You may have noticed that I’ve been MIA for most of the summer. I was kind of busy being miserable in the Texas heat during my third trimester, and then figuring out how to handle two kids once I had my baby boy in early August. I’m starting to regain control of my schedule again now, so I thought I’d start off my latest attempt to get back into this blog by giving a recap of my summer entertainment – tv, movies, plays, etc.
- Spring TV Catch Up – Somewhere along the way in May and June, my husband and I fell way behind on our regular tv shows. It took us most of the summer to finish out the seasons of Glee, Fringe, 30 Rock, Community, etc. As much as we love Glee, it was the last show that we finished watching. Maybe we couldn’t stand the thought of no new episodes for three whole months! I am happy to report that we have cleaned out our Tivo’s Now Playing List, except for one episode of Parenthood and the second half of V’s first season (we’re not even sure if we’ll continue watching this show, so it doesn’t really count).
- Parenthood – Speaking of Parenthood, I am officially in love with this new show. It has been my comfort TV for the past month. I am so glad that I saved all the first season episodes, even though I had never gotten around to watching them during the regular season! I plan on writing a separate post for this show – it very much deserves the attention! I am excited about the second season premiere, which is just around the corner.
- Supernatural – Over the past year or so I’ve been catching up on this WB/CW show, which I originally stopped watching after season two, when there were simply too many choices on Thursday nights. I have thoroughly enjoyed Sam and Dean’s continuing adventures. I still have four episodes left to watch from last season, but I should finish them in time to enjoy the new season’s episodes without having to wait for them to come out on DVD. I’m sure there will be a big cliffhanger that will make me happy that I only have to wait a few days to see resolved. I see that the CW is banishing the show to the dreaded Friday night time slot, so I am guessing this will be the final season. It’s been a good run, and I will probably follow the show to the end now that I’m this far in.
- So You Think You Can Dance – After several seasons of faithfully blogging about my favorite reality competition, I simply couldn’t keep up this summer. I managed one measly post, and then had trouble even tuning in every week. Even though my interest has waned from what it once was, I still think this is a great show. While this season’s contestants didn’t wow me like some in the past (Pasha! Jakob! Katee!), I was especially impressed by the choreographers’ creativity. Tabitha and Napoleon outdid themselves, and Sonya Tayeh, Travis Wall, and others did some equally stellar work. It made me wish that the producers would develop a spin-off along the lines of “So You Think You Can Choreograph.” They could even have SYTYCD all-stars perform the routines. How fun would that be? As for this season, the all-star gimmick kind of fell flat, especially since so many of the girls were ousted early on, leaving the all-star guys without much chance to perform. Still, it was very nice to see some old favorites like Pasha and Twitch, be reminded how good others were (Mark, Katherine), and be introduced to a fantastic season two contestant (Allison). The question of who would be sent home each week was highly predictable, but I think Kent and Lauren were the deserving top two, and that Lauren completely deserved to win. It was nice that things went the way they should for once on a reality show! (I still think that Crystal was robbed last season on American Idol, and am still bitter about Jakob not winning on last season of SYTYCD…)
- Movies – I haven’t watched a ton of movies this summer, but here’s a short list of the ones I did see
- Inception – The payoff of this movie was so worth sitting through 2 1/2 hours and risking being uncomfortable as I neared the end of my pregnancy. The special effects, the sound, the intricate plot, the all-star cast, etc. This is one of those rare films that I would love to see again in the theater – it’s that impressive and entertaining. My parents would disagree. They had trouble accepting the “shared dreaming” aspect of the plot that held the movie together. This surprised me, since I didn’t think twice about it. Christopher Nolan’s movies do seem to appeal more to the under 40 crowd than to our parents.
- Iron Man 2 – While this movie had some glaring plot holes or unclear developments, it gave me another chance to see one of my favorite actors on the big screen. I’m talking, of course, about Robert Downey, Jr. He was looking good in that iron man suit! I was highly entertained by the whole movie, but could have done without the confusing/campy Scarlett Johansson and Samuel L. Jackson subplot. Say what? I felt like they jumped into the movie from a bad X-Men imitation.
- Whip It – I’d been wanting to see this movie ever since I first saw the trailers, and it’s just about what I expected: a chick flick with attitude. I thought Drew Barrymore did a great job in her directorial debut, and the roller derby girls were well cast.
- Dr. Horrible’s Singalong Blog – This was my second time to view this fun Joss Whedon creation, and it was just as entertaining this time. I’m still surprised by the bittersweet ending, but I shouldn’t be, knowing Whedon’s history with shows like Angel and Buffy – well, really any show he’s ever made has had a bittersweet finale. The songs are catchy, the lyrics clever, and the cast entertaining. Neil Patrick Harris can do no wrong!
- Black Pearl Sings – This was a local production starring Liz Mikel, of Friday Night Lights fame. It was an excellent two-person show set during the Great Depression, featuring acapella folk songs and spirituals. I don’t go to many plays, but my positive experience with this one makes me want to keep my eyes open for more good ones.
- Wicked – I finally saw this Broadway production that everyone raves about. I was skeptical, but was quickly won over by the charming cast, songs, set design, and story. Glinda and Elphaba were the real stars, as one would guess. The actresses who portrayed them had tremendous voices and good chemistry as the unlikely friends. My only complaint is that this musical lacks a grand finale. The first act blows you away before intermission, with the moving “Defying Gravity” scene, but the show ends with one tiny song, and some dialogue to wrap up loose ends. I was looking for something more awe inspiring. Oh well.
So there’s the list of tv, movies, and plays that have entertained me this summer. What were you watching?