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This week, the AA women find out what they will do when they can't turn to Marjorie for help.


S4E20 "A Cricket and a Hedge Made of Gold"

At a meeting, Marjorie shares that her sponsor relapsed after fifty-two years. This moment gave me goosebumps. It was a great decision for the show to give Marjorie this issue, to show the person who was always the one giving advice to be so unsure. This also leaves the other women unsure of who to turn to, when Marjorie decides she needs to take a break.

Bonnie ends up solving the other women's problems, which is very entertaining. I love the phone calls she has with Jill and Wendy. Marjorie isn't the only one who runs into major problems with week, when at a meeting Christy sees a guy who raped her. Anna Faris is wonderful when she explains this to Jill and Wendy.

Christy ends up tearing the apartment apart looking for the cricket in it, which is a great touch. Bonnie goes to Marjorie's window to get her, which creates for a hilarious scene. It's also great when Bonnie doesn't give Marjorie and Christy space. Marjorie returns to a meeting, and it is very funny when Marjorie tells Bonnie that after two phone calls from a person a day, she tells them to deal with it and hangs up. Christy shares about when she was raped, which is a powerful moment.


Allison Janney has been the one here getting the, much-deserved, awards. But this week, it was Anna Faris that gave an award-worthy performance. There was also many funny moments, and Marjorie's part of the story was great.

Score: 10/10

What did you think of "A Cricket and a Hedge Made of Gold"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
In the penultimate episode of Superstore's second season, we get a moment that has been coming since the pilot, Cheyenne and Bo's wedding.


S2E20 "Cheyenne's Wedding"

The employees attend Cheyenne's wedding, and Dina has pressured Cheyenne into making her a bridesmaid, which is very funny. However, Dina gets annoying when she is casting a shadow on Cheyenne during pictures. During the pictures, Amy has a hilarious line where she tries to encourage Cheyenne to run off and go to college. Also, Jonah is very awkward around Amy, which gets annoying.

Glenn, nervous about the fact that he has to fire six people, so he brings Jeff to the wedding to show him how important some people's jobs are to them. Dina demands that Cheyenne takes a bathroom break at a specific time, continuing to make her be annoying this week.

Dina tries telling some jokes, which of course goes very poorly. Her attempts are both funny and annoying. Amy takes the microphone, but the way she talks about her own marriage doesn't sound very good, and it's funny when Dina can actually make people laugh when she starts talking about this.

Amy admits to Jonah that her marriage is over, and this leads to a good conversation between them. Sandra spends time with the guy she likes, from the ladies' lunch episode, which is very entertaining. I loved the ending with this. At the very end of the episode, Glenn ends up begging, in front of everyone, that Jeff doesn't make him fire members of his Cloud 9 family.


Dina was annoying this week, as she was just too much, and Jonah and Amy weren't the best. The other characters and the things that they had going on were better though, especially Sandra.

Score: 7/10

What did you think of "Cheyenne's Wedding"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
They don't want to be another Ferguson, but this week it's looking like that may happen.


S1E6 "Hour 6: The Fire This Time"

Preston and Ashe want to investigate the connection between Jesse and Joey, but the police department shows them that the connection they found, the strain of weed, is just because of who sold it to them. Due to the riots, Preston and Ashe are given one more week to work on the case, when a new team will replace them. I like this time crunch being put on them, because the series has lacked in urgency so far. Also, Preston has an interesting conversation about Abraham Lincoln, giving us another perspective. I like that the show does that.

Ashe heads home to see her daughter, but she gets mad when she discovers that this is a supervised visit. She goes to court, where she argues that she can balance her work and being a mother. She gives an emotional argument as to why her daughter needs her, which is a compelling moment. This doesn't seem to help her case, much so she resorts to getting her ex to have sex with her, and then blackmails him. This was a good story, though it felt so disconnected from the main story of the series.

As the protesting increases, the governor is conflicted about what to do. The protesting turns to rioting, and the police try to contain it. The show does a great job of showing the intensity of these riots, and it gives us a really emotional moment when Joey's brother damages a police car, and then is taken by the police, as his mother cries out "no!" She ends up blaming Preston for this, because he gave them the delusion that they could get justice. That is an interesting perspective, and I'm glad the show gave us that.


This week's episode was stronger than the last few weeks. A lot more happened, especially as the episode went on, and Ashe's personal story wasn't just a repeat of what we already know, though it did feel disconnected from the rest.

Score: 7/10

What did you think of "Hour 6: The Fire This Time"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
Wednesday was a pretty rough night for most networks, with a lot of shows continuing to hit or tie lows. The CW had a decent night, though the shows were still at their low points. ABC's sitcoms all returned at season lows, though Designated Survivor grew a tenth. NBC also returned from hiatus, and SVU and PD were down a tenth each. Criminal Minds was also back, and it too was down a tenth. Its surrounding programs were both even. Empire on Fox returned after a week off and was down two tenths.

Finals Update: Survivor (+0.1), Criminal Minds (+0.1), and Blackish (+0.1) adjusted up.
Time
Show
18-49 Rating
Channel

8 PMSurvivor1.8/6CBS

The Goldbergs1.4/6ABC

Blindspot0.9/4NBC

Shots Fired0.8/4Fox

Arrow0.5/3The CW
8:30 PMSpeechless1.2/5ABC
9 PMEmpire2.1/8Fox

Blackish1.2/5ABC

Criminal Minds1.3/5CBS

Law & Order: SVU1.1/4NBC

The 1000.3/2The CW
9:30 PMBlackish1.2/5ABC
10 PMChicago PD1.2/5NBC

Designated Survivor1.1/5ABC

Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders0.8/3CBS
The team are called to investigate after a homeless man, later revealed as Retired Navy Captain Charles Langston kidnaps a corrupt VA administrator.  When Hetty contacts her former colleagues Retired Admiral AJ Chegwidden and Admiral Sterling Bridges to request their assistance, it gradually becomes clear to the team that there is more to this case than meets the eye.
Battle Scars is very much the subject of this episode, jointly written by Jordana Lewis Jaffa and Andrew Bartels.  The scars are results of various characters experiences and adventures in the field, extremely very recent and others dating back decades.  The damage is psychological and physical and varies from character to character.  The after effects of the team’s operations have been explored throughout season 8, starting of course with Kensi.  She has struggled with her temporary paralysis and whether she would ever be able to return to the field.  Even when she did visit the mission before being cleared to return, her paranoia and internal fears were realised in her daydream sequence fight with Anna Kolchek.
On the flip side, Deeks struggled with his emotions as he witnessed Kensi in her coma and then offered his unerring support as she fought to return to fitness and was subject to bouts of self doubt and depression.  When you are the person experiencing the trauma and trying to recover, it is easy to forget that your support network and loved ones are also going through a tremendously difficult time.  Kensi broaches this subject with Deeks and unfortunately before this can be explored, they hear and then rescue Bryant.  Deeks’ temperament is very subdued during this episode, which seems to commence when he and Kensi return to the VA hospital as part of the case.  IMG_3793He continues to feel ‘off’ throughout the episode.  He is distracted but whether this is attributed to the VA hospital, uncertainly over the internal affairs confession (not mentioned in Battle Scars) or just because the actor was ill whilst filming – maybe more will be revealed in next week’s episode.  NCISLA has attempted to demonstrate the effects of PTSD in S4 finale and early S5, after Deeks and Sam were tortured by Sidorov , but the consistent references during this season show the longer term effects, which is clearly much more realistic.
Shorter term effects have been shown with the return of Nate and his off screen sessions with Nell and Eric; both have struggled after killing for the first time.  Eric in particular, and he confides in Sam in the opening scenes at the shooting range.  Even Callen has suffered through his betrayal by Joelle.  Instead of zipping up his emotions as usual, he has chain-sawed and thrown out what little furniture he has, and blown hot and cold in his relationship with Anna.  A case of regressing with his trust issues!
The team may be dealing with psychological issues, but it is the older generation who are suffering the physical effects of their past missions.  Granger’s time in Vietnam and exposure to Agent Orange is again referenced in respect of Hetty’s former colleagues, all of whom expect to succumb in the same way.  Langston has already been diagnosed and Chegwidden realistically tells the team that Granger may well be dead now because of it.  As well as being realistic, it also provides a legitimate way to write Hetty out at a (much) later date, should the need arise.
Granger is respectfully mentioned several times outside of Hetty’s pessimistic outlook.  He was the only senior man in Kensi’s life, and the connection to her late father had made her want to ask him to give her away at her wedding.  Sam and Callen reminisce about IMG_3794their first encounter with Granger and how Callen put him down and pulled a gun on him. Cunning, sly, dry sense of humour; the tributes to Granger lead to comparisons with Chegwidden and Bridges, who show they have just as much guile, spotting Sam’s Challenger when the younger pair are waiting to see where they lead the agents.  (And the Challenger is an easy car to spot…Bridges does say that he has eyes, when Sam questions how they were made.)
