Tuesday, September 26, 2006

TV Reviews - Week of September 17th

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip - Pilot - Aaron Sorkin's return to TV in this semi-autobiographical look at a fictional late-night TV sketch comedy show is classic Sorkin. The dialouge moves at light speed and the characters seem to be in constant motion. The characters are flawed and conflicted yet, after even one episode, they are also endearing. I'm not sure how long the novelty of seeing the inner workings of SNL-West will last, but for now this looks like a winner. 4/5

Smith - Pilot - I loves me some heist movies, but as I said in my Fall TV preview, that love doesn't necessarily translate to the small screen. Smith, while better than Thief or Heist, still didn't blow me away. The episode was presented in almost reverse chronological order, with the botched getaway shown at the start of the episode and the details leading up to that point filled in as the show progressed. While I usually like the Rashomon/Memento approach in this case it felt like time filler more than anything else. The performances are all top notch, and some of the characters seem likeable, but overall I felt 'meh'. 3/5

Jericho - Pilot - Of all the series concepts I read about this spring this was the one that excited me the most. The rural town of Jericho, Kansas suddenly loses all communications and when the residents look to the western sky they see a mushroom cloud where Denver should be. The townsfolk, convincingly rural without crossing over into hick territory, deal with the situation in a variety of ways, most of which feel realistic. I'm not sure what kind of legs this show has but the first episode was good enough to warrant another look. 3/5

My Name is Earl - Very Bad Things - I was originally worried when the producers said that Earl wouldn't revolve around the list as much this season. After this episode I'm not quite as worried anymore. Earl decides to take Joy's side in an argument for the first time ever, resulting in Joy stealing a truck fom the local furniture store. Earl and Joy spend a while trying to dispose of the truck before they discover that one of the store employees had been trapped in the truck the whole time. Earl was (maybe) the best new show of '05 and this episode continues the excellence. 4/5

No comments: