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Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency (2016)

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Totally has nothing to do with any previous Dirk Gently, nevertheless it looks amusing. Also Elijah Wood kills it at being exasperated.

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After Todd Brotzman happens upon a murder scene, he meets self-proclaimed detective, Dirk Gently; and is drawn into a case involving the death of reclusive millionaire, Patrick Spring, and the kidnapping of his daughter Lydia. As multiple characters and storylines seem primed to converge, tangling endlessly in towards the center, it’s clear to Todd that his life will never be the same.

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I read the books when they came out, and my memory of them is next to zero (as opposed to the Hitchhiker's books, which I also haven't read in decades, but remain vivid in my mind). I want to say there was a Coke machine blocking a stairway at some point? That's about it.

But I'm baffled by the idea that networks are still fake-adapting novels into TV shows. We live in a post "Game of Thrones" world. There's obviously huge added value in bringing book readers in (or at least not turning them off). If you're going to do an adaptation that has so little to do with the novels, why not just skip the licensing fee, change the names, and call it something new?

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I have to say I think this is, IMHO, extremely difficult material to adapt. In the books, you see things from Dirk's perspective, but on TV you are looking at him from the outside, and honestly, he can come across as quite an asshole that way. That was the main drawback of the 2012 adaptation with Stephen Mangan. (Again, IMHO).

So it sounds like they've tried to make Dirk more likable, but still very eccentric, sort of a Matt Smith Doctor type?

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I read an article recently where someone (I think Max Landis) said that you can't really adapt a Douglas Adams book, because, in essence, the tone of his books is far more important than the actual plot.  So his implication was that they're trying to create a TV show around this character that "feels" like a Douglas Adams work moreso than actually recreating the original story.

So far as remembering anything from the original books goes, it's been a very long time since I read them, and the one thing that stuck out to me was that Dirk usually needed to begin his investigations by meditating for a couple of weeks at one particular spot on earth, where the ley lines all converged in such a way as to make it as easy as it could be for him to discern the connections.  The fact that this spot happened to be on a beach in Bermuda was coincidence.

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I want to say there was a Coke machine blocking a stairway at one point?



It's a couch actually, that couldn't conceivably been stuck in that specific way.

I might watch this show, it seems to be my kind of crazy. And I'm a huge Hitchhiker's Guide fan, so...

Edited by hjmugillecuty · Reason: Fix quote

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On 10/20/2016 at 11:28 AM, Stowaway said:

I read the books when they came out, and my memory of them is next to zero (as opposed to the Hitchhiker's books, which I also haven't read in decades, but remain vivid in my mind).

I read the books decades ago when they came out, too, and also barely remember anything. I do remember enjoying them at the time since, well, it's Douglas Adams! I find the show a bit frenetic, but I'm still up for the series. Maybe it'll calm down a bit as we go along. Watching has done nothing to spark memories of the books, but it'll be fun and Saturday is back to BBCA night!

Corgi count to date: 1

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I thought it was ok, except for Dirk.  I understand about the book character and the POV, but he just didn't fit into his own show.  I also don't think the actor is all that good.  On the other hand, I thought Elijah Wood and Richard Schiff were both excellent, as was the other missing person detective. 

More corgi, please!   Also:  Kitten!

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I'm not familiar with the books but have a strong aversion to shows that feature characters being wrongly suspected of crimes or, dog forbid, convicted, so this goes straight to my discard pile. Todd being so hapless makes me sad for him, even if that's not going to be his ongoing arc.

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Not sure what to think yet. I enjoyed the British version very much. This just seemed so disjointed and hard to follow.  I feel that the actors should have switch roles, for some reason I feel EW would have been a betterDirk.

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I absolutely adored this. I cracked up more than a few times, found it a total mind fuck (in the best way), enjoyed the acting and can't wait to see how it all ends up connected, especially the chick upstairs tied to the bed with the dead guy.

