Trending
MOST READ
New Sensation: SA’s Austin Mahone and teen pop superstardom

New Sensation: SA’s Austin Mahone and teen pop superstardom

Music: Like the bulk of Austin Mahone’s Instagram account, this one’s a selfie. In a white tank top, hair coifed up real big, Mahone arranges his facial... By Matt Stieb 7/22/2014
Beaches Be Trippin\': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Beaches Be Trippin': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Arts & Culture: Let’s face it, most of us Lone Stars view the Texas coast as a poor man’s Waikiki. Hell, maybe just a poor man’s Panama Beach — only to be used... By Callie Enlow 7/10/2013
Best Brunch

Best Brunch

Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
Best Thai Food

Best Thai Food

Best of SA 2012: Tucked off Blanco Road in a bland shopping strip lies a tasty secret that has been keeping SA foodies smiling for over a decade. Once you pass through the rough exterior, you'll... 4/25/2012
Best Food Truck

Best Food Truck

Best of SA 2012: We love food trucks. But, honestly, there are days when the restaurant-on-wheels trend feels completely out of hand. Frequently operators wheeling out new mobile eateries... 4/25/2012
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

Cine File

New life for TV reruns

Photo: , License: N/A


This week we look at two short-lived television comedies that met with critical success and popular indifference. Thanks to Netflix instant viewing, both shows can now be viewed in their entirety, and who knows, maybe there’s still a chance they can find the popular success that eluded them, after all.

For two seasons and 20 episodes, Party Down ran on the Starz network. The characters worked catering in L.A. and they all shared the dreams and frustrations of trying to “make it” in the biz, be it as an actor, musician, writer, or comedienne. The show is interesting for several reasons. Each episode is actually episodic and doesn’t try to drag out plot points from each week to the next in lame soap opera style that often defines television. The tone is irreverent and biting, but never bitter. Party Down is basically a tragedy as all the characters face down failure week after week, but it’s all presented with unlikely joy. The characters are precisely drawn; they bicker constantly while at work (which is the only time we see them), but they are always there for each other. Unlike film, characters never change in television, which is one reason I often find following TV dramas week after week a waste of time. But with Party Down, the emotional stasis works because the characters’ lives, the very essence of the show, are all about the emotional cost of putting a life on hold to chase one’s dream.

Saxondale is a BBC comedy starring Steve Coogan as an ex music roadie with anger issues. He likes to drive around in a muscle car with a “Let’s Roll!” bumper sticker, but he’s nowhere near as badass as he wants to be. He works as a pest controller and is rarely able to satisfy his sex-starved girlfriend who sells anarchist T-shirts. Like many British comedies, such as the original The Office, the humor is much drier than American comedy. This may require an adjustment, and some people might not immediately get it; you have to pay attention, but the rewards are there. There’s talk of transplanting this series to the U.S., probably with more pronounced mullets and a trailer park location. It might even work.

 

Cinefile is a random reference guide to help explore the vast catalog of films available on Netflix instant viewing, with special emphasis on the interesting, the unusual, and the ones that got left behind.

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus