We have Showtime, but really, it wasn't pulling its weight in the same way that HBO was. HBO earns its keep for "The Sopranos" and various other shows, but Showtime? I was thinking about dumping it, but then they came out with this incredible new series, "Brotherhood."
If you don't have Showtime, you should mark your calendar for about a year from now to check and see if it's out on DVD yet. It's just awesome. It's the story of two Irish-American brothers in Rhode Island: One's a criminal, one's a family man and politician. The two actors who play Michael and Tommy, the brothers, are just amazing, as is Annabeth Gish, as Tommy's lonely wife, and Dublin-born Fionnula Flanagan as the brothers' mom. It's just engrossing, and Showtime was smart enough to send out all 11 episodes of the first season to critics. We got to binge on it all at once and really sink deeply into the plots and characters. And for this Irish-American who does love "The Sopranos" and its brief peeks into the ethnic identity of Italian-Americans, it was fun to see those little details with Irish accents instead.
Heather Havrilesky has a good review of current doings on the show over at Salon.