Monday, 3 March 2008

Beer, whiskey, cigarettes

What we learned from this weekends tv.
Madmen:
I tuned in because if I’m honest the ads have been on all the time. It’s by a writer from Sopranos and involves the daily lives of a group of early 60’s New York ad men. My initial problem with the whole thing ( as with studio 60) was who cares it’s about adverts, who cares if they don’t get made or if the admen struggle to come with campaigns it's only crappy adverts.

Also the people in advertsing don't have a really good press and most of the characters in first episode didn’t dispel any of this loathing.
In fact it came over like a spoof, the male execs where leery and cocky, the female (mainly admin) staff where only there to wed some guy from the top floor. It may broaden out but I’m not hopeful. There was also comedy levels of smoking and drinking which may be true to life but looked a bad Fry and Laurie sketch.

In order to bring us into the plot Elizabeth Moss (Jed Bartlet's daughter from the West Wing) is the new girl in town so we get a tour of the office. Her plot line seemed rushed, into the space of one day she managed to get put on the pill and go shopping (all in her lunch time) ending the day shagging the slimiest bloke in the office who just turned up drunk at her flat .

The lead character may have depths but apart from shagging behind his wifes back seemed to show his emotion by rubbing the bridge of his nose.

Around the world in 80 gardens:
Was in the far east this week, Monty Don pointed out something I’ve only just recently become aware of. For years I also thought Chinese landscape art was highly stylised all steep gorges weird pointy mountains, pines clingling to crags. But it turns out that’s what bits of China look like, so in fact the drawings are actually super realistic. Monty showed this by going to yellow mountains which looks like something off a porceline plate and are the forms the Chninese style their gardens around.

He also bravely atttempted to explain Japanese zen gardens and made some in roads at least getting past the changing rooms glib approach normaly seen on tv ie some gravel the odd stone and a black painted screen. It would have been good to see some modern Chinese and Japanese gardens.

The best sales team in all of Utoxeter



1 comment:

Planet Mondo said...

Unfortunately I didn't see any of those programmes, but did catch Monty Don's South American run - I can't stand gardening but was hooked for the whole show.

I thought the same thing about Chinese art until I saw a great Docu' (years ago)about a Chinese river man and his pet geese living near the most bizzare mountain formations - Roger Dean the Prog Rock cover artist was brought up in China and Scotland which is why has all those lumpy bumpy landscapes in his work.