Saturday, December 16, 2006

Day Break Officially Cancelled


This makes me very sad, but according to futon critic, Day Break has been pulled from ABC's schedule:

"ABC is shuffling its deck chairs once again, pulling both Wednesday newcomers "Show Me the Money" and "Day Break" from its schedule effective immediately.

"As for their replacements, ... various repeats of "The George Lopez Show" and "According to Jim" will fill the network's Wednesday schedule on December 20 and December 27."

So they're taking a really good, well-written, intricate drama and replacing it with reruns of George Lopez and According to Jim. *headdesk*

Please note, though: "The network is expected to stream the seven remaining episodes of "Break" on"

I'll be there watching.

Damn, I need coffee...

Friday, December 15, 2006

Day Break--What If They Find Him

I'm still liking this show a lot. The story is moving along briskly, and each episode brings a take on the day different enough to hold our attention, yet with enough elements carried over to keep us oriented. And I like that things that have been stated as solved on previous episodes, such as the situation between Andrea and Eddie, remain solved here, thus enforcing the conclusion that Hopper is, indeed, able to make cumulative changes and, presumably, will be able to eventually resolve his situation.

This week, Hopper had to deal not only with some new twists and turns to the conspiracy he's slowly uncovering, but also with the unexpected consequences of his actions last week. Because Hopper stole the murder book--and continues to do so--both Damien and Chad are killed.

These two events comprise the whole of this episode's Day One. On Day Two, Hopper tracks down Damien to question him about Miguel Dominquez. Damien knows him as a sort of mythic boogieman figure, and won't have anything to do with him. He does, however, offer to help ID the Jane Doe. This leads them to a nun who's been safeguarding illegals for a long time. They find her picture in a box of photos--her name is Isabella Contrares. Damien then bails on the investigation. Chad is once again gunned down, only this time the killer is revealed as Hopper's sister Jennifer.

On Day Three, Hopper is able to snag the picture right away, and tracks down Isabella's mother, who is living in her own world where her daughter is still alive. The conversation with her leads them to a Mr. Detweiler, who got Isabella a job at a high-class club. Because he's with Damien, Hopper is able to prevent his death, but Damien leaves without him, apparently not all that grateful. Hopper discovers Chad was killed.

Day Four. Hopper tracks down Detweiler, who proves to be one of the guys from the gravel pit. Hopper goes postal on him and is threatened by Detweiler's wife. On Day Five, Hopper manages to stay calm for a while, but then threatens him, leading to Day Six, in which Hopper hands over the murder book and the hourglass to Detweiler and asks him to just make it all stop. Detweiler says it's not that simple, and apparently it isn't, because when he turns the evidence over to his boss, said boss is not pleased. Hopper has planted a bug with the evidence, though, and hears the boss order everyone killed. Hopper puts the pieces together--this is why Chad was shot. With several phone calls, he is able to abort the planned murders of Damien and Chad. At the quarry, Detweiler is buried in a dump truck load of sand. The shadowy boss then lectures Jennifer about the difference between a warning and an example.

So we get yet another layer of the mystery. Hopper's father is brought up again several times, but his connection to the past case, as well as the current, is still not made clear. Jennifer's reveal as a cohort of the bad guys is a surprise. This leads me to believe that the bruises on her arm weren't caused by an abusive husband, after all, as Hopper assumed, but were a result of something that happened between her and the shadowy boss or perhaps Detweiler. If Hopper's father was involved in the old Jane Doe murder, how is his sister involved in the current conspiracy? All questions I hope the show will be given enough time to answer. Unlike some other shows currently on the air, I have the feeling the writers know exactly where they're going with this one, and if they just get the opportunity to air enough episodes, we'll see some satisfying answers.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Bones--Judas on a Pole

Tonight's recap/review is a bit shorter than usual. Boy, it's a hectic time of year...

I've been looking forward to this episode, largely because of David Duchovny's turn as director, but also because the story sounded promising, furthering the plot involving Brennan's parents, which hasn't been touched on much since the first episode of this season. And I thought this episode really delivered. Duchovny's direction was solid, with individual touches that put his fingerprints on the episode without being distracting, and the plot had a nice array of twists and turns, without being overly obvious.

With a bit of a departure from the norm, this week's episode opens with a depiction of the actual murder that will make up the case. A man is killed, hung on a pole, and set on fire in grisly fashion. As the evidence comes together, it appears that the murderer was none other than Brennan's father, Max.

The victim proves to be an FBI agent who was involved in a frame-up twenty years ago. Evidence is planted on his body in the form of a handwritten note inside his mouth, and it turns out Max robbed the bank where the evidence about the frame-up was being held in a safe deposit box. Max murdered Delaney because the FBI knows he knew about the frame, and have been threatening Brennan and her brother to keep him in line. He delivers a message to back off via an old friend, a Father Coulter (Ryan O'Neal).

Booth's sense of justice leads him to jump right on the case, which leads him to the conspiracy within the FBI. He is suspended for going over the heads of his bosses, and things get pretty hairy for him and Russ before it's all over. Turns out the Deputy Director who suspended Booth was also part of the conspiracy. It also turns out Father Coulter is not what he seems to be. The plot is nicely convoluted, with the twist not depending on the identity of the killer this time, but on other elements of the story.

