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What are you favorite American TV Series?

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x9200
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Postby x9200 » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 6:30 pm

What's technically the difference?

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Postby Brah » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 6:41 pm

Good question. I believe there is a difference, but the lines blur.

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Postby Wd40 » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 6:42 pm

Some of my all time favs:

The Apprentice
Street hawk
Knight rider
American choppers
Pimp my ride
Small wonder (most fav :) )
Suze Orman show
Last edited by Wd40 on Wed, 05 Dec 2012 6:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby Wd40 » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 6:50 pm

My fav British are:
Mr Bean
Mind your language :)

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Postby taxico » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 7:07 pm

it's always sunny in philly
curb your enthusiasm
arrested development
seinfeld

the shield

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Postby nakatago » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 7:27 pm

taxico wrote:it's always sunny in philly
curb your enthusiasm
arrested development
seinfeld

the shield


Speaking of which, Arrested Development WILL be coming back next year. That's after a six-year hiatus.

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Postby taxico » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 7:32 pm

nakatago wrote:
taxico wrote:it's always sunny in philly
curb your enthusiasm
arrested development
seinfeld

the shield


Speaking of which, Arrested Development WILL be coming back next year. That's after a six-year hiatus.


this means it will be in singapore in 2015... i can't wait (literally).

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Postby Brah » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 7:36 pm

Treme
The Wire
Louie
Boss
30 Rock
Mad Men
Weeds
Breaking Bad
SoA
Boston Legal
...it's a long list

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Postby JR8 » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 7:39 pm

taxico wrote:curb your enthusiasm


Taxi, this is the only one of your list I've had time to properly watch, and I think it's really good. Not many US shows contain ironic humour that works for a UK audience, the above is IMHO a solid exception.


* They say that for Americans the humour works if it is good. But for Brits the humour is in being presented with 90% of the joke, and figuring out the final 10% for oneself. Or, the more you are left to figure out yourself, the better you will find the humour IF you do get it (there must be some strange subliminal and self-congratulatory psychology to this!). Sorry, that's terribly simplistic, and certainly not dissing American comedy!...

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Postby offshoreoildude » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 9:43 pm

Homeland is the only one I am watching right now. I gave up on The Walking Dead 2 shows into season 3 and I'm just about had it with Big Bang.
Now I'm called PNGMK

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Postby Brah » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 9:45 pm

Not sure who "they" are, but over my many years overseas I can't count how many times I've heard how American humor is slapstick, lacks wit, irony, subtlety, etc.

With long running shows like Three's Company being broadcast far and wide and I can't think of a non-80s analogy right now since I don't watch that dreck either, I guess I can't blame non-Americans for having that view.

There never has been a shortage of witty, deadpan, cerebral, ironic American humor, going way back to Groucho to Woody Allen to Steven Wright to a whole lotta others.

If you like Curb Your Enthusiasm there's more where that came from.

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Postby JR8 » Wed, 05 Dec 2012 11:34 pm

Brah wrote:Not sure who "they" are,

> Ok hands up, it's me ;) [/jk]

but over my many years overseas I can't count how many times I've heard how American humor is slapstick, lacks wit, irony, subtlety, etc.

With long running shows like Three's Company being broadcast far and wide and I can't think of a non-80s analogy right now since I don't watch that dreck either, I guess I can't blame non-Americans for having that view.

> Unfortunately I can't say I've watched it.

There never has been a shortage of witty, deadpan, cerebral, ironic American humor, going way back to Groucho to Woody Allen to Steven Wright to a whole lotta others.

Yep you're probably right with Marx (though one could perhaps make a case for them being silent films, plus rather slapsticky). Woody Allen... mmm well, 'yes but', rightly or wrongly I perceive him as being somewhat higher-brow rather than mass-market. Steven Wright... /dk, but I will look into him more.


If you like Curb Your Enthusiasm there's more where that came from.

It's good to know, and I look forward to unearthing it in due course. To me something like Seinfeld is just lame 'dreck' (borrowing your word if I may). I just can't see humour in it, I find Cheers funnier, or Drew Carey, or just about anything. To me, Seinfeld is considered funny because so many people expect to find him that way. But I just scratch my head...

How about a Celebrity comedy-death-match, Jerry Seinfeld vs Spike Milligan?



Go Spike!
8-) :wink:

---------------------
Comedian Spike Milligan was the author of the world's funniest joke, a psychology professor has claimed.
'Professor Wiseman said the joke contained all three elements of what makes a good gag - anxiety, a feeling of superiority, and an element of surprise.'
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/5064020.stm
---------------------

And the joke....

'A couple of New Jersey hunters are out in the woods when one of them falls to the ground. He doesn't seem to be breathing, his eyes are rolled back in his head. The other guy whips out his cell phone and calls the emergency services. He gasps to the operator: "My friend is dead! What can I do?" The operator, in a calm soothing voice says: "Just take it easy. I can help. First, let's make sure he's dead." There is a silence, then a shot is heard. The guy's voice comes back on the line. He says: "OK, now what?"'
---------------------------


Ok, gimme your best Seinfeld one...

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Postby nakatago » Thu, 06 Dec 2012 9:24 am

offshoreoildude wrote:Homeland is the only one I am watching right now.


What cellphones are they using? Because I want that kind of battery life and reception. :wink:

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Postby Brah » Thu, 06 Dec 2012 4:41 pm

Brah wrote:> Ok hands up, it's me ;) [/jk]
trust me, I've heard it so many times, it's one of those Top Ten Things People Say When There's An American Minority In the Conversation, right up there with American Football is for pussies because they wear helmets / padding, or ....is boring for all the stopping and starting. If I had a nickel for every......
but over my many years overseas I can't count how many times I've heard how American humor is slapstick, lacks wit, irony, subtlety, etc.

