Tag Archives: Persons Unknown

This Week 8/2 to 8/8

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

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

TUESDAY:
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.

WEDNESDAY:
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.

THURSDAY:
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?)

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

SATURDAY:
8pm – Persons Unknown on NBC

SUNDAY:
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
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“The Truth” is Waaaaay Out There

In view of the most recent episode, I think it may be fairly said that Persons Unknown is getting much more interesting – which is crazy. I mean, it seems that the storyline has now passed through the WTF Let’s Confuse Everyone All The Time Phase and begun a more concentrated unraveling of the narrative. You’d think, in light of that trend, things would be getting a little less insane now that the show has started moving somewhat purposefully.

Well, apparently not.

Not that the continuing insanity is a bad thing.

Increased focus is definitely helping the Renbe side of the plot. I mean, I can’t say I was a huge fan of the sweeping romantic gesture moment in the taxi, nor of Kat’s terrible Italian accent, and definitely not of the Italian Armani mobsters who are, like, reincarnated Montagues or something. But Renbe getting shot at repeatedly, handled roughly by considerably handsomer-than-him thugs, and narrowly escaping being blown up? That is the sort of story advancement I can get behind. Especially since he’s actually made progress for once and gotten ahold of Joe’s photo (and hopefully some more information) from Ambassador Fairchild’s office. Progress? A few answers (or at least some more specific questions) coming soon? We can only hope so.

Speaking of Joe: what a bummer of an episode for him. I never ever want antifreeze poisoning, especially if downing four or six ounces of vodka in one go is the best cure. And as if all that wasn’t enough, now everyone has turned against him. Except for Tom, who is my favorite when he’s being an asshole, but who I find somewhat horrifying when he goes into I’m Here For Ya, Buddy mode.

But Joe isn’t really the big news from Creepyville for this week. Neither is Mr. Blackham’s decision to become a hammer-happy rebel.

The big news? ERIKA IS FREAKING PSYCHOTIC.

…yeah, yeah, I realize I probably should have expected something of this nature, given she was a death row inmate and all. But the Persons Unknown writing team is tricky! They ended the previous episode on that note of Aww Erika = Sad Mommy and Aww Erika = Janet Ally, and then they opened “The Truth” on a note of Yay Erika = Blackham Tormenter (a position everyone can get behind), the Haha Bacon Moment, and the ultimate distraction of Oh Snap Lesbians!*

So forgive me for not seeing this whole ERIKA IS PSYCHO thing coming and for finding the very end of the episode shocking. I don’t mean the part where Erika basically forced Joe to confess his snitch status by threatening to withhold the vodka. I don’t mean the fact that she turned out to be responsible for the poisoning – I totally called that, actually. The shock moment came when she finished dumping the antifreeze down the sink and looked into the mirror and addressed Janet and was COMPLETELY INSANE.** Honest to god, tiny little Kandyse McClure is scaring the crap out of me on this show.

Even if we set my terror of her psycho-eyes aside for the moment, this is a scary development. Because she managed to poison Joe without Tom seeing her (at least I presume so; Tom is a tricky bastard so the whole sympathy routine could have been faked, I guess – and I almost hope it was). Plus, she’s figured out faster than everyone else stuck in town how to work the place. Since I doubt she is in on the conspiracy (she’s classified the same way as Janet according to Tom’s observation screens last episode), this is an excellent and rather chilling twist.

I am way excited to see what happens next.

*Seriously, what is it with this show and implied female homosexuality? First Tori and Moira (think about it! – it happened!) and now this. I mean, cool, I guess. But I’m sorta starting to suspect that someone on the writing/production team might have been watching all those female prison movies with Tom. Just sayin’.

**You know how I was talking about the Night Manager’s vague similarity to Norman Bates? Yeah. Cross that out. Erika’s psycho grin is very nearly on a level with the last onscreen moments of Psycho.

This Week 7/19 to 7/25

Aw man, I was so good at things the beginning of last week we just knew it couldn’t carry over to the weekend/a more timely This Week.

…in my defense, I had a bummer of a cold and was basically just zombie-ing my way through daily necessities and then sleeping.

ANYWAY.

This is what’s up coming up:

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

And FX is airing 27 Dresses. Again. I don’t know why they keep doing that. (I also don’t know why that movie has a crack-like grasp on my mind.)

TUESDAY:
8pm – Pretty Little Liars on ABC Family
9pm – White Collar on USA
10pm – Covert Affairs on USA
10pm – Memphis Beat on TNT

Shows that keep showing up on this schedule only because I haven’t seen them yet and intend to at some point, sorta: Pretty Little Liars and Memphis Beat.

WEDNESDAY:
8pm – So You Think You Can Dance on FOX

Anyone who can explain to me why HawthoRNe is airing on TBS (you know, the comedy network) wins a cookie.

THURSDAY:
9pm – Rookie Blue on ABC
9pm – So You Think You Can Dance (results) on FOX
9pm – Moonlight on the CW
9pm – Burn Notice on USA

Also airing, re-run of Glee “Mash-Up.”

FRIDAY:
10pm – Haven on SyFy

SATURDAY:
7pm – Buffy the Vampire Slayer on VH1
8pm – The Bridge on ABC
8pm – Persons Unknown on NBC

That is the original 1992 Buffy movie. It is hysterical and if you have ever seen Buffy the series (especially if you liked it), you should watch this movie. Also, I have no idea what The Bridge is, but it seems somewhat intriguing.

SUNDAY:
9pm – Leverage on TNT
9pm – Scoundrels on ABC
10pm – The Gates on ABC

I think that’s it for this week. No specific Melted Brain goals – just tuning back in to Haven, Covert Affairs, Rizzoli & Isles, and Persons Unknown and giving them some take-two consideration.

Enjoy your seven-day period!

This Week 7/12 to 7/18

I caught up on some stuff! Not a lot, but some!

Tonight:
8pm – Lie to Me on FOX
9pm – The Good Guys on FOX
10pm – Rizzoli & Isles (series pilot!) on TNT

TUESDAY:
8pm – Pretty Little Liars on ABC Family
9pm – White Collar (season premiere!) on USA
10pm – Cover Affairs (series pilot!) on USA
10pm – Memphis Beat on TNT

WEDNESDAY:
8pm – So You Think You Can Dance on FOX

THURSDAY:
9pm – Rookie Blue on ABC
9pm – So You Think You Can Dance (results) on FOX
9pm – Moonlight on the CW
9pm – Burn Notice on USA

FRIDAY:

Nothing new is airing.

SATURDAY:
8pm – Persons Unknown on NBC

SUNDAY:
9pm – Leverage on TNT
9pm – Scoundrels on ABC
10pm – The Gates on ABC

Goal for this week: watch and review the premieres of Rizzoli & Isles and Covert Affairs. I’d like to do a lot more. But I could realistically actually accomplish this. Anything more is just a bonus for everyone!

Enjoy your week!

P.U. is an Unfortunate Set of Initials

Thankfully, it is not an apt descriptor. Persons Unknown, it turns out, is awesome.

For those of you who don’t know what it is about (and by that I actually mean “those of you who have not seen it yet” because honestly I don’t think anyone is quite sure what it’s about yet), Persons Unknown chronicles the experiences of a group of strangers who get kidnapped and wake up in a hotel in a deserted but fully functional town in the middle of nowhere. They keep trying to escape; weird stuff keeps happening.

Yes, yes. It does sound rather like it’s trying to be the new Lost, doesn’t it?

That was certainly my feeling for the first episode or two. I even had this whole chart worked out showing which characters from Persons Unknown corresponded to which characters from Lost – Janet = Kate/Claire, Joe = Jack*, Tori = Shannon and so on.

I was being very unfair, it turns out.

It is not true that Persons Unknown is a poor knock-off of Lost; it is too good to be just that. Bu t is definitely true that Persons Unknown comes from the same family line of shows as Lost, an ancestry with roots in The X-Files and even The Twilight Zone. This means that Persons Unknown has quite the legacy to uphold. And I think it could be capable of doing so, given half a chance.

As I’ve said, it’s tough to say exactly what sort of show Persons Unknown is or what it is about because it is just so mysterious. And very well done. The art of suspense has been somewhat lost since the dawn of high-quality CGI. Now that special effects are in their hey-day, show (and movie) producers have gotten lazy. They pile on the guts and gore and highly realistic computer images and decide that is enough to scare people. It is not. Name one show that started in the last decade that has been halfway as scary as some of those earlier, exceptionally creepy episodes of The X-Files. That show was done entirely via camera work and atmosphere, and Persons Unknown has taken a page out of its book.

Perhaps it’s because of a low budget, but the creep-factor of Persons Unknown is due almost entirely to the excellently mood-setting score (music is almost always in the background and so subtly effective you almost don’t notice) and the camera work/film editing. Everything is tinted in slightly corpse-like colors. And the observational cameras are about the scariest thing ever, especially since they are everywhere. The set is creepy too, but only because it is empty and any empty town is automatically really creepy – otherwise, it is pretty unremarkable (actually, it looks a lot like the town from Gilmore Girls). Long story short, Persons Unknown has suspense down to an art and that is probably my absolute favorite thing about it. I like it when things scare me to death without blood, guts, and bad masks jumping out of nowhere.

Another element of Persons Unknown that I’m greatly enjoying is the cast of characters. It took me awhile to warm up to them – again, the initial Lost similarities – but now that they’ve been more fully established, I’m starting to really appreciate them. Female characters usually get the short end of the interesting-and-creative stick. I usually hate the lead female protagonist with a burning passion. But I’m actually sort of fond of Janet (Daisy Betts), because she’s not just the whiny mother type – she’s kind of a bad ass. The supporting females, Tori (Kate Lang Johnson) and Moira (Tina Holmes) are the typical mix of occasionally well-performed and written but mostly unwritten. Kat (Lola Glaudini),is delightfully bitchy and gets the best one-liners in the show** Janet’s mother (Lee Purcell) is approximately the most terrifying woman ever. And new addition Erica, is so terrifyingly well-performed I’ve had to re-evaluate my previously low opinion of Kandyse McClure.

The male characters are intriguing enough, I suppose. There was a definite casting-fail in terms of the two “sexy” males. Reporter Mark Renbe (Gerald Kyd) is totally unattractive and only got somewhat interesting three episodes in when we found out he was Such A Terrible Person. As for the aforementioned Joe (Jason Wiles)…well, actually, he’s a lot more intriguing now that it’s been revealed that he is in on the conspiracy(?) behind the kidnap of these people. He has a personality now! He has the potential to become rather awesome. We’ll see if he lives up to it. For now though, my favorite male character is McNair (Chadwick Boseman) because he is a) the character with useful skills and b) the hot one. Close second: the Night Manager (Andy Greenfield), a hilarious cross between Norman Bates from Psycho and Kenneth Parcell of 30 Rock.

What makes Persons Unknown stand out from not only Lost but from every other show on air is the fact that it is completely batshit. It is totally weird and absolutely unpredictable. It is awesome. The lack of storyline is a little frustrating when I get a moment to think about it. But I get continually distracted by all the insanity. My theory is that the writers just have a hat filled with random ideas (“dig an escape tunnel” “build a signal fire” “drop gas masks out of the sky” “give Character A a gun and tell them to kill Character B” “reveal that Character X killed his wife” “reveal that Character Y died prior to appearing in town”) and they draw out three or four of those per episode. Some of these ideas are stupider than others. Some of them are rather ingenious. Either way, Persons Unknown is worth watching just to see what the hell happens.

Don’t misunderstand, there is a plot to Persons Unknown. We don’t know much about it – I’m not even sure why the show is called Persons Unknown. But the story seems to have something to do with psychological experimentation, a training program for…something, survival of the fittest, and some sort of parent-driven conspiracy. Now that Tom ( ) has been given a name and some screen time, things seem to be progressing.

The ratings for Persons Unknown have been far from outstanding. Bad enough, in fact, that the show has now been moved to Saturdays at 8pm. But, supposedly it is intended as a 13-episode miniseries, so it just might make it all the way through and answer all the looming questions. In any case it’ll be released on DVD. Which is good. Because I want to see it all.

