Stay Tuned
Reviews, previews and much more on "The Real Housewives," "How I Met Your Mother," "NCIS" and many more of your favorite shows. This is the place to talk about all of the things that make us "Stay Tuned"…

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

"Surburgatory" Review: Make a Trip to the Suburbs

I have to admit I snickered considerably when I saw the premise of the new ABC sitcom, “Suburgatory”: A single dad moves his teenage daughter from New York City to the suburbs.

But when I watched the premiere, the snickers turned into full-on laughs. But that’s a good thing. And “Suburgatory” is a surprisingly good show, which I ranked as #4 in my best of the fall list…

Jeremy Sisto is the dad, George, and Jane Levy is Tessa, his daughter. Tessa really didn’t want to move, but George is adamant that they need the move in order to protect her. But they both might need protection from what the suburbs have to offer. Helping Tessa navigate the ‘burbs (while she tries to snag George for herself) is Dallas (Cheryl Hines), who has a teenager of her own. In the premiere, Tessa learns about shopping and how mini-skirts can never be too mini.

The allure of this show is the sarcastic way it illuminates the ridiculous but true behavior of certain people. Also in the premiere, George visits a country club and witnesses a woman walking straight into the swimming pool because she’s too busy texting. “That happens all the time,” a member tells George.

Levy is fantastic as the snarky, but genuine Tessa. And even though he’s been playing a lot of brooding characters lately, Sisto is right at home in a sitcom playing the straight man to everyone else’s punchlines. And Hines is hysterical as the over-the-top-but-doesn’t-know-it Dallas.

I hate to say it, but ABC has done a really good thing by putting this one in between “The Middle” and “Modern Family.” It’s the perfect place and it forms a pretty solid comedy block.

And you know how much I hate when ABC succeeds…

“Suburgatory” premieres tonight (Wednesday, September 28th) at 8:30 p.m. on ABC…

Photo Credit: Karen Neal/ABC

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Pick of the Week: A Returning Fave Gets Set to Break Out

There are two new shows premiering this week that I really like—“Hart of Dixie” and “Suburgatory.” But for my pick, I want to put the spotlight on a returning favorite that I think is poised for a real breakout season…

My Pick of the Week is the season premiere of “Mike and Molly.”

Last year, this show got very little love from the critics, which I never understood. I named it the third best new show of the fall season last year and probably should have ranked it higher. Yes, I had concerns that the show would take fat jokes too far, but I never felt that happened.

Now the show has the good fortune of having one of the hottest actresses in the business right now as its female lead—the fantastic, Emmy Award-winning Melissa McCarthy. So I think it’s going to be seeing a lot more love this season.

The question is whether the show can rise to the challenge and deliver funny episodes week in and week out. I thought the show lost a little steam toward the end of its first season, but now that Mike (Billy Gardell) and Molly are engaged, I think the show has a lot of possibilities. And one of those is that the show could possibly overtake “Two and a Half Men” as TV’s #1 comedy…

Oh yeah, I went there…

“Mike and Molly” premieres Monday, September 26th at 9:30 p.m. on CBS…

Photo Credit:Sonja Flemming/CBS

This Week's Premiere Schedule

Here are the premieres scheduled for this week, as the new fall TV schedules start to take shape.

New shows are marked with (*)…

Monday, September 26th

Gossip Girl—8 PM—The CW

*Terra Nova—8 PM (2 hrs.)—FOX

*Hart of Dixie—9 PM—The CW

Mike & Molly—9:30 PM—CBS

Wednesday, September 28th

*Suburgatory—8:30 PM—ABC

Happy Endings—9:31 PM—ABC

Thursday, September 29th

Private Practice—10 PM—ABC

*How to Be a Gentleman—8:31 PM—CBS

Sunday, October 2nd

America’s Funniest Home Videos—7 PM—ABC

Photo Credit: Sonja Flemming/CBS

"Hart of Dixie" Review: Welcome Back, Rachel Bilson!

There are very few shows that I talk as nostalgically about as my beloved “The O.C.”

So, the thought of Rachel Bilson, who played Summer, reuniting with “O.C.” creator and executive producer Josh Schwartz totally had me psyched. And after seeing the premiere of “Hart of Dixie,” I’m still psyched. It may not be to the level of “The O.C.” but it does have some serious potential. And that’s good enough for me…

Bilson is Zoe Hart, an ambitious NYC doctor whose rise to the top is stopped because of her lack of bedside manner. To get back on track, she moves to Bluebell, Alabama, to accept the job offer a kindly older gentleman has been offering her for the past four years. But when she arrives, she discovers a whole new world she’s not quite prepared for.

The show wisely doesn’t traffic in small-town Southern stereotypes. Instead, Zoe is more of the stereotype as the ambitious New Yorker who can’t survive without her lattes and cabs. She becomes friends with Bluebell mayor, Lavon (Cress Williams) and attracts the attention of local hottie lawyer George (Scott Porter), but she quickly runs afoul of Southern belle Lemon (Jaime King) and her father Brick (Tim Matheson), with whom Zoe shares her Bluebell practice. Lemon does come off a little cookie cutter, but the hour hints that there is much more to her than meets the eye…

There are several twists in the premiere that many other sites, including The CW’s own press site, have given away. But I’m not going to risk ruining things for you. However, I don’t think I’m giving anything away by saying that as the hour progresses, Zoe does start to find her bedside manner after all and the cynical New Yorker starts to fade away to reveal a more sensitive, caring person. Fortunately, Zoe is played by Bilson, who does witchy to caring better than most.

This show falls squarely on Bilson’s shoulders and she is more than capable of carrying it. I don’t think I realized just how much TV has missed her until I watched this. I’m hoping that Schwartz and his cohorts will take as good of care of her as they did when she was on “The O.C.” You know, until that hideous second season…

If you’re looking for charming, romantic, interesting drama with just a dab of real emotion, I think this is the one for you. But I’m not afraid to admit I could be a little overly influenced by a heavy dose of nostalgia…

“We’ve been on the run, looking out for fun…” Okay, I’m done now…

“Hart of Dixie” premieres Monday, September 26th at 9 p.m. on The CW…

Photo Credit: Michael Tackett/The CW

"Terra Nova" Review: More Dinosaurs, Less Whining

I already gave my impression of “Terra Nova” in my column, but basically it boils down to this:

Dinosaurs eating people, good. Teenager whining about his absent father, bad.

“Terra Nova” does look amazing, no doubt about it. But I think I had a hard time moving past the fact that the first 20 minutes—though interesting—are pretty much pointless. It’s those last 20 minutes that really make the difference and give me hope that this one will get much better as it goes along—especially if there’s less whining.

The “Terra Nova” two-hour premiere airs Monday, September 26th at 8 p.m. on FOX…

Photo Credit:Brook Rushton/FOX

"Pan Am" Review: Am I Just Too Picky?

I’m starting to think I’m just really picky about my TV shows. Because I was mostly unimpressed with the shows other critics tagged as the best of the fall.

Take “Pan Am,” which premieres tonight on ABC. The cast is solid and it looks fantastic thanks to the great Thomas Schlamme’s (“The West Wing”) direction. And the storylines make sense for the most part Yet, I didn’t like it.

See what I mean about picky?…

The show revolves around four Pan Am stewardesses and their lives in the Pan Am heyday of the 60s. Laura (Margot Robbie) is the newbie who has accidentally become the face of Pan Am, thanks to “Life” magazine. Kate (Kelli Garner) is her jealous sister, who is angry that Laura has infringed on her Pan Am life. Maggie (Christina Ricci) is the rebel and Colette (Karine Vanasse) is the flirt, who often flirts with the wrong guy.

Joining them on their adventures are hotshot pilot Dean (Mike Vogel) and his co-pilot, Ted (Michael Mosley). Dean is secretly dating fellow stewardess Bridget (Annabelle Wallis), who is mysteriously absent from most of the premiere.

The premiere serves mostly as a set-up as we learn more about each of the character’s lives. Because you can’t unfold a lot of drama within the confines of a plane, we get flashbacks to one of Colette’s trysts, Laura’s wedding day and several scenes that illuminate the doozy of a secret Kate is hiding. Plus, we learn more about Bridget and Dean’s relationship and the mystery behind her absence from the flight crew.

The premise of the show is a good one and it’s interesting to see the rigorous demands Pan Am puts on the stewardesses. Plus, the possibilities for good soapy drama are endless. It’s when the show tries to make itself more than what it is that it loses me.

Apparently, a 60s soap opera is not enough for the show and it tries to add international espionage to the mix. And although there is some precedent that this kind of thing actually happened aboard Pan Am flights, I find it a little hard to buy and I think it brings the whole show down.

But as I said, I’m picky. Feel free to disagree with me. Most people already have…

“Pan Am” premieres tonight (Sunday) at 10 p.m. on ABC…

Photo Credit: Bob D'Amico/ABC

Thursday, September 22, 2011

"Prime Suspect" Review: Is Jane Timoney Too Tough?

As any husband or boyfriend can tell you, there is a fine line between a woman being tough and being witchy.

To borrow a phrase from “Friends,” “Prime Suspect” goes so far past the line, it can’t even see the line. The line is a dot to them…

Maria Bello is Jane Timoney, a tough NYC homicide detective trying to navigate the male-dominated police world. She’s a great investigator, but she doesn’t always win friends with the way she closes cases. Plus, the other detectives think she got her job because she slept with a supervisor.

In the premiere, Jane gets passed over as the primary for a high profile case. But when something unexpected happens, she may get another chance to prove to everyone what she can do.

I never saw the original British series starring Helen Mirren, so I have nothing to compare it to, but this one just doesn’t work for me. The case in the premiere is solid. It’s the characters that bother me.

Like I said, Jane seems much more witchy than she does tough. That becomes especially apparent when she takes a little too much advantage of a tragic situation. So she’s a little tough to like. And her fellow detectives are such cartoons, it’s a little embarrassing. Plus, their NYC accents are so thick, you almost need subtitles.

Bello is fantastic and the role is a great one for her. But she’s going to need a little more to work with if this one’s going to succeed…

“Prime Suspect” premieres tonight (September 22nd) at 10 p.m. on NBC…

Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/NBC

"Whitney" Review: As Funny As the Promos?

When the commercials first started airing for the new fall shows, the one that first caught my eye was NBC’s “Whitney.” The jokes they showed in the promos were funny.

And then I watched it and found out the jokes they showed in the promos were funny…

The show stars comedian Whitney Cummings as Whitney and Chris D’Elia as Alex. The two are happily unmarried, which seems to confuse their friends who think they should be married.

