Tuesday, September 22, 2009

'NCIS: LA,' 'The Good Wife' & 'The Forgotten' reviews - Sepinwall on TV

In today's column, I review tonight's three new shows: "NCIS: Los Angeles," "The Good Wife" and "The Forgotten." Though I liked "The Good Wife," none of them will be going into the regular blogging rotation. Feel free to use this post to discuss the premiere episodes after they air.

24 comments:

JasonR said...

If Chris O’Donnell has a thousand faces, they all have the same expression, and it’s asking why he ordered ranch dressing instead of creamy Italian.

You made me spit coffee on my keyboard! But it was worth it.

I have never understood the appeal of Chris O'Donnell - he falls into one of my favorite acting categories (to make fun of) - uber bland actors that chicks dig (Paul Walker and Chris Klein are prominent members).

Tyroc said...

Chris Klein can play a very lovable (and funny) dumb guy.

Rent "Election."

Tracey said...

Re The Good Wife: You know, they've plugged so much of the timely angle that I thought this was actually a series about the experience of being the wife of a disgraced politician... but no, I gather from various sources that it's more a routine "woman returns to the work world years after sacrificing her career for her husband" story; the disgraced politician angle is mostly just a setup for the situation.

Yawn.

Anna said...

I have always, always, always wondered how the hell people get the wife of a disgraced politician to actually stand next to him when he announces to the world that he had an affair or had sex with a prostitute or he's gay. I MEAN, DO THEY PAY HER OR WHAT? WHY WOULD A WOMAN DO THAT? Seriously, it is one of my biggest questions in life. So I'm tempted to watch "The Good Wife" just so I can see how they handle that aspect.

Anonymous said...

Chris O'Donnell does such a bland job. Michael Shanks would have done an much better job. Tptb did a lousy job of casting.

rosengje said...

Oh, I kind of liked "The Good Wife." As you say in your column, being familiar doesn't make something bad. Plus: Josh Charles! I will continue watching for a few weeks, for he is Dan.

Curtis said...

Really enjoyed 'The Good Wife.' If they keep ongoing character development/serialized elements balanced with the procedural nature of a courtroom drama I could see myself really being into this show. Here's hoping it pulled in good numbers tonight and survives!

Matt said...

I seriously think NCIS could make a run at #1 overall for the fall part of the season this year. The constant USA reruns have exposed it to a wider demographic that rarely, if ever, watch, CBS other than Mondays, and there's ZERO competition for it in the slot, at least once DWTS shrinks to only an hour.

The only question for Good Wife getting a pickup really fast is if the NCIS audience is compatible.

Sarah said...

I wish I'd read your review before attempting "the forgotten." Slater IS quite a bit better than usual, and it's always nice to see Brian Krakow getting some work, but Iowa is less corny than this crap, and CPD's tolerance for allowing a civilian group to work their cases is just not credible.

Kensington said...

The Good Wife seems perfectly fine for what it is, and what it is appears to be an utterly unremarkable by-the-numbers courtroom drama.

At least the fetishization of Juliana Margulies's legs made Canterbury's Law stand-out, however pruriently.

HautieTx said...

I liked "The Good Wife" alot.

But was underwhelmed by NCIS: LA. Love the original NCIS, but I found the LA version lacking alot.

The one thing I always enjoyed about the Harmon version, is no one is trying to be bad asses. They are basically detectives for the Navy and work cases. With smart humor.

I already see the angle for the LA show is not to remotely look like a legit federal agency. Just blowing cr*p up and shooting guns.

Anonymous said...

Really looked forward to the CBS line-up this past Tuesday.
NCIS: Awesome, as always. Great jaw-dropping ending; one of my favorite shows.
NCIS-LA: Watched for the first 20 minutes and then got some things done around the house, so I wouldn't miss the next show...Wasn't intrigued by this spin-off.
The Good Wife: Great cast; really enjoyed the character's dynamics. Look forward to the next show. Maybe it will take the time-slot after the original NCIS!

nm said...

What rosengje said about Josh Charles. I will give the show a good chance, for his sake.

amysa said...

Count me in amongst the many who consider Josh Charles "must see". Even if the show sucked (which it didn't) I would still have given it a few shots just for him. I was happily surprised by it, though. There were a couple of things about it that bugged (Christine Baranski's character is a bit cliche), but I actually really liked it, way more than I thought I would. I have room in my life for another procedural and since Tuesday's kind of a dead night for me this season, then I'm happy to stick with it to see what happens. And if it winds up sucking, I'm happy to stick with it and just watch Josh.

One note to writers: could you make Titus Welliver a good guy? It would be a nice change of pace.

