Watch This!

Two new Wednesday night shows have caught my attention, both of which are on ABC.

First, Revenge:

Talk about some soap opera-y goodness.  Emily Thorne is a cray-cray badass.  Also, you’ll find Kyle from Roswell and Serena’s little brother from Gossip Girl in better roles.  Plus, you’ll get to see rich snobs from the Hamptons get destroyed one episode at a time!

Suburgatory:

Wasn’t even on my radar until tonight.  Story follows girl and her father who move from NYC into the ‘burbs.  My younger self relates to the daughter so much – and Jeremy Sisto and Alan Tudyk  (Firefly) are fantastic.

Tuesday Television!

My Tuesdays are slim pickins as far a quality television is concerned.

We had episode 1.2 of RingerShe’s Ruining Everything.  The show’s pilot episode last week earned it strike one. And this week, unfortunately, earned it strike too.  While last week’s episode was just silly, this week’s episode managed to improve to dull, but terribly dull.  My heart isn’t even in this anymore and I’m fairly sure next week will result in the final episode I watch.  Better luck next time, SMG.  I might tune in to see Jason Dohring, maybe.

Glee returned and I had high hopes after a disappointing third season.  But honestly, nothing really won me over in the premiere.  I do like Quinn as a bad girl and that Blaine has joined New Directions.  Rachel and Kurt have some of the best scenes, but I just feel like it’s too little, too late.  We’ll see how I feel once Idina returns next week.

I am happy to announce that I adored the New Girl premiere.  I know a ton of people are annoyed by Zooey Deschanel, but her quirkiness I find endearing.  Honestly, I don’t really separate the actress from her character, Jess.  The role just has a sense of sincerity that is lacking on television, especially comedic television.  Her roommates (the premise has her character moving in with three guys) are fantastic in their own right – I see you there, Deputy Leo!  I haven’t forgotten our Veronica Mars love!  The Douchebag jar is genius and the reverse mormonism is beyond genius.  When the boys show up at the restaurant to save her from being stood up my heart might have melted just a little!  Kudos, new show!  I see love in our future.

Monday television!

I wholeheartedly promise to update with a book review post later today (for American Pastoral by Philip Roth), but until then enjoy my feelings on 2 Broke Girls and the Castle premiere.

2 Broke Girls wanted me to love it and I tried very hard.  Unfortunately, the off-putting laugh track, the forced jokes that my husband decided could only be hilarious to high-schoolers, and the predicable story lines ruined our potential love affair.  And come on – they get the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn so entirely wrong.  I think the show lacked subtlety and charm.  Two more episodes to win me over – good luck!

Castle, I hope, needs no introduction.  I would watch this show even if it were awful just because of Nathan Fillion, but thankfully this show is filled with win.  Season 4 picks up right where Season 3 left off – with Beckett shot, Montgomery still dead, and everyone else devastated.  Kate survives only to kick Castle to the curb for a few months as she needs ‘time’.  I hate when people need time.  The rest of the episode is fairly straightforward.  Castle very quickly forgives Beckett for  ignoring him for months.  He’s such a puppy dog, I swear.  The new Captain is Woman-Hear-Me-Roar type who likes to be called Sir.  I hope we can put Beckett’s shooter/mommy killer storyline to bed soon.  And I’m pissed that Kate is pretending she doesn’t remember Castle’s love confession.  Not the most awesome of episodes, but I know the awesome will return.

TV Reviews: Up All Night, The Secret Circle, and The Vampire Diaries!

Having too much fun watching the premieres of all the new shows!  I promise that I am still reading as well.  Read The Piano Teacher this week for book club on Sunday.  I’m also about halfway through two other novels – Shirley by Charlotte Bronte and American Pastoral by Philip Roth which I hope to finish this week – so look for those reviews next week!!

