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Taboo

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When are they just going to say what the show is about? Also, what happened to Tom Hardy's movie career? Why is he doing a tv series?

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Well, this is what FX says about it:

Quote

Set in 1814, Taboo follows James Keziah Delaney, a man who has been to the ends of the earth and comes back irrevocably changed. Believed to be long dead, he returns home to London from Africa to inherit what is left of his father's shipping empire and rebuild a life for himself. But his father's legacy is a poisoned chalice, and with enemies lurking in every dark corner, James must navigate increasingly complex territories to avoid his own death sentence. Encircled by conspiracy, murder and betrayal, a dark family mystery unfolds in a combustible tale of love and treachery.

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Think of it like Hamlet except that Hamlet will be played by a version of Lord Byron (someone mad, bad and dangerous to know) who will gleefully beat people to death and lick their blood from the bare hands he used to do it with.  This looks awesome and I can't wait to see it.

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17 hours ago, johntfs said:

This looks awesome and I can't wait to see it.

Yup, been looking forward to this for a while.  I'll watch Tom Hardy in anything and the trailers look good.

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Man, incest used to be a very, well, taboo thing in tv/movies, now it's everywhere - after last night's episode of Delicious now it's here, not to mention GOT.

On the whole, this was a very slow start, but I'm intrigued. Though, James's mother must have been a very light skinned-black woman or not black at all for him being a son of slave and a slaver.

Edited by tanita

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On 12/12/2016 at 4:50 PM, SimoneS said:

When are they just going to say what the show is about? Also, what happened to Tom Hardy's movie career? Why is he doing a tv series?

He also did seasons 2 and 3 of Peaky Blinders. Nothing 'happened' to his movie career, he's just mixing it up a bit. 

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IIRC, they said his mother was supposed to have been from Naples, so obviously light enough to have passed for Italian. 

My guess for the 'taboo'

the kid that James was paying to be raised, that was his child fathered on his half sister, and that's why he had to leave the country.  

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It'll be interesting to see whether this show will take things between James and his sister to GoT levels but the concept hasn't been all that taboo in film for at least 40 years. 1974's widely acclaimed Chinatown had this pivotal scene between Faye Dunaway and Jack Nicholson:

I'm not particularly a fan of Tom Hardy and didn't think I'd like this but after the first episode I'm in. However, IMDb calls Taboo a miniseries. Is this only intended to be a limited run or is "miniseries" just a British way of being cagey?

(Also, wow does Oona Chaplin look a lot like a young Jennifer Love Hewitt.)

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I know that incest isn't a novelty in entertainment but they have been hitting that well a lot lately. It just really caught my eye.

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On 2017-01-07 at 6:48 PM, tanita said:

Though, James's mother must have been a very light skinned-black woman or not black at all for him being a son of slave and a slaver.

I thought she was native since he said that his father bought the island (Vancouver) and a wife for gun powder. I just wish they stop going there with the sister. I'm not sure if I will continue watching and that's something that puts it in the no column.

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I doubt they will stop as there are serious implications that one of the "taboo's" is that the two of them had a son together - the reason why he left or was forced to leave England.

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Also intrigue by show. I like mystery element, almost supernatural stuff. Taboo is definitely

Spoiler

brother/sister love relationship

I just watched Christmas special Black Mirror episode almost immediately after Taboo, and I got double dose of  Oona Chaplin :)  I remember her from my favorite little show The Hour.

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It would take a lot to convince me to watch anything with Tom Hardy in it. He seems like a complete tool. The description of this series definitely doesn't convince me. Violent, boring, and gross. No thanks.

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5 hours ago, Louise said:

It would take a lot to convince me to watch anything with Tom Hardy in it. He seems like a complete tool. The description of this series definitely doesn't convince me. Violent, boring, and gross. No thanks.

hah. I feel the exact opposite. If Tom Hardy's in it, I will watch it. Who cares if it has a plot, if it has Tom Hardy! :-D 

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I've seen these promos and I'm not adverse to a period piece. They used to get short runs, there were some very good ones, IMHO in the aforementioned 90s. I loved, and own, The Young Riders and Magnificent Seven. Among other shows. I'd kill for Homefront. But at any rate, period shows are coming back and I couldn't be happier. I'll check it out, freaky or not. Anything is worth a look, my only objection is, and has been, why watch a serial when the good ones get yanked out from under you! But I'll try, this one seems worth it..........

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I love the production design and cinematography (the color palette, not the TV-friendly framing) but the story feels thin. It got more interesting at the end when James explained the war stuff and the interest in his family's land. The show wants to be ballsy (incest! gasp!) yet clarifies that James and his sister are step-siblings. Whatever. I could care less about the romance because the sister has the personality of a zombie. I'll try one more ep.

Edited by numbnut
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2 hours ago, numbnut said:

I love the production design and cinematography (the color palette, not the TV-friendly framing) but the story feels thin. It got more interesting at the end when James explained the war stuff and the interest in his family's land. The show wants to be ballsy (incest! gasp!) yet clarifies that James and his sister are step-siblings. Whatever. I could care less about the romance because the sister has the personality of a zombie. I'll try one more ep.

IIRC, they're half siblings, not step siblings. Presumably with the same father and different mothers. 

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A picky point: "taboo" is a polynesian word that only became known in english after 1775. In this show's setting, about 40 years later, i doubt it would have spread enough yet to be known in North America or british possessions in Africa. There are plenty of other words that could have been used for the title such as: Forbidden, Unnatural, Anathema, or Depraved.

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Is there anything old that can truly be new again? The second I read "sister" I was "they're boning." I don't know what it says about our society that incest can be eye-rollingly old hat, but there it is.

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7 hours ago, Ceindreadh said:

IIRC, they're half siblings, not step siblings. Presumably with the same father and different mothers. 

OK. Either way, it still feels like the writers are pulling their punches.

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8 hours ago, dr pepper said:

A picky point: "taboo" is a polynesian word that only became known in english after 1775. In this show's setting, about 40 years later, i doubt it would have spread enough yet to be known in North America or british possessions in Africa. There are plenty of other words that could have been used for the title such as: Forbidden, Unnatural, Anathema, or Depraved.

It's 2017.  Surely it's spread far enough to used as a title of something shown in 2017.  Unless the word is used in setting, I see no problem.  Honestly, even back then 40 years is a pretty good while so I still see no problem with the usage of the word.

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Well I was able to see the first episode last night (BBC version) and it was very good. I guess this is totally my kind of thing because I found it artistic and fascinating and am in for the whole series. I thought Tom Hardy was very, very good and the only thing I have ever seen him in is the latest Mad Max. He makes a great grunting sound when he is not willing to reply "with words" that I found hysterically appropriate. The half sister is a bit of a cipher but it is quite realistic inasmuch as her dependency on her husband requires so much more subservience and lack of agency than we are used to in our modern age. The opening credit segment is strangely similar to those of Vikings, oddly enough - I don't know if there is any crossover on the production team but it was a little jarring (the music for the Vikings opener is embedded in my brain and that soundtrack immediately started playing in my head over whatever the actual music for Taboo was supposed to be).

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Spoiler: Vancouver Island is part of Canada, so Delaney's on our side! Woot!

I liked it overall. The first East India Company scene was a pretty big exposition dump about what a crazy hellion the main character is, but it's promising, and Hardy is always interesting to watch.

Anybody care to guess how many episodes before he and his half-sister fuck again?

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The sister was annoying and bland in the beginning, but I liked that she snapped back at her husband.  At least she has a little personality.

Did Hardy have makeup on his face to make him look darker?  In the church, his neck was 5x lighter than his face.
The strange looks from Delaney to random people made me laugh a few times.

This episode was very slow, all the commercial breaks didn't help the pace at all.

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That rain poncho was way too rubbery looking for me in this period piece.

Yes, it had a Viking vibe for sure!.

I want to know what was said by James at the graveside.  It looked like it was some sort of tribal ritual.

I'm not sure about it yet......

It appears that Delaney is suffering from a mental illness and/or PTSD if he really experienced the morgue scene in his mind.

I am restlessly waiting for The Americans to return for S5!!! 

Edited by crgirl412
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Well, tonight I learned that Tom Hardy's dad is named Chips.  That's.... interesting.

As for the show itself, not sure what to think.  I didn't think it was bad, but I can see why it got a negative reception from the critics, because it seems to be lacking something that most great FX shows tend to have, and I can't quite put my finger in it.  I guess it could be that the characters aren't really all that fresh (screwed up protagonist, sneering pompous villains, teary-eyed love interest, asshole husband, etc.) or the story (clearly seems like the East India Company or someone killed James' dad, and he is out for blood.)

The cast though makes up for it.  Tom Hardy seems like a pain in the ass to deal with in real life (sounds like he's one of those "method actors"), but I think he is a captivating actor, so I'm looking forward to seeing him lead a television series/miniseries.  If nothing else, I love how he can looks so menacing and intimidating, even if he isn't massive.  The guy playing Zilpha's husband was a few inches taller (and was in Vikings!), but I still came away thinking "Oh, Hardy would so kick his ass without breaking a sweat!"  Also, some of his best work is when he isn't even saying anything, but just his reaction and facial movements.

I spotted at least three former Game of Thrones folks: Oona Chaplin, Jonathan Pryce, and Roger Ashton-Griffiths.  I'm sure there were more of them!  Oona didn't get much to do until the very end, so hopefully that will change in upcoming episodes.  Jonathan Pryce was a blast as always.

Hey, Franka Potente is playing another brothel/whorehouse madam like she did in Copper!

Yeah, that kid is totally the love child of James and Zilpha.  That may not reach Lannister incest levels, but it's still... well, taboo (sorry!)

I guess we'll flashback to all of the crazy stuff James did during his time away.

This is from the same guy who did Peaky Blinders?  I am so rooting for a reverse situation with the actors where Hardy is the star, and then suddenly Cillian Murphy shows up near the end, sporting a busy beard and delivering numerous amounts of dialogue in incomprehensible fashion (love Hardy, I couldn't understand 75% of what he said on Peaky Blinders.)

