I dealt with a lot of my issues about the new season in my column from earlier this week, but I'll expand on a few points:
- I was all in favor of dropping the hottie roommates in favor of more time for Philip Baker Hall and Mimi Rogers and Joy Osmanski (aka Sam's assistant Darcy), but I feel like what's happened is that the scripts are structured the same as before, with the roommates' roles being reassigned at random to Hall and Rogers. While I have no problem hearing Hall deliver lines like, "I've done things you can't even draw!," it makes the show feel more sitcommy to have Russ and Meryl suddenly acting as Sam's wingmen.
- Also sitcommy: the resolution of the smashed car subplot in the second episode. Once I realized the show was going to That Place where Sam would start smashing up the car that Russ bought him, I had to mute it for about 30 seconds, just because I felt so bad about the show doing something so predictable and conventional. (If it turns out there was some kind of final twist near the end of the scene, I apologize.)
- While the show's still filthy -- witness Sam getting the Tusk of Aag stuck in a very uncomfortable place -- it feels like a dumber, lazier level of filth, as opposed to the hand job or dog proctology gags from season one that were so beautifully set up.
- Was there some kind of market research that showed that fans (all five of us) wanted more of Derek The Douche? Was he Peter Liguori's favorite character? I'm baffled by his regular prominence.
It's still an amusing show, but I liked it better last year (and even then it was a very uneven comedy). I'm of course letting myself be influenced by having seen Harrison in the pilot for "Reaper," which is awesome, but I think by the time this Burn-Off Theatre run ends (and I'll be stunned if all 10 episodes air) and "Reaper" debuts in the fall, we'll all be okay with how things went down.
What did everybody else think?