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EricMontreal22

Swingtown: Discussion Thread

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Is this a primetime soap like Melrose Place or is it just a regular drama with isolated episodes? I really want to watch a good primetime soap.

Imo, the best primetime soap to watch this summer is Army Wives.

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I found Swingtown too full of cliches and very boring.

To start with, Grant Show's character being a pilot who sleeps with stewardesses is just so trite. Couldn't the writers have given him an occupation that doesn't bring to mind Quagmire from Family Guy? Seriously, that was just silly.

The red-haired woman was awfully quick to dump her former friend, wasn't she? The least she could have done was said she was sorry but she already had dinner plans with the new neighbors she just met instead of not calling back. It seemed like she accepted the swingers much too easily too.

The kid who got beat up by the girl seems to obviously have a crush on his friend, who likes that blonde girl.

I know the first episode is supposed to set up the characters, but I felt that they were mostly bland and the main point was to shock us. I wasn't shocked, but I had a hard time keeping my eyes open.

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I don't think it's being written to shock at all though it is interesting most of the negative reviews complain that it's been obviously watered down from its original HBO pilot script--implying they wanted more sex, etc. I liked the pilot a lot but I definetly am gonna give it more episodes to see what happens (then again Mad Men was my fave show last year and I know many soap fans found it boring and slow...)

The air pilot thing thoughwas meant to be (whether it worked or not) comic and sorta playing on the 70s porn cliche.

I'd say it's more of a primetime soap than not anyway--it seems to basically be a serial--in terms of episodes maybe kinda like Six Feet Under (though not so far of that quality even if they share an EP and director) in terms of each episode having an individual theme but going into its next episode.

Steve we never seem to agree on primetime shows just daytime ones (I have given Army Wives a chance and it just seemed so... maudlin)

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Not sure what is happenng here. Apparently Mad Men is airing on both CTV and Bravo!

As for SWINGTOWN - just can't get enough of those tight pants. See you here next week.

Yeah CTV and Bravo are both owned by the same company--CTV seems to be showing last year's Mad Men on Sundays and Bravo the following Wednesday. Of course that season won't be finished when the NEW season starts on AMC, a station we get in most markets in Canada on basic cable now anyway...

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Well, I watched it tonight. Enjoyed it, but it would be a little slow moving, for some . Maybe I'm expecting Desperate 70's Housewives, and it isn't that at all. As for the clichés... sure, lots but I think that's necessary to set the groundwork for a "period" piece. If anything, I took exception to a few that were missing. Not one divorced couple and not one overly Scandinavian interior decor. And no arc lamps? :P

I'd like to see a scene where one of the kids is watching television and we see a glimpse of Bea Arthur as MAUDE, or Valerie Harper as RHODA, or better yet a then popular daytime soap like AW. I know. Too much to ask for.

The Susan/Molly Parker character needs a makeover quick. The Carrie White look just isn't doing it for me. She needs that prom redo. I expect that will be a plotline along with the obvious lesbian hints. I don't really look like Jack Davenport except that I had let my hair grow for a while, and we sort of share certain facial features - the odd profile, the big nose, the big eyebrows, the overall colouring, wish I had his distinctive voice.

I expect the Janet character will EXPLODE at some point, and either go completely "women's liberation" or be an usher of the Reagan 80's.

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After episode 2 I'm both more into the show and less, if that makes ANY sense. I'm worried that viewership will erode--there wasn't any sex in this episode, a big reason I expect people watched the first episode--but creatively I'm probably more into it than ever although a few plot points felt too forced, in a soap opera way (ie the timing of dropping off of the pie with them coming home, the pie and earing symbolism, etc). Loved the version of Waiting for Godot done with opressed female stereotypes (the fact we got to see bits of it, something I'm sure some people found boring but I found hilarious after some classes I've gone through, and not just hear about it made it all the funnier--most shows wouldn't have bothered staging it).

So yeah I'm a bit worried that some viewers will find the attention to character and details and lack of actual sex boring and the show won't have a full run but I think I'm more into it than ever (still have NO idea what I think of the kid's story with that neighbour girl though...) The thing is most primetime shows especially network primetime soaps are more plot based than character based (as much as I love some of the Housewives etc), unlike daytime (well daytime at its best ;) ). But Swingtown despite its "lurid" premise strikes me as more slow character based--which is why it reminds me of cable shows liek Six Feet Under with which is shares some staff. I wouldn't say its anywhere as good but SFU is prob my top show, but...

Oh and you're so right about Molly and it's already been addressed (her fashion) ;)

TC you should post a pic :P

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TC you should post a pic :P

Maybe after this latest arthritis flare-up dies down and I no longer have that pained expression on my face. B)

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I finally watched the second episode and while I found it much better than the first, I'm not sure I'll keep watching.

I don't think the characters are well defined enough, especially the men. What is the difference between Grant Show's character and Jack Davenport's?

Also, I would have liked more conflict from Susan & her husband about the fact that they just had sex with other people. It seemed like they had one short conversation about how awkward it would be to see the other couple and then when they actually got together with them everything was fine.

Part of my problem with the show is how everything seems so obvious. Susan and Treena are going to hook up, that teenage girl is going to sleep with her teacher, etc. Also, I don't care about any of the teens.

I'll probably give it one more week to see if it gets better.

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I'd like to see a scene where one of the kids is watching television and we see a glimpse of Bea Arthur as MAUDE, or Valerie Harper as RHODA, or better yet a then popular daytime soap like AW. I know. Too much to ask for.

They actually showed Trina watching "The $20,000 Pyramid" in the first episode, so I'm hoping beyond hope that Janet is one of those lonely housewives who watch soaps all day.

Janet is probably the most interesting character and the actress who plays her is the best on the show. I'm more interested in her, her husband, and her kid than I am in the other couples, but I like the others too. I don't like how Susan's son is being that girl's bitch. She broke into their house, was VERY rude about it, and now she's demanding that he buy stuff for her and bring it to her. I don't like the little bitch.

Grant Show is always awesome, so I like him in this. Trina and Susan are boring, but I like Trina a little bit more than Susan. Whoever said that Susan reminds them of Carrie White hit it right on the head and I'm shocked I didn't see it myself.

This will probably be my "Hidden Palms" for this summer. I'll watch it, enjoy it for it is, and not expect it to last any longer than the end of summer.

And damn, they are hitting people over the head with the 70s music.

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I finally watched the second episode and while I found it much better than the first, I'm not sure I'll keep watching.

I don't think the characters are well defined enough, especially the men. What is the difference between Grant Show's character and Jack Davenport's?

Also, I would have liked more conflict from Susan & her husband about the fact that they just had sex with other people. It seemed like they had one short conversation about how awkward it would be to see the other couple and then when they actually got together with them everything was fine.

Part of my problem with the show is how everything seems so obvious. Susan and Treena are going to hook up, that teenage girl is going to sleep with her teacher, etc. Also, I don't care about any of the teens.

I'll probably give it one more week to see if it gets better.

Steve Steve Steve :P You're watching for a plot based show while I think it's a (admittedly slow to reveal) character driven show.

I think the prob is it's a cable show written for network tv. I don't mean in terms of lack of nudity etc as much as I mean in terms of it goes slowly like cable (you didn't learn much about the characters on Six Fee tUnder till midway through season 1) but because network tv relies on rating smuch more and it could be canceled at any moment they have to throw in ill fittign soap opera moments to keep the story moving and network audiences interested.

Grant and Jack are completely diff though--they come from diff backgrounds, different standings, Grant's character is already jaded about sex, about the world of (mor eor less) priviledge, can talk his wife into pretty much anything... Jack's character wants to be able to do all that but can't--or does it clumsily. I don't think Susan and treena are gonna hook up actually--the focus seems to be on Susan and her old neighbour's husband.

I actually appreciate that the show is turning into a riff about adult friendships and if being close to someone cuz you live by them is enough, when to hold on to a friendship, etc

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They actually showed Trina watching "The $20,000 Pyramid" in the first episode, so I'm hoping beyond hope that Janet is one of those lonely housewives who watch soaps all day.

Janet is probably the most interesting character and the actress who plays her is the best on the show. I'm more interested in her, her husband, and her kid than I am in the other couples, but I like the others too. I don't like how Susan's son is being that girl's bitch. She broke into their house, was VERY rude about it, and now she's demanding that he buy stuff for her and bring it to her. I don't like the little bitch.

Grant Show is always awesome, so I like him in this. Trina and Susan are boring, but I like Trina a little bit more than Susan. Whoever said that Susan reminds them of Carrie White hit it right on the head and I'm shocked I didn't see it myself.

This will probably be my "Hidden Palms" for this summer. I'll watch it, enjoy it for it is, and not expect it to last any longer than the end of summer.

And damn, they are hitting people over the head with the 70s music.

Well considering, for me, Hidden Palms completely fell apart by episode 2 this has already surpassed it :P

As for the 70s music I agree--but then again if the show was made in the 70s by modern standards (ie fillign a show with popular songs of the time) would itr be any diff?

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Steve Steve Steve :P You're watching for a plot based show while I think it's a (admittedly slow to reveal) character driven show.

