Dan Barrett

Dan Barrett is the Content Director of Televised Revolution. His musings on television have been heard across ABC Radio, on websites like The Guardian and Crikey, and drunkenly in pubs across the country. At night he spends too many hours watching repeats of Cheers.

Netflix By the Regions Report: Netherlands

Purpose Of The Report
When Netflix launch into new territories, they must sign content deals with the rights holders of content in that region. As such, different content appears in different Netflix regions. Furthermore, Netflix don’t just roll out US content into every territory, but rather mix it up with local content that suits the cultural temperament of the territory. The Netflix By The Regions Report is a mere snapshot of the sorts of content on offer in each region and how they differ to other Netflix offerings.

Territory Overview
Netflix launched in the Netherlands in September 2013. The monthly subscription cost is €7.99 (US$9.48) for access to two simultaneous streams or €11.99 (US$14.23) for four simultaneous streams. The Netherlands, which once stood as the primary physical entry point for film prints entering Europe, has kept up with technology, embracing online consumption in a big way. Broadband consumption has reached 80%, average households get 4Mbps–20Mbps with 100Mbps capabilities following new fibre being laid nationwide.

Core competitors in the region include HBO Nordic, Videoland, Film1, and KPN. Within months of Netflix’s launch in the Netherlands, competitor service Ximon shut their doors.

Content
Despite offering one of the smaller Netflix libraries, Netflix Netherlands has a strong selection of known films and TV shows in the library. The film titles, in particular, are a wealth of beloved titles. Where the Netherlands library suffers is with a relatively limited range of TV series.

Netflix---Netherlands

The Netflix Netherlands library offers 1394 titles (as of 07 January 2015).

Titles included in the Popular On Netflix section are:
Oblivion, Brooklyn Nine Nine (TV), Arrow (TV), Homeland (TV),Frozen, Under The Dome (TV), Pretty Little Liars (TV), Suits (TV), Appleseed: Alpha, Breaking Bad (TV), Grimm (TV), Revolution (TV), The Mentalist (TV), The Originals (TV), Identity Thief, Mama, Prison Break (TV), The Hungover Games, Tangled, How I Met Your Mother (TV), Modern Family (TV), The Divide, Snatch, Orange Is The New Black (TV), All Hail King Julien (TV), Lost (TV), Sons of Anarchy (TV), Deadwood (TV), Married With Children (TV), High Plains Drifter, The Returned (TV), River Monsters (TV), Once Upon A Time (TV), Dexter (TV), Mad Men (TV), Instinct, Fargo (TV), Sherlock (TV), Seven, The Americans (TV), The Odd Life of Timothy Green, New Girl (TV), The Killing – US (TV), Family Guy (TV), Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Orphan Black (TV), Zero Dark Thirty (TV), Falling Skies (TV), Broadchurch (TV), Man On A Ledge, The Prestige, Oz The Great & Powerful, Man on Fire, Mystic River, Lone Survivor, The Usual Suspects, White Collar (TV), Dragonfly, The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Day of The Jackal, Luther (TV), Django Unchained, Twin Peaks (TV), Elementary (TV), Scarface, Saving Mr Banks, LA Confidential, Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, The Unbelievers, Margin Call, Fringe (TV), Wreck It Ralph, World War II In Colour (TV), Moonrise Kingdom.

Overall
There are very few opportunities to really use Netflix Netherlands to its strength, which is TV marathons. While there are a handful of good drama series in the library, it’s nothing to be overly excited about. The film collection, however, really is very good.

[Review] Agent Carter – Marvel’s No. 1 Broad

Despite significant successes at the global box office, Marvel have maintained two major black dots against their name:

  • They’re ten films in without one starring a female lead.
  • Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

With Agent Carter, Marvel are addressing both of these in one go with a female-led action adventure series that provides more entertainment in its opening two episodes than MAoSHIELD offered in its entire 22 episode first season. Those still watching Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. insist that it’s gotten better than the dog of a show that debuted in 2013. And it has. But it’s still not something one would ever recommend that anyone watches. Agent Carter gets a very strong recommendation as slight, but vibrant entertainment.

For those unfamiliar with the character, all one really needs to know is that Agent Peggy Carter was Captain America’s US Army liaison/love interest during World War II until he sacrificed himself at the end of the first Captain America movie. As this show starts off, the war is over and the British Peggy is back in New York where she has difficulty being taken seriously as an agent with the men in the office treating her as nothing better than a tea lady. Despite her being the smartest, most qualified agent in the room.

AgentCarterPromoAgent Carter, set in post war New York, is a classy, jazz-filled period show that is everything one expects it to be. Both the staging of the series and the temperament of the series lead, the show both looks and feels like Australian series Miss Fishers Murder Mysteries.

Hayley Atwell really drives this show, playing Peggy as a tough as nails agent who is frustrated by the lack of empowerment she’s provided by her colleagues. She’s a funny, charming, and altogether gorgeous 1940’s broad. Girls will want to be her when they grow up and boys will want to marry her when they grow up. She’s just wonderful.

While the show is eminently watchable, two episodes in there are a few aspects of the series that are disappointing. The first episode, which establishes the season-long arc of needing to save the reputation of wealthy military industrialist Howard Stark, is just too heavy on character threads hanging from the first Captain America movie. Without the film, it’s difficult to understand exactly who Stark is. The flashbacks to the film are also frustrating as they’re simply not needed. The intent is clearly to tie the series closer to the big screen films, but the flashbacks just alienate the audience who never saw the film. It implies that the audience are missing crucial information that just isn’t needed for the show.

It’d also be nice to have more women in prominent roles on the show. While Peggy Carter is absolutely wonderful, the only other woman to be seen is a trod-upon waitress (Lyndsy Fonseca) who is seeking to befriend Carter (presumably…she could well be a spy).

While not amazing TV, Agent Carter is eminently watchable and will make for great family viewing with older kids.

Netflix By the Regions Report: Mexico

Purpose Of The Report
When Netflix launch into new territories, they must sign content deals with the rights holders of content in that region. As such, different content appears in different Netflix regions. Furthermore, Netflix don’t just roll out US content into every territory, but rather mix it up with local content that suits the cultural temperament of the territory. The Netflix By The Regions Report is a mere snapshot of the sorts of content on offer in each region and how they differ to other Netflix offerings.

Territory Overview
Netflix launched into Mexico in September 2011 at an initial cost of 99 pesos per month. A recent price rise and the introduction of tiered pricing means Netflix now costs 89 pesos ($US5.96) for the SD single screen subscription, 109 pesos ($US7.29) for HD and two simultaneous screens, and 149 pesos (US$9.97) for HD and four simultaneous screens. New streaming competitor Clarovideo costs a monthly subscription fee of 69 pesos (US$4.62).

Content
Netflix Mexico is a treasure trove of forgotten and one-season TV wonders. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing at all – the strength of streaming services is that ignored shows can find a new audience in a second life. Sam Neil in the series The Triangle, the Knight Rider re-make, a mini-series starring Jason Priestley about Canadians climbing My Everest called ‘Everest’, The Bionic Woman re-make, and a 2007 Spanish-language Zorro series are among the many treasures.

The Netflix Mexico library offers 2347 titles (as of 06 January 2015).

