NEW SHOWS ARE STARTING TO AIR!!! I actually watched more than just 3 current scripted shows this week!!! EDIT: Sorry about the length but the YouTube embeds were to small aparently
- Transporter: The Seriesfinally has a trailer , thus proving its existence. The show based on the Jason Statham film series with Chris Vance (Prison Break) as the titular Transporter as he goes on jobs getting involved with Russian, German and all types of gangsters and beautiful women. It looks a bit made for TV but overall looks like a decent bit of action television. Transporter: The Series will air 12 episodes on Cinemax.
- Homeland was a hit for Showtime and now it is time to get hype for season 2...with this new trailer. Taking a que from The Social Network, it uses kids for an o so creepy cover of “Every Breath You Take” by The Police (The ultimate stalker song)
- The Inbetweeners US remake, which will be airing on MTV August 20 has a trailer. The Inbetweeners is a remake of a British teenage comedy. The trailer looks generic as hell, literally take every non John Hughes High School comedy/drama and just make it look utterly soulless. You can watch 2 of 3 seasons of the original Inbetweeners on Netflix the show is 18 episodes and a movie long.
- *GAME OF THRONES CASTING SPOILER* With all the talk of Mance Rayder, The King Beyond the Wall in season 2 I was very bummed to not get to see who this King looked like. You can get an idea of what Mance will look like now since Ciaran Hinds (Rome) has been cast as Mance Rayder for season 3 of Game of Thrones. EW
- Doctor Who will not need a new Doctor till at least 2014. Matt Smith has said to be signed on until then thanks to Steven Moffat’s ideas for the show “His first episode sounds great. It hasn’t been written yet but the idea is as brilliant and as mental as you’d expect from Steven. So there’s a lot to look forward to.”
- Jodie Foster is going to produce and direct the pilot of a new mob series for Showtime called Angie's Body. Body will be a female centric mob show, gotta tap that crossover between The View and Sopranos. Foster has directed sporadically over the years last directing The Beaver.
- Community has begun filming its fourth season. Pictures(1 2) from writer Andy Brobow’s Twitter confirms it to be so!
- Christopher Guest,Count Tyrone Rugen and yes the maker of those fine mockumentaries. Is going to be making a new one only it will be a TV series on HBO reports Deadline
- HA! Another week and more bits of Arrow casting news. John Barrowman, Captain Jack in Torchwood, has been cast as "Well-dressed man who is as mysterious as he is wealthy … he is an acquaintance of the Queen family and a prominent figure in Starling City.". It sounds like he could be Stanley Dover who eventually became known as The Star City Slayer. EW Also here is a poster, destiny may leav it’s mark but not on Stephen Amell pretty face
Grimm S2 Ep01(23) “Bad Teeth” SEASON PREMIER
When Grimm was first revealed, it struck me as a cheap Whedon-less attempt to recreate Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It was a genre show, on a 4th rated network, airing in the Friday night death slot, not exactly great odds for success. As it aired, Grimm slowly began to build a little buzz as a decent bit of genre fair. Than it became the only scripted show to actually get any traction on NBC so a second season was a given. In the post Olympics watching haze NBC has put Grimm in an earlier time slot, Monday where it will stay for the first 5 episodes before returning to the Friday death slot to keep Community and Whitney company.
Season 1 ended on the cliffhanger reveal that Nick isn’t really an orphan, with his mom standing in the living room having just dispatched Kimura with little effort. This undos one of the more interesting premises for the show, that Nick is an orphan, alone in this world filled with monsters.
Season 2 doesn't start there it begins on a ship that is carrying a cat man, Mauvais Dentes, who proceeds to massacre everyone. With that bit of case of the week laid, it’s back to the Burkhardt family reunion.
Having Nicks mom around undos one of the more interesting premises for the show, that Nick is an orphan, alone in this world filled with monsters. Like a comic of soap opera these things can be unwritten, It turns out Nick’s mom wasn’t in the “car crash” and has been on the run ever since. Having her back does provide plenty of exposition and lore telling. Every other line Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio speaks is about those magic coins, or magic keys, or royal families, with constant references to the number 7, or apologizing for that whole lying about her death thing. Most of this lore came off as dry and lifeless but it did get a chuckle when she went all “One Ring” about having to cast back the coins into the fiery chasm from whence it came. Her presence also changes Peter Parker dynamic Nick has going on. David Giuntoli is one note and a little reminiscent of what early Amazing Spider-Man Parker appeared to be like from the trailers. Now he has an Obi-Wan to learn from. Having an Obi -Wan type around would normally be interesting, but here it isn’t all that interesting.
