Showing posts from September, 2023

This blog has moved!

Future posts will appear  here or  here   The archive of posts will remain here, unless something happens to it.

The Organization: Rodney Spurling and Peter Frame (Seventies TV Season)

Future posts on this blog will not appear on blogspot. They will be at or   I am delighted to kick off my season of posts about 1970s TV shows with this show, which was the winner of the Writers' Guild of Great Britain Award for Best Television Drama Series in 1973, an award which was well deserved in my opinion. Perhaps I should stress that it is not to be confused with the film of the same name starring Sidney Poitier, which may be better known in the US. Actually it may also be better known here, because I can't think why all the rubbish 1970s TV series are so dominant when there is quality like this lying about. On the surface The Organization is a programme about the machinations and politicking in a large organisation called Greatrick. That is the introduction you will read all over t'internet and it may even say that on the DVD release, which is probably one of the reasons I'd heard of this show but never fan

Seventies TV Season: Introduction

Well, that abortive move from Blogger didn't last very long did it? I don't know what happened but Overblog won't be getting the benefit of the millions of page hits that would result from hosting this blog, and instead I'm going to be absconding to Tumblr (address below). I'm still playing with it and will post here to announce my final switch. This post is the introduction to a projected series of posts on 1970s TV series. I am going to try to write one post per series on a number of series which I really think are rather good, in a similar way to what I previously did about 1980s TV. When I did that I found that the shows I featured were mainly ones that I didn't feel I could do justice to in some way, but nonetheless could do an introductory post to the series and focus on one episode. There are a number of problems with blogging about 1970s TV shows which I didn't find so much with 1980s shows. The first is that whenever I have written about it in the p

I'm not moving yet

 Hold that thought and keep checking here because over-blog have deleted my blog without telling me so I'm not moving yet. 🤔 I remember a teacher telling me in years to come every office would have a computer and it would make everything much easier...

Coming Next: This Blog is Moving!

This post is a brief summary of what is coming next on this blog. First and perhaps most important, is that I have decided to move the blog from Blogger to another blogging platform (the mirror on Substack will be staying where it is). The reason is increasing frustration with Blogger: it's slow in comparison to Substack and has an increasing tendency to put my innocuous posts behind adult content warning for no reason apparent to me, and with no possibility of appeal. I have finally fixed on a long-established blogging platform called Overblog to move to: it's easy to use and doesn't even have an app. But the main reason I chose Overblog, and you may want to call me superficial, is that my heart was stolen by the idea of being greeted by the words 'quel plaisir de vous revoir!'. Why did I stay with Blogger ranting at me for so long??? So from here on the blogspot version of this blog will not be added to and future posts will be  here You c

The American Dream in The X-Files: I think these Conclusions will be Final

The introduction to this series of posts on the depiction and criticism of the American dream in The X-Files can be found here: So I've reached the end of Season 4 and I think I can truthfully say I'm now burned out at this series of posts and shouldn't pick it up for another whole season. Of course I may comment if an episode I watch in the future particularly makes me think of the subject. I have three over-riding conclusions from doing this series of posts. The first is that as an outsider the picture of the American dream which is in my head is probably formed by The X-Files. That's why the show makes me think of the subject, and obviously blogging is cheaping than therapy. I have realised that actual Americans tend to see the subject differently and accentuate different things. The second is that the show tends to foreground something (for example part of the series mythology or a monste

The American Dream in The X-Files: Tempus Fugit, Max, Synchrony, Small Potatoes, Zero Sum, Elegy, Demons, Gethsemane

The introduction to this series of posts on the depiction and criticism of the American dream in The X-Files can be found at: 4x17 Tempus Fugit and 4x18 Max (Core Mythology) I'm a bit surprised on rewatching this two-parter to find that I didn't find it replete with possible references to the dream, which was what I was expecting. Instead the criticism of the dream which is hammered home at length is, of course, that there is a huge conspiracy and the justice and freedom from fear you might expect are possible illusory. 4x19 Synchrony (Monster of the Week) No apparent reference to the American dream. 4x20 Small Potatoes (Monster of the Week) No apparent reference to the American dream. 4x21 Zero Sum (Core Mythology) I'm not a great believer in the 'few bad apples' argument whether applied to law enforcement or churches, because the few bad apples are usually just what you know about and t

