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Archive for the ‘Lost’ Category

So. There’s good news and there’s bad news. The GOOD news is that there are some fantastical, magical, should-be-riding-on-unicorns shows on television in 2010. Some of those babies are so adored and beloved that their safety is secure. The bad news is that because of your neglect (yes, you. It’s your fault. I have a TV blog, I watch enough to cause social services to take my kids away.) some of them may very well be canceled before 2010 is out.

Fact: Earthquakes suck. FACT: Being financially stable enough to help people is awesome. Fact: Good TV can be saved too. Let’s do this.

5.  Better Off Ted (Tuedays 8:30/7:30pm, ABC)


Ah, yes. My panicked warbling about ABC’s (dare I say it?) quirkiest show continues. Great, snug writing, fantastically weird and likable characters, a setting that is just bursting with possible story ideas, Better Off Ted is a dream of a workplace comedy, capable of cheerfully zinging the ridiculousness of massive conglomerates in the same beat that a crazily-coiffed magician named Mordor the Unforgivable gets shot with a harpoon gun. Even this show on its worst day is far-and-away better than the middling sitcom fare you’ll find on CBS these days. At least tell Charlie Sheen to take a hike for God’s sake. Clear up some programming time for Ted instead (see what I did there? Classic Lemon).

4. Parks and Recreation (Thursdays 8:30/7:30pm, NBC)

One of the all-time best turnaround stories for a network comedy. When Parks and Rec first aired last year, I made it through two episodes before I had to stop watching. Despite my love for Amy Poehler, watching her grating, Tracy Flick-esque Leslie Knope stumble, crash and burn amongst coworkers and townspeople who seemed to despise her was too much for me. (That episode where she’s flagellated in a town hall meeting in front of her mother? Just painful.) And then… and then someone (probably Beal) told me to take another look at the show when season 2 came around. So I did. A few weeks back, I sat down and caught up on Parks and Rec. And then I proceeded to watch every episode back to back in the span of three days.

What’s different? Leslie Knope is now completely lovable. Sure, she’s still got her high-falutin’ ambitions but it’s tempered with a lot more self-awareness, a healthy dose of idealism and hard work. Instead of her begging for Anne’s friendship, you can tell Anne adores her. And Louis C. K as her boyfriend-cop? Adorable. The episode with Megan Mulally as a slutty, malicious bureaucrat for the library? Fantastic. And that damned Christmas episode made me tear up.

3. Friday Night Lights (Fridays 8:00/7:00pm, NBC)


Here’s how good this show is and I swear, sometimes I feel like I’m talking to a wall when I bring it up. My dad, holed up for weeks after surgery, got the first season of FNL thanks to his third and doting daughter’s recommendation. Cut to three weeks later. My mother, who is incapable of staying up past ten minutes of any show (something about the lull of the voices, the softness of the couch? Or maybe the fact that she gets up at 5am every day) is rabidly asking me when the show is coming back on NBC (DirectTV has shouldered the production costs with NBC, so it gets the new episodes first. I love you, DirectTV). My dad reports that she is obsessed. He even caught her sneaking upstairs to watch an episode while he napped and rested. When I brought up the scene where Smash learns he’s going to college, she choked up. And my father is just as hooked.

Returns to NBC on April 30th. Rent the first three seasons on Netflix. Email me a nice thank-you card when you’re done.

2. Lost (Tuesdays 8:00/7:00pm, ABC)


If you’ve been watching this show, then I don’t need to convince you to do anything. You’ll watch. You might shake your fist at Obama’s State of the Union if it pre-empts it too. Lost for us TV geeks is the very definition of appointment television (and there is far too little appointment television these days.)

For those of you who haven’t watched it- look, don’t be turned off by the “mysteries” and the “clues” and the “LEXICON.” It’s a show. A damned good show. The acting is good, the twists are great and when Lost is good? It’s very, very, very good. I could personally give a damn about what the polar bear symbolizes. To me, this is a twisted, funky show about a whacked out, magical island and the very flawed people stuck on it. The end. Watch it because it’s fun. And because I think this whole plan to map out the story and end it this year was a brilliant one (and something serial dramas should always do. Hello, shows-that-spin-out-of-control-toward-the-end-because-they-have-no-direction! Yes, Alias. I am talking to you.)

This is a big year for Lost. The last season. And there’s still time! Hole up for a few weekends, catch up and don’t get bogged down in all the extra stuff.

Returns to ABC on February 2nd.

1. The Tonight Show with CONAN O’BRIEN (Mon-Fri 11:30/10:30, NBC)

I have seen every single episode of Conan O’Brien’s Tonight Show, which would be a laudable feat if it had lasted the usual tenure of 10-15 years on air. It looks as if Coco’s run, however, will be capped at a measly 7 months. Catch up on the whole story here, just in case you’ve been on Mars for the last week and missed it.

