Wednesday, March 18, 2009

'Kings': Stylish, tantalizing but not deep

I watched this show Sunday night and liked it. ENS has done a piece on it and here it is-

The second book of Samuel (11:1) calls spring "the time when kings go out to battle" and NBC-TV has also decided it's the time for a new drama series titled "Kings" -- a modern version of the extensive Old Testament accounts of the wars of kings Saul and David.

In its two-hour premiere on March 15 (subsequent episodes will run one hour), the show proved to be a stylish production that referred both to ancient tales and current headlines, but didn't probe particularly deeply into some of the themes it opened.

King Silas, played by Ian McShane with world-weary cunning, rules the kingdom of Gilboa from the capital of Shiloh, which looks like a digitally shined-up New York. The names, with Silas standing in for Saul, are straight from the Good Book. (Saul battled the Philistines near the Gilboa mountain ridge and Shiloh was an ancient center of Israelite worship.)

There is a fair bit of God talk from the beginning, as Silas marks the re-building of Shiloh after wartime destruction by telling a huge celebratory crowd, "It's not popular to speak of God. I do so because I feel blessed. Look at this city we built through war and sacrifice." His personal myth includes a story about a time he saw a great swarm of butterflies gather around his head like "a living crown," which he interpreted as "God's signal to begin." The next logical question, "Begin what?" remains unanswered, but Gilboa's national symbol is a butterfly.

More here-

1 comment:

Bruce Robison said...

I agree--I thought it was pretty good. Reminded me of the character studies in the classic Stefan Heym novel, "The King David Report."