In the B plot, Zack defends his dissertation to a panel of forensics folk, one of whom is played by Kathy Reichs. He wants to continue working at the Jeffersonian if he gets his doctorate, but Cam tells him his appearance doesn't make him a credible witness if he has to appear in court. Enter Angela, who performs a makeover. Of course, we knew Zack wouldn't be leaving the Squint Squad, but the way this plays out is charming without being overwrought or treacly, and gives Zack a nice little spotlight.

The Brennan plotline here is interesting, with Booth and Brennan taking unexpected but very in character stances toward Max. Brennan has softened a great deal toward her brother, and the growth in their relationship is nice to see. It was also nice to see Caroline again, from last season's "The Man in the Morgue." She's fun, and I love the way she makes Booth all twitchy.

One thing I really have to wonder about, though, is why didn't Brennan recognize her father's voice?

Booth: "I'll take a stand-up crook over a crooked cop any day."
Booth being more concerned about losing his car than about losing his job.
Placebo singing Kate Bush's Running Up That Hill at the end. Great song, great use of it in this ep.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

He's Out...No, He's In...

Holiday activities prevented me from watching anything tonight (WEEPS), much less blogging it. However, the Heroes he's, wait, he's, wait, he's not sure yet... controversy frankly has me a bit miffed. From what I saw, it was pretty clear they were developing Zach as a gay character, which I thought was cool. Now suddenly everybody involved in the show is pulling back from that. Tim Kring's response doesn't help much. He's equivocating enough that I wonder if he's afraid of losing his job if he speaks out any more firmly. Yeah, I don't blame Kring for this. And I'm not convinced it's the actor's issue, either. I'm convinced it's the suits at NBC making them pull back, because network suits, as a general rule, are tweebs. I'm sure there's an exception somewhere, but probably not at NBC. I mean, this is the network that, in spite of putting Will & Grace on the air, refused to let Will have a boyfriend for ages, and then when he did they barely smooched at all (unless it happened in the last couple of seasons, which I didn't see). They seem to want to pretend they're progressive, but they're not really willing to put it all out there.

Anyway, I could be wrong about all of this, but that's the way it looks to me. I suppose we'll see how things fall out, not that it's terribly likely we'll ever hear the whole story. In the meantime, Pffffthhh to NBC for putting the brakes on a bit of prime time diversity.

Monday, December 11, 2006

The Lost Room

Tonight's two-hour intro sets up our premise. There are mysterious Objects spread throughout the world. Singly, they have magical powers. Some of these powers are cool, some deadly, others lame. There's a pencil that makes pennies, a nail file that puts people to sleep, a TV that makes you three inches taller if you tune to the right station, a pen that microwaves people, a watch that hard-boils eggs. And there's a secret cabal called the Legion gathering all the Objects to destroy them. Apparently there's also another secret cabal trying to collect them because supposedly if you have all of them you can see the mind of God.

The Object in play in the main plot is a motel room key that can open any door. When you use it, you end up in a particular hotel room, where supposedly some Very Bad Things happened. Upon leaving the room, you can apparently go wherever you want to go just by thinking about it. Our hero, Detective Joe Miller, comes into possession of this key. Unfortunately, in a run-in with the Bad Guys, who want the key, his daughter Anna disappears into the Very Bad Hotel Room. When the door is shut, the room resets itself, and things that are put into it disappear, including Anna. As if that alone wasn't dramatic enough, she disappears on the eve of a custody hearing with Miller's ex-wife.

Miller's quest of course becomes to regain his daughter. He encounters members of a sort of underground, all of whom have experienced the powers of the Objects. They suggest several plans for getting Anna back, all involving collecting certain Objects, including a Prime Object, a clock, that controls all the other objects. (One clock to rule them all?)

While I was intrigued enough by the premise to tune in, I found tonight's installment to be rather slow, and it didn't really hold my attention. Although things picked up a bit at the end, at this point I'm wondering how they're going to stretch this out for six hours. Peter Krause's forays into badassitude were unconvincing, and at times the seemingly promising premise became laughable. It's the kind of setup that could work really well in the hands of a Neil Gaiman or a Clive Barker, but this presentation is just missing that certain something that makes the viewer willing to suspend disbelief and go along for the ride.

And this really bugged me--Miller has a tiny little closet, and the door opens inwards. Why in the world would you have a door that opens inwards into a coat closet? That's just bad architecture.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Lost Room

In the face of multiple reruns and hiatuses this week, I'm going to catch The Lost Room on Sci Fi starting Monday night. Starring Peter Krause (Six Feet Under, Sports Night) and Julianna Margulies (ER), as well as Dennis Christopher (Deadwood, Angel) and Kevin Pollack (Santa Clause 3), this miniseries looks pretty promising. Entertainment Weekly describes it as "Riven meets Lord of the Rings."

This week's TV Guide has a short article about the show, in which Julianna Margulies says, "I'd never heard of hte Sci Fi Channel when I was offered this role." Sorry, but I gotta wonder what rock she's been living under...