Parks & Rec was superb. Southland left me breathless. But the best new episode of anything I watched last week? Greek. It was, dare I say, charming?
I found myself laughing, and smiling, and getting a little sad. We saw all the characters go through a little something but it didn’t feel rushed or forced. Plus we got to learn more about Beaver, which is something I didn’t know I wanted, but I’m glad they did it. (Did we know his name was Walter?)
Anyone still watching this little gem? It used to be the darling of ABC Family, but now that no ones getting pregnant or kidnapped, they hardly talk about it. In fact this may be the final season. Get it in folks. You’re missing out on some truly strong television about an oft-forgotten population, college kids we didn’t meet in high school.
(Next chance to watch? Tonight, 9/8 central on ABC Family)
PS: Before you mention it, I don’t get DirecTV and therefore did not see the FNL finale. I’m guessing it would win hands down.
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Posted in Hump Day Update, tagged Barbara Walters, Better off Ted, Bryan Batt, David Letterman, Family Guy, Greek, Janeane Garofalo, John McCain, Mad Men, MTV, Regis Philbin, Survivor, Two And A Half Men on March 25, 2009|
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I’m trying to watch Better Off Ted again. I just don’t think it’s for me. It’s a little too cute for my taste. I can almost see it animated. 5 second review over, on to the updates.
- Barbara Walters is 79-years-old. It’s about time she retires. (Sidenote: Regis Philbin is also 75+. Both of them look a decade younger than John McCain.
- Mad Men update! Season 3 starts shooting in May and premieres in July. Everyone’s favorite closeted Italian Sal, played masterfully by Bryan Batt, said his character will probably never come out. “There’s going to be more torture in his story, “ he said. I can’t wait.
- Things are worse than I thought: Two and a Half Men just got renewed through 2012. Sweet jesus. Won’t they be at 3 men by then?
- I didn’t anything was off limits for Family Guy but apparently this was.
- And my favorite non-TV related link of the week: Lunch Bag Art. One awesome papa draws gorgeous pictures on his children’s lunch bags. I’m sure a book deal is fast approaching.
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Daylight Savings Time ends overnight. Last year I pondered over which shows I’d watch if I had more time in my day. This year, I find myself thinking about the ever important flashback episode.
It’s a pretty common device. Almost every show, especially sitcoms, has had a flashback episode or two at one point or another. As we turn back the clocks tonight, I thought I’d make a list of some of my favorites, in no particular order.
- The Simpsons, “Lisa’s First Word.” – To put it plainly, this episode is adorable while maintaining the irreverance and sharp quips that make this show what it is. This episode goes all the way back to the show’s 4th season and opens with the entire family trying to get Maggie to talk. The experience reminds Homer and Marge of Lisa’s first word, a touching tale of a jealous toddler Bart, and a pre-balding Homer. There are smiles, and laughs and at the heart of it, a really great family story. What keeps The Simpsons so timely and popular is that they never seem to lose sight of that.
- Gilmore Girls, “Dear Emily & Richard” – This episode from the Gilmore Girls third season finally shared the untold story of Lorelai’s pregnancy and how the initial rift between mother and daughter began. Some flashback episodes can seem kind of out of place in the story arc but series creator and writer Amy Sherman-Palladino did a fantastic job marrying the past, present and future into a really complex and beautiful episode. In my opinion, it’s one of the best in the series.
- The L Word, “Looking Back” – While on a weekend road trip to Palm Springs, the ladies decide to share their first love/coming out/first love lost stories. On a show that can be deathly serious, this episode was surprisingly light and one of the funnier ones of the first season. It also started a wonderful tradition of L Word travel episodes which are now notoriously good spirited and offer a nice break from the serious lady drama. (You can check out Alice’s coming out story here. And yes, they are singing Indigo Girls in the car. I don’t know why you expected anything less.)
There are so many more episodes I want to highlight but this post would go on forever. The short list includes that one episode of Prison Break where they show how everyone landed in the big house; my very favorite episode of Greek, ” Freshman Daze” where we see just what drove Cappie & Evan apart; and the episode of West Wing where when we learn how the gang got involved with the Bartlett campaign. Pure magic!
Anyone else have a favorite flashback episode? Let ‘er rip in the comments.
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(Hey folks, glad you found this post. We’re having some moving problems. Thanks for staying with us during the switch.)
