TV Premieres

23 Sep

So, the fall TV season has begun…that long period before 24 and Scrubs start in January. While those may be the best drama and comedy, respectively, on television, there are plenty of good shows to keep me occupied until then. Not that I have much time to watch TV.

In fact, I missed the premieres of House, E.R., and Law & Order, but I just got them via bittorrent. I’ve yet to watch the House premiere, although I saw the second episode and loved it (even if I was able to guess the diagnosis, after seeing a special Dateline NBC about medical mysteries…teehee). I used to watch House off and on, but I hope to do so regularly this season. It’s a fine show…thoroughly gripping, and Hugh Laurie is the man.

The E.R. premiere picked up where the insanely intense season finale left off, and the premiere itself had some pretty intense moments as well. I used to watch E.R. regularly, then sort of lost track of it for a while, and then started following again. So it’s still weird for me that Abby and Luka are together (since I completely missed how they became interested in each other in the first place…and the pairing just seems strange to me), and I’m also annoyed that they changed the actor playing Sam’s son – the first kid was better anyway. The new kid doesn’t seem to ever say anything, either. But their storyline is really gripping, and the premiere ended with quite a powerful moment in it. It was particularly poignant because I really like Sam. And Abby, too. So I was happy that they were really the focus of this episode, and will probably continue to be for the season. I don’t think any other drama makes me feel so emotional while watching it. E.R. continues to be wonderful.

The Law & Order premiere was decent, although I didn’t care much for the Britney Spears / Kevin Federline-inspired plot. The addition of two new faces will also take an adjustment. The new detective, taking Fontana’s place, is a woman (I don’t remember the last female detective on L&O…), who happens to be played by the same actress who played a prosecutor on the cancelled L&O spinoff, Conviction. If we can ignore this discontinuity in the L&O universe, I think I’ll like the change. Fontana was good and all (certainly no Lenny Briscoe of course – R.I.P. Jerry Orbach), but I think the new girl’s a pretty good actress, and it adds a more interesting dynamic to the detective squad. The other newcomer is the new A.D.A., who is also a woman (but this shouldn’t come as a surprise). She’ll take a little more getting used to. I liked Borgia, and was distressed when she was killed in the season finale. It really sucks being an A.D.A., I guess. Unless you’re the immortal Jack McCoy – can’t help but love Sam Waterson. Anyway, the premiere was kind of lackluster, but of course I won’t miss an episode. I’m also glad they moved it to Friday. It’s a nice way to wind down at the end of the week…with homicide. 🙂

I did watch the Law & Order: SVU premiere, of course, which was quite good. Pretty intense. Marcia Gay Harden reprised her role as an FBI agent…and you know whenever “the Feds” are involved in an SVU episode, it’s something big. Elliot had some screentime but the focus was on Olivia…perhaps to balance out the ending, which I totally didn’t expect. What the heck? I hope this doesn’t mean a long-term change. I don’t really follow the news regarding these sorts of things, so I don’t know. I just hope it doesn’t ruin SVU for me, because it’s still my favourite of the L&O shows (I really don’t care for Criminal Intent at all).

I honestly don’t remember much about the Simpsons and Family Guy premieres, which is a problem I always have with comedy shows — I can never remember the jokes. But I do remember that they were funny, and I think the second episodes of each were even better. Even though both shows have gone past their Golden Ages, they still make me happy. The Simpsons will always have a special place in my heart, even if the episodes don’t cause as much audible laughter as they once did. I really live for the Ralph jokes, although Homer can still be classic. I think the show’s probably better than it was a few years ago, when I really started noticing the decline in quality. Family Guy was also somewhat of a disappointment when it was revived – it definitely had some brilliant moments, but wasn’t as consistently good as it was in seasons 1-3. They seem to rely way too much on sexual humour these days, and they use a lot of jokes that are funny in a sort of…’obtuse’ way, but not really ROFL-inducing. However, I do think that the episodes got more or less progressively better in seasons 4 and 5, and season 6 thus far is very funny. I mean…it’s Family Guy!

I’m looking forward to several premieres to come. NBC’s “Heroes” airs on Monday – I have no expectations as to the quality of the show, but the premise is what attracts me (not that it’s entirely original…Unbreakable, anyone?) But seeing as how Unbreakable is one of my favourite movies, and I’ve always been creating teams of superheroes since I was a kid, I’m looking forward to the possibilities this show can offer.

“Twenty Good Years” premieres next month…I have no idea how good it will be, and I’m no fan of the traditional sitcom format anymore, but I love John Lithgow and Jeffrey Tambor…I feel like it deserves a shot. I’ll also be watching the Lost premiere, even though I haven’t seen so many episodes of that show. Nonetheless, everytime I watch it I find it extremely compelling and intriguing, and I really got hooked at the end of the last season. I really should go back and watch all the episodes, but I don’t have the time. Damn. I just need to know what happens now. And I love the feel of the show…it always reminds me of Myst or something.

And lastly premieres “30 Rock,” with Tina Fey, Tracy Morgan, and Alec Baldwin. I love Tina, Tracy is absolutely hilarious, and Alec’s deadpan is brilliant. The show looks great, and I hope it will be a success.

A few shows I *haven’t* been following this season…Prison Break, for one. Another one of those shows where I got hooked during the last few episodes, but I’ve lost my interest now. It doesn’t help that I wasn’t familiar with any of the backstories, although admittedly the suspense was great. I would like to start from the beginning, but it remains to be seen when I’ll be able to do that. Same goes for The Office…I watched the tantalising season finale, although I missed the premiere. I should give it a shot sometime…it’s pretty funny, but the episodes I’ve seen have never made me do more than chuckle, and I can’t help comparing it to the British version. I mean, Steve Carrell is funny but he’s no Ricky Gervais, not by a longshot. I think the last time I laughed to the point of crying was at David Brent’s line, “I think there’s been a rape up there!”

I didn’t watch the SNL premiere…in fact it’s been a long time since I’ve watched SNL regularly. It simply sucks now, with a rare quality episode here and there. Of course I try to watch Conesy every Friday night, although sometimes I forget…I wish I could stay awake to watch him every night, though. I should try to watch the Colbert Report, too…but I tend to just watch clips on youtube, heh.

I’m sure there are other quality shows out there on television (granted, not *too* many), but I simply don’t have the time to follow any more.

You know what I haven’t watched in a while? Seinfeld. Now there’s a great show. I need to check to see when it airs out here. 🙂

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