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The Weekly Power Rankings: Annie's Not Wearing Pants Edition

By Dustin Rowles | TV | May 9, 2011 |

By Dustin Rowles | TV | May 9, 2011 |

A few notes about those that missed the cut this week:

  • “Doctor Who,” fell from number one to out of the top ten all together with a stand-alone episode. The stand-alone eps haven’t been as good in the Matt Smith era, although I think I prefer the overall Moffat mythology to the Davies mythology (read also, C. Rob’s recap of this week’s episode).

  • I know it was the season finale of “Fringe,” but after it, I deleted the show from my DVR season passes out of principle. Hopefully, I can beat back the urge to add it again next season. I thought the ending was a weak Shyamalan cop-out. The only saving grace to the season came when Seth emailed me after watching it and (spoilers) suggested that we might need another Joshua Jackson obituary. It was lame ending to the season, but it fit perfectly into the Pajiba mythos.

  • The first post-Michael Scott episode of “The Office” was terrible.

  • It wasn’t good enough to break the top ten (or even 15), but “Chuck” had its first decent episode in months, as Chuck finally revealed to his sister that he’s not only a spy, but that the intersect is in his brain. But the big revelation, which was actually kind of smart, was that Agent X is Volkoff, which allows them to bring back the season’s only bright spot, Timothy Dalton.

  • “Breaking In” had its first weak episode of the season, “Modern Family” just missed the cut, and thanks to a Los Angeles based episode and Beckett in a bathing suit, this week’s “Caste” was one of the first in a while I actually managed to watch in its entirety.

    10. Chicago Code: Alderman Ronin Gibbons returned this week, and the noose tightened around him. I’m certain he’ll pull out of this predicament, but I’m curious as to how he’ll manage it. And I know that few of you are paying attention to this show, but Jason Clarke is brilliant in it, as is Matt Lauria for those of you looking for a post-“FNL” fix. For as much attention as “The Shield” received, I’m perplexed as to why “Chicago Code” is not receiving similar acclaim.

    9. The Good Wife: I liked this episode as much for itself as for what it portends: A major shift. Peter Florrick looks to be the chief antagonist, with Cary being his right hand man. This is going to be fun, and I look forward to watching Alicia take down her soon-to-be ex-husband this season and next, although I like Cary so much that it’d be nice to give him a win every once in a while, too.

    8. 30 Rock: I thought the season finale was hilarious, notwithstanding the creepy subplot between Jack and Kenneth. Overall, I thought this season was better than last, but short of the almost perfect season two.

    7. Game of Thrones: I am really enjoying “Game of Thrones,” but — as someone with no knowledge of the novels — I’m a little anxious for the dragons and wizards to arrive. They’re going to arrive, aren’t they? It’s that kind of show, isn’t it? And those evil creatures beyond the wall that were introduced in the first scenes of the pilot — where are they? Bring them back! See also TK’s review.

    6. The Killing: Another solid episode, but I have to admit that I’m getting a little frustrated with the drama. The murder investigation at the center of the show is still gripping, but the side plots — the engagement, the political campaign, and even the grieving family, have lost a lot of their interest. Plus, there’s been no growth of character. And I hate to say it, because I think Mireille Enos is doing a bang-up job, but, I’d really appreciate it if the Sarah Linden character betrayed some emotion occasionally. The grim listlessness is making her a hard character with which to sympathize.

    5. Cougar Town: It was one of those weeks where the dramas hit lulls, while the comedies soared, and “Cougar Town” was once again brilliant. I want to be friends with these characters. In fact, I only just realized that, of the 10 or so “celebrities” I follow on Twitter, eight of them are connected to “Cougar Town” or “Scrubs.” Clearly, Bill Lawrence creates people we want to Twitter-drink with.

    4. Happy Endings: Immediately after the two episodes this week aired, there was some real consideration to putting it above “Parks and Recreation.” They were hilarious, starting with the gaycist episode and ending with one of my favorite sitcom episodes of the season. If you’re not watching “Happy Endings,” the second episode brilliantly hit a lot of Pajiba touchstones, not just mocking hipster douchebags but likening them to zombies in a hilarious homage scene that had hipsters Romero-shuffling after a food truck. Fantastic. Get thee to the bandwagon.

    3. Parks and Recreation: Perhaps the comparison to “Arrested Development” was misguided, but it is achieving the same brilliant success that early seasons of “The Office” accomplished, and it’s doing so without making us feel intensely uncomfortable. I wonder, though, how much I’d love the show without Ron Swanson, who Paul Southworth brilliantly compared to “Oscar the Grouch with a meat fetish.”

    2. Community: I thought “Parks and Recreation” was funnier this week, but “Community” was slightly more entertaining, plus it gets bonus points for degree of difficulty. It was one of those episodes that I appreciated even more on a second viewing.

    1. Justified: I’d be a fool not to put the season finale of the brilliant second season of “Justified” at the top of the rankings this week, although it wasn’t a completely satisfying conclusion for me. I thought they did a great job with the Mags Bennett storyline (although not putting a bullet in Dickie’s head was an opportunity missed), but there was no real resolution to the Art/Raylan/Winona tension. It’s like there was a scene missing, where Winona confessed to Art that she was behind the robbery/return, which is what provoked Art to bring out the cavalry to save Raylan. Plus, the pregnancy “bombshell” was dumb, and not because of Winona. I’m apparently the only fan of the show in existence who actually likes Winona. I understand her motivations. But the pregnancy was just useless to the story, and if it is part of next season’s arc, then just hold it until next season. See also Agent Bedhead’s finale review.

    "Game Of Thrones" - "Cripples, Bastards, And Broken Things" | Pajiba After Dark 5/9/11

    Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.