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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Short reviews for this week (for the shows we didn't much talk about in big posts)

One of the bloggers went home this weekend for Easter and has limited internet access, so this week’s short reviews will be few, because the other blogger’s TV viewing won’t be added. We watch many of the same shows, of course. In case you were wondering, she didn't like this weeks' Bones, pronouncing it "weird."

How I Met Your Mother
Barney and his dad lie to each other in order to bond. One of us thinks this show is getting really old and boring. It is at its best when it reaches into the past, references older episodes, or has flashbacks. The current action isn’t humorous. That said, we mildly enjoyed this episode. John Lithgow always does a good job. B+

The United States of Tara
Char finally had her baby. Meh. B-

Modern Family
This week was one of the funniest in a while. We love Phil and Luke. A

Cougar Town (both episodes from this week)
We’re glad this show is back, but these weren’t outstanding episodes. B

Breaking In
Not as good as the pilot and subsequent episode, but still amusing. B

Jeff’s speeches always say it all. And we enjoyed the Pierce/Abed love montage. A funny episode with a little heart that reminded us of some of the year’s high points. A-

Parks and Recreation
YES, Ron, burgers are better. This episode was a great example of just how funny this show can be. We couldn’t be any more in love with it than after this week? A

The Office
“I’ve fallen, and I can’t get up.” No, that statement isn’t about the show (it’s about Phyllis). The show proved that it can still "get up" and be funny this week, with its biting Dundies and sweet pre-farewell to Michael. Much better than last week. And Will Ferrell was tolerable. B+

The Vampire Diaries
It’s The Vampire Diaries, a show that flat-out refuses to churn out stupid plotlines, boring side-stories, or episodes that are a waste of time, so you know it’s going to get some kind of A. How high of an A? We loved meeting Klaus. And Damon’s concern for Elena and desperation for her to respect him upped the central triangle up a notch. A+

It’s the beginning of the end. It’s about time. This show keeps messing with our emotions, making Faux-Livia so admirable. But we like it. B+

Thursday, April 21, 2011

American Idol Top 7 and Modern Family this week

How cute were the montages where the contestants made fun of each other? Casey, James, Scotty and Lauren have a surprising flair for comedy. The performances were good too, with the exception of "So What?" done by the eliminated contestants. That mess wasn't even a hot mess. It was pitchy, disorganized, it hurt our ears, and it ensured us that the right people have been going home.

From worst-to-best:

Jacob Lusk, "Dance with my Father" - When he holds a straight note that isn't a belt, his voice goes into goat warble. You know you're in trouble when you have to play the dead dad card for sympathy votes. He's not good when he's all over the place and he's boring when he's not. Unless he can find a happy medium, and soon, he deserves to go home. "Grace" by Jeff Buckley might be a good song for this guy though. If he promised not to ruin it. Performance grade: D

Lauren Alaina, "Born to Fly" - Aww, we love this song. But Sara Evans has a much more powerful voice than nervous-bird Alaina. She DOES have a big note somewhere. But her very young age is starting to show. This was a forgettable song choice and performance. She's good, but the competition is starting to overwhelm her. We don't blame her. That looks really hard. She didn't mess this song up, but at this point in the competition, and with this group, it needs to be more than adequate. Performance grade: C

Scotty McCreery, "Swingin'"- Our next American Idol played it safe, but it was pleasant. We think he's getting better and more able to stay on pitch. Performance grade: B-

James Durbin, "Uprising" - Did anyone else find this screechy, tuneless, and extremely strange? We love the weirdness, but we weren't into the singing, and we are certified James Durbin fans. Bring back the heavy metal, James. B-

Stefano Langone, "Closer" - We know, you are gasping that we are ranking Stefano so high on this list. But his nasal quality was minimal this week. We didn't even notice it. He DID take his time on the verses. We aren't digging the "sexy flirt" persona, mostly because Stefano is not hot. But that was a pretty perfect rendition of the song. B

Haley Reinhart, "Rolling in the Deep" - This was the first time Haley wasn't pitch-perfect. We heard the sharps. But this was a tough song choice. We wish she had dug deep into the jazz songs of the past and scatted a little like she did in the elimination hour with Casey. We think we've made it clear on this blog that covering ADELE just should not be done right now. She did much better than Gwyneth though. Not that that's hard. B+

Casey Abrams, "Harder to Breathe" - This was possibly his best vocal performance, even though we prefer a jazzy Casey to a rock one. He's so versatile. After the last two weeks, we are officially both back in his camp. A-

Ern is still rooting for Haley or James. Leeard is still rooting for Casey or Lauren.

