Fall TV 2015: What I’m Watching (Wednesday Edition)

My list of what I’m watching (and maybe watching) this Fall continues with my Wednesday schedule.

WEDNESDAYS

  • Arrow
  • Survivor
  • Empire
  • Modern Family
  • Black-ish
  • Nashville
  • You’re the Worst
  • Kingdom

So apparently a new TV season meant absolutely nothing to my Wednesdays, as I’m not adding a single new show. My Wednesday staples of Arrow and Survivor continue to mess with my 8 PM, as I decide from week to week which I want to watch first and the other later. Last winter’s incredibly addictive Empire is also back at it for a second season, of which I am so happy about it because it means new music every week for a little while! We’ll also see the return of MMA series Kingdom, a show I didn’t think I’d like when I first heard of it, but turned out to really enjoy.

On the comedy side, I still watch Modern Family, albeit later on in the week; it’s not as good as it used to be, but still fun to watch. Black-ish is another funny show on ABC I’m happy to see back for season two. A show you should definitely be watching though is You’re the Worst over on FXX; it’s sort of an anti-rom-com and just so HILARIOUS in how terrible (in the good way) these characters are.

And then there’s Nashville. There’s a lot of it that’s ridiculous. However, for some reason or another (mostly Connie Britton), I keep coming back year after year. It’s definitely a guilty pleasure. It’s not high on my must see list, meaning I’ll end up watching it during the weekend when I’ve got time.

Advertisements

Throwback Thursday: Pop Culture Things Turn 15

Last week, there was mention of the fact that Britney Spears’ song “Oops! I Did It Again” was released 15 years ago. The week before that, it was the 15th anniversary of *NSYNC’s record-breaking “No Strings Attached” album. Obviously, the news of these anniversaries made me feel old. After the news of the former, I had joked on Twitter that someone should just do an all-encompassing 15th anniversary post of (almost) all the things I had apparently loved as a kid and which now makes me feel old. LIGHTBULB! I might as well do it for the blog! So without further ado, here are some notable releases at the turn of the new millennium and turns 15 years old this year.

[Disclaimer: This obviously isn’t a fully comprehensive list of EVERYTHING that was released or debuted in 2000. It’s strictly the stuff I watched and listened to in the year 2000.]

ALBUMS

  1. NSYNC – No Strings Attached  (Mar. 21)
  2. Pink’s debut – Can’t Take Me Home (Apr. 4)
  3. Britney Spears – Oops! I Did It Again (May 3)
  4. Nelly – Country Grammar (Jun. 27)
  5. Coldplay’s debut – Parachutes (Jul. 10, Nov. 7)
  6. Nelly Furtado’s debut – Whoa Nelly! (Oct. 24)
  7. U2 – All That You Can’t Leave Behind (Oct. 30)
  8. Backstreet Boys – Black and Blue (Nov. 21)

SONGS

*Besides any of those included in the above albums, because, obviously*

 

MOVIES

  1. Center Stage
  2. Whatever It Takes
  3. Where the Heart Is
  4. Gone in 60 Seconds
  5. Mission: Impossible II
  6. Boys and Girls
  7. X-Men
  8. What Lies Beneath
  9. Coyote Ugly
  10. Bring It On
  11. Remember the Titans
  12. Meet the Parents
  13. Charlie’s Angels
  14. Dude, Where’s My Car?
  15. Miss Congeniality

TV SHOWS

  1. Survivor
  2. Even Stevens
  3. Big Brother
  4. Dark Angel
  5. Gilmore Girls
  6. Boston Public
  7. Boy Meets World (Finale)
  8. Beverly Hills 90210 (Finale)
  9. The 10th Kingdom (Miniseries)

 

When Should TV Shows End?: Thoughts of a Concerned TV Fan

When to end TV shows – it’s a topic that gets brought up quite a fair bit. Some shows get cancelled rather prematurely or without notice. Other shows go on for what seems like a REALLY long time.

Last week, when it was announced that NBC’s The Office will be ending after its upcoming 9th season, the topic got brought up again. The Office, while quite successful in the beginning began to falter somewhere between seasons 5+6, and then season 8 was just not there. It led many to question why the show hadn’t just ended when Steve Carrell’s Michael Scott left at the end of season 7. Heck, when Carrell announced he was going to be leaving, people were already saying they should end it and wondered if the show could even survive such a big cast departure. So all of it got me thinking (as tends to happens): what other shows on the air right now need an end date? What shows are shockingly still on the air?

