The CarusometerA Carusometer rating of

Third-episode verdict: The Chicago Code

In the US: Mondays, 9/8c, Fox
In the UK: Acquired by Sky 1/Sky 1 HD. Coming soon

The problem The Chicago Code faces is that it’s a very good show, trapped inside a network TV format. At its heart, there are nuggets of brilliance, involving police and city corruption, the politics of policing, life in Chicago, inter-cop politics and what it means to be a police officer. It has a really good cast and when Shawn Ryan isn’t writing it (cf the first episode), the dialogue is good and it all feels very real.

Where it falls apart is when it bows to mainstream pressures and tries to give us the standard cop show of the week treatment. Here we have absurdities piled on the ridiculous, ridiculous gun fights and car chases, and implausibilities that detract in quite substantial ways from the much subtler, cleverer intrigues of the ongoing corruption investigation. 

Hopefully, over time, these will go away as the writers assume they’ve got a hooked audience and can downplay the theatrics because if they can, The Chicago Code will be quite a show. At the moment, though, a decent show is being undermined and although it scores well on The Carusometer, I’m not convinced I’ll stay with it in the long-term.

Carusometer rating: 3
The Carusometer’s prediction: Will last a season, hopefully, but probably not much longer


Question of the week: what two shows would you cross over?

After a few relatively earnest questions of the week of late, let’s go fun. A crossover, as I’m sure Toby will elucidate on if you ask him nicely, is when characters from one TV show appear on another TV show. The simplest crossovers usually occur in spin-offs (eg CSI and CSI:Miami, Doctor Who and Torchwood), or between shows from the same producers or on the same networks (eg The X-Files and Millennium, CSI and Without A Trace, Scrubs and Cougar Town) but other crossovers do take place (eg Homicide and Law & Order: SVU). 

We don’t have to be so limited though. This week’s simple question is

Which two TV shows would you cross over and why?

And if that’s too hard, just tell us what your favourite TV crossover is?

As always, leave a comment with your answer or a link to your answer on your own blog

Wednesday’s “disappearing Zen” news



British TV


Sitting Tennant

Sitting Tennant (week 7, 2011)

Hebbie's Sitting Tennant

Clearly Hebbie isn’t very happy with this “other people getting points” thing from last week, so has decided to go for the nuclear option and contribute this rather splendid specimen for your delight. Happy captioning…

  1. Hebbie: 50
  2. Rullsenberg: 20
  3. Toby, Sister Chastity, Janice, Erin C: 10

In captionland, it’s Lisa G who wins again with a particularly erudite caption. Well done to her and thanks to everyone who contributed a caption.

  1. Rullsenberg: 35
  2. Marie, SK, Electric Dragon: 30
  3. Lisa G: 25
  4. theriverlady, Toby: 20
  5. Jane Henry: 15
  6. Joe B: 10
  7. Virpi: 5

Good luck this week everyone!

Got a picture of David Tennant sitting, lying down or in some indeterminate state in between? Then leave a link to it below or email me and if it’s judged suitable, it will appear in the “Sitting Tennant” gallery. Don’t forget to include your name in the filename so I don’t get mixed up about who sent it to me.

The best pic in the stash each week will appear on Tuesday and get ten points.

You can also enter the witty and amusing captions league table by commenting on the photo, the best caption getting 10 points, everyone who contributes getting five points.

Continue reading “Sitting Tennant (week 7, 2011)”


Review: Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior 1×1

Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior

In the US: Wednesdays, 10/9c, CBS

(Very) long-time readers of the blog will know that I’m not a big fan of Criminal Minds. In fact, I dismissed it pretty much after the first episode, the second season opener didn’t make me recant and the replacement of Mandy Patinkin with Joe Mantegna lured me in for all of two episodes.

My basic problems with it are that it’s very dull, doesn’t really bother with characterisation beyond a couple of the leads, despite being an ensemble show, and although it pretends to be intelligent, largely that’s a thin veneer that covers up an entirely preposterous plot with as much resemblance to real-life as The Magic Roundabout.

Millions of people disagree with me, however. They’re wrong, obviously, but they do. To cater for “these kinds of people”, CBS has developed an identikit version of it called Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, in which a rapid reaction team called a ‘Red Cell’ heads off in Without A Trace stylee to deal with nastiness as quickly as possible.

However, despite the presence of Forest Whitaker, Janeane Garofolo, the red-headed nerdy one from Criminal Minds and Richard Schiff from The West Wing, Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior is just as tedious and stupid, yet without even the few hints of interest that the original had.

Here’s a trailer for the show that for some unfathomable reason doesn’t feature Amber Heard in a bikini (am I on SEO fire this week, or what?).

Continue reading “Review: Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior 1×1”