- (no subject)
- September 22nd, 2009
Feeling bored and uninspired to do anything useful or interesting, I sat down to watch some TV tonight. I managed to catch the season premier of NCIS and it wasn't bad. Gibbs must be the fasting running human being to ever have lived to have pulled off what he did, but I'm sure I could reason my way into believing that whole bit was somehow possible.
The premier of NCIS: LA followed. I would have had low expectations of such a show to begin with, and when I saw it would star Chris O'Donell and LL Cool J I dropped those expectations even further. I figured I would give it a chance, to see if there was at least of seed of something that could some day end up entertaining.
There was nothing but scorched and infertile earth.
They start off with a shirtless O'Donnell in what looks like a seedy hotel room, staring thoughtfully (at least I think that was what he was trying to portray) out the window. They quickly have the camera focus on what are obviously supposed to be bullet-hole scars on his back. Just in case you've already fallen asleep in the few seconds that your tv screen has been wasted by this show, they show a spontaneous flash-back to O'Donnell being shot in what looks like a dusty third-world market place. It looked like he was shot in the front, so you would expect there to be some marks there as well, but it appears he has a remarkable ability to heal on that side of his body.
LL picks up O'Donnell, and we get to see the first lame attempts both at humor and at displaying the 'buddy relationship'. They drive off, and there is mention of a 'new office'. Our buddies pull into what appears to be an alley in their fancy-looking car (once upon a time I might have known what it was, but I don't pay enough attention to such things anymore). LL explains that the building had been declared unsafe after an earthquake, and that though the office had been in this building for three months, none of the neighbors had noticed yet. They walk inside, and there are shitloads of people everywhere. So, a shit load of people come and go from this building everyday, with at least one of them driving an expensive car (when LL parked there were no other cars around ... maybe they all rely on LA's extensive and reliable public transportation system to get to work) and none of them there ignor'nt civvies living around the area knew yet (LL must know these because he asks all the neighbors every day if they have yet realized they live next to a secret government office). It is never explained why they have to use a secret and disguised office, exactly.
The plot is pretty much broad-casted within the first few minutes, even the 'twist'. A lot of stupid shit happens ... the worst offense perhaps being when LL is leaning against his fancy car out on the street, waiting for O'Donnell to finish up his cross-cultural bonding, when he notices that they appear to be under surveillance by someone in another car down the street. Now, instead of doing anything the least bit intelligent that might allow him to get near the guy, he instantly begins aggressively walking toward the car (leaving his own perfectly good car behind .... because that would have made things too easy I suppose), and begins running after the car when it takes off ... just in case he got luck and it had a breakdown I suppose.
The end is almost as foolish ... when Robin ... I mean O'Donnell is standing right next to the bad guy with his gun drawn but pointed at the ground, he makes no move. The bad guy points his gun, and decides to wait a bit to pull the trigger for whatever reason. Then the 'well-read newbie' (who gets dirty looks from the two so-called geeks at one point for knowing a bit of history) calls O'Donnell's iphone. Fortunately for all involved, the bad guy is an Apple fan, and just could not bring himself to shoot a man with a ringing iPhone. Instead this somehow gives O'Donnell a greater advantage then he had without a gun in his face, and he saves the day.
There was no shortage of 'humorous moments'. For each them, it seemed like they stopped whatever little narrative flow they had going to outline the hilarious banter, just in case the you had difficult noticing you were supposed to be amused. For those who still couldn't tell they added a small bit of "funny moment music" ... a 'trick' which I thought had finally gone out of style, but am dissappointed to see it still alive. They even managed to throw in an anti-gay 'joke', to show just how high-class they writers are ... (don't get me wrong, I love a funny highly offensive joke ... but they managed to get all of the offensive in with none of the funny).
Half-way through I was ready to call it quits, but I felt like I needed punishment for letting myself waste time on TV, and forcing truly horrible TV on myself seemed like the proper sentence.