General Recap

It’s been a while since I’ve really written about anything but Hellcats, so quick comments it is:

Gossip Girl– Who else felt the urge to jump up and dance when they realized that Jenny was pretty much gone. As an added bonus for this episode, Vanessa was MIA. The Chuck-Blaire-Jenny storyline was actually fantastic (and the only reason why bring Little J around is worth it is that she seems to attract scheming) and leaves the show wide open for new ideas. (Could it really have been that easy and that quick to end the Chuck-Blaire war?) Is anyone else sick of Serena’s plot lines? What I once found interesting about her character was how she was this out of control party girl who was trying to change, but that lasted only a little while. Now, her only story lines revolve around fighting with her mom (which is somewhat interesting) and sleeping with boys (which is getting lame). Everyone else has other problems of one sort or another, can’t she have some other issues?

90210– While Annie remains the most annoying character on the show, Naomi had become incredibly compelling of late. EW recapper may dislike seeing the softer side of Jenn, but I found it endearing that while she may be okay with messing with her sister, no one else better hurt her. It’s like a really screwed up version of the typical sibling relationship. I will say that the Ivy-Laurel-Oscar situation is more disturbing than anything else. Poor Ivy. Maybe we’re finally getting deeper into her character? I almost felt bad for Adrianna but aside from the fact that I don’t know how she possibly thought she wouldn’t get caught, she has now made her bed…As for Liam, stuck in the house of stalker-girlfriend should be interesting and you knew it was coming when he asked no questions before accepting. Meanwhile, where was Teddy, make Silver more interesting, get rid of Navid, and wonder about Dixon.

Chuck– People, if you are not watching this show, you are really making a mistake! This episode, dealing with Chuck’s mom was so interesting. I love how this show always examines the idea of family vs honesty. When you’re in the spy game, who can you really trust? Biggest complaint of the show: everyone keeping secrets from Ellie. I don’t know about anyone else, but I think she can handle it. And I think she can kick butt if given the chance. Plus Awesome has been missing for the past few episodes, which is sad. Casey using Grimes as bait though, genius.

Glee– Rolling Stones thinks the Rocky Horror episode was one of its best episodes. It may be true. But as someone who had never seen Rocky Horror (I associate it with the creepy kids who used to walk around in lingerie for the activities fair in college), it was just ok. I mean, it was fun, but it wasn’t anything special either. Adam Shankman did an excellent job though. I will say that the idea of having adults in the play was pretty disturbing and I didn’t find the scene between Emma and Schu to be any better. Time and place people!

Better With You– despite my earlier critique, this show has actually grown on me. The scenes seem to be a bit longer (or maybe I’ve just gotten used to them) and the show has hit its stride. Maybe not the best comedy out there, but it definitely has some good moments.

Raising Hope– this show has actually grown on me as well. Every grandmother scene makes me cringe, but otherwise, I like where things have gone. They’re still all incredibly stupid, but somehow it has become more endearing than annoying. (Take this week’s Halloween episode: The dad spent years scaring his son on Halloween so that his son would come home and hug him because he never hugged him anymore. There’s something oddly sweet about how screwed up that is.)

No Ordinary Family– Another show that more people should be watching. The show has started pushing into the realm of the bigger mythology aspects, which is always exciting, but the family drama is pretty solid as well. Daphne right now is pretty lame and could use something more interesting, but the others are much better to watch. EW seems to think JJ was on the road to evil because he kept his powers a secret and used them to get on the football team and do well on tests. The issue has sort of been relieved this week, but personally I disagree with the assessment. Everyone else used their abilities to succeed in sports or academia or some other area, why shouldn’t he? Should he not do well in school despite his ability to do well now, not get into a good school, and not put himself into a position where in the future he might be able to cure cancer or something simply because he has a special ability? I find his making the football team less plausible because even if you can read all the angles, having the ability to throw well enough or far enough or run far enough requires more than a superbrain. We never got the impression that JJ was particularly fit. In fact, they kept talking about how small he was, so how is it that when he got tackled by someone twice his size he was totally fine?

