Sunday, October 28, 2007

AUGH the Veronica Mars FBI "pilot"

So earlier this year, when Veronica Mars was teetering on the bubble of cancellation, there was this rumbling that if the show returned for a fourth season, they would skip ahead 5 years or so and make Veronica an FBI agent. I didn't really like this idea. But apparently they actually shot a "trailer" for this reworked version, and it got released on the season 3 DVD (which I've ordered but haven't received yet).

But of course it's on youtube.

Part 2 is here.

And man, this is an unpopular opinion, but I am SO GLAD that they didn't go ahead with this version. I know Kristen Bell is in her late twenties in real life, but after 3 years of Veronica the teenager it's just too much of a mind jump to think of her as a real FBI agent. And of course they have her go undercover at a high school, which makes it even more confusing. It's just too weird! And for the life of me I don't know how this was supposed to attract new viewers. It cuts out the backstory of the first three seasons I suppose but I don't know, teen detective sounds a lot cooler than snarky FBI agent.

I've had my peace with Veronica Mars being over, so man, it was really weird watching this. But it really just made me miss the old Veronica Mars of like, first season. And Logan. Augh, I miss Logan! Haha, yes, I am pathetic.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Summer season finales

I know, I know, it's fall now (and the weather is finally agreeing with the calendar here in the Northeast) but two really awesome series that ran this summer recently had their season finales. It's funny, summer series never used to be a big thing at all, but with the cable networks producing their own original series and not adhering to the regular broadcast seasons, things have gotten a lot more interesting. These two shows, Damages and Mad Men each had 13-episode freshman seasons and they were both just phenomenal in their own way, really way better than any of the new fall shows, in my opinion. Looking at my TV schedule this fall, I have a mix of quirkiness, guilty pleasures, and geeks of all kinds but not too much of what Damages and Mad Men were: thinking shows for grownups.

Let's talk about Mad Men's big finale twist first: Peggy hasn't just been gaining weight, she was pregnant. And she gave birth. And seemingly rejected her baby. Pretty much all in the last couple of minutes of the show. WTF? It was definitely a shocker, and a lot of people have been buzzing about how that just strains the credibility of the show. And I'd really been liking Peggy, as she rose in the ranks from secretary to junior copywriter based on her talent. It's just so bizarre that they went in this direction. I can't speak firsthand, but it seems to me that gaining weight because you're pregnant is entirely different from just plain gaining weight. And I mean, was she so clueless that she didn't realize she wasn't having her period? She didn't feel kicks? Or was she in colossal denial? The writers have got some serious explaining to do.

But outside of that, the episode (and entire season really) have just been excellent. Jon Hamm, who I don't recognize from anywhere really, has been so incredibly good as Don, and I've loved the slow reveal of his past. Betty's storyline has been a roller coaster too...she has this weird sort of creepy quality about her that makes her and Don the craziest couple on TV that I'm actually rooting for. Don's slideshow presentation with all the photos of his family really got me a bit misty. And how sad was it when he got home and saw that they had already left? It's weird, this slick, composed guy whose whole life is kind of a lie and who cheats on his wife...I'm totally sympathetic with him.

There's tons more to say but I really encourage everyone to go and check out this show before it returns for a second season. The time period is almost a character in itself, and it's really unlike anything else on TV.

Now onto Damages. Talk about a show that knows how to plot! The show had two timelines that were inching closer to eachother as the episodes progressed, and it was just really thrilling, with all the twists and red herrings and mini-mysteries. It's been really unpredictable and exciting, but not to the point where unbelievable things are happening. It's kind of hard to sum up the entire season, but it's been an incredible ride.

And things have been kind of set up for a second season, though it seems it'll have to be a very different kind of show. I originally thought this was going to be an extended mini-series of sorts, with only one season, but there have been rumblings otherwise. This season has been very tightly structured and plotted, revolving around the Frobisher case. Ellen's whole induction into Patty's world was really based solely on her connection to Katie and the case. But now with the case wrapped up, Frobisher presumably dead (shot down by crazy was that?)...we're going to be delving into Ellen working undercover for the FBI to find out more about Patty? The writers are definitely going to have to come up with more than that. And I'm a bit skeptical. Patty's a really great character and Glenn Close is amazing and I'm sure there's tons that can be done with her, but I don't know if I necessarily want more. Again, it's the whole thing with letting a story end where it ends logically. I mean, some shows just aren't meant to go on indefinitely...right?

