Tune In/Tune Out: March 30-April 6, 2014

Welp. I’m watching something now that’s pretty fun, but it’ll have to wait till next week’s installment. In the meantime, anger about a certain series finale aside, there was actually a lot to watch this week. Onto the picks! (For some reason, I wanted to put ‘tally ho’ just now, but I’m going to ignore that urge.)

TUNE IN

 

The Walking Dead: The finale was amazing, and kept the audience at the end of their seats. It is great to see about 84 percent of the group coming back together, but it still leaves so many questions to be answered in season five. I can’t wait to see what stuff and things happen in season five.  – Becca

NCIS: The second half of the backdoor pilot for the bayou-flavored spin-off could have fallen completely flat, but it managed to do two important things in the space of an hour. It successfully built a world for the spin-off to inhabit, and it set forth an interesting ongoing mystery to give the real pilot (presumably next fall) something to draw from when it gets going. – Moff

The Mindy Project: It’s back in a big way, and it’s better than ever. Next week also promises two new episodes, so catch up while you still can! –Kerry

Grimm: SO MANY THINGS ARE HAPPENING. It’s terribly tempting to draw comparisons between this show and ABC’s own fairytale-inspired Once Upon a Time, but it’s ultimately unfair. NBC’s show has successfully built a reputation for compelling storytelling, moments of jump-in-your-seat, and awkward humor, and this week’s episode managed to set up a breakneck race to the season finale. – Moff

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: The show gave me a pretty good idea on what would be happening with Captain America: Winter Soldier when I watched it. The episode was intense, and left you constantly questioning who you could trust. – Becca

 

TUNE OUT

How I Met Your Mother: This is probably unfair, since I literally tuned out of the series finale, but it effectively ruined the mythology of the entire show. It deserved a better ending than that. –Kerry

 

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Tune In/Tune Out: March 2-9, 2014

Geez. OK, well so much for the rerun hinterlands of March. ABC has been packing in a string of high-profile episodes and premiering several new series, while other networks have been slipping in new episodes, considering they no longer have to contend with the Winter Olympics. And, as Kerry said earlier today, “so many duds, so many great ones.” Let’s cut to the chase, shall we?

TUNE IN

NCIS: I’m a fan of Robert Wagner’s portrayal of Anthony DiNozzo, Sr., mainly because he often serves as comic relief. But I especially liked his guest spot in this week’s episode because his reason for being in town put his son’s new-found enlightenment to the test. – Moff

Brooklyn Nine Nine: I love when this show gets to be action-y, and the tactical village was a really cool way to see the characters in a true police setting. Jake seemed primed to take a big step forward with Amy, only to be beaten to the punch, while Rosa finally found out the true reason Boyle didn’t invite her to his wedding. I never thought I’d say this about this show, but it looks like we’re ramping up for an emotional conclusion to the season! (And congrats to this show and <i>The Mindy Project</i> on their renewals!) –Kerry

Trophy Wife: Two words: Bert Day. It’s as amazing as it sounds. –Kerry

Joe Punjsd

You know the rhyme.

Community: Visually, it was weird, and the story was a lot more depressing than it seemed on the surface, but it was still a fantastic episode. It left me really excited to see where the rest of the season is going. – Moff

Lereyo

How have we never had an ‘Andy = Kool-Aid guy’ joke before now?

Parks and Recreation: Ron Swanson hangs out with his newborn son for the entire episode, a swarm of bees attacks mostly Eagletonians, and everyone is insanely quotable. (“Hey Ron, cool baby.”) –Kerry

Elementary Gifed

So many dirty jokes, so little time.

Elementary: If you don’t tune in just to see roosters hanging out in the Brownstone, then maybe the case of the week, which is twisty with a weird conclusion, will appeal to you. Ears to you! –Kerry

Sherlocked Mind Palace

Arrow: Comes for the abs, stay for the acting

Arrow: Slade Wilson hangs out at the Queen mansion, freaking out Oliver as he charms his mother and sister, while back on the island, Oliver goes and lets the bad guy monologue. Never let the bad guy monologue! But it still made for a seriously good hour of television. –Kerry

Multiprises

And this drawing is actually *less* creepy.

