Today’s cuppa: Irish breakfast tea

Yesterday, I dashed off a post about the things I don’t plan to get worked up about in 2010. But as symmetry is the essence of much beauty in nature (as anyone who watches a fresh snowfall even and make elegant the lawn rutted by the stump-pulling Bobcat last summer), I must offer up a complimentary list.

chuck-poster-400wi.jpgSo without further ado, here are my Top 5 Things I Do Indeed Plan to Care About in 2010:

5: All the returning shows whose arrival is long-awaited and much-anticipated, as newness has its charms, but the sound of an old friend’s tread on the porch makes the heart sing.

So, for my part, I bid a warm “Welcome Back!” to NBC’s “Chuck,” Fox’s “24,” FX’s “Damages,” HBO’s “Big Love,” NBC’s “The Celebrity Apprentice,” FX’s “Nip/Tuck” (yeah, it’s not what it used to be, but who among us is?) and ABC’s “Lost.” Of them only the last two have no chance of coming back next year, so if you love any of the others, lavish that love on their sponsors, and make sure to tell them why you’re doing it. As the cops always say, follow the money.

This is just my list. There are lots more shows coming back, and while I may not be a fan of them all, anything getting a new season in this economic climate is cause for celebration.

4: The new midseason shows, for among these late-blooming flowers may be found enduring hits. From “Malcolm in the Middle” to “Grey’s Anatomy,” shows that slip in
after the first of the year sometimes stick around far longer than
their more-heralded fall siblings.Archer.jpg

So, among others, let’s keep an eye on FX’s “Archer,” Fox’s “Human Target,” The CW’s “Life Unexpected,” Syfy’s “Caprica,” Starz’ “Spartacus: Blood and Sand” (which has already been renewed for a second season), CBS’ “Undercover Boss,” Fox’s “Past Life,” NBC’s “Parenthood” and Fox’s “Sons of Tuscon.”

3: Those that create good TV.

The fact that both solid entertainment and real art arise from the muck and mire of the modern entertainment industry is a small miracle. I hereby congratulate all those TV alchemists who manage to turn commerce into gold. Such literary warriors for the working day as Shakespeare, Dickens and Poe would be proud.

2: Those who watch good TV.

No matter the quality, an unwatched TV show will wither and die. To the ordinary fans who just tune in week after week to the superfans who maintain Websites, attend conventions, write letters and even send peanuts and Tabasco sauce, I say a big “Thank you!” Upon your patronage, the entire TV industry — and, by extension, the livelihoods of folks like me — depends.

071225-A-7969G-174(2).jpg1: The men and women of America’s armed forces and all first responders.

Today and always, I honor those whose sacrifice makes possible the freedom and safety to both create good TV and watch good TV. I salute you, who are truly the best of us.

Posted by:Kate O'Hare