Jul 11 2013 10:00am

The Warm Glowing Warming Glow: Summer 2013 TV

In between all the movie and book reviewing, you’d think I wouldn’t have time to watch as much television as I do. Fortunately for you, I have absolutely no life and a highly active Netflix account.

Summer 2013 is turning out to be a pretty decent season for television. Cable generally has more going on during the networks’ off season, mostly because cable doesn’t generally adhere to traditional seasonal schedules. Networks have become more flexible in recent years (particularly by staggering fall and mid-season premieres over a 2-3 month period), but summer is still about as dead as a Friday night: nothing but news shows, burnoff cancellations, and the lowest dregs of reality TV.

This year we’re going back to the miniseries format, sorta, with Under the Dome, a remake of a Stephen King novel. The miniseries is ripe for renewed interest. It’s the perfect way to take wild risks without decimating your very limited schedule or completely alienating your viewership, and at this point it’s back to being as unique as it was in 1977 when ABC accidently “created” the format when it couldn’t figure out what to do with Roots. Last year we got Hatfields & McCoys, which was a massive hit for The History Channel. CBS is trying to replicate that bolt of lightning with Dome, and with a premiere that pulled in 13.1 million viewers and 3.3 among adults 18-49, so far so good.

Dome is set up as a kind of backdoor pilot: if the miniseries does well, they’ll renew it for a second season, otherwise no harm no foul. The rest of the not completely craptacular season is comprised mostly of middling to decent television, with a few golden grains hidden amongst the chaff.

(Shows marked with an “*” are new.)

Arrested Development (Hulu): The first person I see with the license plate “ANUSTART” gets my undying love and affection.

Being Human (UK) (BBC America, Sat 10p—premieres 7/13): This is the final season, which is about two seasons longer than it needed to be.

Breaking Bad Breaking Bad (AMC, Sun 9p—premieres 8/11): Welcome to the end.

Burn Notice (USA, Thu 9p)

Continuum (Syfy, Fri 10p): One of the better meh-level shows on this summer. There’s vast room for improvement...improvements they don’t seem to be undertaking.

Copper (BBC America, Sun 10p): The Evil Mastermind plot setting up the new season is a breath of fresh air for a show that isn’t strong enough to support the complex stories it wants to tell.

*Crossing Lines (NBC, Sun 9p)


Falling Skies Falling Skies (TNT, Sun 10p)

The Glades (A&E, Mon 9p): This show is still on? Really? Can anyone tell me anything at all about it other than it’s one of a zillion dramedy cop shows currently clogging up the airwaves?

Hell on Wheels (AMC, Sat 9p—premieres 8/3)

The Killing (AMC, Sun 8p): Season 3 is doing well solely by having dropped that asinine Rosie Larson plot. But it’s still very far from quality television.

*Low Winter Sun (AMC, Sun 10p—premieres 8/11): Two cops kill one of their own then try to cover it up. It could be the next Breaking Bad. Or, more likely, the next The Killing.

Moone Boy *Moone Boy (Hulu—premieres 7/10): Chris O’Dowd! Need I say more?

Primeval: New World (Syfy, Sat 10p): Once Cutter left, this show ceased to exist for me.

*Sinbad (Syfy, Sat 9p): A failed BBC spectacle makes it way to Syfy, filling the time until Sharknado premieres.

Teen Wolf (MTV, Mon 10p): Don’t mind me, I’ll just be over here fangirling like a desperate teenager.

True Blood (HBO, Sun 9p): I can’t. I just can’t. And no amount of Eric Northman impersonating a whooping crane expert can win me over. Theresa Delucci is a braver woman than I.

*Under the Dome (CBS, Mon 10p): There’s a lot of room to grow, and a lot of ways to fail. Cautious optimisim. Grady Hendrix has reviewer duty.

The Venture Brothers The Venture Brothers (Adult Swim, Sun 12a): “Why is it every time I need to get somewhere, we get waylaid by jackassery?”

Wilfred (FX, Thu 10p): I just don’t even know where to begin to even attempt to describe this show. Go watch it. Don’t think about it, just go and thank me for it later.