Grimm: We got a little bit of the larger, Royal-related arc, and we got a creepy new creature. And Sgt. Wu finally got a first name and some back story! Of course, it didn’t end particularly well for him, but it’s been a long time coming. – Moff

TUNE OUT

How I Met Your Mother: this week’s episode made me regret recommending this show to everyone who would listen. Even if the show ends with a miraculous (spoiler), the entire narrative of the show has been cheapened. My instinct is to tune out the show for the rest of the series, but curiosity may get the better of me. –Kerry

Suits: The stakes have never been more… the same as ever. Louis re-realized Mike was a fraud, Rachel walked around two apartments in lingerie, and Harvey bickered with Scotty over her contract and buy-in at Pearson Specter. The episode <i>is</i> worth the precious few scenes we get of Donna and Jessica (they both get two separate scenes, each) but since it amounts to about seven minutes of screentime, just skip this one. Maybe tune in next week, though it’s possible nothing will happen then, either. –Kerry

About a Boy: I really wanted to like this show, because the premise is right up my alley. The kid is unbelievably cute and hits all his marks like a veteran, but there’s still something missing from the show as a whole. While the pilot was fine, I didn’t expect the second episode to be so formulaic (guy doesn’t want to watch kid, kid really likes guy, guy has to watch kid, guy takes kid to grown-up party, guy neglects kid, guy learns exact same lesson he just learned in the pilot) and the whole thing ended up feeling flat to me. Hopefully the third episode’s the charm! –Kerry

Tune In / Tune Out: Jan. 26 – Feb. 2, 2014

I’d be lying if I said we three of WWFTP weren’t spending some portion of this Sunday watching the Seattle Seahawks take on the Denver Broncos at MetLife Stadium in Jersey City, New Jersey. I grew up in Seattle (Well, in one of the suburbs, anyway.) and Kerry has a familial connection to Washington state, so interpret our allegiances as you will. Still, a week of TV can’t be watched in a day, so here are our picks for the shows that ran for the end zone this week, and the ones that came up short.

TUNE IN

How I Met Your Mother: Finally, an episode worth watching! The story of “How Your Mother Met Me” was so reminiscent of the first three seasons of this once-great show that one has to wonder why she didn’t get more material in this final season. In only 22 minutes, she managed to capture our hearts with her cheeriness, grief, and perfect-for-Ted quirkiness (she made her breakfast food sing showtunes!) Here’s hoping we see more of her before the finale! — Kerry

Bones: Sometimes, introducing a heretofore secret sibling is a desperate attempt to reignite interest. Just think of all the times characters had babies on sitcoms because the existing kids were aging out of their cute/funny or high school years. But this episode was heart-breaking and sweet, and the introduction of Hodgin’s brother gave all the characters a chance to show their best selves. – Moff

Enlisted: Keith David continues to steal all of his scenes, and we got to see more of the squadron as they faced off against the Marines in a flag football game. The brothers share a very sweet storyline about surprise homecomings between fathers and sons, and Pete runs around in a ridiculous half-shirt for most of the episode. –Kerry

Community: A slightly weird structure aside, there were so many things to love about this episode. And who doesn’t love a chance to Fat Dog for Mid-terms? – Moff

Elementary: I really liked how the non-case part of this episode focused on Sherlock being a sponsor, and seeing him deal with that. – Becca

TUNE OUT

Nothing from us this week. There were episodes that were only so-so, and there were an awful lot of reruns this week, but nothing that felt like a complete waste of time. And the second quarter started a couple minutes ago, so excuse me while I go pay more attention to football than I do the rest of the year. (GO SEAHAWKS! LOUDER!)

Tune In / Tune Out: Jan. 12-19, 2014

Welp. Here we are: Another week, another batch of episodes behind us. As I put together our picks for ‘Most Likely to be Rewatched’ and ‘Most Likely to be Forgotten Until We See It Listed On the DVD,’ I’m watching the NFC Championship game, and holding out hope my hometown team will come back from their slow start and finish strong. (Typing with crossed fingers is tough, folks, but it’s worth it if the Seahawks make it to the Super Bowl.) And so, without further ado, here are our thoughts on the week just ended.