all the medical shows jennifer doesn't watch.. :)

I figured I'm long overdue an update, but Jenn has done such a thorough job in covering Fall TV, really all I could possibly write about are, well, the shows she DOESN'T watch. :)

Grey's Anatomy - This season is nowhere near as terrible as last season was, but it's still not all that interesting. When will they learn that Meredith and Derek are just not that interesting of a couple and leave their storyline alone. They're far less annoying when they're happy and together, so just let them be! I don't know how many more Meredith-Derek breakups I can sit through. I like the addition of Lexie Grey, because I like the actress from her Reunion days (though I only liked the high school version of her character), but everything else is just sorta the same old stuff.

Private Practice - Terrible. Well, I'm giving a few more episodes a shot. Mostly I'm rooting for Judging Amy's Amy (the Psychiatrist) and Prison Break's Secret-Service-Agent-with-a-conscience man (the Pediatrician) to get together. I have no idea, nor do I care to remember, what their names are, if that's any indication of how much I do not particularly like this show.

House - Hands down the best medical show on TV right now -- if not ever! At least IMHO. I adore Hugh Laurie as much as ever, but mostly I love the new season's gimmick. All of House's assistants were fired/quit at the end of last season, so now he is eliminating "potential" assistants from a class of 100 or so applicants every week. I also enjoy how Cameron, Chase, and Foreman continue to be mixed into the storyline even though they're definitely not working under House anymore.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A couple of stragglers: Life is Wild, Samantha Who and the Next Iron Chef

Life is Wild - When I first heard about this show I wondered how it could possibly have the budget to set up filming on location in South Africa with actual animals and how they managed to get all these American actors to ship over there. It seemed a whole huge production for something that didn't even sound that great. But apparently it's based on a popular British TV show called Wild at Heart that pretty much had everything set up so both shows film at the same site, which really is a game preserve. So if it gets'll still suck but hey, at least the British version is doing well.

Anyway, the show's not really too bad. I think it's supposed to be the CW's replacement for 7th Heaven: a nice clean family show, this time with beautiful scenery and wild animals. The writing and acting is kind of terrible, but I mean, it's not really aiming to be groundbreaking or anything. 7th Heaven lasted for 11 freaking seasons without doing anything the least bit interesting and I think they're hoping this show could possibly do the same. Except for the fact that the family is only supposed to be in South Africa for one year, and the two older kids are nearly done with high school. Um...yeah. They'll have to do something about that.

After watching the pilot I thought I would probably just drop it but there's really nothing else to watch in its timeslot (Sundays at 8PM) so I found myself checking it out again this week, and I don't know, it's just kind of mindlessly entertaining. And that lion cub is so cute!

Samantha Who? - Amnesia's a pretty tried and true TV/film plot device but for some reason watching this show made me really wonder about it for the first time. I mean, retrograde amnesia? How weird is that? Having "general knowledge" but no memories or sense of yourself? At first I thought that Sam was being way too casual about it all but then I realized that I mean, obviously I don't know how I'd behave in that situation anyway. It's so WEIRD! Haha, anyway, I thought this was pretty cute and fun. It reminded me a lot of 13 Going on 30, which I love. I was surprised to see Barry Watson here, and even more surprised to kind of like him. I've found it difficult to block out his 7th Heaven days but I think he kind of looks different now. Has he lost weight or something? Christina Applegate is likable, Jean Smart is hilarious as her mom, and Melissa McCarthy (Sookie from Gilmore Girls!) and Jennifer Esposito (from I the only one who watched that show?) play her "angel and devil" friends. It's fun stuff.

The Next Iron Chef - Alton Brown did some interviews kind of slamming Top Chef saying that the chefs on that show didn't have any skill or talent as compared to this new show that he's hosting. I've always liked Alton Brown, but that was really extremely harsh, considering that a lot of the Top Chef contestants lately own restaurants or work at places like Guy Savoy. And really, Top Chef is a serious show. The drama might be kind of overblown at times, but the Next Iron Chef is...kind of hokey. I mean, if you've watched Iron Chef America, you know what I mean with the Chairman and all the faux dramatics with the "secret ingredient" and all. It's all part of the fun, which I enjoy, but really Alton, no need to be so nasty.

Anyway, I love my cooking reality shows and this is no different. It's a short series, having only started with 8 chefs, and the challenges are really good. This week was a mystery-box-type challenge, but the fun was that they got to choose ingredients for eachother. And they had to cook outdoors on grills, so a double whammy. I can't really say I have a favorite...being an Iron Chef doesn't necessarily mean you need to have personality, and honestly, I think all these people would do just fine. I remember seeing Aaron Sanchez as a challenger on ICA, and he did extremely well. I guess they're just looking for something who'll have a winning record and be interesting to watch?

On a related note, during the show last night I saw a commercial for Amy's new show, the Gourmet Next Door. It has some random weekend daytime slot, but I'll definitely be checking it out. I did vote for her and all...

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Checking in with the new fall shows

I've been swamped with work and school these past couple of weeks, and with a week or more of TV backed up on my DVR, it's interesting to see which of the new shows I find myself wanting to watch first. So far, there have only been two shows that I've been watching live or almost immediately (Gossip Girl and Pushing Daisies), a couple more that I've been genuinely enjoying, and the rest are either still on trial or I've already given up. Here's the rundown, from best to worst:

1. Gossip Girl: I can't help it, I LOVE this show. Blair and Serena are just so perfectly cast and are really believable as those best friends that really are close but find themselves alternately warring and hugging. Also really loving Dan and Jenny and even boring Nate and jerky Chuck are watchable. The little romance with Dan and Serena has been cute, but I'm not getting too least based on the books, though I don't know how closely they're going to following them. I'm totally addicted.

2. Pushing Daisies: I actually didn't really like the second episode...I thought the whole dandelion car thing was just too much and it all looked a little too Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. But this week's episode really won me over. The Ned-Chuck romance is so sweet and I love all the funny ways they're getting around the touching thing: holding hands with gloves, kissing through plastic wrap...I'm also glad that Ned came clean with Chuck about some of the details of his power. I was a bit worried they'd drag that out too long, though of course he's still yet to tell her about her father. I figure that's a sweeps type storyline. I'm also totally loving Emerson Cod. He knits! And the Pooh thing from this week was genius. Chi McBride's done a lot of dramatic stuff and I never expected him to be so funny, but he's really stealing a lot of scenes here.

3. Kid Nation: Um yeah. I don't think it's really getting good ratings at all but for some reason I just really love this show. Obviously I'm susceptible to getting hooked on reality but I find it to be really entertaining. A lot of it is extremely contrived but the kids are an interesting mix...much more diverse than any other reality show.

4. Dirty Sexy Money: I think what I like about this show is that every character was introduced really well. All the wild and crazy things rich people do are really entertaining, and Peter Krause does a great job keeping it down to earth a bit. There's a little bit of a mystery going on too. It's just really a lot of fun and I hope they keep it up.

5. Aliens in America: The only sitcom on my list (though I've yet to check out Samantha Who? about which I've heard some good things). It's short, sweet, and satisfying, and all the characters are really likable.

6. Reaper: This is where things start to get a little questionable. I did think the pilot was funny but the next couple of episodes had me a little bored, and honestly, they kind of remind of all the bad episodes of Buffy. I mean, even the bad episodes of Buffy had good things about them, and it's the same here, but...yeah. They're still kind of bad. Sock continues to amuse, Sam's pretty easy to root for, and Ray Wise as the Devil is perfect, but I wonder if maybe they need a little bit more of an ongoing storyline.

7. Chuck: I'm a couple of weeks behind with this one, and maybe it's gotten better but I kind of it's just a little too silly at times. And I don't know, Chuck just seems a little too Seth Cohen 2.0 for me. I guess his dorkiness is kind of endearing but I found myself thinking he was just lame a lot of the time. Adam Baldwin is pretty hilarious though. It's not all working for me yet but I'm willing to give it a few more weeks.

8. Journeyman: Really makes absolutely no sense but I kind of like Dan, the main character. I'm kind of afraid to get too into though because it sort of seems doomed for early cancellation.

