Making Fun of the Silicon Valley Makes for Great TV
First things first: If you are not watching HBO's new comedy Silicon Valley, get on it. Now three episodes in, the show is proving to be one of the funniest HBO has released in some time. The show follows Richard Hendricks (Thomas Middleditch) a developer working for a very Google-esque company, Hooli, based out of the computer capitol of the world, Silicon Valley. Richard develops a compression somethingorother that is meant to be a music finding website, but it turns out he's created some sort of piece of compression brilliance. Once this fact is discovered, Richard is faced with a very serious decision: Sell the algorithm to Hooli for $10 million dollars or work with eccentric venture capitalist, Peter Gregory (the late Christopher Evan Welch) and retain all rights and potential profits. Richard takes the hard road.
Photo: Jaimie Trueblood HBO
The plot in and of itself is fine enough; it's an underdog story with a very discomfited, nerdy underdog. But it's the world surrounding Silicon Valley that makes the show such an interesting one.
There have been many television programs where the surrounding city is as much a character as the actors on the show. Breaking Bad's dusty New Mexico landscape was as important to the plot as any Tuco or Gus were. House of Cards' corrupt Washington DC is the cold, silent character that doesn't speak words, but speaks volumes. And Sex and the City's New York should have received top billing. But the way that San Francisco manifests itself into Silicon Valley is unique. We're not so much seeing the city itself, as we are clobbered over the head with the idiocy of its inhabitants, and they are certainly not making a good case for anyone to look into real estate. If this is the Bay Area, then it is filled with incredibly annoying people!
This story continues on the next page.