80s Time Traps, McCartney & Gaga, and Weapon-Wielding Monarchs: April = AWESOME

Sweet and I aren’t big TV watchers. For the longest time, we didn’t even have cable (only signing up for the “3 months free” promotions, and promptly cancelling at the end of each trial, resulting in a strangely large collection of remote controls, and much to the chagrin of the installation guy). We watch our favourites online, mostly, or on DVD box set – sometimes there’s nothing better on a dreary Saturday than curling up with back to back episodes of Star Trek and a cup of tea! But this month, we had no choice but to succumb. Three of the best programmes on TV are all starting new seasons, and I’m BEYOND excited.

#1: Doctor Who

It’s no secret I’m a huge Whovian and, after a 2-year hiatus and much anticipation for the latest incarnation of the Doctor, it FINALLY returned to our screens last week.  For those of you who’ve never seen it, Doctor Who started back in the 1960s in black and white, and rather low budget, and has continued to this day, remaining the longest running science fiction show in the WORLD. It follows the story of the Doctor, the last of his race, travelling through space and time with various companions, battling evil and saving the Earth. He has the ability to regenerate into a new body near death – and the current series marks the eleventh actor to play the role. I hope it goes on forever!! Generations have grown up “hiding behind the sofa“, and this series’ new writer definitely has a taste for the darker stories – last season had episodes which literally made me afraid to turn off the lights, and this week showed one of the most chilling, and best episodes I’ve ever seen. Humanity fleeing to space after a major catastrophe on the Starship UK, led by a gun-wielding, cape-donning Queen Elizabeth X, going undercover to find out what her government is up to while voters are given the option to “protest” or “forget” – and the Doctor left with a choice between killing the last of a race or saving humanity – this episode was to DIE for.  And next week? Winston Churchill building an army of “English Daleks” to win the war? COUNT ME IN.

#2: Ashes to Ashes

This may VERY well be the new highlight of my week. It’s in its final season and was a spinoff of the amazing Life on Mars (the UK version – please, America, never try and remake anything again…), which, if you didn’t catch, was a sci-fi police drama (I know, brilliant), telling the story of a present-day police officer who is hit by a car, and wakes from consciousness in 1973.  We don’t know if he’s gone back in time, in a coma in the present, or if anything is real – the story is full of wonderfully creepy “signs” he might be in a coma, like hearing present-day voices on the radio, or ’70s television characters stepping out of the TV into his apartment and talking to him about his “real” life…

Ashes to Ashes followed the incredible finale, telling the story of a female police officer (played by Keeley Hawes, of MI-5 and Death at a Funeral fame) who is shot, and inexplicably regains consciousness in 1981.  When she wakes up, she is shocked to meet the head of the same police department she’s read about (in researching what happened in Life on Mars).  Throughout the series, we don’t know whether she is dead or alive in the present day. Gene Hunt, the DCI, is one of the most brilliantly written characters I’ve ever seen. He’s hilariously politically incorrect (“This case is going as fast as a bunch of spastics in a magnet factory“), unnecessarily brutal, and has lines that’ll have you splitting your sides one minute (“I”m not a religious man, Mr Warren – but isn’t there something in the Bible that says, thou shalt not suck off rent boys?”), and full of hope and absolute fear the next. The season 2 finale remains hands-down the best finale of any TV show I have ever seen in my life, and this series is proving to be simultaneously full of wit and spine-tingling chills, leaving me HANGING off the edge of my seat with a blanket half over my eyes.

#3: Glee

I’ll admit I was a bit of a new kid on the Glee block, but since starting the season in February (and subsequently buying both soundtracks, converting officemates on lunch breaks, and watching the whole thing through about three times since), I’m officially hooked. Another hilariously politically incorrect antagonist (“I empower my cheerleaders to be champions. Do they go to college? I don’t know. I don’t care. Should they learn Spanish? Sure, if they wanna become dishwashers and gardeners”), an ongoing theme of  losers and nerds coming out on top, half the cast of Heroes, and amazing numbers – this one has it all.

Do watch the videos! What’s keeping you glued to your seats these days??

