My review of Fringe ran in today’s edition of the Tufts Daily. The article is the latest edition of “Second Chances,” a semi−recurring feature that looks at TV shows that deserve a second chance from viewers. Their ratings may be low, but their quality is high, so if you tuned out early on, here’s our case for why you should give each show another try.
Sci−fi is a tough genre to get right, especially on television. Scientific jargon about aliens and other dimensions doesn’t sit well with the average audience, so sci−fi shows have to carefully balance their genre roots with more exciting action and characters to rope viewers in and keep them watching.
“The X−Files” (1993−2002) did it quite successfully (though arguably less so in its later years), and “Lost” (2004−10) was ABC’s flagship series for the duration of its run. But then there are cases, like “Firefly” (2002−03), which barely last a season. Even “Lost,” well, lost a good chunk of its viewership once it embraced its sci−fi side and revealed itself to be as much about time travel and electromagnetic energy as about its characters.
My review of Mr. Sunshine, the new Matthew Perry comedy on NBC, ran in today’s edition of the Tufts Daily.
Some TV comedies measure greatness in terms of jokes per minute. For instance, funnier equals better for Tina Fey and company on “30 Rock,” even if it means cutting corners when it comes to plot and characterization. Other comedies can be good without being laugh−out−loud funny. “Scrubs” (2001−10), although it certainly had its humorous moments, was always at its best when it threw more serious dramatic elements into the mix.
Unfortunately, “Mr. Sunshine,” the new Matthew Perry vehicle on ABC, doesn’t fall into either camp. Despite a strong cast and promising premise, the jokes largely fall flat and there isn’t much substance to otherwise prop up the show.
You can read the full review here.
Photo Credit: tvfanatic.com
My review of Fringe is running in today’s edition of the Tufts Daily. After nearly two months off the air, the sci-fi series came back strong with “Peter,” a great mix of mythology and character development, giving us the story of how alternate-Peter came to live in “over here” while giving John Noble an hour-long showcase for his many talents. You can read the review here.