I feel like I'm still easing back into this blogging business -- coming up with cogent analysis of last week's TV fare was often like pulling teeth. I'm hoping things go more smoothly this week, as the Fall season starts in earnest; in the meantime, take a gander at my thought on last week.
MONDAY, SEPT. 13
As of last week, there was still nothing new playing on Monday nights; that will change drastically tonight.
Parenthood (NBC, 9:00): The season premiere kept this show going firmly in the "I like this show, but . . ." mode that typified its first season. I like the continuing story of dealing with an autistic son, and I like the new dynamic between the grandparents, and I really liked the son-in-law finally standing up for himself -- but I disliked most every other plot point, especially Adam's treatment of his sister. Honestly, playing the "When did I ever ask for anything but thanks?" card on her is definitely in the running for "Jerk of the Year" moments.
Sons of Anarchy (FX, 9:00): With my 2nd favorite character gone -- R.I.P. Half Sack -- and Jax falling down the rabbit hole of revenge, right now I am only really enjoying the show when it's focusing on Gemma and Tig. I am looking forward to the upcoming guest-appearance by Stephen King, however.
WEDNESDAY, SEPT 15
The Ultimate Figther: GSP vs Koscheck (Spike, 9:00): If I had been harboring any fears that this new season might temper my dislike of Koscheck by humanizing him -- much like Tito's first tenure as coach did for him -- the season premiere and its upcoming episode teaser seem to have laid them to rest. Honestly, this is going to be a hard season to make it through, especially if Koscheck's team starts winning -- don't know if I can handle an even cockier Koscheck.
Survivor (CBS, 7:00): The first post-Russel Brand season of Survivor got off to a slow start for me; the inclusion of former NFL coach Jimmy Johnson is an interesting gimmick, but I have a feeling that the "old vs. young" segregation will lead to some more lop-sided victories, which is seldom entertaining for me.
Top Chef: Washington D.C. (Bravo, 9:00): Can't say I was super-excited to see Kevin emerge as the winner; didn't have anything against him, but it's always odd when someone who never won a single challenge winds up winning the whole thing.
Top Chef: Just Desserts (Bravo, 10:00): I'll say one thing about this Top Chef spin-off: the odds of the dishes prepared here inspiring food cravings in me each week will probably be much higher than on the parent program.
Terriers (FX, 9:00): Two episodes in, and I'm hooked. Sadly, it sounds like its ratings have been dismal so far -- hoping FX sticks by it and allows it to find an audience.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 16
Nikita (CW, 8:00): I'm afraid this looks like it might be my first casualty of the season. Not because I didn't like it -- the 2nd episode did a good job of maintaining the momentum of the premiere -- but because starting next week it will be up against Fringe and Grey's Anatomy, and my DVR can only record so many shows at once. And while I can most likely catch each of those other series online later, I don't know that I'm invested enough in Nikita for it to be worth the hassle.
The Apprentice (NBC, 8:00): I haven't watched The Donald's reality series for several seasons, but I have to admit that I was a sucker for the "all contestants are people affected by the recession" hook. Always interesting to watch the Alpha Males butting heads in the early days, but right now it's hard to say if there are any personalities engaging enough to keep me watching all season.
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (FX, 9:00): For a series where the main characters' actions rarely have any lasting consequences for themselves, I was surprised when Dennis's impromptu marriage wasn't nullified by the end of the episode; wondering how long his union to Dead Tooth will last.
The League (FX, 9:30): I was hoping that the "wife wants her own fantasy team" would turn out a bit differently -- I think the trash-talking between the couple would have been entertaining.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 17
Batman: The Brave and the Bold (Cartoon Network, 6:00): I often wonder how enjoyable this show is for the casual Batman fan, since so much of my enjoyment is tied up in seeing all of these great lesser-known characters like Ultra the Multi-Alien and B'wana Beast come to life
Sym-Bionic Titan (Cartoon Network, 7:00): New animated series from Gendy Tartakovsky which focuses on a group of teenage alien refuges who have traveled to Earth to hide. Character design owes a lot to anime, but it also still holds Tartakovsky's stamp. I enjoyed the first episode, and am curious to see if it will follow the same formula each week or mix things up.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 19
Rubicon (AMC, 8:00): I have to admit it took several episodes for this show to grow on me; as many critics have remarked its pace is glacial at times, but patience and perseverance have paid off. Sure, the overall conspiracy plot is still unraveling slowly, but the character bits along the way are making it a worthwhile ride. I'm not sure I like the turn with Will and his neighbor, but I'm willing to wait and see where it leads.
Mad Men (AMC, 9:00): So many great lines and moments in this episode, from Mrs. Blankenship's observation about the two types of people in advertising to the gathering of all the women in Don's life to Sally's breakfast mistake, but all paled in comparison to the visual gag of the removal of Mrs. Blankenship and her blotter.
Venture Bros. (Cartoon Network, 10:30): I love that they show Hank as being semi-sorta-capable-kinda in his own delusional way. I do wish that I'd re-watched the 1st half of the season, as I had forgotten some of the details of Phantom Limb's last appearance.