Monday, October 7, 2013

What's What w/ The Fall 2013 TV Season

The last couple weeks the broadcast nets ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, and CW (are they still a network??) have trotted out their ... mildly anticipated programs of the new Fall Season. Has there been anything worth talking about, caring about, and basically just tuning back in week after week? Well if you haven't had opportunity to look at anything yet yourself, here's a quick guide to what I've sampled thus far!

Here's the Ranking System:

Loved It: One of the best of new season. Definitely gotta check it out!

Liked It: Between "watchable" and "enjoyable", if you've got the room in your DVR queue without any conflicts, then totes go for it.

Leave It: Can see what they were aiming at, but not worth the effort.

Loathed It: Bullshit at its finest ... Or its worst. Same difference.


Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Tuesdays @ 8pm)
The Special Ops Government Tac Team featured in the blockbuster Avengers movie, Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America. Its the one show people were supposed to like this season but something is just ... off. The special ops crew at the core is just too "young & hip", too corny, and way too cliche. With the Marvel library, they have so much material to play with, but aren't making the most of any of it. Its a water-color interpretation of show that needed fine painting to get right. Good idea - Poor execution. Eh ... Leave it.

The Goldbergs (Tuesdays @ 9pm)

Its an 80's version of the Wonder Years ... but with NONE of the humor, wit, warmth, or general nostalgia ... However, the characters are all loud, unrelatable and unbelievably obnoxious and grating .... So, if ur into that? ... Loathed it.

Trophy Wife (Tuesdays @ 930pm)
Party girl finds herself suddenly married and trying to raise step-kids from the new husband's first 2 failed marriages - Trophy Wife was a lot better than I thought it was going to be, and better than a show with this premise SHOULD be. Hilarious? - No. But charmingly simplistic with what its doing and the characters make it work. Liked it.

Lucky 7 (Tuesdays @10pm) Cancelled
Set in NYC, a group of 7 friends, co-wokers, and associates, all desperate in their own way, win a multi-million dollar lottery jackpot. Then things start to get interesting. No words to describe how engrossing this show became with its awesome and multi-layered characters and budding storylines ... But it was the 1st of the new season to get the axe. ABC has cancelled it. Loved it.

Back in the Game (Wednesdays @ 830pm)
Its the Bad New Bears helmed by a struggling, single mom trying to do right by her son and mend her dysfunctional relationship with her dad ... with James Caan as her dad. Awesome. The show takes some risks with its humor that I appreciate, and is genuinely funny. A lot of it rides on the backs of the kids in the show, but they're great with theirs, and the adults are all dopey, in a good way. Liked it.

Super Fun Night (Wednesdays @ 930pm)
3 single underdog girlfriends in NYC ... starring Rebel Wilson. We've seen it all before. I heard about a "sing-off" and Ugly Betty references, and I admittedly expected to HATE this show ...  But I couldn't have been more wrong. It is extremely and legitimately funny. The characters are excellently brought to life with sharp and clever writing. Yeah, this one's a good one. Loved it.


The Blacklist (Mondays @ 10pm)
Super criminal Raymond Reddignton, played by James Spader leads the FBI around by their noses too smug villain" which here is a cross between Hannibal Lecter and Jack Donaghy from 30 Rock. Everything is rather predictable and the FBI is dumbifyed (not a real word) to make Reddington that much more superior. You'll roll your eyes ... more than a few times ... but its fast enough to not be bored with it. This one could have gone either way, but ... Liked it.
on the trail of bad guys they didn't even know exist. Eh ... Spader seems to enjoy being the "

Welcome to the Family (Thursdays @ 830pm)
Blended family hijinks. Teen decides to marry his highschool sweetheart after graduation in lieu of going to Stamford after she gets knocked up. The kids are like puppies - kinda hard to hate them even when they act stupid. But its the families of the two (that incidentally don't get along and aren't a fan on the union) which makes the show watchable. Hard working middle class Latino family vs upper-class Caucasian family. Both are likable and find a way to remain somewhat generic, yet without playing to the usual cliches that you might expect. Harmless, but you would't be missing anything. Leave it.

Sean Saves the World (Thursdays @ 9pm)
Single gay dad (Sean Hayes from Will & Grace) trying to raise his teenage daughter ... Definitely the kind of show idea manufactured in a boardroom, but that doesn't mean it doesn't work. Formulaic? You bet. Everywhere from the smart-ass teen to the sassy trash-talking grandma. But it's the humorous workplace stuff with Sean's unfeeling new boss and his quirky co-workers that the real laughs come out. Liked it.

