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GreenCine Movie Talk
TV
By popular demand, a forum devoted to Mr. Philo T. Farnsworth's remarkable invention.
93

Fall TV, 2007 Edition
Topic by: Battie
Posted: May 29, 2007 - 7:37 PM PDT
Last Reply: March 10, 2008 - 3:29 PM PDT

page  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10      prev | next
author topic: Fall TV, 2007 Edition
Belgand
post #161  on October 17, 2007 - 5:38 PM PDT  
> On October 16, 2007 - 5:45 PM PDT Battie wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> *sobs* I couldn't remember the name of that show that never was. It was brilliant, and I'm ticked off that Sci-Fi chose to produce crappy "Original" movies over a truly original animated series.
> ---------------------------------

Seriously, why do they even make those terrible things? Wouldn't it be much, much cheaper to just run one of the movies they already have rights to or one of the vast array of tv shows that they only seem capable of showing in disjointed, unexpected, day-long blocks for one day before retiring them again?

Do people really watch Mansquito or whatever new crap-fest they produce? If so, how do I find out which of these people are Neilsen so I can go hurt them enough to make them stop.

Sci-Fi has a serious lack of good, original shows and always seems to drop the good ones whenever they do happen upon them (I miss you Dresden Files, even if the books are vastly better... plus my girlfriend liked the show). Given the otherwise lack of decent sci-fi programming (aside from recent years when it became trendy and forced us to endure all sorts of uninspired sci-fi lite programs) they really need to do it themselves. Instead they've decided to focus on terrible movies, wrestling, and when they do manage to put out their own shows they try as hard as possible to distance them from actual sci-fi in order to achieve a greater cross-over audience (like the terrible, terrible Eureka, or those lame ghost shows, or those lame reality shows). They only rarely produce any legitimate or original sci-fi content basically just BSG (which is being run into the ground and, which by nature of being successful they conclude demands a lame spin-off) and rebroadcasting Doctor Who.

Way to go Sci-Fi. You've got 168 hours of programming a week and you can only manage to actually produce one hour of decent, original content.

Battie
post #162  on October 17, 2007 - 5:53 PM PDT  
> On October 17, 2007 - 5:38 PM PDT Belgand wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Seriously, why do they even make those terrible things? Wouldn't it be much, much cheaper to just run one of the movies they already have rights to or one of the vast array of tv shows that they only seem capable of showing in disjointed, unexpected, day-long blocks for one day before retiring them again?
>
> Do people really watch Mansquito or whatever new crap-fest they produce? If so, how do I find out which of these people are Neilsen so I can go hurt them enough to make them stop.
>

I admit, I've watched a HANDFUL of their original shows. I think Painkiller Jane (the movie, not the awful series) was one. Return of the Living Dead 4 & 5, which made me want to off myself. And a few others. But mostly it's all horrible, horrible, horrible junk. Please do hurt them.

> Sci-Fi has a serious lack of good, original shows and always seems to drop the good ones whenever they do happen upon them (I miss you Dresden Files, even if the books are vastly better... plus my girlfriend liked the show). Given the otherwise lack of decent sci-fi programming (aside from recent years when it became trendy and forced us to endure all sorts of uninspired sci-fi lite programs) they really need to do it themselves. Instead they've decided to focus on terrible movies, wrestling, and when they do manage to put out their own shows they try as hard as possible to distance them from actual sci-fi in order to achieve a greater cross-over audience (like the terrible, terrible Eureka, or those lame ghost shows, or those lame reality shows). They only rarely produce any legitimate or original sci-fi content basically just BSG (which is being run into the ground and, which by nature of being successful they conclude demands a lame spin-off) and rebroadcasting Doctor Who.
>
> Way to go Sci-Fi. You've got 168 hours of programming a week and you can only manage to actually produce one hour of decent, original content.
> ---------------------------------

A) I like Eureka. It is sci-fi lite, but it's still good.
B) There's a BSG spin-off?
C) America is getting dumber, network execs want cheaper = ghost shows and reality tv.

:D
hamano
post #163  on October 18, 2007 - 9:14 AM PDT  
Another Wed. another Pushing Daisies...

Kissing through saran wrap. I saw something very similar, but performed a bit farther south, on a Public Service safe-sex video starring Annie Sprinkle re. how to use a dental dam.

So is this show a veiled examination of post-'80s/post-AIDS gay sex life? Is this why the "heroine" is named Chuck? They sure use a lot of white powder on Ned, making him look like a cross between PeeWee Herman and Grandpa Munster.

