First Quarter Report Card for ‘Elementary,’ The New Normal,’ ‘The Mindy Project’ and ‘Nashville’

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal ®

You can only tell so much in a show’s pilot. You can sense the potential or lack thereof. You might know at a gut level whether you’re interested in the characters or not.  But really the pilot is merely a peek into what could be. I had no idea when I watched the pilot for Buffy the Vampire Slayer that it would turn into the landmark TV. But I knew from the moment I watched the first episode of Arrested Development that it would most likely become one of my favorite TV shows of all time.

With that in mind, let’s check back in on four new shows that have been picked up for the full season.

The New Normal (Tuesday at 9:30 p.m. on NBC): To my utter surprise, I’m still watching The New Normal.  So there’s definitely something there that keeps me coming back each week. Perhaps it’s just to see what Babe Wood Shania will do next. Wood is the discovery of the season. And while the show isn’t as funny as it needs to be to actually be a comedy, it has, at times, been surprisingly poignant. I loved the episode the October 23 episode that found Bryan and David searching for godparents.  When the show tones down its preachiness, it is actually capable of providing thoughtful commentary.

But, as much as I hate to say it, Ellen Barkin’s Nana is a huge, almost insurmountable problem for the show. There’s some sort of graduate student thesis that could be written about why Sue Sylvester works as a character on Glee and Nana doesn’t.  Both women make absolutely outrageous homophobic and racist comments. Both women have no problem doling out vicious, personal attacks.  Both women are, on the surface, beyond offensive. Yet Sue has always provided great entertainment value. Nana is cringe-inducing. Perhaps it’s because The New Normal has given Nana no redeeming qualities. She is the cruelest to her own granddaughter. Seeing Sue with her sister let the audience know that she had a loving side to her and I always feel that, on some level, Sue actually cared about her students.  Nana is merely angry at the world and that much vitriol in an endless loop is tedious to watch.  Nana needs to go back to Ohio.

The Mindy Project (Tuesday at 9:30 p.m. on FOX): There is so much that is not working about this comedy and it starts with Mindy Kaling. As I said in the review I wrote for Paste Magazine this week, Kaling’s character becomes increasingly unlikeable with each passing week. The crux of the problem is that she’s playing a doctor -not just any kind of doctor, an OB/GYN.  If you want women to watch your show, you really can’t mess around with that. Most women have a trusted relationship with their OB/GYN.  These are the doctors who know your most personal information. They see you through your pregnancy and the delivery of your baby.  As I’ve always said, I don’t need a ton of realism from my TV shows. But I need to believe that Mindy actually is a doctor. (At least to the same degree I believe Phil Dunphy is actually a real estate agent or Robin Sherbatsky is actually a news anchor). So I want to watch a comedy where Mindy is actually good at her job and cares about her patients.  I want to believe the premise the show is built on – that Mindy has her professional life together but her personal life is a mess.  Dr. Lahiri and her colleagues don’t seem to ever work. Mindy is vapid and vain. I wouldn’t trust her to paint my nails.  She would probably stop half way through so she could chase a boy or try on outfits. There are so many other problems with the show (beginning with the painful underutilization of Anna Camp) but if your main character isn’t working, the rest of your show isn’t going to work.  Mindy Lahiri needs a profession where other people’s lives aren’t at stake. I fear the character’s career choice is fatal error from which the show cannot recover.

Elementary (Thursdays at 10 p.m. on CBS): The biggest problem this crime drama is facing is that it keeps casting familiar faces as the weekly bad guy.  The show films in New York City. It needs to take a page from the Law & Order playbook and start casting more theater actors – faces that viewers don’t know. Because if we see David Costabile, who has had major arcs on Breaking Bad and Damages, as a janitor, we’re not fooled. We know he is probably the bad guy.  And if we solve the crime before Sherlock does every week, we are going to get bored. My other issue with the show is that Lucy Liu and Jonny Lee Miller are giving incredibly strong performances but the series is struggling to integrate the mystery part of the show with the interpersonal aspects of the character’s lives.  It is often clumsy and awkward.

