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Archive for the ‘Private Practice’ Category

New Seasons, New DVD’s: The ABC Docs are In

ABC has always been successful in creating dramas but nothing hit and last as well in the past 10 years for them than Grey’s Anatomy, and now entering its seventh season next Thursday, it is time to catch-up if you have missed the last year. The Complete Sixth Season DVD set is out on Tuesday, along with its Thursday partner.

I entered Grey’s sixth season a little late after marathoning last summer the entire season, needless to say, that the previous year hit a creative low, the sixth slowly grew into their best year in years. Katherine Heigl departed, characters played by Kim Raver, and a group of new doctors for the merger which combined Seattle Grace and Mercy West in the first episodes back, gave us some great faces, but most of all it was the stories that went from soapy pieces to hard-hitting medical stories.

But we can not deny the highlight of the season: the finale. It was two-hours of edge-of-your-seat television, easily some of the best hours of the last year, and something that I remember fondly. I was in tears, I had my mouth open, and I was in awe of what creator Shonda Rhimes created for those characters. Do yourself a favor and get the DVD set which includes 20 more minutes of the finale as well as features and more.

Private Practice in my mind has always been the smart ones Grey’s. After its rocky first year during the strike, the show turned into a dark and compelling medical drama with just a tint of romance and soap. The third season out Tuesday, really showed that off.

Although it started as a vehicle for Kate Walsh’s Addison, the show is now a true ensemble with Amy Brenneman and Tim  Daly really hitting out of the park this year.

The DVD set includes a look ahead as well as Kate Walsh’s best 8 of the year. Buy them this Tuesday everywhere.

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Recapping the Season: Top 5 Returning Shows

I continue my look at the past television season and doing some top 5’s for what worked in a ratings-challenged year. Up second are the returning entries that graced the screen this year and which ones worked well:

1. Parks and Recreation is easily the biggest jump from below mediocrity to so far above the bar this year. The first season of six episodes was nothing special and Amy Poehler was not her finest as Leslie Knope but back in September something changed, and we should all be so grateful for whatever it was. Leslie became a much more grounded character and with less Michael Scott qualities and more funny. The supporting cast was featured more from Nick Offerman as Ron to Rashida Jones better used Ann. Rob Lowe and Adam Scott additions can only make it better come midseason. (Why do we have to wait?!)

2. Lost, I love you. Thank you for the best finale and an overwhelmingly awesome final season. That is all I can say.

3. Survivor this year can be summer up in one word: Russell. Russell Hantz was just brilliant in both Samoa and one of the best seasons ever done, Heroes vs. Villains. Especially this spring edition, really showed what a surprising, compelling reality show it still is and once was and I can only hope this high ride will continue in the fall.

4. Private Practice is a pretty great show and not a lot of people know it. The show was not the best spinoff in its first season but after the writer’s strike the writing got better, smarter and the cast gelled and it has been smooth sailing ever since. What really makes Practice different from Grey’s in recent months is that the cases of the week are very intelligent and are still very much part of the story as much as the soap. Check this out in the fall, you will be very happy you did.

5. The New Adventures of Old Christine was cancelled and I was much more upset by it than I thought I would. While the Julia Louis Dreyfus fronted comedy was never must-see it was a consistent funny half-hour that I wish ABC would have support. This season really developed Christine as more of a dumb single woman and that’s it.

Came close: Grey’s Anatomy rebounded from a rough fifth season in a very solid way. This was the first year I have ever watched a season when it has aired and I am very fond memories from it. Most notably, the shocking, awe-inspiring, intense finale they have ever done. What a fantastic two hours, but not only was that well-done, the season’s fifth episode “Invasion” was remarkable. All told in flashbacks to a day where someone died that shouldn’t have that featured great work by the new Mercy West crew and Sarah Drew. Well done, Shonda and team again.

What is your Top 5?

