Tag Archives: AMC

FALL IS FUN: New Series for 2011/2012 – Other Networks

So if my original plan had worked out, this fourth Fall Is Fun would have been about CBS. But time has moved quicker than I have and one of my most-anticipated new shows is actually premiering tomorrow, and so what was intended as the fifth and final post, series “other” non-Big-4 networks, has been moved up. (Check out posts 1, 2, and 3 – FOX, ABC, and NBC for more Fall Fun!)

Premieres Tuesday September 13 at 9pm

This is the show that premieres tomorrow. I am not going to get to watch it, and that is making me Very Upset. Because holy crap does this show look exciting.

The most important thing about Ringer is that Sarah Michelle Gellar Is Finally Back On Television. She’s had a good break after her seven-year stint of Being Buffy. And now she is returning and ready to remind us exactly how ridiculously phenomenal she is. Not only do we get one Sarah Michelle Gellar, we get two. DOUBLE THE FUN. And since each twin she is playing seems to come with her own insanely twisted plotline, DOUBLE THE AWESOME. Plus, as if Sarah Michelle Gellarx2 wasn’t enough, the cast also includes Ioan Gruffudd* and Nestor Carbonell.

I’m almost confused that this series is on the CW. It seems way too…legit. Yes, there are certain network-typical elements already obvious in the preview, e.g. way too much designer clothing, way too much glitter, way too much everybody having sex with everybody (and probably a CW-standard horrible pop soundtrack). But so far, all of the characters appear to be adults. And the general theme appears to be rather…dark. And not mopey vampire dark or tweens on drugs dark. Mob hits and druglords and sororicide dark. I almost wonder if Ringer would work on one of the major networks…

Possible production flaws (and by “flaws” I do mean “it’s mostly a matter of taste”) aside, there is one definite upside to this series being on the CW: less ratings anxiety. The CW does not compete for ratings on the same level as the four major networks, so this series doesn’t need to draw quite the same numbers in order to survive. Not that I think finding an audience is going to be a problem, because the show does look pretty damn intriguing and, again, Sarah Michelle Gellar Is Back On Television.

Premieres Wednesday October 5 at 10pm

Apparently, this show is what happens when the creator of Nip/Tuck teams up with the co-creators of Glee. Which, personally, I find incredibly confusing. I never watched Nip/Tuck, largely because when it was at its prime I was way too young for watching it to be even remotely appropriate (but also because depictions of plastic surgery tend to make me want to barf – see: The X-Files S4e6 “Sanguinarium”). I do watch Glee, which is primarily why I find this confusing. I’m hoping the total genre shift is just going to prove that Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy are actually as good as the early days of Glee implied they were. One show writer who doesn’t have to prove a damn thing: Tim Minear. His involvement means I would watch this show purely on principal, nevermind who the other writers or the cast are (Zachary Quinto, Dylan McDermott, Jessica Lange, anyone?).

I say “would” because I don’t know for sure that I’m going to be able to watch this one. I am not a horror movie girl. I will readily admit that I don’t have the stomach for it. Usually, I acknowledge that thriller/slasher/horror films are a prominent feature in the landscape of American-grown entertainment and leave it all well enough alone. Time was, I could have been assured that TV content limitations would keep me moderately safe from being plagued from nightmares but, well, yeah. Those days are gone and you’re allowed to say “shit” on Suits. My curiosity may outweigh my fear at least as far as the pilot episode. The only preview I can find for the show is thirty seconds long and pretty much embodies the term “teaser trailer.”

I GREATLY ENCOURAGE OTHER PEOPLE TO WATCH THIS SHOW. Because it will probably be awesome, and because I will feel less bad about chickening out. And because it may not last very long. (Sorry, Tim Minear but you did choose the Twitter handle @CancelledAgain for a reason…)

Premieres Sunday November 6 at 10pm

I think I am more fascinated by the idea of this show than I will be by the show itself. Post-Civil War America? Awesome. Building of the Transcontinental Railroad? Awesome. Classic Western vibe? Awesome. Cast including Colm Meaney and Tom Noonan? Awesome. And then I remember that I don’t actually like Westerns all that much, nor do I tend to care about AMC shows. When the reality that I’ll need to prioritize and cut some things out of my viewing schedule sinks in, this will be one of the first things to go. So once again, I ENCOURAGE OTHER PEOPLE TO WATCH THIS SHOW. It will probably be good. It’s just not really my taste. (Which may mean, more than anything, that I ought to expand my horizons…)

HOMELAND (Showtime)
Premieres Sunday October 2 at 10pm

When all I knew about this show was that it starred Claire Danes, Mandy Patinkin and Damian Lewis, it was the new series I was most excited about. Now I know it also stars Morena Baccarin, and I know that Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa of 24 (and other awesome things) are involved, and I’ve learned a bit about the premise, and as a result the impossible has happened: I am Even More Excited.

Homeland dissects the chilling possibility of the rescue of a hero turning into the aiding of a terrorist. It combines the oh-so-current flavor of fear of American homeland security with the pulse-pounding excitement of a conspiracy thriller, and tops all that off with the heartbreaking flavor of human ability to cope with the most extreme abuse (mental, emotional, and physical). I sound like a talking point dictionary or something, but seriously: there are some big, scary, brilliant story elements at work here. And some big, scary, even more brilliant production and performance elements putting them together.

I want this show to be The Next Greatest Thing from Showtime. I want it to succeed and flourish and lead to massive amounts of well-deserved recognition for everyone involved. (If this doesn’t end up being as good as I hope/expect it is, I might cry a little bit.)

Bonus Mention:
The Secret Circle (premieres Thursday September 15 at 9pm on the CW). This is based on another series of novels by the same author whose work forms the basis for The Vampire Diaries. So it is probably Not That Bad At All. Plus, it has Thomas Dekker. If there was nothing else good on, I would watch it. Maybe I’ll watch the reruns in a few years or something.

Feel like I missed something? That’s probably because I have absolutely no interest in seeing it. If you want a full Fall/Midseason schedule, I suggest Zap2It’s nifty interactive chart, which will provide you with a nifty little interface and handy links to check out the titles you don’t recognize.

*I never want to have to spell this name Ever Again. OMG BE LESS WELSH.


New Year, New Shows

I’m at least few hours early in most timezones, but Happy 2011!

Instead of New Year’s resolutions, which I don’t make and certainly wouldn’t keep if I did, I’ve made a somewhat prioritized list of new/old series I’m going to attempt to at least introduce myself to over the coming year. God knows how many of these I’ll actually get to, given that I don’t have a particularly great amount of spare time and new shows are popping up all over the place. BUT. These are shows that I am really interested in seeing, so hopefully I’ll make some headway in the coming months.

(As in, new to me…some of these are actually rather dated.)

1. Sherlock

People keep insisting that I need to see this. And given my adoration of anything Sherlock Holmes related, they are correct.

2. Terriers

Somehow I still haven’t seen any of this even though I have been dying to. Catching up in time for new episodes (which, hopefully, there will be) is a priority.

3. The Walking Dead

Another show that is actually new and that I just haven’t quite found the time to start watching yet. But I will. Because, well, zombies!

4. Dexter

I watched the first two episodes of Dexter way back when this whole Melted Brain thing started. But I didn’t get any further, even though it seems like Dexter would be my kind of show. Due to prodding by people and my realization that trying to start Dexter and Six Feet Under in the same weekend might have been a terrible plan, I am going to try again.

5. Twin Peaks

Yes Laura. I need to watch this show and I promise I am going to.

6. True Blood

I don’t actually have a huge amount of interest in True Blood, but I am going to watch it because I am hardly in a position to write an extended treatise on contemporary vampire fiction if I don’t. And I really want to write that.

7. The Closer

Now that this show is entering its final season, I guess it is as good a time as any to start watching. I love Kyra Sedgwick and, after enjoying all the promos so much, my watching and enjoying seems only inevitable.

8. Moonlighting

I reference this show all the time. So I should probably back that up by actually knowing what I’m talking about.

9. Deadwood

Timothy Olyphant. Ian McShane. Brad Dourif. Paula Malcolmson. Late 1880s. Outlaws. Why haven’t I seen this yet?

10. Star Trek: The Next Generation

Watching this series will probably be an on-going effort, and it is not much of a priority. But I know I have seen a few episodes that I have really loved, so there must be more. And, well, it’s Star Trek. That’s pretty much reason enough.

11. Damages

I do not like legal shows as a general rule. But there are a couple exceptions, and I’m guessing the phenomenal acting this series is reputed for will make this one of those exceptions.

12. Jericho

This is just one of those low-priority, minimal-investment sci-fi series from the past decade that I feel like I should watch, just to be able to say I have.

(As in, shows I say that I watch but that I am actually reeeeeally far behind on.)

1. Chuck


2. Fringe

I watched the pilot of this show when it aired, but for some reason I have never kept up with it. And now I am so far behind it is depressing. But everything I hear says that the show has only gotten more and more awesome, so it is time to make an effort to get with it.

3. Justified

…I actually only watched the pilot and half of the next episode. So yeah. Should probably rectify that, stat.

4. The Vampire Diaries

See: my reasons for starting True Blood. Also, I want to see if all the plotlines I was expecting after S1 are actually coming to be. (I’m pretty sure they are.)

5. Lie to Me

I’ve been told that, after a rather lackluster first season and a half, this show has gotten quite good. I want to see if that’s true.

6. Supernatural

Catching up on this show is actually not a huge priority. I have seen S1, S2, and most of S3. Most likely I will wait until the series ends and consecutive reruns start on TNT.

…wow. That is a lot more shows than I thought it was. I guess we’ll see how this all goes. My brain may actually melt. Yikes.

Merry Christmas Special

I did not grow up watching all those stop-motion animation Christmas television movie specials that are actually horrible but no-one wants to say so because they grew up with them and have thus assigned a huge amount of sentimental value. ALSO, my family has never been big on Christmas movies. I think I’ve seen It’s A Wonderful Life once, ever. Likewise Miracle on 34th Street until last night when channel flipping landed me on AMC. White Christmas is a different story because it’s an early-fifties era musical and that was basically my childhood. But I digress. Point is, I don’t watch real Christmas specials.

Unluckily for me, television series really like to make their own special holiday episodes.

Luckily for all of us, this gives me review fodder.

So, without further ado, a quick review of four of this year’s Christmas Special Episodes.

Human Target: “The Other Side of the Mall”

Dear Human Target,

If you’re going to do a Christmas episode, maybe don’t revolve the whole thing around how much the main character hates Christmas. It kind of ruins things. It’s bad enough to do a holiday-themed episode. You could at least make an effort to get into the spirit a little. Funny as it is to send the team down light-vomited suburban holiday lane to the tune of “Where are we?” “Hell.”, the whole thing just ends up lame. Also, semi-metal rock n’ roll riff Christmas carols? You have ruined ‘God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen Forever’…and it wasn’t that good to begin with. Thanks for that.

Melted Brain

Best quotes: “Wow. You’re an excellent whistler.” and “You are what we in the custodial arts like to call…a douche.”

Glee: “A Very Glee Christmas”

My expectations for this episode were really low, so I guess you could say they’ve been fulfilled. Basically, I found the lack of inspiration embarrassing. Least original Christmas special ever. And all the more disappointing because Glee is capable of doing better when it actually tries. But not this year. Glee seems to be having some major writing problems this year and is getting worse by the episode and I could go on, but that’s not really the point right now. So, let me break this review down into pros and cons…and I’ll try to come up with an even number of each, because it’s only fair:

1) Brittany still believes in Santa Claus: Touche, Glee. If there is anything to make me at least accept a Christmassy Christmas special filled with Christmassy Christmas spirit…Brittany believing in Santa and the whole club teaming up to make her time magical is it. AWWWWWWWW.
2) Coach Beiste: This was actually just a good episode thing in general. I’m really pleased she’s becoming incorporated into the show in general. Dot Jones is a much better element than Coach Tanaka (Peter Gallagher) ever was. And the Arty-slash-Brittany gift? AWWWWWWWW.
3) Baby It’s Cold Outside: On behalf of fangirls everywhere, thank you. I don’t care that the script had to take a completely ridiculous and unnecessary side trip. I will bet you any amount of money this is the most popular part of the episode. (But I still feel the need to remark: Chris Colfer singing the low part in a duet with another dude is frickin’ weird.)

Island of Misfit Toys: Great echo back to the early days…but so saccharine I wanted to cry.

