The Double Phoenix

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Archive for the ‘TV’ Category

My comments on various TV Shows

Dollhouse – Omega

Posted by spragujs on May 9, 2009

OmegaLast night was the finale of Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse.  We don’t know yet whether it’ll be the season or series finale, but based on the ratings, most people are guessing series.

I was actually a little disappointed compared to the previous episode.  There’s a lot to be said about maintaining some mystery in a series like this.  The show didn’t tell us everything by any means, but I feel like I know too much about it now.  Alpha downloaded a bunch of people into himself in order to become better than regular people, but he only did this after destroying the “wedges” that contained his previous personality.  He had been a criminal who’d volunteered at the Dollhouse in order to get a shortened sentence.  Ballard was right though when he told Topher that he doesn’t believe they can erase the core of who each Doll was, and apparently he’s right, ’cause Alpha was bad before and still is.  Echo tries to help people and that’s what Caroline used to do also, etc.

Anyway, the ending shaped things up to be interesting for next season, if there is one.  Ballard will be working at the Dollhouse to help them try and bring down Alpha (’cause he got away at the end).  Whiskey (aka Dr. Saunders) now knows that she was a Doll.  Could be interesting to see where they go with that, including how Topher apparently imprinted Dr. Saunders with some hatred for Topher himself.  And the outcome of Victor having been all sliced up (’cause Dr. Saunders, however much of a good doctor she is, apparently is no plastic surgeon).  Even if I didn’t enjoy this episode as much as Briar Rose, I’ll still look forward to more if we’re given it!

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DVR Fixed!

Posted by spragujs on May 8, 2009

Woah!  So, AT&T has pretty good service (at least when it comes to new products)!  We got the U-Verse package about a year ago (give or take) and our DVR gave out earlier this week.  My roommate called them at lunchtime today and they tried to get him to sign up for a 12-4 we’ll-come-fix-it timeslot, but he asked for the 4-8 one instead since we’d actually be home then.  (If only we’d known they’d come right away, I’d have pestered him more about calling!)  😉

Anyway, they just brought a new DVR box.  We did lose what we had saved on our old one, but it meant that we wouldn’t get behind anymore.  Also, they have our show programming saved on a server somewhere so we didn’t have to go and reschedule them all or anything.  So, however much I don’t like the scheduling capabilities of their DVR, I have to give AT&T props for the fast service (and of course for the DVR that will record 4 shows at once)!

Posted in Life, TV | Leave a Comment »

DVR Woes

Posted by spragujs on May 7, 2009

My DVR died Tuesday morning.  I watch a lot of TV, as any of my TV posts surely indicate, but the DVR makes it much more manageable (sometimes that should read possible) than if I were to try and watch all those shows in real time.  I can watch one when I eat lunch, or part of one when I eat breakfast.  I can catch up on stuff during the weekend.  The DVR just makes things so very convenient that I’d not willingly give it up.  And it’d be super hard to go back to watching in real time.  As a matter of fact I haven’t watched any TV since Monday night.  Partly because the shows I’d watch on those nights are on too late to watch them when I want to.  Partly because I never got caught up after being out of town for the weekend and so the shows that were on would have been out of sequence for me.  😦  So, now I’m stuck.  At least I’ll be able to watch the Dollhouse finale tonight on the cable box!  And I’ve gotten a lot of audiobook reading done.  😉  Still, I wish my roommate would call AT&T already…

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Dollhouse – Briar Rose

Posted by spragujs on May 5, 2009

Briar RoseWow, so this episode of Dollhouse was pretty crazy.  Echo works to save a little girl who was kept captive by a guy who pimped her out (all machinated by Tohper in quite the genius way).  Alpha (Wash!) shows up at the Dollhouse with Agent Ballard.  (“Shows up” is so not the right way to put it, but it’s funny now, so I’m leaving it.)  Boyd is still a badass!  (Yay, Boyd!)

So, Ballard’s all upset about all the misleading info he’d had before now, so he takes a new tack.  The Dollhouse is “hidden”.  It seems to be a building that doesn’t exist.  So, he packs up and plans to move thus setting Mellie off.  She’s picked up by her handler (thankfully before seeming to want to jump off a bridge into traffic, however un-Mellie-like that seems to me) and lo and behold they have a tail.  Ballard watches them pull into an underground garage and now he has their location.  He checks out the public building and of course doesn’t find anything, but then he realizes he needs to find them underground.  He hunts down the guy who built the Dollhouse, who’s a specialist in creating spaces that are self-contained and pretty much don’t even need to be attached to the grid.  Ballard gets this guy to help him break into the Dollhouse.  Needless to say the dude’s a genius and also has the capability to shut down the DH’s security, but not with Topher’s personally, super protected computer.  😉  Anyway, turns out that the dude Ballard thought he’d found was actually all sliced up over in AZ (courtesy forensics expert Sierra and a flash drive sent to Dominic).  The whole season so far has been set up (including Ballard and the Dollhouse) to get Alpha in to help Echo escape.  He imprints her with a personality that doesn’t seem to me to be Caraline (from what little we’ve seen).

So, something in the previews for the finale makes me wonder if Caraline was ever Echo’s real personality.  There was a huge fight between Ballard and Boyd and they’re both badasses (not that that’s surprising).  😉  Too.  Much. To Comment. On.  It seems that Alpha is Dollhouse’s Sylar.  He may not be quite as hard to kill, but he’s a hell of a lot smarter.  And he seems to be capable of stealing another person’s knowledge/personality and compounding them.  Hmm, it’s possible he’s more like a Peter at the moment where he can only use one personality at a time, or perhaps not as he seems to have at least overlaid the specialist onto himself.

Oh, and by the way, Victor’s player, Enver Gjokaj, nailed Dominic.  Nailed it.  Also, poor poor Victor getting his face all sliced up by Alpha, a la Dr. Saunders (who was also confronted and used by her former attacker to lure Echo to him).  Did I mention something about there being too much to comment on?!  O.O

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Chuck vs. the Ring

Posted by spragujs on April 28, 2009

Chuck vs the RingWell, yesterday I had a foot long sub from Subway and purchased two seasons of Chuck on DVD.  Then I watched the (please, please, PLEASE let it be season) finale of Chuck on NBC.  Dunno what else I can really do!  Though the Chuck page on NBC has some misleading headers.  In the upper right, last night’s episode is listed as the series finale, but elsewhere on the page it only says season.  [Edit:  Looks like NBC updated the page now, but check this article for a picture of what the Chuck site used to say (the comments may prove interesting as well)…]  And, spoilers below if you haven’t seen the episode yet!

The finale was great!  I don’t think it was quite as good as last week’s episode, but it was off by only a small margin.  Ellie’s wedding gets messed up by Chuck’s spy life, though I wouldn’t have predicted her canceling it.  Chuck called in Casey (and his team of Marines) to save her from Roark.  He then recruits them to plan a super impromptu wedding later that day for Ellie on the beach (as she’d wanted it).  Marines planning a wedding = highly improbable.  However, it was also really blooming funny!  Plus, I think Casey’s sense of honor would have gotten him to do it, and the loyalty of his men would have gotten them to help him, so…  Still, it’s pretty funny and improbable!  And Casey after he and his team save the day says to Chuck, “You rang?”  LMAO!

Bryce Larkin and Sarah are going to take over the Intersect project.  Bryce will have it downloaded into his head.  They asked Chuck to be their analyst at the beginning of the episode, but he turned them down ’cause he just wants to be a normal guy.  At the reception to Chuck’s version of Ellie’s wedding (the first one had been trashed by the gun fight (not to mention that it was cancelled), Bryce’s handler (for lack of a better word) comes to take him for his mission, but Orion flashes (?!) on the guy and knows he’s not CIA, heck he’s presumed dead!  Sarah goes off to save Bryce, and Casey, who she says they’ll know about if they know about Bryce.  Chuck can’t let her go alone, and when Orion realizes he means it, he gives Chuck his arm computer.  Chuck plays in-the-field analyst to Sarah and Casey while they try and get to Bryce.  Chuck eventually finds Bryce in the new intersect room.  Bryce has been shot and eventually dies after giving Chuck a chip that will destroy the Intersect ’cause it’s too dangerous.  Chuck wars with himself and realizes the Intersect is needed.  He downloads it and then destroys it with the chip.  The bad guys come in with Sarah and Casey all but captured, and Chuck 3.0 takes them out.  The last line of the episode, “You guys, I know kung fu!”  To Be Continued flashes across the screen.  I surely hope so, but I’m starting to lose hope after all the stuff I’ve been reading.

Well, this post is so condensed that I’m almost leery to publish it, but there it is; some of the important bits with a couple funny lines.  I think this episode could work as a series finale if necessary, but there are clearly so many ways for this to go that it’d be a huge shame to cancel it now.  Plus, it’s my favorite show on TV right now!  *sigh*  Here’s to another season of Chuck!  (And many more!)  😉

