Streaming Exclusive Days 9 and 10: Endings and Beginnings

Anne’s Note: I didn’t blog yesterday because I had not streamed anything the day before. I’ve been getting into a bad cycle of forcing myself to blog before watching anything. The problem with this is that some days I’m so tired from blogging that I end up not watching anything and thus have nothing to blog about. Since the ultimate purpose of this project is to share my opinions on shows and streaming in general, this seemed counterproductive. The following details what I watched January 10.

My Mood for the Day: Tired from work yadda yadda yadda.

What I Watched: Amazon’s Mozart in the Jungle (S3:E1) and Hulu’s Casual (S1:E9-S1:E10).

What IMDb says: Love, money, ambition and music intertwine in Mozart in the Jungle, a half hour comedic drama that looks at finding yourself and finding love while conquering New York City. A brash new maestro Rodrigo (Gael Garcia Bernal) stirs up the New York Symphony as young oboist Hailey (Lola Kirke) hopes for her big chance. (Mozart in the Jungle) 

A new comedy series about a bachelor brother and his newly divorced sister living under one roof again. Together, they coach each other through the crazy world of dating while raising her teenage daughter. (Casual) 

My Thoughts on What I Watched: I finished the first season of Casual and started the third season of Mozart in the Jungle and of course both were enjoyable.

Mozart in the Jungle has a change of scenery in Season 3, kicking off the Season in Venice. It’s really the first time we get to see Hailey and Rodrigo independent of the New York Symphony. Rodrigo is conducting a concert for some big shot opera singer who’s name I forget, and Hailey is touring with the Andrew Walsh ensemble. Like most of Mozart in the Jungle, the entertainment value comes from that tension between Rodrigo and Hailey. They’re in the same city but don’t know it. You’re waiting for that moment when they meet.

Not only do you get some payoff in this episode, you get a tease for next episode. The episode ends with Hailey going to live with Rodrigo and Alessandra (I remembered her name!!!). Hailey and Rodrigo under the same roof is enough to get you excited for Ep. 2, but the addition of a gorgeous Italian woman under that same roof? It’s hard to contain my excitement for the shenanigans that could go down.

As far as Casual goes, I’m excited to report that after finishing the first season I’m still digging this show as much as I did after the first episode. Not entirely sure what to expect in Season 2 nor do I have anything groundbreaking to say about the end of Season 1.

My Thoughts on Streaming in General: Watching a season finale of one show and a season premiere of another show in the same day got me thinking about how these types of episodes might have changed from traditional tv.

A season finale has to be huge. It has to be something that will get people anxious to watch another episode. And as mentioned in a previous post, it can sometimes be a full year between seasons rather than just a few months. While the Casual finale maybe wasn’t as grandiose as some others, it did deliver enough to fit this bill.

Premieres have to do a bit of the same. Yes, they have to get us excited for the next episode, but that’s true of all episodes. A premiere should also give us a hint and what we can expect over an entire season, not just the next episode. And while Mozart in the Jungle does this to some extent with its season 3 premiere, I can’t help but think about how this episode would have to be structured differently if viewers had to wait a week for Episode 2. This premiere doesn’t even explore the primary cliffhanger of the Season 2 finale, but that’s alright because anyone who cares just has to hit one more play button to answer those questions. That means that this episode can focus on two storylines and do them properly rather than trying to juggle five plot lines and execute none of them.

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