There are throw away (political) statements about the treatment of the homeless as  an invisible population; no one can provide an accurate description of Langston, who posed as a homeless Vet to kidnap VA bureaucrat Bryant.  Bryant himself is the epitome of this.  He thought homeless people made up their signings reading ‘homeless vet’, ‘single mum’ and ‘incurable blood disease’.  He has complete disdain for not only the homeless but also the vets requiring medical attention, as he is skimming money meant for their treatment.  There are long queues at the VA centre and disgruntled patients are unable to obtain medical appointments for months, despite their needs and having served their country.  This aspect is not really mentioned again.  The narrative progresses with more focus on Langston himself and the hidden antics of Hetty and her former cohorts.
The older generation of Chegwidden, Bridges and Langston are well created and the former in particular have great chemistry and patter.  It was fascinating to see them take on Sam and Callen, referring to them as Hetty’s ‘lap dogs’, in response to Sam calling them ‘Abbott and Costello.’  Each pair took turns at one upping the other and it made a change to see the agents at the mercy of others, including the incredibly annoying FBI Agent Morris.  IMG_3792In fact Chegwidden and Bridges provide a glimpse as to how Sam and Callen may well be in another fifteen to twenty years, still running around causing mayhem and chaos. Unfortunately there was some clumsy storytelling; Kensi and Deeks drove past where they found VA administrator Bryant hanging but failed to spot him from the road.  Several times various characters repeated that Bryant was a corrupt official, just in case it wasn’t understood the first time.  And if Hetty and co had to find all the money for equipment, fuel, bribes – then where did they find $1 million worth of gold bars (now worth $40 million)?  And Sam and Callen blame the FBI collectively, for shooting Undersecretary of Defence, Duggan, yet during the mole trilogy, the blame was firmly placed on the CIA.
Battle Scars is the first of a two-parter and as a result, the narrative does not race along at one hundred miles an hour.  The plot and characters can be explored in more depth, allowing for development of Hetty’s former colleagues and the slow unravelling of their real story.  The exchanges between Chegwidden and Bridges with Sam and Callen provided a light hearted tone to the episode which overall had a slightly sombre feel, particularly with Deeks not dishing out the usual wise cracks, the joke about Kensi finding ‘fresh prints’, and Deeks immediately asking ‘Bel Air’, excepted.  Callen is reminded of Joelle’s lame attempt on Hetty’s life and has clearly been talked about behind his back.  vlcsnap-2017-04-26-21h37m11s568Sam and Bridges are constantly sniping and part two will hopefully continue the gentle antagonism between them.  There was a risk that an episode focusing on characters from Hetty and Granger’s past would detract from the screen time of the main agents however the risk was unfounded.  This was a team episode, the team has temporarily become a little bigger and even with a slightly subdued Deeks, it was again reassuring to see Sam and Callen on form as partners, and Kensi and Deeks sharing some emotional moments.
Scandal may be the title of a different ABC political drama, but a scandal is the topic of this week's episode of Designated Survivor.


S1E18 "Lazarus"

This week in the political story, Kirkman wants to make Hookstraten vice president, but a wrench is put in that plan when a news article implies that she was involved with Turkey. She has to face a hearing due to this. In one scene, Hookstraten essentially blackmails the person who gave the press the story, which seems to me like the show hasn't settled on its message. We love Kirkman because he is not a politician, he doesn't play their games. But Hookstaten is demonstrating the opposite of this, and in this half of the season is being portrayed as one of the good guys. Is the show unsure of what it wants to communicate? Is it trying to remind us that Hookstraten isn't all that good? If it's the latter, surely they could find a better way to communicate that, right?

Meanwhile dealing with the conspiracy, Hannah and Jason come back from North Dakota. Hannah looks into a lead, and that's pretty much all that happens. It feels like episodes we have seen before. Until the end! Hannah ends up getting drugged. Finally, something truly interesting to come out of the conspiracy story recently, though it does feel a bit like the car crash near the end of season 1A. Also, there is probably the most obvious instance of product placement I have ever seen. Look at what Hannah can do with her Ford Fusion!


