FTW vs. WTF: The TV Week in Review (November 4)

Hopefully this difficult week only put a damper on your shoes instead of drowning your spirits, and Hurricane Sandy left you mostly untouched. But if you were busy bailing buckets of water out of your bathroom, we're really, truly sorry. And at the very least, we have you covered on the TV you may have missed! Here are our favorite (and not-so-favorite) moments from the week that was.


FTW



Supernatural's "Vampirates"


Between those and the "Jefferson Starships" of Season 6, Dean should just be allowed to name everything from now on.



Google's Bob Ross "Google Doodle"


The legendary PBS painter of happy trees was honored by the search giant on Monday, which would have been the artist's 70th birthday.



Hurricane Sandy reporters in slickers and knee-deep water


Say what you will about the ol' "Al Roker in the rain" routine, but there was pretty solid domestic hurricane coverage by everyone as the Northeast got pounded by the superstorm, so congratulations to all the news outlets. And we'll never tire of watching CNN reporters hold on to their hoods and squint as Mother Nature has her way with them. However, if we'd relied soley on American media for coverage of the hurricane, we wouldn't even know that Sandy stopped in the Caribbean first and devastated Haiti, Jamaica, and Cuba, too.



Sister Jude tumbles off the wagon on American Horror Story


Jessica Lange's character dipped into the communal wine, introduced a movie to a bunch of howling inmates, and went searching for "that damn Mexican" in one of the series' funniest scenes to date. All it was missing was Jude caning Pepper.



Around the Horn's insane Halloween episode


Pardon the Interruption's little brother added in-character sports commentary to its usual mix of screaming, and the showdown between Tim Cowlishaw as the ghost of former Raiders owner Al Davis and Israel Gutierrez as President Obama became an instant gem that should be run on ESPN Classic forever.



Claire Danes and Damian Lewis, your Emmys are waiting for you


After the incredible interrogation scene in last Sunday's episode of Homeland, both actors totally deserve to win again.



Don't Trust the B----'s Halloween-themed romantic comedy


Things got real meta, real fast when Chloe's annual Halloween tradition—ruining somebody's life—was thrown back in her face by faux-beau Benjamin, who not only turned out to be Australian but got her arrested by the TSA by planting a switchblade in her purse. Bonus points for June's refusal to accept her status as a supporting character and James van der Beek's Halloween "Positivity" Party.



Ben and Kate's surprisingly heartfelt rejection of princess culture


After BJ (who is the best) first protested that Kate's aversion to allowing her daughter to dress up as a princess was an overreaction, she later encountered some grown-up girls who'd clearly continued down the princess road directly into slut-town. The scene where BJ took it upon herself to track down Kate's daughter and read to her a bedtime story with a female scientist for a hero was a short and quick reminder of what we've come to love about this show.



The Mindy Project's Mindy dressed up as Diane from Cheers


Sexy AND funny!



Eliza Coupe, comedy genius


The Happy Endings actress continues to kill it. OBVIOUSLY Jane never leaves the house without her ideal salary (plus a counter offer) written on a folded-up piece of paper. Obviously.



The Vampire Diaries' Claire Holt steals the show


Criminally billed as a "guest star," Claire Holt's performance as Rebekah has been a series highlight ever since she first appeared as Klaus's millenium-old little sister. Her whiplash-inducing shifts from bitchy to vulnerable have not only made for great TV, they've provided a poignant thesis statement for the show: No matter how old or powerful you are, sometimes you just want to be a teen. This week's episode of TVD may not have been perfect, but it was centered on a top-notch performance from Holt, so we are not complaining.



WTF



Adam Levine somehow lived through three episodes of American Horror Story


The man lost an arm, took a few pointy objects violently to the chest, and then proceeded to be dragged around the abandoned Briarcliff hospital by his lady friend and the homicidal monster/crazy person (people?) trying to kill them. We'd assumed Levine's much-touted acting debut would be more interesting than three episodes' worth of lying on the floor covered in stage blood and groaning. If he somehow survives the gunshot he sustained this week, we'll know there's something seriously wrong with Bloody Face's (and his copycats') methods.



Revolution's pre-title fake-out


You know that big scene in dramas before the title screen rolls that's supposed to get you super amped for the rest of the episode? This week, Revolution kicked things off with a gun held to Miles head, let the opening credits roll, and then came back after commercials with the gunman saying, "Haha, you should have seen the look on your face!" If this show got any lazier, it would be asleep.



Plot points hinged around male violence against women (New Girl, American Horror Story)


SORRY FOR BEING A BUMMER. But just because something is narratively justified doesn't mean it's fun to watch. Nick accidentally punching Jess in the face was meant to be, um, comedic? But we found it straight-up troubling. And poor Shelley on American Horror Story! We know that show's supposed to be filled with horrifying moments, but we'd probably prefer alien abductions to attempted rape. You know? Call us old-fashioned.



Hurricane Sandy


And not just because she f*cked up the TV schedule. Seriously, what a bitch.



We didn't get a chance to put together a "Who Won This Year's TV Halloween Costume Contest?" story this year


Shame on us, we totally dropped the ball. Please pick it up by naming your favorite Halloween episodes and character costumes in the comments!


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

Comments (68)
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i can predict one of the wtf's for next week. either in the column or in the comments section or both.



WTF: Obama got reelected.



seriously. people wouldn't have so much problems with his so called elegibility to be president if he was white. bunch of ****ing racist bigots.
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I just want to congratulate the site and its contributors for noticing and talking about the depiction of violence against women and how disturbing it is especially when it borders on torture porn (I am talking about AHS as I haven't seen NG yet). Clearly a courageous thing to do when comments show that a lot of us are still ready to defend our violent, rape culture.

As for the comments that claim that art is apolitical or that there are double standards against men I think that you are forgetting and/or pretending that we live in a social vacuum when actually we are not and violence against women is a serious human rights issue. Take in mind pls that I am not saying that violence against men is a non issue, but that violence against women and girls happens in such a degree and extend that has become an epidemic worldwide.

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FTW: Vampirates.

WTF: AHS cutting off feet.
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First of all, Nick punching the face of a "zombie", in a dark haunted house full of flashing lights, creepy loud sounds and things popping out from every corner, a place that he was terrified of to begin with and only braved to help save a friend from embarrassment and hurt, and that "zombie" happening to be Jess (the friend he went in there to find and help) was hilarious. Second of all, Jess got to punch him back in his face. This latest episode of New Girl was, to me, the funniest so far this season; that whole part being a key reason, with Nick screaming and huddling in absolute terror, so a FTW in my book.
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My favorite Halloween costume was probably Gene Belcher as Queen Latifah from her U.N.I.T.Y. phase.
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Are some of you seriously downing this coloumn for the comments on violence against females??

GROW UP WHINEY BABIES

All of you MEN complaining about it need to get a grip.
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My biggest WTF moment came from the promo for Revolution...I thought going in was that the bad guy was demanding Charlie's virginity or whatever and while I thought, well, how uncomfortable, I also thought...way to go way dark Revolution (and my first clue should have been we were having an Aaron flashback too, that seemed an odd pairing). And then, well, Charlie, just tell the guy who seems to have an army ready to go outside about your situation.



FTW was torn between Jane having her ideal salary in her pocket and Dean trying to encourage Benny to adopt the term vampirates.
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WTF: When Peter of Fringe puts an oberver's divice on his back !
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FTW: Someone other Louis Shaw Milano, Frank Walbeck, or Alec Smight directing last week's CSI: (in other words, someone outside of the production staff); Elaine Boosler pulling no punches with Republican strategist Ron Christie on So That Happened. The multiple crimes on the latest Elementary.



