Tag Archive for 'television'

that i can’t enjoy treme as much as i’d like

As you can probably guess, I’ve been watching Treme, as is every other blogger in New Orleans. There’s plenty of reactions out there, mostly positive but occasionally negative. So far I’m impressed. The attention to detail is phenomenal, the show feels right, and it’s gaining momentum as we start to delve deeper and deeper into understanding the main characters. I like this show a lot, and I want to throw myself into it. But I can’t. The hungry termite had a post in which she said that it’s “too soon” to see a show like this.

I’d say I have the opposite problem. For me, it’s too late. Continue reading ‘that i can’t enjoy treme as much as i’d like’

glee’s excessive auto-tune usage

Glee is back finally. And for that I’m tremendously glad. It feels like forever since the first half of the season ended with that kiss between Emma and Will. (For the record, I didn’t care for that kiss at all; it was too soon. But that’s beside the point here.) And though some reactions have been mixed to the newest episode, I thought it was a strong start to the second part of the season. Unfortunately, however, the Auto-Tune usage that was rampant in the first 13 episodes looks like it will continue for the rest of the season.

Now, I guess it makes sense that the show uses Auto-Tune at least occasionally. The show does (and to a large extent, should) reflect the sensibilities of modern pop music, however misguided those sensibilities may be. And some of the show’s singers are clearly stronger than others; I realize that there are tremendous difficulties in casting a show like this. But the extra layer of artificiality caused by the usage of Auto-Tune often distracts from the music and the story. Continue reading ‘glee’s excessive auto-tune usage’

inconsistent American Idol judges

I’ve been an American Idol fan for the last couple years, but some years I’m busier than others, and I don’t always pay a lot of attention to it. DVR helps, but between being busy and watching the Olympics, I’d put Idol on the back burner. I finally got back into watching it last week and I was less than impressed on a number of levels. The contestants weren’t great and neither were the judges. I think Ellen DeGeneres is hilarious, and I absolutely loved her 2009 commencement speech at Tulane.

But I’m not totally sold on Ellen as a judge. I love her jokes, but her comments on the contestant’s performance are often a little too nice. And what music background does she have, anyway? She’s a stellar comedienne, but that’s no qualification for this show. And Kara DioGuardi is still less than outstanding. She’s not bad, but she’s not great, either. The bottom line is that the two of them combined can’t replace Paula Abdul and her drug-addled ramblings. And once Simon leaves, I fear the show will be headed way downhill. I’m sure they’ll try to pick up some curmudgeonly Brit to replace him, but I doubt it’ll work. Continue reading ‘inconsistent American Idol judges’

that Hornets games are not on DirecTV

First of all, let me admit that I’m a casual, bandwagon Hornets fan. When I was a kid, my favorite team was the Orlando Magic (because of Shaq), and after he went from Orlando to Los Angeles most of my interest in the NBA faded. Sure, I’d watch a game here or there, but I mostly preferred the college game. So much of the NBA play was dominated by isolation plays for the stars, as opposed to the ball movement of the college game. The refs let stars get away with traveling and carrying. The 24-second play clock led to an uninteresting, back-and-forth style of play, and outlawing zones struck me as taking away a big part of the game. I remembered when I was little and we almost nabbed the Timberwolves; the Times-Picayune even ran a headline that said “Got ‘em!” above a Timberwolves jersey. This was pretty exciting, aside from the minor detail that we did not, in fact, get the Timberwolves.

When the Hornets came, I wasn’t all that excited at first. I’d watch the occasional game on TV, but didn’t pay too much attention. Then in 2003 I moved to a new house and got DirecTV, which didn’t have (and still doesn’t have) Cox Sports TV, so I couldn’t watch Hornets games aside from the occasional nationally televised game. But then the Hornets got Chris Paul and returned to New Orleans full-time after a Katrina-induced exile to Oklahoma City. And they started winning. I had to been to a Hornets game once before (2004, maybe?) when my dad got some tickets from a work colleague. But I didn’t go again until I decided to go in March 2008, when the red-hot Hornets were fighting for the #1 spot in the Western Conference. They were playing the Bulls and entered the 4th quarter down by nine, but came back to win by eleven. Chris Paul had 37 points and 13 assists. I didn’t start attending every home game or anything like that, but clearly the NBA and the Hornets had some appeal. Continue reading ‘that Hornets games are not on DirecTV’

nbc’s olympics coverage

I’m an Olympics junkie. Every two years, all I want to do is watch round-the-clock coverage of sports I wouldn’t otherwise care about, except that I’m sucked in by jingoism and sappy human interest stories. This year, NBC has apparently decided that it would like to do the crappiest job possible of televising the Olympics, and is making my life miserable.

The Olympics are in Vancouver, so that should be great for TV in the USA, right? No need to tape-delay stuff for ten or twelve hours until prime time. I’m cautiously optimistic that the live prime time coverage will be good, but it looks like NBC is going to suck horribly at everything else. I’ve been looking through the TV schedule and this is pretty much the way it works on the average day (all times Central):

NBC: mixture of sports/feature pieces from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. (weekdays) or 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. (weekends), the big-name sports from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., then recap/medal ceremonies/some sports coverage from 10:30-11 or 11-12.
MSNBC/CNBC/USA: USA curling & hockey matches, some other hockey matches. Continue reading ‘nbc’s olympics coverage’

jersey shore

Not too long ago a TV show premiered, and within a few hours my facebook news feed was filled with people expressing their love for this television sensation. What show? Jersey Shore, of course. So after a while I got around to checking it out, and I made it through about an hour and a half before I had to turn it off. Otherwise I’d probably have thrown something through my TV. It was deplorable on about a thousand different levels. Continue reading ‘jersey shore’

adam lambert’s loss

Democracy may be the best political system we have, but the notion of majority rule has often failed miserably when applied to various other subjects—for example, reality TV. With American Idol kicking off its new season this week, I’d like to look back at the travesty that was last year’s voting. How on earth did Adam Lambert lose? Continue reading ‘adam lambert’s loss’

last night’s Glee episode

[edit]–I keep getting google hits for “last night’s Glee episode” and I don’t want to confuse anyone. So know that this is about “Wheels,” which aired November 11, 2009, and not about any future episode that may be “last night’s Glee episode” at any particular point in time. But while you’re here, check out my post about Glee’s ridiculous amount of Auto-Tune usage.

Let me start right off by saying that I’m a huge fan of Glee. I start with a positive disposition to any sort of movie or TV musical, and I was hooked on Glee from the pilot, not only for the musical sequences but also for the outstanding ensemble of character actors and actresses, the cameos by Broadway superstars, and the bitingly sharp writing. The first few episodes of Glee have shown that it’s willing to mock Christians, cheerleaders, people with lisps, homosexuals, blacks, football players, mysophobes, and plenty of others. There were the occasional sensitive moments—Kurt coming out to his dad, Will learning from his wife that they’re going to have a baby, Ken’s longing for Emma despite the fact that she’s hopelessly in love with Will, etc. But last night’s episode (“Wheels” is the episode title) went way off the deep end of maudlin sentimentalism with a veritable miscellany of topics fit for an after-school special or a very special episode. Warning—Spoilers after the jump!