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Nightfly's TV Week in Review #5 (Week of 8/8/10)

Written by Nightfly on Sunday, August 15 2010 and posted in Features

Outhouse tvphile Nightfly recaps some of his favorite shows from the previous week of television.

Nightfly's TV Week in Review #5 (week of 8/8/10)
written by Nightfly

TNT lived up to its bombastic name this week by taking a record four (4) of my six (6) scripted slots.  The network undoubtedly knows how to do drama, and this summer has provided definitive proof .  Their shows, this week, tackled racially controversial & culturally delicate subjects which is why they so dramatically dominate my Top 6 List.
Outhouser Dragavon won my inaugural Trivia Contest last week and thus jumped out to a quick lead in the initial race to five - as the first member to get five trivia questions correct gets a customized certificate (and a special gold medal graphic).
* Potential Spoilers Below *

6. Psych - "Shawn & Gus in Drag (Racing)" (USA)
The boys go hilariously undercover a quarter mile at a time in this street racing case of murder.  Incredibly awesome guest's Adam Rodriguez, Angus MacFadyen, Vanessa Minnillo & a Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 (Batman's model) drove this super-episode into the loving garage of my heart.  Car fans got some sweet eye candy of both the super & muscle variety, as well as a rip-roaring, nitros fueled drag race starring Henry's pickup truck!

5. Memphis Beat - "I Shall Not Be Moved" (TNT)
Guest Clarence Williams III hit a high note in this turbulent, hostage taking, tale of justice delayed.  I love how much this series integrates music into the stories and this epi represents another potent example.  Alfre Woodard continually charms & DJ Qualls made me LOL (thinking he got shot).  Veronica Cartwright cameod in this most emotionally powerful episode.
Jason Lee as Det. Dwight Hendricks

4. Rizzoli & Isles - "Money for Nothing" (TNT)
Certainly not the funnest story of the season, yet, definately one of the strongest (perhaps my favorite).  The series advertises that the leads are best friend's despite being "opposites", and that's never been more on display than this episode.  I'm glad Maura, in the end, chose justice once again over the alternative.  Like Rizzoli, for at least half the story the talented writers had me (regretfully) questioning which side Isles was on?  More McGill is always welcomed, however, not at the expense of such a serious tiff between Maura & Jane.  If nothing else, this story offered an object lesson into why public officials should never work on cases involving personal acquaintances.  Angie's legs looked great in her running shorts!  An orange Spyker C8 Laviolette stole scenes.

3. Dark Blue - "Shelter of the Beast" (TNT)
McDermott clearly revels in this role.  The entrancing Jordana Brewster's storyline came to a stirring (and heroic) conclusion.  Det. Dean Bendis (Logan Marshall-Green) chose well and in so doing earned a loyal fan in me.  Shaw & Rice share remarkable onscreen chemistry,... though I'm starting to wonder if theirs is a dark pairing.  Bruckheimer's brand of ballistic bravado was expertly applied in this epi's climactic gun battle.

2. The Closer - "Heart Attack" (TNT)
A disturbingly sad story on so many levels, Roxann Dawson (ST:VOY) directed this stunning episode to perfection.  If the organ harvesting case wasn't compelling enough, the Julio/Rubin resolution surely was.  Bruno Campos' (Nip/Tuck) guest performance turned this already great episode into a literal tearjerker  One this series' best episodes ever.

1. True Blood - "Night on the Sun" (HBO)
The powerhouse performances of Paquin, Moyer, & Deborah Ann Woll (Jessica) made this installment a truly landmark episode.  This series doesn't get much better than this.  Bill & Sookie's reunion was painfully hard earned [though glorious] , and, Eric's revenge on Eddington was something to behold.  Seemingly every character has an intriguing personal story this season.  I hope we get to see more Rene Lenier - he's one of my all-time favorite Bon Temps characters.
Deborah Ann Woll

Guilty Pleasure Award - Top Chef: Washington D.C. - "Restaurant Wars" (Bravo)
This series, after all these years, is seriously starting to bore me - Tom Colicchio didn't seem too enthralled by the 'wars' either.  Programs like these are repetitive enough that they really live or die by the personalities of their contestants.  The chefs left at this point just aren't that interesting to me.  The safe money's on Angelo winning now that Kenny's been shockingly eliminated,... and I unfortunately can't stand Angelo.  My inability to 'quit this show' is in doubt.  On a related note, ads are now running for a Top Baker spinoff coming soon... that'd be different enough to be worth checking out (especialy if it gets a cool host).


