5-sentence review of ‘Doctor Who: Flatline’


Doctor Who” | Series 8, Episode 9: “Flatline” | Date: Oct. 18, 2014

  1. The two-dimensional creatures that terrorize Bristol in “Flatline” were the most inventive monsters since the Weeping Angels and produced the scariest of the eighth series.
  2. We know the Doctor (Peter Capaldi) lies, but so does Clara (Clara Oswald) — and quite a lot, especially to her love Danny (Samuel Anderson), who specifically told her that was the one thing he would not tolerate.
  3. The twelfth incarnation of the Doctor finally has his hero moment — bursting forth from the newly restored TARDIS to banish the murderous two-dimensional monsters.
  4. It was a scene they gave the 11th Doctor in his first episode, but really made the audience wait for Capaldi in the role and, boy, it was worth it.
  5. Missy (Michelle Gomez), referred to in reports as “the Gatekeeper of the Nethersphere,” watches the Doctor and Clara argue after the adventure and makes a vague comment that leads me to wonder: Is Clara the true villain of Series 8?

5-sentence review of ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Face My Enemy’

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” | Season 2, Episode 4: “Face My Enemy” | Date: Oct. 14, 2014

  1. Agent May (Ming-Na Wen) in a silvery, slinky dress fought Agent May in her underwear.
  2. One of them wasn’t really Agent May, but a Hydra agent in disguise.
  3. But it was kind of awesome in a Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling kind of way.
  4. Brain-damaged Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) saved the airplane by stuttering and pointing awkwardly.
  5. Skye (Chloe Bennet), who is not brain-damaged, remained largely useless, though she was seen using a computer because she’s very good with Google.

1-sentence review of ‘Bad Judge: One Brave Waitress’


Bad Judge” | Season 1, Episode 3: “One Brave Waitress” | Date: Oct. 16, 2014

  1. I can’t decide which is worse: watching “Bad Judge” because I want to write mean things about how bad it is or the fact that “Bad Judge” is on television at all.

5-sentence review of ‘The Flash: Fastest Man Alive’


The Flash” | Season 1, Episode 2: “Fastest Man Alive” | Date: Oct. 14, 2014

  1. “The Flash” is the best show I’ve watched this year.
  2. The show is remarkably true to its superhero comics origins, but loses very little in translation.
  3. It does not force itself to be dark and gritty, yet avoids being campy and silly.
  4. I like that it gives homages to the underrated 1990 series of the same name.
  5. But the fun, oh, the starry-eyed belief that one man can make a difference and be extraordinary, well, there just isn’t enough of that earnestness in fiction or reality.

5-sentence review of ‘Selfie: With A Little Yelp From My Friends’


Selfie” | Season 1, Episode 3: “With A Little Yelp From My Friends” | Date: Oct. 14, 2014

  1. How can I love Karen Gillan so much yet hate this series so completely?
  2. “Selfie” is stupid and mean.
  3. Look, I’m not from the point-and-click, always-on, plugged-in generation, but I do work with and know plenty of people who are.
  4. And, sure, sometimes I think they’re a little too interested in themselves and social media and Internet babble.
  5. But Gillan’s Eliza is so stupid and clueless that it pushes past parody well beyond the point of absurdity to just a mean-spirited smear of young people that can’t be enjoyed at any level, even with lurid thoughts about the leggy Gillan.

On TV: Where are all the reviews?


Typically, this blog feed would be filled with reviews of the latest episodes of network and cable television shows from the previous few nights.

But I’m suffering from a case of anhedonia. It’s a very stressful time at work. I’m just not enjoying TV as much as I have in the past. Some of it has to do with the programing, which is not very good. But some of it is I’m simply depressed and anxious. I don’t want to think about the TV I’m watching or even make fun of it, which I usually do.

So instead of watching shows Tuesday night, I watched the baseball playoff game between the Baltimore Orioles and Kansas City Royals. What I really did is fall asleep in about the third inning. I woke up and the game was over and a repeat of “Conan” was on. Jennifer Garner was the guest. I used to have a big crush on Jennifer Garner when she was on “Alias.”

TV I didn’t watch on Tuesday night included “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” during which I’m sure Skye would have annoyed me.

I saw a couple minutes of “The Flash.” He was getting beat up, but he ran away. He can run fast, that guy.

