When in Manila and tired from school, I usually look forward to going home, plopping onto the couch and watching television. More often than not, I opt for the no- brainer shows so that I relax and have a good laugh, but once in a while, I look forward to shows that make me think. I mean, yeah, you may be asking, “haven’t you had enough thinking from school?” and my response to that is, shows that make you think are fun because (1) you learn a new thing or two and (2) new shows are always great for conversation. An example of such a show would be HBO’s new drama series, Luck. Luck, a nine-episode season from acclaimed director Michael Mann and Deadwood creator David Milch, is a behind-the-track look at the world of horse racing and gambling’s denizens – owners, trainers, jockeys and gamblers.
A friend and I were lucky (hehe) enough to attend HBO Asia’s press conference for said show and were able to watch the pilot episode, and well… To say that the show will really make you think would be an understatement. Initially I was intimidated by the show because, as someone who is completely unfamiliar with the horse racing world, the dialogue was made up of several terminologies that made it difficult to comprehend. That and some of the characters had certain accents, so even if they were speaking lay man’s terms, one would still have to really LISTEN to understand. I’m not going to lie, after the first 15 minutes, I felt dumber than usual, but then I began picking up the terms, became a bit more familiar with the characters and was eventually able to figure out the episode’s different scenarios. Personally, I felt good about myself because I CONQUERED the pilot episode! I SURVIVED!
As difficult as it was for me to get through the pilot episode, I look forward to the succeeding ones because despite the dialogue being difficult, the cinematography, the music and the the race horse scenes were awesome! Can I just share that I never understood as to why people are so pumped up when it comes to horse racing, but via the show and the different scenes, I’d say it was enlightening! Talk about adrenaline rush, the shots of the horses were beautiful and it doesn’t hurt that the music helps set the tone of the scene. So seriously, do yourself a favor and check this new series out!
By the way, here are a few terms that I feel that you should know before watching, hope they help and enjoy the show! :)
Agents: There are three types of agents: Owner’s, Jockey’s and Bloodstock. An Owner’s agent would be his racing manager, dealing with business regarding the trainers and administrative duties. The Jockey’s agent represents his client in procurement of mounts. Bloodstock agents buy and sell horses either privately or at auction sales.
Breeder: The person who owns the Mare (mother) at the time a horse is foaled.
Breezing: A workout in which the horse is asked to run at full stride for a specific distance as part of fitness training.
Bug Boy: An apprentice jockey, so named for the asterisk, or “bug,” that follows the jockey’s name in the racing guide to indicate his weight allowance.
LUCK premieres Monday, February 20 at 9pm on HBO HD / 10pm on HBO. New episodes premiere every Monday at the same time.
GUS DEMITRIOU (Dennis Farinaand) and CHESTER “ACE” BERNSTEIN (Dustin Hoffman)
LONNIE (Ian Hart), RENZO (Ritchie Coster), MARCUS (Kevin Dunn) and JERRY (Jason Gedrick)
WALTER SMITH “THE OLD MAN” (Nick Nolte)
Again, LUCK premieres Monday, February 20 at 9pm on HBO HD / 10pm on HBO. New episodes premiere every Monday at the same time.
Luck: HBO’s new drama series gives outsiders a behind-the-track look at the world of horse racing and gambling