A Review Of Everything Good On TV For 2007

by Ed Lau on May 25, 2007

You really know summer is here when just about every good TV show ends and we get into the suck that is summer television. With the exception of Entourage and, as last night, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (which is airing it’s remaining 6 episodes), there will be absolutely nothing of interest. It’s a good thing the weather is fan-freakin’-tastic. Here’s a look back at this season’s best TV shows so you know what to download if you missed it. Beware…there are probably a few SPOILERS, although I’ll try not to give anything important away. Just enough to tell you what’s awesome. You’ve been warned.

Heroes


Heroes was definitely the breakout hit this year with strong performances all around and a captivating, albeit annoyingly slow moving, storyline. Yes, some of the dialogue is pure cheese but hey, it’s supposed to be like a comic book. When is the last time you’ve heard a superhero not speak the language known as cliche? Seriously, I’m going to find and punch Tobey McGuire if I have to hear “With great power comes great responsibility.” one more time. Heroes is a treat to watch despite the lackluster finale on Monday and we have a lot to look forward to next year. It’s hard to describe the show’s appeal but honestly, just watch it. You won’t be disappointed and seriously, you will get into it eventually so save yourself the trouble of having to watch season after season back-to-back and just start now.

24



This was not the best year for Jack Bauer. After an incendiary first four hours that begins with a suitcase nuke detonating in Los Angeles, the sixth season of Bauer Power sunk into, well, more of the same, really. I’m going to guess that most 24 fans like me were thinking the same thing. “There’s no way that would ever happen.” “Didn’t we see this a couple seasons ago?” “I KNEW that guy was a traitor!” Admittedly I still couldn’t peel myself away from watching Jack yell “DAMMIT!” every twelve minutes but something is going to have to change next season. I realize 24 is somewhat made to be a series where each season ends a storyline so new viewers can get in without having to watch all the previous seasons but they seriously need to change the plot rather than just crossing out “Habib Marwan” and writing in “Abu Fayed”.

However, there is a bit of hope as in a recent interview, producers have said that this year was a bit stale and season seven will be a major change for the franchise.

The Office


For a comedy that makes you as uncomfortable as possible, this season of The Office has been strangely touchy-feely with less focus on the mundane enviroment of working at Dunder-Mifflin and more emphasis on the relationships between the characters. It’s still funny as hell since everyone is so insanely dysfunctional but this season has moved the American series far, far away from the original U.K. version. However, there’s still plenty of “Oh god, he didn’t just say that…”. Okay, don’t read on if you don’t like SPOILERS because this one is sort of important.

My only worry is that the series will go downhill assuming that next year, Pam and Jim finally get together. Let’s face it people…everyone is more interesting when they’re single. Take Friends for example. That show went downhill the second it turned from sexy singles in New York to everyone getting together and married. Rachel, especially, is horribly boring when she’s with that dude with the personality of a coat rack. Pam and Jim are fantastic characters and heck, I was rooting for them but now that they’ve actually gone ahead with it…will we still want to watch? I can’t see this going well because without that tension…it’s boring and if something negative happens between them, I’m almost sure there will be a riot in front of NBC.

Scrubs


Another show that suffered a sub-par season (by Scrubs standards…which is still better than 95% of television) because everyone is becoming too normal. People having kids, getting married…that’s not the show that this set off to be six years ago. Personally, I think everyone is getting too successful and that has reduced the amount of weirdness on this show. However, there are still plenty of genuinely funny moments involving super long, funny lists by Dr. Cox and…well, there’s an entire episode where everyone breaks out into Broadway musical style singing.

…okay, so maybe it’s still plenty weird.

How I Met Your Mother


Again, With-Robin Ted is not as funny as Single-Ted-Chasing-Robin. This show is probably tied tied with The Office for me in terms of the funny. Even though Ted is slightly less funny this year, this season has been just as strong as the first. The thing that really separates How I Met Your Mother from all the other sitcoms is the level of thought that’s put into the production of the show. It’s almost like a Where’s Waldo. There are clues and hints scattered throughout each episode that give you a look at future episodes. For example, during Barney’s brother’s wedding, you see that Lily is drinking water while everyone else is having champagne. This tells you she’s pregnant. What’s more important is that after an episode about single’s stamina (single people have more energy than couples that sit around and lounge at home), Ted and Robin say they’re not tired at all at 9pm during the wedding…which tells you they might have already broken up before the wedding (which is set a year in the future).

That and the fact that they put together an entire ’80s music video for the show is simple awesome. Highly recommended here, folks.

The Unit


If you’re a little tired of 24, The Unit is a great military drama about a special operations team in the military. The cast is led by the dude that played President Palmer in 24 and he’s ten times more badass here. Dennis Haybert has enormous screen presence and authority. The second season has been pretty exciting with lots of run-and-gun as well as stealthy black-ops. The third promises to be a big change, though, with the team under federal investigation and one member possibly betraying the others.

CSI


It seems like this show has been on forever, doesn’t it? Probably because it now has two spin-offs but seriously, the Vegas version is the only one worth watching. New York is always in the shade of grey called “depressing” and Miami always has David Caruso over-acting, spouting “witty” one-liners and taking his sunglasses off just prior.

CSI ended what I thought was one of the best seasons, featuring the recurring “Miniature Killer”. It was some serious fun to watch the case unfold throughout the season, ending with one of the creepiest shots I’ve ever seen. This may have been the final season for both William Petersen and Jorja Fox as Petersen has said before that he will not be back after his contract is up (although he will be back for sure for at least the first episode of season 8) and Fox is currently in a contract dispute. Honestly though, I think both will be back next year. I don’t think Fox can find acting roles better than this show and although I think Petersen can, he’ll probably sign on for at least another year so they can end it properly.

Everything Else

I’ll reserve judgement on Entourage and Studio 60 until they’re finished and I can’t freakin’ wait for Top Gear to be back so I can stop watching old episodes. I guess I could watch Fifth Gear but…that’s just like eating “healthy” ice-cream. I know it has more real information but god, it’s just not as entertaining.

in Entertainment

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Michael May 25, 2007 at 12:49 pm

Noooooo…. I forgot that Studio 60 was back last night. I’ll have to, er, “find” a copy.

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Danie May 25, 2007 at 4:36 pm

I agree that CSI’s seventh season was one of the best yet. The miniature killer storyline, and the glimpses into the characters’ personal lives, particularly Grissom and Sara’s, took the procedural from a I-can-miss-an-episode-and-not-miss-anything to a must-tune-in-week-after-week show.

CBS has confirmed that they have Petersen for Season 8. That doesn’t mean that he’s contracted for the entire season, but I expect him to be around for more than a handful of episodes.

As for Jorja Fox, I suspect that her ‘contract dispute’ is nothing more than propaganda to keep fans wondering about the outcome of Sara’s abduction over the Summer. Jorja Fox has said in the past that ten years of television was all she’d do, and season 7 made it ten for her. Interestingly, you say that she’s unlikely to get an acting role better than this show, yet she’s the only one in the entire cast who actually had roles in two top rated TV series before her CSI gig… ER and The West Wing. Marg Helgenberger is the only other cast member that I know of who has done TV before CSI. She starred in China Beach. I don’t think it was a big a show as the ones Jorja has been in though.

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Ed Lau May 25, 2007 at 5:57 pm

I meant in movies, really, not other TV shows as the main issues with both Petersen and Fox is that they said they would not be back on TV after this season. I think after such a successful run on CSI, they’ve ended up a little typecasted and I don’t see them getting bigger roles than here.

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Carl May 25, 2007 at 7:18 pm

Some of the shows I enjoyed last season were:

ER: Yup, its 13th season is over. It’s not the train-wreck it was a few seasons ago, and I just keep watching it. Hard to believe I was like 14 when I started watching this show.

House: My gf has been watching this show for 2 seasons, but I didn’t pay much attention to it. One night I sat down and watched it, and House is AWESOME! I watched the last 2 or 3 episodes… I can totally relate to this guy :)

American Idol: Not the strongest season, but there were some good performances. Lost its sex appeal very early, and we were left with some great female singers. The Sanjaya train wreck was fun to follow

Survivor: Probably one of the better seasons, with twist after twist. And it had THE best tribal council in the show’s history!

Penn & Teller’s Bullshit! If you haven’t seen this show (it’s on Showtime) you are missing a GREAT show. Basically they are sort of like Mythbusters, only without the exploding stuff. Instead they talk about things that they strongly disagree with about American culture, and tear it apart with backed up studies, etc. They make the people they are against look like complete assholes, and they always have gratuitous nudity :D

Ultimate Fighter: This is still going on, but this season is easily the best so far. They seem to alternate between good season and bad season, and this time they recruited about 16 good fighters, and 16 complete fuck-ups. So far 4 people have been kicked off the show, including 3 people last night for being involved in a STREET FIGHT~!

Ugly Betty: Ed, I can’t believe you didn’t get into this! Yeah, it’s kind of a chick’s show, but it’s really very clever, and looks awesome in HD. Great character development, interesting twists, and REALLY witty dialogue. Also if you follow fashion in the least bit you’ll find it interesting.

Japanorama: Another BBC show… The host has a massive speech impediment along with a ridiculous british accent, and I’m not sure if that makes the show better or worse… Anyway, it finished its third season (they are only like 6 eps long). If you are interested in Japan, watch this show. It’s basically a whacky documentary about Japan and the people in Japan.

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Ed Lau May 25, 2007 at 7:44 pm

Japanorama is pretty awesome. Jonathan Ross is hilarious. I started watching it after they did a show with Nigo, the boss of A Bathing Ape.

Ugly Betty will probably be a summer download for me. Same with House. I’ve heard so many good things about them. Penn and Teller are awesome too.

I’m totally over just about all reality shows. American Idol isn’t fun after they get rid of all the terrible people and Survivor…well, I got bored after awhile.

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Wolf Stone May 25, 2007 at 10:00 pm

Some other shows i really like are ‘Grey’s Anatomy, House, Til Death and Travellers (premiere’s Tuesday at 10 i think)…otherwise i agree with most ofthe shows Ed mentioned !!

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krillz May 26, 2007 at 4:49 am

House is awsome, who doesn’t like that doctor?

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krillz May 26, 2007 at 4:48 am

Did they end Criminal Minds in the states?

Anyway my opinion about CSI is that they finally have abounded the o look I guess it all on the first guess and all the clues are found too easily.

Now more psychological aspects are taken into consideration and one episode doesn’t necessarily mean that the case is closed…Something that is somewhat similar to criminal minds but not in any way that it’s a direct copy.

A part from that nice post mate.

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Spud Oregon May 27, 2007 at 2:21 am

Dah! You’ve just spoiled 24 for me! We aren’t on Season 6 yet here in Japan. I thought this new season would see Jack on the streets of China… obviously not, eh?

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msdanielle May 27, 2007 at 6:25 pm

i love zach braff. in my head, he’s my dream guy. i hope i never meet him in person bc most likely my dreams will be ruined, like when i went on date with my dream dj… lol
no bueno…

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Angela May 28, 2007 at 3:36 pm

In defense of The Office, maybe it could turn out like Ross & Rachel on Friends? I agree about How I Met Your Mother. I knew he wouldn’t end up with Robin permanently. Two GREAT shows.

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