Monday, April 14, 2014

Last Week in TV - Week of April 6 - Episode Awards and Reviews

TV took a giant upswing for me this week. For the most part, the comedies were funnier and the dramas either more twisty or deeper. I even loved the new show, Turn, but more on that later. This week the nominated show was NCIS: LA. If you would like to nominate a show for me to watch, please fill out the form below. As many shows go into hiatus soon, I'll need to find some great summer shows to watch as well. New and older shows are all welcomed. Until next week, happy TV viewing to you.

Overall Awards:

Best Episode - SHIELD - 1.17 - Turn, Turn, Turn

To be honest the Best Episode award had a lot of competition this week but in the end, it went to the most twisty, action-filled, supercharged episode, which was hands-down SHIELD. In fact, this was the best SHIELD episode yet. With only the small love triangle hiccup getting in the way, the rest was well-paced and very twisty. I liked how there were several key character moments for each of the main cast. Even the beginning when everyone was accusing each other of keeping secrets was thrilling because it got everything out in the open and ratcheted up the tension. If you can’t trust your hero partners, things get dicey really fast. I particularly like the Coulson and May scenes, although it could become tiresome very quickly if Coulson uses Skye as his new confidante. However, the very best thing was Ward shooting Hand. Not because I want her out. I don't. Because it meant that this episode actually had consequences. After Garrett was captured, I was unhappy that nothing would really change on the team. A few minutes and 3 dead agents later, that all changed. I'm still not convinced that Ward isn’t working deep undercover and that Hand is not really dead, but I will be good no matter which way this goes. Plus it ends the dreaded love triangle at least for a little while. That's a win-win. I can't wait to see where they are going with this new SHIELD-less world.

Funniest Character - Jack on Surviving Jack

There are a lot of funny characters on TV right now, but the most consistently funny character this month has been Jack Dunlevy on Surviving Jack. Humor is subjective and my favorite is snark. It also helps that at this point in the school year I am sick of mollycoddling parents. It makes Jack's cynicism and "tell it like it is" hard truths such a joy. After all the man continues to put forth such gems as: "Why do you need friends? I don’t ever want to be around anyone but you." Joanne: "And our children." Jack: "I stand by my original statement." He's also the one in the pilot who quipped, ""I love those damn kids. I may not always like them but name one parent who would hang out with their kids if they weren't their kids." It's true. Mostly though he can get away with lines like this because he clearly cares. Other Great Jack Lines:

"You are not a doctor if your job used to be done by a shotgun."
"Who in the hell stuck a quarter in you? Will you please stop talking?"
"I think everything everyone says is stupid. Tell me anyway."
"Look my daughter's smart. She probably wouldn't date a complete idiot. I could be wrong."
"Look, you're a kid. You're supposed to do stupid stuff. I'm supposed to tell you why it's stupid and make sure you don't do it again."
Jack: "Listen kiddo, you can't stop life from screwing you when it wants to and I know you feel like hell right now, but you will always remember your first kiss." Frankie: "Dad, it was so embarrassing." Jack: "I know but it will pass I promise. And if things ever get too cr**, you always come home and have bacon with your mom and me."
Jack: "God help me. I love that woman. If an asteroid were to hit this earth and she and I were the only 2 people left alive, I'd be okay." Frankie: "What about me?" Jack: "Well it would obviously be a grieving period. I'm not an a**."
"It's called negative reinforcement. It's the quickest way to alter the behavior of simple-minded animals like dogs, chickens, teenage boys."

TV Trend of the Week - 
Shows having their best episodes in a long time (Let's keep this tradition going)

TV has been mostly on a downward spiral for the last couple of weeks so it's been nice to see the big rebound this week. Grimm and Community had their best episodes in awhile at a time when both needed to make strides. Agents of SHIELD and The 100 had their best episodes by far. This is the kind of action and zing I was hoping for earlier in AoS, and it encourages me as to how awesome the show can really be. Meanwhile The 100 went for intensity and kicked everyone squarely in the gut. This show is not afraid to go to dark places and explore, especially in the character interactions. Surprisingly, Elementary allowed Sherlock Holmes to be vulnerable and Jonny Lee Miller knocked it out of the park. It is the most sympathetic Sherlock has ever been to me in any medium. Star-Crossed also ramped up the plot, complete with a cliffhanger. All in all, it was a pretty good week for TV viewers.