So it’s Saturday and I’m starting a new feature. That’s what new blogs are for folks.
This one’s been on my mind since a fateful episode of 30 Rock when the cast was playing everyone’s favorite game: Marry, Bop, or Kill. Bop of course being the delightful euphemism for that unsavory F-Word.
The idea fell into the recesses of my mind until Defamer began running a similar feature called Watch, Tivo, or Kill. I plan on doing them one better and sticking with the game’s original title.
Everyweek, I’ll provide the characters, episodes, shows, actors, or actresses, I want to Marry, Bop or Kill for the week. How do you make love to a television episode? I haven’t figured that out just yet. One step at a time.
Here’s this week’s results:
Marry: Seth Meyers of SNL
Meyers has been head writer for SNL since 2005 and now he’s finally getting the credit he so rightfully deserves. People are quick to champion his work on the political sketches this season, but the non-political stuff has been super under-rated. Mark Wahlberg talks to animals? The Boat Ride? There’s some solid work being lost in the shuffle.
Meyers is also taking home my first Marry title because I caught an old episode of SNL this week and he did a remarkable job as Anderson Cooper. Anyone who can pull off that faint, elitist accent gets a vote in my book.
Bop: This week’s episode of Greek, “The Popular Vote”
As I’ve mentioned previously, this show is very well-done and is one of the better teen/college comedies on television…ever. However, this week’s episode was surprising, witty, full of pop culture references and nothing if not slightly dramatic. I was watching it on my DVR and kept checking how much time was left because I seriously didn’t want it to end. If you’re not watching Greek get over yourself and give it a chance. The writing is getting sharper and sharper every week and I’ll be sad to see this cycle end on October 28.
Kill: Baseball & Political Debates
Two of my current favorites were pre-empted this week due to politcal debates and baseball playoffs. Are both important? I suppose so. Would I have rather watched Private Practice? Heck yes.
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Posted in Reviews, tagged ABC Family, Greek on May 7, 2008|
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My blog partner wrote about her odd fascination with Greek shortly after its premiere, but even with her ringing endorsement I didn’t tune in. Teen (and 20-something) dramedies require you to know the characters. It is not easy to come in without backstory.
But I finally watched the popular ABC Family show last night with the help of my friend Annie who caught me up on backstory as needed. It also helped that I watch a lot of ABC Family and see the commercials 5 or 6 times a day.
My first impressions? This show doesn’t get enough credit. It’s by no means extremely innovative and there were some bizzare casting choices (Geico Guy as Mr. Cartwright?) but it is entertaining, witty and the actors look age appropriate. That’s something few teen+ dramas can boast (cough, cough, Dawson’s Creek, cough, cough).
Few shows portray college well. It’s a fragile time with lots of juxtaposition. You want new friends but want to cling to your old ones, you want independence but it’s hard to deny funds from mom and pop, etc. Everyone is seeking this “perfect college experience,” but in most cases it doesn’t exist, and if it does, it’s impossible to define.
For some reason, TV writers and producers can’t seem to wrap there heads around the complex combination of emotion, material goods, alcohol, friends and family. While Greek isn’t perfect, it’s one of the better portrayals of this sentiment.
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There are a few cable stations that I try to avoid. I’m not big on Spike, not really emotionally in tune with Lifetime (however Oxygen has its wide array of acceptable programming…sort of), and I’m certainly not interested in the Sci-Fi channel. Among this list used to be ABC Family. I’m not 12, so that was obvious.
However, with the recent addition of “Greek” I’ve eased up and started tuning in. “Greek” is your typical sugar-coated show about college life, specifcally about Greek life on campus. It’s funny to me though, because there’s something different about Greek and I think it’s in the relationships. The stereotyping makes me woozy and definitely makes the show a little more ridiculous, and a little less worth watching. But, for some reason, when it’s on I watch it.
– there are a number of funny, subtle references that are appealing
– the characters, albeit a little melodramatic tend to be pretty realistic and funny
– the plot progresses
– the representation of greek life is very humorous, and even more so when realistic
– the music’s really good
– there’s a kid who plays a hardcore southern, religious type… that’s always good for TV
– cappie’s pretty hot and a good character
I’m sure the other half of this blog will consider resigning when she reads this, but I’ve got to admit, if you’re interested in a little young adult love drama (shaking my head with each word), then check out Greek! Hey, the pilot’s free on iTunes!
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