Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Preparing for the Rise of 'Low Winter Sun'

Lennie James (L) and Mark Strong Star in 'Low Winter Sun.' (AMC/Frank Ockenfels)
This Sunday (Aug. 11) at 10 p.m. EST, the next chapter in Detroit's storied television history officially begins. Low Winter Sun, the intense new cop drama that has been filming on the streets of the Motor City for the better part of a year, premieres on AMC. It will occupy the wonderfully cushy time slot following the final episodes of the landmark, Emmy-winning series Breaking Bad, the show it essentially is expected to replace in the eyes and hearts of AMC viewers.

One promo commercial for the new 10-week series describes Detroit as "Broken City." At the moment, it may even be a broke city. But in The New York Times last week, AMC executive vice president Joel Stillerman also describes it as "the most inherently cinematic city in the country, which is both unfortunate and true," and it is that element that may help lift Detroit out of its current perceptual black hole in the national discourse, if only a tiny bit. It is that quality ABC must have sensed when it greenlighted Detroit 1-8-7, the 2010 police series that was canceled after one season, far too soon. There is a horrid yet mesmerizing beauty to Motown, and it surely will be captured within the span of these episodes.

I will be reviewing the debut episode of Low Winter Sun online this week as a blog entry for the Metro Times, where I occasionally write about television, and will link it back here to Big Glowing Box. Subsequent episodes will be recapped and discussed right here.

If you just emerged from your cave on the East Side and have heard nothing of the show, here's the AMC trailer:



And here's virtually everything else you need to know about Low Winter Sun, through a major feature I did on the show for the Metro Times back in March. Mine was the first story of any substance written about the series in America. (Ahem.)

You can read it here.

If you're in the metro Detroit area, you can bet there will be viewing parties a-plenty for the series throughout the area Sunday night – a Hollywood-style screening was staged Monday night in Ann Arbor's Michigan Theater – but here's one of special note. The Baltimore Bar and Grill, a prominent shooting location for the series (albeit under a different name), will host a screening of the show Sunday with music by Detroit blues luminary Jeff Maylin preceding and following the 10 p.m. telecast.

Doors open at 6, music starts at 8 and there is no cover charge. The Baltimore is located at 1234 Randolph Street downtown. Let the Sun rise.

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