Netflix-Mexico

Titles included in the Popular On Netflix section are:
Modern Family (TV), El Senor de los Cielos (TV), Mr Peabody & Sherman, Toy Story of Terror, How I Met Your Mother (TV), Marco Polo (TV), Despicable Me, Friends (TV), The Croods, Toy Story 3, What If, Family Guy (TV), Instructions Not Included, Vikings (TV), The Good Lie, The Walking Dead (TV), Elementary (TV), The Wolf of Wall Street, Tangled, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air (TV), Real Steel, 21 Jump Street, House (TV), Once Upon A Time (TV), Ted, jurassic Park, Grey’s Anatomy (TV), Walk of Shame, Lone Survivor, Looper, Gifted Hands, Easy A, The Help, Dexter (TV), Boy Meets World (TV), Prison Break (TV), Revenge (TV), Cases Quien Pueda, Grown Ups, The Borgias (TV), The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Desperate Housewives (TV), Under The Dome (TV), 3 Metros Sobre El Cielo, The Office – US (TV), Orphan Black (TV),  Switched At Birth (TV), Safe Haven, Bill Burr: I’m Sorry You Feel That Way, Sugar Vs Fat, Secret Life of Babies, How To Train Your Dragon, Friends With Benefits, America’s Next Top Model (TV), All Hail King Julien (TV), Moonrise Kingdom, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (TV), La Reina Del Sur, Lie To Me (TV), Inglorious Basterds, Just Go With it, Skins, Ender’s Game, Transcendence, Amelie, Shooter, Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload, The Nut Job, The Vow, Gravity Falls, Blow, Pulp Fiction, God’s Not Dead.

An interesting curiosity in the library is this horror comedy film Stitches, starring Ross Noble as a clown who is killed in a party mishap and comes back from the dead seeking revenge on the people responsible.

StitchesOverall
I don’t profess to be an expert on TV series or movies from Latin America, so I cannot speak for the value of much of the offering available here. But, the ratio of English language series against locally produced films and TV series is considerably different with far fewer US titles in the library than in Netflix libraries elsewhere. There also seems to be far more genre films available. Netflix Mexico have all manner of interesting and unusual titles. It’s worth a closer look.

 

Netflix By The Regions Report: Luxembourg

Purpose Of The Report
When Netflix launch into new territories, they must sign content deals with the rights holders of content in that region. As such, different content appears in different Netflix regions. Furthermore, Netflix don’t just roll out US content into every territory, but rather mix it up with local content that suits the cultural temperament of the territory. The Netflix By The Regions Report is a mere snapshot of the sorts of content on offer in each region and how they differ to other Netflix offerings.

Territory Overview
Launching in Luxembourg in September 2014, Netflix costs subscribers  €7.99 (US $9.55) per month. Netflix’s European headquarters, servicing their U.K., Ireland, Scandinavia and Netherlands operations, is based out of Luxembourg thanks to their generous tax laws.

Content
While there is a small amount of content in the Luxembourg store, it has also only been running since September, meaning the library should get larger. Considering the relative size of the population, however, one shouldn’t expect to see the library get too much larger. Despite the size of the library, there are actually a lot of solid titles in the mix to provide enough value for subscribers. It’s easy to be distracted by library sizes – just because there are more titles in a library doesn’t immediately make it a better library.

There are 1007 titles in the Luxembourg store (as per 6 January 2015).

Netflix-Luxembourg

Titles included in the Popular On Netflix section are:
Brooklyn Nine Nine (TV), Under The Dome (TV), Skyfall (TV), The Big Bang Theory (TV), Breaking Bad (TV), Modern Family (TV), Homeland (TV), Pretty Little Liars (TV), Arrow (TV), Fargo (TV), Sherlock (TV), The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Avengers, Seeking Justice, The Mentalist (TV), New Girl (TV), Shooter, The Help, How I Met Your Mother (TV), Orphan Black (TV), Killer Elite, Ray Donovan (TV), Family Guy (TV), Grimm (TV), The Walking Dead (TV), The Lincoln Lawyer, Fais Pas Ci Fais Pas Ca (TV), The Departed, The Killing – US (TV), All Hail King Julien (TV), The Usual Suspects, Penny Dreadful (TV), The Divide, American Horror Story (TV), Prison Break (TV), Stromberg Der Film, Dexter (TV), Margin Call, Instinct, From Paris With Love, LA Confidential, Once Upon A Time (TV), Man On A Ledge, The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Book of Eli, Man on Fire, Mr Selfridge (TV), The Next Three Days, The Family Stone, Metronome, Sex & The City 2, Broadchurch (TV), Call The Midwife, Eagle Eye, White Collar (TV), Case 39, Luther (TV), The Polar Express, Mystic River, Top Gear (TV), Failure To Launch, Seven, Colombiana, Jobs vs Gates, Good Will Hunting, Misfits (TV), Life (TV), Deadwood (TV), Wreck It Ralph, Elementary (TV), You Again, Lie To Me (TV), Fargo, Due Date.

