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Archive for the ‘It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ Category

by Judi

Note: The title for today’s Top Five topic was clearly all Beal. I apologize for the bits of cheese that just flew out of your monitor.

5. Courtney Cox in Friends (1994 – 2004) and Cougar Town (2009)

Picture 1Sometimes, it feels like Courtney Cox has been around FOREVER. That Springsteen video, Family Ties, and then ten years on Friends, the short-lived Dirt on FX and now Cougar Town. I realize that it might be a little immature to count Cougar Town as Cox’s second iconic role but, honestly, I don’t see how we can ignore it. After just four episodes of the ABC’s Wednesday night show, my opinion of Courtney Cox has done a total 180. Not that I didn’t appreciate her character on Friends or anything. Far from it. The statement “she’s a Monica” has saved me on more than one occasion when I find myself trying to describe someone who is completely anal, a control freak and hyper-competitive. I just didn’t know if she could be funny as someone other than the Gellar-Bing we all know and love and sometimes find mildly annoying.

But she is. Jules Cobb, in point of fact, is far funnier and more real than Monica ever was (though both share a manic crazy gene) and Cox is so outrageously perfect in the role that you shouldn’t be surprised if, in a couple of years, we all say, “Monica who?”

4. Rob Lowe in West Wing (1996 – 2006) and Brothers & Sisters (2006 – Present)

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This is not the first time on this site where I have to admit that I would watch Rob Lowe do anything (ANYTHING). I don’t care if he’s a dirty tool in real life, I don’t care how many nanny scandals or sex tape disasters he falls into, I don’t care how tanned he gets. I STILL watch that “Visit California” commercial just for those three seconds where he’s sitting on that damned log. I. love him.

I hate when people refer to his “comeback” because, really, his is just a fantastic career trajectory. Teen heartthrob, Brat Pack member, evil doer in now-classic SNL movies like Wayne’s World and Tommy Boy, then a plumb role on West Wing, a few failed pilots and now Brothers & Sisters and movies like The Invention of Lying. And that commercial where he’s sitting on that damned log. He seems to have found his place as a smart, wily, hot politician which is ENDLESSLY preferable to how he could’ve ended up. [Cough- McDreamy- hack- cough.] I’ll take Sam Seaborn and Senator McCallister, thankyouverymuch.

(Ok yes, I only posted this second clip because he’s shirtless. I AM A HUMAN BEING, PEOPLE.)

3. Heather Locklear in Dynasty (1981 – 1989) and Melrose Place (1992 – 1999)

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There was a time in the ’90s when, if a TV show was starting to see a drop in ratings, a studio exec would yell, “Get Heather Locklear on the phone!” It’s hilarious that our favorite TV blond bitch has pretty much evolved into the TV equivalent of an emergency adrenaline shot.  Melrose Place needs a Joan Collins-like fix? Get Heather. Spin City suffering without Michael J. Fox? Get Heather. Scrubs needs a foil worthy of Perry Cox? You get the picture.

The guys behind the new, revamped Melrose Place obviously agreed because we’re only a couple of episodes into the first season and Amanda Woodward is already making an appearance. Not that I’m sorry about that in the least. Of all the prime-time soap characters throughout the ’90s, Heather Locklear’s Amanda is the only one fierce enough (yup. Fierce. There is no other word, sorry) to look like she actually would eat her own young for a corner office, which makes her endlessly fun to watch.

Her voice is HILARIOUS in Dynasty. Is she 15? You know that for all her posturing, Joan Collins could just destroy her from that reclining position.

2. Danny DeVito in Taxi (1978 – 1983) and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2005 – Present)

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Aw, Danny. Our favorite petite scuzz-ball. On Taxi, he was Louie DePalma- gross, unkempt, lewd and slightly lovable. He secured some classic moments for my favorite cab-centered sitcom. Now, as Frank Reynolds on Sunny, he’s evolved into the kind of creature you find in a shower drain. He’s filthy, his hair’s always standing up and he’s more at home climbing through a disgusting ceiling vent than he is in daylight. God bless him. He  looks like he’s having the time of his life too.

With Taxi, he found a classic comedic role. With Sunny, he’s quickly climbing into cult icon status. How many cast members of the movie Twins can you say that about?

1. Mary Tyler Moore in The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961 – 1966) and The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970 – 1977)

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And now for something a little different. It isn’t easy jumping from a rat-infested ceiling vent to the Rob and Laura Petrie’s house, but I’m going to do my best.

Of all the classic, black & white sitcoms, The Dick Van Dyke show is by far my favorite. I never get tired of watching it, of Rob’s pratfalls, of Sally and Buddy’s wisecracking in the office and, of course, Mary Tyler Moore’s charming, classy Laura. If I had magical TV powers, I would reach through my TV set and plop Mad Men’s Betty Draper in front of her TV to let her see how Laura Petrie gets it done. It IS, after all, possible to be a stay-at-home wife and still be funny, sexy, and believably cheerful. In her cigarette-pants and Jackie O bob, she’s the Audrey Hepburn of housewives. Even her warbling cry is funny.

Then, as if that wasn’t enough, in the ’70s we received spunky, sweet Mary Richards in The Mary Tyler Moore Show, aka TV’s Gift to Mankind, which is still as sharp and funny and adorable as it was thirty years ago. And I’m not just saying that because The Mary Tyler Moore Show pretty much saved me from going insane over my last year of unemployment.  Even though it did. It absolutely did. I don’t know where I would be without Mary Tyler Moore but I know I wouldn’t want to find out.

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by Beal

5.  Cougar Town (2009 – Present) – ABC Wednesdays 9:30

Cougar_TownI’m really going out on a limb here, being that only three episodes of this show have aired, but thus far, it is legitimately laugh-out-loud funny. I definitely sing the praises of Courtney Cox. I think she has some serious comedy chops but, it’s not just her, Christa Miller and Busy Phillips are hilarious too. And even though I think the humor in the term “cougar” is lost on me, the show is really funny. Recently divorced Jules (Cox) was married for 20+ years to an 80’s teenager, Bobby–think Wooderson from Dazed & Confused but more funny, less creepy. Her best friend and next door neighbor Ellie (Miller) hates her own baby Stan (who is not so fond of her either) and didn’t smile at him for the fist couple months because she didn’t want smile lines. She bosses Jules around and since they’ve been friends forever, sitting in, sipping wine and playing Scrabble, among other lame activities, she’s upset at Jules’ burgeoning friendship with Laurie (Phillips) who is her young coworker but, more importantly, drunken club trash. Definitely the best comedy of the Fall 2009 line-up.

4. The Sarah Silverman Program (2007 – Present) – Currently on Hiatus – Comedy Central

sarah-silverman-programI love any show that is described by the guide as “an irreverent comedy” and it doesn’t hurt that it stars the hilarious Sarah Silverman as a more selfish and delusional version of herself, her sister Laura, and stand-up comedians Steve Agee and Brian Posehn as gay lovers/stoners/TaB enthusiasts. This show is reminiscent of my all-time favorite comedy Strangers with Candy in that the lead character (Sarah) gets involved in a hot button issue but no matter how well-meaning she is, she fucks it all up (but in a funny way, of course). From poking fun at abortion, to vigilante terrorist hunting, to homelessness and black face, there isn’t a subject too racy for Silverman and her cohorts to mock. Silverman was even nominated for an Oustanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for her portrayal of, well, her bizarro self. Check it out. You might be offended but you’ll laugh.

Check out my favorite scene HERE.

3. Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000 – Present) HBO Sundays 9:00

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Larry David is probably the funniest man you’d never want to meet. As the creator of Seinfeld, he gives the illusion that his offbeat sense of humor is the best in TV Land. However, in his HBO series, a mockumentary style, fake reality show based on his real life, “offbeat sense of humor” could really be replaced with “off-putting sense of humor.” That said, this show is pee-your-pants kind of funny. There is something wrong with David. To say he lacks social graces is an understatement. He’s hilarious and super witty, but more often than not is so socially inept that much of my laughter is of the nervous variety. “Real” celebrities appear in his show on the regular (as themselves but not necessarily true versions of themselves) and even though they’re his friends, they find his antics to be generally pretty offensive. In every episode, though, when he just barely crosses the line, you can’t help but feel for the guy and then squirm and laugh for the remainder of the program while he awkwardly cleans up his social gaffe. Bonus: The cast of Seinfeld appears in multiple episodes this season (don’t call it a reunion!).

2. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2005 – Present) FX Thursdays 10:00

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This is the show that turned network television on its ass. A show that could never exist within the strict confines of “appropriate” found a home on FX in the summer of 2005 and I could not be happier. Touted initially as “Seinfeld on crack” I found myself annoyed at the comparison to the funniest TV foursome of all time. However, these fools are quickly on their way to becoming my favorite four interacting characters on television, ever. This dim-witted gang, made up of siblings Dennis and Dee, idiot Mac and mildly retarded Charlie come up with the greatest half-brained schemes I’ve ever seen. Throw in Danny Devito as the more-than-fucked up father figure and I spend a solid 30 minutes laughing my balls off. Totally original plot lines blended with a lot of ridiculously wonderful ad-libbing and a lack of morals or concern for human life make this the second funniest show on television.

1. 30 Rock (2006 – Present) NBC – Premiers October 15 – 9:30

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It should come as no surprise that this is the funniest show currently on television. After all, it DID just win an Emmy for it, as well as dozens more in the past three years for its overwhelming hilarity. Last year, Tina Fey entered the hearts and minds of millions of Americans for the first time with her DEAD ON impersonation of idiot VP candidate Sarah Palin, but here at NTO, we’ve been loving her for the past three years as Liz Lemon, producer of TGS on 30 Rock (and for years prior as head writer/Weekend Update regular on SNL). Seriously, TGFTF (Thank God for Tina Fey). Not only did she create and write the funniest show on television, but she got Alec Baldwin to star in it. Now, say what you want about this guy’s personal life or acting career, but you can’t deny that he was BORN to play the role of Jack Donaghy, funniest man on television. This show seriously has more one liners and catch phrases than any show since Seinfeld (yes, I am aware that I’ve no mentioned Seinfeld three times, but it’s the gold standard by which all other comedies are judged). And Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan), holy shit! He did nothing for me on SNL and I think he’s mostly playing himself, but I’m okay with that because he’s a riot, a first class idiot for me to laugh with. I wish that something I could say or write would do this show justice, but it won’t, so just trust me and watch it already.

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by Judi

It might seem like we’re stuck in the past over here in NTO Headquarters, throwing around clips of Bewitched and Beverly Hills 90210 and references to My So-Called Life and such but make no mistake- we’re just as obsessed with the new TV shows as we are the classics. That’s why, today, we’re focusing on the Top 5 Best Comedies that are on right now (not literally this second but currently airing new episodes or in production.)

Ok, that’s one of the reasons why I picked this topic. The other reason is that I need a little help here. Last night, for my birthday, a friend and I decided to see a Second City show. Second City, as you may know, is a Chicago institution. It’s a sketch comedy/improv training ground that’s birthed the careers of most of the past and present casts of Saturday Night Live and comedy stars including Martin Short, Jim Belushi, Alan Arkin, Harold Ramis, Gilda Radner and Tina Fey SO I HAD VERY HIGH EXPECTATIONS. What I was NOT expecting was to leave before the third act because I could just not take the awfulness anymore. That skit that Millie puts on about how drinking is not cool in the Freaks & Geeks cafeteria? Better than what I saw last night. And apparently it was just me because the drunk Midwesterners who surrounded me ATE IT UP WITH A SPOON, the skit with the girl singing a song about Chicago club girls (“they’ll give you a blow job for a free drink”. Clever), the skeezy Italian guy trying to sell a Sopranos-esque health insurance policy (complete with gold chain, red sunglasses and shirt wide open- oh yes. Apparently, it’s 1985 again.), the fart jokes, FART JOKES…

I could go on about it but I’m honestly so depressed that THIS is where the best & brightest of our future comedy stars are heading that I just want to talk about something good before my head explodes. (Also the fact that the tickets were TWENTY DOLLARS EACH I WANT MY MONEY BACK). Cough-hack-cough.

