Brain Dump: The Collection, Shots Fired, Switched at Birth

Vanessa Marano and Katie Leclerc in Switched at Birth

Time for a brain dump: scattered thoughts about random TV shows. These things made an impression lately. I was bored by high fashion, impressed by a gritty look at American policing, and sad to see an old favorite say goodbye.

The Collection

Mamie Gummer in The Collection
Mamie Gummer

The Collection is a new Amazon original about the French fashion industry. I heard good things about it. I tried to watch it. After about an hour and a half into it, I quit. I didn’t like any of the greedy, manipulative main characters, I don’t care anything about high fashion. I simply got bored with it.

Jenna Thiam, who I’d never heard of before, was the best thing going. Max Deacon as the young American photographer was interesting but not compelling, although I liked the photographs he took. I normally like Mamie Gummer and Frances de la Tour, but not in these parts.

Did you like it? Tell me why.

Shots Fired

Helen Hunt in Shots Fired
Helen Hunt

Shots Fired starring Sanaa Lathan and Stephan James continues to impress me. Both play compelling characters with superb skill. The episode that aired on April 12 had a scene that chilled me to the bone.

Helen Hunt as the state Governor and Richard Dreyfuss as rich businessman Arlan Cox were negotiating a deal to build a prison. They had agreed that it would operate at 85% capacity. Just as they were to sign the deal, Cox asked for 88% capacity. They didn’t mention how many people that would be, but it was clear that the businessman expected the Governor to simply instruct the police to supply that many more prisoners. Crime was irrelevant – warm bodies were all that mattered.

The prison system in the United States is broken, broken, broken. This is a series about police corruption, racism, and the misnamed justice system. The for-profit prison industry had to be mentioned. Seeing two white people negotiating the number of (presumably) people of color to be shut up behind bars carried a real punch to the gut.

Are you watching Shots Fired? What do you think of it?

Switched at Birth

Vanessa Marano and Katie Leclerc in Switched at Birth
Katie Leclerc and Vanessa Marano as the two who were switched at birth

Switched at Birth ended this week after 5 years. It was a great 5 years, with ample character growth and interesting story lines. The thing I appreciated most about the show was the number of actual deaf actors and the frequent use of American Sign Language. Some scenes had no spoken dialog at all – they were completely in sign language.

The final episode was warm and fuzzy, full of happy memories about the show’s run. I’ll miss Switched at Birth. Bravo to the writers and the cast, including Katie Leclerc, Vanessa Marano, Lea Thompson, D.W. Moffett, Lucas Grabeel, Constance Marie, Marlee Matlin, Sean Berdy, and Ryan Lane.

Have you been a fan of Switched at Birth for the last 5 years with me?

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