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November 27, 2014

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Brothers & Sisters: The Road Ahead (season premiere)

by Jane Boursaw, posted Sep 28th 2009 12:18AM
Brothers & Sisters: The Road Ahead

(S04E01) "William was a cheater. He had this bottle-blond tramp across town..." - Nora's mother to Holly


The dysfunctional Walker clan is back, and it didn't take long for the squabbling and worrying and break-ups and tragedies to surface. Things open right away with Nora's feeling of foreboding, and with this family, it's usually warranted. There's generally a nice mix of comedy and drama in Brothers & Sisters, and this episode followed suit.

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Hi I'm Jason, and Brothers & Sisters gives me the warm fuzzies

by Jason Hughes, posted Dec 1st 2008 9:00AM
Brothers & Sisters
Do you have those things on your favorite shows that just make you smile when they happen? It's not like it's the highlight of the show or anything; maybe it's just giving you those warm fuzzies inside. Maybe it's when Earl crosses something off his list on My Name is Earl. Or maybe it's as simple as when Penny sits in Sheldon's spot on The Big Bang Theory. Those familiar moments somehow make us feel like we're with old friends.

I get those. Most recently, I've been getting them when the Walkers of ABC's Brothers & Sisters are all on the phone together in some kind of mass speaker phone teleconferencing chain from hell. I'd say I don't normally watch these family soaps, but I've always liked Sally Field, and when she was recast as the matriarch of the Walkers, I found myself tuning in. This despite the fact that Ally McBeal's lips looked even puffier and she's still way too skinny. But then she married Rob Lowe and I've always liked him, too.

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Brothers and Sisters: Prior Commitments (season finale)

by Jen Creer, posted May 12th 2008 8:41AM
prior commitments051108
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S02E16) Rebecca: "I don't know what to do next."
Justin: "Me neither."

I cried twice during this episode. Maybe more. I cried when Nora told Kevin he deserved to have a beautiful wedding just as much as anybody else. And I also cried at two more points, but I'll talk about them below the jump. This was a beautiful episode of television. Even though I don't know that I have written about the music used in episodes, I thought the use of "Can't Find My Way Home" for the last two scenes was profoundly moving. Last year, I thought the season finale was a disaster because it ended with grand hijinks and everybody jumping into a pool. This year's season ended quietly on a beautiful sunny hillside, and it just about broke my heart. I am going to go out on a limb here and hope that this show wins an Emmy, because when they do it well, they really nail it.

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Brothers and Sisters: Moral Hazard

by Jen Creer, posted May 5th 2008 10:42AM
moralhazard050508(S02E15) "We should ask ourselves: 'What's the right thing to do?'" Holly Harper to Tommy Walker

So, what are we to think of Holly? Is she a pathological liar and a scheming manipulator? A greedy opportunist? Or is she genuinely trying to do the right thing as she sees it, affair with William Walker not withstanding? Honestly, I can't make up my mind, but I am leaning toward seeing her as a flawed person who is doing her best. Lord knows, she could have taken her inheritance from William Walker and kissed the entire clan goodbye. Perhaps some see her as unable to let go, unable to stop until she has revenge on the Walkers for having William in ways she couldn't. But that seems a rather extreme pathology. It's much more interesting to view her as a complicated human being, which has certainly been supported on the show.

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Brothers and Sisters: Double Negative

by Jen Creer, posted Apr 28th 2008 8:21AM
Justin and Rebecca[S02E136 "That was weird, wasn't it?" Justin Walker

I am starting to feel like Siskel and Ebert every week. Oh, that was a great episode! Oh, that episode sucked! It doesn't seem like there is any in between with me. Does that mean I'm too picky?

You know, it's funny because sometimes I don't even know how I feel about an episode, really, until I start writing about it, so my actual experience with watching it isn't necessarily negative, even if I write up a critical review. But tonight, I am pretty sure I know how I feel about it: That was a great episode.

Lots of things going on this week: Things are definitely heating up and charging down the runway toward May Sweeps and the end of the season, but they are things that have been set up for so long and so well that their very inevitability feels natural, unhurried, unforced, like a cart careening down a hill, picking up momentum, and heading into rush-hour traffic. And I'm not going to talk about it before the jump, so let's get going, shall we?

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Brothers and Sisters: Separation Anxiety

by Jen Creer, posted Apr 21st 2008 9:20AM
brothers and sisters 042008(S02E15) "I'm leaving to get away from all of you!" - Nora Walker to her darling children, about moving to Washington D.C. with Isaac.

Sometimes what I actually want to review is the scenes for next week's show, because it seems more interesting than the one I just watched. However, I know that many of you deliberately do not watch those clips, so we shall say no more on the subject. I am glad the Walkers are back, and I like how they have handled the time off due to the strike: they simply said, "Three months later," and picked up with events then.

Before that jump, though, we learned some important things: That Graham and Sarah are still dating, that Tommy and Julia are still happily together, and that Senator Robert McCallister loses the Republican Party's nomination for the Presidency, so Robert returns to the Senate.