Catching Up on TV Part 2

Wednesday and Thursdays are packed full of fun television including some buzzworthy dramas and comedies, here are my thoughts as some wind down, and some are gearing up, plus my take on a Sunday fave.

The Middle/Modern Family/Cougar Town – I’m laughing. All the time, and that is all that matters with these three renewed for year two, superb comedies. With The Middle, their key to success has been in the Heck kids who especially in the biggest episodes to date. Brick (Atticus Shaffer) in particular with his delivery just makes it so so funny, and then Axl and Sue who are so unique in his approach on girls and her trying to fit in.

Modern Family just rocks and after “My Funky Valentine” officially became my favorite comedy on TV. In a combination of hilarity, sweetness, and uniqueness it just works. The one thing that in every episode which each story is synchronised to the others in that episode from latin housekeepers and dog butlers that are somehow intertwined by mannerisms and dialogue. That is a testament to the cast and that writing that is so so Emmy worthy. (Sorry Glee.)

Cougar Town is one brilliant town and it is not for Jules (Courtney Cox) only but for the supporting players that make each half-hour from Ellie’s views on life to Bobby, Andy, and Grayson’s night out, and Travis maturity with his mother (Did you know he is really 25?). The show has twindld in the ratings but I hope an upcoming recurring role from Sheryl Crow can change that, plus where is Barb, and Rachael Harris? I miss them. All three comedies return on March 3rd to ABC.

Leverage – Leverage to me is one of the funniest shows on TV in a long while. The past few weeks with Nate’s ex-wife (played by the absolutely wonderful Kari Machett) coming back into the picture when she did not want him was fun, and the finale has started and I can say it finishes on a huge win. The last hour airing this Wednesday marks the return of some old favorites in a surprising turn, Jeri Ryan exits for now, and a cliff hanger till the summer that you will really want to know about. The best thing about the second half of the season was to see a pregnant Gina Bellman as Sophie in ever-changing outfits and locations from Africa to the super cliché in Eiffel Tower in the background Paris. Just fun.

Human Target – 12 million to 8 million is not the best thing to hear, however, it is very early for the action drama on FOX. I have not been enthralled by the series but last week’s episode “Run” which was originally the second episode showcased big action and story and that is what I like and want to see. The story they have introduced about Chance’s first case with a mysterious woman named Katherine is intriguing as well as Guerrero’s “side-projects” but if they are not in the mix each week I feel it will be lost in the action.

Lots to come as this drama is just finding its footing and the survival will all depend on FOX’s development slate and other performers like the dying Past Life and new entry Code 58 in the spring.

Burn Notice – Is it just me, or has this second half of the season been way uneven? This past Thursday’s episode has been the only one that I truly enjoyed. I feel like the action mixed with the character reactions have not been gelling together. The season is ending on March 4th and it will mark the return of some old pals that will change the game, and I can only hope it changes for the better.

Survivor – AMAZING TELEVISION. The two-hour première of Heroes vs. Villains was some of the best TV I have seen all year. Conflict, romance, injuries, tribals, survival, that were all so captivating to watch. Jerri and Coach’s romance was repulsing but so fascinating. I love the idea of reliving some of our favorite challenges from earlier years and I have some ones in my mind that I hope that do like the giant ball challenge from Guatemala and more. Just superb reality competition. More after the jump…. (more…)

This Week in Review!

Here is my thoughts on everything I watched this week, some short, some long, and some spoilers so be aware. What do you think on them all?

THE VAMPIRE DIARIESHow I Met Your Mother: Barney and Robin have been a highlight of all the episodes so far this season which has overall being pretty good. This week was episodes was one of the best of the year even though it marked the end of Barney and Robin. Alan Thicke was great in a fun cameo too.

Lie to Me: Can I just want to say I want Alicia Coppola on a show now. I loved her in Jericho and she was great as Agent Reynolds pal in this week Reynolds-centric outing. I have seen next week’s very much relevant episode on Black Friday and it is one of the best of the show.