The Chinese writing on the window behind Emerson's desk says "Royal House of Ribs" but curiously it faces inward, not outward. Someone in the street would see it written backwards. What's with that?
Belgand
post #164  on October 18, 2007 - 1:14 PM PDT  
> On October 18, 2007 - 9:14 AM PDT hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Another Wed. another Pushing Daisies...

> So is this show a veiled examination of post-'80s/post-AIDS gay sex life? Is this why the "heroine" is named Chuck? They sure use a lot of white powder on Ned, making him look like a cross between PeeWee Herman and Grandpa Munster.
> ---------------------------------

On Dead Like Me the female protagonist was named George (short for Georgia). Evidently it's just a quirk of Bryan Fuller's that he likes women with explainable, but unlikely names typically associated with men. I also notice that on PD doubled names are very common, hence we have Charlotte "Chuck" Charles.
hamano
post #165  on October 19, 2007 - 4:05 AM PDT  
> On October 18, 2007 - 1:14 PM PDT Belgand wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> On Dead Like Me the female protagonist was named George (short for Georgia). Evidently it's just a quirk of Bryan Fuller's that he likes women with explainable, but unlikely names typically associated with men.

And why does he have this "quirk"... I just think that politically (not that there's a lot of politics woven into this show) this show is pretty gay. Aesthetically there's a very strong gay sensibility at work. Since Will&Grace ended I think there's still some doubt how commercial overtly gay characters could be on primetime, but shows that have a strong gay bent have been flourishing (like Ugly Betty).

> I also notice that on PD doubled names are very common, hence we have Charlotte "Chuck" Charles.

THAT I don't have a good explanation for... it's sorta icky. Treacly alliteration just to make Jim Dale's narration dance trippingly off his tongue? Ew. I mean, "Boutique Travel Travel Boutique"? Come on!

OK, I've come up with a good explanation. It's all a metaphor for living a double life. Get it? DOUBLE life! People who are in the closet! Ned has a SECRET! Come to think of it there are lots of "doubles" in the show, not just names. Chuck's aunts. Emerson's pistols and hand-knit pistol cozies. What else comes in twos? BREASTS, as we're constantly being reminded by Messrs. Fuller and Sonnenfeld and their wardrobe choices for the actresses. Now it's obvious... In the early '80s, getting AIDS was pretty much a death sentence. Death was final. Now if you get infected with HIV and you're lucky enough to live in a country with advanced medical care you can get the drug cocktail (Ned's power) and get a second chance at life. But be careful! Use protection!
Battie
post #166  on October 19, 2007 - 8:05 AM PDT  
> On October 19, 2007 - 4:05 AM PDT hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> And why does he have this "quirk"... I just think that politically (not that there's a lot of politics woven into this show) this show is pretty gay. Aesthetically there's a very strong gay sensibility at work. Since Will&Grace ended I think there's still some doubt how commercial overtly gay characters could be on primetime, but shows that have a strong gay bent have been flourishing (like Ugly Betty).
> ---------------------------------

It is quite gay. Ned is very gay (which is what I thought when I saw him as an adult in the first ep). And his 'romantic' feelings for Chuck in the first episode seemed more like deification of his first love than adult romantic inclination (with all its messy insistence on sexual attraction). Chuck is the 'perfect' woman, as opposed to what's her face (the waitress), who embodies a more carnal, gritty version of womanhood. And now that Chuck is unobtainable, he'll never have to face his complete lack of heterosexuality!

(Can anyone say Judy Garland?)

Of course, in the case of Ugly Betty, it's more or less stereotypical gay culture propped up for heterosexual amusement. Though I think the gay characters get the best lines. They're also very one-dimensional (though not surprising given that they're secondary/background characters).
underdog
post #167  on October 25, 2007 - 3:08 PM PDT  
Forget what's on TV now - look what's coming to DVD in a month! The first Futurama movie!

Futurama the Movie: Bender's Big Score

Well, I'm excited. The first of the new Futuramas they've been working on for awhile. I never understood why Fox canceled they show. That feeling's been vindicated since it's done gangbuster ratings in reruns on cable and in DVD sales. (Then again it's Fox, who knows what they're thinking half the time.)
Battie
post #168  on October 26, 2007 - 8:47 PM PDT  
I'm not even bothering with Bionic Woman anymore. Even Katee Sackhoff, my straight-girl crush, isn't worth the horrendous effort. *sneers*

I still find Reaper and Supernatural amusing, the latter more than the former now. Maybe it's the fact that the humor in Supernatural is more rare (and often a bit tongue-in-cheek) than in Reaper, therefore more appreciated? I do admit, I find the store antics (or lack thereof) highly amusing. I was in WM today (otherwise known as Satan's Company) and had to run up to the CS desk. As I waited in line, I thought on how many ways WM employees figured out how to avoid dealing with customers, and working in general. I was actually kind of amazed at the creativity that went into it (at least from what I can recall).

