Wednesday, December 31, 2008

More of the Greats of 2008

I hate that these are so short, but here are more dearly departed and truly gifted celebrities that are listed that I think definitely deserve a mention.

Beverlee McKinsey:
I really wish I could see more of Beverlee’s work. From what little I’ve seen, she did a great job on Another World as Iris, and she pretty much won me over as Alexandra Spaulding on Guiding Light after seeing her play the role. What a truly excellent actress. The soap world is definitely not the same without people like her.

Harvey Korman:
What a great guy. As much as I loved him on Mama’s Family and The Carol Burnett Show, I will never forget his game show appearances. One including Tattletales back in 1974. Gene Rayburn was hosting, and there was a question about sex and the other two couples got it wrong. Harvey however, when it came to be his turn, he got it right after talking about how terrible it was that the other couples got it wrong. Truly funny moment. He will be missed.

George Carlin:
I respect and enjoyed this man for his Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television and him pointing out the ridiculousness of banning things. For years I’ve thought that a lot of the censorship on TV today is just silly, especially on basic cable. And it’s amazing how we are compared to some other countries like Australia and Great Britain. It’s interesting how we’ve evolved slightly over time since the time it was released. Though obviously before this as I was way too young to hear such a routine, I had remembered his voice best on Shining Time Station. I was a regular viewer of that show. And I also barely remember his short-lived sitcom on Fox in 1993, The George Carlin Show.

Bernie Mac:
I admit that I was never a huge fan of Bernie Mac’s. But I have seen his sitcom before and I did like what I saw. I loved him with Ashton Kutcher in Guess Who?. And I do think he was a generally funny man. And what I really seemed good to me about him was what I heard Steve Harvey say about him on Ellen after his death: that he was a family man. No matter how much of a success he was, that his family always came first. It was definitely one of those celebrity deaths that are just pure shock when you hear about it. I didn’t know that he was sick and he was way too young.

Paul Newman:
It’s been a really long time since I’ve seen many of his movies, but still, all in all this man was nothing short of a legend and a treasure to Hollywood. And what I really respect him for is that after seeing his interview on MSNBC’s Time & Again, I loved how modest he was. Many of the actors I love are grateful to their fans and are proud of their work, but are not conceited. I think it’s lovely that one of America (and the world’s) best actors is someone who was not only great at what they did, but also a kind and charitable man.

Isaac Hayes:
I’m not a fan of how things ended with him and South Park, but I love his contribution to disco, with items like The Theme from Shaft. I LOVE disco, it has to be my favorite type of music… EVER. And the genre wouldn’t have been the same without his musical work.

Neal Hefti:
The Odd Couple is one of my favorite themes. I looked up Neal’s bio on the web, and I was amazed at what I found. He not only composed the theme to The Odd Couple, but he was also a big band leader and composer. I didn’t know he also worked with Frank Sinatra, and released numerous albums on his own, and composed the scores for several movies. The theme is practically synonymous with the show The Odd Couple along with the famous opening dialogue.

Eartha Kitt:
I wish I could see some of the old Batman shows. I haven’t in a really long time, and I wish I could see some more of her other movies. What a talented actress and singer, and I respect her for speaking out for gay rights.

Best Game Show Moments of 2008

It’s truly hard to have just one, so I’ve come up with four! My picks for best game show moments in the year 2008!

I’d definitely say my favorite moment this year game show wise was Betty White’s appearance on Million Dollar Password. I must be a real sentimental person, especially for ranking this as #1, not only because it was a pure treat to see her play on both episodes, but also because seeing the clip of Betty and Allen on the original Password just really tugged at the heartstrings!

Another great moment I’d say would be the million dollar win on Wheel of Fortune. As I’ve said before, I’m tired of the gimmicky things this show pulls, but there’s something about the million dollar wedge. Yes, the show should tone the glamour down, I’ll always think that. But with the million dollar wedge, I like how the contestant really has to work for it and earn it. And that’s exactly what Michelle did back in October! It was EARNED and her reaction was just priceless. It was all about the emotion.

A third one for me would be yet another million dollar win -- this time with contestant Cynthia on The Price is Right Million Dollar Spectacular back in April, when playing Clock Game. Again, just like Michelle’s win, it was about the emotion. Emotion that wasn’t forced out and unnecessarily overdrawn by ridiculous commercial tosses and “missions.” The emotion in that moment was raw and real, like how it should be on a game show.

Another memorable and great moment for me had to be seeing contestant Dorothy play on the daytime Price is Right again after 37 years. In 1972, she won the Grocery Game and made it to the showcase. It’s unfortunate that she didn’t do too well in 2008, but it was still a treat to see her.

Here’s hoping for more memorable and great moments in 2009!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

ATWT: Noah Said Knock You Out

Tuesday, December 30th:

Oh my God, Brian, you have so much gall. Your marriage to Lucinda stopped being none of Luke’s business a LONG time ago. And anyone with a brain knows that Lucinda wants some action.

Luke, I can’t believe you. Kissing Brian… are you effing kidding me? The only thing that sucks about Brian getting his lights punched out by Noah is that at the time he didn’t deserve it. But then I’m reminded of all the bullcrap he’s pulled so all in all I don’t feel bad about enjoying it. And sorry Luke, being “drunk” after two glasses of wine is no excuse at all either for macking on your step grandfather. There is no justification about it period. Like I said last time, Luke being jealous of Maddie and Noah’s friendship is just silly. Silly and ridiculous. Noah’s days of being in the closet are OVER and he’s not going to just run off and sleep with Maddie because Casey screwed her over. Noah is gay. Gay, gay, gay! Have I mentioned that Noah is gay? Get yourself together, Luke! How can you be THAT insecure after Noah has shown you time and time again, especially in the past two weeks alone that you’re the only guy in his life that you turn to kissing resident skees-bucket Brian Wheatley?! I can’t say I blame Noah either for being royally pissed off either after it‘s all set and done (by the way, great job, Jake!).

And come on, show. This better be the last cockblock. That act is just getting past tired. Let Luke and Noah do the horizontal limbo. I promise the sun will rise the next day.

Really not a fan of nuMaddie. She was never this whiny and pathetic. Why does history have to be thrown out of the window when it comes to writing this show? Why does plot have to come first before character, even if it means sacrificing the integrity of the character? Even if it means dropping a character's IQ so a story can work? And I’m glad Jade is being apologetic, though I‘m not liking her bratty attitude towards Lucinda. Funny how Jade is being written to a T, but Maddie isn't.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Best and Worst Game Shows of 2008

Time to look back at some of the best and the worst, game show style in 2008.

Million Dollar Password I’ve really wound up liking overtime. I realize that it takes me some time to get used to the changes from previous versions that we know and love; and even if I still think the set’s a bit too busy and I think that there are unnecessary sound effects, I’ve found it to be really enjoyable. It’s been too long since this show has made first-run episodes. As much as I’ve grown to hate the nighttime version, I really love daytime syndie Deal Or No Deal. Howie does a great job as usual as a host. The show still has its themed and sponsored weeks every once in a while, but the show doesn’t veer off course and become a melodramatic zoo. The show during the day is about the contestant and the game; the way it should be. I think Trivial Pursuit: America Plays is definitely one of the better shows to debut this year. I really like the America Plays aspect and the questions are a lot of fun. If only the show would get better ratings. I certainly think it could have a better host, but I do like Catch 21.

The Moment of Truth had to be the absolute worst. It’s like a more nasty, vilified game show version of Maury. The questions do nothing but embarrass the contestants and their families. There’s no enjoyment factor in that. Amnesia was no big treat either but at least that was a show that tried to have fun with the contestants and their lives. Moment of Truth just makes me wish Mark L. Walberg was hosting something better. How Much Is Enough was a big disappointment. It was the same thing all show. I also think one of the least desirable shows to debut this year was Celebrity Family Feud. I don’t think it’s as terrible as some people do (but then again, I missed episode one) but it could have been much better. I was really not impressed by Al Roker’s hosting, and again I ask, what’s the point of bringing back retro music if it’s just going to be used terribly? In the end I wanted to see it only for Margaret Cho and Ed McMahon. And Hole In The Wall... that's just better left as a segment on Ellen.

Yearly Review: GSN

Well, we’ve gone through a pretty big year for GSN. Whether it came to new originals like Catch 21 and Bingo America, classic acquisitions like Tic Tac Dough, or the logo change… there was a lot in store for game show fans.

This network has had some real positives this year, or at least I thought so. As much as I dislike the amount of skipped episodes it can cause, I do like GSN Live. There have been some great guests as result of this show… Geoff Edwards, Bob Eubanks, Tom Kennedy, Bill Rafferty; it’s really helped the network go back to its old roots. There’s also been some good acquisitions. I love that Meredith’s version of Millionaire is on the schedule. I have my issues with Donny’s version of Pyramid, but I am glad to see it. I was so happy to see Russian Roulette come back to the line-up, as well as seeing To Tell The Truth with Bud Collyer and Wheel of Fortune returning. It's nice seeing Wheel before it became gimmick city. The special marathons were a real treat as well. The Play it Back marathons featured now rarely aired classics like The $25,000 Pyramid and The Dating Game. The Christmas marathons were really nice. I loved seeing Combs Feud get a marathon of its own. And I can’t wait for the $100,000 Pyramid New Year’s Eve marathon. The logo change I think was for the best as well. The new logo looks more game-like, and the slogan as well. Another sign of the network going back to its roots.