In the premiere, the two attend a friend’s wedding and Whitney gets some ideas about how to spice up their relationship that go horribly wrong…

I would define “Whitney” as a show on the verge. It’s on the verge of being something really funny and entertaining. But it’s also on the verge of being something really bad. Only time will tell which way it goes.

I think the biggest problem is Whitney herself. Like a lot of stand-up comics that move to TV, she’s not the strongest actress. And since the show revolves around her, that’s a problem. Plus, the storyline is incredibly weak and seems like it’s just something to go in between Whitney’s one-liners.

Since Whitney is also behind “2 Broke Girls,” I have to wonder if maybe she’s just better suited for behind the scenes. Or maybe she just needs to grow into it.

I’m not sure if I’ll stick around to find out…

“Whitney” premieres tonight (September 22nd) at 9:30 p.m. on NBC…

Photo Credit: Jordin Althaus/NBC

It's Official: Kiefer is Returning to FOX!

It’s official. Kiefer Sutherland is returning to FOX…

FOX just announced that it has ordered 13 episodes of “Touch.” The show will premiere in the spring.

According to the official press release, “Touch” is a drama about Martin (Kiefer), a widower and single father who is having trouble connecting with his mute 11-year-old son, Jake (David Mazouz). But things soon change when Martin discovers that Jake has the ability to “see things that no one else can and the patterns that connect seemingly unrelated events.”

The drama was created by Tim Kring (“Heroes”) and also stars Danny Glover.

Obviously, I’m excited to see this. But Kring’s involvement still makes me a little nervous. Remember what happened to “Heroes”…

Photo Credit: Lorenzo Agius

"Person of Interest": The Best New Show of the Fall?

Two weeks ago, I reviewed it in my column and in last week’s column, I named it the best new show of the fall.

Tonight, you can see for yourself if I’m right…

“Person of Interest” premieres tonight at 9 on CBS. If not for the whole “Two and a Half Men” thing, I would have made it my Pick of the Week.

Yeah, it’s that good. But then, I’m pretty convinced I would watch Michael Emerson read the phonebook…

Be sure and let me know what you think…

Photo Credit: Jeffrey R. Staab/CBS

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"Charlie's Angels" Review: A Bad Acting Class Brought to TV

Hollywood’s constant attempts at reboots can get a little annoying. But I was willing to give ABC the benefit of the doubt thinking that maybe “Charlie’s Angels” was an idea whose time had come again.

And it may still be, but not in the form of the mess set to debut tomorrow night…

You know the story. The mysterious Charlie (who only communicates through ever present speaker phones) brings together three women to help bring down the bad guys. The difference is that these women weren’t stellar cadets at the police academy. They all committed crimes and have now been given a second chance by Charlie. There’s Abby (Rachael Taylor), Kate (Annie Ilonzeh) and Eve (Minka Kelly), who joins the angels in the premiere. They’re assisted by Bosley (Ramon Rodriguez), who in this version is a hot young guy who has a way with the ladies.

In the premiere, the angels start out with a different line-up. But when one of them dies, Abby and Kate, the remaining angels, set out to find her killer and end up teaming with Eve along the way.

The show looks so pretty at the start as the angels pull off their latest caper. But then the show attempts a storyline and the whole thing falls apart. Eve’s backstory comes out of nowhere and her connection to the case the angels were working at the beginning of the show doesn’t quite work. And the corny writing features a bunch of stilted lines like, “We’re angels. We’re not saints” and “I never thought my heart could hurt this much.” I rolled my eyes so many times I gave myself a headache.

But the biggest problem with the show is the acting. It’s terrible. Everyone looks like they’re in a bad acting class. Even the fabulous Carlos Bernard, who plays the bad guy in the premiere, comes off like a terrible actor.

Now I see why Robert Wagner walked away from playing Charlie. He probably didn’t want anything to do with this mess…

Speaking of which, I presume the voice of Charlie I heard in the screener provided to the media is a temporary one since ABC has made no announcement as to who will provide the voice. Reports are that Victor Garber is in talks to do it. I love him, so I REALLY hope he runs the other way…

Seriously, this show is that bad. I’d like to say that it will teach Hollywood a lesson about reboots, but I think we all know that’s nowhere near true…

“Charlie’s Angels” premieres Thursday, September 22nd at 8 p.m. on ABC…

Photo Credit: Bob D'Amico/ABC

"The X Factor" Review: Will It Live Up to the Hype?

So tonight’s the night. Simon Cowell returns to television in “The X Factor.” But will it live up to all of the hype?

After seeing chunks of tonight’s and tomorrow night’s two-hour episodes, I can say yes, it is. But there are some issues…

The #1 issue in the premiere is Cheryl Cole. To me, it’s pretty obvious why she was let go/walked away. She’s pretty stiff and reports that she was difficult to understand were correct. On day two of the Los Angeles auditions, they switched up the judging table and put Cheryl next to Simon. I’m guessing that was a move to try and loosen her up a little bit, but it didn’t work. From the moment, Nicole Scherzinger sits down, it’s a huge improvement. And I think Nicole is a much better as a judge than she would have been as a co-host. Steve Jones handles it fine all by himself…

The #2 issue is the audience. There are many times when it seems like someone is flashing them signs to get them to cheer at certain points. That gets a little annoying. But by the second city, they settle down considerably.

