Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Fall is in the Air

It's that time again. I used to look forward to it. Now, I apprehend it with dread. It is the new Fall television season, and this year, it is a craptastic wasteland. It is a new low, even by sketchy television standards.

Hey, if any television executives happen to wander in to the Lounge, let me help you out. You are not losing audience shares because of cable, the internet, Netflix, movies or video games. You are losing your audience because you inflate your weekly schedule with barely-sufferable dumbed-down sanitized drivel. You killed Firefly. You killed West Wing. You killed Northern Exposure. You killed Millennium. You are killing Deadwood. You kill anything with a heart or a spark.

You load us up with low-budget low-brow melodramatic "unscripted reality" bullshit. For drama, you give us the same three doctor/lawyer/cop shows, re-issued and repackaged with different actors year after year after year.

Why are your audiences leaving? It's because we hate you.

That having been said, there are still a couple of bright spots on what is an otherwise dark horizon. This year, my television viewing will be limited to the following few shows:

1. Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. My God, what an awful title. However, after one episode of Aaron Sorkin's latest cocaine-infused opus, I am hooked. As expected, the writing is smart, fast and funny. There is depth and darkness. There is controversy. There is wit.

While many of the players and settings are allegorical, loose caricatures of real people and places, one reference Monday night was not. They named Pat Roberton by name and called him out for the narrow minded bigot that he is. BY NAME! I'm sold. I love this show. Fortunately, it has no competition at 10:00 on Monday.

2. Smallville. Yes, it's past its prime. The teenage Clark Kent is now 30, or something. Lex Luthor is still simmering in cartoonish pre-evil. Superman cannot yet fly. However, the women are still hot, and writing is still creative. Which means...

3. I'll have to DVR The Office. It's on opposite Smallville, but the miracle of modern technology allows me to record one while I watch the other. Oooh... High tech!

4. Deadwood. So, I don't have HBO. That means I'll just have to wait for Season 3 to come out on DVD, and get it from Netflix. God bless Netflix. Of course HBO is canceling the show, those Cocksuckers...

5. And finally, of course, there is Battlestar Galactica, the best show on basic cable (or broadcast telelvision, for that matter.) Season Three begins on the Sci Fi channel on October 6, at 9:00. Season 2.5 was just released on DVD, so there is no reason you can't catch up in time.

Just remember, start with the miniseries and watch it in order. Don't skip around, for the love of pete!

This means that the Lounge's sister Blog, And Thy Have a Plan, will be warming up from its long dormancy. So will Lee Adama is a Cylon.

I know I preach endlessly about this show, but I only do it because I love you, and I want you to have good telelvision. So far, I have converted Mrs G&T, Anonymous, The Other Anonymous, Mrs. The Other Anonymous, Ryan, and Carl. Are you next? You better Frakin' believe it.


  1. law student6:47 AM

    I only watched Battlestar Galactica because it was on and I was too tired for LRW or another homicide.

  2. I watched the first four episodes of BSG season 1 last night.

    I still like House. The Hugh Laurie character is of course why.

    Then it is Family Guy and ATHF.

  3. My favorite show is pinks on the speed channel. No, its not a gay fashion show.

  4. Patrick Dempsey2:00 PM

    I dont want Brian to watch the premier of my show tonight anyhow. I used to be totally geek, now I'm totally sheek.

  5. Kristin Kreuk2:04 PM

    I hate when Brian watches my show and masturbates. Even though, I am hot.

  6. Brian's got it right (wow, that was tough to say...)

    To say that most television is for the lowest common denominator is insulting to that particular integer - There are shows to marry brides off to alaskan husbands as "reality" tv, and then fictional shows about the very same subject. The dumbing-down of broadcasts goes across the spectrum - from comedy to drama to news.

    There are, however, a few bright stars on the horizon - House - definitely. BSG - smart, funny, witty, insightful. Studio 60 for the same reasons. Of course, all of those are reasons why they'll all get cancelled anyway.

    That will just leave porn... thank heavens for that...

  7. Here here!! Huzzah for porn!

  8. Anonymous5:11 PM

  9. Jason6:57 PM

    David Eich, one of BSGs executive producers, was my first editor at the college newspaper. I think he had a crush on my wife. Perhaps some day I'll be able to trade her in on a cylon hottie.

    If you like the Office, particularly the BBC version, check out The Thick of It. It won the UK's version of the Emmy for commedy. Its about an idiot politician and his staff. So, its kind of a reality show for me.

  10. Does anyone else watch Survivorman on the Discovery channel? The guy spends a week in some crazy environment with nothing but his wits and a utility knife. He even films it all himself. It's insanely compelling. Tivo it bitches...

  11. Survivorman rocks!
    Its all bark and bugs and lizards and leaves.
    The basic gist of the episodes - stay dry, get a fire going, roast the closest beastie.

    Its McGuyver meets Fear Factor

  12. Jason, see if you can trade your wife for something really cool, like a tour of the Galactica set.

    Tom, I'd like to drop you in the desert and watch you eat bugs. (Survivorman is a great show, but it's even better if you are drunk)

  13. I dont know why you are so surprised - British people are taught from an early age that American TV is crap

  14. If I was on the Survivorman show it would be called Whimpering In A Hole Until He Dies Man.

  15. I have ordered the BG miniseries - will you shut up now?

  16. He won't shut up. He's under my control now.


Be compelling.

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