Sunday, September 30, 2012

2012 TV Fall - The First Wave

Never before have I had so many shows premiere at the same time!  Well, I suppose in the not so distant past, TV networks did adhere to the "premiere week," but there were only three networks.  Now with the additional networks and other popular cable channels, TV execs have been a little more strategic in their releases of shows, even premiering as late as October.  They still do this (like Touch and The Walking Dead), but what happened this last week?  I swear it feels like 90% of my shows came back in a new virtual "premiere week."

Whatever happened, my DVR is very busy and it will take me a while to catch up with all the premieres.  My DVR even missed recording Grimm this past Friday and I'm not very happy with Time Warner's system right now.  If you don't see your favorite sci-fi show listed below, give me another week or so.

A couple of weeks ago, I gave my thoughts on the Pre-Wave (shows that came out a little early or in late summer).  That included Alphas, Warehouse 13, Doctor Who, and Grimm.

Now my newest reviews ...

Revolution (2 episodes in): This show reminds me of Jericho and this is a good thing.  The world has fallen apart and governments have ceased.  Militia groups have risen up and try to gain control.  This show has a lot of potential.

But will they grab this potential?  The two episodes that I've watched were exciting enough to hold my attention, but it seems to be lacking something, which I'm still trying to figure out.  For example, just as Charlie's father dies, he sends her on a quest through the dangerous roads and dangerous city of Chicago to find her uncle ... something I would have expected to take a few episodes.  But no, after a commercial break or two, they waltz into Chicago with minimal intervention (except for those bozos who tried to rape and kill them, but no meetups with militia or anything like that) and they find her uncle very quickly.

I'll keep watching, though.  It feels like it's leading into something cool.

The Neighbors (1 episode in): This show is really missing something.  It might be called something known as "humor."  For example, in one scene, the alien wife keeps throwing plates out her window as her new-found human friend helps wash the dishes.  The human gives a funny look, but no other funny reactions?

The pacing of the jokes are very slow, and I noticed a lot of awkward silences.  These are probably meant for the audience to absorb the jokes, but when the jokes fall flat, it comes across as terrible editing.  Some music or even a laugh track could have helped.  (And if this show needs the obsolete laugh track, perhaps the show itself is obsolete.)

I'll give it one more try, but if they don't deliver, I'll be dropping this show.

Last Resort (1 episode in): There were some really good moments.  This could be an exciting show.

However, it felt like they crammed so much stuff into this one hour opening.  The pacing was very fast, and some things weren't explained very well.  I think a more effective opening would have been to take two hours to present that same amount of material with more explanations, and to give the audience more time to digest what's happening.

Did anyone understand the whole thing of the hide-your-signature device?  Was it on the submarine?  Or was it not?  If so, it didn't seem to work.  And if not, why did they bring it up?

I know absolutely nothing about the captain himself.  I don't understand why he made his initial decision to disobey direct orders.  And I'm not talking about the "it came through secondary channels" argument.  Most captains in real life would have carried out the order without hesitation, so what makes this captain so special to do the "right" thing?

The Pakistan incident means almost nothing to me, because nothing was shown other than blips on a map.  Did it really happen?  I don't know, because I didn't see it happening.

Did they really have to shove a useless sex scene in there?  And on a show airing at 8PM?  Better put your kids to sleep early Thursday nights, I suppose.

And crammed in at the very end are hints of two types of conspiracies, which are usually revealed in later episodes.  If the writers really felt the need to reveal hints of everything in the first episode, then is this all we get for the season?  Are they going to be stuck on that LOST-looking island for the whole season and fight a war on several different fronts?

But I'm assuming a lot from just one fast-paced episode.  It could be that they meet all my concerns in the next couple of installments.  There's a lot of potential in this show, and we'll see if they can maintain the energy.

Person of Interest (1 episode in): This show still has it.  It's still fun to watch Reese fight through everything.  Well, almost everything. 

Finch is now held captive by Root, some new villain.  She wants to set the computer free?  How exactly does that work? 

Reese is trying to blackmail the computer to reveal where Finch is, but will it work?

And who are those new people who fear going to Guantanamo Bay?  What do they know and what is their plan?

I can't wait to see how this season unfolds.

As an offside, anyone notice how the writer Jonathan Nolan loves to stick it to the rich greedy dudes in his stories (Batman movies and earlier episodes of Person of Interest)?  Long live the 99%, I suppose.

Haven (1 episode in): I'm really hoping this is the last season.  It feels like they're starting to wrap things up.  I like that the show still has a hint of Stephen King, but I doubt this show can last more than one season, and I want to see how it ends.

The first episode was interesting, though I must admit, I forgot why Nathan has that tattoo on his arm.  And also how Duke discovered/revealed his powers.  And when did Audrey get captured?

Who wants to bet that mysterious guy is the Colorado Kid?  Too easy, isn't it!

I'll keep watching, but probably after getting some of these other shows out of the way.  Please end the story!

The Office (2 episodes in): I'm glad this one's coming to an end.  The success of the UK series stems a lot from the fact that they only made a few episodes, and they brought it to a satisfying close in the Christmas Special.  The US series went on for so long, that for a while it hasn't had much direction.  Perhaps they'll find the direction needed now that an ending date is in sight.

A lot of people stopped watching when Michael left, but in some ways this show has gotten even funnier, as now the other characters have their chance to shine.

The first episode was pretty funny with new guys resembling Dwight and Jim.  And Angela trying to find a good home for her cat.

The second episode was okay, but as I watched it immediately after watching The Neighbors, it felt pretty dang funny.  They still got some energy going.  We'll see how things end, and hopefully see Michael Scott one last time.

1 comment:

Milo James Fowler said...

Revolution didn't grab me, but Last Resort did -- I'm willing to give it a shot.