But at the heart of the show are the same components we love about talent competitions. It’s great to have Paula back where she should be—at a judging table with Simon. And L.A. Reid is a perfect foe for Simon as they find themselves on different sides on contestants more than once. When they get to the mentoring/coaching rounds and the judges compete against each other, they will be a lot of fun.

You’ll tear up more than once during this week’s episodes, as there are some great singers with great stories. And there are some bad singers too that will make your skin crawl. In fact, one nearly makes Paula throw up…

In all honesty, at this stage, there are very few differences between “Factor” and “American Idol.” But the changes will become more evident as the show continues. And I think there’s a chance that Simon is right and this show could very well blow “Idol” right out of the water.

Welcome back, Simon, we’ve missed you…

Photo Credit: Ray Mickshaw/FOX

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"Men" Does Huge Numbers

The numbers are in and they are huge…

“Two and a Half Men” raked in 27.7 million viewers last night, the highest rating in the show’s history.

The question, of course, is whether they will be able to sustain that momentum next week. My guess is no.

I’ve heard some people saying today that the show is all about Charlie Sheen and without him it just doesn’t work. I would argue that the show was not all about Sheen, but was instead about the chemistry between Sheen and Cryer. It’s the absence of that I miss. They had chemistry instantly. It’s pretty clear Cryer and Ashton Kutcher will have to work at it.

What did you think? Feel free to share your opinions here or on Facebook or on Twitter…

Monday, September 19, 2011

"New Girl" Review: Totally "Adorkable"

The promos for “New Girl” have been calling it “adorkable.” And in all honesty, I couldn’t think of any better word to describe it myself…

Zooey Deschanel is Jess. She’s adorable, but a total dork. She makes up theme songs for herself, which she can spontaneously burst into at any time. And when she breaks up with her boyfriend, all she wants to do is watch “Dirty Dancing” over and over.

That’s the hot mess the three guys Jess moves in with are forced to deal with. And to stop the constant playing of “Dancing,” they decide to help Jess get back into the dating game. But not surprisingly, they have to help her get past her dorkiness first. And in doing so, they might discover they actually like her…

I hate to keep using the word adorable, but I have no choice. There’s no other word to describe both Deschanel and Jess. The humor is smart and the story is good. When I first read the concept, it sounded pretty lame. But it is far from it. In fact, “Girl” is the best new comedy of the fall…by far.

“New Girl” premieres Tuesday, September 20th at 9 p.m. on FOX…

Photo Credit: Isabella Vosmikova/FOX

"Two and a Half Men": Man, Do I Take This Show Seriously

So after more hype than…I don’t know what, CBS finally premiered the new “Two and a Half Men.” And I would give it a mixed review…

First, the pluses. I liked seeing Charlie’s former girlfriends at the funeral and Evelyn’s (Holland Taylor) reaction was classic Evelyn. And Jon Cryer was so good that I actually teared up as Alan said goodbye to Charlie. The John Stamos cameo was classic and seeing Dharma and Greg together again (from Chuck Lorre’s “Dharma and Greg”) was a nice surprise. And you just knew that Rose (Melanie Lynskey) would somehow be involved with Charlie’s death. Man, do I hope we haven’t seen the last of her…

I would also say that for the most part, Ashton Kutcher (Walden) was good, but I’m still adjusting to seeing him play it so straight and awkward. He’s usually the airheaded, breezy type and this is totally new. Not bad necessarily, just new. There’s clearly a lot more to explore there, so I can’t say I’m completely on board with him just yet.

Now to the minuses. I will concede that I pay WAY too much attention to this show. I blame it on the constant rerun watching. But I was disappointed with how some of Charlie’s girlfriends were depicted at the funeral. It was a “Two and a Half Men” trademark to use the same actresses over and over to play Charlie’s girlfriends, but I think they should have played who were they were the last time we saw them. In that case, Mia (Emmanuelle Vaugier) and Chelsea (Jennifer Taylor), who were ex-fiances, would never have talked about Charlie so disparagingly. And I don’t think Courtney (Jenny McCarthy) would have badmouthed him that way either. And both times Liz Vassey played Charlie’s girlfriend (Seasons 1 and 8), their relationship ended cordially. Plus, Jodi Lyn O’Keefe is so well known for playing Isabella, the Satanist, so her funeral behavior didn’t work either. I have to believe that one of them would have been sad to see Charlie gone.

But maybe that was the point. Chuck Lorre was so determined to make us not miss Charlie that he was willing to forsake the show’s very history to trash him.

Wow. I do take this show seriously, don’t I?

I will, of course, stick with it. But I’m not ready to say I’m okay with it just yet.

And for the record. I do miss Charlie. Very much…

So what did you guys think? Do you think they handled Charlie’s exit well?

My Thoughts on the Emmys: What Were the Most Squealworthy Moments?

The day after the Emmys there are always countless posts on the Internet rating the night’s best and worst moments and best and worst outfits.

Here is another one of those posts…

Let me cut right to the chase and tell you what moment had me squealing the most—the appearance of Charlie Sheen. I started squealing when they showed him backstage going into the commercial break. And when he took the stage and said he wanted to address the people from “Two and a Half Men”? You could hear a pin drop in that audience.

