votw ii.31: The Sun Never Shines On TV
That is the name of my band. We thought about going with The Sun Never Shone On TV, but we all like living in the present, despairing in the now. Our famousest incarnation was as St. Canard — we were unstoppable. Unfortunately, dissension in the ranks — and the hate of the Red Ring of Death — had us regrouping as The Griefgod Inscrutable. To a much lesser extent, we were the one-off No Seas Maje. We were also part of the second lineup of The Strikebeards, but that one went the way of the Padron. (F your i, I’m a pretty entertaining-slash-outrageous lead singer.)
When I say “we,” I speak, of course, of my brother and me, and I, of course, speak of Rock Band Rock Band 2.
Released on Sunday, we got on that and we immediately tackled Duran Duran’s “Hungry Like The Wolf,” among others I’m sure. Then I scratched the disk the disk got scratched and I demanded the Best Buy associate for a new copy. She knew what was up, but The Sun Never Shines On TV found itself jamming to Squeeze last night. Our session came to an abrupt end when Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles came up in the form of Season 2, Episode 2. Helluva segue…
Fall is here, and after the TV lull of Summer (Mad Men, Phelps, Liukin, and Johnson notwithstanding), I am more than ready to become the braindead couch potato I was born to be. (I used to be a bed potato, but our HDTV is in the living room.) This blog will be dedicated to the wonderful programming that awaits us all in NTSC land (soon to be ATSC). For all of my international friends, I’m sorry I cannot cover the goings-on of PAL, but I’m sure you can catch Smallville sometime…
Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles (8:00, FOX)
Save the outcast boy, save the world. We all know the premise of the Terminator franchise — Austrian neo-Nazi becomes governor of a liberal state as a Republican and James Cameron gets slightly richer. The second Terminator is still a fun movie to watch, so how could a FOX serial ever live up to that? Well, instead of having Robocop from the future as the omen of cybernetic doom, you have a luscious apparatus in the form of wooden Summer Glau as Cameron (snicker, snicker), the not-quite-human piece of ass ready to kill either other Terminators or the boy who she was sent to protect (by the boy himself, in the future). Throw in a MILF, a useless savior, going-nowhere subplots, a Beverly Hills 90210 alum, and the impending Judgment Day, and you’ve got a decent sci-fier.
My main concern with this show is, what can possibly be their endgame? We know Skynet wins, so, what, the puny humans are just gonna keep pushing it back? Christian Bale trades in his cape and cowl next year for brooding freedom fighter fatigues in next year’s Terminator future perfect blockbuster, so until then, we can only hope that the robot and mom will make out in this TV show. Or that FOX won’t ax it because of its costly special effects. (There’s a liquid-cool Alex Mack Capri-Sun T-1000 on the show now!)
The Big Bang Theory (8:00, CBS)
Ah, the comedy tailored for geeks and the people who make fun of them. For one such as me, jokes about The Flash, Halo 3, and not getting the girl are awesome (sad?) to digest, and for your everyday Other, it’s a hilarious way to see how that growing sect of people in society behave. Really, I don’t know anyone who’s not a geek. Except maybe Carol, but she’s a dork, anyway. The overarching premise of this hit show (besides Star Wars allusions) is nerdcore Leonard is trying to get with the show’s eye candy, the I’ve-wanted-her-for-years Kaley Cuoco. I can make a joke about her last name, but I’m too lost in her hips to attempt anything. So to speak.
How I Met Your Mother (8:30, CBS)
(If you’re wondering, I manage conflicting schedules by catching repeats down the road.) How are people not watching this great little show about five New York compadres? It’s constantly on the verge of cancellation, and it’s a real pity considering the talent and creativity this gem brings every week. The cast of characters? Ted, the wistful every-buddy determined to find the love of his life — and he did (who is the titular mama?), since the show is narrated by himself 30 years into the future, as Bob Saget. (SAGET!!!!!) You have Lily and Marshall, the cutesy-awesome couple with a slanted apartment. There’s Robyn, the hott news reporter who was once a late-’80s tween pop sensation in Canada (think Canuck Debbie Gibson). Lastly, we come to awesome incarnate with NPH’s Barney, that hellacious chick-plower whose catchphrases are as a LEGENDARY as his suits. Did I mention his father may be Bob Barker? No? Well, I shouldn’t. You ought be watching, anyway.
