Thursday, November 22, 2012

Fall TV 2012

I haven't picked up too many new shows this season, and I've already dropped a couple that I started.

1. The Failures
I watched the first episode of Partners. It was eh. I like the actors, but it just wasn't fresh enough. Also tried The New Normal, and got a few weeks into that one. But I got tired of the "issue of the week" preaching. I don't watch sitcoms to have a message pounded into my head, especially one ("everyone has valid points, even, or especially, if they don't think the way you do") that I already hold. We tried Last Resort, which had potential but would get kind of weird at odd moments. We watched 2 episodes of that, I think, and had 4 or 5 recorded when we heard they'd canceled it. So I dropped that off our season pass.

We also dropped The Mentalist this year. Bored. Tired of Red John. The end of last season was compelling, but what we loved best about Patrick Jane in early seasons was gone. We've had conflicts timing-wise with other shows, so we just deleted it.

2. The Successes
Arrow has to top the list. It's not super-fantastic, but somehow, it's the show that I think about most during the week. I love the potential I see in it, for all the people around him to join his crusade. I do want it to expand beyond the list in his book, which it seems like it's already doing. Flashbacks have been all the rage since Lost, but these are intriguing. I want to know how he got the way he is, especially from such a ridiculously opposite extreme.

I'm also enjoying Revolution. Number Two is loving it, too. It's her replacement for Terra Nova. :) Charlie's forehead does a lot of independent acting, but either I'm getting used to it, or she's getting a little more subtle. It's not her fault, really, that she has fifty more muscles in that section of her face than the rest of us do. :) Billy Burke has been a revelation for me. I wasn't excited to hear about his casting, but he's been tremendous as Miles. And if I hadn't already been hooked, they'd have had me with Colin Ford a couple of weeks ago, as the second-in-command to a group of kids left on their own after the militia murdered all their parents. Yes, this is a dark show.

So it's good that Go On is not! I mean, yeah, it's about a guy whose wife died, who's so depressed he was forced to join a support group, but it's FUNNY! I think the cast has good chemistry, and the characters are just quirky enough to keep us entertained without being silly or unreal. You've got to love Matthew Perry, of course, to love the show, and luckily, I do. :)

The other new show I just picked up is Wedding Band on TBS. Gabe Tigerman, who played Andy on Supernatural, had tweeted that his wife is in the show. I have a soft spot for him after he sat with us for hours in the hotel bar at the first NJ Salute to Supernatural convention, and as an author seeking an audience, I get how hard it is for a show like that to get a toehold. Still, I didn't get serious about watching it until I saw that Brian Austin Green was the lead. Yeah, there's nostalgia for my young adult days with Beverly Hills 90210, but really, I fell for BAG when he was on The Sarah Connor Chronicles. His character is MUCH different, which makes me sad (I miss the moody, intense man of action), but I enjoyed the pilot and think it's a keeper.

3. The Rest
So many returning shows! I won't blah blah blah about all of them. The older ones I'm routinely enjoying, if not dying to get to every week, are How I Met Your Mother, Bones, Hawaii 5-O, New Girl, Fringe, Glee, Covert Affairs, Once Upon a Time and Big Bang Theory. Nothing revelatory in any of those.

Revenge isn't quite as tight and satisfying as last season, but my boss and I are still eager to discuss it every week. It's fun to try to figure out motivations, and I'm enjoying Emily's new softness, her recognition that she can be merciful and compassionate. Of course, then she makes a guy confess to murder and go to jail, but no one changes overnight.

Haven is probably my most compelling show right now. The ticking clock has definitely upped the suspense. The look on Nathan's face every time Audrey touches him still kills me—but I admit, with not a small amount of guilt, that Duke's "friendship" with her has me by the throat. Gotta love a delicious love triangle. I like Jordan (but not too much) and the shrink (love her!), too. Nice to have some balance, gender-wise.

Nikita and Castle top my list, too. They've twisted everything up and made it fresh, which means both are still very compelling. On Nikita, the turnaround on Division has given them some new kinds of cases and new relationships, while on Castle, having Rick and Kate together has been fantastic. It's so awesome to see her *happy*, and him in love. And the secondary cast is as great as always. 

Then there's Supernatural, of course. I'm on the fence about it. There's a lot that I love—Cas, Benny, Mrs. Tran, Crowley, Garth, the Big New Goal—but I'm disappointed in the writers for slapping on a conflict that makes no sense, just to keep "tension" between the brothers. Having them acting out of character to give them something to be mad about is SOOOOOOOOOOOO tedious compared to previous seasons' tension due to their deep, disastrous brotherly love and mutual drive to save the world. After 7 years, can't they just be brothers? Can't they start to heal?

We're on Doctor Who hiatus, but I thought they did a fantastic job with Rory and Amy's exit, as much as it broke my heart. I LOVED the actress/character from the season opener, so I'm sure I'll love the new companion, too, even though she's a different character. I don't know if the big storyline that they've only teased will be as huge and fantastic as in the previous two seasons, but it's got me hooked.

I'm probably forgetting something somewhere. What shows are top of your list this season?


MJFredrick said...

I love it when you talk TV!

LOVE: Arrow, Haven (what a love triangle!), Vampire Diaries

Really enjoy: Chicago Fire (and not just because Mason from Vampire Diaries is on), Revenge, Hawaii 5-0, Castle (I think this is the best season for 5-0 and Castle), Hart of Dixie, Last Resort (heard it was canceled though), Don't Trust the B-- in Apt. 23, Modern Family

Dropped: 666 Park Avenue, Glee

Ready to drop: HIMYM, American Horror Story (though my husband loves it.), Grey's

Fine with them sitting on the TiVo awhile: Scandal, The New Normal, Revolution and Nashville, The Middle (we think they have new writers), Happy Endings

MJFredrick said...

Forgot Once Upon a Time! Really like that one too.

MJFredrick said...

Yeesh, completely forgot Walking Dead, another love, though I mostly watch through my fingers. SPN is one that can stay on the TiVo awhile, though I just bought last season on DVD.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

I'd considered Chicago Fire, which is doing surprisingly well, but I think I read that one of the main storylines in the pilot dealt with alcoholism, and there was the death of a fighter, and that sounded like it was starting as a downer. Discouraged me from trying it.

Nashville looks good, too, but I hate country music, so... LOL

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Oh, and The Walking Dead. I watched the first season and enjoyed it okay, but didn't feel compelled to watch after that. I'm enjoying reading about it, though. :)

MJFredrick said...

Chicago Fire has a drug addiction problem, and I don't really understand why he won't just go to the doctor. I missed the first couple of episodes, so missed the death but I'm really loving the bad cop storyline. As for Walking Dead, I think this is the best season yet. Certainly has the highest zombie body count, lol!