This is hard to believe, but the spin-off of Gray's Anatomy is even more chick-a-fied than GA. I'm not sure, yet, if I like it or dislike it.

I actually like Journeyman. It'll never have a place in my dvd collection, but it's worth watching on tv. I'd probably like it better if it went the Cold Case route. Ie, music from the era the episode is associated with. But that'd probably take too much effort. >_>
hamano
post #169  on October 27, 2007 - 6:14 AM PDT  
> On October 26, 2007 - 8:47 PM PDT Battie wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I still find Reaper and Supernatural amusing, the latter more than the former now.
> I do admit, I find the store antics (or lack thereof) highly amusing.

Speaking of Big Box Store Antics, I went to NBC.com Rewind and I got caught up on most of the full episodes of Chuck. I think I like Chuck better. Once you get past the really DUMB setup, even dumber than Reaper, the acting and the dynamics between the characters kinda pull you in. And it has really good fight choreography and fights between really pretty actresses, thanks to McG, so for me it has the eye-candy factor that Reaper lacks.

The Rewind section has Full Episodes for most of My Name is Earl, Journeyman, and The Office.
underdog
post #170  on October 27, 2007 - 12:00 PM PDT  
I was still able to download an episode of My Name is Earl from iTunes - I guess older episodes they still have the rights to. Can you only watch episodes on NBC.com via streaming, or are you able to buy them for download, like you could on iTunes?

Oh well, good thing I have tivo workimg for me next week while I'm traveling.

Anyone watching Tell Me You Love Me on cable? It's getting better and better (plus, there's still plenty of sex!) Good acting all around. I haven't always been in the mood for it but it's getting good.
hamano
post #171  on October 27, 2007 - 7:47 PM PDT  
> On October 27, 2007 - 12:00 PM PDT underdog wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Can you only watch episodes on NBC.com via streaming, or are you able to buy them for download, like you could on iTunes?
> Oh well, good thing I have tivo workimg for me next week while I'm traveling.

I like NBC's streaming... it's pretty smooth although the short but repetitive CM spots can get annoying after a while. It's fine for catching up on TV episodes.

If you want to buy them they've gone over from iTunes to Amazon.com's Unbox store. You can download them to play on a Windoze computer or on a Tivo.
underdog
post #172  on October 27, 2007 - 9:06 PM PDT  
But not for the Mac. :-(

Might have to try the Tivo thing one of these days...
hamano
post #173  on October 28, 2007 - 2:49 AM PDT  
Journeyman is actually pretty good. It's pretty lame as far as "time travel" goes because Dan never gets to go very far. He only travels within his life span and only into the past. Meanwhile he has to juggle his complicated marriage (he's married to his brother's ex), his kid and his job as a reporter at a financially troubled newspaper.

It kinda reminds me of that show John Doe because Dan's got this awesome power and so far he's only able to do little projects in and around San Francisco. Then in the most recent episode he becomes complicit in a hijacking scheme and seems like he's gonna put some of those criminal funds to good personal use? I guess Earl Hickey would say that's Karma.

I don't know if you can call this show Science Fiction because it doesn't deal with time paradox issues... looks like you can change the past with impunity and actually that's Dan's new "job"... when he returns to his own time the lives he changed didn't seem to have had any negative effects on the timeline, only good. So basically Dan is acting as a sort of "angel".... The acting and directing are pretty good. I noticed Laura Innes who played that lame lesbian doctor on ER directed one of the episodes.

I hope this show doesn't degenerate into some secular version of Touched by an Angel, but it COULD very easily head in that direction. Touched by an Angel for the post-Google generation maybe.
Battie
post #174  on October 28, 2007 - 1:42 PM PDT  
Ho hum, Californication is losing its appeal for me, too. The season ends tomorrow, however (though I'm behind on several eps). The show is excellent for lines and comedy, but when it starts lingering over the more serious issues in Hank's life, I get incredibly, drop-dead bored. But I suppose if it didn't have those moments, it'd just be dismissed as brain-dead comedy.

