The Decnuary Roundup (Dec ’16/Jan ’17)

I’m getting back on track. S. L. O. W. L. Y. (But I’m probably never going to be able to post about anything immediately after it airs until bitches pay me enough to quit my day job. Just sayin’.) So, here it go (real extra good shit that you need to watch in bold):

December

Watch this shit:

Meh

(a.k.a. Watch it or don’t, but either way it’s not the greatest ever):

  • Delicious

    Wasn’t terrible, but definitely didn’t hook me. If you’re into “narrated from beyond the grave”-type shit, that happens to be British and also includes food, then this is your bag.

  • Mariah’s World

    I mean… it is what it is. If you like reality shows about famous people being famous, here you go.

  • Terry Crews Saves Christmas

    Cute holiday fun. Even better if you wait to binge it until after the world explodes because dumb assholes couldn’t stand female e-mails.

  • The Wall

    Who wants to be aPLINKO!”

Guilty Pleasure:

  • The Deleted

    This utter nonsense is about horny kids who don’t own shirts and apparently escaped a cult because the milk they were served was drugs. And one of them might also be a psychotic robot. Need I say more?

January:

Watch this shit:

  • A Series of Unfortunate Events

    I was sort of prepared to not be interested in this show, but my husband was all about it, so we watched it together. I was won over, folks. It’s a real good time.

  • Beyond

    Just your average, wholesome, all-American “aliens are making shit float in the woods” coming-of-age-in-a-12-year-coma story. Definitely worth your time.

  • Caraoke Showdown

    Musical Cash Cab, hosted by the great Craig Robinson.

  • Emerald City

    Probably about as dark and realistic a take on Oz that we’ve seen.

  • Mary Kills People

    Essentially, it’s Dr. Mary Kevorkian. Not the greatest pilot ever, but Caroline Dhavernas is amazing and I trust her choices. So, I’ll keep watching.

  • The Mick

    Bad Teacher meets Uncle Buck. It has its moments. Three cheers for Carla Jimenez.

  • One Day at a Time

    Cuban family drama, love, and happiness. Seriously, such a good show.

  • Riverdale

    Other than it being based on the Archie comics, it’s not really any different from your typical high school drama. Except maybe the murder mystery? Not that it makes it a bad series, mind you. Just don’t expect anything ground breaking is all I’m saying.

  • Sneaky Pete

    Giovanni Ribisi‘s crazy Scientology-loving-dumbass is an ex-con/future re-con. Not mad at it, but it’s not my new favorite thing.

  • Spy in the Wild

    Fucking crazy-town first-person point of view of animals in their natural habitats. Some really amazing sights.

  • Throwing Shade

    If John Oliver is America’s dad and Samantha Bee is America’s mom, then Bryan Safi and Erin Gibson are attempting to be America’s gay uncle and sassy aunt, respectively.

Meh

(a.k.a. You fuckin’ get it, this shit probably sucks):

  • Big Fan

    “Big fans” have a trivia face-off against celebrities about those celebrities. Unless you’re as big a fan of the celebrity as their stalkers are, the show really won’t mean that much to you.

  • Hunted

    Truly meh. I tried watching the original UK version before this series, and it got boring real quick. This US version explains just a bit more of how they find these voluntary “fugitives,” but that doesn’t really make it any more interesting.

November Roundup

Things are slowing down for the year, folks. The list below is a short one. Might not do another roundup until mid-season officially starts.

The things worth your time (especially in bold):

The things that may or may not be worth your time, a.k.a. Meh:

See? So few new shows that I don’t even have anything to tell you that you definitely shouldn’t watch! I’d say it was a great month if it weren’t for all you fucking morons that didn’t vote for Hillary.

Anyways… Now that the new series have stopped premiering, I’ll probably force myself to quit being lazy and start actually writing review-y shit again. (But no promises…)

Gilmore Girls. Netflix. Game on.

Following up a terribly negative post with the second-most positive post possible. (Second only to news of a Buffy revival.)