TUNE IN

Natalie Morales

Trophy Wife: Jackie and Pete had to work together in order to spend a day with Bert, while Kate finally had to learn how to be a parent capable of discipline. It’s so great to watch these characters evolve. –Kerry

[h/t to our Trophy Wife guest blogger, Mary, for the GIF and for saving me from the #trophy wife tag on Tumblr. Geez. – M]

 

Brooklyn Nine Nine: I’m only a casual fan of Jake/Amy, but I think I can turn into a real fan if they use this episode as an endpoint to the “children on a playground” trope. Boyle’s one scene with Rosa was great, but my favorite was Captain Holt, who couldn’t seem to stop putting his foot in his mouth. –Kerry

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: I love that this episode took us back to Jemma’s and Fitz’s academy, and having Bucky Barnes’ name on the memorial wall was icing on the cake. – Becca

Psych: We got some great character growth for Lassiter! It came at the cost of dealing with an annoying police chief, but at least this sets up a good arc for the former head detective. Here’s hoping we’ll be rid of Trout soon… I miss Chief Vick. –Kerry

Downton Abbey: After a plodding season premiere (episodes 1 and 2), the third episode had the more familiar pacing of earlier seasons. Of course, it also had an emotional wallop that I’m still unsure was necessary, though it certainly made for a couple compelling performances on the part of Joanne Froggatt and Phyllis Logan. – Moff

Modern Family: I mostly watch this show out of habit, late on Wednesday nights after I’ve watched all my other shows, but I was surprised and pleased at the storyline for Alex in this week’s episode. Her character is frequently pigeonholed as a straight-man foil to the antics of her siblings and cousins, so it was nice to see that she has her own set of issues, and that when she’s on her own, she’s actually an appealing character to watch. –Kerry

The Crazy Ones: I haven’t been watching this freshman series as regularly as I might have – and I’m not happy CBS has seen fit to bump it a half-hour later this week for another helping of, ahem, a certain “sitcom” – but both the A- and B-plots were strong this week, with a clever means of tying them together and another sweet father-daughter moment between Robin Williams’ and Sarah Michelle Gellar’s characters. Plus, Josh Groban with a quasi-mullet and an office/dressing room in a grungy men’s room: What more do I need? – Moff

TUNE OUT

How I Met Your Mother: If you don’t find the blatant stereotyping to be offensive, then you’ll definitely be offended by the lack of payoff… and the lack of storyline… and the lack of anything compelling happening at all. It was all-around the worst episode of the series. Way to besmirch the fourth slap, writers. –Kerry

Person of Interest: As lovely as the denouement was, bringing Mr. Finch and Mr. Reese back together to continue their work, I’ve seen the ‘protect the young tech wizard who’s invented a world-changing Internet thing’ story done better on other shows – and with a more interesting young tech wizard. – Moff

 

Mid-term Report Card: Tune In, Tune Out or Turn Off?

As you may have noticed, we skipped doing our regular Tune In/ Tune Out the last two weeks. We were a little distracted by real life (HALLOWEEN! HOUSE GUESTS!) and movies (THOR 2!) and allergies (Me!), but we also figured with various shows taking one (or both) of the last two weeks off, we would, too.

And while we’ll be back to our regularly scheduled TI/TO this week, we wanted to take the opportunity to share our thoughts on the new and returning series that we’ve been watching this autumn. If you’re anything like us, you plan your watching (or DVR-ing) schedule on a nightly basis, so we’ve grouped our picks by day of the week, not by grade.

Did we miss your favorite? Should we have given a show more than one or two episodes to prove itself? Want to rage against the (mainstream media) machine? Catch us in the comments below, and let us know what you think. Happy channel surfing!

SUNDAY

Lanafanabanana

Regina feels our pain.

Once Upon a Time, ABC, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: C
Kerry: I gave this a D at first, but an average grade is more fitting of the material. The D in my heart just stands for “disappointment” because I wanted it to be so much better.
Becca: Parts of it are very enjoyable, but it feels like they overwhelm us with the Charming family each week. I can see why the majority of the dwarfs are happy to be in peaceful Storybrooke without them. It would also be great if they created a story about Hook by himself, instead of mainly using him as a love interest for Emma
Moff: It’s difficult to make much of an emotional connection when the characters’ only motivation seems to be to move the plot forward. I’d also like the show runners to give their audience a little more credit: We don’t need every character to spell every little thing out for us. (And maybe, if we do, its the story at fault, not the audience’s comprehension.)

