Fall 2011 TV rundown

"Modern Family" deserved the recent Emmy recognition. The first few episodes of this season have been great, with excellent writing and character realization. I like that they don't rely on an audience or laugh tracks. I think I laugh more at this show than any episode of "Friends" or even "Seinfeld".

"Parenthood" looks at the modern family in a deeper more poignant way. Relationships and people are flawed and therefore require patching and attention like an old house. I hope they don't try to get too dramatic. The teasers for the rest of the season imply that that big, bad shit is gonna go down.

The premiere of "Up All Night" and "New Girl" were both compelling enough for me to set the DVR for a series recording. Episode 2 for both shows was a let down. I have not deleted the series recording ...yet. I'm not sure Zoe can carry "New Girl". The ensemble cast will need to pick it up for this show to work. Maya Rudolph and is great on "Up All Night". I like that Christina Applegate and Will Arnett were repeatedly bleeped in the first episode. Real people swear.

"Survivor" needs to ditch the Redemption Island bullshit and come up with a new way of revealing hidden immunity idols. Go Ozzie!

"Prime Suspect" looks like a winner. I'm actually looking forward to episode 2 after a really gripping premiere last week.

After listening to the Slate Culture Fest discussion on the shortcomings of "Pan Am" and "The Playboy Club", I think I'll skip both and go back to catch up with the entire catalog of "Mad Men" on Netflix.

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