Random TV Thread

OK, I've got nothin' today. Before I even started writing this, I just spent two hours trying to come up with something political to write about, and I can't do it. So, here is a random thread about television. I post this because I have come to enjoy a new, live action sitcom for the first time since, well, since I think I was in high school: 30 Rock. Really, really funny stuff that breaks the mold for live action TV in many ways, and where the four main characters (Tracey Morgan, Alec Bladwin, Tina Fey, and Jane Kowalski) are all well acted and well written. Watching a new sitcom is quite a departure from my usual TV viewing habits, which for the lat eighteen months have tended to center almost exclusively on Star Trek (Voyager marathon next week--oh yeah), Project Runway, Adult Swim, basketball (pro and college), the History Channel, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, and whatever little bits of Carnivale that I can still find. I actually hardly ever watch the news, whether it is cable, local, or network. I don't even really watch The Simpsons anymore. I am mad at Dave Chappelle for not finishing season three.

So, I want to know some things from you: what are you currently watching, and what I am missing? What would you recommend, and why? What are your general viewing habits? This is the sort of discussion that we might need once and a while to cool down, just chat a bit, and get to know each other better. If this goes well, I might reconstitute Friday culture threads from the ashes of the old Poetry Fridays, to cover other topics as well (music, movies, fashion, food, philosophy, etc). Or maybe I will have too much tow rite about in the future, and I won't do that. But anyway, let's have some fun. This is an open thread on television.

Tags: Culture, Open Threads (all tags)



We have gotten the Rome series

I love historical fiction.  So, at Blockbuster, I saw the "Rome" series. We don't have cable, so I took the first 2 disks (Ep 1-5).  Great stuff.  The action commenses at the start of the civil war between J Ceasar and Pompei Magnus, currently co-consuls of Rome.  Essentially, the series does the major characters with historically accurate info, but fills in the spaces on the canvas with interesting minor characters.

All of us in my family are enjoying this.

by dataguy 2006-12-15 08:41AM | 0 recs
Rome is good, but...

The Wire is an EXCELLENT show -- i thank god for HBO when I see that.
Also, Trailer Park Boys -- it's like 'The Office' in  a trailer park. It's a hit worldwide (made in Canada) but it's too 'edgy' for the USA.
Of course Arrested Development (arguably the best show ever made) is a self-referential piece of magic.

Family Guy is still good, American Dad is good IMHO, South Park keeps getting better and better, the most recent season of Reno 911! was excellent (the one before it wasn't as good...)
Real Time with Bill Maher is hit or miss but worth watching. I've heard good things about weeds but haven't taken the time to watch it.

I'd have to say that The Wire and Trailer Park Boys are the best/least known shows that are definitely worth watching.

by mermzilla 2006-12-15 10:28AM | 0 recs

I forgot about Lost (especially S1).

by mermzilla 2006-12-15 10:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Rome is good, but...

I'd like to second that emotion on "The Wire" - it's arguably one of the best shows ever made, and easily one of the best shows on TV right now . . . possibly THE best show on TV right now.  This past season (the fourth) may have been the best yet . . .

by KJS 2006-12-15 10:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Rome is good, but...

I'd say 1, 3, and 4 are all equally amazing. 2 is only slightly less excellent.

by mermzilla 2006-12-15 10:40AM | 0 recs
Chris: Next Time You Want to Stimulate....

this kind of discussion, we could use some help in deciding which movies to see during the holidays.

by Arthurkc 2006-12-15 11:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

The Office is the one show I will pretty much do anything not to miss.  (Well, that, and the fact that I was considering not taking a night class in school cause it conflicted with Lost.  But, just those two.)

Anyway, the Office.  My kind of humor- sarcastic, weird, mean and with a lot of uncomfortable silences.

by DanielUA 2006-12-15 08:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I love The Office!

And Family Guy, Real Time, Countdown, and of course, the Span

by nibit25 2006-12-15 08:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I don't watch The Office, but I've heard it compares well with Arrested Development, which is probably the best comedy I've seen (far outstrips Seinfeld, another favorite of mine).

by PsiFighter37 2006-12-15 08:52AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

The Office is quite different, stylistically speaking, from Arrested but they are both unbelievably hilarious.

I totally agree about Arrested ranking up there with Seinfeld though.

by beeswax49 2006-12-15 09:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Arrested Development is probably my favorite comedy, period.  I really miss that show.

by whogotthegravy 2006-12-15 10:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I, too, miss it...but I'm also strangely relieved and happy that it got to bow out before it became bad, if that makes sense.  It's just consistent quality thru all three seasons.

by beeswax49 2006-12-15 01:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I'll also throw in for The Office.  It's my favorite comedy airing right now and it should be an easy watch for you Chris--it's on just an hour before 30 Rock.  Smart, weird, sarcastic, and really observant socially--it just adds up to a great show every week.

Also love Scrubs, which is generally a half hour of pure silliness and has great, likable characters.  That's on right before 30 Rock.

Other shows--I agree with a comment below that Heroes has turned out to be a great drama, very fun and exciting, compelling, great characters.  If you like comic books or have enjoyed the better comic book movies, it's really worth checking out.

And The Wire.  This is one of the greatest shows ever made, period.  The quality of it, every episode, is astounding.  Pretty much every airing is like watching a very well-made movie.  It's handle on social and political issues is incredible.  If you haven't seen The Wire, start getting the DVDs and watching, but make sure you start with season one and work your way up.  Don't jump into it in the middle.

Haven't watched season four yet since I don't have HBO, but I hear it's excellent, as all the other seasons have been.  Deals with the public school system.  Can't wait to see The Wire's take on that.

by aimlessmind 2006-12-15 09:30AM | 0 recs
You can download it
a) Season 4 is great, as usual
b) you can download the whole 4th season at a torrent site a-la torrentspy.com
by mermzilla 2006-12-15 10:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

You have to watch a new show - also on NBC - called Heroes. Hands-down, this is the best new drama I've been excited about since 24 and Alias debuted in 2001. With Alias having finished and 24 slowly declining in quality (while going up in popularity - not surprising), this is my new show.

