Saturday, July 12, 2008

TV Addiction - Don't Mock, It's A Disease!

The last two weeks have been spent vegging out in front of the TV. I have read almost nothing. I've struggled through a little more than half of On Beauty, and I've read some newspaper articles and half an issue of Bookmarks, but that's it. So, instead of a book report, this time you get a TV report. Deal with it. Here's what I've been watching:

UGLY BETTY: I heart this show. It's funny, clever, colorful, and addicting. I watched all of season one in two weeks, and I'm holding my breath until season two comes out (September 9). I love looking at all the clothes and shoes. I'm sure if I worked in a place like that, I'd feel like Betty - like I don't fit in, etc. But, sometimes I get really annoyed with Betty. She's too good - she has an opinion on what everyone else should do, etc. Like because she is bigger and dresses worse than everyone else she is smarter and morally superior. She never makes mistakes (unless her cluesslessness counts) - she's always just telling everyone else that they made the wrong decision. The fact that I care this much about a fictional character may be slightly disturbing, but it just proves that the show is gripping.

But the other characters are awesome. They're so dramatic and, ironically, more realistic. It's fun to see the telenovela that her father watches, wonder if Hilda's clothes could get tighter or if her nails could possibly get longer, and oh my goodness - I wish Betty and Henry would just hook up already!!! You should immediately put this on your Netflix queue, or rent it, or just take the leap and buy it. (Or borrow it from Bryan like I did). You will not be sorry. One hint, though: try not to watch 6 episodes in a row. It can get to be a bit much.

30 ROCK: Tina Fey is a genius. She is a funny actress, but she is an even funnier writer. She can do no wrong in my opinion - even Baby Mama was a hoot ("Is that chocolate or poop?") The show is funny, but the casting is what makes it good. Alec Baldwin is perfectly cast, and the motley crew of writers add a lot of dimension to the show. I'm not a fan of Tracy Morgan, but he is even tolerable in this show. However, it's not the kind of show that I have to watch every episode. It's not addicting, and I get bored after a couple of episodes. I don't sit around in my spare time wondering what will happen next to the characters in this show, but it's not a bad way to spend 22 minutes.

NCIS - SEASON 1: Ok, I know this doesn't really seem to fit with the shows above, but I love NCIS. Yes, it's got predictable plots, cheesy scenes, and is one of the most unrealistic shows out there (no way would NCIS have as much power and jurisdiction as the show suggests - also, they don't have enough money to do the type of forensic work they do - AND there are not that many murders on Naval Bases in the Washington/Virginia/Maryland area). But I don't care. I started watching it in its fourth season, so it's time to catch up.

I love the characters and the dialogue is witty and quick. My favorite is Abby - the goth/punk forensic analyst. She totally does not look the part - she's got the spiderweb neck tatoo, wears pigtails and short plaid skirts, and listens to metal music while performing DNA tests, matching fingerprints and analyzing hard drives. There are references to movies - old, new, classic, cheesy - that somehow tie into what they are investigating. It's not thought-provoking, it's not genius or hilarious or earth-shattering, but it's entertaining. That's more than I can say for a lot of TV. You should check it out.

ROME: I watched the two seasons of Rome a couple of months ago - before Mike left we watched it together. But I wanted to include it here, because it really is one of the best shows I've seen in a long time. Leave it to HBO. I like almost everything they produce. I've decided to go back and give Deadwood another shot. Everything about Rome is great - acting, writing, outfits (I have never seen so much naked, unshaven, glistening flesh), and the action scenes are fantastic. It's too bad that the show's not on anymore, but I suppose there isn't much left to write about. Season One chronicles the rise and ultimate fall of Julius Caeser. Season Two chronicles Rome's unstable political atmosphere after Caeser's death - and depicts Marc Antony's relationship with Cleopatra. It's so good, I'm getting excited just thinking about it.

I have two small, tiny pet peeves about Rome. 1) All the actors have British accents. I'm not sure what kind of accent would have been preferable, but it took me several episodes to suspend my disbelief and get over that. 2) The actor who plays Octavian (they guy who replaces Caeser) changes right in the middle of season two. I don't know what happened or why a new actor was brought in, but again, it took me several episodes to get over that too. It is a testament to the series, though, that I stuck with it. I still think about all the characters and wonder what they're up to. HBO, if you're listening, pretty please make another season of this show!!!

Don't worry, I haven't given up on reading. I've just gotten to the point where I'm really interested in On Beauty and I'll be writing about it soon. Once I start Northanger Abbey I'll put up another survey where you can vote again. Thanks for reading!


  1. ah, brooke...i totally know how you feel about tv addiction!! right now i'm currently addicted to nothing. at the end of the summer i was planning on renting season one of dexter, because elin loves that show, but now i'm apparently coming to california! so that's cool. i think that is a good trade off.

  2. It's funny, Brooke doesn't have cable and she had a television addiction this summer. Hell, I don't even have a TV (just a laptop and a dream) and I have become addicted in the past few weeks. I managed to watch seasons 1 and 2 of Weeds. I'm hooked - I can't wait to get season 3 in the mail. Don't worry Bryan, maybe we'll have to watch Dexter while you're here: I've been eyeing that one up too!