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On the 6th day of Festivus, TV gave to me ... - VIDEOS

by Isabelle Carreau, posted Dec 18th 2008 10:03AM
Reaper... six shows you should be watchin'.

Chats around the watercooler often are about last night's big football game, why Izzie is sleeping with Denny on Grey's Anatomy, or the latest OMG! WTF? twist on Lost. Rare will be the conversations about the latest evil-doer that Sam and his friends had to capture on the latest episode of The CW's Reaper. Thing is, some of us do want to gossip about Reaper, but it seems like we are the only ones around the watercooler to watch it. "How can this be?" we ask ourselves, knowing how cool the show is (especially the Devil)!

is just an example, as there are tons of shows that people should be watching but seemingly don't. Here I bring you a list of six shows that I think you (or your friends and family members) should be watching and why. I restricted my list to shows that air on one of the major networks - so that everyone has easy access to them - and series that will still be on the air in winter 2009.

1. Chuck, NBC - I don't understand why Chuck isn't getting better ratings. The series is clever and fun, has loads of spy action, features a cool ensemble cast, has a hot chick for the guys to drool over, and makes loads of references to other TV series/movies/video games.

Need more convincing? The series doesn't take itself seriously, which is why it's great fun to watch it weekly. The recent addition of Arrested Development's Tony Hale as recurring character Emmett Milbarge just adds to the wackiness of the show. If you were a fan of FOX's Firefly, you must watch Chuck just for the joy of watching Adam Baldwin playing socially-awkward but spy-extraordinaire agent John Casey. Just so you see how much fun the series is, I suggest you watch the video below which is a collection of some of the best scenes of the first season per one of the show's avid viewers.

2. Fringe, FOX - When Fringe premiered, a lot of people complained about the storylines not making total sense, the fact that it looked like the writers were writing solutions to the problem of the week on the spot, and the characters not being interesting at all. In a surprising move, FOX decided to give a show a chance and even ordered a full season! With a few episodes under its belt, the series is actually getting good. The show's mythology is finally coming together and starting to make sense; the characters are finally getting personalities and background; and it looks like the writers do have an idea of what they're doing and where they're heading with the series.

If you like mysteries, sci fi, crazy scientists, wacky experiments and FBI agents with loads of issues, Fringe is the series for you! It also has loads of things to try to make sense of and keep tabs on, such as The Observer and Massive Dynamics. If you decide to give Fringe a chance when it comes back with new episodes at the end of January, I suggest you watch a few episodes online or read the TV Squad reviews in order to bring you up to speed with the show's mythology. That way, you'll enjoy the series even more.

3. Reaper, The CW - Back in April, TVSquadder Debra wrote why she was excited for Reaper to be back on the air. Her reasons are exactly why you should watch the series when it returns for a second season of 13 episodes on March 17: the devil, the back story, Gladys, the pranks the gang pulls on their boss Ted, the vessels, and the fact that it is getting almost Buffy good.

Since the series only returns in three months, you have loads of time to catch up by buying the season 1 DVD or watching online. With Reaper, you're sure to be taken on a fun ride with wacky characters, some cool demon/underworld mythology, interesting demon-of-the-week plots, and an ongoing mystery that involved lead character Sam and the Devil that has yet to be fully revealed. Just watching Ray Wise as the Devil and Dead Like Me's Christine Willes as Gladys is worth buying the season one DVD and watching season two when it airs. If you have yet to watch the series, below is the video presentation of the series before it premiered. It gives you a good glimpse of the story and the characters.

4. Privileged, The CW - When The CW sent me a review copy of the show's pilot, I must admit I wasn't that intrigued. Reading the back cover of the DVD made me think this series was somewhat a rip off of The O.C. or Gossip Girl and that it would be canceled rather quickly. Boredom eventually got the best of me, and I watched the DVD. Since then, I haven't missed one episode of the series! Why was I hooked, you ask? Two words: Joanna Garcia. The actress is just delightful in the role of Megan Smith, a tutor to two bratty teens. She definitely grew up since playing Cheyenne on Reba. In Privileged, Garcia shows that she has some good acting skills and can lead the cast. Personally, I find myself caring about her character and storylines. I even care about those bratty teens now and look forward to seeing what trouble they'll get themselves into next.

Let's face it, the series is not the best one out there, but it offers an entertaining hour of TV every week that is similar to what The O.C. used to offer: drama mixed with some lighter and funnier storylines. You can watch reruns of Privileged during the Holiday hiatus. New episodes will air from January 6 through March 10, when the series will conclude its first season of 18 episodes.

