Halt and Catch Fire: 1984
August 3, 2014 8:15 PM - Season 1, Episode 10 - Subscribe

Joe looks toward the future
posted by drezdn (21 comments total)
This, the show that caused me to yell at my husband "you didn't marry a CHEERLEADER, you know!" when he mansplained a "hey, they're gonna reference the Ridley Scott Mac commercial" reference last week-ish -- I'm so done.

Did anyone NOT see the truck thing happening?

Did anyone else's spouse say "you're hearing that, too, right? I'm not having a stroke, am I?" when he gave her the ring?

Some Kind of Wonderful........oops, I'm sorry, CAMERON, did she bring that spray paint back from Comdex or did she buy a new can to make the Mutiny sign?

I don't know, you guys. I should love the hell out of this show and yet it is just so pat in so many ways. Every time it seems to be getting good, it goes to hell. It's like a Choose Your Own Adventure nostalgia scrapbook for aging Gen Xers, damn it. Please tell me I'm not the only one feeling this way. So conflicted!
posted by bitter-girl.com at 9:53 PM on August 3, 2014 [2 favorites]

I'm glad they could dredge up a whole second black guy for Joe to talk to.
posted by Small Dollar at 10:44 PM on August 3, 2014 [2 favorites]

I've really liked HCF in the last few weeks (the penultimate one was as good as a Mad Men episode), but I have no problem with the show ending here and now. The characters and setting existed to tell the story they had, and another season risks what happened with Veronica Mars.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 11:00 PM on August 3, 2014 [1 favorite]

Joe's insane flailing this episode really washed away all that good will they built up with the two finally-decent previous episodes.

I mean it wasn't ALL Joe's fault... Donna becoming a couch potato stoner overnight, the programmers all vanishing at exactly the right time, the carjacking... MAN, the writers left themselves such a laundry list of things they wanted to get done in short order.

But yeah I think ending the previous episode with the Mac and then clobbering us with the totally clumsy 1984 commercial scene was maybe the biggest insult. That's some network TV crap, man.
posted by SharkParty at 6:30 AM on August 4, 2014 [1 favorite]

What a weird-ass series.
I can't wait to find out what behind the scenes chaos caused a program to oscillate so violently from good to bad.
posted by fullerine at 7:06 AM on August 4, 2014 [5 favorites]

Or to put it another way, someone writing for that show was very talented.
posted by fullerine at 7:07 AM on August 4, 2014 [3 favorites]

I quite seriously have no fucking idea why Joe burned the truck, or why no one seemed to be talking about it afterward, or what the deal with the observatory was (AV Club says maybe his mom works there?). I was half-convinced that they were going to pull a "Joe never really existed" moment at the last second.
posted by Etrigan at 11:24 AM on August 4, 2014 [2 favorites]

The old man at the gas station said something about a woman who lives up by the observatory, who sounded cantankerous and hermit-like.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 12:54 PM on August 4, 2014

From what I remember, Joe had recently found out that his mom was still alive. That's gotta be it. As for the truck blow-upping...yeah, what the hell?
posted by destructive cactus at 1:10 PM on August 4, 2014

Oh holy night... I didn't even think of the mommy-quest angle. That is slitheringly low story writing!
posted by SharkParty at 2:02 PM on August 4, 2014

I can't believe the people behind this are planning another season, or that there are people who claim this is "well written" and "so much better than Mad Men" except those people seem to be frothing about baud rates and how it "speaks to their personal experience."

It's like people raving about an old song because they remember it or talking about how smart and brave someone they find attractive is. Holy crap balls, anything I found salvageable about this show has been obliterated by people who "LOVE" this show.

I have no problem saying I like a crappy song because of one good line or note progression, or a trashy show or book because of some lone element; it doesn't have to become THE BEST THING EVAR that needs defending like the core of one's being, but then, that's the thing, isn't it, why this is such an easy target audience.

Ugh, I'm having flashbacks of every socially disabled interaction I tolerated only to find no redeeming qualities to unearth, at best. That whole social anxiety that prevents one from getting to know different people helps preserve the illusion of "special genius" that deflates instantly at the first prod of outside information.

If this show gets renewed when so many good shows get axed, it will be uglier than that decoder ring.
posted by provoliminal at 10:11 PM on August 4, 2014

The killer app they needed was Microfocus COBOL.
posted by Obscure Reference at 6:08 AM on August 5, 2014 [2 favorites]

Are people saying that? I'm not being sarcastic or contrarian, I just literally haven't seen a single person talk about how they love the show. Or even like it that much, at least not without some pretty heavy reservations.
posted by Ian A.T. at 8:18 AM on August 5, 2014

I wouldn't mind a second season if they focused on Mutiny.
posted by drezdn at 6:39 PM on August 14, 2014

It's sad to think that whatever happens to Joe on his trek will lead to him becoming an Accuser for the Kree.
posted by drezdn at 9:30 PM on August 14, 2014 [3 favorites]

I wouldn't mind a second season if they focused on Mutiny.
Yeah but that would be a couple of episodes written by mystery good writer interspersed with an eye-wateringly bad sub-plot about lesbians or something.

(Which will then be utterly ignored for the rest of the series.)

I think it's best if they focus their energies on finding out who wasn't the suck in the whole thing and giving them all the money.
posted by fullerine at 3:09 AM on August 15, 2014

AMC has picked up a second season.
posted by Etrigan at 11:48 AM on August 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

posted by drezdn at 1:14 PM on August 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

It looks like the first episode of season 2 is streaming on the AMC site, no cable login required, through September.
posted by Pronoiac at 7:43 PM on June 4, 2015

Just watched the first episode of season 2, and it really is better than the entire first season. Thise who are conflicted, give it a watch! I think (hope) you'll like it. And Toby Huss is back!
posted by flyingsquirrel at 4:59 PM on June 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

There is no way someone is using the term "Killer App" in 1983-4.

Wildly uneven season, but it certainly improves over the course of its run.
posted by absalom at 9:43 PM on March 15, 2017

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