Yet again TV on DVD is the order of the day, this time bordering on overload. I'll keep it brief.
Robin Hood (2010): Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchett, Mark Strong
In the quintessential origin story that has become so popular of late, "Robin Hood" tells the tale of how the title character came to be the man, the myth, the legend. Fortunately for the famed Robin Hood, no one knew his background was so incredibly dull, else he may have never become the epic hero he is now. Not a bad movie by any means but certainly not up to the caliber I expected from a righteous combination of Ridley Scott, Russell Crowe, and the original superhero himself. I found this to be only okay.
Ondine (2010): Colin Farrell
A fairy tale about an Irish fisherman (Farrell) who "catches" a sort-of mermaid that brings some interesting adventures into his life. This got very positive reviews all around and I'm interested if it hits instant view.
How I Met Your Mother - Season 5 (2009): Neil Patrick Harris, Josh Radnor, Jason Segal
The latest version of "Friends" centers around five New Yorkers, as one (Radnor) tells the story of how he met his wife to his future kids. I've been with HIMYM since the beginning but I (along with everyone else) readily admit that Season 5 was a down year. The problem was two-fold. 1.) The question of who Ted's wife is and when she will be revealed became tiresome. Just get to it already. 2.) HIMYM has always been a show that relies on a few defining episodes to carry it through. Four or five episodes in a row will be good, not great, and then the next one will be spectacular. Season 5 really only brought one or two moments of awesome. Still a good show, but I'm hoping season 6 picks it up.
Modern Family - Season 1 (2009): Ed O'neill, Julie Bowen, et al.
An "Office" style mockumentary concerning the lives of one family consisting of a patriarch (O'neill) and his new wife, his daughter (Bowen) and her husband and kids, and his son and partner. Very few shows have grabbed my attention from episode one and brought me in for life the way "Modern Family" did. A cross between "Arrested Development" and "The Office", its like this show was custom made for me. This is one of the most brilliantly written and performed shows on TV.
30 Rock - Season 4 (2009): Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan
An outrageous behind-the-scenes look at a Saturday Night Live-like program known as "The Girlie Show." "30 Rock" is perhaps the funniest show on TV, containing the perfect blend of slap stick foolishness, perfect physical comedy, and subtle wit which make it really the only show that has come close to reaching "Arrested Development" territory. Season 4 came down a bit from Season 3 but in all honesty and I mean this, Season 3 might have been the best year EVER for ANY sitcom. So I can't really blame the show for following up an A+++ year with one that only reaches A++.
Community (2009): Joel McHale, Chevy Chase
A successful attorney, Jeff Winger (McHale) is forced to go to community college after his transcript comes into question. He soon discovers he is not too cool for school and joins a Spanish study group that serves as his surrogate family. "Community" is strongly written and quick witted. Plus, Joel McHale is stinking hilarious and I think it's important to support his blossoming career. The final four episodes or so of Season 1 were outstanding, hopefully setting the stage for an improved sophomore year.
This week also brings a host of other TV shows that I haven't seen or don't care enough about to really cover. These include:
Spartacus: Blood and Sand - Season 1 (A truly awful show.)
Desperate Housewives - Season 6 (How is this still on TV?)
The Mentalist - Seaosn 1 (CBS = I'm out)
Law and Order: SVU - Season 11 (Still pretty good)
Two and a Half Men - Season 7 (It's kind of embarrassing that this made it past it's pilot episode.)