Thursday, September 9, 2010

The TV Report

Just a quick recap on the shows I'm currently watching.

Top Chef
The only reality show I consistently watch. It's still good although this season has been very unforgettable, the contestants not really standing out in either their personalities or their cooking. Still, I love the Bravo format, and I love the judges. (Will Gail Simmons still be on Top Chef now that she's getting her own Top Chef: Desserts spin off?)

Inspector Lewis
Good old-fashioned gruesome whodunnits. I'm not even sick of the beautiful shots of Oxford. And Hathaway (Laurence Fox) is the best second banana on television, and a perfect counter-balance to the literal-minded Lewis.

Dexter, Season 4
I'm watching this on Netflix. What I love about this show is how Dexter is constantly growing, even though he is a sociopath and a serial killer. He reminds me of Data on Star Trek: Next Generation. They are both fascinated by humans, and long to find a way to fit in. This year seems to be about Dexter trying to find a way to have a normal family life while continuing to satisfy his urge to kill. By the way, Jennifer Carpenter (who plays Dexter's sister on the show) gets better and better every season.

True Blood
Another season or gory, trashy fun. Some of the sub-plots are more interesting than others, but the main storyline (Russell Edgington as a would-be Vampire dictator) is truly great. Is it too much to ask that HBO produce a prequel series starring Eric Northman (Alexander Skarsgard) in his years as a Nazi impostor tracking down SS werewolves?

As this show gets more unpredictable week by week it just gets better and better. Envelope-pushing, bleak, and sporadically very funny. The poker buddies talking about the origin of the word "faggot." Louie's date with the woman whose chemistry told her that he was a loser. The kiss with the southern sheriff. Here's my problem with the show: I just don't love Louie's stand-up bits, and it's a big part of the show. Maybe, if the show continues, it will be like Seinfeld and they'll be dropped.

Mad Men
No excuses, but this is the first season of Mad Men that I've watched. A big mistake. (Yes, Charlene, you told me so. You too, Kevin). Last week's episode (almost a two-person play with Don and Peggy) is some of the best television I've ever seen (and I've seen a lot of television).

This is the golden age of television. All of these shows are so much better than their counterparts in film.


  1. I'm happy you're watching "Mad Men" finally, so that you can see the show is really THAT good. I mean, not only is it superbly written, but it also looks amazing. But, obviously, you know that now.

  2. Agreed totally with Top Chef, including how weak this season has been... can't wait for the next one.

  3. I'm embarrassed to say I have not seen Mad Men yet either. But I'm going to sign my lazy, cheap self up for netflix and change that. sooner or later.