It's summer and while there's a fair share of period dramas, hit and miss comedies and more reality fodder on telly, here are some of the other shows I've been watching lately.
Orange Is The New Black: Netflix have been streaming this since the second week of July and I decided to give in and see what the fuss was about. Having watched the first two episodes, I can easily say it's certainly a charming show. Taylor Schilling is pretty good as the put upon Piper coping with being in a prison with the same woman who caused her downfall (though they've barely interacted so far). The flashbacks detailing Piper's relationships with both Alex and Larry and volatile Russian cook's Red's own flashbacks have been fun to watch. It might not be one of the most innovative shows you'll ever see but it's certainly worth a gander.
Orphan Black: Another show that's been hyped for quite some time, I also decided to throw caution to the wind and watch the first two episodes. Truthfully, I am so glad I did because this show is every bit as good as people on my respective feeds have been saying it is. Tatiana Maslany is a revelation as Sarah and Alison and Katja and Beth and Cosima and probably every other clone she'll play in the remaining eight episodes of the first season. I'm seriously fighting the urge to gorge on the entire season in one sitting (instead I'll watch two episodes a week). It really is that good. If you haven't seen it, do. You won't regret it.
Skins: I've got to be honest - I've never been the biggest fan of Cook. In fact, I'd probably go as far to say that along with Freddie, he was my least favourite character from the second generation, so the idea of a two part story with him filled me with dread. However given that both Effy and Cassie's episodes were seriously lacking, I was impressed with how well Rise was by comparison. Granted, it was cliched to the hilt with Cook falling foul of an unconvincing drug dealer, Louis but it was better acted and quite atmospheric in parts. Perhaps not the most satisfying way of ending this series after seven years but certainly better than I expected it to be.
The Americans: I've said it in previous blogs but I'll say it one more time - I don't think this show belongs on ITV, especially not on a Saturday night. It's a shame really because every episode has gotten so much better, especially with the further examinations of what makes Elizabeth tick and the lengths Philip himself will go to keep Martha on side, along with both Jennings complicated feelings for each other too. It's a great show with some truly excellent writing, not just with Philip and Elizabeth but also with Claudia, who still manages to be a pain in the ass and Stan, who has become rather endearing as well as a character. Looking forward to the last two episodes but if ITV have picked up this show's second season, they need to give it a better timeslot and air it closer to US transmission like Channel 4 have done with Homeland.
The Returned: The most hyped about show over the summer period came to a conclusion with a strong episode in my opinion. I know some people were unsatisfied that not everything was resolved but given that we've had plenty set up for next series (various characters taken by the Horde, the water rising, Adele's pregnancy, etc), I'm more than happy not to know everything for a little bit longer. This show isn't likely to run for six seasons like Lost and personally, I'm not ready to see this show go just yet. I'm also glad that Channel 4's risk in airing this has paid off for them tremendously. It's been a superb series to watch for the last eight weeks.
- Sandra Oh will be departing Grey's Anatomy at the end of it's upcoming tenth season.
- Lindsay Lohan will be guest starring in Eastbound & Down.
- Lauren Bacall will kiss Peter Griffin in an episode of Family Guy.
- Dreama Walker will be playing a mean teacher nemesis for Jess in New Girl.
- Ian Hart has a recurring role as a scientist in Agents Of SHIELD.
- Nick Jonas will play a computer hacker on Hawaii Five-0.
- Marc Cherry's Devious Maids has been renewed for a second season by Lifetime.
- Sky1 will air Glee's fifth season within seven days of it's FOX transmission.
- Teryl Rothery will play The Atom's love interest in Arrow's second season.
- Doug Jones will play a killer named Barrow in a 2014 episode of Teen Wolf.