This is getting old and I know it. It’s time once more to hang the “Out to Lunch” sign … I’ve been away since … what? July? Damn. That’s just pathetic.
Here’s the deal, folks. Not that anyone is around to read this shit, but who knows? Maybe someone stumbles across this weird corner of the blogosphere and is moderately curious about these things …
I’m still around. I’m still watching TV. I’m still overwhelmed with opinions that no one particularly wants to here. But I’m going to get pack to posting it all here. I’m just going to apply a new methodology. There has to be a better way and I may have figured something out.
Enough for now … more to come … soon.
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So … hot enough for ya? Depending on your zip code, the answer to that question is a resounding “yes”! Stay tuned … it’s just going to get hotter.
But enough about the weather. Let’s talk the only hotness that counts, namely the good looking lads and lasses that are currently appearing on your television screen. Because, honestly, if you have any sense at all, you’re staying inside where the heat won’t give you a fucking stroke.
We’ll start with SYTYCD (aka “So You Think You Can Dance?”). Last week we met the top 20: 10 guys, 10 gals. First the guys … uh … probably a good looking bunch. Don’t care, couldn’t say. But as for the gals, that’s another story. I’m not going to spend a lot of time on details here either, but note for the record that one of those gals is an actual pole dancer. She also dances for Cirque de Soliel … you know the weird circus high wire act with all the weird bendy and sometimes naked stuff. Then there is the belly dancer with the absolutely stunning eyes. I’m not kidding … she has amazing eyes! The rest of her is pretty nice too. But the cream of the crop is a pair of jaw-dropping cute blonde BFFs from Utah. I have to stab myself in the eye each Wednesday to remind myself these girls are only 18 … only metaphorically of course. If my wife is going to make me watch this shit, I reserve the right to admire the scenery.
But enough of the pretty dancing girls. Oh … and guys. Right. Whatever.
If you’re looking for good looking television, you must be watching the USA Network. I don’t think you can get a show on that network unless the leads are smoking hot. Case in point, the dynamic duo of Covert Affairs and White Collar. Both shows air on Tuesday night and both feature insanely good looking leads (and a pretty darn cute supporting cast as well).
Matt Bomer plays Neal Caffrey–a good looking (okay, I’ll admit it, extremely good looking) con-artist–on White Collar. He dresses sharply and has an over-abundance of both style and attitude. And the boy is a true charmer, an essential job skill if you want to be a con-man I’m guessing. He spends most of his time catching bad-guys for the FBI and doing his level best to stay on the right side of the law himself. White Collar is a pretty good show and one you can jump into without feeling like you’re missing a whole lot. If you get the chance, however, I do recommend cozying up with Neal and the previous seasons of White Collar now showing on Netflix.
Which brings us to Covert Affairs. Y’all remember Coyote Ugly, a modestly successful movie from the 90′s about hot young women dancing on the bar in a bar called, you guessed it, Coyote Ugly? No matter if you don’t recall the movie. All you need to know is that it starred Piper Perabo. She was nice to look at back then and, honestly, she is even nicer to look at now in her role as Annie Walker in Current Affairs. Back then, she was cute. Now …
Annie is a novice CIA agent with a knack for finding trouble. Well, is there any other kind of CIA agent on television? She is equal parts sweet and spicy. But Annie’s most endearing quality is that she often gets in over her head only to win the day on sheer guts and gumption. That’s right … I said gumption. She’s a lot like True Blood’s Sookie Stackhouse … without being naked all the time and no fairy powers. And no accent.
But I’ll get to Sookie and True Blood later. I don’t want to leave anyone with the impression here that I only watch television for the hot chicks. In fact, I only rarely even use the term “hot chicks”. But I do watch television for pleasure and part of that includes an attractive cast of characters. There’s a reason after all networks almost always build shows around good looking leads. I would simply like to acknowledge their efforts where appropriate.
And, honestly, the only reason to watch shit like SYTYCD is because of the smoking out dancers. Okay … some of the dancing is pretty cool too, but who would seriously give a damn if those dances were being performed by short fat guys and girls with no cleavage?
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Welcome back to Falling Skies!
Creepy damn aliens (at least two varieties), giant spacecraft and wicked weapons, gritty bad-ass rebellious humans, and absolutely no socio-political commentary to be found anywhere!
Go ahead, bicker among yourselves. Excessive paranoia and a healthy dose of self-doubt? No problem. Threaten each other with violence … everybody is equally well armed (all praise the NRA!).
Just remember which way to point those guns with the aliens rain hell down on your heads and I’ll go to bed happy.
