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The fall verdict is in. Sort of

We're nearly into November, and opinions about the new fall shows are shaking out. What's interesting is that these opinions are all over the map. That is, except Bionic Woman, because nearly everyone thinks it sucks. And if you had asked me back in August which new show was most likely to be a runaway hit, it would have been that one.

What's wrong with Bionic Woman? Well, nearly everything. We don't know what Jaime can do, or what her limitations are. We don't know what her new job is supposed to be, other than going places for Miguel Ferrer, beating people up, and leaping tall buildings in a single bound. Jaime herself seems like the sort of young woman they should have passed over as a candidate, and I'm afraid I must say the same about the actress who plays her. Her home life with her utterly bratty young sister feels like it was shoehorned into the story. They're also too vague about the most interesting character in the cast: Sara Corvus, the original bionic woman (Katee Sackhoff). The secret bionic government agency keeps capturing Sara and losing her again. I've been hanging in there, hoping it will get better, or that they'll make Katee the lead. I'm nearly ready to give it up.

Of the rest of the pack of genre shows, the big favorite appears to be Pushing Daisies. I was sorry to hear that, because I can't stand Pushing Daisies. Sometimes heavy-duty fantasy just goes right over my head, and I think this is one of those times. I find this show to be twee, precious and surreal, and the narrator's voice makes my teeth hurt. Yet many of my friends find it unique, clever and hilarious. To each their own, I suppose.

I've already stopped watching Chuck, too. I'm not entirely sure why. Maybe because having a guy so important to national security working at Best Buy is just too difficult for me to believe in a show that is supposed to be grounded in reality. Having two other agents wasting their time in similar McJobs while assigned to watch Chuck just makes it harder to swallow. I never warmed to the lead, either; I keep wanting the action to be centered around Adam Baldwin. Maybe he and Katee Sackhoff should be cast together as leads in something else. I'd watch that.

Reaper is the one I thought I'd dislike, but no. It makes me laugh, and it doesn't pretend to be anything other than the silly outing that it is. I like Sam. I like his idiotic best friend. I like the weird and imaginative "vessels" that Sam has to figure out how to use. I also like the way they're portraying the Devil as a tanned, smarmy used car salesman with a big, false smile. Yes, it's no Dead Like Me, and there's an obvious lack of anything serious and touching. I can see me getting pretty tired of it at some point. But for now, like I said, it makes me laugh. I don't watch sitcoms, so shows like this will have to do.

Journeyman, a.k.a. Quantum Leap 2.0, is apparently ripe for cancellation. I won't cry if it is, even though I sorta like it and I think it has potential. I like the way they keep pulling Dan out of his life unexpectedly, leaving mayhem in his wake. I like the romantic conflict he's experiencing as he keeps encountering the love of his life in the past while remaining committed to his wife and child in the present. It also appears that they're going to try to explain scientifically what's happening to Dan. If there's time before it's canceled. Pun intended.

And then there's Moonlight. I keep hearing derisive, dismissive, and lukewarm comments about it, so much so that I feel like I have to apologize for liking it so much. Moonlight is my favorite of all of the new genre shows. I love the more subtle vampire trappings (certainly more subtle than Buffy or Forever Knight) and the flashes of tongue-in-cheek that stays firmly away from camp. I love the vamp/human love affair blossoming between the two leads (which feels more mature than Buffy and Angel and less violent than Buffy and Spike). I love Jason Dohring as the amoral vampire, Joseph. But mostly, I love Alex O'Loughlin, who plays Mick St. John. He's cool, he's hot, he's sexy, and he has fangs. So I'm a girl. Sue me.

So. No obvious break-out hit. Polarizing differences of opinion. Serious apathy, too. Not at all like the last time we got a bunch of new genre shows at once, and all of them were promptly canceled. (Remember the season of Invasion, Threshold, and Surface two years ago?) It's difficult to tell which of these shows will find a loyal audience and stay on the air. It pretty much depends on the patience of the networks, and possibly on a looming writers' strike. Anything could happen.

But please, whatever else stays and goes, could I keep Moonlight?


  1. Ditto to your last comment on Moonlight, Billie! I really want to keep Moonlight, at least, the ratings are pretty good. I started watching this show with no expectations (except that I was excited to watch Jason Dohring again!), but I really enjoy it. I'm still watching season 2 of Buffy and haven't started Angel yet (I'll get to it!), so I can't really make any comparison. And I love Alex O'Loughlin too! He's believable and yes, really sexy!

    The only other show I watch in your list is Pushing Daisies and it was the show that I had voted for as my new favorite show on your poll, a couple of weeks ago. Now, I regret that vote a little. Last week's episode turned me off a little bit. This week was better, but I'm still unsure if I'll really like it in the long run. Sometimes, it's way too cheesy for me, and usually cheesy doesn't really bother me. But I'll keep watching because I really like the characters and the humor.

    I don't watch the other shows on your list, so much to watch already! On that point, thanks for adding Supernatural in your weekly reviews, I love that show and I love reading your reviews!

  2. It's unlike me to disagree with billie - we have similar taste, but this time I would have to say that all of the new shows except Pushing Daisies are disappointing. Most have an age-old single episode plot line with nothing but a single unconsummated love story, come on.

    So, to my humble opinion -

    Bionic Woman - Simplistic and very conventional, I've come to expect better from Katee Sackhoff - I do like the lead.

