostly enjoyable but I agree with those who didn't like the UFO angle and the ridiculous amount of commercial breaks.

    Santa brought me blu ray versions of Baraka, Samsara and The Visitors.  Those are related to the cult classic Koyaanisqatsi. When I get tired of soap opera dramas, it's nice to watch something artsy.  

    Thoughts on the UFO (none / 0) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 11:39:51 AM EST
    It was not a throw away in Coen mythology.

    Okay, Fargo fans: Let's talk about aliens.

    This bizarre non-sequitur is as unexpected and memorable as anything in Fargo's run (as well as the first thing every single person who watched the Fargo premiere has asked me about). And episode two, "Before the Law," doubles down on the UFO iconography without offering any kind of direct explanation, ending on an odd, spacey voiceover track from Jeff Wayne's 1978 musical adaptation of H.G. Wells' The War of the Worlds. All the while, the camera pulls up, implying some kind of unseen force watching from the stars.

    So what's the deal? On the most basic level, the UFO stuff is yet another Coen Brothers reference in a show stuffed with Coen Brothers references. Floyd Gerhardt (Jean Smart) describes someone as a "Chinaman" -- which, as The Big Lebowski's Walter Sobchak could tell you, is not the preferred nomenclature. Later in the episode, Ed Blomquist (Jesse Plemons) disposes of a corpse in the butcher shop's meat grinder -- a knowing variation on the original Fargo's infamous wood chipper.

    Fargo's UFO motif originates in one of the Coens' smaller, lesser-seen films: the 2001 neo-noir The Man Who Wasn't There, which happens to star Fargo season 1 alum Billy Bob Thornton. There, as here, the UFO lingers on the periphery of the story: first as a strange anecdote told by a grieving widow, and later as an actual UFO, witnessed by Thornton's death-row inmate in what's apparently -- though not definitively -- a dream sequence.

    Now, consider what's happened in the first two episodes of Fargo in the context of that full excerpt from War of the Worlds, as quoted at the end of "Before the Law":

    No one would have believed, in the last years of the 19th century, that human affairs were being watched from the timeless worlds of space. ............... and slowly, and surely, they drew their plans against us...

    The Fargo universe hinges on the same kind of cosmic morality that makes up the backbone of The Man Who Wasn't There



    I get the references/homages now, but (none / 0) (#8)
    by McBain on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 11:48:09 AM EST
    it wasn't needed. There was a lot of good stuff going on without flying saucers. Sometimes, if not always, less is more.  

    I thought the cast and acting was excellent, especially the subtle performances of Ted Danson and Jesse Plemons.  


    That it was not "needed" (none / 0) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 11:59:34 AM EST
    Would actually be the point.

    On The Man Who Wasn't There, I suspect they are correct.  It one of their lesser seen films.  Too bad.   It's one of my favorites.   Billy Bob, Scarlet Johansen, Francis MsDorman, James Gandolfini, Tony Shaloob, Richard Jenkins, John Polito.

    Beautiful B/W cinematography.  Great story.  Including UFOs.


    Coen Bros are hit and miss with me (none / 0) (#10)
    by McBain on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 01:48:05 PM EST
    I was never a big fan of the movie Fargo, The Big Lebowski and most of their earlier work.  I loved No Country For Old Men and the  underrated Burn After Reading.  

    I loved (none / 0) (#11)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 02:05:15 PM EST
    Frankie and Grace too and can't wait for the 2nd season. Netflix really has some awesome original programming.

    Did not have time to watch much TV though as this past weekend was Christmas number three for our family.

    BB Silk (none / 0) (#13)
    by Molly Bloom on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 05:02:23 PM EST
    The 1st season- 6 episodes - are available on Hulu. Its about a female barrister and her rival trying to be appointed QC (I hope I have the terminology correct). I found it mostly enjoyable, but I did want to object to counsel making speeches a few times. Unfortunately seasons 2 and 3 are not yet available.

    Should be BBC - Silk (none / 0) (#14)
    by Molly Bloom on Sun Dec 27, 2015 at 05:02:54 PM EST
    I liked Silk too (none / 0) (#21)
    by Jeralyn on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 01:34:32 PM EST
    and probably would have watched seasons 2 and 3 although I no longer get Hulu.

    I liked that it showed the mechanics of the English criminal justice system. I had flashbacks to Silk during some episodes of Season 2 of Broadchurch.

    Broadchuch Season 1, for those who haven't seen it, is bingworthy. Season 2 I thought was not.