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The State of My TV Viewing

Posted by spragujs on April 27, 2009

Season Finales
Damages – Wednesday April 1
Eleventh Hour – Thursday April 2
Heroes (renewed with shortened season) – Monday April 27
Bones – Thursday May 7
House – Monday May 11
Fringe – Tuesday May 12
CSI – Thursday May 14
Smallville (renewed) – Thursday May 14
Supernatural (renewed) – Thursday May 14
Flashpoint – Friday May 15
Numbers – Friday May 15
Desperate Housewives (renewed) – Sunday May 17
Gossip Girl (renewed) – Monday May 18
One Tree Hill (renewed) – Monday May 18
The Mentalist – Tuesday May 19
Legend of the Seeker (renewed) – May 23
L&O:  SVU (renewed) – Tuesday June 2

Finales for Shows in Trouble?
Life – Wednesday April 8
Terminator: SCC – Friday April 10
Chuck – Monday April 27
Samantha Who? – Thursday April 30
Dollhouse – Friday May 8
The Unit – Sunday May 10
Castle – Monday May 11
Reaper – Tuesday May 26

Limited Runs
Harper’s Island (likely not coming back in the proposed new form) – Thursday April 9 – July 2

Other
Prison Break (canceled) – Friday April 17 to May 15 series finale
Pushing Daisies (canceled) – Saturday May 30 – June 13

Already Been Canceled
Kyle XY
The Middleman
Stargate: Atlantis
My Own Worst Enemy
Life on Mars

Summer Premiers
L&O: CI – Sunday April 19 – 9:00 USA
So You Think You Can Dance? – Thursday May 21 – 8:00 Fox
Burn Notice – Wednesday June 4 – 9:00 USA
Merlin – Sunday June 21 – 8:00 NBC
Eureka – Tuesday July 7 – 9:00 SyFy
Warehouse 13 – Tuesday July 7 – 10:00 SyFy
HGTV Design Star – Sunday July 19
Psych – ? – USA
Mad Men – August (AMC)

Fall Premiers
Sanctuary – Fall 2009
Stargate: Universe – Fall 2009

Most of my data was collected from this blog.  So, based on this info, and making the big assumption that all the shows I’ve listed as in trouble would not be coming back, my TV viewing would be down from 44 shows to 28 for the beginning of next year (not counting any new shows I might be interested in).  That’s a pretty big drop!  (Yes, yes, I know it’s a lot, but keep in mind these aren’t all on at the same time (i.e. season) and I also DVR pretty much everything, so it’s not like I’ve sucked up all my evenings with TV unless I happen to be home.)  Also, I have to admit that I didn’t get around to watching either Life on Mars or My Own Worst Enemy.  I had them all stored up on my DVR for watching till I heard they got cancelled.  Not much reason to start liking something after the fact.  Also, I read about the finale of Life on Mars and was disappointed they went that route, so I decided not to watch even though it ended up being a complete story.

Posted in Chuck, Damages, Dollhouse, Eureka, Heroes, Reaper, Supernatural, The Middleman, TV | Leave a Comment »

Dollhouse – Haunted

Posted by spragujs on April 25, 2009

Dollhouse Haunted

Unfortunately, due to scheduling issues I didn’t post on the last two episodes of Dollhouse.  Episodes that did a lot to further the overall mythology of the show.  I will, however, update on this episode, which went back to a bit more of a formulaic style.  I kinda like the idea that on occasion, the writers (and viewers) can take a break from the “big” story.  It can work to make the mythology of the show that much more exciting when it comes back.  (Let’s just say I’m interested to see this next episode!)

In this episode, Adelle implants a friend of hers into Echo.  This friend had been concerned that someone close to her was going to murder her, and she wanted to come back and solve her own murder (not to mention go to her funeral and see what people actually thought of her – could be a double-edged sword, that).  In the end, the friend does get to figure things out and also makes nice with her remaining family members who previously had thought her a cold, hard woman.  This story just goes to show that in a way, a person(ality) could have everlasting life by either keeping a doll’s body (although they’ve implied a doll is limited to a weekend, or maybe 3 days per “session”) or by jumping from body to body.  Adelle’s friend didn’t decide to abscond with Echo’s body though; she’d felt like she’d lived life to its fullest at that point.

Also, apparently once a year on his birthday, Topher runs a “diagnostic” on a doll, approved by the head of security.  Really, Topher just programs whichever doll to be his best buddy and they have lots of fun for a day.  Boyd as the new head of security (yeah, this blog has missed a lot by not updating on the two episodes before this), approves Sierra for this function and later asks Adelle if she knows about this “diagnostic”.  She says yes, that it only happens once a year, and that Topher of all people needs a chance to connect, basically so he doesn’t forget what it’s like to be a person.

Next week it looks like we may find out who Alpha is (or more likely Dr. Saunders sees him and they’ll cut to black before showing him).  😉  Ballard somehow actually manages to find the Dollhouse too, so this could be interesting!  My boyfriend had an interesting thought on Alpha.  What if Ballard was actually Alpha?  There are probably a lot of reasons why he couldn’t be, but it’d (at the very least) explain his obsession!