I’ve tweeted and Facebooked and languished over every bit of news and every awkward and hilarious and awful and painful late night segment about the debacle since it all started with Heir Zucker’s announcement to move Jay Leno back to 11:30pm. I am, quite frankly, too sick at heart to talk about it for much longer. Suffice it to say, my perspective of the situation is merely one of a devoted fan. Like so many others, I’ve been watching Conan O’Brien for years and years, for so long that when he saw his dream of hosting The Tonight Show realized, I was beyond thrilled for him. He’s talented, he’s paid his dues and he deserved it. To see it taken from him just hurts.

I don’t care to dissect the reasons or the secret reasons behind the lineup changes or why we hate Jay and love Conan and what it means for comedy and for NBC. It’s all been said to death. Suffice it to say, Conan did not have enough time to secure his legacy with The Tonight Show or to prove himself in the ratings. We’ll miss him and we hurt for him. And wherever he goes, we’ll go. Simple as that.

The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien could very well end on Friday Jan. 22nd. Watch it until the fat lady sings or I will stab you in the face.

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by Judi

I’m going to start with this- casting is right up there on the list of Things In Hollywood That We Take For Granted. It’s kind of like the CIA- when everything’s working as it should, you don’t hear anything about it (case in point- casting, while being a HUGE portion of the entertainment industry, is not an available category for the Emmy’s or Oscars or any Hollywood award). The only time you hear about it is when something goes horribly awry. And I’m not just saying this because I happen to know a pretty amazing casting director in real life (Hi Beth! Ahem). Sadly, for every perfectly cast ensemble (Seinfeld, Mulder & Scully, Arrested Development) there is at least one bona-fide head scratcher, a casting decision that makes you wonder if this person had some blackmail photos in their pocket when they went to the audition.

Welcome to When Things Go Awry.

5. Jonathan Rhys-Meyers as Henry VIII on The Tudors (2007- Present)

Perv Who Enjoys Chicken

Perv Who Enjoys Chicken

Sexy Times McGee

Sexy Times McGee

This one is pretty obvious, essentially because we know that Henry VIII was a fat, pervy bastard. And while Rhys-Meyers gets a point for being a bastard, may I remind you that it isn’t pervy behavior if the guy is sexually attractive. “Perviness”, along with its slightly incestous cousin “The Ick”, is directly proportional to how revolting you find the person (consider Chris Rock’s take on the matter- “If Clarence Thomas looked like Denzel, this never would’ve happened.”) and so Showtime’s decision to give British history the “old Showtime treatment”, short of hiring the wretched Diablo Cody to write the thing, is nothing short of ridiculous.

He’s also kind of a terrible actor. There, I said it. I hope my Bend It Like Beckham DVD didn’t just burst into flames or anything…

4. Jennifer Love Hewitt as Melinda Gordon on Ghost Whisperer (2005- Present)

Jennifer Love Hewitt has always made me laugh. Not in like “She’s the original Tina Fey” way or anything. More like, she was the theater kid I used to laugh at even though I was a bigger loser than she was. Things have not changed much in our respective hierarchy but she still makes me laugh. She’s just so earnest, trying to come off  as vulnerable, whether it’s to husband Jim or Bailey, with her big hair and her big boobs getting all in the way. I guess casting her in a ghost drama on CBS makes sense (it is CBS after all, not exactly a stable of our finest actors.) but this show would be so much better if Melinda Gordon was played by someone who didn’t crack me up for all the wrong reasons. And for God’s sake, can we dress her APPROPRIATELY for once? Why is she always running around in sundresses in the middle of winter? But that’s a topic for another Friday…

This show really is just a Lifetime movie that’s lasted for four years, isn’t it?

3. Michael Stoyanov as Tony Russo on Blossom (1991-1995)

2835Right off the bat, Tony Russo is a strange choice for a sitcom character, being a recovering alcoholic and all in The House That Quirk Built. Add Six and Joey’s “WHOA!” and Dad’s piano-playing and we’re left to wonder what we’re supposed to make of Tony exactly. Michael Stoyanov, though well-meaning, seems confused about this as well and I think he might be wondering what he’s doing cast as Joey Lawrence’s serious older brother when he could be doing Off-Broadway somewhere.

2. Daphne Reid as Vivian Banks on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air (1993-1996)

Here’s an interesting decision. Take a character on a hit sitcom and cast a hilarious actress in the role. Then, after three years, recast the smart, feisty actress with the comedic equivalent of a modern-day, rich June Cleaver. While I love June Cleaver as much as the next person, I do not want to watch her partake in zany antics or, worse, sit on the sidelines like a piece of melba toast while everyone else has all the fun.