Gilmore Girls is being revived by Netflix for four 90-minute films. And I choose to believe it’s happening because I tweeted Netflix, when the Gilmore Girls reunion happened, telling them that the time has come for them to make that call to Amy Sherman-Palladino in which they state “Whenever you’re ready, money is no object.” So… you’re welcome, everyone.

And to truly distract from the CSI: Bullshit in the last post, the Gilmore Girls reunion can be watched here. You’re doubly welcome.

The Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Is Your Crazy New Friend

I was very nervous about Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Very nervous. Just based on the title alone, then even more so after seeing the trailer, I knew it could either be golden or it could be incredibly obnoxious while being equally offensive because “bitches be crazy” cannot be a a series premise.

Happy to say, the former is the case.

A successful Harvard- and Yale-educated Mandarin-speaking New York lawyer with an overbearing mother (who is clearly the source of her psychological trauma) is haunted by the notion that she has zero happiness in her life. She is Rebecca Bunch and, yes, she is unhappy. She Googles things like “How long can one survive without sleep?” and “How many people have died during sex?” She’s got pills for “emergencies” and a healthy faith in foxhole prayers to go along with them. There’s not much that’s too crazy about her, though, which, unfortunately, makes her sadness spread to us, the dear viewer, until she runs into the teenage-summer-camp-love of her life (Josh), all grown-up and about to move to California. Realizing that following him is what she must do (Hey, Felicity!), she breaks into a huge song and dance number to explain to us viewers why. And, gurl… it works. Consider that shit explained. Call it a cliché if you must, but this gay man is not mad at a big song and dance number. (Just to reassure, dear reader… I’m not your typical musical gay. So, if you yourself don’t enjoy going into the woods with mamma mia either, don’t expect to dislike this show just because a crazy chick sings sometimes.)

Aside from having a tiny non-Jewish button nose (her new boss definitely regrets that “compliment”) and stalker tendencies, she’s pretty run-of-the-mill. And kind of fun. Which is evident by her (romantic comedy cliché alert) immediately attracting other nice, normal, yet fun men. Just one in particular, actually (Greg), who invites her to a house party and ignores her obvious obsession with his friend Josh. She’s not fun enough, however, to repel jealous co-workers (Paula) threatened by Mandarin and those damn New England law schools who can smell her bullshit from a mile away.

Escaping jealous co-worker clutches for long enough to get ready for the house party…

…Rebecca shows up, finds Greg and makes out with him for, seemingly, hours. All with one eye open so as to not waste any valuable stalkee searching time. He does take it like a champ (because, apparently, lady tongue is just… worth it?), but he finally draws the line when she bursts into tears while kissing his manly, nice, and normal chest after finding out that Josh, the man of her dreams who she’s obviously(?) meant to be with forever… has a girlfriend. Heartbroken, kind of drunk, and with the sexy-time line drawn with Greg, she exits the premises just in time to be confronted by Paula (who, yeah, just happens to know where the random house party is because… plausible). She spills all the stalker-y secrets she’s managed to find out about Crazy Becca who suddenly, and reasonably, feels very threatened. The twist comes when Paula reveals that she’s no longer jealous of our crazy ex. In fact, she’s totally gung-ho with her and all of her crazy! She is all in on getting Josh to text a bitch back. And just then, like magic… he does. With a smiley face, no less. Emojis save the day, all is right with the world, and it’s time for the first crazy ex-duet.

The pilot was designed for cable, dropped by cable, then picked up by The CW and re-worked for network television. I can only imagine what we would’ve gotten had it made it to Showtime, but I don’t think we’re missing much. Maybe some nipples during the Sexy Getting Ready Song and probably the word “dick” not bleeped out when it aired. But it still definitely feels up to snuff. I think pairing it with Jane The Virgin was pretty genius on the part of The CW since they’re both very similar stylistically. You wouldn’t think that a series about a virgin accidentally getting pregnant and a series about a voluntarily unmedicated stalker would go together, but they do. So, if you like one, you’ll probably like the other.

Also, apparently, the star of the show (the O.G. Crazy Ex-G. herself) has been a YouTuber for a while. So, check out her channel if that’s your thing, you kooky kids. I’ve never really jumped on the YouTube bandwagon, but I do follow Superfruit. And Willam. And Kingsley. And Miranda. Well, damn, have I jumped on that bandwagon?

