Lisa Marie’s Week In Television: 3/26/23 — 4/1/23

Here’s some thoughts on what I watched this week!

Accused (Tuesday Night, FOX)

This week’s episode featured a couple seeking revenge on a white supremacist who drove a car into a protest and who was never punished for his crime.  The search for vengeance is usually a compelling topic and the episode had the potential to explore some very interesting ethical issues but, as has been the case for many of Accused‘s more recent episodes, it was all a bit too heavy-handed to really work.  It didn’t help that this week’s episode was rather poorly acted by almost everyone involved.  A part of me thinks that Accused‘s biggest weakness is its anthology format.  Between introducing a new group of characters on a weekly basis and also trying to tell a complex story, Accused often seems as if it’s trying to cram a bit too much into just 45 minutes of runtime.

The Bachelor (Monday Night, ABC)

It’s over, that’s the important thing.  It’s hard not to feel that, for all of the drama surrounding sex week, Zach mostly just slept with Gabi because he knew he probably wasn’t ever going to see her again after he dumped her for Kaity.  This was a season of The Bachelor that left me feeling just a little bit icky so let us never speak of it again.

Dirty Pair (YouTube)

I watched this 90s anime on Saturday morning.  The plot was next to impossible to follow but a lot of things blew up and the theme song was pretty cool.

Farmer Wants A Wife (Wednesday Night, FOX)

Agck!  Listen, just because you marry a farmer doesn’t mean that you have to castrate a bull.  Seriously, I’ve spent some time on some farms and I’ve seen some bulls and I assume that I’ve met some people who have castrated bulls but it was definitely not something that I needed to know about or be in any way involved with.  Just saying.

Five Days At Memorial (Apple TV+)

I started watching this absolutely devastating miniseries on Saturday.  I’ve still got one episode left to watch so I’m going to hold off on saying much more about the show until I’ve watched that episode.  I will say that Five Days At Memorial, which deals with what happened at a New Orleans hospital in the aftermath of Katrina, features some truly horrific images but it’s not just out to shock the audience.  There’s a lot going on beneath the surface and it’s impossible to watch this series without wondering what you would have done if you had found yourself in the same situation as the doctors and the nurses at Memorial Hospital.  I’d like to think that I would have refused to abandon my patients.  I would also like to think that I would have been the one person willing to stand up to the doctors who had decided to play God.  But, in the end, it’s impossible for me to say what I would have done in that situation because I’ve never been in that situation.

Ghosts (Thursday Night, CBS)

Todd, the obnoxious podcaster, returned!  Alberta was happy when her great-granddaughter checked into the B&B but Alberta was much less happy when it looked like she might hook up with Todd.  This was a sweeet episode.  Not only was it nice to watch Alberta discover that her talent had been passed down to her descendants but it’s always enjoyable to watch the ghosts recoil from Todd’s very presence.

Half Nelson (YouTube)

I reviewed Half Nelson here!

Law & Order (Thursday Night, NBC)

I enjoyed this week’s episode of Law & Order, mostly because everyone from Cosgrove to Sam to McCoy got a chance to call Price out for being arrogant and self-righteous.  Sam is typically such an underwritten character that it was immensely satisfying to watch her shut down Price with an armor-piercing one liner.  (It’s just unfortunate that the show left some ambiguity as to whether Sam’s anger was motivated by her ethics or her feelings for Price.)  Price definitely did not prove the judge’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt and I imagine the verdict will get overturned on appeal.  To be honest, I kind of suspect that’s what happens with most of the guilty verdicts on this show because some of Price’s legal strategies are seriously unconstitutional.

(No, I don’t know why I’m taking Law & Order so personally.  If I can figure out why, I’ll let you know.)

The Love Boat (Paramount Plus)

I wrote about The Love Boat here!

Night Court (Tuesday Night, NBC)

I watched it but I don’t remember a thing about it.  I do know that I groaned whenever anyone other than Abbi and/or Dan was onscreen.

Poker Face (Peacock)

“Play Staplehead!”  I watched the fourth and the fifth episodes of Poker Face this week.  After initially being hesitant about the show, I have to say that I’m pretty much hooked now.  The fourth episode, with the heavy metal band murdering their drummer so that they could steal a song that he unwittingly stole from an old sitcom, was wonderfully executed.

Saved By The Bell (Wednesday, E!)

E! was doing a Saved By The Bell marathon!  I watched the No Hope With Dope episode.  I loved how everyone else was talking about celebrities who had died as a result of doing too much cocaine and Jessie immediately started talking about how she was hooked on caffeine pills for a week.  Like, I get the feeling Jessie probably brought up that experience a lot and her friends probably got tired of having to listen to her go on about it.

Survivor (Wednesday Night, CBS)

I wrote about Survivor here.  Poor Matthew!  He seemed like a genuinely good guy and my heart broke for him when he talked about how much pain he was in.  That said, if I never have to watch that clip of him falling off a cliff again, I’ll be happy.  Seriously, I was shocked he wasn’t pulled from the game earlier.  (I do hope that he gets a second chance.)

Tulsa King (Paramount Plus)

I finally got around to watching the first episode of this show.  Sylvester Stallone plays an old school mobster who is released from prison and sent down to Oklahoma by his bosses.  The Family says that they want Stallone to set up business down there but actually, they just want to get him out of New York.  I have to admit that, as much as I like Stallone, I didn’t care much for the first episode.  Maybe if everyone in Tulsa was a jerk, it would be fun to watch Stallone threaten them but everyone seemed to be so nice that I just wanted Stallone to go back to New York.  I’ve been assured, though, that the show gets better so I’m not going to give up on Tulsa King just yet.

