May I echo R3s words? I don't know how Piven continues to get work. He's always this grinning, out-of-character goof! The production values on this show are wasted on him. Really, no one else could have played that part?
Somehow business drama typically fails on television.
I swear British equity hired Piven to sabotage the show because they don't like giving jobs to Americans.
Piven gives perhaps the worst performance I can recall seeing in many years. And he keeps doing some annoying thing as though he's acclimating to new dentures or new tooth veneers or something rascally-rabbitty-toothy and wildly disconcerting.
The actress playing Selfridge's wife is almost equally bad (and, had she had a lick of sense, would have given up her cooch for the Ryan Gosling-ish artist, who may be the only redeeming element in the show.)
There's an interesting documentary in there, but not, I suspect, a good series or mini-series.
How anyone makes his way down Oxford Street at Selfridge's closing time is a mystery. The pavement is chockablock with employees lingering about waiting for assignations.
Oliver Jackson-Cohen is the only redeeming aspect of the show, but just for eye candy. You could watch his parts with the sound off.
If you check out his Facebook, he's rather obsessed with posting pictures of himself on red carpets, etc.
Piven is so remarkably bad it feels almost like a skit -- any minute they'll break into some Monty Python music. So, so bad.
Poor Miss Mardle - and that silly Kitty.
Question: were they really snorting coke in early 1900s London - surely that came in with the jazz age and the 20s and the bright young things? I hardly think Edwardians were coked out of their minds, like the actress Selfridge is banging ?
Can't wait for Series 2.
Unbearably boring and bad show. Piven can't carry it off, either.
If I'd known Oliver Jackson Cohen and his hairy chest were in it, I might have watched it.
One episode was enough for me.
So long, suckah!
You all are being very hard on Jeremy. I am sure he is still bravely trying to recover from his mercury poisoning and that naturally affects his craft.
Yes, R14, the man is clearly recovering from a grievous head injury:
Season finale is on now.
Jesus Christ, Jeremy Piven is AWFUL. High school acting.
The Frenchman is hot, though.
Jeremy Piven is a one-note actor. He can't play it serious for five minutes.
Piven is a one note hack.
Worst Masterpiece ever.
It's as if the show has been filmed without Piven and he is later added after saying his lines in front of a green screen.
Piven is all that has already been said in each reply. But no one has identified the remarkable ping and the purses dropping every time he opens his non-talented mouth.
[quote]Piven is all that has already been said in each reply. But no one has identified the remarkable ping and the purses dropping every time he opens his non-talented mouth.
I've always thought he was gay.
In that respect he is channeling Ryan Reynolds, one of the biggest pingers of all time. Where, by the way, is Mr. Reynolds these days?
I've gotten to really enjoy Mr Selfridge.
Last night's season-ender was quite good, wrapping up a number of storylines and removing some characters.
Piven's performance has improved over the episodes... I like how the character really has a public face/persona and a private face/persona that are at odds with each other.
Mr. Grove is such a creepy man, I can't believe his reason for marrying Doris.
Selfridge being humiliated publicly with a stage production? Whoa. And his family seeing the soww too!
Henri (who I thought was gay) leaving for NYC? Surprise.
The next series is going to jump time, moving forward to 1914... we don't get those episodes here in the states until 2014. Damn.
Good god, I agree with every word in this thread, minus the OP.
Mama, get the smelling salts!
R23, I agree with you. This series really grew on me and I'm really enjoying it. I think the actor who plays Mr. Grove is a major ginger hottie, whoa! And Henri is a major stud! Are these two actors gay in real life? They both aren't married.
I never miss an episode.
Piven is annoying, but, in weighing the balance between, on one scale, enduring him, with, on the other, the production design, writing, casting,count me as a fan.
Plus, I love the theme music. It's perfect.
I agree with r23 and r25. I like the show, find it more watchable than Downton Abbey, and am impressed that even Jeremy Piven's presence onscreen fails to ruin my enjoyment of the series. It mystifies me that he's still getting work... perhaps he's better tolerated among British audiences than American ones?