The Michael J. Fox Show (Thursdays @ 930pm)

Michael J. Fox is back playing an ex-NBC news anchor with Parkinson's Disease who after not finding the "typical relaxed retired family life" he envisioned, decides to go back to work and explore a new chapter in his career. I didn't know what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised with this show. Fox is vulnerable and honest with his character and addressing a lot of the real life challenges he faces living with Parkinson's and acting again. The show is definitely about that, but its not ALL its about. His family is awesome and each one enjoyable in their own right. And the show doesn't dwell on the Parkinson's too much, nor does it ask you to feel sorry for anyone. It's New York authentic (you should know what that means already) and NBC flexes the star power muscle at its disposal with guest stars showing up at every turn, humorously spoofing themselves. Emphasis on "humorous" - As at the end of the day, the show is just straight up funny. Loved it.


We Are Men (Mondays @ 830pm)
Ensemble buddy comedy of 4 single men, tackling dating and various misadventures of ... uhg. Let me just stop there. It's CBS tossing 2 & Half Men and the Hangover in a blender, sprinkling it with Tony Shaloub and Jerry O'Connell and seeing what happens. It mindless, but NOT in a good way. Kal Penn is the only saving grace, but its not enough to waste time with each week. Leave it.

Hostages (Mondays @ 10pm)
Toni Collette is a surgeon tasked with operating on the President of the United States before a group of shadowy individuals with sinister intent take her family hostage and order her to make sure the president doesn't survive the procedure. It started out well, but this is one of those crazy premise shows like Prison Break that only works if you suspend belief to a certain degree. Unfortunately, unlike Prison Break, Hostages takes itself WAY too seriously. Plus, a few episodes in and its hard to even partially LIKE any of the characters, much less appreciate the "predicament" they are in. "What will happen next?" Who cares? Leave it.

The Millers (Thursdays @ 830pm)
Will Arnet has a great track record. Arrested Development he was at his finest. Up All Night was a different, more restrained kind of comedy for him, but he nailed that too. He still has a great cast with him in The Millers, but the writing is possibly the worst of any show this Fall season. If there is one show to avoid at all costs, its this one. Loathed it.

The Crazy Ones (Thursdays @ 9pm)
Robin Williams as an ad man, with Sarah Michelle Gellar as his daughter/ business partner. Uhm .. if you can tolerate Robin Williams doing 85 different versions of the same 3 voices impersonations he does every time he opens his mouth for 30 minutes each week, then maybe you'll like this show ... If you are even PONDERING right now if you could put up with it, I can save you some time and tell you right now that you cannot. SMG in a comedy turn? Well, she's the reluctant straight woman, so ... yeah. Bleh. Leave it.


Sleepy Hollow (Mondays @ 9pm)
The story of Ichabod Crane vs the Headless Horseman in modern day. He's a man displaced through time and with his cop partner is battling witches and demons and the like. We've seen the "supernatural procedural" before and seen it done a lot better, but Sleepy Hollow is relatively light and easy to digest. The leads are fresh and likable, and the story is well-timed fun for the Halloween Fall season. Liked it.

Dads (Tuesdays @ 8pm)
A friend of mine had the perfect quote which he borrowed from Stewie in Family Guy - "Seth Green is in too many things of too low quality", which is perfectly applicable for this new Fox comedy ... Generic crap. Giovanni Ribisi is talent wasted and Brenda Song deserves better this. Terrible all around. You won't crack so much as a smile. Loathed it.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Tuesdays @ 830pm)
Andy Samberg as cool, rebellious, fun-loving, but effective detective ... in Brooklyn. Not funny. Every bit of the ensemble cast is exactly what you expect them to be and they say exactly what you expect them to say. Terry Crewes is the only bright spot on an otherwise abysmal show. The actual "police work" is a just set-piece designed to give the completely unoriginal characters something to do between the consistently flat and uninspired jokes. I think "torture" would just about sum it up. Loathed it.


The Originals (Thursdays @ 9pm)
The Vampire Diaries spin-off about the first family of vampires, The Michaelsons, relocated New Orleans to battle new mystical evil-doers. Uhm ... I guess it works. Vampire Diaries ain't what it used to be but is still watchable, so The Originals falls into the same category. If you are still into vampires and the drama of their love lives, etc, then you might find some enjoyability here. Claire Holt as Rebekah is the icing on the cake. ... If there was cake ... Liked it.

And that's it for the Broadcast Nets! CW is only just getting into their new show premieres, so I'll keep watching and give ya'll the updates on what's what!

2 cents. Spend it wisely.

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