Let’s get started with Up All Night.  I am tough when it comes to comedies – if the characters aren’t completely endearing and I don’t laugh out loud, I will totally pass on the show forever.  Christina Applegate is a favorite of mine – loved Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead when I was 9 – and always enjoy Will Arnett.  I thought their chemistry as first time parents was fantastic and really grounded in realism.  I managed to laugh out loud within the first five minutes – when Applegate discovers she’s pregnant and that there’s a baby “in there” which sounds to Applegate like there’s a baby in a closet ready to come at them with a knife.  Arnett being the stay at home dad to Applegates’s television show producing bread winner is also a refreshing spin.  Unfortunately, Maya Rudolph ruins the whole damn thing.  I loved her in both Away We Go and Bridesmaids – but her performance here as an over-the-top Oprah-like television personality leaves realism behind in favor of slapstick comedy better left to Saturday Night Live.  We’ll see if she calms down in the first three episodes – if not, I’m outta here!

Our next new show is The Secret Circle from the CW which is about witches.  Seeing as to how I love all things supernatural, I was more than a little excited – especially knowing how good The Vampire Diaries has turned out to be.  Let’s just say I was not disappointed!  This show promises a great battle between good and evil, a superb bad guy in Gale Harold (whom I love an inappropriate amount), and plot twist after plot twist to keep viewers on the edge of their seats.  Of course, the pilot wasn’t perfect.  Most of everything revealed had already been seen in previews and the bad girl, Faye, was not as good as the rest of the cast which is extremely disappointing.  Witches and the like have been overdone recently, so we’ll see if the show can keep the idea fresh or not – but I’ll be there for every moment!

And finally, on to The Vampire Diaries.  I love this show so much.  What most shows only manage to pull off once or twice in a season during hiatus and finale cliffhangers, TVD manages to do in almost every episode.  The pacing is superb, beloved characters are killed, unpredicatble twists are the norm, and the cast is both beautiful and talented.  Characters you used to hate you grow to love and vice versa.  For me, this show is pretty close to mindless fluff perfection – with moments of clarity and intelligence that are pleasantly surprising.  Ok…enough with the fangirl imitation.  The new season throws us back into the action with Elena growing ever closer to Damon while mourning the momentary (hopefully!) loss of Stefan.  But you won’t find our heroine jumping off of cliffs any time soon (this is a thinly veiled Twilight insult)!  Stefan has turned all big bad (fun stuff!) and has re-earnd his nickname “The Ripper”.  Caroline and Tyler are getting all hot and snuggly just in time for Tyler’s mom to shoot Caroline down with vervain as she tries to leave the Lockwood mansion – and you thought your significant other’s parents were tough to deal with!!  Oh show, how I love you!!

TV Review: The Ringer series premiere

If you know anything about me, you know I love scripted television about as much as I love books.  You also know that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is one of my favorite series of all time.  I can feel the judgement already!

After a long hiatus away from the small screen, Sarah Michelle Gellar has returned to television in The Ringer, the CW’s noir soap opera in which she plays twins!  Bridget is a recovering coked-up stripper (from Wyoming…really?) currently under witness protection and Siobhan is a Hamptons/NYC socialite.  In the pilot, Bridget escapes her protective custody, finds her way to Siobhan (they’ve been estranged for 6 six years due to some mystery involving some child named Sean), and assumes Siobhan’s identity when Siobhan seemingly commits suicide by bad green screen effects…or drowning…whatever floats your boat.  Sounds tremendously trashy, yes?

Le sigh – it was TERRIBLE.  Everyone was so stiff-faced and dull (SMG has never mastered drama).  This show takes itself way too seriously and the script is devoid of any life.  I felt like I was at a funeral the whole time, not a fun campy drama filled with twists and turns.  And I love fun campy shows!  The Vampire Diaries and True Blood are fantastic in this respect.

Poor SMG.  The special effects are terrible, the cliche plots leave little to the imagination, and now I’ve discovered that Jason Dohring is also set to start in later episodes – NO, JASON!  Don’t do it!!!  Now I have to continue watching.

With all that being said, pilots are often terrible.  I’ll be giving SMG and Mr. Dohring three episodes before I officially give up and reclaim my 9pm Tuesday nights.