The political story seemed like it could be interesting at first, but it did not deliver on that potential. The conspiracy went as usual until the ending, so while this week's episode didn't impress me at all, I am excited for next week.

Score: 4.5/10

What did you think of "Lazarus"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
The 100's fourth season is in the process of winding down, with a solution to survive. But there will still be major challenges, of course, in these last five episodes of the season.


S4E9 "DNR"

Everyone is heading to the bunker in order to survive. Raven, Murphy, and Emori have yet to head out, and an urgent problem arises when Raven gets into the rocket due to hallucinations, and then has a seizure. It turns out that the seizure was just meant to be shocking, as the next time we see Raven she is fine, except for the fact that she is still having hallucinations. The scene where Raven tells Murphy she doesn't plan on going with them ends up being a strong one, as Raven explains that she can deal with losing her life, but not with losing her mind. It really feels like Raven's end is coming, which I will be very sad about, but I will understand, as The 100 can't possible go into season five with so many main cast members, can they?

Clarke, Abby, and Roan are on their way to the bunker, when Abby reveals to Clarke that a deal was made with Trikru, which involves betraying Roan. However, this deal ends up harming them, as Roan takes control. Clarke tries to get Roan and Indra to agree to share the bunker, but Indra is stubborn. Clarke reveals to Indra's daughter her nightblood, so Clarke can be made commander. I am not a big fan of this solution, because Clarke is special enough already. However, this plan is luckily foiled when it is revealed that she was made a nightblood through science. Roan proposes a way to decide who gets the bunker, a fight with one representative from each clan.

Jaha, Bellamy, and Monty try to get Jasper and the people he has persuaded to party to go with them, but they refuse. This situation doesn't feel very urgent. Eventually, Jasper and Harper stay behind, and they say goodbye to Bellamy, specifically telling him to take care of Monty. However, Harper discovers Monty at the party, who is staying behind in case Jasper and Harper change their mind. I feel like the execution of this story was all wrong, it felt all over the place and often random.


This episode had plenty of weak spots, such as most of the moments involving Jaha, Bellamy, Monty, Jasper, and Harper, along with the weird little Octavia story. Clarke's story and Raven's story each had their strengths and their weaknesses, keeping this from being a bad episode, but not doing enough to really elevate it to being a good one.

Score: 6/10

What did you think of "DNR"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
After J.J. heard a serious conversation about his future that he wasn't part of, this week's episode focuses on his attempt to run away--with the help of Maya.


S1E20 "R-U-N-RUNAWAY"

This week's episode begins where the last one left off, with J.J. showing up and Kenneth's. It's pretty funny as Kenneth takes him up the stairs to his apartment. Kenneth takes J.J. back to the DiMeos', and they want to prove how sorry they are, which is pretty funny. It gets funnier when people trade off reading J.J's board depending on who he is yelling at, and it's funniest when Maya gets mad at Kenneth for bringing J.J. back, and decides to help him run away.

Maya and J.J.'s running away adventure is funny at every chance it gets, especially Maya's line about why they are pretending to be married, "because we love each other". Maya finds an adult with a good life who has cerebral palsy to show J.J. that he can do a lot of things, and it's entertaining as she chases him down. J.J. talking to this person is a sweet ending, and I really liked J.J. having that.

Dylan and Ray discover that Jimmy will give them whatever they want to avoid an emotional conversation, which of course they use for their advantage. It is very funny when one of Ray's requests ends up being a robe. Ray and Jimmy end up having a nice moment together in robes, and there is a funny moment when Jimmy asks if Ray is wearing anything underneath the robe.

Also, Dylan finds out that Kenneth used to be great at basketball, and tries to get that side of him out. There are a couple of entertaining moments here, but it isn't especially funny, and the story doesn't have much of an arc. I do appreciate the show doing this different pairing though.


With many funny moments, along with a small dose of seriousness, the main story and the one with Ray and Jimmy worked well. Dylan and Kenneth's portion of the story was significantly weaker than the rest, but I appreciate the effort there.

Score: 8/10

What did you think of "R-U-N-RUNAWAY"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

Top Ten - The Best Episodes: Friends


Welcome to the fourth Best Episodes post. This week, I'm doing a really popular, iconic, and great show, Friends. There are so many great episodes, especially in such a big show, it was hard to narrow it down to ten.


