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By Roy Mathur, on 2020-07-24, at 17:27:55--17:58:38 BST, for Captain Roy's Rocket Radio Show, Listen

The Last Virus Diary Entry

Covid-19 is here for the forseable future, so screw it. I've been doing the Virus Diary since at least the beginning of March and I'm sick to the back teeth about talking about the same damn thing every week. Goodbye Virus Diary.

More Shows for the Wrong Reasons

Things haven't been great lately, but I can't and don't want to talk about that. So expect more shows with less depressing personal content, as a way of me not dealing with all this crap. Ahhh... escapism.

The Old Guard

Immortal mercenaries are led by Charlize Theron in this action-packed original premise, but with a formulaic plot that plays like a TV pilot. Incidentally, no, they are not vampires, which I can understand, because of how obvious a high concept that would have been? Nevertheless, a vampire A-Team? How cool is that?

After seeing Charlize kick arse with axes, swords, guns, and her bare hands in this film, Mad Max Fury Road, and others, I wish she'd been in more action movies earlier in her career. Also, is it me or is she turning into David Bowie? It's probably me.

Avenue 5

Red Dwarf-ish show about a space tourism entrepreneur and owner of the Avenue fleet of space cruise ships. A freak accident strands the crew and passengers far from home.

Regarding the humour, I think the dialogue is written zany funny over and above the jokes about space science. Those are already good enough to make me laugh. That discrepancy makes the show seem clunky, like it's trying too hard. The gross-out crude humour resembles The Orville in that it feels clumsy to me. That is a pity as I like science fiction comedy, and yet, even as a fan of this sub-genre, I still feel both these shows miss the mark. It just proves how difficult comedy writing is, given that I don't feel the same way about Red Dwarf or any Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy adaptation. If I was writing, I would heavily prune the scripts of both Avenue 5 and The Orville of irrelevant buffoonery.

Brave New World

Brave New World is a TV adaptation of Aldous Huxley's dystopic science fiction novel, which is itself perhaps influenced by other works.

In it, a young American escapes the Savage Lands of his birth to his parent's high-tech New London. His presence begins to shift the balance of the power within the highly stratified society. This version seems to slightly favour American individualism and competition over seemingly more inclusive political ideologies. I say slightly because our young American hero manages to thoughly louse things up.

It's not bad, but stylistically plays like Westworld without robots. I cannot see how this will last more than one season.


I've been boxseting BBC iPlayer documentaries.

I saw the Storyville films Inside the Lehman Brothers, Tiananmen: The People V the Party, United Skates (about dwindling African American skate nights) and The Trial of Ratko Mladic (the Serbian war criminal).

I also saw the excellent five part Once Upon a Time in Iraq, which for some pointless reason was narrated by Andy Serkis. He does a good job, but other than that old bullshit of having a celebrity attached so that you can hypnotise the investors into backing your production, I couldn't why you would spend the money. Maybe I'm wrong and he's involved creatively in some other way too, or wasn't expensive, but if that's not the case, then I hope documentaries stop shopping for celebrity voices.

I also caught up with the BBC's long-running current affairs series Panorama, including one entitled Britain's Cancer Crisis, which is about how Covid-19 mismanagement in the NHS has killed people awaiting life-saving treatment.

I'm digressing, all are great, though Storyville's Inside the Lehman Brothers, Tiananmen: The People V the Party, as well as the the series Once Upon a Time in Iraq really stand out.

Given my wish to escape lately, these documentaries are both absorbing enough to drown out the chaos outside, whilst still tethering me to the real world.