Friday, October 16, 2009

A few random teevee thoughts....

Just a few quick thoughts from some recent teevee viewing:

:: I understand why FOX had to do it, but geez, going from final three to the winner of Hell's Kitchen in a single two-hour episode really seems rushed to me. In the past, the final two have had a two-hour show (or a two-parter) to themselves. (FOX's scheduling bit the show in the arse -- FOX runs the Major League Baseball playoffs, which are going on now, so it was either wrap HK up faster than usual, or have it go away for three weeks and then have the finale later on. They opted for the former, and I don't blame them.)

:: The most recent episode of The Amazing Race had what had to be the most crushing defeat for a team in the show's history. A team (a guy and his friend or brother, can't recall which, who has Asperger's) reaches the Pit Stop first -- only to discover, minutes later, that they've lost one of their passports. This means they are no longer officially checked in, and have to go back onto the race course (which for this episode is in Cambodia) and look for the passport, find it, and then return to the Pit Stop. If they fail to get back before all other teams check in, they're eliminated. They didn't find the passport. Exit the team. Ouch.

(Oh, and so far, the show's roadblocks and detours haven't been as much fun as the more gonzo previous season, which had my two favorite tasks to date -- the hauling of giant cheeses and the Austrian beer-hall pie throwing.

:: I'm enjoying Grey's Anatomy as much as ever, although I do hope they introduce some new blood soon. The show's ratings appear to be sliding, though. I'm not sure why.

:: I loved Jim and Pam's wedding on The Office, but I wonder if the show isn't reaching something of a tipping point. One of the show's great strengths to me has been its believability, for the most part; it takes normal office dynamics and seemingly amps them up just a little, often for hilarious effect. Still, there have been moments in the show's history that stood out as too unbelievable to swallow, and I'm seeing a trend of more of that kind of thing going on. Specifically, I hope the writers address the problem inherent in having Jim being an office manager where his wife works as a subordinate. Every company I've ever worked for had rules against this type of situation. We'll see.

:: Thank God 30 Rock is back on, because that means there are two funny shows on NBC on Thursdays. Community and Parks and Recreation just don't amuse me in the slightest, I'm sorry to say.

:: I'm noticing that, in watching reruns of The Family Guy, which The Daughter enjoys for some reason, the only times I really laugh invariably involve either Stewie or the talking dog. That's it. Peter? Lois? The two older kids? They could vanish from the show. But Stewie and the talking dog really do amuse me with some of their antics and banter.

:: I still have yet to watch the first few episodes of House, Dollhouse, or Castle, which I hadn't even realized had started already. Oops. I also want to look forward to 24 this year, but the way last season got started so strongly and then petered out in the last quarter of the season gives me pause. But then I'll look into the eyes of FBI Agent Renee Walker again, and that'll be that.

:: I renew my wish that Patrick Jane, on The Mentalist, would be completely wrong some time. I'm starting to get a bit bored by the show's formula of unmasking the killer in Act IV, and then having Jane indicate that he figured it out way back in Act I. I also wish they'd quit having Jane be right at the expense of the wondrous-to-gaze-upon Agent Lisbon.

:: At The Store, some wonderfully benevolent soul has changed the teevees in our cafe from FOX News to the Food Network. That's always a fine development.


Lynn said...

You need to drop 24 and get addicted to Fringe instead. ;-)

I'm really enjoying Castle and I'm liking House better this year than I did last year. Not sure I'll even bother with Dollhouse this year.

Thee Earl of Obvious said...

Here is what I would have done for the season finale of The Office. 3 episode before the end I would have introduced a new character. An older man or woman (depending on who you could get for the role) who is hired because their pension is being revoked due to an audit which revealed they were 2 months shy of the required 25 years of service.

Michael hires this person in an act of self promoting benevolance to complete the 2 months. They have not worked since the 70's and the gags can revolve around their inability to adapt to the new world.

Then this person dies in the season finale. All attend the funeral which is on the same day as Jim and Pams wedding.

Dwight gets the service mixed up an starts the musical dance at the funeral instead of the wedding. At first there is shock and disgust but eventually the church joins in the dance as they realize this man lived a life worth celebrating.

So inspiring is this funeral that the wedding takes place at the cemetery instead of the church (because the minister at the church canceled their wedding for being late from the funeral).

Roger Owen Green said...

I think there are three new characters that will be on Grey's soon, a function of the merger. Additionally, they'll be beefing up the stories of some of the secondary characters, such as Arizona.

Tonio Kruger said...

I was one of the few people to watch the first season of Dollhouse all the way through and even I had trouble generating enthusiasm for watching the current season.

I'd like to think there's still life left in The Office because it makes me laugh more than any other show currently on TV--but we'll see.

And I must confess that the only reason I keep up with Parks and Recreation is the affection I've developed for the Rashida Jones character. I'd like to think the show will be worth my while but we'll see...

I have yet to watch an episode of Castle but I keep hearing good things about it. Then again I've heard it referred to as Bones II and I'm not all that happy with the last few seasons of Bones I.

Lynn said...

Huh! Bones II? That's extremely odd. The only similarity between the two shows is that they both involve crime solving. (Well, that and the "witty banter" between male and female characters which is pretty much standard for all fictional TV shows.

Kerry said...

I cried at the end of last week's "Amazing Race." I enjoyed their friendship throughout the show, as well as how polite they were to people and how they seemed to be truly enjoying themselves. I kept hoping for a producer-planned happy ending (so to speak) with the missing passport magically turning up in their bags or something. Nothing.