Quote of The Weekend: "Replacing [Dan]

Rather with [Katie] Couric would be good for people who like the news but wish it contained more awkward flirting." — Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update.

SUNDAY

Numbers
Are we sick of the promos for this yet? Sometimes networks overdo it to the point where I feel like yelling at the TV, "Yeah, all right, I'll watch that damn thing, now just stop reminding me!" Anyway, earnest FBI agent Don Eppes (Rob Morrow) was after a serial rapist-turned-murderer and it was his mathematician brother, Charlie, (big-eyebrowed David Krumholtz) who finally helped him crack the case with a rather unwieldy equation. This was a pretty good show, especially the extra graphics and effects used to make deadly boring math mildly interesting. But it mostly made me think of two things:

  • With all the Law & Order and CSI franchises, plus every other cop, lawyer and talking-to-the-dead show on the air, are there really enough interesting murders to go around? I picture these writing staffs beating their brains out to think of new, disgusting and depraved ways to kill people each week.
  • Seeing those equations on the chalkboard gave me horrible (and I mean horrible) flashbacks of my 10th-grade chemistry class. [Sound of me shuddering from the long-buried images of a vampire-like chemistry teacher.]

    AFC Championship Game: Patriots vs. Steelers
    After two Super Bowls in three years — plus the Red Sox winning the World Series — I'm feeling a little guilty for enjoying this 41-27 victory so much. Well, like most of New England, I'll get over it. I will say, though, that it was a little nerve-wracking in the third quarter, when it looked like the momentum was shifting dramatically... that is, until Eugene Wilson's second interception of the day. See, now I feel like that was gloating to point that out. Deion Branch's 23-yard TD run of course clinched it and gave CBS's Jim Nantz the opportunity to exclaim, "Jacksonville, here they come!" before the game was actually over.

    Desperate Housewives
    Hey Rex, it's probably not a good idea to piss off the pharmacist who's not only obsessed with your wife, but also fills your heart med prescriptions. Just a thought.

    So what else did we have in this episode? John proposed marriage to Gabrielle. She turned him down, but appeared to have turned on John's father along the way. Yeah, that's skeezy. Although no worse than seeing Susan dancing with the always chipper Paul. Mrs. Huber's murderer really needs to be more careful. He tells Zach that his supposedly dead sister, Dana, is actually alive, which results in them having to stick around Wisteria Lane. But then again, how would Zach secretly see Julie unless he was hangin' around the neighborhood? And lastly, Ryan O'Neal freaked out both Lynette and her husband — although, in much different ways — with his proud history of philandering.

    NFC Championship Game: Eagles vs. Falcons
    Right after Chad Lewis's touchdown in the fourth quarter, which put Philadelphia ahead 27-10 (with the kick), I thought, finally, after all this time, Donovan McNabb is over the NFC Championship Game hump. (Unfortunately for Atlanta, he gift-wrapped it and gave it to Michael Vick for safekeeping). Now, if I were McNabb, I'd call up former Buffalo Bills quarterback (and perennial Super Bowl loser) Jim Kelly to ask him how to win the big game — and then do the opposite of that.

    The quickest observation of the day came from Fox's Cris Collinsworth after a Philly fan got onto the field and was quickly tackled by security. "It may be," he said, "the best hit of the day was by the security guard."

    Dateline
    As part of its tribute to Johnny Carson, Dateline ran a Today show interview with him from 1983. It was strange because I'd never seen such an extended conversation with him in which he was the one answering the questions. He talked about how he was essentially a shy person, as well as his initial hesitation to take The Tonight Show gig in 1962. As I watched this I had to remind myself that it's been nearly 13 whole years since we've really seen him. But there was always a chance, and now...

    The Surreal Life
    The cowboy-themed episode got all serious a couple of times, so it's harder to roll your eyes at it. Dammit. It's always a little weird when these random celebrities are thrown together for pure kitsch and entertainment value and they somehow form a bond. It happened this time during their campfire chitchat, when Da Brat told giant Joanie that she was pretty and didn't need all that makeup she wears. Then, a genuinely touched Joanie shared with the stunned group that she had attempted suicide just six months earlier. Tears, then group hug. Later, in a "confessional" segment, she said, "I felt like I've had more family on this show than I ever have in my whole life."

    Meet the Press
    Hardworking, insightful Tim Russert is the best at what he does — but he really does need a haircut this week.

    SATURDAY

    Saturday Night Live
    I actually look forward to the last sketch of the night because you know it's either going to be so unbelievably bad it will be laughable, or it will be so out-there and offbeat that it will be fun to watch. And tonight's didn't disappoint in the latter category. Host Paul Giamatti and Rachel Dratch played a couple on a first date who had returned to her apartment. As Paul's character was trying to make his move, Rachel introduced him to her "baby," her sweet, adorable cat Franklin. Paul tried his best to warm up to the little guy, but it was difficult since the cat was actually Fred Armisen in a furry cat suit, meowing like crazy. Hilarious. I was laughing the whole time as Franklin indiscriminately climbed and clawed all over Paul, who was trying to play it cool so he could finally get some tail (from Rachel's character, not Fred's).

    FRIDAY

    20/20
    Look, I do feel terrible that LaToya Jackson was, according to her, abused by her ex-husband, who allegedly made her pose for Playboy and perform a bunch of other bizarre, Jacksonesque behavior. But the timing of this interview is, at best, a bit odd. In between the unsettling details of her deeply troubled marriage, she defended her soon-to-go-on-trial brother Michael and plugged her upcoming CD. Boy, I'd love to see the marketing plan for that batch of songs.