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Hercules Picks The 10 Best Scripted Hourlongs Of 2007!!

I am – Hercules!!
Scripted Hourlongs: 10) BROTHERHOOD (Showtime). The best crime drama on television this side of “The Wire.” Season two saw Michael the gangster’s brutality undiminished, even as he was dealing with seizures resulting from the brain damage sustained last season. Tommy played very dirty with the Latino voters. Eileen went back to work. Mary Rose got loaded. Thuggish cousin Colin from Ireland arrived. Decco Giggs the drunk state cop went to work for mob boss Freddie Cork. Out-of-town talent did some whacking. Tall, skinny Janel Moloney cavorted nakedly. A lot. 9) ROME (HBO). I preferred 2007’s second season of “Rome” to the excellent first; the later season’s plot zips along like rocketships, owing to what I’d guess was an abbreviated episode order from HBO. (It makes my temples throb to think that ten times as many people were watching “Desperate Housewives” Sunday nights at 9 p.m.) Indelible characters abounded: Octavian, Pullo, Vorenus, Brutus, Cicero, Atia, Timon, Octavia, Jocasta, Gaia, Niobe, Posca, Caesarion and most especially James Purefoy’s Antony. 8) HEROES (NBC). Its second season doesn’t help its ranking, but neither does it obliterate the stellar string of first-season episodes that aired between January and May, among them “Fallout,” “Godsend,” “The Fix,” “Distractions,” “Run!” “Unexpected,” “Parasite,” “.07,” “Five Years Gone” and especially “Company Man.” 7) MAD MEN (AMC). Don Draper glared menacingly at his hapless kid brother. Betty Draper got busy with a shotgun. Roger Sterling played horsie in his undies. Joan Holloway displayed her behind. Midge Daniels fucked a beatnick. Rachel Menken fell in lust. Pete Daniels sold a story. Peggy Olsen got fat. Whoever’s manning the green light over at the channel formally known as American Movie Classics deserves a big giant raise. The channel’s next new series, due later this month from Vince Gilligan (“The X-Files”), is about a dying chemistry teacher; can’t wait. 6) THE SOPRANOS (HBO). It’s difficult to believe fans wouldn’t love 2007’s final nine episodes, which saw the violent demise of more established “Sopranos” characters than any other. The ending was maybe one of the ten best ever in the history of TV. Had someone another, better idea? 5) TELL ME YOU LOVE ME (HBO). Insightful, alluring, well-considered, ground-breaking and fearless in its depiction of intimacy. HBO’s finest series this side of “The Wire” is the year’s second-best new show and mesmerizes with the most honest scripted look at the American bedroom ever offered for a screen of any size. Brims with suspense and makes you think. 4) PUSHING DAISIES (ABC). A romantic comedy for the ages. The funniest show, perhaps, to be waylaid by the inconvenient if necessary writer’s strike. It boasts both Bryan Fuller’s wit and Kristen Chenoweth’s breasts and Paul Reubens as a ratty man with supersmell. Private detective Emerson Cod is one of the most inspired comic creations in TV history. 3) LOST (ABC). The best season of an amazing show. Yes, there were horrible episodes in 2007, episodes that even Bai Ling’s comely hinder couldn’t redeem. But in the meantime Locke rediscovered his testes, and there was a deceptive Ukranian and giant invisible fence and a pretty fertility doctor and Richard Alpert and Jacob. The season finale even got me to give a shit about Hurley for the first time since season one. 2) VERONICA MARS (The CW). Always a fan, I never loved “Veronica” harder than during its final handful of episodes. A despondent Logan had to babysit Dick’s brand new sister-in-law, then beat on a Russian gangster’s son. Sheriff Lamb suffered misadventure. Vinnie Van Lowe’s ambitions grew. Mac Met Max. Paul Rudd rocked out. The title character tracked down a Comic-Con hooker, got tossed in stir, tussled with teaching assistant Tim Foyle, double-dog-dared paintballers, took her FBI exam, and took on the Hearst version of Skull & Bones. Many objected to the ending, which featured Veronica exiting from a polling booth into the Southern California rain, but it suited the series’ noir sensibility brilliantly. More pain came to fans in October with the release of the season-three DVD, which included a fabulous 20-minute mini-pilot for the series’ didn’t-happen fast-forward fourth season, set immediately after Ms. Mars’ graduation from the FBI academy. Fuck your bottom line; I am very very upset this show went away, Mr. Moonves. 1) BATTLESTAR GALACTICA (SciFi). Only 11 hours of the series aired in 2007, beginning with “Rapture” and ending with “Razor.” The algae planet’s sun went supernova, Tyrol welcomed Baltar back to the fleet and a rogue D’Anna got to meet the final five. “Dirty Hands,” the class-struggle episode written by Jane Espenson, may be the series’ best stand-alone episode since season one. The three-episode arc that concludes season three (it deals with the introduction of wily kleptomaniac Romo Lampkin and the trial of Gaius Baltar) is phenomenal, capped by the reveal of four more Cylons. And vipers rocketing into battle to “All Along the Watchtower.” A song that, candidly, always belonged in outer space. Supercool on every level. Sitcoms: 10) King of the Hill (Fox) 9) 30 Rock (NBC) 8) Flight of the Conchords (HBO) 7) Weeds (Showtime) 6) Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO) 5) Lucy, The Daughter of the Devil (CN) 4) The Sarah Silverman Program (CC) 3) The Office (NBC) 2) Andy Barker, P.I. (NBC) 1) South Park (CC) Reality Shows: 10) WifeSwap (ABC) 9) Kid Nation (CBS) 8) The Amazing Race (CBS) 7) A Shot At Love (VH1/MTV) 6) The Real World (MTV) 5) My Life On the D-List (Bravo) 4) Survivor (CBS) 3) The Real World/Road Rules Challenge (MTV) 2) The Bad Girls Club (Oxygen) 1) Big Brother (CBS) Chat Shows: 10) Iconoclasts (Sundance) 9) Sit Down Comedy With David Steinberg (TVL) 8) The Charlie Rose Show (PBS) 7) The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson 6) Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC) 5) The Late Show With David Letterman (CBS) 4) Late Night With Conan O’Brien (NBC) 3) The Colbert Report (CC) 2) The Daily Show With Jon Stewart (CC) 1) The Howard Stern Show (On Demand)

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