The Boob Tube Review: Oct. 18, 2011

Every week, we discuss the television we've been watching. There are usually plenty of spoilers, so beware:

The Walking Dead: "What Lies Ahead"
Season 2, Episode 1, AMC

My weekly nightmares should continue if the season premiere of The Walking Dead is any indication of things to come. Lots of gore and action, as well as tighter writing, were quite welcome and appreciated. I was a little iffy if I was going to be able to watch season two but now I'm feeling pretty confident it will be even better than season 1 - especially if they finally shut up Andrea. - Cody McGraw

The Walking Dead is back with 100% more child endangerment. And a 100% more time spent in churches? Dudes, save the special-time heart to heart Jesus talk, y'all got more important things to worry about. Like, if there is a god, what is up with the zombie apocalypse?! Did Jesus just forget to come back in time? Or maybe he did, really didn't like what he saw and decided to scrap the whole rapture idea. Aside from that, Shane is the worst and I'd really like to see him become a zombie buffet. Clever guy he is, pulling his whole "yeah I tried to rape you but you've totally done some bad stuff, too" on Lori. Jerk-wad. And Norman Reedus needs to work on his American accent because he's starting to sound like a bad Clint Eastwood impression. - Alex Snider

American Horror Story: "Home Invasion"
Season 1, Episode 1, FX

American Horror Story is trying REALLY hard to be scary but the only reason I'm keeping with it is because of the incredibly creepy performance from Jessica Lange. Her nosey, Southern neighbour character has a lot of secrets and a backstory that could take this show to the next level if the show chooses to go there. Until then I'll deal with the minor scares and the usual horror cliches because this show is bound to take off. - CM

Ooh, I like this show! A lot! So much that every time I watch something that isn't American Horror Story I'm like why isn't this American Horror Story?! And yeah, Jessica Lange is a hundred kinds of awesome. Also, FRANCES CONROY. The whole horror genre is cliche, it's just how well they write the characters/plots/dialogue/pacing. So far I think they're doing a pretty good job. I'm excited to watch more. - AS

How I Met Your Mother:"Mystery vs. History"
Season 7, Episode 6, CBS

I am beginning to hope that Ted never actually met his 'soul mate' *gag* and he actually kidnapped the kids and as part of the police negotiations Bob Sagat is allowed to tell them the story of their 'mother' but clever fox he is, he pulls a Sheherazade. Or maybe the kids are actually Lily and Marshall's and out of pity they all let him out of the basement for an hour once a day and let him pretend his life-long dream of locking a woman down and impregnating her came true. Although if I was Lily I would have killed him, long-standing friendship or not, for getting all up in my pregnancy choices. And I guess Nora won't be the bride given her lack of actual screen time and inclusion in the group? Which means that Kal Penn won't be sticking around? Sad. Which means Robin and Barney will probably be together? Sadder. - AS 

The Office: "Garden Party"
Season 8, Episode 4, NBC

Last week The Office and I were in a fight and I'm pretty sure this episode was made to make up with me. "Garden Party" felt like a season 2 or 3 episode in which I actually laughed multiple times and got to see my favourite parts of all the characters. Jim was up to his old tricks, Dwight acted like an idiot and Andy yearned for acceptance in the group - even Gabe got to be showcased a little. I'm even willing to admit I'm starting to warm up to James Spader. Despite this, I still feel this should be the last season. - CM 

How To Make It In America: "Money, Power, Private School"
Season 2, Episode 3, HBO

All the way through the first season, How to Make It In America felt like a guilty pleasure. Maybe that's because it's produced by the same team who made Entourage? But a few episodes into the second season, I'm convinced this is a far better show than its Hollywood cousin. HTMIIA takes all the lovably clueless entrepreneurial energy that was always my favourite part of Entourage, moves it from LA to NYC, from vodka- and script-slinging to retro denim and t-shirt designs, and — most importantly — ditches the pisspoor sexual politics in the process. Then there's kickass character actor Luis Guzman (who you know from practically every movie P.T. Anderson and Steven Soderbergh have ever made) as the ex-con trying to go straight by launching a new Rastafarian-themed energy drink. And the newest addition to the cast: Gina freaking Gershon. I'm not feeling quite so guilty anymore. - Adam Bunch 

America's Next Top Model: "LaToya Jackson"
Cycle 17, Episode 5, CTV

ANTM returns this cycle with their first ever "All Stars" cast, featuring your favourite divas, drama queens and quirky doe eyed girls (Allison). After five episodes there is still no clear favourite, though I do have a soft spot for Laura and Kayla. Still though, this cycle comes off a bit stale with zero fresh faces to love or hate. I did enjoy this episode's tribute to Michael Jackson, which had each girl give their interpretation of different eras of Michael. LaToya Jackson appeared to assist in directing the shoot and participate as a judge on panel. However, her presence and comments added little to the episode I thought, especially since no one was chosen to go home.  -Carmen Cheung 

Dexter: "Smokey and the Bandit"
Season 6, Episode 3, Showtime

It was probably the lack of Molly Parker not the extreme hype I placed on this season so far but I found this episode pretty lackluster. Not Julia Stiles bad but just kinda meh. Everyone is back to normal: Deb's getting kicked around, Quinn's an asshole, Laguerta is an infuriating caricature of women in power, Dexter was chasing around annoying killers (this one was worse than most, well he was no Julia Stiles but he was a very crotchety old man and there were far too many gratuitous shots of him in his loosely-fitted greys). Even Adama wasn't doing it for me. And he always does it for me (ew, I don't know what that means). There's something up with Matsuka's new intern but I don't really care at this point, I just see another woman on Dexter using her sex appeal to get shit from the men (cause that's all the writers can write!). Meh.  - AS 

Up All Night: "Mr. Bob's Toddler Kaleidoscope"
Season 1, Episode 5, NBC

As if this wasn't already the best new show of the season, they get Will Arnett to make a reference to The Standells' "Dirty Water" when someone mentions Boston? Aw hell yeah. - AB


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