TOP TV of 2017: Best duo's

4:23:00 AM

Best shows of 2017: Best duo's


2017 was the year the top TV shows were all about the buddy comedy on TV. Wait a sec, what? Alright let me back up, this was the year of the huge cast. Twin Peaks The return published a incredible list of actors before it came out, Stranger Things gives equal time to all it's many characters, adding a whole new group instead of only one sister. Glow introduces us to the gorgeous ladies of wrestling, Master of None handed the reins over to the extras in the NYC episode, and The Walking Dead is all about communities these days. So why am I blabbering about buddies?
The thing is that even when the cast is humongous the writers like to divide the actors up. In pairs. And I am sure there are more platonic duos ruling the screen than amorous ones.
There could be many reasons why, budget, shooting schedules, the decline of romantic comedy, and of course the charm of the back and forth, which works with a group, but is much easier to accomplish within the intimacy of a twosome.



These are my favorite duos of 2017:


Stranger Things/ Hopper and Eleven
In Season One we got the Goonies, Will's friends all united trying to save him. This time tensions arose, fights about Max, drunken lover spats, epic brawls between father/surrogate teenage daughter, and the group splintered. Steve went off with Dustin. Max and Lucas biked around, Nancy and Jonathan pulled a sting on Dr Owens. It's hard to choose my favorite pair, but it's also very easy. Chief Hopper's loss of his daughter, and Eleven betrayal by papa, made their little house on the vine infested prairie, their makeshift family a delicate, and heartwarming affair. Eleven watching Hopper dance was priceless.

The Punisher Frank and Micro. 
Do you ever play the game in your head: who would I like to cast against each other? You have probably better things to do, but I wished I would have thought of pairing Jon Bernthal with Ebon Moss-Bachrach. The intensity of Frank needs the oddball despair of Micro. Frank never seemed to fit in the Netflix Marvel universe, his take-no-prisoners approach clashes with the struggling-with-morality bunch, it makes every interaction Frank has with one of them, especially Karen, too black and white. (I would like to see Frank and Jessica together, that would be a sight to behold!)
But pair him with this guy putting his family through hell trying to keep them safe, an intelligent Beta to Frank's Alpha male and suddenly The Punisher is not all about trauma, PTSD, misery and violence, it can be about sandwiches, heartbreak, and two good-guys-gone-bad goofing around.

Mindhunter Holden Ford and Bill Tench
Normally when putting two cops together, who operate with a different mindset, you get some initial hate, lots of one liners, the straight man sighing, the crazy maker going from bad to worse, till the moment they suddenly love each other, voilà the buddy cop cliche. Bill would be irritated by Holden caustic obsessive behavior, and Holden would joke about Bill's conservative way of doing things. In Mindhunter these men are professionals, they know how to interact, they are superb FBI agents, they look out for each other, have adult conversations about their differences of opinions on handling the craziest of killers. Bill's warnings to Holden are subtle, nonjudgmental, it's two men trying to do their job to the best of their abilities, managing what could be a complicated relationship, with emotional distance and good humor. It's one of the most realistic depiction of male friendship I ever saw.

Fargo Gloria Burgle and Winnie Lopez
And now for the female equivalent. Where Bill and Holden keep a certain emotional distance, Gloria and Winnie become close almost immediately. They recognize something in each other. They are both surrounded by assholes. They use the same wry, seen-it-all attitude to cut through bullshit. In no time they figure out how a stupid  criminal could go to the wrong town and kill the wrong man, and even if they are not allowed to go after the Stussy behind it all, they manage to subvert the patriarchy with stoicism, deadpan stares, and quick thinking. Their camaraderie in this harsh landscape is warming as their wonderful hug.

The Americans Paige and Elizabeth Jennings
Mother and daughter kept butting heads all this time, Elizabeth despised the religious path her daughter had taken. Paige insisted on a truthful answer from the master of deceit and disguise. They were always quite similar, driven by ideology, striving to make a difference, believing in authority dreaming of a better world; they are determined, stubborn and willing to sacrifice. Phillip is much more Americanized, trying to better himself, looking out for number one. Individualism against communism. Paige was never going to go Phillip's way. She is Elizabeth's child.
A crisis, Elizabeth killing their assailant, throws mother and daughter together. While Phillip goes off to his EST meetings, Elizabeth and Paige train for combat in the garage. Mother hits her daughter in the face, more than once, she's toughing her up, Russian-style.
Coming up to end of the show it seems obvious that the Jennings will have to face each other. I hope for Phillip's sake that he will find at least one of the women on his side, otherwise this will not end well for him.

Twin Peaks The Return Dale Cooper and Laura Palmer
Of course I could have chosen the Mitchum brothers, eating cornflakes in their matching silk robes, ducking behind the bushes, during a shootout in the peaceful Las Vegas neighborhood. 'People are under a lot of stress these days.' Funny as hell, but watching Agent Cooper meet Laura Palmer in the flesh, holding out his hand, leading her away from her death, only to encounter her later in the other dimension, to bring her to the place she was meant to be, to shatter this evil universe, was a moment 25 years in the making. Like in the Preminger movie, Cooper was under the spell of this women he never met. He first saw her picture, then she visited him in his dreams, then she whispered in his ear in the Lodge, but that was never the real deal. Like in that film noir classic, Cooper had enter a dreamworld, to meet the real Laura. A lot has been said about the rightness or wrongness of the rescue mission, for me that outstretched hand was everything Twin Peaks had been working towards too.

These are my favorites, but here are some more pairing I liked:
The pairing that is meant to be: FP and Alice Cooper in Riverdale. 'Hey, is it true about men that are just released from prison?'
The Luca makes every duo better; Luca and Maia on The Good Fight.
The Home Alone homage pairing of Red and Blanca on OITNB
And the bond that should never be broken: Ezekiel and Shiva in the Walking Dead.
What are some of yours?

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