Thursday, March 25, 2010

Let's Talk 'Lost': Live Forever


Hopefully I'll actually talk about Lost before the conclusion of this final season, but any review that compares any show to Buffy and anything having to do with the Buffyverse has to be shared! :)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

One down, one to go...

NBC's freshman comedy was - finally! - renewed last week. Looks like the only show I'm anxiously awaiting word of renewal on now is the CW's Life Unexpected.

Below, just a few examples of why "Community" is quite possibly my favorite new show of this television season and arguably my favorite comedy on NBC's - finally! - solid Thursday night comedy lineup (yes, yes, the comedy snobs will argue that "30 Rock" is the best comedy on tv, much less just on NBC Thursdays, but again, below, just a few examples of how "Community" and not "30 Rock" has me cracking up every, better music! I don't think that comes across in any of the clips...that's just an observation!)

Four reasons why season four of Big Love was a Big Failure for me

1. Only 9 episodes - now, British tv shows make a habit of airing short, tight seasons, but the shows are planned and written accordingly. Big Love tried to cram a whole season's worth of stories into what was essentially half a season and for that reason...

2. Stories were rushed and dropped left and right - Roman was murdered, the end. Nicki's love for Ray was rebuffed and he left, the end. Nicki has a new daughter? The end. I could go on and on. You can't tell half a story and then not deal with the consequences or fallout. That's just lazy writing. And speaking of lazy writing...

3. Storylines were introduced (and dropped) just for the sake of creating another storyline. That's fine if it happens organically, but not if story A is simply a catalyst for story B. For example, Ben and Margene kissed. There's been a sexual tension and attraction there for years, but it seemed to have been dealt with and been finished last season, only to surface again this year so that Bill could kick Ben out and have to deal with his own issues of being kicked out by his own father for being a young male in competiton with the old men for women on the compound. That in itself could've been an extremely interesting plot except that, back to reason #2, it was completely dropped.

4. Then, we had storylines out of left field, or I guess more accurately, straight out of a soap opera. Sarah and Barb hit an Indian girl with their car. Sissy Spacek's entire character and storyline. Nicki's ex-husband is explicitly harvesting and implanting eggs and implicitly committing incest. Margene no longer loves Bill. Nicki now loves Bill. Ana is pregnant with Bill's baby but her fiance Goran is going to be departed so Margene enters into a green card marriage with him and now she loves Goran. Just terrible, terrible stories.

The worst part is, there was so much potential. If the writers had just taken a second to be like, "Hey, we only have nine episodes here but enough material for 16, maybe we should pace ourselves." Bill's campaign for senator had potential. Barb's struggles at the casino and blooming friendship with Tommy had potential. Bill kicking Ben out and facing those demons from his past could've been an amazing story. Nicki and Ray needed to be played out longer. And the one storyline that really, really worked for me, new prophet Alby's gay affair with his "enemy" Dale, the shame they both felt because of the way their religions view homosexuality, the true love they found in each other despite that, and both Dale's inability to overcome the shame and Alby's breakdown and dealing with things in the aftermath of Dale's suicide...that was a story that was actually well written, worked organically, moved other storylines but had merit itself, and didn't make characters act out of character like so many of the other players this season, but again, even this story felt rushed and deserved to be treated better.

Highly disappointed, Big Love. And HBO. Don't even know who to blame but I do know my disappointment was enough that I'm wary to come back for the fifth season...

Friday, February 19, 2010

Entering television renewal limbo...Eyes on Life Unexpected and Community, you're a pain in my butt not letting me link your stories...anywho, this time of year usually gives me severe agita, after the early renewals have been announced and before the May upfronts have gotten here, but this year, I'm feeling pretty okay. Most of the shows I've fallen in love with over the past couple of years have gotten early pickups for next season and several of my on the bubble shows really aren't so on the bubble - so let's see...

Chuck, which almost didn't come back this season, seems to be a good bet to return next season, so I'm choosing not to worry.

Better Off Ted seems to be pretty much dead. I'm heartbroken. But I guess better to know now than to spend the next three months with heartburn waiting to get the bad news. I'm soothing my heartache by watching old episodes on Hulu. Like Arrested Development before, I don't think I'll ever get tired of watching this show.

Which just leaves two shows for me to worry about, both in their freshman year - the CW's Life Unexpected and NBC's Community. LUX has a lot of potential - a lot - and not only is it great to have Shiri Appleby back on tv (the show has inspired me to go back and rewatch my old Roswell DVDs) but Kristoffer Polaha really deserves to finally find a good show, a show that won't get cancelled after just a few episodes (yes, he has a guest role on Mad Men, but it's very tiny, and I'm not counting it) - not only is he oh so pretty, but he can act, too. As for Community - it's quirky, it's funny, it's got heart, it actually makes me laugh out loud, and it perfectly rounds out NBC's 4-comedy Thursday block in a way that this network hasn't had in years and years and years. For that reason alone, they should bring back this show.

