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SpoilerTV's Weekly Round Table: 17th Edition

Hello my dear STV community and welcome to a new edition of your/mine favorite round table. This week joining the RT besides me (MK) are Laura (LS), Lisa (LM), Donna (DC), Milo (MI), Samantha (SB) and Angela (AN). It was a slightly slow week but we still found some bones to pick, so sit back enjoy the read and if you are up to it join the discussion in the comment section down below.

1. The first week of Fall Tv is over. Which returning show left the best impression and which one sucked the life out of you?

LS: HTGAWM and B99 had immensely strong returns. Both kept the quality that we know and love and really honed in on some excellent dialogue and acting. The Good Place is also delivering some excellent work. I have yet to find a returning show that disappointed me. Though CEG is just around the corner…

LM: Scorpion sucked the life out of me. Outlander came back before last week, but still the best return so far for me.

DC: Greys anatomy still strong after all these years.

MI: The Good Doctor was probably the biggest surprise for me this week, a medical drama that I actually liked! Good characters, powerful and emotional, as well as being made with heart, it really won me over and I loved it. I also really dug The Exorcist's second season premiere, which really shined taking the show in a new direction with a great cast. Inhumans, on the other hand, was absolutely horrible and easily the worst show of the year so far that I've seen, never really taking off at all.

SB: Criminal Minds was great and at the same time disappointing. I loved the fact we got a Will/JJ scene and Emily was, in the end, the great BAMF we all know and love, but I cannot get past how badly they handled Damon Gupton's exit. He should've been given more notice, Stephen should've been developed better last year and Garcia's grief, the funeral & his wife's reaction just felt really hollow to me. Another show that's annoyed me in The Goldbergs. We are into the 5th season now. I do not care one iota for Barry's man pain. Or the rinse repeat storyline of people trying to help Barry, him being a jerk, them calling him out on his behavior, Barry doing his 'woe is me' crap, and then everyone feeling so bad they continue to let him treat them like crap until the next time. Barry very much works best in small doses, compared to when he's at the center of a storyline, and it really brings the episodes down.

For a positive, I am so glad that Speechless is back. It's my second favorite family comedy to The Goldbergs but has so much heart and superb actors + writers. The Good Place is also doing really well, and even if I haven't caught up yet, I'm still gonna say Brooklyn 99 because the show never disappoints & deserves more viewers than it has.

AN: I was pretty well satisfied with my favorite shows’ returns this week. “Criminal Minds” got off to an exciting, intense start, and I think there were some interesting setups being crafted in “How to Get Away with Murder”. I will say that the latter moved rather slow, which, while perhaps necessary for the purpose of the story, did take a bit of getting used to for a show that’s known for its fast pace. And while I’m intrigued by the events of the ending, I do have to wonder if it’ll have the same sort of impact previous mysteries have had on the fandom and viewers at large. But overall, both shows gave me some good moments to kick off their respective seasons, and I look forward to seeing how things play out.

MK: My personal favorite was Gotham's season 4 premiere. An amazing season opener which challenged the characters and entertained me as a viewer. Grey's also delivered a great premiere which really felt like old school GA. I even was able to watch most of Owen's scenes without an eye roll. As for disappointments, I wished HTGAWM tackled their stories a bit more forefront instead of just laying foundations. They still delivered a great outing, just could've been a bit better.

2. Will & Grace made a strong return after an 11 year long hiatus. What is the secret behind them succeeding to draw back their old audience? Was it nostalgia or quality?

LM: Will & Grace is succeeding because of nostalgia. Period.

DC: Will and Grace hit a topic that's of relevance with their same humor. The audience lapped it up and the witty one-liners delivered perfectly made it a welcome return.

SB: I'm gonna say a bit of both. Will & Grace is a show I was quite fond of as a kid. I watched the repeats over breakfast before school, and then the new episodes on the weekly basis. However, I stopped watching a season or 2 before it finished as it was starting to get stale. I know some won't agree, but I was very happy with the way they skated past the finale business. It never seemed realistic to me that Will & Grace would have such a massive feud they'd stop talking until their children got together in college or whatever that finale was. The humor was completely on point in the season opener, and some may have a go at the show for being too political, but that's what Will and Grace do. The chemistry between the cast was still just as good as 11 years ago, and while I'm not going to agree with every joke the show makes, I'd still consider it top form compared to some of the comedy offerings.

AN: I definitely think nostalgia was the biggest factor. This show was huge back in the day, and the fans love the chemistry between the cast, as well as the characters themselves. It’s always fun to check in with a group of characters you haven’t seen in a while and remember a simpler time in the TV world (and perhaps in general as well). There was also the obvious curiosity of seeing how they’d explain away the finale, too, which added to the intrigue.

Fortunately, the show managed to back up that nostalgic interest with some quality writing and jokes. The premiere did have a few bumps along the way, to be sure, but I feel there was enough of what made the show special the first time around to keep most fans invested.

MK: I think it was 70% nostalgia, 30% good promotion. The 4 leads were popping up all around social media and the return was a success. NBC really choose the right moment to bring it back. NBC has a strong game. Wonder if they'll go after Friends next?

3.Natasha McElhone moves on from Designated Survivor to do Hulu's The First. How should the show handle this type of exit? Is killing her of the only solution? And why do think she choose to move on from the show bad material or else?

LM: Personally, her storyline sucked so I don't blame her for leaving - but she was also annoying so I'm happy to see her go - but please no more of the children! I hope they get killed off too... oops! Was that my outside voice?

SB: I don't watch either show, but I am sick to death of characters being killed off. Especially because more times than not the death serves no other purpose than fueling man pain. So unless it's absolutely critical, have the characters divorce, or her as an off-screen wife. Plenty of shows do it. As to whether this move is due to the bad material or something else, that's information I don't think we'll be privy to. My mum has watched Madam Secretary since it started & after watching the pilot of Designated Survivor, she described it as a male version of Madam Secretary, a comparison I've seen a number of people make as the shows are very similar in nature but concentrating on different aspects. I saw Natasha in a couple of episodes of Californication & of course The Truman Show and she is a very good actress, and whilst it doesn't sound particularly revolutionary, it could be that the cast & producers involved in The First were simply too good an opportunity for her to turn down.

MK: I'm a fan of Natasha and she drew me more to the show than Kiether. But besides the occasional highlight, her story was very poor. As Lisa said no wonder she left. There was a lot more space for her to tell her angle and tell the real struggle and make the show more relatable. The writers went for the big mystery what didn't really pay off in my opinion. As for the solution for her exit, I hope it isn't death especially considering the current situation on broadcast TV, the writers just have to dig a bit deeper to find a good solution.

That's the wrap guys. I hope you've enjoyed the edition and share your thoughts in the comment section. Till we meet again next week ;-)

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