With the positives there have been some negatives. Removing Body Language and Double Dare from the weekend overnights being one thing. That awful summer campaign “Catch a Game.” It really wouldn’t have been so bad if they had more going for it than the same three promos played over and over during every commercial break. Some of the original stuff really wasn’t much to write home about. How Much Is Enough I found to be a huge disappointment. And Think Like A Cat? For that I have seven words: What. In. The. Hell. Was. That. Crap. Cancelling Lingo I don’t think was such a good idea either. And Alfonso Ribiero… I’m sorry, I’m sure you’re a nice guy, but I’m really not a fan of your hosting. PLEASE tone it down and use your indoor voice! It’s like watching Todd Newton on Whammy!.

Here’s hoping that 2009 is a great year for GSN, for game show lovers of all kinds!

Remembering the Greats of 2008: James E. Reilly

In all honesty, there are instances where I just don’t know how to feel about this man.

After seeing some of the episodes of Days of our Lives with the Marlena possession storyline, I have to admit I enjoyed them, but more for the camp factor. It was hard to take seriously, but it had its interesting moments. However, from what I’ve seen of it, outside of the theme arrangement, 2004’s Melaswen storyline looked just awful, and I don’t feel bad that I missed out on much of it.

And I’m a bit mixed with Passions as well. In 1999, I was furious to find out that Sunset Beach was cancelled, and in its place at 1 PM in Indianapolis was this show, but I found myself getting hooked. But the big problems I had with this show is that the payoff factor wasn’t very high. I distinctly remember more than once that whenever Theresa would think that her ultimate fear had come true and that the man of her dreams, Ethan was leaving her, there were just way too many instances where it or a storyline like that with a big reveal was all a dream, and it would become seriously annoying. And I also remember being a seriously disgruntled Sheridan and Luis fan. The storylines would drag out WAY too long and the dialogue could get really repetitive, and more than so than your traditional soap.

But I did love all the “accidents” that helped Ethan and Theresa eventually come together in the beginning, and although it would have been nice to see Sheridan and Luis be married at least ONE time, I admit I enjoyed it so much when a furious Ivy crashed into the church the first time it was supposed to happen. I enjoyed Tabitha Lenox’s relationship with her doll Timmy (RIP, Josh Ryan Evans). But regardless, of the fun times, in the end I’m not upset that I wound up eventually giving up on this show. The payoff and writing just weren’t that great for me to continue all the way through.

For fans of his work, he’ll be remembered as a legend. For people who were not, he’ll always be remembered for one (or two) of the biggest disliked storylines on Days of our Lives, and Passions, the show that many people hated to see replace Another World (or in some areas, Sunset Beach).

Remembering the Greats of 2008: Estelle Getty

Since Estelle Getty’s passing, I have been re-watching a lot of the show over the past several months. The Golden Girls is one of my favorite shows of all time, and even though it is rerun a lot, it’s one of those shows that do love to watch, but I can’t watch it every time it’s on, in fear that I’ll grow sick of it. For me it’s best to watch some favorites bunches at a time. And considering the circumstances, I have to admit that it was sad seeing a couple of episodes, for instance “The Heart Attack” from season one, where the girls fear that Sophia is dying.

I think for a lot of people as well as myself, one of the biggest reasons why the Sophia character was so much fun to enjoy was, well for one instance, whenever I watch, I feel as though the characters are almost distant relatives of mine, in some odd way. Sophia to many people was like a grandmother, and not only that, but her character and the other characters on The Golden Girls proved that life does not stop at a certain age. You can date, work at a fast food restaurant or as an activities director at a retirement home that you once despised, and even meet someone like Burt Reynolds. Not only was she fun to be around, but Sophia was someone you could get great advice and hear great stories from. While fiery and feisty, she was also warm and caring. And the greatness of the character besides the writing I think had a lot to do with Estelle. She was a very gifted actress, and I just can’t imagine anyone else playing Sophia Petrillo as sharply and as lively as she did.

Picture it: September 1985. A new sitcom called The Golden Girls debuted Saturday on NBC, with four women, three widowed, one divorced. Their chemistry together along with love, laughter, fights, and cheesecake embraced audiences and America (and the world) hasn’t been the same since.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

GSN: January Schedule Changes

Beginning the week of January 5th. Changes listed only:

9:30 am Card Sharks (CBS 1986-89; replaces Tic Tac Dough)
12:00 am Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? (ABC 1999-2002; replaces Millionaire, Syndie (2002- Present))
1:00 am Wheel of Fortune (syndie 1994-95 season, replaces That’s The Question)
1:30 am Jeopardy! (syndie 2004-05 season, replaces Camouflage)
2:00 am Family Feud (syndie 2006-present version with O’Hurley, replaces Beat the Clock (CBS 1979-80))
2:30 am Match Game (CBS 1973-79, replaces Now You See It (CBS 1974-75))

10:00 am Blockbusters (NBC 1987, replaces the 1980-82 version)

I’m not really that disappointed about Tic Tac Dough leaving because at least they ran through all the episodes they leased. And I do think Card Sharks with Bob Eubanks does deserve a spot on the weekday schedule, but I’m not liking it too much that they’re starting over with episode 1. That will make it the third time already that they’re in some form rewinding the show back to the beginning after not getting at least half-way through with another cycle of the show.
As much as I prefer Cullen’s Blockbusters over the Bill Rafferty version, Cullen’s version has aired a lot over the past few years and I think it deserves a bit of a break from the schedule. The Rafferty era hasn’t been seen in a while and a weekend timeslot is perfect for it considering the amount of episodes it had.

However, I am disappointed about Beat the Clock and Now You See It leaving. All I wanted to see were 4 more episodes of Beat the Clock from the finale week, and Now You See It would have gotten up to the series finale next month anyway. Couldn’t they have just waited until all the available episodes were shown at least once before pulling both shows, or at least move Now You See It to 2 am?

And what’s replacing these shows at night I find to be pretty disappointing. I was never a big fan of That’s The Question or Camouflage, and I love seeing Wheel of Fortune, but with it and Jeopardy!, seriously, I thought we were through with this repeating of the same episodes of shows a day. I realize that people can’t see/record these shows on GSN during the day, but I like the idea of having a bit of a bigger variety of shows. And the Match Game replacement for Now You See It I also find to be kind of a letdown since it’ll be late ‘74-’75 episodes again. This would have been a great time to get out something like PM or the 1990 version, which we haven’t seen in a while. And I could do without an extra Feud airing.

ATWT: More of the Newbs

Tuesday, December 23rd:

Today is a perfect showcase as to why I am not a fan of Jade (and not really feeling the new actress either). Give me a break, girl! Luke took Jade to the police in fear of what could happen to her if she were a fugitive; where she could easily be hurt or killed. Sorry, but if someone’s freedom and possibly their life is at risk, I’m hauling them to the cops. Also this is has to be the fourth or fifth time this year where some crazy convict or pissed off person is about to kill someone or himself with someone sane enough to talk them or force the weapon away from them. This show just milks that to no end.

With Maddie, it looks like another case of the character coming back to town, only to change with no real explanation whatsoever. I’m still trying to warm up to the actress, but writing wise, this is just not the Maddie that we’ve known before… and geez, horny much? And Maddie, you didn’t turn Noah gay. It’s called denial.

I’m sorry, but Luke being jealous of Maddie and Noah is just silly. For one thing, has this show forgotten that Luke and Maddie were once each other’s BFF? And secondly, Noah is GAY. Gay and OUT. The days of him denying his sexuality have long since ended. I reiterate: NOAH IS GAY. He’s not going to just up and hook up with her. Come on, writers. Stop trying to force drama where it doesn’t or shouldn’t exist. And the real potential awkwardness with Noah formerly dating Casey’s ex-girlfriend Maddie is apparently swept under the rug.

ATWT: Mistletoe-gate: One Year Later

Monday, December 23rd:

You know, I have to say that for the past year, I have never thought about mistletoe the same way again after last year’s Christmas pan-up at the end of the show. I couldn’t even watch the December 20, 2007 episode afterwards because despite all the scenes with Luke and Noah talking about how much they loved each other, I just couldn’t get past the rage of how they so quickly decided to pan up to the mistletoe as soon as their lips were about to meet. I just couldn’t do it, for fear of the urge to throw something at my TV in a fit of anger. Yet again.

I still have my annoyances with the writers; for one thing, how the hell can you have Maddie ask if Noah is gay after all that happened last year? And Luke being jealous of Maddie? Seriously? But today is a celebration for me. The gift that Noah gave to Luke was so sweet and the thought behind it was so, so precious. And, YES! The “same here” from last year, when all still was well, followed by mistletoe with a KISS, a REAL kiss that we could actually SEE and enjoy!

It’s nice that Maddie and Noah are still friends after all that’s happened. And Luke, if a guy kissed me the way Noah kissed Luke towards the end of the show (and oh boy, WHAT a kiss that was too!), there’s no way in Hades that I’d be questioning his sexuality!

And gotta Love Brian with his reasons for holding up sex. Sorry, Lucinda, but you aren’t getting any tonight.

In the end, I’m still disturbed by Brucinda affection and the writing can still be frustrating at times, but after all that’s been pointed out, the last thing I can say is bite me, homophobes!

ATWT: The Talk

Tuesday, December 16th:

Sorry, Brian, but I still have no sympathy for you. None. I really don’t like how when he brings up about how people try to help Luke during his downward spiral, that he includes himself, yet all the while trying to convince himself that he never came onto Luke -- twice. I’m sorry, but Brian’s no hero. And later on it was about time that he admits that he kissed him. It’s like despite all this, the creepy smarminess factor is still there. Although as much as I can’t stand him, I have to agree that Luke is pretty attractive.

And it’s so true about what Luke says when it comes to being in denial about being gay. It’s one thing to lie about yourself and in the process hurt only yourself, but it goes into an entirely different direction when you involve someone else, especially if you date or marry someone.

Brian and Lucinda are not having sex. Oh, GASP! What a shocker. Let me tell you. And please, writers, no more Nuke sex (or lack thereof) mentions in front of Brian? Please? Pretty please? Okay, thanks. Bye.

Thursday, December 18th:

I really don’t like it when the writers do this. Lily was basically saying that Jade made her mistakes but she always felt bad about it and didn’t want to intentionally harm them. That’s so not the case. For instance, when she slept with Will two years ago, when it all came out, it was basically more that she was sorry she got caught, and not just sorry about what happened.

And oh boy, how the tables have turned. There are people that insist that Noah “snitched” or ratted Luke out after the whole cheating situation with the election, and it just wasn’t that way at all. I think after all the lying about being gay and seeing Maddie, and the whole Ameera fiasco taught him that lying is just not the way out of things. But it was so obvious, at least to me, that Noah was just trying to do the right thing when it came to coming clean, and if he lied about it too, then they would have both been kicked out of school. Luke sort of to me had the same logic on this episode; that lying and covering up things, and not doing the right thing the wrong way wasn’t the way to go. He does this with Jade by going to the police with her instead of giving her money to skip town, and she winds up getting arrested. Both were doing the right thing for the person involved, but it just ended horribly.

And thumbs down to the writers for one other thing: how the hell do you have a scene with Luke catching up with Jade and there’s NO Noah mentions at ALL? Writers, are you kidding me?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas Episodes: Game Show Style

I’ve really had a good time this past week watching Christmas shows of game shows either on GSN’s 12 Days of Christmas this year, or watching some favorite Christmas episodes that I’ve recorded over the past few years.

As much as I agree with anyone that earlier episodes of Wheel of Fortune featured more charm and that it’s a better show without multiple gimmicks and fluff, I do admit that it’s nice looking forward to the Christmas shows ever year. I saw one from December 25, 2006 again and I did find it pretty enjoyable. It seems as though on this episode in particular, the show is more focused on the holiday theme than the extra things, which made it more fun to watch.

I think the Passwords did a really good job at getting into the holiday spirit. I love decorated game show sets, and Password Plus in 1979 did a really good job with theirs, and the Christmas puzzles in the game really help the mood as well. Super Password I enjoy just as much, and knowing that Bert was a singer, it really makes me wish that there was another instance where he sings a Christmas carol or two, like he did (albeit briefly) with “Mele Kalikimaka” in 1984.

Super Password’s 1984 holiday episode brings me to another show, the Pyramid Christmas show from 2003. I have my issues with Donnymid, but I always thought this was a high point in this version of the series. I find it really easy to get cozy and comfortable with the Christmas categories, with EVERY category both in the main games and the winner’s circle being holiday related. It’s one instance I think where the style of writing kind of came in handy. It also makes me wish we could see more of the possible Christmas shows from the Clark eras, including one from $25,000 Pyramid in 1986 -- hint, hint, GSN.

Seeing the holiday episodes of To Tell The Truth from 1990 were a real treat, and seeing them as well as a couple from the Collyer era also make me wish that television syndication was run differently back then, so we could have seen the same style of holiday charm on the 1969-78 version, which I thought were the truly the show’s best years. And as for another panel show, I’ve Got A Secret could really produce some great Christmas cheer.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

GSN: New Year’s Marathons

I’m pretty excited about this! On December 31st, GSN will be bringing in the New Year with their regular tradition, a marathon of The $100,000 Pyramid.

9:00 am - #26: Florence Henderson and Ed Begley, Jr.
9:30 am - #171: Ken Kercheval and Rita Moreno
10:00 am - #145: David Graf and Mary Cadorette
10:30 am - #65: Nipsey Russell and Teresa Ganzel
11:00 am - #432: Soupy Sales and Shelley Smith
11:30 am - #68: Howard Morton and Didi Conn
12:00 pm - #457: Audrey Landers and Nathan Cook
12:30 pm - #87: Vicki Lawrence and Dick Cavett
1:00 pm - #378: Betty White and David Graf
1:30 pm - #414: Brian Mitchell and Markie Post
2:00 pm - #121: Annie Bloom and Jamie Farr
2:30 pm - #186: Terry Lester and Florence Henderson
3:00 pm - #56: LeVar Burton and Markie Post
3:30 pm - #469: David Graf and Patty Duke
4:00 pm - #5: Brian Mitchell and Vicki Lawrence
4:30 pm - #389: Smokey Robinson and Gladys Knight
5:00 pm - #11: Betty White and Nathan Cook
5:30 pm - #99: Brian Mitchell and Markie Post

I think the truly best part of this marathon is that we will be seeing episodes that have not been shown in a good while! I have waited so long to see more of seasons 1 and 3. The first season of $100,000 Pyramid has not been seen on GSN in years, and what’s more, we’ll be seeing an episode from the premiere week! Pyramid is my favorite game show of all time, and the fact that practically all the episodes in this marathon are going to be relatively fresh (well at least for me), makes it all the more special. I'm really glad someone seemed to care enough to shake things up with this marathon!

January 1st will feature another marathon of Let’s Make A Deal (syndie 1971-77) from 9 am - 3 pm like in 2008. However, this marathon will not be strictly Las Vegas Hilton episodes. We should see at least a couple real goodies in it. The episode that airs first is the first episode! And the noon show features an appearance by Milton Berle!

Looks like a great way to start the new year and I personally can‘t wait.

Million Dollar Password: Season 2 Celeb List

Get ready for season two of Million Dollar Password, which starts December 18th on CBS!
The celebrity guest list is as follows:

Thursday, December 18th: William Shatner, Aisha Tyler
Sunday, December 21st: Phil Keoghan, Julie Chen
Sunday, December 28th: Betty White, Adam Corolla
Sunday, January 4th: Craig Ferguson, Serena Williams
Sunday, January 11th: Norm MacDonald, Jamie Kennedy
Sunday, January 18th: Neil Patrick Harris, Rachael Ray (season one repeat)
Sunday, January 25th: Chelsea Handler, Jeff Garlin
Sunday, February 1st: William Shatner, Aisha Tyler (repeat)

Granted, I’m still getting used to the new format and everything and I still have my issues with it (for instance I still think the set is too busy), but I’m still looking forward to the new season, and the celebrities sound really interesting. William Shatner and Craig Ferguson sound like crazy guests and for William’s sake we should be grateful there are no chairs! I kid, I kid. And it’ll be great to have legend Betty White back for another episode. I am excited for more new Password!

ATWT: The Tables Have Turned

Thursday, December 10th:

Well this time the tables have turned, and Brian is the one that’s the drinker. Nice to see that Luke isn’t the one who’s drinking this time.

I honestly don’t blame Noah one bit for walking out on Luke at the bachelor party. That remark about Noah being in the closet was extremely uncalled for, and really not a good way to get him to see Luke’s side of this whole situation with Brian. Still seeing too little of Noah in this though. Lack of Noah equals an unhappy Brandon.

Brian… ugh, what a douche. Oh, “I had a bit too much scotch tonight.” How convenient. Thank God Lily and Holden walked in. Normally I hate the idea of Luke being interrupted before a possible kiss, but this is Luke-blocking I can get behind. I was glad to see Luke tell Brian off at the end, but honestly if I were him I would have told Lucinda by now. I’d love to see Brian try to deny his way out of it this time.

I really can’t wait for this to unravel. I’m just so sick of Brian Wheatley.

ATWT: Hey-La, Hey-La, My Ex-Wife’s Back

Monday, December 7th:

You know, I think Brian would be more justified in his little tirade if he hadn’t kissed Luke. And during the whole situation, not once does Brian seem to remember coming onto Luke. Not once. If he kept his hands (and lips) away from Luke, and Luke decided to call his ex-wife on just merely his own vague suspicions and general dislike for the man, then I’d be more likely to take his side. Deny all you want, Brian, but you’re as gay as the day is long. Maybe Luke dug a little too deep in trying to find out by calling Brian’s ex-wife. But I’d be just as weary to find out more about him if he pulled the same schtick with me.

Normally I love it when couples act schmoopy and lovingly in soaps. Couples that actually work together, that is. But knowing all the stuff about Brian makes his affectionate scenes with Brian just cringe-worthy.

And again, Still hating the little amount of Noah featured. Can we please see more of Noah’s side of this break-up?!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

ATWT: Full House

Monday, December 1st:

Luke, you’re now experiencing stomach pains. Will the light bulb go off in your head now and will you finally quit drinking? As a fan of the soap genre, I realize that break-ups with couples are going to happen, but now it’s just gotten to the point where it’s obvious that they’re keeping them apart so he can drink.

While it’s obvious to the viewer what happened with Brian and Luke, but I can see why someone like Noah doesn’t understand right now what’s going on. And the mere thought of someone’s step-grandfather macking his step-grandson is hard to comprehend, to say the least. And now Brian’s moved in and they all are gonna be one happy family? Yeah, I don’t think so.
Oh, Holden, Lily, and Lucinda, and Noah, how little you know.

