Canned TV, that is what in Colombia people call American sitcoms. I am not sure if a similar term is used here or not, but I am proud to say that Colombia finally returned the favor. A new sitcom from ABC, Salma Hayek produced Ugly Betty, was actually first a Colombia “novela” (Soap Opera). I watched the Soap Opera called pretty much the same thing “Betty la fea” (Betty the Ugly) a couple of time and it seems to be a pretty accurate adaptation. The story centers around unattractive Betty, who lands a job for a fashion magazine out of pure luck. The season premier was an hour long and it was a pretty good show, it almost had a Brit flavor to its humor at times. I think you should catch it, and ABC made it pretty easy since if you missed the first episode you can watch it online for free. Not to spoil it for anyone but this is an ugly duckling story and Ugly Betty ends up being not so ugly after all. Check out the actress that played in the Colombian version.
CBS also captured my attention with Jericho. This new show is very interesting and seems to give you more questions than answers in an episode. I enjoy that format so far. I actually did not catch the season premier, but my friend Mark told me what happened and I was able to catch on pretty quickly. Here is a little recap of what has happened so far. Jack, the main character, returns to his town of Jericho. No one really knows where he has been but he seems a natural born leader as well as the rest of his family. Then the worse happens, there seems to be a nuclear explosion in Denver. Even though Jack was just visiting he now has to play the role of here and get people to safety. The whole town ends up split in groups. The nuclear rain is coming and everyone is looking for shelter, those with basements seal themselves in their houses, then some go into the fallout shelter under city hall and the rest Jack seals inside of a mine. There are several plotlines developing and you really want to uncover all the secrets.
The only show that returns that I enjoy just as much as when I started watching it is The Unit. This military drama where the Allstate guy is the unit leader delivers the perfect mixture of drama and action in every episode. I have to say that the acting level in this show is excellent. This show is easy to pick up since the story line is not overly complicated and every episode involves a different mission in a remote location of the globe while the wife’s have no idea if their husbands will come back in one piece. The first season just came out on DVD and even though I am not the biggest fan of TV on DVD, this one is worth at least a rental.
CSI is disappointing me a little. Even though the show is still something I like to watch, they are doing something very annoying. The first two episodes have been connected by one of the murders that gets resolved in the following episode. While this creates a syndication headache I don’t like the cliffhangers from this show. One of the cool things about CSI is that in previous seasons one episode would solve two murders, and even their “to be continued” episodes did not feel like they dragged. This new format takes away the instant gratification that past seasons delivered.
Last but not least is Survivor. The race tribes have been merged and the game is now truly starting. I am not sure if Survivor is starting to get stale or not, but I really need to see something new and not another race like gimmick. So that is what the fall season is looking like to me. I hope that the new shows keep on delivering.