Tuesday, September 02, 2008

CW Fall TV Preview

We are carrying on with the 2008 Fall TV preview posts here on WWYG?! Last night I wrote about NBC. Tonight, I am swinging over to the CW, but I'll admit that I should have done this network first, because it is going all out this year and committing itself to quality programming in ways that you just wouldn't believe!

Case in point . . . 90210! It's 2 hour premiere is going on right now as I type . . . but by the time you read this, it'll all be over and you will curse yourself for missing the chance of a lifetime to see a show as great as that in it's Second Coming. Plus, have you heard? Shannon Daugherty is TOTALLY coming back for a few episodes! And OMG! she and Jennie Garth are getting along just great and isn't that awesome!

So, yeah . . . 90210 is back. I didn't care about it the first time around and so I care even less about this incarnation. It doesn't really matter to me how pretty all the actors are--and I have seen that they are very, very pretty. It just seems like this might have been a bigger deal if we hadn't already seen The OC come and go and weren't currently living through Gossip Girl.

But, let's break things down by day, shall we?

Monday: Speaking of Gossip Girl, [9/1 @ 8 pm] it's back on again for the Fall and premiered last night. I haven't watched the show, though some people have tried to tell me that I would like it. I am not entirely sure why that would be the case. I know that originally I think the plot involved a rich kid anonymously blogging about her equally rich friends to much scandal, but I wouldn't doubt that that plot thread faded away and now I suspect it more resembles MTV's The Hills or some other show about rich people (did I mention that 90210 is also on this network?). I'm sure it's a well put-together show and I do like one of the stars (Blake Lively) a bit, but I don't think I'll be tuning in. Sorry.

As to what else is on The CW on Mondays . . . it's One Tree Hill [9/1 @ 9 pm]. This show used to be about basketball, right? I have never watched even one minute of the show over its . . . how many years? . . . two, three . . . ahh, who cares. It's probably just another excuse for pretty Caucasians to sit around and scheme about how they are going to steal each other's significant others.

Tuesday: This is, as I mentioned at the top, the night for 90210 [9/2 @ 8 pm]. But how good can the show be if it has slipped from 3rd rate, maybe 4th rate network FOX (home of the original show) to the even more tenuous CW network? Nothing on the CW inspires much confidence, so I can't say I'll hold high hopes for this show, no matter how many alumnus they drag out of renewed obscurity to pump up the ratings. I am sure Ian Ziering has got nothing better to do, but Jason Priestly and even--god help us all--Luke Perry can probably find more appealing ways to spend their middle-ages now, right?

And let's now forget the "reason for being" of the CW network! Showcasing the lives of the rich, powerful, and vapid. This is reinforced by the OTHER show the network trots out on Tuesday, appropriately titled Privileged [9/9 @ 9 pm]. What is this show about? Well, imagine an earnest, well-meaning young college journalist major that is "taking her lumps" working at a tabloid. She loses her job and manages to swing her way into being the live-in tutor for snooty high schoolers who live in Palm Beach. Can the earnest journalist remain true to herself while trying to enrich the lives of the vapid and also not be seduced by the hot boys and easy living lifestyle of the too rich and not famous? Tune in next Tuesday night to find out!

Wednesday: Midweek on The CW means America's Next Top Model [9/3 @ 8 pm; a 2-hr premiere]. For this, the eleventh cycle of the show, Tyra and Company take a group of homely girls under their wing and get them to realize that beauty isn't important. Instead, the ANTM crew heads into the mean streets of Chicago to volunteer in soup kitchens, pick up trash, and scrap the gum from under the audience chairs at Tyra's talk show.

(Did you believe any of that?)

In actual fact, the latest group of model hopefuls might indeed do the things I mentioned, but only if that was the inane subject of the latest photo set up . . . and preferable if these things could be mimicked while being dangled fifteen feet up in the air.

The other Wednesday night show, Stylista [10/22 @ 9 pm] is a reality show about people competing to get an internship at Elle Magazine. So, if you've seen the movie The Devil Wears Prada, but what you REALLY wanted to see was the video tapes of the casting director for that movie, then this show is right up your alley.

Thursday: If it's Thursday and its the CW, then it must be Smallville [9/18 @ 8 pm]. Yep, the show that no one can believe is still on the air is back on the air again! Clark still doesn't fly; he refuses to see that Chloe is the only person in town worthy of his romantic attention; Lex is marching ever closer to Ultimate Evil; Lois is still annoying as ever, and Lana is dead? I don't even remember what is up with her. I just know that I want it over with. I have invested years of my life in this show and its a habit that I just can't break at this point. I must see it to it's conclusion . . . it's grim, joyless, unfulfilling conclusion.

Supernatural [9/18 @ 9 pm] is also back for another year. Once more I'll say that you would expect me to like a show about demon hunters, vampires, various occult stuff that could (if done better with a more interesting cast of characters) remind me more of Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel. But this show doesn't rise to that level of quality, so I don't bother. I'm sure there is a rabid fan base for the show that just got reenergized at Comic Con, but I'll eat my Smallville gruel and move on.

Friday: Friday Night Smackdown. Ugh.

Saturday: local programming

Sunday: Encores of shows done earlier in the week. Pretty pathetic. Except that on 9/21 all hell breaks loose with three new shows--In Harm's Way [9/21 @ 7 pm], Valentine [9/21 @ 8 pm], and Easy Money [9/21 @ 9 pm]. One show is about Greek gods trying to keep their identity secret while matching people up. Another is about ordinary people doing treacherous stuff for a living. And the third is about a family of loan sharks and the one upright son that wants to run the family biz legit. I'll let you sort out which description fits which show. And you also have to guess which show features the always delightful Judge Rheinhold!

So, 90210 . . . this is your network. It can barely put together four weekdays of prime time programming. And you are going to be its salvation? I say good luck to you. And I'll also say that there are several shows listed on the CW website as Coming Soon--all in early October it appears. These shows will not be dealt with in great detail, because they are desperate back ups for equally desperate cannon fodder going out now. But I do note with interest the presence of Bob Saget in one show, Surviving Suburbia [midseason arrival date unknown], because it sounds like he is mimicking the Kevin Spacey role in American Beauty. And we all now know what a horn dog smut head Saget really is, so maybe this is playing more to type?

Another night down, another network excoriated. Tomorrow . . . maybe FOX?


David said...

Something else I didn't mention about the contestant model/hopefuls in America's Next Top Model? They're also as odd and weird as Ms. Tyra herself. According to Entertainment Weekly, this group includes a "gawky French girl, a figure skater who was nearly sold to Saudi Arabians, and the pre-op transgender Isis, who enjoys the phrase ''born in the wrong body.""


Anonymous said...

i think i'm done with ANTM. i boycotted it last year and was no less fierce for it. tho the pre-op'er has me really intrigued.

and you seem pretty harsh on the CW, but they DO seem to have more original (non-reality) programming than most other networks. and don't forget TMZ.

David said...

I don't think I'm "that" much worse on the CW. They might put together a greater number of shows, but they all seem cut from the same 90210/One Tree Hill/Priviledged mold.

Smallville seemed unique once upon a time, but the creativity just sort of leaked out as the years ossified the cast and crew.