I am pretty happy with how this season’s shows have been going.
Alias started out as kind of a let down after last season’s cliff hanger, they just raised more questions and didn’t answer much. They last two episodes have been really really good though and it seems to be picking up steam again. It still amazes me how J.J. Abrams can spin the show out and start heading in another direction better than it was before, not just once, but about three times now in as many seasons. Hopefully the the huge payoff they have been building up for three seasons won’t be lame.
Smallville is moving along well, and I am happy with where it is going. I just recently started watching this after getting caught up with the second season finale in August. I like it and it is interesting, but not up to the writing levels of Buffy or the story arc of Alias. It starts out with bonus points because everybody knows what happens after the show ends. They play off this really well and have lots of Superman jokes. The producers have stated that they won’t ever have him wear the suit or fly in the the show, but I really wish they would make a spin off after the smallville run with the same charcters in the “normal” Superman stories.
The West Wing is hurting. badly. The Sorkin dialog is nowhere to be seen, and as hard as they try to do the same kind of dialog and shots, it just doesn’t work. It also seems as if the characters have all been taken over by aliens. They open their mouths but words that are totally out of character come out. They are nearly all petty drama queens now. One of the best parts about Sorkin’s dialog is that it will make anyone sound like a genius. That was most of the draw of the show for me, these people were running the country and even though I didn’t agree with their politics a lot of the time, they were damn smart. Stress, too much to do, crazy world events, no problem, give them some more cofee and they were good to go for another twenty four and do it better than mere mortals. I think at it’s heart it was almost a superhero show, these characters pretty much forfieted the rest of their lives so they could run the country, so they weren’t going to let petty things get in they way of that even though every once in a while normal human emotions and conflicts would peek out only to be shoved back down so they could get the job done. All that appears to have been smashed down by John Wells. I wouldn’t want the characters as they are now to be running the country, while before I woulnd’t have minded much.
Angel started off with a really great Joss episode, fell down a bit for a few episodes while they established the new setting, rules, and conflicts and now is going strong. Whichever of the writers thought of the Angel taking over W&H thing should be given a big raise. They had kind of written themselves into a corner with the detective agency thing by season three, and there was no way they could have a bigger “big bad” than the first evil and an angry god. The show had to reset to some degree of the characters wouldn’t have been beleivable in their ability to handle everything. Playing off of the uncertainty of what the senior partners actually are and what their motives are is great. We already found out that the “powers that be” are more a dark shade of grey than white and were playing them all for years. Maybe now we will find out that the senior partners are more on the side of good than we thought. The only thing that will really disapoint me about this season is if they bring Cordy out of her coma and she is the person she was last season rather than the one she was in season three. They took her to a bad place last season and they need to bring her back as likeable so she won’t be eternally hated.
I have totally written off Enterprise, it is not even worth casually watching if it happens to be on. Obviusly B&B are so devoid of sense about what makes a good sci-fi show that they can never get it right. It is really too bad, they probably could have kept ST going indefinately until they ran it into the ground. As many sci-fi show as get unfairly canned after one or two seasons, B&B took what was basically the unsinkable flagshipof sci-fi shows handed to them on a silver platter and promptly started drilling as many holes as they could. It is almost a crime when there are so many quality sci-fi writers that never even get their chance at a show.