This was a catch up and foundation building episode. Yes there is that thing with the Mauvais Dentes, but he is just the monster of the week and doesn't really matter. Everything else is about reminding viewers constantly that Juliette is in a magic coma or talk about those coins and keys. All of this really kills any momentum to the episode, which is a bit forgiveable with the To Be Continued ending. Part one was all set up now they need to reel us in with some decent action.
As an introduction to the world of Grimm “Bad Teeth” isn’t the worst. It’s a bit dry and lifeless but if they are going to expand the world beyond Portland this is a necessary thing.
C I wasn’t totally sold or blown away but eh it’s kinda interesting and we are still waiting for Fall to start
It Came From My Instant Queue: Sports Night S1 EP10-23 and S2 EP1-4
I went on a total Sports Night binge Tuesday after not really watching the show on Netflix for about a month, after saying I was going to write about it every week. Than here I was. Alone, at my computer....alone. So I decided to hop back into Sports Night. So here is an attempt to recap and get through 13 episodes in some sort of readable fashion.
Netflix makes it way too easy to just go “I’ll have another”, no longer do I have to wait through credits. They just disappear in the corner and the next episode is queued up with the summary and a 15 second count down till it starts playing.
The first 10 episodes of Sports Night were very individual. Other than episodes 5 and 6,"Mary Pat Shelby" "The Head Coach, Dinner, and the Morning Mail", getting a previously on there wasn’t anything that really linked things together. This changes around episode 14 “Rebecca”, with more previously on intros as well as more recurring storylines. These little things actually got me to care more about the characters beyond Casey. Dan finally gets something to do other than be the cool friend to Casey, with his Rebecca storyline. The Jeremy-Natalie relationship actually gets a bit of development. All of these things are than just interwoven between the slight annoyance of the week...like a bomb threat.
Sorkin’s handling of the Jermy-Natalie relationship by pushing it to the side and letting it be a layer to the character of both Jeremy and Natalie is something I wish more shows did. Predominantly shows seem to make the couplings of characters the dominant feature for the characters. Are they a couple? Yes, but they never stop being shown individually.
Dan for the first 10 episodes was that friend with the advice and witticisms but was definitely in the background. After “Rebecca” he gets to do something on his own with that storyline. That it most shows would of had it end the other way.
The longest running storyline was the relationship between Dana and Casey. With Natalie constantly insisting that they are both secretly in love with one another.Now turns out they are but all throughout the Gordon line Casey never really tried to break them up. This show did a good job establishing that these two have been friends for at least 10 years and that in the end they just want one another to be happy. This made the reveal that Gordon was wearing his shirt in “Sally” and then letting it go under the radar for a couple episodes interesting.
I would be remiss to not bring up the slight tragedy that happened to Sports Night actor Robert Guillaume, who suffered a stroke during production of Season 1. This was then written into the show (episode 19 “Eli’s Coming”) and became one of the more consistent storylines in the later fourth of the season. Dana is forced to bluff to the network that Isaac is recovering well and run Sports Night at the same time as well as contend with all the other stuff. Having only really seen Felicity Huffman on Desperate Housewives, I gained a bit more respect for her talents as an actor with this part of the show.
Overall the first season of Sports Night is very good and worth watching.
Season 2 was the final season of Sports Night, it wasn’t getting great ratings and even with offers to go to HBO,Showtime, or USA Sorkin chose instead to focus on The West Wing.
The Dana-Casey relationship seemed to finally be moving forward now with Gordon out of the picture and the 90 days cooling off period is over. Ending the first episode of season 2 with a kiss. So they are going to be the new power couple of the show, that’s fine, been waiting 23 episodes for it to either happen or not happen. So they are definitely going to do it right? Pull that trigger. NOPE. Sorkin comes up with one of the most retarded ideas for why a relationship cannot happen in TV history. Dana goes to a bachelorette party and gets the idea in her head that Casey hasn’t dated enough people and so their relationship will inevitably fail. So in order to get the best chance she makes Casey wait 6 months and date other people...which isn’t really happening so far. This is a retarded idea. You already moved beyond the hey they are actually good friends part and can’t regress back until you break them up, but you can’t do that if there isn’t a union.
