Breaking bad

Why you should never watch sci-fi series on streaming channels

Jason Dessen, the hero (and, as you’ll discover shortly, anti-hero) of Apple TV’s latest sci-fi caper Dark Matter, is a physics professor at a second-rate university in Chicago. You can tell he’s not that good at his job because he introduces the concept of Schrödinger’s cat (surely the only interesting bit in the entirety of physics) five minutes before the end of a lecture. ‘Oh and the cat dies,’ he says to the uninterested students as they file hurriedly out of class. With no time constraint, sci-fi series on streaming channels can keep spinning you along for all eternity Still, at least he’s happy. His teenage son might have been

How The Sopranos changed TV for ever

‘Too many characters, too many plot lines, characters who weren’t very good at their jobs, and their personal lives were a mess.’ Thus the memo to the creatives behind Hill Street Blues. ‘It was like a blueprint for what made every show successful since The Sopranos,’ Kevin Spacey giggles to Peter Biskind. ‘If the NBC executives had had their way, the road from then to now would never have been paved.’ As the quondamlead of one of that road’s biggest stones, House of Cards, Spacey can perhaps be excused his post hoc moment. Still, his big point stands. There was TV before The Sopranos and TV after The Sopranos, and

Intelligence-insulting schlock: Sky Atlantic’s Your Honor reviewed

I’m really not enjoying Your Honor, the latest vehicle for Bryan Cranston to play a good man driven to the dark side by extraordinary and compelling circumstances designed to make the viewer go: ‘There but for the grace of God go I…’ The problem with the compelling circumstances in this case is that they feel so desperately contrived. Cranston plays a priggishly upright New Orleans judge who radiates implausible goodness and rectitude. We first glimpse this during the case of a trial of a black woman accused by police of concealing drugs in an intimate part of her anatomy. A white cop, sweating integrity, swears on the witness stand that