Tuesday, September 9, 2008

My Fall Schedule: Tuesday Nights...

8 p.m. - 90210 - (The CW) I'm trying, guys; I'm really trying to like you and to root for you and to want to see you around for as many years as the original-- even if only because I like so many of the stars, and I want to see them succeed. Jessica Walter is basically playing Lucille Bluth again, and any opportunity to bring back those characters is one in which I will revel; Jennie Garth is always sweet and funny; I wanted to be Lori Laughlin as a child, and given her on-screen counterpart now, I want to be her again; Tristan Wilds finally has a chance to play a lighter character and show off a softer side; and it's just nice to see Rob Estes-- period. The problem is that the majority of the cast-- the new teens-- are not very likeable at all, and yet they are the ones in the front-burner storylines. Riding the line between angsty teen melodrama and glitzy, glamorous L.A. soap opera, 90210 has its moments, mostly due to its actors stepping in and putting their feet down (like when Garth refused to jump into bed with a guy in the pilot because she thought it would have depicted Kelly as an insecure woman who hadn't grown at all from the character Aaron Spelling created), but what worries me is what's to come, especially when I hear things like schemes for getting out of contracts by "acting like a brat" spill out of the mouths of said dislikeable teens. So because this show, like Gossip Girl, is just proving why I don't want teenagers-- especially teen girls-- I will only stick with it until The Biggest Loser returns. (Next New Episode Tonight)

8 p.m. - The Biggest Loser: Families - (NBC) Undoubtedly I will give up with 90210 early on because although I have a desire to be "in the know" when it comes to all things pop culture, I have a much greater desire to spend my time with programming that is meaningful and change-inducing. The Biggest Loser makes me cry every week; it gives me hope that anyone and everyone can get healthy and make their lives anything they want it to be. In this special season of the series, one trainer will work with overweight spouses while the other (they haven't announced who will work with whom yet) will work with a parent-child combination. Break out the Kleenex; I sense a very lucrative potential product tie-in! (Season Premiere September 16)

9 p.m. - Privileged - (The CW) JoAnna Garcia has brown hair now. That's how you know she is trying to be a "serious actress" with her new drama series about a Yale grad who takes a job as a live-in tutor to two heiress sisters-- yet another in the ever-growing line of those shows about wealthy, trendy, uberly out-of-reach teens. So how seriously can we take her when the show is based on a lukewarm young adult novel and focuses so much on bikini-clad rich kids, designer sunglasses, and sprawling mansions? Well, I'll be able to tell you all soon because although I am extremely skeptical about enjoying this show, I will watch it anyway. After all, I think I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least give it a shot because I learned my lesson with Gilmore Girls: I didn't think I'd like that show either, but I still can't stop raving about or quoting it. Plus, I will watch anything Brian Hallisay does, including his awful straight-to-DVD movie alongside Paris Hilton; he's just that good. So I now have something to fill the commercial breaks during the second half of The Biggest Loser! (Series Premiere Tonight)

10 p.m. - Without A Trace - (CBS) Steven Weber joins the cast this season as the newly demoted Jack (Anthony LaPaglia)'s boss, which is reason enough to believe new life will be breathed into the series, which at the start of its seventh year could have easily been on last legs after last season's convolution. Poppy Montgomery's pregnancy threw a monkeywrench into her character (not to mention screen-time), sure, but the inclusion of her real-life boyfriend Adam Kaufman just took it down an unnecessary road. This year, though, the show is planning to spice things up by looking at events from the victim's points of view, which should make for some remarkable performances, and possibly guest stars in general. It's a gamble, and it might not work, but it appears this procedural, too, is at least getting back on track with its focus being on the individual cases and not the relationships between co-workers. (Season Premiere September 23)

10 p.m. - Law & Order: SVU - (NBC) The producers are being surprisingly quiet about what will go on in this remarkable tenth season of the first Law & Order spin-off which only makes me wonder if it's the season Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Stabler (Christopher Meloni) will finally hook up. She will still have to deal with the emotional turmoil from going undercover last year and coming thisclose to getting raped, and he will have his own obstacles to get across when Ellen Burstyn pops in as his estranged mother, but the producers can't tease something for so long and not follow through eventually, even if its just with a rogue kiss after a particularly intense stand-off with a suspect. Oh yeah, and resolution with Ice-T's request for transfer will occur; I just hope B.D. Wong appears in more episodes than usual. (Season Premiere September 23)

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