Wednesday, November 26, 2014

It's not OK

While I'm thankful this week for all the good television I enjoy these days, I'm also noticing a few things they are selling that I'm not buying.

The first of the week was the idea that Alicia's note about knifing Grace's teacher was a joke and a supposedly funny joke.  I certainly don't believe Alicia would ever assault anyone other than slapping Peter which she is encouraged to do.  I just can't see that it was the least bit funny. And it was incredibly stupid to write this threat down.  It was idiotic of Grace to take it to school. And it was beyond ignorant to leave the principal's office without getting the note back!

I'm not sure what kind of point the writers are trying to make with this story.  If a candidate did that in the real world, their campaign would be over.  There is just no coming back from that in my opinion.  Even if she did mean it as a joke, she is joking about serious violence.  That disqualifies her as a serious candidate.  I suppose this was all meant to lighten the mood of the episode and it failed miserably.

We never really knew how Carey was going to come out. One thing this show excels at is keeping cast changes under wraps. I'm assuming Carey will be written out but then I wonder if there will be some sort of last minute reprieve when they return in January.  If he goes, Christine Baranski should be very worried.  I believe that the direction here is for the law firm to be written out altogether. Alicia will win her election, Diane will hopefully get a judgeship if she doesn't die of some terminal illness, Kalenda will be written out we know already.  There's no one left.  We've already lost Louis Canning (Michael J. Fox), Colin Sweeney, and the always entertaining David Lee. I miss these characters and don't think their stories were done.

It is after all The Good Wife not the good lawyer so this is a viable direction.  I just think it has become about supporting Juliana Margulies roll at the expense of great characters.  Everyone has noticed how she and Archie Panjobi are never in a scene together anymore.  I'm all about a show's characters growing but I think this is an overhaul that is unnecessary.

The Millers is gone.  There are far worse things that should have proceeded them off the air.  The biggest mistake was the addition of Sean Hayes character.  If he were on occasionally it might have worked but they forced him into every scene as though he suddenly fit into these people's lives without them batting an eye.  And the biggest mistake - he isn't funny!  He was in Will and Grace as I remember but then again he was my least favorite on that show.

My biggest beef though is how they could include the bit about beheading in the last episode shown.  It was beyond insensitive.  That should have been known when it was filmed but to air it only days after an actual killing was truly awful.  That part could have been so easily edited out.  Again, not the least bit funny and really offensive.

To round out the unnecessary violence, on General Hospital today Anna said she couldn't possibly compare what Duke did (give Sonny and alibi) and what she did (try to keep Faison in a hole in the ground for a year.)  I can, what she did is torture.  She is a police commissioner.  She is sworn to uphold the law. She broke it and all the faith in the justice system.  Anna was one of the best of the characters they brought back for the 50th but I'm pretty much through with her at this point.  She and Duke are both wrong and two wrongs don't make a right.

The good point of the week came when Luke walked into the Q's Thanksgiving pizza party courtesy of 'Natasha.'  (Oh, why does one character get to have two lovely names?)  I kept searching for signs this was the fake Luke but I really think he is supposed to be the real one. Surely Tracy will give his beard a tug just to be sure.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

What happened to Sam and GH Friday

I so thought I was going to be right.  Early on in How to Get Away with Murder it was just as I expected.  Annalese and Sam have a fight and she leaves.  Rebecca shows up to get the data and Sam is after her.  Here comes Michaela with the trophy or maybe they were in the other order.  No matter, I had the players in the right place all set and then Michaela calls Wes and everyone is there. Soon though Sam goes over the bannister courtesy of Michaela so I had it right.  But wait!  He isn't really dead yet and Wes is the one to bash him with the idol.  So close.

The big reveal though came at the end.  It would have been so easy for ABC to have done a promo on the ending.  "Wait until you see the last 30 seconds" kind of thing but they didn't and I'm glad.  Leading up to that I had a few questions anyway. Why would Bonnie leave the guy at the hotel to chase Asher down?  Now I assume that Annalese called her and told her to keep Asher away from the house at all costs.  She probably said something like, "You want your job back. Here's what you do."  Bonnie knew better than to ask questions.

