Ch-ch-changes ... .
When I was growing up, my father always commented that change was difficult for me. As I've gotten older, I've learned to roll with the remote control. Because when you watch TV like it's your job you can't get too attached to anything. If I did I would still be trying to watch "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" on The WB. So I really try to not to get too attached to shows that may be cancelled, characters that may be killed off and series that may have a free fall decline in quality (oh you know who you are).
Let's take a look at some of the changes happening to some of our favorite shows and how we're coping. This is the first official meeting of the TV Gal support group for TY (television year) 06-07.
"The Office": The Emmy-winning comedy took a big risk last May when Jim confessed that he was in love with Pam and kissed her. It was a pitch perfect television moment. And when a show sets the bar that high, viewer expectations are at an all-time fever pitch. So how did the show do last week? It was a good, but not great, episode. I loved the "you go girl" moment that Pam left Roy not because of Jim but because it was the right decision for her (she's even taking art classes). Now Jim's in a new, yet equally boring office, where no one finds his hijinks funny (the old calculator in Jell-O trick does not go over well). And Pam is left with no one to share knowing glances and smirky smiles with. Both John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer say more with their facial expressions than many actors do with pages of dialogue. Last season, the Emmy-winning "The Office" deftly mixed over-the-top satire with real human emotion. It was often preposterous but still managed to have an ongoing storyline viewers could hook into. That's not an easy line to walk and the premiere definitely had a few fumbles. But these are small quibbles for a comedy that continues to break with traditional sitcom conventions in order to find the big, more clever and more meaningful laughs."CSI": Was all the brouhaha about Grissom and Sara's romance much ado about nothing. It certainly doesn't seem like their clandestine romance is going to interfere with business as usual in the Las Vegas crime lab. You know I love it when the television audience is in on a secret the characters aren't (it's like the dramatic version of the Chandler/ Monica situation on "Friends"). The final minutes were much more surprising and disturbing. It was a such a jarring change of pace and tone that I wasn't even sure what was happening. Will Catherine be okay? That has me much more concerned than any time Grissom and Sara are spending together outside of work."Gilmore Girls" (premiering Tuesday at 8 p.m. on the CW): Our favorite girls had quite a bit of upheaval over the summer. After the shocking final moments, we learned that Amy Sherman-Palladino, who created the series, would not be returning as the show's executive producer. And, well, we all started to panic. Could anyone else write for the fast-talking, pop-culture referencing mother-daughter duo? Thankfully, yes and the premiere is in pitch-perfect shape. I won't spoil anything here but I will tell you the biggest question I have is where the show will go next. But I definitely can't wait to find out.Quotes of the WeekCan you smell the new season in the air? There are lines to quote and people to see. Kids, we are back in business."Dad, can't you just skip ahead to the part where you met mom? I feel like you've been talking for like a year." The daughter to her dad (Ted) on "How I Met Your Mother.""Wow, I didn't know diversity could be so gorgeous." Lindsay to Christine about the new teacher (guest star Blair Underwood) on "The New Adventures of Old Christine.""We're not working together. You're just here to lend a hand." Michael to T-Bag on "Prison Break.""You have no idea how long I wanted this." Jim to Pam on the season premiere of "The Office.""I got you a veggie burger." Grissom to Sara on "CSI." And that, my friends, is the only hint we got that these two are still in a relationship."While baseball, guns and strippers can help, the only thing that can really heal a broken heart is time." Ted about Marshall on "How I Met Your Mother." Thanks to Sam for the quote."Worried about meeting your one patient a week quota?" Wilson to House on "House." Thanks to Sean for the quote.Where Have I Seen Them Before?Shawn recognized Carter Jenkins, Miles on "Surface" last season, was Ray, Jr. on the season premiere of "CSI: Miami." We also saw him in the season premiere of "House" as the son of the man in a catatonic state.Robin was the first to recognize Kevin Rahm was the partner of the man who committed suicide on "CSI." Rahm was Kyle on "Judging Amy," Joan's teacher Mr. Tuchman on "Joan of Arcadia," and on the pilot of "Crumbs."Bryan recognized Joel Grey, who played the other Arvin Sloane on "Alias" last season and was Doc on "Buffy," as the patient Ezra Powell on "House." Grey also played the Emcee in both the Broadway and movie version of "Cabaret." Bryan also caught Leighton Meester, Savannah on "Surface," Behrooz's girlfriend Debbie on "24," and Justine on "Entourage," as Ali on "House." And she'll be back this week.Michelle