Wednesday, December 3rd:

Another day, another instance of being totally creeped out by Brian. Gotta love Brian’s face when Luke says to Alison that “she doesn’t know the half of it.” Just like he had something to hide, which he does. Brian, you are no hero. And the Brian/Luke kiss flashbacks are just creepy! Enough of those; it’s like when Holden and Carly kept reminiscing about their affair.

There’s something about this story that seriously irritates me. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy the amount of time Luke has been getting lately; Van’s been getting really meaty material and I’m happier than ever that Casey is back in the Luke and Noah story, along with Alison; those two need to associate with young people. But I could not have been more annoyed when Luke was experiencing near fainting spells and Noah was not even notified. Where is he in this story? I can understand that there are going to be a few instances where Noah’s not going to be on, but seriously, why is Noah seen so seldom in this lately? They don’t even bother to mention where Noah is staying during this break-up and we barely get to see his perspective on it (not to mention, his logic about Kevin no longer works since he is MIA; that’s minus one point, writers). I realize that Luke and Brian are going to be saying more to each other, but still in the end, it’s like Noah’s making the occasional guest shot and it shows another sign that he‘s really not developed enough on this show.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving Episodes

I can’t believe it’s that time of the year again.

I’ve never been into sports that much, so I usually watch other things on Thanksgiving if I’m not with the rest of my family. There are Thanksgiving episodes of shows that I love so much that it’s become a real tradition to watch at least once every year.

For starters, it’s been a yearly tradition for I don’t know how long to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. That never, ever gets old for me.

Then there’s the episode of WKRP in Cincinnati, “Turkeys Away” where “The Big Guy” Carlson and Herb Tarlek learn the hard (and hilarious) way that turkeys don’t know how to fly. That episode is a true classic.

My true absolute favorites though are the Friends Thanksgiving episodes. I pretty much enjoy all of them to a degree. But season 6’s episode is the one I enjoy the most, “The One Where Ross Got High,” because of the secrets everyone were keeping from each other and about how in 60 seconds everything was revealed. Other favorites of mine include “The One Where Underdog Gets Away” from season 1, "The One With Chandler In A Box" from season 4, and I remember being so disappointed in most of season 9, but the Thanksgiving episode “The One With Rachel’s Other Sister” turned out really good in my opinion.

Will & Grace has made some really good ones too, I think. Even when I felt the show was no longer in its prime, season 7 did have an enjoyable Thanksgiving show, “Queens for a Day.” Although my favorites include season 2’s “Homo for the Holidays” where Jack comes out to his mother, and season 4’s “Moveable Feast.”

With some of these episodes and the Newhart marathon on WGN, there will be plenty to enjoy while dinner’s being made! I hope everyone’s Thanksgiving will be truly great!

ATWT: A Very Surly Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 25th:

I seriously cannot believe that Brian is the only one that really noticed how sloshed Luke was. I mean, I know the Snyders had other things going on, but seriously, it’s not like Luke did a really good job of keeping it hidden. How could no one notice the few missing beer bottles? And Lucinda, I love you, but you mean to tell me that you kissed Luke hello and didn’t smell the beer on his breath? And is Luke ever that bitchy? And speaking of bitchy, I did like the jabs at Brian, considering what a complete douche he is. And if I hear him say that he helped Luke sober up that night one more time, I think I will scream.

Kudos to Holden for inviting Noah to Thanksgiving dinner. And the hand-holding during grace was really a combination of touching and awkward. Luke and Noah really seemed to get into it, and I’m sure for Luke that it was uncomfortable for him to be holding hands with Brian. Also, when Noah was leaving, you could tell that the love was still in the air. Damn Brian for walking out. Slimeball. Sorry, I just don’t like him…

Friday, November 21, 2008

GSN: 12 Games of Christmas

Looks like GSN is spreading holiday cheer by getting some great oldies out of the vault! All through December, 12 different classics will air on 12 different days, from 1 to 3 PM eastern during the GSN Live block!

The schedule is like this:

December 8th: Card Sharks (CBS 1986-89; Christmas shows from 1986)
December 9th: Beat the Clock (CBS 1979-80; Christmas shows from 1979)
December 10th: Family Feud (CBS 1988-94; DAYTIME Christmas shows from 1991)
December 11th: Super Password (NBC 1984-89; Christmas shows from 1984)
December 12th: To Tell The Truth (NBC 1990-91; Christmas shows from 1990)
December 15th: Press Your Luck (CBS 1983-86; Christmas shows from 1984)
December 16th: Match Game (CBS 1973-79; Christmas shows from 1973, 1976, and 1977)
December 17th: Card Sharks (NBC 1978-81; Christmas shows from 1978)
December 18th: Family Feud (ABC 1976-85; Christmas shows from 1978)
December 19th: Body Language (CBS 1984-86; Christmas shows from 1984)
December 22nd: Password Plus (NBC 1979-82; Christmas shows from 1979)
December 23rd: Wheel of Fortune (Syndie 1983-Present; Christmas shows from 1994)

This is all so awesome, really looking forward to this. I really like that we’ll be seeing a different show each day. And it’s been quite a while since shows like classic To Tell The Truth, Body Language, and one of the 1980’s versions of Card Sharks have been on in the daytime. And daytime Combs Feud! This has not been seen on GSN at all lately. I know there are people like me who hate that GSN always seemed to skip some of these episodes, like the ones of Truth, and not even air them during the holidays; so it’s great to finally get to see them. And for oldie fans, I think this is a great way to make up for the pretty lackluster Thanksgiving stunts.

ATWT: A Kiss Is Just A Kiss… Um, Yeah... No

Thursday, November 20th:

Wow. Luke actually has a bedroom… with a decent sized bed. Maybe it could be used for something when this break-up is over?

Brian… what a complete tool. That line “You were in bad shape and I took care of you” and hearing that he came from a “touchy feely family”? Ew. That actually made me shudder. I am so grateful I am not related to that man. And if that kiss what no big deal, then why does he want Luke to not say anything? Then he tries to pass it off as some kind of joke. I don’t know about anyone else, but the straight guys I know don’t kiss each other like that as a joke. And according to him, we’re supposed to take him professing his love for Lucinda seriously? Is he freaking kidding? Watching him be romantic with Lucinda makes me cringe.

And, oh, Lily, how little you know about this. I’m sure you’d feel differently if your mom’s new husband kissed your son, while he was drunk.

This was a pretty good three days. I still have some issues (i.e. Noah not being used enough, where is Noah staying during all of this), but I still feel really entertained by the storyline and this three day week with the characters actually felt like three days and not just mere snippets spread out over the course of three days.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

WGN: Thanksgiving Newhart Marathon

Yay! We’ll be seeing a 26 episode marathon of Newhart on Thanksgiving Day on WGN America, starting at 2 pm!

I was wondering when we’d see a marathon of this show on WGN. I’ve been watching Newhart every week on WGN America and it’s been so great to see that the show is rewatchable after all these years, as with some shows I watched as a kid (i.e. Full House), I just can’t enjoy them as an adult. I missed about 99% of the Nick @ Nite and TNN airings, and over the years I only had about three episodes to enjoy until now, two which came from an old MTM VHS release, and the finale recorded from a TVLand marathon special.

In seeing the series again, I notice how much the show seemed to take off over time. Season one I think has it’s good episodes and moments, but I don’t think the show was anywhere near its stride yet. I think it started to get better with the permanent addition of Julia Duffy as Stephanie in season two, and even better with the addition of Peter Scolari and more appearances by Larry, Darryl, and Darryl. To this day, “Lady and the Tramps” is one of my all time favorite episodes of the series. After enjoying the show so much lately -- finding out that there will be a really decent sized marathon of this show really got me excited.

ATWT: Drunken Stupor

Tuesday, November 18th:

As much as I can’t stand Brian, he was totally right about how Luke really needed to clean up his act. Especially right now. Lucinda needs him, now more than ever.

I really didn’t care too much for Noah’s actions towards Luke today. I thought it was really sweet of him to get flowers for Lucinda. In fact, I didn’t expect him to be on this episode at all, but I really didn’t get him when he saw Luke. How can he not expect Luke to show up at the hospital at some point? This is his grandmother in the hospital, for crying out loud.

And wow. You do NOT mess with drunk!Luke. At all. I totally did not see that punch to Casey coming, nor the insult to Alison’s porn past.

Wednesday, November 19th:

Well, more signs that Luke fights dirty, especially when wasted. Bringing up the Colonel again and comparing him to Noah? Low blow, Luke. Especially since Luke’s said before that Noah is NOT his father. I liked Noah much better than yesterday. I’m surprised he didn’t leave after the insults. Yesterday Noah just seemed to give him the cold shoulder, especially at the hospital. Today isn’t the case; it was probably due to the fact that Luke was about to hurt others. But I love how Noah has changed for the better. He seems to be much more proud of himself, and so stable and under control.

I’m sorry, but Brian is a complete prick. If I hadn’t hated him in the past, I’d surely be hating him after today. How can you not only just marry, but marry someone who has freaking CANCER and just recovered from surgery and then hours later kiss said cancer patient’s grandson? Not to mention Luke was drunk. Way to take advantage of a situation, Brian. I am not surprised that this dude is obviously gay, and I’m not surprised in the least.