It’s clear from the start that our alien invaders in Falling Skies have the firepower to lay waste to the entire planet. Therefor, the big mystery here, is why they have yet to do so. Theories range from classic Twilight Zone (To Serve Man) to Invasion of the Body Snatchers. I favor the latter, or something like it, meaning these aliens need our bits for some purpose other than stocking the larder. Regardless, this is the central mystery that provides the backdrop to Falling Skies … not that I care. I’m from the XBox generation, afterall. Just nuke some more aliens, dammit!
Alien death is often slowed up by interpersonal conflict between the principals, including Noah Wylie and his family of emo-boys, but I supposeTNT doesn’t have the budget for wall-to-wall alien-busting effects. I imagine, should I put my mind to it and use some of those brain-cells not yet burned out by various video games, I could probably find some kind of allegorical parallels to the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan, but I just as soon not. I can’t even spell Afghanistan without help.
The aliens are bug-eyed bastards that deserve to die. That’s all I need. As long as Noah and the boys can set aside the pseudo-drama long enough to take care of bidness, count me in.
The aliens are coming, boys! Lock and load!
Wait … don’t shoot! That’s just Larry Hagman …
What am I saying? Fire at will!!
Falling Skies airs Sundays on TNT at 9/8 Central.
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I’ll admit it. I should get therapy. Sooner than later. Why?
Let’s start with this … I watch way too much television AND I write a blog no one reads on the topic. That’s just nuts. I need help.
What I don’t need is couples therapy. Any time I have a disagreement with my DVR, I always win. No therapy needed there.
But that is the long way around to a quick “thumbs up” for USA’s new buddy copshow, Common Law. The basic premise here is to take the old standby conceit of two cops who don’t get along and making them partners. Now mix in couples therapy to help our cop-buds work our their issues. Hey, while we’re at it, let’s turn the therapy sessions into group therapy! Yeah! That’s gonna be tons of funny!
Actually, it kind of is.
The only thing remotely original in this mix is that someone had the idea to combine all of these ideas into one mix at all. Buddy cops that don’t get along. Buddy cops that are clearly opposites. Couples therapy for a little bromantic flavor. One cop is a street smart, good lookin’, smooth talking black guy and the other, naturally, needs to be white, uptight, and dresses just right. But also clearly good looking. I could run down a list for you of all the movies and/or television shows with exactly those ingredients in various proportions–from Lethal Weapon to Starsky and Hutch–but there isn’t much point. You’ve seen them all and you know the cliches.
The thing is, it does kind of work. You learn to enjoy these guys and the relationship they have, dysfunctional as it may appear to be. Of course the relationship is hardly dysfunctional at all in that these two always get the bad guy in the end. It is the USA Network after all.
Watch it. Enjoy it. Laugh a little either at the antics on your screen or at the fact you’re perfectly willing to buy the bit in the first place. Either way, it might just be the sort of therapy you need.
Common Law airs Friday Nights on USA Network at 10/9 Central (which somehow translates to 11p Mountain time).
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Summer television, at least thus far, has presented a fairly bleak even nauseating landscape. Thank you TNT for giving us a bit of drama and a lot of fun on Tuesday nights. Beginning this week, we get the return of both Rizzoli & Isles and Franklin & Bash. While neither show is exactly epic television, both are eminently watchable. Both series depend entirely on the charm of their leads and the charisma between the title characters. The storylines and plots are routine and completely by the book. Nothing here to really challenge our minds or emotions, at least not usually.
R&I (my abbreviation but feel free to use it) is returning after the usual season ending cliffhanger. That usually means one or the other of our leading ladies has been shot and her life hangs in the balance. This season is different in that the shootee is neither ‘R’ nor ‘I’ (nor any other main character) but Isles’ gansta daddy. So it’s the gal-pal friendship between the leading ladies which is knocking on death’s door … only everyone knows it really isn’t. Just like you can’t kill of either the ‘R’ or the ‘I’ in the title, it would also be disaster to bump off the ‘&’ part. In other words, the ladies will bounce back by episode two or three, but certainly no later. The secret of this show isn’t the pot-boiler plots or mind-bending mysteries … it’s all about the charisma. And that charisma is alive and kicking.
The success of Franklin & Bash also hangs on the charisma of the leads. There’s no real cliffhanger to resolve this season–other than the show getting renewed in the first place after a moderately successful freshman run. The cases they work on are inconsequential, little more than setting up our frat-boy lawyers to bend the rules, act out in court, and work their magic. Hey, someone has to do it now that James Spader and William Shatner have closed up shop over at Boston Legal. The show has a habit of slipping appealing guest-stars into those cases, as either lawyers or clients. In the first three episodes this season we get Kevin Neelan, Seth Green, and Cybil Shepherd.
