Thursday, December 14, 2017

MASKED 10 (OR 15) SHOWS FOR 2017

Here’s the annual list of my favorite shows of the year. In no way are these the “best” shows of 2017 because, for the life of me, I don’t know what that means. I try not to be cute and impress you all with some obscure series that is on some unknown network. These are all pretty well-known properties. Although I call it the MASKED 10 it’s really made up of 15 shows and eight of them were carryovers from 2016.

A lot of critical darlings are missing and, yes, I watched several of them but I enjoyed these more. The one I have yet to see is THE HANDMAID’S TALE which I hope to get to possibly over the Holidays. I think I’m going to like it a lot.

As a scheduler, I cannot help but put some of these shows together since the whole is more than the sum of its parts.

They are listed in some order of favoritocity so there is sort of a new favorite among the favorites this year. So, here’s this year’s MASKED 10

Better Call Saul (AMC)
The Americans (FX)
Billions (SHOWTIME)
Game of Thrones (HBO)
Master of None (NETFLIX)
Silicon Valley (HBO)
The Deuce (HBO)
Jane the Virgin/Crazy Ex-Girlfriend/Riverdale (the CW)
Fresh Off the Boat/The Goldbergs (ABC)
Catastrophe (AMAZON)

Here are the five that didn’t make the cut but I thoroughly enjoyed and would strongly recommend if you have yet to see.

The Magnificent Mrs. Maisel (AMAZON)
Girls (HBO)
Chewing Gum (NETFLIX)
Difficult People (HULU)
Fargo (FX)

If I can say there was one disappointment for me this year it was the return of CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM (HBO). It has run its course.

The Emperor’s New Clothes series of the year (there always are a bunch to choose from) was LEGION (FX).

Here are the shows I watch out of loyalty and I’m looking forward to a time when I no longer feel the obligation. I’m a completest.

The Walking Dead (AMC)
Orange is the New Black (NETFLIX)
Suits (USA)
Homeland (SHOWTIME)
Empire (FOX)

Finally, PREACHER (AMC) was the freshman show that I was so looking forward to but I found the second season a disappointment.

I already have lots of stuff on the runway for 2018 viewing. It never stops but there’s a lot of really good stuff out there 365 days a year.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017


Here are the MASKED 10 Jazz albums of 2017

Although there was a lot of sweet Jazz this year there was nothing that I would call great or transcendent. These are the ten that would catch my attention while I shuffled through the albums in my collection. The pleasant discover was Joao Barradas and it’s always great when Cecile McLorin Salvant blesses us with an album.

·      DAVID MURRAY & AKI TAKASE – Cherry-Sakura
·      CHARLES LLOYD NEW QUARTET – Passin’ Through
·      JOAO BARRADAS – Directions
·      HELENA ECKEMOFF QUINTET – In the Shadow of a Cloud
·      CECILE McLORIN SALVANT – Dreams and Daggers
·      SHERMAN IRBY & MOMENTUM – Cerulean Canvas
·      VICTOR GONCALVES – Victor Goncalves Quartet
·      JEN SHYU – Song of the Silver Geese
·      JOHN BEASLEY – MONK’estra, Vol.2
·      TROY ROBERTS – Tales & Tones