100 things to do in 1000 days; #65/66: Watch Terriers.

So. Terriers. As a self-described TV fanatic who supplements her habit with a considerable dose of online discussion, recaps, and trivia, I had heard a lot about Terriers before deciding to settle down an actually watch it. Terriers was one of those well-beloved but little-watched shows that were given one season and an unsuccessful “Save The Show” campaign to make their mark on the television landscape.

I love a well-acted drama and a well-told story, but I think, in the case of TV, I tend to wait until a heavy dramatic series has finished its run before actually watching it through. Same with books – I refuse to read Game of Thrones until the series is complete. So although I consider myself a TV fan, I haven’t seen Mad Men, Sons of Anarchy, Boardwalk Empire, Friday Night Lights, Deadwood, The Shield, Game of Thrones (now it just looks like I’m a pretender to the throne! I swear I’m not – let me list all the TV I DO watch! You will be amazed! And, somehow, I will still wind up ashamed…), or a dozen other critically acclaimed shows that the television connoisseur must watch if she wants to keep her reputation. Also, while watching TV, much like while reading, I tend to get overly invested in characters and situations. I find it much more fun this way – what’s the point in NOT allowing yourself to get all absorbed a story? What’s the point (especially when watching drama) if you’re NOT going to care about what happens? You may as well spend your time doing something productive.

I’m like Abed – I like liking things.

But when you let yourself care and get carried away with fiction, it can be draining. I need to have a certain amount of a specific type of energy stored up within myself if I’m going to be immersed in the worlds of The Wire or Six Feet Under.

I watched Terriers in two bursts – the first 6 episodes a few weeks ago, and the last 7 episodes a couple days ago, both times sitting at my computer for about 5 straight hours.

The acting is phenomenal. Donal Logue as Hank Dolworth, especially, blew me away. The long- and short- term arcs were well-planned. The series is beautifully shot. I loved Hank, I cared about Britt and Katie, the cases of the week were mostly effectively portrayed. But I don’t think I really liked the show. I’m not sure I’ll ever watch it again. I’m not really sure why – at one point, while writing this, I was prepared to say “Terriers is overrated” and have done with it. But that’s not really true. All the praise heaped on the show – I can’t argue with any of it. I’m glad the show exists, I don’t begrudge anyone’s enjoyment of it (in contrast, I DO begrudge people’s enjoyment of Two and Half Men). And it’s not as though I hate thinking about a show after I turn the TV (or computer) off. Maybe I just didn’t find it as funny as many who watched seemed to – so maybe there wasn’t enough lightness there to balance out the bleak worldview and messy, minor victories. I didn’t find some of the plot twists as clever and unexpected as many did – and I’m not being haughty; you can’t fool everyone all the time, and I’m usually not especially great at guessing good twists advance, so maybe my brain just works in a similar way as the writers’*. Maybe it just didn’t gel with my personality, I don’t know. I’m not sure I would recommend the show – it’s certainly worth checking out for the reasons listed above, but personally, watching it gave me very little joy.






* SPOILERS AHEAD: For what it’s worth, Jason’s death shocked the hell out of me, and the reveal of the real rapist was very effective in playing with crime TV conventions and audience expectations.


Posted on February 1, 2012, in 100 things in 1000 days, TV and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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