Fall 2016 Television Preview: Sunday

E: Welcome to the best night on TV, the night when cable pulls out all the stops.  Want prestige adaptations?  We’ve got ’em. Costume dramas?  You’re on.  Movie stars?  Check.

C: And I… don’t think I watch anything on Sundays. I’m the low-brow one on this gang, I guess.

M: Something tells me I’ll give you a run for your money there. In Thursday’s post we mentioned how that night has fallen off as the most competitive, best night on TV. Well, Sundays was always up there, now it’s the king of the hill (though, not Hank Hill). But it’s become a weird hill. NBC has football (which until about 5 years ago was on ESPN), CBS decided to go with a slate of similar-but-different, law enforcement-y procedurals, with acronym-happy NCIS:LA, Madam Secretary and Elementary. FOX, as it has for years, has gone all comedy on Sunday, and ABC is kind of schizophrenic, with the fantasty-ish Once Upon a Time, followed by the very heavy Secrets and Lies, and ends with the extremely soapy Quantico. What a weird night.

E: Two things you won’t get this fall? Game of Thrones (it’s such a long wait until April) and The Good Wife (sigh).

M: Poor E, her long-time favorite show has come to an end. Was it at least a satisfying end?

E: Confession time: I have still not actually watched the final two episodes.

M and C: WHAAAT!?  whaaatminion

E: I know.

C: Okay but seriously, that is shocking.

M: Like, “end of The Sixth Sense if you hadn’t heard there was a twist” shocking.

E: I know! I was really glad they were ending it (boy it got really dark and unsatisfying in later seasons, even though it still gave us the most brilliant, topical cases of the week and the most vivid characterizations on television), and I was glad it went out on the creators’ terms, but I don’t know.  It’s too emotionally fraught.  What if I don’t like it?  I heard mixed reviews, and I just could not — still cannot — bring myself to watch.

C: Well, I can’t say I don’t sympathize. I’ve given up on some of the shows I was the most emotionally invested in because I couldn’t handle the loss of the things I liked about it. But, you know, usually with a season or two left, not two episodes. Poor E 😦 Continue reading

The Good Wife: Unmanned

E: Well. That, ladies and gentleman, is the episode we’ve been waiting all year for — maybe, for some people, the entire series.  That was the beginning of the end.  It feels like this entire season has been that slow, rickety ride up the hill, and now the roller coaster is zooming down, doing twists and turns and loops and shoots.  I kind of regret that I don’t have the time anymore for a transcript style recap, because damn, that was beautiful and heartbreaking and full to the brim of complete game changing insanity.

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The Good Wife: Shoot

E: Well, shoot.  Guest stars continue to shine (this week Blair Underwood as a grieving father), the grand jury investigation of Peter marches on, the show continues to explore hot button, cutting edge legal issues, and Alicia continues to explore her (ahem) relationship with Jason in increasingly risky ways.  Is there any shot that no one snapped a picture of the two of them in that pub?  I’m going to say none.  Where is all of this going?  With only five episodes left to the entire series, surely there’s got to be a turning point – a ramping up of the action – soon.

This week we have five basic plots: the political plot, the work manuevering plot, Grace’s college letter plot, the case of the week and the romance plot.  This was a lot of plotting; some bits were unworthy (sigh, stupid work plot) and some bits were really interesting but got short shrift.  And, yeah, I know, I’m way behind.  Let’s just slip back quietly into the world that was, though, and we’ll be up to speed in no time.

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The Good Wife: Hearing

E: Well, hmm.  On the one hand, there was a lot of humor to enjoy in this episode.  On the other, we have a heavy build up of old plots the show’s already done to death (Peter gets investigated!  there’s dissension in the ranks!) and wasted guest stars (and regulars, for that matter) clogging up the works.  Let’s break it down, shall we?  And just because I feel like it, I’m going to change up the format again as I do it.

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The Good Wife: Targets

E: It’s target overload on The Good Wife, with quarry military, political, and sexual in our sights.  Generally, however, this isn’t one of the stronger or more cohesive episodes; instead it’s a bunch of less-than-fully-realized plotlines thrown together to see what sticks.  Hey, we’ve only got a few episodes left!  Better re-use all the great guest stars!  Better toss in all the new ones we can fit!  Ever wanted to see Alicia on a secret military panel?  Let’s try that too!  More absurd interoffice dynamics?  Check!  Hot office sex?  Gotta have that.

Basically, there were three main plots in Targets, two of which were fascinating but unfortunately truncated by the frustrating and dumb third plot.  And I’m sure you can guess what I’m talking about.

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The Good Wife: Monday

E: Monday, back to the daily grind.  Monday, back to the same old.  Monday, when we start each week new.

This Monday Alicia goes home again; it’s not easy for anyone.  Lucca smarts under the heavy, stupid hand of corporate authority.  Diane and Cary lose their intelligence and their collective minds.  Millions of classic guest stars show their faces as the show moves toward its conclusion.

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The Good Wife: Judged

E: So that’s where we go from here.  To friendship.  To romance.  To forgiveness.  To collaboration.  That was really, really – well, some of it was a huge relief, and some of it I just don’t know.  (Notice that I said romance, and not love.)  There were bad wigs, tears (some of mine, some of the characters), drinks, and beautiful acting. And that’s all okay, because Alicia moved forward, which is maybe the most important thing.

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