Heroes (9:00, NBC)
Season Two of Heroes was lackluster. I’m being generous. Peter didn’t know who he was, Hiro was in feudal Japan, Sylar was chilling with would-be immigrants, and they still gave Nikki face time. The best part of the short-lived series? Kristen Bell, the randy sexpot. It’s been over nine months since I last got to see Claire, the cheerleader that was saved for the sake of the world, and that is a crime against humanity. (I represent humanity as a whole.) This third season will get us back on track, they say, and things look promising since this story arc has been labeled “Villains.”
Fringe (9:00, FOX)
This X-Files meets LOST thriller (forged by the latter’s exec producer) only premiered last week, but it seems really promising. You have the makings of a good suspenseful show — real-world echoes, mysterious evil organization, interesting characters you hope will evolve, and the kook who played Denethor in The Lord of the Rings. Also, you got the kid from Dawson’s Creek The Mighty Ducks and Keen Eddie…Bring back Keen Eddie!
Eli Stone (10:00, ABC)
How many prophets of God will invade TV to champion the religious right and propel Amber Tamblyn to our consciousness? Not enough! Eli Stone is such a show. I was actually really worried that they would drop the guillotine on this one. Ratings were criminally low last season, but lucky for us Eli Stone fans (all seven of us), the ABC suits adore the show, and so it stayed. (A similar sitch occurred with Gilligan’s Island — network exec’s wife liked Bonanza better, and bye-bye, Skipper.) Starring one of the droogs from Trainspotting, it is a heartwarming tale of a wealthy lawyer knocked down by a life-threatening aneurysm. Is he hallucinating or receiving divine inspiration? Whatever you may think, you cannot deny how beautiful Maggie is. Who the hell is Maggie, you ask? Only the cutest thing to hit TV since Pam Beesley!
Pushing Daisies (8:00, ABC)
I have no idea where this idyllic Tim Burton-esque dramedy left off last season. A writer’s strike will do that to one’s memory. From what I can gather, the show was never as great as its pilot, but it was still very entertaining. How can a pie maker who can bring people back from the dead (with consequences!) not be entertaining? There’s also his irrepressible love interest, Chuck, the would-be GF were it not for her one-touch-away-from-death plot twist (bad pie maker, bad!). Cutesy Chuck’s darling outlook is almost as eye-catching as Kristin Chenoweth’s guilty performance. All in all, a winning who-dun-it caper with a charming, whimsical, rainbowy background. The fever, catch it!
South Park (10:00, Comedy Central)
It’s South Park! Cartman will feed you your parents in a bowl! Cartman’s hand will “make out” with Ben Affleck’s pants! BUTTERS!!!!!!
In Spring, we get LOST in this timeslot, so for now, the waiting game we must play. Poor, poor Jeremy Bentham…
Smallville (8:00, The CW)
Lana Lang, Lex Luthor, and Supergirl are gone. What the hell? Look how many people they’ve offed. Only THREE regulars remain. From what I can tell, this eighth season will see the rise in “friendship” between Lois Lane and Clark Kent (finally). Did I want to know that? No. You try ignoring TVGuide.com’s daily newsletters. Like termites, they is! Beyond that, same ol’, same ol’ with The Man Of Tomorrow. After so many years (I began watching it on premiere night in the 10th grade), you would think it would have lost its luster, but no, it only gets better. However, I did lose my wish to marry Chloe. Only slightly, only slightly.
My Name Is Earl (8:00, NBC)
More often than not, I miss Earl and the gang, but when I do catch him, it’s good stuff. Except when he’s in jail. Or in a coma. Get back on track, guys. Oh, and give the Yes, Dear alums more face time. It’s what Crab Man would want.
Kath & Kim (8:30, NBC)
It’s part of NBC’s comedy block, so I’ma catch it in spite of knowing zilch about it. The clincher? Selma Blair’s stomach.
The Office (9:00, NBC)
Everyone watches The Office, so why delve into the nuances of TV’s most visible comedy? (Two and a Half Men is still TV’s most watched sitcom, I don’t know why…) It’s still funny, in spite of reaching LCD viewers. (Don’t know what LCD stands for? Thanks for proving my point.) In spite of cast shakeups, it’s still the same at its core: Dwight is Dwight, Michael is the boss I dearly wish I could have, and Jim is still shrugging every two minutes. Sure, Jam (Jim + Pam) have become a “couple,” ugh, as of late, forfeiting the show’s emotional core, but they’re still good. I guess…I wish they would bring back Rashida Jones. She was sex on sticks.
30 Rock (9:30, NBC)
TV’s huzzah laffer, 30 Rock is the show you wish you could be a part of. The cast seems so cohesive, and yet so disjointed. Tina Fey is the coolest lady on TV (sorry, Ms. Arnett), and she demonstrated that she is a lot more than just one of the many Weekend Update anchors (in yo’ mouf, Norm McDonald!). How can people not be watching this celebrated nonsense? You have Alec Baldwin and his irreverent smirk; Katrina Bowden’s occasional smoldering appearances; Kenneth the slapjaw bumpkin; Jane Krakowski’s prima donna fluffiness (she was hott as Betty in the second Flintstones flick); a veritable host of cartoony guest stars; and Tracy Morgan as Tracy Jordan, the wackiest caricature on primetime since Steven Q. Urkel…maybe. Hey, he did “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah” — boys becoming men, men becoming wolves! Choke on that link alone, slapnuts.
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia (10:00, FX)
Without a doubt, the sunniest funniest show on TV. The premise is gold: four friends and a dysfunky father (Danny DeVito!) own a bar in the home of my Philly Cheesesteak. That’s it. That is all you need for the funniest thing since Arrested Development. In its fourth season, this politically maladjusted riot always finds a way to poke fun of the most taboo of things. Raped by a gay black man? Only in the pilot. Take advantage of pro life manifestations to get with a hott right-winger? Why not! Find a baby in the dumpster and utilize it to make big bucks? Do it! Serve high schoolers alcohol, crash their parties, and show up to their prom? I would, too! Afraid of the phrase “Jew”? I know I am — it is a hard J.
Last season’s epic epitome of awesomeness occurred when the gang made a band. Naturally, Charlie “penned” his lyrics about getting raped by Night Man. And then came New Wave-tinged “Day Man”: “Day Man, uh-ah-ahh! Fighter of the Night Man, uh-ah-ahh! Champion of the sun, uh-ah-ahh! Master of karate and friendship for everyone!” Synchronised clapping and glam-Bowie duds? Only in a show where DeVito lays your lifelong crush. If you are ready to experience sexual magic, then click on LINK and LINK.
What’s the deal with Fridays and Saturdays? You have SNL. Maybe.
The Simpsons (8:00, FOX)
Twenty seasons later, the yellow clan keeps on trucking (as if they would ever want to stop trucking). Will it ever find its series finale? Well, Matt Groening was thinking about adding a seventh helipad to his puppy’s house…
King of the Hill (8:30, FOX)
So is Sunday the end of the week or the beginning? I hate Sundays. The day of foreboding…KotH has amazing longevity. I can’t figure out what’s keeping this seldom mentioned animated comedy alive, but it’s a sure bet that it’s people like me who enjoy a pleasant, under-the-radar satire. Also, there’s a half-hour wait between The Simpsons and Family Guy…
Family Guy (9:00, FOX)
Lucky there’s a family guy — or else Seth MacFarlane wouldn’t have $100 million to spend on covering up all of the hooker deaths he’s caused. Did you know that MacFarlane (creator, voice of Peter, Brian, and Stewie) was supposed to be on one of the planes that crashed on 9/11? Pretty surreal to think that alcoholism could save a life. As for the show itself, it still gets by on zany manatee gags and references to 1980s pop culture. This season should give us the sequel to “Blue Harvest” — just think, an hourlong Empire Strikes Back parody with Ernie the Giant Chicken as Boba Fett and Ollie Williams as Lando Calrissian (“Cloud City’s pretty!”).
American Dad (9:30, FOX)
Family Guy‘s unfunny step-brother. Oh, and there’s an effeminate alien. Voila! A nutshell!
Entourage (10:00, HBO)
I don’t have HBO anymore, but when I do catch the Jersey boys in their fifth season OnDemand, it’s sure to be a fun ride teeming with envy and more envy. I so wish I could be those guys. You have Vince Chase, the nascent, somewhat vapid ex-Aquaman in groovy search for Hollywood immortality. He’s in bed with a different girl every night, and when it’s Mandy Moore or Carla Gugino (ahem), well, one can only take notice. His second is Erik (or E), a no-nonsense manager with a firm grasp on reality, even though he can never get his love life in check. Turtle is the crew’s driver, a Jersey boy in big clothes with questionable baggies full of fun. Johnny Drama is Vinnie’s older washed-up actor of a brother, and his antics are just awesomeness with a goatee. Lastly, you have Jeremy Piven as the riotous agent Ari Gold, the foulest mouth on TV today. When he’s not telling E to go downtown on himself, he’s chastising his whimsically gay assistant to…well, you get the idea. Entourage is not heavy on the funny, but it does bring entertainment by the assload. It’s only a plus when you see Harvey Weinstein going off about mutilating wee Erik. My wish for this season? Keep eccentric director Walsh around. He made a film that bombed at Cannes — will he kill himself? Or just Erik?
So there you is, jerkwads and homeboys, my flimsy excuse to post images of gorgeous women tentative Fall schedule. The midseason slate should inject some fresh blood into the sked with Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse (Eliza Dushku was brewed in a sex cauldron). We also wait patiently for LOST, the greatest drama in the history of TV (after all, it gave us beachside Evangeline Lily). That show always manages to blow your mind every two seconds. I’ve literally screamed out in astonishment while watching it. Lastly, I alone shall anticipate the devilish return of Reaper, which was this close to getting the ax last season. It’s a very decent show about the nerdy boyfriend from Grounded For Life acting as Satan’s bounty hunter. Michael Ian Black as a gay demon? All bets are off!
Too bad I already featured a-ha’s “The Sun Always Shines On TV” some weeks ago…
Oh, wait! There’s always 2oo3’s “The Sun Always Shines On TV (Live)” from the live album How Can I Sleep With Your Voice In My Head! I is a genius!
How Can I Sleep With Your Voice In My Head was actually the first a-ha anything I ever purchased. 2oo3 was when I became an aficionado, so serendipitous FTWs all around. The live highlights include the “Did Anyone Approach You,” the awesomely-extended “Take On Me,” the sing-alongs in “Hunting High And Low” and “The Living Daylights,” and this little number, the live version of what is arguably a-ha’s greatest effort. “The Sun Always Shines On TV” — doesn’t get any much better than that, folks.
Well, this is some B.S. Again. The music video is online, but no embedding allowed. I mean, what the hell’s the damn point, then? Whatever, I wanted you all to experience sexual magic this awfully good musvid, so I took the liberty of uploading it myself. Go on. I even edited to my own liking (I am a professional video editor, after all*), so if you’re not even an a-ha fan (wtf), you should watch it anyway. It’s de butters. Your applause and admiration is most welcome.
*You can sample a bit of my work at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I-S-4i5aM-Y — I make a cameo somewhere, starting at the eight-minute mark!
So here it is, the live music video (that I uploaded, modified) of the song U2 ripped off. I honored it with my band name, so it must be resplendent. Greatest. Song. Evar.