Nashville (Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on ABC): This was my favorite new show of the season and, for the most part, it has lived up to my expectations. I’m enjoying the continuing development of Rayna’s character. Given my affection for Friday Night Lights, I expected Rayna to be a tough-as-nails/heart-of-gold type character. But she’s evolved into something much more complex than that.  I like that I don’t always like Rayna. Deacon, who she clearly loves, calls her from jail and she declines the call? That seems awful but it also tells me quite a bit about their shared history. Maybe this is the fifth, tenth, or twentieth time that has happened. I would like to see Eric Close’s Teddy be less of a pawn in everyone else’s game.  But the character I’m having the biggest problem with is Scarlett. As much as I love Scarlett’s music, I’m not that into her character. Her little-girl-lost act is grating and so is her stand-by-her-man nonsense – at least she stopped standing by her man last night. It’s tricky to play a character that fragile and innocent and still make her compelling. So far Scarlett is the show’s weakest link.

What new shows are you still watching? How do you think they’re doing? Talk about it below. If you’ve heard a great quote or seen a terrific familiar face, email me and let me know. And remember to sign up to follow my blog (upper right hand corner) if you want to be part of my December TV Swag Giveaway.

Bring These Actors Back to TV

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal ®

I get attached to TV shows and when they’re gone, I often have a hard time letting go. Until recently my TiVo still had a season pass manager to Friday Night Lights. (I liked the idea that it was constantly searching for new episodes. I held out hope that maybe it would find one).

Every year I’m thrilled when TV actors I adore are in new projects.  But the TV landscape is still missing some of my favorite actors. I’m not talking about the obvious choices. Clearly Josh Holloway and Kyle Chandler need to be back on TV. I’m talking about the lesser-known actors who played such a distinct and memorable part that their show would not have been the same without them.

Here are my picks for the faces that have been away from TV for far too long.

Amber Benson (Tara Maclay on Buffy the Vampire Slayer): Benson was utterly fantastic as Willow’s patient, loving girlfriend. She’s an actress who can express so much with her plaintive eyes. I’m perplexed that she hasn’t landed as a series regular somewhere.

Janel Moloney (Donna Moss on The West Wing): Together with Bradley Whitford’s Josh, Moloney created one of the great will-they-or-won’t-they couples of the last decade. Her rat-a-tat banter with Josh was part of the reason The West Wing was such memorable television. Aaron Sorkirn tried to recreate the same rapport with his characters on both Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and The Newsroom but Moloney was one of a kind.

Luke Macfarlane (Scotty Wandell on Brothers & Sisters):  Is it wrong than he was my favorite Walker? With his sympathetic face and kind demeanor, Macfarlane quietly broke ground as one half of TV’s most realistic gay couples.

Keiko Agena (Lane Kim on Gilmore Girls): A girl couldn’t ask for a better best friend than Lane. She was loyal yet independent. Supportive but always willing to offer constructive criticism. Agena infused Lane with a believable likeability and also added depth to a character that could have been a TV stereotype.

Jamie Kaler and Michael Bunin (Mike and Kenny on My Boys): You know all the hilarious exchanges between the guys on New Girl? The boys on My Boys were doing that long before Jess met Schmidt and the gang. Real life buddies Kaler and Bunin have a great time riffing with each other. They had their own show last year on DirectTV, On Deck with Jamie and Mike, but I would love to see the duo whooping it up in a comedy again. Don’t tell the others, but they were always my favorite boys.

Bryan Batt (Salvatore Romano on Mad Men): Every season of Mad Men, I think “this will be the season Salvatore makes his triumphant return.” His departure from the series, while completely reflective of the time, was so abrupt. Batt brought a lovely pathos of a man leading a duplicitous life.

Who would you like to see back on TV? Talk about it below. And remember to follow my blog by entering your email in the top right-hand corner. I’m gearing up for a big December TV swag giveaway for the followers of my blog.