Say you’re like me and you’ve added a bunch of new and returning shows to your viewing schedule, but still have a lot of TV-watching hours to kill. Summer is the perfect time to catch up on all those shows you missed or willfully abandoned. I’ll have a “Don’t Touch That Dial” post coming up soon that covers a few shows SFFers should watch if you haven’t already, but until then, here’s a look at what’s occupying my laptop/DVD player/mom’s hacked Netflix Watch Instantly account until the fall.

Alphas (never seen before): I know absolutely nothing about it except that it’s an American sci-fi show about superpowered young adults. Don’t know the quality or tone, but I’m feeling adventurous.

American Gothic (never seen before): All I know is that it sounded intriguing when it was on in 1996, but I can’t recall ever watching it.

The Americans (catching up): Started this and loved it, but there’s just so much TV to watch that it slipped off my radar. By the time you’re reading this, I’m sure I’ll be having a total Cold War existential crisis about having to wait a whole year for more eps.

Dead Like Me (never seen before): Just started the second/final season. It’s clear where Bryan Fuller made his departure—as the quality drops precipitously—but it’s still more or less enjoyable (although sometimes it’s so insipid I want to pull my hair out). The cast and the unique story, as per Bryan Fuller usual, makes it stand out no matter how meh it gets.

Deadwood (rewatch): The great Alan Sepinwall has just started up his annual summer rewatch and review of Deadwood. I’ve followed along since the beginning, tackling an episode a week. His rewatch is awesome for a variety of reasons, most especially because former cast and crew keep turning up in the comments. The inestimable Jim Beaver is a regular contributor, and always has insightful, charming, and fascinating things to say about his role, his personal life, and his interpretations of the show itself and the behind-the-scenes stuff.

Defying Gravity (never seen before): H/t to the commenter in one of the previous “Don’t Touch That Dial” posts who recommended this to me. It’s moved to the top-ish of my Netflix queue, and, if I stay on schedule—and I never do—I should get to it by September.

Dollhouse (finishing): My work schedule changed after the first season, and without a DVR and reliable internet access at the time, I lost track of it. Then it was cancelled and I couldn’t even catch it on reruns. It’s been in my queue for ages, and I think it’s finally time to finish it off.

Elementary (catching up): Another show I thoroughly enjoy (especially the Tumblr fan posts) but lost track of somewhere around episode 6. I absolutely loathe CBS’ online player for watching shows. Half the time the quality is fine, but during peak streaming hours, the quality is drops to about 3 steps below someone recording a TV show off the screen using their 5 year old cellphone and then uploading it to Youtube. Catching up is going to require some creative ingenuity on my part.

Fringe (never seen before): I’ve said for years now that I’d eventually give Fringe another shot, and this summer has unexpectedly become the right time to do it. As of now, I’m about halfway through the first season. I hate it even more than I hated it the first time around, so it’s been a struggle bearing with it. It gets better, right? RIGHT? The only thing keeping me going is that it is perfect for the gym. It is just distracting enough to get me through my workout yet annoying enough to not require my undivided attention.

Hawaii Five-O (catching up): Shut up. Don’t judge me. Besides, I only watch it when I’m doing laundry or washing dishes. It’s not like my whole life revolves around Alex O’Loughlin taking his shirt off or anything...OK, so maybe I have an addiction to Alex O’Loughlin. There are worse things I could be obsessed with. Probably.

Misfits (never seen before): See: Alphas except British.

Moonlight (rewatch): Yes, I’m rewatching Moonlight for the millionth time. Alex O’Loughlin has deliciously sexy hair and is a shirtless vampire in LA. Hate on, haters. Plus: Jason Dohring. One can never go wrong with Jason Dohring. Never. It’s physically impossible. He’s just that amazing.

Southland (never seen before): Like Fringe and Breaking Bad, Southland has been on my list for a long while. I love cop shows like nobody’s business, and always thought Ben McKenzie was one of the best things about the already entertaining The O.C.

Wonderfalls (rewatch): I’ve seen this show a dozen times at least, but this summer The A.V. Club is covering it in a weekly rewatch, so I’m following along. One of my favorite shows ever produced, and its unmerited cancellation is one of the great crimes in television history.

