>TV Round-Up

>At last, the first TV Round-Up of the fall season…..

Chuck: Pilot
Saw this one early thank to the wonder of the Internet and I have to admit, I liked it. Yes, the first half was a bit slow as we set up Chuck’s world and the situation, but the last half of it was a lot of fun. Of course, being the Firefly fan that I am, any time you employ a former Firefly actor, I’m contractually obligated to tune in (well, except for Desparate Housewives…cause even my fandom for Nathan Fillion doesn’t go THAT far). Adam Baldwin was great in this episode and I hope the poor guy gets a series that runs a full season or more. Meanwhile, I will admit the solution on how to difuse the bomb was a bit obvious based on the first few minutes of the episode (anyone else not shocked that Chuck downloaded the virus to kill the computer?), but overall it was a fun show and one I’m willing to give a chance.

Heroes: Four Months Later
Can we say “product placement” boys and girls? Nissan sponsors the limited commerical interruption of the first hour of the second season only to have the obligatory, “Here, have a cool Nissan” scene dropped in as Claire gets her new-car from HRG. Which when that’s the most memorable and exciting part of the first half of the show, you know something is seriously wrong.

Maybe I’m not you average Heroes fan, but I find it a bit absurd that the first ten or so minutes of last year’s season finale and this year’s season premiere are nothing more than “summing up what we’ve already seen.” I’m guessing most people on the planet have heard of this show by now and know the basic premise–what with the unrelented promotion of the show all summer long. So, to have this re-cap….kind of a waste of valuable screen time in my book.

And then, the rest of the first half is kind of a “let’s catch up on where we’ve all been for four months.” Only done in the least interesting way possible….seriously, could someone send over a copy of every Buffy season premiere ever done to show how you interestingly and quickly cover a time-gap without boring the audience to tears? Or maybe Heroes should beg Joss Whedon to come write for the show….cause damn that would be awesome.

Anyway, after the plodding first half, things pick up a bit–and you can pretty much identify that point as “When George Takai shows up.” Things start to get interesting and we see what the threat for this year will be–the past is catching on the original members of the Company. Interesting to see that someone inside is intent on taking out original members while HRG, Parkman and Mohinder seem to want to expose and bring down the company. (On a related note, how does HRG afford a nice house in LA and a new car for Claire working at the equivalent of Kinko’s?!?) I]m going to call it right now that the evil person skulking about is a Patrelli–either Momma or the much-referenced-but-never-seen Papa Patrelli. And it’s a shame they had to kill of George Takai’s character since he was one of my (few) favorites on the show. But with Hiro in the past and able to jump around in time, maybe we’ll see him again.

Oh and one last thing–I think the effect of coming with a killer cliffhanger every week are showing. Last year that was the show’s big strength…this year they’re 0 for 1…that first one was not exactly compelling, jaw dropping or edge of your seat.

Reaper: Pilot
Get over the fact that it’s on CW and just watch this show. I believe the pilot re-airs tonight and tomorrow. So you really need to do yourself a favor and watch or tape it in one of the showings. Well, maybe not watch tonight becuase you really need to check out the series-premiere of Bionic Woman, which is awesome…

But back to Reaper.

Basic premise: Slacker-guy works at this show’s equivalent of Home Depot with his best friend and the cute-girl he’s got a crush on (and she may like him as well). On his 21st b’day, weird stuff starts happening and he finds out his parents sold his soul to the devil, whose come to collect. Only he’s not on the one-way ticket to hell….seems hell is overcrowded and souls are escaping. Our hero is tasked with being Satan’s bounty-hunter and, well, it goes from there.

I have this odd feeling this show will suffer the same fate Buffy did in terms of trying to recruit fans–people scoffing at the premise. But that said, once you accept the premise, this show is a huge amount of fun. The scene where our two slacker buddies sit and wait for the Dust Buster given to them by Satan to recapture the first lost soul to recharge was a riot. And this show is full of funny moments like that. And Ray Wise as Satan….hysterical.

A great cast, good writing and the first episode is directed byKevin Smith. Definitely worth a look and I think I’ll be keeping up with this one for the few first weeks of the season.


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