Please believe me when I say that the last time I watched an American TV series was... er... probably the 80s, then, because I am pretty sure it was "Knight Rider".
Before that, there had been things like "Charlie's Angels", "Wonder Woman", "Hart to Hart", "The Bionic Woman" and "The Fall Guy".
And all those were dubbed in French, imagine! Or rather, don't.
*UPDATE: My boyfriend has actually reminded me that I had told him I had watched a few episodes of the X-Files back in the 90s... So there, I lied... Or rather, I have selective memory.
Anyway, I had never watched another American TV series until yesterday. We decided to watch the 2009 remake of the series V (I had liked the 80s series, but I don't remember which one I had seen as there are so many different ones: V ). It had been satisfyingly creepy and disturbing.
So then, the 2009 series:
Maybe if you've carried on watching US programmes, you'd had time to get used to them... But to me, it was a massive shock to the system.
Shallow doesn't even start to describe it. Everything is sleek, clean, perfect. Every actor has had a bit (or several) of their face redone and have been so injected with, what, botox? that we get science-fiction within the science-fiction: the actors all look like aliens who can't "emote"...
The Visitors look more like corporate board members than anything else, with the suitably blank stare and little satisfied smile on their plastic lips.
Of course, we get the priest whose faith is put into doubt by the appearance of the aliens; why do Americans have to throw a bit of god into everything? TICK
Oh, and of course there is the lame "side" stories, entirely devoid of any psychological depth and intelligence: the "brave" botoxed, enhanced single FBI mother (TICK) whose teenage son already looks half-human in that kind of jock, beefed up, clean pro-abstinence TV ad blandness that passes for the type of desirable physique to attain for teens these days. Of course, he's got an overweight friend! And he is attracted to a wannabe porn-star wearing too much orange make-up... Not surprising, then, when he gets taken in by the Visitors propaganda. There's a big blank space to fill. TICK.
I can feel the forbidden romance between the harassed but hard-as-nails single mother (whose son will become her worst enemy, ALL THAT BECAUSE HIS DAD HAS LEFT HER SO SHE FEELS GUILTY, geddit?) and the will-he-resist-the-pleasures-of-the-flesh-Catholic-priest-but-oh-go-on-then he-had-already-started-doubting-his-faith-already-anyway-so-might-as-well coming on. TICK.
Somewhere else, we have the obligatory "nice" black character (TICK) with surreal white teeth - I had to blink so much whilst looking at him - who of course is really an alien, but hey, he's a NICE one - and he loves his girlfriend very much (TICK); the girlfriend oddly looks like the whole of the Jacksons siblings rolled into one - post operations. Very strange.
Gone is the Nazi allegory, in are the - absolutely NOT subtle - references to 9/11 and terrorism (the series is relocated to New York, just to make sure you GET IT, and they tell you during the opening titles too, just in case you DIDN'T GET IT!).
The first episode reveals everything, more or less all at the same time, in order to make sure they catch the attention of a generation of viewers whose attention span has been reduced to 5 seconds by over-usage of computers and social media.
Very odd stuff indeed... It left me feeling slightly sick, as if I had eaten a jam doughnut with an extra helping of icing sugar on top. Which I've actually never done.
Thankfully, to balance it out, tonight is the last episode of "The Hour", which is intelligent and enjoyable enough to wash the sticky feel of this disaster of a series off my skin.
I think therefore I write.
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