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What Just Happened??! (2019)
Not briliant from beginning to end, but amusing and reasonably clever
The little cliffhangers of The Flare have a real-show feel to them, as if they are written by people who make such things for a living. Jon Cassar ( worked on 24, The Orville, and directed episodes of some 2000's and 1990's shows ) perhaps has a large influence on the clips.
Fred's a natural. He might be able to pull off a real show if given the chance. A real-real show....not a real show that is fake, like this show. Even though this show exists, so it's real. But sorta not.
I can't be sure but I figure much of the dialogue in the interviews with the celebrities comes from the celebrities themselves, rather than being fully scripted by the show's writers. I'd be bummed if all of that was written for them, too.
Where things kinda go off the rails a bit is the random character who is part of the show in the first half, then suddenly pops up in the end. The timeline doesn't always fit to make this possible, so.....ehh, should we take that problem seriously?
Homeland: Big Man in Tehran (2013)
improvisation is not easy
The little bits of panic and worry by Brody are quite interesting. He decides to use truth ( something he would waver on once his life went wild ) to earn the general's trust, then picks the only object within reach that looks solid enough to hurt the general: an astray.
See how dangerous tobacco related products can be to you? Then after finishing the job with a lovely pillow he puts the ashtray back really quietly, as if the noise will be more noticeable than the moment the general fell on the floor.
Cleaning up the blood? Couldn't the general have a box of facial tissues nearby? Good thing that water was there, and that the secretary had left her desk.
As this all played out I realized it was the second big-wig that Brody has killed in his own office. He's not bad for an amateur assassin.
Talk shows hosts have their own way, and that's that
Fallon doesn't have the raw guttural humor of someone like Ferguson, nor should he expected to be. Fallon's semi-worship of guests has actually toned down a bit....it may drop as he ages, or not.....sometimes people just don't change.
He does not have writers that create some of the inspired bits of other shows....maybe it's not that easy to find people like that. This show is more like a very conventional show than something created with a niche audience. He'll find a way to survive.
As for people making political accusations here, you sound like very grumpy people who can't watch anything on TV without demanding that everything should be your way.
A product of our times
The show has traits from different factors. Our current society is basically accepting of mediocrity and a short attention span, which the show provides.
The show appears on network TV, so it attempts to a wide generic audience.
The show has a late time slot, taking advantage of looser standards, resulting in some tacky mean lowbrow unsophisticated humor.
The New York basing of the show provides an audience that is sort of loud and judgmental, quick to boo or cheer on whatever whimsy they are feeling.
The types of comedy are an amalgamation. There are sketches that are fictional forms of comedy used by other shows based on "real life". Some Late Night sketches use actors ( from local comedy troupes ) sitting in the seats posing as audience members; may of these particular sketches repeat themselves, with the exact content changing a little but not to the point of really doing anything new.
Occasionally Conan will head out into real life, taping his adventures ( sometimes along with another employee of the show ) encountering actual people; I consider these bits some of the better results of the show, since they have a lower amount of nastiness and weirdness.
Another comedy piece I go for are the Recliner Of Rage complaints by Pierre Bernard. Bernard is basically a mad with a good proper heart, with a steady real job ( he works for the show ), who has a few pet peeves. It's good that Conan isn't hard on him.
What does Conan think of the humor of the show? How much of it does he write? It's hard to say.
Conan often plays up to the camera with little antics. Occasionally he blurts out in song, adding a strange unexplainable note at the end. Other times he'll jump at the camera near the end of the monologue, with a whip of the hand over his face like he's dancing. It's basically a sign that he's settled in with being a talk show host, compared to the first two seasons ( when the show was rumored to be vulnerable to cancellation ).
Andy Rickter was the sidekick for the early seasons; he didn't do much, but that's basically a sidekick's situation.
The band is good, and likes to ham it up. They seem to have a good time in the various comedy skits that feature them.
Announcer Joel Goddard is a bit of a mystery; he has only one pre-Conan credit for any work in the television or movie industry. Where did he come from? What's his life history?
Most of his comedy bits have a lack of dignity, but I suppose it doesn't bother him because they are just jokes.
Battlestar Galactica (2004)
Not your grandfather's Oldsmobile
The show has a much different feel compared to the original version of the series; that bothers some people. All I could recommend to them is that different is not automatically bad; sometimes different is simply 'different'.