I also watch Studio 60, but it's more for kicks than anything else. A lot of people don't like it, as it pales to Sorkin's past work with The West Wing (which I didn't watch, surprisingly enough), but it's better than the same old crime dramas that are overplayed on TV these days.

by PsiFighter37 2006-12-15 08:42AM | 0 recs

that's the only new show i got hooked on this year.  it's amazing.  i cannot say enough good things about it.  and they were rewarded with a golden globe nomination for best drama yesterday. w00t!

here's a random heroes factoid: the guy that plays nathan petrelli - adrian pasdar - is married to the dixie chicks' natalie maines.  so there's another reason to support the show.  ;^)

by annatopia 2006-12-15 09:27AM | 0 recs

I don't really watch Heroes, but the art on the show is done by one of the best artists in comics -- Tim Sale.

by whogotthegravy 2006-12-15 09:30AM | 0 recs

hey thanks for the info.  i was wondering who was responsible for the artwork.  love it!

by annatopia 2006-12-15 09:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Yup, by far, the best new show is HEROES.  The storyline is, er, layered, to say the least; the characters have complex motivations; and the visuals, for TV, are awesome.

Anyhow, good show.

I've just started tuning to 30 Rock and I like it so far.

by bedobe 2006-12-15 10:11AM | 0 recs
yes on Heroes

I also like the new show Daybreak on ABC.  

by John DE 2006-12-15 11:36AM | 0 recs
Best show on TV.


Season 4 just ended, and it is the most realistic drama on TV.

by Sam Loomis 2006-12-15 08:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Best show on TV.

This was the first season that I have watch, but it is fabulous.  Dexter is my favorite new show.  The opening credits are awesome.

by juls 2006-12-15 09:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Best show on TV.

If you're not watching Dexter, you're missing the best show on TV.  Imo, it is the best single season of a TV show since the first season of the Sopranos.  Just like the 1st season of Sopranos, you are emotionally invested in every character in the show.  it is the only show that my wife and I look forward to every week.  The season finale is on Sunday and the wait is killing me.

by Stahlsworth 2006-12-15 09:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Make sure not to miss star trek marathon, on everyday on Spike, it starts in 15 minutes EST so grab the remote!

Also, recomend Entourage highly...

by epv72 2006-12-15 08:45AM | 0 recs
Battlestar Galactica

If you're not watching, you're missing the best political drama on TV.  Daring plotlines (name another show from the Bush era in which insurgents battling an occupying force are depicted as the heroes), always morally complex, with terrific acting.  Best show on TV, in my opinion.

by ChicagoJason 2006-12-15 08:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Battlestar Galactica

Absolutely agree.  Battlestar Galactica is just about the only thing my husband and I won't miss.  It's by far the best sci-fi show on TV (we're big sci-fi geeks), and I would agree that it's the best show over all.


by Sarah R Carter 2006-12-15 09:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Battlestar Galactica

It really is one of the best TV dramas, ever, and one of the best sci-fi series, ever.  It's quite possibly the best show on television right now.

Real politics, real science for the most part (nukes instead of photon torpedos, and no heisenberg compensators, thank you) and tons of real development of complex characters.  And often the treatment of politics forces you to see and even agree with the other side.  I even felt bad for Baltar (a main bad guy) in one episode, and they aren't afriad to occasionally kill off charaters.  And the score is great, too.

The only other sci-fi I really liked for it's character development was ST DS9, and it turns out it's by the same guy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heisenberg_ compensator

by skintigh 2006-12-15 10:02AM | 0 recs
Re: Battlestar Galactica

I have to second Battlestar Galactica.  I love Trek,  but the new Galactica is so complex and fearless it is amazing. A lit prof and I once discussed how you can lean on every word in a James Joyce novel, and it is substantial.  Battlestar is the same way, every shot, every word have purpose.  And past always haunts the characters.  I always walk away thinking that was an amazing piece of art that will not be topped, and then the next ep tops it.  Also, as said before, the political commentary is complex and second to none.  And probably more realistic than anything the West Wing showed (although I loved West Wing when Sorkin wrote for it)

Other things:
Prison Break

Guilty Pleasure:
The OC
American Idol

Dearly Departed:
Arrested Development (maybe the most subversive/perverse show ever on network TV)

by bhirsh26 2006-12-15 10:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Battlestar Galactica

Absolutely.  I also like to tell people that BSG isn't a SciFi show, it's a war show.  It just so happens that it takes place in space.

by brothermaynard 2006-12-15 11:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

"I just spent two hours trying to come up with something political to write about, and I can't do it."

If you don't have anything to say, don't talk.

by Liberal Avenger 2006-12-15 08:49AM | 0 recs

Galactica is the best show on television right now.

by taylormattd 2006-12-15 08:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I bought the complete 5-season DVD set of "Six Feet Under" as a gift, and opened it up on a whim.  The down side is I guess I gotta buy it again, but the up-side is it's astonishing TV.

by hoose 2006-12-15 08:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

If you haven't seen the first four seasons, you're really missing out. The first and second seasons are my favorites, but the entire series is excellent.

Not for the feint of heart, however, especially an episode in Season 4 in which David goes through a horrific ordeal. That one I don't recommend watching (it's got the word "dog" in the title, so watch out for it).

by robin oz 2006-12-15 09:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

The only shows my wife and I watch with regularity are House, the Daily Show, and Colbert.  We'll occasionally watch something on the National Geographic channel.  I watched tons of debates on Cspan in October, but I don't watch that much, otherwise.

I don't watch TV news (I'm glad Olberman is liberal and all, but I still don't find the program especially intertesting or informative). I do watch sports, especially now that we have a DVR and it takes about an hour to watch a game.

BTW, DVR is the way to go.  We watch what we want to watch when we want to and I don't have to sit through any commercials.

by danielj 2006-12-15 09:00AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

well, to be fair to Keith, political junkies would never find any news program "informative"!!!!  We read to much on these intenets and the google.  

by JAmbro 2006-12-15 09:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Ditto for House. That's the only scripted show that I watch new episodes of these days. I suppose I should be watching Battlestar, but I've missed so much and am unsure whether I should just jump right in.

by robin oz 2006-12-15 09:22AM | 0 recs
battlestar lost me

in the middle of the third season.  i missed a few episodes and never caught up.  i turned it on to watch it a few weeks ago and was like "WTF HAPPENED???"

at this point, i'm so lost that i think i give up.  but the husband is a big fan.  he doesn't know it yet but he's getting the dvds for xmas. =)

by annatopia 2006-12-15 09:29AM | 0 recs
Re: battlestar lost me

Battlestar overdoes it on the drama a bit for me.  Also, I really dislike Apollo and Starbuck.  Although that keeps me from being a regular viewer, the stuff they do with the Cylons is fascinating.

by whogotthegravy 2006-12-15 09:37AM | 0 recs
Re: battlestar lost me

He does now. Thank you!

by just another vet 2006-12-16 05:23AM | 0 recs
A Few Things...