*Spoilers Ahead*


10. The One With The Proposal (Season 6, Episode 23 and 24)


Plot: Chandler was trying to propose to Monica, when Richard shows up, and ruins the moment. To throw off a suspicious Monica, Chandler tries to act like he never wants to get married, upsetting Monica. Ross rethinks his relationship with a college student. Joey accidentally buys a boat at an auction, and falls in love with the idea of being a sailor, so he decides to keep it. Finally, after a long episode of twists and turns, Monica and Chandler get engaged in one of the show's most serious-romantic moments.

Why to Watch: One of TV's most sweetest moments ended the episode, which was in an episode filled with really sweet moments, especially Chandler's talk with Richard. Joey's plot was also really funny, as it showed his simpleness, which is always entertaining. This was one of the cases, where the jokes didn't carry the episode, but the serious moments did.

9. The One Where They're Up All Night (Season 7, Episode 12)


Plot: The whole gang is up the entire night after they try to see a comet on the roof. Monica and Chandler can't get to sleep, Rachel and Tag play a game of tag (pun intended ??) searching for a business file, Joey and Ross try to get off the roof after getting locked out, and Phoebe's smoke detector won't stop beeping.

Why to Watch: Phoebe stole the show in this episode, all of her scenes with her craziness were so funny. With one of the show's most unique in plot episodes, the plot really made the episode. It was so entertaining to watch, and filled with so many funny jokes.

8. The One At The Beach (Season 3, Episode 25)



Plot: The gang goes to the beach (shocker!). Phoebe goes in search of a woman who was friends with her mom, who is revealed to be her own mother. Ross discovers that Rachel still loves him, and he must then chose between bald Bonnie, and Rachel.

Why to Watch: The antics in this episode were great. Another episode that didn't have an overachieving plot, but was still fantastic. Phoebe's plot was had some serious moments, which was great (as well as funny) to see, and this episode was one of the few in which the 'will they? or won't they?' of Ross and Rachel was well done, funny, and entertaining.

7. The One In Vegas (Season 6, Episode 23 and 24)


Plot: Monica and Chandler go to Vegas for their anniversary, but Phoebe tags along to make up for missing the London trip. While there, they find out Joey is working as a gladiator in a casino since recording of his movie has been postpones. Rachel and Ross eventually make their way there, but they take turns embarrassing each other the entire flight, and when they get to Vegas, they get drunk. All ending with Ross and Rachel shocking Monica and Chandler (who were questioning marriage), as they run out of the chapel, newlywed.

Why to Watch: The setting of this episode was just so much fun. It was amazing getting to see this group of people take on Vegas. The plots were so funny, from Joey's hand twin to Phoebe getting kicked out of the casino, Regina Phalange appearing, and drunk Rosschel, everyone's plots were just so entertaining.

6. The One Where No One's Ready (Season 3, Episode 2)


Plot: Another simple plot episode, that was nonetheless, hilarious. Ross has an important event to go too, and he's bringing the gang... if they can get ready in time.

Why to Watch: The antics of the group in this episode were so funny. Phoebe stained her dress with hummus, Rachel couldn't decide what to wear (and had a breakdown), Joey and Chandler battled over a chair, so Joey put on everything Chandler owned, it was such a great episode. The episode was so funny, and really hit a high point when Monica starting obsessing over Richard's voicemail.

5. The One With All the Thanksgivings (Season 5, Episode 8)


Plot: Late in the day on Thanksgiving, the gang sat around discussing their worst Thanksgivings, which of course, led to hilarious plots.

Why to Watch: More flashbacks! Fat Monica. Chandler's old hair. Phoebe's hilariously made-up past life as a French battlefield nurse, Chandler tells Monica he loves her, turkeys on heads, Joey freaking out about seeing a turkey on a head, it was all so funny. Definitely a very memorable episode of such a great show.

4. The One With the Prom Video (Season 2, Episode 14)


Plot: Joey gets chandler a hideous friendship bracelet, Monica tries to get a new job, and Rachel "draws a line in the sand when it comes to dating Ross." While this episode didn't have a big, overachieving plot, it overflew with hilarious scenes, and a really sweet ending.

Why to Watch: The titular Prom Video. Monica and Rachel's '80s prom night. Big noses. Big hair. Fat Monica. Hilarious one-liners throughout the entire video (and episode), and the Rosschel ending. Oh, and everyone's favorite hippie's hilarious line, "See! He's her lobster."