I love this so much. It’s about time that Luke and Noah get a real meaty storyline and what’s more, with character interaction! Lucinda, Lily, Holden, are all there! I loved the acting too. Van plays drunk and bitchy extremely well, and Elizabeth Hubbard as usual does such a tremendous job as Lucinda.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

ATWT: Snydergate

Wednesday, November 12th:

I really don’t see how Luke could be shocked at this. From the very start, he knew that Noah did not like the idea of rigging the election. And to be honest, I’m glad Noah didn’t try to lie anyway. From the looks of how much it hurt to tell the truth, he’d probably would have sucked at it anyway and would have gotten caught quickly. And it wasn’t just lying for Luke about this whole mess. This election in the process took Luke down a self-destructive path and is making him an entirely different person and Noah obviously didn’t want to contribute more to it by lying to the Dean. And I disagree with what Casey said to Noah.

I have little sympathy for Luke with this. Yes, it sucks that he got kicked out of school, but if it’s anyone’s fault for this whole mess, it’s his. He could have stopped Joe and Casey from getting phony ballots in his favor. And speaking of Joe, what happened to him? Did he just get off scot-free? He knew from the start about how Noah felt about everything; he really can’t be surprised if in the end if he lost his boyfriend’s respect.

As much as I’ve really never liked Brian, I do commend him for getting Lucinda and Lily to talk again. Lily forgave Carly before her own mother. I never understood that. While Lucinda did what she did with Dusty, she did it out of love. Carly wasn’t thinking of anyone but herself when she cheated with Holden.

Thursday, November 13th:

Nice to see Holden and Lily get involved in this, even though it‘s funny that Holden is talking about how wrong cheating is now. It just goes to show you that Holden can be a really great father, but a terrible husband. I agree with Noah, again. Even though Luke had his reasons for doing it, stealing this election has made Luke into a brand-new person, an undesirable one. In the end the Gay Film Festival and winning for all the little guys didn’t matter as much as beating Kevin did. And Luke, you kicked yourself out of school. Stop blaming other people. Seriously.

The only real question I have is that where is Noah going to go? Noah barely has any ties to anyone outside of the Snyder family. I was a bit surprised to see that Noah turned him down at Java.

While I’m obviously disappointed in Luke for rigging the election and it‘s certainly something seeing him spiral downward (and drinking again!), I must say this is fun to watch. Finally this feels like a real soap storyline and not some episodic vignette/skit type of thing that resolves itself within the hour, and it‘s really worth watching, even though I still see some writing errors. And Van plays bitchy SO well it’s not even funny.

ATWT: I Love You, But… No

Tuesday, November 11th:

If you’re going to commit election fraud at least make it seem plausible. If they had to cheat that badly, did they really have to make it a landslide? And I don’t blame Alison for being furious at Casey.

I don’t blame Noah one bit for being disappointed. Yes, Kevin did nothing but fight dirty during the campaign -- that video that was put up was absolutely wrong, and Alison was treated horribly, but I completely agree with Noah when he says that in the end that was the perfect time to rise above it and fight back clean and be the better person. Stuffing the ballot box just puts him into their level, and this election really brought out the worst in Luke.

Luke, I can’t believe you. You know how Noah feels about lying now, and this election. I think overtime, maybe Noah has learned a thing or two about how lying or downright masking the truth in any way only makes things worse, and he doesn‘t want to continue doing it. Especially during the green card marriage and Maddie situations. Luke can look as desperate as he wants, but that really doesn’t seem to be able to do anything to change his mind. This is as hard for Noah as it is for Luke. The Dean called him and wants to know the truth.

Monday, November 10, 2008

GSN: New Look

At the end of this week, GSN debuted a brand new logo and new slogan, “Play Every Day.”

I think this is a really refreshing change and about time too. I really like how game show-like the graphics are. I like the new IDs with the game show hosts (makes me wish that they could get some folks like Bob Eubanks, Bill Rafferty, Monty Hall, or Wink Martindale to come along and make some of their own too). It’s not like it was in 2004 at all. The network doesn’t try to look desperately hip. I also find that they don’t give an unwelcome vibe to the loyal audience. They just give a really fun one. And I know the changeover period -- or what’s known to the bigger game show fans as “Dark Period 2” -- was over 4 years ago, but the logo even after most of the reality stuff was phased out reminded me too much of it at times, and I think that’s why I’m not sad to see the previous logo and schemes go.

There are only a couple of really minor issues that I have, one that I don’t like that with the pop-up banners, most of them cover the whole bottom half of the screen, and still, it’d be nice to see all of the daytime shows promoted individually. However, the new daytime promo is very inviting.

Nitpicks aside, a really good style revamping by GSN.

ATWT: Election Day

Tuesday, November 4th:

The campaign on the other side makes me sick. Maybe I gave too much credit to Kevin last time. When he said to Luke that there are other issues that are important and when he kept warning Mark against campaigning nastily… you know, for one second, I thought he actually seemed to care just a little bit about this election. But in the end, not one real issue came out of his mouth during this whole time. Luke is still getting cheap shots by Mark over his sexuality, and the free beer bribing for votes is just absolutely appalling.

I don’t think for one minute that what Luke did was right. Not one bit. Stuffing the ballot box was wrong. However, I do understand his reasons for doing it. Luke was treated like pure crap off screen by Kevin and apparently a lot of the senior class early in 2007, and the mere thought of the campaign on the other side winning by using bribes of alcohol and downright dirty tricks like that homophobic video that lackey Mark put on USTUBE (that’s YouTube for the Oakdalians for those out of the know) makes him furious and he‘s tired of the B.S., and he’s also sick of being the underdog. Normally, when a character does something that’s out of his or her usual realm on this show for the worse, there’s no motivation or story behind it at all (i.e. Adam Munson, Craig Montgomery), but in this case the motivation is purely there and Luke’s reasons for having the ballot box stuffed is there for us to see. The viewer doesn’t have to contemplate why and I thank the writers for doing this.

The only true double-u tee eff moment I really had was when Luke was quoting of all people, Colonel Nutjob. Now we KNOW something’s seriously wrong and I’m glad Noah called him out on this too, as well as wanting to stuff the ballot box with phony votes. I just love Noah in this storyline. I like how calm, cool and collected he has been throughout this whole ordeal. The characters really balance each other out. And it was so heartbreaking at the end when Noah and Luke saw each other after the “win.” You could clearly see how disappointed Noah was. This election has made him into a different person now. This isn’t the man that he fell in love with.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween Episodes: Game Show Style

As far as the game shows go, it looks like another really good year for Halloween. I still cringe about theme weeks on syndie Deal or No Deal because of how the NBC version has seriously overdone the concept. But in the case of holidays, I generally make an exception and I must say that they did a good job with this week. Wheel of Fortune was certainly another. I loved the decorations. And The Price Is Right has done it again with a brilliantly themed episode. I liked the spooky border at the beginning as well. Also, the models looked really nice in their costumes and Rich looked great as Zorro. GREAT showcases.

For the classic game show fans there were some goodies on GSN, including three episodes of Super Password and a week’s worth of Family Feud with Ray Combs. And while I’m not a fan of multiple Karn airings, I admit it’s nice seeing the Halloween episodes again. I think Family Feud is the show that I look forward to most this time of the year. I love the costumes that the families wear, and the Halloween themed survey questions, albeit some of them on the recent versions can be a tad on the gross side. I love seeing John O'Hurley and his son Dylan in their costumes as well. And they even make the music appropriate for the occasion. It really makes me wish that they would put the same effort in around December and have a Christmas week. I’m sure it would be truly great.

The only thing I really hate is that I managed to miss the Halloween episodes of I’ve Got A Secret this weekend in the overnight block. That show managed to make some really awesome holiday shows and Halloween was no exception. Oh well, there’s always next year.

Halloween Episodes

There was some pretty interesting stuff for Halloween this past week, and being the holiday episode freak that I am, I thought I’d talk about some of it.

Ellen did a great job with her Halloween show this year. Though I honestly was expecting more of an outrageous costume like some of her previous ones (like J. Lo and Dr. Phil). I loved the Halloween themed charity dunk tank for breast cancer awareness filled with slime. Wanda Sykes made yet another awesome appearance, this time as a Wall Street businessman. I find Wanda to be a brilliant comedian who never fails to make me laugh.

From what I’ve seen in primetime: You can’t forget the classic Peanuts special It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown on ABC. Supernatural had a great Halloween episode. I am enjoying this season so far a lot. It’s probably my favorite season after season two. And much kudos to Lifetime for airing the Halloween episode of Reba on Halloween night.

The only thing that’s really disappointing to me is pretty much from a local standpoint. With only one airing of The Simpsons here a night, it’s impossible to show off a lot of the Halloween specials, especially the earlier ones, which I think were the best. I don’t know if it’s a national thing or not or if it’s just something that’s done here, but I truly hate that it seems in the past year or so only recent episodes are rerun. This is a show that has enough Halloween episodes to deserve its own marathon on cable or something… *cough* FX *cough* - hint, hint.

To Tell The Truth Coming to GSN Overnights

Another classic is being dusted off from the GSN library. This time, the Goodson-Todman panel show To Tell The Truth.

The black and white Bud Collyer version will replace The Name’s The Same at 3:30 am ET at the end of its cycle. I must say, I will definitely be looking forward to this. It’s one of my favorite panel games, second after What’s My Line? and it’ll be perfect to have these shows following each other.

It was rumored that Password is coming, and honestly, as much as I love Truth and I’m excited to see it, I think now would have been a better time to show this again, considering that the DVD is coming next month.

