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Author Topic: Luther  (Read 670 times)

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Lottel

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Luther
« on: February 04, 2012, 10:15:05 PM »

So I caught a few episodes of Luther on Netflix. It's a BBC Crime Drama. I was expecting a sort of Law and Order.
But it's nothing of the sort. When they say it's about Luther and his psychological problems I kind of assumed he maybe had a troubled marriage or anger problems. And he does. But there's a lot more to the show than that.
It's hard to go on too much without giving it away, seeing as all Netflix has are the first 6 episodes so I'll just give my reactions to the first six episodes as such
1: "That was pretty good. I can see where they're going with this."
2: "Oh wow. I didn't expect that. This'll be neat."
4. "Oh wow. OOOooooh wooooow."
6: I'm on my knees yelling why don't we have TV like this over here.
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Ted Belmont

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Re: Re: Random TV Thoughts
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2012, 03:43:07 PM »

So I caught a few episodes of Luther on Netflix. It's a BBC Crime Drama. I was expecting a sort of Law and Order.
But it's nothing of the sort. When they say it's about Luther and his psychological problems I kind of assumed he maybe had a troubled marriage or anger problems. And he does. But there's a lot more to the show than that.
It's hard to go on too much without giving it away, seeing as all Netflix has are the first 6 episodes so I'll just give my reactions to the first six episodes as such
1: "That was pretty good. I can see where they're going with this."
2: "Oh wow. I didn't expect that. This'll be neat."
4. "Oh wow. OOOooooh wooooow."
6: I'm on my knees yelling why don't we have TV like this over here.

srsly

Also, the music is pretty great.
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Lottel

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Re: Re: Random TV Thoughts
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2012, 03:52:33 PM »

Yes, I'm well aware exactly how terribly written that was.
I apologise.
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Thad

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Re: Re: Random TV Thoughts
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2012, 10:03:48 PM »

So I caught a few episodes of Luther on Netflix. It's a BBC Crime Drama. I was expecting a sort of Law and Order.
But it's nothing of the sort. When they say it's about Luther and his psychological problems I kind of assumed he maybe had a troubled marriage or anger problems. And he does. But there's a lot more to the show than that.
It's hard to go on too much without giving it away, seeing as all Netflix has are the first 6 episodes so I'll just give my reactions to the first six episodes as such
1: "That was pretty good. I can see where they're going with this."
2: "Oh wow. I didn't expect that. This'll be neat."
4. "Oh wow. OOOooooh wooooow."
6: I'm on my knees yelling why don't we have TV like this over here.

Watched the first couple.  I am enjoying it.  The only other show I can think of, in recent memory, that plays the cat-and-mouse game as well is Sherlock.  The writing is sharp, the acting really sells it, and the characters are brilliantly realized even as they're clearly flawed.

I also like to pretend it's a prequel to Torchwood.  You know, Suzie joined Torchwood to look for the Doctor after her relationship with him ended.  (I'm still trying to figure out how to work Sean Pertwee into it.  He belongs in there somewhere.)

Neil Cross actually has an episode of Doctor Who coming up later this season.  Which makes sense; if his casting decisions are any indication, he's a fan.
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Thad

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Re: Re: Random TV Thoughts
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2012, 10:21:32 PM »

6: I'm on my knees yelling why don't we have TV like this over here.

Brother, you ain't lyin'.  I just watched it and it makes American TV look stupid.
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Thad

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Re: Luther
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2013, 05:42:11 PM »

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Sharkey

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Re: Luther
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2013, 02:27:20 PM »

Textbook questions for the first season:

1) Gee, that man sure is angry. And black. Angry for very good, very relatable reasons. Is the black selling it, or is Idris Elba just that fucking good? Why?

2) Wouldn't Elba make a great 12th (or 13th, whatever) Doctor? Sure, he hasn't ever shown much in the way of childlike glee, but don't you want to believe he could? (Extra credit: Is that just because you liked him opposite Paul McGann, or was Eccleston your favorite doctor?)

3) How utterly and completely in love with Alice are you? Pale-eyed narcissistic sociopath geniuses are bad for you, shithead. How many times have you gone for that now? Whatever, you're going to put "infinitely in love" anyway. (Any other answer is an automatic failure on this quiz, which is clearly just checking to see if you happen to be me.)

4) Holy shit, I love everything on this soundtrack. No, that is not a question. We abandoned that conceit a long time ago.

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Thad

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Re: Luther
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2013, 03:50:19 PM »

I think I DID actually let out an "Ooh!" when I saw her in the trailer.

