Friday, January 2, 2009

24, Lost, Battlestar, Closer: Premiers and Restarts In January 2009

The winter doldrums, filled with reruns after reruns, will soon be over with the season premiers and season restarts of a few good shows in January. Here’s what’s coming up:

Sunday 8:00 PM January 11, Fox

After waiting for what seems like an eternity, the new season of 24 will get off to its official start. If you recall, we had a 2 hour “bridge” to the new season which aired on November 23 titled “Redemption” . This two hour episode was billed as a set up to the new season, but those that know better understand that it was just the discards of their failed start on the season. That two hour “bridge” episode was passable, but they were wise to change venue and move on to something more interesting. In fact, watching that two-hour episode only piqued my interest when they aired the preview of the real new season at the end.

Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) is coming back to Washington DC to face his accusers, and of course trouble ensues. A national security matter drags Jack back into the fray, and he’s shocked to find that his dead friend – who now appears undead – Tony Almeida (Carlos Bernard), has a hand in it. It looks interesting and may be the best show starting up in January. The season premiers on Sunday with a two hour episode, and continues in its normal day on Monday January 12 at 8:00 PM for another two hours.

24 Preview

Battlestar Galactica
Friday 10:00 PM January 16, SciFi

The crew of the Battlestar Galactica has reached earth. But the earth of when? Things look desolate and all blown to bits. Was it at the hands of earth people or someone else? What will it mean for the people of the Galactica, whose whole purpose since the first season was to reach earth and now find it desolate?

Personally, I’m glad that this will be the final run for the show. The show languished in a deep pit of depressing storylines that went nowhere for what seemed like 2-3 seasons. Now that they finally got somewhere and they’re where they wanted to be – with problems of course – hopefully they will have a big finish. Technically, this isn’t a new season; it’s billed as season 4.5, the last half of season 4. But there has been so much time between segments that it feels like a new season. Since I usually like to finish what I’ve started, I’ll see this series through to the end. But, I think I’d rather see Jamie Bamber start up his new role in the UK version of Law & Order.

BSG Preview

Wednesday 8:00 PM January 21, ABC

The Lost season premier is being billed as a three hour event , with the first hour a recap of what happened in the previous season. And I’m one of those people that will need a recap. I remember only the last bits of the final episode from last season, and if I recall correctly, the island blew up and disappeared, with some members of the group making their escape. This series has probably taken more twists and turns than any other show out there, and this has been a detriment. When the series first started it was almost fun to spot all the little embedded codes and messages that seemed to be the cornerstone of the mystery, and after a while those little things became so numerous it was burdensome to try to keep up. The flashbacks were joined by flash-forwards that made things worse. This is another series that has run its course and needs to be over. Because frankly, it lost me.

Lost Short Recap

The Closer
Monday 9:00 PM January 26, TNT

Kyra Sedgwick returns as LAPD Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson, but instead of being in charge of the Priority Homicide Squad, she wrangled herself into the top spot of the newly created Major Crimes Division. This was a smart move for the series, as it will allow the team to get involved in a whole new myriad of crimes. When we last left the team, they were trying to thwart a plan to massacre hundreds of people, which gets one of their squad directly in the line of fire. I’m assuming the season premier – or shall I call it a season restart since the episode is still listed as being in season 4 - titled “Good Faith” will wrap up this story.

Brenda’s also has her wedding coming up with the woefully underutilized FBI Agent Fritz Howard (Jon Tenney), but if we know Brenda, we should expect that even the process of getting hitched won’t go off without a hitch.

The Closer is a great series with a great cast.Hopefully with their new focus of “Major Crimes” they can expand their horizons and make this good show even better.

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