So Annaliese was in the house during the murder hearing Asher trying to get in or she returned soon after and Wes filled her in.  Either way, she couldn't have him come back because he would not participate in the cover-up.  He had no reason to.  The others are protecting their own involvement.  The other thing that puzzled me was Annaliese's long message to Sam.  Why would she want him back?  Well, now we know that was just another part of the cover.

Scandal wasn't quite as surprising.  I thought the VP was in on the bombing from the beginning.  He made a point of going to talk to the kitchen workers.  I also figured the gun Olivia picked up wasn't loaded.  I've always thought all these stories are tied together. There were plenty of good moments (Mellie telling off Liz) and entertainment nonetheless.

The biggest surprise of the night is that none of these great shows on Thursday will be returning until January 29th!  I knew they weren't coming back until the new year but why wait so long.  Oh, yeah, could it be Thursday night football?  Silly leaving viewers hanging and forgetting for over 2 months.

Fortunately GH will not be off that long only the Thanksgiving weekend. We had a surprise Friday there as Anthony Geary is back.  It was anticipated but I'd read nothing about when he would return so I was happy to see him back on the canvas not just because we need to move the Luke story forward but because this means he is recovered or at least recovering from what sounded like a difficult surgery in the spring.

I think Larry is the fake Luke and I still don't think Anna is telling the real story of what happened to Faison.  She was too quick to come 'clean' about where she and Robert hid him and how did they keep him quiet down there?  How did they sneak over to an island unseen and feed him?  Why would she spill this story and implicate Robert?  No, I think something else is going on.

This coming week I assume we will see another Q Thanksgiving.  The house is filling up and Michael has no idea that he is trading one kind of crazy for another.  Pizza, anyone?

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

TGIT: Who Killed Sam

Here's my theory for who killed Sam on ABC's How to Get Away with Murder - or just Murder if you, like me, get tired of the long title.

Michaela.   Why?

Michaela has been the most upset about the murder since the very first flashforward.  She is the one huddled in the corner who has to be talked into every move.  She keeps saying she murdered someone.  Yes, I know this is obvious but there are some far less obvious things that have floated down.  And I think I can build a scene where she is the killer.

First, we know that Asher and Bonnie are otherwise engaged.  We don't know the timeline exactly so Bonnie might have committed the murder and then climbed into bed with Asher but I don't buy it.  She cares for Sam and Annaliese and she just couldn't be that calm even if she often is the Ice Queen.

Wes, what's his name that keeps using sex to solve every case, and Laurel are together at Wes' apartment and are going over to the law practice after Rebecca who is trying to steal info from Sam's computer or phone with the flashdrive given to her by the suspended detective.  They are all far too pulled together in the flash forwards to have committed a murder imo.

So Michaela is alone and she has the murder weapon.  She has to be going to the house otherwise the trophy could not be the murder weapon. I think she is either searching for her fellow students to try to become part of the study group or more likely she wants Annaliese to review the prenup.

My theory is that she arrives just before the other three but after Rebecca is on the scene.  Sam has caught Rebecca trying to get information electronically and is assaulting her (based on a brief scene in the previews).  Michaela jumps into action and hits Sam on the head with the trophy.  The other three come in and the coverup begins.

Simple, maybe too simple but it is my theory.

Part of the reason I suspect Michaela is also that we found out something about her in the last episode we didn't know or at least I didn't.  Michaela is poor.  She dresses nice, acts like she is entitled but according to her maybe-soon-to-be Mother-in-law she isn't.  Michaela talked about her bespoke Vera Wang gown that she had bought.  She wants to be rich but apparently she isn't.  Just because she is poor doesn't make her capable of murder but it gives her a mystery that might reveal a past which could be used in her defense later on.  Again, I'm relying on them using some stereotypes and I hope they don't go there but it is my current theory.

Whoever is the killer one thing I do know, the show is well-done. The fact that it could conceivably be any number of people and we just don't know yet is a testament to the writing, directing and acting of this ensemble.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Not the sum of its parts

I enjoy watching Nashville.  I like the cast, I love the music.  I like the setting and the pace.

I just wish the storyline writers were as good as the songwriters.  The end result is that this show just isn't as good as the sum of its parts.

The problem I believe is that the storylines don't intersect.  This is real life but it doesn't make for good TV.  The characters cross paths in brief one or two line scenes and then go off for their own stories - so many stories where with all the music, there just isn't enough time to tell them all.