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Chuck vs. the Colonel

Posted by spragujs on April 21, 2009

Chuck vs the Colonel

Colonel Casey, that is!  Anyway, I’ve decided not to make this a recap.  At least not mostly.  I read (somewhere, I can’t freaking find it) that the third season of Chuck (should it get picked up for a third season) would take the show in a new direction, and if the end of this episode is any indication, that couldn’t be more true!  There do be SPOILERS below!! Also, before I forget to mention it, I think I giggled every other minute the whole time I was watching this episode.  It was great!

The Intersect has been removed from Chuck’s brain, and Morgan’s going to Hawaii with Anna (and I don’t mean on vacation)?!  I’m good with those changes, as a matter of fact, I’m excited to see where this new direction would take the show, and next Monday’s season (please let it not be the series) finale might give us some idea, but then again maybe not!  It’ll be Ellie and Awesome’s wedding, so we will get that at least.  🙂

Just to see if I can get some people interested, here’s a list from Television without Pity as to why Chuck should be renewed.  I’d also like to add that I’ve almost always been impressed at how they integrate the Buy More scenes with the action/spy stuff.  It’d be really easy to throw things off by switching back and forth, but they manage to integrate the two stories quite well, IMO.

Also, here’s TWoP’s list of the guest stars that Chuck expertly uses.

So, please if you watch Chuck, don’t miss the finale next Monday!  And if you’re interested in watching what’s happened so far (I’d love to addict more people to this show), do me a favor and go buy the DVD sets!  Season one is available now and Season two is ready for preorder.  (Such purchasing can sometimes influence the continuation of the show!)  I have them in my shopping cart for purchase after I get paid again on Friday.  😉

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Chuck vs. the Predator

Posted by spragujs on March 24, 2009

Chuck vs. the Predator

Well, apparently the previews after the last episode were long term ones ’cause this episode only finally (at the end) had General Beckman telling Chuck he needed to become a spy.  She needs Chuck (and doesn’t want to lose him as the intersect) ’cause he’s the only one that’s been able to find Orion, in spite of the teams of analysts she’s had searching for years.  On the down side, Sarah has been following orders (if reluctantly) and Chuck has decided that means she’s not on his side.  Ironically, Casey tells the General at the end that he believes 100% in Sarah’s ability to perform in her mission.  (How sweet!)  😉

Chuck found Orion this episode.  Or at least put together a search that led Orion to him.  Unfortunately, Fulcrum found out that Chuck had found Orion and used Chuck to get to him.  Orion sacrificed himself rather than let Fulcrum at him.  Incidentally, the guy playing the Fulcrum agent was played by the Mummy, so it’s not surprising that the guy died at least twice and came back in this episode!  😉

The Buy More side plot was fairly well integrated plot wise, but also too distracting for my taste.  It went a bit like this: Orion tried to contact Chuck by sending a high tech computer to him at the Buy More.  At the same time the Buy More was supposed to get a fancy new model computer at their store (rather than the original Beverly Hills Buy More) thus setting of a mini Buy More war.  I’m still a bit confused as to whether the fancy new computer was a cover up for Orion sending Chuck his fancy computer or what, ’cause near as I can tell, that actual fancy computer never showed up at the Buy More.  Part of what brought the stories together was when Big Mike hides Chuck’s computer from him in his office and then Fulcrum, Chuck and co., as well as Lester and Jeff all try to steal it from BM’s office at the same time.

Well, next week still doesn’t look like there will be any training.  I’m still a bit disgruntled about that.  Guess I’ll have to go back to not watching the previews.  Things were always better that way!  :-\

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Dollhouse – Man on the Street

Posted by spragujs on March 21, 2009

Man on the Street

Um, wow.  I’d read so many different places that this episode was the one where stuff would start happening.  And just, wow.  Heck, I even watched twice before I wrote this (which I pretty much never do), and only partly so I’d get the details right.  I just can’t figure out how they packed this much stuff into ~40 minutes of show.  O.O

Ok, first off, lots of people don’t really think Dusku can pull off acting all of these different parts.  I’m not here to argue one way or the other, but her Rebecca Mynor was quite adorable, IMO.  Also, interestingly, this episode was almost not about Echo at all (and ironically it’s the one where everything starts happening).  She was more of a plot device than anything else this time.

You know, I still don’t care about Agent Ballard as a character though he’s growing on me.  Maybe a lot of people would be irritated at that, but it’s true. The episode was largely about him though, and it turns out to be by far one of the best so far.  So strange.  Actually, he still feels like a plot device to me too. Hmm…  *ponders*  Spoilers after the break:

Read the rest of this entry »

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