Hit or Sh** Roundup: Spring 2016

Yee-haw, pardners! Welcome to Part Two of the HIT OR SH** roundup where we decide, once and for all, whether the shows that we gave Sh** Probation are worth your valuable time. Come along as we separate the AMERICAN CRIME STORYs from the LUCIFERs, and still try desperately to forget DR. KEN.

hit or sh** roundup you me and the apocalypse

YOU, ME, AND THE APOCALYPSE (NBC)

There are really only two reasons to watch this show: to bask in the return of Jenna Fischer to NBC or to watch the douchey-priest Rob Lowe and sharp-witted nun task force debunk false prophets and take on the Antichrist himself. I’ll be the first to sing Fischer’s praises, but her performance in this show is… not great. It’s clear that her heart isn’t in this as much as it was in our dearly departed THE OFFICE, and it’s just not going to get there. The Rob Lowe subplot has enough steam to be a show all on its own, but ultimately earns the least screen time out of the multitude of wacky subplots this show slings our way. With a total loss of what little potential this show had up front and episodes clocking in at over an hour, this is one you can definitely afford to skip. [Kate Brogden]

Final Verdict: Sh**

hit or sh** roundup billions large

BILLIONS (Showtime)

I admit to being totally lost for nearly half of any given episode of BILLIONS, but frankly, I just can’t stop watching these characters. Bobby Axelrod has the ambiguous moral code of Robin Hood and the cool guy ego of Ferris Bueller. Chuck Rhoades grapples with right and wrong, waffling between letting a white collar criminal and father of two walk free, and forcing a dog walker to pick up his dog’s droppings with his bare hands as his “civic duty.” And, of course, there’s the heart of the show, Wendy Rhoades: genius, calculating, sensual, empathetic, conflicted, and so damn strong. BILLIONS lays it on a little thick with the sex, occasionally startles with misogynistic dialogue (“pop like a Prom Queen’s cherry”), and lands on the nose a little too hard sometimes ‒ but that’s really to be expected from Showtime. Whether you’ve got a Bachelor’s in Business or an Associates in Underwater Graphic Design, the phenomenal ensemble of BILLIONS will lock you in. [Kate Brogden]

Final Verdict: Hit

hit or sh** roundup colony logo

COLONY (USA)

Just a few weeks shy of its season finale, COLONY has covered more narrative ground than most shows would dare attempt over their entire run. New characters and layered plot twists raise about a million new questions per episode and, as expected, the answers aren’t doled out with any expediency. It has yet to go completely off the rails, LOST-style, but with a recently announced second season, that’s still a very real danger. Still, as the series progresses, it becomes harder for even the most skeptical viewer to resist the intrigue. The pilot’s biggest hindrances, character development and cast performances, are catching up to the impeccable production design. So this may just be worth the time after all. [Tommy Ryan]

Final Verdict: Hit

hit or sh** roundup superstore logo

SUPERSTORE (NBC)

I’ll never be so bold as to go to bat for SUPERSTORE’s intelligence and craft per se, but goddammit, this show is just one of those comedies that elicits cheap chuckles from its audience, and if I’m laughing, then I suppose comedy has done its job. My biggest concern revolved around Amy and Jonah; SUPERSTORE takes the interesting tactic of aggressively shoving them to the backburner, which isn’t cohesive considering the pilot, but is a welcome decision nonetheless. As such, the situational comedy (almost always based on character quirks) is given an opportunity to shine, and it does far more than it doesn’t. Glenn and Dina are still stars of the show (I literally had to stuff a fist in my mouth during Glenn’s interview for the Cloud 9 inter-company magazine), but five episodes in there are enough plot lines introduced to even rescue characters like Cheyenne. Hell, even Mateo has his saving moment in the wonderfully topical episode dealing with stereotypes as a marketing tactic. Although I remain the least interested in the main characters, fuck it, SUPERSTORE makes me smile. [Thomas Seraydarian]

Final Verdict: Hit

hit or sh** roundup shades of blue

SHADES OF BLUE (NBC)

If anything can be said about SHADES OF BLUE, it’s that it’s consistent. Although checking the boxes of the requisite narrative turns and misdirects, each story beat in the show feels so obviously imminent that the viewer will likely be able to perfectly lay out exactly how the episode will end once the first commercial break hits. I was willing to let this slide for the pilot, as fully meeting the status quo is more than can be said for most shows on the boob tube, but I just can’t manage to remain invested a handful of episodes in. There are still scenes that feel as if they deserve more than the lot they’ve been cast (the polygraph scene between Matt and Harlee in “Original Sin,” for example), but there’s just not enough rope to hoist us out of the mire. I will bestow upon SHADES OF BLUE the honor of being the most functional and adequate network cop drama of recent memory, but honey, this is 2016, and I’ve got a billion other shows knocking on my door. [Thomas Seraydarian]

Final Verdict: Sh**

hit or sh** roundup into the badlands

INTO THE BADLANDS (AMC)

INTO THE BADLANDS’s first season ended as abruptly, and violently, as it began. After only six episodes, more heads rolled than a busy season of THE WALKING DEAD. And like that other AMC bloodbath, this season featured plenty of robotic acting and dull plot threads. Luckily, the show’s unabashed, over-the-top choreography and set pieces are enough to make up for this. And with a good chunk of the cast who would’ve slowed the plot dead and buried, there’s great potential for season two to pick up the pace in the areas where this one faltered. Keep an eye on this one. [Ed Dutcher]

Final Verdict: Hit

Crossfader Staff

The good people of Crossfader Magazine.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *