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Category Archives: Mid Season

Renew/Cancel and 2015 Mid Season Premiere Dates

On the main page both the 2014/2015 Renew/Cancel tab has been updated (bye-bye Gracepoint) as well as the 2015 Mid Season Premiere Dates.  If anything is missing please let me know!!

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Mid Season Premiere Dates – UPDATED

Make sure you check out the main page for an update on the 2014 Mid Season Premiere Dates.  Game of Thrones, Mad Men, About A Boy, Believe, Survivor, the Amazing Race, and more have all been added.

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2014 in AMC, CBS, HBO, Mid Season, NBC, Premiere Dates

 

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SERIES PREMIERE RECAP & REVIEW: The Following “Pilot” S1 E1

I read all the advanced reviews, listened to all the podcasts, saw the “Inside the Following” trailer.  This show was awesome!!!  It was so gripping and thrilling.  I haven’t been on the edge of my seat that much watching a TV show in a very long time.  Many people from the writers, to the actors, to the critics can really blow up a show’s premise, for both the good and the bad, and sometimes it can be to the extreme of what we’re really watching.  I’ve seen interviews where cast members say they are doing a show that’s really groundbreaking and thought-provoking.  Turns out the show is dull and boring.  I’ve seen show runners say shows are intelligent and  cerebral with intense twist and turns.  Then they turn out shows like The Killing, which was none of those things.    But in all the build up to The Following, I can honestly say, not one report was blown out of proportion.  The show was scary, thrilling, mysterious, creepy, gross, edgy, smart, and sadistic.  And I can’t wait until next week.

The show follows Ryan Hardy (Kevin Bacon) who is a former FBI agent responsible for capturing the world’s most notorious serial killer, Joe Carroll (James Purefoy.)  Hardy has left the bureau under, not so clear circumstances, but apparently has perfected his ability to imbibe copious amounts of vodka out of Poland Springs bottles.  It appears, at least today, that due to being stabbed in the heart by Carroll and not playing well with others, that Hardy was out.  It also might have something to do with his relationship with Claire but I’m not 100% sure if that’s accurate.  But Hardy is recruited back once Carroll escapes from prison.  From there, things happen very quickly and what we learn in the 42 minutes of air time is not what we (I should say I) was expecting.

First there is Carroll himself, the former college professor with an obsession over Edgar Allan Poe, turned collegiate serial killer.  I always complain that shows/movies give away too much of what’s going on in previews these days, but with The Following, nothing I saw in the preview really clued me into the bigger picture.   Probably because I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed but I went in expecting to see one thing and now it’s something completely different.  I thought this was going to be about Carroll escaping and starting his rampage all over with Hardy and crew trying to capture him.  I also thought, that’s going to make the series awfully challenging for many seasons to come if they are only ever chasing Carroll.  What we eventually learn is that his escape (and eventual immediate capture) is just the foundation for a much larger, more sinister plot than anyone could have imagined.    We also learn that you can trust no one.  You can’t take one character on this show at face value or else you could get Survivor blind sided.  It makes watching the show so much more enjoyable when you just don’t know who to trust.

Then there is the romantic triangle that is so bizarre when you think about it.  Carroll was married to another college professor, Claire Matthews (Natalie Zea) who eventually falls in love with her husband’s captor, Hardy.  There are SOOO many questions here.  First, when did Claire and Hardy fall in love?  The one time line we were privy to this evening was in 2002 when Carroll comes home and throws his wife on their bed and she tells him the news that she’s pregnant.  They seem quite happy and in love at this point.  Did Claire already know Hardy at this point?  Was she already having an affair with him?  My guess is that she didn’t know about her husband’s extra curricular activities at that time, so when did she learn?  See I think, she and Hardy didn’t get together until later but my husband has a different theory.  He thinks Joey, Claire’s son, is actually Hardy’s and not Carroll’s.  Remember the scene where she hands the letter to Hardy and she says that “he knows” and Hardy tells her that he’s bluffing and he’s just pretending?   My husband thinks that in the letter Carroll tells Claire he knows Joey is Hardy’s kid.  That means one of two things.  One, that Hardy and Claire’s affair was happening back in 2002 and therefore she was pregnant with Hardy’s kid or two, that she was pregnant at that time but something happened and she lost the baby and got pregnant later with Hardy’s kid.  The former is more plausible because if Carroll is captured in 2003 (and not knowing months at this point) that could be a tight timeline for a second pregnancy.

