Season Premiere review — The Vampire Diaries, “The Birthday”

One of The Vampire Diaries greatest strengths is its ability to come up with wild plot twists that seem both entirely crazy and completely believable at the same time. There have been roughly 9,000 insane developments in the first two seasons alone. And I might be understating it a bit. At this point, we expect … Continue reading Season Premiere review — The Vampire Diaries, “The Birthday”

Season Premiere review — Parenthood, “I Don’t Want to Do This Without You”

NBC’s Parenthood is a hard program to review in the traditional episodic context. The comfortable rhythms and moderate-wattage storylines are easily explained and the performances are always solid. Sometimes, like in the middle stretch of last season, the series kicks it into another gear and it feels like there is more material there to poke … Continue reading Season Premiere review — Parenthood, “I Don’t Want to Do This Without You”

Fall Television “Preview”: Four series with problems to solve

With September upon us, the fall television season is just around the corner. At random times over the next few weeks, I’ll be posting some preview-like pieces about what is to come over the next few months. Just like last year, I haven’t seen any of the season’s new series – no pilots or anything. … Continue reading Fall Television “Preview”: Four series with problems to solve

Season/Series Premieres — Louie, “Pregnant” and Wilfred, “Happiness”

I'm swamped tonight so this dual review is going to be a bit short. Apologies or you're welcome, depending on how you typically view my reviews! Comedies are supposed to be funny. This is a general rule that like to live by, but the world of television sure does love to muck up the already … Continue reading Season/Series Premieres — Louie, “Pregnant” and Wilfred, “Happiness”

Season Premiere — Burn Notice, “Company Man”

Season four of Burn Notice was not up to snuff but the last two episodes were very, very good. More importantly, after four years of moving the chains and delaying any resolution, the series finally pulled the trigger on bringing Michael in from the cold. Because of this (as I tweeted today), I'm very optimistic … Continue reading Season Premiere — Burn Notice, “Company Man”

Season Premiere — White Collar, “On Guard”

In my review of the White Collar season two finale, I wrote the following: But for whatever reason, this series has a problem with its cliffhangers. This might sound weird, but I think the White Collar writers try too hard to make their cliffhangers cliffhanger-y. With any cliffhanger, there’s an obvious intent to shock and surprise the … Continue reading Season Premiere — White Collar, “On Guard”

Season Premiere — Covert Affairs, “Begin the Begin”

Although they are known for their lightweight, summery nature, I like basically all of USA's series. I guess I'd have to like them a lot to write my entire MA thesis about them. But even though I'll watch almost anything USA Network puts on the air, there is certainly a clear distinction between what I … Continue reading Season Premiere — Covert Affairs, “Begin the Begin”

Season Premiere — Community, “Anthropology 101”

Disclaimer: Community is, by far, my favorite comedy on television. There are no episodes of the first season that I even dislike a bit. The good news is, it's also one of the best comedies on television, so my undying devotion won't seem that biased or odd amid the sea of glowing reviews across the interwebs. Last … Continue reading Season Premiere — Community, “Anthropology 101”

Season Premiere — The Office, “Nepotism”

Going into Steve Carell's final season as Michael Scott, The Office is in a unique position. Though last season was definitely the worst thus far and Year 7 is rarely a whirlwind resurgence for a slumping long-running comedy, Carell's departure suggests that the series' writers will be faced with doing some of the things that … Continue reading Season Premiere — The Office, “Nepotism”

Season Premiere — Fringe, “Olivia”

Much has been made about Fringe's elevation from middling mythology series that leaned too heavily on the procedural to an impressive series full of innovative ideas and great, real characters. And for good reason, as the second half of season two was freaking fantastic and the two-part finale was the most confident I have ever … Continue reading Season Premiere — Fringe, “Olivia”

Season Premiere — Chuck, “Chuck Versus the Anniversary”

Watching the Chuck season four premiere felt odd. After wanting that third season so badly and then having to wait until January to get it, the season three premiere felt much bigger and more anticipated. Having the series back so soon with relatively little fanfare (nearly every other series on Monday, returning or new, seemed … Continue reading Season Premiere — Chuck, “Chuck Versus the Anniversary”

Season Premiere — Survivor Nicaragua, “Young at Heart”

I don't imagine that I'll be posting my thoughts on Survivor Nicaragua each week, but it seemed logical to check in on the season during its premiere. This is especially true because of the season's young vs. old gimmick and the participation of the famous football coach Jimmy Johnson. As expected, Johnson takes up a … Continue reading Season Premiere — Survivor Nicaragua, “Young at Heart”

Season Premiere — The Vampire Diaries, “The Return”

After my whirlwind, 2.5-day screening of The Vampire Diaries' first season, I have been chomping at the bit for more. So I can only imagine how those of you waiting since May felt. No matter when we watched first or how long we waited, I think it's safe to say that the season two premiere, … Continue reading Season Premiere — The Vampire Diaries, “The Return”