Studio 60. Law & Order (just about any edition, but the original circa Jill Hennessy and Chris Noth is probably my facvority era). Scrubs. Colbert Report. Daily Show. Countown. Harball. Family Guy. The occassional Seinfeld or Simpsons rerun.

by Jonathan Singer 2006-12-15 09:02AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Ever since I got Tivo, the amount of shows I have to watch has sky rocketed.  

But I agree with the "Heroes" poster above.  Best.  New.  Show.

But also 24, Lost, Scrubs, BSG, Family Guy, South Park.

Simpsons sucks these days, you aren't missing ANYTHING.  I'm in shock they are doing a movie NOW, after all this time!

by JAmbro 2006-12-15 09:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Get rid of the Republicans...

Save the world.

by yitbos96bb 2006-12-15 10:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Agreed. Simpsons has gone way down hill. But there show on Iraq right before the election I think helped.

What has taken over for me is.  American Dad

by rapallos 2006-12-15 10:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

As mentioned by nearly everyone here, "The Office."  It's tops as far as sitcoms.  "Extras" on HBO is quite funny as well if you're a Gervais fan from the original "Office" series.  The only serial drama show I really follow is "Lost."  Other than that, I enjoy "Dirty Jobs" and "Mythbusters" and a whole host of other shows on that TLC, Discovery monolith.  My secret guilty pleasure, though, is America's Funniest Home Videos.

by beeswax49 2006-12-15 09:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Oof, I can't imagine surviving any kind of Voyager marathon.  Deep Space Nine, on the other hand--that's doable.

My favorite shows right now are Daily Show/Colbert, Scrubs, 24, and Lost (but I've been slipping recently).  As far as defunct shows go, "Firefly" is a sentimental favorite--and even though it only lasted 1/2 a season, the episodes that they did make really counted.

Oh yeah, and I'm always up for an old episode of Rod Serling-era Twilight Zone.

by HellofaSandwich 2006-12-15 09:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I do a lot of my tv watching via Netflix.
So, Rome and Carnivale are the best things I've seen lately.

I sit down to watch tv on Sunday nights and watch a bunch of dull shows surrounding The Family Guy.

There's a few shows on Comedy Central worth watching, but half the time its a Chapelle rerun I've seen 8 times already.

Sometimes I watch Olbermann.

I love Mythbusters.

I watch a lot of CSI reruns.  They're like Law and Order reruns.  It seems like some channel somewhere is playing CSI.

I do like the thursday night NBC lineup - Office, Earl, 30 rock.  But, I never remember to watch.

I'll be netflixing all those along with Heroes and Lost (one of these days).

That's my tv preferences.  I've been either really busy with stuff at night lately (The Illinois Dem Net Holiday party was this week - great times!), or playing Final Fantasy 12.

by JJCPA 2006-12-15 09:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

i don't watch tv all that much.  but when i do, it's usually law and order.  i had hopes for the 4400, but it's too slow-paced.  i don't own a tivo, so i never catch battlestar gallactica, though it's quite good.  i definitely never watch TV news.  i'll wait til i'm 80 for that heart murmur and leaky bowels.

by beyondo98 2006-12-15 09:15AM | 0 recs
Well worth Tivoing-Davinci's Inquest

The BEST show on Broadcast TV is a Canadian Rerun called DaVinci's Inquest.

Rather than go into what is about, I suggest you follow this link to a good rundown on the show.

http://www.teevee.org/archive/2003/11/05 /index.html

It is currently running every day on WGN at noon, and it will be cycling back to year one next week (the show run 8 years in Canada, 13 episodes a year.)

It is a little like CSI, a little like Homicide, and a lot like The Wire, in that it doesn't insult the intelligence of views.

If you are looking for something new, and excellent, I can't recommend this show enough.

Even though it has been a short time in US syndication, it has attracted a small but growing cult following.

by nanorich 2006-12-15 09:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Well worth Tivoing-Davinci's Inquest

Agreed.  How many shows feature a gritty yet socially progressive ex-cop coroner?

I really appreciate the technical work.  One episode began with must have been a 7-8 min scene filmed with a handheld without a single edit.  Brilliantly done.

by Disputo 2006-12-15 12:58PM | 0 recs
my name is earl is the greatest!

LOVE that show!!  jaime pressley is a complete scene stealer.  i swear i LMAO every time she's onscreen.  she remind me of so many girls i grew up with in the deep south.  she's just too damned funny.

love the office, too.  just picked up the season 1 dvd last week.  

by annatopia 2006-12-15 09:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Studio 60, Friday Night Lights (my wife's fave), 30 Rock, ER, The Daily Show, Colbert Report, The Wire, some NFL football, and now and then some great old 1930s b/w movie on Turner Classics -- damn, that seems like a lot of TV -- too much.

Won't watch 24 any longer -- can't help but think that the show helped prepare our nation to accept Bush's toirture policy.

by Arthurkc 2006-12-15 09:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Eh, I'm still going to watch 24 this next season (I said I wouldn't, but I'm more hooked than I thought), but the actual stories of the show - after the third season, the quality went straight down the tubes. Add to the fact that they killed off the 3 other characters on the show who were the essential foundation from seasons past, and I just can't care enough about the plot anymore.

I'll watch it for the action, along with the fact that I'd like to see just how Jack Bauer ends up meeting his fate, but it's no longer a must-watch for myself.

by PsiFighter37 2006-12-15 09:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

You're one of the few I have ever heard say they thought the first 3 were better than the last two... in fact most people I have either read or talked to about it think last season was not only the best ever for the show, but one of the best in the history of TV for any show (on caliber with Sopranos Season 1).  To each their own, but I'm shocked you liked Kim and Mountain Lion over President Logans scheme.  

I was upset to see those characters die along with Edgar though... That did annoy me... Really wanted to see Kim bite it instead.  

by yitbos96bb 2006-12-15 10:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I know that most people liked the last two. Last season was shocking, but the thing is that the plot made absolutely no sense when one thought about it. In the first 3 seasons, while there were certainly some outlandish plot concepts (the mountain lion being one, along with bringing Sherry back for season 3), the whole thing ran together. You had characters you genuinely cared about (Tony and Michelle come immediately to mind; they had just as compelling a story as Jack did by the end of season 3), and you had a Jack Bauer that wasn't completely robotic. Logan's 'scheme' in day 5 made zero sense, no matter how one tried to piece it together. Henderson suddenly coming out of a coma to kill Tony - what a joke of a way to kill off arguably the second-most important character in the show's history.