X-Files (rewatch): Actually, I started my X-Files rewatch back in January when TV went on hiatus, but got distracted by new TV premieres and it fell off my radar. If nothing else, it’s great fun to go back to a childhood favorite. I was too cowardly to watch the earliest seasons when I was a wee lass, so it’s a lot of fun to see Mulder and Scully so fresh faced and adorable. I’ve purposefully avoided Meghan Dean’s rewatch because I didn’t want to be spoiled, but once I get back into it’ll be fun to play along.

Alex Brown is an archivist, research librarian, writer, geeknerdloserweirdo, and all-around pop culture obsessive who watches entirely too much TV. Keep up with her every move on Twitter, or get lost in the rabbit warren of ships and fandoms on her Tumblr.

Where's The Bridge?
2. Athanor
What about Arrow, returning in October?
Alex Brown
3. AlexBrown
@eugenie: This is not an exhaustive list. Plus, I forgot about it, and wouldn't have had anything to say about it anyway.

@Athanor: I'll refer you back to the subtitle of this post: "Summer 2013 TV." When fall comes around, I'll cover Arrow. The networks are still shooting pilots; the final fall schedule is long from solidified. Arrow was renewed ages ago - smash hit and all.
4. Bugi
If I remember right, Alphas and Defying Gravity (albeit a great show) are discontinued and without conclusion
Joe Vondracek
5. joev
Misfits (never seen before): See: Alphas except British.
If you think Misfits is like a British Alphas, you are in for a surprise.

Moone Boy is awesome.

Wonderfalls was on Fox, right? Yep, that explains everything.

There are many other new or returning shows that you don't mention, such as Ray Donovan or Covert Affairs. Seems like the networks and cable have pretty much given up on the "regular" TV seasons that I grew up with.
Joe Vondracek
6. joev
Alphas was cancelled earlier this year. Two seasons, 24 episodes total.

Defying Gravity was cancelled before all of its original 13 episodes had aired. IIRC, ABC didn't air all of the episodes; I watched the final ones online. Despite its "soap opera" aspects, I enjoyed the show. How many TV shows are set in the near-future and involve exploration of our own solar system? Supposedly the show's creator had mapped out three seasons of how it was supposed to progress... I think they shot themselves in the foot by promoting it as "Grey's Anatomy in space." Trivia: Laura Harris, one of the leads, was also one of the leads in Dead Like Me.
7. Bost55
Guess one cannot always account for taste: I'm in my second rewatching of Fringe and, while the jumps in the plotline were a bit disconcerting over the years, the acting was excellent, while I always thought Moonlight was dreck. Elementary is a good show and getting better as the characters get fleshed out; Sherlock was (and to some extent IS) a self-absorbed jackass, but he's learning.

Hawaii Five-O? Really?
Steven Halter
8. stevenhalter
Wilfred: Right, exactly, um, what? Probably the oddest show on right now. Kind of like an adult twisted version of Calvin and Hobbes. Whatever it is exactly, I can't seem to stop watching and don't really want to stop but sometimes I want to and then I don't and then ...
Chris Nelly
9. Aeryl
Hope you enjoy the second season of Dollhouse. It starts kinda slow, but as the cancellation happens, the story takes off, ramping up the excitement and tension into the final run, which is awesome.

If you were only watching it live on FOX, you may not have seen the S1 finale, Epitaph One.

WATCH IT!!! It's on Netflix, the episode after Omega. It's a brilliant episode of television, and it really sets off what will happen in S2.
Alex Brown
10. AlexBrown
@Bugi and joev: Yep. I'm coming in with eyes open on those fronts. And bad marketing can really hurt the show. Advertising that the show was going to solve the murder of Rosie Larsen wasn't the only reason to hate The Killing, but it was the straw that broke the camel's back.

@joev: I know Misfits is different, I just meant that I have absolutely no context for it - like with Alphas - except that it's British.

