January 22, 2010

TV Report Card: Week of January 17, 2010

Here is this week's TV Report Card:

Chuck: "Chuck Versus Operation Awesome"

This week's Chuck could very well have been the best of the series because it literally had it all.  We had some great LOL moments (Awesome's lie), some good mythology (The Ring is becoming more pronounced), decent stunt casting (Angie Harmon as the Ring baddie, and Brandon Routh as the new Super Spy), heartwarming family stuff (the dinner), and some subtle Chuck and Sarah moments.  My only real beef with Chuck so far is we're getting everything thrown at us early on.  Pretty much every big name guest star has been or will be in the first five episodes.  I like how the shorter episode order condenses the story, but they have to save something for the long haul.  I also wanted Angie Harmon's character to stick around a little bit longer, and for the Awesome storyarc to last a few more episodes.


How I Met Your Mother: "Jenkins"

It official, Marshall and Lily cannot be saved on HIMYM because we got yet another boring episode with them as the A-plot.  Marshall is not happy being the "reacher" to Lily's "settler", so he tries to make her jealous by flaunting a beautiful co-worker (Amanda Peet) in front of her.  Instead of Lily getting jealous, she just continues to belittle Marshall like she's done ever since they got married.  The B-plot

was about Robin becoming a college drinking game because she say, "but, um" a lot.  Very little laughs with the exception of Barney and Ted playing said drinking game.  I'm also starting to not like Robin as a character.  She's too wrapped up in her own hotness and "fame" that she's becoming off-putting. Another clunker from the HIMYM gang.


The Big Bang Theory: "The Bozeman Reaction"

This week also gave us a rare subpar The Big Bang Theory.  The episode focused on Sheldon and Leonard getting robbed, and Sheldon's overreaction to the event which leads him to leave Pasadena for Bozeman, MT.  Usually, a Sheldon heavy episode is good for a few good laughs, but not this time around.  Also, seeing Leonard and Penny making out is just icky.  Plus, Leonard has become kind of a jerk since becoming Penny's boyfriend.  Sure, Sheldon is hard to handle sometimes, but Leonard's annoyance with how Sheldon was reacting to a traumatic event seemed cold.  For once, I actually felt bad for Shelly.


Castle: "Sucker Punch"

Not only did we get one of the best (if not the best) episodes of Chuck on Monday night, but we also got the best episode of Castle.  This week's episode focused on the biggest storyarc of the show, the death of Beckett's mother.  We get some answers, but even more questions which could drive the show for a long time (hopefully).  Also, we finally get to see Beckett tell Castle how much she needs him around.  Pretty much the best episode of any TV show around.  Too bad most people were watching that horrible CSI: Miami.


Scrubs: "Our True Lies"

This season of Scrubs is still too hit or miss for me.  "Our True Lies" did a good job at shedding some light on the pressure that med students face with some humor, but the Turk B-plot just felt tacked on and unnecessary.  The Denise/Drew relationship has been interesting to watch, but it feels too safe and cliche.  The biggest bright spot of this season has been watching Turk and Denise become work friends due to J.D.'s absence.  Other than that, most of the recent episodes have been forgettable.


Better Off Ted: "Lust in Translation

The hit or miss syndrome also afflicts ABC's other Wednesday night comedy because this week's BOT didn't have has many LOL moments as some of the past weeks. Veridian is working with a German group, and Ted becomes smitten with of them, but there is a language barrier.  Phil and Lem have been working on a device that translates conversations for people.  The German wants to use the translators to prove that their relationship is not just physical, but the catch is the devices use Phil's voice, and hilarity ensues.  It's just funny watching Ted react to a beautiful woman talking dirty to him in Phil's voice.  The B-plot about Linda and Veronica competing by throwing bagels into an air conditioner vent was not as funny.


White Collar: "Hard Sell"

White Collar had its winter premiere, and it pretty much picked up where the fall finale left off.  Also, it was pretty much a ripoff of Boiler Room and Wall Street.  Neal starts to think that Peter is the one that has Kate thanks to a picture in Peter's house.  The audience is told that Peter did talk to Kate, but he did it to protect Neal.  "Hard Sell" was OK, but I think that something bigger is going on, and Peter really is playing Neal.  While White Collar is fun, and I'm happy for any Chuck alum, the show still hasn't wowed me like Leverage, but it's still one of USA's best.


Leverage: "The Bottle Job"

One of the biggest changes that occurred during Season 2 of Leverage was moving the Crew's base of operations from Los Angeles to Boston (even though they film in one of my old stomping grounds, Portland, OR).  So far this shift has been a brilliant move because "Boston" has given way to better stories (but less jokes) than LA did, such as this week's "Bottle Job".  The Crew has to con an Irish loan shark in order to get back a local pub that is near and dear to Nate, and they end up pulling off two big jobs with very little prep time.  Of course this episode had every Irish stereotype in the book, but it was still fun to watch without being too offensive.  "Bottle" may not have been one of Leverage's best outings, but it was still entertaining as hell.


Bones: "The Proof in the Pudding"

Apparently, Bones is moving from a cop procedural to a show about aliens and conspiracies because this week's case revolved around the Squints examining the remains that may or may not belong to JFK.  The case was mediocre at best, but we did get some great Cam and Booth moments, and my man crush on David Boreanaz only intensified.



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