Waco: American Apocalypse (Netflix)

This three-part docuseries about the siege of the Branch Davidian compound in Waco is a real Rorschach test.  Do you watch it and see a story about a manipulative and dangerous cult leader or do you watch it and see a record of law enforcement incompetence and government arrogance?  Either way, it was a fascinating and thought-provoking look at the tragic siege.

Welcome to Chippendales (Hulu)

I binged this miniseries on Sunday.  It was enjoyable in its own tacky way.  Murray Bartlett was well-cast as the doomed choreographer.  Kumail Nanjiani should play more villains.

Yellowjackets (Showtime)

I’m glad that Yellowjackets is back for a second season and I’m intrigued to see what happens.  But seriously, I am so worried about what’s going to happen to the new dog!

Retro Television Reviews: California Dreams 4.13 “We’ll Always Have Aspen” and 4.14 “Lorena’s Place”

Welcome to Retro Television Reviews, a feature where we review some of our favorite and least favorite shows of the past!  On Saturdays, I will be reviewing California Dreams, which ran on NBC from 1992 to 1996.  The entire show is currently streaming on YouTube!

The California Dreams are in Aspen!  Wait …. what?

Episode 4.13 “We’ll Always Have Aspen”

(Dir by Miguel Higuera, originally aired on January 6th, 1996)

This episode opens with the California Dreams in Aspen, Colorado, hanging out at the Costa Ski Lodge.  Why are they there?  They’re there because this episode was originally meant to air during season 3, after the episode where the Dreams went to the ski lodge and convinced Lorena’s father not to kick that old crank out of his isolated cabin.  Why did NBC hold off on showing this episode for so long?  I’m not sure but it certainly does lead to some odd continuity errors.  For instance, Tony announces that he’s “hunting ski bunnies.”  Obviously, this was meant to air before Tony and Sam became a couple.  Lorena and Jake are also dating in this episode.

This episode is also one of the rare ones to focus on Mark.  Mark is shocked to discover that his ex-girlfriend, Jenny (Catherine Nagan), is staying at the lodge.  As he explains it, he and Jenny were once totally in love but then Jenny left him so that she could train to be on the U.S. Olympic skiing team.  At first, Mark refuses to speak to Jenny but then Jenny explains that leaving him was the biggest mistake of her life and that she is tired of skiing.  Mark and Jenny spend the day together and Mark realizes that Jenny actually does love skiing too much to give it up.  So, Mark gets dumped again but this time, he was the one who suggested that Jenny should break up with him so I guess he feels better about the only member of the Dream to never have a romantic partner for longer than one episode.

In the B-plot, Lorena’s father leaves Lorena in charge while he goes off to do …. well, I’m not sure why he left.  But him leaving means that Lorena is in charge of the big winter festival.  Why would her father leave Lorena, who is a teenager, in charge of the Lodge’s biggest event?  I’m starting to suspect that he is just not a very good businessman.  Anyway, all of this leads to Jake having to wear a silly costume and Sly taking part in a yodeling contest.  That was kind of funny.

This wasn’t a bad episode and it was nice to see Lorena and Jake back together but …. eh.  The California Dreams belong the beach.  They’re surfers not skiers.

Episode 4.14 “Lorena’s Place”

(Dir by Don Barnhart, originally aired on March 30th, 1996)

The first thing that I noticed about the 14th episode of the fourth season of California Dreams is that it aired over two months after the 13th episode, which itself was an episode that had been filmed for the 3rd season.  I don’t know what exactly was going on behind the scenes at NBC but it appears that the network decided to end season 4 by burning off a few old episodes that, for whatever reason, didn’t air when they were originally supposed to.

(Of course, Saved By The Bell did the same thing.  The episode where Screech is made hall monitor was filmed for the first season but, oddly, didn’t air until after the show’s Graduation episode.)

This episode finds the Dreams back in California.  Eager to date a pretentious douchebag named Alan, Lorena turns her loft into a coffeehouse and hosts a poetry reading.  Lorena also reads Alan a poem that her father wrote for her mother but which Lorena claims that she wrote for Alan.  Alan is so impressed that he memorizes the poem.  Then, after Lorena tells him the truth, he destroys the poem.

Oh no!

Not to worry.  The Dreams hold another coffeehouse reading.  Alan, for some reason, comes to that one as well and recites the poem.  Sam records his words and recreate the poem for Lorena’s parents.  So, not only is the poem saved but Lorena gets a new boyfriend!  But Alan kind of sucks so hopefully, he’ll never show up again.

This episode was very 90s but it was a Lorena episode and, since Lorena is the character to whom I most relate, I enjoyed it.

Next week: Season 4 comes to an end!

Live Tweet Alert: Watch Creature From Black Lake with #ScarySocial

As some of our regular readers undoubtedly know, I am involved in a few weekly live tweets on twitter.  I host #FridayNightFlix every Friday, I co-host #ScarySocial on Saturday, and I am one of the five hosts of #MondayActionMovie!  Every week, we get together.  We watch a movie.  We tweet our way through it.

Tonight, for #ScarySocial, I will be hosting 1976’s Creature From Black Lake!

It looks like a classic to me!

If you want to join us on Saturday night, just hop onto twitter, start the film at 9 pm et, and use the #ScarySocial hashtag!  The film is available on Prime.  I’ll be there co-hosting and I imagine some other members of the TSL Crew will be there as well.  It’s a friendly group and welcoming of newcomers so don’t be shy.

And don’t watch alone!