Oh. My. God. They just killed off Vaughn! I'm still reeling from last seasons "I'm not Michael Vaughn" out-of-nowhere car crash. and then suddenly there are strains of a weepy Sarah McLachlan ballad and visions of a funeral on my screen. That doesn't seem like "mostly dead," or "We've got a big secret he's not really gone." That seems like all dead to me. Whoa. Let me process for a minute here. I had heard the rumors and all, but I seriously expected it to be because he was a jerk who was really a traitor to his country and was going to abandon Syd and the kid, or that those manipulative writers were just throwing around stories to trick me. I know the last time that I checked our poll on Thursday a lot of people said they wouldn't keep watching the show if Michael Vartan's character were killed off. I for one will keep tuning in, not just out of a sense of loyalty, but because I think it's going to be fascinating to see this mom-to-be kick butt with some raging pregnancy hormones and a good dollop of revenge. I'd hate to be on the receiving end of her wrath, because it's going to be fierce. Anyway, back to tonight's episode: I totally knew that Gordon Dean was a baddie. Did I think he was going to fill Vaughn full of bullet holes? Um, no. Frame him? Sure. That Project 5 (which is, interestingly enough, a number sequence. Do you think the code from Lost could be involved?) stuff must be really important. But not as important as hiding Jennifer Garner's burgeoning baby-bulge in the scenes before Syd discovered that she was expecting. Got to give the camera crew and costumers credit for using some tricky angles and sweaters and handbags to discreetly disguise the situation. I did love that the first thing Syd did after she discovered she was pregnant was to jump off a cliff to save her life. Guess work doesn't take a holiday in the CIA, and baddies are unlikely to go any easier on her. Which should make the rest of this season pretty fascinating. Fingers crossed. Angel Cohn
Will & Grace
I was very excited to be able to write about attending tonight's West Coast season-premiere live broadcast. I've been anticipating this for weeks, ever since I knew I was going. A good friend works on the show, so I've been to approximately 40 tapings. But I was extremely nervous, so you know I was really looking forward to this night. Due to the multiple takes, normal tapings take about four hours. The writers often rewrite the scenes to make them funnier, so the actors flub their lines and director Jimmy Burrows is a perfectionist. So knowing this was live, I wondered how they could possibly do it ,since they couldn't do scenes over and over and only had a half hour twice once for each coast. Truth is, they've been rehearsing this for four weeks to get it down pat, and the script had gone through so many changes, it had to be perfect. Well, you didn't have to be in the live studio audience to be able to enjoy it, but it certainly made it even better. I cannot remember the last time I laughed so nonstop at this show; I laughed so much that I wish they did it live every week.
I am well aware that some of my colleagues here at TVGuide.com and at the magazine have not been very kind about this show lately, but I myself am still a fan. I admit that it's not as funny as it used to be, and they really need to simma don nah on all the guest stars. But tonight was absolutely hilarious, and the cast was fabulous. Funniest parts were the few times Debra Messing and Sean Hayes broke character and laughed at each other. I thought I was watching Carol Burnett and Harvey Korman on The Carol Burnett Show (when I watched it on my TiVo when I got home tonight, I could totally hear my laugh several times, along with my roommate Jason and friend Dawn's laughs). Eric McCormack and guest-star Alec Baldwin only broke character once, but I don't remember Megan Mullally or Shelley Morrison ever breaking. Dave Anderson
I admit it. I'm superexcited for this entire season. We're about to get Tom Welling and James Marsters on the same show. Yeah, I know, I'm gushing. Sue me. But before you do, let's talk. Last season, I watched on and off, so I admit to some confusion with all things three stones, Lana's tattooed back and Jane Seymour. But that's behind me. I think this season, The Powers That Be really need to up the ante and become bigger and better, especially since the show is in a dreadful time slot. And here's just a few ways they're already going about it.
1) There's no better way to hook me than going all Superman 2. Seriously, the Kryptonian superhumans that came to Earth. Lionel Luthor uttering "The disciples of Zod must be stopped." Clark entering the Fortress of Solitude. Over the top, but I fell for it. Except for the way Kal-El got rid of the bad guys. Too easy and cheesy.
2) Clark now knows Chloe knows about his secret. Those scenes in the hospital were classic. But one thing: Why didn't Clark tell Chloe that his best friend, formerly known as Pete, knew his secret? I guess out of Smallville, out of mind.
3) Oh, Lana. Freaky city in this episode. I mean, scary! It's like she was possessed without really being possessed. Don't know how I feel about her and Clark's reunion. I'm going to have ponder that one for a week.
4) It seems my favorite couple on the show might be hitting a bit of turbulence. Those stares between Lex and Clark were icy. Fortress of Solitude icy. Where's the love, boys?
5) I saved the best for last, since it was appropriately the supercool last scene of the entire episode: James Marsters pouring from the spaceship that Lana stupidly told Lex about. Welcome to Smallville, Spikey! Can't wait to see what trouble you're gonna get into. BC
I want to give the whole cast and all the writers of this show a great big hug. It has been a long summer, and though at the end of last season I was a little bit annoyed with Andy and more than a little tired of Ephram, absence has definitely made the heart grow fonder. Sure, Andy was a jerk with bad timing to Nina, but she called him on it and didn't back down from her decision to stay with Dr. Dimples. And Ephram selfishly I know, he's a tormented teenager who has been through a lot took off without considering Amy or Delia, but by coming back for the wedding, it seems that his European vacation helped him grow up a little bit. I was sort of on the right track with the who was getting married thing I thought that Rose and Harold were going to renew their vows after the cancer treatments had ended. But to give Edna and Irv a proper wedding was so sweet, and their loving vows and Irv's anxious desire to kiss the bride set a great example for this small town's conflicted couples. And while I was so pleased with Bright and Hannah's season-ending smooch, I thought for sure that the fates would keep them apart, but despite her major hair don't, they are back together and utterly adorable. The most heartwrenching scene of the night was when the unsinkable Rose Abbott confronted Amy about the way she'd been treating her. I literally felt their pain and am so glad that they've decided to open up the lines of communication, even if the first hurdle is figuring out what Amy should do about her crush on a gay guy. Somehow I'm thinking that Ephram's 11th-hour return might make that problem null and void. AC