General Open Thread – TV Shows

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This topic contains 1,006 replies, has 66 voices, and was last updated by  JimTheFish 8 years, 9 months ago.

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    wolfweed @wolfweed

    I bought Party Animals yesterday and devoured all 7 hours last night. I heartily enjoyed it!
    Watch it here:

    HTPBDET @htpbdet


    Yes, Party Animals was terrific stuff.

    Stupid BBC not making more…

    thommck @thommck

    Only just noticed this thread so thought I’d give a shout out to “Luther” which is currently on BBC1/iPlayer. Not SF but a good crime thriller and the lead character would probably fit in quite well in a more mature Doctor Who ep!

    I’ve also been enjoying the latest series (3) of The Walking Dead. It’s really come on in leaps and bounds since the 1st series.

    If you’re looking at box-sets “In The Flesh” was brilliant (glad they confirmed a 2nd 6ep series) and I really loved “Outcasts” and was gutted when I heard it was cancelled :'(. I also really enjoyed Six Feet Under which is an oldie but a goody. Comedy-wise I couldn’t recommend “Arrested Development” and “Parks & Recreation” highly enough 😀

    Thought I’d point out the website run by Tesco. You get loads of free TV and Films just by giving them your clubcard number. My kids watch a lot of stuff on it but I’ve noticed there is some quite good TV on there, Flash Gordon and The Collector look like they could be entertaining. If anyone has any recommendations from there let me know!

    For my sins, I also watch “True Blood” with my wife for a bit of late night escapism. It’s completely ridiculous but quite amusing at the same time

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Just watched ‘Tin Man’ (2007). I was amused, as the psychic lions are a blatant rip off of the Tharils from Dr Who’s ‘Warrior’s Gate’ (Which happens to be one of my favourite stories)…..

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    Saddened by the news that Mel Smith has died. I adored Not the Nine O’Clock News and Alas Smith and Jones when growing up. Article in the Guardian and a life in clips piece, which doesn’t feature this one (bit of a line running through it, but the audio is great for a VHS rip) as Mel delivers his take on Sinatra.

    Nick @nick


    re Ãkta Människore (Real Humans)?

    My wife (who is French) watched it avidly on French TV (ARTE channel) where it was dubbed into French. She enjoyed it and given she is particularly choosy I think that is a recommendation. I saw a bit but not enough to comment. The concept revolves around the creation and integration of human appearing robots into society plus has some skullduggery around some of the Androids being self aware.


    Anonymous @

    I’m watching Dara O’Briain’s new series of Science Club on the BBC.  @bluesqueakpip – your avatar features in this episode, starting around 10 minutes in.

    If you haven’t seen the previous series, then it’s kind of slick / packaged science, but Dara is so knowledgeable and congenial a host, and has such interesting concepts to explore, that you forgive them making the audience stand the whole time.

    (And, Dara O’B is the only human being who can talk faster than me, so I salute him. 🙂

    Anonymous @

    Just in case anyone wasn’t watching The Reichenbach Fall tonight, here’s the Sherlock season three teaser that’s now doing the rounds:

    It’s all getting rather exciting, isn’t it?

    chickenelly @chickenelly

    Ooooh oooh!

    What’s Dr Watson doing with that dodgy moustache?

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    What’s Dr Watson doing with that dodgy moustache?

    @chickenelly – trying to look like he is in no way related to any hobbits and is definitely not about to have a nice chat with Smaug?



    Cath Annabel @cathannabel

    Any other Whovians recently unsettled/fascinated/intrigued/hooked by The Returned?

    Anonymous @

    Hello Cath Annabel – I don’t have a TV, so only watch iPlayer programmes (BBC) myself.  I’ve found the Channel 4 website to be a bit problematic with my rural broadband service.  However, I’ve been following the Guardian’s blog on the series and it sounds fascinating.

    I assume you’ve been watching The Returned?  What are your thoughts?

    Cath Annabel @cathannabel

    I was always going to watch it, with it being (a) French and (b) about zombies.  Except only the first was really accurate – we’re not in Walking Dead territory here.  I thought it was incredible – subtle and ambiguous and creepy (very, very creepy).  I’m getting it on DVD when I can, as it will most def repay rewatching – lots of little details that I’m sure I missed (one downside of the subtitles – my French is no way good enough to follow the dialogue without looking at them).   You’ll have got a flavour from the series blog but do watch it when you can.  Top TV of this year for me.

