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2009 Primies: Best Characters

By on Dec 25, 2009 in The Primies | 0 comments

Because it’s the end of the year (and of the decade), every TV critic is releasing best-of lists. And I am no exception, though small-potatoes I may be. Ergo I announce the First Annual Primie Awards! And the first category honors the 15 characters whom I appreciate most, in descending order of awesomeness. Frankly, the shows below would just be suckier without them! Sue Sylvester (Glee) When Sue swaggers onscreen in one of her splashy tracksuits, you know that she’s say something both wildly inappropriate and gut-bustingly funny. The malicious comments she deploys in her jihad against McKinley High’s glee club almost makes you root for her. Played by Jane Lynch. Ron Swanson (Parks and Recreation) The reluctant supervisor of Pawnee’s parks department had a breakout season that had him facing off with his domineering ex, presiding over the breakfast buffet at a...

41 Shows Reviewed in 140 Characters or Less

By on Dec 23, 2009 in Inanities | 1 comment

Note: The following post first appeared as an article by the same name in The Climax, Hampshire College’s newspaper. Also, some of these micro-reviews may exceed 140 characters—my bad! I am a student of television. Writing television scripts is my Division III [a senior project, in Hampshire speak]. So I have no shame in the fact that I watch all of the shows below religiously. I study the craft, folks. That’s a lie—I am ashamed of some of them, but I’m feeling forthright in my fourth-year-ness. Anyway, I only assumed that I couldn’t review all my shows for The Climax before I graduate. And then it occurred to me: I could review each in 140 characters or less. (Arbitrary number, I swear.) 24 Some seasons fire on all cylinders, and some make you want to shoot yourself in the kneecap. But I’m still a fan of the Bauer Power Hour. 30 Rock Is Tina Fey God? Even if not, this show is in...

The Prime Times: Vai Com Deus Edition

By on Nov 19, 2009 in In Brief | 0 comments

Here are the latest news items from the idiot-box world: Lost finally has a return date—the final season will premiere with a two-hour installment on Tuesday, February 2, at 9/8c on ABC. Chuck‘s return date was also announced today. The action-comedy will return with two episodes on Sunday, January 10, and then another one the following night as it settles into its normal timeslot of Mondays at 8/7c. The show was on the brink of cancellation this past spring until fans rallied to show their support. NBC gave the show another vote of confidence a few weeks ago when it upped its order from 13 episodes to 19. ABC has released some neat-o promo images for V showing the Visitors’ motherships hovering above the world’s metropolitan centers. One is shown above, and you can view the rest at io9. Just as I was wondering where Smallville actor Sam Jones, III has been all this...

2009 Emmys: My Winners

By on Sep 20, 2009 in Inner Monologues | 1 comment

The Emmys snuck up on me this year, but ever since I learned that the ceremony was tonight, my plans were set. (That said, an hour’s intermission for Mad Men might be in order.) I’m not predicting the winners here, mind you, but stating who I’m rooting for. I haven’t seen all of the nominated shows and performances, but from what I have seen, here are my picks for some of the top categories: Outstanding Drama Series Breaking Bad No other show in the category is under-subscribed as this one, and yet it’s one of the most nuanced, emotionally profound series on television. It would be a real coup if it won. Outstanding Comedy Series 30 Rock From Oprah hallucinations to Night Court reunions to Muppets in space to Salma Hayek saying “coco for cuckoo poops,” this show continues to outdo itself season after season. Outstanding Lead Actor – Drama...

High Expectations and Higher Education

By on Sep 2, 2009 in Previews | 1 comment

2009-2010 New Series Preview, Part 4 I was prepared to love Community, NBC’s latest venture into single-camera comedy. The premise is funny: a fake lawyer goes to community college to become legitimate and ends up becoming a fake Spanish tutor in a study group full of misfits. The actors (like Joel McHale and Chevy Chase) are all well-cast for their roles. The humor is, for the most part, fresh and unexpected. (For example, a slighted study-groupie tells the lawyer, “I thought you were like Bill Murray in any of his films, but you’re more like Michael Douglas in any of his films.”) And to top it all off, there’s no laugh track.  But for some reason, I only liked it. Incidentally, I can actually speak with authority about this show, because I have seen the first episode. (Being the minor-league TV critic that I am, I jump at any chance to preview new shows....