Thursday, April 28, 2016

Silicon Valley's third season premiere.

A couple of days ago I noticed that the third season premiere for HBO's 'Silicon Valley' had just aired. I had my expectations high, considering that the show had been pretty good last year and had provided solid entertainment.

I mean, it's not exactly a secret that during its second season the series improved quite a bit from its uneven first season. The series was now much more consistent and didn't suffer from as many flaws anymore.

So having now seen S3e01, 'Founder Friendly', I have to say that unfortunately the season premiere wasn't nearly as good as I expected it to be. There were a lot of problems with the episode ranging from bad storytelling to weird character behavior.

Probably the biggest problem I had with the season opener was that it didn't feel believable or organic in almost any way. It felt too much like I was watching a sketch show that didn't really know what it was trying to be.

Not only were there a lot of the scenes that didn't make much sense storywise, most of the characters didn't make sense either. I couldn't relate to what the characters were doing and it felt like they weren't likable at all.

Even the very first scene made me scratch my head, when our demoted main character Richard was only able to talk about himself.  That 'cold open' felt so out of character to me that it made me feel pretty nervous about the episode.

Unfortunately, it got only worse when Richard got to the meeting with his financiers. For some reason he simply couldn't understand that he had screwed up too many times as the CEO of his company and that they needed fresh blood.

It didn't also help that other characters were also unbearable in the episode. Dinesh and Gilfoyle for example were completely unlikable and 'sketchy' when they were talking about what would happen to them in Pied Piper.

I couldn't believe that after spending all that time in the firm, they couldn't take their situation more seriously and resorted to making 'jokes'. I couldn't believe that it was all about them and not about the company as a whole.

Yet, easily the worst thing about the episode was the scene with Hooli's CEO Gavin Belson giving his speech. This scene that was written as a faux-emotional sketch was so bad that it honestly made me pretty mad.

I mean, clearly the writers should have tried something else than misleading the audience after having had so many problems with the episode already. It didn't help at all that they were trying to be more clever than they were.

In any case, I'm not saying that there weren't any good things about Silicon Valley's season premiere. There were some jokes and moments that managed to work pretty well and that even managed to make me laugh.

At the same time, it was pretty clear that this was not a good episode as a whole. There were too many instances where it was clear that the story wasn't a priority and that the writers paid more attention to other things.

In the end, I can only hope that in the next episode they'll pay more attention to the story and the characters. In the long run, that's the only way you can make the series work and keep us interested in watching the show.

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