The Too Much TV Roundup- September 2nd

Well, yes, this is a roundup, but pretty much also serves as my official thoughts on the new Lord of The Rings series.

1) Lord Of The Rings: The Rings Of power (Amazon)

English Audio Description Available?: Yes

So, it has arrived. And it was worth the arrival. JA Bayona, whose directorial career is a mixed bag of sorts, manages to direct a rather well done pilot for a series set in Middle earth. It has an expansive feel to it, much the same way a Game of Thrones series does, or even something like The Wheel Of Time, where there’s a big world that is not ours, rules that are not ones we are used to, and ways of life specific to things that don’t exist in reality. And all of this is given a sense of doom, as the series shapes itself around Sauron, and his rise to power. As a prequel series for fans, it likely hits the mark. As someone who personally loved the movies, but hasn’t watched them an insane amount of times, has watched The Hobbit films, read the books, and even played some video games, i was well prepared. I still think, that because of how the show starts, you need to know very little about middle Earth to enjoy this show. It drops a decent amount of exposition at the beginning to give you a rundown of what this world is, and the entire thing is essentially an introduction to a prequel TV series. This is where it all begins, and all the other stuff doesn’t need to be referenced. That being said, from an audio description standpoint, for this being a fantasy series that Amazon dropped a ton of money on, the narration is one that seems more suited for any old show. It’s well written, but not necessarily for a fantasy, and certainly not for a world crafted like middle Earth. My only assumption here is that they saved time by guessing most people knew what this was going into it, and they didn’t need to spend a lot of time describing the details, the Elven cities, their hand crafted wardrobes, and the hobbits are essentially reduced to having big hairy feet and being small. how small? There’s no size relativity given here, so that’s up to you to decide if they are like toddlers, or Tom Thumb. I know these things get quality checked, and I would really love to know who these blind people are who are giving things a thumbs up sometimes. If you are heading into this, I think you’ll be fine, but if you’ve never visited Middle Earth in any media before, you may also have some questions.

Final Grade: A

2) Solar Opposites (Hulu)

English Audio Description?: Yes

Ever wondered what happened to all the other ships sent from the planet? Well, most of them apparently found T-Rex’s.

Episode Grade: A

3) The lake (Amazon)

English Audio Description?: Yes

Just when you think Justin has really started to thrive, and is looking forward to just being a part of his birth daughter’s life, as a birth father, or whatever, his sister has to take what was first a creative prank and use it to make sure Justin and Billie can’t come back next summer. Cold. This series isn’t over yet, hopefully they turn that one around.

Episode Grade: A-

4) Evil (Paramount Plus)

English Audio Description?: Yes

A battle for Kristen’s youngest is at the center, while we are also distracted by a mother who was given Kristen’s embryo and is finally pregnant for the first time ever and super excited about it. This episode does *NOT* end well.

Final Grade: B+

5) Baymax (Disney Plus)

English Audio Description?: Yes

After last week’s triumphant and beautiful 3rd episode, Baymax tackles food allergies. I’m starting to get a vibe that kids could really learn something from Baymax during this series, and it’s cute enough I’ve made it 4 episodes into something I’m sure was designed for elementary school children.

Episode Grade: B+

6) Virgin River (Netflix)

English Audio Description?: Yes

This is just where this show lives. Seventh episode. Nothing’s really changed. It’s still obviously not a good show, yet has some draw and appeal I can’t shake, so i just really don’t know how to grade it, so i just throw it a B grade and walk away. I’m 4 seasons in, so to act like this show sucks is silly, when it’s pretty much always been the same show.

Episode Grade: B

7) Pretty little Liars: original Sin (HBO MAX)

English Audio Description?: Yes

holy Shit Actors, Batman! I care not who he is, but Karen’s father, who apparently is also a cop, and likely to stick around, is a god awful actor. Not that the rest of the cast is good, because they’re in a Pretty little Liars spinoff. But, this guy, is like next level, Plan 9 From Outer Space bad. Emotions seem to escape him altogether. He reacts to everything in the most intensely inappropriate way possible, and that says a lot because the girl playing Kelly is pretty bad. Her “grief” is some of the worst acting ever, but I also think there might be a point to that. Heck, she could be A. But this cop/father? Holy. Shit. I’d fire my casting director for Season 2 just for having hired this guy. I think, without exaggeration, his performance is the singular worst performance in any show this year. The rest of the episode was serviceable entertaining for its genre and target audience, but damn. I really don’t know if I can take a full season of him. If he’s in every successive episode, I’m out. Someone tell me he dies. Please.

Episode Grade: C

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