Category: TV

Heroes – episode 16


Suck that, Sylar! In this episode we’re treated to good things happening, some good cliffhangers, and one stupidly contrived episode ending.
Plus Stan Lee! Excelsior!


Heroes – episode 15


Matt Parkman is the most stupidly oversensitive police officer in the world! Meredith, or the writers, can’t decide whether she’s caring or venal! Missi Pyle manages to appear in something without having to resort to her crazy eyes! Sylar has some nerve! The Haitian really, really sucks at his job!

It’s an improvement, but it ain’t great and its name doesn’t make any sense.


Grey’s Anatomie de l’Enfer

I was going to give up Grey’s Anatomy after Washingtongate, and then I realised that Isaiah Washington’s deplorable actions were just a smokescreen to cover up the fact that the most popular show in the world … sucks. It undoubtedly has its moments, but the core cast is terrible, and the whole exercise is ridiculously cutesy poo.
It started back up on Channel 7 this week, and straight up we had Ellen Pompeo’s voice telling us in its smug way “I know the facts of life! Suck it, bitchés!”
The show proceeded to play its smug pop music, and then show its smug bursts of humour, and then offered its smug profundity.

Essentially the only good part of the show was Bailey talking to the man who had been exposed to the plague, and whose wife had died. That was good emotion right there. Also almost good was the work of Addison and Alex as the Pediatric Dream Team, which is amazing for two of the supposedly least sympathetic characters on the show.

But let’s see: everyone else is annoying as all get out! McDreamy is wet and pathetic! George? Also wet and pathetic! Until I realised that T.R. Knight is a pretty cool guy, I hated him for George. Then I realised that he’s presented that way, and it’s not his fault – it’s Shonda Rhimes, crusher of souls.
Then you’ve got Izzie, who runs the gamut from overly enthusiastic to “I can’t get off the floor”; you’ve got Christina, who expertly projects the aura of “Sandra Oh is great”; and now we’ve added Callie to the mix. I hated her last season. I’ve changed as a person since then, so I don’t hate her so much as I simply hate the show that she’s in.

Meredith Grey is a terrible, terrible woman. Her pithy narration (the worst this side of Desperate Housewives, which I gave up on entirely too late) totally does not match her proper demeanour – that of the emo surgeon with dead eyes who can’t make a decision for herself. I think it’s good that we’ve got George off of her, because I don’t want this show to swim in its own patheticness while pretending to be hip, trendy, profound and cool.

Then at the end we got Isaiah Washington appearing sensitive. Well, I didn’t buy it for a second. When your show has no credibility and your viewers hate all of your characters, you’re screwed. I’m weaning myself off masochistic television, so hopefully I can cut Meredith Grey’s fetid claws out of the small of my back … all while listening to trendy pop music.

I’ve decided.

Passions must die.

My heart broke a little inside when I realised it wasn’t even bad enough to be good. I asked Curtis how it could possibly have been worse than the first instalment. His suggestion: because they wrote more and kept filming it.
To add insult to this grievous injury, it’s not even a good recording of I Don’t Feel Like Dancing. Listen here, NBC: I no longer feel like living!

I can’t say anything more about it than that … so I’ll follow this up with some happiness!

I Can’t Decide …

… if this is the worst thing ever, simply terrible, or shock and awesome.

I love Scissor Sisters and, several years back, I watched Passions for about six weeks before I realised that nothing ever happened. The show was going nowhere, and it was going there slowly.

When last I watched Passions, Timmy was still alive, some guy had fallen through the skylight at a New Year’s Eve party and it had been New Year’s Eve for three weeks.

Timmy being dead, it appears that they had to replace her with Endora. Considering that Juliet Mills plays Tabitha, I have to wonder where Samantha is. Seeing as Endora is a mute five year old girl who communicates in thought bubbles accompanied by pop-up sounds … I don’t actually know where that thought is going but I can emphatically tell you that it ain’t going anywhere good.

Further analysis of the clip itself: Scissor Sisters are singing “Land of 1000 Words”, which you may recall from their clip shot in Scissorvision. When they perform the song, Ana doesn’t seem anywhere near as into it as she does when she’s actually on a real stage. When Tabitha cuts the song short, Jake freaks out. The best part about this freak out is that it essentially this:

Where the hell are we? Moments ago we were performing in Wembley! That’s right: Britain loves us, you ingrates!

Then comes the anger, where they look hilariously like they’re going to beat up an elderly witch and a child witch.
If Del Marquis has ever looked more threatening than that, I’ll go hide under my bed.

I don’t think that it’s a coincidence that “The Wizard”, who is a part of the stage band but is not an actual Sister, didn’t get any dialogue. I understand that these fine folks will be back to play “I Don’t Feel Like Dancing” at whatever the hell club that these dull-eyed Jesse Metcalfe-lites go to so that they can plot to steal each other’s boyfriends and sell their souls and expose or cover up rich family conspiracies, so if I find that I’ll be sure to give you second by second coverage.

Thanks to the people on YouTube who filter through all of the crap so that I can take the fleeting nuggets. I couldn’t actually find this on YouTube myself, so thanks to Towleroad for working that magic.

Update: Hah! Jake Shears strikes back at some of the detractors!

For cryin’ out loud.
We bugged ’em for two years. They wrote us into a script.
We went on the show, had some good, doofy fun. It’s not like it was some evil publicity stunt the record label hatched. I even get a Kathie Lee Gifford Carnival Cruise moment in tomorrows episode. It’s not like we were looking for a daytime Emmy either. I couldn’t act my way out of a paper bag.
I think the cynics are just jealous. Who doesn’t want to be on Passions?

Having spent a large part of my night reading about Timmy’s adventures in a fantasy wonderland before finally giving up his heart to Charity (and then his actor tragically dying in real life) … sign me up! I can get there before the September 7 finale!

Heroes – episode 14


I really enjoyed the first half of Heroes. Since then we’ve suffered at the hands of an invisible Haggard-esque degaying of Zach (I don’t know: he still seems pretty gay to me), a general anti-climactic nature, boredom at the hands of Niki/Jessica, and the distinct impression that the writers are just throwing revelations at us for the sake of it.

Don’t get me wrong, I still like Heroes; I just think that it’s incredibly silly. I’m good at taking silly things seriously, but come on: Hiro’s father is Mr. Sulu!



Australia Week: Intermission!

A lot of the ads on Australian TV are either dubbed over American ads (which are a true pain to watch), cosmetics ads brought to you by the face of that brand (if we’re lucky, Natalie Imbruglia), or the singularly unimaginative Brand Power ads.

Very rarely do we get a true narrative ad anymore that is worthy of comment, short of that of a father telling his child that the Great Wall of China was built by “Emperor Nasi Goreng to keep the rabbits out. There were too many rabbits.”
The child then takes this information and disseminates it to his class in the form of an oral report. This is supposed to inform us of the great study aid that is broadband internets.

The most entertaining and polished ads on television are, surprisingly, for beer. The ads for Bundaberg are strangely ocker tales of a polar bear and his human mates, but they are nothing compared to the mighty power of the new Carlton Draught ad, “Flashbeer”:

I believe that beer ads are largely preaching to the converted, as beer drinkers generally know their own tastes, but this one is funny.

The strength of beer ads has been in question since last year’s “Big Ad”, which was beloved the world over, but did not really achieve its goal of “selling some bloody beer”:

Still, as a teetotaller, I enjoy these “expensive ads” because they are among the most creative on television, and the most Australian. As I approach the final sentence, I realise that I don’t really watch enough television to be able to present a full expose of the Australian commercial industry. Also, both of those ads are for Carlton Draught. Still, I’ve no doubt that the two ads I’ve presented represent the best of the best.

Teach me the secrets of secular pleasure! TV to soothe the savage breast

I’ve been watching a lot of television, to supplement my present Pokémon Emerald addiction and to avoid work – even internet work, and I’m supposed to be doing that for fun.

To say that TV hasn’t been good for ages is a lie – you just have to know what to look at. The three series that I packed episodes of into this weekend cover different subject matter, but they all share one common element: they make me laugh. It is funny, then, that all three of them are sitcoms devoid of laugh tracks.

There should be another caveat: one of them has been cancelled because, as some wags have alleged, it is too “clever” for television.

The programs in question are:

  • Arrested Development
  • My Name is Earl
  • Scrubs

Their various comedies – absurd, built up jokes; jokes at the expense of classless criminals; Zach Braff being annoying but also being funny and allowing his cast members to be funny around him – alienates them from audiences. If you can please everybody, though, you run the risk of pleasing no one. Hence Yes Dear, My Wife and Kids, How I Met Your Mother and Everybody Loves Raymond.*