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2009 Fall Preview – Thursday

courtesy FX Network

courtesy FX Network

Thursday

Much like Wednesdays, my Thursday schedule is packed full, with 12.5 hours of programming. Unlike Wednesday, I don’t expect many of Thursday’s shows to wither on the vine.

ABCGrey’s Anatomy and Private Practice stay in the same slots as last year, with Grey’s premiering tonight and Practice joining on October 1st. The new entry from the alphabet network is an apparent attempt to give us Lost fans something to care about until the final season premieres in January. Based on Robert J. Sawyer’s novel, FlashForward’s premise is certainly interesting–a shared vision of the future causes people to question the concept of destiny and whether or not they can change their paths. I’m mostly intrigued by the talented cast, which includes Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare in Love), Courtney B. Vance (Law & Order), Dominic Monaghan (Lost), Sonya Walger (Lost), and John Cho (Harold & Kumar), to name a few. I’ve heard the show doesn’t delve quite deep enough for some early critics, but I think that means the show has a much better chance at winning a large audience than Lost ever did, with its complex mythology. Look for an in-depth review of the premiere episode that aired tonight once I get a chance to watch it this weekend.

CBS – A seriously awesome trio of returning series cover the CBS Thursday lineup including the 19th edition of Survivor, this time in Samoa. CSI keeps its standard spot on the schedule, and now The Mentalist joins in for its sophomore season. At first, I was pissed that they moved Jane and the gang to such a crowded night, but now I see the genius. Private Practice is no match for The Mentalist, FOX doesn’t play in the 10/9 time slot, and Leno doesn’t stand a chance. I can see the CBS press releases now, celebrating their huge ratings victory.

Comedy Central – My love of Tosh.0 is no secret. I’m thrilled Comedy Central ordered more episodes, and I’m confident that Daniel Tosh will continue to bring the funny. There certainly is no shortage of moronic web video to fill his show. New episodes begin on October 8th.

CWI hated Twilight. The only reason I watched the entire movie is so no one could accuse me of giving up before “the best part”. As far as I’m concerned, the best part would have been if vampire guy had let the girl get crushed in the school parking lot 20 minutes in. When I first read the synopsis for The Vampire Diaries, I thought it would probably just be Twilight: The Series, but I’m thrilled to see these vamps don’t sparkle or play baseball in the rain. The series premiered on September 10th, but it’s not too complicated to join midstream.

FX – What’s the funniest current show on television? That’s a tough question to answer, but for me I think the answer is It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which has now entered its fifth season. Based on the premiere last week, it’s lost none of its edge.  FX attempts to round out the rest of the hour starting October 29th, when The League premieres. I’m not sure what the title implies for you, but I was surprised to find out this show focuses not on superheroes or villains, but a group of guys and their fantasy football league. It certainly sounds more believable than last year’s Testees, and I have faith that FX wouldn’t buy into just any old sitcom.

FOXFringe baby! The first season left us wanting so much more, so I was thrilled when FOX had the brains to renew this kickass trip through the multiverse. If you’re interested in all kinds of details on the show, I recommend a trip to fringetelevision.com, While you’re there, be sure to keep an eye out for Adam Morgan’s weekly episode recaps, which are great for catching up if your DVR screwed you and you missed one.

LifetimeProject Runway premiered back in August, and continues airing its nearly-lost season on its new network. There are some seriously talented designers this year, and I would definitely recommend tuning in, especially now that some of the really shitty folks are gone. Personally, I’m looking forward to the next season, which will be able to air on time now that Lifetime is through with all the legal battles it took to win the show.

NBC – Joel McHale stars in Community, the only new show being added to NBC’s Thursday lineup–filling the hole left by last year’s dreadful Kath & Kim. The show premiered last week and my full review can be found here. Returning series include SNL Weekend Update Thursday, Parks & Recreation, The Office, and 30 Rock. Everything premiered last week, with the exception of 30 Rock, which joins the schedule on October 15th after SNL transitions off the schedule.

