Monday, 3 September 2007

Californication

It's nice to see David Duchovny back on TV. Being a sci-fi nerd, I was a big fan of The X-Files back in the day, but I'll be the first to admit Duchovny's not the greatest actor in the world.

He has a limited range, oscillating somewhere between deadpan and wry. To succeed, he needs a script that can make use of his particular style. The X-Files did this well; his matter-of-factness brought a certain level of credibility to the incredible storylines. It's taken another 5 years, but thankfully he's again found a showcase for his talents.

Californication is my new favourite show, and will probably remain so until The L Word comes back next year. Or Battlestar Galactica in November. Or Heroes later this month. Ah, I'm so fickle.

After the first episode aired last Monday, Andrew Bolt had a little rant about Channel Ten peddling pornography.

Anything that gets Andrew Bolt worked up is usually pretty good value, and this is no exception.

Californication is a story about a guy bored with his life, living a joyless existence pining after his ex and the happy family life he's left behind. Even a constant succession of beautiful young women in his bed doesn't help. Most of the time he looks like he'd rather be taking a nap. The only time he perks up is when he's around his ex and his daughter.

Mr Bolt has clearly missed the key element of pornography, which is its fundamental lack of story. Pornography is, as he points out, "the depiction of erotic behaviour . . . intended to cause sexual excitement", and that's it. It's not intended to tell you a story, or teach you anything.

I'm not aware of Mr Bolt's personal predilections, but if he gets sexually excited by watching an ageing Lothario boredly shag his way through a succession of less-than-satisfying encounters, then he's seeing something I'm not.

Californication has those rarest of commodities in television: story and characters. And it's not pitched at ADHD 15-year-olds. It's pitched squarely at adults who can understand the emotional undertones. Adults who can look past the tits 'n' ass and see a sad guy looking for an emotional connection in the only way he knows how, and failing miserably.

Adults unlike Andrew Bolt.

2 comments:

paul said...

Right on, mate. Bolt really needs to come out.

Briallen said...

I like it too, Matt.