The Too Much TV Roundup- 03/26/23

Succession and Yellowjackets returned on the 26th, and one of these lovely and critically acclaimed shows has pretty easily accessible audio description. The other has audio description that is such a bitch to use, it’s like winning Squd Game. Like, one person inevitably will, but hundreds won’t. And it appears that Paramount Plus and their corporate structure could not care less.

9) True Lies (CBS/Paramount Plus)

English Audio Description?: Yes

There’s this thing that CBS shows do, where their audio description continually reminds you that you can get out of the audio description if you choose. To my knowledge, only CBS does that. It’s a shame that within that audio description, there isn’t a set of instructions on how to get out of this series, or where to locate the film so i can cleanse my brain. When the True lies series was announced, despite what CBS had already done to Training Day and Rush hour, i was stupidly optimistic. Then i saw the cast, and I got concerned. Finally, after getting around to the pilot, i can say without a shadow of a doubt, I would have passed on the pilot. This is one of the worst shows I’ve seen in years, and the two people cast in the lead roles are void of the chemistry and charisma that Schwarzenegger and Curtis had in the original film. It’s aggressively awful. It tries to accomplish the entire plot of the film in one episode, instead of giving Helen time to breathe as a character, she’s almost immediately thrust into this situation. Have some self-respect, and actually ask yourself… does this make sense? Can we actually successfully trim a great movie that was directed by james Cameron and ran for 141 minutes into one 43 minute episode? The answer is no. No you can’t. This pilot is awful. I honestly rarely watch anything this bad. Those of you in the roundup regulars know that dropping into the C level is bad enough, but True Lies is so bad, I’d pull it from air.

Episode Grade: D-

8) Liaison (Apple Plus)

English Audio Description?: Yes

I think the problem with Liaison was simply that it isn’t interesting enough on its own. There are some glimmers of potential, but I’ve seen so many similar shows, that it really made me feel like… how does this show stand out? I don’t think it did. It feels like an amalgamation of ideas that worked well in other shows, but don’t really come together in the pilot. The audio description is weird. I’ll be honest and say that the narrator tasked with translating male voices would not be someone I would choose for that gig again. There were some moments where he actually sounded dis interesting in what he was saying, which made the lines not work. And the mixing here is as such, that it obliterates the original actors performance entirely, so I’m reliant on someone who feels like they were forced to read in class. Not that changing him would have mattered. pilots are important because they set the tone for the series, and the tone I got here was bored.

Episode Grade: C-

7) Free Rich (Netflix)

English Audio Description?: Yes

I’m on the fence about this. I didn’t finish On My Block. I wasn’t that big of a fan. This show, about a box that’s potentially cursed, and the teens who ahve to figure out what’s going on, isn’t really funny or scary. It tries to be both, but it feels like On My Block, which I also felt like never stuck to a genre. I might give this a second episode, because i watched two other things today I’m certain I never want to see again. This one, with its half hour runtime, I could watch again.

5) South Park (Comedy)

English Audio Description?: No

I could use audio description on South Park, as someone who has been watching this show ever since they first killed Kenny, because it often has montages of music that make it hard for me to know what’s going on. I really wanted to know what Cartman’s Dick N Balls looked like. Wait. That sounds terrible. He just happens to turn his giant hot dog into…. Dammit. Basically, Cartman uses Butters to make his hot dog better, and we get a lesson on banking. South Park always seems to be trying to say something, and I think this has something to do with something but I can’t figure out what. it’s fun, it just doesn’t have audio description. But at least home is where the Cartman is now.

Episode Grade: B+

4) Perry Mason (HBo MAX)

English Audio Description?: Yes

As the case starts kicking into high gear, Mason starts looking into these kids accused of a crime they certainly did not commit. Episode 2 was a bit stronger.

Episode Grade: B+

3) The problem With Jon Stewart (Apple Plus)

English Audio Description?: Yes

Stewart was most scathing this episode when he had that montage of all the FOX News hosts first complaining about how we can’t allow small offenses to lead to something bigger, but then in the next montage it was those same hosts all admitting to having done some small crime and laughing about how they got away with it. Yes, lots of white kids get away with shoplifting. But apparently those same people don’t want anyone else to.

Episode Grade: A-

2) Alaska Daily (ABC/Hulu)

English Audio Description?: Yes

As they investigate a pastor who beats his flock, and also try to save the paper from being sold, I’m starting to like this show enough to care whether or not it comes back. It has a new energy now, and I think given a second season, would actually likely get better.

Episode Grade: A-

1) Dear Edward (Apple plus)

English Audio Description?: Yes

Did Edward’s brother have a secret girlfriend? What’s going on with all the other family members. Apple still hasn’t picked up this series, and Jason Katims has been having a lot of 1 season wonders recently, so I’m a bit afraid. But if they keep Liaison and cancel Dear Edward, I will never forgive Apple. I’m still mad at Netflix over Glow. I never forget.

Episode Grade: A

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