Elle2’s Week in Review

This will be fairly short and fairly quiet.  Weekly reviews are my least favorite thing to write, thus I am no longer doing them.  I do like to comment here and there on shows I watch, and this is what this week’s article will be:  a comment here and there.  I actually wrote this over a week ago, but am late getting it done and off to Alice, so my ‘news’ is now fairly old.

First up, some big, or not so big, news at the CW.  America’s Next Top Model is done after this current cycle.  I’ll admit, this show was for me, at least a few years ago, a bit of a guilty pleasure.  I stopped watching it when it did the college cycle and then the British invasion and now the current phase it’s in of guys and girls.  I caught all its earlier cycles from 1 through, I think, All Stars (whatever season that was) mostly in syndication, although the All Stars I did catch as it aired.

With ANTM done, Supernatural is now the network’s longest running series, and the only remaining standard from the UPN days.  Bye Tyra.  While the modeling industry and all that goes with it is nothing I care about, it was fun watching the various costumes and makeup creations as well as watching the contestants perform their photoshoots and the weekly challenges.  Like I said, it was a guilty pleasure for a time.  Its time was up a few years ago for me, and now the CW as well.  It came, it did its job, and now it’s ending.

Some other big news, to me at least, is the amazingly poor ratings going on in so many places.  Almost everything is down.  I have no idea if online access is what is behind all the dropping ratings, and viewers, but something certainly is going on.  Empire is losing anywhere from .4 to .5 of a rating point in the highly coveted 18-49 demographic on a weekly basis – well, this week it stabilized with last week, and The Big Bang Theory and NCIS are not the powerhouse ratings draws they have been.  Even splashy new shows make waves if they come in with a 2.0 or even a 1.9 and are considered hits.  Blindspot cracked a 3.0 with its premiere now is falling rapidly in the middle 2.0’s with nowhere to go but down, or perhaps stabilize, and The Blacklist, a massive hit just two seasons ago, is now the mid-1.0’s.

In fact, looking at TVBTN’s weekly Renew/Cancel standing (another guilty pleasure of mine) I was surprised to find that Limitless is currently listed as “should get a second season.”  Not only am I bored with that show, after three viewings – and I tried to like it; I did – but its ratings are not that great.  This past week it drew a 1.4 and 8.1 in viewers.  Granted, Person of Interest finished last season at a 1.1 with 8.21 in viewers, but that was after four seasons.  Limitless in its first four episodes is right in line with PoI’s numbers.  Not a good showing for a freshman series.

I compare the two only for this reason, the two aired in the same time slot.  If CBS was hoping to increase their ad revenue with Limitless, that looks to be a failed venture.  However, when one considers that CBS owns Limitless, and not PoI, one can see the attraction.  Still, Limitless should be limited; it’s just not cutting it in either demo or viewers, and while Colin Salmon’s welcome appearance at the end of episode 3 had me sit up and take notice (so underutilized on Arrow and now forgotten), it’s not enough to bring me back again.

That’s where TVBTN’s weekly Renew/Cancel standing gets interesting, as well as worrisome, I would think, for a network executive.  The reason Limitless looks likely for a second season is because eight other dramas are so much worse:  NCIS:New Orleans, Blue Bloods, Madam Secretary, Code Black, The Good Wife, NCIS:Los Angeles, Hawaii Five-O, CSI:Cyber.  Some of those shows are already sold into lucrative syndication deals, some of those shows, by virtue of the franchise they are a part of, are likely to get decent syndication deals, if not here, then internationally, and some of those shows just need to go away, quickly.  But, looking at CBS’s stable of dramas, only Criminal Minds, in its 11th season, Scorpion, in its second season, and NCIS, in its 12th season, are doing better than Limitless.  Their two hit dramas, with likely lucrative syndication deals, NCIS and Criminal Minds, are very expensive as well as very long running.  A year, two, at most three left for those shows and there is nothing even close to a hit on the network.  Scorpion, as much fun as it can be, is truly quite silly in the action department, so much so that I often cringe.  The cast is great though, and that is a draw, but how long that can maintain viewers remains to be seen.

I said in an earlier article that television is quite cyclical for me, and CBS is rapidly cycling out of my interest.  With PoI likely ending its run on CBS when the 13 ordered and in the process of filming episodes airing, likely early in 2016, CBS will have only Elementary that I have any interest in, and even that is no powerhouse for viewers in and out of the demo.  Too bad, too, for Lucy Liu and Johnny Lee Miller are superb!  Thankfully that show is owned by CBS, and already sold into syndication – and now airing, so it is likely to have a few more seasons, especially with so many other shows doing so poorly.  CBS needs some fresh blood, and not just a fresh cast and a fresh city recycling the same old show.  They must be hoping Supergirl is a big, big draw that continues to grow.  I don’t see it though, and I’ll not be checking it out either.  The promos hold no interest for me at all.

Good think I’m repainting much of my home this winter, at least I’ll have something to do these long boring nights.  Hurry up, Grimm.  I need something on my Friday nights, and at least the Librarians is almost here as well.  Things are looking up with November fast approaching.

Until next time, which hopefully will be a bit more cheery, thanks for reading, Elle2

Alice’s Week in Review

I swore this week would be “catching up with the DVR” week.  That kind of fizzled.  I too am already feeling the “TV Doldrums.”  Too much on, not enough selection that’s truly inticing.  It all kind of blends together after a while!  I still have a growing amount of Heroes Reborn, The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Sleepy Hollow, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (I’m determined to give that show a try), and Gotham filling up the DVR.  I’m at least keeping up with my “must watch” shows Arrow, The Flash, Supernatural, and The Big Bang Theory.  I’m really impressed by that.  

I did catch up with two shows on the DVR this week though, The Muppets and Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  I would say that one is delivering rather well, one is not.  Let’s start with the not.  I really, really wanted The Muppets to work, but it’s awful.  Sure, there are bits that did work, like Miss Piggy’s “Code Red” and the Bear managing to selling out his daughter’s entire stock of girl scout cookies to the Electric Mayhem, but the rest is borderline unwatchable.  Miss Piggy in a romance with Josh Groban?  Fozzie Bear acting all awkward with Jay Leno?  Gonzo using Liam Hemsworth as a way to pick up chicks?  Ugh.   

Lawerence Fishburne, you summed up my thoughts exactly when you were taunting Kermit the Frog on the backlot.  “I had a rough night last night…because I watched your show.  It sucked!”  Talk about hitting a little too close to home.  I’m afraid The Muppets will be off my DVR season pass very soon. 


However, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. continues to light things up.  First off, I’m so happy they brought back Peter MacNichol as Professor Randolph.  Hiding in a Norweigan prison?  That was clever.  His contribution to the story, a Raiders of the Lost Ark type affair, was actually quite valuable.  That story could have easily fallen off the rails with it’s “Frankenstein” type sci-fi setup.  It worked though, because I was engrossed in how it would all play out.  I predicted that an unbalance Fitz would jump into the hole like that, but it was still damned exciting to watch as he pulled Simmons from the other side.  I figured they would drag that out a lot longer.  Oh, but then it turns out I was right next episode when Simmons was caught trying to devise a way to go back.  I’m really glad they’re not dropping what happened to her.  And yes, I thought the romance dinner between Fitz and Simmons was great.  Sure it was awkward, but it turned out to be a big cathartic moment for both of them.  When these two are together, sparks fly.  

The rest of episode three fizzled a bit for me though.  The whole chase for Lincoln had a few twists that made little sense to me.  Why would Coulson make that deal with Rosalind?  It didn’t add up.  The entire search for Lincoln was rather clunky and pointless in a way.  I really like Lincoln, but what exactly is he resisting?  Why are we chewing scenery with his resistence?  I did love though the payoff, which was a closing scene between Daisy/Skye and Mack playing video games on the couch.  At least they’re looking out for each other, no matter what strange thing happens.  I do recognize this is all to move the Inhuman plot bunny along, but they decided to give the poor little fellow a rest in “A Wanted (Inhu) Man.” 

I’m also not feeling Hunter’s mission to take down Ward either.  It was nice to see Agent May come back, but their plot was a snoozer.  Also, I was less than impressed with our first Grant Ward citing.  He didn’t get to do much other than be a heartless jerk (you know, typical Ward).  I haven’t seen episode 3.04 yet though, so maybe that will improve.  He really needs more time and hopefully they’re building up to that.  

That’s my take on the week!  Hopefully by next week I’ll have cleaned up the DVR a lot more.  Or maybe pigs will fly.  Both are remote possibilities.  

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