So, this week, the High Plains Library gods decided to issue me a challenge--two television series to watch in a week. I had been on the list for Mad Men, Season 3 for about four months. I had requested the library purchase Slings and Arrows about a year ago. Suddenly, they were both mine, and I only had seven days to watch them. (Actually, until tomorrow.) It has been a fantastic TV week here in the summer doldrums for me, and I thought I'd write a bit about both series, as my wee lad is sleeping in.
Mad Men is the best known of these two, and my friend Hannah introduced me to the series last year when I was first home nursing. Season 1 was okay, season 2 was better, and I cared enough to want to see what happened next. Season 3 was amazing--every episode was interesting, things moved along with every character, and the finale was superb. In my opinion, it was the best season finale I have ever seen--closure for each seasonal storyline, and I'm dying to see what happens next. Unfortunately, Season 4 doesn't start until next month on AMC, and I probably won't get to see it for at least another year. It is feeling a bit Harry Potter-ish here. Now, I know Mad Men isn't everyone's cup of tea--especially if loose morals concern you--but the focus on the advertising business in the 1960s is fascinating, and the acting superb. Season 3's episodes concerning childbirth in the 1960s (a horror film for an "enlightened" modern mom like me) and the assassination of JFK were stunning, and threw you back fifty years.
Slings and Arrows, on the other hand, you might never have heard of, and if so, seek it out. A Canadian TV show/miniseries from 2003-2006, it stars Paul Gross (Canadian Mountie Benton Fraser from Due South) as a somewhat insane artistic director for a Canadian Shakespeare Festival. I know! You're excited now, no? In each season, the focus is on a specific play, working through Hamlet, Macbeth, and King Lear. Amazing Shakespearean knowledge (I know my views on Ophelia were totally changed), great humor and pathos, and the best opening credit music ever! Ask your library, Netflix it, and if you have my name for Christmas this year, buy it for me.
Anyway, for those of you concerned, I have fixed meals, played with my darling boy, done laundry, and swept floors this week as well. I just imagine when I turn these in on Monday, I might go into good television withdrawal.