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Perry Mason - HBO


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  • 2 years later...

Finally some progress on this. Looks like Downey won't be in it, but Team Downey are producing it. Nic Pizzolatto doesn't seem to be mentioned attached to it either.

 

It'll be set in 1932 Los Angeles, with Matthew Rhys as Mason. Tatiana Maslany has also joined to star opposite him as Sister Alice, who appears to be a popular, powerful preacher.

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Never really watched the original show, but I’m fascinated by pulp authors from around that period, and how prolific they were, knocking out endless stories for magazines. No romanticised tortured writer bullshit. The creator of Perry Mason, Erle Stanley Gardner was one of those guys, just consistently putting the work in. This is a great quote from the man himself...

 

Quote

When asked why his heroes always defeated villains with the last bullet in their guns, Gardner answered, "At three cents a word, every time I say ‘Bang’ in the story I get three cents. If you think I'm going to finish the gun battle while my hero still has fifteen cents worth of unexploded ammunition in his gun, you're nuts".

 

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  • 6 months later...

UfBePMm.jpg

 

As well as Matthew Rhys and Tatiana Maslany, it's got John Lithgow, Chris Chalk, Juliet Rylance, Shea Whigham, Nate Corddry, Veronica Falcon, Andrew Howard, Jefferson Mays, Robert Patrick, Stephen Root, Gayle Rankin, Lili Taylor and Justin Kirk.

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  • 5 months later...
  • 1 month later...
On 13/04/2019 at 07:19, JohnC said:

Finally some progress on this. Looks like Downey won't be in it, but Team Downey are producing it. Nic Pizzolatto doesn't seem to be mentioned attached to it either.

 

It'll be set in 1932 Los Angeles, with Matthew Rhys as Mason. Tatiana Maslany has also joined to star opposite him as Sister Alice, who appears to be a popular, powerful preacher.

 

Perry Mason will sell no series before its time.

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I think this looks really good and is low key my most anticipated upcoming tv programme. Matthew Rhys was terrific in The Americans. 

 

 

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Looking forward to this! I'm sure it will be nothing at all like the Perry Mason that used to be on BBC1 on Saturday nights... which I loved, btw. But just the name recognition has me smiling.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Has anyone seen this yet?

 

Getting good reviews on IMDB, although one person said it's not representative of the books, but apparently well worth a watch. I'm interested in it mainly because of Matthew Rhys, think he is a great actor; quite rare for me to watch something based on a casting.

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5 hours ago, Pavey said:

Getting good reviews on IMDB,

 

Looking at some of the critics reviews and it isn't faring as well, getting plenty of 6/10 or 3* reviews. Mainly the complaints are that the production and performances are great (although don't gel together with some seeming from another show entirely) but that the overall plot lets things down a lot.

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How does the series work? Is each episode a separate case or is it stretched out over a series with a longer story arc? 

 

If it's the latter, then I'm not sure how it would fit into the original books which were really the epitome of "pulp fiction" where you could just pick up a book and didn't need to know anything before hand, which I guess would fit much closer to an older style of series television (and the original TV series) where you could just dip in and out of episodes.

 

The original books famously gave almost no background to Perry Mason, you didn't learn anything about his family life or his history, which I'm not sure really fits with modern television. 

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I enjoyed the first episode for sure. It's a bit of a shame it's tied itself to the Perry Mason character though in some ways, it feels as though it'll have a fairly predictable trajectory of him becoming the brilliant lawyer and all that. I think I'd prefer them giving this kind of hardboiled origin story treatment to Sam Spade or somebody like that 

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I found this a typical B-tier HBO series so far (‘gritty’ the point of being grimdark, exploitative, over-sexualised). Sort of like the sleazier end of Boardwalk Empire, with its expies of historical characters and green-screened oldy-timey backdrops. I’ll give the next episode a look, but I’m pretty much tired of the usual HBO crime drama template at this point.

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Second episode pretty good I thought. The inclusion of this customised zither maestro Washington Phillips' tune was a nice surprise too. 

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 22/06/2020 at 17:04, JohnC said:

It’s one story over 6 episodes. 

Seems to be 8 episodes according to wikipedia. I'm 4 in, so either 1/2 or 2/3 through, and its just fine. It has the big HBO miniseries budget and looks amazing but there's something lacking and not really holding my interest.

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I'm still watching because it feels like HBO does James Ellroy and I love the time period and Matthew Rhys. But it's so slow - I don't think the main story moved forward at all this week apart from one clue about police corruption.

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It’s weird in that it’s trying to be deep but just comes across as ephemeral as the characters are so barely drawn apart from Mason himself. The acting is great but they haven’t been given much to work with. I’m enjoying it though and you can see that it could be great, so hoping it gets a couple of series, mainly because I think Matthew Rhys is fantastic.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Finished this last night, and enjoyed it. We binged episodes 1 to 6 and watched the last 2 yesterday. It's defintely a binge watch show, as the pacing is pretty slow. But I loved the setting and characters.

 

Spoiler

I'm glad they've wrapped it up and hopefully they'll move on to a new case next series and not try and eek out another trial as the story felt well covered.

 

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I thought the last episode was really good and that it was a great series overall.

 

Spoiler

There was some nice misdirection and a good, ambiguous ending. One question I had - there's a bit when Lily Taylors character is getting stitches after the graveyard riot. Was the doctor using the same type of thread as was used on the baby? Suggesting a bigger conspiracy inside the religious group? Or was that more misdirection?

 

One bit I really loved was right at the end when the old theme music came in and mixed with the newer music. 

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I really liked this but I haven't read the books, so I'm interested in it purely as an HBO drama. Glad to see it was renewed as I thought the virus would've killed chances of a second series.

 

 

Spoiler

A sad fate for Emily but watching them putting the team together was fun. I'm looking forward to Mason & Street.

 

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