Creating a less limited Limitless

It is the time of year where we inevitably have to wonder about the new shows we have come to love. Limitless is that show this year and the question of course on everyones mind is should it come back for round two?

The easy answer is yes. The more complicated thought is that not every show has done enough to warrant a second season. Limitless has done quite a bit during its rookie run, but the issue is that it has been relatively too simple minded for a show with such a name as limitless.

The only episodes of Limitless that have really got me thinking are the ones that Bradley Cooper has guest starred in. That is because the episodes usually delve deeper than the FBI and the day to day proceedings.

The cast are incredibly talented and play their often typical characters well. I have enjoyed the small things Limitless has done well but ultimately it is not a show that if it was not on I would miss like crazy.

That being said it still sucks seeing a show you have invested time in hit the chopping block. So if Limitless was to come back for a second go around there are things I would like to see happen.

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1) Brian outside of the FBI. The FBI narrows down the plot and only allows for a case of the week type plot. If they made it a show that continued a weaving narrative from week to week it force people to tune and not feel like it was skip able.

2) Maybe even have less focus on Brian and more focus on NZT. Without the drug there is no show and without a show we the viewers have nothing. NZT has the ability to change the world but so far we have seen Brian take NZT by day and smoke weed by night.

3) Forget the comedic inserts of Cat gifs and dog videos when Brian is doing something “boring”. It makes the show seem Childish and less focused on the dramatic ways NZT can change someones perspectives.

4) Stop with the convenient Eddie Morra drops in and have Brian expose him. Clearly the FBI and Eddie are two separate entities both with ways to get NZT. So because the FBI has not figured out Morra is on NZT means they are clearly unaware of his major connection too it.

5) Bring in the desperation factor. Have it affect Brian in more ways. Right now he is essentially the perfect human being. He can take NZT by day and crack any case the FBI needs him too and by night he can appear seemingly normal to his family and friends outside the FBI.

The biggest concern at this point is that Limitless has had too much of a ratings dip for it to come back for a sophomore season. It actually would be a shame if it didn’t. I always thought the idea behind NZT was a fantastic one. It has serious implications on break throughs and would also bring serious changes to the mind of someone teetering on evil doings.

That is what the film never touched on. That is what the TV show has only made implications of. Limitless has been dark at times but ultimately Brian is too much of a farce for this show to be taken completely seriously. It doesn’t know when to be comedic and when to be dramatic. It always tries whole heatedly to do both in the same episode and sometimes that just does not work.

Most shows get away with the odd joke. Most shows know what they are and know which characters can make the joke and have the audience be comfortable with it. Limitless has never felt comfortable with it’s characters. It has never allowed them to have their own personalities.

Limitless is too far into season one to correct these faults. That is why the only way to fix these issues would be to have a second season. Brian needs to stop feeling like a goof and the FBI needs to feel more than one dimensional.

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The R Rated World of Deadpool

With the ever changing landscape of Comic book films it begs the question; How many of those films should be rated R?

Deadpool is not breaking new ground by having that rating, it is just the most popular film to have it.

With that being said the most complicated thing about an R rating is that you are automatically limiting the amount of people who can view the film. That means as a producer one must contemplate are the 18-45 demo going to bring in enough profit.

Profit is large factor in the ultimate success of any film or television series. Except comic book films have a factor that is already a built in contributor to the films eventual rating and that is source material. Same with any film based on a novel. We already have ideas of how we want it to look.

Deadpool is probably the first comic book film that benefited from having a hard R rating and not budging on that. It allowed Deadpool to run his mouth and not have it sound filtered and unrealistic. Sometimes the ramblings were the furthest thing from comedic but that is who the character is. He talks out his thoughts. He is known as the Merc with the Mouth and that is definitely explored in this film.

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Ryan Reynolds is the man to thank for the continuous push to have Deadpool rated R. There has been much backlash about kids wanting to see Deadpool. It is quite violent and seeing that display on the big screen could damage kids who are not fully developed. The last thing we need are kids thinking hurting someone is funny and cool because Deadpool did it. There are traumatic themes in Deadpool such as PTSD, Schizophrenic tendencies and unrelenting torture. These darker themes will go over the heads of children and they will just laugh at Deadpool drawing himself with a crayon and the absurdity of the music being played.

Reynolds explored the darker side of Wade Wilson, his desire for revenge despite being told numerous times killing is wrong. Deadpool is downright hilarious at times but it is the best Marvel movie yet because it can combine both the darker elements and well timed humour about how it is the quite similar to other marvel productions. In the end Deadpool is merely the story of a man wanting his one true love back and that does make for some hilarious jokes a long the way.

I think every one of the actors did a fantastic job and the opening credits did a good job identifying them. TJ Miller was the secondary comedian who easily cracked jokes and brought a lighter approach to the films tone. Morena Baccarin and Ryan Reynolds had tremendous chemistry and brought out the albeit scripted cheese factor and made it awesome. There were some clever jokes delivered by most of the cast members and it helped solidify Deadpool as the most rounded Marvel production yet.

Comic books adaptations have a much better chance of being successful if story is the focus. So many people want to see R rated versions of their favorite heroes and villains when a PG13 rating can suffice with a proper adaptation.

Because the R rating worked so perfectly for Deadpool that does not mean it will work the same way for every Comic book film going forward. It is a huge decision to give any film an R rating because you need to believe that your target audience will see it regardless. The only way they will is if you give them the story they are asking for and only worry about rating classification once the screenplay has been perfected.

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Walking Dead: The good, the bad and the dying narrative

The Walking Dead has enjoyed immense success because of the strong characters and even crazier scenarios that they find themselves in. Despite the success Walking Dead seems to be struggling with one thing and that is killing off some of its big time players.

I have been a huge fan since day one and one of my favorite things about this show was that no one felt safe and that at any given moment we could be witnessing our favorite survivor fall victim to the undead. During the early stages it felt like one wrong move could spell instant peril for the entire group.

Since the prison story line it has felt like even the bad decisions these characters make just leads to another decision to learn and make it right somewhere else. Perhaps that is the intended message of the last 2 seasons. Perhaps the greater message of this show is that we need to forgive ourselves for our actions if we do it in the name of survival. If that is the intended message then I feel like they are cheating us what they originally promised. The producers promised us an unrelenting attempt at survival but that meant us connecting with people just to have them ripped away.

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Remember Dale? Remember Lori? Remember T-Dogg? Remember Shane? Remember Beth? Remember Herschel? Remember when each one of those characters had full progression and did not just blow things up to get out of the latest pinch.

When I talk about Walking Dead I always bring up Season 2 and there is a definite reason for that. It painted a morally ambiguous villain in Shane. He did the wrong things for all the right reasons and was the very first person to see how dangerous the living could become and that all happened within his own head.

The Walking Dead has always posted posters and trailer with the tagline “No One is Safe”. Except lately that seems like no one is safe unless your name is Rick, Daryl, Glenn, Maggie, Carol, Carl, Abraham or Morgan. With Negan coming it should all but solidify that not just one but at least two of the characters mentioned above should join the cast of the living dead before the season is out. I am not holding my breath for a game changing season finale because that is what they have promised the last 3 seasons and I have been left disappointed because it was nothing but extreme build up.

This show at times has become too focused on the brand and how to maintain the large audience. Which I understand is important, but they lost focus on the most important thing of all and that is delivering quality entertainment for those who have been fans of The Walking Dead long before it ever graced our television screens.