- Look Around You
A perfectly observed, lighthearted take on all those schools programmes we watched when we were small, accurate down to the timer that used to preceed each different programme on ITV/C4. Check out the skewed version of the periodic table on the BBC website.
I missed the first season of this, so the placing here is solely on what I have seen of the second series. Guns, explosions, and head-slicing. What more could you possibly need from an action series?
- Buffy The Vampire Slayer
The new season has an air of finality; everything seems to be pointing to an ending. And what an ending. So far, the current run is managing to surpass seasons two and three easily. A solid stretch of entertaining single-story episodes, plus the unfolding saga of the now customary season threat, the series is questioning things we've always believed to be true, and showing us glimpses into a larger story which makes us suspect even long-trusted characters. I can't wait until the Angel crossover later on in the season...
- The West Wing
It's never going to be as good as the first season, but The West Wing still manages to excite. The first few episodes of the new season were little more than Aaron Sorkin shouting "LOOK! This is how you should have played 2000!" to the Democrat Party, but were very entertaining (Josh and Toby should get stranded more often). After convincingly beating the ersatz George W. Bush, the theme of the series seems to be rather clear: Be Careful What You Wish For. They have everything they ever wanted now. And that's where things start falling apart. Again, the rest of the season should be very interesting.
Every now and then, you come across a certain type of person (the Internet in particular seems to be a gigantic strange attractor for them), who knows everything about a TV show. The show ran for about ten episodes on ATV during the summer of 1975, but they can freestyle on any element of its production history, storyline, or backroom politics for the best part of an evening. If you find yourself with one of these people, the correct approach is to nod your head approvingly, whilst at the same time backing away, desperately trying to attract somebody else's attention in order to escape. So just don't ask me about Firefly. Just take it from me that it was the best science-fiction programme on TV in the past decade, accept that the dialogue was unique, and nod approvingly when I curse the executives at Fox. It's for your own safety.