3. The One With Rachel's Going Away Party (Season 10, Episode 16)


Plot: The gang holds Rachel's going away party, during which she gives each of her friends a moving and hilarious goodbye, except Ross. This led to a really sweet moment between the two. Also, Monica and Chandler start packing up their apartment and Chandler finds a pair of handcuffs and tries to find out who they belong to.

Why to Watch: Rachel and Monica's unintelligible-tearful goodbye is enough. It was just so hilarious. Also, there were a ton of small jokes, and one-liners regarding Rachel's goodbye that were so funny. I also really loved the plot of the handcuffs, as that was really entertaining.

2. The One Where Everybody Finds Out (Season 5, Episode 14)


Plot: After Phoebe discovers what Rachel and Joey have known for weeks, that  Monica and Chandler are dating, the girls start messing with the future Bings, which clues in the happy couple, so they retaliate. This leads to a hilarious date (and one very awkward kiss) with Phoebe and Chandler.

Why to Watch: From Joey's bedtime penguin pal, to Phoebe's hilarious scene finding out about Monica and Chandler, there are just so many funny things in this episode. But, the absolute best part of the episode, and maybe one of the best scenes of the entire show, is the hilarious "romantic" showdown between Phoebe and Chandler, which started with bicep squeezing, and ended with a very sweet moment of Chandler declaring he loves Monica.

1. The One That Could Have Been (Season 6, Episode 15 and 16)


Plot: The gang ponders what might have happened if Ross and Carol stayed married, Monica had still been fat, Chandler had become a struggling writer, Joey had still worked on Days, Rachel had married Barry, and Phoebe became a stockbroker.

Why to Watch: This episode was amazing. I loved seeing who different the group  would have been, and their new personalities, each was so funny and entertaining, almost as great as their real personalities and lives. Fat Monica was great as always. This episode was filled with hilarious jokes, and some of the most entertaining plots of the show. I think what made this episode was the different looks of the gang, and how different their lives would be, along with how much everything would be changed. It was a fresh, and great take on the friends. I also loved the theme song for the episode.



What were your favorite episodes of Friends? Let me know in the comments below!

Tuesday night saw a few new premieres, while some shows took the night off ahead of May Sweeps. NBC had the biggest and most notable premiere, with comedy Great News starting slightly lower than Trial & Error. Both series ended up with a 1.0 in their second episode on premiere night, though considering T&E's much larger lead-in, the 1.2 for Great News looks a bit better. Chicago Fire returned after some time off, and it was steady. Also steady was the Voice, which was even with last Tuesday, but down a tenth from Monday. ABC was in repeats for a bit, but Imaginary Mary aired a new episode, and it was down a tenth. Lead-out SHIELD fared worse, down two tenths to match its typical winter performances. The CW brought The Flash back, and it was up a tenth and helped iZombie grow, too. Fox's programs were steady with their latest airings all night long. CBS aired repeats for the first two hours, but premiered a new series, 48 Hours:NCIS, which had an expectedly rough start.

Finals Update: The Mick (+0.1) and SHIELD (+0.1) adjusted up. iZombie (-0.1) and 48 Hours: NCIS (-0.1) adjusted down.
Time
Show
18-49 Rating/Share
Viewers (mil)
Channel
8 PMThe Voice1.8/79.42NBC

The Flash1.0/42.64The CW

The Middle (R)0.8/43.94ABC

NCIS (R)0.7/37.19CBS

Brooklyn Nine-Nine0.7/31.90Fox
8:30 PMThe Mick0.9/42.20Fox

American Housewife (R)0.8/33.09ABC
9 PMGreat News (Series Premiere)1.2/45.21NBC

Prison Break0.9/32.76Fox

Speechless (R)0.8/32.78ABC

Bull (R)0.8/36.63CBS

iZombie0.3/11.05The CW
9:30 PMGreat News1.0/44.25NBC

Imaginary Mary0.8/32.88ABC
10 PMChicago Fire1.3/56.80NBC

Marvel's Agents of SHIELD0.7/32.14CBS

48 Hours: NCIS (Series P)0.6/35.26ABC
***Spoilers Ahead***

The Last Ride

Credit: FOX


In the early days of Brooklyn Nine-Nine, the series had a more case-oriented nature. While the writers still focused on character relationships, there was still a strong emphasis on the police work. As the series has progressed, there have been a lot more episodes outside the precinct setting or ones where cases aren't fully developed. While these case-less episodes can be done well, Brooklyn is simply at its best with goofy nicknames, epic montages, and suspenseful action scenes as Jake and company hunt down the criminal of the week and solve the case. "The Last Ride" is a return to this familiar format after a season without many case-heavy episodes and it definitely pays off. 

