Tuesday, October 10, 2006

CSI:Miami and Shakespeare

The only TV shows I watch without fail are The Mahabharata and CSI:Miami. I like CSI:Miami because it’s a good old-fashioned sort of yarn like a Western, with an unquestionably good, but lonely, hero fighting against evil and protecting the weak and innocent. Unfortunately, there are as many people who passionately hate the show and David Caruso as love them (just read the Television Without Pity forum – it’s almost exclusively for people who love to hate it). They especially dislike the tagline before the credits, almost ALWAYS said by Horatio Caine. Actually, there’s a bit of a theatre tradition to ending scenes with something snappy and memorable – Shakespeare did it all the time. So I figured I’d defend CSI:Miami by showing how a determined critic could rip apart Shakespeare with the exact same criticisms…

“I love the other shows in the Shakespeare franchise, but I just can’t stand Hamlet!”

“Oh, I know! And what’s with the ‘cloak of inky black’, anyway? Since when do you have a prince dressed entirely in black doublet and hose in a climate like Denmark’s?”

“It’s the Doublet And Hose Of Justice – he puts them on, and he can read the hearts of criminals even when they’re praying!”

“Have you noticed, whenever Hamlet is in a scene, he ALWAYS gets the last word! As if his one-liners are SO brilliant, nobody else can think of a thing to say.”

“And he acts like he’s so tough, when you know that Polonius could kick his ass.”

“What about the one he said last night? ‘The play’s the thing, Wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king.’ OMG, would you like some CHEESE with that HAM(let) sandwich???”

“LOL My mom insists on watching this crappy show, and even SHE rolled her eyes at that line.”

“And are we supposed to think that Hamlet is the ONLY person in all of Denmark who can solve a crime? What, there are no judges or guards, just this scrawny red-headed guy with a rapier who manages to figure everything out all by himself?”

“And of course, the ghost will ONLY talk to HIM. Just an excuse to give him more time onscreen.”

“Have you ever counted how many people Hamlet kills? Forget Fortinbras, Hamlet could depopulate Denmark all by himself. Any prince who killed that many people in real life would be forced to turn in his sword and there’d be disciplinary hearings.”

“Oh, no, not Hamlet. He’s wearing the DAHOJ, remember? Good thing they didn’t show us the scene on board the ship where he somehow manages to convince an entire crew of sailors to disobey orders and do what he says instead – those tights probably give him the power to fly through the air.”

“And what did you think about that scene in the graveyard? Talking to dead bodies – as if. God, whoever wrote that piece of garbage should be shot.”

“The writing is crap from the very opening – all that fog and people running around scared. And then…wait for it…A GHOST!! Just a cheesy gimmick to grab people’s attention.”

“Yeah, they really jumped the shark with that one. Well, I’ve had it – I’m going to be tuning in the Spanish Tragedy at 10:00PM on Monday nights from now on, and CBS can just kiss my ass.”

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