Billie, a woman in her 30's want to settle down, have a family. When she tells her boyfriend, James this, he tells her he doesn't want that, so they break up. She goes and gets drunk and ... See full summary »
Tiny, O-shaped Tony Kleinman and his mate, former professional jock Bernie Widman, still a popular womanizer, co-present a TV talk show in Philadelphia, mainly devoted to sports and ... See full summary »
The show is about Vic Nardozza (Michael Richards), a lanky and bumbly P.I., working for McKay Investigative Services. Throughout the show, there are misunderstandings, screw-ups, which get ... See full summary »
Generosity of Eye is the surprising story of a major art collection transforming into education for African American children in the Harlem Children's Zone Inside that story are three other... See full summary »
The original concept of the series was that each episode took place in real time. A timer on the corner of the screen counted down from 22 minutes, pausing in the middle for one commercial break. The timer was discontinued after a few episodes. For the second season, the conceit was abandoned altogether in favor of a more conventional time structure, perhaps due to a combination of network pressure and the difficulties in planning and filming the action so that it appears to unfold in real time. See more »
It was the best of shows, it was the worst of shows
Sorry, let me rephrase that: it was the best of shows, THEN it was the worst of shows. After its brilliant initial run proved it too sophisticated for a mass network audience, the lovely and genuinely charming Watching Ellie disappeared. Now it's back, in a grotesque, dumbed-down version with the same actors playing characters who have the same names and I guess are supposed to be the same characters. The only problem with this is that there is no character consistency; and indeed in the new version there are no characters at all, only are sit-com stereotypes. The 'humor', now that it can't be rooted in the characters (as, again, there are none) is reduced to the utterly predictable and insultingly stupid. (The man Ellie gave the finger to could have been her big break - what a shock! Her boyfriend isn't cheating on her, he's trying to further her career - who could have guessed?!) In lieu of the laughter that will no longer be forthcoming from the audience, the producers have kindly supplied the canned variety.
The original Ellie, as fans will fondly recall, allowed amusing events to happen naturally, preferring a handful of genuinely funny moments in a half-hour to five lousy punch-lines per minute. They didn't even require that each episode end with a joke. Audiences, confused and perplexed by the lack of formula (duh, what am I supposed to laugh at? duh, this sure isn't Will and Grace!) stayed away in droves.
Rather than making 'Ellie for Dummies,' why couldn't the show have been transferred to, say, HBO, where intelligent, laugh-track-free comedies seem to flourish? (Dare I point out that even Fox network, which airs Bernie Mac and Malcolm in the Middle, has recognized the value of the laugh-track-free, single camera, half-hour comedy?) Watching the 2003 version of Ellie is like having dinner with a former best friend who has since been lobotomized. And the food and the service are lousy too.
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