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BREAKING NEWS: FOX Renews Several Shows

From TV Line, looks like FOX is getting in the renewal mood a little early this year.    Three comedies were just renewed and one drama:

  • New Girl
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine
  • The Mindy Project
  • The Following

I’m always happy for renewed shows because people are keeping their jobs.  I’m even more excited when it means my favorites are coming!!!

The one that has me the most excited on this list is Brooklyn Nine-Nine.  I have loved this show from the minute it aired.  Funny, well written, perfectly cast…this show was tight right out of the gate…which is a challenge for new ensemble comedies.  I was worried because the ratings weren’t good and it was looking bad for cancellation.  Then the Hollywood Foreign Press did me a solid and gave B99 the Golden Globe for Best Comedy.   And they were right on.   Since then, people have checked out the show and if you haven’t, what is wrong with you?  Do you not like sharp, witty TV shows?   Well, I’ll give you a second chance and HIGHLY encourage you to check it out over the summer so you can be ready for the fall.

Of course New Girl and The Following make me happy since those are on my must view list.  I don’t watch The Mindy Project and this renewal surprises me a lot because the ratings are bad and people who I have talked to who have seen the show say it’s pretty bad.  I watched the pilot and 2nd episode and it didn’t do anything for me so it was bumped.   But for those that do, congrats that your crappy show is still on the air!  I say crappy with all due respect of course.

So great news right??   Are you happy about these shows?   Surprised?   Pissed Enlisted isn’t on here?  Worried for Almost Human?    May is a long way away for bubble shows.

 
 

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POST SUPER BOWL REVIEWS: New Girl and Brooklyn Nine-Nine

I really enjoy both of these shows.  I’m still beaming over the fact that B99 won the Golden Globe for Best Comedy!    These post Super Bowl shows are always so hyped up although this year, other than New Girl (which was truly the post SB spot) showcasing that Prince was going to be on, it wasn’t as pumped up as in year’s past.   Maybe the people at FOX knew how bad the game was going to be.   But it appears both had pretty decent ratings and while I really enjoyed New Girl, I was a little disappointed in B99.   Not because it was a bad episode (it wasn’t) but I was hoping for something bigger.

New Girl has been having an up and down season in my opinion.   I’m still torn on whether or not I like having Coach back.  I always felt like the show wasn’t quite sure what to do with Winston but that they were just starting to develop his character a little bit more.  Then Coach came back (since Happy Endings was canceled).   Now I feel like it’s worse.  They don’t seem to know what to do with Coach and Winston.  The funny thing is, Lamorne Morris (Winston) was originally in the running to play Coach and I believe would have been cast had it not been for other commitments and the fact that Damon Waynes Jr. raised his hand for the pilot believing his show “Happy Endings” would be canceled.   So the show runners went with Waynes.  But Morris’ other project fell through and “Happy Endings” was surprisingly renewed so Waynes went back to HE and Morris was brought back as a new character.  Then HE was finally canceled and New Girl brought Coach back.   Now, I think, we have a problem.  It’s as if the show wants to respect the fact that Morris/Winston has been with the show from the beginning and therefore doesn’t want to cut the character but they have their original man (Waynes) and character (Coach) back and don’t want to let that go either.  So what do they do?  Well, up until last night, neither has really done a whole lot of anything.   That’s why seeing them work together to try to get into the Prince party (and it worked) and also trying to score with some Vicky Secret models was hilarious.  I WANT MORE OF THIS!!!   I want more Coach and Winston together.  I’ve always felt like Nick and Schmidt were friends and Winston was there as their punching bag.  Kind of how I felt watching Friends, where Rachel and Monica were friends and Phoebe was just there to be strange.  To me, Jess and Winston were better friends than he was with any of the other guys.  And we haven’t had a chance to see Winston and Coach really do stuff just the two of them until last night….and I loved it!!  I certainly don’t want the show to segment Nick and Schmidt as friends and Winston and Coach as friends.  I want all four of them interacting together and mixing it up.   But I have to say, I thought Morris and Waynes worked so well off of one another, I would like to see that friendship explored more.

