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Premiere Thoughts: Ringer, Parenthood


Note: This is the first in a series of shorter, "seriously-off-the-top-of-his-head" posts on Fall premiere month for TV shows. These are not intended to be formal reviews and might not cover every show the day after they air. But, that's what blogs are for, amiright?

Ringer
Tuesdays, 9/8c on the CW

Wow, where do I begin with Ringer? Do I start with Sarah Michelle Gellar's deliciously (but also, boringly) hammy double performance as Siobhan / Bridget? Do I mention the constant, beat-you-over-the-head-with-the-symbolism use of mirrors to show the duplicity in people? Do I point out the dialogue that, as Brigitte says, "writes itself?" How about that ridiculously hilarious looking green screen action that wouldn't feel out of place in a film by Tommy Wiseau?

I think all of those items are what potentially makes Ringer one of the first shows that I can think of that I want to watch on a weekly basis to fulfill my Bad Movie quota that needs to be fulfilled. Don't get me wrong - this is a bad show, but like most bad movies I watch, is alternately unintentionally gut-busting and boring at the same time. Think The Lake House, where everything is boring for a long time and then Keanu Reeves has a huge sneeze out of nowhere. Sarah Michelle Gellar, please deliver me some moments like that. You have the built in advantage of the awesome(ly bad) scenes where there are two of you talking to each other in a really bland voice where you can only tell which one is which because Siobhan is hoity-toity and evil with her hair up while Bridget is down-to-earth and good (but for some reason decides the only way to cover up her twin sister's death is to start leading a double life? Huh?)

Grade: C+ (but also, A)

Parenthood
Tuesdays, 10/9c on NBC

Here are things I am happy about with regard to Parenthood's return:

1) The clear decision to abandon some of the things implied in the somewhat-disastrous season two finale (Crosby appearing to win back Jasmine with his new, crappy house to show that he's responsible.)
2) Adam going a little bit bonkers and sad without a job. Few play "normal on the surface, crazy on the inside" better than Peter Krause over the years, and the sequence where he was sitting at home by himself doing wacky stuff was delightful.
3) Haddie's lookin' hot!
4) Alex (Michael B. Jordan) looks like he'll be even more involved this season, which is great (even if it appears in the somewhat groan-worthy "he punched a dude at a party and now he's being arrested even though the cops didn't seem to bust any of the underage drinkers at the party" plot.)
5) Amber (Mae Whitman) also forgot about her car accident thing and now is back to a more plausible plotline, getting her own apartment. Letting Sarah (Lauren Graham) and Amber play off each other in the hip warehouse-style apartment was pretty wonderful.
6) The return of one of the few shows that gets Brigitte and I to get up and dance during the credits!
7) Joel and Julia, as usual, have a pretty stupid plotline with Julia wanting to "buy" the coffee girl's baby because she isn't keeping it (which, at first I guess I thought was implying she was gonna get an abortion, which seemed darker than the show needed to go, but now am just realizing "not keeping" could mean "giving up for adoption" as well. I'm trained much more for Misery Porn TV than Family Time TV.)

Welcome back, Parenthood.

Grade: A-

  1. Blogger Unspar! | 9:22 AM |  

    For some reason, I remember more about The Lake House than I do about probably half the movies I've seen.

  2. Blogger chris | 11:45 AM |  

    Haven't watched Ringer yet, but watched the Parenthood premiere last night.

    Very glad they went the opposite of what was implied with the Crosby/Jasmine subplot, though I assume we'll still end up with them together by the third season's conclusion.

    I really don't want to watch Juno: The TV Show.

    Adam needs to take a Women's Studies class so he can deal with his "providing" issues.

    I liked the meta-joke about FNL with Michael B. Jordan in the car.

    I am looking forward to Alex finally having some weaknesses/negative traits, though I hope it rises beyond "I used to be a criminal and now I'm angry sometimes."

    Remember when Sara(h?) was a playwright? Yeah, me neither.

    Overall, pretty good show!

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