The American Dream in The X-Files: Paper Hearts, El Mundo Gira, Leonard Betts, Never Again, Memento Mori, Kaddish, Unrequited

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The Avengers: Box of Tricks

It's a strange world of mirrors, the cult TV blogosphere. We all plant ideas in each other's heads and bounce ideas off each other. This blog post was inspired by two coincidences, for example. The first was that Mitchell Hadley commented how much he likes early Steed. Well, so do I. I love that early Steed is a much more mutable character than the later bowler-hatted agent employed by the ministry: we never really know who he is, he comes across as louche and could even be a criminal. Particularly he treats Venus Smith like dirt and she hates it but he carries on. In fact I think this is one of the reasons the Venus Smith episodes are unpopular. Then I came across something else which reminded me of this episode (more anon). I see that I last opined about this episode nearly a decade ago (you can see the post in a series I did about Venus Smith by clicking the relevant tag in the menu). It's a pretty good blog post, even if I do say so myself, and reflects when I was young

The American Dream in The X-Files: Musings of a Cigarette-Smoking Man, Tunguska and Terma

The introduction to this series of posts about the depiction and criticism of the American dream in The X-Files can be found here: 4x07 Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man (Monster of the Week) This is another complex, highly-layered episode, which apart from its brave attempt to place Cancer Man at every major historic event of post-war US history, is rather difficult to understand. According to the episode's wikipedia page the main problem its complexity causes in understanding is that viewers tend to miss that the events depicted in this episode are the fictional story written by Cancer Man. Even within the narrative of the show, what we see in the episode is not intended to be seen as real. I'm sure you will understand that it has provided me with this handy getout clause so that I don't have to go through the entire history and can just wave my hand suggestively at the entire plot. The questi

The American Dream in The X-Files: The Field Where I Died and Sanguinarium

The introduction to this series of posts on the depiction and criticism of the American dream in The X-Files can be found here: 4x05 The Field Where I Died (Monster of the Week) The Field Where I Died is reminding me of why I like to blog about things which interest me or I think I know about, because there is just so much in this one that I'm almost certain to make several howlers. In fact, watching the episode with more attention, it's apparent why it's usually had rather lukewarm reviews, because frankly it's a bit of a mess. It's also got plot holes you could drive a Cadillac Series 62 through, because obviously nobody in their right mind would have questioned Melissa in the mental state she was in and Scully clearly has a professional duty to go to Skinner and tell him Mulder has finally lost it. As always there is a foreground to the episode: the dissociative personality vs past liv

The BBC/Big Finish Remake of The Prisoner

I have been listening to the BBC/Big Finish audio version of The Prisoner, that series which is so idiosyncratic, completely dependent on the personality of its creator and of its time that it can't possibly be remade. Witness the 2009 AMC remake. Why on earth would mere mortals think that they can just remake such a legendary series? I have started watching this remake once and soon turned it off, and while it is referenced in The Prisonersphere, it isn't popular and everyone's gone back to arguing over the original. Which is why it gives me such pleasure to say that I have been enjoying watching the BBC/Big Finish version very much. In fact you'd better sit down because I'm about to alienate any remaining readers of this blog after offending everyone by being provocative about the American dream and utter the ultimate heresy in the world of The Prisoner, namely... The BBC/Big Finish remake is the best version of this show and in my opinion is actually better than

The American Dream in The X-Files: Home, Teliko, Unruhe

The introduction to this series of posts about the American dream as depicted and criticised in The X-Files can be found here: I am delighted that we are now hitting a couple of episodes where their relationship to the American dream will pretty much write itself with no help from me: apart from anything else this is a bit of a relief because at times I've been wondering whether I was imagining that the show featured the dream. 4x02 Home (Monster of the Week) Luckily I'm not the only one who says this episode references the American dream: it is even gets on to the episode's Wikipedia page! I was going to say that you could say this episode is criticising the dream; that in a society where if you work hard everyone can get as far as their God-given ability will take them, there are bound to be casualties. Some of those casualties are bound to be found among people (who obviously exist internation