So You Think You Can Dance: When the season started and they had that fantastic showcase show I thought this year would be outstanding, so far this year, so not. Nobody is wowing me except for maybe Jakob who is just so fun and brilliant. I still love Mollee and Nathan even though the performance was cringe-worthy.

V: V is my favorite new show this year. It is so epic in its feel and just fun to watch. Elizabeth Mitchell and Joel Gretsch are a perfect pair, and it was great to see Rekha Sharma (Battlestar Galactica) as a FBI friend of Erica or is she. Plus any show with Alan Tudyk is a win in my book. The one area the show lacks though is in the teenagers, better dialogue and story is needed or the ratings could just go down even further.

Melrose Place: Heather Locklear we need you know. Just a million viewers is pathetic for what is a pretty fun soapy drama, next week is the week. Amanda is back and will it help, I hope so.

The Good Wife: I would watch The Good Wife just for the judges alone who have all been great in the series and next week Peter Riegert comes to the panel, love him. This week presented a nice dilemma with a lawyer/non lawyer for Alicia and the story with the son keeps me interested in her personal life.

New Adventures of Old Christine: Julia Louis-Dreyfus is funny. Really funny. This cast is really fun which it turn makes me laugh so much.

Top Chef: She is gone and I am a little sad. Robin who should have been voted off in Week 1 finally had to pack her knives and somehow I don’t think the show will be as great just because of not as much drama. However, Nigella Lawson was the perfect judge. Opinionated, funny, and adorable, I wouldn’t mind her being on each week.

FlashForward: Like I have said before the show is not bad, the story is interesting and gets better when Rocky Jay shows up but the writing is not good, and that combined with the TERRIBLE acting of Joe Finnes overshadows any good performances by Christine Woods or John Cho. The show needs to get better soon with more episodes like last week’s fantastic “The Gift.”

Survivor: Best season EVER? With episodes like the last two with brilliant blindsides, I think so. Russell is one of the best contestants ever. Love this show.

Parks and Recreation: I love this show too. By far the funniest show on NBC and the second best comedy on air behind a certain ABC comedy. The supporting cast is unstoppable.

Private Practice: Last night’s episode was off the hook. I cried and was engrossed by the emotion and story in this medical drama. Everything was perfect except for the unnecessary last scene, brought me out of it just a little.

Fringe: This week, pretty good. Next week, fantastically freaky.

The Vampire Diaries: So this show is surprising me. As I watched it this summer, I hated it. Found it so cliched and stupid, now I look forward to it each week. This week was strong once again but the episode left me hanging and confused. First, Alaric is obviously a vampire of something but when the episode ended with Jenna’s old boyfriend and supposedly dead Logan, my first thought was that somehow Alaric changed his body to his. The reason I came to this conclusion was that he said something along the lines of “Will you let me in,” and when Alaric left the house he said something like “You will let me in some other time.” Just the way the dialogues intertwined made me think they were one in the same. Crazy or no?

Reminder Fall TV 2009: Private Practice is Back!

117218_062_preFlashForward and Grey’s Anatomy made big ratings last ABC for good reason, they are both quality reason the exact same reason you should be watching FlashForward tonight. But that reason has not been one always to watch Private Practice, which returns tonight at 10/9c.

The premiere episodes follows in the wake of Viloet’s (Amy Brenneman) getting cut open for her baby by a psycho. The episode is fantastic. A beautiful piece of TV, and one of the best premieres this year. The episode has great acting, and story but the real gem of the episode is in its construction, the direction the story is told is original, and intriguing. In the beginning you might think that the way the episode progresses might get old but in the end you are left wanting a lot more.

The acting by Kate Walsh, Audra McDonald, Paul Adelstein, Tim Daly, and Amy Brenneman is superb and the episode will leave you in tears in such a great way.

Private Practice airs tonight at 10/9c on ABC.

