For all my self-righteous talk about having given up television, I've been renting HBO's Deadwood. In fact, over the past long weekend I've squandered six hours of precious not-work time watching it. And I believe squander is, indeed, the verb I want, though HBO has an economic model which is more acceptable to me than normal North American television and though the only product placement I've seen so far - it being set in the late 19th century - was for Bird's Custard, which is yums.
See, I'm not sure it's good. Seems kind of predictable, a little formulaic - just an HBO embroidery on a typical dramatic formula, which means overlying titties, horrific violence, and naughty language on relatively simple storylines. Of course, like most people I like seeing titties, horrific violence, and naughty language over simple storylines. But we're not talking the Sopranos Paint Their Wagons here. More Dr. Quinn: Medicine Bitch Who'll Cut Your Eyes Out, Cunt.
But I can't stop watching - I know already I'll rent and watch the whole thing. The acting is quite nice, with Ian McShane - formerly the man who made my mum's heart beat a little faster as Lovejoy - playing the completely stereotypical "devil you know" likeable villain, and a taut little piece called Timothy Olyphant rocking a moustache as well as Tom Selleck as the heroic lead. And even if the acting was utter crap, I'd probably still watch the whole thing because I've got a thing about westerns, and this one is ever so slightly based on actual events. Westerns. Imagine having that history of invasion, dehumanization, and genocide not only integrated into your popular culture, but celebrated in your popular culture. No wonder Americans take so many drugs.