I'm a huge Hitchhikers fan but never actually read a Dirk Gently book, though I always meant to, so I had very little idea going in, other than Adams' awesomely twisted imagination would be at play, but as soon as I saw the corgi in a promo shot I was in. Corgi's are my weakness. But I am intreagued by the whole solving crimes through coincidence idea. Can't wait for the next ep.

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What I find hilarious is that it's like this show and Falling Water are the same style, but FW feels like a show that took quaaludes and DG is on whatever makes you manic. But same level of weirdness, interconnectivity, and crime-detective-mystery-ness.

But I am OK with that kind of thing. Watching is like taking drugs without the drugs, you know? I will watch a few episodes and see if it becomes either funny or interesting or mind-bendy enough to make it a good trip or a bad one.

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Todd becomes drawn further into the case, as they learn more about the kidnappers; an absurd hostage exchange occurs.

 

More corgi? please!  Also:  Kitten!

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WTF was that? 

I don't know if I'll stick with it or not. I loved the books and enjoyed the British series a lot. This...not so much. The tone seems way off and Dirk is the least Dirk-like person they could find and still stay male and British. I understand Landis not wanting to do a direct adaptation but this is no way evoked the feeling of the book universe for me. Cute kitten and corgi, though.

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This feels closer in tone to Neverwhere than Dirk Gently. I'm not sure yet whether it's going to gel.

On 10/20/2016 at 10:48 AM, Latverian Diplomat said:

So it sounds like they've tried to make Dirk more likable, but still very eccentric, sort of a Matt Smith Doctor type?

That's funny because he reminds me of David Tennant's Doctor. Also a young Clay Aiken!

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It's been soooooo long since I've read the Dirk Gently books that I remember very little about them.  I do remember that one of them involved Thor (the second one, right?), so when Dirk name-dropped him, it brought back some memories.  I guess this story takes place AFTER the books, so there won't be much that I recognize.  Which is okay, since I don't remember much anyway.

I thought this episode was INCREDIBLY bizarre!  But in a good way.  I was NOT expecting the violence though!  Especially the holistic assassin with a machete.  That totally threw me for a loop.  But I'm curious how she's involved and why she is after Dirk.

The ending was very interesting... so Dirk has the kitten and the gorilla mask?  So he was the one that broke into the PH and took the kitten?  Who's kitten is it?  Why was Dirk there?  How'd he get Todd's key?  There's gotta be some time travel involved, considering what we saw on floor 18!  I'm definitely intrigued and want to know more.

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I didn't find it any more bizarre or surreal than I would've expected, and although the amount of violence would usually turn me off, it was in such an unreal, comical context, that it didn't bother me.

What did bother me was the BBC's choppy feed. I may have to call AT&T again about my ridiculously slow Internet speed.

Edited by shapeshifter

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Well, I'm not sure.  I don't like seeing women menaced or tortured, AND I didn't like the murderous woman looking for Dirk at all.  But, there was a corgi, and a darn cute one at that.  And a kitten!  I may stick it out.  I'm gonna have to DVR it so I can fast forward through the icky parts.  

Apart from the corgi and the kitten, I'm intrigued by Dirk and by Todd, too.  

But enough with the absolute bloodbath effects and more story line please.  

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34 minutes ago, cardigirl said:

Well, I'm not sure.  I don't like seeing women menaced or tortured, AND I didn't like the murderous woman looking for Dirk at all.  But, there was a corgi, and a darn cute one at that.  And a kitten!  I may stick it out.  I'm gonna have to DVR it so I can fast forward through the icky parts. 

But enough with the absolute bloodbath effects and more story line please.  

Oh dear, it doesn't sound like this is up my alley at all. ....okay but how much corgi is there for real

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2 hours ago, maxineofarc said:

Oh dear, it doesn't sound like this is up my alley at all. ....okay but how much corgi is there for real

There wasn't a lot, but it felt like they were setting it up to be more in the future episodes. Probably not enough though.  :)

Edited by cardigirl
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I was going to reread the books before this but didn't get around to it. Although it seems that...doesn't really matter. At least they mentioned the couch.  I don't remember Thor at all and thought they were maybe obliquely referencing another humorous British author, Tom Holt's Expecting Someone Taller. If you like Adams and Pratchett, you will like his books too.

