Enjoy this blog because what you read is of legendary status.

Friday, June 19, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes Recap

Here is the list of my forty-five favorite episodes of television, in its entirety!

45. Look Before You Leap (Laverne & Shirley)
44. Avoidance (Wilfred)
43. Brian and Stewie (Family Guy)
42. Ducky Tie (How I Met Your Mother)
41. Niagara (The Office)
40. Pillows and Blankets (Community)
39. You've Got Sext (The Mindy Project)
38. Moving Up (Parks and Recreation)
37. Christmas Who? (SpongeBob SquarePants)
36. The Golf Game (I Love Lucy)
35. A.A.R.M. (The Office)
34. My Way Home (Scrubs)
33. Discos and Dragons (Freaks and Geeks)
32. The Chinese Restaurant (Seinfeld)
31. Digital Estate Planning (Community)
30. Leslie and Ron (Parks and Recreation)
29. S.O.B.s (Arrested Development)
28. Chuck Versus the Goodbye (Chuck)
27. Downer Ending (BoJack Horseman)
26. The Pen (Seinfeld)
25. Optimal Tip-to-Tip Efficiency (Silicon Valley)
24. Beach Games (The Office)
23. Pilot (The Last Man on Earth)
22. Lassie Jerky (Psych)
21. Background Check (New Girl)
20. The One with the Holiday Armadillo (Friends)
19. The Time Travelers (How I Met Your Mother)
18. Remedial Chaos Theory (Community)
17. The Fight (Parks and Recreation)
16. Live from Studio 6H (30 Rock)
15. Back to the Pilot (Family Guy)
14. My Finale (Scrubs)
13. Repilot (Community)
12. Ozymandias (Breaking Bad)
11. Marge vs. The Monorail (The Simpsons)
10. Resistance (Wilfred)
9. L.A. at Last! (I Love Lucy)
8. Pizza Delivery (SpongeBob SquarePants)
7. The One with the Embryos (Friends)
6. Meat the Veals (Arrested Development)
5. Dinner Party (The Office)
4. My Lunch (Scrubs)
3. The Injury (The Office)
2. The Contest (Seinfeld)
1. Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas (Community)

I really enjoyed doing this countdown and I do regret its delay at certain points, but I still think it was a fun way to say goodbye to school this year with the last forty-five days of classes. I enjoyed this list especially because I was able to celebrate what makes television shows great, in particular, the individual episodes, rather than just counting down shows in general. We were able to examine shows at a much closer lens and I'm very happy with the outcome. Some great installments on here. You should check them out.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 1

I went back and forth on what my all-time favorite episode of television is. Realistically, any one of my choices in the top ten could be placed at number one and I'd be satisfied. But when I really thought critically, I knew which one was a true number one, in my heart. Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas is very important to me and I hold it very close to my heart and to who I am as a person. Like many of Community's themed episodes (or episodes in general), the season two holiday special deals with Abed concerned about his place in family and his place with friends. As a result, he sees everything in the same style of the classic Rankin-Bass holiday specials. As Professor Ian Duncan tries to exploit Abed's mental state to make a name for himself, Abed is the one trying to find the meaning of Christmas. Eventually, his friends come around and help him do that. But it's the moment with Pierce that warms my heart the most. The whole episode is filled with emotions and profound thematic elements and it just...it really means a lot to me. That's the best I can say about it. I feel very warm just thinking about it.

This Week's Entertainment by David

It's the Last Day of School!

Well, it's that time of the year again. A time when thrills are aplenty. It's been one hundred and eighty days and I've actually been in attendance for every one of them. But yes. School. Is. Out. Happy summer!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 2

The Contest. I'm no contrarian. Everyone loves this episode of Seinfeld. Everyone thinks it's one of the best. I agree completely with them. It's a work of genius. Not just that it never uses the word, "masturbation," once, but rather that it is an episode about masturbation that is both funny and tasteful. Elaine is queen of the castle, Jerry is having fitful nights, and, as we learn in the series finale of Seinfeld, George just might have cheated. As Jerry becomes more and more frazzled, he becomes funnier and funnier, but the most spit-take-worthy scene will always be Kramer, spotting a naked woman across the street, leaving Jerry's apartment, and returning within two minutes, slamming money down on the table, and proclaiming, "I'm out!" I can't begin to describe my adoration for The Contest.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 3

Now, here is my favorite episode of The Office. Season two's The Injury. To me, it is the absolute pinnacle of the show's humor. From start to finish, the episode just does not stop being funny. And while the title of the episode does refer to Michael's foot, to an extent, it is more aptly in regards to Dwight's concussion, which is the source of Dwight finally beginning some semblance of a friendship with Pam and, as we see at the hospital, Michael and Jim, too. You also just cannot go wrong with Ryan in this episode either. Probably one of his best roles on the show came in The Injury. But I love this episode for another reason, too. Michael's monologue, which just might be the funniest monologue in the history of television.