In any case, I think it's a good ensemble production, and the sets, hairstyles, clothes, and sociopolitical elements fascinate me.
I lost interest after a couple episodes.
And by no stretch of anyone's warped imagination can [italic]Mr. Selfridge[/italic] compare to the fantastic [italic]Downton Abbey[/italic].
In any case, I think it's a good ensemble production, and the sets, hairstyles, clothes, and sociopolitical elements fascinate me.
I agree with you R27. It is so interesting how he manged to keep the department store successful back then,and the interaction of various historic events that played a role in this store is interesting and fun. Mr. Selfridge comes off to be a very likeable person because he embraced the Suffragette because he knew what it was like to be an under dog in society coming from a very poor background.
I think you can't compare and contrast the two shows, Downtown Abbey and Mr. Selfridge because they are coming from two different perspectives on what life once was like in England. One show is about a high society trying to famliy thrive while the other is about making some man's dream becoming a reality and making a business thrive. However, both shows are about people who are trying to stay afloat despite the obstacles that they have to deal with in their lives. I think they both offer some interesting things.
I watched it last night (having only seen one other episode previously) and I was surprised to see that it has been renewed because I find it very tedious. Jeremy Piven really is a terrible actor, completely charmless.
For those wondering how Piven got the role - I'm pretty sure he is one of the producers. In other words, a vanity project. The BBC didn't go after him - he went after the BBC.
Piven is the weak link in this show... all he offers is an imitation of Andy Hardy, with more grinning.
The rest of the cast is very good to excellent, even in the small roles.
PBS is such a problem. They program so oddly, as if they don't have the confidence in their own audience. Yeah, I'm getting older, but I love PBS programming. I'd watch it over anything else on a Sunday night - it's frustrating that with Downton especially they stall airing it, when you know it's on somewhere else and can spoil the whole season for yourself if you want. And their website (and local channel websites) are a total mess... you can find what you want if you've got about two hours.
Has Call the Midwife ended? They've condemned Nonnatus House and the auditorium
Airing shows months after they air in Britain reeks of pre-Internet thinking.
I wanted to watch Selfridge, but I couldn't get past Piven's supremely amateurish performance, so only watched the first episode.
PBS doesn't always air gold, but I don't recall them running anything with such a bad starring actor before.
R33, I think there's another episode of CTM; it would be what's called "the Christmas episode".
I've enjoyed CTM so much from the beginning. I love the entire cast and the different storylines.
I was so pleased to see the adorable Jimmy last night. Who is that actor? Cute, cute, cute, sexy as well.
Regarding Mr Selfridge, I don't think Piven is amateurish in his acting, rather he has to put across the larger than life, amiable, ever-grinning and too eager Selfridge. When the character's at home or alone in his office, he's quite different and far more low-key, exposing what I think is his inferiority complex.
I made it through 45 minutes of the first episode, and didn't care enough to finish. I tried two other times, but the bad writing and the incompetence of Piven drove me away.
But, yes, really - haven't we talked about this mess enough?
[quote] I don't think Piven is amateurish in his acting
I disagree. He was not playing for the period at all. He was playing it as if his character lived in California in the 21st Century. Entourage: the Costume Party!
He just doesn't appear to have much range as an actor.
I blame the writers, too. They put words in his mouth that no person of that era would say.
But it's a pity to spend that type of money on a series, only to cast someone incompetent in the lead role.
So will the Christmas episode be the end of the CTM series? I mean "series" in the American sense, not in the UK sense where "series" means season.
Is that the death knell for the entire show?
It's so much better than Selfridge.
How do we reconcile the huge PING of Mr. Piven with his reputation for rape and sexual assault on women from the time he was a very young man?
Wanted to slug Mr. Grove last night - what a shit.
Piven's acting, however, still isn't very good.