The Event– This show seems to be getting as many complaints as it gets viewers, but I haven’t been as bothered. Sure, it was annoying to have Sophia locked up because she was relegated to the role of “I can’t tell you the truth but I want to be your friend” and nothing more. It was a little frustrating to see Layla be little more than the damsel in distress, but I don’t think that her escape attempt was undermined by the fact that they planned it. Not everyone would have taken the opportunity to even try. And earlier she made an attempt without them planning it. Not to say it isn’t nice to see her out and free. Let’s just hope she gets to play a stronger role now.

Survivor– compared to the epic season last year, this one has been a relatively calm and lame one. I am not sure why they thought it was a good idea to have a young vs old season. Not to say that no old people can do well in this game, but a less physically demanding set of challenges gets boring after a while. Then there’s the question of what some people are thinking. Marty giving up his idol at the promise that he’d get it back next week, Naonka attacking a handicapped person with such fervor that you wonder if it was her religious calling, Sash not watching his tongue at tribal council…I love Jeff Probst’s comparison between Brenda and Parvati. He makes some good points. I think Parvati definitely has to be considered one of the, if not the best, player to have ever played the game. If I could vote on one player for them to bring back, Parvati would be it (though I hope she watched the last season’s tribal and learned what she should have said), though I think she’s done so well in the past that she might get voted out first just to make sure she isn’t a threat. There’s no one as polarizing and compelling this season as in others. I will say that seeing Alina cry actually made her more endearing. The only reason I don’t think it was an act was because normally we’d see a confessional with her saying so.

Caprica– not much to say here other than it’s a shame this show is going off the air (and bizarre that they are doing another Battlestar spin off considering the lackluster success of this one). The show has some solid points, though I wish it focused more on Zoe because it always felt like she was smarter and more complex than everyone else.

Vampire Diaries– Bringing Katherine into the mix and turning Caroline into a vampire were two of the best decisions this show ever made. (Clearly they were going to bring Katherine in eventually, but I’m glad it has happened.) I will say that though I really liked Bonnie in season one, she has really begun to frustrate me since her major anti-vampire crusade has begun. She, with all her history and all she’s seen, should know better than to lump all of them into one group. I’m glad Jeremy is no longer so mopey, but the truth is I’m sort of done with him. He’s never interesting except in so far as the other things going on around him.

Grey’s Anatomy– I absolutely love how this season has shaped up. Some people may say the show is past its prime but I really think this is one of its best seasons so far. Christina is a particularly fascinating case and despite my initial dislike of Torres going gay, I love her and Arizona together. I find Mark and Lexie slightly creepy because she could totally be his daughter, but she does have a good effect on him. The one thing that I feel like I’m missing right now is more Bailey time! Why has she only had a few minutes? (Still not a fan of Hunt-Yang, but fine, I won’t fight it for now.)

Private Practice– You know, a lot of people think this is just a poor imitation of Grey’s but I really find it enjoyable. Some episodes more than others. The Pete-Violet relationship is ridiculous, but I find Charlotte incredibly compelling (and can’t wait to see this storyline with her tonight) and even like how she is with Cooper. If they actually use Amelia, I think she could be an interesting character as well because she has a lot of crazy baggage. (Apparently so does Derrick, but who knew?) I’m sad that they totally dropped the ball on Betsy and kind of feel like it Sam in particular really screwed up. Dale died saving his daughter, Sam couldn’t save Dale’s? Naomi’s absence was oddly felt because this was a moment you’d expect her to be involved in. And have quite the say in. I would love to see Betsy back in a few years, totally screwed up and angry at them. Knowing Shonda Rimes, I wouldn’t count that possibility out.

Dexter– Julia Stiles welcome back! She has been fantastic as Lumen this season and the way her character interacts with Dexter is fascinating. I love Deb and hope her story picks up a bit. Frankly, it’s time her story be about something other than boys. I’m not sure what since she’s already done the victim thing and already worked for the job she wanted, but something’s gotta happen. What do you think would happen if she found out about Dexter and her dad?