    Anonymous @

    I’m still pushing the BBC’s Dara O Briain’s Science Club programme.

    Episode Two of this series is called ‘Adventures in Time’ and although it has nothing to do with DW, it’s still fascinating and easily accessible science.  And worth it in this episode for the lab-grown, self-beating heart alone.  Plus there are explosions in slow-mo and some discussion of the ‘cosmic dark ages’.  All quite interesting as well as informative.

    And no, I have nothing to do with BBC publicity.  I just think that this kind of programme can get people excited about science, and certainly there are worlds to be devised in science fiction which can riff off the cutting-edge science being performed – and theorised about – today.

    overunder @jamesunderscore

    Has anyone else been watching Top Of The Lake?

    The wife and I have been absolutely engrossed in it since watching the first four episodes in a row a couple of weeks ago. The characters are so well drawn, the setting is breathtaking and the plot and levels of symbolism and imagery would lend themselves very well to bonkers theorising were the series longer than six episodes.

    Anonymous @

    jamesunderscore – I’ve actually been avoiding the episode recap on The Guardian because I sort of intended to watch Top of the Lake, but I guess I was waiting for confirmation from someone who was enjoying it.  iPlayer is keeping all episodes available for 6 weeks after broadcast (it appears) so I’ve been lackadaisical.

    Now that you’ve said you and the wife love it – and you mention bonkers theorising ™ 🙂 – perhaps I’ll get my viewing arse in gear and get onto it.

    Anonymous @

    I’m becoming a bore with my promotion of Dara O Briain’s Science Club I fear, but as usual this week’s episode was interesting and informative.

    And, it has Michio Kaku as a special guest. I had not known that at the age of 17 he built a particle accelerator in his garage.

    Anonymous @

    @Shazzbot — just to second the love of Science Club. It’s a bit silly sometimes but there’s usually some good stuff on it.

    And Michio Kaku is one of my heroes. A seriously big brain and possibly the only science writer I can think of who can describe things like multiverses, bubble universes, string theory and the like in a way that you actually have a chance of understanding (with John Gribbin coming a close second).

    Anonymous @

    I love Stargazing Live and School Of Hard Sums but as much as I think DOB’s programs and presenting skills are great, this series of Science Club has been sadly lacking something. That ‘something’ of course being Polish Vodka 😉

    @Shazzbot, there’s one thing no-one could accuse you of and that’s being ‘a bore’ 🙂

    @jimthefish I’ll second your Michio Kaku opinions. About a year ago the Freeview channel ‘Quest’ broadcast a series of programs in which he explored the possibility of classic Sci-fi ‘gizmos’, such as the Death Star, Lightsabers, Warp Speed/Time Travel, Transporters and Terminators,  becoming a reality in the future.

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox @jimthefish

    About a year ago the Freeview channel ‘Quest’ broadcast a series of programs in which he [Michio Kaku] explored the possibility of classic Sci-fi ‘gizmos’, such as the Death Star, Lightsabers, Warp Speed/Time Travel, Transporters and Terminators, becoming a reality in the future.

    But sonic screwdrivers … did he mention sonic screwdrivers?  🙂

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot – sadly, no 🙁

    The series was called ‘Physics of the Impossible’ and Series 1 Ep9 explored robots so you could make your very own K-9.

    Alternatively, if universal domination appeals, Series 2 Ep9 showed you how to make a Cyborg Army ( or, if you prefer, Cybermen).


    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – how interesting.  That makes the latest episode of Science Club have more resonance, because they showed robots who are able to ‘learn’ … which means, Cyborg Armies are coming … *leaps behind the sofa screaming*

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot, yeah cos that ickle wickle robot that DOB ‘talked’ to was really scary 🙂

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – no, not that one!  The ones Alok Jha visited in the States.  Granted, it might take them until next year just to learn how to negotiate steps, but it’s a short run from there to world domination, I tells ya.  😉

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot – there is this little chap who can already walk. In fact he can run and dance as well

    ASIMO as seen on QI

    Be afraid…be very afraid 😮

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – yeah, I saw that, too.  But Asimo can’t learn on his own like what we saw in Science Club – he can only do what he’s programmed to.

    It’s too bad all these scientists are working separately, trying to win major awards – if they worked together, and took Asimo’s pedal dexterity, added that to the robot who can ascribe adjectives to the things it touches’ with its hands, and pinched in a bit of the robot who can ‘learn’ from its own walking mistakes … we’d have a robot that I’d marry in a heartbeat (provided it takes out the rubbish and laughs at all of my jokes  😀 ).

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox — I think that series is based on Kaku’s book of the same name. Well worth a read. Although I wish I’d seen the series. Might have to check it out.

    @shazzbot — with regards sonic screwdrivers, I refer you to Paul Parson’s The Science of Doctor Who, which is actually quite a fun read…

    Oh and here’s Michio Kaku discussing Who:

    Anonymous @

    @jimthefish – gaaah!  BBC America again.   I’ve always said there’s no way in hades I’d ever move back there, but I’m starting to think I have one reason now … 🙂

    Anonymous @

    This has been kicking around for a few days and am slightly surprised that no one has brought it up. New version of Blakes 7 not quite dead in the water yet then?

    Whether it’ll be any good or not is an entirely different matter…

    Anonymous @

    @tardisblue – we have a TV topic – you can tell us all about your Broadchurch love here – and no-one will spoil it for you, don’t worry.

    Me, I’m squeeing with delight that The Great British Bake-off is back!  For the next 10 weeks, I’m going to be inspired to do even more baking.  (But nothing anywhere near as glamorous or as difficult as what the contestants produce on the show, mind.)  I’ve gone off MasterChef in a big way, but GBBO still delights me.  It’s just so sweet (haw haw) somehow, and the little bits of background information on baking traditions are wonderful.  Mel & Sue ** are lovely and supportive, Mary and Paul the perfect good cop/bad cop judges, and the people who make it onto the show seem to be so utterly, completely normal, unlike any other kind of ‘reality TV’.

    ** TardisBlue – you left off Sue Perkins from your list of every man and his dog who was talked about for the next Doctor.  🙂

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot and all Science Club fans, here’s a link to the original ‘Powers Of Ten’ video as mentioned in last nights program. I remember being transfixed by this when I first saw it back in ’77. Alex Funke, VFX Director Of Photography on Lord Of The Rings, worked on this documentary.

    The Powers Of Ten


    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – that was fascinating, thanks for posting it.

    I’ve been working all morning so haven’t seen last night’s Science Club yet – but now I’m looking forward to it more than ever.

    wolfweed @wolfweed
    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    I know there are a couple of Buffy fans in here, and probably also some Marvel Comics fans as well, so:

    The new TV series, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D will be aired in the UK on Channel 4. Which is a bit of a relief to those of us who flatly refuse to buy Sky.

    The executive producer is Joss Whedon, the main showrunners will be his brother and his sister-in-law, Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen (clearly, Mutant Enemy is a family company). Clark Gregg will be reprising his movie role of Agent Coulson.

    And Iain de Caestecker from the Fades is also in there 🙂

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord


    Delighted to hear that C4 is getting it. I still can’t believe the Fades didn’t get a second series. 🙁

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    Talking of spy stuff with at least one link to the Whedon Universe, I spent some time away with a box set of Chuck. Probably still one of my favourite comedy action-adventure series. It’s so stuffed with geek references and big names willing to send up established personas. Adam Baldwin is brilliant as NSA ultra-agent John Casey. If anyone doubted he had a gift for comedy after Firefly, they should try to catch this series. Absolutely bonkers.

    Anonymous @

    @jimthefish @fatmaninabox and @ everyone else —

    Another head’s up for Dara O Briain’s Science Club on the BBC.  The latest episode has this quite wonderfully disconcerting fact:

    There are about 1.4 kilos of microbes that live in our gut alone.  That’s about the same weight as our brain.

    Daily Mail reader comparisons are beneath us, I’m sure.  🙂

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot – I misread you’re quote from SC. I thought it said ‘microbees’ 😕  ! So that’s where they’ve all gone 😯

    My sleeping patterns have gone bonkers again – insomnia accompanied by, when I do actually get some shut-eye, sleep paralysis – so I missed it last night. Thanks for the link, I’ll try to catch up during the week. Sounds as fascinating as usual.

