Entry for March 11, 2008: Genre TV update

Friends, I hope you had a good weekend. On Friday, 7 March 2008, I caught the latest episodes and season finale of Stargate: Atlantis, which was O.K. I like the space opera's characters (especially the returning cameos) on the Stargate SG1 spin-off, but the plot was predictable. I am looking forward to catching the SG1 direct-to-video Ark of Truth.

Although I missed the latest Legion of Superheroes, I did watch the series premiere of Spectacular Spider-Man. The animation was a bit simplistic and kid-friendly (like that of the recent Teen Titans), but the writing was close to that of the original comic book during the Lee/Ditko era, in which adolescent Peter Parker struggled to juggle being a broke nerd in high school with being a new superhero. The angst of Spidey's later misadventures is mercifully missing or yet to come.

I also enjoyed the series finale of the WB's The Batman, in which the nascent Justice League regrouped to fight an alien menace. Again, a standard plot, but it was nice to see that version of DC Comics' superteam get together, just as the proto-League has helped Smallville. I look forward to the upcoming Batman: Gotham Knight and Brave and Bold.

Since it rained hard early in the weekend, I continued catching up on reading comic books, watched a few episodes of Attack of the Show and The Women of Ninja Warrior on G4, plus some episodes of Food Network Challenge and Ultimate Recipe Showdown. Speaking of food, Janice and I tried out "Gabriella's Bistro," a new restaurant in Needham, Massachusetts, for a decent brunch on Sunday.

Like Stargate: Atlantis, the latest episode of Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood dealt with the lack of finality of death typical in horror and science fiction, but it did so in an internally consistent fashion. Speaking of immortal protagonists, I finally watched the first few episodes of New Amsterdam, which I liked.

Comparisons to the swashbuckling Highlander: the Series are inevitable, but I found the Dutch (actually Danish) detective and his relationships to be compelling in much the same way as romantic fantasies such as Cupid, Journeyman, and Pushing Daisies. Plus, it was nice seeing New York City in New Amsterdam, not to mention the shout-outs to alma maters SUNY-Binghamton and Queens College. In the absence of Heroes or Terminator: the Sarah Connor Chronicles on Monday nights, this will be a good genre television fix.

Fellow blogger Ken G. discussed upcoming movies of note (including The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, pictured above). We're both looking forward to Iron Man, and I'd add Hellboy 2: The Golden Army to his list. Depending on the timing of co-workers' vacations and St. Louis-based gamer Byron V.O.'s visit next month, I may try to get to the New York Comic-Con.

Janice is visiting her parents in Upstate New York this week to help her mother after her knee-replacement surgery. This coming weekend, Thomas K.Y. and I will be getting together with David I.S., who'll be in the Boston area for the wedding of Nate P. Let's hope the weather cooperates!