Thursday, December 31, 2009

10 TV Wishes for 2010.

A friend, hearing my cry for something new to watch in the wasteland of reruns, recommended I try Damages. I'd always heard good things about it, but for some reason, just never gave it a shot. So I'm downloading the first two episodes now.

In the meantime, since today is the last day of 2009, I'm going to share my TV wishes for 2010.

1) Chuck gains a bigger audience. This will not happen. Look, people know it exists, they just choose not to watch. Sort of like with Friday Night Lights.

2) Ugly Betty gains a foothold on Wednesdays at 10PM. This probably will not happen either. I don't think all the fans who left just because the show moved to Fridays will suddenly come back. I know if I give up on a show, I give up for good.

3) The return of Wentworth Miller. I gave up on Prison Break after season 2, yes. But that wasn't me taking Wentworth for granted. That was me refusing to watch a show as it got more and more absurd.

4) A TV show starring a non-white person/family. I know what you're thinking. And no, The Cleveland Show does not count. It's a CARTOON.

5) Speaking of diversity, I would like for Tina C. to sing another solo on Glee. I didn't love her attempt at Tonight from West Side Story, but her rendition of True Colors is beautiful (like a rainbow). It's uplifting, it's moving, it's well done. I may or may not have shed a tear when it first came up on my Pandora.

6) The cancellation of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. This will not happen, because The Bachelor is a very popular franchise. Even though it is, in fact, a cancerous mole on the face of television.

7) No more TV remakes of shows from before I was born. Sadly, the three major networks are charging ahead with The Rockford Files (NBC), Charlie's Angels (ABC) and Hawaii Five-O (CBS). I'm putting myself to sleep just typing those titles.

8) More likeable/memorable contestants on The Amazing Race and Survivor. I hated this season's final four teams on TAR and I didn't know anyone's name except Evil Russell's and Shambo's on Survivor: Samoa. This wish may actually come true: Big Brother's Jeff & Jordan are rumored to be in the next TAR, and the next Survivor is an all-star edition and Evil Russell's in it. Let's hope he takes home the money this time around.

9) No more lawyer/doctor dramas. Unfortunately, ABC has The Deep End (lawyer) coming up, and CBS has Miami Trauma (doctor). I'm not watching these. I'm guessing you won't either.

10) More crazy, jaw-dropping moments like the lawn mower incident on Mad Men and Rita in the bathtub on Dexter and the entire Wentworth Miller episode of Law & Order: SVU. I can't tell you what a pleasure it is to watch a show and suddenly go HOLY CRAP DID THAT JUST HAPPEN???

And that's a wrap! What are your TV wishes for 2010?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Holidays '09: Can We Make Reruns Illegal?

Every show's on hiatus.

Ergo, I've been reading a lot and watching movies the last few days. I'm on my third memoir and 2nd installation of Evil Dead (foisted upon me by the fiance). Let me tell you, you know you've hit rock bottom when the only form of entertainment around are poorly done zombie movies starring a guy who looks like a '70s version of Brody Jenner from The Hills.

You know what, TV networks? I'm so over this holiday hiatus thing. I'm so over everything going on break for three weeks. I'm so over considering watching True Life: I'm Happy To Be Fat on because I'm dying for something, ANYTHING, to watch.

TV networks, you're doing yourself a disservice with these extended breaks. I've completely forgotten what happened in the last episode of FlashForward. I can't even remember the last time Eddie Cibrian took off his shirt on CSI: Miami. And who got fired on Grey's Anatomy again?

Not that I'd actually go back and rewatch any of these episodes to find out. And I think other viewers would agree: No more reruns! Let's get some original programming on right now. Not January 10 (Chuck), not February 14 (The Amazing Race), not friggin APRIL 13 (sob), but RIGHT NOW.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Doctor Who: I Need a Translator for English.

Yesterday was Christmas, and the fiance and I watched two things: The Proposal (my pick, and it was like watching a 2009 version of While You Were Sleeping) and the latest episode of Doctor Who (his pick).

Doctor Who, for those not in the know, is a British show about a guy who gets in his blue police booth and travels through time. He goes to the past and the future. I don't really know what the purpose of his travels is, since according to my fiance, who has seen every episode, the Doctor is not allowed to interfere with history (or the future, for that matter).

Basically, here is what happens in a typical episode: Something starts to happen somewhere in time. The Doctor shows up. Interacts with the locals. Figures out where he is in time and realizes something terrible's about to happen. Tells the locals, Sorry, you're screwed. Locals say, But you've got to help us. Doctor says, Nope, can't do it. Hasta luego.

And that's the episode.

As you can tell, I'm not too fond of this show. But not because of the pointless premise. Not because of David Tennant's annoying eyebrows. No, I don't like this show for one simple reason: I cannot understand what these people are saying.

I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, They speak English, you speak English. What's not to understand?

Well, for me, listening to a British accent, I understand MOST of what is said, but with the accent, plus all the British turns-of-phrase and idioms, I still miss about 20%. Imagine, if you will, every fifth word in the Pledge of Allegiance replaced: I pledge allegiance to Poconos flag of the United coffee of America. And to boomerang republic for which it consideration one nation under God, macaroni, with libery and justice potatoes all.

In other words, watching an episode of Doctor Who is like going into battle with your gun only 80% loaded. Your tank just 80% filled. Your brain just 80% conscious.

Sorry, Brits. But I'll be sticking to American TV. Unless I can get some subtitles.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Dear Ugly Betty: You're Still the One. Love, Linda's TV.

I've always loved Ugly Betty.

There are naysayers out there who say this show is done. Who point to this season or that season and say, That's when the show went off course. They complain Betty has had her braces way too long, Betty's not advancing fast enough in her career, Betty should dress better now that she's been working at Mode for two years, etc, etc.

I would like to tell these people to shove it.

For me, Ugly Betty has always been consistent. Consistently good. It's one of the few shows on television (the other ones being Glee and Modern Family) where I enforce the Rule for my fiance:

"Pause it if you want to say something."

That's because almost every single line on this show is witty, zingy, or both. I'll give you an example of what Wilhelmina said in a recent episode, about an ugly bathing suit:

"And this swimsuit doesn't know what it wants to be. It's the Anne Heche of swimwear."

This weekend, I finally started watching the current season. What a pleasure it was to sink back into the world of Ugly Betty, with the funky modern offices of Mode and Betty's pattern-clashing outfits and the absurd yet plausible storylines. What a pleasure it was to see Amanda grow a heart and still utter lines like this: "Hold up, skinny b*tches! And Betty." What a pleasure it was to see Adam Rodriguez show up at Hilda's house to fix her heater and have to take off his shirt. Wait, did I say that out loud?

My only objection to the show is that it makes me cry too dang much. Example: when that crazy cult lady (played by Jamie-Lynn Sigler of The Sopranos) told Daniel to talk to Molly. Molly died suddenly in last season's finale, right after she and Daniel got married. So this season, Daniel attends grief counseling, where he meets said crazy cult lady, who encourages him to look up at the night sky and say what he wants to say to Molly.


Then there was the episode where Hilda's son Justin is crowned Homecoming Queen. Hilda herself was supposed to be queen in high school, but she couldn't accept her crown because she was pregnant with Justin at the time. Anyway, Justin gets up on the stage and gives a speech about how his mom is the one who deserves the crown. He invites her up to the stage and puts the tiara on her head and gives her the flowers.

Got Kleenex?

I have one more episode of Ugly Betty before I officially run out of things to watch until January. That's a scary prospect. I still haven't come to terms with it. I guess this is the time to start planning my wedding...

Monday, December 21, 2009

What's Airing After The Super Bowl?

What show will run after the Super Bowl?

That's the question everyone in the broadcast industry wants to know every year. The Super Bowl is the biggest event on television, with close to 100 million viewers last year. It is a HUGE boost for whatever show runs right after it. Last year, the big game ran on NBC, and the network decided to run The Office afterwards. Personally, I think it was a mistake, because The Office was in its 5th season at the time. People knew it existed. NBC should've promoted one of its newer, more promising shows. Not that they had any, but you get my drift.

This year, CBS has the Super Bowl. And guess what? It is making a SMART move by airing its brand-new reality series, Undercover Boss, after the game.

Why is this a smart move? Aside from the fact that this show could use the exposure, Undercover Boss is just plain terrific. I watched a preview of it at the CBS upfront, and by the end, I, along with most of the female members of the audience, were bawling. The show is about CEOs and other higher-ups at different companies working anonymously at entry-level positions and seeing what life outside the corner office is REALLY about. It sounds hokey, and believe me, I was pretty dang skeptical when I first heard the concept. But I'm telling you, you have to watch this show. And I'm betting you will, if you watch the Super Bowl.

Some speculated (before the announcement) that CBS might air The Big Bang Theory after the game. While that's an aiiight idea, Big Bang is killing it in the ratings. It doesn't need any help.

What's interesting to me is CBS is using the game to promote a reality show. In past years, the game has been used to boost Criminal Minds, Grey's Anatomy and The Office--all of which are scripted. My guess is, CBS knows it has a gem on its hands, and dang it if they're not going to tell the world all about it--on February 7, 2010.

Survivor: Samoa: Who Saw That Coming?

I was so disappointed by last night's Survivor: Samoa outcome. And not just because Russell burned yet another perfectly good sock.

No, I'm disappointed because Natalie, of all people, took home the $1 million.

I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, Natalie who?

That's right, the teeny blonde from Arkansas, whose name I didn't learn until last night, became the Sole Survivor. Don't ask me how that happened.

Actually, I was sort of rooting for her--at first. I just felt sorry for her being a tiny little thing amongst the three remaining men. Also, Natalie was not annoying--and by "not being annoying" I mean "entirely forgettable." So going into the jury Q&A, I was on Team Natalie. Especially with cocky Russell shooting his mouth off about how awesome he is and how he played everybody (true enough, but I didn't like hearing about it all night).

Then Russell gave his opening speech in front of the jury. He outlined everything he'd done this game, including manipulating every single person in the jury and finding hidden immunity idols without any clues. It was maybe a three-minute speech at most, but by the end of it, I was sold. "Russell," I thought, "it's yours. They'd be crazy not to give it to you."

Well, they were crazy.

After Eric's impassioned speech at the end, something about how Mick and Russell lied a lot while Natalie played an upstanding game and that that, he would give his vote to Natalie, it seemed a lot of the jury changed their mind. In the end, Russell got just two votes while Natalie got the rest of the votes (at least, the ones that were called).

Poor Russell! He played arguably the best game of Survivor ever, and he lost to a girl who didn't do anything the whole game except kill a rat, like, fifteen episodes ago. Russell deserved the win. America agreed--they voted him as player of the game.

I think Natalie will go down as the least-deserving Survivor winner in history. And I seriously, seriously doubt she will be asked to appear in the upcoming Survivor All Stars (aka Heroes vs. Villains). CBS, you'd better bring Evil Russell back for that one.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Big Love: Big Skimpin'.

The upcoming 4th season of Big Love, which premieres January 10 on HBO, will only have nine episodes.

Nine episodes!

That's one fewer episode than season 3, and THREE fewer than season 2. At this point, I'm expecting Big Love's final season to just be one long two-hour episode. The first fifteen minutes will be the premiere, the next hour and a half will be the midseason lull, and the final fifteen minutes will blow us all away with how great it is. Then the episode will go on a nine-month hiatus before returning to run the credits.

I wouldn't be complaining this much if I didn't love this show. Bill. Margene. Barb. Nicki. Bill's crazy mother. Roman Grant. Rhonda. I actually can't remember if Roman and Rhonda are still alive. It's been ages--I mean, the last episode of Big Love I saw was back in March. All I remember from last season is Sarah got pregnant by that hipster-looking dude and confessed her big secret to her brother and they ended that episode so perfectly with Sarah and her brother sitting on a hill overlooking a lake and Alphaville's "Forever Young" leading us to the credits. It was such a lovely way to end the episode. That's what Big Love and Mad Men do well--they pick great songs to lead to the credits.

Where was I going with this post? Oh, yes. Big Love's seasons are WAY TOO SHORT. I don't know if it's a budget issue, being on pay cable, or if Big Love really does need only nine or ten episodes to tell the whole story arc. I mean, even a show like Dexter, which has only a handful of main characters, pushes itself to do a dozen episodes. Big Love is about four main relationships--the one Bill has with each of his three wives, and the one the wives have with each other. Then you have all the stuff with Roman Grant and Juniper Creek and the casino and oh yeah, keeping the neighbors from finding out that they are secretly polygamous.

I think you could tell make a bazillion episodes about one month in their lives alone. But that's just me.

If only my beloved shows could find a happy medium between too few episodes and too many (I'm looking at you, Survivor: Samoa!).

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Dexter Finale: WHAAAAA?????

I watched the Dexter finale last night.

I still haven't recovered.

