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Hypester Alert: Cable Television Rundown Mashup

Happy tax day everybody! In celebration of the official end of tax season, enjoy this special edition of Hypester Alert. This time, I mash up two of my features to create an extra special column. Hooray for mash-ups!

The Pacific

So, obviously, big budget (think $200 million) miniseries produced by HBO are totally hyped on many levels. They're advertised to death by the big budget behemoth that is HBO. They are relentlessly reviewed by critics everywhere. They are discussed in high school history classes. They are, folks, the very definition of hypester TV. So when parts one and two of this 10-part miniseries were entertaining but a little stodgy, I was getting somewhat ready to write this miniseries off as yet another product of the HBO hype machine.

Then, part three debuted and played a little like an episode of Mad Men -- all period costumes, hushed romances, and deep longing. Part four focused on James Badge Dale's character Robert Leckie and the psychological aspects of warfare. (Side note: Dale has been a revelation in this miniseries. To think that the only other thing I've seen him in was when he had to cut off his own arm on the third season of 24...) And finally, part five dug into the unbelievably intense warfare, depicting the horrifying two-month-long battle, the Battle of Peleliu, which fully utilizes that $200 million budget.



And, frankly, part five got me fully hooked, emotionally and viscerally. All the set-up in the first four parts was setting up the rules of the miniseries. We learned enough about the soldiers and about the method of warfare that when the first truly intense battle sequence commenced, it was truly jawdropping. Sure, it may have lifted an element or two from Saving Private Ryan, but something about the way the war was waged, in an environment totally unfamiliar and with a mission so vague, was absolutely horrifying. I had to pick my jaw up off of the floor by the time the episode finished. Five more parts to go, and I cannot wait to see how the rest of the miniseries develops.
Hypester assessment: Worthy of Hype



Glee

The show that I so badly want to love to hate but can't help but love came back to Fox on Tuesday night with an installment that had me starting to tell Brigitte that I was finally getting kind of sick of the show and ended with me begrudgingly loving it. After a self-imposed four-month break from new episodes, the first season continued with an episode jam-packed with what made the show successful in its first run -- fun song sequences juxtaposed with sad romances.

What lacks in Matthew Morrison's main character Will Scheuster is made up for in spades by the scene-stealing of Jane Lynch. Lynch is just so damn funny and so incredibly evil that she makes up for any lame, going-nowhere scene with Morrison involved. And Lea Michele, playing the confident-yet-insecure Rachel, is still a standout performer and character on the show.

Still, I am feeling very, very wary of where this show is headed. The ratings are through the roof, and creator Ryan Murphy has promised that things will essentially only get "bigger and better." That means awkward things like Jane Lynch doing a music video of Madonna's "Vogue" that premiered with Tuesday's episode. Um, what's the point of singing a song and making a fake music video that is exactly the same as the real thing? Knowing how Murphy's own Nip/Tuck fell off the rails when he grew tired of working on the show, I fully expect this show to implode any time soon. Enjoy your run as a Worthy of Hype show, Glee...you're officially on watch.
Hypester assessment: Worthy of Hype (barely)

Lost
Whether or not you think the "flash-sideways" episodes thus far into the season have been worth it, the final season has (predictably) become mindblowingly awesome. Tuesday night's "Everybody Loves Hurley" was yet another great episode that has rendered me unable to analyze the many things going on. At this point, it's just time to sit back and enjoy the ride.
Hypester assessment: Worthy, worthy, so worthy of Hype.

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  1. Blogger Papa Thor | 7:18 AM |  

    Tax day! Oh Crap! Can I deduct Nico and Beckett?

  2. Blogger qualler | 8:07 AM |  

    I already tried that and wasn't able to. If only...I would have saved thousands of dollars on my taxes! Quick, doggies...turn into real children!

  3. Blogger chris | 3:33 PM |  

    Okay I was way doped up on Percocet, but I was very very bored by the Glee premiere, which is saying something for me because the one reason I kept watching that show through its first season every week was that even though it was not intelligent, it was always entertaining. And that "Vogue" video was very pointless. Jane Lynch is starting to be the only worthwhile aspect of the show, with the musical numbers becoming more and more lackluster and phoned in, which means they'll almost assuredly overuse her (as they did this week) in the eps to come, once again turning a Ryan Murphy show into a caricature of itself, just as you're predicting, Qualler.

  4. Blogger DoktorPeace | 5:07 PM |  

    I warned you all about Glee. I warned you!!!! Boaoaoaoooooo!

    *slinks back into the shadows*

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