The dos and don’ts of summer TV

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By Leah Dale

For those who are bummed out about their TV shows not airing this summer, rest assured, this season is full of entertainment.For instance, the season premiere of “True Blood” pulled in some huge ratings. Over 6.4 million viewers tuned in June 13 for the new season opener. It’s not the best show that has ever been done; however, after a premiere like that you can be assured that this show is not going away anytime soon. If you’re interested in fast-paced story lines, hot vampires and other paranormal creatures and activities, then HBO’s True Blood has what you need. I definitely give it five stars.

If you are looking for some comedy, TBS just launched a new adult animated series titled “Neighbors from Hell.” Here is the setup: The Hellmans are a demon family from Hell. The head of the clan, Balthazor, tortures people for a living. One day he is caught watching American television (which is illegal in Hell) and is punished by having to come live on Earth with his family. His mission is to work for a company that is planning to drill into the Earth’s core, which is where Hell is located, and stop them from doing so. Now, here is the catch: he can not use any of his demon magic – otherwise, the show would be over by now.

According to popdose.com, the show is “The Addams Family” meets “Family Guy.” The family includes a very uptight wife, two teenage kids, their uncle and a talking dog that is smarter than everyone else. Seem a little familiar?

I am not too sure what the outcome of this show will be, but I do have to agree with popdose.com writer Scott Malchus.

“‘Neighbors from Hell’ is just another clichéd sitcom about a misfit family trying to fit in,” he said. “The jokes are flat, the gross out humor is forced, and the voice actors sound kind of bored.” I give the show 2 stars.

I have to say that the USA Network is done very well for itself. It houses two of cables biggest TV shows, “Burn Notice,” which brings in over 6.4 million viewers; and “Royal Pains,” which brings in over 5.8 million viewers. Whether you are into having an action-packed summer with lots of explosives, shooting and combat with a little love story thrown in or a romantic medical comedy, the USA Network is where you need to tune into on Thursday nights. I give both shows five stars.

Last but surely not least, ABC Family has lined up a summer of secrets for us all. This month they revealed a brand new series entitled “Pretty Little Liars” which brought in 2.5 million viewers for its season premiere. The show is pretty much “I Know What You did Last Summer” meets “Desperate Housewives.”

It consists of four teenage girls who all suffered the loss of their dear friend Alison, who suddenly disappeared. Alison, coincidently, also harbored some secrets about each of the four girls that no one else knows. A year after Alison’s disappearance, all four young ladies start receiving messages from a person called “A,” who begins haunting them with their own secrets. We have Aria, played by Lucy Hale, who is struggling with that fact that her dad cheated with one of his students. Aria is also having an affair with her teacher. Spencer is sneaking around with her sister’s fiancé. Hanna is the “It Girl” who is very insecure about her physical image and loves to shoplift. Oh, and her mother sleeps with police officers in order to keep her out of trouble. Then we have Emily, who is sexually confused. Believe it or not, all of this information was revealed in the first episode.

As entertaining as it all is, however, there’s just too much going on for me to handle. With the over-worked plots and the horrible acting, hopefully it will get cancelled soon. Though that’s highly unlikely, I give the show four stars just for making an effort.

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