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Archive for the ‘Fall TV 2009’ Category

The War is Only Beginning: My Advance Review of the Return of V

In November, Tyler was meeting Anna, getting sucked in by her force, Jack got stabbed by an alien, Erica was teaming with Ryan and Georgie to form the resistance, and they started by blowing up a mystery substance in the flu vaccine. Now in March, all those things are picking up again, on ABC’s reimagaining of V.

V if you did not know centers around Erica Evans (the excellent Elizabeth Mitchell), a FBI agent, who is thrown into a major situation as alien ships hover over major cities. Those aliens are known as V’s and they as they say come in peace but are really reptilian creatures that have a secret agenda led by Anna (Morena Baccarin). Anna also has a whole armada of ships coming toward earth but her immediate problem lies in the 5th Column, a rogue group of V’s that have been planet for years.

If you need a more length refresher at the first four episodes check out the recap below but the same girl who does the awesome LOST recaps.

Vodpod videos no longer available.
more about “V“, posted with vodpod

I got a chance to see the return episode, the show’s 5th, and it comes back with vengeance. First thing, there is a kick ass fight scene between a visitor and Erica, in Liz’s signature Juliet fight style. Each of the shows regulars are given a start to their upcoming storylines in the hour, written by new showrunner Scott Rosenbaum. As Erica and Georgie, continue to get a resistance with Ryan, they try to incorporate a new member played by Charles Mesure, a mercenary that has much need experience. Ryan is also busy with Val, as she is having a hybrid baby and has no idea. She is having some unknown side-effects and fans of the original series will be very happy at what happens at the end of the episode.

Back at the mothership, Anna and her daughter, and Tyler’s boyfriend Lisa, continue to get Tyler to join their team and that includes an introduction to a very cool par of the ship known as the “memory chamber.” Anna also is dealing with the 5th column and she realizes this is going to be one long fight.

In the end, the episode is a great sci-fi accomplishment, it shows that even with new direction, on a new incarnation of an old show, the genre can still be relevant, emotional, and compelling in a very new sense. I am very excited to see where this journey will take as in the next 8 episodes of the first year and hopefully not last.

V is well worth the wait and debuts in its new time-slot after Lost on ABC at 10/9c Tuesday.

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Family Drama is….My Review of NBC’s Parenthood

The Braverman Family

If you have had at all been watching the Olympics this year, you have been told a thousand times, “Parenthood is….,” and could not be happier to have that put in your face. Parenthood is a new drama by Brian Grazer and Ron Howard based on the 80’s movies of the same name. The show centers around the Braverman family, a typical California family, with four grown up children at different stages of adulthood, a patriarch that is overbearing, and a matriarch that stands and watches. The series begins Tuesday at 10/9c after The Biggest Loser on NBC and it is a series that celebrates the ideas, the hopes, and troubles of beginning a family in the best possible way.

Parenthood has a tremendous cast, centered around Craig T. Nelson (The Incredibles) as Zeke, who loves to be included in anything that his children and grandchildren are involved in. He is married to Camille, played by Die Hard‘s underrated Bonnie Bedelia, who takes a back seat to Zeke’s powerful attitude. We are brought into the series through the eye’s of Sarah, played by the wonderful Lauren Graham (Gilmore Girls) who replaced Maura Tierney, who departed the series after she learned of her breast cancer. Sarah after getting divorced, takes her two kids (Miles Heizer and Mae Whitman) back home to move in to her parents house much to the dismay of her teenagers.

Erika Christensen, Lauren Graham, and Bonnie Bedelia discuss girl talk at the dinner table

The other three children are leading successful and unsuccessful lives, Crosby (Dax Shepard) is the youngest and is still trying to find himself, not wanting to settle down with his girlfriend. Julia, played by Erika Christenson,who gave an amazing guest stop in Lie to Me last year, is a successful lawyer with a little girl that she does not see enough as her husband (Sam Jaeger, Eli Stone) stays at home. Finally, Adam and Krisina (Peter Krause and Monica Potter) are your typical suburban parents, three kids, all in various points of childhood, and as in the pilot they encounter a problem that is more and more prevalent that will pull at your heartstrings.

Parenthood sure lives up to its name with all the possibly meanings represented in the family. The pilot is full of drama, humor, and depth that pulls you in immediately to the family and after the first ten minutes I found myself caring about what happens. I true gem I found in the series are the kids. Child actors can sometimes be the burden but even with the youngest of kids, I found true to the character. I believe you will be especially taken with Max, Adam’s child, played by Max Burkholder, who has to deal with a lot in the pilot.

The second hour airing next Tuesday is just as fun on the pilot and includes a little more humor which I think the show does best. It also shows a great use of all the family, each having seperate but easily entangled stories. Also look for great comedic actress, Erinn Hayes, to show up as a mom from Julia’s daughters school. So glad she is getting work.

Parenthood is one of the best new series this year, and with all the behind-the-scenes troubles that came up, you never get that on-screen. What you get is a well-made, well acted family drama, that tells a real tale in an excellent way. It enters the new NBC lineup tonight at 10/9c.

First Look: ‘V’ ends 2009 with a Bang!

V has only aired three episodes but tonight it airs its final installment of 2009. ABC has promised it will end the year with a bang but is that true….

What ABC Says:

“It’s Only the Beginning” — Erica works with newly-formed allies to uncover a biological threat they suspect the Visitors have been plotting.  Aboard the Mothership, Anna meets with a special guest while managing the investigation into the murder of a V. And Chad does a segment on the V Healing Centers, demonstrating their amazing medical abilities, but then finds himself conflicted by some of his findings, on the riveting cliffhanger of “V,” TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 24 (8:00-9:01 p.m., ET), on ABC.

I have really enjoyed the last three episodes. After the stellar pilot, the episode contine with its mini-series like reveals especially with the last episode which (SPOILER ALERT) ended with Anna being revealed to be Lisa’s mother. The episode in a whole is the best hour yet but it over delievers and under delievers in some areas. I was not over impressed in the way the series wraps but I really like the direction is going. Where the show excels is in the relationships between Erica and Jack, and as we saw in hour 3 now Ryan is put into the mix along with Georgie.

The other “half” persay of the show is the relationship of Chad and the V’s which take a interesting turn with a surpiring personal reveal about Chad who is now spending a lot of time with second in command Marcus.

Also in the hour, some real stories from Ryan’s fiance Valerie, as well as more hints about the mysterious 5th Column. V is show I am fully behind and hope you are too. If you aren’t one of the 16.7 million viewers who caught the premiere, you can caught the last three hours, they are available on Hulu and ABC. There is plenty of time to catch up.

V airs on ABC at 8/7c tonight! It returns in March 2009 with 9 more episodes to complete season 1.

Fall TV 2009: ABC’s V

I posted this review last month but felt it was necessary to show you again because I really would love for you to tune into this how. V rocks my world, and it should rock yours to. (Also, I saw a finished pilot so this review is tweaked some.)117297_WATER_01r1_preABC Says:

“V” is a re-imagining of the 1980’s miniseries about the world’s first encounter with an alien race. Simultaneously appearing over every major city in the world, the Visitors (or V’s) promote a message of peace. Through their generous offer to share advanced technology, the V’s build a following that may actually hide a more malevolent agenda, one that twists a very deep component of human nature: devotion.

While the world quickly becomes fascinated with the V’s and their link to wonders just beyond the reach of human understanding, FBI Counter Terrorist Agent Erica Evans (Elizabeth Mitchell) discovers a secret hidden beneath the skin of every V – a secret that may threaten the lives of everyone close to her. Yet for her teenage son, Tyler (Logan Huffman), the V’s are his ticket to something big and hopeful — a new chance for mankind to unite in common goals. To Chad Decker (Scott Wolf), a career-hungry news anchor, his exclusive interview with Anna (Morena Baccarin), the leader of the V’s, is crucial to his dominating the airwaves. Also unsure about the Visitors is Father Jack (Joel Gretsch), a priest questioning his faith in the wake of the Visitors’ arrival. Seeking answers outside the church, Father Jack discovers there are other dissidents who believe the Visitors are not who they say they are, including Ryan Nichols (Morris Chestnut), who is faced with his own life-altering decision when the V’s show up. Never has there been more at stake — it truly is the dawning of a new day.

