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The Last Ship (TNT)

Gaith

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LastShipSeriesIntertitle.jpg

Well, now that the first season's over and a second season is coming (next summer... sigh), it's time for a thread on TNT's terrific two-fisted adventure show The Last Ship.

We just got two great new cast members in Alfre Woodard and Titus Welliver! And my half-joking prediction that the season would end with some of the plague corpses coming back as zombies has proved groundless... so far.

At least next season will have 13 eps, compared to this one's 10.

See you all on the high seas! Or in Baltimore. Which continues to be a craphole. Some places just can't catch a break!
 

Captain Khajiit

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I quite enjoyed the first season. It's been said that the ship should be called the USS Schmaltz though. :)
 

bionicbob

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season two trailer....

 

Gaith

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Um... so, I don't have anything particularly deep to say here or anything, apart from that this show continues to kick all kinds of ass. Hooyah! :-D
 

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Anyone else watching this third season? Last week's episode was so epic, and ended on such a big cliffhanger, that I had to double-check it wasn't the finale. (And, hooyah, the show's already been renewed for a fourth season.) Even when the effects budget isn't all there, the writers certainly haven't been afraid to tell a big, sprawling story, and this year's co-Big Bad has been the Chinese head of state in a way a major-budget action movie wouldn't dream of attempting these days. (Maybe it's producer Michael Bay atoning for kissing up to the Party in Transformers 4?) We've also gotten more politics in general this season, with lots of screen time spent in and around the St. Louis White House, a move that allows for both cheap, talky indoor filming and a bigger, more expansive story. (Another fun bit: the Chinese government HQ building was also used for a similarly Asian-themed location on an Agents of SHIELD ep last season.)

In short, good stuff all around, and I'm definitely intrigued to see what kind of bigger-stakes Big Bad they come up with next season. There may not be masked vigilantes with code names, but in terms of storytelling, this is a 100% serialized genre show with sci-fi elements that blows the storytelling of Arrow S3-4 out of the water, no pun intended. And it's one hell of a ride.
 

bionicbob

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Somehow I always miss the first run of this show.... just finished binging season three and now PVRing season four.

This is an excellent show!  Solid plotting, great characters, excellent action pacing and best of all, it has a real strong emotional core.  Yes, it is a Michael Bay production, so it has that slick, polished look but is million times better written than any Bay movie.  
It may be a bit schmaltzy... it is very John Wayne in all the best ways possible -- it is earnest and heartfelt.  I often get the FEELS while watching.  It works as a fun adventure series but also has a great deal of substance and social commentary.  In some respects, it has an old skool Star Trek vibe to it.  In fact, I hope the new series Discovery emulates this series more than Game of Thrones the way producers have been promoting it.

Time to start season four....
http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s647PzJFuPk[/video]
 

bionicbob

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Little more than a week til the return of this underrated action/adventure gem...

http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzpY0weHPVc[/video]

LOVE THIS SHOW!!!

Season four was a bit weaker, the restraints of its smaller budget really shown through this previous season.  But still, lots a solid character beats and wonderfully edited action.   Still better than most big screen blockbusters.

Being the final season, hopefully these endearing characters get the proper send off they deserve. :)
 

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Am currently rewatching the show (just started S2) in preparation for my first viewing of last year's S4. :)
 

bionicbob

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The NATHAN JAMES is back, baby!!!

Great season premiere.... solid, economical storytelling quickly brings the audience up to speed after a 3 year time jump and sets up the threat for the remainder of the final season.  We lose some beloved shipmates in a Pearl Harbour-style attack (FEELS!!!) and once again, the Nathan James is the Last Ship -- going off the grid, searching for food and ammunition, in its quest to save the Free World.

As always the perfect balance of schmaltz and earnestness, without becoming too jingoistic.  

After rewatching seasons 1-4 in preparation of this final season, I have come to the conclusion that this is one of best produced adventure shows in the last decade or more.  Truly an under rated gem of a show.  (much like THE EXPANSE..)

A nice behinds the scenes featurette I think my fellow editors will appreciate.   Can anyone identify the Editing Program they are using...?
http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWLxruiDRJ0&t=127s[/video]

This show has some amazing TV to Movie fan edit potential.
 

bionicbob

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http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nc1ADEU9oB8[/video]

It seems somehow appropriate that the NATHAN JAMES went to Davey Jone's locker on November 11th.

A solid, riveting finale which expertly hit all the right emotional buttons and left this viewer feeling very satisfied.   Though, as with most Last Ship episodes, it is only after the ride is over and you take a moment to think about what you watched that you begin to see the many plot holes lol.  And there are many, many plot holes throughout the series and in this finale particular.  But you know what?  I don't care.  It was a great ride!   And I stand by my claim that this is one of the best adventure shows television has produced in last decade.