Top Five Comedies to Watch Now Before It’s Too Late

5. Better Off Ted (2009 – Present)- Currently on Hiatus- ABC

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My favorite new show of the last year, Better Off Ted introduced us to the slightly off-beat world that exists within global corporation Veridian Dynamics. It’s a brilliant setting for a comedy that’s willing to zing off into bizarre directions, since VD (I’m sure that’s not a coincidence) is always working to create the newest must-have product, be it bullet-proof dinnerware or an untested “energy patch” that sends an unwitting colleague into La La Land. Narrator Ted is bland but a good, steady foil for the nuttiness around him, the lab guys are perfect, awkward and brimming with nerd-love for both their work and each other, the perky love interest is made interesting by being just a LITTLE too crazy in an all-too-believable way and, of course, Portia DeRossi as Veronica. She’s kind of like a young, hot Mr. Burns if Mr. Burns ever dumps the power plant and sets up shop in corporate.

4. New Adventures of Old Christine (2006 – Present)- Wednesdays on CBS

THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE

Of all the networks, CBS is the channel that has so stringently clung to the old-fashioned sitcom format (Two & A Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother) while other networks drift toward striking comedy gold in newfangled formats like mockumentaries (NBC), high-concept (ABC) and cartoons created by Seth McFarlane (FOX). And while any of the CBS comedies will do in a pinch when you’re looking for a little laugh-track comfort (all except Two & A Half Men which is basically unwatchable), it’s Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ Christine that’s the most underrated.  The writing is great, they don’t rely on the cuteness of little Ritchie at all to win scenes, and honestly, even without Julia, the supporting cast (Wanda Sykes, Hamish Linklater, and the guy from S.H.I.E.L.D.) could stand on its own just fine.

But really, you’ve got to watch it for Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Her manic energy, her endless hang-ups and neurosis, the way she absolutely crushes every scene and every line in it. She’s always been a pro but her work here proves that she’s undoubtedly the best sitcom actor at work right now and that you need her in your life. Just watch her flop around in her airplane seat before takeoff, cranky for a glass of red wine (“Ma’am, we haven’t even closed the door yet), all but incapable of getting through the day as a functional adult. Comedy heaven.

3. 30 Rock (2006 – Present)- Thursdays on NBC

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It’s been tough for 30 Rock to stay consistent and it’s not all their fault. The first two seasons were so knock-out perfect and yet, despite all the award wins and critical love, the show still flounders in the ratings. So sure, they started relying on heavy-hitters Alec Baldwin, Kenneth the Page and Tracy Morgan, all but staying out of the writer’s room for the last season and tossing in A-List guest stars whenever possible (Jennifer Aniston! Salma Hayek! Steve Martin! Alan Alda! OPRAH!).

Now that the show has nabbed its third-straight Emmy for Best Comedy Series, maybe we can get back to business. Because the best of 30 Rock rests on Liz Lemon’s buckling shoulders as she tries to get her variety show out there every Friday night, despite the legitimately insane talent around her (Tracy & Jenna), the idiots (Kenneth, the writers) who launch milkshakes and fax machines at her and the meddling of her overwhelmingly Alpha Male corporate honcho boss/unlikely best friend Jack Donaghy.

2. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2005 – Present)- Thursdays on FX

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For a while, I was worried about Sunny. How could a show so perverse, so dark and unwieldy  survive after we become so used to it? Will it still be as funny when it fails to shock us (accustomed as we are to not only the gang’s absolutely reprehensible moral code but also Charlie’s inability to read, Dee’s willingness to have sex with anybody, even an ancient Korean man for a microbrew recipe, Dennis’ extreme vanity and Mac’s delusion that he’s a macho tough guy).

If last night’s intervention episode is any indication- YUP. Still BLINDINGLY funny. Danny DeVito’s hacking on the sidewalk as he guzzles wine from a soda can, his hair all standing up, as he gets ready to nail a recent widow is funny in itself but it’s Mac’s reaction that just killed me. That’s why the show works- as AWFUL as they all are (at first, the cast was compared to Seinfeld’s but Jerry & Company would run in the other direction if they ever stumbled into Paddy’s Bar), they’re all deluded enough to believe they’re good guys, thus they get to act horrified by each other, superior to each other. It just works so well and you don’t even have to cringe because they always get their comeuppance and it’s always so so good.

1. The Office (2005 – Present)- Thursdays on NBC

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While The Office isn’t really as good as it used to be, it’s still miles ahead of the competition, thanks to its supporting players. Carell, Fisher, Wilson and Krasinski are all fine and good but, for me, the best of the show remains with Phyllis, Kevin, Angela, Oscar, Andy, Kelly, Ryan, Stanley, Meredith and Creed. Without them, the show could get weighed down by Michael Scott’s gaffes, Dwight’s not-so-shocking-anymore one-liners, and Pam and Jim’s adorable smugness. Just think of last season’s fire drill and Angela throwing her cat into the ceiling and try not to laugh. Or the dance party episode as Kelly gets down. ANYTHING Meredith says and the immediate horrified expression on the person next to her. Creed’s serial-killer-like reveals to the camera. Stanley’s fits of rage and his deadpan, sour-faced indifference. Basically anything Andy says and does (thank you, Daily Show, for sending him to us and Carell too).

Adding to all that, The Office remains in spirit as close as it can to the heart of its British forefather, not shying away from truly dark, difficult moments, crushingly sad realities or letting anyone forget that none of these guys (not even impish Jim) is perfect in the least. It’s still the smartest, funniest show on TV right now. Limitless paper in a paperless world.

Best Newcomer: Community (2009)

Best Recently Departed: Samantha Who? (Canceled 2009)

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by Judi

When it comes to TV-related birthday presents, this one was up there- last night I got to introduce a friend to It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

The time Charlie thought he had cancer, Mac whining over not being invited to the prom, Dennis being egged while straddling a fence in the middle of an abortion rally… it was like seeing it all for the first time.

Happy Birthday to me INDEED.

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by Beal

Be it a diner, restaurant, coffee shop or bar, the haunts and hangouts of TV characters can become as legendary as the characters that patronize them. These fictional hangouts are places we wish existed, where we could spend our leisure time chatting wittily with our friend group, which may or may not be comprised of six different but zany archetypes. The following amazing make-believe haunts are celebrated not only for their prominent position in pop culture but also because having just ONE place for the gang to hang out, saves a bundle on sets.

5. Paddy’s Pub – Always Sunny in Philadelphia

img_4318So Paddy’s might have been voted the “worst bar in Philadelphia” but that won’t prevent it from making my list, in fact it’s only a boon to it’s greatness as far as I’m concerned. This place is a real dive, if I’m going to be nice about it, dump if I’m not. Somehow Mac, Dennis, Charlie and Frank manage to run this joint, of course with the help of bartender/waitress/drunk girl Sweet D. Seriously, I’m dying to hang out here. The clientele is a mixed bag–shady Asian gambling addicts, mildly retarded white rappers, minors, hobos, dead people, theater enthusiasts, you name it, at some point, each and every kind of person has thrown back a couple at Paddy’s and/or  been fucked over by some scheme that began inside its walls . Plus, they’ve got a pool table.