Nominated/New Shows:

Nominated Show - NCIS: LA - 5.20 - Windfall

I knew I was behind on NCIS: LA. I just didn't know how far behind. Apparently Kenzie left for some time and it was tragic and Nell has been working with Deeks. Huh? There's also a bald guy I don't recognize who has history with Hetty. Okay. Generally I catch NCIS: LA on USA Network and I'm usually pretty good at figuring out what happened in between. Not so the case tonight. Note to myself - get caught up this summer. As for this episode, it wasn't a NCIS finest. Typically I like NCIS: LA better than NCIS simply because it has more action. In that, this episode did not disappoint. Between the shoot outs and the tackling, action was more than covered. The twists were there too and it was refreshing to have a criminal I could root for besides on White Collar. He really did seem like a decent guy caught up in a lapse of judgment. Throw in the requisite NCIS: LA terrorists and gangs, mix in a few decent twists, and viola, a typical episode. Since I don't watch anything for shipping, the Kenzie and Deeks subtext annoyed more than made me excited but the real problem was that about halfway through the episode I started watching the clock and counting down minutes. I was about to pull a bored Kenzie, who was particularly difficult to watch in this. I think I was rooting for her to be back on the job more than she was. Nell, on the other hand, shone for the first time for me. In general I was unimpressed with this episode, but I have seen enough NCIS: LA to know this isn't a typical episode. Or maybe I just prefer Callen's gypsy mafia storyline to Post-Traumatic Stress Kenzie. Sometimes you just can't see an episode without the character build up that came before.

Grade: C+ for the episode, B for the series
Ranking: 3

Best Scene - Deeks and Nell talk to the gang banger

Best Quote - Sam: "Sommelier, Deeks. Somnambulist is a sleepwalker, kind of like what you do on the job." Deeks: "I know you say these things out of love. Ha! Yeah."

Best Character - Sam, who snarks with the best of them

Most Awkward Welcome - No one seems to know what to say to Kenzie, who is now back. I have no idea why Kenzie went away or for how long.

Funniest - While Sam runs a close second this episode, the warehouse manager who knows nothing and is suspicious about even less is the winner here. He cracks me up.

Biggest Surprise - Shady Wine Dealer was using stolen money to pay the bills of an injured vet

Best Tackle - Deeks

Best Hiding Spot - in the great big wine bottle sign

Biggest Annoyance - Even I a non-regular viewer can pick up the shipping subtext. Blech!

New Show - Turn - 1.01 - Pilot

I am a sucker for a good historical story, especially one from America's past. It's an interest my dad instilled in me early on. Consequently TURN is right up my alley. It especially works because I know very little about Washington's spies and therefore won't be distracted by what I am sure are hundreds of little inaccuracies. Sometimes ignorance truly is bliss. The story centers around a most unfortunate man, caught between the pressures of both the Continental Army and his father, a staunch Loyalist. When his lettuce crop is blighted, he turns to smuggling to get some extra cash only to be forced into the spy business. Conflicted, he mostly just wants to be left alone to tend his farm and protect his family, a true unwilling hero. While the plot was a little slow in order to set up the characters, I found myself intrigued by the premise and engaged with the characters. True, they are mostly stock right now. There's the protagonist torn between 2 sides, a gung ho enthusiast for each side, and of course the stock villain. So far we have only seen the British version in Captain Simcoe but I am sure the colonial version will make an appearance quickly. Sadly another more modern convention raises its ugly head as well - the love triangle. I have no idea why every single show must pursue this route, but it is showcased in spades and may end up TURN's undoing. On the plus side, characters are interesting with strong motives and well-acted. By having Abe start as neutral, they can delve deeper in how things affect him and show the positives and negatives of both sides of the war. The violence, while indeed graphic in a few parts, is actually less than most crime procedural re-enactments these days so it never feels like torture porn even in the torture scenes. Overall, my interest is piqued and I can't wait to see what happens next to Abe.

Grade: B
Ranking: 1 (for at least 3 episodes)

Best Scene - Ben tries to recruit Abe to George Washington's side

Best Quote - Hewlett: "Abraham, what I could not say earlier from my pulpit, as it were, is that I view your crime as a mere symptom of a more serious disease that is afflicting these colonies - anarchy." Abe: "You mean self-rule." Hewlett: "I mean chaos masquerading as freedom. An excuse for criminal activity and every man for himself."

