Amanda Gates

TV Winners & Losers 2011-2012, Part II

See Part I here.

Winners on Cable

Southland: Another excellent season. Lucy Liu was a great addition for this season’s run. Ben had some major issues, but hopefully he can turn them around. When my husband, who’s a cop, can say it’s a pretty true account of the job (as opposed to Blue Bloods, Law & Order et al), that means something. I hope it gets on Netflix soon so everyone can get onboard.

Walking Dead: When I was writing about TV last fall, I never expected to watch this show. But my husband convinced me (it was a days-long discussion) and so, because I love him, I did. After digesting the first season on Netflix in one weekend (I do not recommend this), I’ve discovered I can handle the zombie apocalypse better on a one-episode-per-week basis, and even then it still gives me nightmares sometimes. (My irrational train of thought: "How would I take care of a two-year-old while running from zombies?!" It’s too much.) The dialogue can be way cheesy, the editing can be poor, there are certain characters who need to die or reinvent (Lori) and the storyline for the first half of the season was way too slow, but it got much better and ended with a bang. It's like a trashy romance or young adult series. You're like, "OK, why am I watching this? Ohhh yeah, because it's pretty awesome."

Mad Men: I was excited that right after Walking Dead ended, I was able to start watching Mad Men. I had caught up in the fall, so it was fun to join the rest of the world and watch it in present day. I’m really enjoying the season so far. It’s a slow-burning show, but that’s OK in this case. Still love Joan, still hate Pete, still think Don is destined to become Roger if he isn’t careful. Good stuff.

On the Fence

Community: The show keeps getting weirder and weirder, and this season hasn’t even been about school. They’re a study group for a class they never go to. It happens with lots of shows (see Friends/ Joey, The Big Bang/Sheldon), but here again the characters are becoming caricatures of their former selves from season one: Troy is dumber, Abed is weirder, Jeff is more of a douche, Shirley is more annoying, if that’s possible—it’s getting old. The part that make me laugh are so few lately and it's really too bad. I was a champion for this show when it first started.

The Office: Wow, this season went downhill for me. And I’m bummed. But, I think they should’ve just ended it last year with Steve Carell leaving. There are still some funny moments, but they’re few and far between. They're recycling old story lines (Oh, Andy has rage? I didn't know that! Oh, Ryan wants Kelly when he can't have her? That's new!). I don’t even really like Pam’s character anymore and that makes me sad. And with Dwight’s new spin-off (which, what? How will that even be good?), another reboot of The Office just doesn’t seem worth it.

Stopped Watching

Suburgatory: I actually enjoyed this show. I think the main characters are fun and many of the storylines were funny, but it kept stacking up on the DVR without us really wanting to put in the time. So, we canned it.

30 Rock: Here’s another show that just kept getting weirder on us. And while it was still pretty funny, like Suburgatory it kept stacking up on the DVR because we never felt in the mood to watch such a weirdo show. In the end, I only really liked Liz and Jack, but even Alec Baldwin was starting to get on my nerves.

Two Broke Girls: We gave this a couple of tries because we really watch nothing else on Monday nights but HIMYM. But the laugh track, the stupid dirty jokes and the blonde girl’s annoying voice made me turn the channel for good.

Maybe Next Year

Happy Endings:
We did catch several episodes of Happy Endings, just by watching it after Modern Family and it was pretty hilarious. I could see myself making this a regular watch next fall.


Watch Happy Endings! It's one

Watch Happy Endings! It's one of my faves.

30 Rock

I won't deny that I love Tina Fey (she's awesome!), but maybe I'm just ready to see her in a different role. Or she should write more movies. I think mostly I'm just sick of Jenna and Tracy.

Since I don't have cable I

Since I don't have cable I can't comment on some of these shows. I can't WAIT for Mad Men to come out. Diehard fan of that.

I do have to say I was surprised that I didn't realize until I read the above that I stopped watching The Office. Whoops! At least I know it's not worth catching up.

I do still watch 30 Rock though and I think that's where we differ most. Although we do agree it's gotten more weird. But I think I'm a bit addicted to the weird (which can be the only explanation for why I'm hanging on with GCB-it's so odd!).

I am with you, mostly

I don't watch all of these shows, but I pretty much agree with all of your reviews. I LOVE Mad Men, and you are spot on about Don. Also: I am starting to wish I hadn't watched this season of The Office. Then I could just pretend it ended when Steve Carell left. I don't think I'd even attempt to watch a Dwight spin-off. I am also with you on Community. I was a huge advocate for that show at first, but I find I rarely laugh now.

I still watch 30 Rock every week, though. It is definitely weird, but I find it hilarious. I just love Tina Fey, so that keeps me going through some of the less stellar episodes.

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