An interview with Bellamy Young, the First Lady of ‘Scandal’

Credit – Angelo Kritikos

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal ®

Last week I had the chance to talk to the delightful Bellamy Young, First Lady Mellie Grant on Scandal. In case  you missed the great news, ABC recently ordered a full season of Scandal so we will get 22 episodes this season. That means viewers will be treated to much more of the First Lady’s devious scheming.

Ms. Young and I had a lovely conversation, although the North Carolina native was somewhat tight-lipped about what is coming up on the juicy drama (which airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on ABC). She laughed and told me she’s had to go through publicity training to learn to not give away the show’s secrets. But she did have lots to say about the Grant’s turbulent marriage, where their two children are and what it’s like to be fake pregnant.

TV Gal: I’m always surprised by how much sympathy I have for Mellie. How difficult is it to play a character who can be so awful without alienating her from viewers?

Bellamy Young: I’m blessed because our writers are incredible. They always put the pain underneath the anger. It’s always coming from a place of being so hurt and there’s no one who can’t relate to that. We’re never worse than to the people that we love in those dark, dark moments. It really does feel like Tony [Goldwyn, who plays President Fitzgerald Grant] and I have decades of history between us and there have been so many good times. We have two lovely children, a third on the way and you remember that marriages go through a lot and we’re meeting them in a really ugly moment. But there have been so many other times before that. It’s just one sort of dip in the dance that they’re doing together that’s not the prettiest color on either one of them but they’re still very much a team. It’s like taffy you can pull it any direction and it stays intact.

TV Gal: Obviously you’re not a conniving First Lady, what is it about Mellie that you connect to when you play her?

Young: Mellie couldn’t be any more different than I am. On some levels that is so freeing – to be this completely self-confident, my way or the highway, women is kind of a thrill. In terms of the emotional truth so much of it resonates with me – the pain of it all. I’m human. People have hurt me and when they hurt me I lash out. There’s nothing that I don’t understand about where Mellie is coming from in those moments of abject pain and desperation.

TV Gal: This season you were promoted to series regular. What has that experience been like?

Young: It’s truly my first time as a bride. I can’t think of a way to be any luckier. It is a dream and they just keep writing incredible things for me to do. It’s so much fun it almost blows my mind.

This is an incredible next level to be able to relax into something. You never get to have these rich conversations when you’re guesting. It’s very very different when you get to build these lives with a core group of people with the writers and the actors. To live with someone for so long it starts to come from your marrow, from inside your thigh bone, what Mellie would do. You really know her. You start to speak up for yourself and  your character.

The genius and the joy of it is that with every script comes a new revelation. You kind of add that layer to the onion, you get to feel like you have a really complicated, breathing existence.

The other side of this honestly is getting talk to people like you about things like this. I’ve never had an experience and been commenting on an experience at the same time. That has been a huge learning curve.

TV Gal: You worked with [executive producer] Shonda Rhimes before on Grey’s Anatomy, right?

Young: It was actually the Grey’s Anatomy  episode that was the spin- off for Private Practice. It was a two hour episode and I was in the Private Practice part of it. My arc on that episode went from absolutely comedic to absolutely tragic.

TV Gal: You mentioned to me that you are really excited about the eighth episode of the season which you recently completed filming. Can you tell me anything about that or anything else that is coming up on the show?

Young: We have another flashback episode coming up. That was one of everybody’s favorite episodes last year to do and to watch. And again it just delivers in spades this year. It just informs all the drama and wonderment that’s going on in real time so much. The history just makes it that much more angsty and intense.

Mellie has her fingers in some very important pies coming up.  There’s some Abby and David juiciness. We’ll see if there’s any future for Senator Edison Davis and Olivia. We have more Cyrus and James to look forward.

TV Gal: What about Fitz and Mellie’s children? Where are they?

Young: It will be explained in an upcoming episode and hopefully we will see them. They’re in boarding school. Tony and I think outside of Santa Barbara where my family is from. I get that question increasingly. There’s a baby inside of Mellie so people think, “Um is she going to be an okay Mom?”

TV Gal: What’s it like being pregnant on the show?

