Finals are here, and summer is close behind. What are you going to do with all that extra time? Well, I watch too much TV (just ask my transcript), and I thought I would share with you some of the new shows you can catch up with this summer.
Shameless: This is one of my favorites from this year. It is based on an English show but is set in Chicago’s South Side. The show follows six kids in a dysfunctional family—and dysfunctional is being kind—as they try to survive, despite the antics of their alcoholic dad. It is funny, but very gritty and genuine. It is not for the faint of heart. It could have either been depressing or too campy, but it is neither. It is better than reality TV because it does not leave you with that dirty feeling afterwards. Nothing is out of bounds on this show, so be prepared to see things not meant for the faint of heart. Don’t expect the episodes “Daddyz Girl” and “Three Boys” to be something to watch with the family. It is great though.
Episodes: I had this on DVR for two months before I watched a single . . . um, episode. I did not have high hopes for the big return of . . . wait for it . . . Matt LeBlanc. Yup, Joey. The show is about Matt LeBlanc on a new show. I know. Sounds terrible, right? It is actually well done. An English couple wins awards for their very British comedy show, and a U.S. TV network brings it here. As they say—hilarity ensues. Mr. LeBlanc is very self-deprecating and funny playing himself the way we all want to think he is in real life. Give it a chance—I promise.
How to Make It in America: Entourage for the hipster NYC crowd. The two main characters are trying to hustle their way to success in the NYC fashion industry. It is a wonderful portrayal of how hard people will work to get what they want. Great characters and the use of life in NYC as the setting is fun to watch.
Terriers: Crime comedy/drama which takes place in a lovely little place called Ocean Beach. Yup! That O.B. This is fun because just when you think the likeable characters are going to get too nice, one of them kills someone, sleeps around, or just beats someone to a pulp. Yes, it is funny.
Louie: It is basically a low budget Seinfeld, but with Louis C.K. I am not saying that like it is a bad thing. It is just the opposite. Be prepared for Louis C.K.’s brand of humor though. The show is much more Curb Your Enthusiasm than it is Seinfeld. You are going to feel awkward while you laugh, because Louis is awkward no matter what he does.
The Walking Dead: I like zombies more than vampires. It wasn’t always that way. Not until vampires went from being kick-ass people eaters to being emo goth kids in love. However, zombies are hard to pull off. The Walking Dead does a great job of riding the line between 28 Days Later and Night of the Living Dead. Even the music is done well (think 28 Days Later). Do I really have to tell you the story line? Epidemic, almost everyone dies, and the survivors struggle to stay alive. Even though it is TV, the production is good, and there is plenty of gore. Plenty.
The Borgias: As you have heard if you saw the advertisements, this is based on the pope who was the inspiration for the Godfather (Pope Alexander VI). It follows the pope and his family—wife and kids—as they kill and scheme their way to the top. Well, actually they are at the top. So they just scheme and kill. It has been enjoyable so far, but not as good as The Tudors, which it replaced.
The Cape: Lame, but if you like comic books and don’t mind lame, you might like it.
Fairly Legal/Harry’s Law: Two new legal shows. I couldn’t take Fairly Legal. The main character always gets in trouble because she would rather negotiate than lawyer. Yawn. Harry’s Law is a little over the top, but some of the in-court sarcasm is pretty good. Main character is played by Kathy Bates. She is the best part of the show by far.
Bored to Death: Writer becomes detective and gets himself in crazy situations. Basically this whole show can be summed up by saying Jason Schwartzman, Ted Danson, Zach Galifianakis, and pot. Enough said.
Game of Thrones: Just watched the first one last night. Seems like a winner. It is a medieval fantasy with seven kingdoms based on a series of books I did not read. Either I had you at medieval fantasy, or you have already skipped this. It has big Lord of the Rings type production, which is the most important thing with something big like this.
Ultimately, you are in San Diego for the summer—don’t watch TV, go to the beach. Except for the final season of Entourage. You have to watch that. Oh, and Weeds. And It’s Always Sunny . . .