With long running shows like Three's Company being broadcast far and wide and I can't think of a non-80s analogy right now since I don't watch that dreck either, I guess I can't blame non-Americans for having that view.
> Unfortunately I can't say I've watched it.
No, you are in fact very fortunate. And it was a bad example of a bad example. And there is no shortage of Very Bad American Comedy shows. Anyone care to list other, more recent ones?

There never has been a shortage of witty, deadpan, cerebral, ironic American humor, going way back to Groucho to Woody Allen to Steven Wright to a whole lotta others.
I somehow left out the key one, sarcastic

Yep you're probably right with Marx (though one could perhaps make a case for them being silent films, plus rather slapsticky). Woody Allen... mmm well, 'yes but', rightly or wrongly I perceive him as being somewhat higher-brow rather than mass-market. Steven Wright... /dk, but I will look into him more.

I think you're confusing The Marx Brothers with Chaplin, they didn't really do silent movies, or at least I never saw one. While they had funny slapstick vignettes, Harpo usually silent while Chico egged him on, I'm referring to Groucho's laser-fast sarcastic wit, much like his contemporary Mark Twain.

And you're right - Woody is more highbrow, and therein may lie the difference - perhaps there is more mainstream dumbwit American comedy compared with counterparts in the UK. The sarcasm and intellect is not found there whereas it may be found more easily and more often in UK shows. By definition mainstream = more shows = watered-down for the masses. It's these unfortunately which define American humor for outsiders.


If you like Curb Your Enthusiasm there's more where that came from.
It's good to know, and I look forward to unearthing it in due course. To me something like Seinfeld is just lame 'dreck' (borrowing your word if I may). I just can't see humour in it, I find Cheers funnier, or Drew Carey, or just about anything. To me, Seinfeld is considered funny because so many people expect to find him that way. But I just scratch my head...
Cheers was funny, and quite so, for its time, as was Taxi, and while there were a few moments of sharp wit, mostly back-and-forth comedy jabs by the likes of Danny De Vito and Kelsey Grammar that made them funny, the rest was more entertainment and short storyline. They were feel-good stuff to watch at the end of the workday, and even now if I hear one of those show's theme music, it takes me back to a warm and welcome place.

How about a Celebrity comedy-death-match, Jerry Seinfeld vs Spike Milligan? Go Spike! 8-) :wink:
I think this would be Apples and Oranges.

I like Seinfeld the show more for entertainment than comedy; as as a comic he used to be hot and cold funny/not so funny, I wouldn't include him in a list of sarcastic, witty or cerebral American comedians.

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Postby JR8 » Thu, 06 Dec 2012 10:41 pm

trust me, I've heard it so many times, it's one of those Top Ten Things People Say When There's An American Minority In the Conversation, right up there with American Football is for pussies because they wear helmets / padding, or ....is boring for all the stopping and starting. If I had a nickel for every......

Yeah, American Football is for pussies :-). Can you think of another field sport where they wear crash helmets, play with a mattress worth of padding under their kit, and have time-outs every few minutes so the players can recover from carrying around all that protection? Even badminton is more dangerous than gridiron.

No, you are in fact very fortunate. And it was a bad example of a bad example. And there is no shortage of Very Bad American Comedy shows. Anyone care to list other, more recent ones?



Can't help you there, in fact these days I simply don't watch TV any more. But there certainly are good US shows... just we don't get them here!



I think you're confusing The Marx Brothers with Chaplin,

Nah, Chaplin was British, hence funny ;-) More seriously I equate the Marx Brothers with the 20s/30s, the era of Buster Keaton, and I thought that was before speech in films...

they didn't really do silent movies, or at least I never saw one. While they had funny slapstick vignettes, Harpo usually silent while Chico egged him on, I'm referring to Groucho's laser-fast sarcastic wit, much like his contemporary Mark Twain.

But was the 'laser-fast humour' off the script, or impro? An interesting mention of Mark Twain... I'd thought of him solely as an author.

And you're right - Woody is more highbrow, and therein may lie the difference - perhaps there is more mainstream dumbwit American comedy compared with counterparts in the UK.

I wouldn't use those words and I don't think it applies. I'd look for a reason, like most US TV being commercial (do PBS in the US commission any comedy?). Plus, needing to appeal to a broader audience, which I think by definition - as with music, art, food, etc - means it loses 'edge'.

The sarcasm and intellect is not found there whereas it may be found more easily and more often in UK shows.

I'm not sure about 'intellect', just I think the UK is socially/culturally more mature than the US. Not a criticism BTW, in fact arguably the opposite. But, that said, a lot of British comedy is a product of Cambridge University and alumni thereof. I was going to say 'Imagine if much quality US comedy derived from Ivy Leagers', but university in the UK and US are totally different endeavors and a separate topic!

By definition mainstream = more shows = watered-down for the masses. It's these unfortunately which define American humor for outsiders.

OMG... deja vu hehehe!!!

Cheers was funny, and quite so, for its time, as was Taxi, and while there were a few moments of sharp wit, mostly back-and-forth comedy jabs by the likes of Danny De Vito and Kelsey Grammar that made them funny, the rest was more entertainment and short storyline. They were feel-good stuff to watch at the end of the workday, and even now if I hear one of those show's theme music, it takes me back to a warm and welcome place.

Yep, I hear what you say!


I like Seinfeld the show more for entertainment than comedy; as as a comic he used to be hot and cold funny/not so funny, I wouldn't include him in a list of sarcastic, witty or cerebral American comedians.
[/quote][/quote]

Well I don't know [scratched head]. I'd at least hope a comedian is witty...

p.s. Anyway, Vive le difference eh? :)


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