Friday, September 23, 2005

Actual AIM conversation mere moments ago between myself and Bill:

Joe: sadly i haven't had time for anyone's blog lately
Joe: including mine
Bill: law school will do that to you
Joe: no law school's fine; Tivo will do that to you
So the truth is out--my neglect has something to do with classes and interviews, but mostly it's all about the fact thatthe weekend before classes started, my ex-roommate convinced me that going from TV-lessness to TV+Tivo was a good way to transition from 1L to 2L. I regret nothing, but like my freshman advisor told me about Usenet newsgroups, it is a sinkhole for time.

So since I have little else to write about, here are my reviews of things I've Tivo'ed recently:

The Daily Show: A staple. Evolution, Schmevolution week was tremendous, highlighted by Kurt Vonnegut's tongue-in-cheek argument that nothing but intelligent design could have brought about "giraffes, hippopotami, and the clap." If I had any one complaint, it would be that Tivo considers all 5 daily airings a "First run" episode, so I had to manually set up daily taping of the 11 p.m. showing, instead of "Season Pass"ing 20 episodes a week. But now I know how to manually set up daily taping, so good times.

Too Late w/ Adam Carolla: The single most devastating time-sinkhole development out of all of this was Adam Carolla getting his own show at almost exactly the same time I got Tivo. I could watch Carolla read the phone book--I think he's the funniest person in entertainment, period, end of story. I'm worried about the show, though. They've alread moved it back to midnight, and it runs the risk of simultaneously being too Coastal and yet too offensive to much of the lefty Daily Show audience. This week was even more problematic, as Adam brought on Jimmy Kimmel for an episode that was nothing by Man Show reminiscence, then he dropped the live studio audience on Tuesday, and Wednesday he had the guest (The Donnas) out for the whole episode with no monologue and brought out the old Loveline "Germany or Florida?" bit. Format and timeslot changes in month 2 generally do not bode well. The real problem in my mind is that Adam needs a straight-man; the callers perform that function somewhat during phone-in segments, but without a Drew or Jimmy, Adam's strength (off-the-cuff reaction to banter) is missing. Still, I'll watch every episode until it sadly disappears.

Arrested Development: The season premiere was just, I mean, my God, why doesn't everyone watch this show? So many levels! And watching certain details a second time on Tivo reveals more levels, such as Eve Holt's yearbook nickname being "Eve Holt." And I've really been enjoying I'm Oscar. (Dot com.)

The Swinger (1966): I Tivo'ed this movie from AMC on the principle that there's hot, there's really hot, and there's Ann-Margret in the mid-1960s. I pinpointed the extent of this movie's charms very precisely.

NFL Matchup: Jaws and Merril, great stuff. Have they mentioned that they're the only show that shows the coach's tape? Other than that reminder 10 times per episode, this is must-see TV for the NFL fan who wants to see what's really going on in the game.

How I Met Your Mother: This is a gimmicky, somewhat-enjoyable sitcom. It appeals to both stoners who loved Evil Doogie in Harold & Kumar, and geeks who haven't gotten over their Willow crush. I'll keep watching for a few more weeks to see if N.P. Harris keeps saying things like, "Lebanese is the new half-Asian."

Out of Practice
: Another CBS Monday sitcom, this one starring Henry Winkler, Stockard Channing, and 3 people you've seen but don't know the names of. They're a family where the youngest son is a marriage counselor, and both parents and his older sister and brother are doctors. In the pilot, the marriage counselor's wife (ironically!) leaves him. Zany. The fact that there are 4 Dr. Barneses has the potential for numerous comic misunderstandings. It probably has one more episode to get funny before I dump it.

The Office: With Scrubs temporarily on hiatus, this is the only show I've seen that can compete with Arrested Development for funniest out there. Routinely makes me laugh out loud, and the Dundie Awards this week killed me, because I worked in an office once that did that (once, not annually, but still) and it was a total disaster.

I'm open to suggestions of shows I should be watching, but please don't tell me Desperate Housewives, Lost, and House. I know people love these shows, but the chances I'm adding an hourlong show where I have a whole season to catch up on are slim. Also, no HBO, so don't go there either.

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