Brothers and Sisters– I’m not sure why people are so upset with this current season. While I find Sarah to be a lamer version of herself, Nora as talk show host is just fantastic. The newest Kevin-Scotty drama is both endearing and upsetting. Just when I was starting to really like Scotty. I’ve never cared for Kitty so her story is neither here nor there for me, but I would be okay with getting rid of Luc. (Some people may find the accent thing sexy, for me it just gets annoying.) But even with these many issues, I still find the show compelling. It always has a couple good tearjerker moments and I love the family’s banter. I did miss Saul this week though and hope to get him back soon.

Nikita– I’m liking this show more and more as it continues (whereas I’m finding myself no longer watching Undercovers) though I still don’t find Nikita herself as compelling as I’d like. It really comes down to her protege. She is excellent in basically all she does and I can’t wait to see how they try to test her next. I also wonder how long her identity can remain a secret. Nikita employs a large degree of “idiot plot” (the only reason Alex’s cover works is because everyone around her, despite being a highly successful secret ops organization, is apparently too stupid to see her sending constant outgoing messages and being in the computer lab when she shouldn’t be. (Idiot Plot is my new favorite term.)

Project Runway– Ah the finale. While this season wasn’t nearly as compelling as some others (Heidi really needs to learn what the phrase “throwing someone under the bus” actually means and the talent was disappointing), there is enough there to pique my interest. The final runway this week should be interesting at least since they’ve got the three designers with the most distinct visions competing. It does seem unimaginable that Mondo won’t win, but hard to say for sure.

America’s Next Top Model– Ann’s awkwardness has finally found its weakness. We always knew what it was but it was well highlighted this week. Meanwhile, Kayla is excellent and I really hope she keeps strong. She might be my favorite, weird hair color makeover and all. Not many other girls who I find particularly great (oddly, all the international versions seem to get the more interesting and breathtaking girls). I don’t love commercial weeks. At the very least, I appreciate them having a photograph at the end as well and wish they’d opted to do that this season.

Anyway, that’s about everything. Any shows I missed? What have you been thinking about this season’s shows?

Advertisements

General Recaps

The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Tod Margaret– I had the chance to finally check out this new show and I wasn’t impressed in the least. It was basically just watch an ill-qualified idiot be given more responsibilities than he can handle and see him fail. There wasn’t really anything funny about it and much as I love British accents, that wasn’t enough to draw me in. None of the characters were compelling or made me want to watch more.

Glee– Before I even mention this week’s Grilled Cheesus episode, I wanted to talk about the Britney/Brittany episode. TV guide complained that Heather’s vocals are weak, but if we’re honest with ourselves, so are Britney Spears’s. I remember when Baby One More Time was popular, we got one of our teachers to listen to the song and she said: “well, it’s fine, but why does she whine so much?” What the episode did showcase was Brittany’s awesome dancing, her body (which is better than Spears’s ever was), and her awesome stupidity. I didn’t really expect more out of the episode, though I do agree with the assessment that I prefer songs directly related to what is happening and given the number of songs Britney’s put out, it shouldn’t have been all that difficult to manage. On to this week, I really liked the conversation about religion though it would have been nice to hear about the actual Jewish side of things (Rachel for example who cares enough about Judaism to want her kids to be raised Jewish though not enough to date/plan to marry a Jew). As always, Kurt was fantastic. Anyone notice that Rachel is much more stylish this season?

Running Wilde– hasn’t gotten any better really. One of the faults of the show is the daughter’s voiceovers. She’s just got no comic delivery (though she doesn’t have much to work with)

Raising Hope– It’s starting to grow on me. I’m not sure why though. I did like the baby getting lost in the Hoarders’ closet. Interesting that the mom kept all that stuff because she hoped for something better, I don’t think that’s what it’s about for most hoarders.

Parenthood
– Continued solid performances by all involved but I don’t like how Amber has been mostly MIA lately. Bring her back! I liked seeing Gabby get stuck dealing with Crosby and I actually kind of hope they bring Gabby in more. The kid who plays Max is fantastic and the episode about Adam trying to bond with him was really one of the best.

Brothers and Sister– I still think this is some of the best writing for TV dramas. Thank you college roomie for insisting I watch it. (If you haven’t watched it, start from the beginning and give it a couple episodes before you decide.) Not a huge fan of Sarah’s bangs and the daughter’s haircut is pretty awful. I surprisingly don’t mind Tommy being gone but I do miss Saul and Rebecca.

