Categories Billions Poll Print Media

10 top TV shows of 2018 – Dec 30, 2018

Billions: “Superbly Crafted, Slyly Written, Magnificently Acted Drama”

by Mark Davidziak | The Cleveland | December 29, 2018

For the last few years, more and more of the high ground in television has been claimed by the streaming services. But, let’s face it, that’s mostly meant Netflix, which, in terms of quality, has established itself as a worthy rival to such cable channels as FX, AMC, Showtime and HBO.

But 2018 may be remembered as the year that Amazon Prime shoved its way into the quality discussion, more than earning a spot at the table reserved for TV’s stellar programmers. Year-in-review top-10 lists are, without question, highly subjective exercises at best, but it’s certainly indicative of Amazon Prime’s success that three of my selections belong to the streaming services: “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Homecoming” and “A Very English Scandal.”

Yup, there’s a new heavyweight contender in town, and 2018 demonstrated that reality in compelling fashion. It’s the year that Amazon truly arrived. But that’s not to say Amazon has put a lock on the crown as undisputed champion. AMC, despite the continuing droop in ratings and quality for “The Walking Dead,” also had an extremely strong year. And, like Amazon, AMC has three spots on my top 10 list: for the ever-intriguing “Better Call Saul” and two very different newcomers, “The Terror” and “Lodge 49.”

Yet none of those shows deserves the No. 1 spot in my estimation. That august ranking belongs to:

“Billions” (Showtime): This shamelessly underappreciated and overlooked drama has become the “Justified” of its time – a superbly crafted, slyly written, magnificently acted drama all but ignored when it comes time for awards and, well, top 10 lists. And this year’s third season was the best yet. The high-stakes Manhattan chess match continues to put the brilliant focus on the intense, often-ruthless rivalry between U.S. Attorney Charles “Chuck” Rhoades Jr. (Paul Giamatti) and billionaire hedge fund manager Robert “Bobby Axe” Axelrod (Damian Lewis). The third season got an added boost by the elevation of Jeffrey DeMunn to series regular and guest appearances by Clancy Brown as Attorney General Waylon “Jock” Jeffcoat.

Read the rest of the original article at The Cleveland

Categories Billions Poll Print Media

Sean T. Collins’s Eight Best TV Shows of 2018 – Dec 28, 2018

Billions: “A Whip-Smart, Drum-Tight Financial Thriller”

by Sean T. Collins | Decider | December 28, 2018

Weird ‘Flix, but okay: 2018 saw a certain streaming behemoth finally achieve the approximate cultural reach and clout the Big Four broadcast networks still enjoyed as recently as a decade ago. Unfortunately, the level of artistic quality and risk-taking roughly followed suit.

But even the algorithm-assisted return of TV monoculture—you can have any flavor you like, as long as it’s a flavor our data indicates you’ve enjoyed before—couldn’t stamp out the hard-earned gains television has made as an art form since Tony Soprano woke up that morning 20 years ago. Shows predicated on the idea that challenging your audience is a vital part of entertaining that audience, even if it’s an audience you have to will into existence in the process, are still out there.

Television can still make even a jaded viewer sob with sorrow and joy, recoil in suspense and terror, stare in silent (or shouting!) awe at the sheer emotional and aesthetic audacity of it all. Between them, the eight shows below did all that for me and more.

#5 – Billions

In the immortal words of Qui-Gon Jinn, “There’s always a bigger fish.” Billions, a show full of characters who might drop that quote into a conversation with only a hint of irony, demonstrated the truth of this maxim all season. Long the story of the Ahab vs. Moby-Dick conflict of ambitious federal attorney Chuck Rhoades and his hedge-fund-king nemesis Bobby Axelrod, the show’s third outing spent its first half watching Axe extricate himself from the brilliantly planned trap Chuck sprang on him during Season Two, with Chuck’s wife and Axe’s close friend Wendy Rhoades as the fulcrum for the escape.

But all the while, Bobby’s brainiac protege Taylor Mason (nonbinary actor Asia Kate Dillon in a role all the more groundbreaking for its matter-of-factness) and Chuck’s hang-em-high boss Attorney General Jock Jeffcoat (Clancy Brown, looming and drawling like a bizarre High Plains Frankenstein) were moving closer to springing traps of their own. Season’s end saw the one-time arch-enemies in an alliance against their new foes—and Brian Koppelman & David Levien’s whip-smart, drum-tight financial thriller hit new heights of both entertainment and insight into the world of the One Percent.

Read the rest of the original article at Decider

Categories Billions Trailer Video

Billions Season 4 Teaser Trailer & Release Date – Dec 19, 2018

You Gotta Pick Sides

by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | December 19, 2018

It’s finally here! It’s what you all have been waiting for – the Billions season four teaser trailer! Billions season four will premiere March 17, 2019 at 9:00 pm ET. Enjoy:

Continue reading Billions Season 4 Teaser Trailer & Release Date – Dec 19, 2018

Categories Billions Poll Print Media

The 10 Best Musical TV Moments of 2018 – Dec 13, 2018

Bobby’s Bubbling Water

by Sean T. Collins | Vulture | December 13, 2018

Don’t cry, don’t raise your eye, it’s only the best music cues of the year. And as in past years, there’s an embarrassment of riches to choose from. Certainly, the sounds of the ’80s remain television’s staple crop when it comes to using preexisting pop and rock songs to complement, comment on, and enhance the action onscreen: Pose, Narcos: Mexico, The Americans, and The Assassination of Gianni Versace feature almost nothing but. Yet the approaches they take are as varied as their styles and subject matter, and when you factor in other eras and genres, the soundscape opens up tremendously. There’s more to a good music cue than syncing a great song to an important scene: Ideally, the song can put into words and music what the characters, and the world surrounding them, can’t quite express themselves. That’s what music does for all of us, after all — why should fictional characters be any different? Here are the ten best moments from a year of TV music that belong on everyone’s playlist.

Continue reading The 10 Best Musical TV Moments of 2018 – Dec 13, 2018

Categories Billions Media

Billions Season 3 Out On DVD – Sept 25, 2018

Own Billion$

by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | September 25, 2018

Billions season three has been released today on DVD! Available at Target, Wal-Mart, Amazon, Best Buy or your local store. Overview: This drama reveals the lives and machinations of powerful players in high finance. Set in New York, a wealthy hedge fund manager uses all of his cunning to engineer profitable trades. Such ambition naturally leads to corruption, and a U.S. attorney pursues a case against the manager. Unexpected tips and revealed secrets swing their fortunes back and forth. These two strong personalities drive the action in each episode as the love of money crosses legal boundaries.