As recounted here in previous episodes, I LIKE movies and TV.
Also recounted, I don’t always access current stuff, i.e I didn’t watch Star Trek (TOS) in prime time; the mini-series John Adams until years after the fact.
So it was with The Wire. Dave (the mechanic) recommended it highly. I don’t think I had HBO when it was first broadcast…
We found ourselves ‘between seasons’ on regular, commercial television. And had been re-running shows we liked (ranging from Friends to Person-of-Interest) until we started mumbling the dialog under our breath.
Thank God for ‘The Hopper™’!
It was time for something new, to us at least.
And we remembered The Wire…
Five years, sixty episodes. Gritty inner city drama about the workings of the police, unions, organized crime and politics.
Sax and violins galore.
With no censor (it was HBO, after all)!
If I had $1 for every time I heard the word M…..F…..
Well, you get the idea.
Well cast and acted. A tight script which kept you guessing. Some good guys who were bad – some misguided. Some bad guys trying to be good. Others just evil.
The Internet tells us many of the background cast we actual people from the street. I’m certain this lowered production costs, but also added to the realism.
I recommend it. But make certain the children are asleep in their beds.
In another State.
Lest they listen and start repeating M…..F……
Or the ubiquitous ‘N’ word!
As I grew up doing magic (eventually becoming semi-pro in my teens), I know many secrets – even if I cannot perform them personally. 😛
And, sadly, knowledge kinda ruins watching other magicians! I’m looking for the gimmick, misdirection, the gaffe, the secret – other than just enjoying the performance for entertainment sake.
It takes an unusual talent to keep me interested in the actual performance.
I am also an AZDPS certified/NRA trained instructor. And have trained people professionally in safe gun-handling and proper techniques. I also shot in IPSC competition for a short time.
The point being, while I’m no big-time trainer/shooter, I have been around.
And, this has spoiled many TV shows and movies for me.
It’s hard for me to suspend my disbelief when I see a magician perform poorly (and not on purpose for comedy, ala Carl Balantine!)
The same thing applies to gun handling from Hollywood.
In recent memory, the TV show 24, with the counter-terrorist expert Jack Bauer (played by Kiefer Sutherland) holding his pistol as a cup-and-saucer. Obviously, the set firearms trainer didn’t bother, or the actor didn’t care!
To be fair, Hollywood has generally improved in this area – Michael Mann with Miami Vice and Heat brought in weapons experts. We don’t see the ‘grabbing the wrist’ thing as much as we once did.
I’ve been binge watching Bosch on Amazon. Based on Michael Connolly’s book character, the plots are generally riveting and well acted. And Titus Welliver as the lead is pretty good, as a driven, ‘colors-outside-the-lines’ LAPD detective.
But, they had a big parking lot gun fight last night (Season 2), and many of the ‘professionals’ (both mobsters and cops) confused concealment with cover, and kept doing the jack-in-the-box thing (jumping up from behind something to return fire).
Smile for the camera!
It kinda took the wind out of my sails…
I plan on continuing to watch it, and hope the acting and the plot hide the poor action sequences.
Also, the lead character wears two extra 1911 magazines – placed backwards in the mag pouch (about half the time), making tactical reloads problematic!
I know – picky, picky, picky
(NEWSER) – A civilian review panel tasked with investigating complaints against New York City cops has spotted a trend: NYPD officers knocking cellphones and other video recording devices out of the hands of concerned citizens. In a three-year analysis of complaints against city officers starting in 2014, the Civilian Complaint Review Board discovered 257 complaints that contained 346 allegations of officer interference with civilian recordings of police actions, LawNewz reports, citing a CCRB report. In addition to knocking devices out of civilians’ hands, those acts of interference included verbal directions to stop recording, obstructing sightlines, and threatening to arrest or detain civilians for recording police actions. All told, 46% of the complaints alleged physical interference.
It’s New York, so I cannot carry a weapon.
And the police can do as they please and interfere with lawful recording in public of questionable events.
Hardly the NYC police department as portrayed in Tom Selleck’s TV series Blue Bloods!
(Of course, Selleck is NOT the real police commissioner of NYC, either!)
Reminiscent of watching Air Force One, and seeing a President fight terrorists. Then leaving the theater feeling great, then remembering that the real President (at the time) was Bill Clinton!
Remember last year, and the celebrities just dropping like flies?
Well, it is continuing unto 2017!
And how sad is THAT? 😦
BILL PAXTON, who went from bit player to fifth lead, to third lead, to romantic lead (!) to character actor. (You KNOW how I love character actors!)
If you don’t follow Hollywood news, you will not have heard. But, he passed away from complications after heart surgery Saturday at age 61!
And from all reports was a funny, decent, kind man. (Sometimes, when these Hollywood folks go away, little is said about their character. Because they are @$$holes. Obviously, not in this case.) He was married 30 years, and had two children. Hardly stereotypical Hollywood.
