Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Rescue Me (TV)

I was one of those guys that didn't think that Denis Leary's comedy wasn't all that great. His stand up was kind of over the top and I just didn't really get into it. I also thought that his TV show about firemen who lost some colleagues in 9/11 would be just sort of lame and not good. Well, I am halfway into season 2 of Rescue Me and I am enthralled. This show portrays the lives of one house of FDNY firefighters closer to reality than I could imagine possible. The firehouse is loaded with seemingly stereotypical ''macho men," perpetually worried about how many "broads" they'd each banged and the details of each encounter therein. On first glance they are immature, lazy, and stupid but admittedly dedicated to their job and saving people's lives. The brilliance of the show is taking these seemingly stereotypical characters and giving you the full picture of their lives, their motivations and ultimately getting down to the truth of each of them. Denis Leary's character is of course the standout and the series' main character. I am constantly re-surprised at his acting range and abilities and how perfect he is as the hard-drinking, kick-ass, smart-ass, lying-ass Tommy Gavin.  I don't think I'll trust my judgement on actors and shows that I haven't seen ever again. Though his role doesn't overshadow some of the interesting sideplots of the other firefighters. The heft of the series deals with the families of said firefighters, their wives children and in some cases ex-wives and ex-children. All of the characters in the show, from the extended family to the victims of various fires, are well written and none of their interactions between each other and the world at large seem disingenuous. They are breathing, laughing, sweating, screwing, bleeding and in some cases dying people. Some are brothers, half-brothers brothers in arms and brothers for life. Most are flawed and human but all are funny. It is a drama first and foremost, but the humor in the show is so funny because it is totally organic. It's like slipping and falling on your ass on the wet pavement while walking to your car. Your ass is wet and you're hurting but you still laugh because you just have to. Nothing will be able to stop me from taking this show to its conclusion. I have 3 more seasons to go and I am very excited for it. I'm glad I didn't watch it until now so I don't have to wait months and months for the next season to come out. I just pop the next disc in. 

Honestly: 9.5 out of 10

Genre: Drama, Family, Firefighters, Comedy, 

In the Same Ballpark: Six Feet Under, Weeds, United States of Tara, Breaking Bad, Brothers and Sisters 

Somewhat Related: The Shield, The Sopranos, Dirty Sexy Money

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