Perhaps the worst title in the Luxembourg library is this film, Loving Ibiza. Without seeing it, it seems safe to assume it is among the worst films ever made.

IbizaOverall
It’s a small library (the smallest Netflix library in the world), but there are some very good titles in the mix. As long as title churn is frequent enough, subscribers should be happy enough with the service. It can be very easy to get through all of the films one wants to watch quite quickly, however.

 

[Review] Bosch – Pilot Episode

Police procedurals do too much to sex up the murders on screen. They’re flashy, quick, and overly energetic. Ghastly scenes of homicides are shot with so much flair and detail that they are stripped of any semblance of reality that they simply become titillating murder pornography. Worse are shows like the NCIS franchise which mask all of the humanity surrounding these murders with weak jokes and banter.

Bosch is seeking to do things differently. Its ambition is to be the procedural crime series for adults who want to be entertained by something beyond the immature material served to viewers each week. And it succeeds at that – but the presentation of Bosch has an absence that holds it back from being anything more than a procedural that requires any real investment by the viewer.

Starring one of film and TV’s ultimate “It’s that guy” actors, Titus Welliver, Bosch concerns police homicide detective Harry Bosch who has nothing happening in his life outside of his job. Viewers aren’t informed whether Bosch has had a wife or children in the past, but we know that at one stage in the not-too-distant past he was sleeping with a TV news reporter. Beyond that, Bosch is a blank slate.

As the series opens, Bosch is seen chasing a criminal through the city where he eventually shoots the man. Two years later, having been cleared by the department of the shooting, Bosch is set to face a civil trial brought upon by the family of the man who had been shot, of whom claimed the man was unarmed. Bosch, being so consumed by his need to work, takes some unauthorised work on over the weekend to take his mind off the civil suit and finds himself involved in the cold case murder of an abused child.

Bosch is based on a series of Harry Bosch books written by Michael Connelly, who also co-wrote the pilot episode for this series. To date there have been seventeen Harry Bosch books, with his half-brother Mickey Haller featuring in several other books by Connelly. The first Mickey Haller book, The Lincoln Lawyer, was recently adapted into the well-received Matthew McConaughey film.

The production of Bosch is almost flawless, but it is missing something. By the end of the episode, viewers have a partial sense of who Bosch is and what he represents within the show. It’s certainly enough information to tether the viewer to him as a lead character. Where the show doesn’t quite sit right is a production fault – it feels empty. The show offers no music, with few to no close-ups offered of any of the main characters. This same quiet distance is used to great effect in shows like The Wire, but the Baltimore seen in The Wire feels lived in, worn, and abused. Instead Det Harry Bosch is driving through amid the hills of Los Angeles where humanity is lost to the sprawl of suburbia and the isolation of car travel. A cold and distant world has been built around Bosch that just doesn’t quite connect with the viewer.

The world built by The Wire is a tangible comparison with Bosch co-written by Eric Overmyer, who served as a writer and producer on that series before joining David Simon in co-creating the series Treme – a show that filled its own silences with sweet, sweet jazz.

Bosch maintains a quiet, low-fi sophistication that will do well to earn the show a loyal viewership. It feels, in many ways, like an urban version of Longmire in its efforts to bring a maturity back to the American police crime procedural. As a fairly simple procedural series, many may find its detached tone off-putting when faced with returning to watch further episodes of Bosch. The show will earn a devoted audience.

