"Running Wilde" (Tuesdays 9 p.m. FOX)
"Running Wilde" is the latest attempt by Mitchell Hurwitz, creator of the manically clever "Arrested Development," to develop a classic sitcom. Unfortunately "Wilde," in its current state, will not be that show.
While "Arrested Development" failed to find an audience because it was too smart for the general public, "Running Wilde" will fail because of its mind-numbing stupidity. However, if the comedy improves to the level of "Development," so will the show.
"Wilde" follows the life of millionaire Steve Wilde, played by funnyman Will Arnett, as he reconnects with his ex-girlfriend Emmy Kadubic, played by Keri Russell. As they rekindle old sparks, Emmy tries to make a better man out of Steve. The thing that bothers me the most about this show is the enormous ego of Steve, who is neither funny nor likable. With some major characterization changes and stronger writing, the cast will go from running wild to being on their way to becoming a classic television cast. 2 millions out of 4
"Outsourced" (Thursdays 9:30 p.m. NBC)
I'm all for politically incorrect comedies, but when they aren't funny, like the new NBC show "Outsourced," they are just politically incorrect messes. Every actor in this new office comedy is trying their hardest; unfortunately their hardest is not good enough. "Outsourced" follows an American call center manager who realizes one day that his employees have been outsourced to Mumbai, India. He is told that he has to go to the call center in India to fulfill his managerial duties. It is here where we get the clash of American and Indian culture. Most of the comedy -- actually ALL of the comedy -- offered by the show is in the form of stereotyping its Indian characters and their culture. It took just a few minutes into the first episode before we got the first joke about the sacredness of cows. The writers need to stop making the cheap easy jokes and instead write a show with wittier humor before viewers realize that they deserve better than this joke of a show. 2 customer supports out of 4
"No Ordinary Family" (Tuesdays 8 p.m. ABC)
ABC's "No Ordinary Family" is actually one very ordinary but hugely entertaining show. "Family" breaks no new ground and is packed with every superhero cliche that can be found in a Marvel Comic; but who says that all new TV shows have to be original? With a similar premise as the hit Pixar film "The Incredibles," this series follows the lives of a dysfunctional family as they deal with newly acquired superpowers after surviving a plane crash. The entertainment value of this show really packs a superhero-sized punch in its prime-time television slot. It has very funny parts but not enough for the series to be considered a comedy; it deals with very dramatic themes but isn't a drama; it has some good twists but can't be considered a strict thriller. It is this mix of genres that gives the show heart and make it work on several levels. If ABC can keep up the fast-paced writing and keep the show from taking itself too seriously (does "Flashfoward" come to mind?), it will surely have a new hit. 3 capes out of 4
"The Amazing Race" (Sundays 8 p.m. CBS)
If you haven't watched any of the 17 seasons of "The Amazing Race," you are really missing out on some of the best reality TV. Being one of the pioneer shows of the reality TV era, there is no doubt that this show knows how to deliver on every level. Winning seven consecutive Emmy Awards for best Reality Show, "Race" follows 12 teams on a race around the world. Some of the destinations that teams visit are exotic and beautiful; while others are effective in televising the social conditions of very poor countries. This is a great show to watch if you enjoy learning about international cultures. The race is divided into several legs, and the last team to arrive at the pit stop at the end of each leg is eliminated. Along the way teammates have to work together to solve challenges and finish tasks. It is the interactions between teammates, whether they are fighting, disputing or screaming at each other that turn the show into a reality masterpiece. "The Amazing Race" is an amazing show. 4 plane tickets out of 4
"30 Rock" (Thursdays 8:30 p.m. NBC)
"30 Rock" is simply the best satirical show on TV and has three consecutive Outstanding Comedy Series Emmys to prove it. Nothing is off-limits. Mocking everything from the show itself to current politics, the writers, many of whom are "Saturday Night Live" alums, always manage to keep viewers laughing. It helps if you know pop culture though, because this is the territory where the writers spend most of their time. The series, a show-within-a-show format, centers on members of a fictional sketch comedy show at NBC Studios. Hilarity ensues as the head writer of the fictional show, played by the always funny Tina Fey, tries to control her cast, often going to great lengths to keep everybody happy. The characters are perfectly cast in "30 Rock," which adds to the funniness of the series. Everybody gets a chance to shine and show off their mad comic chops. Even guest stars, many of whom aren't comedians, are successful in adding to the laughs. "30 Rock" is the epitome of what all satirical shows should be, and after a dull Season Four, "Rock" returns to remind us what real comedy is. 4 laughs out of 4
"The Event" (Mondays 9 p.m. NBC)
The most anticipated show of the fall is the NBC mystery-thriller "The Event." Some shows, when promoted as much as this was, fail because they are not able to meet the expectations of viewers. I am happy to say this is not one of those shows. The pilot episode of "The Event" was like watching a teaser trailer for a great psychological thriller. Nothing really made any sense, but it was so intriguing that I'm sure viewers won't be able to stop themselves from tuning in for more. After the hourlong episode I can't even begin to describe the elaborate plot that has already developed, but basically it follows the intertwining lives of several individuals, who all have a connection to what is only referred to as The Event. What amazes me the most is the show's use of nonlinear story telling. Scenes skip around in time, and focus on different characters. I am hoping that people give this "Event" at least a seasonlong chance because it has tremendous potential. 3 RSVPs out of 4
Ian Scaduto is a junior at Clarence High School.