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Sunday, August 29, 2010

SUMMER TV ROUND-UP 2010: Finale!

I will be reviewing EVERY scripted show during the 2010-2011 TV season on the following networks: NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX and the CW. I will also be reviewing most of the unscripted 'reality' shows, too. Also, I will be reviewing as many scripted shows on cable as I can. Exceptions will be to shows that I just don't know about, or are on stations that I don't get (such as SPARTACUS on STARZ channel). Shows eligible premiered from end of May 2010 through early May 2011.

HAVEN (SYFY) A-
PERSONS UNKNOWN (NBC) A-
WARREN THE APE (MTV) A-
WORK OF ART: NEXT GREAT ARTIST (BRAVO) A-
SCOUNDRELS (ABC) B+
THE NEISTAT BROTHERS (HBO) B+
HOT IN CLEVELAND (TVLAND) B
HUGE (ABCFamily) B
100 QUESTIONS (NBC) B
PRETTY LITTLE LIARS (ABCFamily) B
THE GOOD GUYS (FOX) B
MORGAN FREEMAN'S THROUGH THE WORMHOLE (SCIENCE) B
CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL (CN Adult Swim) B
LOUIE (FX) B-
ON THE ROAD WITH AUSTIN & SANTINO (LIFETIME) B-
COVERT AFFAIRS (USA) B-
RUBICON (AMC) B-
THE JAQUIE BROWN DIARIES (LOGO) B-
18 TO LIFE (CW) B-
THE CHOIR (BBC AMERICA) B-
THE BIG C (Showtime) C+
ARE WE THERE YET? (TBS) C+
SCOOBY DOO! MYSTERIES (CARTOON) C+
RIZZOLI & ISLES (TNT) C+
THE HARD TIMES OF RJ BERGER (MTV) C+
DOWNFALL (ABC) C+
THE GATES (ABC) C
MELISSA & JOEY (ABC FAMILY) C
RUPAUL'S DRAG U (LOGO) C-
THE GLADES (A&E) C-
ROOKIE BLUE (ABC) D+
MEMPHIS BEAT (TNT) D+
PLAIN JANE (CW) D+
UNNATURAL HISTORY (Cartoon Network) D+
BIG LAKE (COMEDY CENTRAL) D
DOUBLE EXPOSURE (BRAVO) D
NEIGHBORS FROM HELL (TBS) D-

The above reviews were based on pilot episodes only. After watching my fave new shows throughout the summer, here is my TOP TEN NEW SUMMER SHOWS 2010 list:

1. SCOUNDRELS (ABC)
2. PERSONS UNKNOWN (NBC)
3. WARREN THE APE (MTV)
4. HOT IN CLEVELAND (Lifetime)
5. WORK OF ART: THE NEXT GREAT ARTIST (BRAVO)
6. HAVEN (SYFY)
7. 100 QUESTIONS (NBC)
8. PRETTY LITTLE LIARS (ABC FAMILY)
9. HUGE (ABC FAMILY)
10. THE GATES (ABC)

SUMMER TV REVIEW: Rubicon

Here it is, the final summer TV review of the season, AMC's RUBICON. I can't say that RUBE is particularly exciting (though check out that train scene!); in fact, I was somewhat bored with the pilot. The show is a slow-build, obviously; and I'm sure the payoff will be great in that DAMAGES kind of way. But as my DVR gets cleared off ready for the fall shows, I've decided to pass on this promising, though slow-moving, new conspiracy thriller series from AMC. B-

Friday, August 20, 2010

Summer TV Review: Melissa & Joey

ABC FAMILY has had an ambitious summer, what with PRETTY LITTLE LIARS, HUGE and now MELISSA & JOEY making waves. Unfortunately not a single series has struck me as something I'd want to commit to, even though all those shows have their merits. With M&J, it has two great leads in Melissa Joan Hart (of SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH) and Joey Lawrence (of BLOSSOM) who rise way above the flat material in a WHOS THE BOSS rip-off that does nothing original to the premise. C