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Brothers and Sisters: Compromises

by Jen Creer, posted Feb 18th 2008 2:02PM
Scotty(S02E14) "Do you think I'm uptight?" Kevin Walker to Sarah Walker.

"Yes." Sarah Walker to Kevin Walker

This was an immensely likable episode. If you have read my reviews from Season One in particular, you know that I tend to distinguish the episodes I like from the episodes I *really* like based on who wrote them. This episode was co-written by Cliff Olin, son of Patricia Wettig (Holly) and Ken Olin (David Caplan). Cliff has been writing for the show since its inception, and he is a young writer, barely in his mid-twenties. I have noticed an unevenness in his writings in past episodes, but I think he is finally starting to hit his stride.

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Brothers and Sisters: The Feast of Epiphany

by Jen Creer, posted Jan 14th 2008 1:05AM
Brothers & Sisters
(S02E10) "You slept with someone else too?" Nora Walker to Julia Walker

Oh, Brothers and Sisters, how I've missed your hijinx! I was under the impression from some of the news I'd read about the WGA strike that filming had ceased on the show, so I was very happy to have a new episode (albeit, feeling a little guilty, because I support the writers...). Mostly, I was happy to see everyone again.

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Brothers and Sisters: Holy Matrimony!

by Jen Creer, posted Dec 3rd 2007 9:02AM
kitty and robert wedding
(S02E09) "We could wake up tomorrow, and it could all go to hell."-- Robert McAllister

I have to admit: I would have owed Tommy $100. But not for the same reasons as Kevin and Justin. I will get to that in a bit though. Was it just me, or did this episode have some editing glitches? One minute Kitty is telling Robert that it's bad luck to sleep with the groom on the night before the wedding and Justin and Lena seem to be talking about the wedding being that day, and then Kitty is in the Walker kitchen working on her vows and the wedding is still a day away. Anyway, it wasn't a big deal-- it just seemed a little incongruous for a bit.

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Brothers and Sisters: Something New

by Jen Creer, posted Nov 26th 2007 9:19AM
Lyle Lovett
(S02E08) "Well, I'm a democrat, and I lost my virginity to "She's Got Legs."-- Sarah Walker

Did everybody lose their virginity to a song? I don't remember whether I did or not, but if you want to share yours, feel free. I loved it when Robert walked in and Nora asked him what song was playing when he lost his. And then when she revealed that her first time wasn't with their father. And that is all very well and good, but I personally have never found Chevy Chase (Stan Harris) to be particularly attractive. However, I am willing to put that aside and say that I thought he did a wonderfully understated turn as Kitty's Nora's (thanks, Jamie) first love, Stan Harris.

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Brothers and Sisters: 36 Hours

by Jen Creer, posted Nov 12th 2007 1:30AM
Kevin, Kitty, Justin, Nora
(S02E07) "Well, who'd chain you the radiator and poke you with a stick?" Sarah, knitting.

Meh. This episode was fine. It wasn't special. It was just kind of... filler. And I don't mean to cast aspersions on the show at all: That is what shows do leading up to November sweeps. They can't have anything really important happen right now. I hesitate to say anything negative about the writing these days because I fully support the WGA strike. But this episode felt forced. They totally set it up a few weeks ago when Justin started taking pain killers again, and they gave themselves a convenient family "crisis" to deal with now.

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Brothers & Sisters: Patriarchy (series premiere)

by Brett Love, posted Sep 25th 2006 6:29PM
Calista Flockhart - Brothers and Sisters(S01E01) I had an early look at this one a couple weeks ago, and finally premiere day is here. The Brothers & Sisters writers face a tough problem with the launch of the show. There is just so much information to convey to give the viewer an idea of who all of these people are. It leads to what sometimes feels like a rushed episode.

This also means that most of the happenings around the family in this episode are set-ups for future arcs that will involve the characters. Sarah (Rachel Griffiths) and Tommy (Balthazar Getty) discovering the financial shenanigans of Uncle Saul (Ron Rifkin), Justin's (Dave Annable) hangups from his past, and Kitty's (Calista Flockhart) relationship with her mother (Sally Field) are all clearly things that we will be looking at closer as the show moves along. For me though, the highlight of this episode was the confrontation between Kitty and her mother.

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Alias spin-off with Sloane, Sark and Peyton?

by Keith McDuffee, posted Dec 22nd 2005 11:23PM
sark aliasWhen ABC decided that this was going to be the last season of Alias, J.J. Abrams wasn't in on the discussions. It wasn't until after the decision was made that Abrams was called while filming Mission Impossible 3 in China. While he's not all that surprised at the decision, he is saddened to see it end . . . make that "somewhat" end. Abrams has been discussing the possibility of doing something (spin-off? TV movie?) involving the characters Sark (David Anders), Peyton (Amy Acker) and Sloane (Ron Rifkin). Y'know, I might be OK with that idea, but only if they do something fresh with it; the whole Alias vibe to me is stale.

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