(Also bad for me: women named Ruth.)
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Sharkey

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Re: Luther
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2013, 06:31:14 PM »

Additional thought: Coincidence is often held out as bad storytelling, at least where coincidence isn't part of the theme. Coincidence in the form of russian roulette, dice, and other mechanisms show up multiple times, where they would have just ended the story had they come out any other way. That's flaunting something.

So, why is coincidence, confidence, and luck a recurring theme?
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Thad

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Re: Luther
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2013, 02:43:48 AM »

I think it's part of the theme that Luther walks the razor's edge and what separates him from catastrophe at any given moment is a mixture of pure chance (/Story God intervention) and his own stubbornness.  Sometimes catastrophe happens anyway, but he's always just lucky enough to survive it and stop the bad guy.

And the frequent, random (/Story God dictated) reversal of fortunes is another big part of it.  Luther always wins -- but not for most traditional definitions of "wins".  He manages to survive, bring the villains to justice (for sometimes-broad definitions of "justice"), and maintain his moral code, such as it is.  He's always just one step ahead of a messy death, and often a step behind his enemies -- the end of season 1 shows his blinders pretty effectively, and season 2 features an extended arc where he's coerced by organized crime.  In both cases he eventually comes out on top, but not until after a few bodies pile up.

It's also important to note that, for a show about a guy who's lonely and isolated, he doesn't face his greatest threats alone.  He needs his weird little group of friends, to help him both from physical dangers and to keep whatever tenuous grip he's got.
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Thad

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Re: Luther
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2013, 04:05:50 PM »

Welp, that was perfectly decent if not up to the "holy shit" standard set by previous episodes.

It's not as dramatic an overhaul of the status quo as the season 2 premier was.  [spoiler]I'm a little disappointed Luther's back to being a Lone Wolf with no Cub, but it's not altogether surprising either.[/spoiler]  The new arc's got potential.

And they ARE right back to playing up the theme of chance.  At first I liked that characters were actually repeating, in dialogue, my point about whether Luther is the luckiest or unluckiest man alive; on further thought I don't think I like it quite as much.  You really shouldn't have characters discussing your themes that literally and concretely.

And the ending really plays the chance/bad luck element a step too far, for my money.

But even still, a middling episode of Luther nonetheless makes damn good television.  Definitely looking forward to next week's.
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Thad

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Re: Luther
« Reply #11 on: July 09, 2013, 01:13:31 PM »

Well!  That was almost disappointing but then wasn't!

Act 2 played the tropes pretty hard; I actually started rolling my eyes when [spoiler]the women did the ol' "let's go investigate the strange noises in the creepy dark upstairs" bit -- but then the payoff.  Worth knocking me out of the moment for a minute to subvert the cliche at the end.[/spoiler]

And then Act 3 was just fucking awesome.

The cat-and-mouse continues to be the highlight of the show.

Recurring Theme for This Week:

Eddie Vedder & Zeke - Daytime Dilemma (Dangers Of Love)

(Which reminds me: the song during the credits sounded like one of Trey Parker's parodies of overwrought Serious Songs.)
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Thad

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Re: Luther
« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2013, 02:22:38 PM »

Well, three complaints:

[spoiler]1. The plot relies on Luther being too stupid to delete a text message with Mary's location on it.
2. The plot relies on the hoary old "I'll give you the tape" cliche, despite the villain being fully-established as computer-savvy and someone who should understand the concept that files can be copied.
3. The resolution to the Internal Affairs plot is far too convenient and facile.[/spoiler]

Aside from that, I enjoyed the hell out of it.  Predictable, but that was kind of the point; this show is about coincidences, repetition, and the lingering questions of what would have happened if things had gone just a little bit differently.

So really, it's inevitable (even though I'm spoilertagging it) that season 3 ended with [spoiler]a dead partner, the woman Luther loves being used as a pawn against him, a rooftop showdown involving a vote to decide who lives and dies, Luther's desperate desire to see the villain live to pay for his crimes, and the antagonist investigating Luther starting to believe that maybe he's not so bad after all.  (I'm glad Erin lived, curious as to whether their relationship will be positive in the future, but kinda hoping it remains cold if slightly less adversarial.  I expect she'll continue to be involved somehow, though, because Jesus Christ they've sure burned through a good big chunk of the principal cast at this point.)[/spoiler]  Course, it bears adding that Luther is less morally ambiguous than ever, played things pretty close to by-the-book this season, and seems to have finally gotten that whole anger management thing under control.

Curious what curves the show has left to throw at us if there's another season; hoping they don't amount to ramping up the shock and misery because this season got pretty grim even considering what's come before.
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