Side note: Modern Family was really funny this week. That show was starting to bore us with repetitiveness, but it was cute last night. Anything with Phil and Luke is pure gold.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Chat - Primarily on last night's Glee ("Night of Neglect")

ern (11:31:21 AM): Chode!
Leeard (11:31:32 AM): Yes, chode?
ern (11:32:01 AM): Tell us something entertaining
Leeard (11:32:12 AM): ummmmmmm How I Met Your Mother is pretty good this week, as is Cougar Town. And I watched this week’s episode of The Chicago Code again.
ern (11:32:55 AM): I forgot to call Cougar Town and order a penny can :-(
Leeard (11:33:05 AM): Way to go
ern (8:01:08 PM): Offshore accounts! Oh Sue.
Leeard (8:01:53 PM): Umm so 5000 * 0.25 isn't 20000
ern (8:02:06 PM): Umm, so you're a nerd
Leeard (8:02:15 PM): Ummmm no, I’m just not a moron. I love Brittany
ern (8:03:08 PM): She's so obsessed with cats. All of her facebook statuses are about cats.
Leeard (8:03:12 PM): She's so amazing
ern (8:05:07 PM): Terri is pretty
Leeard (8:05:14 PM): I’ve missed Terri. UGH. Gwyneth Paltrow.
ern (8:06:20 PM): Gwyneth is here to butcher the hell outta ADELE
Leeard (8:06:34 PM): I’m seriously not looking forward to it
ern (8:06:50 PM): I'm looking forward to your comments about it, so suck it up and watch it. I think Gwyneth is good in this role, but it's a bad idea to ask anyone to try to live up to ADELE. Rachel needs to not have bangs. Ughhh, Will Ferrell is going to be on The Office for FOUR episodes.
Leeard (8:13:10 PM): ughhhhh. I don't like her (Sunshine) either
ern (8:13:35 PM): What a surprise, you don't like an arrogant person (sarcasm).
Leeard (8:13:58 PM): How is Sunshine Corazon arrogant?
ern (8:14:15 PM): She just bragged about how she was alone at the top and such a better singer than anyone. I thought that's what you didn't like
Leeard (8:14:39 PM): I started typing it before she said that
ern (8:14:48 PM): Why don't you like her then?
Leeard (8:15:23 PM): I don't like her voice
ern (8:15:40 PM): What don't you like about it? The range? The power? That darn clear tone? I want Jesse St. James back NOW
Leeard (8:17:00 PM): Freaking me too
ern (8:17:38 PM): I love Lauren
(A Thor commercial comes on)
Leeard (8:17:42 PM): THOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
ern (8:17:46 PM): NERD
Leeard (8:18:05 PM): I'm okay with that
ern (8:20:15 PM): ok, The Vampire Diaries finale will feature deaths, duh, but I just read that they will be both "momentus and tragic." I really can't think of a single good character on that show that I can live without, except for Bonnie, and they won't kill her because they already did a fake-out
Leeard (8:20:43 PM): Or maybe it was foreshadowing? I kinda hope they kill off sheriff mama
ern (8:21:10 PM): Me too, but I wouldn’t call that momentous
Leeard (8:21:28 PM): Well, depending on how she died ....
ern (8:21:30 PM): Who is a character you think they might kill but really hope they don't?
Leeard (8:21:52 PM): I don't want to think about it. I don't like reading spoilers, and you already ruined it for me
ern (8:22:29 PM): Since when do you not like reading spoilers?
Leeard (8:23:06 PM): I read spoilers for, like, Bones, but not for shows that are crap-your-pants awesome.
ern (8:23:28 PM): This Emma/Will scene is hella-lame. Is anyone still into that couple?
Leeard (8:24:32 PM): Someone please tell Mercedes that she’s being stupid.
ern (8:24:41 PM): She's not. She should have a fresh puppy any time she wants
Leeard (8:25:04 PM): um no. Seeing as how they're trying to raise money, it doesn't make sense to spend money on her demands
ern (8:25:52 PM): Puppies are free at the shelter
Leeard (8:26:03 PM): no, they aren't
ern (8:26:16 PM): Gotta spend money to make money. I want to be carried to class in a giant egg. If anyone were to make that happen, I would do anything for them
Leeard (8:29:10 PM): oh, how did you like How I Met Your Mother?
ern (8:29:16 PM): Pretty good
Leeard (8:29:47 PM): i thought about texting you and saying "just watch the theme song"
ern (8:30:20 PM): For the record, after I finish watching the last Harry Potter movie, I am going to sob for about two straight hours. Grieving the end of my childhood.
Leeard (8:30:40 PM): I’ll probably be doing the same thing. Hopefully the midnight premiere won’t interfere with work.
ern (8:32:03 PM): Harry Potter > Work. PERIOD
Leeard (8:32:13 PM): !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BLAIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINE
ern (8:32:53 PM): I really have to hurry up the plans on that Darren Criss intervention I'm planning for you. I know who is going to be prom king and queen on Glee. Some extra spoiled it.
