TV Gal Is Trapped Under a 'Rock'
She really wanted to like '30 Rock,' but 'Studio 60' has already won her loyalty
On to my regularly scheduled column.
I can't tell you how much I wanted to like "30 Rock" -- I love Tina Fey -– she's smart, sassy and funny. (Plus, people tell me I look like her. I totally don't, but it's nice to hear). And it's a gutsy move to leave the safe haven of "SNL" to pursue a new project. But, alas, I just didn't find the comedy that funny. And here's the worst part –- it is even less funny since Jane Krakowski replaced Rachel Dratch as Liz's (Fey) best friend, Jenna. There was no reason to demote Dratch to playing a bunch of different characters on the show (in the premiere, for no particular reason, she appears as a cat trainer) Alec Baldwin remains the only reason to watch the show –- even after watching the pilot four (yes, four) times I still found him hilarious. And newcomer Jack McBrayer as Kenneth the page does great funny work with his few lines. The rest of the show, not so great. Three stars.
Okay, now I would like to have a little tete-a-tete TV Gal to TV Gal reader. I need to understand why you're not watching "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" (Monday, NBC, 10 p.m.). Oh, don't lie to me. I know you're not watching and I want to know why. The gets better with every episode -- it's funny, sharp and who knew Sarah Paulson was this talented? Now, I only had two shows I really liked this season and I'm not ready to lose "Studio 60." Can you give the show another chance?
Taking a Break From the Schedule and From Reality
So, as "Prison Break" headed off for its baseball hiatus, it seems to have lost its mind. Really, is it necessary to kill off everyone? The Sara story line is the only interesting thing the show has going on right now (seriously, I can't believe they are digging a hole again), so why kill off her dad? I'm also tired of the President not being seen when we all know it's because Patricia Wettig is over on "Brothers & Sisters." And was anyone clamoring to see Haywire again? Anyone? That whole story line screams time filler. Remember I only criticize because I care. I want the show back to its season one glory.
Quotes of the Week
"Hug it out, bitch." Michael quoting "Entourage" to end a fight with Dwight on "The Office." Thanks to Daniella for the quote.
"I'm dating, and it comes with snacks." Meredith on "Grey's Anatomy." Thanks to Ken for the quote.
"I know just how to kick off our first night as roomies. 'Saved By The Bell' marathon starts in 5." Marco to Ellie on "Degrassi: The Next Generation." Thanks to Robert for the quote.
"Can we have this conversation moving?" Danny on "Studio 60 on a Sunset Strip." Have they ever not walked and talked on an Aaron Sorkin show? Thanks to David for the quote.
"We're like the Cleavers; except we're religious, and we like to fool around," Eric to Kevin on "7th Heaven." Thanks to Anthony for the quote.
"It's one of the most horrible moments of my whole life." Lorelai to Sookie about her breakup with Luke on "Gilmore Girls."
"Listen. Learn. Don't get involved. I want a list in three days." Ben to Goodwin and Ethan immediately after the plane crash on "Lost." Creepy.
Where Have I Seen Them Before?
Aaron recognized that Judy Greer, Maggie the bearded lady on "My Name Is Earl," was Kitty on "Arrested Development." She was also Brandy on last season's "Love Monkey."
There were a slew of familiar faces on the season premiere of "Veronica Mars." Lisa was the first reader to recognize that James Jordan, who played Lucky last season, is the TA Tim Foyle (memo to the costume department: get him a better wig. He looks ridiculous). Patrick Fabian was Veronica's professor Dr. Landry. Danny recognized him as Professor Lasky on "Saved By the Bell: The College Year." He was also Gavin Price on "Joan of Arcadia" and Jerry on "Providence." Jason Beghe was Cormac Fitzpatrick. Beghe was John Hayes on "Everwood" (remember he was Anne Heche's husband), Sergeant Finch on "American Dreams," and many years ago he was Jeffrey, Matt's boyfriend on "Melrose Place."
It's a good week for the stars of "Homefront" (one of my all time favorite gone-too-soon shows). Wendy Phillips, Anne on "Homefront," is network executive Shelley on "Studio 60." We recently saw her as Peg on "Big Love." Jessica Steen, Linda on "Homefront," was the security guard killed by the big time gambler on "CSI." Steen was also Special Agent Paula Cassidy on "NCIS."
