Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Upcoming Upfronts

The May upfronts are soon, and the TV networks will announce what shows will survive to next season (that haven't already been renewed). I'm really hoping that both Castle and Sleepy Hollow get cancelled, because it's such a disgrace for them to write off their female leads like that. I think it's crazy to try to continue either show with all that fan backlash and already low ratings. But then again, in 1987 Valerie Harper got fired and killed off from her eponymous show, so what do I know about the crazy Hollywood business?

Anyway, I didn't like the 2nd episode of Houdini & Doyle as much, due to Houdini being such a jerk with his Truth Trade game. The attempts to make a romance between him and Constable Stratton were so clumsy and unnecessary too. Couldn't that have just remained a figment of her Scotland Yard boss's sexist imagination? Some viewers pointed out that in real life Houdini should be married now, but I think the show is taking liberties in many historical details. In real life Doyle's wife Touie was not "unresponsive for the last six months" in 1901. She was sick, definitely, and sometimes had to live away from home to improve her health, but I don't think she was comatose or paralyzed yet. Even near the end in 1906, she was apparently conscious and lucid enough that she spoke to her daughter Mary about Doyle probably going to get remarried in the future; Touie seemed to know about Jean Leckie. I'm still not sure whether the show is ever going to broach the subject of Jean Leckie.

The case involved a boy shooting a suffragette, while claiming that she murdered him in his past life. Stratton and Houdini exchanged some comments about suffragettes and feminism, but Doyle was more reticent I think. When they solved the mystery at the end, I found the reveal of the boy's birth parents too farfetched and bizarre. But maybe that convenient coincidence was deliberate, along with other unexplained stuff like the boy knowing where the body was buried, as a clue from the writers that Doyle was right about spirit guides or something.

Anyway, in the episode, Doyle was having problems with his daughter Mary not going to school, for "housewifery" classes. I think that's rather strange, as I thought Victorian housewives of a certain class didn't actually do cooking/cleaning themselves, but merely supervised the household servants doing those chores. So why would a girl like Mary be in such a school in the first place? Wouldn't a girl of her class be learning art, music, embroidery, and other ladylike hobbies, if Doyle didn't believe in educating girls like boys? The episode was too vague and unclear about Doyle's opinion about feminism. Sure, the show is set before the 1909 incident where some suffragettes sabotaged his mailbox in revenge for him making an anti-suffragette speech. But we don't even get a hint about Doyle being opposed to the violence of the suffragette movement at all.

I guess I gotta learn to let go of historical details, since this is just glorified real person fanfiction about these two men. I hope later episodes will be less annoying.

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