May 20, 2020
Rules here are the same as they are with the movies thread: If you post spoilers, warn beforehand. Other than that, say whatever you want.

Let's, see, recently I watched:

Tremors (2003) - This series aired on Sci-Fi channel back in the day. It has the only 100% pure attendance regular of the Tremors franchise: Michael Gross. The other cast members are pretty much first-timers. Some of the guest regulars includes Christopher Lloyd, Michael Rooker, and an episode with Vivica A. Fox. This was essentially a "Freak of the Week" series that went 13 episodes. I didn't really understand how much material could be used to provide an entire TV series about "graboids", "screechers" and "ass blasters". Sure enough, after the first three or four episodes, they add another element to the series pertaining to what is in today's standards the gene-splicing CRISPR experiment with massive steroids, which opens the door to all kinds of hybrid creatures prowling about the town of Perfection.
It's not that great of a series, but it was alright for what it has to offer. The characters are likeable, some of the creativity of the low budget was utilized well to provide a passable visualization of some rather robust creature concepts. I don't think anyone needs to watch it, but if you like this kinda stuff, it will deliver well enough.

Skin: A History of Nudity in the Movies (2020) - A somewhat interesting documentary on the cultural shifts in mainstream movies and how nudity has always been prevalent in film. I must say, I am quite educated on this subject. I think they hit about 60% of the essential representations of nudity in film from the 1920s to the late-2000s. However, there were also many things missing. I found the most fascinating part of the documentary was when they were discussing the earlier years, with the Hayes Code, up to roughly 1970, when hardcore porn (like "Debbie Does Dallas", "The Green Door", and "Deep Throat") were part of normal movie theater releases at the time. Granted, as stated in this doc, "Midnight Cowboy" was X-rated and won Best Picture that year... and then X became the de-facto ownership of hardcore sex movies shortly thereafter. As a huge movie buff, I found most of this talk about people in the buff to be slightly informative... but a lot of references that I would have found fascinating to discuss ended up not being referenced at all.
It's not "bad", and I think for more average movie watchers, this would be informative and educational. There is a lot of nudity in this documentary, though, so if you're offended by lots of boobs, asses, and - GULP - even man-things, then skip it. ;)

Pretending I'm Superman: The Tony Hawk Video Game Story (2020) - This is a 1hr 15min documentary about Tony Hawk's contribution to the Tony Hawk console releases. It's a rather lengthy commercial/promotional video for the Tony Hawk 1 & 2 reboot release that just came out. Slightly interesting, but not that educational. Kinda cool to hear some of the real-life skaters from those earlier games talking about how the series boosted their image, and skateboarding popularity in general.

Perry Mason (2020) - This is a so-called "darker" take on Perry Mason as we may have known him from the old Raymond Burr era. Season 1 is, at its core, an origin story. But beware... this version of Perry Mason has moral ambiguities, and (OMG) is an alcoholic! Woah! It's not bad. But it also isn't worthy of your attention if you have other stuff to watch. Take it or leave it.

The Terror, Seasons 1 - 2 (2018 - 2019) - This is a fantasy/thriller/horror series that has self-encapsulated seasons. Season 1 covered a real life event of an expedition of British sailors who tried to circumnavigate the North Pole back in 1842. That's about as far as the truth of the story goes. This first season had a great cast, some solid writing, but a lackluster desire to throw pseudo-paranormal and psychological events into the equation. I would recommend season 1 for people that love slow moving, character-driven thrillers that display the ever-spiraling descent into madness due to the stresses of ship-based adventures of the mid-19th century. I liked it, but it lacked real vision and dramatic bite once all was said and done. It was carried mostly by the awesome cast.
Season 2 takes place mostly at a Japanese internment camp in the U.S. during WWII. A family is haunted by a strange spirit that seems hell-bent on destroying any chance of happiness. This ghost is a "yurei", which is essentially a Japanese folklore spirit demon. There is a lot of other Japanese spirit-lore thrown into the mix. I was intrigued for the first 3 or 4 episodes. But then, it started to get more and more stupid. By the last three episodes, I felt like I didn't even need to watch the rest. I finished the season, though, and I must say that it pretty much sucked. Would I watch a third season? Not sure. This reminds me of "American Horror Story", where I watched 5 seasons of that show before I realized that although they may have many great ideas and moments of inspiration, the writers/creators really have no clue how to close a deal with satisfaction.

