Deadly Class: Pilot
January 17, 2019 6:10 PM - Season 1, Episode 1 - Subscribe

I've never read the comics this was adapted from, not sure if this is my bag. There were some cool visuals - the snippets of animation, the vision of Reagan climbing out of the television screen - but I was pretty checked out throughout the episode, and I don't know if I'll continue watching the rest of the season.
posted by oh yeah! at 6:22 PM on January 17, 2019

The 80's music in this is perfect. It's like the whole subgenre 80's dark new wave music was written to score a tv show about a high school that exists to train psychopathic killers. A lot of great intersections in this show - goth, camp, 80's, martial arts, etc. Also, what highschooler hasn't occasionally felt like all their classmates are trying to kill them? :-)
posted by xammerboy at 9:50 PM on January 20, 2019

I'm a little bit weirded out by Den of Geek's attribution that the show's premise is 'unique.' This is pretty standard stuffs of adolescent wish fulfillment, ticking off a bunch of highschool-/ secret society-/ prison- tropes and a lot of stereotypes/ cliches.

It's fun-ish, though, but a little too adolescent for me. Might give e02 a try, see if they do anything interesting and whether they double down on the 80's stereotypes (and all the other 80's flavoured stereotypes) or try to subvert them. I don't have high hopes.

I hated 'The Magicians' (novels - one of few books I dropped after getting at least half way in) and hard passed on the show. But I might need to track down the comics for 'Deadly Class' - I wonder how divergent the show is from the comics versus how completely divergent 'Wanted' (the movie - which I have deeply conflicted feelings about) was compared to the comics.

Yeah xammerboy! I kind of liked the score (music) - used a lot of 80's techniques but pulled riffs from hit early 90's songs. I noticed at least one Nirvana tribute, and a few more that felt super familiar but I can't name.
posted by porpoise at 8:29 PM on January 23, 2019

Porpoise, you might want to give The Magicians the show a try. Season one was rough (animal torture, rape, a lot of general unpleasantness) but they got so much better in S2 & S3. It’s become one of my favorite current shows. I haven’t read the books, so I don’t know if what made you drop the book is part of the show, but as far as I know the show completely diverged from the book plot at some point, and we’re in uncharted territory now. Threads are up for every episode if you want spoilers.
posted by oh yeah! at 1:39 PM on January 24, 2019 [1 favorite]

With all due respect to your impeccable tastes, but I thought that all the characters in the novels were vile little shits. But thanks for the nudge! I watched s01e01 - the show has super solid production values.

The pilot's a little better than the novels, but I have a personal antipathy with discussing/ examining this particular aspect of 'social mobility/ class' having kind of seen it from both sides.

While both 'The Magicians' and 'Deadly Class' are similarly a little adolescent for me, now, the slightly more "punk" 'Deadly Class' is less offensive of the two. Yeah - I'm a certified curmudgeon these days.

The whole conceit that 'The Magicians' is Graduate School rankles - especially if Lev Grossman's unfinished PhD candidacy in Comparative Literature informed his portrayal of grad school; double curmudgeon of me coming from a STEM MSc/PhD - where, Hell Yeah!, some of us got bench magic ("hands," detailed techniques requiring a degree of "art," like chefs at celebrated restaurants) to happen for us on the regular enough to call it science.

For a "kids doing magic and everything going to Hell (literally)" story with lots of backstabbing and betrayals and love (and lust) and wtf-ery (and a commentary on Christianity), I'm a huge, huge fan of Richard Kadry's 'Sandman Slim' series of novels.

Another entry in the "urban magic" genre, Jim Butcher's 'The Dresden Files' had a single season show with Paul Blackthorne that wasn't terrible.
posted by porpoise at 5:09 PM on January 26, 2019

but I thought that all the characters in the novels were vile little shits.

Ah, makes sense. I think that falls under the 'general unpleasantness' umbrella of so much of Magicians S1 - hazing, adolescent romantic conflicts, Brakebills magic school snobbery versus hedge witch magic, etc. In later seasons there's more time spent outside of the school environment, the characters gain some maturity, and the show has had some really standout 'concept' episodes.

Another entry in the "urban magic" genre, Jim Butcher's 'The Dresden Files' had a single season show with Paul Blackthorne that wasn't terrible.

Yeah, I enjoyed that one. One of these days I'll have to give the dvds a rewatch.
posted by oh yeah! at 6:56 PM on January 26, 2019 [1 favorite]

My comment recommending 'The Magicians' just popped up into my Recent Activity, so, in case anyone ever comes to this thread again, I strongly retract my recommendation. The writers did something so cruel to the audience and their cast at the end of season 4 that it was a retroactive show-killer; I rage-quit and will be avoiding anything by those show runners in future.
posted by oh yeah! at 12:56 PM on March 1, 2021

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