Private Practice & Grey’s Anatomy Crossover Event Starts Tonight: My First Look

00021460Tonight on ABC, two old companions start to come together for some special reasons. Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice begin to crossover into each others shows. I have seen tonight’s episodes of both Grey’s and Practice, and what ABC has been calling the start of the crossover is merely a phone call. That doesn’t mean it isn’t successful. 

The basis of the crossover will start with Practice. Addison’s brother Archer played by Grant Show, returns to LA and carries a big problem with him. After a great night with Naomi leeds to a scare. Archer has a medical problem which is so serious (I won’t disclose what it is here) that it requires Addison to call Derek back in Seattle to help. 

Overall the episode of Private Practice is solid. The other cases and stories are great and once again I was sobbing multiple times. It wasn’t the best but not bad. Violet is once again grappling with the idea of being pregnant. When she tells both Sheldon and Pete, they give one reaction that was not expected by her. The best story though was that of Cooper. He is so sweet, and even sweeter when he is with a kid. A little girl is left in the practice by her parents before her surgery to finally be able to walk freely after a car crash. He fights for this sweet little girl with all his heart.

First, I should mention that I do not watch Grey’s Anatomy, I have seen it a couple times and read enough about it over the years to know all the characters and what is going on with them. Now onto the episode, I quiet enjoyed it. It was funny and more soapy than the former but it did have some heart and tenderness. In the hour, Derek is preparing to propose to Merideth but since everybody knows except her it is hard for Derek to find the right time. Jennifer Westfeldt starts her guest stint also tonight as a pregnant women who runs over her husband, not fattally, but then has some complications of her own. The best parts for me though were Chandra Wilson who is so sweet and adorable, and Jessica Chapshaw as Arizona and Callie together. I love the girl-girl story line and find it so rare on TV other than The L Word. I was sad to hear the news early the season about Brooke Smith, I love her. 

I do recommend this event and hope when the actually “crossing-over” begins it will get even better. Grey’s Anatomy airs at 9/8c on ABC, and Private Practice following it tonight.

Previously on January 22nd, 2009

Some new television last night brought great reveals, new characters, and some of my favorites. Here was my take….

CSI: CSI has had it resurgence. I loved last night! Loved it. Dr. Langston fits great, he is quirky, fun, subdued, and I don’t want to put down Grissiom in any way, but he is a great addition. The scene with him cutting the trachea and opening the epiglottis was fun, and Katherine and him are a great duo. It was also great to see Riley again, I also though she is a great addition to the team. I do have one question, back in last season there was news that Liz Vassey was joining the regular cast, what happened? I love Liz. CSI is great once again.

Violet

Violet

Private Practice:  I cried, and I cried. PP is no longer a show that was a kid’s version of Grey’s. It is a full blown, hard hitting medical drama, whose cases are so gut wrenchingly beautiful, serious, and relevant. Sarah Drew returned as Judy and this time she was having her baby and of course the adoptive parents were stupid, and Judy backed out. This old plot is used a lot but on here it was still sad and beautiful. Pete and Sam were faced with the dilemma of assisted suicide. This is a rough topic but was handled beautifully on here. The old man was awesome, and the story prevalent.  The final story was about a women with agoraphobia (the fear of having panic attacks in public) and how her and Violet worked it out. Violet revealed that she is pregnant, who is the daddy? We don’t know. I love this show!

The Office:  Funny episode. Not as good as last week, but the Hillary Swank stuff was awesome. Overall, the show is doing well.

30 Rock:  I loved this week. The show is back and in a good way. I can’t really tell you what I like just that I liked it!

Burn Notice:  It is back and as good as ever. My personal fave Trica Helfer is in all the episodes for the rest of the season as Carla, and she was mad this week. It wasn’t her that tried to kill Michael and she wants to know who. The side story this week was that about medical scams. After Michael sees a man attempting suicide, he finds that he was scammed about his kid’s medicine. Michael and Fiona try to scam the scumbag women that does this and of course they are successful. I am so happy this show is back and make sure to catch it at the various times this weekend.