TRYING TO LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE: Another year has begun, and the paucity of TV news means lots of retrospective and anticipatory themes from columnists, so why should I be any different? Alan Sepinwall of the New Jersey Star-Ledger took time to take Shonda Rhimes, Tim Kring, the writers on House, Amy Sherman-Palladino and Jeff Zucker to task for, respectively, this season of Grey’s Anatomy, this season of Heroes, the character of Remy “Thirteen” Hadley, The Return Of Jezebel James and the decision to abandon the 10 p.m. weekday time slot to Jay Leno’s new show.

Over at TelevisionWithoutPity.com, Angel Cohn fervently wished for more Simon on American Idol, more fun on Heroes, a less annoying Pam on The Office, some real A-list stars on Dancing With The Stars, and some personality for Anna Torv’s Olivia on Fringe. Reading over her list made me wonder a) that Fringe didn’t get cancelled after three episodes, and b) that TV columnists sure watch a hell of a lot of TV.

Zap2It.com’s TV critic Rick Porter made nine resolutions for the industry, wishing that CBS could wean itself off of police procedurals, that Fox could come up with a good comedy that wasn’t a cartoon, that HBO can make a break from “the dense, somber shows the channel has tried out in the past couple years” (I disagree, but whatever) and that NBC can “rediscover its soul,” instead of programming based on profit margins from mediocre but mysteriously profitable shows. Good luck on that one.

Porter also wishes that Battlestar Galactica, about to head into the last half of its farewell season, will get a bit more respect from the industry. “None of the show's fine ensemble of actors has ever sniffed an Emmy or Golden Globe nomination,” Porter writes, “and it counts no series honors and only a couple of writing and directing Emmy nods.”

I’d second that, especially since Galactica is a prime example of exactly the sort of show no major network or “quality cable” outlet like HBO would ever get behind, despite the fact that shows like Galactica are probably the future of TV – genre-defying, intensely addictive, and wildly influential for at least the next few years. Beyond that, the only thing I’m hoping to see in the new year is a new series of Metalocalypse and those overdue Mary Tyler Moore Show box sets.