Wednesday, March 2, 2011

"Where's Mine?" -- The Great Equalizer Top Twenty

I'm a big fan of entertainment as a great way to survive the long, cold, snowy winters. I resort to certain television shows to provide a great escape and I prefer programs with a great plot,  like in the novels I prefer. The shows I tend to enjoy begin with a cast of characters with interesting traits and great comradery,  who encounter a problem and solve it within the hour program. The programs I like seem to have a common theme of "balance of power" among the various strata of society. Like the novels I enjoy, the programs I seek have great conflict, and interesting problems for the cast to solve that show we are all the same as humans regardless of our circumstances.  

Fairly Legal shows the ultimate balance of power with a main character whose job as a mediator/lawyer has a challenge to bring opposing parties to a resolution of their differences with a "win-win" solution to their conflict.

Harry's Law is a new program with Kathy Bates playing a rich patent lawyer who gives up boring comfort for exciting satisfaction. She helps the powerless in a bad neighborhood to use the law to better their circumstances and claim their equality. She shows great humor and balance in solutions to help those less fortunate. One unfortunate, elderly client asks the gritty, basic question that hovers over human conflict, "Where's mine?"

Royal Pains features a doctor who loses his city trauma center job because he chooses to save the life of a boy who comes from the "wrong side of the tracks" instead of a rich, important man. He finds a new life in the Hamptons caring for the medical issues of the rich and famous who deal with as much unhappiness and pain as the poorest person back in the city. His billionaire benefactor, Boris (dramatically played by Campbell Scott, son of George C. Scott), has a rare, incurable, genetic disease and struggles with his girlfriend over her pregnancy. She wants a family and he wants to end the disease forever and let it die with him. He has more money than God but lives with a disease the money can't control. It isn't a soap opera, but weekly, the cast of "Hank Med" encounters unhappiness and great pain among the people who live the enviable lives of the very rich. Those less financially endowed might envy those people, but alas, they suffer misfortunes just like the poorest among us. Money doesn't always buy good health.

Merlin has been a surprising hit in my house. It comes "from the land of make-believe" where the powerless resort to magic to equal the playing field while trying to keep it a secret from the powerful rulers who want to put all things "magic" in a lock box forever to maintain their own power. From the days of King Arthur, the scenery is beautiful and the plots make one wish magic was really possible to make our lives equal

Southland grabbed me from the first show because the haunting intro is worthy of a few awards. The sepia stills and the forlorn music draws me to see what the weekly disaster will be in south Los Angeles. It isn't just another cop show and there is pathos and drama equal to the headlines of the city's newspapers.

Here is a further list of highly interesting dramas of human conflict that never fail to deliver a good hour of entertainment in the quest to corral the guilty or improve the quality of life of the unfortunates, and offer a good dose of "my piece of the pie." 

White Collar
Hawaii Five-O
Chicago Code
Blue Bloods
Detroit 1-8-7

Notable Mention-currently off season:

Human Target
The Closer
Burn Notice
Lie to Me


  1. Cool! Some of these have been advertised and I knew little to nothing about them. I try hard not to get addicted to new shows because it already feels like I watch too much TV, but now I've got to check a few of these out. I'm already addicted to NCIS and NCIS LA on your list!

  2. I love NCIS! We watch that every week along with Hawaii 5-0. I also like Fairly Legal and White Collar. Bless the DVR because none of these are appropriate for the kids so we sit down to watch tv after their bedtime. The ones my hubby doesn't like I usually turn on while I'm ironing! I've heard The Good Wife is pretty good but haven't tuned in yet. I'll have to check out Harry's Law; I love Kathy Bates.

  3. We are different ages but I like!

    Desperate Housewives
    Prison break
    Mad Men

    Funnily enough ALL US shows. I download them for free but don't tell anyone !!!