WTF: The overemphasis on Chris Christie praising President Obama's performance during Tropical Storm Sandy (maybe some of the time spent going into all the why's and wherefore's of public officials actually doing their jobs could have been better spent telling me about other places Sandy struck). Watson's unrelated story with an old colleague portenting Elementary slipping into A story/B story territory (at least Watson's date the week before served a purpose related to the main story). David Slack's comic book roots showing on Person of Interest (Lois Lane and Clark Kent, really? Outside of the two-part season premiere and Finch's relationship with Bear, POI seems a little lighter this season; maybe Finch should have stayed missing a little longer).
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thank you for reminding me not to bother to read this column next week, or at least the comments section. though if i ever want to see hundreds of WTF: obama was reelected comments i will know where to go.
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Yes. It is seriously troubling when a show treats all of the characters equally. Women totally deserve preferential treatment because...because why again?
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Last time I read this site. You obviously value women higher than men since you haven't made any remark about male vs male or female vs male violence in AHS but make a big fuss about a woman being the victim. And since I'm a second grade human being to you people I just won't return here. You should really take a long hard look at how you view men and women.
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And they say women are sensitive.
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Byeee, we'll really miss you!
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Happy Endings Jackson 5 Marionette. Really it is the only costume I saw on tv this year.
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Got to give Halloween costume props to what'shisname from Clueless on Suburgatory for shaving off so much hair for just one night to be Ken.



Also, thank you for reinforcing the fact that Revolution is crap. My Entertainment Weekly just put it on it's Must List!!! Awwww!
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FTW - The 'Return of the Redneck' to Walking Dead

WTF- Showing the clip of him handcuffed on the rooftop at the start thus removing any element of surprise. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
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Yuuup. Saw that and I was like 'welllll Merle's back!' but it might have been nice to be surprised. That's what end credits are for, people. Hiding surprise guest stars away in.
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Oh, I forgot:

FTW: FINALLY finding out when Community comes back. #sixseasonsandamovie
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WTF: Definitely Sandy and the devastation she left behind. The impact she had on TV sucked.

ultimate WTF***y goes to TVD. I overlook a lot of things on this show, and by overlook I mean shred them mercilessly while praising them too because TVD is as addicting as I'd imagine chocolate covered crack is. It's been known to trip on a few continuity stones and tumble into a plot hole or two but damn if it didn't reach a new low when they actively showed and acknowledge that some chick was about to get roofied and failed to have the most sanctimonious character, whom they spent the entire episode trying to convince us was one step away from Sainthood, FAIL to actually stop the girl from being drugged.
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FTW: Supernatural FINALLY making it on this list. It's about damn time.

We should totally make "vampirates" as a new official word in the dictionary...
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Claire Holt is the best thing about TVD. If they kill her off, they're insane. If they don't promote her, they're also insane.
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Supernatural's "Vampirates" = Awesome

Google's Bob Ross "Google Doodle" = Very Respectful

Sister Jude tumbles off the wagon on American Horror Story = Very Entertaining!

Don't Trust the B----'s Halloween-themed romantic comedy = Chloe tastes her own medicine!

The Vampire Diaries' Claire Holt steals the show = Rebekah was Awesome and had some real Growth!

Revolution's pre-title fake-out = Reminded me too much of Dale from "The Riches"

Plot points hinged around male violence against women (New Girl, American Horror Story) = It is what it is people, this stuff happens unfortunately, New Girl doesn't really fit into that category though, it was a somewhat harmless accident

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I was enjoying this, then I read "Plot points hinged around male violence against women." Yeah, I'm with everybody else on this, it's ridiculous, and like FringeFanatic said, I'm curious as to who exactly wrote that and I doubt it was a "we." Tim and MaryAnne are the only ones I'd rule out. I know that Louis Peitzman douche finds everything offensive but I'm not even sure if he writes here anymore. Price didn't speak too highly of AHS scene mentioned in his recap, but I don't think he would write that, besides more emphasis seems to be on the New Girl scene. There are lots of writers on this site, so who knows. Forgive me if I'm looking too far into it, just curious that's all.
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I think we'd all like to know whom exactly on the TV.com staff found the New Girl (completely accidental and actually quite hilarious) punch scene "straight-up troubling"?

I ask because MaryAnne (TV.com's reviewer for New Girl) had nary a word to say on the subject in her review of the episode. In fact, she thought Jess's retaliation punch (oh my god! Jess punched Nick?! How troubling!) was awesome. Which it was.

You guys have obviously been caught with being arbitrarily sanctimonious on a complete non-issue (at least in regards to New Girl).

Would you care to clarify your remarks?
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Word!
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I am a ladayy and I thought Jess getting punched in the face was hilarious! It was an accident, they're both good friends, and she punched him back later. Funny friend stuff! If it had been framed around a domestic violence situation it obviously would not have been funny, but maybe the next gender barrier to break is allowing women do funny physical humor too!