As for the other parts of this episode….Loved It!!  Nick tells Jess for the first time that he loves her…and not in a planned way…in a very matter of fact way.   Like when you tell someone who’s about to go out driving in the snow to be careful and safe.  And Jess’ reaction, double finger gun action!!!  Priceless.   The reaction of the guys, with them wanting to die for Nick at her lack of “I love you too” and Jess freaking out in the car with CeCe over realizing she gave Nick a finger gun response at the first time he tells her he loves her was so incredible I couldn’t stop laughing and wanting to run through my TV and hug Nick.   So what do they do?   The men put on their best suits (Schmidt’s suit was, of course, $2,000 while Winston’s came with free socks clipped to the lapel) and go to the party at Prince’s house so Nick can’t recant his I Love You.

When they all meet up (including Schmidt who had to sneak in and declared how bad Prince must be at Frisbee because there were 10 in the bushes) Jess and Nick ask for some alone time so they discuss I-Love-You-Gate.  But their alone time was soon disrupted by, you guessed it, Prince.  Prince allows them ample time to react which proceeds with Jess freaking out and Nick screaming like an 8-year-old girl and then fainting.  Once awake, Prince asks for time with Jess and he takes her on an adventure that includes trying on clothes, playing ping-pong, admiring Prince’s pet butterfly, and learning to say “love” in a candlelit room.  It.  Was.  Awesome.   Eventually, Nick and Jess reconnect and screams to the whole room how she loves him and then they join Prince up on stage to sing one of his songs.   Such a great episode from top to bottom!   Which is why B99 disappointed me.

B99 has been one of my new favorite comedies (The Goldbergs is up there as well.)  I love the cast and the writing.    But this episode felt like just another episode that would air on a regular Tuesday night.   Nothing really felt special about it.  And maybe that was the point.    The show is so good, it doesn’t need a gimmick.  But for a show that’s been struggling to get ratings and viewers, this was a time you were going to get 10-15 million people to watch your show (14.8 million to be specific) where you normally average about 4-5 million.   I was hoping for a “wow” episode so that everyone would finally see the brilliance of this show.  And maybe that’s what is so unfair.   The episode itself was great.  But I feel part of what makes it great is because I have context from earlier episodes.  I know why Jake doesn’t want Amy to go to the Vultures of Major Crimes.   Because in the last new episode, we learned that Jake is starting to fall for Amy.  And yes, a new viewer can easily pick that up, but it doesn’t pack the same punch.   I know why Jake hates Dennis from 30 Rock.  And I know why the Captain is so set on making the office more efficient.  But without his back story, the plot could come across as really silly and forced.   As a regular follower of the show, I loved the episode.  But I’m thinking of those extra 10 million viewers the show got.  Did it grab new viewers with last night’s episode?    I think “The Bet” would have been a better post Super Bowl episode because it would have given you enough history and background on the characters to understand what was going on, it would have paid off a season long running bet between Amy and Jake (which would have been perfectly explained to new viewers), and it really would have showcased this crackpot group of characters and how well they work off of one another, so much better to a NEW audience.   Remember, I’m thinking about this in the scope of “how can we get more people to watch this show and will this post SB episode do the trick.”     I just think “The Bet” would have worked so much better than last night’s episode for a new set of viewers.

But even though I was hoping for a better post SB episode, I still love it.   Seeing Jake trying to get the confession out of the perp before the vulture takes over and enlisting all of the 99 to help stop the vulture was great.   The Serg and the Captain plotting to make sure the office is more efficient by putting Rosa near the bathroom to discourage bathroom breaks, giving Gina a mirror to preoccupy herself, and eliminating the Lost and Found box so Boyle wouldn’t steal anymore hideous clothes (although not before he steals the jacket worn by Cindy Mancini in “Can’t Buy Me Love.”)   Of course, the episode wasn’t complete without the cameos from Adam Sandler and Joe Theissman playing themselves at an antiquities auction where Jake proceeds to break Theissman’s other leg with gross sound effects (though mercifully not showing the break) and ripping Sandler for putting Kevin James in yet another one of his movies.     All in all it was another great B99 episode.   Just wish it had a little more oomph for the SB.

What were your thoughts on New Girl and B99.   Did they live up to the post SB hype?

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2014 in FOX, Recaps and Reviews

 

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SERIES PREMIERE RECAP & REVIEW: Brooklyn Nine-Nine “Pilot” S1 E1

Even better than the 3 minute previews I kept watching over and over again.  Brooklyn Nine-Nine (BNN) was fresh, funny, engaging, and touching.   Yes you read that right, touching.  I’ve heard many comparison to this show and old classic, Barney Miller.  I was too young to watch Barney Miller so I can’t comment but I do know how highly regarded Barney Miller was so for BNN to get that type of analogy is a HUGE compliment.  I just laughed the whole time and throughly enjoyed each and every character.

BNN follows Detective Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg) and his fellow team of detectives as they figure out just how their new CO, Captain Ray Holt (Andre Braugher) will lead their precinct.  See their last Captain let them have fire extinguisher races, so JP is hoping Holt will be just as deferential.   Yeah, not so much.  In a hilarious meet cute, JP is doing his best robot impersonation of the CO while Holt is standing right behind him.   You think Holt is just going to rip into him.  Instead, he tells him that he does a terrible robot impersonation and that he’d like to see him wear a tie.  This back and forth, power play between the two men continue throughout the episode with Holt telling JP he’s been doing too much manscaping and being relished to the records room by not following orders, to JP telling him he’ll dress more appropriately while he’s wearing the tie but no pants and speedo.

The best part of the Holt/JP relationship is that this isn’t the typical smart ass cop getting one over on his boss.  Holt is smart, driven, and very in tune with his crew even though he’s only been there for a few days.  So just when JP thinks he’s gotten one over on his new Captain, Holt turns the tables on him and gets the upper hand.  I love that!   And I think it helps that Samberg and Braugher have fabulous chemistry.  They play off of each other very well with Samberg’s razor-sharp wit and silliness and Braugher’s monotone and stone face delivery.   What makes this work is that Samberg is playing JP as a guy who likes to have fun yet takes his job very seriously.  And while most people want to hate the guy who’s the best and who is also a jokester, push the envelope type of guy, Samberg has such charm and a good balance between the silliness and seriousness that you can’t help but love him and wish you worked with him.   And Braugher, with his deep, commanding voice and huge presence on-screen, is able to play off that because he takes his job just as serious but also has a sense of humor that can have his people relax around him, but also know, they need to follow his command.

The touching moment came at the end of the episode when they are on a stake out and we learn that Holt captured the notorious disco killer in the 70s (loved the hair and suit on Braugher by the way) and JP wants to know why it took him so long to have his own command.   Holt tells him it’s because he’s gay and that the NYPD, at that time, wasn’t ready for a gay commanding officer but when they were, they used him as a publicity stunt and put him in roles that would promote the NYPD as a gay friendly organization.  Now that he finally has his own command, he doesn’t want to blow it.  JP, apologizes to Holt and tells him he feels like a jackass.   This is the type of scene that let’s me know what a great show this will be.   I love comedies when they have heart.  They can take a step back from the humor and give us a real moment with these characters that draw us in and then can find a way to seamlessly and subtly bring the humor back to return us to the comedic element of the show without being disrespectful to “the moment.”  And that’s what happened here.  Holt beared his soul and we got some good insight into why he is the way he is and JP was honestly upset for how he’d been behaving.   Samberg played this scene so well because it could have come off as insincere when after his apology he immediately sees the killer they are targeting and he announces how awesome he is.  But it didn’t.  JP was very genuine in his remorsefulness but Samberg found a way to make that stick when he was very careful about the tone he used in bragging about how he spotted the killer…it even made Holt laugh.

As far as the supporting cast, I was interested in each one of them and can’t wait to find out more.   You have tough as nails Det. Rosa Diaz (Stephanie Beatriz) who is as scary as they say and absolutely perfect in her delivery.  Det. Charles Boyle (Joe Lo Truglio) who has a crush on Diaz and is as clumsy and awkward as they come, but a hard worker and sweet man.  I’m sorry but that muffin scene has me howling every time I watch it. Sgt Terry Jeffords (Terry Crews) is a former field detective turned sergeant because once he had his twin girls, Cagney and Lacey (LOL!), he was fearful of losing his life…cue the scene where he shoots up a mannequin at a department store because of his sheet panic…priceless.  Gina Linetta (Chelsea Peretti) is the office manager and a civilian who is the eyes and ears of the office who has yet to learn she has a filter.  And finally Det. Amy Santiago (Melissa Fumero) who is partners with Peralta and has a contest with him to see who will have more arrests.  She’s very driven and just wants to prove she’s one of the boys and tough as they come.  I love this girl already and let’s face it, it’s only a matter of time before she and JP are together romantically.

It’s a fabulous cast, a great show, and I can’t wait for next Tuesday already.   If you haven’t checked this show out, this is a must watch!

DVR RATING: 5

 

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