ATWT: Drastic Measures

Wednesday, October 29th:

I wish I could say I’m surprised to see something so extreme and bizarre as a kidnapping and what could have been attempted rape on this show, but I’m not, considering who the head writer is. I by no means intend to stereotype or sound sexist, but I’d think that a female head writer would write more of their women characters with dignity. You don’t have to degrade the characters constantly in order to produce good drama. I wish this show would treat most of its women better. And not only were these guys complete creeps with Allison, but they were stupid too. Not only did they kidnap someone and force them to strip, but they record it all with a cell phone camera? Idiots. Let’s add this to the America’s Dumbest Criminals file.

I admit, when I first saw Casey punching Mark I wanted him to beat his ass. He deserved it. But, it obviously wasn’t so bright to take that drastic measure when you think about it, especially since Casey is out on parole. And now there’s no available evidence Allison and Casey can find against Mark. Don’t you just hate it when the bad guys prosper? Hopefully that won’t last too long.

Thursday, October 30th:

I hate to admit it, but Kevin has a point here. While it’s truly admirable that Luke wants to help keep the Gay Film Festival alive for his boyfriend, there are other issues that need attention too. Tsk, tsk, Luke. Again, this is no longer about the election anymore.

So not only is Mark a complete ass, but he’s also a horrible liar. And even if Allison was spying, there are better and more tasteful ways to get even than to kidnap and force someone to strip. I was so glad that Margo saw through him immediately and that Casey was let go. I love you Casey Hughes, but please think before you do something in the future. I know you mean well.

ATWT: Holy airtime, Batman!

Wednesday, October 22nd:

I can’t blame Noah for being let down that Luke didn’t tell him first about deciding to run for president. I’m glad that Luke realized that he made a mistake there.

If there’s one thing that’s good about this story is that Luke and Noah are finally hanging out with more people their own age. And I love that Casey is back in the Nuke storyline.

I can’t stand Mark. Not only because of his homophobia, but because with him it’s all about smearing the other side. It’s like right from the bat; it’s all about bashing, not to mention he’s full of crap! And I just hate that. People like this just make my blood boil. It’s why I can really hate politics sometimes. I’m still not a fan of Kevin, but I am glad that with him, he wants to run a clean election.

I loved the PSA at the end. Please vote, everyone, if you haven't already!

Tuesday, October 28th:

After watching this day’s scenes several times, it’s obvious that Luke and Kevin have unresolved issues. I’ve never personally dealt with a high school crush knowing my feelings for them, but I can understand Luke and how hard the matter is; especially if said crush dropped the f-bomb afterwards (and I don’t mean the word that rhymes with “buck”).

Despite my empathizing with Luke with the whole crush on Kevin, I definitely see where Noah’s coming from in this whole matter. Now Noah sees that this whole election business is doing more trouble than it’s worth. It’s not even about the election anymore, it’s gotten personal, and it’s more about beating Kevin than winning the election for helping make Oakdale U a better place. While that ad was truly vile and tasteless, and I don’t blame Luke for getting upset about it, with Noah I understand why he chooses to remain calm. All his life he’s had to prove that he’s a man. And now after finding Luke, he feels as though no longer has to do that. While he understands that Luke is angry, he wants him to take the high road in this matter and I agree completely.

Mark is such an ass. And I can’t believe that Allison got into that car - not that I’m saying that she has what’s coming to her; of course not - but if I were her I’d know what car I were getting into.

One more thing to point out… holy airtime, Batman! If there’s one thing to be impressed about with this episode the most, it’s that pretty much the WHOLE episode was about Luke and Noah’s latest storyline. I think in over the past 14 months, this has never happened before, and I think it’s about time. Other characters and their plots take up good airtime in this exact manner, and it’s about time Luke and Noah started sharing the wealth. FINALLY, not just mere Nuke crumbs, but a whole Nuke DINNER with all the trimmings! And let me take one final second to gush over how adorable Luke and Noah looked in their costumes.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Remembering Jack Narz

I thought it'd be worth mentioning right now because of the pretty decent tribute GSN is giving. At one point a few months ago, I thought it'd might be a good idea to do some sort of "remembering the greats of 2008" towards the very end of the year, which explains why there haven't been remembrance posts yet in regards to Beverlee McKinsey, Harvey Korman, Estelle Getty, etc. I don't think I'll be doing that after this year, and instead I'll just write about celebrity passings as they happen.

Anyway, yet another loss for the game show community. I don't think many people in the fandom knew that Jack was having health problems. Unlike a lot of game show fans, I didn't grow up watching him on Dotto, Seven Keys, Beat the Clock, Concentration, or Now You See It. But thanks to GSN and tape trading, I've had the opportunity to see much of his work, and he's in no doubt one of the best old school hosts I have ever seen. I love any host who is very personable and friendly with the contestants, loves his job, and is good with the games he has to work with, and this man was no exception. I think my favorite show of his so far is Now You See It. I love word games, and this I think was one of the better ones and I wish then-network head of CBS, Fred Silverman, gave it more of a chance.

One other thing to point out. I'm a huge fan of Betty White, and at the Dollar Tree about a year ago was a DVD of three episodes of her 1950's sitcom, Life with Elizabeth. And to my surprise, Jack Narz was the narrator! I always like to see early work of celebrities, and this certainly was no exception.

Now onto GSN's tribute. This week, during the GSN Live block, we will see his week of Match Game '74 at 1:30 pm, and a week of him on Password Plus from later in the run at 2:30 pm (all times Eastern). Note that on that week of Plus, he switches places with brother Tom Kennedy (a.k.a. Jim Narz) on an episode! That will definitely be worth seeing. I agree with some people who say that the skipping of Match Game episodes has gotten to be somewhat ridiculous, but I think in this case, it's worth it. I usually feel that way about celebrity tributes; because, yes, I find it truly annoying when networks skip episodes, but there's still something to look forward to. And I'd much rather GSN air a full week's worth of shows with Jack -- or any other celebrity for that matter -- and give some sort of a proper tribute with what's available instead of them just airing one episode of something at 3:30 am, and then calling it a night. That would have been pretty crappy, and I'm glad they didn't go that route.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

WGN: Lost '80's Week

WGN America is doing it again! From October 27-30, WGN is airing a two hour marathon of 4 different shows on 4 different nights, all apart of a marathon called "The Lost '80's Week!" It'll be as follows, from 8-10 PM eastern time:

Monday, October 27th: Three's a Crowd
Tuesday, October 28th: The Ropers
Wednesday, October 29th: Too Close For Comfort
Thursday, October 30th: Check It Out

Oh. My. God. I am SO excited about this like you can't believe. I've always wanted to see more of The Ropers and Three's a Crowd out of curiosity besides the about two or three of each that I've seen on Nick@Nite and TVLand a couple years back. In fact, I've always thought that they should have just gone ahead and released both shows instead of doing best of Jack and Janet Three's Company sets. I've never seen Check it Out and I'm definitely interested in it after reading more about the show. I have also waited for years to see a full episode of Too Close for Comfort.

With the expansion of the Outta Sight Retro Nights to include ALF, Coach, Bewitched, and I Dream of Jeannie, and also, The Munsters Halloween marathon coming up, there's so much for classic sitcom fans to look forward to this month.

ATWT: Run, Luke, Run!

So, so, so many things to love about this episode.

While Luke has his reservations considering what happened after Dusty's "death," it's totally understandable that Noah wants to talk to Dusty. And I'm glad that Noah said that he can speak for himself. Dusty is the only other person outside of Luke's family that he can really be with. I wasn't always a huge fan of this concept before of Noah being with Dusty, but recently overtime I've managed to deal with it. Character interaction is always a good thing, and well, Noah needs a friend!

Considering Kevin's attitude after Luke came out, it's not surprising to see him still being all awkward and uncomfortable and I'm glad the show remembered this. It's just too obvious that he has an issue with Luke being gay and it's always been this way, even with Luke now having a boyfriend. And how adorable was this -- Luke introduced Noah as his boyfriend! Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think this is the first time that that's happened. Before with other people, it just always seemed to be this awkward introduction with the word "friend" thrown in. I also like the idea of Luke running against Kevin in the election. What perfect timing for that.

I'm sorry, but Brian's still a dick. If he's trying to come off as neutral in all this, then in my honest opinion, he is failing miserably. At the very mention of anything at all that's even remotely gay, he immediately balks. Neutral people don't do that. People who remain neutral don't threaten to quit.

So to wrap things up, Nuke actually really got decent screentime (and yay, Noah even stayed around for the WHOLE show!) and the episode was great. So are the icicles forming in hell as we speak? I really like seeing them just being young and living the life in college. And I hope this storyline lives up to its expectations. It's always nice writing an overall positive review and I hope this continues. For once it looks like Luke and Noah are in a really meaty storyline.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

ATWT: 3-Letter Words

Wednesday, October 1st (deleted bench scene):

Wow, why was this cut? I understand that with shows, some things have to be cut for the time, but really, it’s just all the more disappointing considering how much time is devoted to Nuke. As I mentioned in the previous entry, there are other things that could have been sacrificed for this scene to air. And I think what makes it all the more annoying is that it really was a pretty nice scene. To me it’s always nice seeing these two be there for each other. And we can’t forget a picture of it was used as a promotional device. Lord knows we could have been spared Paul and Meg's latest insanity or Lily and Carly's latest bitch fest so Luke could have one more measly minute. I don't think it was an outlandish request to actually see this on the show. Again, I ask, why was this cut?

