Saturday, September 25, 2010

Brand Spankin' New

Ok we’re nearing the end of Premiere week on fall TV.  The reviews are in.  But are mine?  It’s…

Today we’ll be focusing on the new shows.  Now like I said before, I love going through, planning out my schedule, programming the DVR, and sitting down and watching a show unfold.  This year it was a little different.  First of all, I had no pre-conceived notions as to how the shows would be because I had seen no advertisements for them.  And the “programming” was a little different…write down what shows I wanted to see, figure out when they aired, and the next day attempt to find the pilot episode somewhere online that supports a non-US based internet connection.  But I still did it!  With the exception of one show I couldn’t find and three that haven’t premiered yet…I’ll get back to those ones later I guess.
Now remember…I don’t watch crime dramas.  Or really any dramas.  Although I usually give non-crime-drama dramas a chance because usually they’re awesome but unfortunately I end up putting it by the way side (ex: The Good Wife…if you like drama…watch that one!)  So here’s me reviews of the new shows…and whether or not they’ll last…

Sundays at 9 on HBO
Will it Last: Definitely!
Plot: Steve Buscemi, the guy who has made a career out of playing “the weird creepy dude” has landed a lead as a 20s gangster.  He plays politician Enoch Thompson, a man set on keeping Atlantic City wet during the era of Prohibition.  Lots of relationships being built, and historical figures have a role including a young driver by the name of Al Capone.
My Review: It’s BRILLIANT!  A Sopranos of the Charleston era when Gangsters really did run the streets.  Beautiful and historically accurate costumes, sets, and performances including (unfortunate) minstrel and racism.  Buscemi is genius in his portrayal and it’s about time he got his recognition.

Wednesdays at 10 on CBS
Will it Last: I hope so
Plot: I already have broken my no-crime-drama rule but I just love the actors.  Jim Beluchi and Jerry O'Connell are low end Las Vegas defense lawyers.  They’re the required amount of rebel mixed with sincerity to create any good court room drama.
My review: Both actors usually play comedic roles and star in sitcoms.  So this show is a big step for both of them.  I like that they are remaining true to themselves and not trying to reinvent themselves as “serious” actors.  But they’re going to have to add some more plot if they want to last over all the other crime and court dramas out there.

Wednesdays at 9 on the CW
Will it Last: On the CW – yes.  If it were any other network, probably not.
Plot: Alyson Michalka has lost her college pre-law scholarship and is forced to join the cheerleading squad to pay her way through.  Ashley Tisdale plays the spunky and deeply religious team captain.  Think "Bring it On" in TV form.
My review: I like dancing, and this how delivers enough dance sequences to keep me interested.  It’s the same reason I (and others) watch movies like Step it Up, Burn the Floor, Center Stage, etc.  The plot lines aren’t great, but the dancing makes it all worth it.  And although I have never watched a full High School Musical through, I do love Ashley Tisdale…I think she’s adorable.

Mondays at 9 on FOX
Will it Last: If they can add new plot twists
Plot: James Wolk is a man in love with his wife in Dallas Texas and his girlfriend in midland.  He’s also a scam artist raised by his father.  Trouble is, he’s starting to develop a conscience and real feelings, which is getting him in deep.  Can he make both work without getting run out of both towns?
My review: It’s an interesting concept, and he’s obviously smart, which will keep me interested and lets me wonder what problems they’re going to throw at him to see how he solves them.  But the attempting to hide both lives will get old fast, so new plot lines will have to be introduced into the upcoming shows/seasons.  Jon Voight plays the perfect rich Texas oil tycoon father in law to add a touch of drama.

Mondays at 9:30 on CBS
Will it last: Nope
Plot: Billy Gardell and Melissa McCarthy play over eaters who meet at an OA meeting and flirt a little.  Mike is a cop, and Molly is a school teacher, and their co stars include the pot head sister, token black guy partner, and Swoosie Kurtz as the sassy chocolate cake loving Mom.
My review: This show is just a one long stand up routine about being fat.  It’s kind of sad.  And I love both actors (especially seeing my recent completion of Gilmore Girls) and I think there can be more to it than that.  I’ve seen them both do things that have nothing to do with being overweight.  Also, something that pisses me off…why can’t there be any average sized people in this show?  There’s sizes 0s and 2s and plus sizes…where are the average size 6 through 10 women (and men)?

