Wednesday, June 26, 2013

TV Report

Some brief notes on TV such and such.

:: I loved Hannibal and I'm glad to see it coming back.

:: I love Defiance. Finally, a science fiction series that I really feel invested in again. Love the characters, and it's only been getting better week after week.

:: I gave up on Bates Motel at some point. Great production design on that show, though.

:: I enjoyed the new Arrested Development episodes, but I didn't love them. I was never one of the people clamoring for it to come back. The availability of all the episodes at once caused the most idiotic debates I've ever seen about how to watch a TV show, as if watching all the episodes at once somehow invalidates the experience, and watching one episode every week is morally correct or some such shit. It was actually funnier than the episodes themselves. I liked the format they went with, where each episode more or less focused on one character and then some side plots rather than carrying every storyline through every episode, which is something the third season suffered with, because the story itself had more room to breathe rather than having to shoehorn every character into every episode. I concede, though, that the episodes folding back on themselves and catching us up with what everyone was doing for all the years we didn't see them made it hard to follow at times, and the payoff wasn't really there. Like I said, I enjoyed them, but I didn't love them.

My real complaints are that I still don't find Will Arnett funny, I'm still tired of all the shtick involving David Cross's character, and the sound mixing was surprisingly bad. But Ron Howard was hilarious as himself.

Maybe next season, when they're not doing catch-up so frantically and they're not quite so densely plotted, the characters will come through better. If there is a next season. Would it really be a tragedy if there weren't?

:: I'm also not really going to be mourning Futurama, now in its second final season. Not that I don't like the show, but I haven't really found many of the Comedy Central episodes that great.

:: The less said about the new Hell's Kitchen, the who the hell even cares anymore?

:: The editing on this season of MasterChef is terrible. Bad enough that Joe's growth into fully-realized human being last season has worn away and he's now just a walking gonad (tonight Becca's question for Joe was "What toy did Santa not bring you that makes you this?"), but the show is almost totally jettisoning the entire cooking aspect of the damn competition. The theory behind this season's editing seems to be why get caught up on things like cooking and food when we can have so much more time for setting up stupid rivalries and listening to the judges talk and talk and talk and talk about how this is an amateur competition before penalizing everyone for not having professional standards. Seriously, less of Joe, Graham and Gordon would be really nice here. We don't even see everyone have their food tasted anymore. There's one guy there, Lynn, who everyone thinks is a frontrunner and an amazing chef and who always gets picked first for every team, and because we've spent so little time actually seeing him cook or even (until recently) watching the judges try his food, I have literally no idea why everyone thinks he's so amazing. Maybe less time on trying to create a villain for the season and more cooking on your cooking show, you think?

:: Game of Thrones was amazing. Mostly. I find Ygritte incredibly annoying.

:: True Blood is back. It's just there, like always, carrying every bad plot line forward in little increments without any regard for trying to create coherent, compelling episodes. But Rutger Hauer is a lot of fun so far this season. Pretty much just watching for him right now. Otherwise, it's just out of habit and my continuing interest in seeing Joe Manganiello in various stages of undress. I'm almost as into his body as he is.

:: So damn glad The Venture Bros. is finally back on.

:: I've been catching up on Parenthood this month. I really like this show quite a bit. I'm into season four now, the show's most recent, and this cancer subplot is kind of kicking my ass because it makes me think about my sister. So I'm very emotionally involved. It's an emotionally involving show. I never bothered to watch it before, but I'm glad to see it's coming back because it turns out it's a show I really like.

:: Otherwise, still watching Dance Moms, Pretty Little Liars and the just-ended Veep. And probably some other stuff I'm not remembering.

Did anyone watch Under the Dome? Would you recommend it? I'm still on the fence there, but I see it's on and I'm just curious enough.


Tallulah Morehead said...

I completely agree about Hannibal and Bates Motel.

I read Under the Dome and liked it very much. So far, the series is excellent, though some changes have been made from the book, small ones so far. The pilot repeats at 9 pm on Sunday.

MC said...

As a Canadian with no legal window for seeing the new Venture Brothers, I am well and truly envious of you and every cable/satellite enabled American right now.

Nathan said...

I haven't watched all of the new Arrested Development episodes yet, largely because my wife wants to space them out. I really don't get the arguments about not putting them all out at once. With DVD box sets and On Demand, audiences these days are used to watching a whole bunch of episodes in a row.

I figure there's no reason to watch Under the Dome when I've already seen the Simpsons movie.