Good Government

I've mentioned before that until recently I haven't watched much television that wasn't animated or with furry monsters. That's what comes from having no time and small kids. Recently, however, we decided to ditch our premium cable channels and subscribe to Netflix. I cannot tell you want a different this has made. I've revisited old TV shows, caught up on movies I love, seen some I never had time to see in the first place, and I'm watching my way through some great documentaries.

Then Amazon decided to join the playing field when they added free instant viewing of TV and movies to the Prime Membership. Of course, there's some overlap with Netflix and Hulu but since I'm already paying for Prime I gave it a spin.

The first TV series that I've watched all the way through on Amazon was a season of Inspector Lewis including the episode Dark Matter. I was a huge fan of the Inspector Morse series and to know that Lewis gets his own chance now is great. Plus, it's fun to watch him be the master and pass along the wisdom he received from his mentor.

But as much as I loved Lewis I took a break because we found a great new show on network television. Yeah, it was a surprise to me, too.  If you're not watching Chicago Code then you're missing some seriously good television. I will say that if you're looking for a gritty cop drama about Chicago days of old then this isn't for you. This is a show about the way life could be - or maybe a better way to put it is that it's a show about the people who want their city cleaned up and what they have to do to get it that way. Oh, there's lots of good old Chicagoland politics along the way but this is a story about how life could be better and the challenges that everyone faces along the way.

I have no illusions that each episode of Chicago Code is going to end wrapped in a pretty ribbon but I do know that these are people who are trying very hard. Just like the characters in The State Within. This is a BBC production filmed almost entirely in DC and Florida it seems, with the main characters being the British ambassador to the US [Jason Isaacs] and the US Secretary of Defense [Sharon Gless]. It's only seven hours of drama and the poor British Ambassador has at least five people close to him [either in proximity or relation] die, he brokers peace talks, he tries to keep a man from lethal injection, he tries to tackle political corruption, and he tries to stop an international conflict. The first episode is hard to watch as it starts out with a plane exploding in DC due to a terrorist bomb but it's okay, the Ambassador is there to help. No, really, he is.

And while these shows couldn't be more different in some ways they are both similar in that the main characters believe that government and the people that work for those governments are supposed to be doing their best for the people and the slimy, corrupt people are the bad guys. It's still a good story with some good twists and turns and neither series has a pollyana attitude. So, give them a try. These are definitely good stories about people trying to make our world a better place..


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