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – well, caffeine aside (have you tried rooibuis tea?  Non-caffeineated; but unlike herbal tea, really works well with milk so allows a milky tea experience without that which will disrupt sleep patterns) –

    Back to Science Club, last night’s episode references a ‘Syncatron’.  What more does one need to watch?!

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot – I’ve just googled ‘syncatron’ but it bought up ‘sychratron’ (something to do with cyclic particle accelerators) – I now have a headache 🙂

    I think I’ll let Mr O’ Briain and his team explain it to me, it may make more sense than the Wikipedia entry 😀


    stevethewhistle @steve-thorp

    @Shazzbot, @fatmaninabox

    Here is the correct spelling and definition from the New SOED that I have stored on my computer.


    n.M20. [f. SYNCHRO- + -TRON.]


    An accelerator in which electrons or protons gain energy from an alternating electric field as they travel round a closed orbit in a magnetic field, the strength or frequency of the field being increased to keep the radius of the path constant as the particles gain mass relativistically.

    Comb.: synchrotron radiation polarized radiation emitted by a charged particle as it spirals at high speed in a magnetic field.



    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox stevethewhistle – thanks for the clarification!  I was going by Helen Czerski’s pronunciation in the episode which was obviously nothing like the actual spelling.

    All spelling aside, though, cool tech and well worth the watching of the latest Science Club instalment to learn more.  (and, the whole gut microbes = brain size bombshell 🙂  ).

    Whisht @whisht

    Is this the right place for a bonkers silly idea for a revamped TV show crossed with Doctor Who?

    Bear with me…


    Two agents, one thoughtful and law-abiding, the other a dashing ex-soldier, wooing “companions” from their time-travelling Capri.
    Together, they fight crime.

    Yes – its the Celestial Intervention Agency crossed with The Professionals.

    its C.I.V (“V” as in 5)

    dahhh dahhh dahhhh dahh, duum-duum doom!



    [nah, its sunny, didn’t bring a coat….]

    Anonymous @

    @whisht – Love it! Nearly choked on my Coco-pops reading it, but love it 🙂

    The obvious contenders for the Agents would be River Song instead of Doyle (it’s the hair) and Cap’n Jack replacing Bodie (let’s face it, Jack’d be wooing companions and baddies alike).

    Weirdly, Alex Kingston and John Barrowman did recently comment, jokingly I think, about a possible series featuring Jack and River.

    If I were you, I’d get that idea copyrighted then sell the format to the Beeb 😉

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    Further information on Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD – Channel 4 are going to broadcast it on Friday nights, three days after it first airs in the US. So it premieres here on 27th September.

    Anonymous @

    As one door closes (Science Club) another opens. QI – Series ‘K’ starts on Friday, BBC2 at 10pm.

    Guests making their 1st appearance on the show include…

    Noel Fielding, Tim Minchin, Isy Suttie, Josh Widdicombe, Brendan O’Carroll, Janet Street-Porter, Richard Osman (from ‘Pointless’ and brother of Suede’s Mat Osman) and Victoria Wood.

    They’ll be joined by the usual suspects (Bill Bailey, Sandi Toksvig, Phil Jupitus, Jimmy Carr and Jo Brand) and some bloke called Alan Davies 🙂

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – is that it, then, for Science Club?  6 episodes?  Drat.  Although a new QI series is to be applauded and lauded and celebrated in equal measure.  Noel Fielding?  Tim Minchin?  Be still my beating heart, especially if Bill Bailey is back as well.

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox and @ everyone else – Got this email today from HatTrick Productions:

    We are pleased to announce that the new series of ‘Have I Got News For You’ will go online booking from 14:00pm on Monday 16th September! BOOK HERE:

    The shows will be held on Thursday evenings throughout October – December at The London Studios, all dates are listed in full on the website.

    I’m angling for tickets on Thursday 21st November. Let me know if you want to come to the taping on that night; I’ll get as many tickets as I can scoop up. (It’s the Thursday before the big 50th DW Anniversary weekend, natch.)

    Anonymous @

    @shazzbot – yes, sadly, Science Club is no more (till next year?). For those (like me) who missed it, the last episode is repeated again tonight at 20 past midnight on BBC2.

    I’ll finally find out what the ‘brain-sized bombshell’ you alluded to is 🙂

    Anonymous @

    @fatmaninabox – Science Club is available on iPlayer without need of waiting up so late – and I hope your insomnia is going away.

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