New feature: Every week I’ll recap the new and old shows I watched, very briefly. Comment if you’d like to see this feature go more in depth.
The Simpsons: “Homer Goes to Prep School” (C+)
Though I certainly dug Tom Waits’ cameo, this episode feels like a retread (on The Simpsons? Get out of town!) of an episode that only aired last year. It also felt a little disingenuous that mob mentality didn’t rule for once in Springfield. Still, I’m much more apologetic about recent episodes of this show than most.
Happy Endings: “Fowl Play/Date” (B+), “Ordinary Extraordinary Love” (B)
We’re getting a double dose of this show now, which, regardless of what Paul Lee says, means this show is nearly done at ABC (pick it up, TBS! Pick it up!). So I’ll tkae what I can get. The former is vintage Happy Endings, but the latter had a storyline that felt a little too inconsequential, even for a show that features little in the way of substance. But I’m still giving it serious points for how Max has been developing into something less cartoonish this season. Let’s hope some network will continue that evolution into next season.
Modern Family: “New Year’s Eve” (B+)
I write about this show more extensively at The Perpetual Post. But briefly: This episode was far edgier than the show ever gets and I totally dug that. I would have given this a higher grade had we not seen the kids at all, but the writers will always cram in a storyline to make sure we get to see every character every week. That Goldilocks joke killed, too.
The Simpsons (Season 5): “Marge on the Lam” (A-)
I’m following along as A.V. Club writer Nathan Rabin revisits the prime years of the greatest show ever. While I hadn’t forgotten about this episode like he had, I still think this is one of the hidden gems. It’s tremendously funny, but doesn’t have the reputation, gimmicky storyline or big guest star that causes it to be mentioned among the very best episodes.
Girls (Season 1): “Welcome to Bushwick,” “Weirdos Need Girlfriends Too,” “Leave Me Alone,” “She Did” (average: A)
Finally caught up in time to watch the season two premiere Sunday. I must say, this show grew on me in a way few ever have. It’s also the best debut season of a comedy since Arrested Development. It didn’t need time to find its voice. Lena Dunham already had it down pat. It did take a while to get used to
some all of the characters asshole-ish tendencies, but it very accurately captures what it’s like–whether you’re privileged or not–to be in your 20’s and regularly confused, frustrated and prone to making the same mistakes over and over again. Bravo, Lena.