The full first season of Bosch will debut on Amazon Instant Video on 13 February 2015.

Netflix By The Regions Report: Ireland

Purpose Of The Report
When Netflix launch into new territories, they must sign content deals with the rights holders of content in that region. As such, different content appears in different Netflix regions. Furthermore, Netflix don’t just roll out US content into every territory, but rather mix it up with local content that suits the cultural temperament of the territory. The Netflix By The Regions Report is a mere snapshot of the sorts of content on offer in each region and how they differ to other Netflix offerings.

Territory Overview
Netflix has been running in Ireland since January 2012. Currently Irish users can subscribe to one of three tiered subscriptions: One screen at a time in standard definition for €7.99 (US$9.55) per month, two screens to be simultaneously in HD for €8.99 (US$10.74) per month, or the family plan which allows four screens to be used at the same time, all in HD, for €11.99 (US$14.33) a month. A small-ish population means there is limited competition in the streaming space against Netflix. Several DVD by mail companies maintain operation with online streaming competitors coming from pay per unit streaming rather than monthly all-you-can-eat subscribers.

Content
As one would expect, there are a lot of UK TV shows on the service with much of the content coming from Channel 4 and BBC Worldwide. The large amount of UK content in the library will be of significant lure to anglophiles, but few titles in there can really be defined as the ‘Best of British’.

There are 2342 titles in the Ireland library (as per 6 January 2015).

Netflix---IrelandTitles included in the Popular On Netflix section are:
Sons of Anarchy (TV), Brooklyn Nine Nine (TV), Breaking Bad (TV),  The Legend of Hercules, Merlin (TV), Flight, Orange Is The New Black (TV), House (TV), Marco Polo (TV), Sabotage, American Horror Story (TV), Homeland (TV), The Inbetweeners (TV), Horrid Henry (TV), House of Cards – US (TV), Prison Break (TV), Misfits (TV), Toy Story 3, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Dexter (TV), The Office (TV), Just Go With it, Monsters Inc, Dallas Buyers Club, 90210 (TV), The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Brave, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Family, Homefront, Olympus Has Fallen, Jack Reacher, Fringe (TV), Grown Ups, Sherlock (TV), Thor, Luther (TV), White Collar (TV), The Killing – US (TV), The Vampire Diaries (TV), Enders Game, The Frozen Ground, Kevin Hart: Seriously Funny, The IT Crowd (TV), Locke, Iron Man 2, Chuck (TV), Robocop 2014, Top Gear (TV), Step Brothers, Hansel & Gretal, Filth, Lie To Me (TV), Cars 2, Battlestar Galactica (TV), Yu Gi Oh (TV), Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Blackfish, Zombieland, Mr & Mrs Smith, Superbad, Michael McIntyre Showtime (TV), Fresh Meat (TV), Expatriate, The Other Guys, The Railway Man, Grimm (TV), Scrubs (TV), Snitch, Hummingbird, Haunted House 2, Stephen Fry: More Fool Me, The Dictator, A Long Way Down, Warrior.

Toy-Soldiers

Shouldn’t it be legally mandated that every service should have Toy Soldiers available? Nobody should be more than 5 metres away from access to Toy Soldiers at any given moment. It just makes sense.

Overall
There are some wonderful titles in the Ireland Netflix service, but volume-wise, it’s so limited that it wouldn’t take long to tire of the options available. Having such a small population means there is a limited amount of money to spend on content in the region. Furthermore, with practically zero competition, there’s little incentive for Netflix to boost content levels in the region.

[Podcast] Televised Revolution – Remembering Galaxy (Ep 378)

As we kick off 2015, the Televised Revolution panel have joined together once again to discuss their adventures in television over the Christmas/new year break. The panel will discuss the 2014 top ten TV shows downloaded illicitly.