@Bost: I'm well aware that Hawaii Five-O and Moonlight are terrible shows. Never claimed anything else. But that doesn't mean they aren't a ton of fun to watch. The characters are entertaining, even if the storylines are weaker than watered down Bud at a frat bar.

I like the idea of Fringe, but it's really Anna Torv/Olivia that grates me. There are hints that she can really act when given something to do, but most of the time she's just the worst agent ever. The science is so ridiculous it's not even fringe but completely jumps the shark. And that's not even getting into the bad cop work. The procedural/mystery stuff sucks majorly. I like the characters enough (except Olivia), but Peter's the only one with any real personality, and halfway into season 1 is a long time to still have characters be a bundle of stock tropes. I also absolutely LOATHE how they reduce Olivia to her sexuality. She's introduced having sex (a trope that should just die right now), and continuously defined by her looks, sexual attractiveness, or other men's sexual urges. I trust that it gets better, but right now it's rather rage-inducing.

@steven: Totally.

@Aeryl: Looking forward to finally making my Whedon watching complete. And thanks for the head's up :)
11. Dre
Misfits is amazing (though, for me, it begins to fall off in quality after the second season). Still the first two seasons are amazing and pretty much 'it's about people with powers' is about the only thing it has in common with Alphas. It's a rude, often crass delight and I can't recommend it highly enough. :)
12. Bost55
AlexBrown: To each his/her own, I suppose. Your complaints about Fringe, juxtaposed against your defense of Hawaii Five-O, don't convince me all that much. I have watched Five-O and the "procedural" stuff (a Navy Seal gets to be the head of a tiny State police agency with essentially unlimited authority--despite the occasional whining of the two Governors, one of whom McGarrett kills--and never has to fill out paperwork or testify at trial, etc) really, really bugs me. Oh, did I mention the acting? Is it fun to watch? From time to time, once I can get past the frat-boy style excuse for relationships between most of the characters.

No doubt that Fringe could have been a lot better. Yes, the Season 5 Olivia practically wasn't there (not Torv's fault), but I disagree with your view of her as being defined by her sexuality. I thought she was a damaged character that overcame her initial limitations. Walter was wonderful and the few episodes that highlighted Broyles and Astrid were a nice change (particularly when Broyles got high on LSD by accident).

Don't get me started on vampires...
Constance Sublette
13. Zorra
The Glades!

It's the most colorful pure lite entertainment ever. It also features in a supporting role, one of the few latinos you will see on screen, and another supporting role (the lady boss) is latina mulatta. It's just fun. No jerking of terror, danger or anything like. Kind of like a Miss Marple, except it's a guy with astounding abs, in Florida.

Love, C.
14. S.S. White
FRINGE does get better. It picked up and really started gelling halfway through the first season, and by the season finale, I was hooked. By time you get to the end of season two, you're not going to want to stop watching, IMHO.
15. bookzombie
Just to be picky - and because I see this a lot when US folks comment on UK series - Sinbad was broadcast on Sky1, not BBC. Not all British shows were made for the BBC - even those shown on BBC America!
Alex Brown
16. AlexBrown
@Dre: Good to hear. Can't wait.

@Bost: The difference is that Moonlight and Hawaii Five-O don't take themselves seriously, where Fringe does. Fringe behaves like it's doing the best thing this side of the last few seasons of The X-Files and it's very clearly not. But just to reiterate, I've only gotten through half of the first season this rewatch, and when it first aired I made it only through the 1st season finale. The only reseaon I decided to give it another go was that everyone says it gets better by season 3. By then, maybe Olivia isn't defined by her sexuality, but in the first half of season 1 she most definitely is, to me anyway. By the first half of season 1, all the characters are blank boards except Peter (though much of my love of him is leftover teenage adoration of Pacey). So without a plot or characters to connect with, I'm left with shoddy science and non-existence procedurals, which leaves me frustrated and annoyed. I don't watch
Moonlight and Hawaii Five-O for the plot, but for the characters.
17. Bost55
Zorra: I had been watching The Glades but it's getting a bit irritating. First, I don't think they can make up their minds; are the in the Everglades or in one of the ritzy suburbs of Miami? Second, FDLE doesn't do what they do in the show (i.e., regularly investigating murders that local law enforcement would ordinarily be doing). Third, the main character keeps arresting people with little or no probable cause--his agency would be sued so much for false arrest it would bankrupt the State. I do like the diversity of the characters and actors, though. Just wish it'd make it more consistent.