Chuck– I never thought I’d say this, but I really enjoyed Nicole Richie’s performance. Her dynamic with Sarah/Jenny is fantastic though from what we’ve learned of her past I can’t imagine her as a punching bag. I would love to learn more about her. I don’t really get this ever changing agent Greta thing, but that’s ok. I do miss Elie and Awesome.

Outsourced– I’m ready to cross this one off, now that I’ve given it a second episode. This season’s new comedies are just not doing it. How did they get so many great shows last season (Modern Family, The Middle, Cougar Town) and have so many blah ones this season?

No Ordinary Family– I didn’t love this episode the way that I loved the pilot, but it was still enjoyable. I particularly liked the mom tripping over a bicycle while running at superspeed (didn’t anyone ever tell her to watch where she’s going?) and it did help us discover that she has a Wolverine healing factor (or a cheerleader’s). EW talked about JJ’s ability as cheating, but I have a different take on it. Aside from the fact that I’m not sure he can turn his ability on and off, is it cheating to use his own abilities?

Life Unexpected– it’s unclear to me why exactly Lux didn’t want Tash to stay with her newest foster family (was it because the woman was awful or because the woman had been a mother figure?) I miss Cate on the radio but I suppose this woman does bring new drama. My question is how the listeners feel about it. The decision to fire Cate seemed almost arbitrary, like it was a personal vendetta and not a business decision.

Nikita– learning what we did about Alex was really interesting (and even better that Amanda recognized that she was lying despite an excellent acting job). I really like the flashbacks and wish we could learn more about Nikita and why we should really feel for her vendetta (not in the sense that I don’t think Division is bad and needs to be brought down, but in the sense that I don’t buy the love story).

Dexter– There’s something fascinatingly disturbing about Deb’s blindness when it comes to Dexter. How can she, being so close to him, think he is the strong, supportive older brother? Can anyone with so little humanity really fake it that well? Seeing Dexter with Cody was great though I can’t pretend I’m sorry to see Astor go. There’s only so much pre-teen melodrama a person can take.

Undercovers– another show where I found the second episode slightly less appealing that the first. I think my main issue here is that there isn’t any real tension between the main characters. Everything was just a little ordinary. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t amazing either.

Vampire Diaries– if there’s one show that’s really kicked it up a bit (despite a sadly departed Anna), it’s this one. The Katherine vs Elena scene was great and I think I actually believe Katherine loved Stefan. Of course, Katherine’s version of loving isn’t so loving, but that’s a different story. I like Caroline the vampire when she’s struggling with her feelings for Matt, less so when she’s Katherine’s puppets. Why not come clean and get help? I miss the Bonnie of old, this new, moody, vindictive one is tiring.

Gossip Girl– Serena’s storyline is just dumb. I appreciate that she’s meant to be the hot wild child, but really, I prefer her storylines to revolve around her sordid past, fighting with her mom, and fighting with Blaire. And if they must do a love angle for her, perhaps one that brings in a new character. I’m so sick of Dan and Nate. (Nate for his lack of personality and Dan for…liking Vanessa.) I did feel for Dan losing “his” baby. The Blaire-Chuck dynamic has taken an interesting turn. A part of me didn’t think Eva would really be gone or expected him to fly after her or something, but instead he’s decided to go to war against Blaire. Should be interesting. You know, Serena and Blaire fought to get into that exclusive society and now there’s nothing about it.

90210– Adrianna is so dumb that I kind of feel like she’s getting what’s coming to her. But then, her new manager is so slimy that I kind of feel bad. As always I don’t care for Annie so her selling her eggs, besides being stupid and so illegal since she’s probably not old enough to do it (where will she do it?). Silver’s was sort of background this week. All she really did was make situations that allowed for other people’s drama. Ivy’s sex insecurity can only get better now that Dixon has found out that he might be HIV positive. How paranoid will she be when he either doesn’t show or doesn’t want to have sex? Liam and his brother was just eh. Naomi was also sort of a non-entity this week, but she’s been fairly interesting in the last couple weeks so I forgive her.

