Well crap. Intelligence was cancelled in favor of another season of The Mentalist. That makes yet another show down the drain. My Current SciFi category is going to be significantly smaller next season. Let’s look at the count.
Well yes, you could just look at the post below to see the final tally of which freshman sci fi shows should get a second season, but since I’ve been neglecting this site for a week or two, I thought it might good to report on something, anything.
The winners are Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Intelligence. Whether ABC or CBS will take our recommendations to heart is unclear. With a total of 25 votes (i.e., 13 voters, since one of you only voted for 1 show), we probably don’t make up a majority of the viewing (and sponsor-buying) public.
Personally, I voted for Intelligence and Almost Human, but news came this week that Fox didn’t renew the latter. There is a rather clever conversation about the cancellation on Previously.tv (the defacto replacement for Television Without Pity, which thankfully died earlier this spring). Like Natalie and me, the reviewers faithfully watched the show while complaining how it could be better. Or was that just me?
I admit I have been ignoring my favorite sci fi shows. I didn’t watch last week’s Supernatural (Alex Annie Alexis Ann) until yesterday, and have yet to watch “Bloodlines.” (Although I plan to later today.) I just finished this week’s Agents of SHIELD and I have to say, it was pretty darned good. We’ll see where the end of the season takes us. Look for Agents and Supernatural reviews later this weekend.
My sci fi watching schedule has been derailed by my new
obsession for love of interest in Charlie White on Dancing With the Stars. Along with the rest of America, I’ve been smitten with the charming, adorable mop-topped Olympic ice-dancing champion; and have been spending entirely too much time rewatching his dances and stalking him on the internet. As someone somewhere on the internet said, “”If you threw the essence of sunshine, puppies, and rainbows into a jug and shook them up, you’d pour out Charlie White.” Aww.
Hello Charlie White (and Meryl Davis and Sharna Burgess)!
My best friend and her husband have very different tastes in television entertainment than I do. They seem to prefer shows with extreme violence and gratuitous nudity (Strike Back, Game of Thrones), whereas I’m more into shows that emphasize character relationships. I was surprised to hear they also like Intelligence, even though she and I both acknowledge the writing’s not so great. She thinks it’s an overall problem with television right now, saying Strike Back hasn’t been very good this year. I mention this because I see the writing complaint for Intelligence everywhere. It makes me hope for a (better) next season. Now…
How awesome was Gabriel’s mother? I know! Pretty damn awesome! And how adorable was Gabriel the son? No matter how old or tough we become, we always seem to revert to back to children in the presence of our parents. And Josh Holloway was damned cute, how could you not adore him?
We pick up with an injured and bleeding Gabriel giving Riley directions to drive somewhere unknown while Ms. Smart-mouth Mei Chin tries to keep his gunshot wound from gushing blood. It’s Gabriel’s mother’s house! She was an Army field nurse and uses her skills (and a shot or two of whiskey) to patch up Gabriel. She’s a no-nonsense lady. She tells Mei Chin to shut the hell up and reprimands both Riley and Mei to stop their rival bickering. 😀
CBS is certainly putting on a brave face. Last night’s episode was listed as the “season finale” and not the “series finale.” You know what? I’m really, really hoping it’ll be back. The last three episodes were the best of the series, and it left me wanting more.
The Grey Hat (111)
Holy cow! For a minute there, I thought I was back at work at CyberCom! With talk of anonymous hackers, cyber defense, dubious Russians, T-3s, honey pots, and cyber blackmail, I felt right at home.
“The Grey Hat” was the best episode of the season. (I’d say “by far,” but the last two were also enjoyable.) It had a likeable guest character, witty dialogue (and great comedic timing, “for reals”), a few plot twists, multiple crises, and one of the most viscerally intense climaxes ever. And happy endings all around.
Let’s get straight into it.
