Fall TV Review

The Simpsons/The Cleveland Show/Family Guy/American Dad
Also known as 3/4s of the Seth MacFarlane evening. I thought spinning Cleveland off of Family Guy might make a weak show, but they came up with a good new cast. I still find most Simpsons funny, and American Dad has really grown on me. B

Curb Your Enthusiasm
I’ve only watched one episode before this season (not really loving the comedy of discomfort), but I did like Seinfeld and wanted to check out the reunion. Unsurprisingly, I really liked the ones with the Seinfeld cast and was meh about the others (Larry needs strong foils to bounce off, and Jerry and Jason are best against him). If you only watch a couple, be sure and see the last two. C (season), A (Seinfeld cast)

Metalocalypse expanded to 30 minutes this year, and it’s only better. In a world where a metal band is the seventh largest economy on Earth, they are idiots and the show is hilarious, Spinal Tap on a bigger level. B+

The Prisoner
The original? Fantastic. This remake? Horrible. Way to jettison all the great ideas from the old series, guys. D

The Daily Show/The Colbert Report
Some people thought with the executive and legislative branches leaning left these shows would miss a step. Not a chance, they still make me laugh as often as they did last year. A

Oh Heroes, why can’t I quit you? At least this season is the best since the first – please don’t bring Mohinder back again. C+

I’d prefer to have more Firefly, but if I can’t I’ll happily take this Nathan Fillion mystery show with my favorite family on TV. B+

I don’t like it as much as I liked the original miniseries, but it’s a pretty good remake. Judgement not final, only four episodes aired so far. B

The pilot was incredibly good, and the tone varies on episodes based on which creator is writing. Still, I never thought I’d be watching another show set in high school and I’m hooked. B

Cougar Town
I certainly wasn’t expecting this to be my favorite new comedy, the only one I’m keeping, but maybe I should have since it’s from the creator of Scrubs. B

Soon to be canceled, but I tuned in because I love the movie, and it was a decent take. C+

Best new show, and with “Believe” showed the emotional core that positions it as a worthy successor to Lost. A-

30 Rock
The more absurd it gets, the funnier it gets. B+

Last season was ok, but this season has been promising so far as the big bad is unpowered Kandorians. Clark is using his powers at last, even though his uniform isn’t the version we know. B-

I wouldn’t say this is my favorite Joss Whedon show, but it’s the only one he’s done where there are no clear heroes and villains. Everyone is damaged in some fashion and it has rich, morally complex storytelling (see “Belonging”). Looking forward to seeing the rest. B+

The second season didn’t start out so great by killing off my favorite character, but they’ve gone in some surprising directions. B-

Stargate Universe
I hadn’t watched any of the other Stargate series, but hearing that John Scalzi was consulting on this made me watch. I think I should stop and go back if he starts writing. C-

Legend of the Seeker
The first season was ok, but suffered from episodes of wildly different tone. Season Two is darker and all around better. Adding Cara, a Mord’Sith, to the team was a great idea, and it doesn’t hurt that she’s easy on the eyes. Most improved show of the year, gone from try to watch to must watch. For all fans of fantasy series. B

Erratic as usual, but a couple have been great. Bring back Taylor and Justin, please. B