I will no doubt watch, even if it's not great FX material, because I've done worse for this network.  I saw The Bastard Executioner.  I've seen all three seasons of Tyrant, and at least Tom Hardy is better then the guy whose name I can't even remember anymore. 

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On 1/9/2017 at 7:06 PM, SailorGirl said:

hah. I feel the exact opposite. If Tom Hardy's in it, I will watch it. Who cares if it has a plot, if it has Tom Hardy! :-D 

I'll co-sign on that.  Tom Hardy could be filmed reading the phone book and I would watch.  That man captivates my loins.  I mean, me.  Captivates ME.

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Nice scenery, authentic actors, good production values and cinematography, very atmospheric .... but story-wise? zzzzZZZZZ (literally). 

I get the feeling that the showrunners and others also realize it is a bit of a slog because the previews were "This season on Taboo" instead of the normal "Next week on Taboo". 
I was not inclined to come back for more. But if it manages to get some legitimate critical buzz, I can always catch up later. 

Edited by shrewd.buddha
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The fact that the above has Tom Hardy snuggling with his hat-wearing dog, a badger named Geoff and a suitcase filled with cheese, leads me to believe that this was created just for me.

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I wasn't that impressed and I turned it off before it ended.  I got the incest vibe between them at the gravesite, no surprise there.  

By the way, all the people are pretty wretched-looking.  Nice to see Franka Potente though.

I'll give it another shot because it's Tom Hardy.  I do get the feeling he's an ass in real life, but what do I care?  I'll never meet him.  There's something that's just really captivating about him.  I know he's done a lot of stuff but I've only seen him in a few movies.  I'll never forget him in Warriors and, of course, The Revenant, and especially Locke.

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I really liked it. In shows like this I always think that everyone is too clean and disease free and have good teeth. Nothing to complain about here, this is an unclean, rough looking bunch. I like the story, I am sure there was some brother/sister boning going on, they are only half siblings after all, and the kid has very dark hair, like the sister. Her husband is a dick, I don't like him one bit. In for the season

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17 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

Yeah, that kid is totally the love child of James and Zilpha.  That may not reach Lannister incest levels, but it's still... well, taboo (sorry!)

Just noting for the record that's not the only example of incest from Game of Thrones

Spoiler

Perhaps dear dead dad went all Craster on Zilpha

But so far Taboo is as subtle as a freight train, so the kid is probably his own first cousin.

Too bad, I was sort of hoping that Anakin Skywalker was the father.

As for the episode itself, I can't recall the last time I've seen such a portentous POS, at least whenever James was around.  Not a good sign.

And who cares if daddy "bought" the island from the local tribe?  If you don't have a grant from the crown, your "title" is worth jack.

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I'll have to use closed captioning because half the time I couldn't understand what some of them were saying, especially James and the butler/servant.  

Also, there were too many damn commercials that affected the flow of the episode.

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7 hours ago, Ohwell said:

"only" half siblings?  

This is cable after all, half siblings is practically not related nowadays at least tv-wise

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I don't know what to say about that episode. I wasn't entertained, rather it was more like WTF is happening here. It seems to me that it is basically a family drama with a business rivalry, but they threw in hints of supernatural to try and make it deeper than it really is. The only thing I liked was the dirt and mud everywhere. It was a far more realistic portrayal of London than I see in other period pieces. I will give it another episode or two to see if it picks up.

12 hours ago, Constantinople said:

As for the episode itself, I can't recall the last time I've seen such a portentous POS, at least whenever James was around.  Not a good sign.

Hilarious and so true.

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13 hours ago, Ohwell said:

I'll have to use closed captioning because half the time I couldn't understand what some of them were saying, especially James and the butler/servant.

Consider yourself lucky

The first scene between James & Brace the butler

  • started with boring, unintelligible backstory ("captain of the mutineers" "being an ape for you")
  • followed-up with the habits of Delaney père the Nutter
  • continued with trite metaphors ("Gulls only come if there is meat") and
  • ended with self-important nonsense ("I have sworn to do very foolish things")

The gist is that Delaney père "bought" Nootka Island, though the circumstances weren't disclosed, married/bought a Nootka woman as a wife, said wife is James's mother, the cover story is that she's from Naples, and some important people really, really want that island.

In the second scene, we learned Delaney père and Delaney fils consider mailing horse shit acceptable business behavior.  For plot purposes the main points are that James turned down an offer from Thoyt the lawyer -- Posca from Rome -- to purchase the Delaney shipping company or Nootka Island or both.  Also, the shipping company holds a lease on some docks that still have 32 years to run, and that Delaney père hadn't visited in years.

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I will stick with this series because I like period pieces and I like Tom Hardy. I put on Closed-captioning but Xfinity has lousy CC, so I missed some of the conversations but I knew there would be some astute 'mumble' translators on this forum.  Thank you.

I am a bit surprised that no one is taking bets on the murderer.  I'm betting on the son-in-law for now.  The servant is too obvious.  I was fascinated with the autopsy and the procedure to determine arsenic poisoning.  A little gross but fascinating.

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