Leeard (8:36:05 PM): Don't tell me. I love Mike’s dancing. Also, this song.
ern (8:36:50 PM): "Meh" to both
Leeard (8:37:04 PM): He's so adorable though. But I wish Brittany had danced with him
ern (8:37:26 PM): Me too. I love HER dancing
Leeard (8:38:05 PM): ughhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Gwyneth’s version of "Turning Tables" is coming up. I don't want to watch. I want to change the channel after commercials
ern (8:38:28 PM): Please don't. Hate it with me. We so rarely get to hate the same things at the same time, with no arguing
Leeard (8:38:53 PM): Ha. Watch me love it. Just kidding. Obviously that will never happen. Charice, get off my TV!!!
ern (8:40:36 PM): Were you with me and __ and __ when we saw The Hangover?
Leeard (8:41:18 PM): mmhmm
ern (8:41:44 PM): oh're the one who compared me to Zach Galifianakis' character.
Leeard (8:42:02 PM): That wasn't just me ....and I seem to recall you saying you'd memorize his wolf speech
ern (8:42:30 PM): And if we go to Vegas, I will
Leeard (8:44:51 PM): Rachel Berry, I love you. Why does Rachel get all the attention? BECAUSE SHE'S BETTER, MERCEDES
ern (8:45:35 PM): I think they are equally good
Leeard (8:45:46 PM): I think Lea Michele is better
ern (8:46:03 PM): I know you do, because your Lea Michele obsession almost rivals your Darren Criss obsession
(Gwyneth starts singing)
ern (8:46:42 PM): Nice orchestra. They brought out the big guns
Leeard (8:46:58 PM): …..To try to cover up her crap voice
ern (8:47:12 PM): Actually, I'm liking the way she does the verses
Leeard (8:47:26 PM): It’s not the WORST thing I’ve ever heard, but it's nowhere NEAR as good as the original
ern (8:47:47 PM): Dude, this is REALLY good
Leeard (8:47:51 PM): I disagree
ern (8:48:00 PM): I'm downloading it and replacing the Adele version
Leeard (8:48:08 PM): I’m killing you. Please tell me you’re joking.
ern (8:48:19 PM): HAhahahahahA. NO. I'm not, because I am duty-bound to disagree with you, no matter what. KIDDING. That was holler-y and lame. ADELE ftw.
Leeard (8:49:03 PM): Thank you. You whore.
ern (8:49:40 PM): That song was so completely unnecessary
Leeard (8:49:43 PM): I was seriously contemplating not talking to you
ern (8:49:50 PM): Why would the character of Holly Holliday sing at the kids’ glee benefit?
Leeard (8:50:11 PM): To make me want to cut out my ears
ern (8:52:43 PM): Why is Hollywood trying to make Emma Roberts happen?
Leeard (8:52:59 PM): Yeah, I don't know
ern (8:53:14 PM): I kind of liked her in "It's kind of a funny story." But I think it was just the movie/part
Leeard (8:53:34 PM): Wait, is Rachel not singing? Rude.
ern (8:53:39 PM): This had better knock my socks off, Mercedes
Leeard (8:53:44 PM): Love that dress
ern (8:53:49 PM): Me too
Leeard (8:54:48 PM): I don't think this is amazing. I'm kind of disappointed. Mercedes has sounded better. Wait. It’s getting better. She heard me.
ern (8:55:33 PM): Come on. Give us a big note. Bring it home.
Leeard (8:55:48 PM): I have faith. That was good. It wasn't great
ern (8:56:24 PM): It was ok
Leeard (8:56:34 PM): Rachel could totally follow that though.
ern (8:56:55 PM): I like seeing Rachel be nice, but I like hearing her sing more
Leeard (8:56:56 PM): Gwyneth just said amazeballs. MOTHEREFFER
ern (8:57:00 PM): so?
Leeard (8:57:30 PM): So, I like saying amazeballs and she just took that from me
ern (8:57:44 PM): hahahahaha I'm gonna start saying it too
Leeard (8:58:07 PM): please tell me that the Vocal Adrenaline director is going to come out of the closet
ern (9:02:22 PM): Are you gonna watch the royal wedding? I can't be bothered, even thought that Kate seems like a nice girl. I can just google pictures of the dress. Good enough.
Leeard (9:02:30 PM): I probably will, just to watch all of my dreams get dashed.
ern (9:03:03 PM): But that guy is an uggo
Leeard (9:03:11 PM): He wasn't.
Leeard (9:04:32 PM): I KNOW
ern (9:05:28 PM): I didn't. I’m so excited. I'm disappointed that we didn't think of THAT blog
Leeard (9:12:15 PM): I’m enjoying this website. There are some hotties
ern (9:12:30 PM): Surprisingly, yeah. I like the pie charts
Leeard (9:12:52 PM): I like this would-be assassin. He’s my type
ern (9:13:10 PM): He's not my type. I swear you can see the devil in his eyes. Like, he looks evil
Leeard (9:13:29 PM): That's part of my type
ern (9:13:35 PM): Really?
Leeard (9:13:45 PM): Usually
ern (9:14:40 PM): I know we've had this discussion before, but bad boys are a huge turn-off for me...unless they are Damon Salvatore. And that's mostly because Damon is funny. That had to be one of the lamest Glee episodes ever
Leeard (9:23:00 PM): It wasn't that great
ern (9:23:04 PM): Nope. I'm prepared to deliver unto it a C-

