Sunday, September 26, 2010

Amazing Race Asia - Season 4 premiere

After a pretty long hiatus, The Amazing Race Asia is BACK!

They also updated the theme music (as far as I can tell), but I still hate the "turn and smile" thing that the teams do in the opening credits - they don't even do that anymore on the American one.

The fourth season kicked off at the Thean Hou Temple in KL, Malaysia. Allan gives the usual spiel about how they're embarking on the ride of a lifetime, etc and contestants are told to drive themselves to Batu Caves and later to Georgetown, Penang. I have no idea why no one else followed the Malaysian dudes (who had the home advantage) to the caves and long story short, won the first leg up in Penang on a cruise ship.
  • The Indons had a bad leg - one team had their car break down and the father-daughter team took an unnecessary ferry ride to the Detour/Pit Stop.
  • Didn't expect Hilda to be so whiny, and it's only the first leg (heh) - sheesh. I suppose it's hard to be stoic when you've twisted your ankle. 
  • The only product placement so far was the use of Sony cameras for the Detour.
Now to see whether the Malaysian dudes can hold up their lead..

Friday, September 24, 2010

NCIS: LA Season 2 premiere

 NCIS: LA two-hour, two-episode premiere - oh goody!
  1. The dream chase sequence in the cold open - I always enjoy watching people parkouring in the wild.
  2. Like the new opening credits - always a good indication of who is in and who is out. Too bad about Peter Cambor (operational psychologist Nate), who's now down to "Special Guest Star" :P Unless he's doing some other project in real life that I'm not aware of..
  3. Keeks or Densi for the Kensi-Deeks 'ship? I'm more inclined towards the latter.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What I like about the new Hawaii Five-O pilot

Saw the pilot of the Hawaii Five-O reboot, and it was entertaining enough, I guess.

Here's what I liked about it - spoiler alert be damned.
  • Having the older McGarrett (even if it was in the cold open and was killed during) was pretty dramatic for a show pilot. But not a first.
  • A cop show with no red tape? A MACHIAVELLIAN task force? I'm in!
  • Danno's ringtone for his ex-wife? Obvious, but still got a chuckle out of me.
  • Alex O' Loughlin's Mandarin? Almost pitch perfect.
  • Only mention of Malaysia had us smuggling kids. What the..?!
  • Steve swearing in to take the job offer over the phone to supercede Danno was hilarious.
  • Always nice to see James Marsters (Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer) on TV again as a baddie. Doubt that he'll be a one-off character, he might be back.
  • Grace Park's character's name is a mouthful... but it won't be too bad in the end.
  • Am I the only one that's glad that the team hasn't decided on a name at the end?
Overall, I think it was a good pilot. The episode was pretty cinematic by small screen standards, I might keep watching... if it stays on long enough.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Biggest Loser Asia Season 2 premiere

Two hour long season premiere of The Biggest Loser Asia! Woo hoo!

Which means a portion of the programme would be spent on showing us the audition highlights in 5 cities - Manila, Jakarta, Singapore, KL and Bangkok. There was no sign of the host this round of auditions, which should've been a giveaway; instead, Kristy and Dave (plus last season's winner, David, in Jakarta) did the auditioning. Plenty of cringe-worthy, awkward footage to be had, as well as the touching stories of why people are signing up for the show.

Long story short, the 16 contestants are shipped off to the lovely IOI Resort in Putrajaya, where they meet the new host, future Mrs Naza Marion Caunter, dressed in a brown jumpsuit. First, she tells them to "expect the unexpected" (that cliché), then she nicely tells them that they're gonna into a challenge on the equestrian track where they race through a 4-stage obstacle course, where the fastest man and woman would have the power, as captains, to pick their teams and colours. Trust two of the Singaporeans to win that race (Raj and Fish). The contestants were led to the mansion that they're gonna live in (it's HUGE) and everyone gets to know each other and then there is the selection ceremony where the team captains picked their team members and handed out the red and blue shirts. Notice how she's in the same outfit in the different segments.

So the teams meet their trainers and we get to see the spanking new on-campus gym as well as the dreaded scale, the "lifeline" of the show. Marion (or the producers) threw them the "double elimination" curveball, whereby the two people with the least weight lost would be going home. Ouch. There was no team challenge this round, so we get the usual training footage of people sweating, barfing and falling over (not in that order).

We come to another curveball at the first weigh-in: the double eliminations would occur in the same team *jeng jeng jeng* so everyone was freaking out about being two people short on top of the possibility of going home and losing the weigh-in. That's a lot to absorb.

After some suspense, the Red Team wins the weigh-in and Rico and Desiree from the Blue Team are eliminated.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Hawaii Five-0, the remake

I wasn't even born yet during the run of Hawaii Five-O, so watching the opening credits for the new Hawaii Five-0 was a new experience.

After hearing the theme music used in cheesy fashion in bad presentations and events over the years, I was a little immune to it. But this new one seems promising, even though I had not really seen anything else the main cast had been in prior to this. I also can't help but compare to it NCIS: LA, except that it's set in Hawaii.

I have no idea if this remake will be any good, but I'll probably watch a couple of episodes first for the heck of it.

Top Chef finale - exotic, but meh

The Top Chef finale left me feeling bored: Kevin ultimately winning the show when he hasn't been doing that great up to that point was a little bit like when Hosea winning - he was not one of those people you expected to go very far, let alone win. Of course I'm speaking as a viewer who didn't taste what they tasted on the TV screen.

