Last login: Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Do we want reality or entertainment? In the hypothetical Pat supposes - that the viewer be entertained more than be informed about the reality of post-Katrina existence - is a sad comment to make. The plot line's go nowhere? LIFE WENT NOWHERE! It was minutia, struggle for little advancement, dead-end reality as insurance policies were not honored and the property of lawful, honest property owners were usurped by the red tape and extensions of time they could not afford. The desperation in the air was only buoyed by the inordinate amount of artists - musicians, chefs, Black Indians - who persevered against the odds and often lost vast amounts of personal money to remain a part of the NOLA landscape. THAT'S what TREME is about, save the fact that, if you HAVE been there like many of us have, it is about the reality of a funky neighborhood that has been doing what we see in the HBO drama TREME since 1870... they just are using 2005 as the current backdrop for the "back of town". It was the same in 1930, 1950 , 1970.... music beams from there. And the drop ins.. "famous" people as you all think.. are humorously processed by the media-gulping, outside-of-New-orleans types... if you live there, that's normal. You see these people as part of the woodwork... they aren't walking around like "ooo, look at me, I'm famous" like you purport... if you're at a party, you see Elvis Costello, Taj Mahal, Paul McCartney.. living there 10 yrs, I bumped into a who's who of FAMOUS people.. Dick Cavett, Bill Murray, Levon Helm, etc... all off the cuff kinds of bumpings into. It happens, and it seems they really get how to display the reality of that.
Back to the orig point... when reality is skirted for this kind of ENTERTAIN ME OR I WILL PAN YOU type of critique, we just take another chip out of a beautifully produced piece of truely genuine work, something that really reflects life there at a specific, volatile time. Stuff happened.. that's it. They are NAILING it.. I give them a 75% reality rating... All in the Family was the previous all-time winner for me at like 60% reality. It is it's own reward to GET this series, and I feel for anyone who more wants to be ENTERTAINED by people going through what these characters go through than actually see there real plights.
June 18, 2010 at 9:38 a.m.
( permalink | suggest removal )
© 2016 KPBS Public Broadcasting