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51 comments

  1. I have a few shows I watch, especially this time of year. We are huge Lost and American Idol fans. During the summer, we watch a show called Big Brother…I always hate to admit that because it’s kind of cheesy, but we get sucked in every time. Other than those I pretty much don’t watch TV unless Chad has it on. We were watching Amazing Race and Survivor this season because some of our favorites were on but they’re off now! Oh, I have been recording The Marriage Ref because it looked interesting. It’s silly but it cracks me up at the same time. Some of the couples have the funniest arguments! I haven’t jumped on the Glee bandwagon yet…maybe this summer I’ll see if I can get caught up.

    1. I have never seen Big Brother but I know it’s big in the UK too – I do have a bit of a guilty pleasure in stuff like Idol too – I don’t watch the American one any more, but X Factor is the same sort of thing. It’s far too compelling! You HAVE to jump on the Glee bandwagon!! 🙂

  2. Dr. Who is brilliant!!!! we watched the ep on saturday too & i agree with you its one of the best yet. steven moffatt’s eps were always the best ones & next weeks looks sooooooo good. haven’t seen this season of ashes, i didn’t know it was on yet – must catch up, the last season was brilliant!!! haven’t watched glee yet, i’m never in when it’s on but it starts on the 19th here so maybe i’ll watch this time around. right now all i have time for is eastenders and neighbours LOL

  3. I have never watched any of these. I really wanted to get into Glee but I didn’t watch it from the beginning and I hate starting a show in the middle of a season or series (I don’t have time to have a Saturday movie day although I sooo wish I did). The only shows I really can get into are silly ridiculous soap opera types like Gossip Girl, One Tree Hill, Vampire Diaries, etc. But within this final season of Lost my boyfriend has gotten me to watch that to and while spending close the last… six years thinking the show was stupid and a waste of time I have learned to love it. It is AWESOME! 😀 I think I may take a Glee Day after finals have ended and hopefully get into it!!!

    Hope you had a great weekend! 🙂
    Ashley

    1. A Glee day sounds like just about the best kind of day 🙂 You know what, I never got into Lost – I think I had a friend trying to get me into it in the beginning and I gave a couple of episodes a go, and never really got drawn in. I’ve heard it’s all sorts of amazing though so I may have to try again – so often shows’ first seasons aren’t that compelling and then they end up being incredible. Like Ashes to Ashes – SO glad I stuck with it!!

      Hope you had a great weekend too 🙂

  4. Doctor Who sounds fantastic, as does Ashes to Ashes.

    I am glued to my seat for Lost and The Amazing Race, and I can’t wait for Burn Notice to come back in June.

    1. They’re both amazing… what’s Burn Notice? I haven’t heard of that one. My only experience with the Amazing Race was at work – on the way to our retreat last year we each teamed up in cars and had to go all over the city finding envelopes and doing challenges on our own “Amazing Race” to the retreat, it was SO much fun!

      1. Oh! Burn Notice is AWESOME!! It’s a US show about a “burned” spy. It’s got brilliant writing and lots of explosions. Oh, and Bruce Campbell.

  5. I *LOVE* Doctor Who – I kinda think I am a Whovian too but I’m not so sure lol. Loving the New Doctor think he’s fab not so sure on Amy Pond but she’s growing on me lol.

    Ashes to Ashes – I don’t really like it but then again I didn’t like Life on Mars either

    Glee – *LOVE* I watched like 5 episodes in a row at my friends house a few weeks ago and have both albums on my iPod. I also decided that if my Upper School had had a Glee Club that would have been me in there lol.

    1. I haven’t seen or heard of Castle OR Bones – I think I have a bit of digging to do!! I wished my high school had had a Glee club too – I would’ve been there in a heartbeat! Amy Pond is taking a bit longer to grow on me – I think it’s her odd accent that’s throwing me off. It’s not quite Scottish, not quite English, not quite American… but she’s very pretty. The Doctor though, I am already in love with! 🙂

  6. I had not even heard of the first two of these shows (Husby and I don’t even have a tele hookup at all but we watch online or at the gym). The second show sounds so interesting, I think I’ll start watching. You did such a good job of describing them too.

