Sat, 15 May 2010
Spring 2010 TV: Tuesday
Well, this one came a bit quicker, eh? Tuesday has always been a mixed bag, though with a fairly solid CBS primetime lineup to anchor it.
NCIS, formerly called Navy NCIS, a show I sorta stumbled across by accident one day when a friend mentioned it in passing. It's another of Donald P. Bellisario's "the military ain't so bad, see?" shows, but I give the man a huge amount of slack because of his past contributions. I mean, really: Baa Baa Black Sheep, Battlestar Galactica (the 70s version), Quincy M.E., Tales of the Gold Monkey, Magnum, P.I.? Quantum Leap, fer pity's sake! (The only TV show who's con I attended.) Even JAG was pretty good. And now NCIS, a show that's nearly always watchable, and sometimes verges on brilliant. When they killed off Sasha Alexander's character at the end of season 2, that was a real gut punch that I did not see coming. And the sniper sequence at the start of the current season, #7, was quite enjoyable in a Ramboesque vengeance-is-mine sort of way. Plus I've always liked Mark Harmon ever since I first saw him in the excellent Reasonable Doubts, and where else can you see a legend like David McCallum every week? Oh, and that Pauly Perrette is a delight, and the rest of the cast ain't bad either. I give it an A, with occasional flashes of A+.
NCIS Los Angeles is an unnecessary spinoff, though spinoffs have worked pretty well for the CSI series. I like the cast well enough, and would watch a 90-minute informercial on the ShamWow every week if Linda Hunt were presenting it, but the show has so far failed to rise to the level of its parent, and has failed to grip me very hard. I still watch it, but mostly because of the excellent but underused Ms. Hunt, and because of its placement on the schedule. It's a B for me, with frequent dips into B- or even C territory.
The Good Wife is an excellent new offering starring the fantastic Julianna Margulies and reliable hunk Chris Noth. I'm delighted to see the adoreable Archie Panjabi working on US television, and Christine Baranski continues to charm me even during her brief moments on screen here. The premise, the writing, the acting, all top-notch, and I always make sure to catch this one every week. All around solid A with frequent forays into A+.
Law & Order: Criminal Intent has long been my favorite L&O spinoff, even with the cast changes, and seems to be appearing on Tuesdays now. It won't be the same without Vincent D'Onofrio and Kathryn Erbe, though; while retaining the same basic format, it seems to have lost the cerebral intensity it had with Goren and Eames at the helm. I also mourn the loss of Jamey Sheridan, although Eric Bogosian was a suitable replacement. And I've always liked Chris Noth as a detective, and Julianne Nicholson was just totally yummylicious. Now, if it weren't for the always quirky and entertaining Jeff Goldblum (RIP Raines) I might even give this a pass; my jury is still out on Burrows and Mastrantonio. NBC-Universal has made it hard enough to catch, with the full-time switch to USA, but I still keep an eye out for it, and when it shows up I give it a look. Catching old eps in syndication is thankfully still an option. Solid B show that used to be A+, sigh.
And there's Tuesday. Coming up, some greats on Wednesday!
Comments will appear after they're reviewed.