Lawyer shows and cop shows come and go almost entirely at random. It is equally random any time one of them sticks. Happily, two good ones have managed to stick to Tuesday nights.
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Let’s make this short and to the point: Rookie Blue is a better show than it should be. That’s seldom the case for network television; usually shows are no where near as good as they could be. Rookie Blue is exactly the opposite of that. At its heart, this is a cop show with far too many pretty people. It’s nowhere near as good, for example, as Southland which was discarded by NBC (because they already had far too many good shows?) after just one season.
But I’m okay with pretty people, particularly if one of them happens to be Missy Peregrym. And she may not even be the prettiest cop on the beat. Okay, actually she is. But the girl seems able to act and the rest of the ensemble cast hold up well enough. Do I see an Emmy in the future? Hell no. But William Shatner’s guest turn as a grandfather obsessed with the disappearance of his granddaughter in the season premiere should get some consideration. It won’t, but it should.
The plot-lines are overrun with unlikely coincidences and unbelievable twists, but so what? You ever watch Grey’s Anatomy or House or just about any other television drama? That’s the way these shows work. We’re television junkies, people. We buy anything. Hunky ex-boyfriend/fiance returns from the military and ends up working as a cop in your same precinct? Sure. Why the hell not. You catch a ride with your on-again/currently off-again police officer boyfriend and crash into a van that happens to have a kidnap victim hiding in the back? Sure … go with that.
Rookie Blue isn’t about being believable. If we want that, we watch the far better Southland. I told you already … it’s about pretty cops doing cool things and, whenever possible, hooking up. Welcome back you guys!
Rookie Blue airs Thursdays on ABC at 10/9c.
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Dancing with the Stars … done.
American Idol … over.
The Voice … silence, merciful silence.
Now maybe we can get back to watching good television again. Here’s a hint, people: any show that needs a full two hours (or more) to reveal two seconds of results is wasting your time. Sure, television is supposed to waste a couple hours (or more) of any given day–it isn’t intended to be a productive use of our time. However, there is a point where we simply must draw a line. There’s wasting time, but then there’s someone else (network TV) totally wasting our time in a way that takes undue advantage of our gullibility, laziness, or full-on lack of functioning brain cells.
Case in point: the last two hours of American Idol … that was just brutal. Why do we do that to ourselves?
Aw hell. I just made the mistake of checking out the television schedule for the rest of the week.
Maybe there is no escape.
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I’m happy to report, and more than a little surprised to learn, that Nikita is still alive and kicking … kicking ass that is. The finale aired this passed Friday and Nikita (Maggie Q) survived her date with Division. While that was no small feat, it was only marginally more impressive than the fact that Nikita also beat the odds and will return next year to the CW line-up.
On a network over-run with teenage angst (but surprisingly little acne), Nikita skews a bit older than the standard CW fair (as in Gossip Girl, 90120, and even Supernatural). Based upon the remarkably conclusive finale, I suspect the show runners for Nikita also feared their time was about up. Watching last night’s episode, I could almost pinpoint the exact point where the script made a nice little jump to allow for the possibility that the show might continue. It’s the moment when a now major character steps off the elevator … in case you want to take a look for yourself. There is an equally pivotal moment when another member of the cast could easily have easily been killed instead of popping up alive and well before the end credits roll.
All’s well that ends well, right? Especially if you also survive the up-fronts.
This was a very satisfying season for this show. In fact, I liked this finale much more than the latest season-ender for Supernatural (which follows Nikita on Friday nights). I enjoy Supernatural and, honestly, will put more effort into watching it than I will Nikita. But the last few seasons, the writers appear to be in a disappointing rut. It goes like this: Paint the Winchester boys into an impossible corner, have them barely survive–but at what cost?–then leave everyone with the clear impression that all that hard work and sacrifice probably only made everything worse. Stay tuned for next season when the shit really hits the fan!
And they fucked up the Impala … again.
Both shows had a very solid run this season, better than I expected. But of the two, Nikita left me filling more satisfied. Both shows have been renewed for next season, with the Winchesters moving to Wednesday night to hang out with Oliver Queen (aka Green Arrow) and Nikita shifting to a later time on Friday’s. Initially, Nikita will get the dubious honor of following America’s Next Top Model but eventually our super-spy gets teamed up with something a little meatier as Cult is slotted as a mid-season replacement.
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