A new series is launching that is set after the original TRON but before Legacy. Looks pretty interesting and could really help fill the major gaps that Legacy did not have time to develop.
Category Archives: TV Show
You blink and suddenly it’s 10 years and 10 seasons later for one of WB’s longest running series Smallville. As a life-long Superman geek, the conclusion of this show is a momentous occasion for fans everywhere. However, I have not been a fan of the show over the years. I started pretty faithfully for the first couple of seasons but the ‘freak of the week’ formula turned me off and tuned me out (along with a lot of others). I did still drop back in for special episodes like the introduction of Flash, Hawkman, Aquaman, the Justice League, and epic appearance of the late Christopher Reeves. To me, the show got overly ambitious by ‘shoe-horning’ in every DC character and story arc from the Superman mythology and after a while, I just fell too far behind to care. But when the conclusion of the series was announced, I had to ‘fan up’ and join back into the journey to see how this would all end (and Superman would begin).
Returning back into Season 10 was not as traumatic as I thought it would be. I kept up enough to know of the major new happenings like the exit of Chloe, Lex, Lana, Lionel, the new romance with Lois, and the new environment of Metropolis. A LOT is happening right now to wrap up all the loose ends. Clark, known as ‘The Blur’ to the rest of the world, is on the verge of revealing himself as a public hero. There is a witch-hunt for heroes making it illegal for vigilantes to operate- it’s very similar to Marvel’s Mutant Registration Act or the ‘Legends’ mini-series from the DC universe. A particularly emotional moment was when fans of The Blur posted their gratitude for their unseen hero. This was the pivotal turning point for Clark with his decision to come out of hiding. Clark and Lois are newly engaged so wedding plans are in full swing while fending off Darkseid and his minions. What I am finding really enjoyable and what sets this apart from old Smallville is that it feels more grand set in Metropolis. No longer are the claustrophobic storylines contained to the a small town but it finally gets the scope it deserves. The solid chemistry between our super love birds is reminiscent of another great old show, Lois and Clark. The focus right now is the how Clark evolves into his ‘mild-manner’ persona and his reasons not to be a masked hero. In this past episode, he dons the glasses for the first time and has his first humbling and bumbling Clark Kent moment. I have to admit, I was smiling all the way through. All in all, this is geek heaven for Man of Steel and DC universe fans. At this past San Diego Comic Con, Smallville fanatics were treated to a glimpse of the suit (probably passed down from Superman Returns) which was a magical moment.
No doubt that geeks, fans, and nerds from all over will tune into the epic finale of Smallville. It’s not too late to get acclimated- I am certainly glad I did. I am looking forward to believing again that a man can fly.
Long time fans, let me hear what you think and how this season compares to the past. While my rating for Smallville has gone up and down over the years, I give this current season 10 a 4 Babbles out of 5. Check it out!
A review by guest Babbler Whitney Sanderlin:
EUReKA, the first 3 seasons:
I know some of you have very low opinions of movies produced by the Syfy Channel but did you know they also do t.v. series? Yes, they do! And I’m so glad you’re here reading this review of EUReKA so that you can find out more about this aspect of the wonderful world of television. Honestly, the first time this show popped up on my Netflix suggestions all I could think of was vacuum cleaners. I’m not sure what that says about me but I didn’t watch this show until I ran out of everything else I wanted to watch.
The show had me at the first episode.
The premise is a US Marshal of semi-average intelligence named Jack Carter, manages to wreak his car near a scientific community which has almost magical qualities. Marshal Carter helps to solve a crime and then gets asked back on a permanent basis to be Sheriff of this small town. You can imagine the possibility of chaos and disaster when people do ordinary things … you know, the idea that Murphy’s Law is alive and well and working against you. Well, when really, really smart people are doing things that are NOT ordinary or normal, the possibility for chaos increases exponentially, apparently. So you insert this Sheriff Carter who is definitely not as smart as everyone else but he sees things more practically and is able, because he’s not wrapped up in formulas and theories, to see things from a different perspective. Plus, he’s fearless and manages to make up for multitude of smarts.