I could go on, but there are so many things that are infuriating about the last 2 seasons of 24 that it'd take a long time. Not to mention the fact that '24' can hardly call itself real-time anymore. The abuses of the format have become blatantly obvious in the past 2 seasons.

by PsiFighter37 2006-12-15 10:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Well the abuses have been there from the start... Most famously the fact that you can get to LA anywhere in 20 minutes...

TO each there own... The plot of 24 from all seasons are all a little far fetched... first of all, they have the worst security in the history of the world with the number of traitors and peeople who can break into CTU.  No one guy is having that many bad days... overall though, it is TV and there is an element of suspension of disbelief.  Of course for a show that is supposed to be a tad more realistic, check out MI-5.

by yitbos96bb 2006-12-16 01:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

You do know there are 300 million people who live in the US and only about 10-15 million watch 24...

Sorry Arthur, but that comment is just plain ridiculous... don't watch if you don't want to but to make that claim is messed up.

by yitbos96bb 2006-12-15 10:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

30 Rock and The Office are the best sitcoms on right now.  I feel like 30 Rock has really grown into itself after a few shaky early episodes.

I don't think it can really be emphasized enough how good The Wire is--no TV show in any genre has ever been better, or really ever come close.  To my mind it blows everything else on HBO (including The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, etc) out of the water.  Rent the Season 1 DVDs and take it from the beginning.

by Hoover1 2006-12-15 09:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I think my ethos here is pretty outstanding, so i'll say without qualifying that west wing, six feet under, sopranos, the shield, the wire, brotherhood (showtime), lost, heroes, weeds, boston legal, studio 60, dexter are classics and can be purchased on dvd right here at www.amazon.com!

Amazon rates number 1 in customer service by customer service raters of america.  It's one stop shopping for all your post-lapsarian gift giving needs!

by mikedee 2006-12-15 09:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

"Six Feet Under" is airing on BRAVO, two episodes every Monday starting at 9. I started at the beginning, and am riveted.

As a former "Ugly Betty" myself, I'm loving that new show. It has an amazing amount of heart.

For my reality show jones, I love "The Amazing Race."

Otherwise, I like to watch "House," "Medium," "Nip/Tuck," but not with any regularity. And I'm trying to decide whether or not to commit to "24" when it gets going.

by da0802 2006-12-15 09:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Everybody already mentioned the Office, which is the best show on TV.  Consistently awesome.  I also like 30 Rock.  I've been grossly disappointed so far by Studio 60.

Everyone needs to be watching Veronica Mars, though it's not quite as steady as it was the first season.  They've also had to resort to embarrassing amounts of product placement and integration because of their ratings.

Star Trek... Voyager caused me to become violently physically ill.  I've looked back on Star Trek recently, and wonder how I sat through most of TNG too (I'm too young to ever have enjoyed TOS).  I tried really hard to give Enterprise a chance, but I couldn't make it more than a season and a half.  DS9 was clearly the best, but it really went through some irritating stretches.

Simple proof of the non-existance of God:

  1. Firefly lasted 11 episodes
  2. Voyager lasted 400 fucking years
ergo, there is no God.  QED.

Battlestar was really cool at first, but with the exception of maybe one episode this season, and the last two or three of the last half season, it's been really horrible.  The writing is terrible, and you can't end up caring about any of the themes or characters because it's so disorganized and unplanned.  Like last week they bring back some character that you haven't seen for a year and kill her off and you're supposed to get all weepy.  She was introduced out of the blue the first time around, and she was so annoying to begin with, so you never cared anyway.  And every time the crew starts applauding I want to start whipping Wiimotes at the TV.  My only guess is that they're trying to banish evil spirits that appear every time a crew member makes a groan-inducing speech.

The sad part is how the show is so uneven.  When it's good, its really, really fucking good.  Like when the Admiral orders the attack on the Pegasus, or when Kallee forgives the Chief or when the Galactica hot-drops into the atmosphere of New Caprica, I'm jumping and cheering and crapping my pants.  But most of the time, the show is just lost in the woods.

by fwiffo 2006-12-15 09:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I'm a TVaholic.

That said, the only thing new I've added this year is:
Heroes - snuck up on me. Thought the premise was too wierd, and wound up falling completely for the show.

Friday Night Lights -I love intelligent sports programming, and this is well written and well acted.

30 Rock - I wish Alec Baldwin had let us know five years ago that he was this funny. I SOOOO want this show to make it. I  think it's finally coming into its own groove, but just needs time to work out the kinks.

Shark - James Woods. Prepared to hate it, because he can grate on the nerves, but haven't missed a show.

Have you tried Hu$tle on AMC? Very smart show.

by rikyrah 2006-12-15 09:39AM | 0 recs
Joss Whedon

Just as an aside - Joss Whedon needs to get a lead pipe and go into every writing room of every show and beat the hell out of everyone.  That's the only long-term fix for a lot of the crap on TV, and even most of the good stuff.

by fwiffo 2006-12-15 09:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Joss Whedon

Joss Whedon is fantastic, but Network TV has improved over the last few years... thanks to HBO and Showtime and FX showing them up.

by yitbos96bb 2006-12-15 10:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Joss Whedon

If you're in need of some Joss Whedon, he does write comics too.  Right now he writes Astonishing X-Men, and is soon to take over writing on Runaways.  I heard that he's doing another "Season" of Buffy in comic book form, too.

by whogotthegravy 2006-12-15 10:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Joss Whedon

I think he is making a Wonder Woman movie too.

by juls 2006-12-15 10:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Joss Whedon

About 10 years ago, I bought a copy of the Joss Wheedon script of Alien Resurrection.  It was probably before the director of Delicatessen came in and changed it, but it rocked!  I actually like said director, but he was probably the wrong person for the job.  If they had just filmed the script I had read, it would have resurrected the franchise.

by NY Expat 2006-12-15 02:49PM | 0 recs
It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia

"It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" is by far the first live action sitcom that I've enjoyed since Seinfeld. It's freaking hilarious - check it out.

In terms of drama, "The Wire" is probably my favorite tv show of all time. It's an incredible story and Bawlmer rocks.

by Les Mots et les Choses 2006-12-15 09:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

OK, here's what I do.
First, TV for me is part of multi-tasking: I listen to it while working on my computer, and if something sounds interesting, I look.

What do I watch?
1. If I haven't been watching TV much, like NPR's ATC has just finished, and I've been listening to ATC since coming home from work, I'll flip to CNN Headline News to catch the latest.

