RIP Karen Sisco

ABC has announced that they’ve changed their mind about Karen Sisco. The show gets no second chance. They might not even air the three finished unaired episodes.

Published in: on January 31, 2004 at 2:49 pm  Comments Off on RIP Karen Sisco  

When bad things happen to good shows

Heather Locklear is going to guest-star on Two-and-a-Half Men.


Published in: on January 20, 2004 at 1:09 pm  Leave a Comment  


The delights of Monk generally rely on character material rather than on the intricacies of the mystery and the details of the setting. But even so, the far-too-obvious solution to this week’s new one (the first of the new season on USA, not to be confused with the upcoming ABC reruns of the previous USA season) combined with some unconvincing (the convenient yet highly unlikely placement of a railway switch) and just plain inaccurate (getting a blood test for a wedding in California, where such are not needed) details simply screamed that insufficient attention is being paid.

I hope this one episode does not reflect the entire season. There is much to be said for this show.

Published in: on January 20, 2004 at 11:41 am  Leave a Comment  

New Drew for Yew

Apparently, ABC has announced that they’re going to dump all of those paid-for episodes of The Drew Carey Show this summer. Oh, okay, “dump” was not the word they used. But I will note that it is common to announce that all of the episodes will be aired… and then discover that one can get better ratings simply by rerunning some other show, so the dumping program gets cancelled and the episodes show up in the syndication package, if at all.

Published in: on January 19, 2004 at 11:47 am  Leave a Comment  


Matt Roush, in his convenient-but-generally-too-Alias-obsessed Q&A column, notes that the current season for Ed is being trimmed to 17 episodes. That suggests that the Stuckyville crew may not be back next year. Which is fine, I suppose, since I think they did what they needed to do creatively with this series. Still, with Frasier and Friends going, the National Biscut Company (no, wait, that’s Nabisco), ummm, the National Broadcasting Company is going to have some serious holes to fill on their schedule, with a real lack of powerhouse shows to build evenings around, and even losing a slow-but-steady show may be a bit of a gamble.

The Thursday night 8-to-10 block on NBC has been a powerful sitcom period in terms of ratings and/or quality for decades now. It was my favorite night of TV watching (my weekly pizza night, in fact) back when it had shows like Cheers, Night Court, and Taxi leading in to Hill Street Blues at 10.

Published in: on January 19, 2004 at 10:56 am  Leave a Comment  

Saturday Slight Live

Following in the path of their generally racist Halle Berry episode, the folks at Saturday Night Live chose to make this week’s Jennifer Aniston another occasion of crude, cruel stereotyping. It really can’t be a coincidence that three different sketches chose to use demeaning caricatures of rural country folks, can it? Between the unfunny hick-themed Britney Spears bit, the country music ad, and the Aooalachian Emergency Room sketch, those fancy NYC city-boys sure showed the world who’s ignerant, right?

Published in: on January 14, 2004 at 2:41 am  Leave a Comment  

Crossing Over

Crossing Over has been cancelled.

Unfortunately, the people behind this series, where a man who claims to speak to the dead actually does lackluster magician tricks and has them edited to make him look psychic, have not been arrested. This kind of crap hurts people at their most vulnerable, and does so for money.

I have refused to watch channels that air this kind of material and are thus regularly engaging in fraud. The folks at the Sci-Fi Channel seem to have no problem pushing this shallow fraudster’s work as fact: "John Edward reunites people in the physical world with their loved ones who have crossed over." Perhaps they ought to learn to separate fact from fiction.

For those who have wondered why an old science fiction fan like me has no comment on Farscape, the new Battlestar Galactica, or various other Sci-Fi channel shows: that’s why. (The network continues to air existing episodes of Crossing Over in the wee hours.)

Published in: on January 11, 2004 at 6:56 am  Leave a Comment  

Junkyard Wars

For a while, it seemed clear that TLC had newer seasons of Junkyard Wars, while The Science Channel had the older seasons, generally before the American market was involved. Following up on the horrible Junkyard Mega-Wars two-team challenge series, TLC is airing (still under the “Mega-Wars” name) what seems to be a new season with the old British host and a new hostess. And then the ReplayTV grabbed an episode from The Science Channel the other night and it was, by all appearances, a new episode, featuring the same new hostess (actually apparently her first appearance.) The production looks a mite cheaper, as though these episodes weren’t particularly meant for the U.S. audience, perhaps because we’d be getting those U.S.-produced Mega-Wars episodes and the British producers knew better?

But whatever the reason, it’s good news that we have these episodes… because TLC is about to bring us another season of their junky Mega-Wars format.

Checking out TLC’s website, it looks

Published in: on January 11, 2004 at 6:33 am  Leave a Comment  

Friends and Parents

You know, it’s sure a good thing that Chandler (on Friends) keeps telling us what a great, natural mother Monica is, just waiting for someone to giver her a child.

Because without his testimony, I’d consider her a shrill, obsessed, immoral woman who would make an absolutely lousy mother. So somehow, the impact of what they’re doing is blunted.

Published in: on January 8, 2004 at 11:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

Flawed Film Concepts #378

I’m in the midst of watching The Man With the Golden Arm from a cheap DVD.

Frank Sinatra plays a back room card dealer who just got out of court-imposed treatment for his heroin (actually, unnamed injectible drug) addiction. At the treatment facility, the doc told him that to keep from falling back into the habit, he’d need to change his career and not move in the sort of circles that drew him in in the first place.

What career does the doc push on him? Drummer.

Yeah, professional musician. That’ll keep him off of drugs.

Published in: on January 7, 2004 at 5:44 pm  Leave a Comment  
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