Tag Archives: premiere

Smash: First Two Episodes

ZOË RICE: I came to Smash with mixed expectations. On the one hand, I’m a sucker for a musical number, and before Glee became unbearable I was an early fan. A new TV show with the promise of awesome – dare we hope Fame-like? – musical numbers meant at least a tingle of excitement. On the other hand…theater people. Don’t get me wrong; to use the cliche, some of my best friends are theater people. But man, some of them can be pretentious. And inauthentic. And so “on” all the time. Would the Smash characters be just like that?

JESSICA BADER: I’ve been excited about Smash ever since that day last year when I decided to sit down and watch the trailer videos for all of the new network TV shows. A show about the making of a Broadway musical? With original songs from Marc Shaiman? What’s not to like (other than the whole not-premiering-until-February-sweeps thing)? Yet, I can’t help but feel like both the show and what’s expected of it are a bit too much. Continue reading

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The League: Season Debut in Review

ZOË RICE: Last season, when The League debuted, I was instantly smitten. As a woman, a non-football fan, and a non-fantasy sports player, I’m guessing I wasn’t the target audience. But the pilot of this show got it right. Here were five friends with (mostly) adult lives–three had wives, one had a supremely successful career, and one (Taco) was the Zach Galifianakis wacky, stoner, not-quite-there character. But even in their mundane, everyday situations, these men were going as crazy as possible for fantasy football. The League had distilled that supremely popular type of Apatow humor into edgy sitcom form. Unfortunately, whatever worked in the pilot episode has been completely abandoned for the premiere of season 2. What was irreverent fun has degraded into what merely seems like a bunch of idiots carousing around Vegas. The League went from Apatow-esque to a very poor imitation of The Hangover.

HOWARD MEGDAL: It’s all the irritation of being with unpleasant people who aren’t funny without the pleasure of actually playing fantasy football!

Look, I don’t expect the show to be an accurate portrayal of fantasy football madness and consistently humorous and a strong character study and avoid creaky plot point swings. But one would be nice. Two, and I’d probably watch again. Continue reading

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