    Another SILK fan here (none / 0) (#23)
    by RCBadger on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 03:25:38 PM EST
    BTW, if you liked SILK, you might want to check out "The Village" which stars Maxine Peake.  It's a BBC series which ran for two seasons about life in an English village from right before the start of WWI to the midtwenties as seen through the eyes of one of its denizens who is the oldest man in the UK.It was supposed to run for longer and go up to the present day, but the actor playing the old man died so it's in kind of a limbo.  I think it used to be available on either ACORN or HULU, but I'm not sure if it is anymore.

    Another good show is "Slings and Arrows" which is a Canadian dramedy from the mid 2000's which ran for 3 seasons.  It's about a small Canadian town and their annual summer theatre festival.

    Thanks for the Slings and Arrows shout-out (none / 0) (#24)
    by ruffian on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 07:41:52 PM EST
    One of my favorite shows ever....wonderful!

    You're welcome (none / 0) (#27)
    by RCBadger on Tue Dec 29, 2015 at 12:39:46 AM EST
    I rented the second season and enjoyed it so much, I ended up buying all 3 seasons.

    Me too...and bought a couple more sets as gifts. (none / 0) (#28)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 29, 2015 at 04:10:21 AM EST
    Love everything about it, including learning a lot about Shakespeare.

    Not to mention my favorite theme song. Buck Up Hamlet....cheer up you melancholy Dane...


    Just started (none / 0) (#25)
    by TrevorBolder on Mon Dec 28, 2015 at 08:09:41 PM EST
    Marvels Jessica Jones,

    A Netflix series.

    A Hell's Kitchen bourboun slugging private eye, in the mold of Sam Spade, but named Jessica Jones.

    Add in a little Marvel Universe magic, great music.

    Already up to episode 5.

    Have to restart Homeland, have seen Season 1 and 2,
    And Game of Thrones, starting Season 4.
    GOT, read all the books, and saw recently that George Martin has given up trying to stay ahead of the show. They have parted ways on some story lines already, I have been waiting for the next book for years.

    I've never really (none / 0) (#30)
    by sj on Tue Dec 29, 2015 at 09:54:10 PM EST
    binge watched before, but I did just that with Jessica Jones. That was really gripping. There were only a couple of times where I was saying "No! No! No!" to a character, and in thirteen episodes, that's saying something.

    Also binge watched Sens8. What can I say? I had some vacation time. I have some days left so now I'm looking for something else. Maybe Sherlock.


    Lol (none / 0) (#31)
    by TrevorBolder on Wed Dec 30, 2015 at 05:49:28 AM EST
    I have been trying to stretch these out, perhaps watching one or two episodes per week, but already   am up to Episode 6 with Jessica Jones in one week. Guess I might finish Season 1 over the weekend.

    I Googled best tv shows and found Sherlock also, I take it you are referring to  the Cumberbatch series? I think I will go for that one, as I consider myself a Baker Street irregular.


    Yes, (none / 0) (#33)
    by sj on Thu Dec 31, 2015 at 10:56:02 PM EST
    the Cumberbatch series. I've only watched the first episode. So far, it's everything it's cracked up to be.

    Tonight (none / 0) (#34)
    by TrevorBolder on Fri Jan 01, 2016 at 05:54:48 AM EST
    I will watch my first, they are doing a special , Back to the Victorian era, so it is a good one to start with.
    I didn't know the series was set in modern times,
    Looking forward to starting this series

    Finished Jessica Jones (none / 0) (#35)
    by TrevorBolder on Sat Jan 02, 2016 at 10:56:39 PM EST
    I had some Oh no moments, throwing stuff at the TV, lol,

    Will probably go back for season 2, and boy, is that girl a mess.


    When the lawyer... (none / 0) (#37)
    by sj on Mon Jan 04, 2016 at 03:03:51 PM EST
    ...got sweet talked, right?

    Lol (none / 0) (#38)
    by TrevorBolder on Mon Jan 04, 2016 at 04:43:26 PM EST
    Saw that one coming, lol

    After a while, Just sayin, Jessica , kill that so and so, the body count on your conscience is quickly building up


    Just watched the 'Call The Midwife' (none / 0) (#29)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 29, 2015 at 06:31:25 PM EST
    Christmas episode steaming on PBS. Now I feel like I really had Christmas. A lot more heartwarming than anything I could get my brother and his family to watch!

    I saw that Christmas episode. (none / 0) (#32)
    by caseyOR on Wed Dec 30, 2015 at 09:16:09 AM EST
    It really was quite heartwarming. Sweet and sentimental without being sloppy about it.

    Jeeves and Wooster (none / 0) (#36)
    by RCBadger on Sun Jan 03, 2016 at 07:02:37 PM EST
    If you like P.G. Wodehouse, you might enjoy "Jeeves and Wooster" starring Stephen Fry as Jeeves and Hugh Laurie as Bertie Wooster.