Young: I love being fake pregnant. As an actor you’re always flummoxed about what to do with your hands, and you can put them on your belly, rub your belly. You can rub that belly and sort of look beatific and say the most hideous things.  It’s a joy plus you don’t have to worry about what you ate, if your belly is fat , if your butt is big. It’s just sort the greatest sort of gift.

TV Gal: Have you filmed the arrival of the blessed event yet? Will we get to see Mellie deliver the baby?

Young: I have to plead the fifth on that one.

TV Gal: The entire cast is very active on Twitter when the episodes air you tweet in both east coast and west coast time.

Young: It’s just incredible to talk to people who are watching the shows in real time. It’s almost like theater again. You get to  really see how it’s all landing with people. (You can follow her @BellamyYoung)

TV Gal: I know Scandal keeps you very busy. Is there anything else  you are working on?

Young:  I will be back sometime this season for two more episodes of Criminal Minds [as Hotchner’s love interest Beth]. And I executive produced and co-starred with David Arquette in the movie The Cottage which is now out on DVD.

TV’s Best Tertiary Characters

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal®

How do you know you’re a great character?

There’s a fan outcry when you aren’t around.

Since Homeland began its second season, viewers have been plagued with questions:  Will Carrie realize she was right? Will Brody get caught? But perhaps the biggest question troubling viewers was: Where is Virgil?

The beloved surveillance expert brilliantly played by David Marciano finally returned on Sunday.  I actually clapped when he came on the screen. There is something so wonderful about Virgil and his relationship with Carrie. He’s exasperated when he should be, protective when he needs to be, and funny when the show is in desperate need of comic relief. Plus, he’s kind of the only character besides Carrie that I truly trust at this point.

But the really interesting thing about Virgil is that he’s obviously not a main character (that’s Carrie and Brody). But he’s not a secondary character either (lsuch as David Estes or Mike). He’s a tertiary character. And to make a tertiary character stand out you’ve got to be really good.

Here are some of my other favorite tertiary characters on television:

First Lady Mellie Grant (Bellamy Young) on Scandal: I adore Mellie. First of all, she’s a woman in the right. Her husband, the President of the United States, cheated on her and continues to be hung up on a woman he cannot and should not have.  Secondly, would you want to cross her? Young brilliantly pulls off the tricky act of being simultaneously sympathetic and devious. The scene in the limo where she asks her husband to forgive her? Heartbreaking. The scene where she tells her husband that she needs to start making plans for her future.  A little terrifying.  The season Young was promoted to series regular and is rightly getting so much screen time that she’s almost a secondary character.

Grizz (Grizz Chapman) and Dot Com (Kevin Brown) on 30 Rock: As Tracy’s entourage, the pair have provided some of the comedy’s best laughs with their droll commentary on their boss’s ridiculous antics. They’re the voice of reason not just in Tracy’s world but sometimes for the entire series. I would so watch the Grizz and Dot Com Show. Now that 30 Rock is ending, isn’t it about time for a spinoff?

Cora (Barbara Hershey) on Once Upon a Time: How do you make viewers feel sorry for the Evil Queen? Give her a mother who is worse than she is. Hershey is wonderfully evil. I’m so glad she is still around this season causing trouble. Also bonus points for the fact that Hershey actually looks like she could be Lana Parrilla’s mother.

Brad Bottig (Brock Ciarlelli) on The Middle: As Sue’s enthusiastic former boyfriend, Ciarlelli makes me smile every time he comes on the screen.  He also exemplifies what makes The Middle such a fantastic show.  Brad could have been a one note joke – Sue doesn’t realize that her boyfriend is probably gay. But he has become so much more than that. The Middle thrives because it’s a very funny show with humor based in truth and characters we know. I always say there’s a little bit of Sue in anyone who has ever been a teenage girl. And I definitely had friends such as Brad when I was in high school. He’s simply a fantastic character.

Burt Hummel (Mike O’Malley) on Glee: O’Malley provides some of Glee’s best moments. He is my favorite television dad.  Here’s hoping there’s a holiday episode in our future where Kurt goes home to see his dad.

Who are some of your favorite tertiary characters? Talk about it below.

Happy Endings, Don’t Trust the B ____ in Apartment 23 and Nashville

Here’s my three-part TV viewing assignment for the week:

There are times when I truly believe an episode of television was created just for me. It’s like television’s way of saying “thanks Amy. We’re glad you’re here.”  And the premiere of Don’t Trust the B____ in Apartment 23, which returns for its second season tonight at 9:30 p.m. on ABC, is one of those times.  James Van Der Beek, who continues to hilariously spoof himself, reluctantly decides he will do a Dawson’s Creek reunion.  I don’t want to ruin the jokes by telling you any more than that. But any show that can reference The Facts of Life Goes to Paris and stage a fame intervention is my kind of show. You must watch.

I have championed Happy Endings since it premiered. Dave writing thank you notes after being left at the alter is one of the funniest television moments ever (“Darkness reigns. Hope gurgles out its dying breath. Thank you for the beautiful crockpot.”).  As it returns for its third season (tonight at 9 p.m. on ABC), Dave (Zachary Knighton) and Elisha Cuthbert (Elisha Cuthbert) are back together but keeping it casual. They’re this decade’s Ross and Rachel if you didn’t think Ross and Rachel should actually be together. The show has become more Scrubs-like as the seasons have progressed (more totally out there flights of fancy humor) but the writing remains razor sharp. What other show has hilarious lines such as “You two have fun talking like Scott Caan’s groomsmen.”  Again, you must watch.

People, people, people. What is going on? Why oh why is Nashville (Wednesday at 10 p.m. on ABC) on the bubble? Why aren’t you watching the best new show of the season? This is starting to remind me of Lone Star. Talk to me.  Why aren’t you watching?

That’s all for today. Remember to follow my blog so you will know every time I have a new post. And on Thursday I’ll have this week’s best familiar faces and quotes so if you’re heard a great quote or seen a familiar face email me about them through my contact page.

Am I Breaking Up With the TV Bad Boy?

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal®

I never dated a bad boy. And I definitely didn’t marry one. Really, the worst thing my husband ever does is forget to run the dishwasher at night.

But, oh, how I have loved the TV bad boy.  The bad boy on TV makes for great viewing while never actually causing you any emotional damage.  Here’s a chorological list of my long- term relationship with the TV bad boy:

Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210: That sexy scowl! Those sideburns! Dylan was my first TV bad boy and, as the saying goes, you never forget your first. When Kelly famously told Brandon and Dylan, “I choose me,” I was proud of her girl-power decision but I thought she was a little nuts to let this brooding bad boy go. The rumor that Luke Perry and Jennie Garth are now dating in real life has caused me to nearly explode with happiness.

Pacey Whitter on Dawson’s Creek: Before you question whether Pacey was really a bad boy, remember that when we first met him, he was sleeping with his teacher. Good boys don’t sleep with their teachers. Pacey was always my first choice for Joey (and honestly now that Katie Holmes is a single again, he still is). I get chills thinking about when he told Joey he was going to kiss her and then started counting backwards from 10. Sigh.

Spike on Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Spike was so very wrong for Buffy. I knew it. She knew it. All of Hellmouth knew it.  Their often violent relationship was one of the most dysfunctional ones on TV.  But when Buffy tells him Spike she loves him right before he dies and he replies, “No you don’t but thanks for saying it,” it breaks my heart every time.

Logan Echolls on Veronica Mars: Logan just couldn’t get out of his own way. He was the perfect storm of a bad boy – troubled home situation (very troubled!), the propensity to lash out at the ones who loved him most, and a soulful stare that made even my remote blush. When he was bad, he was very, very bad but when he was good, Veronica couldn’t do any better.

Sawyer on Lost: I so wanted Sawyer to smile his sly smile and come up with a nickname for me. Maybe he’d call me Carmela because of my Italian last name. Or maybe he’d dub me “Lamy” because I would be the one always telling him that his cockamamie plan was DANGEROUS. Sawyer was the best kind of bad boy – his brass exterior hid a damaged, sweet soul.

