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Monday, January 28, 2013

The Groove Tube #56: Deception is dull (but David A. Gregory is dishy)

Welcome to The Groove Tube, a weekly recap of the highlights (and lowlights) of some of the scripted TV shows I'm watching (in order of preference):

TV Series of the Week: American Horror Story: Asylum
"Madness Ends" (Episode 25/January 23, 2013)

Best Couple of the Week: Lana and her lover, opera singer Marion (played by Joan Severance, who appeared on TV's Wiseguy in 1987 as Kevin Spacey's sister).

Best Retro Song of the Week: Carole King's 1971 hit, "I Feel the Earth Move".

Best Mother and Child Reunion of the Week: Lana and her psycho son Johnny, which ended with her shooting him in the head.

Grade: A (although I wanted to learn more about the aliens who apparently took away a dying Kit, it was still a satisfying end to another bizarre but thoroughly entertaining season - and it didn't leave me hanging like the first season [I still want to know what happened with Constance and her evil grandson]).

Overall Season Grade: A

Last Words (written on 3/7/13): I wasn't so sure that I would like the anthology concept of the series - featuring an entirely new set of characters each season - but Asylum completely won me over. Co-creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk should be commended for telling yet another addictive horror story that kept me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end. I hope that the Emmys recognize the outstanding performances by Jessica Lange, Lily Rabe and Sarah Paulson - all three of these talented ladies deserve an award in my opinion. I also enjoyed Evan Peters, James Cromwell, Zachary Quinto and the rest of the amazing cast. And now we can look forward to a third season, which will be set in the present day (I did love the groovy 1960s/early '70s vibe of Season 2). Returning actors will be Lange, Paulson, Peters, Rabe, Frances Conroy and Taissa Farmiga (who played Violet in Season 1). Also, Oscar-winning actress Kathy Bates will play Lange's best friend who becomes her worst enemy. Sounds like more delicious drama - and I can't wait!

2) Downton Abbey
Episode 21/January 27, 2013

Saddest Death of the Week: Poor Sybil died from eclampsia after giving birth to her and Tom's daughter (even Thomas cried).

Best Line: "The decision lies with the chauffeur" - the Dowager Countess who won't let anyone forget Tom's previous position.

Grade: A

3) Nashville
"You Win Again" (Episode 11/January 23, 2013)

Best Cliffhanger of the Week: Rayna and Teddy were surprised when Deacon joined Juliette's band and the tour.

Grade: A

4) The New Normal
"Gaydar" (Episode 14/January 22, 2013)

Grooviest Guest Star of the Week: John Stamos as Brice, Jane's metrosexual co-worker at the real estate agency whom she's attracted to.

Grooviest Guest Star of the Week Runner-Up: Mark Consuelos as Chris, a gay grip on the TV series, Sing, whom Rocky is attracted to.

Best Makeover of the Week: Brice transformed Jane into a hip Hollywood gal.

Grade: A (lots of laughs)

5) Glee
"Sadie Hawkins" (Episode 77/January 24, 2013)

Most Surprising Crush of the Week Runner-Up: Tina likes Blaine - and I don't blame her.

Most Surprising Crush of the Week: Blaine likes Sam - and I wish Sam liked him back.

Most Humiliating Rejection of the Week: Blaine turned down Tina's invitation to the Sadie Hawkins dance.

Best Return of the Week: Former New Directions member Lauren Zizes - but I was disappointed that she didn't have any scenes with her ex-boyfriend Puck.

Worst Couple of the Week: They stuck Lauren with boring Joe.

Biggest Disappointment of the Week: We didn't get to see a shirtless Brody audition for Magic Mike the Musical.

Cutest New Character of the Week: Oliver Kieran Jones as Adam Crawford, the leader of NYADA's glee club, Adam’s Apples - and a potential new love interest for Kurt.

Dumbest Storyline of the Week: Rachel got pissed off at Brody for showing up 45 minutes late for the special dinner she prepared for him. Why didn't he call her?

Best Musical Performance Runner-Up: Tina's "I Don't Know How to Love Him" from Jesus Christ Superstar.

Best Musical Performance: Brittany and Marley's rendition of the Exciters' 1962 hit, "Tell Him".

Grade: B

6) Modern Family
"Fulgencio" (Episode 85/January 23, 2013)

Most Annoying Characters of the Week: Gloria's mother Pilar and sister Sonia (I hope they never visit her again).

Hottest Hunk of the Week Runner-Up: 38-year-old Craig Zimmerman as Cam and Mitchell's cute friend Crispin.

Grade: C (I just didn't find this episode all that funny - even The Godfather homage, which derived its humor from making Phil and Luke behave like the movie's characters)

7) Deception
"A Drop of Blood and a Microscope" (Episode 3/January 21, 2013)

Hottest Hunk of the Week: David A. Gregory, the 27-year-old former One Life to Live actor, as Mia's new motorcycle-riding friend.

Grade: C-

Overall Grade: C

Last Words: Even the gorgeous Mr. Gregory can't keep me watching this boring show, which suffers from the same problems as ABC's canceled 666 Park Avenue - a pretty but bland leading actress and characters that I just don't care about. Deception desperately wants to be the next Revenge (which is having its own problems this season), but it's a soap without any suds worth tuning in for. The show's main storyline of "Who Killed Vivian?" is one dull mystery - and I was surprised to learn today that creator Liz Heldens previously worked on Friday Night Lights, one of the best TV dramas ever. Hopefully Gregory and his talented co-stars, Victor Garber and Tate Donovan, will all find something much better to do in the near future.

Below you can watch a shirtless Gregory on an episode of One Life to Live.

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