The first season introduces the cast of characters, including the company where most of the geniuses work, Global Dynamics. The season ends on a cliff-hanger that plays off the budding romance between Dr. Allison Blake and Sheriff Carter. EUReKA has a bit of a time-problem (as in temporal shift) in the first season and the second season moves away from the romance between Dr. Blake and the Sheriff and starts a new plot and romance between Dr. Blake and her ex-husband. The third season continues the story-line from Season 2 and is centered around the new corporate fixer for Global Dynamics and her ulterior motives and secretive secrets. Mid-way through the season, EUReKA has another time-problem and the while the story does not shift, the show loses a major character. Apparently the fourth season starts off with another time-alteration and the story shifts again. I haven’t watched the 4th season yet.
Pros: The premise is a great idea. It’s as plausible as a magical town in the Pacific Northwest which is full of geniuses who don’t always think of the consequences of their actions. Sheriff Carter is always the dumbest person in the room and almost always the person who gets to save the day … or at least help. I’m not bored at all and frequently, I laugh. How often does a science-fiction based t.v. series do that? (Besides “Big Bang Theory” that is)
Cons: The use of the temporal shift hasn’t gotten old YET but it will. It manages to feel natural for now but it seems almost lazy use of a plot device to re-invent a show just because you’re dealing with geniuses who know how to alter time. I’m a romantic sci-fi person and I want to see Sheriff Carter and Dr. Blake get together at some point (if they do in Season 4, don’t tell me!). Also, the use of Sheriff Carter to play the idiot all the time is a little tongue-in-cheek because, hello, he solves a lot of their problems. It seems silly to keep playing stupid when it’s obvious he very much is NOT stupid.
I enjoy this show. I am looking forward to Season 4 and many happy returns.
I give it 4 Babbles out of 5.
Thanks Whitney for another great review!
NBC attempts to tap into the nerd culture once again by launching a new superhero series called The Cape. It’s about police officer Vince Faraday that is framed for a crime he didn’t commit (of course). On the run, he encounters circus performers that teach him the art of illusion and outfit him with some mystical gear in exchange for a bunch of crimes he helps commit. After a typical montage, he becomes a superhero in about 5 mins and can now fight crime with a cape that he can manipulate like a whip/lasso. He is joined by Summer Glau as Orwell, the tech savy and all-knowing operator.
Overall, this new series is ridiculous. It’s not creative nor ambitious and pretty much steals from many comic book stories that have come before. The costume is uninspired, his ‘powers’ are cheesy, and the whole tone of the show it lame. The story telegraphs exactly where its going from the very start and capitalizes on every cliché from the superhero genre. To make matters worst, the 2 hour pilot felt about 1 1/2 too long. At least Heroes took a couple of seasons to get bad. The Cape took about 4 minutes.
The lead David Lyons is TV’s bland and boring version of Daniel Craig (James Bond). He is equally uninteresting as The Cape or in his civilian alter ego. If you want to ensure a TV show gets cancelled, add Summer Glau. She is the kiss of death of anything good or bad. I never understood her appeal from Firefly, to the Sarah Conner Chronicles, or to this.
I like NBC because they seem interested in nerd culture. With past shows like Heroes or current ones like Chuck, at least they are trying to give us fans something to watch. But NBC, please don’t insult our intelligence. Take some risks and try to create something new and original instead of this rehashed mess. I really don’t understand how something so mediocre get’s the green light and actually makes it to the airwaves. It’s one of many questions I will ask God when I get to Heaven. Until then, I will be avoiding The Cape and will be removing it from my DVR list. NBC, please hang up The Cape and quit making us nerds look so bad.
I give this a half Babble out of 5.
While this is not a screencap from tonight’s episode, it’s a great visual of what makes NBC’s CHUCK so great. The formula: Chicks + Guns x Attitude = Awesomeness! Tonight episode: “Chuck vs. The Balcony” On assignment at a French vineyard, Chuck juggles tracking down a nano-chip with trying to create the perfect romantic moment to propose to Sarah.
CHUCK is on Monday nights 8/7 C on NBC
It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but if you are TV geeks like us Babblers, it’s almost equally as dreadful. Don’t get us wrong, we love all the eggnog and little baby Jesus, but after weeks of being deprived new episodes of our favorite series is enough to go ‘Dexter’ on someone. Well the wait is almost over and in preparation for the Spring line up, the Babblers wanted to list our top 5 shows of 2010. So here they are in no particular order:
1. 30 Rock (NBC)
BabbleOn has been a long time fan of the ‘SNL’ parody 30 Rock. Besides all of us being Tina Fey geeks, the witty dialogue and zany characters make this show hilarious and surreal. Continue reading
I’m with Jeff – “The Walking Dead” didn’t need racism and it doesn’t need to be dealing with spousal abuse. Maybe they aren’t introducing it as a theme or a subject matter they’ll deal with for a while, but it’s certainly not something you can just ‘throw into the mix’ and let it lie there.
