Wednesday, April 26, 2006

On Fighting Evil with the Power of Science, Part Two

Just as a quick disclaimer on the previous post, where I have dedicated several paragraphs to moaning about a DVD menu interface, to paraphrase something I have read elsewhere (but forget where), I would like to remind everyone that I draw comics and write about science fiction on the internet. Please note that in reading this it is entirely possible you will achieve a state of nerdvana.

Before we continue, just as a last word on 24, the most recent series I've watched is the third, which I get the impression is generally thought of as the weakest one, a view I absolutely disagree with. I think it's a fantastic example of the way good people can be brought down by ill-advised actions.

Through the course of the series, and in different ways, Jack Bauer and David Palmer have been broken, and in an interesting twist on what you'd expect in an American action drama, neither have been made stronger by the end (although Jack, of course, Gets The Job Done). In significant ways, every single main and supporting character has failed, and I found this fascinating.

Also, you have to give credit to the structure of the series. I remember hearing a lot of comments along the lines of bioterrorism being the next obvious thing for the creators to do (which it was, of course), but the way it was done was very different to the previous 2 series, whose structure was largely identical. Just as you think the plot is going one way, it heads off in another, with the middle third of the series far different to what I expected.

So, CSI. In order of preference, CSI: NY, CSI: Original Flavour and CSI: Miami. This is mostly due to the fact that the cast is stronger and of all the Who theme tunes the different series use Baba O'Riley is the best. The one name I really didn't expect to see pop up on the credits was Danny Cannon's, better known (to me, anyway) as the man behind the abysmally awful Judge Dredd movie. The best story about him I know is that about fifteen years before directing it, he had a poster published in a 2000AD competition on the theme of a hypothetical Judge Dredd film.

The thing that strikes me most about CSI is the way every episode is (largely) stand-alone, useful to me as I've missed years worth of stuff. Which is interesting, as I'm usually drawn to programmes with a strong unifying overall story. The problem with these kind of programmes, by their nature, means its difficult to come in halfway through.

Why have I spent so long on a non-SF programme on a largely SF journal? Well, dear reader; it's because CSI is science fiction.

Criticisms of the show boil down to two things: that the Science bits happen in the course of hours rather than the weeks it takes in Real Life, and that CSI technicians question suspects and make arrests in ways that are actually handled by the regular police. Either of these things can be explained by a) CSI is set in the near future, or b) CSI is set on a parallel world. Hey presto. Skiffy.


Post a Comment

<< Home