Posts Tagged ‘TV’

Dear NBC: Please Don’t Ruin Next Week’s “The Office”

Monday, October 5th, 2009

The Office premiered a few weeks ago, and it’s been a pretty good run so far this season. But there’s a ‘special event’ coming up this week *mdash; Jim and Pam’s wedding — and I’ve got a certain feeling of dread thinking about it. Let’s face it: TV networks love to let us down. So I’m asking you, NBC, from the bottom of my fanboy heart, not to ruin what should otherwise be an enjoyable and eventful episode of your fine show. I realize that the show is already in the bag, but I want to complain anyway, so I will. Got that?

Please, no drama. The Office is a comedy, after all. Drama can be good every once in a while, but you don’t need to inject it into every damn episode. This week’s show is a big one, and it would be nice if, just for once, everything could go off without a hitch. Can you imagine that? A fun episode through and through, with no cold feet or misunderstandings about such-and-such or reappearances of sketchy former boyfriends to install a feeling of doubt or any of those other tired, old wedding clichés… it would be refreshing.

The trend over the last decade or so has been to inject drama into sitcoms, and it’s worked pretty well in general. But… there’s always to danger of too much of a good thing. Just because it can make a certain series interesting and engaging (Scrubs comes immediately to mind, ditto Pushing Daisies) doesn’t mean that every episode ever needs it. Sometimes, I just want to laugh. There once was a time when adding a bit of emotion into an otherwise funny show was a rare thing and something to be admired. But then it became a fad, and everyone started doing it. I blame Friends, and Ross and Rachel. But as it has become the norm instead of the exception, it’s become a bit old. And now we’ve come half a circle, NBC, and you can do the new and different thing by not injecting some sort of crisis or epiphany or disaster into this week’s episode.

I’ve been pulling for Jim and Pam for a long time, NBC. After all, Jim is a guy I can relate to, and Pam is smokin’ hot. I just want them to be happy. The best moments on the show are the ones where we see them as a pair, happy and glad of each others’ company and relating like human beings. Yes, their drama worked early on and even drew me into the show, but now is the time for smiles and celebration. I want to see Michael be an idiot, and Dwight show some of that weird, off-putting ‘expert’ charm, and Andy fail with the ladies. I want to see all those things. But I also want to see Jim and Pam smiling and happy at the end of the episode, without some formulaic romantic comedy grade BS to foul up the hour. Is that too much to ask?

The biggest surprise of all, NBC, would be if you were to surprise me with no surprises. Just let things happen the way they should. I want a sense of finality when I turn the show off, not some lingering cloud of doom over the characters’ (and my own) heads.

R.I.P., Pushing Daisies (Prehumously)

Saturday, October 13th, 2007

Hmmm… a show that is funny, yet dramatic, creatively visual, and has a quirky premise. How many episodes is Pushing Daisies going to last? Four? Seven? Probably, the network execs (ooooh… those vilifiable executives!) will decide that the show’s budget is too high for the ratings it gets, and will push it to… I dunno… Thursdays at 3 a.m.? Or they could kill it outright by moving it to the Friday night death slot.

And then, of course, the inevitable articles lamenting its death, and possibly pointing to the fan outcry as a possibly means of resurrection. Fifty bonus points to each journalist who ‘creatively’ suggests that maybe the should could make a comeback if only it could use the main character’s power on itself!

Or, they could let a show thrive. I’m not brilliant network executive, with private jets and 3-martini lunches, so I can’t interpret the show’s ratings. Maybe it’s doing spectacularly? It would be a sin to kill a show that started so strong, and has so much room to grow.

It really makes you question the nature of death. Can there be a God when a vile, wretched show like Desperate Hosewives will live, probably forever, sucking the blood of the innocent and sinless shows in its wake, while something as cute as Pushing Daisies is almost certain to kick the bucket.

A note to TV show producers

Friday, April 6th, 2007

You may post new episodes of shows like Battlestar Galactica and The Office on the iTunes store, but you have to do it faster. I can usually find a new episode of such a show from the BitTorrent network an hour after it airs, and can have it downloaded before the night is over. If I miss my show, I want to see it ASAP, not 24 hours after it airs. Get your shows up faster, because I’d much rather pay for and download a new episode right away with the iTunes store instead of waiting for my P2P download to finish. As long as I can get it faster via P2P, I will.

Pissy-Pant Pusillanimous People in… Boston

Wednesday, January 31st, 2007

Have you heard about the bomb scare in Boston? Advertisements for Aqua Teen Hunger Force were placed in 10 locations around the city, in a ‘guerilla marketing’ campaign. They feature the Mooninites, and, according to Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, each device “had a very sinister appearance. It had a battery behind it, and wires.”

A battery. And wires. Soooooo scary!

Christ. I own so many things that could be mistaken for bombs, I must be a threat, too. We better outlaw all Lite-Brites in Massachusetts, too!