Masterpiece Theatre, PBS, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: A/A-
Becca: Masterpiece holds more gems than Downton Abbey and Sherlock. One of those gems is The Paradise, an enjoyable period drama centered around a department store.
Moff: I agree with Becca about The Paradise, which is wrapping up its first season in the U.S. and has already started season two in the U.K. It’s an interesting counterpoint to Mr. Selfridge, and it’s nice to see so much thought going into arranging the last three series Masterpiece has shown – Endeavour, Silk, and Foyle’s War – to carry through themes of self-reliance and the vagaries of sociopolitical scheming, which are also key in The Paradise.

PassionSimonBaker

Serious faces means things are happening.

The Mentalist, CBS, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: B/B-
Moff: As nice as it is to finally see Patrick Jane (and the CBI team) closing in on the elusive killer Red John, I’m left with two questions at the end of every episode in the current arc. First, will Red John really be captured/killed and/or brought to justice this time? Especially as the hunt for him is the impetus behind the whole series? Secondly, isn’t revealing the existence of a massive group of corrupt law enforcement officers who cover for Red John ham-handed at best and, at worst, painting the entire series with a big ‘ol retconning brush? Wouldn’t this reveal have meant more if we’d been given more definitive proof of its existence in previous seasons? C’mon, Show: Let us have an ‘aHA!’ moment at least once.

MONDAY

How I Met Your Mother, CBS, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: C
Kerry: The “bottle season” just isn’t working. I’m not sure how they can get out of this; they’ve pretty much committed to the format for the rest of the series.

Bones, FOX, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: B/B+
Moff: As nice as it is to finally be rid of Pelant, I’m beginning to wonder if this procedural has another full season in it after the current one ends. While there’s always been big, season-spanning arcs (What happened to Brennan’s mom? Who is The Gravedigger? Can they stop the sniper?), the choice to slot the long-anticipated Booth/Brennan wedding in before November sweeps means the last few weeks have felt like the show’s been treading water. I wouldn’t mind seeing Freddie Prinze Jr.’s CIA spook return sooner rather than later, and I’m holding out for a new big mystery or killer to appear sometime this month.

KiaraSnaps

You tell ’em, Captain!

Sleepy Hollow, FOX, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: A
Becca: The best new drama of the year. I enjoy watching the partnership between Ichabod and Abbie (even if I may not ship them). They have an enjoyable partnership, and I value it as much as Sherlock’s and Joan’s on Elementary. The side characters, like Irving, Katrina, and Jenny, are icing on this delectable dessert.
Moff: Agreed. I’ve read several articles that mention how this show “owns its crazy,” and, while I wouldn’t put it that way, it’s nice to see a show actually able to follow through on what’s promised when it asks the audience to suspend disbelief. It reminds me of when I watched The X-Files, except this time Director Skinner is a wry Black guy with better hair and a Twitter account.

Hostages, CBS, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: D

The Blacklist, NBC, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: A-

ErinMoriarty

No banter, no heart. At this point, we’ll settle for slapstick.

Castle, ABC, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: C/D
Kerry: The only thing saving this from a D is the fact that the show and the characters are still salvageable. Something is missing from this show, and the increasingly far-fetched cases are doing nothing to fill the void.
Moff: I gave it a D because I’m disappointed and bewildered. Where’s the banter? Where’s the heart? This isn’t even a case of Moonlighting because even the supporting characters aren’t keeping my interest.

TUESDAY

MARVEL’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., ABC, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: B
Becca: Last week’s episode finally started to show potential in how great this series can turn out to be. Here’s hoping they continue on the path, and that it is not too late for them to be a success.

NCIS, CBS, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: A/B
Moff: It’s tough to keep things interesting after this many years, but even if the cases are a little predictable at this point, the performances are still solid and the writers are still finding new facets of the characters to reveal. It looks like November sweeps will introduce Ziva’s replacement, and while I would have preferred a POC to take Cote de Pablo’s place, at least it’ll be an infusion of fresh blood.

BodieBroadus

Listen to ’em: They’re cops. They know what they’re talking about.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine, FOX, 8:30 p.m. EST. Grade: A/B
Kerry: My favorite new sitcom of the season!

NCIS: LA, CBS, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: B
Moff: I can’t quite put my finger on what’s off this season. It feels like there are a multitude of story threads that were introduced and promptly dropped only for the writers to abruptly remember its existence several episodes later. It’s not entirely disjointed, but there’s a big difference between slow-burn and sloppy story telling.

Not a Tame Lioness

Winky face.

The Mindy Project, FOX, 9:30 p.m. EST. Grade: A
Moff: I’ve only recently started watching season one, but Kerry’s grade for season two has me trying to figure out how antisocial I can be in marathoning what’s left so I can get to the new episodes.

Trophy Wife, ABC, 9:30 p.m. EST. Grade: A/A-
Kerry: It gets better every week. Glad it got a 22-episode order.

FYeah Amy Acker

Prisoner or guard? Only The Machine really knows.

Person of Interest, CBS, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: A/A+
Becca: The show is firing on all cylinders, and they have one of the best, enjoyable casts. Amy Acker is able to bring me goosebumps every time she is on screen.
Moff: I like a show that rewards active engagement, and every week, this show delivers. Sure, it’s evolved from a somewhat a-typical police procedural to a fascinating meta-commentary on technology, privacy, and absolute power – slash – scifi action thriller, but it’s can’t miss. (And now that the HR storyline is *finally* coming to a head? Hoo Boy!)

Pretty Little Liars, ABC Family. Grade: B
Kerry: As far as PLL episodes go, the Halloween special wasn’t too great, but it wasn’t bad either.

WEDNESDAY

The Tomorrow People, The CW, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: B+
Moff: It’s a pretty solid reboot of the original BBC series, keeping and honing the parts that make sense while trimming the fat (or, in this case, the hazy spiritual/new age-y stuff). Plus, saying it’s ‘Amellsday’ is fun.

Back in the Game, ABC, 8:30 p.m. EST. Grade: A
Kerry: Tragically cancelled, but it was fun while it lasted.

Wouldya Kiss Already

Even Ollie can’t believe how good the show’s gotten.

Arrow, The CW, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: A/A+
Kerry: The best superhero show on television.
Becca: Arrow is not experiencing any kind of sophomore slump. It only gets better, and has made me come to love Thea, Roy and Quentin this season. Here’s hoping they continue to only get better, and give us more Sara Lance and Sin.
Moff: Amellsday. AM-ELLS-DAY. A-MELLS-DAY. AMEL-LUS-DAY. See? It’s fun.

Modern Family, ABC, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: B

CSI, CBS, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: B/B-
Moff: Of the three versions of this show, the original has had the most cast turnover, but it’s also the only one that’s lasted. I can only assume it’s because CSI: Original Flavor continues to deliver with weird deaths, gallows humor, office politics that never overshadow the case, and solid performances from a stable of genuinely talented actors.

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FX/FXX, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: A
Kerry: It was another great season full of selfishness, cursing, and laughs.

THURSDAY

Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, ABC, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: F
Moff: I so wanted to like this. I love Alice in Wonderland. I adore Michael Socha, between his turns on Being Human and Misfits. Naveen Andrews can be relied on for his commitment to a character’s story. And I know Jane Espenson is capable of telling a story about a woman who can beat off her oppressors even if she does so through tears. But this show is a mess, and it takes itself too seriously to acknowledge what a mess it is.

Kristen Wiiggle

This one’s for Kerry.

Parks & Recreation, NBC, 8 p.m. EST. Grade: A/A-
Kerry: It was great until it went on a weird month-long hiatus. We’ll see if they can keep their A without Ann Perkins or Chris Traeger.

The Crazy Ones, CBS, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: B/B+
Becca: The cast is brilliant, and it gives me feels every time I watch. Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar have a dynamic father and daughter relationship, and the supporting cast are excellent.
Moff: It may not have started strong out-the-gate, but it’s one of the few comedies I’m making a point of watching this autumn. Plus, it’s great to see Smidge given a chance to flex her comedy muscles in addition to her dramatic ones (and her sword arm.) And Robin Williams doesn’t overpower any of the younger performers, which isn’t always the case when a ‘comedy legend’ returns to TV after several decades.

The Michael J. Fox Show, NBC, 9:30 p.m. EST. Grade: C
Moff: The writing is uneven, and the confessional-style segues are a little jarring. But it’s salvageable, and the cast is talented.

Deducible Caps

When in doubt, eat the evidence.

Elementary, CBS, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: A/B+
Becca: The characters’ stories this season have been phenomenal, and I only wish it continue on this path.

FRIDAY

Night Always Awesome

Wherein Rosalee speaks for the audience.

Grimm, NBC, 9 p.m. EST. Grade: A
Moff: While the first season was a mess – Is it a procedural? Is it a fantasy? Is it a cop drama? A family drama? A romance? – and the second season had its missteps, this action drama is finally hitting its stride. The A- and B-plots are well balanced and on point each week, and ideas the writers floated in the first two seasons are finally becoming more concrete as the characters discover their strengths.

Haven, SyFy, 10 p.m. EST. Grade: B
Moff: This season started out weak, with the introduction of a few new characters who weren’t killed off within one or two episodes. But in the second half of the season, the stakes are being raised exponentially, thanks to one of those new characters. I don’t spend much time theorizing about where a show may go, but if I’m right and Haven is about to reveal the true identity of a character, even tangential Stephen King fans are going to flip.

SATURDAY

The Strangest Love

And, though she may hit me, this one’s for Becca.

Saturday Night Live, NBC, 11 p.m. EST. Grade: C/D
Becca: Can we make all of the episode Weekend Update? I keep hoping each new season will get better, but it doesn’t. The saddest part is I find Once Upon a Time more enjoyable than a sketch show I used to look forward to each week a few years ago.
Moff: And with Seth Myer’s tenure as head writer winding down…well. It doesn’t look good.

Some of the shows we’re thinking about catching up on over the winter hiatus are New Girl, Dracula, and Parenthood. Anyone else have suggestions?

Tune In / Tune Out: Week of October 6, 2013

It was a slow week, TV-wise, with several stand-out episodes, but a few genuine stinkers, too.

Tune IN

Brooklyn Nine Nine: It needs the ratings, people! It’s a smart, quick, funny cop comedy structured like Parks and Recreation, and it deserves at least a half-season order to prove itself. Andre Braugher continues to hit it out of the park as Captain Holt, Andy Samberg plays the arrogant but effective Detective Peralta, and they’re surrounded by a supporting cast that is becoming more endearing with each week. – Kerry

NCIS: For a show heading into its 11th season, I didn’t think I’d be surprised by a plot that involved both bullying and Twitter. But, the bullying element of the story didn’t attempt to make it a ‘teaching’ moment, as so many shows try to do; and the use of Twitter to crowdsource eyewitnesses was practical and made sense within the logic of the episode. – Moff

Person of Interest: What might have been a one-note story about the dangers of online dating and predatory Nice Guys was actually an interesting take on a star-crossed lovers tale, with several nice moments between Det. Carter and the Number of the Week. But the ‘B plot’, of Robin/Root engineering her escape from the mental institution, with the help of The Machine, no less, was inspired and thrilling as Root politely threatened her psychiatrist and then literally shot her way out of the hospital. Of particular interest is the agreement she and The Machine appeared to have reached regarding her excessive and fatal use of force in exchange for help escaping. – Moff

Sleepy Hollow: I enjoyed the dynamic between the two sisters and Ichabod Crane. It had heart especially with the two sisters. They are complete opposites in some ways, but the scene with them in the interrogation room was beautiful. I hope I get to see more interactions between them, and Crane as someone who tries to keep the peace between them. However, I will continue to wonder when Abbie will finally take Crane shopping, but I guess there is no time with trying to save the world. – Becca

Arrow: The show was the highlight of the week for me. It stood out during a mediocre week of TV, and gave me so much of I what I wanted and needed. It was the strongest premiere I have seen this year with the storytelling, and left with a promise of more things to come. – Becca

Tune OUT
Once Upon a Time: The A Plot consisted of Emma allowing Peter Pan to manipulate her, then crying about it, while the B Plot was Rumpelstiltskin hallucinating and being chased by a corn cob doll as he wandered the jungle. While I’m willing to suspend disbelief that, somehow, stories like Frankenstein and Alice in Wonderland qualify as ‘fairytales,’ I am drawing the line at using Heart of Darkness as inspiration. If Emma starts painting her face with mud, a la Apocalypse Now, I’m changing the channel. – Moff

Castle: A forgettable crime, a lack of camaraderie between Beckett and the guys, and a “twist” ending that has any self-respecting Beckett fan screaming in frustration does not a good episode make. – Kerry

How I Met Your Mother: There was very little plot, no resolution of the main storyline, and we had to suffer watching Marshall through an iPad as he “lawyered” everyone. Even Ted’s revelation that he still had feelings for Robin didn’t seem to land. The only good parts of this episode were Robin, Tim Gunn, and Billy Zabka. You can definitely skip this episode and still feel like you didn’t miss anything. – Kerry

Tune In / Tune Out: Week of Sept. 22, 2013

When we met up last night to discuss the first full week of the Fall 2013 TV season, we found ourselves a tad overwhelmed. So many new shows premiered this week that we found ourselves trying to remember exactly what we’d watched and what we’d thought. But this week’s Tune In / Tune Out represents what we found most memorable, for better or worse.

Tune IN

Sleepy Hollow: The dynamic between Lt. Mills and Crane was enjoyable, and the feel of them being partners is evident. It was a good second episode, and I’m glad John Cho is back, even with his deformed neck. The last five minutes of the show was what stood out to me the most. I hope Abbie continues to see the sheriff, and I can’t wait to see where the show goes with her sister being involved. – Becca

The Blacklist: James Spader did not disappoint. I enjoyed his role on the show, and it will be interesting to see where it goes. I’m still getting a he-could-be-Keen’s-father vibe from the show, and hope there is another reason why he is so interested in her. Keen, herself, was good, and I particularly enjoyed that what appeared to be a happy, normal life was, in fact, not. I know that may sound wrong, but I enjoyed the twist with her husband, and I can’t wait to see why he married her. – Becca

How I Met Your Mother: The first half of the hour-long season premiere was lackluster, but the second half (“Coming Back”) made up for it. Between Marshall’s storyline with Sherri Shepherd, Barney coming to terms with his brother’s bad news, and a long-awaited glimpse into Ted’s future with The Mother, this episode brought the heart and the laughs that we remember from seasons past. – Kerry

And the audience goes ‘awwww.’

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: The show had its ups and downs, but the ups outweigh the downs. Knowing Joss Whedon’s other works, this is only the beginning of something promising. The problem is it is too hard to have background, a story, and a real depth into the introduction of characters in one hour. – Becca

Person of Interest: After a sophomore season spent relying on the major female characters to play girlfriends or be satisfied with lackluster romance b-plots, the third season opened with impressive performances from Taraji P. Henson, Sarah Shahi and Amy Acker, whose characters each had meaty storylines that almost outshone the Number of the Week. And if The Machine does have a female consciousness, the third season may be POI’s Season of the HBIC. Fingers crossed. – Moff

“It’s ‘Root’ if you’re nice. ‘The Right Hand of God’ if you’re nasty.”

Parks and Recreation: The sixth season opener, “London,” started with an impromptu wedding between Ron Swanson and his girlfriend, Diane, which is probably one of the best weddings we’ve seen on television.

We hear ya, Leslie.

Leslie, meanwhile, was grappling with the reality of her recall election while she visited London to receive an award, and the bitterness that comes with a thankless job. Between speeches from Ron and April to cheer her up, along with exciting news from Ann and Chris, Leslie seemed to break out of her funk. We were also delighted to see Peter Serafinowicz appear as Lord Covington, as well as Henry Winkler as Jean-Ralphio’s father, Dr. Sapperstein. The highlight of the episode was Ron’s tour of the Lagavulin distillery, which Leslie had sent him on as a surprise. – Kerry

Tune OUT

NCIS: LA: It’s funny. While NCIS managed to start off its 11th season with an interesting, if not earth-shaking premiere, its younger sibling started off its fifth season with a less than impressive outing. Maybe it’s that I can’t quite accept Christopher Lambert as a villain when I keep expecting him to whip out a katana and battle to the death. Maybe it’s how played out the Janvier storyline feels at this point, especially as we seem to know no more about him than we did at his introduction. Or maybe I just don’t like seeing Eric Christian Olsen looking so defeated. Tsk, tsk, show. Tsk tsk. – Moff

Come back to Greendale, Vaughn. It’s safe now, we swear. Jeff graduated.

The Michael J. Fox Show (second episode): The story was predictable, and while it had a few good lines, it was nowhere as good as the pilot. The plot of Mike hitting on his neighbor, and belittling his co-worker, Harris, was off-putting even after his explanation. – Becca

Moms: Like Dads, it feels as if everyone is too good for this show. The tagline could be ‘history keeps repeating itself,’ with the three generations of women having close to the same storylines. A good Chuck Lorre show would be Dharma and Greg, not this. The only way it would become interesting is if it was Salem, from Sabrina the Teenage Witch, doing the daily affirmations at the beginning of the show because he was slowly trying to take over the world. – Becca

Talk about unlucky black cats.