The BEST way to watch this series is to not even THINK about the original; the current series is SO different from the original that is shouldn't be viewed as a remake but instead more like a parallel universe.
When I heard of the casting for the new series I had doubts the series would fly; Edward James Olmos didn't strike me as an officer on a sci-fi series. Many of the cast members are basically unknowns. The gender change of some characters seemed like a risk more likely to fail than succeed.
After watching the miniseries and the first two seasons, these casting choices aren't a problem to me now; they turned out fine.
Some people consider the original series to be 'cheezy', but I won't do that. My best short description of it would be 'family friendly'. I won't spend lots of time bashing the series because it really doesn't deserve it.
The new series works with the basic template of the original series storyline: huge robot civilization attacks humanity, almost completely destroying it. Surviving humans head into space, fleeing the robots in a search for the mysteries 13th colony ( planet ) of civilization known as Earth.
The moods of the show have a very large contrast: the original show has hope, while the current show is depressed, desperate, with the basic organization of society being tested. The original show had lots of leather for fighter pilots and black sweaters with high collars for officers; the current show has a bit more black, with more of a daunting military feel to it. The original show gave a feel of old ancient Earth civilizations, while the current show has more debate of religion and Gods.
A few character changes exist between the shows: a few characters made appearances in the miniseries and been basically removed ( Boxey disappeared and Jolly died ); there are no cute robot dogs here; some skin color or sex changes have been performed on characters carried over; an acting President of the surviving civilian government was added; Baltar, in the original series a twisted genius who turns on humanity to help the Cylons, is now nervous genius who doesn't quite know what he wants to do, with the added problem of having visions of his evil girlfriend in his head. And of course...there are the Cylons.
The Cylons we know of old still exist, as history. The current metal Cylons are tall, semi-skeletal, and don't talk much; they are much like Jim Cameron's Terminators. There are also a few Cylons who have evolved into human-robot hybrids, some of which don't know they are hybrids; the female hybrids can have babies, creating lots of things to ponder.
The original Cylon society basically followed Baltar's commands, until they got tired of him. The current Cylon society has much debate between the hybrids, since they now have their own religion and God-worship.
Many of the crisis points of the original series are in the current series, but in different order, or with a focus on different events. Examples: in the original series Commander Adama becomes ill, then the Cylons commit an attack where a Cylon raider crashes into the ship causing a fire that threatens to destroy the ship, at the same time Adama is undergoing surgery.
In the current series a fire threatens to destroy the ship, but that's in the miniseries; later Adama becomes 'ill' ( he's a victim of a shooting ), then the Cylons crash into the ship; there is no fire, but the Cylons survive the crash and attempt to commit mayhem.
Comparing this version to the original is like comparing apples to oranges. I hope people remember that BOTH apples and oranges can be enjoyable.
The 5th Wheel (2001)
Alas, this is how much of current television is. The contestants seem to fit in a very small age range ( ignoring the existence of the millions of people outside the range ), are relatively attractive looking ( as if to say everyone else shouldn't be out in public ), and often bicker/insults the competition ( can't people get along? ). There also tend to be many shows where ALL the contestants are black, or none are, indicating some type of racial hangup with either the contestants ( all colors ) and/or the producers. Is my calendar wrong? Are we not in the 21st century?
For people new to America, I hope they don't assume all Americans are like the contestants on this show. SOME Americans are shallow, have a short attention span, and are sex-obsessed, but not all.
Blind Date (1999)
I watch too many of these dating shows; it creates images in my head that many people are going through life partly unaware of the impression they make, and are slightly clueless as to how they related to others. I need to remind myself that TV isn't true reality, since there can be much tinkering behind the scenes.
If we think of the contestants of this show being awful, what do we consider the ones on other shows ( where some feature more than two people leading to competition, extra insults/tension, bickering ).
Roger Lodge is a very good host. Many people on television ( not just dating shows ) just try too hard; they chatter a bit too much and use forced humor ( example: Jillian Barbarie of Ex-treme Dating ). Lodge tries go with the flow and does not force himself on the audience.
I have noticed contestants on dating shows who appear on more than one of them. It's a small, tiny, strange trend of current reality TV. Are these people obsessed with trying to be on these shows? Are they appearing simply because the producers of shows know each other and suggest contestants to each other? Who knows....