Random thoughts on HBO

Entourage The second season of HBO’s Entourage has been can’t-miss. The show has really evolved and come into its own as one of the best programs on TV right now. It’s following a trend of shows that appear to be one thing on the surface- in this case, a dumb buddy show- but are actually something much more interesting underneath.

As much as I can’t stand HBO’s outrageously over-hyped self-promotion and some of its biggest name shows (Six Feet Under, Deadwood, and The Sopranos both rub me the wrong way; The Comeback is just awful); I am really looking forward to this fall on HBO. On Sunday nights, they’re putting Rome (looks great) up, followed by the 5th season of Curb Your Enthusiasn (let’s hope it picks up after last year’s slump), and then a rerun of Ricky Gervais’ (of the BBC series The Office) latest show, Extras.

Just remembered another HBO show I miss: Unscripted. The show got slammed by critics, but I loved the pacing, the distance the cameras kept from the characters, and the great blend of reality/drama. Not to mention the best use of natural light ever.

Speaking well (and not so well) of TV Guide

Excellent article in Slate today by Bryan Curtis (why does that name sound so familar?) about the rise and fall of TV Guide, one of my favorite magazines from my geeky entertainment-obsessed pre-driving period (age 11-16ish?).

Side note: I’ll have to check the Archive on this later, but I have a feeling that Slate’s basic design- the middle column for the article, in 13pt Verdana- hasn’t changed since I began reading it back in 1999. That can be comforting sometimes, don’t you think?

Recommendation

I’ve only watched 3 episodes so far, but they’ve all been really, really great: it’s Scrubs Season 1 on DVD, and I highly recommend it.