I also didn’t watch “Person of Interest” because I don’t like that show anymore.

Monday night, I didn’t watch “The Blacklist,” during which I’m sure Reddington took his hat on and off several times.

I also skipped “Sleepy Hollow.” Boy, I hope I didn’t miss a decapitation.

Maybe I will catch up on Wednesday. The only show I watch on Wednesday is “Black-ish,” which I’ve grown oddly fond of despite being a family comedy with race-based humor.

I used to watch “Red Band Society,” but I hated all the characters, the plot and the writing. I also watched a month’s worth of “The Mysteries of Laura,” but I think that was mostly because Debra Messing is a redhead and I’m a sucker for a ginger.

So, I’m sorry TV fans, I took the night off. And I might take some more nights off, too.

I’m just not feeling that great and not all that interested in thinking or being funny at present.

I did watch some cute cat videos on YouTube, but I won’t review them.

5-sentence review of ‘Scorpion’ Season 1, Episode 4: ‘Shorthanded’


Scorpion” | Season 1, Episode 4: “Shorthanded” | Date: Oct. 13, 2014

  1. This week’s “Scorpion” lost me when Sylvester (Ari Stidham) pulled out his wallet and it one of those 1980s Velcro-style wallets, the Hollywood shorthand for nerd and lazy writing.
  2. Or maybe it was that people in the drunk tank in Vegas are allowed to wear their street clothes, including belts.
  3. Or perhaps it was when Walter (Elyes Gabel) escaped his cell using toilet materials and a synthetic blend shirt — because even if that worked, apparently jails in Las Vegas don’t have cameras.
  4. Or maybe it was the old trope of the bad guys forcing the good guys to dig their own graves in the middle of the desert; let’s leave that to the mafia movies.
  5. Or maybe it the heart-to-heart between Walter and Toby (Eddie Kaye Thomas) that closed with someone saying “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” a cliche so worn out it makes me cringe when I hear it, which unfortunately a lot.

5-sentence review of ‘Gotham’ Season 1, Episode 4: ‘Arkham’


Gotham” | Season 1, Episode 4: “Arkham” | Date: Oct. 13, 2014

  1. “Gotham” has a “Star Wars: Episode I” problem in that the kid who plays Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) is not very convincing as a brooding boy.
  2. “Gotham” has many other problems, too, like why is Alfred (Sean Pertwee) kind of a jerk?
  3. Also, what is with this palatial apartment shared by Gordon (Ben McKenzie) and his fiancee, Barbara (Erin Richards)?
  4. I don’t know many cops, even detectives, who live in penthouses, so unless Barbara is pulling in real money, I think maybe Gordon is really on the take.
  5. Of course, when I start looking at the apartment sizes, it’s a good sign the show isn’t really interesting enough to keep me entertained with the story.

5-sentence review of ‘The Big Bang Theory: The Focus Attenuation’


The Big Bang Theory” | Season 8, Episode 5: “The Focus Attenuation”
| Date: Oct. 13, 2014

  1. The guys decided to spend a weekend together coming up with new ideas to change the world, but it ends in them watching movies.
  2. The girls go to Las Vegas, where Bernadette (Melissa Rauch) and Amy (Mayim Bialik) get drunk and Penny (Kaley Cuoco) studies for her first gig as a pharmaceutical rep.
  3. Amy refers to Bernadette’s breasts as “hadron colliders” and asks what size they are.
  4. The joke is amusing, because Amy is basically asking what many male viewers have been thinking for a long time, but it’s also frustratingly objectifying for a show that’s supposed to be about smart people.
  5. Perhaps worst of all: She didn’t answer.

5-sentence review of ‘The Walking Dead’ Season 5, Episode 1: ‘No Sanctuary’


The Walking Dead” | Season 5, Episode 1: “No Sanctuary” | Date: Oct. 12, 2014

  1. “The Walking Dead” officially became torture porn Sunday, with its blood-soaked fifth season premiere.
  2. The show once inspired thought about how humanity would face its potential extinction.
  3. Now it’s just humans bashing people’s brains in with aluminum bats and killing slitting throats.
  4. The opening scene in the slaughterhouse reminded me of “Hostel 2″ or one of the umpteen “Saw” movies.
  5. And no, gore lovers, that is not meant as a compliment; “The Walking Dead” has taken a turn for the terrible.