I might just skip watching the last few episodes.
Battie
post #175  on October 29, 2007 - 4:28 AM PDT  
Samantha Who is very cute. It seems kind of scathing of Sex and the City and its clones. Christina Applegate looks strange though, not sure why.
hamano
post #176  on October 29, 2007 - 8:42 AM PDT  
> On October 29, 2007 - 4:28 AM PDT Battie wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Samantha Who is very cute. It seems kind of scathing of Sex and the City and its clones.

It's a really OLD idea, "person gets amnesia, has a second chance at life" but it's sweet and funny. I bet that guy in Journeyman would be really jealous of how conveniently Samantha can time her flashbacks (the coffeshop, the boob swelling rival...)

> Christina Applegate looks strange though, not sure why.

She looks like she has cellulite on her face, which is fairly NORMAL on a woman her age who hasn't had work done. I'm not complaining too much. I've always thought she looked cute and she spent a lot of time wearing slinky clothes or just underwear in the first two episodes. Her face looks a bit older than 35 though, which is her real age.

The funniest things about this show...

1) The Sam character has the same mannerisms and body language as one of my daughter's best friends.

2) The guy who played Tuvok the African-Vulcan on Star Trek Enterprise plays a DOORMAN and he doesn't look too happy about it. He seems to be caught up in one of those nightmare Holodeck episodes...

ABC's video stream still won't play smoothly in full screen mode. Grr...
Belgand
post #177  on October 29, 2007 - 5:56 PM PDT  
> On October 26, 2007 - 8:47 PM PDT Battie wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I actually like Journeyman. It'll never have a place in my dvd collection, but it's worth watching on tv. I'd probably like it better if it went the Cold Case route. Ie, music from the era the episode is associated with. But that'd probably take too much effort. >_>
> ---------------------------------

I really dislike Journeyman. Not because it's inherently terrible, but because it's so bland. Not to mention the really ham-handed moments. Like how they consistently try to shoehorn in mention of the city or use of notable background elements (I swear some landmark was in the background of every single outdoor shot in the pilot). The music in particular bothers me. My girlfriend watches it and I can always tell when he jumps even when I'm in the other room. Why is that song by Marcy Playground coming out of the living room really loudly? Must be he jumped back to '97 and oh, look they're in SoMa and someone is working on some start-up. It just screams "Look, look at this stereotype! Everything is as you think you remember it was in '97!". I swear, every single jump is immediately followed by some song to try to drive it home. It just feels sloppy really.

As for the show, well, it's just uninteresting. I think the comparison to a secular Touched By an Angel is very apt. He jumps back, he helps someone, meh. If anything it's derivative of the same sort of sci-fi lite that Quantum Leap did years ago. Kind of the TV equivalent of Adult Contemporary radio, soft, inoffensive, and something where you don't have to pay too much attention.

Finally, while this is constantly an issue with TV and movies I'm amazed at his house. Ok, it's set in San Francisco (but is apparently unwilling to go any further from downtown than SoMa or lower North Beach) so how does a reporter at a allegedly financially shaky newspaper have a house like this? In the suburbs in another state maybe, but here that's got to be at least 3 million easily. I mean, the guy even has a kid, no way he can afford that. Same goes for the giant loft on Bionic Woman. If she was really working as a bartender in this town and having to support her sister I wouldn't expect much above a one-bedroom in-law out in the Avenues rather than what looks like a $2,500/month loft.
hamano
post #178  on October 30, 2007 - 6:17 AM PDT  
> On October 29, 2007 - 5:56 PM PDT Belgand wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> As for the show, well, it's just uninteresting. I think the comparison to a secular Touched By an Angel is very apt.

I think one of the more interesting aspects of the show is its blandness. The plot and characters have very little ambition for coolness; they've set the bar really low. You're right about Quantum Leap and there were other shows like John Doe and The Pretender that were even more "sf lite". Add doses of Touched by an Angel and Charmed and you've got Journeyman. Maybe it's SF for Thirtysomething fans, the way it seems to focus on the relationships between the characters so much. Basically it's about two brothers and the two (or three if you count the doctor lady) women in their lives. That's where this show goes a bit beyond the comic-book male relationships that were the treatments in shows like Quantum Leap.

The show's in trouble though if they start just ripping thinly disguised (and old) news headlines for ALL of the flashback plots. Either make them completely original, or make it actually historical (like the earthquake). I hate those "ripped from the headlines" plots they use in shows like Law and Order and this show's recent episodes with the "mystery hijacker" and the "UNAbomber"....