Best Reason to Watch - the Revolutionary War provides endless fodder for interesting storylines and characters

Best Character Interaction - Abe and his father, who are now at loggerheads

The Most Screwed - Abe, who finds that no one will allow him to be neutral in this war. He gets pressure from both sides.

The "Who Knew?" Award - I didn't realize that water boarding was so popular in the Revolutionary War.

Best Negotiator - Abe gets his 12 pounds and silk back from Ben after being arrested by the Continentals

Most Disgusting - Abe cuts his own forehead as part of his disguise

The Stock Douche Award - John Graves Simcoe. Every war show has to have one complete douche for everyone to despise. Simcoe appears to be Turn's.

The "Oops" Award - Abe makes the noisiest spy on the planet, knocking over the army men and stumbling through the desk.

Weekly Shows:

Crisis - 1.04 - We were Supposed to Help Each Other

This episode was moving along pretty well. It had great guest stars. The kids were back into the plot. It looked like the FBI was going to get a partial win. And then it all went to hell in a hand basket by suddenly channeling its inner clich├ęd drama queen. Student-teacher romance? Check. Adultery? Check. Cutting? Me tuning out after rolling my eyes so hard they hurt and tossing socks at the screen? Check, check, check. And the FBI ended up losing AGAIN. My patience is tissue-thin with you, Crisis, and you need all the positive word of mouth you can get. Fix it! Now!

Grade: C-

Best Scene - Sharlene and Sloan are returned, mostly because it should mean we don't have to listen to Sharlene's whining anymore

Best Quote - Finley: "I'm going to pick that up. You want to shoot a federal officer, go ahead. Do me a favor. Aim for this side. I'm still tender over here."

Best Character Interaction - Meg and Dunn

Best Reason to Watch - the premise is still interesting and the mystery is deep enough to sustain over several more episodes

Bets Reason to Fast Forward - no answers and all the freaking, unnecessary melodrama

The "Are You Kidding Me?" Award - Did they really need to add a teacher and student romance? Stupid, pointless distraction. I've dumped better shows for going here. Then we add adultery plus cutting. What the heck? Just stamp After School Special on this show and mark it done.

The Flashback Award - Congressman Wirth's wife is played by Martha Byrne, who used to play Lily on As the World Turns. I watched her in middle school.

Best Use of Child Labor - the kidnapped kids aren't doing anything anyway so why not use them to smuggle all that money away

The Best Possible Plot Twist - It would be awesome if Meg was working with Francis in this whole thing. I doubt that will happen but a fantastic twist that would be.

Resurrection - 1.05 - Insomnia

Resurrection is still very stingy on the answers, but it has done a nice job of upping the ante by having Caleb disappear from jail. I have no idea what it means but it makes for fascinating discussion. Is Caleb so powerful he could get himself out or is there something or someone else at play here? If something else is pulling the strings, why? It doesn't seem like a sound strategy to put people through all this misery. How does this help an invasion or even an assimilation? Is everyone in this show really dead and this is Purgatory? I doubt we get any answers anytime soon, but so far it still has my attention. While the plot is intriguing, the strength of this episode once again depends on the acting. Samaire Armstrong, who plays Elaine, gets the biggest kudos for several stunning scenes. Kurtwood Smith's break down as Henry was similarly mesmerizing. The acting remains the best reason to watch.

Grade: B+

Best Scene - Henry breaks down over Jacob's photo album

Best Quote - Sheriff: "So dead people can just show up and disappear at will. That's what you're saying now."

The "Say What?" Award - Forget the FBI. No way word hasn't leaked out about the resurrected. There would be news cameras there already and a huge media circus would have already began.

Best Moment - Sheriff pulls Caleb into the bars

Best Reason to Fast Forward - Tom and Rachel

Biggest Surprise - Caleb vanishes from the jail scene

The Least Exciting Surprise - Rachel's pregnant

MVP - Elaine, who has almost all the best scenes

Creepiest Bond - Marty overangsts about Jacob and makes everything about him. I understand something bad happened to a kid in the past, but he is so tunnel visioned on Jacob that he's missing the bigger picture and it comes across as very unhealthy. It's also frustrating as a character motivation.

