Friday Flix: The Booth at the End

friday flix jae scribblesWoo hoo, Friday’s here! And of course that means another edition of Friday Flix. This week I’m going with another TV series. It’s what I’ve been up to lately, I can’t help it. After posting about Roswell, a few people recommended Xena to me, which I have been watching. But then my friend ninja-texted me to watch this new series The Booth at the End. If you’ve heard of it, it’s probably because you frequent Hulu. If you haven’t, well, it’s a Hulu original series.

The fact that Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon are making their own original series was always good news to me. But even better to see that one of them is really, really good. Hollywood and network TV, much like the big dogs of publishing, is losing its power to disruptive technology and I’m glad. That’s not to say I dislike Hollywood completely. They still put out good movies occasionally. And network TV is still very creative. But it sometimes seems a bit stale—as if they’re afraid to take chances on anything that won’t instantly make them $100 billion or more. It’s as though artistic expression has been banished.

Anyway, I thought more about this because all this week people have been talking about Scott Turrow’s frothing-at-the-mouth rant about the old publishing system dying. Is it a really bad thing if the power is dispersed? That means more authors can have their chance at success, and no one’s forcing the change, it’s just happening. Sounds more like America to me. (You can read more about Turrow’s rant on Amal’s and Kristen’s blogs.)

Okay, enough ranting about Big Media. Let’s get back to The Booth. Each season is 5 episodes long and each episode only lasts 23 minutes, but it’s amazing how much story they pack into those 23 minutes. What’s The Booth about? Here’s the description from Hulu:

A mysterious Man sits at a booth at the end of a diner. People approach him because they’ve heard The Man has a gift. He can solve their problems: A parent with a sick child, a woman who wants to be prettier, a nun who has lost her faith. The Man can give these people what they want. For a price. The Man makes a proposition. In exchange for realizing their desires, these individuals must complete a task, return to The Man, and describe every step in detail. The trick is that these tasks are things that would normally be inconceivable to them. But The Man never forces anyone to do anything. It’s always up to the individual to start – or stop. The Booth at the End asks the question: How far would you go to get what you want?

How far would you go to get what you wanted? I have to admit, the first two episodes of this series had me questioning whether I would continue much further. It seemed much too nefarious for my tastes. It’s the third episode that finally brought in the purpose for me—and then I was hooked.

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Friday Flix: Luther

friday flix jae scribblesOkay, I’ve been stretching it a little lately, because I’m not technically posting movies. But I think you’ll be all right with it. Ladies and gents, may I present to you the very short but very good TV series called Luther, starring Idris Elba.

I’ve heard talk about them possibly doing a black James Bond and if that’s true, Idris had better be top of the list. He’s a fabulous actor and had me hooked right in the beginning. I guess he was in a couple episodes of The Office (U.S.), Thor (as Heimdall), and more recently as Janek in Prometheus.

Anyway, back to the Luther. The description from Netflix:

In this innovative police drama, dedicated detective John Luther is trying to keep from losing a grip on his personal life as he contends with the psychological factors underyling the crimes he’s been assigned to solve.

Seems like the BBC is on fire lately when it comes to TV series (do I really need to mention Doctor Who and Sherlock?). Luther is no exception—and I really hope “series 3” makes it onto Netflix very soon.

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