Leeard (9:24:40 PM): Ok
ern (9:38:33 PM): We are up to 8 cents (from advertising on the blog)
Leeard (9:38:37 PM): Whoa buddy
ern (9:38:57 PM): How are you going to spend your share?
Leeard (9:39:21 PM): I think I’ll invest it
ern (9:39:39 PM): Sensible. I'm gonna squander mine on gigolos
Leeard (9:39:55 PM): Maybe in 927408 years, I’ll have a dollar

That's about it. Oh, but that Glee spoiler Ern mentioned will be placed in the comments for all those who didn't see it on yahoo news. If you want to know.

Monday, April 18, 2011

New Shows - Game of Thrones, Breaking In, and Happy Endings

Breaking In
Ern: Why can’t they ever let the girl be funny?
Leeard: Because she’s too pretty
Ern: Yeah, what IS that? You can’t be a pretty girl and be funny? That’s total BS.

Except for the above complaint, both of us are really enjoying Christian Slater’s new comedy about a company that breaks into people’s property to test their security. It’s pretty amusing, so check it out if your favorite comedies are lagging (The Office, HIMYM). Hopefully it gets even funnier. We can see that happening once the characters get more established.

This week’s episode grade: B+

Game of Thrones
Your opinion of this one is going to be colored by whether you have read the books. We can only speak for the people who have. The show is very close to the books, and we think the first season is going to closely follow the plot and characters of book one of George R.R. Martin’s series. Fans of the book series will know what is coming and will be excited to see the direction in which the series is going. If you haven’t read the books, the first episode is still enjoyable, but we don’t think you will be able to tell whether you will like the TV series from this one installment.

This is high fantasy, but not in a Lord of the Rings way. In a Sopranos way. Meaning, it’s not a spiritual story or world but a political one, full of backstabbers and plots. Yeah, it’s not history, but for those of you who were intrigued by The Borgias, but disappointed by its execution, this is the show to watch. Starz and Showtime take note: This is how fantasy and medieval stuff is done. It’s well-made, and we will be sticking with it until it leaves HBO, because we already know that we like the story.

Some will need to beware of gore and sex scenes. It’s rated R. We have already heard of some complaints that the first episode lacked strong female characters, but we know that many of the female characters develop and turn into complete and total bad-asses, so that won’t be a concern for long.

Episode grade: A-

Happy Endings
Do you miss Friends? Do you think Chandler should actually have been gay? This is the show for you. It’s fun, and it’s better than the new shows like it (Better with You and Perfect Couples). Leeard likes it better than Ern does. Ern has an all-abiding hatred for Elisha Cuthbert (just like any good 24 fan would). But at least her eyebrows match her hair better in this role. We think this show is trying to pull culture and the media into a future that the makers want to see. For instance, the gay guy is not the stereotypical gay guy. He acts a little more “manly.” It’s nice to see a rounded-out gay character, and we approve. Also, one of the women is not stick-skinny and she is also not comically fat. That’s right, her body is closer to that of a regular girl. We approve.

But thirdly, the show propounds a view that one-night-stands, sleeping around, and looking at porn are normal, accepted activities. To be fair, lots of shows carry this message. Most people in this country are a little more moderate than that when it comes to sex. Most people our age at least think that people should be in some sort of monogamous relationship before they start bumping uglies. Why do shows do that? They try to make the slutty thing seem like the norm. It’s the norm for some, but not most. The only explanation we can think of is that the people behind this show think that this country is too puritanical and they have casual sex and want to influence the culture into thinking that’s what’s normal (so they are accepted). That paragraph probably made us sound like Focus On the Family (an annoyingly frigid religious organization that denounces pretty much everything in entertainment), but we don’t like to see an extreme pushed on culture from either end of the spectrum. We don't mind characters who have lots of sex or even sex scenes. But we do feel like we have to point out to young people when there is an intentional message in a show, so they can consciously consider an agenda themselves.

Still, it’s a pretty funny little show so far.

Episode grade: B