The panel have an extended conversation about the 20th anniversary of the launch of now-dissolved Australian pay TV provider Galaxy. Australia’s first pay TV service.

We also mark the passing of TV greats Edward Herrmann, Donna Douglas, Jeremy Lloyd, and Christine Cavanaugh.

Netflix By The Regions Report: Germany

Purpose Of The Report
When Netflix launch into new territories, they must sign content deals with the rights holders of content in that region. As such, different content appears in different Netflix regions. Furthermore, Netflix don’t just roll out US content into every territory, but rather mix it up with local content that suits the cultural temperament of the territory. The Netflix By The Regions Report is a mere snapshot of the sorts of content on offer in each region and how they differ to other Netflix offerings.

Territory Overview
Netflix opened its doors for business in Germany in September 2014 for a price of €7.99 (US$9.55) for a monthly subscription. Already operating in the market were Maxdome, Watchever, Amazon Prime Instant and Sky Snap. Maxdome, a product delivered by commercial & pay television provider ProSiebenSat.1, have the rights to most of Germany’s local product. Streaming services in Germany have been criticised for not carrying popular and classic movies.

With public and FTA broadcasters dominating much of the German TV market, take-up of pay television services has been relatively low. Currently just 18% of German TV consumers are subscribed to a TV service.

Content
Still a relatively new service, the library in Germany is still being populated. That said, there’s still a large variety of films and TV shows on offer. The TV titles reflect heavily the exact same library of shows one finds in most Netflix regions. The films on offer strongly reflect mainstream Hollywood tastes with a considerably large selection of dramas.

There are 1040 titles in the German store (as per 6 January 2015).

Netflix---Germany

Titles included in the Popular On Netflix section are:
Marco Polo (TV), Orange Is The New Black (TV), The Big Bang Theory (TV), House of Cards, (TV), Modern Family (TV), Suits (TV), Sherlock (TV), Skyfall, Fargo (TV), White Collar (TV), Ray Donovan (TV), Family Guy (TV), Orphan Black (TV), How I Met Your Mother (TV), The Hobbit, The Walking Dead (TV), Lie To Me (TV), The Killing – US (TV), New Girl (TV), American Horror Story (TV), Der Tatortreiniger (TV), The Avengers, Stromberg The Film, Pretty Little Liars (TV), Shooter, Elementary (TV), Penny Dreadful (TV), Dexter (TV), Sons of Anarchy (TV), Prison Break (TV), Killer Elite, Wreck It Ralph, Arrow (TV), Love Actually, Top Gear (TV), Chuck (TV), Luther (TV), Video Game: The Movie, Colombiana, Steve Jobs: The Billion Dollar Hippy, Doctor Who (TV), Life (TV), Stromberg (TV), Pastewka (TV),Seeking Justice, Grimm (TV), From Paris With Love, The Lincoln Lawyer, Margin Call, Superbad, Planet Earth, Breakout Kings, The Book of Eli, How To Train Your Dragon, Man on A Ledge, The Next Three Days, Mord Mit Aussicht (TV), Misfits (TV), Fat Sick & Nearly Dead, Nicht Nachmachen (TV), Fringe (TV), Master of The Universe, Deadwood (TV), South Pacific (TV), Sherlock Holmes, Life As We Know It, He’s Just Not That Into You, Hemlock Grove (TV), Salmon Fishing In The Yemen, Inception, The Departed, American Gangster, Monsters Inc, Fargo.

The documentary “F**k For Forest” about a Berlin community who purport to raise money for charitable causes by making homemade erotic web films sounds compellingly sleazy.

F-For-ForestOverall
The selection of movies and TV shows on offer here are perfectly fine, but there’s little that differentiates itself from most other Netflix markets. There are a handful of German TV series, but the selection of German content is generally very low. Films are available to subscribers dubbed in German or in English.

