Sunday, August 31, 2008

Fall 2008 Television

I thought I'd start out the new 2008 season of television by covering the new shows that will be premiering in just a week or two. It's been a long time since the last season, it seems longer than it actually was because of the 'ol strike. When the 2007 season started I was so excited because there were so many good shows that were starting...and then, the strike began! And all the shows went to a silent, silent slumber. Some woke back up, but some, some were taken off their life support and buried in the television graveyard; some even in unmarked graves.

I decided on a scale for this listing based on this hilarious commercial I saw last weekend for Pop Tarts. In the commercial two Pop Tarts are standing there and one eats a crown and the other eats a cowboy hat and the images both appear on their bellies. Then off to the right you hear a "No, No!" and a gulp. Then another Pop Tart appears on screen and he has a screaming Pop Tart on his belly and the other two shriek in terror and back off the screen while the new Pop Tart says, "What's the matter?" It is hilarious! So based on that I am using one to five cannibalistic Pop Tarts. I can't find it online, so I am just using the words instead of a picture.

So, we shall begin:

1. Fringe (ABC, Drama)- J. J. Abrams' new drama unfolds with a plane crash (yes, I know, but don't judge too quickly). It's not a rip-off of LOST, see in this plane ride, peoples faces melt off in their hands. That doesn't happen on LOST...ever! Right, so it's about an FBI agent who begins experiencing weird phenomena and somehow gets with an unstable genius and his son (Pacey). It looks quite interesting and since it is J.J Abrams, I am sure it will be great. I don't completely agree with the casting of Pacey, as I don't find him male lead in a show, at all. But, we'll give him a shot, who knows? The only problem really, is that it will be on FOX and we all know how FOX handles most good shows, right? Yeah, they cancel them!
I give it 4.5 Cannibalistic Pop-Tarts/5

2. Knight Rider (NBC, Drama)- Ummm...I get that Battlestar was a VERY good and successful reimagining of the original, but as we've learned from Bionic Woman, lightning doesn't always strike the same place twice.

However, NBC decided that because they had success with one reimagined series, they'd give it another go...with Knight Rider. Yes, Knight Rider. Last year it was presented on NBC as a backdoor pilot of which I had no desire to watch. Of course, it's been "updated" in many ways! This series follows Michael Traceur, Michael Knight's son (why he has a different last name, I don't know) in a brand new K.I.T.T. (Knight Industries 3000), a fancy new Ford Mustang (Hey! Product Placement!). Now instead of the original K.I.T.T.'s voice (William Daniels) we get Val Kilmer (Will Arnett did the voice in the pilot but because of contract issues with GM he could not continue in the series...again, the product placement, oh and because Val Kilmer had nothing to do). Plus, Michael now has a "team" and a "K.I.T.T. Cave" (I shit you not, that's what they are calling it!). I could be wrong, but this sounds bad...2 Cannibalistic Pop-Tarts/5.

3. The Eleventh Hour (CBS, Drama)- Rufus Sewell plays Jacod Hood a quirky, biophysicist who also happens to be a civilian employee at the FBI who is teamed up with, of course, a beautiful female, blonde FBI agent. I've read there isn't much of a background mythology, so I'm not sure of the point. You see, I like to have stand alone episodes, but I also like there to be something to keep me coming back even during those stand-alone times; I'm not sure this series has that.
3/5 Cannibalistic Pop-Tarts.

4. Life On Mars (ABC, Drama)- Oh Boy! Yeah, so this is a remake of a British series whereing Sam Tyler, a detective in England, gets in an accident and ends the 1970's...or does he? John Simm was fantastic in this show as Sam Tyler, a man from the present, lost in the past. Periodically we hear voices and noises that sound like reality; hospital beeps and boops, people pleading with Sam to come back, etc.

ABC picked up the "remake" and made a series starring Jason O'Mara. I like O'Mara, what I don't like is a great show being remade badly, or remade when it isn't neccessary. British remakes don't last real long when brought to the U.S.A. (see Touching Evil; moody, and great. Cancelled too soon. This show was an exception, but was cancelled none the less.) Why not just show the original? Because we like to steal U.K. shows and make them, mostly, bland...or good (Touching Evil) and decide that they are too dark and need to be ended.

3/5 Cannibalistic Pop-Tarts.

5. The Ex-List (CBS, Dramedy)- This show is to replace the fantastic Moonlight (which I may have been a tad harsh on last year). It is about a woman who goes to a psychic and is told that she has already found her soulmate in a previous relationship. She has just one year to find him, or lose him forever.

I think that giving her just one year seriously limits the amount of time the show can run, unless they make a year last four. Either that or they will drastically change the storyline of the show if it lasts more than a year by making the psychic a psychiatric patient who escaped and posed as a psychic yet our heroing is still skeptical. I'm guessing they didn't think ahead and are betting on a cancellation. Moonlight fit in with Ghost Whisperer and Numbers (Num-3-r-s's), which I've never watched , though I find David Krumholtz strangely attractive. But I digress... 2/5 Cannibalistic Pop-Tarts.

6. Dollhouse (FOX, Mid-season Drama)- Joss Whedon, Tahmoh Penikett, weird...probably good. However, FOX equals cancelled usually. Remember Firefly? This series stars Eliza Dushku as Echo, one of many "Actives" who have their memories erased and imprinted depending on what their mission is. Problem is, Echo starts to remember her past missions and that creates conflict as she isn's supposed to remember.

I read somewhere that the "house" is actually a dollhouse given to the daughter of the companies boss and they are all really dolls the girl plays with...or is it? I'm intrigued...4/5 Cannibalistic Pop-Tarts.

7. 90210 (CW, Drama?)- Needed? No. Wanted? No. Will I watch it? Like most of America who grew up with the original, I probably will if only to see how they've f'd if up. Then the ratings shall drop. Or they'll stay and the "stars" will start whoring it up and drugging it up around Hollywood until they inevitably self-destruct!

So there are some of the new shows premiering this fall...Let's see how they last!

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