2. Then its time for the Lehrer report on PBS.

3. After that, I check out C-SPAN. If I find something decent there, I may just let it run for hours.

4. Otherwise I may check out Anderson Cooper 360, which is CNN's version of in-depth reporting.

5. If the 4 above come up dry, I may just channel surf. Last night, this led me to a great POV rebroadcast on PBS on Hula beyond Hawaii. I actually WATCHED a bunch of it.

6. But then I also look for Women's collegiate-level Volleyball (the NCAA Finals are this weekend!!! Our Hawaii team made it to the Elite 8!!!), Women's Collegiate or Pro Basketball, Men's college football (University of Michigan-- Go Blue!!!), Men's pro Football (teams of interest, such as the New England Patriots or Denver Broncos), or baseball (St. Louis Cardinals-- unfortunately, most of the World Series was on during my work hours, so I didn't see much of it.)

Most of the time is actually on 1-5, except on weekends. Mostly, I can't stand to watch Republicans, except in Senate hearings.

Bob in HI

by Bob Schacht 2006-12-15 09:43AM | 0 recs
my list

i don't watch too many shows - usually end up recording them during the week when i'm in class and catching up on the weekend.

it's a short list: heroes, the office, my name is earl, drawn together (it's so wrong, i love it!), reno 911, countdown, abfab (i have all the dvds - god i wanna be patsy), lost, daily show, colbert, and gilmore girls.  

and i really have to put in major props for gilmore girls.  yea yea, i know all you guys won't get it, but it's one of the best shows on tv.  the creator and head writer (well, up till this season) is super liberal.  the dialogue is always witty and brassy and they manage to get a lot of digs in at republicans.  one of my all time favorite episodes was when one of the characters was running for town selectman. the episode originally aired on october 12, 2004, right before the election and was titled "Tippecanoe and Taylor, Too!". this great bit is my favorite scene:

[Sookie walks around the diner and shakes hands with the other customers, while she hands out buttons.]

SOOKIE: So good to meet you. And see you at the polls! [pauses at another table] Hey, aren't you two handy with a knife and fork. [ Squeals to the parents while handing out buttons] Cute kids. Yeah! There you go. Hi. Good morning. Go, Jackson. [she joins Lorelai at a decorated dining table. Lorelai is talking on her cell phone.]

LORELAI: Well, when it comes to noise pollution, Jackson Belleville hears you loud and clear. That's right. Thank you so much for your time, and we'll see you at the polls. [clicks off the phone] Okay, I think I can make it through the G's before my phone gives out.

SOOKIE: [holds up her phone] I got mine right here.


[Kirk enter Luke's Diner and approaches them. He is dressed in a suit and clipboard looking like a typical pollster]

KIRK: Ladies, I offer myself up to you and your cause.

LORELAI: What's this?

KIRK: I took it upon myself to poll the town, and I think you're gonna be pretty happy with the results. SOOKIE: We are?

KIRK: Jackson is solidly in the lead.

LORELAI: Already? We just started bugging people.

KIRK: Well, I modeled my poll after the Gallup poll. The Gallup poll uses a sample of 1,005 voters to represent the 280 million people of the United States. Using that logic, the correct sampling size of the town of Stars Hollow would be 0.002. Rounding that up means one person needs to be polled, so I picked me.

LORELAI: You polled yourself?

KIRK: I was right there. Seemed like a perfect opportunity.

LORELAI: Okay. Well, first of all, thank you for dressing up to talk to yourself. And secondly, I think you're gonna need to poll more people to get a better sense of where we really are.

KIRK: Oh. Okay, I'll see what I can do.

LORELAI: Thanks, Kirk. [Kirk exit the diner]

by annatopia 2006-12-15 09:43AM | 0 recs
Re: my list

How I could forget Reno 911!?!?!?!?  They're doing a movie too, right?  I've watched the first seven episodes of this season, dunno if they've done any beyond that.

by whogotthegravy 2006-12-15 10:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Weeds. Showtime is worth the fee just for this show. Plus they have Dexter, with the most sympathetic serial killer you'll ever see anywhere.

by lapis 2006-12-15 09:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Oh Weeds yes!  The season was waaay too short.

by juls 2006-12-15 09:58AM | 0 recs
I'm a downloader.

Can't live without Battlestar Galactica (very incisive politically actually, as well as a damn fine drama... not just for the average scifi fan), Heroes (although they should really just call it X-men!), The Wire, and the New Doctor Who...
I watch a bunch of stuff on DVD too... Deadwood is a favorite.

The American office is great! (as was the BBC one, but no more being made of course)

BSG should be a must watch by anybody in the political blogosphere for the New Caprica occupation /Iraq similarities alone.



by neutron 2006-12-15 09:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I love The Office too!  I'm one of the few people that liked both the UK and the US versions.  Great characters and premise.

The only other show I watch on a regular basis is actually a kids show... Avatar:  The Last Airbender.  I doubt I'd be able to convince any of you to watch it, but its a great show regardless.

by whogotthegravy 2006-12-15 09:59AM | 0 recs

A must-watch show.

Also "24" -- besides the action, it's interesting to see how conservative ideas are well-written into this show -- a far cry from "The Path to 9/11" -- and therefore much more persuasive to the general public.

by LiberalFromPA 2006-12-15 10:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

HBO and SHowtime shows are awesome... Weeds may be one of the best things I have seen.

24, Lost, Prison Break, Heroes, Simpsons, South Park, Adult Swim, History Channel items, Family Guy, American Dad, The Office, My Name is Earl, Studio 60...

Been rewatching Arrested Development on DVD... boy I miss that show...  WORST. CANCELLATION. EVER.

by yitbos96bb 2006-12-15 10:03AM | 0 recs
TV, new and old

Well, we have to watch The Office and Scrubs.  Can't miss 'em.  If you're looking for comedy that's smart, this is it.  And that seems to be where TV comedy is trending, as you mention with 30 Rock, Chris.  We caught it last night, and may well give it a go.  

I'm sorry to hear you don't watch The Simpson's anymore -- after all these years, it's still totally worth it.    

Both my wife and I watch Prison Break religiously.  You'd think it'd get stale after awhile, but they really have managed to keep it fresh and as realistic as a show like that can be.

We only have basic cable, so whenever I go to my in-law's place, they have us hooked on Showtime's Weeds and now we're getting in to Dexter, both of which are worth your time.  

In the news department, I find myself at sea in terms of which nightly news anchor to follow.  I was a Tom Brokaw guy for forever.  I tried to give Katie Couric every chance, I really did.  But I... just can't do it.  I swear to God,it's not a she's-a-woman thing.  Right now about the best I can do is Brian Williams.