Season 2 also added William H. Macy, one of my favorite actors, to the roster as the “ratings guy” Sam Donovan. He is introduced like a typical network suit and thus “evil”, like a more consistent Jay Jay. He isn’t that evil though he is a bounty hunter, Isaac hired him to do a job and he intends to do it. He gives a nice Sorkin walk and talk monologue about the history of television as he shows the useless suit from network the door. It looks like he awkward guy no one can really read but the audience knows is actually good.
Looks like the season storyline is going to be more fighting with the network over ratings and control. Overall season 2 has started good and kept the same level of quality from previous episodes even if the Dana Casey thing has sunk like the Titanic for now.
Strike Back S2 Ep1-2 “Episode 1” “Episode 2” SEASON PREMIERE
Going in the most I’d known of Strike Back was that its annoying preroll ads on YouTube. From the few seconds of video it looks extremly B grade. It’s on Cinemax, which isn’t really known for original programing. The advertisements pushed the explosions to 11. And it is called Strike Back! Not exactly the best odds. In its favor Lord Tywin himself, Charles Dance is in this now.
Strike Back is an odd show, now a co-production between HBO and Sky. the British spec ops show now enters its second season on Cinemax. Only it isn’t the second season. It is really the third. This makes trying to look up information on the show rather troublesome. Adding to the oddity is the mixture of melodrama and solid 24 and Black Hawk Down style action on the small screen. Make no mistake, this is a show that is predominantly about people who go out killing bad guys and blowing things up. These aren’t a bunch of meatheads with M4A1 rifles, they are driven and tortured individuals with their own drama. This sprinkling of pathos gives Strike Back the right amount of action and drama.
It’s just another day for Section 20. Off in Africa supervising the pick of an Libyan seeking to trade information for asylum. Things can’t go easy for Damian Scott and soon he loses his packages and must get them back. He is on his own this time, and soon finds himself captured as well..
Ex-comrade in arms Sergeant Michael Stonebridge is adjusting to teaching SAS recruits. Taking the position to make things work with his wife. The job proves to be harder than it looks with this plot overtaking everything in episode 1. One of his students, who is suffering from PTSD goes insane and forces Stonebridge to take him out before he kills everyone. They overdo it a bit with Stonebridge holding his fallen student shouting his name in the stormy rain. Prior to that though the visceral nature of the cinematography more than earned its moments.
Stonebridge is pulled back in for the low chance possibility of rescuing Damian, Rachel, and everyone else. It’s a good thing that Cinemax aired episode 1 and 2 together, like a movie. Cutting them up week to week would not have made for good television.
Like most shows in the genre, secrecy and intelligence make for deus ex machina types of dramatic reveals. Turns out the Libyan was going to trade information and was planning to sell a couple of nuclear detonators. Once this bit of information is dispensed he is taken care of swiftly. The trek across Mogadishu is met with similar twists and turns that one would expect. Even if these twists aren’t surprising the gunfights that come out of it are worth it.
It’s surprising the amount of stuff they are able to cram into 48 a minutes. From the large run and gun fights to the smaller stories about a man who lives and dies in Africa. Going forward depending on how many explicit multipart missions they do could affect the week to week watch ability of the show. Episode 1 didn’t end on an over dramatic cliffhanger but episodic television needs to work both in terms of mini episodic arcs and season long ones. “Episode 1” didn’t work that well as an individual piece of entertainment.
Episode 1 C+
Episode 2 B If you are missing some decent action television on your television Strike Back is your best bet.
The Newsroom S1 Ep09 “The Blackout Part II: Mock Debate”
Initial reactions to things are normally very basic and loud emotions. The immediate reaction to “The Blackout Part II: Mock Debate” was “What was the point of that?”. This question as “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” cover by Amy Whinehouse played. Realizing I didn’t have a full grip on what exactly I didn’t like and coming at it from a nihilistic view wouldn’t work. So I watched it again, 20 minutes later.
As “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” played for a second time a lyric from the second verse stood out “Is this a lasting treasure/Or just a moment's pleasure?”. This question was the point of these two episodes. Will and the team change overnight in the name of ratings, protecting Wills job, the debate, but do the ends justify the means?They already dropped their operating procedure once and Mac points out now they just need to protect Will. Is what News Night 2.0 was prior a lasting treasure, or just a moment of pleasure? How can they expect to have their honor restored so quickly with a debate?
It comes as no surprise that they do not get the debate in the end. Their format is kind of crazy. Even though the older official, an old friend of Will’s, knows where he is coming from the younger official who runs the show stops it before it can get started. So they don’t get the debate. All that work and slumming it with Casey Anthony is for not. Mackenzie than freaks out, again like always. Will is through slumming it for now at least and throws out the rundown like in “We Just Decided To” and lead with the Debt Ceiling.
Prior to the second freakout of the episode and picking up at the end of Part 1 the crew must quickly answer the question of how to do the show without any electricity. Never deterred MacKenzie gives everyone a rousing speech to do the show outside and become a team again. Right as she is about to seal the deal the lights come back on and she painfully returns to her job, tapping an interview with some Wiener gate girl.
With the lights back on now the crew must get back to covering Casey Anthony and Weiner. Most importantly, in the name of ratings get a guest no one else could! Turns out Maggies roommate Lisa went to school with the mother. Off to her job as a high end dress seller to whoo her into being on the show despite her loathing of the media coverage around it. For a writer who seems to have stupid people around only to make the smart ones look better the dialog and acting from John Gallagher, Jr. was painful and not in a good way. Her whole interview segment while I can get behind the intention was just a bit to speechy.
Neal becomes the only one trying to report any real news. Well if you believe the idea that internet trolls are newsworthy. I honestly find the idea that this is newsworthy. As well as the idea that Neal meets the death threater in the troll site a bit insulting. At least this week Olivia Munn shouting and acting “angry/shocked’ at Neal using her as his object to troll wasn’t as bad. Dev Patel is a likeable dude, he made Slumdog Millionaire so watchable, and he is sattled with Bigfoot and trolls.
This return to the right isn’t enough to end things on a happy note. “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” is also a lovers refrain and this is how we end “The Blackout Part II: Mock Debate”. Getting all the relationship stuff moved an inch forward before the finale. As much as I kind of enjoy the choice of music in the end the final scenes preceding it was stuff I did not care about. Jim-Maggie-Don-Lisa relationship square is not that interesting and does not tug at my heartstrings. Neal trying to troll the internet not that interesting. Will struggling with forgiving Mac, OK kind of interesting.
The Newsroom hasn’t been hitting home runs every week. Even without batting a .1000 the past 9 weeks haven’t been the worst television ever.
C- Hopefully the finale is better
Copper S1 Ep “Surviving Death" SERIES PREMIERE
Copper marks the first original BBC America series. Unsurprisingly the show is a crime procedural. This being the BBC they at least make it unique by putting it in 1860’s New York. Procedurals normally do not interest me that much, but this one seems unique enough that I might stick around.
Following the lives of the Irish police, in particular Kevin Corcoran(Tom Weston-Jones) as they try to do the right thing in the seedy underbelly of New York City. Corcoran is a man trying to do good and doesn't have a problem with going beyond the law to get it. As seen by him bludgeoning a suspect and holding him hostage or stealing money from a bank robbery. His character in general is a bit odd. On one hand Corcoran is driven by the death of the little girl, Kate but on the other he is near statuesque when he is told by a negro character of recent hangings. Death wasn’t always equal back than so perhaps they are going for some “historical accuracy”.
In the end he is just one man though and can’t fight the powerful new millionaires of the New York on his own. Even though he seems well connected with both upper and lower classes.
Copper is a bit slow not a lot of your typical CSI style clue hunting. Only being the first episode one can’t be certain if this will be the norm of the show or since it is the first it was more worried with introductions than crime solving. These introductions are hamfistedly handled by the script as it tries to sketch out how Corcoran knows such a wide variety of people in New York.
Copper appears promising at this point with its setting and a possible more serialized nature.
C Could be good but with Sunday nights becoming more crowded with shows will it last?
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