Van Helsing (Syfy)

VanHelsing

Van Helsing (Syfy) – Starts 23rd September – Renewed

Set in 2019, three years after vampires have descended upon Earth causing all manner of unpleasantness to happen, a medical outpost is attacked where the vampires are trying to kill a woman who has been in a coma during the three years.

During the attack the woman awakes to show off her skills in improvised stabbing and not turning after being bit. In fact she’s so good at the whole not becoming a vampire game, that her blood converts any vampire that ingests her blood to revert back to their old human form.

In the ep it covers the build up to the attack where a group of survivors are let into the outpost by the last remaining soldier who has been looking after the building and recently vampire-afied doctor. All of which leads up to a whodunnit with the break-in of the building.

It a more than decent start, as it comes across as one of the better made SyFy shows along it having a look of a mix between Dominion and the game Dying Light.

It some watchable enjoyable sci-fi.

6.6/10

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Andrew Zimmern’s Driven By Food (Travel Channel)

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Andrew Zimmern’s Driven By Food (Travel Channel) – Starts 16th August

A culinary travel show where Andrew Zimmern visits a city, then befriends three cabbies who take him around to their favourite spots in town and show him their favourite eateries.

It’s your typical food show by has more than regular occurrence of Zimmern talking about the food he’s eating with one of his new found friends while they give the appearance they don’t really know why he’s dissecting the meal as much as he is.

While the food side of the show is by the numbers, the travel aspect of it is the more interesting aspect. Though with it being 45 minutes long it runs out steam halfway through and becomes a bit of a drag to watch.

3.2/10

Chesapeake Shores (Hallmark)

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Chesapeake Shores (Hallmark) – Starts 14th August – Renewed

Behold, this may be the most Hallmark programme to ever be made. A single mother of 2 who holds a high powered job in the city returns home at the request of her sister, only to discover that she works too much and is missing out on watching her daughters growing up, falling into the pattern her father did to her and her siblings.

By the end of the ep, she has decided living in her home town and commuting to work may be the way forward, her whole family will turn up out of nowhere during a 4th July fireworks display and that awkward lake swimming scenes will become a strangely regular occurrence. And of which is set to an overtly twee backing track that sounds like its from a composer of a straight-to-video Disney film.

Along with all that, it’s topped off with the grandmothers weird take on an Irish accent that only kicks in when she hands out nuggets of wisdom.

Every aspect of this is unrelentingly twee.

1.5/10

The Get Down (Netflix)

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The Get Down (Netflix) – Starts 12th August – Cancelled

Set in the bronx in the 1970’s, it follows a group of four friends as they leave school for the summer and get into the the emerging rap scene under the tutorage of the illusive graffiti artist the Shaolin Fantastic.

It shares similarities to Vinyl with it being set within a music scene with it having more than few musical bits, though unlike Vinyl its really heavy stylised with its cut scenes, incidental music for certain character appearances, and the acting comes across more of a stage show delivery than that of a tv programme.

Story wise it’s pretty light on the ground and is more an exercise in style over substance.

4.2/10

It Takes A Killer (Oxygen)

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It Takes A Killer (Oxygen) – Starts 7th August

Crime show that documents a notorious, if lesser known murderer, where members of the police who worked on the case explain how they solved the case, while the narrater gives a constant stream of recaps and explanations during the reenactments.

For a 20 minute show it holds your attention and doesn’t get bogged down in itself. It also helps that the cases they show aren’t that well known so it doesn’t ever feel that it’s running over old ground.

4.9/10

Botched By Nature (E!)

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Botched By Nature (E!) – Starts 7th August

The two plastic surgeons of Botched have decided to use their powers for good and travel the country where they meet people that require their help to put right physical ailments they’ve had from birth or as a result of a mishap.

In it you get the back story of the patient, then they rock up to the house and have a chat and a quick consultation with them (where they explain the procedure, that will happen and the complications and results they predict), and finally so the surgery and a big reveal to family and friends.

Then to break up the plastic surgery going on, it has the two docs getting up to hijinx in the towns of their clients and gently mocking each other.

All-in-all it’s pretty much no different to Botched.

2.8/10