And how upsetting was it that David Eigenberg, Steve on "Sex and the City," was the geek who killed his beauty queen wife on "CSI." Alexondra Lee, Callie on "Party of Five," was his beauty queen wife.
Andy recognized Chris Lowell, Piz on "Veronica Mars," was Jonathan on "life as we know it."
John is convinced that Christine Rose needs her own show. She's currently playing the Petrelli brothers "Heroes" and now she's playing Ted's mom on "How I Met Your Mother."
Katie recognized L. Scott Caldwell, Rose on "Lost," as the NICU treating Abby and Luka's baby on "ER." She first played the role back in 2004 when Abby had a NICU rotation.
Robin recognized Rachel Boston, Beth on "American Dreams" as Sam and David's teacher on "7th Heaven."
Craig was the first to tell me that Mary Bailey, the bartender on "Jericho" was Kelly on "Coach."
Highlights of the Week Ahead
All times listed are Eastern Standard Time for October 9 to 15
Picking up "7th Heaven" for an 11th season may go down in television history as a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad idea. In order to save the series, The CW is moving "7th Heaven" and "Runaway" to Sunday night effective immediately and moving the comedies to Monday night. If you missed the season premieres of "Everybody Hates Chris," "All of Us," "Girlfriends" and "The Game" (don't worry practically everyone did), The CW is repeating them Monday night beginning at 8 p.m.
So, this is confusing, I've already made "Studio 60" mandatory viewing and now I'm going to request that you also watch the season premiere of "What About Brian" (Monday, ABC, 10 p.m.) which is on a the same time. Yes, this is stressful, but consider it a personal favor. I've seen the first two episode and I really liked them. We pick up six months after Marjorie and Brian's big throwdown. Brian's left town and returns after surviving a car accident he had no business surviving. The show zigs and zags in and around the love triangle of Adam, Marjorie and Brian and here's the kicker I totally buy it -- I believe that both these men would be positively smitten with Marjorie and that she would be horrendously conflicted. The best part is I can't predict how the show is going to sort itself out. Such good stuff. Even better stuff, our personal favorite Amanda Foreman (Megan on "Felicity" and Marshall's wife on "Alias") and Jason George (who has the distinction of being hilarious on "Off Centre" a nearly impossible task) join the cast. After you watch the season premiere, let me know what you think.
You know how lately I've been going through this "I'm all set" phase with television story lines? Well I'm all set with the "I have sex one time and end up pregnant" on TV. Yes, yes, I know this is possible (I believe that was a very special episode of my 8th grade health class), but it is so cliched. So, I'm less than thrilled that Lane is pregnant on "Gilmore Girls" (Tuesday, the CW, 8 p.m.), how about you?
Is anyone picking up what "Grey's Anatomy" (Thursday, ABC, 9 p.m.) is putting down? That these two seemingly rational men would put up with Meredith's shenanigans? It occurred to me last week that I'm beginning to feel the way about "Grey's Anatomy" the way I felt about "Ally McBeal." I can understand why it's so popular, I just don't particularly enjoy watching the show every week. That might be because I want to throttle Meredith and McDreamy. I'd watch a spin-off with the rest of the characters, especially Christina and Addison. This week, Christina continues to help Burke with his rehab while the hospital becomes a lot more McSteamier.
Let's see, "Runaway" (Sunday, the CW, 9 p.m.) is hurting in the ratings, so we move it against "Desperate Housewives?" Doesn't that sound just plain wrong?
So my mom was so right about "Brothers & Sisters" (Sunday, ABC, 10 p.m.). The show is so growing on me and, as my friends Jeff and Robert like to say, I like all the yelling. But I think the real story on "Brothers & Sisters" is going to be Dave Annable who is giving a standout performance and holding his own against Sally Field. This week Annable's Justin gets a new job while Kitty grows closer to Warren (after all they did work together on "Ally McBeal").
That's all for today. I will be back next week to talk about "Lost" (still recovering from the stunning third season premiere), "Veronica Mars" and "The Nine." Have a question, seen a familiar face, have an inside scoop or want to nominate a quote of the week? Write me at email@example.com