Good TV is just so satisfying

I have been dying to test out Six Feet Under and Dexter for some months now but I couldn’t bring myself to buy the box sets because they were just so freakin’ expensive and I wasn’t even sure if I would enjoy the series.  Lucky for me, my regular DVD supplier managed to get me the first seasons to test out.  And gah! i can’t believe what great TV I’ve been missing out on.

Six Feet Under

Okay, death is morbid, right? So who would want to watch 6 seasons of a show where a death and funeral is featured in every, single episode?  Well, now I know I do.  The series is set in a family funeral home and revolves around the lives of the Fisher family.  This bunch of characters are complex and eclectic and pure fun to watch.  You have the dad who dies in the first episode of the first season but his ghost keeps reappearing to have conversations with the rest of the family, the rebel older brother who is uncomfortable talking about death even though he grew up in a funeral home, the homosexual younger brother who is having a hard time coming out of the closet, the neglected younger sister who dabbles with drugs and dangerous boyfriends and of course, you have the mom who has spent her entire life keeping house and raising the kids and is now feeling guilty about her husband’s death because she has been sleeping with her hairdresser.  The last time I had such an enjoyable time with a dysfunctional family was during Arrested Development.  But unlike Arrested Development, this series is deeper and way more depressing.  The show tackles death with black humour and often moving truth.  And like the Fisher family, you too start to look at life and death quite differently.

Dexter

Dexter is unlike any drama I’ve watched – it’s sick, twisted yet some parts just make me smile.  Dexter works as a blood splatter analyst for the Miami Metro Police by day and is a cold-blooded serial killer by night.  The show makes a clever study of human nature.  Orphaned at 3, Dexter was adopted by a Miami police officer who recognised his sociopathic tendencies and taught him to channel his gruesome passion for killing in a constructive way – by killing those who have slipped through the justice system.  Although Dexter feels no emotions and his desire to kill is unflinching, he has been taught to fake his emotions and come across as a socially responsible human being.  We never stop to think about it but we all pretend to be “normal” all the time – making small talk, pretending to care, pretending that everything is okay.  No wonder when serial killers are caught, neighbours and friends are often surprised because well …. you know, he seemed so normal.  Who would have thought that a show would have me rooting for a serial killer episode after episode, hoping that he doesn’t ever get caught.  Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?  We all know that calculated, cold-blooded murder is wrong but why does it seem okay when we think the person deserves to die?  I must admit that it took me a few episodes to warm up to Dexter but once started, I just couldn’t stop.  Worse part is, now that I’m on the edge of my seat, I realise that I don’t have the final 3 episodes to Season 1.  Crap.

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