TV, Part 1.

Earl and I spent the evening catching up on the new television season courtesy of our DVR last night. We watched five shows and enjoyed four of them, so we are off to a decent start.

I’m purposely leaving out spoilers because I’m nice.

“How To Get Away With Murder” kicked off season two right where season one left off. Shonda Rhimes packed in a whole boatload of twists and turns in the season premiere and it was in the final moments of the episode that the season storyline arc was firmly established. We are eagerly looking forward to the next episode; what they built the series on in season one solidly continues in season two because it works.

“The Mysteries of Laura” basically became a different television program with a slightly more serious tone. I was on the fence about this one last season because it didn’t really grab me; it took us several weeks to finally catch up on episodes. The introduction of a new character, the new captain of the precinct, killed the vibe of the light vibe that permeated the show last season. They also wrote off the quirky detective with barely an explanation, which I found surprising because she was a fan favorite and contributed heavily to the lightheartedness of the show. It was the light vibe that made this show stand out to begin with. I barely made it through the episode hoping that the captain was a guest appearance but it looks like she’s staying around. We scratched it off the DVR To Do list. If I read somewhere that she’s gone, we’ll reconsider it.

“Life In Pieces” is a new CBS comedy set up as four short stories about a family. The show is very odd. It’s kind of like “Love, American Style” with the little vignettes, but they’re all interconnected and related to each other. OK, maybe more like “Love, American Style” meets “Modern Family”. I found it difficult to digest but it piqued my interest.

“Limitless” is a new CBS action show based on the movie of the same name. Bradley Cooper even makes an appearance in the pilot to connect the two. The special effects are cool, the way they portray thought processes, etc. is interesting and it’s a decent continuation of the “Limitless” universe established in the movie. There are some hefty “leaps of faith” in the storyline but I can deal. I liked the movie, I liked the pilot and I’m looking forward to the next episode.

“Shark Tank” is more of the same deal in previous seasons with folks pitching their ideas to millionaires to get funding for their entrepreneurial endeavor. It’s a little jump the sharky with the addition of guest millionaires, the season premiere featured Ashton Kutcher, but there wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. I don’t particularly enjoy the shows that are missing Barbara Corcoran, because I really like her spirit and approach to the whole thing, so I wasn’t super invested in this season premiere but I’m looking forward to the next episode.

4 1/2 hours of television was all I could digest in one day. I don’t know if I’m going to keep score or blog about this again this year, but here’s what we got so far:

* “How To Get Away With Murder”: A-
* “The Mysteries of Laura”: D — first casualty of the season
* “Life in Pieces”: B
* “Limitless”: B+
* “Shark Tank”: B+