Monday, January 24, 2011

Diggavision the Critic

H. Jon Benjamin is the funniest guy on TV you’ve never heard of.  Who is HJB?  He is the voice of both Sterling Archer from FX’s Archer and Bob Belcher from Fox’s Bob’s Burgers.  Now you’re saying what shows is he talking about?
Speaking of FX, I believe I am attracted to their shows because the protagonists are flawed and morally ambiguous.  What’s that say about me?  Whether it is drunk fireman Tommy Gavin from Rescue Me, crooked cop Vic Mackey from The Shield, gypsy turned identify thief Wayne Malloy from The Riches, unscrupulous attorney Patty Hewes from Damages, gun running dope dealing biker Jax Teller from Sons of Anarchy, misogynistic  narcissistic plastic surgeon Christian Troy from Nip/Tuck, the anachronistic angry lawman Raylon Givens from Justified, and most recently punch drunk ex-champ turned thug Patrick Leary from Lights Out these characters have depth and complexity not seen on TV since Tony Soprano.
Compare the above to USA Network’s Burn Notice, White Collar, In Plain Sight, Royal Pains, Covert Affairs, and Fairly Legal all feature traditional good guys/gals with nice smiles and hearts of 18 carat gold.  Now guess how many USA Network shows I watch?
Thumbs down to NBC and David E. Kelley for wasting Kathy Bates in the awful Harry’s Law.  Co-stars that make the USA network stars look interesting, dialog from 1980’s LA Law episodes, and overacting that would shame John Lithgow from his 3rd Rock from the Sun days.
Big thumbs up to Episodes and Shameless on Showtime, the former actually makes Matt LeBlanc interesting and the latter has created an entire cast with depth albeit with hard to believe storylines.  On the downside it is time to retire Californication, the Hank Moody chronicles have become tired.
Suggestion to local station’s news broadcasts: ditch the weather person.  I don’t need someone to read off the monitor that is 73 in Phoenix, 72 in Scottsdale, 72 in Tempe, 71 in Fountain Hills, 70 in Carefree, 68 in Wickenburg, 73 in Avondale, 72 in Glendale….when it is on the screen I am watching.  I also don’t need your graphics department to tell me via a big sun and thermometer that 110F is HOT.
Finally, weekend political talk show roundup: ABC continues to tinker with This Week with Christiane Amanpour as the show continues to underperform.   Next tinker should be to replace George “So dreary perhaps it’s time to the read the” Will.  David Gregory will never replace Tim Russert on Meet The Press, but recently he has apparently grown a pair.  Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer is typically like an episode of Murder She Wrote or Diagnosis Murder.  As much as I try to watch Fox News Sunday, I can’t seem to do it.  Looking at Charles Krauthammer’s mug gives me night terrors.   This leaves The Chris Matthews Show and its fast paced often witty banter amongst his four guests often including Norah O’Donnell.  Didn’t see that coming did you?

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