Most of the shows I watch are shows I like that I own (DVDs) or streaming shows. Some of it is because of the limited number of western shows on Japanese TV; some shows are Japanese shows that English speaking audiences probably haven’t heard of; some of it is frankly, time. I can’t watch TV everyday between work and family. I’d rather read or write in the down time I have. So shows tend to be binge-watch affairs on vacations (or home with a cold). Most are SF or mysteries. I’ve recently started watching Killjoys, which I enjoy. And Orphan Black is now fully available on worldwide Netflix so I can watch the run. And I have to watch The Crown so my mother and I can compare historical notes.
So, I decided to write this post about shows (other than Star Trek) that I have binge-watched over and over through the years because they are special to me. When I’m feeling depressed or sick with the flu, these are the shows that are my tv medicine.
I love Blake’s 7. I don’t think there is a version available for US region; but I have a multi-season DVD and its not hard to find online anyway. Blake’s 7 follows freedom fighter Roj Blake and his fight against the Federation. He is arrested, sent to a prison planet, but gains a crew of criminals-who commandeer an alien ship known as the Liberator. His crew includes computer expert Kerr Avon, professional thief Villa Restal, strongman Olag Gan, pirate captain Jenna Stannis, the ship’s AI Zen. Later on we get Cally, a telepath the series we get Orac, a brilliant computer mind. In later seasons we have new crew members Tarrant, Dayna, and Soolin. And their adversary Servalan. It’s about political system, oppression, freedom, independence, social control etc. All those juicy political themes. And it doesn’t try to be optimistic either. I have watched the whole series several times and I purchased many of the audio shows via Big Finish Audio.
Peaky Blinders. Thomas Shelby is a bad man. The Peaky Blinders are bad people. But I can’t help watching every episode of that show. Set in Birmingham after WWI it’s just fantastic. The only gangster show I ever really found interesting. And there’s going to be a SERIES 5!!!! On a gathering storm comes/ a tall handsome man/In a dusty black coat with/ a red right hand…..
X-Files. The X-files was one of the first shows outside of Star Trek that I was really a fan of. I watched it faithfully from episode one’s broadcast until the end. Even after Scully and Mulder were gone. I even watched the Lone Gunmen spin-off and Millennium. Even after the weird second movie. And I have watched X-files 2018. X-files is just a part of my life at this point, and I have to accept it.
Alien Nation. I go through bouts where I have to watch Alien Nation again. I have to sit through Buck’ growing pains and George’s pregnancy and Sikes and Cathy’s relationship. It’s still a good show, that I always enjoy and I’ve discussed it before.
Are you Being Served? This is a comedy classic. Set in the fictional Grace Brothers Department store. I started watching this show late at nights on public broadcasting. ( Along with Fawlty Towers) There are a few episodes I’ve missed, but I’ve seen all the most popular ones down through the years. We didn’t have cable.( My father felt that television was not worth paying for.) Mrs. Slocombe. Ms. Brahms, Mr. Humphries, Captain Peacock, Mr. Lucas, Mr. Rumbold, Young Mister Grace.
Mr. Humphries are you free?
Yes Minister and Yes, Prime Minister. Basically, political satire and it is brilliant. With a rather small cast, and never big sets, the dialogue alone is masterful. Hacker, and MP who later becomes Prime Minister and Sir Humphrey Appleby, his permanent secretary. There aren’t many episodes, but they are well worth it.