I had no idea beforehand that it would be in Singapore - their Tourism Board had something to do with that, if you know I mean - but of all places, what the...?! Perhaps the Malaysian Tourism people should shell out money for Top Chef to do a stint there instead of paying Martha Stewart a shitload of money for her 9 day Malaysian vacation, WTF.

I was also not surprised to see K.F Seetoh as the local guest judge, who took the finalists on a street food tour around Singapore and later judge them in Part 1. Must not be easy trying to pick which places to bring them to with what Singapore has to offer. At least he didn't take them to the yong tau foo place, which is a bone of contention between Malaysia and Singapore because they each claim that it's theirs.There's a long list of dishes still being argued over somewhere.

I also had to get used to the idea of the show being so close to home (well, several hours away, but you get the drift), which was... woah.

I was also surprised to see Elaine Daly at the Food & Wine party in the elimination challenge in Part 1 - my first thought was, "What was SHE doing there?"

Even though Angelo was down with some bug, the guy really did luck out getting the fastest winner in Top Chef history as his sous chef; he would've been screwed with any of the others. And those guys were lucky they didn't get the eliminated fellow contestants as their sous chefs too.

A boring ending to an otherwise meh season.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Lie to Me Season 3 Promo

I don't watch these previews, but with the third season of Lie to Me only starting in November... oh, what the heck.

What I don't get is why TJ Thyne is doing the intro... I mean, I know both Bones and Lie to Me are on FOX, but still.

Mad about the Criminal Minds cuts

I know it's been awhile since they announced this, but I'm a little mad that due to budget cuts, they're slowly cutting out the women on Criminal Minds... except for Kristen Vangness of course, but that's a given; imagine the riots if Abby were cut out of NCIS.

I have no idea why the budget cuts, nor do I have any theories about it. But IMO, CBS should just let Charlie Sheen rot and not pay such an obscene amount for him to come back to Two and a Half Men. WTF.

I have nothing against AJ Cook's character, JJ on the show - she was like the "civilian" of the BAU team, the non-profiler who doesn't have to deal with the psychopaths too much on the show. But what happened to her over the last few seasons is like the employer paper trail - her on screen and real life baby, baby daddy... it was a matter of time before she gets written out of the show eventually. I would like to think that she wouldn't be killed off, but it would be too obvious for her to quit the bureau for some lame ass reason and be a full time parent instead. Whatever happens to her next (as in TV gig-wise), I wouldn't go out of my way to watch it.

Monday, September 13, 2010

2010 VMAs

Finally catching up on the VMAs. I have nothing against Chelsea Handler's hosting this year, poking fun at all the celebs; poor Russell Brand got thrown under the bus (haha) for poking fun at the Jo Bros. If it wasn't held in LA, you might not see half the people that were in the audience if it was back on the other coast.

I have no idea how MTV gets away with doing the VMAs the last few years when there are more "reality" shows than music videos on the channel. But, anyway...

Even though I've lost faith in what little credibility the show had to begin with, you just watch it to see what is going to happen for the watercooler talk :P

I also feel like I'm too old for MTV; half the people I don't know or recognise despite hearing their stuff on the radio. I also feel too old to care who is performing and am skipping through/muting them.
  • I would hate to be seated behind Lady Gaga, even though her head gear's not that obstructive compared to whatever else she's worn. I also have nothing against her wins.
  • What is it with medley performances? Audience short attention span? Or because the show is only two hours long?
  • GIVE ME YOUR WIG!! - Chelsea to Bieber in the taped skit
Speaking of MTV, I can't wait to watch the European Music Awards next month.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Louie: Not the average half-hour comedy show

The first season of Louie finally finished.

I like Louis CK and his comedy, but I've never seen his other forays into TV like Lucky Louie or whatever else he was in up to this point. But I enjoyed whatever standup specials that I managed to watch or hear.

As someone who's stopped watching half-hour sitcoms, I gave it a go. While it has its misses, I like it because it's not the conventional American sitcom. It has "short films" (as The AV Club would put it) sandwiched between his standup bits in a comedy club. Some are stupid, some are awkward, but the good ones are good.

Not crazy about the theme song (which is more depressing than anything one has ever seen on the show), but it's now stuck in my head, argh!

I watch it because I like Louis CK and I want the show to work out. And if you've got FX, you should, too.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

New host and contestants for Biggest Loser Asia

I'm curious to see what happens on the second season of The Biggest Loser Asia since I just remembered to find out whether they've unveiled the second batch of contestants or not, which they have on the Diva Universal Facebook Page instead of the Biggest Loser Asia page, like they should've in this photo album.

Oh, have I mentioned that the Hallmark Channel is being rebranded as Diva Universal later in the month? But that's for another blog post.

One thing I didn't expect was Marion Caunter replacing Sarimah Ibrahim as host. I wonder why - does Sarimah really have a lot on her plate, or was she only signed on for the one season, or unceremoniously dumped? Who's to say?

Also - WHY Marion? I don't know about anyone else, but if I was a contestant, I don't think I could take her seriously as host, seeing as other hosts are known to have their weight issues... Was she picked because she's also an E! News Asia host? Her body of work? Hmm. No freaking idea.

Contestants-wise, there are three Malaysians, FIVE Singaporeans (either very the kiasu, or there are more obese people there than one would think), two Filippinos, three Thai people, one from Hong Kong and two from Indonesia. There are two (obviously) expats currently residing in Hong Kong and Indonesia, which was why the last bit sounded the way it did.

Now, we wait and see.