Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Square-Eyed Couch Potato: May 2011

Over the last few months I've been working my way through each series of "ONE TREE HILL" and have finally made it to Season 7. In Friends-speak, it's "The One Without Two Original Major Characters" (I won't spoil it for anyone in the world who hasn't seen it yet). I particularly miss that female character, as she was my favourite in the show. Anyway there are some new characters joined the show, but they don't seem as interesting as the ones who have left, and the whole style of the show seemed to have morphed into 'the beautiful and the bitchy' style of many other American TV shows featuring younger characters. I still enjoy the show, but it seems to have lost the emotion and the heart which made it so special in the first place. Although it’s still very addictive nevertheless, and I can’t wait for season 8 which will be back on E4 in June.

Despite my initial enthusiasm, I parted company with "GLEE" (E4) early into season two. Now it seems that E4 feels the same way: its parent company Channel 4 pulled out of the negotiations for season three and have decided to splash their cash instead on the US remake of hit Danish thriller series The Killing (the original screened on BBC4 but I missed it as there was a lot of other stuff going on at the time, but I digress...)

Talking of BBC4 and Nordic stuff, they’ve started re-runs of the Krister Henriksson season two of "WALLANDER" which, of course, is well worth watching all over again.

I may or may not have said before on here that "WHO DARES WINS", (BBC-1) Nick Knowles' game show which is connected to the Saturday night National Lottery draw, is my favourite game show on the telly. Only because it's not a stupid celebrity panel game, or some stupid incomprehensible psychological nonsense, it’s just guessing lists. However the down side is that the same contestant duos seem to stick around for ever - the current Nat & Euan for example - but at least they’re not as irritating as previous contestant Adam "COME ON!!!!" who was briefly the most annoying man on television.

I’m enjoying season one of "PARENTHOOD" (5*) if only for the reason that Lauren Graham is in it, and I love, love, loved her as Lorelai in Gilmore Girls. She’s playing a similar independent, quirky character and is my favourite here too. It’s just a simple, straightforward, family drama which is a nice change from all the cops, hospitals and sci-fi. It’s very well cast, and could probably go on for at least another six seasons (it’s tipped to return for a third season in the States). Just one minor irritation for me: the personality-free zone that is Peter Krause. But that’s maybe just the character he’s playing, I don’t know, as I haven’t seen him in anything else.

One particular strength that American TV series seem to have over our homegrown counterparts is an ability to go on and on and on, and maintain a very high standard along the way. "GREY'S ANATOMY" (Sky Living) has had its shark-jumping moments over the years but on the whole it remains very addictive viewing, even if the often ridiculous relationship merry-go-round has you shaking your head in disbelief. Season 7 has been more satisfying than frustrating, with the focus on the reunited Callie and Arizona, Meredith and Derek's medical dilemma, and some nice side plots. Good news - it's been renewed for another season, however I’ve read various articles on showbiz sites which suggest that it could be the last one for the series’ major characters...? So enjoy it while you can!

Unfortunately I haven’t been watching season three of "BEING ERICA" (E4) because I can’t forgive that channel for their horrendous scheduling of season two :(

"FAIRLY LEGAL" (Universal Channel) is a nice, lightweight, undemanding way to pass an hour. You won't be surprised to learn that it's yet another American drama import, about Kate, a legal mediator. There's not much else to it really, but it's light-hearted fun. Yes it’s been renewed for a second season - hope we get to see it.

"THE APPRENTICE" (BBC1) is back again - and whilst there’s no Baggs The Brand this time round, there’s always an opportunity for posh wannabes to make fools of themselves. And that’s the real reason we watch it of course - to see them taken down several pegs by Lord Sugar. By the way, you can follow "Siralan" on Twitter - - loving his 'feud' with "Piersy"!!

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