I am always wary of fulsome praise - in 30 years of writing reviews I have managed to avoid using words like 'great' and 'best'. That said, my house rule does occasionally come under pressure and with Treme I am in serious danger of shattering that rule. Unsure what to expect - the first episode is packed with interesting characters, excellent dialogue, almost too much to take in at one sitting - but as the series progresses, the characters grow, the dialogue is unerring, and the overall mood gripping. These people are struggling to preserve themselves and the city of New Orleans with courage and dignity and not a little good humour. And then there is the music. Bookended by an excellent theme, there is virtually non-stop music, contemporary R&B, traditional jazz, soul, gospel, contemporary jazz, a little pop and folk and classical, all blended brilliantly into the fabric of the tales being told. As for these life stories being unveiled, all are finely wrought and intelligently developed. So, excellent scripts, storylines, casting, acting, directing, performing. Not a weak link, never a weak moment.