thoughts on pop culture

Fall Premiere Week is dead, the networks just won’t admit it

Michael Schneider wrote this great article for Variety explaining exactly why the broadcast networks’ model for Fall Premiere Week is long overdue for cancellation. I can’t state the case any better than Schneider, so I’ll simply add this:

Incredible Cable Shows that debuted on a non-traditional schedule

  • Damages
  • Rescue Me
  • Leverage
  • Mad Men
  • Royal Pains
  • Raising the Bar
  • True Blood
  • Breaking Bad
  • Nip/Tuck
  • Burn Notice
  • Monk
  • Psych
  • In Plain Sight
  • The Tudors
  • Weeds

September 11, 2009 Posted by | Comedy, Drama, New Series, News, Premiere, Renewed, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Fall Premiere Week is dead, the networks just won’t admit it

Weeds Season 5 Episode 1: Wonderful, Wonderful

Weeds is back, and in many ways it’s like it never left.


This isn’t a full recap, but there are some spoilers included below.


The opener begins right where we left off last year, with Nancy sitting at Esteban’s desk waiting for his response to her pregnancy announcement. I think it’s important to note that we are continuing the story that began last year rather than starting over. I know several people who felt like season four took too long to get going, and I think this tactic will ensure that isn’t the case with season five.


The scenes with Celia being held captive by her daughter Quinn and boyfriend Rudolfo were by far the weakest of the episode. Celia makes an obvious play to turn Rudolfo against Quinn that seemed beneath the normally inventive writing for this show. At least the kidnapping gave us some hilarious dialogue as they attempted to get someone in Celia’s address book to pay ransom.


Back at the homestead, the boys all decide they’re going to go grow pot in the Cleveland National Forest outside San Diego. Nancy arrives back in time to insist that Shane go to her sister’s house instead, setting up both a great fight and an upcoming guest spot from Jennifer Jason Leigh as Nancy’s sister Jill Price-Gray.


The action is definitely in full swing already this year, and the closing of the episode underscores this for us. Nancy is enjoying a frappuccino and a flashmob (along with Tequan Richmond) at the mall when she spots Cesar watching her. I have a feeling we need to catch our breath now, because this season looks to be a fast-paced ride.


That great writing I mentioned? Here are my two favorite lines from the premiere, and no surprise they both came from Doug.

  • Doug, referring to Nancy’s pregnancy – “She’s got a muffin in the muff.”
  • Doug, in response to a ransom request for Celia – “That cunt can lick my balls…Tell her I said hi.”

June 8, 2009 Posted by | Comedy, Drama, Premiere, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Weeds Season 5 Episode 1: Wonderful, Wonderful

Summer TV Preview Part 1: Monday

In the past, I wouldn’t have wasted my time with a summer preview. In fact, I have historically used the summer to catch up on movies and a couple tv shows I missed that are now on DVD. Times are different now though. I’m not sure exactly why, but the networks have finally realized that our televisions work all year round and not just in the fall and spring. In the spirit of their realization, I’m offering a summer preview in five parts.




ABC – I’m not a fan of The Bachelorette, and I would rather watch classic game show reruns than new series Here Come the Newlyweds. However, on July 20th at 10/9c, ABC is bringing us some serious guilty-pleasure material. Dating in the Dark takes three men and three women and only allows them to meet in total darkness. If they like what they hear (and feel) they can opt to see each other. Once the lights are on they have to decide if they want to go out again. I realize this sounds like it belongs on VH1, but I love the idea of watching people who are so desperate for a shot at love (or fame) they will stumble around in the dark to find it.


CBS – All reruns, but if you missed out this year it’s time to catch up on The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Two and a Half Men, and Rules of Engagement.


NBC – I’ve never understood why Criminal Intent is the least popular Law and Order franchise, considering it has the best acting talent. The episodes have already aired on USA, but NBC is going to rerun them for those who missed out. Jeff Goldblum has made a great addition to the cast, and you can hear him talk about his new gig.


FOX – More repeats, including the excellent fifth season of House and the new series Lie to Me. I didn’t bother with Lie to Me on the first opportunity, but now that it’s been picked up for another season I’m going to play catch up on what I’ve heard is a pretty good show.


ABC Family – I’ve made it a policy to completely ignore this channel due to my assumption that they show nothing but the same tween-targeted garbage you can find on Nick, Disney, and so many other channels. Then I was sitting at the movies earlier this year when a trailer for The Secret Life of the American Teenager played before the feature. I was intrigued enough to download the first episode from iTunes and I was very pleasantly surprised. Season two premieres at 8/7c on June 22nd.


Showtime – Here come the Botwins. Weeds is back for a fifth season at 10/9c on June 8th. Immediately following is the premiere of Nurse Jackie, a new series starring Edie Falco.


TNT – The summer tandem of The Closer and Raising the Bar return on June 8th at 9/8c. The best news I have here is that Bar’s Mark-Paul Gosselaar got a haircut for season two.

May 25, 2009 Posted by | Comedy, Drama, New Series, Premiere, Reality, Renewed, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Weeds Season 5 Premiere Date Set

I can’t seem to find an official press release, but The Futon Critic hasn’t failed me yet.  According to their site Nancy, Shane, Andy, Silas, and Doug will be back with us on Showtime at at 10/9 Central on June 8, 2009.

Update: It’s official…


March 14, 2009 Posted by | Comedy, Drama, Premiere, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments