Amanda Gates

TV Winners & Losers 2011-2012, Part I

Last summer I made some predictions about the new fall shows. I think I was 3 for 5, with The Playboy Club, Charlie’s Angels and Pan Am all getting the boot. Once Upon a Time and Last Man Standing stuck around. And I can’t believe Whitney did too.

Then last fall I wrote my two-part thoughts on both the new and old shows I watched during premiere week. As the shows wind down (or since some already have), here are some season-ending thoughts.


HIMYM: This show has remained awesome this season. The finding-the-mother storyline has never bothered me; I just enjoy the show one episode at a time. I love how these characters continue to change, yet I still love them all. That doesn’t always happen with a show (i.e. The Office). And this week’s episode threw us a bone! As long as it’s not some trick, we know the mother will be found sometime before 2015. I can deal with that.

New Girl: Best new show of the year, by far. I thought it was funny at the beginning, but it only got funnier. It’s an ensemble show now (Nick is my favorite) and the subtle jokes and quirky personalities just make the show. The last couple episodes have been so funny, they’re knocking some of my all-time favorite Office and Friends eps off the list.

Raising Hope: We still love this show, too. It’s not quite as off-the-wall as My Name is Earl, but the recurring characters and references to the former show are fun to pick up on. While they’re quite kooky, they still have Hope’s best interest at heart. Martha Plimpton is excellent, and after seeing him in both Life and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (as a dramatic actor), I think Garret Dillahunt is most definitely underrated.

Parenthood: I love the Bravermans. They make me cry every week. I know there’s rumors the show might not come back next year, but I refuse to believe such nonsense. The fact that I can see Peter Kruase and Lauren Graham on TV (on the same show!) just makes me happy. (Even if Graham is getting way too skinny.)

The Middle: This show is still great for all the reasons I said so last fall: It feels more real than say Modern Family, because it’s about a middle-class family in suburban nowhere just trying to make ends meet. The kids aren’t gorgeous, the parents work three jobs between them, their house is a mess… That’s life. And they get by.

Modern Family: We’re still loving this show, too. Though, Julie Bowen’s thinness is worrisome and I wish Sophia Vergara's character didn’t have to wear belly shirts all the time. It doesn't feel nearly as real as The Middle, but the writing is still pretty darn funny.

Parks & Rec: I have to say that even though I was sad when they pulled Community for several months, I kind of forgot about it because this show is just so good. I prefer this and Up All Night on Thursday nights, hands down. I love nearly every character on P&R, and the campaign for city council has been pretty hilarious. Walking across the ice to “Get On Your Feet”? I died.

Up All Night: After the first two episodes last fall, I was a fan of Chris and Reagan, but not of Ava. Well, I’ve changed my tune. Maya Rudolph’s Ava has really grown on me and I love the whole cast. This show is hilarious, it has heart, it feels true to life (relationships-wise, not income-wise) and Applegate and Arnett have really good chemistry.

The Big Bang Theory: My husband loves this show and it still makes me laugh a lot. Though I’m worried the gross-out, homophobic, sex humor is leaning more and more toward Two and a Half Men, and well, there was a reason I stopped watching that show. But, those are only bits so far and entire episodes don’t feel out of control yet, so I’m still watching and laughing; but it’s always better when Penny, Amy and Bernadette are around.

Bones: I was one who was very pleased with the way Bones ended last season, and watching Brennan and Booth through pregnancy and a relationship, all the while still solving the crimes—it’s been a great season. I would like to see a little more PDA between the two, though. They’re supposed to love each other, yet they stay very hands off, even in the home.

Since this is already getting too wordy, I'll post my Winners on Cable, plus the shows I'm On the Fence about and the Losers next week.

What shows fall on your winners list?


Me too, Em!

@Em- I just had to totally agree with you about how much I LOVE what New Girl is doing with Schmidt and Cece too!

Parks and Rec

Oh my gosh, when I watched the episode of Parks and Rec where they were walking across the ice, Clare was sleeping on my lap. I was shaking I was laughing so hard (and trying not to laugh out loud and wake her up). Of course, the shaking ended up waking her. Hands down my favorite show on TV.

I don't like Up All Night as much, but I am sticking with it because I love all of the actors.

I also agree with you about New Girl. It is gotten so good. Nick is a stitch, and I love what they are doing with Schmidt and Cece, too.

And was so good for the first four seasons, and these last couple seasons have been so hit or miss. However, I do feel like it has given me enough good ones this year that I am satisifed. And I love spending time with the characters, so I am in it until the end.

Big Bang!

We watch Big Bang Theory, Modern Family, AI, and HIMYM at our house. My new favorite is Big Bang Theory. We regularly laugh out loud. Such witty writing, such perfect comedic timing, such loveable nerdy characters.
I watched Mad Men while on maternity leave and fell in love with the show, but have missed a few seasons since then. I tried watching Up all Night and Raising Hope and wasn't hugely impressed (maybe you have to follow on a regular basis?)
We also watch a lot of Calliou. And Bob the Builder. And Lazy Town ...

You're the best

Thanks for your comments! We are "like this" so often, aren't we? I'm so glad you're watching Big Bang from the beginning.

SO much to say, we are "like

SO much to say, we are "like this" with shows sometimes.

New Girl: My fav of the season, too. It just gets better, like you said. And I love that it's more ensemble now too, like you said. I can't pick a fav. though. Although now I have ANOTHER excuse to watch every episode over again (yes, I've already done it once), to pick a fav.

Parenthood: I will cry very hard if they cancel this show. It's too good.

Modern Family: I didn't notice how think Bowen is, but I watch mostly on a computer screen. I just love how funny EVERYONE is on this show. The kids, too. Even little Lilly gets jokes. That are actually funny!

Parks & Rec: Another show that makes me so, so happy. Leslie is the best. I identify with her want to show people how much they mean to her. In every episode she is pure of heart. I wish I gave gifts like she did.

Up all Night: Have we talked about Ava before? I feel the same way. She's grown on me. And even the guy who gave her the dog, who would normally annoy me, and make me not like Ava, was funny because I am increasingly fond of Ava. The one thing about that show that bugs me though is that sometimes the kid is like a soap opera kid. Who is watching her when they are both out running around being funny?

Big Bang Theory: I am now watching this one from season 1 so I'm pretty heavy into the show. I can see what you are saying about how it leans a little Two and a Half Men. It's insanely smart in the first season. And that is what makes it so funny. I think the girls are fresh air and hopefully they can re-route them to nerd-funny rather than gross-out, homophobic, sex funny.

I'm sad to think about your On The Fence and Losers posts, I already don't see a few of the shows I like in this post.

Waiting nervously,

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