Ken Tucker's TV Prime-Time TV commentary

Tag: Dramas (41-50 of 564)

'Elementary' tonight: How does this Sherlock compare to other Sherlocks?

Tonight, Elemetary returns with its second episode, and with it, a fresh challenge. Its premiere was a ratings hit, and a solid pilot. Now, it has to prove it can come up with another plot as twisty as its first, and do some work in further delineating the modern Sherlock Holmes played by Jonny Lee Miller. READ FULL STORY

'Homeland' season premiere review: Brody and Carrie could not put 'this crazy stuff' behind them

One week since winning what seemed like every Emmy that Modern Family didn’t, Homeland began its second season on Sunday night with Claire Danes’ Carrie Mathison having, in her sister’s words, “finally gotten to a good place.” Which is spy-story code for, “soon to arrive in a bad place.”

Carrie — at the end of last season a disgraced CIA operations officer so emotionally damaged she was going One Flew Over the Cukoo’s Nest with electroconvulsive therapy — was shown living with her parents, employed in a teaching job, and making vegetable lasagna from veggies she herself has picked from the family garden. She seemed as close as anyone as intense and intelligent and vegetarian as Carrie can be to being happy. READ FULL STORY

'Made in Jersey' premiere review: Made with energy and Jersey soulfulness

You can be sure that a character made a Real Housewives of New Jersey joke during the premiere of Made in Jersey on Friday night. This was practically required, to prove that Made in Jersey‘s producers are aware of the reality-TV competition, and of its edited ethnic stereotypes. But rather than looking a though it’s pandering or surrendering to the Housewives franchise, Made in Jersey did something good — it created characters that humanize a certain kind of lower-middle-class Jersey citizen rather than monster-size her or him, and did its best to suggest that even not-great scripted television frequently proves superior to the pinnacle of “reality,” at least as it’s packaged on Bravo. READ FULL STORY

'Elementary' premiere review: This Sherlock looks like a sure hit, but is it good Holmes?

It’s a great time to be a Sherlock Holmes fan. First we got Benedict Cumberbatch in the dizzying modernizations of classic Holmes tales airing on PBS. Now comes Elementary, starring another Brit, Jonny Lee Miller, in a clever, if occasionally absurd, version of the Holmes ethos. READ FULL STORY

'Last Resort' premiere review: Did it sink or swim for you?

Tense and well-acted by stars Andre Braugher and Scott Speedman, Last Resort is one of the most promising new shows of the fall season, as well as being one that carries a big risk of dropping in quality: It’s an absorbing curiosity.

The pilot that aired on Thursday night told a complex tale with swift efficiency. Braugher and Speedman head up a Navy ballistic missle submarine, the USS Colorado. As Captain Marcus Chaplin and XO Lt. Commander Sam Kendal, respectively, the ship receives an order to launch a missle at Pakistan. Something’s fishy about this drastic directive, however, and when Chaplin balks at firing, he’s relieved of command and his second in command (the “XO”) is put in charge. READ FULL STORY

'Hawaii Five-0' season premiere tonight: Worth watching for its crazy energy

Just putting this on your radar in case it’s not already: It’s worth checking out tonight’s season premiere of Hawaii Five-0. It’s got a crazy energy to its pacing, it’s got Christine Lahti as Alex O’Loughlin’s mother, and it’s got a day-time street shoot-out that marshals more ammunition than any such scene this side of Michael Mann’s Heat. READ FULL STORY

'Boardwalk Empire' review: The tedium of shock

Boardwalk Empire, with its handsomely burnished fixtures and darkly lit rooms, has always traded on the fiction-based-on-research that its dandy-fied bootleggers are capable of wanton acts of violence to keep the employees and customers in line. But Sunday night’s season-three premiere upped the ante in this area by introducing Bobby Cannavale as Gyp Rosetti, and I don’t care how much proof the producers muster that a guy like Gyp could be/would be/was this psychotic, I’m not buying the character — and this aspect of the series — as being much more than an example of a cable show using its freedom to portray some of its acts of violence as quick dramatic shorthand for daring, or seriousness of intent. READ FULL STORY

NBC's new fall season: Sitcoms and 'Parenthood'

The new TV season is in full swing on NBC, with sitcoms such as Go On and The New Normal having aired their second episodes, and the season premiere of one of my favorite dramas, Parenthood, aired earlier this week. READ FULL STORY

'Sons of Anarchy' season premiere review: Was this the fall TV season's most intense season premiere?

Although the year isn’t over, I think we can agree that the Most Original Character Introduction Award of 2012 will have to go to Jimmy Smits in the Tuesday night season premiere of Sons of Anarchy.

That would now serve as your SPOILER ALERT. READ FULL STORY

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