Tim Riggins on Friday Night Lights: Let me be clear: I have never, ever liked long hair on guys. Until, Tim Riggins. I wanted to reach into the TV and tuck his hair behind his ears. He could have worn his hair in French braids and I would have thought that was fantastic. His romance with Lyla was oh so wrong – she was dating his best friend who had just been paralyzed. But, you couldn’t help but root for Riggins to succeed. Texas forever man.

Damon Salvatore on The Vampire Diaries: Obviously. What I love most about Damon is that the character completely made me forget Ian Somerhalder had ever been anyone else.  Boone who?  I will admit that I haven’t kept up with show but I know if I ever visited Mystic Falls, I would want to hang out with Damon not Stefan.

So that’s many years loving the TV bad boy. But something has happened to me. I totally rooted for Jake on Awkward. Not Matty of I- treated- Jenna-terribly- but- am- really- sweet-and-misunderstood fame. But Jake of I-always-treated-Jenna-with-the-upmost-respect-and-have-always-been-nice-to-her fame. I rooted for Jake long before Jenna broke his heart. And Jake could never, ever be a bad boy.

What is going on? Am I breaking up with the TV bad boy? Am I suddenly maturing? Are there no good bad boys left? It’s like I don’t even know the TV viewer I’ve become.  But I’m definitely on Team Jake. Just don’t tell Dylan, Pacey, Spike, Logan, Sawyer, Riggins or Damon that I said that.

Who is your favorite TV bad boy? Vote below.

‘Glee’ Returns for Season 4!

CR: Kwaku Alston / FOX

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal®

Adding new characters to an existing and popular show is tough to pull off.

Sometimes it’s an absolute failure. I’m pretty sure no one shed a tear when Nikki and Paolo died on Lost.

Sometimes it just doesn’t quite work. I usually always enjoy James Spader but his character on The Office never really came together. Everyone involved with the show seemed to know from the beginning that Robert California wouldn’t be around that long.

But sometimes a character addition can take a show to a whole new level. It’s hard to even imagine Lost without Ben but Michael Emerson didn’t come to the island until the fourteenth episode of the second season.

I didn’t start really enjoying The Big Bang Theory until Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch joined the gang.

As the photo suggests, Glee enters its fourth season (tonight at 9 p.m. on FOX) at a crossroads. To keep the show relevant and believable (as believable as a show like Glee can be that is), the series had to let the seniors graduate. That means, of course, a whole new crop of students need to be successfully introduced in a relatively short amount of time. Will you become attached to them? Will I? I’m not sure.

The show also made the interesting, and I would say creatively brave, decision to follow the students who left the New Directions behind. So tonight you’ll see Rachel in New York where her new dance teacher (Kate Hudson) is not amused by her antics and Kurt (Chris Colfer) stuck in Lima working as a barista.

The big question is: Can the series pull off what are essentially two shows simultaneously?  Tonight’s premiere (9 p.m. on FOX) inspires confidences that it is possible while not entirely quieting all my fears. Now the Glee cast is more unwieldy than it ever was (and it was pretty unwieldy to begin with) and I’m concerned that some characters won’t get the story lines or the numbers they deserve while others will just become an afterthought (I mean how often did we see Mercedes’ boyfriend last year?). And, be forewarned, there are quite a few notable characters missing in tonight’s premiere.

But,concerns aside, I did like the premiere and here’s why:

  1. Kate Hudson is fantastic as Rachel’s dance teacher Cassandra July. Cassandra is viciously honest and it’s kind of great to have Rachel realize that her talent and charm might not be enough. Based on the premiere, I think this could be the role of Hudson’s career. I never really gave Hudson a lot of thought but I plan on paying close attention to Cassandra.
  2. There’s one new student at McKinley High that I’m VERY excited about. I won’t spoil who it is but I will say that I was so rooting for him/her to enroll this year.
  3. Mike O’Malley. Any time he’s on the show, it’s great. He’s great. The scene tonight between Kurt and his dad is so poignant that I double dare you not to cry.
  4. The musical numbers. These have always been the show’s get out of jail free card. Even the worst episodes usually have one or two great numbers. And tonight every number is pretty fantastic.

