Revolution / The New Normal / Sons of Anarchy / plus music reality show changes.
When I first saw the trailer for this show months ago I practically died of excitement. This is the kind of sci-fi dystopian drama that I love. Fast forward a few months and I’ve been bombarded with all the new fall shows coming on. I almost forgot about Revolution. Well turns out I set it up to record and last night I tuned in. As excited as I was the pilot was just okay. It’s a cool premise though. Basically 15 years prior the entire world’s supply of electricity stops working and the world goes to shit, and right before this happens it seems like only one man knew it was going to happen. This man was Ben Matheson. He had a wife, and two young children. A daughter and a son. Now in the future the Militia of the Monroe Republic thinks that Ben Matheson knows something about the blackout and they storm his village to take him in. Nothing goes as planned, there is a shootout and Ben dies. So the Militia settles on taking Ben’s son (Danny) instead. So what happens is the daughter of Ben (Charlie) sets off towards Chicago to find her uncle Miles and save Danny. Charlie is young and beautiful and I’m pretty sure the show is trying to give her the whole Katniss vibe with the hunting and bows and arrows. But she’s likeable. Plus she has the responsibility of solving the whole mystery as to why there isn’t anymore electricity. She just doesn’t know it yet. Charlie also has Maggie (a doctor and Ben’s girlfriend) and Aaron (former Google employee and super nerd) in tow. Of course there has to be some kind of romantic sideline so they throw in a Militia member who likes Charlie and helps her but you don’t know what side he is working on. And you’ve got Gus Fring from Breaking Bad being as menacing as ever. He’s some big time Militia head on the path to finding Miles and to take him into General Monroe.
With that whole synopsis out of the way I thought the pilot was kind of bland. I’m not saying the show is bad I just felt like they were trying to cram way to much into this hour pilot without letting this marinate with the audience a bit. For me character development is what hooks people to a show and there wasn’t much depth to any of the characters yet. With that said I actually think (and hope) that this show stays on the air long enough to start getting good. I am praying NBC doesn’t cancel this prematurely and end what could have been. It has enough there to actually get really good but we all know NBC’s track record for ending shows too soon before they can reach their potential. This show has a semi Jericho vibe with the whole conspiracy thing going on with the addition of the whole dystopian future thing that many young adult books are doing. My recommendation is to tune in every week and spread the word. Let’s try and keep this show on the air and see what producer J.J. Abrams can do with it.
*** out of ****. WATCH!
The New Normal (NBC)
I was not looking forward to this show at all. I felt like when I first saw previews it looked campy and the storyline was played out. Haven’t we already seen the whole two dads thing done so well on Modern Family? And that has been around for a couple of years now. So when The New Normal premiered I was anticipating a not a funny version of Cam and Mitchell trying to have a baby. I did underestimate the genius that is Ryan Murphy (co-creator) though.
As much as I wanted to not like this show it was tough. It’s a story about two mixed families coming together to make a baby. Bryan and David a successful couple living in Los Angeles are trying to have a baby. Goldie and her young daughter Shania just left Ohio to escape Goldie’s cheating ex husband and her racist grandmother Jane. Goldie is of course broke and decides to become a surrogate for Bryan and David. They all meet and hit it off. Goldie is in it for the money so she can follow her dreams and become a lawyer while making her daughters life better. And she wants to help Bryan and David very badly. Jane ends up finding out where they are and comes out to L.A. to try and take them home. Comedy ensues. Jane is pretty hilarious because of her backwards thinking and outspoken personality.
The reason this show works is because of the chemistry that the entire cast has with each other. Not one character really stands out, they all seem to play off of each other well to make for a good show. The show is heartfelt and pretty funny. Ryan Murphy really can’t do any wrong as a writer lately. First with Nip/Tuck, then Glee, then American Horror Story, and now The New Normal. The man is pretty much gifted for knowing what will work on T.V. This show is worth giving a shot to. *** out of ****.
Sons of Anarchy (FX)
Hells yes! Sons of Anarchy is back for another season. This FX drama about a biker gang in Northern California is so damn good. Now in it’s 5th season and still going strong the club has new challenges to face. Jax overthrew Clay as the president of the Son’s and is now trying to run the club while a new villain has emerged. Damon Pope played by Harold Perrineau (yes that’s Walt’s dad from LOST) is the new villain. He is out to seek vengeance on the Son’s for his daughters murder in the season before. She was killed as a retaliation towards the One-Niners gang. So now Pope is out to get them and kill Jax. Opie has stepped away from the club this season because of all the shit he’s been dealing with. Especially with Clay killing his dad Piney last season. Gemma is now seeing some guy who runs an escort service and her and Clay aren’t together anymore. Oh and Tara is still as depressed as ever. Dealing with her two kids while Jax is busy with the club and facing the fact that she can’t be a doctor anymore. Well not a good one with her fucked up hand. Oh and there is going to be a side storyline that (I assume) will come into play later this season. There has been a string of home invasions in Charming and and the end of the first episode of season 5 you see Unser’s house being invaded and three masked men beating the shit out of him. Plus one of them has a fake leg! Shit’s about to get real.
I for real cannot get enough of this show. It’s so bad ass. There is so much that happens episode to episode and I cannot wait to dive more into this season. I’m excited over the whole Pope drama. If you watched the first episode you know the guy is ruthless. Plus the home invasions seem interesting. And I’m eager to see where the relationship goes with Gemma and her new guy that runs the escort service. I highly recommend that you catch up on this show asap so you can jump in on this season and know what’s up. *** and ½ out of ****.
NEWS on: American Idol (FOX) / The Voice (NBC) / The X-Factor (FOX) :
So many changes in music reality competitions have emerged these past few weeks. American Idol officially announced its new judges for the upcoming season. Randy Jackson will be joined by Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, and Keith Urban. Jackson and Seacrest will be the only returning people that have been constant during the entire series. I’m expecting a mild revival of the show. The new judges will bring in interest from people who have left watching the FOX phenomenon. Lets just see if these new judges can keep our attention and bring the ratings back.
The Voice just announced that for their spring season Cee Lo Green and Christian Aguilera will be replaced by Usher and Shakira. Cee Lo and X-Tina are expected to return the following fall.
And with X-Factor still being pretty boring it has gotten slightly better. They’ve ditched Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger and replaced them with Demi Lovato and the ever present hot mess which is Britney Spears. The show isn’t great but Demi Lovato is likeable and I assume (like me) that most people are tuning in to see if Britney will have another meltdown and shave her head. -RC