5. The Big Bang Theory, CBS - Back in August 2007, I had the chance to review the pilot of the show. Back then, I used the word "big disappointment" when referring to my viewing experience of TBBT. However, I did say that the series had potential if the writing and acting improved. Since I didn't care much about the pilot, I didn't make the new sitcom part of my weekly TV viewing lineup. But things changed when CBS picked the series for a full season and actually renewed it. Was I wrong in dissing the comedy so fast?

I did a quick Internet search to read viewers comments and decided that TBBT was indeed a show that I should be watching. When the second season premiered, I decided to tune in (well, tape it since I want to watch Chuck live) and haven't tuned out since then. The geek inside of me enjoys watching the lead characters embrace their geekiness and try to make it in the outside world and get the hot girl. It's always fun to see what the characters will come up with next. Ever played rock, paper, scissors? Well, in TBBT land, it's rock, paper, scissors, lizard, Spock. Huh? Watch the video below, which not only explain how this version of the game works, but also show how fun the series is.

6. The Mentalist, CBS - Two reasons why you should be watching: 1) actor Simon Baker, 2) character Patrick Jane. The premise of the show is a mixture between Psych and CSI: each week, cops must solve a death and to do so, they get help from a man who pretends to be a psychic but isn't; he just has sharp observation skills and can read people really well.

Simon Baker just lights up the screen whenever he appears, and actually makes me smile. His charm and confidence is almost palpable through the screen. Those of you who watch have to admit that when Baker smiles, you can't help but smile as well. Character Patrick Jane (played by Simon Baker) is a complex man who suffered the loss of his wife and child five years ago - both killed by a serial killer named Red John. It is a delight to see Jane try to solve a crime, especially since he doesn't follow protocol and pretends to be psychic. He tells it as it is most of the time, and he's not afraid to push the envelope when needed and ask the right questions. Jane is also a prankster of sorts and loves having fun with the people he works with.

The Mentalist
not only offers a case of the week that viewers sometimes have a hard time solving, but also has the ongoing search for the infamous John Red in the background. If you like CSI, Psych, NCIS and the likes, The Mentalist is definitely a show you should be watching. To learn more about the actor, the character and the series, I suggest you watch the "Simon Baker stars as Patrick Jane" video in which charming Baker, speaking with his lovely Australian accent, tells us about complex Patrick Jane.

Since I had to limit my list to six shows, it's a given that I've missed tons of cool shows people should watch! Why not make your own suggestions in comments below and tell us why we should start watching these shows?

Seven shows a-thrivin'
Eight stars a-shinin'
Nine foreign Americans
Ten shows on DVD
Eleven babes worth watchin'
Twelve shows a-stinkin'

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Uhh, what about "Life" and "Sarah Connor Chronicles"?

How could you leave those two out?

December 18 2008 at 9:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thanks for the shout-out to Reaper. We need more fans like you to spread the word about the March 17th premiere and why they need to watch this season. And as mentioned, there are loads of online fans talking Reaper and getting their news at ReaperDMV (reapertwop.proboards58.com). We invite you and all fans of the show to join us there.

December 18 2008 at 9:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Reaper is quite entertaining, and Ray Wise is the main reason I watch it, not to say the other aspects aren't good. I had only seen him in his short stint on 24 and in the Burn Notice series premiere, and I'm now to see him in a regular role.

December 18 2008 at 8:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I watched the first season of Chuck, then the strike came along and my interest flitted away. I have never seen a single second of any of the others on that list.

December 18 2008 at 6:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

A large percentage of this reads like my list of things I wish I had time to watch - specifically Fringe, Reaper and Big Bang Theory.

I do watch Chuck faithfully, though. Oh, and for those who say Chuck isn't nerdy enough? Hate to break it to you, but not every nerd looks/acts like they should be on BBT or The IT Crowd.

December 18 2008 at 6:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Scott Schrantz

The Mentalist is a Top Ten show now, it was even #1 a couple of weeks ago. So I think it can now be left off the "shows people aren't watching" lists. Make room for some other quality shows. Or maybe just put Reaper twice to make double sure people watch it!

December 18 2008 at 3:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Blue Sunflower

If you want to gossip about Reaper, we've got plenty of places to talk at the DMV, not to mention people to talk with!


December 18 2008 at 3:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"... but also has the ongoing search for the infamous John Red in the background.."

Don't you mean "Red John"?

December 18 2008 at 2:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Preach's comment
Isabelle Carreau

Fixed. Thanks for pointing it out.

December 18 2008 at 2:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I TOTALLY second the FNL promotions on here. It is without a doubt the best show that no one is watching. I can hardly wait for January 16th to roll around.

If you want to see some raw, real-life drama... watch FNL. So true to life...

December 18 2008 at 12:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Chuck? Excuse me, I'll be chucking this one.

December 18 2008 at 12:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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