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DVR Cleanup: Six TV Shows Worthy Of My Attention This Summer

I’ve been so engrossed with the aftermath of the iconic ‘Breaking Bad’ and ‘Dexter’ shows, that I haven’t had time to focus on some of this summer’s other fantastic (and some terrible) series. I finally have cleaned out the summer shows from my DVR just in time to give a few thoughts about six news-making programs. I’ve included the summaries for each show, for those looking to add to their Netflix Que. I could have added TNT’s Major Crimes and ABC’s Rookie Blue, but at this time they just weren’t worth a paragraph. With that said, enjoy…

Big Brother – CBS

[adinserter block=”1″]Contestants must compete against each other for a chance to win $500,000 in a house wired with cameras and microphones, capturing their every move for a TV and Internet audience. – IMDB.com

This was the WORST SEASON OF BIG BROTHER EVER!!! I am an avid watcher, and slight BB history buff, so I know of what I speak. I don’t understand why the producers didn’t inform these contestants that, THEY WERE GOING TO BE FILMED LIVE 24/7 FOR MONTHS!! Aaryn (the most offensive houseguest) was so racist and so clueless to her offensive behavior that it was nauseating. She eliminated both of the African American houseguest and had me scared for a moment that she was actually going to win this show!! A few episodes into the season, despite never needed to do so before, CBS had to start airing disclaimers that distanced the network from some of the comments made by the houseguests… INSANE!

Aaryn, Amanda, Spencer, and GinaMarie all lost their real-life jobs over racist and/or insensitive comments they made while inside the BB house. Who did the casting for this show? If you care to hear what some of the controversial houseguest had to say for themselves, the Hollywood Reporter has a good article getting some feedback from the horses’ mouths themselves. By the way, that’s not even what made this season so unwatchable. There was no one worthy of rooting for, no larger-than-life personalities, no physical beasts. To make matters even worse, a floater (Andy) actually ended up winning. Again, worst season ever!

Longmire – A&E

Walt Longmire is the dedicated and unflappable sheriff of Absaroka County, Wyoming. Widowed only a year, he is a man in psychic repair but buries his pain behind his brave face, unassuming grin and dry wit.- IMDB.com

This is the most slept on show on television. I was ecstatic to see the Dealine.com report that the show has already been renewed for a season 3. It is well deserved. This season was a little slow and plotting at times, but the last episode was just great. The big development was Henry (Lou Diamond Phillips) being arrested for what we believe is the murder of the man who murdered Walt’s (Robert Taylor) wife. They already revealed everything about that murder and how it was arranged (and not executed) but we still don’t know who the real killer is, which will make season 3 even more suspenseful. They did finally deal with the sheriff election (Walt won of course), and they teased us more with a future Walt and Vic (Katee Sackhoff) relationship. To top all of this stuff off… Branch (Bailey Chase) was almost killed… what a good (maybe great) season 2… I wish they would add 10 episodes to season 3 next summer.

Siberia – NBC

16 reality-show participants descend on Tunguska unknowing of the land’s mysterious past. These contestants, from varied walks of life, will attempt to battle the elements and each other in a quest to survive the harsh winter and claim a large cash prize. What is initially met with unbridled enthusiasm quickly turns to sheer panic as a series of strange events begin to occur. The contestants soon attribute the occurrences to ruses set up by the producers, even dismissing the death of a fellow contestant as accidental… With their safety threatened, competing contestants must band together in an effort to survive. – IMDB.com

In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that I didn’t pay attention to the description of this show before viewing it this summer. I saw that it was coming, and I put it on my DVR and just started watching. I WAS DUPED!! I thought this was a real reality show! Until there was a death at the end of episode one, I was all-in on this being better than Survivor… I AM AN IDIOT!! Even after the reveal that this was a scripted drama, the first 3-5 episodes was okay, I mean, I watched them live (or as close to live as I can possibly stand), and eagerly awaited the next episode. Then it got stupid and repetitive. Five straight episodes of “what are we doing here,” and “where are we,” mixed with, “I don’t think this is a game anymore,” wore on me. The only redeeming situation was the final minute of this first season when the fake reality show host was revealed to be alive and asked “What are you guys doing here?” It was as if he expected the surviving cast members to already be dead… very intriguing. It doesn’t seem that there will be much of a payoff as Spoiler TV has reported Siberia was quietly cancelled by NBC. There are some conflicting reports out there, so we’ll see if this show gets to keep telling their sometimes boring story.

Tyler Perry’s, The Haves and the Have Nots– OWN

A new television drama from the prolific writer, director and producer Tyler Perry. The show follows the complicated dynamic between the rich and powerful Cryer family and the hired help who work in their opulent Savannah, Georgia, mansion. – Own.com

Real men watch the Oprah Winfrey Network! I couldn’t help it, this show was so salacious and the buzz was so loud that I had no choice but to add it to my rotation. This show is even responsible for the Own Network finally turning a profit, according to the NY Post. Even the manliest of manly men can get lost in this drama – There’s a lot there to latch onto. There’s a sexy vixen Candace (Tika Sumpter) who’s having affair with her mother’s boss, who happens to be a judge, who orchestrated her brother’s arrest, who’s the father of her best friend, and who she’s currently pregnant by… Whew! I know someone reading my post on this blog might roll their eyes, but this is just the type of nighttime soap a “real man” could get into.

Under The Dome – CBS

An invisible and mysterious force field descends upon a small fictional town in the United States, trapping residents inside, cut off from the rest of civilization. The trapped townsfolk must discover the secrets and purpose of the “dome” and its origins, while coming to learn more than they ever knew about each other. – IMDB.com

I was highly skeptical of this show when I saw the first commercial toward the end of this last winter. I don’t read Stephen King novels (and basically have no interest in ever reading any) so I didn’t want to support any project from The King of Horror. Boy was I surprised. This is actually a good show, with a decent plot, and characters that don’t annoy me too much. Undoubtedly, the shining star of the series is ‘Breaking Bad’ alum, Dean Norris, who plays the loathsome James ‘Big Jim’ Rennie, a town councilman. Big Jim has killed people, framed people, and covered up his son’s kidnapping: “Father of the Year” material for sure. Anyway, if you get stuck next summer without anything to watch, this is a good show to get involved in (after you use Netflix to view season 1 first, of course).

Wilfred – FX

The story of a manic depressive man who inexplicably is the only one who can see his neighbor’s dog as a full grown man in a dog suit. – IMDB.com

[adinserter block=”2″]This show is very funny but it can drive me crazy sometimes. I want them to focus on why this grown man is talking to this dog, and explain to me whether this is somehow real (through unrealistic magic), or just a figment of Ryan’s (Elijah Wood) imagination. The season finale was just confusing. What was that mess with Ryan’s father. He has cameras installed in Ryan’s house so he is the only one in the world who knows that Ryan talks to Wilfred, the next door neighbor’s dog… Then in an accident involving Wilfred, he falls down the steps and dies… huh? That’s the type of television plot points that usually makes me roll my eyes and turn the channel. Plus, the kiss between Ryan and Jenna (Fiona Gubelmann) is what should have been the season ending cliffhanger, instead of the stupid “symbol” crap that Ryan found on an envelope in his dad’s office. I don’t even know what that’s about or where they are headed with that storyline. I’m still looking forward to being entertained by this show next summer though. Wilfred is hilarious.

Jack Gotta
Follow Jack on Twitter @JackGotta


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