1) The Jew Problem: Puck decorating a Christmas tree? JEWFAIL. Rachel singing not just one, but two Christmas numbers? JEWFAIL. The fact that the Glee Club has two Jews very obsessed with being Jewish could have been a jumping off point for making a Christmas episode with some actual valuable social commentary the like of which Glee supposedly is still capable of. But NO. No. Instead let’s just ignore that. Because Christmas is too commercially dominant for us to do anything else. I mean, it’s not as if there are any Jews in showbiz or anything.
2) The Sue plot: I am embarrassed by how lame this was. Sue as the Grinch. Really. Wow. Let’s talk about low-hanging fruit from the obvious tree.
3) The end: And of course, how else could this episode possibly have ended but with a hair joke. Wow. Merry fucking Christmas to you too, Glee. Motherfuckers.

Best quotes: “This year, Glee Club’s going full-Santa *CRAZYEYES*” and Schue’s ideas for Sue-mas gifts (1 – robot dog, 2 – a soul)

Leverage: “The Ho Ho Ho Job”

Honestly, I don’t have a whole lot to say about this episode. It just wasn’t that noteworthy. It was an average episode of Leverage, but with Santa. And not even very much Santa. Yes, yes, Parker’s obsession with Christmas was kind of cute fun. But that was about it. Christmas in the mall. Wa. Hoo.

Eureka: “O Little Town”

The whole “telling a tale of Christmas past” is a bit heavy-handed. BUT, Eureka is beyond tongue-in-cheek enough to handle it. The episode works because it’s a totally standard episode of Eureka…it just happens to take place during Christmas. We get Taggart back, which is awesome. There is nothing funnier than a gangly Australian trying to explain Santa Claus with science. Except for maybe  an ENORMOUS ROLLING CHRISTMAS BALL ORNAMENT. (YESSS.) The can of Christmas cheer was excessively creepy, but the episode ended on not just the right key, but the right note exactly. Kids who go “That’s way too sappy…but good story” is the perfect sappy holiday touch that doesn’t make the audience want to die. And, final note: I usually don’t approve of changing of credits/opener to incorporate holiday decor, but Sheriff Carter in an elf/Santa/whatever-that-was costume? Admittedly pretty hysterical

Best quotes: “Tell me about it. I had to ice my hot toddies.”



Merry Christmas from Melted Brain.

This Week 9/20 to 9/26

DID YOU KNOW: It is a year later and Melted Brain still exists.

The fact that this month has kind of gotten away from me aside, THIS THING HAS STAYED ALIVE. FOR A YEAR. That is CRAZY.

All the more reason why this week, I am getting with the program and doing stuff! Come rain or shine or sleet or snow or thunder or nuclear holocaust!

8pm – House on FOX (season premiere!)
8pm – Chuck on NBC (season premiere!)
9pm – Lone Star on FOX (series pilot!)
9pm – The Event on NBC (series pilot!)
10pm – Castle on ABC (season premiere!)
10pm – Chase on NBC (series pilot!)
10pm – Hawaii Five-0 on CBS (series pilot!)

Don’t ask what I’m going to do. I really am not sure.

8pm – NCIS on CBS (season premiere!)
8pm – Glee on FOX (season premiere!)
9pm – NCIS: Los Angeles on CBS (2-hour season premiere!)
9pm – Raising Hope on FOX (series pilot!)
9:30pm – Running Wilde on FOX (series pilot!)
10pm – Detroit 1-8-7 on ABC (series pilot!)

8pm – Undercovers on NBC (series pilot!)
10pm – The Whole Truth on ABC (series pilot!)
10pm – The Defenders on CBS (series pilot!)
10pm – Terriers on FX

I didn’t realize that The Whole Truth and The Defenders were time-slot buddies. That’s interesting.

8pm – My Generation on ABC (series pilot!)
8pm – Bones on FOX (season premiere!)
8pm – The Vampire Diaries on the CW
8:30pm – Shit My Dad Says on CBS (series pilot!)
9pm – Nikita on the CW
9pm – Fringe on FOX (season premiere!)
9pm – Project Runway on Lifetime

9pm – CSI: NY on CBS (season premiere!)
9pm – The Good Guys on FOX (midseason return!)
1opm – Outlaw on NBC (series pilot!)
10pm – Blue Bloods on CBS (series pilot!)
10pm – Haven on SyFy

11:30pm – Saturday Night Live (Amy Poehler & Katy Perry) on NBC (season premiere!)