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September 24, 2009 Posted by | Banished, Comedy, Drama, Internet, New Series, Premiere, Reality, Renewed, Scifi, Technology, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 2009 Fall Preview – Thursday

Fringe Episode 18: Midnight

Tonight’s episode of Fringe wasn’t bad, altough I thought the ‘maneater’ storyline was a bit tired. In addition, the big reveal at the end of the episode just didn’t seem all that surprising to me. However, we got a slew of hilarious Walter-isms.

Walter’s obsession with discussions of food while examining dead bodies is something I find very amusing for some reason.  Tonight, when observing the exposed spinal column of the first victim, Walter told Peter it reminded him of shrimp cocktail.  As if that wasn’t enough, Walter also took the opportunity to let Peter know that shrimp didn’t really have big vein that people normally remove, it’s actually the intestinal tract.  Yummy.

Later, while examining another crime scene, Walter discovered a bottle of benzyl alcohol, which he quickly pointed out is normally used as a local anesthetic, although his preferred use is as a mouthwash.

The biggest laugh Walter gave me tonight though was his use of The Clapper during the scene in the lab when they figured out where to find their killer.

In addition to comic Walter, we did get a sincere moment when he posited that if we do have souls, then we must allow for the possibility that there is still time for redemption. I believe this is what inspired the video confession at the end of the show.

While not intentionally hilarious, Peter got a big laugh out of me when he was walking around the nightclub with his infrared camera. I thought he looked just like Egon Spengler walking around the New York Public Library.
PeterEgon

The pleasant surprise of the night was Astrid, who is really starting to hold her own with the others after so many episodes as barely more than an extra. Her advice to Peter in the lab was classic, “When you finally meet a nice girl, I would avoid bring her home for as long as possible.” Adam Morgan did a great interview with Jasika Nicole, who plays Astrid, over at fringetelevision.com. It’s definitely worth the read.  In fact, something she says near the end of the interview got me thinking tonight when Astrid covered for Walter’s fatal mistake in the lab.  Maybe she is just protecting him, but perhaps Astrid has some reason to lie for Walter that we just don’t know about yet.

April 28, 2009 Posted by | Drama, Science, Scifi, Television | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Fringe Episode 17: Bad Dreams

After an ill-timed hiatus and a so-so return episode last week, Fringe is back on the tracks with this week’s Bad Dreams.

No need for a full recap here, though if you’re looking for that I would recommend a trip to fringetelevision.com for everything you didn’t know you wanted to know about the show.  Plus cool posts like this clip of The Observer at a Yankees game.

Overall, I think this was a return to the kind of episode that got me hooked on Fringe to begin with.  We had a real life-and-death mystery that was directly related to Olivia, and while we got some answers by the end of the episode, we were ultimately left wanting to know more.  The same thing happened with Walter this week–We got to see Walter get way too excited about the prospect of seeing Pippin on Broadway, and we also learned that he was directly involved with the experiments that were done on Olivia (Olive) as a child.

I understand that FOX decided to bench their best new show for two months so they could give us two hours of American Idol on Tuesdays, but I think it was a mistake.  I mean, at what point do you start to reduce the amount of time devoted to your flagging juggernaut in favor of an up and coming show with more promise than anything you’ve premiered since House in 2004?  At this point, I hope FOX doesn’t make a big mistake and cancel the show.  We’ll find out for sure when they host their upfronts on May 18, and I’m optimistic considering the list of shows with worse ratings that have already been renewed at FOX (Hell’s Kitchen, Family Guy, The Simpsons) and other networks (Heroes, Private Practice, The Office).  

Either way, I’m not too worried. If the show is cancelled, I think J.J. Abrams will find another way to reveal the truth of The Pattern to the fans.

April 25, 2009 Posted by | Science, Scifi, Technology, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments