Shameless - A Great Cause
We shouldn’t be surprised that Fiona’s mom spent all the family’s money on coke. What with the addict Sheila took in and everything else, this episode should be shown in public schools to discourage kids from doing drugs. Sheila’s drug addict was so awful but so funny. We felt twisted laughing at it. We feel bad for Kevin and Veronica. It was hilarious when Steve lost Marco, Estonia’s love. No good deed goes unpunished. Ian wasn’t allowed to join the military until he finished high school, but we think they should make an exception. War might actually better for his mental health than living with his family. Jody and Sheila need to get together, officially. They are so dumb that they are made for each other. It was nice to see Fiona planning for her future, getting ambitious, getting herself a good job in management, jogging, and considering business school. Obviously, it was never going to last. These kids are her quagmire. Steve tried to get her away last season, but nothing is going to work. If Lip isn’t going to take his opportunities, then he should take Fiona’s place at home for a while. We feel bad for her. We feel even worse for Mandy. We are surprised Mandy isn’t getting an abortion. At least Monica made a lot of cookies while she was having her mental breakdown.Episode Grade: B+
Alcatraz - Webb Porter
In this groundbreaking episode, an inmate from Alcatraz reappears, kills people, and is caught by Rebecca, Doc, and Hauser. Ern thinks this show needs some sort of love story that’s actually romantic, and Ern never says this. She likes things that are based on themes bigger (or at least more unique) than romantic love. This show needs some romance though, and Lucy/Hauser isn’t cutting it, mostly because Hauser is old and kind of an A-hole. Lucy is really sweet though and we are glad this week's inmate could help her. She needs to learn that it’s laughter that’s the best medicine, not music. What kind of doctor is she, not knowing the basics? Webb Porter gives some truly bad haircuts. We like how hard his first victim fought. If you have to go out, that’s the way. There’s a lesson in this, and it’s “don’t abuse your kids” even though they smell and probably deserve it. This episode dragged a little, but it was otherwise ok. This show may get cancelled anyway. We won't be devastated, but we won't be happy.Episode Grade: B-
How I Met Your Mother - The Broath
This episode had a promising title. We liked Barney’s Broath, his robes, and his monk-chanting CD. We can’t believe Ted Evelyn Mosby broke the broath. He's the worst. Marshall and Lily sound like they have a great sex life…we did get to see the downside of only ever sleeping with one person though. One clever moment in this episode had Ted confronting three college kids that resembled Marshall, Lily, and Ted when they were in college. Anything with an intervention or ninjas is usually a win with us, but this episode wasn’t as funny as it could have been. This season has been really average. Things got too dramatic when Quinn broke up with Barney, even if it did turn into an evil plan. Also, one of us has a huge problem with women slapping or hitting their boyfriends or husbands in entertainment (and in life). If a guy did that, he would be a total monster in the episode or movie. If a girl does it, it’s still abusive. Why did the evil plan even happen? Why is that funny? Oh wait, it’s not. This is turning into a soap opera. We had to watch Ted and Robin fight emotionally in the hallway. What happened to our lighthearted comedy? Then we had homophobic and fat jokes. Original! At least Robin got a promotion. Finally. Maybe we are being too harsh, but we just miss this show being one of the best things on TV. It has fallen farther even than The Office. All of the characters were awful this week. They were dishonest and, worst of all, not funny.Episode Grade: D+
Being Human - Dream Reaper
This whole episode was about Sally losing it and the guys dealing with it. We love Sally with her straight hair. She looks good with either curly or straight. It was funny when Josh was talking to Sally about how Julia has gotten hotter. Where did they find those creepy pillows with the eyes on them for Sally’s dream living room? The whole color scheme (purple and grey) of that fantasy was pretty cool. Of course this happened on the full moon so that Josh, Aidan, and Zoe were trapped with Sally in the house. It was sweet that even though circumstances were dire, Josh and Aidan refused to consider shredding Sally. It was scary when the Reaper spoke through Sally and told Zoe all the secrets. Josh’s idea to change in the fridge was freaking hilarious. We thought Josh would be the first one to lose it and were surprised when it was Aidan. It was cool to see Aidan and Josh fight, even if it was short-lived. Some guys can still come across as masculine when they cry, and Aidan is not one of them. It was funny when Josh fed Aidan…up to a point, obviously. The episode was cool, but it solved almost nothing.
Episode Grade: B+
New Girl - Fancyman Part 1
Nick’s credit score is about like Ern’s, haha. We liked Dermot Mulroney as Russell and seeing a mature guy interested in Jess. He looks a bit older than 42 though. Just googled it. The actor is 48. Jess’ commitment to art and creativity in the classroom wasn’t funny, but everything else about this episode was. We really loved how impressed Nick was with Russell’s office. We were impressed too. We liked the way Jess delivered the line, “Bidet if I do.” The whole Bidet thing was a good idea. Russell is definitely too together for Jess.Episode Grade: B+
South Park - Cash for Gold
You may suck our collective balls, sir. This episode took aim at the home shopping network and their overpriced stuff. What is it with old people and getting swindled easily? Of course Cartman gets in on the home shopping business, because he sees it’s lucrative, and that’s all he needs. If Stan could have just worn the gay bolo tie and shut up, Cartman wouldn’t have found a source of income. The world needs for Cartman to never find his own source of income, other than his mother. Asians never come out well on this show, but at least it’s always funny. Also funny were the parts where Stan and the old people kept calling in to tell the salesman to kill himself. We knew he was going to. When they showed the cycle of how the jewelry was made and sold, the a cappella was a nice touch.