If you haven’t been watching Persons Unknown, I definitely suggest you start. Most of the episodes are still on Hulu (and I’m sure you can find the ones that aren’t without too much trouble). It is definitely worth your time if you’ve got any interest in a show with a suspense/conspiracy/mystery/possibly sci-fi edge.

*The Joe/Jack comparison was my favorite. I even wrote it out. And while I don’t believe it is true anymore (see my thoughts on Joe above), I do believe it is hilarious. So, here is that commentary for y’all to enjoy:

Joe. He’s all “My Name Is One Syllable Starting With J. I’m Handsome And Have Philosophical Ideas And Like To Be The Guy Everyone Turns To. I’m In A Potentially Life-Or-Death Situation And Should Probably Be Worried About All The Weird Shit Going Down Around Here But I’m Busy Having Awkward Fuzzy Feelings About The Lead Female, Whose Name Has The Prominent T And A Her Figure Lacks, And Am Destined To Walk Around With An Enormous Boner For Her For The Rest Of The Series.”
…this sounds awfully familiar. Why is that? Hmm…OH YEAH. That’s because up until a month ago his name was Jack (last name Shepard) and he was wordlessly appointed leader of a band of people stranded on a mysterious Island where weird shit happened all the time. Of course, back then he was actually definitely attractive instead of just vaguely so and he was a doctor and he had real leadership skills and he didn’t turn to anyone else (like the guy with military training who is much better suited for a leadership position but can’t have it because he is too young and too not white) for advice. BUT HEY. Had to make SOME changes. Wouldn’t want this show to be a COMPLETE copy of Lost or anything.

** Some of my favorite Kat quotes to date:

“Leave the legitimate stories to the real journalists.” (BUUUURN.)
“You give me my transvestite first, then you can have your missing mom.”
“Rich bitch a which. That’s what I call a headline.”
“We’re just friends with benefits. You’re hardly a benefit.”
“None of that means dick if you don’t face up to the real issue, Mark.”

This Week 6/28 to 7/4

SONOFABITCH I TOTALLY WROTE THIS ON TIME AND THEN IT DIDN’T PUBLISH. WORDPRESS WTF UP WITH YOU.

I wrote out this weeks schedule and realized it is an embarrassment of a) shows I haven’t seen yet, b) shows I am horrendously not-caught-up-on, and c) shows I am pretty sure will be horrific but that I am perversely drawn to nevertheless.

Anyway, some of this viewing might actually occur on schedule because the craziness that has been my life for weeks is taking a short break. So, if I am not catching up on all of the sleep I’ve lost in the last week (if we call 8 hours an expected amount of sleep per night, that would be +/- 42 lost hours in the past week) then television-related things will definitely happen.

Tonight:
8pm – Persons Unknown on NBC
9pm – Huge on ABC Family
9pm – Lie to Me on FOX
9pm – The Good Guys on FOX

Confession: I haven’t seen any of Persons Unknown yet. Nor have I seen an entire episode of The Good Guys. I do intend to remedy this.

TUESDAY:
8pm – Pretty Little Liars on ABC Family
10pm – Memphis Beat on TNT

Tuesday = Morbid Curiosity Day.

WEDNESDAY:
8pm – So You Think You Can Dance on FOX

Also, FX is playing The Italian Job at 8pm and 10:30pm. That is an awesomely fun movie – must see for Leverage fans.

THURSDAY:
9pm – Rookie Blue on ABC
9pm – Moonlight on the CW
9pm – So You Think You Can Dance (results) on FOX
9pm – Burn Notice on USA
10pm – Boston Med on ABC
10 & 10:30pm – The New Red Green Show on KBTC

“The New Red Green Show”? What is this shit?!

FRIDAY:
10pm – Miami Medical on CBS

SATURDAY:

ABC is airing two episodes of The Forgotten. Goddammit, I thought this show was dead!

SUNDAY:
9pm – Scoundrels on ABC
10pm – The Gates on ABC

Oh, yeah, and I hear there might be fireworks on TV somewhere for some reason…