Let’s go to the video tape.

1. Evangeline Lily as Kate on Lost (2004- Present)

Evangeline Lilly Biography

On paper, Kate is a fantastic character. She comes from a broken home, she killed her abusive stepfather by BLOWING UP THEIR HOUSE and then went on the lam, ends up on a tropical island and becomes a kind of GI Jane of the Jungle, surviving capture and getting rescued and losing her kid and TIME TRAVEL and a romantic triangle to boot.

Which is why Evangeline Lily brings me so much pain. I want to like Kate so much but from the very first episode, Lily was just wrong for the role. I mean, she’s certainly pretty (no one is disputing that) but, in Kate, I wanted more than just “pretty” and “freckles.” This character needed grit and Evangeline Lily has about as much grit as overcooked oatmeal. What makes this all the more evident are the well-cast roles of Sun and Juliette, who managed to actually elevate their characters into something else entirely, something infinitely more interested than what was written. As opposed to Lily, who just seems to be holding on for dear life.

Watch clip.

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by Judi

Thanks a lot, NBC, for providing me with a promising new show with a name that I have to spell-check twenty-seven times.

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I’ll confess that I’m mainly checking out this drama at 10/9C (given a surprisingly positive review from Entertainment Weekly) because Neve Campbell is in it and I have a bizarre sentimental investment in all of the former Salinger children‘s careers. I applaud you, Gretchen Weiners. I’m happy for you, Jack Shephard (even though I find you a little bit insufferable). I  cheered you, Scott Wolf, when you were not terrible in Saturday Night Live (oh my God, that was in 1998) and it seems you’ve got a role in the new pilot V, I’ll probably watch that too. I wonder what baby Owen’s been up to?

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the_unusuals-show

Hmmmm. I don’t know about this.

First of all, The AV Club was right in their assessment that the previews for The Unusuals are a bit misleading- the new ABC show is more streamlined cop-drama than it pretended to be. I guess they have to play up the weird to snag the lead-in Lost audience, the people who don’t immediately run to the Interweb to get down their notes on what conspiracies are taking place this week (am I the only Lost viewer who changes the channel after an episode, sated and ready to move on to the next thing? Life is too short to ponder over every word Benjamin Linus says. I say, as I sit here writing on a website dedicated to TV minutae. Shut up.)

Anyway, here’s the review in brief.

Mystery surrounding crooked cop who’s now dead: All right, I’ll play along for a while. I guess.

Super cryptic sergeant who tells his new detective (Amber Tamblyn) that he moved her into his precinct because there’s fishy business going on and as an uber-rich socialite’s daughter, she’s unbribeable: Mildly interesting. Except his cheesy cliches, “the truth is out there” or some bullshit, is laughable.

Eddie is dying and apparently can’t die: I love Adam Goldberg. You were smart to give this to Adam Goldberg because otherwise there would’ve been a lot more scoffing involved.

Walsh owns a diner? I don’t care. I want more of this guy, he’s SUPER appealing.

Michael from Lost is paranoid because all the men in his family die at 42 and he’s 42 so he sleeps in a bulletproof vest: Straight-up dumb. Someone needs to tell him there are OTHER ways to kill a person besides a gun. Like poison. Or contrived plot exposition.

That guy with the mustache who talks about himself in the third-person: For a second, I thought I was watching a Reno 911 character. Props for the ‘stache though.

Conclusion:

How many TiVoed episodes before I commit to Season Pass: Three, looking for marked improvement.

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Thanks a lot for this new game we’re playing where you go in and out of reception. If you’re broken, just GO ALL THE WAY OUT, instead of this “it’s ok now- fuck, no, it just went to black- ok it’s back, settle in- nope, gone again- ok, wait, here- nope, gone- wow, gone for five minutes this time” game we’ve been playing for days now. Comcast, do you know what it’s like to devote yourself to a 12 hour Lord of The Rings marathon on TNT, only to have Return of the King play hopscotch with a black screen for four hours? I’ll tell you what it’s like- it’s ALMOST as frustrating as trying to piece together the last ten minutes of Lost, aka THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF LOST.

I really seriously wish you were dead. Actually, no. I wish that you were alive but on the brink of death and the doctor kept coming in to the room to say, “You’re not going to die.” And then again five minutes later with, “You’re going to die, pretty sure.” And then, “Nope, fine.” “Sorry about that, you ARE dying after all.” And have this go on for as long as I deem necessary, you merciless bastard.

I have no job, Comcast, no money and my dog has lost interest in me. TV is all I have and you’re fucking it up.

