Halt And Catch Fire

What’s going on Internet? For day 5 of WebLogPoMo2024 I want to chat a bit about a TV series called Halt And Catch Fire. I first posted about this show back in June 2020 after finishing the first season so this is a perfect time to jump back in as part of my media theme for WeblogPoMo.

If you’re somewhat interested in the things I write about and share on Flamed Fury I’m positive you’ll enjoy this show.

Halt And Catch Fire is a drama series that aired between 2014 and 2017 across four seasons of ten episodes each.

The show follows the main characters Gordon Clark, Donna Clark, Joe MacMillan, Cameron Howe, and Jon (“Bos”) Bosworth.

Gordon and his wife Donna are both equally skilled engineers. Joe is a visionary tech entrepreneur, Cameron is a super skilled developer, and Bos is an experienced executive. Each have their personal challenges and looking to find their way in the tech industry.

Back in 2020 I mentioned how I didn’t like any of the characters, but after finishing up season four in 2022 I’m happy to say they grew on me.

What I liked about this show was the setting and how each season focused on a particular era in tech/internet history and explores the characters story against what was happening at the time. Spoilers ahead…

  • Season One is set in 1983 during the personal computer revolution. The season follows Joe, Gordon, and Cameron as they attempt to reverse-engineer the BIOS of an IBM PC to create their own IBM clone. By the end of the season, Cameron starts an early Internet gaming startup, Mutiny and recruits Donna to work with her.
  • Season Two kicks off in 1985. Mutiny pivots from gaming to focus on online chat after Donna’s “community” program becomes the most popular thing to do on the network. The season ends Gordon developing an Anti Virus program that Joe ends up pitching to a venture capitalist firm behind Gordon’s back. Eventually everyone ends up relocating to California.
  • Season Three starts off in 1986 sees Mutiny expanding its offerings to include an online trading platform, pushing the boundaries of what an online community can offer at the time. By end of the season, the main characters go their separate ways, with Joe pivoting towards building a web browser, and Cameron and Donna parting ways due to conflicting visions for the future of Mutiny. Cameron realises her dream and ends up becoming a successful game developer for Atari!
  • Season Four, the final season happens between 1990 and 1994 sees the characters immersed in the rise of the early Internet era, and Joe and Gordon are running an ISP. They explore the challenges and opportunities of emerging technology, including search engines, with Joe and Cameron facing off as competitors in the search engine space. Ultimately they’re taken out by Netscape and Yahoo!

Sitting here writing this tonight reminds me what a blast I had watching this show. I’d watch it again if I didn’t have such a backlog of other shows I’m looking forward to watching.

Have you seen it, or going to know? Let me know either way. Laters.

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