James Knows…TV

Reason #341 Why Television and I Broke Up: Roommates

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I know what you’re thinking. Why should I care about a show on ABC Family? Isn’t that place run by a bunch of Mormons or something? Sort of. Yes, it’s owned by Disney, but I think that the network has grown a great deal in recent years with shows like Kyle XY and The Secret Life of the American Teenager (Full disclosure: I’ve never seen either of those shows, or anything else on ABC Family, but they seem alright), the latter actually portraying stuff like teenage pregnancy which is a big step for a Disney owned property aimed at kids / teenagers / young people. I’m surprised they even acknowledged that that stuff happens.

Anyway, I heard about this new show Roommates after hearing that Felicia Day was going to be guest starring on it. After seeing Day in the amazing Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, I figured I’d at least check it out…then I saw this trailer before a movie a few weeks ago and I just can’t do it. Here’s a commercial for the show.

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Who’s Using Who Here? [Dollhouse]

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Yes, I know I skipped last week. I was busy, but hey, I did the other six episodes, right? Anyway, I thought this episode was pretty good. Since the awesome Man on the Street episode, Dollhouse has just been spot on. I think that might have something to do with the fact that beginning with that episode, Eliza Dushku hasn’t been the “main” character of the show. The supporting cast has been brought up to really balance the show a bit more. Let’s go!


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Now That’s What I’m Talking About! [Dollhouse]

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I said last week that I hated it when shows or comics said that stuff gets better after a certain amount of episodes. To me, that’s pretty lazy and I rarely give the time to see if they’re right. Instead, I drop it because I’m not impressed by what I’m seeing. I am so f’ing glad that I stuck through with Dollhouse because last night’s episode (the sixth of the series) was awesome. I know I throw that word out a lot, but this episode was seriously great (and for some reason it’s not up on Hulu yet so I can’t embed it here). Anyway, let’s dive in.

“Man on the Street” took a regular episode and split it up with clips from a psuedo-documentary about the Dollhouse where average passersby were asked of their opinion on this modern urban legend. This worked really well because it served as a great juxtaposition to the events of the episode, of which there were many. I had heard talk that this episode is supposed to be the game changer and it did not disappoint. One thing I was a little surprised by were the no-name actors that were used for the documentary scenes. You’d think if Whedon and Co. are at all concerned that the show might not continue they’d throw in a cameo from one of their many friends. Toss in Amber Benson or Seth Green or something. I’m sure they’d be up for it. (more…)

New Boss Brings a Lot of Wha-Huh? [The Office]

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I meant to write an article about last week’s episode but I forgot so now I’m diving into this week’s “New Boss.” Michael is in the middle of preparing the festivities for his 15th Anniversary celebration when he’s interrupted by Charles, the replacement for Jan and Ryan’s position who actually wants to do work like a normal person. A huge conflict follows and some surprises round out the episode. This left me with a lot to talk about.

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Time Hoppin’ Island Hoppin’ [LOST]

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I’ve been so hesitant about this season of Lost because of all the time travel mumbo jumbo, but I have to say that I’m really digging these episodes. The season has become my second favorite behind the first season. Time travel is always something that can really mess up a show, but miraculously, the Lost writers have weaved this tale in between existing continuity to make me excited about history. Let’s take a gander at last night’s episode, Namaste.

So Sun is still around, but she’s in the future…or the present with Lapidis and Ben and Jack’s Dad. Meanwhile, Jack, Hurley, and Kate have “joined” the Dharma Initiative under the watchful guise of Sawyer (aka: LaFleur). Jin freaks out in search of the plane which is currently thirty years in the future and Locke is nowhere to be seen. Let’s talk about some of this stuff though. (more…)

Did You Get a Man Reaction Here? [Dollhouse]

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Another week, another episode of Dollhouse, another engagement gone wrong. Is anyone else seeing a pattern here yet? I understand the urge to start the series with a few stand alone stories to allow the viewer to get acquainted with the Dollhouse universe, but it doesn’t take that long to do that. I don’t know about you, but I figured out how this set-up worked after the first episode. Now we’re five episodes in and this routine is getting a little old. The stories are a little interesting, but I want a full arc here to satisfy my appetite for serialized Television. Getting these little tidbits of information about Alpha or whatever the hell Agent Ballard is not accomplishing this week is just not enough. Let’s talk about this week’s episode though. (more…)

“Gray Hour” In More Ways Than One [Dollhouse]

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Four episodes in and where do we stand with Dollhouse? Is it time for FOX to pack up their toys and go home? Not just yet (I hope). This week’s episode, “Gray Hour” wasn’t as impressive as previous episodes, but it did add to the overall story of the show. While each episode has been largely stand-alone in nature, there has been an overlaying story arc (Alpha) that has been set up as we go along. The show isn’t perfect though and things need a little bit of work. (more…)

American Idol Has Nothing on Echo [Dollhouse]

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Another week, another episode of Dollhouse. I’ve been seeing some mixed reviews about this series, but I don’t see what the problem is. I’m digging what’s been laid out for us so far and this episode wasn’t bad either. I don’t think I liked it as much as the previous one, but “Stage Fright” still delivered.

So this time we’ve got Echo as a double personality. She’s a backup singer for pop sensation Raina, but she also wants to protect her from crazed super-fans. Cue the dance numbers. While Echo is doing this, Agent Ballard is stumbling along following the breadcrumbs that the higher-ups at the Dollhouse have left for him to find. More on that momentarily. (more…)

Dollhouse AKA: Holy Shit That’s a Lot of Information

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I’ve read that Joss Whedon is purposefully avoiding an overlying arc for the beginning of Dollhouse and is instead focusing on 7 stand-alone episodes to start off the season. If that’s the case, then what the hell did we see on Friday night? Yes, the “engagement” was a stand-alone mission, but we got so much more. Seriously, by 9:57, I was thinking to myself “Wow, there’s a lot of information in this one episode.” That’s really surprising. Not that I’m thinking while watching TV, but that we’re bombarded with enough back-story to make the writers of Lost blush and so early on. And yet, there’s still a lot of mystery to the show, as well as many unanswered questions. Let’s take a closer look.

So at the end of the first episode, we were given a very brief glimpse of Alpha, the mysterious male active that went rogue. No other information was given aside from the fact that he seemed to like to cut people. This episode gave him a bunch of info on his background and how he went AWOL. It seems that throughout the time that Alpha was being imprinted with various personalities, he started to gather bits and pieces of each one and developed a composite of them all. The result was an unstoppable killing machine that hacked up a bunch of guards and several actives, but Echo was left untouched. Another “luckier” victim was Dr. Claire Saunders (Amy Acker) who had her face cut up and scarred beyond repair. We saw Saunders’ slashed face in the previous episode and I [incorrectly] theorized that she was a former active who received those injuries on the job. It seems that even though Saunders is a relatively minor character in the Dollhouse, she has a lot going on behind those scars. (more…)

I Hope Joss Whedon Never Puts Away His Dolls

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At long last, Joss Whedon returns to Television. Last night was the premiere of his new series, Dollhouse starring Buffy alumni Eliza Dushku. I was a bit worried when it was announced that the show would be on Fox, who is known for cancelling anything that’s actually decent, including Whedon’s previous show Firefly. So far it looks like Fox is trying to make amends and there’s been a decent promotional push for the series. Friday is still a weird place for TV shows, but Dollhouse is coupled with Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, so I think it’ll do alright. Or at least I hope so.

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