4. Monk’s “The Coffee Shop” – Seinfeld

6a00d83451be5969e200e54f4bb3c68834-640wiYou will find no patrons so loyal to an unremarkable diner as Jerry, George, Elaine and Kramer are to Monk’s aka “The Coffee Shop.” This allegiant foursome has arguably the world’s largest selection of restaurants to patronize, yet time and time again you’ll find them eating the same boring sandwiches and sipping coffee in their usual booth. Sure, sometimes they venture out for “fat free” yogurt or some Nazi-made soup, or occasionally to Monk’s “bizarro” competitor Reggie’s, but not very often because “they don’t have the big salad.” And they’ve had their fair share of issues at Monk’s, from the big-breasted waitress fiasco to George’s ongoing hate relationship with the cranky cashier. Mostly I just liked the dialogue.

3. Central Perk – Friends

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How could I not mention Central Perk? First and foremost, it’s a terrific pun, and who doesn’t love a pun? I’m pretty sure this place is partially responsible for the over saturation of coffee houses throughout America. Everyone loves the idea of sipping lattes from brightly colored jumbo mugs while relaxing on a plush davenport and enjoying an intellectual conversation or some light reading or perhaps one of Phoebe’s latest songs. And we all imagine ourselves doing this in a lovely Mom and Pop shop, just like Central Perk, located conveniently on the ground level of our insanely spacious apartment building. Unfortunately, all we have are Starbucks, and if at any time I noticed a six-pack of really attractive friends exchanging hilarious one-liners inside the Starbucks, I would have to assume my coffee had been laced with a mind altering substance.

And a tip of the hat to barista Gunther, who, with the smallest part ever, still manages to have the largest “supporting” role on Friends.

2. Phil’s – Murphy Brown

Phil's Bar - Murphy BrownEven though the show begins with Murphy’s release from the Betty Ford Clinic, it’s no reason to stop going to the bar. Or is it? Phil’s, which is located directly across the street from the FYI studio, provides a perfect respite for the news team. Whether it be for some pub food or a mid-afternoon highball, Phil’s is your place. And Phil is your man! Played by Pat Corley, Phil was always dispensing sound advice for Murphy and the gang. Phil’s was sort of like the last refuge for olden time stereotype journalists–a dark bar where trench coat/fedora hat clad investigative reporters could sip whiskey and crank cigarettes, hoping to overhear some political gossip, which actually was somewhat likely in Phil’s, being that it was (I think) located on K Street in downtown Washington. Midway through the series Phil dies and when his wife, Phyllis and children (who are also named some version of Phil) decide they must sell the bar, the news team bands together and buys it. All of them have ideas about how to improve it (personalize it) but in the end decide to keep it the same including the running gag “CLOSE THE DOOR” when even an ounce of sunlight pours in, which makes sense. No one wants to be reminded that they’re shitcanned in the middle of the afternoon.

1. Arnold’s – Happy Days

Arnold's Drive In - Happy DaysNo 70’s show about the 50’s would be complete without a Drive-In for the hip teens, with their Rock & Roll, and, and poodle skirts and their issues with authority to hang in out at. Enter Arnold’s, the number one TV hangout, according to me. Arnold’s was run by Al Delvecchio and was frequented by Richie, Joanie, Chachi, Ralph Malph, Potsie and the Fonz,. Seriously, it’s the only public place they ever went. I love it though, because without it, we may have never have seen the Fonz rip his leather jacket off and punch out a couple of rabble rousers and we DEFINITELY wouldn’t have seen him single-handedly (athankyou) “fix” the jukebox. Arnold’s was further ingrained into pop culture when Weezer used it as the setting for their 1994 music video, Buddy Holly. Roll clips. . .

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by Judi

As a kid, I loved September because I was a giant nerd who enjoyed shopping for school supplies. As an adult, September is really all about television and thus, a reason to celebrate. What shows (both new and returning) am I most looking forward to? I’m so GLAD you ASKED.*

Glee (New)

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When: September 2 on FOX

Why: Because I loved Nip/Tuck before it got way too weird. Because Jane Lynch is in it. Because teacher Will Schuester is seriously cute. And it’s about outcast kids who SING. As we’ve established, I kind of love that a lot.

