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The 2012-2013 Fourteenth Annual TV BiteMes


tv-bites_thumbTV Bites


The 2012-2013
Fourteenth Annual TV BiteMes

by Neena Louise

Worst Actress
Jennifer Coolidge, “Sophie Kachinsky”, 2 Broke Girls
Coolidge – whom I actually like very much from her previous roles – is not doing herself any favors by playing the over-sexed, poorly-accented “Sophie”. Didn’t help that the audience would hoot and cheer every time she showed up [roll eyes here].

Best Actress
Melissa McCarthy, “Molly Flynn”, Mike & Molly
With all the other characters quickly becoming cartoonish, McCarthy’s “Molly” gave the show a reason to come back week after week.

Most Overrated Female
Mindy Kaling, “Mindy Lahiri”, The Mindy Project
Kaling is very good in Project – as she was in The Office – but not as fantabulously glorious as so many would have you to believe.

Most Overlooked Female
Toks Olagundoye, “Jackie Joyner-Kersee”, The Neighbors
I don’t understand all the bad press Neighbors gets. It’s not nearly as gimmicky and tired as everyone says; it’s actually a fun little show. Olagundoye plays “Jackie” perfectly, blending wide-eyed innocence with intelligent strength. Worth a watch.

Worst Actor
Charles Esten, “Deacon Claybourne”, Nashville
Handsome and puppy-dog-eyed does not an actor make. It was hard to tell if it was his perma-pissed-off character or Esten as an actor, but both got boring very quickly.

Best Actor
Michael Emerson, “Harold Finch”, Person of Interest
Emerson’s portrayal of “Finch” was perfection and the best thing about this stellar series.

Most Overrated Male
Josh Charles, “Will Gardner”, The Good Wife
Charles’ stone-faced portrayal of “Will” gets more boring – and just plain bad – with every passing season. He needs to go.

Most Overlooked Male
Kevin Chapman, “Lionel Fusco”, Person of Interest
Though it seems he was cast as a comic-relief and/or filler character, Chapman’s “Fusco” deserved much more.

Worst-Dressed Female
“Sophie Kachinsky”, Jennifer Coolidge, 2 Broke Girls
Yes, she’s the show’s resident sexpot, but that doesn’t mean she has to dress like a clown.

Best-Dressed Female
“Alex Kerkovich”, Elisha Cuthbert, Happy Endings
It’s no secret that I hated the thankfully-now-cancelled Happy Endings, but “Alex” was always dressed perfectly: slumming it or all gussied up, she looked great.

Worst-Dressed Male
“John Reese”, Jim Caviezel, Person of Interest
Enough with the stupid suit all the time. Doesn’t he own anything else? Time to hire a stylist.

Best-Dressed Male
“Eli Gold”, Alan Cumming, The Good Wife
Though every man in Wife was dressed pretty darned well, “Eli” carried off the “suit look” the best.

Worst TV Mom
“Regina Mills”, Lana Parilla, Once Upon a Time
Yes, she’s the Evil Queen, but “Regina” kept pretending her life revolved around her adopted son, then proceeded to plot against him and everyone that was important to him. Hardly Mother-of-the-Year material.

Best TV Mom
“Frankie Heck”, Patricia Heaton, The Middle
A normal flawed mother in so many ways, “Frankie” often forgot her kids ( or wanted to forget them), yet still came across as a good mother.

Worst TV Dad
“Teddy Conrad”, Eric Close, Nashville
Only wanted what he wanted when he wanted it. To hell with his wife and daughters – and everyone else for that matter.

Best TV Dad
“Rick Castle”, Nathan Fillion, Castle
Always let his now-grown kid be herself. Didn’t hurt that she was unnaturally angelic, but still…

Worst TV Kid
“Lily Tucker-Pritchett”. Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, Modern Family
“Lily” went from a super-mellow baby (played by Ella and Jaden Hiller for the first two seasons), to a rude superbrat.

Best TV Kid
“Shania Clemmons”, Bebe Wood, The New Normal
It’s always so refreshing to see the portrayal of a normal kid on TV: neither angel nor hellion, “Shania” was the perfect blend of both.

Least Likable Character on a Show
“Juliette Barnes”, Hayden Panettiere, Nashville
Though Panettiere portrayed the epitome of spoiled obnoxious diva very well, watching “Juliette” was, at times, very uncomfortable. Maybe that was the idea?

Most Likable Character on a Show
“Skip Gilchrist”, Josh Gad, 1600 Penn
The resident Bumbling Fool, “Skip” was always so earnest and well-meaning you couldn’t help but like him. Not enough to save the show, though.

Worst Drama
666 Park Avenue
Trying to cash in on the success of FX’s American Horror Story, this silly supposed horror show about a creepy apartment building was an insult to the horror genre. Its prompt cancellation proved it.

Best Drama
Person of Interest
Despite the tiresome “Man in the Suit” (see “Worst-Dressed Male”), this still-fresh drama kept me coming back for more.

Worst Sitcom
The 1980s called and wanted their sitcom back, so this was swiftly cancelled.

Best Sitcom
The Big Bang Theory
Hard to believe this is still worth watching, let alone still funny and fresh 6 seasons in.

Worst SciFi
See “Most Overrated Series”.

Best SciFi
With so little SciFi remaining on broadcast network TV, at least Grimm managed not to kill itself off by getting bogged down with boring backstory.

Worst Animated Series
The Cleveland Show
Though its future is unclear at the time of writing, it’s hard to believe this cringeworthy crap lasted even four seasons.

Best Animated Series
The Simpsons
will start its 25th season in the fall – reason enough to be designated “the best”. I’ve never cared for it much, but I understand its appeal.

Most Overrated Series
Given all the hype, I tried my best to watch this series, but by the 4th or 5th episode, I just couldn’t take it anymore and found myself groaning at the silly dialogue and thinking “oh, whatever…just get on with it already.” Especially stupid and laughable was the numerous attempts to rescue “Danny” (Graham Rogers) which just missed. Kinda like the series.

Most Overlooked Series
Guys with Kids
I rather enjoyed this little sitcom and was surprised it got cancelled. Especially surprising when crap like Happy Endings kept getting renewed.

Worst Writing
Blue Bloods

Cliché after cliché after cliché…it got so eye-rollingly laughable, it went from my “must watch” list to my “hell no” list.

Best Writing

The Big Bang Theory
You’d think the writers would be out of material by now, but Bang still delivered week after week.

Worst Host/Narrator
Donald Trump, Celebrity Apprentice
Not only has Apprentice (not to mention Trump’s hair) become very stale, when Trump declared how much he liked his “good friend” Evil Personified (Omorosa Manigault), I lost what little respect I had for him.

Best Host/Narrator
Tom Bergeron, Dancing with the Stars
He made an often dorky show funny with his quick-witted – often times acerbic – comments.

Worst Newscaster/Reporter
Matt Lauer, Today
Not only was he voted “Least Trusted News Anchor” in a recent Reader’s Digest poll, his behavior during – not to mention before and after – Ann Curry’s departure was reprehensible.

Best Newscaster/Reporter
Pete Williams, NBC
His reports on the Boston Marathon bombing showed his competence as took his time to, well, do his job by confirming information before jumping to conclusions and falling into the over-hyped hysterics trap so many others got caught in. Are you listening, CNN? You should be.

Worst News Magazine
Rock Center with Brian Williams
The numerous schedule changes couldn’t save this snorefest.

Best News Magazine
60 Minutes
45 years and counting. Mind-boggling.

Worst Reality Show Series
Extreme Weight Loss
Though host Chris Powell was very likeable, well-meaning and seemed to truly care, I found the “fatpoiltation” very distasteful. The initial weigh-in was always done on a loading dock using an industrial freight scale with the participant in their underwear and Powell seriously intoning “they don’t have scales that go up to your weight”. Oh, really? My cheap-o 20-year-old plastic bathroom scale goes up to 350 lbs. My GP’s scale goes up to 450 lbs. What kind of “wellness center” has such crappy scales? It never seemed to be a problem later in the show, though, when a portable scale that went well past 300 lbs miraculously appeared. I’m sure a lot of people feel they don’t deserve respect since it’s their own fault that they’re so large (and it is their fault, regardless of what they claim), but at least they knew they had a problem and reached out for help. They should’ve been given props for it instead of being further humiliated on national television.

Best Reality Show Series
Does Someone Have to Go?
A true anomaly in reality TV: an original premise that didn’t totally suck. The employees of a dysfunctional company got to be the “boss”, discovered what everyone else earned and who said what about them behind their backs, then decided their coworkers’ futures. Throw in CEOs that did things like paid their relatives more than anyone else or used security cameras to spy on their employees, and this turned out to be a voyeuristic guilty pleasure.

Worst Reality Game/Contest
Hell’s Kitchen
Kitchen really showed its age this season and became plain old “whatever”. It’s just a lot of Gordon Ramsay shrieking, cursing and throwing things around like a spoiled toddler pitching a hissy fit. Same old, same old. Toss in the universally unlikable contestants and numerous 2-part episodes, and it quickly became a show to avoid.

Best Reality Game/Contest
The Amazing Race
Twelve years, 22 cycles and 14 Emmy wins. No other can touch it.

Worst Reality Villain
Omorosa Manigault, Celebrity Apprentice
She’s the villain everyone supposedly loved to hate, but I just hated her. She’s one of the most vile human beings in existence and I don’t believe for a second it was just an act to make for good television. I know they probably just had her on to improve Apprentice‘s flagging ratings since she’s not a celebrity in any sense of the word (except maybe in her own deluded mind), but in my case it failed spectacularly: I stopped watching.

Best Reality Villain
Conda Britt, The Biggest Loser
Bully, troublemaker and incessant complainer, the hateful Britt had fans of the show petitioning to have her booted. A ratings coup for the flagging NBC!

Worst Game Show
Bet on Your Baby
Seriously? How lame can a game show get? Melissa Peterman was a great host, but not good enough to make this silly show worth watching.

Best Game Show
Family Feud
Feud takes it from Jeopardy for the first time ever. Though Feud could be characterized as witless nonsense, host Steve Harvey is probably the best host it’s ever had, making it the primary – nay, the only – reason to watch. Meanwhile on Jeopardy, host Alex Trebek is getting more and more obnoxious with every passing season. Time to retire, Alex.

Worst Score


I don’t think I can stand one more horrid cover song.

Best Score
I’m not much of a country music fan, but I enjoyed the music on Nashville very much.

Worst Theme Music
Parks and Recreation
Am I the only one that thought “let’s all polka!” whenever I heard this stupid ditty?

Best Theme Music
Hawaii Five-0
An excellent update of the iconic Five-0 theme.

Worst Newcomer (that hasn’t been cancelled)
Chicago Fire
With its collection of universally-unlikable characters, watching this was just plain uncomfortable. Firefighters are heroes, they shouldn’t be portrayed as obnoxious anger-management candidates.

Best Newcomer (that hasn’t been cancelled)
Tough choice with the bloodbath of cancellations this season, but Elementary takes it for being at least mildly diverting.

Biggest Decline in Quality
Touch started off so promising with the autistic “Jake” finding patterns in numbers and helping everyday people. It quickly deteriorated into silly evil-corporation-vs-innocent-children nonsense and lost itself, leading to its cancellation. A shame.

Most Improved in Quality
For the first time, there wasn’t a single show that improved this season. Most just managed to hang onto themselves.

Worst Networks (tie)
NBC and Fox
NBC has been at the bottom for several years now, but this year they went from No. 1 in the first 3 months of the season, to dead last by the end of it – even Univision beat it! As for Fox, last year’s “Best Network”, it was number 1 for something like 8 years in a row, but the enormous decline in American Idol ratings and lackluster X Factor ratings indicates that Fox needs to get out of the talent show business in order to save itself. With an explosion of cable networks and streaming services like Netflix, broadcast networks have to either try harder to give viewers what they want, or simply fold up and go away.

Best Network
Takes it in the Big Four ratings battle. Not much, but it’s something anyway.

Worst Commercial
Chanel No. 5
All I could think was “WTF?!?” as Brad Pitt over-emotively recited what seemed to be spectacularly bad poetry. Or something. Just all kinds of wrong.

Best Commercial
RONA Olympic Relay
Though this epic 90-second “Olympic relay” across Canada to deliver a screwdriver only ran on Canadian television during the 2012 Summer Olympics, it simply outshone any other. Unfortunately, RONA removed it from their YouTube channel and it’s only available in French (Spoiler Alert: translation of the last – and only – line: “Thanks. Got a hammer?”):

The making-of video is almost as entertaining:

Biggest Stinker of the Season

Family Tools
Very aptly named: it was a family of tools.

Trend of the Year
To Be Continued…
Who doesn’t hate those 3 dreaded words at the end of an episode? So many shows did it this season, it started to irritate me to the point that, in protest, I didn’t bother watching the 2nd part. If I knew ahead of time, I didn’t bother watching Part 1, knowing they’d recap it at the beginning of Part 2 anyway. Especially ridiculous was the numerous Hell’s Kitchen episodes that continued. Did they seriously think they’d force people back to a tired reality series by doing that? After the second “to be continued”, I started watching only the first and last 3 or 4 minutes. After the fourth, I stopped watching altogether because I realized something: I just didn’t care. The only show I admired was Grimm. At the end of the last episode before a hiatus came the dreaded “to be continued” followed by “sorry”. Even better was its season-ender which, after “to be continued”, was “Oh, come on. You knew it was coming.” At least they understand.

Least Magical Moment
“Castle” proposing to “Kate”, Castle
“Rick Castle” (Nathan Fillion) proposing to “Kate Beckett” (Stana Katic) had me making retching noises, shouting “gag me!” at the TV. I hope she says no, then runs away. For good.

Most Magical Moment
“Raj” speaking his first sober words to a girl, The Big Bang Theory
After 6 seasons, “Raj Koothrappali” (Kunal Nayyar) finally had a breakthrough and managed to speak to a girl (“Penny”, Kaley Cuoco) without benefit of alcohol. Who didn’t want to cheer for him?

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