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Now I live alone in the Deep Piney Woods of Deep East Texas with two dogs and two cats, a private library, a boat, a shotgun, a rifle, two handguns, and a computer.
I came to JAG in the middle of season four, and was immediately hooked. I found the characters just a shade idealized, but still eminently believable. Needless to say, I was smitten with Mac MacKenzie. She was the most realistically human of all the characters in the series, having strengths and weaknesses, heroism and frailty. The chemistry between Mac and Harm resonated with me. After following the show for half a season, I had to begin collecting the DVDs as they became available, pre-ordering the next season every year. Then I discovered that Mac was the heiress and successor to two equally vibrant female officers, both having been Harm's partners, Meg Austin and Caitlin Pike. And both equally delicious. Which brings me to a question. If anyone reads this, I'd like to know if anyone else noticed: about the middle of season 1, Harm is suddenly portrayed as a Lieutenant Commander; but in the next episode he's a Lieutenant, and remains so for several episodes. Then he is promoted to Lieutenant Commander with all due ceremony and congratulations, and the promotion is reinforced by congratulations in a following episode. Were these episodes produced, or aired, out of sequence? It bothered me only minimally, but I'd be interested to know if anyone else noticed.
Weeds: I Am the Table (2008)
The Cheese Girl
The cheese girl is Lisa Something-or-other (she never aid her last name), played by Julie Bowen. Julie Bowen is THE reigning Goddess of Beauty on this planet. Helen of Troy would be a distant second-best.
I would go on about Miss Bowen, but it would just run into rant, and I would drool on my keyboard.
You can see Julie in reruns of "Boston Legal," seasons 2 through 5, and "Lost," season 2. I think she was Jack Shepherd's wife, who was killed in a car wreck. She was in "ER" briefly, in 1998 and 1999, in an episode of "Dawson's Creek," and apparently was a regular in a series called "Ed," which I've never heard of..
The Powers That Be (1992)
Funniest Show Ever
"The Powers That Be", like almost all of the best shows on TV, was cancelled after a VERY brief run, two seasons. It was thoroughly delightful, and the funniest show I have ever seen on TV, in movies, on stage, or anywhere else.
This show introduced me to David Hyde Pierce.
This is the spoiler: He created a character whose inhibited wimpishness previewed Niles Crane, and was possibly even funnier than Niles.
Senator Powers' fumbling idiocy, his wife's management of her husband and everything else in sight, his mistress' unabashed frankness, his weasly assistant (who suffered, as I recall, from Tourette's Syndrome, are only a few of the sterling items that made this show such a treat. The Senator's bastard daughter was at least as funny as his other daughter, with her anorexic diffidence.
Go -- go now -- run, don't walk -- to http://www.tvshowsondvd.com, and vote for The Powers That Be. Vote early and often.
Honey West (1965)
Anne Francis -- the sexiest woman ever born
The good die young, the loveliest things are the most ephemeral, and the best TV shows are killed after a short run: Star Trek, Due South, The Powers that Be, and Honey West -- the briefest of the lot. I had already fallen for Anne Francis, from Forbidden Planet and The Satan Bug. But Honey West topped them and any other offering on TV or in movies. Honey was ultimately cool, ultimately hot, self-assured, poised, capable; she was superlative. But above all, she was smolderingly sexy. She made me think of a steel spring encased in ice-blue velvet. I think the ocelot only accentuated the sexual appeal of the woman, which needed no accentuation. She was the ultimate, and pheromones fairly poured out through the screen. Whether as Honey West or any other of her characters, Anne Francis was the sexiest woman who ever lived on this planet.
Mrs. Columbo (1979)
Best Columbo ever
Mrs. Columbo as a title got my attention right away. I had seen several Lt. Columbos, including the actor who first created the character, Bert Freed --IMO the best of the lot; I thought Falk stank as the detective. It was my first look at a female detective, and my first exposure to Kate Mulgrew. I instantly fell in love with her. Her character was appealing in a number of ways: she was self-assured, competent, calm and cool. She could -- and did -- handle anything that jumped up to bite her. Kate is still my pick of all female detectives, and Mulgrew is a goddess. As an actress she can do no wrong. As to the series itself, I found the plots much more realistic, in a true-to-life way, than those of her "husband" or of almost any other crime show that was then on the air. So here are two "best Columbos," Mulgrew and Freed.
Days of Glory (1944)
I saw this film when it was first released, many decades ago; so my memories are faded. But I do remember that the performances of Peck and Toumanova were electrifying.
The quality of the production was, I thought, excellent. As I was a teen-ager, the intimate scenes between Peck and Toumanova had less to say to me than they might have done. Yet now, sixty-odd years later, I still remember them as emotionally meaningful.
I remember thinking that wearing dark clothes while trying to manoeuvre in the snow was stupid, and not true-to-life. But the overall impression was of heroic resistance against overwhelming odds.
It was inspiring and uplifting. I glowed for days.
Jobeth Williams stole the show (with a nude scene, I admit). She outshone everyone, except maybe Royal Dano. If it isn't the best film about the perils and pitfalls of teaching, it runs a close second. I found the balance between comedy and serious drama delicately handled.
The death of Ditto (Royal Dano) -- in class, for Gods' sakes -- is a case in point. It was macabre enough to satisfy anyone, and it touched just the right edge of balance between dark humour and seriousness. Unfortunately, as most teachers have done, I have know not a few colleagues whose daily performance was not far removed from his.
Just by the way, when I taught in junior high school, I came to know Jobeth, as many of my students in speech/drama competed against her. I knew then (mid-1960s) that she was destined for stardom.
Way to go, Jobeth! Huzza!
The Patriot (2000)
Yea, Yeah, Yeah
Gibson was, as usual, stellar. Isaacs was a vicious, haughty, overbearing, slimy monster. But that's where I fell out of sync with the film. I couldn't accept the hyperbole of his evil, and it soured the rest of the story for me. Cornwallis was an officer and a gentleman. In real life, he would have had the Isaacs character [Tavington?] shot at dawn. I began to wonder if that character was a pastiche of Banastre Tarleton, who had a bad reputation on that score.
Too much unrelieved evil on the part of the British, and too much saintliness on the part of the Americans. The political correctness with the black men being freed and accepted as equals by the South Carolinians tore the tissue, and the rest went down the toilet.
Nonetheless, I enjoyed the movie. I just wish it hadn't been billed as American history. It wasn't. I found it inspiring and exciting, and -- bottom line: Braveheart 1776.