Stripes, The Terminator, Weird Science, Aliens, Miami Vice (TV), Navy Seals, Tombstone, True Lies, Twister, Apollo 13, Titanic, Big Love (TV), Hatfields & McCoys (TV), Training Day (TV) – just to name a few.
Word is the remaining episodes of Training Day are ‘in the can’ and will be shown. Sadly, even if he had survived, word is also it would probably not have been renewed for a second season.
RIP, Bill. You
will be are missed!
(It’s said it comes in threes. Guess it all depends on when one begins counting, and what the criterion are…)
You all know me and my love of character actors. Mr. Polito first appeared on my radar in the wonderful 80’s TV show Crime Story, as a third lead mobster versus Dennis Farina and his major crimes crew. (Any resemblance of the show’s character to Sam Giancana was purely coincidental, I’m sure…)
Later, it was Miller’s Crossing, Homicide: Life On The Street, Barton Fink, The X Files and many other shows and films.
Almost always playing some flavor of wiseguy. Oh, he played in THAT, too! He played cops, too (as mob-cast guys often do!)
Turned out he was distantly related to a friend of mine here locally with the same last name! I’m sorry for your loss.
Your gruff voice and persona will certainly be missed!
I’ve often written regarding the windshield time and shoe leather expended during my tenure as a private investigator. This is definitely a shoe leather story.
One of the items TV cop and PI shows do not expand upon is the time expended. Especially if the investigation in is the pre-Internet era. Of course, even in today’s CSI-oriented procedural shows, time remains a factor. Collect fluids for the lab – DNA results back after the commercial. Easy-peasy.
In the real world it’s like a minimum of six weeks. Would definitely put a damper on the 44 minute long hour show!
So, here I am, in the Fall, in N.W. Phoenix. Not the oppressive heat of July, but not January, either. Canvassing a neighborhood. On foot.
Three, four fairly long neighborhood streets. Middle-income, mixed ethnicity, probably 3/4 White. (IOW, NOT the ghetto, the barrio or the projects). THANK YOU GOD!
Regardless, still laborious. Lots of walking. Keeping track of each household by address. By name if possible. Returning to empty homes to try to catch folks who had returned. Or get a name off the mailbox (or the mail) for a telephone call later.
All because at the end of one of the blocks, one neighbor’s dog (German shepherd, pit bull, I don’t remember) had broken through the horizontal-wood fence separating the yards and attacked neighborhood kids, seriously injuring one.
Did anyone witness the attack? Or the aftermath? Or someone taunting the dog? Do you know any witnesses with whom I could speak?
As if most of the neighbors were in one or the other of the fenced back yards…
Due diligence was still necessary.
I walked and walked. Knocked on a lot of doors. Rang a lot of doorbells. Received little information. From this procedure (which took two afternoons and two evenings, by myself) or the follow-up telephone calls.
I remember one household. Across the street from the feuding neighbors. Had Mexican immigrants therein, all of whom had to fill the doorway when the person answering announced (to no one in particular) INVESTIGATOR! (een-ves-ti-ga-tor’). Little English and even less information.
Most folks knew bupkis. Some has their own opinions and theories – even if they hadn’t know of the event before I spoke with them! Others offered information on other torts, crimes, events and neighbors.
As if I cared.
Eventually, I gathered up the big collection of negative data and coalesced it into a big report, signifying nothing.
I’m certain the lawsuit was eventually settled between the various homeowner’s insurances involved. And their attorneys.
And my boss got a cut of one attorney’s fees. I got my usually hourly wage, sore feet and worn-out shoes. Pretty sure I didn’t make enough for a new pair, or even resoling.
Ah! The thrilling life of a private investigator. 🙂
So, a guy walks up to a sentry and asks, “Hi, sentry, new in town?”
Back-in-the-day, when I was young and foolish (I’m not so young, anymore) I used to read Soldier Of Fortune magazine. (In addition to Shotgun News, Guns & Ammo, Shooting Times, Guns Magazine and pretty much every firearms periodical I could find!) This was before they were sued for facilitating a hitman in their classifieds, and LTC Robert Brown (founder and publisher – U.S.Army-Retired) reportedly discharged a 1911 underwater at a Scottsdale resort pool. Just to see if it would function. Rumor was some alcohol was involved.
For me, being unable to get into the military, I was, as Brown described it, truly an armchair adventurer.
And, unlike Playboy’s centerfold (that used to be nude women – sigh), SOF had a centerfold with a different focus. Sentry removal.
I’m certain Michael Echanis, premier martial arts editor, had something to do with the content.
It would illustrate techniques like the Turkish twist, and judiciously-lethal dagger placement, as though all the readership had been to the CIA’s ‘Farm’ or Ranger School.
Like we were all spec-ops assassins just aching to ‘take out a sentry’, silently.
Of course, we weren’t, but enjoyed reading such macho fodder, nevertheless.