SHOWS THAT NEED AN END DATE

[Warning: Spoilers may be ahead if you haven’t caught up on the most recent seasons.]

1.) HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER

Don’t get me wrong, I love HIMYM. I’m still a huge fan of the show, even if season 7 was a little iffy for me. But if there ever was a show that needed an end date (like Lost when it was on the air), it’d be HIMYM. Yeah, yeah, it’s about the journey, not the destination – but the journey is going into its 8th season, with no real indication as to when we’re actually meeting said ‘mother’. We’ve gotten breadcrumbs along the way: the yellow umbrella, Rachel Bilson as the mother’s former roommate Cindy, Barney & Robin’s wedding. It’s great and all but I think we can all agree that all people involved in the show need a precise end date to work towards.

2.) PRETTY LITTLE LIARS

It could be a side effect of me growing up or just the fact that I watch too much television, but the teen drama could use an end date. I’ve watched PLL from the beginning and saw it as a guilty pleasure. However, somewhere in the midst of watching this 3rd season, I found myself incredibly bored watching this teen mystery unfold. For some reason, their season splits have made it seem as though the show has been on way longer than it has and one would think that after the reveal that Mona was ‘A’ (or technically, part of an ‘A’ Team) at the end of season 2, things would really kick into gear. Unfortunately, most of season 3 thus far just seems like it was a rehash or like they were cycling around the same prospects of season 1 before revealing that Toby was another member of the ‘A’ team during the summer finale.

3.) DEXTER

I recently caught up on season 6, and at the end of it, all I kept on thinking was: “It seriously took them 6 seasons to get to this point of someone else finding out about what Dexter does?!” I suppose if you put it in perspective, it is the equivalent of 3 seasons on a broadcast network show, which isn’t THAT bad. But 6 seasons with their own story arc and going into season 7 with Deb knowing the big secret, you really can’t help but go “IT TOOK THEM THIS LONG?!” To be fair though, the show was announced late last year to be renewed through an eighth season, and they later announced that season 8 will be the last. So we know the end game is near (sort of).

SHOWS THAT DON’T SEEM TO WANT TO END

Grey’s Anatomy. 90210. NCIS. CSI. Two and a Half Men.

To be honest, I’ve never watched an episode of NCIS and I was never really fond of ‘Men’ so I can’t diss them too much. But seriously, how long have these shows been on the air?! I know, I know…ratings are apparently everything to the studio networks. Though at some point, shouldn’t someone just stand up and say “Ya know, we’ve had a good run. Let’s end the show before we run out of stories to tell, go downhill and start becoming a joke” (or something like that).

BONUS: REALITY EDITION

I love my fair share of reality shows, but even I have to admit that having 2 editions of some shows in one season is starting to take its toll. The Amazing Race. Survivor. Dancing With The Stars. Heck, I’m even so inclined to already include The Voice in here. After watching these shows for SO many years and SO many seasons, I honestly don’t know how the producers of the shows can try to keep it fresh. Obviously I still watch the shows, but I’ve found myself sort of indifferent to what happens, like it’s not as exciting as it used to be. Part of it has to do with casting and who they get to compete, though sometimes you don’t know what kind of “reality personality” you’re gonna get until you start filming. They probably would never do this, but the networks should begin to consider maybe only doing one cycle a season. This is where The Voice comes in and of course, did the opposite and is now airing 2 cycles a season. Just a bad idea…

My general thought is that once a show gets past season 5, talks should be going as to how much longer the show should really be on the air. Yeah, everyone always says on-the-record,  “We’ll keep going as long as the fans and the networks wants us to. We have so many more stories to tell” Let’s be real though, the networks have a bigger say than the fans, and if a show is still bringing in the ratings (and subsequent ad dollars), they’re going to keep the show going until who knows when. Think about it, 5 seasons of a show isn’t bad at all, and do they REALLY have more GOOD stories to tell after that point? Questions to ponder about.

So thoughts on what shows should be given an end date? Which shows are inexplicably still on the air after what seems like forever?

2010 Fall TV Season – Week 1 Roundup

Although some TV shows (namely CW shows and a few here and there) had premiered since early on in the month, this past week (beginning Sept. 20) was truly the official start of the fall TV season. In lieu of posting every day for the past week, this is going to be just one big megapost on the first full week of the new season. [Note: this may just end up being my thoughts on the shows than the particular episode that aired]

MONDAY

  • Dancing With The Stars: The 11th season started…and I don’t really care. I think it has a lot to do with the cast this season, which sure, got a lot of people talking but I’m not that excited to be watching it every week. If it wasn’t for the fact that we watch this sort of as a family over dinner, then I’d probably just watch it later and watch my other Monday shows in their actual time.
  • Chuck: It’s so nice to have Chuck back! So at the end of last season, Chuck promised Ellie that he was quitting the spy game for good, but that was before he was sent on a mission from his dad to search for his mom. With this first episode, it really set the story of the season. The Buy More has been rebuilt and is now CIA-operated. Chuck and Morgan are on the search for Chuck’s mom. Sarah and Casey are now on missions without Chuck, but of course, it didn’t take long for Team Bartowski to be reunited. While the quality of some shows suffer as they continue, Chuck just keeps getting better. Constant fear of cancellation assures that the writers are always on their A-game?
  • How I Met Your Mother: We’re back to actually looking for the mother! It’s an interesting dynamic to consider that the show’s about looking for the “mother” and logically speaking, when we meet the mother and Ted gets married for real, the show will be over. We want to know who the mother is, but we don’t want the show to end. With shows like this, I almost feel like they should set an end date (like Lost did), so we know it’s coming and the writers can work on getting to that end point.
  • The Event: I wanted to watch this new NBC show because of the overlying mystery surrounding it. I love watching mystery thrillers. That’s why I watched FlashForward last season…and then it got increasingly worse and eventually cancelled. It’s hard to explain the show, because the show is about finding out “What is the Event?” The style of the show is slightly different as well, in that they show what is happening in the present, and then they jump the story back to show something that led to what is happening now. With a lot of characters and individual stories, jumping back for all of them seemed like overkill. It could take some getting used to. Plus I don’t feel much for the characters. The only one that’s connected is Jason Ritter’s character, Sean. Everyone else is more like caricatures or just structures of characters; there’s no sense of character development. I’ll continue watching for a couple weeks to see if it hits its stride, but if it doesn’t pick it up and make us care, I’m gonna have to leave by the wayside.
  • Hawaii Five-O: There’s action and it’s a lot of fun to watch. I don’t watch a lot of the other CBS cop shows, so I can’t really judge them fairly. But the look and tone of the other shows seem so serious. With this show, maybe it’s the fact that it’s located in Hawaii so it gives it a more vibe-y, less serious feel, but there’s a natural humour/lightness with the chemistry of its stars, which makes the show fun to watch.
  • Gossip Girl/90210: It’s kinda hard to believe that already, in their 4th and 3rd seasons, these shows are now shows I watch out of habit. I think the thing that’s getting me to come back right now are the guest stars – Katie Cassidy on GG, Kyle Riabko on 90210.

TUESDAY

  • Glee: I’ll write more on Glee later when I discuss the Britney episode, but I’m happy it’s back. New music every week. Ryan Murphy did say that this season will go back to learning more about the characters and I really hope that’s true. But at least in the first episode back, they had a sense of humour and poked fun at themselves by addressing what others have critiqued them on (i.e. Mr. Schue’s rapping).
  • One Tree Hill: Only in the world of OTH do two people get shot, don’t get discovered for 2 days and still survive. It’s one of those things that fans of the show have come to love about it – the sometimes ridiculousness that comes with a lot of heart. Speaking of the heart of the show, the theme song’s back! I honestly forgot how much I missed hearing Gavin Degraw’s “I Don’t Want to Be” during the opening credits. And now as much as it pains me to say it, I kind of hope this season’s the last one. I love OTH, I really do, but I sort of feel like it’s time to move on. I’ll still watch if it continues obviously, but the thought of it getting a nice send-off lingers in the back of my brain.
  • Life Unexpected: The thing that gets me watching this show are the relationships. Said it before when it first premiered, but it’s like a throwback to the old WB days with shows like Felicity and Gilmore Girls. You don’t get those types of shows that often anymore. It also helps a little that Shaun Sipos is a recurring guest star this season. Melrose Place might have been predictable at times, writing decent at best, but it was a guilty pleasure.
  • Running Wilde: Will Arnett + Keri Russell + the creator of Arrested Development = comedy gold? It wasn’t as funny as I hoped it would be, but I’m willing to stick it out for a while and see if it gets better. Community was hit and miss for the first half of its freshman season, and then it hit its stride and was so consistently funny for the rest of the season. I’m holding out hope.
  • No Ordinary Family: So it didn’t premiere until last night but I look forward to watching more of it. The big thing with this show is how they find the right balance between family drama and superhero concept. And we’ve got more O.C. people back on TV; this time, Autumn Reeser aka Taylor Townsend!
  • Parenthood: Great writing, great acting, great to see it come back for a second season. Tuesday’s really become a night for some great family dramas.

WEDNESDAY

  • Survivor: It’s gonna be hard for this season to beat the Heroes vs. Villains season, but they’re trying. 2 weeks, and 2 people who got sent packing because they dug their own grave by not shutting up. Self-destruction, bad for the person, great for the game.
  • Undercovers: It’s like Mr. and Mrs. Smith but with more humour. Well, this is JJ Abrams, so let’s rephrase that. It’s like the next chapter of Sydney & Vaughn. The pilot was a little all over the place, but it’ll get better hopefully.
  • Better With You: New ABC comedy starring Joanna Garcia and Jennifer Finnigan. I want to like the show, honestly, because of the actors involved. And again, I hope it gets better because judging by the pilot alone, for one thing, they overdo the laugh track. It’s really noticeable. The writing is pretty standard relationship comedy; there’s nothing really new to it.
  • Modern Family: So full of laughter and heart, with amazing writing and acting. I mean seriously, the show completely deserved the Emmy for Outstanding Comedy. Gloria the protective Colombian mother. Mitchell, the not-so-handy man. Cameron reading celebrity gossip to Lily because he’s tired of reading “The Very Hungry Caterpillar.” Too funny.
  • Cougar Town: A show that has become something more than what it started out to be. One-two punch of Modern Family and Cougar Town is so perfect for Wednesday night. There’s just nothing else to really say about it.
  • Hellcats: I talked about the premiere and now I can honestly say, I’ve really enjoyed watching it so far. After seeing so many high school shows, it is sort of nice to have a show set in college, and to give it a different depth, set in the world of cheerleading. I think that’s what makes college-set shows stand out a little because there’s so many options as to what the back ground can be. Like Greek is settled in the world of frats and sororities, along with the usual relationships and what not. So yeah, Hellcats, will definitely keep watching.

THURSDAY

  • The Vampire Diaries: Definitely keeping things interesting with not only the return of Katherine but Caroline’s now a vampire too. Plus the werewolf storyline.
  • Nikita: I love the show for the fact that we’ve got Maggie Q kicking ass every week. My only concern is the style of the episodes. For 3 consecutive episodes, it seems like the episodes are very procedural-like. Alex finds out the mission for the week, feeds it to Nikita, Nikita attempts to beat Division to the punch, some sort of altercation between Nikita and Michael, and end. There’s bits here and there of development, but I’m hoping they get further along in the storytelling.
  • Fringe: Fringe is back and soooo good. The first episode back was set “Over There” with our Olivia trying get back to our world. Our Olivia has been dosed with the memories of Other Olivia, so now she’s not entirely sure who she is. The ending minutes showed our world with Peter kissing the Alt-Olivia, so obviously he has no idea that she’s not the right Olivia. Oh Fringe, and all you’re mind-twisting and alternate universes. Just awesome.
  • The Big Bang Theory: Continuing the nerdiness of Thursdays, Big Bang is back and still funny. The awkward “date” between Sheldon and Amy Farrah Fowler, with Penny ‘chaperoning.’ Wolowitz’s robot arm used for something that it shouldn’t be used for, which resulted in a slightly overdone but still funny sight gag. The one thing I enjoy most about BBT is the slight references to things that have been mentioned in the past (i.e. the Check Engine light in Penny’s car).
  • Community: I kind of hate that Community and Big Bang are on at the same time, but thinking positively, maybe that’ll make writers of both shows stay on their A-game to see who can be funnier. Which is really hard to determine because BBT is funny for all its nerdiness and Community is funny for all its snarkiness and constant pop culture references. The premiere featured Betty White as the anthropology professor (who by the way, would also make a fantastic memaw for Sheldon) and again the ending bit during the closing credits just is so funny on so many levels.
  • The Office: It’s Steve Carrell’s last season but you couldn’t tell by the premiere that that was happening. Same old Office shenanigans with new pranks by Jim and Pam. Like OTH, I kind of hope Office ends this season. Because again, as much as I love it, it has sort of run its course. And whoever ends up replacing Michael Scott, it just won’t be the same.

SUNDAY

  • The Amazing Race: Still entertaining because you never know what’s gonna happen to these racers. First of all, producers, you gave them SMART cars to race out of Boston?! Seriously?! LOL. SMART cars are not a very smart choice for RACING. Just no. Second of all, did you see that girl get hit by the watermelon? And then she picked right up and finished the task. Crazy awesome. If the rest of the season is as good as this leg of the race, we’re in for a very fun ride.
  • Brothers and Sisters: Back to the drama of the Walker clan. Still watch this show out of habit but it was a return to form with the first episode back. We jumped forward a year after last season’s car accident and everyone’s lives has changed. And you know it had been a rough year full of change when Nora’s house had not a single bottle of wine. Walkers with no alcohol? As Justin pointed out, they were not the same Walkers. I don’t know how this season will hold up, but it was kinda nice to see the whole Walker clan back on my TV.

Other notes:

  • I forgot to watch Blue Bloods on Friday. Seriously, new show, on a Friday? That’s hard man.
  • Didn’t watch Lonestar. Didn’t intend to. Reviews were good. Ratings were weak. First cancellation of the season.
  • On the other hand, $#*! My Dad Says got good ratings, which is a little hard to believe. I guess the return of Shatner does wonders for a show that doesn’t look all that good?
  • After passing on the majority of last season, Desperate Housewives might be able to pull me back in, what with Vanessa Williams moving onto Wisteria Lane, plus Brian Austin Green romancing Marcia Cross (original 90210/Melrose Place, what what? ahaha).

CBS Announces 2010-2011 Primetime Lineup

It was CBS’ turn to announce their lineup for the next TV season. They have added 5 new shows for the fall, and one more for midseason.

  • MIKE & MOLLY [Comedy – Mondays @ 9:30] – A new show from Chuck Lorre, the person behind Two and a Half Men and The Big Bang Theory. Obviously, Lorre’s other 2 shows are big hits, so it’s safe to say that this show stands a good chance. Not to mention, the show is getting Two and a Half Men as its lead in. Personally, I think I’ll wait and see to make a definite decision.
  • HAWAII FIVE-O [Drama – Mondays @ 10] – Remake of the original show. It’s another cop show, which would usually mean a definite no in my books. But considering all the people involved, I might give it a chance. Alex O’Laughlin, Scott Cann, Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park stars. Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci are two of the executive producers.
  • THE DEFENDERS [Drama – Wednesdays @ 10] – Legal dramedy starring Jerry O’Connell and Jim Belushi. The official description says “comedic drama” and it’s about lawyers – I immediately think Ally McBeal.
  • BLUE BLOODS [Drama – Fridays @ 10] – The show stars Tom Selleck and Donnie Wahlberg. It’s sort of a family drama, based around NYC law enforcement. It’s a tough call putting a new show (or any show for that matter) on Fridays, so I feel a little disinclined to give it a shot, in the chance that it could very well get cancelled. Friday boredom might lead me to watch this though.
  • S*** MY DAD SAYS [Comedy – Thursdays @ 8:30] – The first show to be based on something coming from Twitter. The show stars William Shatner. It will probably be funny, but it’s humour can probably only go so far considering it’s on during primetime on CBS, as opposed to a cable network. Yeah not so sure about this one.
  • CRIMINAL MINDS SPINOFF [Drama – Midseason] – I don’t watch the original, so don’t care about the spinoff.

The biggest thing to happen to the CBS schedule is the moving around of some of their existing shows. CSI:NY has been moved to Fridays @ 9, CSI:Miami has been moved to Sundays @ 10, The Big Bang Theory has been moved to Thursdays @ 8, and what’s really getting me mad is Survivor being moved to Wednesdays @ 8. Sure, that’s one less hour-long show for me to watch on Thursdays (BBT moved to Thursdays isn’t helping me all that much either), but I was excited that I get to watch the new NBC show Undercovers @ 8 on Wednesdays next season, because there’s nothing else to watch at that time. And now they put Survivor in that timeslot. With my family, Survivor takes precedence, so Undercovers is gonna have to be watched at a later time now. Damn.

Anyways, you can check out the full lineup and descriptions of all the new shows here.