I always watch Countdown with Keith whenever it doesn't conflict with anything else.  I constantly worry that he's going to get to formulaic, or rely too heavily on the recycled crap from The Today show, which my wife forces us to watch (I'd indulge my naughty Imus fetish if I could...)  

If reality TV were a person, I'd probably kill them.  And whatever "game shows" are on now require so little of the contestants, it takes more skill to pick up the remote and change the channel than to do whatever it is they're doing ("I'll take case number two, Howie!")  

by bjk816 2006-12-15 10:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

How about discussing Rumsfeld's absurd comment that Bush is a victim of his success.  Rumsfeld essentially said that, because there had been no terrorist attacks on our soil, all Bush's productive work at defending us had been worth it, yet had gone unrecognized.  WTF, there have been no terrorist attacks because Bush has done more damage to the U.S. than Osama could have hoped for.  Osama has not had to do any further prompting. If things begin to go well here and around the world, Osama may have to strike again.  Until then Bush is doing an admirable job of doing Osama's distructive work for him.

by Awfergu 2006-12-15 10:12AM | 0 recs
Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip Rocks!

I know Studio 60 isn't for all tastes.  But I love Sorkin's dialog and the cultural subrefrences.  My wife throws up her hands at a lot of them (WTF are they talking about!?!?) and she insists on having the subtitles on because sometimes it's so rapid fire.  I had no idea how good Mathew Perry was.  He and Bradley Whitford have a great rapport.  It's the only network/cable TV I watch other than Olberman, C-Span and some History Channel.

Then there is Dexter.  Wow.  A serial killer that only kills serial killers.  What a concept!  Great show and for avante garde tastes if you can take it.

by DuvalDem 2006-12-15 10:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Glad to see Adult Swim is already in the mix.  Family Guy and American Dad are huge fun.

I always try to catch the Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy, and whenever they trot one out, Courage the Cowardly Dog, both on the Cartoon Network.  

My adult daughter caught me watching Grim Adventures on my kitchen TV one evening and started teasing me about being too old for toons.  Now she's hooked too!

If I need drama, I just stay at the office.

by zak822 2006-12-15 10:13AM | 0 recs
Rumsfeld Tribute: Whither Les Aspin?

In an elaborate ceremony carried live on all the cable news networks, President Bush and Vice President Cheney feted the disgraced Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld with glowing words, military pomp and even a 19 gun salute. "This man knows how to lead and he did," Bush declared, "and the country is better off for it."

Rumsfeld, it seems, will not be held to the GOP's "Les Aspin Standard." That is, decisions that needlessly cost American lives in battle cost defense secretaries their jobs, but apparently only if Bill Clinton is president.

For the details, see:
"Flashback: Rumsfeld Celebrated, Aspin Slandered."

by AvengingAngel 2006-12-15 10:22AM | 0 recs
Gilmore Girls

The only show I make sure I watch.

But why is Loralie is now with Luke is beyond me.

by rapallos 2006-12-15 10:33AM | 0 recs
you mean christopher right?

it boggles the mind, doesn't it?  i think amy sherman palladino was writing every character on her show into a garbage pail last year.  she knew she was leaving and seemed to take a real slash and burn attitude to the show.

i always pictured the show ending with luke and lorelai getting married under the huppa he built her. but now, i'm not so sure the writers can dig those characters out of that hole.

by annatopia 2006-12-15 10:54AM | 0 recs
Re: you mean christopher right?

wooops, typo.  should have been "huppah" not "huppa"

by annatopia 2006-12-15 10:55AM | 0 recs
Re: you mean christopher right?

Used to really enjoy this show, but I think they jumped the shark.  The scenery is still very nice, though.

by hoose 2006-12-15 11:00AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Daily Show, Colbert Report, Scrubs, Arrested Development.

by Fran for Dean 2006-12-15 10:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Many people have already said this but it's worth repeating.  The Wire is the best/most important show on TV.  It tackles social issues and challenges its audience.  I don't want to ruin to for anyone, but one death in season one still pains me.  Everyone should watch The Wire.

by TulaneDem 2006-12-15 10:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I love 30 Rock.  Alec Baldwin is hilarious in that show.  This has been the first season in a LONG time where I have found more than one new show that I like.  Studio 60 (I miss The West Wing so much) & Heroes (guilty pleasure) are quite good.  

As for shows already on the air, I never miss The Office, Scrubs, Medium, Nip/Tuck, Reno 911, Grey's Anatomy & Desperate Housewives (the guiltiest pleasure).  Thank god for DVR's.

But before I watch any of these on my DVR, I watch Countdown w/ Keith Olbermann for my political fix.  I'll even scan through Hardball & Joe Scarborough (what's with that Michael Crowley guy being on virtually every single night?) for semi-interesting stuff.

by IsThisOverYet 2006-12-15 10:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I can't believe I forgot The Daily Show & The Colbert Report.

by IsThisOverYet 2006-12-15 10:53AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Studio 60 is my current obsession.  Pretty much anything Sorkin's involved with, I'll watch though.

Prison Break is my favorite in the "serial drama" genre.

College football and basketball.  Pro football.  Pro basktball and baseball only when I can catch my hometown team (which isn't that often, since I don't actually live in my hometown any more).

When I have access to cable, I watch a lot of Sportcenter and the Food Channel (especially Alton Brown, Mario Battali and Giada de Laurentis - I'm pretty sure I butchered the spelling of at least two of those).

by libdevil 2006-12-15 11:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Shows you should plan to watch:

The Office
My Name is Earl
30 Rock

Other Stuff that's good if you're bored:

Veronica Mars
The Amazing Race
CSI: Miami

Objectively terrible shows that people inexplicably love:

Grey's Anatomy
Studio 60
Desperate Housewives

The Show to watch after The Daily Show and The Colbert Report:

The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson

And Finally,

The Only Traditional Fixed-Camera Sitcom Worth Watching:

How I Met Your Mother

by Reece 2006-12-15 11:24AM | 0 recs
DD"s Primetime Viewing

Simpsons, American Dad, Family Guy, reruns of the West Wing, Rome, reruns of Six Feet Under and Sopranos, Grey's Anatomy, Jericho, Lost, and reruns of ST: TNG.  

Where is this Voyager marathon?????????  I'll watch that.

by Delaware Dem 2006-12-15 11:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Little People/Big World  I love the interaction of dwarf parents and mostly normal size kids.
It's on various of the Discovery channels at different times.

The Sopranos I live in the area where it is supposed to be happening so local diners, restaurants, and stores serve as props.