Grey’s Anatomy– I still mostly don’t care about Meredith, though I will admit that I like how she interacts with Christina. Speaking of, how did anyone think Christina getting married was a good idea or that it was something she wanted/was ready for. I’m guessing the writers will make it work, but I don’t believe it. (I don’t particularly like Hunt so that could be part of it.) Her reaction in the OR was so compelling and was definitely one of the moments of the week. I also liked Lexie-Mark (or lack thereof) for its complexity and Arizona-Callie for its sweetness (even though I had a hard time believing Callie was gay, I like their relationship enough to not care). I’m actually quite impressed with this season so far. I think cutting out some of the new cast from last season was really smart and the fallout of the shooting has been masterfully done. The thing I am most excited for: Amelia’s arrival. Which leads me to…

Private Practice– this show has had its ups and downs and it seems like the Grey’s-Practice writers were murder happy last season. The Violet-Pete relationship is still pretty awful (because though I liked the actress as Amy in Judging Amy, I find Violet grating and Pete so much better than her) but I love the way it interacted with the Coop-Charlotte relationship. I really like Charlotte and she did a great job this past episode of becoming more human while implying that she’d been that way all along. I don’t care for Naomi or Sheldon, but I must admit Addison has grown on me lately. I like Sam though I do hope his storyline doesn’t become all about him and Addison and nothing more. (Same goes vice-versa.) Though sad to see Dell go, I do accept the reasoning, better to get rid of a character than force storylines that are bad. Plus his death was pretty heart-wrenching and unexpected. Finally, I’m thrilled that Amelia has become a permanent cast member, it’s like another link between this show and Grey’s but still natural.

Cancellation note: Huge, Lonestar, and My Generation have so far been canceled.

What do you think? Any shows you didn’t like, shows I should give a second chance, or shows you think I should be watching?

Some General Recaps

I haven’t done one of these in a while but I thought now was as good a time as any:

Chuck- Before saying anything about the show, I would first like to say IT WAS RENEWED! I think this season has done a really impressive job of balancing Chuck’s new abilities with the old, bumbling Chuck. I would really like Ellie to find out the truth already though, it just seems unfair that she’s the only one who knows nothing about it. At the same time, this new storyline with her being tricked into betraying her dad is pretty awesome and not unexpected. In TV Land, there are always consequences to keeping secrets, just not always the consequences you might expect. Also, while I am not a fan of the Shaw plot line (mostly because doesn’t it seem strange to anyone that the CIA had Sarah kill one of their agent’s wives as her final spy test?), I do think the handled Chuck and Sarah’s relationship overall. Especially how they finally decided they could not give up the spy life. Final thing, anyone else not shocked that Bryce is not dead? (Though isn’t he on a different show now?)

House- I know some people are not a fan of this current season. They think House has lost his bite. But personally, I’m rather enjoying it. I’m a little unhappy with the way they’ve resolved the Cameron-Chase relationship and I miss the Cuddy-House dynamic, but I think they’ve taken the House-Wilson friendship to great new heights and we’ve gotten some more insight into House, which is always interesting. Plus, I love the way House and Wilson’s ex/current gf treat each other.

24- Not the biggest fan of this Jack Gone Wild section of the show. Murdering Dana Walsh!?! I mean, I hated her too, as is appropriate, but execution? He may have gotten away with all the torture in past seasons–and let’s be honest, most people were cheering for it regardless–but I’m not sure how easy this one would be to get out of. Wouldn’t that be crazy if he ended up in jail in the end? Weird to see Freddie Prinze Junior back in acting, but I’m kind of glad. He’s not the best actor, but it is so nostalgic. Chloe needs to become more assertive. I miss her battle of wills with Renee (or whatever her name was from last season).

