Appointment Television – The Best Shows Worth Watching

October 27, 2008

As any of you who’ve read my blog know, I watch a lot of television and I mean a lot.  But what most of you might not realize is that I have a husband, three-year old twins, a full-time job and hopes for some semblance of a social life.

My other obligations mean that a lot of my television shows have to be DVRed for viewing at a later time.  But a handful of shows rank as must sees for me.  I will go out of my way to watch these shows live and am gravely disappointed when I can’t.

So without further ado here is my list of appointment shows – television shows I schedule time to watch:

Chuck

Chuck - Season 2 Cast - Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker, Adam Baldwin as Major John Casey, Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski, Sarah Lancaster as Ellie Bartowski, Ryan McPartlin as Capt. Awesome, Joshua Gomez as Morgan Grimes courtesy Mitchell Haaseth/NBC Photo

Chuck - Season 2 Cast - Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker, Adam Baldwin as Major John Casey, Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski, Sarah Lancaster as Ellie Bartowski, Ryan McPartlin as Capt. Awesome, Joshua Gomez as Morgan Grimes courtesy Mitchell Haaseth/NBC Photo

It’s nice to start out the week with a little humor.  That’s why I watch Chuck.  And what’s funnier that a Buy More slacker turned super spy with Adam Baldwin as his take-no-prisoners handler? 

Chuck was happily not living up to his potential when he suddenly acquired a brain full of encrypted government secrets when the computer housing them was destroyed.  Now he balances his day job as part of the Nerd Herd with his secret life – a life where the girl he has a crush on – CIA Agent Sarah Walker – and NSA Agent John Casey (Baldwin) protect him while helping him to unravel the secrets in his head.

I already outlined my Top 10 reasons for watching the show so I won’t bore you with that again.  But if you are looking for a little lighter fare to add to your TV repertoire, then I highly recommend Chuck.

Chuck airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on NBC.

Fringe

Michael Lavine/FOX

FRINGE: When an unlikely trio uncovers a deadly mystery that involves a series of unbelievable events, they discover it may be part of a larger, more disturbing pattern that blurs the line between science fiction and technology on FRINGE airing Tuesdays (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) this fall on FOX. Pictured L-R: Lance Reddick, John Noble, Blair Brown, Kirk Acevedo, Anna Torv, Mark Valley, Joshua Jackson and Jasika Nicole ©2008 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Michael Lavine/FOX

Out of all the new shows, Fringe is my favorite.  Who doesn’t love a show where a cow has a recurring role?  Seriously, the mystery is high in this high-tech X-Files-like show.

With the help of lovable “mad scientist” Walter Bishop and his brilliant, but loner son Peter, FBI Agent Olivia Dunham sets out to unlock the mysteries behind The Pattern.  But Olivia has a few secrets of her own including a dead boyfriend who haunts her.  But she’s not the only enigma – Peter, Walter, the Observer and Nina all have a mystery or two of their own.

I tune in every week for the weekly case, as much as for the overall intrigue.  What is the Pattern?  Who’s behind it?  And what are they trying to do?

Fringe airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on Fox.  The next new episode airs on November 11.

Bones

Kwaku Alston/FOX

BONES: L-R: TJ Thyne, Michaela Conlin, Emily Deschanel, David Boreanaz, Tamara Taylor and Eric Millegan. ©2007 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Kwaku Alston/FOX

I followed Angel’s David Boreanaz to Bones four years ago, but stayed because I fell in love with the team of squints let by Dr. Brennan.  Together the team of brilliant misfits solves murders based on a pile of bones.

Booth (Boreanaz) is a former sniper turned FBI agent who always gets his man.  But this single dad also has a soft spot for Brennan and her team, and of course, his son.  Brennan is his forensic anthropologist partner – brilliant, but socially inept.  And that’s just the leadership of this team.

The cases are intriguing – after all where else do you see a case solved from nothing more than a femur — but the dynamics of the team are what keep me coming back for more.

Bones airs on Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Fox.  The next new episode airs November 5.  You can catch reruns of this season on Mondays at 11 p.m. on TNT.

Supernatural

Supernatural - Season 4 - Jensen Ackles as Dean, Jared Padalecki as Sam courtesy Brian Bowen Smith/Warner Bros. Television Entertainment

Supernatural - Season 4 - Jensen Ackles as Dean, Jared Padalecki as Sam courtesy Brian Bowen Smith/Warner Bros. Television Entertainment

I wait all week for this show.  And if I only get to watch one show a week – Supernatural is it.  In its fourth season, this sci fi series stars a beautiful 67 Impala and two demon hunting brothers – Jensen Ackles and Jared Paledecki as Dean and Sam Winchester – that are more than easy on the eyes.  Need I say more!

Okay, if you need more than pretty faces and a hot car to sell you, I’ll continue.  The show is about an epic battle between good and evil without being preachy.  In fact the show does an excellent job of combining the spooky with excellent dialogue, super music, wit and lots of great pop culture references. 

And the story itself is top-notch (in my opinion).  Dean and Sam were raised by their late father to be hunters after their mother was killed by the powerful yellow-eyed demon Azazel.  This season Dean has been pulled from the bowels of Hell by the angel Castiel to help prevent Armageddon and to keep Sam from being sway to the dark side through the use of his psychic powers – powers he acquired because Azazel dropped demon blood into his mouth when he was a child.

Supernatural airs on the CW on Thursdays at 9 p.m.

That pretty much wraps up a week for me.  I spend the rest of the time catching up on my DVR.

What shows do you find yourself scheduling time in front of the tube for?  What are your must see shows?


Chuck: Sarah’s Past Revealed in ‘vs. the Cougars’

October 21, 2008

On tonight’s episode of Chuck, “Chuck vs. the Cougars,” we got a glimpse into Special Agent Sarah Walker’s safely guarded past – sort of.

Byron Cohen

CHUCK -- "Chuck vs. the Cougars" Episode 204 -- Pictured: Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker -- NBC Photo: Byron Cohen

It seems that Sarah – or rather Jenny Burton – was a typical teenager struggling with adolescent.  She graduated from James Buchanan High School in San Diego in 1998 (anyone else feeling old?).  Go Cougars!  She had a bad haircut, braces and played an instrument (violin maybe?).  And she was not even close to being a member of the in crowd like cheerleader heather Chandler (Nicole Richie) or jock Dick Duffy (Michael Weaver).

But that’s where the typical teenager comparison ends.  It seems Daddy Burton was some kind of con artist who trained Jenny as they moved from city to city and name to name.  In her sophomore year, Jenny’s dad was finally caught by the feds and she was recruited into the CIA by CIA Director Graham (Tony Todd) and given the alias of Sarah Walker.

We still don’t know Sarah’s real name, but at least we finally got to learn how she became a spy.  And we know more than Chuck, who seems to be less obsessed with Sarah’s past.  Was it her reluctance to go to the reunion or that old class picture that deterred Chuck’s curiosity?

What about your curiosity?  Did you learn enough about Sarah in this episode?  Or is there still more mystery to learn?

————-
Related Posts

Top 10 Reasons Why I Like ‘Chuck’

Yvonne Strahovski of Chuck previews Sarah’s surprising past

Quick Chat with Chuck star Zachary Levi


Top 10 Reasons Why I Like ‘Chuck’

September 30, 2008

Last night Chuck returned for its first episode since January, launching its sophomore season with “Chuck vs. the First Date” and I’m instantly reminded of what attracted me to the series last year.

For newbies, the show worked in a nice recap into the first 10 minutes.  Normal guy Chuck is going about his everyday business when a former friend from college, now turned spy, emails him with a file encrypted in pictures containing government secrets known as the Intersect.  The only other version of the Intersect is destroyed and Chuck is inadvertently drafted into the CIA and assigned Sarah (CIA) and Casey (NSA) to protect him.

This show is a nice break from all the question-filled dramas that I normally watch.  Chuck is a fun show that makes me laugh and sit back and relax.

Here are the Top 10 Reasons why I love this show.

1.  Adam Baldwin

Baldwin stars as Casey, the gung ho NSA agent always ready to shoot now and ask questions later.  The intimidating tough guy, who poses as a Buy More employee to keep tabs on Chuck, has a delightful dry humor.  For instance, in this episode, Casey crashes into a restaurant to save Sarah and Chuck, asking “Someone order drive thru?”

Casey is a simple man dedicated to serving his country.  He loves his gun, his Crown Vic and Ronald Regan.  But despite his devotion to the job, Casey has developed a soft spot for Chuck as we saw when he hesitated to terminate Chuck.