    I’m a newbie to Glee as well but I think it is amazing! Brilliantly funny. I find myself laughing out loud (very loud) at times.

    I am obsessed with the show Being Erica, I even wrote a post that talked about it. The second season just ended but it’s on Hulu. I’m actually quite sad that the season ended, how long will I have to wait for it to start up? NOOOO!!

  7. I just started watching Doctor Who last week (well, when season 5 started). I haven’t seen any of the old episodes but I thought that since it’s a new actor anyway, I shouldn’t be too confused.
    It’s pretty good and oh my gosh where those mask guys creepy. Just really creepy. Anyway, it looks pretty interesting, I’ll keep watching.

    1. Okay you just made my day. LOL! Those mask guys were ridiculously scary!! There’s just something about painted-on smiles… *shudder* I’m SO excited to have a blog friend to talk Dr. Who with!!

  8. Glee has changed my life for the better.
    I comPLETELY forgot it’s starting up again tomorrow, and I AM TICKLED pink about it.

    Have you ever considered watching LOST? It is currently in it’s final season and it is INTENSE. I lost track of it around season 4, so I started from the beginning (you really can’t miss an episode) and I’m hoping to be finished watching the current season in time to watch the final episode live. I’ve put a LOT of thought into this. HAHA. Lost on an Island. Weird experiments. Time Travel. Flashbacks. Intersecting lives – everything I dream of in a TV show. Plus, Josh Holloway is divine

    ALSO – TrueBlood. The picture I have posted on my blog right now? He’s from TrueBlood. I’ve only watched the 1st season (I can’t fit any more TV into my life right now!) but I’ve read the entire book series by Charlaine Harris. They’re all about vampires becoming mainstream citizens since the discovery of TrueBlood – a synthetic blood that serves as a nutritional replacement for vampires. IT IS AWESOME. Read the books.

    1. I’m SO excited!! I think they do a Beatles song in the very first episode too…. we’re at a concert tomorrow so we’re going to have to PVR it. And then stay up REALLY late and watch it lol.

      I’ve been told on many occasions I really need to get into Lost!! I tried it once but I never got hooked – I should know better though because the first season of Ashes to Ashes wasn’t the most compelling and it’s kind of the best show in the world by S2 🙂

      Ahhhhh TrueBlood – I heard about it… and dismissed it as along the Twilight lines. Is it better?? I do love me some good sci fi and fantasy 🙂

      1. TrueBlood is a million times better than Twilight. The only real comparison is that they are vampires. The main character (Sookie) isn’t needy like Bella…omg, I should stop now. My nerd is showing.

  9. I’m so excited about the return of Glee and Dr. Who this week!! I’m a newbie to the Doctor, but I was hooked fast.

    I consider myself to watch WAAAY too much television, unfortunately, but there are so many shows I love. Thank goodness for DVR. Castle, Big Bang Theory, Bones, Parenthood, and Desperate Housewives are the ones I’m loving right now

    I can’t wait for Burn Notice, White Collar, and Caprica to start back up this summer.

  10. I’ve never watched those shows! But your reviews definitely made me curious to try…especially Dr. Who. I’m actually totally intrigued that there’s a series that’s been on for such a long time!! To be honest I can’t even wrap my head around it. Like…who decided to keep it going so long? Lol I am such a dork, but I am all kinds of curious now.

    I must admit my tv show addictions are much less sci-fi and way more drama. The drama is addicting for me!! Maybe it gives me that taste & excitement of drama without actually having any?? Hmmmm, lol. Either way, my number one fave right now is Gossip Girl. I’m hopelessly addicted to this show. 😀 And closely following are LOST (ok…this one is a bit more substance, yes,) and Weeds. I also adore The Office (BOTH UK and US versions) and Flight of the Conchords. I reallllllly love tv…hahaha…Probably should spend less time on my arse though. 😉

    1. DO try Doctor Who!! Honestly it’s really not all that sci-fi. It’s more of an ongoing fairytale for grownups 🙂 I love that it’s kept going so long. It took a bit of a break from the 90s-2000s but it got “revived” in 2006 and it’s just been getting more and more amazing ever since 🙂

      I’ve never seen Gossip Girl! I see all the trailers though and it seems like I’ve missed way too much to jump on! And after today’s discussion, I think it’s firmly established that I am going to give Lost another go 🙂

      1. Yes, LOST is incredible!! It’s getting soooo intense, I would say to pick it up again and stick through all the slow parts…it is really paying off right now!