recognized Steven Eckholdt as Hope's boss on "Smith." We can pull Eckholdt out of the "so deserves his own show file" so I can tell you that he was Henry on "The L Word," Congressman Doug Westin on "The West Wing," Joe on "Providence" and Mark on "Friends."Seth recognized Rashida Jones as Jim's new co-worker Karen on "The Office." Jones was Detective Carla Merced on "Wanted" and Louisa Fenn on "Boston Public."Karen recognized Peter Paige, Emmet on "Queer as Folk," as Benjamin, the brain cancer patient on "Grey's Anatomy."New Shows This WeekAh so much TV, so little time. A look at the new shows coming to your living room this week."Runaway" (premiering Monday at 9 p.m. on The CW): There are times when all TV critics must take a stand, and I'm taking one on "Runaway." While many have picked this drama from Darren Star, Ed Zuckerman and Chad Hodges (the man behind ABC Family's "I Want to Marry Ryan Banks") as the worst of the season, I liked it. Donnie Wahlberg stars as a father who must take his entire family on the run -- think "Everwood" meets "24." Plus, it also stars Leslie Hope ("24") and Sarah Ramos ("American Dreams"). Was I crazy to like it? Has the death of my TiVo clouded my judgment? After you watch the premiere, let me know what you think. Three and a half stars."Heroes" (premiering Monday at 9 p.m. on NBC): I know this is so not what you want to hear, but despite a great cast, I really found the pilot quite lackluster. We'll talk more about this show next week. Three stars."Help Me Help You" (premiering Tuesday at 9:30 p.m. on ABC): Comedies, comedies, everywhere and not a one to love. The question I've been asked most this season is what's my favorite new comedy? And my disappointing answer is I don't have one. But "Help Me Help You" has some promise. Ted Danson is Dr. Bill Hoffman, a therapist in need of therapy, and it's the only new show I watched that actually made me laugh out loud. Jane Kaczmarek (who so deserved to win the Emmy this year) is a hoot as Dr. Hoffman's ex-wife. Three stars."Ugly Betty" (premiering Thursday at 8 p.m. on ABC): I'm always up for something different on TV and this English version of the popular telenovela is decidedly different in tone and execution. It tries to simultaneously be campy, clever and authentic. In the pilot, Betty (America Ferrera, one of the most charming actresses ever to hit the small screen) gets a job at a fashion magazine where she must deal with a handsome and slightly self-centered boss (Eric Mabius) and navigate the tricky political landscape of ambition that surrounds her (lead by a pitch perfect Vanessa Williams). I wasn't as in love with the pilot as I wanted to be - something still seems not quite right about the tone the show is trying to hit. For now three and a half stars with serious potential to be bumped up to four stars."The Game" (premiering Sunday at 8:30 p.m. on The CW): You know, after watching the episode of "Girlfriends" that set up this quasi spin-off, I really thought "The Game" had promise. But now that I've seen the first episode, I'm so disappointed. The show about football players and the women who love them basks in stereotypes (jealous girlfriends, suspicious wives, and overbearing mothers) which may have even been okay if the show were funny which, alas, it is not. Two stars.Highlights of the Week Ahead
All times listed are Eastern Time for Sept. 25 to Oct. 1It's not very often that I feel the need to say threaten TV execs, but I am telling you right now if they brought back "7th Heaven" (which miraculously returns for an 11th season Monday at 8 p.m. on the CW) just to kill off Reverend Camden it is SO on. It's been wildly reported that the Camden patriarch will suffer an inoperable heart condition this year. Why? I've said it before but it's worth repeating -- Hell hath no fury like a TV Gal scorned. It will be interesting to see how the Camden clan does this year -- most people I talked to don't know the show is actually coming back (they're the show that cried "series finale").TV Gal reader Amy and her husband think it is no coincidence that Sarah Paulson's character on "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" (Monday, NBC, 10 p.m.) is named Harriet Hayes. Will we find out that she is somehow related to Ainsley Hayes on "The West Wing?" This week's episode is as good as the pilot so make sure to check it out.Jeffery Dean Morgan, the hardest working man in show business last season, returns as Sam and Dean's father in second season premiere of "Supernatural" (Thursday at 9 p.m. on The CW).Seth Meyers joins Amy Poehler at the anchor desk in the season premiere of "Saturday Night Live" at 11:30 p.m. on NBC.That's all for today. I will be back next week to tell you all about my new TiVo (can the trust be rebuilt?) and the season premiere of "Lost" and "Veronica Mars" (I've seen two the first two episodes and I'm happy, happy, happy), a look at "The Nine," my favorite new show of the season, and check in on our favorite reality shows including "Dancing with the Stars" and "The Amazing Race." Have a question, seen a familiar face, have an inside scoop or want to nominate a quote of the week? Write me at firstname.lastname@example.org Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times