[quote]How do we reconcile the huge PING of Mr. Piven with his reputation for rape and sexual assault on women from the time he was a very young man?
I always thought Piven was gay. But I have a very good friend who worked with him and he told me that Piven is not gay (for reasons I can't go into without revealing my source). A cokewhore, but not gay.
I liked the show, otherwise, but Piven was not good in it.
[quote]I disagree. He was not playing for the period at all. He was playing it as if his character lived in California in the 21st Century. Entourage: the Costume Party!
Couldn't have described his acting better!
Thought I read SELFRIDGE would end at Episode 10. Why are we getting a second season and how many episodes are included?
R44, I don't know how many episodes total are going to run, but the next series begins in 1914, a five year jump in time.
Perhaps the ratings for each series will determin who many more episodes are produced.
I worked on a P.O.S. film that Piven was in.
I never thought he pinged, but he was a douche, as was the director and other cast.
[quote]The BBC didn't go after him - he went after the BBC.
The BBC has absolutely nothing to do with "Mr Selfridge."
I'm loving the ultra-feminine Gibson Girl hairstyles.
On a more shallow note, I want M. LeClair inside me quite deeply.
I kept hoping this would get better and Piven would find his stride but OH MY GOD this man is awful in this role. There must have been 100 other actors that would have been capable of this role.
He's just horrible.
R49 What do you expect? He's a one-note actor. All he can do is his "Entourage" character.
Season premiere tonight.
Iirc, the story will pick-up five years later, but then, can someone remind me of what happened with the Mrs. Selfridge, daughter and the artist?
JP is almost 50. When is he going to find a nice lady to marry and settle down with?
Should be called "Masterpiece Community Theater."
[quote]JP is almost 50. When is he going to find a nice lady to marry and settle down with?
Maybe it will happen after the death of the rat that lives on top of his head.
Worst toupée ever.
If it's five years later, did they recast the children? I assume this has already aired in the UK, perhaps one of our British cousins can advise us.
I suppose all of you who dislike this show love the trash that is on Bravo.
It IS a good show. Piven does just fine. If any of you would bother to read up (if you can) you would learn the real Mr. Selfridge was somewhat flamboyant and over the top--THIS is why Piven plays him that way.
Stop knocking quality scripted shows or you will end up with nothing but housewife trash shows.
But you would like that.
The costume design is an eyegasm.
I Like this series.
Piven improved some as the season went on. And the rest of the cast is good. And the store itself is the most interesting part of it.
I pictured Lady Loxley's old man to BE an old man.
i did too. he's quite a villain I don't see anything entertaining about him.
I love Piven, I know he's an asshole but I think he's hotter than hell. Love his manic energy, he's so masculine.
That was Henri?
I can't stand Frances O'Connor. She's like a prehistoric Katherine McPhee.
Ruh-roh. Is Delphine up to no good?
I like her character and the actress who is playing her.
So who's better at portraying an American spouse in England: Frances O'Connor or Elizabeth McGovern?
Elizabeth McGovern, r67.
As much as I'm enjoying MS, Frances O'Connor seems glaringly miscast.
I'd have to vote for McGovern... who plays stupid so beautifully.
I think Delphine is going to have those Selfridge's three waying in no time.
Forgot to ask- Did anybody else think the pacing of tonight's episode was a bit slow? My attention wandered a bit; something that never happened before while watching this.
[quote] I think Delphine is going to have those Selfridge's three waying in no time.
It hasn't aired on the West Coast yet. Is it a full two-hour episode, or did they pad it with some crap like they do with "Downton"?
I hope that Lady Loxley pushes Lord Loxley over a cliff.
90 minutes, r72
it's just ... I think it's just adequately written... that tango intercut was amateur in execution.
I swear I saw Norma Desmond's robe or caftan or whatever it was from the entrance scenes from Sunset Blvd. It was dead center of the fashion display in the first episode.
Thank God they've dealt with that mother... she sponged everything out of every scene she was in.