Normally with season finales, you're inclined to believe it'll be the most exciting episode of the season, with cliffhangers up the wazoo. With the exception of last season's Private Practice, and arguably Mad Men, finales generally do not live up to our expectations. The episodes are just aiiight. Somebody gets pregnant, somebody gets married, somebody declares their feelings for someone else. Finales have become so predictable, almost nobody needs to watch them live anymore. They tape them, and two weeks later, if they remember, and they're bored, they might watch them. And then forget about them.

That ain't happening with Dexter.

The last few episodes had been so stellar, so gripping, I thought there was no possible way the finale could be better. Just as good, maybe, but not better. Still, I went the whole day praying I wouldn't hear a spoiler, thinking maybe, just maybe, the episode would turn out to be stupendously awesome, the way we wish all season finales would be.

It was. And so much more.

The first 45 minutes or so were classic Dexter. Dexter is going after Trinity. Right in the middle of the car chase, he gets a phone call from his wife Rita who wants to know if they can go on their honeymoon this weekend. I'm trying hard not to get annoyed at her the way other viewers have, because I happen to like Rita and I think she is wonderful to Dexter. But I wish she would hang up the dang phone already. Can't she hear he's in traffic?

Dexter eventually catches up to Trinity and stabs him with the needle. Then he gets arrested for side-swiping someone's mirror during that car chase. By the time he gets out of jail, Trinity is gone. Now Trinity is onto him. Trinity goes to leave town. But not so fast--Dexter has tampered with his car and it breaks down in the middle of nowhere. Dexter slams the hood on Trinity's head and takes him to the killing spot. He executes Trinity, appropriately, with a hammer.

After dumping the body, Dexter drives home to get his stuff to meet Rita and the baby for their vacation. Rita has left him a voicemail telling him to check out the full moon. He calls Rita back. Except her phone is ringing in the house with him. Strange. Then he hears the baby crying. He follows the sound to the bathroom and sees the baby sitting on the floor, crying in a pool of blood. AHHHHH.

Then he sees Rita.

Lying in a bathtub full of her own blood.

She is dead. Trinity got to her before Dexter got to Trinity.

I don't remember what happened after that. I sort of blacked out.

Now, less than 24 hours after seeing the finale, I'm still stunned. I read an interview with one of the show's executive producers, and he confirmed Rita really is dead. It wasn't a dream or hallucination.

I honestly have no idea how the show will move on from this point. What happened was so terrible, so incomprehensible. I can't imagine Angel's reaction. Deb's. I can't fathom what the new Dexter will be like, how he will go on. I don't want to think about Astor and Cody.

Dexter. What a shocking, devastating finale. And who saw that coming???

Jersey Shore: Putting the Dirty in Jersey.

I don't claim to have high standards for TV. In fact, I am proud of the fact that I watch just about everything--quality shows, trashy shows, in-between shows. I watch stuff that nobody watches (Chuck) and stuff that everybody watches (American Idol).

My only standards are this: a) The pilot impresses me (Brothers & Sisters failed this test) and b) Tim Allen's not in it. That's really it. As long as the show passes both categories, I'm in.

With that said, I now confess: I have been watching Jersey Shore. And not hating it.

Don't get me wrong--not hating the show is competely different from not hating the people in it. The cast of Jersey Shore make Speidi look like Mensa candidates. Everyone is a stereotype of themselves, if that even makes sense. Also, their nicknames are ridiculous. The most laughable one is the one Mike calls himself. I won't even write it here, that's how dumb the nickname is.

Also, word to the wise (guess that would exclude this whole cast): It's not a nickname if you give it to yourself.

Annoying nicknames and obnoxious people aside, Jersey Shore is shamefully addictive. It's basically a documentary about trashy people who think they are not trashy at all. You cannot help but feel terrific about yourself after watching this (though you might feel the urge to shower). "At least I didn't get fired on my 2nd day on the job," you might think. Or, "At least I can peel garlic."

Call it Psychotherapy for the Couch Potato's Soul.

Monday, December 14, 2009

One Tree Hill: Season 7 Observations.

This weekend, I watched a boatload of One Tree Hills. I am now only two episodes behind.

Here are some things that struck me about the season:

1. There are a lot of women with the same hair color. Haley, Millie, Alex, Rachel and Quinn all have the same reddish brown hair. It's getting hard to tell them all apart.

2. Robert Buckley needs to be on every show, if only so we can stare at his beautiful face all the time. He looks like a skinner version of Scott Speedman. Hot diggity dog.

3. What do you mean, "Zero is not a size"?! A few episodes back, Millie appeared in Brooke's fashion show wearing a wife-beater with the words ZERO IS NOT A SIZE scrawled across the front. Sigh. Don't make us skinny girls feel bad about ourselves, One Tree Hill. That just ain't right.

4. Haley and Nathan should have more kids. Is anyone else wondering why they don't? Jamie is like 7 years old. He could use a little brother or sister to be clever around. And it's not like Naley couldn't afford a few more little'uns. They live in a giant mansion with a pool. You know what? I predict that by season's end, Haley is pregnant. With twins.

5. How does this show get to me every time? One Tree Hill is not supposed to make you cry. It's supposed to be this over-the-top, schmaltzy melodrama set to the soundtrack of some very angsty recording artists. You're supposed to roll your eyes at how ridiculous the plots are. And yet, one of the recent episodes managed to pull up a tear in the back of my eye. It was the one with Robert Buckley's ex-wife Sarah appearing as a ghost that Robert Buckley can't let go of. They fell in love jumping off a pier. Yes, that is corny, and yes, I love it. The day she died, they were dancing in their kitchen, and then she went to get some grape Kool-Aid, and then she collapsed on the floor and died.

Fiancé: See? That's why we should never dance.

It's pretty amazing how One Tree Hill has undergone so many changes and taken so many risks and is still going strong. How many shows have gone 7 seasons without jumping the shark? How many shows have overhauled its cast (including writing off two of its leads) and still hold on to its audience? How many shows have done the fast-forward-a-couple-of-years thing and carried it off beautifully? I'll tell you. Not many.

One Tree Hill, may you live long and continue to entertain us for years to come.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Glee, Our Lives Will Suck Without You. For The Next Four Months.


We waited all season for that Will-Emma kiss and we finally got it!

I am so, so happy it went down like that. I was actually depressed at the end of the scene where Emma walks out of her wedding saying, "Yes. You JUST left your wife." I thought, they can't end the fall season this way. Not with a sad ice sculpture of a hockey player and a beautifully wrapped present from Will. Not with Ken standing Emma up and Emma saying she had to quit her job at the school so she wouldn't have to think about her broken heart every day.

No. It just couldn't end like that.

So Glee must know its fans well. Not only that, but Glee must RESPECT its fans. How do we know this? Two reasons.

1. That kiss.

2. Having the other glee clubs steal New Directions' songs. Yes, it would've been great to see our favorite songs sung again at sectionals. You know New Directions would've brought the house down. (I don't know about you, but I was especially eager to see "Wheels" again.) But the writers at Glee were smart. They realized that yes, it would've been just aiiight to have ND perform their hits again...or they could perform NEW songs. Send their fans off with new material to tide them over till next year. Now that's respect.

I was also moved by ND's big thank-you performance for Will in the form of Kelly Clarkson's "My Life Would Suck Without You." Even before Lea Michele finished the first lyric, I could hear, in my head, what the chorus would sound like. That's how good that song is. That's how perfect it was for the scene. Ahh. What a satisfying way to end the first half of the season.

Now my question to you is this: What are we all going to do without Glee for the next four months?

Sue Sylvester Quote of the Week: Get ready for the ride of your life, Will Schuester. You're about to board the Sue Sylvester Express. Destination: horror!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

ABC: Conveyor Belt of Crap.

My dear readers, I wish I didn't have to write this entry.

Oh, who am I kidding?! I love to skewer crappy shows!

So get a load of this latest masterpiece from ABC. It's called Conveyor Belt of Love. First of all, the name. I'll give you a minute to process the fact that it is actually someone's job to sit there and come up with a name like that.

Second, the premise: Five women are given the "opportunity" (quotes used on purpose) to pick from 30 guys who go by them one by one on a conveyor belt. If a woman likes a guy, she can pull him aside and watch as more guys go by. If she likes another guy, she can tell the first guy to beat it. And on and on, until all 30 men have gone by. If two women like the same dude, he can turn around and pick which woman he wants.

That is the stupidest concept I've ever heard.

Sadly, it's more than a concept at this point. It's a REALITY. ABC is scheduling it to air after The Bachelor premiere on January 4. I already blogged about how boring the latest Bachelor selection is, so I won't go into that again. I just wanted to warn you about this load of turd so you can happily avoid it and instead, watch a higher quality show, like Jersey Shore.

Thankfully, this is a one-time-only special. However, if it performs well in the ratings, ABC will make it into a series. This must not happen. It musn't!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Chuck: How Do I Miss Thee? Well, For One Thing, I'm Dreaming About Scott Bakula.

