Thursday, February 28, 2008

Guilty TV Pleasures

by Libby Hellmann

Okay, I confess. I’ve become a TV junkie. I’m watching – and enjoying -- programs I never thought I would. Part of it has been the Chicago winter: I don’t remember ever spending this much time at home. Part of it is my effort to perfect the art of procrastination – I’m about 100 pages into a new novel, and rather than figure out what the book is really about, I'm staring at the tube. And part of it is that the shows are so available online. Or on DVDs. It’s much easier to watch an episode at 3 in the afternoon than to remember the night and the time it was originally scheduled.

So, with that… here’s what I’ve been looking at…

Lipstick Jungle: A Sex-in-the-City clone but with high-powered women, this isn’t a bad show. The women wear incredible clothes, they look fabulous, the men are sexy, and the story lines – well – they’re not new, but they’re palatable. At least on snowy afternoons. Turns out Brooke Shields can act, after all. Plus, Nico, who played Audrey on “24”, which we all know has been MIA this season, has helped stave off my “24” withdrawal symptoms.

Boston Legal: What a hoot! I love the satire. I love the acting. Even the plot lines, as hackneyed as they are, make me giggle. And William Shattner, James Spader, and Candace Bergen look like they’re having the time of their lives. This is just over-the-top fun.


Damages: Who said the serial thriller/melodrama is dead? Glenn Close did a great job, and the twists and turns, while predictable, were fun to watch.Nice digs too… the perfect starter apartment for the young couple, the great suburban mansion on the lake, the upscale New York coop.

Desperate Housewives: I’ll probably go back to it when it comes back, if only because my daughter and I used to watch it together. She’s in college now but usually calls during commercials. Sure, it’s campy, silly, unreal, and manipulative, but, for the most part, it’s pure escape. And their houses are always so clean.

Weeds: I’ve always thought Elizabeth Perkins was one of the most underrated actresses around. And who knew Kevin Nealon would be so good? Or Tanye Patano? The writing is razor sharp, especially when Heylia and Andy are around, the humor is just black enough, and every time Mary Louise Parker sips her frappachino, I really "get" Agrestic.

I’m also looking forward to the new season of The Shield… (does anyone know when it comes back?)… and, of course, 24 when it finally makes an appearance next season. I haven’t been great at watching The Wire, but I plan to catch up. And there are always reruns of The Sopranos.

What about you? ‘Fess up… what are your guilty TV pleasures?

26 comments:

Michael Dymmoch said...

Charlie Rose, sometimes twice a day.

Criminal Minds--even reruns.

Medium.

Really guilty pleasure--CSI and CSI New York. The forensics is bogus, but the writing's pretty good. And I love Gary Sinise and William Petersen.

Maryann Mercer said...

I'm hooked on Men In Trees--ABC finally brought it back. On Wednesday nights when I'm toiling away at B&N. I watch it on my laptop on Thursday. NCIS--Abby's lab? Not as high tech as CSI but I love her character and Mark Harmon is a pleasure to watch. The BBC's new Robin Hood, currently MIA for the second season but supposedly it's out on the net, and BBC America will air it soon.
Law & Order CI and SVU-even reruns on USA.
I've got DVDs for The Closer, Bones, and Friday Night Lights, and the first four seasons of West Wing (bless Aaron Sorkin). If I'm ever too poor for cable, I could watch a DVD a day until I'm 90!
HAppy Leap Day!

Dana King said...

My guilty pleasures are sports, mostly hockey and baseball.

I'm hooked on The Wire, but I don't consider that a guilty pleasure.

Barbara D'Amato said...

Gilmore Girls!

Sara said...

I'm about 20 years behind schedule. It's M*A*S*H for me. And idly cruising the Web. Did you know Clare is the patron saint of TV writers? When she was too ill to rise from her nun's cell to attend mass, t he service was projected onto her cell wall by the Holy Spirit. We print writers have dull saints. We ought to have Joseph Smith, who was given the gold books of Mormon completely written, or one of the ancient prophets to whom Gd allegedly dictated large chunks of Torah or Quran.

Matt said...

Friday Night Lights.

Great, great show - and, of course, verging on cancellation.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Friday Night Lights, The Wire, In Treatment, Dexter, The Office.

neha said...

I always avoid to Watch Boston Legal like shows bcoz i am Lawyer and i dont like to watch legal episodes. Once i have seen one eps and i like it and after that i hooked with this.

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charley said...

Thanks for the post. I really love to Watch TV Shows Online.

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