Ah, summer has come, which means good TV has gone. Ok. Maybe summer hasn't officially come yet, you calendar sticklers, but you know what I mean.
No more cheerleader-saving mutants.
No more CTU agents fighting the evil Chinese.
No more stranded survivors on eerie islands.
No more unrequited office romances.
No more overly requited hospital romances.
What's a girl to do?
Well, aside from a few of my old summer staples like So You Think You Can Dance, Top Chef, and Hell's Kitchen, I've discovered two new shows to add to the Official Monkey Viewing Schedule: Hidden Palms on The CW and Traveler on ABC.
Hidden Palms is the new The OC, which was once the new Dawson's Creek. No surprise -- HP is the latest brainchild of Kevin Williamson, the same dude who brought us the original angst-ridden Creek teens. Now that Joey Potter has grown up and married Scientology's top gun, and Marissa Cooper has moved on to dating guys with extraordinarily long, droopy balls, the world is aching for a good new teen drama. (Hmm. Be careful with that last link. Extra hint: You have to scroll.)
Having digested the first two episodes, I say HP has potential. Notwithstanding its predictability and stock characters, I'm still hooked enough that I'll watch next week...and probably all summer long. I'm a pretty easy customer. And who am I kidding? I've been waiting for a new Pacey for years. HP is nothing more than Creek + The OC set in Palm Springs.
And I love it for that.
My equation is actually rather literal. Not only is this a Kevin Williamson joint, HP's protagonist used to play Oliver (the crazy rich kid who was obsessed with Marissa), and another HP lead played Zach (the guy who dated Summer Roberts off and on before she settled down with Seth Cohen) on The OC.
Yes, I watch a buttload of TV. I also have a remarkable knack for remembering faces and names, real or fictional.
Anyway, The OC connection doesn't stop there. The Orange Curtain extends all the way to my other new show, Traveler. This show is all about suspense. It's packed with lots of running from the cops. Why? In case you decide to watch the first couple episodes online or on your TiVo, I will refrain from ruining your viewing pleasure by speaking only in generalities. The premise is that two Yale graduates get into lots of trouble for something they didn't do, and now the guys are on the lam, while simultaneously trying to figure out the true identity of their other friend.
Traveler has been sufficiently exciting so far, although I do think the origin of the show's title is pretty lame. I won't reveal anything further, just in case you plan to watch. Oh, yes, I forgot about The OC connection. One of the two main characters is played by none other than the guy who played Ryan Atwood's ne'er-do-well brother (you know, the guy who used to be in prison and then raped Marissa). Now he plays a trust fund baby. Great!
I need to play some Phantom Planet now and read a comic book. Oh, how I miss thee, Adam Brody.