Glee- In light of the recent article in Newsweek, (saying that out gay actors cannot successfully pull off straight characters), I feel the need to say that I didn’t know the guy who played Jesse was gay but I don’t really care. If he’s a good actor it won’t show, if he’s a bad actor it will. I think Mark Harris said it best in Entertainment Weekly this week when pointing out that movies are all about suspension of disbelieve and forgetting reality, “Robert Downey Jr. does not really have a special suit that lets him fly.” Anyway, I agree that Jesse and Rachel may not have the BEST chemistry, but keep in mind that he’s playing her and she’s really supposed to love Finn, so it isn’t all that unexpected. Rachel getting laryngitis was hysterical but I’m sad to not have heard her sing “The Climb” because it probably would have sounded awesome. Bringing Rachel to see a paraplegic might have been a little overkill but it was kind of nice to see another piece of Finn–the sympathetic kid who goes to visit a guy despite him no longer being “cool” and it being uncomfortable. And Puck and Mercedes? Bleh.

V- I’m loving how this show has turned out. I think it slowed a bit after the finale but it really picked up as things progressed and I think it has re-hit it’s stride. Largely because of Laura Vandervoot’s character. I think adding her as a more active member of the storyline is much more interesting. ALSO RENEWED!

ANTM- I did not expect a two hour episode this week. I didn’t love the finalists (or even the semi-finalists) and I love the winner even less, but the thing that did strike me most was how much more natural and relaxed Nicole is. Not only that, but she was great in the runway show and putting her first was a stroke of genius for whoever planned things because she didn’t come off looking short in that position.

Mercy- It has not been a good year for medical dramas. How many have been renewed that started in the fall? I’m not sure anyway. (The summer ones fared pretty well, minus Mental, but Trauma, Miami Medical, Three Rivers, Mercy…) It was sort of clear Mercy wasn’t coming back when we saw that Georgina was returning to GG and I can’t say I’m disappointed. The show went from eh to awful. It’s gotten crazy too quickly. Most shows take a few seasons to have characters acting as murderers and main characters nearly dying many times.

Vampire Diaries- Would they stop killing the characters (vampires) that I like! Lexi, Vicky, Pearl, Anna. Come on! I feel like they’ve killed off a lot of potential. And it would have been nice to see some good vampires other than Damon. I’m glad to see that though Elena looks like Katherine, she does not look like Isobel. I can’t wait to see what happens between Elena and Bonnie and how Jeremy’s transition to a vampire (assuming he’s not found first, which I think there’s a good chance of) goes. This was mostly a really good finale, despite my disappointment that Malese Jow (who played Anna) is gone.

Monday Night

Well, this week wasn’t nearly as overwhelming as some other Monday nights, but there were still a number of things on and I haven’t caught up on them all (namely the shows that I intend to recap in full). In the meantime, I do have some thoughts about the other shows out because I think we got some great episodes this week.

Life Unexpected– This week’s episode reminded me of the premiere which made me instantly love the show. While the other episodes have been interesting, they were mostly filled with teen angst (and adult angst) and had less of what drew me to the show, which was this unique look into the life of a kid put up for adoption but never adopted. It’s not that the story has never been told in any way, shape or form, but the way it’s been handled is more subtle (and less woe-is-me) than most portrayals. We find out why Lux is really so angry at Cate, among other things.

Chuck– This episode was so sad in so many ways. They’ve really made me feel for Sarah this season, in part because now she’s the one who is sort of secretly in love instead of Chuck being the pining nerd. Obviously she will find out eventually about Casey’s role in the test, but until then, how will Chuck and Sarah avoid being separated for good? And what about Ellie? Wouldn’t it be super suspicious for him to just disappear? Don’t they think Ellie would make a huge deal about it? Poor planning NSA and CIA.

Trauma– There were a handful of things I disliked about this episode. Largely it was the handling of Nancy and Diana, which was so anti-climactic and abrupt. On the other hand, it was interesting to learn about Rabbit’s past (though too much of a “I figured out the key to explain every bit of your behavior”). I like Rabbit and Marissa’s dynamic. I’d also like to learn more about her.

Big Bang Theory– I know that Leonard is technically the main character of the show but let’s be honest, you can’t really go wrong with an episode about Sheldon. Alcohol may make Raj comfortable talking in front of women but Sheldon and alcohol…not as good a combination. Even my sister, who does not love this show (the characters are a little too much for her) was laughing out loud throughout.

How I Met Your Mother– Probably the best part of this episode was the Barney can’t take a bad picture bit. But there were other details I loved. Lily’s obsession with her birthday reminds me of a friend of mine who has a similar excitement: she has Cindystock, which extends her birthday to a full week. Or month. Now I can’t remember.