I didn’t read the comic so I’m coming at it from a fresh, TV-only viewer perspective. I think they should stick to the topics at hand: zombie apocalypse, finding other survivors, what to do next!?!?!?
Also in the latest episode, episode 3 titled “Tell it to the Frogs”, there’s certainly already plenty of drama with (spoiler alert) Rick finding his wife and son! I mean, roll the credits, he found them! Just a second, he’s going back into the city!?!?!
On one hand, I didn’t really buy that. But on the other, yeah!, let’s get back to the zombies!
I’m digging the show and trying to just enjoy the ride and not over analyze it – it’s a zombie show so… you have to keep that in mind.
However, I do think there needs to be a good catch-phrase for Rick and/or all of them. Maybe when they shoot a zombie they can say something catchy… how about: “Have a rest, walker.” Or “This is a no walking zone.” or “No brains for you – one year.”
I’m a zombie fan like anyone else.
“The Walking Dead” episode one “Days Gone By” is set at an unknown date, but probably right around now. The viewer isn’t given more info than the main character so we don’t really know what’s happened or what caused the apocalyptic state. It’s a fun ride starting to find out.
I dig the reality created in this show – it’s mostly typical world stuff… but with zombies. Always a great addition.
I’m impressed right off with the acting, character building speed, personal twists for said characters and overall high quality all around.
“The Walking Dead” is fairly brutal, not campy and jumped right in the deep end with the tough choices people have to make when people start turning into zombies.
The opening scene (spoiler alert) sets the stage when the lone law man walks away from his car looking for gas among the abandoned cars. He comes across a little “girl” (not knowing yet she’s a zombie, but we do, of course). He can’t help but want to believe she’s not a zombie and he wants to help her.
Turning out to be a zombie and coming towards him, he has no choice but to shoot her in the head. It’s rough, but he makes the tough decision.
After that we see a couple scenes, before the ‘zombie invasion’ started, when Rick gets shot. He wakes up and it’s full-swing apocalypse. He can’t find his wife, who he spoke about having marital trouble with in the previous scene, and son. So the opening scene happens sometime later when he’s still struggling with wanting to help/find his family, but knows better than to let a lil’ girl zombie stick around without a bullet thru that cute blond head.
I dig the reality and I think they did a great job all around with the decisions they made and execution of the production. I was pretty tense during most of the show and am very interested to see where this is going.
I give it 5 Babbles
I am going to review two shows that I have recently started watching. They share nothing and everything in common. While no where near the same hemisphere as the same genre, they both share three common themes: reluctant leadership, a community of misfits, and survival in bleak conditions.
The Walking Dead
AMC’s newest drama premiered on Halloween night and ended up being the highest rated cable series of 2010. Based on a comic book series (which I am a big fan), the story follows sheriff Rick Grimes as he wakes up in the hospital after an inexplicable zombie apocalypse has occurred. The world now is a cold, harsh place with a sparse population of human survivors. As a sheriff, Grimes is seemingly the only law enforcement left on the planet although almost nothing is revealed about the state of the US or the rest of the world. Danger lurks behind every corner and surviving is based on ingenuity and keeping quiet. Survivors encountered are desperate and flawed while strangely clinging onto a ‘normal life’.
However, make no mistake, this is a DRAMA, not an action/horror series. Walking Dead reminds me of Sci-Fi’s Battlestar Galactica. The villains and action are secondary to the interpersonal conflict of the community. Like BSG, Walking Dead is about how humans cope in dire situations and how they need each other to survive. This series will be a character study not a zombie war.
The effects and environment have a scope of a cinematic level (not surprising since it’s created by Director Frank Darabont). Production value is high and in my opinion, it is one of the best shot tv series I have ever seen. From what I understand, it will eventually diverge from the comic book and explore new ground. I am so excited about this series and it looks like the 8.1 million viewers are too.
Community (Season 1)
I also started watching NBC’s Community this past week. Where else can you find more ‘walking dead’ than at a community college? I know I am a season too late but there wasn’t room on my TV vegging schedule until now. Community follows an ex-lawyer Jeff Winger as he wakes up in a second-rate community college trying to finish up his bogus undergrad degree. The community college world is a cold, harsh place with a sparse intelligent population. Seemingly the only person that has a grip on reality, Winger becomes the fearless leader of a misfit Spanish study group. Fellow students encountered are desperate and flawed while strangely clinging onto a ‘normal life’. Community is about how humans cope in dire situations and how they need each other to survive. These characters have no idea where they are going or what their purpose is- but they just a doing it together as a community.