It is amazing what this show achieved.  Each new season the producers raised the stakes and scale, while their budget clearly decreased.  It forced them to tell their stories economically and strategically.   There is no filler in this series, it all story and plot, which constantly moves and evolves.   And it is all grounded with an amazing cast of characters that you can not help but like, care about and root for.


The final season was not perfect.   It was too Chandler-centric.   Almost all the rest of the cast has no significant arc, though if you have watched since season one, each one does get a moment to shine and bow.  The villains were under developed and Chandler's white whale quest, while it does have a pay off, it is not what the audience expects.

It was a very entertaining final season.   And unlike many shows of this era, it is highly rewatchable.

I give the series as a whole an A-,
and the final season a solid B

What did you think @"Gaith" ?
 

Gaith

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bionicbob said:
Season four was a bit weaker, the restraints of its smaller budget really shown through this previous season.  But still, lots a solid character beats and wonderfully edited action.   Still better than most big screen blockbusters.

Finally finished S4 myself. It got off to a bit of a rough start, with two low-budget eps that relied far too much on fistfights that felt gratuitous (even though they were narratively justified later), but then really picked up steam, and Peter Weller made for an awesome antagonist. My only real complaint is that they never even tried to appeal to all those poor Greek sailors they mowed down.

Looking forward to a final cruise!
 

bionicbob

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Gaith said:
Looking forward to a final cruise!

While I loved the final season, it is not without its flaws.  
Way too Chandler-centric to the detriment of the rest of the cast.
The story is even bigger but the budget feels even smaller.
And of course, the usual plot holes.


But it was still a great ride and remains one of my all time favourite tv adventure shows.
 

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Okay, finished S5/the series, so time for some final thoughts! In a mostly solid final season, despite the budget cutbacks, we got an absolutely outstanding third-to-last episode (the siege of the home base), and then... a meh fart of an ending, I'm afraid. The many scenes of the Colombian villains bickering ended up going absolutely nowhere, with the most interesting character on that front (the uncertain second-in-command) being unceremoniously dumped at the eleventh hour. We didn't even get the unexpected thrill of the devious wife taking over; she ends up a simpering mess. And the constant switching between Spanish and English during said scenes really got on my nerves. Either have the balls to do whole conversations in Spanish, or have the actors speak English and let us assume the camera is translating for us. But the mish-mash and constant, arbitrary switching was just plain maddening.

As for the finale, the amphibious landing sequence was kinda cool, albeit marred by a pointless new reporter character, but it couldn't match 5.7's Cuba battle for tactics and intensity. That ordeal, which dominated its episode, was damned convincing (apart from our heroes apparently having zero artillery which which to shell the enemy tower over a period of days), and it built to a great reveal of the replica command center. But the beach landing should have taken place in the penultimate episode, not the last one. (And, unless I'm much mistaken, Diaz, the Lost Boy turned Sailor, appears as an apparently living member of the movie-watching audience in the penultimate ep, despite having been killed off earlier in the season?! And then shows up with his fellow ghosts in the finale's mystical coda?!)

 
bionicbob said:
Way too Chandler-centric to the detriment of the rest of the cast.

I had this comment in mind for the whole season, but didn't agree until the finale. In the end, the enemy battleship gets taken out by... a sinking Nathan James hitting it in the side? WTF?! Another loose end that should have been tied up (and sunk!) in the classic Last Ship game of cat-and-mouse during the penultimate ep.

As for the ending itself, while it was nice to see a few familiar/fallen faces in Davy Jones' Locker (yay, Tex!), I would far rather have seen our heroes come home, and get a farewell with each other, their families, the current president, etc. Though not as blatantly unsatisfying and abrupt an ending as that of Star Trek: Voyager, I was reminded of its sudden conclusion, and that's not a good thing. Master Chief Jeter, who lost his family before the plague, had definitely earned a thoughtful send-off, as did Slattery. And I can't disagree with Jocko "Burk" Sims' observation that too many POC characters were killed off, leaving most of the remaining white guys standing.

Overall, I love the series (A-, easy), and am glad I stuck with it 'til the end. Due to a weak ending, however, I've got to give S5 a B-. I'd recommend Seasons 1-3 to anyone, and wouldn't discourage anyone from continuing on to 4-5, but I wouldn't urge viewers to power through them, either. In conclusion, it's been a great ride, with an amazing cast, mostly great writing, and a unique focus on tactics and expertise. It's a shame it didn't maintain its outstanding quality to the very end, but the Nathan James and its crew absolutely deserve an Honorable Discharge and a proud legacy in our memory. That is all. :cool:
 
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