For a lot of us, HBO’s Vinyl was one of the year’s major disappointments. There was so much hype, so much money, and so many awesome ideas thrown at the show, that the abysmal result was almost staggering. A huge swath of the audience gave up nearly immediately (making the pre-cancellation announcement of a new showrunner and renewal all the more perplexing), because as it turned out, Vinyl was delivering on absolutely nothing we were led to expect.
What were we expecting? How about:
—An energetic depiction of a very specific time and place as a turning point in the history of music.
—An authentic but stylized portrayal of that musical movement.
—A true, deep, Almost-Famous-level celebration of music (on, like, ACTUAL vinyl), celebrating both the art and the fans.
—An honest look at the oft-brushed-under-the-carpet roles of women and minorities in the forming of the art and the era.
—Same goes for the complication like glamorized drug use and hidden (or celebrated) exploitation.
—A whole lot of awesome music.
Are those the things you were looking for in Vinyl? And did Vinyl turn out to be a huge disappointment? Well, it looks like we’ve been given another shot.
Who knows if Baz Luhrmann’s The Get Down is going to be any good, or at least any better than Vinyl? But at least we get another chance to invest in a cool concept, with an impressive budget and a great/hopefully not wasted cast and soundtrack.