"I enjoy having breakfast in bed. I like waking up to the smell of bacon - sue me - and since I don't have a butler, I have to do it myself. So most nights, before I go to bed, I will lay six strips of bacon out on my George Foreman grill. Then I go to sleep. When I wake up, I plug in the grill. I go back to sleep again. Then, I wake up to the smell of crackling bacon. It is delicious; it's good for me; it's the perfect way to start the day. Today, I got up, I stepped onto the grill, and it clamped down on my foot. That's it. I don't see what's so hard to believe about that." Golden.

Monday, June 15, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 4

Scrubs is a hilarious program, but there's no denying, in my eyes, that its best episodes are the ones that don't induce laughter at all. But rather, they make you feel a wide range of emotions. And, in particular, Scrubs handled sadness exceptionally well. That's what puts My Lunch, the saddest one of the series, in my opinion, in the top four. It starts off with J.D. and Dr. Cox simply trying to help out some patients, but when J.D. fails one, Dr. Cox takes him out to lunch and tells him that he cannot blame himself for what happened. Quickly, the tables are turned and J.D. is forced to console Perry when he gets greedy by giving away J.D.'s patient's organs to his patients only to learn she had rabies. He loses all of them. As he loses the last one, the reactions of Cox, J.D., and Carla are too much to handle. It's so emotional. But so good. With a fitting use of The Fray's How to Save a Life.

This Week's Sports by David

Friday, June 12, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 5

I've often seen Dinner Party subtitled as The Best Episode of The Office. And it is, without a doubt, my second favorite episode of the show. It is hilarious, awkward, and a bit sweet. The three classic elements of a classic episode of The Office. Only the cold open takes place in the office (see: Dwight crying) while the rest take place at Michael's condo, anchored by Mr. Scott, Jan, Jim, Pam, Andy, Angela, and then, later, Dwight and his former babysitter. But their relationship is purely carnal. This show is outright and undeniably hilarious with so many amazing, jealousy-inducing scenes that were brilliantly written. ("Except for one flower which is for my flower." "What am I supposed to do with this?") The best example is Jim toying with Michael during the game of Celebrity, but I also love Jim's face when he sticks his head out of Jan's candle workspace. Gosh, I could gush about the best parts of this episode forever. That one night (one night) you made everything alright.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 6

This is surprisingly an underrated episode of Arrested Development, but I consider it Mitch Hurwitz's masterpiece. The show at its best, if you will. Season two. Episode sixteen. Meat the Veals. I could describe to you why the episode is fantastic, but there's so much that it demands a list.

  • Tobias as Mrs. Featherbottom falling through the glass table.
  • "I don't want no part of your tight ass country club, you freak bitch!"
  • The zoom-in on Franklin's face.
  • Tobias' not-so-subtle run up the staircase.
  • Gob giving up his father so quickly.
  • "Oh, I forgot. You drive on the right side of the road here in the colonies."
  • Big Yellow Joint plays.
  • One of the hot cops comes back.
  • Maeby references Topher Grace.
  • Oscar questions his fatherhood three times.
  • "Who would like a banger in the mouth?"
It's truly the perfect episode of Arrested Development.

This Week's Entertainment by David

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 7

The One with the Embryos is probably one of the most famous episodes of Friends. And it's widely considered one of the best. However, the episode title is misleading because while Phoebe does have embryos put in her uterus and she does end up pregnant, the episode is deservedly more remembered for the trivia contest. It's such a quick, funny, quotable series of events. ("It's all relative," "Actually, it's Miss Chanandler Bong," "Big fat goalie!") And the humor is definitely what vaults this one to the top ten of the list, but there's one other thing I love about it. The expected outcome would be that Rachel and Monica win the contest and the chick and duck are removed to, presumably, make the show easier to film. But Chandler and Joey end up being the victors after Ross stumps the Rachel and Monica and not only do the birds stay, but the apartments switch. It's just a complete subverting of common tropes and I love it.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 8

This is SpongeBob at its finest. The best episodes are not reflective of a show for children, but rather an animated stroke of intelligent genius. And none of the eleven-minute episodes are as evident of this as Pizza Delivery. When the Krusty Krab decides to instill a pizza delivery service, Squidward and SpongeBob are dispatched to delivery it. But, unfortunately, they lose the boatmobile and are forced to delivery it on force. The mystique of this episode comes from how, despite only being eleven minutes, the writers and animators do an exceptional job of making it feel like the longest eleven minutes of your life because that's what it is for SpongeBob and Squidward. It makes you feel so frustrated and that's why it's so quality.