S.S. White: Gotta agree!
Steven Halter
18. stevenhalter
I enjoyed Fringe and it morphs interestingly as the series goes on. The episodes featuring Walter are gold.
Alex Brown
19. AlexBrown
@Zorra and Bost: I tend to like my cop shows less Miss Marple and more action-y, so I'll probably give it a pass for now. Once I get cable again, I'll probably pick it up if it's on and there's nothing else I want to watch and I'm doing the dishes or something - that was how I watched White Collar and Burn Notice. But it's good to know that it's better than what I thought.

@s.s. and Steven: I'm not giving up on it this time. Just have to get through this slog.

@bookzombie: Thanks for the clarification. Was going by what was stated on other sites.
Shelly wb
20. shellywb
And Suits is starting up again next Tuesday, with the always-magnificent Gina Torres. It has a great cast and some sharp writing, even if it's nothing like a real law firm (actually, that's a plus, considering how boring those can be...).
21. AcornArmy
You should give Pretty Little Liars a try. I just started watching it last week, and I've already caught up to the current episodes; that's how much I like it. The show is completely insane. You have to suspend your disbelief more than usual, maybe somewhere in low-Earth orbit, but once you do that it's well worth watching.
Allana Schneidmuller
22. blutnocheinmal
I loved Bryan Fuller's shows Dead Like Me and Pushing Daisies.
If you can catch re-runs or online episodes on NBC or Hulu of Hannibal, I can't recommend enough.
Bryan Fuller really brings his A-game.
(An actually interesting 'law enforcement' show that's about serial killers, visually referencing Kubrick's Shining, food porn, intelligent and witty characters... and it even passes the Bechdel test! There's not just one, but five women on this superb cast.)
23. GregM91606
Fringe had a mediocre pilot, so I skipped it, and didn't start watching again until the last episode of season 1--they revamped the show halfway through season 1 to make it serialized, which means that seasons 2 and 3 are *awesome.*

To potentially catch up with: If you haven't watched Scandal, Alex, it's insanity, but more realistic about politics & human motivations than House of Cards--and doesn't take itself anywhere near as seriously, and is therefore far more fun. The Booth at the End is a very well made series on hulu, and the first season's only two hours in total. I'm still catching up on Parks & Rec and Archer, and am working my way through season 1 of Cheers. I'm behind on TV. Soon I will dig myself out. Soon...
24. Alright Then
Now's a good time to catch up on Mad Men. I'm currently rewatching the first season, half for completist's sake and half in preparation for next season---the seventh and supposedly the last.

The series has had its ups and downs (what series doesn't?), but when it's good, man oh man, it's really good.
25. Dunn Hatani
Television has a huge problem these days:
Any show that airs now has to compete with every other show on televisoin (almost).

This presents a problem for me because I feel like any good sci-fi show really needs time to develop before it gets really good. For example, if you go back and watch the first 2 seasons of Star Trek:TNG, Stargate, or even X-Files, you will notice that those shows were a little rough starting out. But since they only had to compete with the other shows in their time slot they survived.

Luckily for me I never saw any marketing for Defying Gravity so I watched it and I immediately loved the premis. It was ever so slightly "Grey's Anatomy in space" but that certainly wasn't its strongest point. Although that marketing tactic likely did kill the show. I would have loved to see more of this show.

Alphas had some great potential (in my mind) in the super people world. Heroes failed for me due to too much fantasy and not enough SCIENCE fiction. Alphas really seemed to hit on the people with abilities but with plausible explanations thing. I wish that this show had a at least another season to mature.

Continuum is the show that I'm most excited about right now. I agree that it has vast room for improvements. I hope that they get the time to make them. One thing that I love about this show is its integration of not so distant future tech. The social commentary is also rather interesting as are the moral dilemmas, (although S02E09 seemed to have a time travel-101 "no duh" moment). Being a Canadian produced show I have high hopes that this show will continue to get funding for at least a few more seasons. Perhaps beyond that. We shall see.

