FTW vs. WTF: The TV Week in Review (August 25)

By TV.com Staff

Aug 25, 2013

Oh gosh, this is the last week of August, guys! Could it actually be time to get serious? September is looming, which means summer is almost over, and that means we have to buy new Trapper Keepers and erasers and pencil boxes! Not for school, no no no, but for our honors course on the new fall season, where homework is making .GIFs of The Vampire Diaries, recess means catching up on whatever's on our DVRs, and final exams are finale exams and they happen in late May. But first we have some pass/fail report cards to fill out as we look at the best and worst of the week in television.




New Girl's turn on The Writers' Room

Sundance Channel and Entertainment Weekly's regular writers' powwow continues to delight, and this week's New Girl panel—featuring creator Liz Meriwether, Nick Miller himself (Jake Johnson), and executive producers Brett Baer and Dave Finkel—was truly entertaining. Naturally the full episode's not online, but if you can track it down via On Demand or more, uh, nefarious means, it's at least worth a look for the improvised story-breaking of an episode called "Mouth Party," which we now totally want to see. Oh, and if you weren't a fan of the period humor in Season 2's "Menzies," check out this (unembeddable) clip; sounds like it could've been wayyyyy worse. 



Teen Wolf nails another finale


Serialized dramas live or die by their finales. Teen Wolf's have been excellent since the beginning, and the Season 3A capper didn't disappoint. Neatly tying together one of the show's most elaborate and ambitious plots to date (a sort of supernatural Mexican standoff between three different factions), it also took the time to delve into artful philosophical concepts, and to provide some truly rich emotional payoffs. Feeling very much like a season-ending conclusion rather than mid-season cliffhanger, this finale respected our need for closure and made us even more excited to see what the next batch of episodes will bring us. New monsters, new heartache, even more labyrinthine storytelling— bring it on.



Michael Westen stabs Garret Dillahunt to death

Well, actually it was "Simon Escher," the crazy man who was instrumental in framing Westen so many Burns ago. The heart-piercing followed Mikey's realization that the CIA doesn't care what sort of psychopaths they have to consort with in order to get the job done. Then, as if that wasn't enough to put him on bad terms with the government organization, he went on to admit to Brotherman James the real reason he's been hanging around. For a show that relies pretty heavy on a procedural episode structure, these last installments are actually keeping us guessing, which is a good place to be.



The Bridge's dubstep bath salts guy!

FX's bordertown police drama isn't shy. Proof? Look at this weirdo hammering out some beats and freaking in the buff with a sock on his dong. Just one of many odd little details this kooky show delivers on a weekly basis.



True Blood's Eric Northman showed us his wiener

The Season 6 finale was like two episodes in one, and while we're a little on the fence about the mid-episode six-month time jump and Sam Merlotte becoming the freaking mayor of Bon Temps, Alexander Skarsgard went full-frontal. That goes a long way. 



The Soup celebrates 500 episodes... live!


Joel McHale's weekly clip show marked a major milestone with a pair of live episodes that were mostly like any other episode of the series, but with a little extra pizazz. BJ Novak, Lou Diamond Phillips, and Adam Corolla all dropped by, and the show scored its largest audience of the year. So meaty!!



Breaking Belize!

Breaking Bad coined a new euphemism for murder, "Send him on a trip to Belize," and the Belize Tourism Board had a field day, even offering several cast members free trips to the country. And then one Reddit user whipped up that beautiful postcard you see above.






TLC's The Man with the 132-lb Scrotum


But what is this show even about and who is the main character?



Maxine just *appeared* on Under the Dome, and she's mixing her metaphors

We're not sure why Natalie Zea decided to squat in some poor schmoe's house for eight episodes while two of her employees ran around like chickens with their heads cut off, but we do know she's terrible at crafting a properly threatening and consistent metaphor: 

Maxine: “You have quite a few secrets buried in your past, Barbie. I would hate for those secrets to get dug up for everyone to see.”

Barbie: “Oh, please, please, dig them up.”