24– Well, some exciting and surprising information and some things that I didn’t particularly care for. I really dislike Jack and Rene’s relationship (which seems to be more than close from working in craziness together but is as of yet slightly undefined) so I didn’t care for her charge to save him. Though she did kick butt doing it so I will give her that. Chloe was once again right and did what she needed to (in this case pulling a gun on someone) to make them see it her way. She also stood up for herself which was nice to see. It was sad to see her floundering and weak when last season she was always showing Jeanine how much more awesome she was. And then there’s Dana. Go figure. But still a good surprise.

Castle– I saved the best for last. My sister and I agree that this is the best episode of the season, if not the show as a whole. Everything about it was spot on: Castle and Beckett’s relationship which was made more interesting by introducing the FBI agent Jordan Shaw (the FBI version of Beckett), the super creepy but awesome serial killer who was obsessed with Beckett as Nikki Heat, Beckett and Castle vs Shaw/Shaw and Beckett vs Castle dynamic. The suspense, the humor, and of course the happy ending. (yes, that’s sarcastic for now, but you know it will happen in the next episode) If you haven’t watched this show, you are really missing out because this was one of the best things on last night.

Chuck

I read a really interesting article today that I felt the need to talk about.

If you’ve watched this week’s episode, you know that Chuck and Sarah have, for the moment, called it quits and are pursuing other love interested (Shaw and Hannah). This has apparently garnered anger from a number of fans who have decided to boycott the show in order to force the show’s writers to make the storyline the way they want it.

To me this seems like the most counterintuitive response to the show. For starters, I’m not sure why everyone is surprised that they’ve introduced new love interests, much less why people think boycotting the show is a good plan.

First, if you know anything about TV, of course Sarah and Chuck aren’t together again. The majority of the show’s drama has always been the will they won’t they of Chuck and Sarah. Of course we are supposed to want them to be together. And of course we’re supposed to be sad that they aren’t together. But think about Ross and Rachel on friends. How long did it take to finally and permanently get together? Hannah and Shaw are not permanent cast members. They won’t be there forever. Likely, much of the drama will be things like Hannah thinking Chuck isn’t over Sarah and Shaw thinking Sarah isn’t over Chuck. Ultimately, they will break up (and Shaw and Hannah will probably disappear from the show) and one day, should the show stick around long enough, Sarah and Chuck will end up together (and if they don’t they’ll make sure to build it up so that we can like the newer pairing like they did to transition Clark and Lana to Clark and Lois on Smallville). This is how TV works. Nearly always. Current examples: House and Cuddy (House), Shawn and Juliet (Psych), Castle and Beckett (Castle), Cappy and Casey (Greek), Leonard and Penny (Big Bang Theory), Michael and Fionna (Burn Notice), Nathan and Sophie (Leverage)…you get my point. Also, if all you like about the show is the relationship between them and nothing else, there are other shows with great love stories so go watch one of them rather than throwing a tantrum about this one.

The second part of my “I don’t understand fan reaction” is the boycott. Now, how close to cancellation was Chuck? It took a Subway Campaign (and Subway throwing in funds) to save it for another season but the show, while doing decently, is certainly not out of the woods yet. If viewership drops, they’re not going to say “how can we rewrite the show to make people happy?” It’s easier to just write another show then rewrite an existing one. Here is the thing that viewers forget: the writers, not the viewers, know the story arch for the season (and/or the show as a whole). So they can’t just change things on the whim of the viewers because then the rest of the season wouldn’t make sense. By the time there is an opportunity to change the show (aka next season) it will be too late and the show is canceled.

What are your thoughts?

(The original article can be found here.)

Total Recap

With so many shows coming back this week and last (and one of my best friends coming in from Chicago to visit) I’m somewhat behind on my TV shows, so I’m writing a general recap of the shows I’ve seen:

Chuck- so glad this show is finally back. The will they won’t they dynamic of Sarah and Chuck isn’t as good as it used to be since they basically were together for a bit and Sarah sort of feels like a sulking baby. I would love for us to learn more about Sarah. Few people can completely cut ties with their past and I’d like to see her slip up with something that is less about Chuck and more about her.

