The Sopranos
And now things get messy. (Like the dog poop on Tony's shoe.) It's funny, I thought that strangely romantic moment between Tony (James Gandolfini) and Adriana (Drea "I got a sitcom, everybody!" de Matteo) was going to play itself out over several episodes (I guess I'm still getting used to last season's "C'mon, somethin' happen!" pace.) But nope — about 40 minutes later, Tony has a gun digging into Christopher's face as he forces him to truly believe that nothing actually happened between him and Adriana before the dreaded car accident. (Did the Feds hire that reckless raccoon to dart out in the middle of the road like that?) Man, there is something ugly churning inside Tony's battered head. As Dr. Melfi said, "For once, you want to avoid something you know that's wrong."

High School Reunion
On WB's website it says, "Will two weeks with Johnny destroy three with Brad?" (Brad is Louann's "current" boyfriend, by the way.) Well, after the Homecoming Queen kissed her first love, the quarterback, the answer is pretty much looking like a resounding "Yes!" You know, I'm thinking Louann may not be having massively catered viewing parties back home in Dallas.

The Simpsons
When the Simpsons get sick — like Bart did as Mozart in this episode — their skin turns a slightly lighter shade of yellow. I don't know why, but I think that's kinda funny.

Deadwood
Do you ever watch historical dramas and think you were born at just the right time? That maybe the old days weren't all that romantic, just plain gross? Al Swearengen is shaping up to be the nastiest, most sadistic (yet pragmatic) character of the last 10 years or so. Including that poor bastard Brom in this installment, I've lost track of how many killings he's responsible for. And it's hard to be sure, but I think Al may play dirty when it comes to competing with Deadwood's new saloon.

SATURDAY

Saturday Night Live
As the billionaire himself would say, Donald Trump was huge. List time:

  • Congratulations to Trump's senior counsel George Ross for saying "sucked" on network television.
  • We were all waiting for the hair joke and it came in the sketch in which Trump played a janitor who switches places with himself (that is, Darrell Hammond as the billionaire). Trump to Hammond: "Looks like you killed a squirrel and put it right on top of your head."
  • But the best part was that during the previous bit I kept thinking, "Didn't they do this on an episode of The Flintstones?" And then 45 seconds later that exact goofball coincidence was referenced on-air.
  • Kudos to the SNL lighting crew for replicating those overly dramatic boardroom shadows for the two Apprentice parodies. That's right, if you went to sleep early, there was another one at the end of the show.
  • During the "Father and Sons" talk-show bit, the Donald was the only one who didn't get a case of the giggles. Seth Meyers, Horatio Sanz and Jimmy Fallon all lost it to some degree. (OK, you're right, those last two don't really count.)
  • Speaking of losing it, Hammond had to pull it together during the Regis and Kelly sketch when Amy Poehler amped up her affectionate pawing of her cohost.
  • And lastly... Tina Fey in an evening gown.

    The NCAA Final Four
    I could pretend that I've been following the tournament all along, but that would require a lot of research and some lying. (Sorry. Love playing b-ball and watching the NBA, but no college hoops for me.) So I watched the two semifinal contests and arranged a three-way call with two sports-savvy TV Guide colleagues, Michael and Eric, to talk about UConn's 79-78 win over Duke and Georgia Tech's last-second 67-65 victory over Oklahoma State.
    Me: First off, what were you guys snacking on when you were watching the games?
    Eric: Sour cream and onion Lays and Cool Ranch Doritos.
    Michael: Uh, I'm on diet, I was chewing on ice.
    Me: OK. Michael, your thoughts on the Georgia Tech-Okahoma State game?
    Michael: My favorite part was watching to see if [Oklahoma's coach] Eddie Sutton's face could fall any further to floor. He's got one of the great rubbery faces in college-basketball history. And you were just hoping this guy would get to the big game and maybe win it.
    Me: Eric, say something about the Duke-UConn game.
    Eric: Well, about four minutes into it, Emeka Okafor got two fouls and was benched for the rest of the first half. UConn had been leading handily and then Duke just went crazy. And then there was another fantastic comeback. Duke, which is usually a very smartly coached and played team, made a lot of mistakes and UConn just stole it from them at the end.
    Michael: Yeah, couldn't have been sweeter. Not only did Duke lose, they betrayed themselves in a way, and that made me feel so good — me and every Duke-hater out there.
    Me: Eric, the pool you're in with your college buddies — the one for no money — where do you stand now? You had all four teams going into the Final Four.
    Eric: Right, the "bragging rights" pool I'm in.
    Me: Who do you have to win it all?
    Eric: UConn. No one has Georgia Tech to win the whole thing, so no matter what happens, I win.
    Michael: Really?!
    Eric: Yeah.
    Me: Well, congratulations. All right, guys, thanks very much.

    FRIDAY

    Joan of Arcadia
    Adam and Joan kissed again. I love Joan and I love the delicate way Amber Tamblyn plays her. But seriously, if she gets all confused again and leaves Adam going "What the hell?" I'm gonna roll my eyes so far back into my head that they'll stay there.

    The D.A.
    What was in that letter? Come on, tell me! And what does it have to do with the HMO not paying for bone-marrow transplants?! You're gonna wait until the last five minutes for the big reveal?! You're killin' me! But strangely enough this show isn't. It's not as good as The Practice at its legal-curveball-throwing peak, but it's not half bad either. I mean, who doesn't love J.K. Simmons (the Law & Order psych-consultant guy)? I wonder if he looks back and thinks that there was indeed a time when his initials didn't remind everyone of Harry Potter. Hey, you never know. We could all be one big-time celeb or serial murderer away from our names suddenly swerving away from our own unique identities.