Sports Center Who watches the whole show?  Ten minutes of highlights here and there gives me my sports fix.

HBO Comedy shows (standup)  Wanda Sykes!  Louis Black.  Whoever else wanders in that turns out to be good.  George Carlin is still funny, what about 40 years after he started.

Surgery Saved My Life  A new short run show (six episodes).  I've seen the first two shows.  In episode one a doctor took this 15 year old African kid whose spine had about 4 huge hairpin curves like over 100 degrees) and straightened the kid up.  Amazing.  Like a 10 hour surgery.  
Show 2 featured an American Indian kid who was having three grand mal epileptic seizures a day (40 minutes per) and was reduced to a zombie.  The doctor literally opened the kids brain and inserted this plastic sheet with electrodes in it so he could locate the problem and then removed it.  Hmm.  Do you know where the problem is in the Wite House?  Don't need surgery to find it.

by David Kowalski 2006-12-15 11:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Current shows:

Scrubs (my #1), Earl, Family Guy and American Dad.  Lost, Numbers.  Survivor.  Not sure if I will watch 24 anymore, I am getting a little tired of that show.

On DVD I have been hooked on HBO shows: Sopranos (picked up HBO just for the last season) and now Deadwood and Six Feet Under.  Deadwood has just been fantastic, I just started that one about a month ago and am eagerly awaiting the release of Season 3.  Just getting started on Six Feet Under, but I am impressed.

I also watch Frasier repeats regularly and Futurama at times.  I am really looking forward to new episodes of Futurama on Comedy Central next year.  Also the last episodes of the Sopranos (have to get HBO again...so worth it).

by phishwu 2006-12-15 11:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread
Our whole family loves "The Office", even though I'm the only one that actually works in an office, which  is an excellent indication of the quality of its writing and acting.  I also love watching "My Name is Earl". Even though the acting and writing is not of the same quality, the sweetness of the storylines  and characters, and the uniqueness of its "underclass" setting make up for it.  "30 Rock" also has funny writing and great acting, which makes up for characters that are all overpaid entertainment industry people. I've found that "Studio 60" doesn't  balance out that way, perhaps because the characters   don't disparage themselves like in 30 Rock, but instead feel like they're doing something noble, like they're feeding refugees instead of selling toothpaste. I agree with the earlier poster that "How I Met Your Mother" is the funniest "traditional" sitcom still on.  
"Heroes" is definately interesting-well acted and directed, but I'm starting to feel like too little actually happens each episode- it is too broken up.  "Law and Order-Criminal Intent" is the only drama I have always consistantly watched- no preaching, heroics, lectures or preening, just good stories and acting.  
I will not watch TV news- I did an internship at a local TV station and saw the sausage made.  It's NPR and the internet for me.  
by alameda 2006-12-15 12:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I think Top Chef on Bravo is the only show I'm making a point of watching, though when So You Think You Can Dance is on, I watch that.  

I float around the HGTV offerings and Food Network "Challenges."  

Flip from CNN to MSNBC to FOX to Headline News and REALLY wish I could figure out how to NOT hear about kids dying.  

Daily Show and Colbert.  (And how can I not have Girls Gone Wild commercials on Comedy Central when my kids are watching tv, which on the westcoast means a later eastcoast broadcast?)


Some Dr. Who, but its bedtime for kids.

Used to love ensemble sit-coms.  My favorite Star Trek was Deep Space Nine.  The Buffy musical episode was amazing.    

by catherineD 2006-12-15 12:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I don't watch the TV machine. Don't pay for cable. I play videos. I wait for the end of the season for House, M.D., for example, then rent it. For the Golden Globes, I just joined Netflicks and ordered all the past seasons for the GG nominees, including miniseries, like Elizabeth I. I want to see Rock - love Alec Baldwin - so I'll make the effort to watch one program at least on a friend's TV. All my news I find here. I don't buy local papers anymore - let them rot in hell.

by mrobinsong 2006-12-15 12:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Dont watch TV programming. I do have a film collection, and I enjoy it greatly, have a couple hundred probably.

by Nezua Limon Xoloquinta Jonez 2006-12-15 12:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Okay, I forgot to support Project Runway and 4400.

Plus, another plug for Avatar, which I see you've all missed.  I'm not really a cartoon person, but Avatar is really good.  It combines the best of American and anime.

by catherineD 2006-12-15 12:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

One show that I have not seen on anyone's list that I happen to enjoy is Jericho. Another one of my long-running favorites is King of Queens.

Speaking of 30 Rock, I now wish there really was a "Black Frasier." That scene had me laughing really hard this week.

by lalawguy 2006-12-15 02:22PM | 0 recs
Some over-rated shows listed above

I just have to say that "The Office" is now, in its current form anyway, over-rated. It was somewhat groundbreaking in its style and its content was great, until the Jim & Pam relationship narrative got out of control. NBC already used that formula: it was called "Ed". Now, like "Ed", since Pam turned down Jim, Jim is now with someone else, and Pam wants him back, but of course Jim really wants Pam, but can they ever get together? Oh, the drama.

"The Office" wastes much of its time on this hackneyed and not-at-all-funny plotline. Hey, here's a suggestion, use Dwight more, as well as some of the other, funny minor characters. If they did, "The Office" would be worth its high rating. As it is now, "The Office" is only "above average" IMO.

Also, "Gilmore Girls". hoose was absolutely correct in that this show has "jumped the shark." Even my 12-year-old daughter who loved this show for many years (and I liked it too) has given up on it and will no longer watch it, much less videotape every episode and buy the DVDs. Yeah, "GG" blew it when they fumbled the Lorelei-Luke relationship (and introduced Luke's daughter -- WTF?). "Gilmore Girls" used to be a great show, but I don't even think Lauren Graham or Alexis Bledel try in their acting efforts anymore (see Jason Alexander in last season of "Seinfeld" on the "effort question".

by OH Mark 2006-12-15 02:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

For me, the best show on TV is MythBusters. Watching TV is kind of a guilty pleasure, so I love it when you feel like you're learning at least a little, which is why I love Discovery, National Geographic, and Food Network (love Alton Brown). And MythBusters is the greatest - science in an accessible way, tons of 'wow' moments, and those guys are absolutely hilarious.

I also try not to miss either the Daily Show or the Colbert Report, and I do like Real Time, even if the token Repub each episode invariably pissed the hell out of me.

