Right at the end of 2011 Todd VanDerWerff, who I unofficially inherited these reviews from after Pilot Viruet passed the torch, wrote an article on the AV Club discussing how some shows on TV existed as “Nice places to visit”.
While the initial focus was on dramas he turns to sitcoms and describes how he divides them into two categories: “shows that aim for greatness and try to push the boundaries of the form, and shows that just want to create a bunch of characters that are fun to hang out with.” Happy Endings is my personal benchmark for the latter, with Parks and Recreation coming a close second. It’s not to say that neither show exhibits good writing [both do, in their own ways], more that they’re half hours of television in which viewers can relax, content to spend time with characters who are familiar and comfortable to them.
2 Broke Girls appears to want to be one of these shows. Continue reading
Posted in Comedy, review, television, writing
Tagged 2 Broke Girls, And the Kilt Trip, Beth Behrs, Blarney Bill, Caroline, Cast, CBS, characters, Current Total, Deke, Earl, Garrett Morris, Han, hang-out show, hang-out sitcom, Happy Endings, How I Met Your Mother, Kat Dennings, kilt, Matthew Moy, Max, Oleg, review, S3E19, St. Patrick's Day, television, Todd VanDerWerff, TV
We open up with the last Buck Marshall ad we’ll ever see, the IFIB rep. letting us know that shows like the one we’re about to see “worry the public about the dangers of industrial food production.” The issue with this, of course, is that “[their] research shows that worry leads to stress and depression, which is detrimental to your health.” That’s actually great to know, since I was worried going into the season finale.
Last week’s installment was extremely shaky, scoring points for being informative and funny at the same time but ultimately failing when it came to raising the stakes [ironic given the episode title]. Things ended with Chip in jail believing that Sophie had stabbed him in the back, and so things start with him sitting in an interrogation room. A promising enough beginning, I suppose. Continue reading
Posted in advertising, Comedy, environmentalism, food, health, review, television
Tagged Animoil, Buck Marshall, Chip Randolph, Chipotle, comedy, Ends Meat, factory farm, Farmed And Dangerous, finale, Hulu, IFIB, Industrial Food Image Bureau, John Sloan, Karynn Moore, Nick Clifford, nightmare fuel, Oleyum, PetroPellets, Ray Wise, resistant, review, S1E4, Sophia, Sustainable Family Farming Association, sustainable farming, TV
Speaking on the subject of cornered enemies, the brilliant tactician Sun Tzu warns us to always leave the enemy a way out, lest they rally and defeat you out of desperation. Far be it from me to disagree with the general, but I think the single exception to the rule may be the culture wars. It’s so rare to get a major figure so utterly on the ropes that I don’t think anyone could blame you from moving up and laying into ‘em, and readers, Piers Morgan is on the ropes.
The ape isn’t on the ropes, but you get the idea…
American readers might know Piers solely as an obnoxious CNN commentator, and while that’s true, Morgan’s condescending coverage of gun control (his favored dead horse over the past few months) is really only the tip of the iceberg. Continue reading
Posted in America, Europe, media, morality, news, politics, television
Tagged America, Britain, cnn, ethics, gun control, guns, hacking, hoax, Ian Hilsop, insider trading, Iraq, Iraqi, Jeremy Clarkson, jouranlist, phone, Piers Morgan, soldiers, stock market, Tabloid, The Daily Mirror, torture
This week opens up with the strangely comforting scene of a table of eccentric [see: easily mockable] diners and the two girls’ reactions to them. Instead of hipsters or, I don’t know, bronies, we have half a dozen cumberbitches fresh from Sherlock Con. I had planned to live the rest of my life without ever typing out that term, but that’s behind us so let’s move on-
What you all have to understand is that I take everything I watch on TV very, very seriously. This means being extremely perplexed upon hearing Max insinuate that she never went to high school, particularly because it makes the story of how she lost her virginity [see the Stray Observations here and here] that much more disturbing. The thing is, I don’t think you have to be a stickler for continuity to see the gargantuan staring-you-in-the-face error in this episode. Continue reading
Posted in Comedy, review, television, writing
Tagged 2 Broke Girls, And the Near Death Experience, Benedict Cumberatch, Beth Behrs, Caroline, Cast, CBS, characters, Chef Nicolas, continuity, Current Total, Deke, Earl, Garrett Morris, Juliette, Kat Dennings, ledge, Max, Oleg, open marriage, open relationship, review, S3E18, set, sex, Sherlock, television, Tumblr, TV
Nobody would blame you for not remembering Heroes. The show’s stint at the top was so short and its tailspin into oblivion was so swift and violent that it’s once glorious reputation and critical acclaim has almost been obscured entirely.
“Eclipsed”, if you will…
For those of you unfamiliar, let me offer a quick recap.
Heroes followed a number of seemingly unrelated people who, in the days following a solar eclipse, find that they’ve developed superpowers. As they struggle to cope with their new abilities, their storylines begin to entwine as the looming threat of destruction, along with a mysterious and sinister figure, approaches.
The show’s total simplicity made it both accessible to a wide audience (especially one that wouldn’t necessarily consider themselves comic book/superhero fans) and further made the show easy to follow, even with its large cast of characters. That large cast in turn meant that most everyone would have someone they’d be able to relate to, and kept the episodes moving along at a decent pace with no real room for boredom. And all of that went out the window.
Posted in television, writing
Tagged antagonist, audience, Cancelled, Cast, character, characters, Community, drama, heroes, Heroes Reborn, NBC, plot, Powers, protagonist, reboot, Renewed, Season 1, Season 2, Season 3, Season 4, Season 5, soap opera, superhero, TV, twist, villains, writer's strike, writing