Maxine: “Careful what you wish for, Jimmy, because while I’m digging, I might accidentally reveal a few of the pies you got your fingers stuck in around town.”

She couldn't've just stuck with the buried secrets? Suddenly there are baked goods involved?! Maybe the pies are buried? Pirate Pastries! Or maybe another one of her operations—aside from collecting gambling debts, selling drugs, and setting up fight clubs—is an All-In-One Hole-Digging and Dessert Shop? Come to think of it, that might actually do well in Chester's Mill...



A&E's Modern Dads

It's great that men can be at the forefront of a reality show, and that A&E's making an effort to portray a group of "characters" who aren't constantly fighting, drinking, or f*cking, but this show about four stay-at-home dads is a horrible watch. In addition to being mostly staged, the show dismisses its stars' wives as props, and the guys themselves ham it up in front of the cameras with the type of personalities that prove they shouldn't ever breed again.



The recent comparisons between Breaking Bad and Lost

Yes, Breaking Bad had numbers and it put them on a lottery ticket. Okay, Lost had numbers and it put them on a lottery ticket, too. Yes, there was an underground meth lab on Breaking Bad, and yes, there was an underground hatch on Lost. Yes, "Walt" and flashforwards. But please, stop trying to make connections where they don't belong. Let Breaking Bad be Breaking Bad, and let Lost be Lost. Are we supposed to compare ABC's upcoming lottery drama Lucky 7 to Lost, too? (.GIF from ibtimes.com)



R.I.P. Elmore Leonard

One of America's greatest contemporary authors passed away this week, and he'll be greatly missed. In addition to a rich portfolio of novels and short stories, Leonard wrote the ditty that Justified is based on and consulted on the show frequently. He also penned the source material for several influential movies, including Get Shorty, Out of Sight, and Jackie Brown.


What's on YOUR list of TV loves and hates this week?

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  • 2wksnotice Aug 28, 2013

    OK . . . maybe I'm dumb, but I thought the Soup was always live to tape. I just assumed since they didn't edit out places where Joel stumbled over words or lost his composure and laughed.

  • 377221 Aug 27, 2013

    Under the Dome writers, it's not too late to turn things around! The ball is in your court, so grab the bull by the horns. If you strike while the iron is hot you can kill two birds with one stone, but remember: three strikes and you're out.

  • danharr Aug 27, 2013

    Yeah Maxine is hot she gets to mix all the metaphors she wants too...

  • J_Pip Aug 27, 2013

    Ok just watched Suits... I give it a
    SUPER FTW!!!!!!

  • J_Pip Aug 26, 2013

    FTW: Pirate Pastries
    WTF: My DVR continues to fill up

  • Isobel Aug 26, 2013

    Tv show about modern Dads thats actually good? House Husbands (Aus) it's a drama not a reality or comedy. Not wasting my time on 'Modern Dads' I think I'll just wait for HH to come back.

  • Savvytvfan91 Aug 26, 2013

    FTW Teen Wolf!!!!!!!! That was an awesome finale, that whole first scene with the main three Scott, Allison and almost everyones fave Stiles, was just amazing!!!!!

  • IndianaMom Aug 26, 2013

    The big thing for me this week was the promo for SVU's season premier. Can't wait!

  • Madelynn1984 Aug 26, 2013

    I thought that it had ended? I stopped watching when I hear that Stabler wasn't coming back. Mistake?

  • IndianaMom Aug 27, 2013

    The new cast members and showrunner have invigorated the show. I think it's better than it's been in years. And Danny Pino is super hot.

  • shae_SA Aug 26, 2013

    WTF - I miss Orphan Black

  • Anonymous_A Aug 26, 2013

    FTW - Teen WolfWTF - Having to wait until January for new eps of Teen Wolf.

  • buildam2005 Aug 26, 2013

    Better than the August to May wasteland that was last year's hiatus.

  • Anonymous_A Aug 26, 2013

    True. We still have to wait though.

  • ReeferMadness Aug 26, 2013

    Not too bad.

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