Falling Skies has been an entertaining show and even somewhat interesting. The plot twists have been pretty decent so far. I'm somewhat skeptical about the latest one but I'll give it the chance to play out. I like the Pope character but I wish that they would find a spot to kinda land his character. By that I mean that they sometimes show him, ya know, being an actuall human being and having some character development, but then they turn around and put him back to the douche that he was the first day that we met him. Character development means that the character needs to develop, not be hot or cold when the dialouge requires it. But I suppose I can give that a bit more time too.

Anyhow I think that I've talked too much already. ;)
Alex Brown
26. AlexBrown
@shelly: Gina Torres!

@Acorn: Huh. I'll give it a whorl.

@blutnocheinmal: Dude. Hannibal. DUDE. I'm waiting until the fall premiere, then I'm reviewing the hell out of that fantastic show.

@Greg and Alright: My mom looooooves Scandal, so I'll have to watch it eventually. Hadn't heard any thoughts on Booth, so good to know. And yes to Mad Men, Parks & Rec, and Archer. All fantastic shows no TV viewer should go without.

@Dunn: I've put Continuum on the backburner for pretty much the same reason you mentioned at the beginning: there's just too much good stuff on that I don't have time to waste on mediocre shows or ones that don't hook me from the get go.
Jim Adcock
27. dlairman
Alphas I considered a meh show, like Continuum... worth watching, but not if you have something better to do.

Misfits, OTOH, do not pass go, do not collect $200... go directly to ASBO public service! Don't wait!

I liked Fringe, because the characters were interesting and the stories were cool... just don't expect the overarching story to make much sense when it is all said and done... inconsistent and dangling threads. But I liked it anyway, in spite of itself.

Elementary rocks, as does Sherlock, each for their own reasons.

Falling Skies falls into my meh category, as does Defiance (which I mostly watch for the music).

My catch-up this summer has been Lost. A friend spoiled the secret of the island last year, but mostly I don't remember the details and came in with lowered expectations, but am enjoying it, so I should be OK.

My .02
28. Bill West
My favorite summer show is Longmire. Lou Diamond Phillips, A.Martinez, and Gerald McRaney as supporting cast and an interesting cast of characters.
29. wingracer
Count me in with the people that hate Fringe. Which is strange, at first glance it seems tailor made for me but I just can't stand it. It bores me to tears, complete turn off.

I absolutely understand why Moonlight got cancelled. The acting isn't great and some of the episodes are pretty cringe worthy. There's just one little problem, I LOVED IT! I honestly can't say why, it's the opposite of fringe for me. It's not made for me and isn't done nearly as well, yet I love it and hate Fringe. Is that weird?
30. AO
I, and several others that I've spoken to, had that exact same reaction to Fringe. Fortunately for me I like background noise while playing PC video games and kept tuning in to use it in that capacity. At around the halfway point in S1 I realized that the show had improved enough for me to begin devoting more than 20% of my attention to it.

I think that Continuum has improved in S2. Imo it could still use a fair bit of work, but it's heading in the right direction.

I've been pleasntly surprised by Graceland.

Btw, imo a lot of genre shows start off, let's say less than ideally, and need time to find their rhythmn (examples include most Star Trek's, Babylon 5, Buffy, Angel and Fringe). So it makes sense to me that some of these newer ones might improve with time.
Andrew Knighton
31. gibbondemon
I'm with everybody else who's commented on Misfits. It's one of the best British TV shows of the past decade - weird, funny, and sympathetically showing a side of British society that TV generally misses. The most recent season had some problems with the way it structured its plots, but it's still well worth seeing it through.
Tony Linde
32. tonylinde
@Bill West: spot on about Longmire, exellent show.
33. Action Kate
If you're talking Alphas, I hope you've seen the sister shows Eureka and Warehouse 13. Alphas was interesting but ultimately very depressing.
Eureka and Warehouse 13 are much lighter while still covering some really important topics. The characters are wonderful, there's some decent acting, and neither show uses the Reset Button. When something happens, it happens, and the characters have to deal with it in real time and in sequence. Actions have consequences.

