Bloodline - New Netflix Show

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Deesky, Mar 22, 2015.

  1. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    It deals with the murky goings on of a large family brought together for a special family event.

    It's from the people behind Damages (which I thought was mostly great) and uses a similar narrative device of flashforward scenes (as well as some flashbacks), but it does so less aggressively than in Damages, which was overused at times.

    I've seen three episodes so far. It's a strangely compelling, slow burn type show, not unlike The Affair, so action junkies will be disappointed. As it goes along, we learn more and more details/secrets from various family members - like peeling an onion, layer by layer.

    So far, I'm enjoying it...
     
  2. carlygtr56

    carlygtr56 Active Member

    Location:
    West Babylon, NY
    Just finished it. Slow moving but very interesting thru-out. I really enjoyed it.
     
  3. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Finished it now too. This is an amazingly well written and acted series. Yes, it's not an action based show, but what it is, is a character driven drama that subtly escalates the stakes with each passing episode towards the telegraphed ending, but which still manages to be thrilling.

    Sissy Spacek it almost wasted in a rather ineffectual role, but Ben Mendelsohn's performance as an A-grade ahole is sublime! Linda Cardellini puts in a great performance (damn, she hasn't aged since ER!). And the way it ended is surely a setup for another season.
     
  4. Ron Stone

    Ron Stone Offending Member

    Location:
    Deep Maryland
    A friend and I tried to watch Netflix streaming the other day. Couldn't seem to do it without installing Microsoft's Silverlight, which my buddy absolutely refused to do, due to known security issues.
     
  5. bababooey

    bababooey Forum Resident

    Location:
    Houston, TX USA
    Just got into it. Up to episode 10. Slow build up but now I'm hooked. The guy playing Danny is great. I still can't get used to Coach Taylor dropping F Bombs. It really seems strange.
     
  6. SMcFarlane

    SMcFarlane Forum Resident

    Location:
    Montreal
    Only on episode 7 at the moment ... don't want to read too much about it until I've watched the lot. But loving it. The slow pace of the story telling goes sufferably well with the presumably slow pace of life in the Keys. Danny seems like the Devil incarnate. Wicked, clever, praying on other people's weaknesses and getting them to do things they wouldn't otherwise. Brilliant show.
     
  7. JudasPriest

    JudasPriest Forum Resident

    Just finished episode 12 with just the finale to go. It didn't do much for me early on but from about episode 5 it improved and the last few have been very good indeed. Hope the finale (like so many other shows) doesn't let the side down...
     
  8. Encuentro

    Encuentro Forum Resident

    Just finished it. It was intense! One of the best dramas I've seen in quite a long time.
     
  9. Splungeworthy

    Splungeworthy Forum Rezidentura

    I liked it. Very atmospheric (claustrophobic?). It is a slow burn but really pays off in the end.
     
    Encuentro likes this.
  10. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    I skipped directly to the end of this thread so as to avoid any potential spoilers. I've watched three episodes and I'm hooked. I think @Deesky said in another thread the show is a slow burn, but burn it does.
     
  11. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    That's great to hear. I just don't get why the ratings appear to have been so low...
     
  12. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    But for your recommendation in the Marvel's Daredevil thread, I wouldn't have paid it any mind. Inadequate promotion maybe? Or perhaps it's not easily lumped into a genre that people are familiar with? I'm only three episodes in, so it's popularity or lack thereof is not a subject I can easily comment on.
     
  13. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    This might be a big part of it. I too was only peripherally aware of this new show and frankly, the title Bloodline put me off psychologically, as it conveyed themes that I wouldn't normally be interested in.

    It was only after reading almost universally positive reviews from various sites I visit regularly, some gushingly so, that I decided to give it a try (similar scenario as with Daredevil) and am glad I did so.
     
  14. Encuentro

    Encuentro Forum Resident

    I checked out the show based on this thread. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

    As I watching the show, I assumed it that it was a one shot deal based on the flash forwards. I don't want to spoil anything for anybody, but...you know. It all depends on how the show fares. Apparently, it isn't faring very well unfortunately.
     
  15. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    It's hard to tell with Netflix. The actual 'ratings' aren't released by Netflix (they never release that information), so what's been reported is mostly inferred through proxy information.

    But even that doesn't matter too much because the value to Netflix is having original content which forms an ever growing library of titles and which helps them to attract more paying customers for their service. So any particular show does not need to be 'profitable' in the traditional network sense in order to be picked up for another season.

    Traditional networks are starting to now realize that they need to produce their own shows in-house (instead of farming the off to other companies) because then they retain the full rights and can then on-sell the shows to streaming companies for very handsome per-episode fees (if they're popular, like say Seinfeld).
     