The "Shut Up" Award - Bellamy anytime he's with Elaine

Star-Crossed - 1.08 - An Old Accustom'd Feast

This episode should have been called And the Plot Thickens. Skipping over Emery and Roman's burgeoning romance and Grayson's fall into darkness because of it, this was an excellent episode full of political intrigue and far-reaching story lines. It added Shady Science Teacher's bigger agenda of working for a pharmaceutical company that has been experimenting on Atrians, Castor shooting the pilot of the Atrian spaceship which caused the crash, and the return of Drake's mother. It also strengthened Roman's ties to Gloria and led to an uneasy alliance between Roman and Vega. All in all, this little sleeper show has become one of my favorites. I'm just sorry it took this long for it to find its footing because I would have loved a second season. If you haven't tried Star-Crossed, skip the first two episodes and enjoy the ride while it lasts.

Grade: A-

Best Scene - Drake tells Roman he is going to be sent out as a Trag spy

Best Quote - Roman: "No. no. no, don't give me that cr** about you not having a family, man, 'cause you have us and we're not going anywhere. Come on." Drake: "Alright."

Best Character Interaction - Vega and Roman

Best Awww Moment - Drake says goodbye to the picture of his mother of the wall / Drake sees his mom at the feast

Best Played - Vega for having a prisoner released who could bring down the ekson and turn loyalties closer to her. She's right. Saroya isn't violent but that doesn't mean she isn't dangerous to integration.

Biggest Diss - Mama Atrian refuses to put her hands in the same water as Emery and Jules

Best Reason to Fast Forward - Emery breaks up with Grayson and all things love triangle

Weirdest Plot Device - Emery goes poking through someone else's handbag for reasons that can only be described as plot device, and a very clumsy one at that. Thgen she sees herself as an Atrian piloting the spaceship prior to crashing on Arrival Day

Best Make-Over Ever - Saroya goes into the tub a wrinkly 85 year old and comes out a healthy 40-something

Biggest Shock - Shady Science Teacher flat out told Jules she has her Cyper-filled DNA. I expected this to be dragged on for months. Way to go, Star-Crossed writers for not making us wait.

The "Oh Poor Buddy" Award - Grayson is getting screwed from all sides, but especially from being stuck in a love triangle story line

SHIELD - 1.17 - Turn, Turn, Turn

Grade: A

Best Scene - Garrett villain monologues, which usually I hate but worked for me here surprisingly

Best Scene without Words - Trip sees Garrett and Coulson fills Ward in on Garrett's betrayal

Best Quote - Garrett: "Can I ask the obvious question? What the hell?" - It's the theme for the entire episode.

Best Reason to Fast Forward - Skye and Ward's budding romance/sham

Best Character Interaction - May and Coulson

First Shock - May assembled the team, not Coulson.

Second Shock - Hand thinks Coulson is Hydra

Third Shock (Kind of) - Garrett reveals himself to be Hydra

Biggest Shock - Ward shoots Hand and appears to be working for Hydra

Best Shock - the Hydra emblem takes over the SHIELD one

Future Shock - What if Ward is just a deep, deep cover agent?"

Biggest Question - Is Director Fury dead? I don't watch the movies and have no intention of ever watching them so I made Google my friend. SPOILER FOR THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEEN THE MOVIE - Fury is in hiding, not dead. That makes me oddly happy.

The "Say What?" Award - Shouldn't SHIELD's bus have bulletproof glass in its windows? It shouldn't be this easy to take out the flying bat Cave.

Worst Plan - backing up everything to a single hard drive. I've seen enough spy movies to know that's how people get assassinated or they trust the wrong person with it. Either way, you end up screwed.

Smartest Plan - Fitz hides under the table while the fighting occurs, but still manages to shoot a soldier attacking May and getting a flash device to Coulson to take out Garrett. Very impressive!

Most Intense - Hand questions Simmons and Trip's dedication by pretending to be Hydra.

