Sunday, November 30, 2008

THE Best Show on Television

We just got finished watching episode 5, season 3 of Brotherhood. It is astonishing to say the least. This is a small scene of its authenticity. But, you must begin from the beginning to truly grip the drama of this show. Below this clip is an excerpted, marvelous review from the New York Times. I am saddened that it will end in three weeks. I wish I were you who have never seen it and could watch it all over again.

“Brotherhood” seems to suffer under the misfortune of timing. Had it arrived 10 or 15 years earlier, when long-form narrative was not the dominant form on cable television, it would have been felt, arguably, more as an explosion than a trickle. The series has at least so far failed to find a large audience, indicating perhaps how much we have come to take good serial drama for granted.

It is a sign of how quietly the show has been received that it produced a landmark moment in modern television last season that went almost entirely unnoticed. Believing that a career criminal suffering from a mild form of brain damage would not exactly make for an ideal father, Michael’s girlfriend, Kath (Tina Benko), aborted the baby they were going to have, without agonizing later that she had made the gravest mistake of her life.

This amounted to one of the most honest depictions of unplanned pregnancy in any medium in quite some time, and seemed to stand out especially on television, where women are typically saved from unwanted children by the convenient and politically neutral plot device of the miscarriage. (Or alternatively, they decide, like Miranda on “Sex and the City,” simply to have them.) Among its many virtues, “Brotherhood” isn’t in the business of life lessons.

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