 

Sensible Chuckle – David Ashby (Episode 1)

Dan Barrett sits down with Danger 5 co-creator/co-writer/actor David Ashby about the second season return of Danger 5. Ashby details the process in bringing the series back and the time-jump to the 80’s.

This is the first of seven podcasts that will tie in with season 2 of Danger 5. Future episodes will feature interviews with other Danger 5 actors and co-creator Dario Russo. Each episode will focus on a different episode, providing quasi-director commentaries to watch along with the show.

Check back in coming days for the podcasts subscription details. Sensible Chuckle will be available on:

iTunes | PocketCasts | Soundcloud | StitcherRSS

 

 

What To Watch? Broadchurch, Galavant, and Empire. [Week of 04 January 2015]

After a very quiet month of dwindling TV options, January is back swinging with series returning from their Christmas hiatus, along with a bunch of returning series, and then there are a bunch of new series launching.

But, where to start? Below we’ve highlighted noteworthy new and returning shows. People may also want to note the return of shows like Banshee, Portlandia, Archer, Father Brown, Silent Witness, Cougar Town, Switched At Birth, Glee, and Death In Paradise.

The Watchlist is a primer for shows that are debuting or have an episode of note. If you want more complete TV listing site, be sure to check out the Pogdesign Calendar. Please note that all dates cited below are in accordance with their local broadcast times/airdates.

Special thanks goes to Jen Knight for assisting in compiling the Watchlist.

Galavant
Airs: 04 January 2015 (ABC – US)
It has been a considerable while since anyone attempted a weekly musical TV series. There have been shows with music featured (Glee, Smash), but not a fully blown musical. While this looks witty and is almost guaranteed to build a vocal and loyal following online, it’s less certain that this will catch on with the mainstream.

It is always great to see something different and risks taken on TV.

Broadchurch – Season 2
Airs: 04 January 2015 (ITV – UK)
Season one of Broadchurch was a contained murder mystery series that was wildly popular, but really didn’t need a second season. But here we are. Will the second season justify its existence?

Marvel’s Agent Carter
Airs: 06 January 2015 (ABC – US)
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was a highly anticipated disappointment. While the show has certainly gotten better than it was at launch, it has still failed to live up to its promise. The push by Marvel to conquer the small screen as it did with the big screen continues with Agent Carter, a series based on the female lead from the first Captain America movie. With Captain America 2 having been and gone, it’s a risk that many viewers will even remember Peggy Carter. Regardless, this does actually look pretty fun. And Hayley Atwell is pretty much perfect (as far as we here at Televised Revolution are concerned).

Count Arthur Strong
Airs: 06 January (BBC1 – UK)
It’s a very traditional UK sitcom, but for those into that kind of show, I’m told it’s one of the better ones. #faintpraise

 

Empire
Airs: 07 January 2015 (Fox – US)
The efforts by US broadcasters to try and meet the expectations placed on drama series since the rise of premium TV shows on the US cable networks has been fascinating. It has largely been show after show of hollow and flaccid drama series attempting to be perceived as edgy. Instead they’ve been chores to watch. Will Empire buck the trend? One should expect a solid pilot, followed by uncertainty as the series moves forward.

The Book of Negroes
Airs: 07 January 2015 (CBC – Canada)
A mini-series based on the book of the same name (released in some countries as ‘Someone Knows My Name’). It’s difficult to get too excited over this series, following the recent success of the excellent 12 Years A Slave.

Hindsight
Airs: 07 January 2015 (VH1 – US)
The idea of people being able to travel back in time and change their lives in some way can be appealing. It’s also an obvious narrative conceit, which is why we’ve already seen so many movies and TV shows explore the idea. Here is another. And, to be honest, it looks very easy to watch.

Crims
08 January 2014 (BBC3 – UK)
Comedy/drama following Luke who has been sentenced for two years in prison for his part in an armed robbery masterminded by his girlfriends idiot brother.