There's a lot of fun to be had in the A-plot as Jake and Charles hunt down a child's missing bike that ends up leading to a much bigger drug case. There's a different tone in this story as the looming threat of a precinct shutdown puts their relationship in jeopardy. This works to the series's advantage since Brooklyn knows how to execute emotional moments without making things cheesy or sappy and this stays true in "The Last Ride" where one can't help but feel sad that Taylor Omaha and Chip Rockets may never work on a case again. Of course, things end up working out in the end, but the moment in the car with Peralta & Boyle describing the new partners they'll soon have is just as touching even with the happy ending. Moreover, the fact that the episode gave the case some depth is a nice change of pace from recent episodes like "The Audit" in which the case isn't even given a mention and is just used as an excuse to get the characters away from the precinct. I really enjoyed seeing Jake race Bodhi the BMX rider and I enjoyed seeing Jake & Boyle gear up with all the weapons they can (or can't) hold. Scenes like these are what Nine-Nine is known for and I'm glad that the writers returned to their roots for this installment, seems fitting for an episode titled "The Last Ride". 

For once, I enjoyed the B and C-plots on the same level as the A-plot. Both were a return to what the show has done well in the past. First off, there's the Holt & Amy plot. Season 1 and 2 of Brooklyn Nine-Nine had a strong emphasis on Santiago's need to impress Holt and it definitely led to some of the show's best moments. But, this episode's plot finally features Holt on the same level as Amy as he reveals his secret binder detailing a mentorship plan. It's great that Amy gets some closure by finding out that Holt was her mentor all along. It's the type of plot that would feel right at home in a season 1 episode, which is always a good thing in my book (or binder). 

The C-plot also features something I've enjoyed in the past, Hitchcock & Scully actually doing their jobs. Season 2's "Sabotage" showed that the duo are indeed competent detectives, but simply lack the willpower. For that reason, it doesn't come off as much of a shock that Hitchcock has solved the most cases and holds the title of Mr. Nine-Nine with Terry in a close second. It was great seeing Terry interact with an overly confident Hitchcock, but even though Terry is obviously the more competent detective, as Rosa shows, I still like to think that Hitchcock is the real Mr. Nine-Nine. 

Meanwhile, Gina makes everyone drink cement. This running gag starts out pretty strong but gets a bit tedious as it goes on. At least Gina gets to play a more crucial role in this episode as opposed to the previous one. 


"The Last Ride" is an episode that fires off non-stop comedy and takes Brooklyn Nine-Nine back to its roots. Everything just manages to click in this episode and the results were phenomenal. 


Stray Thoughts
  • At the end of the episode, I thought Amy was going outside to smoke a cigarette. I wonder if she ever broke that habit?
  • Hitchcock proudly showcasing his tattoo to Terry got the biggest laugh out of me. 
  • Anyone remember the name of the bartender?
  • It didn't take long for Gina to recover after being hit by a bus.
  • Wish we could have seen more of the drug bust with Jake and Charles
  • Drug dealers are so mean.

Grade: A+



Thanks for reading my review of Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Leave your thoughts in the comments below. Catch an all new episode next Tuesday, 8/7c, on FOX. 



The final new show of the regular season is Great News, coming from people who have spent some time at NBC: creator Tracey Wigfield served as a writer and producer on 30 Rock, Tina Fey, star and creator of 30 Rock, is an executive producer, along with Robert Carlock and David Miner, who also executive produced 30 Rock, and Miner also executive produced Parks and Recreation and The Good Place.


S1E1 "Pilot"

The episode begins with news producer Katie talking on the phone to her mother Carol. This quickly introduces us to the characters, their relationship, and what Katie wants: to stop producing fluff pieces, and produce real news. At a funeral, Katie and Carol hear about how the person who died had dreams, and this leads to both of them wanting to pursue their dreams. Katie pushes to produce a lead story, and she gets the chance. Carol decides to go back to school, which involves an internship at Katie's news program. We have our premise all set up, end of act one. The show is efficient story-wise thus far. Also, the jokes about Carol's treatment of her husband are very funny.