On the subject of NCISLA: I don't watch the original and just tuned into this one because I literally had nothing else to do at 9pm. I didn't think it sucked. It wasn't *great*, but it wasn't terrible. And this is the first thing I've ever actually liked Chris O'Donnell in. I agree w/ the snarking that he's bland and one note and I've disliked a lot of what he's done in the past, but I liked him as this guy. I'm not going out of my way to continue watching, but I won't actively seek out other things if I'm bored while waiting on "The Good Wife" to come on.

miles said...

The Good Wife seems formulaic to me. I could see things coming a mile away. And I don't get how the scandal that pushed her back to work will continue to be upfront. As that naturally fades away, it's just a show about a woman trying to prove herself amongst a bunch of folks much younger than her. Even that will run its course.

It's not bad, just not interesting after the pilot, I suspect.

amysa said...

I think it's pretty clear that it's going to turn into a procedural, but I don't think the "good wife" aspect will be pushed aside that quickly. I think the entire thing, however light it might be (and I don't think even *they* think they're being especially deep with this show) will be about her various obstacles in life. Given the way Noth was behaving and the phone call at the end, the next post-scandal obstacle will be her own husband's ego and her attempts to remain in the work place in spite of his (I'm guessing) objections to it. I would assume that this show will allow her to win far more than they'll make her lose, but as long as they develop the characters that won't be the end of the world.

I actually doing think the age issue will continue to be that big of a deal, I think it was just another easy way to make her "different" in the pilot. She and Josh are around the same age and Baranski's older than her. She already has Kalinda's respect, so that knocks out one of the two pricinple characters younger than her. I imagine that Czuchry's storyline will be more about his rich dad than being a young whippernsapper.

Chantal said...

I really enjoyed "Good Wife." Like several others, the casting of Josh Charles was icing on the proverbial cake. I couldn't be enticed to watch Canterbury -- I like Margulies but not enough to watch another mostly-boring law show, which is what the early reviews foretold for that one. But with the lure of Josh Charles, I put this one on my DVR list for the week. I'm turning it into a season pass. Very enjoyable. I hope it gets good ratings and a full season.

FWIW: I enjoyed the interaction between Alicia and the firm's PI. Two brainy women working together. Good stuff.

Omagus said...

I pretty much stumbled upon The Good Wife last night and decided to watch until I got bored with it. It actually turned out to be a pretty good show. Goodness knows that we don't need yet another legal procedural but the pilot did a good job of balancing scenes inside the courtroom with those outside.

Also, just to counter those who watched for Josh Charles, can I get a "Hello!" and an "Amen!" for Archie Panjabi? That woman is gorgeous.

miles said...

It just dawned on me that The Good Wife reminds me of that Kim Delaney show from some years back--Philly. That was a Bochco show with a similar plot in that she was a single mom defense attorney whose ex was the asst. dist. attorney--Kyle Secor. It only lasted one season, but I enjoyed it--mostly for how Bochco creates interesting characters and relationships. And focuses less on the procedural aspect.

Ladypeyton said...

I found The Forgotten to be derivative of the Lovely Bones. It was creepy and not in a good way.

erin said...

I'm not really a fan of Margulies, but Josh Charles is more than enough incentive for me to watch. The show wasn't bad, even though it lost me for a good 15 minutes at one of the commercial breaks, when I flipped channels and forgot to flip back. Hopefully the writers give Josh Charles more to do or this show lasts long enough to get him solidly back on the radar so he gets his own show soon. Maybe something with Peter Krause? What is Aaron Sorkin up to these days?

reverendflash said...

Regarding 'The Forgotten', the premise is silly, the characters are bland, and the plot of the pilot kept feeding us boring, expected cliches and uninventive plot development. Also, having a former cop in amongst the amateurs kind of kills that whole gimmick. Not to mention that every week's big payoff will be identifying an innocent murder victim and letting the family know that they can stop hoping now. (I LOVE a happy ending!) Slater's 'My Own Worst Enemy' was the entertainment flipside of 'The Forgotten'. The fact that, in one year, he can go from a Bondian thriller with a unique multi-personality storyline to this formulaic cookie-cutter dreck says a lot of bad about the current state of television.

Stacey said...

I loved the Good Wife! I think you should include it in your blog rotation. I think it is finally a hit show for Margulies since ER. I know I'll be blogging regularly about it!

Anonymous said...

I finally watched the pilot of "The Good Wife." There are a lot of legal exaggerations and inaccuracies, but I think it has some potential, despite the irksome errors, ridiculous objections, and overdramatized courtroom interaction. Marguilies is likable, and I hope this series is more than some pro bono case of the week.