Home Featured TV Shows All TV Shows Movie Reviews Book Reviews Articles Frequently Asked Questions About Us

The new fall season so far: Bionic Woman, Journeyman, Moonlight, Reaper, and Chuck

Bionic Woman was the show everyone was waiting for. And it was worth the wait. Much like the brilliant Battlestar Galactica (and brought to you by the same people), Bionic Woman isn't a sequel or a spin-off; it's an edgy, gritty, dark and complex re-imagining of a much simpler and more straightforward show from the past. The most interesting premise, for me, anyway, was that a bionically enhanced human being can be impossible to control. Fascinating, and with potential for exceptionally cool drama.

Michelle Ryan holds her own as the damaged and re-built Jamie Summers. But she has already been upstaged by the charismatic Katee Sackhoff as the disturbed and frightening original bionic woman, Sarah Corvus. Katee Sackhoff is just outstanding as Starbuck on Battlestar Galactica; she's so good that she steals practically every scene she's in, and Sarah is a great character for her. I can't help but wish she was playing the lead. Sorry about that, Michelle.

I expected Journeyman to be a lot like Quantum Leap, and by golly, it is. But like Bionic Woman, it's edgier, and I like it more than I thought I would. I liked how he kept getting unexpectedly yanked out of his current life into the past, and how he managed to re-enter his past life to get clothes, money, information. Why is it happening, and what does it have to do with his dead girlfriend from Day Break who isn't dead? (And is that connection to the late, unlamented Day Break an omen of early cancellation?) I'm ready to tune in next week. I just wish I liked the lead actor a little more.

Speaking of liking the lead actor, the new show I thought I'd hate is the one I like best. Did they make Moonlight just for me? You can never tell when an actor in a certain role is going to connect with you, but Alex O'Loughlin as ninety-year-old vampire Mick St. John is my exactly my cup of tea.

Yes, Moonlight is derivative; in fact, it's like a fantasy show smorgasbord. A little Angel, a little Forever Knight, a good dose of Highlander. They even got a touch of Veronica Mars in there with the wonderful Jason Dohring as Joseph, who is sort of what Logan Echolls would be if he were a four-hundred-year-old vampire.

But the core of Moonlight is star-crossed romance, and I am such a sucker for those. Mick saved the life of a little girl twenty-two years ago, and has watched over her ever since. Now she's a reckless, enthusiastic reporter who gets into trouble (so you can add Superman to that list of derivatives.) I can see the angst-filled Buffy/Angel-flavored love affair coming down the pike. I like this show so much already that I bet it's going to get canceled bright and early.

Because let's face it. Most of the hit genre shows on major networks are only marginally sci-fi or fantasy, like Lost and Medium. Bionic Woman fits into that criteria, and it smells like a hit. And that's good, because I like it a lot. But shows like Journeyman and Moonlight tend to speak to a certain type of viewer. I'm that type, but most of America isn't. But Heroes has given me hope. It's the exception, an extreme comic book fantasy that is also a monster hit. So maybe it's time for shows like Moonlight to make it big. Hope springs eternal.

Moving right along. Reaper made me laugh out loud over and over, mostly at Sam's Jack-Black-like best friend, so I'll probably keep watching it. But it's really just a rip-off of the unfortunately short-lived and much better done Dead Like Me. (I miss the Waffle House. I really do.) Maybe Reaper will develop depth and come into its own. And maybe silly is enough. You never can tell.

Chuck has potential, but it didn't resonate for me. Maybe because it's too much like The Forty-Year Old Virgin. Maybe I'm just sick and tired of the hopeless-nerd-lands-unbelievably-gorgeous-woman plot. Maybe because when I heard Adam Baldwin was in it, I was hoping he'd be the lead. Maybe because it's airing opposite Prison Break.

Let me tell you, Chuck is not going to pull me away from Wentworth Miller. Sorry about that.


  1. Wow, your comments about Moonlight really make me want to see it. I stayed clear of the pilot because of the bad reviews.

    I liked Chuck a lot, and thought Reaper was okay. I didn't laugh as much as I thought I would.

    I actually was kind of disappointed with Bionic Woman. Yes it was dark and gritty (my favorite type) and has the amazing Katee Sackhoff. But I thought the lead wasn't a very good actress, and the dialogue was sub par.

    I have Journeyman taped and have yet to see it. I haven't been too impressed with this season's new fall shows, but I'll wait and see before making final judgment. Maybe I'll fall in love with one over time.

  2. Speaking of Bryan Fuller shows Dead Like Me and Heroes, I saw a preair copy of the Pushing Daisies pilot and although a bit twee at times, it's excellent. I have a bad feeling, though, that it's going to go the way of Dead Like Me and Wonderfalls and get cancelled before its time.

  3. great comments Billie. Moonlighting is the one I haven't seen yet and it is a free download on iTunes, so i'll check it out

  4. I'm glad to read your reactions to some of the new fall shows, Billie. You and I seem to be going in completely opposite directions with the new stuff! :)

    I never even gave Journeyman or Moonlight a chance. They were on my initial list, but since the reviews were mixed and my schedule was way overloaded, I decided not to try them out.

    My husband and I love Reaper and I've been enjoying Chuck. There's nothing too dark or substantial about either of them, and I'm kind of liking the break from intense drama. Reaper makes me laugh out loud repeatedly.

    Prison Break isn't really working for me so far this season. It's had some good moments, but overall, I'm a bit tired of it all. I find myself looking forward to watching each week's episode about as much as I do cleaning the bathroom. I was initially excited by the new setting and obstacles, but it hasn't really come together for me yet. I may not stick with it much longer.

    And as for Bionic Woman, I thought the pilot was sort of "meh." I think I was expecting more because of its pedigree. But I found it a bit murky, and even dull at times. The lead actress is very pretty, but I'm not overly impressed with her acting abilities yet. (I imagine it is hard holding your own with Katee.) The character I found most interesting was the blond operative (played by Molly Price, I think). The hubby and I are going to give it at least two more episodes before we pass final judgment. Many good shows have pretty cruddy or so-so pilots. We'll see if things improve.

    I'm also taking a "wait and see" attitude with Pushing Daisies. I just finished watching the pilot. It was interesting and even amusing at times. But the schmaltz factor was way over the top. I like that kind of thing on Ugly Betty, but here it seems more off center and forced. I'm not sure if I'm up for Ned and Chuck's goo-goo eyes and fake touching every week. But I'll certainly give it a few more weeks to win me over.

  5. I also like Moonlight and I'm disappointed that people are so pitted against it without having given it a chance. I really hope it survives and we get to see how it plays out.
    Bionic Woman, too, is great and Katee Sackhoff would no doubt do a fantastic job in the lead, but we know that she has other places to be!!


We love comments! We moderate because of spam and trolls, but don't let that stop you! It’s never too late to comment on an old show, but please don’t spoil future episodes for newbies.