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Wednesday, July 21, 2004
TV Round-Up
The Amazing Race
Well, I guess I'm going to have to find some new favorites to pull for to win this race, since Jim and Marsha were eliminated last night. After bouncing back from the bowling moms treachery last week, they just couldn't overcome an error in making plane reservations here to come back. Which is a shame because if there was a team that deserved elimination, it was Marshall and Lance. You wonder why people outside our country hate Americans? Just look at these two bozos. They are rude and obnoxious to EVERYONE! Was it just me or was anyone else hoping they'd still be there, biting chocolates trying to find the right one or that they'd somehow get lost and Jim and Marsha would sneak in for a win? Also, I'm getting tired of the Charla/Mirna act. To Mirna, everything is "disguisting" (please, find a new word!) and everyone is against them. And Charla...she screws everyone in the whole flight thing over by saying she needs a doctor and using that to get on the flight first. As much as I was disliking Karli and Kami, I have far more disdain for these two now. Though the sight of Karli and Kami swimming out to the island when everyone else just waded out through shallow water was the funniest thing I've seen in quite a while. Couldn't have happened to two nicer people, I say.

The 4440: The New & Improved Carl Morrisey
Last week, I wondered if all the returnees had some type of special power, and this week we find out the answer is--probably. There was a lot happening in this episode--from Sean's lying to Tom about trying to revive Kyle to Diana taking Maia out of the center with her (which from the time Diana said she would check in on Maia during the tests, it was obvious where this one would probably lead). The plotline of Carl Morrisey wanting to use his new-found powers to save his old neighborhood seemed fairly cliched, but I have to admit I liked where they took the story. Seeing his wife lose Carl again was heart-breaking and I'll admit the Carl inspires his neighbors at the end seemed a bit too pat for my liking. I still have to admit the Richard and Lily plotline is the most compelling one, esp. with Lily's apparent connection to the baby and her violating the restraining order to see Heidi. I begin to wonder if this will be some type of super-alien baby that will be born before the end of the series. Time will tell, but, for now, I'm hooked.

The Dead Zone: No Questions Asked.
Walt Bannerman has had some good fortune in his life--he's been in the right place at the right time and known how to take advantage of it. But it's not without its consequences, as we find out here. Since the beginning of the series, we've seen Walt struggle as the third wheel in the whole Johnny/Sarah/Walt triangle and even though we should hate him for being with Sarah, we can't. Why? Because the writers of this show and Chris Bruno make Walt likeable. He's a good man, trying to do the right thing for all those around him. He loves Sarah, we can see that, but he struggles with playing second fiddle to Johnny at times. Here, we see some flashbacks into Walt's past where we learn he's not quite the boy scout we think he is. Walt was having an affair, which lead to the one childhood friend getting killed and the other going to jail. Now, years later, Walt is struggling to put his past behind him, but it keeps coming back to haunt him. This was a strong entry in the series and a compelling look at what I think is the most underrated element of the series, Walt. Seeing that he's just as human as everyone else was nicely done and it was intriguing to slowly watch the mystery of what happened years ago unfold. Season three has had a lot of great exploration of Walt's character, all of which has been superbly done and well handled.

But I do have one small quibble--where the heck has Bruce gone?!?

Stargate: Atlantis Pilot.
I've never been a huge fan of Stargate SG1. Yes, I've seen a couple of random episodes here and there, but I couldn't tell you anything about the on-going plotlines or the entire backstory. That said, I decide that maybe I'd take a chance on the Stargate series attempt to become like the Trek franchise with its very own spin-off. So, I tuned in and was a bit confused, but overall, fairly impressed with the show. Yes, the premise is a lot like Voyager where you have a crew stranded far away from home with two very different sides and points of view--in this case the scientists and the military. Hopefully, this conflict will be more successfully addressed here than it ever was on Voyager where the two crews in conflict was dropped somewhere mid-second season. This first episode was a lot about setting up things for the future of the series--who are our friends, who are our enemies and what is our mission. So, it did a nice job of that. The real question is--can the series sustain itself over the long run? For me, the jury is still out--simply because the pilot didn't really seem to spend very long on any one character enough to hook me into caring about them or having much beyond a passing interest in them. So, while it was a well-done pilot visually, the hook of creating intersting characters we'll want to come to know and love wasn't quite what I'd hoped for.


posted by Michael Hickerson at 7/21/2004 09:15:00 AM | |
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