Here’s another couple of new shows currently airing in the States:

The Cleveland Show: while Family Guy and American Dad conduct business as usual, Family Guys’s weakest character, Cleveland, has moved away from Spooner Street to star in his very own show. Predictably it’s appalling. It’s also an inevitability – you know you’re going to watch it, it’s just a matter of when.

FlashForward: Channel 5 made a huge song and dance about this new sci-fi drama, but something about all the hype never quite seemed right. Perhaps it was the involvement of John Cho (Harold of Harold and Kumar, and  one of the MILF guys from American Pie); it was hard to imagine that he could play a convincing FBI agent. Pretty much all the other cast members are Brits, which I suppose is why Channel 5 liked it so much. The only way it manages to get people to come back week after week is by using the cunning old ploy of ending every episode on a cliffhanger.

White Collar: not awful. A con man assists the agent who’s been chasing him in exchange for his freedom. Ish. It’s kinda fun, but a little too polished to be gripping.

Coming soon – the verdict on NCIS Los Angeles.


Having moved house recently, I have had to find a new gym to frequent. It has been something of a shock to go from the spacious environs of Virgin Active to the slightly less salubrious quarters of the Fitness First situated under the gap between platforms 17 and 18 of Liverpool Street station. One receives similar looks from overburdened commuters of a morning disappearing down into this subterranean netherworld as those seeking out the intra-mural platform for the Hogwarts express.

One of the compensatory features of my new venue is that lots of the exercise machines have their own TV screens. I was very impressed with this at first, as it allows you to control what you watch (since Midsomer Murders is never the most inspirational programming to be cycling along to), and allows people with rubbish eye sight like me to watch the TV without straining and looking like a puffed-out mole on a hamster wheel.


Enough said


5 minutes ago, at the end of the pilot episode of new show Community, I heard a few bars of a song. No lyrics for me to put into Google, just a bit of a tune. While there’s probably an app for that, I don’t have an iPhone.

Anyway, a Google search for something like “song end community pilot tv” took me to a forum, where someone had already answered my question: the song, if you were wondering, is Good Ol’ Fashion Nightmare by Matt & Kim.

I love the internet.

Obviously,  my time is valuable: there are only so many hours in a day, and I can only look at a screen for so long before my eyes start watering. Over the last few weeks I’ve been watching the start of the TV season in the US, and here’s the verdict, pretty much in alphabetical order:

Accidentally On Purpose: a new “Cougar” sitcom with Jenna Elfman (Dharma and Greg) and sexy Scot Ashley Jensen (Extras).  Cougar Elfman gets knocked up by a guy in his 20s who moves in with her. Jensen plays a gin-soaked slag; usually they get all the good lines. Usually. (more…)

This is the future. I can’t be bothered to explain all the cool features but watch the video if you like that sort of thing. Also watch it if you like geeks making lame gags and using words like ‘shiny’ to mean cool. Which, by the way, they cribbed from Firefly, as well as the ‘Wave’ concept itself (or at least the name).

The average cinema-goer must be getting stupider by the day. Disbelief is no longer being suspended, it is being hunted down and scalped, rather like the unsuspecting Nazi soldiers sweeping through the back streets of occupied France in Tarantino’s latest, Inglourious Basterds. Their fate? To die at the hand of one of the least believable characters in recent cinematic memory.

The film’s main focus is the titular basterds, a crack Jewish-American army hit squad, led by Pitt’s insufferable Aldo Raine, who hunt down and massacre Nazis, working closely with British and French intelligence and German double agents. As the plot unfolds, it transpires that this elite group’s masterplan for infiltrating a Nazi gathering at a theatre consists of walking through the front door pretending to be Italian cameramen, despite none of them speaking a word of Italian. (more…)