I think the prob is it's a cable show written for network tv. I don't mean in terms of lack of nudity etc as much as I mean in terms of it goes slowly like cable (you didn't learn much about the characters on Six Fee tUnder till midway through season 1) but because network tv relies on rating smuch more and it could be canceled at any moment they have to throw in ill fittign soap opera moments to keep the story moving and network audiences interested.

Grant and Jack are completely diff though--they come from diff backgrounds, different standings, Grant's character is already jaded about sex, about the world of (mor eor less) priviledge, can talk his wife into pretty much anything... Jack's character wants to be able to do all that but can't--or does it clumsily. I don't think Susan and treena are gonna hook up actually--the focus seems to be on Susan and her old neighbour's husband.

I actually appreciate that the show is turning into a riff about adult friendships and if being close to someone cuz you live by them is enough, when to hold on to a friendship, etc

Eric, Eric, Eric, you're looking for a character-driven show where there are no well-defined characters! If anything, I'd say it is shock-driven.

Using your comparison to Six Feet Under, on that show, we knew how both David & Nate felt about their father and the family business from the first episode or two. The characters explained their feelings to each other. As for Swingtown? What is the difference in Grant and Jack's backgrounds? We know nothing about them except that they're both horny and they like the Playboy Club.

Seriously, you don't see how the focus is on Susan and Treena instead of Janet's husband? Mark my words, the day Susan goes to retrieve her lost earring, she's going to be in Treena's bed. It couldn't be more obvious. Janet's husband might be attracted to the world of swinging, but he doesn't seem particularly interested in Susan.

I think TC is right about Janet; she's about to turn into a conservative "Just Say No" Reagan-era Republican and she is the most interesting character so far because we've seen her inner struggles with the changing world around her.

I could appreciate the show being about adult friendships if it focused more on why Susan & Janet were close to begin with. Imo, proximity doesn't make you someone's best friend if you have nothing else in common with them and so far we've seen no explanation for either why they were so close or why Susan dumped her so easily.

Basically, I don't want more plot, I want the show to delve more deeply into who these characters are and how their relationships came about.

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I think we already have a clear view of why Susan and Janet WERE close (ie location, kids who played together, many reasons that frnakly my parents were close with other friends when I was growing up) and why that's breaking apart now. Yeah ther emust be somethign else there to be BEST friends (besides the fact that Susan was VERY VERY young when she married and got pregnant, as we've learned and was prob desperate for a friend and hadn't found her own identity). I don't feel Susan's dumped her at ALL--she ditched one event because the new neighbours party seemed more intriguing--something I know, not proudly, I've done to old friends before, and since then tried everythign she could to reconnect.

I do agree with some of your points... I'm gonna wait till tomorrow night's episode and then see how I feel and reply ;) I do have to say I'm not convinced it's a great show yet but I think your criticisms, by the same token, are harsh. (Shock driven? What were the shocks last week?)

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I think we already have a clear view of why Susan and Janet WERE close (ie location, kids who played together, many reasons that frnakly my parents were close with other friends when I was growing up) and why that's breaking apart now. Yeah ther emust be somethign else there to be BEST friends (besides the fact that Susan was VERY VERY young when she married and got pregnant, as we've learned and was prob desperate for a friend and hadn't found her own identity). I don't feel Susan's dumped her at ALL--she ditched one event because the new neighbours party seemed more intriguing--something I know, not proudly, I've done to old friends before, and since then tried everythign she could to reconnect.

I do agree with some of your points... I'm gonna wait till tomorrow night's episode and then see how I feel and reply ;) I do have to say I'm not convinced it's a great show yet but I think your criticisms, by the same token, are harsh. (Shock driven? What were the shocks last week?)

I didn't think I was being that harsh but maybe I was just expecting more from Alan Poul.

For me, the shocks in the second episode were the trip to the Playboy Club & the teenage girl living in the woods. In the first two episodes, it felt to me like the show was spending more time coming up with topics for watercooler conversations instead of fleshing out the characters.

I still think it rang false that Susan would neglect to call Janet and cancel their plans, especially since they used to be so close.

Having said that, I really liked the third episode. I loved how they explored more of Susan & Janet's past friendship. I think you're right that Susan is just now coming into her own and she will grow apart from Janet even more. I even found the teens easier to take this week, except for Laurie and her teacher.

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Susan and Janet didn't have firm plans though--nothign to cancel. It was a "if we're not too busy unpacking we might drop in" thing.

I dunno Alan Poule is a director/producer, not writer so I didn't think this would be another Six Feet Under. But... I'm really glad you liekd the third ep--I hope it means you'll keep watching--I agree the show probablyw as way too slow setting up these characters in a 3 dimensional way (especially with trigger happy Summertime network tv--I wonder how the ratings are keeping)

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