TV Shows That, Like Me, Are Improving With Age

First, some blog business. I realized yesterday that WordPress had added “tags,” in addition to “categories,” so I went back through all the relevant posts last night and added tags that essentially relate to genres (thriller, horror, etc.). You should be able to click on those on the right side of the screen (scroll the page down until you get to the bottom of the linky content on the right) if you want to look at all the horror movies/TV, all the Westerns, etc.

These are different from the “Categories” links, which I’m mostly using to classify posts by ex-Boyfriend or general topic (movie review, TV show, e.g.). If you’re a librarian, you can think of categories as being equivalent to subject headings, and tags as being equal to descriptors (if only because I’m not going to be that careful about controlling the vocabulary in the “tags” section). If you’re not a librarian, you should just count your lucky stars I haven’t started classifying each post using the Dewey Decimal System. Nerd alert!

As most of you old-hat bloggers already know, the bigger the font size in the “tag cloud” display, the more posts that have been tagged with that term. So, the word “thriller” is huge because I’ve watched a lot of thrillers lately, while “crap” is still reasonably small. Based on my usual movie watching tendencies, however, I suspect “crap” will quickly expand in size over the coming weeks.

Okay, now onto the (extremely long!) post. I’ve already done a run-through of all the NEW shows this year (though I’ll give you another update on some of those soon as well, since my feelings on a few have changed recently). But, I didn’t want to neglect some of the “old” shows, especially since there are a few I think are having their best seasons so far.

I’m breaking “old” shows (or “returning series,” in gentler terms) down into three categories: Aging Gracefully, Dying a Much-Too-Slow Death, and Just Plain Getting Old. I’ll start with the Aging Gracefully ones, and do separate posts for the other two categories over the next few days.

Aging Gracefully

Bones Fox, Tuesdays, 8pm — Last season, I enjoyed this show but wasn’t always in a huge hurry to watch it. I did love the guest spot from Stephen Fry as Booth’s psychoanalyist, but I’ve found some of the other characters on the show a bit hard to stomach since day one. Okay, okay, I’ll just come right out and say it: I HATE ANGELA. Everything about her annoys the bejesus out of me, especially her extreme overuse of the word “sweetie.” I realize this makes me a terrible person, since she’s supposed to be the nicest, most caring person in the lab. Nevertheless, I long for the day Tempe will be called in to identify her skull using dental records.

I can’t believe I just wrote that sentence.

Since I’m confessing, I might as well also mention that I found the early version of Tempe annoying with her unbelievable lack of pop culture knowledge — “I don’t know what that means” was one of her most oft-spoken lines, and more than once, I found myself yelling in response, “NOBODY doesn’t know what that means! Gah!”

Also, of course, I’m a huge fan of the Kathy Reichs mystery series this show is based on, and the Tempe in the books is absolutely nothing like the Tempe on the show. This took some getting used to for me. I’ve enjoyed Bones consistently since the beginning, but it wasn’t really until last season that I started to get a little more enthusiastic about it. So far this year, though, I’ve so thoroughly enjoyed every episode I find myself actually tuning in for it live Tuesday nights (something I never usually do, especially now that I have a DVR).

I’m really enjoying the relationship between Booth and Tempe — they’ve got great chemistry — and Tempe’s quirks have started to become less grating and more endearing for me with time. Booth’s sarcastic sense of humor kinda makes me swoon, and I also love the geeks back at the lab, especially when they start arguing about Einstein and/or superheroes. All in all, this is an extremely charming show, with solid plots, entertaining characters, and an all around “fun” vibe (my mom just cringed at my use of the word “fun” as an adjective, by the way. Hi, Mom!). A keeper, and one I look forward to more and more with each passing week.

NCIS — Tuesdays, CBS, 8pm — This series has had its ups and downs over the years, and I still haven’t stopped hating Lauren Holly in her role as the NCIS director. Yet, there are many other things I adore about this show, and, so far, I’ve been enjoying this season more than ever before. This is a solid, consistent crime series that does a great job of giving us some insight into the characters’ personal lives, without making it feel unnecessary and clumsy (by comparison, think of the very badly-done personal stories peppering CSI periodically — Gil’s hearing loss, his relationship with Sara, all gak-inducing and distracting). I love Abby, the forensics girl, as well as McGee (and not just because he shares the nickname “McGeek” with me). DiNozzo’s penchant for movie quotes has endeared him to me for life, and, of course, Mark Harmon — ’nuff said. The only thing they should stop doing, in my opinion, is having Ziva continue to get American slang wrong — she’s been here too long now to keep confusing the colloquialisms. Aside from that, though, I’m still having a lot of fun watching this one.