The writing is really witty and the characters are lovable. I would consider shows like The Office and Arrested Development as cousins to Community. I have to admit that I have not been a fan of Joel McHale until I started watching this. His snarky comments and resistant compassion makes for a great leading character. Early reports are that season 2 is not as strong so that’s making me worry a bit. But for now, I will enjoy journeying through season 1. I haven’t seen any zombies yet but it wouldn’t surprise me if one showed up!
I’m not much for horror films so “for Halloween” I’ll review the first few episodes of “Eastbound and Down” – the HBO series with Danny McBride.
I dig Danny McBride’s humor (“Land of the Lost”, “The Foot Fist Way”, various skits online with Will Ferrell) – wherever Danny is, Will Ferrell’s not far behind and neither is their style of humor.
However, I haven’t been convinced yet that he can carry a whole movie let alone a whole series. Skits are great for him b/c you get in, hit the joke and get out. But for sustained comedy, I’m not so sure.
“Eastbound and Down” is a classic “McBride” premise of overconfident, arrogant, nobody – in this case Kenny Powers – thinks too much of himself and let’s it known to anyone around him.
Kenny is a down-and-out baseball player who was once great and imploded his career and everything around him. He winds up back in his hometown teaching at the highschool and hijinks ensue as he tries to relive and regain greatness.
The first 3 episodes set the stage and develop many of the characters of his return to hometown: his brother’s family, the school teaches, highschool flame, etc. They do a good job of surrounding him with targets and various subjects of torment of his over-the-top personality.
Again, I’m not convinced an entire series can be build around this, but they set the stage for good skit-like situations in each episode like when he makes a “celebrity” appearance at a car dealership (owner played by Will Ferrell). In later episodes/seasons, he goes to play in Mexico and maybe changes in location like that can keep the series fresh.
I don’t think “Eastbound and Down” should be compared with other series and such. Just like I don’t expect (and I don’t want) a serious storyline – please, no “on a very special ‘Eastbound and Down’…” So as long as the jokes are frequent and varied, I think it will be a good show to check out… as long as it’s not the same joke over and over (again, varied).
NOTE: The show is on HBO so beware of plenty of vulgarity and the like.
I’ll have to reserve full rating until I’ve seen more, but for the premise, first first episodes, etc., I’ll give it 3 babbles.
I don’t have cable, so I can only watch Breaking Bad on DVD. By the time I received the first disc of season one from Netflix, season two had just concluded. So while I knew a little about the premise, and that the show had won multiple Emmys, nothing prepared me for the pilot.
The episode starts with a cold open – a pair of men’s khaki pants fly in slow motion into the air across the desert. Then a big Winnebago speeds down a dirt road followed by police sirens. The man driving is wearing nothing but socks, shoes, white briefs, and a gas mask. We see that in the back of the van are materials for chemistry materials and two unconscious men who may or may not be dead. The driver crashes the RV into a pile of sand and stumbles out. Then, he puts his shirt on, pulls out a camcorder, and videotapes a goodbye message to his wife and son. Finally, as the sirens get louder, he aims a pistol in the direction of the cop cars, the opening credits roll.
The next forty minutes are a flashback of the events that led Walter White (Bryan Cranston), an average, middle-aged chemistry teacher, to this point. We learn he’s a chemistry teacher who works nights to support his pregnant wife and teenage son who has high functioning cerebral palsy. Days after his fiftieth birthday, he visits a doctor who diagnoses him with inoperable lung cancer. Overwhelmed by the thought of leaving his family with medical bills, he accidentally runs into a former student (Aaron Paul) who is now a drug dealer. The two form an unlikely partnership to make fast money cooking crystal methamphetamine.
The pilot episode of Breaking Bad might be the most interesting and unpredictable forty-five minutes of television I’ve ever seen, rivaled only by each following episode. When I receive a disc in the mail, I watch all three or four episodes in one sitting and rush back to the mailbox hoping the next one will arrive by the next day. Season three just premiered on AMC, but I just started season two on DVD. I have no idea how much longer Cranston and the creators are going to be able to keep this up, but I’m staying with them.