Friday, August 27, 2010

What I'm Watching

TV for me is something I switch on when I'm eating, or if I have nothing else better to do, or I'm overcome by an intense desire to vegetate. I usually watch whatever is on - maybe a film or some program that catches my fancy - or I bemoan the lack of quality programming while flipping channels for the next half-hour.

However, I have become a staunch follower and fan of two TV programmes, both of which run on Star World.

Richard Castle and Det. Kate Beckett
The first one is Castle. This is easily one of the best-written murder mysteries on TV. The scripts every episode are phenomenal; they're high-paced, witty and never guessable. The latter is what draws me so much to the show - they don't try to present you with facts and give you a chance to guess. It's crime fiction written in the true, original sense: here's the mystery we're solving, why don't you sit back and enjoy? Of course, it also helps that Detective Kate Beckett (Stana Katic) is insanely hot.

The cast of 'Castle'
Apart from the murders, the supporting story (and cast) are phenomenally written; it's obvious a lot of thought has gone into them as well. Ryan and Esposito as the support cops do a terrific job; their chemistry with the lead pair is spot-on and they have some very funny lines. Castle's mother and daughter Alexis turn in very strong performances; what I especially like is how they provide the common-sense and epiphany angle to Castle.

Finally, Richard Castle is a novelist. He's a writer, and that's what I am becoming. He's a world-famous, best-selling author, and that's what I want to be. He is working with his muse, who is super-hot with personality and intelligence to match, and who wouldn't want to have that? The chemistry between the lead pair is crackling.

Every day, when the show ends, I want to run to the internet and download every episode and watch them immediately, but I hold myself back and wait for the next episode to air on TV.

Master Chef Australia
The second show that I'm really into is Master Chef Australia. I'm surprised that I'm into a reality show, especially a cooking show considering I'm a strict vegetarian. But Master Chef Australia has that certain something that draws me to it and actually has me biting my nails, metaphorically. It might have something to do with the Australian accent, but it most certainly has to do with the format of the show. Every week, without fail, I have been stunned by the innovations they come up with on the show.

The Master Chef Judges
In the first week, the two chefs who were battling each other in the elimination round actually had a knowledge round where they had to write the name of the bird to which the egg they were being shown belonged. True to its name, they had Master Classes with true Master Chefs - increasing the knowledge of the participants, because that's what it's about, right? It's not a gladiatorial contest between chefs; you're preparing a chef who is good enough to be called a Master Chef. Next week, the two who are trying to survive elimination have to save a terrible dish and make it taste wonderful - a very real, practical skill that is so useful and necessary in the world outside television.

Sure, Master Chef Australia doesn't have a super-hot judge like Padma Lakshmi, but that might actually be working in their favour, because now all the attention is focused where it should be - on the contestants, rather than on Padma Lakshmi's chest or well-fitting jeans or her lips when she talks. I find the bald judge over-the-top and theatrical, but the other two are all right, and they all have very precise points of what they liked and what they thought could be improved. Their feedback is easily one of the most helpful I've seen.

The only thing that worries me is that Star World is trying to muck up the goodwill from these two shows. They've messed around with Castle a lot already, by not sticking to one time slot and playing far too many reruns. They haven't done anything with Master Chef Australia yet, but there are still a lot of episodes left; anything can happen.

1 comment:

Prakrite said...

I want to see Castle now :)