Finally there is the cult angle.   Like I said earlier, I was expecting this show to be about re-capturing Carroll once he escapes prison and starts his murdering ways again.  But that isn’t the case at all.  This isn’t about Carroll anymore.   I mean it is because it’s his plan, but it isn’t JUST about Carroll because there are so many people involved that it’s bigger than we even realize at this point.  It’s Silence of the Lambs meets Charles Manson!!  I’m not a huge “cult” person because I find them amazingly creepy, and not in a fascinating way.  But this I do find incredibly interesting because I want to know how someone like Joe Carroll is able to get so many people to do what he wishes.   Why would they do this?   How does he get in touch with them?  How does he develop these relationships to the point where people would spend years of their lives following his lead?  Does he have a main point of contact on the outside helping him?   It’s unreal!!   And on a side note, I find it a little disturbing that I was more upset and cringing over the scene where we saw all the puppies who had been slaughtered than I was seeing 4 police officers brutally murdered in the prison.  When I saw that video with the cop with the puppy, I had to cover my eyes because if he hurt that dog and I had to see it, I may have been done with the show.   How wrong is that?

Ok I’m going to go out on a crazy wild limb and say that Agent Mike Weston (Shawn Ashmore) is one of the followers.  I know I know, I’m nuts and it’s only the first episode so why do I want to make a crazy prediction so early.   Because it’s fun!!  This show has already proven that you can’t trust anyone.  Look at Maggie Grace’s adorable gay neighbors who loved her and were there to protect her.  Not so adorable and lovable now are they? Although I said to my husband when the second guy showed up that I didn’t trust him and that I thought he was in on it.  Then there’s Joey’s nanny who’s obviously been with Joey and Claire a long time.   Yep, she’s one of them too.  And Carroll has already gotten one law enforcement officer on his side so I wouldn’t put it past him to reach higher.  He obviously has the intelligence, the charisma, and the arrogance to pull it off.  I wouldn’t put it past him to have a FBI agent in his pocket.  Weston seems the perfect choice at this point.  He’s young, he’s smart, he has a man crush on Hardy and his work, he appears to want to get to know him better and learn from him, he knows the case backwards and forwards, and no one would suspect him.  So I’m all in on Weston being part of the cult.

The big question is why?  Why is Carroll doing this?  Is it because Hardy and his wife had an affair and he wants to get back at both of them?  Is it because he can and he wants to see how far he can take this?  Is it because he’s bored and Angry Birds just isn’t cutting it any more (pardon the pun.)  I have to believe he has a master plan that has levels we haven’t even begun to think of yet.  But I can’t wait to see where this show takes us.

One of the reasons why I think this show works so well is the chemistry between Bacon and Purefoy.  Is it Hopkins/Foster worthy?   Not quite, but it’s pretty damn good.  The scene where Carroll has been recaptured and he explains to Hardy his plan is so chilling, Purefoy knocks it out of the park.  Bacon also does a masterful job of showing his intense anger and disgust while keeping his composure.  You can see the wheels spinning in his head as Carroll unloads all this new information onto him.  It should set up a beautiful, sinister dance between the two of them for the rest of the series.  But I will say one thing.  Agent Hardy, the next time you get a hunch, please please please, bring back up with you!  Why you would go to the Lighthouse by yourself, is beyond me.  And while we’re on that, I’m heartbroken Maggie Grace was killed.  To survive an attack by a serial killer only to learn that the people you trusted for three years, worked for him and led you right back to him only so he could finish the job?  And to expose what happened to her to Hardy the way he did?  Just, evil!

I want to take one brief moment to comment on the violence of the show.  There have been many people commenting on it and since I have a forum to put in my two cents, I’m going to.  I think we live in a society today where violence is all too present.  With technology advancing, it’s easier for people to find more ways to be destructive and deadly and it’s incredibly scary.  There was no worse display of that than what happened in Newtown, CT just last month.  It’s raised many topics about gun laws and gun control.  It has also resurfaced the discussion on violence in video games, movies, and TV.   And I can understand it.  Tragedies like this hit everyone hard.  And even when there isn’t a tragedy current in our heads, many people find it unnecessary to show the levels of violence that many games, movies, and TV shows so graphically display.   But I also understand that we live in a society where people have the creative rights to depict and tell stories as they choose.  Storytellers have the right to broadcast and film their stories as they feel is necessary to tell the best story or get their message across.  And just as they have the right to do it, people who don’t agree with it have the right to not support it by not purchasing those video games, not buying tickets to those movies, or simply changing the channel on their TVs.

