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The Michael J. Fox Show (2013)
Three episodes for good measure, but I am done.
First, it's not horrible.
I'm sure there are people who like this sitcom and it makes them laugh. Humor is subjective and I appreciate that.
I love Arrested Development and Parks & Recreation, but a lot of people don't.
I do not like HIMYM or Big Bang Theory, but a lot more people do.
This show is somewhere in the middle for me. I prefer a single camera sitcom and some of the jokes/story lines really are on the edge of good. Unfortunately, the rest seems like your standard overt set up to punch line that is far too easy to predict. The interview segments have been done to death at this point and should be forbidden in any new sitcoms for at least 7 years.
I do like MJF and think he is easily the most likable aspect of the show. On the flip side, the sister in law is a pointless addition and should be done away with immediately.
I also wish they would focus more on MJF going back to work. There is so much comedy potential in him out and about doing interviews with people on the street that it's a shame they are focusing on the family more than the workplace.
It's too bad, because I really wanted to like this. I just can't see looking forward to sitting down to this to be given the same tired formula I could get anywhere else.
The Awesomes (2013)
Not great, but not horrible.
I spent the last few weeks watching the first season of The Awesomes. Given the people who created it and the people involved, I expected it to be nothing less than great. Unfortunately, it doesn't quite make it there, but it isn't horrible either.
The show never became as focused on one humor style as it needed to be. One minute it would be a clean and family friendly superhero show with middle of the road humor and then the next minute it would veer into a more edgy scenario or joke and change the mood completely. This type of thing can work, but I don't feel it did for The Awesomes.
All in all, I found myself wanting to like it more than I actually did, and that's a shame. Maybe if a season two appears they will become a little more focused the overall humor style and it could become something more akin to wonderful Venture Brothers instead of a slightly edgy Hanna-Barbera cartoon.
I spent the last 2 weeks watching the first (and only) season of Whites. While I enjoyed it, I kept wishing for it to be more. More of what, I don't know.
To me, Alan Davies' Roland just became a less likable David Brent. I kept waiting for a redeeming moment and don't feel like I was ever given it. The attraction between Roland and Caroline was so muted that when it became more overt I found myself asking "Oh, are they supposed to be attracted to each other?"
Darren Boyd did a wonderful job as Bib and I would have liked more of an exploration into the relationship he had with Roland outside of just being his sous chef. I feel like Isy Suttie's Kiki was funny but a cliché and Matt King's Melvin was somewhat superfluous. My least favorite character had to be Skoose. The last episode began a path to his possible redemption in my eyes, but the prior five just set him up to be an unapologetic bully with no charm.
Overall, it was a good six episode diversion and showed promise towards the end at what season two might bring, I just wish that promise had been revealed earlier in the series.
Moone Boy (2012)
Charming little diversion with some excellent bits.
Moone Boy isn't groundbreaking, but it is charming.
I watched the first season over the past week and enjoyed it quite a bit. Considering his young age, David Rawle really shines as the main character Martin who has an imaginary friend, Seán(played by Chris O'Dowd).
Honestly, I was hoping for more from relationship between O'Dowd and Rawle. While the premise is set up and there are touches of what goes on in the world regarding imaginary friends, I feel like it was ultimately unnecessary to the storyline and kind of pushed to the back to make way for the rest of the characters in the real world. Even while searching for synopsis information for each episode as a refresher for this review, the thing you notice is the lack of story lines involving Seán in any major way. Given the basic premise of the show I would have expected much more storytelling involving the imaginary friend. If it weren't for the fact that I like Chris O'Dowd so much and that the rest of the cast really sold the family stories, I might have been annoyed at the under-use of the concept. The rest of Martin's family really grows on you over the first season and you find yourself connecting more with them than you would have expected. I will say that I am glad they did not go so far as to make Seán a "Drop Dead Fred" sort of character, as this would have completely changed the tone of the show.
Overall, I think Moone Boy is a show I will continue to watch when the new seasons arrive in the US. It is probably too late to really focus more on the Martin and Seán relationship at this point, so I hope they continue to make the family people I care about.
Killer Joe (2011)
Dark and disturbing study of the seedier side of America
Killer Joe is an interesting study of the seedier side of life and how far some will go for a paltry sum of $7500 or less. McConaughey gives one of the best performances of his career and the supporting cast keeps up. Director William Friedkin makes a few choices I didn't love (i.e. the dream by Chris of Dottie naked in the hall seemed out of place) but overall handled the source material with a tight and expert touch. Since it is based on a play, the story is very dialog driven and a lesser director could have easily let that get away from them. It's also worth noting that I was pleasantly surprised at Thomas Haden Church's performance and felt he added more to the story than anticipated. It's not for the faint hearted or easily offended, especially the last 15 minutes or so and the abuse doled out to Sharla for her transgressions. I would probably not recommend this to many people unless I knew them well and felt like they could handle it.
Under the Dome (2013)
Sloppy storytelling and too many issues to overlook
I have been DVRing this show since it started. I did not read the book on which it is based and had no preconceived notions about the story or show. I like Dean Norris from Breaking Bad and figured I'd give it a shot since it was advertised as a 13 episode summer series. I assumed that since it was based on a novel, that a resolution would be reached by the end of the 13 episodes. I watched the first 5 episodes on Sunday and Monday and when it was announced Monday that it had been renewed for season 2, I was confused. Obviously my assumption was wrong and it got me thinking about the show I was watching.
Suddenly things that I had dismissed became annoying to me. I did some research and people are claiming that each episode is one to two days long. If so, how could people recover from meningitis so quickly? Everything I've read shows at least 2 week recovery period and Deputy Linda was up and about within hours of receiving her first does of antibiotics. I know it is nit picky, but it's just one example in a series of sloppy story choices made by the writers. Too many poor choices for me to consider giving an hour each week to it. So when episode six starts and a truck happens to crash into the town's water supply because Alice is acting crazy in the middle of the road (supposedly because of her diabetes, but I have had many close family members with diabetes and none have acted in any way like that), I realized it was time to pull the plug.
It's too bad. Maybe if I knew there was a clear resolution I might have stuck with it. Knowing that the writers are now going to have to stretch the story to another 13 episodes makes me realize that more story issues are inevitable and there are other shows more deserving of my free time.
I did not know what to expect when I began watching Frailty. I knew it was a thriller of some sort but once I got into it I found it to be so much more. It was creepy and unnerving in a lot of the same ways Silence Of The Lamb was when you first watched it. Never really gratuitous in it's violence but still suggestive enough to allow you to feel the brutality of it all. I watched with great intent as I wondered where it would all go.
Then the last 20 minutes of the movies showed up and the party was over. I didn't like the attempt at a "surprising" twist and didn't feel that my sympathy for characters that had been fostered by the film were validated. Lastly, I felt they over explained everything whereas I would have rather had it unexplained so I could make my own decisions.
The Cat's Meow (2001)
Interesting but somewhat empty...
While I enjoyed the film I did not feel I gained anything from watching it. It was a bit like watching a community college production and all the people were just so pleased to be playing dress up that I never really believed any of the characters. It's an interesting film for any fans of old Hollywood but not fulfilling enough for me to suggest for the casual movie watcher.
Keen Eddie (2003)
Quirky and cool!
I watched the show last night and was surprised by it's great combination between Guy Ritchie and Elmore Leonard...quirky and cool. It's great to see Alexei Sayle after all these years and here's hoping it's a show that runs for a little while.