Halt and Catch Fire

Binge watching TV series has become one of our favorite past-times. It’s not like we become obsessive and not get dressed, eating only delivered pizza and Chinese food all weekend but we have done that a few times.

One of our latest favorites just started its 3rd season. Halt and Catch Fire airs Tuesday nights at 9:00 EST on AMC.


The show is based on the pre-internet tech drama of the 1980’s. If you remember those days you will appreciate the fashion, music and culture in this series. If you don’t remember those days but want to know what it was like prior to cell phones and laptops this series will be a history lesson.

The first season received lukewarm reviews but the producers promised a more exciting second season and they delivered. The 3rd season is off to a hot start too.

The series starts out set in Texas but moves to the Silicon Valley in season 2.

The show is based on some truth. We actually go crazy trying to figure out who the characters and companies are actually based on.

Joe MacMillan: The shows protagonist is played by Lee Pace. Lee has quite a resume including The Hobbit, The Twilight Saga, Wonderfalls, Pushing Daisies and Soldier’s Girl. From the first few episodes we realize Joe is a complex character. Is he a brilliant tech visionary or a dangerously damaged psychopath? I can’t figure out if his character is based on Steve Jobs or the ex-fugitive; millionaire; anti-virus creator that ran for the President of the United States as a third party candidate, John McAfee or both.



Cameron Howe: Mackenzie Davis plays this annoying, yet we feel sorry for her sometimes character. The college student and gamer drops out and hooks up with MacMillan who may or may not be gay. She is a genius coder and goes on to haphazardly build her own company. I want to wash her clothes and comb her messy hair. Is her character based on Ada Lovelace the first computer programmer?

Gordon and Donna Clark: Scoot McNairy and Kerry Bishe’ were first coupled in Argo. In Halt they portray 80’s college sweethearts turned upwardly mobile engineers that should be a power couple but aren’t. Donna was my favorite character until season 3. I have NO idea who this couple could be based on. Any ideas?

John Bosworth: Toby Huss makes the rounds as father figure first to Mac Millan and then to Cam. He is the one with business management experience. He takes the rap for a crime he didn’t commit and returns to keep the haphazard geniuses in the black. Toby’s credits include King of the Hill, Rescue Dawn, Bedazzled and more.


Season 3 has the characters lives and businesses once again colliding in California.

We enjoy the moments this show reminds us of but as we watch we are shaking our heads wondering where the time has gone. Wasn’t it just yesterday that we had to hurry home to avoid missing a phone call?

Do you know what Halt and Catch Fire means? What are some of your binging favorites?






4 Responses to “Halt and Catch Fire”

  • Thanks for sharing! We have just discovered binge watching. It’s a fun way so spend a cozy evening. My daughters, my mom, and I are binging Gilmore Girls. Shows for the whole daily are much tougher to find. Is this suitable for the 12 year olde and up crowd?

  • LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this series! My introduction to the tech world started in the early 80s when I learned word procession (Wang!) and trained secretarial staff. I fell hopelessly in love with WP, and may not be a writer if I hadn’t been exposed to it in the early days. So I have a deep fondness for that time period. Thanks for this post.

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