This season is much better than last year, for some reason Piven is less annoying, maybe I've accepted him in the role finally. I hated him in the last season.
Its BBC counterpart, The Paradise, was not renewed for a third season. There will be another one of Selfridge and they jump ahead to 1919.
I do hate the french guy, I wish they'd kill him off, but we're stuck with him for the moment.
Hey everyone, get a load of R57, who only watches QUALITY television.
Go fuck yourself, R78. What's your damage?
MR. SELFRIDGE is better than 98% of the rest of what's on TV, here or abroad.
If you don't like it, don't watch. Problem solved.
OK, just finished the first ep of Season 2. It's still enjoyable, and I agree that Piven has dialed it back a bit. I watched the documentary short about Selfridge's that aired afterward and discovered that Selfridge was around 58 at the time this episode is set (1914.) Piven, and the way the character acts, seem much younger.
I love the costumes and the sets, but the wigs on the women are really atrocious. Or is that what they're going for? Are they supposed to represent women who actually wore wigs, which weren't as nice as those available today? The worst by far is Lady Loxley's. And a couple of the shopgirls are pretty awful as well.
I'm fascinated with the lovely complexions of both Miss Towler and Miss Hawkins. Peaches and cream British beauties, both of them. And although I usually am attracted to darker, more ethnic men (like Henri and the Colleano cousins), I find Mr. Thackeray oddly appealing for some reason.
[quote]I watched the documentary short about Selfridge's that aired afterward and discovered that Selfridge was around 58 at the time this episode is set (1914.) Piven, and the way the character acts, seem much younger.
No one wants to watch a TV show about a 58 year old. Even on PBS.
So, Miss Towler is a department of one? No support, no staff at all, and she's give a few days to design and execute displays for the entire store?
I thought the documentary short was better than the episode. I think they're going to totally fictionalize it... I'm seeing a Lady Mae / Selfridge hook up. And a cheesy who killed Lord Loxeley?
[quote]I find Mr. Thackeray oddly appealing for some reason.
It's the repression, bursting at the seams.
Speaking of seams, I loved all of Agnes' clothes last night. Very stylin.
I assume we're supposed to take it that she's not quite up to the job and so Henri's arrival will be welcomed, not resented? She did quite a lot of tense frowning and some sighing last night, but other than that I couldn't quite figure out how her day was going.
I agree with the poster who said the women's wigs were bad - they are very, very bad.
Agnes and Henri's love affair - in fact their entire storyline - is not believable. It would never ha;pen like that in real life.
I don't like how the little gay boy department manager is evil (Thomas's evil cousin?). What are gay men always shown as gossipy, vicious, runty and traitorous like this??? Henri is noble, long-suffering, big and brawny. Give us gay men a break! Give us just ONE redeeming character!
It's interesting that when it comes time to cook up gay characters they go for those cliches every time. I wonder why.
R87 Do we know that he's gay?
[quote] If you don't like it, don't watch. Problem solved
Everyone here is allowed to hate watch any show they like. This is not TWoP.
We don't approve of hall monitors in any threads, let alone tv threads. Your opinion is not the only one and people who disagree with you are not banned.
If you don't like it, start your own messageboard where only your opinions are allowed.
[quote] love the costumes and the sets, but the wigs on the women are really atrocious
What about Piven's? His is the worst of all.
I'm guessing Delphine is up to no good. I only ever seen Polly Walker play a bad girl character. She was great as Atia of the Julii (sp?) on Rome.
I never watched the first series. Does the character played by Martin Freeman's partner (the one who plays his wife on sherlock) really need to go to Geneva to see her brother or is she pregnant and planning an Edith Crawley-like European getaway?
"Delphine" is not exactly a common name, yet we have two series with characters who share that name: "Selfridge," and Kathy Bates's character on "American Horror Story: Coven."
Loving Katherine Kelly as Lady Mae. I miss her as Becky on Coronation Street.