The executive producer gives Carol the job so he won't be accused of ageism, and it's funny when he refers to Carol as "an old". Katie doesn't like Carol working with her, and ends up lying to her to get her fired. That's farther than I would expect her to go. Meanwhile, Katie also deals with the fact that the hurricane she was covering got downgraded, and won't be the lead story. Carol stands up to Chuck, the anchor, and gets him to do what she wants him to, so instead of getting fired, the executive producer loves her. However, Carol quits.

Katie goes to get Carol back, and when she does she remembers what she was told, that a good producer knows when to ditch a lead story. Katie switches from the hurricane story to one about baby boomers re-entering the workforce. It ends up being successful, of course, and at the end Katie tells Carol that she wants her there. The steps to each of these resolutions are fairly unclear, but that is likely because it has to set things up. The final joke of the episode is very funny, about how Carol can't come into work the next day because two gays on her soap are getting married.


S1E2 "Bear Attack"

On a slow news day, Katie gets a story about a bear at Central Park. However, Carol becomes worried that this could be dangerous. It is hilarious when she searches online for an answer to her question. Carol takes steps to keep Katie from going to report on the bear, while not telling Katie that she doesn't want her to go. There are some amusing moments here. Meanwhile, executive producer Greg try to get the anchors Chuck and Portia to add some banter in add the end of the show. Carol and Katie actually get pretty funny when Katie realizes that Carol is keeping her from reporting on the story.

Chuck attempts at banter, but it's funny when he is bad at it. Greg works with them on this, and it's hilarious when they banter about the show they are competing against, as it is the one thing they have in common. Carol helps Katie ride a bike, and I love when Carol tells the cameraman to film this. Greg gets the banter he wants, though they are actually talking about different things, which I found very funny. The episode, like the first one, ended with a great joke, as Carol sits down to tell Chuck what she learned today, and he tells her they aren't that close.


In the first episode, most of the jokes rely on people going farther than you would expect them to, and sadly they weren't that strong. There were a couple of good jokes in the episode, but that can't make up for its flaws, such as how the stories weren't very fleshed out. The stories were a bit better in the second episode, though the main story was a bit typical. The last few minutes of that episode were easily the funniest part of the entire hour, as this is when the jokes really hit. Great News isn't off to a great start, but it's off to a good enough one with these first two episodes.

Score: 6/10 (episode 1)

Score: 7.5/10 (episode 2)

What did you think of "Pilot" and "Bear Attack"? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
Monday night saw a few returns of some old faces and (what is likely to be) a series finale). Fox had Gotham's return, and it was not a triumphant one. The series returned to a new series low after about three months off, though it was still an improvement over what 24: Legacy had been doing in its last few weeks. APB limped across the finish line, though it was up a tenth with the improved lead-in. It is likely that there will be a time-slot improvement when the already-renewed Lucifer returns next week. The CW was in repeats for quite a bit, and last night was the return of Supergirl and Jane the Virgin. That worked about as well for them as it did for Gotham. Both returned with series lows, with Jane posting a terrible 0.2 and Supergirl hitting a 0.5. NBC's The Voice and Taken both ticked down another tenth each. On ABC, Dancing With the Stars was down after the boost from Disney week, though Quantico was up a tenth. CBS was in repeats all night.

Finals Update: Gotham (+0.1) adjusted up to avoid a new series low. Quantico (-0.1) and a Scorpion repeat (-0.1) adjusted down.
Time
Show
18-49 Rating/Share
Viewers (mil)
Channel
8 PMThe Voice1.9/79.26NBC

Dancing With the Stars1.6/610.31ABC

The Big Bang Theory (R) 1.1/56.36CBS

Gotham0.9/42.91Fox

Supergirl0.5/21.80The CW
8:30 PMSuperior Donuts (R)0.9/34.83CBS
9 PMKevin Can Wait (R)0.8/34.34CBS

APB (F)0.7/32.77Fox

Jane the Virgin0.2/10.86The CW
9:30 PM2 Broke Girls (R)0.7/33.38CBS
10 PMTaken0.8/34.62NBC

Scorpion (R)0.6/34.06CBS

Quantico0.5/22.92ABC