Monday, June 8, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 9

I didn't expect my favorite episode of I Love Lucy to be one not set in Manhattan, but as I thought about my favorite installments of the show, I knew I loved the California arc. And I love it because it starts off on such a high note. In L.A. at Last!, when the Ricardos and the Mertzes finally arrive in Hollywood, Lucy, Ethel, and Fred go to the Brown Derby where Lucy goes face-to-face with Bill Holden, who just happens to be the surprise guest Ricky brings home later that day. It's classic Lucy hijinks, but there's something about the episode that I just associate - not only with quality - but also with special times in life. I like it a lot.

This Week's Sports by David

Friday, June 5, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 10

Resistance. The penultimate episode of Wilfred. It is rough. The comedic elements of the show were almost completely gone at this point, but that made complete sense. The show evolved over time and it excelled at story-telling even more when it was taking the saga of Ryan and Wilfred through a dramatic lens. And boy does it rip them apart in this one. Wilfred, now three-legged, is still trying to lead Ryan to happiness and he believes Jenna to be the answer. But when she invites Drew to sleep on her couch, Wilfred believes he failed Ryan and, in one of the best acting performances I've ever seen, he destroys the basement before collapsing. At the veterinarian's office, Ryan mentally says goodbye to Wilfred by playing some fetch in the location of the basement's painting before a shocking moment where he and we see Wilfred as a real dog for the first time. But the episode still has more devastating consequences. Wilfred is dead, but Jenna and Drew reconcile and Ryan, feeling lost, runs on the beach, remembering Wilfred, before collapsing in the sand in anguish. It's a painful episode, but it's so well-made. It's art.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 11

It's a universal truth that The Simpsons was better in its early days. It's also a universal truth that seasons one to thirteen of The Simpsons are some of the best television in history. But the at the very top of this comedy pyramid sits Marge vs. the Monorail, a biting half-hour about the Springfield family that is oft regarded as the show's finest twenty-two minutes. The Simpsons was best when its satire was strongest and there are few episodes more satirical than this that sees the town completely obsessed with the idea of getting a monorail (cue the epic song and dance number), but Marge is just not so sure. "Monoraillll!"

This Week's Entertainment by David

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 12

Ozymandias is the pinnacle of Breaking Bad episodes. It is everything that makes the show so significant packed into just under an hour. Referring to the fallen king, Ozymandias, who has his own poem, the episode watches as everything Walt had in life crumbles around him. Jesse, his family, his money. His empire. Everything that is important to him is gone and only then do we see the shades of the anti-hero return as he makes strides to save everyone like he couldn't do with Hank. It's a tense yet astounding achievement of an hour.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 13

This episode of Community, Repilot, means a lot to me. Not only is it a great character study of Jeff Winger, but it is also a great study on the show itself and what makes it so wonderfully adored. After the rocky, Dan Harmon-less fourth season, he makes his triumphant return by flipping everything on its head. Jeff tried to help people, but now he's turning on his friends to make some money with the lawyer who turned him in in the first place. He's trying to destroy Greendale even though it's a "good place" for "good people." There is so much depth in the script and the storytelling in the episode that it's hard to even understand a fraction of what's going on the first time around. Repilot is viewed as Community's return to form by viewing the characters - not as perfect - but as so terribly flawed that the only way they can survive is with each other. In addition to this, the episode boasts some pretty heartbreaking lines. (See: "You're an amateur monster, Alan. And you stomp in the grave of a real monster who was willing to stay buried because real monsters have shame...That's for making me go to this school. That's for making the last four years happen. And now I get to make them un-happen for me and the only people I care about.") But fortunately, just as in the pilot (after all this is a revamp, a do-over), Pierce is the one who convinces Jeff not to turn his back on Greendale. In the same spot as five years ago. There's a beauty to it.

Monday, June 1, 2015

45 Favorite Episodes: 14

The series finale of Scrubs is, in my opinion, the greatest series finale in the history of television. It is so beautiful and such a great farewell to the show which had provided so many laughs and tears over the course of its eight (and only eight) seasons. The first half is more of the same Scrubs antics. J.D. and Turk perform one last flying eagle, for example. But the second half is when it starts getting emotional. J.D. has a heart-to-heart with Carla about leaving and he learns the Janitor's "real" name. But then it gets rough as Dr. Cox vents about his respect and love for J.D., not knowing "Newbie" is right behind him the whole time. The two hug as J.D. leaves the hospital and walks down a hallway of his shared experiences with people before watching what he hopes his future to be on the banner for his goodbye. Then, he walks off as the instrumental theme song plays slowly. It's so perfect. I love it.

This Week's Sports by David

May 2015 Covers of the Month

He may not have won his fight, but it was better to see him on the cover of Sports Illustrated than Floyd Mayweather.

I'm not even sorry. It's Chris Pratt.