Supernatural — Thursdays, CW, 9pm — Oh man, this show is just A BLAST. I thought last year was the best for the series so far (that episode about the trickster was 100% pure comedy gold), but instead, the show is getting smarter, funnier, and more creative with every passing week. I especially predict a LOT of fun now that Dean thinks he’s only got a year to live, as well. Aside from the mandatory artery-clogging burger-eating and the oodles of premarital sex he’s been seeking since receiving the news of his imminent demise (it’s a long story), I think we’ll see a lot more action as he starts to take increasing “death be damned” types of risks when going after Big Bads. That was a great plot development, though I do think they’ll have to be careful not to let Sam sink down too far into moodiness, as he is often wont to do. Because when Sam starts moping around acting all maudlin, I begin feeling twitchy, and with him thinking Dean is doomed, I’m a little concerned the mood of the show might start to crash at times.

No crashing. Crashing = bad.

Because, oh man, that banter. When it’s flowing, it is some of the best witty dialogue ever to grace the small screen. The writers of this show not only know a ton about supernatural stories and myths, but they know brotherhood and sibling relations like the backs of their hands. In fact, I’d argue that now Veronica Mars is gone, this is the only show left that really does banter. And man, does it ever do banter well. If you’ve never seen the series, I’d advocate for starting with Season One on DVD, because backstory is sort of important. But you could also be jumping into the current episodes while you’re making up for lost time (also, I describe the series in more detail in the Boyfriend write-ups for Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, and their dead father, played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan — so check those out for more information too). If you like spooky plots, brilliant writing, and two extraordinarily good-looking young men and you are NOT watching Supernatural. . . Dude . . . Seriously. Get on the ball.

Men in Trees — Fridays, ABC, 9pm — Technically, we’re still finishing up season one of this series, so I can’t really start this paragraph off by saying I’m enjoying season two even more than season one. (Last year, ABC cut the first season short so it could kickstart a few late-bloomers in its timeslot, and though that meant a torturous spring for us fans, the nice thing is that it means an extra-long season this year.) But, nevertheless, things have begun to improve radically for all the characters in Elmo, especially now that Lynn has hit the road and a few other plotlines are back on track. It can only get more fun from here, my friends. I feel confident of that. The bad news is I just can’t shake this sinking feeling that nobody else is watching this one and that, because of that, it’s simply not going to survive its second year. I will be more traumatized by its cancellation than I was by the cancellations of Eyes and Wonderfalls, and if you remember me back then, you know I was moping for WEEKS over those two. So, if you aren’t watching this show, I’m begging you to tune in so we can keep the numbers up. Even if you hate the concept (or, more relevantly, even if you hate Anne Heche, an emotion I fully understand), there’s just sooooo much to love about the boys, not to mention the lovely setting. James Tupper as the scruffy outdoorsman Jack! Abraham Benrubi as the bear-like barkeep with a heart of gold! Derek Richardson as the geeky boy toy! There’s plenty for everyone. The only thing so far this year I haven’t enjoyed much is the guest spot from Callum Keith Rennie, and that’s just because he suddenly looks old enough to be my grandfather. A fact I found sort of disturbing, especially since my grandfather is old enough to be DEAD.

CSI: NY — Wednesdays, CBS, 10pm — I watched about the first six episodes of season one of this CSI spin-off when it first started and got so sleepy from all the drearily (un)lit sets that I gave up on it. Besides, nothing irritates me more in movies or on television than a morgue that is badly lit — I refuse to believe medical examiners ever do autopsies in dark rooms, even when they want a cool air of mysterious ambiance. I caught a few reruns last year, and was still sort of “meh” on the series, I’ll confess. But this year, I decided to give it a more serious try after having a few conversations about it with friends and family who are fans, and I’ve been nothing but impressed ever since. They’ve finally shaken off some of the extra-silly darkness (both in the settings and in the characters’ psyches), and the mystery plots themselves have been intriguing instead of old news. I really enjoyed the “Second Life” storyline from two weeks ago, which looks like it’ll stick around for a bit this season, and even the Halloween one, a bit cheesy as it was (set in Amityville, no less), was still pretty fun. All in all, this show seems to be getting better with age. A quality I both admire AND share, if I do say so myself.