  16. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    Well, I'm through 8 episodes of Bloodline and the lines really have been drawn between some of the principals. It's not all there yet but obviously things will come to a head. It's a good show. I'm kind of disappointed Danny has revealed himself to be a hardcore criminal, I was actually rooting for him in the beginning.
     
    Deesky likes this.
  17. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    That's down to the sublime performance of Ben Mendelsohn. He brings such a mailable, chameleonic presence to Danny that in one episode you can be totally rooting for him, be ambivalent in the next, and hate his guts in the one after!

    Mendelsohn is under contract for season 2 (link has spoilers), which will start shooting in a few months and air somewhere around May 2016.
     
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  18. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    This may sound dumb, and now I know it's incorrect, but so far this seems like a one season show to me. I mean, I expect all to be resolved by the last episode.

    I like the show, but do you think it could devolve into an updated Dallas or Dynasty once the characters are all revealed for what they are? You kind of have Danny taking on the J.R. Ewing role--doing shady to illegal things, threatening blackmail, seemingly trying to consolidate power over the other members of the family. Then there's Kyle Chandler as the Patrick Duffy/Bobby Ewing counterpoint to Danny--not without fault but way more well-meaning and family oriented than Danny. Spacek is Miss Ellie. I hope I'm not wrecking this show for you. :)

    I've only seen eight episodes so maybe some of the analogies I draw here are laid to waste.
     
  19. Encuentro

    Encuentro Forum Resident

    I assumed it was a one season show as well. I'm surprised that Mendelsohn is under contract for season 2. I'm glad as I think he is an amazing actor, but...well, the fate of Danny is right there in the first episode.
     
  20. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    While I never watched Dallas, I did watch Dynasty but that was so long ago I hardly remember the tortured plot points. However, I get the gist of your concern.

    Perhaps a more contemporary analogue would be Broadchurch (UK). Season 1 was widely acclaimed and worked well as a one-off mini series. But due to the unexpected popularity, they decided to make another series, which was widely criticized for being unfocused and ill conceived.

    Bloodline could conceivably fall into the same trap. However, I am relatively optimistic that it will not. The story can be realistically extended by dealing with the fallout of the events that were set in motion in series one and how the cohesion of the family unit (such as it is) can survive the aftermath.

    Also, Netflix has been pretty good at developing its original programming, rarely setting a foot wrong (not that it would be publicly disclosed!) and it needs to keep developing that base of programming to attract new subscribers. So it's in their interest, much more so than the regular networks, to try and deliver as good a product as possible. And given the short run seasons, they can better plan out plot developments and characterization.

    Still, the proof of the puddling...
     
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  21. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    Man, that scene in episode 10 where John is trying to interrogate O'Bannon and then suddenly opens the door to the room and tells him he's free to go, "but if you keep doing what you've been doing--you're fu*ked", that's a great scene. Even with everything he knows about Danny he's willing to give them one more chance. It sets up the viewer for John doing a Dirty Harry when the **** hits the fan. There will be no prisoners. Or at least it presents that possibility.

    I also like how later in the episode, after John has heard Danny's voice on the surveillance recording, Danny drops John's kids off at the house after picking them up at school and taking them for pizza. In other words, I can get to your family very easily, Mr. brother-cop guy.

    Great episode.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2015
    peter fuller likes this.
  22. peter fuller

    peter fuller Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Great show, especially towards the middle and end when it really got cooking. The guy who played Danny is phenomenal and wavethatflag is right, that scene where Danny brings them back was intense.
     
  23. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    So, I finished the first season, and I'll give it four stars out of five, easy. Definitely a high quality show in terms of the writing and production. I'm not sure how I feel about the cliffhanger at the very end. I was more like "oh, brother" as opposed to "that's cool!" And now that you-know-who is gone, aside from flashbacks I suppose, how do you sustain a show w/o arguably the most interesting character? But the writers I'm sure must have some good stuff in store for season 2 or they wouldn't have gone that way. They could have easily drawn out the Danny v. John battle longer, put some lulls or a standoff in there.

    I was kind of thinking that Danny and John would amass so many skeletons/vulnerabilities on each other that they'd be forced into an uneasy d├ętente, but obviously that was not in the cards. And early on there's some very clear foreshadowing that Danny buys it.

    Good recommendation, Deesky.
     
  24. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Cheers. I too will be interested in how they handle season two and yes the only way for that character to reappear must be through flashbacks. I think the writers will need to be very skillful going forward because the potential pitfalls are numerous if handled carelessly.
     
  25. wavethatflag

    wavethatflag Your Ad Here

    Location:
    Pacifica, CA
    Yes, it could be that no one suspected Mendehlson would be the break-out star, and the story was the story. Or, maybe they know exactly what they're doing in terms of the writing and aren't concerned. It was pretty brave to kill off Sam Shepard. It'll be interesting to see if season 2 is as good as 1.
     

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