Too Much TV – Fall 2010

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Image by derekraugh via Flickr

We watch too much television at my house. We should probably seek professional help. Instead, we’re trying to figure out how to juggle DVR schedules and On Demand shows so we can watch everything we want to see… HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHA… [ahem]

Ok, now that I’ve had my nervous breakdown, let’s go through the list…

Last Thursday on the CW, I tried to watch the new Nikita. And though there were some good things (the action was cool, gadgets were cool, girls were beautiful) it just didn’t engage for me. I blame that not on Maggie Q, who plays Nikita in this incarnation of the story, but on the weak characters surrounding her. Shane West as Michael pales when compared to Roy Dupuis in the Peta Wilson-led La Femme Nikita of the late 1990s. And though I used to love Melinda Clarke, her Amanda pales against Alberta Watson’s Madeline from the ’90s series as well… I could go on, but suffice it to say that I won’t be watching again unless I’m very bored.

This week, we have only one show. It’s one my wife started watching and when I found time to see it, I actually enjoyed it…

  • Parenthood (ABC), Tuesday September 14, 2010 at 10pm CST/9pm MST

Next week is insane however…

Let’s start with Monday, September 20, 2010. Eight shows that we want to watch happen to air between 7pm and 10pm our time. Geez. And even if we only watch the first episode of a new series (I’m not convinced I’ll watch The Event, Chase, or Hawaii Five-O, but want to see the first episode to find out), that only reduces the list to 5 shows on a single night…

  • House (FOX), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • Chuck (NBC), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • Rules of Engagement (CBS), 8:30pm CST/7:30pm MST
  • The Event (NBC), 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS), 9:00pm CST/8:00pm MST
  • Castle (ABC), 10pm CST/9pm MST
  • Chase (NBC), 10pm CST/9pm MST
  • Hawaii Five-O (CBS), 10pm CST/9pm MST

Tuesday, September 21, 2010 is a little better…

  • Glee (FOX), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • NCIS (CBS), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • Raising Hope (FOX), 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS), 9pm CST/8pm MST

Wednesday, September 22, 2010, we only have a couple…

  • Undercovers (NBC), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • The Defenders (CBS), 10pm CST/9pm MST

Then Thursday (September 23, 2010) explodes again… Even though I won’t watch Grey’s Anatomy or Private Practice (they’re my wife’s shows), that’s still seven out of nine shows…

  • Bones (FOX), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • Big Bang Theory (CBS), 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • S#*! My Dad Says (CBS), 8:30pm CST/7:30pm MST
  • Fringe (FOX), 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • CSI (CBS), 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • Outsourced (NBC), 9:30pm CST/8:30pm MST
  • Private Practice (ABC), 10pm CST/9pm MST
  • The Mentalist (CBS), 10pm CST/9pm MST

And Friday (September 24, 2010) we only have a couple again:

  • Supernatural (CW), 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • CSI: NY (CBS), 9pm CST/8pm MST

So in the first big week of premieres, we’re looking at… 25 shows potentially.

To add insult to injury for our poor DVRs, there are more premieres scattered throughout October and November too…

  • No Ordinary Family (ABC), Tuesday, September 28, 2010, 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • Stargate Universe (Syfy), Tuesday, September 28, 2010,
    9pm CST/8pm MST
  • Human Target (FOX), Friday, October 1, 2010, 8pm CST/7pm MST
  • The Walking Dead (AMC), Sunday, October 31, 2010, 9pm CST/8pm MST
  • Lie to Me (FOX), Wednesday, November 10, 2010, 9pm CST/8pm MST

That’s a lot of television and I’m guessing a few will fall by the wayside before too long, but still… As Keanu would say – “Whoa.”

What are you planning on watching?
–Fitz

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“Timmy Strikes Back” from Rules of Engagement

Hi all…

Rules of Engagement (TV series)
Image via Wikipedia

I don’t know if you watch Rules of Engagement on CBS, but it can at times be quite funny. The addition of Timmy (Adhir Kalyan) to the cast last season as Russell’s (David Spade) ill-treated assistant has added a new dimension of funny to an already amusing show (gotta love Patrick Warburton!). And this new effort where Timmy strikes back at his evil boss Russell is just hilarious.