This is how much I miss Chuck.

Last night, I dreamt I got a Chuck script emailed to me in advance of the show's premiere in January. There were at least four lines in it that made me laugh my head off. One of them involved Ocean's Eleven. I wish I could remember what that line was. Anyway, in the dream, I thought, "Wow, this show is so GREAT. People don't know what they're missing."

Then I got to watch a preview of the show, and there was a scene with Scott Bakula. This is how much I miss Chuck--Scott friggin' BAKULA shows up in my dreams.

Chuck has a special two-hour premiere on Sunday, January 10 from 9-11PM ET. If you're not watching, there is no way your life is complete.

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Amazing Race Finale: Count Those P-P-P-P-Poker Chips.

Sunday was a sad day at Casa Linda's TV, for The Amazing Race ended its 15th season. What will I do all winter without Phil Keoghan and his crazy accent?

As you already know, I didn't like any of the remaining teams. But I LOVED the challenges. First of all, they took place in Vegas. That in and of itself was a breath of fresh air, after a month of Europe's Beautiful But Boring Cities. Second, Cirque du Soleil was involved. Third, so was Wayne Newton. He looked jolly and well preserved.

(It's okay, Gay Brothers. I blanked on his name, too.)

People have complained that this season's TAR has been full of lame challenges. I couldn't agree more. Building a snowman. Sliding down a big slide. Zzz. However, the finale definitely made up for that with this challenge: Rappelling down the side of the Mandalay Bay. Holy cannoli, that looked fun.

Coming into the episode, I was rooting for the black and white team. However, when Ericka started her thousandth screaming tantrum, at Cirque du Soleil of all awesome places, I said ENOUGH. Enough of you, Ericka!

I honestly do not know how Brian has not lost his mind by now. Brian, if you're reading this, my condolences.

In the end, Team Master Race won. Is anyone surprised? Well, I was a little surprised the wind resistance didn't slow down Cheyne and his hair as they rappelled down the Mandalay Bay. But other than that, not surprised at all.

All in all, it wasn't the best season of TAR in terms of teams and challenges, but dang it if I didn't love this show anyway. Even if Phil did keep his pants on all season.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Survivor: Samoa: The Never-Ending Season.

I just counted.

There are still EIGHT contestants left on Survivor: Samoa.

This show's been on for 3 months.

Cheese Louise.

Also, I need to stop announcing who I'm rooting for. John the Rocket Scientist got voted off last night, in the 4th straight blindside of the season. There was so much strategizing last night, I have no idea how that happened. Guess they blindsided me too.

Last night's episode featured one of my favorite segments--the food/luxury auction. Every season, Jeff does the auction. Every season, about half the contestants just sit there and don't bid on anything. Before long, the auction ends and they come away with nothing. I don't get it. Why WOULDN'T you jump all over every item as soon as it comes up? That blonde who dropped $200 on a pb&j last night? Far as I'm concerned, she's the smartest one of the bunch. (Yeah, I still don't know her name.)

My other favorite feature of Survivor is the family reunions/letters/video messages from home. I cry every single time they do it. I'm tearing up right now remembering whatshisface proposing to whatsherface that one season. Sigh. I'm hoping it comes up soon.

Survivor's finale is set for Sunday, Dec. 20. Will Russell ever use his idol? Will Shambo ever stop talking to those chickens? Will I ever learn everybody's names? Stay tuned!

FlashForward: Twists and Turns, and Brunch for Dinner.

How awesome was this week's FlashForward?

For one thing, we learn who shoots Demetri Noh. I don't know about you, but I assumed he'd get shot by one of the bad guys who started the whole blackout. Instead, we learn it's Mark Benford, aka the boring lead character, who shoots him. Holy twist, Batman!

We also learn that in the world of FlashForward, people in Hong Kong eat dim sum for dinner. Dim sum is traditionally a brunch-y meal, so call me crazy, but I'm thinking the writers didn't do their research.

We also learn the truth behind Demetri's fiancee Zoe's flash forward. She thought she and Demetri were at their wedding. But they were actually at his FUNERAL. Makes total sense, as all the guests, and Zoe, were wearing white, the color of mourning in many Asian cultures. (At least the writers got that part right.) There was also a really nice moment between Zoe and Demetri's mom, who knew her son was going to die. Mom says, "When I saw the love you had for him [at the funeral], I knew you were right for him." Aww.