Guest Star of the Week: Clarence Williams III on Memphis Beat (TNT)

* New Feature *
Trivia Question of the Week:
Alfre Woodard appears on two of Nightfly's scripted List shows.
Name either of her character's from either one of those shows?

Current Medal Standings:
Dragavon: mvp.gif

~ Last week's answer: Duke Penzer {Winner: Dragavon}

* Reality Shows *

3. Work of Art/The Next Great Artist - "The Big Show" (Bravo)
I've certainly had my gripes about this show, but the finale proved to be delightfully surprising.  Abdi Farah, 23yr old artist, painter & sculptor won the $100k prize as well as a solo show at the Brooklyn Museum of Art.  I would've never predicted he'd beat fellow finalists, Peregrine & Miles, but his final show was, for my tastes, the best.  They're already casting for next season, so any versatile artists out there take note.
Abdi Farah
Abdi Farah: Next Great Artist

2. American Chopper: Sr. vs. Jr. - "Domani Studios Bike" (TLC)
Where family unity once reigned, we now get 'Senior vs. Junior.'  Senior, we learn, recklessly managed to drive OCC so far down the road of negative equity that his gleaming chrome 'n glass empire is now worth precisely $0.00.  Luckily for fans of sober sanity, the Teutul brothers are unified and newly joined by master-builder and fan favorite, 'The Vin Man' (a.k.a. Vinnie Dimartino).  Senior behaves so ridiculously classless in the opener that many fans have wondered if it's an act - I don't think it is.  One of the first demands Vin makes of Junior is to never hear nagging for coming back from lunch 5mins late (one of Senior's myriad pet peeves).  The finished Domani Studios bike came out just as gawdy and unedited as you'd expect from the desktop of Jason Pohl -- time spent at OCC now is really rather painful.

1. Top Gear: The Lost Episodes (BBC-America)
In this lost installment Richard Hammond took a trip to Switzerland, a land that bans motorsport, in pursuit of the "Craziest Car in the World".  His choice was the 2004 Rinspeed Splash - a surreal hydrofoiling aqua-car that seemingly flies across the water.  Elsewhere, in Scotland, Jeremy endeavors to take a Land Rover Discovery to the top of their highest mountain, and also spotlights the Dodge Viper SRT-10 which he described as, "internal combustion with a hint of spontaneous combustion."  For a second week in a row James May didn't have a feature?  Hopefully he'll have more to do in the upcoming Lost episode as he's, in many ways, my favorite of the three hosts.  Joanna Lumley, dubbed by Jeremy "The Fastest Grandmother in the World", was the "star in a reasonably priced car."

I'm not shy about issuing honorable mentions and this week's belongs solely to HawthoRNe.  It very nearly made my Top 6 List and I highly recommend it to any medical drama fans eager for the return of fall's doctor shows.  This week Marc Anthony gave us an impactful introduction to what I hope will be a recurring role.  Sarah Gilbert has also been entertaining.

Thanks again for your continued support & interest in this column and I hope to see you again next week for my sixth installment!


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About the Author - Nightfly

A proud member of NBCUniversal's and A+E Television Networks’ Digital Media Teams, Nightfly routinely interviews producers, creators and stars of various network programs and films with a concentrated emphasis on the Syfy channel. Formally educated in Communications, Computer Science and Music, his résumé reflects more than a decade broadcasting in the fields of television and radio. With pieces routinely published at ScreenFad and Press Pass L.A., his primary areas of interest include TV, film, music, web series, comic books, fashion, pen 'n paper RPG gaming as well as various other pop-culture topics. An avid Twitter user, Nightfly supports the arts, the entertainment community, numerous charities and crowdfunding projects through his journalistic netizenship and non-partisan, multicultural-centric activism.

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