9pm – Rubicon on AMC

Now that I’m looking at this schedule, it is really scary.

Working my ass off, ho!

Enjoy your week.

This Week 9/5 to 9/12


9pm – Rubicon on AMC
9pm – Leverage on TNT (season finale!)

Please note, the exclamation point after the ‘season finale’ after Leverage actually indicates despair, not excitement.

8:30pm – CBS Fall Preview on CBS (special)
9pm – Friday Night Lights on ABC Family (network premiere!/pilot!)
10pm – Rizzoli & Isles on TNT

I have never watched Friday Night Lights. I don’t know that I would like it. But ABC Family is airing the whole series starting anew, so here’s an opportunity.

9pm – White Collar on USA
10pm – Covert Affairs on USA

9pm – Dark Blue on TNT (2 hours!)
10pm – Terriers on FX

I neglected to mention Terriers in my Fall TV preview post (reason: I didn’t know slash forgot it existed). Terriers is, to the best of my opinion, a sort of unconventional cop show of the general FX variety – so, a wacky mix of hicks and major criminals. That part falls pretty well under the take-it-or-leave it umbrella. The reason you should watch Terriers is, it stars Donal Logue (lately of Life)! He’s a funny man. Still confused? Understandable. See a preview here.

8pm – The Vampire Diaries on the CW (season premiere!)
9pm – Nikita on the CW (pilot!)
9pm – Project Runway on Lifetime

I guess my foray into actually watching the CW is going to have to wait; I’ve signed away all my Thursday nights for September to Doing Real Things. But I will still make sure to watch these in a timely fashion! (And also finally get around to seeing The Vampire Diaries‘ S1 finale…)

9pm – Eureka on SyFy
10pm – Haven on SyFy


Nothing new is airing.

9pm – Rubicon on AMC
9pm – 2010 Video Music Awards on MTV/MTV2

What you can expect from me this week:

  • Review of Leverage season finale/season as a whole
  • Review of Nikita
  • Review of Terriers
  • special post of some variety

Emmy Winners 2010

Yeah, I kinda missed the ball on this one. But hey. This is the only way I manage to check for myself, and besides: this year was kind of exciting. As in, 30 Rock didn’t win everything, which is fantastic. (Clearly I am not a devotee.)

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jim Parsons as “Sheldon Cooper” in The Big Bang Theory
I really could not be more excited or delighted by any other outcome (yes, including a Matt Morrison win).

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Edie Falco as “Jackie Peyton” in Nurse Jackie
Didn’t really have too much care about this category this year. But Tina Fey didn’t win, so that’s fun and different.

Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Bryan Cranston as “Walter White” in Breaking Bad
I was rooting for Matthew Fox or (as usual) Michael C. Hall. But this is juuuuuust fine too.

Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Kyra Sedgwick as “Deputy Chief Brenda Johnson” in The Closer
Congratulations! (I really didn’t care about this category this year…)

Comedy Series: Modern Family
Glee didn’t win?! OUTRAGE! SCANDAL! …just kidding. Modern Family is definitely deserving. Grudgingly as I admit it. Maybe next year.

Drama Series: Mad Men
God DAMN it. STOP.

Reality Competition Series: Top Chef

Variety/Music/Comedy Series: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Aw YEAH. Eight years in a row!

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Eric Stonestreet as “Cameron Tucker” in Modern Family
Um, yay for you. I wanted Chris Colfer or NPH.

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Jane Lynch as “Sue Sylvester” in Glee

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Aaron Paul as “Jesse Pinkman” in Breaking Bad
Twas a good night for the Breaking Bad men.

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Archie Panjabi as “Kalinda Sharma” in The Good Wife

Writing for a Comedy Series: Modern Family
Oh please don’t mean that now Modern Family (instead of 30 Rock) is just going to sweep the comedy series Emmys and leave destruction in its wake.

Writing for a Drama Series: Mad Men

Writing for a Variety/Music/Comedy Series: The Colbert Report
Works for me. Not my favorite episode of the season, but there was a lot of really good writing this year so yay.