Numb3rs — Fridays, CBS, 10pm — I got bored with this show last year when they got rid of Peter MacNicol so he could do 24. I was surprised, really, by how huge a gap that left in the series for me. But I was sucked back in last spring by the season finale with the whole double-triple-cross thing with Colby. I got a bit more caught up with reruns over the summer, and was eager to tune back in when the show started up again this fall. So far, despite the fact I still don’t understand why all the geniuses have stopped shaving, I’ve been really enjoying this year’s round of episodes. I keep waiting for them to run out of ways they can work math into the mysteries, but so far, they’ve managed to continue doing it and in ways I frequently find fascinating and surprising (plus, I just like saying the words “Fibonacci numbers,” not to mention thinking about how cool they are). Geeks are fun; math geeks, doubly so. And I’ve been watching reruns of Northern Exposure lately in spare moments too, which is only making seeing Rob Morrow all grown up on Friday nights that much more entertaining. I can’t believe I haven’t made either of these two guys a Boyfriend of the Week yet. What am I, totally BLIND? Expect to see write-ups on both of them in 2008.

Tune in later this weekend for part two of this series, which will focus on TV shows that should be dead and yet continue to refuse to go gently into that good night. So to speak.

7 Responses to “TV Shows That, Like Me, Are Improving With Age”

  1. Lorraine Says:

    Bones – I think I enjoy this show the most of all that I watch. I agree that the show is getting better. The personal relationships seem more real than on most shows. All the geeky lab stuff is interesting and the exchanges between Jack and Zach are priceless. And, I must admit that I am a sucker for the Angela/Jack relationship.

    Men in Trees – I haven’t really gotten back on board with this show since its long hiatus. It reminds me of “Northern Exposure” but unfortunately it is only half as good. But it is a sweet show and I agree that the exit of Lynn should help. Maybe she was “too real” but she just didn’t fit into the whimsical vibe.

    Numbers – If I had a “Boyfriend of the Week”, Rob Morrow would definitely be on my list. I had/have a huge crush on Dr. Joel Fleishmann. The sight of him in that giant parka and boots makes my knees go weak 😉 And that crinkly-eyed smile!! “Northern Exposure” is one of my top-10 fav tv series (yes- I have a list!). “Numbers” can get rather procedural but I look forward to the scenes with the Epps men.

  2. rtvs.de TV Serien und mehr » TV Shows That, Like Me, Are Improving With Age Says:

    […] megwood hat heute was interessantes gepostet über TV Shows That, Like Me, Are Improving With AgeHier ein Auszug:Erwarten, um zu sehen, Zuschreibungen auf beiden von ihnen in 2008. Tune in späteren an diesem Wochenende für den zweiten Teil dieser Serie, die sich im Fernsehen zeigt, dass sollte tot, und noch weiter zu verweigern gehen sanft in die gute Nacht. So zu sprechen. […]

  3. Eva Says:

    David Krumholtz is the stuff that boyfriend websites are made of. (Sorry, I’m really sleepy and can’t make it make any more sense than that.)

  4. Kathleen Says:

    I just had wine and appetizers last night with a friend of mine and we were talking about shows that we have to watch on tv. She always catches Grays Anatomy and I told her that I didn’t watch that show. After she was resuscitated and agreed to continue talking to me, I told her that my guilty pleasure is Bones. She never heard of it. It made me sad but also made me feel like I must have some sort of nerd chic if I’m watching a show other tv watchers don’t know exist. I also agree that this season is much better than last. And, I kind of agree with the whole Angela is rather annoying with the sweetie thing – and I’m not sure how I feel about her “quirky” marriage to the guy who she couldn’t remember, thereby preventing her from getting married in last year’s season finale. I don’t know – didn’t she have a boyfriend die a couple of years ago? One that she only saw about once a year? Where does she have time to get married to tropical island guy and forget about him and then once a year date desert guy? Still, the Booth-Temperance thing makes me happy.

  5. carolyn Says:

    I agree – Bones is better and better and really fun this year. i didn’t read any of the books until after having seen the series so i have the opposite reaction of you and just can’t even stand the books. i am really loving this year’s storyline so far.

  6. Liz Says:

    I LOVE BONES!

  7. Liz Says:

    Though I admit I only started watching it because of David Boreanaz (I was, and still am, a “Buffy” freak, and watched “Angel” all the time, too. I knew from nothing about Tempe Brennan. Imagine my surprise when I picked up a book, totally by accident, by Kathy Reichs, all about Tempe, in Quebec! I enjoyed the book, and would like to read more, though I agree the Tempe on TV is nothing like the Tempe in the book. I love all the characters in the lab (although the jury’s still out on Cam), and I can see why Angela is important, even though overly sweet. She provides an important foil to the others. I’m content to just let all these peculiar relationships play out, and see where they go. Did you guys pick up on the line about how Temperance’s heroine in her books is named “Kathy Reichs?”

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

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

Google photo

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

Twitter picture

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

Facebook photo

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

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: