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Spoiler Alert Thursday

TV remains dismal, on the whole:

  • “Caprica.” Production turns from the internet interface to cylons–which are clearly to be slaves and slaves, especially enslaved robots, will always revolt. And Joseph Adama chickened out on the hit, which his brother made fun of him for. Astute viewers will note that Sam Adama was the cop who harassed Cameron when Sarah Connor went to pick up the fake IDs.
  • “The Big Bang Theory,” if it wasn’t apparent when Leonard and Penny got together has completely played itself out. Raj is quickly turning into Fez; apparently this is the only character brown people can play in American sitcoms.
  • “Spartacus” was somewhat surprising and, at the level of plot, the most satisfying episode of the season. Spartacus has begun to think about escape and Batiatus is revealed as completely and utterly ruthless (slaughtering Ovidius and his family; killing Barca even though he remained loyal; and, now, having Sura, Spartacus’s wife killed). Meanwhile, Lucretia seems at once to be inspired by and afraid of her husband’s ruthlessness and Doctore shows the capacity for mild disobedience.
  • “Law & Order” was, basically, a wasted two hours.
  • “NCIS” was not especially exciting.
  • “Parenthood” was a terrible, terrible show, but we needed something between other shows. Peter Krause has not aged well (not that he was an attractive man in “Six Feet Under,” but still) and Lorelai Gilmore really only has one character.
  • “Law & Order: SVU” was also not very good. Mischa Barton was convincing as a street hooker. Lee Tergesen was creepy. I missed the first episode with Coco from “Flight of the Conchords” playing a lesbian.

March 4, 2010 - Posted by | Spoiler Alert Thursdays


  1. I think last week there was literally nothing on — but I did catch up on “Life and Times of Tim” and “The Ricky Gervais Show,” the latter of which really does have redeeming moments even though the premise is so self-indulgent.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | March 4, 2010

  2. Isn’t “The Ricky Gervais Show” not televisual?

    Comment by ben | March 4, 2010

  3. The choice to animate the podcasts is, I must say, a very peculiar choice. Quite frankly, it seems a little lazy.

    Comment by Brad Johnson | March 4, 2010

  4. Ben, They have created an animated series based on the podcasts, presently airing on HBO.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | March 4, 2010

  5. and Lorelai Gilmore really only has one character

    Is it the one from Bad Santa?

    Comment by K-sky | March 4, 2010

  6. I haven’t watched any television in ages, as both Glee and Mad Men have been on recess. I think I need a new program.

    Webloggians, what should I watch? Your recommendations welcome. I prefer serial-format, character-driven, 45-minute programs, where at least half the main characters are women. Please, no sitcoms, cartoons or procedurals.

    It’s a sad life that’s got no television in it.

    Comment by jms | March 4, 2010

  7. Friday Night Lights.

    Not quite 1/2 women, but great female characters.

    And have you watched Buffy all the way through? (Caveat — I skipped the first season and haven’t been convinced that that was a mistake.)

    Comment by K-sky | March 4, 2010

  8. This week’s “Community” was dumb as hell. At least they didn’t try to advance the supposed sexual tension between Jeff and Britta, though.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | March 4, 2010

  9. I feel as if Community’s been much weaker after Christmas. I’m looking forward to the return of Glee, and I’d also suggest checking out Modern Family.

    Comment by Jeremy | March 4, 2010

  10. With regards to the Ricky Gervais Show, are they actually including new material? The podcasts were hilarious, but if they don’t record anything new then it’s just pathetic.

    Comment by Jeremy | March 4, 2010

  11. And have you watched Buffy all the way through?

    K-sky, it’s like you don’t know me at all.

    (My Buffy complete box set is still packed up in a box somewhere — maybe I should find it and rewatch it. It has been a while.)

    Comment by jms | March 4, 2010

  12. The Girlfriend is watching Buffy currently, or was before her power was brutally cut off.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | March 5, 2010

  13. I watched a season of Buffy once, back when I was living on a friend’s couch in their TV room and more or less had to watch whatever they were watching. I have never understood the appeal of that show. The characters are obnoxious, the dialogue is grating, the plot is threadbare-to-nonexistent.

    Comment by stras | March 5, 2010

  14. I feel as if Community’s been much weaker after Christmas.

    Having Joel McHale’s character hook up with the hot teacher was a terrible mistake. The most successful routes to comedy are misery, humiliation and cruelty; I’m not interested in seeing these people be smugly satisfied with their lot in life, I want to watch them be eternally frustrated. The Jeff character is particularly well-designed for this, because he has not lived in loserdom all his life as the rest of the cast has, but has fallen into loserdom from a once-lucrative professional career, and should be the most desperate to rise above his newfound social status (and thus the most consistently frustrated and miserable when those attempts inevitably fail).

    The early episodes of the show understood this, but now that he’s been allowed to succeed to some measure within his new social environment (by having sex with an attractive woman), he’s little more than a generic cool guy without any of the great hateful baggage that made him interesting to watch. I guess the driving force of the show is now supposed to be Jeff-and-Britta, which is just pathetic.

    Comment by stras | March 5, 2010

  15. “The Comedian” turned out to be my favorite “John Schlesinger film” ever, partly because it’s “John Schlesinger live television.”

    Comment by Ray Davis | March 5, 2010

  16. The only difference between Lorelai Gilmore of “Bad Santa” and Lorelai Gilmore of “Gilmore Girls” is that the former says, “fuck me Santa, fuck me Santa, fuck me Santa.” I doubt such colourful language would make it past the network prime time censors, unfortunately.

    Comment by Craig | March 5, 2010

  17. I agree on the wrong turn on Community — Jeff being satisfied with his lot in life should’ve been reserved for the decadent 8th season or something like that. Transplanting him from worldly success to community college was the only thing keeping the show from being another high school sitcom, except with slightly greater variety in age among the characters.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | March 6, 2010

  18. I agree that the whole Jeff/Britta romance needs to die. I feel as if they keep trying to sell it to us, but I have a really difficult time believing in it. For instance, in the Valentine’s day episode Britta comes to the dance really dressed up and were supposed to assume Jeff finds her really attractive. The problem is she looked like a harlot. The red lipstick reminded me of a really scary clown. They should drop that all together and focus more on the possible romance between Troy/Annie. Or maybe if they’re feeling really bold/desperate Troy/Abed.

    Comment by Jeremy | March 6, 2010

  19. s/Schlesinger/Frankenheimer

    Mickey Rooney would’ve been great as “Bad Santa.”

    Comment by Ray Davis | March 6, 2010

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