At this time of year, thoughts tend to drift towards The Ultimate Christmas Gift.
This blog promotes the presentation of a Box Set. It’s more than a gift – it’s a lifestyle, a way to say ‘I love you’, something to place upon the shelves, an item to quieten a talkative friend/relative/lover if they are getting on your nerves over the Aussie summer. Or Northern Hemisphere winter. Hours of viewing pleasure in a slim plastic cover while you’re sipping some beer (us) snogging some brandy (north) or chugging on eggnog (in between)
Our television stations hibernate in the heat of Dec-Feb period. Perhaps you have been enjoying Glee or Flash Forward? The distressing news is that they get pulled for the Christmas holidays, stuffed with turkey and fattened up for new year. The problem arises when the Australian nights are long and hot (much like some people!) and bed just compounds the length and the heat -
To cut a very convoluted entry short, I’d like to recommend FIVE box sets that you could purchase online and give to loved ones this festive season. You don’t even have to go to a shop, which is a huge bonus from where I’m sitting.
These are in no particular order. Adult warnings do apply to some but who doesn’t love a bit of swearing, sex and full frontal nudity with their left-over rum balls?
1. Six Feet Under: I’m extremely biased where this show is concerned. It’s my very favourite and you must buy all five seasons and watch them until your eyes fall out of your head. It’s a difficult programme at times. It’s raw and confronting, dealing with each and every aspect of grief. A couple of friends I’ve recced this to couldn’t ‘like’ the characters as much as they wanted to – and it’s true. They err and their flaws colour the story to its completion. Amazing television. Controversial and complete. Buy it NOW.
2. Mad Men: This is my latest obsession. If I could, I would morph into the Mad Men set, change my hairstyle to a red French knotty thing and smoke like a chimney. I’d sing with Sinatra or watch unusual art presentations out of Manhatten and inhale incense while listening to Peter, Paul and Mary. This show is an absolute masterpiece. It’s stunning and beautifully shot. The entire cast resonate from 1960 into your home. It is my aim to introduce the entire family to Mad Men before the Christmas season is over (and we are only at the end of season 1) There are 3 full seasons and more being made!
3. Dexter: Dexter, Dexter, Dexter. How I love you. The basic premise of this show is (in the words of my Sydney mate, Sarah) so ‘out of the box’, you can only sit back for the ride. It’s almost impossible not to fall in love with Dexter (serial killer) Morgan, his sister Deb and the gang at the Miami PD. Season 4 is almost finished in The States, so only the box sets of Season 1-3 are available to purchase at this stage. This is a violent show, but the layers of morality, character dynamics and family make it easy to almost ‘ignore’ the blood and focus on story telling. Wonderful stuff, but adult warning applies to this one and Six Feet Under.
4. The Sopranos: Chatting to a lady about Tony & Co. at school the other day, she said ‘the mafia thing really puts me off watching The Sopranos.’ I totally agreed with her. The idea of sitting through six seasons of Godfather-like tv didn’t appeal until I was encouraged to watch it. The Sopranos is riveting viewing. Again, its strength is gained through story telling. The characters involve the viewer (and they evolve) and the standard of acting is supreme. The big ‘themes’ are dealt with – ethics, family, religion, crime. Fabulous television, with a language warning as well.
So why put up with free-to-air television that never runs to time, reeks with advertising and is about as fresh as last year’s plum pud? I hope the five ideas have helped to inspire some creatively fun small-screen viewing over the silly season. Don’t sit too close to the screen! You’ll get square eyes!