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Back to the Script
2006-10-23 08:24
by Mark T.R. Donohue

I didn't watch very much scripted television at all last week, which is a bit unusual. I don't know how many other people are with me on this, but I find the new Monday Night Football announcing team completely repellant. I can't stand them. I love "Pardon the Interruption," but Tony Kornheiser trying to behave himself is no fun whatsoever. And what is up with the constant comments about guys who are on his fantasy team? How many receivers does he start in this mythical league, 20? The main problem is that Joe Theismann is a) a moron and b) has no sense of humor about it. It's OK to be a moron so long as you can be laugh at yourself every now and then. Tony Siragusa is excellent at this. But Theismann rarely picks up on it on the rare occasions Kornheiser tries to tweak him. Nobody on the entire broadcast team has any interest in saying anything constructive about the game, so you might as well just give them a miss and put on some light music. For my part, since Week 1 I have been watching "How I Met Your Mother," "Heroes," and "Studio 60" and I don't miss football at all. Last Monday I foolishly went back in there because the Bears were on, and even though it was a great game I kind of wish I had just listened to the Bears radio guys over the web and TiVo'd my shows. Now I'm all behind.

"Heroes" has reached phenomenon status, and here's how I know for sure: my friend Ken is watching it. My friend Ken hasn't reguarly watched anything on TV that wasn't animated, dubbed badly from Japanese, or both since "Next Gen" went off the air. And I didn't even have to tell him to watch it, he found it on his own. Bizarrely, this development comes coupled with the announcement that the network of "Heroes," NBC, has decided (or maybe they haven't) to stop showing anything besides game shows and reality programs for the 8-9 hour all week long. I have absolutely no idea what to think about this. I guess it makes programming the TiVo a little easier. I've been living Howie Mandel-free for a long time now and I sure don't want to go back down that dark tunnel.

With the World Series, the NFL, and the PS2 game Bully (yeah, I bit the bullet and bought it, I'll write about it when I finish it) taking up most of my time, I've caught up with my shows kind of piecemeal through the week when time allowed. I still have two episodes of "Lost" to sift through and I don't really want to make that leap until I have time to really digest them. The season premiere really kind of restored my faith in the show and I want to pay attention. The latest "Veronica Mars" was solid. When Joss Whedon wrote a little tribute to the show for Entertainment Weekly (I think) the most insightful thing he said was that Veronica's biggest strength is also her biggest flaw; because she can always find out what's really going on, she has to know even when she'd be happier leaving it alone. This came up with her mother both in the first season and the second season. In the third season, Veronica's pathological need to investigate is providing the necessary tension in her relationship with Logan. Meanwhile, Francis Capra is back, and he looks like he did some time in prison as did his character, Ed Begley Jr. has showed up in the obligatory "Mars" stunt casting coup of the season as the college dean, and Keith is still the best dad ever.

Quickly: I can never quite parse what is going on with the Adult Swim schedule, but it seems like new episodes of "12 oz. Mouse," "Venture Brothers," and "Robot Chicken" have been showing up on my TiVo lately, or at least ones I haven't seen, and they are welcome. I like those commercials for the HDTV where everyone's standing up and pointing at the missing golf ball. Then, of course, we had the whole Kenny Rogers thing which was like life imitating ad. I cannot possibly recommend the new record by Denver's Everything Absent or Distorted more highly. It is fantastic. You will listen to it over and over and then afterwards it will continue playing in your head. You can buy it on cdbaby or on iTunes and I really think you should.

2006-10-24 10:13:24
1.   4444
I noticed a few new looking adult swim shows showing up on my tivo as well. Was excited to see a new aqua teen hunger force, but the ep was just kinda eh. I'm not familiar with a handful of those other shows that they show on Sunday nights or whatever (I'd been snagging the recent metalocalypses and robot chickens), but I popped a single shot record on all 4 of the others to check'em out.

I've seriously considered recording adult swim shows I have no real interest in watching just to catch the between-show black screen/white text bumps. Good stuff.

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