The second episode was actually slightly better, it may have been just that it was a more interesting subject matter (bull-riding!), but I think it also had a lot to do with the way it was edited. Whenever the guys would be getting ready to leave the gate, there was a heart-beating noise, adding to the intensity, and there were lots of awesome and gory replays. Guess I'm just a little bit bloodthirsty, but this one actually made this workplace look life-threatening.
And the men that they found to follow, leading up to a big Bull-riding event, were interesting characters. I'd actually tune into another episode just about these guys, but you get the impression that this isn't a lasting career. There is a medical team on staff, and they are busy. They treat something like 1 in 10 of the riders for an injury at a given event and there are about 40-odd riders at each one. Those aren't great odds. And we're not talking a scratch. One guy had a couple of cracked ribs, they didn't even bother getting him x-rays. They just taped him up and sent him on his way. Another guy got his leg stepped on by a bucking bull. He considered himself lucky because the bull didn't shatter his leg. Instead, in the most disgusting footage I've seen in ages, part of his muscle was sticking out of his leg. They shoved it back in and stitched him up. And injured dude's first question wasn't if he'd walk again. Instead he wanted to know how long it would be before he could get back into the arena and onto one of these beasts. I'm thinking there might be some unreported brain damage going on here.
The other thing that was kind of great about this episode was that these nutty men aren't saving lives. They are just out here to put on a show and win some cash. The Coast Guard is a nice job to have, they airlift cruise ship passengers, they do search and rescue for plane crashes... its helpful and you can understand why someone would put their life on the line in order to save others. But bull-riding is just an adrenaline rush and it is for the cash. No good deeds. To me that's more compelling for my television watching. Oh, and there was a bull named Fraggle Rock. Which earned some bonus points for this episode too. I guess this series is worth a look, but not every week, and only when the subject matter is interesting.
And then there's the scripted dramas. Which are mediocre. Starting with Valentine. Which was kind of entertaining when I read it as the book Gods Behaving Badly (though it isn't actually based on that, even thought it has a remarkably similar concept). But here, it's lacking any charm. And that's made worse by the fact that it stars Jaime Murray, who played the hateful Lila on Dexter last season. It's hard to get past the anger with her to see her as the goddess of love, Grace (aka Aphrodite). Anyway "Grace" and her kids are living in modern day life, trying to help the mere mortals find their soulmates and be happy. There doesn't seem to be cash involved, but it is for some sort of unexplained make good purpose. But they can't use a lot of magic, as it weakens them as a group. (I don't remember this rule from Greek lore, but Gods Behaving Badly also uses this whole limited magic concept... so if it isn't part of the myth, then I think it was "made up.")