Blog Archives

Must Be TV’s Moment, Again

The double positive that’s bred a negative that may evolve into a positive sign of a clearer picture to come to the liking of a certain show’s fans…?

’90s sitcom hit Will & Grace is back on NBC and it’s already been renewed for a second season. That’s the first positive. The next positive is that this second round of success for the original cast, writers, directors and crew members of Will & Grace is forcing its fellow “Must See TV” shows of yester-decade to think about a comeback, however brief.

Enter Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander from a very recent interview.

Yes, we (and the cast and writers) know all the complaints about the infamous Seinfeld series finale. Cognizant of this reality, Larry David wrote up a clever non-reunion reunion of Seinfeld on his second hit show Curb Your Enthusiasm on HBO several years ago. It was fantastic, which begs the question as to why the famous four-some (well, five-some) would risk their successful redo for the unknown on NBC? There’s no serious reason to do a reboot. However, Larry David’s comedic stock is at an all-time high right now…

A return to network primetime for Seinfeld, in whatever capacity, wouldn’t be nothing.

Prediction: If the seemingly impossible happens and Seinfeld returns to NBC, ladies and gentlemen, expect the Soaring Nineties to make a comeback like it’s never been imagined before.

Except by NBC. Because, you know, that pesky thing called “ratings.”

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Living in an Odd Van Down by the Comic Book Store in Malibu

Spoiler Alert: Information from last night’s CBS lineup (The Big Bang Theory, The Odd Couple & Two and a Half Men) and The Goldbergs are revealed below

From sunrise to sunset, yesterday was crazy.

First, battling a cold completely confused my mind, which resulted in a non-Goldbergs blog post. Have no fear though, that’s partly what today is for.

Erica wanted vehicular freedom from gas tank-obsessed Murray, so she manipulated Barry’s A-Team singing sweet spot that results in the best/worst van purchase of all-time. Meanwhile, Adam sought to rid himself of being known as “the nice guy.” This brought out Adam’s inner Don Rickles and Andrew Dice Clay, to the obvious anger from his family/comedic targets, to amplify his rep as the class clown. Adam’s journey to discovering his identity in middle school was an all too real portrayal. We try so hard to fit in and to be the person everybody else wants us to be. It’s a terribly awkward, embarrassing and frustrating moment in our lives.

In middle school, all we wanted and needed was for someone to be nice…

As for Erica and Barry becoming known as “van people” in their neighborhood (including their principal), all it took was delicious secret corn, the B-Team (for Barry) gas tank emptying and two genetically stubborn people conversing (Erica and Murray) to realize living in a van was not an ideal situation. Plus, the ’80s classic, “The Way It Is” by Bruce Hornsby & The Range helped significantly.

It’s a wonderful thing to have such a nice, funny family on television.

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Second, CBS owned last night’s sitcom battle. As in completely and entirely. The evening began with an emotional Big Bang Theory that finally dealt with the real life death of the wildly funny Carol Ann Susi/Mrs. Wolowitz. It coincided with the re-opening of Stuart’s comic book store with a sharper look, including some familiar furniture as pointed out by Howard. Plus, the phrase “let it go” got a genuinely welcomed resurgence back into our psyches thanks to Penny (inside joke for viewers of the episode).

Following the #1 sitcom on television was the premiere of CBS’s next great sitcom, The Odd Couple. Written as a modern revival to the ’70s comedy, it stars Matthew Perry (Oscar Madison) and Thomas Lennon (Felix Unger) as, well, an odd couple of roommates. For a pilot, it was fantastic! The writing and on-screen chemistry started slowly, as expected. But, by the end, the characters and writers revealed a promising (and hilarious) spark that will build into a roaring good fire of laughs. Like most great sitcoms, it will take a season or two to find its rhythm and pulse of its characters and story. Recall the necessary patience and development it took Seinfeld, Frasier, That ’70s Show and Friends to find its genius a few seasons in. The Odd Couple has an awesome cast and as they continue to fall into their respective roles more naturally as time goes on, this show will prove to be really special. Matthew Perry and Thomas Lennon have finally found their successful follow-up roles to their iconic television characters of yesteryear.

And then there were these, “men, men, men, manly men, who hoo who would show up?”

