Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Random TV Thoughts

Ben-Hur was on the other night. I wonder how many people think that's a true story?

I'm glad CBS moved The Big Bang Theory from opposite Antiques Roadshow to follow Two and Half Men. Each has something that tickles me. Two and a Half Men is crude and rude and starting to age a bit, but it is well-executed, and Jon Cryer's twice-divorced character's comically disastrous life helps me look back and laugh a little at my early-2000's marital train wrecks. As for The Big Bang Theory, I went to college with guys like that.

So far The National Parks on PBS is pretty much vintage Ken Burns, which will delight some and drive others crazy. I have liked most of his past work, and this looks to be of the same caliber.

Fox's Sunday night animation lineup had a so-so start. The Simpsons is aging nicely; not the juggernaut it once was, but still capable of some solid laughs. The Cleveland Show had its moments, but seemed a bit uneven. I wonder if it can hold up without resorting to the same shtick used in Family Guy, which itself did OK by going with its strengths, Stewie and Brian. American Dad was definitely the edgiest of the bunch; a send-up of war reenactments was a decent idea, but going heavy on the PTSD angle dragged it down a bit.


Dale said...

Mike, I agree on the "animation domination" lineup; as much as I adore Family Guy and American Dad, I'm skeptical of the Cleveland Show -- I wonder if Mr. McFarlane is finally stretching himself too thin -- and this first episode didn't allay my concerns. It had its moments, but geez, it looks structurally identical with FG -- same four friends, same family dynamic. Will Cleveland turn out to have a wildly religious father? Will his wife have wealthy parents? Sheesh. I would rather see all of this 'new stuff' folded in as the Simpsons have done it -- by expanding the lineup of characters but keeping the core characters fixed.

We'll see.

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