As far as pure entertainment goes, I love Lost, Gilmore Girls, House, and How I Met Your Mother. And I love Sorkin too much to miss Studio 60; it's okay, but unfortunately, I don't think anything will match WW.

by Sustainability 2006-12-15 02:34PM | 0 recs
Scrubs = The Monkeys

The other day I was describing the old show, "The Monkeys," to my kids. I said it was in the style of "Scrubs," with basically every aside, fantasy or weird little turn, shown for a few seconds -- then back to the main story.

I'm 41 and loved "The Monkeys" when I was a little kid. In addition to a great kids' show, now having seen "Scrubs" cash in on the same presentation style, I also think it was 35 years ahead of its time.

BTW, I think that "Scrubs" was very good and interesting in its first two or three seasons, but by now, it's hardly innovative anymore, and most if not all of the good storylines have likely been covered.

by OH Mark 2006-12-15 02:35PM | 0 recs
What I watch and like

I've ripped a few shows, and defended none so far, except maybe "The Monkeys" (which I would love to see again, BTW) so here are my favorites, so others (such as fans of "The Office", "Gilmore Girls" and "Scrubs") can criticize them:

News or "fake news" -
The News Hour
Countdown with Keith Olbermann
The Daily Show
The Colbert Report

HBO series -
Curb Your Enthusiasm
The Sopranos (tho' last season sucked)
Big Love (a very original show IMO)

Sports -
College basketball (but never pro)
Pro football (but rarely college)
Baseball (a St. Louis Cardinals fan in Ohio)
Golf (I play, so I watch)

But the best TV I watched this year was on election night, when I stayed up till 3 am Eastern, waiting to see if Tester would hang on and flip the Senate. Man, that was exciting, watching Webb come back and take down Macaca; wondering WTF was wrong while McCaskill trailed Talent for so long, only to surge ahead when the Kansas City vote came in; and of course Tester holding off Burns.

That was the best TV I have watched in a long time, and probably will be for the next 2 years. Till November, 2008 then...

by OH Mark 2006-12-15 02:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Eureka is my favorite new-ish show, bar none.  It's on break right now, but the first 12 episodes were amazing.

Also, watching Stargate: Atlantis (which is airing its second half-season in Canada right now, though it doesn't start up with new episodes until April on SciFi).

Cartoon-wise, I'm a real big fan of The Life And Times of Juniper Lee, on the Cartoon Network.  It's done by Judd Winnick, who, if you read comics, you know is awesome (among other things, he's done Outsiders, Batman, Green Arrow and Barry Ween: Boy Genius).

Oh, and TDS/TCR.  And Star Trek: The Next Generation, which is on, like, 5 hours a day, of which I inevitably catch only half an hour if at all.  But that still rocks.

by notapipe 2006-12-15 02:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Despite all the Battlestar Love.  There will always be a place in my heart and TV for TNG.  In a wasteland of Miami Vice's and Charles in Charge in really stood out as quality, thought-provoking TV.

by bhirsh26 2006-12-15 03:46PM | 0 recs
Sleeper Cell

Everyone here should watch Sleeper Cell.  It makes "24" look like a freeper cartoon.

Make that: "It confirms that '24' is a freeper cartoon".

BTW, Here's the start of a '24' drinking game:

  • Drink if they show Fox News
  • Drink if a right-wing think tank is mentioned, like the Heritage Foundation
  • Drink if Jack Bauer tortures someone

Michael Ealy and Oded Fehr both deserve every accolade they get.  It would be hysterical to have a Darwyn/Bauer crossover:  Bauer would prattle on to Darwyn at a mile a minute about how they needed to do some ridiculous thing, and Darwyn would just listen, look at Bauer with those pale blue eyes, and quietly say: "Here's what we're actually going to do...".

Even the smaller roles are cast extremely well.  Darwyn's new handler is great as the smug FBI asshole (who got the job through nepotism, a nice touch), who doesn't know his ass from his elbow, but gets to call the shots.  One of the terrorists is Iraqi by way of England, and has acquired the accent and temperment of a hooligan.  There's a great monologue about how he got roughed up back in England for being a "Paki", and just as you start feeling a little sorry for him, he talks about how he got one of them down, and thought about how best to make him suffer, eventually deciding to kick him in the mouth because "teef don' grow back".

Like said, Sleeper Cell.  Tonight, tomorrow and Sunday are the last 3 episodes, so catch it if you can.

by NY Expat 2006-12-15 03:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Wow, Chris is like my TV watching soul-mate! I too love 30 rock ( and am also pissed Chapelle wigged out), and very little else on TV, TV is mostly bland, stupid, boring, and similar.

And yes, the TV news is getting worse and worse.

by johnnyr 2006-12-15 04:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

I haven't watched a TV show since '86, except for binges of news watching during Iraq invasion I, and 9/11/01, as well as a few NCAA basketball games my friend was playing in.  And yes, I'm very smug about it.

Not coincidentally, the revolution in computing over the past 20 years that has kept me pretty well occupied, and the allure of the monitor with a keyboard has been greater than the remote.

Nowadays, it's mostly Wikipedia surfing that I do when I'm feeling brainless.  There's some amazing information in there now, some of it useful, and you can bridge to your heart's content.

by aip 2006-12-15 09:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Shows I watch routinely in no particular order (some are now off season, sadly):

The Daily Show
Colbert Report
Battlestar Galactica
Practically anything on the History Channel
Practically anything on the Science Channel
Real Time with Bill Maher
Mythbusters, if I catch it right (I sometimes forget it)
Iniside the Actor's Studio (like Mythbusters, if I remember it)
And recently I got into Scrubs.

I'm also a voracious downloader of the British show QI. As well, I'll download any episode of Blackadder, A Bit of Fry and Laurie, Jeeves and Wooster, and Mystery Science Theatre 3000.

I've also got tenatively into The West Wing, but that was only one episode and I keep forgetting to watch more of it. Another show along the same lines as that is Rome; the few episodes I saw were great, but then I lost track of it.

by Callandor 2006-12-16 01:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Am I the only Spongebob aficianado here? Ok, mostly I'm not watching by choice but it still rocks. Also:

Austin City Limits
South Park
Family Guy
Daily Show
The Wire (heartbroken about you know who dying)
The Mets
The various science, history channels are excellent fallback surfing options

by Lawnguylander 2006-12-16 04:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Random TV Thread

Whatever Aaron Sorkin started with the seven season run of The West Wing is better than anything else I've ever seen on TV, and I started watching TV long before "Leave it to..Mr. Ed" or whatever that show was called. "In Excelsis Deo" (West Wing, season 1) is one of my favorite Christmas shows.

by johnbrosnan 2006-12-16 07:54AM | 0 recs


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