Wednesday, October 8th:

Brian is so full of it. He was all for passing out pamphlets at this Oakdale U film festival until he found out it was a gay film festival. Might I add, a film festival that was sponsored by the Gay-STRAIGHT alliance. Excuse the hell out of Luke and Noah for wanting to participate in it. It’s a pretty common fact that young, gay people as well as young straight folk usually have a lot of expendable income. Our moolah is just as green as straight folks’. Something else to point out -- it’s really not that hard of a word to say, Brian. Gay. Gay, gay, gay! For someone like him, it should really be a simple three-letter word. And even if he did have a point, you don’t talk to your boss the way he did. “Kid” and other things like that were uncalled for. He better thank his lucky stars that Luke didn’t hear him calling Lucinda a controlling bitch. Oh, that would have been ug-lee.

And Lily, give me a frickin’ break. Lucinda being involved in Dusty’s death has nothing to do with your relationship with Holden. Holden decided to cheat on Carly on his own. This is why I’ve just started skipping non-Nuke days now. The other storylines can really be hard to take.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

GSN Schedule News

FINALLY! Beginning November 10th, Meredith Vieira’s version of Who Wants to be a Millionaire? is coming to GSN. It will take over most of Regis’ slots, and will air weeknights from 8-9 pm and from 12-1 am. And Sundays at 2 pm replacing Camouflage. And more goodness! Monty Hall’s Beat the Clock is coming back starting November 12th at 2:00 am!

I am so happy to hear Meredith’s version is coming. I love her version, and it’s about time that that the Regis era got a rest for a while. I think Regis’ era was truly great, but it deserves to be on the backburner after 5 years of so much airplay. I know some people including myself were wondering if it was difficult to get this version or not. Guess it’s obviously not.

I was so disappointed to hear that Beat the Clock with Monty Hall was being pulled, and what really ticked me off about it was that it was being pulled just as the final week was starting. I’m glad that’s coming back. It’s a bit odd that it’s coming back on a Wednesday, but I’m thinking that Trivia Trap’s final episode probably airs the day before, so that’s probably what’s up with that. I’d really rather them not start over with Trivia Trap again, air the first 3 or 4 episodes, and then just remove it.

Also this week, Match Game (1979-82 syndie) is back at 9 am, Tic Tac Dough (1978-86 syndie) is on at 9:30, replacing Blockbusters (1980-82 NBC), which stays on Saturdays and Sundays only. I love it to death, but I’m glad Blockbusters is on weekends only right now. It deserves somewhat of a rest in my opinion. I must admit that I kind of wish they’d have gotten either the 1990 version of Match Game, or a different show, like Tattletales to come back and air at 9 am.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Bingo America: Season 2 Premiere

GSN’s interactive play-at-home bingo sensation is back for a new season, with new host Richard Karn, who’s DOUBLING THE FUN! (sorry, I could not resist)

I think Richard’s a better host than Patrick Duffy. And while we’re on the subject of doubling, if there’s one thing I’m glad to not see happen with Karn on this show is that there are no phrases to shout. I thought he was decent on Family Feud out of all three hosts of himself, Louie Anderson, and John O’Hurley, even though John‘s my favorite… I thought he was miles better than Louie. But points had to be taken away for the annoying “I’M DOUBLING/TRIPLING THE POINTS!!!!” that wound up becoming a common habit with his tenure on the show. And I’m glad that none of that is happening here. I think he has really the right amount of energy. Not too loud, not too quiet.

I can take or leave the new audience game. I don’t think it’s that necessary, but at the same time I don’t hate it. But I guess it’s just another way for them to have people win while watching, whether it be in the studio or at home.

I like this bonus game a bit more than last season, but it‘s still not something I‘d consider great. I like the fact that there’s a sort of threat element -- The Wrecking Ball, but I’m still rather bored by it. Overtime in season 1, I lost interest in it pretty quickly. I just don’t find it to be very exciting.

For those who want to check out the show, it's on at 6:30 PM eastern, right after Pyramid.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

ALF Starts Tonight!

In case you haven’t heard, the classic ‘80’s alien sitcom ALF is being added to the WGN America Sunday night line-up from 6-7 PM eastern! But that’s not all, it’s also airing on Monday nights as well from 9-10 PM eastern!

I remember that it had been a long time since I had seen this show before the first marathon a few months back, and in seeing that one, I don’t love the show as much as I did when I was a kid but I do find it to be pretty enjoyable still.

This is great news and everything, but I do think it’s odd that the show doesn’t seem to be airing in order and that starting next week the same Monday episodes will air again on Sunday… well, as far as order goes, maybe it‘s like with WKRP in Cincinnati and they‘re airing the show in airdate order. But in spite of that, I do love that a new classic is being added to WGN’s schedule. When changes were announced for this network I did cringe at first, since these days when most networks do some sort of identity change, it’s really for the worse. But WGN has so much variety now. Comedies, dramas, movies, they still have baseball for the Cubs and Sox fans, and the local WGN News. Sunday evening’s line-up is now practically filled with classics, with the exception of the 10 PM news. And there is programming from multiple eras. I may not like every show airing (for instance, 7th Heaven) but there’s still plenty of things to interest many people.

I miss the days when cable had a bit more variety and now it’s coming back, at least with this channel, and networks like AmericanLife and RTN (now if I could only get AmericanLife). So while networks like TVLand and ION are busy keeping inconsistent schedules, not airing fan favorites and kissing 18-39 derriere, I’ll be sitting back watching a station that has more to offer, and WGN America is one of them.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

ATWT: Long Time, No See

Wednesday, October 1st:

Well, it’s been a month-long wait for fans of Luke and Noah, Noah’s finally back after his vacation in Italy! They start off the show, as Noah surprises Luke with a mini Statue of David while he’s working on his laptop. I loved how they hugged and kissed and I loved the part about the Italian words. But, dang it, Luke gets a call from Brian about having to go to a meeting. But it’s only the first few minutes of the show. Looks real promising, right?



It’s later in the show, but after extremely long conversations with Carly, Jack, Liberty, Janet, Meg, and Dusty, where’s the rest of Noah’s first day back? And when they’re finally at Metro towards the end, things come to a halt because Lily’s there and Carly shows up with Holden, so Luke and Noah decide to leave to go find Kim. Their three-and-a-half minute contribution to the show is over. I’m sorry, but Lily and Carly have bitch fests all the time lately. The same old “stay away from my husband” bit can wait.

I hate to be negative, but this episode’s time was a new low. What was the point of covering them in soap mags and the like for this episode if they were just going to be on for that little amount? And what makes it worse is their last scene was edited out. There's a slight chance it may be on later this week but I'm not even going to bother getting my hopes up. Would it really have been that bad to have an overexposed character like Meg take a day off for a change so some more characters not featured often could get some airtime? I have no problem these days skipping some episodes if I’m tired of the same people. It’s sad that a four year old’s story was featured more recently. Oh, and speaking of that story, Luke is Ethan’s godfather. Where was he during a much of that? And I think what really makes it disappointing is that this was so hyped up in Soap Opera Digest and other places such as the show's e-mail service as a big reunion that can’t be missed. A show that’s been on for over 50 years should know by now that when a couple reunites either after a break-up, or if one comes back from being out of the country, or hell, even if one came back from the dead, then that is something that should have some pretty big treatment.

What the hell is this show so afraid of? Have fan campaigns in the past several months taught them anything? They should know by now that there are plenty of people who want to see them on a regular basis. Does this show not want to be around after next year? If they do, then there’s a fail-safe plan: listen to your fans. As host Jim Perry on Card Sharks in regards to viewers when signing off for the day would often say, "without you, we're nothing." It's a very true concept. If only they'd get on the ball, then they'd have many more satisfied fans overall.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Play it Back: 90’s Game Shows: Review

Finally got a chance to review this, sorry about the delay.

Anyhow… I must say this was pretty okay.

I wasn’t too big a fan of the dating segment. I mean, I don’t blame them for being apart of the show, they really first took off in this decade, but I just don’t see Studs as much of a game show, and I repeat what I said about Love Connection in the ‘80’s special here. And for what it’s worth, that barking guy on Love Connection was just creepy to me -- I NEVER want someone to snarl at me like that during anytime on a date.

I did enjoy the parts about Hollywood Squares, Wheel of Fortune, and Jeopardy!. Although it’s my favorite version of the show, It’s been a really long time since I’ve seen really early episodes of Bergeron’s Hollywood Squares, so I don’t remember any Baldwin brothers appearing. And of course, the "YOU FOOL!" clip surfaces again, except on this special, no celebrity faces are blurred like on Most Outrageous Game Show Moments. It’s been played before several times but still worth a laugh -- as I mentioned before, the repeating is inevitable in most cases. It was nice seeing clips from the earlier days but I wish we had seen a bit more.

Good for them for remembering a very important element of Wheel of Fortune -- the puzzle board change. I remember when it first happened. It’s hard to believe that was almost 12 years ago. And I couldn’t believe that they even referred to the late ’90’s set of Jeopardy! as what the more hardcore members of the game show community always called it -- the sushi bar set! I found that to be quite funny for some odd reason.

And of course, you can’t have a ‘90’s retrospective without the mention of Who Wants to be a Millionaire?. It was only on for a few months in 1999, but this show had managed to become a huge hit very quickly. I remember very well how much this impacted the country. With parodies everywhere and my own self annoying my mother by asking "Is that your final answer?" over and over. I liked this part, although I’m not a fan of John Carpenter. Sorry, I just found him to be a bit cocky.

