Entertainment Inquiry #2: Answers to What TV's Worth Watching on Netflix

Since there is only so much time in the day to read 750+ word reviews and there are many things that have been seen and not yet written about, it seemed right to boil down all of the sentiments expressed on Eclectic Pop into a simple question and answer format; getting to the point in a concise and clear manner that transforms those broader analyses into various bite-size reads.

This special Netflix edition of the Entertainment Inquiry addresses the TV content that is currently available on the streaming giant…

Question: What's a strong sci-fi series that is currently available to stream?
If there has ever been a series that was taken too soon it was, The CW’s “Tomorrow People” starring Luke Mitchell ("Agents of Shield") and Robbie Amell ("The Flash"). Throughout its first and only season, it steadily improved with every episode and was one of the true standouts amongst the class of 2013.

It centers on a group of evolved millennials who possess super powers (think X-Men) and the conflicts that arise when they join forces to fight an omnipresent organization. This is a show you can easily watch as an extended mini-series (it lasts 22 episodes). Its storylines are neatly wrapped-up whilst giving the audience a few things to ponder when it ends.

[Image by Netflix]
Question: What is the deal with “Fuller House”? Is it on par with the original?
The short answer (as crushing as it is to write) is no. The reunion episode earns all of the emotion you would hope to experience watching it and seeing everyone together again, sharing their trademark repartee is definitely tear-inducing in its sentimentality.

As is when Uncle Jesse sings his cover of The Beach Boys' “Forever" and the rest of the cast joins in. Those are the nostalgic moments fans have been longing for since the show ended 20 years ago. After that stellar reintroduction, “Fuller House” feels empty.

A lot has changed at 1882 Girard Street since 1995 and not for the better. Uncle Jesse (John Stamos) and the rest of the original gang are guests, who make sporadic appearances that only make you wish they would stick around permanently. Their successors: DJ (Candace Cameron Burre), Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin) and Kimmy (Andrea Barber) make for an entertaining trio.

Their chemistry is just not equivalent to the magic dynamic Danny (Bob Saget), Jesse (Stamos) and Joey (Dave Coulier) shared/share. Another distressing change is the addition of juvenile crudity, thinly veiled sexual double entendres, alcohol use and four youngsters living in the house instead of three.

By adding all of these elements, "Fuller House" has subtracted from what made the original so endearing and unlike "Full House"; you cannot comfortably watch 2.0 with the entire family. [Image by Netflix]

Question: What show needs binge watching before it returns?
The Netflix original “Bloodline” - give it three episodes to reel you in and by number four you will be beyond grateful you put yourself on the hook. Its second season arrives on Netflix Instant, May 28.

Question: What show can/should be binge watched that has not ended and has more than one season under its belt?
Marvel’s superhero drama “Daredevil”. After a decent first season, “Daredevil” pulled off the rare “sophomore bump”, exceeding its freshman season by a hefty margin. The dialogue is more gripping, the action more intense and fan-favorite Stick (Scott Glenn) has an expanded role.

The second season also boasts one of the all-time best portrayals of a comic book character you will see anywhere and that applies to movies and TV. Jon Bernthal’s Punisher is nothing short of outstanding and others clearly agree. Netflix has officially announced a solo series for the breakout character.

Question: Is “Damages” worth binge watching?

This is a tough one to answer. The first season has its moments but the realization that Glenn Close’s maniacal Patty Hewes will never face the music for her behavior becomes too loud to ignore and the war she wages against Ted Danson’s Arthur Frobisher is downright annoying. Her inexhaustible pursuit of him without any discernible personal motive makes for one of the most exasperating rivalries in TV history.

On a positive note, it is easy to see why Rose Byrne’s career took off afterwards. While she provides the series with a charming central heroine; it was personally not enough to justify pursuing the series long-term. The good news is that you can watch the first 13 episodes as a mini-series and decide whether to continue watching from there; without having to deal with any pesky cliffhangers.

Question: What are the top 5 shows currently available to stream?
Here’s Eclectic Pop’s list

Question: Historical dramas – what are the best ones?
Showtime’s sumptuous papal drama “The Borgias” weaves the scandalous (and fictionalized) tale of the Borgia family’s rise to power and the intricate family bonds that keep them busy. Be warned it ends on a climactic note as Neil Jordan’s posh series was abruptly cancelled following its third season. Netflix also carries the BBC’s rival series “Borgia”. Personally speaking, Showtime did it better. Another historical drama worthy of your time is “World Without End”, the mini-series sequel to Ken Follett’s “Pillars of the Earth”.

Question: Which mini-series should be avoided?
A&E’s “Coma” and BBC’s Ian Fleming bio-drama “Fleming” will leave you spent and not in a good way. While History Channel’s historically inaccurate “Houdini” will simply leave you perplexed. To read Eclectic Pop’s full review of “Houdini” click here
[Image by Starz]
Question: When does “Narcos” return and what is a good alternative to watch until then?
Netflix has yet to announce an official premiere date for the second season of “Narcos”, though it is expected to bow in late summer, early fall. Until then Mitch Glazer’s sexy Starz series “Magic City” starring Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Danny Huston, is a sleek substitute to bide your time with until the addictive “Narcos” kicks off its next season. 

Set during the last days of the 1950’s, “Magic City” centers on the saga of Ike Evans (Morgan), the owner of Miami’s glitziest hotel and the ensuing ramifications of a desperate deal he strikes with mobster Ben “The Butcher” Diamond (Huston) to keep it. Huston is a scene stealer as the nefarious Diamond, giving viewers a decadent villain who keeps you on the edge of your seat.

Come for the glossy visage, stay for the juicy storytelling and a remarkable star-is-born performance by “Legend of the Seeker” actress Jessica Marais. Like “Narcos”; “Magic City” is based off true events and while the show was cancelled after its second season, the story is not over yet. A feature film is in the works. [Image by Starz]

Do you have an “entertainment inquiry” you would like to see answered in a future post? Leave it in the comment section below or Tweet to @EclecticPop using the hashtag #AskEclecticPop

[Featured Image by Netflix/FX/Starz]

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