Thursday, October 18, 2012

Thoughts on 5 New TV Shows

1. Elementary - There has only been 2 episodes so far, but I think this will be my favorite new series this season (which is actually quite sad because I'm not in love with it).  As I predicted, Jonny Lee Miller is a perfect Sherlock.  I love that Watson is not only a woman (Lucy Liu), but that she is his hired sober companion.  It gives a nice update to the story and gives an interesting dynamic to their relationship.  There's the sarcastic camaraderie that is typical for any Sherlock adaptation, but there is also a bit of sexual tension (although the creator promised they would never get together. Excuse me for being skeptical of that.).  I appreciate that it takes place in New York City, but that Miller keeps his accent (I get annoyed by shows taking place in NYC, where every character has the typical New York accent - that is not a realistic portrayal of the city at all).  The show is in line with the consistent CBS procedural programs, which are usually not the type of shows that I watch.  However, if it keeps with the pace of the first 2 episodes, it will keep my interest. 

2. 666 Park Avenue - The first 2 episodes were iffy, but wow the third episode was absolutely solid - complete with bleeding doors and a creepy dead girl.  It's difficult to set up a horror atmosphere and introduce a dozen characters that we are supposed to care about, therefore the first 2 episodes felt cluttered, but at least it seems to be heading in the right direction.  It was a genius move to have the actual address as 999 Park Avenue, but when the sunlight hits the numbers right, the shadow creates the 666 number (because who in their right mind would live at 666 Park Avenue??  Haha...).  The show has all the right elements in place - great characters, genuine creepy moments, intriguing back-story, humor (a character gets attacked by an elevator door.  That was supposed to be funny....right?).  But, honestly, my reason for enjoying the show (for now) comes down to the actors; all of whom I love (with the exception of Vanessa Williams.  I don't dislike her, but her whole "bitch" routine is tiresome).  Terry O'Quinn, who will always be referred to as "John Locke" but will remain "Kendall" to me (Alias trumps Lost ), is fantastically mysterious as the owner of the building.  The impossibly stunning, Rachael Taylor seems to be the star of the show, as Jane, the architect/historian that is compelled to uncover the secrets of the Drake building.  Of course, my favorite character is Henry, played by Dave Annable, who is the perfect combination of hot and awkward (I love the way he talks out of the side of his mouth).  Also, the Brothers & Sisters fan in me, can't help but smile at the fact that 666 Park Avenue is paired with Revenge (Justin and Rebecca!!!).  There are so many other actors/characters that are a bit sidelined right now, but I think all of them will play an important role in the series (if it doesn't get cancelled first).  I would love to see more from Erik Palladino (fantastic television actor). 

3. The New Normal - I watched the first 6 episodes, but I can't torture myself any more.  I laughed once, and oddly it was at a scene with the 2 characters that I hate the most on the show (Bryan and Shania).  The part I laughed at was when he was talking about how expensive his pants are and she says "They don't look like it".  It's not even funny.  That's how bad this show is.  I always hate when people criticize shows for stereotyping people, but in this case I agree.  My usual argument would be that stereotypes exist for a reason, blah blah blah, etc and so forth.  To use a stereotyped character on a television show, however, is tricky.  If this is a character that we are supposed to invest our time in getting to know, there has to be something more than just the stereotype.  The problem with The New Normal is that it is intending to give us something "new," as in revolutionary, but this show is a step backwards from the well-rounded gay couples that have existed in recent network television shows (think Kevin and Scottie on Brothers & Sisters.  It's weird to have made two Brothers & Sisters references in the same post, but hey, what a fantastic family drama that show was!).  I think as a society we have moved past the gay couple that consists of the "super gay" one and the "not gay" one. The other characters are just as simplistic, the Tea Party grandmother who spews hate whenever she can, the dumb blond who literally has no personality at all other than being a dumb blond, and a precocious child who is the voice of reason.  There is no depth to any of them and the best part is that they are all RICH!!  And they flaunt it.  Apparently "the new normal" can afford to buy designer baby clothes and throw fake weddings for children.  I don't know any of these people. I've never met anyone like them.  I wouldn't call the show offensive, but it certainly isn't as progressive as it thinks it is. 

4. Revolution - I really enjoyed the pilot episode.  The premise is original, the characters are interesting and the pace moved really quickly. It even had some humor - "I used to work at this place called Google, 80 million dollars in the bank and I would trade it all for a roll of Charmin".   It's a shame that I haven't liked another episode yet, but I'm not going to give up.  Although, I'm nervous it will get cancelled.  Especially, if it keeps it up with those dull sword fights.  I'm over it!!  I'm also getting frustrated that they haven't "discovered" that the mother is, in fact, alive, yet.  We all know that if a show casts someone like Elizabeth Mitchell, then that character will be an integral part to the show.  Why pretend otherwise?  Audiences aren't stupid.  I'm not really a fan of any of the characters (or any of the actors for that matter- except, of course, Giancarlo Esposito), nothing that I can quite pinpoint but I think there is a severe lack of chemistry and I can't really say that I am rooting for any of them.  That is quite problematic for a show like this.  All of these issues can be fixed, if NBC allows them the time to do it. 

5. Animal Practice - Just cancelled today!!  Replaced by the horrific show, Whitney (Why, oh why did NBC choose Whitney over Community?).  I can't really stick up for Animal Practice, other than saying it was a cute and satisfying comedy.  Hardly anything spectacular but I was entertained while watching it.  I think the cast is better than the script, so I guess it's a good thing that these actors can all move on to something more substantial.  I guess there is no point in saying anything else. 

No comments:

Post a Comment