This Week 8/2 to 8/8

So there’s this thing called “Shark Week” you may have heard of…

8pm – Lie to Me on FOX
9pm – The Good Guys on FOX
10pm – Rizzoli & Isles on TNT

8pm – Pretty Little Liars on ABC Family
9pm – Warehouse 13 on SyFy
9pm – White Collar on USA
10pm – Covert Affairs on USA
10pm – Memphis Beat on TNT

I do not watch Warehouse 13. But I mentioned it just so that I could share with y’all the whispered plan for a W13Eureka crossover.

8pm – So You Think You Can Dance (Top 4) on FOX
9pm – Dark Blue (2-hour season premiere!) on TNT

Is it just me, or is there something inherently silly about airing the movie Next twice in a row? Way to go, FX.

9pm – So You Think You Can Dance (results) on FOX
9pm – Moonlight on the CW
9pm – Project Runway on Lifetime
9pm – Burn Notice on USA

Wait, when did a new season of Project Runway start? (And, I ask as I do every week, why does everything air at 9pm on Thursday?)

9pm – Eureka on SyFy
10pm – Haven on SyFy

8pm – Persons Unknown on NBC

9pm – Rubicon on AMC
9pm – Leverage on TNT
9pm – Scoundrels on ABC
10pm – The Gates on ABC

I’m actually going to do stuff this week, I promise! And by “things” I mean I will, at the very least, be watching and reviewing Dark Blue. So excited for that show! I was terrified it was going to get cancelled after the first season but NO! SAVED! And now Tricia Helfer has joined the cast! Looking forward to the increased sexy awesome? Oh yes.

Also, going to look into Rubicon and catch up on Persons Unknown, Eureka, and Haven. That last one just because I want to give it another chance before giving up entirely. (Speaking of giving up entirely, folks may notice the absence of Rookie Blue from this week’s schedule. I watched five minutes of the pilot and wanted to die so that was the end of that.)

Enjoy your week.

The Glades: the crimes are boring, the lead is irritating, the secondary characters are boring, and the non-procedural part of the plot is like a Harlequin novel but without any sexiness. Sorry A&E but the truth is, this is just a big unhot mess of epic fail

Golden Globes Results!

I don’t know what it was, but for some reason this year’s Golden Globes were (almost completely) AMAZING in terms of the television winners!


Best Drama Series: Mad Men (I’m sure you’re all shocked.)

Best Actress, Drama Series: Julianna Marguilies of The Good Wife (I am actually psyched about this, if for no better reason than it is great to have the winner not be Glenn Close or Kyra Sedgwick.)

Best Actor, Drama Series: Michael C. Hall of Dexter (YES YES YES YES YES YES OMG YES!!!!!)

Best Comedy or Musical Series: Glee (YESSSSSSS!!!)

Best Actress, Comedy or Musical Series: Toni Colette of United States of Tara (I have no feelings about this either way.)

Best Actor, Comedy or Musical Series: Alec Baldwin of 30 Rock (SOMEDAY his winning streak will end. I hope.)

Best Supporting Actress: Chloe Sevigny of Big Love (It has nothing to do with Chloe Sevigny herself, but I am SO DISAPPOINTED that Jane Lynch didn’t win.)

Best Supporting Actor: John Lithgow of Dexter (Again, a bit disappointed – because it isn’t NPH – but it’s John Lithgow, so I’m cool.)

So, in conclusion, Julianna Marguilies!, Michael C. Hall!!! GLEE!!!! Way to go, Golden Globes (also for your good choices in the movie categories). A solid start for awards season, I’d say.

First (And Second) Looks

It’s been a good weekend for my television brain. I have the full first seasons of THREE new series at my disposal, so it’s been all sorts of fun for me. Less so for anyone else in the house who wanted to use the television. I don’t know that I love any of these three series quite yet, but I’ve seen two episodes of each so far and there’s some definite potential.

Mad Men

To be absolutely honest, this is not the first time I’ve seen any of Mad Men, but it’s been long enough that I barely remembered anything. So it’s sort of like I have fresh eyes on it.

The thing about this show is that it’s so stylized, I can’t quite tell what sort of substance it has. My obsession with January Jones’ and Christina Hendricks’ costumes aside, there aren’t many things that have really gripped me so far. Watching a couple episodes with my dad, who lived through this period and remembers it, added an extra angle of amusement. The general sixties-ness is certainly interesting (and entertaining). And, because I am a devotee of all things Joss Whedon, it’s a treat to see a slightly more grown up Vincent Kartheiser.

As I said, the production value of Mad Men is phenomenal – you don’t need to look any further than the opening credits to get a sense of just how snazzy it all is. And the acting is excellent too. The multiple actor Emmy nominations Mad Men has earned are evidently well-deserved even after just two episodes. And, the writing is certainly funny enough.

But, when all is said and done, I’m having a really hard time a) connecting emotionally with any of the characters and b) understanding exactly what it is about this show that everyone (read: the Emmy academy) loves so damn much. I may keep watching just out of a stubborn desire to try and figure that out.


I have a huge crush on Michael C. Hall now. The man is fucking amazing and I want his brain/talent/babies.


Dexter is…interesting. Of the three shows, I feel like I have the least of a grip on this one. It’s not quite a procedural, but it’s not quite a serialized character drama. This is, again, analysis based on only two episodes, but my immediate reaction to this show is not confusion, necessarily, but something very much like it (and I can’t think of a more apt word at the moment).

The style that Dexter is written and shot in is peculiar and difficult to connect to. It’s like hectic in slow motion. The characters are just as difficult to pin down, because all of them are just so maladjusted to life in the real world. After the first episode of this I was wondering what the writers/producers were smoking when they came up with the whole concept. An episode later, though, I feel like I might be seeing the light. The world of Dexter is the world of Dexter. That is, the show is set not in Miami, but in Miami through the eyes of a serial killer. He is twisted, so everything is twisted. I’ll need to see a few more episodes to see whether that understanding is proof that I’m more insightful than I give myself credit for or proof that I’m just an intellectual elitist bullshitter with an overacting imagination. But I’m hoping it’s the former. I’ll feel so much smarter that way, and I’ll have so much respect for the creators of Dexter.

I honestly couldn’t tell you if I like this show or not. I do not know. What I do know, is that even if I hated the show I would watch it. Because Michael C. Hall is that good and I am that one-track-minded.

(Another great thing about this show – it’s gross! My favorite! A body drained of blood? Mmmmmm. Good times.)

Six Feet Under

…speaking of my undying fangirllove for Michael C. Hall…

Six Feet Under is by far my favorite of these three shows. And not just because the fictional ads for mortuary products in the pilot are the most marvelously disturing-but-hilarious things of all time. This show is the one of the three that really starts out with any sort of heart and soul.

I’ve heard some very disparate testimonies about this show. One friend calls it her favorite show of all time. My aunt gripes about how she doesn’t like any of the characters. So while I definitely didn’t switch on the pilot with a totally open and unaffected view, I feel like I’m more or less unswayed by any of the viewpoints I’ve heard.

My gut reaction to Six Feet Under is comprised mostly of delight. I love the characters for their awfulness. Peter Krause, the lead, manages to simultaneously ooze undeniable charm and bug the shit out of me. Michael C. Hall…well, he’s just damn good. And part of a homosexual relationship (additional emphasis on the sexual) which is a sure way to get my support – because most people just won’t do that on television, stage, or anywhere else and it’s marvelous when they do. Lauren Ambrose is heartfelt and hilarious. And I can’t think of any way someone could not love Freddy Rodriguez’s character. The only member of the cast I have absolutely no enjoyment in is Rachel Griffiths and her character Brenda. She just doesn’t do it for me.

As a whole, though, the show at two episodes down is remarkably well put together. Normally I’d have no interest in a show that is entirely about touchy-feely family/personal interrelationships. Usually I look for sci-fi or paranormal weirdness to bail me out. But dead people work too. Because they are gross. I get the feeling that after watching this show for a long enough period of time I’m going to start considering throwing myself into a volcano when I’m about to die just so no-one has to deal with my facial reconstruction or seeping fluids.

Since I have DVDs at my disposal and don’t have to mess with that complicated finding-episodes-online business, I am resolved to watch at least the entire first season of all three of these shows. And I will. Unless they, for some reason, irritate me so much that I just can’t stand it and have to stop. I have high hopes for my enjoyment of both Six Feet Under and Dexter, and I guess we’ll see how Mad Men fares.

I think the best part of all of it, though, is that these are non-broadcast shows so the characters/writers don’t have to PC-ify all their dialogue. People are allowed to swear and it’s amazing…and I am such a twelve-year-old boy. Wow.