So while I’m not necessarily convinced this new format will work, I am cautiously optimistic. And I applaud the show for attempting this – for not having the students on a six year high school plan, for not trying to keep all the graduates in one place (I’m glad they didn’t all decide to go to, for example, Lima University), and for taking a realistic (again realistic as defined by Glee) approach to how life really works. People move on in new directions – to new places, new friends and new adventures.  If Glee can pull this off, it will be an impressive feat.  One worth singing about.

Make sure to follow me on Twitter (@amytvgal) or follow this blog to get notified every time I have a new post.

I’m back!

By Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal®

Hello! I’m back!

As many of you know, I stopped writing the TV Gal® blog after the birth of my daughter in 2010. But now that she’s older (because really can’t two-and-a-half year olds practically raise themselves?), I decided it was high time to revive the TV Gal® blog. I’ve missed talking TV with all of you.

We. Have. So. Much. To. Discuss.

Let’s start with all the TV that happened since I last talked to you:

  • I liked the finale of Lost. Maybe it’s because I was so sleep deprived when it aired but the ending worked for me. But I’m totally ready to discuss something that’s over two years old. Bring it on.
  • I also liked the first season of The Killing. I wasn’t even angry that they didn’t tell us who killed Rosie Larsen. But the second season was a colossal collapse. Everything went to hell in a rainy hand basket that was wearing an oversized sweater. In keeping with the outdated technology of the show, let’s discuss this via a rotary phone and a fax machine.
  • I totally missed the memo about Downton Abbey and am very late to the Downton Abbey party. I’ve watched season one. I love Mr. Bates and have become slightly obsessed with what the rich did all day. They didn’t work. They didn’t cook. They didn’t clean. They didn’t even have to dress themselves. Nice life but I think I would be so bored.
  • I wish you all could have been there for me with Ringer. I watched every single episode and I totally needed a support group.
  • I can’t decide if I love or hate the fact that Bunheads is basically Gilmore Girls Redux.
  • While we were apart I completely broke up with American Idol. If the show actually adds Keith Urban as a judge I might come back.
  • Here are the shows that premiered while I was gone that you totally need to be watching.
  1. Homeland
  2. New Girl
  3. Switched at Birth
  4. Awkward
  5. Revenge
  6. Scandal
  7. The Glee Project
  • Here are the shows that premiered and were cancelled while I was gone that I wish I had been around to advocate for:
  1. Terriers
  2. Huge
  3. Detroit 1-8-7
  4. Lonestar

But enough about the past, let’s talk about the plans for this new TV Gal® Blog. I plan on posting a new story every Tuesday and Thursday. I definitely hope to post more than twice a week but Tuesdays and Thursdays will be the days you can count on new content. If you follow me on Twitter (@amytvgal) or subscribe to this blog, you’ll know every time I have something new up. I also plan to bring back two of my most popular features: “Where Have I Seen Them Before” and “Quotes of the Week.”

I learned a long time ago that I can’t write about everything for everybody all of the time. But I will try to write about something for everybody most of the time. If you’re a fan of The Real Housewives franchise or think Here Comes Honey Boo Boo is hilarious,  you won’t find any talk about shows like that here. But if you count shows like Homeland, The Good Wife, New Girl, Cougar Town, Grey’s Anatomy, Glee, Parenthood, Raising Hope, Political Animals, The Office, Smash, Revenge, Awkward, Drop Dead Diva, The Middle, Modern Family, Mad Men,  Parks & Recreation and 30 Rock among your favorites, we will have lots to talk about.

And finally, if you’re reading this, it probably means that you kept up with me all the time I was away and for that I cannot thank you enough. The main thing I missed about writing the TV Gal® blog is the constant interaction with people who loved TV as much as I did. I’m glad to be back. Let the TV party begin!