By the way, you know the blurry image of the guy in the video footage, the one who was walking around the stadium while everyone else was blacked out? That guy looks just like Lloyd Simcoe.

Speaking of Lloyd, a crazy thing happened at the end that led me to believe my fiance is psychic. Basically, Lloyd is having his son transferred to another hospital, and he, Olivia, and the kid are saying their goodbyes. Then, as the ambulance guys load the kid into the car:

Fiance: Those guys in the ambulance are bad.

Me: What?

Fiance: Yeah. Watch. They're going to shoot everyone.

Me: That's crazy. Why would you say that? They're just transporting the kid--

All of a sudden, the kid is yelling, the ambulance guys are forcing him into the car, and one of them goes to shoot Olivia. Lloyd steps in front of her and convinces them to leave her alone. They drive off. I'm stunned.

Me: How did you know that???

Fiance: I'm just that good.

We also learn in this episode that Mark Benford is a pretty inept FBI agent. At the dim sum place, he upends a table and takes Shohreh Aghdashloo hostage. He drags her outside, with all of Shohreh's men and Demetri and some black guy who I guess is Mark's boss following them. Everyone aims their gun at Mark, and he finally surrenders. Then the black guy fires Mark. FIRES HIM. I did not see that one coming. I mean, I could see that he was a terrible cop (did he really think he could get away w/ kidnapping Shohreh?), and a dull man to boot, but did he really have to be fired?

Don't worry, Mark Benford. The higher-ups at 24 are always firing Jack Bauer, and he always manages to stick around and save the day. There's hope for you yet.

Also, some stuff was revealed about Simon and the mysterious towers in the desert. I don't care about those towers. I just know I won't understand what they are, what they mean, etc. because this is just like the Dharma Initiative on Lost. Once they got into that whole thing, I was lost (no pun intended) and had to give up the show.

I really don't want to give up FlashForward. Especially since I'm hoping Demetri Noh gets promoted to replace Mark McSnoozy. I don't think that'll actually happen, but hey, a girl can hope.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Glee: More Jumping and Less Smiling, Please.

Glee has been called one of the most uneven series on TV this season, with stellar episodes/musical numbers followed by, well, less-than-stellar ones. I totally agree. Sometimes the show starts to derail, but then it pulls itself right back on track in the best way possible.

Case in point: Smile vs. Jump.

I love the song Smile. I love it for its happy, bouncy, eff-off attitude toward a cheating boyfriend. If you didn't know the song and just listened to the music and had to guess what the music video would look like, you would never in a million years guess that it features Lily Allen hiring thugs to beat up her cheating boyfriend.

So you can understand my "WTF?!" when Rachel started singing it to Finn to get him in the picture-taking mood.

I mean, what was that???

Smile made absolutely no sense in that context. You know what? Rachel and Finn didn't need to sing anything at all. They could've had Rachel do something cute to make Finn smile. I can just see it now. Rachel makes Finn smile, and Finn thinks to himself, "Gee, Quinn never makes me smile like this," and he suddenly realizes he should be with Rachel. He goes and dumps Quinn. And then QUINN gets to sing the song. Bing bam boom.

Now for Jump. It was, by far, the most joyous number of the season. All those glee clubbers dancing and jumping around on mattresses. How fun did that look? I don't know about you, but it made me want to buy a dang mattress. A whole stack of 'em. What I really liked about the number was how it wasn't too coordinated. Everyone was doing their own thing on the mattresses. In other words, no matter where you looked on the screen, your eyeballs were entertained.

I was also riveted by the scene where Will confronts Terri. Oh man, that was the moment we waited for all season. And the way it all came out made Terri look even crazier than we all thought she was. Still, a very, very, VERY tiny part of me felt sorry for her. VERY tiny part. I actually liked her more than Emma this episode, because while I can understand going through crazy lengths to keep someone I love, I can't understand forcing myself to marry a guy I don't even want to touch.

Now, introducing the Sue Sylvester quote of the week: "And while [the eye doctors] were in there, I told them, go ahead and yank out those tear ducts. Wasn't using them."

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Ugly Betty: Back from the Dead Zone.

Ugly Betty is moving to Wednesday at 10PM this January. You know what this means: A bigger and more compatible audience--it'll air right after Cougar Town. Looks like ABC finally corrected its boneheaded decision to move Betty to Fridays. And it only took them four months realize this. Better late than never.