The Civil War (1990) - The famous Ken Burns documentary on the civil war. It was "good". I don't love it like many people do. I will say this, though... there is a letter read aloud at the end of the first season that blew me the fu*k away. It was written by a Major sent to his wife just before the Battle of Bull Run. I will cut and paste my translation for all of you to read. After this, I will say nothing more about the documentary:

Before the battle of Bull Run in 1861 (Civil War), Sullivan Ballou wrote a letter to his wife:
July 14, 1861, Washington DC
Dear Sarah,
The indications are very strong that we shall move in a few days, perhaps tomorrow, and lest I should not be able to write you again, I feel compelled to write you a few lines that may fall under your eye when I am no more. I have no misgivings about, or lack of confidence in the cause of which I am engaged, and my courage does not halt or falter.
I know how American civilization leans now upon the triumph of the government, and how great a debt we owe to those who went before us through the blood and suffering of the revolution, and I am willing, perfectly willing to lay down all my joys in this life to help maintain this government, and to pay that debt.
Sarah... my love for you is deathless. It seems to bind me with mighty cables that nothing but omnipotence can break, and yet my love of country comes over me like a strong wind, and bares me irresistably with all those chains to the battlefield. The memory of all the blissful moments I have enjoyed with you come crowding over me, and I feel most deeply grateful to God, and you, that I have enjoyed them for so long. How hard it is for me to give them up and burn to ashes the hopes and the future years, when God willing we might still have hoped, and lived together and seen our boys grow up to honorable manhood around us.
If I do not return, my dear Sarah, never forget how much I loved you, nor that the last breath escapes me on the battlefield, it will whisper your name.
Forgive my many faults and the many pains I have caused you. How thoughtless, how foolish I have sometimes been, but oh Sarah, if the dead can come back to this earth, and flit unseen around those they love, I shall always be with you in the brightest day and the darkest night. Always. Always. And when the soft breeze fans your cheek, it shall be my breath, or the cool air at your throbbing temple, it shall be my spirit passing by.
Sarah, do not mourn me dead. Think I am gone, and wait for me, for we shall meet again.

He died a week later at the battle of Bull Run.


May 20, 2020
Damn, I went over 10,000 characters. I'm an over-achiever!
Here's part 2:

The Vietnam War (2017) - Another Ken Burns documentary. I have a better than average background on the Vietnam War compared to most whiteys, so I wondered how much I would get out of this documentary. I got a LOT out of it. Scratch that, I got a SHITLOAD out of it. This was far and away the most arresting, informative, well researched, frustrating, heartbreaking and downright enraging documentary I have ever seen. Every episode only adds more twists and turns to this long-ass story about Vietnam's quest for independence. It goes in-depth into the ignorance, arrogance, and outright racist motivations that led the U.S. into investing over 20 years of American troops into a war that may have STARTED with good intentions, but ended up being a quest to justify selfish motivations.
This documentary is a must-see. I give it my highest recommendation. Just... phenomenal.

11.22.63 (2016) - I'm a huge Stephen King fan. I have read all his books, and I have watched almost all the movies and TV series based on his crap (a lot of his stuff really is just crap). I really enjoyed the book 11.22.63, which is a sci-fi drama that has a man from the present get zapped through a time-traveling rabbit hole into 1958. However the man who introduced him to this rabbit hole tried for many years to prevent JFK from getting assassinated. Thus, our main character tries to fulfill this dream, but can't come back THROUGH the hole unless he wants to start over on the same moment each time he goes back.
I didn't watch this one for a while, because it stars James Franco. I don't hate the guy, but I wouldn't say he has many acting chops. I liked the book enough to think "I don't want to see James Franco be a dillweed and ruin the chance of goodness this series could provide." However, I also want to give stuff a chance.
I am SO glad I gave this mini-series a chance. James Franco fu*king brought home the bacon. Big time. He blew my mind. This guy actually seemed to give a shit in this role! He was mostly tender, and likeable... but there were a few scenes where he needed to Bring the Pain and put the smackdown on ne'er do-wells. He made these no-gooders look like fu*king fools for being a dick in the face of this guy's fury.
Oh, and it's also an amazingly tender and well-paced lighthearted love story that unfolds in a slow but never boring manner... and delivers a bittersweet conclusion that was pitch-perfect to the elements of the book that made me appreciate it. I loved this series, and I can't believe that I appreciated James Franco's performance!
Finally, there was some stuff about trying to save JFK, but that's like, 15% of what this "drama" paid attention to.

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, Seasons 5 - 7 (2013 - 2020) - I can't say I ever liked this series. But now that it's over, I thought I'd finish it. In a nutshell: Season 5 was lame. Season 6 wasn't all that good, but there were a couple good episodes. Season 7 was the best season of the whole series. I love that it was obvious they knew this was the end of the series, so they just went "fu*k it" and did whatever the hell they wanted. It starts out with a time travel concept about trying to fix the timeline (which is a DIRECT negation to ALL the science established in the previous season, but... like I said, it's like they don't give a shit at this point). So, they use that concept to have the team live through the 1920s, the 1940s, 60s, 70s, and 80s eras, while filming and writing the episodes with direct homages to some of the most famous aspects of those eras. I liked that.
There was also a "Groundhog Day" episode that I wasn't initially impressed with. However, the last 15-20 minutes was probably the best of all of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D ever written.
The conclusion kinda sucks, but season 7 made it all worth it.

Hunt for the Skinwalker (2018) - This was about Skinwalker Ranch, which is known for high levels of UFO acitivy, alien sightings, strange phenomenons, and people living in the area constantly telling stories about their weird experiences.
There is no actual documented video footage. I guess it's because the aliens know our technology, and avoid cameras. Also, they don't repeat their pranks on these people.
Kinda interesting. Can't say it's all that valuable to watch though, since the aliens always seem to be 1 to 20 steps ahead of these guys. For 50+ years. Darn.