Oh, well.

Bye.

#scömìche

Mr. Robinson vs. Mr. Hightower

I’m really not one to play the comparison game. Being truly original in 2015 is, admittedly, a rare thing. I think we have to appreciate originality and tolerate similarity; embrace it, even, if it’s done well. We live in the age of sequels and reboots and reworks and remakes and it can get tiring, I know. So, in talking about Mr. Robinson, I feel compelled to talk about the show it is eerily similar to. That’s The Steve Harvey Show.

Journey back with me to my formative teenager years. Back when Michigan J. Frog was my television puppet-master. Back when we were served this lovely piece of sitcom goodness: A musician in a funk band, unable to make a career out of it, becomes a school music teacher. We’ve got a best friend who’s also in the band, two fellow teachers that fall in love, and our main character secretly pining after a co-worker.

Today, the festively colored peacock gives us the following: A musician in a funk band, unable to make a career out of it, becomes a school music teacher. We’ve got a brother who’s also in the band, two fellow teachers that fall in love, and our main character secretly pining after a co-worker.

The main differences? High school vs. middle school, the actors playing the parts, and what the network censors allow. None of Harvey’s Booker T. Washington High School teachers would have openly moonlighted as exotic dancers. And they definitely would not have talked about Eskimo taints with the principal.

Even with all those taints, Craig Robinson doesn’t manage to pack the same punch with 2015 NBC that Steve Harvey did with 1996 WB. But does he really need to? It’s clear that Robinson has comedic talent, and he’s worthy of carrying his own show. It’s just not clear if this is the show he should do it with. It’s not a bad show and it’s got its funny moments, so “comedic sitcom” mission accomplished, no? I think… maybe, sort of.

One could argue that comparisons are meaningless. (That “one” is usually me.) Any show about a teacher could be compared to Welcome Back, Kotter. Was Dharma & Greg the new I Love Lucy? Or was it the new Odd Couple? If Are You There, Chelsea? was whittled down to “a show about a bar,” it would have never been up to snuff when compared to Cheers. So, two tales of two different decades housing two different musician music teachers doesn’t necessarily mean they have anything to do with each other. But are there enough differences to warrant both tales being told? That’s the important question. Again, I think maybe. Already mentioned in this here post, we’ve got:

  1. Middle school kids and high school kids are both kids, yes, but they are very different kinds of kids. So, there’s that.
  2. Craig’s humor is definitely not Steve’s humor. Whether that’s a plus or minus is in the eye of the beholder. Personally, I’m not mad at an Eskimo taint, but it probably would’ve made me feel icky if Steve Harvey talked about it.

Other than that, we’ve got more characters to get to know on Mr. Robinson. Steve’s best friend, who is his band mate and the school gym teacher, comparably is Craig’s brother and band mate, played by Brandon T. Jackson, and is not the gym teacher, played by Ben Koldyke (who, by the way, has some killer thighs in them short shorts). The object of Steve’s affections also happens to be his boss, whereas Craig’s is a fellow teacher, his equal, who both have to answer to the principal, played brilliantly (in my humble opinion) by Peri Gilpin. There’s also another offshoot of Cedric the Entertainer‘s character who falls for the female comic relief (Mr. Robinson‘s Lovita, if you will).

In general, I think Craig pulled the short end of the stick. I have not seen the original pilot, but it was created by people who did not run the series and it starred numerous actors who were replaced. This, to me, means lots of network interference. Then, it was put on the air for three weeks near the end of the summer schedule. That means “burn off.” So, NBC swoops in, changes everything, then doesn’t have enough faith in their creation to give it a real shot. I think Craig absolutely deserves a show. If he’s stuck with this one, I hope he gets a second season and I hope he’s able to control it a bit more. But if season two is not in the works, I’d be okay with that as well. The Steve Harvey Show came back into syndication this year, so we’ve at least got that. No Eskimo taints, I’m afraid.

(I really wanted to see how many times I could fit “Eskimo taint” into a review. I feel good about it.)