Mid-Fall TV Report (2013): Part 2

THE SEASONS, THEY KEEP A CHANGIN’

Now for Part 2, covering what I didn’t get a chance to cover in Part 1.  Mainly the new American and British shows with a sprinkling of the Korean ones.  Didn’t quite get to all the reviews I wanted to get to but at least I’ll cover most of them here.

K-Drama

Basketball (빠스껫 볼)

The story covers the beginnings of the sport in Korea, especially during the Japanese occupation.  The documentary preceding the drama was fascinating.  The drama itself incorporates a lot of historically accurate details and the producers use a text graphic (aka lower third as it typically appears on the lower third part of the screen) to explain every single thing.  I spent most of the first two episodes reading and not watching or investing my emotion in the characters.  In addition, the drama is filmed like a play with harsh lighting and overly dramatic emotions.  A bit too makjang for my liking.  Love at first sight?  Seriously?  Consider me skeptical.  These newish actors aren’t talented or experienced enough to pull it off convincingly or without breaking into random song.

K-Variety

Oh! My Baby (오! 마이 베이비)

Just finished my First Impressions Review of this which you can check out here.  In short, there is a trend of networks trying to take the popular shows from other networks and create their own.  Dad, Where Are You Going? does it better even if the newness of that show has worn off.

American TV

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Expected too much and got too little in return.  The show is this season’s major disappointment for viewers and ratings performance.  It needs more focus on the story from episode to episode and it would help the story if they incorporated more superheroes instead of being flashy.

Masters of Sex

Yes, the show is sexy but it’s much more than that.  Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan are excellent at showing their character’s insecurities and have a great on-screen rapport.  At times the drama is funny, other times the drama is very reflective about sex and social stigma around it and even a little sad.  It’s a very human story.

Once Upon a Time in Wonderland

The show isn’t terrible but the show isn’t great either.  As I didn’t watch the original, I wanted to see what the Once Upon a Time fuss was about.  I love the Alice in Wonderland stories but I’m indifferent to the mashing up of several children’s stories in one.  I guess it’s the same with the former but it feels like ABC and their parent company Disney really wants to push all those Disney movies.  I’m unimpressed by the genie and want the obstacles facing Alice to be a little more logical and less, ‘Let’s solve this with magic.’  I know what you’re thinking, ‘This is Wonderland.  It’s supposed to be magical.’  However, the magic here seems like an unearned, quick fix for the plot.

Sleepy Hollow

I wasn’t completely sold on this show after watching the pilot but the series is shaping up nicely.  My favorite part about the show are the witty exchanges from Ichabod and Abbie.  It’s suspenseful drama and a fun way to look at history.

Haven

Just when I was about to throw in the towel with this show, they reel me back in.  I love that Colin Ferguson is guest starring and love his bad guy persona even more, a total departure from Eureka’s Sheriff Carter.  Finally, Audrey and Nathan are on the same page and I even love Duke’s new love interest, Jennifer.

Hawaii Five-O

I never really watched this show because I loved the plot.  I was in love with the beautiful Hawaiian scenery on my HD screen.  However, the show proved to be exciting on its own merits.  This season, I am sooo not a fan of Kono being off on her trying to save her boyfriend.  Other than that, the show has been much the same ‘ol, same ‘ol.  Trust me, I’m not racing home to tune into this show but I do enjoy it when I’m watching it.

Scandal

Scandal has jumped the shark.  Sort of. It’s not that I’m not invested in the show anymore but it’s just not as good as the previous seasons.  I don’t think  it’s entirely credible that the White House could face so much scandal (The President, First Lady, etc.) and have it not completely put the upcoming campaign on halt.  Despite a disappoint season, Joe Morton is incredibly awesome and terrifying at the same time.  Don’t mess with Eli Pope.

Grey’s Anatomy

People hook up, break up, and everything in-between.  Oh and throw in a few surgeries here and there.  The show has been running for a very long time so there are bound to be ups and downs.  Perhaps they’re making way for Sandra Oh’s departure but I can’t say that I’m a fan of Meredith and Christina being at odds with each other for too much longer.

White Collar

As much as I like the buddy dramedy aspect of Neal and Peter, I hate the cat and mouse game they play with each other.  Ultimately, I feel like the show is telling me that since Neal can’t change, there will be a day when Peter will have to bring Neal down.

Dracula

Jonathan Rhys Meyers makes bad look oh-so-good.  Dracula is such a puff drama.  It’s more about the sets, costumes and the actors and less about the plot overall.  And yet, I’m thoroughly entertained.  I’m not very impressed with the actress playing Mina Murray but it’s nice to see Merlin’s Katie McGrath (playing Lucy) again.  Plus, Lady Jayne is comically amusing.  Oh, is she not supposed to make me laugh?

Grimm

Ever since Nick was kidnapped, he hasn’t been quite the same.  I’ve never been a big fan of Juliette but now that she’s in on the secret, she feels more a part of the gang.  I can’t foresee where they want to take the show this season and I was a bit surprised at the sudden death of Eric Renard shortly after Season 3 started.

The Michael J. Fox Show

Between this and The Crazy Ones, Michael J. Fox has the better and funnier show here.  However, I’ve been reluctant to continue watching.  My loyalties and my precious time are dedicated to other programs.

The Crazy Ones

So wanted this to be funny but it’s so not.  And I’m totally bummed about since I heart the main two leads.  You’ll be crazy to watch this one.  Get it?  Okay, I’ll stop.

Parenthood

I’m pretty behind on this show but I have to be in the mood to watch it.  The Braverman clan to be an honest look at American families today; they make me laugh, annoy me and warm my heart all at the same time.  I usually marathon the episodes all at once so all I know is that there is Amber has a wedding coming up and Sarah is not so happy about it.  Although Julia and Joel has been a rock solid couple, this year they’ve got some issues to deal with and deal with the fact they have differences in opinion.

New Girl

I love that Coach (Damon Wayans, Jr.) is back.  And even more, Winston has been growing on me as a character.  I’m a little upset with Schmidt at the moment as a person but his storyline has been golden this season.  He blamed Jess and Nick for losing both Cece and Elizabeth and has moved out of the apartment.  I do hope he doesn’t stay away for long but the show’s been very funny.

Reign

The show is absolutely ridonculous.  Teenage angst, soapy, nonsensical kissing left and right.  Unfortunately, I’m totally addicted and riding along with this soap opera.  ‘Scuse me, if you find me randomly tweeting, “Seriously?  Making out again? #Reign”.

The Originals

The spinoff series to The Vampire Diaries.  Wouldn’t say this show is a whirlwind of a drama, the way The Vampire Diaries was in its first few seasons.  However, I do love Joseph Morgan and Daniel Gillies so I come back for them.  It appears there may be sumthin’ sumthin’ between Elijah and Hayley now or is that just me?  Just another reason for Klaus to stake Elijah again.

The Vampire Diaries

I like that we’ve come full circle with the doppelganger storyline.  However, my heart just isn’t there.  I’m still a loyal watcher but the fun and the magic is gone.  Maybe it’s because you don’t have Klaus and Caroline going back and forth with sarcastic one-liners.  I miss those.  Caroline should make a trip to New Orleans soon or vice versa.

Super Fun Night

Is it just me or is Rebel Wilson not as funny with an American accent?  Something is definitely amiss with this sitcom.  Some of the weight jokes and nerd jokes are very cliché but I like the actors, specifically Kimmie’s roommates, so I’m going to stick around for the season and see if it improves.

Modern Family

I’m pretty loyal to this show but I can’t say that many of the episodes recently have been funny.  Yet, they’re a part of my regular watch cycle.

The Good Wife

Oh my god, the shit has hit the fan and now Alicia is off at her own firm and Peter may be helping her out in an unethical fashion and, and, and…  This cannot end well and I’m waiting (and dreading) for the chips to fall.  For now, Alicia has nowhere to go but up.  It totally slayed me when Alicia’s brother visited Will and told him that Alicia may have been scared of her own feelings.  That’s totally going to come up later.  And how cute is Eli with Natalie (America Ferrera)?  So many great things about the show down to the tiniest detail.

Almost Human

The series just started up this week and it’s a little early to say.  The show is very interesting but the highlight is the buddy aspect.  Let’s hope that they are able to keep the sarcasm and suspense alive.

Elementary

I wasn’t a fan of Rhys Ifans coming on to play Mycroft.  He just seems so comical to me.  However, he’s on the creepy side in Elementary.  I’m not sure what he’s getting at but it’s not going to be good for Holmes or Watson.  The cases themselves have been pretty intriguing so this season has been a good ride so far.

British TV

Downton Abbey

Yes, they are back and Series 4 is almost over.  Today, there is so much violence on TV and yet we are so unfazed by it.  However, there is one scene this season that was truly terrifying and most excruciatingly awful that I’m mad with the DA writers/producers.  Is it so hard to give these people some happiness?  As for Lady Mary, she gets back on feet but her suitors are less than memorable.  Total bummer.  Oooh Lady Edith.  I have grown to like you since hating you in Series 1 but perhaps spinster maid is all that’s in your cards.  There’s also that other thing which a trip to Switzerland may hopefully solve.  Finally, Cousin Rose has a new suitor: Black Jazz Singer, Jack Ross.  Frankly, I just couldn’t support this couple and not because they’re a multiracial one in the 1920’s.  Despite being defiant, I feel that Rose is with Jack just to get back at her mother.  She’s such a wishy-washy character that really does need to be controlled and Jack doesn’t deserve that.  The season wraps up with the Christmas episode in December and a guest appearance by Shirley MacLaine and Paul Giamatti.

The Paradise

Well ITV had Jeremy Piven in Mr. Selfridge and now BBC’s answer to that is The Paradise.  The Paradise seems like a poor man’s version of Mr. Selfridge.  I just can’t help comparing the characters to those that are in Mr. Selfridge even this is based on Émile Zola’s books.  Even more, I am not a fan of John Moray or Katherine Glendenning so whether they end up marrying or not is of little interest to me.

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