Community (New)NUP_134878_0426

When: September 17 on NBC

Why: JOEL MCHALE. The promos have actually been amusing (which is nice for a change). Chevy Chase looks like he’s doing his best Lovahs impression but mostly for Joel McHale, whom I would walk through a California fire to see.

Bones (Returning)bones

When: September 17 on FOX

Why: Honestly… I don’t know. I was seriously irritated by the season finale but…argh… I just…I can’t… I’m willing to give Season 5 a chance to redeem itself. Let’s leave it at that. (Plus, the BBC just canceled Robin Hood and I’m so happy about that, that I’m willing to be charitable.)

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Returning)

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When: September 17 on FX

Why: Doesn’t it feel like forever ago since we’ve seen Dennis, Mac, Charlie, Dee and Frank? I started seeing previews for the new season a few weeks ago and cannot even begin to describe my joy and excitement. Just that one image of Charlie and the cat with the red mittens set me up for the rest of the month. Can’t wait.

How I Met Your Mother (Returning)

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When: September 21 on CBS

Why: I probably would never have started watch HIMYM if it weren’t for sweet, glorious Lifetime. I have an automatic aversion to CBS comedies (hearing that everyone’s dad likes “The Big Bang Theory” is not enough of an incentive to actually watch the show. And I’ve seen “Two and a Half Men” and all I have to say is, “Really? THIS is the biggest sitcom in America?”). Mother, however, while not being all-out funny is actually really enjoyable to watch. The characters are just quirky enough to be endearing and the situations actually ring true for a 20/30 something group of friends. Plus, Neil Patrick Harris is in it and apparently you didn’t get the memo that we have to see him in EVERYTHING these days.

Modern Family (New)

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When: September 23 on ABC

Why: The up-close previews at my local movie theater actually made me chuckle. And while I’m pretty sure I’ll watch this show once and then completely forget it exists, I’m still excited to see that first episode. Plus that girl from Ed and Lost (and Happy Madison!) is in it.

* Harry Connick Jr. was seriously underrated on Will and Grace. Just saying.

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In the grand tradition of weekend sitcoms (“Saved By The Bell”, my personal favorite “California Dreams”, “City Guys”, “One World”- oh, my God “One World” was so, so bad) I give you “Grounded for Life,” which actually used to be on primetime, I have no idea where or when, but now pretty much only exists on the Family Channel on my weekends.3746

Completely underrated and pretty ballsy for a family sitcom. Claudia and Sean, who own the world’s crappiest Irish pub (still not as dirtbag crappy as Paddy’s but just as not-successful) got pregnant in high school and have three kids- Lily, who is pretty much the horniest sitcom teenage girl ever in existence and flaunts her rebellions (the usual- piercings, tattoos, some anger management issues) and her sex life in front of her parents in a way that makes her oddly not that slutty but highly amusing. Son Jimmy, clearly destined for years of pot and basement time, that’s a given, and Henry who’s completely normal and thus not often in the show. So thanks for that.
Not to mention Kevin Corrigan as Uncle Eddie (who you probably know as the angry dude in “Superbad” who threatens Jonah Hill when he dances with his menstrual girlfriend but who will forever be in my heart as Eliott in “Slums of Beverly Hills”) and “The Reaper” Bret Harrison is Lily’s idiot boyfriend Brad. Once upon a time I wished for a world where Bret Harrison was in pretty much everything and, thanks, I got my wish but nothing could top his role in “The Loop” which was an AMAZING show and, again, I’m pretty sure I am the only person who has ever it. Check it out here because it’s Sunday and on Sunday you should do as you’re told.

Watch Grounded for Life.

– Judi

 

Great weekend show for sure. As for Uncle Eddie though, I can’t think of him as anyone but Millie’s cousin who makes fake ID’s for Lindsay and friends so they can go see Feedback, which turns out to be Mr. Rosso’s band. 

–BEAL

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