She seemed a little less campy to me in the first two episodes... and her husband is irredeemable. I wonder if she's to be the new Mrs. Selfridge... cause there's not much point in keeping the present one.
SPOILER ALERT: In real life, Mrs. S. died in 1918, so if they keep to the facts, she won't be around in the next series.
Piven is best when he can act like an idiotic dick. He got the chance to do so towards Delphine in this episode. Piven is no good when he plays a happy dappy grinning nice guy.
Mrs Selfridge dies and does not return in the next season.
There were so many ominous comments about the upcoming war that I'm sure we're going to lose a few members of the male staff over the next few episodes.
[quote]It IS a good show. Piven does just fine. If any of you would bother to read up (if you can) you would learn the real Mr. Selfridge was somewhat flamboyant and over the top--[bold]THIS is why Piven plays him that way[/bold].
What's Piven's excuse for all of his other over the top acting?
I like Mrs. Selfridge, now that she has grown a spine.
Mrs. Selfridge does indeed die... of embarrassment.
The melodrama really gets ratcheted up to an incredible degree. And the plot holes! Now we know what happened to flight MH370... it got lost in one of Mr. Selfridge's immense plot holes.
The sharks are circling in the English Channel and Mr. Selfridge wants to jump.
I wonder who will die on the Lusitania?
I'd bet she dies from the Spanish flu that killed so many.
Is Oliver Jackson-Cohen still in this?
Piven's acting is to smile and show his big teeth. The Frenchman is really a treat, glad he was reintroduced.
Mmmmmm, Henri.. Although I liked him better with the beard. Delicious hairy bastard!
Awww, I hope Lady Loxley doesn't cross Selfridge.
Perk up, writers! That was disappointing.
Geez, this is the first series since "Brothers and Sisters" that is never miss TV for me, and now I've gotta worry that this will nosedive, too.
I liked tonight's show. I think Lord Loxley is up to something with the freakin Germans.
Lady Loxley is do fun to watch, I just love her.
I can't wait for that horrible Frances O'conner to die,
Another Henri fan.. Just gorgeous.
Wow, Miss Mardle looks so much better with MONEY!
R101 not so far. If DRACULA gets cancelled, maybe he will come back?
Finally figured out that Miss Mardle is Dr. Watson's (and the actor who plays him) wife on SHERLOCK.
The son now speaks with an English an accent. I would have thought the director and casting people would have wanted an actor to use an american accent. Or, are we to believe that the kid picked up that pattern of speaking while at boarding school?
The Lady Loxley Hour coming up.
I like this show. Sure beats watching anything on Bravo or NBC (except Chicago Fire and SVU.)
Has reality TV killed your brains so that even The Brady Bunch would seem like Shakespeare to you?
Piven is acting like the real Mr. Selfridge acted, girls. The man was over the top and kind of showy--look him up. It's an interesting look at the retail business too. Mr. Selfridge got his start at the legendary Marshall Field's in Chicago.
Not everything famous has New York roots.
Queens, save your bitchy comments--I am not reading them.
Rumble! Loxley v. Delphine
They should do a cross over... Mrs. Harry Gordon Selfdrige and Cora, Countess of Grantham could try to out stupid one another.
My money's on Mrs. Selfridge. At least Cora knows how to dress.
Tom Goodman-Hill (Grove) is a superb actor. I think he's the best of the male cast.
He's good. I don't quite get his storyline. This show is entertaining but there's not much to it. Makes Downton seem like a Stoppard play.
Miss Towler needs a new dress.
They shoulda hired the actress who played O'Brien as Lady May's lady's maid.
I'd let that Belgian cover me in chocolat.
Prediction: Mrs. Selfridge dies and it's May vs. Delphine in season three... fighting for the Selfrod.
I'm sick of dull Mrs. Selfridge and her Miss Priss ways.
Fuck your husband.
[quote]Fuck your husband.
Everyone else does, why shouldn't she?