Best Music - Don't Fear the Reaper by Blue Oyster Cult

Goldbergs - 1.20 - You're Not Invited

The Goldbergs always adds something that makes me nostalgic. This time it was Al Capone's vault. While I never watched the opening, I sure remember all the hype. Later on it would only be matched by the Y2K scare that also ended up being nothing. As for the boy-girl party, this episode got the awkwardness down pitch perfect. All the excitement in the buildup followed by the sweaty palms and nerves in execution, with or without velour. I'm still not sure why we thought it would be a great idea to do it the following week too. In this episode, all the raw nerves of a junior high kid were on display. All the brattiness too. Still growing up with Beverly, you almost have to use emotional blackmail as a shield. Big kudos to Erica, who turned into Beverly , Jr. when Adam manipulated her. It was a side of herself she probably never wanted to see, but it was a lot of fun for the rest of us. I also continue to love Murray and Pops' relationship. They are so good for each other.

Grade: B

Best Quote - Erica: "What the hell is happening here? It looks a love dungeon in a serial killer's house."

Funniest Moment - Adam can't set his Pac-Man watch because the directions are in Japanese

The "Aww, You Look like Tron" Award - Adam finally gets his kiss with Dana, complete with both of them wearing laser tag helmets.

Best Aww Moment - Murray ditches Al Capone's vault to watch Adam play laser tag

The "We Do Turn into Our Mothers" Award - Erica goes full-on Beverly in trying to stop Adam from having a make-out party

Most Embarrassing - Murray interrupts Adam's party by coming down the stairs without pants.

Best Emotional Blackmail - Adam calls Beverly, "Momma" and gives her the sad puppy eyes to get her to promise not to go to the party. Turnabout is fair play I guess.

Best Dating Advice - Listen to everything Barry says and then do the exact opposite. Onion dip is sexy? Since when?

The "Uh, How Old Are You?" Award - Adam watches Bob Ross painting. My grandma loved that guy.

The "Thanks but No Thanks" Award - Barry is sweet by volunteering to drink the whole gallon of milk so Adam can play spin the bottle. I'd have poured the milk out. Barry's way leads to a significant ick factor.

The "Flo has Exited the Building" Award - According to the Goonies episode, Adam was never going to have David Kim over again. I guess Flo the continuity fairy was busy. She did come back for the Student Council meeting though.

Best Move - Adam outmaneuvers Erica with some good blackmail

Biggest Brat - Adam

Best TV Musical Resurgence - The Cure, which has been played on several shows lately. This episode featured Just like Heaven.

Trophy Wife - 1.19 - The Minutes

This episode's focus on another TV show, Scandal, makes little sense to me. Scandal doesn't need any help. Not only is it doing fantastic in ratings, but it already gets a ton of advertising on ABC. As for Trophy Wife, it's ratings are so abysmal that nothing is going to save it now. Spending an entire episode basically promoting another show is one less episode we have to concentrate on the characters we've come to care about. It was a strange way to do cross-promotion. It was also not very entertaining. Kate is not stupid and she should have known not to make such a huge spectacle of herself before getting the room climate. She's obnoxious in this episode. Diane comes off as more harsh and rigid than usual, an ungrateful witch. Warren has become increasingly stupid since the pilot, which makes zero sense given that Diane is his mother. Trophy Wife works best when it allows its characters to develop, not gimmicks. Maybe instead of quashing the squash they should quash the wacky hijinks.

Grade: C

Best Scene - Diane, her housekeeper, and her housekeeper's husband all eat cheese puffs while watching Scandal when Kate walks in.

Best Aww Moment - Bert straightens Warren's tie. How close the family is despite being through 3 marriages is their strength. They should go with that more often.

Best Quote - Pete to Jackie: "Were you high our entire marriage?"

Best Character Interaction - Warren and Bert

Worst Neighbors - Pete and Jackie. When all your neighbors are feuding with you, it's probably not them.

Only Sane People - Evan's parents

Best Manipulation - That is one feisty PTA. I've been to meetings where everyone had an agenda but I've never seard of a PTA member blackmail another. That's one mighty manipulation Iris, aka Squash Mom.

Sweetest Lie - Pete forbids Hillary to go to the dance with the boy she likes to protect her from finding out that the boy doesn't want to go with her

The 100 - 1.04 - Murphy's Law

This was another intense episode of The 100, an increasingly dark and enjoyable show. I particularly like how the show is not afraid to tackle tough issues like the 100 having to police themselves. Quite frankly, I was fine with them stringing up Murphy, since he's one of the least developed characters on the show and generally a huge pain. I also like how Clarke admitted she was wrong to act before thinking through the consequences. Perhaps it will make her less judgmental because she went over the line into full-on annoying this episode. Mostly though, it was how they handled the Charlotte issue that made it such a great show this week. They couldn't have the 100 kill a kid. That would have been too dark and it's hard to root for anyone who wants to. I loved that scene where Murphy asks who wants Charlotte to die and only a couple of people raise their hands. It was a clear double standard that pushed Murphy over the edge and yet it felt like the right double standard in the context of the story. Yet they could not just let Charlotte get away with murder or gloss over the fact that she killed someone, as that would lessen the stakes of the 100. This dark, intense show with great character interactions is really growing on me.

Grade: A-

Best Scene - Standoff between Murphy and Bellamy

Best Quote - Raven: "Go float yourself, Nigel."

Best Aww Moment - Monty gives Jasper the thumbs up after Octavia kisses him for being brave

Best Character Interaction - Abby and Raven

Most Annoying - Clarke, who earned my first, "Shut up, Clarke" of the show

Best Plan - Banishment

Least Shocking - Charlotte runs away while Finn and Clarke sleep

Most Disgusting / Most in Need of Dying - Murphy, who is a cardstock thug of a character

The "Well Duh" Award - What exactly did Clarke think was going to happen when she called out the camp bully as a murderer?

Biggest Shock - Kane's mother is a preacher for Mother Earth

Surviving Jack - 1.03 - How Do You Talk to an Angel?

Another good episode of Surviving Jack, especially because Jack is so relatable to me and so much snarky fun.  There's some great heart moments in this episode as well.

Grade: B+

Best Scene - Joanne brings home NOVA tapes for Jack and he gets dressed to go to her dinner party

Best Reason to Watch - all the great heart moments with the characters along with the snarky laughs

Best Awww Moment - Frankie goes to hug his dad after a hard day of work

Best Character Interaction - Jack and Joanne

Most in Need of a New Job - the Jumpstreet cop who still wears his wedding ring while posing as a teen

Best Use of Garden Shears - to disable the guitar of a kid who really can't play it

Best Redemption - Rachel, who helps George's reputation out in the end

Most Original Punishment - making your daughter drive the kid crushing on her to school

The "Poor Baby" Award - after all that inner conflict, Frankie's crush already has a date to Homecoming

Worst Music - sorry but More Than Words by Extreme was a lame song the first 50,000 times it was played. It doesn't get any better with beginning guitar students.

TBBT - 7.20 - The Relationship Diremption

This was a fairly typical episode of TBBT. The "A" story with Sheldon was compelling. It's rare to see Sheldon discombobulated but in his confusion to pick a new field of study, he was actually easier to relate to than usual. Drunk Sheldon was plain funny. Overall this story line was an A- and a lot of fun to watch. Sadly the "B" storyline about clogged pipes was crass and juvenile at best. A waste of time at worst. It's rare when I want to fast forward through the others to get to Sheldon, but that's exactly what happened in this episode.

Grade: C+

Best Scene - Sheldon tries to pick a new subject to study while Amy, Leonard, and Penny try to help

Best Quote - Sheldon: "Let me put this in a way you'll understand, Penny. You remember how you explained to me that the Kardashians aren't real celebrities. Well, geology is the Kardashians of science."

Best Character Interaction - Sheldon and Penny, who realizes string theory is Sheldon's significant other

Best Running Gag - Sheldon and Cosmo magazine / Sheldon and Stephen Hawking

Best Reason to Fast Forward - the entire double date story line

Most Bizarre - Sheldon's styling haircut, which just looked weird to me

Best Bait and Switch - It looks like Sheldon may have finally slept with Amy, but really he's got a geology book in bed with him and he does the science walk of shame.

Best Spin-Off Plan - Drunk Sheldon and Hawking opening a detective agency

Crazy Ones - 1.20 - Love Sucks

In an apparent attempt to not be canceled, The Crazy Ones has been bringing in all kinds of guest stars. Some work; some don't. In this episode, David Blaine was a complete miss. He felt tacked into scenes just to say he was there, interrupting the natural flow of the story line. Pam Dawber, William's former co-star in Mork and Mindy, did work though, simply because the part could have been played by anyone without missing much. Yes, there was some meta in there, but anyone who didn't know who Dawber was wouldn't even know it was there. That's my kind of guest star.

Grade: B-

Best Scene - Barry-oke complete with 3 guy hug

Best Quote - Andrew: "Real or drama queen?" Zach: "Second."