And we’d do the joke about ‘taking out’ sentries whenever a new issue arrived on the newsstand.
And absorb tales of mercenaries world-wide, new gun reviews, read about the latest in electronic surveillance gear, U.S. and foreign military actions and macho TV and movies.
Mike Echanis died in a plane crash en route training in Central America. And more lawsuits continued.
April 2016 was the last paper edition of SOF. It continues to be available online.
I’ve not read it regularly for some years. For me, just getting out of the armchair requires effort enough. Forget adventure or sentries.
I’ve gotten used to seeing political correctness on TV. Not that I like it, but have come to the realization that most of the TV show writers, producers and networks foster an agenda. Nowhere near that of a constitutional republic.
And many times, it’s not based in fact – it’s based on what is perceived as popular and liberal.
An aside on a sitcom about the prevalence of global warming; the presence of a gun – in and of itself – shown as evil and dangerous. The whole BLM agenda, as well.
But, occasionally, some differing opinions slip through the cracks!
Last Man Standing – a sitcom with Tim Allen as a beleaguered conservative business owner, surrounded by liberals and mostly conservative females. Making statements against The President’s policies and Secretary Clinton’s lack-of-action about Benghazi. And, still remaining a comedy!
Blue Bloods – a Tom Selleck (a Gunsite graduate) cop family vehicle including Catholicism, proper gun handling instruction, and the difficult balancing of policing with civil liberties. Tom plays the current police commissioner.
Criminal Minds – The FBI against serial killers, with Joe Mantegna (another Gunsite graduate) showing off many his many skills.
Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders – Another FBI vehicle, this time offshore, with Gary Sinise (a champion for the American Veteran). In a recent episode, they helped capture a duo of American mass murderers in Cuba (!) Sinise gave a passionate spiel about the Communist propaganda prevalent on our college campuses, and the ubiquitiousness of that vile t-shirt celebrating a murdering bigot Che’!
So, there IS hope…
Sadly, watching Blue Bloods, with Mr. Selleck as the Police Commissioner, I’m reminded of watching the movie Air Force One (in the 80’s), wherein Harrison Ford plays a President who had been a Green Beret (I remember). He stands up to terrorists and kicks a**!
I left the theater feeling good. Until I remembered Bill Clinton was (then) the actual President!
And the current P.C. of NYC is no Tom Selleck! 😦
The brilliant and beautiful Tamara posted recently the dearth of correct tactics and technique with regard to television shows and weapon technique.
She, of course, is correct.
I’ve posted in these pages regarding the same stuff – the guy in the show 24, for example. Cup-and-saucer does not Weaver or Isosceles make…
But these martial faux pas go back decades.
The Untouchables, M Squad, The Detectives, The FBI (in color!) And don’t even bring up the spy genre – The Man From UNCLE (for example). And the movies! James Bond to Dirty Harry…
And thousands of other TV shows and films.
Weapon technique is terrible! Cup-and-saucer. Or worse yet, grabbing one’s wrist with the off hand. Or supporting the shooting arm with the other under the forearm!
Shooting rifles and submachine guns from the hip! Because it looks cool…
And the gun hand up next to the face. Because it frames our hero with a gun next to their face, NOT because it’s a good idea!
And the ubiquitous fingers on triggers!
And many of us (mostly male) took their initial learning ques from these ‘techniques’. This is why women are generally better students. They don’t have to unlearn as much.
We do need to be reminded that these media are for entertainment, and are not documentaries or training aids, however.
But sometimes some of these Hollywood presentations are just too ludicrous to be able to suspend disbelief and enjoy. Remember T.J. Hooker?
Having been a semi-professional magician in my youth, I’ve had much the same reaction to watching magicians on television. Either I know the secret (or know something) and the performance loses it’s entertainment value.
And certainly more disturbing!
Long-time readers of my blog may recall my mentioning the television show Chicago PD, wherein the fictional detectives of the CPD Intelligence Squad sometimes sequester persons they have
arrested detained kidnapped and subject them to torture to obtain information to convict them, and/or locate other crimes/criminals.
Certainly not in accordance with current civilian criminal law procedures. Do we remember Escobedo? Miranda?
I pooh-poohed the program, another in the long list of shows from the Law & Order producers, as highly fictionalized.
Then comes this news…
Yesterday (March 1, 2015), ABC7 Chicago released a fact sheet from the Chicago Police Department on the Homan Square facility. There have been recent claims that the police department is operating a “secretive facility in Homan Square on Chicago’s West Side where criminal suspects are denied basic rights.” The Chicago Police Department is denying any alleged abuse of suspects, saying the lack of signage on the building is because Homan Square is the “base of operations for officers working undercover assignments.”Source: http://www.glennbeck.com/2015/03/02/secret-facility-in-chicago-where-criminals-are-being-tortured-without-due-process/?utm_source=glennbeck&utm_medium=contentcopy_link