Pretty decent overall but I do think the 1980’s was the best special. This one I would rate second, with the ‘70’s retrospective last. I found the 1970’s one to be rather disappointing.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Trivial Pursuit: America Plays: Review

September 22nd marked the debut of a new TV version of the classic Hasbro board game, Trivial Pursuit, called Trivial Pursuit: America Plays.

The host of the new version is Christopher Knight, probably most known for playing Peter Brady on The Brady Bunch, and we can’t forget his reality stint My Fair Brady on VH-1. I think Christopher here does a really decent job. He doesn’t have to do that much since he doesn’t have to ask the questions. But his volume is very good, and he’s really good at interacting with the contestants.

With this show, I really like the concept of the in-studio players versus America. I like how the questions asked come from people of all types. There’s also a good, wide range of categories. I know some of the history questions and some of the material from the other categories, but quite honestly, pop culture is pretty much my forte and I see myself doing best at that subject. For instance, as a fan of the show Friends, I totally knew the character Joey’s last name is Tribbiani.

As far as the minor things go, I really like the set. It looks modern enough without looking too much like a busy primetime dramatic game show. The music and other cues used from what I heard sound pretty good. Simple enough and not overdramatic.

I haven’t seen the 90’s version before so I really don’t have anything to compare the current version with. But overall, I say this is a very good effort. It’s a pretty enjoyable show.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

TPIR: 37th Season Premiere

The first day of fall marked the season premiere of America’s longest-running daytime game show. Price’s 37th season got off to a pretty exciting start with Most Expensive. Heartbreaking loss though.

As reported this summer, we got a new pricing game, Gas Money! I really like the concept behind it. With the name and everything, it really marks our current time period. And not only do you get a car if you win the game, but you also win up to $10,000!

As I probably said before, I didn’t have a digital TV converter box before this season so I’m finally seeing the show in widescreen now and I must say, it’s another really interesting experience. I don’t have an HDTV and even I can tell how even better the show looks with the HD cameras. And speaking of looks… the set this season is pretty good in my opinion. Pretty much the Million Dollar Spectacular set brought to daytime, sans the black floor, also as reported earlier this summer. I do like the new big wheel design. Though I’m really not looking forward to seeing the purple coloring with that. I like how the show looks modern enough without being too modern.

I’m looking forward very much to the rest of the season and I’m glad that small changes were made without the show losing its feel.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Supernatural: Season 4 Premiere

I really, REALLY enjoyed the season 4 premiere of Supernatural last night.

A lot of the minor things I really loved. I loved how defensive Sam and Bobby were when they first saw Dean. What a touching hug between Sam and Dean. And Bobby splashing holy water on Dean was so funny. Can’t blame them for being protective at first since they fight demons and evil spirits pretty much for a living. There’s also that bit about the iPod in the Impala; of course Dean would hate that.

I am curious about the angle on the angel of the Lord but I am definitely looking forward to seeing how it goes. The mystery element is very intriguing, and will really be worth trying to find out. And I’m definitely glad that the show didn’t waste too much time reviving Dean. Even Jensen jokes that if Dean weren’t to come back, it’d be the Sam Winchester show, so there’d have been really no point to tease the viewers any longer with that in my eyes, so I’m glad they didn’t go that route.

Supernatural is my favorite current series right now and I am really glad this show pretty much doesn’t disappoint at all. I’m always on the edge of my seat. And what’s more, I’m behind on my DVD buying, and I had finally bought season 1 a couple weeks ago. I didn’t begin watching until towards the end of that, so there were plenty of episodes I hadn’t seen yet. I finished with that, and what I noticed is that this show is addictive as it is when seeing it in first run… it’s been the first time in quite a while where it’s like “I cannot miss a single episode of this” with a current show. And with the DVD’s, it was so hard to stop watching. This show is just so addictive, especially with having multiple episodes on hand.

Here’s to a great new season of Supernatural!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Play it Back: '80's Game Shows: Review

I do like this special in particular better than last week’s.

As usual, I love the trivia element. I also learned a couple things. For one thing, I didn’t know Bob Eubanks recorded a song.

We do see some of the same clips again -- which I mentioned last time is pretty much inevitable -- but at least it’s nice seeing some fresh material. And I didn’t know Mark DeCarlo was a contestant on Sale of the Century, and it was nice seeing some clips. It's a shame that Fremantle probably doesn't even let them air part of an episode. It looks like the clips shown were from a personal collection. Again, a little bit more fresh material could have been used. But I thought this was a bit better. I’ve seen Pat Sajak kiss Vanna White on his last daytime Wheel of Fortune show, but I’ve never seen it be featured in some sort of documentary. Same with the France-French moment on Password Plus.

Not liking the fact that Love Connection made this special much at all. It’s not that I have a serious problem with this show; I just don’t see much of a gaming element in it. But it was a big part of the ‘80’s and provided decent fodder for the show, and it’s not as if the show was bombarded with Love Connection clips… despite the fact that I hardly think of it as a game show, I can deal with it.

Loved the Betty White part. It’s so true. Betty is a very important part of our game show culture. From being on every incarnation of Password, to Pyramid, and other game shows, especially in the 1980’s… to even hosting a show of her own, albeit short-lived, Just Men!, in 1983. And can’t forget about Vicki Lawrence. Another great and very entertaining game player. Her walking out on The $100,000 Pyramid after a bad week is probably one of my favorite memorable game show moments. I also loved Vanna White’s mention earlier in the show. You can't have an '80's game show special without mentioning her.

Caroline I thought was better on this show too. And it was nice seeing Wink again, and Chuck Woolery this time around. The other commentators I thought were pretty decent again as well.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Play it Back: 70’s Game Shows: Review

GSN debuted a new decade documentary series Play it Back, on Sunday. And this episode focused on the game shows of the 1970’s. I must say, I was rather disappointed in this.

I think by now, with the amount of game show documentaries and specials that have been done over the years, it’s just inevitable to see something repeated. I mean, Match Game was one of those shows that defined the 1970’s, so it’s expected to see some of the same clips again (i.e. “boobs”, School Riot, et. al.). And I knew we couldn’t spend the hour without having discussion about the Newlywed Game’s “In the butt, Bob” moment, no matter how overplayed it is. But when most of the show is the same stuff we’ve already seen several times before, I can see how that can be annoying. The 1970’s had near 70 game shows throughout the course of the decade, so I was expecting much more material than what we saw. Though there was some fresh stuff shown, well, at least for a documentary it was fresh. I never thought I’d see someone comment about the $38,750+ win on Jackpot!, and I’ve never seen Billy Crystal’s record win on $20,000 Pyramid mentioned in a documentary. But still, I was expecting more than what we saw.

I did like the trivia questions between breaks. I mean, I’m a bigger fan of the genre than the average viewer, so I pretty much knew that 1975 had the most game shows that aired. And I’m sure not every fan knows the exact date of the premiere of Split Second.

Caroline Rhea -- who I do love, by the way -- I really wasn’t feeling that much here. The commentators I had no real problem with. I really liked seeing Bob Goen, Bob Eubanks, and Wink Martindale.

I just hope the ‘80’s and ‘90’s episodes are better. But if they’re not, we’ve still got the marathons at least, right? I still cannot wait for $25,000 Pyramid.

Wheel and Jeopardy!: Season Premieres

Yesterday marked the season premieres for the current versions of Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!. For Wheel of Fortune, it’s the start of the 26th season. It’s the silver 25th for Jeopardy!.

Nothing that significant happened with either show so I’m just going to merge these into one entry.

Wheel of Fortune debuted its new Million Dollar space, it’s basically Bankrupt-Million-Bankrupt, replacing the Bankrupt-$10,000-Bankrupt wedge. The 25th anniversary wedge is also gone, makes sense since the 25th year was last year. It’s also goodbye to the Big Money wedge. I’m kind of mixed on the million dollar element. I don’t like it that much because there’s so much extra stuff on this show now, and I truly don’t think adding something else is necessary. Having so much of the fluff has really turned me off of watching every night. However, there’s the fact that on this show, you really have to work and earn your way towards winning that kind of money, and I do like that. And with the strings attached, we’re probably not going to see one that often. So I do think there’s a positive part to it.

As far as Jeopardy! goes, I do like the silver logo. It’s very appropriate. I also hope we get to see more “looks back” at the show, like one of yesterday’s categories. I like the new main theme music. The Final Jeopardy! one I’m really not a fan of. I just think it’s way too light for this show.

I must remark on one other thing. I recently got a DTV converter box. So it’s really a treat seeing both shows look so crisp. And seeing them in widescreen is a rather theatrical experience.

Syndie Millionaire: Season Premiere

The start of the seventh season on daytime syndicated Millionaire saw some new changes to the show, as pointed out recently during the summer.

There are the changes to the graphics and music. Also the addition of the two lifelines Double Dip from Super Millionaire and Ask The Expert. The potential topics from questions are now shown, and we can’t forget that dreaded clock. It’s pretty interesting seeing these changes play out.

I must say, it’s not the clock I have a problem with. The clock helps add suspense. But I do think that the clock should not start until after all of the possible answers have been read. That just sounds more fair to me.

Nothing much to say about Double Dip. It’s done the exact same way as it was on Super. I really like the Ask The Expert lifeline. I can’t say I’m going to miss 50:50 all that much and I never really liked Switch the Question.

The graphics take a bit of getting used to pretty much for the fact that they‘re brand-new, but in watching the episode again, I really don’t mind them at all. While they are obviously different, they still help keep the feeling of the show. Same with the music and the ticking embedded in it obviously fits with the new addition of the clock.

Meredith’s still herself, which is good. I do love her on this show.