Regular readers of this blog know I cannot resist a list. Much like Rob Gordon and his buddies, pop culture lists are my kryptonite. I take them very seriously.
So this survey has been going around the internet for a while. You are supposed to do 30 posts in 30 days, and answer one question per day. But who has the time to do that? Well, let me be more generous here: I do not have the time to do that. Instead, I’m going to lump them all into two big posts. Warning: This could get long. And um, probably spoilers ahead for various TV shows.
Freaks and Geeks. It’s so good, y’all. If you haven’t seen it, do yourself a favor and rent the DVD set. No wait, do yourself a favor and BUY the DVD set. Because you will want to revisit these stories again, I promise. At the very least, you will want to watch Bill as the Bionic Woman as much as possible. (And speaking of Bill, I knew I found a kindred spirit when he tells popular girl Maureen Sampson the reason he’s always smiling is because he watches TV in his head.)
02 A show that you wish more people were watching
My staple answer for this used to be Friday Night Lights, but since DirectTV stepped in to save the show for its last three seasons, viewership is not as urgent. (Except, everyone really should watch this show because it is SO GOOD.) So now my answer is its sister show, Parenthood. Luckily, it got a second season, but who knows what will happen after that. My fingers are crossed. Oh, and Parks and Recreation. You guys, IT IS SO GOOD. Remember how The Office used to be really awesome – hilarious and bittersweet at the same time? It’s like that. But instead of Michael Scott, there is Ron (Fuckin’) Swanson, master of the understated; lover of pretty dark-haired women, breakfast food, and carpentry.
03 Your favorite new show (aired this TV season)
This was a rare fantastic season for new shows. Community, Cougar Town, Modern Family, pop-culture phenomenon Glee, Parenthood, and The Good Wife are all shows I started watching this year. That’s a lot. While I love them all, if I have to choose, I’ve got to go with…
Modern Family. Because not only did it bring us Manny Delgato, it also brought us Fitzbo the Clown, comb sheaths, Phil Dunphy, a reason to love Ed O’Neil, Luke as a dog, a dog butler, crazy Shelly Long, and the line “I’m sort of like Costco. I’m big, I’m not fancy, and I dare you not to like me.”
04 Your favorite show ever
Ummm. This is a really hard question. Can I give you a top 5? They are (in no particular order): Sex and the City, Gilmore Girls, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Friends and Frasier. I love them all for very different reasons. And then there are shows airing currently that will probably join the list some day, after they go off the air, like Friday Night Lights. And then there are shows I know are awesome, but I’m not done watching so don’t have them in full perspective, like The Wire and The West Wing. (Yes, I know I take this way too seriously.)
05 A show you hate
Several years ago, I was at my parents’ house for the evening and my mom and I watched about five minutes of Two and a Half Men. Those are five minutes I never got back. Other than that, it’s hard to say. There are a lot of popular shows I don’t get – i.e. don’t understand their appeal. But outright hate? I don’t think any. If I start watching a show and don’t like it, I…turn it off.
06 Favorite episode of your favorite TV show
See above, and with that, my favorite five episodes from my (current) five favorite shows.
Sex and the City: A tie between “One” and “I Heart NY”. “One” because Miranda and Steve finally, finally FINALLY get together, and it’s so sweet and makes me cry.
“I Heart NY” because…um, I can’t even think about it without tearing up. Two words: Moon River. “And by us, I mean New York and myself.” “When I little, I thought it was two twisters.'” Naming the baby Brady Hobbs. Do I need to go on?
Gilmore Girls: Without a doubt, “Last Week Fights, This Week Tights.” I know most people pick Raincoats and Recipes, which is also great, but nothing tops this. Nothing.
Buffy: Well. This is the obvious answer but it’s also the right one: Once More, With Feeling. (Contenders also include “Fool for Love”, “Becoming part II”, “Tabula Rasa”, “Hush”, and basically any episode where Spike gets to be awesome. But come on. This? So good.
Friends: “The One Where Everyone Finds Out.” Runner up: “The One With Rachel’s Other Sister.”
Frasier: Well. Readers should know that’s not an easy question for me. I can’t get into that again, so go select the “Rewatch:Frasier” tab and find out which 40-some episodes are nearest and dearest to my heart. (Though, if my life depended on it, I would probably say “The Maris Counselor.”)
07 Least favorite episode of your favorite TV show
Don’t really think I have a least favorite episode of SaTC. As for the others. Gilmore: Umm, the majority of season 7, Buffy: “Beer Bad”, Friends: “The One With Rachel’s Big Kiss”, Frasier: “A Day in May”.
08 A show everyone should watch
Even though I’m not done yet, I’m going to go ahead and say The Wire. Everyone should know Bubbs. And Dennis. And Stringer Bell.
09 Best scene ever
Oh, man. SERIOUSLY? Well, that’s just insane. I can’t do that. Here are a few my favorite scenes.
From The Wire:
From The West Wing:
From Northern Exposure:
10 A show you thought you wouldn’t like but ended up loving
Um, American Idol. I was only supposed to watch an audition episode in the fifth season. That was four years ago.
11 A show that disappointed you
Lots of shows have disappointed me. Most recently: The Office. Most deeply: Gilmore Girls. Why, Amy? WHY?
12 An episode you’ve watched more than 5 times
For most people, this would be a big deal, right? But as someone who loves TV marathons, um…most episodes of shows I love I’ve seen way more than five times. For the sake of the survey though: Season 4 of Gilmore Girls. I don’t even know how many times I’ve watched those episodes.
13 Favorite childhood show
Favorite shows growing up: I Love Lucy, Cheers, Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. (Remember when Teri Hatcher was not only an acceptable weight, but also completely gorgeous? Ah, nostalgia.) Favorite show now FROM my childhood: The Cosby Show, you guys. Is there any other option?
14 Favorite male character
Ever? Um. Chandler Bing, Coach Taylor, Dexter Morgan, Bubbles, Spike (aka William the Bloody), and Niles Crane.
15 Favorite female character
Carrie Bradshaw, Daphne Moon, Lorelai Gilmore, CJ Cregg, Liz Lemon, and Tami Taylor.
16 Your guilty pleasure show
So many, y’all. But currently: ABC Family’s Make it or Break It. It is EPIC. You can tell because of the opening credits.
That’s it for now, folks. Enjoy the holiday weekend. I’m headed to Chicago, but check back at the end of next week for the thrilling conclusion. Here’s a teaser: Who’s TV death am I still mourning? (This should be easy for anyone who knows my college TV habits.)