Wednesday, October 01, 2008

I Want to Believe

Well, Fall TV is in full swing. I've been watching for a few weeks now and I have to say, I have mixed feelings about returning shows and new shows.

We've already gotten one review of Fringe and while I tend to agree I have a few comments and reservations. I really want to believe in this show, I want it to succeed, if for no other reason than to have Joshua Jackson back on TV. But it seems inevitable that something that JJ Abrams helped create would bound to not be a success. And I both fear and hope this is the case. Fringe has all the classic elements of The X-Files with the influx of Abrams trademark character studies (if was not a dysfunctional family drama wrapped up in a spy show then I am not sure at all what it was, and if Lost is not a study of people with twisted pasts thrown onto a creepy island than what is it?). The mystery at the heart of Fringe is interesting, but I have yet to find it compelling. What I do find compelling is the relationship between our beloved Pacey and mad Denethor. This father-son dynamic is what drives me to watch week-after-week, even though my interest in the show itself is lackluster. But I want to believe so I'll keep watching.

Selvi just wrot about her interest in the premiere of Pushing Daisies. Last year I was a big believer in this show. I mean, what is not to like about Jim Dale narrating a TV show? And there is much to love in this dramedy but when I found out it was being programmed opposite Bones I was presented with a dilemma (which would go away if I had a dual-tuner TiVo but that's a topic for another blog). While I want to like this show, I have to admit, I never did watch the last episode of the first season, I'm not sure I really want to watch this show on DVD (unlike previous shows by this creator, namely Wonderfalls and Dead Like Me), what I've ultimately decided is I may watch this eventually but it's not part of my must-see TV schedule. I may have to revist this, but I find myself more interested in Bones than Pushing Daisies.

I don't have to believe when it comes to Heroes. I am genuinly excited about this season. Having Hiro back in our time is fabulous. The the study of good/evil and hero/villian is fabulous. When our view of HRG was transformed overnight and we saw him not as the villian but as the hero, this show revealed that it could be so much more than a drama about people with powers, or another iteration of comics on the screen. I feel there was potential in last season but as we all know the writer's strike stopped that cold. And I agree with the general sentiment that the real danger of the season was not presented up front. We did not have that problem with last week's premier. We knew from the first that there was a problem in the future that was trying to be fixed. My biggest complaint is primarily: how often can they rely on someone from the future warning them of an impending doom? We need a new way to drive the season's storyline. This combined with the idea that anyone can gain a power reminds me a little of The 4400 and we all know how that worked out. But on the plus side, Heroes is part of my must watch shows. I stop everything I'm doing to watch it on Monday nights.
In fact Monday has become my favorite night of the week for TV watching. With the return of Chuck and Life there is a a solid block of viewing. I can hear the NBC honcho's salivating over a viewer like me. I was able to watch the premiers of Chuck and Life last week thanks to And I was not disappointed. I'm still not sure what to make of Life but I love Damian Lewis from the first moment I saw him in Band of Brothers. He brings humor and gravitas to this roll. And his quirks as a detective are almost as funny as something you see on USA. The Chuck premiere was almost perfect. It had everything I had come to love in the show, and it did what every returning show's first episode should do: remind you of what happened before, and some nice homages to the pilot episode. All the characters were back in their quirkiness. I think I love Adam Baldwin a little more each day. And the guest casting this season is second to known: Michale Clarke Duncan this week and John Laraquette next?!!!? The one thing the episode failed to do was remind us of Bryce Larkin and the secretive organization Fulcrum. Fulcrum shows up at the end of the episode but there is no context for the name. It is only threw the happenstance that I have been watching older episodes on DVD that I even remember this.

I will save my thoughts on the ever loveable House for another time. But this is a season I hope to see something great. And I think I might.

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