Thursdays at 8 on ABC
Will it Last: Yes
Plot: A mockumentary follows ten 18 year olds on the verge of their year 2000 high school graduation are interviewed about their upcoming lives and hopes for the future.  A remarkable entanglement of all “cliques” results in a much different entanglement 10 years later.  It’s hard to describe all the relationships, so I won’t try.
My Review:  If you are aged 23 to 32, you will love this show.  The 28 year olds in the show are you in some way or another.  And the flashbacks to 2000 (and the music!) really bring back the school days.  My only complaint is the fact that the intertwining seems a little far fetched…I mean…all ten are still all up in each others lives even though they were so different in high school.  Doesn’t matter though.  It makes you think about your own life a lot and the direction that it’s taken.  Not that I got pregnant on prom night, married the rich kid, am an army wife, or work in DC as a lawyer…but it’s still crazy how my own life has taken it’s turns.  And I’m sure everyone who watches it will think about their own life as a documentary.

Tuesdays at 8 on ABC
Will it Last: Most likely
Plot: A family turns super hero after a plane crash in South America.  The Dad has super strength (meaning muscle, [almost] bullet proof, and super jumps.)  The mom is super fast (with the ability to see everything in slow motion when she’s moving at super speed) the teenage angsty daughter can hear thoughts (when looking into eyes) and the used to be learning disabled son is now super smart.  It’s Fantastic Four meets the Incredibles.
My review: It’s cute.  Like most super hero shows, I’m sure the first season or two will revolve around episode constrained cases that they solve together.  But eventually some long term problems will have to present themselves to keep people tuning in every week.

Thursdays at 9:30 on NBC
Will it Last: I hope not
Plot: A middle class American is transferred to India to manage a call center for an American Novelty company.  Can he transform his bunch of misfits into hard core selling machines while catching the eye of the Aussie managing the company next door.
My rewiew: Horrible.  And I usually give NBC shows a chance.  It’s an attempt at The Office while making all the inappropriate (but hilarious in that setting) Michael Scott type racist comments…but only about the Indian culture.  And the introduction of the necessary “white” characters seems to be a bit hap hazard.  And the fact that it was totally a movie.  I’ll keep watching because I always try and watch more than one episode, but I don’t think I’m going to enjoy it.

Tuesdays at 9 on ABC
Will it Last: sure
Plot: Lucas Neff plays Jimmy, who has a one night stand with a girl after rescuing her from a crazed lunatic.  Turns out however, she’s the crazed lunatic, as well as a serial killer, and 15 months later with a six month baby on his lap, Jimmy watches her fry on the electric chair.  He gets no help from his red neck family including mom and dad who got pregnant with him at 15, cousin who likes to rave, has a finger mustache tattoo, and lives in a tent in the laundry room, and senile Great Grandma who walks around with no shirt (and sometime no bra as well.)  In the end however, they decide they can do this and rename Princess Beyonce with mom if-it-was-a-girl name – Hope.
My review: This was a lot cuter than I thought it would be.  The red neck aspect adds humor, but there are some sweet moments as well like when Mom and Dad sing a lullaby to help the baby fall asleep.  I think there’s enough plot to keep this going for a while without the need of additional drama, so here’s hoping it only gets better.

Tuesdays at 9:30 on ABC
Will it Last: PLEASE!!!
Plot: Will Arnett is a spoiled rich boy who is in love with his teenage crush, played by Keri Russell.  Only problem for him is, she’s a hard-core activist set on bringing his family’s company down.  Only problem for her is, her daughter seems to like him…as does she.
My Review:  It’s Gob Bluth all over again and I’m not complaining.  Will Arnett makes me smile in so many ways and I think this show has a ridiculous enough background (rich guy who can do whatever he wants including buying mini horses and thinking six liters of soda costs $100) that it’s going to keep bringing the laughs.

Thursdays at 8:30 on CBS
(It’s pronounced “bleep my dad says”)
Will it Last: If it stops being a stand up routine
Plot: William Shatner plays a racist, sexist, Girl Scout hating father of two boys.  Jonathan Sadowski, one of the sons, has come to live with him after losing his job at a magazine and running out of money.  They have a strained barely-see-each-other relationship so situational comedy is sure to ensue.
My review: I love William Shatner.  And there’s a great moment where the son is imitating him and he says “Why can no one do a good impression of me?” which made me laugh a lot.  But every line (by every character) seems to be a joke about what a politically incorrect father would say.  So hopefully, they can get away from the gimmick and just focus on Shatner being the offensive one.

I know I was a lot.  But tell me...which ones sounded interesting to you?

Word of the day: nieuwe - new


  1. The ones I've actually seen so far are Raising Hope and Running Wilde, and I liked the first episodes. They certainly weren't mind blowingly awesome, but here's to hoping they only get better.

  2. I LOVE The Defenders! I'm really hoping that it does last. I think it's great! I also watched My Generation and I was really thinking I'd like it but was disappointed in it.

  3. I haven't seen a lot of the dramas you wrote about, but I agree with all of them based on the commercials. I love Running Wilde! I can see Raising Hope being the new My Name is Earl, so it'll be on a lot longer than Outsourced. If my prayers are heard of course.


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