Intelligence: Cain and Gabriel (110)
Once again, this week’s has little to do with the real CyberCom mission (keeping America safe, one email at a time), but rather the threat of a chemical attack. In a bit of a switch up, director Lillian Strand (Marg Helgenberger) travels to San Francisco with Gabriel and Riley, while Jameson stays back with the doctors Cassidy. Lest you think Lillian is brave and necessary to the mission, she’s on board because her daughter lives there. There’s some angst about whether to tell her daughter to leave the city to avoid the potential attack, but the show’s Voice Of Reason (Riley) tells her to act like a mother and not a bureaucrat.
The actual case is one of Intelligence‘s more interesting ones. Someone is orchestrating individuals in witness protection to build and release a chemical bomb which will leave many of San Fran’s citizens completely paralyzed. He’s using a network of security, surveillance, and CCTV cameras to track everyone’s progress. When Gabriel and Riley check one of the potential bomb-making sites, Gabriel spies the camera and taps into the feed, putting him into the same network as our “orchestra conductor” (also called “rider” here, as in the rider/mule/carrot/stick paradigm). The rider uses the opportunity to call Gabriel on his “head phone.” The conversation gives Gabriel some insight into this guy.
Intelligence keeps missing its mark. The main themes of the episode were supposed to be Gabriel’s hacked computer chip, causing him to turn on his friends and co-workers, and the Athens List. But it’s the humor that was the most memorable. Well, that, and Riley’s awesomeness! She just happens to have a knife hidden in her pants during a hostage crisis, she subdues an out-of-control Gabriel, and helps him get in touch with his inner feelings. All while being gorgeous.
This CyberCom is even more screwy than the real CyberCom. It’s supposed to be the United States’ premiere cyber organization, yet its network gets hacked by the Chinese. Then there’s the Orion Protocol, which consists of cutting through the communications trunk with… a circular saw! And the saw is kept in a glass case to break in case of emergency! Hilarious! I don’t think it was supposed to be funny, but it was.
So much to write about, so many distractions. For example, io9 Is tempting me to waste 10 minutes watching a short film… Oops. Too late! Watched it. Add to that four shows in three days, combined with an episode that didn’t really keep my interest, and you have a “review” of a Monday show on Saturday. Review is in quotes, because this doesn’t really qualify as a review.
Do the writers of Intelligence do any research before putting
pen to paper fingers to keypad? A quick Google search tells me, “Yes, they do.” Bolivia really is indeed a lithium superpower. Now that we have that out of the way, what was the story about?
Some Delta Force buddy of Gabriel’s is killing off all the Bolivian presidential candidates, supposedly on the orders of the incumbent president. Gabriel and Riley, along with their sometimes third-wheel, Jameson (who gets a first name [Chris], a talent [ace shot], and life [asking out a nurse] in this episode), travel to Bolivia to safeguard one Javier León, the one presidential candidate backed by the U.S. Gabriel doesn’t seem too broken up about his buddy, since he’s always considered him to be a loose cannon.
Meanwhile, back in the National Capital Region, Lillian is once again having one of her love fests with the director of the CIA. (Sorry, I don’t know his name.) If anything about this series rings true, it’s the family squabbles in the Intelligence Community.
[Ha! After spending the afternoon writing this post, I forgot to publish it. So, should it be retitled “Thursday is the New Monday Night”? Nah.]
Golly jeepers, where have the past four weeks gone? In fairness, I’ve tried writing several posts, but they never quite convey what I want. Fortunately, only a few new Supernatural episodes have aired since, and Suzanne has picked up my slack. She always has some great insights. Check out her post.
On to Monday nights. Now that Sleepy Hollow is over for the season, we still have two shows of sci fi interest, Almost Human and Intelligence. I’m more I’m interested in Intelligence, but its ratings are very poor and will likely be cancelled, or at least not renewed beyond its first 13 episodes. So why write about it? Probably because I have at least two posts in my drafts queue.
Both shows are at the heart a “cop buddy” procedural, yet in both cases, the lead is rather unlikable. (I disagree, but more on that later.) They also feature women in strong positions, the requisite scientific nerd support, and ultra-cool 3-D renderings.