My own TV viewing is a mixture of shows from each of the free to air networks and Foxtel. Most shows I don’t watch live, preferring to record them to watch later, filtering out the ads. Most week nights I am working till 6 or 7, after which I watch the 6pm news from ch 7, followed by Jeopardy on W on Foxtel – Jeopardy is a 15 minute show once you cut out the ads and bypass the obligatory game show “get to know the contestants” segment appearing after the first ad break. If I have been watching 7 news at 6 live, then I’ll normally leave it on for Today Tonight, but never go out of my way to watch the show. Occasionally I may flick over to A Current Affair if I have seen a story advertised I am interested in, but usually am unaware of what is on due to the fact I watch little ch 9, and when I do, it is recorded. Of all the channels, 9 is the worst to watch live waiting for shows to start late, finish late, and putting up with ads for trash shows like Wipeout or 20-1.
Last week, unmissable television for me was seeing Obama on Jay Leno (Friday night here, Thursday in US). I am surprised that one of the free to airs did not do a deal with Comedy Channel for that show only as I believe it would have rated well. He explained alotof what is going on in terms the audience would understand.
Next on the list, and this is not really in order, is Life On Mars (Thur, ch 10, 9.30). It is different to all other cop shows no at the moment – it reminds me of old cop shows as it should being se tin 1973. With the over-supply of procedural type crime shows on TV at the moment, Life on Mars definitely is different. In a way, I am glad it only has one season, so it does not get tired and fades away, like so many shows do these days. I’m praying ch 10 will keep it on, regardless of poor ratings.
I really enjoy the Mentalist (ch 9, Wed, 8.30 – really 8.35, April 1: 9.30). It does really well in the US, and should do so here as well, but suspect the fact it is on ch 9 and starts late every time its on doesn’t help. Simon Baker helps provide for a show that has some humour, unlike the majority of the other crime procedural shows. For the record, I don’t watch CSI or Criminal Minds, Cold Case, Without a Trace or Bones as they are too similar (in my opinion, but have tried them all at some stage).
I saw on “On Demand” on my IQ2 one day a show called Threshold (SciFi Thur 8.30). Its about an agency called Threshold who deal with alien contact with humans. Like all the crime shows, there is a group of people within the agency who deal with certain aspects of the investigation, each with their own quirks. Again, its very different and definitely entertaining.
Another one on cable is True Blood (Showcase, Tue 8.30). Interestingly, I noticed that this is on Free to Air in NZ! Story is about vampires, with a similar story line to Twilight. There’s a good review on TV Tonight from a while back (www.tvtonight.com, then search for “true blood”).
I also watch “Real Time with Bill Maher” on Comedy channel. (Comedy, Thur 9.30). Initially, I started watching it prior to the US election last year when they were discussion the issues of the election. While Bill Maher can be quite extreme in some of his views, the show is quite enjoyable and generates numerous topics of conversation at our place.
And yes, I am one of the 2.1 or so who watch Underbelly 2 (Mon, ch 9, 8.35). It’s nothing like it was last year, and there is more nudity than there needs to be, but still I find the story interesting. Again, maybe its the fact that it is set in the 70’s and early 80’s, but to me, it is different to most of what is on TV at the moment.
Which leads me to Packed to the Rafters (Tue, ch 7, 8.35). It stands out because it has nothing to do with crime. Its about a family. What else is on TV like it? It’s funny in parts, you can relate to alot of it, and its not hard to follow either. All reasons why it tops the ratings for ch 7.
Also on 7, City Homicide (Sun, ch 7, 8.30). The episodes have been getting better leading up to the season finale next week. Initially, I thought it felt out of place being on Sunday night instead of Monday. I am glad ch 7 stopped advertising new night for that and Border Patrol as every time I’d see the new night ad, I thought they would move them again. No reason to, they are doing OK at the moment, despite the higher publicity CSI gets.
And, as anyone who reads my stories will be able to tell, I am an ER fan. I am disappointed with 9 for not showing ER during ratings season. After hearing of their announcement of their 2nd SD channel launching later this year, I have some hope that they’ll put ER on that channel (not to mention countless others that have bumped or simply haven’t shown despite having the rights). I hope this channel is here sooner rather than later, but realistically, my prediction is the first week of non-ratings in summer so they can experiment prior to the 2010 ratings year. Currently, ER season 10 screens on 111-Hits, with season 11 about to start in April. I’ve also watched season 8 and 9 episodes on DVD recently.
I could go on for a while here on this subject, but will leave more for later – maybe after Easter when a few of these shows have finished and new ones fill my viewing habbits.