We’ve Been Watching… Lots of Things

This going to be a round-up of writing on all the new shows (and some old faves) that we’ve been working on this fall, as we’re going to start with Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.

This show is terrible. I was willing to give it a chance because we both loved the first season of the original, but there i almost nothing about it that I like. I do like the actor they cast as the Knave of Hearts, but that’s about where it ends. Alice seems stiff and unemotional (in spite of the emotion surrounding her circumstances), and her costume, for me, is the only real saving grace. A corset and combat boots? Yes please. John Lithgow also bugs me as the voice of the White rabbit. I also pictured the Rabbit as being very frantic an having a high, squeaky voice. This is definitely not what I get from the character as it stands now. Don’t even get me started on the Red Queen. I don’t know if her face is just unable to emote, or if she just doesn’t.

(I do need to point out here that a lot of people I’ve talked to have been angry because Cora from the original series was a queen in Wonderland, but she was the Queen of Hearts. The Red Queen that we see in the new show comes from the books “Through the Looking Glass” and leads an army of red chess pieces. So, while their are similarities, that is one thing that ABC managed not to screw up.)

There also hasn’t been enough explanation about where Alice’s genie comes from. In the original show, Sydney Glass was originally the Genie of Agrabah, who then accidentally turns himself in to the magic mirror. So, if he is the genie from the Disney Aladdin stories, who is this new genie and what happened to a) Aladdin, b) the old genie to get him sent from Agrabah and c) Jafar, that he needs the help of someone else to solve his problems. There are just too many holes in the story they are trying to create to make it worht my time.

I think the final straw, though, was the Red Queen using the Sarlaac from Star Wars as a possible way to get rid of Alice. That, and the Caterpillar bearing an uncanny resemblance to Jabba the Hutt, made things almost unwatchable for me. I know the Disney (who owns ABC) now has all the rights to Star Wars, but come on. Some things need to remain sacred.

I also understand that making actual, tangible sets for most of this show would be beyond the budget of an ABC series. Blue screen would be needed, but they could have done a better job. The resolution of the characters is not in line with the backdrops, and when the action gets really moving, you can see a distinct difference between actor and background. This show had potential in all areas, particularly visuals, and it’s failed for me on all counts. Poor acting, bad special effects and a plot with more holes than a  cheese cloth make with show earn, for me, a generous 2/10.

Up next, Sleepy Hollow. This is one that both Shawn and I are rather enjoying. The casting for Ichabod Crane is one I find delightful. He’s charming, handsome and doesn’t play his role as someone from the past living in our time with a lot of cheese. His character could very easily come across as campy, but it doesn’t. The chemistry he has with Lt. Mills has a nice pace to it, and I like now the relationship is evolving. And hey, how can you say no to anything with Orlando Jones in it?

I also love the alternate tellings of American history that they writers have come up with. So much of world culture is steeped in the occult, and it’s nice to see it have a place here. This is one I’m looking forward to watching for the rest of the season. It’s either going to stay strong or turn in to a disaster, and I’m really hoping for a strong finish to the year. Thus far, a solid 7/10.

Now, who doesn’t love Robin Williams? I’m sure there are those that exist, but we are not in heat gat camp. That’s why Shawn and I were both stoked to give his new sitcom, The Crazy Ones, a watch. The cast has great chemistry, and it really is a wonderful place for Williams to show off his over the top personality in a way that works. It has the potential to get old if they mishandle it, but so far so good. Sarah Michelle Geller is charming as his hard working daughter, and I think this will be one to watch for a while. Definitely make sure ohio catholic the end credits, as they always include bloopers and extra adlibs by the cast, and it’s well worth the extra few minutes. A solid 7.5/10.

Dads. Okay, this is one we’ve been having difficulty with. Seth Green is a really funny guy, and Giovanni Ribisi works well as his. Ore straight laced best friend and business partner. However, I find that Seth McFarland uses the show, more often than not, to be offensive just for the sake of being offensive. I also get the feeling when watching that it’s not so much about a pair of game developers as it is about making fun of game developers (much the way The Big Bang Theory is not about and for geeks and nerds as it is a platform to rib on them and showcase every possible stereotype). We do have Dads set to record every week, but it’s not one that we are overly eager to watch. Does it have hilarious moments? Absolutely, but they are really too few and far between to hold our interest. This one gets a 4/10.

I have a thing for Karl Urban,so naturally I was really excited when I found out about his new show, Almost Human. It doesn’t hurt that Michael Ealy plays his “almost human” android partner, and that is not a bad looking pair to stare at for 45 minutes every week. The premise is simple: it’s the future, and technology is advancing more quickly than police can keep up with it, so each man police officer is paired with an android partner to help balance things out. John Kennex, played by Urban, gets paired with an older older of android more suited to his personality after returning to work following an injury. The chemistry between the two leads is great and the balance of serious crime plot and humour is spot on. This is a top pick for us each week, and we really hope it gets to be one of the sci fi shows that sticks around. 9.5/10.

That’s about it on the TV front. If anything else pops on to our radar that we feel like giving a watch, I will sum it up for you guys. There are, of course, some old favourites that we have gone back to, but that just might be another post. What have you been watching this fall? What are you loving, and what did you drop from your roster? Let’s hear about it in the comments.


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