Wednesday, October 15, 2008

TV Reviews for the Viewing Week of Oct. 5, 2008 Pt. 2

Ah, the race card. Always good for making people feel uncomfortable, and that’s where the funny is in this show. And with a good cast, telegraphing where you’re going in a show can be funny. Take for example what Christine’s brother and ex-husband did. They spelled out a handful of male stereotypes, say how silly they are, then fall into all of them.

A bisected transgendered person. They could have played with that a bit more, I think. That would have made positive identification tricky, but I guess they had to move the plot along. I’m enjoying how they’re doing interrogations, with one person observing behind the glass and making suggestions via a hidden earpiece.

This is the first chance this season I’ve had to watch this show. I’m indifferent about Jay Mohr. He can be really funny at times, but he can also be really annoying. He was okay in this. I like his ex-wife. I know I’ve seen her before, and I know she was in Steven Weber’s short-lived sitcom, but I can’t remember what I’ve seen her in recently. I don’t like Ed Bagley, Jr. The only time I’ve found him tolerable is in Arrested Development.

Is Luke Perry making a comeback? First a guest starring role on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, now on Criminal Minds. He must be getting all nostalgic since there’s a new 90210 on. And hey, it’s Brian Doyle Murray, Bill’s less-famous and less-talented brother. And the guy who played Tripp on Star Trek: Enterprise. With as many people that are in an episode like this (Waco-esque cult stand-off with Reid and Prentiss trapped on the wrong side), I guess it helps to have some recognizable faces in the mix, if only to separate out the important players from the extras. And I just realized that’s not Brian Doyle Murray, but the other brother who is even LESS famous and talented. But we’ve also got the helicopter pilot from the last season of Lost, whose name escapes me at the moment. It was a good episode overall, but Joe Montegna was overacting a bit.

I’ve got a buddy who didn’t think Clay was long for this world. I don’t know. I can see a couple of different scenarios playing out if he or Jacks is killed, both of them involving Peggy Bundy.

Nick George’s wife is hot. Her hair is way too short, but she’s still hot. Is the common man supposed to be sympathetic to anything that happens to the Darlings? With their wealth, their power, their status, it is impossible to relate to them. We could at first with Nick, but he’s quickly falling into the Darlings’ web.

With so much time being spent looking for Lex, I hope he’s found. This show isn’t the same without him. I wonder if this whole season is going to be a geek fest for the comic book fans. We had the Justice League earlier, there are rumors of Doomsday, and here we’ve got Maxima. Thinking back, I can understand why the producers/creators/writers waited so long into the show’s life to make the show more comic booky. It seems pretty damn ridiculous when you think about it. It’s easier to accept the kryptonite monster of the week than a quickly explained alien hottie who is looking to mate with a Kryptonian. I guess some things are really are meant for one medium and not another.

Ah, the things we can learn about ourselves by watching white trash make up for past sins. Thanks to a guest spot by David Arquette, we learn that sometimes a lie is a good thing. He was great as an "amateur" stunt man who ends up losing his long-term memory due to too many blows to the head. Ten years back Earl kept convincing him to do more and more dangerous stunts just so he could sleep with his wife. The play on Groundhog Day was creative, as was Earl’s decision with his list.

Okay, 2 ½ Men was an unintentional casualty. I thought Boston Legal would be the first I would axe, but I was wrong. This was awful. Molly Shannon was okay, and her character’s fiancé was good, but Selma Blair’s character and her husband were painful to watch. I don’t think I laughed once. I might have cracked a smile, but there was no laughing.

"Long pig?"
"He means human flesh."
"And that is my word of the day."
What great dialogue on this show. And I think we ARE looking at an eventual battle between Sam and Dean. And if there has to be a twist, it’s that Dean isn’t actually taking advice from an angel, just another demon who wants Sam to stop sending demons back to hell. So Sam makes a massive life choice at the end

"It’s not the poop. It’s the mystery behind the poop."
"Name’s Artemis. I have a bleached asshole."
This show is like a live action South Park if all the kids were grown up. This episode was about poop. Even the Sex and the City subplot ended up being about poop. How awesome is that?

The name alone grabbed me on this one. This episode was okay. A guy ends up getting "pregnant" after undergoing a test for a new pill. The labor ends up being pretty funny, as is the "birth."

Wow, yet another cop drama. This one’s got a decent twist, though. It looks like our lead was hit by a car in the present and is in a coma. But for some reason his mind or whatever is stuck in 1973. It feels a lot like the show NBC had last season where the reporter in San Francisco kept jumping into the past, but so far with this show our boy doesn’t hop back and forth. It looks like he’s probably in the past until he comes out of the coma. Michael Imperioli does nothing for me, but Harvey Keitel is awesome. He’s a no nonsense cop who can’t be troubled to play by the book. Oh what shenanigans we’ll have when he does something that rules-and-regulations cop from the present doesn’t agree with. Fun times!

I wonder why NBC is doing two episodes a week. Are they planning on pulling it earlier than at the end of the regular season to make way for something else? I hope the show gets a full season. It’s pretty much a by-the-book cop show, but it’s got good acting and a good conspiracy in the background. And each episode our hero detective gets a little closer to finding out who set him up. In this episode he learns what cops were working with his partner’s father, who seems to be deeply involved in the conspiracy.

It’s a decent show, but I’m just not feeling it. I’m going to give it another episode or two, then I’ll probably drop it. I like the new guy, the forensic guy who looks like James Marsters, and the caveman guy. The blond is extremely hot, but I don’t much care for her acting or the woman who plays her mother, the woman from Stargate: SG1. The stories are mildly intriguing, but only mildly. Of course, the first season of Buffy wasn’t all that great either.

I’ve officially stopped watching Miami and New York regularly. They’ll be available to me on OnDemand, but I just don’t have the time or inclination to watch them on a regular basis. But I can’t give up the original. Especially with Lawrence Fishburne joining the cast. I’ll miss William Peterson when he’s gone, because he made the show what it is, but I’m interested in seeing what Morpheus will bring to the table. Anyways, about the season premiere. Warrick was never one of my favorite characters, but I always thought Dourdan played him well. He died well in this episode, and the speech he gave about Grissom being like a father to him was perfect. I’m a little surprised that the writers didn’t try to drag out the premiere to at least two episodes, but I thought it was wrapped up nicely in just one. Goodbye Warrick Brown, you’ll be missed.


christy p said...

fyi, Life on Mars is a remake of a BBC show. the original is far superior and so far the US remake is pretty much doing a by the book remake. it's pretty uncanny and disconcerting, actually. the pre-aired pilot was far worse though. they pretty much recast everyone except Jason O'Mara. if i could figure out why my dvd burner thinks one episode is over 6GBs, i would burn you a copy of it.

do you watch Doctor Who?

Rob Rosenblatt said...

I knew it was a remake, but I've never seen the original. I hadn't even heard of it until I did a little bit of research on the US show to see if I'd be interested in it. Besides The Office, do you know of any US remakes of foreign shows that have been successful? Coupling wasn't, and after viewing the pilot, I doubt Kath & Kim will be. What else have we tried to steal?

I've never seen Dr. Who. It's been around in some form or another since, what, the '60s? I think I've been put off by all of the history that's built up. I've heard nothing but good things about it, though. Wasn't James Marsters in a few episode in the last year or so, playing a gay pirate or something? Or am I thinking of something else?

christy p said...

i think The Office is the extreme exception to the rule and i think it has a lot to do with the fact that after the first season, the two shows just aren't comparable. it found its own voice.

oh geez, Rob! if i'd known you hadn't watched Doctor Who i would have been pimping it to you at every opportunity! i haven't attempted to watch any of the old series. i started with the revamp in 2005 with Christopher Eccleston. i do actually have those dvds, but they are *ahemmed* because the dvds are incredibly expensive and i'm waiting for them to drop dramatically.

Marsters was in the Who spin-off, Torchwood. it's a hit or miss show. sometimes it's fabulous and other times it's atrocious.

Rob Rosenblatt said...

I knew about Eccleston only after he appeared on Heroes. I read a weekly comic book gossip column (have I sunk to new lows of geekery?), and the guy who writes it is British and lives in England. He has quite a bit of Who information, the most notable that caught my eye being Neil Gaiman, a legendary comic book writer (Sandman, Stardust (now a movie), Coraline (soon to be a movie)) and novelist (American Gods, Anansi Boys), will be writing some episodes in 2010. Maybe I should check it out. Since the wife is borrowing some books from you, maybe I should borrow the DVDs. I'm sure we could find something to offer up in trade. Need a kid? We could probably spare one.

Kate said...

Doctor Who...classic. They play the current ones on the PBS affiliate out here, and boy they suck you in.

Hasn't it been running in Britain for something like 50 years?

Rob Rosenblatt said...

From wikipedia: The programme is listed in Guinness World Records as the longest-running science fiction television show in the world. The programme originally ran from 1963 to 1989.

christy p said...

okay...i was going to send the dvds with Ang when she came to get the book, but i can't seem to find the first five episodes of the first season. so i'm going to have to get back to you. grr!

as for a kid trade, i think i'll have to pass. they're adorable and all, but yeah...

Thea said...

"Name’s Artemis. I have a bleached asshole."

Oh, Sunny. How I love thee. This is the most wonderful, juvenile, punile show ever. And the poop episode admittedly was one of the weakest I've seen--have you watched the back seasons yet?

And, I concur with what Kate and everyone has said here--Doctor Who = win. I'm also a fan of the books too! Highly recommended.

OH, and I didn't know that Gaiman was doing a stint for the show! *head explodes* Wow.

Rob Rosenblatt said...

I thought it was great for the guys to go through all that shit (pun very much intended) only to have DeVito's character laughingly fess up to it in the end.

So it looks like I need to catch up on some Dr. Who, some original Life on Mars, and some Burn Notice. Is there some way I can get paid to watch TV and have that be my full-time job?