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How is it that in a world where David Simon can give us The Wire - and in doing so fundamentally alter my perception about how the world works, without EVER making me feel like I'm being preached to - the world's biggest broadcaster can give us such a ham fisted, drama school production? OK, so, let's be honest, with a few exceptions (cracker remains one of the best dramas ever made) British drama is dire at the best of times. But this? It turns out that oil is bad, don'tcha know? Oh and the oil companies (and in fact all corporate entities) are only interested in profits. And global warming is ... this'll shock ya ... a bad thing ...
When Michael Moore makes a documentary he wears his heart on his sleeve, he admits, even embraces his bias. Al Gore made a little movie that had a point to make and made it by ... well ... telling it like he saw it.
The folks behind this 'drama' decided that they should create (in the broadest possible sense of the term) a work of fiction because, obviously, that would convince us where documentaries had failed.
Except I don't believe the drama, the dialogue is part exposition, part school text book, part ... well, mostly actually, poor. The characters are cardboard cuts outs with all the light and shade of a thing that has no light and shade at all, and the story? Let's just say it makes the da Vinci code look WELL written. (Can you believe it?) Bottom line, the first job of drama is to engage my emotion and my intellect with the story and the ... here's a shocker ... drama. Engage me and I might let ya preach a bit, I might not even notice until it's too late if you do it well and I'm invested in the story enough by the time your agenda becomes clear. But If all you're gonna do is preach to me, without character, humour or a real feel for real people then I'm just gonna get angry ...
So angry, I'm gonna write a polemic of my own even while the awful first part of your 'drama' plays in the background.
Now. Go watch The Wire, watch West Wing, watch Rescue Me ... Watch (and I know this is gonna be hard to believe but TRUST ME) Battlestar Galactica ... ALL of those shows have an agenda, all of them have an opinion, all of them want to challenge the way I look at the world.
None of them managed to actually make me want to go out and burn a barrel of oil just out of spite and in protest against your appalling, unwatchable 'drama'.
Post Script: Just forcing myself to watch Ep2 of the UK 2 Ep version. Like the Italian designer said when walking around a truly awful 1970's UK car ... "Unbelievable, it' the same THIS side."
Not sure I excepted anything more, but I hoped ...
Sadly, part two is just as awful as part one, only more so because it's another 90 minutes I'll never get back.
There's an old industry saw about 'messages' and Wells Fargo. I don't subscribe. At its best drama can contain insight and inspiration and can create the lever by which the world is moved.
Drama can do that. This drama did not.
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