This show won’t be for everyone.  It’s dark, it’s gruesome.  And while I’m someone who abhors violence, especially against children and animals, I can also put shows like this in their proper context.  Because for me, I find shows like this compelling.   I want to know how the FBI would attack a situation like this.  I want to see how they profile a twisted individual.  I want to see how they learn and adapt to get smarter and better so that they continue to get evil like that off the streets.  I want to see if I can figure this out right along with them.  Now is this a documentary on the BAU of the FBI?  Of course not.  It’s a TV show for entertainment, not a History Channel expose.  But shows like this don’t happen in a vacuum.  They do research and have consultants that aid with adding realism into a fictional show.  Now scenes and situations will be dramatized for effect but there are storytellers who like to have as much realism as possible when telling a story like this.   And what it all comes down to is that this is fiction, not reality.  If people want to watch a show like this (that is brilliant right off the bat), I think it’s absolutely ok.   If other people want to crucify it for its violent nature, that’s absolutely ok too.  The beauty of this age of TV is that there are hundreds of channels for you to pick from on Monday nights at 9pm.  If The Following isn’t your bag, it’s a shame but I get it.  And I respect your right to watch something else.    Just respect my right to want to watch it.

What did you all think?  Did you like The Following?  Are you as hooked as I am?  Or were you just too creeped out by people stabbing themselves in the eye to come back?   Let me know!

 

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SERIES PREMIERE REVIEW: Deception “Pilot” S1 E1

I’ve read a lot of reviews on the series premiere of Deception.  I had a conference call this morning and I was bored so I read reviews!   Just kidding boss…(not really.)  It was fascinating to see the early reports.  People either all out hated it or loved it and thought it was better than Revenge.   My opinion, somewhere in the middle.  I didn’t think the show was awful or incredible.  It’s a decent show that has potential.

The basic premise is Joanna Locasta (Meagan Good) is an NYC detective who was informed by her old partner and current FBI agent Will Moreno (Las Alonzo) that her best friend Vivian Bowers (Bree Williamson) has died of a drug overdose.  Since the FBI was already looking into the Bowers family for other crimes, he wants her to go undercover and infiltrate the family to see if she can find out what really happened to Vivian (both think she was murdered.)  He asks her because Joanna grew up with the family because her mother was the Bowers custodial manager and she and Vivian were best friends.  She agrees and the story begins.

We meet the Bowers family, the patriarch Robert (Victor Garber), the step-mother Sophia (Katherine LaNasa), troubled son Edward (Tate Donovan) and his “estranged” wife Samantha (Marin Hinkle), playboy Julian (of course he’s named Julian) (Wes Brown), and youngest sibling Mia (Ella Rae Park.)   Basically, everyone is a suspect (except Mia in my opinion) and they all have issues…drug, sex, something creepy and mysterious.  They’re nuts.  Who can you trust?   Absolutely no one!   Last night on Twitter, I went out on a limb to say that I wouldn’t be surprised to learn, eventually, that Sophia and Edward were the “good guys” on the show because they are coming across as the biggest asses right now.  However, if Sophia stayed deliciously nasty, I wouldn’t hate it!

There were many twists and turns for the pilot!  With the big one being that SPOILER ALERT……Mia is really Vivian’s daughter not sister……….SPOILER OVER.  And it confirmed the idea of something more sinister happening to Vivian when we see the close up of a wicked bruise on her check that has a distinct imprint on it and at the end of the episode we see SPOILER ALERT…….Julian hunched down and crying on the docks with a ring in his hand that matches the same pattern on Vivian’s face.  He then hurls the ring into the Hudson River………..SPOILER OVER.   We also see that Edward and Samantha are having issues.  I would go out on a limb to say they are separated over something Edward was alleged to have done.  They have their typical soap opera type cryptic conversation that leads to much speculation as to what the hell they are talking about. He also grabs her quite a bit, which I don’t like.  But she’s very afraid of him and he’s very aloof about life in general.  So what’s going on there?  The big question is can Joanna keep her secret about who she is, other than “Who Killed Vivian” of course!  We did have someone find out that she’s really a cop but he was killed before that storyline could have gotten really interesting.  But who killed him?  Is it the same person/people who killed Vivian?

What did I think?  I liked it.  Was it the greatest hour of TV I ever watched?  Nope.  Was it the worst?  Nope.  I was surprised how harsh some other critics were on the show.  It’s a nighttime soap so it’s going to be campy and silly at times.  I mean seriously?  Tate Donovan is Victor Garber’s son?  Did Garber turn 75 and I didn’t realize it or is Donovan really 40 years old?  I think not.  Garber’s 64 and Donovan is 50.  You do the math.  But this is not the first nor the last time there would be age issues on TV shows (see Kelsey Grammer and John Mahoney on Frasier.)   The one comment I saw in a few reviews that I agree with is that if you’re going to be a nighttime, campy soap, act like it.  Don’t try to be a serious show when you clearly aren’t.  And Deception does seem caught in a little bit of that “are we a serious show or a soap?”  Except LaNasa.  She got the memo.   And she’s great!  If Deception can realize who/what it realize is, I think the show will be fine.  I’m still not sold on Good as the leading lady yet.  She doesn’t command the screen the way Emily van Camp, Kerry Washington, Jada Pinkett Smith, or Kyra Sedgwick can.  But I’m willing to give her a chance.  She’s good but not as dominant as I’d like her to be.

What did you think of Deception?  Will you keep watching?  Did you hate it as much as some of the critics did?

DVR Rating: 3 DVRs

 

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Mid Season Premiere Dates

The first half of the 2012/2013 TV season is already over.  It’s really hard to believe!  So with the first half over and the holiday season almost complete, that only means one thing…it’s mid season time!

I added a new tab to the top of the main page here that lists all the premiere dates.  As more dates come out, I’ll update on this tab.

 
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Posted by on December 27, 2012 in Mid Season, Premiere Dates

 

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RECAP & REVIEW: Scandal “Enemy of the State” S1 E4

This is very quickly becoming one of my favorite shows on TV.  This show is on fire.  While we continue to have our case of the week, it’s the Amanda Tanner/President Fitz case that has me on the edge of my seat dying to know what is going to happen next.  Who’s good, who’s bad?  Who’s right, who’s wrong?   Who’s telling the truth?  Who’s lying?  Every time we get an answer to one question, it leads us to another.  If you aren’t watching Scandal, what’s wrong with you?

I had many favorite moments in this episodes.  One of the most clever was how we received background on the team at Olivia Pope & Associates.  It’s been clear since the beginning that these people would run through fire for Olivia.   But we don’t know why.  These people could have prestigious jobs in any law or security firm in the country but instead choose to work for Olivia.  Why?  With war being declared between OP & A and the White House, Cyrus has a team come in and give him the background on each person working for Olivia including Olivia herself.  It made perfect sense and gave us a peek behind the curtain to each of Olivia’s team member.  The most revealing being that Abby came to work for Olivia after she got her out of an abusive marriage.  The second most revealing being that Quinn didn’t exist before 2009.  Finally, that character is getting interesting.

Another great moment (actually two moments) were Abby’s speech to Olivia and Cyrus’ speech to the President.  Both took a lot of guts and brutal honesty and both are what the individuals needed to hear.  I thought the same thing Abby thought.  Why in the world would Olivia take the case of a known dictator who is an enemy of the state?   Take that a step further, why would she side with said dictator after she learns that his “missing” wife isn’t missing at all.  She fled to a woman’s shelter because she is afraid of him and doesn’t love him anymore.  She wants to take her kids away from this horrible man.  So Olivia’s allegiance is to the dictator?  I don’t get it and I was 100% behind everything Abby did.  Including her talk with Olivia (which was more of a screaming match.)  She reminded Olivia that she was the one who helped her get out of her abusive marriage and that after her husband broke her ribs and dislocated her jaw, it was Olivia who took a tire iron to his kneecaps.  Now that’s an Olivia I would like to see more of.  It woke up something in Olivia and she decided to align with the wife and get her away from her marriage and get her children out of a dangerous situation.  Now the speech Olivia gave to General Flores was completely over the top and unrealistic but I can look past it because in the end, he leaves and Mrs. Flores and her children are granted asylum in the USA.

As for Cyrus’ talk with President Fitz, it was brilliant.  Jeff Perry has been sensational in these first handful of episodes. He lays out for the President exactly what will happen as this Amanda Tanner storyline progresses and the story ends with President Fitz putting a bullet in his head.  It was a brutally graphic but probably true depiction of what happens to people in situations like this.  But similar to Olivia, it was the kick in the ass the President needed to remind himself why he got into politics in the first place and that from now on, it is game on.  Sweet!

