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Thoughts on Game of Thrones, The Chicago Code, The Killing

Thoughts on this week’s Game of Thrones, The Chicago Code, and The Killing:

Game of Thrones: I’ve never read anything in the A Song of Ice and Fire series, so watching Game of Thrones uninitiated was slightly daunting. I looked at some of the “cheat sheets” from several fansites, but I was otherwise ignorant to any of the inner workings of the series.

It works. Well. While the large cast of characters creates a choppy and thematically uneven pilot, I don’t think there is any other way to create a first episode for a series with so many characters and relationships. Odd character names and thick accents aside, Game of Thrones has the potential to be a highly entertaining show (such as True Blood) but may struggle to ascend to another tier of HBO drama reserved for The Sopranos or The Wire because of its sheer ridiculousness and lack of thematic coherency. Still, it’s filled with a charismatic cast with plenty of gore, betrayal, and of course, nudity.

Grade: B

The Chicago Code: People really do underestimate women in power. Police chiefs, lawyers, and even gangsters. And sometimes, women are able to use the expectations others have of them in order to achieve a desired result (see: Anna Chase). Last night’s episode was about three women, Superintendent Teresa Colvin, defense attorney Anna Chase, and clerk Bernadette. Teresa balances the responsibilities of being the super of a police force that doesn’t trust her ability to enact necessary change and a murder that is in the front of the public eye; she is able to successfully maneuver a small win for her job with the help of Wysocki and Evers. Yet it is her innate nature of challenging expectations that puts her at odds with the majority of the force.  Is it because she’s a woman? Perhaps. But even if it is, she still need to prove herself in a man’s world; overcoming innate sexism is an unfortunate aspect of her job.

Grade: A-

The Killing: Sad. Slow. Rain. Brooding. Secrets. Great acting. I’ve come to expect this from The Killing, and while I appreciate the time taken on the Larsen case for more character exploration, I wish things would start moving a bit quicker. Because of the nature of the show, the audience is well aware that anyone brought in as a suspect this early most likely isn’t the killer (of course he or she isn’t). Still, the series is too beautifully shot and acted to care… at least, for now.

Grade: B+


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