Girls Write Out
Tuesday, September 07, 2010
I have long been a major fan of the television show, Monk, which recently completed its final season. Since Mel and I chose not to have cable television many years ago, we have rented our television DVDs through the mail, so we carefully select what we watch. I'm always looking for new, clean, intelligent television shows to order on Netflix, and we love Monk. It doesn't give me nightmares, which is always a good thing. It is also funny at times, heart-touching at times, and the characters keep it a whole lot cleaner than most shows we've seen lately. Monk's tragic-funny personality has revealed some of the struggles, pain and trials of those affected by obsessive-compulsive disorder. No, it doesn't go far enough to show the deepest parts of this tragic malady, but then it wouldn't be funny, it would just be heartbreaking.

Two things I have to watch out for are sex and violence on TV--not just shoot 'em-up violence, but detective shows, like NCIS--which we also love, by the way--which reveal far too much graphic detail for me. Mel, of course, can watch anything he wants, and he doesn't think he has nightmares. Since he doesn't remember his dreams, I don't know how he can tell. But since he deals with blood and gore and death and the underbelly of life at work, I guess he either has to shut it all off or go crazy. Since Monk is not a medical show, Mel is less vociferous about whether or not they've gotten the details right--never watch a true medical show with someone who works in the field. Crystal can attest to this, I know.

For me, the crux of a good show is the characterization, not necessarily the plot, although both are important. I don't care how well-detailed a plot is for a show, however, if I don't like the characters, I could not care less what happens to them. Like Colleen, I'm a Trekkie, and we've watched almost every Star Trek episode and movie available. Long live Spock! Data's a favorite, as well as Bones, Kirk, Captain Picard...and on and on. I remember actually having a crush on Chekov when I was a young teen. THAT is how long Star Trek has been popular.

As I said, NCIS is also a favorite because of the characters. Granted, I have to watch it with Mel's guidance because I close my eyes during the gory parts, and he has to tell me when I can look again. That's what I call a good marriage.

Despite some harsh--sometimes very harsh--language in two of our favorite shows, the older Becker, and House, make me laugh and nod my head. Both shows, because of the irascible main characters, are able to address many Christian themes without a great deal of harassment from viewers, because the main characters are outspoken about their lack of belief. I love how they do that. I'm looking forward to seeing if House continues to have those startling "aha" moments it has had in past seasons. We're still waiting on Season 6 to come out.

Any suggestions? I'm always looking for a new series to order and watch, something clean and funny without offending my intelligence or my values. Do you have any favorites?

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Hannah Alexander  
posted at 11:52 PM  
  Comments (23)
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At 7:29 AM, Blogger Denise Hunter said...

My favorite two series are Castle and Parenthood. Castle for the romance--although there's a crime to be solved also. And Parenthood for the laugh out loud reality of family life. Can't wait for both of them to kick off for the season!

At 8:27 AM, Blogger Ruth said...

Oh, Monk's a fun show. I have to recommend another USA Network show though - White Collar! Smart, funny, suspenseful, and stylish - I love it!

At 9:23 AM, Blogger Lori said...

Denise - I really like both of those shows you mentioned too. I bet Castle would definitely appeal to Cheryl. Parenthood starts up again next Tuesday!

At 9:45 AM, Blogger Suzanne said...

I've been fairly pleased with Castle so far. There was only one episode that I was uncomfortable with. I'll keep watching it as long as the Holy Spirit doesn't tell me to quit (as He's done with most other tv).

At 11:08 AM, Blogger Deena said...

CASTLE!!! My son 'made' me watch an episode with him and I'm HOOKED! The wit, the humor, the twists and turns...and the chemistry between all of the's a wonderful show!

We also like USA network shows like "Covert Affairs" (a spy thriller) and "White Collar" (FBI chasing down art thieves etc.). Both are fun and no gore, little if any language (so far).

