Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sitcom Roundup '09 Part II

How I Met Your Mother (CBS) ~ Who'd have guessed that every main character on How I Met Your Mother smoked?  Crazy, right?  The show took a page from Mad Men and let everyone light up this week, but I guess the censors allowed it because it proved just how bad it was for you.  Some may have not been pleased that this was a secret kept from the viewer all of this time, mostly, but the explanation offered, that Ted (narrated by Bob Saget, Full House, played by Josh Radnor) just didn't want to reveal it to his kids made perfect sense.  This episode also contained plenty of good future spoilers, a welcome convention often employed in the series, to let you know not only when each character kicked the habit for good, but also when Robin (Cobie Smulders) would begin dating her jerky co-worker.  It was a great addition to the fall finale, giving something for the viewer to look forward to.  Funniest part of the episode was Barney's (Neil Patrick Harris, Doogie Howser, M.D.) denial that he is an addict.  No one could have added as much depth and physical comic genius to the part as Harris does.

The Big Bang Theory (CBS) ~  The Good Wife let Christine Baranski take a break so she could reprise her role playing the mother of Leonard (Johnny Galecki, Roseanne) on the fall finale.  What a Christmas blessing that was!  Her chemistry with Sheldon (Jim Parsons, Judging Amy) was electric the first go round, but who would have thought that she'd connect so fully with Penny (Kaley Cuoco, 8 Simple Rules)?  Their scene getting waste in The Cheesecake Factory was hilarious!  Though Mommy Dearest may not have imagined her the ideal mate for her son, there was clearly some good vibes there.  I wonder what will happen when Leonard eventually finds out what happened between his roommate and mother?  And is anyone else disappointed that that was all that happened?  Surely there should have been more spark!  No matter, it was hilarious, just as almost every episode of this third-year show is.

The League (FX) ~ One of the funniest show of 2009, The League has taken us through a fall fantasy football season and into the payoffs with their fall finale.  The only really bad part about it was that it only lasted six episodes.  Next season will not air until next summer, and I hope that it's considerably longer.  The finale centered around who would win the trophy this year, the coveted 'Shiva', a girl the guys all drooled over in high school.  Andre (Paul Scheer) was having a bit more luck than expected, however, and it was attributed to the fact that he was dating (surprise!) the real life Shiva!  This was funny because Andre is stupid about sports, and he unseated frequent winner, Pete (Mark Duplass).  Of course, these guys play dirty, and I won't spoil what happens, as I hope more viewers catch it on the rerun, but it was hilarious!  Love live The Shiva!

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (FX) ~ This show had a Christmas special this year, but the powers that be chose not to air it on television, and instead make you purchase the DVD.  That would be fine, if they weren't charging $18.99 on Amazon for a 43 minute show, and I found only slightly cheaper in stores.  What happened to iTunes episodes for $1.99?  Anyway, instead of that incredibly overpriced ripoff, I will review the final episode that did air.  The gang finally had a ten year ban lifted on a flip cup tournament, and they were anxious to get their rivalry going again.  Of course, their old nemesis didn't even remember them, and now ran a classy joint.  Trying to first recruit and then challenge a fraternity, they continue to be disappointed.  However, in true Sunny fashion they quickly move on, not caring that they've ruined several lives in the process.  This demented version of Seinfeld, while sometimes straying a bit too gross, continue to amuse to no end, and this episode was definitely a funny one.  Not quite funny enough to ease the pain of their greed concerning the Christmas special, but pretty funny just the same.

Click here to go to Sitcom Roundup '09 Part I (ABC & NBC).

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