Read Before Watching: February 8th

First, let me apologize for the delay in this edition of my fledgling column. I’m still tweaking the format of it. I had thought to have it be every Wednesday to have something new for you in the middle of the week. However, in rethinking things, maybe having this be at the beginning of the week and looking ahead to what’s coming on will be a little better. I’m still uncertain. Read Before Watching gets a good amount of traffic, so I know you’re reading it. Please leave me some feedback with what you’d like to see as far as format and coverage. Now, then, let’s take a look at what I’m looking forward to this week on the small screen. Note, you will need a DVR this week in order to play along at home.

Chuck (8:00PM, NBC)
Is it just me or is the shine beginning to wear off of Chuck? It could just be me, but I’m just not as excited as I used to be about this show. It’s still funny, it still delivers, but I don’t think about this show until it’s time to watch it. It still beats, say, Survivor or doing laundry and I’m not dropping it by any means. I just hope they do something new sometime soon.

Heroes (9:00PM, NBC)
Heroes got a lot of flack for a convoluted Volume Three, but not from me. I’m not saying it was perfect, but it sure tried. I’m still digging this show quite a bit. I do think there are some things here and there that could be changed and, admittedly, it may be time for some characters to go, but this new storyline has me intrigued enough to give the show as a whole a spot on my must-see list. This week I think we finally get to meet the man who fathered Sylar.

The Mentalist (9:00PM, CBS)
This is probably my second favorite show right now. Everything is perfect, from the scripts to the characters to the acting. The chemistry between the main characters is just spectacular and the twists and turns each week never get old and always surprised. I can see Patrick Jane becoming one of my all-time favorite TV characters. The Mentalist has been on break for a couple of weeks, but it’s seemed too long and I will be happily tuning in on Monday.

Fringe (9:00PM, Fox)
Told you that a DVR would be required! Fringe had me at “created by J. J. Abrams,” but I’m no longer sure that will be enough to keep me watching through the rest of the season. As a whole, the episodes so far have been uneven in quality. Walter remembering an experiment he once did being similar to each week’s gory death and the sometimes half-baked resolutions are beginning to verge into annoying territory. The next two or three episodes will bring me down off the fence. I really do hope it’s on the side of “keep watching.”

Leverage (10:00PM, TNT)
Leverage is just a consistently fun show to watch. Without a doubt, you will be entertained and feel the hour go by all too quickly. After this week, we get the two-part season finale and then a long wait until season two. This is a great show and you should be watching it.

Lost (9:00PM, ABC)
Now in it’s fifth season, Lost has gone from one of the most frustratingly fun shows to the pinnacle of greatness. This, my friends, is what TV was invented for. This is the show that keeps me awake not just contemplating it’s mysteries, but the implications of the answers it gives to those mysteries. Drama, humor, great acting and time travel done right.

Lie To Me (9:00PM, Fox)
Another one to DVR. Three episodes in and I’m still on the fence about this one too. The things that could be annoying about this show, as I outlined in my review of the first episode, are still there. The twists of each week’s investigations are already deducible prior to the reveal as well. Still watching for now, we’ll see how I feel about this one next week.

Wow, there isn’t a single thing on Thursdays I’m interested in watching. That’s very odd as Thursday nights use to be the night for viewing. If anyone has a favorite that airs Thursdays, please leave a comment or email me to enlighten me.

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (8:00PM, Fox)
I think I might be done with this one. It’s been on a long break, so I’ll watch this week, but unless there has been some huge, fundamental shift, I’m done. The main characters continue to make slasher-film-esque poor decisions and only seem to survive them through a badly written final act. Wile E. Coyote seems a more adept choice at saving the world on a weekly basis at this point.

Dollhouse (9:00PM, Fox)
Joss is boss, so, yeah, this one’s a no-brainer. I’m in for however many episodes it takes for Fox to cancel this one. Yes, I’m still bitter about Firefly. But, hey, there’s supposedly a new regime at Fox that appreciates that some shows take time to build an audience. I hope they mean longer than episode three. Anyway, this one debuts Friday, so please watch it live to show the network the audience is already there.

Honorable Mention: I feel compelled to mention Battlestar Galactica again as, after this week, there are only five episodes left. However, to follow up my last view of it, I officially don’t like any of the characters, except for the two that spent last week bleeding from the head. I am ready for the end.

That’s it for this week. If someone can recommend some shows I should be watching on Thursdays, Saturday and Sunday I will check them out. And Desperate Housewives should be excluded as I gave up on that one a while back.