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top fives in TV of 2010

January 4, 2011

Continuing with my chorus of complaints, let’s move on to TV. More specifically, new TV in 2010, not shows that aired before and continued in 2010. I should preface these lists by mentioning that I watch a lot of TV, both good and bad, because I play it on my computer in the background while I draw, and I’m a cartoonist, so I do a lot of drawing. So, I’m inclined to wholeheartedly support shows that aren’t necessarily good, but are the perfect sort of mindless entertainment one appreciates when they don’t have to pay close attention. (I’ve ranted about this before) For example, I absolutely love Bones and Monk. See what I’m trying to say? Okay, here we go:

Top 5 New TV shows: (note: I missed a lot of shows everyone was talking about this year like Treme and Boardwalk Empire because…uh…well I just did, okay? I’m BUSY. Those fart jokes don’t write themselves.)

1. Louie: I love Louis CK. Admittedly, he can do some wrong, but when he’s right, he’s better than most the sitcoms out there. And he’s right most of the time.

2. Conan: I adore Conan O’Brien and I definitely joined the rustle feathered outcry when NBC fucked him over. It wasn’t necessarily the network or the show (although I love it) that I found distressing, but the painfully public crushing of Conan’s lifelong dream to host the Tonight Show. It was like watching your best friend’s parents get divorced right after his grandma died and his girlfriend dumped him and you’re like “nooooo!! I will avenge you, tiny captain!” and then you go on Facebook, click “like” on “I’m with CoCo” and call it a day.

3. Raising Hope. Martha Plimpton pretty much carries this entire show, but that isn’t to say the rest of the actors don’t hold their own. I didn’t have much interest in this show when it first came out it keeps proving me wrong and making me laugh. Granted I don’t really think about it when I’m not watching it, but while it’s on, it’s an enjoyable 22 minutes

4. Sons of Tuscon: No one really paid any attention to this lil’ show, and it was subsequently canceled after one season. The premise- a chubby slacker takes on pseudo-guardianship of 3 young boys whose dad is in prison so they don’t have to go to foster homes- isn’t an overplayed plot but also somehow doesn’t seem too original either. But what won it over for me was the neurotic, overbearing oldest boy and the adorable idiot little brother. I guess it’s sort of a bummer it won’t be returning. But also a bummer in the way that when you get an under-toasted bagel, you’re mildly irked for exactly the 5 minutes it takes you to eat it and then you forget all about it. There just really isn’t a whole lot to put on this list this year.

5. Party Down: Okay so party down came out in 2009, but it merits mentioning because it was canceled this year, which was a huge mistake on Starz behalf. Not like Startz is the pinnacle of quality TV (Crash was totally unwatchable) but Party Down was a fucking fantastic show even though no one was watching it. With a hilarious script/cast, it also had a veritable who’s who of comic celebrity walk ons without being pretentious. Booo, Starz. Stop spelling shit with a Z.

5 disappointing new shows: (there were so many bad ones, I’m just going to discuss ones I either had hope for, or was at least interested in seeing where they’d go with it. Please note that those are two different things.)

1. Running Wilde: Watching, and then ceasing to watch, this show is like the fairly cute couple in your old group of college friends who no one ever talked shit about, but only because they were “nice” but sometimes you wanted to talk shit about them because they were so boring and boring people are annoying but then you just forgot about them for the next 10 years until one night they popped up on facebook and they were married with a nice, boring kid and you were like “huh, I totally forgot they even existed” and then you also forgot to friend them because you’d already moved on to looking to see which of your old friends got fat.

2. Shit my Dad Says: Some things should exist solely on the internet and never be adapted to any other medium. Existing for the internet is not a bad thing, in fact, it can be delightful in the right context. Twitter was the perfect platform for Shit My Dad Says, and was flawlessly executed there, much to the often unrecognized smarts of the son, Justin Halpern. Halpern’s dad is so funny via Twitter, however, by turning it into a TV show, they failed to understand what would be the fatal flaw: No one cared about the two main characters. As a twitter feed, no one really needed to know who Justin Halpern and his dad were, and no one cared on TV either (This is not a commentary on either of them in real life, in fact, I assume they’re both delightful, as the dad is hilarious and the son, per his book, is actually a good story teller)

3. The Walking Dead: Admittedly, I was into this at first. But then I kept watching, and kept understanding how very very unoriginal it was and how unlikeable all the characters were. Plus the dialogue, which started off fine, just fizzled down to perfunctory angry mumbles after the entire writing staff was fired mid-season. I kept watching it, but every time I was like “eh, when is Bones back on already?”

4. Mike and Molly: oooooh fat people doing normal, everyday people things! How novel! I find this entire premise to be so offensive and distasteful that I refuse to watch it. Also because it looks terrible, but I might as well grasp whatever moral straws I can because if anything is going to make me look like a good person, it’s the boycotting of a TV show no one watches.

5. Glee. Okay, so Glee isn’t new to this year, but I really needed to squeeze it onto the list so I can say this: GLEE IS NOT A GOOD SHOW. It’s trite and irritating and all the plot lines, when not tediously dubious, serve only to usher us quickly into yet another musical number where any of the following things are bound to happen: the Jewish girl has weepy eyes and quivering lips, the black girl is asserting her right to be curvy and fabulous, the wheelchair kid is boppin’ around letting you know it’s okay he can’t walk, he’s got other skills, the rebel kid is doin’ some smooth, sensitive moves, the gay kid is feeling ostracized but it’s strengthening his resolve, the Jock is showing us he’s more than just a jock by crooning and twikle toeing about and Mr. Scheuster is trying to fuck that girl that looks like a Kewpie doll. Haha man do I have a bone to pick with Glee or what? (I really don’t care that as this rant implies.)

Up next: top pictures on paper, doodles galore!

other lists: top five movies