As usual lately, it was a jam-packed evening of first-rate television last night. So many premieres, so little time! Let's dive right in with the third season premiere of Cold Case. I was hesitant to see how the "new girl," Det. Josie Sutton (Sarah Brown), would gel with the rest of the cold case team, and whether or not her arrival would take away from the much-loved characters that already exist on this well-done procedural. The verdict is still out on the latter, but the former seemed to be apparent last night. Everyone seemed to accept Josie except Vera (Jeremy Ratchford), who was too busy focusing on her possible sex scandal at her former precinct. Josie seems like another well written female addition to the team, and Sarah Brown seems to be adjusting to her nicely. She gives Josie a sweetness, but also an edge that goes further than the possible sex scandal. Her first interrogation scene was strong. I felt that her introduction to the team was a little forced and hurried (she was introducing herself to Stillman one minute and interviewing a potential suspect the next), and Lilly (Kathryn Morris) didn't meet her until well into the episode, but overall, I like her and I think she's going to be a positive addition to the show. She comes complete with a past clouded in suspicion and that tough edge that the show is known for with its female characters.
Did anyone else feel that Lilly was somewhat in the background last night? I don't know whether it was the new female addition or whether it was that Scotty (Danny Pino) seemed to get a large chunk of the case, but I just felt like Lilly didn't have a lot to do case-wise. Although, her scene with Claire near the end was incredibly well done, and pretty much made up for the lack of her involvement in the rest of the case. Lilly just seemed "off" last night. It might have been a symptom of her encounter with George in last season's finale. I hope we get to see a more hands-on Lilly in future episodes. Her interrogation scenes are always some of the best on television. The case was very interesting, and I really felt for Quinn and Jimmy as they struggled through their predicament. The resolution was very touching when we learned that Jimmy had decided to stay with Quinn and raise their daughter. He was a stand-up guy, and he made for a very tragic victim. Loved the use of Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes" as the closing song. I was somewhat disappointed in the mere brush-over of Lilly's ordeal during last season's finale. We got a small glimpse when she entered the elevator carrying the newspaper article with George's burial notice. Other than that, she seemed unaffected. Did she take time off? She handed her gun to Stillman after she shot and killed George, but there was no mention of time off or psychological counseling. Was this why she had a sort-of back seat role this week? Perhaps this episode was not originally intended to be the premiere? I'm not sure. I'm hoping Lilly's emotional state is addressed in future episodes. Overall though, I thought this was a great start for Cold Case. The case was emotional and gripping, and it was good to see our favorite cold case detectives back on the job.
"Well, I have some news. Rex is dead." And thus began a very interesting journey through grief and comedy last night during Bree's (Marcia Cross) ever-so-controlled meltdown over the death of her husband. Her calm demeanor was even more on display when she and Danielle met the new neighbors (Alfre Woodard), and Bree calmly explained that there had been "a death in the family." It was classic Bree, and classic Desperate Housewives humor. Gabby's (Eva Longoria) jailhouse visits with Carlos (Ricardo Antonio Chavira) were equally as funny, especially when Gabby pointed out that no one died during her affair. Raise your hand now if you think that her forged paternity test results are going to come back to get her? Yeah, me too. Lynette's (Felicity Huffman) multi-tasking interview was hysterical! You just knew she'd get the job after her effective display of her multi-tasking abilities. Oh, and poor Susan (Teri Hatcher). Every time she thinks things are going well with Mike (James Denton), she gets thrown a curve ball like chances are Zach (Cody Kasch) is Mike's son. Now, she can't move in with him because she doesn't want Zach around her daughter Julie (Andrea Bowen). The culminating funeral scene was both hilarious and poignant as Bree replaced Rex's prep school tie with one that better matched his burial suit. An excellent start to what looks like a promising season. I can't wait to find out who new neighbor Betty Applewhite is holding captive in her basement!
About Last Night... Late-running football wreaked havoc on the schedule last night, so the ratings are a little confusing. CBS won the 8 p.m. hour with 50 minutes of news magazine 60 Minutes and ten minutes of Cold Case, followed by the second hour of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, and The West Wing in third over at NBC. At 9, ABC had the night's most watched show with Desperate Housewives, and CBS slipped to second with the remainder of Cold Case and the beginning of its Martha Stewart movie. NBC stayed in third with Law & Order: Criminal Intent. The final hour of the night belonged to ABC, with the second season premiere of Grey's Anatomy, followed by Crossing Jordan on NBC, and the conclusion of the Martha Stewart movie on CBS. For more on last night's ratings, visit Zap2it.
Friday night saw good returns for Ghost Whisperer, which won the hour. NBC's new reality show Three Wishes took the 9 p.m. hour, and the return of CBS's Numbers won the final hour of the night. For Friday's full ratings information, click on over to Zap2it.
Premiering Tonight!!! No new premieres tonight, but it doesn't mean that the night isn't jam-packed as usual. Laura (Lake Bell) tries to get closer to the truth, but ends up suffering a setback and the mysterious creature wreaks havoc at a party tonight on NBC's Surface. Later on NBC, Allison gets a song stuck in her head (Don't you hate that?!), but she soon realizes that it's a clue to a missing co-ed on Medium. And, Oscar-winner Charlize Theron guest stars on Arrested Development on Fox.
*If you missed the hysterical premiere of UPN's Everybody Hates Chris last week, you can catch it on search engine Google for the next four days. The promotion begins today, and runs through Thursday when the second episode airs. The show premiered to big numbers last week and captured more viewers than NBC's Joey.
*UPN is releasing information on Veronica Mars' second episode. Veronica works to help a family member disprove the sheriff on the episode entitled "Driver Ed." Actress Tessa Thompson joins the cast, and the episode will feature the music video to the new song "No Sleep Tonight" by The Faders. The single will be the first off of the Veronica Mars soundtrack. The episode airs October 5th. For more information and spoilers, visit The Futon Critic.
*And finally, it's TV on DVD Monday! The fourth season of Gilmore Girls hits shelves today. Plus, look for Law & Order: SVU(season 2), The Amazing Race (season 1), and Spongebob SquarePants (season 3) to also arrive at your nearest DVD retail store. For more releases, visit tvshowsondvd.com.
That's all for today. Be sure to tune in tomorrow for more thoughts on Surface (will it improve from the so-so pilot and become a great show and not just a great concept?) and the always intriguing Medium. Plus, all the latest television news.