Episode Grade: B+
America's Next Top Model - J. Alexander
This episode was the best of the Cycle so far, but we really aren't digging this cycle. We don't particularly like any of the girls, even though Ashley has the cutest accent ever. The photo shoots, especially the "toddler" one, have been stupid and unfunny. They had Kris Jenner on the show too. Say what? It was funny when that British model couldn't take criticism and left. It was also funny when Tyra told us she graduated from Harvard. That's important. Tyra spent a lot of time two weeks ago promoting Modelland. She gave the girls superhero model nicknames. One was "Illuminati." Dear Lord. We like this show half high fashion and half hot, dramatic mess. However, this Cycle has been all mess. This episode was a little tamer, but it didn't entertain us.
Episode Grade: C+
Missing - Pilot
We were not impressed by this show. It isn't hideous, but it isn't good either. It's Taken with the genders swapped and it's not as entertaining as that movie was. It makes no sense, and there is too much action with too little character development. The action scenes are fun, but they came before we cared about the people fighting. We love Ashley Judd, but we have no time for a show that's this generic and dull.
Episode Grade: D+
We are still watching and enjoying this show. It's avoided being uneventful and focuses on the characters more than the weekly mysteries. We like that.
Community - Contemporary Impressionists
Jeff took medication for his anxiety and got rid of all his self-doubt. Britta worried that without that self-doubt, Jeff would turn into a monster. It’s true that getting rid of self-doubt would make a narcissist more obnoxious. However, self-doubt does not tame the ego. Self-doubt is another manifestation pride, it’s just more unpleasant and makes you down on yourself rather than overtly arrogant. In this society, we say that to cure low self-esteem, we need high self-esteem, and to cure arrogance, we need to think badly of ourselves. The reason we are mainly writing this and not focusing on the actual show is that we believe this is a common confusion that hurts people struggling to be both more secure and more humble. Thinking badly of yourself or feeling shame won’t make you more humble; it will just make you depressed and more focused on yourself. You don’t want high or low self-esteem, you want NO self-esteem. You don’t want to always be thinking of yourself and how you are measuring up/looking. Spending time comparing yourself to others or evaluating your abilities (whether you decide you’re making out well or not) is taking time away from getting to know other people or actually doing something you love for its own sake, rather than how it makes you look. You should say what you think is the right thing to say, not what will make you admired. It’s best to take the mind off the self altogether, if possible, because that’s the ultimate statement that it’s not all about you. That’s the anti-ego. Jeff did not get this advice and pulled a Kanye in this episode. It was pretty funny. We loved Shirley’s fake Oprah Winfrey and Britta’s Michael Jackson. The Chang stuff was actually funny this episode. They are learning to use Chang sparingly. However, this episode wasn’t as good as the last one and was merely ok. We still think this is one of the best comedies of all time though. Stay weird, Community.
Episode grades: B-
The Vampire Diaries - Break on Through
Poor Alaric. But is the real problem gonna be Jeremy? We’re with Damon on Stefan’s eating habits. Stefan keeps falling off his wagon, so he needs to ditch the wagon and find a new way to deal with his hunger. Moderation sounds good. Sage showing up a mere episode after she was first mentioned was awfully convenient. It’s also a little too convenient that there was another White Oak Tree, but we’ll go with it. This show has earned our suspension of disbelief, especially since the many Alaric deaths turned out to be important. Rebekah, you are an Original. Don’t let Damon treat you like this. You could own him with a swat. It’s really too bad that Abby bit Jamie, and not only because he is hot. Klaus, someone might be moving in on your girl… When Sage bit into a human’s arm, it sounded like she was biting into an apple. We don’t know if biting into a wrist would make that same noise. Who wants to try it and tape it for us? Sage looks a little like an older version of Elizabeth Banks. Dancing is foreplay for Damon. He shouldn’t dance with his arms over his shoulders if he wants to appear straight. That’s the rule, most of the time. Unless it’s ballet. This show is so crazy. We never thought we’d root for Meredith over Alaric in a scene. It’s hard not to see her as crazy Melissa from PLL. The third way too convenient development was Abby and Bonnie pulling an herbal cure for Alaric out of their asses. It’s nice to see Stefan and Elena both communicating and working together. We miss that couple. Thanks to Damon, the Original-killing game is finally back on!Episode Grade: B+
We watched Take Shelter, which was a very good movie that we ended up not liking. Sometimes the critics go nuts over something well-made and meaningful, but when it's over, we think, "So what?" We guess it reflected our modern sense of stress and doom pretty well. Certain scenes really grabbed us, there were some definite scary parts, and the lead actor was good. But we got to the ending and felt like we didn't get a proper resolution to all we had sat through. It's easier to be impressed with the quality of this movie than to actually like the movie. Movie grade: C+ Then we watched Attack the Block, which was fun and hilarious. Americans will need to watch it with subtitles because nearly all the dialogue is British slang. It's really funny if you can pick it up, but if you are just listening, we guarantee you will miss most of it. This is in our top three alien invasion movies. Movie grade: A-