Sadly, I have not watched a single episode of Ugly Betty this season. I had a bunch of episodes downloaded, but they somehow got erased. Anywhosers, I'll definitely try to catch up over Christmas break. From what I hear, this season has been STELLAR.

Nice move, ABC!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Freshman Fall Series: How Are They Doing?

Now that many shows are starting their winter hiatus, I thought it'd be a good time to evaluate the new shows. Let's break it down by network:


Modern Family. This is one I predicted would do well, and it's since been picked up for a full season. I've enjoyed every episode. The show is sweet without being saccharine. It would warm the heart of Ebenezer Scrooge.

Cougar Town. I predicted this show to bomb. In fact, it's doing quite well. This will be one of those shows lots of people watch that I'll never understand why. Like Bones.

Hank. It got canceled. Sorry, Kelsey Grammer. Maybe you could guest-star on Greek with your daughter Spencer. You can't play her dad, since that role's already taken, but maybe you could be a wacky professor or something.

The Middle. It's doing decent. Was picked up for a full season. Congrats, Patricia Heaton.

Eastwick. I predicted this show to bomb. It has been canceled, but ABC is committed to airing all the episodes that have been shot. Guess this beats airing reruns of According to Jim. Though not by much.

FlashForward. I wasn't sure about this one at first. I only gave it a shot because of John Cho. I'm very glad I did--it's one of my favorite new shows. The fiancé and I treat each episode like a movie event, complete with popcorn and dimmed lights. Don't judge.

V. I didn't think I would like this. I was right. The fiancé has gotten me to sit through all four episodes. With each one, my soul dies a little more.

The Forgotten. Who watches this show? Anybody? Bueller?


Accidentally on Purpose. I predicted it to bomb. It's holding its own. I guess audiences like their cougars. Congrats, Jon Foster--you're finally on a non-cancelled show!

NCIS: LA. It's doing spectacular. No surprise, with the legions of NCIS fans out there. Congrats, LL Cool J and Chris O'Donnell.

Three Rivers: I predicted it to bomb. It has been canceled. CBS may or may not air the remaining episodes. I'm sad for Daniel Henney. Hey, maybe Grey's Anatomy will pick him up. He's definitely worthy of a McNickname.

The Good Wife: It got rave reviews, and it's doing great for CBS. Congrats to Julianna Margulies. I still can't spell your name without the help of Google, but you seem to be doing a nice job on the show.


Trauma/Mercy: I put these together because they are basically the same show. One of them is about nurses, and the other is about EMTs. I think. And one of them is canceled and one of them is barely hanging on. I don't care enough to look into this further.

Community: I like Joel McHale from The Soup. I watched about fifteen minutes of this before I couldn't take it any longer. Sorry, Joel. I think NBC could go either way with this show, and since they don't have much else in the way of comedy, look for it to stick around.


Brothers. It's right up there with Viva Laughlin as the most laughably horrendous show in history. At least that's what I hear. I haven't seen a second of it. Kudos to the show for introducing a wheelchair-bound character though.

Glee. Speaking of wheelchairs, this is another of my favorite new shows of the season. You can't watch Glee without a smile on your face. It is scientifically impossible. Also: Every Wednesday night, my Facebook is inundated with status updates about people watching this show. And yet, it does just aiiight in the ratings. What gives? I think Sue Sylvester needs to give Nielsen a call.

The Cleveland Show. This is a spinoff of Family Guy, a show my fiancé got me into. Neither he nor I have seen a second of The Cleveland Show. Yay for diversity. Yay for bear neighbors. That's all I got for this show.

The CW:

Melrose Place. Love it, love it. Love that Ashlee Simpson-Wentz is leaving the show. Sad about Colin Egglesfield's departure. Love Ella Sims. She might be the coolest and baddest new girl on TV. Does anyone else think it's weird that neither Thomas Calabro, Heather Locklear, Josie Bissett nor Laura Leighton appear to have aged a day from the original Melrose?

The Beautiful Life: TBL. I had this show paired with Melrose as a hit this season, and boy was I wrong. In my defense, I had not seen any of this show before giving my prediction. Still. Lesson learned. If Mischa Barton's in it, it will probably fail.

The Vampire Diaries. I call it a rainy day show because it's not something you have to watch immediately, but it's more than sufficient for a rainy day with nothing to do. Also, Stefan, played by the handsome Paul Wesley: He's all the reason you need to watch this show.

That's a wrap!