I'm looking forward to the episode where Dan time-slips while in the middle of hot dirty baby-making sex with Katie, and ending up (conveniently) in some nudist colony of the past where Livia is waiting to "guide him" on his next emission. Guess who is also there? Brother Jack doing an "undercover" investigation, and a younger Katie reporting her first-hand experience of the nudist lifestyle...

> Finally, while this is constantly an issue with TV and movies I'm amazed at his house. Ok, it's set in San Francisco (but is apparently unwilling to go any further from downtown than SoMa or lower North Beach) so how does a reporter at a allegedly financially shaky newspaper have a house like this?

They got it the same way the sisters in Charmed got the same (or very similar) house? Inheritance... or magic?

Another amazing house is the ground floor of the parents' house in Samantha Who? which the mom kept saying needed an "extreme makeover" in the first episode. The rooms seem to be HUGE! I know it's a set, but why make them so outlandishly BIG? Maybe it's Samantha's brain damage... it makes everything look bigger? Her boyfriend's apartment (why does she still have all her clothing there?) in the city is also unbelievably spacious.

The living quarters in Pushing Daisies and How I Met Your Mother look a reasonable size. But Joy's trailer home in My Name is Earl looks pretty unbelievably huge, even if it was a double-wide.
hamano
post #179  on October 30, 2007 - 6:26 AM PDT  
Another funny thing about Journeyman... Kevin McKidd who plays Dan is Scottish and probably speaks a nice sexy brogue in real life. But if you listen to Dan's American English with your eyes closed, he sounds (to me) just like Ray Romano! He LOOKS like he should have a deeper, sexier voice but he doesn't! I bet if you youtube bits from Everybody Loves Raymond and Journeyman and listened to them you'll hear what I'm talking about. McKidd also LOOKS older than the actor who plays his supposedly older brother Jack. Do you know any siblings in real life where the younger one looks older than an older one?
Battie
post #180  on October 30, 2007 - 10:36 AM PDT  
> On October 29, 2007 - 5:56 PM PDT Belgand wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I really dislike Journeyman. Not because it's inherently terrible, but because it's so bland. Not to mention the really ham-handed moments. Like how they consistently try to shoehorn in mention of the city or use of notable background elements (I swear some landmark was in the background of every single outdoor shot in the pilot). The music in particular bothers me. My girlfriend watches it and I can always tell when he jumps even when I'm in the other room. Why is that song by Marcy Playground coming out of the living room really loudly? Must be he jumped back to '97 and oh, look they're in SoMa and someone is working on some start-up. It just screams "Look, look at this stereotype! Everything is as you think you remember it was in '97!". I swear, every single jump is immediately followed by some song to try to drive it home. It just feels sloppy really.
>

It is pretty bland. I like it for the moment, but I can it wearing thin pretty fast.

I've NEVER noticed the music, not once. I'm behind by a few eps, though. It always seems rather lacking in music, especially when he flashes back. Or maybe the music is so bland I don't notice.

As for Cold Case, they tend to have a lot of varied music (and I particularly like the 'old' cases), especially dependent on the characters. The music usually suits the scene and the time period, it wasn't 'just' popular back then.

> As for the show, well, it's just uninteresting. I think the comparison to a secular Touched By an Angel is very apt. He jumps back, he helps someone, meh. If anything it's derivative of the same sort of sci-fi lite that Quantum Leap did years ago. Kind of the TV equivalent of Adult Contemporary radio, soft, inoffensive, and something where you don't have to pay too much attention.
>

Well, some tv shows are pulling back into the plot-per-episode formula, rather than an ARC formula, so I'm not surprised.

> Finally, while this is constantly an issue with TV and movies I'm amazed at his house. Ok, it's set in San Francisco (but is apparently unwilling to go any further from downtown than SoMa or lower North Beach) so how does a reporter at a allegedly financially shaky newspaper have a house like this? In the suburbs in another state maybe, but here that's got to be at least 3 million easily. I mean, the guy even has a kid, no way he can afford that. Same goes for the giant loft on Bionic Woman. If she was really working as a bartender in this town and having to support her sister I wouldn't expect much above a one-bedroom in-law out in the Avenues rather than what looks like a $2,500/month loft.
>
> ---------------------------------


*snickers* They ought to just set shows like that in poorer cities (like Dallas!). I know you can get flats or apartments pretty much within walking distance of downtown here for less than a grand a month (some I've seen advertised were less than $600/month). Of course, the truly nice areas are unimaginably expensive.

Maybe they just don't think about how much things like that cost in real life to people with normal jobs?
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