2.  Pop Culture References

I love it when a show can work in pop culture references.  It’s like a conversation with friends.  And Chuck is full of these references – most of them involving Chuck’s inner geek.  Last night references included a Comic Con poster, a subtle reference to Back to the Future with Chuck waking up to Huey Lewis songs and a Godfather impersonation.

But my favorite of the night was when Chuck was talking about his future with his sister Ellie and she asks what he wants to do and then says please don’t tell me you want to “pilot the Millennium Falcon.”

3. Chuck

Chuck is anything but James Bond.  But the reluctant spy is finally starting to embrace his alter ego, Charles Carmichael.  He has knack for getting into trouble all on his own, but add the fact that he has government secrets in his head, a best pal who majors in mayhem and a gift for never staying in the car when told and you can see how pandemonium rules Chuck’s humdrum life.

Oh didn’t I mention, Chuck’s track record with women.  He never got over the girl he lost to the same so-called friend who sent him the Intersect – at least until he met Sarah.  But their working relationship keeps his puppy crush sidelined.

4.  The Best Friend

Chuck’s life is complimented – or is that complicated – by the devotion of his slacker best friend Morgan.  The “little bearded man” has made a science out of doing nothing.

But Morgan doesn’t know about Chuck’s secret spy life and often complicates Chuck’s ability to save the world – and score with Sarah – with a scheme or two of his own.  Add Morgan’s creepy crush on Ellie and Chuck’s got a friend that’s just too weird to be true.

5.  The Buy More Staff

Chuck works at Buy More, a big electronics company that might remind you of someplace you might have shopped, as a member of the Nerd Herd described as “Geek Chic – In Overdrive.”  Chuck, Morgan and Casey work for “Big” Mike who is equal parts babysitter and ringmaster.

But the real heart of the store lies in its employees who – led by the master of chaos, Morgan – manage to never do any work because they are always too busy with some crazy scheme.  In last night’s episode Morgan conducted a cage match between Lester and Jeff to see who would get the assistant manager position.  Don’t you wish that’s how promotions worked at your job?

6.  Guest Stars

This series has some great guest stars.  Last year Rachel Bilson played a potential love interest for Chuck.  In the Season 2 premiere, Michael Clarke Duncan starred as this week’s nemesis, Mr. Colt, who told Chuck “I assume you find me imposing.”  I found him imposing and a great adversary for our top spies.

Next week it looks like John Larroquette and Melinda Clarke are up for guest spots.

7.  Captain Awesome

Awesome is Ellie’s jock boyfriend who response to everything is “awesome.”  You just got to like a character with depth like that!

8.  The Over Protective Sister

Ellie has been taking care of Chuck since their parents died.  She’s great as the over protective sister eagerly wanting the best for her brother, but hesitant to meddle in his life – too much.

9.  Cool Episode Titles

Each weekly episode is titled Chuck vs. something.  It’s consistent and descriptive.  I think my favorite had to be “Chuck vs. the Imported Salami.”  It says it all!

10.  The sets

There’s, of course, the Buy More filled with every electronic gadget needed and more, including all the latest spy equipment.  Then there’s the great restaurants that serve as Sarah cover – first Wienerliciouse, now Orange Orange.

But my favorite is the apartment complex where Chuck lives with Ellie and Awesome.  Look familiar?  It’s the old Melrose Place set.  You’ve got to like a show that recycles a piece of television history.

Honorable Mention

I’m adding this reason in just for my husband, since he seems to enjoy these scenes so much.  This show seems to find every reason possible to have a scene where Sarah gets dressed.

Seriously, all kidding aside, Chuck is a great show when you need a little fun in your day.  If you haven’t seen it, check it out.  If you have, tell me why you like Chuck.


Fall TV Premiere Schedule

September 11, 2008

I remember a time when the fall premieres last a week, maybe two.  Nowadays, the premieres go on for a couple months.  If you are like me it’s very hard to keep track of when your favorite shows return, let alone when the new shows start airing.

So in an effort to make your TV viewing pleasure easier, I’ve compiled a list of the premiere dates from various sources including TVGuide.com and TV Guide Magazine.  Hope this helps you find your favorites – new and old.

Thursday, September 11

8 p.m.
Hole in the Wall on Fox

9 p.m.
Kitchen Nightmares on Fox

Friday, September 12

9 p.m.
Don’t Forget the Lyrics! on Fox

Saturday, September 13

11 p.m.
Mad TV on Fox

11:35 p.m.
Saturday Night Live on NBC

Tuesday, September 14

9 p.m.
House on Fox

Thursday, September 18

8 p.m.
Survivor: Gabon on CBS
Smallville on CW

9 p.m.
Supernatural on CW

Sunday, September 21

7 p.m.
In Harm’s Way on CW

8 p.m.
Valentine on CW

9 p.m.
Easy Money on CW

Monday, September 22

8 p.m.
Dancing with the Stars on ABC
The Big Bang Theory on CBS

8:30 p.m.
How I Met Your Mother on CBS

9 p.m.
Heroes on NBC
Two and a Half Men on CBS

9:30 p.m.
Worst Week on CBS

10 p.m.
Boston Legal on ABC
CSI: Miami on CBS

Tuesday, September 23

8 p.m.
Opportunity Knocks on ABC
NCIS on CBS

9 p.m.
The Mentalist on CBS

10 p.m.
Without a Trace on CBS
Law & Order:SVU on NBC

Wednesday, September 24

8 p.m.
New Adventures of Old Christine on CBS
Knight Rider on NBC

8:30 p.m.
Gary Unmarried on CBS

9 p.m.
Criminal Minds on CBS

10 p.m.
CSI: New York on CBS
Lipstick Jungle on NBC

Thursday, September 25

8 p.m.
Ugly Betty on ABC
My Name is Earl on NBC

9 p.m.
Grey’s Anatomy on ABC
The Office on NBC

10 p.m.
ER on NBC

Sunday, September 28

7 p.m.
Extreme Makeover: Home Edition on ABC

8 p.m.
Amazing Race 13 on CBS
The Simpsons on FOX

8:30 p.m.
King of Hill on Fox

9 p.m.
Desperate Housewives on ABC
Cold Case on CBS
Family Guy on Fox
Dexter on Showtime

9:30 p.m.
American Dad on Fox

10 p.m.
Brothers & Sisters on ABC
The Unit on CBS
Californication on Showtime

Monday, September 29

8 p.m.
Chuck on NBC

10 p.m.
Life on NBC (airs Monday and Fridays through Oct. 10 and moves to Fridays)

Wednesday, October 1

8 p.m.
Pushing Daisies on ABC
Friday Night Lights on DirecTV (doesn’t return to NBC on Fridays until midseason)

9 p.m.
Private Practice on ABC

10 p.m.
Dirty Sexy Money on ABC

Friday, October 3

8 p.m.
Wife Swap on ABC
Ghost Whisperer on CBS
Everybody Hates Chris on CW

8:30 p.m.
The Game on CW

9 p.m.
Supernanny on ABC
The Ex List on CBS

10 p.m.
Numbers on CBS

Monday, October 6

9:30 p.m.
Samantha Who? on ABC

Thursday, October 9

8:30 p.m.
Kath & Kim on NBC

9 p.m.
CSI on CBS

9:30 p.m.
Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday on NBC

10 p.m.
Life on Mars on ABC
Eleventh Hour on CBS

Friday, October 10

10 p.m.
The Starter Wife on USA

Monday, October 13

10 p.m.
My Own Worst Enemy on NBC

Tuesday, October 14

10 p.m.
Eli Stone on ABC

Friday, October 17

8 p.m.
Crusoe on NBC

Wednesday, October 29

9 p.m.
Stylista on CW

Thursday, October 30

9:30 p.m.
30 Rock on NBC

Sunday, November 2

7:30 p.m.
Surviving Suburbia on CW

Already Premiered

Sunday
True Blood on HBO at 9 p.m.
Entourage on HBO at 10 p.m.

Monday
Gossip Girl on CW at 8 p.m.
Prison Break on Fox at 9 p.m.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles on Fox at 8 p.m.
One Tree Hill on CW at 9 p.m.
Raising the Bar on TNT at10 p.m.

Tuesdays
90210 on CW at 8 p.m.
The Biggest Loser: Families on NBC at 8 p.m.
Fringe on Fox at 9 p.m.
Greek on ABC Family at 9 p.m.
Privileged on CW at 9 p.m.
The Shield on FX at 10 p.m.

Wednesday
Bones on Fox at 8 p.m.
America’s Next Top Model on CW at 8 p.m.
Deal or No Deal on NBC at 9 p.m.
 ‘Til Death on Fox at 9 p.m.
Do Not Disturb on Fox at 9:30 p.m.