Following an unlikely 12-year run on CBS, Chuck Lorre’s raunchy, addictive and tumultuous sitcom came to an end last night. Having been at the taping for a couple scenes in the series finale two weeks ago today, which included Rose revealing Charlie was alive in the Malibu living room with Alan, Evelyn and Walden and Jake’s surprise return, it was still a tightly-held secret if Charlie Sheen would actually return. As curious viewers discovered, Charlie made a cameo as a Warner Bros. cartoon and, courtesy of a convincing stand-in from behind, in the must-see final scene. The finale had plenty of laughs, especially with funny pans and one-liners to studio cameras about the show and a series recap with guest officer Arnold  Schwarzenegger interviewing Alan and Walden as part of their pursuit to find the raging and “Silence of the Lambs-escapee” Charlie from Rose’s Sherman Oaks dungeon.

It was sad to see the show give its final curtain call, but it was time. Given the circumstances with Charlie Sheen and Angus T. Jones, Two and a Half Men could only continue for so long. One of the cool things about seeing a show taping live is learning inside information. In honor of the show’s success, and the fact it managed to be the longest running sitcom in television history, we learned that night that Warner Bros. would be renaming Stage 26, “The Two and a Half Men Stage.”

That’s winning.

As is this:

(CBS)

(CBS)

Happy “How I Met Your Mother Day!”

September 19, 2005: “Kids, I’m going to tell you an incredible story…the story of how I met your mother.”

It’s impossible to recap all the best parts from the series. Challenge: not accepted. However, how about a few favorite instances?

We all have our favorite Ted moments that made us laugh (“My parents live in Ohio, I live in the moment”), heartfelt gestures that were quintessential Ted Mosby (the 2-minute date and the blue French horn) and scenes that made us feel the other way (sitting on the bed reading a note from Stella). Plus, who can forget Robin Sparkles (and Alan Thicke!), Mustache Marshall and his perfect use of a marching band (Go Fighting Hens!), Barney’s playbook, suits and his countless one-way missions to Outer Space that always took off in the early morning before his date woke up, Lily’s book on tape (and “tantrum!”), MacLaren’s Pub and a bevy of hilarious guest stars and characters that made the show a must-see event each week for nine seasons (The Captain!).

And, of course, there’s Marvin-Wait For It-Eriksen!

It’s Ted & the Mother (stay tuned for the name tonight), Lily & Marshall and Barney & Robin.

Below is an interview where each of the main cast members revealed their favorite moments of the series. It seems fitting to hear what has stuck with them through all these years.

March 31, 2014: (Without seeing the series finale tonight) What did we learn? Not just that it was a great television show, but that How I Met Your Mother was (most importantly) an incredible story about friends who did a lot of crazy things, funny things, romantic things and surprising things that led them to great success, heartache and uncertainty. But, ultimately, each of them found a way to discover and get everything they ever wanted.

In the most perfectly imperfect way, this show was Legendary.

Stay tuned for the series finale of How I Met Your Mother tonight at 8:00 p.m. on CBS.

Happy Monday and Here’s to Your Own Incredible Story!

P.S. Remember that awesome HIMYM poem written on Jimmy’s Daily Planet that shall be read as one would from the era of Oliver Twist?

TV’s Circle of Trust

Last night, I watched (not for the first time) the series finale of “Frasier,” which was followed by the series premiere of “Frasier” on the Hallmark Channel (11:00 p.m.-midnight). Seeing the popular and witty sitcom come full circle in this fashion was a surreal experience, partly because most of the same sets were used for both episodes. Without question, witnessing the journey of all the characters was worth every second of every show.

A sight to see for sure.

This sequence of events begs the questions of the who, what, when, where, why and how of our own lives? Perhaps the most fascinating quality about Dr. Frasier Crane was his insistence to plan, plan and plan his life’s events with his overly analytical mind. And yet, his life was so much more fulfilling and enjoyable (and funny!) when the unexpected occurred without warning.

In the series premiere, Frasier took a chance at disturbing his new bachelor lifestyle in Seattle to reacquaint himself with Martin, his polar opposite father, by asking him to move in with him. Frasier was clearly a man of habits and preferences (“the chair”), so this provided quite the challenge for the famed psychiatrist. Still, the audience could see that Frasier’s life was going to benefit greatly from the unknown.

The series finale (spoiler alert from 2004) saw Frasier engage in a classic psychological dilemma of certainty versus mystery. In the end, Frasier chose mystery. While standing in his apartment for the last time with Niles and Daphne, Martin and Ronee and Roz, it’s safe to say he realized that his genius mind was not the primary source of wisdom that led him and everyone else into that room together after eleven years.

From the series premiere to the series finale, the famed radio psychiatrist Dr. Frasier Crane was talking and indeed listening…just not from the place he may have expected.

Nine years after signing off the air and it’s still worth a listen or two.