9. Bionic Woman: I want to like this show, I really do, but it's just so heavy and humorless. And Jamie still has no personality. I guess it's the butt-kicking babe thing but I can't help comparing Jamie to Sydney Bristow. Sydney might have gotten a little cold as the series progressed, but she kind of instantly made you care about her. Jamie's just...blah. I'm still liking Sarah Corvus and Jae though. Oh, but was I like not paying attention during the pilot and Will is already dead? That's maybe a plus because I thought he was annoying. I'm trying to stick it out, really, but it's getting tough.

Off the DVR: Moonlight (boring), Cane (boring), Private Practice (bad/uninteresting), K-Ville (uninterested), Life (boring), Big Bang Theory (uninterested), Big Shots (stupid).

Sophomore slumping?

A bunch of the shows I'm watching are in their second seasons now, and that brings up the question, are they facing the sophomore slump? Here's my verdict so far:

Heroes: Definitely slumping. I think part of what was exciting about last season was that we were just meeting these characters in their separate worlds and there was this anticipation of their storylines converging and everyone meeting up. But now everyone's separated again and I don't get a sense of where things are going at all. Some of the stories still interest me, like Claire and her flying boy, West, and I'm actually liking Micah and his peppy cousin Monica. And thank goodness Mohinder and Matt and Molly in New York are actually doing something productive.

But Hiro? The thing with Kensei was amusing for maybe one episode but why are they dragging it out? And Peter in Ireland? Milo Ventimiglia does look kind of hot in all those shirtless scenes, but the whole memory loss thing is so not working for me. And I KNEW he wasn't going to want to open the box. Stupid Peter. And finally, our two new heroes, Maya and Alejandro...after watching them on the run for three episodes and having basically nothing happen to make us want to care about them, they run into Sylar. Whom, by the way, I despise. Yeah, he's the bad guy and I'm supposed to hate him, but bad guys should be entertaining to watch in some respect, and for me, he's just not. I don't want to watch him. I DON'T.

So...yeah. I mean, even last season I didn't think Heroes was as great as people hyped it up to be, but it more than held my attention. So far this season I've just been kind of bored. The promos are hyping Kristen Bell joining the cast in next week's episode but I don't know that I'm necessarily excited about that. Obviously I was a huge fan of Veronica Mars but I get the feeling her character is one of those smartass sarcastic chicks that I usually find kind of grating. We'll see...

Friday Night Lights: Umm...I hate to say this, but I'm worried. Things just aren't right with Coach Taylor not in Dillon with the Panthers. I know that this shakeup with pretty much every character is intentional but I can't say that I've been really enjoying it. I'm especially not enjoying the fracturing of what last season was one of the best families on the TV (the Taylors) and the end of my favorite couple from last season, Matt and Julie. I mean, when the scenes I enjoy the most involve Buddy Garrity of all people, something's got to be wrong. It looks like Eric will be back in Dillon pretty soon, but he's going to have an uphill battle getting things back to normal both at home and on the field.

Let's start with Julie. In my review of the premiere, I said that I was kind of okay with her and Matt breaking up and exploring other things, but I didn't want them to make her too unlikeable. But it's happened. I mean, even outside of her love life, she's just being HORRIBLE to her mother. Last night when she told Tami "your baby's crying" I pretty much wanted to kill her. And even though Tami slapping her was probably a little over the line, I'm kind of glad she did. I really hope this little rebellious stage of Julie's is going over soon because if it keeps going then she's not even deserve to have Matt back (assuming that's the plan...which I suppose it might not be). Although I don't know about Matt either now. I thought it was so cute how he was apologizing to Coach about the breakup when none of it was really his fault and Coach didn't even know about it, but then I'm really afraid of where they're going with him and Carlotta. What is up with these Dillon Panthers and older women??

I mean, it's not all bad. I was worried about the Landry-Tyra thing but oddly enough that's really been the least of the show's problems. I liked how Landry's father reacted in this week's episode. I thought he was going to confront Landry in some cliched TV parent way but instead he goes to see Tyra and asks why she's into his son. (BTW, Glenn Morshower aka Agent Pierce from 24, is so the perfect casting for Landry's dad...LOVE him!) Somehow I'm actually finding the Landry/Tyra dynamic to be pretty believable, but I kind of miss the old goofy Landry.

I don't know, I'm hoping that once Coach Taylor is back with the Panthers things will seem more right again, but that really remains to be seen. I want so badly for the show to continuing being as awesome as it was last season, but maybe my expectations are a little too high?

Ugly Betty: Definitely NOT slumping. I really consistently enjoyed this show last season although I never really blogged about it. But this season so far has just been AWESOME. There was a bit too much melodrama in the first episode for my taste but things since then have been back to all crazy wacky fun. This week's episode had a ton of incredible guest stars, including my favorite SpyDaddy Victor Garber as Betty's snobby writing teacher, John Cho as Henry's fellow accountant, and James Van Der Beek as one of Mode's top advertisers. Yes, James Van Der Beek. As you may know, I have this bizarre love/hate thing with Dawson's Creek but the sight of Dawson Leery himself cracked me up.

Also beyond awesome this season is Justin. First he's all fashion elf-y at Mode, then he asks Daniel to play basketball with him (totally classic), and now he's trying to be Santos, complete with sullen attitude, beer, and making out with a Queens girl! (I'm actually from Queens, but you can't really get offended by the stereotypes on this show.) And...Ugly Willy! And Alexis waking up from the coma not knowing she's a woman now! And Amanda and Marc! And Henry! I LOVE THIS SHOW!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Friday Night on Fridays!

I actually watched this episode a week ago on Yahoo!TV but I decided to hold off on blogging about it until it actually aired so I could go more into detail about some of the stuff that happened...if you've watched the show then you probably know what I'm referring to by this point. But I'll get to that a little later.

It's weird, I absolutely loved the show last season and was thrilled when it was renewed but at the same time, I felt like last season's story was so nicely self-contained with a nice beginning, middle, and end...and I was strangely unprepared to be dropped into it all again, especially since what, 8 months have passed, and things are definitely not as we left them.

Coach Taylor has indeed been living and working in Austin, and I don't know, in the finale they managed to convince me that it was going to somehow be okay but now it just seems like a colossally bad situation. I mean, being away for weeks at a time pretty much the whole time your wife is pregnant? And then with a newborn? I think they'll be dealing with it all a bit more in the upcoming episodes but I wonder how a good resolution can come of it all. Obviously the sentimental solution would be to have Coach Taylor back with the Panthers, that's how we grew to love him after all, but in terms of his character, that just seems like it would be a step down. I hope the writers haven't dug themselves into a hole here.

Also a lot unhappier than we last left them are Matt and Julie. Now, I'm not going to lie, I LOVED Matt and Julie together and would prefer that they be kind of left alone but I realize that's not realistic. And I sort of get why Julie's acting out...they are only 16 after all. It's the whole perfect couple syndrome. She was lucky enough to have kind of the perfect first high school relationship but she doesn't really want that to be IT for the rest of her life. I'm guessing they're going to be breaking up and seeing other people for awhile, but I really do hope they end up together in the long run. And that their characters don't become too unlikable in the process. Julie was being pretty insufferable this episode. (Sigh, the shipper in me is missing all the cute Matt/Julie scenes from last season...good thing I now have the DVDs so I can go back and be nostalgic.)

In other news, Lyla seems to have turned into one of those annoying Christians who's always telling everybody that they need to be saved. Now, I'm a Christian, but I can't stand people who act like that, and I don't know, maybe it's the acting, but it definitely strikes me as being pretty fake. I was starting to maybe like Lyla a little bit at the end of last season but now we're back at square one. Or square minus one.

Okay, so finally we get to Landry and Tyra. As unlikely as they were and still are, I was happy to see that they stayed friends, and it totally made me laugh that after 8 months, Landry was STILL trying to make his first move. But man, having her attacker come back? And Landry accidentally killing him? And dumping the body? This just seems like it's out of another world. This makes me worried. I do have faith in the writers to take what seems like a cliched bad teen movie plot and elevate it but I hope I'm not going to wish they never went there in the first place.

Pushing Daisies!

When I first heard about this show I was a little afraid that it was going to be one of those quirky but brilliant shows that gets canceled prematurely because it never quite finds the right audience, like Bryan Fuller's last show, Wonderfalls (which I really need to blog about's beyond awesome). Usually I blame these kinds of situations on the networks. But this time around, I'm happy to say that ABC has done an extremely good job promoting the show. In the Philadelphia area where I live I've been seeing ads for it on buses for weeks now and on Wednesday, I was walking to class in University City and there were people on the street handing out daisies with little tags advertising the premiere that night! So cute!

And cute really is an operative word here when describing the show. The look of the show is quite different...the only thing I can think of comparing it to is Big Fish. And it is sort of fairy-tale-ish, thanks in part to the narration by Jim Dale, who does the Harry Potter audio books. Lee Pace plays our protagonist, Ned, the lonely pie maker with the strange gift, and I love him! I loved him back on Wonderfalls and I'm so glad he's leading his own show now. Anna Friel, yet another British import, plays Chuck, his childhood sweetheart. I really like her too...I just recently saw her in Our Mutual Friend (a BBC miniseries...yes, I'm still obsessed with those) and despite initial misgivings, she really won me over. Also in the cast are Kristin Chenoweth, who's SO TINY next to Lee Pace (though I guess I'm not one to talk...I'm probably only a inch or so taller than her), Swoosie Kurtz and Ellen Greene as Chuck's aunts, and Chi McBride (bouncing back from last season's doomed The Nine) as a private detective and Ned's "business partner." I really like that the cast is more varied and not just a bunch of pretty people like a lot of the other new shows this season.

I don't really want to recap the episode since I really encourage everyone to go watch it themselves, but there's a really sweet but kind of doomed romance, lots of quirky characters and details (uh, honey for the homeless?), and enough of a procedural element that will give the show structure but not overwhelm it. I do already have some questions about Ned's "gift" but I'll hold off to muse on them since well, it's only one episode.

So definitely yes to Pushing Daisies. I'm eagerly awaiting upcoming episodes, and I hope you all will check it out too!

Friday, October 05, 2007

And the new Top Chef is...


I'm totally okay with this outcome. I think I might have been a little more excited if Dale or Casey won, but it's not that I disliked Hung at all. And being really all about the food, Hung definitely deserved the win. Congrats to him.

There were a bunch of changes to this year's finale, and I thought they really were for the better. First of all, they revealed the winner live, presumably because of last season's Food and Wine website debaucle where the winner was spoiled before the finale aired. It was very Survivor-Apprentice-esque, though thankfully we weren't subjected to boring clip show recaps or interviews with family members. I imagine they'll be keeping it that way. The other changes involved the final challenge itself. For one, all the chefs would be serving their courses at the same time. I think there are advantages and disadvantages to this. While it allows for more direct comparison, I imagine it would be a little more difficult to keep track of the progression and cohesiveness of each of the chefs' menus. Although these more sophisticated eaters can probably handle it.

Also, the chefs' were each given a surprise sous chef: Rocco DiSpirito, Michelle Bernstein, or Todd English. Now that was a fun idea, and added a short of interesting dimension to it all. While they were all assured competent, professional help and none of that sabotage stuff that can come with former competitors, it was obviously a little intimidating. I could tell that the bigwigs were finding it really hard not to offer their input.

And lastly, taking a page from Project Runway Season 2, they were thrown a curveball and told to create a fourth dish with only an hour left. Here's where the former cheftestants came in. The pairings worked out surprisingly well: no drama here. And finally, Brian, the last chef kicked off, got to join the judges for the meal. I thought this was a bit bizarre, but Tom's blog indicates that Brian was still stuck in Aspen after getting kicked off and they figured they might as well invite him. Lucky guy.

So onto the food. I was kind of disappointed to see that Casey just didn't do well, and she knew it. Maybe had she more time to plan things it could have been different, but after the second course it was kind of obvious that it was going to come down to Dale and Hung. I've been saying all along that I thought Dale was a really thoughtful and creative chef and he really showed it here, with lots of interesting flavors and concepts that he'd never even done before. But while he he had two excellent dishes, his gnocchi course was called inedible. Ouch. Hung, on the other hand, is the technical master, which he displayed with full force, but he finally brought in some of his Asian influences and it really paid off. I actually thought the chocolate cake was a good idea. I mean, on the one hand, it was going to impress anyone, but in terms of a menu it made sense.

So Top Chef Season does it stack up as a whole? There were less personalities this time around, but a lot more likable people and a whole lot less drama. Which was maybe a little boring at times, but a heck of lot better than last year. And I think that the top 3 were really extraordinarily strong, definitely better than last year, and really right up there with Season 1, possibly even better. So yes, the show redeemed itself this year, and obviously I'll be here for next season!