Friday
Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader on Fox at 8 p.m.

What show are you most looking forward to returning?  Supernatural and Chuck tops my list.


Valentine’s Day: The Best TV Couples

February 14, 2008

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I thought I take a look at TV couples for shows airing this season (I’d say currently on TV, but with the strike we aren’t left with much but reality TV).  Here’s my rundown of the most romantic couples on TV today.

The TaylorsBest All Around Couple

Hands down, the best all around couple has to go to Eric and Tami Taylor (Kyle Chandler and Connie Britton) of Friday Night Lights.  This pair has to be the most realistic, but yet madly in love with each other couple on TV. 

In two seasons, we’ve seen them fight and we’ve seen them make up.  We’ve watched as they’ve handled issues around career, parenting, sex, money and even in-laws as a couple.  Whether it’s their witty dialogue or the sweet way they look at each other, Mr. and Mrs. Coach are the couple to be.

Charlie and AmitaSmartest Couple

The combined IQ of Numbers’ Charlie Epps (David Krumholtz) and Amita Ramanujan (Navi Rawat) has got to be through the roof.  But even when they talk about their relationship is terms of simulations and game theory algorithms, this couple is too cute together. 

Amita seems to know just when to give math genius Charlie space to figure out his latest calculation.  And Charlie never seems to underestimate Amita’s talents and has gone the extra mile to support her career advancement even if it might strain the relationship.

Jimmy and ChloeYoung Love

Smallville’s Chloe Sullivan (Allison Mack) might have had a crush on Clark Kent (Tom Welling) and his super hero ways, but I think she’s found her real match in Jimmy Olsen (Aaron Ashmore).  Together they are the perfect Daily Planet duo – an unrelenting reporter and her every faithful photographer.

What’s better than watching this pair tackle the news?  Watching them discover each other and their own feelings in their first real relationship.  Remember what it was like to be young and in love?

Honorable Mention:  It took the murder of a rapist to bring Friday Night Light’s Tyra Collette (Adrianne Palicki) and Landry Clarke (Jesse Plemons) together.  But bizarre plot twist aside, it’s been interesting to watch these two kids from different backgrounds find each other.

Angela and HodginsOddest Couple

If in the first season of Bones’ you told me that Angela Montenegro (Michaela Conlin) would give Dr. Jack Hodgins (T.J. Thyne) a second look, let alone get engaged to him, I would have laughed you out of the room.

But as the romance began to kindle in the second season I couldn’t help but cheer for Hodgins in his relentless pursuit of Angela.  Then when they embarked on the adventure to find Angela’s long lost first husband (she needs to get a divorce in order to marry Hodgins) and I watched the depth of their love unfold, I knew that this couple, as odd a combination as they are, were meant to be.

Honorable Mention:  When Las Vegas Mike Cannon (James Lesure) and Piper Nielsen (Camille Guaty) got drunk and did the ultimate Vegas cliché – got married – I was shocked at the pairing since neither had showed a significant amount of interest in the other.  But I cheered when the two decided to forgo an annulment and give the marriage a shot. 

Chuck and LouI Can See Them Together Couple

When Rachel Bilson turned up on Chuck as deli owner Lou, I was very excited that Chuck (Zachary Levi) might actually have a chance at a real relationship for a change.  But alas, he’s still hung up on his handler Sarah Walker (Yvonne Strahovski).

I continue to hold out hope that not only will Bilson return to resurrect her role as Lou, but that Chuck will finally realize that Sarah is not the right girl for him.

Honorable Mention:  The sexual tension between Dr. Temperance Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and FBI Agent Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) is one of the reasons we tune into Bones each week.  But if the Christmas kiss is any indication of the depth of their attraction that we are in store for a great romance between the two some time in the future.

What’s your favorite TV couple past or present?


What’s the Best New Show on TV This Fall?

October 24, 2007

The Fall TV Season is well under way and November sweeps are just around the corner.  But how did all the new offerings this season fair up?  Here’s my look at the best new shows.

A friend of mine commented that nothing really wowed him this season like Heroes did last year and Lost a few years before.  I disagreed with him.  However, I found that the shows that did wow me were a different kind of show than either Heroes or Lost.  In fact, humor is what impressed me this year. 

