September 30, 2005

Fall TV

I've been meaning to write something about this fall's TV lineup, but it always seems like a daunting task. After years of feeling kind of underwhelmed by the offerings on the small screen, with a few notable exceptions, I discovered some old shows I never saw. Then I started paying more attention and I happy to say there's a lot of good stuff going on out there. And on network TV even, I don't have HBO. If I did I would never find time to do anything else.

The good:

Everybody Hates Chris
It's a rather simple show, and it doesn't take on any great issues, but damn is it well written. And it's wholesome too.

The Simpsons
Damn this has been on a long time. I remember being excited, in middle school, when our local independent station (remember those) was joining FOX. We were going to get THE SIMPSONS!!

I feel like it's started off a bit slow, but that thought occurred to me while watching the second episode immediately after watching the Veronica Mars premier, which was jam-packed.

Veronica Mars
It was cool to read on Rob Thomas's site that the first season of Veronica Mars was based on a YA mystery novel he pitched. I think the second season is off to a great start.

Arrested Development
I can't say enough good things about this show, although the second episode was kind of wacky. Either they're trying new things, or I was thrown off by the change in the intro and expected weirdness.

The promising:

The West Wing
I watched this early on, then forgot about it for years, then caught the last half of last season. It doesn't seem to have changed a whole lot, even if the characters' jobs have changed.

Kitchen Confidential
I only watched the pilot because my girlfriend is in cooking school, and it kind of looked like her life right now. I thought it was decent, though the characters aren't very well defined, and the women all have shitty sexist roles (apparently some critic said the same thing.. I could be a critic!). Then I watched the pilot for How I Met Your Mother (below) and I was reminded how bad TV can be, so KC gets a tentative thumbs-up. When I run out of time and have to cut a show, this might go first.

One of many shows featuring actors from wonderful former shows. This isn't at the top of my list, but I'll give it a shot.

My Name Is Earl
It feels a lot like a little 22-minute indie movie, and Jason Lee is great. I think it has a lot of potential.

The Office
I thought it was sacrilege to remake the original The Office, and I watched the pilot and was disgusted to see that it was almost exactly the same as the original! So I didn't watch it again until this season's premier and, well, it's good. And it's they're own thing. And Ricky Gervais approves, so it deserves a chance.

The bad:

How I Met Your Mother
Oh man. A laugh track? Haven't we learned our lessons? I guess not, considering all the awards Everybody Loves Raymond just won. The only reasons I watched this were to see folks from Buffy, Freaks and Geeks, and Doogie Howser. They should have stayed at home. They must need the money.

It's exciting to see so many alumni of Buffy and Freaks and Geeks back on TV. I wish them luck!

Posted at September 30, 2005 06:23 PM, Categories: Beardcore
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