I have to question the director and why he didn’t get a reaction shot from Jon Cryer at any point during Charlie’s presentation. I’m guessing Chuck Lorre probably told the cameras to not even think about it. I also think the Emmys writers made a huge mistake in not cutting the troll joke from Jon Cryer and Ashton Kutcher’s presentation. Since Charlie had made his speech to make amends, pointing out his past transgressions just wasn’t funny and Jon and Ashton came off extremely awkward.

The moment that had me squealing the second-most was Michael Bolton singing “Captain Jack Sparrow” with Lonely Island. When that song was nominated, I actually wrote on my personal Facebook page that I thought he should sing it at the Emmys, never dreaming it would actually happen. In fact, that entire Lonely Island medley was squealworthy. John Stamos as Andy Samberg? Maya Rudolph as Lady Gaga? You could see Akon laughing all the way through “I Just Had Sex.” He was probably just so stunned to be there…

My third most squealworthy moment? Melissa McCarthy winning for Best Actress in a Comedy. People had written off “Mike & Molly” all season long, so it was nice to see Melissa get the recognition she deserves. The beauty pageant bit with all of the nominees was funny too, although it did sort of infringe on Melissa’s acceptance speech a little. I would’ve loved to have heard her say something snarky in reference to the blogger who said she didn’t want to see bigger people have sex…

And my fourth squealing moment came near the end when Barry Pepper won the award for Best Actor in a TV Movie/Mini-Series for his portrayal of Bobby Kennedy in “The Kennedys.” No matter what you might think about the mini-series, Pepper was extraordinary in the role and totally deserved the award. I just wish he could have been there to accept it…

Here are some other random thoughts about last night’s show…

Jane Lynch can sing! Why doesn’t “Glee” let her sing more? The opening was a tad long and had a bad segue between the taped segment and her live entrance, but it still worked…

The Emmy Tones were just the kind of lame thing that Joel McHale would make fun of on “The Soup,” not the kind of thing he would actually be a part of. Of course, I think that was the point. They were supposed to be lame. And boy, did they succeed…

We didn’t get the usual Stephen Colbert-Steve Carell presenters pairing, but we did get Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel. And it was even better. We did get the usual Ricky Gervais presentation—although on tape—and I think it was his funniest yet…

Martha Plimpton looked amazing, but what was that mini-dress Laura Linney was wearing?...

The funniest line of the night was from Kim Kardashian in “The Office” spoof: “I don’t understand that word, work? Am I saying that correctly?”…

Boo hiss to the Emmy voters for returning to form and giving “The Amazing Race” the Emmy for Outstanding Reality Competition Program. No way “Top Chef All-Stars” didn’t deserve that…

I thought the video montages for each category were very good, but I didn’t see any clips from “NCIS” in the drama montage. Seeing as how it’s the #1 drama on TV, probably would’ve been a good idea. Kudos, though, for including “Psych” in the comedy montage…

I found it interesting that they held the Movie/Mini-Series categories until the end. Maybe because of the movie stars like Kate Winslet?...

So good to see Paul McCrane presenting after his win for Best Guest Actor in a Drama for “Harry’s Law.” But I think the Creative Arts Emmys could have used just a tad more love…

I’m sure there were people accidentally left out of the “In Memoriam” segment. There always are. But I thought the choice of “Hallelujah” for the song to accompany it was a stroke of genius. And The Canadian Tenors sounded amazing…

I thought there was a great variety of presenters and the pairings were interesting. Plus, all of them—with the exception of Jon and Ashton—were entertaining. But did any pairing look better than Rob Lowe and Sofia Vergara? Jon Stewart was right about them making beautiful children…

What in the world was Gwyneth Paltrow wearing?...

They should consider letting Steve Levitan (creator of “Modern Family”) host next year. The moment when the director switched to his wife in the audience after he admitted his kids had walked in on them “in the act” was pretty classic…

Jane Lynch was a good host because she didn’t make it about her. She just smoothly introduced the presenters with funny jokes—often jokes that had nothing to do with them. Her best one? “People often ask me why I’m a lesbian. Ladies and gentlemen, the cast of ‘Entourage.’”…

Speaking of which, how good did Jerry Ferrara (Turtle) look last night?...

Finally, congratulations to the other big winners: Julie Bowen and Ty Burrell (Modern Family), Jim Parsons (“The Big Bang Theory”), “The Daily Show,” Margo Martindale (“Justified”), Peter Dinklage (“Game of Thrones”), Julianna Margulies (“The Good Wife”), Kyle Chandler (“Friday Night Lights”), Maggie Smith (“Downton Abbey”), Guy Pearce (“Mildred Pierce”), Kate Winslet (“Mildred Pierce”), “Downton Abbey,” “Mad Men” and “Modern Family.”

So what did you guys think of the Emmys? What were your favorite moments of the night?

Photos Credit: Phil McCarten/FOX

See How the "Bang" Got So Big...

The new fall season not only means new shows for the broadcast networks, it also means newly syndicated shows begin their run.

One of those is “The Big Bang Theory,” which begins its run this week. If you’re a late comer to this one, you absolutely need to watch it from the beginning when it was a little more innocent and Sheldon (Jim Parsons) was still just a supporting character.

Those of us in the Huntington-Charleston area are getting an added bonus as “Bang” will follow “Two and a Half Men”—just as it originally did on CBS—on WVAH FOX 11 (“Men” airs at 6:30 p.m. and 7 p.m., while “Bang” airs at 7:30 p.m.).

