If you’re like us, you scour the streaming world looking for great series and they come and go: Game Of Thrones. Stranger Things. Ted Lasso. The Last Kingdom.
Really good ones are rare and decent series about basketball?
We’ll get back to you on that.
Okay, getting back to you now.
We can’t say if it’s decent because we haven’t seen it, but a new series is coming about the Los Angeles Lakers and the Showtime era (it’s not streaming since it’s on HBO and you get one episode a week).
The problem with basketball movies is that the basketball is always bad and when you make a series that portrays Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, well, the basketball can’t poossibly be as good as those guys were.
However, this show appears to be less about basketball specifically than it does about the lust and cost to win. Jerry Buss is a major character and he’s determined to revive the Lakers. And from what we saw of the trailer, one theme is the corruption/seduction of Magic Johnson who moves from a conservative Midwestern family to the glitz and bright lights of 1980’s LA.
The cast goes far beyond NBA basketball. Celebrities like Jack Nicholson, Dyan Cannon and Richard Pryor are portrayed. So are Jerry and Lois Tarkanian, Debbie Allen, Paula Abdul and others.
It appears to be focused on the early days of Showtime because while James Worthy does not appear, curiously former Blue Devil Jim Spanarkel does (as portrayed by Dylan Fisher).
Two early casting quibbles: whose idea was it to have Adrien Brody portray Pat Riley? That seems like a fail. And while it wouldn’t be easy to cast Paula Abdul, Carina Conti looks nothing like her. We could certainly be wrong however.
Anyway, it looks like a look at the passion and decadence that made the 1980’s Lakers such an iconic team. It could be a total dud but from here, it looks like fun. Here are a couple of trailers.