Best Reason to Fast Forward - Simon's date with Lily, which is incredibly depressing in a zany comedy

Best Return to TV - Pam Dawber. I was little when Mork and Mindy was on but I'm always glad to see former TV stars return.

Best Reason to Hit Mute - Gordon sings Wrecking Ball…badly, very badly

Best Meta - Lily ended with this line: "But I have never met anybody as screwy as you. You're like an alien."

Best Character Interaction - Gordon and Simon

Best New Addition - Jean Haskel from payroll

Best Physical Comedy - anytime Sydney and Gordon are on screen

Smartest Plan - Zach and Lauren plan to pawn Jean off on Sydney to rescue Andrew from her

Best Music - the music of dread that plays when Lauren mentions Jean's name

Elementary - 2.20 - No Lack of Void

My biggest problem with Sherlock Holmes books, episodes, and movies is usually Sherlock. He is often too brusque and obnoxious for my tastes, which is why I prefer Elementary and I love this episode. By giving Sherlock an addiction and making him more humble about it, Jonny Lee Miller plays him more human than most of the Sherlocks. Still he is often a big condescending douche. In this episode though, he apologizes more than he has in all other episodes put together. It is by far the most human he has been and the pain he goes through, the betrayal he feels, had me sympathizing with him, which happens very little. I like this Sherlock, unsure of himself and facing his own possible future. This episode allowed for JLM to stretch the character and it worked very nicely. It also gave Watson some powerful moments. They have been separating the two a lot lately but this time felt more organic than usual and focused on the emotional heart of the story. The case was definitely a side affair in this one and probably could have been taken out completely if this weren't a police procedural. Still it was interesting and even had me doing research on anthrax. More on that below. Overall, this was one of the most powerful episodes of Elementary and I truly hope that they capitalize on it in the next episode instead of dropping it for more of the usual.

Grade: A-

Best Scene - Sherlock and Watson discuss Alastair after breaking plates

Biggest Aww Scene - Sherlock says goodbye to Alastair at his gravesite

Best Quote - Sherlock: "Upon tasting it…" Watson: "Wait. You tasted the anthrax?"

Best Reason to Watch - Sherlock dealing with the death of his friend and mentor through an overdose

Best Character Interaction - Sherlock and Dead Alastair

Most Rash - Sherlock goes into a truck he believes contains anthrax without backup or any hazmat protection

Best Deductive Work - While Sherlock calculates Charlie's stride length, Joan finds a storage unit from his mail. Ha!

The "Please Don't Put Me on a Terrorist Watch List" Award - Thanks Elementary. Due to this episode, I was curious about the difference between weaponized and non-weaponized anthrax and found a website on how to weaponize anthrax. If Homeland Security watch lists me, I'm blaming you.

Biggest Twist - Alastair overdosed after decades of sobriety

Bonus Points - for working antidisestablishmentarianism into the conversation

Best Music - Wrapped in My Memory by Shawn Smith

Community - 5.12 - Basic Story

For me this was the best Community episode since Troy left. It had ample heart and it even made me laugh several times, essential for a comedy. What I like about Community is that you can always take it on different levels and this week's meta hit right in my TV ratings sweet spot. To say that Community is a bubble show is to be a master of understatement. Throughout its career it has been one of the most bubblicious shows of them all. Now as it nears the end of its 5th season, it's right where it always is - somewhere in between cancellation and renewal with its fate hinging on complicated finances its fans will never be privy to and the final ratings of other bubble shows. Will it get the fabled 6 seasons and a movie? Who knows? Which makes the premise of Greendale closing its doors forever to something as commonplace as Subway so poignant. The running theme this year has been Save Greendale, itself a metaphor for returning Community back to its former cult glory after the Dan Harmon-less season 4. Sadly, our main characters did their job too well and made Greendale a sought after property. Subway plans to open a sandwich university in its place. Just another grassroots group taken over by corporate greed. Bonus meta points for using Subway, the target of all cult shows thanks to Chuck and Community's longtime sponsor. Double bonus points for giving it a Goonies ending, with a hunt for buried treasure to save the Goondocks Greendale. While not everything worked for me, especially Abed and the weirdly forced Jeff and Britta marriage proposal, the episode as a whole was more fun than usual. By taking out the wacky story until the end, it allowed the characters to breathe and for us to take a minute to mourn Greendale with them. Let's hope it is not for real. 6 seasons and a movie!

