I don't post much about TV, because some of the shows I watch most religiously are - well, a little embarrassing. It's like enjoying the music of Barry Manilow (which I insist I do not and only raise here as an example). I mean, it may be music that moves you, but it's not something you want the rest of the world to know.
But I'll come clean here. There are some programs I watch every week, and I do not like to miss them and I do not like you to come into the family room and yakyakyak during them because I'm old and cranky and hard of hearing and if you start blabbing during MY SHOW I will, without regard to how ill-mannered it may seem, snatch up the remote and hit the VOLUME button UNTIL IT IS SO LOUD THAT IT FEELS LIKE YOU ARE TRYING TO HAVE YOUR CONVERSATION IN A ROCK AND ROLL BAR, SO LET'S MOVE OUT OF THIS ROOM BECAUSE DAD'S AN ASSHOLE. Thank you, yes, going to another room would be lovely.
Herewith a (mostly) complete list of the shows I watch every week, and some recent thoughts on them.
Tuesday: American Idol. Yeah, this is one of those ones I'm a bit embarrassed about. I'm gonna say it's one of those shows that either flips a switch inside you or it doesn't, and I get it when people say it's pointless and stupid and I am not much concerned with changing their minds and don't really understand why they believe they can change mine.
I like it. It entertains me. I settle into a performer I really enjoy *coughKatcough* and discover others that annoy me, and now I have something at stake and someone to cheer for. All this and the weekly possibility that Paula Abdul will actually melt down and have to be carted off to rehab before my eyes. What's not to love?
Oddly, the results show holds little interest for me - often, I'll miss it entirely and just snag the results the next morning. I knew who was going to be voted off, anyway.
Enjoy reading recaps by Cat, who loves the show and is endlessly entertaining about it, and I like contributing my two cents and having other people chip in and we all have a big geek-fest. Hey, I'm not out there murdering kittens. It's a TV show.
Wednesday: The Amazing Race. I began watching this show in about Season 4 and it has been an absolute will-not-miss show ever since. It has pretty much everything I love in a TV show: quirky characters, competition, fascinating locales, romance, intrigue, anger, suspense, assholery, awshucksery, and most of all, unpredictability.
Sherri actually auditioned for the show, and I was so hoping she and her partner would get chosen. How cool would it be to know one of the contestants? I'd audition in a heartbeat for this show or for Survivor (more about that further on), except I'm not allowed to, being a Canadian and all. Bastards.
It's one of those reality shows that I think I could do well at with the proper partner. My daughter Erin would be my choice - she speaks French fluently, and can add some Spanish and Japenese into the mix, she's strong and tough and resilient and funny and an excellent navigator. She also takes no shit from me, which I think you need. I couldn't take my other daughter Allison because they don't allow you a separate knapsack for shoes.
Recently I've been watching a DVD of Season One of the series, and it's a little disconcerting to see how much less it has become. in Season One, teams had to actually figure out how to get from Point A to Point B, and the physical and mental challenges were very tough. Now I watch and it's like "In this challenge, teams will have to ... ride in a CAR!" Umm ... my grandmother can ride in a car. And she died in 1993.
(And here we do not speak of the hideous "Family Edition" Season of The Amazing Race, which cost the series countless fans, was horridly annoying, and may have been the worst brand-altering decision since someone in Atlanta said "Hey, I have an idea ... we'll change the formula and call it NEW Coke! What could go wrong?")
So it's not what it was, but it can still have me on the edge of my seat, as it did this week, with three teams in a footrace to the elimination mat. Love it. Don't call Wednesday at 9. Seriously. My family knows to take a message.
Thursday. Survivor. Essentially, the same show it always was, and I still love it for all the same reasons. They don't fuck with the formula much, and I appreciate that.
This season had a nice twist - a hidden Immunity Idol that could be presented at any time as a sort of "Oh, no you don't ... TA-DAAA!" deal. interestingly, it hasn't come into play, because the contestant who found it has become an immunity monster, winning five in a row.
Also Thursday: Two of the best comedies on TV, for my money: My Name Is Earl and The Office. Earl is such a fresh concept and the characters are so quirky, I just find it irresistible. Strong main character and a really, really fine ensemble with Jaime Presley as the trailer trash ex and Ethan Suplee as the idiot/savant brother Randy.
The Office is - to me - just the best program on TV, is all. Now, I concede your mileage may vary here. Its style of comedy is not to everyone's taste, relying as it does on enormous, excruciatingly uncomfortable silences and low-key, throwaway delivery. But I just find it mesmerizing and jaw-droppingly funny.
It is also a charming, tender story of ill-fated (possibly? probably? maybe?) inter-office romance. In fact, I'd argue that it's more about the two supporting characters and watching their souls try to connect than it is about the office itself and the boss-employee relationships. I find The Office to be utterly sweet, utterly positive, hilariously funny, and brilliantly written.
Ten bucks says it gets cancelled. Bastards.
So, how about you? I know Laura loves Lost .(which, after the last episode, was hailed as "the best anti-drunk driving PSA EVER"). I know that Cat is fairly deeply and geekily invested in Veronica Mars. A lot of you love Grey's Anatomy and House (doctor shows, like cop shows, just leave me cold. I've tried. I just .. don't find them interesting) And some may even admit to enjoying Desperate Housewives, although I reserve the right to mock you for it.
But you tell me - what boat are we missing? What should we all be watching?