What is one to do with thoughts that are far too long for Twitter but not nearly long enough for a proper blog post? Why round them up and turn them into a fourth portmanteau post on television of course!
Thomas Dekker Needs to Graduate
Thomas Dekker desperately needs to graduate high school. It’s becoming a problem. In case you can’t quite place the youthful looking actor, here’s a refresher. He played the camcorder-wielding confidant of invincible cheerleader Hayden Panettiere’s Claire Bennett in season 1 of Heroes. He then took on the role of a teenage John Connor under the daunting protection of Lena Headey’s Sarah Connor and Summer Glau’s good terminator in The Sarah Connor Chronicles. When that was unjustly cancelled he finally managed a sojourn in college in Gregg Araki’s typically eccentric Kaboom! But then came a return to high school in The Secret Circle, which has been mercifully cancelled after one misfiring season during which it never threatened to equal let alone eclipse its sister show The Vampire Diaries. Dekker was actually pretty good as a warlock in The Secret Circle but his resume kept intruding into your subconscious and wrecking his plausibility as a high school student, even by the usual ridiculous Hollywood conventions. To reiterate, Thomas Dekker was in high school on TV in 2006. He was still in high school on TV in 2012… Thomas Dekker Needs to Graduate!
I’m not sure exactly when it happened but the three episodes of 90 minutes duration each format now seems to be BBC One’s preferred mode for prestige crime shows, as, following in the wake of Wallander and the all-conquering Sherlock, John Banville’s acclaimed Benjamin Black detective novels are being brought to the small screen with Gabriel Byrne cast as the titular Quirke. Quirke, the chief pathologist in the Dublin city morgue, starts investigating deaths in 1950s Dublin – in Banville’s imagining a place of smoky streets, damp alleys, bars with peat fires, and Georgian houses with sexual tension. Each episode sees Quirke investigate the death of an unfortunate on his mortuary slab. Bleak House screenwriter Andrew Davies will adapt ‘Christine Falls’ and ‘The Silver Swan,’ while The Seafarer playwright Conor McPherson tackles ‘Elegy for April.’ I haven’t read any of the Benjamin Black novels for two reasons. I find the patronising adoption of a pseudonym to write mere thrillers to epitomise the Nietzschean snobbery that characterised Banville’s dismissal of last year’s Booker jury, and I heartily dislike the novels he has written under his own name that I had to suffer thru at college. I’ll watch the show with interest though because Davies is a great screenwriter and I’ve come to appreciate McPherson more than I once did after teaching The Weir and having students enjoy its ambiguities immensely.