Hey, guys. How’s everybody doing? It’s Friday, it’s still kind of summer-ish, and Pumpkin Spice Latte season is just around the corner. That means either your favorite drink time is coming up, or you recognize that PSLs are garbage and you’ll soon get to feel superior to lots of white chicks.
The reason for the small talk is that we seemed to have a bit of a disagreement yesterday morning. I felt like ABC’s fall line-up was pretty promising, and you guys felt the exact opposite. Which is cool. Reasonable people disagree. And I realized pretty quickly that I’d made a substantial mistake. I forgot to mention that network TV is garbage.
See, I said “surprisingly good” about something that is “historically bad.” You guys maybe heard surprisingly good as like, “Hey, these doughnuts are surprisingly good.” Which is the best sentence. But I meant like, “Hey, this kale protein shake with cod liver oil is surprisingly good.” Which means like, “I can choke this down without vomiting.”
So let’s reset the bar. Based on the other networkline- up previews I’ve done this week, here’s the number of shows I currently watch and the number of shows I plan to watch on each network.
Currently Watch: 0
Plan to Watch: 0
Currently Watch: 3
Plan to Watch: 2
Currently Watch: 5
Plan to Watch: 6
See those aren’t great numbers. And I’m pretty sure that I won’t keep up with at least half of the shows I plan to watch. And CBS’s line-up is not helping that. I don’t watch a single show on CBS. The difference between CBS and NBC is that I’ve never watched CBS (except for the first season of Picket Fences which I think is everything I need to tell you about myself as an 11-year-old.)
So what has the great vacuum of funny offered us this season? The best late night show currently on air, and a lot of nothing else. Let’s take a look.
Angel From Hell
I actually want to like this one. I like Jane Lynch, and I’d like to see CBS abandon the bland, predictable humor it’s been known for recently. Humor should be edgy, and like Mom before it, I’m hoping this eases the CBS audience into bolder jokes. Unfortunately, like Mom before it, I’m not really feeling this. The jokes mostly land, but none of them are especially funny. And I don’t see where the plot can go after Angel Jane Lynch explains that she just wants Straight Laced Maggie Lawson to loosen up. I do like seeing a more depraved Kyle Bornheimer, but I’m not sure if that’s enough to get me to watch.
Overall mood: Cautiously optimistic. But if it is good, I can upgrade to
E.R. with platitudes. But Luis Guzmán. But that’s still not enough.
Overall mood: Who cares?
Life In Pieces
So they’re really doubling down on the bland, predictable humor that’s missing from Mom and Angel From Hell, eh? See it’s funny because James Brolin is old. And Fawn from New Girl shouldn’t have looked at her vagina because (insert joke here about childbirth and ruined vaginas. Please for the love of god, don’t include the word “ham.”) I’m not saying that upper-middle class white families can’t have interesting and complex problems and stories. I’m just saying that I don’t care about them.
Overall mood: Oh, white people.
Let’s get real about this. There was no good way for the showrunners to deal with either the “girl” part of Supergirl nor the costume. They try to address it. “Girl” itself shouldn’t be considered an insult or thought of as less than. The skirted costume is better than the shorts number. But it still falls a little flat. A female over the age of 18 is a woman. A girl is not an adult. Being a female isn’t an insult. Referring to a grown ass woman with her own apartment and a job diminutively is a problem. He is Superman, she is Supergirl. There needs to be a better explanation for it than “Girl Power!” That (admittedly mostly out of the writers hands’) issue aside, it seems vaguely formulaic. The accepting of the powers, the struggles to master them, the effing costume choices. We’ve just seen it so many times before. Couldn’t we have just jumped into the story of a competent, successful woman trying to balance being a super hero and having a life? That I would have been into.
Overall mood: I’m just going to brush this off.
So a terrible movie about meth (that movie was about meth, right?) gets turned into a TV show?
Overall mood: I’m done.