That said, AHS was a totally different story. I really really hate any plot line that hinges on rape. It can be well done, but most of the time is just feels exploitative. Sorry, not entertainment to me.
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I didn't have a problem with New Girls' scene. I'd punch Zombie Woody Allen, too.



I do have issues with AHS, though. I really enjoyed the first season. It was edgy AND it had a great story to tell. This season feels like pandering torture porn. I feel like they are just throwing as many awful things as they can at the screen just to keep people talking about how "crazy" it is.

It doesn't feel like there is really an depth to this season. I've already lost interest. This is just another Ryan Murphy show that tanked after the first season.



I was a little conflicted about the Ben and Kate stuff. I like teaching kids that they can be anything they want and that their gender doesn't have to dictate who they are or what they want to do with their lives. However, I don't see the correlation that being a princess for Halloween dictates your future endeavors. And I think it's pretty messed up to degrade Women for dressing sexy at Halloween(A.K.A. Slut Shaming). Dress however you want, as long as its what YOU want and not because you feel like you have to, or are supposed to.



Also, where is your snarky comment about Schmidt dressing "slutty"? A Man dresses in little clothing and it's no big deal. A Woman dresses in little clothing and she's a slut? Seems a bit sexist to me.

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FTW: Peter implanting himself with Observer tech! (my initial reaction was WTF, in the most stunned, mindblown sense of the word)
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Oh yes, 'The Origin Story' as a whole kicked ass.
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I love your double standards. It's okay to for guys to punch each other day in and day out on TV but apparently even an involuntary punch in the face of a girl on New Girl, which was hilarious because he technically punched zombie Woody Allen, is sooooooo not cool. The whole episode had me in stitches.



P.S. You forgot to mention Nick gets jumped by everyone right after it happens and gets completely whooped. Also, at the end of the episode Nick gets held down as Jess punches him back. The damn episode already solidifies the fact that you really shouldn't punch girls or anyone for that matter at all. So yeah, get over yourself and at least get it all right.
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Of course there are double standards. That's why there are wife-beater problems in the world and not husband-beater problems. Women in general are physically weaker than men and men are regarded as more or less equal among their own gender. So of course it's not ok when a man punches a woman.

That being said, I agree that scene in New Girl was hilarious and didn't bother me at all. It was a funny accident, that's it.
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I totally agree with both your points! In general, the power imbalance between the genders negates the whole 'waaahh double standards, what about men's rights!' arguments, but I thought New Girl was hilarious and I didn't have any problems with that scene.
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The Mindy Project is fantastic - funnier every week... esp with the addition of the new nurse and Mindy's obnoxious yuppy 'suitor'...



'Vampirates' is nearly as good as 'Trampire' Will Ferrell's funny (if misogynistic) new word
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WTF: The "heroes" in TVD letting a girl get roofied.

WTF: Inconsistency. Calling out an accidental punching and a rape, but not calling out another chemically assisted rape in a show that was mentioned in the FTW section.
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YES. Saf, dude, I heart you so much for that!
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Punching a girl is okay if it's Zooey Deschanel.
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Seriously dear TV.com staff, I've been a loyal visitor to this website for as long as I can remember, but sometimes you just feel like plain weird.



This remark about the New Girl and AHS scenes (punch/rape) was so off!

I don't even have to explain how the New Girl scene is so NOT aggressive. Somebody already went to the trouble of stating the obvious.

As for AHS, it's one of the most "in your face" shows in TV history. It's not about how much blood you put on screen, how many deaths and so on, it's about "disturbing".



Is a rape scene that's done with good acting disturbing? I am sure it is, and for some more than others.

Is it justifiable to have it? Are we SERIOUSLY gonna start questioning art?



Maybe for most of you TV shows are not "art" anymore because you've seen too much, and of course, inevitably, you've seen too much trash as well. But at the end of the day, film, and tv shows (that so closely relate to films nowadays production-wise and so on) are on their basis art.



Is the rape scene in AHS justified in being there? Yes. It's DEFINITELY not put there for the sake of disturbing, scaring, making people disgusted etc. Happening to a nymphomaniac girl is all the more important to show us elements of their characters.



And frankly, I find it so weird that you can't see the reasoning behind these two TV moments last week. Your complaint sounds so much like a republican's rant about all the crazy things they rant about most of the time. Or should I say, tea party fanatics.



If you have deep, inner issues with rape, fire, robots, broccoli and so on, you should start by addressing your own issues and then expressing publicly anything about them. If I am gonna judge something publicly and especially when I am doing it on a website with HUGE following, I HAVE to be professional on some degree. I don;'t know what your day job is, surely tv.com can't be it. Even if it is and let's say you fall in the category of....journalist (??) then your obligation to being more careful is bigger.



Have you Irreversible with Monica Belucci? The most infamous rape scene in movie history? It's very realistic. So many people objected to this scene. But I am gonna ask this, on a movie that's about a woman getting raped and how this event caused so much pain on so many different levels, is it really so hard to understand the necessity the creator feels to portray this significant event as realistic as possible?



How many times have we not criticised movies and tv shows about their lack of realism?



And finally, how hypoctritical is it to have a problem with "rape" and "a guy punching a girl" (again, IT WAS AN ACCIDENT!!!!!) and not have issues with so many more things shown on tv, about relationships, about adultery, about murder, and so on. Why is the rape scene any more "disturbing" and condemned than the scenes of torture on Homeland?



Anyway....the more a website grows, the more the contributors must grow with it. Keep up. Please.
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WTF is up with you FTW column? Clair Holt,??? Seriously??? She is kind of Good-ish...but WTF!?!?!
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FTW: FRINGE - best episode yet. Epicness x 10 is an understatement!!!!



WTF: it's going to end sooner. It shouldn't end at all yet :(
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FTW: Peter going all dexter on an Observer on Fringe (2) and the writers for the amazing character continuity and complexity! It gave me chills!
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FTW: Peter going all Dexter on an Observer on Fringe.
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agreed more or less. would add FTW childrens hospital episode which was brilliant this week!
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FTW:

Homeland

TVD

Jessica Lange

Louie C.K. on SNL



WTF:

Sandy
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I was OK with Nick punching Jess. I would've too, in that situation. And she punched him back, which was awesome.
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still Schimdt
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My favorite Halloween TV Costume of the year is Howard and Bernadet from TBBT when they went as Papa Smurf and Smurfette. Way too funny
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Just as pictured I pick Schmidts back up constume from magic mike
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Worst fail/WTF I've ever seen on this website. "Plot points hinged around male violence against women (New Girl, American Horror Story)"



What!? Sorry but it should read "Plot points hinged around character violence against other characters". For the first two weeks, Sister Jude whoops Kit's ass quite violently twice, tries to shave Shelley's hair, and pretty much mistreats anyone in her way. But suddenly the doctor has a plot that ends up with Shelley screw up and the show is SEXIST?! What the fuck...
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Where, exactly, do they call these shows sexist?
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www.thefreedictionary.com/imply
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Sorry, but I don't see "violence against women makes us a bit uncomfortable" implying "these shows are sexist."



Now, YOU might view THEM as being sexist for not having a problem with violence against men but then pointing out discomfort regarding violence against women, but these are two very different things.
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Sorry for the double post, but an additional thought: besides, the post itself acknowledges that sometimes these plot points are necessary for the story, but still make them uncomfortable. The doctor assaulting Shelly on AHS was, to them, necessary, but no less discomforting. Doesn't acknowledging that it made sense from a narrative perspective sort of eliminate the argument that the show is being misogynistic? Can the show demonstrate hatred toward women if that hatred is within the show and a necessary part of a character?



And, if we're splitting hairs over "inference" and "implication": sexism and misogyny are two completely different things. One can be sexist against men or women. Misogyny is hatred directed only at, toward, or for women.
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See, I don't think we're supposed to read them as saying, "New Girl and AHS are misogynistic shows" as a whole--they're just uncomfortable with this overall trend from this past week. I highly doubt they'd also praise AHS if they found the whole thing misogynistic. They even noted that the moment in New Girl was probably SUPPOSED to be funny, but it made them uncomfortable. I just don't read an accusation of misogyny in the post, that's all.