If “Bang” is not syndicated in your area, no worries. You can also catch it from the beginning on TBS, beginning Tuesday, September 20th at 8 p.m. “Bang” will air on TBS Tuesdays from 8-11 p.m. and Thursdays 9-11 p.m.

Photo Credit: Sonja Flemming/CBS

Primetime Emmys: What Did You Think?

So it’s after midnight and I should have been in bed an hour ago, so I won’t post anything about the Emmys now. I’ll just save all of my thoughts—and there are several of them—for tomorrow.

I’ll just tell you right now that I thought the show was pretty good. And at least four moments had me whooping and hollering. One of them you can guess from the picture…

In the meantime, feel free to share your Emmy thoughts. What did you think of the show? Were you happy with the winners?

Stay Tuned for more tomorrow…

Photo Credit: Phil McCarten/FOX

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pick of the Week: All Will Be Revealed?

It’s taken a short hiatus, but now that we’ve entered the new Fall TV Season, it’s time to bring back the Pick of the Week.

And this week’s Pick is the most anticipated premiere of the season…

My Pick of the Week is the season premiere of “Two and a Half Men.”

CBS has kept this one locked up tight—no episode pictures on the press site, no clips in the promos, no screeners to the media. We will all see what happens together Monday night.

As the premiere has gotten closer, I’ve been feeling more and more sad about the show going on without Charlie Sheen. Originally, I was angry that Charlie had screwed everything up and thought he deserved to be punished. But reliving the show’s funniest moments through nightly rerun viewings, my anger started fading away. And now that I’m once again in love with Charlie after his appearances on “The Tonight Show” and the Emmys, I’m sadder than ever…

But I’ll still be watching…

“Two and a Half Men” premieres Monday, September 19th at 9 p.m. on CBS…

For the rest of you who miss Charlie, remember that you can still see him Monday on the “Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen.” Roastmaster Seth MacFarlane will oversee what is sure to be the raunchiest and most raucous 90 minutes Comedy Central has ever aired.

The roast begins at 10 p.m. Be warned that there will be LOTS of foul language and crude jokes…

Photo Credit: Matt Hoyle/CBS & Warner Bros.

This Week's Premiere Schedule

Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the week that will set your DVRs on fire. THIS is Fall Premiere Week…

Here are the premieres scheduled for this week. New shows are marked with (*)…

Monday, September 19th

Dancing With the Stars—8 PM (2 hrs.)—ABC

How I Met Your Mother—8 PM (1 hr.)—CBS

The Sing-Off—8 PM (2 hrs.)—NBC

Two and a Half Men—9 PM—CBS

*2 Broke Girls—9:31 PM—CBS

Castle—10:01 PM—ABC

Hawaii Five-O—10 PM—CBS

*The Playboy Club—10 PM—NBC

And if you missed last week’s premiere of “Ringer,” you can watch an encore at 9 p.m. on The CW…

Tuesday, September 20th

Glee—8 PM—FOX

Dancing With the Stars: Meet the Cast—8 PM—ABC

The Biggest Loser—8 PM (2 hrs.)—NBC


*New Girl—9 PM—FOX

Dancing With the Stars (Results)—9 PM—ABC

NCIS: Los Angeles—9 PM—CBS

Raising Hope—9:30 PM—FOX

*Unforgettable—10 PM—CBS

Body of Proof—10:01 PM—ABC

Wednesday, September 21st

*The X Factor—8 PM (2 hrs.)—FOX

The Middle—8 PM (1 hr.)—ABC

Modern Family—9 PM (1 hr.)—ABC

Criminal Minds—9 PM—CBS

Harry’s Law—9 PM—NBC

*Revenge—10 PM—ABC


Law & Order: SVU—10 PM—NBC

Thursday, September 22nd

*The X Factor (Part 2)—8 PM—FOX

*Charlie’s Angels—8 PM—ABC

Community—8 PM—NBC

The Big Bang Theory—8 PM (1 hr.)—CBS

Parks & Recreation—8:30 PM—NBC

Grey’s Anatomy—9 PM (2 hrs.)—ABC

*Person of Interest—9 PM—CBS

The Office—9 PM—NBC

*Whitney—9:31 PM—NBC

The Mentalist—10 PM—CBS

*Prime Suspect—10 PM—NBC

Friday, September 23rd

Nikita—8 PM—CW

Kitchen Nightmares—8 PM—FOX

*A Gifted Man—8 PM—CBS

Supernatural—9 PM—CW

Fringe—9 PM—FOX


Blue Bloods—10 PM—CBS

Sunday, September 25th

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition—7 PM (2 hrs.)—ABC

60 Minutes—7 PM—CBS

The Amazing Race—8 PM—CBS

The Simpsons—8 PM—FOX

The Cleveland Show—8:30 PM—FOX

Family Guy—9 PM—FOX

The Good Wife—9 PM—CBS

Desperate Housewives—9 PM—ABC

American Dad—9:30 PM—FOX

*Pan Am—10 PM—ABC

CSI: Miami—10 PM—CBS

Stay Tuned for my reviews of the new shows throughout the week, as well as my review of Ted Danson joining the cast of “CSI”…

Photo Credits: Mario Perez/CBS, John Russo/NBC, John Paul Filo/CBS

"The Playboy Club" Review: Much Ado About Nothing?

