Have You Watched “Beef”? (My Thoughts)

Beef is an interesting, entertain, intense show. I’m enjoying it through about half the season, and I recommend it.

I vastly misunderstood what Beef was all about before watching it. I thought it was a road trip movie, but it’s mostly focused in one place (California, I think? Maybe Nevada) where two characters lead very different lives despite having worked hard. Their lives intersect when they let off some steam in a parking lot–a good reminder that you never know who you’re honking your horn at or how they might feel on any given day.

At first, the show escalates to what appears to be a revenge/prank war between the characters. It’s quite possible that will continue for the entire show–it’s a compelling thread to keep the characters lives intertwined.

But that by itself wouldn’t be much of a show. Fortunately, Beef showcases some great writing and direction by diving into both characters’ lives, making them both relatable and intriguing. I constantly want to know more.

I have no idea what Beef is building up to, but so far I’m really enjoying the 30-minute episodes. We aren’t binging it, but I could easily see this being a weekend binge show. Plus, the cast is excellent–it’s great to see a show written, directed, produced, and acted almost entirely by Asian actors.

Have you watched Beef? What did you think? No spoilers, please!

6 thoughts on “Have You Watched “Beef”? (My Thoughts)”

  1. This show totally lost my interest when, I believe in the second episode, the main guy made a racist comment when sitting in a restaurant/bar with his brother. I don’t think that should be normalized regardless of the race in question.

    Reply
    • That’s mostly true, and I do recall a comment he made regarding the race of the husband. Neither were in any way normalized, though–it was very clear to me in the way they were presented that his perspective is jaded and inappropriate.

      Reply
      • The comment I’m referring to is when he’s telling the brother to find a Korean girl to marry (so far so good) but then he teases him by saying Do you want to have bug eyed kids? referring to white kids. And doesn’t seem like anybody in the online-sphere even flinched. That kinda killed the character (and the writing to be honest) for me.

        Reply
        • I hear you, and I’m sorry for the way that line impacted you. My perception is that the line was written to make us flinch, whether or not people decided to discuss their reactions to it online. There’s lots of flinch-worthy stuff on the show, but the actions and words of the characters are not written as appropriate or normalized, even from the very first scene. We’re meant to be disturbed by them, just as you are.

          Reply
  2. Road rage gone wrong = a beef. I finished the series and was curious to see where it went when I got to about where you’re at. NO SPOILERS – enjoy the remaining episodes.

    I too am sorry the other commenter was offended. I remember when HBO used to be known as an edgy Paid channel, say pre Y2K. I appreciate that today HBO creates so much new content and a wide variety of content – in TV series shows – and that they sometimes maintain a bit of an edge.

    Some people will be offended – not only by language, but by situations (see Euphoria & high school drug use). I suspect with the popularity of so many paid streaming channels we have lost a little of the acceptable edginess in dialogue that happens in real life. In this show – it is just a little more shocking because it was the less heard on TV “reverse” racism from Asians towards whites. Art is created to shock – it shocked. I think it did its job and does not continue as an every episode thing where it would lose its shock value.

    Reply
    • Thanks, Chris! I think that’s well said about the shock value. I’m now around episode 8, and I’m impressed by how deep the show goes into these characters.

      Reply

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