116242_1985_preThe Good: This to me is the best new show of the fall. It is a spectacular story of visitors and how we deal with them. The acting, the writing, the look are all perfect. You could not get any better than this cast. Come on, Morena Baccarin as Anna is fantastic, and mark my words she will breakout. Her demeanor and presence as the Visitors leader is remarkable. Elizabeth Mitchell (my favorite actress in the world) is again strong especially when she has something to work for like her son. Erica is a powerful women and that is how we like them. The rest of the cast including Joel Gretsch who returns to the sci-fi genre, Morris Chestnut, and little Scott Wolf are all top notch. But what really sets the show apart is the visual aspect and “epic” like feel to the events. It is like a movie to watch the pilot, the special effects are breathtaking with vast shots of giant ships over the world. V rocks my world in every possible way, and it will rock your world too! (More on V in the coming months!)

The pilot you will see tonight had some new scenes added that really spice up the hour. You get more sci-fi and Visitor’s technology that they use. Also, in the original pilot, Chad (Scott Wolf) was sold to be a little bit of snob and one that will do anything, now the character is much kinder and works well with the intensity of the show.

The Not So Good: Are you kidding me? Nothing to think of.

V premieres tomorrow at 8/7c on ABC! “They come in Peace, Always!”

Fall TV 2009: My Review of USA’s White Collar

Fall cable premieres are pretty much coming to a close with a brand new characters do the “character” driven USA lineup, but are they interesting…NUP_135879_1525

What USA Says:

WHITE COLLAR is about the most unlikely of partnerships between a con artist and an FBI agent. The story unfolds after charming criminal mastermind Neal Caffrey (Bomer) is caught by his nemesis, G-Man extraordinaire Peter Burke (DeKay). After escaping from a maximum-security prison to find his long-lost love, Neal is nabbed by Peter once again. Rather than returning to jail for this daring getaway, Neal suggests an alternate plan – providing his expertise to assist the Feds in putting away infamous and elusive criminals in return for his freedom. Thiessen plays Peter’s wife, Elizabeth, an intelligent, high-status event planner with a certain intuition of her own. Garson plays Mozzie, a friend of Caffrey’s with a strong distrust of the Feds and an unyielding belief in conspiracy theories. Diahann Carroll (“Grey’s Anatomy,” “Dynasty”) guest stars in the pilot and will star as a dynamic recurring character.

WHITE COLLAR, starring Matt Bomer (“Chuck,” “Tru Calling”), Tim DeKay (“Tell Me You Love Me,” “Carnivle”), Tiffani Thiessen (“What About Brian,” “Fastlane”) and Willie Garson (“Sex and the City,” “John from Cincinnati”). On Friday, October 23 at 10/9c, WHITE COLLAR will debut with a special 90-minute episode followed by 13 one-hour episodes. The announcement was made by Jeff Wachtel, president, original programming, USA Network and co-head, original content, Universal Cable Productions.

NUP_135932_0743The Good: White Collar works for a couple reasons. First of all its leading men in Matt Bomer as the criminal Neal Caffrey and Tim DeKay as Agent Burke. The play of each other so well in the first two episodes that I saw that you just want they to be on your screen for more and more time. Second is the way the production takes advantage of its background in New York City. The show feels big, feels important thanks to its sweeping views especially when a party in the second episode takes place in a great local. Thirdly, for the hilarious Willie Garson who gives a nice comic edge to the show in his ditzy but helpful Mozzie.

White Collar also has some impressive recurring players first in Diahann Carroll as the nice lady Neal befriends so he can live in a nice place and veteran actor James Rebhorn who plays a great old time FBI boss to the leads.

The Not So Good: The only thing that threw me for a loop is why the wonderful Marsha Thomason (Lost) who plays Tim Dekay right hand agent and has a scandlous personal life in the pilot is not mentioned in anything for the show or in the second epsiode where she is semmingly replaced by the still wonderful Natalie Morales. Not a big misstep but one worth mentioned. White Collar is the perfect show to join the likes of Monk, Psych, Royal Pains, and Burn Notice in USA’s run of great dramas. This is one you should be watching.

