As May sweeps and the current television season ends, here are some unsolicited and highly opinionated thoughts on some finales:
24 – One of the better seasons. Great villains. Chloe didn’t die. (Neither did Kim but there’s always next year) Jack Bauer firmly established himself as this generation’s James Bond. But considering how many people perished along the way this season, if a nuclear warhead had hit San Francisco the death toll would still be less.
WILL & GRACE – the NBC promo department really cranked up the maudlin meter. Oh, the sadness. Like saying goodbye to a cherished member of the family. Come on! It’s WILL & GRACE. Every year we see the same promos for that year’s exiting cash cow. And the same schmaltzy shots of the cast crying and hugging. But it’s not MASH and it’s not CHEERS and it’s not SEINFELD. The country didn’t stop because the WILL & GRACE finale was on. And they won’t when ACCORDING TO JIM goes off either.
AMERICAN IDOL – Poor Kathryn. Not that she lost to America’s new puppy, that was a given. But her hometown reception the week before was pathetic. Sure Taylor and Elliott come from small towns where to draw a huge crowd one need only wave a Confederate flag while Kathryn hails from Southern California where you can’t swing a dead cat and not hit a cast member of ER, but still, she deserved better than fifty kids showing up for what was probably a mandatory assembly in the gym. They gave a fucking star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame to Winnie the Pooh. Kathryn received the turnout for a supermarket opening.
PRISON BREAK – finally! They broke! Hopefully, Michael will drop his pants and we see he has a tattoo of the New York City subway map on his legs. (If any network would like to do the reality show version of this show just put cameras in Richard Hatch and Michelle Rodriguez’s cells).
DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES – Disappointing second season. But help may be on the way. A noted FRASIER writer is joining the writing staff. Expect the show to be wittier, pithier, and with far more dinner parties.
SURVIVOR – yawn.
THE APPRENTICE -- I always Tivo and fast forward through commercials. And since this show is now just an hour long excuse for product placement I find myself fast forwarding through the whole show. So yawn.
WEST WING – If everyone talked just a little slower they could still get two more years out of the same number of scripts. I loved the idea of building a show around a smart compassionate U.S. president. Aaron Sorkin created a wonderful fairy tale.
ALIAS – Everyone on that show has gone on to better things. Jennifer Garner now has to play her most dangerous alias ever – Ben Affleck’s wife.
THE 70’s SHOW – Deserved more fanfare than it received. Fox’s best live action sitcom ever. Destined to be a mainstay paired with HAPPY DAYS on TV LAND.
LOST – Best show on network TV. A master class in storytelling. But now that the season is over what will ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY do if it can’t devote at least one issue a month to ridiculous predictions and dissection of the clues? And their Oscar speculation issue doesn’t hit the stands till mid June.
CSI – They’ll never top last year’s finale written and directed by Quentin Tarentino. Next year maybe get Spielberg to do it. He can have Grissom and the gang to prove there was a holocaust.
TODAY SHOW – Katie leaving IS a big deal. It IS like saying goodbye to a member of the family. End of an era and all that. I’m sure her farewell show will end with a touching bittersweet montage – Katie clowning, Katie on assignment in a war zone, Katie interviewing Cruise. Wouldn’t it be great if it ended with her colonoscopy?
The summer is here. Oh God. That means BIG BROTHER.