If you're looking for a show to catch up with, I might also suggest Leverage, which went for five seasons. Marvelous banter, fantastic characters, great acting, brilliant plots, never makes your head hurt, also no Reset Button.
Steven Halter
34. stevenhalter
I have been enjoying Perception on TNT. Dr. Daniel Pierce (Eric McCormack) is a professor oof neuropsychiatristry at a Chicago university who consults with the FBI. Daniel also suffers from schizophrenia and experiences hallucinatory clues from his subconscious that aid in obtaining insight into the crimes.
Alex Brown
35. AlexBrown
@dlairman: I almost took on Lost (I also know the ending), but went with Fringe instead. I can only handle so much SFF frustration in one period. I've encountered Damon Lindelof in other environments and haven't been impressed.

@Bill West, tonylinde: Longmire is definitely on my list of shows to marathon. I've got it queued up for the winter hiatus.

@wingracer: I totally agree with Moonlight. It's such not a good show, but hell if it isn't fun. As a side note: turns out Alex O'Loughlin is actually a pretty good actor when he's allowed to be his native Australian. Check out Oyster Farmer sometime.

@AO, wingracer: I had this great moment of excitment right around Olivia's kidnapping. She was phenomenal in it, and then went back to being crap again. Fringe is basically what True Blood is for me right now. If I didn't see that they were capable of achieving their inherent potential, I wouldn't watch. It's struggling to get better, but I have cautious optimisim that it will.

@gibbondemon et al: Yay! I'm even more excited about Misfits now.

@Action Kate: Honestly, Eureka and Warehouse 13 didn't do anything for me. They were a little too light for me. And I sorta gave up on both after the first 5 or so eps. But if they're worth going back to, maybe I'll have it be next summer's retry.

@steven: Totally forgot about Perception. Should peek in on that soon...
36. pilgrim35
I agree with you about Wonderfalls, it was excellent. I started watching Hannibal because Caroline Dhavernas was in it. Best tv decision of the year.
Another quirky and hilarious show was The Middleman. If you've never seen it, it's only 12 episopes and chock full of pop culture references and snappy dialogue.
Theresa DeLucci
37. theresa_delucci
Hannibal was excellent. The darker flip side of Wonderfalls/Pushing Daisies, etc. So many genre film references aside from the obvious Harris canon - Blowout, Shining, etc. And the cast! Eddie Izzard! Gillian Anderson! Ellen Muth from Dead Like Me playing a woman called Georgia. Again. It's great to see Caroline Dhavernos again, too.

As for summer TV, well, True Blood positively sucks. What a freaking tired mess. Dexter has been excellent lately. I'm glad it's not outstaying its welcome and coming to its natural conclusion. Not many episodes into the new season yet, but it's looking good so far. Last season was great. I'm mostly waiting for Breaking Bad. I tried The Bridge and... eh... I know Diane Kruger's character is supposed to be irritating, but she's gone right into unlikeable. Maybe like Will Graham, she needs a pack of stray dogs to garner audience sympathy? The rest of the cast is great though.

Thanks for mentioning the Sepinwall Deadwood rewatch. I try to rewatch that and Six Feet Under every year. And Rome or Spartacus alternating years. (I need my gladiator fix apparently.)

I still need to watch Orphan Black. I know, I know. Stupid summer sunshine tempting me to leave my sofa.
Alex Brown
38. AlexBrown
@pilgrim: The Middleman! Yes! Love it.

@Theresa: I think Dexter should've bowed out a few seasons ago, but I totally agree about True Blood. At this point, I'm only watching it because there's nothing else on on Sunday night. I keep starting The Bridge and then getting distracted. Going to have to wait and dedicate a mini-marathon of it, methinks.

When I posted this review, I forgot how much I liked the Orphan Black pilot when I saw it at Wondercon in March, so I've started catching up on it. I might swap True Blood for Orphan Black. And I love that I'm not the only person who does annual rewatches of beloved shows :)

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