Almost Human! J.J. Abrams! Whee!

Eagleheart (Thursday, Nov. 14, Adult Swim), season premiere: In its first two seasons, Chris Elliott’s Eagleheart fought and exacerbated different crimes of the week in each episode; his Marshal Chris Monsanto may be prone to psychotic violence and gratuitous collateral damage, but he gets the job done. This time around, Eagleheart is a serialized 10-part saga, subtitled Paradise Rising, centered around the death-by-woodchipper of Marshal Brett (Brett Gellman), and Monsanto’s quest to clear his own name in a vast murder conspiracy that, somehow, involves Martin Sheen (Martin Sheen). There’s also the usual epic bloodshed, body count and general mistreatment of Marshal Susie (Maria Thayer); Eagleheart is still in touch with its roots, after all.

Ground Floor (Thursday, Nov. 14, TBS), series debut: Since Ground Floor was co-created by Bill Lawrence (Cougar Town, Scrubs), The Only TV Column That Matters™ enjoyed a millisecond of hope that Ground Floor wouldn’t be just another craptastic TBS sitcom with an abrasive, tacked-on laugh track. Guess what? It’s just another craptastic TBS sitcom with an abrasive, tacked-on laugh track—and it also completely wastes the comedic talent of Scrubs alum John C. McGinley. Not that this corporate-office-place “comedy” looks expensive (it was probably shot on the Men at Work set during lunch breaks), but TBS could have saved time and money by just buying rerun rights to the legitimately funny Better Off Ted. Do I have to run all the networks?

Raising Hope (Friday, Nov. 15, Fox), season premiere: Speaking of running networks, who the hell decided that Dads should be leading off Tuesday nights while Raising Hope, the show that got Fox back into the comedy game, is banished to Fridays? While we’re at it, how is The X Factor still a thing? Anyway: Season 4 of Raising Hope will be burned off, er, presented, in back-to-back Friday twofers until the network gets around to joining it up with still-in-reserve military sitcom Enlisted sometime in January. You know, if it lasts that long here. Watch now; watch hard.

Almost Human (Sunday, Nov. 17, Fox), series debut: From J.J. Abrams comes the futuristic—2048, to be exact—tale of a police force that mandates every cop be partnered with a human-like cyborg. Naturally, veteran officer John Kennex (Star Trek’s Karl Urban) hates machines, but reluctantly comes to trust his new crime-fighting iPartner (Michael Ealy). It all sounds suspiciously like a 1992 series called Mann and Machine (or maybe even 1976’s Holmes and Yo-Yo—go ahead, look it up), but so what? J.J. Abrams! Future robot cops! Like Fox’s left-field hit Sleepy Hollow (which it will be paired with on Mondays after its debut), Almost Human mixes the fantastical with enough humor and, well, humanity to connect with The Masses better than previous sci-fi forays like the mind-effing Fringe; meanwhile, Urban is just straight-up cool. Should be a hit … emphasis on should.

On the Rocks (Sunday, Nov. 17, Food Network), series debut: “Top consultant and bartender extraordinaire John Green assesses establishments that have taken a ‘dive’ in hopes of filling the bar stools and pint glasses once again,” it says here. “(There are) updates to weathered décor and flawed menus, (and) tackling staff problems through intense bar training; John’s on a mission to help shabby watering holes and dysfunctional nightclubs reinvent themselves.” So, it’s Bar Rescue. Is Green going to “fix” all of the clubs that Jon Taffer already saved/screwed? “I’ve revamped your pathetic brewpub as an mid-scale strip club and steakhouse—welcome to Show Us Your Tips. My work here is done …”


Caesar and Otto’s Deadly Xmas

While working as a department store Santa and elf, brothers Caesar and Otto run afoul of a psychotic St. Nick—who, of course, goes on a blood-splattering killing rampage. The only Christmas movie you’ll need this holiday season, kiddies. (MVD)

The To-Do List

An overachiever (Aubrey Plaza) who missed out on the booze, drugs and sex of high school makes a list to do it all before she goes to college … because there’s no booze, drugs or sex in higher education? As believable as Plaza as a teenager. (Sony)

Violet and Daisy

Meanwhile, teen assassins Violet (Alexis Bledel, 32) and Daisy (Saoirse Ronan, 19—OK, checks out) target a mystery man (James Gandolfini) and learn Valuable Life Lessons. Also starring Danny Trejo, because Danny Trejo’s in everything. (New Video Group)

We’re the Millers

A pot dealer (Jason Sudeikis) recruits a stripper (Jennifer Aniston) and two kids (Emma Roberts, Will Poulter) to pose as a vacationing family and transport an RV full of weed over the Mexican border. Oddly enough, no Danny Trejo. (New Line)

The World’s End

Five childhood pals (including Simon Pegg and Nick Frost) embark on an epic 12-bar pub crawl, only to be derailed by a robot apocalypse that threatens to replace humankind with machines. So, this trilogy didn’t include Paul, huh? (Universal)

More New DVD Releases (Nov. 19)

2 Guns, The Advocate, All Is Bright, Breaking the Girls, C.O.G., Catch of the Day, Deceptions of Love, Fear Lives Here, I Am Zozo, Lost Girl: Season 3, Paranoia, Planes, Primitive, The Ripping, Roulette, Rush: Clockwork Angels Tour, Treme: Season 3.

Bill Frost has been a journalist and TV reviewer since the 4:3-aspect-ratio ’90s. His pulse-pounding prose has been featured in The Salt Lake Tribune, Inlander, Las Vegas Weekly, SLUG Magazine, and many...

One reply on “True TV: ‘Eagleheart’ Returns; ‘Almost Human’ Premieres; ‘Ground Floor’ Sucks”

  1. I watched almost human… Unlike firefly and terminator TSCC, this Im sorry to say…. really really sucks. I don’t care who wrote,produced,starred or what in it. It is just bad, I watched and just saw every old hashed out scifi show/movie stolen to make a oatmeal like meal for the masses which tastes just like bland oatmeal. fox always kills the good shows for some reason to make crap like this, I predict this will not last a season unless fox just bankrolls it to force it down our throats. The tech on it is unimaginative also, very very lame. A child could have came up with better ideas for the bleek futuristic view of this nonvisionary .
    just reminds me of someone who steals other peoples things and repackages it, like getting a regift during xmas. no one wants it, and people just keep passing it along saying its good but they do not keep.

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