Saturday, July 12, 2014
Watch The Bridge With Me This Summer. Please.
Season 2 of The Bridge started on Wednesday. I watched Season 1 last summer, and it was a delight. Well, okay not a delight--it is a dark and unforgiving show, just like the desert it's set in. Numerous people get killed in gruesome ways furthering the plot, but those deaths aren't titillating. Real events and news form the backbone of this story, and well if there's a weirdo serial killer hanging around, at least he's got a serious socio-political message.
And Lyle Lovett appears in several episodes, at one point carrying a three bean salad that's not a three bean salad, if you know what I mean. So while the first episode maybe didn't hook me, my 25 year crush on Lyle Lovett* kept me watching that second episode and after that I was devoted. I'm devoted because I like character driven dramas with incredibly twisty plots, sly touches of humor and excellent acting, and dialogue that dips in and out of English and Spanish appropriately.
To slightly recap season 1 (no spoilers, just the basics)--one night the lights go out on the bridge that separates El Paso, TX and Juarez, Mexico. When the lights come back on, there's a woman's body left in the middle of the bridge, half in each country. It turns out there's two half bodies switched, which brings police detectives Sonya Cross** and Marco Ruiz together to work the case. Also on that bridge was the car of local journalist Daniel Frye, local socialite Charlotte Millwright with her husband in an ambulance, and local weirdo/social worker Steven Linder, who has a woman in his trunk.
And from them it picks up strands of the drug trade, the prostitution trade, the missing women of Juarez, corruption in the Mexican police, smuggled migrants, and tells the story of what's going on with these characters and the symbiotic American relationship between America and Mexico. It's streaming on Hulu and Netflix at the moment, and the DVDs were released last month.
I was disappointed Matthew Lilliard (formerly best know as Shaggy from the Scooby-Do remake 10+ years ago)as reporter Daniel Frye didn't get an Emmy nod as he is fantastic in the role of a hardcore, functional addict whose journalistic brilliance is just managing to save everyone from giving up on him, kicking him in the ribs and leaving him in the gutter beside the taco stand. You understand why Adriana Mendez (another good performance by Emily Rios) sticks with him, and their actual friendship is refreshing.
Let me tell you, I would watch the spinoff where Daniel Frye and Adriana Mendez hangout and investigate and report on anything, a la State of Play (aka the fantastic British series that is the best thing about smart people thinking, writing and modern journalism that I have ever seen). Considering season 1 ends with them involved in the most local heartwarming story of a local 100 year old woman's birthday gone bad, I think we can look forward to this. Or maybe if we get Season 3, Adriana will do something on Mexican DIY abortion pill usage in Texas, considering what's gone on there in the last year.
So in case you also live in a place where it's too damn hot to leave the house (110 today!)give The Bridge a shot and come leave comments and let's talk and dissect.
*My other 25 year crush is on Henry Rollins. Make of this what you will.
**I promise, before season 2 is over I will deliver my epic Sonya Cross/Asperger's/superpower rant. Maybe multiple times.