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 TV Bites with Neena Louise

The 2009-2010 Eleventh Annual TV BiteMes

by Neena Louise

 

Worst Actress
Stana Katic, "Kate Beckett", Castle (Katic continues to drag this show down in its second season. It's too bad, too, because otherwise Castle is a pretty good show.)

Best Actress

Jane Lynch, "Sue Sylvester", Glee (Lynch's spot-on delivery of some of the funniest lines in Glee repeatedly stole the show.)

Most Overrated Female

Jane Lynch, "Sue Sylvester", Glee (But, enough already.)

Most Overlooked Female
Liz Vassey, "Wendy Simms", CSI
(It's so easy to get lost on a large ensemble show, but whenever Vassey's "Wendy" put in an appearance, it was like a breath of fresh air. We need more.)

Worst Actor
Kelsey Grammar "Hank Pryor", Hank
(Hank's swift cancellation was due in no small part to Grammar's pompous, one-note, Frasier-as-family-man performance.)

Best Actor

Nathan Fillion, "Rick Castle", Castle (Despite being dragged down by Stana Katic's dreadful acting and boring "Kate Beckett" character - perhaps because of it - Fillion never failed to deliver.)


Most Overrated Male
Matthew Fox, "Jack Shephard", Lost
(Wooden from start to finish.)

Most Overlooked Male
Alan Cumming, "Eli Gold", The Good Wife
(It would've been so easy for "Gold" to be a silly caricature, but Cumming deftly managed to keep him real and watchable - with a pretty decent American accent to boot.)

Worst-Dressed Female
"Teresa Lisbon", Robin Tunney, The Mentalist
(It is possible to be a female detective who'll be taken seriously without needing to dress like a man. Observe Amanda Righetti's "Grace Van Pelt" on the same show.)


Best-Dressed Female
"Laurie Keller", Busy Philipps, Cougar Town
(Philipps' "Laurie" was always dressed young and hip, without looking slutty and cheap - despite the fact that "Laurie" was the resident...well, not slut exactly, but young and free.)

Worst-Dressed Male
"Charlie Harper", Charlie Sheen, Two and a Half Men
(Enough with the silly bowling shirts and shorts already.)

Best-Dressed Male
Neil Flynn, "Mike Fleck", The Middle
(It was so refreshing to see realistic wardrobe. How many of us are just like this, or know people like this: cheap jeans and comfy Walmart shirts? So unlike the zillion dollar designer jeans and shirts that so many everymen wear in TV Land.)

Worst TV Mom
"Jules Cobb", Courteney Cox, Cougar Town
(Ineffectual and needy, it's a miracle her kid turned out ok. Fantasy TV at its finest.)

Best TV Mom
"Gloria Delgado-Pritchett", Sofía Vergara, Modern Family (Let her kid be himself - whatever that may be - and defended him to those that didn't.)

Worst TV Dad
"Zeek Braverman", Craig T. Nelson, Parenthood
(He cheated on his wife, lost everything in a bad real estate deal, criticized his autistic grandson, proffered bad advice to everyone...made me appreciate my father a whole lot more!)

Best TV Dad

"Cameron Tucker", Eric Stonestreet, Modern Family (Didn't seem to want to be anything else but a doting father.)

Worst TV Kid

"Alexis Castle", Molly C. Quinn, Castle (Television is supposed to be fantasy, but "Alexis'" saint act was just plain absurd. If teenagers were really as angelic as this, there'd be something wrong with them.)

Best TV Kid

"Baby Lily", Ella and Jaden Hiller, Modern Family (I don't think I've ever seen such a mellow and content infant - neither in real life nor on screen. I can imagine how many parents are envious.)

Least Likable Character on a Show

"Margaret Allison Hart", Rena Sofer, NCIS (Supposedly the arch-rival of Mark Harmon’s "Jethro Gibbs", they pretended to hate each other, but actually liked each other. Oh, how original. With zero chemistry between the two and incredibly stupid dialogue, I groaned every time the obnoxious "Margaret" appeared.)


Most Likable Character on a Show
"Patrick Jane", Simon Baker, The Mentalist
("Jane's" childlike behavior, barely masking his brilliance,  made him nigh on impossible to dislike. Baker's puppy dog eyes and winning smile didn't hurt. )

Worst Drama
The Good Guys
(Oh, my, what a piece of crap! Probably the worst buddy series I've ever seen.)

Best Drama
The Mentalist
(Though the whole "Red John" thing got plenty tiresome, there were enough other plotlines to hold one's interest.)

Worst Sitcom
'Til Death
(Yeah, I didn't know this drivel was still on, either.)

Best Sitcom
Modern Family
(Though in danger of being over-hyped, this mockumentary-type sitcom was very funny and refreshing.)

Worst SciFi
FlashForward
(Supposedly the next Lost, this rot was even more boring. Hard to believe, I know. Its cancellation, on the other hand, was a whole lot more believable.)

Best SciFi

Fringe (Though straying awfully close to "whatever" territory, there was still enough there to warrant watching.)

Worst Animated Series

Everything not The Simpsons

Best Animated Series

The Simpsons

Most Overrated Series

Lost (Let us all cheer that Lost is now lost forever.)

 

Most Overlooked Series
Better Off Ted
(Now cancelled, I never understood why no one watched this clever - at times delightfully silly - sitcom.)

Worst Writing
Criminal Minds
(When you start finishing sentences before they're spoken, you know it's time to find new writers.)

Best Writing
The Big Bang Theory
(This really should be stale and "whatever" three seasons in, but it isn't.)

Worst Host/Narrator
Oprah Winfrey, Life
(Though I usually stick to the Big Four networks, Winfrey's narration on this Discovery Channel documentary miniseries was such an abomination, it wins the prize, hands down. Winfrey sounded like a condescending nursery school teacher and was so grating I couldn't watch it. As with Planet Earth, I'm buying the original BBC David Attenborough-narrated DVD.)

Best Host/Narrator

Phil Keoghan, The Amazing Race (Amiable Keoghan continued to keep the contestants calm - no matter how ridiculously freaked-out they were. Could've done without some of the seriously-intoned platitudes, however.)

Worst Newscaster/Reporter

Katie Couric, CBS Evening News (Couric's overly-earnest gosh-golly approach to the news made it impossible to take her seriously.)

 
Best Newscaster/Reporter
John Quiñones, What Would You Do?
(Other news shows could learn a thing or fifty from Quiñones on proper reporting.)

Worst News Magazine
20/20
(If I see one more exploitative Dateline-esque story of murder and mayhem on 20/20, I'll just watch Dateline instead. They've been doing the same tired schtick for so long, they're better at it.)

 
Best News Magazine
60 Minutes


Worst Reality Show Series
Wife Swap
(I used to be intrigued by its diametrically-opposed-families premise, but Swap started to seem so staged I couldn't help wondering if they were fed lines just to make "good" television.)

Best Reality Show Series

Undercover Boss (Isn't it everyone workingman's fantasy to have the boss try to do their job? In the process, the "boss" was more profoundly affected than the front-line workers.)

Worst Reality Game

The Marriage Ref (Though not strictly a "game", celebrities giving judgments on real-life marriages was not only patently ridiculous, but boring as hell.)

Best Reality Game

The Amazing Race 15 (Even after fifteen cycles, Race is probably the most "real" - and entertaining - of the reality games on television.)

Worst Reality Villain

Russell Hantz, Survivor (I don't know why so many found him delightfully evil. He was just your run-of-the-mill obnoxious loud-mouthed schnook with Short-Man Syndrome. Yawn.)

Best Reality Villain

There weren't any true delightful "villains" this season. Those that you were supposed to hate were either so obviously just playing a role or were moronic buffoons (see above), making them all either bad actors or boring people. Or both.

Worst Game Show
Minute to Win It
(More like Minute to Humiliate Yourself Doing Silly Tasks.)

Best Game Show

Jeopardy

Worst Score

Lost
(For six long years, it was just the same violins-as-buzzing-mosquitoes over and over and over again. Probably the most unimaginative score ever written, but at least we won't have to hear it anymore.)

Best Score

Glee (What other show could it be?)

Worst Theme Music

Jeopardy (Jeopardy's updated its set. Kept host Alex Trebek's wardrobe current. Ensured the answers and questions were relevant. So what's up with the stale "I'm a little teapot" theme music? Surely they can update it without changing the tune itself.)

Best Theme Music

Law & Order [the original]. (I shall miss it. Well, okay, considering L&O is in heavy rotation in syndication, I can hear it any time, but it remains the best TV theme tune ever.)

Worst Newcomer (that hasn't been cancelled)

V (I thought the original 1980s miniseries was bad, but this dreadful "reimagining" explains why V was on the verge of cancellation all season. Apparently, it'll be back mid-season in 2011, for reasons unknown.)

Best Newcomer (that hasn't been cancelled)

Glee (I don't usually like shows like this - or musicals in general - but the smart, funny dialogue got me hooked. Until...)

Biggest Decline in Quality

Glee (I loved this show before it took its ill-advised hiatus. When it came back, the smart, funny dialogue was dwarfed by the incessant - and increasingly contrived and stupid - musical numbers. If I wanted High School Musical, I'd watch that instead.)

Most Improved in Quality

For the first time ever, no show improved in quality. In fact, most declined so rapidly, their cancellations were foregone conclusions.

Worst Network
NBC (The top network once upon a time - long, long ago - NBC has done everything it could to kill itself this season. If they succeed, maybe we'll get a network with programming worth watching).

Best Network
CBS (Wins the top ratings title again.)

Worst Commercial
Old Navy - "Mannequins". (Old Navy has always had some of the worst commercials, but these went far beyond that. The very first one with mannequins that were losing their body parts was mildly amusing, but the plethora of stupidity that followed became increasingly irritating. And stupid.)


Best Commercial
Discovery Channel - "Boom De Yada" (The World is Awesome). (One of the most entertaining ads on television, even though the tune has the inherent ability to get stuck in your head.)

Biggest Stinker of the Season
100 Questions
(Offensive in its stinkiness. Probably the stinkiest of the stinky sitcoms ever.)

Trend of the Year

Vampires. (Enough already.)


Least Magical Moments
Every minute of the Lost
finale. (Just as boring and "huh?" as ever. At least it's finally over, and will no longer pollute the airwaves. Good, good, riddance!)

Most Magical Moment

Law & Order's final scene. (Thank goodness L&O didn't go the stupid and overly sappy route for its finale after 20(!) seasons. Let us all mourn its passing.)

 

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