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TV Tonight: Thursday

By admin Published: September 24, 2009

Am managing to get over the loss of Macy Gray from "Dancing With the Stars" enough for a few notes on tonight's TV.

New: "FlashForward" (ABC).
Returning: "Grey's Anatomy" (ABC, two hours; "Private Practice" returns next week), "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" and "The Mentalist" (both CBS).
In progress already: "Bones" and "Fringe" (Fox), "Survivor: Samoa" (CBS), "SNL Weekend Update Thursday," "Parks and Recreation," "The Office" and "Community" (all NBC); "Vampire Diaries" and "Supernatural" (The CW).

A DVR-stuffing kind of evening. I've got mine going for about seven hours of stuff I have not yet seen, including "Grey's Anatomy," which as of yesterday had posted the first hour but not the second; I'd rather see it all one way, so I passed on the first hour. Besides, ABC's online screening system can be a pain.

As for what I have seen, it's a busy day at the office, couple of things to write, so I'll keep this tight. "FlashForward," about the aftermath of the moments when everyone in the world blacks out, has a cool premise and some nice moves in tonight's premiere. But it is also throwing out so many different plot strands in the premiere, I don't know how it will be able to follow all of them satisfactorily. It reminded me of one of those series-ending episodes a serialized drama does when it has been told it's being cancelled -- and so jams a lot of material into a relatively short time because it won't get another chance to tell the story. Of course, that makes sense in that situation. "FlashForward" is unnecessarily packed with things which might have been spread over two or three episodes. Makes me wonder how long they think they'll have on the air. So I liked it, but I am suspicious of it.

Good "Parks and Recreation" tonight, continuing that show's arc of improvement, although it's hard to top last week's gay-penguin-rights episode. Excellent "Community"; having introduced almost all the characters a week ago, it now lets them go out and be funny. Splendid stuff with Joel McHale and Chevy Chase working together, but I also like a subplot involving the women on the show, and my friend Yvette Nicole Brown gets my (admittedly self-interested) favorite line of the night.

Hoping to have some more notes after watching tonight, but it may be Friday before I get to some things. As for "DWTS," I still haven't seen all the women's performances. I did see Canton's own Ms. Gray, and heard her jaw-dropping comment, but wondered if that would prompt people to vote for her just to hear what she might say next. (Sort of the same reason Adam Carolla) lasted. But I can't say if she was the best/worst of the night. Ashley Hamilton, though, seemed the likeliest of the men to go -- bad dancer, no clear fan base, and if you're going to have them identify you as an actor-comedian, you should be funny at least once. Also, he looked like a Silly Putty extension of Diedrich Bader.

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