Everything else I love to watch would most likely give you nightmares:-(

At 11:50 AM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Okay, Denise, I've been wondering about Parenthood. Now that it has your seal of approval, I'll order the older seasons. Castle--we've watched every show on DVD so far. Thanks!

At 11:51 AM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Ruth and Deena, thank you for the suggestion about White Collar. I've never seen it, so that's going on the list as well. This is great!

At 11:53 AM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Lori, are there any other shows you like that you think may appeal to me?

At 11:53 AM, Blogger Melinda said...

Another USA network show that's enjoyable is Psych. The interactions between Shawn & Gus is always amusing.

I also enjoy Criminal Minds. It's pretty gory though. Their profiling techniques are really interesting. Sometimes the show will delve into the individual characters & how they deal with the horrible things they see on the job.

At 11:56 AM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Suzanne, I know what you mean about the Holy Spirit speaking to you about television. That also happens to me with certain novels, as well, not only due to the typical sex/violence, but also to the way some books make me feel--angry, resentful. I've canceled a lot of DVD seasons after watching the first episode or two.

Another reason I cancel is if the DVD doesn't hold my interest.

At 11:58 AM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Oh, yes, Melinda, we also watch Psyche for the light humor. Kind of like the Three Stooges of yester-century.

At 2:53 PM, Blogger Barb said...

We like some British TV at our house. I would recommend Foyle's War, Lewis, and Midsomer Murders. Love Monk so much I've bought all 8 seasons when they have come out on DVD, since we don't have

At 5:04 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Wow, Barb, you really love Monk! Thanks for the advice. I'm writing them down and will check for them on Netflix. Love the input!

At 8:45 PM, Blogger jel said...

NCIS, and we watch alot of PBS shows, like Art Wolfe ,

when i stay with mom, we watch the Watons and Little House.
wish they would bring
"TRAPPER JOHN M.D" The Brady Bunch, and older shows out on DvD

At 9:37 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

That's right, jel, I forgot about Trapper John MD. Pernell Roberts played the doctor, right? Loved him in Bonanza!

At 5:08 PM, Blogger Stacy at Exceedingly Mundane said...

We loved Monk too, and hated to see it end. We really enjoy some of the "off-season" shows like Monk. The ones on this summer we really like are Leverage (TNT) and the USA Network ones, White Collar, Covert Affairs and Burn Notice. In the fall/winter, we like a lot of the NCIS type shows.

Great question!

At 6:48 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Thanks, Stacy! I've never heard of some of the shows that have been mentioned, or I've skimmed past them on Netflix. I've got some great new ideas! Also, there are reruns of our Star Trek favorites to get us by...

At 6:46 AM, Blogger Crystal Laine Miller said...

LOL! True that on never watching a medical show with a med field person....

Although, around here we like Scrubs, as an exception. It makes us laugh and there are truths in the jest, even though outrageous.

I used to be so wiped out from teaching all week that on Fridays I'd spend the evening asleep on the sofa, while Chris watched some apocalyptic, end times religious show (he was in med school.) I would be dreaming about war and planes and blood and wake up to that. So, I don't even have to be watching it--I can absorb it in my sleep!

I'm with you!

At 10:18 AM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

Well, Crystal, I tried Mercy, Season 1. Another crash and burn. Oh, well...since watching shows is something Mel and I try to do together, I guess that's a wash, too.

At 2:49 PM, Blogger Diann Hunt said...

I agree with Melinda, love, love, LOVE Psych!!!!! So fun to watch!!

We enjoyed Monk, too!

At 4:07 PM, Blogger jel said...

the Big Bang Theory,
is funny, but it's past my bedtime,
so can't watch it that much.
but it' on DVD now ;)

At 4:09 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

I'll have to check that out, too, jel!

At 12:26 PM, Blogger Deena said...

Oh, you've GOT to try Leverage! It's HILARIOUS, and clever...we fell in love in the second season and ordered season 1 on Netflix to get caught we can't get enough!


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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

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