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Darren O. Campbell
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and i can tell you most American viewers wouldn't last past five minutes into this show.
the cast is below average in looks, some are deformed, they talk funny; the characters are a mixture of the depressed, depraved, the thick and the stupid. the acting can only be described as a work in progress, and they lead dead end lives in dead end places. there ain't no glamor here.
all this will repel viewers whose identity is cast by fashion and t.v. programming. this show could never find a spot anytime on a us network. episode four would send middle America into a terminal tale spin--but it's not their fault. we don't get this kind of material because the money men who run us television only care about the cash--the baby faced producers would say, "who wants to watch a show about ugly losers?".
and if you want to hold up PBS as a daring non-commercial network, then drink some more koolaid. their emphasis is Lawrence welk for the primary, grey haired donors, and pimping a brainwashing liberal agenda through their political programming. they might find the balls to show a program like this around the 23rd century.
but i love it.
the original film, and this following series, seems to take a cast of mostly inexperienced actors, who may have lived the parts, and coaches them through a working class reality which at its core is full of camaraderie, loyalty, forgiveness and love. not the prettified sitcom love, but a love grown through lifelong community and shared pain, a love of real sacrifice.
these people are flawed like the rest of us, but they are not us. at first we reject their world as alien, but we see, through time, they share all our fears and traumas. we too are all common.
and thank god someone is making something about real people.
the great shame is: only a few Americans will ever see this show. we need to raise the bar, and flush out the cobwebbed hierarchy at PBS. i just hope we don't have to wait until the 23rd century for our programming to catch up. i don't think i can wait that long.
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