There's no need to get nasty. I'm simply engaging in discussion here.
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Are you familiar with the term "inference," or does everything need to be spelled out for you? If I complain about violence against women in a show or major female characters being killed off, I don't have to use the word "sexist" for someone to infer that I perceive something as sexist or misogynistic.
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It's a very strong implication that these shows are misogynistic.
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The "them" of course being the writers of this article. That was unclear on my part.
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Go On: This show is consistently hilarious and poignant, a combination that's not easy to pull off. John Cho was a post-operative comedic genius in last week's episode, but the entire cast was superb. Go Giant Squids! So the fact that Sandy preempted Go On is a WTF, and I'm sure that the episode that we didn't see would have been a FTW.
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Totally agree with Don't Trust the B in Apt 23., Happy Endings, and Homeland as FTWs.

As for your WTF regarding New Girl -- Nick punching Jess in the face: he legitimately thought she was a monster/zombie/freaky scary thing. He was in a state of hysteria because he's terrified of haunted houses... it's not as if he went: "Hey, Jess!" *PUNCH* Plus, he got beat up by a bunch of Jess' co-workers, and Jess eventually punched him back. I have no problem with that. It was kind of funny and it definitely wasn't about female abuse -- it was about accidentally punching a friend. Bummer, indeed.
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Loved that Don't Trust the B---'s episode! Massive crush on Krysten Ritter!
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I didn't see the New Girl male violence scene, but I DID feel very uncomfortable watching the scenes with Shelly and the mad doctor in AHS. But that's part of it, right? The revolting truth of Dr. Aden's (did I get that right?) character and the abuse in the asylum -- particularly way back then. Very disturbing stuff indeed, but I don't think AHS is setting out to lull you into a warm and fuzzy feeling.



That said, it is a bit hard to believe the guy with the arm ripped off and then had so many holes poked into his chest he could barely breath could get up and tackle the monster going after his lady.
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FTW: Disney/ABC considering a Boy Meets World sequel

FTW: It's Always Sunny

WTF: Every show having a Halloween episode. Such a waste of 1/(somewhere between 12 and 24) worth of a season.
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How on earth is TVD in this every week?! Its not the worst show in the world but its treated like the second coming of 'The Wire' on here sometimes.



Agree about Homeland though, that may arguably have been the best episode of the series so far. Danes and Lewis have those Emmys nailed on. And can't believe I have never heard of Vampirates before haha!
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I'd say that it was the influence of Price's love for TVD that allowed for it to be on this list every week.
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Homeland's interrogation scene was some of the best TV in years if not ever. Just two people having a conversation, two great actors flexing their acting muscles with no music to help them out, and I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. Rupert Friend is a great addition to the cast, I hope he's not leaving the show anytime soon. Brody getting stabbed was a WTF moment, as were the kids running somebody over.
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FTW: Dean's Vampirates and the best episode of this season till now - Blood Brother!! The awesome psycho Drexel on Revolution! Dexter growing from strength to strength (Give Jennifer Carpenter an Emmy already). Arrow's fantastic episode. Creepy AHS. TVD's Rebekah who continues to be genuinely compelling. Reese's hilarious date with Maxine without revealing his true identity on POI. TWD's awesome zombie-heads tank!!

WTF: National Guard being taken out like a bunch of novices and Andrea accepting the Governor as easily as she did on TWD. Castle's groan worthy contrived situations (but it kinda gets a pass because of Fillion and Katic's charms). Adam Levine's storyline is plain boring on AHS.

On another note, The Mentalist's 100th episode wasn't really satisfying, but it wasn't bad either.
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The Mentalist episode (Red Dawn?) was interesting in how much of a part Lisbon played in Jane becoming a consultant. I didn't really see the necessity of Hannigan leaving at the end of the episode; presumably there was about four years between this episode and the pilot (during S4, Jane mentioned that he and Lisbon had known each other for seven years). And it wasn't clear to me that Jane hadn't manipulated Hannigan into punching him to gain access to the Red John files.
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FTW: Arrow episode cliffhanger this week (not spoiling it for people who havent seen it). But it was brave of the show to play that card in only its 4th episode.



WTF: Aaron getting back up after being shot and viewers everywhere groan (I really dont care about spoiling this one!)
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