– Judi

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c2lost-kate-sawyer-jack_lOk, so last week I was reading the Lost feature in Entertainment Weekly and Evangeline Lilly says something to the tune of, “The audience really wants to see me end up with Jack” and I had one of those surreal, out-of-body experiences where I wondered if Morpheus had wandered into my apartment and spiked my coffee with a red pill. Or a blue pill. Possibly both at the same time for a Morpheus Mind-Bend Cocktail.

She goes on to say that her reasoning is that she and Jack have a lot of screen time together and in her experience, screen time equals who the audience wants to see end up together. Ok, by that logic, maybe Kate should just marry Aaron. That’s the most retarded thing I have ever heard.

Is there ANYONE who wants Kate to end up with Jack? Seriously, I want to know. I’m really actually curious about this. Did the majority of Lost viewers (who, admittedly, care about this sort of thing, aka have a vagina) who read this go, “Yes, that’s right. Evangeline is very much on the nose with regards to our needs and desires concerning the romantic direction of this program.”? Is that what happened? Someone please just tell me. I just want the truth. If that’s really the case, then I will shut up and go sulk in the corner with my Joey and Pacey dolls.

Last night was a perfect example as to why the Kate-and-Jack thing does not work. Let’s try the whole “I just lost my kid out of the blue and won’t tell you why or how” angle that IMMEDIATELY and out of NOWHERE turned into “let’s have sex.” I didn’t buy it at all. No woman who is so distraught that she’s practically Cameron-comatose on the bed suddenly has enough energy to engage in Help Me Forget Sex. And Jack totally goes for it, he looks psyched about it. It’s super irritating. Even Sawyer, Mr. Insensitivity, would’ve taken a step back, for like two seconds, and thought, “You MIGHT be a little too vulnerable for this” before quickly removing his pants. Jack didn’t even think twice about it. “Awesome, she wants to be my girlfriend again. In the morning, I’ll give her orange juice!” What are you, sixteen? Why don’t you just bake her some one-night stand cookies and I’ll just writhe around in agony AGAIN.

Jack sucks. He does, I’m sorry. He’s a “good guy” who is super whiny and complainy about his issues. That is not sexy. It does not make you a romantic lead. Look, you are a HOT DOCTOR. You’ve got bank and you’ve got Neve Campbell’s phone number- make it work. Oh, boo hoo your dad was an ass hat. You self-destruct every relationship you have, welcome to America. Let’s see, do I want the whiny doctor or the hot con man who is only really noble or halfway decent when it comes to me? It’s such a dilemma.

I’m not usually so off on my story-direction instincts. I watch enough TV and movies that I generally have a good track record for guessing how things are going to go but when Lily said that, I had a total crisis of faith moment. Could I really be so off? Am I losing my touch? Pacey, hold me.

– Judi

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desmond_hume1

– Lost: Love that Desmond named his kid Charlie. That kid Faraday (Maggie Gyllenhaal’s fiance from Secretary, aka the the twitchiest actor EVER) is really starting to get on my nerves. I get it, brainy people are very nervous and stutter a lot but do you see how infuriating it is to watch this for a full hour? Also, I swear to God, Lost execs, if you do anything to Desmond and Penny I will, um, say something really nasty about you on the Interweb.

mariel_hemingway_farm_gala_2006

– Roseanne on Nickelodeon: God, I love the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” episode, even if Mariel Hemingway dances like a retarded chicken at the gay club. Also, was it really necessary to name the club Lips? It’s filled with lesbians, we get it. Why don’t you just name it “Vagina?”

– Wings: That episode where Brian almost marries that random, crazy lady in the airplane? Were you people on coke while writing that episode? First Antonio sighting, however, that was exciting. Also, this is the best Myspace profile EVER.

– I forgot to watch Fringe AGAIN. I guess that’s over.

high-school-musical-2-81

– High School Musical is filled with so many gay kids and why am I the only person disturbed that Ashley Tisdale wants to play the romantic lead in the school musical opposite her super gay brother? Also, thank you Netflix for not delivering my DVDs in clear plastic otherwise I would’ve been super embarrassed about putting HSM on the old queue. I think someone over there used to work for the porn mag industry…

– Burn Notice: Thanks for the new episode especially since FOX is trying to ruin my life by spacing new Bones episodes about three weeks apart (ARGH). You might want to retool a few things though. This show is not as good as it used to be (still way better than Psych though, sorry Dad.)

The one on Brett's right- her crotch is totally itching up a storm right now.

The one on Brett's right- her crotch is totally itching up a storm right now.

– It’s been three years and I still want Beal to audition for Rock of Love: Chlamydia Tour of Love.

-Judi

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