New Shows: April 12 - 18, 2014

During a week in which we celebrated our spring holidays by turning the heat back on in our homes, there were a couple of good shows to help keep us warm.

The New Shows color code: red means don’t bother; blue means maybe; green means good; magenta means great.

Comedy Underground with Dave Attell (Comedy Central)
To be fair, Attell begins this show telling the audience that all of the jokes are “dirty.” I’m not a prude; I can enjoy a good dirty joke with the best of them. The four comics showcased in this pilot, all of whom are friends of Attell’s, spent half an hour calling women whores and discussing what they should do (and not do) in the bedroom. When did misogyny become funny? Call me crazy, but I fail to see the humor.

Dave Attell: Road Work (Comedy Central)
This particular comic is known for pushing the boundaries of good taste, so I turned on this particular show expecting to hate it. I wasn’t disappointed. What I did find interesting was that Attell is so intent in living up to his reputation that even he knows when he has taken a joke too far. The audience, on more than one occasion, reacted badly. Perhaps that is what he is going for. Luckily for those of us who watched this and didn’t pay for the privilege, we can turn off the show.

Bermuda Tentacles (Syfy)
Dr. Oakley, Yukon Vet (National Geographic Wild)
Love in the City (Oprah Winfrey Network)

Inside the Hunt for the Boston Bombers (National Geographic)
An interesting documentary about how law enforcement caught the two men responsible for the Boston Marathon Bombings. Although it got a tad overly dramatic at times, the discussion of the forensics and the cooperation among the various law enforcement agencies was particularly well done. The interviews with some of the survivors was, again, sometimes a touch dramatic, but affecting.

Years of Living Dangerously (Showtime)
James Cameron has assembled some of Hollywood’s biggest stars and some of journalism’s heavy hitters and sent them out to investigate climate change. Oddly, it works; although some work better than others. At times, it feels as though the message is too clear: if you don’t believe that climate change is happening, than you are ignorant of the facts. Which is why Don Cheadle’s segment on faith vs. science is very interesting. You probably won’t learn anything new, but the reminder is interesting enough.

America’s Best Cook (Food Network)
Rocky Mountain Bounty Hunters (Animal Planet)

Bam’s Bad Ass Game Show (TBS)
I will let the warning shown at the beginning of this show speak for itself: “Bam’s Bad Ass Game Show features stunts performed under the supervision of professionals. TBS and the producers must insist that no one attempt to recreate any activity performed on this show.” Think Jackass for money.

Clarence (Cartoon Network)
The latest cartoon offering, this one puzzled me as I can’t figure out the age group for whom it is intended. It is too silly for school aged kids; yet, some of the situations and dialogue seemed a bit mature for younger kids. It wasn’t terrible, just terribly odd. If any of you have kids who watched this, I would be interested in their reactions to it.

Fashion Police: The 2014 MTV Movie Awards (E!)
Metal Hurlant Chronicles (Syfy)

Fargo (FX)
Fargo is one of those movies that I had never gotten around to seeing. To review this pilot, I thought I’d better and I’m glad I did. Not usually a fan of the Coen brothers humor, I thought this particular movie was a good story acted well. This series is ten episodes that, like True Detective, will reboot every year. From the pilot, it is clear that the producers are paying homage to the film, but taking the story in different directions.

The first time through, I wasn’t sold. I watched it again at the urging of others who simply loved it and, I must admit, I liked it better. The acting, especially Billy Bob Thornton as the catalyst for all the mayhem, is second to none and I can see the story going in interesting directions. I am intrigued, but not in love. I have added this series to my DVR, but will probably wait and watch the entire ten episodes over the course of a rainy summer day.

30 for 30: Soccer Stories (ESPN)

Lucky Bastards (Esquire)
Moving Country (Great American Country)
Revealing: True or Faux (Sundance)
Unusually Thicke (TVGN)
Web of Deceit (TLC)


Cesar Millan: Love My Pit Bull (National Geographic Wild)

Orphan Black returns Saturday, April 19 at 9:00 on BBC America.

If you are reading this, my guess is that you are a fan of science fiction. BBC America is doing a four part documentary, The Real History of Science Fiction, that traces the genre through film, television, and literature. It kicks off Saturday, April 19 at 10:00.

May Sweeps kick off Thursday, April 24 with the season finale of Parks and Recreation at 8:00 on NBC.

ChrisB is a freelance writer who spends more time than she ought in front of a television screen or with a book in her hands.


sunbunny said...

Surprised you didn't like Years of Living Dangerously more.I haven't seen it, and don't plan to because I can't stand James Cameron, but the way people are people will go on about it.

Heather said...

Count me, too, as another someone who thought Fargo was awesome.

Mark Greig said...

I'm another one who really enjoyed Fargo. It captured the tone and style of the film perfectly, but still felt like its own creation and not a rehash.