Not sure why they felt compelled to move it to Seattle instead of staying in London. The vibe in the books is very specifically British.

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Never heard of the books.  I loved the first episode.  Weird, interesting and the assassin reminded me of Helena on Orphan Black.  Wish it had been her.

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I'm thinking that the throwaway mention of pocket fluff was an Easter egg for the Hitchhiker's Guide Infocom computer game (you need the pocket fluff to finish the game).

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Question, Kavan Smith was the guy arguing with the woman in the hotel at the beginning and also one of the FBI agents, correct?

I thought this was one of the weirder shows I've ever watched. It definitely feels like it will one of those shows that you'll have to rewatch after it's over to catch everything you missed the first time. I'll give it a few more episodes before I decide if I like it.

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2 hours ago, PreviouslyTV said:

Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency's second episode showers us with more questions, but are they the ones we're supposed to ask?

View the full article

The review is more enjoyable than the epiode, although I did LOL at Todd running with the moldy shower curtain super hero cape.
And I enjoyed his sister warding off the bad guys with her drums.
And I did like the reveals and resolutions about the Assassin and her special companion — he's not handcuffed with duct tape anymore, right?

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Not wanting to sound cryptic, but there is the plot and there is the story. The plot in this series seems to me to be too fantastic to think about. If any thing can happen, nothing matters. I suspect the kitten is Patrick Spring. The thing is, there's not really any meaning if it is. Or isn't. But the *story* seems to me to be the contrast between the developing relationships of two couples. The assassin and her kidnap victim on the one hand, and Dirk Gently and Todd Brotzman on the other. I'm pretty sure Todd/Dirk is meant to be Platonic. I suspect the other is going to end up sexual/comic-romantic as the evil twin of Todd/Dirk. But whether I'm guessing right or not, I'm inclined to think this is the heart of the series, insofar as it has a heart. 

Amanda and the Rowdy Three have met cute Hollywood style I think, with sparks flying between total opposites etc. 

Wilson is really season two, if there is one, I'd guess.

Edited by sjohnson

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I get where you'd think the kitten might be Patrick, if the corgi might be his daughter, but they keep saying the kitten "may be a weapon", which I suppose also means it may not...but if it were, that'd also somehow imply Patrick were a weapon. So I don't know if the whole animal-person-switcheroo implication is a 1-for-1 implication here...

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I found this episode considerably less enjoyable than the first.

To me, the story is: what is the relationship between the assassin/kidnapper and Dirk? Why does she want to kill him?

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Every time there's any mention of a dog on this show I keep expecting in the back of my mind that Wilfred is going to appear. I like Elijah Wood but his character on this is so much like his character on Wilfred that it's interfering with the show for me - I keep waiting to find out whose hallucination all of this is, which I wouldn't be so likely to do with a different actor.

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I had to stop after a few minutes. I just wasn't enjoying any aspect of it at all, even the corgi.

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2 hours ago, ratgirlagogo said:

I like Elijah Wood but his character on this is so much like his character on Wilfred that it's interfering with the show for me

Totally. As I watched I was thinking he really needs to pick something very different for his next project -- these are way too similar. Also, I gave up on Wilfred early on so that doesn't bode well.

3 hours ago, possibilities said:

To me, the story is: what is the relationship between the assassin/kidnapper and Dirk? Why does she want to kill him?

There isn't a relationship, and she doesn't *want* to kill him. She doesn't even know who he is (hence the confusion when she almost killed her poor abductee). As a "holistic assassin" there is no motive, the universe simply takes her to people who need to be killed and she obliges. I think she said his name came to her (?). The story, I suppose, is why does the universe want to kill Dirk?

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While digging into Spring's past, Farah and Dirk find their first big clue;  Todd learns he has no safe harbor; Amanda deals with a presence.

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