What greater excuse to indulge in binge TV can there be than winter weather? I took full advantage of the rain and cold temperatures over the weekend to finish watching the first series of American Horror Story and the seventh season of Dexter (I only had two episodes of this one left).
I approached American Horror Story with much trepidation. Horror is not my favourite genre and I'm not great with ghost stories. Or anything involving mirrors. Rather than investing in something I wasn't sure I was going to be able to watch, I borrowed the first disc from Quickflix and was immediately hooked. Although it features ghosts and lots of mirror action, I was okay. I think I was more involved in the psychodrama side of things - what do people's fears look like? what does a man see when he looks at a woman? who's real and what's imagined?
I watched the opening titles once and found them scarier than the show, so I skipped right past them after that first time. There's something about sepia photographs of wide eyed infants flashing in quick cut or melting that is spooky. Then I watched the feature on the DVD about the design of the opening title sequence with its wonderful font and discovered that the impact that the opening title sequence had had on me was exactly what they were aiming for.
Maybe the fact I had my knitting to distract me helped me not be too scared. I did watch the first episode in broad daylight, fully prepared to not go beyond that, but how can Jessica Lange be resisted? She's always terrific and plays slightly unhinged very well. And the good news is that I've nearly finished the cardigan I'm knitting for myself - I just need to do the neck and the sleeves. I hope the cardigan isn't prickly as a result of the context in which it was knitted.
Apart from watching TV, I'm reading a book about TV. It's by Alan Sepinwall and is called The Revolution was Televised. It's an examination of the change in television that started with prison drama "Oz", continued with "The Sopranos", "The Wire" through to "Breaking Bad". I've watched all of the shows discussed except for "The Shield", "Lost" and "Battlestar Galactica", the last of which has been on my list for a while. It's interesting to discover what seem to be "universal" responses to particular moments and characters. And I'm happy to have discovered that "Deadwood" did seem to be missing a fourth and final season. It wasn't just me.
What are you watching at the moment?