White Collar airs after the return of Sharona on the final season of Monk at 10/9c tonight on USA Network!

Fall TV 2009: NBC’s 30 Rock

30 Rock puts the winning in Emmy winning having one the best comedy award every year since its existence, will it be worth the award this year….

NUP_111035_0091What NBC says about the first two episodes:

JACK (ALEC BALDWIN) MAKES ADJUSTMENTS TO SAVE MONEY AND STAY RELEVANT DURING THE RECESSION. STEVE BUSCEMI GUEST STARS — Jack (Baldwin) informs Liz (Tina Fey), Tracy (Tracy Morgan) and Jenna (Jane Krakowski) that “TGS” needs to make immediate adjustments to become more relatable. In an effort to do their part, Jenna (Krakowski) decides to makeover her image, while Tracy (Morgan) attempts to regain touch with the common man. In the meantime, Jack sends Liz (Fey) and Pete (Scott Adsit) on a mission to scout new “TGS” talent while Kenneth (Jack McBrayer) leads a Page strike. Judah Friedlander and Keith Powell also star.

JACK (ALEC BALDWIN) MAKES ADJUSTMENTS TO SAVE MONEY AND STAY RELEVANT DURING THE RECESSION. STEVE BUSCEMI GUEST STARS — Jack (Baldwin) informs Liz (Tina Fey), Tracy (Tracy Morgan) and Jenna (Jane Krakowski) that “TGS” needs to make immediate adjustments to become more relatable. In an effort to do their part, Jenna (Krakowski) decides to makeover her image, while Tracy (Morgan) attempts to regain touch with the common man. In the meantime, Jack sends Liz (Fey) and Pete (Scott Adsit) on a mission to scout new “TGS” talent while Kenneth (Jack McBrayer) leads a Page strike. Judah Friedlander and Keith Powell also star.

NUP_134171_004730 Rock is a funny show. Nobody can argue that and with teh first two episodes of season 4 that I saw it does not make me change my mind. I needed my Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) back and she is back in her quirky way with the premiere focusing on how Jack (Alec Baldwin) wants to hire a new cast member for the show which causes Liz to panic, and then the second episode marks the return of the very great Will Arnett as Jack’s nemisis.

The highlight for the first two episodes though is the supporting cast especially Jenna (Jane Krakoski) and Tracy (Tracy Morgan) who both play great together when news a new cast member is heard. Jenna even goes to Iceland to prove a point. Why? You will have to wait to see because it provides many laughs.

I hope this year that Tina and the crew rely less on the big guest stars they get and more on the wonderful supporting cast. If they can do that, the show will be even stronger. Plus, just give us Alec Baldwin all the time because he is plain awesome.

30 Rock airs after The Office on NBC at 9:30/8:30c.

Big News Day and What Did You Think?

117687_208_preWow. When I came home today, I flicked on the news reel and nothing major in TV had happened, 20 minutes later. Things had erupted. First of all, the fantastic news that ABC has picked up Modern Family, Cougar Town, and The Middle for full seasons with an addition of 9 +13 all ready ordered episodes. All three laughers have made me well laugh especially Modern Family, and are performing strong for the net.

Then things went downhill from there. 10 minutes later THR.com reported that NBC has cancelled there powerful, gritty, and real crime drama Southland 2 weeks before it was due to premiere. An odd change in events for the dying network that was said not to be happy with what was happy and that is was not going to perform.

Southland was great last spring and I am sad to see it go. Back to the good news, all signs are pointing to ABC’s addictive new drama FlashForward will be picked up for a full 24 episodes need to tell its season 1 tale. ABC wants to see how it did tonight. Also, if you were wondering when a certain Lost individual was going to show up for his permanent stay, I would recommend staying for next week.

For tonight’s TV, what did you think? Is FlashForward grabbing you? Did you find Jim and Pam’s wedding on The Office as touching and iconic as I did? What other shows are you watching on this crowded Thursday?