How I Met Your Mother- Neil Patrick Harris singing and dancing, about suits! Need I say more? It’s like everything you could ask for and more. While the Consummate Consummator didn’t win a Golden Globe, he’s still pretty awesome in my book. The other characters were a little dull this episode but it’s hard to compete with Barney.

Better Off Ted- though not quite as good as other episodes, this show is still too good to be canceled. The Veronica-Rose dynamic is definitely the best thing the show has to offer and I hope we see more of it. How many ways can you corrupt a child?

Leverage- one of the more exciting returns in my mind, this episode was truly one of the greats because it managed to surprise you. Jeri Ryan’s character is much more interesting than Sophie and, while I miss the British accent, I prefer Ryan’s less prinicipled mentality. It’s nice to have one semi-honest thief within the group of honest thieves. Besides, seeing her develop into an honest person is interesting. The others have to rub off on her right? (Can we get more Parker-Hardison please!)

Ugly Betty- this week’s episode was the one I saw them filming! With rumors of Daniel and Betty getting together, a lot of people are upset. While I’m not a fan of the pairing, I am in no way surprised considering that Betty has so profoundly helped him change. At the same time, it’s nice to see a guy and girl be very close and not romantically involved for a change. I sort of kind of a little bit felt bad for Wilhemina. I was proud of Mark for his work with Daniel (promotion anyone?). I didn’t care all that much about Betty and Mark, largely because I’m not a Mark fan. He was mostly a jerk to Betty.

Dollhouse- great episode. These last few have really been some of the best yet and I can’t wait to see the finale next week, in a sad but excited way. Sort of the way I felt about the 7th Harry Potter coming out.

Ghost Whisperer- yet another generic episode. Really, it’s time for the larger storyline to come into play already. There was that one great episode with the child ghost and Aiden and that’s it.

Project Runway- Glad to be back in NY, glad to have the regular judges back (this reminds me, how awesome was it when Tim Gunn guest starred on HIMYM this week? “Sorry Barney, I can’t make it work.”). I think the talent this season looks pretty high though I have some serious disagreements with the decision of the first episode. That and I wonder why Nicole Ritchie was on the show. Who is she to be judging fashion?

Legend of the Seeker- I was wondering when the Sisters of the Light would show up. I’m a little disappointed in the way they made the split since it was so much more dramatic in the book but otherwise I think that part was mostly well done. I don’t really like the most recent Denna plots but she’s not super important so that’s ok. Anyone else notice Kahlen’s new clothing? Way cooler looking that before. And certainly more flattering though still not the most practical.

That’s it for now, more to come.

Chuck

Chuck is back! If you haven’t been watching this spy-comedy, now’s the time to catch up and watch because there’s so much that is great about it. I would add it to the list of shows that didn’t get enough publicity when it started, this time NBC is responsible, but thanks to a deal with Subway (the Subway campaign), the show has come back and here’s to hoping that its ratings pick up. (Though, as we saw with Dollhouse, one lucky break doesn’t mean it will get another.)

Chuck Bartowski is an ordinary, but very smart, guy who works as part of the Nerd Herd at the Buy More store when an old college friend (the one who stole his girlfriend) sends him a disc with the Intersect, which carries all the CIA’s secrets, that implants itself in his mind. This allows him to see things related to that information and “flash” on it, meaning he sees the CIA’s database relating to whatever he saw–so he can spot assassins and criminal masterminds and recognize them, among other things. Agent Sarah Walker and Major John Casey are sent to retrieve the data. When they realize the data is in a person, they are given the responsibility of protecting him.

There’s so much to love about this show, from Captain Awesome (the boyfriend of Chuck’s sister Eli) to awkward best friend Morgan Grimes to the super-cute relationship between Sarah and Chuck. Not to mention the office politics of the Buy More that could be a show of its own (web series NBC?).

The first episode of the premiere was just okay, a lot of setting up and explaining which always slows things down a bit, but episode two really picked up again. You can’t help but feel bad for Chuck though, even though Bryce is dead, he still can’t seem to avoid being overshadowed.