Without further ado, here are my Top 5 new shows:

1.  Reaper
In this show, the devil once said, “Life’s too short to drink domestic.”  I say life’s to short not to watch Reaper.  My favorite show of the season, Reaper, has some of the best one liners on TV and they are delivered by none other than the devil himself.  Ray Wise steals every scene he’s in as the boss that won’t let Sam out of his contract, but wants to help him be successful in his role as the devil’s bounty hunter.  While Wise might not be a kinder, gentler devil, he’s definitely a friendlier, funnier devil.

But Wise isn’t the only star of the show.  Sam and his two slacker friends — Socks and Ben — will keep you rolling with their attempts to catch escaped souls using vessels given to them by the devil that include a dirt devil hand vac, a remote control car and a Christmas sweater among other things.  There’s also Sam’s super caring parents — you know the ones that sold his soul to the devil when his dad was dying (or at least that’s what they are telling Sam, but what aren’t they telling him?). 

Of course, there are also girls involved.  Missy Peregrym (Candice from Heroes) stars as Andi, Sam’s dream girl that he can’t quite pair up with.  Valerie Rae Miller (Original Cindy from Dark Angel) rounds out the cast as Socks’ ex and the only one of the friends with real career aspirations.

Maybe this show holds as special place in my heart because Sam’s antics at The Workbench (minus his devil duties) remind me of stories my husband has told me about his days in college working at a home improvement store with his pals. 

Reaper airs on CW on Tuesdays at 9 p.m.

2.  Chuck
Brought to us by O.C. creator Josh Schwartz, this comedy is for the geek in all of us and a perfect lead in to the more serious Heroes.  Lowly Nerd Herd employee Chuck is sent an encrypted file containing all the NSA and CSI secrets by his nemesis and former college roommate, Bryce Larkin.  A rogue spy, Bryce destroyed the computer containing the secrets, leaving the information in Chuck’s head the sole source of these government secrets.  Enter Sarah and Casey (Adam Baldwin), CIA and NSA agents respectively sent to keep Chuck, or rather the information in Chuck’s head, safe until a new computer can be brought online.

Hilarity ensues when a particular image triggers the decrypting of a secret and sends Chuck and his handlers on a mission.  For me Adam Baldwin (Jayne from Firefly) steals the show as the gung ho NSA agent sent to eliminate Chuck but is now babysitting the geek while keeping a distrustful eye on his CIA counterpart.  And I’m particularly looking forward to Rachel Bilson guest staring later this season as a potential love interest for Chuck.

Chuck airs on NBC on Mondays at 8 p.m.

3.  Torchwood
Since the airing of this British series is a season behind on the Sci Fi Channel, I know that Torchwood has already been picked up for a second season.  But I couldn’t help but include it on this list for two reasons — 1.  I like this show and 2.  I wanted to include a cable show after all the great hits (Burn Notice, Mad Men and Army Wives) we got from cable this summer.

A spin-off from Doctor Who, Torchwood is even better than its parent.  The adventures of the immortal Captain Jack Hartness and his crew as they chase down aliens and alien technology as part of the secret British agency Torchwood are fun, exciting and captivating.

Torchwood airs on BBC America on Saturdays at 9 p.m.

4.  Bionic Woman
Will Bionic Woman be the next Battlestar Galactia, a TV remake bigger than its original?  I don’t know, but I think it definitely fills the gap left in BSG’s absence as BSG prepares for its final season.  In fact, I like Katee Sackhoff better as Sarah Corvus than as Starbuck in BSG.   Michelle Ryan impressed me in BBC’s Jekyll this summer so I’m glad to have her show up in another show this fall. 

It’s nice to have an action show on with a strong female lead.  It kind of reminds me of Dark Angel with bionics instead of bar codes.  I’m looking forward to more of Jamie’s adventures and to learning more about just what Will was up to before his demise. 

Bionic Woman airs on NBC on Wednesdays at 9 p.m.

5.  The Big Bang Theory
This sitcom about two science geeks with lots of book smarts, but not much street smarts and their hot, blonde (insert joke here) neighbor is worth a second look.  It’s a nice pairing with my other favorite sitcom, How I Met Your Mother.  The one liners alone in this half-hour show keep me in stitches.

The Big Bang Theories airs on Mondays at 8:30 p.m. on CBS.

While these five top my list as the best new shows of the fall season, there are a few more that I haven’t quite made up my mind about.  I think I’ll need a few more weeks with these shows to find out if they are keepers.

Pushing Daisies
While this new drama as already won critical acclaim and a request for a full season of scripts, the jury is still out for me, who is exactly 35 years, 9 months, 15 days, 10 hours and 2 minutes old at this moment.  I am charmed by the Dr. Seuss-like narration and the Pleasantville scenes.  The vibrant colors are visually stimulating.  But I’m wondering if all this charm and sweetness is going to keep me (and audiences) interested.  Right now I like the quirkiness, but will I be annoyed by it after 10 or so episodes?

Pushing Daisies airs on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on ABC.

Dirty Sexy Money
Right now the Darlings are intriguing.  Everyone likes to look into the life of the rich and famous.  And finding out that their lives are just as screwed up is not only a relief, its fun to watch.  Just ask the tabloids, they sell millions on those stories.  But how long before I tire of watching the rich and spoiled overindulge?  I have hope, but only time will tell.

Dirty Sexy Money airs on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on ABC.

Life
Do we really need another cop/detective/crime fighting show?  Probably not.  But the story of Charlie Crews still intrigues me.  A cop wrongly accused of killing his best friend and his family is released from prison after 12 years when the case is overturned.  The Zen-spewing detective with a passion for fruit and ladies goes back to work on the force while secretly working to discover who really killed his friends.  Will the mystery be enough to hold our attention? 

Life airs on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on NBC.

Journeyman
Quantum Leap this show is not.  But the idea that Dan Vassar just suddenly leaving his current life, really at no will of his own, to travel to the past to set some wrong right is intriguing.  Add the fact that the fiancee he thought dead apparently also travels in time and it’s quite a mystery.  But will the audience stick around to find out why?

Journeyman airs on Monday at 10 p.m. on NBC.

Now that you’ve heard my thoughts, tell me what is your favorite new show of the season and why.


Does ‘Chuck’ hold the secret to ‘Lost’?

October 2, 2007

In the second episode of Chuck, we got a peek at some of the government secrets inside Chuck’s head.  And apparently he holds the answer to one of the biggest Lost mysteries.

Chuck and CaseyLast week, Chuck accidentally downloaded an encrypted file holding all the NSA and CIA secrets sent to him by his former roommate Bryce, a rogue agent who destroyed the original computer holding this valuable information.

Now both the NSA and the CIA are anxious to get their secrets back from a mere BuyMore employee who runs the NerdHerd.  In “Chuck vs. the Helicopter,” Sarah and Casey bring in a doctor who worked on the initial computer containing the secret files to extract the information from Chuck.

In order to keep his identity a secret because of his value, or rather the value of the information he holds, Chuck is put into a home entertainment theater at BuyMore behind closed curtains.  Meanwhile the doctor, in another part of the store, sends him images (remember that’s how the files are encrypted) and Chuck tells him what they mean.

Of course several of the topics were key items for conspiracy theorists everywhere, like who was behind the JFK assassination.  But the one secret that caught my attention was when a photo of a plane was shown and Chuck said “Oceanic Flight 815 was shot down by . . . ”

Unfortunately, the show panned back to the doctor as Chuck revealed the answer of who or what shot downs Oceanic Flight 815.

But as a Lost fan, the reference did give me a chuckle, especially since Chuck (NBC) and Lost (ABC) are on different networks.  But apparently the executive producer of Chuck, Josh Schwartz, is a big lost fan.

Personally, I find this show hilarious.  I was glad to see a little more Jayne (Firefly) in Adam Baldwin this episode.  His rescue attempts while being shot with a tranq dart were hysterical.

But if you are still on the fence about Chuck, this little tidbit might sway you.

The O.C. Rachel Bilson will be joining the cast of Chuck later this season, according to TV Guide.  Bilson, who played Summer Roberts on The O.C. also created by Schwartz, could possibly be Chuck’s next girlfriend.  But expect her to come with a few secrets of her own.

Although I didn’t like Summer’s character the first season of The O.C., she came to be one of my favorite characters on the show.  And she does have a knack for falling for nerds.  I hope to see more of this magic on Chuck.

And I think Sarah’s all wrong for Chuck.  Besides, he doesn’t want/need Bryce’s left overs.  If I knew when Bilson’s guest starring role would start, I’d be counting down the episodes. But since there is no word yet in which episodes Bilson will be, I’ll just sit back and enjoy Chuck.

If you’ve missed this episode, you can catch it on Bravo, Sunday at 1 p.m.

(Photo courtesy of NBC)