Ever notice how all of these protests over the content of shows and movies usually end up being much ado about nothing?

Well that is definitely how I would describe the protests over NBC’s new drama, “The Playboy Club.” There’s nothing controversial about “Club” whatsoever. In fact, I’m still a little on the fence about whether it’s even worth watching at all…

The show quickly establishes the jazzy setting of Chicago’s Playboy Club in the 60s. The music is jumping, the bunnies are playing and the guys are paying—for cigarettes and drinks, that is. Maureen (Amber Heard), the new bunny, is attracting the attention of all the men—including ambitious attorney Nick Dalton (Eddie Cibrian). But when she accidentally murders a mob boss she attracted the attention of, she and Nick end up working together to cover up the murder.

And that’s all before the opening titles…

There’s also Carol-Lynne (Laura Benanti), the oldest bunny and Nick’s girlfriend, who constantly butts heads with Billy (David Krumholtz), the club’s manager, about how the bunnies should behave. Brenda (Naturi Naughton) is fighting against prejudice as she strives to become the first “chocolate centerfold” and sweet air-headed Alice (Leah Renee) is hiding a secret that could’ve been a real bombshell if it had been presented in a way that actually made sense…

In all honesty, “Club” was not nearly as tedious as I thought it would be. Cibrian is perfectly in his element as Nick, the gentleman with a shady edge. And Heard is perfectly cast as the girl-next-door with a little shadiness going on as well. Both of them do a good job of selling a story that is pretty unrealistic.

But the biggest problem of the show is that it can’t really decide what it is. Is it a show about the behind-the-scenes struggles of Playboy bunnies? Is it a showcase for the music and culture of the 60s featuring actors playing iconic performers? Or is it a mystery set against the world of the mob?

At this point, I’m not sure. And I don’t think the show is sure either. But I think it will need to make up its mind if it’s going to survive—especially in its tough Monday night timeslot.

“The Playboy Club” premieres Monday, September 19th at 10 p.m. on NBC…

Photo Credit: John Russo/NBC

Saturday, September 17, 2011

"Two Broke Girls" Review: The Final Piece to the CBS Monday Comedy Puzzle?

Have you ever gone to a movie that looked really funny in the promos only to discover that all of the good jokes were in the promos?

That’s the feeling I got watching the new CBS comedy, “2 Broke Girls” as I had already seen EVERY single joke in the promos. And that’s a shame, because otherwise, I probably would’ve really enjoyed it.

Maybe I just watch too much CBS…

The two girls in the title are Max (Kat Dennings) and Caroline (Beth Behrs). Max is a sharp-tongued Brooklyn waitress who doesn’t take crap from anyone—especially customers. Caroline is an heiress whose assets have just been frozen because of her father’s legal troubles. Their two worlds collide when Caroline gets a job in Max’s restaurant.

No surprise, the two clash instantly. But when Max learns more about Caroline’s life, she starts to feel sorry for her and the two realize they may be able to help each other.

There are some storyline issues like Garrett Morris’ character having absolutely no purpose and a pointless story involving Max’s boyfriend. But the show has real potential for future storylines as the girls team up to find ways to make money. And Kat Dennings is very appealing, even as she’s insulting everyone.

CBS has been looking for the final piece to its Monday comedy puzzle for a long time and I think they’ve finally found it. They just need to have a word with their promo department…

“2 Broke Girls” premieres Monday, September 19th at 9:30 p.m. on CBS, before moving to its regular timeslot of Mondays at 8:30 p.m...

Photo Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

"The Secret Circle" Review: Have I Fallen Under Its Spell?

When I first saw the trailer for “The Secret Circle,” I actually snickered a little.

I mean, it was another teenager finds out she has powers story. And I had just seen that with “The Nine Lives of Chloe King.” So imagine my surprise when I found myself being entertained…

Cassie (Britt Robertson) is a 16-year-old living a normal life until her mother dies in a horrific accident—or what she thinks was an accident (We actually see what happens). Her mother’s death sends her to live with her grandmother and that’s where things get interesting as Cassie soon finds herself as the final piece in a secret circle of witches.

But teenage witches aren’t the only thing going on here. There are also adults with hidden agendas and massive powers of their own. Think of it as the Force versus the Dark Side. And, of course, there are the beginnings of a love triangle as Cassie finds herself attracted to fellow witch (or is that warlock?) Adam (Thomas Dekker), whose longtime girlfriend is the circle’s unofficial leader. And the attraction is mutual…

The premiere wastes no time in setting up the action as Cassie loses her mother in the first 10 minutes in one of the creepiest, yet coolest, death scenes I’ve ever seen.

Coming from the team behind “The Vampire Diaries” and based on a novel series by the author of the “Diaries” books, “Circle” is meant to be a good soapy drama for young adults with a cool sci-fi edge (Think of it as “Gossip Girl” with actual witches.). And I think it succeeds on both of those—at least in the premiere. Whether it can keep it up, remains to be seen.

“The Secret Circle” premieres Thursday, September 15th at 9 p.m. on The CW…

Photo Credit:The CW

Sunday, September 11, 2011

This Week's Premiere Schedule

The Fall TV season really doesn’t kick off until next week, but as usual, The CW is getting a bit of an early start. Plus, CBS is jumpstarting “Survivor” to avoid “The X Factor” premiere and NBC is using a potent season finale to jumpstart three of its shows…

Here are the season premieres scheduled for this week…

Tuesday, September 13th

90210—8 PM—The CW

Ringer—9 PM—The CW

*Read my review here.

Parenthood—10 PM—NBC

Wednesday, September 14th

H8R—8 PM—The CW

*In this new reality show, celebrities confront the everyday people who hate them.

Survivor: South Pacific—8 PM (90 min.)—CBS

America’s Next Top Model—9 PM—The CW

Up All Night—10 PM—NBC

*Read my review here.

Free Agents—10:30 PM—NBC

*Read my review here.

Thursday, September 15th

The Vampire Diaries—8 PM—The CW

The Secret Circle—9 PM—The CW

*Stay tuned for my review.

It’s also important to note that “America’s Got Talent” will wrap up its season with the final performance show Tuesday at 9 p.m. and the two-hour finale Wednesday at 8 p.m. Plus, “Big Brother” will conclude its season Wednesday at 9:30 p.m.

Photo Credits: The CW & David Gray/The CW

"Up All Night"/"Free Agents" Review: Can Appealing Stars Make the Difference?

Let’s face it. NBC could use some help. So they’re looking for it from likeable stars in high concept comedies.

But do they get it? Yes and no…

“Up All Night,” which has gotten A LOT of attention from the network promo department in recent weeks, stars Christina Applegate, Will Arnett and Maya Rudolph. Applegate and Arnett are Reagan and Chris, two brand-new parents who are having a hard time giving up their partying ways. Rudolph is Ava, a daytime talk-show host and Reagan’s boss. She is completely clueless about the changes a baby has brought to Reagan’s life. And Chris is trying to adjust to being a stay-at-home dad.

You can’t get more likeable than Applegate, Arnett and Rudolph, but for me, it was just on the verge of being really funny. I laughed a few times—mostly at Rudolph—but it just wasn’t as laugh out loud funny as I would expect from this cast. But as I said, it’s on the verge, which means it could get better. Of course, it could also get worse…

“Up All Night” premieres Wednesday, September 14th at 10 p.m. on NBC before moving to its regular timeslot of Wednesdays at 8…

I much prefer NBC’s other new Wednesday night comedy, “Free Agents.” However, I have a bad feeling this will be one of those shows that I love, but nobody else does…

Based on a British hit of the same name, “Agents” stars Hank Azaria and Kathryn Hahn as Alex and Helen, two people we know are perfect for each other but can’t seem to get it figured out for themselves. Alex is in the middle of a divorce and Helen is still grieving the loss of her fiancé. Plus, they’re co-workers. But they can’t seem to help turning to each other when they need a friend…or certain other things…

“Agents” is not laugh out loud funny, but there’s something about the main characters that I really like. Maybe I’m just a sucker for a good romance. Or maybe I’m such a fan of Hank Azaria I’ll watch him in anything. And he and Hahn, who has deserved a starring role in a show way before this, have excellent chemistry. I also like Anthony Head as their inappropriate boss, Stephen (Head played the same role in the British version.).

Like I said, this is probably this year’s show that I like and no one else does (Last year, it was “Better With You”), but I say if you like romantic comedies with heart and appealing leads, you should give this one a try…

“Free Agents” premieres Wednesday, September 14th at 10:30 p.m. on NBC, before moving to its regular timeslot of Wednesdays at 8:30…

Photo Credits: Trae Patton/NBC & Dean Hendler/NBC

"Ringer" Review: Is It a Worthy Return for Sarah Michelle Gellar?

I never watched “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” so I haven’t been jumping up and down about Sarah Michelle Gellar’s return to The CW like the “Buffy” fans have been.

But now I find myself jumping up and down a little because Gellar’s return to TV is bringing us a cool, sophisticated soap opera. And I’m a huge sucker for those…

“Ringer” stars Gellar in two distinct roles. There’s Bridget, the ex-stripper and addict struggling to stay clean, and Siobhan, who lives in the lap of luxury. Bridget is scheduled to testify at a murder trial, but fearing for her life, she runs off to spend time with her sister for the first time in six years. To Bridget, Siobhan has the perfect life. But when Siobhan mysteriously disappears and Bridget takes over her life, Bridget soon discovers Siobhan is far from perfect.

There are romantic complications, including her ice-cold marriage to Andrew (Ioan Gruffudd), step-daughter complications and mysterious men following her complications. Not to mention that Bridget is being pursued by the FBI agent in charge of the murder case she was scheduled to testify for (the always welcome Nestor Carbonell). And just when you think there couldn’t possibly be any more complications, there are.

And that’s what makes this show fun. It could just be your usual run-of-the-mill twins switch places story, but it finds a way to be so much more than that. Sarah Michelle Gellar is perfect as both twins, to whom she manages to give two distinct personalities. Plus it helps that the premiere looks fantastic and is beautifully and suspensefully directed.

You may remember that “Ringer” was originally developed for CBS, but it was decided it was more appropriate for The CW. It was a great call as the show probably would have languished at CBS since it is much more suited for The CW audience.

I may have not been looking forward to Gellar’s TV return before, but I am definitely looking forward to it now. It looks like I may have finally found a new primetime soap opera to cherish…

“Ringer” premieres Tuesday, September 13th at 9 p.m. on The CW…

Photo Credit: The CW