        And Gossip Girl is totally cheesy in a way…but it’s soooo good. It’s one of those shows that is just a total fantasy–life through the eyes of snotty rich kids (who, deep down, have a heart of gold! Haha.) It’s more of a guilty pleasure than anything else, that’s for sure.

  11. Yay!! We can chat Who!! 🙂 I’m going to have to look into Bones because you’re the third person this week to mention it, and I know NOTHING about it – and my massage therapist is trying to sell me on Caprica (I’ve never seen any BG (!)). Spending an hour talking about sci-fi beats the excruciating pain HANDS DOWN 🙂

  12. OH!! And I’m obsessed with True Blood, too, though I’m waiting for Season 2 to come out of DVD so I can watch it! It’s awesome 😀

  13. GLEE! I love that show and I cannot WAIT for tomorrow…it’s going to be awesome. I tried to get off the bandwagon (because I hate being cool, I guess) but I just couldn’t help myself! It’s such a good show with great music and awesome plotlines.

  14. I’ve never heard of Dr. Who or Ashes to Ashes. In my defense I’m not a huge fan of sci fi. (Sorry.) I watched the first couple episodes of Glee – loved the musical aspect but never enjoyed the storyline(s).

    My must watch shows are Criminal Minds (a super sexy man and a spunky computer nerd are among the main characters, I’m sold on that alone), Biggest Loser (even if I tend to have junk food in hand when watching), The Ultimate Fighter (mainly because Jason’s IRL friend Nick Ring is a contestant with the potential to win it all) and LA Ink (which is starting to go downhill in the past couple seasons so I’m fast forwarding through a lot of the drama).

    1. Ahhh! Did you get to episode 4? GREAT one… the storylines get better (I love that they’re REAL storylines too not like soap opera ones) and the music is just to die for. Ultimate Fighter!! That’s the one that was on when we were skyping yes? 🙂

  15. I watch alot of tv, like a RIDICULOUS amount of tv, but its never ON the tv. 🙂 Right now I’m loving Breaking Bad, Grey’s Anatomy and the L Word (Grey’s really is the only new one, I’m still catching up on old seasons of shows I’ve only just discovered!)

    1. I never watch stuff actually ON the TV – it’s always online or PVR’d! But I think I may have to change all that and stay in on Tuesday nights now Glee is back 🙂

      I never watched Grey’s Anatomy but I’ve heard lots of good things!

  16. I actually have not seen any of these shows! I have never been big on Science Fiction but maybe I should give it a shot. Everyone raves about Glee so I might try to get the first season on Netflix once it’s available!!

  17. oh honey!

    you’ve been doing nothing but awesome things lately. putting yourself out there is totally terrifying, but look at all the support you’ve received. and if it ends up sounding like william hung? at least people will respect you for the efforts you made, and the courage it took to actually put yourself out there like that.

    i hope you do it!

    xo
    – e

  18. Ack! I cannot WAIT for Glee! Except I have to wait…until tomorrow. Because we don’t have TV, so I’ll be watching it on Hulu the MINUTE it’s posted. 🙂

    1. Ahhh! We’re at a concert tonight so we’re taping it – I probably SHOULD wait til tomorrow to watch it for fear of being a total zombie tomorrow, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to resist lol. We’ll debrief tomorrow!! 🙂

  19. Glee makes me happy! Oh, so happy. I was like a little kid on Christmas Eve when it came on last night 🙂 Can’t wait to see what they do with this season.

    And anything McCartney & Gaga is good in my book, though probably not together because some things are classic (like McCartney) and shouldn’t be mixed with things like Gaga. At least in my opinion.

  20. I’m new to Dr. Who but have enjoyed the few episodes I’ve watched. BBC America puts out some really high quality stuff, but I think USAmericans just don’t appreciate it.

    Have you ever seen Garth Marenghi’s Dark Place?

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