Grade: B+

Best Scene - the joy at passing the apprasier's test turns into sorrow as they realize that they did too good of a job

Best Quote - Hickey: "If I come over there, there are going to be two sounds. Me hitting you…twice."

The "Say What?" Award - Jeff proposes to Britta out of the blue and she says yes. I'm not sure "Say what?" really covers it.

Best Reason to Watch - the surprisingly touching reaction of all the characters dealing with the closing of Greendale

Best Continuity - mentioning Troy again and Dave Mathews Band

Biggest Twist - by fixing Greendale, they actually jeopardized it

Best Hidden Ha - The items on the to-do stars, although I'm not sure why "have a productive meeting" is on there twice. I didn't know Greendale had a lighthouse…or gym demons.

Best Overreaction - Abed's plan to save Greendale involving Swedish, criminals, and making a particle accelerator out of Kleenex boxes

Most Confusing - why we spent that much time listening to the appraiser's lawyer speak

The Weirdest Moment - the slow pan in on a guy slurping his chicken noodle soup for no reason at all

Best Cameo - Jared from Subway replaces the human being mascot

Grimm - 3.18 - The Law of Sacrifice

The last two episodes have restored my faith in Grimm. Don't get me wrong. I am still highly ticked that Wu is still left out. However, without any kind of case of the week, it has been easier to forget what pricks the Grimm Gang has been. I love the ramped up action in these episodes that naturally come when Mama Grimm is on screen. I also love that we got rid of Demon Baby relatively painlessly. Sadly, that also means getting rid of Mama Grimm for awhile. I will miss you until you are back, Mama. What I won't miss is the constant recapitation we get when you are here. Last week's was almost solid recap so I thought we would get a break in this one. Nope. Although Monroe and Rosalee playing catch up was the funniest recap ever, we got too many of them in the task of getting everyone else on board too.

Grade: B+ (A without yet another round of recapitation roulette)

Best Scene - The Grimm Gang pretend to be Resistance to take Demon Baby from Viktor

Best Quote - Adalind: "So we're back together?" Renard: "I guess so." Adalind: "You don't seem too happy about it." Renard: "Well you did sleep with my brother." Adalind: "And you slept with my mother." Renard: "I suppose we belong together."

Biggest Foreshadowing - Freaky Demon Baby calms down in the presence of Mama Grimm. From that point the writing was on the wall. Mama Grimm was leaving us too soon.

Most Emotional - Adalind freaks out when she learns Renard gave her baby to Viktor. I almost felt sorry for her and for me, that is huge.

Best Character Interaction - Monroe and Rosalee try to be hospitable to Mama Grimm, who rebuffs them at every turn

MVP - Mama Grimm, of course

Best New Addition - C. Thomas Howell playing a shady Fed. Come on. Admit it. You thought Ponyboy too.

Best Reason for Mama Grimm to Stay - To teach Nick how to fight just like her awesome self

Best Reason to Fast Forward - all things Viktor, who is now laughable as a villain

Funniest Recap Ever - Nick catches Monroe and Rosalee up on what is happening. I hate recapitations but that was funny.

The "Freaky Purple-Eyed Baby Did What?" Award - For some reason, Demon Baby is particularly attracted to Nerd High School Nick's locket picture and she hates clocks. Nothing like setting all Monroe's decorations atwitter.

Screencaps by  Geek Exchange, BuddyTV, FOX, SMovieSeriesList, MSN, Screenrant, TV Guide, Fansided, Sidereel, Your Entertainment Corner, EW, What Talking, Zap2It, TVSeriesOnlineFree,

About the Author - Dahne
One part teacher librarian - one part avid TV fan, Dahne is a contributing writer for SpoilerTV, where she recaps, reviews, and creates polls for Sleepy Hollow, Arrow, White Collar, Grimm, Teen Wolf, and others. She's addicted to Twitter, live tweets a multitude of shows each week, and co-hosts the Warehouse 13, Sleepy Hollow "Headless," and Teen Wolf "Welcome to Beacon Hills" podcasts for Southgate Media Group. Currently she writes a Last Week in TV column for her blog and SpoilerTV. ~ "I speak TV."

No comments:

Post a Comment