Sunday, January 15, 2012

TV Report: Week of 1/8

Tonight's a busy, busy TV day for me. Yes, there's the Golden Globes which is probably my main priority since I'm an awards nuts, but there's also the football playoffs featuring the Giants and more importantly the beginning of the Australian Open. I didn't even mention my usual Sunday TV fare like The Good Wife, Shameless, and Sherlock. Thank goodness I have tomorrow off. With that said, that's tonight, how about I talk about the TV week that was...


Speaking of Sunday TV...


My two favorite episodes this past week came exactly seven days ago with the latest episode of The Good Wife featuring the welcome return of Carrie Preston's eccentric, but shrewd lawyer Elsbeth Tascioni and the season premiere of Shameless with the return of Emmy Rossum and the rest of the Gallagher clan. Both actress did win my personal end-of-year awards, but that's neither here nor there. While they were my favorite parts, they didn't perform in a vacuum. The Good Wife, like every week, expertly juggles multiple characters and story lines with nary a fumble. This week the main story was a couple suing the always hilarious David Lee who brokered their divorce agreement during Alicia's first year. It gave us very tense moments where we thought Alicia might have ::gasp:: done something wrong showing us not only that this show can make missing paperwork exciting, but also giving a more bonding moment for a newly made-up-ish Kalinda/Alicia. This storyline also offered us a wonderfully new rivalry in Eli and David Lee which I hope will continue to foster. Of course, Elsbeth, as Will's new lawyer, confronting Wendy made me gleeful since both of them are so smart and manipulative is similar and yet very different ways. I'm so looking forward to what transpires there.

As for the Gallagher clan et. al, it was great seeing them back, this time in the summertime. It's been a few months since the events of last season's finale with Steve leaving and Eddie seemingly committing suicide. As per usual, the Gallaghers are surviving just okay in their usual way--Fiona working as a server, Lip doing fight club, Debbie and Carl babysitting the neighborhood kids. Frank gets up to his usual trouble which not only threatens his kids (Liam is held for ransom basically), but makes them lose all their hard-earned money. It's a strong premiere in that regard welcoming us back to what we fell in love with the show in the first place. Oh and it featured a dirty-mouthed shirtless James Wolk as Fiona's rebound. Yes, please.


The Ever So Consistent ABC Wednesday Block...


Apart from possibly Sunday, Wednesday seems to be my favorite TV day which is even made more peculiar since I only watch one network. Or if not my favorite then it's definitely the most consistent/best flow which was solidified even more this week as I graded each individual episodes a B+. The Wire references abounded this week on Suburgatory and Happy Endings with the first show featuring guest star Dan Byrd (Cougartown) working as an undercover cop and the latter show featuring Max, Alex, and Brad staking out a possible prostitution ring. Both had their usual sitcom-y twists of course with Tessa thinking Byrd's cop was actually a closeted gay and the prostitution ring not at all what it seems. For the latter show, the highlights were the guest appearances of Michael McKean (as Dave's dad) and Megan Mullaly (as Penny's mom) who are now dating and of course the racist/homophobic parrot Alex bought.

Meanwhile Modern Family delivered a solid episode that is to be commended for a not-too-grating Cam/Mitchell storyline that had them trying to impress a girl who wanted to give up her baby for adoption. Phil's schtick this time wasn't as funny as I usually found it, but I loved his final scene with Gloria who wanted Phil to be angry with her so it felt like they were family. I liked the Egg Drop bit more for Alex's background snickers and Luke's observations than anything else. Finally, Revenge was delicious as usual featuring the wonderful appearance of Robert Bart as the journalist turned author who burned Emily's father. The ending was predictable in that Emily got her revenged, but it was quite effective with the flames and Nolan's maniacally smiling in the background. I don't have high hopes for Fauxmanda. She's the loose end to Emily's plan and she'll eventually has to be dealt with, but I did love Emily as Cyrano for Amanda scene. Charlotte as Emily's half-sister is... boring, but this is a soap opera and maybe it'll be more development for that underused character.


Welcome Comebacks...


It's been more than a month since we got a new episode of Parks and Recreation and nearly TWO MONTHS since we saw a new episode of Fringe, so I was glad to have both shows back in my life this week. First, Parks was fantastic especially the Ben as depressed plot. Adam Scott was literally stealing scenes throughout from his calzones-zones to his claymaysh. It was also a welcome sight to see him interact with Chris. The other part of the episode with Leslie relaunching her campaign was good, but didn't become great until the end with the ice rink debacle with Gloria Estefan's "Get On You Feet" playing in the background. By the time the basketball player slipped and the song played immediately after, I was delirious from laughing so hard. It was both hilarious painful and painfully hilarious. End result is one we all predicted though with Ben being Leslie's campaign manager. Bring it, Paul Rudd!

As for Fringe, it was a very strong first episode of the new year which in all likelihood might also be its final year. I'd like to think this was probably setup as the mid-season finale, but the ratings made the network delay. Too bad since it really was quite epic in scope with the two Lees from both universe meeting up and Peter confronting not only his "all is not what it seems" father, but also his affectionate mother giving us a wonderfully heartbreaking reunion scene. The Observer's scene with Olivia was appropriately foreboding, but the return of Jared Harris as Jones from the first season is more than exciting and if this is to be the endgame, then I might be able to live with it. Just barely.

Few Other TV Tidbits...

The last episode of Once Upon A Time as a whole wasn't really that strong especially when we were in the real world, but props must go to Rober Carlyle for his great work... Ryan got married on Castle and Castle/walking down the aisle in the end was cute... Amy gleefully reacting to her tiara gift from Sheldon in Big Bang Theory was pure joy... Nice to see 30 Rock back again, but I still miss Community more.. Didn't get to see either The Secret Circle (too much on that night) or Supernatural (falling out of love with the show). Though I hear for the latter, it was a particular good episode. Go figure.

1 comment:

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