    Pushing Daisies - Nice, even ground braking, but I do not see this show doing more then two seasons. Maybe it would be even a good idea that this show would do only one season.

    Chuck/Reaper - Same show twice (different networks?), Nice to pass the time. Too bad they canceled Dead Like Me. bring it back and cancel these two.

    Journeyman - not sure I like the main. The show has potential and maybe the writers will take more risks in the future.

    Moonlight - dumb, and not buffy. and I don't care he's beautiful, when we guys like something just because it's beautiful you always say that we are shallow. Maybe you should also apply that.

  3. ZS - I hate to be negative, but I don't believe Billie stated that the only reason she liked Moonlight was because she thought the lead was hot. I personally think that the show has a lot going for it. It isn't as supernaturally off-putting as most vampire shows with ancient politics and melodramatic posing. It doesn't have cheesy special effects and gore. And finally although its derivative it has firm rules about the vampires and follows them. As a vampire show I like it a lot. As a romance I think the leads have a lot of chemistry. And finally as a show it has good writing, decent acting, and solid production values. If the lead is hot... that is perk for young ladies who don't normally watch this type of show.

  4. I never said she watched the show because he was beautiful. I said I didn't like it, and the fact that he was beautiful should not make a difference.

  5. Hello, Billie.
    I'm a fan of your reviews.
    Enjoyed these for "Highlander", "Supernatural" and "Veronica Mars". Going to read "Chuck". I don't agree with you at each point, but like your insight and style very much.
    Are you going by any chance review "Moonlight"? I'd like to see how you describe your impression of it's episodes. I'm sure it'll be worth it.
    Thank you very very much.


  6. Hi, Natalia:

    Thank you for the kind words.

    I've thought about doing Moonlight. It'd be a short commitment, wouldn't it? Not this summer, though -- I'm seeing another vampire this summer named Eric Northman. :)

  7. Yes, it'll be short. Pity. But I'll take it as is. Better than nothing, right? So, I'll patiently wait for the "Moonlight" reviews.
    Billie, enjoy Eric Northman.

  8. Yes, I would also like to see Moonlight reviews. I know it has been a while since most of these shows were canceled, but since I'm already commenting I might as well say what I thought of the shows a few years ago (from what I can remember).

    Chuck - I have to say that I liked it immediately, and not because of Firefly/Jayne/Adam Baldwin. I actually watched Firefly last fall because of how much I love Casey/Adam Baldwin on Chuck. I also love Morgan, Captain Awesome, and Ellie. On the other hand, I don't really like Chuck or Sarah. Sarah kind of annoys me because the only thing we hear about is how gorgeous she is {and admittedly how good a fighter she is}. It took them forever to give her depth. The took forever to give Casey depth too, but his hilarious comments and comedic timing made it well worth it. Oh, and I now completely love Firefly because of Chuck(the show). Chuck (the character) is a little bland. I like his interactions with the other Buymorons, though.

    Pushing Daisies - At first, I was turned off by the twee. Then I fell in love with Kristin Chenoweth and Chi McBride. They are hilarious. I wasn't fond of Ned and Chuck at first. Unlike you, romance really doesn't hit me most of the time. I don't really do much research on shows before I try them, so I had no idea that the man who created Pushing Daisies was also behind Dead Like Me {I still mourn that show}. After getting into Pushing Daisies {it took a few episodes}, I looked into some of his other work and decided to try Wonderfalls. Lee Pace was so wonderful of Wonderfalls that I completely warmed up to his character on Pushing Daisies just before it was canceled. Bummer.

    Yeah, I talk a lot so I'll move on to Moonlight. I loved Moonlight, and this was before I got into Veronica Mars. Unlike the previous two, the fantastic Jason Dohring didn't convince me to try VM, I'd just been meaning to for a while and didn't even know he was in it. I <3 VM now. A lot. I liked Moonlight quite a bit, too, though I wish Josef would have gotten more lines. Mick/Alex O'Loughlin is admittedly hot, but like I said, romance isn't really something I look for in a show. Not unless it is between two truly awesome, charasmatic characters. *cough Veronica/Logan cough* I guess Beth just didn't do it for me. She was okay, and certainly better than Sarah, but not really a character that pulled at my heartstrings.

    Journeyman - I watched a few episodes. They were interesting, but I just never connected with the lead. Or any of the other characters, really.

    Bionic Woman - I knew it was going to fail after just 2 episodes. I found it boring and plain, with no solid storyline. I just had no idea what they were doing, oh and I have to agree that I didn't care for the main either.

    Reaper - I had quite a bit of fun with Reaper. It didn't take itself seriously at all, and that was the best thing about it. I liked Sam and Sock. And Steve and Tony. I loved those demons; they were hilarious. Things got a little rough later on, and it definitely shot off in weird directions. I'm going to miss it more than Journeyman or Bionic Woman.

    If I were putting these in order best to worst when I first saw them I think it would have been: Chuck, Moonlight, Pushing Daisies, Reaper, Journeyman, and Bionic Woman. Pretty much the exact opposite of what you liked, Billie. That is a bit odd because my favorite {current} shows are Dexter, Supernatural, and True Blood. I love lots of the shows you review {minus Glee, Lost, Dollhouse, X-files, Flashforward, and V.} and I look forward to your reviews every week. Sorry for the long spiel, but I rarely comment. I just get too into it, obviously.


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