If you like funny things

Last night was the second episode of ABC’s new sitcom Samantha Who?, and I don’t think it’s too early to put this one in the win column. Think of it as the girl version of My Name is Earl: someone who used to be bad now desperately wants to change their life, only the twist this time is that Sam doesn’t actually remember being bad. Oh, I love a good amnesia story when it’s done right. And this is done very right. Christina Applegate is a great comedic actor, and she absolutely nails both the new Sam and the bad Sam that we see in flashbacks. So far, each moment of horror as she realizes what sort of person she used to be has been classic, and much of the comedy comes from the fact that she is equally horrified at discovering the major things, like how she was cheating on her boyfriend, as she is to realize she made her secretary “start her apple” for her every morning.

The rest of the cast is also sharp. Fellow sitcom vet Jean Smart vamps it up as the crazy, vapid mother, and watching her and Applegate play off of each other is just fun. Jennifer Espisito (who I just realized could be funny in her nympho turn on Rescue Me this season) and Melissa McCarthy (pathetically underused on the final seasons of Gilmore Girls) clash gleefully as two very different sorts of friends from Sam’s past.

I’m definitely looking forward to seeing more, and not just because I finally get to have a Barry Watson fix without watching a really crappy show. (Alright, alright, I did enjoy What About Brian for a while–but I didn’t like myself afterwards.)

Other thoughts on how the season’s shaping up:

–I never got around to watching another episode of Chuck, but I have been continuing to enjoy Reaper. Bonus: apparently it’s set in Seattle. Last week they had a great time at our Apple Festival down on the pier, with our majestic suspension bridge in the background. Uh, yeah. It’s okay, I’m not watching for geography.

–I haven’t totally given up on Private Practice, though it’s in danger of entering late-second-season-Desperate-Housewives territory (loss of DVR privileges, though I’ll catch it if I’m home when it’s on). I did, however, abandon Bionic Woman. Terrible second episode.

–Everyone who gave up on Grey’s Anatomy when things got a little murky last season should come on back. After the third episode of this season ended, I actually yelled out “Stellar!” and started clapping. Seriously. Okay, I was a little buzzed. But the point stands.

Friday Night Lights continues to be a remarkable example of everything you can possibly get right on a TV show. I’m not even that bothered by the over-the-top Tyra and Landry murder storyline, because really what it’s all about is the way that experience reverberates through their relationship. I truly hope this show at least gets to have a full second season.

–Finally, I didn’t tune in to the apparent Space-Shuttle-explosion-level disaster of Viva Laughlin, which was dead after two episodes, but I was happy to hear the news that the cancellation means the early return of the best reality show on TV, The Amazing Race. November 4th! Can’t wait to see you, Phil!


2 Responses to “If you like funny things”

  1. 1 patty October 24, 2007 at 9:17 am

    gross, barry watson is not cute. i want to rip his annoying nose off his fecking face.

  2. 2 Sara October 26, 2007 at 12:43 am

    That’s really funny, my grandpa just recommended Christina Applegate’s new show to me. Now I’ll double have to check it out!

    I watched Bionic Woman on your (potential for Faith vs. Buffy elements) recommendation so now I’m somehow offended that you don’t like it anymore. I still like it. There are the obvious fighter girl reasons, the Asian guy having a relationship on television aspect, (even though he did shoot her in the head… all relationships have their rough patches, just makes it more realistic……) and because I love Starbuck and her brunette semi-buddy who I initially thought was ugly but now see that I was quite wrong. It is a fairly Bourne too, what with her waking up with all these abilities, and I love anything reminiscent of my husband Jason.

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Other projects:

Downton Gabby: podcasting about Downton Abbey from a funny, foul-mouthed, feminist perspective

Quick Lit: reading one short story a day in 2015

Grand Dames: collecting sundry achievements of admirable women

The MacGuffin: archive of my days as a film critic

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