What really gets my goat about this whole thing is the overreaction. Even after Turner Broadcasting has admitted that they’re advertisements for their show, the authorities are still taking them down. So as the bill for a simple bomb scare climbs into the ‘hundreds of thousands of dollars’ (according to the Boston authorities), they’re still wasting money when they know there are no bombs. The article even mentions that NORAD is watching over things. That’s good, in case the Mooninites form the Quad Laser, right?

Boston’s mayor called the campaign “outrageous”, and blaming it on “corporate greed.” Come again? In this context, then all advertisement is about corporate greed, right? After all, having a product (in this case, a TV show) and wanting to sell it is a greedy thing to do. It sounds to me like the Boston authorities are being the greedy ones. If they can, they’ll try to get some money out of this from Turner. All because of their overreaction to perfectly harmless light boards!

Edward Davis, the Boston Police Commissioner, had this little nugget of wisdom to comment on the scare: “In the environment nowadays … we really have to look at the motivation of the company here and why this happened.” If there is an ‘environment’, then I’m thinking it’s one of fear. Terror… even. So, if we react to terror in such a pusillanimous way, aren’t the real terrorists (the ones who kill innocent people to scare others) getting exactly what they want?

This has me so angry, I’m going to watch all of the ATHF Mooninite episodes back-to-back-to-back. I just hope that nobody sees Ignignokt flipping the bird through my window, or they might call in a bomb scare!


Sunday, October 22nd, 2006

In case you were wondering, like Doctor Girlfriend, whether Klaus Nomi was from the future or what, here he is in his plastic tuxedo (“All but ze bow-tie!”).

Battlestar Galactica – “Exodus, Part 2”

Friday, October 20th, 2006

Holy cow. Part of me expected the Vichy France-like state of affairs of BSG to continue the entire third season. I had a sneaking suspicion that it would end with this episode — after all, it is called “Exodus.” And it’s not really over, either: there are collaborators to deal with, flashbacks to see, and Cylon acts of retribution to withstand.

I wish I had put it up last week (so you’d know I’m not lying), but I totally called the destruction of the Pegasus. There’s no such thing as a free lunch, they say, so I figured that the ship would go. It was either that or the Galactica, but that would require renaming the series, wouldn’t it? The destruction of the two Cylon Basestars was another added bonus, and made me almost as happy as the destruction of the Ori and Wraith ships in the Stargate SG-1 episode “The Pegasus Project.” Adama’s tactic of jumping into the atmosphere, launching vipers, and jumping away was neat, but it was fairly reckless. The best ‘sci fi’ shot of the episode was definately the Basestars pounding the holy hell out of Galactica. I expected a commercial before we got to see Pegasus give the Cylons what for. And Lee totally went all Worf on ’em when he gave the order for ramming speed.

Speaking of changes, Ellen Tigh’s death (at the hands of Saul, no less) opens up a world of dramatic possibilities. I think her poisoning/death scene with Saul was one of the best moments of the show. But what happens now? Will he shave the beard in remorse (I hope not; I like Pirate Tigh)? Will Colonel Tigh descend deeper into his alcoholism? Will we see Ellen again, confirming the wide rumor that she is a Cylon? I personally doubt she is, because why would theBrother Cavill model have traded sex with another Cylon for Saul’s freedom? The drive of the skinjobs on the show is to frak humans, not each other. This is also why I believe that Baltar is not a Cylon — that theory’s just crazy.

I (as I’m sure almost everyone else did) also called it that Kacey wasn’t really a Cylon-human hybrid. Why the hell would Hera have been so important to them if Kacey was allowed to fall down the stairs (or more likely was pushed down the stairs by Leoben)? But wouldn’t it have been more interesting if we hadn’t found out that Kacey was someone else’s daughter? Imagine the overwhelming tension Starbuck would feel on each Viper run, with her daughter waiting for her to retrn? That would have been good storytelling.

Tom Zarek is apparently a Laura Roslin fanboi now. Will she become President again? Will there be a few episodes about some sort of Interstellar Constitutional Convention? Will Zarek become the new Vice President? If RDM and company can get the politics into the show without being preachy and boring, I think they should go for it. It’s dangerous ground, however — remember the Next Generation episodes about the Klingon High Council? I found those shows to be awful.

Finally, I wish more had happened with Baltar. I read in Entertainment Weekly that a regular on the show stabs him in the neck with a pencil. I’m so disappointed that didn’t happen! Clearly, he’s stuck with the Cylons. That element of the story, the cowardly traitor dreading being discovered, is gone. Unless Baltar becomes a super-scientist double agent! It looked like the preview for next week’s episode showed Gaeta as one of the colonials on trial for collaboration. I bet he is cleared of charges when it is revealed that he was the informant for the Resistence.

Predictions for next week:

  1. Jammer is put to death.
  2. Gaeta is put on trial, sentenced to death, and awaiting execution when he receives a repreive because it can be proved that he gave the Resistence their intelligence.
  3. We’ll learn something ominous about Hera.
  4. Baltar is taken captive by the Cylons, who bring him to their homeworld (this might be a few episodes in the future).