June 29, 2010

Summer TV Lovin'

I've kind of been slacking on the content around here lately. Apologies. Let's remedy this with some discussion of summer TV.

I caught the pilot of Rookie Blue last week. It was a little slow to get started but on the whole, the premise is excellent and the cast is very good so it's worth watching. Even more so because the summer months can be slim on decent TV. Missy Peregrym was given most of the meat in the pilot and I suspect her character will continue to be the center of attention but hopefully Gregory Smith gets something to do in the next couple of episodes because if there is one thing I know, he's terrific.

As I relearned again a couple of weeks ago when I watched the third season of Everwood as I promised I would. I think three might be my favorite season of the show. I don't know if I loved the coma affair but Anne Heche was really likable as Amanda. Scott Wolf as Dr. Jake "Dimples" Hartman was such an unbelievably perfect addition to the cast and much as I always wanted Andy and Nina together, I can't help but love Nina and Jake as a couple. Maybe just because I love Jake so much, I'm not sure. Plus, as if the Andy/Harold relationship weren't a small slice of perfection on it's own, adding Jake to the mix is just the tiny shred of brilliance that elevates the entire affair into a place I like to call "too awesome."

The relationship between Ephram and Amy hit the stride we were always promised in the preceding seasons and it all felt worth the journey and the wait. Even after Ephram found out about Madison and the baby, there was this hope left between them. Not so much with Ephram and Andy then which was a shame because I thought their relationship had also become something pleasant to behold finally. And fortunately I know going in that they come to terms in the fourth season and that age begins to mature Ephram in the one way he always lacked which is realistic and wonderful.

Rose's cancer was what tears are made of. But it really helped bring something out in all of the Abbotts in those final episodes that was reminiscent of the very best things about each character. And it took some of the focus off of the contentious, painful relationship between Harold and Bright which was, frankly, a little tough to watch sometimes in the same way that Friday Night Lights' slice-of-life stuff can be.

But my favorite thing about the third season are the separate story lines for Bright and Hannah and the way the converged to become their combined story as they developed a relationship with each other. Bright was a fuckup from the word go and when his attempt to redeem himself didn't yield immediate, miraculous results in season two, he quickly back-slid into behaviors that were markedly worse than we would have even expected. Meanwhile, Hannah came to town as the most socially awkward girl in the history of the world and simply by being a sweet, funny, likable person, she developed great friendships with Ephram, Amy and Bright. As she dealt with the really normal teenage stuff (nursing an enormous crush on Bright, having a first boyfriend that she just didn't like in that way, etc.) she also dealt with the not-so-average realities of her life. Those being that her father was dying of Huntington's disease and that there was a 50/50 chance she would develop the disease as well. Through all of this, the Hannah and Bright became closer as friends and when Bright realized that he loved her, it wasn't because she had some big makeover and her finally saw her. It was because the more he knew her, the more he saw how beautiful she'd always been and without her ever changing who she was, how she acted or what she looked like, she became incredibly hot to him.

In a word: awesome!

Now, hurry up and release season 4, Warner Home Video!

News came this week that ABC Family has increased the episode order for Pretty Little Liars to a full 22 for the first season and I celebrate that decision. I mean, the show is flawed in many ways with the two biggest being that 2 out of the 4 main girls can NOT act (Lucy Hale and Ashley Benson are both pretty great but Troian Avery Bellisario and Shay Mitchell are terrible and Tammin Sursok isn't a whole lot better), and that Bianca Lawson has been playing high school students since I was actually IN high school and I graduated 16 years ago. Still, I am enjoying this fun, summer show and I look forward to a full slate of episodes.

Finally, a bit later than I said I would, I started watching the third season of Dawson's Creek last weekend. I picked the third season because I always remember that one as sucking less than the two before. That's still true of course, the first season was particularly tough to take and the second was barely more tolerable but the third improves substantially on the shoulders of better stories for Jack, the relationship between Pacey and Joey and the slow evolution of Jen as someone who isn't purely annoying. I don't care at all for the Henry hooey and I could stand never to think about that Eve shit ever again, but for the most part, the third season finds it's stride. Unfortunately what I had forgotten about the show was how truly bad the dialogue is. I mean, really, intensely AWFUL. I hadn't forgotten how much I disliked Dawson though, and what an insufferable twat he was, but it turns out that time has only made him MORE unlikable and more insufferably twattastic.
"Four to Tango" might be my favorite episode of the entire series and I watched that last night. Too bad it was followed immediately by the introduction of that twerpy AJ and annoying Ethan in "First Encounters of the Close Kind" and then even more Ethan, Nikki (Bianca Lawson - see what I mean?) and Henry in "Barefoot at Capefest" (or as I like to call it, "Barefoot at Crapfest"). Still, there are some other good eps coming up...no matter how hard I try, I can never not tear up at "To Green, With Love" and, obviously, I'm looking forward to when Pacey and Joey start smooching.

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