Now, we have Amanda Tanner.  Two HUGE things happened.  First, we learned through a phone call she placed that she is lying about something.  Second, is that after that phone call and after the President decides he is ready to play ball, Amanda is kidnapped.  You know who I think is behind this whole thing?   The First Lady.  Mellie Grant is one tough lady.  We know she knew about the affair and when Fitz asked her if she could walk away from all of this, she was vehemently against it.  She basically bitch slapped him and told him to get his head out of his ass.  One.  Tough.  Lady.   So I wouldn’t be surprised if she is behind getting Amanda to lie about whatever she’s lying about.  Why would the First Lady want to do this?   To destroy Fitz and Olivia’s relationship which was obviously affecting him in a way that could negatively impact his status as POTUS.  The question is, what is Amanda lying about?  It’s not the pregnancy because Olivia made her take 5 tests.   It could be the fact that the President is the father of the baby.  But you would think the people behind this would know that is so easy to disproved with a paternity test so it makes me think it’s something else.  Something bigger.  Maybe Amanda was talking to someone else (not the First Lady but someone in her regime) about how she can’t lie to Olivia anymore.  Is the lie the fact that this was set up from the beginning by the First Lady?  Meaning she wanted Amanda to seduce her husband to set this all in motion.  But it would take a lot of planning and things to fall just right for it to land in front of Olivia and therefore move her plan forward.  It’s not impossible but it’s a little harder to believe.  Regardless, I think Mellie is behind this whole thing.

I can’t wait for next week’s episode!  If you haven’t watched Scandal yet, please, I implore you to go check it out on-line or on demand so you can watch these last three episodes with me and enjoy it as much as I do!

 

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SERIES REVIEW: Best Friends Forever

I am so mad.  It’s times like these I can’t see straight with anger and my husband needs to remind me that it’s only a TV show.  But I am furious because it looks like this show isn’t going to make it to next season and this show is AWESOME!!   BFF tells the story of Jessica and Lennon, two BFFs from college who mean the world to one another.

Jessica’s husband is an ass, to put it mildly.  He cheated on her and then served her divorce papers (while Jess was Skyping with Lennon.)   She is devastated so Lennon tells her to come home and stay with her.  Jess flies right back to NYC.  Complicating matters, while Jess is moving back into her old apartment with Lenn, Lenn and her boyfriend Joe have just recently moved in together.  Needless to say, hilarity ensues.

I really feel bad for Lennon.  She’s caught in the middle of wanting to be there for her best friend yet still being respectful to this life she is building with Joe.  The scene that best captures this is when they are watching Steel Magnolias (I love that movie!)  Joe is trying to be supportive by watching this movie he could care less about and immediately becomes my husband in the scene.  My husband is famous for walking in on me watching a show or a movie and start asking 50 thousand questions about what I’m watching distracting me from the show.  It drives me crazy.  And it starts to drive Jess crazy when Joe does this.  She asks him to stop interrupting their favorite movie, when Joe corrects her and says that Braveheart is actually her favorite movie.   They both look at her.  “Well I have a favorite movie with you and I have a favorite movie with you!”  Well handled Lennon!

The thing I love most about the show, and what I love most about all good comedies, is that this show has heart.  This isn’t just making up stupid crazy situations to put people to try to make an audience laugh.  This is a show about when bad things happen, you need the support of your friends to get you through it.  It’s about learning to compromise and how to adapt to new situations for the people you love.  Jess and Lennon are a little strange.  I love that!  They are odd and quirky but so relatable and funny.  I completely believe they are BFFs.  They would do anything for each other.  From Lennon asking Rav to put on this elaborate scheme to make Jess feel better about herself, to Jess asking around about Joe to make sure he’s right for Lenn.  From Lennon chasing Jessica’s ex-husband away and screaming at him to leave her alone, to Jess questioning Lennon to see where she stands on marriage since she thinks Joe is about to propose.

BFF is well written, the cast chemistry is fantastic, and it will make you laugh and tear up.  The scene where Jess is taking a bath and Lenn wants to get her out because Joe needs to do a twosie, is hysterical.  Eventually the girls start fighting and Joe is torn as to whether or not he should go in and help.  He decides to go in and just as he does, Jess pulls Lenn into the tub with her while they are still fighting and Joe laments “this isn’t as hot as I thought it would be.”

I can’t stress enough why you should watch this show.  If freaking Rules of Engagement can last 3 or 4 seasons (and that show is dreadful) then this show should last 5-6.  You need to watch this show!!!!  I can’t believe a show like Whitney will be back next season but this show won’t.  Again, bad timing and lack of promotion will doom a show before it starts.  If NBC “LOVES” this show as much as it says it does, then why did it treat the cast and crew like crap and premiere it when it did?   See my TV Rant post for more on the scheduling debacle in network TV these days.  But I am so pissed off that this show doesn’t have a chance but other crap shows do.   So enjoy this show while you can because it’s terrific!

DVRs: 4

 

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