2007 has not been a good year for television, what with the outrageous treatment of professional writers by executives looking to cut corners, as well as the general disregard for quality that the four major networks have demonstrated without fail. Hell, it hasn’t been a good decade for network TV. I find it hard to respect any company that refuses to allow what I consider to be its most valuable employees to unionize, much less make a fair living, and god forbid, maybe even make a few bucks in DVD royalties. But no, instead the assholes in charge continue to replace scripted programming with game shows and reality crapola. NBC and CBS seem to be the worst offenders this year, with rosters of new shows that you could count on one hand. ABC has a few more to offer, but they look shittastic, while Fox actually shows the most promise, with a long list of oddball pilots, a few of which just might fly, but most of which will mysteriously vanish mid-season, to the sound of people scratching their heads and musing to their spouses, “What ever happened to that show that really sucked?” Anyway, here are a few high(and low)lights of the upcoming season of feces.
First of all, I’m not even going to talk about Cavemen. It’s all part of their game, don’t fall for it. Secondly, since when has America become so intrigued by the obscenely wealthy? OK, OK, since way back when, I know, but I still find it disconcerting that ABC has not one, but two shows about the super-rich on their fall roster. Dirty Sexy Money, besides having a name that sounds like a TLC album, purports to be about a lawyer who caters to some rich-ass family. I don’t know if they’re a wacky rich family, like in Arrested Development, or a dramatic rich family, like in Citizen Kane, but either way it promises to be boring. I would say I’m sick of legal shows, but that would require me having enjoyed them at one time in my life, which is just untrue. Big Shots continues the rich douchebag theme, but this time it’s a close-up look at the wacky lives of four CEO’s. Sounds like a real side-splitter. Ahem. No fall TV preview would be complete without mentioning the truly befuddling Carpoolers. I don’t know if they’re kidding or what, but they’d like us to believe that the whole show is some dudes carpooling. Specifically, four slightly different versions of the same suburban cockgobbler, figuring out life while driving or something. Wait, let me guess, they’re all white, straight businessmen. Damn, I was wrong, one of them is faintly dark-skinned. TV is really becoming a world of rich diversity, isn’t it?
Chuck actually looks like something I could conceivably watch, i.e. while drunk. It has some complicated and unlikely plot about some guy accidentally getting an e-mail that contains all the spy secrets in the world, and it’s now imprinted in his brain but he doesn’t know it. It’s kinda like The Bourne Identity, but instead of sexy Matt Damon, it’s just some dude. Then there’s this show Life, about someone who spends all this time in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, and then goes back to being a cop of some sort, but he appreciates life now. Spiritual storylines don’t keep their novelty for too long (unless you’re a good writer), so I don’t know what they’re going to do after, say, the first episode. “I’m still enjoying life so much!”
The soon-to-air drama Cane looks to be a sort of mafia-ish story about Jimmy Smits and his assuredly Latino family running a rum empire. Now that’s my kind of programming! A show about rum, that is, not the boring mafia part. I hope they mostly focus on the rum, and how drunk it gets you, but probably they’ll just have some dramatic stuff involving Jimmy Smits, and he’ll barely even get drunk at all. Ha ha, Jimmy Smits, he thinks he’s a real actor. Next comes The Big Bang Theory, a show that is literally just one-liner after one-liner about how the two main characters are nerds. They’re named Leonard and Sheldon! They have dry-erase boards covered in equations! They’re bad at getting laid! I believe the Revenge of the Nerds films have said all that needs to be said about nerds trying to get laid. Let it go.
When I saw that FOX was debuting a show called New Amsterdam, I got really excited, but then I found out it wasn’t about weed at all, at which point I was heard to exclaim, “Amsterdammit!” No, instead it’s just about some guy who was given eternal life by an American Indian healer, or at least until he finds his one true love, who he died for. Fine, so far not good but not abhorrent. But guess what…now it’s modern times, and he’s a fucking cop! A cop! Is that the best they could come up with? A drama I might actually consider watching is The Sarah Connor Chronicles, a continuation of the Terminator storyline, taking place between the second and third movies. Hooray for the Terminator! Those movies rock out with their respective cocks out, even the third, I don’t care what anyone says. Finally, The Rules for Starting Over is a new show somehow related to the Farrely Brothers, which promises a lot in its preview. By that I mean, it features a monkey. Not just any monkey, a monkey who’s roommates with a person. But it is unclear from the preview whether the monkey will be an integral part of the show. The rest of the show looks kind of stupid, so I really hope they consider making the monkey the lead and slowly firing the rest of the characters. Please?