Invasion of the CW on Netflix Plus The Rockford Files

The torrent of television shows arriving on Netflix is showing no sign of letting up. The latest deluge is brought to you by the CW. These just arrived for viewing:

Ringer Season 1 (2011) – TV-14

“A young woman on the run from the mob poses as her wealthy twin sister to try and evade them, but soon discovers that her sister has a price on her head as well.”

Poor Sarah Michelle Gellar never found her footing after Buffy. Who would have thought that Allison Hannigan would have been the one to make it big from that show?

The Vampire Diaries Season 3

“Trapped in adolescent bodies, feuding vampire brothers Stefan and Damon vie for the affection of captivating teenager Elena, who attempts to unravel the many dark secrets of her hometown of Mystic Falls.”

I really enjoyed this show once I got past the first few episodes. Kevin Williamson’s writing is pretty snappy.

The Secret Circle Season 1 (2011) – Rated TV-14

“Six teenage witches form a coven in Chance Harbor, Washington.”

90210 Season 4

In this spinoff of the 1990s series, aspiring actress Annie and her adopted brother, Dixon, deal with nonstop drama at their exclusive new high school, where tumultuous friendships and roller coaster romances rule.

The Rockford Files (1974-1979) – Not Rated

“James Garner shines in this iconic 1970s series as Jim Rockford, a Los Angeles private eye with a trailer on the beach, a wisecrack on his lips and the intellect to crack every case. Not the usual loner, Rockford is hardboiled but never hard to like. Rockford’s biggest fans are his dad, Rocky (Noah Beery Jr.), and best friend, cop Dennis Becker (Joe Santos), who help him as he nabs bad guys on the dangerous but scenic streets of Los Angeles.”

Netflix has finally added more episodes of this iconic series.

More CW – Supernatural & 90210 on Netflix

More TV goodies from the CW have appeared on instant Netflix. Now if only Hulu Plus would let us watch the entire current season of CW shows. I finally caught up on Vampire Diaries to the current season and only the five most recent episodes are available on Hulu Plus.

Supernatural

“Raised by their dad to fight supernatural forces, grown siblings Dean and Sam crisscross the country in their 1967 Chevy Impala, investigating paranormal activity and picking fights with deadly demons, ghosts and monsters.”

This show is most often compared to Buffy the Vampire Slayer and to my mind that is unfair because it comes up wanting. Buffy started off strong and just got stronger and more complex. Supernatural starts off cute but really nothing special. The first few seasons are an enjoyable monster romp and the two leads, Dean (Jensen Ackles) and Sam (Jared Padalecki) are very likeable. They wisecrack and hunt monsters and then wisecrack some more.

One of the problems with the show is actually Whedon-itis. Joss Whedon has nothing to do with the show but Joss Whedon showed in Buffy (and Angel and Firefly) that you could get a real emotional jolt by killing off a beloved character. It helped create a real sense of danger – the characters were actually in peril!

Supernatural creator Eric Kripke learned that lesson but was very imprecise with its use. Pretty much every time an interesting minor character is introduced in the show in the first couple of seasons, they die off shortly after. Usually it is long enough to find them interesting but not long enough to actually care about the character.

So the first three seasons are enjoyable in a fun Kolchak the Night Stalker kind of way. The fourth and fifth seasons however are actually wonderful. All the time invested in the show pays off with a series of complex interconnected storylines and Misha Collins joins the show as Castiel. Castiel ends up being a far more compelling character than either Sam or Dean. Kripke wisely takes time out from some of the heavier aspects of the overall story to produce a few absolutely hysterical episodes to break things up.

Kripke had originally planned to end the show after five seasons but Supernatural’s popularity was clearly too tempting. The sixth season was good but very uneven and the seventh is following suit so perhaps this should have ended after the first five.

90210

“In this spinoff of the 1990s series, aspiring actress Annie and her adopted brother, Dixon, deal with nonstop drama at their exclusive new high school, where tumultuous friendships and roller coaster romances rule.”

I have not seen this show, nor have I seen the show it is based on. I just thought I’d mention it while I was talking about the CW.