Reviewed by: Ed Coke
I’ll be honest and admit that when I first heard about this extremely funny and popular HBO show called Silicon Valley, I didn’t immediately feel a need to tune-in and find out what all the hype was about. Sure, the show was created by the legendary Mike Judge, stars fellow Canadian and genuine nerd Tom Middleditch, and features some of the comedy world’s best supporting players (T.J. Miller, Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods). Yet the idea of being entertained by a crew of computer wizards on a quest to create the next Facebook somehow didn’t appeal to my open-minded yet discerning sensibilities. Fast forward a year, Silicon Valley is ready to drop the first episode of its second season, now riding a tsunami of critical and public acclaim (in addition to 5 Emmy nominations), and I, like everyone else who’s given it a chance, is hooked like a teenage coder on adderall.
I was lucky enough to get an invite to attend a screening of the Season 2 premiere in Vancouver a couple weeks back. After a refresher showing of the first season’s finale, the jump-off to the new season left no doubt that everyone behind the show is dedicated to keeping the spirit of the hacker hostel crew authentic and ever hilarious. Turnt up and refocused after Middleditch’s “Richard” wins the TechCrunch start-up contest with Pied Piper, the guys find themselves dealing with the implications of being the next big thing in Palo Alto with funding offers aplenty and pressure a-ton. Without revealing too many details about what happens, I will say that the writers tackled the difficult issue of Christopher Evan Welch’s real world passing. He played eccentric Steve Jobs-inspired venture capitalist Peter Gregory on the show, with great tact. They’ve also added the talented Suzanne Cryer in a similarly quirky and endearingly awkward investor role for the new season and alluded to plenty of guest spots from real world tech industry icons. Other shows have survived after loosing one of their funniest characters, take for example Phil Hartman in Newsradio or John Ritter in 8 Simple Rules. Silicon Valley is centred on such a diverse and talented cast, along with the fact that the culture the show is based upon thrives on the ability to bounce back from failures and self reinvention, I have no doubt that it will continue to prosper and remain one of the best shows around. HBO also just launched a new streaming service App called HBO Now, similar to HBO Go, which will allow audiences to subscribe without having any cable or satellite provider. Which is something that’s sure to please a large demographic interested in Silicon Valley who likely don’t even own a traditional TV but still desperately need to know the algorithm required to determine how efficiently one could jack-off an entire audience, among other priceless life lessons that the show provides.