Sunday, September 30, 2007

School Zone

Both of my readers have been after me to write something, even though I talk to them all the time, so there's nothing they don't already know about. Still, they bug the piss right out of me, so it's easier to capitulate and write than endure the hissy fit any longer. Here are my thoughts on the new Fall TV schedule...

Big Bang Theory (7:30, CBS) - Nope. Watched the first episode and felt like I'd already seen it. All the "gags" were already in the promos, so the rest of the filler wasn't worth it. Also, I hate studio audiences that will laugh at anything.

Chuck (7:00, NBC) - Maybe. First episode wasn't terrible and the acting wasn't half bad. The premise is a little weak, but it's kind of funny to see them poking fun at Geek Squad/Best Buy and others. These nerds are more believable and likeable than Big Bang Theory's. I'll give it another couple of weeks.

Journeyman (9:00, NBC) - Yes. I was a little worried with the special effects that kind of suck, but I really like Kevin McKidd (Rome) and the ending of episode 1 was really good (so good, in fact, that I didn't erase it from the DVR). I just wish network execs weren't so afraid of letting a Scottish actor use his Scottish accent. Are Americans not sophisticated enough to handle it?

Reaper (8:00, CW) - Probably. Whether it's all in my head or not, the influence of Kevin Smith appears to be all over this show, and I'm more than ok with that. The pilot was pretty amusing, though I didn't expect that from a show on CW.

Back to You (7:00, Fox) - NO! I watched the pilot and felt really bad about myself afterwards. It's trying to be an Anchorman rip-off and fails miserably. No chemistry, no character, and another artificially enthusiastic studio audience- ICK! The only thing funny about this show is that I bet Fox spent a fortune getting Kelsey & Pat. HA!

Life (9:00, NBC) - Probably. Another British actor (Damian Lewis- Band of Brothers) disguising his accent, but this cop drama has some realistic humor too. I particularly like that he's a Zen practitioner, though I bet it irks the family values nazis who patrol television like it's their job to protect us from anything that's not evangelical Christianity.</rant> NBC has spent some money on this show though, in all the right places. Hello Fox?

Big Shots (9:00, ABC) - Maybe. This is basically "Desperate Executives". The pilot wasn't awful so, like Chuck, I'll give it a couple more weeks.

Moonlight (8:00, CBS) - No. I wanted to like this cop-vampire show, but the acting is TERRIBLE and the production is pretty lame. I think they tried for a bit of a Sin City feel, but didn't go all the way, so it just sucked.

Tell Me You Love Me (8:00, HBO) - Yes, but I don't love the show. It's kind of uncomfortable for me, for personal reasons, to watch couples struggling with their relationships. Still, there's some good nudity & sex, so I'll keep watching.

Not yet aired:
Aliens in America (Mon, 7:30, CW) - Looks promising.
Cavemen (Tues, 7:00, ABC) - Promises to be terrible.
Carpoolers (Tues, 7:30, ABC) - Not sure how the story will last more than 1 episode.
Pushing Daisies (Wed, 7:00, ABC) - Looks very promising.

New, but not Interested:
Gossip Girl, K-Ville, Cane, Bionic Woman, Private Practice, Dirty Sexy Money

I'm Still Watching:
Heroes (Mon, 8:00, NBC)
Rules of Engagement (Mon, 8:30, CBS)
Boston Legal (Tues, 9:00, ABC)
My Name Is Earl (Thu, 7:00, NBC)
30 Rock (Thu, 7:30, NBC)
Ugly Betty (Thu, 7:00, ABC)
ER (Thu, 9:00, NBC)
Desperate Housewives (Sun, 8:00, ABC)
Brothers & Sisters (Sun, 9:00, ABC)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Keep Right

I don't figure anyone really wants to read a day by day recap of where I went and what I saw while on vacation up north, but here's the highlights and you can see photos over on Beth's blog:

Coney Island: Ate a hot dog on the boardwalk, rode the Wonder Wheel and the Cyclone. Astroland is now closed, apparently forever, so if you haven't gone you missed it. If you hurry you can still shoot the freak.
Yankee Game: My jinx against professional sports also works in the TriState Area but it was well worth the price of admission to eat a hot dog in the house that Ruth built. Yankee Stadium is due to be demolished after next year, so get off your butts and go see it.
Philly: Independence Hall is more impressive than I thought, but I think the right tour guide makes all the difference. Liberty Bell is just so-so, imho. Also saw Christ Church and a pretty weak King Tut exhibit. Ate the best cheesesteaks (ploural) in town.
Atlantic City: I don't really like my gambling to be so family-friendly, but the boardwalk and beach kick-ass. I won $18 at video poker but still had to pay for my own buffet. Where's the comps?
The Cloisters: What the hell is the protocol on the "recommended" donation? I didn't really want to pay the whole $20 but I'm not going to give those museum snobs the satisfaction of looking down at me.
Wall Street: Pet the bull, greed is good.
Central Park Reservoir: Why is everyone else walking counter-clockwise?
Chinatown: Yum yum dim sum, my first xiaolong bao. Oh yes, I will be making these at home. Something's amiss when parking costs more than dinner though.

The worst part of any vacation is going home. Yes, there's the tears, but even worse than that is the airline food. Can you believe Continental, my favorite airline, now serves Hot Pockets!? Airline food has never been anything close to "cuisine" but Coair used to do a decent job of not killing you before you reached your destination. On the flight there, I was served a chicken sandwich that looked like a hamburger. Where I come from, chicken patties are breaded, without exception. So I guess I shouldn't have been surprised when on the flight home they served a "chicken wrap". But as I live and breathe, that was no wrap and I've got the diarrhea to prove it. 'Nuff said.

Sunday, September 09, 2007


So tired. I just spent the last 9 days dragging Beth all over the Tristate area looking for "soup dumplings" (xiaolong bao) and cheesesteaks. Fortunately for everyone, I was eventually successful and nobody got hurt. No, rephrase: My feet hurt.

But I was planning to be in New York for Fashion Week anyway, so it worked out nicely: I do my little turn on the catwalk then power my way through the cheese fries. It's going to take me a few days to digest all this and readjust to home, so I'll give you a more fuller update in a day or two.