One quick summary of the show I saw recently put it like this:

“Rules of Engagement” is a comedy about the different phases of male/female relationships, as seen through the eyes of a newly engaged couple, Adam (Oliver Hudson) and Jennifer (Bianca Kajlich), a long-time married pair, Jeff (Patrick Warburton) and Audrey (Megyn Price), and a single guy on the prowl, Russell (Spade). As they find out, the often confusing stages of a relationship can seem like being on a roller coaster. People can describe the ride to you, but to really know what it’s like you have to experience it for yourself.

This is the most recent “vlog” post from Timmy, about trying to help his boss get some charitable spirit. And it’s pretty amusing.

This one though, the first vlog post, really made me laugh. Have you ever had a boss so bad that you just wanted to scream, yell, and otherwise consider bodily harm to his or her person? Yeah, I’ve been there too. Timmy “represents” for us all…

So if you like Timmy or want to learn more about Rules of Engagement on CBS, be sure to tune in on Mondays at 8:30/7:30pm Central time. And keep checking back at TimmyStrikesBack.com for more vlog posts. I know I will. 🙂

–Fitz

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TV Review: Expedition Africa: Stanley & Livingstone

Hey there…

In the 1800s, explorers were the celebrities of their day. Dr. David Livingstone was one of those celebrities, exploring the interior of Africa in search of the headwaters of the Nile River. Along the way, he was the first European to see the splendors of Victoria Falls, he lost an arm during a lion attack, and disappeared during the Nile expedition around 1870.

Enter Henry Stanley of the New York Herald who was sent to find him and eventually succeeded, greeting the Dr. with the immortal line “Dr. Livingstone I presume” on November 10, 1871. Unfortunately, Livingstone died two years later.

Now in 2009, a group of adventurous souls will brave the African wilderness to retrace Stanley’s footsteps from Zanzibar to the village of Ujiji on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Tanzania with a compass, basic maps, skills, and the will to succeed. Expedition Africa: Stanley & Livingstone documents the trials of their 970 mile journey across swamps, mountains, salt flats, and a whole lot more.

At the core of the expedition is Pasquale Scaturro, Mireya Mayor, Benedict Allen, and Kevin Sites. Together they have an amazing array of skills from leading expeditions up Mt. Everest to reporting on the disappearing species of Madagascar, from surviving 1000-mile treks across deserts to reporting from the front lines. Each has a unique perspective on what it means to be part of this historic expedition, but their personalities may pull them apart far too quickly to succeed.

Scaturro has been exploring the planet for more than 25 years. In 2001, he led blind climber Erik Weihenmayer to the summit of Mt. Everest as he led the National Federation of the Blind 2001 Everest Expedition. Time magazine called it one of the most successful Mt. Everest expeditions in history. He’s also an experienced river guide, having led multiple trips on world-class rivers in South America and Africa.

 

For the last 10 years, Mayor, a Ph.D. in anthropology, has been reporting on wildlife and habitat issues for National Geographic Television and exploring the world. She has dealt with remote jungles with poisonous snakes, gone diving with great white sharks, been charged by gorillas and chased by elephants.

Allen has been touring some of the world’s most inhospitable places, writing about it, and been depicted in no less than 6 major BBC TV series. Where Scaturro has been leading expeditions, Allen has been immersing himself in locations around the world and surviving 1,000-mile walks, alone except for his camels, across the Gobi Desert.

And finally, Sites is no stranger to danger either. He’s spent the last 7 years covering global war and disaster as a multimedia journalist for several national networks. As a solo journalist (or “SoJo”), he brings his tools with him to record, write, edit, and transmit his reports from wherever he is. He’s also a certified EMT.

So to say this team has “mad skills” would be an understatement. Each of them possesses amazing knowledge and experience in a number of fronts. And it will be very interesting to see who survives the journey when the series ends.

Produced by Mark Burnett, who has created hits like Survivor (CBS), The Apprentice (NBC), Rock Star (CBS) and Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader (FOX), Burnett knows how to make successful television. And for me, this series plays a bit like Survivor on steroids, played by professionals.

From the very first episode, the team is challenged not only by the elements and the sheer scope of the journey, but by personality conflicts within the team. And from that first meeting, you can see that Pasquale and Benedict will be butting heads with very different styles of expeditions under their belt. What’s amazing is that each member has something to contribute – but it becomes a question of who’s willing to listen before something bad happens.

The goal is to move 970 miles in 30 days. Will they make it? Who will survive the journey? Tune in to find out.

Expedition Africa begins on May 31, 2009 at 10pm EST on the HISTORY channel. If you’re a fan of Survivor, this is one amazing trip to follow. Be sure to check it out.

–Fitz

p.s. Also check out the Expedition Pack contest!!

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