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September 14 2011

The 10 worst new shows of 2011. ASH's 'Free Agents', SMG's 'Ringer' and 'Grimm' by David Greenwalt & Jim Kouf are cited.

For anyone unaware, Jim Kouf was a consulting producer on Angel for 27 Episodes.
On the plus side, ASH's "Free Agents" in the UK is supposedly a lot better, and it still has ASH! So, there's that.
lol, Ringer worse than Grimm and Charlie's Angles?

Ringer is not "great" television, but come on.
Yeah, I feel it likely that FA can't be that bad, and have hope for the others as well. Also, pilots are just pilots and shows can get a lot better given a bit of time, especially given the talent involved in some of these. Imo, a lot of well-loved series got off to rocky starts.

Part of me just wanted to dismiss the article, but I figured that we don't often see more critical pieces linked to, and there are three different shows here, so it seemed worth it to bring it to people's attention. Hopefully many of us will disagree once we've seen them, in part, or in whole.
For what it's worth, the significant majority of reviews I've read LOVED "Free Agents." The A.V. Club and Grantland both raved over it. This is literally the only review I've read that didn't like it. Can't say the same about "Grimm" or "Ringer," but hopefully they'll bounce up a bit. Hell, it took Buffy a good 7 episodes to really get going.

[ edited by kefka on 2011-09-14 02:27 ]
I'm liking Ringer so far and had no expectations.
Did anyone find that site very annoying in that if I clicked on next photo or one of the numbers often nothing happened? It didn't even try to load a page it was like the link wasn't even there, but sometimes it did work. I didn't even see the whole list because of it. I couldn't get to all the pages.
Anyway I've see some of the same shows on lists of the best shows of the new season, and sometime I think sites just take a dissenting opinion because a new perspective on something brings in more readers that just going with the flow. I'll have to see for myself.
I just checked out MetaCritic, it appears that the overall score is mixed at '50' right now. With Variety, the Chicago Sun-Times, RedEye & Newsday being others who didn't care for it.

http://www.metacritic.com/tv/free-agents-2011/season-1/critic-reviews

Ringer is doing better with a '59' and a lot more positive and mixed reviews.

http://www.metacritic.com/tv/ringer/season-1

They don't have a score for Grimm yet.
@ Minor Annoyance,

I had no difficulty originally, but after you said something I did. First, If I just kept clicking it eventually worked and I got most of the listg, but now the site won't load for me. Maybe it's getting a lot of traffic?
It doesn't include the brief reviews, but here's the list:

1. H8r (CW)
2. I Hate My Teenage Daughter (Fox)
3. Free Agents (NBC)
4. Last Man Standing (ABC)
5. Whitney (NBC)
6. Ringer (CW)
7. Grimm (NBC)
8. Charlie's Angels (ABC)
9. Revenge (ABC)
10. Person of Interest (CBS)
I just watched the Ringer premiere and really liked it.It has potential.
These critics who judge a whole season negatively based on a pilot episode, or a couple of episodes, slay me. See how I worked that in there? I am so excited to see Sarah on prime time again, it's unreal, and no bad review is going to dampen it.
I liked Ringer quite a bit. Some really bad special effects in one scene, but otherwise it was entertaining. I'm hooked.
I enjoyed the first episode of Ringer. I definitely will be tuning in next week.

I noticed that one of the production companies listed in the credits was called "Green Eggs and Pam". Pam Veasey (NCIS NY) is the executive producer. I wonder if Sarah has formed a production company. Sarah is a co-executive producer and she has a well known love of Dr Suess. Perhaps the two have formed a production company together.

edit sp

[ edited by Anne 5_by_5 on 2011-09-14 04:06 ]
Call me crazy but I loved Ringer for what it is and loved Sarah and the filming (except for boat scene) I'll be tuning in!
Welcome back SMG!!
The link's not working for me, but I'm glad to hear people are enjoying Ringer. I'll be watching tomorrow, when they post it on the CW site ... which means I get Ringer and S9 on the same day. Sometimes life conspires to make me happy. :-)
It's not on here yet, but I take it they didn't fix the boat scene. That is a shame. People have been complaining about that scene since last May. Shocking that they didn't correct it.
I enjoyed the premiere epi of Ringer a lot.
Yeah, I'm shocked they didn't re-film the boat scene. Oh well. CW budget.
Ringer was great and SMG is just as lovely now as ever. It's really pathetic for folks to label this show as the worst ever after having watched one episode. I mean, really?

Anyway, I quite liked it.
Haven't seen "Ringer" yet, but I think "Free Agents" is one of the better ones among the new crop of sitcoms.
That boat scene was laugh-out-loud atrocious. There were some other issues I had with #Ringer but I don't mind that it's schlocky. It very well could improve, and I'll give it time to do so. I do love a good sudsy drama.
Yeah, I think Grimm was competent but dull, while Ringer was out and out terrible. So Ringer will probably be more fun to watch, but I think it's a worse show. Especially, as mentioned, the boat scene.

Excited for Free Agents, still.
Ringer was shaky in some parts, and yeah that boat scene... whoa. I even think some of the water was CGI. However, I liked the characters and the duality of it all. Reminds me of a recently cancelled Fox show... Bridgette is endearing and I can't wait to see how she handles her situation.
The structure of Ringer really threw me for a loop. They were in such a hurry to get to the premise, they skipped what an interesting journey it would have been to get there. The premise is maybe interesting in a pitch meeting sort of way but that's it. They shouldn't have fast forwarded events to get there; there isn't a great enough place to be.
I agree, dispatch. Should have been a slower build. At least 2 eps to get to where we are at the end of the pilot.
Guess I am just used to the very fast pace of The Vampire Diaries, but I enjoyed Ringer and the pace. The end was a surprise and my first thought was, “Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive”. Sir Walter Scott.

Looking forward to Jason Dohring showing up, I was never a fan of the character Buffy, watched because of Spike.
Can someone explain the 'boat scene' thing for me please? I must have missed the story at the time.
Saw Ringer. Was confused part of the time. And I have to say the scenes in the motorboat might have been the worst green screen scenes ever recorded; just laughable. I mean, they were in a boat that was apparently going about 8000mph, and their hair was barely being blown in the one-shot close-ups, and you could just about see the green screen when they shot from behind. Not SMG's fault. But as an opening, lots of set-up- 2 sisters with problems, one playing the other but finding out all sorts of things that will complicate her life. And then there was this one scene, where SMG says "I don't wanna talk about it" and I was right back in New Moon Rising, where she said the exact same words in a different context. :-) This ain't great TV, but I think I will keep tuning in for it.
Can someone explain the 'boat scene' thing for me please?

The effects were very, very bad. And I don't notice such things that easily. It was super distracting. As were some of the twin effects. And the directing. Let's follow a blank wall for a long moment during a tense action scene! It was bizarre.

I did like the story so far.
I really wanted to like RINGER (and I'll stick with it for a while), but I found it really poorly done. Great cast, but wasted. I like the premise, but the execution was abominable.

You could focus on all kinds of details, like the way it used one sappy snippet of music after another to the way the whole affair was edited. The production struck me as amateurish. And because the problems with the show are at the level of writing, I'm not optimistic.

I GOT IT! It was bugging me about where I had seen the guy who play's SMG's sponsor on the show. THE GOOD WIFE, where he plays a drug lord. So his role on RINGER is ironic given that. Hate it when I can't remember where I've seen someone.

BTW, the guy who plays the husband of Siobhan's best friend, with whom she was having an affair, was on LIFE UNEXPECTED, but he was also on an episode of ANGEL. He was a relative of the bad guy in "Billy". I think that was the name of the episode, about the guy who could turn any male into a murderous woman hater. One of the best ANGEL episodes ever.

As far as the rest of the list goes, I've read critic after critic who as blasted several of these shows based on the initial screener. I know a lot of people like to blast critics, but I generally find that when a majority agree,

However, I've read a few critics who have liked CHARLIE'S ANGEL, including some of the very best around. Not high on the list of shows I'm most excited about trying out (that would be topped by HOMELAND - with Moreena Baccarrin in one of the roles - and ONCE UPON A TIME).

One more thing, about the boat scene. I found it odd that they kept switching back from rear projection to shooting on the actual ocean. I'm sure that was because of the need to manipulation more easily in the studio the special effects, but it looked cheap to me as a result.
Njal,

That's Kristoffer Polaha. He was on the Dollhouse Ep "Instinct" too. He also played a bf of Eliza Dushku on Tru Calling.
I think that the show had a good deal of potential. Some aspects of it closer to being realized than others. I wasn't terribly bothered by the boat scene, but then I tend to really ignore how realistic most visual aspects are.
I liked it, didn't love it - it feels like a show, like any show, which needs to find its legs. There was some Buffy synchronicity that tickled me: Tara Summers plays Gemma, the friend. Siobhan's husband's name is Andrew. I thought I heard Siobhan mention Xander in a phone conversation but can't find a cast reference online, and for a few lovely seconds, thought Mike Colter (Malcolm) was D.B. Woodside.
I love SMG, but I felt this probably would not be my kind of show. After watching the pilot however, I'll give it a chance. They did rush through setting up the premise, but that could be a good thing if it means:
- more action and less melodrama
- less "twin" scenes
I was a little put off by SMG's acting in the twin scenes but once she started interacting with Siobhan's friends and husband I thought she did better. I enjoyed the show. My favorite part that actually got a "ooooh..whats gonna happen next?" out of me was when Nestor Carbonell walked in the door of Siobahn's house.

Nestor and Ioan(sp?) are the best parts of the show so far. I also liked Bridgette's sponsor and hope he doesn't fade out of the story since he's not part of the main cast(he's not, is he?). I thought SMG had good chemistry with the sponsor.

[ edited by eddy on 2011-09-14 14:48 ]
At least Ringer isn't Fox or it'd already be canceled.
Tonya, I also thought I heard mention of a Xander.
Ringer's definitely not the worst show I've seen, but with pressure from my fiancee to limit the amount of TV I watched (cool story bro), I have to be picky. I'll give it another four episodes. If nothing else, I really hope the director(s) in future episodes lay off all the damn mirrors. We get it, okay?

Frankly, I'm more disappointed that Person of Interest is on the list. I was looking forward to that.

[ edited by SpendTheNightAlone on 2011-09-14 16:29 ]
Jobo and Tonya--

At one point when Bridget says Andrew, it sounds like Xander. I rewound it to check and yeah, that's what it was.
I like that SMG still says "okay" in the same way.
Did anyone else think Free Agents was way better than this review would have us believe? It made for a pleasant surprise for me.
At one point when Bridget says Andrew, it sounds like Xander. I rewound it to check and yeah, that's what it was.

How did Sarah make Andrew sound like Xander? [Xandrew?] (wishful thinking or I need a hearing aid ... :-))
I also thought Ringer had promise. I guess time will tell.
I was a little put off by SMG's acting in the twin scenes


I think the problem with the twin scenes was more budget than acting. They just didn't look quite right.
Matt7325, I like the way she says "okay" too, so distinctive.

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