If you’re anything like me, you are currently torn between two thoughts: “Yes! TV shows are back!” and “Must everything premiere at the same time!” I appreciate the CW more than ever right now for the simple fact that it started most (all?) of its shows last week while most are starting this week and next week. (I say most because the Apprentice and Survivor both premiered last week–there might have been a couple others too.) This way I had an actual opportunity to watch one without trying to decide what to skip. It’s only Tuesday night and already I’ve fallen behind. Holidays could not have fallen on a worse TV week…
Running Wilde– I actually kind of liked this but I can’t figure out why. There was nothing particularly great about it. Or even good. For a comedy, it wasn’t really funny. Maybe I just like Will Arnett and I’m glad to see Keri Russel–eternally Felicity for me–finally back (I really never got over that awful haircut, but this show may help–sad the curls are all gone). Arnett plays Steve, the selfish (spoiled rich kid) who has no direction in life. Felicity plays Emmy the poor, civil rights activist who got away. She’s taken her daughter Puddle (how can you think that’s a good idea?) to the rain forest to raise her with values, but Puddle hates it there and schemes with Steve to stay. So naturally, Emmy and Puddle come to live on Steve’s estate because Emmy thinks she can be a good influence on Steve. It almost feels like the show is aiming for sitcom but should really be a one hour romantic comedy. We’ll see how it goes after a couple of weeks but so far I’m not sure it’s going anywhere.
Raising Hope– zap2it.com says this show is very funny, but I don’t really agree. Maybe I just don’t find it funny to see people put babies in dangerous situations, but there just wasn’t much for me to laugh about. This one’s about a dysfunctional family helping raise 23-year-old screw up, Jimmy, to raise the baby daughter that is conceived from a one night stand after her mother is executed (for murder). It’s sort of a handful. Jimmy is basically an idiot and the first episode is spent with his mother trying to convince him to give the baby up (the baby was originally named “Princess Beyonce” but they wisely change that to Hope). The only aspect of the show that was a highlight was Sabrina (played by Shannon Woodward) as Jimmy’s love interest. She’s snarky, works at a grocery store, and passes the time rearranging the cans and drawing on the fruit, much to her boss’s chagrin. Maybe Fox should just stick to hour long shows.
Mike & Molly– this follows two overweight people who meet at an Overeaters Anonymous meeting. With how strong CBS’s other half hour comedies are, this one surprises me for how average it is. As EW says: “How long do you give a sitcom to get past a narrow premise and branch out into more diverse and arguably more interesting/funny storylines?” It’s a fair question. Fat jokes can only go so far. The main characters have a sweet dynamic but so far they aren’t the deepest, most complex characters. Not sure I’ll keep watching this one.
The Event– finally had a chance to check this show out. I keeping hearing that it’s the new Lost. It’s such a conspiracy heavy show (the conspiracy involves the government but goes over the head of the president) with a touch of sci-fi mystery. It is difficult to judge how good the show is, but so far it’s got me intrigued enough to keep watching. (I do love mythology heavy shows!) It’s also got a strong cast, including Laura Innes, Blair Underwood, Jason Ritter, Scott Patterson (it’s Luke!) and Zeljko Ivanek, among others.
Top Chef: Just Desserts– Maybe it’s just that the actual top chef is only hit or miss for me, but I didn’t find this all that great. At least in the regular top chef, the contestants can try to adjust their recipes based on how things go (and what messes they make) but here it feels like if you mess up near the beginning your done for the challenge so there’s less anticipation. Also, having the first challenge be essentially what the show cupcake wars is all about (make a cupcake from strange ingredients) it didn’t feel particularly unique.
Chase– well, the opening chase sequence (get it, it’s in the title!) didn’t really do anything for me. Criminal, if you were smart, you would have stayed hidden in the tunnel rather than jumped someone who is clearly trained to fight. Especially when they have a gun and you don’t. Looking at the list of actresses that they considered for Annie Frost, I’m glad they settled on Kelli Giddish. Can you imagine Christina Applegate in that role? (Apparently it was very important to get a blond for the role.) Ultimaely, it was just ok for me and probably not one that I’m going to watch. (I don’t really find that I like traditional cop shows, I usually like there to be a twist or out of place character. Think Bones, Castle, Psych…)
Hawaii 5-0– this one has too many grown men trying to talk like surfing teens. It’s just sad when a fifty year old (made up age) uses “brah.” I’m not sure how I feel about this one. Another one of those ok but not something I’ll be dying to see types. It’s missing the “what makes this unique” element. I know, Hawaii is awesome, but a showing being set there isn’t enough to make it stand out.
Shows I have yet to see (plus other new shows for this week):
Mr Sunshine (did that actually start?)
$#*! My Dad Says (don’t have high hopes for this one)