Tuesday, December 15, 2020

The crush

I keep asking friends and family for recommendations of what to watch on telly. And they suggest series based on crime, or dark, unhappy relationship dramas, or gentle and interesting documentaries. None of these work for me right now. My way of coping with the pandemic is to read serious fiction and memoirs of the Blitz, but to watch comedy or easy drama with manageable levels of darkness. 

Virgin River on Netflix ticks that last box, but I am sheepish about recommending it to anyone, because it has serious weaknesses. 

This doesn't stop me watching. Nor does it stop me having a crush on Jack. I don't mean the actor, I mean the character. 

He's kind, gentle, practical, patient, respectful, loyal and sexy, and his voice goes low and husky when he's making passionate declarations to Mel, that would make me fall over if I wasn't lying in bed watching the prog on my iPad. He is utterly gorgeous. Oh my goodness. 

I like Mel, too. She's sensible, mature, feisty, intelligent and committed to her patients. And I like her style - she's beautiful, yes, but with a realistically rounded figure. She's not a stick thin bimbo. And she wears quiet, tasteful clothes that are stylish, yet suitable for the rugged terrain in and around Virgin River

When I first found this romantic drama in the spring I golloped it down and then went straight back and watched it all again. Now I'm doing the same with series 2. 

It's based on a series of books which I checked out, hoping I might want to read them. But no. I'd describe them as pulp fiction. Not good. The screenwriting in the drama is much better, but even so there are big holes in the plotting which whispered to me the first time I watched it and scream at me second time around. Still I watch it. The scenery is beautiful, I forgot to mention that. 

And there are a couple of other main characters who are attractive. I just wonder how anyone in Virgin River can tolerate Hope, who takes rudeness and interfering and selfishness to a new intolerable level. And yet the lovely older doctor is devoted to her. It makes no sense.

Enough of this. I think the reason I can overlook the weaknesses and find it so watchable is the attractiveness of the three main characters - Jack, Mel and the fabulous scenery. It's what I need before I settle down and switch off the light.
One night I might be lucky: Jack might join me in my dreams.


marmee said...

Ok so its confession time! I like the books! Was introduced to them when I lived on a tiny island off the Nigerian coast and books were in very short supply...and Sue, I prefer the plotting in the books but then I read the. books first and came to the tv series later so maybe its just that I am fond of what is deeply familiar. Several books and storylines have been conflated in the tv series. Still and all, I do enjoy the tv series! Guilty secrets!!

Anonymous said...

My pandemic viewing obsession was the complete series of The West Wing. Loved Jed and Leo and CJ and and and ! It was like the most beautiful fantasy at a time when the reality was shocking and painful Now I have finished 7 seasons, I miss it so much

Sue Hepworth said...

Aha! If you can read Virgin River, Marmee, it makes me feel better about my watching Neighbours!
I’d like to be able to read the books, I just couldn’t cope with the writing. I expect it is annoying if they’ve messed around with the narrative. What I’d like to know is...is Hope as annoying in the books as she is on screen. I can’t think why anyone puts up with her. She’s so annoying, and so rude. And why the Doc should love her is beyond me. He’s far too good for her.

Ana, I keep meaning to try the West Wing, and now I find it’s available to me on our Channel 4, so I’m going to check it out,

marmee said...

Oh look, the west Wing is in another universe ! So loved it, and thanks for the reminder , I would love to re visit! Sue, I think for me the writing becomes part of the whole ambience (!) and it seems to me that many of the character traits were if not exaggerated, more emphatic. But really the story lines in the books were very moving, quieter, much less drama. Thanks for this post sue, made me giggle AND laugh at myself for my shelf with secret pleasure schlock!

Sue Hepworth said...

But you haven’t said anything about Hope!

Susan D said...

Okay, I am always looking for something to sooth my soul on Netflix, and most attempts come up empty. So I will happily try Virgin River, plot holes and hopeless Hope included.

Sue Hepworth said...

Let us know what you think of it, Suaan.