So maybe it's just those two shows, but it looks like I'm going to be suffering from agita for the next couple of months anyway...grr, argh...

Life Unexpected will be moving to Mondays at 8 p.m., CW
Community, Thursdays at 8 p.m. on NBC

Watch them, ya dig?!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A bit of USA cross promotion...Psych v. Raw

...but cuz I love Psych, I don't care. Dule Hill was the guest host on WWE's Monday Night Raw last night. James Roday was also supposed to be there but ended up in the hospital for an appendectomy. Too bad. I had missed Roday on my tv, though Dule more than held his own with the likes of wrestlers John Cena and The Miz (I'm sorry, but he will always be dorky Mike from the Real World's Back to New York season...), and reminded me that it's not just Psych's Gus that I love, but Dule, Magic Head!! Anyway, while Roday's absence was disappointing, the wait to see him back on my tv is over, with the winter premiere of Psych tomorrow night (it's on a new night, Wednesdays - TAKE NOTE!!) John Cena is guest starring in the episode as Juliet's brother. We'll see how that turns out. But very little puts a damper on my Psych love, and I'm just thrilled to have Shawn and Gus' awesomely adorable bro-tastic bromance back on my tv.

Be there! Watch it, y'heard?

I think there's some wrestling in the first clip...I apologize in advance. Use it as an opportunity to determine for yourself whether the WWE should be considered a sport or a soap opera...!

Get all the latest WWE DVD's and Media at!

'How I Met Your Mother' gets an early renewal - From Inside the Box - Zap2it

'How I Met Your Mother' gets an early renewal - From Inside the Box - Zap2it

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Mary finally gives in to True Blood-mania...almost

Ok, so I finally caved and started watching HBO's True Blood and as a vampire junkie, I am enjoying it, though I'm not sure yet that it's as AWESOME as every person claims...though it is by FAR and AWAY light years better than Twilight, which, let's face it, has set the bar embarrassingly low for all other vamp-lit out there. I don't have the time to go into this show in-depth at the moment, so let's just quickly list a few of the things I'm enjoying - scruffy Sam, Eric Northman, Jessica and Hoyt as a couple, Lafayette's eye makeup, Jason's pure and child-like stupidity, and the news that Joe Manganiello (who I've loved, loved, LOVED for years in all his hilarious guest spots as Brad on How I Met Your Mother) will be playing the role of Alcide, and now focus on the one minor but HUGE thing that is almost single-handedly killing any enjoyment I am having of this show - the make-up.

Now, to be fair, I don't know if I should be blaming the make-up artists, or the lighting director for how the make-up looks, but it's BEYOND distracting. Every single frickin' character looks like they have foundation and powder and blush and any other thing in the make-up bag CAKED on their faces. Who knows...maybe the actors need it. Maybe they're hideous without it. But it's so noticeable, it's so distracting, that I almost can't watch the show because I can't focus on anything else.

I do enjoy the Southern accents, though. As someone susceptible to accents, I'm thinking in a Southern accent right now and it's very relaxing, almost relaxing enough to make me feel better about the distracting make-up/lighting job. C'mon HBO. We expect better from you.

Big Love gets big love

Yes, I totally big love this show. The fourth season premiered on Sunday, and while it felt a little rushed and disjointed - I imagine the whole season might as I believe there are only nine episodes...HBO, we need to talk - it did set some intriguing storylines in motion, namely the fallout of Roman Grant's death, Alby's gay liaison with the man who turns out to be the trustee put in charge by the government of Juniper Creek's money, the mystery surrounding Nicki's daughter and her creepy ex, and the upcoming wedding and departure of Sarah. I still couldn't give a crap about Lois and Frank wanting to kill each other or about Bill in general, and I sorely missed Joey and the storyline they started and dropped about Nicki and cute DA Ray, but this show continues to intrigue me, and I'm excited to see where they go from here.

Welcome back, Chuck!

That Chuck being the show Chuck, which NBC has, in a surprising but much appreciated fashion, been nurturing, and which returned this week for its third season. The first two episodes had me worried - not because the show revamped itself at the end of the last season, enabling Chuck to not only know about new things, but to physically learn new things, but because the tone of the show felt different. Monday's episode was a reassuring return to form, though, the Chuck we've all grown to love and that we've all sorely missed. It didn't hurt that Captain Awesome (one of the best characters EVER, btw, because not only does he rock at everything, but even though he knows he rocks at everything, he's still the nicest guy) was a major player. How I missed my Chuck and my Captain Awesome...and oh how I missed my weekly doses of Adam Baldwin! If Monday's episode is a sign of the season to come, I think we have another great season to look forward to.

Brandon Routh, Kristin Kreuk, Angie Harmon will all be guest starring this season (some in multiple-ep arcs)...NBC may have monkeys running their programming department 95 percent of the time, but let's thank those monkeys for showing their faith in this show by watching it...

Mondays on NBC!!!!

If I could, I would post every Better Off Ted episode here, but that might be a bit much so here's just a taste of WHY YOU SHOULD WATCH THIS SHOW!!

Scrubs 2.0 blows

So, Scrubs this season is just not doing it for me.

I adore Scrubs. I think Scrubs, whenever it was on top of its game, was one of the funniest and most moving shows out there. I recently rewatched last season's "series" finale and it was pretty much a pitch-perfect way to say goodbye to all our friends at Sacred Heart.

Now, I miss my favorite shows way longer than is probably sane or healthy (hence my addiction to TV on DVD) but when ABC decided to renew Scrubs, albeit with only half the old cast members and in a totally new environ, med school, I was apprehensive to say the least.

Now, I've tried and tried, every single week, mostly now begrudgingly, to get back into this show, but although Dr. Cox and Turk and sometimes even J.D. and Elliott are still there, this show isn't Scrubs.

Zach Braff is not a cast member anymore, just a guest star, and when he's not there, the show just feels different. Scrubs was not just about the hospital and the staff and patients in it - it was about being inside J.D.'s head, and watching him make mistakes, and watching him grow up.

Now, Cox and Turk are exactly the same, and to be honest, if it was just them with the occasional J.D. and Elliott, I think I'd still watch, because the actors know their characters inside and out by now, and those two are still the same and I still love them.

In the pilot episode, I thought Drew and Denise seemed the most promising - Denise, who was also left over from last year, still kinda works, though her attitude seemed funnier as a student than as a teacher, and I really, really liked Drew as the reluctant teacher's pet of Cox and object of jealousy for J.D. Now, only a few episodes into the season, Cox, Denise, and Drew have all become the same character - they have no patience for ineptitude, kissing ass or stupidity and they can cut you down in an instance with their witty, scathing retorts. It's not funny. It's just lazy writing.

Cole (who is played by Dave Franco, who I didn't know was the brother of James Franco, but I should've by their shared inability to open their eyes wider than slits) is an idiot and even with his father's pull at the med school it's impossible to understand how he even got into med school. At least we know The Todd is a skilled surgeon despite his frat boy behavior.

And Lucy...ah Lucy, the new J.D. She's supposed to be cute and quirky and endearing and eager and I don't know if its the actress or the writing but it just falls completely flat. She's J.D. 2.0, down to the voice-overs and fantasies, and it doesn't work...I think it worked for J.D. to be honest, because the character was a guy.

It also worked because the writers gave J.D. meaningful and well-written storylines about patients we came to care about, coworkers we came to care about, and well-rounded friends we cared about. There were real moments of conflict and emotion. The storylines this season are flat and trite and worst of all, boring. I feel like a show that spent seven years evolving and weaving an intricate world full of intricate stories has devolved into an 80s sitcom.

The things is, I just realized, though, too, is that I do find myself still laughing at the show on occasion - at Cox. Or Elliott. Or Turk and J.D. and their antics. It's like the writers still know and love those characters. It's like the writers can't end stand the new class...

And sadly, the worst part, I think, is that Scrubs is dragging down one of the *best* sitcoms on TV right now, Better Off Ted. BOT is paired with a show I can't stand to watch anymore (even though I still do...bad habits die hard) on Tuesdays when that zany, quirky, witty show could be paired with three other ABC zany, quirky, and witty shows on Wednesdays...and there's even a spot for it in the lineup! It's infuriating. And sad.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Save Better Off Ted Petition

Save Better Off Ted Petition

This is a show that deserves to be saved. So if you watch and like the show, sign the petition!

And if you don't watch the show, it's available online at Hulu and Oh, and it comes on tonight! But go watch it now!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Better Off Ted is not better off dead

It's probably too late seeing as ABC is already burning off episodes of this show two at a time but if you're not watching Better Off Ted, start! Now! ABC took a chance (good for them - about frickin' time they took a chance on something!) by bringing this clever, hilarious show for a second season, but as with most of the well-written, well-acted quality shows out there, nobody's watching! Better Off Ted is, I dare say, a better workplace comedy than The Office, exploiting the absurdity in working for a giant mega-corporation in an even funnier manner than 30 Rock (blasphemy, I know, but I'll admit it - I don't think I love 30 Rock as much as all the critics and awards shows seem to...) But I do love Better Off Ted. Jay Harrington's straight man Ted has become my new television boyfriend and Lem and Phil, the nerdy scientist duo, may be my favorite socially awkward but lovable tv 'couples.' If you like any of the aforementioned shows or even Arrested Development (another absurdist, zany comedy - I miss you so!), check out Better Off Ted before it's dead.

Go now...go!