In Which We Try To Find Something For You To Watch Despite the Strike

Give Yourself Something to Do

by Alex Carnevale

With the fall TV season nearly over with, and only 8 episodes of Lost in January to look forward to, we’re about to experience the hell of a whole lotta reruns. And since How I Met Your Mother has been about as entertaining as observing the inside of a washing machine, to say we’re in deep shit is an understatement.

Here are a few shows I have been watching (fair warning, I am easily amused):

‘Til Death

After an impressive debut season, I was ready to say they had run out of ideas for this Brad Garrett-Joely Fischer comedy. And indeed I never want to hear Brad or Joely groan about the other’s habits ever again. On the other hand, the show has a far funnier couple that’s getting more and more of the screen time in the dude from American Pie and Kat Foster:

I don’t know why this woman hilariouses me, but she does. In a recent episode week they did a few scenes on the fact that she made her husband have a 10:30 bedtime even if he wants to stay up. Every time she said You have fiiiive minutes I giggled.

Rules of Engagement

Speaking of shows that aren’t actually good, Rules is the terrible new David Spade-Patrick Warburton sex comedy without the sex or the comedy. I haven’t yet stopped DVRing it because of the actress who plays this dude’s fiance:

God bless you, Bianca.

Its writers are terrible (including Seinfeld pal Carol Leifer, whose previous work I have so enjoyed and actually her episode with Adam’s mom was pretty good) and they shouldn’t go on strike. For example, a recent plotline had David Spade being turned down by Heather Locklear. I’d rather watch a romantic comedy with Hitler and Eva Braun.

Mad Men

Molly kept telling me to watch AMC’s original series, Mad Men.

Molly 45 years ago

Boy, was she right. What this show lacks in iPod jokes, it more than makes up for in terrific writing and gorgeous cinematography. Just give this show a chance.

Survivor: China

I tuned out of Survivor for many years, and while they are totally out of ideas, sometimes there will just be an interesting cast, and that will make the show. This season’s cast didn’t exactly blow me away at first, but then I found James. This guy is a gravedigger and he’s already caught on with some people. They did this barrel-rolling challenge the other day and he kept saying “betch” as he was rolling on the barrels, it was tremendous.

He also has the two hidden immunity idols, so there ya go.

Stargate Atlantis

The first Stargate show ran out of steam (mercifully) in something like its third season. They still did some good stuff, but the concept was in need of reinvention with a new stable of characters and a new villain, and they got that with Atlantis.

The show’s writing is already among the best on television, and after killing off the ship’s doctor last season, they’ve seriously been outdoing themselves lately with intricate plots. Really this is the only good mystery show on television and it has the advantage of having aliens and hotties as well.

The wraith. So evil.

New Amsterdam

This show is already pretty much dead, but when I read about the concept, I kind of dug it:

The main character is John Amsterdam (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), a New York homicide detective who is immortal. Amsterdam was a Dutch soldier in the year 1642 when he stepped in front of a sword to save the life of a Native American girl during a massacre of her indigenous tribe. The girl in turn rescued Amsterdam by weaving an ancient spell that conferred immortality upon him. It was also prophesied that he would not age until he finds his one true love, and only then will he become whole and ready for mortality. His immortality has resulted in Amsterdam spending over three centuries of his life marked by loss as his friends gradually grow old and die while he is forced to remain alive. Amsterdam is also a former alcoholic who regularly attends Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, having remained sober since 1965.

As I am myself immortal, this premise really hits home for me. Also this one.

Samantha Who?

While I refuse to actually watch this show, in a hard-hitting interview I did over the thanksgiving break, my mother admitting to liking it. Herewith the transcript:

Me: You really like this show?

Mom: Yes, it’s funny. It’s about an annoying woman who gets amnesia and wakes up nice and has to deal with the consequences. Jean Smart plays the mom.

Me: Can I have the entire New York Review of Books Classics series for Christmas?

Mom: Absolutely not.

NB: Even though my mother is Jewish she seems to have no idea she is, and thus we celebrate Christmas. Go figure.

And finally, we save the best for last. We recently viewed the second season of this show in nearly its entirety (there are two episodes left), and we are totally not spouting hyperbole when we say this may be the best season of any show ever done, ever.

That show is Dexter, and we will have more on it later this week. Do yourself a favor and watch the best show on TV to prepare yourself.

Alex Carnevale is the editor of This Recording.


Neat free market stuff in Cyprus:

While Cyprus is a small market of just under 1m, including the self-declared Turkish Cypriot republic in the north, it also attracts shoppers from the Middle East and Gulf states seeking a more relaxed environment than Dubai.

A boom in second-home construction means more than 120,000 British, Scandinavian, German and Russian investors who spend several months a year in Cyprus have also become consumers in the local market.

Cyprus’s attractions, along with year-round sunshine and a cosy small-town atmosphere, include a corporate tax rate of just 10 per cent – among the lowest in the Union – and, from January, the comfort of eurozone membership.

We made it in Ed’s roundup, hooray!

We like Ed Park’s The New-York Ghost.

George Bush action figures make a fine gift.

The MTA continues to embarrass.

Write a novel in twelve words.

Hunger strike has nothing to do with anoxeria.

The teaching of mathematics ain’t what it used to be.

Madonna dyes a sheep.


“My Interpretation” — Mika (mp3)

“Any Other World” — Mika (mp3)

“Love Today (Patrick Wolf remix)” — Mika (mp3)


Tess predicts the future.

The sad story of Chris Benoit.

Ben on Tom Cruise and Meryl Streep.

7 thoughts on “In Which We Try To Find Something For You To Watch Despite the Strike

  1. Wow. With the writer’s strike and this post, it really depresses what lengths I’m going to have to go to to entertain myself during this wintery season. I may have to bundle up and go pay a ridiculously overpriced amount to rent a movie, and watch it everyday until due back… blah..

  2. Regarding your comments on Stargate Atlantis and especially Stargate SG-1: “The first Stargate show ran out of steam (mercifully) in something like its third season.”

    Wow. Ran out of steam. That must be why the series ran for TEN seasons, and has two made-for-dvd movies in production – The Ark of Truth and Continuum.

    And: “The show’s writing is already among the best on television, and after killing off the ship’s doctor last season…”

    Ship’s doctor? Okay, Atlantis CAN be a spaceship, but mostly it is a city floating on an ocean on a planet in the Pegasus Galaxy.


  3. Wow – someone took time out of time away from writing ‘Lois and Clark’ fan fiction to defend Stargate Atlantis.

    Where would the internet be without homosexual nerds?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s