Summer TV Review: BIG LAKE

Right from the start you know you're in trouble with BIG LAKE because of the grating laugh track used to mask joke after unfunny joke. The only highlight of the show is SNL vet Chris Parnell. Lead Gethard (yes, that's his last name) is blah, as is a slim Horatio Sanz. Comedy Central's BIG LAKE is about a fired Wall Street genius who is forced to move back in with his parents. Tired premise and tired jokes abound. Have fun! D

Thursday, August 19, 2010

SUMMER TV REVIEW: THE BIG C

Cancer isnt exactly an easy subject to make a series out of, especially one that has comedic overtones. And THE BIG C falls short of something that I would watch weakly, though to no fault of lead Laura Linney. At times THE BIG C feels like its trying too hard to be in the same league as NURSE JACKIE and TARA. Mixed results, for sure. THE BIG C isnt a bad show, but its also not Must C either. C+

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Summer TV Review: 18 To Life

At first glance, one has to ask: is the CW that I am watching? Well, yes and no. Yes, 18 is on the CW, a network not known for comedy. But it's also a Canadian show that the CeeDub bought outright. The pilot was actually kind of cute, in a JUNO sort of way. B-

Summer TV Review: Scream Queens 2

VH1 has a fun new reality show that reminds me of that nearly-decade-old Faye Dunaway series THE STARLET, only SCREAM QUEENS focuses solely on the horror genre. The winner of this reality show gets to appear in the movie SAW 3D, which comes out in a couple months. What I like about this show is that half the girls are sooo bad that it's fun, all while the other half of girls scream to impress (thus avoiding a total trainwreck of a show). B

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Summer TV Review: The Glades

A&E tries to score with the new show THE GLADES, but I found the lead to be a complete bore. And not even Kiele Sanchez, of LOST, could muster must interest out of me. Further, the pilot was contrived. A waste, for sure. C-

Summer TV Review: Covert Affairs

USA masterfully adds another hit to their line-up, only this one borrows plenty from ALIAS, especially since lead Piper Perabo looks so much like Jennifer Garner. I enjoyed the pilot, though I thought CHUCK handled the comedy elements of this show much better. And with UNDERCOVERS coming this fall, along with NIKITA, will audiences be all spied out? B-

Summer TV Review: On the Road with Austin and Santino

Now that PROJECT RUNWAY has been expanded to 90 minutes and the weaker MODELS OF THE RUNWAY has been canned, LIFETIME opens up this road trip series with RUNWAY fan faves Austin Scarlett (season 1) and Santino Rice (season 2). The result was ho-hum in the pilot, but the leads are a welcome return to the tube. B-

Summer TV Review: Morgan Freeman's Through The Wormhole

This Science Channel original is awesome! If you like hour-long shows that probe the mysteries of the universe, then this is the kind of program you'll love. My only complaints are that the episodes don't reallllly add up to much when you finish them. Many, in fact, left me wanting more explanations. Though to be fair, 95% of the mysteries that exist can't be proven. B

Summer TV Review: Scooby Doo Mysteries!

On the Cartoon Network, kids and nostalgics (Like me) who grew up on the original DOO will take partial delight in this revamped 'toon. Unfortunately, it plays too much for laughs. A passable time-waster, but nowhere near the giddiness I still feel watching the 70s and 80s versions of Scoobs. C+

Summer TV Review: Plain Jane

Just another make-over show that takes ugly ducklings and transforms them into swans. But like so many other shows like it, this 'reality' show is so obviously staged. D+

Summer TV Review: RuPaul's Drag U

DRAG U will come as a disappointment to many who love original competition show DRAG RACE. With DRAG U, fan faves from the past (like Angina, JUJUBEE and my personal fave, PANDORA BOX) teach beauty-challenged women how to dress, strut and perform on a stage. This tired formula wouldnt be so bad if the whole darn mess didnt seem so overly fake. C-