The most interesting story is Juliette and Avery.  But then Juliette has been the most interesting character from the beginning. Her backstory and personality give her a rich character you can do almost anything with. Plus Hayden Panitierre is the best of a great ensemble. Jonathan Jackson has finally been given the scenes he deserves.

The dullest story is Gunner and his new found son but then Gunner has been the least interesting character to me since the beginning.  He was briefly watchable when his brother turned up but mostly he is just boring.  Add in Zoe and you get more than twice the boredom.  I have less than zero interest in the child or his mother.

Scarlett is the most out of touch with the rest of the cast even her uncle whose house she lives in.  Why did they keep her on if they weren't going to really do anything with her regarding the other stories?

Rayna's hard work at keeping her career alive, her record label afloat, and satisfying her family is engaging enough.  The issue here is that I don't care for Luke at all so I'll be happy when their relationship blows up.  I have no confidence in a wedding ever taking place especially since we saw her in her wedding dress prior to the altar.  That is always a sign no wedding will take place,

When the season started, I thought they had a great story with Will.  Would he come out?  Would he be outted? How would this affect his career?  I don't know that this has ever happened in country music so I was anxious to see where it would go but it is going no where.  Now they are trying to make us like Layla - another character we could be rid of.

Hopefully Deacon's girlfriend-on-the-road is gone.  I don't remember her name.  I don't care.  The fact that I almost forgot to talk about Deacon - the heart and soul of the show - at all is indicative of the issues with the show.

Someone needs to review all the characters and stories and get this show on track. You have a great concept, cast, setting and musical talent.  What you need is good showrunner.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Coming clean

The last couple of weeks of General Hospital has brought some important storylines to a climax.  What has surprised me are the people who seem to be coming clean about what they knew.

I found Franco's reveal delightful.  Carly has used Michael as a reason for every selfish thing she has ever done.  She reminds me of Maura West's character on ATWT also called Carly.  She is supposed to be considered a good mother but I think she is far from it.  Today she said, she 'just cared about her kids.'  If that were the case, she wouldn't have covered up what Sonny did.  She puts herself in jeopardy of going to jail and where does that leave Josslyn - who is already one step from juvie anyway.

Kiki confessed and with her, Morgan had no choice but to come clean to that they had known Sonny killed AJ for about a month.  Finally, Rosalie admits why she was hanging around Michael so much.  And Rosalie is the one Michael chooses to forgive.  Is it because she didn't go as far as she was being blackmailed to do or was she just convenient?  It was a cliche I could have done with out - getting drunk and sleeping with someone to ease the pain.  A poor end to an otherwise well done story.

Franco really didn't commit a crime as far as I can tell unless it is a crime to tape someone without their knowledge and I guess that depends on the state.  We are back to bad Franco and I enjoy him more this way.  He's helping Nina for now.

Watching Michelle Stafford, Donna Mills, and Maura West has been the biggest treat of all. There scenes were amazing.  GH has done some great casting.

Speaking of, I think the new Jason is a treat to watch as well.  I'm suspecting we will have two new/old Quartermaines soon.  I predict that Michael will take the Q name and Jason's memories will return of some of his early life.  I don't see them fitting Jason into Sonny's world as Sonny has plenty of other problems right now.

Disappointed to learn than Felix is now dropped to recurring.  I love his character and he deserves so much more than being Sabrina's sidekick. Mercifully Sabrina has been absent for days.  She can return to Puerto Rico anytime she likes and I'll just forget she ever returned and tried to make Ava miscarry. Really, no one would really notice.

The Luke reveal seems to be stalled in a slow detour with Ned's father who I really care nothing about.  Why do we keep revisiting these characters apparently long time viewers barely remember?  I've heard nothing of when Anthony Geary will return.  I hope he is alright. His 6 months should be up and putting him back on set.  Perhaps there was a delay and this is part of that delay.  Personally, I'd rather Tracy just think he has disappeared and get her pulled into another storyline until Luke can return.

While GH has such a wonderful cast, I do wish they would use just a tiny bit of money for the set.  That hotel style room was supposed to be Monica's?  It wasn't the least bit feminine or personal.  The office sets are obviously from decades ago.  A few upgrades should not be that expensive.